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Back at the beginning of the year we styled a shoot at The Swan in West Malling to showcase how getting married in a pub or restaurant doesn’t mean forsaking any glamour on your wedding day. Choosing your favourite local pub might not seem like the obviously choice but The Swan itself is a fantastic venue and can cater easily for different events, whether it’s a small gathering in one of their private rooms to large events in their peak-season marquee.  We brought together a fantastic team of suppliers for the shoot including the brilliant photographer, Rebecca Douglas and set about using the Swan’s brand itself to inspire the shoot. Using a simple black and white theme we used feathers and touches of pink and purple to soften the look and make the most of the Swan’s elegant backdrop.

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Thanks to all the brilliant suppliers:

Brides Hair  by Annabel The Crop Shop West Malling

Brides Make up: The Beauty Aisle

Dresses: Isabella Grace Bridal Boutique

Stationery: Pretty Wild

Flowers & Props: Florist in the Forest

Cakes & Sweets: Little Gems.

And a special thanks to our four models Jessica, Ria, Sarah and Jodie.

If you’re getting married over the summer and have DIY elements in your big day now is the time to start planning them. Whatever your level of creative skills you can’t go wrong with some basic edible favours and here our DIY expert Kate from the Bake and Crafthouse shares three simple ideas with you. Over to you Kate!

1: Shortbread or Ginger Biscuits

Shortbread is so simple to make, tastes delicious and is not at all expensive. You could cut shapes to match your theme, hearts, flowers for a spring wedding or bunnies at Easter! The recipe is easily multiplied up to make whatever quantity you need as it is just equal parts of butter and plain flour to half the quantity of sugar and rice flour. You can add chocolate chips or lemon zest to the basic recipe or drizzle with chocolate after they have cooled.

A mix using 50 grams of butter will give you about 10 biscuits so if you need 100 favours then you would need 500 grams (2 packets) of butter.

Ingredients:

50 grams unsalted butter
50 grams plain flour
25 grams caster sugar
25 grams rice flour
Pinch of salt

 

Ginger Biscuits Ginger Biscuits 2 Shortbread

Method:

  1. Weigh all the ingredients together in one bowl.
  2. Rub together using your fingertips until evenly combined and resembling the top of an apple crumble.
  3. Continue to mix, rubbing the ingredients together an eventually it will form a ball of dough.
  4. The dough is quite crumbly and delicate but you should be able to gently roll it out to about ½ cm thicknees and cut your shapes.
  5. Place on a baking tray greased and lined and bake for 8-10 minutes at 180 degrees Celcius until light golden.
  6. Cool on the trays and they can easily break while still warm.
  7. Store in an airtight container until needed.

If you make a firmer biscuit dough (usually with egg in the mixture) then you can cut out more complicated shapes or print lettering into the top of the biscuits that will still be visible once they are baked.

2. Homemade Fudge

Fudge Favours

Fudge is one of everyone’s favourite sweets. It also keeps really well so can be made well in advance of the big day and packaged up ready to go. It takes a little patience to make and you will require a baking thermometer but it is fun and easy to make in large quantities.

The recipe below will make a large tray full (25X25cm).

Ingredients

1/2pt water
8oz butter
3lb granulated sugar
2 tbs golden syrup
1 can condensed milk

Method

1. Heat the water in a large saucepan and melt the butter into it.

2. Add the sugar and syrup and bring to the boil stirring constantly.

3. Once boiling, stir in condensed milk and carry on simmering until you reach ‘soft ball’ temperature on the thermometer.

4. Remove from the heat & beat vigorously with an electric mixer for about 10 minutes. It will begin to cool and thicken.

5. Pour into a greased and lined tray & leave to set in the fridge.

Cut into squares and package up as favours or cut heart shaped using a cookie cutter and serve with teas and coffees.

3. Sugared Almonds or Sweets

If you really can’t make your own then you can cheat by giving the most traditional edible wedding favour of sugared almonds. Packaged up in handmade cute favour bags (see my previous blog on how to make them here) to add a really personal touch. Traditionally, five almonds are given to represent fertility, longevity, wealth, health and happiness. The bitterness of the almond and the sweetness of the coated candy are a metaphor for the bitter sweetness of a marriage. If you don’t want to use almonds then buy retro sweets, heart shaped choccies or your own favourite confectionery!

Sugared Almonds

Happy DIYing!

Emma & Kate x

It’s all going to be a bit quiet on the blog this weekend as we’re having lots of fun at the Wedding Fair, Bluewater. We’re here on our stand helping couples with their wedding worries and lots more besides.

Here’s a little peek at our stand chalkboard wall designed by the fantastic Suzanne of Pretty Wild Wedding Stationery. Pretty special and very gorgeous huh!

CHALKBOARD BACKDROP

If planning your wedding is getting a tad stressful and you feel like you need a little help then you’re in the right place. Here at The Wedding Dolls we’re like an extra pair of hands that come with a big dose of experience to make your wedding journey so much easier.  From finding the best suppliers to guidance on styling and inspirational ideas, we’ll work together to create a wedding that’s totally unique and all about you.

Our popular packages include “Dolly Drama but Calmer” for help in the final stages and all those last minute preparations, “Dolly-on-the-day” so you can relax and enjoy your big day whilst we make sure everything runs smoothly and our “Dolly Hours” which allows you to use our expertise as much or as little as you need, just when you need it most.

Take a look at our portfolio page to see some of our work and watch out over the next few weeks when we’ll be blogging about some of our summer weddings and giving you all lots more advice and inspiration.

In the meantime we hope to see some of you at Bluewater and have a great weekend!

Emma x