Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Wedding dresses for alternative brides...

Hello lovelies!

I hope this post finds you well!

Today I'm talking about a subject which is somewhat alien to me...that's right, I'm talking weddings!  For those of you that might have missed my little Instagram post, my lovely Mister of twelve years proposed to me whilst we were on holiday in Cannes in August!  It was totally unexpected, private, romantic (at sunset!) and quite emotional!  

Post proposal-when I'd composed myself!

I know what you're thinking...twelve years is a long time to wait to get engaged?!  Well to some it probably is, but to me it couldn't be more perfect.  I love my Mister very much, but I'm quite private about our relationship; tending not to share much about us on my blog and social media. We've lived together for almost seven years and been blissfully happy, and I've never been that big on weddings (they're lovely, I've just never really wanted one!) so I guess I just wasn't really waiting for a proposal! But now I've had one, I've got to start thinking about some sort of *gulp* wedding...eeek!

I use the term wedding loosely because we are most definitely going to elope!  I hate being the centre of attention, so by just having the two of us at our wedding, I know we'll really, really enjoy it and most importantly, get to choose what we want to do.  So whilst we haven't decided where yet (or when for that matter!), my inner fashionista has already started to consider what I might wear to marry my best friend.  This also got me to thinking, I can't be the only bride in the world that begins to shudder at the thought of choosing and wearing a wedding dress, surely?  So, for all of you brides to be out there, that want to wear a nice dress but definitely don't want white (or a wedding gown of any sort for that matter) consider me your new BFF as I take you through my thought process of choosing my alternative wedding attire.

Needle and Thread

I can't be the only girl in the world that loves to stroke these dresses, right?  Needle and Thread dresses are stunning; I've always wanted to own one but I've never had a glamorous enough event to go to that warrants their price tag.  In wedding gown price terms though, they're pocket money.  Expensive and detailed enough to make you feel special but no where near wedding gown or high-end designer dress prices, they're my favourite so far in my dress search.   Coming in a range of styles, lengths and prices, you're sure to find something wedding worthy, even if you're simply looking for a dress to wear as a wedding guest.  Here are some of my current favourites...

Comet embellished midi dress, £300, Harrods

Whisper prom dress, £450.74, Revolve

Whisper Posy Bodice Dress, from £175 via Lyst


Self-portrait dresses are absolutely amazing!  Each dress is flawless and unique, but the brand is instantly recognisable and aesthetically pleasing.  These dresses are for funky brides, a bride who dares to be different.  My main reservation is that many of the styles that I like wouldn't really suit a larger bust (I'm teeny, but my boobs are not!!) but if you're smaller-chested, the dresses with spaghetti straps are to die for (and similar to Needle and Thread, are much more budget conscious than bank-breaking!!).  Here's what I would choose...

Lace embroidered dress, £341, Farfetch

Shoulder Knot Lace Mini Dress, £280, Mytheresa

Blue Peony Mini Dress, £125 via Lyst

Wild cards!

I've looked mostly at the two afore mentioned brands, as they were the first I thought of when I pictured myself in my version of a wedding dress.  But there are so many great dresses out there, just waiting to be found!  As an extra tip, if you use a website like Lyst, and type a brand name, or something as simple as 'wedding dresses' into their search engine, they cleverly find and collate the most gorgeous pieces on sale from stores all across the web, so you might even find yourself a bargain too!  You're welcome!

Thea Dress, £322, Reformation
It wouldn't be my style-but wow this dress is amazing! 

Asos Wedding Frill Shoulder Detail Maxi Dress, £45.50, Asos

Delicate Beaded Bodice Maxi, £85, Asos

With so much choice out there, I'm so glad that I'm taking a non-traditional wedding dress route!  Now the difficult part will just be making a final decision!  All I know is, whatever dress I choose, it's definitely going to be paired with some expensive designer shoes; if getting married isn't a good enough excuse, I'll never have one!  Valentino anyone?

Thanks for reading,

Kayleigh x

*This was a collaborative post, but all opinions are my own.  All images are taken from the corresponding websites for each dress and are not my own (other than the first image).*


Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Visiting Dé Lisa Boutique, Grasse...

Hello lovelies!

I hope this post finds you well?

I have lots of interesting fashion posts coming over the next few weeks (I hope to get caught up as I have so much to share with you all!) but I thought I'd start with a couple from my trip to the South of France.

This holiday was my third to the French Riviera; my Mister and I seem to have adopted it as our second home we love it so much!  Although we always stay in Cannes, we try to visit different places each holiday and this time we had Grasse on our hit list.  For those of you that are unaware, Grasse is the perfume capital of the South of France.  If you think of all the famous French fashion houses, many of them make perfumes or source ingredients from this beautiful little place.  Both Chanel and Dior as examples have flower fields in Grasse farmed for ingredients to contribute to No 5 and Miss Dior as well as many of their other signature scents.  I won't talk too much about perfume, as I also visited a Dior perfume exhibition and want to share this with you in a separate post (it was a goodie!!).

Beautiful views of Grasse

Before I left for my French vacay, my lovely milliner friend Margaret Woodliff-Wright (who you may remember from my Fenwick visit here) suggested that I look up another talented milliner, Lisa, whose shop and workshop, Délisa boutique, is based in Grasse.  

Lisa's space is situated on the Rue de L'Oratoire; the shops in Grasse are pretty much all together in a loop, so if you're wandering around you'll definitely find it.  My main concern with meeting her was that I wasn't sure if she was French or English; my French is okay and I try to speak as much as I can, but I am by no means fluent, so I was worried that I might struggle to introduce myself properly (and my link to Margaret!).  We wandered into Lisa's place and she introduced herself to us in the most beautiful French accent...followed by an English translation when we looked at her bewilderedly!  Lisa is English, but fluent in French-but if you're visiting France she'll be really excited to speak to you in her Mother tongue, so be sure to drop in!

Lisa is warm and welcoming and I was really excited to learn about her hats.  Her shop is a cornucopia of all things headwear; she also stocks scarves, purses and other little knick-knacks, all beautiful and reasonably priced.  She explained to us that she stocks a lot of straw hats, as in the Riviera summer heat this is usually what the customer wants.  The popular straw hat of the season this year was the boater, a hat shape that I always associate with France because of Coco Chanel.  Chanel famously made boaters when she was first starting out as a designer.  Although Lisa doesn't make the straw boaters, she had some beautiful ones in stock.  Lisa's speciality is fabric and I fell in love with her reversible combination fabric and straw hat.  Such a neat idea and perfect for keeping out of the sun; plus there's always something quite glamorous about an oversized floppy straw-rimmed hat! I also loved some of her berets, perfect for winters in the UK; I'm already thinking about purchasing something the next time I get to visit!

Lisa kindly let me try on some hats, and I was drawn to this beautiful yellow straw number.  I was so red from the sun that although the hat was beautiful, I'm not sure it was my best look!!

It was really interesting to hear about how Lisa fell in love with France at an early age when she visited as part of a school exchange programme years ago.  She also told us that when she first moved there, she spoke French to anyone and everyone so she could master the language fully (which she certainly has!).  As for her business, it's going amazingly and she's just in the process of expanding-there's even talk of her offering some craft-based holidays too!

I'm really glad I got to meet Lisa-I plan to collaborate with her on more blog posts in the future to keep you updated on her latest and to show you more of her millinery skills-she's a super talented lady and quite possibly one of the warmest and friendliest people I have ever met; thanks so much Lisa for welcoming us into your world with open arms (and for helping us choose where to visit in Grasse!).

You can find Lisa on instagram or check out her website here.

Until next time,

Kay xxx
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