Guest blogger: Alfred Chow aka Maker_of_ Things shares his and Sue’s inspirational wedding day with us! From the rings to his wedding suit – all made with a creative recycled twist!
When Sue and I got married we knew we didn’t want a traditional umpteen-thousand-pound-debt-with-all-the-trimmings wedding.
For a start, our engagement rings were homemade from scrap and off cuts of wood! Sue’s ring was made of Yew with brass screws, from an old fuse box, in place of gems. Mine was also Yew with a plaited band of old alarm cable and wine bottle wire.
We knew that the rest of the wedding would be as much recycled, re-used and homemade as possible.
We looked at various options for wedding rings, including used aviation hose clips, but in the end we designed and made them too. In my workshop, I turned rings of scrap stainless steel on the lathe. These were then decorated with brazing brass by my good friend and bicycle frame builder, Dylan Thomas of PIM Cycles in York – a simple design of two bands on my ring and a single one on Sue’s.
We love that our rings are both priceless and worthless at the same time. Also they are representative of our new life together – if they get lost or broken, we can fix or remake them just as we adapt to whatever life brings us.
My outfit was never going to be the grey morning suit, even from a charity shop. I decided on a steampunk look and found as much of the outfit and accessories secondhand as I could.
The shirt was from the back of my wardrobe. The waistcoat was from a second hand boutique. The trousers are old biking leathers. The boots were theatre props dyed to match. The jacket was found in a bag of rubbish outside a neighbour’s house.
Yes, you read that right. We were going to put the bag into a bin but as it wasn’t tied up we looked in it and fished out a sodden leather jacket. Cleaned up, it was the right size and style!
Even the metal framed welding goggles I wore came from the scrap bin at the preservation railway where I volunteered. Only the hat was bought new and the goggles on the hat came from Ebay as an old collectable.
For our three tier wedding cake, comprising cake, cheese, and pork pie, I made a wooden cake stand using offcuts of plywood from my workshop, making the best of the bits I had. It is all assembled with sliding fit joints and packs flat and will now display the recycled crafts Sue makes.
We had a cake made by a friend, cider we made ourselves, and numerous gifts of services and home cooking for the buffet in lieu of presents. Even the paper cups we drank from were compostable, courtesy of our local independent coffee stall!
To find out more about Alfred and also Sue’s incredible makes – please follow them on Twitter! @Maker_of_Things and @SueArcher6