Category Archives: How To…

How to…Have a Perfectly Imperfect Life

I live and I breathe Rock n Roll Bride. It is my life. It is my biggest passion. It is my obsession. I know from reading the hundreds of submissions and emails I receive from you all that you live and breathe it too. You ‘get’ it. You believe in it and you love the ideas behind it. But you know what, I have a confession. I sometimes feel like a fraud.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll read a lot of blogs religiously. You’ll pour over the beautiful people and their stunning weddings on Style Me Pretty, their effortlessly cool homes on Design Sponge and their awesomely unique design and style ideas on Etsy. We love to read these sites for ‘inspiration’ but secretly, don’t they make us feel a little bit like a failure? Do you ever read blogs and think “I’m not beautiful enough”? Do you ever wish you had more to spend on your wedding? Do you ever wish you lived in one of those achingly cool, funky and stylish apartments?

Yeah, me too.

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re planning (or have planned) a Rock n Roll wedding but sometimes, just sometimes, do you ever get that teeny tiny little twinge of the green eyed monster when you see that size zero blonde with her perfectly gorgeous husband and their perfectly stylish Martha Stewart wedding? I bet she didn’t sit up until 2am making stationary or hunting for months to find a dress that didn’t make her look like a blancmange. I bet she didn’t look at hundreds of photographers’ blogs desperately searching for one that could capture her wedding whilst coming in nicely under budget. I bet she knew exactly where to look and who to book, and of course I bet she got her first choices on everything.

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How to…Perfect Your Wedding Day Look

Credit: Kirsty Mitchell Photography

For this week’s guest post I asked the incredibly talented hair & make up extraordinaire Elbie Van Eeden to give us a little bit of advice about how to perfect your wedding day look.

♥  ♥  ♥

So, you’ve dreamt about this day for pretty much your WHOLE LIFE. Your ideas may or may not have changed, and you may or may not still choose to get married in the biggest, fluffiest ballgown or get married in a church like you always imagined you would.  Now as this is Rock ‘n Roll Bride, I’m sure you’ve heard of having YOUR wedding day the way YOU’D want it, not how society expects you to have it – why should your hair & make up choices be any different?

Credit: RVDS Photography

How does this affect your hair and make-up?
Bridal hair and make-up has been looking the same for years and years – a bit of blusher for rosy cheeks and soft contouring for the sparkly eyes (in browns or greys) but why stick with tradition when your wedding will be anything but?  I’m not talking all-out theatrical (unless that’s your thing!) but why wear layers and layers of foundation when normally you’d wear none?

Credit: Kirsty Mitchell Photography

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How to…Get the Best out of Rock n Roll Bride

Credit: via make yeah!

OK so I love you guys. I’ve been reading all of your responses to my readers survey (nearly 1000 of them!!) and now my poor web/IT guru husband & I have got a lot of work to do to implement some of your fabulous ideas! However I wanted to take the time to write this little User Guide style post to try and make your Rock n Roll Bride experience even better in the interim.

A few little niggles about the site came up over and over again and while some of them are major overhaul kind of things (and a lot of them were actually things I had been wanting to change anyway) there were a few points raise about the usability of the site which may be rectified with a bit of clarification. As a total blog-obsessive myself I think it’s easy for me to forget that coming to my site as a new reader might be a bit of a daunting experience in terms of where to start, and how to navigate your way around it in the easiest fashion. Here’s where this post comes in. Get your notebooks at the ready class and I hope this guide is useful!

Search
One of the things that came up over and over again was the Search facility. First of all, I do have a search bar on the site. It is situated just above where it says ‘Link Love’ and ‘About the Girl’. Secondly some of you said they didn’t feel it worked very well.

The search bar I’ve chosen is a Google search. That basically means it searches my site the way Google searches the internet. Therefore if you search for ‘DIY’ for example, the results brought up will be any post which is either tagged as ‘DIY’ or features the word ‘DIY’. The top result will be the most popular or most relevant post to your search based on keywords used. Again, and as with Google, when you click a link it will change the whole page to the link you’ve clicked, so to go back and see more results you do have to type your search term into the box again. However to avoid this, simply ‘right-click’/’open in a new tab’ (on a PC, sorry I don’t know the Mac equivalent) to keep the search intact.

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What Exactly IS a Rock n Roll Wedding?

Credit: Malgosia Bela by Mario Testino via Fashion Gone Rogue

The question I dread when I meet people for the first time (which is of course the question that they then always ask) is “So, what’s the most ‘Rock n Roll’ wedding you’ve ever seen?” (and yes, they sometimes even do the air quotes {{shudder}} )

First off CHRIST, if they knew how many weddings I’d seen over the last 3 years their heads might explode. It is a lot! How do I choose between them all? How can I possibly pick just one? Or even just one style of wedding? The great thing about Rock n Roll weddings is the vast differences between them all. It would be like a choice between a pair of Vivienne Westwood shoes or a huge big pink cupcake. They are not mutually exclusive and I want both please!

The other thing that happens to me a lot is people say (usually in comments and anonymously I might add) “Well that wedding is not very Rock n Roll is it? Why did you feature that?” or even worse I once got “Who the hell are you? You’re not 50’s rockabilly in style at all! You are a fake. You are not Rock n Roll!” Erm…correct! I am not 50’s rockabilly in any way. Have I ever claimed to be?

Credit: Steve Gerrard Photography

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How to…Know When it’s Right to Take on Blog Sponsors

Credit: Emma Case Photography

I like writing posts like this. They get my brain a-flexing and they’re always a little bit controversial…and that’s all good to me! I constantly receive emails from newbie (or sometimes even quite established) bloggers from all niches (not just wedding) asking for my help or opinion on how to go about taking on blog sponsors and how to make money from their blog. I try to reply to every single one, however of course how much detail I go into generally depends on my current busy-ness situation. So, I’ve been toying with the idea for a little while to put all my thoughts, musings and opinions (for that’s what these are) into one place so I can hopefully direct future question-askers right here. I’m sharing my own experience and the trials and tribulations I’ve had through this ‘making money from blogging thing’ and am in no way claiming to be an expert. However I hope in some way I can help some of your starting out in this journey we call blogging…oh and for those of you out there that berate me for making money as a blogger…well…I’d suggest not reading on.

When I started blogging nearly 3 years ago I didn’t really understand the potential of the medium or really what it was all about. I had no idea about SEO, I didn’t understand the ‘unwritten rules’ about how or what to blog and  it certainly didn’t even cross my mind that any money could be made from it.

In the Beginning…

I made mistakes. We all do. I blogged things that I didn’t have permission to do so. I didn’t credit properly. I didn’t know that blogs had exclusivity policies…and yes I pissed some people off. When you first start blogging its scary, exciting and exhilarating. You really don’t know what you’re letting yourself in for and anyone who thinks running a successful blog is a walk in the park or an easy money maker needs to get their head examined. Egos, turf wars and a (more often than not) predominantly female group (certainly in the wedding blogging industry) can and does lead to fierce competition for the best features…and something which I’m seeing more now than I ever have before, a hell of a lot of bitchiness. 

Nowadays blogging, particularly in the UK seems much more prominent. Most people now do seem to be aware of the magnitude of blogs, how important they are to suppliers, wedding vendors and brides and therefore have some kind idea of things like exclusivity and transparency. I wanted to be open and honest about my (sordid haha!) past so you can all be acutely aware that I ain’t some kind of guru. I’ve made the same mistakes a lot of newbie bloggers have and will continue to do. I was just a few years ahead of you is all. So firstly, don’t beat yourselves up about it. When I got my first ‘Oi, you’ve copieeeeed me’ email I died a little bit inside. But do I care now? Do I hell! Learn from it. Move on and become a better blogger.

OK, soul-bearing over, let’s get on with the real reason behind this post shall we?

As soon as I started blogging, I loved it. I’d found something I enjoyed and the inner geek inside me rejoiced that there seemed to be like-minded people like me out there. I worked extremely hard to make connections within the industry – both with other bloggers and with suppliers and vendors. I definitely learnt the hard way how to do this and it took at least a year before I actually met anyone in this country (everything and everyone was in The States at this point!) Even though, looking back at how much time and effort I put into establishing myself, it was a pretty hard slog, I’m happy to say that not only have I somehow come out the other side making a living from doing what I love, but I’ve made some pretty damn awesome friends along the way.

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How to…Get your Wedding Featured on a Blog

natalia-vodianova-by-mario-testino-collection

I get a lot of submissions. And I mean a LOT. So many in fact, that most people might break down and cry if they saw my inbox in the morning. However I LOVE it and I enjoy looking at every single one – really really truly do so don’t stop them coming! However there are some common mistakes made with submission-sending and I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight a few that I see over and over and over to try and make the process of getting your wedding or photo shoot featured on Rock n Roll Bride a smooth one for both of us.

So, here are my top tips which will most certainly give you more chance of getting featured.

♥ I put up a submissions guidelines page quite a while ago now. Please please please read this before you send me anything.

♥ I hate emails that say ‘Hi check out my website, I’d love you to feature some of my work!’ I’m sorry but I reeeally don’t have the time to look through your entire site and pick something. Send me something specific that suits the Rock n Roll/alternative style of my blog.

♥ As a general rule I usually only feature professional wedding photographs. ‘Uncle Bob’ and diy photography usually don’t make the cut. However don’t be put off submitting just because you didn’t have a professional photographer. I have featured weddings in the past which were just shot by friends and family and I would still love to see your wedding!

♥ I feature weddings, engagements, day after shoots, bridal shoots, trash the dress shoots, boudoir shoots and even the odd random- yet-way-too-awesome fashion shoot. I do not feature maternity shoots, senior shoots, baby shoot, bar mitzvahs, christenings and family sessions.

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