The most amazing feature of Highbury Hall is the gorgeous staircase. You can just imagine brides floating down it in a sea of silk and lace on their special day. I had these thoughts in my head as I walked up the stairs, pausing dead in my tracks to admire the most fabulous dress I had ever seen. This 1920s style gold sheath is the sort of dress that tempts married women into divorce in order to get married again and WEAR THAT DRESS! “It’s Jenny Packham” I was reliably informed. I thought this would be the perfect dress for Keely Hawes to wear as Lady Agnes when ‘Upstairs, Downstairs’ returns.
I reluctantly moved across the landing, leaving my dress behind, and entered the wonderfully named Miss Hilda’s room. This beautiful bedroom, complete with four-poster bed, had been transformed into a vintage bride’s boudoir. There were rails of beautiful new dresses, courtesy of ‘The wedding club’ and also acres of vintage styles by ‘vintage frocks and crocks’. I was entranced by the beautiful Elie Saab dress that was hanging from the wall, and the amazing vintage gowns were fascinating the brides to be. I heard one bride saying ‘my mom got married in a dress just like that, as she stared at an applique floral lace dress. There was a beautiful silk. long-sleeved bias cut dress reminiscent of Kate Moss’s vintage dress worn to ‘The Golden Age of Couture’ show, the one famously ripped by Courtney Love. The wedding club are co-founders of the Designer Vintage Bridal show, and Clare and Emma were kept busy all afternoon by delighted brides making bookings and trying on their dream gowns.
‘The wedding club’ shared Miss Hilda’s bedroom with Rachel Simpson shoes. Rachel Simpson, the second set of brains behind the show, creates the most sumptuous wedding shoes to suit every taste, in a range of gorgeous fabrics. I was particularly taken with the coloured shoes in satin fabrics that I thought could look good for any special occasion. The shoes had been expertly displayed on Miss Hilda’s dressing table, just to add that further touch of authenticity to the clothing. My favourite’s were the 1940s style black and white peep toes, these would look amazing with any outfit – just Gorgeous!
Taking a trip across the landing to The West Wing, I entered a fairytale room full of exquisite bridal couture. This room was home to Tobi Hannah, a bridal company that specialises in short and tea length bridal dresses especially designed with modern brides in mind. Tobi Hannah seem to have cornered a niche market in sophisticated cocktail style dress, prom dresses and short sexy ruffled affairs that are just perfect in todays modern wedding settings. I loved the gorgeous dresses that hung from the wall, and on the vintage rails.
Also residing in this room, was, with the obvious exception of the amazing Jenny Packham dress, my favourite design of the day. This was from Lindsey Fleming Couture, an award-winning Scottish company who specialise in Celtic and vintage inspired dresses. The dress I fell in love with was flapper inspired. Imagine Zelda Fitzgerald, the quintessential 1920s ‘it’ girl in her glamorous heyday, and you will see this dress in your imagination. It was designed to have strings of beads hanging from it, and a rinky dinky bobbed haircut accessorising it. On checking out their website I was delighted to find that their ‘Jazz Age’ inspired dresses were named after 1920s and 1930s icons. I love the Claudette pictured below. Absolutely stunning!
Fashion-mommy decided that now was a good time for another cup of the fantastic tea…and maybe even another slice of cake. Join me again for part 3, when I meet über bloggers Kat of ‘Rock n Roll Bride’ and Anabell of ‘Love my dress’.