With Belle & Bride offering their services throughout the UK and abroad, I have had the pleasure of styling brides from a wonderful woodland wedding in the heart of Kent to the picturesque coast of Cornwall and further afield to the beautiful hills of Sorrento in Italy. And although the thought of flying off to glamorous destinations and warmer climes for a stylist seems like a dream… or hiring a stylist from near your home town and flying him / her out for the wedding seems like an ideal solution…sometimes the reality can be very different. That's why I've put together my below tips on ‘how to survive a destination wedding’ – I hope you enjoy!
Lovely Stylists… 1. Although we all know you have to be very organised to be a stylist – you have to be uber organised before a destination wedding! This means having your time schedule for the day done and sent out and printed before you leave the country – you don't want to be relying on dodgy wi-fi when you get there! Products need to be ordered in plenty of time before you're leaving, you don't want to be stressing over that missing Loreal Pli the day before your flight. And of course have your tickets, passport, accommodation and wedding details printed and organised and in your bag to avoid any last minute disasters. 2. You need to bare in mind the climate conditions of where the wedding is taking place. The products you decide to use may be different to a UK wedding at that time of year and it's most likely your client has chosen a hot country to get married! Pack plenty of hair spray as hair can go flat easily. Also products such as Lee Stafford and Oribe Anti – Humidity are great products to beat the potentially hot and humid weather. You may want to use more pins than normal for an up-do and your ‘touch up’ kit is even more essential to beat the weather. You should also be mindful of the conditions when planning your timing schedule – you do not want the brides hair to be flat by the time she is walking down the aisle. Her makeup artist will also probably want to apply the brides makeup last due to the same reason. 3. There will be even more organisation required with a destination wedding for the bride. Try to make her life easier by suggesting flights that will work for you but remember to leave plenty of time before the wedding in case of delays.
4. Taking on a destination wedding is normally a great experience for a stylist but remember there may be loss of income for you. You may lose out on a day of working and therefore income, normally for at least a day and a day before the wedding day. On the plus side, why not add a few days either side of the wedding and make a holiday of it!
5. Remember to cover your costs! It may be that the bride books the flights and accommodation for you but do not forget those hidden extras… transfers, travel to the airport, airport parking, hold luggage expenses etc
6. And this brings me on to my next point…you will definitely need to book hold luggage. You will not be able to carry most of your equipment in your hand luggage due to restrictions on aerosols, liquids and sharp instruments. However, do also make the most of your hand luggage and take a small suitcase that fits within the flight’s allowance. In there, pack a mini can of hairspray, a mini can of rough texturiser, your favourite hairbrush, a pot of curling clips and the all-important pins.
1. Try to book your hair stylist well in advance of your wedding day. Not all stylists will be willing to travel abroad and he/she will also need to be free for at least one day either side of your wedding date. Therefore, it may take a while to find someone that works for you.
2. In most cases, hiring a stylist from the UK and flying them out to your destination wedding works out better than hiring a stylist in that country. It is normally easier to communicate with them and easier to organise and attend trials. However, you will need to be prepared to pay for flights and accommodation for at least the night before the wedding. You should also expect to pay for added expenses such as transfers and airport parking.
3. If your destination wedding is in a hot or humid country – bare this in mind when selecting styles for you and your bridal party. Curls can be a particular problem. I always curl and set the hair in order to give the best chance of the curls holding all day. However, this can be depleted in the heat however much product you use. For my wedding in Sorrento, the bride initially wanted curls for her bridesmaids but after some discussion, the bride and I came to the compromise of styling the curls to one side of the head and therefore taking the curls off their necks. From the photos, I can see that the curls stayed put all day!
4. Be mindful of the heat when selecting flowers or accessories for the hair. My advice is to either stick to Gypsophilia (baby’s breath) or small waxy flowers as they will not wilt. Or even better, fake flowers can be a great alternative and will look great in any weather. My Sorrento bride went for Gyps during the day and changed to a crystal mini vine for the evening – which perfectly reflected the evening sun.