Tiaras For A Queen!

In honour of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, I couldn’t resist shining a spotlight on one of the most girliest, yet regal, of hair accessories; the tiara. Any bride planning a vintage themed wedding should give serious thought to adding an opulent antique tiara to her get-up. After all, your wedding is effectively the time when you become Queen for a day; all eyes are on you, you’re the centre of attention and the focus of all your subjects (ok, we’ll go back to calling them ‘guests’ but you have to admit, the thought of them becoming your subjects for the day definitely enthralls…).

For the truly extravagant, check out Etsy for jewelled tiaras dating as far back as the 1800s. They’re not cheap, but they’re certainly breathtaking – and you’d easily check off the ‘old’ or even ‘something blue’ from your list of wedding day traditions.

The crown tiara below – yep, it’s actually called a ‘crown’ – is a French brass and gilt creation from the late 1800s. At £552.06, it’s a tad pricey, but a far better investment than a pair of designer shoes or a dress you’ll only wear once:

If that’s too colourful – and you don’t mind breaking the bank – the superb tiara below costs over £4,000. It’s a rare French crown (there’s that delicious word again) boasting an ornate, filigree design with mercury glass balls nestled in beautifully crafted flower petals. It’s more than an investment – it’s a bonafide work of art. Originally found in an ancient church, it would have once graced the head of a Madonna or Saint – and for a high price, it could adorn your very own temple. The seller states that it’s in pristine condition, but in case you still have doubts, you’ll be reassured to know that this crown was featured on a recent TV show in the USA, where experts confirmed the hefty valuation – it truly is worth every penny:

If your budget won’t stretch to an actual antique crown, dump your future hubby for a richer prospect. Kidding! All is not lost… you don’t need bags of money to look like a Queen on your big day. The 1930s were big on sparkly hair combs; rhinestone designs that sparkle like diamonds under the light. Ebay, Etsy and charity shops are great places to pick up some of these wonderful alternatives – I own several for the sheer beauty of them, not even for a wedding day! Here’s one currently on Etsy, which looks like a mini-tiara, priced for under £65:

It’s eye-poppingly pretty and would look beautiful nestled in front of a simple hair bun or any bridal hair style with some height. It’s definitely time to channel your inner Royalty and wear your tiara with pride; you are the Queen of the ball on your big day – and don’t you dare let anyone forget it!

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TK Maxx – Latest Bridal Shoes

I was in TK Maxx again this week and spotted a few new bridal shoes adorning their shelves.

This vintage-styled pair from Rocket Dog look like they’re made from Silk and have a medium high heel:

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The designer pair along the shelf – from Filippa Scott – weren’t half bad either, looking elegant and comfortable:

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Too plain? Fear not. Check out these blinged out high heels that were also on the shelf:

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With prices ranging from £19.99 to £29.99, these shoes won’t break the bank yet promise to add some style to your all-important walk down the aisle!

Vintage Themed Wedding Cakes… From The High Street!

You’re trotting up your local high street, heading towards your local supermarket to do your usual weekly shop. Your trying to remember your shopping list. You can’t. You’re too busy thinking about all the exciting things you still need to do to arrange your dream wedding. You’ve got a venue, your dress, agreed a colour scheme… but what about the all-important cake? Well, if you keep heading towards your local supermarket you’ll be on the right track; many have an amazing array of gorgeous wedding cakes to order!

I’ve spotted these beautiful, vintage themed cakes from Waitrose, which would look perfect at your big day if you’re looking to add some easy elegance to the event. Marks & Spencers have a decent range too but for some stylish old school opulence, I think Waitrose takes the cake 😉

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Art(ful) Hair Deco-Ration…

Check out this ART(ful) hair DECO-ration which is both glamorous and stylish, despite being older than your Nan!

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The vintage aluminum and rhinestone 1920s Art Deco comb is now on sale for just over £26 on Etsy. Think that’s too pricey? Have you seen the extortionate prices on the high-street for mass-produced accessories? Nowadays, £26 can’t even get you a decent necklace and earrings set, yet you can pick up this fantastic antique as a timeless keepsake and fantastic investment.

Picks of The Week – Vintage Wedding Glamour

Check out this show-stopping gown from the 1950s… perfect for a retro themed wedding or special occasion:

With its gold brocade, sweetheart bodice and a wide, champagne chiffon skirt, this dress will give you a beautiful Marilyn Monroe shape without the need to spend hours in the gym. Priced at $380 US dollars, it’s a steal for this mint vintage gown.

Even sweeter is this beautiful antique-styled wedding cake from Little Venice Cake Company:

It’s their ‘Baroque’ cake, which has drawn on Faberge in Russia for inspiration so expect superb hand-piping and ornate detail. Quality comes at a price (three tier 3”, 5”, 7” & 9” extra deep serves 100, for £1,000) – but it’s well worth spending because even celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey apparently finds his mouth watering at the Little Venice Cake Company’s yummy creations – wow!

A 1940s Cure For The …

To say I’ve had a bad week doesn’t even begin to describe it. It has been upsetting, emotional and truly frightening. Though feeling good right now isn’t coming naturally, I still need to try. It’s important to have something to cure at least part of the blues… or to occupy my mind long enough to at least forget about them for a portion of the night.

I took to trawling the web to immerse myself in my favourite hobby; antique & vintage. Vintage beads, vintage gowns, antique jewellery – I love anything from a bygone era where everyone’s problems were easily concealed behind a vaneer of glitz and glamour. I wish my life was a glitzy postcard right now. Sadly, it’s not, but sometimes it’s the little things which really help…

I happened upon this show-stopping 1940s wedding gown on Etsy – a welcome pick-me-up to take my mind off things. When I gaze upon its beauty I feel a sense of warmth and hope. There is beauty in the world. There is beauty in our endeavours and achievements as human beings. There is beauty in the love we can find in our own lifetimes.

We may never know the background of the bride who wore this gown, but I hope that hers was a happy story, unfolded throughout a life-long marriage filled with love. The beauty of her life continues through this gown. It has endured for 70 years; a lifetime. It has carried with it the memories of a deep love which was celebrated and marked by marriage. Should you chose to buy it and let it share in your own experience of love, perhaps it will endure for another 70 years and bring warmth and wonder for many more brides in the years to come:

1940s Bridal Glamour... Priceless

 

I love the collar and clinched waist

 

Wow your wedding guests from the back as well as the front

The bow draws attention to your best asset

It has a collar to draw attention to your face, a lace waist to draw the eye down and a beautiful bow at the back to amaze the wedding guests during your vows. If only my life was as perfect as this dress. Sigh.

This Week’s Top Picks – Vintage Wedding Must-Haves

Summer’s here and the wedding season is in full swing. Couples tie the knot under the sun’s watchful gaze, radiating their own warmth as they say their sacred vows. Tear-filled eyes shine with the reflection of love and joy as boyfriend and girlfriend finally become man and wife. At last.

The only thing that could make the day more special is knowing that your wedding includes at least one spectacular, vintage masterpiece that has a glorious history of long-ago love. Here are my favourite pick of the weeks, recreating the magic of by-gone eras that were famous for not only their splendour but also for their wonderfully unashamed romance and whimsy:

The beautiful silk dress below is now on sale for $300 dollars on Etsy.com:

Lovely Vintage Silk

Check out the wonderful detail on the bodice:

Detailed embroidery and beadwork to catch the light

And the button-up back gives a sexy and stylish finish to ensure you look always spectacular, even from from back to front!

Go back in time with vintage button loops

It’s not all about your wedding day though… don’t forget the wedding night (as if you could!). Believe it or not, you could introduce some vintage glamour into your first night as man and wife. Before you start gagging at the thought of using something already used on on your wedding night, take a peep at the luscious 1950s boudoir slippers below… guaranteed to turn you into a sexy siren in the bedroom, whether you team them with sexy underwear, or decide to showcase them alone 😉

Buffing yourself in your boudoir? 'Go buff' more like, by wearing these & nothing else!

Imagine kicking these off in front of your brand new hubby… but go easy, they’re too beautiful to rough up… even if it is your honeymoon!

Slipping into things on your wedding night...

At $40, these boudoir slippers are a wedding gift you can afford to give yourself, or cheekily persuade your maid of honour to buy for you. Afterall, that’s what bridal showers are for 🙂

Becoming someone’s ‘Old Lady’? Do it old school then…

Old Lady. No, not a woman who is mature in years. I’m talking ‘Old Lady’ to a man. Yes, I’m talking about a wife.

If you’re ready to tie the knot, forget about making it a modern affair. True glamour is old school glamour. Not convinced? Check these out before you make a final decision:

THE PRINCESS BRIDE VINTAGE 1950S SILK DUPIONI AND LACE WEDDING DRESS

1950s Classic Glamour

This lovely, 1950s gown with lace cutouts and a tulle and satin underskirt is now for sale on Etsy for a mere $350. Teamed with a simple bouquet of roses and a simple pair of heels, you’ll be the belle of the ball on your big day if you waltz down the aisle in this stunning dress.

The beautiful shoes below are from the late 1940s (c. 1947) and are simply stunning. More importantly, they’re multi-functional. Unlike many wedding shoes, they don’t have to spend the rest of their years hidden in an old box or buried in a wardrobe – team these with a glitzy dress for a night on the town and they’ll prove a fantastic investment. With a price tag of $25, they’re a welcome money saver because, let’s face it, getting married isn’t cheap!

Dance the night away in these 1940s heels!

If you’re having a summer wedding and looking for a unique sleeveless gown, I reckon this 1960s champagne and pearl number might turn your head:

You always need champagne on your big day!

If lace and tulle or pearls and sequins aren’t your thing, you can wear this simple yet elegant gown as it is, or have it customized with your favourite beads to add a light touch of sparkle:

Elegant '60s chic

For only $30, it might as well be given away… it’s not often you pick up your wedding dress for this tiny price!

Affordable, beautiful and environmentally friendly too, vintage is the way of the future, not just the past!

Gorgeous Vintage Jewellery – FOR SALE ONLINE

I love vintage jewellery and accessories. Whenever I see a second hand ring or brooch, I find myself wondering and speculating about the stories behind each unique item. I imagine the loving couples who must have shared intimate moments of joy when picking out their wedding rings, or a weepy daughter who must have been overcome with emotion to learn that her mother or grandmother had bequeathed a treasured keepsake. Whatever their stories, there’s no denying that vintage jewellery is far more beautiful and ornate in comparison to today’s mass-market offerings. Here are my favourite finds for this week, selected because they are simple enough to wear in this modern age without looking too kitsch or dated.

This 1940s ring set boasts a stunning diamond engagement band. This kind of beauty – and history – doesn’t come cheap so the price tag of $800 initially seems on the high side but when you stop to think that you get two rings for that price, it’s not half as much as you would expect to pay for separate engagement and wedding bands…

1940s wedding & engagement ring set

Check out this gorgeous, sparkly 1950s goldtone ribbon brooch currently on Ebay. It’s only £11.90 so it won’t break the bank but will certainly pack a punch on any coat, top, scarf or blouse:

1950s Ribbon Brooch

This lovely rhinestone hair comb would be perfect for a vintage-style bride on her big day. Priced at just $9 (around £5.50), it’s an absolute steal!

Vintage Rhinestone Hair Comb

I’m in love with this beautiful, elegent Van Dell brooch from the 1960s. It’s priced $26, so a UK buyer can snap this up for around £16. A bit expensive, I know, but well worth it for a timeless piece of jewellery:

Van Dell Ivory Flower Brooch with 12k Gold Filled Leaves

Vintage Weddings – More Top Picks From Etsy.com

Sequined Evening Gown For Sale on Etsy.com

I did a double-take when I saw this Dynasty-esque sequined evening gown; haven’t seen anything this extravagant hit the market at such a cheap price in years ($325 – nearly half that price in UK pounds sterling!).

Vintage 1930s Wedding Gown

For those looking to burn a hole in their pocket, this vintage 1930s evening gown above screams Hollywood glamour. At $950, so it should!

Of course, having the perfect vintage dress for your big day would be nothing without the necessary bling to seal the deal. Check out this stunning vintage wedding ring set – perfect for a stylish bride who respects the environment through the purchase of second hand engagement and wedding bands:

Vintage Diamond Wedding Band Set

These are priced at just $450 dollars so a UK buyer would get this for just over half the cost, thanks to the great exchange rate at the moment.