Love Sussex Weddings reader, Jackie and Dan from Brighton met whilst backpacking in Australia. Fast forward six years to September 2015 and they are driving around the streets of East Grinstead in the dinkiest bubble car we ever did see (lovingly restored by Jackie’s dad), en route to celebrate their West Sussex wedding in vintage inspired style.
Here’s Jackie to tell us more:
Dan and I met in Australia six years ago. We were both backpacking and met in a hostel in Brisbane, Queensland, three months into our year long trips.
I was travelling with a friend so left Brisbane to travel up the East coast of Australia, ending up in Cairns. Dan wouldn’t want to admit it but he travelled the same way and one day drove 8 hours to see me!! We ended up travelling together with friends the rest of the trip and came home together via a month long trip in Thailand.
Growing up in East Grinstead, and with my Dad’s love of vintage cars we used both his vehicles in our wedding. Dad’s VW camper was used to transport myself, Dad and four bridesmaids to the church.
As children my sisters and I grew up going on holidays in the camper van, so we felt this was the best way to get me to the church!
My husband drove me from the church to the reception venue in my Dad’s BMW Isetta 300 bubble car. A three wheeled microcar! My Dad bought it in a very poor condition and spent 12 months doing it up. With a ‘Just married’ sign on the back, we drove round the local area, getting a few toots from other cars! This was certainly a highlight of our wedding day!
We wanted to get married in a church, living in Brighton at the time none of the churches meant anything to us. So we decided to get married in the local church where my parents live in East Grinstead, and where I grew up. We have always felt very welcomed there, attending the Christmas service every year.
We chose the Meridian Hall for the reception venue as it was a blank canvas to decorate how we wanted. The outside space is lovely with amazing views. The Hall is very close to the church making it ideal to travel between.
We wanted to add a little bit of a travel theme to our wedding (having met travelling). We named the tables places we’d been together in Australia. Of course we sat at table Brisbane! We wanted to hire a photo booth but instead to keep costs down we supplied fun props on the tables with disposable cameras. We had a vintage style suitcase near the dance floor, again filled with props/hats/wigs which made for funny photo opportunities! Inside of the suitcase were some travel pictures of us together which added a personal touch.
We chose Sussex based Pippa Heath as our photographer. We chose Pippa because she has a natural approach. I didn’t want too many posed photos. She made us feel so relaxed and at some points forgot she was even taking photos of us!
We got our cake from M&S, I bought some mini bunting and put a J and D on the end, making my own cake topper. My dad assembled the cake on the day!
Most of the budget went on the catering. We wanted to make sure everyone had a great time and was well fed and watered!
Our first dance was The One, by Kodaline. My dad and I also did a rock and roll dance together to We Like To Boogie.
My top tip for other Sussex brides to-be would be…
Just relax and don’t stress too much about the little things. We booked all the big things first, such as the caterer, venues and photographers and everything just fell into place. Remember it’s your day so do whatever makes you both happy!
For our honeymoon we went back to Australia where we first met, then onto New Zealand, travelling around in a campervan. We both love to travel!
Thanks so much to Jackie for sending this gorgeous West Sussex wedding over to us. We love that Jackie’s dad’s passion for restoring vintage cars meant that this Brighton couple travelled in style for their big day (we want a bubble car too!) We also love all the travel inspired touches this travel loving couple added to their day, culminating in an epic honeymoon to New Zealand and Australia where they first met! Thanks to Pippa Heath for these gorgeous sunny September photos too!