I’ve known Naomi for just over 4 years now, she’s one of those people who’s always got a MASSIVE smile on her face and actually brightens up a room by just walking into it. You’ll see this from the photos…
Before I get going I must say a massive thank you to Richard Hanmer from Ben and Molly for the beautiful photographs included in this blog.
Naomi and Ally have been together for donkey’s years! Having met at university their love blossomed and they just one of those couples who are so obviously made for one another. They wanted their wedding to tell a story of their joint love of food, booze and generally having a good time! Being half Chinese there was always going to be Chinese elements thrown into the day and this was a new experience for most of their guests but I’ll tell you more about this later. The reception /wedding weekend as it turned out to be, was held at Symondsbury Manor near Bridport in Dorset. Nay being from Dorset herself it only felt right to return there. The manor suited their very specific needs perfectly. They wanted a big house for in Naomi’s words ‘a 3 day party’. They had it from Friday – Monday and we’re able to really relax there and make it their own and that they definitely did.
I arrived at the super early time of 7.15am, unloaded my hoards of make-up and rushed through to see the bride who was bouncing off the walls with excitement – this is no exaggeration!! We had to start early because this bride had two outfits and two hair do’s to create, all in aid of the chinese elements which started at 10am sharp. I got on with getting the bridesmaids, Beth, Harry and Katie ready followed by Naomi’s mum Yee Tak. They were all involved in the Chinese games.
The bridesmaids were wearing Coast dresses in an aubergine colour, As all the girls were quite different in colourings and looks I gave them somethign similar but varied the depths of colour. Beth gave me free reign to do what ever I wanted – love her! I went for a a soft cream with lilac tones and then used a rich dark purply blue into the outer corners to add depth. I used a neat line of gel eye liner to add definition and then plenty of Diorshow Waterproof mascara to finish. The girls all wore a Make-up academy lipstick in shade 7, a rich raspberry shade. Katie wore somethign similar to Beth but not as strong eye liner but still a strong dark purple into the corners to help to add shape. Harriet is not as confident with make-up as the other girls so I gave her something feminine but avoided masses of liner and colour so not to over do it.
The idea behind the games is for the groom to show the brides family his worthiness to marry the bride. The bridesmaids set him challenges such as… Ally had to say I love you in 10 different languages, 10 push ups with claps, 10 countries beginning with A and cities beginning with N, to name a few and finally he had to write a list of promises which Naomi had to accept before she left her boudoir to see him, dressed in her Chinese finery.
Naomi’s eye make-up consisted of a thin layer of L’oreal Infallible foundation, and true match powder, she has some lovely natural tones in her skin so covering her in foundation seemed sacrilege. I added a pinky colour to her cheeks using Bourjious little pots of colour and definition to her eyebrows with the Body Shop eyebrow kit 03. The look we decided on for her eyes was a very feminine and quite colourful purple shade, Naomi has always loved purple and it seemed to work well with both her Chinese outfit and her traditional gown. I used the Lily Cole purple eyeshadow set from the Body Shop. Starting with a very light pink over the entire base up to the eyebrow. I added a lilac over the top slightly dampening my brush to make the shadow stronger and longer lasting. I finished with a rich aubergine in the corners to add depth of colour and shape to the eyes. I finished with black Bobbi Brown gel liner along the top lashline and mac eyeliner in black along the lower lashline. I always add a bit of shadow under the eyeliner, it stops the liner from moving and blends the look together well. The mascara I used was Diorshow Waterproof (of course). Her lips had two shades, the first shade was Make Up Academy Lipstick in Shade 2 which is a rich brown, red and then I used Make Up Academy Lipstick in Shade 6.
The next part of the day was the Chinese tea ceremony, where Naomi and Ally served tea to their parents. This I know was quite emotional for Nay, lovely to see just how important these cultural elements are to her.
After the ceremony was over it was time for our Chinese bride to change into her more traditional English wedding gown and a quick hair change. Naomi and the bridesmaids hair was done by a family friend Charlie. I took the time to give her a few touch ups where the tea tears had got in the way and we changed her lip colour and she was ready to go. Her bridesmaids helped her to the registry office whilst we all awaited her arrival on what was by now one of the hottest days of the year!!!
The ceremony was lovely, to see two people so utterly perfect for each other tie the knot was quite emotional. Not that Naomi’s grin ever left her face – love her! See below the picture of the happy couple hi-fiving when it was pronounced that they were husband and wife!!
Naomi’s Chinese dress came from Hong Kong, and her traditional gown was a Maggie Sottero from Allison Jayne in Bristol. She had not 1 but 3 pairs of shoes, well she couldn’t decide!!! Her red pair was a pair of Christian Louboutins she already owned, the gold pair were Carvela Kurt Geiger called Attitude and the purple pair were called Coldfeet in the Nine West sale. Her hair piece came from a bridal shop in Hong Kong which her Auntie brought over with her.
Back at the marquee the fairy godmother of weddings had been working her magic styling her little heart out. It was beautiful, and I know having the wonderful Kirsten from The Little Wedding Helper there really took Naomi’s mind off it on the morning and was one less thing to worry about. Money well spent. Here’s some of her styling…
The food was fab, a tapas style meal, it was of a very high standard and there was plenty of it! Yum Yum! The canapes and main day food was cooked and served by Heather at The Foodie Queen.
The very delicious dessert table was put together by friends and family, really hard to chose what to have believe me! The naked lemon sponge cake was by James at Ivy Lilly Cakes.
The rest of the day was spent eating and drinking more, including barrels of local cider and stir fried noodles made by their friends Candy and Kim. It was a really relaxed and fun wedding with 2 very special people. We partied into the night, playing on the coconut shy, pulling stupid faces in the photo booth and dancing to our hearts content to The Jackson 3, a local band in Dorset.
Congratulations Mr and Mrs Strachan! I just wanted to share these 2 further photographs with you because I think they’re gorgeous! Nice one Rich!
Naomi had a few thank you’s to make:
Wow, everyone needs a big thanks. All our parents for their constant support and help, James for doing the pasty run, being the MC on the day and generally keeping our glasses topped up with alcohol throughout the weekend! Our amazing friends Pete and Rich for running/sprinting out to get ipod speakers at the last minute for the registry office and making it back in time, Tim and his team at Oakleaf Marquees for being so efficient, great to deal with and managing to drive the lorry up the driveway – very impressive! Kirsten for making everything look so beautiful, Peter and Sally at Symondsbury Manor for being so accommodating and letting us get on with it, Candy and Kim for very kindly cooking the noodles in the evening and Candys help in the tea ceremony, Clio, Allie, the mum’s and my sister Katie for staying up late the night before to fill all the jam jars with flowers and make the button holes etc, Stu, Euan and the dad’s for lifting the kegs of cider and beer and putting up the lights. The bridesmaids for being well just blimming amazing, Kev Jackson and his band for getting everyone on the dance floor and keeping us there all night. Charlie who did my hair in 2 different styles and did all the girls’ hair too – she can work wonders with some rollers and kirby grips and of course all our friends and family for making the journey down to Dorset.
Naomi very kindly said:
Choosing Emily to do my makeup, my bridesmaids and my mum’s was a very easy decision to make. Having been friends for a few years now and been on nights out where she had done my make up before, I knew my face would be in very capable hands. I was that adamant I wanted Emily to do my make up we even chose our wedding date to fit in with her availability!
We had a great and perhaps unique trial where I asked Emily to do 2 different looks at the same time! I couldn’t decide whether I wanted a more ‘bridally’ look or something a bit different and glitzy and shimmery, so at my request she did one eye in one look and the other in another. I did look a bit bizarre but it was great to see how different they both were and to compare each one side by side. I loved both looks but ended up deciding on the more bridal looking one, and going a bit more natural.
On the day itself Emily was brilliant to have around, joining in with the fun and laughter but getting on with the job at hand. All the girls and my mum loved their makeup and looked beautiful and said how nice it was to be pampered. I loved my look too and it had immense staying power considering all the tears that were shed (from happiness!), how hot it was and the moves that were being busted out on the dance floor.
To sum it all up, you won’t regret choosing Emily as your make up artist. She’s a true professional with an easy-going and fun manner and she’ll make you look and feel a million dollars. Thank you! xx