One-of-a-Kind Handmade Weddings: Easy-to-Make Projects for Stylish, Unforgettable Details
“One-of-a Kind Handmade Weddings is filled with ideas to inspire today’s bride-to-be. The book is filled with extra-special touches that will quickly and easily personalize any event—whether it’s in a ballroom or at the beach. Centerpieces in bloom, candlelit walkways, perfect accessories for flower girls and groom, a memory scrapbook, table lanterns, a fishbowl of wishes, and save-the-dates—these are just a few of the many decorative details. There are a wide range of projects and additional design ideas for the planning, ceremony, and celebration. Readers can choose from among the easy step-by-step projects—or look for inspiration in the photo gallery of design ideas to create their own signature style.” → more info
We are in the height of Summer here in the UK and I know some of you are lucky enough to have year round sunshine. I am fortunate to live near to the beach and cannot think of a better theme for a party. Think of the fun you could have decorating the venue and choosing beach inspired treasures to incorporate into your day, like the fab cake topper above from Lollipop Workshop.
Choosing a theme for your wedding is probably the most difficult thing about planning your celebration. Perhaps you have a little gem of an idea but are not quite sure how to bring it to fruition or maybe you have chosen the most fantastic colour for your bridesmaids gowns and want to use this as the starting point. Maybe you just love starfish and want to use this as the starting point, like these gorgeous hair accessories from Dreams by the Sea.
Living near the sea or holding your wedding on the beach is the perfect opportunity to have a beach themed party. Maybe you will use bright orchids as the focal point for a tropical beach theme. The gorgeous pink orchid hair clips above from Blue Lovebirds would be a perfect accessory for the bride or bridesmaids hair, made from silk they definitely would not wilt on the day.
Another beach theme is a little more rustic and would be ideal if you are a fan of the shabby chic trend that is currently very popular. Napkins could be sewn in Cath Kidston ‘Boat‘ fabric, boat or fish shape chocolate favors could be made using a chocolate mould and the wooden fishes above, from Giddy Kipper, would make great decorations perhaps tied to the back of a chair or even in place of namecards for place settings.
By choosing a beach theme you are not limited to a particular colour or design, as you can see the beach really does inspire different ideas.
After the initial excitement of being engaged wears off you may find you suddenly feel incredibly daunted at the task ahead, planning your wedding. Few of us are fortunate enough to be able to afford a wedding planner but thankfully there are many websites and magazines that can help.
When planning your wedding day you will have many things to consider, from venue to stationery, from cake to flowers, never mind your dress, hair or shoes! Perhaps you are lucky enough to know the theme or colour scheme you want for that special day but most brides are bombarded with choice and can often choose several ideas before choosing a theme.
Over the coming months you will spend hours leafing through wedding magazines or searching for specific suppliers on the internet. As well as a collection of magazines there may also be brochures or even photos of ideas you have seen when out. Planning a wedding is like being an interior designer putting together a mood board for a particular room, creating a style that reflects the people living there but encompassing current trends.
When I am planning a party I like to collect ideas in a journal or folder so that I can keep thoughts for themes in one place. I may tear out a picture from a magazine, noting the supplier’s website or telephone number. Thankfully due to camera phones I can always take a picture when I am out, if I see something that sparks an idea for a theme or just for reference to help me find or make a similar idea.
By being organised from the start you can plan a truly fantastic day, without employing a wedding planner. Surprisingly you will find that suddenly people around you are wonderful resources, everybody seems to know a great florist, or cake designer, or stationery designer or even a shoemaker…well maybe a shoemaker is a little more difficult to find, but I will try for a future post!
Heather Noss is just like so many of us creative types from the DC area…she used to work for the government, and found her job quite rewarding and enjoyable. But there was definitely something missing…stimulus for the creative side of her brain, which was just not getting the attention it deserved in the office environment.
Luckily for Heather, and for all of us who love pretty printed things, she found the missing link in the form of handcrafted paper goods. Like many of us, she was drawn to the letterpress technique for it’s touchable surface and classic, handcrafted appeal.
But she wasn’t happy with the traditional process, which is subject to certain limitations. For example, most letterpress equipment only allows for one color to be printed at a time. This significantly increases the cost of multi colored designs.
Rather than just make do, Heather developed an entirely new printing method!
Instead of the traditional letterpress process, Heather presses un-inked photopolymer plates over regular, flat-printed prints. She makes the photopolymer plates herself from her own designs. The process is exclusive to Letterpress Light, and is known as the Compression Plate Process ™.
This process creates impressions that are extra deep and ultra-textured, and designs that can use an unlimited number of colors.
Heather and her customers alike are thrilled with the results. Her goal is to create paper goods that are beautiful and memorable keepsakes, and feedback from customers indicates that’s exactly what she does with every order!
Letterpress Light produces a wide variety of paper goods. The list includes wedding invitation sets (invitation and RSVP cards with return-addressed envelopes), party invitations, place cards, announcements, holiday cards, thank you cards, business cards, and more.
She even has an artisan card subscription service, where subscribers receive two cards every month in new designs created exclusively for subscribers.
Heather draws her inspiration from the unique needs of her clients, and therefore loves to do custom work. She can customize any of the designs available in her shop, or create something from scratch just for you and your special event.
I have resisted until now writing about what I think is the most exciting purchase in planning your wedding. The Dress. This is the one day you get the chance to wear something truly magnificent that makes you feel like a million dollars. In this month’s Cosmopolitan Bride there are some fabulous dresses featured from the catwalks in New York for the 2011 bridal shows earlier this year. Whilst there are some aspects of the dresses available off the rails of bridal shops that you may like, there are probably some that you really dislike. Another option is to have a dress designed and made just for you, either by a family friend or a member of your family or you can seek out a designer to work with to produce ‘your dress’.
Kate Halfpenny is a wedding dress designer based in London. Also with many years experience as a celebrity stylist and an impressive academic portfolio in textiles and design, including a BA Honours in Fashion Marketing and Manufacturing and holds a prestigious MA in Design for Textiles Futures from Central St. Martins College, London.
As a child Kate Halfpenny grew up in a creative environment, her mother was a talented knitwear designer and her father was qualified graphics and craft designer. This led her to try many arts and craft mediums including pottery, printing, jewellery design and fine art before following her passion in textiles.
By 2000 Kate Halfpenny’s knowledge and passion for the history of fashion and her ability to turn an idea into reality meant she was in demand as a costume designer for many brands, including Pepsi, Honda, Ghost and Hugo Boss among others. Kate has also styled many celebrities including Twiggy, Shirley Bassey, Daisy Lowe and Pixie Lott and Emilia Fox has even modeled dresses on Kate’s website. Kate Halfpenny has also made a dress for Kate Moss to wear for her 35th birthday celebrations.
Yet even with celebrity credentials Kate Halfpenny can design and create a beautiful dress for you. From her London studio Kate offers a bespoke dress making service so that you really can have the dress that your heart desires.
All images are taken from Kate Halfpennys website www.halfpennylondon.com with her full permission.