Thursday, 14 March 2013

Something Old, Something New...

Image from the vintage  singer
It's officially wedding season! the first flowers are blooming and so are the wedding fairs. They're popping up everywhere, trying to lure brides-to-be in and sell them lots of "essential" products for their weddings. But why always buy everything new when it has been done so many times before and with so much style?! Why not try a Vintage wedding? It's beautiful, it's in and it's much more sustainable.
Last week, I went along to the Frock Around the Clock  Bridal Vintage Fair in the beautiful surroundings of Malone House to give you a taste of some of the gorgeous vintage and local design products out there. Believe me, I wanted to get married all over again!

Decadence Vintage  make sure their Frock Around the Clock Vintage Fairs are a real experience. Usually set in gorgeous venues, they not only showcase vintage but recycled and local design wares as well, while retro entertainment and music create a glamorous shopping atmosphere.

"Exhibitors at Decadence events are either vintage dealers who source unique items from across the globe, or local creative designers who produce beautiful handcrafted fashion and jewellery pieces from recycled textiles. Therefore buyers can be confident that they are supporting eco-friendly and local small businesses..."
Becky from Decadence Vintage

Let's start out with the best bit, shall we? Dresses!

1930's silk wedding dress from Archive 12 

Archive 12
sells the most stunning original vintage dresses. Hand-picked by fashion stylist Claire Leese, the dresses span decades from the 1920's to the 1970's. Each dress is restored by Claire herself and brought to a bespoke finish. I fell in love with this cute 1960's dress, what a stylish bride this must have been!

1960's cream lace button front dress by Archive 12
Now that we have the vintage dress of our dreams, we can think about Accessories. One thing I love about attending weddings in Ireland is the hair accessories. Be it a veil for the bride, a hat for the mother-in-law, a fascinator for the bridesmaid or a simple hairband for the girlfriend: everyone gets to wear something in their hair. And hair pieces at Irish weddings come in all the colours of the rainbow with sparkles, feathers and lots of glitter!

If you're looking for a real eye-catcher, a true one-off design, have a look at the beautiful creations of Irish milliner Marie Claire Ferguson.

Left: Marie's stall at the fair. Right: Some of the beautiful headpieces from: Marie Claire Ferguson
Delicate, airy and gravity-defying, Marie hand-makes each of her pieces and tailors it completely to your wishes. Working with her and benefiting from her expert advice, you will end up with a stunning, bespoke design that matches your outfit perfectly.

As a bride you may want to go a bit more traditional with a beautiful vintage-style veil or beaded headband. My friend, the lovely Niamh, and I fell in love with this intricately hand-beaded headband by English designer Donna CrainNiamh, who is getting married in October, was kind enough to model the piece for the blog. I think it looks amazing on her dark hair.

Left: Niamh wearing headband by Donna Crain, Right: Vintage Veils by Visionary veils

Donna Crain's pieces are hand-beaded so you have to allow up to four weeks for delivery... I think we can understand why! In Ireland her pieces are sold by Visionary VeilsRebekah McCann-Williams, owner and designer of Visionary Veils, has created a special range of simple veils that go with the Donna Crain hairbands. Visionary Veil is the only bespoke wedding veil designer in Ireland. Rebekah hand-makes all of the veils in her collection. Her vintage range is inspired by iconic shapes and styles of the past. Have a closer look at her gorgeous designs here.

Apart from what you could put in your hair, let's have a look at what you could hold in your hands. A flower bouquet is usually the way to go... but they are not the most durable (Mine fell apart while walking out of the church!). So if you're looking for something a bit more sturdy and quirky, but still delicate and girly, these brooch bouquets by Innocent Chaos might be the thing for you.

Brooch bouquets by Innocent Chaos

Hand-crafted from various trinkets and ornaments, such as vintage and modern brooches, pins, buttons, and earrings, each bouquet has a story to tell. I love that they look as if taken straight out of a fairy-tale  Textile artist Sharon Hay, the face behind Innocent Chaos, will also create bespoke pieces according to your wishes.

Last but not least: Rings. Due to their value, vintage wedding rings are probably the most common vintage "wedding item". I don't need to convince you of their beauty. I thought I'd just show you one of my favourites. This is my friend Emma's sparkler. It's almost a hundred years old, dating from around 1915. Emma is getting married this summer... sure with a ring like that, how could you have said no?

Did you wear anything vintage or second-hand at your wedding? 
Do you know of any great vintage wedding places? 

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