it’s elementary, my dear teapot!

We do love a good tea pot on a wedding gift list. Not only is a good one a work of art, but you’ll undoubtedly get served a lovely cup of tea from it (hopefully with cake!) by your newly-wed friends at some point in the future. Something pretty AND practical makes the best gift in our eyes.

So we were very impressed to see Sherlock Holmes using none other than Ali Miller’s Map Tea Pot on Sunday night, and we are pleased to say that Ali has been inundated with orders ever since! Isn’t Sherlock just the best; solving mysteries alongside shopping dilemmas.

Read more about this wonderful incident, and the concept of shopping whilst watching TV, on the Guardian website.

 

cover me pretty

To me (quite controversially?) chair covers are a bit like marmite. In some wedding venues they are completely necessary and when done well can conjure up an air of luxury for your big day. However, when taken too far they can make your styling look dated and in some cases as if there has been an unwanted explosion of organza that will definitely attract the attention of guests but, dare I say it, in the wrong way.

My inspiration for this post came from a company called Marry This, based in the US. I receive their emails and have downloaded a few of their very cool and very free styling guides. The beautiful rich purple and burnt orange image above was taken from one such styling guide and it inspired me to scour our site for cool and unique decorative touches that would glam up the usually very conventional and practical object that is a chair, and turn said chair into a little work of art.

A key consideration when decorating chairs is the comfort of your guests. The last thing you want is for your guests to sit down to the wedding breakfast feeling stifled or uncomfortable due to the contraptions (which may be very beautiful) attached to their chairs. Decorating your chairs is just another area of styling to embrace and a way to bring your theme for the day to life. If the space at your reception venue is fairly simple and minimalist, chair decoration is a great way to inject some colour into your styling and to get a bit creative. You could even hang your place names on the chairs themselves, instead of having printed table cards. Your chairs don’t have to be swathed in layered fabrics; why not add small floral arrangements, bunting or paper chains – either pre-bought or made by your own fair hands for a touch of DIY wedding love.

For something a bit different from a traditional satin chair sash, mix colours, textures and shapes and even vary the decorative touches from table to table to add a cool, shabby chic touch or to bring in a number of colour combinations. A great way to save on cost is to alternate decorations and limit them to every other chair or to keep it really simple by tying a bow of your favourite ribbon onto each seat. You can find details of all the featured products and images below…

Are you planning to have chair covers? Or will you be trying out some original decorative touches on your chairs?

Tying pretty place names to your chairs is a bit different and a great way to add a touch of DIY charm. This pretty yet practical touch will make them stand out more than if they were lying flat on the table.

Set Of Six Name Slates

100 Small Gift Labels

Five Wooden Hearts For Guest Names

Flower garlands are great value as they are strung with wire and can be cut into smaller pieces and tied to chairs. This cuts down on expense not to mention the added pressure and logistics of having fresh flower arrangements.

Antique Pink Rose Garland

Paper Flower Garland

Ribbon and hanging decorations or a combination of the two are a great way to decorate and can be pre-bought to fit a multitude of wedding colour schemes and styles.

Spotty Dotty Grosgrain Ribbon

Ribbon Pattern Collection

Bunting Cotton Ribbon

Bride and Groom Signs

Personalised Bunting

Buttons and Bells Heart

Vintage Rose Hanging Heart

French Bonheur Hanging Heart

Nostalgic Paper Streamers

Nostalgic Paper Ball Decorations

Purple and Orange style chair decorations taken from this Marry This feature.

 

aisle remember

This morning the weddings team were talking about the moment when you (as a bride or bridesmaid) are standing waiting for your cue to walk down the aisle and the crazy range of emotions you feel.

I haven’t been a bridesmaid since I was little, but I can remember waiting at the entrance of the church at my uncle’s wedding and sensing the nervous/excited atmosphere overcoming everyone. In fact, I think I might have sensed it a little too strongly and consequently refused to walk down the aisle! Sorry Uncle Bill!

As a bride, this feeling is intensified by about 100 million (but hopefully most make it down the aisle!) I was saying to the team this morning that I honestly have never experienced anything like it. As we stood waiting for our cue, my sisters and I experienced every emotion from tears to the urge to burst out laughing (luckily my Dad managed to keep it together – if he’d been going too we definitely would have completely lost it).

There is so much love waiting in the room ahead of you that it really is almost too much to handle; it is so rare to have (nearly) all your favourite people from every stage of your life in one place. Not only that, but the person you plan to spend the rest of your life with is at the front waiting to tell the world that you are The One. The impact of that is really quite overwhelming in the most amazing way.

I know this isn’t new advice – everyone tells you to try to remember every minute of your wedding day – but my tip to all of the brides-to-be out there is to really lap up the moments when you are waiting to walk down the aisle. They are so fleeting, so take in all the minute details – the look on everyone’s faces, the smell of your bouquet, the squeeze of your Dad’s arm – and try to store them away in your mind forever. Please forgive me for the soppiness, but these really are some of the most important memories you’ll ever have from your wedding day.

Featured product: Small Wedding Arrow Sign by This Is Pretty

 

unique wedding thank you gifts – in the sale

Our winter sale ends midnight January 15. That’s this Sunday. With only four days remaining, make sure you treat yourself and your lovely wedding party to some discounted goodies. There’s an array of individually personalised gifts in the sale that would be perfect for thanking your bridesmaids and groomsmen for all their help during your wedding planning. With the prices lower than usual it’s a great opportunity to purchase something unique for each of your friends that they’ll truly cherish.

best man and groomsmen

- The ‘Top Bloke’ Greetings Card by My Love Lane is a bold thank you card that’s blank inside for you to personalise with a funny joke or anecdote.

- These Solid Silver F1 Cufflinks by Me and My Car are ideal for any of your car enthusiast friends. Beautifully detailed and high quality, they’ll be worn time and time again.

- I love the Personalised Initial Cufflinks by Fingerprints in green. Hand-crafted from polymer clay and available in a varity of colours, they make an ideal gift for your groomsmen or the father of the bride.

- The Personalised Bottle Stopper by the letteroom is an original present for any wine connoisseurs amongst your friends.

- Or the Gear Stick Bottle Stop by Me and My Car is a fun alternative. Wrap it up with a bottle of their favourite wine and you’ve got a perfect gift they’re sure to enjoy.

- Express how thankful you are for your best man’s efforts by giving him a Best Man Personalised Wall Art by Disco Butterfly. With both of your names it’ll make for a lasting moment of his support on your big day.

- For the younger ones in your wedding party the Print Personalised Children’s Kit Bag by 3 Blonde Bears is great for filling with fun games and tasty treats.

- The Personalised Up-Cycled LP Vinyl Record Clock by Ellie Ellie would make a great gift for music lovers. Choose a record that means something to you both for that extra personal touch.

maid of honour and bridesmaids

- This gorgeously designed PiP Studio Fantasy Notebook by Fifty One Percent would make a lovely gift for your bridesmaids. Include a couple of fun photos and a thank you note inside to get their creative juices flowing.

- The Personalised Silver And Enamel Dome Ring by Nicola Crawford is hand-crafted and made to size in a selection of colours.

- Let your bridesmaids know how valuable they’ve been throughout the wedding planning stages with this Porcelain Superstar Magnet by Jo Heckett.

- These Dramatic Damasc Silver Heart Earrings by Green River Studio are beautifully handmade and finished, and would make a lovely gift for your maid of honour.

- Put your graditude in writing with a Personalised ‘Thank You Bridesmaid’ Card by Violet Pickles. Their name will be on the front leaving the inside for you to fill.

- I adore the Alphabet Cup And Saucer by leaf. Put a couple of chocolates or biscuits inside to make it a really tasty treat for anyone who loves a cup of tea.

- The Personalised Dancing Queen Purse by Seabright Designs makes a perfect gift for a flower girl: you can choose the hair colour and have their own name embroidered on the front.

- These Keep Calm And Other Pocket Mirrors by Wue offer a quirky gift idea for your female friends. With a selection of designs to pick from you can give your bridesmaids a phrase that totally suits them.

To see some more gorgeous sale items visit our Facebook page and view our Wedding Wednesday album collection, full of wedding guest inspiration. Or have a read of Nell’s blog post on wedding sale fashion for stunning outfit ideas.

Shop the whole winter sale collection HERE.

 

the wedding fashion sale

With wedding season fast approaching it’s got us thinking about the fashion dilemmas you face as a bride or as a wedding guest. Today, in this beautiful fashion special, we have catered for brides, grooms, wedding guests, children and bridesmaids and the best thing? Everything has up to 50% off in our winter sale! The sale doesn’t just cover fashion but wedding styling (as Fran showed in this beautiful post last week), wedding gifts, and an array of other unique items from the site, so take a look at the full sale HERE.

Bridal fashion

The adorable Silver Lucky Knot Necklace is delicate, a good luck charm and a lovely little nod to tying the knot. At £12 it’s a great way to do your something new and save a little on your wedding budget too. I also love the Simplicity Pearl Gift Set and the Esther Vintage Comb. The use of classically beautiful pearls makes each piece versatile.

Bridesmaid fashion

In the pastel trio, we have the Fritillary Dress, Archipel Dress and the Alexia Lace Dress. All three styles, though quite different, are each made in a light versatile tone, giving you the option to mix and match and dress them up and down as you desire.

The darker looks are slightly less conventional colour choices for bridesmaid fashion but I think you’ll agree both the Multiway Knee Length Dress and Multiway Bandeau Dress, styles are both stunning. Whatsmore, being multiway dresses you can choose which style you would like for each maid, meaning all your bridesmaids can have the same dress but in a style that flatters them. The featured black stone accessories are great value, the Onyx Swing Earrings, Chunky Ribbon Bead Necklace and the Patsy Jet Black Jewel Ring, would make a funky piece de resistance to both looks.

Female guest occasion wear

Monochrome

This first monochrome look is demure and would be perfect for a stylish Mother of the Bride – just add a tailored blazer. The Patent Court Shoes, In-style Skirt and Innocent Top are all by Pebble Boutique and all have 25% of their original prices.

Classic navy

You can’t go wrong with the classic combination of navy and cream at a spring or summer wedding. Gold or natural beaded accessories and heeled strappy sandals would add a beautiful finishing touch to the Swallow Dress, Mona Cardigan and the Darcy Navy Satin Clutch.

Pretty in purple

This ultra-stylish outfit would look wonderful with a deep purple pashmina wrap, for during the ceremony, but lend itself exceptionally well to the dancefloor too! Get the look yourself by combining the Minnie Dress, the Enamel Bow Bracelet and Bella Platform Plum Court Shoes.

For the gentlemen

Though not my main area of expertise, I have pulled together some super-stylish men’s occasion wear and accessories, with my pick including the Lime Chocolate Silk Tie, the very daper Pure Cashmere Scarf and the Monogrammed Etched Cufflinks. My favourite piece has to be the Mens Stag T-shirt by Retro Without A Cause, the perfect accessory for you know what!

the little ones

Lest we forget the little people who need to look as-cute-as-can-be at special occasions as the rest of us! For the lovely little ladies: the Julia Coat over the top of the Blue and Red Rose Dress would look adorable. For the little boys, Bamboo Baby have a gorgeous collection of clothing and my picks include the Unisex Chunky Kids Bamboo Jumper and the Boys Organic Cotton Polka Dot Shirt.

Shop the whole winter sale collection HERE

 

make it metallic

The fashion trend for a splash of the metallic shows no sign of going away anytime soon and continues to evolve, develop and take on new and edgier forms as the seasons pass, from the use of shiny crepe materials to the undeniable current taste for all things sequinned and embellished. In this sense you can easily incorporate a sprinkling of metallic to your own wedding styling and that of your bridesmaids. The options are endless from a clutch bag, statement necklace and other pieces of jewellery or shoes – you can be as daring or demure as you choose.

Touches of the metallic can easily transcend throughout the styling of your day and again provides you with the freedom to embrace it as much as you want – from smaller delicate decorative touches, to making it the main theme for the day. Silver, gold, bronze or a combination; the world is your metallic inspired oyster.

Trends can often be something we consider ever-changing, ‘faddy ‘ and perhaps something we think we may even come to regret indulging in, in years to come (think neon leg warmers). But the trend for metallic tones is definitely not an example of the more dispensible type of trend we frequently see with cheaper fashion today. The reason why it lends itself so well to wedding styling is that it is versatile and you can use metallic pieces and elements to quite different effects.

Take table decorations as an example, using a scattering of zinc Galvanised Jugs for your table floral arrangements would add something special to a vintage inspired or country chic inspired day. However a piece such as the Mercury Glass Conical Vase oozes an air of the contemporary, thoroughly simple and stylish. Different still, the use of the Aged Metal Birdcage filled with flowers can lend itself to a number of wedding styling scenarios, as the main thing is that it’s an interesting object being used differently to it’s traditional purpose and the metallic quality makes it even more intriguing and a style statement in itself.

Make the trend for metallic your own and above all, make it marvellous!

style your day

Galvanised Jugs,
Hanging Tin Heart,
Leather Journals,
Aged Metal Birdcage,
Cut-work Metal Votive Holder,
Orante Gold Frame Memo Holder,
Set of Three Gold Photo Frames,
Vintage Metal Bottle Holder,
Stemmed Antique Silver Glass Tealight Holders,
Five Personalised Leather Bow Gift Tags,
Personalised Aluminium Letters,
Six Luxury Collection Cupcakes,
Bud Vase,
Pair of Frosted Candlesticks.

style you

Caramel Clutch in Metallic Leather,
Vintage 1930′s Beaded Clasp Purse,
Gold Leather Bow Brooch,
Tilly Satin T-bar Peep Toe Shoes,
Zara Bridal Hairband.

 

personalise your ceremony

I thought it might be quite interesting to have a post on types of wedding ceremony, as I realised recently that although I had an inkling, I really had no idea what a humanist ceremony actually was. Must research, I told myself.

And in times this, we, the weddings team, turn to Sophie’s book; Your Wedding Your Way (which Louise holds true was the most useful resource when planning her big day). On page 95, Sophie discusses types of ceremony, and although I won’t go into all the detail, here are some basics of what you might want to know.

Traditional ceremonies include a civil ceremony, Church of England and Church of Wales, traditional church blessing, Roman catholic church, Non conformist churches, Jewish and Asian (apologies if any have been missed here!). You probably already knew about most of these.

The alternative, personal or other non legal ceremonies are quite intriguing. Most are not legally recognised, but could follow a civil ceremony to then give you a bit more freedom to plan how you would like a longer ceremony to play out. For instance, you can have the ceremony at whatever time you want, and in a field if you fancy. So, although you might have to dedicate some more time to ceremonies during the day, you can do it the way you want. Or, to make the day less hectic, you could have your civil ceremony a few weeks earlier, and dedicate your actual wedding day, with a larger group of your friends and family, to a more unusual ceremony!

Buddhist

Buddhist ceremonies are only very occasionally legally recognised, and to be legal the wedding must be conducted at a temple licensed for marriages, or for a Buddhist blessing to follow a civil ceremony. Buddhist ceremonies are appealing to couples because they can be a different assembly of various rituals, and the couple are not bound by specific rules, only a respect for Buddhist beliefs.

Humanist

Not legally recognised either, so also often follows a registry office ceremony. The Oxford dictionary sum up Humanism as being ‘a rationalistic outlook or system of thought attaching the prime importance to human rather than divine or supernatural views’. A humanist ceremony allows you to make the vows more your own, without being tied to a religion – you can decide the words, the length of time you want the ceremony to be and how many people you want to be there (often not an option at a registry office). The more personal, less restrictive humanist ceremony can be seamlessly made part of the whole ceremony. There is more information to be found on the Humanist Association website, of which you do not have to a member to choose a Humanist ceremony at your wedding.

Handfasting

Adapted from pagan marriages throughout history and now adopted for modern use by a New Age following, Handfasting is an ancient form of marriage or betrothal ceremony that may include the exchange of rings, vows, prayers and handfasting itself: the hands are tied together with gold, silver and green cords, to symbolise the union, then untied to show that they remain together of their own free will. If you want to read more, this site is quite useful.

Vow-exchanging or Non-denominational, Independent religious ceremony

The first is more often secular, but can still involve religion if you wish, and the second is much more based on religion, but both of these ceremony options in short involve the couple preparing their own ceremony. Vow-exchanging is completely based on the couples interpretation of marriage, but the independent religious ceremony would still need to follow the ideals and principles at stake of their religion, which usually means being loosely based around the tradition of aisle, vows, prayers and readings, and is prepared with an independent minister, outside of any denominational or established procedure or expectation. Neither is legally recognised, meaning both need to follow a civil ceremony.

Getting married abroad

In countries where the power to marry is vested solely in the minister (and not in the location), a legal marriage can be anywhere that she/he is prepared to go. But if you plan to go overseas, ensure you follow the regulations of the country where you marry, to be confident it is all valid when you return home. The British Consul in your chosen place of marriage should be able to provide this, or from that country’s embassy in the UK). Some countries – like the US and Greece – also have local or regional laws, so be sure to double check!

It’s your ceremony, and what the wedding day centres around, so it’s almost certainly worth taking the time to think about this bit carefully and not to feel that you must follow any expected path. You want to feel totally comfortable with your words, and not rushed at all when you speak them, so giving enough thought behind your decisions here will make the wedding day more relaxing and meaningful.

‘Your Wedding, Your Way’ by Sophie Cornish – not in print anymore but you might be able to get a sneaky copy from Amazon.

Personalised Bride and Groom £45 by Laura Long

We’ve researched the above, but we are no experts – if anything has changed from the information provided, please feel free to comment!

 

The Alternative Wedding Fair

As big believers in having your wedding, your way, we’re delighted that The Alternative Wedding Fair is coming to London for the first time on the 22 January!

Designed to cater to couples who want to plan a wedding that reflects their true style and personalities, The Alternative Wedding Fair promises to inspire you to create the most memorable of wedding days.

The fair is the brainchild of the lovely Heidi Thompson, who used to be a wedding planner specialising in creating one-off weddings that both the couple themselves and guests can really enjoy; so she knows her stuff!

All exhibitors at the show are carefully selected to ensure that they provide a breath of fresh air to couples who are looking for that special something, that stands out from the rest, for their wedding day.

And if that wasn’t enough, Heidi also strongly believes in planning a wedding that doesn’t put an enormous strain on the bank balance. In her own words: ‘I have always specialised in saving people money during the course of their wedding planning process. I want to make sure that couples can inject some fun into their wedding without breaking the bank and the selection of exhibitors will reflect this.’

Exhibitors will include unique stationery designers, fun and quirky photographers, alternative wedding dress designers and many more.

As well as the huge array of unique suppliers, there will be an Alternative Wedding Fashion Show at 1pm, set to a live band, and there will also be free canapés and drinks to enjoy!

The Alternative Wedding Fair takes place on 22 January 2012 at 11am-4pm at Piccadilly Institute in London. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.thealternativeweddingfair.com

 

wedding styling finds in our super sale

Our winter sale is now in full swing with hundreds of products reduced in price for you to pick from. So if you’re planning your wedding on a tight budget you won’t want to miss out on these pieces to style your day. There’s beautiful big day décor, delicate bridal accessories, personalised favours and even wedding cakes – you will be able to keep to your budget after all!

Here’s a collection of my favourite wedding decorations and jewellery in pretty pastels and silver; perfect for creating your dream day.

accessories:

Ciara Flower Grips and Pink Rose Earrings by Divine Destiny

Single Drop Pink Champagne Earrings by Cinderela B Jewellery

Ruffle Pumps by Kiki’s

Wedding Purse In Linen Rose by Through the Cottage Door

Freshwater Pearl Stud Earrings by Lilac Coast

Personalised Groom Cufflinks by Fingerprints

decorations:

Cream Sola Rose Heart, Pack Of 20 Sola Shell Rose Decorations, Sola Rose Garland Three Metre by Yatris Home and Gift

Entwined Initials Favour by Mollie Mae Handcrafted Designs

Modern Amelie designer name cards/numbers by Katie Sue

Set Of Six Etched Glass Votive Holders by Francesca & Florence

Personalised ‘Leah’ Wedding Guest Book by Dreams to Reality Design Ltd

Willow Double Heart Wreath by The Country Cottage Shop

Two Tier Chocolate Wedding Cake by Cocoa-Cabana

Vintage Style LOVE Sign by Delightful Living

Paper Love Heart Bunting by Biba’s Tea Party

To see some more gorgeous sale items go to our Facebook page and view our Wedding Wednesday album collection, full of wedding styling inspiration. Happy shopping x

 

New Year DIY resolutions – made pretty and easy!

In December we created a Facebook collection of some of our favourite DIY styling products and ideas and items that have a touch of homemade charm about them (images included above).

The trend for doing it yourself shows no sign of going away anytime soon; whether it be the bleak financial climate influencing certain elements of planning or the nature of modern brides – who are conscious about the environment, want to do things differently and getting creative and ‘hands on’ with their day. Whatever the reason, we love that DIY is here to stay! And, if you’re getting married in the coming spring or summer, now (brimming with January resolutions and bouncing with positivity and hope for 2012) is the perfect time to get inspired, make your styling decisions and get making!

Stamps for ‘save the dates’ and invitations are a small initial investment that go a long way. luggage tags can be bought plain and then decorated by a crafty touch or bought ready-embellished for you to use as unique place names. Decorative jars and sweet bags can be filled with penny sweets for a pricelessly stylish and tasty favour that your guests will thank you for. Ribbon can be used to decorate favours, items on tables, thank you gifts and really help string a styling theme together.

Paper chains have a wonderful homemade charm that can be bought or made by you at home, depending on whether you’re about doing DIY or just getting the DIY look. The same applies to quirky table plans, buy a rustic ready-made version or take inspiration and get the look yourself using tags and twine and an old frame, suitcase or birdcage?

To view the original collection click here. To join us for Wedding Wednesday every week on Facebook, ‘like’ the notonthehighstreet.com page. We also provide daily inspiration via Twitter, click here to follow us.

Get the look:

Personalised Save The Date Stamp by Billet Doux,
Personalised Wedding Invitation Stamp by Billet Doux,
Handmade Re-cycled Vintage Paperchain by Ellie Ellie,
Jam Making Printed Set by Beautiful Day,
Set Of Six Mini Glass Pumpkin Jars by Shrinking Violet,
Ribbon And Tape Assorted Designs by The Wedding of my Dreams,
Set Of Four French Style Glass Bottles by The Wedding of my Dreams,
Ribbon And Tag Set by Jane Means,
Recycled Luggage Tag Table Plan A2 by Artcadia,
Vintage Rubber Alphabet Stamps And Ink Pad by The Wedding of my Dreams,
Pack Of Eight Paper Boats by Life’s a Party!,
Striped Paper Straws by Pearl and Earl,
Paper Chain Selection by The Chic Country Home,
Mini Multi Colour Bunting by Yeyah,
Set Of Three Flower Stamps by Noolibird and the
Pack Of Five Button Name Place Hangers by Creative and Contemporary Handmade.