• Tara Deighton

May Day Mayhem for the Summer Bride

As I sit down to write this, the Old Town is being festooned with greenery and brightly coloured ribbons in anticipation for the annual Jack in the Green festival. Each year on the 1st of May, Hastonians observe the Pagan festival of parading the Jack through the old streets of this ancient town, winding their very merry way up onto the West Hill, where the Jack will be burnt on the fire and summer will be officially and sacredly ushered in.

Based on the pagan Beltane festival, there are so many ideas you can take for a Mayday wedding, especially if you're having your celebration in a meadow or woodland setting. Here is a little inspiration for your wedding, if you feel the spirit of the wild pagan in you!

Check out Henry Bournes book "Arcadia Britannica" which is full of ideas for May day style. I think it would be AMAZING to be invited to dress up as a wedding guest- it takes the agony of what to wear to a wedding out of the equation and gives you something really fun to look forward to. Also, in my experience, guests who participate in the creative fun seem to have a better time and are more invested in making your wedding that extra bit special. I would love to be invited to a themed wedding where I had to dress up! Hint, hint someone!?

You could use a fresh and simple tone for the florals, like this stunning flower crown in spring greens and fresh whites, which compliment the budding flora of the English countryside. This flower crown is by Bobo's Flowers in St Leonards, which was made for our May Day styled shoot and the introduction of a new wedding gown that I have designed (but more on that next time!)

How about trying out some traditional crafts? I love this corn dolly jewelry by Vivienne Westwood and the woven corn corset by Alexander McQueen, beautifully photographed by the incredible Tim Walker. Possibly not your cup of tea for walking down the aisle, but what about incorporating traditional corn crafts into the overall styling of the day, or making wedding favours, or using them in the floral arrangements...? If you're of the crafty persuasion, you could find a class and go along with your hens (or stags) and make something together for your special day.

I put together this collage from some of my Pinterest boards with ideas I thought were perfect for a May Day style wedding. You could do any or all of the following; festoon trees with streaming ribbons in complimentary colours to your blooms, hang lanterns from trees/ceilings with ribbons and streamers, have a flower strewn cake, roast meat over a bonfire or have a huge barbecue, dance around a maypole, give flower bombs as wedding favours, give guests corn dollies and get them to throw them into the fire at the end of the night, serve Jack in the Green themed cocktails, stick to a fresh green and white colour palette and, most importantly, dance the night away around the bonfire and under the stars with the one you love!

I hope you have found some inspiration here and whatever you're doing this May Day, I hope you have a wonderful day!

Tara x

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