Hi everyone, I don’t get the opportunity to write much on these pages anymore so if you don’t know who I am please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Adam Crohill and I am co-owner and Creative Director here at Rock My Wedding. Today’s wedding is rather special for me because, well… It’s my wedding.
Lizzie and I married at Elmore Court in the Cotswolds in September 2016. We had an outdoor ceremony, Lizzie wore an Anna Campbell wedding gown and I wore a suit by Cad & The Dandy But enough about me, I’m going to place you in the capable hands of my wife…
Martin and Ceri (or Slim and The Rat as you will come to know them) are childhood sweethearts who tied the knot in 2011 Rowton Castle after 13 years together. They cleverly themed their wedding around a sort of romantic ‘time capsule’ that represents the their relationship and life together. I won’t spoil it too much, all I will say is that it’s a super cute idea!
I’d better start with our names: I’m Ceri but early on in our relationship, Slim affectionately named me ‘The Rat’, due to, he says lovingly: my ‘rodent – like’ features! It took a while for my mum to accept, but ‘The Rat’ is generally how I am referred to by his family and friends. Slim’s real name is Martin, but he had the nickname Slimmer well before we met. After emerging from a Grange-Hill worthy love-triangle, we started ‘going out together’ in April 1998, when I was in Year 10 and he was in Year 12. By the time we eventually became husband and wife in August last year, we had already spent half of our lives together, so it was fitting that the personal touches of our wedding day developed around the idea of ‘Old Love’.
The inspiration for much of our wedding day came from my romantic vision of one-day digging out a large vintage trunk and uncovering the details of an old love story – old ticket stubs from our first dates at Pola Cinema, faded photographs and worn letters, dried valentines flowers and a beautiful antique wedding dress and veil. And so emerged a starting point and the idea for the table plan: created out of an old vintage suitcase, containing features of all our table themes, which were named after a range of wedding anniversaries – paper, wood, lace, flowers, china, pearls and diamonds…
One of the lines from our reading ‘The Art of a Good Marriage’ talks about how marriage is never being too old to hold hands and we carried this notion into our Save the Dates, which were based on a selection of photographs I’d collected off eBay of couples, young and old, from Victorian times to the 1950s. Our invitations from Hello Lucky carried the verse from the poem The Owl and the Pussy Cat – ‘oh let us be married, too long we have tarried’, which we thought was fitting after 13 years!
Our ceremony was held in Holy Trinity Church, Leighton in Mid-Wales, the same village church that my mum and dad, nan and granddad and great grand-parents got married in. Our guests were treated to a brief history of this beautiful Church in their Order of Service. We also gave out an Order of Celebration, printed on a brown luggage tag, giving guests details of the run of the day.
Our Wedding reception was held at Rowton Castle, a beautiful 17th century building and our tables were identified with signage created with old Charles Dicken’s books and the wedding photographs of our families through the decades. The book idea was taken from Ruffled. We also got the beautiful idea of guests writing us love notes from Once Wed. We put a blank insert in with the favours and asked our guests to write their wish for us, or their advice for a successful marriage. Each table had a glass jar to put their notes in. We printed our menus on pretty doilies, which could fit neatly on a side plate.
The paper theme was also carried into the wedding presents. For Slim I made a small scrapbook of mementos that I had kept of our relationship in an old shoebox for the last 13 years – cinema stubs, extracts from my diaries, old emails and letters, photos and currency from our travels. As a present for my mum, I sent a photo from her wedding album to a Megan Hamilton on Etsy and she made a beautiful sketch of her wedding dress, which I framed and gave to her on the morning of the wedding. I also got a sketch of my own dress which I displayed in the suitcase table plan to represent the lace table. For my bridesmaids, I bid on vintage ‘Little Women’ and ‘Good Wives’ books on ebay, which had beautiful inscriptions from a time passed.
Given our welsh roots, we decided to give the female guests a mini wooden Welsh Love Spoon, along with a brief history of this welsh tradition in with the favour pouches, which my mum made out of an old lace curtain. Slim will tell you about his idea for the boys’ favours:
Slim: Suspecting that the boys would not feel the same excitement towards the the 17th century Welsh tradition as much as the ladies, I instead saw the opportunity to bring a piece of my Vegas stag do to the wedding favours by having a sweepstake from that week’s major horse races from Kempton to Cheltenham. My Best Man and I spent the afternoon before the wedding in the local bookies flitting away the budget by taking very bad tips from the local betting connoisseurs. 15 races later, the modest winnings were sealed in bro
wn envelopes ready to be collected by the lucky guests who held the matching booking slip that was placed inside the favour envelopes. The happy winners picked up enough to invest in half a pint on the wedding evening!
We were engaged for 2 years and the deposit was put down on ‘the one’ within 2 weeks of the proposal! This could have been risky given my tendency to get bored of clothes and outfits very quickly but I never tired of looking at it and I have not since seen a dress that is more ‘me’ than Charlotte Balbier’s ‘Tabitha’. I kept a scrapbook of all the styles I liked and one day I was with my sister looking at dresses on Charlotte Balbier’s beautiful website and we both gasped as we clicked on the front and back views of Tabitha – this was it!
I immediately searched for stockists and although I did try on a range of styles and got semi-swayed by some other lace numbers, Tabitha was the one that I kept coming back to. The beautiful antique gold lace suited my skin tone and as it had a 1930s feel, I could visualise this dress being tenderly lifted from my imaginary vintage trunk decades from now! I bought the dress from Angie at She Bridal in Ironbridge. She was fabulous and so patient when I returned to her beautiful shop every Christmas, Easter and Summer (we live abroad) to try out a new accessory with the dress.
Given the unusual shade of the dress we imagined that it would be quite difficult to find a matching veil, but we found one with ease at Berketex Bride. I loved the cathedral length and the beautiful embroidery. My ‘something old’ comprised of a beautiful 1920’s silk and lace hankie, to which my sister sewed the date of our wedding, as well as a fabulous 1920s antique piano shawl that matched the shade of the dress perfectly. Both items were bought from Ashman Antiques in Welshpool – a beautiful treasure cove of vintage goodies.
I bought a pair of peep-toe heels with an ankle strap in an antique pink colour, set off nicely by the gold minx on my toe nails courtesy of my fabulous friend and beautician Melissa at her award winning salon, Figure and Face.
My ‘something new’ was bought for me by my mum and sister – it was a beautiful diamante brooch from Liberty in Love and I had it sewn on to the dress. It was the perfect style, shape and size to customise the dress and it was also called ‘Tabitha’. Slim bought me diamond stud earrings as my wedding present and I wear these as a daily reminder of the most fantastic day.
In my hair I wore a diamante and pearl side tiara, also from She Bridal. One thing I was sure of was that I didn’t want a typical bridal up-do. My scrapbook was brimming with images of romantic, backcombed ethereal styles. After a few disastrous trials, I realised that to get the look I wanted I would need a true creative professional and on seeing the images of Rock My Wedding Real Bride Mahj, I decided to contact the Hepburn Collection.
My bridesmaids and I had the best day when we travelled down to Sev’s salon and after showing him an inspiration image from a Jenny Packham shoot, he just got the style I was after. But as the wedding approached, I’ll admit I got swayed by the loose locks of the Kate Middleton and Kate Moss weddings and at 8pm the night before, an undeterred Sev created some effortless waves in my hair. He also created beautiful and effortless looking styles for my bridesmaids. Although I didn’t get to meet her, Sev’s wife Roz was the perfect organiser as I sent emails of pictures and questions!
When we lived apart in universities in different cities, it became a bit of a joke that Slim always used to visit and tell me how he’s bought me some flowers, but left them on the train! So when I came across this poem by Wendy Cope it made me smile and we put a framed copy of it on the ‘Flowers’ table.
Flowers had been the one thing that originally I was pretty clueless about but I added to my scrapbook with images of beautiful bouquets and I loved the day I spent with my Great Aunt, trawling her garden sampling different options. In the end our bouquets were made up of pink hydrangeas, blush and pink roses and September flower.
For the table centres we trawled vintage and charity shops and built up an impressive collection of china teacups, teapots, vases and a china boot! We placed these inside birdcages and each one was unique, with an element of the table name inside, e.g. draping pearls or lace, flowers etc.
The cakes were an important element of the day as we are both self-confessed addicts of Magnolia Bakery (we’re lucky to have one in Bloomingdales in Dubai). A friend from university has her own cake business called Sapori and, armed with her Magnolia Bakery recipe book, she did a fantastic job of creating both our favourite three-tired, frosted iced cakes, and cupcakes, which we displayed on china vintage cake stands. They looked and tasted beautiful!
Given the rodent nature of my nickname I was so excited to find this Unusual Unique Handmade Craft Gifts, who created a bride and groom mice cake topper for us. I sent them some of the lace from my dress and some of the bridesmaid dress material and they used them to make cute wedding clothes for the mice!
I had the best bridesmaids any girl could hope for – my best friend Vicky and sister Menna. They, with the help of my other fabulous friends planned me the most A.mazing Ibiza hen week and vintage garden party. They both looked stunning on the Wedding day. Ever since Charlotte and Carries weddings on SATC, I always loved bridesmaids with different dresses, colours or patterns and after experimenting with different colour combinations on the Dessy website, we decided on 2 full length, matt satin dresses in contrasting kiwi green and carnation pink (they even had their own mini-trains – Pippa Middleton eat your heart out!) The colours complimented the romantic vintage feel we wanted to achieve.
Slim: Not being a religious follower of fashion, I had the challenge of making my future wife proud of how I looked on our wedding day, but with a 2 year window of preparation, a few visits to the gym and some slimming colours, I just about achieved it!
After careful consideration and looking at the odd shapes, sizes and pasty complexions of the groomsmen – along with the logistical nightmare that would have been ahead of us to purchase suits in different countries, we decided that the easiest option was to hire. We called on the services of Moss Bros. Wanting to fit in with the vintage theme but also maintain my dignity, I negotiated with the Rat to lose the top hat but keep the tails (this is my understanding of a good marriage: flexibility). After 15 minutes it was decided on: a grey 3-peice suit, complimented with a crisp white Thomas Pink shirt and cufflinks. The Rat bought our ties from Dessy, to tie in with the bridesmaids. All this was achieved with 1 year, 11 months and 15 days to spare!
Slim joked in his wedding speech that he was worried that the day after the wedding I would be mute, since admittedly bridal pretty had become a main topic of conversation for a fair few months! Brides to be, there’s no need to worry because once you’ve had the most amazing day of your life you can then relive it through your photos! Hiring the right photographer was important for us and we are over the moon that we that we booked Elton Mogg. I originally saw one of the wedding shoots he did on RMW and we are so pleased with our photos – he’s encapsulated the day so perfectly and naturally and we loved all the post-production work he did on the photos. Our apartment has turned into a bit of a shrine of the wedding and I’ve developed a bit of an addiction to buying photo frames!
Whether or not to get a videographer had been a tough decision and originally it was at the bottom of our list of priorities. However, we were persuaded by a friend who sold me by pointing out that it’s another historical document of the most important day of our life so far (I’m a history teacher!) and booking Rebecca Reville was definitely one of the best decisions we made. As soon as the wedding speeches were over, we were immediately grateful that we had booked her and we couldn’t wait to watch it all back. Rebecca is amazingly talented and our video is a beautiful collection of details of the day, with gorgeous selection of music.
We had decided to create a makeshift photo booth to capture some funny shots of our guests and we asked everyone to bring along their own props. We laughed so much at the pictures the next day and now we’ve now made a calendar with some of the best!
The thought of a first dance stressed us both out so much that we had decided not to have one. However, seeing that our guests weren’t going to join the dance floor until we did, our friends quickly downloaded Ben E King’s ‘Stand by Me’ and we soon got into it!
Slim: Wanting the evening entertainment to reflect our characters and make for an enjoyable and edgy feel, we moved away from the classic Wedding DJ and gave the decks to a group of friends who created the perfect soundtrack to our wedding night with everything from filtered 70s disco to beats that wouldn’t have been out of place at DC10.
2011 really was such a special year and everyday I am grateful for having such an amazing husband, family and friends. Tips? Make sure you’re really organised on the morning of the wedding so you get to enjoy it, as it is all part of the day. I framed an itinerary so that everyone knew when they were having the hair and make-up done, eating breakfast etc. I also timed in 20 minutes, where we all went on to the patio with champagne and strawberries and swapped gifts. Think you’re going to be too stressed out to sleep the night before? I put three drops of rescue remedy on my tongue the night before and in my head I imagined the bride I wanted to be – calm, smiling, confident! I fell asleep with that image and was so relaxed I ended up sleeping through my alarm and getting up just minutes before Sev arrived to start out hair! We took on board what everyone says about the day going in a flash, at key points throughout the day we just stepped back to take everything in. And the last piece of advice – if you can stretch to it, get a video because it’s something else to get excited about seeing after the day has passed!
I also would like to give a massive thanks to RMW and all the RMW brides for being a constant source of inspiration for our wedding day. I still love checking in every few days.
Julie is a gorgeous, curvy, tiny dot of a thing with size two feet (!!) and aims for her Big Day to be all about timeless elegance and sophisticated chic.
For the shoot we decided her two looks would be completely different from each other on the frock front but similar on the hair and make-up. Julie had requested in particular a 60’s siren style for eyes and lips after seeing our recent post on Ban.do where the model is rocking some rather fabulous flutter appeal and a natural glossy pout…..
And as you would have read from Julie’s hair description, we had a real challenge to find something that would look classically pretty but remain looking so for the ENTIRE DAY.
No mean feat folks.
So as per our shoot style sheet we figured the side (slightly tousled) bun would be the perfect choice. And my it so was lovelies, finished off with the beautiful Charleston Hair Grips by Stephanie Brown, Julie looked the very picture of Bridal gorgeousness.
Catherine Hughes at Ivy Clara: Julie’s skin was best suited to a light coverage, but as we were going for the sixties look, I still wanted to create a semi-matte, flawless finish. For this I used Giorgio Armani Face Fabric Foundation all over the face, including the eye area followed withYSL Touche Eclat around the eye, nose and mouth area to lighten up any dark areas. This was then set with a light dusting of Mac Mineralise Skinfinish onto the t-zone to minimise shine. I then applied ‘Perfect 10’ powder by Benefit onto the cheek bones, nose and chin to create a gorgeous glow.
For Julie I used the New ‘Pretty Powerful’ Spring 2011 palette by Bobbi Brown. We wanted to create a soft pink sixties inspired look, so this was perfect. First, I began by applying Mac Paint Pot in Painterly, all over the lid up to the brow bone to act as a base. I then used the colour ‘Pink Flannel’ from the Bobbi Brown Palette all over the lid just above the crease line. I used a patting motion to increase the coverage and longevity. I then applied ‘Pink Chiffon’ using a damp brush all along the crease line and outer corner of the eye.
To increase the depth of colour, I also blended in some ‘Da Bling’ by Mac into the outer corners of the eye socket. False Lash Mascara by MAC was then applied to top and bottom lashes and some sixties inspired lashed added- Eyelure Naturalites style 090. A thick, sixties style top line using ‘Penultimate Eyeliner’ by MAC completed the look.
Mac Mineralize Blusher in Dainty was applied to the apples of the cheeks to create for the sixties inspired cheek.
To finish Lancome’s Colour Fever Gloss in Rose ballerina was applied to the lips to create a nude, shiny finish that complemented the soft pink focus of her look.
Look 1 – Fishtail Fancy
I don’t think Julie will mind me saying that she wasn’t 100% on the whole fishtail shape idea, and it is certainly very different to the gown she has actually chosen for W-day. However, she was willing to give it a go and lordy, the Rosa Clara stunner fitted her LIKE. A. GLOVE. Delicious, especially around the bust area where dresses can sometimes create that dreaded “gape”.
To really appreciate the entire sexy hourglass perfection Julie was taken outside in the grounds of Hampton Manor and made to brave the cold, her purple coat provided protection from the chill however and some natural caught-in-the-moment images.
Proving that no matter what height or size you are you can still wear the dress you love Julie donned the same Essence floral applique gown as Naomi, looking equally as lovely.
To enhance the eyes for ultimate evening glamour and drama Julie’s peepers were further defined with a deep minxy fushia shadow in the socket area. We. Love.
The Brides Story
Julie: I was feeling very nervous as I arrived at the venue, as I realised I had been looking forward to the day so much, I hadn’t even thought about what was going to happen and what I would need to do. My fears escalated as I opened the door to the suite where all the action was going to take place as there was soooo many people there, and there were still more to come! I started to panic ever so slightly.
Within ten minutes I began to relax as although I’d never met any of these people before in my life, everyone was talking to each other like they had known one another for years! The relaxed but excited atmosphere made me feel really comfortable and I began to settle in to the hoopla that was going on around me.
I‘d had one make up trial before the shoot, which didn’t go well so I didn’t really have much to go on when it came to wedding make up. However when I was in the chair and Catherine was applying my make up I could tell straight away she was a pro. She was telling me with such enthusiasm about all the products she was using and what they did and why she was using them. She also spent a very, very long time perfecting the look she was creating, stepping back to look at my face from all angles, which made me realise she was a bit of a perfectionist, and wasn’t about to send me out there looking like David Bowie! This experience was an amazing help to me as I can now see the difference between someone putting make up on my face and a professional make up artist.
My hair has always been my crowning glory and I do very little to it, mostly just straighten it and have a simple hair cut with no layers or texture. As a result I really struggled to see what could be done with it. I have always really wanted a ‘Hollywood Glamour’ look for my wedding day rather than your traditional wedding updo, yet whenever I use these words I seem to be faced with rather blank faces. So when I met Sev and the first words to come out of his mouth were ‘red carpet’ I knew we were on the same page. I knew now I did not need to worry so I left him to it and was entertained by the hilarious banter between Sev and his wife and partner Roz. At this point a glass of champagne somehow appeared in my hand and I was able to enjoy it while the chaos went on around me.
Throughout the preparations I was aware that Aaron was going to be filming parts of the day, however the best thing about Aaron is that at no point during the day did I have any inkling of when he was filming, this was really interesting as I have never been filmed in my life before so I wasn’t sure how it would work. It was nothing like I imagined. I thought it would be like being followed by the paps or something, but I totally didn’t even notice what was going on.
I’ve also never had any non school professional photographs taken before, and I always feel that I look really wooden when posing for pictures and as a result have opted for a more reportage style of photography for the wedding. There was no way that I couldn’t pose on this occasion as the shoot was about styling and the dresses. I got a bit of stage fright when I was standing on some steps with a wedding dress on, but while Chris was snapping away Danni and Rebecca were jumping around in the background doing the poses for me to copy, so they really put me at ease and were both like the entertainment! Danni’s tactic is to distract you by talking to and telling you stories while Chris gets the shots. A great tag team!
The day was a blast and I was so impressed by all the professionals and how they all pulled together and helped each other in order to achieve the best possible outcome. But I suppose the thing I realised the most is that in all that sort of excitement and commotion, the day really flew by. This scared me a little as it really put into perspective how short the actual wedding day will be, so I’m determined now not to waste any time on insignificant things on the day, and dedicate my time to being happy, feeling fantastic and most of all being in love!
If you saw Friday’s post you will already be aware that we have a selection of RMW Team styled delicious coming up all this week. And it’s been a long time coming let me tell you. We’ve been asked on numerous occasions in the past to utilise our W-day industry knowledge and get involved with various shoots and events but if the truth be known, 1) We have never really had the time ( yes we all have a full time day job as well as the blog – I know we must be nuts!) and 2) Frankly, we didn’t think we were experienced enough.
Until now that is.
Of course it would have been extremely easy for us to enlist an uber talented wedding planner who would make whatever we do look chic but let’s be honest here, what would we have contributed exactly?
There’s the thing you see. NOT A FAT LOT. And just for the record, apart from the occasional silly pictures that we may share with you once in a while, we’re not particularly interested in posing around in them either. So I guess that just leaves us with actually styling the majority of these shoots ourselves, and you know what? that’s just fine with us lovelies.
Rock My Wedding was created because there just wasn’t an inspirational wedding blog for UK brides and Rebecca, Adam and I thought it was about time there ruddy well was! We wanted to showcase unique ideas and innovative industry suppliers so that you gorgeous lot could ultimately have the Big Day that you’ve always dreamed of. Your Day Your Way as it were. And this week’s selection of delectable delights is no exception.
We’ve pulled together some of our favourite bridal gowns, knock-your-socks-off-they-are-so-lovely accessories, amazing make-up and hair styles and even some outside-the-box bridesmaids fashion to really get your bridey pulses racing.
Oh and of course we are not just sticking to one particular style necessarily, we’re giving you elegant and timeless, ethereal and bohemian and a little pinch of good ol’ rock n roll. Because we LOVE IT ALL. And we sincerely hope you guys do too.
Picture this. Rebecca and I standing in the middle of my living room at 1 o’clock in the morning surrounded by glossy magazines. Trashed glossy magazines. We’ve literally torn up the entire contents of a few months worth of Tatler, Vogue, InStyle, Grazia, Look, Marie Claire, various Bridal titles……. you get the picture. We were on a mission, a mission to create a Rock My Wedding “Style Sheet” that would shape the design and content of our January styling adventure.
Um, it was a little bit daunting. And dare I say it, more than a little bit scary. I mean….. where do you even start?
For me the lightbulb moment came with a contact sheet formatted image of Duffy in last month’s Elle, it was cute, quirky and fun, all the things I love about our real weddings and what I hope we achieve on these very pages. For Rebecca is was a chunky plait headband from a Narciso Rodriguez advertorial , sophisticated, unique and extraordinarily pretty.
And there you have it. The key elements of what Rock My Wedding style meant to us.
So with our vision confirmed what we needed next was a team of talented industry professionals that could bring our ideas to life. And that meant a hairdresser, make-up artist, dress designer(s), an accessory provider, amazing photographers, a videographer, a stunning venue……..
Yup, nothing like setting ourselves a challenge 😉
Although I’ve got to own up to the fact that really it wasn’t that difficult. There sure are a whole host of super suppliers in the UK these days and a whole host of them that already embrace the Rock My Wedding ethos.
We’ve got Severin Hubert glossing locks who’s big net balls (!) caused a bit of a stir on Friday. Catherine Hughes of Ivy Clara making faces look flawless, Liberty In Love and their selection of shiny gorgeousness and Mamfii Bridal who supplied us with some DELICIOUS dresses. To capture everything to perfection we enrolled the cooler than cool Chris and Dani at Chris Barber Media who have been long term RMW supporters and sponsors and Aaron at Reel Weddings, who came in last minute and made a video so unbelievably brilliant, between us all we’ve watched it over a hundred times…….
Of course that just leaves one REALLY important thing to consider right? Yes it does. The models. Who are they going to be?
Why our REAL brides of course!
That’s right lovelies, Naomi, Julie and Mahj are going to transform before your very eyes from pretty young brides-to-be to all out glamourama. And lordy do they look absolutely ruddy FABULOUS.
And of course all of this is very fancy and all but it’s also very ACHIEVABLE. Both Severin Hubert and Catherine Hughes will be sharing what products they use and the full on How-To on complete bridal beauty, ideal if you are looking at ways to save some much needed pennies come W-day.
Oh and just to give you a little sneak peek of what went on behind the scenes……
Because most of all folks, we want to make this wedding planning lark fun……ok?
And I’m thinking not only a fun theme for W-day but also a hen party or special birthday celebration ( I should know, I picked it for my 30th!). Look out for the girls magazine-worthy hair and make-up looks and chunky statement neck-candy.
Jo has written all about the experience for you gorgeous lot so make sure you sit back, relax and enjoy the pretty.
The Cool Britannia photo shoot brought together some of the best British bridal suppliers for a one-day wedding inspiration extravaganza in London. Covering all the key elements of a wedding from the gowns and hair styling to transport and table décor, the shoot showcases some seriously bold and bright eye candy for couples planning a city inspired wedding. Celebrating all that we love about Britain and a year of not just one but TWO royal weddings, 2011 is the year of all years to host an unashamedly patriotic occasion and be truly proud to be British!
The Hair and Make-Up
When it comes to hair artistry, there really is nobody like Severin Hubert at Hepburn Collection . Gracing the pages of Rock My Wedding on many an occasion, Severin is known as the King of hair and together with his partner Roz Edwards, they were the perfect duo to create a statement bridal look for our gorgeous models.
“I am a French romantic who has always admired and adored the royal family so for me being part of this shoot was a privilege. I wanted to add a little of that Je ne sais quoi to our Cool Britannia theme. Something not too obvious but fitting nevertheless. For Gemma, the dress was simple but elegant so I decided to keep the front very natural and off her beautiful face but at the back I wanted something that looked quite regal so I created three pony tails twisting each one into each other. A simple tiara fit for a princess fitted perfectly on the head. For Chara, her makeup was quite strong as was the dress with the red, so that gave me the go ahead to create something more dynamic but with a twist of vintage. I started with a pony tail and added a padding/donut for volume at the front on the side. Soft curl waves were made to cover the volume using the pony tail. With this hair style you can either leave as it is or go for it and add a real statement piece.”
Kate Messer is an internationally travelled make-up artist with more than 14 years experience and a track record of working with some of the biggest names in the beauty industry. The shoot was the first time Severin and Katy had joined forces but looking at their amazing teamwork, we’re certain it won’t be the last!
“For Chara I wanted statement lips so went for red, but I kept it matte and not too deep or blue so as to keep it bridal and less vampy! With such a bold lip, I kept the skin sheer yet flawless, neautral blush used to contour and a highlighted cheek. The eyes were a modern take on the 50’s flick but with a soft grey used instead of black and winged false lashes It was important to me that it looked modern and not like a recreation. I wanted to make this echo another era, not copy it.”
“On the lovely Gemma, I saw a classic beauty and so followed a more traditional bridal theme but with a romantic yet sexy edge. After giving her a smooth, creamy base I worked slates and topaz shades around the eyes, including lining the inner rims with a black/gold kohl. The cheeks were rosy and pinched and the lip was softly deepened with a glossy finish. Gemma herself gave me the inspiration for this look with her young, feminine features. I wanted to give her a look that was sophisticated and classic yet a little bit sexy. In a subtle way!”
The Wedding Planner
With oodles of experience in wedding planning and a long family history in the industry Kim Neville, Director of The Pink Pumpkin wedding consultancy knows everything there is to know about designing unique, show-stopping occasions. With a bold and beautiful theme in mind, Kim set to with planning the details for a sensational Cool Britannia wedding shoot and with the help of some seriously cool props and styling, added the finesse and finishing touches that makes a wedding stand out from the crowd. And boy, would this occasion make statement!
“The concept for the Cool Britannia shoot was for an elegant day but with many quirky, fun touches. Red, white and blue was the obvious colour palette choice, and the union jack motif and regal designs throughout echoed the theme. There is no better location that London and once aboard our fabulous Routemaster bus we were able to shoot by some of the city’s most famous landmarks; even popping into the pub for a cheeky pint on the way! Overall the shoot was colourful, stylish and above all heaps of fun.”
A cool and quirky photo shoot requires cool and quirky photographers – and who better than the lovely Kate and Craig at Craig Williams Photography . Renowned for their artistic and creative wedding photography, Kate and Craig were the perfect duo to get some fabulously fun photos.
“Jo contacted me and asked about shooting a Royal Wedding inspired shoot and when she mentioned the route master bus and a tour of London’s biggest landmarks, I was like “Hell Yeah!!”
“I wanted this shoot to reflect my style which is soft and romantic, and from the moment we got to the venue and met the awesome team involved, I knew it was going to be a fantastic shoot! I also had two amazing models to work with and getting escorted around London in a red bus to some of our greatest landmarks and taking pictures along the way is my idea of fun! This shoot for me is full of London romance without compromising on gorgeousness and glamour!!! I love the images and I hope you do too!!”
A Cool Britannia theme? Nowhere says British better than the Big Smoke and with the big royal wedding of William and Kate almost here, the location for such iconic shots simply had to be Westminster. From Westminster Abbey to Big Ben and the London Eye, we got the models strutting their stuff in front of every landmark in London’s most historic area resulting in some fantastic images. As the crowds of tourists and other photographers amassed to marvel over our models, we literally had to fight our way through to ensure Kate and Craig could get the best shots. To finish off the shoot before heading back to the venue, we even managed a quick pint in the Westminster Arms!
To transport us to all the sights on our little London road trip, the team from Routemaster Hire was a fantastic support and provided a beautifully restored traditional Routemaster which was the highlight of the day. No wedding in London would be the same without one of these buses and we had some seriously good fun aboard the bus!
Located just steps from Tate Britain and with incredible views across South Bank, 45 Millbank is a Grade 11 listed building and ideal location for a London wedding. Home to the world-famous Chelsea College of Art, the venue blends Edwardian classic with a modern eclectic twist.
Famed for her love of all things vintage and British bridal wear, gown designer Beverly Lister was on hand to style the models in gowns from her latest collection, inspired by a city look.
“With all eyes focused on the upcoming royal wedding, there is no cooler a place to be than London! I chose clean, city chic yet romantic styles for the shoot. The pillar box red satin of gown Scarlett pays homage to the red of double decker buses and phone boxes. Rio, with its billowing skirt in traditional bridal silk is fit for any princess! And Jane made me think of tea at the Ritz! I chose an elaborate floral headpiece reminiscent of days out at Ascot.”
Statement accessories by Cherished and Vivien Sherriff (all available from Evangeline Rose Bridal) completed the styled look.
In charge of creating the striking floral displays and bridal bouquet was the very talented Fulham based florist, Euphoric Flowers . With the philosophy that life is so much better with flowers in it, Euphoric Flowers is owned by partners Simon Nickell and Victoria Taberer-Bond and has earned itself a well deserved reputation as one of London’s finest florists.
“Our inspiration for the “Cool Britannia” shoot had to be red, white and blue, because nothing says britannia more than the colours of the Union Jack! But how do you do that with flowers? If you think of wedding flowers, the most popular and classic are roses, but not in blue! Then we thought of dyed roses and that inspired us to create our retro style arrangements using a red and white combination and spicing it up with a shock of blue that’s bound to attract attention. Are they real? Yes they are and, you can get them all year round!”
Stationery and Favours
To set the tone for the theme we needed stationery that was colourful and fun yet had a regal element. Renowned for their bold, vintage inspired stationery, Dottie Creations was our number one choice.
“We love designing and styling all things vintage so it was a thrill to be asked to come up with a stationery design based on red, white and blue British styling. For us ‘Cool Britannia’ conjured up images of the Union jack (for which we’d already created a stationery design), jubilees, street parties and bunting. For a royal wedding we knew we had to glam things up a bit so we incorporated our own little take on the royal coat of arms and added a monogram designed around the couples initials to mimic a royal cypher. As finishing touches, the bride and groom place settings had their own crowns and the tables were named after royal palaces illustrated by etchings we had created from vintage postcards. To give everything that extra wow factor we accessorised with royal blue satin ribbon, all fit for a Queen!”
Essex based Fancy Nancy are renowned for their fabulous and fun cake creations and director Juliet Sear created a masterpiece for the shoot.
“This was the perfect theme to have fun with. Working with the classic red, white and blue straight off the union jack, we created a kitsch, jaunty and fun cake design inspired by a street party decoration idea using red white and blue stripes, polka dots and florals. We used some of the elements from our latest range in Harvey Nichols to commemorate the royal wedding including our Vivienne Westwood inspired mixed colour roses to decorate the top tier and create a super cool cake that’s fun yet stylish.”
The lovely Royal Wedding biscuits were designed designed by The Biscuiteers to celebrate the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. From bouquets to bubbly, The Biscuiteers have a stunning array of wonderful wedding-themed biscuits for you to choose from. And if you’re looking for something really different, they can work with you to create a bespoke collection.
A HUGE thank you goes out to all the suppliers who very generously provided all of the photography, props and styling for the shoot. It couldn’t have been have achieved without them and these guys really do rock when it comes to weddings!
Imagine some of the most decadent, luxurious and lavish jewellery and accessories on the planet. Then imagine those pieces of pretty being photographed by a world-renowned wedding photographer and styled by some of the most in-demand industry professionals in the business.
With make-up by Kaz Fernando, styling by Kate Barbour and hair by Severin Hubert from the Hepburn Collection this is the kind of inspirational eye-candy that makes Rebecca and I literally jump up and down with girly excitement and glee…..
And not only do we get to share the romantic eighteenth century opulence of Marie-Antoinette but also a fresh modern take on incorporating an ice-cream dream of a colour palette into your Big Day with insight from both photographer Julia Boggio and Magpie Vintage’s very own Lisa Harris.
So then folks, may we suggest you take a few moments to sit down, relax, get comfortable and enjoy the show…. who knew Tuesdays could turn out to be such a feast for the eyes?
Lisa Harris – Magpie Vintage: For the Marie Antoinette hair shots we used our Bespoke necklaces which Sev pinned throughout the hair to create a draping soft look. We wanted to show the versatility of our pieces, they can be worn with jeans, a wedding dress and even in the hair!
We teamed with a 1920’s fresh water pearl encrusted ostrich feather for ultimate drama!
Lisa Harris – Magpie Vintage: Our Hollywood collection is a Labyrinth of beautiful rhinestone jewels worked into head bands, necklaces and bracelets. It doesn’t take much to show off the glamour and uniqueness of each piece which can literally be sitting around the studio awaiting complimenting pieces for years until we find the perfect match!
Julia Boggio – The Lowdown. Julia Boggio is well-known for her fun, quirky and colourful wedding photography, as well as her world-famous Vintage Boudoir (TM) photography. She has just been given the You & Your Wedding Bride’s Choice award for 2010 and won Entrepreneur of the Year at the Merton Business Awards.
Julia is also famous for having recreated the dance from Dirty Dancing at her wedding. The resulting You Tube video has had over 8 million views, with Julia and James appearing on Richard & Judy, BBC Breakfast, GMTV, Sunrise TV in Australia and The Oprah Winfrey Show in the US, where Julia danced with Patrick Swayze.
Aside from shooting glamorous weddings, Julia and James run a successful portrait studio in Wimbledon.
Julia Boggio: I leapt at the chance to work at Hengrave Hall when asked by Magpie Vintage to photograph their new range of jewellery. I’d been wanting to do a Marie Antoinette-style shoot for a while, so decided to start the day with this. Of course, I had to ask Severin Hubert to do the hair. I’ve been working with him almost since I started out and knew that he’d be able to handle the complicated updos.
Also, the fabulous Terry Fox is located nearby, so they leant us a wonderful range of dresses that were perfect for the style of shoot.
Julia Boggio: I wanted to get as many images out of the day as possible, so I decided to photograph two completely different sets of models: one as a single model and one as the couple. The blonde model brought her boyfriend along to play groom; he was such a good sport on the day and really got into it, despite me forcing him to play with a pink guitar!!.
There were a lot of different looks needed for make-up, so Kaz Fernando, who I work with on a regular basis and who does the make-up at many of my weddings, came along to tackle the job.
Kate, our trusty stylist, asked Marc Wallace to lend us the suits. We wanted a very summery outdoorsy sort of look and Marc’s colourful suits were ideal for this style. Last but not least, Magpie Vintage, as always, brought an amazing array of their bespoke antique pieces to the shoot.
Afterwards, the lovely people at Hengrave Hall let us all stay the night in one of their gorgeous cottages. I’m not going to lie to you; there was champagne involved….
Lisa Harris – Magpie Vintage: For the outdoorsy fun shots we focused on our Secret garden necklaces which are a host of original vintage finds. With our love of the soft French colour hues, and inspiration from the country garden the pieces are worked together to create a soft English Rose influence with a dash of quirkiness!