Patchwork Couple: Chris & Harriet’s Manchester Wedding and Californian Road Trip

manchester warehouse wedding

Harriet and Chris met six years ago in a chip shop at the end of a night out in Sheffield, where Chris was studying. They overheard each other’s Brummy accents, started chatting and hit it off instantly. They’ve since moved to Manchester together and married this summer in a humanist ceremony. We asked Harriet all about their wedding day and the road trip honeymoon that followed.

How did you get engaged?

We got engaged in New York, it was always very important for me to get married, but for Chris it was never really a big thing. When Chris bought me a holiday in New York for Christmas I honestly thought it was his way of buying himself more time! We’d been away for 4 days before he popped the question in the most beautiful candlelit bar in the East Village, with a ring made by one of my best friends, Naomi Jago – we decided not to tell anyone until we got home which meant we were in the most perfect love bubble – it was really lovely.

What kind of wedding did you plan?

We planned a city centre party, with our friends and family as the main focus – we really just wanted everyone to have the nicest of days, lots of booze, great food and dancing. We had a very personal humanist wedding ceremony in the People’s History Museum in Manchester, followed by a party in an old cotton mill in Ancoats – it was important for us to get married in the city we live in and both the venues were so laid back, so we really could do anything we wanted.

What was your first dance?

We had the Villagers cover of Elvis The Wonder of You – the words said everything that we felt about each other.

What advice would you give to other couples on their wedding day?

The one thing I’d say is to do whatever you want – weddings are great when they reflect you as a couple. We love having people round to our house for dinner so really wanted it to feel like a big dinner party. That’s how I ended up serving our guests my home made desserts and since the wedding so many of our guests have commented how nice that was – so just do whatever reflects you as a couple!

Why did you choose Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

Of all our wedding decisions Patchwork is up there as one of the best ones – for us it was a no brainer. We have lived together for 5 years and have recently renovated our first home, so we have everything we need. All we wanted were lots of memories that we would treasure forever, and with Patchwork our guests could help us have the BEST summer.

Everything about using Patchwork was incredibly easy – from making the Patchwork to the gift giving itself. It also made it very exciting as we planned our honeymoon so far in advance, so people could buy us very specific things.

We were originally worried about how the older members of our family would feel about us asking for money as well as the technology side of Patchwork – but they all loved it – they loved knowing what they were buying for us and loved how simple it was. Our friends loved it – a few of them are now planning on using it for their weddings next year.

What did you ask your wedding guests to contribute towards?

Our Patchwork funded our Californian road trip from San Francisco to LA. We picked this as although we have had many brilliant holidays before, we really wanted our honeymoon to be the dream holiday – and we would never have been able to fund a holiday like that on our own. We started in San Francisco for 5 days, then travelled down the Pacific Coast Highway stopping at Monterey, Santa Barbara and then we arrived in LA, stayed in Santa Monica and then finished off in West Hollywood.

Knowing that all of our friends and family had paid for us to do certain things made me so much more emotional about everything. We took pictures of ourselves cycling down Venice Beach and eating posh dinners and sent them to the friends that had bought us that gift. It was so lovely to thank everyone in that way.

Harriet and Chris’s top 5 tips for a Californian road trip: 

  1. Spend a day at a winery
  2. Walk the Golden Gate Bridge
  3. Head to Jon and Vinny’s in West Hollywood for pizza
  4. Go shopping in Santa Barbara
  5. Hire bikes and go for a picnic on Santa Monica Pier

Would you recommend your Californian road trip to other honeymooners?

Our trip was the perfect mix of busy city life and dreamy hotel relaxation – one day we were celebrating with a posh dinner and champagne after a day of sightseeing – the next we were having room service in a lovely comfy hotel after lying by the pool. Also – if you love wine it’s the most perfect trip for beautiful vineyards!

Babb Photo – www.babbphoto.com


 

Thank you Harriet & Chris for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a big congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

All wedding photography by the brilliant Babb Photo – www.babbphoto.com

P.s Listen to Harriet & Chris’s first dance song in our new Spotify playlist, made up of lots of Patchwork Couple’s first dances.

Knot & Pop Giveaway: Win a Two Hour Consultation

wedding planning giveaway

For couples with bigger budgets, hiring a wedding planner is something of a no brainer – they hook you up with the best suppliers, they get you the best deals, and they know exactly what you want and how to make it happen for you. But for the rest of us, it can seem like an expense we just can’t stretch to.

Well for couples on an average wedding budget there is now a brilliant way to tap into the insights, ideas and expert guidance that a wedding planner brings – Knot & Pop have launched K&P Consult, a service to kick start your wedding planning, for couples who need that initial steer in the right direction, or are in need of an SOS tailored session to help get you unstuck in any areas of worry.

wedding planning giveaway

Susie Young, Founder of Knot & Pop. Photographed by www.jacobandpauline.com

Here’s what Susie, Founder of Knot & Pop has to say:

“With so much to do and consider with weddings it can be a maze to meander. It’s no surprise that couples can easily become confused and overwhelmed, whether lost in the pretty of Pinterest or the balancing of the budget.

Having the right information and advice from the get-go will save you endless hours of research, allowing you to avoid disappointment and keep the stress at bay.

We’re totally flexible to your needs. Whether you need the consultation to address budget allocation, scheduling, unlocking your theme and scheme in a design session, offering supplier recommendations, or discussing venue options, we will share all of our intel and insights to get you on the fast track to plan your wedding like a pro.”

Photo by natalyjphotography.com

We’re giving away a two hour consultation with K&P Consult (worth £200!) over on our instagram page so if you think this is perfect for you or know someone who would benefit from some expert advice, all you need to do is follow both Patchwork and Knot & Pop on instagram, then tag a friend in the comments of this instagram post. Ends next Thursday the 2nd of November. Good luck!

Full Ts&Cs here.

Patchwork Couple: Anna & Ollie’s Arty Wedding Registry

Anna and Ollie met at a ‘spots and stripes’ party in Leeds 8 years ago, but didn’t get together until fate intervened when they bumped into each other at Secret Garden Party (where Ollie followed Anna around like a lovesick puppy). After that they went on a lunch date at the Phoenix pub and ‘snogged outside Sloane Square tube station’. Hooray! They moved in together not long after that, and married this year in a beautiful garden ceremony. We asked Anna all about their wedding and their very arty wedding registry.

How did you get engaged?

We added on a few extra days to a family holiday with his parents. We had 5 days staying in Seville and near Cadiz. We were staying in a little eco hut in this Swedish hippy guy’s garden. Ollie found it on Canopy and Stars. He had kept asking if we could go on walks, some of which I was up for, like view points and random cliffs! At one point he took me up a hill where his plan was ruined by some very threatening cows. In the end it happened over a beer on our little balcony. It was lovely – I interrupted his speech and said ‘OH MY GOD YES’ before he had even asked me.

What kind of wedding did you plan?

We were very lucky because my mum lives in a pretty house in the middle of the countryside. We didn’t want a religious service but wanted a ceremony. We got married on the Tuesday before in Salisbury Registry Office and then had a ceremony and party on the following Saturday. There is a pretty wood next to our house, so we put hay bales out in it and made a little aisle. My dad, a celebrant, did the ceremony, my stepdad’s choir sang and my mum gave me away. It was a beautiful sunny day. We were so lucky. We then had drinks on the lawn, a big hog roast and a boogie in some tipis in the field. It was great.

What was your first dance?

KC and the Sunshine Band – Get Down Tonight. And yes we did a routine.

Why did you choose Patchwork for your alternative wedding registry?

I am a big fan of the company. I agree wholeheartedly with its non materialistic ethos. I hate getting given presents now and totally agree with the idea of people pooling together to get people actually something they want!

What did you ask your wedding guests to contribute towards?

We were so keen to get some art for our flat. One day we walked down this little alley in Peckham and there was this random exhibition on. This guy paints all these incredibly atmospheric details of mountains with creeks running down them, in Wales. We instantly wanted one. With our wedding round the corner we thought a Patchwork would be the perfect option.

I loved how engaged everyone was with the whole thing. Usually people buy a present for a wedding gift and nothing really ever gets said. I was amazed by how many people got in touch saying what a great idea they thought it was. People loved the idea of giving us art as well. I think they resonated with its special significance. It felt like a little connection between us, the wedding and our family and friends. As soon as we bought it we sent a picture to everyone!

How did it feel to go and pick your artwork – knowing all of your wedding guests had bought it for you?

It was the best feeling transferring the money and the artist dropping off our painting!! He was so chuffed to be giving it to us. When we went into choose it, we walked in, it was like fate. There were only two in the whole workshop and we both pointed at it, and went ‘that one!’ It now hangs in our stairwell and it makes me happy every day.

wedding registry art


 

Thank you Anna & Ollie for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a big congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to use Patchwork to get your own piece of art just customise this template or create one from scratch.

Patchwork Couple: Stace & Rosie’s Super Colourful Wedding Day

Stace and Rosie met twelve and a half years ago in secondary school when they both studied music for GCSE. Rosie had switched class to be with her friends – lucky she did, or the couple may never have met. It was fate! Since then they’ve been to University, lived in other countries and travelled the world together, and as Stace says, ‘it just works’. We asked Stace about their wedding day and what they decided to patchwork.

How did you and Rosie get engaged?

We went travelling a few years ago and by this point had been together around ten years, so I decided that it was finally the right time to propose. I had a bit of a hard time deciding where to do it (Peru, Brazil, Mexico etc.) but eventually settled on Machu Picchu. I waited until most of the crowds had gone at the end of the day and proposed on the edge of an Incan Terrace overlooking the main part of the site. I carried the ring around in my belt for 3 months!

When it came to the wedding day, what did you plan?

We wanted a wedding with a traditional structure but a relaxed, familiar and fun feel. The “theme” of the wedding was Latin America inspired by our engagement and travels. We used very vibrant colours for the flowers, decoration and ties. Our venue was actually a walled garden, as we both wanted an outdoor ceremony, and the garden was really great for our guests to enjoy into the evening on a warm summer’s day. The food was on sharing platters, because we wanted to try and avoid awkward moments on those tables where people had never met one another before.

What piece of advice would you give to other couples?

Be a team, take your time, don’t sweat the small stuff. Something will always go wrong but it will still be the best day of your life. Don’t worry too much about everyone else’s opinions – do what feels right for you.

What was your first dance?

Our first dance was “Sunday Morning” by Maroon 5. We chose it because it’s a song that we’ve both been listening to together for a long time. We actually got a lesson in to funk the dancing up a little, but unfortunately when it came down to it, Rosie’s dress was too big to do it!  

What was your favourite part of the day?

We wanted to make sure that our cockapoo, Leo, could be a part of our big day. It was great when Carla from Dogvision brought him in to mingle with everyone and have photos taken – he was very well-behaved. It’s as though he knew! Exchanging our vows – we kept our vows a secret from one another and it was worth the wait to hear each other’s promises. Walking out of the garden after the ceremony and coming back through the wrong door – it gave us a long walk all the way round the venue and some time to ourselves between the ceremony and the drinks reception. We came back in through the back doorway. With all the guests waiting to throw confetti – everyone was very confused, but it all worked out!

What made you choose Patchwork rather than a traditional gift list?

We chose Patchwork because we were already living together in a little cottage, and had everything that we need, but it seemed like a nice and personal way for people to contribute towards a shared present, that was an experience rather than anything material. It also meant that we could afford to have some extra luxuries while we were away, that we may not have been able to otherwise.

The best bit about Patchwork was how easy it was to set up and use. We really liked the visual aspect as well – like piecing together your holiday. Once it was complete, it was really nice to look at.

Where did you go on your honeymoon?

We planned a mini-moon to Andalucia in the south of Spain. We’d been to Andalucia in 2011 but had a bit of an accident with our hire car, which meant that we missed out Cordoba, one of the most important cities that we’d planned to visit. Despite this, we’d both really enjoyed our trip there and wanted to go back and finish it. This time we went to Malaga, Ronda, Cordoba and Cadíz. We drove again this time and thankfully everything went to plan!

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

We both really enjoyed our time away in Andalucia, partly because each place that we stayed was so different, but the drive times weren’t that long – it was the perfect balance between relaxing and seeing new places. It’s also a great area to combine beach with city sightseeing.

We started in Malaga – due to the flights, it made sense for us to stay there for the first night. We had our doubts about Malaga, because of its reputation, but the city is actually very charming and when we checked out, we walked up the old fort and castle that overlook the city and coastline, before heading to Cordoba in the afternoon.

We stayed at the most amazing little boutique posada in Cordoba (Patio del Posadero), inspired by the Moors. There were just 4 rooms, each with a different style – ours was styled around the colour blue (Laceur). The breakfast was handmade by the owner – Jose, every day and each day was slightly different and almost like a tasting menu with a shot of kefir to start, followed by a trio of desserts and then the traditional bread with the family’s very own olive oil, fresh tomato puree and sea salt.

Although it was really hot in Cordoba, it was great because we could split our day up, so we would go out in the morning and visit the sites, come back in the afternoon to our cool room, or hang out by the pool on the terrace and go back out in the evening when it had cooled down. Cordoba is a beautiful city, with so much to see and lots of great places to eat.

Ronda was next on the itinerary and had some amazing scenery – we stayed at the Mirador, which had a very impressive view over the valleys below.

We went to Jerez on our way to Cadiz, which is the home of sherry, if that’s your thing.  

Cadiz is a lovely old city – great for sunsets, seafood and long walks on the beach. We enjoyed the junior suite at Hotel Argantonio which even had his and hers showers!

It was really great to be able to think of each experience or dinner we had while we were away as a gift, and in a way, this made the joy of the gifts last longer.

What did your wedding guests think of your honeymoon fund?

They really liked that they could contribute towards something, and that it gave them an insight into what we might be visiting or doing whilst we were away. A lot of people commented on how sweet it was that they could buy our dog, Leo, a ball and bone, to keep him busy during our time away.


 

Thank you Stace & Rosie for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Wedding photography: jennifersmithphotography.co.uk

Brides the Show Competition

Hello and a big thank you to everyone we met at Brides the Show! And an extra thank you if you entered our competition to win £100 towards your wedding registry.

Big congratulations to Sarita Mavjee. Thank you for telling us the one thing you want. Your entry of ‘Sri Lanka & Maldives’ won our Brides the Show competition!

You have won £100 towards your patchwork. All you need to do to claim your prize is create your patchwork and get in touch!

National Wedding Show Competition

Thank you to everyone we met at the National Wedding Show who entered our competition to win £100 towards their wedding registry.

And a big congratulations to Serena Gannon. Thank you for telling us the one thing you want! Your entry of ‘Honeymoon in Tanzania, to climb Mount Kilimanjaro’ won our National Wedding Show competition.

You have won £100 towards your patchwork. All you need to do to claim your prize is create your patchwork and get in touch!

Sofia’s Photo Diary: Bolivia Bound

Sofia has been exploring the world and has kindly taken us along with her on her travels. So far she’s showed us RajasthanSouth IndiaNepalMyanmar, the PhilippinesJapan, Cuba, and Peru. Now it’s over to Sofia to share her photos and tips from the final stop on her epic journey – Bolivia.

bolivia photo diary

At times Bolivia feels like it’s in a bubble, separated from the rest of the world. The country has such a strong culture and traditional dress that speaks of years gone by. And the landscapes seem to belong to another planet.

Throughout Bolivia you will find cholitas – women with long dark hair in plaits with beaded tassels attached to the ends. They wear black hats and large petticoats with huge Cinderella-style skirts, and on their feet they have schoolgirl-style socks and sandals. Unlike in parts of India, where things seem to be evolving to adopt western ways, Bolivia feels like it still very much embraces its culture, through the local dress, the food or the many band parades. There is an authenticity to the country even throughout the big cities.

When I arrived in La Paz, the first thing that struck me were the women lining the streets between the high rise buildings, each one selling her beautiful wares. Every turn you make reveals a new square and as you look out you can see the valley, scattered with square brick houses in uniform rows. Parades fill the streets with women twirling their skirts and men playing trombones. Everything here feels a little offbeat and everyone moves at their own pace.

The strangest experience I had in Bolivia was the San Pedro prison tour. Our guide walked with us around the prison walls, explaining that the prisoners have their families living with them inside and that they buy their own cell. The more money you have, the better your cell will be. There are no guards, justice is doled out by the criminals themselves. The prisoners run a cocaine operation – producing it, selling it to outsiders and apparently giving a cut to the prison. It was the craziest tour I’ve ever been on, that’s for sure.

Beyond the crazy though, are the beautiful landscapes. Copacabana and Lake Titicaca offer stunning mountain views at altitude – the most tranquil backdrops you can imagine. Take a trip through Uyuni and you’ll come to the world’s largest salt flats, which are an enormous white expanse that reflect like mirrors during the wet season. You’ll see flocks of pink flamingos, and beautifully colourful lagoons in shades of red, blue and green. The hidden marshlands and streams in the middle of the desert feel like something from Lord of the Rings – each new setting transports you somewhere new – somewhere magical and quite surreal.

From the Andean highlands to the Amazonian lowlands, Bolivia is so climatically diverse and incredibly interesting. Take the time to go and explore this beautiful country. Appreciate all of its charms and quirks and allow yourself to be amazed.

Sofia’s Top 5 Tips for Bolivia:

  • Get those layers on and venture to the salt flats of Salar de Uyuni. I would recommend doing one of the longer 3/4 day tours to see all the ‘National Geographic’ landscapes.
  • Go wild at one of the many parties in La Paz.
  • Rummage through the never ending lanes off La Paz’s flea market where you’ll find yourself many a bargain, I picked up an 80s festival swimsuit and ‘spice girls’ style bomber jacket, both under £1!
  • Spend an afternoon at the Mirador Cafe in Sucre. Enjoy the tranquil laid back vibes of the city, whilst indulging in the panoramic view and one or, go on, two bottles of great red wine!
  • Catch a boat across Lake Titicaca to the tranquil island of Isla Rosa. Watch the Cholita women herding goats across the mountains and take in the beautiful scenery of the mountains sat against the sparkling lake.

 


 

Thank you Sofia! Don’t forget to catch up with the rest of Sofia’s journey here.

Patchwork Couple: Kasia & Sam’s Festival Wedding Weekend

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

Kasia and Sam met at six form college and had loads of mutual friends. It took them a couple of years but eventually they kissed – at the Paradise Bar in Deptford – on a group night out. They’ve been together ever since. And after what may be the world’s longest engagement (14 years!) they finally tied the knot this summer at a big garden party, made possible with lots of help from their lovely friends. We asked Kasia all about their ‘Patchworked’ wedding weekend and familymoon.

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

How did you and Sam get engaged?

We moved to Barcelona when we were 24 for 18 months. We lived in a beautiful old building in the top floor apartment.  There was an old wrought iron lift which was very small.  I always said how much I loved the lift, because you could see each floor and the staircase that wrapped around it as you went down.  It was very old fashioned and beautiful.  One evening on our way out to a Christmas party, Sam grabbed a bottle of Champagne and we got in the lift.  As it started to go down Sam announced he had something in his pocket, which made me laugh.  I didn’t know what he was talking about. He pulled out a ring box and proposed.  I said yes, we kissed and then arrived on the ground floor.  It was very romantic. Unfortunately we didn’t seal the deal until 14 years later.

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

What kind of wedding did you decide to plan?

We planned an intimate ceremony with just our closest relatives at Chelsea Old Town Hall.  The following day we planned a big Garden Party in our family house in Essex.  It was a bit like a mini festival.  We had Bell Tents in the back field for our guests, a large marquee with flowers and hay bales and beautiful white table cloths and an amazing BBQ with a selection of salads.

Many of our friends and family helped to make our day special.  The party was held at Sam’s family’s house in Essex.  His Aunt Mary worked on making the garden look beautiful leading up to the day.  Sam was in charge of the music and food.  He asked individual friends if they would play and they all said yes. Sam created a DJ Rota and gave them each a list of tunes he wanted them to include in their sets.  It worked really well.

Our friend Philippa and her sister offered very early on to do the flowers.  They were amazing. She grew them from scratch created the most stunning displays.  I didn’t give a brief and was open to anything they wanted to do.  I just wanted them to be colourful and wild and they exceeded anything we could have asked or paid for.  They were so beautiful and special and made the place look incredible.  That was a very special gift from them.

Sam and our friends did the food.  He bought all the meat and fish from Billingsgate and Smithfield’s Market.  Then on the day our friends prepared the salads and we had a few friends do the BBQ.  That was one of the most important jobs and they were great, I think they had fun doing it.  At least they looked happy in the photographs!

I was in charge of the decorations and set up.  My best friends all helped to clean, decorate the Marquee with foliage, set the bar up, lay the tables, move the hay bales and all the other finishing touches.  That was a huge joint effort.  But it makes you realise that many hands make light(ish) work.

Finally we had asked our guests if they would like to bring cheese, or a bottle of booze or make a cake.  We were blown away with how many people did this.  We had a full table of cakes and later a full table of cheese.  It was incredible. We just had to make sure we had all the Prosecco, Wine and mixers.

Lastly our friends Laura and Rowan offered to take the photographs.  Rowan is an artist and Laura is a photographer.  Between them we have beautiful photographs capturing both days.  We were so fortunate to have so many good friends who just wanted to help make our day even more special.

It sounds like an incredible joint effort. Did you have a first dance? 

Our first dance was to Susan Cadogan, Congratulations.  It’s a beautiful Reggae song, which we love.  

What advice would you give to other couples on their wedding day?

Just go with the flow.  Don’t worry if certain details change or the timings of day move.  You have to remember no one else knows if something didn’t go quite right or the day is behind schedule. Guests just want to see you having fun and enjoying yourself and then they will.  Also remember to not be worried about asking your friends and family to help or contribute.  They will be happy to.

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fundpatchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

What made you choose Patchwork for your gift registry?

We chose Patchwork because we thought it was a beautiful and tasteful way of asking our friends and family to contribute towards our Spanish Honeymoon. There’s no way we could have afforded to go away as a family without their help.  We created a patchwork of things and places we wanted to experience on our honeymoon, like dinner and drinks in a Flamenco Bar for example or a day at a Waterpark with the children or even a night in the villa.  All these things cost different amounts so people could give as little or as much as they wanted.  We also used our patchwork to ask our friends to contribute their time on our wedding day – the wonderful thing about Patchwork is that you can also have ‘do’ and ‘make’ patches, so people could contribute their time by saying they would make a cake or man the BBQ.

We were amazed how many of our friends and family contributed on Patchwork in the end.  It was a wonderful feeling being on the plane knowing everyone had helped us get there.  We were so tired, but so happy when we set off for Spain – we honestly felt so lucky to have enough money to enjoy ourselves.

What was your favourite thing about using Patchwork?

It is completely bespoke and it looks beautiful.

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

Our trip was very specific to us – we wanted a few days just the two of us and then we wanted to share the rest of our holiday with our children and family.  It was Sam’s 40th birthday while we were away so it was lovely to share the occasion with his mum and sister.  It was a real family affair and our villa was incredible, so everyone was happy.

 


 

Thank you Sam & Kasia for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Patchwork Couple: Steph & Jon’s Alternative Registry

alternative wedding registry

‘Reformed lawyer’ Steph and musician Jon knew they didn’t want a traditional wedding, or a traditional wedding list for that matter. They asked their friends and family to contribute towards their upcoming move to Catalonia, where they’re living totally ‘off the grid’. Luckily, we managed to get hold of Steph for long enough to ask her all about their wedding day and what came after.

How did you get engaged?  

On top of a hill fort in the west coast of Scotland, overlooking a Loch (where Jon’s family used to live). It was a hard slog to the top but worth it for the views and the proposal. We love the west coast!

alternative wedding registry

What kind of wedding did you plan?  

It was somewhere between a garden party, a village fete, and a festival, I guess. We had the ceremony in a garden, followed by tea and cake and games on the lawn, then we had cabaret, a dance class and ceilidh. We didn’t want any of the formality you often get at weddings – just for people to be able to relax and enjoy each other’s company (and our favourite things!)

What was your first dance?

We had one planned but I got glass in my foot the morning of the wedding so we couldn’t do it. We did a first song instead: Jackson by Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash.

alternative wedding registry

What was your favourite part of the day?  

The ceremony. We’d spent a lot of time working on it with our vicar, and some dear friends had written pieces for it. The cabaret was ace too!

Why did you choose Patchwork for your alternative wedding registry?  

We were looking for something that would fit with our next steps – we didn’t need a lot of traditional stuff, but we didn’t want to just ask people for money. Patchwork was a really nicely presented way of asking for useful things! And we loved the fact that people didn’t have to spend money – they could pledge to visit or write to us.

We called our patchwork our Catalonian adventure – we have just moved to an off grid hill farm in Catalonia, so needed help getting off the ground.  We asked friends to chip in for everything, from solar panels and storm kettles to sheep!

alternative wedding registryalternative wedding registry

How did you feel when you set off for your new house in Spain knowing everyone had chipped in?  

Well, calling it a house is a bit ambitious… We live in a yurt, actually! It’s great knowing that  people are invested in the adventure with us, and feel they’ve helped us in a really direct way.  Also, they did some incredible pun work on our gift page.

What was the best bit about using Patchwork?  

Ooh, tricky. Having so much control over the final thing – not just what we were asking for, but how we made the page look. I spent hours playing with layout. It almost made the chainsaw and beekeeper outfits feel beautiful!

Our friends and family loved it, no one had heard of Patchwork before so they had a lot of fun exploring the site. But also they liked being asked to contribute in different ways.

alternative wedding registry

And are you happy you’ve made your move?    

100 percent. It’s a total change of pace and lifestyle, but we wake up every morning to spectacular landscapes and fall asleep under stunning skies, and we are learning so much every day.


 

Thank you Steph & Jon for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Wedding photography by Joshua Wyborn Photographic

Sofia’s Photo Diary: True Adventures in Peru

Sofia is travelling the world and has taken us along with her on her incredible trip. So far she’s showed us Rajasthan, South India, NepalMyanmar, the Philippines, Japan and Cuba. Now it’s over to Sofia to share her photos and tips from her latest destination – Peru.

From the tribes who live within the Amazon to the ancient Inca civilisations, Peru is steeped in history. It’s a traditional land and the people in it praise the pachamama (Mother Earth). You can definitely relax and admire the beauty of Mother Earth in this country, but you can also be challenged by it and revel in the new experiences you’re bound to have.

Peru photo diary Peru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diary

Throughout Peru there are tons of beautiful spots to hike and explore, like Colca Canyon – the second deepest canyon in South America, just off from Arequipa or Hauraz. Or of course, the most famous of all Peru’s incredible sights – Machu Picchu. I decided to opt for the jungle trek when I booked my trip, which was four days of pure adventure. We mountain biked through the towering mountains, sailing above the clouds. We whitewater-rafted through the valleys and zip-lined through the jungle. We walked the path of the Incas and learned how they built a city that would still be standing 500 years later.

From Cusco you can also discover the layered wonder of the colourful Rainbow Mountain. Or if you’re super brave, you can try your hand at cycling ‘Death Road’. Call me crazy but I wasn’t feeling quite that brave. Cusco itself has a clear Spanish influence, the cobbled streets of San Blas and the churches in San Francisco Square are distinctly colonial. It’s here you’ll find amazing flea markets with retro sports apparel for your inner 90s kid, and street food aplenty!

Peru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diaryPeru photo diary Peru photo diary

In fact ceviche may just be a reason to travel to Peru alone. Peru, and more specifically Lima, is a culinary feast. Earning itself multiple Michelin stars, the city has endless high quality restaurants for you to sample. However, head to the streets for lunch and you’ll be equally impressed.

For a change of scenery, try Huacachina – a natural oasis in the desert. Get out on the dune buggies and explore, or try sandboarding and go sliding head first down the steep slopes, it’s a quick adrenaline rush! By night you can climb the towering dunes and look down across the land. Marvel at the curving structures as the shadows fall across the dunes at sunset.

Peru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary

For even more jaw-dropping nature, make your way into the Amazon jungle from Iquitos, in the North of Peru. The town itself can’t be reached by cars, so you’ll find plenty of tricycles buzzing around. Around Belem market you can see witch potions, BBQ’d maggots on sticks, furs and animal teeth. You definitely have a feeling that you’re entering somewhere different, of different values and customs. Most restaurants will even offer an ayahuasca menu as this is one of the most popular places to try the traditional healing ceremonies.

Peru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary

I spent 4 days at a retreat, La Luna del Amazonas, learning the ways of the shaman and having a total out of body experience. You can jump in a boat for several hours, float down the river and stay in one of jungle cabins, listen to the orchestra of creatures as they sing the songs of the jungle. There are birds calling, frogs ribbiting and insects buzzing. The fireflies flicker as little fish leap in and out of the water. You’ll see sloths, monkeys and dolphins. If you want you can even hold a tarantula or catch some piranhas for lunch!

Peru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diaryPeru photo diary Peru photo diary

I spent 4 weeks in Peru, but only just scratched the surface. I’d love to see the surf and beaches in the north, do plenty more treks and explore many more small cultural treasures.

Sofia’s Top 5 Peru Tips:

  • Learn how to make ceviche. I did a lesson with in Lima, which I would very much recommend, Lima Gourmet.Whilst I didn’t find Colca Canyon the most rewarding trek, the town of Cabanaconde where you finish is really interesting to see. We were there over a festival weekend and watched women swirling in local dresses, whilst the men marched in the band with drums and trombones. Taking the time to see a village, slightly off the beaten track is well worthwhile to see how the Peruvians live outside of the modern cities.
  • Challenge yourself to the 2,500 steps to get to Machu Picchu. Be there to see the sunrise over the impressive ruins.
  • Try sandboarding in Huacachina, find yourself screaming as you fly through the dunes on the buggies!
  • If you are open to new experiences, head to an ayahuasca retreat in either the Amazon or Sacred Valley

Peru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary Peru photo diary

 


 

Thank you Sofia! Don’t forget to catch up with the rest of Sofia’s journey here. 

Page 1 of 19
1 2 3 19