Chris and Allison’s handfasting witch doctor wedding in the woods was completely homemade. The bride made her own dress and wore shoes from eBay, which she decorated herself. She also made her own headpiece. The flowers were put together by the couple themselves, they created their own invitations, they even self-catered the whole event!
The couple met online in 2011. Alison was living in South Africa at the time and in April 2012 she took a leap of faith and moved over to the UK to be with Chris. Their meeting was unconventional, so their wedding had to be too!
“It has to be recognised, right from the start, that this was never going to be a normal wedding”, said the bride. “Discovering the cultural differences between us and integrating them into a life together was often surprisingly more difficult that you might imagine. Add to that a determination not to follow the crowd and ‘do everything right’ drove things in an unusual and joyous direction from the start. Throw a group of mildly lunatic friends into the mix, determined to make things work for us despite there being no cash whatsoever available and a very firm direction was set.”
Chris and Patrick’s romantic wedding was very small. They had only a handful of guests, mostly family.
“The only inspiration I had was that I wanted the wedding to be just about us, our love and our family”, the bride said. “We wanted everything to be simple. This was actually our second wedding because we originally ran away and eloped in Vegas, just the two of us! We went off to Arkansas to get married in the woods, in the fall surroundings with just a few people who are the most important to us (including our kids) there.”
The ceremony was held inside a glass chapel. “The Thorncrown Chapel is set inside the woods and it was so beautiful with all the fall colours. We attend the Unity Church of Peace back home which I tend to describe as the best little hippie church around, we are very much all about peace and love! We found a local minister who worked for the local Unity Church and she performed a very touching and personal ceremony for us.”
Mike and Bug didn’t have a specific theme for their wedding but it turned into a bit of a magical woodsy fairytale scene! “I love the outdoors, succulents, DIY and crafts”, said the bride. “I love the style our venue, The Garden Cafe and the wedding planner there added the plants and colours I wanted to the space. She masterminded the whole gorgeous space.”
“My awesome maid of honour bought biodegradable balloons shaped like white doves and filled them with helium and handed them out to the children at the ceremony who then released them as we kissed. She also bought biodegradable paper lanterns, the kind that float away, and it was the most beautiful moment I’ve ever been part of, watching everyone I love in this world gathered together sending off these beautiful lanterns into the night sky.”
When I first saw Jody and Shane’s engagement shoot (the bride shared some shots in the Rock n Roll Bride Facebook group!) I almost let out an involuntary squeak. I’m sorry but how friggin’ gorgeous are this pair!? If you’re considering not bothering with an engagement session, I kinda feel these might start to change your mind a little bit…
“Our engagement shoot took place at Oxshott Woods, Surrey”, said Jody. “It had a woodland fairytale theme. We wanted our photos to have a unique quality about them and to represent something classic but also with an edge (like us!) We wanted to add something that made the natural backdrop more magical with the coloured smokebombs.”
BRB just dying over how incredible these are…
If you want to wear a black wedding dress but you’re more woodland nymph than gothic princess, you’re going to adore today’s photo session. Shot in the woods in the Pacific Northwest, the bride wears a show stopper black wedding gown by Claire La Faye.
“I had dreamed up a shoot on a mountaintop, post-hike and surrounded by amazing views, but thanks to a crazy flood warning, we had to make a last minute move to a nearby forest”, explained photographer Caitlyn of CJK Visuals. “The most amazing part was that we had a random black horse just walk up in the middle of our shoot! It couldn’t have been more perfect imperfect timing.”
Alex and Maddy had different ideas about what their wedding should be like, but luckily they learned to compromise! “When we first started discussing the type of wedding we wanted, we realised we were on opposite ends of the spectrum”, explained the bride. “Alex would have been more than happy with a simple registry office with minimal guests whereas I wanted something where we could celebrate with all of our friends and family, where I could feel a bit like a princess for the day! In the end we agreed on a rustic woodland theme and kept to a relatively small budget considering the size of our guest list. We had 105 people (big families!).”
“We decided to throw out all of the typical conventions and plan a wedding that was ‘us’. Alex didn’t want much to do with it (events aren’t his forte) so he gave me a list of his requirements (which were pretty much ‘Hog roast’ and ‘No hats or fascinators’) and I set to work with making the rest of it fall in to place.”
“I don’t feel our wedding was particularly unique or cutting edge, but it was completely right for us and our family and friends. It was a relaxed chilled out day with LOADS of personal details. Having our three year-old daughter involved in the ceremony was really special. She helped tie the knots around our hands during the handfasting part.”