Gate Street Barn – A Luxury Barn Wedding Venue in Surrey…

Gate Street Barn, nestled just outside of Guildford in a little village called Bramley, is nothing short of perfection. As a venue it has everything and as a team, they have everything covered to make your day unforgettable.

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

The main barn where you can have your civil ceremony and it’s quite frankly exquisite. A truly magnificent barn that is perfect for couples looking for a little rustic glamour. There is a glass conservatory that has been lovingly added to the main barn, leading out to a courtyard area which is truly quaint. There are other buildings dotted around the courtyard including the main office space that is so in-keeping with the style of the property, you would think it was a little annex. There is also a wonderful cottage where guests can stay overnight to extend the celebrations. It is utterly charming and has a very traditional style.   

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Back to the main barn….

The vast size of the barn allows for a really fluid and private celebration. When you hire Gate Street Barn, you take the whole property. This means no restaurant, no public bars and no hotel rooms. It is an exclusive hire making the celebrations all the more intimate and personal. When it’s time for a drink post-ceremony, guests move through to the beautiful bar area, clad with luxury wood and a light and bright conservatory space that joins the bar and main room. This is a gorgeous place to relax and admire the rolling fields behind the property.

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Time for dinner…

Head back to the main barn where as if by magic, your tables are dressed for dinner. Gate Street Barn has several options for catering and you will not be disappointed with any of them. From Kalm Kitchen to Just Jane, Tandem to Rhubarb, the team at Gate Street have picked some of Surrey’s finest catering companies to cater for their guests’ culinary whims.

Party time…

Drinks are flowing, celebrations are in full swing and It’s definitely time to put on your dancing shoes and take to the floor for some epic moves and photos! As the barn is an exclusive hire, your guests are free to mingle, relax in a quiet corner or chat by the bar in total privacy. The only thing left to do is grab a glass of wine and something to eat from the evening snack bar.

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

Photo by Fresh Shoots Studios

We are so proud to be one of only two recommended bridal boutiques for Gate Street Barn and offer fun and unique appointments for our brides in a relaxed and no-pressure environment. We have a gorgeous collection of dresses that fit the theme of Gate Street that we like to describe as ‘bohemian glam’. Taking earthy tones, playful materials, floral applique, interesting patterns and truly unique wedding dresses that fit with the luxurious yet rustic nature of the venue.

We have created a gallery below of our favourite bohemian style dresses that we think go perfectly with Gate Street Barn. For more information on this beautiful Surrey wedding venue or our bridal shop in Dorking, simply head to our website and get in touch!

All photos of Gate Street Barn were provided by one of our favourite Surrey Wedding Photographers, Fresh Shoots Studios.

Hannah & Team   

Has bridal fashion been inspired by Meghan Markle & Princess Eugenie?

Meghan Markle & Princess Eugenie Wedding Dress Inspiration…

One of the most common questions asked when guests arrive to our boutique is “do you think the royal weddings have influenced bridal fashion”? In a very simple word – yes. When we first opened our boutique in April 2018, there was hardly any demand for super sleek and simple gowns in mikado or satin.

Photo Source - TimesLIVE

Photo Source - TimesLIVE

Photo Source - Brides.com

Photo Source - Brides.com

Photo Source - People Magazine

Photo Source - People Magazine

Six months later in the autumn and into winter, there has been a huge change in bridal fashion, I believe inspired by our two beautiful members of the royal family, Meghan and Eugenie. Markle’s simple Givenchy wedding dress was demure and elegant from head to toe in a figure-hugging fabric that showed her lean and statuesque figure with full sleeves. Her evening gown for her reception was also a simple gown with clean lines and crisp finish. It was a glorious halter neck that made a statement feature of her beautiful shoulders and slim figure.

Her stunning tiara and extra extra long veil has also inspired our designers to up their ‘sparkle’ game and we’ve been seeing an increase in popularity for BIG tiaras as well as new ranges of veils that are now available in ‘abbey’ length to rival Markle’s exquisite veil. They are over 3ft longer than the cathedral veils we stock so definitely pack a punch!

Photo Source - Cosmopolitan

Photo Source - Cosmopolitan

Eugenie wore a stunning satin off the shoulder gown with a gloriously long train and again it had full sleeves. I think this has certainly inspired the next year of bridal fashion as brides aren’t afraid to have a little more train than they may have normally chosen. Interestingly, Eugenie chose not to have a veil and instead gave all the attention to an awe-inspiring emerald tiara, a loan from her majesty – how kind!

Photo Source - Hello Magazine

Photo Source - Hello Magazine

Photo Source - Cosmopolitan

Photo Source - Cosmopolitan

Photo Source - Hello Magazine

Photo Source - Hello Magazine

I also think it made a lot of us look back to Kate’s wedding dress when she married Prince William back in 2014 and remember how drop dread gorgeous her gown was designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen. The long lace sleeves, plunging neckline and exquisite skirt and train. The world fell in love with her style all over again! Kate’s evening gown was also to die for, again in simple satin accessorised with a beautiful long-sleeved angora shrug.

Photo Source - Brides.com

Photo Source - Brides.com

Photo Source - rd.com

Photo Source - rd.com

Photo Source - people.com

Photo Source - people.com

Our wedding dress shop in Surrey is now know for having a very varied selection of gowns, all different from one another and these include some gowns inspired by our Duchess and Princess. Our wedding dress designers Modeca, Ella Rosa and Phil Collins all have some gorgeous bridal gowns that embody simplicity and are truly stunning and effortless. You can see some of the designs we carry below in the royal gallery!

A lot of girls also have a preference for some sort of sleeve or strap on their wedding dress. Strapless gowns have a beautiful and clean finish but 90% of our brides prefer a little more coverage, just like the royals. We carry a range of dresses with wide straps, off the shoulder straps, thin delicate beaded straps and illusion necklines as well as strapless dresses.

As we offer completely private appointments for our brides and their tribes, with a fun yet relaxed and completely no-pressure environment, we are recommended at some of Surrey, Sussex and London’s most beautiful venues that are fit for a royal occasion! These venues include – Wotton House, Hartsfield Manor, Burford Bride, Gate Street Barn, Denbies Wine Estate, Gildings Barn, Kingswood Golf Club, Nutfield Priory Hotel & Spa, Russets Country House, Leonardslee Lakes & Gardens, Kent House Knightsbridge and Patrick’s Barn.

For more inspiration on finding your perfect wedding dress, whether that means channelling inspiration  from our royal family or creating your own unique look from boho to barbie, follow us on Instagram and Facebook and keep up to date with our wedding dresses and visit our beautiful bridal boutique in Surrey for your exclusive appointment.

Hannah & Team

    

Winter Weddings at Wotton House...

Lots of couples choose to get married in the summertime. There’s always a hope for glorious long sunny days, Pimms on the lawn and having the opportunity to be outside for lots of photos. But if you’re like me and LOVE the romance, intimacy and cosiness of a winter wedding, it’s a great time to start looking for inspiration on how to achieve a beautifully styled celebration that reflects your personality and makes the most out of the season of giving.

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We are the exclusive recommended bridal boutique for Wotton House in Surrey and we’re celebrating that with ‘Wotton Week’ on the blog and on social media. Therefore, we have chosen to take Wotton House under the microscope and pick out some of the key features of this exquisite Surrey wedding venue and suggest some options on how to create an effortlessly magical winter wedding at one of Surrey’s most popular wedding venue.

The Old Library

One of Surrey’s most enchanting ceremony spaces that truly defies belief. In itself, the deep wooden floors, dramatic pillars and vaulted stone ceilings already create a feeling of warmth and cosiness. We recommend accentuating this with an abundance of oversized candles lining the aisle with lots of fake snow sitting beneath. Not big on candles? How about large hurricane vases filed with bundles of fairy lights? Or even tall water filled lily vases with a small LED light in the bottom that changes colour and a floating candle on top?

Photography by Be Unveiled  Dress and Cape by BRIDE by Aster

Photography by Be Unveiled

Dress and Cape by BRIDE by Aster

Atmospheric lighting on the pillars and fairy lights is always a great way of really adding depth and atmosphere to a space and you could even add some moving lights to the ceiling and walls to project the illusion of falling snowflakes!

Make people feel as if they walked into a winter wedding and instead of chiavari chairs, why not hire in wooden benches and dress with faux fur throws and blankets. Instead of fresh and structured floral arrangements, opt for loose and wild foliage with hardy winter flowers and pops of dark burgundy, navy blue and shots of ivory for crispness.

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The Dress

A winter wedding doesn’t mean you need to dress as if you’re going on an exploration of the arctic. But it does mean that you might want to consider a sleeve or some sort of warm accessory to your ensemble to ensure that when you do go outside for photographs, you’re nice and toasty. Thankfully, we‘ve got you covered (get it?)

Choose from our unique collection of stunning dresses including full length and tea length wedding dresses in our Surrey bridal shop. We have dresses with long sleeves and short sleeves, fur wraps and long sleeve lace boleros. We also have our gorgeous capelets that can be added to a lot of different dresses for a little variety.

Photography by Donald Wales

Photography by Donald Wales

The Evelyn Suite

This beautiful wedding suite is light, bright, classy and elegant. It lends itself perfectly to icy blue and snowy silver colour palettes with injections of gold and pastel pinks. However, as the room itself is fairly neutral, it could certainly take a darker and stronger colour palette such as burgundy and navy or forest green and copper. Flowers by Elaine are partially included in Wotton House wedding packages and they have such an amazing variety of centrepieces to choose from to create your signature look.

Whichever colour palette you settle for, accentuate with lots of candles and soft lighting. Turn the lights down in the ceiling and add extra lighting to the tables and uplight the walls in soft shades and warm tones. This brings in the atmosphere and makes everything feel so much cosier.

Photography by Hayley Bray

Photography by Hayley Bray

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Wedding Theme Advice - your ‘theme’ is not the same as your colour scheme. For example, your ‘theme’ cannot be ‘blue’. That means, that anything that is blue could feature in your wedding and this can lead to a very confused and non-cohesive style. Choose a few words that best describe the look and feel you are trying to achieve AND choose a colour palette. You will find that you eliminate or include things based on these titles and end up with something far more cohesive. An example of this would be ‘enchanted winter woodland’ and ‘copper, ivory, navy blue’. Taking these into consideration, you will begin to avoid anything that does not fit the brief of a woodland themed wedding and in turn, you will end up with a very clear and finished decorative look.

The Roman Temple

Let’s be honest. You’re probably not going to have your reception outside between the months of October and March. However, that doesn’t mean that you should avoid the stunning grounds at Wotton. On the contrary! Winter creates some of the most emotive lighting, the most dramatic and tempestuous skies and the most turbulent winds. Get your welly boots and/or umbrella and get outside for some unforgettable photos! The Roman Temple, also known as the Turtle House, is simply magnificent and should be frequented for photos all year round as well as Wotton’s stunning grade II listed Italian gardens.

Photography by Kevin Watkins

Photography by Kevin Watkins

Whatever the weather at your winter wedding, embrace the dwindling light, the endless possible alcoholic hot chocolate combinations you can create on your bespoke hot choc station (Bailey’s for me) and the romance and ‘togetherness’ that the season so effortlessly commands. We can’t wait to see more of our brides winter wedding photos at this stunning Surrey venue.

Hannah & Team x

Wotton House – One of Surrey’s finest hotel wedding venues….

It’s not difficult to fall in love with Wotton House. From the impressive gravel drive way leading up to an imposing façade, the long and winding corridors within and the beautiful classic yet contemporary styling of the reception suite. This is all before we’ve even stepped foot in the quite simply mesmerising library which is licensed for civil ceremonies or outside to the gardens and al fresco secret ceremony garden.

One of the main features for us is the Old Library at Wotton. This room with its’ feature pillars and almost gothic charm, is licensed for civil ceremonies for up to 140 and surely one of the most glorious in the county to exchange vows. The long aisle, fireplace, dressed pillars and vaulted ceiling is completely charming and undeniably has the wow factor.

Be Unveiled Photography - Dress by BRIDE by Aster - Decor by Flowers by Elaine

Be Unveiled Photography - Dress by BRIDE by Aster - Decor by Flowers by Elaine

You’ve just said ‘I do’. Your guests erupt with cheers as you are announced a newly wedded couple and you kiss in an embrace that feels as if it could last forever. You slink back down the aisle, hands locked together and are offered a glass of champagne before you are whisked outside to have photos in the enchanting gardens at Wotton.

There is absolutely no shortage of photo opportunities at Wotton House. Whether you have your couple shots in the roman temple or the Italian gardens, come rain or shine, you are guaranteed memories to last a lifetime. Their 17th century gardens are deemed as such historical interest, they have been given a Grade II listing in addition to the house. Wotton have two recommended photographers; Simon Pope from Be Unveiled or Hayley Bray Photography. They have both worked at Wotton for years and are exceptional photographers, capturing special moments expertly and discretely.

Roman Temple Outdoor Ceremony Garden at Wotton House  Photo credit ‘trulyquirkyweddingvenues.com’

Roman Temple Outdoor Ceremony Garden at Wotton House

Photo credit ‘trulyquirkyweddingvenues.com’

It’s time to eat! Catering at Wotton House is as beautiful as the surroundings, so you and your guests are in for a culinary treat. Choose from an extensive selection of seated menus, afternoon tea or buffets. Invite extra evening guests to celebrate in style; Wotton House are licenses for up to 200 guests in total for an evening celebration.  

Their bedrooms have, along with the rest of hotel recently undergone a £6 million refurbishment, using soft colours and contemporary touches, making Wotton House a truly unique award-winning venue. Many couples choose to host their family and friends at Wotton the night prior to their big day, extending the celebrations and being able to wake up relaxed in the morning, knowing their Parents, Bridesmaids, Best man and guests are all on site. The morning after your special day, all your guests can join you for breakfast and recount all of the days happy memories.

Hayley Bray Photography - Evelyn Suite at Wotton House Hotel

Hayley Bray Photography - Evelyn Suite at Wotton House Hotel

Fun Fact - Did you know that there is supposedly a tunnel at Wotton House leading all the way into Dorking that the servants of the house used to use. There is still a visible doorway in Dorking somewhere!

We are hugely proud and privileged to be the only preferred bridal supplier at Wotton House, offering every bride a unique, relaxed and fun bridal experience. An extra bonus of being a Wotton House bride is that we offer a 10% discount on any of our bridal gowns and we are also based in Dorking, Surrey. Whether you are looking for a classic yet unique princess dress or fitted silhouette wedding dress, we look forward to welcoming you to our Surrey boutique!

Hannah & Team BRIDE

An Interview with a Bridal Designer...

Today I was lucky enough to talk to the brains behind the incredible bridal brand Modeca which came to be in 1946 in the Netherlands. I spoke with both the designer himself, Alden Misolas and the amazing Helena who has been with Modeca for years and heads up the marketing for this sensational brand. See below our questions and their answers to find out more about this Dutch powerhouse!

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Can you tell me about how MODECA came to be?

Modeca Bridal has come a long way; they first started in 1946 in Oldenzaal, The Netherlands, as a little shop that sold lace, buttons and other little haberdashery. After a while, Modeca successfully moved on and started designing hand crafted bridal designs. From that point on, the business has completely flourished!

Today, Modeca is run by Dick van Zutphen, the owner and director of this well-established Dutch bridal house. In 2016 Modeca Europe celebrated 70 years in business and our international partners celebrated in this success with us.

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Where do you take your inspiration from?

Alden Misolas is the head of design at Modeca Bridal, responsible for all bridal collections under the Modeca Bridal umbrella: Modeca Collection, Curves by Modeca, Le Papillon by Modeca, Jazz by Modeca.

"Before I start a collection, I first gather all kinds of inspiration that might inspire me when designing dresses. I closely watch what the trends of the season are in ready-to-wear, as well as in haute couture. That way I can apply modern details to my dresses. I am also very much influenced by the works of leading fashion designers such as Christian Dior, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Lacroix, just to name a few here. They also have a big impact on my creations."

Do you design with a certain style/type of bride in mind?

"My designs are always destined to all types of women," says Alden Misolas. "I try to make the collection as varied as it can be, without missing the specific handwriting that belongs to the collection itself. It is always a joy for me to see that the dresses are worn by all types of body shape. Each bride deserves to feel beautiful - especially on her wedding day”.

What does it mean to be a MODECA bride?

A Modeca Bride shines bright because of happiness and self confidence in her dress. We like to bring magic to each and every dress and each and every bride with our designs and attention to detail. We truly believe that it is more important to notice the bride behind the dress than the other way around!

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What was your inspiration for your 2019/20 collection?

With our 2019 collections, we tried to differentiate the Modeca Collection with the Le Papillon by Modeca line even more than in past years. The Modeca Collection is the main collection of Dutch bridal house Modeca and has always been classy of with a hint of sexiness, without being over the top. Le Papillon by Modeca is a young collection; it is wearable and affordable Dutch couture.

Jazz by Modeca will stay as a 'separates line' with a fun and flirtatious feel. Brides can play with different combinations of body tops with skirts and pants. This year we introduced a plain crepe dress that can be combined with three different tops which will also create three different looks. It’s a fashion forward collection for a fashionable bride."


Tell me why you started MODECA CURVE?

"This season we introduced the beautiful Modeca Collection - Curves," the designer explains. We started with a small capsule collection of about 9 dresses, starting from size UK18. The idea behind this collection is to give curvy brides a beautiful, well detailed dress with sophisticated sexiness. I truly believe that curvy brides deserve to have the same amount of attention as every dress we offer. The Curves collection offers the same detailed beadings and embellishments that you would expect from a glamorous and well designed gown.

Since we all have been working on the designs for the 2020 season, it is my great pleasure to announce that Modeca will change the capsule to an independent collection, called 'Curves by Modeca' which will be launched in 2019 ready for 2020."

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What is your favourite MODECA gown from any year and any collection and WHY? 

"I am not sure if I can truly point on a favourite gown...," Alden Misolas starts thinking. "Since I started in bridal design, it became my passion to cultivate ways of working creatively with shapes and colour as most traditional wedding dresses are ivory..

I work with all kinds of fabrics, weather it’s soft chiffon or taffeta or mikado. I love creating soft dresses but also voluminous ones; each kind has its own appeal. I mostly go with the flow, working with the elements available whilst considering new trends in bridalwear. Right now, we’re focusing on soft and luxurious fabrics that can be voluminous but also lightweight."

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Because our designer couldn’t pinpoint his favourite gown, I’ll take the liberty of doing it for him and say that for me, right now, my absolute favourite is ELEANORA! The soft smokey pastel grey shade combined with pale salmon pink flowers and ink blue leaves is absolutely exquisite! (See below!)

Hannah x

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