By Daniela Degrassi

 

Intimate weddings used to be my favorites during my years as a wedding photographer. They seemed to fill the air with magic;  lingering from the deep affection from a surrounding, very familiar crowd. And you will feel exactly that vibe while reading and viewing the photos of Heather and Scott’s vegan wedding in the wilderness.  A whimsical bohemian celebration captured masterfully by Anna Pumer Photography. And as usual, let’s hear all the details from the bride herself.

Heather, how did you and Scott meet?

We’ve known each other since secondary school and became a couple soon after we left at 17 & 18. We’ve been together for 13 years!

What made you become vegan?

I’ve been vegetarian since I was 14 and had very slowly been transitioning for a few years before, but I finally made the decision around Christmas time just over 3 years ago. On Christmas eve I sat with a girl in the pub (who’s now a close friend and was a bridesmaid at my wedding!) who had been vegan for a while and it got me thinking about why I hadn’t done it yet. Then on Christmas Day I got a new journal to fill in and one of the first questions was ‘do your actions align with your morals’ and I thought, no they don’t at all, I’m fully aware of what happens in the dairy industry, but still choose to be a part of it. So I made the decision then and tried to be as vegan as possible over the Christmas period (which was a bit of challenge being unprepared) and then fully went vegan in the New Year.

How did you decide to plan for a vegan wedding?

There was never any question that it wouldn’t be a vegan wedding! I can’t imagine having such a big celebration that wasn’t in line with how I live my everyday life.

Were your family/friends supportive? If so, how? Did they help?

Our friends and family were all really supportive, especially my mum who’s vegan as well, she was very helpful in making me go for the food I wanted! We didn’t mention that it would be a vegan wedding on the invitations, but I think people just assumed. We had a couple of people that joked a bit about eating a vegan meal, or bringing meat to the wedding, but other than that it was fine.

Did you have a wedding planner help out? 

Our whole wedding was completely DIY, so we didn’t have a wedding planner helping us. This meant we could put our touch on each aspect of the wedding and also make sure it fitted in with exactly what we wanted.

What were the major obstacles in planning your wedding?

I think the only major obstacle was budgeting, blowing the budget and budgeting again. You don’t have such a variety in choices when you’re planning a vegan wedding, so I think it makes it more challenging to stick to a strict budget.

What did you wear?

I brought a dress from Etsy (Iris by Wardrobe by Dulcinea) that is made to your measurements, I don’t often wear dresses so I wanted something quite low key and casual. It was super comfortable and perfect for an outdoor summer wedding. I went barefoot for most of the day, but wore a pair of vegan embroidered Doc Martins which I got second hand from Ebay.

I did my own hair and make-up using cruelty free brands.

Little pug Travis was the mascotte at the wedding and also during the preparations. Heather and her bridesmaids enjoyed playing and reading Animal Spirit tarot cards.

Where did you get married?

We got married at Wilderness Wood, which is a beautiful outdoor venue. We chose to get married in their wooden meeting house, which turned in to the stage and bar for the reception and used the rustic marquee for dinner and speeches! We both love nature and being outdoors, so it felt like the perfect location for us.

Who was your caterer? 

It was important to us that food was not only vegan, but local, organic and sustainable where possible so we chose Cashew Catering, who not only provided that, but really fit in with the relaxed vibe of our wedding. They did an incredible job of cooking the canapes and a 4 course meal in Wilderness Wood’s outdoor kitchen!  The menu was:

Canapes – Cashew pesto stuffed cremini mushroom served w pine nut and truffle cream, spiced butternut and spinach filo rolls with lime pickle, caramelized red onion and avocado puff pastry onion and ginger bhaji with mango chutney, tofu with aubergine mini skewers served w chive aioli

Starter –Beetroot and apple beignet served with pickled cucumber, broadbean, mint and chilli  puree

Main –Southern fried seitan served with truffled mash, roasted asparagus/sage/red onion gravy

In between – Strawberry and champagne sorbet shots

Dessert – Chocolate torte with ice cream and berry coulis

Our bar was provided by Kombikeg and they were more than happy to provide a full vegan bar for the evening. We brought the reception drinks from Aldi, which included an organic vegan prosecco. We had our wedding cake made by Cloud 9 in Brighton and we opted to have a naked cake with vanilla, Oreo and lemon layers.

Were your guests pleased/surprised by the food quality?

Our guests absolutely loved the food, we still have people commenting on how nice it was, especially the canapes. A couple of the people who’d joked about not being able to go a day without meat came up to me during the wedding and told me how much they enjoyed the meal!

Was your wedding all you wanted it to be?

Our wedding was beyond what I could have imaged, everything turned out so perfectly and we really did have the best day of our lives. We have incredible friends and family, who accepted a slightly unconventional wedding and fully joined in with what we wanted. It meant a lot to us to really be able to express ourselves and have every aspect of our wedding fit in with our lifestyle and that included it being vegan.

 

 

 

 

A feminist and independent spirit since she could remember (her childhood heroines were Pippi Longstockings and Katharine Hepburn) Daniela Degrassi found her creative outlet as a lifestyle photographer, working mainly in Northern California where she lived for 15 years before moving back to her native Italy to continue to be her autistic sister’s primary caregiver. Vegan since 2014, she found a perfect way to carry her message of compassion while celebrating her love for the wedding industry launching The Kind Bride in February 2018.