Friday, February 19, 2016

The Bride Wore Vintage

Photography by Cassandra Sutton

Like many of you in the vintage community, our family and friends are not actually into vintage. While I do have my vintage friends that I have met through blogging, none of our friends and family involved in the wedding are into vintage and so it was important to me that I wasn't forcing vintage styles on those who were not enamored with the look the way I am.

My number one priority with picking the bridesmaids attire was ensuring that the dress all of the girls would wear was one that everyone felt good in and would be able to wear after the wedding as well. The last thing I wanted was for my friends to wear dresses that they hated and that were impractical to wear ever again, the same being for shoes as well. As a result we settled on a dress that reflected the aesthetic of the wedding and one that would be comfortable to wear for the festivities after the ceremony. Bridesmaids dresses in the fifties were typically very formal - lots of tulle and lace - so older members of the family who had got married in the fifties were confused that I opted for such simple dresses for the girls despite aiming for a fifties look!

The reason I did not go for more extravagant and traditional bridesmaids dresses was because of what it would cost my bridesmaids. Although there were some amazing vintage reproduction dresses on offer that would have made great bridesmaids dresses, they were also a few hundred dollars than I was comfortable with asking my friends to pay. I know that I personally would not be happy paying that much for a dress I would wear once, especially if it was not my style. I think it is important that when you are planning a wedding that you take into consideration what people who are involved are going to be able to afford to spend.

For Bonnie, our flower girl, we decided on a dress that was more dramatic than the bridesmaids dresses as she would be the first one to walk down the isle and it was important that her entrance made an impression. As for the groomsmen it was as simple as me telling them what to wear because men generally don't care whether a particular colour suits their complexion/hair colour...They were however allowed to pick out their own novelty cuff links to customize their look.

I wore an original fifties wedding dress that had been made in Paris and was in near immaculate vintage condition save for a few parts where the lace had started to detach. This had been the dress of my dreams for many years from when I saw a near identical dress in a fifties Vogue and decided then on that I would only get married in a dress like it. At first I went to a fitting in an actual wedding dress shop that specialized in vintage reproduction dresses but found the incredibly patronizing staff not worth my time or money, and frankly their quality and dresses were not that great either. So I returned to looking online, which has always been a reliable way of buying clothing for me!

I really do love vintage, but one of the reasons I have always avoided buying it is because I rarely find anything my size. All of the dresses I like always have a 24 inch waist! I knew when I decided on getting a vintage wedding dress that I would have to just buy a larger size and go to a dress maker for alterations. This is exactly what I did, and our dress maker did a fantastic job not only taking the dress in and re-doing all of the boning, but also restored the damage to the lace and made the dress look good as new.

Instead of hiring a team of hair and makeup people, we did it all on our own with the help of online hair tutorials. Rather forcing the girls into sponge rollers and wet sets, my sister in law Lilli Rose who did everyone's hair, went for a simple contemporary hair style that still had an elegant vintage look, adorned with sprigs of babies breath. I was happy to do my own hair and makeup the way I would on any other day to ensure that I did not have to worry about having a bad hair day.

The Bridesmaids wore:
Retrospec'd dresses
Mel heels

The Flower Girl wore:
Chi Chi London dress
Vivienne Westwood Melissa flats

The Bride wore:
Vintage 1950s dress
Vintage veil
Vivienne Westwood Melissa heels
Vintage 1950s pearls

The Groom & Groomsmen:
Suits custom made by Studio Suits
Cuff links found on Ebay


  1. Lovely pictures! I love your dress and I totally understand that you want it to be somewhat vintage-y but not forcing your ideas on other people! Still looks quite vintage though! I didn't even have bridesmaid but I am happy enough with my vintage dress ahhahah xxx

  2. Such a clever idea to buy a vintage dress - if you find one - in a larger size and have it altered. That thought had never even occurred to me, but it's genius! I love the novelty cuff-links idea too; those little bees! I think I'd feel the same way as you about wanting a vaguely vintage aesthetic but not forcing it on everyone else, very much including my future husband if that ends up being my current boyfriend, as he's not remotely into it! But he does love dressing up, so I reckon I can talk him round to a point... ;) x

  3. Oh man, such a STUNNING wedding party. Your dress is amazing!!!! I love the bee cuff links ;) MORE MORE MORE!!

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  5. Just exquisite. I ADORE these snapshots of your wonderful day. You are such a beauty! It's like you're projecting an aura of loveliness.

    I had the same dilemma in that my family and friends aren't all into vintage the way that myself and my husband are. In the end, I went with very loosely vintage style dresses for my bridesmaids, because my top priority was that they should be comfortable - they are massively different in shape and size. In the UK, the bride and groom pay for the bridesmaid dresses, so we had quite a restriction on budget too. You were so lucky to find a vintage dress for yourself - I am afraid my amazonian physique was against me on that front, even if I found a dress big enough, it was never long enough for my height!

    Thank you for sharing these wonderful photographs! xx

  6. All so many gorgeous pictures! It's just lovely! I think it's wonderful the way you manage keep true to your own style and taste, but also made it comfortable for your family and friends who were taking part in your special day. It's so kind of you, and I think it worked beautifully. ❤

    bonita of Lavender & Twill

  7. Your wedding was so picturesque! I love the idea of choosing bridesmaids dresses that aren't a one time wear. I didn't have bridesmaids at my wedding but I think I would have gone a similar route. I'd hate to make them buy and wear something that wasn't their style! I did my own hair and makeup as well. It was nice to avoid the stress of hiring somebody to come and do it, and worrying about how it would look. Your dress is just so breath taking, I love everything about it!!

  8. So gorgeous! I love all the floral prints in your wedding.

  9. The dainty floral dresses are so pretty! What a great choice. And I love the floral dressing gowns in the getting ready photos, those are very special and a lovely reminder of the day.

  10. Aww, so glad to see you finally got your wedding photos - you and all your bridesmaids look so beautiful! And that's really nice of you to take into consideration the fact that they may not share your style and that they'd want to buy a dress and shoes that they'll wear again. And I'm so happy for you that you found your perfect wedding dress, you can definitely just buy a bigger sized vintage dress and have it altered, while I probably wouldn't go to that expense/effort for any old dress, definitely for your wedding dress it would be worth it! You look absolutely stunning, and I love the matching dressing gowns you and all your bridesmaids are wearing, it's such a nice touch. :)

    jessica -

  11. Your wedding dress is absolutely stunning on you! :) The bridesmaid dresses were a wonderful choice! xo

  12. Oh my goodness! Such a gorgous, gorgous wedding you had. Everyone looked beautiful and I was so happy to hear your story of having found your dream dress. All the best to you both :+)

  13. So beautiful! Wedding dress is so cute and vintage wow! Your bridesmaids had such a lovely dresses.

  14. these are so beautiful and you look so beautiful as well! and it's lovely how considerately you planned all of the outfits without really compromising yourself:-) xx

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  16. How beautiful and how wonderful - CONGRATULATIONS!!! I am so blessed to look at all these lovely pictures - ty for sharing & bringing us along!

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