Kensington Palace welcomes guests to Historic Royal Palaces’ annual Wedding Showcase

Kensington Palace Historic Royal Palaces’ annual Wedding Showcase

Kensington Palace, one of six palaces cared for by independent charity Historic Royal Palaces, welcomed 120 high profile wedding planners, press and bloggers to the charity’s annual cross-palace wedding showcase on Wednesday 21 November. 

The evening began with a Cattier champagne reception in the King’s Drawing Room, part of the State Apartments which were recently licensed to host civil ceremonies for the very first time. Decorated with floral plinths by Hayford & Rhodes, guests took in their surroundings whilst enjoying drinks and canapes served by Blue Strawberry, including prosciutto cannelloni with crispy ham, mushroom and truffle & pea mousse and roasted pumpkin & mandarin ice-cream lollipop. 

Unique Treats to say Thank You to your Wedding Guests

Unique Treats for wedding guests

MY BAKER, the cake concierge has come up with a unique and fun way to say thank you to guests for attending your wedding & being part of your big day. 

A bride is always on the lookout for the unusual and unique to add that special “wow” touch to herday. Brides like to hear a compliment or chatter of appreciation from their guests.  Having spent a year preparing for your wedding, it’s the small things that you will remember and the finishing touches that really make it. 

Celebrating in style at Crabwall Manor - review

Crabwall Manor

Vows & Venues' managing editor Emma Hatherall took a trip to historic Chester for a relaxing spa weekend in a romantic setting. Read her review here…

Crabwall Manor is located a short taxi ride from the historic city of Chester and has a lot to offer whether you're looking for a wedding venue, a hen do or even just a chilled out spa weekend. Set in Mollington, it’s a stone's throw from all that Chester has to offer – the shopping, the horse racing, the history – Crabwall Manor still has that lovely country house feel to it. I took my Mum for an overnight spa break and we loved it

Winter Weddings

Winter Weddings at Museum Of London

After a long hot summer in the capital, the big freeze is finally upon us. While some may complain about the start of the cold season, we see it as a fantastic reason to celebrate the season and create a wedding winter wonderland! 

Winter weddings should channel all the best parts of the season; from log fires and crisp white snow, to cosy colours and comfort food. To help couples make the most of the winter months, we’ve put together a list of a few things to consider including in your big day celebrations.

Colours that compliment and contrast

When it comes to winter, silvers and golds work really well and can add a subtle touch of elegance. Compliment this with a few dashes of greenery to really bring the sparkle to life.

Why a blank canvas venue is ideal for creative couples

Blank canvas venue with a view of london

Every soon to be wed couple will have a vision in their minds of what they expect their big day to be like. Whether it’s an intimate family celebration, or a lavish soiree with hundreds of guests, its important to go with what works for you as a couple. While there are always small touches which you can use to personalise your big day, nothing works better for creative couples, than a blank canvas venue.

Top Ten Tips to De-stress Your Wedding

Couple De-stress For Their Wedding

Nobody wants to be a bridezilla, or a groomzilla, yet so often, the mammoth task of organising the perfect wedding day can get the better of even the most cool-headed couple. 

Perhaps it’s the event being called ‘the big day’, the knowledge that all eyes will be on you, or the idea of your in-laws dissecting each aspect of your hospitality that makes you want to hide under the duvet/elope/eat a tub of ice cream (delete as appropriate!). 

The tips below, compiled by wedding venue Newbury Racecourse, will help de-stress in the run up to the big day, making the countdown till you cut the cake, a piece of cake!


Luxury County Durham hotel showcases quirky wedding ideas for 2019

Couple on tractor outside of County Durham hotel

A luxury 17th-century country house and spa is highlighting new ways for newlyweds to celebrate their special day in 2019. Nestled in the heart of the Durham Dales, the 4-star Headlam Hall offers the perfect and most romantic destination for engaged couples to tie the knot.

However, in addition to offering rural and magical weddings amidst the picturesque backdrop of Teesdale, the hotel also prides itself on being different to other wedding venues in the North East.

Couples are being encouraged to try something a little different on their big day by making the most of the amazing countryside setting. 

Ibiza named most Instagrammable hen party destination

Girls jumping in ocean in Ibiza

Party paradise island Ibiza has one more reason to celebrate – it’s just been named as the most Instagrammable destination for hens.

The sun-soaked resort is famous for world class nightlife and big-name DJs, but its stunning scenery also makes it a massive hit on social media for brides-to-be.

The results are part of new research which reveals Ibiza as the location with the most hen-related hashtags on Insta.

The Balaeric island came out on top with 6,431 hen-related hashtags, followed by the less exotic, but always exciting London on 2,623, while Bali, in Indonesia, was rated third with 1,961 hashtags.

The analysis was conducted by hen and stag party experts Red7 who report a rise in hen party bookings for warmer climes each winter.

2019 Confetti Trends

Shropshire Petals Confetti

2018 has been a year for stylish wedding trends and colour, which is why we are certainly looking forward to 2019. With not one but two stunning royal weddings, 2019 wedding trends will be taking inspiration from both. Following in Eugenie and Jack’s footsteps, many 2019 couples will be opting for more eco-friendly weddings in a variety of ways, especially when it comes to confetti. Natural petal confetti specialists, Shropshire Petals share their top choices for confetti in line with some of the hottest predicted trends for 2019.

Kirkley Hall wedding day winners are floating on cloud nine

Kirkley Hall wedding day winners

A Gateshead couple are on cloud nine after winning a competition of a lifetime, where the stunning star prize was an exclusive all-expenses paid wedding day at Kirkley Hall near Ponteland in Northumberland.

The lucky names of Chris Laws and Gemma Wilson were drawn from a hat during a special ceremony hosted at the rural 17th-century Grade II building. 

Chris, aged 32, works as a courier and Gemma, aged 30, is a stay at home mum. They unknowingly grew up together and attended the same secondary school.  Their relationship has blossomed over the past eight years ever since they got chatting over a drink in a local pub.  Chris popped the question last Christmas by jokingly going down on one knee and proposing using a Haribo wedding ring.

Why opt for a vegan wedding?

Vegan wedding desserts

As World Vegan Month draws to a close, Vows &Venues find out more about vegan wedding options with the team at Best Western Plus Mosborough Hall, the luxury Sheffield wedding venue.

Catering at a wedding and ensuring that the wedding party and guests are 100% happy with the food choices is one of the most difficult parts of a wedding.  Ask any wedding couple and they will invariably say that choosing a food menu that suits everyone is one of the most difficult parts of the day.  That’s why we’ve seen lots of couples requesting a vegan menu in the past 12 months, and it seems this this a trend that’s here to stay.

Why not hold a quintessential afternoon tea at your vegan wedding?

Afternoon tea at a vegan wedding

During World Vegan Month, we take a look at vegan wedding trends with Whirlowbrook Hall, a premier wedding venue in South Yourkshire…

What’s not to love about the quintessential British tradition of afternoon tea? Combine that with a vegan wedding and you’ve got the wedding breakfast of dreams.  As more and more couples are looking for something a little bit different for their wedding catering an afternoon tea inspired menu fits the bill perfectly. Add to that a choice of vegan only sandwiches and cakes then you’ve really got a beautiful wedding that suits all tastes and food preferences.

Penshurst Place scoops top wedding venue award – for the third time!

 Penshurst Place - The Italian Garden © Nick Parker

Penshurst Place and Gardens has been named Wedding Venue of the Year 2019 by the Kent Wedding Awards, scooping the prestigious award for the third time.

Set in the beautiful Weald of Kent, Penshurst Place is a stunning 14th-century country house, surrounded by 11 acres of historic gardens. Judges described it as a quintessentially English venue, brimming with romance, elegance and style. They were particularly impressed with the splendid choice of banqueting rooms, each offering its own unique perspective.

The winners were announced at the Kent Wedding Awards ceremony on Thursday 15th November.

How to deliver quirky dining

Quirky dining

When putting on a wedding breakfast, the layout and décor must be every bit as memorable as the food itself. From taking things al fresco to getting imaginative with table shapes and layouts, there are plenty of options to wow your guests aside from just the menu. 

Our variety of historic spaces (including the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace and Banqueting House) leave plenty of scope for creative concepts, and our teams are well-versed in delivering wow-factor receptions guaranteed to stand out in guests’ memories. So whether you’re planning for a heritage space or pared-back blank canvas setting, here are our top tips to help you deliver awe-inspiring, quirky dining…

Take things outside 

Geeky wedding cakes from Debbie Gillespie Cake Design

Geeky wedding cake from Debbie Gillespie Cake Design

Debbie Gillespie Cake Design (formerly Farnley Fayre) was established in 2014 in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.  Comprising of just its founder, Debbie Gillespie, the company aims to provide unique and innovative wedding cake designs for creative couples.  

Inspiration for her designs are taken from her beautiful Yorkshire surroundings so woodland influences with natural textures and bold sugar florals feature heavily.   There is also a strong use of art and sculpture, using watercolour-style handpainting, modelling and different stacking techniques to build alternative design ideas. 

Wedding Day Skincare Routine Steps

Wedding Day Skincare

Joyce Connor is a make up artist,  beauty expert and owner of Joyce Connor Make Up. She has been in the cosmetics industry for 22 years and loves everything about skin!  There are so many skincare products on the market that it can be daunting which product to use first. Joyce Connor recommends using water based products on your skin first then oil based products last. Then let the final skincare product absorb into your skin before applying make up. 

Vow renewals are not just for celebrities

Vow renewals at the Chester Hotel

Jay Z and Beyonce; David and Victoria Beckham; Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne – just some of the celebrity couples who have celebrated their love by renewing their marriage vows. But if you think that having a second wedding is the realm the rich and famous, think again.

A survey* showed that almost a fifth of UK couples plan to renew the vows they made on their wedding day – or have already done so. 

Around a third of couples who plan to have the happiest day of their life again do so to coincide with a milestone anniversary, while around a quarter see it as an opportunity to have the wedding they always wanted but could not afford the first time around.

Wychwood Park Hotel & Golf Club is the perfect Cheshire venue

Wychwood Park Hotel & Golf Club is the perfect Cheshire venue

A hotel and golf club which offers choice and flexibility against a stunning countryside backdrop – what more could you want in a venue? Our editor Victoria Galligan stayed the night to experience the relaxing vibe at Wychwood Park…

Imagine getting married in lush green surroundings, with the rolling countryside peering up above the sprawling golf course in front of you and your guests as you gather in the sun on a beautiful veranda. You’d be forgiven for thinking you were in Florida at one of Tiger Woods’s old haunts – but this is the reality of a wedding at Wychwood Park Hotel & Golf Club, right here in the north west of England.  

Save £500 on your catering bill with Tapenade

Tapenade evening menu offer

Tapenade, celebration specialist caterer, is offering an extraordinary gift to couples planning to marry next year. All wedding reception bookings made before 31 December 2018 will include a complimentary evening menu for all guests. 

The offer translates to an average saving of approximately £500 based on 50 guests, allowing the happy couple to put the extra budget towards their special day. 

Engaged couples are always offered a complimentary sampling session of Tapenade’s award-winning wedding breakfast menu before committing to a booking. During the consultation, they will also be invited to trial their complimentary evening menu, a culmination of easy-to-eat favourites that offers a choice of four different cuisines.