Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Monograms Fine Papers introduces new range

It's the stationery extravaganza on the QB blog this week, and what more perfect timing could there be to announce Monograms Fine Papers' new additions to their range. These invites are pretty darn stylish and a sure fire hit for your wedding. If you want to take a closer look at Monograms' range head to their website or head into their Milton store on Park Road.

Can you believe that these invites [below] are made from 100% cotton paper?

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Get the latest issue here.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Stationery Bonanza!

We're getting very excited for the upcoming release of our Spring 2013 issue of Queensland Brides - and we hope you are too! Just because we can't help ourselves, we're going to share a little something from the new mag. And so we have an excuse to bring out this lovely collection of stationery we're going to make this week a week-long stationery fiesta! Keep your eyes peeled for more beautiful stationery.

At weddings stationery is something you may not think too hard about, but it is in fact essential. Your wedding stationery is not limited to, but usually includes the invites, save-the-dates, menus, seating charts, place cards, thank-yous, etc. Your stationery generally reflects the same theme as your wedding, including colours, patterns and general atmosphere. Seeing as your guests will see your stationery first, it's a great idea to spark a little interest in what they can look forward to see at the wedding.

On page 155 of our new issue we have a great collection of beautiful stationery that may just give you a few ideas. Look for more great stationery in the Spring 2013 issue - out August 8.

Urban Weddings
My Big Event
Urban Weddings
Elliefont Boutique Stationery
Elliefont Boutique Stationery
Elliefont Boutique Stationery
My Big Event
Monograms Fine Papers

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Get the latest issue here.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Diamond Daze: 5 Tips to help you choose your dream ring

Image from the wedding of Keith and Vanessa - Salt Studios

As one famous woman once said, "If you liked it then you should have put a ring on it." If you and your partner are looking to "put a ring on it," you have most probably begun to think of, or have perhaps entered the wonderful world of, engagement rings. Designing or choosing your dream ring can be a very daunting task for both men and women. Whether you are on a Tiffany's budget or have tight purse strings, fret not! Ensure this is the magical moment you have always hoped for by being in the know of all things ring. After all, you are going to be wearing it every day for the rest of your married life. Here are our tips to help you make your bling decision ...

1. Shop Around
Not only is your engagement ring an investment, it will also hold an incredible amount of sentimental value for you and your future husband.To ensure your total happiness with your ring, it really does pay to shop around.This way you will know exactly what you want and ultimately feel more confident in your purchase. Follow our HowTo guide to become an instant expert.

Image from the wedding of Brenton and Rachael - Focus Films

Did you know that women wear their engagement and wedding rings on the fourth finger of the left hand thanks to ancient Egyptian customs?The ancient Egyptians believed that the vena amoris (vein of love) was the only vein in the human body to run directly from the heart to the tip of this finger. Très romantic!

Image from the wedding of Kieran and Ashley - Adori Studios
2. The 4 Cs
Luckily for us, jewellers the world over have a standard, yet simple, diamond grading system commonly known as the four Cs:

1. Carat
This refers to a diamond's weight, not its size.A carat is made up of 100 points, so a 75-point diamond weighs 0.75 carats, a 50-point diamond weighs 0.50 carats, a 25-pointer weighs 0.25 carats and so on.

2. Clarity
Clarity takes into account the naturally occurring imperfections, both on the surface (blemishes) and internal flaws (inclusions), of a diamond. A diamond with fewer inclusions is more valuable. Keep in mind that every diamond is unique - and very rarely do jewellers come across a flawless stone. Most importantly, don't worry too much about these slight flaws, as they cannot be detected by the naked eye and certainly don't affect a stone's beauty!

3. Colour
Think of this as the sparkle factor - colourless diamonds are the most sought after (and expensive) as they allow the most amount of light to reflect from the stone. Diamonds are scaled according to how much they vary from the whitest colour possible. While most diamonds are a shade of white (the most expensive ones are graded according to their lack of colour) they are also available in a range of different hues deemed as ‘fancy’ colours.Think blues, reds, greens, pinks, yellows and brown.

4. Cut
While environmental factors determine a diamond's carat, clarity and colour, skilled craftsmen are responsible for giving your diamond its 'brilliance', the light that shines from the heart of the diamond, thus giving your hand serious dazzle-factor. Cut refers to a diamond's proportion, polish and symmetry and is an extremely important factor in the overall look of a stone, as a diamond's cut defines its beauty, quality and worth.
Image from the wedding of Lachlan and Natalie - Todd Hunter McGaw

3. Pedal to the Metal
Gold, silver or platinum?
The most important rule when designing or buying your engagement ring is to choose a metal that best complements your skin tone and the colour of your stone. Not sure where to begin? Depending on your budget, there is an extensive range of metals to choose from.

Rapidly becoming the metal of choice for wedding and engagement rings, platinum will beautifully complement your diamond thanks to its polished satin-like finish. Exquisite and incredibly durable, platinum is the strongest precious metal, with a guarantee to last a lifetime. Composed of 95% platinum and 5% other alloys, platinum is hypo-allergenic, making it an excellent choice for those with sensitive skin and other allergies!

10 Karat Gold:
Considered as a low- end alloy at less than 42% pure old, 10 karat gold is not recommended for wedding and engagement bands, as it lacks the shine factor that any diamond deserves!

14 Karat Yellow or White Gold:
Traditionally the most popular choice of metal for wedding and engagement bands. An alloy made up of 58.5% pure gold and 41.5% other metals results in a stronger ring to support your fancy rock. Ideal for those who work with their hands, 14 karat gold is resistant to rust and tarnishing and is, quite importantly, easy to repair and polish. More affordable than 18 karat gold, it is great value for money!

18 Karat Gold:
Rich in colour, 18 karat gold consists of 75% pure gold and 25% alloys, making it a softer and more malleable metal than 14 karat gold. Keep this in mind when wearing to avoid tiny scratches occurring.

24 Karat Gold:
100% pure gold with a deep and rich colour, 24 karat gold is too soft to be used in rings.

Perfect for the budget-conscious, silver is a very soft and malleable white metal. Because of this, silver is great if you are after an intricately designed wedding or engagement band. However, silver is likely to tarnish and discolour, so consider buying a silver band initially and upgrade to a different metal in the future if you are on a tight budget now.

A lustrous silver white metal, palladium is less expensive than platinum because of its lower density. Perfect for those with sensitive skin, palladium won't tarnish and is scratch resistant. Plus, because of its naturally-white hue, palladium doesn't require ongoing maintenance to ensure it remains fabulous for life!

Image from the wedding of Aiden and Carleen - Emma Naylor Photography

Trending around the globe at the moment is the movement to put a stop to the dangerous, and sometimes deadly diamond trade. By taking precautions to ensure your engagement ring is sourced from a conflict-free zone, ask your jeweller or retailer where their diamonds originate from. Purchasing an engagement or wedding ring diamond should not support child and unpaid labour, violence, unsafe working conditions, cause harm to the environment, and most importantly, should not have financed a civil war. Keep these things in mind when searching for your future finger bling!

Wedding of Sam and Jessica - Nick Murray Photography

4. Kaleidoscopic HuesIf diamonds are not really your thing, or aren't within your budget, why not look to include fun and fashionable coloured jewels or gemstones. Not only are they popping with colour, some also believe gemstones contain healing qualities.

Image from the wedding of Liam and Stacey - Sterling Studios
Engrave an extra meaningful phrase onto the inside of your ring or get your husband-to-be to surprise you with one he has thought of himself.

Image from the wedding of Linda and Jeremy - Emma Attard Photography
5. Set the Scene
More and more women are choosing to have their engagement rings set in unique ways to really make their, and their husband-to-be's, mark on this special ring.The list of options for having your ring set really is as long as your imagination, so be as creative as you want! Still stuck? A great way to begin is to consider your most treasured photograph. How would you choose to frame this in your home? Choosing a setting for your engagement ring requires the same process, so make sure you have the right set to suit your style and taste.

Wedding of Natasha and Roman - Photography by Kieron
Before you buy ‘the ring’ make sure you:
1. Know the ins and outs of the ‘four cs’ before purchasing.
2. Research, research, research! Know the market price and set a budget prior to buying.
3. Diamonds last forever so buy the best-quality diamond you can afford.
4. Ask your friends and family for a referral and of course, only deal with reputable jewellers.
5. Always obtain a written guarantee or certificate detailing the value of the stone.
6. Keep your insurance up to date, especially as soon as you buy your ring.

Words: Rachel Wood

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Get the latest issue here.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wedding theme alert! "Soft and Sumptuous"

A cool palette, luscious florals and glass accents make a sophisticated statement of luxury in this creative shoot by Styled Events and Invitation Station. Set at Brisbane's Customs House, the ceremony area's clean and uncluttered look allowed the building's beautiful structure to shine, whilst the interior's indulgent theming set the scene for a wedding of style, elegance and plenty of decadence.

Cara from Invitation Station teamed pale pink and beige tones with a custom-designed pattern to enhance the soft and subtle detailing of the table setting. Simple double-layered place cards were a practical, sophisticated option which gently support the theming without drawing attention away from the prominent floral display.

Green and bronze hydrangea, as well as the trendy 'popcorn' hydrangea variety sit alongside pink roses, disbud chrysies and sedum.The luxe flower garland, which stretches over seven metres, is sure to be a huge floral trend for 2013, the lavish display an absolute stand out which suits a variety of wedding styles.

Styled Events and Invitation Station 
Invitation Station
Always Fabulous Flowers
Kwintowski Photography

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Get the latest issue here.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Bouquet Breakdown: Personalising your bouquet to reflect you

Wedding of Sam and Jessica - Nick Murray Photography

Originating in ancient times, the bridal bouquet has become an integral element of the modern wedding. Symbolic of happiness and fertility, it goes without saying that wedding bouquets have remained an important tradition for a worthy reason! So, before selecting your arrangement, make sure you've read our comprehensive 'Bouquet Breakdown', an outline of bouquet styles and how to make them work for you.

As with most bridal accessories, wedding day flowers follow the troughs and peaks of fashion. Brides can draw inspiration from current trends, the season, or their wedding's overall aesthetic. However, subsequent to the crucial selection of the flower, comes the decision of how to present your bouquet. 

At a time where 'anything goes', brides are free to choose arrangements that best reflect them, rather than being concerned with tradition or formalities.That said, the following are some handy hints and tips to help you out when it comes to organising your perfect wedding day bouquet alongside your chosen florist.

Wedding of Josh and Aimee - Kye Norton Photography

Flower Preference
Whether evoking pleasant memories of your childhood, or that romantic first date with your loved one, most of us have a favourite flower. However, it is also quite common for brides to coordinate bouquets around the various other wedding day features, such as the theme and/or colour scheme, decor, or bridesmaids' dresses. 

Either way, the flowers selected by the bride can represent a deeper, more personal meaning or they can simply be chosen for their aesthetics. In the celebrity world, it appears that certain flowers are favoured more than others when it comes time to tie the knot. For instance, the seemingly modest lily-of-the-valley proves to be an extremely popular selection for Hollywood brides. The lovely Grace Kelly held a small bouquet of lily-of-the-valley as she walked down the aisle, as did Elizabeth Hurley on her wedding day. Most recently, we saw the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, complemented her vintage-style wedding dress with a petite bouquet of these gorgeous flowers. 

Wanting to add a little more meaning to your bouquet? Why not incorporate flowers symbolic of everlasting love or fidelity, such as baby's breath or ivy? 

The Arrangement
Quite simply, a bride's selection of bouquet can say a lot about the individual, her style and what she sees as important. However, before deciding on your arrangement, don't forget to consider three important points: your height and figure, the shape of your wedding dress and the overall theme of your wedding.The following is our breakdown of the various arrangement styles and how they tie in with these considerations.

Cascade Bouquet - John Downs Photography

Often used in formal or traditional celebrations, this full-bodied, sophisticated 'cascade' or 'teardrop' bouquet can be a striking feature as part of a wedding ensemble. 

Emerging as a popular choice of bouquet in the 1920s and 1930s, the cascading structure consists of flowers that descend in a waterfall-like fashion below the main portion of the bouquet's design. It should be noted, however, that the teardrop's composition is a lot more structured, with its base coming to a more definite end point, as opposed to the cascade's composition which is more free-form. Along with its elegant structure, this style of bouquet is also very slimming! 

Despite Princess Diana's already slim figure, she selected a multi-trail 'shower' bouquet composed of gardenias, lily-of-the-valley, roses, orchids, freesia (and more!) for her wedding day, considered nowadays as a formal wedding benchmark. Brides who are short in stature should avoid this style, as the bouquet's size and shape may be overwhelming. Rather, opt for a less extravagant arrangement, such as a hand-tied round bouquet.

If you’re thinking of selecting this traditional style of bouquet for your wedding, why not incorporate fragrant stephanotis? Symbolic of marital happiness, these flowers were very popular back in the day! 

Wedding of Mark and Michelle - Oliver Kuo Photography and Cinematography

Round Bouquet 
Currently one of the more popular options for modern- day weddings, the round bouquet varies in style, namely the 'posy' and 'nosegay'.

In regards to composition, nosegay arrangements are usually comprised of round shaped flowers similar in size – the term basically refers to a compact, rounded bunch. This arrangement is extremely versatile, suiting both a formal occasion or a more relaxed wedding ceremony. 

Essentially, the round bouquet should be presented in one of three ways: 'hand tied', describing a relaxed bunch formation which reveals the natural growth of the flower's stems; 'fully-wired', where the natural stems ofthe flowers are removed and replaced with florists wire before being assembled into a lighter, more manageable posy; and 'wrapped', which is a mix of the two styles whereby the natural stems are carefully wrapped in an elegant ribbon or fabric.

For brides wanting a smaller more intimate look, wrapped bouquets are a perfect accompaniment.The design gives the opportunity to incorporate a variety of blooms, colours and textures, as well as a precious family heirloom which can be secured to the ribbon base.

The round bouquet is both pretty and portable. However, ladies who are fuller-figured should probably steer clear of these arrangements as they are known to emphasis larger, more rounded hips. 

Fully-wired round bouquet - Studio Impressions Photography

Arm Bouquet/Arm Spray/Arm Sheath 
Traditionally referred to as the 'Bernhardt' bouquet after the actress Sarah Bernhardt, the 'arm bouquet' is also known as the 'presentation' or 'pageant' bouquet – think beauty pageants. Long-stemmed roses, orchids and calla lilies are all perfect for this style. 

Usually gathered and tied with ribbon, these stunning flowers are often left in their natural condition.The correct technique in presenting this type of arrangement is to support them on the inner crook of your arm, at waist height.This design is perfect if you plan to wear a strapless dress on your wedding day, as it won't compete with the dress details, instead flattering your décolletage.

As this style of bouquet is more extravagant than most, it requires more effort from the bride to carry it.You should therefore consider asking a bridesmaid to assist you on the day by carrying your bouquet when necessary. 

A strictly formal arrangement of concentric circles using coloured flowers, with each ring accommodating one type of flower, the 'Biedermeier' bouquet encompasses several stylistic features similar to the design of a classic 'round' bouquet. Interestingly, these geometric bouquets often incorporated citrus peels for additional colour and fragrance.

Hand-tied round bouquet - Jess Marks Photography

Contemporary bouquets are generally non-geometric, often involving tropical flowers, foliage and structural additions such as bamboo. Flowers such as calla lilies, anthuriums and orchids are also often seen to bring life and bold shapes to such bouquets – ideal for those looking for something a little bit unusual.

Wristlet/Single Stem/Floral Boa 
For brides looking for something a little less grandiose, a single stem would be a simple, suitable alternative. If you are wanting to avoid carrying a bouquet altogether, why not opt for a wrist corsage or 'wristlet' of smaller blooms? Flowers perfect for corsages include frangipanis, roses and carnations. An additional option that is hands-free is the 'floral boa'. This style is worn around the bride's shoulders and is comprised of a length of wired flowers and greenery. 

Accessorised bouquet - Studio Impressions Photography

When it comes to personalising your bridal bouquet, the options are endless. However, a common trend for modern-day brides is to incorporate a little bling into their arrangements. Intertwining crystals and beads into your bouquet, as well as ribbons or even sentimental fabric, are among some of the more popular options for accessorising. Also playing a significant role in a bride's ensemble is religion. For instance, the lovely Grace Kelly held a bouquet alongside a small, white prayer book on her wedding day and well-known singer Christina Aguilera preferred a diamond rosary.

Keep in mind, 
your photos will last an eternity, even though your flowers will not. So stay true to yourself and your personal style – you'll thank yourself for it in the long run.

Words: Ellie Yates

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Get the latest issue here.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Love At O'Reilly's

Wedding of Paul and Elisa at O'Reilly's - Chesterton Smith Photography
O'Reilly's is known for its stunning rainforest location in the hinterland of the Gold Coast, but they are also known as a prime location for love. Weddings, honeymoons and couples retreats find O'Reilly's a great spot, the scenic spot a definite draw.

Jill Walker, O'Reilly's freshly appointed wedding coordinator, is no stranger to the love-filled air at O'Reilly's. Jill met her 'one', O'Reilly's Activities Guide Matthew Kelly on the job!

At QB we are hopeless for a good love story, and Matt and Jill are the sweetest.

Jill describes the first time Matt spoke to her, "It was so cute! Matt walked up to the reception desk where I was working and said 'I'm Matt. I like snakes.' There was definitely something about him."

Matt and Jill

If you want to test out the air at O'Reilly's head to for a look.

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Get the latest issue here.

Friday, July 19, 2013

We Heart the Groom

Happy Dappy Friday everybody! We're bringing this week's groom theme to a close, but before we do, we wanted to share all of the lovely images we received from YOU when we asked:

Here are our lovely submissions:

"This is my gorgeous husband Chris on our wedding day in April this year. He looks super spunky!!" - Alex

This is Tiffany and her happy groom, Ben. Photographed by Gary Howard

"My groom being silly and being handsome." - Caroline

"My beautiful husband Joshua, who couldn't hold his tears back during our ceremony, on the 29 June 2013. We got married on the family block and it was the perfect setting to our rustic wedding." - Rachelle

"This is my brother Scott at his wedding at Sirromet Winery to Jay-Lee. He was brimming with happiness all day, it was such a pleasure to behold. I couldn't decide which was my favourite! The first shot is at the ceremony waiting for the bride to arrive, the second is at the reception listening to the best man's speech and the third is up on the d-floor dancing with our mother." - Erin

"My handsome groom Nathan Turner awaiting his bride (me) to arrive at our fairytale wedding in Paronella Park 6th June 2012." - Kimberly

"This is a photo that melted my heart of my husband and his best man. My husband was very calm (apparently!), the bridesmaids walked down the aisle, the doors to the chapel closed so I could get in place and thats when this photo was taken! My husband isn't looking so calm now! Such a beautiful moment where words didn't have to be spoken, but the look from both of them says a thousand words! His best man and best mate had a fight with cancer as well so this photo means so much to us both." - Kylie

Thanks for sending in your pics ladies!
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