We were delighted to see Averil Milligan from Wild About Soap featured in the Belfast Telegraph. As head gardener at National Trust's Rowallane Garden she is an expert when it comes to plants and herbs - an expertise and broad knowledge that she has transferred to the production of gorgeous handmade cold processed soap and organic body butter. You might have been lucky enough to get your hands on some of her lovely skincare products at The Bohemian Bazaar back in February, but if not then you will have a second chance, as she will also be exhibiting at The Spring Into Summer Fair at La Mon Hotel and Country Club on Sunday 8th April.
With just 4 days to go until Good Friday we thought we would run with an Easter theme for this week's blog post, so have shared some of our favourite rabbit themed gifts from just a few of our fabulous vintage and handmade sellers.
We can't vouch that these items will still be available for sale, but there will be plenty more lovely things to see and buy from these great folks at our next event, The Spring Into Summer Fair on Sunday 8th April.
Happy Easter everyone!
We know Spring is just around the corner, somewhere! In anticipation of some better weather and the appearance of spring flowers we have picked out 10 of our favourite floral designs, all from some of the fabulous exhibitors who will be taking part in The Spring Into Summer Fair at La Mon Hotel and Country Club on Sunday 8th April.
The Spring Into Summer Fair takes place from 12 to 5pm on Sunday 8th April at La Mon Hotel & Country Club. Admission costs £2 for adults and children go free. And don't forget that everyone will be able to enter the free draw for the chance to Win Afternoon Tea for 2!
How would you like to win afternoon tea for 2 courtesy of the lovely folks at La Mon Hotel & Country Club? Afternoon tea at La Mon includes:
Everyone who visits us at The Spring Into Summer Fair at La Mon Hotel & Country Club on Sunday 8th April will be able to enter the free draw to win this lovely prize!
The Spring Into Summer Fair takes place from 12 to 5pm on Sunday 8th April at La Mon Hotel and Country Club - located at 41 Gransha Road, Castlereagh, Belfast BT23 5RF. Admission costs £2 for adults and children go free. For more information check out the event page.
With only one week to go until Mothering Sunday we have rounded up twelve of our favourite gifts ideal for showing Mum how much you care. What's more they are all from some of the creative folks who will be exhibiting at THE BELFAST CATHEDRAL WEDDING FAIR on Saturday 10th March so if you like leaving things to the last minute then we have you sorted!
THE BELFAST CATHEDRAL WEDDING FAIR takes place from 12-5pm on Saturday 10th March at the Cathedral of St Annes, Belfast.
We do love a bit of sparkle and shine at Frock HQ, so with just under 2 weeks to go until The Belfast Cathedral Wedding Fair on Saturday 10th March we thought we would share our amazing jewellery designers with you. Not just for brides, the wedding fair will be the perfect place to pick up gorgeous bridesmaid jewellery and gifts for the Mothers of the bride and groom too!
Jeanette from Maryanna's Jewellery designs and makes unique, timeless and elegant bridal jewellery and gorgeous hair accessories. Works of art, they often incorporate genuine gemstones like emeralds, sapphire, pearls, topaz, and garnets, and because each piece is handcrafted with you in mind it will never be seen on anyone else.
For more information visit Maryanna's Jewellery on Facebook.
Norma Jean Vintage stocks the most fabulous range of antique and vintage jewellery and bridal accessories. Norma also reworks 1940's/1950's brooches and rhinestones together with vintage lace into the most stunning bridal and special occasion hair combs, all unique to you.
Julie from The Pretty Curious Design Studio says "My designs are inspired by many things, from flowers, birds, butterflies and other winged creatures, to old novels and pure whimsy. I have a penchant for Alice in Wonderland imagery and love woodland themed pieces too". Julie has been making jewellery and all kinds of lovely things for over 10 years. Using a range of new and vintage items in her designs, each item is carefully handmade with love and attention to detail. Custom orders are welcome, and wedding discount packages are available.
Erin of Erincraft Jewellery has an affinity with hearts and flowers, so many of her designs are perfect for brides and bridesmaids in particular. Her handmade sterling silver jewellery collections include pendants, rings, bangles and earrings, predominantly inspired by nature. Each piece comes in a white presentation box with the Erincraft logo, and gifts for bridesmaids come with a Thank You presentation card too.
We do love a bit of cake and chocolate at Frock HQ, so with The Belfast Cathedral Wedding Fair just a few weeks away we thought we would introduce you to some of the exhibitors who will be showcasing stunning bespoke cakes and scrumptious sweet treats on the day.......
Barbara from Barbie Bakes Cakes is an award-winning cake artist based in Belfast who specialises in cakes made with love for special occasions.
She says 'I set up the company in 2015 after spending many many years baking cakes and treats for my friends and family! Each and every cake is baked using the finest and freshest ingredients, created with a lot of love and passion for the job! Traditional, bespoke, quirky, modern and fun - all tastes and styles are catered for!'
Her 5 most popular cake flavours are Ferrero Rocher chocolate cake, chocolate & salted caramel, lemon drizzle, Victoria sponge, and raspberry and white chocolate cake. Mmmmm, our mouths are watering!
WEE DELIGHTS is a mouth watering collaboration between Wee Mallows and Wee ChoCo.
Wee Mallows produce a lovingly crafted artisan range of marshmallows. These sumptuous bites use only natural flavours and are hand made to perfection to tantalise your taste buds. The majority of the marshmallows are gluten, egg and dairy free. Profits from the company go to children's charities supporting those with learning difficulties and Autism.
Wee ChoCo is a community interests company, helping to develop the needs of people with learning difficulties. As well as producing award-winning chocolate in scrumptious flavours including Eton Mess, Honeycomb, Lime & Chilli, and Ginger & Orange, they also offer chocolate making workshops as well as wedding and corporate gifts and favours.
Having baked bespoke cakes for family, friends and community events for many years, Naomi from Cakes By Naomi now specialises in unique, delicious, bespoke wedding and celebration cakes for any occasion, hand-made to your requirements. Her cakes are both a treat to the eyes and the palette, and her beautiful creations include wedding and celebration cakes, cupcakes, macarons, brownies and tray bakes.
For more information visit Cakes By Naomi on Facebook.
Rob from GET BAKED creates the most delicious chocolate based treats. GET BAKED is all about home baked goodness and he has you sorted with brownies, truffles, shortbread, bourbon creams and heaps more to give you and your wedding guests sweet love and sugar highs. GET BAKED even produce gluten free treats. Perfect for wedding favours, dessert tables, hot chocolate bars and making your Big Day as sweet as can be!
THE BELFAST CATHEDRAL WEDDING FAIR takes place from 12 to 5pm on Saturday 10th March at Belfast Cathedral (St Anne's), Donegall Street, Belfast BT1 2HB and admission costs £5.
Our Event Manager Norma Smallwood (of Norma Jean Vintage fame) has launched her new jewellery range Arsenic & Old Lace. This venture showcases her own silver jewellery designs, inspired by the landscape, flora and fauna of Northern Ireland, as well as redesigned vintage jewellery pieces, and a gorgeous collection of old Irish linens and lace.
You can find out more by visiting Arsenic & Old Lace on Facebook and Instagram. You will also be able to see Norma's beautiful creations when she exhibits at The Belfast Cathedral Wedding Fair on Saturday 10th March.
Loved ones and secret admirers take note, we have picked out 10 favourite things we would like to receive as Valentine's gifts (hint, hint)! And to make things even easier, you will find all of the designer makers exhibiting at The Bohemian Bazaar at Belfast Castle this Sunday 11th February!
In this evening's MEET THE WEDDING SUPPLIER post we are delighted to introduce you to Anne McBride from Eclectic Cake Box who creates beautiful bespoke cake designs to impress and leave you with your taste buds well and truly tickled! We are delighted that she will be exhibiting at The Vintage & Handmade Wedding Fair at Belfast Cathedral this Saturday 6th May, and she has also donated a fantastic prize for the day. This week we caught up with Anne for a chat about weddings and cakes, so why not make yourself a cup of tea and find out what goes on behind the scenes in her creative kitchen!
So Annie, tell us about your background and how your business started?
My love of cake was born at the same time as my kids. Having family means get-togethers, special events to celebrate and parties to cater for. Obviously a party without cake is just a meeting so I rolled up my sleeves, popped my little peeps into their daddy’s strong arms and taught myself to bake delicious cake and host fantastically themed parties! I may have a touch of OCD when it comes to making things aesthetically pleasing so everything had to tie together. The theme, colour scheme and décor, along with a striking cake centrepiece that would pull all this together!
After about 10 years of throwing awesome parties, I moved on to making novelty cakes for other’s special events. Then encouraged to try social media, I needed to come up with a name to represent my passion for all things quirky, my love for elegance with a dash of vintage charm and my darker side, where I get to set my inner goth free; Eclectic Cake-Box was the obvious choice!
How did you move into the wedding market?
Moving into the wedding market, meant I could further indulge my passion for styling and create stunning edible centrepieces, because let’s face it, weddings are magical and seem to make everything shimmer and sparkle. Not only am I able to create your dream wedding cake, I can set up and style your cake table, make and create coordinating dessert tables and supply creative favours for your guests.
Where do you get your inspiration?
The wedding cake is still very much an important tradition, although they have developed somewhat over the past few years. I believe this is for the better, it seems anything is possible and certainly makes the wedding much more personal to each couple. I design the cakes using your theme, colour scheme and any personal traits or quirks you want to include. Each one is unique and bespoke to you. I will spend a lot, some might say too much, time on Pinterest fanning over other’s cakey skills and becoming encouraged to push the boundaries and experiment with new techniques, always whilst adding my own twist. Using only the freshest eggs and butter, quality ingredients and luxury chocolate your cake is sure to not only wow your guests, but leave you all with your taste buds well and truly tickled.
Since my cake business is part time, I have the added luxury of giving your cake a lot of attention. I only take a maximum of 2 commissions a month. I am extremely passionate about what I do and often it can become all consuming. From the initial concept idea through to snapping the set up pic at the venue, I endeavour to make it the best I possibly can! I am also fortunate enough to have a Mr Eclectic who carefully drives me and my tasty creations to venues all over Northern Ireland and patiently waits while I tweak and style to perfection.
Do you have any tips for brides and grooms?
Remember all the planning and organising will pay off. Enjoying your wedding day is the most important aspect of all, it marks the next chapter in your love story. Also, aim to steal a moment just to savour all your efforts too.
I look forward to meeting many of you at the upcoming Fayre where we can talk cake, try some tasty samples and I'll be giving away some vouchers too. Anne x
For more information please visit the Eclectic Cake Box website and also follow on Facebook.
Competition Alert! One very lucky bride and groom visiting The Vintage & Handmade Wedding Fair at Belfast Cathedral this Saturday 6th May will win a £100 gift voucher to spend at Eclectic Cake Box as part of our fabulous wedding fair prize package!