Cwtch of the Week: Cwtch the Father of the Bride

Rebecca and Michael got married at Peterstone Court, Brecon on the 29th of December. This gorgeous cwtch by Anderson Photography was taken before the ceremony. Rebecca’s dad Maldwyn has swooped in for a big cwtch with mam Lisa looking on.

Rebecca tells us “We aren’t a really cwtchy type of father and daughter – so this cwtch is even more special!”

Cwtch of the Week Submission Rebecca MorganRansom

Thank you for your submission Rebecca!

Real Wedding: Zoe & Daniel’s Bright Colourful Wedding by Catherine & Angharad

Today’s fabulous colourful wedding was submitted by the fabulous Catherine & Angharad Stylish Wedding Photography. Zoe and Daniel got married in September in two fabulous Swansea venues: The Lord Mayor’s Reception Room in Brangwyn Hall followed by The Patti Pavillion. As always we asked Zoe some questions about their big day.


How would you describe your wedding theme? I wanted loads of colour, smarties and rainbows, colourful, fun, fun, fun and more fun.

WeddingW14_J154_560 W14_J154_563What was your favourite part of your wedding? Apart from the ceremony and marrying Dan, the surprise for our first dance was such good fun and seeing our daughter Annabel dancing her socks and enjoying the day as much as we did was so special.


Tell us about your Wedding Dress I always had a style in mind and had never seen anything anywhere that I liked. A family friend offered to make a dress for me, so I sent her loads of photos of dresses I loved, from couture to evening dresses, and I circled the bits I loved the most. She took the best bits from the photos and designed me a bespoke wedding dress. I loved it so much she made mini one for our flower girl, our daughter Annabel.

WeddingW14_J154_527 WeddingWeddingWho did you pick as your bridesmaids &/or best man and why? We kept it all family really, our amazing 2 old Annabel was our flower girl, Dan’s sister Lauren was our bridesmaid and Dan’s brother Oliver was our best man. Dan’s two little boys Morgan and Tommy were ushers with his oldest friend James. My brother Rhidian and his girlfriend Zoe were our witnesses.

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Why did you choose your venue? I’ve always loved the Patti Pavilion, it’s a beautiful building, near to the beach with stunning views, and big enough to hold loads of people for a big party in the night. It’s location was perfect for us as it was right opposite the Guildhall, we got married in the Lord Mayor’s Reception, so we could all walk through Victoria park to the Patti, this is where some of our favourite wedding photos were taken. Plus it was an easy venue for everyone to get to and from.

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How did the proposal happen? It was Valentines Day last year, we’d decided not to buy anything for each other and to have a meal at home. Dan cooked us a fabulous 3 course meal and as I was about to do the washing up I turned to see Dan with a little black box. After telling him off for buying me something, I was soon speechless and shaking like a leaf, in the box was a stunning engagement ring and he asked me to marry him. After removing my rubber gloves to put the ring on my finger and once I’d stopped blubbing and pulled myself together I said yes. It was a total shock and a day I’ll never ever forget.


Any DIY stories/tutorials you’d like to share? I did quite a lot myself, but my favourite was the table decorations that I made myself, loads and loads of paper flowers in all the brightest colours I could find. I learned how to make different styles from tutorials on youtube. Our house was full of them.


What was your first dance & why? I organised a surprise as both of us are not great dancers and weren’t looking forward to doing the first dance. We got to the dance floor and started to shuffle round to Soul Mate by Natasha Bedingfield, when in came a samba band, La Gente, with drums and whistles blowing lead by a fantastic Brazilian dancer. They really stole the show and took the attention off me and Dan, perfect. Although it didn’t take too long for my 2 year old daughter Annabel and Ted another 2 year old to take the shine off the professionals by taking over the dancing, definitely a precious and memorable moment.


In hindsight, was there anything you would have done differently? In hindsight we’d have got married earlier in the day, so that we would have had more time to see everyone.


Do you have any advice for future couples? Time goes very quickly and it’s hard to spend time with everyone including your new husband, make sure to take time out together and take in everything.


What was your favourite thing about planning a wedding? I didn’t really think much about the planning, I organise a lot of events for a living, but knowing I was organising our big day made it all the more exciting. Also, because the first dance was a surprise I was looking forward to seeing everyone’s faces.

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The Suppliers

Photographer: Catherine from Catherine & Angharad
Ceremony Venue: Lord Mayors Reception 
Reception Venue: Patti Pavilion
Bride’s Dress: Made by a family friend
Bride’s Shoes: Vivienne Westwood
Groom’s Outfit: Next
Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Moschino
Cake: M&S
Flowers: Julie (a very talented friend)
Hair: Emma at M.Noir Salon
Make Up: Jinty Day
Band: La Gente and The Edge
Other: Massive thanks to my amazing Mum and Dad who made the day all possible.

The Wedding Album

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Thank you Catherine & Angharad for sharing this fabulous wedding with us! Catherine & Angharad will be joining us at CWTCHFEST, for information and tickets click on the big yellow button!


Wedding Film: Jenna & Jason’s Rosedew Farm Wedding

Jenna & Jason got married last year at the beautiful Rosedew Farm, you may recognise them from this Cwtch of the Week. Today we have their wedding film by Leanne Matthews from New Gen Films.

Nestling at the foothills of an iron-age fort, Rosedew Farm is a working farm in Llantwit Major which comprises of The Great Barn Function Hall, which is perfect for a wedding, and five self catering cottages so that you and your nearest and dearest can stay on site – perfect! I think you’ll agree it is beautiful too.

Jenna & Jason had a fabulous vintage themed wedding which was captured beautifully by Leanne. We hope you enjoy watching it!

Vintage styled wedding – Jenna & Jason from New Gen Films – Leanne Matthews on Vimeo.

Styled Shoot: Handmade Bespoke Wedding Dresses in Wales

If you are looking for inspiration for your big day we have a beautiful styled shoot for you today, featuring fabulous bespoke wedding dresses by Welsh designer Helen Rhiannon and photography by Welsh photographer Hannah Miles. These fabulous women teamed up with some other beautiful ladies to create this styled shoot and we at Cwtch the Bride are thrilled to share it with you today!

Photographer Hannah Miles joins us to tell us more about the shoot and the lady behind it all


The Designer

Handmade Bespoke Wedding Dresses in Wales – Helen Rhiannon

The Helen Rhiannon Designer Label was established on March 1st 2005 and is celebrating it’s 10 year anniversary with a new website, new branding and new bespoke bridal collection.  Over the last ten years, Helen has worked on a wide range of projects and has made dresses for international opera star Katherine Jenkins, BBC Cardiff Singer of the World finalist, Natayla Romaniw and many international pageant gowns which have been showcased around the World.


Since specialising in Bridalwear in 2012, Helen has become known for her sophisticated and timeless dresses with close attention to design detail and a reputation for perfection in the fit. She has won many awards over the years with the most recent being Best Independent Designer at the Welsh national Wedding Awards 2014.  The designer has recently launched her new personal bespoke bridalwear collection for the 10 year anniversary, which is available directly from Helen in her studio on the edge of Gower, in Swansea. Helen Rhiannon also currently stocks the Rachel Burgess Bridal Boutique with a Ready to Wear collection.


The Shoot

Helen’s collection is feminine and timeless so I wanted to create a look that reflected that, I had the perfect location in mind and after lots of planning we were really pleased with the results. It was a really fun shoot to work on with everyone feeling relaxed and happy, we had a great crew:
Helen Gill – Designer Helen Rhiannon Bridal 
Laura Griffiths – Hair Laura Jane Hairdressing 
Hannah Miles – Photographer 
Headpieces by Rhapsody Bridal, Swansea
Nia Frobisher
Elen Jones
Sacha Elton

The Images

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Helen Rhiannon will be exhibiting at our fabulous event, CWTCHFEST next month. For more information and to buy tickets to what promises to be the best wedding festival Wales has ever seen, click the link below.


Best Man Speech Preparation, Part 2

Baz the Best Man is back this week with part 2 of his advice on tackling the daunting task of the best man’s speech. See Part 1 here for the 5 basic breakdown points of the dreaded speech.

Best man Speech preparation Part 2

Here’s my tried and tested format on how best to approach the big day like a champion. The ‘SMART’ principle.

S – pecific

M –  easurable

A – ssignable

R – ealistic

T – ime related


When complimenting during your speech. Focus on how amazing the Bride and Bridesmaids look today. Remember to congratulate the Flower Girls and Page Boys on a fantastic job if any are involved. This is an ideal time to perhaps read out any Wedding Cards from relatives who couldn’t make it or raise a toast to absent friends or family. Run this past the Bride and Groom so that you have the accurate information or risk making yourself look like a Brad Pitt (If you know your Cockney Rhyming Slang)

In terms of sharing how and when they met it’s best to use specific occasions and milestones to give a little extra sincerity and meaning. Include funny anecdotes of them together. Focussing how they met and ‘fell in love’ is a great jumping off point. Share memorable (ideally funny) stories of the Groom’s childhood, teenage years and adult life.


I would initiate measuring from two angles. Firstly look at the overall timescale from being asked to be Best man and the Wedding day. Trust me if you do an Ostrich and bury your head in the sand you are just turning the heat up on the pressure cooker. Be proactive and have the ‘5 Basic Breakdown Points’ written down as soon as you can. Then use the SMART principles and Bob’s your uncle and Fanny’s your aunt.

Secondly I have personally found that around 10 minutes is ample time to cover the ‘5 Basic Breakdown Points’ in your speech.


If this amount of time seems like an eternity then I would encourage you to tap up other members of the Wedding party to ease the pressure. Some examples are allowing the Groom to say a few thank yous; perhaps the Chief Bridesmaid/sister/or a best friend would like to say a few words or read a poem or if one of the Ushers has a story they would like to share (They could speak themselves or write it down for you to relay) then hunkydory. As long as you’ve covered the 5 areas then it’s a job well done.


Just because you’ve seen another Best man speech of an elaborate dance routine or Show Tune number it doesn’t mean you have to compete. If you fancy a crack at the ’Title’ then all you have to consider is the preparation time and the skills required. If you can implement a musical number, a slide-show or something that goes above and beyond then I recommend that at points 3) or 4) are your times to shine. Sandwiched by Thank yous, compliments and the concluding Toast.

Breaking into song & getting the bridesmaids involved

Breaking into song & getting the bridesmaids involved


This underpins your whole planning stage from being asked to be Best man to the Wedding Breakfast. You can view the time you have in the know as time to worry or time to plan. See ‘7 Ps’; ‘5 Basic Breakdown points’; ‘SMART Principles’ and most importantly think positively. When I have the meat to the bones of my plan I tend to record myself on my phone video recorder a week or so prior to the big day to see if I have open and relaxed body language. If possible look up from your notes occasionally and look toward the Bride and Groom to give a personal touch. Above all the most important elements to your speech after you have settled on the contents is the ‘Volume’ and the ‘Clarity’.

In a nut shell – When you have your final speech write it down so that it is easy for you to read on pocket sized cue-cards and look after these like a new-born baby Panda. Number the cards and the public speaking world is your Oyster.

Coming up – Handling pre-speech nerves. How to be as cool as the proverbial Cucumber and not shudder like a defecating pooch.