When wedding photographer Michael of My Beautiful Bride told me that Craig and Melanie were one of his most adventurous couples yet, I took it with a pinch of salt. But then I saw their wedding day portraits where they got into a bath of water – fully clothed – with their dog! Not that’s something you don’t see everyday. If, like Melanie, you’re not bothered about keeping your wedding dress pristine, you totally need to do something like this. How fun!
“Our wedding was 1950s chic with a homemade slice of psychedelia”, began Craig. “We really wanted the whole party to feel relaxed and personal for both us and our guests, so we did as many things as possible to make this happen. This included the name badges we made, the games on the tables and in the gardens, the caterers, the music and the dress policy. Everything was always focused on fun and having a good time and not being too regimented.”
Pink haired brides always have a special place in my heart (it’s not difficult to see why!) and so when wedding photographer Chris Barber submitted Cat and Craig’s October wedding I didn’t hesitate to say yes! The wedding took place on Sunday 20th and was held at New Hall Hotel and Spa in Birmingham.
“Our wedding theme was based around Alice in Wonderland”, explained Craig. “Our waiting music consisted of instrumental pieces by the films of Tim Burton and the guest tables were named after famous Alice in Wonderland characters. Each centrepiece was individual to each particular character from the book and items were sourced from vintage fares, car boot sales, charity shops, second hand shops and eBay.”
“We selected the iconic moments from Alice in Wonderland for the tables. For instance, the mad hatter table was themed around a tea party and the caterpillar table was themed around his hookah pipe.”
On a sunny Saturday in July, Natasha and Tom said “I do” under the summer house at South Farm. The bride wore a stunning Jenny Packham gown and headpiece and the groom looked dashing in his Mr Start suit.
“We didn’t really have a theme”, Tom began. “We knew we wanted to make it down to earth and styled to reflect us… that turned into a part-Festival, part-Country Fete. Picking a farm to get married on only led us down this path further as we wanted everything to look very natural, simple and relaxed.”
“In the barn for the reception we had bunting, large deco paper balls, Polaroid and Holga cameras for the tables and canvas tote bags that we designed ourselves filled with silly little things from joke shops and Etsy. On our ceremony chairs we tied colourful ribbons and the sign post made by Natasha’s Dad. We used my Grandma’s 1920s suitcase for cards and had old watering cans from my parents for the flowers.”
Abbie and Chris were married at The Stables in Brinkburn Briory, a unique venue that really helped to set the tone of their day. “I think the venue for us was probably one of the most unique parts of our wedding”, Abbie told me. “There hadn’t been many weddings before ours there and the derelict building next to the priory has featured on the TV show ‘Most Haunted’. It was a beautiful place for pictures.”
The couple added personal and handmade touches throughout the wedding, my favourite item of course being the Lego rainbow unicorn cake topper! Surprisingly it was actually the groom that wanted this! “Before we started organising the wedding, we had never really thought about what we wanted, only what we didn’t want!” the bride continued. “However Chris did mention a few times that he would like a unicorn. This was said even before we got engaged and most of our friends and family knew about his request. It would have been sad not to allow him what he wanted! So he built his own Lego unicorn cake topper including a silver glittery horn. It was a huge talking point of the day!”
Becca and Chris were married at Larmer Tree Gardens on the Dorset/ Wiltshire border. They wanted their day to be small and stress-free so they only had nine guests. “We didn’t have a theme for our wedding, we just picked things we loved, without thinking too carefully about whether they would match,” began the bride. “That’s why I wore an art deco dress, the car was from the 1950s and our entertainment was a Mariachi band mash-up! The main thing was that we wanted our love of travel to come across, so we had a lot of map bunting, colour, and a global influence to our food and music.”
“It was quite a challenge not to get sucked into the wedding vortex, but we tried our best to stay away from it and we didn’t buy any wedding magazines or go to any wedding fairs. In fact, Larmer Tree Gardens was the first and only wedding venue we visited. We did everything exactly the way we wanted.”
Did you grow up dreaming of a fairytale wedding? If so then have I got the wedding inspiration for you. When Megan married Grant in September she knew she’d be taking cues from her love of Disney. In fact it started with the proposal on the top of Sleeping Beauty’s castle!
“Grant knew how much Disney meant to me, so he popped the question on the balcony of Sleeping Beauty’s castle in Disneyland Paris”, Megan explained. “We wanted to bring some of that Disneyland magic and escapism to our big day, and we did so with bright, happy colours, Disney motifs, and a medley of Disneyland Park music playing in the marquee during lunch.”
“Our ceremony was quite non-traditional”, she continued. “I wrote it myself, and we were married by Grant’s best man, a close friend who knows us better as a couple than anyone else. Instead of being walked down the aisle by my dad, I asked him to perform a song for me to walk to. On the day he surprised me by playing an acoustic version of ‘Part of Your World’ from The Little Mermaid. It was so touching and it really set the tone for the day. The ceremony itself was full of funny anecdotes that had us both laughing and crying, then we finished with a handfasting. It was extremely personal, and perfectly suited to us a couple.”