Sunday 26 June 2011

Real Summer Vintage Wedding: Renira & Sam

When a wedding photographer gets married, the wedding is always something special - after all, they've had enough wedding inspiration to sink a ship! Renira & Jane Photography are amongst our favourite wedding photographers here on Before the Big Day Wedding Blog, so it's our huge pleasure to feature Renira's gorgeous summer wedding, photographed by Jane. I'm loving Renira's exquisite vintage dress and elegant jewellery, plus the light-hearted feel of their picnic reception, complete with ladybirds. I seriously love ladybirds! Don't miss the countryside-style bouquets and laser-cut cupcake covers - you'll be wanting to add those to your wedding inspiration folder right now - it's summer perfection.

The Before the Big Day Bridal Q&A - Renira was kind enough to fill in our bridal questionnaire, aimed at helping other brides with their planning process. Feast your eyes on her answers for helpful hints and tips from someone on the other side of her big day!

Where and when did you get married?
The Oxford Town Hall

What was your thinking behind choosing the venue and the decoration of the reception?
We wanted it to be simple and about the marriage not just about the day (and we also only had 2 months to plan!). The 'reception' was a picnic with food made by my sister-in-law Lauren and her Spanish cook boyfriend, Rupi, in the field behind my Mum's house where I have lived for 25 years. Because it was out-doors the decoration was simple and bright, with cushions and blankets, and a very relaxed feel. In the evening we went to our favourite restaurant with 20 of our closest family.

Did you have a theme, colour or motif in mind?
The overall theme was relaxed, outdoors and very personal. My brothers gave me away, our Mums were the witnesses and my Mum did a speech. We only had 30 people at the ceremony and 40-50 at the reception to keep it very intimate.

At the beginning, we didn't really have a theme in mind other than a nod to vintage, but then one of red and green seemed to appear, and so did ladybirds on glass jam jars and on napkins!! We had bunting and country garden flowers chosen by my mum. The jam jars were for guests to take home and put tea lights in, and on the day they were to hold their knives and forks in.

Who made your wedding outfit, and how did you come to that decision?
My accessories were a mix: pearls from my mum, shoes from Dune, and the dress was a result of two months of searching on the internet. It's an authentic 1920's vintage wedding dress from an American site (but I can't remember which site!) I knew I didn't want a long dress and I wanted something different and completely unique.

What about your husband’s outfit? Where was it from?
My husband said that he would spend as much on a suit, as I spent on a dress. His thinking was that I would spend a few hundred. But I surprised myself, and him, by getting the dress for only £120! I was very proud. So Sam's suit ended up being a Paul Smith suit with a very funky lining.

And how about your bridesmaids’ outfits?
They each chose their own dresses. I didn't want everything to be perfect and matching. I wanted them to feel comfortable and themselves. The day was very much about the emotion not just the look (each bridesmaid cried more than I did I think!)

What type of cake did you go for, and how did you come to that decision?
My Mum and my Godmother Anna (who came over from South Africa), made cupcakes the day before!

Did you have any favours? What were they?
The favours were jam jars with handmade fimo ladybirds stuck on the outside. I also handstitched ladybird buttons onto my guests' napkins for them to take home.

Who was your florist, what flowers did you choose, and how did you come to that decision?
Daisy's Flower Shop in Oxford made the bouquet. My mum has a fantastically beautiful garden and other than her four children it is her love! So other than saying I didn't want it to be neat and sleek, my mum chose all the flowers. I didn't see them until the day!

Who was your photographer and how did you choose them?
Renira and Jane Photography. Jane's my best friend, business partner and it wouldn't have made sense not to!

Did you enjoy planning your wedding?
Yes, it was quick but stress free! The inclusion of our immediate and closest family was very important to us and made the day!

Did you have any DIY projects?
Yes. All the table decorations, food, invites (which took a month!) and bunting

Who designed your stationery? What did it look like and how did you come to that decision?
My Grandpa gave me a letter stamp set which was over 100 years old, and I made each of the 40/50 invites by hand with these stamps. Every letter was hand stamped and it took quite a while!

What advice do you have for brides planning their big day?
You only get to do it once and so do it for yourself and your partner not for anyone else. The day passes so quickly and there is so much that can be missed or forgotten, so invest in a great photographer to capture all the bits you don't see or can't remember.

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  1. Very cute wedding - love the jam jars with cutlery

  2. What a gorgeous dress! Loving the ladybird details and the cakes look super yummy!

  3. Great looking wedding with some fabulous images. Love the simple bouquet :)


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