Monday, 23 January 2012

You Do, but then You Don't... - Can marriage be detrimental to a relationship?

Many of us greeted the news of the split between Heidi Klum and British soul singer Seal with much shock and sadness.  Not just because they always looked so happy together - we all know that looks can be deceiving and that the camera DOES lie - but more because they went through so much together in the early days of their courtship, it seemed like they could overcome anything.


The couple met when Heidi was pregnant with her first child (daughter Leni by Formula One boss Flavio Briatore).  Seal stood by Heidi was by her side during the birth and from the word go raised Leni as his own.  The couple went on to marry two years later.  It takes a lot of courage, honour too, to raise another man's child as your own with true love and affection, so it's quite understandable why Heidi fell for Seal.

The couple were infamous for their parties.  As well as their Halloween celebrations, every year they renewed their marriage vows in ceremonies and parties, each more wild and extravagent than the last.  Vow renewals can be romantic and serve as wonderful reminder of why you married your partner, but if you feel the need to incessantly renew them, were they really worth taking in the first place?

When former Blue Peter presenter Katy Hill married her childhood sweetheart Andrew Frampton, everybody assumed their marriage would last a lifetime.  They'd been together for 12 years before their wedding day and with her strong Christian upbringing, it was believed that they had what it took to make a relationship last.  Not so: they were separated inside eighteen months.  Details later emerged that Katy was reportedly a virgin when she wed and that they hadn't even lived together before their big day.

Marriage is more than just a romantic dream; there are a lot of practicalities involved.  How much can you really know about the person you're committing yourself to for life if you don't know what they're like in bed and you don't know what they're like around the house?  What about how they organise their money, or how many children they want to have?  It's in order to answer questions and others like these that many religious sects offer pre-marriage classes.  You may feel like you know your partner inside out and back to front, but sometimes it's good to know that you are definitely singing from the same hymn sheet.

Whilst there is no such training regularly offered for couples tying the knot in a civil ceremony, counselling charity Relate offer Couples Workshops on how to keep love alive and how to handle arguments.

Marriage can be a wonderful institution, but it can also be the death knell of a relationship.   If you're not sure whether he's for life or not, it's probably best to find out before you say 'I do' as thereafter it gets very expensive and complicated to 'un-do'.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

DIY Weddings - How much of your big day do you actually want to do yourself

Your wedding is going to be the most special day of your life, therefore it's tempting to want to make all the arrangements yourself.  Further, it's hard to not want to make everything yourself: from the flowers and the flavours, to the invitations and even your dress.  What brides often fail to comprehend is that there is so much involved in planning your wedding, unless you have all the free time in the world, oodles of storage space and months and months of advance planning, it's nigh on impossible to do all the details yourself.  So the question becomes: where do you draw the line and start delegating?

In the film Monster In Law, Charlie (played by Jennifer Lopez) designs and makes her own wedding dress.  It looks amazing, no two ways about it, but we're all left thinking: 'How did she find the time to do that between organising a wedding and fighting with Jane Fonda?'  Making your own dress takes a lot of confidence and skill.  It's not a trick you can learn overnight.  However, in times of a recession, being thrifty and handy with a needle fits in very nicely with a tight budget.  Quirkier, more vintage-y style dresses are very in vogue.  Making your own dress at least guarantees you something original.  Although perhaps making one out of football shirts isn't to everyone's taste.

Creating your own wedding bouquet can be a fun thing to do as well as saving you money, but it shouldn't be done without plenty of forward planning.  Using flowers from your garden may sound like a budget-saving no-brainer, but garden flowers are meant to be outside in the ground.  They may also be diseased or be suffering from damp.  They're stalks are almost never straight, which can be bad for shaping or styling.  Get a little extra help from the experts beforehand by booking yourself onto a one-day wedding flowers course, run by many florists including Jamie Aston and Pesh.

It is our aim at Pesh flowers to use as many English grown flowers as possible during the summer months when they are most available.Would you like to learn how to create beautiful stylish floral designs for your home?Pesh Flower School. Flower arranging courses and workshops in London.
Pesh Flowers

If you're more an arts and crafts kind of person, making invitations, place settings and orders of service is wonderful way of adding your personal touch to your wedding.  If there are going to be hundreds of pieces to make, enlist friends and family to help you make them from a pre-set design by yourself.  Hobbycraft is great place to find inspiration and details for your paper souvenirs.

The trick is not to make things over complicated: you are the centre and the back bone of the show.  You are the monkey AND the organ grinder.  Getting bogged down in the details will leave other things forgotten.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

The Wedding of The Year 2011

It's been a bumper year of weddings in 2011.  For many people, picking their wedding of the year comes down to the battle of the Kates.  The line has been drawn: which side are you on?  Moss or Middleton?

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It was a clash of two classic wedding styles: one full of pomp and ceremony and tradition, the other all about partying and celebrating the biggest day of your life.  Spring vs Summer.  Refined elegances vs unashamed frivolity.  Public vs private.  An invitation to either was the hottest tickets in town.

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The marriage of Prince William (future Prince of Wales and King) was an inevitable certainty.  It was just a question of when.  Royal correspondents have been hotly tipping the event ever since 2007.  (Their hearts were broken when the royal couple decided to split instead, but spirits soon revived after the romance was rekindled a few months later.)  But true to his word, Prince William promised he would get married when he was 28 and that's eactly what he did.  Catherine Middleton, created the Duchess of Cambridge, was one of the most talked about women of the year.  Love her or loathe her, the image of her on her wedding day is now iconic and highly sought after.

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She's been an icon of fashion ever since she sprang on the scene in the early 90s.  So when Kate Moss's engagement to Jamie Hince became public knowledge, everyone expected her wedding to be no different.  She didn't disappoint.

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Decadence was most definite the by-word as Kate's Great Gatsby-themed big day came to realisation.  All the coolest party kids - Paul and Stella McCartney,  Sadie Frost, Kelly Osbourne - were in town for the event, and true to her fashion roots, the event was covered by US Vogue.  Even Anna Wintour herself dained to put in an appearance.

Plenty of other gorgeous and glam celebrity weddings took place over the year.   Lily Allen married Sam Cooper in a cute, country, Cotswolds wedding in June, while Sir Paul McCartney hoped to make it third time lucky with his American heiress bride Nancy Shevall in October with a chic city event.

But what you must remember, beyond the dress and the champagne and the froth and the gloss, a wedding is still about two people who love each other very much and are swearing to spend the rest of their lives together.  It's as simple as that.

Remember: marriage is a tricky business and the wedding is just the start.

A happy 2012 to all my readers! x x x