Natasha Buckney is a photographer who is relatively new to the wedding scene. She came on my radar last year when she started advertising in the magazine. She also exhibited at my last wedding fair and photographed my Christmas party. She immediately struck me as exactly the right sort of supplier for Margot’s Wedding. Her photography and branding has a real humble, heartfelt vibe. Her tagline within our directory says it all to be honest: Relaxed and heartfelt wedding photography for the quiet ones, the quirky ones and the couples who are very much in love. Well Natasha herself is very much in love… with Russell! And their Vegas elopement features in our current issue. I wanted to feature it on the blog too so I could share more of the beautiful photography by Anna Pumer and also Natasha’s full answers to my questions (I have to heavily edit the answers for the print magazine you see).
So, over to Natasha:
Q. What was the theme/style for your wedding?
A. As we chose to elope there was no specific theme or style although you could say that the day really reflected us and all the things we love. We wanted to be comfortable without fussing too much on what things looked like, to have an adventure and ultimately to say our vows to one another somewhere really beautiful. We both love to travel and so our elopement became part of this much bigger road trip to see some of the places we’ve always dreamed of. Ultimately, we wanted to get married and have fun doing it! We’re both massive fans of the film ‘The Big Lebowski’ and throughout our elopement planning we kept saying to each other ‘Fuck it dude, let’s get married’ a twist on the line ‘Fuck it dude, let’s go bowling’ from the film. That ended up becoming our mantra and reminded us to take a relaxed approach to the whole thing.
Q. What was most important to you when it came to tying the knot/celebrating your marriage?
A. We had initially planned a wedding weekend down in Cornwall with our closest friends and family but ended up talking much more about where to go for our honeymoon and worrying too much about whether people would enjoy themselves. I stressed myself out quite a bit trying to ensure that the weekend would run smoothly and that we would have lots going on for everyone. It ended up becoming more about who was sleeping where and what barbecue food to buy, and less about us being in love and getting married. I had always dreamed of running away and getting married but Russell was hesitant until half way through planning our ‘big’ wedding and then he jumped at the chance! Getting married was super important to both of us and we loved that we had the opportunity to strip away all the bullshit and do things on our own terms.
Q. How did you choose your venue and suppliers?
A. When we talked about eloping I joked about going to Vegas and it just stuck. Neither of us wanted anything tacky so when I found that you could get married on the dry lake bed outside the city we didn’t consider anything else. I spent some time researching wedding officiants as there are some terribly tacky ones in Vegas! (I love Elvis but didn’t want him marrying us!) We came across Angie at Peachy Keen Unions whilst looking at photographs of weddings on the dry lake bed. We watched a few videos to hear her speak and discovered that she conducted ceremonies with such grace and love that we knew she was the one for us. From day one Angie made us feel super special and on the day itself she was incredible, we loved her! We had already booked our photographer Anna Pumer for our Cornwall wedding – I had followed Anna for years (even before we were engaged) and didn’t consider another photographer for a second. Anna’s work is amazing – I love the way that she sees light and the way she captures people having a bloody brilliant time. I was nervous that she wouldn’t be able to come with us but she jumped at the chance, even suggesting that we make the trip longer and visit some other cool spots for photos! As far as the other suppliers were concerned I did a lot of research. I chose Cora at Ruby Finch salon to do my hair and make-up as I wanted to look natural (but better!) and she achieved that perfectly. Cora was such a lovely addition to the group when I was getting ready too, she was really sweet and fun. As soon as I met Rachel at Hexagram Creations and saw her amazing flower crowns I knew I needed one for our wedding day. Rachel created an incredible rose gold crown for me and it was my favourite part of my outfit.
Anna’s friend Leanne at Blooming Lovely Films came along to video our ceremony and she’s so talented! Leanne has the ability to make even the car park in a national park look super beautiful, and she made the whole day fun!
I picked up some pretty flowers from Whole Foods, wore customised converse and spent less than £100 on my dress! I also wore a fun pink bag from Puptart London and covered it in badges from Punkypins!
Q. Where did you get your ideas and inspiration?
A. I spent a lot of time looking at other weddings held on dry lake beds and deserts around the world and came to the conclusion that we definitely needed pops of colour to make us stand out from the background. I really like the colours we chose – flashes of pink, maroon and blue – they go so well with the desert.
Q. Tell us about your dress…
A. I couldn’t bear the idea of going dress shopping. I didn’t want to spend a lot on a wedding dress that I would only wear once. I fell in love with a beautiful white Brigitte Bardot inspired dress from La Redoute but unfortunately it sold out before I could get my hands on one! Luckily another bride had bought two for her wedding (in case of size changes!) and hadn’t ended up wearing the one that was in my size! I was so thrilled, purchased the dress from her for £80 and didn’t look at anything else. I wanted something feminine and lacy but I wanted to be comfortable so that I could move freely and not be too hot in the desert heat! I loved the dress so much!
Q. What was on the menu (food and drink)?
A. We drank champagne in the desert of course. Food wise – we had booked a table at an incredible vegan restaurant but spent too long playing around in the desert and didn’t make it back into the city in time before it closed (we went for brunch the following day instead!). We decided to walk along the strip and go and eat fries in In’N’Out Burger for our ‘reception’ instead. It was awesome.
Q. What was the quirkiest element of the day?
A. There were so many! The very fact that we eloped to the desert outside Vegas was pretty quirky! We had decided to get married on Star Wars day (May the 4th be with you!) as we’re such big fans of the films and it was awesome walking along the strip and seeing Darth Vader and Chewie! Chewie even tried to steal me from Russell, brilliant.
Q. What advice would you give other brides looking for a similar style of event?
A. If you have even one hesitation about having a big ‘wedding’ and you’ve considered eloping – DO IT! Oh my god, if you haven’t considered eloping – DO IT ANYWAY! We definitely missed our friends and families but we chose the right thing for us. We got married somewhere incredible and have the best memories ever. So many people say to me that their wedding went past in a blur and that they barely spent any time with their new husband/wife and barely got to eat or drink any of the amazing food and drink. Well, we spent the whole day with each other (and my parents!), drank all the champagne, ate the far too salty fries, danced together under the setting sun and I remember every second and wouldn’t change any of it.
Q. What was your favourite memory from the day?
A. ALL OF IT! Exchanging our vows was a magical moment. Russell and I said something similar about each of us being the other person’s home and I felt so truly in the moment, so in love with my almost husband and just full of happiness and joy. However, we did have a wedding road trip rather than just one day and there were so many amazing moments which are now truly cherished memories – having our sunrise engagement shoot in Yosemite National Park and having Tunnel View (a very popular tourist spot in the park) all to ourselves, being blinded by the beautiful golden sun as it rose behind the mountains. Driving between snow covered mountains and the smell of pine trees. The incredible sunset at Lake Tahoe. The bitter taste of the sand that went everywhere when we ran along the sand dunes in Death Valley and running into the wind at the Valley of Fire. The view from our incredible suite in Las Vegas. The taste of the fresh water at Zion National Park and the incredible views. Falling asleep while Russell drove us through an intense thunderstorm on the way to LA. Watching the golden sun go down from Santa Monica beach and feeling so in love with my husband and the future we were going to build together.
Q. What was your first dance to/what did you walk down to the aisle to?
A. We didn’t have an official ‘first dance’ but we ended our wedding day dancing around our suite on the 53rd floor of our hotel overlooking the strip and drinking champagne. That was pretty awesome! As I didn’t have a traditional aisle to walk down my mum created a playlist for us to listen to in the car on the drive out to the desert – the playlist featured The Cure, Queen, Stevie Wonder, Billy Idol, Robert Palmer and others.
Officiant: Peachy Keen Unions www.peachykeenunions.com
Photographer: Anna Pumer www.annapumerphotography.com
Hair and make-up: www.rubyfinchsalon.com
Flower crown: www.etsy.com/uk/shop/HexagramCreations