January 9th, 2018 | Rachel Parry
There’s no doubt that picking your bridesmaids can be a tricky task, but often choosing what they will wear for the big day can be even more difficult. There are different colours and styles to debate, and while one of your leading ladies might love your suggestions, another could take a little more convincing.
In order to help ensure shopping for your gals is an enjoyable rather than exasperating experience, we’re introducing you to our fabulous Sponsor Hannah of Joy’s Bella Bridesmaids, who has numerous bridesmaid dress designers and styles all under one roof with something to suit all ages, preferences and styles.
Frustrated that there wasn’t a special boutique that catered for groups of ladies to find the perfect gowns for their key role in the proceedings, owner Hannah Robinson set up Joy’s Bella Bridesmaids in North Yorkshire, which has proved hugely successful as news of its unique offering has spread.
With more than 300 different dress styles stocked at the boutique and a full floor dedicated to trying and fitting with spacious changing rooms and comfortable seating for brides to have fun with their bridesmaids, this is serious wedding #girlsquad heaven!
When and why did you decide to set up Joy’s Bella Bridesmaids?
hannah says: I set up the boutique in September 2015, I married in May 2015, and my sister got married the year before. We both really struggled to find somewhere to go to choose bridesmaids dresses. We found we had an amazing experience as a bride choosing our bridal gown but when it came to buying the bridesmaids dresses we were really limited. We couldn’t find a boutique that had a large selection of styles, colours and designers to try all in one place. I thought that there must be a better way to do things which led to opening Joy’s Bella Bridesmaids. I wanted to create the same experience for bridesmaids as the bride has. You choose your family and your best friends to be your bridesmaids, it is such an important and special time.
Where is Joy’s Bella Bridesmaids located and can you describe the boutique?
The boutique is in a rural location between York and Selby, in a converted granary. It’s definitely peaceful and a very relaxed atmosphere. When I was choosing premises for the shop I wanted somewhere a little off the beaten track with a lot of space and plenty of parking right outside. I think The Old Granary is perfect!
Can you tell us a little about the designers that you stock at the boutique?
I stock Sorella Vita, Dessy, twobirds and Amanda Wyatt. I wanted to have the highest quality designers that offer the largest range of styles and colours. Each of my designers offer something different, whether it’s Dessy who offer such a variety of fabrics, Sorella Vita with their sequin collections, twobirds which have such an ingenious solution for a large number of bridesmaids or Amanda Wyatt who have matching styles for all ages.
How do you select the designers that you stock?
A lot of research! The designers have to mirror the image and feel that I am creating within the boutique, they have to be so focused on getting it right for the bride.
Do you also stock flower girl dresses too?
I do stock flower girls dresses, they range from classic ivory dresses with matching sash to so many different styles to coordinate with adult dresses.
July 13th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
image source, photography by Lucy G Photography
It’s that time once again when we hand over the blogging reins to our lovely guest writer, Carrie Marsden of our media partner Love Our Wedding Magazine, to offer her top wedding advice, inspo and ideas.
For today’s post, she’s talking flowergirls, and more specifically, how to keep the fine little helpers on form throughout the big day…
Carrie says: We’re besotted with the idea of a traditional wedding party, complete with the fairytale troupe of gorgeous little flowergirls. Inspired by Pippa Middleton’s recent nuptials and her pretty-as-a-picture party of little helpers, we felt moved to devoting some time to the cutest guests of them all. So, here’s our guide to keeping your precious flowergirls happy, entertained, and most of all, looking gorgeous!
image source, photography by Miki Photography
Little girls love to be dressed as little princesses and as flowergirls, this is their moment in the spotlight! We have heard it on very good authority (from a four-year-old flowergirl, no less) that this was her day, never mind the bride’s! Make sure you factor in shopping trips and fittings with your little ones (if you’re brave enough, do them all in one go!). Absolutely make a day of it with them and share in their excitement – little girls are the best audience for getting excited with (and can talk about princess dresses for hours…).
Your princesses will need a pair of fabulous shoes to match that fairytale dress – and little girls’ shoes don’t come any more fabulous these days. Choose from colourful or sparkling options for a flowergirl that likes to stand out, or alternatively a pair of ballerina-style pumps in soft satin for a little lady that likes a touch of class.
image source, photography by Photography34
Little ones will love to feel a part of your day, and giving them a little responsibility, whether it’s in charge of holding your veil as you walk down the aisle or throwing confetti as you leave the church – they like to know they’re important! Treating your flowergirls like your main maids will keep them on board and make them feel loved.
image source, photography by Stephen McGowan Wedding Photography
It’s a brave bride who includes flowergirls in her day and then doesn’t cater for those moments when they get a little bored. Gone are the days when children were seen but not heard; today’s little girls will most certainly be heard if they want to, so make sure it’s for all the right reasons – because they’re giggling to the heavens above and having so much fun! We love the idea of photo booths with children’s dressing-up, as well as including games and sweet stands. A trusty grown-up maid in charge of the little ones is also a top idea (follow Pippa Middleton’s lead and ask your older sister to do it – if it’s good enough for royalty!)
image source, photography by Emily & Katy Photography
Your little flowergirls will love nothing more than being a part of your day and sharing in the excitement, though it’s nice to rewards their efforts with a gift. Trinkets that say thank you in style include engraved photo frames with you and the flowergirl on the day, as well as lockets and charm bracelets for when they get a little older. Perfect for on the day, however, is a ‘flowergirl teddy’ dressed in an identical outfit to your mini maid, or for that Disney-fairy perfection, a sparkling wand!
Love Our Wedding is stocked by hundreds of top bridal boutiques, venues and fairs nationwide. Visit loveourweddingmag.com to download or order your FREE monthly copy today!
February 10th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
Allure 1435 & 1436
We’re seeing lots of exciting bridesmaid trends coming up in 2017, which means that come the big day, your leading ladies can be looking as stylish as you (well, almost!).
This afternoon we’re putting the blog in the safe hands of our guest writer, the lovely Izzy Hicks of our media partner, Love Our Wedding Magazine, to tell us about the top bridesmaid trends for the year ahead.
Izzy says: Floral wedding gowns were popular in designers’ 2016 collections, so it’s no surprise that bridesmaids are jumping on the bandwagon too with stunning flower print dresses. This trend can be worn a few different ways: in different colours for a cute vintage vibe, in different lengths but a matching print for an updated take on mix and match maids, or with just the maid of honour in floral print to make her really stand out! A top label for floral prints this season is Allure.
Christina Wu 22704
One of our favourite bridesmaid trends this year is sequins! Luckily for magpie brides, this trend is appearing in more and more 2017 bridesmaid collections, meaning they can pick sparkling gowns in a number of different styles and colours. Try full-length sequins for Jessica Rabbit glam, mixed metallics for an Instagram-worthy bridal party or sequin tops with chiffon or tulle skirts for just a hint of sparkle.
Look to Christina Wu Celebration for some dazzling options.
Kelsey Rose Style 12559
Another bridesmaid trend taken from bridal is the separates. Instead of dresses, designers are including separate tops and skirts (or even trousers!) in their bridesmaid collections so that brides can mix and match styles for their maids. Not only does this mean that you can change up the styles depending on your bridesmaids’ preferences and body shapes, but they’re more likely to be able to wear the separate pieces again. We especially love this look combined with an on-trend crop top, perfect for boho or destination weddings. Our favourite label for separates this season is Kelsey Rose.
Special Day Diamond Collection D16556
With more brides opting for 1950s-inspired tea-length wedding dresses, 2017 will be the year to have matching bridesmaids. Tea-length tulle gowns look cute on young bridesmaids and elegant on adult maids, and make the perfect choice for a vintage-inspired wedding theme. Add brightly-coloured petticoats for a fun retro twist! Special Day Ireland has some stunning tea-length tulle examples in its collection.
Jasmine B2 Style B193011
This pretty detail updates a classic bridesmaid dress and brings it right into 2017. The cold shoulder silhouette is the ideal way to balance coverage with just a little skin showing, and flatters bridesmaids of all shapes and sizes. Wear it in pastel colours for a dreamy, summer boho vibe, or switch it up for winter with rich jewel shades. A great label for this look is Jasmine B2.
November 4th, 2016 | Julia Braime
For today’s Friday Fabulous we’re turning our attention to brides’ leading ladies, as it’s important for a girl and all her #squad to look and feel amazing too, right?
So for those in search of beautiful dresses in a gorgeous range of colours, styles and fabrics to suit all ages, we give you the stunning bridesmaid collection from our wonderful Sponsor, Amanda Wyatt.
Made famous for her perfect fit, British designer Amanda doesn’t stop at providing a dream dress for the bride, but for adult and teenage bridesmaids, plus cute little flower girls too! The beautiful gowns are sure to please all, with short and full length designs to choose from, featuring pretty detailing in pleated bodices, illusion necklines and dreamy tulle skirts.
Perfect for those wanting to mix and match their maids, brides can pick one style in a variety of different colours, or alternatively chose just one hue but mix up the dress designs with short sleeve, twisted strap and bateau neckline options, to name but a few.
We have to say the star of the show for us in these new campaign images has to be the sweet little flower girl, particularly the shot of her slipping into those gold sparkly heels – a girl after our own hearts for sure!
November 16th, 2015 | Julia Braime
Bridesmaids. As much as you love your best girls and they love you, let’s face it – the dress shopping bit can end up being a bit of a nightmare. Different styles, tastes and body shapes can make for some uncomfortable changing room situations. Luckily, Brides Up North favourite amanda wyatt is here to help with her new line of bridesmaid dresses, in enough colour, fabric and style combinations to keep even the fussiest of friends happy!
Made famous for her perfect fit, attention to detail and innovative designs Amanda Wyatt has celebrated over 20 years at the forefront of British bridal design and draws on inspiration from her love of fashion, keeping a firm eye on all the latest emerging trends from the fashion catwalks.
The new collection of bridesmaid gowns are available in over 40 colour shades and 25 varying styles from short to long, strapless, one-shoulder and more. The fabrics in the collection span from chiffon and satin to lace and the gowns can be ordered in any style, colour and fabric, covering all ages from baby to teen and adult.
Found in over 80 boutiques nationwide, Amanda’s collection is a great way to make sure that your girls feel truly comfortable, in a gown that compliments their unique body shape and colouring, leaving you plenty of time to get on with the important stuff… bubbly anyone?
For more, visit www.amandawyatt.com
March 13th, 2015 | Julia Braime
via weddingchicks.com, photography by Peaches & Mint
Another Friday, another meaty topic to get our blogging teeth into. Today we discuss a topic that we covered as Official Blogger for The North West Wedding Fair’s magazine this spring and one that many brides-to-be struggle to make a call on – whether or not to involve your bridesmaids in the decision making process when choosing their outfits for the big day.
rachel says: let them choose!
One of a bride-to-be’s top priorities is naturally going to be to look and feel the very best she can for her moment in the limelight. However not too far behind should be the same thought for your bridesmaids, for they too are playing a key role in the proceedings and will not thank you for putting them in unflattering designs and uncomplimentary colours.
Too many cooks can spoil the broth – agreed, but going ahead and choosing the bridesmaids dresses without consulting or involving them is undoubtedly going to lead to some miserable maids come the big day.
You don’t necessarily need to take all your leading ladies on the first shopping trip, but having a discussion with them beforehand will help no end. This gives an opportunity to talk about what colours and designs are on the short list and for a bridesmaid to raise her concerns if she truly feels a certain suggestion would not suit due to her complexion, hair colour or figure.
It’s also an opportunity to discuss the price range, particularly if you are just putting a contribution towards the dresses, or are asking the maids to fully foot the bill for their attire.
The respect has to come from both sides to result in a winning wedding party that looks and feels great on the inside and out. So I say get the gals on board for a shopping trip that you can all enjoy while being honest and fair in your suggestions and choices.
julia says: it’s your decision!
Picture the scene – you’ve found the perfect gown for your maids, it’s in the right price range, it’s the right colour and would fit into the theme beautifully. But come shopping day when your friends see it they each find something they don’t like about it, and worse still they each find a totally different dress that they prefer. Bride meltdown alert.
While in theory it’s a nice idea, including all the bridesmaids in the dress decision making is likely to lead to endless and highly-stressful discussions, shopping trips and tiffs.
To keep the peace I suggest that you build up a mood board of bridesmaid dress ideas that would work well with your big day styling and then run them past a few choice people, such as your mum, the groom and your maid of honour, to get honest feedback before making the final call.
While selecting the shortlist you should also consider your maids’ colouring and figures to try to ensure they will be fairly happy with the outcome. If the maids are buying their own dresses it’s also important not to ask too much of them by looking at designs that carry a high price tag. You might consider intentionally mismatched gowns that work along a particular style or colour theme so they stand more chance of pleasing all parties while still working to your overall vision.
But when all said and done it’s your big day and the ultimate decision should be down to you.
via weddingchicks.com, Photography by Tealily Photography
what you said on Facebook:
Kerry: “Minefield! I chose them for my special girls and with a slight apprehension handed them out… but they were all well received and my girls are happy…at least to my face!”
Keli: “I’ve given mine a colour scheme but let them choose their own! All of them are completely different in personality and body shape so really wanted them to just have something they’re happy with.”
Emma: “I’m paying so I’m deciding!”
Sarah: “My friend (the bride) set up a Pinterest group of possible options for us all to share. Her budget was really tight and last minute. Three of 4=four bridesmaids met up with her and went shopping together, luckily we found one we all liked and that suited us all, it was over her budget so we all paid the difference each. I’d rather pay towards something we all liked than be uncomfortable.”
Rachel: “With six bridesmaids aged 40 to 13 who are all shapes and sizes I ‘ve chosen their dresses. That said I showed them all a picture before they were ordered and they like them.”
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