The Making of a Dream: Holding an Old-Fashioned Wedding in a Modern Age

Every woman dreams about two things: finding the perfect guy and having a perfect wedding.

While we can’t help you with finding the right guy (sorry, ladies!), we can give you some ideas on how to make that special day even more memorable – by blending the old with the modern into a fusion of timeless elegance.

“Vintage” has been a catchphrase for quite some time now: ironically, there’s nothing more fashionable than the decades long past. What was once ridiculed as “grandma’s fashion” has become one of the hottest, most coveted trends. And what could be a better opportunity to celebrate the old times than a rustic, retro wedding?

On wedding dresses…


Since most of the focus is on the bride, we’ll begin with some useful tips on how to choose the ideal wedding dress.

What is true about any other item of clothing also goes for wedding dresses: don’t get stuck on the models that you find appealing, but rather try and discover the style that works for you. There are many different decades to turn to for inspiration, so explore your options thoroughly to find that one dress that will make you look truly beautiful and unique.

…and where to find them


Since wearing vintage allows for a lot of freedom, you don’t have to limit yourself to having a “white wedding.” Old wardrobes often hide long-forgotten treasures, so start your search there.

You can remodel an old dress or use it as a template for your brand new, custom-made wedding gown – as people, dresses can undergo impressive transformations. Browse second-hand and vintage stores or search for dresses online – the options are plentiful.

Your jewellery should complement the dress, be it a tiara, an antique ring, or pearl earrings and a necklace (made of real pearls, of course – there’s nothing so tacky as fake pearls).

It is not necessary that the bridesmaids wear the exact same dresses: go for variations in style, but try and bring the whole story together by introducing interesting details such as parasols, overcoats, or ladies’ hats, depending on the era and the season of the year.

Time for men to come into the picture


Classic suits and tuxes – that’s what groom suits are often reduced to. Since not everything is about the bride (we’re talking about that perfect guy, here), there is no reason why they should be neglected.

Once the bride and the groom have agreed on the style, all that’s left to do is finish the groom’s attire by using select accessories. Bow ties, cravats, and waistcoats are good choices for an elegant, sophisticated look, while suspenders allow for a more casual, relaxed approach.

The groomsmen could wear similar or matching hats, pocket watches, brogues, or gangster shoes.

For the ultimate retro experience, rent a classic car or resurrect your grandpa’s beloved old-timer – these will look great in photos.

When words are not enough


Our memories are fickle and unreliable: they also fade with time. When organising such an important event, you will want to relive the magic of that day many times over.

And for that, quick cell phone snaps with heavily applied filters just won’t do. You will want to have photographs that truthfully capture the atmosphere. Take a look at these beautiful examples of wedding photography in Sydney, an expressive demonstration of human emotions, made in celebration of passion and romance.

Those with a deeper wallet might even consider a romantic trip to Australia to find a perfect setting for their rustic wedding – a bit on the wild side. The country that’s only been partly tamed offers a lot of stunning outdoor locations that will provide a great background for wedding photos.

Wedding photographs are not the only way to recreate retro glamour: your wedding invitations should follow the same principle. You can have them printed with gold calligraphy and vignettes, or in the style of old vintage postcards – whatever strikes your fancy.

You can also make this your DIY project: everyone will be happy to receive a hand-crafted invitation decorated with lace cuttings or pressed flowers.

Let’s set the stage


It’s impossible to create the right atmosphere without the appropriate setting. Having your wedding held outside in spring or early autumn, if the weather permits, would be ideal. This would give you the opportunity to bring out the old benches, long wooden tables, and rustic chairs adorned with romantic shawls.

Comb through thrift and antique stores and empty the dusty cabinets in the hunt for old books and clocks, porcelain figurines, linen napkins, old kitchenware, plates and teacups, and other vintage items with a practical or decorative purpose.

Finally, to provide adequate lighting, you can arrange ornate candlesticks in groups or in the center of the table, or hang paper lanterns on the trees.

Once everything’s ready and prepared, you can bring out the food: home-baked bread, meals and snacks inspired by traditional recipes, and a lavishly decorated handmade wedding cake – a true feast for both the eyes and the palate.

A dream wedding redefined


As you can see, a retro wedding can fit into any budget, and it will also allow you to explore your creative side by doing something truly unique. If you’ve always dreamed of visiting another era, your wedding day might be the perfect opportunity to pursue that dream.

Diana Smith, Associate Editor


Speak Your Mind