Friday 30 September 2011

Ask a Bristol Wedding Planner

Bristol Wedding Planner, Stephanie Allison is on hand to answer any of your planning questions. If you have a question that you would like answered and published on Bristol Wedding News, please email us

Q. I have a Wedding Budget of around £10,000 and I'm worried how to afford everything for my Wedding. Where can I save money without making my Wedding seem cheap? Sarah from Brislington

A. Weddings are very expensive these days but that doesn't mean that you need a huge budget to have an amazing day. However with a budget of around £10,000 you may need to be careful where you spend. My first tip is to be very careful when choosing your venue as this will be your biggest expense. To make sure that your budget stretches you ideally don't want to pay more than £1500 to hire a venue. This doesn't mean that pricier venues are totally ruled out.

A lot of the large venues have cheaper rates for last minute availability, mid-week and out of season Weddings so you may have to rule out a Summer Saturday to get the right price. Village Halls can be a great option too as their hire prices are really competitive and you have free reign with catering and decorations.

Westbury on Trym Village Hall styled by the Little Wedding Helper
My final tip would be to use the talents of friends to keep your budget down. If a family member is a great baker ask them to make your cake or perhaps you have someone who can sing or play instruments during your ceremony. One word of warning though, don't scrimp on your evening entertainment as it makes such as difference to the Wedding atmosphere and always get the best photographer you can afford.

Steph is a Wedding Planner and owns How 2 I Do Wedding Planning.

Thursday 29 September 2011

Real Wedding at Berwick Lodge

Today Nicola from Nicola Jane Photography is sharing pictures of the Wedding of Melissa and Jon, who got married on the 23rd April this year.

Melissa & Jon were married at the beautiful Boutique Hotel, Berwick lodge on a glorious sunny spring afternoon.

The couple were married in the coach house, before heading back across to the main house and Marquee for drinks and the wedding breakfast.

The flowers were by Lisa Elliott Flowers, based in Clifton and Melissa had chosen hot pink gerberas for her bouquet and table decorations.

Thank you to Nicola for sharing these gorgeous pictures and many thanks to Melissa and Jon for sharing their special day with us. Congratulations to you both.

Wednesday 28 September 2011

Gorgeous Wedding Accessories at Bridezillas

Bridezillas is a new boutique specialising in gorgeous Wedding accessories that is coming to Keynsham very soon. In the mean time you can satisfy your cravings for all things pretty on the website that launched recently. There are so many lovely things on there from gorgeous shoes to stunning tiaras and more.

How about this vintage inspired Gracey headband from their own range called Abigail Grace and costing £65.00

                                                      Abigail Grace Design 1950'S Vintage Hairband - Gracey

The Julia headband looks amazing with it's delicate design at £70.00 and there is also a matching cuff bracelet available for £65.00


                                     Julia Cuff

How about some stunning shoes for your Wedding or even a party or special occassions. These sparkling Benjamin Roberts beauties called Charlize will be available to buy in the boutique only.


A Wedding umbrella or parasol is always a good idea to protect you from rain or scorching hot sun on your big day and you can't get muck prettier than this Abigail Lace one for £29.99.


Why not head over to Bridezillas website now to have a little browse and we'll keep you updated about the opening date for the Boutique.

Tuesday 27 September 2011

Trend Alert: Pretty in Pink

You really can't get much prettier or more girly than baby pink and if you like a touch of pink then we've got some gorgeous ideas for you. These pink vintage books and roses would make a fantastic room decoration or table centrepiece as show on Momma Ts Place.


This picture shows that you don't just need to stick to white table linen. The pink cloths shown below from Axioo beautifully complement the overall theme and the rows of pink blooms make a stunning statement.


A pink candy buffet can really complement your theme and this one from The Sweet Occasion is so pretty.


This blush floral centrepiece and pink glassware is a fantastically subtle way to add colour to your overall look and the combination of flowers in this display is amazing. The picture is from Style Me Pretty


How about a touch of pink in your cake and the pink roses and ruffles in the one below are divine. If you want some gorgeous cup cakes the I Do ones with pink frosting would complement any pink theme.



Cake Photo Credits Tumblr and Enchanted Dream Weddings

Monday 26 September 2011

Venue Spotlight: Goldney Hall

If you are looking for a historic venue for a Bristol Wedding, then a University may not immediately spring to mind but Goldney Hall, which forms part of the University of Bristol is full of hidden gems. Goldney Hall  was built in the 1720s and  remained a family home for over 230 years before passing to the University in the 60s.


It boasts an impressive orangery, original paneling and landscaped grounds full or grottos, follies, canals and monuments that make an amazing backdrop to your Wedding photography. Ceremonies for up to 40 take place during the University holidays in the Mahogany Parlour with its ornate fireplace and views over the gardens.

                          The tower and purple flowers in the gardens of Goldney Hall, Bristol

For reception of up to 150 people, the Orangery is a beautifull light filled space that overlooks the ornamental canal, tower and gardens. All catering is provided by Fosters Events who hold a long standing contract with Goldney Hall.

                             The wedding tables set up inside Goldney Hall conservatory

Visit the website to read the Wedding brochure here

Photo Credits ELC, Rosie Parsons

Friday 23 September 2011

5 Key Wedding Trends for 2012

Today we take a look at some key Wedding trends, so if you are getting married in 2011 or 2012 don't miss out on these great ideas to make your Wedding fun and different from the rest.

1. Fun with Props in Photo Booths

These are everywhere at the moment and guaranteed to bring loads of fun for to your reception. You can hire a complete photobooth with attendant for around £600 or go DIY with a backdrop and a box of props. You need hats, glasses, moustaches, picture frames and tiaras to inspire your guests to get involved. We recommend Groovy Booth or for a booth that can also capture video, try Capture Booths.

2. Yummy and Nostalgic Candy Buffets

This trend is huge in America at the moment and is becoming more and more popular here. Also know as sweetie buffets or candy bars these are huge displays of sweets for your guests to nibble. Provide scoops, bags and tongs for an old school sweet shop feel. Going DIY is possible but may cost as much as paying a company to set everything up for you. We recommend Bristol Candy Buffet for pretty vintage inspired sweeties and jars. Check out this picture by Marie Man for inspiration.


3. A Little Bit of  Vintage

The love of all things vintage is still huge in the world of Weddings. Many trends get rolled together under the banner of vintage such as shabby chic, country fair and 1950s but real vintage means using original props and decor from a previous period such as vintage tea cups, type writers, grammaphones or original champagne saucers.

You can hire props such as these from Auntie's Vintage, Bristol Vintage or the Little Wedding Helper or you can scour antique shops, charity shops or car boot sales to find your own vintage treasures. These suitcases as shown on make a great addition to vintage theme.

                                                          Love the fabric

4. Embracing the Great Outdoors
In America you can marry on a beach or under the stars but in the UK you are more limited. However a new trend for outdoor weddings is emerging and as long as you say I do officially in a Register Office you can use a calebrant or have a humanist ceremony anywhere you want. Just consider the British weather if you have your heart set on an outdoor ceremony and have an indoor location or some very large brollies to hand just in case. If this beautiful photo by Victor Sizemore doesn't inspire you to tie the knot outdoors, then nothing can.


5. Think Differently about Food and Drink

In the past if you went to a Wedding you would always have a three course meal and it normally always consisted of soup or pate to start then chicken for the main course, followed by a fruit based dessert. However for 2012, the more interesting the better.

Think afternoon teas, hog roasts, barbecues, fish and chips, ice cream vans, tapas, pie and mash and Cornish pasties. Anything goes as long as it's delicious and different and believe me your guests will thank you for being original and fun and this ice cream cart definitely ticks both boxes.


No matter what inspires you for your Wedding, try to keep things original and fun and you and your guests will have an amazing day.

Words by Stephanie Allison

Thursday 22 September 2011

Venue Spotlight: Kingscote Barn

Kingscote Barn sits in a gorgeous rural location close to Wotton-Under-Edge and Tetbury surrounded by fields and country lanes. The barn was originally part of the farm that also occupies the land and it was specifically converted to become a venue for Weddings, conferences and events.

                                            Wedding Reception

There is also accommodation on site where the smaller surrounding barns have also been converted, meaning plenty of room for the bridal party to stay.

                                           Front view of the barn

The barn really does combine the best of modern and traditional with original stone and oak combined with a light and airy feel. Kingscote Barn provides you with an onsite Events Manager to coordinate your day and thought they do not have a restaurant on site, they offer you a choice of four caterers giving you plenty of choice for your big day.

If you would like to find out more about Kingscote barn, visit the website now.

Photo Credits: Wedding Venues

Wednesday 21 September 2011

Trend Alert: Mad Men Weddings

Mad Men has had a huge influence since it began with it's sultry 60s style affecting fashion and even the fuller figure becoming more fashionable thanks to Christina Hendricks. Now it's spilling over to Weddings and becoming a key new trend.

If you are marrying your very own Don Draper (swoon), then here's some tips for a Mad Men inspired day with looks inspired by the late 50s and early 60s. Why not set the tone for your Wedding with these fabulous save the dates based on the iconic image from the opening credits.


50s style dresses have always been in vogue due to the timeless style of this era. Jackie Kennedy's dress is  a great example from this era, though of course the shorter tea length is often linked to the 1950s.


1950s Couple

 For reception styling think large floral centrepieces, martinis or whisky in crystal decanters and men in black tie or slim fitting lounge suits.



Mad Men :)

1950s bride!

Tuesday 20 September 2011

Designer Weekend at A Class Brides

Bristol Brides can have a sneak preview of the 2012 collections from Ella and True Bride at A Class Brides next month.

The Brislington bridal shop is hosting an Ella designer weekend on 7th & 8th October and a True Bride weekend 14th & 15th october.

Dress by Ella Bridal
You may also like to note that there is a Prom and Bridesmaid week during half term from October 24th-29th.

Appointments are essential, please call 0117 9193007  for more details


Monday 19 September 2011

Planning A Wedding Come Rain or Shine

Bristol Wedding Planner, Steph Allison shares some tips with us about coping with British weather when you get married.

I was involved in a gorgeous outdoor ceremony this weekend, where the happy couple had already married in the Register Office and planned to have the main ceremony in the presence of all of their family and friends on decking overlooking woodlands and a beautiful lake. Unfortunately the British weather had other plans and it rained consistently all morning, throwing the whole day into question.

Luckily the rains stopped in time to let the ceremony go ahead as planned, but they had also had the foresight to have a plan B just in case by providing an alternative area for the ceremony to take place and a mountain of golf umbrellas for guests to use.

It is vital to have contingency plans for any Wedding, particularly for wet weather. Don't just set your heart on an outdoor drinks reception or having all of your photos taken outside without having a backup location indoors. It's also a great idea to have large umbrellas to hand and possibly even some pretty Wedding wellies for the Bride and Bridesmaids if you do get outside for some photos on a wet day.

If you are having a marquee make sure that you use a reputable company so that it is 100% water tight and make sure that walkways are carpeted or made if gravel or concrete to avoid loads of mud being trailed in and out.

I have seen some gorgeous Wedding photos taken outdoors under huge brollies so don't be too disheartened if it rains on your big day. The images shown here are by American photographer Kristin Rogers. There also seems to often be a little magic when it comes to rainy wedding days that means the sun makes an appearance just in time for the ceremony.

If you would like a Wedding planner to help arrange your big day, contact Steph by email or visit her website.

Friday 16 September 2011

Vintage In The Park Wedding Fair Supporting Cots For Tots

Bristol Wedding Photographer Liz Gayther of Lizzie-May Photography is organising a very special vintage Wedding fair to raise funds for childrens charity Cots for Tots.

The Fair will take place on Sunday, 16 October at Old Down Country Park, which has been reopened recently, and houses a wide range of animals, a play area, cafe and gift shop as well as beautifully landscaped grounds and  incredible views of the Severn Valley. It now offers Brides a unique, boutique style country house perfect for fairytale weddings.

Lizzie decided to raise money for Cots For Tots following the birth of her second child, who had to spend time in the Southmead NICU as well as the Childrens Hospital due to breathing difficulties. She explains more here,

"Luckily she's fine, and even at the time, she was one of the bigger babies on the ward. Many of the others were premature, or in need of 24 hour care. It really must be scary for the parents and a great deal of work for the nurses and doctors. Therefore, I would like to give something back to them by way of thanks for their incredible work. I hope you'll join me in donating your time and money to this worthy cause.


Some of our stall holders will be displaying original, vintage items. Some will be vintage inspired. Above all, everything on display will be truly inspiring and unique. The Fair will appeal to brides who want a full vintage wedding, and to those who just want something that little bit different or just need some inspiration or that special touch. It will also appeal to the discerning vintage crowd. Entry on the day will be free - but all donations and raffle monies going to Cots for Tots"

If you are a vintage supplier and wish to exhibit or a Bride who wishes to find out more and support the campaign, you can contact Lizzie here or look at the Vintage In The Park blog for more information.

Visit Sweet & Pretty Weddings