We’re handing over the blogging reigns to Becky Hoh-Hale of A Most Curious Wedding Fair this afternoon, to tell you about the up-coming event she has planned for 4-5 April. This is one of the most creative, forward-thinking wedding events I know about and well worth making an effort to visit.
We’re back, blazing a trail for style savvy brides and grooms with a brand new venue and new additions to the team for 2014. On the 4-5th April, A Most Curious Wedding Fair is taking place at exciting new space and East London creative hub Hackney Downs Studio. With over 80 design and fashion-led exhibitors, inspiration catwalk shows, cool entertainment and a special showcase of up and coming dress and accessory designers in our unique awards bridalNEXT!
It’s the one you don’t want to miss. We are really excited to have expanded the team for 2014 too, by joining forces with the wonderful ruby+diva bridal boutique ladies, our partners on the One Love Wedding Show to ensure this is the most boundary pushing, seamless and most importantly the most useful and fun wedding show you creative, expressive and style-loving couples will ever attend!
Photography Copyright (c) 2014, Joanna Millington
And so to create a shoot that had all of that feeling rolled into a set of images was not without its challenges. In the end, as always I went with my gut instincts, I initially storyboarded a whole bunch of super involved, conceptual ideas, but had a few sleepless nights feeling like maybe I was trying too hard, to apply a thick layer of cool over a bridal story, and it wasn’t quite sitting right.
Imagining myself as a bride, a most curious bride once more and also picking up what my fave wedding photographers were telling me, that the big all singing all dancing highly styled weddings are kind of chilling the heck out, people are just making sure they look slammin’, that the party is rockin’ and the rest falls into place.
Weddings have come a little bit full circle, rather than choosing your theme or look for the wedding and hurriedly, slavishly, trying to find a dress that fits in with it, Brides are thinking, how do I actually want to look? What do I feel is beautiful? And once again returning to that being the focal point. And to be quite honest, I am kinda getting too old to follow fashion completely blindly, yes Most Curious prides itself on soaking up the trends and converting them into a wedding setting but it does remain realistic, level headed with a sense of humour and a grown up cool.
And similarly, many of our couples would not be of a pure hipster crowd age, rather than 19-25 they would be more 25 to 38, people that already knew they’re own sense of style and I didn’t want to alienate or scare anyone off!
So I put down the hipster mags, woke up one morning and thought ‘all I need are beautiful girls in beautiful dresses with beautiful, inspiring photography.’ So I scrapped the storyboards and gave Joanna Millington a call – my original partner in crime on the Most Curious shoots – and thankfully she was said yes and the world seemed to be on the right axis once again!
Having said that, when it came to making sure the cool factor shone through, the special factor couples have come to rely on Most Curious for, I have one word and that word is HAIM. For me, HAIM encapsulate the intelligent, creative, independent, hip style that intelligent, creative, hip woman identify with – aesthetically a mix of 90s grunge, 70s Fleetwood Mac references, long California sun highlighted hair, willowy long legs and leather jackets. So that was a definite inspiration point, you cannot walk anywhere in Hackney, Shoreditch or Dalston, Most Curious’s stomping ground, without seeing this look, so we knew it would strike a chord with our brides.
Brides who were worried they might need to give up their everyday cool for their big day – well fear not, we are here to represent! It’s not that we are saying stick a leather jacket on when you are saying your vows, it’s what the leather jacket represents. But also we if you DO want to wear it while you say your vows, we are saying gosh darn go for it! Yes, there’s a few contradictions going on we do realise, but that’s the open nature of Most Curious – mix it up and make it cool, what ever you feel cool is of course.
So in some ways, the dresses are quite modest and timeless and don’t scream and shout, it is more a feeling of simplicity and beauty, open to interpretation. The longer gowns were supplied by Parisian designer Delphine Manivet and the short dress is bohemian but cute number from Topshop! There wasn’t a crazy set design, with elaborate table settings and decor, it was very stripped back but we did chose to have statement flowers as I think that remains to be a big trend for 2014.
Joanna Millington and I discussed the idea that jewellery should feature as heavily as the flowers – flowers were so huge last year, we also wanted to give other accessories some limelight this time around. We love the current resurgence of 90s styles that are coming back, so gem stones alongside more contemporary geometric shapes came from design-led brand Eclectic Eccentricity to give a feeling of less obviously bridal jewellery.
These brought in gold accents, mirrored in the bronze boots by another classically cool French fashion brand Sezane.
To emphasise the importance of the party that couples are feeling, we added a little sparkle and a touch of deco inspiration with amazing handmade hanging star clusters by UK-based Argentinian designer-maker La bicicleta de Anakleta. We also wanted to bring in even more glitter with an alternative bridal look, that challenged traditional ideas of the dress, something that seemed more red carpet and evening party but still ultra cool, a new, ballsier take on the art deco gatsby glamour that saturated the wedding world last year too. T
Obviously floral crowns have dominated the wedding scene over the past year or two so we wanted to scale them back to a simple circlet and then go a bit ‘most curious’ nuts with one and just have it uber huge, and to take away the big blousey florals and strip it back to branches and a little blossom to give it that harder edge, both offsetting and complimenting the jackets. Jo Flowers, an amazing Norwich based florist who has been featured in Harpers Bazaar, supplied the pieces, including over sized bouquets, another trend we are seeing and some cute magnolia blossom branches, and chrysthanimums with floppy foliage to use in more softly styled shots. For those we also used a beautiful white goose feather cape by Rogue Pony.
Hair was by Sophie Morter at Flint Salon, who ensured we got the all important long, soft locked look we needed as well as some beautiful loose braids for the up dos. Bella Simonsen was the make up artist keeping the feel pared back and beautiful before adding a dark lip and heavy brows and eyes for that 90s grunge feel.
It is one of the simplest but most beautiful shoots we have ever done and it might just be my favourite because of that. Bring on the April, we can’t wait to meet you!
A Most Curious Wedding Fair takes place on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th April 2014 at Hackney Downs Studios in London (click here for a map). There will be over 80 exhibitors waiting to welcom eyou and chat about your unique wedding day plans – assisting you with your ideas and vision. You can keep in touch with us between now and then via Twitter and Facebook.
Sara and Becky
A Most Curious Wedding Fair
Photography – Joanna Millington, assisted by May Chung Photography
Dresses – Delphine Manivet
Shoes – Sezane Paris
Flowers – Jo Flowers
Make Up – Bella Simonsen
Hair: Sophie Morter of Flint Salon Norwich
Jewellery – Eclectic Eccentricity
Stars: Betina Bianculli of La Bicicleta
Silver Skirt and cream top – Lizzie O Boutique
Silver arm cuffs – DC Bouquets
Feathered Cape – Rogue Pony
Styling – Becky Hoh-Hale of A Most Curious Wedding Fair
Leather jackets – Stylist’s own
Models; Ria Foster-Orr, Chiara Mottrioni, Ingrid Borcova
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