As soon as I saw the sneak peek of Ele & Raph’s wedding on their wedding photographer’s facebook page, I knew I wanted to feature them… it’s not really that difficult to see why is it? Could these guys be any more Rock n Roll if they tried?! The couple booked Rock n Roll Bride favourite Assassynation to capture their amazing day.
“What a great pleasure it was to have Sassy do the photography on our special day! I felt at ease as soon as I met her”, began the bride. “Upon speaking to my (camera shy!) husband afterwards, he said exactly the same about Sassy, that she jumped at every opportunity to get that perfect shot and with simple instructions made him feel comfortable and contented. Ecstatic with the sneak peeks that Sassy had uploaded within less than 24 hours (wow!) onto her Facebook page, we both knew that Sassy is one Rock n Roll photographer and it would not have been the same without her!”
The July wedding took place at The Spa Hotel, Tunbridge Wells. “The staff were outstanding in providing amazing service and ensuring that every small detail was exactly to our expectations,” she continued. “The food was to a superb standard and the manager went out of his way throughout the day to make our celebration as awesome as possible.”
The couple handmade as much as possible including the table plan, the card boxes, the various skulls dotted around the place and their stationery. “One phrase that sums up the run up to our wedding… ‘if you want something done properly, do it yourself!'” Ele laughed. “I spray painted each individual favour box in a baby pink for the guests and finished it off with a black skull stencil on each of them. I knew that this was going to be a lot of work, however there was no way I was not going to add these important touches to this very important day. It could be said that a lot of people find it easy to choose something from a book and then have somebody else make it for them, but where is the fun in that? Adding our own characters to the various aspects of our celebration made it what it was to us – the most beautiful and breathtaking day we have ever experienced. I feel very proud that it’s now being featured here for everyone to see!”
For their day-after photo shoot Leia & Brad wanted to get someone else involved – Betsy Beetle! “I love this vintage VW beetle that drives by my house everyday with a cute little luggage rack,” wedding photographer Katherine O’Brien explained, “so I asked Terry, her owner, if we could borrow her for the afternoon.”
“It’s still a little chilly in Austin where we live so Leia wore her own vintage faux leopard wrap and turquoise pumps, ” she continued. “Leia had wanted a vintage 50s style wedding dress, but couldn’t find the right one that wasn’t stained yellow from age at the thrift stores. So her awesome Mom offered to make her one! After finally picking a lace and fabric, her Mom used one of her old sundresses as a pattern. She spent months sewing, ripping, and resewing. What an incredible gift to have your Mother make your wedding dress!”
I love weddings like Claire & Lee’s. Not just because the rockabilly theme is awesome, but because they put their heart and soul(s) into creating a wedding that reflects how they are in everyday life.
“We’re both very much in to the whole rockabilly and psychobilly scenes and have been for quite some time, so it only seemed natural to extend this to our wedding day,” Claire told me. “One thing we set out to do from the very beginning was to make our wedding day for us. It seems all too often that people try and tailor their wedding day around their family and other guests, where as for ourselves we tailored it around us and guests had to fit in; which they did wonderfully.”
“We sourced everything ourselves to fit our style perfectly; the clothes, cars, venues, music and decorations had to be just right; and although at times it was a nightmare of a challenge to get every thing perfect (antique teapots are notoriously hard to find) we managed it and wouldn’t have changed anything for the world.”
The wedding ceremony was held at Manor by the Lake, Cheltenham. After a moving service the couple were greeted by Morris Dancers as they departed. “As Lee is a Morris dancer he had his side (The Gloucester Morris Men) waiting outside of the venue ready for when we walked out as husband and wife, their sticks raised in an arch for us to walk through. They then preformed a few dances for us, including Ladies Pleasure, a one man jig, for Claire. Lee also joined the side for one dance.” The couple were then whisked off to their DIY styled reception at The Lower Lode Inn, Tewkesbury in a 1959 Black Cadillac.
“All of the decorations for the reception I made myself, including 80 meters of bunting and the green and purple polka dot table cloth centres,” Claire continued. “The bunting ran diagonally across the room and was coupled up with strings of fairy lights, which came together to form a heart on the wall directly behind Lee and I. The table decorations were antique tea sets, with flower arrangements in the teapots and the tea cup and saucers had floating tea lights in them. There were also cut glass candle stick holders and candles which we collected ourselves.
Both the bride and groom wore two outfits, one for the ceremony and one for the reception. Claire changed from her Fairy Goth Mother corset and a skirt (made by a local seamstress to which Claire added – by hand – 500 pearls!) to her Forever Unique reception dress. Lee switched from a black 1950’s sharkskin suit (made in Las Vegas and bought on eBay) to a silver sharkskin suit which he found at Moss Bros of all places!