Bride to be Diaries: Our Maid in Honour is helping to find The Dress!

Hello Cwtchers!

We have the beautiful Gwen back today, your very own ‘Maid In Wales’, with her second instalment on her Maid of Honour journey.

Alys the bride (and also Gwens twin sister) have been busy shopping for The Dress….

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The Dress

On the morning of my wedding, as a thank you for all the help and support she had given me as my Maid of Honour, I gave my sister Alys a present and card. In the card I wrote that I was ‘officially handing the Bride-to-be baton on to her’.

She has since taken that baton and run with it.

I have been seriously impressed with her efforts so far and she has been very proactive with setting a date, securing a venue, booking vendors and sending out save the dates (I would have expected nothing less!). In fact, she’s been so on the ball with everything that my involvement has been very limited up until now, when the wedding dress shopping (the fun bit) began.

MIW Save the date arrives!

Over the last couple of weekends I have made several journeys from Devon to Wales (including some seriously early starts for which I should definitely earn some bridesmaids points) to help Alys find ‘The Dress’.

We gathered the troops – the Wedding Team made up of our parents, Alys’ mother-in-law-to-be and me – and hit the shops.

MIW The Wedding Team

Following a wedding fair research trip a couple of weeks earlier we had booked in several appointments and scouted out some of the best wedding dress shops South Wales had to offer! We started off close to home in Usk with a visit to the very lovely Bridal Lane, followed by up a couple of trips up the valleys, and finally hitting a few shops in the Cardiff area, including Laura May and High Society.

MIW Me and Alys outside Laura May

I was really excited about this bit – getting to look at all the pretty dresses and sip the complementary prosecco whilst Alys catwalk modelled all sorts of different gowns –  although I think I underestimated how tricky it would be sitting on the other side of the table when wedding dress shopping. It became almost like a game of poker, trying to give an opinion on a dress without giving too much a way in case I didn’t like one that Alys thought was absolutely wonderful, or vice versa. (Thankfully there were only a couple of occasions where Alys and The Wedding Team disagreed on things and most of the time we were all on the same page.)

MIW Wedding dress shopping!

Having started out with an open mind, each shop helped Alys to firm up her ideas on what she did and didn’t want out of a wedding dress – what shapes flattered her figure most and what designers suited her best. And yet ‘The Dress’ remained elusive.

We found many dresses that had elements of what she was looking for. The dress with the beautiful train. The dress with the lovely neckline. The dress with the most gorgeous lace. But like Goldilocks and the three bears, Alys just couldn’t find a dress that was just perfect. The dress that gives you butterflies.

Then, one day, after many hours of internet research, Alys stumbled upon a shop in Bath called Perfect Princess which had just the kind of dresses she was looking for. So Alys and the Wedding Team headed to Bath during the Easter holidays to hunt down the perfect dress. Sadly I was unable to make the trip as I was stuck in work that day, however the team kept me in the loop with constant text and Whatsapp updates.

MIW Alys outside Perfect Princess

And there it was – the dress that gives you goosebumps. As sad as I am to have missed being there for that moment in person, I am reliably informed that this was the dress Alys fell in love with almost instantly, and I couldn’t be happier. She is going to look incredible. Phil really is a lucky guy.

In other news, I also got to take part in the envious task of a taster event with Alys’ chosen wedding caterer – Prickly Pear.

MIW Me and Alys at the catering event

This was a very hard task, which involved a family trip (both sets of parents and the groom-to-be) on a rainy Sunday afternoon to a local village hall to sample the delights of Prickly Pear’s North African inspired dishes and to test out their hosting skills.

MIW Prickly Pear food

Although this isn’t the exact menu Alys and Phil will be having served for their first meal as man and wife, I can confirm that the food was delicious and the catering staff were excellent. I am very much looking forward to eating their food again next April.

It’s a hard life being a bridesmaid.

Groom to be Diaries: Our RAF Grooms are sorting the details!

Hello Cwtchers!

The RAF boys are back and the realisation that the big day is ever enriching and only four months away, is spurring them on to finalise those finer details….

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Hey everyone – we hope you are all good!

Well we are now within the last four months to the wedding day itself and it is starting to sink in what we have left to do!  We have just come back from a friend’s wedding in Turkey (which was amazing!) and it has highlighted all the small things that we haven’t thought of.

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Some of which were quite big ones such as the bridesmaids’ dresses, but with some help from the bride she pointed us in the direction of some great online sites that she used.

Within one week of the holiday being over, the dresses had arrived – James now needs to get his bridesmaids together to try them on. Fingers crossed he has gotten their sizes right.

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The other bits being the bridesmaid flower posies and table decorations for the evening entertainment etc.

It has definitely crept up quickly and although the major planning has taken place, like the venue, catering, flowers etc, all the small things are definitely getting overlooked and give you a bit of sense of shock when you realise.

I know there is the stigma that a gay wedding is usually flamboyant and possibly overdone, but the things we have forgotten are all the finite feminine touches that a bride would usually bring to the wedding. James is such a bad bride (Lol!)  However we have had  such a busy period over the past six months with my job and James in between jobs since leaving the Air Force, that the time has flown without us realising.

Within the past two weeks we have tried our suits on during the initial fitting which definitely put a massive smile on face seeing James so dressed up. He is such a hot cutie when he dresses up! We have another date in September when the Best Man and the Ushers arrive for their fitting.  My aim is to lose a bit of the podge I’ve gathered whilst being at home with James and eating contently! ☹

We are off to Berkeley Castle next week to see our new wedding event co-ordinator who wants to go through the detail with us.

Berkeley Castle

We are so fortunate to have an amazing team at Berkeley Castle – such a god send when planning.
The visit will give us the opportunity to finalise some thoughts in our head to the decorations throughout the castle that we just haven’t quite thought of yet. If I had my way I would definitely blow our budget on the decorations.

So the next time we write one of these it would be just before the wedding and we will highlight any of the last minute prep, plus James will have had his ‘hen’ do in September to Ibiza, whilst due to work, my Stag do is the weekend before the wedding. RAF Grooms July 7I am not sure if that’s a good thing but we will see!!!!

Cwtch of the Week: A Squeezy Cwtch

Good morning lovelies!

We have a gorgeous squeezy cwtch for you today. Shot by the lovely Sandra Ace, Andrew and Courtney managed a delicious newlywed cwtch for you….

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A Squeezy Cwtch

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And to top it off – we have Andrew and Courtneys entire beautiful big day to show you on Friday – so keep your eyes peeled x

 

Bride to Be Diaries: Our Unexpected Bride is Making Decisions

Morning everyone!
The gorgeous Rachel aka The Unexpected Bride is back, and this time, she’s making decisions!
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Wedding Planning – The Indecisive Parts

During our wedding planning there were a few things which we have been indecisive on. I knew that if I got married that I really wanted to get married in a church, had an idea of my dress and bridesmaid dresses but I was indecisive and debated with myself and fiancé on a few things. Make Up Artist, Wedding Videographer, Wedding DJ/band, wedding breakfast menu, honeymoon destination… lots of decisions to make!
Make Up Artist
I do enjoy playing with make up both on myself and anyone else who may let me! Having said that, I never end up adventurous and rarely move away from light pinks, brown and smokey eyes.
I thought it would be exciting to treat myself to some new make up and maybe a lesson on creating a wedding look. Both MAC and Charlotte Tilbury offer this but seemed to be booked up for Saturday’s during the Summer. I kept changing my mind on what to do, do I attempt it myself or book a Make Up Artist for the day.
Last year, my sister had Carrie from Beauty at Carrie M as her Make Up Artist for her Bridal make up. I was lucky as Bridesmaid that Carrie also did my make up.
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I asked if Carrie could keep to similar colours that I already used and I didn’t expect the result to look so different to my attempt at make up using the same colours. Sophie’s make up looked perfect and I was so happy with mine and realised that I definitely needed to improve my make up skills to attempt to recreate the look for another special occasion (or book Carrie again!).
So I have decided for my wedding day, rather than doing my normal make up, that I will book Carrie for my special day too.
Carrie is such a lovely, friendly and professional Make Up Artist that I know that she will also help me feel relaxed in the morning in addition to looking my best! She is open to talking about my ideas and happy to incorporate my favourite make up (currently my NARS Multi Purpose stick and Charlotte Tilbury lipstick!).
Conveniently, Carrie also does manicures and pedicures so I am booked in for those too which will last for our honeymoon!
To help me decide the colours,  I recently tried out pink for my holiday to Croatia and will try another colour before I decide for the wedding day!
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I have been following Carrie on Instagram for some inspiration, along with lots of other wedding related follows.
Make Up Artist – ticked and booked
The Unexpected Bride xxx

Engagement Stories: Tammy and Charlottes Surprise Sunset Proposal

Good morning everyone!

We are very happy to share this beautiful story with you! Not only is it just gorgeous, but we are also welcoming Tammy and Charlotte into the Cwtch The Bride family!

They will be our newest guest bloggers who will be sharing their ups and down whilst on their wedding planning journey! Watch this space for their official ‘Bride to Be Diaries‘ introduction!

But for now, get ready for a beautiful engagement story! If you would love to share your engagement story with us, get in touch!

Engagement Stories

Tammy and Charlottes Surprise Sunset Proposal

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Last year I met the love of my life. She was the most beautiful, kind and caring person I’d ever met. She was full of laughs and random facts, like that Penguins will spend a life time finding the perfect pebble to give to their life long companion.

On June 17th 2016 at Ogmore-by-sea beach, I found the perfect pebble for my perfect woman and asked her to be my girlfriend.

Fast forward a year to the day and I’m blind folded heading West to a secret location. Finally we reach it, Ogmore-by-sea beach where she’d set up a tee pee filled with cheeses, nibbles and Prosecco. We spent a gorgeous few hours relaxing whilst over looking the sea and the spot where we got together. Then as the sun went down she pulled out my pebble-she’d kept it.

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As we reminisced about our magical year together she brought out her own pebble and within it was a ring. “Wnei di priodi fi?” (Will you marry me?) she said. “Gwnaf” (I will) I replied.

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The next day, to top it off, she took me on a surprise hot air balloon ride. It was the one bucket-list entry I had. As we floated over the beautiful Welsh country side I looked over at this amazing woman I’d fallen in love with a year ago. She was still the most beautiful, kind and caring person I’d ever met but now she was my fiancé – my dreams had come true.

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