Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Liam Frost new video 'Good Things Are Coming Our Way'

Good Friday was for me a day with my Mum sorting wedding budgets and to do lists, Rob however was busying himself in Stockport at the Garrick Theatre as 1stAD to Duck Duck Moose and Son's Stu Gillies on the production of Liam Frost's new music video.  The single is due to be released 3rd May, but you can watch the video on youtube right now!

The video was filmed in one continuous shot using new technology Red Cameras, don't ask me what they do, I just have it on good authority for those in the know, that they are quite fantastic.  You will see Rob's short clad legs climbing a step ladder, but this is not about him, it is a big fat well done to Stu and his partner Joe.  Let's wish them huge success, may it go supersonic for them, and of course to Liam too.

Clare x

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Graphic/Web Design - Year 1

This was a Graphic Design module, the item we were to design was a website.  I had just started working on my friend's site so this was a perfect project for me.

Portfolio at Uni, will get it up on here as soon as I get it back!

Final Mark: 82 = First

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Wedding Websites

One of the first things I did after becoming betrothed, was to create our wedding website.

Aside from a small number of our wedding party, the guests are all online.  Everything I do is online, until recently I paid for my dance lessons online, I order my groceries from, my clothes from fashion websites, my hosiery from, music iTunes, DVD’s, books, flowers or, hair products, the list is endless but I think you probably get the picture.

Anytime I need to check for information I use the internet, checking my bank balance, looking for directions, opening times and so on.

So, where best to allow our guests to obtain all information regarding the big day?  Of course, the traditional invitation pack, with all the directions printed, the menus, the RSVP card, the gist list etc.  Well much as this is lovely, I have 400 guests to invite and I’m not only an eco-sympathiser, I am also a spendaphobic.  And if truth be told, once I have stuck the save the date card to the notice board in the kitchen, I will lose all the other information, the vital postcode, dress code, gift list etc.  It is not intentional or sloppy, I am just very busy, like most people living in 2010.  

With a website people have always got a source to check upon, at any time from almost anywhere, without the embarrassment of guests putting an emergency call into the wedding party en-route (usually running late) to the ceremony. I have been so specific with details that I do not think I have missed anything of any importance (please feel free to correct me here).

Not all electronic invitations are successful, often emails can filter into spam, facebook group invites often go unnoticed (so guilt of that also) and the arrival of the printed or handwritten hand crafted or professionally produced card through the letterbox is terribly exciting.  So we made a compromise.  

Vistaprint offer an incredible service at very reasonable rates.  The Holland based company has a vast array of designs, or you can create your own design, as we did.  They will print your image in most formats.  We selected postcards for invitations to the full ceremony and party and business cards for evening invitations.  The quality is very good and the turnaround is excellent.

The invitations direct guests to the website for all information, with downloads available to print for those who feel secure holding a document.  And for those without access to a computer there is my telephone number printed, and they can request an information pack to be posted.
Guests leave comments, make enquiries and R.S.V.P via the website.  These all come to me electronically, allowing me to process in my efficient, slightly obsessive little way.
The design reflects the event, I wanted guests to get a feeling for the occasion from the outset.  I chose the colour theme for the site, green for the grass in the field, white for the tent, and we carried that through to the invitations and even the wedding party dress.

Designs, themes and schemes vary from wedding to wedding as they do from project to project.  
Those who desire a more romantic feel may want flowers or scrolls, others may want their site to reflect their own personalities or tastes so I would incorporate their specifications and tailor it to them.

If my designs are not to your taste, there are many web design companies who would create a bespoke package for you.  I have a number of contacts with graphic designers and animation specialists that I could refer on.  Feel free to enquire email: or

Clare x

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Wedding Suppliers

Wedding List to date…

Had an exciting appointment yesterday at Hyndburn Council office, the registrar for Rossendale, a lovely warm lady, took all our details to give notice of our intention to marry. The notice will be posted at Preston Town Hall, and so long as no-one has any legal objection we will be issued with authority to marry.

That being sorted we were able to book the legal marriage bit at Bury Register Office. We will marry on the Monday following the Humanist ceremony at my parents. We chose Bury as this was where Rob’s parents Chris and Bernard married, we plan to stage a photograph to do an homage of their wedding photo, we are sentimental old souls.

So lots of plans have been created and some fulfilled, although the venue is far from ready, and I only have one more school holiday left before breaking for summer, yikes.

I’d like to share some wonderful resources and suppliers that have helped inspire me and realise my vision. awesome inspiration for all things wedding, but also for some brain and soul food, look at all the gorgeous pictures, cakes, clothes, jewellery, flowers and locations from some of the world's most creative people and amazing places.

Vivienne of Holloway Tabatha introduced me to this fabulous designer, gorgeous swing dresses, sarongs and bombshell get up and cute accessories.

Betsey Johnson ooooooh shoes! Also accessories, undies, jewellery and handbags

Iron Fist if I was not a fan of shoes before, I certainly am now, quite possibly some of the most exciting shoes I have ever seen, other than those on Jem and the Holograms or the Misfits

I cannot show my wedding dress at this stage but I can say that it is designed by the fabulous Maggie Sottero, a design I fell in love with when searching for Mrs McBride's dress. The lovely Lynne at Maria Modes in Macclesfield is sourcing mine!

I came across Deborah Boyle's work accidentally by flicking through a friend's facebook pics, Deborah had painted Chris and Fran's wedding portrait. When you see the picture I think you'll agree she is a most talented woman!

Mmmmmmmm cake...... The beautiful Amy D from CC Cakes will be creating our special cake. CC Cakes have been supplying wedding cakes to the Royal Family since 1963 and I have sampled Amy's talents at many a Queen/ Crilly event so I know we are in good hands.

Other suppliers to date are the ever dependable Vista Print for the stationary and signage, Marshall Ward who supplied the Teatro bridesmaid dresses and Debenhams designers for the flower girls dresses (although I got them from ebay!!)

The Crazy Hog have been super efficient dealing with my enquiry right from the initial email putting feelers out. They are supplying a hog roast for wedding breakfast, ‘yum yum pigs bum’, and back, and belly.

The exact chairs I was looking for were available for hire. The chairs are for the blessing and general seating, these have been ordered with Dale Event Hire.

Ring, let's not forget the ring, I found my wedding ring at Green & Benz in Manchester, I am not a fan of fussy jewelry but wanted something other than the standard band, the selection here is great.

And finally as mentioned in a previous post, there are more ideas and lovely things to fawn over at

There will be much more to come in the forthcoming weeks. I plan to have it nailed by the end of May so I can spend June concentrating on my bridal beauty regime with the help of beauty therapist and good friend Claire Gill at Kaya in Ramsbottom Tel: 01706 825009, the wonderful half woman half machine Stacey Elder who will be whipping me into shape.

Next on the agenda, portable gas ovens for heating the evening bounty and cutting cloth triangles for the bunting, at 700ft long, this is going to take some time.

Clare x

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Weight Watchers, Make-a-Wish Charity Evening at the Rovers Return and beckoning summer!

Week one of the Easter holiday draws to an end, but no Sunday night blues, as there is another week to go. Sorry to brag but after 16 years of the rat race, I’m still yet to get over the novelty of working term time only.

A few exciting this to share with you:

Cake Action at the Rovers

I have been invited to put my cake making skills to good use for a charity evening in aid of the Make a Wish Foundation.

Friends from 3sixtymedia, Susanna Rowlands and Matt Carruthers (pictured left), are scaling the heights of Kilimanjaro January 2011. I’ll keep you updated with training progress and why they have chosen to undertake this daring feat, but in the meantime can invite you to the aforementioned charity evening. The Rovers Return replica bar at Granada TV, Manchester is the venue for the evening, 22nd April; tickets are available for £5, email

I’ll get more detailed information posted this week.

Weighing Bananas – to skin or not to skin

Okay I know it may sound odd, but I have a weighing dilemma. This will probably mean nothing to you unless you are a Weight Watcher (or fellow Fat Club Member as I like to call us), and non-dieters may wish to skip to the next section, who actually weighs the banana with the skin on?!

16 years ago (ouch!) I was told by my first ever leader, to weigh with skin on, however the points tracker has a medium banana at 100g.... if you can really find a medium sized banana that weighs 100g with the skin on you are a better hunter than I!

Last week I selected a medium (as I honestly believe it to be as it wasn't small and there were much larger ones available) left the skin on and cut it in half, that was still 104g.

To be honest I have been giving them the wide berth, as you do not get enough return for your points. But at desperation point I have been over cautious and weighing with the skin on, and resenting them greatly!

I will check with my leader when I get back off holiday next weds and update with the official 2010 approach!

Little People - Entertaining but exhausting

I love my sister Lucy’s children inside out and back to front, she has two girls, Jessica 9, Emily 6 and a son Callum who is 3 but looks about 5! The girls have stayed with me on a number of occasions, usually with the aid of my other sister Sophie, or my fiancĂ© Rob. This week however Callum was joining his big sisters for the first time.

Thursday, we visited Reddish Vale Farm in Stockport. I would thoroughly recommend it. The farm is open to the public Apr-Oct, at a fairly priced entrance fee, children over 3 years £2 and £3 for adults. We were greeted by friendly staff and went straight to the nursery section where we were able to pet 3 week old lambs, chicks, ducklings and baby bunnies, all available for purchase… so we need name suggestions for a grey and white bunny!

Other facilities are bouncy castles, climbing frame and a toy tractor zone that is very similar to bumper cars. There is a good-sized coffee shop with indoor and outdoor seating, although we only grabbed an ice cream on the way out to have on the drive home.

Over the two days, we visited 3 play parks, a Crown Carvery (great value for a family approx £3.59 a head) and two other centers. The first for Friday was Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary in Rossendale; they only ask for a mere 20p donation for parking, so please spend some money in the gift shop, they deserve every penny you can spare. We had a wander round cooing at the numerous cats, dogs, rabbits, donkeys and horses, but you can book dog walking sessions, the surrounding countryside is a perfect setting for a stroll with a rescued pooch.

Next on the schedule was one last stop on the journey back home, a place I have been a few times for lessons and have been waiting for an opportunity to drag the kids along. I am talking snow play on a sunny day, the Chill Factore at the Trafford Centre. £6 for 30 mins snow play may not sound too unreasonable, but when there are 3 kids to pay for, it soon mounts up. Children must be supervised, but here is where Chill Factore redeem themselves, it is only £1 for the accompanying adult, something other venues could learn from. Half an hour was just enough time as little Callum was freezing and I was developing a rather sensitive head. We ditched the snow boots with good intentions of warming our bodies with hot chocolate, at least until we got to Fredericks Ice Cream parlor en-route to the coffee shop. Heaven in a tub.

We hit rush hour on the return to Hazel Grove, it was 1800 by the time I got home, and the headache had developed into a migraine during the 2-hour drive. I was overjoyed then to find Rob watching TV from our bed. I dropped a couple of Anadin and climbed into bed with that combination of hunger and nausea that accompanies the start of a migraine. 3 hours later I awoke, groggy, but no headache, starving with no intention of leaving the bed…. Hello Zaidys?….. Chicken kebab and garlic bread in bed, how decadent?

And finally, summer is officially here in Stubbins

It is officially summer when I can sit on my bench at the front of our house. Yesterday morning I enjoyed a cup of tea and a nice chat with neighbour John. Last night we had vintage cava and G&T’s on the bench, oh yes, summer has arrived, and long may it last.

Clare x

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Wedding Accessories

My new subscription of Vogue landed on my doormat yesterday, and in that, the answers to my bridal lingerie choice.

A full page advert for Myla London. The Meredith balcony bra, waspie and mini, gorgeous. The order is being placed once I am fully measured, although I am rather upset that the stockings shown in the photograph are not actually available from Myla, they must have been a provided by the stylist. The stockings appear to be champagne/ nude sheer leg with a very deep smooth satin top. I found a similar pair by Charnos, after 2 hours of trawling google images, but the satin welt doesn’t seem deep enough. I ordered them just in case, but feel this may be the start of another obsessive investigation. I emailed Myla to kick start the enquiries, fingers crossed!

More on accessories, I found a fascinator last week at Boundary Mill, ivory and guinea fowl feathers. I snapped it up with Mummy’s approval. Never one for the traditional style veil, I have always loved the small birdcage veil hats that you see in old movies. These bird cage veils are seem to be rather popular with brides, so I am considering the addition of a white/ ivory one for the walk up the aisle.

For the bridesmaids and usherettes I am thinking, fans, parasols and wrist corsages, not all at once, one or the other. The junior bridesmaids are in white, they would look rather cute with green parasols. The senior bridesmaids are in green, the maid and matron of honour are in a colour of their own choice, so the white paper fans would look pretty, and would serve purpose should the weather predictions hold true. And lastly my usherettes are choosing their own style of white dresses, should each wear matching wrist corsages, that would offer some continuity. I stumbled across a collection of delightful handmade silk corsages and button holes (pictured) from Emerson Made whilst browsing for birdcage ideas on Wedding Obsession Blog, definitely food for thought.

Clare xx