And so to Wed Issue 4 - Autumn 2015

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And so to Wed ISSUE 4 AUTUMN 2015

IN THIS ISSUE On the cover

Becky Ryan Photography – Rockabilly Bride Photo Shoot


4 Rockabilly Bride Styled Photo Shoot 14 5 Ways to Remember Your Loved Ones 19 Meet our Blogging Brides 34 Boho Glam Styled Photo Shoot 42 The Realisation You Might Be A Bridezilla 43 Your Dream Dress – Elizabeth Malcolm 47 Pastel Romance Styled Photo Shoot 58 Nail Your Wedding Timings 60 Manhattan Collection - PaperKnots 64 Money, Money, Money 66 Flossy and Dossy 2015 Collection 72 Summer Blooms 80 Meet our Partners 83 Get Glamorous Styled Photo Shoot

Your weddings

25 The Wedding of Craig and Emily 73 The Wedding of Isobel and Blair 90 The Wedding of Andy and Michelle

The important bits 102 Our Contributors 104 Directory

A word from the editor Hello, hello! Well, it has been a year since ASTW first came into existence with a group of small businesses coming together to create something truly different. Our premise was to provide wedding couples with a beautifully bespoke day, whilst supporting Britain’s small businesses. Since then we have grown both our Team and our following, but we feel that we have still managed to stay true to our roots, sharing the fabulous work of our vendors, all of whom fit the ASTW criteria. We have had lots of exciting developments over the last few months, from expanding our Team to include four new Partners, who you'll meet in this issue, to welcoming four new Blogging Brides who will be sharing their journeys. The ASTW Team have shared with you a variety of inspiring photo shoots, from 1970's glamour to dusty pastels. Whatever your taste, there's something for you in our Autumn issue. It just remains for me to say a huge thank you to all of our vendors, brides and grooms who support, share and enjoy what we do – without you we wouldn't be what we are today.

The Editor x

Becky Ryan Photography

With special thanks to: Bouquets, vintage jewellery and accessories: Bespoke Vintage Castle Photography: Becky Ryan Photography Dresses: Frock Nottingham Hair stylist: Pin Up Curl Make up: Rochelle O'Brien Product styling and floristry: Extra Special Touch Cake, styling and floristry: The Organic Cake Company Wedding stationery: With love wedding stationery Models: Jazzmine Augustin, Gaea Nayo, Franchesca Holmes, Emma Marshal

1. Include their photo in your photos

You may wish to have a photo of your loved one whilst your are getting ready, at the ceremony or at the reception. Capturing a picture of you with their photo is a lovely lasting way of including them in your big day.

2. Remember them in your music

You can include their favourite song or piece of music in many ways. Perhaps as you walk down the aisle, at the reception or even as your first dance.

Photography by Claire Basiuk

3. Pin photos to your bouquet

Many brides do this nowadays as a way of ensuring their loved ones are close by. It also provides a lasting memory when captured in a photograph.

4. Keep them close to your heart

Having a piece of silk embroidered and sewn into your dress is a wonderful way of keeping your loved ones close to your heart throughout the day.

Featuring Extra Special Touch

5. Use their favourite flower

You may wish to create your bouquet and whole floral design around a departed loved ones favourite bloom, or maybe just use one stem to represent them. Either way this is a lovely way of including them and you can press and frame your flowers after the big day to create a lasting reminder. Featuring Foxy Buds

Hello to all my fellow brides to be… My name is Dobrila and I live in a small village called Robin Hood near Leeds, with my fiancé Rob and our Bengal cat Boo. Rob proposed to me on the 13th March 2014 outside Buckingham palace, it was a very romantic and special day that I will never forget. Being engaged I had so many mixed feelings and emotions, of course I was extremely happy and excited, all the people in your lives are also extremely happy and excited for you and everyone wants to celebrate with you both…I can’t even remember the amount of bubbles we drank during this time, not that I’m complaining! Naturally however, your brain goes into over drive and I started to get a little overwhelmed with everything that I had to think about to plan our wedding. Needless to say I have had days and weeks where I have been very stressed making sure I have accounted for everything, meeting deadlines and trying to think about the theme/style of the wedding we would like to have. Since then I have been doing a huge amount of research and planning for our perfect day…I am very much a perfectionist and I love organising, so I have been creating mood boards, endless Pinterest folders, spreadsheets, reading every bridal magazine driving

magazine you can find and visiting numerous venues hosting wedding fairs to get my inspiration. I also arranged a day out with some girls to The National Wedding Show in Manchester, which was a brilliant experience and one I would absolutely recommend, so many things to enjoy and explore. There are lots of vendors offering deals on photography, hair and makeup, invites, cakes and most importantly wedding dresses. It’s a great day out with your friends/family and it definitely gets you feeling like a bride. I do believe research, planning and organising are key to the success of creating the perfect day for you and your partner, it's satisfying to shop around, getting ideas from various sources and feeling 100% confident in the decisions you are making. I was born in Croatia and lived in my hometown Porec until I was 10 years old, which is when we moved to the UK. From a young age, as most little girls do, I dreamt of the one day I could be a princess, and thinking of my wedding day, I couldn’t imagine getting married anywhere else but in the church in my hometown in Croatia with all of our dearest family and friends. There was a lot to do once Rob and I decided this was definitely where we wanted to get married and I have had to be extremely organised planning our wedding abroad. The first thing I did was ask my four closest friends and two younger sisters to be my bridesmaids, I just couldn’t imagine my day without them by my side as I walk down the aisle. I decided the best way forward was to speak to a wedding planner in Croatia who could help me with booking the church, reception venue, photographer, florist, band etc… this has been a big help even though I have done a lot of the work myself, it has been good to know I have someone who I can double and triple check things with and know that there will be someone helping me coordinate everything for our big day. We have actually booked our wedding day now for the 21st May 2016…there is still a lot to do and it has been a long road to get this far, but I am super excited! We have also decided to have a UK reception after our honeymoon to celebrate with all of the people that may not be able to attend our wedding in Croatia. Now that I have my plan of action in place, I’m very excited to start ticking everything off the list leading up to the big day…and I’m very much looking forward to sharing all my experiences and tips with you all.

Dobrila x

hosting my own. I also enjoy making things and illustrating. My family are a creative family; my side are into sewing, art and handmade things and Adam is in a band so he’s into all the music side of things. These are definitely two elements we’re going to bring to our wedding. We’re at the very beginning of our ‘wedding journey’ having only become engaged last month (at a festival). I’m knee-deep in internet blogs, Pinterest boards and magazine clippings, but obviously still very scarce on actual booked and finalised things. There’s a lot of ideas going on, so I’m excited to start getting things down into actual plans and seeing the day come together. We want our wedding to be personal to us, as a three – Me, Charlie and Adam – Not just the two of us as a couple. I like to support independent creative people too, so we’ll be trying to incorporate different aspects that might not be the traditional way to go. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, whereas Adam is really laid back, so I’m hoping things will all go to plan, gulp! We’re aiming to get married in June 2016.

Hollie x Discover Hollie's first blog article –

The realisation you MIGHT be a bridezilla... at Hi, I'm Hollie and I live in Pontefract, West Yorkshire. I’m 27, and my partner is Adam, 28. We’ve been really close friends since college (yeah, I know.. yuk!) where we met in an 80s nightclub, dancing like we’d never danced before. He must have wooed me with his excellent robot or I must have wooed him with my outstanding Van Halen-style jump, you know how it goes. We’ve been those kind of people that are always together since then and eventually became an official ‘thing’ without really realising it. We have a gorgeous, recently-turned 6 year old little boy named Charlie, who is an absolute Daddy replica, copying anything Adam does. He’s the best. I run a fanzine called The Low Road which includes articles, poetry and illustration in my local area and I also write for a football website called Owls Alive. I work in a record store and in my spare time I volunteer locally for the Lioness Club. I enjoy going to watch live music and other indie, off-the-beaten track events, as well as

My name is Kadi and I work as a full time teacher. I teach Sociology, RE and Ethics in a secondary school in West Sussex. I love teaching but I have lots of other hobbies that I enjoy in my spare time. I really enjoy cooking and experimenting with food, although not everything turns out particularly well! I am also a keen photographer. I hate the thought of all the small precious moments in life being forgotten and photos are a great way of remembering these. I spend hours compiling photos and thoughts into scrap books to look back on in the future. Another keen interest of mine is health and nutrition. In my spare time I work for a worldwide health and nutritional company, educating people how to live a healthier and more active lifestyle. This is something I would like to do full time in the future. The very first time I saw my now fiancé was when I was 17. Our parents had caravans opposite each other in Newquay. It wasn’t until we were 27 that we started chatting and spending time together. Only 6 months after our first conversation on Facebook, I had a new

teaching job and I had moved 3 hours south to live with my fiancé. It was the scariest but the best decision I have ever made. My partner proposed in May this year in our favourite restaurant. We are planning to get married in August 2016 and I can’t wait! Getting married when I’m 30 means I have seen a lot of weddings and talked to a lot of brides. I knew from listening to other brides that I wanted our wedding to be stress free and simple, yet unforgettable. My family and friends live all over the country so planning this wedding was always going to be a little tricky. However, I love a challenge and I can’t wait to share all of my ideas with you about how to save money, DIY your wedding and reduce stress.

Kadi x

I am Gemma, a twenty eight year old teacher born and bred in Suffolk. I have been teaching for six years and love my job, working with children and young people. Outside of my classroom, I also volunteer in a cadet force with young people aged ten to eighteen. This is a slightly surreal experience, I was encouraged by a friend of mine to apply to ASTW and share my thoughts on getting ready to be married and planning the wedding. I studied at my local university and stayed at home, I’ve rarely left the UK (not that I’m complaining) … but had I left home I probably wouldn’t have met my husband-tobe. Living at home has meant I’ve spent a lot of my youth on the Suffolk and Norfolk coastline. One of my favourite places to be is Great Yarmouth, especially the Hippodrome as I’m into circus arts and love watching the music, lights and costumes that combine to make the magical show that allows the audience to escape for a little while from the hustle and bustle. But before we get too excited, I’m not going for a circus themed wedding as much as I would have loved it! I have a small family, my parents who have been happily married for the last thirty-eight years as well as my brother and his wife who have been married for almost a year. My parents are a living testimony of how a partnership should work – they’ve faced some epic partner

battles but they have had some great triumphs in there too. If anything, watching my parents has made me highlight the importance of making memories, happy or sad, big or small … memories are what build up your history, the story through life that you can record. This leads me onto one of my biggest loves – photography. I am usually behind the nearest camera lens, not in front of it, a battle I will have to face before my wedding day I’m sure but it’s emphasized the importance of having “perfect” photos to preserve those memories and share them with those that you love. My husband-to-be is an amazingly understanding man and so far, we’ve had very few arguments about what we want from our special day. Hopefully it continues but I guess you guys will find out! We are aiming for a nautically themed wedding. We are both part of the Sea Cadets and it seemed like a natural thing for us to use as our inspiration. The only thing he’s requested so far was to use the colour blue as homage to his beloved Ipswich Town (Someone has to support them!) – I like vintage fashion and styles and hopefully will be crafty enough to maybe make my own bunting. We aren’t that formal a couple and we will definitely be having a child-friendly day. I’m hoping that my blog posts will help, encourage and re-assure that maybe I have felt the same things that you are feeling or have felt too. I look forward to seeing how this journey goes and what directions we’ll go on the way. Bring on August 2016 and becoming Mrs M!

Gemma x

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Photography by Chantal Lachance Gibson

On 2nd May 2015 Craig and Emily got married at Airth Castle, here they share their stunning wedding day with you. 'Our inspiration was a mixture of Japanese and Scottish Cultures. The Japanese being partly from my family (mum's side) and Scottish from my dad's side and from Craig's side.' 'My bridesmaids and I stayed the night before in Airth Castle so we could have a relaxing night before the big day. All the suppliers arrived in the morning and we all got ready in our suite with some lovely champagne and strawberries. The boys all got ready at Craig's mum and dad's house then finished getting ready at the hotel before helping with some of the decor at the venue.' 'The ceremony started with me, the bridal girlies and my dad being piped down the driveway to the castle.' 'We thought it would be nice to have a humanist ceremony to incorporate our own touches to the wedding. It was a very relaxing ceremony and everyone seemed to enjoy it. Mary Wallace did a fab job with the ceremony and for also keeping all the guests and the groom occupied while they waited for me, I was 40 minutes late for the ceremony - whoops!' 'The main theme was the 1000 origami cranes (which is called "Senbazuru" in Japanese, which is symbolism for Japanese

auspiciousness...some info on good old Wikipedia. Craig and I, with help from friends and family, folded 1000 origami cranes. These were used in the centrepieces, flowers, buttonholes, corsages, name places, on the table plan, as cake toppers and as decoration hanging from balloons, from the mantelpiece in the ceremony room and also as a backdrop for the photobooth.' 'We also folded Origami hearts for our invitations which you can see on my mum's blog. I absolutely loved our flowers - the florist did an amazing job. We had both purpley/pinky orchids and thistles within the bouquets, top table flowers, buttonholes and corsages. We had a piper and kilts to represent the Scottish touches too.'

'The ceremony included hand fastening...where traditionally you hand fasten tartan...however we decided to use one ribbon of tartan and one ribbon of Japanese silk again symbolising backgrounds.'



'We also had both our mum's present each of the fabrics to the humanist before they were fastened. My step dad and Craig's dad read out poems and my dad read his father of the bride speech. It was a nice touch having all the father figures in our life speaking on our big day!' 'Hugh the toastmaster, the piper and Craig addressed the haggis together at the start of our wedding breakfast. As part of the groom's speech, Craig spoke some Japanese which was a lovely surprise for our guests.' 'We had whisky for the gent's favours and lovely handmade bath bombs for the women's favours. The reception also had a short ceilidh section which was a lot of fun and got everyone up dancing!' 'Our first dance was You are the Best Thing by Ray Lamontagne which was sang brilliantly by Cut The Cake wedding band.' 'Our advice for other wedding couples would be don't stress about all the fine details - it will be what it will be at the end of the day. Lists, lists, lists! Put each item in order of importance and tick them off one at a time (don't try to tick off too many at once - you'll just stress yourself out)! Finally, relax and enjoy all the planning!'

With special thanks to Photography by Chantal Lachance Gibson Dress and bridesmaid dresses - Isabella Jack Bridal Shoes - Miss KG (Kurt Geiger) Hair - Reflection Hair Salon Make-Up - Eye Adore U - Make Up Artist (Claire Dryden) Kilts - MacGregor and MacDuff Humanist - Mary Wallace Flowers - Memory Lane Flowers Cake - A-Cakes Venue - Airth Castle Rings - John Macintyre & Son Invitations, Table Plan, Place Names and centrepieces - The Sweeneys! Ladies Favours - Betty Bubbles Chair Covers - Happy Talk Events Dance Floor - The Blue Parrot Company Photo booth - Blushbooth Band - Cut the Cake Piper -

Photographer - Erik Meijer

The Team: Photographer - Erik Meijer Accessories - Bespoke Vintage Castle Wedding Dresses - Ritva Westenieus Wedding Cakes - Elizabeths Cake Emporium Makeup - Cristina Lazarotto Hair Stylist - Kaisa Fortuna Flowers - Wild about Flowers Venue - No 4. Hamilton Place Models - Sophie Temple, Jack Mailing

The realisation you MIGHT be a bridezilla… .

(And the “nobody is listening to me!” tantrum)

you get down to the bare bones of it all, if Adam and I walk out of the building as a married couple, it’ll be a success. Stuff is meant to go wrong - Some stuff, little stuff that no one really cares about always goes wrong – Someone forgot to bring the cake knife, your gran accidentally wore her hat the wrong way on all the photos – does it really matter? Nahh. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Know in advance that some silly things might happen, but that they don’t really matter - they don’t make your day what it is. Forget it. And when it happens? Hitch your dress up, and show the world how to party. Be honest with yourselves and what you really, really find important – This was a major thing for me. A week ago, when ‘The Tantrum’ occurred, Adam asked me what was wrong, and after reeling off reason after reason, he just burst out laughing. I thought about all I’d just said and realised I’d been a bit daft, and things that seemed huge were just stupid things. We decided to write the three main things we thought were important to us and our wedding, and everything else, whilst they’d be nice if they all fell into place, it didn’t really matter if they didn’t. If yours is flowers, then get the best flowers you can find, the most glorious flowers you’ve ever seen, and then no one will even notice the other ‘lesser’ important stuff. If you want to have a really gorgeous cake, brilliant. If you want to indulge your guests in something you really love, if you love, say, board games, get some board games out! If you don’t really care about any of that sort of stuff but you fancy having a gigantic feast and a boogie – yep, you guessed it. Go find what you want and where to get it, and get it booked. Don’t let anyone dictate what you should put most importance on. Don’t let them pressure you into what so-and-so had at their wedding. Your wedding isn’t your friend’s wedding, it isn’t Pinterest’s wedding, it isn’t your nannas wedding, it’s you and your partners, and everyone else will come and they will enjoy (even if they say they won’t in the lead up to it, obviously!) And it’s alright to be stressed out about it too, we’re all like it, it’s hard - Check out stuff online, watch the TV shows, indulge in it all, but enjoy it, and when you don’t - Close the laptop, today is not the day. There’s always tomorrow. So I’m back to the drawing board with my wedding, with my three important things tucked up my sleeve and with a new, more positive outlook. Don’t sweat the small stuff, Bridezilla

We’ve all laid on the settee and indulged in those wedding TV shows, tittering from behind our packets of crisps on a Tuesday night thinking, “Ha, what an idiot, I’d never be like that” and “I can’t believe he’s with someone who reacts like THAT over something so silly”. Yep. Me too. It never occurred to me that I might just turn into one of these monsters myself. My partner, Adam, and I have only just started on the long and lovely road of wedding planning, skipping effortlessly through the excitement of engagement and diving head first into this gigantic task of planning an actual wedding. And then suddenly everyone became a complete idiot. Everyone. Shop vendors, my friends, my partner, the internet. Idiots. The shops didn’t have what I was after, the venues I wanted didn’t even EXIST, even Pinterest was giving me “no results” when I turned to it for help. No results! No one knew what I wanted, why couldn’t they just ASSUME what I wanted and get it right? Why do I need to TELL them what I want and who I want where and how? Yeah, I know! Is that too much to ask? Then I realised, I’d changed. Turns out this wedding planning stuff is pretty stressful. You think about it and it seems lovely – you and your partner will sit happily scouring the internet for what you want and it’ll all fall into place in the days before your date. Easy. Except actually, it’s really, really hard. No matter what people tell you, or what you’ve told your tearful bride-to-be-friends in the past, when it’s your own wedding it’s really hard. So what’s next? I’ve had a tantrum (and even a few tears about it all) what now? The second realisation – It’ll all be okay. Essentially, what you want at the end of the wedding is for you and your partner to be married. Now if you don’t want me to jinx it, then look away now – Barring something really, REALLY unpredictable – You WILL be married at the end of the day. You’ll be Written by our Blogging Bride theirs and they’ll be yours. I’m a huge perfectionist, and a bit of a control freak, and I love things to be perfect, amazing and done exactly as I want, but when about

Hollie x

Elizabeth Malcolm of Belper, Derbyshire offers each and every bride an unforgettable experience when choosing your dream wedding dress. Either choose from their extensive range of hand crafted wedding dresses made from fine silks, satins, French Chantilly lace and Swarovski crystals, or have the ultimate in luxury couture have your dream wedding dress designed and handmade to your exact specifications. All of Elizabeth Malcolm's bridal gowns are designed and handmade, exclusively by Elizabeth Malcolm, right in the heart of Derbyshire, and are only available direct.

Lizzie is renowned for her exquisite cut and style. Her flair for design covers both her collections and her full couture gowns. When you choose an Elizabeth Malcolm wedding gown you are choosing something truly special that will make you feel wonderful on your wedding day. For more information visit Elizabeth Malcolm at

Pastel Romance Styled photo shoot

Photography by Zoe Ann Photography

We decided to celebrate our First Birthday with a photo shoot inspired by our recent rebrand. Taking the colours and geometric style, we chose to couple this with a truly romantic and ethereal wedding dress from the fabulous Lace & Co and the White Room at The Leeds Club provided the perfect setting. We created a backdrop from pastel coloured ribbons and a geometric garland made by My Little Shop of Wonder. Styling was by Brachetto Weddings and the stationery by LoveLi. Cake and cupcakes by Rebecca Mallipal and Cakes by Robina. Hair and make up by Belle Mariee by Shaista. Our model was Elle. Photography captured by Zoe Ann Photography.

Stationery by LoveLi -

Cake by Rebecca Mallipal and Cakes by Robina

Venue – The Leeds Club, 3 Albion Pl, Leeds, West Yorkshire LS1 6JL -

Styling by Brachetto Weddings

Dress – Kobe by Rembo Styling in full length ivory supplied by Lace & Co -

Hair and make up by Belle Mariee by Shaista

Having shot around 200 weddings, there are a few things churches usually have more than one ceremony per day – sometimes even several. Yes, they will wait for about timings that I’ve noticed along the way…. you, but not past the time it risks impacting on their Think carefully about your ceremony time Consider what season you are getting married in, and how next couple! this will affect the amount of natural light. If you’re going for a 4.30pm ceremony in December, you simply won’t get any natural light shots of you – it gets dark around 4.00pm – which can be all too easily forgotten during the long summer days! Think about what is important to you as a couple. A later ceremony will mean a more relaxed, pampered morning and more time for detail shots and portraits of both the bride and groom and attendants. An earlier ceremony can mean more time in the afternoon for informal shots of your guests, group shots and portraits of you both together, perhaps in a number of different locations outside of the immediate venue.

Be generous with your timings

When to speak?

The timing of speeches can be a really tricky choice. Go traditional and have them after the meal and you have the benefit of a full, happy, tipsy audience. On the downside, it can be a long wait for a nervous speaker, and your beautifully laid tables will be covered in cafetieres, crumpled napkins, half-drunk wine, brightly coloured gifts and Tommee Tippee cups. You can bet THEY weren’t on your Pinterest board! Personally I would go for speeches before the meal, but in careful consultation with the venue and speakers, to ensure that people don’t overrun their timings and cause problems for the caterers.

Be organised yet flexible

There’s no doubt that it’s a good idea to have a detailed itinerary and to make sure key people (including all suppliers) have a copy of it. Equally, however, it’s important to delegate the watching of the clock to others to allow you to fully enjoy your day. Being flexible with timings, where possible, will enable your photographer to make the most of the light when it’s at it’s best. Grabbing even 5-10 minutes to get Don’t be TOO late! I often hear brides joke “well, they’re not going to start outside in perfect light can give you shots you will without me!”. This is true, of course, but it’s also treasure forever. worth remembering that, in peak seasons, registrars and Article written and images by Tiree Dawson of Tiree Dawson Photography - On your wedding day, pretty much everything will take longer than you imagine. Nervous fingers struggle to lace up dresses and buckle up shoes. Table plans need tweaking at the last minute. Even walking across a room can take half an hour, wading through the happy guests eager to congratulate you. Factor in plenty of slippage time to ensure everything stays relaxed.

Inspired by the Great Gatsby era, this decadent suite of wedding stationery captures lavish 1920′s detailing. Each item of stationery is ‘framed’ using an intricate symmetrical border, combined with bold exuberant shapes and rich colours. A monogram is created using deco style fonts and geometric shapes and is used across the range. The main wedding invitation uses a pocket fold format containing information inserts and the RSVP with its luxury shimmering gold return envelope and optional matching address sticker. The invitation comes complete with a white postage envelope. Matching address stickers and envelope liners are also available. Order matching on-the-day stationery in this collection too. Prices from £0.75 - £30.00 See for more details Photography by Charlie Kingsland-Barrow

Photography by Charlie Kingsland-Barrow

Photography by Charlie Kingsland-Barrow

Photography by Charlie Kingsland-Barrow

Money Money Money! Blogging Bride Kadi shares her experience of trying to budget for her wedding day

I’ve just come back from a wonderful holiday where we visited parts of where Mamma Mia was filmed, so the title for my first blog seems fitting! After having 12 days of bliss enjoying the sun, sand and sea, it gave me time to reflect on the finances and where I am with my wedding planning so far. I think when I first got engaged, I was on a bit of a bride-to-be holiday to be honest. My partner and I had bought a house not too long before we were engaged so had very little money. We knew our budget would be limited. This didn’t phase me as in my mind I wanted a small and personal family wedding. How much could that really cost? I got myself a few notepads and started thinking about how I could save pennies by doing bits myself. Here’s a sneak peak at part of my original budget (in my naïve bride-to-be state): Dress £200 – yes, this doesn’t seem like much but I knew of budget shops where they were selling incredible dresses. Bride accessories £100 – for all of the nicer touches like the veil and jewellery. Bridesmaids and ushers £200 – surely I can find some bits in the sale? Button holes £150 – a must have at a wedding right? Venue - £500 – a nice country pub with an open garden to use. Food £200 – A tasteful buffet, how much could that really cost?? Flowers £100 – Just a few tasteful touches for the day. If you haven’t started planning your wedding, you might not have much of a reaction to my budgeting. If you have started planning, you are either laughing or thinking ‘oh dear’. The problem is, even though I don’t want to spend unnecessarily, or want a massive wedding with 500 guests, the money spent is already starting to stack up. A lot of our friends who are already married said “Whatever your budget is, add another £5000 on top”. I’m starting to see what they mean. However, I refuse to allow my wedding to become

become something that puts us into debt. I don’t want to spend money we haven’t got. For both me and my fiancé, being in debt would just cause us to stress, and this is something we both want to avoid before and after the wedding. I don’t mean to scare you. Weddings can be any price tag, from a few hundred to thousands. However, I do think you need to realistic with your budgeting. Sit down together and have a good think about what means most to you on the day and where you can make some savings. I have read so many articles of brides who wish they had done it differently, and the biggest theme that seems to come up is wishing they hadn’t spent so much money.

When you start planning your wedding, just think about the following questions:

Have I checked that I have the best price? Do I definitely need this? ● Do I know anyone who could do it for free? ● Could I make it myself? ● When I look back on my wedding, will I remember it? ● Who am I doing this for? ● Will I regret it? I think there are areas of your wedding where you can make savings, but there are also other areas that you might find you spend more. Here are some examples of how my budget has changed: I desperately tried to find a dress within budget and tried on quite a few. I looked online and in shops. The problem is, you can’t really help what dress you fall in love with and mine just happens to be an unfortunate price tag of £1000. I didn’t buy it straight away and went back 3 times to try it on but every time I tried it on I loved it a little bit more. I found a veil for £90 and I know by shopping around I’ll need to allow another £100 for additional accessories for the day. This was way over budget, even with my mum contributing some money, but I realised how much the right dress meant to me. Original budget: £200 + £100 Actual price: £1000 + £200 However, with my bridesmaid dresses I have made some savings. My best friends live all over the UK and the thought of trying to get them all into one dress seemed crazy. To save money, time and stress I asked them whether they would mind buying their own. They all loved the idea! The great thing is, they will all feel comfortable in what they have chosen, it reduces the amount of jobs I have to do and it has saved me spending money on dresses they might hate. We have adopted the same strategy with the ushers. We are ● ●

going to ask them all to buy grey suits and a white shirt. We will then provide them all with the same tie just to create a bit of a uniformed look. Original budget: £200 Actual price: £40 Another saving has been with my button holes. I’ve read a lot of reviews about how real flowers can actually fall apart on the day and how much easier fake flowers can be. Honestly, have a look online, you’ll be surprised at how fab they can look. My favourite so far are the button holes sold by John Lewis for the men that are priced at £3.50 each. It also allows you to add a personalised touch, for example, a coloured ribbon to match the wedding colours.

I think if you spend money on your wedding to please others you’ll regret it. Where you do spend money, make sure it’s something that will make you and your partner happy and give you years of wonderful memories. Don’t get pulled into this wedding meat market of people charging ridiculous prices. Look on Ebay and ask around until you find not only your perfect item but at the perfect price. I’ll keep you updated on all the bargains hunts I’ve been on in my next blog.

Happy planning!

Kadi x

Photography by Struve Photography

If you're looking for a bespoke wedding dress that has a romantic vintage feel and is handmade by a British designer, discover the latest collection from Flossy and Dossy. The collection features subtle colours, delicate lace, silk and chiffon and with prices starting from ÂŁ750 you really can afford a designer dress! Each dress is complimented by a beautiful headpiece expertly designed by Natasha at Modiste. Discover more at


Photography by Struve Photography

Photography by Struve Photography

Photography by Struve Photography

Photography by Struve Photography

Photography by Struve Photography

Photography by Chantal Lachance Gibson

Isobel and Blair got married on 23rd August 2014 at Westwood Parish Church and then celebrated in style at the Strathaven Hotel. Here they share their special day. 'We wanted a classic, elegant but relaxed day and chose a subtle pearl and lace theme which we tried to incorporate into the invitations, table plan, table stationary, my dress and all the flowers. Blair wore his family tartan so it was important for us to match the colour to the decorations and bridesmaid dresses as much as possible. Luckily, blue always has been one of my favourite colours!' 'The day was incredible from beginning to end, though it all went so fast! The weather was cloudy and windy in the morning but by the time we got to the church the sun was shining. My mum gave me away and delivered the traditional father of the bride speech as my dad died many years ago. They were both such emotional moments for her and I, but really made the day. The sun really came out at the reception and we were able to have drinks on the lawn whilst getting our photographs taken before a fantastic meal and a brilliant evening reception where the band kept everyone on the dance floor.' 'The most memorable moment of the day, however, was arriving at the church on time only to be told the minister was nowhere to be found! For a moment, no one really knew what to do. I was panicking in the car and Blair was panicking inside. Fortunately the minister turned up a few moments later but all the guests just assumed it was me

that was late! It's funny now, looking back, as we had planned everything so meticulously, yet it was one of the few things we couldn't control.' 'Our favourite wedding detail was definitely the two huge John Deere tractors parked at the reception. They were a nod to Blair's farming background and his current sales job and everyone loved them.' 'To reflect the fact we were both born in the 80s, all of our tables were named after 80s TV programmes with the top table appropriately named He-Man & She-Ra. On a more intimate note, we were married in the church where my dad had been minister and we had organised Cancer Research charity favours (brooches for the girls and whisky for the boys) in his memory which felt deeply personal.' 'Our advice is don't stress over the little things. Your guests won't notice if certain things don't exactly match and, on the day, you'll be having too much fun to care! Think about a round top table instead of the traditional long one for your meal. It means you can talk to everyone at the table and you don't feel quite so much on display. Also make sure you both take a quiet moment together just to take a breath and watch what's going on around you as it really is the fastest day of your life. We wish we could relive the whole day again!'

With special thanks to: Photography - Chantal LachanceGibson Photography Cake - Jenny's Cakes Cars - Bothwell Bridal Cars Make up - Lucy McLean Makeup – Videography - White Balloon Films Wedding stationery - Perfect Pages Flowers - Allison's Flowers – Music - The Jack Dames Wedding Band –

Meet our Partners


Hello, I’m Lianne and I run wedding stationery & styling company LoveLi (Li is my nickname in case you were wondering). I am passionate about helping couples create beautifully bespoke wedding days that capture their unique personality, style and spirit. I am a trained graphic designer, self confessed tea addict (mines an earl grey please), I love gorgeous packaging, and all things vintage. With over a decade working in the design industry, I now work as a freelance graphic designer working on print and web projects for a variety of companies nationwide, as well as creating paper pretties for big days. I love creating thought out design concepts that build momentum through the invitation stage, right through to the big day itself. I also believe that small details make big days, so attention to detail is extremely important to me and all my work is done with as much love and care as if it were my own. I’m so delighted to be a part of the ASTW team of super talented contributors, and hopefully I can bring a creative slant on all the beautifully bespoke content you see on the blog and beyond!


Owner of Tiree Dawson Photography. I love taking photos and it's as simple as that. I can picture the image in my head, look through the lense and make it happen. It makes me shiver with excitement. My interest in photography stems from an early age. I spent many long summers as a youngster backpacking with my parents in the Pyrenees, where I helped my mother to carry her photographic equipment and record the technical details of each shot in a tiny notepad. Growing up in a highly creative environment led to me graduating with a First in Art History from St Andrew's University in 2000 (missing Prince William by just a couple of months….much to the luck of Miss Middleton). Back then I had no intention of becoming a photographer. It hadn't even crossed my mind as being a way of making a living. But, looking back, I realise that four years of studying art across a number of areas and disciplines, including photography, put me in good stead for what I do now. A deep understanding both of the rules of composition, colour and texture, and of when and how they can be broken, is something I make use of on a daily basis.


We are a Husband and Wife Photography team, Chantal Lachance-Gibson Photography, and we are obsessed with anything weddings and photography. Our style is romantic, natural and very relaxed. No cheesy posed photos with us! We love approaching a day in an unobtrusive way allowing the day to unfold naturally so we can capture our couples as they are and also their guests. We always build a great relationship between us and our clients to ensure we are more friends with cameras as opposed to just the photographers. We feel this helps us achieve what we want photo wise and also adds to our clients whole experience.


Hi, I am the owner and creator of Bespoke Vintage Castle. Creating Heirloom Brooch Bouquets and accessories, is something I take great pride in. I love all things vintage, rare and collectable, taking old pieces and making them into something new and beautiful. The love of all things retro comes from my mother. As a child we used to wake at 5 am to go to the local car boot sales and auctions. To this day I l live at vintage markets and fairs. I attend London fashion week meeting the latest designers, and bring an element of fashion into the wedding world with the pieces we make showcasing the trends on the runway. Working at BVC has opened doors, and experiences I could only have dreamed of. We have worked with celebrities, featured in numerous magazines, appeared on the runway ourselves here in the UK and internationally and have been nominated Finalists for a National Industry Award. I have truly been blessed with my Bijou company and love sharing my creations with you through ASTW.

Photography - Steve Horsley Photography

Photography - Steve Horsley Photography

Photography - Steve Horsley Photography

Photography - Steve Horsley Photography

Photography - Steve Horsley Photography

Photography - Steve Horsley Photography

With special thanks to: Accessories - Thomasina Brides – Photography - Steve Horsley Photography - Hair and Make up - Lipstick and Curls Dresses - Elizabeth Malcolm and Thomasina Brides Venue - Callow Hall

Photography by Tiree Dawson Photography

On 4th October 2014 Andy and Michelle tied the knot at Crosthwaite church, Lyth Valley and then celebrated with friends and family at Cragwood Country House Hotel, Windermere. Here they share their wedding day. 'The night before the wedding I stayed with the girls at a cottage about 5 minutes away from the church'. 'As we were getting ready I seemed to remember the rain was lashing down outside, but thankfully it had cleared by the time we got to the church, (as I was unintentionally a little late).' 'Following the service we went to the venue in a vintage car, were Andy and I shared some bubbles.' 'Once we were at the venue we had our pictures taken, wedding breakfast, and then speeches.' 'The theme of our day seemed to be simple, natural and traditional, by using dark raspberry as the colour theme we found it brought the dĂŠcor together. In terms of the fine details, I made soy candles, tied with a personalised ribbon for the wedding favours which were great. We had a picture polaroid guest book which we loved. Most of my ideas came from the internet searches and blogs but I found that Pinterest was a really quick way to get your ideas together.' 'The evening seemed to come round really fast and once we cut the cake, we seemed to dance the night away. Our advice would be enjoy the planning because it can be so much fun, and when your wedding day arrives make the best every moment you can because it goes so fast.'

With special thanks to Photography: Tiree Dawson - Church: Crosthwaite church, Lyth Valley Reception venue: Cragwood Country House Hotel Flowers: Foristry by Carmen – Cake: MacDonald Cake Company Hair: Katie Simpson Hair -

OUR contributors Bespoke Vintage Castle - Becky Ryan Photography - Frock Nottingham – Sarah Bloor at Pin Up Curl – Rochelle O'Brien – Heidi Lawton at Extra Special Touch – Celeste Batten at The Organic Cake Company With love wedding stationery – Claire Basiuk - Foxy Buds – Chantal Lachance Gibson - Isabella Jack Bridal - Miss KG (Kurt Geiger) - Reflection Hair Salon - Eye Adore U - Make Up Artist MacGregor and MacDuff - Mary Wallace – Memory Lane Flowers - A-Cakes - Airth Castle - John Macintyre & Son - Betty Bubbles - Happy Talk Events - The Blue Parrot Company - Blushbooth - Cut the Cake – Piper Services -

OUR contributors Erik Meijer Photography Ritva Westenieus – Elizabeths Cake Emporium – Cristina Lazarotto - Kaisa Fortuna Wild about Flowers - No 4. Hamilton Place – Elizabeth Malcolm - My Little Shop of Wonder – Brachetto Weddings - LoveLi – Rebecca Mallipal and Cakes by Robina - Belle Mariee by Shaista - Zoe Ann Photography - Tiree Dawson Photography - Paperknots - Flossy and Dossy – Modiste - Amamini Flowers - Thomasina Brides – Steve Horsley Photography - Lipstick and Curls - Elizabeth Malcolm and Thomasina Brides - Callow Hall - Crosthwaite church, Lyth Valley Cragwood Country House Hotel Foristry by Carmen – MacDonald Cake Company - Katie Simpson Hair - Charlie Kingsland-Barrow -

Directory Set up for the style conscious bride who wants to know where her items come from and what their story is, we ensure that all of our vendors either hand make their items or offer a totally bespoke service. We get to know them and it is only when we are happy that they fit the And so to Wed way that they make it into our fabulous Directory. It is because of this unique partnership that we can be confident that you will find quality, creativity and flair within our exclusive Directory. Coupled with this, we know that each of our vendors provide the best customer service possible ensuring that you are treated as you should be, like a queen. You can get to know our vendors through our website at as they regularly feature in our blog. Here they share their ideas and inspiration as well as their processes and how they work. If you want your wedding items to have provenance, And so to Wed is for you. We're confident that you will find what you are looking for within the And so to Wed Directory but should there be something you'd like that you can't find then please contact us as we know lots of lovely people who may just be able to help. You can get in touch at or via facebook at

Now you've found the one,

enjoy finding everything else x

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