Brides Up North

the designer series: Charlotte Balbier

August 27th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Charlotte Balbier

We recently featured Ms Balbier’s new Iscoyd Park bridal collection for 2015 on these very pages, and today I’m proud to hear all about the inspirations behind my wonderful friend’s beautiful designs.  So Brides Up North, will you be a Balbier bride?  You lucky, lucky things.

Click here to view the extended collection.

Charlotte Balbier Collection 2014

Charlotte says: A Charlotte Balbier bride is confident and daring in both her wedding dress style and every day fashion choices. My brides certainly have their own sense of individuality. Whether you’re a relaxed boho bride whose bouquet choice is wild hand picked rural flowers or a city fashion forward bride who keeps it minimalist and chic. Some brides like a theme and some like to keep it eclectic, it’s a personal style and choice and both are gorgeous.

Charlotte Balbier Collection 2014

What were your inspirations for this collection?

The Iscoyd Park Collection is very close to my heart as I designed the collection based on my wedding day to Teddy. My wedding day took place at a venue called Iscoyd Park in North Wales last December. ‘The Iscoyd Park’ collection is made up of over twenty new gorgeous gowns in an array of styles to suit the modern day bride, their wedding and style. The new collection includes two dresses I actually wore on the big day called ‘The Charlotte’ and ‘Iscoyd Park.’ I am flattered we’ve had such a positive response to brides wearing the same dress as I did on my big day! The ‘Iscoyd Park’ collection was designed with love, close to my dear heart.

Charlotte Balbier Collection 2014

What shapes, fabrics and embellishments were chosen for the collection and why?

The Charlotte Balbier collection has always been fashion inspired.  Gowns that are forward thinking for the new generation bride. My signature style and look is using soft French laces. Charlotte Balbier is utterly feminine in charm and grace. My gowns are inherently traditional but with that added extra twist of fashion for a modern gown, bride and wedding day. The collection presents classical elegance and timeless gowns that never go out of fashion in array of styles, silhouettes, fabrics and a soft gold, pink and ivory colour pallette.

Charlotte Balbier Collection 2014

What sizes are your gowns available in? 

Our sizing is from 0 to any size. Brides can choose the sizing they need and our stockist’s usually amend the dresses to fit the bride to perfection.

Charlotte Balbier Collection 2014

What does 2014/ 2015 hold for your label? What are you excited about?

Charlotte Balbier has been around for more than 10 years now and we’ve built a great brand. I am now embarking on a new chapter and looking forward to another 10 years, staying at the forefront of British bridal and looking to also take the Balbier brand International. Last year I won the Wedding Ideas Magazine’s Bridal Designer Awards and I’ve just been nominated for Perfect Wedding’s Best Bridal Designer. Winning Awards is a great achievement and honour to be recognized in the industry. Brides who’d love Charlotte Balbier to win can vote here.

Charlotte Balbier Collection 2014

What are your “best things” in life?

I am a very lucky lady because the best things in life surround me all the time! I’m constantly surrounded by lovely Charlotte Balbier bridal dresses and of course everything else in the bridal industry. I love shoes especially Jimmy Choo’s, Aruna Seth and Freya Rose. I love Clarins facials and enjoy one once a month religiously! I love my dog Buster and my dear husband Teddy!

Where can Brides Up North find out more about your label?

Visit our website, or find us on Twitter or Facebook.  A list of stockists can be found here.

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Heroines. A Literature Themed Bridal Shoot To Celebrate The 2015 Whiting Collection By KMR Bespoke Bridal

June 11th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Have I got some eye candy for you lovely lot today! The lady behind this (fabulous) wedding dress is nothing if not versatile.  She’s also extremely talented and a rather lovely person at that.  I know.  I’ve met her, and see these beauties in real life.

Step forward Kelly Redhead of KMR Bespoke Bridal.  One to watch and superstar designer of the future, she’s here to present her 2015 Whiting Collection to Brides Up North.  You saw it here first girls (oh, except from on the pages of Vogue Italia – yes, that’s exactly how we roll!).

Images by Folega Photography.

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Kelly says: A collaborative literature vintage themed shoot at Cusworth Hall, Doncaster brought together a talented group of suppliers. Cusworth Hall was a fantastic venue to hold the shoot with many of the shots taken in the Library, in keeping with the literary theme.

The little details from the various suppliers involved with the shoot worked perfectly with my designs and the fresh approach of the photography by Sarah really did make this shoot romantic and full of love.

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

The Whiting Collection is my debut 2015 collection of bridal gowns. The collection is named after my late Grandmother who inspired me from a young age to become a designer. Three of the collections gowns were used in this preview shoot at Cusworth Hall; Grace, Ivy and Annie.

Grace is an elegant floor length bias cut ivory silk crepe and guipure lace gown. A high illusion neckline is finished with bound silk crepe detailing and delicate cap sleeves. A KMR signature of a keyhole back opening paired with a detachable lace train creates a stunning back. The gown is finished with a silver crystal embellished waistband.

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

Ivy is a stylish ivory embroidered lace and silk crepe backed satin gown. Elegant lace sleeves and a deep V-shaped neckline at the back of the gown are finished with a delicate scallop lace edging. Creating a figure enhancing silhouette the gown has a bias fishtail skirt with a train to add a feminine touch. The gown is finished with delicate covered buttons and rouleau loops down the back.

Annie is a sophisticated strapless gown with a sweetheart neckline. The elegant circle skirt is made up of layers of silk taffeta and silk chiffon with a beautiful train. The bodice is finished with delicate pleated silk taffeta, a plunging back and fastened with rouleau loops and covered buttons. The gown is finished with a stunning silver crystal motif on the waist.

There are three other gowns in KMR’s 2015 bridal collection. As this was a preview shoot of the collection the final three gowns will be revealed soon.

Folega Photography for KMR Bespoke Bridal

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Excusive! First Look: Alan Hannah 2015 Bridal Collections On The Catwalk

April 9th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Its been a bit of a haute couture week at Brides Up North HQ.  We’ve been at White Gallery London checking out the brand new bridal wear collections from the big names in the wedding dress industry and are really excited to bring you some exclusive catwalk previews direct from the event over the next few days.  Fast fashion or what?!

I’m obsessed with Alan Hannah’s beautiful gowns, and actually wore one of Marguerite’s creations for my own wedding back in 2010 (the dress was called All The Jazz and was a blush duchess satin… swoon), so it makes sense to open play on these pages by debuting their label’s exciting 2015 collections first.

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

For their main line, as well as the perfect couture cut and execution Marguerite has some really lovely new embellishment ideas including hand painted flowers and striking textured beading.  The MiaMia line is full of verve and panache with beautiful lace and dramatic skirts with theatrical detailing.  For me, there’s something to delight every bride here – soft sparkle, lovely lace, swishing satins, structured silks and contemporary twists, but always with an integral elegance and flair. 

And to top it all off?  All Alan Hannah’s gowns are designed and made in England.  You know we like things home grown at Brides Up North!

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

^^^Editor’s pick: this blush satin gown with chiffon skirts and crystal belt detail is to die for^^^

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

Alan Hannah 2015 by Christopher Dadey at White Gallery London

The 2015 collections will be arriving in bridal boutiques near you later this year.  In the meantime, check out Alan Hannah’s current collection and a list of Northern stockists by visiting their website. 

.

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Christopher Dadey for Alan Hannah at White Gallery

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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One Of A Kind. Supplier Showcase: Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

January 9th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Cou-ture: Origin: 1905–10; French: literally, sewing, seam

This morning I am thrilled to share the beautiful work of one of our newest Brides Up North Featured Suppliers, Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride.  The creations of the mother and daughter team are couture in the truest sense of the word, and you are so very lucky to have them on hand to create your dream dress. 

Compiling this interview I was struck not only by the gorgeous gowns that comprise this their launch shoot, but also by the amount of work, fittings and personal service that goes into creating each and every unique garment.  Once again, I have discovered a fabulous Northern service that I just wish I have known about when planning my own wedding.  That, to me, is what Brides Up North is all about. 

Ladies, you are in for a treat.  Explore your options!

Images by Kirstie McNulty Photography

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

When did Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride open and what is your background?

We are a very young business, only launched in December 2013, although this business has been years in the planning. Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride is run by mother and daughter, Sheila and Jessica.

Sewing has always been in our family, as my Mum designed and made her own wedding gown 35 years ago and has done the same for many family, friends and clients since then, so I grew up around beautiful fabrics and dresses from a very young age.

Whilst this has always been a passion and a hobby of my Mum’s it was never her profession until now. She took redundancy in early 2013 as a biochemist at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in order to pursue her love for sewing, designing and weddings!  My Mum’s 35+ years experience is of such value to our company, she is able to offer our brides advice on not only designs but the best fabrics to use for various styles, the most effective bodice foundations for each style of gown, fastenings, linings and the list goes on!

I graduated from the University of Leeds two years ago in English Literature but have also adopted my Mum’s love and passion for sewing during the past five years.

Our business is run from home – a converted vicarage in Liverpool. As we work from our home, our working hours are extremely flexible as we are able to hold our appointments around our client’s working hours, offering weekday, evening and weekend appointments. Our work environment is relaxed and personal whilst maintaining the professionalism and customer service of other bridal boutiques.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Tell us about your bespoke service?

The bespoke process is one that centres on our bride/client as we bring ideas presented to us into a finished garment that is exactly what they had wished for. The process begins with a free design consultation which gives the bride opportunity to discuss their design ideas, fabrics they would like, colours, time scale, wedding venue, budget and anything else about their wedding that they feel will be important to the design of their wedding dress. If the client is happy to proceed with us we will collect a £100 deposit at this appointment. Following this we will collate these ideas into a design and will source samples of fabrics for our clients to view at the next meeting.

We will arrange the following appointment and fitting at the client’s discretion (generally we ask brides to give us 4-6 months from first appointment to date of their wedding). At this second appointment we will discuss the fabrics we have sourced, finalise the design, take an initial measurement and book in the next series of fittings. At this point a further 40% deposit will be taken.

Before we make the design up in the final fabrics we always do a mock-dress in a toile foundation, this will help us to ensure the fit is just perfect for the client and will give the client the opportunity to see the shape and silhouette and make any changes to the style before the final fabrics are used.

Following this, the next appointment will show the client the final shape and silhouette made up in their desired fabrics. Another fitting will be done so as to ensure it fits perfectly. At this stage we will agree on the final fitting date with our Bride.

As we follow the above process, the final garment that is produced is one that our client has had tonnes of input into.  We encourage the Bride to make suggestions to the design at each stage so as to ensure they are 100% happy with the final dress. The numerous fittings also ensure the fit is just perfect.  This teamed with the fact that all of our wedding gowns (if wanted by the bride) have a boned corset style bodice underneath the top layer fabric to help the Bride feel secure and supported in her gown.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Why should brides choose to go bespoke?

A wedding dress is arguably the most important dress a girl will ever wear. It is something that is dreamt about for years and we don’t think the purchase of such a dress should be taken lightly. From speaking to so many brides in the past we have found that a lot of the time when choosing their ‘off-the-peg’ wedding dresses they have to make certain compromises somewhere whether that be in the style, the fabric, the fit, the fastenings, the embellishments…this is something that we are really opposed to at Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride, we feel that there should be no compromise on the most important dress you will ever wear!  With us they are able to hand pick every element of their wedding dress if they so wish. The series of fittings we offer enable the bride to see their dress at every stage and make alterations as they wish, the fit will be perfect for them, without the costly alteration fees.

Bespoke is also perfect for those brides that want something truly unique, something that no other bride can be seen to have worn. Having something custom-made enables the bride to give a true reflection of their personality, find a style that suits their body shape perfectly and they can also design their dress around the style of their wedding day – say they are getting married abroad, we can help them design a gown that is perfect to be worn on the beach, one that won’t be too heavy or hot to wear in the sunshine.

We also have a lot of brides who have had a style in mind for years – this may be a red-carpet dress they saw in a magazine, a famous wedding gown or a thought up design that they have held onto.  To go bespoke means our Brides are able to have exactly what they want, with no compromise.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Where do you find inspiration for your designs?

Inspiration for our recent collection came from all things luxurious. The fabrics used are all of the highest quality and this is something we really pride ourselves on, we feel every bride deserves to feel a million dollars on their wedding day and the best quality laces and silks teamed with a perfectly fitted gown will help to achieve this. When designing our gowns the bride is at the forefront of all of our thinking, their body shape is the most important feature and whether our ladies are tall, petite, curvy or very slim our designs help to accentuate the best features of our brides whilst ensuring they feel confident and glamorous in their dress. Our latest collection, whilst showcasing a range of varying styles and silhouettes all fit perfectly under a ‘vintage glamour’ story. Although, we do love meeting brides with really unique and quirky design ideas too, so all designs are welcome.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

What sort of fabrics and embellishments do you use in your designs?

The fabrics used for our bespoke gowns are mainly decided by the bride, the design they choose, what will work best for their type of wedding etc. However, we always use the best quality fabrics we can for the bride’s given budget. The fabrics used for our samples collection showcased on our website range from French Corded Lace to beautiful Duchesse Satin. We source all of our silks from British silk supplier James Hare and have various suppliers for our laces around the world. Likewise, we have a range of embellished waist belts that we can add to our gowns if our brides so wish.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Is there a particular style of dress that is popular with your brides at the moment?

We have found that brides of 2013 loved an open back. A statement back to a wedding gown is really popular at the moment whilst still being tasteful and classy. A number of our gowns on our website show varying ways of achieving the ‘statement open back’ whilst still remaining covered and respectful for those that are having church/religious weddings.

We have also found that a lot of brides that we spoke to are looking for a style that they are able to transform from day to night. This may be for the reason that they wish to be more covered up for the ceremony but then want something a little more glamorous for the evening. With this we have designed a selection of wedding gowns that all centre around one simple column silhouette dress (silhouette is bride’s choice) and with this we have added three different looks ranging from lace bolero top, beaded lace box top and a Duchesse Satin shoulder shrug and sash. With these separates this helps our brides to achieve two different looks without having to purchase two separate dresses.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Where are you located? Do Brides Up North need an appointment?

We are located in Windle, just off the East Lancs road and just outside of Liverpool. This is a perfect central location for Brides in Liverpool, Lancashire, Cheshire and Manchester. Brides do need to arrange appointments with us and this can be done via our website, email, telephone, Facebook or twitter. We do offer weekday, evening and weekend appointments to fit in with our bride’s busy lives!

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Can you give Brides Up North an idea on price?

Our bespoke gowns are affordable whilst not making any compromise on style, quality or customer service. Our dresses begin at £780 (for the silhouette dress to be paired with one of our separates) or for full gowns £1180

However, if a Bride has a tighter budget we will do our best to try and source different fabrics to match their budget.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

What can Brides Up North expect when they come in for an appointment?

We offer a very relaxed atmosphere for brides and their bridesmaids, Mother of the Bride or friends to come and discuss ideas with us and also have fittings for their gowns. We will show our range of Samples from our silk suppliers, showcase samples of wedding gowns we have done and can show testimonials from our past brides. This can all be done over a lovely glass of bubbly or other refreshments.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

How does Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride provide a superior experience to other wedding dress boutiques?

We are able to offer a very personal and friendly experience to our clients. We like to get to know our clients and learn as much as possible about their wedding. We do not hurry our brides during their appointments as other wedding dress boutiques do. We encourage our brides to have as much input as they wish and they can give us a call any time with further queries or suggestions. Furthermore, as they are having their item custom-made their alterations will be included in the price (all of our client’s are given two lots of alterations for wedding gowns, anything additional will be charged per hour). Following the completion of the garment we offer additional services to dress the bride/ bridal party on the day of the wedding and to also dry clean and package their gown after their wedding day.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Can you also create bridesmaid and Mother of The Bride dresses?  Tell us about your bridesmaid collection?

We do also offer the bespoke service to bridesmaids, Mother of Bride/ Groom and wedding guests. We are currently working on our Bridesmaids Collection – a collection of nudes and soft pink dresses each of different style. Something we have found to be increasingly popular is for bridesmaids to each wear slightly different style dresses. After speaking with lots of past bridesmaids we have found that sometimes it is very difficult to find a style that suits up to 4/5/6 different girls all with varying shapes and sizes. We encourage our clients to select bridesmaids styles that their maids will feel confident and gorgeous in. Our bridesmaids collection will be a range of long and short dresses, some strapless and some with straps, appealing to all shapes and sizes!

In the past our Mother of the Bride/ Groom outfits have been done by individual referrals rather than based on a collection. We have made some beautiful outfits in the past in either plain or printed silks, with matching bolero or long jackets. These outfits will also include a boned bodice within the fabric to add extra support and comfort for our clients.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

What sort of accessories do you offer?

For brides we can create veils of all lengths and style from Birdcage to Cathedral and we are able to match these to their gowns and laces used.  In addition to veils we can also do covered clutch bags to match our Mother of the Bride/ Groom outfits or bridesmaids dresses.  We welcome people to get in touch with us if they have any other design ideas and we will always do our best to create these.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Who would be a ‘Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride’?

A ‘Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride’ is a Bride that desires a unique and design-led wedding gown. One that will be suited exactly to them and that will be a reflection of their personality and individual style. To have a bespoke wedding dress is to have a wedding dress that nobody else will wear, something that is truly unique and special to them.

Many of our brides have been disappointed with dresses they have tried on in other wedding dress boutiques or have found a style that they really like but it has features such as straps or fabrics that they aren’t happy with. For these brides we are able to develop their design ideas and offer them something that is exactly right for them without the compromise.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

What would you choose to wear if you were getting married?

I’m not married yet, although I do already know what style gown I would like. I am torn between an all lace strapless fitted bodice, fishtail train gown with lace shoulder cape to be worn in the day (taken off at night). If I don’t go for all over lace I would have the same style in a stiff Duchesse Satin, very fitted with a narrow bow around my waist but again with small shoulder cape to cover any cleavage or arms during my day ceremony and allows me to take off for the evening and transform my gown for the night by adding an embellished waist belt.

Kirstie McNulty Photography for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

How can Brides Up North get in touch with you or find out more?

You can visit our brand new website at www.jessicabennettbespokebride.co.uk, contact us by email at info@jessicabennettbespokebride.co.uk or call us on 07852 158 566.  We are also on Twitter and Facebook, come and say hello!

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Kirstie McNulty for Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride

Jessica Bennett Bespoke Bride is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Diary Date: Stunning Sample Sale At The White Room, Sheffield

December 16th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Jenny Packham at The White Room Sheffield

I’m popping by this afternoon with a date for your diaries from Brides Up North exhibitor The White Room Sheffield.

In their special sample sale on Saturday 11th January 2014, The White Room will be offering Brides Up North a unique opportunity to buy a beautiful couture wedding gown by one of the most prestigious bridal designers around including Jenny Packham, Sassi Holford, Stephanie Allin and Claire Pettibone.

Jenny Packham at The White Room Sheffield

Chloe of The White Room says: Some of our beautiful samples are ‘as new’ whilst others are discontinued or need a new home! We also have a selection of gowns at £500 and under. All gowns as ex boutique samples and are UK sizes 12 – 14. We will also have accessories and shoes in the sale too, starting from £25. 

Doors open from 10am and although this is a sample sale, we work on a first come first served basis so the day will not be self service – we will have a welcoming team to greet you and to help you try and buy your dress.  All dresses can be stored at The White Room however we cannot facilitate fittings but can advise on a brilliant seamstress who can. 

A few words of advice….

We strongly recommend that you have already tried on bridal dresses so that you have an idea of what shape and style suits you best.

A sale day is not the best environment for someone trying on for the first time or to get ideas, as we are unable to give you the level of service or time, so we suggest that you make an appointment separately and prior to our sample sale so that it will not be your very first time trying on bridal gowns.

Sample sizes generally are 12 and 14, but there are always a small selection of both smaller and larger pieces.

At a sample sale you do not have the luxury of time to go away and think, because the dress is likely to be bought by the next person who tries it on… please come ready to make a decision. 

This is great opportunity to find a beautiful designer dress at a price that you can afford, so be ready to buy if you fall in love with your dream dress and we are looking forward to seeing you!

Any questions? Call or e-mail The White Room on 0114 272 2336 or email chloe@whiteroombridal.co.uk

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 supplied by The White Room Sheffield

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Delicate Threads. The Designer Series: Naomi Neoh Secret Garden 2014 Collection

September 30th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Naomi Neoh

I’m thrilled to welcome one of my very favourite wedding dress designers to the pages of the wedding blog this evening – I’ve been swooning ever since discovering the Naomi Neoh bridal label, and can’t wait to share her latest collection with you all. 

As well as being super duper stunning, these dresses are clever too – and we all know that’s a winning combination.  Ex-physicist Naomi designs with the real bride in mind and nearly all her designs have lightweight but effective corsetry inside to give every size and shape of bride the perfect silhouette in her wedding dress.  A beautiful science, if you ask me.  Let’s meet her…

Naomi Neoh

Celeste

What is your style philosophy?

Style and elegance with romance and joy.  Body friendly dresses – corsetry is key.

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Clementine

Clementine

Tell us about the new collection by Naomi Neoh? What were your inspirations? 

This collection is esoteric, dreamy and ethereal with the romance of pre-Raphaelites.  The gowns are gentle, detailed and have slim lines with super light lace interwoven into the design and look amazing against the skin.  Layering of sheer fabrics and subtle antique tones creates a movement of colour for elegant dancing dresses. 

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Dahlia

Dahlia

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Dahlia

Where do you look for inspiration?

Ginger Rogers – I watched a lot of the Ginger Rogers old movies to get the inspiration for this collection!

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Fleur

Fleur

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Fleur

What fabrics and embellishments were chosen for the new collection and why?

We’re using more texture in these gowns – we have a plisse chiffon which is delicately pleated and adds a different dimension to the gowns.  There are more colours: peach, apricot, powder pink, and antique ivory.  I still love to use flowers but these are smaller and more delicate.  You’ll be seeing lots of lace – small patterns, light weight weaves and delicate threads.

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Fleur 5

Do you have a personal favourite from the new collection? 

Oh it’s really hard – its all about getting the right dress on the right person – that’s when the magic happens.  But I do love Peony right now – it will probably change next week – because she has subtle colour, delicate lace on the back and arms, flattering pleating and an elegant silhouette.

How do you decide on the “names” for your gowns?

This collection were all named after flowers.

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Lily

Lily

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Orchid

Orchid

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Dahlia

Dahlia

What sizes are available in your gowns? 

6 to 16 and then made to measure if you want it or need it up to any size. 

What is the retail price range for your designs?

£2000 to £3000 but there are a few special ones which are more. 

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Orchid

Orchid

What sets Naomi Neoh apart from other bridal wear brands?

Commitment, passion, dedication to making distinctive, beautifully balanced, elegant gowns which we love to try on and we hope you will delight in wearing.  An absolute obsession with fabrics, sourcing the best and most distinctive silks and laces. 

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Peony

Peony

How did you get into wedding dress design – what is your story?

I took a curious path to my career as a dress designer.  I read physics at Durham and worked as an IT consultant and merchandiser before finding my true calling. Fabric has always been my first love – and bridal wear allows an indulgence into the most luxurious silks, laces and embellishments. I create dresses which feel fabulous to wear as well as making you look amazing.

Since the launch of my first bridal collection in 2008, the brand has grown into a dedicated team working from the West Dulwich studio where all the gowns are created.

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Penelope

Penelope

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Penelope

Was there a defining point in your career that made your business the success that it is today?

When I decided to make a super light pink wedding dress – ‘Dita’. 

What are your plans for the future?

Well I don’t really know but I love to explore and try new things, so we’ll see, at the moment I’m thinking about creating a super high end range to indulge all our fabric fantasies. 

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Snowdrop

Snowdrop

Is this your dream career? 

Running your own business is a lifestyle more than a career – it is definitely for me.  I have a genetic condition which flares up every few years and leaves me bedridden for months and sometimes years, running my own business allows me the flexibility to work when I can, and keeps me going on the tough days.

What would “a day in the life” at Naomi Neoh HQ be like?

I think it’s creative, fun, hard work, inspiring, challenging and constantly changing.

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Violette

Violette

Where do you go and what do you do to relax?

I find it very hard to relax – I have to be forced into it!  I like yoga, walking in the countryside, cooking, gardening, reading, seeing my friends, and I keep promising myself to practice the piano – a good Beethoven sonata is a great stress reliever.  I’m a recent member of the National Trust and I’m loving the palaces and great houses in the beautiful rolling hills of the British countryside – very inspiring.

Naomi Neoh Secret Garden Collection Violette

What are your “best things” in life?

Love, friendship and happiness, and the simple things: a freshly made bed, ripe summer fruits, seeing your plants grow.

How can Brides Up North readers get in touch with you/ see more of your designs? 

Visit our website at www.naomineoh.com or contact us through our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Naomineoh

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 as supplied by Naomi Neoh

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Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

 

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Eye Candy: Justin Alexander 2014 Collection

August 21st, 2013 | Julia Braime

Justin Alexander 2014 Collection

Fancy a little wedding dress hunting of a Wednesday?  I thought so.

Today’s 2014 collection sneak peek comes from the king of the swinging 1950’s style skirt, the great Justin Alexander.  This season, the label has added an art deco influence to their classically beautiful gowns.  There’s sparkle, there’s beading and there’s lashings of lace, tulle and plenty of silk.   

Even better? This is a brand with a strong Northern presence.  All dresses featured are or soon will be available to try on and buy at Brides Up North Featured Supplier Mia Sposa Bridal & Menswear, Newcastle Upon Tyne.

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Haute Grace. The Designer Series: The Seams Collection 2014 By Jesús Peiró

July 31st, 2013 | Julia Braime

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I am in the privileged position of obtaining access to all my favourite bridal designers for a series of exclusive interviews here on Brides Up North, where they’ll be giving you a sneak peek at their newest designs, sharing the inspirations behind the collections and giving you a glance into their (very beautiful) world.  These are the gowns that will be landing in a wedding dress boutique near you soon.

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Today I’m celebrating 25 years of and introducing one of my very favourite bridal design houses, the gorgeous Jesús Peiró.  Inspired by the tradition and history of the dressmaking atelier, their new collection celebrates 25 years of cutting-edge haute couture under the Jesús Peiró  brand.  
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Reflecting the current trend toward simplicity and minimalism, the Seams Collection is a fusion of design between the fabric and the line. Moving away from the richness and intricate detailing of embroidery, damask and embossing, to light and airy fabrics such as tulle, organza and gauze, the collection is the perfect balance of slender, willowy silhouettes and big volumes.  

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Accessories and details are the artisan elements that infuse the gowns with touches of dressmaking; white detailing imitates the reels of thread or the seamstress’ chalk markings while the black ribbons represent the structure of the mannequins, the pins and trimmings.  

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The Seams Collection express 25 years of dressmaking perfection and commitment, paying tribute to the meticulous work of the Jesús Peiró team in delivering unique, impeccable gowns time and again. 

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As we chat to head designer Merché Segarra, and with images fresh from Barcelona Bridal Week, I hope you love these beauties as much as I do. 

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Please introduce Jesús Peiró and tell us a little about your brand.

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Jesús Peiró is a bridal gown company with 25 years’ experience specialising in the creation of wedding gowns. We pay very close attention to quality and excellent service and the hallmark of our collections is the tailored craftsmanship of the gowns.

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What is your style philosophy?

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To strive for excellence in the final product, to convey to the bride-to-be the company’s passion for quality, beauty and attention to detail in the dress itself and in its final appearance.

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Tell us about the new Collection by Jesús Peiró. What were your inspirations behind this beautiful collection?

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As we are celebrating our 25th anniversary, we have based this collection on our DNA, our very essence. This is above all couture. So we start with the image of an haute-couture model, with its black straps that mark its constituent parts. With these black tones we construct a styling of embellishments that complement the details in the gowns.

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Where do you look for inspiration?

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In the world of fashion, since we are a fashion house that is keenly aware of new trends. Also we constantly look back at haute couture, to recapture its classical elegance and the fine proportions of what is a very important garment.

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What sort of woman do you design for; did you have a specific “muse” for this Collection?

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My muse this year is a model, an anonymous woman who moves with the grace of a ballerina. She is delicate, feminine and subtly spontaneous.

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What fabrics and embellishments were chosen for the new Collection and why?

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Classic smooth fabrics like velvet, organzas, and tulles to represent the various types of lines. From the most structured to the most soft  Embossed fabrics, damask-like, embroidered, and guipure laces that enrich the collection because they give the gown an air of distinction and added volume.

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The details complement this important presence that is so characteristic of rich fabric, with accents of light and textures such as stones, straps and even feathers, occasionally.

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Do you have a personal favourite from the new Collection? Which piece and why?

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I really like gowns that have a hint of lingerie. Because they are delicate, very subtle and give the bride-to-be a look that is both laid back and delicate at the same time.

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Do you have a “signature” piece?

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Yes, a pencil gown with a halter bust line and an abstract motif at the waist.

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What sizes are available in your gowns? Are your pieces made to measure?

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They can be ordered as off the peg standard sizes and we can also do special sizes.

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What is the retail price range for your designs?

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Most of the collection falls in the £1,300 – £2,500 price range with some of the “luxe” fabric or heavily embellished gowns falling in the £2,500 – £4,500 bracket.

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What sets Jesús Peiró apart from other bridal wear brands?

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What sets us apart is our commitment to quality in everything we do, the care we take of our customers, excellent service and craftsmanship that is renowned for being second to none.

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How did you get into wedding dress design – what is your story?

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When I completed my studies in Fine Arts, Fashion Design and my Masters’ Degree in Fashion Technology in Milan, I started working in the made-to-measure sector.  Ten years later the owner of Intersposa contacted me and asked me to design Jesus Peiro collections. This is my tenth year with the firm.

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What would “a day in the life” at Jesús Peiró HQ be like?

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It’s a combination of the technical side of observing the dressmaking process and the creative side of coming up with new designs, inspecting samples of materials and meetings with both the management and other members of the team. It’s never monotonous and the working atmosphere is open and very dynamic.

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Where do you go and what do you do to relax?

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Whenever I can, I go with my family to our house in the mountains. That’s where I read, cook and go for long walks with my dog.

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What are your “best things” in life?

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No question – my husband and my three children.

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How can Brides Up North Readers get in touch with you or see more of your designs?

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They can visit our website or contact the company directly.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 supplied by Jesús Peiró

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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“An Elegant Art” The Designer Series: Lyn Ashworth

July 18th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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I am in the privileged position of obtaining access to all my favourite bridal designers for a series of exclusive interviews here on Brides Up North, where they’ll be giving you a sneak peek at their newest designs, sharing the inspirations behind the collections and giving you a glance into their (very beautiful) world.  These are the gowns that will be landing in a wedding dress boutique near you soon.

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Darling Paris

Darling Paris

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This afternoon I want to introduce you to Sarah Barrett, the talented lady behind the Lyn Ashworth label.  The Lyn Ashworth by Sarah Barrett brand continues to move forward into exciting times and Sarah’s 2014 collection was one of my very favourites on my recent press trip to White Gallery in London.

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Today we find out more about Sarah and her inspirations, design ethos and more importantly, where you can get your hands on one of her gorgeous gowns for your own wedding day. 

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Buttercream Satin

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Sarah says:  My studio is based in the heart of the Staffordshire countryside on the beautiful Duchy of Lancaster Estate where I am surrounded by the most breath taking fields and woodland. This is where all my dress designs are evolved and manufactured by myself and highly talented and passionate team, using tradition skills and craftsmanship, all of my gowns are created from start to finish by one seamstress and we pride ourselves on flying the Made in England flag.

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Coco Ganache

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At a very young age I was extremely fortunate to have been taught to sew by two incredibly talented people in the theatre industry, Brooking & Chell. From them, I quickly learnt the skills and work ethic that has enabled me to do what I do now. I am very lucky to occasionally still work along-side this team. I class them as dear friends as well as work colleagues.

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Whilst studying fashion at college and then University, I split my time between both the fashion and theatre industries, learning on the job and tapping into a wealth of knowledge, experience and talent which was invaluable and such a privilege. Although having a good education whether at College or University is extremely important, I believe that being hands on and gaining on the job experience teaches you things that the education system cannot.

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It was a natural progression for me to move into the bridal industry where I have done pretty much everything from design and construction of the gowns to the management of shops. I have experienced all sides of the industry for over two decades now.

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I had the pleasure of knowing and working with Lyn Ashworth for a number of years prior to taking over the company. I have always had a great admiration for Lyn whom over the years has designed and created some of the most beautiful wedding dresses in the industry. When Lyn first spoke of her wish to retire from the business and to emigrate back to her birthplace New Zealand, it seemed the most natural thing for me to take over the company.

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The Lyn Ashworth name has been in this industry for over 30 years and I now look to grasp it with both hands and take it through the next 30.

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Heritage Gala

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It has been an honour for me to take over this company and it is extremely important to me to keep the ethos of the company the same, beautifully hand crafted couture that is proudly, Made in England. The ultimate in elegance, where attention to detail, cut, fit and drape is paramount. Lyn spent decades building a reputation for quality and I will continue this further to ensure that we are constantly improving our quality and fit. A Lyn Ashworth by Sarah Barrett dress is a creation in itself and a work of art in its own right. My skilled team of cutters and seamstresses and I are dedicated to creating each gown with care and attention to every detail. Each dress is made with love and precision using some of the most beautiful fabrics in the world. My dresses are not just about ever changing fashion; they are about a unique and special craft and creating something of timeless beauty.

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HoneySuckle

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My aspiration is to slow down the fashion industry at times and to allow the artistry to create an old mystique for today’s modern woman. Attention to detail and couture craftsmanship is my trademark. These elements are paramount to my business at all times. From the shape of the buttons to the fine hand couture stitching, these details may seem insignificant to some people, however for me, I would not have my dresses manufactured any other way.

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Darling Paris

Darling Paris

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The vision for the 2014 Romantic Elegance Collection comes from a time when dressing was an elegant art.

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Each dress has been designed to be cherished and loved encapsulating the imagination of all my brides. Styles have been refined showcasing a timelessly modern yet romantic and feminine structure. The finest quality bodices are complimented beautifully by sweeping pleats in the most exquisite silks, laces, crepe satin and organza. With subtle understated luxuries of graceful sleeves and belts accentuating ball gown waists.

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Laced in Tradition

Laced in Tradition

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Laced in Tradition

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This collection is very personal to me as it showcases what is to be an exciting future for this Made in England couture house. The signature Lyn Ashworth dress of beautiful organza skirts and fitted-bodices that are somewhat our trademark will always be an important element to this company. However, a Lyn Ashworth by Sarah Barrett dress is so much more. I take my inspiration from all sources. From the surrounding fields and woodlands, flower meadows and wildlife to artwork, jewellery and architecture from wherever I am and whatever I see. For me fashion and design should have no boundaries. My gowns are designed to be worn with no boundaries, therefore designed for all women. A Lyn Ashworth by Sarah Barrett bride should be able to choose from any of my collections with ease knowing that the dress they chose will fit impeccably and be an extension of there own style and personality and the beauty of my dresses are they are for all women irrespective of age and size, whether getting married in the country, in the city, in a church or the middle of a beautiful summer meadow. Saying their vows on a sandy beach, in New York or at the top of the Eiffel Tower.

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Ivory Truffle Tea

Ivory Truffle Tea

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It is extremely important to me that all my designs are made from the most exquisite fabrics and where possible locally sourced. For instance, in the 2014 Romantic Elegance Collection we have been working with the most beautiful English lace. This is made in a breath-taking old mill that is less than an hour away from the studio. It is wonderful to be able to drive to the mill, pick the lace straight from the loom, head back to the studio to cut out and then manufacture a dress for one of my beautiful brides.

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Song Bird

Song Bird

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Song Bird

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I see the key trends for 2014 a little more demure, overlays with sleeves and the prettiest of jackets. English cotton lace and delicate French silk lace compliment each other beautifully, gathered into frills on necklines and cuffs. Colour palettes are a mixture of warmer sea pearl tones or crisp ivory all adorned with velvet and satin ties in rich colour tones of blue, pink, nude or olive green.

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Scattered Blossom

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Accessories are key to this trend with each gown having the ability to evolve from day through to evening, swapping a flower velvet brooch belt for a sparkly starry night belt or alternatively, change a simple buckle belt for a ribbon art deco sash. Also, the ability to remove pretty lace jackets and straps to give a more evening look to the gown for the reception or simply adding a cotton lace wrap to cover the shoulders as evening falls. A Lyn Ashworth bride has the option to evolve her dress to her own personality and style, this I believe is the key to each and every bride finding and having her dream dress. Let your imagination run wild! Be confident that you can ask for changes.

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Sweet Anniversary

Sweet Anniversary

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A Lyn Ashworth gown can be brought direct from my stockists, the prices starting from £1600.00. The key to finding “the one” I believe is to stay true to yourself. I believe that when looking for your wedding gown it is all about finding a shape that is not only sophisticated and elegant, but also flatters each individual bride, simple elegant with timeless style. “A wedding gown should be the loveliest dress she will ever wear”. When a bride is first seen by her guests, the first thought by those present should be “How amazingly beautiful she is”. That should then be followed by “How exquisite her dress looks”. The wedding gown is an expression of a brides personality and an extension of herself.

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Sweet Anniversary Tea

Sweet Anniversary Tea

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I have lovely stockists who are listed on the web site and they are dedicated to offering the Lyn Ashworth brand and ethos. They have the ability to offer brides the options to evolve her dress and the option of a made to measure and also toile service if so required. Or for those brides who truly wish to experience and enjoy a bespoke service this is available direct from the studio. My team and I work closely with each individual client to achieve perfection and precision for her perfect dress.  Maintaining the integrity of a design, whilst making adjustments to suit each individual clients figure, personal preferences and personality is always a balancing act. We ensure that we go to great lengths to achieve them all. Prices for our studio appointments are available upon request, a contact form is available from the website.

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Willow Maiden

Willow Maiden

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As a designer I feel it is extremely important to showcase new, up and coming talent. In recent decades we have lost generations of hugely talented people in this field through the decline in manufacturing here in the UK.

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I work very closely with my brother Paul Barrett who is the Course Director at the Theatre Performance and Event Design Course at Birmingham City University. Paul and I share a great passion for the arts and have worked as a team on many projects over the years. Together we are able to give students guidance and a chance to learn and develop skills. For instance for the 2013 and more recently 2014 Collection we held the photo shoot at the University where we were able to use the state of art photo studio. My team and I along with my fabulous photographer Bruce Smith had a blast with chosen students and graduates including two amazingly talented guys; Ben & Callum from Dontfret Media, who have injected life and energy into our amazing new website.

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With the new 2014 collection we have incorporated behind the scenes videos from the photo shoot for all the dress. This will enable brides to see the dresses moving with ease. A Lyn Ashworth is about elegance and style but also having fun.

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What is the future for the Lyn Ashworth brand? Well that is simple, to continue doing what we do best, making beautiful, romantic, British manufactured dresses in the heart of the Staffordshire countryside, sourcing the best fabrics possible and encouraging new young talent into the industry. I aim in time to take the brand overseas where we can give brides all over the world the chance to wear the most beautiful hand crafted couture from the heart of the English Countryside.

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Visit Sarah’s website at www.lynashworth.co.uk to find out more.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 supplied by Sarah Barrett at Lyn Ashworth

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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The Sophisticate. Eye Candy: Augusta Jones 2014

July 18th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Ali

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I’m all of a flutter with all of the new season pretty that keeps landing in my inbox, stalking the catwalks, and arriving in my favourite regional bridal boutiques.  On Tuesday I gave you a sneak peek at the latest collection from wedding blog favourite Jenny Packham, and this morning I’ve some brand new eye candy for you from another designer close to my heart (I was this close to choosing one of their gowns for my own wedding day back in 2010) the fabulous Augusta Jones.

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A one time US export, the label now has firm roots in the UK, and plenty of Northern stockists if you fancy setting off on a dress hunt after this morning’s feature.   

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Light and sophisticated, dreamy and elegant; inspired by Great Gatsby, Old Hollywood Glamour and the English Rose. The Augusta Jones 2014 collection has certainly proven to have been a show stopper so far! With a large collection of timeless styles and beautiful detailing, such as daring low backs and delicate Chantilly lace to accent stunning silhouettes, this could quite possibly be their best collection yet.

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Alaina

Alaina

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Augusta Jones says: Our designs present a fresh and contemporary approach to stylish wedding gowns. The concept behind our label is beautifully tailored gowns with lean, clean lines. With an unusually wide range of embroideries and delicate beadwork to choose from there is no shortage of ideas for the bride. 

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Started in early 1999 we set out to do things differently, offering brides a way to create their own personal style.  The range of bridal gowns fulfil three basic requirements: beautiful styling; flexibility of the range to suit a variety of shapes; and affordability.   

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Isabella

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The key theme this season is the gorgeous keyhole back that tapers right down to the small of the waist. Layering of mixed laces lend a relaxed flow to gowns. Lace boat-necklines and fitted A-lines skirts pepper this collection for a sleek, stylish look. Mix and match with the ever growing range of belts, sashes and shrugs allows for more personalized styling.

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Visit the Augusta Jones website for stockist details

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You can also visit the Augusta Jones blog to see real brides rocking their gorgeous range of gowns.  If you are an Augusta Jones bride they (and I!) would love to hear from you!  Get in touch.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Augusta Jones

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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