You’ve perused the bridal shops, tried on all the latest trends, but somehow nothing feels quite right. If this sounds familiar, why not consider opting for the ultimate timeless classic? The bridal gown is just where it starts (or perhaps ends) when it comes to planning a vintage themed wedding. Whether you are aiming for soft and understated or dramatic and spectacular, a vintage theme never dates and offers endless possibilities for putting your own beautiful stamp of individuality on your special day. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Wait, didn’t we already agree on vintage?
Yes! But the term vintage essentially means ‘high quality and from the past’, and the past is quite a long time. Once you have settled on a vintage theme, you will then need to get a bit more specific.
You might consider choosing a particular era to inspire the image of your wedding. Perhaps you can’t get enough of 1920s glamour? One of the most popular (and yet still not overdone) vintage wedding themes is based on the ultimate twenties romantic – The Great Gatsby. It doesn’t get much more glitz and glam than this, so if pearls, sequins, dazzling flapper dresses and Art-Deco-everything is up your street, this could be the theme for you. Or maybe you are more into the bold, rockabilly chic styles of the 1950s, or the bohemian, free love charm of the late 60s and 70s. Whatever era and style appeals to you the most, it’s a great place to start when designing the wedding of your dreams.
What springs to mind on hearing the words ‘vintage wedding’, however, is not always inspired by a specific era. You are probably familiar with the terms ‘rustic’ and ‘shabby chic’, and when done well, these styles can be pulled off to create the ultimate elegance and romance. And while there are many businesses that specialise in delivering beautiful shabby chic wedding paraphernalia and services, one beauty of a rustic theme is that – if you are on a budget and have the time, inclination and creativity – you can get away with a lot of DIY too.
The venue, and/or the way you decorate it, is one of the most fundamental elements of your vintage wedding. Some couples opt for the ‘blank canvas’ and hold their wedding and reception in the most plain, understated location they can find. While it might sound boring, the beauty of doing this is that you can then decorate to your heart’s content without overdoing it and erring onto the side of tacky. Your simple venue does not have to be a function room in an uninspiring venue. It might be a farmer’s field, a dilapidated (rustic!) barn, or even your own backyard.
At the other end of the scale is the grand spectacle. Those awe-inspiring wedding venues which already have a classic, vintage feel to them can really bring the wow factor to your wedding day. Holding your wedding in a venue like this will also remove some of the pressure of creating the image you desire with decorations, because it has already been taken care of for you.
Most bridal stores are geared towards contemporary trends rather than vintage chic, but you may be lucky enough to find hidden gems in a local boutique, vintage shop or even some of the quirkier op shops. Otherwise, the world is at your fingertips with the internet. Online is a great place to start when looking for vintage gown inspiration or to find a dress maker who can turn your dress dreams to reality. A Google search will also uncover many sites for finding vintage wedding accessories, ranging from jewelry, favours and invitations to cake toppers and flowers.