Thursday, December 13, 2007

Outfits for a Winter Wedding

As the winter wedding continues, I am failing to convince my friends (who are now known as 'guests' in most conversations with the Boy) that they could be frugal and purchase their outfits for our wedding in the Christmas sales this year. Needless to say, the day is not even close to as important to them as it is to me and they find my 10 month pre-planning faintly ridiculous.

I care not a jot and herewith offer them advice.

The above page is taken from October Vogue's supplement (provided by Next - bleurgh but occassionally hmmmm in my humble opinion...) and offers some cute suggestions of non-black but wintery and warm looking outfits with coverups that go beyond the regulation pashmina.

For a winter wedding I would suggest the following considerations:

Layers of glam and warmth: sequins with cashmere, brocades with fur, satin and velvet in rich jewel colours

Chunky heels and warm tights will ensure that frost, rain or snow will be of little concern. Stilettos and straps are probably best left in the wardrobe for this one.

I got very excited about the new Hobbs shoppable website, particularly with the sale starting today. I've been disappointed to find, though, that they've not quite finished debugging it and clicking on flat shoes (oh the shame) inexplicably takes you to jewellery and miniskirts....
They have, though, put together an outfit finder and suggest this rather lovely affair for a winter wedding.

Once they sort out their searches and metadata this should be a veritable treasure trove of luxurious but suitably demure glam for a cold and frosty nuptial.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Bits and Bobs Catchup

As you may have seen over at Beholden, I've been rather busy recently climbing mountains and the whole wedding planning malarchy has rather gone out the window. However, I am now safely esconced back at sea level and normal activities will resume shortly.

Newsflash is that the photographer has been chosen: the wonderfully bubbly and enthusiastic Evelyne Wade was so excited, flexible, approachable and reasonably priced that we just couldn't resist. The other great bonus is that she has shot at our venue before so knows the layout and lighting conditions better than we do. This is a small selection of her work that I have taken from her website, however, the site doesn't do justice to the portrait and guest images that she is capable of taking.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Ranuncula Loving

From ArtFool's inspirational gallery, via The Bride's Cafe (more bouquets tomorrow). If we tone down the yellow vibe here and replace the berry strands with the purpley blue berries I like, we're getting somewhere. So crisp and full and fresh.

Yum Yum Yum.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Jennifer Behr Blooms

This makes me very happy. It has a density to it that doesn't feel overly false and the cream is rich and satisfying.

Just the sort of hair I was thinking, though more messy bun than fancy twisted shenanigans.

Will be investigating US stockists forthwith for my trip in the spring. Definitely want to see this in the flesh.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Janie Medley = Scrumptious

Loving the wreath work of Janie Medley and her new blog The Brides' Cafe. These wreaths have a really dense weight to them that makes me happy without them feeling solid and fake. I think the scale of them really works too: we're struggling to work out how very big the wreath at the end of our ginormous barn should be so as not to be lost above our 'altar'. These feel like they could work well, even so far as to be packed out with silk flowers and primped with a few fresh blooms on the day to prevent excessive wilting.

Yum Yum Janie! Keep up the good work!

Friday, November 09, 2007

Bouquet Spotting

Walking along the beautiful Shad Thames on my way to work this morning I spied something rather delicious. No it was not the Conran cakes nor the gift shop stocking Burts Bees.

It was the Shad Thames florist and their display of wares. They make the most gorgeous bouquets and are the only place that I splurge on flowers. £30 for exquisite bundles of the most extraordinary colour combinations and designs that trump Columbia Road cheapness in their style and display.

And what did I spy this morning? A bouquet of crisp navy and whites! Of course I didn't have my camera with me this morning (that would be too easy) and I'm off to the train station this evening for a weekend away so buying it didn't seem very sensible. Instead, I took notes and promised to return next week. Googling the notes has brought me this combination of colours and I'm delighted to say that it worked. It worked beautifully.

And suddenly I've got butterflies.

Above: Vibernum berries, white agapanthus, anenome and ranunculas.
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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Navy+Patent+Leather+£20=SMUG BRIDE

One job down, 4,218,838 jobs to go. The gorgeous loveliness above ticks every box I had in my head for the older girls:

  • comfortable heel height without stilleto or kitten heel (bleurgh)
  • round toe without scary points or harsh angles
  • ankle strap for comfort and ease of style
  • navy
  • not satin

Of course, at £20 a pair, these sort out the Sister and the Best Friend in one fell swoop.

The fact that they are now online at £25 a pair just ups the smug factor another iota. Hoorah for forward planning!

Monday, November 05, 2007

A good catch

Bouquets bemuse me... It seems a strange thing to want to carry around and is actually only in your hands for the walk down the aisle before it gets left with a bridesmaid and then (most likely) left on a table somewhere before you actively throw it away…

Difficult to deny the beauty of this one, taken from the site of designer wedding planner Rebecca Thuss.

And anyway, I’m such a fidget, it’s probably best to have something to carry rather than wringing my hands or hitching at my skirt with anticipation and nerves.

Maybe that’s all that they’re actually there for....

Hmmm. That's a thought for a Monday morning...

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Garden Arbours and Aisles

Some images to inspire your garden wedding. Loving the bamboo aisle, the arbour and the tealit path...

Sadly not exactly ideal for a frosty November afternoon, but a girl can dream!

I fear all these pictures were stored in my 'I Love' file long before I thought I'd share them with the world. Apologies for not being able to author them: do get in touch if you know where they are from!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

One Year Today

The Boy and I will be wed in 365 days and four hours. The weather today is pretty grey-skied but fresh clean air and not an ounce of mugginess. This week, if the sky has been clear, it has been crisp with a frosty chill to the air. If the sky has been overcast, the weather has been somewhat milder but not damp or oppressive.Despite rather anxious dreams involving bad photographers and chipped nail polish on my wedding day, I am absolutely overjoyed that I can now count the days to the start of my married life in months rather than years.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Wreaths of glory

Achingly beautiful wreath inspiration from the annals of US Brides Magazine...
Just the thing for adorning barn columns and doors at a winter-y wedding, don't you think?

Bridesmaids Dresses Head to Head: THE FINAL

So, what do you do when you have scoured the pattern books, scoured the shop racks, scoured the blogs, the websites and the magazines, tried on many samples 'just to see' with your bridesmaids and finally, achingly, very nearly, got it down to two contenders?

You have a head-to-head...

Vogue Patterns 8416 vs Vogue Patterns 8285


Pros: Interesting neckline, princess seams, full-ish skirt suitable for heavy silk dupion fabric

Cons: Would it look strange without the sleeves?


Pros: Gathering detail underbust and shoulder seams would flatter both chest sizes of my two bridemaids, slightly fuller skirt would create gravitas, organza insert could be used in place of ribbon to echo organza that *might* be in my dress and hide from rather gorgeous bustline of my fair sister

Cons: The rather gorgeous bustline of my fair sister could be in jeopardy with such a low v if the organza doesn't do its job properly..., and it risks looking like another v-neck empire line bridesmaid dress with little or nothing to commend it...

And if you're still not sure?

You send in the Boy armed with Photoshop to do his worst...

And the winner is...

Vogue 8416 in all its sleeveless navy silk dupion glory!!!

Phew, one more decision down, only 11249731204912 more to go...

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A Web Work in Progress

So all you get for now is a screen shot of our homepage...

Isn't the Boy clever?!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Tewin Bury Farm Hertfordshire

Our first barn, our first foray into the wedding service proper...

As you drive into the farm complex, you are greeted by a parking area to the right, a small bridge over the River Momra and an elaborate sign directing you variously to the Restaurant, Hotel Reception, four spaces available to hire and appropriate further parking for each of these venues. There is space on the signs for A4 sheets for the names of each party (eg 'Adam & Eve's Wedding') so there is no doubt for your guests. I have to admit to finding this rather off-putting, if informative, betraying the breadth of facilities offered by this highly competent and efficient venue, but slightly de-romanticising the occassion as you realise just how much of a succesful business has been achieved here.

The barn space, pictured above, is beautifully restored and perfectly self-contained. The barn itself seats 120 with seating for a further 30 split between the balcony and a side-area divided by open beams from the main space. The outside space (exclusively yours during the hire time) is well-manicured including a gorgeous little bridge over the main mill-wheel in the river and also a separate bar area that could act as the 'quiet zone' for those who may tire of the festivities later in the evening.

The on-site restaurant and the hotel rooms (from which the business developed) are both at a high standard and certainly would be welcoming and relaxing for guests.

We decided, however, that the proximity to other celebrations and the fact that our pushing 140 guests may be divided around the space, were not quite suited to our visions.

The search continued...

Images taken from our own site-visit. More details and further information available from the slick and helpful website.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Pearly Queen

I saw this post at BridalWave and couldn't help exploring further.

These invitations are described on Imagine Couture as:

The dupion silk pocket opens to reveal a striking invitation set on a silk pad, wrapped in organza and satin ribbon and finished with a beautiful brooch.

My mind then ran rampant. Could this not be achieved with a gorgeous button with the shank run on a length of organza ribbon? We are going to have our invitations on mountboard (I like the density!) so there would be no risk of bending or warping.

Button surfing has turned up:

Something tells me, though, that at a price of $4.95 per button, this may be a DIY step too far...

As cute as a button, MJ Trim, MJ Trim

Glitzonline, Glitzonline, Millliners Supply Company

Saturday, September 29, 2007

The venue search

Poised on the 'Publish' button for the review of the first of five venues that we visited in our search, I realised that I have not properly shared the hazy criteria with which we armed ourselves for our illuminating visits.

The guest list of large families and plentiful friends is currently topping out at 140 guests and that is without allowing for single friends to bring partners (unlikely to happen but an indication of our attempts at frugality).

We wanted a venue that would manage civil ceremony and reception for the full contingent. Something about guests missing the important bit of the day but being invited along for a few beers just strikes an odd chord with me.

While both of us have religious backgrounds, inasmuch as we both sang in choirs for a large chunk of our childhoods, neither of us are comfortable with a fully religous ceremony, but neither are we prepared to go without the awe and splendour of a full service of celebration. Music and words are important to both the Boy and myself, and we are determined that the service will not be over in a matter of moments but bring together the most important elements of our relationship and how we feel about one another.

So, in short, we have looked for:

  • Seating and feeding 140 with flexibility of menus and alcohol provision a bonus
  • Ample accomodation at a fair price within easy distance of the venue
  • Barn/countryside feel but within a reasonable distance of our new home in southern Hertfordshire

We set out believing that a barn was a barn was a barn.

How very wrong we were...

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Twinkle twinkle

The newly discovered fact of candles being allowed at some barns has opened a whole new stream of centrepiece visions...

This idea from the indomitable Martha Stewart Weddings suggests hot-glue-gunning glass vases with starched lace pieces and then filling said vases with pillar and tealight candles for a delicately patterned light-effect.
For the purposes of the Boy who often drops by round here, this post does not confirm or deny the presence of lace on my dress in trim or fabric form...

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Motifs and themes

Deep satisfaction throughout wedding planner central. Fabric arrives promptly from the US, beautiful and high quality cotton destined for waistcoats, baby bridesmaid dresses and even, possibly, fabric covers for jam jar favours if sufficient allows.

A close up of the print and colourway: the background shade is an interesting lovechild of beige and buttercream, possibly even verging on *whisper it* magnolia.*

The clever Boy then took sections from the print and has reproduced them, with the grand plan of having a rubber stamp made to order to be used throughout stationary and signage.

Do you have a preference?

* Tell anyone that I'm having a magnolia themed wedding and people may get hurt.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Bow Bow Baby

I love the idea of continuing the colour of the sashes in the bows of the flower pomanders. Aren't these girls just delightful? The fit of the two dresses on the image below, in particular, are really very good.
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Monday, September 10, 2007

Oh for another colourscheme

The combination of pastel pink and pistachio green conjures up some other region of 1950s nostalgia twinned with the freshness of Japanese cherry blossom.

I feel quite sad that pink will never be the colour of choice for a November wedding but I will console myself with these beautiful images of talented people and edible nirvanas...

The Cake Girls

Cherry Tree wedding cake

Maisie Fantaisie Martha Stewartt

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Hair today...

Looking for an unstructured updo suitable for my poker-straight shoulder-length hair and light fringe that I sport daily. Fringe-featured bridal updos are few and far between. However, current thoughts so far include...

All images from USBrides

Monday, September 03, 2007

Get me to the *barn* on time...

I have to have a watch on my wrist. There is absolutely no possibility that any day that I am without my watch will run smoothly. There is not a chance that I will not wear a watch on my wedding day.

However, the brown leather strap and large face of my beautiful Mappin & Webb wonder simply won't do. I am now on the lookout for a dainty silver-effect bracelet/bangle watch that will not cost the earth but will keep me to time and to schedule.

Oasis used to be my first port of call, but their website has let me down on this occassion. Again, I'm pretty sure that Accessorize stocks them in their branches, but none are listed online.

Marks and Spencers, at this early stage, has given me just the direction I am after. All of these beauties are under £30 and none of them would look out of place on a delicate wrist exchanging rings with the man she loves.