Bridal Hair

SWEET BLUSH AND BLACKBERRY COTSWOLDS GARDEN WEDDING

This has to be one of my stand out weddings from 2015, as featured on Style Me Pretty recently – a small and intimate garden wedding at Barnsley House & Spa, which I designed and planned for the sweetest couple from Hong Kong.

The inspiration for this design plan actually started with the bride’s favourite scent – Jo Malone Blackberry & Bay – from wild berries in the florals, to fresh rosemary, lavender and rose petal confetti – even the bridesmaids crowns featured fresh herbs, all created by the super talented Georgia from Westwood Design. We almost didn’t have the outdoor ceremony thanks to good old British weather and spells of rain all morning, but at the last minute it cleared in time and we put the brollies aside for a candle lit affair in the gorgeous grounds. This followed with a reception where guests were treated to sweet treats, refreshing drinks and canapés, before inviting them to watch a traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony in the late afternoon setting sun.

 

After the most delicious dinner served by the team at Barnsley House on long tables set with hundreds of rosemary & bay scented candles and flowers, the happy couple led their family and friends back into the gardens for signature cocktails, and cutting of the cake surrounded by sparklers. Faye at The Natural Cake Co creates insanely beautiful cakes whilst using all organic natural ingredients – I styled this rose flavoured cake with Westwood Design using fresh figs, flowers and herbs.

The Bride wore the most gorgeous sparkling evening dress for the first dance a little later on, before The Wedding Smashers kicked off a great night of dancing and entertainment for the newlyweds until the early hours of the morning.

A huge thank you to the cast of amazing artists and creatives involved in this wedding – all credited below.

Jessie

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Photography: Depict Photography | Event Planning, Design + Styling: Jessie Thomson Wedding Planning | Floral Design + Styling: Westwood Design | Cinematography: Mark Brown Films | Wedding Dress: Temperley London | Cake: The Natural Cake Co. | Stationery: Gemma Milly | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Donna Morgan| Hair: Kasia Fortuna | DJ: Wedding Smashers | Celebrant: Grace The Day | String Quartet: Arioso | Transportation: Alex Cars | Venue: Barnsley House | Desserts: Contemporary Cake Designs

VISIT JESSIE’S NEW ONLINE SHOP!

SOFT GREY & FRESH WHITE WEDDING STYLE: THYME AT SOUTHROP

“Minimalism is not a style, it is an attitude, a way of being. It’s a fundamental reaction to noise, visual noise, disorder, vulgarity. Minimalism is the pursuit of the essence of things, not the appearance. Minimalism is beyond time. It is timelessness. It is the stillness of perfection” ~ Massimo Vignelli

I honestly have no idea why it’s taken me quite so long to blog this editorial shoot in full – I published little previews from it here and here but seeing it all together again has made me realise just how talented this group of vendors was (see end of this post for full credits), and it was an absolute joy to curate the shoot for Katie Julia who produces such ethereal and gorgeous images from film.

It was featured by Magnolia Rouge magazine too, and the whole thing just looks even more luxurious in print.

This is a pretty long blog post, but I wanted to put it all in one place without you having to jump all over the place with links, and take you through my design and styling process a little more than I usually would. Hopefully brides-to-be will get little more insight into how I work together with them to create and curate weddings that are personal to them, but also fitting to the setting and the mood of the day.

TABLESCAPE 1

The first tablescape I created was inside the barn at Thyme in Southrop (such a gorgeous wedding venue for intimate celebrations). I commissioned the softest silk linen in a silvery grey which perfectly blended with the grey dining chairs, and I paired it with a slightly more textured greige linen napkin for contrast at each place setting. The fresh white flowers kept the table simple and elegant, with mini grey urns that I reused throughout the shoot. All cutlery and glassware was kept simple too – anything too ornate or pattered would have distracted from the minimalist look I wanted to achieve – yet still keeping it feminine and fresh. The calligraphy grey ink on an off white textured care stock – again, nothing cutesy or themed to the stationery elements. I used my own candles along the table (they actually smelt amazing – “joy” by St Eval if you’re interested!), and brought my own grey, clear and white crystals for the place settings to add a personal touch with individual flower blooms sitting pretty alongside them.

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TABLESCAPE 2

We then moved things outside as I wanted to show my clients how they could achieve a more relaxed al fresco dining style without compromising on the luxe detail that sets their event apart from the rest. You’ll see we installed huge garlands above the tables – which in real life may have wilted in that strong Summer sun, but since we used faux flowers and foliage, no problem there! I used a slightly more relaxed style linen napkin, and switched out the mini votive candles for tall straight edged glass hurricane vases with ivory pillar candles (my pet hate is bright white candles!).

I tore off the back of the folded place name cards so that they’d lie flat on each napkin, and I used a spring of foliage at each setting to pull through the greenery in the setting.

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FASHION 1: GREY BRIDAL/BRIDESMAID DRESS

I adore it when my brides wear colour on their wedding day – whether a bold statement, or more refined in blush or champagne – I also wanted to show how beautiful soft grey can be for a bride, but also for her bridesmaids. This dress was designed by British duo Belle & Bunty and it just draped so amazingly in all the right places. We used a large hand tied bouquet of white flowers with foliage and trailing ribbons and lace. Oh and we couldn’t resist including Katie’s GORGEOUS chihuahua pups!

If you look closely you’ll see I selected natural diamond and gemstone jewellery that matched the simplicity and texture of the dress – the low back would have looked lovely with an up do, but I actually adored how different the softly curled low side pony tail looked with it

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FASHION 2: IVORY/WHITE LONG LACE SLEEVED WEDDING DRESS

Oh how I adored this wedding dress. Again, it has a beautifully low back (I have a thing about them, evidently!), a soft streamlined silhouette in silk with long face sleeve and gorgeous detail on the cuff. Perfect for a church wedding as it’s not too revealing, yet will please those brides not wanting to look too modest. I asked Heidi to create a soft and undone up do, with fresh flowers – though looking at this again it would have absolutely worked with a veil too.

Don’t you love how the lace ribbons mirror the lace in the dress, with the grey ribbons allowing a subtle contrast with all the white? Note too that we purposeful posed this dress against a solid white wall for maximum impact. Nothing detracts from the dress other than natural beauty of those amazing flowers in the bouquet.

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THE WEDDING CAKE

I commissioned this from Jennie as she’s one of my favourite cake designers locally to me in the Cotswolds – she manages to combine delicate detail with a modern touch, and she totally nailed this brief! I styled it against the softest grey painted wall with pillar candles in straight edged glass hurricane vases again. The flower on the cake is in fact made of icing…. stunning.

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THE DETAILS

From soft grey calligraphy on textured card stock, to ethereal jewellery, pretty ribbons in contrasting or tonal colours, candlelight and crystals… the success of any design plan for a wedding is to not forget the details. It’s what makes it personal, it ties it all together so the day feels coherent and the atmosphere flows from room to room. The bridal party looks perfect, and not one element looks out of place in the setting. When styling shoots I often use my own props and other vendors loan me their amazing products of course, but I also always try to work in the decor and furniture that already exists in the venue – it really helps give my clients an idea of how this will work in practice, and is the perfect example of helping couples to translate styled shoots into real weddings.

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I hope you enjoyed that little journey? I know it’s long but trust me, there were SO many more pictures I could have shared here. I think Katie just couldn’t take enough of it in on her cameras! Please do look through the list of vendors below – each and every one of them are amazing.

To see more of my real weddings and editorial shoots featured in blogs and magazines, visit jessiethomson.co.uk.

Jessie x

Photography KATIE JULIA / Styling, planning & coordination JESSIE THOMSON / Florals THE ROSE SHED / Gowns BELLE & BUNTY / Stationery GEMMA MILLY / Jewellery RUTH TOMLINSON / Linens TABLE TO DINE FOR / Hair & make-up HEIDI VINCE / Floral garlands FRIEND OF FAUX / Assistant stylist WESTWOOD DESIGN / Model AMY NEVILLE / Venue THYME AT SOUTHROP

To browse Jessie’s favourite products, visit the shop at Jessie Loves!

BRIDESMAID STYLE: PETROL BLUE DRESS & MESSY BUN

Whether you are a bride wanting something super chic, or you are looking for the perfect bridesmaid dresses to compliment your leading ladies – I always think dresses by British designer duo Belle & Bunty are a beautiful style choice, and the colour of this petrol blue dress totally stole my heart on a recent shoot I created at Thyme Barn at Southrop, in the Cotswolds.

I can’t wait to share more from the full shoot with Katie Julia, but this dress absolutely deserved its moment in the spotlight. Would you dare to switch traditional white for bold blue? Or would you choose something blue for your maids?


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CREDITS

Styling: Jessie Thomson | Photography: Katie Julia | Dress: Belle & Bunty | Hair & Make Up: Heidi Vince | Jewellery: Ruth Tomlinson | Flowers: The Rose Shed | Venue: Thyme Barn

As featured in Wedding Sparrow.

FIVE BEST BEAUTY BUYS FOR BRIDES

As a wedding planner I’m often called on for advice outside of what most would consider “normal” duties! One of them is to recommend beauty products to brides, whom almost always want to be looking their absolute best on their big day (this usually means long locks, clear skin and healthy nails!). So here are a few of my tried and tested products, from personal experience and feedback from my lovely ladies.

1. EVE LOM CLEANSER

Described by Vogue as “probably the best cleanser in the world”, this has been my number one skin care recommendation since I first tried it 5 years ago – it’s a balm that effectively cleanses, exfoliates and tones with the regime that includes massage using a muslin cloth. It’s expensive but lasts forever, and basically replaces a lot of your facial care steps (unless you are me, and you buy new products simply because the packaging is pretty!).

2. VICHY IDEALIA SMOOTHING AND ILLUMINATING CREAM

I’ve experimented with a lot of moisturisers, a lot! This one is my all time fave, for sure. It’s totally gentle, suits all skin types, smells lovely and makes your skin feel all glowy. The packaging isn’t anything to write home about, but I kinda like the old school French pharmacy looking products on my shelf. It is both rich and light, which is hard to find in a moisturiser I think.

3. BAUME DE ROSE, BY TERRY

My make up artist (the extremely lovely Sophie Everett) introduced me to by Terry when I got married, and I adore this lip balm that also doubles up as a fabulous treatment for nail cuticles. Good news, they also do them in tinted colours now!

4. AVEDA DAMAGE REMEDY

The whole collection of hair treatments in this range is amazing, totally restores hair that’s been frazzled by heat/bleach/sun (or in my case all three!). Fabulous for those ladies (99% of us) who want to grow our hair out for TBD (The Big Day).

5. LUSH DADDY-O SHAMPOO

If like me your hair turns a little brassy a couple of weeks post highlights, then you definitely need a purple shampoo. This one smells amazing and is really pigmented, so works a treat! I reviewed it before here I’m also about to trial this one from Bleach London, who are constantly tempting me to buy their lilac hair dye. I’m not brave enough though, not nearly! The Aveda shampoo and conditioner called Blue Malva is also scent-a-licious but I find it’s not so pigmented. Perhaps better for every day use though!

Anyone else got favourite products for brides-to-be that they’d like to share? I avoided the nitty gritty stuff like teeth whitening, tanning and waxing – needless to say with all that prep, what you pay for is what you get, and don’t try anything new close to the wedding date!

Jessie

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IMAGE CREDIT: Taylor Barnes Photography

 

FLORAL CROWN: DIY Bridal Hair Accessories

I recently shared a fantastic tutorial from top UK florist Rachel Husband at The Rose Shed who kindly gave advice on how to create the sweet buttonholes as seen on Style Me Pretty and in this shoot with Taylor Barnes Photography.

Rachel has very sweetly agreed to return with some simple steps and professional tips on how to achieve the hair florals that she also created for the shoot.

Floral Crown

Floral headdresses or floral crowns are becoming more and more popular with brides. A gorgeous and natural accessor, they can suit the most bohemian bride looking for a statement piece, to the more traditional bride looking to wear just a simple floral headpiece.Here I focused on using various types of foliage to create the circular head band, which sits neatly onto the head. The foliage consisted of olive, which has a beautiful Mediterranean feel with soft green tones, natural mixed grasses to offer lots of texture and sprigs of pale grey eucalyptus foliage. By wiring the various pieces together into a circle that fits the head, I then taped on the two huge ivory peonies, a real statement flower offering great impact.

DIY Floral Crown

Peony and Olive Floral Crown

Peony and Olive Floral Crown on Blonde Bride

Blonde Bohemian Bride with Floral CrownAll images via Belle & Beau Photography

Floral Headpiece

In the shoot we created a very simple wired floral hair accessory, perfect to slip into a fabulous up-do. By using various sprigs of foliage cut to length such as olive and honeysuckle to form the backing of the hair decoration, I then taped a wired large blousy peony and a sprig of soft ivory astilbe to the foliage. This was then snuck neatly into the beautiful hair do, standing out perfectly against the brunette locks.

Peony Hair Flower Tutorial fig shoot TBP-25 DIY Hair Flower Tutorial fig shoot TBP-27 DIY Peony Hair Flowers Peony Hair Flower Bridal Hair FlowersAll images via Taylor Barnes Photography

Thanks so much to Rachel for sharing the insider info! Olive is having a real moment in the wedding industry, and I will always (I swear it) love honeysuckle, astilbe and peonies. Honeysuckle always reminds me of my own wedding day, such a beautiful scent.

Is anyone having a go at making floral headpieces themselves? Or are you leaving a job this important to a florist?

Let me know!

Jessie

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ROMANTIC & RUSTIC LUXE WEDDING INSPIRATION {Alex Miller Photography}

So I recently shared Taylor Barnes Photography and Belle & Beau Photography‘s images from our styled shoot earlier this year as featured on the Style Me Pretty wedding blog, and I also promised one more amazing photographer feature from the day too (as well as a series of DIY tutorials which I can’t wait to show you!).

So I’m delighted to introduce Alex Miller Photography and his beautiful work. This gent really will go to the next level to get the right shot, I spied him climbing up trees, hanging off branches and creeping up on deer in just one day of styling!

As usual, jump to the end for all supplier credits. You want amazing florals and pretty stationery at your wedding too right?

Coombe Lodge, Somerset Wedding Venue

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grey and white floral stationery

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twine wrapped church candle

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twine and purple wool wrapped cutlery

pretty french rustic and floral wedding table

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deer at wedding venue Coombe Lodge

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{Photography: Alex Miller Photography | Flowers: The Rose Shed | Make-Up: Nina Norman MUA | Hair: Melanie Giles Hairdressing | Venue: Coombe Lodge | Gowns: The Mews, Clifton | Jewellery : Bees and Graves | Mensware: Clifton Suits | Stylist: Jessie | Tableware: Stylists Own | Vintage Furniture Hire: Virginia’s Vintage Hire}

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the three different styles, which photographer most appeals to your personal design aesthetic? Do you see a difference between male/female photographer’s work?

I love the evening light in the final shots, and always tell my brides to make sure they get some portraits at sunset if possible (even if it means sneaking out during pudding!).

Jessie

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WATERFALL BRAID TUTORIAL {Professional Tips on How to Create Boho Bridal Hair}

Not so long ago I shared a fabulous DIY classic bridal make up tutorial with you from professional make up artist Sophie Chamings. On that lovely day of pampering I also had my hair styled by the very talented Chris from Fordham Hair Design, who created a gorgeous waterfall plait in my hair with loose waves.

I have to say, my hair was still looking pretty fabulous when I woke up the next morning… so pay attention to his top tips for getting a relaxed look that actually lasts!

Thanks again to Marcus from Bigeye Photography for snapping away and giving us these great images.

Make Up and Hair Tutorial by Bigeye Photography (99 of 119) loose curls hair tutorial

Chris Fordham: Most brides love the idea of having a special ‘hair do’ for their big day, but the biggest request I receive when conducting bridal hair trials is to not make them look too bouffant or give them an ‘Essex facelift’. With this in mind and wanting to create a hair-style that worked with many wedding themes we decided to style Jessie’s hair into a ‘boho chic’ waterfall braid with tousled beach curls.

This look would work well with a country barn celebration and equally with a high end 5 star venue wedding, the juxtaposition of the casual feel of a water fall braid and a beautifully fitted wedding gown works beautifully.

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The key to any bridal hair style is preparation, the average wedding day lasts around  12 hours, add  to this a lot of mingling, a splash of photo booth action and a few dance floor moves and you soon realise that your hair style needs to stand up to a lot!

I prepped Jessie’s hair with Schwarzkopf Silhouette setting lotion spray (£6.75). The term ‘Setting Lotion’ sounds terribly old fashioned but in this case Granny certainly knew best when it came to making a hair style last and this modern version works just as well but leaves the hair soft to the touch. Once I’d quickly dried this into the hair I added a few drops of Argan Secret’s ‘Oil of Marakesh’ (£17.99) this oil is the hair product equivalent of the multivitamin drink! A great product that protects the hair against heated appliances while adding incredible shine, reducing frizz and softening the hair.

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Make Up and Hair Tutorial by Bigeye Photography (32 of 119)

To create the beach curls I turned to my faithful GHD straighteners, these really are the ‘King of straighteners’, it may seem a contradiction to use ‘straighteners’ to curl hair but they give a great finish.  I do however find that people very often struggle to perfect the technique and they end up with weird kinks and not enough curl.

The secret is to take a SMALL postage stamp sized section of hair and to clamp the hair at the scalp with the GHD’s, while clamping the hair rotate the GHD’s a full rotation so the hair wraps around them, then SLOWLY pull the GHD’s along the section of hair almost like you would curl ribbon with scissors at Christmas time!

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Once curled all over I quickly spritzed the curls with L’Oreal ‘Fix Design’, this professional hairspray is a favourite with celebrity stylists at London Fashion Week for its ability to hold a style in adverse conditions.

The next stage was to weave the ‘Waterfall Braid’, starting at the temple the hair is divided into 3 sections and plaited in a conventional ‘French Braid’ for approximately ½ an inch.

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Then we start to drop out the lowest section as we weave and take another piece from behind the ‘dropped’ piece, so the hair is always being braided with 3 sections but always ‘dropping’ the lowest section to make the cascade effect, it may sound complicated but it really isn’t and a few practice sessions will soon have you mastering this on trend look!

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Make Up and Hair Tutorial by Bigeye Photography (89 of 119)

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Waterfall Braid Hair Tutorial By Chris Fordham at Fordham Hair Design:

M: 07735 055 146 | http://www.fhdmobile.co.uk | http://www.facebook.com/fordhamhairdesign | http://www.twitter.com/fordhamhair  | http://www.fordhamhairdesign.blogspot.co.uk

Makeup by Sophie Chamings

All images by Marcus Ward at Bigeye Photography

 

So Chris makes that sound very easy indeed, but I have a feeling that it probably takes way more practice to get it looking just right. So, if you give this a go do leave a comment on whether you managed to do it perfectly first time round!

Jessie

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BRIDAL FASHION SHOOT AT BARNSLEY HOUSE – PART TWO

Did you see Part 1 of the gorgeous gowns featured in Cotswold Life and shot by White Room Images at Barnsley House and Spa? No? Well hop on over there now, because that first Sassi Holford dress is a stunner!

The lovely team from Dragonfly Contemporary Designs came together with top local Gloucestershire suppliers to showcase some of their beautiful wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses in a typical English country garden setting, with ethereal veils and pretty accessories to match.

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This gorgeous dress is “Lantana” from Alan Hannah’s MiaMia range, and the veil is by The Couture Veil, both available at Dragonfly Contemporary Designs.

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Again, I love how the look can be totally transformed by adding or taking away a simple veil. The bouquet is by Bloomers of Cheltenham and perfectly complimented the setting at beautiful Cotswold wedding venue Barnsley House.

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Dragonfly Contemporary Designs have also recently launched their own bridesmaid dresses in a variety of colour-ways and lengths – seen here in a blush pink shorter style and a navy maxi style.

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I love this next Sassi Holford dress called “Olivia” so much because of it’s versatility. The lace detail at the top with a more simple skirt is just the right amount of pretty. The glittery headpiece is by Polly Edwards, again all available at Dragonfly Contemporary Designs. The freshwater pearls are from Cheltenham based RJ Spicer.

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Thanks to the beautiful girls Nikki and Olivia for wearing these dresses so beautifully. I think they were in dressing up heaven!

Jessie

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Photography: White Room Images | http://www.whiteroomimages.co.uk

Bridal Gowns: Dragonfly Contemporary Designs | http://www.dragonflycontemporarydesigns.co.uk

Flowers: Bloomers of Cheltenham | http://www.bloomersofcheltenham.com

Hair: Gorgeous Hair | http://www.gorgeous-hairdressing.co.uk

Make-up: Alice Tenton | http://www.alicetinton.co.uk

Wedding Planner: Jessie Thomson | http://www.jessiethomson.co.uk

Models: Nikki Cooke and Olivia Pym

Wedding Venue: Barnsley House and Spa | http://www.barnsleyhouse.com

BRIDAL FASHOON SHOOT AT BARNSLEY HOUSE – PART ONE

A few months ago the lovely David from White Room Images in Cheltenham contacted me about helping him to plan and come up with a design concept for a bridal fashion shoot for the wedding edition Cotswold Life magazine. When he told me that the team at Dragonfly Contemporary Designs were already on board, I couldn’t resist really could I?!

We decided pretty early on that we wanted to go for something very Kate Moss inspired, a classical country bride but with a rock n’ roll edge. The perfect wedding venue was of course one of my favourites in The Cotswolds, Barnsley House and Spa.

I’m excited to share the first set of photo’s with you from this beautiful bridal fashion showcase as seen in the latest edition of Cotswold Life Pure Weddings magazine. There will be more to come… so many gorgeous shots that I needed to split it into more than one feature for you.

letterpress wedding stationery cotswolds

The stunning stationery was supplied by super duper talented David from Cherry Press. He is so passionate about his art, and it shows beautifully in his creative work. We used neutral and classic colours in this shoot, so David used gorgeous grey’s on the “Namosa” range from his collection.

The bridal gown featured in the next images below are of “Bluebell” by Sassi Holford from Dragonfly Contemporary Designs. I love how it’s a big dress that’s quite formal and statement making, yet paired with a floral crown normally reserved for boho girls it’s kept fresh and contemporary with those long wavy tresses.

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A touch of grunge with those charcoal black nails (totally works doesn’t it?!). I adore the floral crown by local florist Bloomers of Cheltenham using baby’s breath and daisies. So sweet and simple. Those stunning pearls can be purchased at Cheltenham jewellers RJ Spicer.

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The long and loose wavy bridal hair was created by the team from Gorgeous Hair. If you want a big statement or more formal dress but also lust for a more low key affair, a compromise with this loose “down do” might work for you.

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The bouquets were also by Bloomers of Cheltenham, that “just picked from a meadow” look will always appeal to me.

white unstructured bouquet country wedding floral crown with big wedding dress

This next dress is called “Mia” by Sassi Holford and is also from Dragonfly Contemporary Designs. I love how the simple addition of the pink belt and veil totally changes the whole look. An easy way to change the dress from ceremony to reception.

vintage lace wedding dress barnsley house gardens wedding

The headpiece is by Polly Edwards and also available at Dragonfly Contemporary Designs. Makeup for both models was by Alice Tinton – a soft natural look for brides that won’t age.

bride barnsley house classic bride cotswolds

I still love lace dresses going into 2014 – the style of this dress is so flattering, and though not as big as the first one, it still makes an impact whilst remaining nice and covered on the shoulder… so perfect for a church wedding.

veil with loose curls simple lace wedding dress

Aren’t the grounds of Barnsley House stunning? Wait until you see the next part of this series, which will also feature pretty bridesmaid dresses and some incredible sunset shots. Meeeep!

Jessie

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Photography: White Room Images | http://www.whiteroomimages.co.uk

Bridal Gowns: Dragonfly Contemporary Designs | http://www.dragonflycontemporarydesigns.co.uk

Flowers: Bloomers of Cheltenham | http://www.bloomersofcheltenham.com

Hair: Gorgeous Hair | http://www.gorgeous-hairdressing.co.uk

Make-up: Alice Tenton | http://www.alicetinton.co.uk

Wedding Planner: Jessie Thomson | http://www.jessiethomson.co.uk

Models: Nikki Cooke and Olivia Pym

Wedding Venue: Barnsley House and Spa | http://www.barnsleyhouse.com

 

Wedding Chat With Crown and Glory Hair Accessories

Ok so by now you must know about the sparkly bridal heaven for unique and alternative brides that is Crown and Glory right? No?! Where have you been??

Sophie’s creations have been featured on pretty much all the best blogs, endorsed by fashion mags and supported by major high street chains. It’s safe to say she’s a girl who knows a bit about making the perfect hair accessory. Personally I want one of her glitter hair bows in every colour. And one of her “whole lotta rosie” headbands too please. Actually just give me one of everything!

Just in case you haven’t heard all about Sophie and her pretty business, I recently interviewed her especially for the blog. And guess what? She also threw in a special offer of 15% off any online order of the ready to wear collection, just for my readers, all you need to do is  enter the discount code JESSIELOVES15 when you get to the checkout on her website!

butterfly bridal hair accessory

Image via Crown and Glory Lookbook Spring/Summer 2013

 

Tell me a little bit about yourself

Sophie, 25, from Cornwall UK. Think of me as your slightly eccentric best friend who likes cats, cooking and marathon shopping.

Tell me about Crown and Glory

Crown and Glory is an independent accessories label that was born from my delight of wearing things in my hair. From festival worthy florals to hi fashion turbans, our collections are trend led and fun, produced in low product runs right here in the UK. We pride ourselves in ensuring each piece is of the highest quality yet still totally affordable. We also take custom orders on a small basis.

How long have you been in business?

Officially trading 2 years in June, Crown and Glory started as a hobby and just kept growing. We’ve just taken on our first employee and hope to have more by the end of year 2!

crown and glory bridal

Image via Blue Daisy Photography

 

How did you get involved in the industry?

I fell into it a bit really – while I’ve always been in arts based education, Crown and Glory began as a hobby during university – my final year of my degree was slow and I wanted an escape, to be able to produce something just because I liked it – like I said, I’d always worn things in my hair and at the time, hair accessories were an ill thought, vague addition to high street jewellery lines or ridiculously overpriced.

If you weren’t involved in your own business, what else would you like to do?

That’s so hard! Through Crown and Glory I have found a love of fashion communications – from running the social media campaigns to that buzz when a piece of coverage is secured, so I guess you’d probably find me causing chaos at a fashion PR house.

What or who inspires you?

Cliched and contrived it may be, but my inspirations are from a vast array of sources – street style, high fashion, couture – people, stylists and designers who aren’t afraid to be a little different and have a lot of fun.

bride red hair

Image via Emma Case Photography

 

What do you love most about your job?

Each day is so varied – I can be bogged down in sample selection one minute and jaunting off to a meeting at Soho House the next. Receiving unexpected letters and emails of gratitude and thanks from customers warms my heart – I keep them in a little folder on my computer as a pick me up if things are getting me down.

What makes your service unique?

Attention to detail – our orders are wrapped like presents, we include luxe packaging as standard and go the extra mile with regards to customer service.

What’s your best memory from your job so far?

Sitting front row at London Fashion Week, September 2012, seeing my pieces on the models at Danillo Gabrielli for House of Evolution. The most surreal? A week earlier I was making headbands to order in the window of Oasis’ flagship Oxford Street store for their party for Vogue Fashion’s Night Out. I told you, varied!

 

floral crown pink hair bride

Image via Lisa Devlin at Devlin Photos

What’s the most unusual request you’ve ever had?

I’m currently working on customising a piece for a bride – a family heirloom, her mother’s wedding crown, made current with silky spring hued florals. I was so nervous to begin attaching to it but it’s been such fun to see it coming together!

What’s your working week like?

I’m typically at my desk by 9am, having checked through the nights’ emails over breakfast in bed. Processing orders and customer service take priority, with a check through the press to see if we’ve gained any coverage on a Tuesday. Being based in Cornwall, a lot of my meetings with boutiques and wholesale clients are conducted over Skype in the afternoons. A quick trip to the local sorting office around 430 each day to deposit our post is a welcome 10 minute walk, especially in the spring sunshine. I get back and crack on with scheduling social media and blog posts for the next day and overview the order schedule. At the end of each working day (usually around 6-7pm) I head to the gym to wind down – spin class, Bodycombat, Bodymax and Pilates. I relax after I return with a nice dinner and a read through my favourites blogs and magazines.

What made you want to work in the wedding industry?

Again, I sort of fell into it! This is my first year of ‘working the circuit’ after last year I received custom orders from brides and amazing coverage from the likes of Rock n Roll Bride and Perfect Wedding mag. I love hearing about brides details and seeing them look so happy and smiley in their wedding photos.

 

crown and glory red glitter bow

Image via Lisa Devlin at Devlin Photos

 

Have you seen many changes since you started your business?

This year, it’s all about the ‘alternative’ wedding. Naysayers claim that it’s a term that is going to implode but I don’t see what can be so wrong with couples feeling that its ok for them to out their stamp on their day.

What’s the biggest misconception about your industry/service?

That everyone is out to make an extra buck as soon as the word ‘wedding’ is mentioned. I price all wedding orders as I would a custom order for a festival or race day, and actually am often able to offer discounts if I’m creating multiples of the same piece, for example.

Have you worked with any other vendors or suppliers that you’d recommend to couples getting married? And why?

We love all the folks that showcased at All About EWE (aka the Eclectic Wedding Extravaganza) – Veronica Dearly, Emma Case, Polkadot Fox, Elbie van Eeden, Jenny Revive, so many more!

Where can we find you?

Web: http://www.crownandglory.co.uk
Email: sales@crownandglory.co.uk
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/crownandglory_
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/crownandgloryaccessories
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/crownandglory_
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/crownandglory

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