Tuesday 31 March 2015

Going for Gold Wedding Shoes

*Full disclosure* - this is a completely biased blog post. I still hold a candle for my gold Halston Heritage wedding day heels {bought for a steal on The Outnet}. So I've gone searching for similar shoes on your behalf, and found a delicious selection on Shopbop. I've even included glamorous flats for comfortable late-night dancing! What do you think? Do you fancy going for gold on your wedding day?

{I want this!} 1. Diane von Furstenberg Viola Too Sandals, £238.70 | 2. Schutz Dunna Sandals, £122.76 | 
3. Badgley Mischka Melany II Wedge Sandals, £146.63 | 4. Badgley Mischka Mayee Flat Thong Sandals, £67.52 | 5. Badgley Mischka Glenna Espadrille Wedges, £146.63 | 6. Badgley Mischka Melinda II Flat Sandals, £112.53 | 
7. Schutz Drauzia Woven Sandals, £136.40 

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Monday 30 March 2015

A Pretty in Pink Spring Wedding planned in Five Months

Burlap and lace, baby's breath and bunting, paper poms and fairy lights, just a few of my favourite wedding decorations in the world! The lovely Charlotte and Chris planned a pretty in pink wedding, and I love all their feminine details. Can you believe Charlotte organised it all in five months? Even the wedding favours are printed with a personal message. Other wedding ideas to steal include the giant wooden heart wedding guest book, and the beribboned jam jar vases - a super easy DIY you can re-create at home. Thank you to Alexa Poppe Wedding Photography for her lovely pictures. Make sure you check out her blog for more wedding inspiration.

A Pretty in Pink Spring Wedding planned in Five Months

I love a winter wedding! Brides who are brave enough to embrace the chill have a huge head start.....they know what the weather will be like. Charlotte and Chris prepared themselves with pretty umbrellas in their theme colours of pink and blue, and some seriously classy wellington boots. I love Charlotte's selection of three different types of footwear. Glittery heels, glittery flats, and glittery boots. All fabulous. I'm also swooning over her classically British dress, from local designers Romantica of Devon, and her simple one bloom bouquet. There's plenty more pretty in pink details coming in Part 2 of this lovely wedding - don't miss it. Huge thanks to the lovely Alexa Poppe Wedding Photography for these beautiful images. Find similar wellies via Zalando or Joules. And for a similar pretty wedding barn venue, check out Heaton House Farm.

Friday 27 March 2015

Wedding Trends of 2015 - Skinny Engagement Rings

We're all used to the concept of wearing two rings on your wedding finger, but this year is going to be all about ring stacking. Instead of one expensive solitaire, fashion forward brides and their grooms are choosing several, skinny engagement rings. It's such a fantastic idea! Every dainty ring complements the next, and you can carry on adding each anniversary, or when you have your first baby. It's also the perfect choice for budget-conscious couples, as each ring can cost as little as £100. I love these rings by Nicole Scheetz, but you can find plenty more from Nikki Stark Jewellery, Crystal Stone London, and from Cat Bird NYC {aka my favourite jewellery shop of all time}.

{I want this!} Clockwise from top left: 1. Opal Ring Set, £185 | 2. Stacking Ring Set, £75.50 | 3. Infinity Stacking Ring Set, £130 | 4. Birthstone Ring Set, £203

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Thursday 26 March 2015

Wedding Trends of 2015 - Surprise Inside Wedding Cakes

Multi-coloured wedding cakes have been a huge trend for the last couple of years, but it's only now that it's taken a twist. Instead of icing, it's all about the sponge. Surprise your guests by choosing a traditional white wedding cake, with secret interior, that's only revealed when you cut the cake. Such a fun idea! Take a look at Pinterest for more inspiration.

{Photo Credit} Rainbow Heart Cake picture by Susan Powers Photography. Recipe from Surprise-Inside Cakes by Amanda Rettke

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Wednesday 25 March 2015

A Browns Bride March Sample Sale

Wedding dresses can be a huge part of your budget if you pay full price. Luckily there are lots of sample sales each year, when designers sell off their old stock for less. One of my favourite designer bridal boutiques of all time, Browns Bride has just announced their spring sample sale - cue huge excitement! It's taking place on 29th March 2015 from 11am - 5pm at their shop at 12 Hinde Street in London. They're promising a fantastic selection of dresses from all our top designers, including Monique Lhuillier, Vera Wang, Peter Langner, Marchesa and many more... To book your place call 020 7514 0056. And if you're worrying about the cost of your wedding day look, take a look at my blog post on how to buy your wedding dress for less.

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Tuesday 24 March 2015

Real Luxury Wedding with a Couture Gown & Grey Accents

So there are weddings, and then there are w-e-d-d-i-n-g-s. You may not have the budget for the latter, but it's definitely worth a quick squiz at the pictures for ideas. After all there's nothing stopping you DIYing your details to keep costs down. Fannie and Leonard have to be the most elegant couple in the world, I totally adore their choices of silvery grey and sagey green {quick note for own wedding}, and Fannie's Monaco Couture gown is dreamy. Other stealworthy ideas include the ushers' matching neon sunglasses, the romantic vintage font on the stationery and the bridesmaids' mismatching bouquets. Just goes to show that if you keep the colour palette simple, you can play with variety on which flowers you use. Last but not least, check out the ice-cream sundae bar with pick-your-own topping....now we're talking! Gorgeous photographs as ever from the hugely talented team over at Stephanie Williams Photography.

Friday 20 March 2015

A Jenny Packham Bridal Sample Sale

There's nothing I like more than a good wedding dress sample sale. The cost of gowns is insane, but we all want to look our best on our big day, and nothing feels more special than a truly divine dress. Luckily all the big designers have annual sample sales, you just need to track them down. One way is to read this blog {!}, the other is to check out the Brides Events Diary. In exceedingly exciting news, one of my favourite designers, Jenny Packham is hosting an end of line sale on 9th April, with {wait for it} up to 80% off bridal wear, accessories and lingerie. Jenny's known for her incredibly glamorous gowns, so this is definitely one for your diary. If you're worrying about the cost of your wedding day look, take a look at my blog post on how to buy your wedding dress for less.

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Monday 16 March 2015

The Seven Best Apps for Planning Your Wedding

Like all of us, I'm slightly addicted to my iPhone. I've recently made myself go cold turkey at night - once I'm in bed, I'm not allowed to turn it on. It's made me start reading books again, and I'm no longer tweeting late at night! But I have to admit, I miss my late-night Pinterest binges, and I'm not as up to date with all the other wedding blogs I follow. If you're planning your wedding, there's a few Apps I really recommend downloading - they'll give you inspiration, and help you keep your ideas in order, and even help you with booking a rehearsal dinner.

Sunday 15 March 2015

Wonderful Wedding Blog Links

It's been about six months since I last posted on wonderful wedding blog links, and it's no coincidence that my youngest son just turned 7 months. It's been an epic half year - we moved to Dubai with two children under two, when Arthur was only 5 weeks old. I definitely wouldn't recommend it! As a consequence my blogging had to take a slight back seat, but now we're settled, and Arthur has started to sleep a bit better, I'm back at work, and loving it! I hope you're enjoying Before the Big Day - please do recommend it to all your friends. I'm still based half of the time in London, so this wedding blog will remain UK focused. And for those of you with children, please do check out my parenting blog Before the Baby.

{Photo Credit} Ali Harper - see more from this feather inspired wedding on Southern Weddings. Love this egg & feather themed wedding - perfect for spring and Easter big days

♥ The wedding that cost under £4000
♥ Old-school friendship bracelets - make them for your bridesmaids
♥ What a great idea for a wedding photo booth
♥ One of my favourite wedding invitations ever!
♥ A new way to get engaged
♥ An insanely gorgeous Midsummer Night's Dream
♥ The longest wedding table I've ever seen
♥ You'll love this woodland elopement
♥ Flamingos at a wedding - of course!
♥ A traditional pink & peony English wedding

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Before the Big Day - The Best UK Wedding Blog.

Friday 13 March 2015

Seven Favourite Wedding Guest Book Ideas

Wedding days are all about making memories, and you're going to want to get as much down on film and paper as possible! Top of my 'what I'd rescue if the house was on fire list' is our wedding guest book. Nearly everyone who came to our wedding took a silly polaroid picture of themselves, and stuck it in the book with a lovely message. When I'm having one of 'those' days, there's nothing more uplifting than a quick flick through it. Now, there's all sorts of creative ideas for recording your guests, from jigsaws to collages, but my favourite is still a beautifully bound book. Take a look at my top picks this month.

{I want this!} Wedding Guest Book or Photo Album, £35 by ONR.

Thursday 12 March 2015

Styling Your Groom

Grooms fall into two categories. They either couldn't get a stuff about how they look, or in the months ahead of their wedding, they suddenly turn into a complete peacock, preoccupied with every detail of their outfit. In my experience, most grooms end up falling into the second group - it's just a question of when.........and needless to say, it's usually with two days to go. My husband finally realised that he needed to buy himself a tie 24 hours before we left for France. Luckily we lived in London, so he wasn't short of options, but honestly, I could have killed him!! Make sure that doesn't happen to you, by buying your man one of these fabulous, fashionable ties from V Knit. Stylish, slim, and they come in every colour......simples!

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Monday 9 March 2015

Brilliant Bride & Bridesmaid Presents

Every year, I allow myself the luxury of a smart Smythson diary. As a stationery lover, the gilt-edged, pale blue, featherweight paper, teamed with soft lambskin makes my heart melt. But this year, my husband's grumbling at the cost {£180!} encouraged me to look further afield. Surely there must be something suitably decadent available, but without the hefty price tag? Well I'm thrilled to say I found the answer! Sloane Stationery offers beautiful handcrafted notebooks in a variety of sizes and colours, and I am over the moon with my 2015 diary in aqua blue. All their products can be personalised, and they're the perfect birthday present or hostess gift. Take a look a this stunning I Do Notebook for Brides, which you can personalise with your name, or why not order a few for your bridesmaids' presents. They also make matching photo albums for your wedding pictures. Sloane Stationery - elegant yet fun, and crazily reasonable. Check them out, you won't disappointed… I’ve certainly been converted!

Written by guest contributor Lou Marmabachi

{I want this!}
  I Do Personalised Notebook for Brides from Sloane Stationery, £49

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Friday 6 March 2015

Boho Wedding Dresses from Saja Wedding

One of my favourite wedding dress designers is Saja Wedding. Based in New York, they're renowned for their gorgeous ethereal gowns, and their cute flagship shop is in seriously cool NoLita. On my wedding dress trip to New York, I tried on all their gowns, and each one is more stunning than the next. So when I spotted this fabulous shoot by one of my favourite photographers, Jose Villa, it was a shoe-in for a Before the Big Day blog post. Which dress would you pick? Other details I'm loving include the simple oak-leaf bouquet {fab for autumn brides}, the bright red lipstick teamed with peonies, and the unusual thistle bouquet. Stunning!

Thursday 5 March 2015

Glamorous Ombre Wedding Dresses

Ombre is a huge wedding trend right now, with every wedding detail, from stationery to flowers featuring a graduated tint. Even long hair is getting the ombre treatment. But this is the first time I've seen an ombre wedding dress. Ideal for brides looking to stand out from the crowd, these wedding gowns by Ouma are guaranteed to wow your guests. The stunning skirt features layer upon layer of hand-dyed tulle to create a full and unique silhouette, gradually fading up from a vibrant pink, to coral, to peach and finally topped with a beautiful silk white. Pair it with a v-neck t-shirt for a fun casual wedding party or glam it up with a corset and glitter heels. Check out my Pinterest board for more ombre wedding theme ideas.

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Wednesday 4 March 2015

DIY Luxury Wedding: Beaded Belts & Accessories

If you're a bride with eyes bigger than your budget, you're going to adore my latest wedding discovery. Take one simple, wallet-friendly wedding dress, and add one of these incredible beaded trims by Allyson James, and BOOM! you've got a luxury-looking wedding gown without the price tag. Allyson James' beaded trims are made out of exactly the same quality trims you see on designer gowns such as Vera Wang and Monique Lhuillier, they're hand-sewn with the finest crystals, pearls, beads and sequins. Trims arrive ready to be sewn into sashes, belts, headpieces, bouquet wraps...whatever your DIY dream desires. Time to let your wedding imagination run wild!

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Monday 2 March 2015

A Pastels & Vintage Themed Wedding with a Mori Lee Gown - Part 2

It's wedding inspiration time for DIY brides. Gorgeous couple Hannah and Ben roped in the help of all their family and friends to create a stunning, personalised wedding day. By choosing to host their wedding reception in a marquee in the garden of stunning venue Hill Place, they could let their imagination run wild. Hannah chose a country garden wedding theme, and collected vintage floral fabric scraps, which her friend Polly sewed into over 60m of pretty bunting! Friends and family also helped with making their wedding cake, arranging their flowers, designing the table plan and personalising each and every place marker. I love the pretty pastel theme and the way the wedding favours and table names reflect Hannah and Ben's love of music. We named our wedding tables after vegetables - I wish we'd been more creative! Gorgeous pictures published with thanks to Greg Thurtle from TP Photography.

My husband Ben and I got married on 30th July 2011 at Hill Place in Swanmore, a beautiful Georgian Country Villa set in 20 acres of beautiful park land.  Our wedding photographer was Greg Thurtle from TP Photography, who was brilliant and captured some amazing candid shots. Looking through the photos, they are all so personal and encapsulate the day perfectly. 

I had five bridesmaids, they wore knee length, chiffon and halter neck dresses in dusky pink and sapphire blue. They were also from Brides of Southampton. I originally said that they could wear anything pink or blue, and took them to the shop to try on whatever they fancied...they all loved the same dress!

A Pastels & Vintage Themed Wedding with a Mori Lee Gown

Take one dramatic wedding venue, add a DIY bride bursting with wedding ideas, and a pretty village church, and you've created wedding blogger's heaven. Hannah and Ben celebrated their big day at the gorgeous Hill Place in Hampshire, and got seriously creative with their wedding day, adding more DIY details than you can shake a stick at! Just wait for the reception details in Part 2, it's a DIY bride's dream. Hannah chose a country garden wedding theme with pretty pastels as her colour palette, which she carried throughout her wedding details, including bridesmaids dresses, bouquet and bunting. Her pretty up-do is stunning, and I love her traditional Princess-cut wedding gown, complete with the train she thought she didn't want! Other fun wedding ideas include the vintage car and camper van, and the sweet-smelling dried lavender decorating the church. Stunning pictures published with thanks to Greg Thurtle from TP Photography. Don't miss the reception details, coming soon later today.

My husband Ben and I got married on 30th July 2011 at Hill Place in Swanmore, a beautiful Georgian Country Villa set in 20 acres of beautiful park land.

We chose the venue because of the location and because it was so beautiful. Ben and I both grew up within a mile of Hill Place and the area has special significance to us both. We met at Swanmore Secondary School when we were 11, and we spent our teenage year s in the area. When we saw Hill Place, we immediately fell in love with it. It was so beautiful and Will and Rebecca Dobson (the owners) were two of the nicest people we have met! They were so laid back and accommodating, we knew that this was the venue for us.

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