Blood Red and Vampire Black - what a fabulously Gothic combination. So if you're thinking about getting married on 31st October 2016, take a look at some of these ideas for an atmospheric red and black Halloween wedding.
Set the scene right at the beginning with this wedding invitation from Zazzle - absolutely brilliant!
When you're planning the reception, think dark! I love these ideas from a couple of Dessy Style boards. Black ribbon on the nameplates, church candles on the tables with white and black petals strewn around them; yew and ivy as part of the decorations, both plants with magical connotations; black satin bags and shoes for the bridesmaids, red bag and shoes for the bride. Add the drama for the photos with a red backdrop, like the church with the red painted doors - what a great wedding photo that makes!
And as far as the flowers are concerned, you are almost spoilt for choice, particularly when looking at roses. I mean, do you go for the freshly spilt blood colour, or the darker, almost black crimson? Or if roses aren't your style, what about something like this bouquet below (courtesy of Pinterest), which includes all the shades of blood red imaginable? And then you could dress your bridesmaids in a variety of reds, which would look pretty stunning, and pair them with ushers in black morning suits with red satin waistcoats and ties to match the girls.
For your make-up, I'd got for smoky eyes and a pale complexion; for your lips, choose a long-lasting lipstick in the deepest of reds; and for your nails? It would have to be the appropriately named Vamp by Chanel, previously known as Rouge Noir as made famous by Uma Thurman in the 1990s cult classic, Pulp Fiction. And get that sultry attitude on for those photos!
But the most fun you'll have is choosing your food and drink, particularly the cocktails and wedding cake. You'll find great ideas on Pinterest, such as the blood red cocktails with black sugar at the top of the page, and the most fantastic red and black Halloween wedding cakes...I'm torn between the Black-iced Red Velvet cake and the 'Eat Your Heart Out' one below left - although the wedding cake below right with the brains spilling out at the top and the blood trickling over the layers is quite something too! Which would you choose?
Purple and black is a beautiful combination at the best of times, but when you consider it for an already emotionally-filled occasion like a wedding, it takes on a whole new level of drama.
The setting, the flowers, the cake, the lighting - all can look so fabulously theatrical and just call out for the bride and her girls to be dressed in the sumptuous satins, lace and velvets that such gothic colours demand.
What I like about the Bridesmaid dress Lela Rose LR192 in Majestic (above left) is that it is like a simplified version of the bride's superbly-skirted black gown (above centre) from WeddingDressFantasy.com, giving a natural cohesion to the two outfits. Even better would be for the bride to be wearing simple ballet slippers in a colour to match the bridesmaid's dress, like the Chelsea Ballet pumps from Dessy.
Or you could choose bridesmaid dresses that combine the two colours, like the ones I've picked out below. I have stuck to the glamorous satins as I think they work so well for a purple and black Halloween wedding.
From left we have Dessy Collection DC6718, Dessy Collection DC6708 and Alfred Sung D695.
But there are plenty of other awesome gowns to choose from, as you can see from this fab style board from the Dessy website...
And the flowers? Why not add in some black ostrich feathers and black lace ribbon for an extra Gothic touch; don't they just look awesome?
With thanks once again to the fabulous weddingdressfantasy.com for their magnificent bridal gowns.
So we looked at getting yourself a pashmina wrap for your wedding in time for when the Big Freeze hits the UK, but what about the footwear? Well, needless to say there is a fabulous selection of winter wedding boots out there so here are just a few worth pondering. Because there's no doubt about it, if you're feet are wet and cold, it's a lot more difficult to enjoy the best day of your life!
First up has got to be the Just Married Ugg Boots - they are sassy, fun and boy will they keep your feet warm no matter what the weather brings!
The next three are all from bridalshoesuk.co.uk which has a great selection of shoes as well as these fab boots. From the top we have Clara wedding boots which are currently on sale at a bargain price of £40 (better hurry for these before they sell out!). These fabulously sexy, knee-high boots are made from a brilliant white satin, with a winkle-picker toe and nineteen pairs of eyelets laced with a narrow satin ribbon - divine!
If your dress is in ivory, have a think about these stunning ankle boot shoes from Diane Hassall's Signature Collection. The shoe has a good height of 8 cm and a definite vintage feel to it. The pretty lace covers the entire silk satin upper and the ribbon is a delicate organza - a very romantic look all round.
Finally from bridalshoesuk.co.uk is another vintage-style shoe but this time in white leather with lace, so perfect for the winter weather. As romantic as the Diane Hassall one above, this 'Miranda' style from Lindsay May has lace decorated with leaves and flowers meeting the scalloped white leather - an exceptionally pretty and feminine winter shoe.
Well, having enjoyed an Indian Summer that we just weren't expecting, the British Media have decided to rain on our parade by announcing that the UK is going to be in the grips of a four-month Snow-Fest any moment now!
So if you are tying the knot in the next few months, order your Pashmina wrap now from Dessy so you won't be scrabbling around at the last moment on your wedding day trying to find something warm and beautiful to wear over your dress! As you would expect from Dessy, we take colours very seriously and so each pashmina wrap is custom dyed for flawless matching with Dessy dresses and accessories. They are the perfect blend of softness and warmth, being 40% silk and 60% the finest merino wool. At approximately 27" wide and 72" long (plus fringe), these lovely shawls will keep the chill off, without spoiling the lines of your chosen gown.
As the bride, you can play it two ways. You can go the exquisitely pale and delicate route by choosing Ivory, Palomino, Venetian Gold, Blush or Dove to wear:
Or you can go all out colourful - maybe with matching shoes like these heavenly Teal Dragonfly Kitten-heeled Sling-backs from my favourite specialist shoe designer, Mandarina.com.
or go complementary and EXTREMELY funky with these divine pink boucle ankle boots with purple lining (also from Mandarina.com £168) - perfect if the weather really does take a turn for the worse!
Of course, don't forget your bridesmaids and flower girls. At only £21, these silk and wool pashmina wraps will not only keep your girls warm but will make them feel very loved too on your special day. With dozens of colours to choose from, it's easy to find the perfect shade.
Shop on Dessy.com before those snow storms hit us!
Although autumn and winter can be dramatic seasons, they can also be very reflective months and once the brash late summer flowers have given way to fiery fall colours which in turn have also faded, there is a richness of understated beauty out there which should be reflected in a November to February wedding. And there can be no better way to do this than by employing the gentle elegance of subtle two toned bridesmaid dresses in soft hues. Today I have focussed on Lela Rose's LR223 from Dessy which, with its ten bodice colours and its 40 skirt options, can provide the perfect colour combo for each bridesmaid whilst still ensuring a beautifully cohesive vision.
The particularly clever point of this design is that the sleeveless rococo lace dress is itself quite a funky, after-party length, but it comes with a full length, crinkle chiffon shirred overskirt perfect for a wedding ceremony; two dresses for the price of one, no less! The lace catches the light delicately, much as the frost shimmers in the wintry moonlight, making it all the more appropriate for this time of year, whilst the sheer chiffon lends the gowns an almost ethereal charm of diaphanous femininity. I would definitely recommend this style to any girl who sometimes feels slightly awkward about her size; one cannot fail to feel dainty and floaty in this dress. And the colour options are divine!
Personally, I would choose the rococo lace dress colour to be the same for each girl, but each skirt would be unique. So in the image above, all three dresses are in Palomino, but the skirts are (clockwise from top left) blush, limeade and buttercup.
Below, the dresses are all in platinum with the skirts (again clockwise from top left) in regalia, larkspur and stormy; reminiscent of stormy winter sky - I feel you should have a snowy-white wedding if you chose these three colours for your bridesmaids!
You get quite a different look altogether when the dress is in Suede Rose - I love the richness of these pinks and purples with Radiant Orchid top left, Tutti Frutti top right and Wild Berry bottom centre.
And lastly, two toned dresses in Midnight lace which would be perfect for a wedding late in the day, when the sun is going down and the venue is lit by candles. The reception would be in an old hotel with roaring log fires, the food would be a rich beef stew served with heavenly claret, the flowers would incorporate deep blue ivy and viburnum berries and the deepest of crimson roses - glorious!
What colour combo would you choose for a winter wedding?
I came across a fashion advice column the other day where a Mother Of The Bride was asking for advice on Bridesmaid Dresses.
The Request: maxi length, preferably in mint green or silver, unfussy style
For Whom? Four twenty somethings, all slim, one being 5'11"
Budget: £200 for each dress
'Ah', I sighed to myself, 'if only she had come to me; I could have pointed her in the right direction at the drop of a hat.'
The Answer: Dessy.com
On the whole, Dessy bridesmaid gowns range from £150 to £230 and the best thing to do is to find your local stockist and make an appointment so that you can see the great quality for yourself. Or take a look at the Dessy website and have the incredible choice at your fingertips!
My first point to the MOTB is that maybe each of the four bridemaids chooses a different style dress, thus accommodating differing body shapes and sizes. But, for argument's sake, let's assume that the preference is for all of the girls to wear the same type; here is a selection of the options available from Dessy that come in extra length (recommended for anyone over 5'7"). Because people's ideas about colours vary immensely, I have included a variety of greens and greys that can be interpreted as mint bridesmaid dresses or silver bridesmaid dresses.
But like I said, these are just some of the options. If the bridesmaids can choose different styles, the world is their (silvery) oyster. Just take this exquisite soft tulle Celadon gown over platinum rococo lace giving a perfect mint AND silver effect all rolled into one. What more could one ask?
To view the many choices available, explore Dessy.com, of course! Happy shopping!
There will be some brides who will be lucky enough to inherit, borrow or even be gifted a pair of real diamond or pearl earrings on her wedding day. But, let's be honest here, not everyone has Cinderella's Fairy Godmother lurking around the corner! However, there's no denying (in my book at any rate) how appropriate and beautiful pearl and/or diamond earrings look on a bride. Which is why Dessy have come up with a lovely collection of faux diamond and sea pearl wedding earrings which look a million dollars and yet are actually very reasonably priced. I've collated some of the 'diamond' ones here for your perusal!
All the wedding earrings shown here are actually made of Cubic Zirconia, a low cost, synthetic material with a joyous likeness to real diamond. The earrings are set in brass-plated, hypoallergenic rhodium although it is still recommended to wear them once or twice before the wedding just to ensure that you don't have any reaction.
These faceted Princess cut earrings (above) give a classic and elegant appearance. The Princess cut is, nowadays, the second most popular cut shape for diamonds (after the 'round brilliant' cut). The face is square or rectangular with the profile similar to an inverted pyramid, lending plenty of sparkle to the earring - an absolute bargain at only £15!
The pretty drop earrings above feature brilliantly faceted solitaire cubic zirconias suspended in a bezel teardrop setting. The design captures perfectly the balance between a lot of sparkle whilst maintaining enough delicacy not to be bling - perfect for the modest bride and incredibly priced at only £22.
These stunning Empire Chandelier diamond wedding earrings below however would definitely suit a bolder or more statuesque bride who wanted to make more of a statement with her wedding jewellery. Amazingly, these hand-worked earrings are only £25.
I also love these cushion-cut earrings seen below - they are gorgeous, swinging sweetly from a rounded, bezel-set post, and definitely add a certain je ne sais quoi without being over-powering. The cushion-cut (which used to be called the 'old mine' cut) is a square with rounded corners, and has been around for two centuries. In fact, until the early 20th century it was the diamond shape: cushion cut diamonds tend to have more 'fire' than modern cuts, which is why they are still popular. Especially when you can get faux diamond ones like these for only £19!
And finally, if you'd rather go for a stud than a drop earring, these darling patterned studs have the added attraction of looking like you've inherited them whilst only costing £13 - you can't say fairer than that!
Whatever the pros and cons of having your dogs at your wedding, there's no doubt about it that the subsequent photographs are a hoot! Of course many venues won't actually allow you to bring your dog in for the ceremony itself, but that doesn't mean that your faithful hound can't be included in the photos before or after.
So forget all of the downsides of having your pet there on your big day and just enjoy some of these fab images - they might just persuade you that the risks are worth it, although I have to say that personally, I would NEVER trust my labrador not to eat a ring that has been placed on his nose!
With thanks to Anne Edgar Photography for the above great images.
Legend has it that Chihuahuas were bred to be used as hot water bottles by Mexican kings; they also make pretty sweet wedding accessories and have the advantage of wanting to be cuddled most of the time!
Thank you to Gia Canali for the adorable photo above.
From the sublime to the ridiculous, superbly captured by KT Merry photography above and below.
The chihuahuas are dinky in their pastel attire, but look how noble the fabulous hounds look below, resplendent in their garland collars!
And lastly, for all of you cat lovers out there, the non-plussed puss...
Thank you again to Anne Edgar Photography who has so aptly captured the ever-so-slightly-disdainful feline approach to human activities, even on her owner's wedding day!