Your Bridal Personality, Part 1: The Secret Duchess
At 5 Star Weddings we know brides – our team members have backgrounds in wedding photography, venue management, beauty, and florals – meaning we have seen it all, from the whacky to the wonderful – when it comes to weddings. This week, we have put our heads together to create guides for brides on how to plan a wedding to match your personality.
If you class Pride and Prejudice among your all time favourite books (or films, if you’re partial to Colin Firth in a wet smock), if you think anything can be made prettier with a little bit of lace, and there’s nothing you’d rather gaze upon than England’s green and pleasant lands, then chances are your bridal personality is ‘Secret Duchess’. You’re all about British designers, stunning countryside, and big, beautiful roses.
1 – Isabella Dress; 2 – Marcy Dress (both by Temperley); 3 – Juliet Dress by Jenny Packham; 4 – Caira Shoes; 5 – Snow Queen Couture Shoes (both by Freya Rose); 6 – Raindance Ring by Boodles; 7 – Dior Diorlisse Abricot Nail Care; 8 – Valentino Valentino Donna Perfume; 9 – Chanel Rouge Coco Shine; 10 – Agent Provocateur Lacy Bra. All available at Harrods.
Why deny the truth – the design scheme of the wedding begins with the dress. After all, for anyone who’s daydreamed about the day they walk down the aisle towards the love of their life, they weren’t imagining themselves in jeans and trainers… The Secret Duchess suits a ‘princess’ vibe, but with Kate Middleton redefining our image of ‘princess’ every day, there are plenty of options to choose from in order to channel the vibe without opting for the full-on meringue and twenty foot train. For instance, Alice Temperley’s 2015 bridal range has the most gorgeous, romantic – but wearable – gowns. We adore the Isabella and Marcy dresses, but any one of the collection would make a groom’s eyes well up as his bride-to-be walks down the aisle.
Equally, it is impossible to go wrong with Jenny Packham. The English designer’s 2016 campaign features dresses named after Shakespeare characters – what could be more English than spending the day as Hero, or Juliet? We adore the entire range.
After the perfect dress, come the perfect shoes. For a Secret Duchess, the incredible mother-of-pearl collection by Freya Rose is a must-see. Freya’s gorgeous creations – like the Caira shoe or couture Snow Queen shoe – feature the most beautiful and intricate parquet pattern, made of tiny mother-of-pearl tiles on the heel. If Cinderalla existed in 2015, this would be the shoe she left behind at the ball… See the Freya Rose official listing here.
Don’t forget about what goes underneath the dress, and spoil yourself – and your groom – with an Agent Provocateur lacy bridal bra, and accent your whole outfit with soft, peachy tones. We love the Diorlisse Abricot Nail Care (Harrods) and the ever so feminine Chanel Rouge Coco Shine. Lastly, make sure you remember your big day forever by choosing a new scent especially – Valentino Donna is a timeless and classic scent by the master Italian brand.
The Secret Duchess loves the quintessentially English venue, the sort of place you’re as likely to see Kate Middleton having tea as you are to see Miss Marple solving a murder… For a palatial setting, nothing has a wow factor like Chateau Rhianfa, on the Menai Strait in Wales. Offering a taste of French regal chic, in the heart of Wales’ inimitable countryside, Chateau Rhianfa is Anglesey’s very own fairytale palace. The venue boasts an AA Rosette for cuisine, and has one the most fantastic bridal suite baths we’ve ever seen… Read more on our detailed 5 Star Wedding Directory listing.
Alternatively, consider an exclusive use venue, to really play at being the society hostess. With somewhere like Cain Manor, Surrey, you can take over the entire of the breathtaking Elizabethan house for 24 hours, and treat the place like your home… Discreet service by professionals will make the day go smoothly, but ultimately, the place is yours. The house has the loveliest gardens, and is also surrounded by classic English countryside; rolling fields and green trees. With options to marry indoors or outdoors – weather dependent, obviously – every inch of Cain Manor is just ridiculously photogenic. For more photos, and details, see Cain Manor’s directory listing.
The Little Details (and some not-so-little, like the matter of a groom…)
Think rings by Boodles from Harrods, invitations from the Regal Range by Intricate Creations, florals by Pinstripes and Peonies, bridesmaids in a Susie dress in coral blush, by Ghost, a cake by the incomparable Elizabeth’s Cake Emporium, and finally – a dashing groom in traditional morning dress by Buckleigh of London.
Lastly, the Perfect Planner…
The best wedding planner for a Secret Duchess has got to be Snapdragon Parties, based in Knightsbridge. Their discretion and care with the most high profile clients has gained them a stellar reputation, and they excel at the elegance and exquisiteness of a classic English wedding. To find out more, have a look at their website.