Thursday, 26 March 2015

A day in wedding season by videographer Irene Piera

Continuing with our 'wedding season snapshots' series, we caught up with videographer Irene Piera to find out what a typical day in wedding season looks like for her...

The morning of the wedding is all about prep so I usually head over to film the bridal party while my partner in crime focuses on the boys. This is one of my favourite parts of the day, as I can always feel so much happiness and emotion in one room. I get to meet close family and friends and share such an intimate part of the day with them - it's through these moments that I truly get to know my couples and their relationship which helps shape my films into unique stories.
Once prep is over it's all go! Getting to the ceremony, introducing myself to the vicar or registrar and finding a good position to capture the entrance as well as the vows. The entrance is such a beautiful moment to watch back on video. I'm sure any married couples would agree that there's nothing quite like that moment when you see your other half at the other end of the aisle for the first time. I get goosebumps at every ceremony without fail! Once the ceremony is over it's time for confetti and filming of the guests congratulating and greeting the newlyweds.

Natalie & Martin:

Each reception is completely different but there's always mingling to be done so when the drinks and nibbles start flowing I love becoming a fly on the wall to capture so many different conversations and laughs. This is also the perfect time to film the table arrangements and all the lovely details as well as assessing where I can position myself to film those all important speeches. The guests are then seated and by this point I'm ready to film the bride and groom's entrance as they receive a roaring welcome from their loved ones. I then give my camera a rest and have something to eat before it's time to check sound levels in preparation for the speeches.  

Megan & Tom:

Shortly after, champagne glasses are filled and the speeches are announced. When there's two of us, we film from completely different angles to capture the speech and as many guest reactions as possible. It's amazing how quickly these go so we know how important it is for our couples to remember what was said as they are always such a meaningful part of the day.
After the speeches I usually whisk the couple away for a short time to capture some relaxed shots around the venue. I'm a hopeless romantinc so I love capturing these moments as they have the opportunity to take five minutes to chat and be excited together. Once finished, I quickly get everything ready to film the cutting of the cake and the first dance. These two parts always go in a flash and it's straight to the dancing, fun and partying. The perfect way to end an epic day!
Fiona & Rory:

 Make sure you visit Irene's stand at the Bridal Bazaar, Winchester Guildhall, 29 March, 11am-2pm!

Bridal Bazaar & Boot Sale This Sunday!

We can't wait to welcome you to our next event, join us 11am - 2pm for newly-weds selling pre-loved items in the Bridal Boot Sale, plus hand-picked suppliers, live music and fab workshops at the Bridal Bazaar - the wedding marketplace.

From photography to prop hire, wedding cakes and canapés - whatever stage of your wedding planning journey, there will be something that you just have to see at the Bridal Bazaar & Boot Sale at Winchester Guildhall!

For those first through the door we have welcome bubbles courtesy of Billecart-Salmon Rosé Champagne. There's live music via Live Lounge Band, Acoustic Together, plus you can learn DIY ideas and get inspired for your big day in the What Peggy Did Next Inspiration Station.

Of course, our organisers WPDN will also be presenting their hen party kits - fun-filled boxes packed full of stationery, bunting, badges, pom-poms, straws, drink stirrers and confetti in three unique designs.

Smallpiece Catering are back hosting our tea room and they'll be sharing their divine wedding cakes - don't miss head chef Ann in action with a canapés workshop.

You'll love the Exquisite Bridal Couture trunk show, showcasing Claire Pettibone's Romantique collection! Be sure to stop by their Facebook page for a daily sneak peek at the stunning dresses available in their sample sale too. 'Whistles at the ready ladies...!'

Peruse the stalls and pick up pre-loved bargains from our newly-weds, plus beautiful bespoke favours and gifts by Pretty Details. Also on offer is bridal jewellery and accessories by Victoria Fergusson, kid's occasionwear and bridesmaid's dresses by Eliza Mabel and fabulous prop hire from Little Old Goose.

We'll have décor ideas-a-plenty like light up letters from Doris Loves and via Belles and Whistles, along with their tutorial on stunning origami flowers. Crazily talented wedding photographer Angela Ward-Brown will be on-hand with her wondrous portraits and packages, whilst videographer Irene Piera will be presenting her dreamy filmmaking skills.

Award-winning Lydia Stamps Photography will share her exceptional approach to your big day and Laura Smith Flowers will be sharing a little DIY magic - learn how to make a flower crown, wreath and more!

Queen Bees will be ready to chat, offering sweet treats to shower upon your wedding guests, with Winchester's very own The Green Man showing how fabulous their wedding venue could look for your nuptials.

Enjoy all the fun of the fair with Classic Fete and the Crepe and Waffle Stop, while we can't wait to see Tom's Bespoke Bartending Co spring in to action (can we order our mojito now...?). Last but by no means least, Stella and Dot provide a little glamour to proceedings with their accessories collection.

All that and just £2 entry, kids go free!

Winchester Guildhall
The Broadway
SO23 9GH

Monday, 23 March 2015

Introducing Queen Bees

Here at Bridal Bazaar HQ we love a sweet treat, so we're delighted to introduce Queen Bees, who will be exhibiting at Winchester Guildhall on 29 March.

Here at Queen Bees we love to make all things yummy! From old school sweets to home baked cakes to our most popular item French Macarons. We can help you with something as simple as a gift to a loved one, crockery hire, sweet table creation, guest favours to providing a high tea for your wedding. We are known for our distinctive style and ability to make bespoke edible wedding items. We love a challenge by making new and exciting items, a day at Queen Bees is never boring!

Queen Bees started out as a hobby between two friends. Our children were all at school and we loved baking. We set about creating a high tea for our girlfriends, invited them round without any idea of what they were attending and ran the idea of creating this venture to them. It must be noted that at this point we didn’t have a name, it was after chatting to our friends that the name Queen Bees evolved! Queen Bees has changed over time due to one Bee emigrating to Australia but that doesn’t stop us talking together through new products, how to do things etc. And soon there will be a branch of Queen Bees in Perth!
So what do we offer to our customers? We are friendly, tailor all our products to your specific needs and try to make your day special in whatever way we can with any of the products or services we offer.

Currently we are being asked to provide lots of macaron favours, macaron towers, sweet favours and sweet tables. They seem to be popular for 2015 and 2016 looking at our diary. These are all made to order, colour and theme co-ordinated to each client’s requirements.

Introducing Little Old Goose

We can't wait to welcome Little Old Goose to the Bridal Bazaar at Winchester Guildhall. Lucy is the brains behind this wedding and event prop hire company, which has some of the most beautiful items to make your day look perfectly beautiful. We caught up with Lucy to find our more.

“At Little Old Goose you can find props, decorations and other fripperies for your special day. We have an extensive and ever expanding list of items available to hire at affordable prices. We understand that people want to have the great event without the big price tag. Here at Little Old Goose, we aim to keep costs down for you without compromising on quality.

"After planning my own Wedding last year, I didn’t want to part with all the lovely bits and pieces that I had taken so long to source and collect. I also really missed the amazing buzz planning a Wedding brings, so I created Little Old Goose!

We have some interesting and unique items including typewriters, bunting, chalkboards, baskets and tableware. As well as providing the props and decorations, we can also write the chalkboards and decorate your reception for you!

To see more, come and speak to Lucy at Winchester Guildhall, this Sunday 29 March, 11-2, and find our how she can help you plan your big day!

Friday, 20 March 2015

A day in the life of Exquisite Bridal Couture

We're thrilled to be welcoming Exquisite Bridal Couture to the Bridal Bazaar at Winchester Guildhall on 29 March. They'll be hosting an exclusive designer sample bring your Mum and your maids, and get ready to try on some simply stunning gowns.

We caught up with Exquisite's Natalie to find out what a day in their Winchester boutique looks like.

It's 8.30am on a Saturday morning and the team is in early to prepare for another busy day ahead.  Coffee's in hand we are busying ourselves making sure the boutique is sparkling clean, having a run through of the diary for the day and getting the fizz on ice.

We start the day in No.5 with a final fitting for a lovely bride on the iconic Esme gown by Jenny Packham.  Our seamstress has arrived to check all is just perfect.  Our bride glides through the boutique, the hem, dripping in bugle beads is now the perfect length for her Jimmy Choo's , the dress moves like liquid gold and our bride is beaming.  The wedding is next week so it's hugs and kisses as we carefully pack the dress and send her on her way to marry her beau.

Our next appointment is a bride at the start of her journey.  Recently engaged and marrying next year she is super excited but oh so nervous.  These emotions are so normal and we set to work putting her at ease and starting to select dresses that we think she'd like and that we know will suit her.  An hour and some oohs and aahs later we are in 'the favourite'.  A style from the new Romantique collection by Claire Pettibone.  Just perfect for her 'Wedstival' in the woods.  It's the first appointment and she's thinking "Do I do more shopping?" "Surely I can't find the dress on my first outing?".  With resounding "Yes" from all of her party she is super excited to be getting measured for her dream wedding gown.

Meanwhile across the way in our Bridal Party Boutique at No.6, we've a party of bridesmaids arrived for their tying session on the twobirds bridesmaids dresses.  The bride has a mixed colour palete so they've chosen a mix of Heather, Platinum and Blush colours for the day.  They all look so gorgeous.  We are busy tying away and getting the girls to practise on each other so that they don't have to bother the bride on the day. Nice to also see the 8 month pregnant bridesmaid just positively blooming in her twobirds dress.  Happy times!

Nearly lunchtime and we're flagging and so a quick bite to eat from our eaterie next door and we are fully charged again.  Next to come and see us is a bride who has put off the search for her dress and is now only two months away from the date. No need to worry - we try some of our samples for sale but none are quite hitting the mark.  Not to fear! One of our new designers to Exquisite, Catherine Deane has a beautiful range of dresses that are available for immediate delivery....amazing!  We try Laverne and our bride screams with excitement.  Done, dress found and it will be delivered to us next week. 

Mum is now keen to see what we offer for Mother of the Bride so we scoot over to No.6 and try some styles from our bespoke range. One hour later and we've designed and sketched out a plan for a 3 piece outfit.  A super chic shift dress with a relaxed fit 3/4 sleeve midi coat for the day.  Then a little beaded lace shrug to wear in the evening.  All in a soft blush pink, accented with a dove grey hat from Vixen by Vivien Sheriff.  Success!

A few more glowing brides later, and it's almost 7pm.  Where did the day go?  It's now time to clean up and toast ourselves with a sneaky glass of fizz before home. 

Sitting on the sofa later that evening and a ping on my phone brings me to a lovely message on our Facebook page from one of our brides today. I smile and think how wonderful it is to work in the wedding industry.

Introducing...Classic Fete

We're introducing another of our fabulous suppliers today, who are guaranteed to bring the fun to your big day (and to the Bridal Bazaar!). Classic Fete is the perfect centrepiece to any wedding bringing their nostalgic fete activities - think hook a duck, high striker, and Bride and Groom head through hole!

We caught up with them to find out what wedding season looks like for them.

"At Classic Fete, a typical day during the exciting wedding season is full of laughs and games! We love travelling across the beautiful south with our trailer full of the amazing games that create the Classic Fete's charm.  For a wedding, our day will start with the adventure of discovering new and beautiful wedding venues with stunning grounds fit for our games! One of our favourite parts of the day is setting up the fete, pulling out all the pretty bunting and building the look to suit the Happy Couple's vision.  It is so inspiring to watch all the suppliers working together and the venue preparing for the beautiful day... A real honour to be chosen in such a special event!

"Of course, after the ceremony - the main event for Classic Fete is the arrival of the newlyweds and their treasured guests! We adore watching everyone mingle, laugh, play and compete! The layout of the Fete is designed to create a space for all the guests to mingle together, with room to chat or play!
It shapes and keeps a fun, friendly atmosphere which we never tire of being a part of. 

"Once the games are over and the food, booze and of course speeches begin we peacefully pack away the Classic Fete, with blissful memories of another wonderful Wedding. We treat every event as if it were our own special day with attention to detail and care."

Make sure you stop by to see Classic Fete at the Bridal Bazaar on Sunday 29 March, at Winchester Guildhall, to have a go for yourself!! Doors open at 11am!

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Introducing...Pretty Details handmade and bespoke wedding favours and accessories

Today we're introducing another of our fabulous suppliers who will be setting up shop at The Bridal Bazaar on Sunday 29 March at Winchester Guildhall. We caught up with Samantha from Pretty Details to find out more...

"Pretty Details creates and makes handmade and bespoke wedding favours and accessories for your wedding day.  Using papercraft, stamping, ribbons and die-cutting we create a unique, themed,, hand-crafted favour based around your wedding theme and colours.

"I started Pretty Details whilst I was planning my own wedding.  I found that favours and little finishing details were either mass produced or just not quite right for my wedding.  So, I took it upon myself to create 3 favour boxes for each guest, homemade elderflower vodka and also 2 mini homemade Jams!  Slightly excessive perhaps - But I had so much fun, that the thought of never doing it again made me feel sad!  So, I decided I would do it again - For other people! and I love it, it's so special being able to make a bride's ideas come to life and create things that were never expected, or even thought of.

"My wedding was in a barn so I themed everything with pastel and neutral shades, but I've found this year that brides are becoming more daring, using red's and purples along with Great Gatsby theming, diamante's feathers etc.  So, I've been taken out of my comfort zone somewhat and found that by broadening my colour palette and collection and  adding a little more bling I have been able to offer even more to my bespoke range.  It has even influenced a completely new 'luxe' range which I absolutely adore and will be show-casing at the Bridal Bazaar.

Don't miss Pretty Detail's stall at Bridal Bazaar on Sunday 29th March at Winchester Guildhall. Doors open at 11am!

Monday, 16 March 2015

A typical day in wedding season by Lydia Stamps Photography

Continuing our series of 'wedding season snapshots', we quizzed award-winning photographer Lydia Stamps on what a typical day in the office is like for her come wedding season...

07.30am Get up and make a cuppa, check my emails respond to new enquiries & send out pricing brochures.

8.30am Start editing a collection of eight hundred wedding photographs.

11.30am Have a coffee break and a piece of toast, chat to some photographer friends in online forums.

11.45am Submit a wedding to a blog

12.15pm Package up wedding photographs into a box including a usb of images, some chocolates & a few prints. Write a note to the bride and groom to pop into the package.

12.30 Walk to the post office to post the USB and an image release form for Wedding Ideas Magazine for an upcoming feature.

1pm Nip to the bank to pay in some wedding deposits for new bookings for weddings taking place next year and collect some prints from the printer. 1.40pm Check up on emails again. Schedule an engagement shoot.

2pm Return to editing the wedding I started earlier today.

3.30pm Have a mug of soup, browse social media and catch up on my favourite wedding blogs.

4.15pm Put on batteries to charge and format memory cards for a shoot tomorrow.

4.30pm Work on a second draft of a wedding album. Upload the design to my online proofing area and send it to the couple for approval for print.

6pm Have a Skype chat with a couple interested in booking me for their wedding next year.

8pm Meet one of my couples at the pub for a drink and a catch up to go over their timings, schedule and photography plan for their wedding day next month.

9pm. Head home. Collapse onto the sofa and watch Game of Thrones/House of Cards/Mad Men with my husband and our cat.

Don't miss Lydia's stall at Bridal Bazaar on Sunday 29th March at Winchester Guildhall. Doors open at 11am!

Introducing...Eliza Mabel

We're delighted to welcome Eliza Mabel to The Bridal Bazaar on Sunday 29 March, showcasing their bespoke handmade clothing for children.

We caught up with owner Cheryl to find out more about how she started Eliza Mabel...

Photo by Jenny Owens Photography

"Eliza Mabel is an online retail store specialising in clothing for children’s special occasions - everything from Christenings to flower girls and bridesmaids. We love all things pretty! All our clothing is all hand made to order in the UK, and we make every dress to your bespoke requirements.

"I started Eliza Mabel after my own wedding and struggling to find the right dresses for my young daughter at the time, I wanted something a little different but still keeping it traditional, which was hard to find except for the high street stores. So I thought I would look at other businesses specialising in the area. After months of researching and looking for suppliers Eliza Mabel was born. The range is designed with comfort, style and practicality in mind. When your dresses little ones you want them to look super cute, but you also want them to be comfortable and its these key elements we feel are very important.

Photo by Shots Photography

"I always promote less is more, it’s easy to get carried away but often the small details make an outfit, from a small splash of colour, to a cute pair of shoes. It doesn’t have to be much but it’s important to get it right. So think of your theme, your dress and see what works within your colour pallet. We supply free colour swatches to all our clients so they can match and see what works best with their colour theme.

"All our designs and details can be found at "

Thursday, 12 March 2015

A typical day during wedding season - by bridal accessories designer Victoria Fergusson

We're thrilled to be welcoming bridal accessories designer and make up artist Victoria Fergusson to the Bridal Bazaar at Winchester Guildhall on 29 March.

We caught up with her recently, to find out what a typical day during wedding season looks like for her...

Fuelled by tea and toast I take the very short commute from my kitchen to my home studio,
which is a lovely bright room with doors that open out onto the garden.

I’m a compulsive list maker and the first thing I do is take a look through the notes of to-do’s
I scribbled the previous day, I’ll probably add more jobs! Email is checked and anything
pressing is dealt with, but rather than get distracted by too much admin I like to get beading.
I’ll either continue with an order that requires finishing or start on something new in the
order book. I can happily bead uninterrupted for hours, and this is how I really love to spend
my time, but there’s always that to-do list demanding my attention too.

After a short break for lunch I will aim to tick a few things off my list…. Such as ordering stock of crystals from Swarovski and freshwater pearls from my suppliers, washing my make-up brushes in
preparation for the weekends wedding, and packaging up orders ready for posting.

By now my dog Bonington is looking at me accusingly, so I’ll head out for a walk with him. I
find I have some of my best creative ideas when we’re out walking. Things will start to
combine in my head, elements of the projects I’ve been working on together with thoughts
of new crystals I couldn’t resist ordering from Swarovski! By the time we get back from
my walk I’m reaching for my sketch book to scribble ideas for new designs.

I’ll squeeze in more beading and admin before heading to the post office with parcels that
will wing their way to their respective brides and bridal boutiques.

Lastly, I’ll take a look through my diary and check what’s coming up over the next few days;
accessory appointments, make-up and hair consultations, weddings….  All the while adding
things to my to-do list!

A Day in the Life of a Wedding Photographer: The Wedding Day by Angela Ward-Brown

2am: Wake up in a panic that you have overslept and your bride & groom are at this very minute wondering where you are.  Check clock. 2am. Go back to sleep.

3am:  Aaaarrrggh!  Same. Ok, fine.

6am: Suddenly you can’t remember if you charged all your batteries last night. Run downstairs & check. You did.  All fine.  May as well get up as you have woken dogs/cats/children/partner and you remember your mother telling you to ‘go to work on an egg’. She may have stolen this line from an advert.

7am:  Decide that bringing along a pair of antlers, a lightsabre & a confetti cannon might be a good idea, just in case.

9am: Drink a coffee before heading out.  You are leaving way too early, but the spectre of the M25 being like the seventh circle of hell is always there.  Only the bride gets to be late for her wedding.

10am:  Arrive at the getting ready venue & put on harnesses, bags & other implements to save your shoulders from the next 9 hours of lugging equipment.  Reflect, not for the first time, how you look like a show pony. Just not a winning one.

10.30am:  Head into the bride’s house & introduce yourself to the family. This is the best time. You get to see all human life in close up: pride, nerves, tears, stress, laughter, and so much darn love. And then you get to make pictures of it so no one can forget what it felt like to sit with their best friend, at 11.21am on the morning of their wedding, and laugh at some silly card, or cry at a gift, and feel the beautiful weight of those years of friendship. You also get to take pictures of the bride (or groom) & her (or his) friends looking damn fine, and occasionally offer advice, smooth over worries, fix hair pins, and use that crochet hook you keep in your bag to do up 4 million buttons.

12.15am: Jump in car & head to ceremony, just ahead of bride.  Stomach is starting to rumble now.

12.30am: Chat to vicar or registrar about where they are happy for you to stand.  This differs wildly between officiants - some say you can do whatever you like, some won’t let you past the doors, so it is always worth your couple checking with your vicar/celebrant beforehand. You make a point of not moving around much so you don’t draw the eyes of the congregation, but you are aware that some vicars especially have had to deal with some very poor behaviour from photographers, so you are as sensitive as possible when you do have to move.

12:45:  Get shots of the bride arriving & the groom looking nervous. Then head into the church to await the big moment.

1pm:  You are suddenly aware that you are being stared at by a chorister, you may have been joining in with ‘Jerusalem’ a little too enthusiastically.  Concentrate on being photo ninja.

1.30pm:  Marshall the congregation in time for the confetti toss. Check for non-biodegradable confetti as per church warden’s instructions.  Advise bride & groom that despite what their brains are telling them, confetti won’t hurt, so try to open their eyes occasionally :). Take candids, concentrate especially on older guests who might decide not to come to the reception. Ask small freckled child not to put confetti in your lens changer bag.

1.40pm: Smile indulgently at small freckled child as he puts more confetti in your bag. Whisper that the next time it happens, it will automatically trigger his mandatory attendance at your 45-minute lecture on the history of soft cheese, to take place during that really fun time when the DJ sets up, before the adults reach the dance floor.

1.45pm: back to car to head to the reception.  Very hungry now, grab emergency Penguin biscuit from bag.

2.30pm: Group photos time.  Mentally hug your couple, because they followed your advice and kept the group photo list to under ten pictures.  Chase down an errant great uncle who has gone for a look around the gardens, and someone’s brother who is changing a nappy somewhere.

2.50pm: Candids - This is the time to get the images that the bride & groom love to see; the things they missed as they moved around their guests.  Kids climbing trees, friends in stitches because of the wine magician doing his stuff, granny eating ice cream. Worship the ground the waiter walks on as he offers you a cold Coke. Yes please. So much yes. Also shoot the room set up, a few extra groups requested by families, and some shots of the venue.

4pm: The wedding breakfast. Photograph the entrance of the bride & groom & some general atmosphere shots, then take your aching feet away and take your break. Order a meal from the bar menu (thank you bride & groom!) and check your shots, back up cards, cool down, eat & watch your feet swell. 

6pm: Speeches! Shoot the speeches, striking a fine balance between being able to get the shots and  not making any guest have to stare at your backside for too long.

7pm: Take your couple away into the gardens for a little while as the sun is beginning to set, to get those lovely sun-kissed shots, which does happen fairly regularly in Summer. Even in Britain.

8pm: First dance. Set up any required flashes, light stands, advise the DJ to turn off those pesky pinpoint lasers (NEVER an attractive look), aim to shoot some epic shots in the 3.5 seconds before the self-conscious couple call their friends onto the floor, then…

8.10pm Party time! Try not to be crushed as everyone piles on to the dance floor, simultaneously shooting whilst protecting your camera from imminent shape-throwing disaster.

8.45pm Hug & thank bride & groom, with whom you are a little in love with after spending such a kick-ass day with them, and stumble back to the car.

10pm: Arrive home, greet the people who live in your house, slope off to the office to download your cards because you won’t be able to get a wink of sleep until you know they are backed up in three different places. Consider the next few days of editing & emailing & preparing, ready to do it all again next week. Smile. 

Monday, 2 March 2015

Introducing Tom's Bespoke Bartending Co.

We're really excited to introduce the first of our suppliers for the first Bridal Bazaar, being held at Winchester Guildhall, on 29 March 11am-2pm.

If your looking for a bar service for your big day, then look no further - we're pleased to be introducing Tom's Bespoke Bartending Co. With a passion for outstanding service, and incredible drinks, owner Tom knows a thing or two about creating a perfect bar experience. We caught up with him to find out all about his bespoke service. Over to Tom...

Tom’s Bespoke Bartending Co. supply the professional bar service for your special event. Our mission is to deliver outstanding service and incredible drinks, at an affordable price. We can provide bars for any event or occasion with bespoke packages tailored to your requirements. As a family run business we really go above and beyond to make your bar experience the best it can be. Some of the events we work include Birthdays, Weddings, corporate and Anniversaries. 

About Tom
"I have a huge passion for bartending and an extensive history in events, hospitality and mixology. I have always been a bartender and have had the pleasure of working in many of the finest bars in Dorset. I started Tom's in 2014 with the vision of providing a completely different service to those mobile bar companies already out there. I wanted to build my own unique bar and serve high quality products, as many as possible from Dorset. I strive to give the ultimate service at each and every event we attend."

Come and meet Tom and see his amazing bar in action at the Bridal Bazaar, Winchester Guildhall, 29 March, 11am-2pm.