30th July 2014

When a designer grows up by the sea, surrounded by the best that nature has to offer, it’s really no surprise their designs have an organic beauty about them that is quite simply breathtaking. This is certainly true of Olwen Bourke’s delightful gowns and today, we’re so thrilled to be able to give you a look at her latest designs as well as taking a peek into her world…

Olwen bourke, nature inspired wedding dresses

Olwen Bourke began her design career with a couture dance dress company in London, working on stunning gowns for dancers including the stars of Strictly Come Dancing and the balletic heroines of the Royal Opera House. Having fallen completely in love with making one-off dresses that were personal, unique and always designed with a special occasion in mind, Olwen took the plunge and launched her own label in 2012 and straight away, brides were smitten.

Olwen bourke, nature inspired wedding dresses

Olwen bourke, nature inspired wedding dresses

We are, we must admit, smitten too. The organic shapes, the recurring themes of shells, leaves, plants and other natural motifs are such subtle showstoppers that you just can’t look away.

Olwen says she designs for ‘the modern woman who doesn’t buy into the frou-frou princess look’ and we just love the confident, contemporary lines that combine so wonderfully with the delicate details that just demand to be adored.

Olwen bourke, nature inspired wedding dresses

Olwen bourke, nature inspired wedding dresses

If Olwen Bourke’s signature bridal style mixes femininity with the romantic and the ethereal, she also makes her mark by including delightful heirloom details into gowns and she is a true devotee of ethical fashion. As well as re-working elements taken from treasured family gowns into new pieces, she can also work with an element from a mothers or grandmothers gown and incorporate a frill, a fabric or a snippet of lace and include it into a new design. This gives Olwen’s incredibly lucky clients the opportunity to combine their own style with their cherished family history – something old and something new all in one amazing bridal gown.

Olwen bourke, nature inspired wedding dresses

Spending her days in her London studio, surrounded by silks, tulles, laces and all manner of embellishments, Olwen will work with you closely to make absolutely sure that the finished design and your finished dress is everything you imagined it would be and you have the added reassurance of knowing exactly where you dress is being made.

Provenance aside, how wonderful it will be to have a gown that is totally styled around your natural shape in such a wonderful environment – an incredibly beautiful relationship in our opinion!

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30th July 2014

Oh WOW! This is the most gorgeous wedding Love My Dress readers, in a stunning location with perfect weather. Amy rocks a pre-loved 50′s frock covered in sequins, in which she looks a total knockout. I adore how the sparkle of the dress mirrors the sun sparkling off the sea, and the bronze colour is just perfect against the grey cliffs and golden sand. All this wonderful refracted light is captured on camera by Sarah Falugo. The select few invited to Amy and Russell’s wedding on 14th September 2013 celebrated at The Scarlet Hotel, Mawgan Porth, Cornwall…

“Our venue was our main source of inspiration – we fell in love with The Scarlet  the minute we looked at the website. We went to Cornwall and half heartedly booked viewings at other venues but The Scarlet had our hearts before we stepped foot in there. It’s heavenly and just so relaxing and luxurious. We had a small wedding (16 people) and wanted to create a day that felt like a gorgeous relaxed Cornish dinner party that just happened to include a wedding ceremony. Everything was planned to ensure the guests felt as relaxed, comfortable and spoiled as possible.”

Photography Copyright (c) 2014, Sarah Falugo

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Amy, a lingerie merchandiser and Russell, a network and security engineer, met whilst working for Monsoon Accessorize.

“We were friends who bonded over a mutual love of a Friday fry up before any romance developed. Russell pulled off an amazing surprise proposal at my stepdads 60th birthday party. When he asked my mum for permission to propose my stepdad asked him if he would mind doing it at his birthday meal so that the family could be there too – Russell agreed and my stepdad had no idea that the ‘meal’ was actually a front for a surprise birthday party with over 150 of our friends and family.”

sarah falugo, cornwall weddings, fur coat no knickers, the scarlett hotel

When my stepdad got up to say a few words at the party he finished by saying – ‘and there is someone else who has a few words to say’ – out popped Russell holding my pink ukulele (which I was annoyed about initially as I’d told him not to play with it – such a bossy mare) and he proceeded to sing me the song from the Wedding Singer movie ‘I Wanna Grow Old With You’, then got down on one knee at the end and had my engagement ring on his little finger.

I was so surprised I forgot to actually say yes for about 5 minutes – very brave boy! We were engaged for nearly 2 years as we saved up for the whole wedding shindig ourselves.”

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“My dress was from Fur Coat No Knickers who specialise in vintage. It’s from the 1950’s and FCNK customised it to ensure a perfect fit and tailor the silhouette for my body. I also had a custom petticoat to add volume – also from FCNK.”

“I had tried on a few ‘new’ dresses but was hooked on the feel of vintage. I liked the idea of another bride having loved the dress before me, that it had history. When I first went into FCNK I thought I wanted lace and originally said no sequins as I thought I wanted a more classic look. On reflection this was a bit crazy as I am obsessed with anything sequinned, beaded or sparkly! Then the girls at the shop asked me to try ‘the Disco Dress’ on as they wanted to see it on someone – I never considered it would be my dress. I popped it on to humour them but as soon as it was on I felt like I just wanted to dance and twirl like a five year old – I was sold!! It was the perfect dress for me; fun, quirky and  it made me feel like a bombshell. I didn’t want a dress that I couldn’t move, eat or climb down to the beach in.”

sarah falugo, cornwall weddings, fur coat no knickers, the scarlett hotel

“I very naughtily cancelled another florist as I fell so hard in love with the style of Suzanne at The Blue Carrot and her amazing flowers. I came across her work in Unique Bride magazine and it was exactly what I wanted – delicate, natural and slightly wild. Suzanne became one of my favourite people, she is so crazy talented and creative and also very honest with feedback so you can trust her completely. It’s worth following her on Facebook as her work will make your newsfeed super pretty. I gave her a rough idea of colours and flowers I liked and let her work her magic.

As we had only one dining table we could really go for it on the flower front – I am so glad I didn’t have to par anything back when it came to flowers. I adored my bouquet so much I would not put it down all day.”

sarah falugo, cornwall weddings, fur coat no knickers, the scarlett hotel

The bride and groom chose Sarah Falugo as their photographer. I love the way that she has captured the essence of the location; the unique, crystalline light of the beach and all the wonderful textures used throughout the wedding. 

“Sarah was incredible throughout – I hate having my picture taken but Sarah’s relaxed approach meant it was easy on the day – she was endlessly patient with Russell and I when we kept getting the giggles and messing about. She is so warm and friendly she felt like an additional guest, who just happened to take awesome pictures!”

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29th July 2014

One of the best things we’ve noticed about weddings of the past few years are the grooms as we’ve been happily admiring the wide range of outfits that the guys are now wearing on their wedding day. Gone are the endless images of faintly embarrassed looking grooms in pastel cravats and identikit suits (thank God!).  Instead, we’re smitten with the tweed, handmade suits and all the accessories that style savvy grooms are now choosing.  We all know that when it comes to weddings, personality and individuality rule and we love it when a groom is confident enough to make his own personal style statement.

On that note, we’re delighted today to introduce you to Al’s Musique Boutique, a one-stop shop for the creative groom, the urban dandy and the utterly dapper chap.

Photography Copyright (c) 2014, The Twins

groom style, gentlemans emporium, al's musique boutique, newcastle groom shops, the twins photography

As a vintage style enthusiast himself, Al wanted to open a boutique that he would be happy to shop in himself  – somewhere that would stock a huge range of brilliant products and be a welcoming, friendly place to visit.

groom style, gentlemans emporium, al's musique boutique, newcastle groom shops, the twins photography

Describing his own style as ‘eclectic Gentleman with a hint of scallywag’ (we love!), Al is passionate about ensuring that the vintage items he sells are in the best condition, ensuring that pieces are perfectly cleaned and precisely repaired when needed.

groom style, gentlemans emporium, al's musique boutique, newcastle groom shops, the twins photography

Al also offers tailoring and alterations, services that are so valuable if you’ve found a vintage gem that doesn’t quite fit or if you’ve been passed an heirloom that just needs a few adjustments to give it the new lease of life it deserves.

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29th July 2014

Hello fabulous readers of Love My Dress. My name is Tamryn and I would like to confess to you today that I am, indeed, a stationery addict. I adore all things paper – I write letters and send cards to friends and family for no real reason, I am drawn to stationery shops like a bee to a fully blooming flower and I can’t even begin to contemplate a new project until I have a new notebook to go with it. However, I know that I am not alone with this obsession.

I know that lots of you are just like me and the sight of some paper pretty will brighten your day in the same way it brightens mine. So rejoice because today, I’m so happy to introduce you to the fabulous work of British stationery company Hip Hip Hooray.

Hip Hip Hooray wedding stationery

From their pretty pom-pom filled studio in heavenly Devon, husband and wife team of Jenny and Emiko and their small design team, design, print and provide gorgeous, stylish and affordable wedding stationery to couples right around the world.

Hip Hip Hooray wedding stationery

They have both been in the stationery business for years but launched Hip Hip Hooray when they realised that there was a need for beautiful stationery that could be delivered quickly and at a price people can afford. “We knew first hand about good looking stationery,” says Jenny. “But we realised design can be a lengthy process and sometimes, timescales, budgets and design don’t align.”

Hip Hip Hooray wedding stationery

And so Hip Hip Hooray was born – a stationery company that has lots of fun with their designs and also allows clients huge flexibility. You can print your own or order printed pieces, select wording, mix and match collections and even use innovative online technology to be able to customise designs instantly via the Hip Hip Hooray website.

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29th July 2014

I may be wrong, but I do believe we have a Love My Dress first. Today I bring you a wedding at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, widely considered to be one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. Many of us could only dream of such a grand venue and I imagine that, for bride and groom Alys and Simon, the sense of history inside those walls made the ceremony all the more magical.

The wedding of design manager Simon, and procurement manager Alys took place in March 2014.

Our ceremony was held at the OBE Chapel in the Crypt at St Paul’s Cathedral, and we had our reception at the Assembly Rooms in Stoke Newington. As a London girl I can’t imagine anywhere more beautiful to spend your wedding day.  We didn’t want a theme per se, but we knew we wanted to mix the elegance of St Paul’s with the quirky beauty of London town. We wanted a spring, vintage London wedding, with handmade elements and a North West twist – to ensure both of our roots were celebrated!

The day was more than we could have ever hoped for and our photographer Nicola Milns captured many magical (and some hilarious) shots to remind us just how wonderful our wedding was.”

Photography Copyright (c) 2014, Nicola Milns

stephanie allin, st pauls cathedral wedding

“I fell in love with the TwoBirds bridesmaid dresses in charcoal grey and knew how stunning they would look on my girls. The flower girls looked like little princesses in ivory tutu dresses and faux fur ivory boleros with real flower circlets in their hair.”

stephanie allin, st pauls cathedral wedding

“My dress was the first thing I purchased. The Stephanie Allin Bardot dress and Jasmin shrug were stunning. After seeing my Ma’s reaction when I first tried it on I knew it was the one.”

stephanie allin, st pauls cathedral wedding

“I loved the deep ivory colour of the dress, it was so pretty and flattering. The lace was the finishing touch and made me look really beautiful and regal. I bought it from Stephanie’s London store in Chiltern Street and would recommend it to all brides – the girls are wonderful and so much fun! Stephanie herself was there for some of my appointments and really looked after me.”

stephanie allin, st pauls cathedral wedding

stephanie allin, st pauls cathedral wedding

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