Here’s a wedding that proves you don’t have to follow convention. Evita and David’s steampunk themed wedding is truly amazing, from Evita’s beautiful purple and black corseted gown to the uniquely creative wedding decor.
The Wedding Theme
Our theme was Steampunk: a subgenre of science fiction which proposes an alternative history where there is no electricity and everything is steam-powered and mechanical. There are several types of Steampunk but we went for the Victoriana version with corsets and top hats. We asked all our guests to come dressed in theme if they wanted to and were delighted that almost everyone chose to wear something that nodded to the theme. Some people had creative interpretations – David’s grandfather came as a chimney sweep with soot on his face and a real sweep which he borrowed from his neighbour! It definitely piqued everyone’s interest in the run up to the wedding with people crafting things and going on special shopping trips to find the right clothes. We were very touched.
Dave had the ring and wanted to propose at home, where we’d fallen in love, so he set up a scavenger hunt around the house. I found lots of little presents and then right at the end there was a clue that led me up to the bedroom and he was there on one knee. I couldn’t believe my eyes.
The Dress and Outfits
The dress and Dave’s waistcoat were both tailor-made, as was the dog’s whole outfit. I had a top hat, we both had goggles, and my necklace was a choker.
I had dramatic eye make-up to go with the black and purple corseted dress and my hair was styled into Victorian curls, arranged so that it would look nice with and without my top hat.
The Wedding Ceremony
We had a short civil ceremony and reception at St Elizabeth’s House, in Plympton St Maurice, just outside Plymouth. We chose all our own music, and decided not to go with anything too traditional, so we had ‘Fresh Feeling’ by the Eels for when I walked down the aisle, and ‘As Lovers Go’ by the Dashboard Confessionals when we exited as husband and wife.
The Wedding Photographer
An amazing female photographer from AVA images photographed the wedding. She was professional, chilled out and blended in with the guests. She was also very supportive and even lent one of my bridesmaids, who had forgotten to bring a necklace, her own necklace, which was so kind of her.
The Wedding Videographer
Foster Filming videographed the wedding. I completely forgot he was there, which was definitely the goal because I hate being filmed, so he performed his job admirably. It was rather funny though because he tried to come in and film part of us getting ready at the beginning and all the ladies squawked and chucked him out!
The Wedding Decor
We had a beautifully decorated marquee. Dave’s dad is an artist and painted a backdrop for the top table. I designed all the elements of the decoration, while my dad made the copper pipe flower arrangement vases, into which I arranged the flowers and added the twine. We bought loads of old books to have piled up on the tables as centrepieces along with hurricane lanterns, the copper pipes and picture frames which each had a love poem in them. We named the tables after books that mean a lot to us. I made all the stationery for the day while Dave’s dad also made the signs we had dotted around the place.
I think our whole wedding was quite unusual. The Steampunk theme made it intrinsically different to any wedding our guests had been to before, and at the time, was relatively unheard of. It has gained currency in recent years with more people knowing about it, but back in 2012 when we thought of doing it, it was very niche.
We didn’t follow any of the traditional wedding conventions like wearing a white dress and garter, throwing the bouquet, or having ‘something old, new, borrowed and blue’.
We did have a magician wandering around, doing card tricks, all dressed up in his own steampunk outfit. Instead of a first dance, we did what we called a ‘marriage dance’. We asked all the married couples to join us on the dance floor for our first dance, then my dad called out years, starting from 1, at intervals. If you had been married that long you had to step off the dance floor. So people were slowly eliminated until we were left with the longest married couple, who had been married for 49 years: that was Dave’s great aunt and uncle. We gave them a bottle of champagne and told them we aspired to be like them.
Make a promise to yourself to try not to worry about anything going wrong during the day, just to enjoy it so that all you are left with is happy memories.
Bridal Dress: KMK Designs | Wedding Shoes: Red or Dead | Grooms Attire: KMK Designs | Bridesmaids Attire: SaiSai | Groomsmen’s Attire: SaiSai | Bouquet: With a Flourish | Entertainment: Broken Boat | Photographer: AVA Images | Videographer: Foster Filming | Wedding Cake: Cake Tin Glory | Wedding Make-up: MAC Cosmetics | Wedding Hair: Envy | Wedding Venue: St Elizabeth’s House
Kate Thompson is Confetti's features editor and wedding expert, and has worked in the wedding industry for 15 years. A widely published lifestyle writer, she has made BBC television and radio appearances discussing wedding trends in the UK.