Author Archives: Kat

Taxidermy and Skull Wedding at Islington Metal Works: Sarah & Ben

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Sarah and Ben chose Islington Metal Works for their July 2013 wedding. The bride wore Valentino, the groom a snappy suit from Topman, and their whole day was just a massive representation of the two of them.

“We really wanted our wedding to just reflect our personalities and what we love!” wrote Sarah. “We both share a love of taxidermy, skulls, vintage furniture and weird curiosities so we wanted to bring that across but in a light pretty way softened with fairly lights and flowers. We would have loved more taxidermy but it was surprising how much it costs to hire it!”

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“We also love places that are a little run down and industrial and the Metal Works was the perfect venue for this. We didn’t want a traditional wedding so we had a small private family ceremony in our local registry office the day before and had our close friend Christian perform a short ceremony for us at the Metal Works. Friends read and our best friends daughter was the ring bearer. It was perfect and just what we wanted. Intimate with plenty of laughter.”

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Bridesmaid 101

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This may seem trivial and self-centred, but I’ve always wanted to be a bridesmaid. As a child I didn’t once dream about my own wedding day, but I coveted the pretty, flouncy dresses that bridesmaids got to wear and the beautiful bouquets they got the carry. I wanted to do that so badly. “One day”, I thought, “one day it will be my turn”.

But it never was.

I have never been a bridesmaid. I’ve never planned a hen do, held the bouquet for a friend while she said her vows, or had to make a speech. And I’m not going to lie, I was starting to feel a little left out.

So you can imagine my extreme elation when my best friend from University, Carly, asked me to be her one and only bridesmaid when she came to visit last week. In fact I was so excited that the very next morning I was on the phone to a local bridal boutique to see if we could get an appointment to start dress shopping! I am taking my role very seriously as you can see.

I am a massive research nerd, so the next thing I did was to Google “bridesmaid duties” and “things to remember when you’re a bridesmaid.” Sure I might work in the wedding industry, but I want to make sure I do this thing right!

However I was disappointed to discover that nearly all the bridesmaid advice style articles I found on my internet travels came with a heavy dose of snark. What to do if you hate your dress, how to deal with a feuding bridal party, just how much it’s going to cost you… ugh, how depressing. This is not what I wanted to read at all!

So as the antithesis for all those awful articles, here are the real things you need to know if someone has asked you to be a part of one of the most important days of their lives.

Realise that it’s not about you

Your main duty is to help the couple in the lead up to their wedding; it’s not just about wearing a fancy dress and looking pretty! There are lots of little things you can do to assist, so be proactive. Offer to be the one to make the appointments, run errands, stay up late addressing invitations, organise a craft party to make these 100 metres of bunting that she has her heart set on…

Making the process easier and less stressful for your girl is your main prerogative. She’ll have a million things to do throughout the planning so anything you can take off her list will be massively appreciated.

Start with the fun stuff

I don’t know if it’s just me, but I always want to do the fun stuff first! And by fun stuff I of course mean dress shopping! It was the first thing I did when I got engaged and so it was the first thing I suggested Carly and I tackle too.

When it comes to finding that dream dress, all girls are different. She might be a super-eager forward planning type, or a more reluctant, slightly clueless babe. The key to being an awesome bridesmaid is knowing what kind of help your girl needs from you.

I don’t think Carly will mind me saying that she was crapping it about the whole dress shopping thing. She’s gorgeous, but she was stressing about not liking any of them and looking totally ridiculous. Now, I knew as soon as she tried some on she’d a) realise that they’re not as terrifying as she thought and b) that she’d look beautiful in them all. So, my first plan of action was to get her into something big and white so she would realise just how fun this whole wedding planning thing can be.

And it worked! After our appointment last week she turned to me and said “Well that wasn’t too bad, I actually liked a couple of them. I can’t wait to do it again!” RESULT!

By starting with some tasks that you know the bride will enjoy, you’ll help to elevate the “holy-shit-I’ve-got-to-plan-a-whole-wedding” pressure. If you have a nervous bride on your hands, start with the fun stuff – the dresses, the cake, the food tasting! Who cares about doing things in the ‘right’ order? Start with whatever you think she’ll most enjoy and take it from there.

kat carly

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Thursday Treats: A Very English Week

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Bright and early Tuesday morning, Gala and Shauna arrived in the UK. Since then we’ve been keeping things relatively low key, spending most of our time here, drinking tea and watching Paris Hilton’s British Best Friend (don’t ask!) The real madness starts tomorrow though and doesn’t stop until the first week of August!

We teach the London Blogcademy class this weekend, followed by another during the week and then host our first ever mixer event on the 24th! I’m so excited about the latter and I’m currently running a contest to give away a pair of tickets. I’d love to see your face there. Come on, don’t be shy…

Last week I also finally took the plunge and bought myself a new camera. I’ve been using a Canon 500d with a 50mm lens for the past few years. It’s a great SLR but it’s just so cumbersome that I would never want to carry it with me. After hearing amazing things about the new Samsung NX3000 I knew I had to have one. It’s lightweight, easy to throw in my bag and comes with removable lenses. It also has some pretty nifty features like being able to transfer the images straight to my phone over it’s built in wifi – whoa magic! – and the ability to take selfies by winking (that’s a blogger’s dream right there!) Expect to see a lot more self-shot photos around these parts…

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This week has been really quiet online, hence the slightly shorter edition this week. I guess everyone’s been out enjoying the sunshine!

Weddings & Weddingy Things

Fruit packing shed wedding
Colourful Salvation Mountain elopement
♥ Easy bridesmaid gift for under $15
The V&A wedding dress exhibition looks amazing. I wish I had time to go!
♥ Stunning Ophelia themed shoot

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Lara Hotz

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Edwardian Wedding at Asylum Chapel: Laura & Matt

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Vintage weddings are getting more and more mainstream which is why I am so excited to share a genuinely unique one with you today. You certainly don’t see many Edwardian themed weddings dotted about all the wedding blogs! Laura and Matt were married at the Asylum Chapel in Peckham, South East London, a deconsecrated church that is now hired for shoots and events.

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“We didn’t want our wedding to be too formal or conform to any traditions that we didn’t feel comfortable with”, began Laura. “We also wanted an interesting venue with history, but not one that was religious. We didn’t have a big budget so many historic places were not an option. Even if our budget was larger, we still wouldn’t have wanted anything overly grand, we wanted something more us and where everyone could relax and be themselves.”

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Thrifty, Bohemian Wedding in Northern Ireland: Amanda & James

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Amanda and James were married in Derry, Northern Ireland. The day started with the bride getting ready at her parents’ house and a catholic ceremony, but that’s where the tradition ended! Their reception, at Thatched Cottage in Craft Village, was a true reflection of them as a couple. Casual, laid back and thrifty. They spent just £1500 in total!

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“Our wedding was bohemian, handmade and vintage inspired”, began the bride. “We didn’t have any bridesmaids or groomsmen (just two witnesses) and chose to keep thing as simple as possible. We wanted a low key wedding, something special and intimate to share with family and  friends… no fuss! We also wanted the wedding to reflect who we are and not get lured into the circus and stress that often surrounds weddings. We aimed to create an artistic, homemade, bohemian atmosphere.”

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Help! I’ve got Pre-Wedding Cold Feet

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Ive been with my fiancé for nearly 7 years and when we got engaged in October I was over the moon. Now we are planning the wedding and I keep having dreams about running away and going on adventures on my own. We’ve talked about it and he understands it doesn’t mean I don’t love him and I’ve spoken to a lot of people who’ve told me its very normal but I’m worried about it.” Lauren 

First off, your fiancé is right, being nervous before a massive, life changing event (like marriage!) is perfectly normal. In fact you’d be completely abnormal if you weren’t a little bit apprehensive about what the future might bring. But as someone who’s been married for six years, let me tell you something – nothing really changes and any subtle differences are TOTALLY for the better!

The safety and security you feel in your relationship when when you’re married is like nothing else. It’s difficult to explain it to someone who hasn’t yet taken the plunge, but just knowing that this person has chosen to be with you, and only you, for the rest of their life is a wonderful feeling. Fights don’t have the same devastating effect, and you can be yourself more. It’s unlikely that a little tiff or disagreement will end the relationship (which you might have always been worried about before) and although you drive each other crazy sometimes, it doesn’t matter because you love each other SO MUCH.

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