Any bride that rocks yellow tights and teal shoes on her wedding day is instantly awesome. Are we in agreement?
When Annick & Robert’s London wedding landed in my inbox from wedding photographer Marshal Gray, I literally couldn’t wait to share it with you! The whole wedding was planned in just 6 weeks. The ceremony took place at Sutton House, and after an emotional service the couple walked to London Fields for a hotdog lunch and some portraits. “On the way we met a friend who was coming to the evening event,” Annick told me. “It was a wonderful walk to really reflect on the day and our personal journey. We use to live near London Fields so the walk had real emotional significance to us.”
After the photos, including a few outside the St Pancras Hotel where the couple were spending that night, they headed to Smithy’s Wine Bar in Kings Cross where they met back up with their guests. “Smithy’s was a cozy place for our winter evening wedding,” the bride continued. “It has two spaces within it which was perfect for what we needed – one for talking and one for music. It was great to have a live jazz band to entertain our guests.”
“We didn’t really have a theme apart from slightly retro and wanted to have fun,” the bride concluded. “We wanted people to be relaxed and for our day to be easy for all which is why we did it in London. We were also able to show our out of town guests places in London that we enjoy.”
So fab! As a side note I have to say that Annick’s vintage feather jacket from Charlotte Casadejus is just divine! I actually know Charlotte very well myself and I’ve visited her fab studio a number of times. I always lusted after that jacket (and put it on and pranced around!) and so it’s really exciting to me to see the bride who finally bought it!
For Becca & Dan, a formal wedding was never on the cards. “We wanted the day to be about our guests not all the attention on us,” the bride wrote. “There were no formalities, just tea & cakes followed by pie & mash then a good all knees up in an east London pub with Billie Holiday playing & a free bar all night!”
Becca got ready at Zetter Townhouse, a really stylish house with quirky vintage decor & stuffed animals. It proved to be the perfect place for some pre-ceremony snaps with her bridesmaid and really set the tone for the rest of the wedding day.
The bride wore an unusual and beautiful Delphine Manivet wedding dress with nude Kurt Geiger shoes and a vintage headpiece. For the couple’s portraits in a local park (with their dog – I love this!) Becca added a fur trimmed coat.
After a ceremony in Hackney town hall, the lucky wedding guests were treated to a good old fashioned party with a nod to the 1940s at The Crown Pub in Victoria Park, East London.
The couple booked Joanna Brown to capture the fun. “Jo was truly brilliant,” Becca continued. “She understood what we wanted and put us at ease straight away. We knew we’d picked the best girl for the job and she captured our day just perfectly. We really feel that if you weren’t there on the day, our photos really tell the story of our wedding.”
Stevie & Nick’s eclectic city wedding took place in Mile End, East London. The bride described the day to me as “eclectic retro community chic,” with so many of their friends and family pitching in to help. “So many people said ‘that’s how weddings used to be’ and ‘this is how it should be, family and friends mucking in’. It meant a lot to us that this was how we did it – it wouldn’t have happened without all of the support we received.”
The wedding day started with the ceremony at Bromley Public Hall and concluded with a rockin’ party reception at The Victoria Pub, “Old man pub heaven” as the bride described it! “They’d never hosted a wedding before, but we were there for a jumble sale and afternoon pint and fell in love with the place,” she explained. “We started chatting to Jo and Martin, the amazing couple who own the pub with their son Alfie and couldn’t believe how genuinely excited they were by it. It made me realise that experience of weddings only gets you so far – real passion and enthusiasm was a lot more important in the end. When we wanted to bring in our own flowers, cakes and decorations – including nailing things to the wall – they were all for it!”
Stevie wore a short wedding dress which she bought on lightinthebox.com. “I know this website received mixed reviews, but it was the only place which had the style I wanted for the budget I had,” she explained honestly. “It worked for me and I would recommend it to anyone how has an eye for a bargain. Visiting weddings shops didn’t even enter the equation! I found this far less stressful. I didn’t try on any dresses or partake in the crazy wedding industry world for a second – people thought I was really weird for wanting to avoid the meringue monstrosity outlets.”
The couple brought their own cake, flowers and decor items and dressed their reception themselves (well with help from a friend on the morning of the wedding). This way, they were able to have the pub exactly as they wanted for a fraction of the price. “Our cake was made by my food-obsessed bridesmaid and usher. They were mini Victoria sponges filled with lemon curd (Nick’s favourite) with a big cake topped with little handmade versions of us. They came on vintage cake stands and looked amazing. Who needs 14 tier fruit cakes? No one eats it and it costs a fortune. These were made with real love and every one got eaten. Our 1950’s waitresses handed them round to the guests at their seats like a little (drunken) tea party!”
“We also bought all the flowers wholesale from Covent Garden Flower Market the day before the wedding (at 5am. Ouch.) Two of my incredible bridesmaids then spent the entire day putting them together. Everything was a surprise for me – including my bouquet. For a control freak like me, it was amazing. I only found out later that 3 bouquets had got stuck to the back of the fridge they were stored in, meaning lots of emergency flower re-arranging on the morning! I didn’t even notice!”
“The rest of the reception decor and props came from Deptford Market, every charity shop in Essex and Kent, eBay and our house. We were engaged for 18 months and we spent the whole time collecting little bits here and there. The whole family was involved. My sister put together the most amazing candy buffet using cut glass cake stands, jars and vases from my home. My childhood friend made 20 metres of blue and white bunting to go across the garden and Nick used our collection of second hand photo frames to put together a little photography exhibition of photos since we met. The gingham tablecloths were made by my Mum and we all sat around making our birds nest favours the day before the wedding.”
“No one in my family does big weddings,”Stevie concluded. “They either elope, or live quite happily without getting hitched. I had no family pressure so we were really able to do what felt right. Both of us were brought up going to jumble sales, hunting for bargains and being suspicious of anything which demanded a whole heap of money. I guess what made it different was that the idea of ‘impossible’ didn’t exist. We had a London wedding with 70 all day guests, 30 more in the evening, 7 bridesmaids and 7 ushers, beautiful food, drink and decoration all for around £7000. If we wanted something, we made it happen. It was really hard sometimes but we knew it was what we wanted.”
“Being Rock n Roll for me was about ignoring the ‘advice’ we read in magazines and pig headedly carrying on! No one believed me that a Victorian pub could be transformed into a sit down dining reception venue, but I knew it could. You can have the wedding you want on the budget you have, it just takes a lot of love and support from everyone around you and anything is possible.”
This is all just so utterly gorgeous! And did you spy Stevie’s nails? LOVE!
What’s this? Another awesome wedding from my photographer buddy Assassynation? Yep that’s right people, Sassy (aka Assassynation) really does get some of the very best wedding around…and the most awesome thing is many of them are Rock n Roll Bride readers so I get to then share them with you all afterwards. Yeey.
Lou & Chris had a simple wedding in London…and by simple I mean no fuss, no drama – just an awesome and super stylist day! They were married at Stoke Newington Town Hall, London which they followed up with a reception at The Londesborough pub, also in Stoke Newington.
“Our dream wedding was just a handful of family and close friends and a quiet registry office service,” the bride told me. “In all honesty, I was terrified of walking down the aisle and hated the idea of speeches. But we both have big families so, when we wrote down our list of essential guests, we realised that a small wedding was simply not an option. Instead, we decided to make it as personal as possible. We both work in magazines but were intimidated by the ideas in a lot of wedding magazines – we simply didn’t have the budget or the inclination to have a big swanky bash. Thankfully, I found Rock n Roll Bride just in the nick of time and realised that it was fine to do things differently – big relief!”
“We’re not religious so didn’t want to marry in a church and we didn’t fancy a hotel either,” Lou continued. “We looked at loads of venues in London and Yorkshire, where I’m from, from barns to restaurants to even an art gallery. Then we found the perfect place five minutes from where we lived. Stoke Newington Town Hall had recently been renovated and, every time we walked past and saw the grand pillars and art deco details, we’d both smile. When we had a wander around inside, we were equally blown away by it. We struck gold when we found the reception venue, The Londesborough – a gastro pub just down the road. Neither of us were interested in formalities or stuffiness and didn’t buy into the whole ‘princess for a day’ thing – we just wanted the whole day to be full of meaning for us and for it to be fun for our guests. Thankfully, the pub’s owners, Patrick and Greg Wright, were on our wavelength and happily allowed us to adorn the pub with homemade bunting and flower arrangements.”
“We tried to use local suppliers. Chris designed our invites and we used a local printer. The florist was also just down the road from our flat. We also had the idea of using old books as place settings as they’d double as favours and give people something to talk about at the meal. I had a romantic notion about DIY-ing and envisaged myself wafting around serenely, creating all these wonderful little bits. It was actually bloody hard work and I spent many weekends hunched over my sewing machine making metres of bunting and matching cushions. Thankfully, my sister helped out with sewing but I had to buy some extra in – the Mr and Mrs Smith bunting and the outdoor stuff was all bought in a panic the week before the wedding, as well as some extra cushions from Primark.”
“We made all the table names and also the place settings which we made by by writing names on parcel tags, putting them on raffia and then wrapping the raffia around the books. We got books from second hand book shops as well as purging my dad and gran’s book collections and we got a load of racy romance novels from the library – they were being sold off for 20p a book. We spent £20 max on the place settings and nearly all of them were taken home so they were definitely a success! We also saved money by using jam jars instead of buying vases for the reception flowers and dressed them up by wrapping raffia around them. Simple but really pretty.”
Lou went to my favourite dress shop for her vintage wedding dress, Fur Coat No Knickers in London. She explained, “When it came to my outfit, I always knew that I didn’t want a long dress. When I walked into FCNK, I completely fell in love – both with the dresses and with Laura and Emma, who run the shop. They are both so talented. At first, I’d thought that I’d go with a prom style dress but then I tried on a long fifties number and they showed me how they could transform it into a wiggle dress complete with a sash and funky ‘Priscilla Presley- style short veil. At every fitting I felt so comfortable in it and, on the wedding day, I even felt confident enough to make a speech.” Lou teamed her dress with shoes from Rachel Simpson and jewellery which was a gift from her Gran.
The photography was also really important to the couple, and I’m so excited that they picked one of my favourite ladies to shoot the day for them. “With the photography, it was important to us that the pictures captured the essence of the day and Sassy of Assassynation did not disappoint. She is such a calm person and she caught some really special moments, as well as all the fun bits, the decoration details and creating some really stylish shots too. We also had a little film produced by Frank Millar, which he set to our wedding music, and which makes us laugh and cry in equal measures. Everyone said how hard working and easy to get along with both Sassy and Frank were. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them.”
“Lots of people said that it was a very relaxed, fun wedding and I think that’s because we stayed true to ourselves and tried not to care what anyone thought,” concluded Lou. “On the day, the things that I’d worried about were my favourite part – walking down the aisle towards Chris was amazing and the ceremony was truly the happiest time of my life. Close friends did readings and my sister’s boyfriend Ian performed ‘It Must be Love’ by Labi Siffre. It was just perfect and really uplifting and I’m so glad that we followed our hearts. Our families and friends were amazing with helping us out. My mum organised the reception flowers – she brought down loads of flowers from her garden and did the arrangements the afternoon before the wedding, with help from Chris’ mum. And our families also helped us decorate the pub on Friday afternoon. Chris and his brother were out in pouring rain, putting up fairy lights in the garden, while the mums did the flowers and me, my dad, sister, auntie, my new sister in law Laura and one of our best mates clambered over chairs to pin up the bunting.”
“To me, that summed up the whole wedding – it was about two families joining together and it was really, really special. Not everything went according to plan – our shoes got trashed and we have a sneaking suspicion that no one remembered to turn on the fairy lights in the garden but we were having too much fun dancing to care! Our wedding day was messy and imperfect but it was real and so much fun and we wouldn’t have had it any other way.”
Yey!! This wedding makes me so happy. Don’t forget to check out the video too…wow.
I am totally thrilled, excited, over the moon, honoured that my editor at WEDDING Magazine asked if I wanted to feature her Rock n Roll wedding. As the editor of a national wedding magazine, you might expect her wedding to be the super traditional kind but not this chick! By working in the industry for so long, Catherine knew exactly what she did (and didn’t!) want for her big day and the result was a fabulous and eclectic one.
She spoke to me this week about her Rock n Roll wedding ideas, “I was never going to be a traditional tiara and train bride. I needed something that screamed ‘look at me’ for all the right reasons and Candy Anthony realised this dream for me. My scarlet prom dress with matching headpiece was the exact statement I wanted to make, and drew crowds outside Chelsea register office when we stood at the top of those infamous steps. I didn’t want my wedding to be too colour co-ordinated, and chose an OTT venue complete with Jimi Hendrix posters, stuffed crocodiles and a view of Battersea Power Station to add to the mix. I clashed funky Ikea prints with recycled tins and bottles, chose non-bridal vibrant dahlias and had my tattooist brother design my wedding cake. I also wanted to ditch formality, so there was no table plan, guests just grabbed a seat in either the decked garden or in the bar to enjoy their surf n turf barbecue while being entertained by deceptionist Sav and pianist Danny Mills doing his own versions of Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and AC/DC songs. Rock music was vitally important to me on my big day, no cheesy Take That love songs here! And as my ace DJs Wedding Smashers played Guns n Roses (my favourite group) and I danced with my friends and family, I knew I’d created my ideal Rock n Roll wedding.”
Catherine married Sergio in the suitably Rock n Roll environment of The Duchess Pub, Battersea. “I wanted my big day to be relaxed and without any of the formality of a traditional English wedding,” explained the bride, who looked radiant in her bright red Candy Anthony gown. “I wanted the day to have an urban party feel, so I chosen my pub venue for it’s laidback, eclectic vibe and décor as well as the stunning view of Battersea Power Station.”
The styling of the reception was also anything but traditional. Catherine had florist Rebel Rebel fill the room with flowers, “I had my heart set on Rebel Rebel’s signature flower-filled retro handbags, and also loved its original cake stands packed with roses. The eclectic mix of bottles, tins and jars used to display the vibrant table displays of dahlias, roses and stocks completed the colourful look to absolute perfection.”
The bride’s Mum and Dad hand decorated the photo frames which the couple gave out as favours and Fancy Nancy created a completely show stopping cake for the occasion. The rest of the reception décor – the bunting, the cushions etc were also all DIY’ed by Catherine and her Mum.
What a seriously fabulous wedding – I wouldn’t expect anything less than the editor of the wedding magazine that lets me and MY bonkers ideas on to it’s pages every issue!
Catherine & Sergio’s wedding can be seen in this month’s WEDDING Magazine (alongside my latest ‘trends’ article) out in shops NOW!
I adore featuring weddings like Alexa & Andy’s the most. British, quirky, emotional and fun! The couple got married at Birmingham Registry Office on Easter Sunday and had the awesome Steve Gerrard on hand to take all their photographs. The room was really modern and had a gorgeous courtyard outside which made for some beautiful portraits.
The reception was held at The Bell, at Tamworth in Arden which they selected for it’s informal and carefree nature. They knew their friends and family would have fun in the pub’s relaxed atmosphere. The cake was made by Alexa’s Mum after they saw something similar in a magazine and decided to have a go at making it themselves (that’s exactly what we did!)
Alexa wore a dress, gorgeous little hat and corset were all custom designed and made by Jo at The Couture Company, at The Custard Factory in Birmingham. “I knew straight away that I wouldn’t have a traditional wedding dress and I really like the 50s style full circle dress so did a bit of internet research and found Jo” she told me. She teamed this with shoes from Dune for the day time and pink, shiny Doc Martens for the evening! Love….!