Stephanie Allin Couture: The 2016 Collection “Love Letters”

Happy Saturday ladies,

Wow do we have a treat for you this weekend with the launch of our newest Lush List member- Stephanie Allin Couture’s stunning 2016 ‘Love Letters‘ collection.

Last week we had the pleasure of attending an exclusive preview of the collection and the welsh designer’s ‘Style It My Way’ concept in Stephanie’s Mumbles store.

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Stephanie’s unique ‘Style It My Way’ concept shows how one dress can be completely transformed with the addition of individual pieces featured in her new collection.

Stephanie Allin Advert from Rediscover Media on Vimeo.

The video shows how the delicate lace shrugs, encrusted diamond belts and beautiful silk over-skirts personalise a brides style, transform a look from day to evening and allow a bride to add her own style to her big day.

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On the night we saw ourselves how easily looks were transformed from a more reserved daytime look to completely vamping it up in the evening. What great way to create two different looks on your wedding day!

A personal favourite was the adapting of a beautiful slip dress into a romantic skirt and jewelled jumper combination- perfect for a winter wedding.

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I am a huge fan of lace and was so excited at the beautiful lace additions from little shrugs to full length slip overs which changed a simple elegant dress, adding more coverage and a little bit of sparkle.

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However,we didn’t just have the pleasure of viewing the wedding collection. oh no…we were treated to viewing the seriously seductive evening wear.

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We absolutely adore the fact that Stephanie has always stayed so close to  her welsh roots running her bridal boutique just doors away from where her grandmother lived in Mumbles,Swansea.

Stephanie we here at Cwtch love you and your beautiful designs. xxx

Maria and Stephanie

Sponsored Vendor: Introducing Rachel Burgess Bridal Boutique

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. Cwtch the Bride only accepts sponsored posts from companies we think will be useful to you :) 

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We are delighted to welcome Rachel Burgess Bridal Boutique to Cwtch the Bride this week. Rachel launched the Bridal Boutique in October 2012 and she specialises in gorgeous vintage style dresses handmade in Wales by Welsh designers. We asked Rachel a few questions about the boutique which she has answered below. All images were supplied by Rachel and were taken by Simon Gough Photography.

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Rachel Burgess

Hi Rachel, we’re so excited to have you on Cwtch the Bride today; can you tell our readers a bit about yourself? :) Hello! Thank you – I’m equally very excited to be on the blog today too!  I’m Rachel and I’m the owner of the Rachel Burgess Bridal Boutique in the seaside town of Penarth. In our little Boutique we specialise in true vintage dresses (1930’s-1970’s) and handmade dresses by Welsh Designers. We’re proud to be bringing something a little bit different to the Bridal scene and all the handmade dresses are made here in Wales by the designers themselves.

Collection #1, 'Helen' handmade by Helen Rhiannon, Photo By Simon Gough Photography

How and when did you start Rachel Burgess Bridal Boutique? I have been a bridesmaid several times (7 to be precise…. 8 times next year!) therefore I have been to a lot of Bridal shops with my girlfriends, and even though we always had a lovely time, I just found that there was something missing….for me, anyway. I used to be a Stage Manager who worked on musicals & opera all around the UK and therefore coming from a theatrical background I feel it’s important for people to represent who they are – and I think it is equally important for a Bride to do so on her wedding day and not fall into the category of what people think a Bride ‘should be’.

One day I mentioned my little secret dream of opening my own Boutique to my neighbour, and headed back out on tour with another theatre show. Shortly after that she phoned me to say the perfect shop had come up for rent in Penarth and she had already spoken to the landlady for me and she would meet me when I got back…… I was in shock! I met the landlady on a Saturday in May and I had a look around the shop – it was perfect – I signed on the dotted line there and then! It was one of those moments when my heart just said ‘do it otherwise you’ll always wonder – what if?’. With a lot of help from friends – painting, decorating and their constant support, the Boutique officially launched on 24th October 2012, and I’ve not looked back since!!!

'Lil' handmade By Helen Rhiannon - Photo By Simon Gough Photography

What’s do you love most about the Boutique? That’s a tricky one – I adore so many different aspects of the Boutique! I LOVE that I get to meet such fabulous women, all of which are creating their own unique wedding day, bespoke to them. I also love that we have so many Welsh Designers involved in the Boutique and giving our Brides the opportunity to meet her designer during the creative process is very important to us. That moment when a Bride gets so excited about finding her dress makes me squeal with excitement because she looks incredible! So many of our brides are travelling from all over the UK to have an appointment in the Boutique because they know that they want something that little bit different. I always get emotional when a bride comes to collect her dress – I think because by the end of the process I’m so proud to call so many of these lovely ladies my friends!

'Margo' By Angharad Mullooly Photo By Simon Gough Photograhy

Does a Bride have to book an appointment to visit the Boutique? I would always recommend booking an appointment yes, the Boutique is small and cosy so for appointments the bride has it exclusively for her and her nearest and dearest for two and a half hours. I lock the door, close the curtains, put the kettle on and we have a lovely time trying on as many, or as few dresses as she wants in a safe and non pressured environment. Therefore, I would always recommend booking an appointment as I wouldn’t want a Bride travelling to the Boutique only to find we are busy and there are no available appointments for that day. 

Collection #3- Vintage Dress 'Lilly'. Photo By Simon Gough Photography

Which Designers do you stock in the Boutique? I’m very lucky that I get to work with a very talented bunch of Designers, they are all such fabulous women and we have a great time working together! Helen Rhiannon (who won best Designer Award in Wales 2013 at the Welsh Fashion & Beauty Awards) has a stunning collection of handmade dresses which are exclusive to the Boutique, her dresses are timeless and show off the female figure perfectly. Another Welsh dress designer who is also exclusive to the boutique is Angharad Mullooly, Angharad’s designs ooze a non-structured Boho vibe and are created using vintage fabrics which are beautiful so each creation is completely unique. The accessory designers I work with are Claire Hill & Kate Barlow. Claire specalises in unique birdcage veils and elegant back necklaces, while Kate creates beautiful fabric bouquets and fabric based hair accessories. It’s an absolute joy to work with each of these ladies and I love the variety of styles we have all created together.

'Joanie' handmade by Angharad Mullooly Photo By Simon Gough Photography

Have you noticed any emerging trends in bridal wear for 2014/15? We don’t really stick to trends in the Boutique – we love to promote beautiful dresses which show off a figure beautifully without exposing too much (if you know what I mean?!). We love to pay attention to back detail on our dresses as it’s important for us that the dress has the ‘wow’ factor from every angle. Our designers pride themselves on using gorgeous luxurious fabrics which are soft to touch and extremely comfortable to wear. We want our Brides to be comfortable and to be able to dance the night away in style!

Collection #3- 'Betsy' handmade by Helen Rhiannon and handmade headpiece by Claire Hill. Photo By Simon Gough Photography 'Lil' #2- handmade by Helen Rhiannon - Photo by Simon Gough Photography 'Sasha' (back) by Helen Rhiannon. Photo By Simon Gough Photothraphy

Do you have any advice for brides choosing a dress for their big day? Yes, absolutely – HAVE FUN! This is such an exciting time and don’t ever feel any pressure to make a rushed decision. 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!

Collection #3 'Lorelie' by Helen Rhiannon. Photo by Simon Gough Photography Collection #3- 'Mair' by Helen Rhiannon. Photo By Simon Gough Photography 'Frenchie' (front) handmade by Helen Rhiannon- photo by Simon Gough Photography 'Louise' by Helen Rhiannon. Photo by Simon Gough Photography 'Sasha' (front) by Helen Rhiannon. Photo By Simon Gough Photography

WOW! I think you will all agree that these dresses are absolutely STUNNING! I want to get married again just so that I can go and try on some of these beauties! 

Thank you Rachel for sharing these with us and for telling us all about your Bridal Boutique. If any of our brides to be are still looking for the one, give Rachel a call on 02920 709701.

Charlie x

Bridal Sample Sale

If you haven’t chosen your dream dress yet, then make sure you put SUNDAY 3rd AUGUST in your diary.

Emma Philips Bridal Studio (based in Carmarthen) and White Bride (from Narberth) have joined forces for one day to host what we can only describe as a HUGE bridal sample sale.  

Amazing designer gowns such as Ian Stuart, Justin Alexander, Jenny Packham and many more! with up to 70% off! First come first serve! xx 

Where & When?

This joint BRIDAL SAMPLE SALE will take place on Sunday 3rd August 10am-3pm at the Ivy Bush Royal Hotel ,Carmarthen

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We have a feeling this is going to be VERY busy and suggest you get there early. Happy dress shopping! xxx