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Claire and Joe DIY 1940s VE day themed wedding / Foxton Village Hall

PINIMAGEGet ready for some seriously swoonable vintage wedding inspiration…

Claire and Joe were married last Summer in a beautifully styled out village hall in Foxton, Leicestershire. Just check out their wonderful styling, largely collected and created by the bride and groom themselves in this DIY 40s/VE day inspired wedding.

I worked with lovely local celebrant Ruby B once again on this wedding along with venue stylists Orange Tree Weddings, based in Nottinghamshire, who provided a stunning ceremony backdrop as well as the fabulous photobooth backdrop with planes in their bespoke bar area! Thank you so much for choosing me to capture such a wonderful day you guys!

1940s VE day weddingPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGE“I remember arriving at the venue in the lovely VW camper van with my mum and bridesmaids and all getting out and standing outside the village hall – all having a lovely time and laughing… Little did we know our wedding celebrant Ruby and our guests had reached the point in the ceremony when we should have been making our entrance! They were all sat listening to us wondering when we were going to come in!

There had been torrential rain for about a week on the run up to the wedding so we were bracing ourselves for a wet day – but thankfully the weather was beautiful for our day in the end!”

PINIMAGEPINIMAGEI’ve always loved the 1940s and the wartime era, since Joe and I met it’s been something we’ve really enjoyed doing together – such as going to 1940s festivals or museums. So when we got engaged I don’t think it came as a huge shock to Joe that I was going to suggest a 40s themed wedding! Thankfully Joe loved the idea and we knew we wanted something small and in keeping with a 1940s wedding so a village hall seemed perfect for us.”

 

1940s VE day weddingPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGE“Becky was a dream to work with – we knew immediately that Becky’s quirky and individual style of photography was perfect for what we wanted for our day. Becky was brilliant – putting us at ease with little games to get us talking and laughing which resulted in such lovely natural photos. Becky also helped us achieve the amazing smoke bomb photos which we adore.”

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“We really wanted to capture the ‘end of the war’ party type atmosphere – for example we wanted a street party feel to our sit down meal with everyone sat on long tables to celebrate with us. Our wedding invitations included a letter from the (fictional!) ‘Ministry of Weddings’ in a 1940s style and our save the dates were a Ration Book which got our guests excited! I’m a bit of a collector of vintage royal memorabilia so our flowers were all in vintage royal tins, and our table place names were tags attached to Coronation mugs so it was a lovely mix of vintage styles that worked perfectly. It took us months to collect around 50 mugs! Our wedding flowers all had a vintage garden feel about them with ones that I remember from my childhood – such as sweet peas and carnations.”

PINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGE1940s VE day weddingPINIMAGEWe spent the 18 months leading up to the wedding hunting down different props and memorabilia which we wanted to work with the theme of the wedding. We spent hours going round vintage fairs, charity shops and searching eBay to get the bits we wanted to fit the vision we had.  We managed to find a Winston Churchill bust at a vintage fair that became the centrepiece for our cake table which looked brilliant. We also knew the style we wanted for our table decor and made everything – such as knitted ‘Dig for Victory’ vegetable pots to ‘Make Do and Mend’ pincushion teacups to match our table names. We also painstakingly cut out 100s of hearts from vintage Coronation magazines for the table confetti! We made Union Jack paper chains to fix from the ceiling which helped with the street party atmosphere! We really invested into the bits that we had sourced or made and it was wonderful to see them play their part in our day.”

PINIMAGEPINIMAGEPINIMAGE“During our meal, Simon Partridge (The Vintage Singer) did a set of wartime 1940s songs and all our guests commented on how incredible he was. Watching all our guests waving their hands in the air to ‘We’ll Meet Again’ by Vera Lynn is a moment we won’t forget – and captured perfectly by Becky in our gorgeous photos!

Another brilliant moment was when we set off smoke bombs in red, white and blue in the outdoor space next to the village hall. As the smoke took hold and started to roll forward, we all had to run so it didn’t land on my wedding dress! The photos are ones we will treasure forever – the smoke bombs weren’t expensive but gave us some absolutely amazing photos.

I think the other stand out moment was our wedding band, The Secret Spitfires – at one point we could feel the floor of the village hall vibrating as everyone was dancing and jumping around so much!”

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“Our advice to future brides and grooms would be to keep true to the original vision you have for your day and work with your suppliers to make that a reality. We had spent months sourcing everything and were so immersed in the details for our day – we knew what we wanted to fit in our theme and all our hard work paid off.”

 

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