Today’s wedding is the summer nuptials of Gary and Hollie, who were married at luxury hotel, Sundridge Park Manor in Bromley, Kent. The Grade I listed Manor is set in 6 acres of terraced gardens and has 23 en-suite rooms which have views of the gardens and golf course that surround it. Hollie and Gary first saw the venue on a TV programme and went to take a look and it’s no wonder they fell in love with it. It’s elegant charm was the perfect backdrop to Gary and Hollie’s Champagne and Ivory colour scheme. Here Hollie tells us how she began to plan their big day. Starting with the all important dress!
Hollie says “I felt like an absolute princess and I knew by my mum and friends reaction when I stepped out of the changing room that it was “the one”. It’s not every day you get to wear a princess dress! I accessorized it with High ivory sandals from Dune and stud earrings that were a gift from my Chief Bridesmaid. I also had a veil, hair slide and an ivory box clutch bag that my Chief Bridesmaid held on the day.
“We didn’t really need loads of decoration as the venue was absolutely beautiful – we let it speak for itself. Cinderella Dreams did our flowers and styling which was simple but really effective. I had a White Rose bouquet, with the three bridesmaids having smaller versions. The two flower girls had cute little wands. We also decorated the top table with Ivory Roses and “Mr & Mrs” wooden letters. The centerpieces were tall hurricane vases with candles and on the tables were disposable cameras and simple ivory name place cards. We had scratch cards in a wallet for the favours, which were colour co-ordinated and from eBay.
I got nearly all my ideas and inspiration from Google images! I had an idea of what I wanted and used the images alongside a few tweaks of my own. It was definitely less stress though having someone set up all the tables and arranging all the different style elements on the day – I would recommend it to every bride!
“Our photographer was James Grist. He had photographed our friends wedding and so we knew we wanted to have him.
For our wedding breakfast we had a hot buffet from the in house caterers, with a dessert table and cheese board for after. This was served with White and Red Wine on the tables but other drinks were available from the bar. Our wedding cake was a three square tier ivory cake with champagne ribbon around the bottom of each tier. The tiers looked like they were ‘floating’ and we had fresh white roses between each tier. A friend called Sian Howard made it. The three flavours were lemon, marble and chocolate. To kick off our evening entertainment my step dad, Barry Fox, sung our wedding song, Michael Buble’s Crazy Love. Our DJ Ben Phelps played the tunes, with Barry singing some more songs throughout the evening. It was a really fantastic party.”
Venue & Catering: Sundridge Park Manor
Brides Dress by: Allure Bridal from Orange Blossom in Blackfen
Flowers/Styling by: Cinderellas Dreams
Entertainment: Barry Fox (07984 465622)
Stationery: Made by the Bride from Pure Invitation
Groomsmen: Moss Bros
Wedding Photography and Images with thanks to James Grist Photography
Thanks to Hollie & Gary for sharing their day with us and massive congratulations.
Let’s face it weddings aren’t cheap. If you’re the Bride & Groom you’re expected to fork out to make your day perfect but now even attending a wedding can be an major exercise in budget control. From the present, to the new outfit, a possible overnight hotel stay and then attending the stag or hen do and you’re looking at a whopping £500 plus just to turn up. So as your guests have really gone to a lot of effort before they arrive try to avoid these five things that will strike fear into their little happy wedding hearts:
1. “I’m Hungry”
Think about the timing of your wedding and when food and drink will be available. Starting a wedding between 12noon and 2pm will mean guests have probably been rushing to make it there and not had much time to think about lunch. If you can provide a little snack or at the very least a drink on arrival or directly after the ceremony then do it. It doesn’t have to be alcohol or canapes! Use your imagination and check out our previous post for hints and tips.
2. “I can’t afford an Xbox”
Expensive wedding gifts always grind with guests. No-one likes a greedy pants and putting personal gifts like the latest games consule or GHD’s on a wedding list can look a bit off, as does a gift list with a minimum present price of over £100. Make sure you mix the list up a bit with gifts of varying prices or use a Honeymoon payment scheme so guests can donate what they want and help you to have fun as you start your married life.
3. “I think I’ve missed the last train”
If your wedding is out in the sticks or a long way from public transport then you will need to think about making sure your guests can have a good time and get home safely. Hiring a bus (red or otherwise) to take guests on mass back to a town centre or local hotel would be fantastic but if your budget doesn’t stretch that far at the very least make sure you book some cabs in advance. That way guests aren’t left without a ride home as sleeping in the Church generally isn’t an option.
4. “Urgh how do you spell C-o-n-g-r-a-t-s”
It never fails to raise a quiet chuckle when you pass around the “Guest Book” and see the looks you get. It ranges from a ‘kill me now I have literally nothing to say’ to ‘yes I’m taking it from you but I’m going to pass it on quickly when I think no-one is looking”. There’s nothing worse than having to write something heart felt and witty into a book once you’ve drunk half your body weight in wine. There’s loads more options out there now from Polaroid Camera Pictures hanging on a washing line, to finger print trees and Quiz books about the Bride and Groom to help your guests along a bit. Much more original and much more fun.
5. “I’ve think my feet have frozen off”
This is a pet hate, maybe because I should only really ever live in the Caribbean, but I hate being cold. To be MADE to get cold is even worse. If you’re having a Winter wedding make sure your venue won’t shove your guests outside in the driving rain or snow whilst rooms are being changed around. If you’re having your ceremony in a Church check with Father George that it’s alright to have the heating on so your guests feet don’t get frozen to the floor. English Summer weddings will also have the chilly evenings to contend with so how about having some wraps or blankets on hand. That way your guests can get nice and toasty and still feel the warm glow of your wedding long into the night.
Remember if you look after your guests first, everything else will fall into place and your suppliers will also be more than happy to bend over backwards to make sure your guests get the best service possible.
Featured Image: Frank Amodo
Now if you fancy a little road trip over the next few weeks and are thinking of having a tipi wedding we know just where you need to go.
Event in a Tent are having an open weekend at their Delamere Forest base, where you can see their stunning range of tipis available for wedding hire. There’s nothing like seeing the tipis in all their glory to give you an idea of what you can achieve for your wedding and speaking to the experts about whats involved in the hire and set up.
The event starts on Friday 22nd March and runs through to Sunday 24th. Check out Event in a Tent for opening times and more info.
This week myself and Joanne got a sneak preview of a gorgeous new magazine hitting the wedding world this weekend.
Doily Days is the new FREE vintage inspired wedding mag from the team, yes you guessed it, behind vintage wedding stylists, Doily Days. Helen Ruff is the lovely editor of the new 56 pager, which is jam packed full of wedding gorgeousness including DIY top tips from Helen herself, as well as Roses All Over and articles from our fellow wedding bloggers, Ooh Mrs James and Festival Brides. There’s also a handmade real wedding for inspiration, features on venues and catering and much more, plus if that wasn’t enough there’s an amazing competition from Mr & Mrs Unique.
Grab yourself a FREE copy at the ‘Something Old’ wedding fair at the Corn Exchange in Brighton this Sunday (3rd March 12-5pm) or look out for it at a wedding fair near you in Kent very soon.
Everyone loves food. Whether you’ve just had your breakfast and are already dreaming about lunch or are debating the benefits of a chicken roast over a home-made pizza for dinner, food will ultimately play a big part in your day. Therefore my friends it makes sense that your wedding day is no different. Catering plays an essential role that needs to be top notch if your wedding is going to be a success but fussy canapés and Fillet Steak don’t have to be the order of the day to impress your guests. Here’s our top six trends to give your wedding that happy big love full up feeling.
1. Seafood: Kent has the unique position of being surrounded by gorgeous seafood. Whether it’s Native Oysters and dipping sauce, Cockles, Winkles or Mussels, followed by fish and chips there’s an abundance of choices including catering vans and caterers who work with the best fish suppliers around.
2. It’s all Gone Street: Catering vans are popping up everywhere and many with a vintage twist that look very cool parked in a field alongside a festival wedding theme. From Crepes to ice cream vans and more besides there’s lots to choice to give your guests a sweet feast that Willy Wonka himself would be proud of.
Cripes It’s Crepes Vintage Catering Van
3. Go Global: As the world gets smaller the options just get bigger and now loads of couples go global for their catering choices. Asian catering in general is ever growing in popularity and it goes down a storm with all wedding guests. From chicken tikka to lamb jalfrezi there’s a wide variety of dishes to keep everyone happy and is a fabulous option for mass catering at it’s best.
4. Proud Pasta: Bowl food is big in corporate catering but it’s set to get even bigger this year as many couples choose not to do the whole sit down meal routine and prefer to mingle with guests. Bowl food allows you to give guests small portions of food and just keep it coming until you can’t eat no more. It’s great for serving foods such as pasta or risotto for weddings with an Italian flavour. Guests with a bit more room left can then grab a plate and fill up on the huge cheeseboard and dessert table to keep them ticking over until dancing commences.
Home Gurr’own Catering
5. Go Wild. Game catering is now becoming bigger and more well know as restaurant menus serve up more in the way of Game including rabbit, venison and pheasant as well as the more usual hog roast and Wild Boar sausages. It’s rustic Kent catering at it’s very best that will both surprise and delight your guests.
6. Burgers: Ignore unhelpful jokes about horsemeat and Ikea meatballs. Get your burgers from a local butcher (who will make them onsite and to order) so you can just concentrate on whether you give guests ketchup or home-made relish. Hand cut chips or wedges are a great accompaniment and there’s always the “bean” variety for any veggies. Kids love this option too!
Whatever catering option you choose make sure it’s the best that you can afford and don’t scrimp. They are your guests and it’s your job to feed them properly and make then happy – then you’ll find you are just as happy too!
I’m off to see what’s in the fridge….
Last week we were in search of the perfect smoky eye for Brides-to-be and Maidstone based make up artist, Nicola Peen, is here to give us a hand!
Nicola says “the key to successful wedding makeup is about finding the right look for you. If you don’t usually wear a lot of make-up then you won’t to go overboard on the big day, but may want to have a bit more for extra pizazz! For eye make-up that still has a natural look I choose
browns, corals, creams and
golds matched with light foundations
that aren’t too matt. I don’t
add too much shimmer either as this can give a
sweaty appearance in photographs and I stick to highlighting the brow bone and the tops of the cheek bone for a subtle yet fresh look.
“For brides that prefer a more dramatic look on their eyes I use greys rather than harsh black eye shadow. Opting for a light grey shadow on the lid and working in a darker grey eye shadow into the socket line gives you a really subtle smoky eye. My favourite eye shadow brands are MAC and Christian Dior for their highly pigmented colours in a wide range of textures and shades – fabulous for perfect blending.
“Eyeliner defines the eyes and can give a number of different effects depending on what sort of look you’re going for. Gel eyeliner in black on the top lid will give a more dramatic and defined look making the eyes appear bigger, while kohl pencil in black, grey or brown on the top lid will give a softer look.
“False lashes are now really popular and they do make the eyes look stunning. After applying mascara I add about six individual lashes dotted along the lash line or sometimes just three to the outer corner of the eye for a natural but very effective look”.
Nicola, who trained at the London College of Fashion, has over 12 years experience
of bridal make-up and is offering an exclusive discount to Wedding Dolls blog readers of 15% off when you book any package before the end of February 2013.
Thanks Nicola for all your fab advice – we’re off to try it out for ourselves!
All images courtesy of Wedding Make Up by Nicola
Capped sleeves in our opinion are making a welcome come back within wedding dress design. If like us you love a different neckline to choose from then the range from Justin Alexander will be perfect for you. The new style has been easily captured in one fab blog post from the designer which says, “capped sleeves add a touch of vintage glamour you can’t get with any other accessory. This very ladylike feature frames the face and bust perfectly to achieve a modest, chic, and very elegant bridal look”. We couldn’t agree more. Check out the full blog post here.
Justin Alexander Style 8658
- Style 8628
Kent suppliers include Bell’amore in Bexleyheath and Tantrums & Tiaras in Sittingbourne.