Today’s EPIC wedding has a neon meets nature theme.
And if that doesn’t already make you excited to see it, then how about a blush Bridal gown? An outdoor ceremony with rustic doors and a floral arch as the ‘altar’? A Bride with pink hair? Bridesmaids in black with colour pop accessories? Seriously stunning bouquets?! A Tattoo parlour????!!
Honestly, I could go on and on. This wedding is just full of delicious decor – wonderfully envisioned by creative couple Rosie and Faris, and brought to life by the Pocketful Of Dreams team.
The Dress & Accessories
Rosie The Bride: I thought I wanted something less traditional. What this really meant was that I wanted a dress that wasn’t white. After finding Sarah Seven’s Blushing gown, originally in NYC, I was pretty sure it was the one. Luckily for me, The Dress Theory had just opened a store in Nashville, TN (where my parents and best friend live) and they carried Sarah Seven, so I got “final approval” from my Mom and best lady before purchasing. My belt and veil were recommendations from The Dress Theory owner, Camille.
The belt was by Amanda Judge and the veil by Sara Gabriel. Shoes and earrings I picked out on a trip to the mall with my mom. When I was trying on the Blushing Dress, I also stumbled upon the Golden Lights dress, also by Sarah Seven, which I ended up wearing with cowboy boots to our rehearsal dinner, a hog roast.
My Dad and Faris had a “man date” one of the times we were in Nashville, and after burgers and beer, they visited The Label, where they found Faris’ suit, which was Moods by Norway. I remember when Faris came back to show off the suit, he was especially excited by the inner label, which said “Made with love by really really pretty blond girls.” He was sure he had seen this before, and when searching his Instagram feed saw that he had taken a picture of their label, several years ago at an industry event. If it wasn’t a sign, we took it as one. It didn’t hurt that he looked ridiculously handsome 😉
It was tough to decide to get married in England, since pretty much everything is so much more expensive than the US. (Exceptions: pine nuts and cell phone bills.) But, in the end, it meant that we’d be able to have more family there…And we had the perfect venue: our friend’s farm. Adrian was a Londoner who had just moved to NYC, and he was my boss at a company called Cake. We were always close, but when I left his company, Faris & I became even better friends with him and his wife. (Does that ever happen?!)
We literally cried when they told us they were leaving NYC to head back to London, but in the drunken tears they showed us the farm where they were moving and said we should get married there (though we weren’t even engaged at the time.) We got engaged before they left town, and they hosted an engagement party for us where they officially offered their home as our wedding location.
Faris and I have been dating since early 2009, and over the course of just two years, we went to 22 weddings together. One of the biggest things we learned was that the best weddings were the ones that were most representative of the couples. We’re not ones to follow to color rules (I have pink hair, he has orange everything), so we decided intentionally not to go the route of color schemes.
That being said, we’re also in a creative industry and understand the importance of branding, and having a vision, so we did put together a guide for our partners. Our theme was Neon Meets Nature. Since our wedding was outside and on a farm, we wanted the natural beauty of the venue to shine through, but we wanted pops of color that reflected our colorful language. Erm, personality 😉
As it says in our ‘brand book’, “We’re bold and bright ourselves, but we all know too much color can be overwhelming. Bright neons paired with natural wood tones will add pops of color, giving the wedding a playful and relaxed feel. Occasional glitter will add romance & sparkle. We don’t want guests to think “oh the color scheme is [insert two colors]” but instead to feel like this is a country wedding with a Rosie & Faris twist.”
We worked with Vicki & Michelle, the ladies of Pocketful of Dreams, who were amazing at helping us bring this vision to life. They helped not only source decor elements – from the vintage doors we used as an arbor to the galvanized steel buckets for drinks – but also tied everything together on Friday and Saturday. When we couldn’t find bunting we liked, they made neon-dipped burlap bunting and matching hay bale covers, both of which got tons of compliments. I especially loved our temporary tattoo parlour and our pint glasses, which had our wedding logo printed on them and doubled as drinking glasses and favors for guests.
Again, because the venue was outdoors, and the property itself was so beautiful, we opted to spend less on flowers. We found a local supplier and asked for seasonal blooms. My sisters and best lady carried a mini version of my bouquet while my other bridesmaids carried a single hydrangea surrounded by lavender. I was set on having peonies, feathers and green in my bridal bouquet and I thought that Kerri absolutely nailed the vision, even though we only spent a half hour together in the week leading up to the wedding.
Flowers that hung from mason jars on the rows of chairs doubled as flowers on our table, and we also had lots of greenery (instead of tight bouquets of flowers), both of which saved some money. I was especially in love with the big arrangement on the bar, and may have squealed with excitement and run outside when I saw it being carried into the tent.
The (Non) Wedding Party
We weren’t fussed when it came to the wedding party fashion. Since my bridal party were all traveling from the US to London, I didn’t want to add another expense for them. I also realized early on that you should pick the things you really care about and focus your efforts there, and I knew my bridesmaids would look great no matter what they were wearing! I figured everyone would have a black dress, and asked that they accessorize with a pop of color – some had colorful shoes, earrings, necklaces, belts, etc. and it came together looking great.
One of my sisters actually found a super cute romper and wore that instead of a dress. The guys wore black suits they already had and paired with a neon accessory as well.
Both Faris and I had so much fun planning the ceremony. We both give talks and presentations as part of our work, so we treated this like one big performance. Originally we couldn’t decide whether our first dance should be to Matt Nathanson’s “Faster” or to Dave Matthew’s “You & Me Together,” but when we found out our ceremony musician would learn “You & Me Together,” we had him play that we all entered/as I walked down the aisle.
The ceremony itself was officiated by one of our close friends, Mel, and my favorite part – actually one of my favorite parts of the entire day – was when my sisters performed “I Won’t Give Up.” Originally it’s by Jason Mraz, but they covered the version by Stella & Maisey, who are on the show Nashville (and who are awesome!) We had three readings which ranged from Dolly Parton’s Wildflowers to a kid’s book called I Like You.
I Like You was actually one of the earliest decisions we made when it came to planning. We heard it at a close friend’s wedding and several years before we were engaged asked for permission to use it at ours. (It felt like the right thing to do!) I think everyone laughed and cried during the reading. When we re-read the book a few months before the wedding, we realized that there was a line in the book: ‘ I like you because because because I forget why I like you but I do…so many reasons. On the 4th of July I like you because it’s the 4th of July. On the fifth of July, I like you too.’
As you can imagine, it was especially meaningful since we were getting married on the 5th of July! It was a coincidence we were both giddy about. We have a number of gay friends, and are big supporters of equal rights for all, so we also had a moment of silence in the ceremony acknowledging the inequality for gay couples who aren’t given the same support & rights as straight couples. We wrote our own vows, opting for several lines of togetherness, but also an opening, per se, that was completely unique and not shared prior to the day.
Faris loves the rave/festival scene, and having grown up in Nashville, I’m a big fan of country music. When it came to DJs, we were stuck. Thankfully, some friends had been to a party with Stick It On, and suggested them. They give you a website where your friends can sign up to DJ (not just pick songs, but actually sit behind the mixing board with a real DJ!), so we got a wide variety of music that was representative of both of our tastes. Turns out all of our friends loved playing DJ.
Our menu was themed based on some of the most meaningful places to us. On Friday, for the rehearsal dinner, we had a casual hog roast at the farm, with a bunch of BBQ style sides. The company setup in the early morning and slow roasted the pig the whole day. I’ve never seen so much crackling. We invited everyone, so it was the first chance a lot of our friends got to meet. Hog roasts are a thing in the south and the UK, so it felt like a good mingling of culture.
On Saturday, we had mini-meat (& veggie) pies to show some love to London during the cocktail hour, where we also had Southern Sweet Tea Vodka + Lemonade and Pimms Cups as our signature drinks. Our appetizers were a trio of tacos, inspired by my family’s house in Isla Mujeres, Mexico, which was also where we did the legal paperwork for the marriage. The main menu was Southern Soul Food: fried chicken, southern biscuits (NOT the same as british biscuits!!) with herbed butter and pimento cheese, mac & cheese, mashed potatoes with fixins and some greens, because it felt like we should 😉
Though they were initially scared off by the fact I wanted them to sign a contract (I’m American, what can I say?!), our caterers, The Secret Restaurant, were a dream team. They actually made a few different recipes of southern-styled biscuits and we did a tasting in the weeks leading up to the wedding.
Our cake was the recipe from Momofuku Milk Bar for their Birthday Cake, which was one of our favorite places from when we lived in NYC. The Brits especially are STILL raving about the food from the day.
When we solicited advice from friends, everyone said we needed to invest in a good photographer, and some of the biggest wedding disappointments came from people who didn’t feel like their day was well-captured. I immediately felt nervous, and was worried that we wouldn’t pick the right person. We were going to be in London in May of 2013 – over a year before our wedding – so I reached out to photographer Helen Cawte and make-up artist Elbie van Eeden to see if we could coordinate a day for a trial make-up and for engagement pictures.
Since we don’t live in the UK, Helen and I brainstormed neighborhoods and shot lists over email, and once we met up were so thankful to have found her. We loved spending the afternoon with her and when we saw all the pictures, we knew she was perfect! We did want a few formal pictures, but mostly we wanted her reportage style, capturing the day in motion.
The videographers were one of the easiest decisions. Our friends Bridge & Matt got married in the UK before us and used Frances & Becca from Reel Love Films. We loved their wedding video and reached out to them as soon as we had a date set to see if they were available. Thankfully, they were!
I kept DIY projects to a minimum because Faris and I own a roving innovation consultancy, meaning we were planning the wedding from SE Asia, Europe, Central America and the US. That being said, since we were in the UK for a month before the wedding, I did collect scraps of wood from the streets of London and paint all the signs for our wedding, which gave it a festival feel. And in the week leading up, my sisters and bridesmaids and I made some kraft paper and neon paper chains, which were another suggestion from Pocketful of Dreams and ended up looking great in situ!
In terms of advice – the thing that kept me the most calm throughout the planning process was reminding myself that this was supposed to be a celebration of us and our love. Our friends and family know how to party, so if worst case scenario – everything goes to shit – we’d still have 150+ people we loved, from all over the world (8 countries!!), and loads of wine from our friend’s vineyard Il Corzano. And that would be an epic celebration in and of itself!!
Photography by Helen Cawte Photography
- Dress Sarah Seven
- Belt Amanda Judge
- Veil Sara Gabriel
- Groom Moods Of Norway
- Decor & Styling Pocketful Of Dreams
- Florist Highgate Florist & Growers
- DJ Stick It On
- Catering The Secret Restaurant
- Make Up Elbie Van Eeden
- Videography Reel Love Films
- Glamping Lovabell
- Marquee Hire Meridian Marquees
- Photo Booth Hire The Photo Emporium
- Prop Hire Classic Crockery Hire
- Bowties Two Guys Bowties
- Stationery Allison Weiss