This week has been full of excitement and anticipation. Not least as the Olympics has arrived in London town but that our new website is almost ready to go. That was until we hit a slight wordpress snag. We’re desperately trying to work out how NOT to manually move over 500 blog images from wordpress.com to wordpress.org as it doesn’t seem to want to do it automatically for us. If anyone has any idea there’s free wedding planning sessions in it!
The WD’s rethink their IT strategy
On the blog this week we’ve got caught up with Olympic Fever by having a special Going for Gold blog post which is an inspiration board of all things gold for a wedding. It’s such a great accent colour for anytime of year and you can use it as little or as much as you like to compliment any theme.
Our designer of the week was the brilliant Claire Pettibone whose dresses we have admired for ages. If you want to float like an Ethereal Queen through your wedding day then these are the gowns for you.
We just love a lotion or new potion at the Wedding Dolls and just some of our favourite products come from the range by Mitchell and Peach, which is produced right here in Kent. Our Fantastic Find of the week is their miniature set – just perfect for that honeymoon carry case.
Next up was all talk as we looked into Brides making a speech on their wedding day. Traditionally left to the guys, we now find more and more brides want to be part of the speech line up so they can thank their loved ones themselves or pay tribute to their gorgeous new hubbie. Would you? Find out more in Speechless Brides.
This week we also gave you the heads up on the next big thing for Bridesmaids coming to a wedding near you in 2013. Yes it’s bling’s best friend Sequins, and lots of them. See how you can get your Bridesmaids kitted out and bang up to date in next to no time.
Lastly our Saturday Shopping tip this week was for online store Pearl and Earl. It’s got loads of good little buys to help decorate your venue and is also a great place to buy those latex balloons we were banging on about last week. If you’re bored with the Olympics already you’ve just found something to do instead!
Happy Sunday Everyone
Hi All. On the blog today is the totally gorgeous wedding of Emma and Jon at Bradbourne House in East Malling, Kent.
Here Emma tells us how they found their wedding venue and the details of the day. Over to you Emma!
“Jon was playing cricket one year opposite Bradbourne House and loved it, then when we got engaged he said “I think there is a place you’ll love” and I did! It was a chance to have a manor house all to ourselves as we love history and it was our real life Downton Abbey! The main reception room is tiffany blue so we chose a very neutral colour scheme – it was very elegant and very English. We had 100 people during the day and another 50 came in the evening.
We had a Church Wedding Ceremony as I was brought up a Catholic and wanted to be married under god. The Catholic church service was made extra special by having the Trinity Boys Choir sing for us. Jon’s cousin used to conduct them so we knew we wanted them to be part of our day.
We had Juliette Harrison as our photographer and she was amazing. We wanted a supplier we got on with and work well together – it’s so important.
To take us to our reception we had replica classic cars – we couldn’t afford to break down on the motorway! We used Shirley Car Hire who were brilliant and we would highly recommend them.
Our guests travelled on a bus from the Red London Bus Company. We stocked it with Pimms and Beer to get the party started as soon as possible!
My wedding dress was by Enzoani. I loved his designs and all the silk he uses. I knew as soon as I saw the huge long train at the back that it was the dress for me. I was looking for a vintage dress that was fitted and not too over the top, but I didn’t feel ‘bride’ enough in some of them so I ended up going for a fuller dress than I expected.
My shoes were from the Rainbow Collection. I highly recommend them as they were so comfortable. I accessorised my dress with a beautiful pearl necklace my mum gave me as well as a surprise gift from Jon, a pair of antique drop pearl and diamond earrings. I completed my look with a long veil, by Richard Designs. It had tiny diamantes’ sewn into it so when I walked down the aisle I twinkled under the lights. I also had a vintage headband from Vintage Head Dresses.
Jon hired his top hat and tails from Moss Hire, he got a discount as his friend works in head office which was very handy! We were going to get the suits made but it was too expensive. We just made sure we checked in good time that the hire suits fitted well and weren’t worn in places. A good tip is to check everything over yourself (or get a bridesmaid to do it) because the boys will not check it all through!
I had three bridesmaids and they all wore high street dresses from Kaliko.
Jon is a graphic designer and therefore really creative. Jon designed our wedding brand and then made all our wedding invitations using a simple form of book binding and elegant wallpaper. They were fantastic but took absolutely forever! He designed a motif of a J & and E intertwined and that featured on all our stationery. We had a wax stamp made of our initials and stamped the back of every invitation we gave out – they looked stunning. We used the same look for the table plan and name settings. The table names were all named after Italian Painters as I love the renaissance period and we got engaged in Tuscany, Italy.
For the place cards I bought silver bables and used handmade paper from Cox & Cox, which I then wrote the guest names on. We had long tables for our reception and for the centre pieces I had candelabra, with the candles lit and lovely white flowers and greenery. In between was little silver gilt vases with three roses and scattered rose petals down the middle. It was amazing!
The overall look was so stunning that when Jon and I sat down at the top table and looked at what we’d created we were completely lost for words. I had tears in my eyes. All our hard work had paid off. We thought long and hard about our favours. My auntie died of cancer and my grandmother was diagnosed the same year as our wedding. We wanted to give a donation to Cancer Research rather than buy favours so we gave out pin badges, pink for the ladies & blue for the gentlemen. These pin badges were then put into black velvet pouches with a little tag Jon designed to say that we’d donated in honor of our wedding.
We had a mixture of roses and lillies as our wedding flowers as they are both so elegant and classic. Son Flowers did our church flowers which were absolutely beautiful. As I came down the aisle they were all I could smell. Our reception flowers were by Nicola from Florian Designs, she was such a lovely lady and the flowers were stunning.
We used Bradbourne House’s own designated caterers, Sanderson Catering. When guests arrived they were greeted with Champagne cocktails and lovely canapes whilst listening to a String Quartet.
For starters we had pan-roasted chicken and pancetta with seasonal salad leaves, finished with balsamic and olive oil. Then for main course was Scotch fillet of beef with roasted potatoes, seasonal veg, creamed courgettes and an enriched merlot jus. This was followed by a gorgeous dessert of sticky toffee pudding washed down with lots and lots of wine and champagne! Sanderson were really professional and excellent throughout. From the white glove service to the delicious food their style suited our theme perfectly.
Guests then had a piece of the four tier chocolate wedding cake which was designed by Purita Hyam Cakes.
To kick the evening off we did a choreographed dance to Nat King Cole’s, Love. We both love the track as it’s such a classic. In the evening we had DJ Rudy from Rock Box, at one point he was break dancing – top man! We partied until 12pm and then had a few drinks in our hotel bar when we got back, which was a lovely way to round off such a fantastic day.
Thanks to Emma and Jon for sharing their big day with us. And so do they have any final words of advice for our Bride and Groom’s to be?
“I would say just enjoy every minute of your wedding day. It’s sometimes it’s too easy to get sucked in by all the planning, the details and family politics to really remember why you are getting married. I wouldn’t change a thing about our wedding as it really all did go perfectly…..oh apart from the fact that we forgot to put a bottle opener on the bus for the beer!!!
One final piece of advice would be not to let suppliers give you the hard sell…make sure you try everything you want and pick companies you know you can work well with – it makes such a different to the day! “
Images by Juliette Harrison
Having comfortable underwear which still looks fantastic is the holy grail for most of us girls, but on your wedding day it’s more important than ever. Make sure you choose your underwear well in advance so you can take it to your dress fittings with you. This Belle basque set from Myla Lingerie currently has 50% off.
If you are splashing out and want to make the most of your wedding underwear how about a boudoir photography session? Another great gift for the groom on your wedding day – lucky boy!
In part two of our Planning a Vintage Wedding special we take a look at creating your own vintage look. We caught up with three industry experts who, just like us, love vintage hair and make-up. ALOT!
Christina Jessel, hair and make-up specialist, says “Vintage is very much requested in my work at the moment. Its fun, classic, glamorous and works with all face shapes and hair textures. Adding a beautiful sparkly hair decoration with jewels or an accessory with fine, small feathers really completes the vintage look.
Caroline from Powder and Glow loves recreating vintage make up. “From mastering a 1940’s starlet, a 1950’s siren pout or a 1960’s smokey eye, we can work with you to get the vintage look you want. We also offer personal vintage styling tutorials so you can learn to create the looks yourself”.
Liz Bower from Simply Beautiful Wedding Hair specialises in wedding hair. “It’s fantastic to create a lovely soft, vintage feel, incorportating Marcel waves and twists, finishing beautifully with the most gorgeous hair comb.”
Here’s some inspiration from the ladies!
If you missed Part 1 of our Vintage Special catch it here and see you next week for Part 3 when we talk vintage wedding shoes.
Have a great weekend x
1 – 5: Courtesy of Christina Jessel 6-9: Courtesy of Powder & Glow 10-14 : Courtesy of Simply Beautiful Wedding Hair
Welcome back to our guest beauty blogger, Emma O’Connor, who has been getting her skin wedding ready. Over to you Em!
I’m not quite sure what happened since I last blogged for the Wedding Dolls, but it seems to have given me the wedding bug. I now have the job of being a Bridesmaid three times this year. My first bridal mission is Maid of Honour to my sister in Ibiza this September.
I have learnt enough from the Wedding Dolls to know the first rule about being in the bridal party, “it’s not all about me”. Hmmm, however, my first thought was that I needed to sort out my skin and quickly. Thankfully my face had just about got over the relentless winter abuse but I needed to change my bad habits and fast if I was going to make it to Ibiza with peachy clear skin.
I headed out into town looking for an answer and got some great advice from Maureen at LoveBeautySkin who told me to ditch my trusty old friend, the face wipe immediately. I have been a big fan of wipes for years, using different brands in every price range. Each time I changed I felt a little like I was cheating on my boyfriend. But Maureen told me that “face wipes don’t really remove make-up or oil thoroughly enough – they just tend to move oil and dirt around the face, sometimes still leaving an oily residue”.
After her advice I rushed to the shops hunting a new face religion. After hours of fun in the beauty aisles I had completely transformed my view of ‘cleaning’ my face.
I have combination skin, so my t-zone can be oily. I needed a hard-working clay-based cleanser like Neutrogena 2-in-1 face wash and masque (£3.99 for 150ml). Fabulous! Two birds one stone. It has a lovely thick consistency and you only need a pea-sized amount to do the job.
It rinses off easily and leaves a tingly freshness. I’ve been using it as a face masque twice a week, leaving it to dry completely, then rinsing and finishing with a warm damp flannel around my jaw, brows and hair-line. It has left my face smooth and glowing.
To get rid of the dead skins cells once a week I have a new scrub, Gentle Exfoliator Brightening Toner from Clarins (£24, 125ml). It’s been working its magic and has made my skin appear brighter, as well as prevented the excess oil from re-appearing.
For moisturising I was introduced to a serum which I’ve never used before. I have the Serum Hydra Cellulaire Moisturising Concentrate from Guinot (£71.50 for 30ml), which works better for my skin type and can be used in the morning and night or when I feel it needs it.
It felt a bit weird using a serum to start with but once I got used to the consistency I love the light clear feeling it leaves on your skin instead of my normal moisturising cream.
Lets hope these fantastic new products and the change in my skin care routine will make my skin Ibiza ready well before the big day.
See you all soon
P.S Don’t tell anyone but I still keep emergency face wipes for night outs…. shifting make-up around my face at 4am is as much as any girl about town can manage.
It’s a new year and full of resolutions. So as we rocked up to our first meeting of 2012 there was only one thing on our minds. An addiction that should not be allowed to dominate our lives anymore – a trail of destruction left in its wake – we could no longer carry on as we were. We just had to do something, and now.
Yes, we’re nail biter’s. Always have been. Both of us have the worse nails you are ever likely to come across in the wedding industry. Chewed to pieces and quite frankly a disgrace. We’re desperate to stop.
And now an answer to our lifelong addiction could be just round the corner. We’ve tried tips and gels, stick ons and painted on potions, but now Joanne has discovered the nail holy grail, Gelish, and she’s loving it!
Rather than having tips and gel put on Gelish is different. Three layers of gel are painted on (just like nail varnish) to your nails which then allows them to breathe and grow underneath, and the Gelish is just thick enough to stop any gnawing. Jobs a winner.
You can choose any colour you like, including a natural french polish which will last up to three weeks without the colour chipping. After the three weeks the layers are taken of as easily as nail varnish (no need to soak for hours like acrylic nails) and then you repeat the quick and easy process of painting on the three layers again.
The Gelish System costs just £20 and depending on how quickly your nails grow you should expect a touch up every three weeks. Jo’s nails were done by the lovely Anna Burton, of mobile beauty company Finishing Touches in West Malling. For appointments give her a call on 07957 167892.
So by the end of the month, Joanne’s chewed nails should have grown to a respectable length and the nail addiction will be gone for good, leaving her just to worry about what colour to have next. Our meetings will never be the same again.
Welcome to the first post of our Wedding Doll guest blogger, Emma O’Connor, who lives and breathes all things beauty related. Emma is only happy when she’s rubbing shoulders with beauty bloggers and editors, plus a celebrity or two, so she can bring you reviews of the latest products to hit the shelves.
Over to you Em!
The Only Way is Orange…
When I was invited to the launch of TOWIE star, Lauren Goodger’s, fake tan at London’s Jewel Bar, I shamefully prepared myself for the worst. I was expecting lots of fake tan, hair extensions and false eyelashes… and this was just me.
I’m glad to say I was not disappointed; it was full on glam and packed with gorgeous beauty lovers, magazine editors, journalists and of course, Essex A-Listers. I was all set to learn the rules of this Essex beauty essential and if Lauren’s tan was anything to go by, her new product certainly promised to pack a punch!
For my part I was sampling the “Instant Wash Off Glow” so I grabbed my bottle and got down to business.
Being a die-hard fake tanner I’m not usually phased by the initial colour, but when I squirted some out of the bottle I shouted a very loud and very Essex “Shut up” to my tanning partner – the colour was REALLY dark which was slightly worrying, but all in the name of research I carried on.
When I started to apply the cream (using the all important circular motion) it soaked in really quickly – well under a record-breaking minute – and had a lovely fruity melon scent.
The colour completely toned down and almost immediately I was left with a really lovely tan and all streak free – and you can’t say fairer than that!
Overall I thought the product was great value for money (£11.95, 250ml) and would really recommend it for a beautiful glow on your wedding day. As it’s an instant tan there’s no worrying about how it will dry and you can touch up as you go.
One insider tip would be to use gloves or a mitt to apply – although it does wash off you don’t want to chance slightly orange palms!
All Lauren’s fake tan products (and lot’s more) can be ordered on her website.
Enjoy the tanning Wedding Dolls and see you soon for my next beauty review!