Harriet Wilde @ Peony Bridal

Last week I headed down to Hillsborough to meet with Elsebeth & her mum from Peony Bridal. I love visiting Elsebeth as she always makes me feel so welcome in her store. We had a proper girlie catch up and it was lovely to hear how much Peony had grown over the past few months. 

When Elsebeth first emailed me about a catch up she entitled her email “Shoes Glorious Shoes” so I knew I was in for a little more excitement than usual and I was right. Peony are now stockists of the Harriet Wilde shoe range.

Harriet Wilde’s range of Wedding Shoes include both bespoke and ready to wear collections, of which Peony stock. I was so surprised at how comfortable the pairs I tried on were – I really didn’t want to take this little gold pair of my feet!   

    

Each pair is lovingly hand crafted in Spain using only the finest materials, each pair is embellished by hand in London. 

   

   
The satin shoes can be re-coloured to match your dress, or post ceremony to ensure the shoes are worn again.  

   
The pictures really do not do these little beauties justice and I have been raving about them ever since. I found thema little more special than the traditional wedding shoe in that they weren’t blatantly wedding shows meaning they are far more wearable. They were also very comfortable and majorly pretty.

http://harrietwilde.com

http://www.peonybridal.co.uk 

    
   

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Time to get my Wedding body back! Quiche recipe πŸ³

After starting back with Allan Davison last week and getting my measurements, wright & body fat measured we discovered I had two stone on from my wedding! TWO STONE! When they say you get “comfortable” after the wedding, they obviously weren’t wrong. I know, from having PT sessions with Allan before, not to listen to the scales and to pay attention to my body fat & measurements. I followed his guidance before and it paid off so I’m doing the same again this time!

My diet is woeful! So as well as the PT sessions I know I need to work very hard on what I’m eating and Allan is helping me re-learn everything. At each meal I am to have three things; protein, carbs & fats. Around a fist size portion of protein, scooped hand portion of carbs & only a thumb sized amount of fats. Easy? 😳

So with that in mind I’m getting food prepared today as I know over the holidays it will be way too tempting to nip out and grab a take out or head out for dinner. Normally though, I’ll probably just put on extra ingredients at dinner so that I can keep the extra for lunches the following day (another one of Allan’s tips!).

First up today was my Quiche. I absolutely love quiche & it is the easiest way for me to eat veg as I’m definitely not a veg person! Yes, I know the pastry is bad but it’s a low fat version and I don’t think I can drastically cut my carbs right down at the minute after being so unhealthy for so long!

Let me know what you think of this if you try it!

Ingredients

🍳 6 eggs

🍳 Low fat shortcrust pastry

🍳 8 bacon medallions

🍳 4 cherry tomatoes

🍳 handful of spinach 

🍳 handful of mozzarella 

🍳  dash of milk

1. Spritz your oven proof dish with low cal olive oil. 

 2. Line your dish with the shortcrust pastry leaving a little extra around the sides. Stab it a few times with a fork and cover this in grease proof paper. Put something heavy on top and pop it in the oven for around 20 mins (I used the oven proof peas).  

 3. While the pastry is in the oven dry off your bacon and cut into your desired size.

4. Whisk the eggs and add in salt, pepper and milk. Cut your tomatoes and spinach.

5. When the pastry is ready line the dish with the bacon, tomatoes, spinach and mozzarella. 

    
   
6. Pop it in the oven for around 20-25 mins or until a knife comes out clean.

Voila! 

 

Getting Skin Ready with Clare McKinney

Today was my first consultation with the lovely Clare McKinney. I don’t think I’ve ever spoken to someone so knowledgable about skin & I’m gutted I didn’t know her before my wedding!
  Clare went over my current skin regime & what products I used, we talked about how I found my skin and then she took a good poke & prod at it. Here’s what she found:

🌸 My skin is dehydrated so I need to be drinking 2-3 litres of water daily

🌸 No more wipes – these removes all the skins natural oils as well as taken of make up so they are really bad!

🌸 Clearasil is really strong for the skin & can also remove the natural oils.

Clare kindly gave me samples of the products she has recommended for me to use;

🌺 Yonka Cleansing Milk

🌺 Image Vital C Hydrating Anti-Aging Serum

🌺 Image Prevention + Daily Tined Moisturizer

  I love that she gave me these samples rather than me having to commit to spending a fortune on products that I may have to change. The samples should last around one week and if I find that they are working I’ll be calling in next Saturday to purchase them. 

    
 In conjunction with the products I will also be seeing Clare every 4-6 weeks for a facial. The first one we have planned is the Yonka Le Grande Classique. It is a personalised facial which is deep cleansing & massaging on the skin. 4 weeks later I will be moving onto the Image Signature Facial. I have heard loads about the Image Signature facial & loads of celebs rave about it!

As well as having the treatments and using the products with Clare I will be eating a healthy, balanced diet & making sure I drink 2-3 litres of water a day (3+ on gym days as the skin is more dehydrated on those days with sweating πŸ˜…). 

If you are thinking of putting in place a skin care regime before your wedding I can’t recommend Clare enough. She was extremely knowledgeable about both the Image & Yonka products as well as skin in general so I know I’m in safe hands!πŸ‘

Linda and Darren

I was taken back by Linda’s beautiful photos when she sent them too me. There were just far too many to pick from so I thought I would include them all πŸ™ˆ.

“It’s dangerous asking a newly wed to send through her favourite photos” 

  

  

 Linda & Darren married on Saturday 5th December 2015 in the middle of Storm Desmond! The wedding was held at Scarva Presbyterian Church and reception at Brownlow House, Lurgan. 

“My dress was by Ronald Joyce from Bramble Brides in Cookstown. My headpiece and earrings were from Gibson BespokeS.A.K Designs did make up (miracle worker) and Niamh and Rebecca from Joanne McKelvey Hair, Banbridge looked after our hair.

Linda’s beautiful bridesmaid dresses were actually spotted by her sister on Pinterest. Eventually she tracked them down to Caris Closet in Malahide (we now have a Belfast store too 😍).   

“Boys suits were from Groom Formal Hire, Banbridge.   

  
    
    

“My florist was Kathryn from the The Posy Barn, Waringstown, she is amazing!!”


    
    
    

     

My sister designed and made our beautiful cake, Elaine of Young’s Buns!!
   

    
   

I am in love with your pictures Linda! Marie did an amazing job, you would never know the weather was horrendous that day!

Wishing you a lifetime of happiness together!

Photography by  Marie Allen, Portadown. Videographer by Carl Higgins Media.

Watch Linda & Darren’s Wedding Videography by Carl Higgins Media here.

Roisin and Brian

The beautiful Roisin was married on 15th May last year on her and Brian’s seven year anniversary. 

    
 

I tried to go for something different with our bridesmaid dresses and had my heart set on 3 different colours, hoping it would go down well in a small village. 

   


 The mass was held in Roisin’s local church, St.Marys Swanlinbar, followed by a reception in the Slieve Russell Hotel, Ballyconnell, Co.Cavan. 

Unfortunately the weather didn’t stay on our side and we didn’t get to take our pictures in the beautiful gardens we had viewed but we were blessed with the beautiful interior of the hotel to get all our pictures.

  
    
  

Roisin looked beautiful in her Maggie Sottero dress from Serendipty in Fivemiletown. Her bridesmaids dresses were by True Bride from Perfect Day, Lurgan and flower girls and junior bridesmaid by True Bride in Creative Ideas, Cookstown. 

    
   

I wanted a princess wedding but keeping the class and making sure it was modern and young.

The men’s suits were from DTone in Cavan and those beautiful pastel flowers by McGarry Florist.   

 Hair by Eden Hair

Make up by Advanced Beauty

Jewellery & headpieces by Couture Bridal – Ellie Annion.

Wishing you both a lifetime of happiness!

Getting Hair Ready

I’m naturally a brunette so for me it was important to go back to my roots for my wedding day. As a little girl I always picture my white wedding dress with a tan and brown locks so after getting engaged I quickly began the process of darkening my hair. Almost two years later and I’m at the start of reversing that journey. 

 My hair had been very damaged from over processing when I was blonde. So going back to my roots helped to condition it and bring it back to life. I began having regular hair treatments and using home hair care products to help revive it to make sure it was thick, long and shiny for my big day.

We can sometimes forget about ourselves in the run up to the wedding and how we want to look. We picture our dress, hairstyle and make up but not actually about getting our hair and skin into the best condition.

To begin the process of going blonde again I’ve been using some home and salon treatments to help condition my hair for the harsh bleach that will be used to lighten it so I thought I would share them with you all to help your hair for your big day.

1. Nioxin Micro Dermabrasion Treatment

Peter Mark in Newry kindly offered me this treatment complimentary when I worked with them a few weeks back at The Quays Wedding Fayre. The treatment is basically a facial for the scalp. It cleans and removes any impurities in and around the scalp and follicle to ensure that new hair will grow through fuller and stronger, reducing breakage and adding vitality and volume. Ultimately leaving the scalp feeling completely refreshed.  

After having the treatment in the Peter Mark salon, they also sent me home with the home hair care products; Nioxin shampoo, conditioner and a scap spray. I have noticed my hair has appeared thicker already and I am having less breakage. It also has a beautiful shine that I haven’t had in a while. 

 2. Kardashian Dry Oil

I totally jumped on the band wagon when this came out. It is definitely more expensive than some other highstreet products but I am obsessed with the Kardashians so I had to try their products. I was so surprised at the quality! The quality is somewhere between high street and salon products and I love the difference it’s making to my ends. I apply it most nights while I sleep and then again in the morning when my hair is wet. I also add it to any treatments I apply to my hair. It’s sulphate free to so perfect if you are wearing extentions. A dry oil is a must for glowing hair and their is such a variety on the market now. 

 3. Aussie Shampoo and Conditioner

The Aussie range is πŸ‘Œ and I don’t think I’d ever use another high street range than it. From the smell to the way it makes my hair feel it’s is unbelievable!

4. Heat Protection Spray

At the minute I love the Tresemme heat protection spray although I wouldn’t be as dying about it as the other products. I haven’t found one that I am totally in love with but I know that I need it as I blow dry and straighten my hair every other day! As soon as I find one I love I’ll keep you all posted!

I think a fantastic hairdresser is a must for any dramatic colour change or just to get your hair in tip top condition. Peter Mark in Newry have been absolutely fantastic with helping me. They are knowledgable in their field and have been able to advise me on which products are the best for my hair type so definitely check them out. 

Who Did I Use: The Photographer

Picking my photographer was easy. Honestly. In the era of social media (particularly Instagram!) you can very easily see which photographer has the still you want to go for.

I was blessed to meet Andrea from Angel Photography at a wedding show and we hit it of straight away. Although I had previously spoken to a few other photographers and had consultations with them, I didn’t feel as comfortable with any as what I did with Andrea. 

 After first meeting her I trawled through her Facebook page and just loved her previous weddings. Things were made even better when we had our engagement shoot. The whole thing was so natural and Carl and I just had so much craic throughout it – we almost forgot Andrea was there. This put me more at ease as I knew my dad hated photos. 

    
    
 On the day Andrea was a dream. We only spent around 90 mins away from our guests getting photos, the rest were totally natural, just how we wanted them. We worked with Andrea before the day to establish which photos were must haves so on the day when she wasn’t with us she made sure to nab those shots. Our guests loved her so much some even booked Andrea for family photos. 

If you are still looking for a photographer definitely check out Angel Photography. You will not be disappointed 😍. 

    
    
   

How Do You Pick?

I continually get asked which suppliers I used for my wedding. From the photographer to the dress and sometimes people can almost be afraid to ask – but don’t be! Although I absolutely never booked a supplier for my wedding at a wedding show, they always gave me great ideas of who I wanted to use. I would then go away and do my research:

  • Do I know anyone that used them that I could ask?
  • Do bloggers use them or promote them.
  • Check out their social media; Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – do I like their style?
  • Have they been involved in any photoshoots. If so, did I like it?
  • Were they nice at the show or to talk to for the first time?

  If I couldn’t lay down a deposit after answering these questions, then that person wasn’t for me and I went on the hunt again. 

We are so lucky in N.I. to have an amazing array of talented people working in the wedding industry but that makes it even more difficult for couples. So I’m here to help! 

 Over the next few weeks I’m going to give you the low down on who I used for my wedding, the reasons behind why I loved them and if I would do anything differently.

Hopefully it helps a little!

  Remember, I also plan weddings, so if you are finding you are totally lost, don’t have the time or just need someone to help along the way for reassurance then let me know!

Jenna x

Ten Wedding Pitfalls not to fall for

  It’s very easy to get carried away when you get engaged! It’s such an exciting time and so many bride-to-be’s just want to jump in and start planning but stop, breathe and take note. 

There are so many traditional pitfall’s that catch brides out each year. So to give you a helping hand I thought I’d tell you about some of the mistakes I’ve been told about (or even experienced!).

1. Be consistent with your plus one policy

People automatically assume they will be given a plus one to your wedding so remember, if you give one person a +1, who have to give all singleton’s a +1. Weddings are known for causing offence, and most often the easily offended are the older generation and those guests that are still single. The last thing you want is an argument before your big day.

2. Read your contracts and keep receipts

It sounds boring but a signed contract in relation to your wedding is the same as any other. It’s legal binding, so know what your signing. The same goes for paying. Make sure to keep all your receipts to prove you have paid. More often than not brides have come to me  saying they have paid cash or something and now have no proof so think ahead!

3. Don’t pick the bridal party too quickly

Things change, life moves on and if you pick a friend to be in your bridal party that was your best friend at your engagement but now that you’ve turned into Bridezilla isn’t your best friend anymore your going to be raging when she is in your wedding photos.. forever! 

 4. Don’t start dress shopping too early

I did it and fell hook, line and sinker! I bought my dress too early and 9 months before the big day ended up buying a second dress! Remember it takes around 6-9 months for a dress to be ordered and arrive, so aim to start 12 months before the big day.

5. Check your postage

Yep, fell for this one too. Make sure to take your invitations to the post office and be charged the proper postage. Wedding invitations can often be slightly heavier so a 1st class stamp won’t do!

6. Mind your heel height

When ordering your dress take into consideration how high you want your heels. If you know you want 6 inch heels make sure to order extra length! 

 7. Try everything

From your food, to yor make up try, try, try! This way there will be no nasty surprises on the big day.

8. Don’t invite people to the bridal shower and not the wedding.

There is nothing worse than inviting people to your hen or engagement party and then when you don’t invite them to the big day they are left offended. Think clearly about who you invite to everything and plan ahead.

9. Don’t get overwhelmed or distracted by Pinterest

Pinterest is amazing but it can also be a curse! We can plan our ideal, dreamy, beach wedding on it but when it comes to actioning it, it probably isn’t feasible! Price everything and take notes. If you still want it 6-8 weeks after first seeing it, then do it.

10. Stick to the budget!

Get a wedding planner or organiser, total what you can afford on each area and stick to it (+10% of course, we are only human!). Budgets can be a downer but you will thank me when you aren’t heading on honeymoon Β£10k in debt! 

 

Tammie and David

I absolutely love brides that challenge the norm! Let’s be honest. In N.I. we very rarely travel far outside of the box and often things are kept pretty traditional. So when a bride comes along that challenges preconceived ideas I LOVE IT!

Tammie is definitely one of these brides. Being from Belfast, Tammie and her fiancΓ© David wanted to keep the Belfast vibe throughout their day. They held their wedding in the Ten Square Hotel whilst their photos were taken in the quirky Harp Bar and Duke of York. 

   

“I love skulls so they had to be included!”

Tammie’s dress was created by local dress maker Sonia Johnston whilst her bridesmaid dress was a bargain from Fresh Garbage!

One of the first things I noticed about Tammie’s pictures was the Vivienne Westwood additions. Not only were her beautiful red shoes by the designer but so were her necklace and earrings. 

    
    
   
Not to mention all her personal touches! With her table plan made using vintage suitcases and centrepieces made using bottles decorated by lace and broken jewellery the day was personal, quirky and budget friendly – everything a girl wants!  

 Check out the cake made by Tammie’s sister! 

 

Feather Shug by Biba in House of Fraser

Hair Accessory by Kittiekatastrophie

Hair by Malachy Weatherall 

Make up by Shona Kennedy 
Suits by Red, Belfast
Men’s shoes by Loakes from Reids, Belfast

Photography by Hollybrook

   
 

“We didn’t want over the top but wanted our personality to reflect the day”

Your day looked absolutely amazing and I wish you and your husband a lifetime of happiness!

Hayley Paige

Hayley Paige wedding gowns are definitely up their as some of my favourite of all time! 

Hayley Paige designs are the ultimate in femininity. These gowns incorpate a girls childhood dream wedding dress with a splash  of sparkle and edginess.  

 Each gown utilises some form of contrast in its materials. Whether it be soft tulle layers with sparkling straps or textured striped layers, each dress eludes total romanticism.  

 I first became obsessed with Hayley Paige after finding the “Dori” gown. The fluttering layers evoked a whimsical and romantic dream and I loved that they named each dress. It made each dress more personal and unique.

These flirty, feminine gowns evoke the dream of a girls childhood wedding whilst incorporating modern day sparkle and I love them. 

    
    
    
    
    
    
 

Eliza Jane Howell

Every few months I become OBSESSED with a new bridal wear designer. I don’t know how but before I know it I’m stalking their Instagram, Twitter and Facebook pages waiting for new images of “real brides” or their new collections. So what better way to deal with my stalkerish behaviour than to share my obsession with you all.

So here it is. My first ever indepth focus into a bridal wear designer and who better to start with than the Eliza Jane Howell collection. 

 Honestly everytime I’m on the Eliza Jane Howell Facebook page I can hear Sam Smyth’s “The Writings on the Wall” in the background. Her designs ooze glamour and sophistication from years gone by. 

Renowned designer Gill Harvey has brought together her years of experience to create the Eliza Jane Howell Bridal Collection.

Gill Harvey, a graduate of the Royal College of Art in London, is the creator behind the bridal collection which is named after her grandmother. The collection is “designed for the modern day bride who would love to wear a dress that oozes the glamour, sophistication and decadence of the golden age of fashion.”

These showstopping, dramatic gowns are perfect for the modern day bride who loves that vintage edge or for any bride longing to make a statement on her wedding day.

I. Am. Obsessed. 

    
   
“Taking inspiration from exquisite vintage gowns, the Eliza Jane Howell collection is the epitome of grown up glamour.” 

    
    
    
 

Price range Β£1,000-3,000

N.I. Stockists: Petticoat Lane Bridal, Hillsborough. Creative Ideas Bridal, Cookstown.