Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

beauty queen: say hello to make-up by jo

January 30th, 2018 | Rachel Parry

CARRO Studio (3)

All brides want to look their very best on their wedding day and so prior to the big day they’ll want to pull together their very own #glamsquad who will help them to achieve that goal.

A professional makeup artist tends to part of such a group – someone who knows all the best tips, tricks, trends and products, and who can apply makeup with ultimate staying-power that will look fabulous both in person and on camera!

One lady who has all these super skills and pro knowledge is our wonderful Sponsor, North-East based makeup artist, Jo Leversuch of Make-Up By Jo.

Having made up hundreds of happy brides, worked for top brands and on the models of London, Paris, New York and Milan Fashion Weeks, Jo’s portfolio speaks for itself but for those wanting to find out more about this talented lady, we’ve invited her to the blog this afternoon to tell all about her services and style.

Images for UNVEILED Magazine by Carro Studio & GASP Photography.

Jo Leversuch (1)

Can you tell us a little about your background and how you came to be in the wedding industry?

jo says: My background began with Lancome around 20 years ago and throughout the years I have worked in the fashion and beauty industry. About ten years ago I met celebrity make-up artist Ariane Poole whom I assisted and was mentored by her over the years. Around seven years ago I came into the wedding industry through meeting photographers, wedding suppliers and wedding venues.

Can you give us an overview of the services that you offer and the area that you cover?

I offer a bespoke service to all my brides with my in-depth knowledge within the industry and experience I have to offer. My services cover makeup for the bride and the bridal party for the wedding day, and if the bride requires my services for the whole day, then this can be arranged too. I also offer private one to one make-up lessons as well, which is perfect for brides who would like to apply their own makeup or that are getting married abroad.

CARRO Studio (1)

How far in advance would you advise brides to book a makeup artist?

Makeup application is exceptionally popular for wedding days now, so I would highly recommend to book your makeup artist as soon as you have booked your wedding venue and photographer.

Why would you recommend a bride hires in a professional to do their big day makeup rather than doing it themselves?

A professional makeup artist will have the knowledge of how much makeup to apply and also to make sure the makeup stays on all day. A professional will have full knowledge of different brands and an understanding on how this works with the photographer and hairdressers so the bride looks absolutely stunning on her day.

What should a bride look for when hiring a bridal makeup artist?

The bride should look out for recommendations from other brides, wedding venues or wedding suppliers. They should also study the style of the makeup artist and look at their website and social media for examples of work.

Jo Leversuch (2)

What is it that you love about your job and would you say that you have a signature style?

Running my business gives me a huge buzz; from travelling around the world for the catwalk shows, magazines, and also being makeup brand ambassador for Veil Cover Cream. I also truly love weddings as I want to create the prefect makeup for each bride and make them feel exceptionally beautiful. My signature style is all about the perfect skin. I am known as “Queen of Skin” and my style has a real natural aspect with a fashion edge to it.

Where do you take inspiration from? Any celebrity crushes?

I take my inspirations from working backstage on the shows in New York, London, Milan and Paris twice a year. My other inspirations are taken from every day; from the colour of flowers, nature, art, galleries, museums and travelling the world seeing different cultures. My celebrity crushes have to be the striking Helena Christensen and young Elizabeth Taylor.

CARRO Studio (2)

What makeup looks are proving particularly popular with brides at the moment?

The nude blush lipstick is a definitely popular at the moment and a strong focus on eyebrows and an element of contouring.

Where would you advise brides to seek inspiration for their bridal makeup and what other elements should they take into account when deciding on their bridal look?

I always advise my brides to truly think about them as an individual and to look at how they like to wear their own makeup. For example, if a bride always favours black eyeliner then that’s her trademark, so I would incorporate that concept in the look. I’d say to take inspiration from the season and venue they choose, look at colours of the flowers and Pinterest is the most popular site to look at.

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#getcreative: bridal beauty by aj edgar mua

January 15th, 2018 | Rachel Parry

AJ Edgar MUA (13)

While it can be tempting to have a complete beauty overhaul ahead of your big day, we believe it’s incredibly important to be the very best version of you on that special day, and not to take things too far so that you look like someone else altogether.

With this being our mantra, we’re very much in favour of our talented Sponsor Alexandra Jane Edgar’s approach to bridal beauty: “you wear the makeup, it does not wear you”. For, as Alexandra explains in today’s post, hiring a professional to create your wedding makeup doesn’t mean changing the way you look, but enhancing your features and complementing your big day plans, with luxury brand products that are kind to skin and long-lasting.

As an out and out pro, with experience of working for and training with some of the world’s most luxurious brands and cosmetics houses, we’ve invited Alexandra to the blog today to tell us more about her fabulous makeup services while also sharing a few top tips and tricks along the way…

With images by Joe Laws Photography.

AJ Edgar MUA (2)

Can you tell us a little about your background and how you came to be in the wedding industry?

alexandra says: Yearning for a creative career I began working in the cosmetics industry 16 years ago. I have represented the world’s most luxurious brands and cosmetics houses and have had extensive training throughout my career from the industry leading names, such as Lisa Eldridge, Francois Nars, Eve Nom and Sylvie Chantecaille. I have been so fortunate to come into the wedding industry purely through client demand for my services on their big day.

Can you give us an overview of the services that you offer and the area that you cover?

I travel throughout the North East to your bridal venue on your big day. I am based full time in an award-winning wedding and portrait photography studio in Newcastle Upon Tyne. This is where you can come for your makeup trial and very excitingly receive a digital photograph. This is a wonderful opportunity to see how you will photograph on your wedding day whilst giving you a confidence boost and a little experience being in front of a camera. We even host hen party experiences, which is fun opportunity to meet us and trial your big day look, with a fabulous photo shoot of you and your bridal party.

AJ Edgar MUA (7)

How can brides-to-be prepare for a wedding makeup trial?

Start to consider your wedding day look when you have chosen your palette, flowers etc. so we can complement your ideas. It really is important to know you are going to look and feel your best on your wedding day. I can then also advise you on skincare to really get your complexion radiant in plenty of time for your big day. Afterwards, just relax and look forward to your wedding morning.

Why would you recommend a bride hires in a professional makeup artist for their big day?

Brides tell me they could not have achieved the same look themselves and they all enjoy a professional, pampering and relaxing service on their wedding morning.

AJ Edgar MUA (14)

What should a bride look for when hiring a makeup artist?

It is your day! You need a good relationship with any professional to feel happy and confident.  Experience is essential. I use luxury brands of skincare and makeup and I create looks for ladies of all ages every day.

What would you say is the best part of your job and what you excel at?

I love meeting new people and being a part of your most special day is so rewarding and the feedback from my brides and the bridal party is so positive and encouraging. I am told from my clients that they do not feel any makeup on their skin so they can just feel and be themselves. This is definitely my signature style – you wear the makeup, it does not wear you. Making a woman feel transformed, beautiful and her best is extremely empowering.

AJ Edgar MUA (1)

Where do you look to for inspiration?

I work in such a creative space, as a team we are constantly challenging ourselves with new looks, lighting techniques, photographic editing. We pore over fashion magazines and Instagram for inspiration and bounce lots of ideas around the studio and on location. We never stop creating – #getcreative is our thing. I recently created a stunning Baroque inspired look for a shoot for Kathryn Russell, an incredible couture bridal gown designer who is based in Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne.

What bridal makeup looks are in vogue currently?

Brides always tend to require timeless and classic makeup for their wedding day. I’ve recently noticed an increase in brides requiring elements of glitter and sparkle into their looks too.

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new year offer: caroline castigliano x omniya

January 12th, 2018 | Rachel Parry

Simplicity with Juliet Cape

We’re bringing you an extra post this lunchtime with details of a super-special new year offer courtesy of our wonderful Sponsor and leading British bridal designer, Caroline Castigliano.

To celebrate the start of 2018, Caroline and her team are offering brides-to-be a fantastic shopping experience at their Knightsbridge flagship store.

During appointments, brides will be able to sip on champagne as they are guided through their consultation assisted by experienced wedding stylists, who are all pros in bringing each bride’s individual big day vision to life.

And as an extra special treat, Caroline has teamed up with OMNIYA, the leading mediclinic in Knightsbridge, to offer brides-to-be a fantastic opportunity to prepare their skin and body ahead of their dream day. Quite literally the best January gift a bride could wish for!

Those who order a full-price bridal gown from Caroline Castigliano’s Knightsbridge store up until 31st January 2018, will receive a complimentary 30-minute face consultation and will also be given the opportunity to have six facials for the price of three at OMNIYA, a fantastic saving of 50% off.

To make an appointment at the Caroline Castigliano flagship store, call 0207 590 9120 or request via their website.

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be beautiful: say hello to becca hunton hair & makeup

January 11th, 2018 | Rachel Parry

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If there’s one day you should be pampered and preened celebrity style, it’s your wedding day – and so a professional hair and makeup artist is a must in our books!

Not only are these pros up to date with all the latest looks, but they have the skills, products and tools to keep your beauty game strong all-day long.

Today on the blog we’re catching up with one of our fabulous Sponsors who has 15 years’ experience in the industry, having worked for top brands and national fashion events before focusing on the wedding industry to make brides look and feel their most beautiful.

So, say hello to the lovely Becca Hunton – a Yorkshire-based hair stylist and makeup artist who has a particular passion for bohemian and vintage looks, and who is here today to tell us all about her services while passing on some real beauty advice gems, so prepare to take note ladies…

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How long have you been in the industry for, can you tell us a little about your background?

becca says: I’ve been in the hair and makeup industry since leaving school at 16. Over the past 15 years I’ve gained so much knowledge and experience. I absolutely love my job and I couldn’t think of doing anything else. Over the years I’ve gained a diploma at London College of Fashion. I worked for Toni & Guy – a real high point of my career was working on shows at London Fashion Week for Toni & Guy’s styling team. This had been a dream of mine since being very young and watching the clothes show every Sunday. I regularly attend courses at the Illamasqua School of Makeup, keeping my techniques up to date.  I kind of fell into the wedding industry but I couldn’t happier. There’s no better feeling than making a bride feel her very best on her most important day.

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Can you give us an overview of the services that you offer and the area that you cover?

When booking me you can choose a bespoke package to suit your big day. Whether it be I just come in the morning and get you all ready, or I can stay until after the photos for any needed touch ups. I also offer a full day package to have me on hand throughout the day, I can give you an evening look and I can also offer hair and makeup touch ups for the guests, getting them in the party mood for the night ahead.

I’m based in Northallerton and cover the surrounding area, the Yorkshire Dales, York and as far as Leeds, Newcastle or Durham.  I can travel further afield, or abroad, which is something that can be discussed.

How far in advance would you advise brides to book a makeup artist and hair stylist?

I advise booking as early as you can, dates fill up extremely fast. Even as much as two years in advance.

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Why would you recommend a bride hires in a professional to do their hair and makeup rather than doing it themselves?

By hiring a professional hair and makeup artist you’re taking the stress out of your morning and receiving VIP treatment on that most important day. Your hair and makeup will last all day and you will look your very best on your wedding photos. I always recommend a trial before the big day too, so we can plan out exactly what we are doing.

What should a bride look for when hiring a makeup artist / hair stylist?

When choosing your hair and makeup artist, choose somebody who reflects your tastes and style. It’s very personal to you and you want somebody who understands what suits you and your tastes. Websites, Instagram and Pinterest will give you a good idea of the person you’re about the hire.

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What is it that you love about your job and would you say that you have a signature style?

I’m very versatile and love creating all sorts of different looks, but I’d say I attract a bohemian or vintage type of bride. I’m a hippie at heart and think that shines through my work.

Where do you take inspiration from? Any celebrity crushes?

I have a few celebrity crushes and style icons. I love how quirky Helena Bonham Carter looks and her crazy, dishevelled hair. I also love how effortlessly beautiful Sienna Miller can be, she always looks so natural and bohemian. I also follow a lot of Fearne Cotton, I love her style and how she puts outfits together. She always looks fab!

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all wrapped up: festive beauty

December 13th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth

BUN

image source

The festive season is upon us, and that can only mean one thing – it’s time to p-a-r-t-y!!

If you’re anything like us, you will have already purchased your festive threads during a frenzied online clothing splurge prompted by the Black Friday sales. So, with our party attire now sitting pretty in our wardrobes, we thought now a good time to focus on fitting makeup for the Christmas and New Year season.

This is probably the one time of the year when we can muster up the confidence to be more daring with our beauty look and go all-out glam, experimenting with those top beauty blogger trends we’ve been secretly crushing on over the past few months.

Ultra-glam makeup isn’t just for Christmas though…it’s also perfect for winter weddings! And so today on the blog, we’re sharing a few of our favourites that are ideal for brides who wants to inject some festive flair into their big day look.

Urban Decay smoky Chanel Rouge Allure

smoky eyes

Who doesn’t love a smoky eye? It’s an uber-flattering beauty trend, whether you go for a pristine finish with plenty of definition or for a much softer ‘I just woke up like this’ smudged look. Instead of black, try charcoal grey, mauve or even taupe for a more natural look. Our top pick? Urban Decay’s Naked Smoky Palette has got all the essentials you need to nail this look in one handy kit, with a sultry mix of gorgeous matte, satin and sparkly shades to choose from.

black eyeliner

It’s one trend that never goes out of fashion – the classic winged eyeliner. In the winter months, dare to go bold with your liner and pair your angled flick with copper, plum or teal for all-out drama. For peepers with impact – stick with a classic black hue, or for something more understated, go for grey or brown. Bobbi Brown’s Long-wear Gel Eyeliner hasn’t won countless awards for nothing and comes in a dinky little pot, offering the precision of a liquid liner with the effortlessness of a gel-based formula. Simply draw on with a fine brush for a budge- and smudge-free heavy line.

Hello Beauty

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glossy lids

If getting your sparkle on seems too much like an unwanted throwback to your 18-year-old self, then the high shine and glossy route is a more demure, grown-up approach to your festive makeup. Fresh and dewy – glossy eyelids work beautifully with lashings of black mascara and eyeliner for a tres simple yet sophisticated look. Our go-to product for some glossy action is the YSL Eye Gloss Smudger, which is applied as a top coat over your eyeshadow of choice for a high shine, polished finish.

pink blush

In the summer, we all like to channel the bronzed goddess look, but come winter, it’s time for our natural skin tones to take centre stage. Pale skin with pops of colourful makeup contrasts beautifully with a dark and wintery backdrop. We say, embrace your inner Snow White and keep your complexion fair, with a subtle flush of colour to your face. Our top pick is Illamasqua’s Cream Blusher in Laid, swept across the apples of your cheeks for a highly pigmented yet natural rosy-pink glow.

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blissed out bride: seaham hall

November 24th, 2017 | Julia Braime

seaham-hall

Behind the scenes here at Brides Up North HQ, things are pretty busy! We’re already working a year ahead to bring you almost 40 sensational (and each unique and different!) bespoke bridal shows for 2018 and work has started in earnest on Issue 09 of our gorgeous bi-annual glossy magazine, UNVEILED, out in March. Add an impending site relaunch (yes (!), watch this space), a brand spanking new digital platform for UNVEILED (launching next week people!) and all the juggle that comes with being a mummy of two littles away from the office, and this editor was seriously in need of some R&R.

So, when the lovely people at Seaham Hall in Country Durham waved an overnight spa stay for two my way, I grabbed the husband, set the out of office and used up some babysitting credits. It was time to test out Seaham’s offering to make sure that you lovely Brides Up North stay blissed out in the run up to your big day and beyond.

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Now, this place is incredible and some. Recently awarded the Conde Nast Johansens UK Readers’ Award 2017 (and from the facilities and service you can see why) this coastal gem is full of charm.

Pre-stay, the hotel’s website had boasted that, ‘set within 37 acres of delightful gardens in a stunning cliff top location overlooking the sea and the coast of the Durham Heritage Coastline, Seaham Hall is a beautiful Georgian Mansion ideally located in Durham for a luxurious overnight retreat’. They weren’t wrong.

On the menu for us was a stay in one of Seaham Hall’s beautiful suites, decorated artfully in shades of grey, teal and a zingy yellow – with enough wallpapers, cushions and objets d’art to keep this interiors magpie very happy indeed; a spa day for two (is it a bit cringy to read your own magazine by the pool? Maybe, but I don’t care!) with some delightful treatments thrown in; pre-dinner mojitos delivered to our suite (nice touch!) and a fine dining dinner in Byron’s Restaurant, followed by the best night’s sleep that I’d had in a long, long time.

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Byron’s Restaurant has recently been awarded a 1st in the Taste Durham Awards, recognising the hotel’s hard work towards supporting and championing local producers and suppliers. My husband and I shared the Chateaubriand, and can vouch for its flavour, freshness and presentation. And although we didn’t try it ourselves, the dishes served in the venue’s Pan-Asian Restaurant ‘The Ozone’ located within the Serenity Spa looked absolutely delightful.

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Now onto that spa. As well as a fully equipped gym (which I didn’t try out – my bad!) the sensational Serenity Spa boasts a 20 metre pool with massage stations; hamman with snail showers and jacuzzi, Asian herbal samarium, salt sauna, Indian steam chamber, hydrotherapy pool, ice fountain, plunge pools and my favourite bit – outdoor hot tubs.

The hubby and I spent a glorious few hours trying out the various heat experiences, bubbling in the hot tubs and relaxing poolside, before it was time for our treatments.

The Serenity Spa offers unique and bespoke holistic treatment rituals from Asia that deliver luxurious, indulgent experiences. Their therapists are chosen not only for their ability but their intuition to your individual needs and the treatments tailored specifically to you. Just lovely!

To aid my too-much-screen-time and sugar skin, I chose a Sunari Prescriptive Facial, which promised to reawaken and rejuvenate my skin with a holistic techinque customised for my skin’s specific needs. Naturally active ingredients were custom blended for intensive exfoliation and renewal; and Seaham Hall’s signature MarMassage (pressure point stimulation) completed the experience, for newly radiant skin. I was glowing!

The hubby meanwhile was treated to a Serenity Signature Massage, a full body massage which unlocks tension and induces a sense of relaxation, wellness and inner calm.

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I’d wholeheartedly recommend Seaham Hall for a pre-wedding break to bliss out with the girls or reconnect with your hubby to be amid the planning madness. This would also be the ideal spot for a “just because” romantic break (we are all about those here at Brides Up North HQ!) or a really delightful minimoon.

And if you’ve fallen as much in love as we have here at Brides Up North, why not really commit? Seaham Hall also plays host to a number of luxury weddings a year. Offering exclusive use weddings and ceremonies, a wedding at Seaham Hall would truly be an occasion to remember.

For more information visit www.seaham-hall.co.uk

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