What have you got planned for the weekend lovelies? I’m about to surprise my husband who’s stuck inside an office all during the week with a trip to a beautiful Buddhist temple that’s close to home, in an attempt to find our inner peace by the lotus pond as we soak up the glorious autumn sunshine. I hope you have something relaxing planned too. I thrive on seeking out local landmarks and discovering new things since returned home to Oz – and one of these is learning about different cultures, which is why I love the diversity within the wedding world that Love My Dress so wonderfully highlights. There’s nothing more beautiful than a wedding which celebrates the fusion of two or more cultures, as was the case for stunning bride Josette and her groom Andreas. Josette, a children’s nurse and baby massage instructor, and Andreas, a managing business consultant, held their wedding blessing on the 30th of October 2016 at Fazeley Studios, a creative and oh so funky space in Digbeth, Birmingham.
“We wanted something different for our wedding which reflected our personalities. I am British Caribbean and Andreas is German. It was very important to try and fuse the two/three cultures together. We had a steel pan band for the Caribbean side, the reading was in English and German and the wedding blessing was held in England. I remembered when I used to go raving at the Custard Factory in Birmingham and seeing the amazing graffiti art, being in an environment where one could just be oneself, and loving the art, style and feel of Digbeth. I then realised weddings could be held in this area, at the Custard Factory! So we said yes to the area and the venue.”
Photography by Sarah Salotti
“The most heartfelt thank you goes to both of our photographers Sarah and Marco from Sarah Salotti Photography for being our eyes; they captured moments we don’t even remember, or actually didn’t see, and moments which appear to be too quick for the human eye in their array of amazingly stylish, artistic shots. They were both fantastic on the day, so warm and friendly. They were really into their job and it shows in their pictures, and we felt they wanted to be there – it wasn’t ‘just a job’. My sister said ‘she was amazing, like a ghost’ and we didn’t even know they were there at times! I am so thankful that we can sit in one, five, eight, twelve years time and look back on one of the most special days of our lives and feel blessed to have amazing pictures to keep our memories alive so we can tell our story.”
Lovelies – prepare yourself for the fact that you may need to get a tissue after hearing about how Andreas proposed to Josette!
“We met in October 2010 in Birmingham. Andreas had moved around the corner to where I lived and I met him after he had woken me up – as I had been on night shifts at Birmingham children’s hospital – with loud chatter and the revving of his new Kawasaki Mean Streak chopper motorbike. I stuck my head around the curtain to find out who was creating such an awful sound and little did I know, it was my future husband!
After a few days I would then hear fast driving and loud music daily; I’d look out of my balcony window to see this guy parking, and getting out of the car in the most amazing suits – he had me from then. One day he parked looked up and saw me and a few days later he figured out which number I lived at by counting the balconies and he left me a note on my door step attached to chocolate pumpkin balls, asking me on a coffee and pumpkin carving date. He signed it with ‘A’ the motorbike guy!”
“So fast forward to a baby boy, a move to Germany and we’re in December 2015. One evening before Christmas I got home to a candle lit apartment, music playing, a bottle of Bollinger, roses, our son dressed in a suit in his daddy’s arms and Andreas in a suit also. The two of them got down on one knee and Andreas proposed, whilst our son put the ring on my finger. We got legally married in September 2016, in Germany, which was just amazing.
We had a city ‘wedding’ – I wore a little white dress with a tiny rose bouquet, and went for a champagne brunch, took the street train home and relaxed for the rest of the day in the September sun.”
Josette had young bridesmaids and they look utterly adorable in their two-piece attire. The pretty tulle skirts were from America, and leotards and faux fur shrugs were found online, whilst the cardigans were from Marks & Spencer. For their hair, they wore Lovely Littles and Co hair bows, whilst jewellery was from Claire’s.
Josette did her own make up and her hair was by Sharlene Brown, to which she added a pretty veil. The bride donned a pair of bright blue Mischka Badgley heels (and later cleverly changed into comfy Limited Edition Converse!), and accessorised with a bracelet and earrings that she made and designed, together with a lady in North Germany. The beautiful bride then finished off with a spritz of Penhaligon’s ‘Empressa’.
“There is a beautiful bespoke perfume shop in Stuttgart that I had the opportunity to go into with a friend and she explained that her aunt had said ‘when a girl gets and wears her first Penhaligon’s perfume, she becomes a lady!’ I thought it was quite fitting, as I was getting married. I smelled a few fragrances from their collection and fell in love with Empressa.”
For the wedding blessing, Josette wore an elegant White One dress from DA VINCI in Stuttgart, Germany, and then added an intricate lace cover-up designed by Sienna Von Hildemar. Wedding dress shopping sometimes isn’t the magical experience you want it to be, as Josette herself experienced.
“I was completely stressed out on the day I chose this dress, due to the language barrier. I initially wanted a two-piece; a big, long tulle skirt and a separate top. Due to wedding dress trying/fitting with my boy in tow (one of the stressful parts), I went into the bridal shop and decided whatever I choose must not have frills or lace or pearls/sequins. I saw a dress, tried it on, and it had sleeves. I told them (nicely) to cut the sleeves off and I’ll take the dress, as I just wanted to go home with my boy and feed him! That’s how I chose my dress – and I chose it because of its simplicity and fuss-free look. I’d love to say it was a dream wedding dress search experience, but it wasn’t, however I was happy with my choice.
My lace cover up (to give the two-piece look) was definitely my favourite part of the dress. I chose everything about it, from the cut, to the colour and type of lace pattern and the buttons. Sienna was great, we did everything via Skype and relied and put our trust in the German and British postal systems. The first time I tried it on was just before I left the hotel room to the wedding venue and I fell in love with it instantly.”
In a striking blue Hugo Boss three-piece suit, Andreas made for a most handsome groom – and his son looked so sweet in a matching suit, also from Hugo Boss. Andreas accessorised with the loveliest heartfelt gesture from his bride.
“Our boy drew a picture of his daddy holding a balloon, so I got them put onto cufflinks.”
Josette arranged for her dad’s pastor to come to the venue to bless their marriage with the exchanging of rings, vows and a prayer.
“My dad was late for my wedding! I very nearly walked the aisle on my own. The song was the piano instrumental of ‘Romantic Wedding March’ by Miranda Wong. We had traditional vows and one bible reading so we can look back on the words to encourage and support our married life.”
“Our rings were from Wempe in Stuttgart. Andreas chose the engagement ring. He liked the cut and style – the simple, classic look.”
Our recessional was a dub-step version of the traditional wedding march recession – Midsummer Night’s Dream. It was amazing to have a cheeky dance on the way out with the rave sound and beats in a place where I use to go raving!”
In Bloom created pretty florals for the bride’s bouquet. The stationery was by Project Pretty, who also prepared the stickers to go atop of the mini mason jars full of mints which were favours for guests. And for the decor, it was a simple matter of adding candelabras as the table centrepieces.
“Fazeley Studios already had a unique style, so we didn’t need or want to add decorations to ruin this.”
“Ben the Cake Man created the wedding cake – it was three tiers, with white leading into a dark grey shade. It look different, and I thought it’d flow with the chair bows.”
To celebrate Josette’s British Caribbean heritage, a groovy steel pan band called Steel Drum Lilt played for everyone, as well as a DJ from Polar Talent, and the couple danced their first dance to ‘The Luckiest’ by Ben Folds.
“We had so many songs that we went travelling with, but they didn’t seem fitting for a first dance, so we had those travelling songs for the wedding breakfast. I found Ben Folds by searching first dance songs we could waltz to.”
“My favourite moment was watching (from a recording) our son walk out with our rings. I was so very proud of him. Also, after having the pictures taken, we left the venue to step into football madness, not realising there were two Birmingham teams playing each other on the very same day. Fortunately the teams drew and the atmosphere was nice. A football fan gave us a tiny badge and wished us good luck in our marriage, which I thought was nice. Another thing I loved was going into the unknown. We had no idea where Sarah and Marco were taking us for pictures – so that was really exciting. We walked onto the streets of Birmingham, my dress dragging all sorts, to the most amazing part of the canal with great graffiti and a very special message Sarah found on the wall that read ‘enjoy every moment.’ Perfect – and that was our time to have a moment to ourselves to soak in the day so far.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom
“I suppose this is just my personality, but staying relaxed is key. Apart from the dress saga, it was a joy to plan our wedding. I didn’t put pressure on myself or fiancé to have ‘the perfect day’. So being relaxed and doing what you feel and would like for your day is key. At times I couldn’t find certain items, no one wanted to wear certain colours, kids didn’t like certain styled shoes – I had a small moment and then as the famous song goes, I ‘let it go’. I left it up to them to decide what they wanted to wear. And with items I couldn’t find? I literally went for the next best thing. One needs to find out what’s most important. I didn’t strive for that perfect wedding, I said all along that I just want everyone to be happy and have a jolly good time. When everyone is happy, then I am.
I had the expectation that my sisters, mom and any female relative or friend would automatically be at my side helping me plan, drinking wine over Skype. This wasn’t so and made me realise that other people had lives to live beyond our wedding. I realised this very early on and just got on with the majority of the planning on my own. So if there are any brides who feel let down, shake it off, get on with your planning, and have the best wedding day celebrating with your nearest and dearest.”
This is such sound advice lovely Josette – thank you! I remember feeling the same initial disappointment when my female friends and family didn’t want to discuss every minute detail with me. Always good to ‘shake it off’ to reduce stress levels! I’ve just adored sharing your wedding and I wish you and Andreas so many more travel adventures ahead. A big thank you also to Sarah and Marco for capturing these artistic and completely fantastic shots of the couple’s big day.
You must bookmark these other beautiful fusion weddings from the blog archives to view at your leisure – happy reading and a jolly rest of weekend!
Love Jo -xo-Leave a Comment!
- Photographer – Sarah Salotti Photography
- Venue + Catering – Fazeley Studios, Birmingham
- Wedding Dress – White One via DA VINCI
- Veil – Via DA VINCI
- Lace Cover-up – Sienna Von Hildemar
- Shoes – Mischka Badgley + Limited Edition Converse
- Jewellery – Bracelet and earrings designed by the bride
- Perfume – Penhaligon’s 'Empressa'
- Groom + Page boy – Hugo Boss
- Bridesmaids – Tulle skirts, leotards and faux fur shrugs (suppliers unknown) + cardigans via Marks & Spencer
- Bridesmaid's Accessories – Lovely Littles and Co hair bows + jewellery from Claire’s
- Florist – In Bloom
- Cake – Ben the Cake Man
- Entertainment – Steel Drum Lilt steel pan band + DJ from Polar Talent
- Stationery – Project Pretty
- Rings – Wempe
- Hair Stylist – Sharlene Brown