Tina and Dave were married at The Grand Pier, Weston Super Mare. Their wedding was a colourful mix of all the things they love. “Tina and I met in the summer of 2010 on a booze cruise organised by our workplace”, wrote Dave. “She arrived with her pink hair in curls wearing a 50s polka dot dress, tattoo print shoes and red lipstick. I fell in love that night.”
“We called our wedding ‘Dreamboats and Petticoats’ and the theme was Rock n Roll meets the seaside”, Tina continued. “I’m a great fan of music of the 50s and when I met Dave I was surprised that he knew all of the songs as well. Dave was brought up by parents who love Rock n Roll and grew up in this era. After we watched the stage show Dreamboats and Petticoats we agreed that if we ever got married we’d love to have this as the theme for our wedding. After Dave proposed in 2012, we couldn’t wait to start planning our themed wedding.”
“Not sure how we were going to make it work we began looking for venues that would bring our theme to life and after we’d taken our first look around the Grand Pier we knew it was the one We wanted to be as true to our theme as possible, and as we both like to be different we didn’t mind if this meant sacrificing a few wedding traditions I used the Pier train to take the bridal party and myself down the length of the Pier, which was so much fun as members of the public waved and took photographs. The bridesmaids wore cotton candy striped dresses and Dave designed his 50s inspired suit online.”
Liz and Bryan were married at the famous Madonna Inn in California. The day was a beautiful mish-mash of a vintage candy store and a retro tattoo shop. “We really wanted to keep our wedding upbeat and light-hearted”, wrote the bride. “I think the temporary tattoos, candy, giant wood cut outs and photo booth helped create a really fun environment. Halfway through the night the photo booth props became a part of the wedding and we had groomsmen in capes and dresses as the Hulk and Spiderman on the dance floor. It made the pictures hilarious.”
“The inspiration for our wedding came from two places.”, she continued. “First we began visiting a tattoo shop in SLO everytime we drove up the coast to do wedding planning. Bryan got work done on his two sleeves bit by bit and we ended up taking part of our engagement pics in the shop. I got our wedding date tattooed on my wrist during the shoot too. Secondly I’m a painter and love bright candy colors and all things cute and Bryan is a hot rod guy always outside working on his 54 Ford Customline. So our wedding ended up looking like a vintage candy shop that you could get tattooed in! We had ‘candy girls’ instead of flower girls that passed out candy as they walked down the aisle. Our super hero nephew was the ring bearer and wore a black and white striped vest and a black cape. We did not do any traditional dances but we did have my 85 year old Grandma lead all the ladies in the Chicken dance.”
“Colin and I have been together for almost 7 years and thought it was about time that we tied the knot,” read the email I received from newlywed Amanda last week. “Unlike most women, I don’t think I ever really dreamed of what my wedding would be like so I didn’t really know where to start when it came to the planning. I’m a complete control freak and knew that I wanted to make and take part in creating as much for the wedding that I could so I started looking for inspiration on various websites and in books.”
“We knew that we wanted a few things for certain: a great photographer (or 2) to capture every grin, tear and laugh; a sweetie buffet; lots of handmade touches; fairy lights (and lots of them!); cupcakes; photo booth; a black and white wedding with splashes of colour; a hand fastening ceremony; confetti and sparklers.”
From these simple ideas they created the stunning wedding you see on these pages! “Colin was really eager to have a hand fastening ceremony and we both wanted to involve our family in the ceremony as much as possible,” continued the bride. “It was so important to us that we showed our love and appreciation for our family and this was the perfect way to not only add a splash of colour but it was also to show them exactly how much they mean to us.”
“I am lucky enough to have a small business called Hungry Designs and through this I have made a lot of wonderful creative friends. This made the task of making my wedding handmade and fun on a budget possible. My wedding dress (and the bridesmaid’s dresses) was created by the oh-so-talented Rebecca Cobbing from Rebecca Cobbing Couture. Rebecca is a truly spectacular designer who is also a dear friend. Rebecca and I discussed what dress I wanted in great detail and Rebecca came up with the design. It was out of this world and even included some of Rebecca’s trademark black matte satin material at the base of the dress. I really wanted the bridesmaid’s dresses to be black. I really see little point in having the two dresses designed for them to only be worn once – the intention was that Steph and Cat could wear the dresses again and again and not just at the wedding.”
“The origami flowers were all made by my very talented friend Gill from Catamation. Gill was so helpful and knew exactly what I wanted. She folded over 200 flowers for the wedding and these flowers were used for the bouquets, hair accessories and the table centres. The table settings and centers were a mix of colour, vintage and brightly painted candle sticks were dotted around in the middle of the tables and tea lights littered the tables with mood lighting. The napkins were folded into big white bows and the guests were given either a bag of hand sewn jelly beans or homemade strawberry lip balm – that was made by myself and Colin’s Aunty Jeannie.”
“Colin has a massive sweet tooth and I love to bake so we really wanted to have a sweetie buffet at the reception. We thought this would be the perfect setting for the colourful cupcakes and cutting cake. The cutting cake was rainbow sponge in the middle – perfecting tying the hand fastening ceremony into the reception. The cake topper was hand drawn by me and laser cut from wood and the cake bunting was found on Etsy. The paper bags were stamped with a rubber stamp that was especially carved for us by Kozue and the vintage cake server and forks were stamped with our wedding date and Just Married as well as Mr and Mrs – these were ordered from Wooden Hive.”
“Our wedding was relatively small – with only 48 guests attending both the ceremony and reception. This meant they all spent lots of time in the photo booth. This was a great last minute addition to the wedding and meant that not only were the guests able to busy themselves between meals but also meant that out guestbook was filled with hilarious photos from the booth. There is absolutely nothing that I would change about the wedding. Everything was perfect and the guests had a ball, when they weren’t on the dance floor they were in the photo booth or enjoying some sweets and wine. When looking back at the photos it really does bring back all of the feelings from the day. It was the best night of our lives and we couldn’t have asked for a better day.”
Amy & Jonathan were married in May, in a cute village hall wedding. The couple clearly put a lot of love, thought and detail into their wedding as you can see from the incredible reception images! The whole thing ties together so beautifully – the bunting, the sweets, the cake, the flowers, the mismatched tea cups…I just love it all!
The ceremony was held in Kington St Michael Church, Wiltshire and the reception that followed was at Kington St Michael Village Hall. “We tried to do as much as possible ourselves so the wedding would be as personal as possible,” explained the couple. “We had our wedding in church and then walked across the road to the village hall which we had decorated the day before with our family and friends. It made the day very personal and very different. We hung bunting that a friend had lent us, fairy lights, union jack flags etc and had jam jars of flowers on the tables. We made favours of jam and chutney that doubled as place names.”
“We tried to keep things fairly traditional but with our own spin on it and we tried not to be limited by what a wedding “should” be. So many weddings seem like the same thing over and over but we wanted ours to stand out. We made summer berries gin for the toasts by adding raspberries, strawberries and blackberries to gin with sugar and letting it sit for four months. Then we removed the fruit and we had pink gin! I also made the cake topper after a visit to Hobbycraft!”
Amy wore a stunning vintage lace dress which she found on eBay. She added her own personal touches to it by adding a silk dress underneath made by Alison Miles.
This is one of those posts that’s going to have a lot of photographs (hello, burlesque Rock n Roll wedding – there’s no way I could leave any out!) When photographer Marianne Taylor showed me a sneak peek of Sophie & Jonny’s wedding a few weeks ago, I knew straight away that they were right up my street…you’ll see why!
The couple got engaged in Paris on Sophie’s Birthday. “It was a dream come true,” the bride told me “Jonny had booked us into a plush Moulin Rouge themed hotel. We sat on the steps of the Sacre Coeur and drank pink champagne and then he surprised me some more with tickets to the Moulin Rouge that night! I had no idea that he had not only secretly booked the trip but also tickets to The Moulin Rouge. My favourite film and as a burlesque fanatic, this was perfect. At the end of the show, on the red carpet, I was surprised with a box which I unwrapped to find a smaller box. Upon opening the small box and finding my Princess cut platinum ring (perfect!) he got down on one knee in front of everyone and asked me to marry him, to which I screamed and replied yes!”
The Paris proposal and Sophie’s love of all things 1940s and 50’s (she is a burlesque dancer herself) inspired the entire wedding which was a real DIY effort. She sourced the white ostrich feathers for a burlesque theme and the ‘Eiffel tower’ vases herself and set everything up for the reception. She also designed and made all the stationary and paper goods as well as helping out to make the cake. Instead of a guest book they dressed a vintage looking birdcage (found in a boutique shop) with feathers and pearls and had little black and white cards for people to write messages on and post them in the birdcage.
I love how many UK weddings I’ve been featuring recently. It’s not just my American friends who have rockin’ weddings anymore. Go team GB!
Gemma & Liam’s super stylish, vintage-inspired wedding took place at the moody and dramatic venue of the 13th century George Vaults, Rochester. Just from seeing Gemma’s incredible Fur Coat No Knickers dress and Irregular Choice shoes I knew their wedding would be a beaut. Enjoy these beautiful images people!
An excitable email from a newly married reader always brightens my day and LeeAnn’s may have been one of the most excitable I’ve received in a while! I just had to share the story behind her and husband David’s gorgeous 1950’s influenced wedding with you today.
“After gorging my eyes on a ga-jillion bridal mags and internet images, I felt I was living a white-out groundhog day” LeeAnn began. “I quickly became downhearted about organising my own BIG DAY, the no-fun casting my eye over “traditional” gowns (this one? no, that one? no, repeat), the vanilla-ness of invites, pink-and-white themes to the power of 42,000! Where did the love go?”
“I think it was a Wednesday and my heart stood still….stopped, popped, blew up and nearly burst with love at the teeniest tiniest little picture of a 50’s style wedding dress! The simplicity, the classic lines, the Frou-Frou…No other designer, strapless, flowing, ruched, lace, beaded, train or no train gown was going to be the winner! This was IT for me! Even better than this, the prospect of “ankle-age” (showing off one’s ankles) and the Shoes! The Shoes! (Oh! Heart! Don’t fail me now!) Enter, stage left, Lisa of Dragonfly Dress Design in Glasgow, who put my ponderings to paper and really really listened to all my wishin’ and hopin’ that I could pull off such a beautifully timeless gown, perhaps, perhaps, perhaps? And so began my love affair with tulle…the gown she handmade for me, words just cant explain how awesome I felt wearing it, and I just adored the teeny little birdcage veil she also worked her magic on. What a woman!”
“Soon came the realisation that a bridal gown like this went hand-in-hand with songs of yesteryear that I love, Dion’s ‘Runaround Sue’ and Little Anthony’s ‘Tears on my Pillow’ being two of my all time Top 10. They may not be specifically linked with the 50’s, but the images they evoke in my mind when I hear them and singalong, I think I had a major Light-bulb moment when I pictured myself in my dress. The Jigsaw came together relatively easy after that. David was cool with all I suggested and put forward (I did give him some input, honest), the look of horror on parents and grandparents faces when I explained I was doing something “a wee bit different” to the norm. It actually became a delight to seek out the alternative.”
So I was going to blog this next week but I literally can’t wait. I saw Annette & Brian’s totally gorgeous wedding on my friend Micheal Antonia’s (aka the dj extroidinate behind The Flashdance) blog and like the lightning bolt that I am (when I come across something that’s as awesome as this) I was straight in there with my request to feature it. So, alongside Micheal, the photographers Our Labor of Love and Annette & Brian themselves, I am more than ecstatic to share this way-too-rad wedding with you today.
“We really just wanted to make the wedding feel like us – yet still stick to the traditions that are so important to our families” the newlyweds told me. ” We really wanted a vintage and homemade, crafty feel to the wedding. Crafting is a big part of our lives and we have our own crafting blog called Daily-Craft, so it was really important for us to make things. Annette screen printed all the wedding invitations, while Brian lined each envelope with vintage sheet music. Annette is an avid quilter, so she put together a “sign our quilt” area, instead of the traditional guestbook. Because of her librarian roots, we used tons of books for decor and a vintage card catalog for table setting cards. Annette “cataloged” each guest to their assigned seat. Music is really important to Brian (he’s in about 5 bands now?) and Annette (a Music Librarian, to be exact), so we used lots of vintage sheet music in the details of our wedding. Besides using sheet music to line each envelope of our invitations, Brian also created all of our table number signs using a little construction paper and sheet music. Brian also got to play dj during the cocktail hour, putting together a very special mix of music for our guests to enjoy as they sipped on cocktails and ate h’orderves. Going back to the Armenian roots, cooking is very important in Annette’s family, so we decided to make homemade jam for each of our guests as favors. Annette screen printed little tops with our silhouettes, making them a tiny bit more special. Even though we had lots of little details in our wedding, we made sure to let go on our wedding day and just have fun… it was perfect!”
There’s a little bit of a story behind the finding of this fabulous shoot and I thought in sharing it’s gorgeousness I could also explain how it came to land in my inbox.
As many of you know, my husband Gareth is an IT wizz and works from home. As sad as it may be, we love to watch Working Lunch together when I’m not at ‘the day job’. One such afternoon there was a feature on Emma Jones of Enterprise Nation who works with 5-9 ers – ie people who are mad like me, work a full time job and run their own business from home too. So Gareth turns to me and says “You should drop her an email” and so I did. Making this connection has been fabulous for me as not only have I been featured on her site, am being used a case study in her upcoming book (hell to the yeah!) but she sends me regular updates on awesome other 5-9 ers that she thinks I need to know. LeKeux Events was one of these companies. As soon as I landed on their website I knew we’d be a perfect match and after speaking to Lyndsey over email it turned out that she already reads my blog!
Dina & Gary’s 1920’s vaudeville carnival themed wedding makes me wanna squeal. I wish wish wish we’d done something as fabulous as this when we got hitched. The wedding took place at Asbury Park, New Jersey and the pair really went to town with their theme – from popcorn and candy for the guests, a sideshow performance, goldfish in bowls… in fact everything you might expect to find at a carnival! Dina wore a custom dress (made by a friend) and wore jewellery and carried a candy bouquet made by another friend Melissa Heid.