Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Hampshire and Dorset Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to email@example.com
To view more expert advice on a different topic, please select one from the list below.
Something old, something new
Q. I want to not only look great in my wedding dress, but feel good too! I'd therefore like to find something with green credentials but I'm not sure where to start. Can you help?
A. Erica Arnold says: Erica says: Finding a genuinely eco-friendly wedding dress can seem like a tricky business. If your heart's set on a new dress, then try to find one made in the UK with fabrics carrying the Global Organic Textile Standard or Made in Green by OEKO-TEX label. However, if you're looking for a pre-loved option, there are eco-friendly dry cleaning companies that specialise in wedding dresses, which you will probably have to have done, especially if it's been in storage. Original vintage dresses require specialist treatment however and personally, I only use eco-friendly methods. If the vintage look isn't for you though, a contemporary dress made by reworking old fabrics and gowns is an ethical way of having something unique to you without blowing your budget.
Erica Arnold,Real Green Dress
Finding the one
Q. How long before my wedding should I be looking at buying my dress?
A. Patricia Ireland says: Patricia says: If you want a bespoke gown for your wedding day you should ideally start looking at least 12 to 18 months before your big day. For designer collections, times vary. Our main supplier Victoria Kay has a lead time for dresses of between 16 and 20 weeks from the date the order is placed by us.
How long should I allow for any alterations?
If you've bought a dress off the peg it's best to allow three to four months before your wedding for any changes to be completed. Even bespoke dresses will require small adjustments before the big day. We complete all alterations to our brides' dresses as close to the wedding day as possible to ensure the perfect fit.
Patricia Ireland,Test Valley Bridal Services
Comfort and style
Q. We're planning to have a winter wedding next year because it's our favourite time of year. What should I wear that's not only on trend, but will keep me warm too?
A. Carina says: Carina says: You really can't go wrong with a sleeve, they add a touch of elegance, sophistication and warmth too, perfect for a winter wedding. If they're not for you though a bolero in lace, satin or mikado silk will keep you toasty for the ceremony and you can take it off for the reception giving you two different looks.
Silk is a natural breathable fabric which keeps you snug and looks gorgeous. Mikado and satins work beautifully in winter, shimmering in the frosty weather and reflecting the low winter sun. They're heavy enough to keep their shape and keep you warm too. Also if ever an excuse was needed to wear a feminine feather or faux fur jacket, a winter wedding is it! Don't forget your shoes either. There are so many styles to choose from but a block heel is safer than a stiletto on slippery ground and is very on trend.
Q. I know the weather can be unpredictable in the autumn but I still want to look stunning in a fabulous dress. What would you suggest that's suitable for the time of year and glamorous too?
A. Sam Walsh says: Sam says: Dresses in champagne colours work really well for autumn brides. Think subtle shades rather than bold, like our beautiful silk champagne chiffon Lyn Ashworth dress (pictured). Bride Clare teamed it with an ivory bolero with long lace sleeves for her autumn wedding and changed it up from a day-to-night look by removing the bolero and adding a belt.
Dressing the part
Q. I don't know where to start when it comes to choosing my wedding dress. I want to not only look fabulous, but also keep the planet in mind. What would you advise?
A. Erica Arnold says: Buy from a British manufacturer to cut back on transport miles. If you have the time and the budget, there are still a few companies in the UK that can weave silk or cotton to order for a bespoke gown.
Go for a design or separates that you can alter to wear again or change the colour using a low-impact dye. If you choose a pre-loved dress that needs sprucing up before the big day, look for a specialist company that offers an eco-friendly alternative to traditional dry-cleaning methods.
If you're looking for something different, our Pure range of vintage dresses are cleaned and restored before sale using environmentally friendly methods. For the modern bride, our Evolution collection of contemporary dresses are made from re-worked vintage dresses and fabrics. Any new material incorporated in the designs is ethically sourced including quality 'end of run' fabrics and remnants.