An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950’s Inspired Celebration…

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Morning lovely, lovely blog readers 🙂 Just a little ‘hooray!’ moment for you all for helping to make this blog so successful 🙂

This morning I’d like to share with you the wedding of Charlotte and Owen, which took place on 23rd October 2010 at St John’s Church in Hagley, Worcestershire, followed by a reception at Dumbleton Hall hotel, near Evesham.

Charlotte got her utterly beautiful original vintage wedding dress from Fur Coat No Knickers in London

“I started my dress shopping quite early (in May 2009) as, as a petite 5’1”. I  was slightly apprehensive about dress shopping thinking it might be quite hard with sample size and length dresses to get a good idea of what different styles would look like on me. I’m also notoriously indecisive so I thought I’d give myself plenty of time!

I discovered Fur Coat No Knickers at the National Wedding Show in Birmingham so made an appointment to go and see them. It was the third shop I went to and my dress was the third or fourth I tried on and I just loved it straight away, despite it being strapless – one of the things I had decided I definitely didn’t want in a dress! It was just absolutely beautiful, a classic shape with beautiful, but not over the top, embroidery and embellishment. It was also the perfect length once I’d put some shoes on and it just felt like it was meant to be. I definitely did not want to take it off!”

Love My Dress Wedding Blog – Photography Copyright (c) 2011, Emma Case

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...


“The whole Fur Coat No Knickers experience was just fabulous. The shop is beautiful, full of gorgeous dresses and accessories and Laura and Emma are just the most amazing people. They helped me find my accessories, were ready with bubbly at fittings (even at 10am!) and listened to my mini crises when I went to see them on shopping trips. Owen accused me of stalking them I went to the shop so much!”

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

“A lot of the inspiration for our wedding day came from the dress; once I’d chosen that I knew I wasn’t going to have an ultra modern-looking wedding so started looking at more vintage styling without worrying too much about sticking to a particular era/style.

As it is a 1950s wedding dress, we went for a 50s-style bridesmaid dress, we hired a classic car (not vintage but close enough), I bought metal vases and got some tiered cake stands for our cake to be served on. I think the photos of our parents’ and grandparents’ weddings added to that feeling.”

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

Charlotte wore the pretty ‘Sophia’ shoe, by Rachel Simpson – purchased from Fur Coat No Knickers

“I love them, they were comfy and the cross-over straps were brilliant for keeping the shoes on my feet during the dancing in the evening…”

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

“I did my own make up.  Hair was by Natalie Bartram. She did my hair as well as my mum’s and sister’s. She was absolutely lovely. At my trial she said she’d stay and try lots of different styles until we found the right one. Luckily for her it only took three different attempts, she got what I wanted pretty quickly, which was lucky as I wasn’t completely sure myself. She created a lovely up-do that was quite simple and classic.”

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

“I wore a beautiful thistle brooch in my hair, that Laura and Emma at Fur Coat No Knickers sourced for me. It was the perfect find, unknown to them, as it allowed me to incorporate a bit of my Scottish heritage into the day….”

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

“Although I wasn’t too worried about having an overall colour scheme, ours did end up being based around the colour blue. 

The bridesmaid dresses were called electric blue but were more of a purple-y blue which inspired the use of purple in the flowers. I went for more of a navy blue for the stationery as I found a specific ribbon I liked for the invitations and matched the stationary font and decoration to that.

I had four bridesmaids: my sister Laura, Olivia and Sophie who I have known since I was 3 or 4, and Owen’s sister Kate. They wore D440 by Alfred Sung in Electric Blue which I purchased from Perfection Bridal & Menswear in St Albans…”

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...

An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...


Charlotte’s beautiful fur stole was sourced by Fur Coat No Knickers..

“Emma re-lined and customised it for me by cutting it to the right length and adding tabs to the end of it with poppers that attached to the inside of my dress…”


These pretty, vintage style drop earrings were from EM Bridal on Etsy


“Our florist was Jenny Edwards, Owen’s mum’s best friend. She was absolutely brilliant, but we knew she would be as she did the flowers for the weddings of both Owen’s sister and brother.

I absolutely fell in love with anemones and lisianthus so I had the purple-y blue anemones and gorgeous velvety-purple lisianthus in my bouquet as well as ivory roses and lisianthus and some vintagey looking hydrangea. I also had a few pink roses in my bouquet, my sister’s bouquet and my mum’s corsage as a reminder of my grandmother who died four years ago.

I decided on white/ivory roses and lisianthus for the bridesmaids’ bouquets as I thought it would look lovely against the blue of the dresses.

Jen was absolutely fantastic as I don’t know that much about flowers so trusted her to try and piece together my ideas which she did brilliantly. She totally understood the vintagey, pretty feel I wanted from the flowers and was able to add an autumny feel to the flowers by adding silver berries (can’t remember what they’re called) and silvery eucalyptus.”


The Church the couple got married at, St John’s Church in Hagley, Worcestershire, was where Owen grew up…

“His older sister and brother both got married at St John’s so it’s a real part of the family history. We were also very lucky that it’s just about the most perfect location you could wish for; up a country lane with the village cricket pitch to one side and surrounded by parkland inhabited by deer…”









“We hired a 1971 E Type Jaguar from Great Escape Cars – . My dad drove me from Dumbleton to the church in it and then Owen drove us from the church back to Dumbleton for the reception…”




“I walked down the aisle to the Hornpipe from Handel’s Water Music. In keeping with the church service I wanted something fairly traditional but not something you heard all the time. It was either longer than I thought it was going to be or I rushed down the aisle but there seemed to be a lot of it left by the time I got to Owen. As soon as the organist stopped playing our page boy shouted out ‘Owen’ to much amusement!”
















“Our reception was held at Dumbleton Hall Hotel near Evesham (the website does not do it justice!). As we were getting married in the Midlands and most of the guests on my side would be coming from London and Wales it was very important that the venue had plenty of rooms for people to stay in.  I also really wanted there to be more than one room for the evening reception and  Dumbleton was perfect as we had use of the large Oak Room for the meal and evening dancing, as well as a lounge and bar so there was plenty of space for our guests. I think this also helped us create a fairly relaxed atmosphere within quite a ‘posh’ venue, something that was very important to us.

The staff at  Dumbleton were absolutely fantastic. They were so accommodating and prepared to let us do practically anything we wanted from decorating the rooms exactly as we wanted and removing anything of theirs we didn’t want, to letting me specify and provide cake stands to serve the cake in the evening, nothing seemed too much trouble for them.”


“One of the best things about Dumbleton is the stunning location. As you enter the gates you can’t even see the hotel due to the trees but it slowly emerges as you proceed along the drive. The grounds are lovely with lots of trees, a lake inhabited by black swans and a small formal garden…”



An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950's Inspired Celebration - Wedding Photography by Emma Case...




“I decided to make the cake myself as I love baking. I knew I didn’t want a traditional fruit cake as neither Owen nor I like it. I got the recipes for the bottom two layers, chocolate and lemon, from the BBC Good Food website and then decided as a nod to the traditional fruit cake I wanted to make a cherry cake for the top layer. I got the cherry and almond recipe from Delia Smith. I had great fun trying out all the recipes and playing around with them as I was changing the sizes of the cakes.

Owen is also not a fan of marzipan so I set out to find an alternative and came across the fantastic Planet Cake by Paris Cutler where chocolate ganache is used instead of marzipan to perfect the surface of the cake in preparation for the icing.  I decided to keep the icing simple, put silver ribbon around the bottom of each cake and Jen, my florist, made some lovely mini posies to decorate the tiers.”




Taking Inspiration from Wedding Blogs…

“I got so much inspiration from websites and blogs. When I first got engaged I went a bit mad buying wedding magazines but soon found they seemed to be a bit repetitive so I went online to get ideas. I started off on the You and Your Wedding forum which was brilliant (I remember seeing your wedding there Annabel!) and I found my bridesmaid dresses and earrings via links and weddings on there.  I then discovered blogs like Love My Dress and Rock n Roll Bride which were absolutely amazing. It was so refreshing to see beautiful weddings which, although they may not have been how I’d have my wedding, were perfect reflections of the couples getting married who were doing things just as they wanted.

I have to admit to pinching things directly from weddings I saw online. There was a wedding on Love My Dress where the bride provided brownies for her guests for the journey between her ceremony and reception venues. I thought this was a brilliant idea as I felt slightly guilty that lots of my guests would have to drive from London or Wales to the church in the Midlands and then get back in the car for a 45 minute journey to our reception venue. I suggested the idea and Owen immediately banned me from doing it as I had the cake to make in the run up to the wedding but my lovely sister in law (and bridesmaid) Kate made them for me. I didn’t get one myself but we’ve had so many comments from people saying what a lovely touch it was.”













“I had such a fantastic wedding day, there were so many lovely and surprising moments. My mum had me sobbing when she stood up and did a speech with my dad; Owen’s dad had bought some fireworks as a surprise and then made the mistake of putting the drunkest people at the wedding (some of our Uni friends) in charge of them so only about two of them went off after getting everyone coming outside to watch; my Granny posed for a photo on the front of the E-Type; and we didn’t stop dancing until the band unplugged the iPod we’d put on to dance to while they were packing up…”


Words of Wedded Wisdom…

“Try to relax both during the organisation and on the day itself. Admittedly I had a lot of time to plan my wedding (20 months) which meant I could be fairly calm and generally tackle one thing at a time but I found that it really didn’t help on the couple of occasions I got worked up. It also helps really to know yourself and how you work. I knew I wouldn’t want to be rushing around in the last couple of weeks leading up to the wedding but I also knew that I’d need something to do to keep myself calm so we left making the table names and orders of service until the last couple of weeks. It was nice to have something to sit down and occupy myself with so I wasn’t worrying about other things unnecessarily. And of course I had the cake to finish in the last week but I gave myself a timetable and kept to it. 

On the day things went wrong, the car, running late etc, but just take it all in your stride and don’t worry. The professionals involved from your venue, photographer, band, are used to glitches and able to sort them out. And remember, even if you know something has gone wrong, your guests probably won’t.


 “I made a lot of things for the wedding myself; stationery, sloe gin for favours and the cake and it was really satisfying to see people appreciate and enjoy them. It’s also great to get people involved. I wasn’t brilliant at delegating (a little bit of a control freak here!) but I had family members help me pick sloes, my next door neighbour put together confetti from dried petals and lavender, our florist and ring makers were family friends and we had family and friends doing readings during the church ceremony: it makes everything so much more personal and people loved getting involved and helping. 

I was actually really worried about the wedding and people not enjoying it or getting bored. As much as people tell you ‘it’s your day, do what makes you happy’ it’s hard to forget the fact that you’re bringing together groups of different people in two families and friends and you still want to try and please as many…”



♥     ♥     ♥

Brides DressFur Coat No Knickers

Brides ShoesRachel Simpson, from Fur Coat No Knickers

Venue Dumbleton Hall Hotel near Evesham

Hair Natalie Bartram

Flowers – Family friend

Bridesmaids DressesD440 by Alfred Sung in Electric Blue

Cake – Baked by the Bride

♥     ♥     ♥


Such a fabulous insight! Thank you Charlotte SO much for sharing all this detail with our readers, and huge congratulations to you and Owen on your marriage 🙂  And as always, love and thanks to Wedding Photographer Emma Case for supplying yet another gorgeous set of photographs.

Emma is fabulous. So lovely and incredibly talented. I really wanted a collection of photos that captured the feel of the day and Emma did just that!”

You can see more from Emma Case on the Love My Dress Wedding Blog here.  You can also see more 1950’s style bridal inspiration here and more from the girls over at Fur Coat No Knickers here.

Much love,

Annabel xXx


Annabel View all Annabel's articles

Founder of Love My Dress. Passionate Podcaster and Editor. Annabel lives in rural North Yorkshire with her husband and business partner Philip, their two daughters and menagerie of furry hounds. She loves photography, meditation, walking, being outdoors and star gazing. She is fierce when it comes to championing talent within the wedding industry and when she's not working on Love My Dress, she supports her husband Philip in the running of the family's sustainable flower farm and floral design business, Moonwind Flowers. In 2013, she became a published author.

10 thoughts on “An Original Vintage Wedding Dress for a 1950’s Inspired Celebration…

  1. What an adorable dress, and such a lovely, genuine atmosphere. I love that blue shade of the bridesmaids, too. It seems to timeless and steeped in tradition and yet so fresh and young. Another FAB wedding to brighten up our day! Thanks Annabel!

  2. What a beautiful dress, and love how the bride looks so natural. Her fur just finishes off the whole look, so pretty x

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