THE BEST MODERN MINIMALIST WEDDING DRESSES FOR FUSS FREE BRIDES

I thought I’d do a round-up of the best dresses for those looking for a stylish but simple, elegant and minimalist wedding dress. Whilst there are always undoubtedly going to be boho brides that are lace lovers, romantic dreamers of layers of floaty tulle and glamorous magpies that want all the sparkle, not every bride wants to be overtly girly or to coin a term overly ‘bride-y’ as some of my own clients have said… not sure if that’s a term but we all know what it implies.

By minimalist, I’m talking clean lines, sharp structures, simple silhouettes and not too much embellishment, frill or ‘fuss’. Simple definitely doesn’t mean boring, in fact like many things the simpler the design the harder it is to get right, as it’s ever more important for the fit, cut and fabric to be perfect. Here are some of my favourite styles and designers that I think are getting it oh so right with the perfect balance of simple, elegant and definitely chic.

This post would have been a lot bigger/longer but I decided to keep it to designers or styles that are (to my knowledge) available in London or the UK, nothing more annoying than seeing a dress that’s only available in Australia… yes Pinterest, I’m looking at you!

A refreshingly understated beauty. This dress is soft luxurious knit fabric which has a bit of stretch which skims and hugs curves in all the right places and a full train adds a touch of drama. The beautiful high boat neckline is elegant and sophisticated whilst the low and open back are alluring and modern. Also long sleeves are just my favourite right now.

This is a youthful, sexy but paired back look, the Harper slipper satin wedding dress with shoestring straps and low shaped back looks great on it’s own, or perhaps worn with a lace top overlay for more coverage for the ceremony or throw on a feather jacket for a winter wedding. I’m loving it teamed with the casual half up top knot.

A seriously gorgeous silhouette, and a dress that I think, would pretty much suit ladies of all shapes and sizes and for all styles of wedding. With a lovely V neckline, this dress features an extra low square back to the waist, a flattering bias cut skirt with contrast waistband and the delicate button detailing on the back with puddle train. The beauty of a simple dress is that you can add accessories, shoes and even style your hair and make up in so many different ways without being limited. Anything goes.

Hands up who’s back to the wedding planning after a little break with the festivities? If you’re at the start of the planning or newly engaged, then no doubt you will be searching for your wedding venue. It’s important to find somewhere that not only tick’s off most (if not all!) of your ‘wish list’ requirements but also somewhere that feels right and that has the flexibility to suit your style.

ONE WEDDINGS have three beautiful London wedding venues that could well be worth considering, each offering flexibility and something slightly unique, whether you are looking for a ‘dry hire’ venue or a fully bespoke service.

For those perhaps choosing London as a destination wedding with many guests coming near and far it’s good to consider location so that travelling to and from the wedding is convenient for everyone (especially those who are not from London or the UK) and of course that you choose a venue with a large enough capacity.
ONE MARYLEBONE and it’s flexible spaces can certainly offer good capacity and is in an incredible location (you may even recognise the building if you are a Londoner!). The venue was built in 1826 and designed by Sir John Soane (the parents will like approve of that!), and stands on its own ‘island’ just moments from Regent’s Park (think of the photo opportunities nearby!). I think your guests would be pretty impressed arriving to this!

One of our favourite spots for a ceremony in London, the atmospheric ASYLUM CHAPEL in Peckham followed by an elegant ‘tropical’ styled reception at the beautiful HORNIMAN MUSEUM conservatory with it’s amazing vista over London from Forest Hill, South London.

Tracy and Chris were married in July last year, and we love this couple’s personal style and how they’ve injected their own fashion into the bridal outfits. We’re big big fans of bridal separates or two pieces, and Tracy’s very figure flattering choice of Pennington skirt and Caplan top by RIME ARODAKY looks seriously cool, feminine and modern. We love how she’s teamed it with a statement fashion forward headpiece by designer LUNA BEA and I think we’ll be seeing much more statement headwear on 2017 brides to come!

A mention has to go to the super cool flower girl in her bespoke House of Hackney fabric outfit. How fabulous does she look and so fitting for this ‘Tropical Victorian’ themed wedding which was even translated into the reception venue from the florals to the food and even the gin!

LONDON BRIDE’S ‘HIDDEN LONDON’ ROMANTIC GUIDE

I know us lot living in London are often on the first Eurostar to Paris when we want a romantic break, but I’m here to tell you that London does have some pretty amazing hidden London romantic gems right on your doorstep! 

I wanted to share some of my personal favourite places (all of which I’ve visited/discovered through my many years here!) which I think make the perfect spot to visit for a cultural, romantic day out, date night or perhaps even a London proposal… 

I visited this only recently (although, sadly winter isn’t the best time to view it!) but I can’t wait to come back in the Spring as this location is just SO stunning. A slightly secretive looking staircase has you strolling along the pergola, a raised walkway, where you are amongst the trees and flowers with expanded views over leafy Hampstead and you feel a million miles away from the city and more like being a character in an Edwardian Novel. It has a slightly faded grandeur about it, which only adds to it’s charm and character which personally I love. Highly recommend bringing a picnic to make the most of the visit (and a camera, it’s seriously photogenic). 

Cosy up in a corner of THE HOLLYBUSH PUB which is more than 200 years old, you don’t get a more traditional and old fashioned pub than this.

Greenwich is so underrated by us Londoners. Yes it’s across the river, but it’s such a lovely place to visit and lots to see and do. It is a bit touristy (Cutty Sark!) but such a great place to make a day-trip of. Bonus points as you can reach it by boat (WHILST HAVING AFTERNOON TEA ON BOARD) or by hopping on the EMIRATES AIR LINE cable car (if you don’t mind heights!). 

It’s worth making the journey to Greenwich Park and the (steep, this calls for no heels!) climb to the top of the hill to feel like King (or Queen) of the Castle. This vista quite possibly beats any London view for me (head to the statue of General Wolfe for the best spot).  The photo above may fool you into it being a quiet spot, but sadly it’s unlikely you’ll be alone.

The ROYAL OBSERVATORY is the home of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), so for those history and geographical lovers, you can stand on The MERIDIAN LINE (Longitude zero, where every place on Earth is measured in terms of its angle east or west from this line). You do need to book for this though. Maybe you can make a pun of it being ‘About Time’ if you are proposing… geddit? 

For something a bit more hip (by hip, I sort of mean hippy) in the summer months, head to FARMOPOLIS on Greenwich Jetty for seriously good locally sourced organic food on a floating restaurant. Note the toilets here are far from romantic. You’ve been warned.

Oh St Pancras. Once a place I used to be scared to walk through and now, one of my favourite areas, much more than just a travel destination with it’s amazing architecture and atmosphere. 

However if you, like me, can’t make it out of the right exit from the trains without having an argument (don’t get me started on the vortex that is the Kings Cross underground exit systems, argh!) then the best thing to do is head into the amazing architecture that is the ST PANCRAS RENAISSANCE HOTEL (designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott) through the lovely lobby and out into the station on the upper level ‘Grand Terrace’ concourse. Make your way to the imposing ‘THE LOVERS’ STATUE, which makes for a very romantic rendevouz…. ‘Meet me at The Lovers at 8pm’  has a pretty nice ring to it. 

Whilst I’m no train spotter, there’s something about trains, and travel that feels romantic, and with the imposing and impressive statuesque Kissing couple you can’t not feel a little bit loved up. Lucky for you it’s a great spot to have a cocktail in the glamorous BOOKING OFFICE restaurant, or if you really want to go the whole hog, maybe Oysters a glass of bubbly at SEARCY’S CHAMPAGNE BAR the longest Champagne bar in Europe apparently!  

Brownie points if you can play the piano and serenade your date on the SIR ELTON JOHN PIANO in the station concourse (in front of hundreds of strangers, no pressure?). There HAS to have been a proposal like this….?

Finish with dinner and a cocktail just next door in the decadent 1920s inspired GREAT NORTHERN HOTEL at PLUM & SPILT MILK or GNH BAR or there’s plenty more exploring to do nearby at GRANARY SQUARE, a great hotspot on the canal with a theatre, lots of restaurants and a fancy fountain display that I dare you to run through.

FLORALS & CAKES FOR A STYLISH 70S INSPIRED BOHO HACKNEY WEDDING

I think it goes without saying that Khaly’s bridal style is effortless, boho elegance at it’s finest. The ORIGINAL VINTAGE 70S off the shoulder layered lace gown is relaxed but feminine and with her dark flowing locks, soft metallic eyes and that incredible headpiece by JOANNA REED she looks every inch the perfect boho bride with her dashing groom in blue. Not to mention her girls looking fair maids in their floor length dark floral dresses (from Marks and Spencer’s would you believe, just goes to show keep your mind open!),

The super cool boho chic backdrop of photographic location THE ROOST in Hackney was not only a local venue for them, but one that complimented this couple’s style perfectly. Ending the night with a DJ dance party in the basement and a pizza van is a pretty good way to see the evening out I say.

Also worth noting to anyone thinking about speeches, and how you imagine they’ll be a few minutes each at the most, as these guys prove, they can go on for over an hour so you might want to keep that in mind! Sounds like they were worth every minute.

If you’re looking for laid back inspiration done with style then this should be it! Gorgeous couple Claudine and Rob chose to celebrate in Peckham with an intimate civil ceremony at their local registry office followed by a fun pun reception. Given the bride is an illustrator there are lots of lovely creative touches that enabled them to put their style to the day and we love their laid back vintage style and use of dried flowers. Also, is there any better location for portraits than a London rooftop car park? Great work by WE HEART PICTURES PHOTOGRAPHY.

Couple Laura and Alex had a perfectly relaxed summer’s day wedding in Islington for their day in August. Starting at ISLINGTON TOWN HALL for their ceremony they then took some time out for some portraits in the nearby streets with their photographer GEN. We adore bride Laura’s peachy pink NEEDLE & THREAD wedding dress, and think Alex makes an equally dashing groom in his bespoke ALEXANDRA WOOD suit!

We love the capture of all the little looks during the ceremony and those of the couple with their little girl as a family, so cute! The little touches during the day from the tube themed tables to the mixed CD’s were lovely ways to personalise their restaurant reception, and I just have to mention that wedding cheese cake…it looks amazing and I imagine the guests enjoyed tucking into that!

You’ll have by now seen my post on some of my ‘hidden’ places in London to enjoy, and one of them being Greenwich, an area that I’m really fond of in London.

Steeped in history and nautical inspiration, one of the main attractions to Greenwich is the CUTTY SARK. A 19th century legendary British (tea) clipper ship, that recently underwent a huge restoration after a fire, and you may or may not realise but it’s actually an event space and a wedding venue!

This beautiful fine art nautical editorial shoot, inspired by painter Turner’s swirling skies and a touch of drama inspired by the novel Jamaica Inn, offers such gorgeous soft painterly inspiration with a wonderful historic backdrop. You almost wouldn’t believe it was London would you? I love how you can see the tall city skyscrapers in the distance, reminding you of the urban backdrop.

With a focus on the craft and history of the boat, the details tied together perfectly; handwritten notes, a tea station, the dining table with pastel flowers and patterned teacups, a delicate but stunning cake and of course the incredible dresses that got swept away by the breeze….

GRACE LOVES LACE COMES TO SHOREDITCH, LONDON

You may well have noticed in the last year, the Australian bridal and wedding industry is really leading the way in terms of style. Relaxed yet elegant, stylish yet romantic, they just have that effortless je ne sais quoi. If you like me, are just loving everything that seems to be coming out of the Australian bridal world, then I have some exciting news!

High up in the style stakes and sought after by the super cool, boho brides around the world, bridal designer GRACE LOVES LACE  are launching a UK showroom, and where else would a leading, style focussed bridal brand have their boutique? In Shoreditch in London, of course!

THE GRACE LOVES LACE LONDON SHOWROOM WILL OPEN ITS DOORS ON APRIL 18, 2017, SO IF YOU’RE A BRIDE TO BE (OR BRIDESMAID, YOU’LL CERTAINLY GET BROWNIE POINTS FOR SHARING) LOOKING FOR AN UN-TRADITIONAL LAID BACK ELEGANT STYLE WITH A BOHO EDGE, THEN YOU’LL WANT TO BOOK AN APPOINTMENT PRONTO!

“We have always had such a loyal following in the UK and Europe, and there is such a demand for us to have a permanent base over there. My family are from Europe and I spent a large part of my childhood and adult years there, making it a very special second home to me. I can’t tell you how excited we all are to be bringing Grace Loves Lace to London in a truly magical space.

After opening our first international showroom in Los Angeles, California last July, we knew that London would be next.  We have always been so inspired by the European lifestyle and the European woman, she is the core of our brand. She is chic, sophisticated and full of passion, just like our GLL women.

Our gowns are designed and constructed for the woman who wants ‘The Dress’ that embraces and compliments the body. We stay clear of structured and restrictive designs and fabrics, instead we are all about celebrating our women as effortless, sexy and naturally glamorous.”

As the designs are only exclusively available online, the new London showroom offers a great chance for European bides to be to visit the showroom to experience the brand’s exquisite French laces and one-of-a-kind designs in person.  They are all about making the process of finding ‘The One’ to be a stress-free experience (that’s what we like to hear), and plans for the showroom’s aesthetic will feature luxurious blush and gold accents (ahem, instagrammable?), and you’ll be able to sip on black rose tea and nibble on macarons – it certainly sounds like a calming environment for all you London Brides!

Inspired by the absolutely stunning ‘SOHO’ GOWN, we thought we’d have some fun and put together a style board that captures that Grace Loves Lace style, relaxed, elegant but with a little bit of La Boheme!