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
For all your wedding shopping needs on this Olympic Saturday take a look at Pearl and Earl. The online shop is packed full of party accessories and ideas for DIY weddings. They’ve got a great selection of decorations from patriotic red, white and blue if you fancy supporting Team GB or paper hangers and pom poms galore for a gorgeous vintage tea party.
Last week we featured big balloons as an idea for a cheap and effective way to decorate your venue, it was a big hit so you’ll be pleased to know they’re available at Pearl and Earl too.
Image from Pearl and Earl
Traditional this is not, but come on Brides it’s time to take a stand… how do you feel about making a speech on your wedding day?
Whilst most Brides don’t join the speech line up, your wedding is the only time you will have your closest friends and relatives in one room. Do you really want to miss the chance to speak to them all, tell them how much they mean to you and how much you would like to thank them?
@Helen May Banks
Nerves might be holding you back, but if you don’t give it a go it may just be one of those little wedding regrets. Just think, you’ve got no pressure to be funny or remember big thank you’s – it’s just you and your guests, and the opportunity to say how you feel on your big day.
Sophie French, who married husband Pete at the London Golf Club, was one such bride who says “I didn’t want to miss the chance to say a special thank you to my parents who had done so much for us as well as my friends, some of whom had travelled a long way to be there. I was a bit nervous but if you tell it from the heart, you don’t need to worry as your guests will be thrilled however you deliver it.”
If you need some extra help then there’s plenty of advice website’s out there with example speeches already done that you can adapt, and we can provide help and delivery training too.
So come on ladies will you be leaving it all to the groom? Let us know what you think?
There’s nothing like a bit of bling at a wedding and the latest trend from our American cousins has it just right. Sequin bridesmaid dresses seem to be everywhere across the pond and we’re sure it will be big here too in 2013.
Sequins always add a bit of glamour and give an amazing sparkle against the photographers flash. In soft colours sequin bridesmaid dresses look fantastic at a summer wedding and in warm dark colours they add hollywood glitz to any winter wedding.
1. Asos, £65
2. House of Fraser, £65 Now on Sale at £26!
3. John Lewis, £199
4. Very, £120
5. French Connection, £140.00
Sometimes you find a website that you’re no longer going to be able to live without. And Cox and Cox is it. If you are DIYing your wedding it’s the perfect place to find unique decorations and accessories. It’s one of our favourite places to start when we’re styling weddings (and our houses too!). You’re sure to find something you love in the first few clicks!
All images from Cox and Cox
I’m a big fan of balloons. They’ve been a bit out of favour in recent years having been more associated with kids parties and Nan’s 80th birthday than as a viable wedding decor option, but if you need convincing round to my way of thinking this picture will do it.
Balloons will be making a comeback big style to the wedding scene and it’s easy to see why. Large round latex balloons can be a relatively inexpensive and effective way to bring a fabulous burst of colour to the room and can make a dramatic setting. I think you’ll agree – not a whiff of a kid’s party in sight!
For more ideas see MarthaStewartWeddings.com or visit Signature Balloons for prices and delivery.
Today we can share with you Little Gems who create gorgeous wedding cakes as well as provide a vintage ice cream bike with a range of gorgeous homemade ice cream to delight any wedding guest – and us! We had the pleasure of working with Gemma at a wedding and so could see first hand how the guests loved picking their ice cream and sharing the flavours with each other.
Gemma says of her company “It’s a real family affair and we’ve honed our baking skills over many years all sprinkled with a spoonful of style and a dollop of love! Whether you’re going for a traditional fruit cake, a contemporary fusion of flavours, or ice cream and desserts, it’s imperative to us that not only do they have the wow factor but taste heavenly too.
We can create the perfect match to your theme, dream or colour scheme, and we work with you every step of the way to handcraft your perfect cake. Whether you are longing for a timeless piece of vintage charm, a contemporary twist or going all out for a touch of glamour, we can certainly do the job.”
All of Gemma’s cakes are made using the finest ingredients and they can offer a variety of flavours and fillings to suit your requirements. With Little Gems the sweet treats really are endless!
This time last year we were helping Louise and Warren at their lovely wedding in Malta. The colours of the wedding were just gorgeous and have sparked a whole new set of colour combinations for our weddings in Kent, so much so that we wanted to share them all again.
Louise and Warren wanted to use wedding planners to cut out all the travel expenses of going to Malta to check on arrangements, as well as the stress of trying to do it all themselves. We worked with the couple on plans this end whilst the Maltese planner was on location to organise local suppliers and double check arrangements.
Louise says “it was lovely to spend so much time with our friends and family and enjoy every minute of our wedding experience. The ladies did such a fantastic job of helping us organise our day and the whole thing was so relaxed and fun. I didn’t want to have to worry about all those little things, I just wanted to concentrate on making my guests experience as great as ours – and it definitely was!”
Happy Anniversary to Louise and Warren x
Brides Dress: Pronovias
Bridesmaids: Oriental Pearl (Bluewater Shopping Centre)
Suits: Austin Reed
Photography: Kay Young
Today we are really pleased to be sharing a fantastic vintage photoshoot at the very lovely Upnor Castle, Kent. The shoot was set up by Margate based photographer, Robert Marriott with the help of Maxine Gregory of Tea-licious and Sandra Andrews of Vintage Curves.
We just love the vintage dresses, the gorgeous red detailing and wow – that cake! Here are just some of our favourite shots but take a look at Robert’s blog for the full shoot. Enjoy!
Image Credits Robert Marriott – thanks Robert!
Photo Shoot Credits:
Stylist’s Stephanie Stanley, Lacey Biginton and Leanne MacPherson
Florists Mals Bespoke Bouquet, Flower Heaven and Helen Louise Jury.
Red Ruffle cake supplied by Francesca Pitcher, Cupcakes by Samantha Vanstone
Vehicles from Amandas Vintage Car Hire, Simply Stunning Cars and Retro Caravan Hire.
Mike and Keeley had a civil ceremony for 80 guests last year at Cooling Castle Barn, Rochester, Kent. The mix of vibrant colours and stunning backdrop make this wedding feel really warm and welcoming. Here Keeley talks us through their big day.
“I had been to weddings at Cooling Castle barn and although I really liked it I wanted to get married somewhere I hadn’t been to before. After looking at lots of other venues and having no luck, Mike put his foot down and booked for us to see Cooling! Even though the heavens opened the day we went to look around, it didn’t dampen its charm and we fell in love with it and everything it had to offer. This was back in November 2009 and the first date they had was 22 months away – we put a deposit down straightaway to avoid waiting any longer! The staff at Cooling Castle Barn were fantastic and able to help us whenever we had any questions regarding the day.
We had almost two years to plan but spent the first year not doing too much except finding the venue, saving money and getting ideas. The second year was when we started putting all the ideas together and buying things. I thought I would be the one who did all the planning but I was pleasantly surprised by how much Mike got involved, although he does say ‘she might ask you for your opinion but will always go with what she wants anyway’!
We found our wedding car when it was parked outside another church! The colour of the car was what first caught our eye first and we both instantly fell in love with it. It was a blue 1930’s Beauford and we had a Bentley Mulsanne S for our bridesmaids. Our drivers were father and son from Old and Blue, and they were thoroughly professional and so friendly. They really helped to keep me relaxed on the journey to the venue.
From the very beginning we said we wanted something a little bit different that was bright and fun. We had a bright pint and orange colour theme and our florist, Cherry Tree Events, helped us choose our flowers. It was on our second visit there that we noticed the vintage style card holders and birdcages – we knew we had to have them as part of our day. We had pink and orange gerberas with lime green blooms inside our birdcages which worked really well to give them a contemporary twist.
I had a contemporary wired bouquet containing mango cala lilies, hot pink and orange gerberas, hot pink and orange roses, palm, soft ruscus and caged lily grass. The bridesmaids had pink and orange bouquets, the ushers had a single hot pink rose and Mike wore a mango cala lily. Our flowergirl had a flower wand containing hot pink and orange gerberas.
My dress was by Alfred Angelo from Country Brides in Faversham. My Mum picked the dress in the shop but at first I wasn’t that keen on it. After trying on a few dresses I put it on and once I saw it in the mirror, I knew it was the one for me. After months of looking, it was such a relief to finally find the ONE! As I’m 6” tall I knew heels were going to be a no go. I didn’t like lots of the flat shoes available but thankfully I found a diamante style sandal by Pink that were perfect. I had earrings and a matching necklace from Goldsmiths and a Swarovski bracelet that was a beautiful wedding gift from Mike. My veil was also from Country Brides and my hair accessories and bag were my ‘something borrowed’ from my sister-in-law.
Mike wore a Navy Blue Edwardian suit from Perfection. The bridesmaid dresses were also Alfred Angelo dresses, the flowergirls dress was from Bhs and the two best men and ushers suits were also from Perfection.
Our stationery and table place names were from Wickedly Innocent and Mike had said from the very beginning that he wanted to name each table after Stereophonics songs as this is one of his favourite bands.
I remember being blown away when I first saw the barn set out with all the things we had chosen. I had been so worried that perhaps all the colours might not quite go together or might be a bit much, but it just looked amazing. So many people commented on how lovely it looked – it was so worth going for something bright and different. Keeping with the bright theme, we chose bright pink organza bags filled with our favourite white chocolate jazzie sweets. We got them from eBay and Mike’s mum very kindly filled all the bags herself.
We had the caterers at Cooling Castle Barn who were amazing. Everyone commented on how good the food was and there was so much of it! We found it really difficult to choose from such a wide choice that the venue offered so we went with things that we thought everyone would like.
For starters there was a choice of Prawn Cocktail or Marinated vine plum tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella. For the main course we chose Roast Beef or Bangers and Mash. The vegetarian option was Ravioli of chargrilled vegetables and basil pesto. For dessert, Lemon Meringue Pie or Vanilla Cheesecake with red fruit coulis.
We had a three tier cake made up of two fruit cakes and one sponge from Marks and Spencer. They were decorated by our very clever friend Kerry who handmade all the flowers from icing.
We had a DJ who came with our wedding package and we were a little worried that we did not get a say in who we could have. However we needn’t have worried as he was amazing and played everything we had asked for and so much more. As it was a mid-week wedding we finished at 11pm but we started the reception early so that we could have plenty of time to dance. Our first dance was At Last by Etta James as we thought it was a beautiful song with such meaningful lyrics. We both loved garage music when we were younger so we had a selection of garage tracks which had the dance floor over flowing all night!
The fabulous Fleur Challis was our wedding photographer. Fleur had photographed our friends wedding and they spoke really highly of her. Seeing how wonderful their photos were we contacted her. As soon as we got chatting to Fleur we knew she would be the perfect person to capture our day. She had fantastic ideas and was so on our wave length. We had a pre wedding shoot in Canterbury which was a great way for us to relax in front of the camera before the big day as neither of us are keen on having our photo taken. We are so pleased with our photos and they have captured the day perfectly”.
Thanks to Keeley and Mike for sharing their day with us. And so any last words for our wedding couples to be?
“Yes, talk to your friends about suppliers they used. We got lots of recommendations from friends which saves time doing lots of research and lastly enjoy every minute, it goes far too quickly!