August 12th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
When we’re not busy working, us Brides Up North girls are happy to admit that we love nothing more than a good reality TV binge; whether it be Keeping Up with the Kardashians, or checking up on the latest scandals in Chelsea and Essex.
A little closer to home, we’ve also become totally hooked on The Real Housewives of Cheshire – not only for the amazing hit of gossip and glamour– but also because the North West has become a real Brides Up North hotspot, with our Luxury Wedding Exhibitions taking place at some of the finest venues in the county.
And so when an invite landed in our inbox to the launch event of Real Housewife Tanya Bardo’s new bridal jewellery collection, there was no hesitation as we RSVP’d. Taking place at none other than co-star Dawn Ward’s house, we were given the opportunity to view the gorgeous jewellery collection for ourselves and even got to model and few pieces for a little shoot too, with hair by Alison Pearson Salon, makeup by Second Glance and dresses provided our friends at Dotty Taylor Bridal.
Having struggled to find jewellery for her own wedding to professional footballer Phil Bardsley two years ago, Tanya was keen to create a luxurious yet affordable bridal jewellery range that could be worn by brides, with options for bridesmaids and flower girls as well.
Following the same theme as her already popular Dreams to Reality jewellery collection, the handmade bridal designs feature a dainty angel wings charm and also incorporate pretty Swarovski pearls and sparkling crystals, making them a perfect addition for a bride and her wedding party.
To chat more about the designs (whilst trying to get the latest RHWC gossip), we caught up with the beautiful and straight-talking Tanya, who is expecting a baby anytime around now – so if he’s arrived, congratulations Tanya and Phil!
What first made you want to launch a jewellery range?
tanya says: I’d been working as a life coach and had also written a self-help coaching book, one of the areas which you focus on is looking at what your dreams/goals are. It’s important to write these down, but then it is also easy to forget about them when getting caught up in your daily living. When I was a single mum with no money I used to keep a little pebble in my pocket, every time I put my hand in my pocket and felt it there it’d prompt me to visualise my dreams.
So with the jewellery range I wanted to create something beautiful which acts as a daily reminder, so every time you see your piece of jewellery it triggers a little thought in your mind to make sure you’re doing something towards making your dream become reality.
August 3rd, 2016 | Rachel Parry
All wedding journeys tend to start with a ring that will remain on the bride’s hand from the engagement to the ‘I dos’ and throughout married life that follows. As such it’s important that the chosen ring will last a lifetime and offers the most sparkle for your buck.
To help you and your partner pick a winning rock, we’re handing the blog over this morning to GIA Diamonds Graduate Paul Gian. Keen to ensure that couples are clued up on the clarity, cut, color and carat of diamonds before making their ring purchase, expert Paul has set up handy website Beyond4cs.com and is here to share some of his gems of advice with you today…
Images from real weddings featured on these pages and not provided by Sponsor. Please see image credits for photographer details – we love these talented folk!
Can you tell us a little about your background in the diamond & jewellery market?
paul says: My story began back in 2012 when I needed to buy a proposal ring for my fiancée. It started months of frustrating online research as there was a lack of reliable information. As I started reading up, my interest in gemstones and diamonds grew. Since then, I’ve completed the GIA Diamonds Graduate program and built up my own gemstone collection.
When and why did you set up Beyond4cs.com and who is it aimed at?
A diamond engagement ring is possibly one of the most expensive purchases someone would make in their lifetime (besides a car and home). Beyond4cs.com was started in 2014 and it is targeted at fellow consumers to shed light on the engagement ring buying process.
What are the most important elements that should be taken into consideration when shopping for a diamond engagement ring to get the best quality diamond for the budget?
The cut quality of a diamond matters the most because it directly affects how much sparkle the diamond will have.
What would you say to those who have quite a modest budget, what types of diamonds should they be looking at?
It really boils down to personal preferences and needs. There isn’t a particular shape, color or clarity that’s going to appeal to everyone on the same level. In the current market, the most popular diamond shapes are round, princess and cushion.
July 15th, 2016 | Julia Braime
We’ve long been fans of Glitzy Secrets‘ range of beautiful yet affordable bridal jewellery here at Brides Up North HQ, and have been known to rock a little of the magic sparkle ourselves when the occasion demands.
How excited we were to hear then, that the award winning label have launched a new collection of precious pieces (without the price tag!) in our fave metal du jour, romantic rose gold?! Glitzy Secrets‘ Rose Gold Collection does what it says on the tin – presents a capsule jewellery range of earrings, pedants, bracelets, necklace and hair accessories all blushing with the delicate and feminine hue of rose gold.
glitzy secrets say:Our silver and pearl classic collection has been the choice of thousands of brides and bridesmaids with its elegant and timeless style. We planned to introduce some of the designs in gold and rose gold tone early next year but, after receiving so many requests, we knew we had to bring the launch forward. It’s clear that with more brides opting for nude and blush gowns, they are looking for warmer hued accessories for a beautiful romantic feel and our classic collection offers just that.
June 17th, 2016 | Julia Braime
Here at Brides Up North, we’ve always been fans of Thomas Sabo‘s range of fashionable, wearable jewellery, so when our go-to jewellery brand decided to throw some extra romance into the mix, the result was always going to be right up our street.
thomas sabo say: Our bridal jewellery collection is all about eternalising the best day of your life with stunning jewellery designs to be treasured forever. As every bride has a different taste, we have created wedding jewellery to suit every style, whether it be vintage inspired, glamorous, classic and timeless or sweet and romantic.
The bridal selection includes carefully hand-picked pieces: delicate or statement necklaces, glorious drop earrings, bangles and bracelets to give that extra special touch to your wedding look and rings so elegant that they’ll perfectly pair with your wedding ring. The array of Thomas Sabo engagement rings offers options for all budgets, including both stunning cubic zirconia encrusted designs in sterling silver and solid gold rings with real diamonds and gemstones from the Fine Jewellery collection.
The groom will be able to complement his look with stunningly designed cufflinks, elegant watches and sophisticated bracelets and the wedding jewellery edit also includes cute Charm Club pieces for flower girls.
At Brides Up North, we are particularly keen on the The Love Bridge range for brides or bridesmaids. The idea is inspired by a romantic ritual: as a symbol of their love and everlasting togetherness, lovers attach padlocks engraved with their initials to famous bridges in the most romantic cities in the world. From New York, Paris, Venice to Cape Town, the so-called ‘Love Bridges’ have become a symbol of romance, celebrating a special promise made by two people.
Profound feelings, meaningful moments, love and happiness – the new Love Bridge line from Thomas Sabo captures important events in life with a bespoke engraving. Why not use yours to send a secret love message? #anyexcuse
December 14th, 2015 | Julia Braime
There’s no doubt that an engagement ring is one of the most important purchases during a couple’s lifetime. It’s a symbol of your love, and will always remind you of the day when you promised yourselves to each other forever. For many brides it’s also a piece of jewellery that speaks about her personal style – especially if you have an unusual design in mind. Whether you love vintage, diamond clusters, halos or side-stones, your ring should be as uniquely ‘you’ as possible.
To talk about unique engagement ring styles, the team from the luxury London online jeweller TheDiamondStore.co.uk are taking over our corner of the internet with some expert tips and key pieces from their newest collections.
if in doubt, add diamonds
When it comes to engagement rings, there are more options than we tend to realise. The classic solitaire is just a start. Right now the focus is on innovative shapes, big designs and multiple diamonds. Yellow gold is making a slow but elegant comeback. Stones on the ring’s band, or forming a halo around an unusual centre stone, add extra radiance and romance.
It’s good to understand the basic diamond quality factors of the 4Cs – cut, colour, clarity and carat weight. But ultimately it’s the style of a ring that should influence your decision. If you want an antique look, pick detailed Art Deco patterns, multiple diamonds clusters or yellow gold. Minimalist or asymmetrical shapes are instantly more contemporary. And if you want to combine the two, look for a ring that has Old World opulence within sleek, modern geometric lines.
Also, you don’t need to forgo classic design to be unique. Just choose a simpler ring with hidden detail that only you know about. Such as intricate gold work in the shape of a heart underneath the mount.
the bigger the better?
Another important factor when choosing any ring is identifying the right size of the mount. Small hands tend to suit delicate designs. Longer fingers or wider hands can accommodate big settings, as they cover more of the finger without looking too heavy.
follow your heart
Style and size aside, the most important aspect of choosing a unique engagement ring is that it suits your personality. For this, allow yourself simply to be drawn to the right ring. Whatever your heart says will be right.
Visit TheDiamondStore.co.uk to check out their range of rocks. Like you needed telling twice…
November 3rd, 2015 | Julia Braime
After months of design and hours of tediously hand stitching these beautiful creations, laura rhodes has finally launched her first jewellery and accessory collection, and Brides Up North are thrilled to be the very first to bring this luxury collection of hand-made pieces to your attention.
Never seen before, these beauties are designed and created by Laura herself in her Ilkley studio set within the heart of the Yorkshire Dales. These opulent accessories are crafted to the highest standard using only the finest components with every piece being lovingly hand stitched with stunning attention to detail. The collection doesn’t follow trends – instead Laura designs and creates timeless pieces that will last and be worn over and over again.
After ‘discovering’ Laura’s work at London’s White Gallery trade event earlier this year, we are thrilled to bring these pieces to our pretty pages as an exclusive first look. We know that you’ll love these treasures just as much as we do! Get ready to twinkle…
Images by Carolyn Mendelsohn Photography.
Accessories are an important part of any outfit, as a bride they can completely change or complete your look on the big day, with this in mind the Laura Rhodes collection covers all aspects ranging from headpieces and earrings to statement necklaces and sash belts. Brides can also put their own mark on their accessories by meeting Laura at the studio and having a bespoke piece specially designed.
To coincide with the launch of her first collection, Laura Rhodes has also launched her website www.laurarhodesbridal.com where brides who are not local to the studio can view and purchase the entire range, allowing the designs to be available both nationally and internationally.
laura says: I love what I do and I take a great deal of pride in each and every piece. I am a perfectionist and my own worst critic but that is what makes my work what it is. I like to think my creations are some-thing that can be passed on, timeless and without age. I consider each creation an individual piece of art and continue to take my inspiration from everyday architecture and nature. A lot of thought has gone into each design, each having been sketched many times in my book before I begin creating. I still feel so honored when someone chooses to buy my work; there is nothing more re-warding than when a bride chooses to wear one of my designs on her special day.
To see more visit Laura Rhodes’ website.
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