Real Wedding: Vic & John’s handmade DIY wedding in Edale

“May you always remember the promises you have made, the ties that bind you and the hearts of all the people who bring such colour, texture and beauty into your lives.”

The first thing I remember about Vic and John’s outdoor DIY wedding is the view.

© Chris Seddon Photography
© Chris Seddon Photography

The bowl of the Edale valley lay before us, ready to hold everything about to take place on that little promontory in Barber Booth. Guests were gathered by a marquee in a neighbouring field and drinks were flowing. A short pilgrimage, across a stream and up a steep incline , promised to challenge those who had braved high-heels but it was so worth it when the  ceremony space revealed itself.

the congregation
© Chris Seddon Photography

Acts of Love

Vic and John are a very practical couple and wanted to include a number of visual rituals to accompany their vows and promises. We began by laying stones on the earth to mark their past and lit a candle in memory of treasured family members and friends who were no longer in life. Before speaking their vows Vic and John planted a young Oak tree right on the edge of the promontory; this was a couple unafraid to get their hands dirty!

bride and groom plant a tree
© Chris Seddon Photography

Words were the part that both Vic and John were slightly nervous about, though you wouldn’t have known it. Together they spoke heartfelt vows and promises that they had played a significant part in writing. We spent a lot of time during the drafting process, working together, to find just the right words and phrases to express their hopes and feelings for one another. This inevitably gave them confidence when the moment to speak them arrived.

To seal the intention behind their words, we finished with a Handfasting. Four cords made by groups of family and friends were used; each cord was hand-made or hand-picked and deeply personal and unique. One was a belt that had resonance for John,  another had been hand-knitted especially.  All were filled with the love, care and attention of those who had brought them and looked stunning when finally put to purpose; as you can see below!

blessing the handfasting
© Chris Seddon Photography


This outdoor ceremony was filled with love, laughter and a sense of community. Live music, group singing, joyful readings made the ceremony areal groupd effort. A fly-over, courtesy of a local buzzard, was the metaphorical icing on this wild wedding cake!

Every element of this DIY wedding day was hand-picked or hand-made by Vic, John and their loving and supportive family and friends. From hand painted signs guiding guests to and from the ceremony, to a tree by the filled with with embroidery hoops, each containing a hand-sewn heart-filled quote or lyric. The personal touches that made their ceremony so rich and memorable spilled over to the rest of the day.

It was such a pleasure to get to know this couple, to be their Celebrant, and to express their deep connection to one another and to the natural World. Theirs was truly a wild DIY wedding to remember, for all who attended!

© Chris Seddon Photography
© Chris Seddon Photography

Vic and John remind me how powerful, joyful and simple it is to take ownership of your wedding day and create something that truly feels like you. With the right people involved, and just the right amount of confidence and inspiration, you can create an experience that more than matches the wild landscape surrounding it.

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Chris Seddon Photography took all the amazing photos you see here!

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