Karen Millen

Byre at Inchyra Wedding Venue | The Old Cow Barn in Scotland | Rustic Barn Wedding | Contemporary Decor | Greenery & Pink Florals | Gold Accents | Claudia Rose Carter Photography | http://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/layla-alastair/
Byre at Inchyra Wedding Venue | The Old Cow Barn in Scotland | Rustic Barn Wedding | Contemporary Decor | Greenery & Pink Florals | Gold Accents | Claudia Rose Carter Photography | http://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/layla-alastair/
Byre at Inchyra Wedding Venue | The Old Cow Barn in Scotland | Rustic Barn Wedding | Contemporary Decor | Greenery & Pink Florals | Gold Accents | Claudia Rose Carter Photography | http://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/layla-alastair/
Byre at Inchyra Wedding Venue | The Old Cow Barn in Scotland | Rustic Barn Wedding | Contemporary Decor | Greenery & Pink Florals | Gold Accents | Claudia Rose Carter Photography | http://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/layla-alastair/
Byre at Inchyra Wedding Venue | The Old Cow Barn in Scotland | Rustic Barn Wedding | Contemporary Decor | Greenery & Pink Florals | Gold Accents | Claudia Rose Carter Photography | http://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/layla-alastair/
Wedding Party
Wedding Party
Byre at Inchyra Wedding Venue | The Old Cow Barn in Scotland | Rustic Barn Wedding | Contemporary Decor | Greenery & Pink Florals | Gold Accents | Claudia Rose Carter Photography | http://www.rockmywedding.co.uk/layla-alastair/
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Layla & Alastair

Layla & Alistair’s wedding is achingly hip. Their Scandinavian meets mid-century modern decor courtesy of Lemonbox Studios is exquisite, especially as I am having a moment with geometric shapes and statement ceiling hangings. The florals are equally special, coral peonies enhanced by an abundance of lush green foliage and fancy.

Layla’s choice of gown was apparently very last minute but you would never know, an elegant vintage number that looks literally as it was made for her. Alistair’s choice of bright blue suit doesn’t disappoint either, neither does his rather dashing beard.

Enjoy folks!

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Winnie & Robin

It’s the weekend so we thought we’d fill your hearts with romantic tales , grand gestures and an epic engagement shoot…

Winnie & Robin chose the gorgeous Cotswolds countryside for their engagement shoot with talented Terry Li Photography capturing all the loveliness. It literally couldn’t have be more perfect; the rustic location with roaming animals and plaid shirts, then the quaint grand castle and glamorous attire.

The tranquil village is SO romantic and dreamy and Winnie & Robin are the cutest couple so evidently in love, it just swells the heart.

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A Berkshire Garden Party.

Siobhan and Dave married in June 2011 on what turned out to be a very hot and sunny day. This led to some last minute changes of plan to accomodate the weather conditions. On the plus side, all that light has had a part to play in the creation of this stunning set of photographs from Source Images.

Prepare yourself for mismatched furniture, glassware used as bud vases, dusty pink hues and slim fit navy suits. Our bride Siobhan looks stunning in Pronovias and her Ted Baker shoes are show stoppers.

Let’s join the party.

Local Suppliers

We got married at St Nicolas Church Taplow then had our reception at The White Oak in Cookham. We wanted local venues and suppliers so our wedding was a reflection of the community we lived in. It makes me smile every time someone says they’ve been to dinner at the White Oak. We’ve inspired a few of our friends to pop the question there and then go on to get married there too.

The Only Bride In The World

My dress was a nightmare to find, I must have tried at least 100 dresses on before deciding on the one, it was starting to become a chore and I was worried I’d never love any of them. I decided on a Pronovias dress from a little wedding dress shop in Chepstow Wales. The women made me feel like I was the only bride in the world and the feeling I got from the dress was magical.

The style was simple which I think Dave was surprised about as I normally have to be ‘fashion’ with all my outfits. The dress was strapless with a sweet heart shaped bust, it was ivory in colour and was fitted to the hips and then fish tailed out.

Traditional Security

I knew before I’d picked the dress I’d have a veil, I saw it as a security thing for walking down the isle as I wore it traditionally. It was full length, trimmed with a scalloped edge.

For jewellery I wanted to be myself and wear my much loved Siobhan necklace but my mum presented me with beautiful antique pearls which I loved. Diamond stud earrings and the engagement ring Dave designed for me finished off the look.


During the wedding planning I found out that I am a traditional and superstitious girl at heart. Shoes are what I am known for and I didn’t let the side down! Royal blue peep toes with blue bows on the peep. I searched high a low for blue shoes and put more effort into finding the shoes than the dress or the accessories. They came from Ted Baker and I love them. Jordan did an amazing job picking them out in the photos because he knew they were my pride and joy.

I danced away all night without any pain, but the next day OMG!

A Natural Look

I wanted to be natural on my wedding day, I went for simple and softly swept back hair, dewy skin and rose cheeks. I think this was for the best as the day was so sunny and hot – heavy make up wouldn’t of been appropriate. Dave always prefers when I go for a more natural look and I was conscious that when he turned round to meet me at the aisle that he would think I was beautiful and that he was making the right choice in marrying me 🙂

I did my own make up as I am lucky enough to have a make artist mum and have always dabbled in make up and all girly things.

Fleurs de la Maison

I wanted beautiful summer aromas to be the first thing my guests picked up on so went for my favourite freesias. As the reception was in a country style restaurant I wanted the decoration to be in keeping with the surroundings which is why we said no to table cloths and clinical chair covers and went with mismatch furniture and crystal cut glasses to bounce the candle light off.

Sherry, champagne flutes and other ornate drinking glasses held white and hypnosis pink roses and the freesias. No two tables were decorated the same. The guys at Fleurs de la Maison in Cookham did an amazing job delivering the relaxed and informal brief we gave them. It helped that they were locals of the White Oak and really reflected the personality of both us and the venue.

Navy And Pink

The bridesmaid wore silk knee length Karen Millen dresses, I wanted to make sure they looked elegant and grown up and that the dresses were comfortable enough and fashionable enough to party hard. Hopefully they’ll wear them again. Deciding on knee length was another blessing in disguise due to the amazing sunshine we were blessed with.

The groomsmen wore hired suits – a gift from Dave’s fantastic brother and best man. The navy and pink came from the wedding invite – a very talented friend of mine designed them for us and it all started from there.


We went for navy 3 piece slim fit suits instead of the classic morning suits. I was conscious that because we had chosen an informal venue we should reflect that in all the extras. All the boys blew me away on the day – but I have never seen Dave look as handsome as when I saw him at the alter. It’s meant to be the bride’s big moment but he looked Hollywood.

Every Day Lives And Locations

Both Dave and I hate having our photo taken and made the decision early on that we wanted a relaxed and intimate wedding so we wouldn’t have a photographer. We were planning on recruiting a few family members to snap candid moments throughout the day. This didn’t go down well with everyone who we causally mentioned it to and so reluctantly we decided to get a professional. It was a good friend of mine who got married a few weeks after us that recommended Jordan from Source Images.

We loved the fact that weddings were something he did outside of this travel and journalist photography and there was one shot in his portfolio which made us say yes straight away – the groom and his best man, cigars and sunnies. At that moment we knew he was the best man for the job and would capture the day as it unveiled its self – rather than taking us away from our guests for the standard wedding shots!

After a beer with Jordan at the White Oak we knew we were making the right choice! The beautiful lighting in our wedding pictures came as a result of it being too hot and sunny to take photographs after the church service. Jordan waited until after dinner so we went out as the sun was setting to have all our pictures in Cookham’s streets and fields (and even in someones front garden). I love that our photos show the countryside and our everyday lives and locations in a very special way. I can’t tell you how many compliments we’ve had over the Cookham bridge shot and the antique chairs.

The Uncut Cake

The cake wasn’t something we were overly worried about so we went to M&S and got a tasty chocolate covered sponge. My roots are Irish and I always remember my family telling me that if everyone at your wedding has a piece of the cake then you’ll have a long and happy marriage. With this in mind I totally ruled out fruit cake and played the percentage odds on that everyone likes sponge. Every little bit of good luck helps!

We totally forgot to cut the cake and it was only at 10pm when we were doing shots at the bar with family and friends that the restaurant manager put the cake in front of us for cutting.

Causing A Stir

The White Oak doesn’t cater for weddings as its main business and the space wasn’t suitable for a band. We had a DJ who played every song requested and we danced well into the early hours of the morning. As it was such a hot day all the windows were open and as it got dark we had the locals of Cookham walking past the party, looking into the windows and wishing us luck.

Last Chance

Our first dance was to Paolo Nutini Last chance, Dave hates dancing so gave strict instructions to the groomsmen to join in after a minute or so. The song has a sad meaning but I loved it because the words summed up how much I missed and longed to be with Dave when we had a bit of a break after university.

Childhood Memories

I grew up in Wales and wanted to bring in elements of my childhood, so we picked Bread of Heaven as one of the hymns in church. For those who don’t know it’s a classic Welsh rugby song and made me feel at home. The favours were also a flash from our childhoods – personalised bags of haribo!

We were worried about everyone filling up before the meal but once the food was served the haribo didn’t get a look in. We gave our guests a choice of 3 starters, mains and deserts, which they selected when returning their R.S.V.P – a sure fire way to ensure that you get 100% of your invites back before the deadline. Fish and Chips, Pork Belly and Steak were all on offer.

Garden Party Vibe

Dave and I tried to keep the whole wedding informal and relaxed. We had handmade signs asking our guests to ‘join Siobhan & Dave for a party’. With only 75 guests for the reception we made sure we sat and talked with all of our guests. Everyone who made up our lives was there to share our day. We didn’t have standard sized tables so they ranged from a table for 4 to 6 and even 11. Our top table was opened up to grandparents and second mums. The garden was filled with dressed trees and crisp white bunting which captured the garden party vibe we longed for.

A Goovy Kind of Love

A family friend played the piano while we signed the register – hits from The Beatles, Elton John and the classic A Goovy Kind of Love by Phil Collins. Our wedding was a real family and friends affair, so much so that our MC (a close university friend of mine and Dave’s oldest school friend) turned up in the red tails, kane and cravat – much to our surprise and delight. We knew all about the little surprises the guests could expect but this was something we were as elated by.

White London Cabs

I was adamant that an informal venue and setting would not sit comfortably with big and imposing classic cars like Bentleys and Rollers – these are lovely but wouldn’t have been right! We went for white London cabs to take dad and I, mum and the bridesmaids to church. They looked fantastic against the sunshine and green field back drop. The driver even came with his cabbies badge.

All these small elements complimented the day, I tried to avoid a ‘theme’ as such but the more I avoided it the more the theme became apparent – classic English Garden Party!

Step Back And Watch

The best piece of advice I can offer is to invest in good food, photography, booze and music!! These are the elements that your guests will enjoy most, happy guests = fun times and amazing memories!

Your wedding should reflect your and your partners personalities, don’t let anyone convince you that your way is the wrong way. Spare five minutes on the day to step back and watch everyone celebrate you and your partners big day and success, it’s the best feeling to know that everyone is there for you.

It’s the one day in your life that you won’t need to have a phone, a watch or money in your pocket!

Photographer – Source Images

Dress – Pronovias

Shoes – Ted Baker

Blooms – Fleurs de la Maison

Bridesmaid Dresses – Karen Millen

Thanks to Siobhan and Dave for letting us have a peek at their amazing garden party.

A little while ago Jordan from Source Images wrote a post for us tackling the issue of the group shot and how to keep them fresh and interesting, you can read the article here. And as you can see his is a master of the art form.

A great balance of clever composition, an unusal environment and a subtle injection of humour has made the collection of shots taken on the driveway on Siobhan and Dave’s big day completely priceless.


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The M.O.B. Fash Flash

Wedding Season is fast approaching now and if any of you are in remotely the same situation that was in 2 years ago (10 weeks to go and my mum running about like a headless chicken still having NOTHING TO WEAR!) You’d have thought she was getting married!

Joking aside it’s a massive deal for most Mums, finding something to wear on such an important day. I know my usually super confident Mum developed all sorts of insecurities about choosing the right item, feeling the pressure of being the MOB, worrying about her (self perceived and completely not a problem) body hang-ups, not wanting to look too under dressed/over dressed/mutton dressed as lamb… it was quite an ordeal. And of course I wanted her to look hands down fabulous whilst feeling totally comfortable and able to enjoy the day.

So today I’m doing a little round up of gorgeousness I’ve seen in the shops as spring designs (and colours) flood in. Do send this along to any internet savvy Mums out there, or let it guide your shopping trips, I hope it takes just a little bit of the stress out of it and pressure off!


Right on trend florals are everywhere this season with Milly leading the way… Hayley (pink) floral print dress,Milly – Net a Porter
Erdem at Net a Porter. For something a little more graphic and modern, in a shape that could either be bold or forgiving (consider cinching the waist with a belt) how about thisPeony Print dress, from Jaeger? Want real designer kudos or just a timeless treat? No-one does floral like Erdem.


This Hepburn Silk mix Dress from LK Bennett doesn’t look much in the shot above but in the cloth it’s a beautiful sheeny golden oyster colour with mesh top insert making a classic style totally modern. As with All LK Bennett designs the length is always totally MOB appropriate too. They also have a lace offering in the Lexi Dress, a popular taupe colour with some coverage in the chest area without looking matronly. Going for Grey? How about his stylish Grey Temperley London Dress – Net a Porter with detailed embellishment plus shoulder coverage.


With bold brights being so hot right now on the catwalk, I’m living in hope that we see more of this trend on Maids. I have always thought it was nice to have the MOB toning with the Maids and bridal party, not only does it look good, but my Mum is also like my best friend so it seemed only right to include her like this. My maids wore Raspberry pink and Mum wore a cream Jaeger dress with purple and lime green pattern, plus purple accessories which blended perfectly.

Try these brights to make your Mum stand out in style: Green Pleated Silk Dress, Burberry at Net a Porter,
Tangerine Shift with back Bow detail (back view shown) Hobbs and Purple floral Shift, Coast.

The Arm Saviours…

Every woman has their body hang-ups but as Mums get older the biggest ones seem to be bingo bettys. As well as encouraging your mum to join you in the gym or just get those upper arms toned with a few Bingo Betty exercises at home and some hand weights, an arm cover up might be the solution to her worries.

All of the dresses featured today have been chosen to be age appropriate and the perfect length whilst making Mum feel a million dollars but these beauties also have the added bonus of arm coverage. I’m loving these floral brights from Viyella. The high street wins out with this French Connection Coral Dare to Dream Dress number, which would look great with a fabulous belt and matching shoes/bag to make it more classic. Don’t mind your mum wearing white? It might even be fate if you’re choosing to put your maids in pale tones too, this is a decidedly modern take on the wrap dress for a super chic MOB, by Karen Millen.

Hobbs Heaven

One store I was really impressed with when browsing for this post was Hobbs, so much so, it gets a mention all of it’s own.

There’s a lovely selection of jackets and dresses in flattering cuts, varying styles and bold brights. Definitely don’t miss it off your shopping list for a selection of modern and stylish occasion wear.

Advice to save your Sanity!

Look for styles that make your Mum feel comfortable.

This might be the first time she’s worn something for such a big occasion in several years so be kind, whilst encouraging her to try new things.

Don’t stick with ‘occasion wear brands’ – try the high street and even your own favourite shops, just look for appropriate lengths and shapes.

Don’t forget accessories. Make sure she’s carrying a fabulous bag for those tissues, rocking some stand out heels and consider statement jewellery to vamp up a simple shift.

When it comes to head gear anything goes. Lots of Mums want to wear a hat but fascinators, combs or even jewelled headbands or florals when done right can be just as effective.

So what is your Mum wearing or have you any must stop shops to add to the list above?

Yours Truly,


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Vintage by Verity, a DIY Wedding… Part 1

Today we have a very special wedding from a Rock My Wedding reader, Verity. Verity told us how much she loved RMW and used it in her planning and we just had to share all the fabulous details she packed into their day that she found on these very pages – makes us feel all warm and fuzzy 🙂

Dean and I got married on Saturday 25th September 2010. The ceremony took place at 2.30pm at our local village church St. Marys and All Saints, Whalley. This was followed by a wedding reception for 100 guests at Bashall Barn, where we also had an evening party for 130 guests.

Fancy not Fussy

My dress was by Benjamin Roberts, design 1033 from his vintage collection. Before I went dress shopping I’d looked for styles online and kept coming back to Benjamin Roberts as I just thought the design were different, without being overly fancy (I’m not big on fuss!).

I found trying on wedding dresses a very weird experience indeed! My dress sense in general is usually fairly quirky, and I had every intention of doing something different, either in colour or shape or fabric, but as soon as I started trying them on, all I could think of was “What will Dean want to see me in?” It was then that I knew it would have to be something fairly traditional (for Dean) and something stylish and unfussy (for me).

I bought the dress from Emma Hartley Bridal in Colne, Lancashire. I loved it for the stylishness, the wonderfully simple and luxurious soft taffeta, the gorgeous detailing of the crystals and pearls, and last but not least the internal corset which gave me the most amazing shape on the day!

Birdcage Beauty

Even though our wedding didn’t really have a theme, there were lots of vintage elements to the day, and Dean and I are obsessed with art deco furniture and paintings, so I wanted to have a vintage look with my hair and jewellery. Birdcage veils have always appealed to me but there are pretty hard to come by – most dress shops I visited didn’t stock them. In the end I turned to Etsy and found there were loads of lovely handmade veils to choose from. Mine was called Lolita from Velvet Owl and was an ivory net with a silk Gardenia which attached with a pin.

Jewellery-wise, again I wanted something simple and elegant. My dress had some gorgeous pearl and crystal detailing at the top, so I wanted something to match. My pearl and crystal necklace was called Opulent Heirloom by Katzi London. I also wore some pearl studs which were my ‘something borrowed’ from my Auntie Glenys.

Well, how could I resist? As soon as I saw a lovely bride on RMW wearing Ms. Westwood’s Lady Dragon Hearts, there really was no other choice for me – I simply had to have them! I tried some on in the Vivienne Westwood boutique in the Trafford Centre, but unfortunately the colour I wanted was no longer in stock. Luckily, I found a pair on ebay – never worn – I was so excited when they came, that I even showed a few of my girlfriends, despite me wanting to keep everything a secret. The oohs and aahs just confirmed what a great choice they were and everyone on the day commented on them.

The best thing about my shoes is that they are totally wearable after your wedding. They look just as stunning with a pair of jeans as they do with the most important dress of your life! Love them.

Relaxing with the Regulars

I was so lucky when it came to hair and make-up. My regular hairdresser (and good friend) Lois Pickup is also a freelance hair and makeup stylist for magazine shoots so she has an abundance of style, talent and the appropriate equipment to create the perfect look for me. It meant that everything could be done at home, so we had a lovely relaxed morning on the day of the wedding.

We had a few trials and knew the general look we wanted – soft, romantic tones for the face; dramatic eyes, and a forties up-do, but in true girly fashion, we were still making final tweaks to the hairstyle at midnight the night before the wedding!

Lois was busy from 6.30am getting us all looking stunning and then she had literally minutes to do her own hair and make-up before racing to the church to join us as our guest. I can’t thank her enough, though; the final result was truly amazing.

Bridesmaids in Blush

My bridesmaids were my very gorgeous (and oh so skinny!) cousins, Natasha and Olivia. We spent a long and tiring day shopping for their dresses, a task which if I’m honest I thought would take a lot less time than it did. It ended without joy, but then a few days later Olivia tried on a dress in Karen Millen as a potential prom outfit (yes, she is that young!). We went back en masse and the deal was done. The dresses were exquisite and the matching shoes were to die for – all my friends have been asking about them ever since the wedding.

And a Groom in Grey

So, with the bridesmaid dresses sorted, we now had a colour scheme. Our flower girl Eleanor had a dress from Debenhams which matched the bridesmaids perfectly and the boys (who didn’t much fancy anything pink) went for a complementary grey.

Dean had a few suit wobbles in the week leading up to the wedding. I think he wished he had gone for something a bit different from the ushers and best man, but he needn’t have worried. They all looked very handsome in their Lingfield morning suits from Moss Bros and Dean in particular just looked lovely. He accessorised with ultra cool black Chatterbox Brogue from Ask The Missus, Paul Smith heart cufflinks and stripy Paul Smith socks (with secret matching pants). Who said it was just girls who were shoe mad? My man has more pairs than I do!

Vintage style Floral fancies

My future sister-in-law Nicolla Moran used to be a florist and is an über-creative lady so I knew my flowers would be fabulous. She didn’t let me down. They oozed romance and the table decorations had a vintage twist as she’d used teacups and biscuit tins (that we’d all been collecting from charity shops for months) instead of vases. It had a wonderful effect.

I literally cried when she presented me with my bouquet at the wedding rehearsal the night before. It was so stunning and the colours just hit you. We’d decided on a mix of Victorian lilac tea roses and Juliet peach David Austin roses (the lovely papery peach coloured ones which I adore). This was then supplemented with lisianthus and alstroemeria.

Chic eh?

Wait until you see the DIY style in Part 2.

Yours Truly,