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Bride in the city Bristol Harbour Hotel is the stylish setting for our chic celebration

SPRING 2017


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All About Eve

PREMIER STOCKISTS 28 High Street Chepstow Monmouthshire NP16 5LJ Telephone:

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7 Clytha Park Road Newport Gwent NP20 4NZ Telephone:

01633 243943

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All About Eve

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THE TEAM Editor: Helen Dorritt Sub editor: Rachael Moon Writers and contributors: Kirsten Butler, Jo Middleton, Gianina Turner Design: Jill Rowbotham Commercial director: Tracie Simms Website editor: Gianina Turner ADVERTISING To advertise in future editions of West Weddings contact Jacqui Lewis T: 0117 934 3136 E: jacqui.lewis@localworld.co.uk EDITORIAL To contribute to future editions of West Weddings contact Helen Dorritt E: westweddings@b-nm.co.uk DISTRIBUTION To have a regular free delivery of the magazine to your business contact Amanda Field T: 01242 278053 E: amanda.field@trinitymirror.co.uk SUBSCRIPTIONS A yearly subscription (four issues) costs just £10 including P&P. Call Amanda Field on 01242 278053 PUBLISHER West Weddings magazine is published by Bristol News and Media, 2nd Floor, Temple Way, Bristol BS99 7HD T: 0117 934 3000

Welcome to WEST WEDDINGS SPRING 2017

Visit our brand new website at www.west-weddings. co.uk, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ westweddingsmag and like us on Facebook at www.facebook. com/westweddingsmag FREE COVERING BATH, BRISTOL , GLOUCESTERSHIRE, SOMERSET & WILTSHIRE

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WINTER 2016

Once upon a time...

Helen Dorritt EDITOR

Join us for a wedding full of magic and sparkle at the beautiful Clearwell Castle

Winter 2016_cover.indd 1

If you got engaged over Christmas, New Year or Valentine’s Day, congratulations! Welcome to the wonderful world of weddings and hello from all of us at the magazine. We’re here to help you put together your dream wedding day by showcasing what our amazing region has to offer. And it has a lot! From the dress and the venue to those all-important finishing touches, this issue is packed full of fab ideas. Find new season gowns on page 27, our pick of the West Country’s more unusual venues on page 71 and some delicious food and drink options on page 64. And who better to inspire you than real life couples? Head to page 16 for the details of five gorgeous weddings. We were thrilled to be hosted by one of the region’s brand new venues, the Bristol Harbour Hotel, for our spring photoshoot. As always, we worked with a brilliant team of local suppliers, who created a sophisticated, modern wedding in this beautiful setting – turn to page 43 to see the results, which were expertly captured by Andrew Limb Photography. We hope you enjoy this issue, and do get in touch to let us know how your planning is going – drop us an email or say hello on our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram pages.

10/11/2016 15:39:31

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Contents SPRING 2017

REGULARS 7 WEDDING NEWS A round up of the latest news, events and dates for your diary this season 13 ASK THE EXPERTS Your wedding questions and dilemmas answered 16 REAL WEDDINGS Five couples from the region share all the special details of their big days 37 GROOMS Tips on giving a speech and our pick of the best gifts 40 ONLINE Find out how to get your West Weddings fix in between issues! 41 PLANNER Keep track of those facts and figures in our wedding countdown 78 PHOTO GALLERY Fantastic photography to inspire your wedding album 82 CAPTURE THE MOMENT A special photograph from one couple’s wedding album

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FASHION 27 43

GOWN GALLERY All the best of the season’s new dresses, with gowns from Hayley Paige, Maggie Sottero, Jenny Packham and more COVER SHOOT A stylish celebration at the magical Bristol Harbour Hotel

BE INSPIRED 57 58 61 62 65 66

PINBOARD All the finishing touches that we’re loving this season STYLED TO PERFECTION We find out at exactly what wedding stylists do to make your day perfect #YOUR WEDDING Jo Middleton explains how best to use social media to capture your day BEAUTY BIBLE The latest products to help you look great from top to toe EAT, DRINK AND BE MERRY Treat your guests with some delicious wedding catering options A WEDDING WANDER Take a walk with us around the pretty city of Bath

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VENUES 71 A selection of the region’s best places to celebrate your vows

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NEWS

Tel. 07800596008 www.staceyjade.co.uk Stacey Jade Hair

Mobile stylist specialising in Bridal Hair covering Bristol and the South West. Winner of ‘Hair’ 2014 / 2015 / 2016 for Bristol & Somerset Wedding Awards & ‘The Bride’ 2015 award for The Natonal Hairdressers Federaton.

Get yourself noticed by theBride-to-be!

Call Jacqui Lewis on

0117 934 3136

to advertise in the next issue of West Weddings magazine

©LW

We will listen to your ideas and offer our ideas to help you create your dream individually styled beautiful wedding flowers. From a single bouquet to an army of bridesmaids and button holes.

Tel 01454 856 737

We will guide you through the whole experience and help you add the special details that make the difference between a good event and a fantastic unforgettable one. Friendly / experienced / helpful / professional staff that will take the stress away from you. 3 Chelford Grove, Stoke Lodge, Bristol BS34 6DD email tina@tigerlilyflowers.co.uk web www.tigerlilyflowers.co.uk ©LW

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It’s showtime

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rganisation is key in the run up to your wedding. And there’s no better place to get your thoughts in order than at The Wedding Showcase. Held at the Royal Bath and West Showground, this two-day spectacular, which runs 4th to 5th March, has everything you need to plan the perfect wedding. As one of the south west’s biggest wedding events, The Wedding Showcase plays host to all manner of creative stalls and suppliers, such as bakers, photographers and party favour makers. There will also be live seminars where guests can hear some of the best tips from the experts on everything from budgeting to traditional wedding etiquette. But the highlight of the DHW weekend has got PHOTOGRAPHY to be the catwalks, where the bride-to-be can

DHW PHOTOGRAPHY

find the dress of her dreams, as well as glean inspiration for the bridesmaids and groomsmen. Running both days between 11am and 2pm, the catwalk will showcase all the latest styles from the region’s finest boutiques. With a fantastic range of professionals on hand, as well as beauty treatments, a café and free parking, the event is a definite must-visit for anyone planning their special day. Grab your tickets now. THE WEDDING SHOWCASE THE ROYAL BATH AND WEST SHOWGROUND W: WWW.WEDDING-SHOWCASE.COM E: HELLO@THE-WEDDING-EMPORIUM.COM

Dress for success

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Stitched with love

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ooking for vintage, handmade touches on your wedding day, but don’t fancy getting crafty yourself? Hand it over to the master crafter at To Be Adorned. Based in Bristol and run by Rebecca Parker, To Be Adorned creates beautiful bridal accessories – from garters to flower crowns – in crochet form. The business idea grew naturally out of a love of stitching and each unique piece is inspired by antique jewellery and vintage fashion. Now, the collection has launched online and is available to buy on Etsy.

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Brides-to-be can now browse the pretty range, which so far features 12 products, including ring bearer cushions and headbands, combs and shoe clips made of roses. And if you don’t find something that is perfect for you, then you can contact Rebecca and request a custom order for that special something. TO BE ADORNED W: WWW.ETSY.COM/SHOP/ TOBEADORNEDSHOP

f you’d like your wedding to be a force for good as well as a wonderful celebration, then check out Upstairs at…, a unique bridal boutique that’s run by local charity St Peter’s Hospice. Upstairs at… is a treasure trove of wedding dresses, accessories, bridesmaid dresses, formal wear and more, all preloved and donated to the charity by former brides and grooms. You’re able to shop for some amazing outfits at a fraction of the original cost, knowing that you’re also helping out Bristol’s only adult care hospice at the same time - it’s a win-win situation! If you buy an outfit, Upstairs at… also has an arrangement with a dry cleaners in Westbury-on-Trym who will provide a discount for customers.

Since the first shop opened, Upstairs at… has gone from strength to strength and is now found in two locations, Westbury-on-Trym and Nailsea. “We’re so pleased with the response we’ve had,” reports area manager Victoria Canavan, who came up the initial idea. “We’re now receiving two to three dresses per week, which is great, and I love hearing the stories behind them!” For those brides looking to donate their dresses after the big event, this can be done at any St Peter’s Hospice shop or café, or by calling Victoria to arrange collection. UPSTAIRS AT… ST PETER’S HOSPICE 12 CANFORD LANE, WESTBURY-ONTRYM, BRISTOL BS9 3DH AND 126 HIGH STREET, NAILSEA BS48 1AH W: WWW.STPETERSHOSPICE.ORG.UK/ SHOP 7


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Summer stunners L

ooking ahead to the summer months, WOW Weddings Show West is organising some fabulous wedding shows for you to enjoy. All of its shows are completely free but offer you the best entertainment, amazing suppliers and outstanding venues. Sunday 25th June sees the best-loved and busiest wedding show in Bristol at the stunning Ashton Court Mansion, with more than 50 exhibition stands. This nineteenth century mansion is set in 860 acres of landscaped gardens and deer parks, with sweeping views towards Bristol, creating the perfect blend of city and country. The show is an excellent opportunity to check out the venue at the same time as meeting lots of the area’s amazing wedding suppliers and getting a head start on your wedding planning. WOW Wedding Shows West’s other summer shows include Cheltenham Chase Hotel on 21st May and Stonehouse Court Hotel in Gloucestershire on 18th June. Head to the website to pop its autumn dates in your diary and get planning now!

WOW WEDDINGS SHOWS WEST W: WWW.WOWWEDDINGSHOWSWEST.CO.UK

Splendour and style S

tep back in time in this 16th century castle on the edge of the Cotswolds. Set in unspoiled grounds, with a vineyard to boot, the grandeur of Thornbury once housed Henry VIII and his new bride, Anne Boleyn. But no need to worry, you don’t have to follow in her footsteps when it comes to married life... Thornbury Castle has a full roster of wedding events throughout 2017, so you can plan the perfect day. The hotel and restaurant will play host to a wedding fair on Sunday 19th February, as well as an opening evening on Thursday 6th April. It’s even offering 10 per cent off weddings in May and June 2017. If you’re after a traditional affair on the big day, opt for Thornbury Castle’s ‘royal afternoon tea’ wedding. With a maximum of 22 people allowed, the special theme promises an intimate day for your and your guests. From £85 per person, the afternoon tea will include sparkling cocktails and a red carpet on arrival, delicious scones, cakes and sandwiches, and Champagne for the toasts. The team will also take care of everything from the floral arrangements and seating plans to the place cards and menus. THORNBURY CASTLE CASTLE STREET, THORNBURY, SOUTH GLOUCESTERSHIRE BS35 1HH T: 01454 281182 W: WWW.THORNBURYCASTLE.CO.UK 8

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LoveActuallyweddings

Wedding Fayres

Spring is sprung!

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ith the arrival of the new season comes a new set of exciting fairs from Love Actually Weddings in a number of gorgeous venues across the region. On March 5, and for a record-breaking 18th time, Love Actually Weddings return to Wooton-under-Edge for a fair at the newly-rebranded De Vere Tortworth Estate, previously known as Tortworth Court. “Tortworth is where it all started for us as a company,” said owner Emma, “So this fair will always be very special one for David and myself.” A week later, on March 12, Love Actually Weddings hosts The Bishop’s Palace fair in Wells. This historic building has played host to lavish hospitality for more than 800 years and offers you access to a medieval vaulted undercroft, outdoor terrace and acres of stunning gardens to stroll across in the evening. It’s perfect as a breath-taking backdrop to those all-important photographs on your special day. Owners Emma and David come home to Bristol on March 19 and will be showcasing the wedding venue facilities at the city’s M Shed museum. “It’s an iconic place to get married,” said David. “You can take your vows with the spectacular backdrop of Bristol’s harbourside, and then impress your guests by making an entrance in one of Bristol’s famous cranes – or even arrive by boat!” On April 2, Love Actually Weddings travels to the intimate Charlton House in Shepton Mallet. Owned by Dragon’s Den entrepreneur Duncan Bannatyne, it has recently been voted as the UK’s fifth most romantic hotel, so makes a perfect wedding venue. The final event of the season takes place at the Bristol Golf Club on April 9, before David and Emma take a well-earned break before the summer season in June! Admission is always free with Love Actually, so it’s a great opportunity to visit a number of stunning wedding venues across the region and start planning your special day. LOVE ACTUALLY WEDDINGS T: 01275 331188 W: WWW.LOVEACTUALLYWEDDINGS.CO.UK

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(11am - 3pm)

Lydiard House Conference Centre, Swindon Sunday 26th February De Vere Tortworth Estate, Nr Bristol & Gloucester Sunday 5th March The Bishops Palace, Wells Sunday 12th March M-Shed, Bristol Sunday 19th March Charlton House Hotel, Shepton Mallet Sunday 2nd April Bristol Golf Club Sunday 9th April Bristol Zoo Summer Special Sunday 11th June Doubletree by Hilton, Swindon Sunday 2nd July Brand New Wedding Suite Bath Racecourse, Royal Crescent Sunday 9th July

ADMISSION is always FREE with loveactually For information of all our events, please visit www.loveactuallyweddings.co.uk

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Celebrate in the Cotswolds

Guide for brides

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his 17th century stone barn sits in Binley Farm, surrounded by 400 acres of the stunning Cotswold Hills, and offers the picture-perfect backdrop for your wedding. With exposed beams, flagstones, plenty of natural light and under-floor heating, Kingscote Barn is a charming mix of the old and new. See for yourself the rustic venue at its open day on Sunday 19th March, which gives you the chance to meet hand-picked wedding suppliers, browse the latest trends and enjoy live music and sample menu tasters. The fair is open from 11.30am to 3.30pm, with no appointments required.

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THE KINGSCOTE BARN BINLEY FARM, KINGSCOTE, TETBURY, GLOUCESTERSHIRE GL8 8YE T: 01453 861161 W: WWW.KINGSCOTEBARN.CO.UK

f you’re a bride who wants a humorous break from the (often) stress and madness of wedding planning, then new tongue-in-cheek book I Am Bride: How to Take The ‘We’ Out of Wedding is the perfect light read. Written by American comedian Laura Willcox, the book is a satirical look at weddings written in the voice of a nightmarish, overbearing wedding planner, and includes advice on how to maximise jealousy when announcing your engagement on social media, how to establish yourself as the alpha over your bridesmaids and how to prevent your partner from ruining your wedding by having any opinions at all. After all, a bride is a true dictator, her wedding is her totalitarian state. Isn’t that exactly as it should be?

I AM BRIDE IS PUBLISHED BY ABRAMS AND COSTS £11.99

The word is out W

hen Olympic and Team Sky cyclist Geraint Thomas was planning his recent wedding, he and wife Sara fell in love with the stunning St Tewdric’s House – so much so, they ended up buying it! Now the couple are opening up this 19th century property for weddings, and Bristolbased The Word on Weddings is thrilled to be arranging St Tewdric’s first-ever wedding fair. St Tewdric’s is a jewel of a country house set in 10 acres of picturesque Monmouthshire countryside. Designed in an Italianate style, its romantic, Renaissance architecture makes it a beautiful backdrop for weddings. The venue is fully licensed, with four rooms available for ceremonies, and there are no set wedding packages that you’re tied into – the emphasis is on couples creating the day they want without any restrictions.

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As Geraint says: “We want every bride and groom to enjoy St Tewdric’s House and its romantic setting as much as we did and use it as their home from home on what is the most special day of their lives.” The Word on Weddings fair is taking place on Sunday 2nd April from 11am2.30pm, and is your chance to be one of the very first to look around this amazing venue and see how it could work for you. There will be a variety of top class wedding professionals offering demonstrations, entertainment, trials and samples so that

you can organise your complete day under one roof. The fair is free so just turn up! Plus, the first 50 couples will receive a VIP goody bag. This is just one of the Word on Weddings spring and summer fairs, so check Facebook for more upcoming events. THE WORD ON WEDDINGS W: WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/ BRISTOLWEDDINGFAIR ST TEWDRIC’S HOUSE W: WWW.STTEWDRICSHOUSE.CO.UK

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Private Hire & Chauffeur Service

Catering for all your Wedding Chauffeuring requirements

Nick Green t: 07877 813 739 e: greenchauffeuring@gmail.com www.greenchauffeuring.co.uk ©LW

Bridal at St Peter’s Hospice Two dedicated bridal and occasion wear departments offering preloved, unique and great value bridal wear, occasion wear, evening wear and accessories. Now open at the following St Peter’s Hospice Shops: Nailsea - 126 High Street Westbury-on-Trym - 12 Canford Lane

You don’t need to spend a fortune to look a million dollars.

Photo credit: West Weddings Magazine/Kayleigh Adams Photography

/stpetershospice Registered Charity No. 269177

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Styling short hair, natural make-up looks, invitation etiquette?

. .. s t r e p x e e h t k s a o t d e e n You These useful tips from our industry experts will leave you stress-free

Long and short of it

The natural look

A warm welcome

Question: I’ve always had short hair and don’t want to grow it for our wedding, but I also want it to look special. What are your styling tips?

Question: I don’t wear much make-up but feel I should use some on my wedding day. What sort of products would you recommend?

Question: I’m having a wedding website so I don’t want to bother with paper invitations, but my parents say it’s not ‘traditional’. Do you have any advice?

Jenny Badgcombe, Taunton

Alison Trevellan, Salisbury

Rachel Buchanan, Bristol

Hair stylist Tracy Pallari says:

Make-up artist Sally Bracey says:

Answer:

My biggest tip would be to create volume in your shorter hair. Your hairstyle will be the focal point of your outfit and having some volume will make you look even more elegant. There are several ways you can do this, including boosting your roots with specific products, such as a mousse or spray. You can also use hot rollers, or a volumising hair insert. Something to bear in mind when choosing any accessories is that there is naturally less hair for this to clip onto if you have a shorter style. Select one that isn’t too big, as otherwise it will slide out and you won’t be able to secure it properly. If you do decide, however, that you’d prefer a wedding day style that needs longer hair, then you don’t need to worry about growing it long enough in time as stylists now have a wonderful array of clip-in and temporary extensions available.

Answer: I actually get asked this question a lot! You definitely don’t need to wear loads and loads of make-up for your wedding, especially if this is something that you don’t feel comfortable with anyway – your wedding day should be about you looking and therefore feeling great, not completely different to how you usually are! For brides not keen on an overly made-up style, I would say you only need a couple of products applied correctly to make all the difference. Use a skin illuminator to give a healthy glow, and then follow this up with either a tinted moisturiser or a light liquid foundation over the top. Once your skin is looking prepped, concentrate on key features such as eyebrows and lashes, making make sure they are preened and perfect to give a polished look. Finally, a pretty blush and lip colour to match is all you need to look glowing for your big day.

W: WWW.TRACYPALLARI.COM

W: WWW.SALLYSMAKEUP.CO.UK

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West Weddings website editor Gianina Turner says:

Answer: As with all aspects of weddings, times change and many ‘traditional’ elements are not included as standard any more. Just because your parents did something one way doesn’t make it better than the method you wish to use! Using a website to invite guests is becoming very common and can save time, money and effort. However, I understand you want to keep your parents on-side, especially if they’re contributing financially. If you’re happy to compromise, you could issue a paper invitation to older family members and guests who may not have easy access to the internet or not feel comfortable doing this. You’ll keep invitation costs to a minimum, and your parents will be happy. But as with everything to do with wedding planning, at the end of the day it’s completely up to you and your partner. If it really is important, then politely but firmly tell your parents that you would rather spend the money you saved on invitations making sure your guests have a good time.

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All dressed up C

hoosing your wedding dress should be a memorable experience, for all the right reasons. And at Ellie Rose Bridal in Bath, brides-to-be can rest assured that they’re in safe hands. From comfy sofas for your guests, to the most flattering lighting – the store has everything covered so that you’ll feel like a star and look a million dollars! The eponymous founder, Ellie, has managed to curate a selection of modern, stylish and beautiful gowns, including designs by the American brand Hayley Paige. Since its inception in November last year, Ellie Rose Bridal has become one of the largest Hayley Paige Blush stockists in Europe and has seen brides travel from across the world to shop the collection. “We decided we wanted to house designs that weren’t your every day A-line or lace wedding dresses,”

explained Ellie Rose. “We wanted to have beautiful dresses that were modern, but still elegant and beautiful.” ELLIE ROSE BRIDAL 7 MARGARET’S BUILDINGS, BATH BA1 2PL W: WWW.ELLIEROSEBRIDAL.CO.UK T: 01225 443988

To the manor born N

orth Somerset venue Rookery Manor has just launched a refreshing new-look brochure that aims to change the way you tailor your perfect wedding day. Brides and grooms looking to host their big day at this historic estate, just outside Weston-super-Mare, can now create their own bespoke wedding package, giving complete freedom for the perfect day. From a sitdown meal to afternoon tea, the choice is yours, with each aspect as individual as you are as a couple. The Rookery’s refresh also includes the launch of a brand new website and a new addition to the venue’s wedding car collection, a prestigious Rolls Royce Dawn. One of very few in the country, this celebrity favourite can be hired to give you an ‘A-lister’ experience for the day. And with four licensed rooms and the space to have up to 300 guests for a reception, this 16th century manor house-turnedluxury hotel has plenty more to offer West Country couples. ROOKERY MANOR EDINGWORTH ROAD, WESTON-SUPER-MARE BS24 0JB T: 01934 750200 W: WWW.ROOKERY-MANOR.CO.UK

Made with love

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f you’re looking for a rural retreat for your wedding, then a brand new farm venue near Yeovil is offering South West couples a little slice of the countryside for your big day. The Barn at Cott Farm actually started life as the venue for owner Oliver and Rebecca Seyfried’s own wedding in July last year. The couple knew they didn’t want a formal venue, but wanted instead to use Oliver’s parents’ farm in East Chinnock, near Yeovil, from which the couple were both running their businesses. “We came up with the idea of renovating a dilapidated barn on the farm,” explains Oliver. “We set the date of our wedding for July 2016, which gave us ten months to do the work. In hindsight the plan was really ambitious!” The barn had spent the last 30 years storing farm equipment, but with the help of their families and friends, Oliver and Rebecca turned it from dilapidated to divine. The barn was then destined to be Oliver’s new furniture workshop, but fate intervened in the form of a friend asking if they could hire it for their own wedding. It was then the Seyfrieds realised they had something quite special, so The Barn at Cott Farm wedding venue was born. The venue offers festival-style receptions for up to 300 people over an exclusive four day hire period, plus there’s also the option to camp in the venue’s luxury furnished bell tents.

COTT FARM BARN COTT FARM, BROAD LANE, EAST CHINNOCK, SOMERSET BA22 9ES T: 01935 864211 W: WWW.COTTFARMWEDDING.CO.UK 14

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Ellie Rose Bridal

Ti Adora by Alvina Valenta Hayley Paige Occasions Blush by Hayley Paige Hayley Paige 7 Margaret’s Buildings, Bath BA1 2LP | 01225 443 988 | info@ellierosebridal.co.uk www.ellierosebridal.co.uk |

Sally Bracey Make-up Artist

THE BRIDAL ROOM 40 high street, westbury-on-trym, bristol

0117 908 9010 www.thebridesroom.co.uk • BRIDAL WEAR • BRIDESMAIDS • ACCESSORIES

Tracy Pallari

Sally is an award winning makeup artist boasting over 10 years experience with a real passion for weddings.

She understands the time and effort put into every wedding and believes each one should be treated with the individuality and attention it deserves.

Professional Hair & Make-Up Artist 07824 886882 www.tracypallari.com

After a trial in your own home, you will be left feeling relaxed, confident and beautiful for your special day.

Won 2015 & 2016 Best in Britain Bridal MakeUp in the NH Federation awards. www.sallysmakeup.co.uk 07880541894 | sallysmakeup@gmail.com Sally's make up

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@sallysmakeup

Sasha is a freelance Make-up Artist trained by the leading industry professionals, MAC cosmetics. She has also worked in London alongside some of the most prestigious celebrity make-up artists and her work has featured in high profile advertising campaigns. Specialising in wedding and occasion make-up throughout Wales and the South West, she often works alongside Tracy Pallari Bridal Hair Stylist to ensure that you look picture perfect on your special day.

www.sashalouisepallari.com T: 07879 630 506

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A roaring success A passion for cars met a love of vintage styling at Amelia and Will Di Claudio's wedding

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WORDS: HELEN DORRITT

REAL WEDDINGS


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he English country setting of Kingscote Barn in Tetbury, Gloucestershire was the perfect setting for Amelia and Will's July wedding, whose theme was inspired by the couple's interests. “I love bunting and all things pretty and anything vintage, and Will is a racing driver who loves cars,” explains Amelia. “This is how we came up with the concept of using the front end of a Mini as our table plan, along with oil cans and racing circuit table names, and adding this to my ideas of pink wellies filled with flowers and jam jars with stripy straws!” “The Mini table plan was definitely something different to your usual easel that no one will forget!” adds Will. His passion for cars was also evident in the choice of wedding transport, which included three Peugeot 205 track cars, a DeLorean, an Aston Martin, a Ford Escort series 1 turbo, and Amelia's very special wedding gift to Will, a 1966 Ford Mustang. This mix of the couple's interests was represented in the food, too. “Will is Italian and I'm English, so we thought it would be a lovely idea to incorporate both of us into the meals we served our guests,” says Amelia. “Our wedding breakfast was traditional afternoon tea, with mini ice cream cones as a palette cleanser and scones, jam and cream served in miniature picnic baskets and vintage china, while our evening meal was pizza from a wood fired oven.” There were plenty of sweet treats as well, as Amelia's mother and grandmother made a delicious cake, and guests could enjoy using a vintage-style popcorn machine with a selection of toppings,

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and help themselves to jars of sweets on a miniature dresser. This was definitely a DIY wedding, with Amelia and Will crafting most of the wedding props themselves. Will made and wired up the Mini table plan so it had working headlights, with Amelia writing the names on it. “Will also made all the wooden signs for me and then I hand painted them,” says Amelia. “I hand stamped everyone's names on luggage labels as the table place names which were laid on top of the most beautiful floral and spotty napkins my nan kindly made for us, 110 of them! Our favours were miniature jams which were made by a local company, Heavenly Hedgerow, which I then made frilly tops with matching material to the napkins. I'm not sure if it saved us money by doing it ourselves as it took us a lot of time, love and care, but it was totally worth the effort and everyone really appreciated the personal touches that we put into the day.” Kirsten Butler from The Little Wedding Helper was on hand to help out with all the styling details, which included decorating the barn with pictures of the couple as children and their parents and grandparents' wedding photos. “Kirsten is absolutely amazing,” enthuses Amelia. “She took the weight off my shoulders knowing that my vision for our big day was in safe hands and her attention to detail was second-to-none!” Amelia also highly recommends her florist, The Pink Peony, floral studio in Bristol. “Laura is the loveliest person and the best florist ever, and did an incredible job with our flowers.” Their wedding day brought a mix of sunshine

and showers, but no rain could dampen the enthusiasm and love of this happy couple. “It was the most perfect day we could have wished for,” says Amelia. “The best part of the day was marrying my best friend and celebrating with friends and family. It is the most amazing day of your life and just enjoy every minute. Everyone says it but it does go by really quickly, so my advice to other couples is to take time to soak it in and enjoy!”

DETAILS Venue Kingscote Barn, Binley Farm, Tetbury, Gloucestershire GL8 8YE T: 01453 861161 W: www.kingscotebarn.co.uk Photographer Visual Excellence T: 07786 165044 W: www.visuale.photo Bride's dress Special Day and Appleton's, 12 High Street, Keynsham BS31 1DQ T: 0117 986 0303 W: www.specialdayandappletons.co.uk Flowers The Pink Peony T: 07712 517234 W: www.thepinkpeony.co.uk Catering Fosters T: 0117 977 6611 W: www.fostersevents.co.uk Transport Back to the Future Car Hire W: www.backtothefuturedeloreanhire.co.uk Styling The Little Wedding Helper T: 07726 911951 W: www.littleweddinghelper.co.uk Entertainment Darren Campbell T: 07713 413940 W: www.darrencampbellmagic.co.uk 17


REAL WEDDINGS

A floral delight

WORDS: HELEN DORRITT

Mel and Paul Randall filled their wedding day with beautiful spring flowers

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ollowing an overseas proposal on the beach in Thailand, Mel and Paul enjoyed a quintessentially English spring wedding day. “We had our ceremony at St Mary’s Church in Lower Almondsbury, making Paul the fourth generation to get married at this church,” explains Mel. “His parents live in the village and have done his whole life, so it was a really very special venue for us.” The couple then followed their ceremony with a reception in Gloucestershire’s Eastington Park, a pretty country house venue set in beautiful gardens. “Eastington Park had character, lovely grounds and accommodation. We felt that it ticked all of the boxes and that it tied in with our springtime theme well,” says Mel. As it was spring, the couple opted for a wedding that was decorated with masses of flowers, which were created by Maria at Sorori. “After explaining the colour scheme and theme to Maria, she made a number of recommendations which were perfect,” says Mel. “The venue looked beautiful with flowers throughout and all of the bouquets and buttonholes were exactly how we wanted.” This included the beautiful staircase at Eastington Park being decked with delicate clouds of gypsophila and eucalyptus, and Mel carrying an exquisitely delicate bouquet that featured white roses and anemones. Mel’s strapless lace Mori Lee dress with crystal

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detailing was bought from The Bridal Room in Westbury-on-Trym, while Paul was resplendent in a navy blue three-piece suit with cream tie. “The staff at The Bridal Room were extremely helpful and made the whole experience exciting and enjoyable,” enthuses Mel. She accessorised her dress with a ‘something borrowed’ bracelet from her mum, plus earrings that were a surprise gift from Paul. Paul had one more surprise up his sleeve for his bride – a firework display in the evening, marking a magnificent finish to a wonderful day. “Seeing Mel’s face when I told her about the display was great!” says Paul. Martin Dabek was on hand to photographically capture all the details of the day, and the couple are thrilled with their visual memories. “Martin showed us his style of photography and after being recommended him by friends, we felt that he was the right photographer for us. On the day he was great – he arranged the photographs well and took both the natural and group photos that we’d asked for. We love the photos and will continue to enjoy looking at them.” Mel’s tip for other couples is “spreadsheets and highlighters – plan early to spread costs.” This organised approach means that the couple had the wedding they’d dreamed of. “Our day was perfect and we wouldn’t change a thing about it, from the ceremony to the reception! We

wanted a day to remember that was spent with all of our loved ones, and that’s exactly what we had. We loved celebrating with all of our family and friends and have great memories to look back on… we just wish we could do it all again!”

DETAILS

Ceremony venue St Mary’s Church, 3 Sundays Hill, Lower Almondsbury, Bristol BS32 4DS W: www.almondsburychurch.co.uk Reception venue Eastington Park, Eastington, Stonehouse, Gloucestershire GL10 3RY T: 01453 827926 W: www.eastingtonpark.co.uk Photographer Martin Dabek Photography T: 0117 350 1032 W: www.martindabek.com Bride’s dress The Bridal Room, 40 High St, Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol BS9 3DZ T: 0117 908 9010 W: www.thebridesroom.co.uk Groom’s outfit Men’s Hire, 39 Cotham Hill, Bristol BS6 6JZ T: 0118 973 7461 W: www.menshire.co.uk Flowers Sorori, Lowgoods Farm, Shepperdine Road, Oldbury-on-Severn, Bristol BS35 1RL T: 07775 437348 W: www.sororidesign.co.uk Catering Berry Blue T: 01453 790669 W: www.berry-blue.co.uk Videographer Iconic Image T: 07761 051768 W: www.iconic-image.com 19


REAL WEDDINGS

A sparkling affair

WORDS: HELEN DORRITT

Toni and Stewart Dines enjoyed a classic Cotswolds wedding

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t was a beautifully sunny spring day when Toni and Stewart said their vows at the pretty seventeenth century Swan Hotel in Bibury, Gloucestershire. “It had rained all day on the Friday before so I was getting worried,” says Toni. “However, we had been given a white umbrella from my brother that had been passed to two brides already, both resulting in beautiful days. Third time lucky and it seems we have ourselves a good luck charm!” The theme of the wedding was Tiffany and Co, to match Toni's Tiffany Harmony engagement ring, which she had picked out after Stewart's proposal on a beach in Hawaii. “I never thought I would have a Tiffany ring – I’m a very lucky lady!” she says. Touches of Tiffany's iconic turquoise colour were seen throughout the day, from the bridesmaids' dresses to the colours used in the guest book. There were also favours wrapped up in the famous blue boxes and white ribbons. Toni's strapless and ruched wedding gown was from Victoria Marie Bridal in Cricklade. “Victoria was more relaxed than any of the other stores that I visited and there was absolutely no pressure from her,” says Toni. Her hair and make-up was done by wedding specialist Hayley Hewett. “Hayley understood exactly what I wanted and replicated it with ease, even adding to my expectations. In the end my hair and make-up looked better than I could have ever imagined.” For the male guests, “military

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uniform and traditions such as tops and tails for the gentleman was something that we both wanted, and it seemed to work,” says Stewart, adding a traditional touch to their small and exclusive wedding. Toni's sister-in-law Natasha made the cake – “she's so talented!” For those couples currently choosing their cakes, the couple have a good tip. “If you want an elaborate cake but don’t want to be swamped with left-over cake afterwards, consider having an artificial top tier. The bottom cake can be the one that you cut and eat afterwards. A fraction of the cost and if made well your guests will never know!” Capture Every Moment photography lived up to their nams, they're thrilled with their photos. “Carissa and Paul were so easy going and down to earth that our photographs felt natural and easy which was exactly what we wanted,” says Toni. “I love looking through our photos – they literally did capture every moment perfectly!” Toni and Stewart organised the day themselves, as they wanted to ensure that their family and friends could relax and just enjoy the wedding. They also kept some surprises for their guests, including their first dance. “We had dance lessons for this and managed to keep it a secret from absolutely everybody!” says Toni. One surprise that the couple had themselves was the couple's dog, Ralph, turning up as a guest. “Keira Bentley at Westland Boarding Kennels was looking after our dog after we had

made a decision that we didn’t want anyone at the wedding to have responsibility for Ralph, even though we would have loved to have had him with us for the day,” explains Toni. “But Keira then surprised us by bringing him along to the end of the ceremony so he could be a part of the photos. Keira was brilliant, and so was Ralph!” “Ralph arriving was the biggest surprise and being able to have him in our photos for the rest of the day really made the wedding complete,” adds Stewart. Paw-fect!

DETAILS Venue The Swan Hotel, Bibury, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 5NW T: 01285 740695 W: www.cotswold-inns-hotels.co.uk/theswan-hotel Photographer Capture Every Moment T: 07521 611678 W: www.captureeverymoment.co.uk Bride's dress Victoria Marie Bridal, Chelworth Lodge, Ashton Keynes Road, Cricklade, Wiltshire SN6 6HP T: 07739 008240 W: www.victoriamariebridal.co.uk Hair and make-up Hayley Hewett Hair and Beauty T: 01793 639634 W: www.hayleyhewett.com Flowers Roses, 2 Bishops Walk, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 1JH

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REAL WEDDINGS

So much more than we imagined

WORDS: HELEN DORRITT

Hollie Carpenter and Ashley Halls got married in their dream West Country venue

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e wish we had a fairytale story but it was a girl meet boy moment in a local nightclub,” says Hollie, explaining how she and Ashley met. His proposal was a little more magical, however. “We were travelling in Croatia and stopped for a couple of nights in Hvar, a wonderful harbour town. On our first night on a walk along the promenade at sunset Ashley dropped down on one knee and asked me. It was so unexpected and very romantic with it being just the two of us.” For their September wedding, Hollie and Ashley were keen to find a venue that made them feel welcome and one that would be able to host the entire day. As soon as they walked into St Audries Park, they both knew this was the place for them. “The first time we saw the venue we didn't speak to each other on our tour in fear that the other didn't love it as much!” says Hollie. “It was a dream come true to be able to get married in such a beautiful venue with all our friends and family present.” Picking a dress was fortunately very easy for Hollie. “Many brides had mentioned that you just know you've found the right dress and this was definitely true in my case. I attended an appointment at Sassi Holford in Taunton, where the ladies were so helpful and made us feel completely at ease. My dad accompanied my mum and me – and secretly he enjoyed it! I proceeded to try on many dresses and then… the dress! It wasn’t the dress I had set out for but I knew this had to be the one from the first time I tried it on – it made me feel like a princess.”

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Since Hollie had a treat with her beautiful dress, she felt Ashley also deserved a similar experience. “Anyone who knows Ashley knows how much he enjoys cars. Being in one venue we didn't really need a car for the wedding but we decided that Ash should have a car he could enjoy on the lead up to the wedding.” Ashley didn’t quite pick what Hollie thought he would, however. “I left it to him to organise and I thought he would choose a classic car to suit the venue, but on collection realised he had gone for the opposite and it was a bright yellow Lamborghini! The car proved to be a great talking point at the wedding though, and Ash loved driving it over our wedding weekend.” The couple selected a “rustic, relaxed style” for their flowers by Jane at Eden Floral Designs, featuring pink vintage roses, gypsophila and green foliage. This floral theme was continued with the favours that Hollie and Ashley gave their guests. “My parents are keen gardeners and so we had personalised seed packets reading ‘watch the love grow’ for guests to plant and enjoy at home,” explains Hollie. The couple love live music and so packed their wedding with lots of different varieties, from a piano player at their drinks reception to a covers band, The Shuffles, during the evening reception. “The dance floor was packed all evening and we have great memories of the younger guests showing off their dance moves!” Hollie and Ashley were thrilled with their photographer, Nicky Hill. “The photos speak for themselves. Both Ash and I wanted a relaxed natural style and we were so pleased when

we stumbled across Nicky. She was amazing in taking note of our style and put us at ease throughout, ensuring that we were able to enjoy the whole day.” Their wedding was everything that the couple wanted and more. “We had such a wonderful day – it’s hard to put it into words,” enthuses Hollie. “It was so much more than we could have ever imagined. Sharing the day with our closest family and friends was so special. I wish we could relive it again and again.”

DETAILS Venue St Audries Park, West Quantoxhead, Somerset TA4 4DS T: 01984 633633 W: www.audries-park.co.uk Photographer Nicky Hill T: 07949 834933 W: www.nickyhillphotography.com Bride’s dress Sassi Holford, 6 The Bridge, Taunton, Somerset TA1 1UG T: 01823 256308 W: www.sassiholfordtaunton.co.uk Groom’s outfit Moss Bros W: www.moss.co.uk Hair and make-up Victoria Hair and Spa W: www.victoriahairandspa.co.uk Flowers Eden Floral Design, St James St, Taunton, Somerset TA1 1JH T: 01823 27663 W: www.edenweddings.co.uk Transport Drive South West W: www.drivesouthwest.co.uk Entertainment Dan Phelps W: www.phelpsmusic.com/weddings The Shuffles W: www.theshufflesband.com

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Chic in the city

WORDS: HELEN DORRITT

Rachael and Kevin Chapman tied the knot at an intimate wedding in Bath

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REAL WEDDINGS

K

evin clearly remembers the night he met Rachael at a student house party in Bath. “I was blown away by how stunning she was. I managed to grab a dance with her later in the night and was utterly amazed that this gorgeous girl was smiling at me and showing me signs of interest. I didn’t see her again that night but met again soon after and we really hit it off.” But it turned out that Kevin didn't make such an impression on Rachael at that party. “She doesn’t remember me being at that house party, which sums us up really: Rachael, gorgeous, the sort of girl who steals the attention of a whole room when she walks in; Kev, pretty unimpressive!” Luckily, the path of true love ran a lot smoother after that, and it was on their seventh anniversary that Kev proposed to Rachael over dinner in their new house. “I like that fact that it was at our new home, which made it very intimate and emotional. It was a complete surprise though, which made it even more special,” says Rachael. Even though they no longer live in Bath, the city holds very special memories for the couple and so they decided to hold their ceremony at the Guildhall, followed by a reception at the Green Park Brasserie. “We wanted something fairly unique, a little quirky, and not too ‘weddingy’, and knew that the brasserie did great food and was just about big enough for our relatively intimate wedding of fewer than 60 guests,” explains Rachael. Located in a former 1870s railway booking hall, this restaurant also fitted Kev's desire for a laid-back and informal day. Rachael's stylish ankle-length dress was a Louise Bentley design from Kate Walker Bridal in Honiton, where she also bought her jewellery.

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“I loved the service I had from Kate,” enthuses Rachael. “There's always fizz and cake!” Kev wore a French Connection suit but for him, it was always about the shoes, which were a pair of smart tan-coloured Loakes. One of Rachael's wishes for the wedding was to have beautiful flowers, and she was thrilled with the bouquet and table decorations that White Row Farm Shop Florist created for her, which included white roses, ferns and ranunculus. “They really understood what we wanted and captured my dream wedding flowers!” Due to Rachael working away from home, Kev was in charge of sorting out the majority of the day. “We were both fairly laid back about it, though, and there weren’t any arguments over the planning, and I didn’t have to make too many decisions by myself, fortunately!” Their tips for other couples? “Keep it simple and enjoy each step of the planning,” says Rachael. Kev adds: “Don’t stress and worry about the little things – just get the big ones sorted early on and the rest will fall into place. And don’t listen to everybody who tells you that you ‘have’ to do things a certain way – just do things the way you want.” The day was expertly captured by Phil Webb from Reward Photographics. “He was great – professional and skilled, but he also clearly enjoyed what he was doing,” says Rachael. “To have a photographer who's as enthusiastic as you are really helps!” For Kev, “the day was less emotional that I thought it would be, in a good way, in that there was a fantastically relaxed atmosphere, no stress – bar maybe a few nerves waiting for Rach to arrive! – and no drama.” Rachael had a slightly

different experience, however. “I found it an emotional whirlwind of excitement, love, nerves and joy!” While the couple may have experienced the wedding in different ways, they're both in agreement that it was everything they had hoped and planned for. “It was the best day of my life,” says Rachael. Sounds like the perfect wedding!

DETAILS Ceremony venue The Guildhall, High Street, Bath BA1 5AW T: 01225 394041 W: www.bathvenues.co.uk Reception venue Green Park Brasserie, Green Park, Bath BA1 1JB T: 01225 338565 W: www.greenparkbrasserie.com Photography Reward Photographics T: 07580 946515 W: www.rewardphotographics.co.uk Bride's dress Louise Bentley at Kate Walker Bridal, 49B High Street, Honiton, Devon EX14 1PW T: 01404 598145 W: www.katewalkerbridal.co.uk Groom’s outfit French Connection W: www.frenchconnection.com Loake W: www.loake.co.uk Flowers White Row Farm Shop Florist, White Row Farm, Beckington, Frome, Somerset BA11 6TN T: 01373 830024 W: www.whiterowfarm.co.uk/flowers Cake Mrs B’s Cakes W: www.mrsbscakes.co.uk Entertainment Sticky Toffee Jazz W: www.stickytoffeejazz.co.uk

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NEWS

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GOWNS

GOWNS The dress of your dreams True to its name, many of the dresses from local boutique Lace and Grace’s 2017 collection feature this beautiful fabric and all are sure to add a touch of grace to any bride! Based in Keynsham, Lace and Grace is run by mother-daughter duo Carol and Becky Pincott, and showcases a diverse range of hand-picked dresses. Designers stocked include Wtoo by Watters, Lusan Mandongus, Annasul Y, Mikaella and Paloma Blanca, and you can see some of the latest dresses from several of these designers over the next few pages, all of which are available to try on in the boutique. As well as these chic designers, Lace and Grace also offers a bespoke dress design service for brides where experienced dressmaker Carol can bring your unique vision to beautiful fabric life. There’s also the option to adapt and customise any of the dresses bought from the boutique so you can truly have the dress of your dreams. LACE AND GRACE 7 Market Walk, Keynsham, Bristol, BS31 1FS T: 0117 986 8911 W: www.laceandgrace.co.uk LUSAN MANDONGUS W: www.lusanmandongus.com MIKAELLA W: www.mikaellabridal.com PALOMA BLANCA W: www.palomablanca.com WTOO BY WATTERS W: www.watters.com/wtoo

ABOVE MASHA BY WTOO BY WATTERS A fit and flare gown creates a wonderful silhouette, and this beauty is made with Chantilly lace. LEFT 4728 BY PALOMA BLANCA Keep warm on chillier days with the beautiful lace sleeves on this two-tone dress, finished off with an illusion neckline.

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GOWNS

TOP LEFT 2107 BY MIKAELLA The crepe of this fit and flare gown gives it a classic touch, while the slit-front skirt and plunging neckline adds modern detail. ABOVE LEO BY LUSAN MANDONGUS Add a touch of vintage style to your day with this pretty lace dress with cap sleeves, illusion neckline details and layering to the skirt. LEFT ANASTASIA BY WTOO BY WATTERS The intricate lace makes this dress a true show-stopper, perfectly complemented by the plunging back and deep V-neckline.

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GOWNS

ABOVE ZETA BY LUSAN MANDONGUS Be brave and bare your shoulders with this exquisite lace gown that also features a white lace and tulle overlay to the skirt. TOP RIGHT 2105 BY MIKAELLA Sleek and chic, this dress is sure to turn heads! We love the long sleeves and the way that the buttons run down the entire length of the train. RIGHT 4746 BY PALOMA BLANCA You will be ticking several style boxes with the deep V-neck, sheer lace and beaded belt applique on this fit and flare dress.

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GOWNS

WE LOVE...

...coloured dresses

MAGGIE SOTTERO DIVINA

ELIZA JANE HOWELL CHIANTI

While a white wedding dress looks beautiful, it’s only been a ‘tradition’ since Victorian times – before that a coloured dress was the norm for brides. We love that this is being revived for S/S 2017, with designers opting for colours ranging the palest pink to blues, greens and more – even an ombré effect, as shown in Mori Lee’s show-stopping design. For brides who still want to err on the side of tradition, opt for the light silver of Hayley Paige’s multitiered Dori gown, available to try on locally at Ellie Rose Bridal in Bath. Lovers of pink will rejoice in a selection that takes in the blush rose of Catherine Deane’s Tamsin and Essense’s peach-toned number to the deeper shades of Maggie Sottero’s Divina. And while wedding traditionalists will say that green is unlucky, we say that they haven’t yet seen the absolutely gorgeous Jenny Packham Apache dress, with its intricate embellishments overlaying the striking mint hue.

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Weddings

WEST

CATHERINE DEANE TAMSIN

HAYLEY PAIGE 6413 DORI

MORI LEE 5101

ESSENSE D1874

JENNY PACKHAM APACHE

ALFRED ANGELO 2577

GOWNS

GET THE

look

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GOWNS

Visit our vintage inspired boutique or contact us for an appointment. 7 Market Walk, Keynsham, Bristol, BS31 1FS 01179 868911 | info@laceandgracebridal.co.uk www.laceandgracebridal.co.uk 32

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GOWNS

In bloom If you're planning a wedding at the same time as planning a family, then we think you'll love the new spring/summer 2017 dresses from Tiffany Rose. This British company specialises in maternity bridal and occasionwear, making dresses for brides that are flattering, comfortable and beautiful – everything you need if you're expecting a baby on your wedding day. Many of the gowns this season use a new and luxurious bridal jersey fabric that's beautifully soft at the same time as giving a lustrous sheen. Also new to Tiffany Rose’s collection is April – an innovative nursing dress that has wrap-around ties allowing mums to breastfeed on their special day. As well as looking fab, we also want to celebrate the fact that Tiffany Rose dresses are designed and made here in the UK, so you can be sure that your gown has been created to the very highest standards. Prices range from £140 to £599, and there are also a range of gorgeous bridesmaid dresses on offer for your favourite ladies. TIFFANY ROSE W: www.tiffanyrose.com

LEFT AND BELOW LUCIA A gorgeous combo of lace bodice and three quarter-length sleeves, over a flowing full skirt.

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GOWNS

FAR RIGHT AND RIGHT ROSA The wrap-over neckline gives a flattering finish, while lace cap sleeves add a pretty and delicate finishing touch. Rosa is available in both ankle-length and kneelength styles.

BELOW STARLA This ribboned kneelength gown features leavers lace, which is a beautiful traditional machine-made lace with scalloped edges.

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GOWNS

FAR LEFT AND LEFT APRIL This award-winning dress has wrap-around ties to make breastfeeding simple, and comes in both long and short styles.

BELOW WILLOW Available in both long and short styles, this simple and chic jersey dress is ultra comfortable and drapes beautifully, and is embellished with a flowing satin ribbon belt.

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35


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GROOMS

GROOMS

Words of wisdom We asked former grooms for their top tips for getting the most from your wedding day

Write down your favourite moments from the day and give it to your partner on your first anniversary as a special gift.

JOHN MCDOUGAL, KEYNSHAM

Get a good photographer so that you’re happy with the photos from the day, as you’ll be looking back on these for the rest of your life. I also regret not videoing the ceremony, so consider whether this is important to you.

NICK FOSTER, BATH Check your best man has the rings and that he knows exactly which pocket he’s stashed them in. We nearly had a Four Weddings and a Funeral moment when my best man spent a frantic few minutes thinking he’d lost them! Wear something you really love, rather than something you think you ought to wear. You want to feel comfortable and look back on the photos with a smile, not a grimace.

JAMES CARMICHAEL, SWINDON

STUART PRESTON, FOREST OF DEAN Allow more time than you think for things such as the speeches, photographs and any games you want to play. There’s nothing worse than stressing on your wedding day that things are overrunning!

WILLIAM FORSYTH, BRISTOL Be sure to thank your family and your new in-laws in your speech, particularly if they’ve been helpful with planning the day.

NEIL BLANDFORD, WELLS

STEVEN JARNDYCE, TROWBRIDGE Remember that there are a lot of different people listening to your speech, not just your friends. Keep it classy, keep it complimentary, keep it from the heart.

JEEVAN SINGH, SALISBURY

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Surprise your partner on the morning of the wedding by having a little gift delivered. This can be a piece of jewellery, a bottle of Champagne, a card – anything you know that will make them smile.

Relax and just soak up all the moments! As long as you end up married to the love of your life, nothing else matters.

LOUIS WOZNIAK, BRISTOL

Make sure you at a decent breakfast in the morning and, if possible with the timings, a good lunch too. I didn’t, and was absolutely starving by the time the canapés arrived!

RICHARD BARNETT, GLOUCESTER 37


GROOMS

Figures of speech

Get your marriage off to an excellent start by making a speech your guests will remember – for all the right reasons

A

h, the groom’s speech. The source of anxiety and sweaty palms for many men, especially if you’re not used to speaking in public. Traditionally the brief for the groom’s speech is quite simple: thank the bridesmaids, thank your partner, your families and anyone else who helped to put the day together, express your joy at marrying the love of your life and then introduce the best man. You can stick to this basic structure or, as with any element of a wedding, change it up to suit you, but whatever your choose to include, take heed of our top tips to help you make a speech that your guests will love, not cringe at.

1

Don’t make it too long. Although those guests who placed a monetary bet on a long set of speeches will be looking at their watches with glee and internally thanking you, no-one else will. There’s nothing worse than seeing people getting restless as a speech goes on, and on… and on. Around ten minutes is an ideal length of time for your speech.

2 3

Starting with “my wife and I…” will always get a great reaction. Yes, it’s a cliché but it’s the first time you’ll get to say it, so enjoy it!

38

If your wife isn’t going to make her own speech, remember that you’re speaking for

the two of you so use ‘we’ where appropriate. Also make sure to ask her in advance for where and how she’d like to be mentioned, and if there’s anything in particular she’d like you to reference on her behalf.

4 5

If your bride is making her own speech, go over them together to make sure your material doesn’t overlap. Remember that there will be older family members in the room, so keep the smut out of your speech. Watching Aunt Doris wince as you tell the story of the debauched stag night will stay with you for all the wrong reasons. (And chances are your best man will include enough for the both of you anyway.)

6

Everyone loves hearing about how a couple met, so a humorous yet sincere telling of how it happened is always a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.

7

Avoid just turning your speech into reading out a list of thank you. Inject a little personality into what you’re saying. Anecdotes always go down well and make what you’re saying more interesting. When selecting these, however, refrain from making them into an in-joke that’s relevant to just

a handful of people in the room, as this will alienate the other guests and make them mentally switch them off from listening to the rest of what you are saying.

8

Your wedding speech is your chance to tell your guests, and your new wife, just how you feel so make sure you use the opportunity to say some sincere and heartfelt things.

9

Although you don’t need to learn your speech off by heart, it will sound better if you don’t just read it off a piece of paper. Familiarise yourself with it before the big day, and make note cards with bullet points as helpful prompts that you can just glance down at.

10

If you do fumble or lose your way, it doesn’t matter. Your guests are the people who care most about you in the world, so they won’t care if it’s not a professional speech. Speaking from the heart will always be better than being slick.

11 12

Your best man will be taking the opportunity of his speech to make fun of you, so get a little jibe in where you can! And finally, if the thought of giving a speech really is too hideous to contemplate, then why not hand over duties entirely to your new wife, or give one together? If she’s more comfortable with public speaking then play to the strengths in your relationship – after all, marriage is the ultimate in teamwork.

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GROOMS

With all my heart Make your groom feel like the luckiest man on earth, even before the wedding day festivities begin, by surprising him with a thoughtful gift...

1

1. ROCHET BROWN LEATHER WALLET, £89 W: WWW.OLIVERSWEENEY.COM 2. HUGO BOSS MEN’S WATCH AND CUFFLINK SET, £150 W: WWW.BEAVERBROOKS.CO.UK 3. PHILIPS 7000 WET AND DRY ELECTRIC SHAVER, £270.00 W: WWW.SHOP.PHILIPS.CO.UK

2

4. PROPERTY OF THE BRIDE, PERSONALISED GROOM’S PANTS, £20 W: WWW.NOTONTHEHIGHSTREET.COM 5. MONTBLANC STARWALKER MIDNIGHT BLACK BALLPOINT PEN, £245 W: WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

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6. PERSONALISED IPHONE 7 PHOTO CASE, £10.80 W: WWW.PIXAPRINTS.CO.UK 7. BARBOUR BS037 SUNGLASSES, £59.95 W: WWW.BARBOUR.COM 8. ANODISED TITANIUM CUFFLINKS, £60 W: WWW.AZENDI.COM

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WINTER 2016

SPRING 2017

Bride in the city

Once upon a time...

The Bristol Harbour Hotel is a stylish setting for our chic celebration

Join us for a wedding full of magic and sparkle at the beautiful Clearwell Castle

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Want even more inspiration in between issues? Head over to our new-look website where you’ll find real weddings and photo galleries, wedding fair information and a directory of local suppliers, our blog, a link to read all of our back issues online and much, much more! Weddings WEST


The essential wedding guide Use this page to plan your budget and organise the big day — without the stress of last minute panics 1 YEAR TO GO

Decide on the date. Set your budget. Make an appointment to see the minister if you are marrying in a church, or the registrar if you’re having a civil marriage. Make a list of the guests. Book the florist and the photographer. Book the wedding reception and transport. Start looking for your dress. Decide on the best man, bridesmaids and the ushers. Confirm all bookings in writing.

6 MONTHS TO GO Order the wedding stationery. Send out the invitations. Arrange the first fitting for your wedding dress. Pick the bride’s wedding shoes and accessories. Choose outfits for the groom, best man, bridesmaids, fathers, mothers and ushers. Organise rings for the bride and groom. Look for a band or DJ to play at the reception. Take out wedding insurance. Book the honeymoon and check your passports. Consult your hairdresser about the day.

3 MONTHS TO GO Decide on your wedding list and circulate to guests. Order the cake. Confirm ceremony details with the registrar or minister. Buy gifts for the best man, ushers and bridesmaids. Discuss seating plan with the caterer. If your honeymoon is abroad, arrange necessary vaccinations.

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Plan your hen and stag parties. If required, notify your bank, building society and relevant authorities of the date that your name will change.

1 MONTH TO GO Arrange for a final fitting of your wedding dress. Confirm the arrangements in writing with the reception venue, caterer, florist, photographer, transport provider and others. Confirm the honeymoon arrangements. Have hen and stag nights. Finalise the reception seating plan with the caterer. Anyone speaking at the wedding should write, time and practise their speeches.

1 WEEK TO GO Arrange a wedding rehearsal. Collect your dress. Wear your wedding shoes around the house to break them in. Complete your final beauty preparations. Pack for your honeymoon. Think through the logistics of the day so everyone is clear what is happening.

ON THE DAY Have a relaxing bath or shower. Eat breakfast. Bridesmaids and page boys arrive. The photographer arrives. Hair and make-up. Bride and bridesmaids get dressed. Wedding transport arrives. Relax and enjoy the day!

BUDGET PLANNER Keep tabs on what you’ve spent, what you will need and how much money is left in the piggy bank with this handy guide. PLANNER

ESTIMATED ACTUAL

Engagement ring Wedding ring (hers) Wedding ring (his) Dress Shoes Veil Lingerie Hair accessories Jewellery Hair trial and on the day Make-up trial and on the day Cosmetics Groom’s suit Groom’s shoes Attendants’ outfits Ceremony fees Flowers Reception venue Catering Drink Cake Entertainment Photography/video Transport Stationery Favours/attendants’ gifts First night hotel Honeymoon Going away outfit Honeymoon wardrobe Insurance Other

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BOOK YOUR FREE CONSULTATION and come along to my Cake Studio where I will design you your perfect wedding cake.

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Vintage, contemporary, sugar flowers and delicious cakes to choose from.

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Contemporary artwork wedding and portrait photographer

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Bride in the city

Combining a rich history with the most luxurious modern facilities, the Bristol Harbour Hotel was the ultimate urban escape for our chic photoshoot Photography: Andrew Limb Styling: Kirsten Butler Words: Gianina Turner


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here better for a seriously stylish wedding celebration than the beautiful Bristol Harbour Hotel – a new wedding venue on the South West block? In keeping with the season, we opted for a palette of lush green, lilac and clean whites that was the perfect match for the rooms in this luxurious hotel. The venue and all the fabulous details were beautifully styled by Kirsten Butler from The Little Wedding Helper and captured by Andrew Limb Photography.

THE VENUE

We’re delighted to introduce you to a recent addition to our directory of West Country wedding venues: Bristol Harbour Hotel. Set in the heart of the city near the harbourside, it fuses two iconic former bank properties to offer contemporary luxurious accommodation with impeccable design, plus a spectacular events space that’s perfect for weddings. The 19th century former Lloyds Bank and its Edwardian neighbour, the Midland Bank building, have been restored to their former glory both on the inside and outside. These architecturally stunning buildings are now enjoying a new lease of life as a luxury hotel and wedding venue while still keeping their sense of history and grandeur. Should you chose to say ‘I do’ at the Bristol Harbour Hotel you’ll be guaranteed not only a prime location, exciting wedding packages and flexible options, but also stunning photography opportunities in and around the venue. The Lloyds building was designed in the 19th century by renowned architect William Bruce Gingell, who was a fan of the Byzantine style. Gingell’s inspiration for the magnificent Sansovino Hall – the former banking hall which is now the main function room – was the Venetian library of St Mark. It boasts opulent columns, a detailed ceiling and an impressive skylight, and has undergone a full and sensitive restoration to create a magnificent function space that’s licensed for ceremonies and can accommodate up to 350 guests. When it comes to food, the hotel’s awardwinning Jetty restaurant offers a selection of set menus and bespoke dining options to choose from. In the evening, guests can enjoy cocktails at The Gold Bar and then retire to one of the 42 luxury bedrooms for a good night’s rest. And here’s another thing you’ll love about this venue: the bank’s former vaults are set to become a luxury urban spa, opening later on this this spring, so you and your guests can enjoy some post-wedding pampering, too!

THE PHOTOGRAPHER

“We had a great time at the Harbour Hotel on a beautifully crisp day and the venue is ama-zing!” shares Andrew. His flair for wedding photography meant that he knew exactly how to choose the best angles of the venue and work with the hotel’s unique architecture and location in order to capture our city wedding story. “The natural light coming through the huge windows in the Jetty restaurant, edged with amazing Bristol blue glass panes, was so beautiful and I was keen to incorporate it in a few shots,” Andrew enthuses. “I also loved the grandeur of the Sansovino Hall, as it has some fabulous architectural features and decorations that were perfect to feature.” 44

A true professional, Andrew took reportage style shots of our bride and groom Nadia and Andy whilst making them feel at ease – just like he does when working on real weddings. He also carefully captured those special details that make each wedding unique, including the cake, flowers, styling and décor. “I love capturing the true vibe of a wedding and specialise in natural-looking images, to beautifully preserve the feel of the day and all the special moments which the couple might otherwise miss,” he explains. In the afternoon, Andrew took Nadia and Andy to quirky corners and cobbled alleyways outside the hotel to showcase the city vibe of Corn Street and St Nicholas Market. “The contrast of ‘modern urban’ and neo-classical architecture made for some great, slightly alternative pictures, which drew a crowd of admiring onlookers as we were shooting!”

THE DRESSES & ACCESSORIES

Our bride Nadia wore three stunning wedding dresses from Lace and Grace, paired with accessories from Bridezillas. Lace and Grace is a stylish bridal boutique in Keynsham, near Bristol, owned by mother and daughter duo Carol and Becky Pincott. Since opening its doors in 2015, the boutique has been offering brides-to-be an impressive selection of ontrend, fashion-forward gowns from a line-up of fantastic international designers. There’s also the option to have a bespoke couture dress just for you, created by talented designer and seamstress Carol. Now in its sixth year, Bridezillas is a wellestablished name in bridal accessories. “With the introduction of our Eliza Jane Howell dress collection we have gone from strength to strength. We’re also pleased to announce that 2017 will see an expansion in the Abigail Grace range, our own in-house designs,” says Amanda Davis-Harrison. As the owner of Bridezillas and designer of the Abigail Grace range, Amanda handcrafts each piece herself using only the finest components. “We love to create something a little unique for each bride at affordable prices.” The first dress for our bride Nadia was 2106 by Mikaella Bridal. A modern ball gown design, it featured an illusion guipure lace bodice with a deep V-neckline and double crossover spaghetti straps at the back, finished off with a gorgeously full tulle skirt. Amanda accessorised this with the new ‘Autumn’ side headpiece from Abigail Grace. This stunning accessory is handmade to order using a mixture of freshwater pearls and Swarovski crystals with gold leaves, and features warm tones of ivory, dusty pink and gold. She paired it with the ‘Vintage’ bracelet by Abigail Grace and a pair of White Ivy’s ‘River’ bronze and crystal drop earrings. A total show-stopper, the second dress was 4714 by Paloma Blanca. This stunning satin fit and flare dress with a plunging V-neckline and double criss-cross beaded straps at the back was the ultimate Hollywood glamour piece. It also featured beaded appliqué at the waist and Swarovski buttons, which flowed down the length of the skirt and train. Adding to the wow factor was the ‘Rosie-Lea’ full crystal hair vine from the new collection by Twilight Designs, ‘Dainty’ delicate long crystal drop earrings by White Ivy and a cubic zirconia bracelet.

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The final gown, Lenora by Wtoo by Watters, featured a high neckline with cap sleeves and cut-out details to the waist. It also incorporated stunning circle lace, giving it a vintage feel, while a delicate keyhole back added the perfect finishing touch to this incredible beaded dress. Amanda accessorised it with the ‘Naveaha’ set by Abigail Grace, featuring a gorgeous headpiece, earrings and bracelet that are handmade to order with delicate Swarovski crystals and freshwater pearls on tendrils of delicate blush tone wire.

THE SUITS

Our groom Andy wore a three-piece light grey Santinelli fitted suit from Slaters in Bristol. This modern cut was accessorised with slim ties in fresh green and lilac shades to coordinate with the colours of the shoot and create a sleek, sharp look. A Scottish based family company, Slaters has 25 stores nationwide, including ones in Bristol and Cheltenham. Its menswear is available to buy or hire, and caters for a wide variety of styles and budgets. The best news is that some of Slaters’ suits start from as little as £89 and the store also offers a free lifetime alteration service on all garments.

THE MAKE-UP

Professional make-up artist and bridal specialist Sally Bracey created the perfect looks for Nadia to match the dresses, accessories and hairstyles. Her impressive career spanning over 10 years includes TV 50

shows and film experience as well as bridal make-up, so Nadia was in expert hands! Sally prepped Nadia’s skin with a thin layer of Nars all day luminous foundation, which was set with Laura Mercier translucent powder. To accompany the first dress, she defined Nadia’s eyes with an Anastasia Beverly Hills palette using lilac and plum eyeshadow. For the lips, she opted for a soft light pink lipstick, Creme Cup by Mac. Sally then upped the wow factor and created a second look featuring a dramatic eyeliner flick and plum lipstick – perfect for the Paloma Blanca Hollywood glamour gown! For the third dress, Sally gave Nadia a blushing bride look, using eyeshadow in soft pink and Mac’s Divine Divine liquid lipstick, the perfect springtime shade of creamy rose.

THE HAIR

Tracy Pallari is a talented hairstylist with over 20 years’ experience in bridal hair, magazines and professional photoshoots. When creating Nadia’s hairstyles for each look, she considered the style of the dress and how best to showcase its unique features, also skillfully incorporating Bridezilla’s dreamy hair accessories to finish off each hairstyle. “For the first dress, I wanted to create a pretty and romantic half up/half down look to complement the dress without covering up the stunning back detail,” explains Tracy. “I used large tongs and heat protection spray to create soft, spiral curls, then pinned the hair

to one side with lots of volume to balance the proportion of the beautiful, tulle skirt. A softly waved, side swept fringe framed the face and the rose gold side hair piece from Bridezillas worked perfectly to complete the look.” The next look was equally gorgeous, as Tracy outlines. “When I saw this amazing dress, I knew instantly it needed a glamorous hairstyle to emphasise its shape. After prepping the hair with hot rollers, I pinned it up into an elegant, almost Grecian shape with height and volume. A low side parting with the front hair smoothed out towards the back added simplicity to the style. Finally, I pinned the sparkly hair vine all around to look like a tiara – the perfect finishing touch for a Hollywood glamour bride!” The final look was inspired by the pretty pearl and crystal hair vine chosen by Amanda. “This intricate yet very delicate headpiece needed the hair smooth at the front so it could be wrapped right round to the back,” shares Tracy. “Slightly unstructured waves and curls added a lot of volume and height to balance the pretty neckline of the lace dress.”

THE FLOWERS

The fabulous fresh flowers making up the bouquet, buttonholes and pedestal arrangement were provided by Tilly Tomlinson Flowers, a florists located in the centre of Bristol – in fact, just around the corner from the Bristol Harbour Hotel! Tilly went for a spring-fresh mix of lilac, tulips, clematis, Dancing Clouds roses and pale

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grey senecio foliage for the bride’s bouquet. The groom’s buttonholes were equally elegant: the first one used Dancing Cloud rose, senecio, thlaspi and clematis, while the second was made with carnation, tulip and hypericum, plus a feather for a striking finishing touch. Taking inspiration from the shoot’s theme and colours, Tilly created a splendid urn arrangement for Sansovino Hall featuring branches of magnolia, lilac, tuberose, roses, stocks, clematis, eucalyptus, lisianthus, senecio, olive and thlaspi in beautifully soft tones of lilac, sage green, silver grey and purple. With almost twenty years’ experience as a wedding florist, Tilly knows how to create the perfect bouquet for every bride-to-be. “I’ve worked with many brides over the years but every wedding still gets me buzzing! Each time I work with our clients to create bespoke designs to match their schemes, wishes and budgets.”

THE CAKE

A well-made cake is the star of any wedding reception and this astonishing four-tier cake from Bake My Cake really stood out on the day. “Inspired by a garden image, I created a trellis effect on classic white sugarpaste to cover three of the layers,” explains Emma Buston, the creative force behind Bake My Cake. “I then added handcrafted clematis flowers – each petal was cut out and then veined individually to form the delicate flowers in a mix of purple, lilac and green.” We also loved the pink heart-shaped lollipop biscuits made especially for our bride and groom. Very popular as favours for guests, these are available in vanilla, lemon, sweet cinnamon or coconut flavours.

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Working from her cake studio in Ham Green, Bristol, Emma is passionate about baking and handcrafting sugar flowers. “Once I talk to couples, I then create bespoke wedding cakes taking elements from their invitations, the material from the bride’s dress or their chosen colour themes,” shares Emma. Her wedding cakes not only look good but also taste amazing: from lemon cake with passionfruit curd to chocolate mud cake with sea salt flakes, caramel and chocolate buttercream, couples can have a different flavour for each tier.

THE STYLIST

With many years of experience under her belt and several wedding industry awards, Kirsten from The Little Wedding Helper seamlessly brought all the details of the day together to create our chic and urban wedding. “When putting the mood board together I used the interior of the hotel as my starting point, as the ceiling in the Sansovino Hall is an incredible green,” explains Kirsten. “The colour palette of greens, whites and lilacs was refreshing, colourful and definitely said that spring was coming!”

THE MODELS

Nadia and Andy were both from Bristol agency Mustard Models, and are experienced models who knew exactly how to rock the camera for the perfect shot! Both have equally interesting careers outside of modelling: Nadia is a medical nutritional therapist and actor, while Andy is an actor and musician – he has a recurring role on Casualty, so keep an eye out for him next time it’s on your screen!

CO N TAC T S VENUE BRISTOL HARBOUR HOTEL, 49-55 CORN STREET, BRISTOL BS1 1HT T: 0117 203 4445 W: WWW.BRISTOL-HARBOUR-HOTEL.CO.UK/ WEDDINGS PHOTOGRAPHY ANDREW LIMB PHOTOGRAPHY W: WWW.ANDREWLIMBPHOTOGRAPHY.COM DRESSES LACE AND GRACE BRIDAL BOUTIQUE, 7 MARKET WALK, KEYNSHAM, BRISTOL BS31 1FS T: 0117 986 8911 W: WWW.LACEANDGRACEBRIDAL.CO.UK ACCESSORIES BRIDEZILLAS,10 SANDY PARK ROAD, BRISLINGTON, BRISTOL BS4 3PE T: 0117 904 3039 W: WWW.BRIDEZILLAS.BIZ MENSWEAR SLATERS, THE GALLERIES, UNION STREET, BRISTOL BS1 3XD W: WWW.SLATERS.CO.UK HAIR TRACY PALLARI T: 07824 886882 W: WWW.TRACYPALLARI.COM MAKE-UP SALLY BRACEY T: 07880 541894 W: WWW.SALLYSMAKEUP.CO.UK FLOWERS TILLY TOMLINSON FLOWERS, THE STOCK EXCHANGE, 34 ST NICHOLAS STREET, BRISTOL BS1 1TG T: 0117 904 1141 W: WWW.TILLYTOMLINSONFLOWERS.CO.UK CAKE BAKE MY CAKE T: 07980 981890 W: WWW. BAKEMYCAKE.CO SHOOT STYLIST THE LITTLE WEDDING HELPER T: 07726 911951 W: WWW.LITTLEWEDDINGHELPER.CO.UK MODELS NADIA ACHHA AND ANDY JONES AT MUSTARD MODELS W: WWW.BIGMUSTARD.CO.UK

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10% off 2016/17 Winter Wedding Venue Hire

www.grittletonhouse.co.uk • 01249 782 434 • weddings@grittletonhouse.co.uk 56

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WHAT WE’RE LOVING THIS SEASON

Wear your feelings on your sleeve with a pretty rose gold bracelet, £30 from Pia

Make your mark on the day with a custom stamp of the two of you. It costs £65 from Get Stamped UK on Etsy

[Wish bracelet wedding favour] Zoe Barker Textiles’ Zoe Barker handmade bracelet Textiles’ and poem (£5) handmade makes an unusual bracelet and wedding favour poem, £5, makes or gift your an for unusual bridesmaids wedding favour or gift for your bridesmaids

with Festoon your venue etty pr s thi ing us rs we flo nd, rla ga l pompom flora s ble Ta ng lki Ta £14 from

Betsy Benn’s Couples Destination Print (£52) is an eyecatching way to tell your love story and a great centrepiece for your cake table

Share the details of your wedding day with these unique Scratch to Reveal Invites, £5.49 for ten from Ginger Ray

FOR MORE VISUAL INSPIRATION VISIT OUR BOARDS AT WWW.PINTEREST.COM/WESTWEDDINGS Weddings WEST

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Styled to perfection Wedding stylists are becoming more popular, but what exactly do these talented people offer a couple? We chat to award-winning stylist The Little Wedding Helper to find out more

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tyling. Inspiring. Hiring. That’s how The Little Wedding Helper, aka Kirsten Butler, sums up her offering. She’s there as an extra pair of hands on the big day, helping to transform your venue with her keen eye for detail and gorgeous props available for hire. Brimming with ideas to make your day personal to you and give your venue that wow factor, we put the kettle on, opened a packet of biscuits and had a chat with the lovely Kirsten to get the lowdown on what exactly wedding styling is and why it may be just the thing that you and your partner have been searching for…

SO, WHAT EXACTLY IS A WEDDING STYLIST?

Essentially, my job as a wedding stylist is to unravel your vision of your big day. I listen to your likes and dislikes and your expectations of what your wedding should 58

look like. My consultations are usually done over coffee and cake, but increasingly I also often chat with my long-distance couples over Skype. Once I know what my couples imagine their dream wedding to be then I start weaving my magic, ensuring things such as the floral design, wedding furniture and the table centerpieces are just what my couples are looking for to complete the overall aesthetic of their wedding day.

IS A WEDDING STYLIST AND A PLANNER THE SAME THING?

This is a question I get asked a lot and in a nutshell the answer is no. Wedding planners tend to cover many diverse bases such as sourcing suppliers, scouting potential venues, planning menus and managing your budget. Wedding stylists, however, focus on creating a pictureperfect wedding day for you.

HOW WILL HIRING A WEDDING STYLIST MAKE A DIFFERENCE TO A COUPLE’S BIG DAY?

My aim is to bring my couples’ ideas to life on the wedding day itself. We start by creating a Pinterest board, a collection of things that have caught their eye. This isn’t necessarily limited to wedding photos – I’ve worked on boards that include the couple’s favourite pieces of artwork or literature, for example. Once we have everything pinned to the board I can usually spot a running theme, which the couple themselves more often than not hadn’t realised was there. We can then start to chat about colour choices and other elements of the day such as the bride’s dress, the venue and flowers to ensure they all work together well. On the day itself I decorate the venue with lots of love and attention to detail, giving the couple a stress-free day and the

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reassurance that it’s all taken care of and will be just as they imagined it to be.

DO YOU HAVE ANY STYLING TIPS TO SHARE WITH OUR READERS? I would say be selective. A wedding that has incorporated too many themes can look overdone. Be sure to pay special attention to detail where your guests will be spending a lot of their time, too – for example, your guests spend a lot of their time sitting at their table during the day, which is why sequinned linen proves to be so popular.

CONTACT THE LITTLE WEDDING HELPER T: 07726 911951 W: WWW.LITTLEWEDDINGHELPER.CO.UK

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WE WANT TO HEAR FROM

Tell us about your big day or wedding plans; let us know all about the gorgeous dress you discovered or about that perfect venue. Ask us any questions you have about planning for your nuptials or share some useful tips of your own.

Email the editor at westweddings@b-nm.co.uk and you could be gracing the pages of our next edition.

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#yourwedding Jo Middleton explains how to use social media to capture and share your special wedding moments

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hat’s your wedding day about for you? It’s an opportunity to celebrate your love and make a commitment, but it’s also a day to create memories – memories that you share with the people closest to you. It’s no surprise then, given that people want to capture and share this special day, that social media, such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter has found itself a place in many modern weddings. A lot of your guests will be taking and sharing photos anyway, so introducing a planned social media element to your wedding simply helps to co-ordinate this and make it easier for you, and everyone else, to see what’s being said about your special day.

CHOOSE A HASHTAG

You may have used hashtags already, perhaps to follow comments on your favourite TV show, but if not, don’t worry, they’re very straightforward. Hashtags are just a word or phrase that’s added to a social media post that allows you to easily find all the posts about that particular topic. Search for #GBBO on Twitter, for example, and you’ll find all of the posts about The Great British Bake Off that have used #GBBO. When choosing a hashtag for your wedding, there are a couple of things to keep in mind. Firstly, keep it short and simple. By the end of the day your guests are going to be a little tired and emotional, so choose a hashtag that’s going to be easy for people to remember. Your names

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and the year are ideal. When Bonnie MacCallum married her husband Steve in 2014, they used #bonnieandsteve2014. “Our hashtag wasn't very creative,” admits Bonnie, “but we wanted to keep it simple. This meant that everyone, especially when drunk, would remember it!” Secondly, do your research. If you have very common names, you may find your name and date combination is already in use. “It's really important to check the hashtag out before you tell people about it,” agrees Karie Murray, who used a hashtag as part of her wedding day with husband Alan. “My first name is very unusual so #karieandalan was available, but I have seen weddings where the hashtag is something like #smithwedding16 and there have been a few weddings on the same hashtag, which can mean it all gets very confusing!”

PREPARATION IS KEY

A bit of pre-planning is essential if you’re going to get the most from your wedding hashtag. For guests to be able to post updates and photos to social media you’ll need a good Wi-Fi connection that doesn’t buckle under pressure. Confirm this with the venue in advance and ensure that login

details are clearly displayed on the tables. You could even set up Wi-Fi boosters to help. In addition to Wi-Fi details, make sure you publicise the hashtag in as many places as possible, and encourage guests to use it whenever they’re sharing their photos. As well as including it in obvious places like the invitations, order of service and on the tables, think creatively about what your guests might be taking pictures of. Perhaps you could have it on flags stuck in your canapés or parcel tags tied to Champagne bottles? A quick look on sites such as Not On The High Street and Etsy reveals lots of sellers who will design you beautiful custom signs, so you can display these in places such as the present table and publicise your hashtag.

CAPTURING THE MOMENT

Once you’ve got people using the hashtag, there are then two key ways to view your hashtag moments – on the day, to share pictures and updates in real time, and after the event to look back on the wedding. To make the hashtag a live part of the day, you could set up a screen in your venue. “We used a company called Buzz Radar,” says Bonnie. “All the pictures were projected onto a big screen so all the guests could see them.” A screen is a great way to get everyone involved and encourage more people to use the hashtag. After the wedding, you can use the hashtag to create an online story of the day using a tool such as Storify. This can then be shared with your guests and with friends or family who couldn’t make the day. You could also turn your hashtag photos into a real life keepsake. Companies such as PastBook allow you to do things like create photo books using Instagram photos from multiple users, filtered by hashtag. So there you have it – if you want an easy, affordable and fun way to share your special wedding day moments, do consider a hashtag. If nothing else, it will definitely help to keep any teenagers at the wedding entertained! 61


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Beauty Bible A selection of our favourite beauty products for the new season

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NEAL’S YARD WILD ROSE BEAUTY BALM

Not a new product (it recently celebrated its ten-year anniversary), but this is one multi-tasking item that we think you should know about. You can use this delicious-smelling balm as a cleanser, facial moisturiser, face mask, lip balm and nail balm. Packed with nourishing rosehip oil, jojoba oil and shea butter, it has a wonderfully velvety texture and truly deserves its place on your dressing table.

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£38 FOR 50G W: WWW.NEALSYARDREMEDIES.COM

HAPPY JACKSON HIGH FIVE HAND CREAM

You want to make sure your hands are well moisturised to show off your engagement and wedding rings, so pick up a tube of this shea butterenriched product to keep them looking their best. Happy Jackson is known for its vibrant and fun packaging design, and this brightlycoloured tube is sure to make you smile every time you use it. £4.95 FOR 75ML W: WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

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VINEYARD CANDLES GIN AND TONIC SCENTED CANDLE

Think about how relaxing it would be to lie in a hot bath, sipping a G&T while this beautiful hand-poured candle delicately scents the air with hints of juniper, coriander and citrus. Any pre-wedding stress is sure to slide away! If G&T’s not your preferred tipple, you’ll also find Prosecco, mojito, pina colada, Pinot Grigio and Merlot candles in the range. £20 W: WWW.PERSORA.COM

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RITUALS OF AYURVEDA HIMALAYA SCRUB

The Indian practice of Ayurveda aims to restore balance by cleansing and nurturing both body and soul – sounds just what a stressed bride-to-be needs! The new Rituals of Ayurveda collection from Rituals Cosmetics adheres to this philosophy, creating a range of products that are sure to soothe and nourish your body. We love the Himalaya Scrub, which contains Himalayan salts to gently exfoliate your skin and mint to revitalise, while Indian rose oil and almond oil leave it beautifully soft.

£19.50 FOR 450G W: WWW.RITUALS.COM

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GOYA BLACK ROSE PERFUME

A revival of a classic perfume from the fifties and sixties, Black Rose by Goya is a truly romantic fragrance that’s just the ticket for a wedding. After extensive research, the original formula for the perfume, created by the founder of Goya, was rediscovered in the Amersham Museum and this scent was relaunched. Still using the original packaging design, the perfume has top notes of bergamot and clove, a heart of rose and geranium and base notes of jasmine and musk, making it a gorgeous blend of fresh florals with a lingering delicious musk.

£49.99 FOR 100ML W: WWW.GOYABLACKROSE.COM

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TOM FORD CHEEK COLOUR

We’re big fans of Tom Ford here at WW Towers, as this brand creates some wonderfully long-lasting make-up. New this season is Cheek Colour, a sumptuous powder blush that glides on like a cream, thanks to the inclusion of rich emollients. You can build the colour up, starting with a barely-there bridal glow and ramping it up to a more dramatic look that’s perfect for hen dos or date nights. In eight gorgeous shades, the hard thing will be picking your favourite!

£48 W: WWW.TOMFORD.COM

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BE INSPIRED Raise a glass with the Fizzy Fellows Prosecco van

Eat, drink and be merry From afternoon tea to paella, we look at ways to make your wedding catering even more delicious

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s weddings become more individual and personalised, there are more ways than ever to extend that to the food and drink you serve, too. No longer is it a prerequisite to serve a sitdown three-course meal if that’s not your cup of tea (or plate of salmon). Here are some of the more unusual options to keep you and your guests fed and watered...

SHARE A SLICE OF YOUR BIG DAY!

Everybody loves pizza, and what better way to 64

soak up copious amounts of Champagne than with a delicious, crisp-baked sourdough pizza, with mouthwatering toppings, straight from a hot wood-fired pizza oven? Parking up their Landrover at your venue, which comes complete with two wood-fired ovens, the Pizzarova team of dough-making pizza geniuses use a swanky Swedish tipi to keep everything dry, while your guests smell the aromas of bubbling cheese and baking bases wafting from the ovens. Guests can choose their own toppings (locally sourced by this Bristol-based company), to add to rich, juicy special-recipe tomato sauce and the soft, creaminess of Brue Valley Farms’ mozzarella, then watch their own pizza baking fresh to order with the addition of handmade flavoured oils and rocket. Alternatively, the Pizzarova team can work with you to create a four-flavour pizza buffet and salads fit for the occasion.

Keep it classic with afternoon tea

The Landover is able to accept invites to weddings within an hour or so radius of its home in Bristol. On the day it is fully selfsufficient with water and power so all that’s needed is a 5x5m plot to set up in.

TEA FOR TWO

If you’re rocking the vintage vibe for your wedding, serving afternoon tea is a perfect complement to your theme. Tea ‘n’ Cake is a Frome-based company that specialises in crafting a traditional afternoon tea for you and your guests – all served with beautiful vintage china and cutlery. Choose from classic components such as cucumber sandwiches, Cheddar cheese and chutney sandwiches and éclairs, plus more unusual treats including earl grey shortbread and salted caramel brownies. And, of course, afternoon tea wouldn’t be the same without scones with clotted cream and jam.

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BE INSPIRED WE ALL SCREAM...

On a warm day, your guests will certainly appreciate a cooling ice cream or two. Bristolbased Vee Double Moo serves what it calls “grown-up soft serve ice cream” from a fleet of retro VW campers and tricycles. From cones served with homemade brownie pieces to ice cream sandwiches with lemon and ginger curd, these are sure to go down a treat! Over in Cheddar, Humphry’s Van Events offers Somerset’s Lovington ice cream and sorbet, complete with flakes, fudge and sauces. Now form an orderly queue...

PERFECT PAELLA

Bring a flavour of Spain to your big day by serving up a delicious dish of paella, and who better to do this than a chef from Catalonia? Las Tapitas are based in the heart of the Cotswolds and cover all of the South West. “I’m from Barcelona, and Las Tapitas specialises in large paellas plus Spanish tapas and Catalan delicacies,” explains head chef Carlos. “Growing up in Catalonia, I was greatly influenced by my mother and grandmother’s home cooking.” On moving to Cheltenham he saw a gap in the market to provide these dishes to us lucky West Country folk. Las Tapitas can operate indoors or outdoors, and there’s also the option for Carlos and the team to cook your paella in front of your guests for a truly interactive experience. With authentic produce coming from Bristol’s El Comado Spanish store, Las Tapitas also offers an extensive tapas menu featuring hot, cold and Catalan specialities, including cured pork loin, empanadas, salt cod salad, stuffed squid and patatas bravas.

PROPOSE A TOAST

To go with all this delicious food, consider serving up a special drinks menu. Using Cedric, their vintage Citroën van, Couple of Mugs can offer a mobile tea and bar service for your big day, complete with personalised sign and playlist. Cedric can even become a cider wagon – perfect for a West Country celebration! If you’re partial to a mojito or White Russian, then The Cocktail Caravan offers cocktails, mocktails and a full bar and bottle service served from Norman, the cutest red-and-white polka-dot caravan. They’ll even come up with a signature drink just for your day. And since a wedding isn’t complete without a glass of something bubbly, check out Fizzy Fellows, who serve Prosecco on tap from a specially converted van. Cheers!

CONTACTS COUPLE OF MUGS W: WWW.COUPLEOFMUGS.CO.UK FIZZY FELLOWS T: 01202 416555 W: WWW.FIZZYFELLOWS.CO.UK HUMPHRY VAN EVENTS W: WWW.HUMPHRYVANEVENTS.CO.UK LAS TAPITAS T: 07584 628053 W: WWW.LASTAPITAS.CO.UK PIZZAROVA W: WWW.PIZZAROVA.COM TEA ‘N’ CAKE W: WWW.TEANCAKE.CO.UK THE COCKTAIL CARAVAN T: 07708 474993 W: WWW.THECOCKTAILCARAVAN.CO.UK VEE DOUBLE MOO W: WWW.VEEDOUBLEMOO.CO.UK

The dough masters at Pizzarova in action Bring some Spanish flair to your wedding with Las Tapitas

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BE INSPIRED

A WEDDING WANDER AROUND

Bath

We take a look at some of the wedding businesses in this stunning heritage city

ELLIE ROSE BRIDAL

7 MARGARET’S BUILDINGS WWW.ELLIEROSEBRIDAL.CO.UK Check out some of the best dresses from the other side of the Atlantic! This new boutique stocks up-andcoming designers Hayley Paige and Jessica Williams.

KRYSTLE BRIDES

11 ST JAMES PARADE WWW.KRYSTLEBRIDES.CO.UK You’ll find pretty gowns here from the likes of Maggie Sottero, Mark Lesley, Augusta Jones and Ivory & Co, plus bridesmaid dresses and accessories.

BATH CAKE COMPANY

FOUNTAIN BUILDINGS, 14 LANSDOWNE ROAD WWW.BATHCAKECOMPANY.CO.UK Founded by award-winning cake designer Celia Adams, Bath Cake Company specialises in wedding and event cakes, and you can visit the shop in the centre of the city to plan out your edible design in the company's inspirational consultation room. 66

THE ROYAL CRESCENT HOTEL 16 ROYAL CRESCENT WWW.ROYALCRESCENT.CO.UK

Say your 'I dos' in one of the most exclusive Bath addresses. The hotel has recently opened its wedding garden, so you can have an alfresco ceremony in its gorgeous grounds.

THE ASSEMBLY ROOMS BENNETT STREET WWW.BATHVENUES.CO.UK

Lovers of the Georgian period – and Jane Austen – will find the exquisite city centre Assembly Rooms an extremely fitting backdrop for their ceremony and reception.

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Ju l i a n R o a d

ROMAN BATHS PHOTO: A THING LIKE THAT

BE INSPIRED

THE ROMAN BATHS

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TALLULAH ROSE FLOWER SCHOOL

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28 MILSOM STREET WWW.TALLULAHROSEFLOWERS.COM Always dreamed of doing your own wedding flowers? Tallulah Rose runs wedding courses and other workshops from its school in the heart of the city.

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Did you know that one of Bath’s most historic landmarks is licensed for ceremonies? Enjoy a wedding with a difference among the atmospheric Roman architecture.

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STALL ST WWW.BATHVENUES.CO.UK

ade Pa r LUXQUISITE

4 BLADUD BUILDINGS WWW.LUXQUISITE.CO.UK This gorgeous boutique is one of the South West’s exclusive Pronovias stockists, and also has dresses from designers Catherine Deane, Essense and Martina Liana.

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VENUES

AN UNFORGETTABLE WEDDING VENUE

The elegant architecture of the former Banking Hall, magnificent skylight, exquisite interiors and beautiful décor, make Bristol Harbour Hotel an unforgettable wedding venue. PLEASE CALL 0844 811 1103 OR EMAIL BRISTOL.EVENTS@HARBOURHOTELS.CO.UK FOR MORE INFORMATION. PLEASE QUOTE ‘HARBOUR WEST WEDDING’ WHEN MAKING AN ENQUIRY.

BRISTOL HARBOUR HOTEL & SPA, 55 CORN STREET, BRISTOL BS1 1HT www. b r i stol -harbour-hotel .co.uk 68

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Rich in history Helen Dorritt explores a former financial landmark that’s enjoying a brand new lease of life

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etting married in a former bank doesn’t sound like the most romantic thing to do, but when the bank in question is a Grade II listed landmark, it’s clearly not going to be your typical town centre branch with grey swirly carpets and a huge plate glass front window. Housed in a clever fusion of the former Lloyds and Midland Banks on Bristol’s famous Corn Street, the Bristol Harbour Hotel is the latest addition to the city’s thriving wedding scene – and what an addition. Oozing historical chic, this stylish hotel is right in the heart of the city’s bustling streets and offers a wonderful setting for an urban celebration. The Lloyds Bank building was originally the headquarters of The West of England and South Wales Bank and was designed in the 1840s by William Gingell, who was also responsible for a number of the city’s other well-known buildings, including The Old Fish Market and the General Hospital. It was built to emphasise the wealth and power of the bank, but unfortunately it didn’t stop them from going bust twenty years later, after which the building was taken over by Lloyds and served as a branch for them until 2014. The Midland Bank has a similarly

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impressive pedigree, being built in 1922 in an Edwardian Baroque style and featuring a clock tower, carved sculptures over the door and, appropriately, Bristol blue glass windows. Gingell modelled his building after Sansovino’s 16th century library in St Mark’s Square, Venice, and it’s this Italian architect who now gives his name to the centrepiece of the hotel, the truly magnificent Sansovino Hall. Now while this is an adjective that’s often overused, in the case of this room it’s very much justified. Soaring stone columns, archways and a glorious green and gold ceiling are what set it apart, and the hall’s current incarnation for weddings and events feels much more of a happy fit than its previous life where it was inhabited by cashiers and queues of people paying in money. The Sansovino Hall can seat up to 350 for a wedding reception, but works equally well for a smaller celebration of under 100. It’s licensed for civil ceremonies, too, but as it’s also steps away from the register office on Corn Street there are plenty of options when it comes to the legal bit. Wander upstairs and you’ll find three floors of sumptuous bedrooms in all shapes and sizes. As the building used to be just on the

one floor, it’s taken some clever architectural redesigning to create the rooms, some of which have views out onto the bustling St Nicholas Market and all of which feature luxurious fittings and fixtures. You’ll also find a very special bridal suite for post-reception relaxing in style. There’s even more to come for the Bristol Harbour Hotel, too. Plans are afoot for a smaller licensed room in the former vaults, which will be arrived at via a candle-lit walkway. Also opening up later on this year in the underground space is the Urban Retreat spa, which will be available for both guests and non-guests. Offering a range of massages and therapies including hot stone massage and reflexology alongside beauty treatments such as ESPA holistic facials, manicures and pedicures, this will be the icing on the (wedding) cake for this chic venue.

BRISTOL HARBOUR HOTEL 55 CORN STREET, BRISTOL BS1 1HT T: 0117 203 4445 W: WWW.BRISTOL-HARBOUR-HOTEL.CO.UK PRICES START FROM £70 PER PERSON

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� Experience perfection �

Country House Weddings VENUES

Exclusively Weddings, Exclusively Yours

Gloucestershire

Clearwell Castle 01594 832320

Somerset

Essex

01984 633633

01245 362555

St Audries Park

Leez Priory

Essex

Gosfield Hall 01787 472914

Award-winning venues • Exclusive use • Luxury accommodation Exquisite food • Licensed for Civil Ceremonies & Civil Partnerships

www.countryhouseweddings.co.uk Weddings

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VENUES

WE WANT TO GET MARRIED...

…somewhere unusual

GET THE

venue SECRET WORLD WILDLIFE RESCUE

WOOKEY HOLE

S

ince the Marriage Act of 1994 opened up venues other than churches and register offices for couples to say their vows, you’ll find a huge variety of places on the listed of approved premises, meaning you can have a wedding ceremony that really does fit in with the vision you’ve always dreamed of. If you’re looking for somewhere that your guests haven’t seen before, we’ve put together five of the more quirky wedding venues in the region, from a football stadium to a circus school. Interest piqued? There are lots more unusual venues that you can consider, including a celebration among the vines at Aldwick Court Farm and Vineyard, under a star-studded sky in the Planetarium or on stage at The Bristol Hippodrome.

CIRCOMEDIA

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GOING UNDERGROUND Imagine saying your vows in a cave that’s millions of years old, lit by twinkling candles and surrounded by clear pools. Head to Wookey Hole in Somerset and this dream can come true. You’ll find a choice of three

chambers for your civil ceremony, from a smaller, intimate cave to a larger one that holds up to 110 people. There’s also the option to hold your reception in the venue’s circus-themed restaurant, which can seat up to 200 guests, and there are lots of fun extras you can add to the day including a Victorian Penny Arcade, circus workshops or booking the Wookey Hole Witch to have photos taken with your guests! WOOKEY HOLE CAVES THE MILL, HIGH STREET, WOOKEY HOLE, WELLS, SOMERSET BA5 1BB T: 01749 672243 W: WWW.WOOKEY.CO.UK PRICES START FROM £2,150 FOR A CEREMONY

NIGHTS AT THE CIRCUS Did you know that Bristol has a circus school? And did you know that one of its sites, the Georgian St Paul’s Church, is available for weddings? Right in the heart of the city centre, St Paul’s was known as ‘the wedding cake church’ due to its distinctive spire shape, whic is pretty appropriate for your big day. Available to hire for receptions, this beautiful Gothic-style building has huge windows, a

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CIRCOMEDIA

BATH RACECOURSE

sprung floor and lots of the original features including the stone font and gallery. Circus can be a part of the day, too, with the option to hire highly skilled performers and take advantage of the trapezes rigged in the ceiling. St Paul’s is also still consecrated as a C of E church, so if you have a link to the area then a religious ceremony is possible, too. CIRCOMEDIA ST PAUL’S CHURCH, PORTLAND SQUARE, BRISTOL BS2 8SJ T: 0117 924 7615 W: WWW.CIRCOMEDIA.COM PRICES START FROM £3,150 FOR A RECEPTION

A WINNING GOAL Lovers of the beautiful game can celebrate their love at Bristol City’s home ground, Ashton Gate. Licensed for civil ceremonies, the ground has a room for any size of celebration, from 20 to 800. You’ll certainly have some unique photo opportunities when you and your guests go pitchside, and you can also revisit the venue on your first anniversary with complimentary tickets for a football or rugby game. ASHTON GATE ASHTON ROAD, BRISTOL, BS3 2EJ T: 0117 963 0680 W: WWW.ASHTONGATESTADIUM.CO.UK/WEDDINGS PRICES START FROM £45 PER PERSON

FIRST PAST THE POST Continuing with the sporting theme, Bath 72

Racecourse not only offers a flexible space for your wedding for up to 300 people, but also gives you some outstanding views right across the city and surrounding countryside. Sip Champagne on the Royal Crescent roof terrace and enjoy a private balcony overlooking the racetrack, or opt to dine in style in a luxury marquee in the Paddock Pavilion, with its distinctive striped lawn. BATH RACECOURSE LANSDOWN, BATH BA1 9BU T: 01225 960305 W: WWW.BATH-RACECOURSE.CO.UK PRICES START FROM £76 PER PERSON

BACK TO NATURE Animal lovers rejoice! Leading Somerset wildlife charity Secret World Wildlife Rescue has now licensed its 17th century Bluebell Barn, in the enchanting setting of the rescue centre’s Sedgemoor site. This Grade II-listed building has recently undergone extensive conservation work with the help of the Heritage Lottery Fund, and is a lovely rustic spot to say your ‘I dos’. Your guests can also enjoy seeing the resident wildlife and be entertained by the centre’s bird handlers. SECRET WORLD WILDLIFE RESCUE NEW ROAD, EAST HUNTSPILL, HIGHBRIDGE, SOMERSET TA9 3PZ T: 01278 783250 W: WWW.SECRETWORLD.ORG PRICES AVAILABLE ON REQUEST

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VENUES

Thornbury Castle is one of the most unique and romantic wedding venues in the country. Offering intimate all inclusive packages from ÂŁ4,000 to exclusive hire of the Hotel with marquees to accommodate 200 guests within our beautiful grounds. 27 individually designed bedchambers Award winning cuisine and consultation with the Chef Civil ceremony licence 15 acres of private ground and gardens Personal Wedding Coordinator Please contact our dedicated Wedding Coordinator to arrange a personal viewing and organise your bespoke package. Telephone: 01454 281182 www.thornburycastle.co.uk Email: events@thornburycastle.co.uk

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VENUES

Relaxed, Romantic Wedding Photography...

07740 349913

stewartmcpherson@btinternet.com

stewartmcphersonphotography

Weddings with a difference... at the Aztec Hotel & Spa

The Complete Wedding Package - includes * * * * * * * * *

* Disco & Resident DJ Complimentary food tasting * Suite for Bride & Groom Newlywed couple included - with * 6 months spa membership - for our compliments Newlywed couple Arrival drinks * 1st year anniversary stay Chair covers * Room hire Flowers for all tables * Red carpet welcome 3-course meal with coffee * 2 complimentary Signature rooms Wine with the meal * Preferential room rates for guests Wine for the toast Evening buffet For more information, contact our Wedding Specialist Lauren on 01454 201090. Aztec Hotel & Spa Aztec West, Almondsbury, Bristol BS32 4TS aztechotelbristol.co.uk

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Wedding Wedding Showcase Weekend / Dates Grand Reveal - ofMarch our newly Sunday 19th 2017 refurbished wedding suite Sunday 24th September 2017 Saturday 28th January 2017 10am - 1pm | Free Admission Sunday 29th January 2017

Drop in any Saturday to 9am our - 5pm | Free Admission see function suites, no appointment required

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VENUES

New season, new style The Aztec Hotel and Spa in Bristol has recently had an impressive makeover. Helen Dorritt finds out more

B

ristol’s Aztec Hotel and Spa already has a well-deserved reputation for weddings and events, but that’s set to get even better with completion of a £1m redevelopment. The restaurant, spa changing rooms, guest rooms and main wedding function suite have all enjoyed a makeover, making this luxurious hotel even more indulgent! To complement the refurbishment, the hotel has also changed its wedding packages and now offers both a bespoke option and a fixedprice package. Details included in the Aztec’s packages are a complimentary menu tasting, a toastmaster, a red carpet welcome and hire of the civil ceremony room, while if you opt for a bespoke wedding, you can mix and match from a menu of options to craft your ideal celebration. These include having the Garden Room turned into a private dining room for you and your guests for dinner the night before the wedding or for a group breakfast the morning after.

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What hasn’t changed, however, is the hotel’s attention to detail. Wedding co-ordinator Lauren Manning is on hand to guide you through the process from start to finish, along with the rest of the Aztec’s expert team, and to ensure that you have the wedding day you’ve always dreamed of. As the hotel also has a luxurious spa and pool, it makes a great location for a hen do, pre-wedding pamper weekend or a relaxing session the night before the big day itself. With a whirlpool, sauna and steam room available to use, plus a range of treatments including facials, massages, reflexology and make-up lessons, there’s plenty to tempt you! If this sounds like your kind of venue for your kind of wedding, then take advantage of the hotel’s drop-in Saturdays to go and have a look around the venue. There’s no need to book – you can just turn up to meet with the team and see the venue while enjoying a complimentary glass of fizz. And if you’d like to see the hotel set up for a wedding and

to meet some of its recommended suppliers, pop Sunday 19th March and Sunday 24th September in your diary, as on these dates the Aztec will be holding its wedding showcases with many local companies including Iced Magic wedding cakes, Mango Photography and Daisy Lane Floral Design. Also worth noting for those of you planning your big days for later on in the year is that there’s a special winter offer, where couples can receive 20% off the venue’s complete wedding package for celebrations between November 2017 and March 2018.

AZTEC HOTEL AND SPA AZTEC WEST, ALMONDSBURY, BRISTOL BS32 4TS T: 01454 201090 W: WWW.THWAITES.CO.UK/HOTELS-AND-INNS/ HOTELS/AZTEC-HOTEL-BRISTOL/ PRICES START FROM £35 PER PERSON

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VENUES NEWS

THE GABLES HOTEL

GRITTLETON HOUSE & STABLES

t: 01454 201090 e: laurenmanning@ aztechotelbristol.co.uk W: www.aztechotelbristol.com cApAcItY: Up to 150 for Wedding Breakfast and 250 for evening Reception.

©LW

Bristol Road, Falfield, Gloucestershire GL12 8DL T: 01454 260502 E: weddings@thegablesbristol.co.uk W: www.thegablesbristol.co.uk

Grittleton, Chippenham, Wiltshire, SN14 6AP T: 01249 782434 E: weddings@grittletonhouse.co.uk W: www.grittletonhouse.co.uk

CAPACITY: Up to 150 guests for Ceremonies and Receptions, up to 200 guests for Evening Receptions. FACILITIES: Set in a rural location and convenient for local churches, The Gables offers a delightful setting for wedding receptions, civil ceremonies and partnerships. As a privately owned hotel we offer friendly and flexible service and we will tailor make your wedding to ensure your perfect day - you can relax and enjoy the company of your guests while we take care of the rest.

©LW

CAPACITY: The House can hold up to 180 for ceremonies, 126 in The Red Gallery or 180 across both Galleries for wedding breakfasts & www.timbishop.co.uk 300 for evening receptions. We can also cater for up to 500 in a marquee within the grounds.  The Stables can hold up to 70 for ceremonies & wedding breakfast & 110 for evening receptions. FACILITIES: Stunning Victorian mansion set in 35 acres of attractive Wiltshire parkland. Just 30 minutes drive from the centre’s of Bristol & Bath & less than an hour & half from the M25. The Estate offers two exclusive wedding venues; The House with its high decorative ceilings, beautiful working fireplaces, magnificent sweeping double stair case and striking Italian sunken gardens and  The Stables, a quirky suite of rooms within the original Victorian estate stable yard, offering the ultimate DIY wedding.  En-suite accommodation also available.

TYTHE BARN AT PRISTON MILL

TRACY PARK Bath Road, Wick, BS30 5RN T: 01179371800 E: weddings@tracypark.co.uk W: www.tracypark.co.uk

Priston Mill, Bath, BA2 9EQ T: 01225 423894 E: info@pristonmill.co.uk W: www.pristonmill.co.uk

CAPACITY: With several rooms licensed to hold civil ceremonies, we can offer ceremonies for between 2 and 100 guests and are able to cater for up to 160 guests in the evening.

CAPACITY: ceremonies & Receptions up to 150 guests & 200 in the evening

FACILITIES: Set in 240 acres of mature parkland Tracy Park is one of the most beautiful wedding venues in the Bath and Bristol area. This 17th century Jacobean Manor House boasts a magnificent façade which makes a stunning backdrop for your wedding photographs. The venue also has 42 recently refurbished en-suite bedrooms offering the perfect accommodation for guests.

FACILITIES: The stone walled 18th century Tythe Barn has a high vaulted roof with exposed timbers and is perfect for wedding ceremonies and receptions. To one side of the barn there is a bar, well stocked with local brews and on the mezzanine a comfy seating area. The adjoining lounge, complete with wood burner, is a cosy area for reception drinks and relaxing in.

©LW

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©LW

FAcIlItIeS: At the Aztec Hotel & Spa, we’re proud of our four-star approach to everything we do and we’re confident you won’t find a warmer reception anywhere in the South West.

Aldwick Court Farm & Vineyard, Aldwick Court Farm, Redhill, Bristol, BS40 5RF T: 01934 864 404 E: weddings@aldwickcourtfarm.co.uk W: www.aldwickcourtfarm.co.uk CAPACITY: Exclusive use of the venue means we are able to accommodate up to 150 guests for a civil ceremony and wedding breakfast. Evening receptions can be held for a maximum of 220 guests. FACILITIES: An exquisite English vineyard, overlooked by the Mendip Hills and set amidst beautiful countryside, Aldwick Court Farm & Vineyard is a charming wedding venue in the heart of rural North Somerset. Home to Aldwick Wines, the venue, in all its splendour, is exclusive and secluded, boasting two beautiful stone barns licensed for Civil Marriage Ceremonies. A delightful and alluring setting, it is as stunning inside as it is outside, with the New Barn offering exposed timber beams, an oak-floored reception area, atmospheric bricked-walled bar and panoramic views of the countryside. With Aldwick’s dedicated team always on hand to extend attentive, friendly support, couples can rest assured that their big day will exceed expectations.

Aztec West, Almondsbury, Bristol, BS32 4tS

PHOTOgRAPH BY CHRISTO NICOLLE

ALDWICK COURT FARM & VINEYARD

Aztec Hotel & SpA


VENUES NEWS

EASTWOOD PARK COUNTRY HOUSE

bowood hotel

Falfield, Gloucestershire, GL12 8DA • T: 01454 262805 • W: eastwoodpark.co.uk

bowood hotel, Spa and Golf Resort, Calne, wiltshire SN11 9PQ t: 01249 822228 e: weddings@bowood.org w: www.bowood.org/weddings CAPACItY: the Kerry Suite can hold up to 120 for a ceremony and 160 for a wedding breakfast, but is extremely versatile and can be arranged to accommodate smaller weddings too FACIlItIeS: Set in the beautiful 2,000 acre bowood estate in the heart of the wiltshire countryside yet only minutes from civilisation, bowood offers the complete package as a wedding venue, from the ceremony itself to the evening reception for up to 250 and a boutique hotel for guests to stay in. there is also a gorgeous spa and exclusive 4 bedroom lodge (Queenwood lodge) ideal for the bride and bridesmaids to stay in the night before. ©LW

CAPACITY: Wedding breakfast 110. Reception 180 (more with marquee). FACILITIES: Magnificent country house within 200-acre private estate with valley views. 69 bedrooms. Licensed for civil weddings and partnerships. Available exclusively. ©LW

THE KINGSCOTE BARN

OWLPEN MANOR Owlpen Nr. Dursley Glos. GL11 5BZ T: 01453 860 261 E: sales@owlpen.com www.owlpen.com

Binley Farm, Kingscote, Tetbury, GL8 8YE T: 01453 861161 E: info@kingscotebarn.co.uk W: www.kingscotebarn.co.uk

CAPACITY: wedding breakfast 30 to 180, receptions for up to 250 people. Accommodation for 40 people on the estate.

CAPACITY: Ceremonies & receptions up to 150 guests and 200 guests for an evening reception.

FACILITIES: Set in its own private valley, the medieval manor house at Owlpen is described as one of the jewels of the Cotswolds. We offer weddings in our oak-framed Cyder House restaurant and in the landscaped gardens, as well as civil ceremonies in the manor house. The 200-acre Owlpen estate also has nine beautifully-designed holiday cottages sleeping up to 40, allowing you to enjoy exclusive use of the estate for the duration of your stay.

FACILITIES: The Kingscote Barn is a Cotswold Stone Barn which has been sympathetically restored to the highest possible standards nestled away in its own secret valley. The warm neutral décor allows you to decorate the barn with your own individual style and ideas. Exposed oak beams and soft lighting add to the romantic ambiance of this magical venue. Luxury onsite accommodation.

©LW

DO PEOPLE KNOW YOU’RE A LICENSED VENUE?

WATERMiLL AT PRiSTON MiLL Priston Mill, Bath, BA2 9EQ T: 01225 423894 E: info@pristonmill.co.uk W: www.pristonmill.co.uk

To advertise your venue in the next issue of

CAPACiTy: ceremonies & Receptions up to 90 guests & 130 in the evening

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FACiLiTiES: The picturesque gardens of the Watermill make a beautiful setting for drinks receptions and outdoor ceremonies. inside there is a rustic charm with themed lighting, hessian hangings and an old iron waterwheel rumbling in the background, as it has done for centuries. yet inside you’ll also find cosy contemporary furnishings, a snug, smart bar and a large airy room with wooden beams and stone arches that’s perfect for indoor ceremonies and receptions.

call Jacqui Lewis on

0117 934 3136

©LW

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PHOTO GALLERY

PHOTO GALLERY

Andrew Limb Photography Contact Andrew Limb Telephone 07890 319241 Email andrewlimbphotography@gmail.com Website www.andrewlimbphotography.com

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PHOTO GALLERY

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PHOTO GALLERY

Emily Rose Photography Contact Emily Hamilton Telephone 07912 612124 Email emilyrosehamilton@icloud.com Website www.emilyrosephotography.co.uk

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PHOTO GALLERY

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CAPTURE THE MOMENT

PHOTOGRAPHY: BEN SIMMONDS PHOTOGRAPHY

This is our space for showcasing people’s favourite wedding photos. Not necessarily the professional shots or the usual images seen in magazines – maybe not even of the happy couple – but the photos that sum up what made a wedding day so special. Michelle El-Din from Taunton selects one from her wedding album.

Deer Park, Honiton

Back to nature Would you like to share your favourite wedding photo with us? Email westweddings@b-nm. co.uk with a high res (over 1MB) photo and a few lines explaining why it means so much to you, and you could be featured in a future issue! 82

“This is my favourite photo because it shows the ‘back to nature’ feel of our wedding reception. We are both outdoorsy people and enjoy being in the countryside, and this photo shows our love for each other with a wonderful rustic backdrop.” Weddings WEST


NEWS

Get yourself noticed by the Bride-to-be!

Call Jacqui Lewis on

0117 934 3136

to advertise in the next issue of West Weddings magazine 83

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NEWS

Weddings at Bowood Getting hitched this year?

Enjoy our special package prices from £98* on selected Saturdays in 2017. Get in touch for a private visit and experience the magic of Bowood. Call us on 01249 823887, visit us online at www.bowood.org/weddings *subject to minimum spend or email weddings@bowood.org quoting ‘WestWeddings’.

Wedding Fayre Sunday 19th February

Photography: Peter Smart Photography

There’s more to

Beautiful Bowood than meets the eye!

HOTEL • GOLF • SPA • WEDDINGS • EVENTS • RESTAURANTS • HOUSE & GARDENS

Bowood Hotel, Spa and Golf Resort Derry Hill, Calne, Wiltshire, SN11 9PQ

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www.bowood.org

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West Weddings Spring 2017  
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