Spring may be on it’s way (apparently!) but I’m still lusting over the prettiness of snowy winter weddings…although would you believe, there was actually some snow in parts of the UK this weekend!? Ridiculous.
There was quite a bit of snow-induced drama surrounding Peri & Ryan’s wedding. The ceremony was supposed to start at 3pm, but due to the weather the bride didn’t arrive until 5pm. Also, a lot of guests couldn’t make the day for the same reason and after the ceremony they couldn’t physically get from the church to their reception because of the snow dump and road closures. However a lovely local pub opened their doors to the couple and provided an impromptu reception to remember! I have to say, from these gorgeous shots by Shell de Mar I’d like to think they made the best of it (and I personally LOVE the pub venue – what great ‘art’ on the walls!)
“I can’t really say I am really a quirky person because I’m not but I have always liked to be a bit different in the way I dress,” explained the bride. “Nothing to crazy but just not like most of my friends, I don’t do brands and If I like something I will wear it! I love all things vintage and always have done! When we were planning I had originally wanted a vintage bunting, candy floss, ice cream type wedding in May but Ryan bless him couldn’t get his head around it so when he said how about a winter I thought it sounded lovely. However I still really wanted all the polka dot and vintage feel to it, so instead of doing the traditional long dress and winter colours we went for red and white colours.”
“Our centrepieces were red and white xmas baubles with led lights going through them with polka dot doilies on the tables and silver baubles as place name holders. Sadly no one got to see any of that due to the snow but it look stunning and transformed the room. Ryan’s Mother had made a 3 tier polka dot wedding cake that no one saw either, but we did enjoy it after the wedding! We had chosen Delilah the Beetle to transport us because we own a 1970’s green 1300 Beetle ourselves, but is at the moment being lovingly restored by Ryan so we knew that we had to have one as our wedding car. However again it don’t turn out like (in the end we were transported in a Land Rover! The good news is that we get to use him again for our Summer blessing! Similarly the lovely vicar and the church where we were married will also perform a blessing for us later this year…so in the end I’ll get to have the summer bunting, candy floss, village hall wedding I wanted in the first place!”
My inspiration for this shoot came from the fact that I had seen a lot of big brands in The States using fashion bloggers to model for and promote their new lines. I loved the idea and thought it could really work for the UK wedding market. After all, wedding blogs are the new wedding magazines right?! I approached Rachel at Wimbledon-based Luella’s Boudoir if she’d be up for letting us run wild in her shop and thankfully she loved the idea!
“OMG Huge congratulations!” I squealed, remembering how she’d once told me that winning a photography award was on her list of things she wanted to achieve in her career. “I know” she replied, “and the best thing? I’ve won my DREAM kit from Hasselblad who sponsored the awards…and we can use it for our shoot!” (and they even offered a wind machine…Lisa didn’t have to ask me twice whether I wanted to use it for my shot!)
For those non-photography geeks out there, getting lent a Hasselblad is kind of a big deal. Not only is this a camera worth about £30,ooo (and that’s not including the lights, wind machine and Mac that they also let us borrow!) but it pretty much blows any other DSLR out of the water in the quality of image!
Lisa explained all the techy goodness to me, “In layman’s terms, Hasselblad is a medium format camera and its all about the increase in image quality due to its massive sensor. The files are much bigger than 35mm DSLR and there are a lot more pixels. This is a camera for high end fashion and advertising work, the detail is phenomenal even when you crop in a lot. You get a lot more in the shadows and highlights and if you need to do any image recovery (if you’ve shot too light or dark) there is a whole lot more there to work with. The latest camera, which is what they gave us has a fancy focus system called True Focus which allows you to lock focus on any part of the image then recompose your shot. Once you get the hang of it, it is pretty useful especially when shooting at wide apertures which I do most of the time.”
“You can also shoot straight to computer into their dedicated processing software, which is what we did. This is very useful as you see exactly what is going on and can even control everything from the screen. So if you wanted to, you can shoot from a directors chair with a flunky doing the camera work! It has an eye-level viewfinder and can be held pretty much in the same way as a 35mm DSLR so I found it surprisingly easy to handle.”
Everything seemed to be falling nicely into place. Now all I needed was willing models.
It was important to me to pick bloggers who really stood out – bloggers with a strong sense of identity, both in themselves and their blog themes and ideas. Then I thought that having each of them styled to match the genre of their blogs would work really well. Not only then would the images be authentic, but we could use them to show some different bridal style ideas.
You absolutely MUST head over to all these girl’s blogs to see their full set of images and to find out exactly what they are all wearing…(you can get a sneak peek in the behind the scenes video below, but be assured, you will want to go check out all of their images. These girls are SMOKIN’) Click the links below to see their full sets…
But wait! There appears to be a certain pink haired blogger missing from this list! Well, as you all know I am always well up for a bit of posing. Oh I do love a good photo shoot. For this shoot I (obviously) still wanted to share some alternative/Rock n Roll Bridal styles… but I had to do something different.
First up I decided to add some more colours to my hair – I have been lusting over rainbow hair for months now and I was so excited when my hairdresser, Elbie Van Eeden said she’d be over the moon to do it for me! We dyed bits of my own hair (my base colour is Baby Pink by Stargazer and the highlights are Crazy Colour – Peacock Blue, Violette and Cyclamen) as well as adding clip in extensions dyed with the same colours.
Pretty awesome huh?!
In a similar way, we wanted me to wear something different to anything you’d seen me in before. I have to admit, it took a little bit of persuasion from stylist Kate Barbour that I looked OK in a slinky number but after looking at these images, I might have to admit that she was right! The dress is by Caroline Atelier and is called Emmy (available through Luella’s Boudoir) and I wore it with a Camelia Organza Flower by Victoria Fergusson.
For the group shot I wore an original blush vintage dress, created by Marilyn Monroe’s favourite designer, a gold shooting star band by Jane Taylor Millinery and shoes by Emmy (full list of what everyone is wearing below the gallery.)
But wait…there’s more! I also asked my friend Richard of FX Films to do the honours and film some behind the scenes action for us. I think you’ll agree the result is amazing! This man is a video genius (and I guarantee you will be humming this song all day now)
At the end of the day, we got together for one final group shot. Being a blogger and working from home alone, can sometimes be a very lonely career path. However having these girls on the end of the phone/hanging about on Twitter/eager to respond to an ‘omg I need your advice’ email, makes being a wedding blogger the absolute best job in the world.
I love these girls for their individuality, for their spark and for their passion for their jobs.
I love these girls for the support they give me and their genuine attitudes. These are the girls that make the UK wedding blogging industry great…and they’re all pretty foxy too!!
Jennie & Mark’s country casual wedding took place at St. Andrew’s Church, Prestwold and Quorn Village Hall in Leicestershire in January. Jennie found her perfect dress at a boutique that was closing down so she got it for a great price.
The couple gave their guests the loose dress code of ‘country casual’ for the men and ‘tea dresses’ for the ladies. I’ve heard both sides of the story when it comes to asking guests to dress to fit a theme, but I do think the overall result is quite a beautiful one!
The majority of the reception décor was a DIY effort. Jennie had spent the week before decorating with birdcages, wild flowers, chinese lanterns, paper chains, handmade cushions and vintage knick-knacks which she’d collected herself (Jennie is now hiring out her beautiful collection to other brides, if you are interested in hiring any of the items for your own wedding, be sure to drop Jennie an email to firstname.lastname@example.org)
The day was a windy one (it was January after all!) so guests were treated to a warming hot chocolate on arrival at the hall. The couple served a hog roast in lieu of a traditional wedding breakfast and instead of dessert, everyone was asked to bake a cake to share! They even had a ‘Judge the Cake’ competition to finish the meal off! After the speeches and cake judging there was an enormous game of ‘Pass the Parcel’ among the 80 guests before the evenings entertainment kicked off with Leicester based Rock n Roll group ‘Daddy Longlegs’.
Jazelyn & Darren’s modern vintage wedding took place in London in November. Their inspiration came from the fact that they are a young city couple, who somehow fell in love in London through chance. “He’s originally from Nottingham, England and I’m from the other side of the pond in Seattle, WA USA,” explained Jazelyn. “Our invitations had a London skyline and the top of it read: “Northern Lad and West Coast Lady”. Darren bought my engagement ring from Bentley and Skinner. And it’s a beautiful old-cut platinum solitaire from the 1920’s. Very vintage and unique. So that really was the start. We wanted a wedding that was very “us”. We planned it ourselves, down to every detail. Even the guest book… We wrote down personal questions on index cards and had friends answer them (ex: where do you see us in 10 years? what’s your favorite memory of us?) We wanted a mix of vintage and modern, mix of British and American, because that is us!”
The wedding day started at Chelsea Old Town Hall to sign their legal papers, they then moved to their religious ceremony at our Kingdom Hall off of Westbourne Grove. The reception was held at The Commander Porterhouse and Oyster Bar.
“I had two dresses,” continued the bride. “My first dress, a short Oscar De La Renta inspired dress (custom made by a seamstress I know) was used for our registry appointment and a photo shoot with Lauren straight after. And then I changed into my long dress for our religious wedding and reception. The long dress was made from 2 vintage dresses (circa 1920’s) I had bought on a trip back home to Seattle, WA USA from a charity shop. I brought them back to London and had my amazing seamstress put them together!”
“I wanted a really sweet fur cape or jacket and looked everywhere. I found such a sweet vintage fox cape in the Portobello Market (just around the corner from our house), for such a bargain! And I still wear it when we go out sometimes! It’s gorgeous. I found amazing Jimmy Choo (super sparkly) shoes that were perfect and just what I had been looking for for months (and my amazing fiancé bought them for me!). Can you believe it was actually HIS idea to go into Jimmy Choo to look? haha! Good man. But I wore my trusty uggs while tromping around the street hailing cabs.”
So last Tuesday I headed up to Luella’s Boudoir in Wimbledon to meet the all time UK wedding blogging greats. I’d had this little idea to organise a photo shoot with all my favourite wedding bloggers and some amazing suppliers (of course!) late last year and I was so excited to see it all pulled off. A lot of organisation went into this day and I’m so thrilled with how it all turned out.
One word – EPIC!
My little idea turned into a day-long shoot fest of love (there was some seriously gushing “OMG I love your blog, it’s so great to meet you in real life”) and amazing teamwork. I am literally chomping at the bit to share the final images (shot on a Hasselblad no less…more on this + how on earth we got our hands on one to come!) and the incredible behind the scenes video (and it is believe me!)
Gush gush gush!
After the shoot, I was whisked off to Mark Niemierko’s Valentines Party at Browns Bride. All the details on this fabulous party will be hitting the blog later today.
HUGE LOVE to everyone that was involved on the day (full list below – check them out!) and stand by for the final epic reveal next Monday 9am. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK. So excited!!
Emmaline & Guy had a 2 day wedding – the first, a modern urban ceremony, which took place in London at The Soho Hotel and the second, a more classic and countryside reception, at Gayhurst House, Milton Keynes. “We had contemplated getting married close to where we live in London, but Gayhurst was too much of a beautiful location to miss out on, so I think this made us love our civil ceremony at Soho House even more”, explained Emmaline. “Since the hotel opened we have spent many evenings there with friends and because of my job in PR I have been to lots of private screenings in the cinema there too. With just our parents and ourselves, we had a really special day, carrying out all the legalities of the marriage before Guy and I boarded a flight to Dubai for a 5 day ‘mini-moon’, making sure we had time to relax in the sun just before the big day.”
“Because a wedding had never been hosted on the croquet lawn on the grounds before, we had a lot of additional logistics to sort, for example there was no running water for the caterers and in the days running up to the wedding we had to have a bridge erected from a neighbouring field so that the marquee, caterer and furniture could be delivered. Understandably this added a whole other dimension of stress during planning and on the day (especially when the groom and father of the bride were still trying to fix the spurting water supply 2 hours before the ceremony! However looking back, everything worked out so well and this feeling of achievement adds to the feel good factor when we reflect on our day.”
Emmaline’s wedding dress was created by Sarah Treble. She wore this with Christian Louboutin shoes and A Handmade silk hydrangea flower hairpiece to match those on the wedding dress created by Bailey Tomlin. ” The dress really was one of the most important things to me when I thought about the big day – I always had a vision of what I wanted. I spent a year ripping out pictures from catwalk shows and fashion magazines and eventually found Sarah Treble. After our first meeting I was convinced she could bring my dream to life. We then realised Sarah would be moving to Devon, a 7 hour round trip from London which would make fittings trickier than usual, but I just couldn’t imagine anyone else being able to help.”