I am coming up to celebrating my 10th wedding anniversary this summer (well, I suppose that should be our anniversary, seeing as my husband is involved too). We only had 5 months to plan our wedding, which worked out really well as we didn’t get too precious about anything, and just organised a fun day for our guests. Back then it was quite difficult to find the quirky touches – we did manage some such as pink dolly mixtures on our tiered cake, and hydrangea heads in bowls for table decorations but little in the way of quirk was being offered at wedding fairs at the time. I recall there was one person doing handmade favours, in a satin fabric, and that was about it.
Fast forward 10 years, and brides to be, you don’t know how lucky you are!
I have been running sewing hen parties since we started 3 years ago, but never thought about promoting them via wedding fairs, thinking them to be these stuffy corporate things. I got an email from the lovely Donna (more about her below) asking if I would like a stand in her “Make Your Wedding Fabulous” area at Hove Town Hall. She told me it was a vintage fair and after seeing her style of work and meeting up (we recognised each other from school, both local girls!) I thought I’d give it a go.
Wow, is all I’ll say. The wedding fair was organised by http://www.bellesevents.co.uk and they specialise in alternative vintage fairs – where brides and grooms are encouraged to put personal touches to their big day. There was music during the day – including vintage style performers and djs, pretty cakes on display and don’t start me on the gorgeous dresses. Don’t think Mr QP would have liked me to have come home in a wedding dress though… although the lady I spoke to whose partner had not proposed may have had more of an issue with a pretty white dress in her bag! One thing I would say is although the fairs are aimed at weddings I think some of the ideas would adapt to landmark birthday parties and baby showers – something I think is a real compliment to having a diverse range of creative stall holders.
Some of the people I met…
River Jones, a celebrant, was lovely. She is doing a vowel renewal on the Brighton Eye this week – what an interesting job she has! https://www.facebook.com/RiverJonesCelebrant
Katy – someone I recognised through our children. Good her name is in the title of the business as it was one of those moments where you only remember their children’s name (sorry Katy!) She makes pretty cakes – her website is here http://www.katycakes.co.uk The tall one at the back has lace icing round the sides (the photo doesn’t do it justice) very apt for a stitchers cake.
This is one of the displays from Donna, whose company is called Fabulous Flora http://www.fabulousflora.co.uk She does flowers, but I am much more interested in her fabulous vintage tablecloth collection..! She has recently opened a florist shop in Worthing so well worth checking out if you are over that way.
My friend Valerie from http://www.brightoncrafts.co.uk was there. She does crafty parties – felt making, soap making, candle making… Her table looked very weddingy
..and my stand. I set the space up so it reflected QP – bright and quirky. I always take too many quilts to events, so we had quite a quilty wall. I set the front of the table up as if it were a workshop – to give a flavour of what we do.
There was a lot of interest in our hen parties – and baby showers and general workshops which is great. I have also discussed wedding signature quilts, and providing crafty parties in a box so came away with yet more ideas.
There is a pdf all about the parties available on our website here http://quilty-pleasures.myshopify.com/pages/parties