Showing posts with label Grey. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Grey. Show all posts

Wednesday 27 May 2020

This Wedding Dress Will Make You Consider Going Grey

For the last decade modern brides have been throwing tradition to the wind, and choosing different coloured dresses. White always symbolised virginity, innocence and purity, but now that women are making their own choices and getting married later, those messages seem pretty out of date.

Wedding dress styles evolve in much the same way as mainstream fashion, and the big designers create several collections each year. In the midst of all the creams and whites, they usually add in a wild card gown, and it's always fun to see what they come up with each season. This autumn, Pronovias are stocking a selection of metallic gowns and US brand BHLDN have even created a black wedding dress.

Here at Before the Big Day, we've fallen for this gorgeous Anna Campbell creation, called the Indigo Midnight Empress. Anna is an Australian designer, but you can buy her gowns in Blackburn Bridal in London. Autumn and winter brides will feel the chill, so we suggest pairing it with this cosy grey fur coat, which would look gorgeous in your outdoor portraits. 

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Tuesday 4 August 2015

A Pretty Vintage Wedding with a Brownie Wedding Cake

Take the prettiest of pink details, gorgeous Art Deco bridesmaids gowns, and a stunning English rose bride, and you've got wedding heaven. Lovely Nicola and James celebrated their wedding day at Dulwich College, and I've fallen for its stunning historic rooms, and lovely grand staircase. Nicola chose a pretty vintage feel for her big day, and spent months planning DIY ideas and creative projects on Pinterest. The end result is a gorgeous wedding day with tonnes of stealworthy wedding ideas. My favourite details? Nicola's elegant chignon and veil combo, her beautiful Sarah Seven gown with its lace back, and the white taxi transport! Beautiful pictures by Lily Sawyer Photography. Be sure to check out Lily's blog - I'm a huge fan of her work. Don't miss the wedding reception pictures - coming later today.

We celebrated our wedding at Dulwich College on the 23rd May, which was just around the corner from James and my first home. We'd always thought it to be a beautiful place, whenever we walked past on a sunny afternoon. 

Friday 29 May 2015

My Secret Garden Wedding in a Provence Chateau - The Reception

Our wedding reception passed in a flash! I think every bride and groom feels that their big day passes too quickly, partly because you have to step away at one stage for your wedding photographs. We were thrilled with our portraits by Chloé from Caught the Light, and it's definitely worth making time for your photographer. You'll see in this blog post, all the little extras that I added to personalise our big day. We chose a Secret Garden theme, as we hosted our reception in an historic walled garden. Our colour palette was soft grey, pink and sage green, and I chose a key motif, which appeared on all the stationery, place-markers and we gave each guest a vintage key as a wedding favour. I bought grey and white striped straws, and made little drinks flags to go in our signature cocktails. Looking back - I can't believe how many details I managed to squeeze into one day! These are the reception pictures, you can see the ceremony pictures here.

We celebrated our wedding on 28th May 2011 in a tiny French village called Puyricard, just outside Aix-en-Provence. We hired a private house called Château Grimaldi for three days.

The walled gardens inspired me to choose a secret garden theme, with a key motif. Our colour palette was soft grey, dusky pink and sage green.

Thursday 28 May 2015

My Secret Garden Wedding in a Provence Chateau - The Ceremony

As promised, I'm marking our fourth wedding anniversary by republishing our photographs from our French wedding. It's crazy how quickly the time has gone! Although this wasn't our legal wedding, it's the one that felt most real. We invited ninety of our closest friends and family out to Provence for a three day party, and I loved every minute. As a wedding blogger, I spent many days agonising over which theme to choose. In the end our stunning venue, with its walled grounds, led me to pick a Secret Garden theme, and a colour palette of soft grey, dusky pink and sage green. We had a key motif which appeared on all the invitations, place markers, programmes and pashmina favour tags. There were endless wedding details, all captured perfectly by our brilliant wedding photographer Chloé from Caught the Light and my friend Jemma Harding Photography. Four years on, it's true what they say - your pictures are the lasting memories of your wedding day, so it's worth hiring the best.

Wednesday 29 April 2015

A 'Blooming' New Forest Autumn Wedding with DIY Details - Part 2

Take one wedding florist, add a graphic designer husband-to-be, and a group of insanely talented guests, and you have a wedding-made-in-heaven. Jen and Lee celebrated their big day in the autumn, and completely mixed up their wedding schedule, to make sure they didn't lose the light for their pictures. This inspired decision meant the party started straight away, and the lovely Ben Goode got to take these stunning portrait pictures in a gorgeous golden light. It's definitely an idea to steal if you're planning an autumn or winter wedding. As long as you don't mind seeing each other before the ceremony, then it's a winner! There's so many other brilliant details, you'll want to save every shot - from their giant, fairground-style, illuminated initials, to the CD favours made to look like mini-vinyls, and the chocolate brownie pyramid wedding cake. And did I mention Jen is a florist? Wedding flowers to die for! If you missed Part 1, don't!

Tuesday 28 April 2015

A 'Blooming' New Forest Autumn Wedding with DIY Details

I absolutely L-O-V-E it when a Before the Big Day bride gets in touch with me and asks if I'd like to feature her wedding. It's like being included on the guest list! Lovely Jennifer read this blog in the build up to her wedding day, and sent over the beautiful pictures by Ben Goode. I'm in love with every one, and completely obsessed with all the perfectly DIY'd details. Jen is a florist, so obviously the flowers were sorted, her husband Lee is a graphic designer and hand-made all of the fabulous stationery, a friend made the wedding cake, another friend DJ'd, and Jen's mum is a writer, and crafted a very funny reading for the ceremony out of all their guests' tips. Put together this saved them some pennies, but also made the day so much more personal. There's so much stealworthy wedding inspiration, I'm finding it hard to know where to start.....maybe with Jen's stunning high-street wedding dress, but don't miss the fun vintage VW camper-van, the locally-bought bridesmaid gowns, the flowery cocktails, and most of all the incredible wedding flowers - all designed by Jen herself. Such a dreamy wedding - more to come in Part 2 later today!

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 we're talking! Gorgeous photographs as ever from the hugely talented team over at Stephanie Williams Photography.

Tuesday 22 July 2014

A Pretty Pastel Wedding with a Vera Wang Gown

A wedding in paradise is a pretty good start to married life! This heavenly Hawaiian wedding has made me wish for warmer climes and a beachside big day. I'm loving the breezy blue-grey bridesmaid dresses {by Jenny Yoo}, bride Tracy's stunning ruffled Vera Wang gown and the fabulous outdoor ceremony. Add the white peony bouquets, and orchids in Tracy's hair, and this wedding ticks every one of my boxes. Fabulous pictures published with thanks to the lovely Jen Huang Photography.

Tuesday 17 December 2013

A Welsh Countryside Wedding with a Pretty Pink Theme - The Reception

Brides planning a marquee wedding are going to L-O-V-E the inspiration they get from this big day. Instead of a shabby chic or rustic look, Pippa and Martyn chose to go for glamour, and created the most fabulous look for their marquee. They didn't spend money on favours or an expensive wedding cake, saving their pennies instead for the most incredible flower displays, designed by The Bay Tree. I love the luxurious elegance of the pink and white table arrangements, and the gorgeous glass roofed reception-area of the marquee. Other stealworthy ideas include the chalk-board labels on the wine coolers, which doubled as table names, and the pink fizz cocktails, in keeping with the colour theme. A big thank you to Lucy Wallace Photography for her stunning pictures!

We got married in Ewenny in South Wales. The church was right next to my parents' house, so it had a special place in my heart {it was also where my husband proposed to me}. Our reception was in a marquee in a field behind my parents house.

We wanted our wedding to have a strong sense of family, so a marquee close to the church and my parents house was a natural choice. The idea of having a blank canvas was really exciting, I could let my imagination run wild!

A Welsh Countryside Wedding with a Pretty Pink Theme

Is there anything more romantic than a horse-drawn carriage? The wedding transport is just one of the things that makes this big day stand out, along with the pretty-as-a-picture flowers, stunning Pronovias wedding gown, and dramatic marquee reception. Pippa and Martyn chose to make their wedding flowers their biggest wedding detail, and called in the talents of Bryan Bird, the florist at The Bay Tree in Cowbridge in Wales. The end result is a stunning array of blooms, including lily-of-the-valley, sweat peas, and roses. The bouquets are beautiful, but wait until you see the reception flowers in Part 2 of this wedding - they'll blow your mind! Other details-to-steal include the bridesmaids black Dessy dresses - as Pippa says - everyone looks good in black, and she let her girls choose their style of dress -making it much more likely they'll wear them again. I also love Martyn's bespoke three-piece suit, and soft pink tie. Huge thanks to Lucy Wallace Photography for sending through her gorgeous pictures from Pippa and Martyn's big day. Stay tuned for Part 2 - the Reception - coming soon!

We got married in Ewenny in South Wales. The church was right next to my parents' house, so it had a special place in my heart {it was also where my husband proposed to me}. Our reception was in a marquee in a field behind my parents house.

To find a wedding gown, we went to Teokath, a fabulous bridal shop in Wimbledon in London, where I tried on lots of wedding dresses. I knew I wanted it to be lace, but when I tried on the Pronovias dress I loved that the grey belt made it a little different.

Thursday 5 December 2013

Real Misty Winter Wedding with a Gorgeous Short Dress

This incredible winter wedding is proof you can organise a fabulous big day in under a month! Keri and Bill originally planned to marrry in June, but they decided to bring all their family together for the holidays and celebrate both happy occasions. I've fallen for the gorgeous misty moodiness of these lovely pictures by Amy Carroll, and all the charming details. Scroll down for classic winter wedding inspiration, including DIY felt pom-poms and ring-pillow, the owl cake topper, the ruffled cake and the particularly cute 'smitten' mitton-shaped favours. Also loving the silvery and while flower arrangements by Gail VanderLaan and Keri's 50's style mid-length dress, and furry stole. Shorter wedding dresses are so this season!

Wednesday 8 May 2013

Real Lavender Barn Wedding: Alex & Paul - Reception Pictures

Before the Big Day brides are always super-creative and imaginative, when it comes to planning their weddings, so I'm thrilled to be featuring Alex and Paul's detail-filled wedding day! Alex read Before the Big Day while planning her wedding, so you'll spot lots of ideas from the blog - hello tissue pom-poms! I love how Alex planned her wedding around a central theme of lace and lavender, and a colour palette of soft grey. All the wedding details reflected the theme, creating a very put-together effect that you normally only get with a professional wedding planner. With DIY'd favours, wedding flowers, guest book thumb-print tree, candle votives wrapped with lace, confetti cones, and a blackboard table plan, Alex saved a fortune and added her own personalised touch to her big day - seriously inspirational stuff! Huge thanks to Dean Govier for his stunning wedding pictures of the day, and don't miss the video highlights from the day, in the wedding video by Family Creative. And thanks to Alex for getting in touch, and telling the story of her big day!

Paul and I actually went to university in Liverpool together, but got to know each other until we met at a party of a mutual friend in Putney nearly 7 years ago. We got engaged in Berlin in 2011, a week before my birthday; Paul had spent ages trying to find a place to propose and I thwarted every attempt,  so it was a hasty 'down-on-one-knee' on the train ride back to the airport! He'd already asked my Dad’s permission, so he didn’t want me going home 'empty-handed' so-to-speak!

Paul first gave me an Argos ring for me to wear until the real deal came along. He knew I’d want to pick my own ring as I’m very fussy! My actual engagement ring was bought a few weeks later from the oldest jeweller in Hatton Garden in London and is antique. I love that it has a story before it got to me - long may it continue!

Our photographer was Dean Govier and was beyond amazing. He was recommended to us through one of my bridesmaids who had been at a wedding he had photographed in the same area. When I saw his photos I knew he was our guy. We loved his natural style and he was such a pleasure to have around on the day and just seamlessly blended into the background. I cannot recommend him enough.

We got married on Saturday 28th July 2012 in St Mary’s Church in Whitchurch-on-Thames, which is the village I grew up in in South Oxfordshire. Our reception was nearby at Ufton Court in Berkshire. 

We looked at a few places, but it was Ufton Court which stood out. Paul was sold on Ufton straight away, but I took a little longer to come round, and to this day I’m still not sure why! The staff there were incredibly supportive and helpful. We had our reception drinks on the back terrace over-looking the walled garden and then had food, drinking and dancing in the Tithe Barn. The back terrace is my favourite part of the venue as it felt so private, and that was something we were insistent upon; we didn't want to be at a venue where other people could be wandering around having a nosey! 

The barn itself is beautiful and there are fairy lights already in situ around the beams, so all it took were some tissue pom-poms, and other bits to put our stamp on it! The giant light up letters were one of my favourite things – I loved them so much! We also added a canopy marquee onto the courtyard of the barn so that we had extra space even if it rained. Our marquee company, Magnifitents, decorated it with fairy lights and tissue pom-poms for us, and we loved it!

The general theme was centred on lavender and lace, with accents of grey. The smell of lavender reminds me of my grandmother, plus I love the colour. I also had lace on my dress and wanted to reflect that in our wedding decorations. Paul also wanted to make sure he had a 'stamp' on the day and so we incorporated his love of Tottenham FC wherever we could without it being too tacky!

For our wedding favours, we had lavender tea for the ladies, to tie in with our wedding theme, and pin badges for the boys. Paul is a HUGE Tottenham fan and wanted his personality to show throughout the day and the badges were one of them! I had the badges printed by Awesome Merchandise with the Tottenham cockerel and the words 'today I support Spurs'. Paul was amazed by how many of the guys wore them considering the rivalry between teams!

All the favours were put in pillow boxes, tied with ribbon with a tag saying either ‘brew me’ for the ladies or ‘wear me’ for the boys. All these were put together with the help of my very patient mother and my eldest niece!

We had loads of DIY projects! Tissue pom-poms {lovingly crafted by my mum!}, the favours, stationery, table plan {I painted the blackboards on our kitchen table – not advised!}, guest book thumbprint tree, candle votives wrapped with lace, confetti cones… the list is quite long! These were the parts of the planning that I equally loved, and that stressed me out! I couldn’t bear the thought of spending three times the amount on paying for someone else to do things I could do, and actually take enjoyment from doing. 

I didn't want to spend much on a wedding cake, as for me it wasn't a huge part of the day that I had imagined. So I decided to order it from M&S. However, I left it too late and had my mum frantically ringing round cake makers in the local area about two weeks before the wedding! And it actually worked out for the best as we ended up with the most amazing cake we have ever tasted! It was a rustic Victoria sponge and was just superb. Rebecca at Streatley Village Cakes did a beautiful job and set it up on the day in the barn, with fresh fruit and flowers. There were many compliments on it! One of my bridesmaids and I were shoving it in our faces at about 11pm to refuel for the dance floor!

On the whole, I loved planning my wedding, however there were elements that stressed me out! I enjoyed ensuring all the details tied together, although probably no one noticed them apart from me! All the time I spent planning, and feeling daunted, came good in the end. 

My advice for brides? The old 'take a moment to take it all in on the day' cannot be stressed enough and also to remember why you’re doing it. My favourite moment of the whole day, amongst all the little touches we had made, was actually saying my vows and meeting Paul at the altar. I would also advise brides to delegate! My sister was A-mazing throughout the whole process and on the day her and my brother-in-law were up at the venue at 7.30am making sure everything was sorted for me, and I cannot thank her enough. Also, it’s easy to say in hindsight, but try to relax in the final few weeks; I didn’t and my back went two weeks before the wedding, and I was laid up in bed for the whole week. It was my body's way of telling me enough was enough and actually helped me to let go!

We also chose to have a videographer and found a company, Family Creative, who were just starting out in the business. We were delighted with the final version, and I think I must have watched the DVD about a million times! Getting a wedding video definitely brings your day to life, and having the footage to look back on adds another dimension.

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Wednesday 24 April 2013

Real Vintage Medical Themed Wedding: Rebecca & Ben

I've made you wait, but it's finally time for the incredible wedding reception pictures from this unique medical themed wedding. Rebecca and Ben chose The Morritt in Greta Bridge in County Durham for their wedding reception, and after many months of successful bidding on eBay, Rebecca personalised her and Ben's big day with a fabulous array of wedding details, including old medicine bottles as vases, an ancient doctor's bag for wedding gifts, and vintage first aid boxes filled with sweets. Table flowers looked just-picked, with snowberries and autumn foliage to reflect the season. Instead of a traditional wedding cake, Rebecca and Ben chose their own cheeses for a tiered cheese cake, and Rebecca's parents handmade chutney as wedding favours for eating on the day. So many wonderful details, all in one wedding - it's definitely an all-time favourite for me! Huge thanks to Sharron Gibson from The Image Garden and Vanessa Adams, her second shooter, for these gorgeous wedding pictures.

Our photographer was Sharron Gibson from The Image Garden. I found her on the internet by searching for vintage-style photographers. She is actually based in the South, but came all of the way up to photograph our big day. 

Sharron was wonderful, stayed all day and evening and felt part of the wedding! She also brought an assistant photographer, Vanessa Adams, to help who was lovely. As we set off for our honeymoon 24 hours later, she had already sent me a montage of her favourite photos which I was delighted to receive.

Ben and I got married on 8th September 2012 at St Edmunds Church, Sedgefield in County Durham, followed by a reception at The Morritt, Greta Bridge.

We wanted to have a lot of people, and provide a lot of food and drink. On our budget it made sense to pick a smaller, more personal hotel that we could fill to the brim.

I had tonnes of DIY wedding projects. I wanted a table plan, but I didn't want to spend time or money on it. I found a website called Here Comes the Bride, and they suggested using a mirror. They took the measurements, and printed out {and decorated} individual cards with adhesive on the back. My mirror had a gold rim, so my Dad and I sprayed it silver! When we put it all together, it worked really well. 

When I was planning our wedding theme, my sister suggested starting with the florist and working back from there....and she was right! I met with three florists and knew instantly when I had found the right one - Adam Prest......he was AMAZING!!! He is based in a farm outside of Sedgefield where he grows some of the flowers he uses. It was great to use someone local!

I could not describe really what I wanted....but he just knew. It was his idea for grey bridesmaids dresses!!!! I said I wanted the flowers to look like I had been out in the garden and picked the flowers. I also said I did not want them to be symmetrical or all the same length or size......the rest was down to him.

He selected a rose called Amnesia, white snowberries and a silvery foliage which I loved! He also suggested candelabras of varying heights for the tables. We were both keen that every table looked different!

Our wedding favours for the men were small jars of chutney {handmade by my Mum and Dad}. They make a lot of chutney, and because we were serving cheese at the end of the meal, it was the obvious decision! We made bibs and bow ties for each of the jars, and I made small top hats for all of the men to wear at dinner, which sat on top of the jars. 

The girls' wedding favours were different. My Mum is very arty and decorated small grey boxes (from Paperchase) with tiny flowers dried from the garden. Again each one was different, and we baked individual Rolo brownies to go in them! We also printed minute recipe cards for the brownies and put them in the box.

I really wanted a vintage feel but having been to several weddings prior to ours in 2012 it was difficult to come up with something original. So I was thrilled when I discovered vintage medicine bottles on eBay. I bid on them regularly in the run up to the wedding until I had enough for four/five per table. They were only a couple of quid each and make lovely mementos!

I was keen to have something original for our wedding cards from guests, so to continue with the medical theme, I found a vintage doctor's bag (also on eBay) for only £30.

The medical dictionary was my own, and I HAD to buy the vintage medical book 'The movement of the heart and blood', as it seemed very romantic!! 

I loved organising my wedding! It was great to put a personal stamp on the day. I tried to see it as a party, rather than a wedding, and I think we managed to create that kind of atmosphere. It did however dominate the nine months between engagement and the big day, and I am glad you only have to do it once!! 

My advice to brides planning their wedding is to start early. Book in all of the big things then have a bit of a break! Use the internet. There are so many ideas and craft websites out there. If you can’t find what you want....have a go at making it!! 

Invest in your is definitely worth it!! Don’t make everything match. It was more fun having several subtle themes intermingled with each other, and it personalised the wedding more. Have a wedding's geeky, but having everything in one place makes life so much easier!

When it came to our wedding cake, we both love cheese, so we had a cheese wedding cake! You can get them in set combinations on the internet, but we were keen to pick the cheeses ourselves, so we went to a small cheese shop called Cheese on the Green in Rugby {where Ben’s parents live} and tried all of them! It was very good fun!

I got a really naff cake topper online with a bride rugby tackling the Mum hated it, but it looked really good after my florist had dressed the cake. To serve with the cheese, my Mum and Dad made chutney and fruit cake, while crackers and fruit were provided by the hotel along with our evening hog roast.

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