July 29, 2014
Las Vegas Neon Museum Wedding : Siobhan & Lee
Eloping to Las Vegas and having a Neon Museum Wedding wasn’t an easy decision to make for Siobhan & Lee.
Like many couples, they went through the time-honoured tradition of planning the big wedding. Lots of guests, lots of flowers and lots of food. They visited venues near their London home. They had menu tastings. They listened to lots of well-intentioned advice from family & friends.
They planned for months.
And after months, they were miserable.
One weekend, Siobhan & Lee looked at their wedding plan. The special day they were once so excited about had become a burden. They had a diary full to the brim with ideas, thoughts, tearsheets & scribbles. Yet their own wedding day barely looked familiar. It didn’t belong to them.
So they burned the book. They took a break from wedding planning and trusted the right idea would come to them when the time was right.
Shunning the big day everyone else said was perfect, Siobhan & Lee followed their hearts. Just the two of them, expressing their love for each other, in a location & setting true to themselves. Both lovers of Americana, eloping to Las Vegas was the first thing that came to mind. Not the roulette-wheel-drive-thru-chapel-elvis-minister Las Vegas. Something else entirely.
So I took flight with Siobhan & Lee for their two-evening elopement in alternative Las Vegas. No other guests. Just the three of us.
Staying at the stylish, low-key Vdara, I captured them getting ready together, exchanging gifts–including a wonderful handmade pin from bethmadethis— and skyping with family before taking the drive down Las Vegas Boulevard to their future.
On the first evening, we took a stroll through the colourful The Neon Museum for some intimate evening portraits amongst the retired neon signs of yestervegas. The following day I photographed S&L’s simple ceremony at dusk, next to the Pipe Dreams Sculpture at The Smith Centre.
One dinner at The Wicked Spoon and a Lionel Richie concert later, Siobhan & Lee headed off on their three-week California roadtrip, and I flew home, with the memories.
I’ve had countless emails asking me about this precious elopment. People connect with it’s spirit & the unconventional approach Siobhan & Lee took. It has been featured in a number of publications, notably POPSUGAR, Festival Brides, Whimsical Wonderland Weddings, Simply Elope and even Phase Eight’s own blog.
Siobhan & Lee stayed at the luxurious Vdara Hotel & Spa.
Did someone ask for a view? HELLO!
On the first day of their wedding, S&L relaxed in their suite…
…and connected with family & friends over Skype.
Siobhan wore Phase Eight’s Pandora wedding dress.
Lee opted for a slim fitting navy suit by Ted Baker. He left the Converse on the shelf, much to Siobhan’s relief.
Siobhan: “I chose champagne colour shoes from Karen Millen with a very high heel (I’m used to it!), which helped with the length of the dress as I’m quite short.”
Ironing with a Vegas view.
Siobhan’s Mum gives an approving smile to Lee’s bow-tie.
Lee: “We wanted to have a day that was just ours, without any fuss.”
Yes, believe it or not Lee took longer than Siobhan to get ready.
Neon Museum Wedding.
Siobhan was getting misty whilst Lee finished getting ready. “I never see him like this!” she said. “He’s usually in jeans & t-shirt, but he smartens up pretty well.”
Lee: “It was important that our day was unique to us, that the setting spoke to our characters, and our marriage was most important.”
Siobhan: “I am not really a jewellery person and terrible when it comes to accessorising, so naturally, I left all of this to the last minute! However, my lovely friends came to my rescue. I received a gorgeous single pearl necklace from my friend Fiona which was simple and understated, just what I wanted!”
Siobhan gave a Lee a specially made silver pin by Bethmadethis.
The custom pin was etched with the face of a bear and stamped with the date of their elopement.
My friends Nathan and Laura bought me a lovely silver, pearl and diamante hair slide.
The front of the Vdara provided a perfect backdrop for some portraits whilst waiting for the taxi.
We headed for the Neon Museum as the sun went down.
Neon Museum Wedding.
The incredible, incomparable Boneyard at the Neon Museum.
Siobhan & Lee booked the perfect time-slot. We had the Neon Museum to ourselves.
These two have an incredibly fun connection. Usually uncomfortable having their photo taken, they were perfect stars in front of the wedding lens.
Lee: “Have the courage to go your own way and not be swayed by the many voices who will chime in with what you should or shouldn’t be doing.”
“We started off with a traditional UK venue wedding with family & friends, but as we worked out our priorities and became more true to ourselves, we realised all we really wanted was the two of us, abroad. Everything fell into place after that.”
The light at dusk created these beautiful washed out colours from the old Vegas signs.
The Neon Museum feels like an oasis in the desert. Having the place to ourselves, at dusk, gave us the perfect opportunity to take our time with the portraits.
Neon Museum Wedding.
Siobhan & Lee took portraits of one another on their iPads
Shoulders are made to rest weary heads.
After the session ended at the Neon Museum, we headed downtown for some portraits in Old Vegas.
I loved Siobhan’s cheeky look back as we walked near Fremont Street.
The following evening we headed to The Smith Center and the Pipe Dreams sculpture. We met the officiants from the Las Vegas Wedding Wagon, who marry couples anywhere of their choosing in Vegas.
The incredible colours of Pipe Dream. Like a Mario game gone wild.
Each pipe represents a single note in Aaron Copland’s composition, “Fanfare for the Common Man”, 1942.
Siobhan got a little misty when Lee slipped the ring on her finger.
A slither of sunlight shot through the pipes as they said “I do.”
After the ceremony we made our way to an old disused railway line nearby.
S&L donned their shades for a few portraits. This is Vegas after all!
Just after the sun had set. We were losing the light. It was beautiful.
Lee: “We always loved the idea of eloping and Las Vegas was an obvious choice! Nevertheless, we didn’t want our wedding to reek of Vegas cheese, so we already knew there were be no singing Elvis’ or Casino photographs.”
“It was important that it was unique to us, that the setting spoke to our characters, and our marriage was most important.”
Neon Museum Wedding
After the sun set, the sky was a beautiful orange colour.
A perfect finish to a beautiful elopement.
Pre Ceremony Venue: The Neon Boneyard
Ceremony Venue: The Smith Centre outside sculpture
Brides Dress: Phase Eight
Bride’s Shoes: Karen Millen
Groom: Ted Baker Stawai Waistcoat, Trousers, Shirt, Bow-Tie and Socks
Groom’s Handmade Pin & Wedding Ring: BethMadeThis
Groom’s Shoes: Bertie
Photographer: Nigel Edgecombe
Neon Museum Wedding