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Ballet: The Inspiration.

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If you stopped by the blog on Friday last week folks you can’t fail to have noticed Charlotte’s sneaky peek of this week’s theme; The Ballet.

Whilst the Blog Queen herself will reveal all tomorrow afternoon – the RMW editorial shoot that is, she’s not getting her kit off – I’ll be sharing the inspiration behind said theme in this afternoon’s post where we’ll cover everything from frivolous fashion, luxurious decor, sweet treats and the most beautiful hair and make-up ideas that you’ve clapped eyes on for a long time.

As a team we often spend large amounts of time discussing wedding trends and big day inspiration…yes even Adam too. We talk about what makes you tick, the next big thing on the wedding horizon, themes we love, colour schemes that make us swoon and even those trends that may have dropped off the radar.

One such theme is the ultra romantic, pink infused ballet affair so beloved of little girls with pillowcase veils over their heads. Somehow as we’ve aged, this candy coloured dream has fallen by the wayside in favour of rustic soirees, or hip city dos and this makes us sad. Gone are the dreams of the super feminine big day, dusted in pink complete with bows and satin and voluminous dresses and all-rose bouquets.

Or so you thought.

You see folks, garnered by the RMW spirit we’re determined to bring it BACK. Just like the once out of favour peach colour schemes, we want to show you how girly pink wedding themes can be cool again.

Let’s see what you think.

Corps de Ballet

Dance Of The Sugarplum Fairy

So named…erm because it’s really blinking obvious right. Sugar, sweet treats and confectionery delights, it’s all there folks.

Granted most ballerinas are probably not indulging their sweet tooth on a daily basis but given that classical ballet has its origins in the patisserie centre of the world (France) it seemed daft not to include some cakey treats in the editorial shoot.

Dance Of The Sugarplum Fairy

And it’s all about the detail this time lovelies…detail and miniatures. Think cutesy details, ruffles, intricate piping and romantic shapes. We fell head over heels for hearts, for rose-infused flavours, for dustings of icing sugar and iced petals.

And then there was the beautiful display of such delights, on glass cakestands, within sugary coated boxes, on golden plates, all piled on top of one another. There’s something to be said for beauty in numbers…wouldn’t you agree?

A Rose By Any Other Name

If there’s any single flower that’s associated with ballet or indeed the stage then it is the beautiful Rose. Just think oodles of all those blousey blooms being thrown at beautiful ballerinas at the end of the night in appreciation of their talents.

There’s something timeless about the Rose, its unrelenting beauty, its womanly charms and sophisticated elegance. This is a bloom that will always take centre-stage.

From the get-go, we were determined to use the flower in all of our floral associated styling – from the table centrepieces to the bouquets and even the smaller prop related scenes too. Quantity was key, volume the watchword; it was less about the foliage and more about the flower itself.

A Rose By Any Other Name

Big, blousy, full-headed blooms in pinks, creams, off-whites, caramels, blushes, peaches with maybe even a splash of yellow here and there. Our preference was for roses of the older varieties with amazing scents like the O’Hara. We chose to follow two different directions when it came to our bouquets too – one that fitted with the more traditional ballet look and then another that was less structured, more ethereal. 

We can’t wait to show you the results…

See You At The Make-up Barre

Whilst I don’t want to give too much away at this point I will say that the traditional ballet bun was definitely a must have for Charlotte and I – you may even have seen our sneaky peek of our ballerina on both of our Instagram walls – see here and here. In fact we love the ballerina topknot so much that we always squeal in glee when we spot a bride that chooses an updo for her big day.

See You At The Make-up Barre

The beauty of the stage and actually for a bride on her big day is that all the normal rules can be thrown out of the window. If you want glitter on your eyelids, a metallic catflick or the longest of (fake) eyelashes, nine times out of ten you can get away with it. Perhaps not so much with the smokey tulle and net creation near the bottom here but you catch my drift.

Exquisite hair and eyes ‘looks’ were a particular focus for us in this piece of editorial and much like the classical ballet of Swan Lake there was most definitely a White Swan/ Black swan split.

Stay tuned.

Set For The Stage

Perhaps my favourite part of any editorial shoot apart from the florals (never going to give up that wannabe florist ghost) is the prop and tablescape styling. Whereas Charlotte is the fashion, hair, make-up queen, I revel in decor detail. Give me a table and some linen and some utensils and I’m as happy as a pig in mud.

I’m not going to go into detail…after all I cover the inspiration for the tablescape styling in tomorrow’s post but what I will say is that there are stripes, and lots of shimmering gold details and pink glass and cut crystal. There are blooms a-dozen and rose petals and the sweetest pieces of stationery DIY that are as easy as pie for you lovelies to download and recreate.

And yes there are pointe shoes and ribbon and so much pretty that your heart aches with the beauty of it all.

Set For The Stage

So then are you excited? Have we whetted your tastebuds?

Can you wait until tomorrow afternoon?

I’m not sure we can…

All my love Lolly xxx

P.S. You know that image of the model in the frothy delicious pink dress by the sink at the very top of the post there? Well that was the very first image I ever ripped out of a magazine for my wedding inspiration. I think I was thirteen years old…They say that it never leaves you.

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Aisle Style.

Aisle Style

Last week I took some time off.

I didn’t jet anywhere special, instead the boy and I road-tripped around the country spending time with loved ones and each other. We swam in a lake and lazed on a (manmade) beach in the Cotswolds, visited the truly immense metropolis that is Liverpool (new favourite city), watched cricket in Edgbaston and lunched with friends in town. (You can follow my adventures on Instagram here.)

It was on one of these cross-country trips that I came across one of the most beautiful floral archways around the porch of a dinky country church…think Kate Moss’s own wedding nuptials and you get the idea. Whilst I didn’t venture inside said church, it did get me thinking about processions and arrivals and beginnings and aisles.

For it’s been a while since we last looked at some aisle style inspiration hasn’t it.

I for one can’t get enough of sublime aisle decor…perhaps because aside from the invitation and any external touches that may have been added to the outside of the ceremony venue, this is really the first tangible encounter with the wedding day.

This is the moment where the guest really gets to see and feel the culmination of all those months of hard work and planning, where they can experience all the wonderful details that make your day so ‘you’.

So in testament to this, I’ve pulled together some of my favourite pieces of inspiration doing the rounds at the moment.

Let me know which is your favourite…

Chic Chuppahs

I’ve not been lucky enough to attend a Jewish wedding but I’ve long admired the subtle elegance of the Chuppah from afar. For those of you unfamiliar with the Chuppah, its meaning is literally, “canopy” or “covering” and is supported by four poles under which a Jewish couple stand during their ceremony.

Regardless of your beliefs, you can’t fail to fall hook, line and sinker for the symbolism of the chuppah. Put simply it represents the home that the couple will build together and if that isn’t a romantic gesture then I don’t know what is.

Whilst you might not be Jewish there’s no reason why you can’t take inspiration from this collection of chic chuppahs below.

Chic Chuppahs

If simplicity is your watchword, why not drape the merest whisper of silk or lace or even chiffon from silver birch supports or twists of willow. Imbue the canopy with tradition by utilising fabric that is important to your family in some way – be it a family tartan or a piece of exquisite lace that’s been handed down through the generations. If you’re looking for an organic touch then ask your florist to entwine foliage in and around the supports overhead. I particularly love the idea of using Olive branches as a representation of peace and love.

Perhaps super luxe is more your thing…if so then it’s all about creating volume through swathes of fabric and oodles of blooms. Don’t be afraid to use colour either to create impact – I love the mossy green palette of the Chuppah at the top here that’s been adorned with cascades of roses. Finish with a chandelier suspended overhead for the final touch.

Ravishing Row Markers

Perhaps the easiest way to style your aisle and the kindest on the pocket too is to opt for row markers, so called because they’re placed at the end of every other row or pew. If you’re still confused think supersized pew ends and you’re there.

We’ve noticed the appearance of two trends this year – one that takes a classic approach with an abundance of traditional blooms and the other that follows a more organic, rustic path that wouldn’t look amiss at an Autumn wedding.

Both trends have their respective benefits; I love the ultra feminine vibe that the classic approach evokes plus the scent from these blooms would perfume your venue wonderfully. If you’re opting for something akin to these arrangements of roses on top of the wooden columns then it’s worth considering using these as your table centerpieces also. Just let your florist and venue know beforehand so that the necessary maneuvers can be made.

Ravishing Row Markers

The rustic path has its charms too; for one it’s easy to create yourself perfect for the crafty brides and grooms out there. Take the log stump chargers for example which can be sourced for pennies or even for free if you’re in the right place at the right time, add some plain hurricane lamps and candles, adorn with fallen leaves or other foliage and you’ve got yourself some beautiful wedding decor at the fraction of the cost.

If you’re looking for something a little bit different try thinking about the placement of your seating for your guests. I love the angled rather than forward facing positioning of these benches in the middle here which provide the perfect view of both the bride coming down the aisle as well as the ceremony itself.

Awesome Backdrops

And then there’s those awesome backdrops, the grand finale if you will, the dressed stage for the drama of your ceremony.

Literally anything goes here.

Want a huge sign with your names on? You can have it. What about a wrought iron arch decked in blooms? Yep you can have that too. This is where your imagination goes into overdrive.

Granted many of the backdrops shown here are staged in the great outdoors but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get creative if you’re marrying indoors. The first port of call is to ask your venue what its limitations are. Essentially how far can you go so to speak. It’s also worth taking into consideration where you’re choosing to get married and what the room will be used for afterwards. For example will your ceremony be taking place in the same room as your drinks reception or your wedding breakfast? If so can your ‘awesome backdrop’ be moved easily or integrated into the wider wedding decor without getting in the way? Perhaps it could be used as a photobooth in the evening festivities…

Awesome Backdrops

If you asked me to choose my favourite backdrop out of this immense collection shown here then it would easily be the third image on the left. I love the combination of the ruffled off-white fabric against the vibrant greens of the florals and foliage. I also adore the fact that the foliage has been pinned asymmetrically; it feels raw and organic and natural…pretty much like love then.

Let your imagination run wild. Think about using fabric in weird and wonderful ways, draped from the ceiling in strips of colour, or opt for garlanded blooms suspended in loops and swirls. I’ve seen hundreds of connected pinwheels used to great effect, supersized acrylic letters entwined in fairy lights and hundreds and hundreds of candles of different sizes lit up along the aisle and along the altar. Beautiful doesn’t even begin to cover it.

So are you a ‘chic chuppah’ girly or an ‘awesome backdrop’ gal? Perhaps you’re something else entirely…care to share?

We want to know what floats your boat so why not drop us a line in the comments box below.

And are any of you lovelies jetting off anywhere soon or are you saving it for the honeymoon?

Do you find that time away from the office helps you think and gets those creative juices flowing again? I know I do.

All my love Lolly xxx

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Left Of Centre.

Wedding Centrepieces Table Settings Inspiration

Blimey.

It’s been a while since I last shared some floral inspiration with you gorgeous lot, particularly of the table centrepiece variety. So it seemed right, fitting even, to share some flowery delights with you given that it’s summer.

Or at least it’s supposed to be. At least with this plethora of gorgeous blooms we can pretend that summer is actually here instead of staring pitifully out of the window at yet another downpour.

Just how important to you lovelies are the florals at a wedding – be it your own or one you’ve attended as a guest? From a personal perspective, big day blooms are a real highlight and a table doesn’t quite seem complete without a floral centrepiece sitting prettily amongst the place settings. I wonder why that is…

And so I couldn’t resist peddling my current favourite styles and inspiration this afternoon in the hope that some of you will opt for said trends on your big day.

Please say you will…

Smelling Of Roses

I love roses. Particularly the old garden varieties that are so intoxicating that you can literally get drunk on their heady perfume. In fact I love them so much that I’d choose them over peonies any day.

I know…controversial!

I’ve noticed, of late, a swing back to rose-based centrepieces which have been rejected in recent years in favour of less traditional blooms such as tulips, daffodils, dahlias and hydrangea and it’s so easy to see why.

Perfect for the summer bride who wants an extra dose of romance, I love how rosy centrepieces can look both traditional or ultra modern depending on how they’re styled and what containers are used.

Roses Wedding Centerpieces Centrepieces Romantic

If you’re searching for a romantic, otherworldly, midsummer night’s dream vibe then Damasks are your man, whereas Centifolias or ‘Provence Roses’ are just the ticket for ultra glamorous affairs.

Think about the colour palettes that you’re using too. Peachy pink hues compliment those nuptials held in the great outdoors from Summer through to Autumn whereas paler shades look fantastic in modern settings at colder times of the year.

Message In A Bottle

Milk bottles, medicine bottles, old jam jars and even beer bottles. This type of arrangement exudes style whilst being super kind on the pocket too!

Whilst combinations of different sized bottles have been popular for the last couple of years or so, it’s blue and green bottles – particularly old medicine and tonic bottles – that are experiencing a bit of a renaissance at the moment and it’s easy to see why. Their muted tones are the perfect backdrop for soft blooms and lush foliage making them pop against them.

Bottle Wedding Centrepiece Table Centerpiece Green Blue Organic Rustic

Simplicity is key to this look – single flower heads or branches and foliage look exquisite popped into a bottle or two. Remember to create interest by using vessels of different shapes and heights and then collate them together to create a single centrepiece. Don’t be afraid to use a restricted colour palette – says shades of blush or of greens as this only helps to create a more intense display.

Keep things loose and organic and don’t be afraid to be unconventional. I adore the fern fronds in the clear bottles in the middle of this board; elegant and chic you can guarantee that this particular arrangement won’t have broken the bank.

From The Garden

These arrangements are all about the organic, anything goes approach. Using greater amounts of foliage than the other styles and fewer blooms, these centrepieces are no less beautiful and perfect for romantic summertime nuptials.

Queen Anne’s Lace, Lamb’s Ear, trailing herbs such as Thyme and Rosemary, Limelight Hydrangea, Clematis, Wallflowers and Gardenias, Olive leaves, Mint and Poppies are just some of the gorgeous plants that suit this style perfectly.

Organic Wedding Centrepiece Table Centerpiece Wild Unruly Natural

‘From The Garden’ arrangements tend to be fairly substantial in size – it’s all about building one centrepiece up and out rather than displaying multiple smaller arrangements. Creating a sense of height is the key to this look, however it’s worth being conscious of about how you position these centrepieces on your tables for fear of blocking guests’ lines of sight.

Lastly I’d suggest paying attention to the vessels in which you’re placing your wild and unruly blooms. This style calls for vases with history and character – think trophy cups, antique urns, mercuried glass and textured porcelain and you’re onto a winner.

The Unexpected

And then there’s the unexpected. Think unusual containers and captivating vessels, natural elements and splashes of gold, even centrepieces that dress the entire length of the table and flow down the sides.

These are arrangements with the wow factor.

If you’ve decided to channel a particular theme on your big day then this style is for you. Accessorising your table settings with centrepieces that reflect your overall concept is both effective and savvy and caters for all tastes and budgets too.

Having a coastal beachside theme? Why not replace traditional florals with vases of beautifully coloured shells, arrangements of driftwood or even perfect pieces of coral. I love how this arrangement at the top also incorporates candles for the softest of illumination.

Unusual Wedding Centrepiece Table Centerpiece Pumpkins Succulents Coral Coastal

t’s worth thinking outside the box about seasonality too; for example groupings of gourds and pumpkins or spray-painted gilt leaves are perfect for Autumn weddings. Equally, I love couples who utilise everyday objects in different ways – the succulents planted in these silverplated candlesticks not only look fresh and vibrant but double up as the sweetest favours and the watering can centrepiece is simply genius.

I’ve yet to attend a wedding that has trailing foliage down the centre of the tables but lovelies this is on my wishlist for sure!

So does ‘Smelling Of Roses’ float your boat or are you more of a ‘From The Garden’ kind of gal?

Whilst roses tug at my heartstrings my inner magpie can’t help but be captivated by the glass beakers full of oversized sequins at the bottom here. Just perfect for New Year’s Eve festivities don’t you think?

Perhaps you’ve chosen not to have any florals at all, what will you be opting for instead? I have to say that the coral and candlelit creation near the bottom here has my heart aflutter. What do you think?

And I’d love to hear more about your big day themes. Anyone care to share?

All my love Lolly xxx

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Crowning Glory.

Crowning Glory

There’s something about this time of year that makes me seek out a whole new look – a kind of spring clean on the fashion and beauty front so to speak.

Be it a wardrobe sort-out, a spree at the Chanel make-up counter or a new haircut, you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll be participating in a full on hair and beauty make-over as soon as the clocks have gone forward.

And so with the return of blue skies and sunshine and the feeling of warmth on your face (I know folks, Spring might actually be here!) I have no greater pleasure in sharing the latest (and hottest!) round of glorious inspiration for your big day bonce.

Hell, why even wait? Why not try out some of these chic looks in the run-up to your nuptials – at your hen for example or even down the pub with friends.

Which one will be your favourite?

Chic Chignons

Much like the popular return to more traditional wedding dress shapes and styles à la K-Mid,we’re seeing more and more brides revisiting classic hairstyles for their big day too…albeit with a 21st century twist.

Top knots were huge last year and whilst they’re still in vogue, the lower simplistic chignon is the updo making waves right now.

Chic Chignons Wedding Hair Inspiration

The key to such a sophisticated hairstyle is to keep things sleek and smooth with the chignon finishing at the same level as the nape of the neck. Avoid integrating a parting into the styling of this look for a truly modern feel – if you find you need to include one however keeping it to one side still looks utterly chic.

Remember to keep things soft rather than pulling it back into something restricting and I promise you’ll look like a modern day ballerina. Lastly, for added interest try braiding your hair before pinning it into the chignon style – this is particularly flattering for those of you with finer hair as it adds the illusion of thickness.

Hang Loose

I was a bride who hung loose. Ummm…although the reality isn’t as rude as that statement sounds…

No ladies, we’re talking about locks left to cascade down your back as nature intended. Granted this particular look is more suited to those with longer hair but there’s no reason why those of you with mid-length or short hair can’t emulate this look either.

There’s something truly feminine about a bride with her hair down, like a medieval maiden or Robin Hood and his Marian. If anything though, this particular style is really very accommodating – providing your hair is in good condition. Make sure you get your mane snipped regularly in the run up to your big day so you can be sure that it’s in tip-top shape.

Hang Loose Wedding Hair Long Inspiration

Essentially it’s worth working with your natural hair state rather than against it – I finally accepted my curly headed state on my big day albeit brushed out slightly for a sense of volume.

If you’re nervous about your bonce appearing too flat then I’d recommend creating volume at the crown – if you’re blessed with thick luscious locks I envy you completely. Lastly if you’re keen to add a bit of interest to your flowing locks, why not add a simple headband or loosely braid your hair into a fishtail plait. Either way you can add or remove throughout the day for a different look.

Short And Sweet

A platinum pixie-cropped bride to be visited our pop-up shop in London recently and Team RMW promptly fell in love with her. She looked absolutely exquisite in our Boudica Double Headband and I was secretly more than a little bit envious that she didn’t feel the pressure to grow her hair for her wedding day.

And so I just had to include some short-haired inspiration for all of you cropped beauties.

Short and Sweet Wedding Hair Inspiration

Statement headpieces look brilliant on brides with cropped locks. Intricate headbands, floral crowns and carefully placed side combs are given the space to do their thing without interruption. Think about wearing something that reflects either the tones or material of your dress to bring the whole of your outfit together.

If you’re an edgier bride who’s keen to avoid looking overly ‘pretty’ why not punk it up instead. I love the editorial vibe that this model at the top is emanating here fresh straight off the catwalks yet it’s completely translatable to bridal too.

There’s no reason why you can’t have the illusion of an updo either unless you’re sporting a super short do that is. Pin and twist shorter sections in on themselves like in some of these pictures here for a more delicate ethereal look. Finish the look off with a beautiful necklace or two – after all you wouldn’t want your neck to get cold would you.

Embellished

This last collection of inspiration is all about embellishing your bonce.

We’re talking florals, precious headpieces, ribbons, grips and strategically placed pieces of jewellery. This is for the bride who isn’t afraid to shy away from the drama.

For 2013, floral crowns have given way slightly to different floral arrangements in hair – from small clusters of blooms around a half topknot like this peony and rose combination near the bottom here or swathes of flowers scattered across the back of the crown.

We’re also seeing floral inspiration in headpieces too – in a more concrete form. Be it delicate garlands of gold or supersized glitzy blooms, I just love a bride that integrates the natural element into her wider wedding outfit aside from her bouquet. If you’re going down this route then I’d suggest that you choose pieces that compliment your dress i.e glitzy pieces for sparkly dresses and more sedate headbands for simpler gowns.

Embellished Wedding Hairpiece Inspiration

Perhaps my favourite embellishment is the pinned lace caressing the head of this model at the top here. Elegant yet fashion forward at the same time, I mean just how perfect is this look – particularly for those of you wearing lace on your wedding day. I just wish I’d had the forethought to do this at my own nuptials.

If you’ve fallen in love with this look too then it’s worth asking your dress designer for a piece of material from which your gown is made to pin into your chignon. This brings a whole new meaning to the word dressed from head to toe in lace. Utterly gorgeous!

So which of the ‘do’s’ will you be choosing for your big day?

I so would have opted for the low chignon if I wasn’t the owner of an oddly shaped head – capuchin monkey anyone…

That said I particularly love the layered kirby grip look…it’s like art deco and fashionista all rolled into one. In fact I might just try this down the pub tonight…who’s with me?

All my love Lolly xxx

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A Raspberry Romance.

Red Wedding Theme Inspiration

Much like the Purple Rain inspiration post we showcased a couple of weeks back, red themed weddings seemed, up until recently, to have fallen out of favour with you lovely lot.

And it’s a blinking shame, because approached in the right way an all-red colour scheme can look nothing short of spectacular. And you needn’t be marrying near Valentine’s nor Christmas to utilise such a vibrant palette either.

In actual fact, using cherry and berry hues in your wedding decor is fresh, exhilarating and invigorating; there’s nothing quite like a bold colour statement to say the party starts here.

And so I am determined to prove to you just how wonderful this shade can look…after all red is the colour of love is it not…

Potent Posies

Nothing quite packs a punch as a fistful of crimson blooms. Romantic and eye-catching a raspberry bouquet just screams love and romance.

Don’t necessarily think that you have to opt for thick heads of red roses if you’re going down this colour route however. The beauty with red flowers is that there’s just so many varieties to choose from – from anemones, tulips, dahlias to ranunculus, clematis and even poppies.

Potent Posies

I’d recommend using a spectrum of red hues rather than colour blocking with a single shade. This breaks up floral arrangements bringing them slap bang up to date with the 21st century. Add foliage for a wistful feel or if you’re looking for something more contemporary stick with thick heads of roses and peonies albeit in different tones.

I particularly love the pop of the splashes of purple of the grape hyacinths against these scarlet peonies at the top here. You wouldn’t think such a colour combination would work but it so does. Equally the contrast of pink hues against red tones looks equally gorgeous too.

Scarlet Ladies

Yes, yes and more yes.

Nothing warms my heart more than seeing a bevy of beautiful maids dressed in scarlet frocks. Be they mismatched or coordinating there’s a real wow factor associated with such bold shades.

I’ve yet to see a maid dressed in red lace but I’m desperate to see a bride use this material in such a modern way. Opting for frocks in shorter lengths looks more contemporary than longer versions too. If you’re choosing to dress your girls in cherry hues then let the dress do the talking and opt for nude shoes and subtle bouquets as a finishing touch.

Scarlet Ladies

It’s worth bearing in mind that red gowns which err on the pinkier side rather than at the orange end of the spectrum suit a wider range of skin tones. It’s something to remember particularly if your best girls don’t look alike; this way you can be sure that they all look beautiful.

Whilst most brides won’t probably want to sport a red frock themselves, there’s no reason why you can’t dash on a slick of pillarbox red lippy or the sweetest strawberry heels as the perfect nod to the wider colour theme. Finish off with lashings of the blackest mascara.

Patisserie & Paper

When I was pulling together the inspiration for this post, I got more than a little peckish. It’s surprising just how many of our favourite fruits (and sweet treats) happen to be red so it was only fair that I shared this plethora of goodies with you too.

We’ve seen the popularity of layered Victoria sponges increase lately and it’s no wonder. They look beautiful and taste just as gorgeous to boot. If you’re looking for a subtle twist on this classic why not serve up individual portions in sweet glass jars for guests as dessert.

Patisserie and Paper

For a healthy alternative, why not offer bowls of luscious cherries and fecund berries in large bowls to be passed between guests – perfect for a rustic summertime wedding. Think about how you serve your sweet treats too – presentation is always key and a neutral background will always make your red delicacies pop against it.

And I couldn’t resist throwing some paper pretty into the mix as well – choose luxurious cardstock in pale hues and literally let the ruby toned calligraphy do the talking.

Titian Touches

This plethora of titian delights firmly proves that an all-red colour scheme can look breathtaking gorgeous whilst ultra modern too.

Why not serve bespoke raspberry or cherry cocktails with customised napkins in the same shade? You could add a monogram or a favourite saying of yours and your beau’s to make it a little bit more special.

Grey and red table settings are perfect for a chic, city soiree whereas distressed wood and soft cotton red and white striped napkins complete with soft strawberry coloured napkins is a wonderful combination for more rustic settings.

Titian Touches

Finish the look with a red bloom at each table setting or a sequinned heart for those of you after a more girly touch.

So are you feeling inspired? Will you be using red in your wedding decor?

I’m off to munch on some delicious strawberries…maybe just maybe Spring has arrived.

All my love Lolly xxx

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Let Your Love Grow.

I love this time of year.

Granted the Christmas and New Year festivities are now over and many of us are feeling the pinch on the pocket but somehow there’s just so much to look forward to.

A brand new year lies ahead, full of promise and excitement, the nights are finally getting lighter and I’m guessing that quite a few of you got engaged over the holiday period – congratulations and hello!

Perhaps most exciting though is the appearance of lush green shoots poking out of the soil – it’s like Nature is saying ‘hold on, Spring is just around the corner and it’s going to be wild’.

Not surprisingly then, I started thinking the first blooms of spring – snowdrops and crocuses, daffodils and anemones and before I knew it I was compiling an inspiration board of the most glorious bouquets for you lovelies to pour over.

And I just had to share it…

Spring Greens

Where best to start than with the floral delights that inspired this post. Admittedly there are some flowers that technically don’t make their appearance until the end of spring in this clutch of images but the colours are absolutely bang on.

Youthful and carefree, Spring Green bouquets are ideal for weddings hosted in the first few months of the year and even into early summer. Light yellows and greens are beautifully offset by blush pinks and lilacs. Try mirroring these hues in your wider decor choices to create a clean and fresh atmosphere for your big day.

Spring Greens

Spring flowers are usually heavily fragranced – think hyacinths, narcissus, tulips and even daffodils so bouquets using these blooms offer up a double sensory experience for beautiful brides as they glide down the aisle.

I’m particularly in love with the hyacinth and tulip bouquet in the middle of this board. It’s like someone has watercoloured the head of each of these blooms – just dreamy.

Ferns and Foliage

I adore brides that think outside of the traditional flower box by opting for foliage and ferns, seedheads and succuluents in their floral arrangements. There’s an understated beauty about these forgotten plants so I’m thrilled to see the popularity of them is increasing.

Perfect for a rustic wedding or for those brides who aren’t so enamoured with traditional blooms, these natural elements really hold their own. For example they certainly aren’t going to be wilting at the end of the big day.

Ferns And Foliage

‘Ferns and Foliage’ bouquet elements tend to fall in the same colour spectrum giving you the freedom to play with texture and composition – an architectural take on the traditional bouquet if you will. If you’re worried about your posy appearing too flat, why not add viburnum berries into the mix. Their petrol blue iridescence adds the perfect amount of va-va voom.

If you love this look but want to add a element of softness to these somewhat masculine posies then I’d suggest wrapping the ends of your bouquet in a wide ribbon in a pastel shade or lengths of lace.

The perfect whimsical touch to a gorgeous posy.

Old School Beauty

Here at RMW HQ, we’ve noticed a comeback of late of some of the traditionally forgotten or once out of favour flowers. Blooms like Dahlias, Marsh Mallow and Violets – all wonderful and glorious in their own right so I’m glad to see them flaunting their wares again.

‘Old School Beauty’ is all about grown up glamour – these bouquets don’t shout for attention but they exude a seductive allure regardless. Often appealing to those brides looking for a more sophisticated feel they offer a sumptuous beauty without appearing too stiff or done.

Old School Beauty

With their muted palettes – I like to call it ‘tea-stained’ – blush pinks, creamy yellows and faded peaches you can’t help but see their romantic elegance. I love the contrast of these blooms against a darkly seductive ribbon wrapped about the stems.

This bouquet looks fantastic at late Summer and early Autumn weddings – it’s almost as if nature is singing its last hurrah before darker, stormier nights arrive.

Think Pink

Another bridal trend experiencing somewhat of a resurgence is the bold use of a pink colour palette. Fun and girly, ‘Think Pink’ is perfect for those brides who want a truly romantic feel to their wedding. Aside from decor choices, one way of subtly integrating pink and blush hues is by choosing blooms in this colour spectrum.

Perfect for Spring and Summer weddings because of the availability of pink blooms such as sweet peas, O’Hara roses, peonies and tulips, bouquets in this shade are both eye-catching and frivolous; hell if you can’t be frivolous on your wedding day when can you?

Think Pink

If you’re looking to create interest or are anxious about your bouquet seeming a little ‘intense’, try selecting flowers in a range of pink hues rather than adhering to a single tone of pink. Pairing hot pinks with candy shades and the briefest touch of lemon yellow or mint green is the key to a successful ‘Think Pink’ bouquet.

Opting for a really ‘full’ bouquet full of blousey headed blooms will ensure you pull this look off beautifully. If you’re keen to avoid a posy that’s too round in shape then ask your florist to leave some of the more delicate flowers slightly longer in length to create that looser handpicked look.

It’ll look blinking gorgeous!

So lovelies, which is your favourite? I’m torn between Old School Beauty and Spring Greens.

Perhaps you’ve opted for a different look entirely, if so we’d love to hear all the details.

Maybe you’re not having a floral bouquet at all. Did you see Celine’s bouquet in her Parisian wedding last week? She chose a bouquet of pink pom poms and it looked IMMENSE.

So come on let’s hear what you think.

All my love Lolly xxx

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Cocktail Hour.

If there’s one thing I’ve gleaned during my time within the wedding industry it’s that there’s much we can learn from our cousins across the water.

Sure enough, the Yanks have taken the simple wedding and raised it to an art form with so many different components that us traditional Brits don’t quite know where to put ourselves.

Whilst sometimes this can feel overwhelming, I actually think their ‘go big or go home’ attitude can be pretty exciting. ‘Why?’ I hear you ask. Because it forces us to rethink the parameters of what constitutes a ‘wedding’. Indeed, the modern day bride and groom possess an unprecedented amount of freedom in their wedding related decision-making.

When RMW exhibited at the National Wedding Show earlier this year, mums informed me time and time again that they’d never had this much choice when they were getting married. Their big day was almost pre-determined for them so they were thrilled that their daughters were experiencing a different reality – the chance to do things their way.

I fear I may have become a little philosophical for what essentially is just an inspiration post. You want the pretty don’t you….

Bear with me.

Essentially what I’m trying to say is try not to be intimidated by the amount of choice open to you. You don’t have to do everything. The beauty of having such choice is that you are free to choose what you want to incorporate into your big day.

For me, one of these things was the American-inspired ‘cocktail hour’. Admittedly in the end, for financial reasons, it just wasn’t to be but I so desperately wanted to include this into my big day.

Instead I’ve settled for sharing some ideas with you lovely lot in the hope that one of you will host a spirited soiree and I can live vicariously through you.

Party Tricks

Chic and sophisticated, the ‘cocktail hour’ is the perfect ‘filler’ between the end of the speeches and the beginning of the evening entertainment.

It signifies the end of the daytime activities and precludes the beginning of naughtier nighttime activity all under the guise of civilised fun. Plus it gives something for your guests to talk about too – what’s not to love?

Now every girl needs a pretty dress for a cocktail party.

Granted if you’re the bride then you’ll already be wearing a bobby-dazzler but seeing as it’s Christmas there’s bound to be a fair few of you looking for frocks for works parties and the like.

So we thought we’d spoil you by sharing some of our top picks and favourite cocktail dress images.

Which is your favourite?

Will you dare to bare or take the sophisticated covered up approach?

Deck The Halls

If you’ve decided that you are going to host a cocktail hour (lucky you!) then I’d really recommend going for it on the decor front. Not only does it help to set the scene for your guests thus enhancing their experience but it also signifies that the wedding schedule has moved on to the next stage. Remember, the cocktail hour should be an event in itself, not a bleary memory consigned to oblivion.

And there’s a plethora of inspiration out there to help you do this.

The obvious place to start is with the cocktails themselves. Adding glitzy swizzlers and straws or utilising unique containers such as these test tubes pictured here elevates the average cocktail to something a little bit special.

Whilst I couldn’t fulfill my cocktail hour fantasy I did ask my venue to provide champagne saucers rather than flutes at the champagne reception for more of a unique touch. The guests looked rather fabulous clutching their coupes and many commented that they felt that they were in an episode of Downton with such fantastic glasses.

Designing cocktail-focused paper pretty as part of your overall stationery suite is one way of really integrating the event into the overall wedding schedule. Think about designing bespoke drinks menus or even opting for coasters that double up as a wedding guestbook.

Equally paying attention to the overall decor of the area in which you’ve chosen to host your cocktail hour is a surefire way to make an impact. Covering high tables with gorgeous linen and topping them off with pretty florals, painting cocktail signs, and ordering monogrammed napkins are all economical ways of transforming a space into a designated cocktail venue.

Festive Spirit

Ok so this board is really just an assortment of delicious cocktails. But we all need something pretty to look at on a Tuesday afternoon.

I suppose the point I’m trying to convey here is that you can create cocktails that are absolutely in keeping with your wedding colour scheme.

Hosting an Autumn wedding? Why not serve berrylicious cocktails…

Perhaps you’re having summertime nuptials…provide your guests with something light and refreshing instead.

You could even opt for your a cocktail using your favourite flavours and ingredients such as Earl Grey tea or rose infusions.

If you’re really stuck for some cocktail inspired inspiration then you can rely on a RMW favourite which uses copious amounts of both gin and champagne…

A RMW Inspired Tipple

You Will Need:

2 shots of gin – we recommend Bloom London Dry Gin for its floral flavour
Champagne
1 shot of sugar syrup
1 shot of lemon juice (preferably fresh)
a twist of lemon peel
ice cubes

Shake the lemon juice, sugar syrup and gin together with the ice cubes until chilled. Strain this lemony, gin goodness into a champagne flute and top up with champagne.

Add the lemon peel as a final touch. TA DA!!

Now drink!

So what do you think?

Do you feel under pressure to host the wedding of all weddings? Does the plethora of wedding inspiration out there motivate or terrify you?

Do you welcome the big day trends that filter across the big pond or shudder in horror?

Will you be hosting a cocktail hour on your big day? Perhaps you see this as a gratuitous waste of money that would be better spent elsewhere. If so, what features highly on your list of priorities?

Let us know your thoughts…

All my love Lolly xxx

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Clutch Me Close.

As I sit here writing this post for you gorgeous lot I realise I have run away with myself.

Again.

You see this post was meant to be more of a discussion piece; instead it seems to have turned into a shopping list for the millions of bags that I’m currently coveting.

Oops.

But I’ve taken the liberty of assuming that you won’t really mind feasting your eyes on the profusion of pretty that I’ve laid out for you below. Plus looking at a host of scrummy pictures might help to get your debating juices going – it’s a thought anyway.

And so to business.

Bags.

Jewel-encrusted clutches, big-day purses, oversized pocketbooks and glittery miniature totes. You name it, I probably want it. Whilst shoes, for many of you, are your downfall, bags are my kryptonite.

They make me go weak at the knees and I break out into a little pony-stamping dance if I see a piece of leathery goodness and I can’t have it. I am such a drama queen.

But….somewhat surprisingly, I went bag-less on my actual wedding day. I just couldn’t be doing with holding the bouquet and then a bag on top. Instead I left my essential valuables in my room and gave my lipgloss to my bridesmaids to hold.

This wasn’t my best move…but that’s another story.

So I want to hear what you think.

Have you purchased a wedding day clutch or will you relying on an old favourite? Perhaps, like me you’re choosing to opt out of the big day bag scenario because the thought of it is too much to bear.

Either way I’d love to hear your arguments – both for and against.

And whilst we’re discussing the finer points, here’s some delectable clutches to have a look at.

Metallic Maidens

I know. I know. I’m a broken record.

You’d have to be living under a rock to not be aware of the fact that I love all things golden so I just couldn’t miss the opportunity to mix my bag lust with my favourite colour palette.

In my defense there’s something about glittery, sparkly hues that scream PARTY!

Be it an oversized clutch, a sequin encrusted pouch or a miniature boxed case complete with jewels there’s pretty much something for everyone here.

Which brings me onto my second question…

For those of who will be appropriating a bag on your big day…how big do you go? How big is too big? How small can you go before it all seems a bit pointless because you can’t actually fit anything in apart from your lippy?

FYI my favourite golden clutch here is the Bottega Veneta although I’d probably have to remortgage my house to buy it.

Berry Burst

Admittedly you’d have to be a brave bride to opt for a huge bag in bright orange like this girlie at the top here. That said, I love a bride that makes a bold fashion statement on her big day.

I confess that this concoction of images is inspired by my current obsession with viburnum berries which take on an amazing metallically, petrol blue colour – hence the feathered teal clutch at the bottom. And then I just generally felt berry inspired (sorry I couldn’t resist!).

In all seriousness though there are so many evening bags in this colour spectrum that are available to purchase right now. I’m not sure whether it’s this time of year but it seems that all of my regular haunts are stocking clutches in reds, corals, oranges, yellows and pinks.

The world is your oyster my friends.

Don’t you just love the book inspired bag with the ‘once upon a time…’ inscription on the front. Perfect for the start of your new chapter together.

Feathers And Frills

….and studs and appliqué and mother of pearl and fur and tassels and pearls.

You name it, this board has it!

But when does so much become too much?

I’m in awe of the spiky number at the top here but I wouldn’t quite know how to hold it. For example, popping it under your arm is a definite no-no unless you want to spear yourself in the process.

I do love the frilly number in the middle too – perfect for a bride with a ruffled frock, it just oozes romance and could very easily be reused after the big day for other nights out.

Perhaps my favourite however is the circular tasseled bag and the feathered clutch which would suit girls wearing a 1920’s inspired frock on their big day. You can just imagine a fringed bride shimmying her way around the dancefloor to The Charleston whilst grasping one of these numbers.

Internal Workings

This last moodboard is not so much concerned with the bag itself but rather your perfect recipe for its contents.

What would you pack?

Having learnt from experience I strongly recommend that any bride keep a pack of tissues as close to her person as possible. If you’re anything like me then you’ll blubber your way down the aisle all the way to the speeches and then some more if you’re lucky.

Take it from me it’s best to keep some tissues on hand.

If you want to stay ahead in the style stakes then investing in some pretty paper for this purpose is the way to go. I wished that I’d come across these equestrian inspired tissues for my own big day; aren’t they gorgeous?

Any girl worth her salt knows that a perfectly applied lip is the keystone to a glamorous look. It makes sense then to not only include your favourite lippy and blusher but also a cutesy pocket mirror too – I’m in love with this mirror from Depeapa.

Hairgrips are handy too if you’re planning to go all out on the dancefloor. Make them glittery and fun or kitschy cute to ensure you look your very best.

And lastly, a girl can never have enough pocket mints – you want to make sure that you’re minty fresh for your new spouse don’t you?!

So will you be clutching a glitzy number on your wedding day or is this another bit of paraphernalia that you can really do without?

Who will be looking after your prized possessions instead?

Your chief bridesmaid or your mum?

I should also note at this stage that I am in no way responsible for any damage that may be inflicted upon your bank balance after viewing these clutches, purses and miniature totes.

Alternatively it might be worth leaving the laptop open at this page for ‘passers by’ in order to give them some inspiration for your Christmas presents.

Failing that there’s always Santa…but then that depends if you’ve been a good girl this year.

Have you?

All my love Lolly xxx

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Best Foot Forward.

I’m curious.

Tell me folks, just how important were your shoes to you on your big day?

I wanted to go all out on some metallic courts for my big day but I know that this isn’t exactly the majority view.

Going all out that is.

In fact, there seems to be a general split into two camps. For some of you, splurging on a special pair of shoes for your wedding doesn’t necessarily come top of your priorities. I know from my own experience that some brides think this is excessive – wanton waste if you will. Indeed for many, it’s an unaffordable luxury.

For others though, it’s a case of ‘if you can’t buy that (bank balance) killer pair of shoes for your wedding day, then when can you?’ Some brides even opt for two sets of shoes, the obligatory heels for the day and a beautiful pair of flats for when their feet simply cannot take any more.

I see the merit in both arguments so I guess I’m fence sitting really. I’m just interested to see what you lot think.

In the meantime, whilst you’re deliberating over the finer points of your argument (whichever it may be) I have a wonderful concoction of shoe-inspired images for your viewing pleasure.

Shall we begin?

Fifty Shades Of White

There’s something very chic about a bride who selects an all-white colour palette for her wedding outfit.

Whilst chalky white and ivory toned heels have been overlooked of late due in part to the popularity of colour pop and metallic trends, we’re beginning to see a real resurgence in the number of brides reverting back to this more traditional hue.

And why not? There really is a wealth of talent and styles to choose from.

My go-to favourite really has to be the peeptoe but these big-bowed beauties from BHLDN could help to change my mind. They really are so romantic and would look great with some skinny jeans and a cropped Chanel inspired jacket for your going away outfit.

Lastly, if you want to wear your shoes after your big day is over but can’t quite envisage yourself sporting the daz-white hue with your jeans, there are plenty of companies out there who can custom dye them for you.

Talk about really getting the wear out of your shoes.

Embellished

Perhaps my favourite of all the shoe styles displayed here, the embellished shoe is a trend that has been gaining strength for over a year and there seems to be no sign of its popularity abating.

From dazzling brooch adornments to intricate beading through to feather-like chiffon I love how this style allows brides to inject a bit of their own personality into their day. The beauty of an adorned shoe is that it often takes inspiration from high fashion and not just from the bridal world, giving you plenty of scope to find the perfect shoe to suit you.

I particularly love those brides who choose to reflect the fabrics and textures of their dresses in their shoes. If you’re wearing a frothy number why not consider equally ephemeral shoes to match. Perhaps you’re a vintage bride who has opted for a fringed 1920’s frock with matching t-bars…if so we want to hear all about it.

If, like me, you have a special place in your heart for embellished heels but the budget isn’t quite so amenable, why not contemplate taking the DIY approach. Purchasing a plain pair of shoes and adding your own brooch applique is one way of making this trend work for you without the bank balance taking a battering.

Scarlet Harlots

I can’t say that I was that enamoured with Dorothy’s ruby slippers as a child. I know what you’re thinking…I must have been the only young lassie that didn’t want to click her scarlet encrusted heels together and skip around with a dog called Toto.

But when I saw Christine’s vampy red vixen stilettos pictured at the top here from her Brighton wedding earlier this year it was LOVE at first sight. And now I just can’t seem to satisfy this desire for elegant heels in vermillion hues.

And I’m not the only one.

In fact, at RMW HQ we’ve noticed that quite a few of you gorgeous lot are choosing wedding shoes in a delicious array of berry shades. We’re talking carmine bows, cherry-hued hearts, cerise glitter and pillar-box red flowers on top too.

Opting for wedding heels in this colour spectrum is a bold style statement and one I heartily approve of. It adds panache and a heap load of sass to your wedding frock, be it short or long, whilst being utterly romantic too.

What’s not to love?

Hot Metal

The sister trend to embellished, ‘hot metal’ is all about gilded golds, tarnished silvers and burnished bronzes. Nothing quite screams party princess in the way a pair of shimmering peeptoes does.

I’ll let you in on a secret – I was a hot metal bride.

And I loved it.

But I have to confess that my choice of footwear was partly determined by my decision to purchase something I knew I’d wear time and time again. You know… whilst consuming a luxurious meal with my beau… on a night out with the girls…. during the local supermarket shop.

Essentially though it was important to me to choose accessories that I could and would use beyond the day itself. That way I could be sure that when I was spending our precious pennies it would be worth it.

It’s all about pound per wear folks.

Is this something you agree with? Would you wear any of your accessories after the day itself or do you want to wrap them up and store them safely until your children and grandchildren can wear them themselves?

So what type of bride are you? Are you a scarlet harlot or a hot metal lover?

Perhaps you’ve opted to clad your feet in a more neutral palette instead.

Are you matching your shoes to your dress or looking for a colour pop contrast?

As always RMW-ettes we want to hear your thoughts.

All my love Lolly xxx

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