Sri Lankan Jungle Wedding: Sarah & Craig

Chris Roe

April 25, 2013

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Sarah & Craig decided that the cold, sleet and snow of the UK just wanted going to cut it for their February wedding so they upped sticks and flew out to the Sri Lankan jungle instead! “Within those first few exciting days of engagement we came to the conclusion we would get married in Sri Lanka because we quite fancied going there, we could legally get married there and our parents/family/friends could backpack/5*resort/travel/package holiday there to their wishes”, explained the bride.

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“We then picked the area we wanted to go to which was Unawatuna. It has a bit of a laid back, backpacker, beach-ey vibe and Galle, a historic fort with boutique hotels. I spent hours researching accommodation in the area until I found Illuketia, a colonial tea plantation house set in a tropical garden.  We arranged to have the whole wedding there by email which could’ve been a bit risky! I did have a Bridezilla moment imagining we had booked an imaginary mozzie infested straw hut, but when we arrived to our wedding paradise it was all worth it.”

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With such a magnificent backdrop, little decor was needed but what they did have the couple DIYed themselves. Sarah makes laser perspex items such as jewellery and cake toppers for a living so obviously she did all of those. “I made the cake topper, monkey and elephant cocktail sticks and name necklaces/badges (for table names)”, she continued. “I also made bunting out of a vintage sari from eBay and for presents for the guests we had tote bags printed with my design filled with tea, rice and spices. I also made the chinese lanterns for everybody which some guests later let off at the beach after an impromptu after party at the Happy Banana disco. We also took loads of paper pom poms and roped some of our guests into fluffing them up the night before.”

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“We just did things our way and ignored most typical wedding traditions!” Sarah concluded. “We didn’t have a best man or bridesmaids, or flowers, or a first dance.  I had nothing borrowed or blue and we spent the morning before the wedding getting ready together (which was lovely). Instead we had wild monkeys, a spiritual fire dancer, monks, curry, hula hooping, a Sri Lankan band singing hilarious covers and we did an impromptu joint speech. Planning the wedding from afar meant that we didn’t get too caught up in the little details and had some unexpected surprises on the day that we just went with. We both love to travel so we always knew we would get married abroad and by going so far we knew that the guests who came really wanted to be there, which made it very special.”

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45 comments

  1. I was glued to the TV watching this last night and was really hoping this would be the one you featured. I love how it all came together and thought that becky made a stunning bride – fabulous dress and wonderful hair

  2. I’ve Sky + ed this one, so can’t wait to watch it now! It’s also really interesting to see the photos and how amazing they are, as that’s something the show NEVER focuses on. Good for Mike for standing up to the producers too!

  3. Sharon S.

    I love this! I didn’t see the show, but this is the cutest wedding ever! Love Love Love!

  4. Smee

    I felt sorry for the bridesmaid. She looked so uncomfortable with her hair and in that very tight dress. You can sense her discomfort just by looking at the photo at the top of this page.

  5. This is a really fun insight! I can take or leave the show, but it’s very interesting to know the answers to the questions everyone wants to know.

    NYC looked epic Kat!

    Congratulations to Mike and Becky xxx

  6. Louise

    I loved it! A friend of mine puled outf of DTtB because of the level of involvement of the production crew so it was fascinating to read an account of someone who had gone through it. Also the thing I loved, and this might seem a little thing, was her snazzy wrist brace! I wear have to wear wrist braces when my condition flares up and I have worried what I will do if I wake up on the day with gozzy wrists – now I know I can wear sparkly ones!

  7. Very interesting to hear the grooms side of the story. I have to admit that I haven’t watched any of the series this time over, although it is all sky + and ready to go. I just felt the whole thing was becoming way to predictable and each episode was the same format.
    I’m also very suspicious of TV shows manipulating people and making the whole thing appear how they want it to.

    Thanks for the post xx

  8. Iain

    @Louise – the designer who made the dress also made the cover to go over Becky’s wrist brace. Mike asked her to make it – a lovely touch

  9. I loved this episode, since they were such a lovely couple, but it’s kind of sad to know that the show producers and crew pull the strings so much! Not that I suspected any less, but still. I’m glad Mike fought to have his way, but I’m sorry it was so stressful for him!

    What I still want to know is if the groom tells the producers what sort of wedding he’s planning BEFORE the couple gets picked, so that they know how cool or not it’s going to be!

  10. Fantastic pics of a really unique wedding these pics will still tell the story of their big day when the show is gone and forgotten. Just jealous I didn’t get to shoot it

  11. It was an absolute pleasure making Becky’s dress – she and Mike were so lovely. The time pressure was just huge but seeing Alistair’s photos, reminds me it was totally worth those late nights of stitching!

  12. Oh my gosh I’m watching this at the moment and it is the most amazing wedding, these two are just adorable and so so in love! And I love the brides hair and make up!!! Love love love!!!

  13. Wow, it’s fantastic to hear some of the inside story! I haven’t seen this episode yet but looking forward to it, as it looks amazing. I was on a reality type of tv programme once and I’m sure I had to sign something saying I wasn’t meant to talk about the process or something, but great this groom can spill the beans and fill us in 🙂

  14. Sara

    This was the best ever; just what a wedding should be, really individual and about the people involved. Mike did a brilliant job fighting for just how he wanted it and Becky looked absolutely amazing. I so wish more people would do it this way!!! Every happiness to them both.

  15. I watched this tonight and the whole way through kept thinking, RockNRoll covered this, it had to be this one! I loved the hair, the groom is a sweetheart and the bride was a lovely down-to-earth girl! First DTTB that I haven’t been screaming at the TV “No, no, no, what are you doing you idiot?!”

    I am so going for giant hair when I get hitched! Only thing I didn’t like was the badly made butterflies. You can get much better feather versions on the internet as I use them for my fascinators.

    I hope the bride and groom have a very happy married life together! x

  16. Totally fascinating to hear the real story from behind the show, as I’ve often thought that there must be a potential for conflict with producers wanting to up the ante to make a more edgy show! Well Done Mike, for sticking to your guns and getting the wedding you wanted!

  17. Having read thios article, I am going to go and watch this episode – the photos look amazing – the whole weding screams personality and fun! Great to know how they put the show together behind the scenes too.

  18. telly type

    From someone who has experience of working in telly. I think the ‘pulling the strings’ comment is actually way out of proportion and context. It is very stressful for these boys organising weddings and the first people they lash out to would be the ones closest to them, the crew who have given him the £12k to plan his dream wedding. As part of their deal to take part they must not do/buy anything that the tv crew cannot film, hence why they must have permission to film in shops he wanted to go to. And if you want to say shop in Primark going through a head office for filming permission would take longer than day to do and may also say no. As for the money, if they production team gave the boys £12k in cash, do you really think they would make it to the wedding?

  19. bride to be

    Lol. It’s a gameshow at the end of the day, I’d love someone to give me £12,000 just to get married on tv…and they get mad discounts because of the filming. Get chosen because you say you are going to do a crazy wedding, don’t be surprised if the producers make you stick to your word!

  20. jane

    Was just wondering if you have a picture of your hair and I thought it was beautiful and want mine kinda the same.
    Or do you have a web page I can take a look at please
    Thank you

  21. i watched this last night and i got very annoyed that there was no drama, and everyone was really nice – i thought, wheres my bridezilla…. wheres my selfish groom….. nope! you are all really nice!! grrrr!!!

  22. I am really glad that you told it like it is! Me and my partner James often talk about how crazy it is that the groom doesn’t even know his brides dress size or will pick totally the different dress that she wanted. Makes so much more sense now! Ive known 2 people who have done don’t tell the bride and they have had amazing wedding so it cant all be that bad 🙂

  23. Megan Cassidy

    one of my all time favorite couples! both lovely people how really loved each other very much. 🙂

  24. Really interesting insight! I’ve watched quite a few episodes and wondered just how involved the production crew actually got and how realistic it was. Loved the theme and photos in this one.

  25. Tia-Lewise

    I’ve yet to see this episode, but damn, I really want to. I’m sick of all these floaty princesses and just want to see something both parties will like for once. That dress is fabulous.

  26. I reckon this would be my husband’s idea of a dream wedding…we thought we were bad ass just squeezing a clip of Nacho Libre into our cinema wedding! Well done to the groom for standing his ground and the bride’s hair and make up is ace. Love it!

  27. Daisy Crowe

    Darn, I would have loved to see this! Thank you for answering questions that we’ve all wondered about. Looks wonderful. Great photography and the whole “look” is awesome.
    One boring ask though…. I always wonder if some of the weddings shown are actually “legal” as when applying for the wedding licence, don’t both bride and groom have to apply, giving details of their chosen venue – so where’s the surprise in that? – as I said, a boring ask!

  28. Hey i would love to be on tv geting married. I just think its lovely watching people doing it. I turn a round and said to my fella i would love to be in that lol how do u get in it.

  29. becci

    I think these guys were lucky, as the guy was obviously strong willed. I know of another couple on here and the producers had already decided it all for them and it wasn’t what either of them wanted sadly 🙁

  30. Paul Storer

    I watch DTtB – a professional interest – I photograph weddings – most of the grooms seem to be focussed on what they want with their bride almost a second thought.

    Mike seemed to be the first groom for a long time who cared about his bride. I loved them both and hope they are still as happy.

    As for the organisation – I had the enjoyable honour of photographing the wedding featured on the children’s programme Marrying Mum and Dad – ( the Circus Wedding ) – the day was very stop start waiting for the production crew – I’d arranged to have some of the photographs taken in the same room used for the naked wrestling scene in Women In Love – was told there wasn’t time by the production team even though Sue and Jon ( B&G) were kept in the Church for 1 1/2 hours

  31. Anjali

    The Balloons look amazing too! I’m surprised that there is no name metioned for the balloon decorator! Their work is amazing!

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