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rachel’s diary: team wedding is go!

September 18th, 2018 | Julia Braime

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Gotcha! The lead image on today’s post may well have caused you to double take, but Andy and I haven’t got hitched just yet! The photo was actually taken at our best friends’ wedding a few weeks ago where I was a maid of honour and Andy one of the groomsmen.

Attending four fabulous weddings this year has certainly made for very helpful research for our own big day, reaffirming the most important elements to us, where we should allocate more of the budget, where we might be able to make a saving and how to weave special touches among the proceedings.

And now, with no other weddings in the diary between now and summer 2019 we are officially next in line to become Mr & Mrs – and I feel that with less than eight months to go, we are making surprisingly good progress.

I have, however, found myself somewhat torn when writing these diary posts as I’m excited to give you updates and share my experience, but like any other bride-to-be, I don’t want to give away too many details about the big day before it’s happened, especially for those that will be attending.

Following the wedding I’ll certainly be divulging all aspects and details of the amazing suppliers we have onboard, but in the meantime, there are some elements that I think are safe to reveal…

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Since my last diary post the day invites have been sent out causing Andy to get weirdly cocker-spaniel-style excited for the post arriving each day. Every time a few more RSVPs drop through the letter box he quickly retrieves them and moves the responding guests’ names into the ‘attending’ column on one of our many planning spreadsheets. I have to say though, I adore this level of enthusiasm and organisation (if only he could take transfer such skills keeping ‘his side’ of our bedroom in order!).

Clean and elegant, we went with a personal ‘R&A’ design in a gold leaf garland for the invite with accompanying details card and RSVP sealed within a brown Kraft envelope, which should tie in nicely with other styling elements that we have planned for the wedding.

Another box ticked is Andy and his groomsmen’s suits, which he found while shopping with his best men in Manchester. It’s really important to me that Andy loves what he wears on the day as much as I love my dress and I must say, though he’s still to accessorise his outfit, he looks absolutely gorgeous in his chosen suit and picturing him in it at our chosen venue The West Mill, gives me butterflies! Finding his attire also helps to pull together the wedding colour palette a little more, though the hue of his tie is an ongoing debate!

We’ve ticked all entertainment boxes now too, with bookings for different parts of the day that we hope will reflect our musical tastes while setting the desired atmosphere and, in turn, creating memories that will last beyond the wedding.

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I’ve also recruited my #glamsquad to beautify me and my four bridesmaids – it was certainly an area where I was spoilt for choice as through both Brides Up North and UNVEILED magazine we work with some true talents of the hair and makeup industry. The two pros I’ve enlisted the skills of are Lake-District-based hair stylist Gareth Lambert of Aqua The Salon, and North East makeup artist Anna Cordelia Mason. I’ve had the pleasure of working with this dynamite duo on several occasions and I’ve found their approach and styles to be right up my street, plus they both have such lovely personalities that I know they will bring a really fun yet chilled vibe to the wedding morning.

What else? Well after letting you all know that I unexpectedly found my dream dress in record time in the summer I thought I’d move onto my accessories, starting with my shoes – and I’m thrilled to say I’ll be a Charlotte Mills bride when it comes to my big day footwear. I was keen to go to a designer that specialises in bridal shoes, rather than buy off the high street, as I know the experts in this area provide both style and comfort in their designs. As a girl that lives in trainers (all hail the Stan Smiths!) I couldn’t bare the thought of hobbling around in pain on my wedding day, though I knew I’d want a heel for added height and an elegant posture. Thanks to Charlotte I had the most amazing experience picking the perfect pair from her utterly gorgeous collection and would highly recommend others to follow in my footsteps by visiting her cute boutique in Saddleworth near Oldham or visiting one of her amazing stockists for personal on- to-one service and advice. For those coming to our Luxury Wedding Shows this season, you’re in for an extra special treat as our goody bags will include a Charlotte Mills discount voucher meaning you can bag yourself a pair of her totally dreamy heels and make a saving in the process!

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Next on my wedding to-do list is the bridesmaid dresses, an element of the planning I’m really stoked for as I’m looking to fabulous designer Rosanna Garden of Motee Maids to assist me in dressing my leading ladies. Having first met Rosanna at The White Gallery in London when she’d not long launched her amazing bridesmaid collection, I instantly fell in love with her clever customisable creations that give options on dress style, colour and delicate hand embellishment detailing, enabling individual personalities and style preferences to shine through. Furthermore, Motee Maids was named ‘Best Bridesmaid Collection of the Year’ at the 2018 Bridal Buyer Awards, just last week further cementing Rosanna’s position as a leading designer in the industry. The only problem with picking such a talent is that I will, without doubt, be enviable of my maids’ attire.

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Over the coming months we have a few more suppliers to source and meetings to arrange, including with the florist, caterer and our amazing photographer Jon of S6 Photography. And so, I guess what is safe to say is that the wedding clique is coming together, and momentum is building for the big day, though I’m eager to not wish away the run-up as it’s all part of the wedding experience and a time that I aim to absorb and enjoy!

Catch up on Rachel’s other diary entries here.

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ask the experts: lipstick & curls

March 9th, 2018 | Julia Braime

Christmas Wedding Inspiration - Amore Star Events and Charlotte Munro

There’s no one style suits all when it comes to a bride’s big day look – rather than fitting the bridal mould, we love nothing more than to see ladies reflecting their own individual styles, not only through their dress choice, but their hair and makeup too.

Whether vintage pin curls, a Hollywood red lip or winged liner to rival past-icon Amy Winehouse is your thing, you should be able to rock it every day – and that includes your wedding day. That said though, we all know the pressure of trying to perfect your look for an occasion that matters (cue pre-wedding melt-down) and so we highly advise leaving the task to the pros.

Our fabulous Sponsor Lipstick & Curls – “the hair and beauty experts” – have experienced stylists located across the country who can create looks from all across the decades – retro to modern day – and so are certainly well placed to help you brides and your #girlsquad get your glam on.

Today we’re catching up with the director and head stylist of Lipstick & Curls, Amanda Moorhouse, to find out more about their fantastic services, as well as to learn more about the latest bridal hair and makeup looks, and must-have products!

And if you like what you see here ladies, you will be excited to learn that the lovely Lipstick & Curls team is offering our readers 10% off their prices until the end of April 2018 – just mention Brides Up North when enquiring.

Now, let’s get down to beauty business…

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Can you give us a brief overview of Lipstick & Curls and the services that you offer?

amanda says: Lipstick & Curls is a unique agency of hair and makeup artists providing services across the UK. All our artists have been hand-picked to represent what we feel is the best in the business! We understand the needs of our customers and work with them closely to create a style that reflects both their image and personal style whilst working with their theme or brief. Bookings include bridal groups, parties and hen parties, cooperate events, fashion shoots and TV, music and media clients.

How many stylist are on the team and what areas do they cover?

We have grown to include more than 100 artists now covering all the main cities in the UK, Scotland, Wales, London, Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Liverpool, Oxford, Bristol, Birmingham, Nottingham, Sheffield, Hull, Brighton, Devon … and many more! We will always assign the closest artist to the location and they will make the journey to the client on the day.

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

Hair and makeup plays an important part in how you look and feel on your wedding day and we want to be part of the process. We know how important your appearance is on this special day. Our artists have years of experience working with brides and their families. They are the experts and the bride can relax on the day knowing that she is in safe hands. Additional services we provide include, eye lash extension, hair extension, airbrushing, manicure.

Can you tell us about your Deluxe Wedding Package and what it includes?

Lipstick & Curls have teamed up with some fabulous partners to offer our customers more than our award winning bridal hair and makeup services. Deluxe Classics provide beautiful classic cars, from the heyday of American motoring that offer the perfect opportunity to travel in style and arrive with an added dash of glamour on your wedding day. Hanson & Jeni of Mid Century Weddings are two of the finest vintage style photographers with 15-year experience and are internationally published, in fashion magazines and several vintage themed books. With their experience and wonderful eye for detail they will capture your beautiful day forever. Together we present a package of timeless style and sophistication to complement your day, adding a little bit of magic from the golden era. There are discounts available for booking two or all three of these services. Please email us at info@lipstickandcurls.net to discuss your requirements.

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You also offer Hen Party packages, can you tell us what these entail?

Our hen parties are always very popular as ladies always love to be pampered! We provide a wide range of services to suit the group and theme of the event; from the Classic Mini Makeover to a more Deluxe service providing both hair and makeup. Our artists have experience and skills in many areas and can provide vintage hair and makeup from all the decades, character hair and makeup, and pamper services, including hair styling, blow drying, makeovers, manicure, massage, facial and pedicures. We cater for groups of all sizes and have various packages to suit most budgets.

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

I think the bold lip is here to stay for a while! Nothing looks more wonderful than glowing healthy skin, neutral eyes (with lots of lashes of course) and a deep, bold lippy! We have seen some really daring plums and reds and even fuchsias on our brides over the last few months and they look so good with the contrast of the white ivory gown. Brightening up the whole face and even making the teeth and eyes look whiter!

Similarly, what hair styles are proving popular with brides?

I think the most popular style right now is the soft messy bun. We often add extra hair to provide even more texture and shape. This style looks great when curled and then loosely pined. A favorite of my brides is to unpin the hair at the end of the day so they have a different, even softer look for the evening!

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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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the only way is up: wedding hair inspiration

May 25th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth

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When it comes to bridal beauty – the hairstyle you choose for your special day is one of the most important decisions you’ll make.

If your hair is mid-length or longer, then chances are, you’ll be considering a pretty up do to complete your bridal look, whether you’re going for something vintage, modern, ethereal or boho.

What we love about the up do is that it helps to frame the face whilst also accentuating the neckline of a bride’s chosen dress wedding dress. Best of all, the up do should put all day and look just as glam when the clock strikes midnight as when you swished down the aisle 12 hours before.

Your hair should always complement your bridal look, so when choosing a style think about your makeup and jewellery – and how all these aspects will work alongside your gown, bouquet and overall theme.

Luckily for you, we’ve rounded up a few of our favourite bridal up dos of the moment to get you started – Pinterest boards at the ready!

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image source, photography by Tonya Pushkareva | image source | image source | image source

Chic and timeless, the French twist is one of our favourite up dos, perfect for channeling your inner Bardot. Mix things up a little by pairing your sophisticated twist with an unruly, messy bun or side swept fringe – and don’t be afraid to add some sparkle with a cute diamanté clip, flower pin or embellished hair comb.

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image source | image source, photography by Jenna Powers Photography | image source

A grown-up ponytail can look super stylish, especially if you have long glossy locks. For an A-list worthy look, we love extra height at the crown with the hair wrapped around the bobble for a flawless, polished finish. If you’re after something a little softer, ask your stylist to tease out hair strands from around your face to create more of a textured, undone look. And for an extra dose of wedding day glam, combine your high – or low – pony with tumultuous curls or loose waves.

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image source | image source, photography by Sharon Kahana Photography | image source, photography by Lola Images | image source

There are lots of stylish ways to incorporate braids into your up do without looking like you’re ready to swap your wedding vows for an escapade at Coachella. From chunky braided crowns and dainty bands to ruffled fishtails and tangled twists – braids are a fun and oh-so-pretty addition to your bridal beauty look.

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image source | image source | image source, photography by Ciara Richardson Photography

The top knot might be your go-to hairdo when your tresses are in need of a wash (or is that just us?), but have you thought about sporting this look on your special day? The bun is a bridal staple that’s versatile and flattering for all face shapes. Whether you’re after a sleek and elegant look, or a more tousled and wispy finish – the fashionable top knot is a gorgeous style perfect for the more contemporary bride.

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image source | image source, Callie Hobbs Photography | image source, photography Heather Rowland Photography | image source, photography by Lisa Waringer

The definitive retro hairdo – the beehive – is the hairstyle du jour if you’re after some voluminous back-combed action. This up do is bold and classy – think about combining it with loose bangs or soft curls for an indulgent vintage look. For a real princess moment – a decorative hairband will emphasise the volume of your hairstyle and work beautifully with your veil discreetly pinned underneath.

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super stylist: say hello to becca hunton hair & makeup

November 16th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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It’s not just the dress that creates a bride’s big day look, the hair and makeup styling play a big part too, which is why it’s always helpful to know a pro. So ladies, if you’re currently on the search for a bridal hair and makeup stylist, prepare to take note as we’re introducing the fabulous Becca Hunton to the blog today as a shiny new Brides Up North Sponsor.

Ticking both hair and makeup boxes, Yorkshire-based Becca is a fully qualified hairdresser and makeup artist, who’s worked in established salons and at top events in both Ibiza and London, before setting up her own company, specialising in bridal beauty.

And while Becca covers a whole range of bridal looks, she has a particular passion for vintage and festival style weddings, so if you’re planning a big day along these lines, this talented lady is definitely the stylist for you.

Here to tell us more about her services is the super stylist herself…

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Can you tell us a little about your background and how you got into hair and makeup?  

becca says: I’ve always been interested in hair and makeup since I was very young. As soon as I left school I became a hairdresser. Then at 19 I got into London College of Fashion to train in makeup. I loved it! Soon after I worked in Ibiza, creating looks for Hed Kandi and gorgeous brides. I’ve been part of many different salons, including Toni & Guy in London and have worked on shows at London Fashion Week.  After ten years of gaining experience I decided to set up my own business. It’s been the best thing I’ve ever done! I’ve always loved getting brides ready for their big day and with having both hair and makeup qualifications, I can offer the full package.

What do you enjoy about working in the wedding industry?

I love working in the wedding industry because you get to meet so many new and interesting people all the time. Everybody loves a good wedding don’t they? There’s always a good buzz about the place!

What is your favourite part of your job? 

I love it all but I’d say getting a bridal party ready for the big day is my favourite part of my job, it’s always such an excitable time. I love going to different venues too, I’ve been to some amazing places! I also love to see what lovely dresses the brides pick – there’s such a variety of dresses out there!

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Can you tell us about the services you offer?

I’m a fully trained hairdresser and makeup artist. As well as getting a bridal party ready, I cut and colour. I also offer makeup lessons. I do a lot of vintage styling and have found that hen parties love to get involved with that. I can either do mini makeovers on all the hens, or give them makeup lessons and then they all have a go too.

What process will a bride go through if they pick you to do their wedding hair and makeup?

After contacting me we will discuss your wedding and ideas that you have. I can give you tips on where to look for ideas. A trial is included in the price, which usually happens four to six weeks before the wedding. That’s a time when we can try different looks. I take photos of the hair and makeup and also write up a face plan of the makeup I have used ready to recreate on the big day.

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serious skills: say hello to lipstick & curls

October 7th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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Two of our very favourite places in life to visit have to be the hairdressers and the beauty counters of a luxury department store. It’s therefore little surprise that we love to talk all things bridal hair and beauty, particularly with the pros who can offer an abundance of advice and those expert industry tips.

And they don’t come much more knowledgeable than our new Sponsor that we’re introducing on the bog today, the fabulous Lipstick & Curls.

With excess of 150 professional hair stylist and makeup artists on the books, these guys know their MAC from their McGrath and can provide a whole host of treatments to have you looking and feeling your very best for your big day. From bridal hair and makeup through to those all-important little extras, such as manicures, lash extensions and brow grooming, these guys have got it well and truly covered.

And if you like what you see ladies you will be excited to learn that the fabulous team are offering a 10% discount to all brides booking in 2016 if they mention Brides Up North.

Here to explain more about their super services is the director and head stylist of Lipstick & Curls, Amanda Moorhouse.

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Tell us a little about the Lipstick & Curls team and the various services that you offer?

amanda says: Lipstick & Curls is a hair and makeup team of more than 150 artists providing services nationally for brides, parties, fashion and media. I established the company in London and we now have a second office in Leeds for the north of England.

We are always adding new services to our website as we try and give our customers the widest choice. We work closely with our customers helping them put a package together that will suit their group booking and event. Our most popular service is our bridal service where we can accommodate any size group and provide a wide range of services including manicure, lash extensions, brow grooming, hair styling and makeup.

We also work closely with other companies so can now help with recommendations for catering, car hire, DJ, photographer and much more.

In addition, we offer a great party service (particularly popular with hen parties) and make over lessons and masterclasses.

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What makes you different to other hair stylists and makeup artists?

We are very proud to have a wonderfully talented team of more than 60 artists in the north of England, all of which have been handpicked and have an amazing body of work, outstanding skills and a winning personality!

All of our artists are highly skilled in all aspects of hair and make-up styling and are fully trained, fully insured and fully qualified to a very high standard. Our team are extremely friendly and have lots of experience working with brides on their special day. We want a reputation of being the best and we only employ the best.

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What process will a bride go through if they pick Lipstick & Curls to do their wedding hair and makeup?

At Lipstick & Curls, we understand the importance of getting it perfect for a bride. We work with the bride to develop a look that will complement her dress, her features and her own personal style. We offer a very personal experience; we want all our brides to feel special. We develop a relationship with all of our brides and work together to create what they desire for their special day. This often includes sending pictures to each other including images of the dress, themselves and perhaps a colour pallet.

Most of our brides will have a trial, this usually happens six to eight weeks prior to the wedding (every bride is different however and some like to do this earlier). As soon as a bride has sorted her dress we encourage them to get in touch, if not before! We want as much time as possible to work with our brides and to be part of this process by letting us help them along the way. We can offer advice right at the beginning on head pieces, hair extensions and top tips on how to look after your hair and skin in the run up to the big day.

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What advice do you offer brides when they are planning their wedding, and where do you advise that they look for bridal hair and makeup inspiration?

I’ve met a lot of brides and whilst most of them relish in the thought of planning a wedding, in hindsight it’s not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’. My main advice is it’s your day, so do it your way! There are no rules, so make this day your absolute fantasy wedding (whatever that may be).

In terms of inspiration, there is lots of information online and so many alternative options when it comes to creating your perfect day. Remember it should be fun so enjoy planning it together!

Pinterest is fab for sourcing images and collecting ideas. However, I‘m a firm believer that showing our customers our past work, often does the same. Look at as many blogs and websites as you can, and in particular look at ‘real brides’ and read about their chosen looks and experiences. It’s the best inspiration!

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