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A handcrafted, postwar sweetheart 1940s inspired wedding blog with Damian Burcher Photography

Alexandra and Daniel’s wedding has style and flair, and a pretty creative and elegant theme: postwar sweethearts. It’s lovely – the bride and groom look gorgeous and guests arrived in costume to add more flavour and spirit to the day!

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I was thrilled when photographer Damian Burcher got in touch to share this wedding – it’s unique and sure to give lots of you some fab ideas for your day. Little touches like the kraft paper identity cards and the peonies and freesias in Alexandra’s bouquet make today’s wedding blog really pretty.

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Alexandra’s interview at the end of today’s feature is great: she gives some money-saving tips as well as sharing some of her own very precious memories of the wedding day. Please do read it carefully, as Alexandra has done such a lovely job telling us about her day.

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For more from Birmingham wedding photographer Damian Burcher please explore these links:

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Our wedding story: Alexandra and Daniel

Wedding photographer’s website:

www.damianburcher.com

Were you pleased with your wedding photographer?

Damian was everything we hoped for and more! He captured our day perfectly. We loved the natural shots and how relaxed he made our guests and us feel. None of the shots felt forced and he listened to exactly what we wanted.

Wedding venue:

Hogarths hotel, Dorridge, Solihull.

Wedding date:

30th March 2015

Can you describe your wedding in a single sentence?

Our dream-come-true and happiest day of our lives (so far)!

What was your reaction to seeing your wedding photos for the first time?

We literally wept with joy.

Your wedding style or theme:

Forties (post-war) theme.

Where did you find your suppliers?

Mainly through research, wedding fayres and through friends.

Best bit of budget advice?

Make as much of your favours, bunting, etc as you can! The bride’s mother saved money buying items from e-bay then selling them on after.

Wedding invitations and on the day stationery:

We made our own wedding invitations using a telegram style format. On the wedding day people wrote messages on telegram style cards to put in a book. All the place settings were ration cards.

Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?

I was a little sneaky. I tried on many dresses but ended up back at the first dress I tried on. I found out the name and wedding dress number then found an unused dress in the correct size on eBay! Saved at least £500!

Glitz and sparkle – the bride’s accessories:

I borrowed my mother’s diamond earrings. I was wearing a gift from my best friend (and bridesmaid) a Pandora Bracelet. My husband had a special gift that I wore on the day – A necklace containing our son’s ashes set in a resin heart with an M for his initial.. He had been born on the 30th (my birthday) which was why he had booked our wedding day on the 30th in 2015!

Suited and booted – the groom wore:

A tailor-made black pin-stripe suit from itailor.com. We had followed the online instructions to measure him up and the three piece suit arrived within 6 weeks. We made it a forties style by buying Italian black and white brogues from amazon and including a fedora hat (that my mother added a white ribbon). Saved money further as the suit and accessories cannot have come to more than £350!

Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?

A beautiful vintage dress from phase eight. Spring 2015 collection. We had tried an online dress from a bridesmaid website but when it arrived it was poorly made from China and looked hideous.

Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?

We hired a local beauty shop owner to do the makeup. My bridesmaid regularly visits her for nails and other beauty treatments. We had trialled make up and fake tans prior to the day. We also had our nails done too prior to the day.

Tina – Cocoon, Olton Hollow, Solihull. A wonderfully warm and friendly woman whom made our journey feel so special.

My hair was done by a friend and fellow barber who works with the groom.

Wedding flowers:

Lisa Flowers Floral Design, Solihull

I wanted my grandmother’s favourite flowers peonies and freesias. The bridal bouquet, button holes, bridesmaids bouquets and corsages were all made beautifully!

General styling – did your venue need much decoration?

The venue was beautiful but we had made metres up on metres of bunting. (Courteously made by the mother of the bride and her best friend for many hours on sewing machines) The venue wedding executive had arranged to have it put up in the marquee and on the island we married on. To be honest the venue is so beautiful if someone didn’t want to, they wouldn’t have to do much at all.

DIY – tell us about any handcrafted elements of your wedding…

Most of the wedding was indeed handcrafted. The place settings, hessian favour bags (filled with traditional boiled and chewy forties sweets) The bunting, cake flags, tissue favours, table labels (with jars of sweets), hessian and ribbon decorated jars that contained cut flowers. So many things! (All made by the mother of the bride – Judy Burgess)

The wedding cake: traditional or quirky?

One large cake with statues of the bride and groom and 150 cupcakes (mixed buttercream and sugar icing) with intricate detail. I had given the cake maker Sheetal Tailor of Tailormade cupcakes, a swatch of hessian and ribbons and she matched the colours beautifully.

Entertainment:

Neal Astbury – An amazing live singer who literally ran the music during the ceremony, Sang people in to the reception, ran music during the wedding breakfast, sang to the evening guests as they arrived, then ran the evening disco. Just a phenomenal and charismatic man. (We had liaised with him on the songs we wanted and he did that and more!)

On the day tips and advice:

Stay calm and don’t expect everything to go to plan. Things happen, people don’t turn up and in our case the cake did get dropped! It still was the best day of our lives and we would do it all again but we couldn’t have asked for any more!

What’s the best thing about being married?

Nothing has changed really except for the fact that we got the opportunity to get all of our family and friends in one place for a truly happy day. We didn’t calm down for weeks and still now feel we are in the ‘honeymoon period’ even though we have already been together for some time. Everyone who came said it was the best wedding they had been to EVER! We enjoyed publicly declaring our love and sharing our vows in front of everyone. As the bride I enjoyed going back to work because as a teacher, my name has changed and I am reminded every day when a child calls me Mrs Rusby that I am now his wife!

Quick supplier list for other brides and grooms:

www.damianburcher.com (Photographer)

www.blueridge-weddings.com (videographers)

www.tailormadecupcakes.net (Sheetal Tailor – Cake maker)

www.nealastbury.com (Wedding entertainer/Blues Singer)

www.itailor.com (Tailor made suits)

www.hogarths.co.uk (Wedding venue)

www.lisaflowersfloraldesign.co.uk (Florist)

http://www.cocoon-beauty.co.uk (make up)

Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at www.byMoonandTide.com. Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.

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