I first laid eyes on Laura & Paul’s fabulous wedding when I saw a sneak peek on their photographer’s blog. Over the next few weeks I pretty much pestered their photographer Eliza Claire until she agreed to let me feature it – this is my favourite of all Eliza Claire‘s weddings to date!
Laura, a regular Rock n Roll Bride reader throughout their planning, was keen to add personal and alternative wedding touches throughout their day…and they certainly did that. It was also a lot down to Paul too, who really got stuck into the planning and the desire to create something unique.
“Paul was adamant from the start that he wanted our wedding to be personal to us,” Laura told me. “Your blog and Cosmopolitan Bride Magazine gave us the confidence that was hidden away to keep our wedding individual to us. There became a time when it spiralled and started to become ‘everyone else’s wedding’ but after the two of us sat down we got back on track and carried on with what we wanted. We didn’t want traditional bridesmaid dresses and were SO pleased with our choice. The girls looked stunning and so different to other bridesmaids we had seen at previous weddings.”
Laura had actually emailed me a few month’s back when she was having a bridesmaids dress crisis. I told her to not feel like she had to get a specific ‘bridesmaid dress’ for them and to go to the high street and buy them something beautiful. I’m ecstatic to say that she followed my advice and found these little beauties in New Look!
A few of my other favourite touches have got to be the ice cream parlour (with six choices of ice cream, miniature cones and edible glitter!) and the DIY service sheets based on gig flyers. The couple also made their own seating plan display from a piece of wood covered in Tanya Whelan Rosie Dot fabric, and place settings by tying them with lace to the stem of the wine glasses which they set with mismatched cups and saucers.
“We sourced our teacup centre pieces from charity shops and boot fairs. Honestly I have such an amazing husband he just kept coming home after work with fantastic finds! Paul’s mum and dad glued the teacups to the saucers so they wouldn’t topple when on the table. I think I was the florist’s worst nightmare when I explained how I wanted 3 stacked on top on each other.”
Laura wore a gorgeous short Ian Stuart‘ Cha Cha Cha’ dress and Paul chose a plum coloured Ben Sherman suit, which he wore with a floral shirt and a bow tie (“He looked so quirky and handsome!” Laura said.)
“I felt so strange when people kept asking what my colour scheme was. We didn’t have a colour scheme which is unusual in the wedding world! We were so pleased with how nothing matched yet everything went together perfectly. Advice for brides and grooms to be, keep it personal and your day will be as perfect as you are for each other.”
Finally, instead of a traditional gift list, the couple asked their guests to donate to their favourite charity. “Instead of getting us wedding presents we asked those guests that would like to do something for us donate that they can to Upendo. Upendo means “love” in Swaheli and the Upendo Orphans Support Project does just that. When we went to Kenya in January we stayed in Kilifi and it sunk in how fortunate we are – one of our friends that we met who worked at the hotel was saving for his wedding and was saving for 2 bags of grain and a goat which would feed his entire village. Our friend expected it would take 3 years for him to save up the £30 (yes thirty) required. We realised how fortunate we are to have not just each other, and our health, but to be able to afford the wedding we wanted. Our friend was more fortunate than many to have a job and to have children that were growing up and we wanted to do a little to help and, as well as sponsoring children to go to secondary school and sponsoring a young girl that lost her mother in January to HIV, we though this would be a good opportunity.”
“The money our guests very generously donated will allow Upendo to do something special and we are very grateful to them for their support.”
Wow wow wow. Huge thanks to photographer Eliza Claire and to Laura & Paul for sharing this gorgeous day with us.