Charlotte Balbier

party on: winter wedding guest high street haul

December 16th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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Rousseau Dress by Maje, was £280 now £224

With the festive spirit well underway, we’re enjoying shopping on the high street more than ever with lots of glitz, glamour and texture in the stores.

As such, we thought now would be a good time to offer a little inspiration to those of you fortunate enough to be attending a friend or relative’s wedding during the upcoming party season.

Cue shimmering tops, festive florals and an embellishment overload that may well lead to an impulsive shopping spree. And if you don’t have a winter wedding in the diary, surely with Christmas and New Year fast approaching, there’s a need for new outfit!

the threads

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Amore Sparkle Embroidered Tulle Dress, £195, from French Connection – Usually floral patterns are associated with the warmer seasons of the year, but this winter we are seeing an array of pretty petals in bold hues that are sure to make you stand out at the party.

Maneela Jacquard Dress, was £169, now £119, from Coast – We just love a bargain and as the Christmas sales are starting earlier and earlier, you can already be reaping the rewards of discounted seasonal gems such as this stunning dress from Coast, with on-trend Bardot neckline and insanely beautiful pattern.

Rocco jacket £245, and trousers, £130, from Reiss – If you’re not keen on dresses this super smart and stylish co-ord will do just the trick. Team with a lace or shimmering top for added texture and a pop of colour.

Jacquard top, £19.99, from Zara – The perfect accompaniment to a cool trouser suit, this gorgeous, slinky top is perfect for when it’s time to shed the jacket and hit the dancefloor!

Lois Pleated Dress, was £195, now £115, from Whistles – Another bargain and a failsafe, the little black dress. We love that this design from Whistles has lots going on and ticks more than one trend-box, with pleat and lace detailing.

Supernova Cropped Embellished Tulle Top, £150, and Tulle Maxi Skirt, £120, from Net-A-Porter – Be the belle of the ball in the utterly beautiful top and skirt combo, featuring both lavish sparkling detail and dreamy layers of tulle.

Zig Zag Crinkle Jumpsuit, £42, from Topshop – Another dress alternative, and a particularly good choice for an evening wedding reception, this bold pattern and festive colour hue screams “party”.

Tilly Faux Fur Coat, £80, from Oasis – Baby it’s cold outside so be sure to treat yourself to a stylish winter cover-up too, such as this gorgeous faux fur number.

the accessories

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Bowwe Glitter Clutch Bag, £99, from Ted Baker – Did you ever see such a cute bag? And it’s just the right size for a phone, lippy and card. Arm-candy perfection!

Burgundy Velvet Court Heels, £68, from Office – Featuring both an on-trend colour and fabric of the season, we will definitely be bagging some of these burgundy delights!

Cincilla Faux Fur Tippet, £25, from French Connection – If you feel that a big jacket would hide your outfit too much why not go for a smaller cover-up but that still emits elegance like this super-soft French Connection design.

Gold-Plated Oscar De La Renta Clip Earrings, £225, from Net-A-Porter – If you are going for a fairly plain outfit you can afford to go all out with your accessories, starting with these fabulous floral earrings!

Pearl brooch courts, £140, from Ted Baker – The perfect festive staple, these black beauties with brooch detailing will last you for many festive seasons to come making them a top investment this winter.

Feather Fringe Cape, £65, from Topshop – An alternative to the classic faux fur capes for all you fashionistas out there!

Valentino Rockstud Metallic Textured-Leather Pouch, £470, from Net-A-Porter – The perfect accessory for toughening up girly, girl outfits and injecting a pop of festive metallics.

Statement Stud Earrings, was £15, now £20, from Warehouse – We just love jewellery that looks far more expensive than what it is. Serious steel alert!

V-Shape Ring Pack, £9, from Topshop – As the current fashion world would have it, the more rings the better, so stack ‘em up ladies!

Love Cuff, £20, French Connection – All we need is… this oh-so-sweet bangle. Says it all really!

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style sheet: winter wedding alternatives

December 14th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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As we find ourselves in the coldest yet most magical season of the year, we’ve been turning our thoughts to winter weddings.

Some brides and grooms may be put off marrying at this time of year due to the increasingly unpredictable British weather, but with some careful planning and fabulous styling a winter wedding can be a real treat for all the senses, and in turn, more memorable for you and your guests.

Think scented candles for fragrance and ambience, warm comfort food to evoke nostalgic memories and winter tipples to help get the party started and you’re part way there.

If, however, what’s putting you off is the somewhat ‘go-to’ styling of winter nuptials, we’re here to change your mind. For we’ve come up with three alternative winter wedding themes that steer clear of crimson red and sparkling silver schemes, plus there’s not a reindeer or bauble in sight!

Ladies, we give you both comfort and class…

very berry

very-berry

Clockwise from top left: image source, photography by Alyssa Turner Photography| image source, photography by Peaches & Mint| image source| image source, photography by Jonathan Ong Photography| image source, photography by Mandy Evans Photography| image source, photography by Awake Photography| image source, photography by Jenn Hopkins| image source, photography by  Eyelet Images| image source, photography by Matilda Rose| image source, photography by Dan and Melissa Photography.

Just a small diversion from the traditional red winter wedding colour palette, a winning mixture of purple, pink and burgundy shades can give a wedding an instant hint of opulence.

Such tones also work beautifully with the flowers and fruits of the season making these a great way to project your chosen colour scheme.

Big, bold and blousy bouquets and floral decorations add to the luxurious feel that the rich hues emit and will help to provide striking focal points. For further plushness, metallic accents, particularly in gold, work in perfect harmony with the beautiful berry tones and give a small nod to the festive season without being at all OTT.

Beyond the blooms, mercury glass tealight holders and metallic vessels and vases look fabulous with the palette.

To remain on theme berries can be used in the bouquets and button holes as well as within the food and drink menus and the cake.

When it comes to the bridesmaids, brides can go with just one of the berry tones that suits her maids best, perhaps magenta, indigo or violet, or alternatively can have her leading ladies in a full spectrum of the hues.

grey dusk

grey-dusk

Clockwise from top left: image source| image source| image source| image source, photography by Svetlana Strizhakova| image source, photography by Kendal Riley of Ostara Photography| image source| image source| image source, photography by Taylor Lord Photography| image source| image source.

Possibly one colour scheme that works all year round, grey is both a classic and elegant choice of palette.

For winter weddings the hue can be ‘warmed-up’ by introducing different textures and shades providing both interest and depth.

Brides and their maids can easily layer their look with grey cover-ups; whether it be a faux fur jacket, feather shrug or lace overlay. Meanwhile groomsmen can opt for a tweed or woollen suit with coordinating pocket squares, dicky bows or ties in varying fabrics creating a stylish wintery feel.

Texture in tactile fabrics and finishes can be carried through to the décor too, with velvet ribbons attached floral arrangements or holding cutlery and napkins in place. Roaming foliage across tables can also help to break up the grey and works in line with on-trend botanical themes too.

Candles at various heights in pillars, tapers and tea lights will also help to set the wintery scene as will luxurious stationery in enchanting designs.

winter blues

cool-blues

Clockwise from top left: image source, photography by Charlene Schreuder Photography| image source| image source| image source, photography by Emily Delamater| image source, photography by Shane and Lauren Photography| image source| image source, photography by E Schmidt Photography| image source| image source, photography by Gideon Photography| image source.

Though often thought of as a ‘cold’ colour, when accompanied with rich metallic accents blue can bring element of warmth and glamour to winter celebrations.

The trick is to use a deep shade of blue and not to get carried away with the glitz and glitter, instead giving the proceedings just a sprinkling of sparkle. This could be achieved through styling and stationery choices, but also through the bride and bridesmaid attire too. So, for example, brides could add a hint of shine to their outfit with metallic heels while maids can glam-up their look with delicate gold jewellery or accessories.

The table settings are perhaps the element that will require the most care in not overdoing it. For a look of understated elegance, keep things simple by adding gold-edged glassware and cutlery to a dark blue tablecloth base. For further interest and texture use rustic touches in foliage and tree slices, and perhaps even the odd pine cone (note the “odd” there).

Meanwhile for those wanting to take the sparkle up a notch, sequin table runners and cloths are an accessible and effective option. Further additions can include metallic candle holders, stationery and plate chargers but just be sure that the overall look is class rather than brash!

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snowflakes & lilies. a winter wedding at peckforton castle – lorna & dave

October 21st, 2016 | Alexis Forsyth

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Today’s elegant real wedding was arranged in just six months and perfectly illustrates the beauty of tying the knot in the winter season.

The couple, Lorna and Dave, had been together for more than five years before getting engaged. Briefly contemplating a beach wedding in the Caribbean sunshine, the couple couldn’t resist the allure of staying close to home and celebrating their big day at the magnificent Peckforton Castle.

Dressed in an off-the-shoulder, fluted fishtail gown, Lorna was every bit the fairy-tale princess.

With images from Jonny Draper Photography.

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lorna says: We got engaged on 23rd May 2015, at Tre-Ysgawen Hall, Anglesey, Wales. At this point we had been together for more than five years, so I’d pretty much given up hope, but it turns out he was waiting for me to stop hinting so that it would come as a surprise. Dave had taken me away for the weekend and chosen Wales because of my Welsh roots. We enjoyed spa treatments on the Saturday and even joked in the Jacuzzi that Dave was rubbish at keeping secrets! Later that day, he got down on one knee in a lovely little meadow in the grounds of the hotel. I was so stunned he had to prompt me for a response as his knee was getting wet from the grass!

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We tied the knot on Thursday 17th December 2015. We both wanted a winter wedding and weren’t concerned about the weather. We love Christmas time, so thought we could make the most of the gorgeous festive decorations at our venue, Peckforton Castle in Cheshire. We also first met on 17th January so there was certain symmetry to the date.

We got married in the Great Hall at Peckforton. Dave wanted to either wed on a beach in the Caribbean or in a castle. As I’m red head and not a huge fan of sand – the decision was quickly made! We looked at a number of other locations in and around Cheshire, but Peckforton was by far the most magical and perfect venue.

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We both love to travel so our table names were places we had visited together and our table plan was a map of the world. We also had a vintage suitcase for our cards. For us, this signified that we had already been on many adventures, and that we are now embarking on another big adventure together into married life.

We tried to keep a personal touch throughout the wedding, with my sister designing our wedding invitations and other stationery, and my mum making the most fabulous snowflake wedding cake. Overall, we were going for an understated but elegant look.

Our colour scheme was dark purple. It’s a rich shade that stands out for a winter wedding and it also complemented the decor in the castle – and we both love the colour!

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white lace. a winter wedding in york – stacey & alex

October 4th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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Have we mentioned that we love all things Christmas? So with less than 12 weeks to go until Santa visits us once again we thought it was high time for another festive themed big day on the blog.

Taking place in the charming city of York, we adore how Alex and Stacey’s stylish wedding gives subtle nods to the season without a single piece of tinsel in sight!

We’re also big fans of the atmospheric venue and choice of simple white blooms and cake. The star of the show for us though just has to be Stacey’s gorgeous bespoke, lace detailed dress, complete with floor-length veil and glamorous red lips. Pure perfection!

With images by Photography34.

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stacey says: We got engaged on the beach at Alnmouth, in Northumberland. We’d been staying in a cottage nearby and had gone out for a walk when Alex asked the question. It was 5th November in 2014, and a really crisp cold day with blue skies and very few people around.

We set our wedding date for 28th November 2015, as we liked the idea of getting married in the same month that we got engaged.

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Our chosen venue was Merchant Taylors Hall, in York. We live in York and wanted somewhere central that our friends and family could easily travel to. We looked around several venues and loved this one. The beamed ceilings and open fire seemed to be perfect for a winter wedding. The layout of the hall was also great for the number of guests we wanted and allowed us to have both the ceremony and reception all in the same place.

We initially didn’t really have a theme to the wedding but then we discovered that the week we were marrying would be when the Christmas tree would be put up in the Merchant Taylors Hall. We therefore decided to with a bit of a festive feel, adding lights in the hall and having Christmas crackers as favours.

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We didn’t set out to have any specific colour scheme either, at first kept it simple with everything in white. However, we then decided on a deep blue/purple colour for the bridesmaid dresses and so incorporated that hue into the wedding and matched the ties, invitations and table names.

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get set, sparkle. ian stuart for a winter wedding at armathwaite hall – emma & mark

September 20th, 2016 | Julia Braime

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Today on the blog we have some beautiful inspiration for those of you planning winter weddings as we share the details of Emma and Mark’s big day.

Following an Ikea proposal (don’t worry, he made up for it), Emma and Mark set about planning an atmospheric November wedding, complete with lots of soft candlelight and sparkling décor.

Going all out on the opportunity to wear a big dress, bride Emma chose a stunning Ian Stuart gown with accents of shimmering silver to match both the colour scheme and season. Now that’s what we call a dress with the wow-factor!

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

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emma says: We got engaged in Ikea over meatballs! Honestly! But then we had my engagement ring specially made and Mark surprised me with a trip to London to see the Lion King (I love Disney). He got us box seats and had champagne and chocolates put in the box. It was amazing!

As we loved the idea of a Christmas or winter wedding we set the date for 28th November.

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Our chosen venue was Armathwaite Hall in Keswick. We both love the Lake District and when we went to look at venues Armathwaite felt really personal. I like modern venues and Mark likes old fashioned and Armathwaite had the perfect blend of both.

To fit the time of year we went for a sparkly wedding theme (with a hint of Disney!) As we knew it would be dark outside we thought lots of sparkles and candles would look great.

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When it came to the colour scheme we knew that we didn’t want everyone in the same colour as we had an unconventional bridal party in that the maid of honour was male and we had female groomsmen. I also wanted each of the bridesmaids to have dresses that suited them, rather than sticking to a certain theme. In the end we went for pale pastel colours accented with a silver shimmer.

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I chose to wear an Ian Stuart dress from Ava Rose Hamilton. I instantly fell in love with it. I’d tried on about seven or eight dresses beforehand but none of them made me excited, or felt quite so special. I knew I wanted a big dress – the sort that you can only ever wear on your wedding day – but also wanted something that really suited me. I loved the silver woven into the lace of the dress and that it had a huge skirt but fitted silk body. I never thought I would get a strapless dress but the minute I tried it on I knew it was right.

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vintage class. jenny packham for a winter wedding at pendrell hall – sarah & jamie

August 4th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

A Classic Wedding at Pendrell Hall (c) Jonny Draper Photography (61)

This morning we’re sharing a beautiful winter wedding on our pretty pages, perfect for those of you planning your big day for the colder months of the year.

Super stylish and personal, Sarah and Jamie’s November wedding features stunning attire, gorgeous handmade décor and details, plus out-of-this-world flowers. Let’s get straight into it…

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

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sarah says: We got engaged on Christmas Eve 2014. I love Christmas now as much as when I was little and we were excited about heading back to my family’s to celebrate. On top of this Jamie’s birthday is Christmas day so it’s always a fun time of year for us. Prior to heading back to Southport for Christmas Jamie suggested a walk around Sefton Park, in Liverpool, which is just down the road from where we live. We spend lots of time in the park either on winter walks, picnicking or barbequing with friends, so it’s a place that is close to our hearts.

It was a gorgeous wintery morning and as we got to our favourite spot in the park Jamie stopped and pulled out the engagement ring. The ring was a vintage ring that had been Jamie’s gran’s engagement ring. She had passed it down to Jamie for him to give to his future wife. Needless to say it was an emotional moment and before Jamie could even get his words out I started to cry! It came as such a surprise! Once I could speak again I obviously said yes! I love vintage things so the ring was perfect. We then travelled home and surprised my family with the news (although Jamie is rubbish at keeping a secret so some of them already knew he was going to ask) and subsequently spent the rest of the festive period drinking champagne and celebrating with friends and family!

A Classic Wedding at Pendrell Hall (c) Jonny Draper Photography (7)

We got married on the 27th November 2015. We knew we didn’t want a long engagement and liked the idea of a winter wedding so when the venue had this date available we snapped it up!

We got married at St Nicholas Church in Codsall, Staffordshire. It was important to both of us to have a church wedding. Our reception was at Pendrell Hall in Codsall Wood, which is a beautiful country house, exclusive use wedding venue. It was actually the only venue that we looked at. We knew we wanted somewhere exclusive, somewhere that had accommodation for our closest friends and family and somewhere that fitted in with our style. Once we saw Pendrell Hall it ticked all the boxes! We fell in love with the big reception room and all the old style features so booked it there and then.

A Classic Wedding at Pendrell Hall (c) Jonny Draper Photography (66)

We didn’t really have a theme as such but my individual style and the venue nodded towards vintage. We wanted the day to be relaxed and personal to us with a real sense of family.

I didn’t really think we had a colour scheme as such either, but on reflection I would say it was ‘wintery’ to reflect the time of year. We went for dark and rich coloured bridesmaid dresses and suits and chose wintery Marsala themed flowers to fit in with the season.

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