It was a task that I was secretly avoiding, even going as far as designing and finding a dress maker to make my Chief Bridesmaids outfit in the meantime, rather than starting the search for my dress. I was worried that as a size 16/18 with hips and a bum that I would be told that I wouldn’t fit into the majority of styles out there. My Chief Bridesmaid, Laura organised appointments at boutiques in and around Newcastle upon Tyne. At Y.A.P Bridal Boutique I was met by my bridal consultant, where I ran through my ideas, my style, my likes and dislikes at the beginning of my appointment.
As soon as I walked in, I noticed the clean white walls and all the thank you cards on the mantel piece, along with the photographs of the reason behind the name of the business. I loved the crushed velvet sofa and for some reason I felt like I had walked into a boutique in France.
I did have a style in mind, I wanted to cover my upper arms so had thought about the style of dress TV presenter Christine Bleakley wore for her wedding day, but with a different bottom half. I was conscious of my curves and felt some styles would draw more attention to them. I wanted something with a little bit of sparkle, but with no lace. I wanted something fitted to pull me in around the waist as I felt it would be more flattering for my shape.
My Bridal Stylist Louise asked a series of questions and then went a little more in depth asking for more details for clarification and really took the time to figure out what I would like and dislike. It was very subtle in the way that she asked me the questions, it felt like we were simply getting to know each other and sharing possible ideas. I was so impressed as I felt confident we would be walking out with the right dress for me.
Louise welcomed us with a warm smile and what I was surprised at was the energy that came from the store even though our appointment was around 4pm on a Saturday. All the staff were energetic and fresh in their manner, it felt as though we were their first appointment of the day. Louise guided us through the process including filling us in on the services the team could offer - nothing was too much trouble at all. Her overall manner was confident but relaxed and in no hurry for me to make a decision. I liked the fact that she allowed me to pick dresses out for myself whilst she selected some too. Louise slowly built up my confidence even when I was making negative comments about my shape and size. Also, whilst trying on the dresses, Joanne, Danni and Heather offered their opinions/ideas as they were working away in the boutique.
After trying on different styles of wedding gowns, I remembered as I walked into the boutique, I had noticed a dress that I liked at the end of one of the rails. As I didn’t feel the connection that so many wedding magazines describe with the first couple of dresses, I thought it was no harm in asking whether I could try the dress I had seen on. Louise surprised me by saying that it was the first dress she thought of and she had been holding on to it to show me, until we had worked through our initial dresses to work out what I liked. The dresses I tried on were all equally beautifully made with stunning details on all of them. The boutique literally caters for all types of brides whether traditional or non-traditional with all the different styles and detailing to go with both categories. When I put my dress on, I loved the shape it gave me. My Chief Bridesmaid Laura and my Mam started to cry which made me a little emotional. I felt that the dress showed off my shape and I felt it was the perfect match for me. It was completely different to what I originally had in mind. I believe someone in heaven was trying to guide me to my gown, as whilst I stood in front of the large ornate mirror in main boutique, an Ed Sheeran song suddenly started to play - which is mine and Christopher’s song. Due to being concerned about my upper arms being on show in a strapless style of gown, Louise and Joanne suggested that their recommended Seamstress Anne could bespoke design and make a bolero for me. Anne created a beautiful piece to match my dress perfectly and even added matching fabric into my gown including extra sparkles to tie it all together.
I walked into the boutique nervous about my shape. I came out of the boutique with my head held high and confident in finding such a professional team who I could trust with my dress and alterations. What I loved most was the welcome I received when coming into the store, I felt like I was the only bride that the Y.A.P team were dealing with and I loved the reason behind the name of the boutique and its belief that each bride has their own individual love story and journey too, as every bride is different.
Tell us more about your day...
• ACCESSORIES •
My shoes were from Ted Baker, in a dusty pink colour with a gold plated bow at the front. My veil and hair slide were purchased from Y.A.P Bridal with the help and advice of Danni and Heather. The veil had a ribbon edging to match my dress and the hair slide the sparkle on my gown. I wore my bespoke bolero designed and created by Anne and I purchased an Ivory cream fur bolero from Coast stores. My blue stoned drop earrings were from Monet in House of Fraser.
• FEELINGS & VENUE •
I was calm and collected on the morning of my wedding, whilst getting my make-up and hair done. But when my Chief Bridesmaid Laura said it was time for me to get into my dress. I felt slightly nervous but excited. I was so happy with how the dress looked and the reaction I gained from walking through the hotel foyer. I felt like a Queen!
On making my way to the venue, I travelled by horse and carriage and was overwhelmed by how many people shouted congratulations and how beautiful I looked. It was a real confidence booster! It was literally the perfect dress for me.
• DETAILS •
Our wedding ceremony was held in the Ladies Pavilion in Central Park in New York City, USA. We wanted a ceremony that represented us and our close family and friends. Our Reverend Annie Lawrence had sent us prior to the ceremony a series of questions relating to marriage and our relationship. She used the answers we gave to make a really personal and intimate service.
Our colour scheme was greys, blues and reds. My Groom organised and purchased personalised, handmade button holes which related to us. The five males in our wedding party had a marvel character each which had a flower attached to the characters hands.
• SUPPLIERS •
All of our suppliers were based in New York City and can be found on Trip Advisor. Our Reverend Annie Lawrence was also on one of the episodes of Don’t tell the Bride for the Alice in Wonderland themed wedding. She was amazing on the day and in the lead up to it. Even with the time difference she was easily reachable and answered any question we sent over via email from recommendations of restaurants to Cello players. She was able to make our ceremony personalised and it really represented us as a couple.
Our Cello Player Margaret Sneddon was a great addition to our ceremony as we asked if she could play our song Ed Sheeran, Tenerife Sun. She was able to send us a recording of her playing the cello to our song. It sounded amazing on a recording never mind in person playing during our vows
The Make-up artist, Laura Nadeau and the Hair Stylist, Amy Gerber were both recommended. During the 5 hours that they worked on myself, Chief Bridesmaid, both Mother of the Bride and Groom and an additional guest they made everyone feel and look amazing both hair and make-up stayed in place for the whole day. Whilst working on all of us, they became part of the celebrations and kept the mood relaxed yet organised.
Our Photographer called Vito from Jasmine Photos has provided us with amazing photographs of our ceremony and we were able to go to the Rockafella Centre where he took some breath-taking photographs of the skyline and us in what looks like a professional photo shoot.
HUGE loves and thank you's to our wonderful Melanie (and her gorgeous Mum who was part of the whole experience with us) ... Such a perfect journey xxx Image credits to Vito at Jasmine Photos xxx