Thursday, 29 September 2011

Wedding day!

Well, we did it! Sunday 18th September at 4.00pm in Red Hook, Brooklyn, New York. We had a great day, a fantastic week in New York afterwards and are very happy to be married. I'd starting writing approximately a million words about the day but have decided to let the pictures do the talking instead.

We decided to get married on a pier we found in Red Hook. It seemed really peaceful and it appealed to both of us to get married surrounded by water. Relaxing and pretty. And it had a great view of the Statue of Liberty! This is us watching the sunset from the pier the evening before the big day.

Wedding day

We'd rented an apartment in Red Hook through airbnb. I can't recommend it enough, I'll do a separate post on it. A huge converted loft space, it was perfect. This is us having pre-wedding mimosas, I'm just about to send Tom on his way to wait for me and meet the guests so I can get ready with my friend Jenny.

Wedding day

This is me practising my poses!

Wedding day

Meanwhile Tom is waiting anxiously at the pier.

Wedding day

After a sunny walk through Red Hook with Jenny, here I am! We'd made bunting out of some old typed library cards we found in the street, to try and seal off the end of the pier - it worked!

Wedding day

Aw, poor Tom must have been sweating at this point.

Wedding day

Excited!

Wedding day

During the ceremony. My friend Jenny was able to marry us, as she is licensed to perform weddings in New York. It was awesome to have a friend do the ceremony, she read a Dorothy Parker poem from a book I'd given her before she moved to New York.*

Wedding day

Wedding day

We'd also asked a musician, Andrew Lamb, if he would play for us. He played as I walked up the pier and as soon as we'd finished our vows. I'd seen him play the year previously at a jazz festival in NYC and he bent over backwards to come and play. It really made the day.

Wedding day

Wedding day

Job done! It went really quickly, was slightly dream-like and I couldn't remember the long sentences I needed to repeat. We frolicked around on the pier for a while. We made bellinis from ingredients we'd hidden in ice over the edge of the pier and threw the confetti both of our mothers had given us.

Wedding day

Cutting the cake I'd brought over from Betty's!

Wedding day

Wedding day

My friend, the wonderful Gypsy Rose Flowers made me this silk bouquet to take. It had a vintage lucky black cat brooch on the stem. She made Tom's buttonhole as well. Thank goodness she thought of it and insisted, I wasn't going to bother with flowers, can you imagine? 

Wedding day

The back of the dress, which I loved. It was from Sandro, it was the third dress I bought. Seeing the photos, I thought I looked like a 30-something Catholic schoolchild going for my first holy communion. Despite my mother lending me all of her best jewels for my 'something borrowed' I wore a gold locket I found for £1.50 in a charity shop in Whitstable. So I guess that was my something old. And I did wear my mum's pearl drop earrings and put a lucky sixpence in my shoe. And I had a something blue, but I can't tell you what that was.

Wedding day

Posing for pictures. The two guests are my friend Mike, who lives in NYC, and his wife Cristina. It was awesome to have a small wedding for many reasons but we did miss our family and friends hugely on the day.

Wedding day

Wedding day

Andrew and his wife Madaha leaving. They were such lovely people. I wish I could show you their stunning wedding rings, which Andrew designed.

Wedding day

Then off to a sweet neighbourhood bar to sign the papers. We had a cocktail here...

Wedding day

...then all went off to a cosy local place called Fort Defiance for more drinks and dinner. I had a scallop, corn and potato broth followed by peach pie. The perfect meal to end the perfect day. 

Wedding day

I'll post more pictures of our trip over the next week!

*I'm going to do a separate post about the practicalities of getting married in NYC. Jenny is available for hire to perform wedding ceremonies and I can't recommend her enough, plus it means you get to be completely flexible about your time and location. It was fantastic being able to choose exactly when and where we wanted to do it!

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

What a difference a day makes.

I'm off to New York to get wed! Thank you so much for all your lovely comments and congratulations, it was really nice to hear your stories. I love Sneaky Magpie's tale of canceling her flowers, hair and makeup at last minute and doing it herself!

I've just packed my bag (Betty's cake and all!) and our flight is tomorrow afternoon. We're picking up our wedding certificate on Friday from City Hall in Manhattan, which I'm slightly concerned about because the recent change in same sex marriage legislation means it's going to be busy. But fingers crossed it will go without a hitch (ha) and Sunday will be our big day.

Hope you all have a good couple of weeks and I'll show you the pictures when I'm back! In the meantime, here are some of my family's wedding pictures. First, my Grandma and Grandad. (They got married on St Valentine's Day, 1942. Love this picture!) Next are my great grandparents. Then a mixture of my family and my step-family. There are some fantastic outfits, glasses and hats; it goes to show that the big white dress is a fairly modern concept! See you on the other side!

Grandma and Grandad wedding picture

Great Grandma and Grandad's wedding day

Wedding picture including the Williams.

The Stephenson's wedding.

Hereward and Joan Brown's marriage -1942

dorothy and Norman's wedding

Spring Bank Menston.

ps: I've asked my mum to leave a comment with the dates and details of these pictures. Some of them are older than you'd think they are!

Friday, 2 September 2011

Guess what?

07-08-2011
Us, just after Tom put a ring on it.
I'm getting married! Tom and I got engaged a few weeks ago. We've managed to tell most people by now and my friends are tweeting about it, so I thought it was about time to share here since I share everything else here! We got engaged in Greenwich a week after deciding that we wanted to get wed. (That's what the happy pictures in the park a couple of posts ago were all about!)

Tom wanted to do it the old-fashioned way, on one knee with a ring (ahhh), but the ring was at his mother's house and she was away. So after a week of massive impatience on my part - it reminded me of waiting for my rollerboots for my seventh birthday, torture - he finally got the ring and down on one knee he went.

I was completely sure about getting married* but a bit nervous in case I didn't like the ring (shallow, I know). Luckily it was love at first sight. It is a little emerald and diamond art deco daisy, which Tom's grandmother wore for 45 years. And I'm going to use my grandmother's wedding ring, which is made from butter-coloured Welsh gold.

Oh, and the wedding: it's taking place in two weeks time, in a tiny little park in Red Hook, Brooklyn, overlooking the water and the Statue of Liberty. One of my best friends, Jenny, lives in New York and is licensed to wed, so she's doing our ceremony. Then we're going to have champagne in the park and go somewhere nice for dinner. Another good friend of mine will witness it for us, with his lovely wife. It'll be a bit sad on the day not to have our family and friends there but neither of us has the desire for a big trad wedding, or the skills to arrange one, so we're just going to do what suits us best.

So yeah! It has been a busy time, lots of change. Mainly blissful, but even tiny weddings have their stresses! Dress, rings, locations, food and drink, vows... I think I'm through the worst of it (after a week of meltdowns!), so here's to it getting easier and fun again. And hats off to you gals who organise big weddings! Tell me about your wedding plannings. Did you get stressed out? I didn't see that coming!

*That cheesy cliche of 'when you know, you know' is so true!