December 11th, 2013 | Julia Braime
Did you catch our discussion post on wedding favours yesterday afternoon? After this afternoon’s feature, I think a few more of you might be “in favour”…
If you came along to one of the blog’s fabulous Brides Up North Wedding Exhibitions this year, you will have found some very gorgeous little branded treats in your VIP goody bag, courtesy of our Featured Supplier Wedding In A Teacup. We do hope that you liked them! (If you missed our Brides Up North Wedding Exhibition season in 2013 – how could you?! – or simply fancy doing it all over again, click here for details of our calendar in 2014… and to get your hands on one of those goody bags).
Wedding In A Teacup is based down South, but ships their pretty packages (and they are pretty, let me tell you) all over the UK, so whether you live in Leeds or East Lothian, they have it covered. You’ll be dying to get into their online store and see their treasures for yourselves (especially with an exclusive 10% discount for Brides Up North readers when you enter the code UPNORTH10 at checkout!), so let’s meet the lady behind it all…
Tell us a little bit about yourself and how Wedding In A Teacup got started?
Hi, my name is Hester; I live in Brighton and run Wedding in a Teacup from an office near the Pavilion. A little over two years ago I was in my spare bedroom, surrounded by boxes of wedding goodies, staring at the computer screen and biting my nails over whether my tiny company was ready to ‘go live’ yet…
Nine months before that, I’d been working in the fashion industry; I felt I had a good grounding in what was needed to run a small company; I dreamt of going it alone. But what could I do that hadn’t been done to death? Then the man in my life suddenly proposed, and when I got over the shock, I set about planning our nuptials! We’d agreed to get married that same summer so I had to move fast. I got addicted to wedding blogs showcasing real–life brides who’d created their big day with originality and flair, but when I searched myself for the products to re-create some of these ideas I was met with not much more than the usual plastic, white, diamantes and organza…
That’s when the lucky penny dropped! Surely there were other brides-to-be like me, slogging round vast on-line warehouses, desperate to find the kinds of quirky, stylish, original goodies I was hunting for. I took the risk, and started Wedding in a Teacup. So far it’s paid off wonderfully. The only downside is that my husband will insist on taking the credit for the original idea…
Tell us about Wedding In a Teacup, your mantra and what you are all about?
One of my main aims was to create a great place to visit online – one that will inspire and excite brides to be. We take lots of care with our blogs, blurb and photos – we want to give inspiring, helpful, honest service that way. I would never stock something I didn’t like, just because I thought it might sell. And I’m a lot of a perfectionist. For example, I’ve searched for ‘wedding party’ mugs for ages and I’ve only just found the ones that are ‘right’!
I put a lot of emphasis on ethics and sustainability, buying recycled and made in the UK when I can. We also love the idea that our goodies aren’t throwaway; it’s great to keep using the tea-light holders that glittered at your wedding feast, or to transform a noticeboard into a seating plan board, and then take it home afterwards, steeped in memories of your special day.
What sort of products are available to buy in your online shop?
We reckon we stock just about everything apart from the cake, the ring, and the dress! We have a vibrant Stationery section, with unusual and original invitations. Favours are big for us – we think the divine is in the detail, and that those little finishing touches are all-important. Brides love the personalised touch, and many of our favours carry the couples’ names and dates. We’re thrilled that we’ve made the final for the Wedding Ideas Awards 2014 in the category of Best Special Touches!
Our Gifts section is eclectic; some hand made for us, or specifically for the customer, some bought in; and we search out unusual and fabulous decorations everywhere we can.
But maybe what sets us most apart is our strong “Get Creative’ section, where the creative, handy bride can find everything she needs to fashion her day, her way – and get support from us in how to do it.
Tell us a little about your favourite products…
Favours? I’m going to choose the personalised badges here, because they really punch above their weight! As place settings, then ice breakers, and then lovely take home favours, they’re original and fun. Whenever we make a batch of badges, we goo over “nanna’ and “emily and bump’ and giggle over the ruder ones – you can really picture how a wedding is going to be, from the list of names you get sent.
Stationery? I’ll shamelessly flag up our two new invitations here. I’m delighted to add a fourth member to our unique charm invitations – this one with a lucky horseshoe charm. And in complete contrast, our stylish blackboard invitation, complete with lover’s arrow.
Décor? We’re currently gunning for paper – it’s light, bright, economical and ethical too! From candle bags that spell out the couple’s names to bold tassel garlands, from cute little owls to retro chains and bunting, we’re covered in paper …..
Gifts? We’re very happy that our jewellery section keeps growing. We search out lovely sterling silver necklaces and then design a classy and exclusive card to present them on; for the bridesmaids, the flower girl, or just that someone special, all presented in a lovely brown kraft gift box.
Get Creative? It was a big thrill when we realised how versatile the old-fashioned doily was, and found the perfect NY supplier of some very stylish ones in white and metallic! Plus we’re keen on ribbon and are currently adding four fab new designs– seascape, magic keys, music notes and real bees – to this section.
What is your bestselling product?
It is hard to pin down one bestseller as things seem to go in waves! All of our personalised favours (seed packets, stickers, jam jars and badges) do very well, and our lovebirds stationery design is a firm favourite.
We love your “Inspire Me” section – tell us how that works?
Thank you! Themes began to emerge with the products we were choosing and creating – seaside, love birds, travel and so on – so we grouped these together under suitable headings. Not at all ‘matchy’, just a place where brides can browse and get ideas for how a light-hearted, themed effect might be created and see all of these products presented together. It’s also where we showcase our growing classy hen do collection!
Tell us a little about your blog and what Brides can find there?
We really love doing the blog, and wish we had time to do it more often! It’s really what our site is all about – collating ideas and inspirational images that suggest ways to use and present our products. One of my favourites are the mood boards – it must be my fashion background! I always create a mood board before designing a new invitation – it inspires me and spurs me on. Increasingly, brides are kindly sending us photos of their day which is such a thrill, and I love blogging these too. We also give recipes and creative DIY ideas, we’ve written about the history of the horseshoe in weddings, and we’ve shared our passion for bees! Basically, we hope our blogs give ideas, share information, and are fun to read!
What stationery and décor trends have been popular in 2013 and what trends do you see emerging in 2014 and beyond?
I’m not a huge believer in following trends on your wedding day – it’s your day so it should reflect you as a couple, not what is trendy at the time! Having said that, there are always new things that come through and take off simply because they are gorgeous and a great idea. I think tassel garlands will overtake bunting in 2014, and that the handmade vibe will still be going strong; because the personal touch will never go out of fashion!
Can you do a discount for Brides Up North readers?
Yes! We can offer 10% off for your readers – simply enter the code UPNORTH10 at checkout.
What can Brides Up North expect when they use your site and service?
They can expect to be inspired and delighted, to browse with ease and pleasure, and then to order with confidence. Any questions they have, they can expect a fast and helpful response. Then they can expect a beautifully wrapped parcel of goodies to land on their doorstep!
How can Brides Up North get in touch with you/ find out more?
Would you like to see your real wedding, love story, styled shoot, forthcoming event or wedding business featured on Brides Up North? Contact Brides Up North for real wedding and features submissions or details of our advertising packages.contact us to be featured on brides up north
Former lawyer and bride to be Julia founded Brides Up North in 2010 with a chip on her shoulder. Frustrated by the poor Northern presence in glossy bridal magazines and online, she decided to do something about it herself. Astounded by the rapid growth of her blog and brand, Julia now manages Brides Up North’s online content alongside their busy wedding exhibition season, industry events and related commissions. And she’s always, always, got a new project on the go…