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I thee Wed – Charlotte and Dave

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I thee Wed – Charlotte and Dave

After a short break from I thee Wed, we’re back with a vengeance and we’re starting off with a real corker. The lovely Charlotte Thomson (who, by the way, is the most amazing artist and produces beautiful bridal portraits, check out her website here) kicks things off with her 1940’s inspired gem of a day. Over to you Charlotte:

Firstly, where and when did you get married?

We got married on Sept 18th 2010, 1 year after Dave proposed and 6 years (to the day) after we originally got together. So we only have one date to remember!  We got married at West Bridgford Registry Office in Nottingham, we wanted to keep things simple with just close family and friends. I used to play on the park that surrounds the registry office as a child and used to pick up the confetti from outside, I remember the excitement when there was a bride or a fancy car there to see, so there was an element of nostalgia in us choosing to get married there.

What made you decide on your venue?

We had our reception in Radcliffe Hall, Radcliffe on Trent, Notts – a little gem that we discovered with help from some friends. It ticked all our boxes – it’s a beautiful old character building, was great value and allowed us to organise our own catering and entertainment and do things OUR way. Having done events organizing for a living I was loathed to be tied into an expensive package deal, plus everywhere else we went we were told how to run our wedding, ‘how it’s done’, I got sick of being made out to be difficult just because we wanted to break with tradition and had our minds firmly set on what we wanted. When I’d lost all hope of having the wedding reception we’d been discussing for years, up popped Radcliffe Hall, with all the freedom in the world.

What was it like choosing your dress and had you always had your heart set on that style?

I’ve never been one of these women who has planned their wedding since they were a little girl so I didn’t have a ‘dream dress’ or anything like that! I knew I didn’t want something traditional, I knew I wanted something that was flattering and unique and tied in with the 1940s and 50s fashions that I love. When we announced our engagement my friend Susi Henson who runs Eternal Spirits instantly offered to make my dress, which was great as I had intended to ask her anyway! We worked together on the design, I was initially torn between two ideas but in the end we went for a 1940s fitted style in a pale green/blue silk dupion with beaded Nottingham lace appliqués and covered button details.

My friend Ellie made the my beautiful bag with offcuts of fabric and lace from the dress, she embroidered the date and our names into the lining. She’s now going into business as a bag designer.

One dress wasn’t enough for me though! I spotted a gorgeous 50’s reproduction circle dress in cream with bold yellow roses while google searching something for a client. After hunting down the manufacturer I discovered it was by a US company called Pin Up Couture – unfortunately only one of their stockists had it left in my size and they were in the Netherlands! Cue me trying to order online with the help of babelfish online translator and ending up on the phone to Rotterdam when I managed to mess up the order!  Anyway I managed to get what I think was the last one of those dresses in my size in the whole world!

Talk us through the theme and decor of the wedding

Our theme was I suppose ‘vintage’. Our car was a gorgeous Daimler from the 1930s, my first dress was 1940s style and second dress was 1950s style and we had a tea party reception in a Victorian venue with Victorian lace table cloths and masses of cakes, teapots, tea cups and saucers from all eras. We had a local New Orleans style brass band entertain us all afternoon – So it was a mish mash of nostalgic styles which in the end seemed to tie together nicely!

We wanted our day to be informal and fun for everyone, we did away with table plans and speeches (apart from a short one from my dad) and everyone mingled and chatted, danced and caught up with long lost friends who had come from as far afield as Penzance, and in one case, were home from serving in Afghanistan. It was really special to have all those people in one room sharing our day with us.

Anything quirky and creative we should know about your wedding?

We did a lot ourselves, being an artist and a graphic designer we designed our own invitations,decorated the venue ourselves, decorated our own cake and our guests made most of  the smaller cakes. We also did away with traditional flower arrangements and painted terracotta pots, planted them with violas and other garden flowers, at the end of the day everyone took home a plant to keep.  We were lucky enough to have Lisa of Candee Photography take our main wedding photos, however since we happen to have friends who are professional photographers, who were there as guests (Natalie Jayne Imaging and Emma of Miss Rain Photography) they kindly took some additional shots of the wedding, you order one photographer quite literally and 3 come along at once!

Our honeymoon was in Mexico and we asked for Mexican Pesos instead of the traditional toaster. Some of our friends got really creative and put the money inside a Pinata, when we managed to burst it we were showered with Mexican notes!

A huge thank you to Charlotte for sharing her special day with us and that dress was most definitely worth the hassle my lovely 🙂


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