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Ask the experts

Here is a selection of Q&As from An Essex 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 editor@anessex.wedding

To view more Q&A's on a different topic, please select one from the list below.

Hot topic: Wedding dilemmas

Our experts solve your dilemmas

Designs on you

Designs on you

Q. I've tried on lots of dresses but I haven't found the one. My friend suggested a bespoke gown but I know nothing about the process. What's involved?

A. Bibiana Cabello Rubio says: A made-to-measure garment is not just a dress, it's a once-in-a-lifetime experience in which you live the process of making your dream gown.

The first appointment is a chance to get to know each other and understand your requirements. After this, we sketch some designs and present them to you with a choice of suitable materials. We can also look at bespoke embroideries; many brides want something with a deep meaning to them such as stars, birds or a specific colour.

The chosen design will be materialised in toile (a cotton fabric) and the first fitting will take place so we can check the pattern and make sure you like the fit. We then cut the chosen fabric for the next fitting. This is always a very exciting stage for our customers as they see their perfect dress come to life. This is followed by usually two or three more sessions, which allow us to test the design and get it just right.



Q. We'd love to wed al fresco but there's so much to plan. What are the key things to remember when organising an outdoor wedding?

A. Nat Browning says: The most important thing to remember is to enjoy every moment. Whether you choose a grand country house, a hotel or an outdoor wedding, it should be fun, creative and the best day of your life.

There's no denying that tying the knot outside involves lots of different aspects – think marquees, toilets, generators etc – and it can potentially hold many hidden costs. At Browning Bros we have a tipi or marquee in situ, luxury washrooms, mains electricity and glamping accommodation. We also have 10 acres of natural beauty from lakeside views to pretty woodland, and celebrations can last all weekend. We provide all the basic infrastructure so that you can enjoy planning the finer details such as decoration, flowers and which cocktails to have on the menu!

Another issue to contend with is the weather. However, we have lots of undercover space so that should the weather be unsettled everyone will still have an amazing time.

The great outdoors

The great outdoors

Q. We wanted to get married in our garden but we've found out it won't be legally recognised. What are our options?

A. Shelley Bell says: Currently in England and Wales, legal marriages can only be held in licensed venues. While some of these are outdoors, there still needs to be a permanent structure with a roof to hold the ceremony underneath. However, there are still options. First, you'll need to head to the government website to find out how to get legally married in a register office or sanctioned building.

Once you've done this, the only limit is your imagination. We can create your ideal ceremony without worrying about the legal aspect. I've conducted weddings in vineyards, bluebell woods, and national parks. Start by discussing with your partner what you'd like your day to look and feel like. You might have an apple orchard at the bottom of your garden where you can stand under the boughs of a tree, or you may prefer to have a boho-style tipi or circus-themed marquee. Perhaps you'd prefer to just keep it simple by surrounding yourself with loved ones on picnic blankets at your home.

Once you have an idea in mind, contact me to arrange a meeting and we'll discuss how to make your dream of a personal and meaningful ceremony a reality.



Q. What flowers and styles work best for a bohemian wedding theme?

A. Victoria Makepeace says: For this, I envisage big blousy blooms in beautiful colours, designed with natural free-falling foliage. I'd create a bouquet on a light, oval-shaped grid on to which I'd add individual stems and greenery to add different textures and dimensions.

This relaxed vibe looks wonderful all year round just by adjusting the tones and flowers to fit the season. A spring wedding lends itself to tulips, hyacinths, freesias, peonies, irises and anemones for a splash of colour and heavenly scent. In summer, imagine a bouquet bursting with roses, hydrangeas, dahlias, and asters in gentle pastels or vibrant pink, purple and red.

Don't even get me started on autumn and winter weddings! I love a look that's full of ranunculi, proteas, thistles, berries, roses and trailing amaranthus in deep red, pink and burgundy with a hint of orange for the brave.

A flower crown is the icing on the cake for this theme and is a great alternative to the traditional veil. I hope this free-spirited theme will last as the possibilities are endless and I can let my imagination run wild.