One of the hottest wedding trends this year is the vintage themed wedding. Thanks to popular shows like Downton Abbey and movies like Baz Lurhman’s Great Gatsby, it is showing no signs of slowing down. Brides to be are being inspired by the beauty and glamour of 1920s style and fashion - think old Hollywood glamour, art deco jewellery, soft romantic colours and crystal chandeliers.
These vintage touches evoke the nostalgia and beauty of a bygone era, reminding us to slow down, savour the moment and linger in the company of those we love. With a little care and thought, it is easy to incorporate vintage styling into your own wedding day. Here are our top tips and tricks to recreate the perfect touches for your own vintage inspired wedding.
Start by selecting the right venue. The right building and location will set the tone for your whole wedding. A large conference centre or function room won’t whisk your guests away to a bygone era in the same way that a beautiful old building will.
Fortunately here in Tasmania there are beautiful wedding venues such as the Villa Howden which perfectly capture the essence of a bygone era. So look for a venue that will not only cater to your event needs, but also provides a romantic and chic background for the occasion.
Dresses - Bridal gown
The next key item is to choose a vintage or vintage-inspired bridal gown. Whether you borrow your grandma’s dress or have a modern dress tailored with a vintage-twist to suit your needs, there are a number of touches that will ensure your gown has the right vintage look.
Lace, lace and more lace is the order of the day. Look for pretty detailing with pearls and accessorise with petite gloves, stoles and headpieces. Full length and flowing silhouettes are key, and rather than the modern strapless look, go for a halter neck design or add capped sleeves, either with material or lace.
Jewellery items should be art-deco inspired, whether worn in your hair, headpiece or as a bracelet or necklace. Look for new or antique pieces showcasing rhinestones, crystals, intricate clasps and pearls.
Make sure you continue your vintage theme throughout the bridal party, not forgetting the use of flower girls. The addition of freshly strewn flower petals is classically romantic. Choose vintage soft rose colours mixed with flowers in lilac, pale lemons or creams rather than bold reds, stark white or modern bright colours. Dress your flower girls in lace socks and pretty full tulle skirts with matching cashmere cardigans to complete the look.
Indoor or outdoor
A vintage themed wedding works perfectly for indoor or outdoor events. On sunny days a parasol would not be out of place, and guests can sip Pimms in the garden listening to a string quartet. White chairs on green lawns always look beautiful in summer. Even in winter, the vintage theme works well. Brides can rug up with faux or vintage furs, wraps, stoles, and gloves while groomsmen can wear hats, overcoats and gloves and remain stylish and chic.
Choosing a stylist
If you want a little professional help, then take your time to select the right stylist. Do some research to begin with and research previous weddings the stylist has done, preferably with a vintage look. Make sure you can speak freely with them about your ideas and will listen to the vision that you and your partner have for the day. If you feel inspired and excited after speaking with a stylist, then you know you have found the right one.
Heirlooms and personal touches
More than any other wedding theme, vintage inspired wedding provide a unique opportunity to express yourselves and who you are as a couple, and a family. Many couples incorporate family heirlooms, old photos, important pieces of jewellery or mementos into the ceremony. It is these sentimental touches which really capture the essence of the vintage wedding.
Don’t be limited to jewellery items either. Perhaps you have a treasured old desk that has been in the family for years. Or a special photo from your grandparents wedding day in a stunning old frame. Use these pieces for the signing table, or place them in the reception area along with the guest book for others to admire and enjoy.
To capture the essence and nostalgia of a vintage wedding, include these details in the planning and styling of your ceremony and reception. The vintage trend will be around for a while so you can start planning now for your wedding next year. They are a beautiful and romantic way to celebrate your big day.
Here are some of our favourite inspirations for a gorgeous vintage themed wedding.
Villa Howden images: courtesy of Villa Howden
Words: Clarissa Baggio from Venice & Me Vintage styled flower girls (photo credit figtreepictures.com)
Vintage wedding styling by www.alphabetsoupbunting.etsy.com (photo credit danielledarcyphotography.com.au)
The year is 1945. A young Danish sail maker is aboard the Lawhill, a tall ship on a mission. It's bound for the bottom of the world, a little town named Hobart. It's filled to the brim with cocoa beans for Cadburys. He'd probably never heard of the place, but welcomed the adventurous ocean voyage from Cape Town.
The day they dock, a young Tasmanian is begged by her friend to enjoy a night out with the sailors. Although this lady is less than overjoyed, she eventually agrees to frock up.
The waterfront is buzzing; it's alive. The young Dane walks up to the window of Customs House Hotel and peers in. He takes one look at her, rushes back to the ship and changes into his suit. This lady is beautiful with sparkling blue eyes; he needs to look his best.
That night, the two of them laugh and fall hastily in love. Six weeks later they’re married. This fairytale isn’t one of ‘Danish royal weds Hobart girl’ but it is the story of how my father’s parents met. So when the Tall Ships were headed for Hobart in 2013, I felt it fitting to invite my father down to share a meal in that very same pub, far from the hometown of his Danish father whom unfortunately I never met.
Fireworks boomed over the harbour as we ate, but not nearly as powerful as the sparks that flew some 68 years before. Across from me were sparkling eyes much like my grandmothers, born out of a Tall Ship voyage.
The tall ships of 2013 are not carrying cocoa beans, but celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Royal Australian navy, a navy my father joined at the age of 16. They hail from the Netherlands, the UK and Australia – continuing to carry young men and women across oceans to new lands.
As we wander the docks, I see crew down on their knees- polishing, sanding, tending to these giant ocean-going vessels with weathered hands. Some carry more than 1,250 square metres of sail and I wonder how my grandfather skillfully prepared his own to tackle the high winds of open seas.
I see laughter, comradeship, shared tables where no doubt tall tales are spoken. It seems everything has it's place on a ship, from the oranges and coffee supplies to the characters that keep it rolling in the right direction.
One sailor tells me, that when the wind is not blowing out here, you don't go anywhere. You sit and you wait. You're at the mercy of the sea and have plenty of time to slow down to the pace she's chosen. Perhaps that's why these weathered folk seem so relaxed....so un-rushed.
Some ships didn't make it to Hobart, including the Indonesian ship Dewa Ruci, a reminder that the weather can be harsh off the Tasmanian west coast. Despite this, the Tall Ship fleet is the largest to arrive since the Australian Bicentennial in 1988.
There's no doubt our maritime history is rich. But what's equally pleasing is how lively it is today....from the Australian Wooden Boat Festival and Sydney to Hobart festivities, to the Wooden Boat School attracting international students to the township of Franklin, the craft of boat building and our maritime heritage is in safe hands.
Words and images: Alice Hansen
There's a place just outside Hobart.....where lush green valleys roll, dams gently ripple and Tasmanian devils can be caught scurrying across open plains. Out there, there's also a fella named Linsday White. He's not your average Bob and recently he's turned his 400 acres of Tasmanian countryside into a rip-roaring adventure playground complete with eight-metre high slippery slide.
Come November 2, there'll be thousands of local, interstate and overseas mud-loving folk putting a grubby shoe up to the starting line of Tasmania's first Raw Challenge. We've all heard about these nutty mud races, or have a mate whose talked of their heroic feats as a Tough Mudder survivor. Well perhaps now it's your turn...
Linsday has been out on his excavator making sure that this eight kilometre course has the most obnoxiously fun obstacles. There are more than 30 of them boasting names like Slip and Slide, Rope Trapeze, Fisherman's Catch, Tight Squeeze and some curious one named Rope Wrangler. He's used timber off the land, man-made and natural obstacles and done a bloody good job of his giant playground. Meet him and you'll understand why....he's a grown up sized kid.
You can take on the course as an individual, or gather up some team members to help you through. You can even join Social Wave, where at 11am or 2pm you can meet up with some friendly strangers and join them on the course.....you'll no doubt become close buddies once covered in mud.
There's slippery paths to tackle and watery moats to cross...
There's large open spaces to catch your breath and soak up the Tassie landscape just 40 minutes from central Hobart....
Some competitors will go head first into any challenge....these are usually the ones better to have team member support.
And this is one of the most important aspects of Raw Challenge - helping out your mates. There's a strong sense of comrad-ship that overshadows any intention of crossing the line first. In fact, some competitors will be vying for the award of 'most ridiculous outfit' so if you're fitness levels aren't up to scratch by Nov 2, that's not a worry, put on a giraffe onesie and get muddy.
For those that conquer the lows and highs of the challenge, there will also be much frivolity on the day including live music, kids fun, fitness challenges and demonstrations, and of course camping for those that want to fall into a swag at the end of the day.
If it all sounds like far too much fun, I'd click here right away and commit to getting a muddy smile across that face of yours. You can choose your start time, but they're filling up fast so gather some friends and hop online to book as teams get discounts also! Lindsay will be thrilled to see you.
Your launch pad for exploring Tasmania like a local.