Monday 31 October 2011

November Dates for your Diary

Here's what's happening in the world of Bristol weddings this November.

Bridezillas Store Opening A brand new bridal accessory boutique is opening in Keynsham on the 1st November at 10am where excellent customer service and gorgeous products are all part of the fantastic shopping experience.

South West Region Aspirational Weddings Show at Cheltenham Racecourse - 20th November 11am - 4pm. Advance tickets available, with special offers

Christmas at the Orangery Not strictly a Wedding event but lots of pretty and yummy things will be on display so pop along for some gorgeous gifts and meet some top Wedding suppliers moonlighting as Santas Little Helpers such as Rachel Goodchild, Chocolate Delores, Mullion Cove and Bristol Vintage. Saturday 26th November, The Clifton Club, 10am to 6pm.

Open Weeekend The Manor, Somerset Marry Me In Somerset and the Manor invite you to visit this Exclusive Boutique Venue on Saturday 26 November 12 – 8pm and Sunday 27 November 12 – 4pm. Admission is £10 and includes sampling some of Somerset’s finest produce.

            The Manor - Open Weekend

Friday 28 October 2011

Help For a Great Best Mans Speech

Today we have a fantastic interview with writer and broadcaster George Watts aka The Wedding Fairy, who you may recognise if, like me, you love a bit of Wedding TV. George is actually a  Bristolian himself, so of course he wanted to share all of the news about his new book with us. I put on my most serious investigative journalism hat to ask him as few questions about life as a TV Wedding expert.

Tell us about your links to Bristol?

I was born in Bristol and my Dad used to play for Bristol City back in the 50's - he was known as 'Ginger Watts'. I think it was all down to the follicles! Luckily I still have tons of friends and family living in the City so I visit regularly. I miss Tarrs Ice Cream and Bacon butties by the harbourside if I am away for too long!

What have been your Wedding career highlights to date?

Well interviewing Uma Thurman is definitely up there but, covering the Royal Wedding on TLC America was pretty amazing especially as I was sat on the sofa alongside Rupert Everett! The scene in Times Square at 5am was incredible. That City knows how to party! The whole experience made me realise just how huge the Kate 'n' Wills fest was on a Global scale.

What top Wedding planning tips can you share from working on Wedding Breakfast?

Oh that show was amazing. I recorded over 100 episodes and loved every second. It was literally cakes, flowers, dresses and diamante all the time at Wedding TV! One thing it taught me was to really enjoy every element of the planning process. I met so many couples who were literally hysterical wrecks but, it really does not need to be like that if you get yourself a good big day plan together and get organised.

Tell us a bit about your new book

Well I signed a global ebook deal to write 10 books over the next 12 months and even though there are quite a few relevant publications on the market, I just knew I had to start with the boys! I have heard so many disastrous speeches over the years and come across so much bad advice that I wanted to get my words of wisdom out there pronto! The book covers everything from gathering content effectively to the speech delivery. Essentially it's a one-stop-shop for the best man also including ideas for the stag party, suit hire and a run down of big day duties.

Can you share 5 top tips for a great Best Mans speech

My top 5 would be.... ​

1) Don't forget to talk about the stunning bride
2) Steer clear of classic best man jokes - v tacky
3) Don't joke about how nervous you are, it makes an audience feel uncomfortable.
4) Don't try and make an enemy out of or embarrass the Mother-of-the-Bride - it always ends in tears! ​
5) Ex-Girlfriends and Celebrity crushes are a total no no!

And one for luck!

6) Think 10 mins all in. Job done!

What other projects are you currently working on?

I am also working on a really exciting broadcast project at the moment for facebook called 'The Wedding Clinic' which is coming soon via my brand new page  - get online and get involved!  

Thanks to George for sharing some top Wedding tips with us and you can order his new book on Amazon here. It's a bargain for Kindle owners at only £2.50 and it will also be available to buy on IBookstore soon.

Thursday 27 October 2011

Bristol Brides to Be...Lets Be Sociable

Did you know that Bristol Wedding News is also on Facebook and Twitter? We'd love you to follow us on Twitter or come and "Like" us on Facebook (it's nice to be liked). I launched this blog back in June and I have been so delighted with how it's already grown to over 3000 page views per month and is increasing all of the time, so I thought I'd share some information about the history of Bristol Wedding News.

I started writing Bristol Wedding News as I found it hard to find information about Bristol Weddings and also because, as a Bristol Wedding supplier, I realised it was hard for small businesses to tell Brides what they are up to. Wedding magazine advertising costs hundreds or even thousands of pounds for one small advert and wedding fairs around £100 to £150 to exhibit.

This makes it hard for all of the talented and hard working self employed and often small Wedding businesses to promote themselves, especially when working from home or trying to grow with a small start up budget or work around families. Like me, many Bristol Wedding suppliers that I have met are local women who are following their dreams and trying to build successful careers.

This blog was designed as a way to connect Bristol Brides with great local suppliers and also national suppliers that they can order from online but may not know about. If you regularly read Bristol Wedding News and have found it useful in planning your Wedding, I'd love to hear from you.

Also if you have any feedback about what could improve or what you'd like to see on here, I'd love to hear your views. You can get in touch by email, comment on the posts, comment on our facebook group or message me on Twitter.  However you choose to get in touch, I look forward to hearing from you.

Don't forget that once you have tied the knot, you can send in your Wedding photos to be featured on these pages too. Thank you to all of those who have read and contributed to Bristol Wedding News so far. Let's work together to make it a fantastic resource for any couples getting Married in the Bristol area.

Like us on facebook

Follow us on Twitter

Steph x

Bristol Wedding News is owned and edited by Steph Allison who also runs How 2 I Do Wedding Planning and Bristol Candy Buffet

Wednesday 26 October 2011

I Love Lucy...Ledger Designs

It can be hard to find really stylish wedding invitations that are different from the norm, so we are delighted to share these stunning designs from Lucy Ledger.





Lucy offers a range of either off the peg designs or you can work with her bespoke service to design something special and totally unique to match your theme. As well as save the dates and invitation you can order matching postcards, place cards, table numbers, table plans and orders of service.



Even if you're not getting married you can order greetings cards, prints and posters on the site too. Visit Lucy Ledger Designs here to see the full range.

Words by Stephanie Allison

Tuesday 25 October 2011

Wedding Open Evening At Redwood Hotel & Country Club

This Thursday, the 27th November, future Brides and Grooms to be will have the opportunity to visit Brook Redwood Hotel & Country Club and see it as it could be on their dream big day. A variety of Wedding suppliers will be on hand, plus there will be a chance to view the ceremony and reception rooms.

It starts at 4pm and runs until 9pm and entry is free, plus there will be a glass of sparkling wine and canapes on arrival.

Redwood Hotel & Country Club is the perfect location for ceremonies and receptions. Set in 16 acres of grounds, the photo opportunities are endless. The Hotel has a number of flexible suites that are ideal for a variety of wedding celebrations including the panelled room dating back to 1898.

                              Picture credit: Laterooms

Find out more about the hotel and download a wedding brochure here

Monday 24 October 2011

Bridezillas Grand Opening

We've been delighted to keep you up to date with the latest on the opening of Bridezillas, a fantastic new Bridal Accessory boutique in Keynsham. The official opening date has now been launched on the website as 10am on the 2nd November.

There are also some sneak preview pictures online taken from a recent Marry Me In Somerset wedding fair, where Bridezillas owner Amanda met some lucky Brides to be and showed them some of her gorgeous range including tiaras, shoes, umbrellas, bracelets, capes and much more. These beautiful pictures by Wedding and documentary photographer Marie Man, give a real feel of what's in store.



You can visit Bridezillas from the 2nd November at 18 High Street, Keynsham, BS31 1DQ.

Photo Credits: Marie Man

Friday 21 October 2011

Wedding Cars To Stop Traffic In!

When one of the ivory convertibles from Englands Finest Wedding Cars arrived at the Clifton Suspension Bridge in August to have photographs with the Bride and Groom, there were some inquisitive sunbathers keen to get a better look.
And who can blame them with these beautiful vintage style convertible’s with the ‘just married’ Bride and Groom arriving in style.

Jayne has three of these beauties for hire in and around Bristol and Bath and this year has already proved to be one of the busiest for her company with over 170 cars reserved during 2011, with next year looking to be even busier!

To hire Jayne’s cars please contact her on 0117 9324340 for dates remaining and prices for 2012 and also for weddings in 2013.

Thursday 20 October 2011

Trend Alert: Cool Brittania

Us Brits are a proud bunch and the Royal Wedding way back in April reminded us how much we love a Union Jack, street party and a bit of bunting, so why not "keep calm and carry on" planning a truly British Wedding.

For this look, think street parties, village halls and lots of fun. You can even combine it with a vintage wartime vibe with 40s music and props. How about some cupcakes for your guests. You can buy these little flags from the All in One Wedding Shop


When it's time to toast the happy couple, you can't get much cuter than these mini champagne bottles from Harvey Nichols at £12.50 per bottle.

                                  Pinned Image

Of course bunting is essential and you can buy this great quality bunting below from All The Fun Of The Fair

                                                     Image of Retro Union Jack Bunting

You can't get much more British than strawberries and cream, well ice cream, and how sweet would it be to serve this to guests with their canapes for a summer Wedding. You can buy these bowls from Party Pieces  (owned by our lovely future Queen's parents The Middletons).

                                                   Union Jack Ice Cream Bowl

And don't forget to include this iconic poster designed during the second world war to boost morale

                                                      Keep Calm and Carry On Red Poster

For more ideas visit my board on Pinterest here

Stephanie Allison is a Bristol Wedding Planner and the owner of How 2 I Do and is available to help you plan your Wedding theme. She also has spaces on her "How 2 Make Your Wedding Sparkle" workshop in December.

Wednesday 19 October 2011

Ask a Bristol Wedding Planner

If you need some wedding planning help, send your questions through to Steph Allison of How 2 I Do Wedding Planning by emailing us and we will answer them on Bristol Wedding News to give everyone planning their big day some tips, ideas and inspiration.

Q. I'm looking for a Wedding venue that's a bit different as lots of my friends have already done hotels and big country houses. Where can you suggest to make our Wedding stand out? Lara, Bradley Stoke

A. Hi Lara, Actually, you're in luck in Bristol as there is a huge range of Wedding venues and some are really fun and unusual. My top venues to look into are,

Clifton Pavillion, which combines the tradition of a Georgian style Wedding venue with amazing views over Bristol Zoo. Your guests can also have free access to the zoo, meaning no boring waiting around while you have your pictures taken and you could get some fantastic shots.

                          The Clifton Pavilion

The SS Great Britain really makes an amazing unusual venue as you can get married on the Promenade Deck of an historic ship, dine in the First Class Lounge and drink canapes on deck. Your guests will love how fun and different it is.

                             Brunel's ss Great Britain Jules & Mike

Clifton Lido is also a great unusual venue. It was totally refurbished a few years ago and has a brilliant restaurant overlooking the pool. It's licenced for civil ceremonies and really suits a chilled out modern wedding.


Matara is a great choice if you want your ceremony to stand out as you can get married in a semi-outdoor ceremony and the whole place has a great zen like quality. There are also great features for your pictures such as a maze, lake and 28 acres of parkland to lose yourself in.

                                     by The Matara Centre

Photo Credits: Bristol Zoo, Clifton Lido, Iris Weddings, Matara of Flickr

Tuesday 18 October 2011

40s Style Glamour with the Dixiebelles

The Dixbelles were at Vintage in the Park on Sunday and really wowed the crowds with their 40s songs and glamorous image so today we have dedicated an entire post to them.

The Dixibelles are a 3 part close harmony group made up of Charlotte Dean, Sarah Dean and Katie Salt. They are inspired by 40s singers such as the Andrews Sisters and truly embody the wartime spirit with their uniforms and union jack adorned microphone stands.


Their repertoire covers classics such as "We'll meet again" "Don't sit under the apple tree" and "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" as well as "Candy Man". Check out some of their songs on this video.

The Dixibelles would be a fantastic addition to any vintage style Wedding. You can find out more about them on their facebook page or website.

Photo from the Dixibelles facebook page

Monday 17 October 2011

Vintage In The Park at Old Down

Yesterday saw some of Bristols top wedding suppliers exhibiting at the newly opened Old Down Manor for Vintage in the Park. The house has been completely remodelled following huge investment and is now an amazing mix of traditional and modern with large airy rooms and glamorous crystal chandeliers adorning the high ceilings.

The views from the landscaped gardens are also divine stretching over miles of countryside and down to the severn bridge. Old Down is also a country park with animals, a farm shop, bistro and more so is well worth a visit, whether you are planning a Wedding or not.

Old Down has it's first Wedding next week and already has lots more booked despite being a building site when most brides and groom booked. Luckily their faith and imagination has been rewarded with a top wedding venue that won't disappoint.

The suppliers ha some great displays for Brides and Grooms to view, such as the Candy Buffet shown above from Bristol Candy Buffet, the table styled by the Little Wedding helper below, plus beautiful vintage dresses and accessories from The Bridal Styling Company and cupcakes from Cupcake Delight (pictured) and the Vanilla Pod bakery.

The wedding fair was organised by Lizzie May in aid of Cots for Tots, with each exhibitor paying £65 towards the charity and donating prizes for the raffle. Over 500 people turned up to visit the fair and to view the house.

Exhibitors ranged from florists to cakes, candy buffets, chair covers, magicians and singers so there was lots of ideas and inspiration for Bristol brides. The gorgeous floral displays shown above are from Bijoux Floral (top and centre)  and the Wilde Bunch (bottom).

Here is a full list and links to all of those who took part and donated towards a great cause. Please follow the links to find out more about these brilliant suppliers.


The Wilde Bunch Florist, Bijoux Wedding and Event Flowers, Sorori Design Florist,

Photographers and Videographers

Caroline Alexander Photography, Lizzy May Photography, Wedding Day Movie Video

Venue Styling, Decorations and Accessories

The Little Wedding Helper Venue Styling, Ambience Venue Styling, Aunties Vintage China,

New City Sound DJs, Dixie Belles  Singers

Jewellery, Clothing and Make Up

Frocks and Tails at Home Menswear, The Bridal Styling Company, Hannah Banks Jewellery, Jess Mills Make Up

Cakes and Sweet Treats

Lizzie Likes - home made treats, The Vanilla Pod BakeryCupcake Delight, Bristol Candy Buffet

Wedding Cars

England's Finest Cars, Karma Kars


County Marquees  Alec Walker Toastmaster,  Sur Les Ailes D'Amour Doves, Archibald Edwards Stationery, Elf sitters Child Minders, Darren Campbell Magician
Surroundings Gifts and cute wedding stuff, Jamie at Home Homewares

Friday 14 October 2011

Loving the Vintage Drawer

At Bristol Wedding News we love vintage prettiness so we couldn't help a little gasp of delight when viewing Vicky Trainors gorgeous Vintage Drawer range, available to buy on Etsy. These hand made wedding signs are so pretty and original and would be fantastic for any vintage inspired Weddings.

                                 vintage love - pretty little sign (No.6)

                                  love is sweet (no.4)

How about place names or table names made by hand using vintage fabrics and applique details. They would make a real change from the traditional printed table numbers or place cards.

                                 bride and groom place names (No.7)

                                 top table sign (collection 1)

Find our more about the these lovely items here and also see the full range of products available such as table plans, brooches and more or visit the online Etsy store here for a range of ready to buy items.

Thursday 13 October 2011

Venue Spotlight: Byzantium

If you are having a Wedding on a reasonably tight budget, you won't want to spend a fortune on hiring a venue. Byzantium could be the perfect solution for you as it has no venue hire charge, just an agreed minimum spend if you want exclusive use. If you haven't eaten at Byzantium before then you're in for a treat when you enter the Moroccan inspired lounge area downstairs that makes the perfect space for a Wedding reception.

They are licenced for civil ceremonies and charge £300-£400 to marry there. The restaurant can hold up to 120 guests for a sit down meal. There is a great choice of food as you would expect with any restaurant from buffets to set menus and their famous lanterns offering six mini starters or desserts.

To find out more visit their website here where you can download a wedding pack

Photos credits: What's on Bristol

Wednesday 12 October 2011

Is your Wedding Protected?

One thing that many brides overlook is Wedding Insurance, seeing it as an extra cost when their budgets are already stretched. If you haven't arranged any Wedding Insurance yet here's some important reasons why you should protect your big day.

Wedding Insurance will protect you if you need to cancel your Wedding at short notice due to the illness of a key member of the wedding party. This could be crucial as you could avoid worry about the financial implications of calling everything off. However it won't cover pre-exisiting medical conditions and you will need to fill in information about the health of the wedding party and any medications they are on.

                           Matthew McConaughey trying to save the wedding cake.

It will also protect you if you have to relocate your wedding at extra costs, such as due to a fire, flood or closure of your venue or if a supplier goes bust taking your deposit with them due to poor economic conditions. What if all of your wedding gifts were stolen or damaged or your dress is ruined days before the ceremony. You would feel better knowing everything is protected.

Wedding insurance costs around £50 and is well worth it to protect the £15,000 to £20,000 most couples now spend on their Weddings. For more information on wedding insurance visit

Wedding Insurance

Image: Ghosts of Girlfriends Past New Line Cinema 2009

Tuesday 11 October 2011

Vintage Wedding Fair This Sunday

Vintage In the Park takes place on Sunday and some of Bristol's best vintage suppliers will be at Old Down in support of local charity Cots for Tots.


You don't have to be a bride to come down and find something a little bit special. Entry will be free, but there will be a raffle, with proceeds to go to the Cots For Tots Charity. Find out more here

Monday 10 October 2011

Wedding Cakes and Cupcakes from Absolutely Cakes

We have been contacted by Absolutely Cakes to tell you about their Wedding cakes and cupcakes. They have a great selection on their website that you can purchase and order easily online.

                                                      Butterfly Wedding

"Whether you want Traditional, Classical, Elegant, Modern, or Novelty, our Multi Tiered Cakes or Cupcake Towers will be freshly made from the best of ingredients and can be tailored to your individual requirements in both looks and flavours."

                                            Butterfly Wedding detail


They also make delicious macaroons, a French delicacy which is becoming more and more popular in the UK. They can be made in a rainbow of colors and flavours to match any Wedding theme and Absolutely Cakes make them in Chocolate, Vanilla, Rose, Tiramisu, Coffee, Lemon, Chocolate Mint, Chocolate Ginger, Lavender Chocolate, Orange Blossom. Yum Yum!


You can also visit them and buy cakes at the following markets across Bristol:
  • Tobacco Factory Market, Southville, every Sunday, 10.00 to 2.30
  • Whiteladies Road Local Producers Market, first and third Saturdays of the month, 9.30 to 2.00
  • Corn Street Farmers Market, every Wednesday, 9.30 to 2.30
  • Thornbury Fine Food Fair, quarterly as advertised
Find out more on facebook or the website

Images courtesy of Absolute Cakes

Words by Stephanie Allison

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