• SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: Fin Flükra

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF 

    I’m Cat – the spectacular, spectacle-wearing lady person who founded Fin Flükra. We specialise in creating boundary-breaking weddings for modern couples planning to marry or elope in Scotland. How best to describe me? My personality is pretty much a mix of Monica Geller (73%) with a smattering of Phoebe Buffay (27%)… the perfect combination of super organised whilst still having plenty of fun!

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS? 

    My boyfriend (now husband) turned to me whilst walking along the beach in Nairn, Scotland when we were discussing our future career paths and said to me… ‘what about wedding planning?’. The seed was planted and I never looked back!

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE? 

    Currently, due to the current situation, A LOT of my time over the past year has been supporting my couples through postponing their plans, working with their venues and suppliers to find an alternative that suits everyone as much as possible. As well as discussing scaling down their guest list and helping them reimagine their day for those choosing to go ahead. It’s been a real rollercoaster for everyone this year and it’s a privilege to be trusted by my couples to support them throughout these challenges.

    Prior to the pandemic, my days varied… I start the day off with a cup of tea and some custard cream biscuits, emails, seating plans, researching suppliers/venues, site visits, emails, updating social media, meetings with couples or suppliers, more tea and custard cream biscuits, timelines, design briefs, calls and so on… there’s no such thing as a typical day in my job and I love the variety it brings!

    Plus on a wedding day itself, I can easily cover at least the distance of a half marathon over a 10-12 hour day ensuring everything is exactly as planned. As one of my brides called me – a wedding ninja! I’ll take that thank you very much :)

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB? 

    My couples – simple. I ADORE my couples and getting to work closely with them for on average 18 months to plan their wedding is a really intimate and unique experience (although with COVID some will be stuck with me for nearly 3 years by the time their wedding comes round!). Seeing them say their vows to one another on their wedding day is always a sucker punch for me and I can usually be found hidden at the back having a good sob cause I’m so happy for them… the best part of the job 100%!

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: THE TERRACE LONDON

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF 

    My name is Dean I am a florist and am the owner and founder of The Terrace London.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS? 

    I have been a florist for over 16 years now, and many of those years I worked as a Mayfair florist, working with some incredible clients and stunning venues and events. I love the simplicity and beauty of flowers and I wanted to create something for myself so I can showcase my style and my passion.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE? 

    It varies quite often, anything from meeting new clients to an event or a couple planning a wedding, to walking around the flower market and seeing which flowers are in season and organising what I need. So much of this job is in the planning, the ordering and making sure the flowers look the absolute best they can on the day.

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB? 

    I love meeting new clients. It’s the excitement of an upcoming event, how we connect and the discussions of what they are looking for and how I can bring that vision to life.

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: THE TOW BAR

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF 

    Hello from The Tow Bar! Our mobile wedding and events bar business is owned and operated by Keith Emslie. With years of experience in the drinks industry running a mobile bar has always been a dream. I LOVE weddings and seeing how much of an individual stamp our couples put on their special day. We are best suited to creative, design focused couples looking for something special. Our range of drinks is an unrivalled selection of craft beer, hand made gin and some beautiful champagne, prosecco and cocktails. We can serve welcome drinks from The Tow Bar and have a couple of indoor bars to keep the drinks flowing all night!

    Our small team is supported by Robin Burns who designed and built The Tow Bar. Our digital marketing is taken care of by Rod Richmond and Cameron Mitchell make lots of magic happen behind the scenes on the operations side of things! Together we make a dedicated team focused on creating the very best weddings in Scotland.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS?

    As things slowed down during the various lockdowns we found ourselves desperate for a creative outlet. We had always dreamed of building out own wedding bar but never found the time to do it. With more time on our hands than we’d had for years it all made perfect sense!

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE?

    Every wedding we take care of is as different as the couples themselves! We spend a huge amount of time customising each individual wedding booking we receive. Creating different options for our couples is great fun. This side of things takes up a lot of our time as we trawl through various suppliers’ wine lists and work on customised cocktail options. 

    The rest of our time is focused on planning alongside venues to make everything focused on creating the very best wedding possible. A lot of work goes on which our couples don’t ever realise to make their wedding day seamless and relaxed. The best venues we work with combine their rustic charm with a can do attitude to make everything flow without a hitch!

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?

    Our video calls to plan with our couples. It is so fun to hear what each couple has in mind for their special day and to create a drinks package which ticks all of their boxes. Being able to point out things they might not have thought about yet is great too! This relationship we form with each couple is definitely the best part of our job!

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: PAOLA DE PAOLA PHOTOGRAPHY

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF 

    – Colourful, emotional, fun, relaxed documentary photography. 

    Hi, I am Paola a wedding photographer based in London, originally from Italy. 
    I’m adventurous, non-conformist and completely non-judgemental. I believe in celebrating originality and diversity, embracing life in all its form. 
    My husband is Anglo-Caribbean and my children are of mixed heritage. 
    There is nothing more exciting for me than discovering new way of thinking, new way of living.
    Things I love, my bike, running, exploring, nature, upcycling, re-creating, re-inventing, coffee, and my lovely family. 
    Music makes me rock, I love tattoos, I adore meeting people and I can chat in five different languages! English, Italian, Portuguese Brazilian, Spanish and French.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS? 

    What made me start my wedding photography business? 
    In 2012 I fell in love with a Blog called Rock ‘n’ Roll Brides, an alternative wedding blog by Kat, covering unique and non-traditional weddings. Initially was the excitement of discovering that wedding DON’T have to be boring and old fashion, now I’m know what I love most is the beautiful imperfection of things, created with love by people that don’t conform. Make your wedding your very special and unique event, do it your way!

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE? 

    Well, very different now that we still under the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions but pre-pandemic it would have being…
    take the children to school, then back to the office, check emails, make calls, editing, social media.
    If it is a wedding day, I will be completing in a zone, fully engaged in preparing for the big day.

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB? 

    The best part of my job is definitely meeting people. 
    I absolutely adore discovering their stories, I get very excited and I always want to help. 
    I have so many ideas and if asked I can suggest suppliers.
    I’m very passionate about what I do, very Italian indeed.

    “We hired a photographer, but we leave the wedding with so much more. We are honoured to have had such an artist as Paola capture our day, and we are delighted to now call her a good friend. Paola doesn’t sell photos, she sells Paola, and amazing photography just happens in the process”
    — MARK & GEOFF

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: Jessica Grace Photography

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF

    Hello Jessica here, but please do call me Jesse. I offer natural wedding photography in Surrey and beyond. My ‘thing’ is that I love to capture the real you; the natural, creative and comfortable you. So, that’s how my photography is: natural, creative and comfortable.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS?

    I was working as a camera assistant for very well know studio photographers in London. Lots of famous people, long hours, moving lights and setting up cameras, studio settings. A friend of a friend asked if I would second shoot a wedding. Before second shoot this I had never actually attended a wedding before! Having my camera in my had the whole day was like a lightning. I felt creative ALL DAY and I was doing what I loved. I was taking pictures. I didn’t realise how unfulfilled and how un-creative being a camera assistant had made me. Once I had second shot that wedding – I never looked back.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE?

    I like to start my morning with a coffee. Always! If I am not photographing a wedding I will go for a run to get myself moving and get out. Then the rest of the day is admin and editing. During the summer I wake up at 5am to get all of my editing done by about 1pm and then I have time to read in the sun or see friends and family.

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?

    I’m pretty sure I have the best job ever. For one, I never have a bad day at work. I am witnessing people on the happiest day of their lives and that is infectious! My face hurts at the end of the day from smiling so much. I love to chat and am very sociable so at weddings I get an extended friendship and family group. So, it’s pretty great.

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: PHOTOS BY JESS ROSE

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF 

    Hi, I’m Jess; a spirited, coffee-fuelled Feminist based in North West London with my sax-playing wife, Lara & our cool-kid Idris (6). I take photos of Feminist and LGBT+ weddings in London, across the UK and beyond.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS? 

    I knew I wanted to specialise in LGBT+ and Feminist weddings after a tiny lesbian wedding in Scotland in 2017. We were joined for the ceremony by a legend of a celebrant, who afterwards directed a portrait session with the two brides. As much as we all protested and giggled, he couldn’t help but try to direct them – enthusiastically – into heteronormative poses; the one in a suit must be the more masculine of the two! 

    His heart was in the right place, but LGBT+ couples need LGBT+ suppliers who get that there’s more to us than stereotypes.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE? 

    The first thing I do every day is make my wife a good (strong) coffee! Our little boy has started reading first thing, which gives us a lovely bit of time to chat and wake up. Pre-Covid times, I’d often have a couples session to photograph somewhere in London, so after some admin in the morning I’d set off on my bike and aim to be home by the school-run! Evenings would be spent all together, then usually Lara and me would head to one of her gigs. How I miss those days!

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB? 

    Meeting so many interesting people and seeing the dynamics between them unfold during a wedding day.

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: Katrina Matthews Photography

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF

    Hey, I’m Katrina a wedding & portrait photographer from Hertfordshire. I’ve been shooting weddings for over 6 years now and I’ve loved every minute!
    I’m a huge animal lover so always encourage pets on shoots, especially at weddings and really embrace unique and alternative ideas that couples throw my way. 
    Travel & food come next on the list of my favourite things (after animals of course) and you will often find me tucking into a cheeky cake from the local coffee shop.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS? 

    I have always been creative and started my journey at university studying textile design, dabbling in textile design for interiors and visual merchandising before finding myself on this incredible path as a wedding & portrait photographer. 

    As with so many other photographers this wonderful career started as a hobby but I kept pushing and educating myself until I got my first studio job. I loved the job but working for myself and having full creative control was always the dream. A year into my portrait studio position I made the jump into self employment and have never looked back.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE? 

    When I’m shooting a wedding there isn’t really ever a typical day, every wedding is so different and I’m so lucky to work at such a variety of venues my working days change so much.
    But a typical day at home would start with a lovely morning walk with my beagle Bonnie (a little fresh air in the morning works a treat). Once I’m home and sat at my desk I usually get on with emails first, do a bit of admin, before allowing myself a few hours at least to catch up on editing.
    I usually have a few portrait sessions each week too so I often have to prep my equipment and spend a few hours out of the house for those too. It’s so hard to have a routine because every week is different but that’s something I love about my job.

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB? 

    Best part of my job is 100% the couples I get to meet! I get to work with such amazing people and not only get to know them like friends but also get to share one of the biggest days of their lives with them as intimately as their closest family and friends do. It’s such an privileged to be picked by couples to go through that experience with them.

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: Felicity Westmacott Bespoke Bridal

    Felicity Westmacott portrait

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF

    I’m Felicity, I make unique, bespoke wedding dresses for brides who want something they can’t find anywhere else. I work from my home studio in Redhill, Surrey, which is frankly busting at the seams after 15 years of me making dresses but I love my little space and sharing it with clients who visit. I’m pushing 40 now but with my badger stripes (grey hairs) comes the experience only gained through time and seeing many many brides, body shapes and trends come and go.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS?

    My parents were both self-employed, the idea of having a ‘proper job (as others might see it) was just never on the cards. I worked as the alteration seamstress for a local Bridal shop to help pay my way through university. I told them when I started I’d be too nervous to ever try making a dress but after 4 years turning 150 dresses a year inside out I had gained enough knowledge and confidence to accept my first commissions!

    My university course was a degree in costume design which gave me the perfect grounding in designing for the ‘character’ – not to please myself. I love that every bride I meet is unique and that every dress is unlike any I’ve made before. I want to show her uniqueness in my design and make her feel fabulous.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE?

    Up, kids breakfast (three of them!) and school runs: only then I can open the door to my sanctuary of a sewing room. I usually answer emails and check social media first in case anything imperative needs answering but then try to leave the screens alone as much as I can. I like to listen to music or radio 4 while I work. This might be pattern drafting, cutting out, machine or hand sewing. Some days it’s just me alone all day and I really crack on with the task in hand, other days I might have two, three or even four client visits for fittings or consultations. I’m an introvert so I relish my time alone in the studio but even introverts need some social time so having the clients visit is lovely too! I finish the day around 5pm if I’m working to good time but I often see clients in the evening and at weekends too.

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?

    Seeing a happy bride in her dress at the final fitting and knowing my work has made her feel that way! And then getting thank you letters and wedding pictures back a few months down the line. A wedding day is a work of art, a participatory piece of performance art where the couple direct many suppliers to orchestrate a day that speaks something about themselves and their hopes for the future. I really get a buzz from seeing my designs and handiwork being a part of the whole!

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: ROSS WILLSHER PHOTOGRAPHY

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF

    I’m Ross and in no particular order, I’m a professional wedding and portrait photographer, published author, obsessive ‘Great British Bake Off’ viewer and reluctant runner.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS?

    I’d love to tell you that at the age of six, my grandfather gifted me an antique camera and I spent the rest of my childhood in the dark room following an early calling to the magical art of photography. However, the truth is that I didn’t really pick up a camera until my late twenties, but when I did, boy did it change my life. Not only did it provide me with a creative outlet and the opportunity to launch my own business, it provided me with a tool to empower others to feel amazing about who they are.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE?

    Normally, no two days are the same and are filled with meeting new couples (one of my favourite aspects of the job), shooting pre-wedding shoots, shooting weddings, editing, networking with other wedding suppliers, eating biscuits, and dancing around my office in between boring admin tasks!

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?

    Making people realise how wonderful and how photogenic they are. I never over-pose or over-edit my couples as I strongly believe everyone deserves to be celebrated for being the uniquely awesome person that they are. 

    When I witness couples fill up with emotion on seeing their wedding photos, and realising how fabulous they look, it makes all my hard work worthwhile.

  • SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT: JOHN WOODWARD PHOTOGRAPHY

    PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF 

    Hey, I’m John, another blummin’ wedding photographer who lives just outside Ely with my wife, two utterly mad but adorable kids and a hamster called Murfuls (the kids named him, not me). If I am not taking pictures, I am looking after the kids, watching YT videos about hi-fi, listening to music and being a general all round geek. I am a big Aston Villa fan, I am starting to become more and more ashamed of my guilty pleasure for my love of cars and I was a former scientist for 19 years working in genetics. It’s been an interesting time so far, but I love my life and I ADORE my job.

    WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS? 

    Ha! A question that has been asked me many times due to the fact that I had a good career and worked for a world famous academic institution that worked on one of the biggest scientific endeavours of the 20th and 21st century, the Human Genome Project. The true answer is that….I think I was done. I loved science, it’s all I knew from school and college and I still DO love science (back to being that geek again). But after 19 years, I didn’t want to DO science anymore. I needed a change. And I had already been paid for a few jobs and people liked my work and I can’t tell you how much I like taking photos, so it was my one chance to make a living out of something I truly loved doing, so I took it back in 2015….and here I am! Best decision of my life.

    HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE? 

    Well, recently, it’s been “interesting”. Covid has stopped me working almost completely and as my wife has been able to work full time from home, I have been home schooling my 9 and 7 year old all through the pandemic. But when we aren’t blighted by a virus, my day would be to get up, take the kids to school, come back and sit at the computer and do admin, marketing, social media posts….all the “downside” stuff of working for yourself and trying to promote yourself. The rest of the day would be filled with editing, replying to emails, couples, clients and then back to being Dad at the end of the school day. I try and pop a bit of exercise in there (I have a rowing machine…..works wonders) if not every day, every other day at least. 

    If it’s a wedding day, then prep everything the day before…clean cameras and lenses, charge batteries, format memory cards, make sure I have addresses, phone numbers, money, bags packed and so on. On the day, turn up for bridal prep no later than 2 hours before the ceremony and then let the day flow….blend in, be part of the action, capture all the fun, smiles, laughing, love and silly faces throughout the day.

    WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB? 

    Meeting people. Simple as that. I’m a sociable sort, so for me I love nothing better than meeting new people of all kinds. I love the diversity that humans have. I am curious, so I love finding out about people, their back stories, what makes them them. And when you are planning a wedding, getting to know someone is paramount as when you are with someone pretty much the whole day and apart from friends and family you will be the ONLY one who is there the whole day, I want to know my couples are comfortable with me and I know them well enough to know how to react and how they will react. It makes for much, much more realistic, natural photos and it means I can usually get shots that wouldn’t normally be seen. One of the things that lockdown has really highlighted to me is that I miss people. I used to think I was happy in my own space, but having the chance to go meet someone on a whim, to not be able to work and meet new people, that has been tough. So for me, absolutely the best part of my job is meeting new people, getting to know them and because of this, creating AWESOME photos for them because the couple are comfortable and happy with me around.