It’s an undeniable cliché that I love all things surrounding weddings: the love, the family, the pretty dresses, the flowers… but I also love to hear the real stories behind these magical looking days. It’s all very well and good sharing the perfectly edited highlights online, but what really went down? Were there injuries? Was one supplier an utter nightmare? Did someone jump on a bouncy castle and end up with a bloody nose? Well, actually, now you come to mention it…
Jack and Krysten were married last July at the groom’s family home. “We wanted it to feel like a playground”, the bride told me. “One of the starting points was having the venue as Jack’s family home, a six-hundred-year-old farmhouse with outbuildings and a pond. There was also the fact that many guests were travelling for the wedding: I am Californian and had friends and family coming in from all across the states. In addition, both of us had friends flying in from various other countries; Canada, Israel, Korea. We felt that because people were travelling such distances, we should really give them a trip to remember, which led to the idea of having it over two days – the ceremony and reception on the Saturday, then a barbecue/ garden games/ recovery day on Sunday.”
If you want to do things low key, intimate and completely on your own terms for your wedding, they Anna and Mark’s big (well, small) day is going to inspire the hell out of you! They were married on December 29th at Camden Town Hall.
“Mark asked me to marry him the morning that I left for a two-week business trip and we agreed that we wanted to get married quickly while my best friend and his husband were in the UK from Texas”, Anna explained. “Mark’s daughter was here from New Zealand too, so we picked a date that was just over a month away. We told very few people before the day, which helped keep it personal and without any sort of pressure to make it more of an ‘event’. Fortunately everyone has been very understanding of this once the news was out and just been really happy for us.”
“Keeping it small was really important to us”, Mark said. “We chose four people each as a guests. Keeping it quiet kept the pressure off. I think getting all the build-up on social media beforehand would have been too much. Although being the centre of attention on Facebook for two whole days afterwards was really touching.”
After the ceremony they had drinks at the World’s End in Camden, and lunch at Honey and Co. “We just reserved a table for our ‘reception’ at my favourite restaurant, Honey and Co. on Warren Street”, said Anna. “We didn’t tell them it was a wedding or anything.”
Katy and Kerr wanted a bright and colourful wedding that would be fun for their guests. They chose to serve afternoon tea, followed by take away pizza in the evening! This not only saved them a lot of cash, but went down a storm with their guests!
“Our wedding theme was bright and colourful”, exclaimed Katy. “We wanted it to be full of fun and sunshine. The rainbow-ness and stars were sort of influenced by our shared love of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series and the Edgar Wright directed movie of the books. These take their inspiration from 8-bit and old-school computer games and that’s exactly what we wanted.”
“We are really pleased that people have commented what FUN it was”, she continued. “When we were planning, that was our absolute number one priority! There was nothing worth doing if it didn’t have love or fun at its heart! That took some people by surprise – it’s funny having a conversation with someone who doesn’t understand that ‘rainbow’ is a totally legitimate wedding colour theme!”
The couple decorated the space completely themselves from paper bunting from FunkyFrillsUK on Etsy, rainbow ribbons and plenty of bits from Hobbycraft! For their ‘cake’ they simply arranged pork pies from the supermarket on a cupcake stand! They decorated them with a customised cake topper made by one of the bridesmaids.
When I shared a preview of Fran and Lewis’ wedding on my Facebook page, you all FREAKED OUT – and with good reason too. I mean, just check out Fran’s killer Couture Company dress, those leopard Crown and Glory kitty ears and their guests of honour – their sphynx cats!
The pair were married at Tutbury Castle in Staffordshire and they had their reception of pizza and movies at home. “Our wedding was just ‘us'”, said Fran. “We wanted everything we love to be a part of the day. That meant cats, pizza, leopard print, Him (our favourite band) Frankenstein and horror films!”
“Our ceremony was a hand-fasting and it was our favourite part of the day. Jumping the broom was amazing… and we got to keep it afterwards! We did it outside so it was really cold and really windy (my Nan had 3 coats on!) but it was wonderful. We also loved having our ‘reception’ back at our own house. Just having our best friends there and watching Pet Semetary (our go-to horror film!) and relaxing was amazing.”
Oh I do love a wedding with a lot of COLOUR and Anya and Karl’s purple and turquoise celebration makes me very happy indeed! They were hitched at The Church Restaurant in Northampton in March.
“We just wanted to celebrate everything we have with the people who have been there for us”, began the bride. “We took inspiration from the things we love and who we are as a family. We had about seven months to plan the wedding. Our son, Grayson, was five months old at the time and it had been a challenging couple of years. Going through IVF, finally being able to meet him and finding out he was sick was really hard (he’s made a full recovery now) and then moving house! We had a moment when we realised that we are so lucky to be here as a family and while we’ve been engaged for five years, the time finally felt right!”
“We didn’t want a white wedding or a wedding that was too big”, she continued. “I particularly love purple, have a thing about buttons and collect ribbons to re-use in my hair or for packaging! Karl loves anything unusual and bright, and as a couple we’re generally quite quirky with our choices.”
I don’t really get that excited by celebrity weddings, but when wedding photographer Woz of Howelljones Photography emailed me and told me he’d shot the secret wedding of Nicolas Cage’s son on an organic farm in Somerset, I was intrigued to say the least! The whole wedding was very low key, super intimate and shrouded in secrecy to avoid the press.
DanielleDawn and Weston had a pagan ceremony followed by a English pub reception. “I got a call from Nic’s agent saying that there will be a wedding on Monday morning in Huntstile Organic Farm, Bridgwater and I need to be there for 10am”, Woz told me. “I didn’t know who it was I photographing until I got there as they didn’t want the press to get hold of it.”
“We all had breakfast in the barn then boarded a tractor and it took us to a stone circle high on a hill near Bridgwater. The pagan ceremony lasted an hour, everybody had to drink from the cup and jump over the sacred sticks.”