My 2019 round up...
Updated: Jan 5
Its been quite a year, but, and this is definitely an age thing, this year has gone freakishly fast, I mean, ridiculously fast. I feel it was only 6 months ago when I packed away the Christmas decks, and now they are back up again. It can't be just me who feels like they have missed 6 months somehow.
But, its been a good year.
I started 2019, as many do, with a whole new set of good intentions. Like, do more blogs on my site, update it regularly, that sort of thing, but, like all good intentions, distraction prevails. So I will collate most of the year in one blog post.
After a nice relaxing few weeks of January, I went to a writing group with my friend, I guess just to try and improve my writing. I've got there as much as I was able and it has led to other projects.
The rest of January was spent doing trials, a few studio shoots, many Home education sessions and the great Home Ed panto at East Durham College.
This was a quieter month, so I got on with a few writing projects and tried to get fit, but battled with a touch of flu, but it was mild in comparison to last year's flooring by that virus I still haven't forgotten, instead, Simone Whitehead got the bug instead.
My first wedding of 2019 was Lisa at Le Petite chateau on the 1st March. Lisa had had a trial in 2017 (yes, pretty organised) and on 1st March 2018 - we had that mild Winter thing - you know that freaky snow thing - I forgot its name now (joking). Imagine how relieved she was that the following year on her wedding day, we had brilliant sunshine.
March is full of family birthdays, and Mother's day so there was plenty of family get together's and cake making (and eating).
More makeup trials and two more weddings to finish March off.
Had my first visit to Bongo Bingo's, it was really...different, let's just say, up and down on bench's between number's called was a bit manic and dangerous with heeled shoes. Only one winner of a bottle of chocolate liqueur for our group, but a really good night.
I had quite a few trials in April and a visit to Woodhill Hall with Simone Whitehead bridal hair for the beautiful Dani big day. I do love Woodhill Hall in Otterburn, it's just over the bridge behind Otterburn Mill. A lovely house with outstanding views and always has something new every time we visit. https://www.woodhillhall.co.uk/
Only one wedding in May and that was for Phillipa at South Causey Inn, but it freed up my Saturdays with family visiting and the opportunity to attend the New writing North conference, which was excellent. The best thing about May was finding out my eldest son had been nominated for a Bafta - young games designer award. He also got nominated last year so we were delighted to find out he had done it again.
June 1st - Simone and I, traveled to The Yorkshire Barn for Donna's big day. Donna had been a bridesmaid for previous bride Karen so it was lovely that she chose us again for her big day. Yorkshire Barn was quite stunning, set in a rural part of Richmond and overlooked a huge lake. I wanted to live there. http://www.yorkshireweddingbarn.co.uk/gallery.html
For the rest of the month, I visited a few long-time clients for nails and waxing (yeh I haven't lost my skill) and managed to get a few trials in. With one more wedding in the month of June for Vicki on the 22nd. Oh, and I went back to slimming world to shed a few pounds.
But then came the big one...the whammy. On the 29th of June, we traveled to London for the Bafta young game designer award. The weather was hot. Over a hundred degrees in London and I'm not the best in the heat. The good news was, my eldest won the 15-18 award for his game WIP, about a character that was created in an unfinished game. It's sad but visually beautiful and was a worthy winner.
July was a nice month, the weather was hot and sometimes unbearable, but we made it through. I had quite a few trials, nails and eyebrows and just the one wedding in July - which is unusual, and that was Claire, at Lumey Castle. Photographer was Nigel Playal (I've done lots of weddings with him over the years). I did Claire's trial earlier in the year, and I made a brilliant impression on her family when I snapped the pulley string on the blinds. Anyway, her day was lovely - just a little rain and the prep took place in another room (the courtyard) I had not been in before (I've been there so many times).
Here are a few pics of her day - love the Camper Van. https://www.nigelplaylephotography.co.uk/
I had trials with Lauren, Lysanne, Rebecca, Megan over the month of August. Some of the trials were for 2020 weddings.
With Megan, she asked for cruelty-free products, so I had to double-check that mine were indeed cruelty-free, with the exception of maybe one or two products that Megan was happy to provide. This was interesting for me, as I assumed that maybe most products were, but as some companies had begun to trade in China, they were now being tested on animals.
Megan was happy with her makeup and everything was written down for her big day in October.
At the end of August, I was back at Lumley for Rachel, this time in the King James suite (been there many times) and it was great to see Karen Mcgowran http://www.karenmcgowranphotography.co.uk/
September for me was a pretty busy month. I had quite a few trials, a few studio shoots, nails, and brows. September 4th - I travelled to Newton Hall to see Natasha and her bridesmaids. Newton Hall is a beautiful venue. The preps take place in the flat just behind the building and looks out on to some stunning views. There's a nice little pub just down the road that we often go to to eat after.
Wednesday 11th September - this was a brilliant day. Simone Whitehead https://www.simonewhiteheadbridalhair.co.uk/weddings travelled to Le Petite chateau https://le-petit-chateau.com/ for the beautiful Helen's big day. But, the best thing was, after we had a good laugh prepping Helen, her mum Elaine and her bridesmaids, we got to be part of Helen's magical day. We were actual guests, and I got to experience the Chateau's charms for myself. I've only been as far as the apartment and the bar, so it was lovely to see the actual ceremony, and Helen looked an absolute dream. I had the best day ever and I felt truly honored that Helen invited me to be part of her special day. Here are just a few pics, I'm still waiting for some, so I will update when I get them.
Saturday 14th September
Not too early for my drive up to the beautiful Ellingham Hall for beautiful bride Amy. It must be about 5 years since I was there last and it had undergone a beautiful makeover. The peacocks were still pecking about on the front driveway but the whole place looked fresh and modern but still with its original features, have a look. https://www.ellingham-hall.co.uk/
And It was great to see Karen Mcgowran photography and Carolyn Clayton for hair. http://www.carolyn-clayton.co.uk/ and also Teri from styled and seated http://styledandseated.co.uk/ The day was beautiful and I loved the newly improved dressing room with its chair.
Saturday September 28th
The sun was blasting for Lauren's big day at the Sunderland Grand Hotel, Seaburn. I've known Lauren for a little while as she is a relative, and has had makeup done a few times for other weddings she was happy for me to turn up without a trial. Her dress was kept secret and no one but her mum Linda had seen it. I got to see it when I saw her photos. She was incredibly relaxed and she just laughed all morning, I had such a lovely time with them all.
Images courtesy of https://www.laurencesweeneyphotography.com/
October slowed right down, with just 3 weddings that month but some trials and a few studio shoots. (I need to chase up Sara's pics)
The first pic is the very beautiful Faye, (image Love Photography ) who got married at Beamish Hall. Hair was by Simone whitehead.
The third picture is Megan, again hair by Simone Whitehead Bridal Hair, this image was from Lawrence Sweeny https://www.laurencesweeneyphotography.com/
I did a few studio shoots, a few guest makeups and 2 weddings in November.
The first was 4th November for Lysanne where I got to go to Healy Hall, https://www.healeyhall.com/ I haven't been before, this is where the wedding prep took place before going to Healy Hall for the ceremony https://crippsandco.com/healey-barn I got to finally meet Tina Elliot who was doing wedding hair (I think we may have met over a decade ago) https://tinaelliott.co.uk/ Just waiting on some images from Lysanne (who looked absolutely beautiful by the way) - i just managed to snap this on the way out.
The last wedding of 2019 was Lauren, a bride who had been a bridesmaid for another wedding. Originally, she was having Simone do her hair, but unfortunately, Simone broke her fingers and Lisa Cameron stepped in to save the day. This is why we have such an amazing network of other suppliers to help out when we need them. I've worked with Lisa at so many weddings over the years but hadn't seen her for some time, so it was brilliant to see her again. http://www.lisacameron.co.uk/ Lauren's ceremony took place at Webster's Ropery, take a look, its lovely http://www.webstersropery.co.uk/ I'm awaiting images from Lauren and will add them when I get some. She was such a chilled out bride, and she looked amazing.
We all ended up having a good catch up at Penshaw Tea rooms in Sunderland (and I had to have one of their amazing peach melba's) https://www.penshawfarmshop.co.uk/ well worth dropping by. Simone's fingers are healed, and back to their former creative state.
I took part in a shoot with Karen Mcgowran http://www.karenmcgowranphotography.co.uk/ at her studio in Ouseburn in Newcastle. It was for an amazing human who was being treated for cancer but she was also pregnant. (very similar to the recent Coronation Street storyline) You have no idea of someone's strength and determination when faced with such challenges. Incredibly beautiful, strong and positive, I couldn't help but admire her, a true warrior and she absolutely embraced the whole shoot. Think navy swishy dress, (I helped with the swishing and the wafting) teamed with electric orange eye makeup and lips, she looked fantastic. I absolutely loved the shoot, loved meeting her and think of her often, more so when I'm having a trivial day. I really can't wait to see the images and hope I can share them here.
And just like that, Christmas is almost upon us. I just had a few makeups at the start of this month and have a few Christmas nail appointments to go, but I have really enjoyed relaxing, baking and getting other projects done, and now planning for 2020. It's looking like it is going to a busy year - so I look forward to seeing some of you in the New Year. And with that, I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year x