lthough we are firmly knee-deep of this cosy season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, my thoughts have been firmly turned towards spring and the weddings of next year by two key events:
1. The Luxury Wedding Show
- a fantastical wedding feast for the eyes. Featuring established and rising star wedding talent, suppliers and designers.
2. The number of 2012 weddings now being brought together by the team I am fortuitous enough to work among. Seeing them about their daily business of putting a wedding together cannot help but inspire and inform.
here's a whole new cast of spellbinding, accessible and inspiring trends on their way to reimagine the wedding in 2012 with personality and style.
If you are planning to wed next year - or, indeed are a late 2011 wedding looking for those final nuances to give your wedding that wow-factor - these are boxfresh ideas I predict will make weddings even lovelier...
Let me know your favourites Blog@Quintessentiallyweddings.com
Folkeloreish throwbacks to a simpler time - medieval handfastings
, wiccan blessings and humanist
Hymns that aren't really hymns: Kate Moss choir sang the Rolling Stones 'You can't always get what you want'
. The rule of thumb here is that most non-secular services will ask that you include one traditional reading and song, but there is room for the more unconventional as long as it is not blasphemous or inappropriate.
The 3 day wedding festivities: go big with a rehearsal supper, followed by the wedding day itself and a traditional wind-down Irish 'after' - each day is understated and makes the wedding more of an event. It's about spending real time with loved ones and friends who have travelled far and wide to share it with you. It evokes the spirit of great house parties past where a social group would retreat to a bucolic pile or city ball as an extraspecial occasion.
Real World Luxury: call me a over-prudent sort, but overawing glitter, ostentation and a tendency towards excess just doesn't feel right anymore.
Luxury now is about meaningfulness, taking the time to enjoy and the personal touch. Not unlike the integrity of the farm-to-table movement, or the baked potatoes and caviar of Natalia Vodianova's Love Ball and the Fillet Mignon and Frites served at a recent autumn wedding organised by the team because it was the couple's favourite supper, rather than it being all about impressing their guests. This is why I think more modest celebrations that are designed around everyone having a ravishing day in each other's company appeal more than ever. Image above courtesy of Shanna Jones
With the rise in the taking of high-tea and swoony pretty vintage tea-set hire companies (our favourite is Vicky Rowe's vintageteasets.co.uk
) we'll be seeing a lot more stylish tea-party orientated celebrations in place of costly sit-down dinners.
Iced Cider 'Champagne': a refreshing, cost-effective and delicate sparkler. Biddendens
newly launched fizz is perfect for a reception drink served in gold-trimmed coupes
Photobooths go 3D: recreate glamorous silverscreen moments with Photobooth-out-of-order.com
Give a winter wedding that Narnia, ethereal touch with the help of Snowbusiness.com
, who could make your tablecentres look as fantastical as these...
'Floating' embellished lace bodices at Mira Zwillinger
2012 collections make for an enchanting yet demure adornment. Stiched on to sheer ivory tulle, they make me think a little of ice-skaters costumes and nymphs. No bad thing.
Shapes and silhouette go fluid or airy ballgown - meaning both are as light as a feather and easy to wear.
Embellishment glittered as if woven from stars on gowns from Vivienne Westwood
and David Fielden at the Luxury Wedding Show catwalk show as styled by Conde Nast Brides
Plus, when our friends at Brown's Brides
showed us Vera Wang's
newest creations, fresh from the catwalk at New York Bridal week, my jaw audibly bumped the floor - not just because these gowns were the most beautiful ever from Vera, but most of the collection was in black (yes, black!).
The renaissance of the veil continues apace - look to Kate Moss' ethereal Juliet cap veil from Johanna Johnson
) or birdcage veils perched on pillarbox hats from Candy Anthony
for a little My Week With Marilyn old-school glamour.
Grooms go high-fashion: at Jimmy Choo's
new dedicated mens store at the Burlington Arcade. These shoes were made for sweeping a bride off her feet in.
The return of proper millinery - no more flightless birds or concoctions of fascinators please. Just good old-fashioned, handsome hats. Try Louis Mariette's
staggeringly glamorous numbers for size.
Thank goodness for the newy launched Maids to Measure
- a lovely gang of girls who understand adult bridesmaids wanting to look more fashion-forward like Pippa Middleton or Emilia Wickstead's bridesmaids as featured in Vogue, and less safe, staid second-fiddle to the bride.
Hair goes loose and childlike, and is a welcome antithesis to fussy excess. The gentle highlights are achieved using a technique called balayage, and hair is twisted around fingers when trying to create softly undone, innocent waves. Try the style at Daniel Hersheson
- and look at Kate Moss and Lily Aldridge for inspiration.
Master perfect skin (or the illusion of ) with Chanel's Vitalumiere Aqua
foundation, with the compact version set to launch early next year.
Will increasingly tend towards a little undone, natural beauty. There is a hint of the influence of the chivalric romance of the Language of Flowers (see Royal Wedding florist Shane Connolly
for more) and a shift away from unpragmatic hothouse flowers that dominate a room leaving guests playing peekabo around big, lusty displays as they cannot see those sat opposite!
Blooms evoke a woodland nymph mood as seen at Mulberry
, using native flowers such as Cornflower, baby's breath, Larkspur, garden roses, flowering herbs and interesting leafy foilage to create dell-like settings. Scarlet & Violet
lead the field here with their wild arrangements - pull up a chair and enjoy their pleasingly English book of Vintage Flowers
Also, note the rise of enchanting woodland weddings in established forests of ancient trees: Wasing
, Wise's Wedding Wood
or the National Trust's Nymans Gardens
Cotswolds countryside idylls will still be going strong - it must be something about the pale honey stone, corbels and scenery straight out of Thomas Hardy. The line-up boasts Thyme Southrop Manor
, Cowley Manor
, Babington House
, and Calcot Manor
Putting your own idiosyncratic stamp on things - literally - with monograms, interlocked thumb print hearts for your Save The Date cards, and Fiona Leahy
lace curtains woven with your initials.
The end is night for L-Plate, poor-taste hen dos. Click HERE
to read more about Cliff Barns
launches his astonishing calligraphy and stationary atelier early next year. Keep eyes peeled here...
See more catwalk images from the Luxury Wedding Show at our Flickr