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Our Top 20 High Street Bridal Dresses for under £700

4 May

6f Good morning, gorgeous people!

I have been so excited to share today’s post with, I can’t even begin! Today, we’re sharing our favourite twenty bridal dresses (and jumpsuits!) for under £700. Why am I so excited about this post? Well, my own wedding dress was from a high street store and cost just £30, so I guess something about this resonates with me!

Of course, every bride is different, for some the most important part is their gown, so a significant part of the budget is dedicated to that cause, and man alive do we get that! But for others, either the overall budget won’t allow, or, when it comes down to it (and this was totally me!) having the woodland venue of your dreams far exceeded the importance of the dress!

Whatever your reason for wanting to spend a little less on the dress, there’s no reason to believe that you can’t still look like a million dollars in your bridal outfit; people fell over when I told them where my gown was from and how little it cost! So whether your budget’s £50 or £699, we’ve got some incredible pieces to share with you today from across the globe!

Are you ready to have your mind blown?! As always, click the images to shop the dresses!

One: The Zara – £49.99

Our most budget friendly option by far, this Zara gown is all kinds of gorgeous!

(Side note: I may be a little biased, as my wedding dress was also from Zara!)

But with that delicate crochet trim, the ‘cold shoulder’ neckline and the relaxed, buttoned length of the dress, it ticks a whole load of 2016 trend boxes and is perfect for the laid-back festival bride!

At just under £50, there’ll be plenty of budget left to add a slip underneath and have the dress fitted to you perfectly too! Just take the gown along to a recommended seamstress who’s accustomed to working with wedding gowns and have a clear picture of how you’d like it to look: the fullness of the skirt, the fit at the waist etc.

I had an amazing seamstress work on my £30 gown, adding an extra layer of silk fabric under the skirt to reduce the sheerness and adjusting the bust so it fitted my more petite frame perfectly. For just an extra £70, her changes really made it feel like a wedding gown… I’d highly recommend!

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Two: The Ivy Mountain – £210

We’ve been long-time lovers of American boho brand, Jen’s Pirate Booty, so when we discovered that the wonderful ASOS were stocking this GORGEOUS Ivy Mountain gown, we had to share it with you!

Designer Jen Rossi channels her Malibu roots into her free-spirited, bohemian line, the result is a Venice beach-ready collection, carefully crafted from local textiles and artisan techniques; heavy on the crochet and oh-so easy on the eye!

We love the Ivy Mountain’s chilled out boat neckline paired with its low v-cut back. Its drop waist and elegantly slim cut lined skirt makes this the perfect choice for carefree boho bride.

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Three: The Waterfall Jumpsuit – £120

Oh ASOS, you never fail to wow us!

The online favourite brand released their first bridal line in 2015 and, good LAWD, were we impressed! Designer, Vanessa Spence, says of the line: 

Our designers have trawled vintage archives to find a bridal outfit for every customer type and considered the different types of weddings. The ASOS bridal collection offers traditional dresses, but also more alternative pieces like the caped jumpsuit and separates… Perfect for the modern bride. We were inspired by our customer, which is the same approach we take with everything we do. We considered the different girls from glam bride, debutante bride, beach bride, Vegas bride… To make her feel her very best on her wedding day.

…Girl, you cannot afford to miss out on these pieces, and a little birdy told me that their new bridal line for 2016 is very much on the horizon, so be sure to keep your ear to the ground for that!

We adore the plunge neckline and angel sleeves of this super wide-leg bridal jumpsuit. It’s ethereal, while remaining modern… We love that!

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Four: The Delicate Lace + Pearl – £250

And just incase that wasn’t enough goodness from ASOS, we’ve included one more of their incredible own-brand bridal gowns.

Delicate mesh with a vintage-inspired design and faux-pearl detailing make this sweet gown a beautiful choice, especially for such an affordable price!

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Five: The Boho Bella – £156

Y’all might already know this, but here at FBrides we are all kinds of in love with Australian brand, Spell and the Gypsy Collective.

Their editorials? I die!

Now, Spell do of course have a bridal specific line, but if that’s a little out of reach budget-wise their wealth of gorgeous white dresses make the perfect alternatives!

The Boho Bella is a striking backless springtime luxe lace dress, featuring gently frilled shoulders for a little extra statement. The perfect garden party dress with its sweet casual pockets, it will take you seamlessly into the evening.

Think Woodstock at its best.

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Six: The Isla Bonita – £151

Another divine piece from Spell, the Isla Bonita is hands down the only dress you need to consider if you’re having a beach wedding, and at that price? Are you kiddin!? You could have two and get one drenched in a stunning photoshoot in the sea!

A gorgeous white sun dress with intricate, vintage inspired embroidered detailing, the Isla Bonita features a raised hem at the front and cascading rear. 

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Seven: The Canyon Moon Duster – £182

And our last piece from Spell (it took A LOT of restraint to say that! #thestruggleisreal) the Canyon Moon isn’t strictly a dress in it’s own right, but this wildly romantic duster that can sit on it’s own as a vintage inspired ‘wedding night’ peignoir (wear it over bridal intimates on your wedding night) or be worn as a duster over your wedding gown once the ambience of your evening sets in. The duster is made from a vintage inspired mesh-lace that is original to Spell.

The elegantly versatile duster can be tied under the bust to create a plunging deep V neckline (a striking dress in own right!), or worn open over any creamy white lace skirt to complete an elegant and modern bohemian bride look.

Currently this piece is out of stock (yes, it’s that good!) but more stock is due to land in mid-late May 2016, so hold tight!

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Oh and just another little FYI, if you’re in no particular rush to buy your dress, Spell have been dropping some insanely gorgeous hints about their new 2016 bridal line via their instagram recently, so keep your eyes on their feed this month!

Because this gown, I mean…

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Eight: The Enchanted Forest – £288

As with Spell, the ever-wonderful Free People have an incredible bride-specific line, but so many of their fashion collection dresses would make incredible wedding gowns also, should you need a more affordable alternative! 

This ethereal maxi dress was MADE for enchanted evenings. We are totally besotted with it!

In a beautiful sheer chiffon, the Enchanted Forest features floral appliqué detailing, bead accents and a super femme ruffle hem. A square neckline, statement sleeves and a low back with delicate button closures make it a show-stopping piece, totally bride-worthy!

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Nine: The Gianna – £228

Another killer piece from Free People, you’re sure to steal the scene in the beautiful (and kinda badass!) Gianna dress.

A floral lace bodice, with a delicate–while-striking scalloped hem and V-neckline, the Gianna is for the bold bride, or would make a totally bomb change for evening reception paired with un-done hair and minimal makeup.

Sexy. A. F.

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Ten: The Octavia – £450

Our final piece from Free People just SCREAMS Coachella (see more wedding inpsiration from ‘chella 2016 here!).

Made in LA, this romantic gown features a feminine V-neckline, button-down silhouette, and sheer lace inserts throughout…

We are all kinds of obsessed.

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Eleven: The Carmine Maxi – £223

So, it’s my pleasure to introduce you to this gown (assuming it hasn’t already rocked your world, of course!), this is For Love and Lemon’s new Carmine Maxi and it has completed our lives. Period. 

The brand describe it:

Infatuation comes easy with its smooth rayon crepe fabric and crochet lace. The nude tulle paneling and darling buttons down the centre front makes this dress impossible to not fall in love with.

…And we couldn’t agree more!

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Twelve: The Carmine Mini – £201

And just in case budget will allow for both, why not pick up the equally stunning Carmine Mini from For Love and Lemons while you’re there too?! It’d made the perfect change for an evening of dancing, while maintaining a fluidity and sense of unity with your ceremony gown. 

As the designers put it:

The Carmine Mini Dress makes it a breeze to unapologetically shine with a plunging neckline and carefully designed crochet trimming. Style with your favourite choker for a chic, yet sassy you.

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Thirteen: The Lace Separates – £370

WELL. When British brand, Needle and Thread, released their 2015 bridal collection, we swooned hard, so when they pre-released images of their super affordable, hella gorgeous ’16 line, you better believe we were on board!

Available this month, our favourite ensemble, totalling at just £370, is their Victorian lace top (£200) and lace tulle skirt (£170).

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Fourteen: The Deconstructed Lace – £650

…Of course, you knew I wouldn’t be able to resist sharing more of Needle and Thread’s new collection with you, right?!

One of our higher priced gowns, but worth every. single. penny. We can’t help but envisage their deconstructed lace gown floating elegantly through a meadow and into a beautiful woodland on a summer’s day…

Dreamy.

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Fifteen: The Jersey + Floral Ensemble – £565

…And because I just couldn’t help myself, here’s our final pick from Needle and Thread’s soon-to-launch 2016 bridal line.

Their stunning iridescent floral maxi skirt (£450) paired with their heritage jersey top (£115), to created a unique and painfully cool bridal separates look. 

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Sixteen: The Eva – £650

Edgy London label, Self Portrait, released their debut bridal collection just recently and boy they did not disappoint. Progressive while super pretty, the brand’s founder, Han Chong, was inspired by the rock’n’roll styles of Bianca Jagger and Pattie Boyd, who challenged conventional dress codes:

The pieces in my bridal debut are not your typical gowns – they were created for the untraditional bride.

…Sounds like something we can definitely get one board with! Chong continues:

I felt there was a gap in the market for cool, understated gowns that still had the ability to feel feminine and timeless.

So let’s kick things off with the Eva: this floor length wedding gown has an open back and a silk skirt that cascades into a modest train. The sleeves and back bodice in a geometric guipure are unlined, giving an element of transparency, while the waist is accentuated with a wide waistband panel.

Hearts. For. Eyes.

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Seventeen: The Pleated Skirt – £650

Continuing with the astoundingly gorgeous bridal gowns of Self Portrait, this long sleeved full length wedding gown with pleated skirt and organza pussybow detail is just incredible.

The bodice is in a daisy guipure lace, fitted to the waist with a silk grosgrain ribbon, and the pleated skirt gives a slim, long line which cascades down to a subtle train. 

We are just head over heels for the beautiful motion of that pleated skirt. So original.

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Eighteen: The Bardot – £500

And finally from Self Portrait, if names are anything to go by, this one’s SURELY a winner… 

The lace trimmed Bardot dress has a divine draped, trapeze silhouette. Featuring a dropped shoulder with a wide lace trim at the neckline (which we ADORE), with the main dress draped with a light gather from this seam, it’s easy-going elegance personified.

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Nineteen: The Francesca + Capelet – £450

Ok, so I’ll make no secret of this: we are OBSESSED with US brand, Reformation.

They believe in fashion-forward style, amazing quality and, above all else, responsibly sourced, sustainably created garments. 

Who doesn’t want a slice of that?!  

We love this pairing from their bridal collection, the Francesca gown (£335) described as:

If you’re not really the marrying type but have found yourself in a “wedding situation”, the Francesca Dress can help. This is a floor length wrap dress with a v neckline.

…Paired with their sweet capelet (£115) to create a truly stunning layered ensemble for an awesome price!

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Twenty: The Romanica – £294

And finally, I chose this last dress from Reformation, for many of the same reasons that I chose the first; to inspire you to think outside of the ‘bridal wear’ box a little and encourage you to be bold when choosing your wedding outfit.

The striking Romanica gown is actually a bridesmaid’s dress.

I know right!? Shock. Horror.

But really, who the hell is to say that this wouldn’t make the most awesome statement bridal gown!?

We love the two tone wrap design, and for the bride who’s failing to choose between a coloured gown or the conventional white, it ticks both boxes.

We love.

9d So, brides-to-be!

Whether you read this post ’cause you’ve found yourself in a bit of a pinch when it comes to dress budget, or whether you simply don’t want to invest thousands in your bridal gown, I hope we’ve captured your imagination and given you the courage to see the potential for bridal gorgeousness in some more unlikely places!

Do drop us a comment below if you’ve bought a high street gown, we’d love to hear where you found ‘The One’!

Peace + Love

Clare XO

10 Ways to Make Life Lovely – The Bank Holiday One

29 Apr

TITLE Good morning, you guys, and happy Friday!

We’re kickin’ off today with a whole host of awesome little ways to make this bank holiday weekend a good one! From Queen B’s new visual album, to our favourite new snack box, delivered right to your door and filled with wholesome, healthy goodies!  We’re shopping for summer swimwear you’ll actually look forward to wearing and seeking out British beaches so good, you’d swear you were abroad!

But first, let’s chat beauty (you didn’t think I could get through a post without mentioning makeup, did yah?!) and let’s talk conscious beauty…

One: Cruelty Free Beauty

We all love a bit of beauty, or in my case a whole LOAD of beauty, right?!

But do we ever consider what these products are actually made of? Or how they’re tested?

Well my friends, I gotta tell ya’ Cruelty Free is the new black and it’s never been cooler to be a conscious consumer, so when I stumbled upon awesome beauty blogger, Cruelty Free Kitty, I may have let out a little squeal of joy!

If you’re looking to completely cleanse your makeup collection of all products tested on animals, then check out her incredible (and pretty thorough!) Ultimate Guide, which also identifies specifically vegan products within each cruelty free brand. It’s been my bed time reading (no joke!) for the past week; totally awesome!

Or you could check out her Favourite Cruelty Free Products of 2015, which includes brilliant cruelty free brands such as Becca Cosmetics (oh hey, best highlighter on the market!), the always awesome Too Faced cosmetics (their Better Than Sex mascara, I die!) and of course Milani (remember that cult fave blusher I mentioned back in Feb?)

Gorgeous makeup. No cruelty. It’s simple!

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Two: We are the Berliebers

Yup, Berliebers.

(Can’t believe I just wrote that)

We’re talking Berber rugs!

Both Laura and I are next-level addicted to these traditionally hand-woven rugs, crafted by the Berber people of North Africa.

They’re understated and wonderfully flexible in their design, making them the perfect choice for your lounge / bedroom / office… Well, just about anywhere, really!

We have been LUH-VING this one by Rockett St George, and this one by Mink Interiors.

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Three: Beach, PLEASE

Who knew that Britain had such wonderful beaches?

I mean, look at the photo below…

…I’m sorry did someone fly me to Greece while I was sleeping?! Oh no, that’d be Scotland. SCOTLAND!

Achmelvich, in Wester Ross on the west coast of Scotland, to be precise! (I see you frantically Googling ‘beach that looks like Greece in Scotland’!)

Check out these lists by The Telegraph and Buzz Feed and get yo’ booty down to those UK sands this bank holiday!

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Four: The Earlybird

Guys. The love I feel for this brand is REAL.

It’s healthy snackin’ like you’ve never seen before; meet Earlybird Snacks.

For a mere £4.95 per box, you get a whole host of individually packaged, nutritionally rich and ridiculously convenient snacks (including a cute little flavoured teabag!) delivered to your front door every week!

Totally customisable to your dietary preferences and you can give feedback on each snack to shape your future box choices, we are head over heels for Earlybird.

Oh, and FYI, their Flat Pack Brownie snack? Heaven. Sheer, unadulterated HEAVEN.

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Five: Hey good lookin’

…Whaaaaatcha got cookin’?

Well, this month, it’s been mainly from the Hemsley + Hemsley cook book!

I was gifted this gorgeous, wholesome recipe book and I gotta tell yah, my beau and I have been pretty darn impressed.

This girl power sister duo are taking the food industry by storm, describing themselves as:

‘…home cooks and food lovers with a passion for wellness and delicious, nutrient-dense food. Our cooking is all about creating natural, satisfying and easy to digest meals that make you feel vibrant, strong and healthy; recipes that are full of flavour and goodness and free from gluten, grains and refined sugar. We believe in the nourishing power of real food and that eating well can be easy, affordable and enjoyable for everyone.’

On point right? ENJOY!

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Six: #barcelonabridalweek

As a bridal-fashion-obsessed wedding blogger, what do you do when your schedule just won’t allow for that trip to Barcelona’s Bridal Fashion Week?

You stalk the internet. Like a hawk!

If you’re looking for boundary-pushing, astoundingly beautiful bridal wear inspiration, get yourself on Instagram and get stalking the #barcelonabridalweek hashtag… I promise you won’t be disappointed!

With incredible designers like Yolan Cris (one of our FAVES) and the ever-incredible Naeem Khan stealing the show, if you don’t do anything else this weekend (no judgement, I plan on being a lazy-ass too!) make sure you check this out!

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Seven: Holiday Ready

…Because it may not be anywhere near warm enough yet here in the UK, but a girl’s gotta be sunshine ready at the drop of a hat when the weather does decide to turn!

Or, hey, you might be lucky enough to be heading abroad sometime soon! *mutters envious thoughts to self*

There is an abundance of gorgeous swimwear hitting the stores this season, fits for every shape and size, designs for every taste and prices for every budget.

Here’s some of our faves (click to shop!)

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Eight: Take me to the Treetops

So, I don’t know about you, but my beau and I are pretty big woodland fans. We got married in one, we love walking our hound through them and we’re lucky enough to be heading back to the gorgeous woodland setting of Cosy Under Canvas this month (remember that Minimoon blog post I wrote, swooning over them?).

And it got me to thinking about other woodland experiences we’d love and, on my internet travels, I stumbled upon this…

8b …I mean. WOW.

Right?! This incredible treehouse is an Airbnb listing in Atlanta, USA, and boy do we wanna visit! Can you imagine waking up to that tree top view?

Surely this is the stuff that dreams are made on?

And just incase you’ve fallen in love but can’t quite make it to the US this year, check out these UK listings at Canopies and Stars.

We’re in love!

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Nine: Now watching/listening/worshipping

That’s right. It’s all we’ve listened to this week.

Because, QUEEN.

Just in case you’ve had your head under a rock this week, Beyoncé surprise-released her 6th album last Saturday. Taking the form of a succession of astounding music videos, linked by poetry by Somali-British poet, Warsan Shire, the album includes collaborations with Jack White, Diplo, James Blake, Kendrick Lamar and the Weeknd and eclectically moves into rock, country and jazz in places.

With lyrics like “women don’t quit on themselves” the album has a strong Feminist undercurrent, and demonstrates Bey’s increasing desire to express her political views.

In a world where a lot of popular music isn’t really saying a lot, Lemonade is hugely inspiring (and just all kinds of badass!).

You can get the album, complete with the hour long film on iTunes now, or you can listen to the album for free on Annie Mac’s Lemonade Listening Party.

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Ten: Becca’s Cult Primer

And finally. Spring is for dewy skin.

It’s for that no-makeup makeup look. For that ‘glowing from within’ vibe.

And our current favourite (cruelty-free and vegan, of course) product for achieving such a fresh look?

Becca Cosmetic’s Backlight Priming Filter.

Suitable for all skin types, you can apply this primer under foundation, as a stand alone product to enhance your skin’s natural glow, or mix up a little cocktail: a pump of this with your normal pump of foundation on the back of your hand before applying for a super-quick dewy fix.

Let’s hear how it works from the masters themselves:

Ultra-subtle, ‘soft focus’ pigments blur the visibility of imperfections – refracting and diffusing light to lend skin a flawless, lit-from-within look – like somebody inside your head just switched a lamp on (and who doesn’t want that?). With a featherweight texture, this melts into skin – blending seamlessly to create an enviably smooth and dewy canvas – while antioxidant vitamin E and tightening liquorice extract combine to brighten, firm and ward against free radical-attack. The ultimate first step in your make up ritual, this is essentially a photographic filter in a bottle.

…And no-one got harmed in the making of it! We are ride-or-die for this gorgeous product.

Becca, you’re ticking all our boxes!

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10c Go ahead and treat yo’self this bank holiday! You’ve certainly worked hard enough for it!

Whether it’s shopping for a new badass swimsuit for that upcoming trip, or a going on a little beauty splurge, or maybe just a little free ear candy courtesy of Annie Mac, however you enjoy your long weekend, have a good one y’all and we’ll see you on the flip side!

Peace + Love

Clare XO

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