DIY Tutorial: Gold Glitter Reindeer (Plastic Toys)

Brrrr, it’s frosty today! Had to fill up on gingerbread latte whilst walking the doggy this morning – much rather it was like this than soggy and wet though. Hopefully will stay this way for any Cotswold winter weddings, but could do without the snow and ice this year!

I promised a tutorial on how to make the gold glitter reindeer I recently created for the Hyde Barn Tweetup….

Gold Glitter Animals Wedding Table

Image via Motif Wedding Photography

For some time there has been a trend in the wedding industry (and some general pinterest love) for spray painting little plastic animal figures for table decorations, and it’s such a simple but cute addition which would particularly suit a farm or barn wedding venue. They’d make great escort cards, or cake toppers and are perfect an animal loving couple!

As the wedding table I styled was so close to Christmas I thought I’d take this trend one stop further with little woodland creatures covered in glitter… blingtastic! The little deer folk are now on my fireplace mantel looking rather jolly even if I do say do myself.

glitter reindeer and hearts fireplace

Image via Jessie Thomson on Instagram

These were so easy to make, here is  what you need….

  • Plastic Figurines – you can buy tubs of animals online, most commonly you’ll find farm, rainforest, zoo and jungle creatures. My reindeer were from Schleich which can be found in most toy shops and via amazon.
  • Mod Podge – or other white pva glue
  • Gold glitter
  • Paintbrush – any old/cheap one will do, just make sure it’s fairly small so you can get into the nooks and crannies!
  • Newspaper – glitter gets messy!

I used my paintbrush to give the plastic deer a thin(ish) layer of glue all over, held it over the newspaper and then sprinkled glitter all over until it was covered. Here is what they lookd like after the one coat:

Gold Glitter Reindeer Toys

Not bad, but you can see there a few spots missing glitter, especially  where I was holding them (the foot!) and glue had come off. I let them dry overnight then touched up with extra glue in the gaps with my litte paintbrush the next morning, re-sprinked glitter and voila, they were evenly covered!!

Gold Sparkle Deer

Image via Photoglow

They are a fun an easy Christmas project, and actually I think they’d look cute turned into Christmas tree hanging decorations or used to tie onto Christmas wrapped pressies for a bit of luxe.

What do you think?



DIY Glitter Feather Tutorial

Hey there,

My hubby came home from Brighton last night with advent  calendars from the in-laws. Which means one thing, Christmas is just around the corner!!

I recently styled a table for the Hyde Barn Tweetup and promised to share a few tutorials for the DIY elements (there were quite a few!). One of the prettiest was the glitter feather garlands I made to decorate the backs of the chairs:

Gold Glitter Dipped White Feathers

Image via Photoglow

Gold Glitter Feather Garland Chair Back

Image via Eve Dunlop

They are so simple to make and would also look great at place settings  or strung up around the venue, perhaps even a gorgeous backdrop for the head table. I also think they’d look super pretty adorning a Christmas tree, so thought I’d share this one with you first!

Ok so here’s what you need:

  1. Pack of white feathers (I got mine from amazon nice and cheap, but you can also get them from other craft shops fairly easily)
  2. Gold thread (or twine, or cotton, or ribbon, or…. you get the picture!)
  3. PVA glue (I used mod podge as it dries nice and clear)
  4. Gold glitter
  5. Small paintbrush
  6. Newspaper (the glitter gets messy!)

So I started off by pouring some glitter into plastic container – I found this helpful in getting an even coverage and also when sprinkling glitter from the main container it allowed me to keep things tidy. I then dipped one end of the feather into the tub of glue, shaking off any excess, before dipping straight into my container of glitter. It worked, but the result was a bit too heavy on the glitter for me (never thought  you’d hear me say that!).

So, I got a cheap small paintbrush, and with my next feather I painted the glue on in a thin layer before sprinkling with the glitter  (over my container to catch it). This resulted in a much neater finish with just as much sparkle… so I continued using that technique until I’d done around five feathers per chair.

I used fine gold thread to string each mini garland together – but you could use any string/cotton/ribbon that takes your fancy. If you do use a finer thread then be careful not to get them tangled if you need to transport them (like I did!).

By the way I also did some others afterwards with gold glitter spray (just spraying the ends of each feather), which was much more subtle but looked gorgeous. A good option if need to save time or don’t want the mess!!

Happy glittering!



DIY Fringe Streamers and Pinwheels

Hi again,

Yesterday I helped Chris & Debbie celebrate their very exciting wedding at The Great Tythe Barn in the Cotswolds. Hopefully I’ll get to share some images with you soon… but let’s just say there was a barn owl, an ice luge, The Beatles and some pretty incredible fireworks. Excited much?!

But first, I’ve promised to share with you some of the DIY secrets behind my decorations used when I styled the September window for The White Rose Bridal Boutique in Chipping Campden, which happened to coincide with the fabulous one year anniversary celebrations they held there featuring a gorgeous singer and some delicious cupcakes from The Cheltenham Cakery.

Here are some images with thanks to the lovely Danielle who owns the boutique, and has a wealth of knowledge about all things bridal.

Everything in this window is really easy for you to make yourself, yet all the bright colours and attention to detail would make your wedding decor super fabulous.

First up, DIY fringe streamers. Here is what you need:

  • Pack of Crepe Paper – not the ready made streamers
  • Scissors
  • Masking Tape – just to secure the streamers from the ceiling

Take a roll of crepe paper, and cut off a section about two inches wide. Then along each edge, cut the “fringe” leaving space along the middle. Once both sides have been done, twist the whole thing a little and then pull apart. Voila!

Here is a few useful visual from the blog Oh Happy Day which might be handy:

Do these in whatever colour scheme your heart desires, then hang from the ceiling or along walls… Lovely!

The pinwheels take a little more effort, but once you get the hang of them are pretty simple and look really effective. What you’ll need:

  • Thick paper or card in chosen colours
  • Fishing wire/cotton thread
  • Scissors
  • Glue Gun/Double Sided Tape
  • Ruler (optional)
  • Hole puncher (optional)

First you need to take one piece of card paper and fold it accordion style, using your thumb as guidance for the width will save time using a ruler. Once you have folded the whole piece of paper, fold the whole thing in half and glue the inside folds together. This will make one third of your wheel.

Repeat two more times and you should have three parts, which you can then spread out and glue together on each side of the outer accordion fold to make a full wheel.

You can leave it like this, or stick on a different colour circle of card paper (button or brooch if you prefer) for the centre as a bit of extra decor.

In order to hang them you’ll need to either punch a hole at the top of one of the folds to thread wire or cotton through, or like I did, simply hot glue a length of fishing wire to the back.

You could also use them in other inventive ways, such as this gorgeous table runner featured on Green Wedding Shoes:

Here they rounded off the edge of one end of the accordion folds before gluing together, they also punched holes in some of them for added prettiness.

There are other DIY projects to try from my styled window, including the pretty cake topper and mini flower pom poms which make great table decor if you want a burst of colour.

Let me know how you get on!



Wedding Trends for 2012 – My Predictions

Well welcome back ladies and gents, hope you all had a wonderful break over Christmas and a very happy new year. It seems there has been lots of engagements announced which is VERY exciting, and many couples really kicking into full planning mode now 2012 has come around.

Recently I shared a few of my thoughts on wedding trends for 2012 via Facebook, and promised to do a full blog post on it for the new year…. so here you have it! Just a few of those key themes I expect to continue throughout 2012, with photo’s from REAL Cotswold weddings taken by the fabulous Marcus Ward from Bigeye Photography and the talented Kay Ransom from Kay Ransom Photography.

<<a big CONGRATS to Marcus who has just announced the birth of his beautiful baby boy!

Many thanks also to the gorgeous couples who submitted their wedding photo’s for this post. All of them were simply stunning!

Now, feast your eyes on this….

Budget Friendly

Due to the trend for not being seen to be too flash when times are tough, I’m continuing to see couples tightening their purse strings and sticking to much smaller budgets for their wedding days. This is something I’d expect to continue in 2012, but couples will also be getting more creative with decorations and personal touches to make the day incredibly special. I predict a continued love affair with vintage finds, flea market chic, upcycled decorations, DIY projects in abundance, contributions and support from family and friends in the wedding party.

Family photo's of the bride and groom displayed on a shabby chic pin board

Budget Friendly Decor

Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

A touch of flea market chic used for the guest book

Vintage Typewriter Guestbook

 Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

A gorgeous DIY inspired wedding sign with country flowers

DIY Wedding Sign

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

DIY tissue paper dahlia's with hyacinth bulb favours for eco-friendly and budget weddings

DIY Plantable Favours

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

CD favours for music loving couples or those with a festival theme - a fun, budget friendly DIY project!

DIY CD Favours

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

Jam Jars and Wildflowers

Table displays and venue decorations are increasingly done DIY, and collected jam jars with twine and ribbon around them, filled with blooms, are still the number one choice for brides on a budget and those looking to boost their eco credentials. They’re also often used for tea light holders and favour displays.

wildflowers in jam jars

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

a pretty display of flower filled jam jars tied with ribbon

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

Snap Happy

Photo booths are everywhere! From hired in booths, photographers offering the service as part of a package, to DIY inspired backdrops with props. Don’t expect this trend to go anywhere in 2012. Guests love it, and some fabulous photos are created.

DIY Photobooth

Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

Royal Wedding Mania

Kate and Wills showed us all how to hold a grand affair, yet kept it simple and chic. The popular couple will still be more than likely to influence weddings next year, with brides increasingly seeking simple white flowers and modest lace dresses for their wedding attire.

Royal wedding inspiration

Lace wedding dress with simple white flower bouquet

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,

Environmental Bliss

Year on year eco-friendly weddings are increasingly popular and I don’t see that changing in 2012, as the general public become more aware of their impact on the environment. Who hasn’t watched Frozen Planet?! From responsible venues, to seasonal flowers, locally sourced suppliers, vintage and second hand dresses, upcycled decorations, plantable favours, UK honeymoons… the possibilities to be eco-friendly AND fabulous are endless!

Eco-friendly table display and favours

Credit:  Photography by Marcus Ward,

Eco Bride and Groom Place Cards

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

Eco-friendly chilli seed favours

Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,

Setting the Theme

Almost all of the brides I’ve worked with this year have wanted to have a design concept or a theme to base their whole wedding day around. Having a unique and personalised day has become top of the agenda, with more and more daring ideas and dreams being realised!

1920's film inspired invitations

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Stationery by Megan Alice England,

1920's film inspired place names

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Stationery by Megan Alice England,

Moroccan Themed Wedding

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,; Props by Oasis Events,

Goodbye Fruit Cake

It’s pretty rare to see a traditional wedding cake on display these days, and increasingly popular are alternatives such as sweet buffets, cupcakes, ice cream bars, pudding tables, “cheese” cakes, cake pops… all completely mouth watering for guests to enjoy!

Shabby Chic Cupcakes

Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Cupcakes by Cirencester Cupcakes,; Design inspired by Jessie Thomson,

Sweetie Cart

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Sweet cart provided by Something Borrowed Something Blue,

Clash of the Colours

Next year I predict that we’ll see a real contrast between weddings with very simple and pale colour schemes versus those with a mix of bright splashes of bold colour! I predicted that Kate Middleton would chose a simple bouquet of sweet lily of the valley for her wedding, and it’s a craze that’s been kicked off. However I’m also seeing brides wanting to inject more fun into their big day, especially at barn weddings where colour can really add further dimension to the room.

Colourful Spring Flower Bouquet

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

Bright Colour Bouquet

 Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Flowers by Rachel Jones,

Bright and colourful DIY inspired decor for table decorations

Credits: Photography by Marcus Ward,; Styling by Jessie Thomson,


Under the Veil

Brides are becoming more adventurous with their accessories and that includes ditching the veil or tiara. Instead bespoke creations, vintage heirlooms and wreaths of flowers are being wrapped around flowing locks – a distinctly bohemian vibe will stay strong for 2012.

Floral bridal headpiece

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

Boho Alternative Veil

Credits: Photography by Kay Ransom,; Headpiece by Gillian Million Designs,; Design inspired by Jessie Thomson,

Delicate Details

Lots of brides like to add a personal touch to their wedding day now and there is a lovely trend growing for incorporating family heirlooms into dresses, jewellery, headdresses and bouquets. Vintage buttons from Grandma’s wedding dress, or a family member’s engagement ring…. Either way it’s a nice way to cover your something old or something borrowed.

Antique ring detail on brides bouquet

Credit: Photography by Marcus Ward,

So there you have it folks! Were there any ideas on this list that you plan to incorporate into your own wedding plans this year? Or are you being more daring and doing something completely “off trend”?! Would love your comments!

Now, off to write up some proposals and prepare for a big event in February… it’s a good ‘un and a big birthday bash rather than a wedding, so hopefully lots of fab ideas to share soon.



Wedding styling and food tasting event at The Matara Centre

Afternoon lovely readers, I’ve been so excited about writing this post… ever since the event itself last week! About a month ago I was approached by The Matara Centre to help them come up with design concepts and style the main function room for a yummy food tasting event being held for all their 2012 brides & grooms.

The Matara Centre by Bigeye Photography

If you don’t know the venue, it’s a stunning retreat in Kingscote, in the heart of the Cotswolds, and has a very spiritual feel to it. With lots of Asian influences, it has excellent eco-credentials and a real bohemian feel that so many couples are drawn towards. Couples can hold an outdoor ceremony at the venue in the cloistered courtyard, and for every couple who get a hitched there – a tree is planted in the grounds as a forever memory.


Trees planted for couples who get married at The Matara Centre, by Bigeye Photography


So naturally when I was first approached by the owner, I was delighted to offer my services and come up with some initial design concepts. They loved my ideas and so the wheels were set in motion! I was asked to come up with five different design concepts for separate tables, they needed to be completely different styles for individual tastes, but still representing the uniqueness of the venue – and also showing prospective couples that the sky really is the limit when it comes to realising their own design dreams. Many couples visit the venue and fall in love, but struggle somewhat to create the main function room into their dream day. It’s quite a large and empty room, so there is lot’s of scope for creativity, but that is not always something that comes naturally to us all.


Jessie Thomson Weddings & Events

So… five themes were created to get the creative juices flowing: a warm pink and red moroccan theme, a glitzy starry night theme, a clean and modern orange and navy theme, a vintage peacock theme, and a fun and colourful “wedstival” theme inspired by Woodstock & Glastonbury.

Each table was to be dressed as per the themes, all inspired by elements of the venue itself, to be used as a starting point to carry the theme throughout a wedding day.

I’m going to stop talking and just show you the wonderful photo’s next,which were all taken by the AMAZING Marcus Ward from Bigeye Photography. I also want to say a massive thank you to all of the suppliers involved, all of whom I will mention again, pointing out their contributions: flowers by Flowercube, stationery by Invitable, props and decorations from Oasis Events, and favours and table decorations by Chocolate Apple Creations, Essentially Me, Something Borrowed Something Blue.


First up, the starry night theme, inspired by the gorgeous midnight blue starry ceiling of the main function room:


Starry Ceiling at The Matara Centre


Starry Night Themed Table


White chocolate, coconut, and caramel truffle favours provided by Chocolate Apple Creations

Stationery by Invitable

Flowers by Flowercube


The next table is a warm pink and red Moroccan theme, which glowed beautifully later in the evening with the lanterns and tealights in Moroccan glasses. Rose petals were scattered and gorgeous favours provided by Essentially Me who made bespoke perfumes and mini bags of goodies:


Moroccan Themed Table


Props by Oasis Events; Favours by Essentially Me

Stationery by Invitable



Then there was the fabulous Music Festival themed table, with DIY cd favours which you can make yourself here, vintage green glass bottles, paper straws, DIY tin can holders, delicious swirly lollipops and pretty vintage table cloth material:

Swirl Lollipop's by Chocolate Apple Creations


DIY cd favours and stationery by Invitable

Stationery by Invitable


The next table is a bright and modern table with orange, green and navy accents, DIY plantable bulb favours were created by myself and you can make them too by following the instructions here.

Modern Orange Theme


DIY and Eco-friendly Plantable Bulb Favours

Flowers by Flowercube

Stationery by Invitable, Lovebirds by Something Borrowed Something Blue


And finally…. a gorgeous vintage peacock theme, with lots of sweet goodies for favours, vintage teacups and birdcages.


Vintage Peacock Theme

Stationery by Invitable, mini birdacage holders by Something Borrowed Something Blue

Flowers by Flowercube, peacock feathers provided by Jessie Thomson

Vintage tea cup favours by Chocolate Apple Creations


Of course since the day was a food tasting event for couples getting hitched at The Matara Centre, I thought I’d also share a few shots of some of their scrummy food!!


…and I can confirm that it was all absolutely DELISH! 🙂

In addition to the main tables I hung paper lanterns from the fabulous ceiling with ribbons and colourful bunting…

So are you planning a wedding at The Matara Centre? I’d love to hear about your own theme and design inspiration. Or send me your photo’s of one that’s already taken place, it may well be fabulously blogworthy.

Best wishes



Twitter: @Jessie_Thomson



Credits: photography, Bigeye Photography; flowers, Flowercube; stationery, invitable; venue, The Matara centre; favours, Chocolate Apple Creations, Essentially Me and Something Borrowed Something Blue; props, Oasis Events.



Competition time!!

Hello lovely brides, grooms and wedding pro’s!

Because I’m in such a wonderful mood today (see what I did there?) I’ve decided to give away a fantastic prize on my Facebook page this week. I know, I know, so generous right?

All you have to do is post a picture of yourselves (the perfect couple)  here with a mini story of your engagement to share with my followers and you will automatically be entered into the competition with a chance to WIN a free design consultation and personalised mood board worth £200!

French rustic wedding mood board - inspired by one stunning green dress, created by Jessie Thomson ~ Weddings & Events (various sources).

This will help to set the scene for your big day and will provide you with lots of inspiration. Essential if you’re going down the DIY route or struggling to come up with a “theme” that reflects your personalities.

So go ahead, hop on over to and get posting!



Wedding inspiration: a taste of France in the Cotswolds


As some of you may already know, I’m off for two weeks on Friday for a proper adventure…. a road trip in France!!! I’m taking my hubby, a digital camera, my Diana F+, and plenty of space in the boot for cheese and wine!

Sadly our doggy Winnie can’t join us due to complication with her pet passport (loooong story), so she’ll be packing her bags and staying with her aunty Maisy the chocolate Labrador in Brighton. I don’t think she minds!

I’ll be making my way down to the South of France via a number of beautiful areas, staying in boutique hotels, safari tents, yurts…. you name it! We’re joining friends in a villa when we get there, where we’ll rest up for a week before the long journey back… though there will be one more stop at a brides wedding venue in Normandy, where she is getting hitched in 2012.

So, what on earth has this got to do with weddings, I hear you cry?

Well ladies and gents. Imagine this.

Wedding Inspiration - French Lime Blossom

What could be more romantic than a French wedding theme, in a chateau style setting, or more casual venue dressed as a cosy French bistro? Candlelight… wine flowing, rustic food and yummy bread, macaroons in simple pastel colours, post cards of Paris. And the bride… Oh my, how much inspiration can one gal get? Marie Antoinette, Coco Chanel, Brigitte Bardot, Marion Cotillard, Edith Piaf… I could go on.

French music will ring through the air, and for entertainment why not hire a local artist to paint portraits of guests (maybe not quite Manet, but a lovely touch).

Flowers and bouquets, keep simple and scented….. include Lily of the Valley,  Irises, Lavender and Rosemary. Devine.

For favours, a cute idea would be to make mini books containing classic French recipes for guests to try at home.

Well this mini post was just a taster as I’m going to take lots of photos and make lots of notes during my own journey through France and then I’ll be back on here with lots more inspiration and ideas of how couples getting married in the Cotswolds can pull of this theme in style.

Any local vendors who think they’ll fit right in, please do get in touch!

Bon Voyage!



Unique Wedding Rings

Some beautiful friends are planning their wedding in 2012 at their gorgeous property in France – complete with a green wedding dress, guests in masks and eco-favours for everyone. I really can’t wait!

I was talking to them about wedding rings and with their love for the unconventional they were of course looking for something a little different. He proposed with a real daisy, and she wears a big flower engagement ring to represent that moment. So what unique and personal item would they want to exchange on the day?

I came across a wonderful company a little while ago called e+k charms, who offer bespoke electroforming of precious items as keepsakes.

e+k electroformed charms

I thought it would be a lovely way of preserving an item from a wedding day at the time, but realised that it may also be something my friend could use beforehand. Why not electroform the daisy she’s so carefully kept safe and make it into an item of jewelery to exchange in place of a ring??

Which got me thinking… could you try it yourself….?? Apparently so!

Now I can’t stop wandering about all the things I’d like to transform into forever keepsakes…has anyone else done this DIY? Personally I think I’ll stick to the professionals!

Find out more at