Category Archives: British Brides

Lou & Chris’ Simple & Family-Central Vintage Wedding

What’s this? Another awesome wedding from my photographer buddy Assassynation? Yep that’s right people, Sassy (aka Assassynation) really does get some of the very best wedding around…and the most awesome thing is many of them are Rock n Roll Bride readers so I get to then share them with you all afterwards. Yeey.

Lou & Chris had a simple wedding in London…and by simple I mean no fuss, no drama – just an awesome and super stylist day! They were married at Stoke Newington Town Hall, London which they followed up with a reception at The Londesborough pub, also in Stoke Newington.

“Our dream wedding was just a handful of family and close friends and a quiet registry office service,” the bride told me. “In all honesty, I was terrified of walking down the aisle and hated the idea of speeches. But we both have big families so, when we wrote down our list of essential guests, we realised that a small wedding was simply not an option. Instead, we decided to make it as personal as possible. We both work in magazines but were intimidated by the ideas in a lot of wedding magazines – we simply didn’t have the budget or the inclination to have a big swanky bash. Thankfully, I found Rock n Roll Bride just in the nick of time and realised that it was fine to do things differently – big relief!”

“We’re not religious so didn’t want to marry in a church and we didn’t fancy a hotel either,” Lou continued. “We looked at loads of venues in London and Yorkshire, where I’m from, from barns to restaurants to even an art gallery. Then we found the perfect place five minutes from where we lived. Stoke Newington Town Hall had recently been renovated and, every time we walked past and saw the grand pillars and art deco details, we’d both smile. When we had a wander around inside, we were equally blown away by it. We struck gold when we found the reception venue, The Londesborough – a gastro pub just down the road. Neither of us were interested in formalities or stuffiness and didn’t buy into the whole ‘princess for a day’ thing – we just wanted the whole day to be full of meaning for us and for it to be fun for our guests. Thankfully, the pub’s owners, Patrick and Greg Wright, were on our wavelength and happily allowed us to adorn the pub with homemade bunting and flower arrangements.”

“We tried to use local suppliers. Chris designed our invites and we used a local printer. The florist was also just down the road from our flat. We also had the idea of using old books as place settings as they’d double as favours and give people something to talk about at the meal. I had a romantic notion about DIY-ing and envisaged myself wafting around serenely, creating all these wonderful little bits. It was actually bloody hard work and I spent many weekends hunched over my sewing machine making metres of bunting and matching cushions. Thankfully, my sister helped out with sewing but I had to buy some extra in – the Mr and Mrs Smith bunting and the outdoor stuff was all bought in a panic the week before the wedding, as well as some extra cushions from Primark.”

“We made all the table names and also the place settings which we made by by writing names on parcel tags, putting them on raffia and then wrapping the raffia around the books. We got books from second hand book shops as well as purging my dad and gran’s book collections and we got a load of racy romance novels from the library – they were being sold off for 20p a book. We spent £20 max on the place settings and nearly all of them were taken home so they were definitely a success! We also saved money by using jam jars instead of buying vases for the reception flowers and dressed them up by wrapping raffia around them. Simple but really pretty.”

Lou went to my favourite dress shop for her vintage wedding dress, Fur Coat No Knickers in London. She explained, “When it came to my outfit, I always knew that I didn’t want a long dress. When I walked into FCNK, I completely fell in love – both with the dresses and with Laura and Emma, who run the shop. They are both so talented. At first, I’d thought that I’d go with a prom style dress but then I tried on a long fifties number and they showed me how they could transform it into a wiggle dress complete with a sash and funky ‘Priscilla Presley- style short veil. At every fitting I felt so comfortable in it and, on the wedding day, I even felt confident enough to make a speech.” Lou teamed her dress with shoes from Rachel Simpson and jewellery which was a gift from her Gran.

The photography was also really important to the couple, and I’m so excited that they picked one of my favourite ladies to shoot the day for them. “With the photography, it was important to us that the pictures captured the essence of the day and Sassy of Assassynation did not disappoint. She is such a calm person and she caught some really special moments, as well as all the fun bits, the decoration details and creating some really stylish shots too. We also had a little film produced by Frank Millar, which he set to our wedding music, and which makes us laugh and cry in equal measures. Everyone said how hard working and easy to get along with both Sassy and Frank were. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them.”

“Lots of people said that it was a very relaxed, fun wedding and I think that’s because we stayed true to ourselves and tried not to care what anyone thought,” concluded Lou. “On the day, the things that I’d worried about were my favourite part – walking down the aisle towards Chris was amazing and the ceremony was truly the happiest time of my life. Close friends did readings and my sister’s boyfriend Ian performed ‘It Must be Love’ by Labi Siffre. It was just perfect and really uplifting and I’m so glad that we followed our hearts. Our families and friends were amazing with helping us out. My mum organised the reception flowers – she brought down loads of flowers from her garden and did the arrangements the afternoon before the wedding, with help from Chris’ mum. And our families also helped us decorate the pub on Friday afternoon. Chris and his brother were out in pouring rain, putting up fairy lights in the garden, while the mums did the flowers and me, my dad, sister, auntie, my new sister in law Laura and one of our best mates clambered over chairs to pin up the bunting.”

“To me, that summed up the whole wedding – it was about two families joining together and it was really, really special. Not everything went according to plan – our shoes got trashed and we have a sneaking suspicion that no one remembered to turn on the fairy lights in the garden but we were having too much fun dancing to care! Our wedding day was messy and imperfect but it was real and so much fun and we wouldn’t have had it any other way.”

Yey!! This wedding makes me so happy. Don’t forget to check out the video too…wow.

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Regula & Bruno’s Creative, Spooky & Wonderful Wedding (Part One)

Regula & Bruno rock my world”…that’s how photographer Assassynation introduced me to this bad ass couple when she sent me their wedding. The pair are from Belgium but wanted to be married in England. Their ceremony day was followed by a tea party reception and spooky photo shoot in an abandoned fairground (!) in their home country a few weeks later. Luckily for us all, this second part took place just last weekend and believe me, I’m going to be featuring it just as soon as the photos are ready!

But for now, it’s all about the ceremony…

“Bruno and I met in the most romantic way… he drew me a portrait and left it for me to find,” Regula wrote, introducing their story to me. “I still don’t know what it was but the drawing just captured me, it moved me deeply. A few months later we met for the first time and the rest is history.”

“We always said if we got married it would be for us and not for something or someone else. We wanted it to be totally us and real, not something you pick out of a catalogue. Eloping was always our dream. We were together for 5 years when Bruno popped the question on a dramatic cliff in Cornwall June 2010. It was perfect.”

“We chose to get married in England and not Belgium,” the bride continued. “I’ve been on countless family holidays to England when I was a child and absolutely loved it. In fact, when I was a toddler I had one wish ‘to go to England’. We have a nursery rhyme in Belgium that tells the story of black and white swans protecting England, England being a small Island surrounded by a great wall with a door with a big padlock. But no one could enter because the key of the padlock was broken …Years later I found out that the song was about heaven and not England! But nevertheless I was captivated by it for many, many years!”

“When Bruno and I first went to visit the UK together I was excited to say the least to find out he actually loved it too! We found our home away from home in Rye, East Sussex. So when Bruno mentioned us marrying in Rye I was completely over the moon! It felt so right, so us. We tailored the ceremony completely to our needs and were allowed to bring in as much personal touches as we wanted. This would have been impossible in Belgium. Our wedding rings were held by a silver apple Bruno gave to me when we were together for a month, apples have special meaning to us, apart from being my favourite fruit. When we were together for a week I got a real red apple, after a month I got a silver one. Mind you, I’m still waiting for the gold one! The ceremony was intimate and emotional. We only had a few people there that day.”

“Many people have found us strange, always wearing black, collecting strange antiques, comics and constantly working on stuff together. We both are creative people, being graphic designers by profession and Bruno being an illustrator in the evenings. I’m a food blogger in the evening, that is when I’m not being Bruno’s muse. Being creative is the most important thing in our lives, we both enjoy creating things. Every year for Christmas we make a special Christmas card, this takes weeks of brainstorming and hours to make and we love it. Designing our wedding invitation therefore was the biggest challenge of all time. We had fun with it, putting all that we are in it. Some things were clear to most and some things were hidden and for us to know.  We’ve spent months making and designing everything, constantly challenging each other with new ideas.”

“We wanted to customize all of our wedding, Bruno’s suit was bespoke and I secretly had them add the red stitching on his buttonhole to match my red dress. I had two dresses in the end. I had a lace off-white vintage 50’s dress because I had a doll’s dress just like it when was a child and always wanted a dress just like it to get married in. So I searched all over the internet and the vintage shops of London for it.  I found it but it didn’t get altered in time so I had to have a back up. If I had to choose a new dress I didn’t want it to be white and I chose red, being my favourite colour. I made a drawing of how I wanted the dress to look and decided to go with Candy Anthony. I added the tulle overlay and had them alter it to match the drawing I made. The quality of their work and finish is outstanding. Being a perfectionist this was very important to me! But in the end I had two dresses, so I wore the vintage one for our wedding dinner that night.  Our wedding rings were made by Edward Williams, a real pirate and the most friendly guy in Cornwall. I can’t believe how many lovely people we met in the UK, organizing our wedding.”

“After the wedding ceremony we went to the pub for a pint, just what we wanted after our wedding. The town crier made sure we got there in one piece although I’m sure we knew the way better than he did after we saw him secretly drinking his pocket flask. He was such a nice fellow, when we past the old church he stopped and told us that he and his wife got married there over 60 years ago and are still happily so. You could see he loved weddings!”

“When we finished our pint, we went off to do some pictures with my lovely friend Sassy from Assassynation and Frank from Sassy ‘n’ Frank was doing our video. We had such good fun, the weather wasn’t very pleasant at times but they made us forget all about that. It started to rain heavily when it was time for a cream tea, a perfect way to end the day. With a scone in your piehole and a tea in your hand.The next day we left for our Honeymoon to lovely Cornwall.”

Don’t Regula’s words just transport you there with them? Just you wait until you see the rest of the photos and of course the AAAAMAZING video from Sassy ‘n’ Frank. Spooky and wonderful – the perfect way to showcase this epic wedding. Have you ever seen anything so cool?

…Oh and hello? can we all just die a little bit over the fact that Regula carried red balloons instead of a floral bouquet!? Love this!
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Anne-Marie & Jonny’s Ad Hoc, Budget & Vintage Wedding

Anne-Marie met Jonny at a gig 5 years ago, “I was 35 and old enough to know better. He was 23 and had no excuse,” laughed the bride. “Within a year we’d shacked up together and had our first child, with a second one following 19 months later. We got engaged on New Year’s Eve 2010 (lots of fireworks!) and married on my 40th birthday and it was better than any present could ever be.”

The couple planned their wedding on a shoestring, making as many beautiful details themselves as they could. They also had a lot of help from their friends and families. “We wanted to get married in the same way we live our lives, e.g. low-fi, low-budget, and surrounded by lots of lovely, creative friends and family,” Anne-Marie continued. “Everyone collaborated to make the day happen: my friend Frances made the cakes for the champagne reception at my house, my friend Sam made yards of bunting, my sister Lisa made the ‘AMP & JOHNNY’ sign and the little swallows and fabric baubles that decorated the hall for the party, lots of people DJed and my friend Soshanna made the most exquisite sugar-flower-strewn, three-tier wedding cake I’ve ever seen.”

Their day was casual and perfect for them, “We didn’t really have a theme: in fact we barely thought about it until we realised it was less than a month away. It was then a mad dash to arrange everything. The invites (coming from the US) were held up at UK customs and didn’t arrive until a week before the big day! For the reception I wanted a village hall feel, with lots of bunting and a cake display, but that was the only bit that was planned. Otherwise it was just… ad hoc vintage.”

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Melissa & Jon’s Alice in Wonderland, Camden Wedding

“The theme of our wedding ended up as a sort of mish-mash of Mad Hatters tea party, 1940’s/50’s and Camden weirdness (Camden is an area of London known for it’s alternative culture – great for people watching!), which fitted our personalities perfectly” newlywed Melissa told me. She married Jonathan at Islington Town Hall and afterwards had their reception in a hotel in Camden, where they first met.

“My inspiration firstly came from Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland,” Melissa continued. “Jon and I went to see the film when we were dating and I fell in love with it, I’d always been a fan of the book as a child but the film had me hooked. As soon as Jon proposed I knew I would want a touch of Alice involved somewhere within the wedding, the only difficulty was going to be fitting the theme around our tiny budget.”

“We’re not one for tradition and we tend to follow our own rules in life so we thought ‘well why should our wedding be any different’  Although the venues were booked around 6 months in advance everything else was left to the last minute, our decorations and centre pieces were DIY and we had an awful lot of help from our bridesmaids.”

“I totally recommend making centre pieces yourself and decorations. It saves so much money (which was crucial for us as we were on an amazingly tight budget) and gives the wedding a real personal feel. I really couldn’t have done any of it without the support and help of my family and bridesmaids.”

The bride and her bridesmaid’s all wore dresses from Rock n Roll Bride favourite, Vivien of Holloway and Melissa wore (another Rock n Roll bride favourite!) those Vivienne Westwood/Melissa heart shoes.

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Anthony & Collette’s Laid Back & Timeless Wedding

Anthony & Collette were married at South Farm in Hertfordshire. They wanted their day to be laid back and timeless, so a matchy-matchy or strong theme really wasn’t for them. “We took our inspiration from a few different sources,” the bride told me. “We wanted it to be quite understated but not boring.”

“We didn’t so obviously want to have a things match or have a recognisable theme.  We did, however, want everything to complement each other. Kind of like how my wedding ring and engagement ring contrasted but complemented each other – a traditional white diamond engagement ring with a black diamond ‘eternity’ wedding ring.”

Collette wore a dress by Temperley which she found in the flagship store in Notting Hill, London. It was ready to wear but she had the sleeves shortened to suit her more. She accessorised with Chie Mihara shoes which she had sent over from Spain (as she couldn’t get the colour she wanted in this country) a hair clip from Anthropologie in Kings Road London and a beaded Vintage bag from antique fair held at Hammersmith Town Hall.

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A Short Black Wedding Dress – Sarah & Adam’s My Chemical Romance

I’ll be honest, I’ve been looking forward to seeing Sarah & Adam’s wedding for an absolute age. You see, I saw Sarah’s incredible black wedding dress many times before the event, when I popped into see my girls at Fur Coat No Knickers in London. Laura & Emma showed the dress to me and told me I’d love the bride that has bought it – that she was cute and tattooed and wearing a black veil to match…and oh boy we’re they right! So without further ado…

“I would describe our wedding theme as American vintage,” Sarah told me. “With pretty carnival fairy lights, sweets and good music. Music was at the heart of our wedding. As My Chemical Romance’s biggest fan I had to walk down the aisle to their music (Desert Song) and we had songs that meant a lot to us throughout the day. From the music guests arrived to including Radiohead and Libertines, to the reading my Mum read during the ceremony (Bob Dylan’s Wedding Song), music playing constantly at the bar and during the meal.”

“We wanted a big wedding with all of our friends and family but it still had to feel personal and intimate, we had a little bit of us in every aspect of the day – from the Lost references, the comic book references and the music. People who didn’t get those little details could still enjoy them but those who understood them got that little something extra from the day and we always felt like the day was ‘us’ through and through.”

“We did all of the table decorations ourselves, tying ribbon around old jam jars and coffee jars to brighten them up and filling them with colourful sweets. We used blackboard paint and chalk for the table names.  We also designed the table plan ourselves. We had empty Coke bottles dotted around the bar with some simple flowers from Camden Market placed in them. I bought an old vanity case from Camden market and wrapped silk flowers and luggage tags to it to use as a gift box.”

Don’t you just love these guys?

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