Tag Archives: bridesmaids

Jo & Johan’s Eclectic Cocktail Party Wedding

Jo & Johan and we were married on the 25th of September in Brisbane, Australia. Their wedding was an eclectic mix of their own personal styling ideas.

“The wedding planning for me was a process of questioning absolutely everything that was the ‘norm’ when it comes to weddings,” Jo told me. “We kept the traditions that had value to us, but completely reinvented or simply discarded those that we felt were unnecessary. One of the very first decisions I made was that I knew I didn’t want to have a traditional bridal party. Instead, we asked all our guests to wear black and white, then our bridal party and immediate family members wore colour – that way they stood out as important, without having to be matchy-matchy. I’m so glad we did it, it was one of my favourite things about our wedding.”

The couple wanted an intimate and special chapel ceremony and so chose Broadway Chapel. Their criteria for their reception was to have a rockin’ cocktail party – not in anyway a traditional wedding reception – but finding their perfect venue was quite difficult, “We knew we wanted to have a cocktail style reception, because we wanted it to be casual and social. We finally found a converted warehouse called Lightspace which we fell in love with – and we were their first ever wedding!”

Jo’s dress came from Bridal on James and it was the very first dress she tried on. “The dress originally came in standard white and ivory, but the ladies there were brilliant and helped me source the perfect colour fabric,” the bride continued. “I’ve known pretty much all my life that I wouldn’t get married in a white dress, and I couldn’t be happier with what I ended up with! In fact, I tried on two other dresses that day, but that was it – I didn’t even bother looking elsewhere. It was quite liberating!”

Jo asked her bridesmaids to wear different dresses (I love this look!) and she tied their styling together with shoes from Novo (same style, different colours) and those awesome Chanel temporary tattoos. This idea RULES!

The couple wanted to make sure their reception décor and styling was perfect and so did a lot of the work themselves. “Decorating and event coordinating, I knew I had to put people I trusted in charge or I would just lose my mind with stress. Fortunately I have wonderfully creative, and generous friends who were there with me every step of the way. We had decided that I was going to walk down the aisle to “The Crane Wife 1 & 2″ by The Decemberists, so we decided that we wanted to use origami cranes as a bit of a motif for the whole wedding. Some friends and I all got together and made the origami cranes that hung from the ceiling at the reception, and from the pews at the ceremony, and one girlfriend made the beautiful origami flowers which adorned the reception venue. Our beautiful cake was also made by these girls at the last minute when my cake maker bailed on me. I also bought a lot of my diy decorating bits from Etsy. We didn’t have any flowers at the wedding (yet another tradition which felt pretty pointless to me), but I did carry a white rose (my mum’s favourite flower.)”

“One of the major money saving ventures that we made was to create a wedding website instead of posting out invitations. I did all the graphic design (in fact, I did the graphics for everything – the save the date cards, the order of service etc) and Johan did all the coding to make the website work. It was a really great way for us to combine our skills, and it meant we could have more contact with our guests, and were able to make the website really personal. A lot of both sides of our families live overseas, so we had sections on “getting to know” us, our family, and our bridal party – as well as all the important wedding details, and an RSVP section (which we loved, because nearly everyone RSVP’d within the first week!). The website was definitely another of our favourite things from the wedding.”

“Johan and I both have musical backgrounds, so when it came to the idea of a first dance, we decided instead to do a ‘first song’. We did our own version of Angus & Julia Stone’s ‘The Wedding Song’, and kept it a complete surprise (except to my matron of honour and her husband who we practiced in front of). It was such a special moment. Looking back on our wedding now, and I wouldn’t have changed a thing – I’m so glad we didn’t bow to traditions that didn’t mean anything to us. We have absolutely no regrets!”

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Alex & Adam’s Simple, Nerdy & Rocking Shindig

British born Alex met Adam years ago whilst working at Woolworth’s. She was studying journalism and he was a checkout boy by day, rock star by night! They went their separate ways for a few forgotten years before realising at a Jet gig that they were better off together. “We are the total yin and yang couple who jigsaw together in a strange and puzzling way which somehow works,” they explained. “Fiery Alex and passive Adam! Our wedding was a mashup of our two personalities which resulted in a simple, nerdy, unrefined yet rocking shindig.”

The ceremony took place at Flying Duck at Roma St Parkland and the reception was held at The Fox Hotel. Alex wore a one-of-a-kind dress which she made herself with the help of her best friend. “It was handmade with materials and pattern sourced from Spotlight Australia by my best buddy / best lady on the day. I’d probably say it’s most definitely a one off by ‘Sary Creations’ – she’d get quite a giggle from that,” laughed the bride. They also handmade her flower headband as well as all the bouquets with silk flowers sourced from FJ Flowers. The reception decor and details were all also mostly DIYed, from materials sourced from Spotlight Australia.

For special and personal touches, Alex’s Mother officiated the emotional ceremony and Adam’s brother acted as usher by dressing up as a Storm Trooper – random but seriously awesome I say! The Groom’s band, Fractions, played the reception as well as accompanying Alex and her Dad down the aisle. The couple’s first dance was a 4 minute ‘dance-off’ to The White Stripes, ‘Fell in Love with a Girl’ – no traditional wedding rubbish here! 

Isn’t this just the coolest wedding ever? I’m loving how 2011 is shaping up already.

♥  ♥  ♥

The fabulous, awesome and amazing (can you tell I love them quite a lot!) Seth & Tenielle of Feather & Stone Photography will be travelling around the USA from February to April and would love love love to shoot a Rock n Roll wedding whilst they’re out there. If you’d be interested in having photos as gorgeous as these for your wedding (with a rather large chance of also getting your wedding featured on the pages of Rock n Roll Bride I might add) then pleeeease get in touch with them by emailing info@featherandstone.com.au

They explain, “We’ll be flying into Cali early February 2011 and making our way to Seth’s old hang out in Florida (Seth is American born and bred) where we’ll be based for 6 – 8 weeks, but free to travel to other cities/states to shoot YOUR wedding.”

“If you’re having trouble finding a photographer that is available (that you actually like), here is your second chance! Yes, we’ve assumed everyone likes us. Why not? Ignorance is bliss!”

“So check out some of our work and drop us an email. It doesn’t matter if you’re a southern bell, DIY vintage bride, or an Elvis impersonator (PLEASE give us a call if you’re an Elvis impersonator) if photography is important to you then your people need to speak to our people.” 

♥  ♥  ♥

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Jeanie & Mike’s Dorky & Eclectic South African Wedding

Jeanie & Mike got hitched at the end of October at Old Oak Manor & Cafe Felix in Riebeek Kasteel, South Africa. The wedding had a thrown together, eclectic vibe inspired by the couple themselves. “I don’t know if I can classify myself as Rock n Roll, but definitely different and also somewhat dorky”, explained the bride. “I think we usually do most things different than the norm and we also have a lot of fun doing it. God is always my inspiration, in fact, he gave me the idea to create a coat of arms for my new family and I used it on the invitation and all the other stationary.” Jeanie has even since decided to go into business creating wedding stationary!

Jeanie wore a custom Ilse Roux dress, inspired by Vera Wang and on her feet she had the now infamous Vivienne Westwood Lady Dragon shoes! “The story of the shoes is actually quite amazing. The particular style that I was looking for was no longer available anywhere in the world. My mom in law phoned every Vivienne Westwood stockist in the The States, we tried on the web, but no luck. Until my step-mom from Australia phoned and asked me if I had found my shoes. I told her that it was impossible to find them. I was nearly defeated, but her determined voice on the other side of the phone gave me hope. A day later she found them from a stylist in Melbourne who was happy to lend them to me for the day. When we met up with them in Singapore a month before the wedding, My step-mom handed me the precious Vivienne Westwood Lady dragon hearts. Happiness. A couple of days later, I found the blue ones on the web from a greek fashionista that lives in Pretoria. She bought an extra pair “just in case” and were happy to sell them to me. Thanks Dad!”

Jeanie’s super stylish and super lucky bridesmaids all wore different dresses, “This was a miracle co-ordinated by God himself,” Jeanie explained. “One of them were made by a dressmaker in PTA, two from YDE and one from MEMEME in Long Street Cape Town by Doreen Southwood. Special mention to this designer – she is gold.” Their looks were all tied together with those gorgeous rosettes by Mikado, Jeanie and the maid of honour. I adore this unusual idea, it’s so much cooler than boring bridesmaid bouquets!

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Mia & Matt’s Super Kitsch, Super Gorgeous 1960’s Wedding

I think I possibly have one of the cutest weddings ever to round of today’s posts. When I first laid eyes on Mia & Matthew’s 60’s inspired wedding, I kid you not, I literally squealed with delight. How happy do these photos make you feel?! I KNOW! Adore…

The wedding took place in Devon at St Gregory’s RC Church in Kingskerswell. The reception then followed at Colehayes Park in Bovey Tracey, a Georgian House in beautiful grounds. As soon as the couple got engaged they knew their wedding would have a 60’s theme. Mia is obsessed with everything from this era and even had her dress made by a friend to an authentic 1960’s dress pattern. Mia explained, “I’m obsessed with vintage so it had to be that way! I also wore a floral headband of golden coloured alstroemeria which was made by our florist, gold t-bar sandals which I found in the Miss KG by Kurt Geiger. I wore yellow plastic daisy earrings from Spitalfields Market, a silver engraved locket which Matt gave me on the morning of our wedding and an amazing wedding cartoon bracelet which I bought from Da Da Dreams on Etsy. My sister also gave me a lovely bluebird bracelet and matching garter on the morning of the wedding, which she’d had handmade for me. They’re amazing! In the evening I changed into a 1960s lace mini dress with cape which I found on Ebay and borrowed a vintage faux fur cape from my sister.”

They hired two 1960’s Rolls Royce’s and at the reception they played nothing but 60’s music. The bridesmaids even wore authentic 1960’s vintage dresses. “Finding the bridesmaids dresses was a real mission,” Mia told me. “I wanted them all in vintage pastel maxi dresses and we searched high and low to find the perfect ones. We got there eventually! My sister Becca, friend Emma and friend Corinne all found dresses on Etsy but and my friend Daisy was really struggling to find anything right when my grandma donated a dress which happened to be sitting in the back of her wardrobe! It’s the blue bridesmaid dress and it fitted her perfectly. I love that my grandma used to wear it. To make the dresses all work together I bought some white daisy trim from Ebay to add to the edges.”

The rest of the wedding was all DIY including the cake, with each layer being made by a different person. “My sister and chief Bridesmaid, Becca, made the main cake – a 2 layer chocolate sponge with yellow buttercream icing and iced orange butterflies, and my Grandma made matching vanilla cupcakes. And my mum made a fruitcake too. I was chief kitchen assistant!” Mia laughed.

To get everyone talking, the couple hosted a quiz all about themselves. The bought some old trophies in a junk shop and decorated them with their faces to give out as prizes! They also made personalised snowglobes to act as super kitsch placenames. “We bought a job lot of DIY snowglobe kits from Baker Ross Educational Supplies and put a photo of Matt and I inside with all the guests names printed on,” said Mia. “It took me, Matt, my mum and dad about 6 hours to make them but it was worth it as everyone had something cute to take home!”

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Patti & Frank’s Tattoo-Heavy, DIY-Crazy, Totally Rock n Roll Wedding

Patti & Frank are just the epitome of Rock n Roll Bride! Whenever people ask me what my favourite type of weddings are, weddings like this one are what I describe – tattoos, DIY, short wedding dresses, fabulous bridesmaids and happy, smiling faces!

Patti wore an original 1950’s vintage dress, awesome shoes by Harajuku Lovers and feathers in hair.  “I originally spent $2,000 on a custom made dress which I had designed myself,” the bride told me. “Well I had someone who specialized in wedding dresses make it  (first problem) and I guess our vision was not the same and I didn’t like what she made at all! I went to Cambridge Antique market looking for some vintage brooches to jazz it up and the first thing I saw see when I turned the corner was this dress. I think it had a light shining on it with my name! It was meant to be and just a week before the wedding and it fit like a glove! Oh and the best part? It only cost me $150!”

Not wanting to completely ignore the original dress that she had spent so much time and money on, Patti asked her friend Kara to cut the custom made dress shorter. To this she added some black bows and voila! it became her after party dress!

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Under the Spotlight – AriaDress

When it comes to looking for your perfect wedding dress, a lot of Rock n Roll Brides are now heading online to see if they can get their dream gown at a fraction of the price. My worry with this has always been that you might end up with a substandard ‘knock off’ dress that isn’t of the quality that you deserve for your big day. You know what they say, “pay cheap, pay twice…”

However I’m excited to say that I’ve found an exception to this rule! I was contacted by AriaDress a few weeks ago and I have not only been blown away but the quality of work and design that goes into every one of their bespoke gowns, but at prices significantly less than you’d expect! Can you believe you can get a dress as gorgeous as these for under $500!?

I got chatting to designer Tak Hau last week about his passion, his inspiration and his love of creating simply stunning gowns for brides and bridesmaids. I hope you enjoy reading all about it. He really is a wonderfully talented man and I’m so thrilled to be showcasing his brand new Spring 2011 collection on Rock n Roll Bride.

Who are you and what do you do?
I am Tak Hau, the designer and creative director of AriaDress, a company I started nine years ago to bring style and sophistication where it was really needed – in the bridesmaid dress category. Now, we also do wedding gowns. I started out designing cocktail dresses in the 1980s, under my own label and others, which were sold in boutiques and the top department stores in the USA.

What made you want to get into Bridal fashion?
Being a designer in the dress business for a long time, I began to think of a category that I could build into a new and viable business. I started to be more aware of bridal fashions, and noticed there was a lack of modern bridesmaid dresses that were affordable, or that didn’t look like the truly awful bridesmaid dress Melanie Griffith wore in the film, Working Girl. Remember that, with all the powder blue chiffon? It didn’t seem much had progressed since then.

Before I started AriaDress, you either had to pay a lot of money for bridesmaid dresses or they were that ugly! So I discovered this niche that needed modern, affordable, high quality dresses – there were none 10 years ago – and we took off almost as soon as we were on the web.

Someone who is asked to be a bridesmaid can dread the experience because of the dress. I decided to make AriaDress as close-to-custom as possible, so each bridesmaid could choose what fits her best and the dresses could be made all in one color. It’s really very easy to switch a bodice with a skirt, for all different sizes, and make a bridesmaid feel really great to appear in the dress.

That was my goal. We just introduced wedding gowns this year, for Spring 2010, and use the same concept of allowing our brides to choose any neckline to go with any skirt silhouette, using the same designs from the bridesmaid’s collection. In pure silk, fully lined, with the quality of made in the USA construction, a bride with more style than cash can have a really pretty gown for under $500 – and use the thousands of dollars that seem be the cost of a one-day wedding gown, towards a house, or a honeymoon, or sometimes, a baby.

I’m happy to make that possible!

What are your influences?
Audrey Hepburn is my muse – she’s a classic. I’ve never seen her in an outfit that looks bad or silly at any point in time. You can see her in the 70s, the 80s and she always looks right.

That’s what dresses from AriaDress are all about. I want my dresses to never look silly at any point in time.

I get a lot of ideas from watching old movies. Movies from the ‘20s and ‘30s give me many ideas, and put me in a world where I start conceptualizing a design. I was watching a movie about a woman that was a showgirl, and had this beautiful dress with a fishtail mermaid skirt, all ruffley, very girly and pretty. And it gave me the whole idea for my new designs for Spring.

Our dresses have been very structural, very linear – which was necessary to tone down the overdone styling in these kinds of dresses. But that movie, and the times, made me think of doing something more organic and more flowing for next season, Spring 2011.

For us, it’s new. I’m softening up the look to be more feminine, girly, and body conscious. I love using a single ruffle, never overdoing it, to jazz up the dress, and I’ve brought in a Short Trumpet skirt, which is very flirtatious and works beautifully at knee-length, or even a little longer.

Color, of course, is a big influence. I’m drawn to purples and blues, greens, and the cooler shades this season.

Whose work do you really admire?
Donna Karan. I like her aesthetics and point of view. She’s very modern. Her clothes are never trendy. I don’t like trendy things. She’s a true artist and her clothes reflect that – every piece of clothing she makes is a piece of art.

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