My career in the bridal industry has earned me some truly incredible opportunities over the years but it’s safe to say that this spring, when I had the opportunity to attend New York Bridal Fashion Week with my Anna Bridal family, it was the biggest highlight of them all. We were out there for the preview of the Berta S/S 2020 collection – the biggest event in the Bridal Fashion Week calendar and one of the most incredible runway shows I’ve ever witnessed.
Staying true to the iconic Berta brand, the ‘Milano’ collection is glamorous, romantic and the epitome of modern bridal. Featuring the intricate laces, show-stopping silhouettes and spectacular embellishment that has become synonymous with Berta designs, there is truly something for every bride in this collection.
I’ve shared some of my favourite images from the show below, so I will leave you in a moment to have a scroll and revel in aaaaall the bridal beauty.
BUT before I do… I am SO excited to reveal (after months of keeping it under wraps) that Anna Bridal Couture are now stockists of the Muse By Berta collection! It has been such a pleasure working with Anna on this incredible collaboration and I can’t wait to see the collection launch at Anna Bridal this summer. Be sure to follow Anna Bridal on Instagram to be the first to hear when the Muse By Berta collection arrives in the boutique!
Many wedding suppliers will tell you – inspiration for the styling of your big day can come from just about anywhere. And for me, one of the best places to look for some of the best styling inspo can come straight from the high street!
With many high street shops now having branched out into homeware (and many of them totally nailing it!), why not take a look at them for some one-off decor pieces that can provide the perfect finishing touches to your day.
Now, I’m of course not suggesting that you go and purchase 120 of those dreamy-but-could-never-justify-it glassware sets for your guests on the day (there are so many incredible companies with gorgeous tableware available to hire), however I would definitely take a look at what’s available on the high street for specific decorations or the perfect styling props for those detail shots that you are desperate for your photographer to capture.
It’s also worth noting, for any of my fellow planners or stylists that are reading this, that I often use pieces from the high street for styled shoots – as I did with the tableware in the images on this post.
Below you’ll find some of my favourite places on the high street for wedding props and decorations, I hope it provides some inspiration for the styling of your big day!
You never quite know what you’re going to find when you venture into TK Maxx, but it can be such a great place to find some one-of-a-kind decor pieces – think interesting trays, unusual bowls and decorative baskets, which can all be great for wedding styling! You’re also pretty much guaranteed a great price at TK Maxx, which is perfect when you’re close to maxing out your wedding decor budget.
Another wonderful and affordable option on the high street, Ikea is a good place to look for any decorative pieces that you are looking to buy rather than hire. I have previously used Ikea tableware for a photoshoot, however one of the things they are best for is candles and candle holders. It works out fairly affordable to buy a bulk-load of your favourite candlesticks / tea light holders from here, you can then either look into selling them on after the wedding or use them around the house as a reminder of your big day.
If you ever lose me, there’s a high chance you’ll find me browsing through the H&M Home in Westfield shopping centre. The H&M Home line is SO dreamy – always on trend whilst still being effortlessly timeless. For your wedding day, check them out for vases, decorative trays and candle holders, and if you are having a chill-out lounge area at your wedding, definitely take a look at their cushions.
I will never get tired of the Anthropologie home section. It is much more on the pricey side, but it is definitely worth a look for any unique or alternative decor items and a few minutes on their website will leave you feeling seriously inspired! Some of my favourite pieces? Their intricate trays (perfect for stationery flatlays!), unusual vases and tableware and some gorgeously twee cake stands! At the very least, treat yourself to a couple of pieces to spruce up your marital home.
I’ll be honest, I think I was in my twenties when I first shopped in a Matalan. I’ve always been skeptical of the quality of their products but definitely don’t let this put you off – Matalan shops are HUGE, their products are very affordable and they have a really great homeware section. Take a look at their vases and planters; they also have a wedding collection which includes some fairly cliché but incredibly fun hen party games and decorations.
The Zara Home collection is choc-full of all kinds of interior inspiration. Again, it’s a little more on the pricey side so I’d recommend selecting a few pieces that will really enhance your styling on the day – think pretty linens, interesting bowls and table accessories that you’ll continue to use long after your wedding day.
Yep, you read that right! Tesco have a lovely homeware section called Fox & Ivy with some great quality yet very affordable pieces. It’s where I picked up the holographic glassware for this photoshoot, which I now continue to use at home for special occasions. You are only able to view their pieces in larger Tesco stores rather than online, but I would definitely recommend checking them out!
Oliver Bonas is another store that is on the more pricey side but their pieces are SO gorgeous! They are wonderful for unique table accessories and vases, but they are also my go-to store for gifting so take a look if you are after an alternative yet thoughtful gift for somebody special.
Florals: Arcade Flowers
Stationery: Smitten With Ink
Plates & Linen: Matalan
Glassware & Cutlery: Fox & Ivy at Tesco
Napkins: TK Maxx
Candlesticks: H&M Home
Candles: Ester & Erik
Images by Charlotte Bryer-Ash Photography
For more wedding planning inspiration, visit my Rachel Dalton Weddings website.
Last night’s Oscars brought the 2019 Awards Season to a very glamorous close, and with a host-less ceremony, a controversial duet from Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper and an utterly adorable acceptance speech from Olivia Colman, it certainly gave people plenty to talk about.
But with Awards Season being Hollywood’s biggest chance to dress to impress, I want to talk about the gowns that ruled the red carpet this year and, in particular, the bridal-inspired looks which would look equally as stunning walking down the aisle.
From ruffles and tulle to beaded beauties and structured gowns – it has all been happening on the red carpet over the past few weeks and I’m rounding up all my favourite looks in this post. Brides to be, take note!
Regina King wearing Oscar de la Renta to the Oscars
Brie Larson wearing Celine to the Oscars
Amy Adams wearing Versace to the Oscars
Kacey Musgraves wearing Giambattista Valli to the Oscars
Michelle Yeoh wearing Elie Saab to the Oscars
Letitia Wright wearing Dior Haute Couture to the Oscars
Kiki Layne wearing Versace to the Oscars
Lady Gaga wearing Dior Haute Couture to the SAG Awards
Margot Robbie wearing Chanel to the SAG Awards
Rachel Weisz wearing Gucci to the BAFTA Awards
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge wearing Alexander McQueen to the BAFTA Awards
Letitia Wright wearing Stella McCartney to the BAFTA Awards
Michelle Rodriguez wearing Jenny Packham to the BAFTA Awards
Cynthia Erivo wearing Vera Wang to the BAFTA Awards
Kiki Layne wearing Dior Haute Couture to the Golden Globes
Dakota Fanning wearing Armani Privé to the Golden Globes
Saoirse Ronan wearing Gucci to the Golden Globes
Lady Gaga wearing Valentino Couture to the Golden Globes
Emma Stone wearing Louis Vuitton to the Golden Globes
Constance Wu wearing Vera Wang to the Golden Globes
Happy Friday folks! And, even more excitingly, happy 1st February! January felt long this year (tell me it’s not just me who thought this?) but we made it – and I’m ready to embrace February in all of it’s heart-filled glory.
I’m doubly happy today because I am truly DELIGHTED to have had my first ever styled shoot published on Rock My Wedding! This is such a milestone for me, not only speaking on behalf of Rachel Dalton Weddings, but also for me personally. Rock My Wedding was one of the first blogs I ever read, so to see my own work gracing it’s pages today has me unashamedly squealing with happiness!
Photoshoots are nothing without the right team behind them and it’s safe to say that with this one, I well and truly hit the jackpot. I was lucky enough to bring together suppliers from Dorset, Hampshire, Surrey and London and I couldn’t have been happier with what we created.
On a personal note, I would like to thank each and every supplier involved for working with me, and trusting me with this editorial. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for lending your time, talent and creativity to the shoot – I can’t recommend you all enough!
Lastly, a huge thank you to Rock My Wedding for featuring us! I will leave a few images on this post to give you a peek at what we created, but I would love for you to head over there and read the full feature.
Photography: David Wheeler Photography
Planning & Styling: Rachel Dalton Weddings
Florist: Emma Soulsby Flowers
Makeup: Tara Sanger Makeup
Linens: Just 4 Linen
Stationery: Georgina Read Creative
Confession time – I definitely intended for this blog post to go up earlier than the second week of January! You might have caught this post all about my 2019 bridal style trend predictions at the end of December, but a bout of winter flu between Christmas and New Year meant that sharing my trend predictions for weddings in general got pushed back a week. Better late than never, right?
Nevertheless, I have LOVED putting this together. I’ve had a delve through the trends I’ve seen emerging recently and my predictions for what is going to be huge in 2019, so settle down with a hot drink and get stuck in!
This has been my favourite colour styling trend recently and I am firmly hoping will stick around for a little longer. Pastels have been huge in the wedding world for years but in 2019 they’re getting a grown up makeover by being paired with rich, darker tones and I am obsessed!
Some winning combinations? Pale blush with warm lilac and a pop of rich burgundy, or go sleek and modern with a subtle nude and strong black pairing like the tablescape I created below.
Weekend-long weddings have soared in popularity over the past 12 months and I think they’ll be even more present in 2019. With many couples now inviting guests from far and wide, it’s no surprise that weddings are being made even more of an occasion.
The most popular schedule for a weekend wedding is an intimate rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding and a relaxed, informal brunch the day after. Looking ahead to next year, I can see couples getting even more creative with ways to extend the celebrations – including activity days in and around the local area and festival-style events the day after the wedding. This also brings me quite nicely onto my next prediction…
Going perfectly in hand with weekend weddings, many couples are now forgoing favours at their wedding, instead supplying their guests with a personalised welcome gift package when they arrive for the festivities.
You can find some tips on what to include in a welcome gift and how to put them together in this previous blog post – but as a guide, think miniature bottles of drink, some snacks to keep your guests going and hangover kits for the morning after. They’ll be sure to be appreciated much more than the forgotten favours that you painstakingly laid out for everybody!
Image by Lissa Ryan
Couples are more conscious than ever about the impact their wedding could have on the environment, and rightly so! Princess Eugenie led the way with her plastic-free wedding earlier this year and I wouldn’t be surprised if many couples opt for a similar approach going into 2019.
Another emerging trend amongst florists which I am fully on board with is the use of foam-free florals – omitting the use of non-biodegradable, plastic Oasis from wedding florals in favour of reusable, environmentally friendly techniques.
One for the foodies, grazing tables are styled up tables of cured meats, cheeses, breads, dips (and so much more!) that will be sure to go down a treat with both your guests and your Instagram feed!
Unique, colourful and bursting with selection, grazing tables are the perfect informal dining option and will provide a great talking point amongst your wedding guests that they’ll remember long after you say ‘I Do’.
Grazing Table by Your Platter Matters
Hygge swept us all up in a comforting hug way back in 2017, but this year I’m predicting it will make it’s way into the wedding world too. If you’re not familiar with the phrase, ‘Hygge’ (pronounce hoo-ga) is a Danish term that loosely translates to a sense of comfort, togetherness and wellbeing. As Meik Wiking, author of The Little Book of Hygge, explains “it is about being with the people we love. A feeling of home. A feeling that we are safe.” Which sounds like the perfect atmosphere for a wedding, don’t you think?
Think intimate, relaxed weddings; atmospheric candlelight; minimal, Scandinavian decor and technology-free ceremonies that are all about family. This is a theme that is all about a feeling of joyfulness and comfort and I am so on board.
Images via Rock My Wedding
I had to give a mention to the 2019 Pantone Colour of the Year – Living Coral, which is sure to have a huge influence on the wedding industry over the next 12 months. I can see many couples forgoing the pastel shades that we saw everywhere in 2018, instead opting for brighter, more vibrant hues.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a self-confessed lover of all things blush and if you are too then you MUST choose a colour palette that you love, BUT if you are looking to be a bit more bold with your colour choices then why not consider a bright coral, vibrant fuchsia or even a pop of navy. You can read more about how to style Living Coral here.
Image by Luna de Mare Photography
Thanks to the two gorgeous royal weddings we had in 2018, we’ve all gone a bit obsessed with statement florals! From Meghan and Harry’s floral archways to Princess Eugenie’s autumnal hued displays, dramatic florals are definitely having their moment.
If you don’t quite have a royal budget for your own florals, invest in one big installation to be the focal point – it will make much more of an impact than several small displays and you can always ask your florist to use individual bud vases or foliage-heavy arrangements elsewhere in your space to keep costs down.
Bridal styling is something I could talk about all day and with a background in bridal wear, I am always keeping an eye our for what brides will be wearing over the forthcoming year. I was so excited to take a look back at what brides have been loving style-wise throughout 2018, and forecast my predictions for 2019.
From trouser suits to texture, this post is packed full of bridal style inspiration for the next 12 months so make yourself comfortable and get stuck in!
Who wears the trousers? Well… whoever wants to really! Trouser suits ruled the runway this year, with the likes of Suzanne Neville, Ines Di Santo and Rime Arodaky adding tailored two-pieces to their 2019 collections. When it comes to rocking a bridal suit, go for strong tailoring, subtle details and, of course, some epic shoes to show off!
Blush pink got a romantic makeover this year, with our very own Princess Eugenie opting for a stunning rose-toned Zac Posen gown for her second wedding dress, and both Mandy Moore and Malin Akerman giving blush pink an ethereal vibe for their laid back weddings. From sand and champagne to the perfect powder pink, there’s a hue to suit every skin tone and I’m predicting that it will be the colour for 2019 brides.
More so than ever, we all have a duty to be kinder to the environment and it’s a mantra that many couples are applying to their wedding day too. To support this when it comes to your wedding attire, opt for designers who use ethically sourced fabrics and sustainable manufacturing methods and let your bridesmaids and groomsmen choose outfits that they will actually wear again.
Sparkle has been around in the wedding world forever but this season it’s had a lesson in subtlety and the effect is truly beautiful. Think twinkly fabrics, fully sequinned gowns and delicately beaded dresses that shimmer in the light as oppose to being in your face with bling. Not ready for sparkle on your dress? Go for a beaded hairpiece to give a nod to the trend in your outfit.
This post wouldn’t be complete without giving a mention to the royal weddings we’ve had this year and the influence they are bound to have on the bridal trends we see over the next 12 months. With Meghan Markle shunning lace in favour of two completely plain wedding dresses, I think we’ll be seeing a huge rise in the number of brides opting for classic and simplistic gowns that are all about the cut and silhouette of the dress (weren’t we all obsessed with that halterneck second dress!).
Meghan Markle wears (L-R) Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy and Stella McCartney
Whether they’re neat and small or organic and oversized, bows are making a huge statement right now and they’re more fashion-forward than ever. Personally, my favourite way to style this trend is by going for a gown that is clean cut and simple at the front with a dramatic half tied bow at the back.
Take the plunge and go for a gown with a plunging V neckline, a shape that is perfectly feminine and super flattering (especially on a smaller bust). Fit is everything with a daring neckline like this, make sure that you have a trusted seamstress on hand to alter your dress and make you completely comfortable on your wedding day – and remember to pack some fashion tape just in case!
3D flowers, feathers, pique fabrics and geometric lace – unique textures are everywhere in the bridal world at the moment! Playing around with the texture of your gown is such a fun and modern way to create a one of a kind bridal look. Designers such as Berta have been leading the way with this trend for the past few years, however I think 2019 will be the year that we see many more bridal designers get a little more experimental with their fabrics and I am so on board!
Another important royal wedding moment this year has been the significance of using your veil (or lack of!) to make a huge statement on your wedding day. The 16 foot veil worn by Meghan, featuring embroidered flowers from all 53 countries of the commonwealth, was a breathtaking sight to see walking down the aisle of St Georges Chapel and I imagine many brides will be emulating Meghan’s style with a dramatic long veil. Princess Eugenie, on the other hand, opted not to wear a veil at all for her wedding in order to show off the scar on her back from an operation she had as a child – a equally poignant statement about celebrating your scars which I hope inspires many brides to be.
(L-R) Meghan Markle wearing Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy and Princess Eugenie wearing Peter Pilotto
I am so excited to be sharing the first instalment in my ‘How To Style’ series, which will explore different ways to style current themes into your wedding day – and what better topic to kick things off with than the recently announced 2019 Pantone Colour of the Year: Living Coral.
Vibrant, lively and playful, Living Coral is described as ‘symbolising our innate need for optimism and joyful pursuits’, which makes it the perfect tone for couples who are looking to inject some fun into their big day! From bright pinks and corals to soft, peach-toned oranges, a pop of coral paired with muted blushes, an abundance of greenery, or even dark navy can make a real impact at your wedding.
Whether you opt for a less is more approach or go full on flamboyant with this lively hue, Living Coral is a colour I am well and truly on board with. Keep scrolling to get inspired!
A pop of coral will add such a fun element to your bridal look- consider incorporating some coral florals into your bridal bouquet or a hairpiece, or why not go bold and wear coral shoes underneath your dress? When it comes to beauty, I’d go for soft peach tones and a fresh, dewy complexion as a subtle nod to the theme.
Think relaxed, natural and organic when styling coral into your tablescape. Foliage-packed, loosely arranged centrepieces with bright coral florals such as peonies and roses will make a real statement. With such a bold centrepiece, keep your tableware neutral and classic and perhaps use your menus or place names to add a little extra colour!
If you’re wanting to wow your guests with your coral colour palette, don’t be afraid to go BIG with your decor. I’m sure you’ve gathered by now that, in my opinion, flowers are the best way to inject colour into your day, so I’d suggest being bold with a vibrant floral arch or installation and pairing this with muted colours in your signage and furniture.
Where better to involve coral into your wedding than behind the bar? Ask your mixologist to create a vibrant coral cocktail for your drinks reception – a guaranteed way to please your guests! Elsewhere in your big day, use coral-toned styling props to capture the smaller details such as your stationery and rings.
For more ideas and image credits, visit my How To Style… Living Coral Pinterest board.
There are some moments where I have to pinch myself to believe that I am lucky enough to be given such incredible opportunities and on Wednesday evening, as I found myself walking up to Kensington Palace for the Historic Royal Palaces Wedding Showcase, I experienced that very feeling.
I was kindly invited, alongside some other incredible wedding suppliers from across the country, to attend the evening of festivities – and what a magical night it was!
We arrived at the palace and were greeted with a glass of Cattier Champagne (supplied by Boutique Brands) and the opportunity to explore some of the incredible rooms inside. We then moved through to the King’s Gallery for a talk about royal wedding style over the past 200 years from Harper’s Bazaar’s Executive Fashion and Jewellery Director, Kim Parker. This breathtaking room has recently become licensed for weddings, so you could be the very first couple to marry here!
The Kensington Palace Pavilion, which provides the perfect blank canvas for evening receptions and parties, was transformed into a floral haven by Hayford and Rhodes alongside production from Wise Productions, furniture from Great Hire and our evening’s entertainment from Sternberg Clarke. The evening’s beautiful stationery was created by Anaya and their incredible new collection was on display for us to preview throughout the night.
Blue Strawberry, one HRP’s fabulous recommended caterers, set up four food tasting stations around the room. With delicious options such as scallop ceviche on the menu, all paired with a perfectly complimenting wine, we were well and truly spoilt. Later on in the evening, a series of mouthwatering miniature desserts were served in amongst the floral installation – can you think of a more exciting way of being served dessert?!
The evening was rounded off with a spectacular catwalk show courtesy of The Wedding Gallery. Beautiful designs by the likes of Inbal Dror, J Andretta, Reem Acra, Suzanne Neville and Valentini were showcased against the epic floral display, alongside groomswear by designers such as Thom Sweeney and S.J Soane. (more…)