Blogger and creative consultant, Peony Lim, helped us to create our timeless bridal look on the day of our film shoot to inspire the classic wedding that transcends the trends of fashion.
An all-round fashion, beauty, food and travel blogger for the last 10 years, Peony began her successful and renowned career when the likes of iPhones and Instagram were but a mere apple in their creator’s eyes.
Comfortably settling into sharing her personal thoughts, the charm of Peony’s blog and Instagram page lie in the fact she shares her own experiences and tastes on a variety of luxury lifestyle subjects, not those of others.
We caught up with the regular international fashion week attendee about how she found her look and how to style your very own wedding.
So let’s begin with talking about your look. Your Instagram is quite distinctive, how did you come to find your signature style?
I became successful because I went to university in the same building as where the British Fashion Council hosted fashion week, and it was the beginning of street style and the photographers who were big at the time used to shoot me as a student outside classes just because I was there and they liked what I wore. I always had a strong interest in fashion. I always wore unusual things even though I was just a student. And so I never really had to think about it, it was just what naturally interested me and what I naturally loved. I loved classic tailoring, I loved timeless pieces, and I loved quality that lasted. I wore a lot of vintage from my Mum’s own wardrobe that had lasted 20 years.
So did that influence everything about your wedding, from the dress and the jewellery even to where you got married?
I really think it did actually. It influenced my make up, I did a lot of tests to make sure it didn’t adhere to any fads or products. I just wanted to look like the best version of me and not anything that would become dated or anything that was a phase of beauty that I was going through. With jewellery it was the same, my jewellery was all antique and built around family pieces. The dress definitely had references, I had multiple dresses I was very lucky, so I could live out all my bridal dreams in different moments and I think it was very much having something I would always love. For me, it was really about what was the perfect fit and wanting people to see me as a whole, not just the dress.
What are your top tips for brides to keep their sense of style even on their wedding day?
I think people have a lot of opinions when you go dress shopping and even the same with jewellery brands; they’ll say “oh no that doesn’t quite suit you”. Normally none of these people offering negative opinions are going to exist in your life after this one moment so their opinion genuinely doesn’t matter. And without being rude, you can say to people “thank you so much, I will let you know if I need help” because that’s not what you went there for. So I would say definitely consider very carefully who you take with you to fittings and who you take with you to choose jewellery and who you take with you to try cake, because it should only be someone who’s opinion actually matters. The only opinions that mattered to me were my Mum, my husband, and my father – bless him, he’s an absolute superstar and just went with what I wanted
So you have styled our timeless bride. What kind of top tips would you have for someone who wants to get this look?
I was so excited to choose the timeless bride because for me that was absolutely what I went for. If you want that aesthetic, it’s all about looking at references through the ages that haven’t dated. Look at influential women from the past to today, everyone from brides such as Grace Kelly, Kate Middleton, and Caroline Bessette. Go through all of those women, choose their best pictures and say what about this has lasted? What about this still looks stunning? 9 times out of 10 it’s because they look beautiful and it’s not any of the accessories, it’s not the wedding dress, it’s not. It’s because they look amazing and what you see is them. So if you want to look timeless, don’t choose things because you think they’re really beautiful, choose things because they make you beautiful.
That’s very good advice.
From a jewellery perspective, what recommendations would you give to a timeless bride?
Your wedding jewellery is one of the biggest commitments in terms of your whole wedding experience because your photographer, your videographer and your jewellery are really the only things that last. They’re the things you’ll have to live with on the mantelpiece or on your body for the rest of your life so it is a big pressure and a big investment financially for what you choose because you do have to wear it for a long time.
It’s important to choose something quite simple, something more unexciting because it will layer well and wear well with everything that the next few decades of your life will offer you. You’re going to change your style, new pieces will come into your collection, and pieces will leave but your wedding ring wont. So choose something that will always look good, with any watch, with any ring next to it, because you won’t be able to swap it. The thing that looks beautiful is not the embellishment, it’s you.
Although we have just slightly touched on this, who would you say is the ultimate timeless bride icon?
Have you seen the movie Audrey Hepburn’s “Funny Face”? There is a bridal scene in that where she wears a beautiful three quarter length dress and it’s very much of that time but there is also a scene where she is wearing a beautiful strapless Givenchy dress and, to me, it’s that white dress with the embellishment in a beautiful series of images of her arguing with Fred Astaire that fully portrays her personality. So if you’re looking for a timeless gown reference, watch that film, or even Sabrina as that has another great dress moment.
Did you follow the famous saying “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue” on your wedding day and how can a timeless bride create this?
I did follow that tradition. I think I loved the idea of getting multiple things within one piece so something that’s borrowed and blue, that kind of thing. I think in terms of jewellery it can be really wonderful to wear something that belongs to your mother or your grandmother or his mother or grandmother, and have that sense of history in the piece as well. So I wore something that was my father’s mothers and something that was my mother’s as well, so they were both borrowed and one of them was blue. I also know people who had one stone changed in their wedding band to be blue, so it was all diamonds and one sapphire. There are always ways to personalise things and make things unique to you.
Interesting question, did you gift your husband on your wedding day?
Yes I did actually, I did. On the day of the wedding, we had a rehearsal dinner as we had a three day wedding, and the day before I gave his best man his gift. A lot of people give it to them in person but I wanted it to be something that he received away from me, and came with on the day if that makes sense? He sent me a gift as well so we both received them the morning of the wedding and opened them privately. It was really special.
And the final question, what advice would you give to a bride-to-be?
There’s two pieces of advice I was given on the lead up to my wedding that I’m so grateful people gave to me, because I definitely wouldn’t have done them without being told, and they made such a huge difference on the day.
The first was a wonderful production company I worked with that was run by a lesbian couple and on their wedding day she said they made a point of having 5-10 minutes where they left the venue together to take stock of the day as a couple. My husband and I walked away from the crowd of people coming up to us and said “we’ll be back in 5 minutes”. You don’t need to justify yourself, it’s your day. I remember that moment so clearly as just us.
And the second piece of advice was from my wedding planner who told me how upset her mother was that that they hadn’t had a private moment together before she walked down the aisle. Your mum is already in the church so you don’t say goodbye to her as a single woman, you’re with your father the whole time and then the next time you see your mum your married and that’s it. So I made a real point of alone together for 5 minutes before the wedding service started, then she left and I left with my father. So we had our moment, the same way you kiss your father goodbye at the altar, I got to kiss her goodbye in the bedroom and I think it’s a very personal thing. I think it was as important for her as it was for me.
Special thanks must go to the world class team of contributers who helped us to create our vintage, modern and bridal themes.
Peony Lim for styling our timeless look: – http://peonylim.com/
Isla and Smith who styled the shoot – http://islaandsmith.com
Eternity Bridal who supplied the dresses – https://www.eternitybridal.co.uk
Laura Kingston flowers – https://www.laurahingstonflowers.com
Pyne’s House – https://www.pyneshouse.co.uk
Crombie for the men’s suits – https://www.crombie.co.uk/suits.html
Vivienne Edge Photography – https://www.vivienneedgephotography.co.uk