Category Archives: British Brides

A DIY London Wedding & A Barefoot Bride: Hannah & Olly

Hannah & Olly were engaged at Bestival in the inflatable church, “Olly proposed to me at Bestival in the inflatable church following our annual Bestival wedding in front of all our friends dressed as unicorns, Mario, Luigi, Alien babies… ” Hannah wrote to me. “It was chucking it down as we strolled back to the main stage (engaged!) and The Wailers were playing. All of a sudden the sun came out and like from nowhere Olly handed me a Pina Colada in a pineapple! We spent the afternoon dancing to Chic and chinking our pineapples.”

From this unconventional proposal, it was clear that this couple were to have anything but a traditional wedding. As the groom explains, “We’re both very creative people and from the start of organising our wedding we wanted it to be different. Throughout it we used blogs, including Rock n Roll Bride, and we did it together. Myself and Hannah contributed equally and both did a lot of homework on details. The motto from the beginning was that it was to be a party, not a ceremony. With that in mind we kept thinking of the things that we loved from parties we have been to.”

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An Newly-Dead Zombie Shoot: Nicola & Colin

Happy Halloweeeeen mwaaaah hahaha!

I’ve got a couple of suitably spooky posts ready to scare you out of your wedding wits today, starting with this zombie ‘newly-dead’ shoot by wedding photographer Al Overdrive.

I’m sure most of you saw this Zombie Attack engagement that I feature back in August, but for this shoot it was the couple who actually zombied themselves up!

Nicola & Colin were married in 2010, and as a wedding gift, a number of their guests clubbed together and arranged for them to have a photo shoot with professional special effects make up artist Lucy Darkness and  Al Overdrive.

“We shot in East London, getting some funny looks off the public as it was a Saturday afternoon in the middle of the heatwave,” Al told me. “For the most part people were very positive and curious, and thought it was an awesome idea for a newly wed couple to have done as a wedding gift.”

“As you can see from the photos, the couple had a great time, and Lucy and I enjoyed working with them on this unique wedding gift. Nic says she ‘can’t wait to get ’em printed! Would love to hang them in fancy frames when we move into our own place soon’ now that is something I’d like to see.”

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A Personal Preston Court Wedding: Gideon & Dara

Gideon & Dara described their wedding as not really having a particular theme. What was important to them was that their wedding was full of love and that the whole day felt very personal.

The wedding was held at Preston Court in Kent (I love this venue, just check out the reception room with the carousel wall!) which the couple decorated with all manner of things which they had collected themselves. These included paper place mats from Anthropologie, table numbers from Dear Emma Stationary, pom poms from Paper Pom Poms, Mustaches and Lips on Sticks from Mister Mustache and many other props from Amazon and various fancy dress stores.

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A Fun-Filled London Wedding: Sarah & Rueben

Quite apart from the fact that Sarah & Rueben are utterly gorgeous and achingly cool, their wedding is definitely one of those that I wish I was at. The day was simple and perfectly reflected them – they even had Sarah’s lips and Rueben’s mustache as a recurring theme throughout the details. From the stationary to the jam jars, and from the photo booth props to their wedsite….the mustache ‘trend’ is always ultimately cooler when the groom rocks a real one too isn’t it?!

After a Buddhist ceremony at Taplow Court near Maidenhead and a portrait session around London, the reception was held at The Brentham Club in Ealing, West London. The bride wore a dress by Phase 8 and the groom looked dapper in his Topman suit, top hat and velvet bowtie from eBay.

I really love the wedding details, especially the ‘naked’ cake and the suitcase tableplan…

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A Quirky Afternoon Tea & Library Themed Wedding: Ney & Phil

Ney & Phil’s DIY wedding was loosely based around the theme of a books and libraries.

“We wanted a literary theme and thought using vintage books as invites would be a lovely idea,” Ney told me. “We met at University studying English Literature and just love books, in particular old Penguin classics. We found some companies that can make them for you, but they’re expensive so we decided to do them ourselves.”

“We spent weeks to-ing and fro-ing all the vintage bookstores on Charing Cross Road (they do great bargain deals like hardback books for a pound).  I sourced a template for library card sleeves online, used an embossed gold paper to make them and then slotted our wedding invites inside to complete the book.  As much as possible, we tied our book choices to our guests’ interests, e.g. a Portuguese travel guide for my Mum, classic English poems for friends who studied literature with us, and a Guide to British Birds for Phil’s old-charmer Dad.  I love the idea that the invites had a life after the wedding, and it’s great knowing that they’re sitting on our friends’ bookshelves as part of their collection.”

“I used websites like Rock n Roll Bride and many, many (OK, hundreds of) wedding blogs for ideas and inspiration.  We have quite a taste for old vintage things and are constantly rummaging around in markets so used these trips for inspiration on how to display things or what to buy.  Things like the idea of covering books with vintage-style wrapping paper for the centrepieces we got from passing an antique shop in Chelsea, for example.”

It was also really important to the couple to incorporate their different heritages and cultures and so the second part of their wedding theme was based around this. “Throughout the day, we tried to make sure that the wedding was representative of our families’ cultures,” the bride continued.

“Phil’s got an English/Australian background – hence we started the day with afternoon tea, but made sure there were little ethnic touches (like Portuguese custard tarts on the cake stands).  As for my side, the Angolan culture is very celebratory – we make lots of noise, eat lots of food and dance like crazy, so we ended the night with a great big knees-up.”

“One of our favourite moments on the day was after the first song (Jamie Lidell’s Another Day).  As soon as it finished, my Mum made the DJ play an old Brazilian love song we’d never heard before.  Our bemusement turned to wonder as she led my entire family – almost 50 of them! – in a serenade en masse as we danced the, er, second first dance.  What a wonderful memory!  Also memorable was my lovely husband taking secret Portuguese lessons for his wedding speech.  The family went wild!”

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A Patriotic Red, White & Blue Wedding: Julia & James

Julia & James had a handmade and patriotic Great British theme for their September wedding – red, white & blue. “I knew from the moment we started to plan the wedding that I wanted it to be DIY,” the bride told me, “and to be able to keep all the aspects to decorate our home. We had so many great comments on the day from the registrar and venue that they had never seen a wedding like ours before. I am a avid follower of Rock n Roll Bride, Ruffled blog & Green Wedding Shoes so I scrapbooked a lot of ideas from them all over the past 2 years!”

Julia wore two dresses, the first was made by her Mother which she wore with Union Jack Irregular Choice shoes. In the evening she changed into a dress which she bought from eBay. “I saw it one evening when looking for a joke dress to wear to a friend’s hen party and my heart stopped,” Julia continued. “It was the one! I bid as far as my purse would let me, and I didn’t win. I was tweeting away and some of my followers suggested I contact the seller directly.”

“So I did, and asked her how much she wanted for it. I was devastated when she told me the amount as it was more than I could pay at that time. Anyway, I kept tweeting my dismay and had resigned to the fact that the dress wouldn’t be mine. I had a DM from one of my friends saying that I could start a group on facebook asking all our mates to donate some money and that it would be a wedding present from them all. I didn’t think anything would come of it but not long after the same friend DM’d me saying ‘check your email’ and there was a PayPal amount awaiting me – to cover the WHOLE amount for the dress. As you can imagine I cried and laughed and jumped for joy!”

The reception decor was all DIY including the bunting, 400 pinwheels (which they had instead of flowers on the tables as well as instead of traditional bouttonierres for the boys), the string ball decorations and all the table decorations. Instead of a traditional wedding cake, they had a cake competition where they asked their guests to bring a homemade cake. They had all kinds of entries including a barbie doll cake, apple and cinnamon muffins and sparkly cake pops.

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