There isn’t a more versatile hairstyle than a half up half down bridal do. Perfectly enabling you the best of both worlds and looking effortlessly chic, in wavy, braided and twisted styles to suit a multitude of bridal looks, personalities and wedding dresses. It’s no wonder it’s the most popular choice of wedding hairstyle amongst brides.
Whilst the wedding world looks to Bridal Fashion Week to see which gowns beautiful brides will be wearing over the next few years, we were looking at the stunning hairstyles you’ll be rocking in a little less time, and trust me, there were some absolute beauties. Today we’ve teamed up with one of our handpicked wedding suppliers, Victoria of Victoria Ralph Hair, who’s going to give us the lowdown on our five favourite gorgeous dos. Victoria is one of the best at creating fresh and modern hairstyles for the fashion-conscious bride, so naturally she was our go-to for all things barnet!
If you stopped by the blog last Monday afternoon you’ll have seen our super easy but oh so covetable smokey eye and bold berry lip beauty tutorial. If so, then you’ll also be aware that we made a solemn promise to also share with you lovelies how to recreate the beautiful hairstyles from our most recent piece of editorial – The Fall.
And so, without further ado I’m going to pass you over to the talented Claire Salter who will walk you through the necessary steps to achieve tousled perfection and bohemian braids for your big day and beyond.
Honestly folks I just know that you’ll love the two looks so much that you’ll be trying to recreate them for yourselves faster than you can say ‘two pronged curling tongs’.
Claire Salter: To create this sexy relaxed hair firstly you have to be relaxed yourself!
Don’t stress about waking up that extra hour or so on your big day to wash your hair. Hair that isn’t freshly washed styles much better so wash your locks the day before and then you can concentrate on your beauty sleep.
To create this look I used a Two Pronged Pearl Pro Styler by Remington; a handy tip is to use a heat protective glove this allows you to wrap the hair right around the barrel without burning your fingers.
Firstly section the hair around the base leaving about an inch section from ear to ear and then clip the rest out of the way.
Wrap the hair around the wand in a zig zag way.
Continue to section the hair and repeat to zig zag with the wand.
When you have completed the whole head the next step is to add some volume to your locks!
Once again, section the hair, clip up and then sprinkle a little of this wonder dust from Schwarzkopf.
Massage your hair and see the volume grow.
Another tip is to spray a little hair spray on your hands and then give your hair a little fluffing up from underneath.
Then all that is required is a little twist or braid of your own!
For my completed look I just took a small section of Abigail’s hair either side and gently twisted each section and secured with a kirby grip.
As this look is a freestyle relaxed look there is no real need to fix the hair with hairspray.
Braids can be incorporated in to many hair styles, sleek, neat, sexy, boho and self styled!
For the second look look I chose a relaxed boho braid.
To create this romantic updo you need to apply the step by step process as outlined above by heating the hair with the two barrelled tongs.
Once completed, section the hair and spray some Sexy Hair “Backcomb In A Bottle” at the root; this wonder product does all the hard work for you in creating texture and volume.
The next step is to section the hair depending on where you would like your braids. I chose to start by tilting Abigail’s head over to the left side and begin braiding from there.
To create the raised braid you take three sections of hair and cross them under rather than over (like you would for a usual french braid).
Continue to braid the hair until the end of the section.
Then tease out the braid with your fingers giving a more relaxed feel.
The next step is to scoop around another section of hair with your fingers and also braid this; you don’t have to be too precise with the sectioning as this look is very relaxed. I chose to braid a section about half way down Abigail’s head.
You can then tuck away the end of the first braid, hiding the end under the second braid.
Then with the second braid take this back on itself up to the center of the head and grip in place with a fine waved hair grip. These grips are great for secretly pinning hair in place.
The next step is to take the remaining section of hair and braid this also.
Once again tease the braid with your fingers to open it out and make it feel more relaxed.
Then take this last braid up and over the first and second braids and again tuck away the end by gripping with a some fine wave grips.
The final steps to your bohemian braids are to gently tease out the hair with the end of a tail comb & then give a little spritz of hairspray, I used Sexy Hair’s “Spray And Play”
Now you are ready to “rock your wedding hair”.
So there you have it. The perfect step by step tutorial to AMAZING w-day hair. Frankly my ‘Santa-please-may-I-have-this-for-Christmas’ list has just grown exponentially. I most definitely need that two-pronged Remington Pro Styler in my life.
Who’s with me? Will you be trying out these two glorious hair ideas for your big day or perhaps for a Christmas do?
Let us know how you get on…
All my love Lolly xxx
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
I cannot “do” hair.
Make-up yes ( unless I forget to put my contact lenses in first and tend to over-do the Aunt Sally blush), high shoes DOUBLE yes ( 6 inches today people!) and I think at 30 years of age I have finally mastered the art of fashion that suits my body type, tastes and personality.
Back to hair again though. no no no no NO. The thought of having to do something with my barnet ( especially under time constraints) brings me out in a rash. I have fine, flyaway locks that don’t hold a curl and naturally have about as much volume as a pancake. And I would love nothing more than to create some feminine up-do that wasn’t severe ( my head just appears even more moony), wasn’t going to “date”, would feel comfortable and most importantly not fall out half an hour later.
I am very pleased to tell you how that I, Charlotte when-I-do-my-own-hair-I-look-a-bit-tragic O’Shea can actually re-create Julie’s MESSY SIDE BUN. Oh yes I can folks, practiced after putting these templates together and everything.
And guess what lovelies, Now you can too! with Severin Hubert’s step-by-step How to.
Preparing the Hair
Before styling, wash hair as normal but with no conditioner – I know it sounds crazy but if you want your style to hold for the whole day please try not to add conditioner. I do suggest though using hair products to help keep the desired style you are wanting to create. Look for a good brand name, you may have to spend a little more but it’s worth it…after all you are getting married! I like to use Milkshake products, they do exactly what they say they do and the smell is delicious!
SEV: Julie was looking for something that was not too structured and very soft around her pretty face. The messy side bun was the obvious choice for her….tres romantique.
Step 1: I used mousse to help set the desired style. Then blow dry under using a round brush to create a sleek smooth base.
Step 2. I took sections of the hair and curled using medium sized tongs.
Step 3. I then secured the curls using hair grips and left to set. For the top part of the head heated rollers were used to create a softer finish.
Step 4. Once cooled down, I ran my hands through the hair to break up the curls, using a little hair spray to help set the hair.
Step 5. To create the side bun I scooped all the hair over to one side and tied loosely with a hair band creating a pony tail.
Step 6. I then took sections of the pony tail and started to create a loose bun securing with pins. I let some of the hair loose on the side of the face to give a soft natural look. Finish off by using hair spray to help hold in place.
Photography – C B Media.
With huge thanks to Severin Hubert and Julie for showing our lovelies how to have the hottest messy hair in weddingville……
Big Tell Us If You Are Going The Bun Route 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…….
All set in the beautiful Hampton Manor.
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?
Big Some Modern Glamour Coming Right Up Love
P.S It’s 3 post Monday people!
I’m not great with hair it has to be said, it is long, blonde, very straight and very fine ( although there is a lot of it) so generally I just let it dry naturally at leave it be.
Sometimes if I’m feeling really adventurous I can put in some dry shampoo for volume, a few plaits and surf spray for that whole beach look and then if I’m going somewhere REALLY special I may even do some wavy bits with the GHD’s. That’s about your lot in the hair glamour stakes for little ‘ol moi.
It’s a good job then I have the most fantastic hairdresser Esther who has been cutting, colouring and blow drying my hair to perfection since I was about 17. Esther used to be one of the top stylists/colourists at a posh Midlands salon for years but after adopting her gorgeous little boy, now has a cute little salon of her own at her home. So not only do I benefit from her expertise but she is very very reasonable and nothing is too much trouble. It was a given she would be doing my hair on the Big Day.
I have been honey blonde, caramel blonde, bombshell blonde…..you name it and Esther can do it. Funnily enough it’s only been recently that I have discovered the best blonde for me -a light ash. Believe it or not this is achieved by just using a plain old bleach lightener as a top weave and leaving my natural colour throughout the rest, pair this with my secret weapon ……… Schwarzkopf “Touch of Silver” shampoo ( I think it is meant for old ladies grey hair to remove brassiness and I buy it for £1.90 from Lloyds pharmacy bargain bin) and I have a suits me perfectly pale ashy hue.
Although I regularly recommend it to EVERYONE – a word of warning on the miracle that is touch of silver. I do go OTT and probably use it too often, this can result in anything from a subtle hint of lilac ( my sister thinks this is cool by the way) or just well….looking a bit purple. Esther and I worked out between us the exact amount needed to get it absolutely spot on for W day of course. Wanting to avoid Matchy Matchy I certainly didn’t have plans for my barnet matching my mauve hydrangea’s …. 🙂
Anyway the colour/cut was pretty much decided early on in the process, it was the style that I just didn’t have a clue about. I’d looked through so many different magazines – both bridal and hair specific, browsed lots of websites …..I just didn’t see anything that would suit me.
About 3 months before the wedding I had a bit of a light bulb moment, there were different elements of various styles I liked so maybe Esther could just kind of …put them altogether? All along I had wanted to look like me just a more put together polished version so I didn’t want to stray from the easy breezy beachy look too much……
So on my birthday weekend at the beginning of March I booked in for my first hair trial, Esther was very excited as I arrived ( her favourite is doing bridal hair) and asked me what I wanted….
me: ” A Bridget Bardot/Pocahontas/ethereal inspired Boho glamourama do please”
Now I am assuming most hair dressers would be completely perplexed at this request but oh no – not Esther. Maybe the smallest hint of a frown appeared as she contemplated where to begin exactly but she had my vision in seconds.
Esther: ” So what you want is a bit of 60’s beehive a la Bridget, mixed in with some plaits and wavy bits as per Pocahontas but with a glossy pretty angelic finish….although not too “set” so you could be wearing it down the beach?”
Seriously this lady is a GENIUS I tell you.
Esther did some major backcombing, pinned it at the back of the crown ( to retain the “bouf” as it were) then added some plaits around this so it looked like the plaits were pinning it ( if that makes sense) added more plaits, more waves, some clip in extensions for added thickness….lots of blow drying and glossing and more backcombing and shiny bits ….and voila – just what I had imagined.
That evening to celebrate my birthday the six of us ( me, sister, respective boyfriends and the parents) were dining at Malmaison so everyone would get to see my intended “wedding hair”. I was pretty nervous about this actually for some reason, not sure why, think it was because I knew the style was a bit non-bridal and didn’t want anyone ( my Mum in particular) to be disappointed.
James immediately loved it – no it didn’t look like “wedding hair” ( I had made him look at hundreds of magazine pictures as well….) but that was why he liked it.
My Mum as expected wasn’t sure – she liked it and it suited me she said it just wasn’t what she had in mind…. hmmmm oh dear.
Sister loved it – thought is was very “cool” and if anything thought it should be “bigger bigger make it even BIGGER!!!” ….
And then my Dad God bless him tried to be what I think was complementary and exclaimed ” Wow I really like it! it looks like a total mess!”
me: ” A mess? Dad I don’t want a dragged through a bush backwards hair catastrophe on the biggest day of my life?!…..oh my God I am so going to have to have an actual chignon!!!!”
Dad: ” No No …oops said it the wrong way again …what I meant was it looks very erm…undone?…..like erm you know……kind of bohemian?”
So my Mum wasn’t convinced but as I had already “succumbed to the veil” just to please her she was just going to have to learn to bloomin’ well like it 😉
I had a second hair trial about a month before the Big Day – just to confirm it was perfect, I had some extra plaits in for a bit more beachy boho and I preferred it -also even more backcombing to make it even more Bridget Bardot big.
Esther had my extensions a few weeks before so they would be prepared – thus giving us extra time in case it was needed. She had also taken detailed pictures of each trial so she could remember precisley how many plaits and waves would work best.
everything was ready to go……
Hmmmm and then I got thinking about maybe making it look a bit more textured …..even after Esther’s expertise and a can of extra hold Elnett the nature of my hair means that waves have a tendency to fall out so…..
me ( calling Esther like 5 days before W day) ” I have been thinking about adding texture to my do….now don’t laugh but I actually remembered when I used to use a crimper when I was young and it was pretty darn cool ….erm…. in the 80’s?”
Esther: ” Oh Oh I am lovin’ the crimper!!! yes I think that would work! I’ll do a few in your extensions as practice and if it looks great we’ll just add some more to your own hair as well on the day”
me: ” Really you are sure? Brilliant! thing is I don’t have time for another trial so…I will just have to trust you……oh my actual God, I am having crimped hair on my wedding day……”
Esther:” Honestly it will be fine, if not I’ll call you, otherwise….see you on Friday!”
And she arrived on Friday the 29th May at 7.30am on the dot bless her with extensions plaited, waved and crimped to perfection….
I loved my hair on the day and was really glad I went with what I wanted in the end. Don’t get me wrong it would be great if everyone loved everything you choose/decide on but don’t beat yourself up about it – as long as you and your H2B love it that’s all that really matters.