Sometimes i love a little bit of alternative wedding inspiration, and this fun Tim Burton inspired wedding is just perfect!
Whimsical Wonderland Weddings sponsor and wedding planner extraordinaire Bernadette at Dream Occasions sent this over to me, and i snapped it up.
This wedding is full of quirky details, and i love the black and white stripes that feature throughout.
Thanks so much to Mark Bothwell for sharing his images with us today….
Names… Rachel and Paul
Wedding Date…. Saturday 30th July 2011
The Proposal…. Without me having any idea Paul had gone round to chat to my mum and dad and then on a Friday night in November 2010 after a lovely home cooked meal (by Paul) he popped the question. Although it wasn’t so much a question at first as an explanation as to why he went to see my parents! Considering all the amazing places we have been together some people have joked about him asking at home whilst sat on our sofa but I really loved it, It was the right way to ask me.
The Vision for the day… FUN! We’re a very sociable couple and have a lot of friends and family between us, we did consider going abroad and I think that’s what a lot of people were expecting us to do as we’re always buzzing off on holiday/travelling somewhere whenever we can, but we decided that we wanted to share it with those nearest and dearest and wanted everybody to be there and enjoy the day with us.
Tim Burton… Black and White stripes were a big part of my remit as in the majority of Tim Burtons films he slips them in somewhere! Also, although I refused to have a football/Westham themed wedding (Paul is obsessed!) I did add a few bits here and there for him. (Claret and blue colouring on the cake, I’m for Ever blowing bubbles playing outside the Castle with a bubble machine on, his suit had claret and blue aspects to it and we also added the colours into some of the table decs where possible)
The Planning process…. “I loved working with Rachel & Paul as they were really open for some fun ideas for the wedding. Its not every wedding I get the chance to go crazy with different table decorations!” Says Bernadette
Budget…. Although this was a detail orientated wedding with each table depicting a different theme, we didn’t spend a lot. There were so many bargains we utilised.T he flowers were a gift from Pauls Mum and this was immensely appreciated on the day. she put so much effort into creating the perfect design on each table. The invitations were designed by us then printed on recycled card at vistaprint. The day stationery used a template by ThePoshEvent at Etsy.com http://www.etsy.com/shop/ThePoshEvent which was about £2, we then printed onto card at staples. This was a fraction of the cost people normally spend and fitted with the theme on the day. The cake was made by a family friend who only charged a nominal amount for ingredients. We bought a lot of items on eBay and Amazon i.e Alice in Wonderland book used as a guest book, books used as decorations on tables and even toad stalls! The wedding car (Audi A8) was our friends, Adrian and Jo Robertson. Adrian was chauffeur for the day :-). The table decorations used upstairs in the afternoon were taken downstairs and used to decorate the evening reception room. Friends doing music in evening (band were extremely discounted and DJ’s were at no cost).
The Venue… We struggled with the ceremony venue as we just wanted somewhere that would hold just the civil ceremony but be a stunning venue as well. As soon as we saw Hedingham Castle that was it, love at first sight. After deciding on Hedingham Castle for the Ceremony we then needed to look for a reception venue. We wanted somewhere close to home, Burnham on Crouch, and started by checking the local yacht clubs. The Royal Corinthian Yacht Club is such a lovely venue right on the river so we booked it.
The Dress + Accessories….. Bought from Birds Brydals in Chelmsford, Essex. Jade Daniels style 2173 – http://www.jadedaniels.com/CollectionPages/2173.html
This dress I think was quite a suprise to most friends and family, they all had bets on as to what colour I would walk down the aisle in!
It was the shoes that took the longest to find I was determined to have ‘different’ shoes to most brides but I also couldn’t really go higher than a kitten heel because of my back problems. I eventually found a pair from Irregular Choice that were perfect, plus when I went with Bridesmaid Jo to buy them there was a beautiful handbag to match, which Jo kindly bought for me.
For those that know me, seeing stripy socks on my arms that I’ve cut the feet off in order to wear or little black lace gloves that come just to my wrist is never a shock its like a trademark! So I called on the help of a friend. Zoe Porter (now Walker) http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0692337/awards she won an Emmy back in 2001, she quickly knocked up the fingerless gloves you see in the pictures from opera length cream satin gloves and lace to match the dress. Perfect.
For my hair I wanted it as simple as possible, I never where my hair up or put fancy clips or ornaments in it. Bridesmaid Loren Davenport had recently finished her hair dressing qualification at Newmarket College, so she offered to do it for me. We had a few trials until we decided on what looked just right.
Finding the dress…. The dress was the first thing on the list and I had a first booking at a bridal shop just before Christmas. When I first started looking I had no idea what I wanted, having quite an individual style I was determined to try on ones quite different to the norm at first, after the first shop there were 2 I really liked a beautiful dove grey satin dress and a figure hugging golden full lace vintage dress. Both had straps and no sparkles (I was sure I didn’t want sparkles!). I tried on several more dresses at different places, mainly lace with straps but also some strapless colourful ones like purple, emerald green and midnight blue. I was starting to think that the ‘feeling’ that other brides had told me about wasn’t going to happen with me but at Birds Bridals it did, and it had sparkles on it! The dress was a present from my parents :-)
Groom’s attire… Paul has always wanted a bespoke suit made to fit and what better time to do it than on your wedding day. Chris Kerr – http://www.chriskerr.com/home.html Dog tooth check 3 piece suit …. Burgundy velvet collar and lining. Light blue and white striped tie. Burgundy Brogues.
The Readings + Music…. Processional – Louis Armstrong, What a Wonderful World, Signing of the Register – Led Zeppelin, Thank you, Recessional – Big Boppa, Chantilly Lace. Once outside the Castle I organised with Bernadette to set a bubble machine off and play ‘I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles’ for Paul, being a huge Westham fan. First Dance – Leroy Hutson, All Because of You. For the reading in the Castle – Marvin Gaye – It Takes Two – read by, Richard, a close friend.
One can have a dream,
Two can make that dream so real
One can talk about being in love
Two can say how it really feels
One can wish upon a star
Two can make that wish come true,
One can stand alone in the dark
Two can make the light shine through
One can have a broken heart, living in misery
Two can really ease the pain like a perfect remedy
One can be alone in a car, on a night like these all alone
Two can make just any place seem just like being at home
One can go out to a movie, looking for a special treat
Two can make that single movie something really kind of sweet
One can take a walk in the moonlight, thinking that it’s really nice
But two walking hand-in-hand is like adding just a pinch of spice
Beautiful bridesmaids….. I am not keen on the traditional bridesmaids dresses so I asked my closest friends to be bridesmaids but wear whatever outfits they wanted. They each had a bouquet (buttonhole for Hayley) and I gave them a black & white striped bracelet. Vicki Goodfellow – blue dress, Hayley Lloyd – back suit & yellow shirt, Wilhelmina Tunbridge-Steeds – green dress, Jo Robertson – purple dress, Loren Davenport – pink dress.
The Flowers… Pauls Mum, Ann Bush used to own a florist shop so she was the ideal choice to do our flowers for us. A wonderful wedding present! Although she was unaware of the Tim Burton films she was incredibly enthusiastic and really threw herself into the theme. I was adamant each table was to be different and wanted it to be a stunning scene when you looked at the tables. Ann did an amazing job on them, we had 8 tables all displaying a different Tim Burton film and they all had black and white striped runners, white table cloths, black chair covers and napkins: A Corpse Bride (head Table) (this arrangement was used at the castle as well), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Alice in Wonderland, Edward Scissor Hands, James and the Giant Peach
Batman, A Nightmare Before Christmas, Mars Attacks.
The Cake… A friend of the family did our cake, Josie Mitchell. We went for 4 tiers the base was fruit and marzipan, next was chocolate sponge and the top 2 were plain Madeira cake. The layers were alternate, black and white stripes (Tim Burton) and claret and blue (westham) with swirls (Tim Burton). On the top rather than the usual Corpse Bride figurines that are the norm on TB wedding cakes I wanted Jack Skellington and Sally from a Nightmare Before Christmas (“…it is plain, as anyone can see. We’re simply meant to be.”). There were butterflies and flowers all over as well.
Your Photographer…. Mark Bothwell. It was Bernadette that suggested Mark, and as soon as we met we really like him he was very much on our wavelength. We didn’t want too many formal shots, there would be a small list to do quickly but the rest of the time we wanted him to catch action and special moment pictures. The end result we were over the moon with
The Details + Decor…. The Castle… very traditional service but personalised via our readings and music choices. Ice Cream man…at the castle for the drink reception. Black and white stripes… within the outfits/stationery/table runners. Tim Burton… different film for each table, Lou let me know if you need descriptions on each one. The Coach – a coach collected guests from Burnham on Crouch took them to the castle and then onto the yacht club. We organised OJ and muffins for the outward journey and mini champagne for the return.
The Honeymoon…. Barbados! First class flights with Virgin, Villa on the west coast and the annual carnival ‘Crop Over.’
My wedding present to Paul, was a tailored to fit westham (Katy Perry style) corset outfit (for me to wear obviously!) Zoe who made the wedding gloves also did this for me. She did an amazing job and we had so much fun doing it, I had to keep making up excuses as to why I was spending so much time round there.
Memorable moments… All of it!
Advice for other couples… Get a wedding planner! Money well spent as Bernadette was fantastic through the whole planning process but especially on the day it all went like clockwork. Remember it’s your wedding so do what you WANT to do, listen to peoples advice but at the end of the day it’s you that the day is for. If you go straight to the airport from your reception (which was great) MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR ESSENTIALS!
Credit where credit’s due…
Hedingham Castle – http://www.hedinghamcastle.co.uk/
Royal Corinthian Yacht Club – http://royalcorinthian.co.uk/
Dream Occasions (planner) – http://dream-occasions.co.uk/
Mark Bothwell (photographer) – http://www.bothwellphoto.com/
B&W Stationery design – http://www.etsy.com/shop/ThePoshEvent
We got it covered – http://www.wegotitcovered.co.uk/
Evening Band . T-Bone Steak.
DJ’s (friends) – Dave Lodge, Chris Hill and Kevin Hill who were on after T-Bone Steak.
Thanks so much to Rachel and Paul for sharing their super fun wedding with us today, have a lovely Saturday peeps xoxo Lou