I’m super happy this morning – not only is it my birthday (eeeek mid thirties are here) BUT we have the amazing Cwtchfest video from our September event at St Fagans National History Museum with a very important announcement!!!
We have been a little quiet on the Cwtchfest front recently as we have been squirreling away in Cwtch HQ with our Lush List Members – Amgueddfa Cymru- National Museum of Wales to bring you not one but three fabulous events this year!!!! Details of these will be announced shortly- we are so EXCITED we could burst!!!!
But today to get us right in the mood for wedding and festival season sit down, grab yourselves a cup of tea and enjoy our quick video from last years event from the lovely Chris at Christopher Paul Weddings https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7JnpJeDX4I&feature=youtu.be
When you get married one of the most exciting things is buying your wedding dress! But it can also be one of the scariest and daunting parts of planning your big day! At the end of the day it is supposed a happy occasion and shouldn’t cause you stress. There seems to be all these traditions and rules about buying your dress. So….we know quite a lot about weddings but when it comes to your dress we decided to ask the experts. Thanks to some ladies on our Lush List we managed to pop these jewels of information together and hope that they help you out.
Who should you bring to your bridal appointment?
Rachel Burgess Bridal Boutique: There are no rules whatsoever about how many people you should take with you when trying on dresses. Here in the Boutique I meet Brides who prefer to look at dresses on their own, and other Brides who like to bring key members of their family and closest friends with them – I’ve even had Brides who have brought their husband to-be with them to help make the decision.
My advice would be to trust your instinct and take people along to help make that decision who know you well. This is your time to try on as many dresses as you like – but stay true to who you are and find a dress that represents that perfectly, so that when you look back at your photos you think ‘yes, I totally did that my way’. If a dress makes you emotional and you fall in love with it – trust those tears! If you can’t stop thinking about a particular dress then that too speaks volumes! My biggest tip would be to – HAVE FUN! This is such an exciting time and don’t ever feel any pressure to make a rushed decision!
CocoMio Bridal Boutique: There is huge celebration when you find your dress. Then the important question arises of what size and how will the dress fit to me?
We are very experienced and we will always measure your bust, waist, hips and length. We will also measure your arms if the dress has a sleeve. We will check all designer sizing charts and will choose the size based on the largest measurement in accordance with the dress style and knowing our expertise in this field. We make all brides aware that alterations are required with every dress and we recommend a seamstress so brides can book in with advance notice for two months before the wedding. Some of our designers will allow customisation with a heavy fee but if you change size wise then you are again paying double so most brides stick to the size being ordered and then get the dress altered after.
Alterations can cost anywhere between £80-£250 and again it may cost more if the dress has more work in it or heavily beaded. The alterations cost in Wales is only a fraction of some cities like London where it can cost up to £500 to alter an evening gown, no mind a wedding dress so don’t fret over the charges as it could be worse. We get many brides who travel from London and the surrounding areas to see our collection and use the work of a skilled seamstress here because it is cheaper to travel and gives the girls a road trip to look forward to.
So what happens at the seamstress? Well it is usually set out over 2-3 fittings. First one is trying on the dress and letting the experienced seamstress pin and tuck the dress in the correct places to ensure it fits and looks perfect. You leave your dress with them over a few weeks while they carry out the work and then you go back for your second fitting. The dress should be perfect at this fitting and if you are unhappy with anything then you should speak now so it can be sorted and a third appointment arranged. The dress will be steamed and ready to go for the wedding and placed back in the gown bag. If a bride wants to use their own seamstress then that is perfect. We have no obligation to our seamstress but we will always recommend a professional.
One1 Bridal: A brides search for her gown can be a roller-coaster of emotions. There is the excitement for finding her dream dress, combined with a few nerves of the unknown when trying bridal gowns for the first time! Your consultant should consider your overall big day style, budget and body shape when guiding you towards the perfect gowns to try.
Since bridal gowns are generally grander than anything you will have tried before so our consultant is on hand to assist you in getting into them! The second step is pinning the gown as required so that you have the best idea of how you will look when the size is correct. Our samples range from a size 10-18 but with some insider tricks we can make most of our sample gowns fit all! Once duly accessorised you are ready for your big reveal to your nearest and dearest. Knowing you are the only bride in the store and receiving our undivided care and attention definitely gives you that luxurious experience you have always dreamed of!
It can take a surprising amount of work to organise a visit to a bridal store, rallying your entourage to find a day and time when they are all available. It would be extremely disappointing to go to all of that effort and arrive at a store only to find that there are no available appointments. By booking your appointment in advance you can relax and look forward to the wonderful experience that awaits you!
If you plan on visiting a few stores in the same day having appointments booked and a schedule in mind means everyone will know where they should be at what time and you can even schedule in a little lunch/dinner or some cheeky cocktails!
We always recommend booking an appointment although we are not strictly appointment only, so of course if a bride arrives and we are available we happily offer her the full ONE1 Bridal experience.
Good morning lovely people! Today we have a very special Featured Post. A wonderful new bridal boutique has opened in the gorgeously leafy Cardiff superb of Whitchurch. However, this is no ordinary bridal boutique. Fancy buying a stunning wedding gown which not only is incredible, but also leaves you with a warm and fuzzy ‘I helped someone’ feeling? Read on and find out how…….
All images courtesy of LJ Meeks Photography
Pritchard and Moore – Wedding Boutique with a twist
Wales’ newest bridal boutique opens with a unique twist
A NEW bridal boutique with a unique twist opened earlier this summer in the heart of the popular suburb of Whitchurch.
Pritchard and Moore is a luxury stand-alone bridal boutique on Tyn Y Pwll Road, stocking designer wedding dresses and accessories from the likes of Ellis Bridal, Jonathan James, Justin Alexander, Blue, San Patrick, Eva Jordan, Catherine Jane, and Ronald Joyce.
The shop itself offers an indulgent atmosphere with beautiful, high quality dressing room facilities and the attentive, specialist service expected from a bridal boutique.
Yet unlike a traditional independent boutique, all the profits from sales of wedding dresses go straight to Cancer Research Wales, the Welsh charity behind Pritchard and Moore.
Cancer Research Wales has sold wedding dresses at its Bridal Suite in Whitchurch since 2011, but has expanded the idea to launch Wales’ first stand-alone, not-for-profit bridal boutique.
Many of the dresses stocked at Pritchard and Moore have been donated directly by designers or are ex-season stock given to Cancer Research Wales from other bridal boutiques. Other designer dresses have been donated by former brides who would like their special dress to be worn again and raise money for a vital cause.
Brides searching for their dream dress for their wedding day can expect the same level of service and luxurious surroundings that they would find in any other bridal boutique, but also know that the money they spend is going straight to teams of leading cancer research scientists in Wales, who are making progress every day in the search for better treatments and cures for cancer patients.
Prices for a typical designer wedding gown range from £300 – £600, which is a significant saving on the usual prices of a designer wedding dress.
The store’s name comes from two longstanding Cancer Research Wales trustees and eminent research scientists, John Pritchard and John Moore, who have both contributed enormously to the landscape of cancer research in Wales and beyond.
The charity was set up in 1966 by a team of scientists and is marking its 50th anniversary. All the money raised by Cancer Research Wales stays in Wales to fund pioneering research into earlier diagnosis and developments in prevention and treatment of cancer.
Alison George, Pritchard and Moore Manager, said: “From the moment you set foot into Pritchard and Moore, you are our special guest. With unparalleled customer service, we ensure your visit with us will be one to remember. Our warm and welcoming staff believe your dress search is more than simply shopping – we provide a luxurious and exclusive experience tailored exclusively for you.”
Laura Priddle, Fundrasing Manager of Cancer research said: “This is really a unique opportunity for brides to make the world of difference to the fight against cancer when finding their perfect dress. Weddings can be expensive events but by purchasing a dress from Prichard and Moore, they are not only potentially saving money but making a long lasting contribution to a vital cause.”
As a little added bonus, one of our Real Wedding brides, Lisa, donated the dress featured here! To see the dress in its second wedding (Lisa was the second bride, and it will no doubt make another bride very happy thanks to Lisa), have a look here, at Lisa and Steves beautiful DIY Barn Wedding! Thank you Lisa xxx
So we are all well and truly into the countdown to #Cwtchfest2016 St Fagans now – only 44 days to go. Which means you only have 43 days to buy your tickets!
But fear not. To help you out, this coming weekend, we have a huge 50% discount on all tickets bought! Starting at midnight on Friday!
So time to ring around that bridal party – who’s coming?! Brides, Grooms, Best Man, Bridesmaids, the Mums, Dads, Groomsmen!?
For now though, onto the wonderful St Fagan’s. Lets face it, its such a blummin wonderful place, the more we all know about the place, the richer our lives will become! Today we have an overview of what truly is a magical venue.
For a wedding steeped in history, look no further than St Fagan’s National History Museum, the venue for our upcoming Cwtchfest this September. Home to over forty historical buildings, including the Oakdale Workmen’s Institute and St Fagan’s Castle, the venue offers an incredible location for the big day.
ST FAGAN’S CASTLE is Grade I listed Elizabethan Castle, with its opulent rose-wood and oak furniture, represents classical taste and style, creating a magical atmosphere for a special wedding day.
The Castle’s Main Hall and Dining Room is an intimate venue for up to 40 guests. The Hall was the height of Victorian style, decorated in dark oak with an intricately carved fireplace bearing the family coat of arms. The Dining Room was completed in 1896.
OAKDALE WORKMEN’S INSTITUTE –St Fagan’s also offers the grand Oakdale Workmen’s Institute as a beautiful reception venue. In the early twentieth-century it was the focus for social and cultural life in Oakdale, a mining village in South Wales.
Its rich wooden interior provides a traditional feel for ceremonies, echoing the time-honoured vibe of the venue as a whole. For your reception, the concert hall on the first floor can accommodate up to 90 guests. Its sprung floor and stage mean you can dance the night away in style.
Civil wedding ceremonies are licensed at both the Castle and the Workmen’s Institute and there is also a purpose-built MARQUEE available, erected on the lawn of the Castle, providing a blank canvas for any couple to fill with ideas and personal style. Set on the Castle Lawns, marquee weddings can be accommodated between May to September, 4pm to midnight.
The Museum benefits from beautiful natural surroundings and is set in 100 acres of lush green parkland, the grounds of a sixteenth-century castle that was donated to the people of Wales by the Earl of Plymouth.
When it comes to your photographs, you will be spoilt for choice. The Castle’s elegant landscaped gardens include the Italian Garden, the Thyme Garden, fishponds, fountains a mulberry grove and an exquisite Rose Garden.
We all love this post – its brilliantly helpful when you’re looking for some inspiration on readings for your wedding that aren’t Corinthians! So here you go. First posted in 2013, our previous bride-to-be Charlie, now married and with a baby on the way, talked about picking readings for a non-religious ceremony. Over once again, to you Charlie…..x
Throw Back Thursday: A Selection of Non-Religious Readings
Hello lovely readers!
This week I am sharing with you some non-religious readings, a simple way of making a civil ceremony a lot more personal. Before I start, I almost feel like I should put a disclaimer on this post for those of you who have already selected your readings because of what happened to me!
Mark and I had chosen three readings, confirmed them with the registrar, found readers to read them and printed off our orders of ceremony and then about three nights before the wedding I came across this reading from Stardust (which was the first film Mark and I saw together- him under duress!) and I nearly cried because I loved it so much and couldn’t have it, so proceed with caution!
The Stardust reading
Yvaine: You know when I said I knew little about love? That wasn’t true. I know a lot about love. I’ve seen it; I’ve seen centuries and centuries of it. It’s the only thing that made watching your world bearable.
All the wars, pain, lies, and hate, made me want to turn away and never look down again. But to see the way that mankind loves! I mean you could search the furthest reaches of the universe and never find anything more beautiful.
So, yes I know that love is unconditional, but I also know it can be unpredictable, unexpected, uncontrollable, unbearable, and strangely easy to mistake for loathing. And, well, what I’m trying to say, Tristan, is.. I think I love you.
My heart it feels like my chest can barely contain it, like it doesn’t belong to me anymore; it belongs to you, and if you wanted it, I’d wish for nothing in exchange: no gifts, no goods, no demonstrations of devotion, nothing, but knowing you love me, too. Just your heart in exchange for mine.
As I mentioned above, we had three readings and I think they worked really well – we had a lot of comments about how personal our ceremony was and that was what I was hoping for. Deciding who will do the readings for you can be difficult! It is a daunting thing for some people to get up and speak in front of a room full of people and I know some people have found it hard to find willing volunteers!
Mark knew he wanted to ask his best man and as he’s a confident guy that was no problem, that left us with two. Initially I tested the water with my bridesmaids but as suspected they were all quite hesitant and I didn’t want anyone to do anything they weren’t totally comfortable with. I then thought about two other people close to me, my two cousins Jade and Amy. What with Amy being a teacher I was pretty sure that she would be fine, but Jade hates being the centre of attention so I was cautious about asking her but to my delight they both said yes and did an amazing job!
Dr Seuss fan’s this one is for you! Oh the places you’ll go makes a beautiful but light hearted reading, it is quite long though so you may want to have it abridged!
Do we have any couples with a Scottish connection? This is a great two person reading, with one person reading the application and one the appointment, preferably a married couple in my humble opinion:
Bidie-in by Diana Hendry and Hamish Whyte
O Let me be your bidie-in
And keep you close within
As dearest kith and kin
I promise I’d be tidy in
Whatever bed or bunk you’re in
I’d never ever drink your gin
I’d be your multi-vitamin
I’d wear my sexy tiger-skin
And play my love-sick mandolin
It cannot be a mortal sin
To be in such a dizzy spin
I’d like to get inside your skin
I’d even be your concubine
I hope you know I’m genuine
O let me be your bidie-in
Of course, you may be my bidie-in
You didn’t need to apply within
A braw new world’s about to begin
We’ll gang thegether through thick and thin
We’ll walk unscathed through burr & whin
If you’re to be my porcupin
I’ll just have to bear it and grin
I’ll be your sheik,your djinn
I’ll be yang to your yin
You’ll be my kitten,my mitten,my terrapin.
All night long we’ll make love’s sweet din
And never mind the wheelie-bin
In our romantic cinema there’ll be no FIN
And so I say again – you’re in- You’ve got the job of bidie in!
I absolutely love this one by Coulson Macleod, his typography prints are so beautiful! I also love this poem by Joyce Ebrecht, it makes me think of being an old married couple :) With that in mind I also found this one which brings tears to my eyes: The beauty of love.
If you are a book lover why not take an extract from your favourite book as a child? Even better if both of you have a favourite book and you can take a reading from each, I have seen it done with books such as Winnie the Pooh and The Velveteen Rabbit and I think it works so well.
I hope that by now you have found some inspiration but just in case you haven’t (as we are indeed a WELSH wedding blog!) I will leave you with the lovely Mi gerddi gyda thi complete with translation!
“Mi gerddaf gyda thi dros lwybrau maith
A blodau can a breuddwyd ar ein taith
I’th lygaid syllaf a dal dy law
Mi gerddaf gyda thi beth bynnag ddaw”.
“I will walk with you across distant paths
Flowers and dreams will bless our journey
Into your eyes I will gaze and holding your hand
I will walk with you whatever may come”.
Have you found readings that you love? Have you decided not to have readings? If you have any readings that I haven’t included (I know there are bound to be loads!) please share them in the comments box, I would love to read them and I’m sure our readers will too :)