Thursday the 10th of January 2013 took me on my Annual pilgrimage down to London Town.
I was primarily in town to attend the Wedding Ideas Awards but I also had a few meetings sprinkled in too, as well as some relaxing time with my husband Neill.
We took a lovely train ride down the East Coast before checking into our initial Hotel, not much countryside was seen due to the thick fog that covered the country that day.
The rest of Thursday was taken up with a wee bit of sightseeing, and a trip to Westfield near the Olympic Park…that place is massive.
On Friday morning we had lovely breakfast before my meeting with the Wedding Co-ordinator of the Tower Hotel which was to be where we laid our weary heads for the next two nights.
They have some great options for Weddings and Events, which will be detailed in a further Blog feature.
Following this I had a lovely lunch with my husband, before returning to the hotel to get glammed up for my big night out.
After a wee rest to appreciate my outstanding view, and to catch up on Social Media I had a leisurely afternoon of pamper before getting my make up done by the fabulous Emily Cusens.
She really is a gem and I would recommend her highly.
Then it was downstairs and a short walk to the Tower Suite to meet up with everyone and indulge in a fantastic drinks reception.
My Gown this year was by Debut at Debenhams with wrap by Marks and Spencers, and hairband and jewellery by LHG Designs.
I don’t think you can ever prepare yourself for how immense and overwhelming the Awards experience is.
You can picture it in your head, or from awards you have seen on the TV, but until you are actually there, you can’t actually comprehend the massiveness of it all.
I was lucky enough to be seated beside the wonderful Emma of Military Wedding Discounts and her aunt Kathleen, and Bride of the Year Naomi Thomas, and her husband, amongst others.
As it turned out the lovely Emma was an angel in disguise as I choked on my steak at dinner and she performed the heimlich maneouvre and practically saved my life.
After some lovely cheesecake that I suitably recovered to enjoy it was the glittering Awards ceremony.
This year I was incredibly honoured to be asked to be a Judge at the Awards.
Very tough decisions had to be made as our Industry is jam packed with fabulous and talented suppliers.
But my Judging had already been done and the night was about all about some very talented people.
And so to the Winners –
Best Wedding Stationery – Ivy Ellen
Best UK Wedding Venue – St Audries Park
Best Provider of Weddings and Honeymoons Abroad – Thomson
Best Photographer – Chris Barber
Best Gift List Service – John Lewis
Best Special Touches – Giddy Kipper
Best Newcomer – Diane Harbridge
Best Bridal Accessories – Flo and Percy
Best Bridal Shoes – Rainbow Club
Best Bridal Retailer – Creatiques
Best Groomswear Collection – Cameron Ross
Best Bridesmaid Collection – Two Birds Bridesmaid
Best Plus Size Dress Collection – Sonsie
Best Dress Manufacturer – Maggie Sottero
Best Dress Designer – Sassi Holford
Bride of the Year – Naomi Thomas – Wishing Well Foundation
I would like to offer my warmest Congratulations to each and every shortlisted nominee, and of course to the Winners.
As with the previous year it was a great networking opportunity for me as well as a chance to really unwind, but this year I was good and didn’t have that “weary look” or the hangover that many of my fellow partygoers woke up on Saturday morning with.
On Saturday morning I had my annual cuppa with Sangeeta of Olivier Laudus. Its great to be able to catch up.
The rest of the weekend was spent relaxing whilst having some cultural time at the V and A Museum on Saturday before a trip to Harrods.
On Sunday we enjoyed a wander around the fabulous Spitalfields Market before a wee look at the really interesting Museum of London.
Our trip was rounded off by a whistlestop gander around Liberty before a lovely tea at the Stockpot in Soho, I really recommend it, and then the plane home to Glasgow.
As always myself and my husband love our time away despite missing our kids.
London is like some magical bubble that you really like going to, and everything and even me feels a wee bit more glam there.
But reality prevails and today its back to being me….until next year!