Etsy UK Brings A Little Magic To London

This weekend saw Etsy UK’s first ever wedding event in London – an interactive, vintage-themed exhibition for those looking for creative ideas for their big day.

Held at Gallery Soho, the intimate setting boasted two floors of gorgeous fashion, stationery, jewellery, home furnishings and craft workshops. There was something for everyone, from Hollywood-siren oppulence in the form of a show-stopping, sequin-covered, gold, vintage gown to the endearing charm of handmade cushions, adorable wedding cake toppers and button-decorated, pastel-coloured bouquets.

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For vintage lovers like myself, it was an intoxicating way to spend my Saturday morning, putting me in a joyful mood for the rest of the day.

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The downstairs showed off a range of wares from Etsy sellers and there was a free hair consultation and styling session for any girl wanting to see which vintage look would be the most flattering at her pending nuptials. Like a magpie, I found myself drawn to the sparkly antique hair pins and rhinestone combs being used to create the beautiful styles. Art deco hair accessories are definitely the most impressive but, let’s face it, if it gleams and sparkles, you can’t go wrong!

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The upper level of the gallery heaved with gushing future brides eager to try their hands at the craft workshops being offered by Parapluie Events. Armed with a fabulous free cocktail from St-Germain – a light, breezy concoction blending the French liqueur, Prosecco and club soda – I got to try my hand at making clay wedding favours and place settings as well as frilly, paper doily pom-poms to use as hanging decorations. The cackling heard from the photo booth provided by LookLook was testimony to how much fun was being had by all the guests.

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The entire session was a blast and I walked away with not just a renewed love for vintage but also the uplifting sense of accomplishment; showing my creations to family and friends triggered a gush of compliments and admiration. Not bad for a mere £5 entry fee!

Parapluie Events are definitely worth booking for hen-dos and parties – get all your bridesmaids to help craft your wedding favours and you’re not only quids-in, you’ve also managed to involve your nearest and dearest to help create the most special day of your life!

Hopefully, Etsy UK will repeat the event next year, perhaps with a few tweaks to help drive more revenue sales. That said, everyone at the event received a fantastic goody bag – which included a special code for 15% off buys on Etsy. Given the wonderful stuff we saw on display, I imagine many will go on to use the generous discount. Etsy UK deserves to do well from this first foray into events – it was awesome fun and the quality of handmade and vintage goods on display were genuinely breathtaking.

To see more pictures and news from the event, social media users can search for #etsywed on Twitter or check out the Facebook page for EtsyUK.

Wedding Bouquet Bauble Beauty

A few years ago, I went to a family wedding and was pleasantly surprised to see the bride ditch the traditional wedding bouquet in favour of a wedding ‘bauble’ (that’s what I’ve christened it but your florist may have a more accurate name). I can’t understand why more brides aren’t embracing the bauble on their big day. You don’t have to hold it all the way through the ceremony (as pictured); it can be fitted with a hanging loop.

I think the design in my photo is beautifully elegant but if you’d prefer more colour, the bauble would look equally stunning in flowers of bright pinks, yellows, purples or oranges. It’s a winner for younger flower girls, in my view. Imagine them walking up the aisle with a bauble clutched in hand. So cute! The hanging ribbons with beading or pearls are optional but I think they look magical. It’s nice to have the freedom to be a little whimsical with your flowers on your wedding day. The wedding bauble is modern, stylish, fun and simply gorgeous. Here’s the close up so you can decide for yourself:

 

Vintage Style Wedding Cakes – From Kitsch To Classy!

You all know that I adore anything vintage and bridal themed. I love looking at the different styles of vintage wedding gowns and wedding cakes. The detailing is usually splendid, casting a look at the skills of the old world experts who painstakingly crafted their goods to absolute perfection. Finding modern day versions gives me such joy because I love the thought of the best parts of yesterday being repeated tomorrow; what was great once can always be great again. Amen.

Today, I’ve been admiring the different styles of wedding cakes from two separate companies; Zoe Clark Cakes and Dunn’s Bakery. So many of their creations have caught my attention but here are some of my particular favourites:

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Zoe Clark’s Pink Vintage Lace Cake above is breathtaking. The icing looks intricate and pretty, creating the delicate lace effect which could match many a bridal gown in its simplicity and grace. In contrast, Dunn’s Bakery have the even more vintage looking Cameo Cake below, which could rival any Regency decorated wedding venues for a showstopper award! And if you’re lucky enough to serve your wedding meal on Wedgewood china, this cake is a must for you…

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For a more ‘girlie’ gloriousness, I love the Ivory Ruffle creation below, from Zoe Clark. She gets top marks for evoking my nostalgia for ’50s prom dresses! I desperately want to run my fingers through the ruffles like I would across a frilly prom skirt! Of course, that would completely destroy the stunning visual effect, but I suspect licking the icing from my hands afterwards would more than compensate 😉

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You’ll find yet more Hollywood glamour in Zoe Clark’s Bow & Brooch Cake, which is a favourite coupling amongst cake makers. It’s amazing what a bit of bling and ribbon can do to not only jazz up an iced cake but also give it that ever-beautiful vintage appeal:

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If 1950s ruffles aren’t your thing, and you think brooches are for grandmothers, there’s always the 1970s if you want brighter inspiration. ’70s wedding cakes were famous for their high tiers and colourful accessories – from edible flowers to vibrant ribbons. It may sound kitsch, but these cakes can still look stylish in today’s modern world. All it takes is a little imagination – and it looks like Dunn’s Bakery can probably find a perfect balance of colour and style to suit your tastes. Check out their Rosetrellis design below:

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Not for you? What about the regal looking Dunstan (pictured below) instead? Not as detailed as the Rosetrellis, you still get the impact of the separate tiers and a very eye-catching cake topper…

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If you’re veering back towards more ‘contemporary vintage’, Zoe Clark’s Broderie Lace Cake or Sweet Roses & Dots designs are both definitely worth a look-see:

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Alternatively, if they’re not quite vintage enough for you, but you still want something similar, there’s Dunn Bakery’s Cascade cake (below). With it’s pink roses and pipework icing, it may be the perfect compromise!

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Otherwise, it may be worth speaking to Zoe Clark about a more specific theme. I love what she’s created below – a dress inspired by a wedding gown design! This is her Caroline Castigliano Dress Inspired Cake and it’s beautiful…

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All this cake talk has made me hugry … it’s time to dig a gateau from the freezer or find a nice tea shop for a slice of Victoria Sponge. Yummy!

Gorgeous Bridal Shoes From £12.99!

You’ve got to love TK Maxx. I was strolling around my local store today when I happened upon a divine pair of platform, ivory bridal shoes from designer Pura Lopez. They were a snip at £39.99.

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However, as I’m not about to walk down the aisle, I could only leave them on the shelf as a welcome discovery for a bride-to-be.Bridal shoes often don’t receive any exposure, aside from the odd peek under a hem or a raised skirt to remove a garter. Even so, brides tend to give them a lot of thought; colour, style, shape, fit, open or closed toe, embellished or plain, white or coloured, heel height… and the all important price. The big bucks usually go on the dress, sometimes leaving very little for shoes and accessories. Enter TK Maxx, saviour of the bargain-hunting shopper.

Check out their current range of styles here – there’s a pair to suit everyone, whether you’re ’50s siren or a modern fashionista. Label lovers will rejoice at the likes of Just Cavalli and Badgley Mischka, on sale for a fraction of the original RRP (recommended retail price):

Badgley Mischka White Satin Bridal Shoes With Jewel Embellishment - only £119.99

 

Those less concerned with designer credentials can bag a pair of lovely heels for £12.99 from well known footwear line Lunar. You can also save over 80% on some gorgeous Fillipa Scott bridal shoes, like the ones below which are on sale for only £29.99!