Chris and Ursula met at the age of 18, when they were both obsessed with music and played in a combined schools orchestra. “He had a massive curly shoulder-length afro at the time, I wore a pink school uniform; he played oboe, I played clarinet”, she said. “We bonded over car rides home and his mum’s choc-chip cookies. We were shy young things though and didn’t eventually get together until a year or so later, after I returned from living in Denmark for a year.”
“I think the thing that made our wedding ‘unique’ or different was that so many of the things we chose were things that we just liked – not things that we thought we ‘should’ have or do”, she continued. “I wore a red dress, not white, because I didn’t feel like ‘me’ in any of the classic white ones that I tried on. We had a cute red kombi van rather than a classic old car because we figured if we had to hire transport, it may as well be fun! We ordered a tiramisu cake rather than a classic wedding cake because… well, we really wanted to eat tiramisu at our wedding! We also secretly got dance lessons for a couple of months and learnt an awesome swing dance for our first dance!”
Suzie and Marc were married in Cork in June. They wanted their wedding to be fun, with hints of the 1950s. They were inspired by their favourite movie, The Quiet Man, for their overall retro theme.
“Our wedding was a Irish festival with fifties touches”, began Suzie. “Everything was unique in the sense that we wanted to make it our own and completely different to any other wedding we’d been to. Our venue was Glengarriff Lodge in Cork and was the perfect setting for our wedding as it is steeped in history. It is the former hunting lodge of The Earl of Bantry and is located on a man made island surrounded by The Glengarriff River and one of Ireland’s only ancient natural forests.”
Annabel and Steve met in a nightclub in Scotland. The Aussie bride and her English groom were married eight years later in Melbourne, where they now live. “Our wedding was rustic and vintage in styling with an urban setting and with a nod to our international roots”, Annabel said.
“We did a lot of things differently to the norm including the fact that my brother was one of my bridesmaids! I also wore a tea length dress and Steve and his groomsmen caught a tram to the ceremony. We had a kick ass taco stand instead of a traditional wedding breakfast too and we provided a babysitter so parents could enjoy themselves without worrying about their little ones.”
Sadie and Marie were married at Calke Abbey Riding School, a National Trust venue in Derbyshire. They were the first same sex couple to marry here and they fell in love with it’s less than perfect appearance. It was the ideal setting for their alternative wedding.
“Our wedding day was perfectly imperfect”, explained the brides. “We were adamant we did not want a prefabricated, immaculate wedding and opted for a laid back, rough round the edges kind of day. We chose the amazing venue, not for the grand unstately home (yes it’s really called that!), but for the rustic, flaking paint and quirky riding school, owned by the National Trust. We also made history by being the first same sex couple to have a ceremony there! We visited the venue on several occasions and it was transformed every time. We wanted a blank canvas where we could truly make our mark.”
Emily and Adam were married in May in Hitchin. Their wedding had a vintage travel theme and was full of DIY details. The bride made her own dress from Nottingham lace and Indian silk which she wore with a DIY birdcage veil. Her bouquet was also made from around 50 antique fine bone china flower brooches, collected from various charity shops and car boot sales throughout the engagement.
“We both love exploring new places, and Adam has done a great deal of travelling”, Emily began. “I have a love for the Winnie the Pooh quote ‘As soon as I saw you, I knew an adventure was going to happen’ too, and the idea that our marriage will be a grand adventure! We also both love antique globes and old maps, and somehow all this fell into place as a theme. We came up with the tagline ‘An Adventure Begins…’ and I drew up a little logo to go with it.”
A colourful affair paying homage to some of their all time favourite pop icons was the theme of Katy and Matthew’s London wedding. This quirky wedding had fun, DIY touches and a heavy dose of vintage inspiration to boot.
“We wanted our wedding to include the things we love and be a lot of fun for everyone involved, as well as not following the usual formula”, wrote the bride. “We love throwing a party (usually fancy dress) and so this was hopefully going to be a bigger and better version of one of those. I knew I wanted it to have a vintage element and also be a colourful mish-mash, but there wasn’t a particular theme apart from that.”
The wedding was held at The Chainstore, an event space at Trinity Buoy Wharf with a view of the iconic O2 arena. It is a completely blank canvas so the couple could do exactly what they liked with it! “I wanted the décor to be DIY but without having to spend every minute in the month before the wedding making things”, Katy continued. “Luckily I have a lot of crafty friends and family whom I was able to rope in.”