Saturday, 31 December 2011

Chocolate Delores

These scrumptious chocolate wedding cakes are designed and created in Bristol by boutique cake maker Chocolate Delores.  Every one of these sumptuous delights is handmade to order, using the best quality organic, fair trade and local ingredients. They’re fun, funky, very luxurious and extremely delicious.

The company’s owned by Lizzie, who began making cakes at the age of ten for her family and later became the chief designer and chocolatier at one of Britain’s leading Organic Chocolate Cake companies. She’s now launched this wonderful designer cake business and is creating her own delicious, visually stunning chocolate cakes for Weddings, Birthdays and as she says, 'Vintage Tea Parties'!

The main ingredient of these gorgeous cakes is a delicious 72% dark chocolate. Also in the mix are Fair Trade sugars rich in molasses, organic butter and milk, free-range organic eggs and flours. Once baked and cooled, Lizzie soaks the cakes overnight in Port. They’re then layered with Madagascan vanilla buttercream and her own homemade plum jam. After that, the fun really starts and using white, dark or milk chocolate, Lizzie sets to work designing the cake of your most delicious dreams.  If this is whetting your appetite, don’t worry, as on the day of the fair, you’ll have a chance to have a little taste yourself.

Chocolate Delores have created many fabulous designs for weddings, so I recommend you take a look at their mouth-watering website for more pictures of individual cakes.  
Lizzie’s happy to combine styles and to work with you on any ideas you may have and being based in Bristol, she can deliver locally and beyond.  You’ll also find a section on her site about her chocolate stiletto shoes. Lizzie makes these 
deliciously glamorous shoes to order and we recommend devouring them along with a bottle of Champagne; a perfect way to celebrate any occasion and a wonderful idea for unique Bridesmaid’s favours.

Friday, 30 December 2011

Lovely and Vintage

Lovely & Vintage so accurately describes this company run by Sally O’Hare.  Sally sources vintage dresses and accessories and produces vintage inspired items that will really enhance your wedding day. The company’s own range of jewellery, ring cushions and garters are all hand crafted in the Cotswolds, by people who love to create, with all materials, wherever possible, sourced in the UK.

If you’re looking for something unique, distinctive and extra special, Lovely and Vintage offer beautiful collections of vintage wedding dresses and accessories for sale or for hire, tailored to your individual design or size.  There’s antique lace and vintage jewellery, Victorian and Leavers lace garters both ready and custom made.  The range changes endlessly and they carry so much more than they can show on the website or at the fair, so if you don’t find exactly what you’re looking for, just let them know and they’ll do their very best to find it for you.  

It’s not all about the bride either.  Browse through their website and you’ll discover a real treasure trove and the same can be said for their table at the fair.  Think of an open jewellery box laden with heaps of sparkling things for you to explore and try on.  There’ll be original vintage dresses and wraps too and even something new to look out for.  After a request from a bride at last year’s Bristol Vintage Fair, Sally created a pearl and vintage button bracelet to the bride’s design.  She was so pleased she ordered two more for each of her bridesmaids.  

Since those one-off creations, Sally’s been inundated with requests and has been able to incorporate one bride-to-be’s Grandmother’s pearl and gold buttons and another’s silver locket into bespoke bracelets.  She’ll be bringing some of these beautiful pieces along on the day. They make perfect bridesmaid’s gifts and are such a unique way to transform an old brooch, locket or diamante button into something more contemporary. 

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue…  Lovely & Vintage has something gorgeous for everyone. 

Thursday, 29 December 2011

Clifton Pavilion

We’re lucky enough to be holding our second Bristol Vintage Wedding Fair at this wonderful venue in 2012, but did you know you could hire it for your own wedding?

From the moment you see the Clifton Pavilion you’ll know you’ve found a perfect venue for your big day.  It was purpose built for grand occasions, being both elegant and unique.  It has gorgeous rooms, stunning décor and high ceilings with views from the balcony overlooking the beautiful gardens.

The team behind the venue has a license to perform wedding ceremonies and civil partnerships, so you can enjoy your ceremony as well as your celebrations. Available on an exclusive basis for up to 120 guests and with complimentary access to the zoo gardens, you can enjoy an incredible range of photo opportunities.  Plus, your guests are welcome to explore the zoo and see a host of animals from gorillas to penguins, complete with a soundtrack of roaring lions and the call of the gibbons.

From your first step, through to your big day, Clifton Pavilion’s events team are on hand to assist you with everything from choosing your menu, wine and flowers to your entertainment and table plan. They use the finest locally sourced, sustainable and ethical ingredients to deliver a diverse range of menu options all created by their experienced chefs. Their functions team is professional, helpful and on hand to ensure your day is delivered perfectly, leaving you to relax and enjoy.  
It’s truly a unique setting, so come along to the Fair on 26th February and take a look for yourself.  Entrance to the wedding fair doesn’t include free entry to the Zoo on the day, but there’s so much else to see and do, you won’t have a minute to spare. 

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Miss Jones Lingerie

Introducing Miss Jones… elegant, delicate lingerie inspired by more luxurious times. If you believe in sensuality, you believe in Miss Jones…

Miss Jacqueline Jones is behind every item of the Miss Jones range. A trained theatrical costumier who has styled major period dramas and movies, she’s inspired by both luxury and sensuality. Each piece is carefully made by hand from luxurious silk and French lace, perfectly embellished with Swarovski crystals, beads and pearls and finely appliquéd embroidery. It’s this precise attention to detail combined with inspired design that makes each piece a work of art, as individual as a piece of couture Fashion.

Working from her Bristol studio, Jacqueline will make every item to order and offers a bespoke design service in addition to the online collection.  As everything’s made to your measurements, it’s a very personal service and she’s on hand to offer advice, add embellishments and talk you through your ideas. 
From pretty panties to beautiful bras you can select individual items or have the collection as a whole.  Think garters decorated with an embroidered rose, pure silk ribbon and Swarovski crystals.  Think pretty, daring pasties and flirtatious masks.  Every item harks back to a more luxurious time, giving the collection a flirtatious vintage feel that’s both sensual and romantic.  Make your night special whether you want to be mysterious and alluring or soft and sensual, deliciously naughty or confident and seductive.
Jacqueline is working on two new pieces to launch at the Bristol Vintage Wedding Fair.  There’ll be a sexy kimono-style gown that makes a lovely cover up if you’re not feeling quite so daring and a gorgeous bridal camisole adorned in crystals and pearls.  Miss Jones will also be offering gift vouchers and a 20% discount for orders made on the day.  Come along and see these gorgeous pieces for yourself.  As her website advises; celebrate your femininity, be confident, be sensual; be Miss Jones.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

House of Istria

If you’re looking for a unique hair accessory for your wedding, something a little different to the traditional tiara or vintage style headband then a visit to the House of Istria is a must.  Founder Charlie Kingsland-Barrow creates precious vintage and floral hair accessories using pure Swarovski crystals and pearls, vintage materials, and luxury fabrics.  These are occasion pieces you'll keep forever. 

House of Istria is named after the heart shaped region of Istria in Croatia.  The Romans called it the most beautiful place they had ever seen and with that inspiration always in mind, the designs are stunning.  Everything Charlie creates is vintage or vintage inspired and each piece is made in the spirit of love and romance.  There are vintage bridal headbands, bridal hair flowers, garlands, Swarovski combs and wedding fascinators.  You can choose from the exclusive range available online or make a private appointment to discuss a bespoke accessory.  Many of the current pieces online can also be customised to suit you, for example the colours of the Swarovski crystals can be changed to suit your wedding theme.  Each and every item is made by hand from the studio in the heart of the Cotswolds.

I must admit the online shop is a bit of a treasure trove for the delicate the whimsical and the romantic.  Think pearls, fine laces, hand cut silk petals, twinkling rhinestones and vintage millinery elements.  House of Istria is stocked by The White Rose bridal boutique in Chipping Campden and you’ll find some custom-made pieces on Etsy too.  Some designs have already appeared on the cover of Wedding Ideas Magazine and inside Cotswold Style. You can contact Charlie directly at or browse through her beautiful website and blog.  Best of all, you can meet her and see these pretty pieces up close at the Bristol Vintage Wedding Fair in 2012.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Elysée DS Wedding Car Hire

A Citroën DS for your wedding?  Yes please!  Paul and Nicola Kingscote are the lucky owners of the gorgeous ‘Goddess’, an immaculate cream 1972 Citroën Déesse saloon, a car you too could make a part of your wedding day memories.
Who wouldn’t want to travel to their wedding in such style in the most comfortable car ever built?  You even get your own personal driver and both Nicola and Paul go out of their way to make sure you’re 100% satisfied. The car is as beautiful inside as it is outside.  Citroen didn’t economise on the interiors, the soft leather armchair seats are both sumptuous and spacious and give you the sensation you’re relaxing in your living room.  There’s masses of legroom and amazing all-round visibility.  Being driven in this car is like riding on a cushion of air.

Elysée DS Wedding Car Hire is based in Bristol and this lovely slice of luxury costs much less than you might think.  Prices start at around £300 for a typical wedding in the Bristol area, which includes collecting the bride and father, driving to the Church then taking the newlyweds to the reception.  You can be confident you’re being driven by the owner, who’ll have double and triple-checked the route, plus your car will be elegantly decorated with beautiful ribbons. 

Looking at the Goddess today you can see why it was named the most beautiful car of all time by Classic & Sports Car magazine.  Nicola and Paul love their car and it’s not hard to see why.  They’ll be at the Fair in 2012 and as a special offer, for brides and grooms who commit to a booking on the day [within the Bristol area] there’s a 10% discount!  So be prepared and check out the delightful photos by Liz Armitage on their website, then come along to the Fair and have a chat with two people who can tell you so much more about this gorgeous car. 

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Make Me A Dress

In Spring 2011 Alexandra King launched her debut bridal collection, emphasising the British craftsmanship of her label and concentrating on the individual design and cut of every hand crafted dress.  One look at her wonderful dress archive reveals just some of her beautiful bespoke creations.

Every dress is hand made from start to finish in her small studio near Cheddar with the highest levels of expertise, each design unique for each customer.  Alexandra uses original, vintage techniques authentic to the era of the dress you require and aims to produce each one as ethically and sustainably as possible in the UK, using vintage fabrics, fair trade and organic cottons and sourcing from UK companies who have close contact with the factories they work with.  She keeps track of current trends, but her inspirations come from the golden age of couture, mainly drawing ideas from film and 20th century fashions.  Think traditional design mixed with theatrics and a little sparkle.

Alexandra’s always happy to meet her customers although doesn’t maintain a shop open to the public.  You’re more than welcome to visit for a consultation on your dress and for measuring, but life in the studio is a busy one so all visits are by appointment only.  She also has an online shop and boutiques on both Etsy and Asos.  Dresses from her bridal collection are all made to order to your measurements and take approximately 8 weeks to complete, but do note that due to this hand made process she can only make a limited number of dresses each year!  

In addition to the beautiful bridal creations, you’ll find bridesmaids dresses alongside brilliant bow accessories on her website.  Each item she makes is special and Alexandra King has a rare skill, making sure each creation is as unique and as perfect as it can be without being prohibitively expensive.  I thoroughly recommend browsing the archives on her site and you can see the real deal on the day, as she’ll be exhibiting at the Bristol Vintage Fair in 2012 and bringing along samples of her beautiful designs.   

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

LK Bespoke Bridal

Lisa Keating has been designing and making bespoke bridalwear and handmade corsets for over 24 years and is known for her beautiful creations as well as her ability to make the personal styling experience exciting, effortless and enjoyable.  Working from her home studio, based between the border of South Bristol and North Somerset, she’s within easy reach of the South West and it’s from here that she creates her one off works of art.

Handmade corsets are created to be worn and seen as outer garments and will enhance your natural shape, provide an elegant posture and evoke both romance and beauty.  They can even reduce your waistline by 7 inches! Lisa bases each individual corset on historical patterns, but adapts them for a more comfortable modern fit.  Bridal skirts can also be made to order to coordinate with your corset and corsets as underwear are also available.  Whilst each bespoke item is of an incredibly high standard, they can be made in as little as a few days and are surprisingly affordable.

What makes Lisa so wonderful as a designer is her personal touch.  She will make you feel special as she helps you realise your design.  Each corset is individual, whether you’re looking for a classic, elegant, theatrical or vintage look.  Everything is made to measure and developed from her love and knowledge of fashion history.  She doesn’t make copies; the ideas you bring and the wedding you’re planning inspire everything.

Lisa is incredibly talented and when she’s not designing, she’s teaching corsetry at Heart Space Studios and also runs Vintage Hen Parties where brides to be and guests use traditional techniques to make their own garters or Bridesmaids favours, whilst they sip champagne from vintage teacups.  For the Bristol Vintage Fair, we’re thrilled she’s making a vintage cup corset decorated with hand sewn twisted silk flowers and stems.  I can’t wait to see these beautiful creations and if you can’t either, take a look at some of the divine pieces pictured on Lisa’s website:

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Meticulous Ink

I was absolutely delighted to hear that Meticulous Ink would be exhibiting at the Fair as I’ve had my eye on their beautiful paper products for some time.  Based in the heart of artisan Bath, Athena Cauley-Yu and Charlie Cumming will ensure every element of your wedding stationery reflects you and your perfect day.

Your wedding invitation is the first introduction to your guests and Meticulous Ink can help set the tone, letting friends and family know whether it’s a traditional, relaxed or more outrageous event.  From the choice of letterpressed, engraved or embossed paper to the style of print, each item will be a completely individual, unique design.  From Save the Date cards to the Order of Service, they can customize and print every element of your wedding stationery in whatever format and colour, however elaborate you want.  It’s a fully bespoke design service.  
Intensely passionate about paper both Athena, a stationery designer and typesetter and Charlie, a dedicated illustrator and printer, front this exclusive company and they use beautiful vintage presses dating from 1870 to 1960 alongside time-honoured techniques to achieve that authentic vintage style.

Booking an appointment with Athena is highly recommended.  She’s an invitation specialist and offers personal consultations.  There are so many options for bespoke printing and here you can get the very best advice on the finest options to suit your wedding alongside some vintage inspiration.  Being a small company, they work hard to achieve printing at a very high standard and make sure every order is different to the next.  They’ll oversee your project throughout, from the consultation to design through to the inking of the press and all the quality checking in between.  Taking their inspiration from vintage posters and books to modern designers across the globe, your wedding stationery will be as unique as you wish it to be or as classic as you prefer.  Everything is meticulous in every way.  I can’t wait to see what samples they bring to the Fair in February.

Monday, 5 December 2011

The Wilde Bunch

There is a refreshing wildness to The Wilde Bunch style.  Working with the seasons, scents and how things grow naturally and inspired by wild flora and natural fauna, I love how everything they produce is locally sourced or Fairtrade. 

Their Wedding & Event Consultation service is both friendly and free – either at your chosen venue, home or at their design studio, a very cool barn in Abbotts Leigh, which is bursting with vintage chic. They’ve transformed wedding venues from castles to barns and however grand or intimate your big day, they promise a unique tailor-made service with stunning flowers and all without that 'exclusive' price tag.  Plus they’re totally mobile across Bristol, Somerset, Wiltshire, Dorset & Gloucestershire and not being shop-based, this allows them to offer an entirely exclusive personal design service at very competitive prices and to meet with brides throughout the planning stages and beyond.

Friendly and wonderfully passionate about what she does, owner Claire Nicholson has worked in floral & event design for the last 25 years.  She trained with the Royal Horticultural Society as well as with international florists in Holland and the UK, all of which reflects her dedication to the indulgent but affordable, passionate but practical, unique but accessible and oh so wild, sweet scented and beautiful designs. 

The Wilde Bunch are 'by appointment only' and we’re delighted they’ll be exhibiting at our next Bristol Vintage Wedding Fair in 2012.  They’ll be creating a wonderful featured display, which you’ll see as soon as you walk in, plus designing the handheld bouquets for the vintage dress models you’ll see walking around the venue.  Until then, do check out their website and see some more of their wonderful designs.  

Friday, 2 December 2011

Our poster for this year

We gave Sally Arthur the brief - romantic couple, wedding dress etc and she came up with this amazing artwork!  We couldn't have asked for more  - we just love it ... hope you do too.  Look out for posters and postcards to pass on!

The final few pictures from Liza McCarron

Liza's a friend and another talented photographer who came down and just snapped away on the day.  

Photos from Eddie Deponeo

 Eddie ( kindly came along on the day and took some professional photos.  Here are just a few:

Just a few of my own snapshots from this spring's Fair