Thursday, October 31, 2013

Sweet Heart: Final Flourishes

Christopher Thomas Photography

The final part of our Sweet Heart feature. If you missed the other parts, look for the "Sweet Heart" tag and find the rest.

Final Flourishes
Non-edible details are just as important, creating a spectacular final effect.

Miniature handcrafted sugar roses are a favourite for Mimi from Classic Cakes as well as "full blown fresh soft pink and ivory roses, diamantés and embossing."

Fresh blooms are a beautiful finishing touch for your wedding confection, and Judy from Cakes by Judy C offers couples the best of both worlds. "I love using fresh flowers as I have a certificate in floristry as well and there are some great fresh flower designs out there," she says. "I also love ribbons; they are like the final touches to finish off the base of the cake."

Julie Whitehead also loves using flowers. "Sometimes I have brides that want to replicate their bouquets on the cake so I usually do a textured icing look in conjunction with an assortment of the flowers they are using.”

Cakey Creations

Going traditional? For the right cake, a "beautiful bride and groom ornament" is still in favour says Mimi from Classic Cakes.

You don't have to stay serious when it comes to choosing a cake topper.We love the quirky, personal choices many of our Queensland brides have been making with everything from handmade birds and lego figurines to cute caricatures taking pride of place.Want to go glam? Choose a sophisticated black or crystal monogram.

"There are some great monogram cake toppers these days," says Judy from Cakes by Judy C who adds "quality is important when doing toppers ... and there is great variance in price." Judy suggests shopping online to find the perfect piece if you're not having your topper custom made. 

Porfyri Photography

"Ribbon is very popular to incorporate the colour theme onto the cake," says Leanne from Cakey Creations. "Bling in the form of ribbon, brooches or toppers is also very popular, and the ceramic bride and groom."

Renee from Brown Betty's Bakery loves "handmade bunting, or fresh flowers," as a pretty final flourish and Sherie from The Flour Girl agrees."I love bunting on a cake and sweet colourful paper pinwheels," Sheree says. "The great thing about this is that brides can inject some personal elements into their own cake by making their own bunting or pinwheels out of beautiful fabrics and papers." 

The Flour Girl

A glittering detail is a glamorous addition to any wedding cake. "My non-edible favourite cake detail would hands down be any Swarovski crystal accent," says Vas from Frosted Indulgence. "This can be in the form of monogram toppers, individual crystals on the cake tiers or handmade brooch-like adornments which I especially use as the centres on my icing ribbon bows."

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

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Cracking the Dress Code

Don't leave your guests worrying about their wedding ensemble - include a dress code on your invitation for a clear clothing direction.

Often what concerns wedding guests the most in the lead up to the big day is not transport, gifts or seating arrangements, but simply what they are going to wear.The absence of a dress code on your invite can have guests in a whirl of worry, fumbling over their cocktail dresses and bow ties without a clear direction. Cut the confusion and select one of our popular or styled dress codes to include on your invitation - we're sure your guests will thank you for it.

Our top three popular dress codes:

Wedding of Rohan and Danielle | Andrew Rankin Photography

1. Black tie
Black tie is the ideal dress code for formal occasions set in luxurious surroundings. Men are expected to wear black or white dinner jackets or tuxedos, bow ties, suspenders and vests, whilst women should arrive in floor- length gowns, cocktail dresses or elegant separates which don't reveal too much skin. Black tie events are a brilliant opportunity for the ladies to pull out that special jewellery piece or to have their hair styled in a glamorous up-do - gather inspiration from red carpet events.

Styling tip
Hollywood Glamour/Red Carpet

Wedding of Ryan and Elle | Iconic Bride Photography

2. Cocktail
Lounge suits and stylish short dresses usually personify cocktail style, however, longer frocks in light and breezy fabrics are also suitable. Accessorise with strappy heels and patterned ties to add personality, and remember - colour is your friend!

Styling tip
Sunset Champagne Bar

Karen Buckle Photography
3. Smart casual 
Although ‘smart casual’ events are certainly more laid-back than their formal counterparts, there is no excuse for sloppiness. For the boys, keep things slick with blazers, cardigans and button-down shirts over a dark pair of trousers. Ladies, mid-length boldly-hued dresses, shawls and striking accessories are the perfect solution.

Styling tip
Urban Chic

No dress code 
Even if you have the best of intentions by leaving a dress code off your invitation, we can almost guarantee you will receive anxious calls from guests wondering what kind of outfits are acceptable. Prevent the confusion and last-minute worry by deciding on a dress code and sticking to it - guests will be far more relaxed if they know what is expected of them.

Black and white
There are mixed opinions on wearing black and white to weddings.The majority of people believe wearing white is a no-no, simply because it's difficult to know what the bride's stance is - probably best to avoid this one. Black on the other hand has become quite a popular colour for formal, evening events.To freshen up a black dress, tie in bright accessories and lighter fabrics which prevent a funereal look. However, leave black outfits in the closet for summery, casual or outdoor weddings. Still unsure? Simply contact the maid of honour or the bride for their opinion.

Do I need to wear stockings? 
These days, stockings are certainly not an essential when it comes to dressing for a wedding. Stockings are generally worn in the cooler months, providing an ideal option for guests looking to complete a polished winter outfit. Always remember to team with a closed-in shoe.

Our top three styled dress codes:

Wedding of Rohan and Danielle | Andrew Rankin Photography

1. High Tea Garden Party
Garden parties are often set beneath a blue sky on grass, so flats and small heels, sun hats and sunglasses are all acceptable accessories. Floral, feminine dresses or pastels are ideal for the ladies, whilst 'polo' style and lightweight suits are a great option for the lads.

Styling tip
Hamptons Elegance 

Wedding of Sudipta and Josh | Milque Photography and Films

2. Beach Resort
There should be a sense of ease when dressing for a beach or resort wedding. Jewelled sandals, embellished kaftans, leather slip-ons and linen separates are summery and comfortable, and move seamlessly from the sand

to an alternative reception venue. Keep in mind, beach ceremonies may require you to take off your shoes, so be armed with an easily-removable pair and a fresh pedi!

Styling tip
French Riviera
Wedding of Louise and John | CkMetroPhotos
3. Themes and Festive attire
Even if a themed wedding isn’t to your taste, it is absolutely paramount that you dress up accordingly. Supporting the bride and groom on their special day can mean some crafty DIY or a trip to the costume shop, either option being acceptable. Festive attire usually involves some sparkle and the traditional festive shades of red, green, white and gold - arrive decked out in the theme or simply add some blingy accessories for a subtler take.

Styling tip
Great Gatsby or New Year’s Eve

As seen in Queensland Brides Spring 2013

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

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Couture Collective #12 Karen Willis Holmes

Meet Karen Willis Holmes, Queensland wedding gown designer ...

Karen Willis Holmes
Label: Karen Willis Holmes
Bride: Venessa
Photography: Studio Impressions

Romantic details including a delicate lace cape, feminine fishtail silhouette and jewelled belt helped create a perfect match for bride Venessa in this Karen Willis Holmes gown. As a ‘couture client’ the bride-to-be was treated to a very collaborative one-on- one where Karen says “the bride can have anything she wants design wise as long as it works technically. 

After years of designing evening wear and working with designers in the UK and Australia, Karen established her brand in Sydney in 2000, launching a Demi Couture Collection in 2004, followed by a Melbourne store soon after and a Brisbane store in 2011 to the delight of local brides. Karen is currently committed to taking the label global, attending her first New York showing earlier this year and focusing on US and UK as secondary markets. 

How does this bride’s gown embody your label’s aesthetic?
Venessa’s gown is the embodiment of the brands aesthetic - it is a balanced combination of a fitted fishtail corset silhouette layered with soft and feminine fabrics such as lace and tulle. It is the brand’s ability to subtly mix these elements - those of the traditional and modern that has been its great success 

Are there any key trends which you have featured in the gown’s design?
In terms of silhouette the gown’s fishtail shape is very much on trend but also the fabric and of course the lace used is also key trend elements in bridal, not just currently but in general. 

What kind of wedding was it designed to suit?
An elegant wedding - one that was family and friends orientated, and a great celebration of Venessa and Matthew’s love.

This gown was inspired by ...
With the nature of a couture gown it is a very collaborative process so I draw a lot of inspiration from the bride. At the first meeting, the design consultation, this is my opportunity to get an understanding of the bride - who she is, her personality, her ideas and thoughts not only about the wedding gown but the wedding in general including the location and theme ... once I get an understanding of the bride I will draw on elements from my own collections and a silhouette I think will work for the bride. 

As a designer are you meticulously organised, a chaotic creative or a free-thinker?
I have to say I am a mix ... as the owner and creative director of Karen Willis Holmes  I wear many ‘hats’ so to speak. When I am designing I am a ‘chaotic creative’ and captivated in the design process. On the other hand when I am focused on the business side of the brand I take a more structured and organised approach as there is so much detail and work involved.

Your best advice to girls looking for their dream gown?
This may sound corny but is oh so true! – stay true to yourself, your personality and your tastes. This can be said for all areas of your wedding from the invitations, décor and the cake. Choose a gown that you not only love but is a perfect representation of who you are. 

Get to know Karen Willis Holmes
In person
Shop 5/2 Latrobe Terrace, Paddington QLD 4064
Phone 07 3368 2216

Over the web

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

Friday, October 25, 2013

Sweet Heart: Decadent Details

Brown Betty's Bakery

The ‘edible’ finishing touch to your cake needs to look divine and taste delicious too. Here’s what’s hot. 

"French vanilla buttercream is divine for a lovely rustic style cake" says Sherie from The Flour Girl.

"My most popular edible finish is chocolate of course," says Julie Whitehead. "I am a chocolatier so only work in chocolate. It’s the reason I fell in love with the medium to begin with ... I love chocolate and it is not only visually exciting but tastes superb. There is nothing better!" 

KCL Photography

Thinking traditional marzipan was the finish for you? Judy from Cakes by Judy C explains why this smooth white finish is more likely to be fondant or pettience. "Marzipan is rarely used these days," she says. "In the past there was a layer of marzipan on the fruit cakes followed by the smooth white icing which is often mistaken for marzipan. The smooth white icing on wedding cakes is not marzipan and is often referred to as pettience, fondant or RTR which stands for 'ready to roll'. I love using pettience as well as whipped white chocolate ganache – both of these icings are great for a beautiful cake."


Many of our experts, including Mimi from Classic Cakes, name fondant as their favourite, for its flawless finish and 'blank canvas' appeal. "My favourite and most popular cake finish is fondant icing," agrees Vas from Frosted Indulgence, noting "this gives such a clean and crisp look and provides a great base for adding the design details." These can include everything from edible pearls to stencils. Leanne from Cakey Creations says "our most popular finish on the wedding cakes is fondant, with fondant pearls, lace and flowers being very popular. Royal icing piping and stencilling is one of my favourite." 

Christopher Thomas Photography

"We like incorporating royal icing lace stencils into cake designs, teamed with sugar flowers for our traditional brides," says Renee from Brown Betty's Bakery. "Torched meringue is a favourite finish of ours, it’s beautiful and delicious!" Leanne from Cakey Creations has also noticed "custom sugar figurines/toppers are becoming quite popular."

"I'm noticing a big trend towards naked cakes lately," says Sherie from The Flour Girl. She explains this means "no icing on the outside at all, the cake is filled with scrumptious buttercream but you can still see the actual cake, loaded with berries on the edges of each tier and dusted in snow powder. It's a visually stunning centrepiece for a wedding reception!" 

Studio Impressions Photography
Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook and Twitter. Get the latest issue here.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Trendwatch: Take your hair & beauty cues from some of the season’s prettiest trends

Head piece: UK-based Flo & Percy

"Vintage inspired weddings are a major hit especially after the Great Gatsby movie. Keeping a soft eye with a bold lip in a plum or red is definitely a winner" Khesanh of the Beauty Case 

Makeup: Abigael Johnston

“Subtle highlighting and contouring the face is back in. The last thing you want is for your face to look ‘flat’ in photos.” - Abigael Johnston

Brides are wanting more defined eyes with black flick and full set of lashes with bright red lips. skin is flawless and contoured blush on the cheeks. hair is styled down with soft curls or up styled with a finger wave fringe. finish with a pearl/diamanté hair clip or floral fascinator." Giulia Ponticello 

Make-up: Abigael Johnston; Paul Giggle Photography

Opt out of flat hair colour, says Matt Clements of The Assembly Hair on the Sunshine Coast. "A big trend currently is contrasting warm and cool tones used side by side," he says, adding that "accents of muted colours such as soft powder pinks and lilacs with grey/whites is still very much an on-trend look.” Want to make it work for bridal? “Although the pastel tones may not be appropriate for a wedding day, contrasting shades to create beautiful finishes can still be done through use of chocolates and darker browns, or differing shades of blonde."'

Reichen/Hare's Hair; Photo: Ian Golding; Gown: Darb

"Braiding and beautiful high top knot buns which translate from runway red carpet to bridal masterpiece are right on trend," says Reichen of Hare's Hair 

An elegant high bun will elongate your neck and showcase cheekbones and shoulders. Add interest and texture with bridal braiding. 

KCL Photography

Want to add a little sparkle and shine? Try crystal eye details - a great way to take your wedding makeup from day to night.This is definite party eye wear! 

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

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Couture Collective #11 Theresa de Vera Lariza of Asereth Bridal

Meet Theresa de Vera Lariza, Queensland wedding gown designer ...

Label: Asereth Bridal

After launching her first ready-to-wear collection in 2011,Theresa deVera Lariza quickly realised bridal was her true passion, with Asereth Bridal debut bridal collection launched soon after. This talented young designer is committed to “bringing high fashion bridal to local brides,” with each unique gown designed, produced and finished from Theresa’s base on Brisbane’s north side. “I want to continue designing gowns that are unique and unlike traditional bridal for brides who want a gown that isn’t mass produced,” she says.“ I’m extremely passionate about what I do and love that what I’m creating will be worn for one of the most amazing and important days in a woman’s life.”

Your label in three words?
Sweet. Feminine.Timeless.

Are there any key trends which have come through in your latest collection?
Touches of gold will be featured in my next collection which was inspired by the current metallic trend seen on international runways.

As a designer are you meticulously organised, a chaotic creative or free- thinking?
A chaotic creative! It’s important to allow ideas for new designs to come to me naturally, rather than force a design onto paper and the end result is unoriginal and uninspiring. It can get dramatic in the workroom, but there’s never a dull moment at Asereth Bridal!

You are inspired by ...
Designs have come to me in dreams, from movies and current trends from around the world.Touching and looking at a variety of fabric usually inspires new designs as the movement and drape of the material can drastically alter a design.

Choose your muse (either real or fictional)
Audrey Hepburn, a humanitarian whose beauty cannot be matched.

Favourite fashion designer/s?
Valentino and Alexander McQueen

Your best advice for girls looking for their dream gown? 
Dress for your shape. It’s easy to get caught up in what’s in fashion and what everyone’s doing, but it’s important to remember to choose a gown that accentuates your assets.

What’s on your workroom playlist?
I’ve always loved Toni Braxton, Beyonce and Mariah Carey and I usually have these ladies singing while I work. Rick James and Prince are great for dropping in between pattern making and sewing! 

Get to know Asereth Bridal
In person
0404 142 539

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

Friday, October 18, 2013

A QB Top Pin - Cala lilies meet roses in this striking bouquet

Gullys Garden Wedding Florist
This image of a cala lily and rose bouquet form Gullys Garden Wedding Florist has garnered some attention on QB's Pinterest page

The soft pink, almost apricot, coloured roses are a striking but romantic match with the more modern-style lilies.

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

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Sweet Heart: Favourite Flavours

Christopher Thomas Photography

QB has a definite sweet tooth today, and we've decided to pull on of our favourite features from QB Spring 2013 to tide us over until lunch time! This feature comes in three parts, so look out for it in the coming weeks.

Favourite Flavours
We asked our experts about their favourite flavours of the moment – and what you are asking for .

Traditional fruit cake is an elegant, classic choice says Mimi from Classic Cakes, who names her other favourite as the delicious sounding "vanilla butter macadamia nut cake." 

Studio Impressions Photography

Mud cake is a wedding day winner for Leanne from Cakey Creations. "My favourite wedding cake flavours are: caramel mud and cherry ripe mud," she says. "Most popular with brides and grooms: caramel mud, white mud, chocolate mud ... and becoming popular with the coming wedding season is cherry ripe mud and toblerone mud."

Renee from Brown Betty's Bakery also has a soft spot for magnificent mud – as well as eye-catching red velvet. "Our favourite cake flavour would be white chocolate and passionfruit mud or hazelnut chocolate mud," she says. "The most popular among our brides and grooms would be cherry ripe ... a close second is red velvet." 

Porfyri Photography

Why settle for just one flavour when you and your groom can each choose a favourite. "My favourite is to have two flavours/layers of cake together such as half chocolate mud and half orange grand marnier" says Judy from Cakes by Judy C. "Brides and grooms currently like some of the marbled cakes such as white chocolate, caramel and chocolate mud cakes marbled together."

A scrummy gluten-free option and a summery treat win in the flavour stakes for Sherie of The Flour Girl. "My favourites are apple and pistachio – which happens to be gluten free, although it's so delicious I've had brides have it for their entire cake! – and also pineapple and coconut; it's such a lovely, sweet, fruity cake. Nice for a summer wedding."

Shy Fox Photography

"My absolute personal favourites are a white chocolate mud infused with a hint of rose and fresh raspberries, and gluten-free orange and almond," says Vas from Frosted Indulgence. "My most popular flavour at the moment is a light caramel mud with pure honey and freshly chopped pistachio nuts, and my choc hazelnut mud."

Although she also loves "hazelnuts with coffee, and a great lemon and almond cake," Julie Whitehead admits brides find it hard to resist her heavenly chocolate obsession. "I must admit that the most popular flavour I do 99.9% of the time is my chocolate almond truffle cake. Once my brides taste it they love it. It is made with almond meal and beautiful Swiss chocolate. It is fabulous accompanied with fresh berries or a raspberry coulis for dessert, or cut up into finger slices with tea or coffee."

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

Monday, October 14, 2013

What a HUUUGGEEE weekend! Queensland Brides Wedding Expo Wrap up!

The Queensland Brides Wedding & Honeymoon Expo took place from 11-13th of October, and wasn't it enormous! Thanks to our exhibitors for showcasing their wares, skills, and services, and also to our guests for coming out to meet some fantastic wedding vendors.

Were you one of our lucky major prize winners?

MAJOR PRIZE : Villa Botanica - WIN the 'classic experience' package worth $18, 000. Congratulations Kristy King!

MAJOR PRIZE : Holidays for Couples Magazine & Laguna Resorts & Hotels -
WIN a destination wedding package at beautiful Laguna Resorts & Hotels Phuket,Thailand valued at THB 75,000 (approx AUD $2,500). Congratulations Casie Clarke!

MAJOR PRIZE : WIN an Ornate Collection Photography Package valued at $1900 from Chantilly Lace, Stand #133 Includes two photographers with approximately Six hours coverage with proof book, slideshow of images and disc folio of 200 high and low resolution images. Congratulations Lisa Johnson!

Here are some teaser pics from the weekend, like us on facebook for more.

We're are also very excited to announce the 2013Queensland Brides Design Awards winners …

Here's the full list, watch this space as professional images of every single gown will be featured here soon!

Supreme Award:

Winner:   Gown 15  "Krischelle"
Designer:  Wendy Sullivan for Brides Desire by Wendy Sullivan    

Peoples Choice:

Winner: Gown 62   "Ophelia"     Tammie Nitschke  for Elizabeth De Varga    

Runner Up: Gown 41  "Adele"   Tammie Nitschke for Elizabeth De Varga  

Highly Commended: Gown 15  "Krischelle"   Wendy Sullivan for Brides Desire by Wendy Sullivan 


Winner:   Gown 15 "Krischelle"  Wendy Sullivan for Brides Desire by Wendy Sullivan

Runner Up: Gown 8 "Stacia"  Rayner Lee for Regalia Bridal Designs

Highly Commended:  Gown 16 "Sharna"  Ella Stephenson for Ella Moda

Bride Nouveau:

Winner: Gown 24  "La Metro"  Hester Jarvis for Ja Delle Designs

Runner Up: Gown 30 "Gabrielle"  Jack Sullivan for Jack Sullivan Bridal

Highly Commended:  Gown 34 "Elissa"  Rayner Lee for Regalia Bridal Designs


Winner: Gown 39 "Madame De Winter"  Hester Jarvis for Ja Delle Designs

Runner Up: Gown 43 "Odile" Rebecca Cobbing for Rebecca Cobbing Couture

Highly Commended: "Harriet" Anna Dutton for Anna Dutton Couture


Winner: Gown 63 "Carlina"  Wendy Makin for Wendy Makin Couture

Runner Up: Gown 62 "Ophelia" Tammie Nitschke for Elizabeth De Varga Exclusive Fashions

Highly Commended:  Gown 57  "Billowing Snow"  George Wu for George Wu 

We might still be yawning from our big weekend, but we're happily reliving it through our Instagram feed. Here's some of our fave snaps…

The next expo is held on the 4th, 5th & 6th of April 2014. Sign up to our eNewsletter to stay in the loop >

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

The Couture Collective #10 - Winnie Yeung of Winnie Bridal

Meet Winnie Yeung, Queensland wedding gown designer ...

Winnie Yeung
Label: Winnie Bridal

Trained in France and describing herself as "a Dior girl" when it comes to her favourite designer,WinnieYeung's passion and 35 years haute couture experience is evident in her designs. "I made my first dress when I was twelve years old, so I have always loved designing and creating dresses," she says. " I work seven days a week, so my business and what I do is a true passion for me, it comes from the heart. I really try to look after our brides - even if they need a dress change which may seem insignificant but actually involves a lot of work for me, I will always do it for them. I have a commitment to service and producing perfect dresses." 

Your label in three words?
Unique. Quality. Exquisite.

Are there any key trends which have come through in your latest collection? 
Grey gowns, traditional styles from the archives, and just a continuation of our quality work. We are definitely referencing some of the bridal styles of the past which are making a big comeback in the bridal fashion industry and we are noticing a market for gowns which are different to the classic white - we will be seeing some grey gowns in the coming seasons. 

Describe yourself as a designer? 
A true dressmaker. I'm involved in every process, from drawing up patterns for the fabric manufacturers to creating the beading designs, so I'm extremely hands on from the beginning. I aim to maintain the highest standard of quality throughout every process - it does take a lot of extra effort, time and money to ensure the dress is of the upmost quality in every aspect, but I refuse to accept the cheaper, mass-produced options. At Winnie we are all about quality. 

Get to know Winnie Bridal
In person 
Shop G31, Wintergarden, 
171 Queen Street Mall, 
Brisbane QLD 4000
07 3229 2000

Over the web

Check out Queensland Brides at, Facebook and Twitter. Get the latest issue here.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...