Wednesday, December 14, 2011

NHS Staff Awards Event, Wycombe Hospital, Buckinghamshire

It's always a pleasure to work on events and we were really happy to be asked by Wycombe hospital to help with the venue decoration for their staff recognition event. We had a tight brief:  to create maximum impact with minimum budget. Always up for a challenge, we designed the rooms around a pink and blue theme to complement aspects of the room already in place.  In keeping with the celebratory nature of the event, we laid a lushious pink carpet and complemented it with warm lighting to create plenty of atmosphere. In the foyer where guests were treated to canapes and champagne, we hung drapes and used mood lighting to light the walls and cocktail tables to create a fun, yet prestigious feel. We also dressed the outside space to create an inviting area for guests to gather.

Sarah Klamut, HR Manager says “Thank you for all your hard work with dressing the rooms for our staff awards event recently. The rooms looked fantastic and everyone was very complimentary! I have been particularly impressed with your professionalism, enthusiasm and 'can do' approach. It has been such a pleasure to work with you. Many thanks.”

If you would like us to design your reward and recognition event, please call us now on 01296 663 726. We'd be delighted to share our ideas.
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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Get fit for your big day

Ok, so it's winter.  It's cold out there, it's December tomorrow and the rain is due to set in.  At times like these, there's nothing we all love more than to cosy up in front of a log fire, with snuggy socks, a big jumper and a bar of Cadbury's.  But for those of you with a wedding round the corner you might want to swap your socks for a pair of trainers and start thinking about getting fit for your big day.  Now we know it's tricky and you need huge amounts of motivation, but just think of the benefits when you slide effortlessly and elegantly into your gown this summer.

So what are we suggesting?  Well, how about a weekend at fit camp?  Now those of you who follow this blog will know we're not huge fans of the traditional 'boot' camp.  The name just makes us want to run for the hills, but we've found one with a difference!  Happy Bodies in Milton Keynes have introduced a weekend fit camp; great for those of you who have other commitments in the week.  The emphasis is also on diet and nutrition so you can keep up all your good work when you get home.

Check them out on
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Friday, October 21, 2011

Music at a marquee wedding

Marquee weddings are wonderful. You can pretty much start from scratch and personalise your design right down to the last detail. But don't get caught out when it comes to your music. If you don't plan everything carefully you could really upset your neighbours. We asked Susan Heaton-Wright from Viva Live Music how to avoid the pitfalls of live music in a marquee. Here is what she said...

“Last week I attended an event in a beautiful marquee. The venue and the catering was wonderful. There was also an excellent duo of musicians, but guests struggled to speak to each other despite the music being ‘background’. It was a shame because the musicians were great and it was a fabulous event. 

Marquees are particularly challenging for sound. The ‘walls’ don’t allow sound to bounce off them, and most marquees are quite large, so in order for guests to hear and enjoy the music, amplification and sound levels need to be higher. 

In addition to this, the sound does not remain in the marquee and neighbours can be disturbed by any entertainment: whether it be a DJ, band or just the sound of guests talking. Therefore noise levels need to be managed carefully, to ensure guests’ enjoyment and neighbours expectation is met. 

We heard that Paul McCartney’s wedding caused angry neighbours to contact Environmental Health in the early hours, and for them to visit the venue to have the music stopped. We don’t want this to happen at another wedding! 

Initially, I would seek advice from Environmental Health at your local authority. They have the power, ultimately, to have music stopped if an event is disturbing neighbours and no one wants this to happen at a wedding. They would be able to advise you on what time the music should be stopped (whether it be a live band or a disco) and also the sound volume (decibels). Local authorities vary with their systems, but it could be that you could register the event and agree on timings and sound levels (and remember to have a decibel meter), so if there are any complaints from neighbours, you will be able to prove you have permission. 

There are other tips regarding sound levels; 

  1. Make sure the musicians set up and sound check in plenty of time. Give them a deadline when they can do this BEFORE the event – don’t tell them on the day.
  2. Delegate someone in your party: a best man, father of the bride etc. who will monitor the sound levels.
  3. Choose musicians or a DJ that will respond to requests for sound levels to be managed. We always have a clause saying that musicians respond to requests for music volume to be altered by clients – I would recommend this is put in any contract.
  4. Be clear about whether you want the musicians or music to be ‘background’ or a ‘feature’ – eg After dinner cabaret or a band.
  5. As I mentioned earlier, marquees are particularly difficult to supply sound to; so often musicians only have two speaks at the front, and will put the volume of those high, so it is too loud in front of them, but the other side of the marquee can’t hear the music. A better solution is to have four speakers, one in each corner. The volume can be kept lower and more guests can hear it.
  6. It is worthwhile using the services of a sound engineer who will mix the sound levels correctly. A common mistake for DJs and musicians is to put the treble too loud, which in a marquee is particularly difficult for guests to hear each other speak as the sound cuts through the atmosphere.
In the end, it is about being informed; for the musicians or DJ working with the client to ensure the event goes well; listening to the client and also the client being prepared with timings for the supplier to ensure the event is a great success.”

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Paige and Harish's wedding is featured on J Crew's website

We have very fond memories of Paige and Harish's Spring wedding.  Every detail was perfect, Paige looked amazing in her J Crew gown, and even the sun came out to play.  Paige just contacted us to let us know that her wedding has now been featured on the J Crew website. Take a look at these beautiful pics by photographer Helen Jones...


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Monday, September 19, 2011

Weddings inspired by Autumn

Once again we are delighted to feature in the October/ November issue of Your Herts and Beds Wedding magazine.  Here's the question and what we have to say about it!

Q. I'm in the early stages of planning my wedding, which is set to take place next autumn. I've chosen a lovely venue but apart from that I'm a bit clueless. I've heard that selecting a colour scheme is the next step as it's a good base to work around. What colour combinations work well at this time of year?

A. Clare Beckwith says: Look at the trees at this time of year and you will see them change from green to yellow and red and then to brown. Rosy red apples are ripening on the trees, orange pumpkins are fit to burst and golden corn is being harvested from the fields, I can't think of a better time of year to take your inspiration from nature.

It's such a vibrant season that you might want to choose a combination of complementary colours, or even contrasting ones. Pick one or two main hues, and then use a couple of accents to add interest, perhaps for the ribbons on your bouquet. Popular autumnal colours include red, burgundy, orange, peach, rust, gold, mustard yellow, dark green, and brown. Create a mood board by cutting out pictures from magazines and using colour swatches to see what colour combinations work best for you.

That said, if you really are a fuchsia pink kind of girl and want to add turquoise accents, don't let the season stop you. It's your wedding and you should have it just the way you want.
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Monday, July 18, 2011

Choosing the perfect...... wedding venue

The other day, a friend asked me which wedding venue I’d recommend in their local area.

As a wedding planner, I am familiar with quite a few venues and it’s really easy to just list all the beautiful ones that look good and have capacity for the number of guests you are inviting. But for me, the perfect wedding venue has to have so much more.

You might have an idea in your mind that you want to get married in a particular style of venue. You might like the idea of a barn reception, or saying ‘I do’ in a Highland castle for example. Maybe you’ve got your eye on an English country manor house. But take it from me, there’s more to choosing the right venue than just looking at the bricks and mortar.

The Bingham Hotel, Richmond, Surrey

For me, it’s mostly about the people.

Everyone you come into contact with at the venue will be critical to your enjoyment of the day, so it’s really important to choose one with exceptional customer service.

Depending on the size of venue, you will often come across several of the venue’s staff. Larger venues have sales staff that show you round, talk you through the benefits of a wedding at their venue and eventually take your booking. Different staff from the operational team will then manage your wedding day. Smaller venues are likely to have one or two people who cover off both these areas.

My advice would be to spend some time at the venue beforehand to get a real feel for the people. If you are thinking about having a civil ceremony and reception at a hotel for instance, book a meal or an overnight stay well in advance so that you can sample the customer service for yourself.

Is the receptionist courteous? If you’ve been for a visit once or twice, do they recognise you and welcome you personally? How is the service at dinner? Was the food inspirational and well prepared? Do the staff smile and look happy? All these things will impact on your day.

Bisham Abbey in Buckinghamshire

I’ve been married for nearly a decade now. My husband and I return to our wedding venue every year. Why? Well, the staff at the hotel were true professionals in the run up to our big day and were nothing but outstanding on the day itself. We remember their amazing hospitality and I can hand-on-heart say that they have been consistently outstanding every year since.

If ‘customer service’ features highly on your list too, you might be interested to know that in the coming months I will be revealing some of my favourite wedding venues that tick this all important box.
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Monday, July 11, 2011

Jenna and Graeme's Pre-wedding shoot in Brighton

Jenna and Graeme from Buckinghamshire chose sunny (and windy!) Brighton as the backdrop for their pre-wedding shoot.  Pre-wedding and engagement photo shoots are becoming more and more popular.  They absolutely loved theirs and think that there are lots of reasons to make them part of your wedding plans …

1. It’s a great way to get to know and feel totally comfortable with your photographer, before the big day

Our wedding photographer is Phil Bourne, owner of e.motion images. He’s a brilliant photographer but he’s also an old friend of mine, so for me and my hubby to be, it was really important to feel confident and relaxed with Phil … not as mates, but as photographer and bride.

A pre-wedding photo shoot was a brilliant opportunity to do that and we think it worked pretty well!

2. It’s a great way to express yourself and your personality

We love all things vintage and fun … so straight away we knew we’d have a vintage photo shoot. After some thought and chat with Phil, we also knew Brighton would be the best venue for this. Not only was it an excuse to have some fun by the sea, we also knew it would really suit the vintage theme.

I’ve also seen some lovely picnic shoots, beach parties for two, and tea parties used as engagement themes. Some carefully selected props make the pictures stand out too!

3. Photos can be a great way of injecting personal touches in to your wedding day

We’ve used our pictures on our invites, order of service and in other little touches to be revealed on September 1st! (our wedding day!)

4. We’ve also made our own album as a keepsake and some as presents for family and friends, which they love!

The only piece of advice I would give anyone doing a pre-wedding photo shoot is to ‘be prepared’! When we did ours, the weather was absolutely freezing … and as you can see, very, very windy!!!!

To check out Phil’s work, have a look at contact him

If you would like your wedding or your pre-engagement shoot featured on our website, please email your details to and send us a few sample shots to look at.  We especially like to see your unique weddings with lots of special touches as these are most likely to be published.
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Monday, July 4, 2011

Wedding gifts you really want!

The tradition of giving wedding gifts for the home is not always appropriate for today’s couples. It comes from times gone by, when more often than not, brides and grooms-to-be still lived with their parents and would set up home together as newly-weds for the first time. Gifts like teapots and cutlery would have been more than welcome, I am sure. Today’s couples tend to live together before getting married and have pretty much everything they need in the way of household accessories.

To get the gift you really want, why not ask guests to donate money towards your honeymoon.  That way you get special memories and shared experiences - and which wedding guest could deny you that! If you set up your list with a specialist honeymoon gift company, your guests will have the chance to specify what they can buy. For instance, they can treat you to a bedroom on stilts, a luxurious spa treatment, surf lessons or a decadent champagne breakfast.

Now, you will always get the odd guest who doesn’t agree with the whole concept and would prefer to offer a wrapped present instead, so you could set up a mini gift list too. That way everyone wins!

Photo credits:
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Monday, June 20, 2011

Don’t get stressed, get a wedding planner!

If you think wedding planners are just for celebrities with big budgets then think again. Couples who employ wedding planners are just like me and you. Looking at my recent clients, most have been brimming with great ideas, but haven’t got the time to put them into action. Or they start planning their wedding day only to realise the enormity of the task ahead. Some have needed help organising the whole thing; some just need a list of trusted suppliers and then get on with it themselves. Others just need help tying up loose ends in the final few weeks leading up to the big day.

Working with a professional wedding planner can be a great asset. Here are 5 good reasons to think about hiring one for your celebrations:

1) Wedding Planners know the best wedding suppliers to work with

More often than not, you’ll be planning your wedding for the first time. You may scour the internet and countless wedding magazines in search of perfect suppliers, but in the end it’s a lottery - you really have no idea whether they’ll be right for you. Wedding planners have done this before. I personally have a database of everyone I’ve worked with. I make little notes on them. The only ones that make my final short list are 100% reliable, 100% professional and 100% fun to have around! It is the best day of your life after all.

2) Wedding Planners can generate ideas you may not have thought of

Now you need to be careful here as some planners are all about the organisation, and less about creativity. But if you choose carefully, you can have both. Talk to your planner about your theme and ask them to come up with ideas. Good planners will put a fresh spin on things and you can choose unique ideas that really capture your imagination.

3) Wedding Planners do all the leg work, so you so don’t have to

Whether it’s internet research, personal visits to suppliers or simply phoning around, a wedding planner can save you huge amounts of time and energy. On average, we visit all suppliers at least twice during the planning process and send and receive literally hundreds of emails. Just think how you could spend all that saved time!

4) Wedding Planners can help your day run more smoothly

Father’s of the Bride with security tags still fastened in their suits, bands refusing to play as they’ve not been paid, feuding families, and even feuding brides and grooms. These are some of the situations I’ve faced when I’ve been hired to work purely ‘on the day’. It takes a great deal of skill to manage situations like these at short notice, but any professional wedding planner will take it in their stride and work to calmly resolve tricky situations.

5) Wedding Planners can save you money

I don’t ever like to promise that I will save you money, but I promise to always try. Most reputable wedding planners charge you a fee up front rather than taking commission from suppliers. That means you always know what you are spending in advance. Good planners will keep on top of your budget. They will also know the venues that offer reduced rates for certain days of the week, or which suppliers are likely to offer discounts on your order.

With the wedding industry crammed full of suppliers, ranging from the very best to the unspeakably bad, a professional Wedding Planner could be a big asset on your wedding day!

Pictures shown are from Nic and Nic's wedding at Bisham Abbey, Buckinghamshire which Clare Beckwith Weddings planned.  Photos used with the kind permission of
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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Creative genius

We are always really interested in soming across quirky little businesses that offer something different from the norm for our brides and their weddings. 

Using our contacts, we have recently discovered creative people who do amazing things with buttons and odds & sods to make the most incredible wedding head gear and people who can create beautiful flower pom poms out of bits of tissue paper. 

Our newest find is Kyleigh who has a way with completely blank pieces of white paper.  Now, if I were to give you a piece of blank paper, you'd probably make a dodgy paper aeroplane, right?

Not Kyleigh.  She does this!

She clearly has a way with paper and a scalpel.  You can find her personalised creations at

They'd make a great gift for the happy couple, or a display on the sweetie buffet.  Even a gift to each other a special momento of your perfect day.

If you are a small business with an amazing product that you think our brides might like to see, just let me know.  I don't take bribes or payment for featuring you and your product, but I will only cover the ones I love, love, love.
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Monday, June 13, 2011

Turning heads

Now I don't know about you, but if I come across a stray button, or a piece of ribbon or the like, I pop it in my 'button box' (a small plastic airtight food container) which is where it lives untouched...well ...forever. 

But some people have a way with bits and bobs and can create the most inspired pieces from the most unlikely materials.  Which is why I just had to introduce you to Chloe Haywood from Hatastic

Chloe started making hats and fascinators when she couldn't find a hat to go with a vintage cream crepe dress for a very special wedding. She wanted a fascinator, but all she could find were bright and brash designs that were really expensive and looked like everything else on the high street.

I met Chloe a few years back when I worked on her equally creative sister's wedding. She can lovingly craft the most amazing head pieces including bridal veils, hats and fascinators.

Each item is handmade from secondhand, vintage or recycled items.  Her headpieces are unique, so you know that your design is a true one off.  No mass produced stuff here.  Perfect for the bride or wedding guest with an individual style.

Hatastic! has been nominated to be Accessory Designer of the Year at the Finest Fashion Awards in July 2011.  One to watch!

Photo credits:
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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Sing your heart out

I asked my favourite music expert Susan Heaton-Wright
to look at how brides can take elements of the Royal Wedding and make them their own.  One aspect that would be interesting to recreate is the choir.

The choir at the Royal Wedding was simply outstanding. They are one of the best choirs in the world and the sound they created was perfect for the Abbey. They led the hymn singing; sang anthems during the service, including during the signing of the register, and performed the astonishing “I was Glad” by Parry, as Catherine walked down the aisle.

Some churches do have a choir and they will be used to singing popular hymns and anthems for weddings. If you've booked a church it is worthwhile listening to the choir at a service, to see if you like the sound of them.

An alternative might be to either book a professional quartet of singers, who would lead the singing and anthems as required, or to book the services of a local amateur choir.

One note about an amateur choir; they are doing this for pleasure, but there are costs involved for them such as rehearsal time, the time of the conductor (who is normally a professional musician), hiring the music and the rehearsal room and arranging the singers to come to the wedding. I normally recommend that you make a donation to the choir of £200 - £300 to cover their expenses and time.

There are plenty of beautiful choir anthems that could be included such as:
  • Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring:  Bach
  • Lead Me Lord : Wesley
  • The Lord is my Shepherd: Various * many choirs will have the ‘Vicar of Dibley’s’ version by Howard Goodall
  • Hallelujah Chorus:  Handel
  • If ye love me: T Tallis
  • Cantique de Jean Racine: Faure
The choir will also lead the hymn singing for the congregation. Just think how relieved all your guests will be!

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Monday, June 6, 2011

The wedding of your dreams for less

Once the initial excitement of your engagement is over you can often be brought down to earth with a bump when the reality of the cost of your wedding sets in.  But help is at hand with our ideas to help you plan the wedding of your dreams for less.

Our first piece of advice is to set a budget that you can afford and stick to it. Having large debts to pay off is no way to start married life. And remember, weddings really don’t have to cost a fortune. Some of the most beautiful and memorable weddings we have seen have been on a smaller budget.

For a more cost effective wedding, try to enlist the help of talented family and friends to create flower arrangements, cakes, invitations etc. They are often delighted to be asked and your wedding will be more personal as a result. One bride we had the pleasure to work with designed her own dress, had her sister make all the bridesmaids dresses and asked an old aunt to make the cake – one of the most beautifully crafted we have ever seen.

Prioritise the elements of your wedding that are important to you – ditch the costly favours or make them yourself for example. It’s a fact that nearly half of your wedding budget will go towards paying for the reception, so keep your guest numbers to a minimum or costs will creep up. Consider getting married on a weekday when venues offer reduced prices. Choose a more alternative venue – golf clubs and village halls, for example, can often be set in pretty locations and are so much more cost effective to hire than a 5 star manor house!

One last piece of advice - always keep in the back of your mind that it’s the thoughtful touches that your guests will treasure, not how much you spent on a 5 tier cake!
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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Recreate aspects of the Royal Wedding with a Trumpet Fanfare

Wasn’t the trumpet fanfare when the Queen arrived; Catherine arrived and also when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge appeared after signing the register, fab?

Westminster Abbey is a huge venue, and requires a group of trumpeters to fanfare.  For most of us though, our wedding venues are a little smaller so a single trumpet player can re-create this feature very easily.

Rather than the trumpeter just playing as the bride arrives at the ceremony, they could play throughout the ceremony.  Here are our music expert, Susan Heaton-Wright's music suggestions:


Trumpet Voluntary: Clarke
Bridal Chorus: Wagner (Lohengrin)
Trumpet Voluntary: Stanley
Prelude to Te Deum: Charpentier


Wedding March: Mendlessohn
Rondeau: Mouret
Hornpipe from Watermusic: Handel
Ode to Joy: Beethoven (Ninth Symphony)

During the signing of the register:

Let the Bright Seraphim: Handel (with a soprano soloist)
One of the solos from above.

In addition, the trumpeter could play the melody of any hymns, to lead the hymn singing.

With thanks to Susan Heaton-Wright
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Monday, May 30, 2011

Sweet Treats

Sweet tables are really popular at weddings at the moment.  There are quite a few companies that offer this service, but if you are on a budget it's really simple to set one up yourself. 

For this one, we hired the pretty vintage style jars from and sourced the sweets ourselves.  You can put them out in the evening for guests to enjoy. Or in this instance, the bride adorned the wedding breakfast tables with pretty vintage-style bags for the guests to fill up at their leisure.

Simple, but very effective!
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Saturday, May 28, 2011

Take the lead from the Royal Wedding

If you were glued to the TV last month soaking up every last detail of the Royal Wedding, you have to agree that the organisers must be very pleased with themselves.  An undeniable triumph!  The beautiful lace gown. Pippa's incredible bridesmaid dress, the impeccably timed logistics (wouldn't have wanted that job!) and the beautiful music.

Of course, the happy couple had a rather large budget available, a unique venue, and some of the world’s best musicians to play. However, there are ways you can re-create some aspects of the wedding ceremony for your wedding.  I spoke to my music guru Susan Heaton-Wright ( for some hot tips and here they are...

Music before your wedding ceremony

The music played before the Royal Wedding was programmed and listed in the order of service. I always recommend that brides ask musicians to play music 15 minutes before the start of the ceremony; not only does this create a wonderful atmosphere, but guests don’t arrive in silence and are entertained. If you've booked a church organist, they could play a programme of music; similarly other musicians you might have booked, including a harpist, string quartet, pianist or even a singer, could perform at this point.

The musicians in this picture are who played outside on the terrace at Paige and Harish's wedding at the Bingham Hotel in Richmond.

Photo credit:
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Friday, May 27, 2011

All you need is love

I'm pretty sure blog etiquette says that I should write more than this, but what more is there to say?

I adore this cake!

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Wedding flowers that rock

If you want your wedding to be full of unique and quirky details that suit your own personal style, then you have to go the extra mile to hunt down stuff that isn't sold en masse on the high street.  All the time spent surfing on the web in the years, months and weeks leading up to your wedding will be totally worthwhile when you stumble across a lesser known supplier who has just what you want - they just take a bit of time to find!

Here's one we came across the other day - Bookworm Eats Flower.  They make beautiful bouquets, accessories, buttonholes and corsages using handmade paper flowers and the lovely Lauren who makes them is happy to create something bespoke for you too. 

Check out these little works of art...

Photo credits:
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Monday, May 23, 2011

Wedding Transport ideas

If you are getting married in a church and your reception venue is miles away, it can be a headache to ask guests to make the long drive.  Will it break up the flow of the day?  What if they get lost? Will there be enough parking?  But worry not, there are loads of things you can do to ensure the journey is as fun, and easy for guests as possible.

One idea to ensure that your guests arrive relaxed and happy at the reception venue is to hire transport to take them all from the church to the reception venue. That way, they can all travel together knowing that everything is taken care of and that they don’t need to worry about parking or finding the venue by themselves. You can also ensure that they all arrive at the same time. You could consider a vintage bus, or a perhaps a luxury modern coach.

If your church and reception venue are beside water, you could consider a hiring a boat as a really fun treat for your guests.

To make a 40 minute journey seem like just 5, you could consider having some kind of activity or entertainment on board. You might like to devise a quiz about the bride and groom that your guests can take part in. Or maybe you could set them a challenge of spotting key landmarks on the way. When they arrive at their destination, you might consider some organised entertainment to greet guests as they disembark and are waiting for other guests to get off the bus. A singer, a mix and mingle magician or a caricaturist would be the perfect welcome to your venue.
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Wednesday, May 18, 2011


This is a cute idea - it's the small details that add personality to your wedding day afterall and these would be great photo props.  These little 'help' stickers are from and are only £5.99.  Snap them up, I say!

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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Have fun with your wedding photography

We have just come across this fabulous piccy by one of our favourite wedding photographers Lord and Leverett and it brought a smile to our faces.

We had plenty of fun the other day at Paige and Harish's wedding when we used a range of props to inject fun into the photos. This young bride had other ideas when she suggested doing cartwheels.  Brave girl - we have much admiration for you.  Please don't try this in a tight dress!

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Your retro themed wedding

Retro themes are so popular nowadays, and you can have loads of fun planning every detail to ensure it's in keeping with the era you choose. If you have a lot of children attending your retro-themed wedding and want to ensure they have something fun to remember the day by, what better than to choose a wedding favour that keeps them entertained, and complements your theme.

There’s nothing more retro and iconic than a Rubics cube and this will keep them entertained for ages, as well as being a memorable game to take home. Try The kids might also enjoy other retro mini games like Twister, Connect 4, Operation and Etch a Sketch. You can find all these pocket-sized classics at

Continuing the games theme, why not treat each child to a 70s style space hopper. The younger ones might enjoy a mini wind-up version whilst I am sure the older ones will appreciate a full sized one.

If it’s a musical treat you are after, vinyl style recordable CDs would be perfect for the teens. They have the look of old vinyl records, and come in cases styled like 7" record sleeves. Despite their retro looks, each CD can store up to 700Mb of data, songs or pictures

For the younger ones, why not consider a retro harmonica from Heals. It’s great for beginners, as well as experts!

The little girls among your guests will treasure adorable Milly Molly Mandy books
Why not present them in retro ‘cut out doll’ party bags from

For the boys, and also available from Love the Little Things, is a pin ball game with a cool retro picture on the back of the tin. Again present in a retro bag adored with cars especially for the boys.

Pretty much all kids love sugary treats, so retro sweets are bound to impress. Try a mini gum ball machine or a mini gum ball slot machine This is an American website, but I have found they reliably deliver to the UK. Other ideas are classics like Love Hearts, black jacks, sherbet dib dabs and cola cubes For a retro funfair feel, you could go for candy floss, personalised rock, toffee apples or popcorn.

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Monday, May 9, 2011

Paige and Harish's vintage wedding at The Bingham, Richmond

It was a complete treat to be invited to work with Paige and Harish on their wedding at the fabulous Bingham Hotel in Richmond.  Wonderful riverside location, wonderful ideas, completely wonderful couple. 

Paige, originally from New Jersey, USA and Harish met at St Andrews university just over 6 years ago, when Paige popped a valentines card under Harish's door. Brave move, and it clearly bowled him over! 

Their guests flew in from all over the globe and were treated to the amazing Bingham hospitality.  They could not have had a more perfect day for their celebrations as temperatures soared to an unseasonal 26 degrees on Easter Sunday.

I've been excited to see their photos - mainly because they incorporated so many really interesting details - a wedding planner's dream.  Take a look.

Wedding planner - Clare Beckwith Weddings
Photographer - Helen Jones photography
Brides's dress - J Crew (USA)
Bride's sash - Marisa (USA - handmade in New Jersey, where bride is from)
Bridesmaids dresses - David's Bridal (USA)
Bride's shoes - New Look
Groom's suit and groomsmen's waistcoats/cravats - Moss Bros
Flowers - Conservatory Florist, Richmond, Surrey
Wedding cake (birdcage) - The Cake Parlour, Wimbledon
Groom's cake and cupcakes with St Andrews crest - The Cake Parlour, Wimbledon
Favour bags - Handmade by groom's mother with fabric bought in USA
'Something borrowed and something old' - Vintage birdcage charm from Ireland (a gift from Paige's bridesmaid Grace - pinned to bouquet)
'Something blue' - Ribbon monogrammed with bride's initials and date of wedding - J Crew (pinned to bouquet)
'Something new' - Bride's necklace - Baccarat
Invitations and placecards - Vera Wang
Orders of Ceremony, table numers and seating plan - Ruth Springer Design
Frame for seating plan - Not on the High Street
Tall Birdcages - Wedding Day Hire
Double sided picture frames - John Lewis
Oversize Balloons - Signature balloons
Ivory lace for balloons - John Lewis
Ivory satin ribbon - The Ribbon Company
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