Do you watch the BBC Three show Don’t Tell the Bride? When I was engaged I was pretty obsessed. Gareth and I would sit together to watch it every week and my favourite game was quizzing him over what he’d do if he had to plan our whole wedding himself.
Like many of you, I always wondered what everyone got up to behind the scenes – Did the bride really not have anything to do with it? (SURELY you’d be dropping hints like mad before you signed the contract?!) How much influence do the production crew have? And why do the boys always pick the wrong dress?!
This is not the first time I’ve featured a DTTB wedding. Mike and Becky’s wrestling wedding has graced these pages previously but by their own admission they didn’t really enjoy the process. However when I saw Lauren and Perry’s big day, and read that they really did enjoy doing it, I was keen to speak to them about it. Plus what could be more Rock n Roll than a gig themed wedding at one of the most iconic music venues in London!?
“We knew that we wanted to get married but that after having a baby and buying a flat there was never going to be a time when it was financially possible”, Perry began when I asked what made them want to go on the show. “Lauren was going to apply for The Great British Bake Off but saw the application for Don’t Tell The Bride and decided to do that instead. I didn’t think we had much chance of being picked but when she read me her entry email I started to get really nervous. It was GOOD!”
Masha and Lenya are prolific skiers and so wanted this mutual love to be reflected in their Israeli wedding. The day took place at Villa Dalia, in Moshav Ora on the outskirts of Jerusalem. There was free-flowing alcohol and sports references throughout.
“The inspiration was our craziness with several things including Lenya’s love of alcohol and football and my love of skiing and music!” began the bride. “The design of the day was unique.”
“We used the famous vintage alpine ski poster from Chamonix, France as our main design theme. We got one of these posters, dressed the couple into the wedding clothes and added a football theme. This print was used almost in every little part including the invitations and favours.”
Erica and Philip were married in Sweden in October. Philip proposed on their seven year anniversary, and wanting an Autumn wedding but not wanting to wait over a year, they planned their wedding in just four months!
The reception was held in a beautiful orangery owned by one of the bride’s friends. It is located right by one of the Sweden’s biggest lakes and was an incredible backdrop. Because it is privately owned, the venue rarely hosts parties so the couple had a lot of work to do to make it look amazing… but they certainly pulled it off! Having such a blank canvas meant they were really able to put their own stamp on their day.
“Fall is my favourite season and after finding the orangery it was hard even considering any other venue”, began the bride. “The orangery gave us so many things; the natural light, the atmosphere, the great view of the lake, the little garden next to it where we could put up homemade games. It was like being outside without being cold and we knew that no matter the weather it would still be lovely.”
There are so many reasons why I love Ariane and Nikki’s wedding. The setting, their outfits, the laidback-ness… the whole thing just made me feel happy as I wandered through their gorgeous photos. The day started with a small ceremony at City Hall in Deurne and ended with an epic reception at Mirror Tent in Rijkevorsel, Belgium.
“We came up with the wedding theme from one of our favourite songs (which we also sang together at the wedding) Onderweg by Pieter Embrechts”, explained the bride. “It’s a great song about a couple who jump into a car, not knowing where the road will take them, but they’re together and that’s all that matters. We realised that it described our relationship best. Even now we still have our most important conversations in the car, driving from one spot to another. We do a lot of road trips too or take trips with our caravan. it’s also the reason why we did the family pictures in front of our caravan.”
Although Laetitia and Franck aren’t planning to get married, they wanted to do something special for their four year anniversary and so decided to stage a shoot with cake and dessert designer Lauren Delpech of French Made, London. Being born and raised in Marseille, where Laetitia and Franck live, Lauren decided it would be the perfect place for the session. They chose the region of Le Panier because of its winding, hilly streets and Les Goudes Calanques as the stunning beach backdrop.
“A seaside themed photo shoot there may sound totally cliché, but with my team of fab suppliers, we worked with nautical symbols such as anchors, wheels, boats, sea shells”, wrote Lauren, “Laetitia and Franck are into tattooed and live an alternative life, so we included these influences too”.
Evan and Catherine were married at the iconic Phoenix Hotel in San Francisco and their reception was at the super cool Chambers Eat + Drink. They wanted a wedding that was edgy yet elegant – just like them! The venues they chose really helped to set that mood. “After a long search for wedding venues, we were feeling uninspired”, Catherine began. “Pricey and cookie cutter was the theme for most of the spaces we looked at. We needed to find a place that inspired not only us but our guests.”
“After a serendipitous moment of noticing a friends picture labelled ‘Chambers SF’ we found ourself in a Rock n Roll inspired eatery, connected to the iconic San Francisco hotel, The Phoenix. Chambers being Evans last name was just the icing on the wedding cake (which we didn’t have.) Our venue was an oasis in the middle of city lights, it felt absolutely perfect. I channelled my love for art and glam, and kept in mind Evans creativity and knack for the funky and fresh. Together it was a killer and eclectic combo.”