Today we have the beautiful Swedish destination wedding of two actors, Jess and Brooks, who were lucky enough to have their wedding on a private island. Their big day looks like serious fun and I’m in love with the shots that Matilda Söderström captured of the many expressions of a bride and groom obviously mad about each other. Pretty much everyone told Jess that organising this island wedding for 100 guests was impossible, but in the end it worked out so well- and as the bride says, the incredible sun set alone was worth it!
Now a few words from the bride on the day, the difficulties, and the dancing!
My husband Brooks and I were married in Sweden on the 21st July this year surrounded by friends and family from all over Europe. Brooks and I met at drama school in London ten years ago and so our guest list was very international with guests traveling from Sweden, England, Scotland, Ireland, Norway and Poland. We had the most magical day and wanted to make sure it was unique and a fun-filled! We held the reception in Davidssons, one of our favourite restaurants right by the harbour. We knew we wanted amazing food but we also were looking for something fun and different so decided to treat all our guest to bowling after dinner which was very well received!
The difficulty with getting married abroad is that you can’t just pop into see your caterer or venue at any time. You have to plan and book everything even more in advance and put your trust into people more so that I would if I was in the UK. The week before the wedding was very stressful as there was so much that had to be finalised and we felt responsible for all the guests (sourcing their accommodation, making sure they got from the airport okay etc). The other side of this though, is that having the wedding abroad, it made the wedding really feel like a family affair. Everyone was in Sweden a few days before the wedding and I got to spend quality time with my friends and family before the big day.
Early on we decided to have the wedding on my family island. This island has been in my family for generations and it meant so much to us to have it there. I spent all my summers here as a child, and the location is breath taking. After dinner we had coaches ferry all guest to the Gryt archipelago. As the venue was ours as it were, we also had liberty to really transform the place. One of the huts was made into a bar, one was a coat room and another was made into a café with cushions, and warm blankets for people if they got too cold. We also had a huge bonfire which we all sat around signing songs and eating BBQ’d hot dogs late into the night! We made most of the decorations ourselves (with help from friends and family) such as metres and metres of bunting and wooded signs. Special mention must go to my sister Joanna Hjortberger who made 100 metres of bunting!! Friends and family all helped decorations but were also blessed to have a fantastic cake maker, florist and photographer. In the end the island looked amazing, just like a magical fairytale.
Having a party for 100 guests on the island was a logistical challenge to say the least. I had to fight off pretty much everyone who kept saying it would be impossible. I’m so pleased we had the wedding there, as the incredible sun set alone was worth it!! Given the choice, I would do it all exactly the same again. Dancing with my husband on the old pier in the sunset, surrounded by my friends and family is something that will live with me forever.
Thanks to Matilda Söderström and Maria Karlsson for sharing these wonderful photos. What a beautiful story and we wish Jess and Brooks all the very best in their life together. And now I can’t resist (they’re actors after all!) “And then, like a puff of smoke, they were gone…”
Photographer: Fotograf Matilda Söderström and Maria Karlsson | Bride’s dress: Sincerity | Dress and veil via Rafela Mode boutique | Bride’s shoes: Office | Groom and groomsmen attire: Moss Bross | Church: Gusum Kyrka | Reception: Dadisson’s | Florist: Froken Flora | Desserts: Aby Konditori | First dance: Your Song – Ellie Goulding | Hair: Anki Claesson from Afrodite Hair and Beauty, Valdemarsvik