Groovy (gluten free) Wedding Cakes

“A party without cake is just a meeting” – a quote you will find on the wonderfully colourful and eclectic site of gluten-free bakery taking the world by storm. If you want to consider a different, healthy OR gluten-free wedding cake idea then get lost in the magical wonderland of Pearl & Groove and delve into the flavour explosions of Rose Water & Pistachio, Banana & Peanut Butter, Earl Grey Tea Cake & Dark Chocolate and Stem Ginger.

Pearl & Groove Bakery’s Top 5 Rules

Pearl and groove













Y – U – M


Peony Wedding Cake

An incredibly beautiful Peony Wedding Cake for you to feast your eyes on created by an extremely talented friend Domino Purchas.

We promise you will enjoy a browse of her beautiful creations in her photo gallery here.
Wedding Cake

Post Church Ice Lollies | Wedding Ideas & Inspiration

We’ve had a lot of questions about ideas of what to serve guests following the church service; if a homemade drink or glass of bubbles isn’t for you but you want to offer something here are some delicious recipes for summer ice lollies. For a lolly with a kick see our Champagne Ice Lolly recipe here. You could personalise the sticks and transport the lollies easily to the church in a cool box! For the two recipes below see two great blogs KatesCreativeSpace (fruit juice lollies) and DeliciouslyElla (dairy free).

Wedding Lollies

Wedding Wines | Advice from the experts at The Knotted Vine

Screen Shot 2013-12-16 at 18.03.22

We have been speaking to wine experts The Knotted Vine about their top tips for choosing the wines for your wedding. We’ve collected their key points below as well as highlighting the wines they would choose for a wedding right now. Their approach is simple, they offer good wine, and their ‘wine jargon’ is comprehensive. It makes us excited to explore their world of wine and to get tasting!

Have a read and if you would like more advice or a consultation with them for your wedding contact them here – they will be happy to help!

Seek our professional help!

Any reputable wine merchants will be more than happy to help you choose wines that work perfectly for your wedding and your personal taste. Any merchants worth their salt will happily crack open bottle after bottle for free to find that ideal drop. Plus they can help you with food matching and working to a budget.

Champagne Vs Sparkling?

Choosing Champagne over a sparkling wine will double your cost, simple as that. If you are going to go for Champagne then choose something that is quality driven and that you really love, even if it means reaching a bit deeper into the pocket. DO NOT just have Champagne because of its name. There are plenty of excellent sparkling wines out there for a fraction of the cost that will be a knock out on the day.

Don’t rush over to France!

There seems to be a myth that doing a ‘booze cruise’ is the way forward but it is not. If you spend cheap in a Calais wine shop you will end up with bad wine and Champagne (see tip 2), your guests are not stupid and people do notice! Plus, by the time you have paid for the ferry, petrol, lunch etc you probably could have had something much better and stayed on British soil.

Choose something YOU like

I know this sounds obvious but many couples worry so much about cost/matching with the food/pleasing Uncle Bertie and so on that they forget to choose something that appeals to their personal taste. It is your day and you have to drink the stuff as well…so it is important that you like it.

Don’t hold back

Look for a wine merchants that does Sale and Return. This way, you can be bold with your quantities and remove any fear that you will run dry. It’s hard because even though you might not want guests to guzzle down wine, at the same time a wedding that comes to an abrupt halt because the booze has run out is not a pretty sight.

Lastly….enjoy! It is wine after all, so use it as an opportunity to have some fun and, you never know, you might learn a thing or two along the way!

The Knotted Vine’s choice…Champagne

Wine Champagne Louis de

Louis Barthelemy ‘Amethyste’ Brut NV, Champagne, France £29

This Champagne is amazing value and the quality will blow you away. It is made with Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier and has been aged for 3 years before being released. Lovely deep toasty notes on the nose followed by apple and brioche on the palate with fine, elegant bubbles.

The Knotted Vine’s choice…Sparkling Wine

Wine Domaines de gandine

Domaine des Gandines Cremant de Bourgogne NV, Burgundy, France £12.25

This is a fully organic Cremant from Burgundy made in the Champagne method. It is 100% Chardonnay and aged for a year so has lovely toast and apple notes, superb flavour and fine bubbles!

The Knotted Vine’s choice…White Wine

Wine White Hecht and Ban

Hecht & Bannier 2012, Languedoc, France £10

This is one of my very favourite whites. It is a blend of Picpoul and Roussanne – two classic Southern French varieties. Picpoul has wonderul acidity and freshness whilst Roussanne is lush and tropically. The end result is a wine that has generous fruit flavour but still crisp, satisfying freshness.


Quinta dos Espinhosos ‘Casa do Arrabalde’ 2012, Minho, Portugal (Back in stock soon)
This is a modern choice and a knock out wine. Made from the much praised Alvarihno grape, this wines is juicy, fruit driven and simple very enjoyable. It is a great choice for a wedding because people will not expect it but will be deeply impressed.

The Knotted Vine’s choice…Red Wine

Wine red cossetti

Cossetti Barbera ‘Vigna Vecchai’ 2010, Piedmont, Italy £10

We love, LOVE this wine. It is made from 65 year old Barbera vines and aged for 24 months in oak barrels. This means it is deep, complex but still with great red fruit character. A medium bodied wine for sure, so very versatile and not too full on. An un-doubtable winner!

Wine red las perdices
Las Perdices Malbec 2011, Mendoza, Argentina £9
Argy Malbec is huge right now and for good reason – the wine is warm, soft and so easy drinking without being too heavy. It is a great session wine and, therefore, perfect for weddings. Plus it will pretty much go with any red meat dishes.
The Knotted Vine

Winter Weddings | Ways to keep warm

Winter Wedding Ideas

Blankets for your guests, mince pies, candles by the dozen, mulled cider…just some of the wonderfully romantic and creative ways to add something special (and warm to your winter wedding).

Mulled Cider is a lovely, warming post church drink that won’t cause a threat to the bride’s dress like Mulled Wine does! See a very simple and delicious recipe below.









3½pts/2L dry cider or fresh apple juice
2 apples studded with cloves
4-6 cinnamon sticks
5-6 allspice berries
zest of 1 orange
dark rum (optional)
slices of apple for garnish

Preparation method

Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan and simmer gently for 30 minutes – do not boil.
Transfer to a heatproof bowl and ladle into glass mugs or paper cups. Garnish with apple slices to serve.
This serves 8-10


If you are looking to buy lots of small pillar candles, Ikea are selling a 4 pack for £1.75 with a burn time of 15 hours.

Cold Hands Warm hearts photo:
Mulled Cider photo:
Mulled Cider Recipe:

London Caterers with a magical touch

There is nothing more exciting than coming across a wonderful and inspiring company like Social Pantry caterers. They recently interviewed Butterflies & Bells to find out more about us and we couldn’t recommend what they do highly enough; read our interview here and indulge in a peruse through their magical photos on Facebook.

If you are looking for a caterer for your wedding do get in touch with Alex and see what she can help you with.

London Caterers

Sloe Gin Wedding Favours

Sloe Gin Wedding Favours















The sloes are out and those with a winter wedding on the horizon might be searching for some interesting ideas for your wedding favours. Well, if you have at least 2 months to go, then get picking and shaking and treat your guests to a delicious bottle of homemade sloe gin.

Use this simple and quick recipe below or for a more detailed and intricate brew then have a read of Sipsmith’s suggestions here.

Sloe Gin Recipe


  • 450g/1lb sloes
  • 225g/8oz caster sugar
  • 1 litre/1¾ pint gin (USE GOOD GIN!)

Preparation method

  1. Prick the tough skin of the sloes all over with a clean needle and put in a large sterilised jar.
  2. Pour in the sugar and the gin, seal tightly and shake well.
  3. Store in a cool, dark cupboard and shake every other day for a week. Then shake once a week for at least two months.
  4. Strain the sloe gin through muslin into a sterilised bottle.

Wedding Dresses, Stationery & Ideas | Favourites from the Designer Wedding Show

Four suppliers stood out for us at the Designer Wedding Show. Two dress designers, a stationer and a food and drink Tricycle supplier.

EMMA HUNT wedding dresses – Eyecatching on her stand and on the catwalk with some beautiful lace designs. Emma’s bespoke wedding dresses balance elegant, classic styles with modern detailing and clean lines for truly timeless pieces. She is based in Wimbledon.

IDEAS BOX  Espresso Tricycle – A fun way to introduce coffee or cheese to your meal, by wheeling in an old fashioned tricycle to serve up the goods. Or there are Pimms tricycles, Ice cream tricycles and many more….a fun addition to your wedding!

LISA REDMAN wedding dresses – Lisa’s dresses really caught our eye on the catwalk and we rushed to find her stand. A fashion focused and experience designer she is a lovely and extremely talented. Don’t be put off by the fact her focus isn’t just wedding dresses, she works to produce a sophisticated and timeless design no matter what the occasion and her wedding dresses are different and unique to many of those around at the moment. She will help to create your perfect and timeless piece that you will cherish forever. Based in Notting Hill, she is well worth a visit.

LEEMING BROTHERS stationery – It is hard to stand out when you have some of London’s top stationers exhibiting but Hampshire based Leeming Brothers stationery had a luxurious stand exhibiting truly luxurious stationery. Like many classic stationers they offer beautiful hand engraved stationery, they also work with letterpress printing dating back to the mid 1400s. We recommend requesting a sample pack, you will fall for the beautiful colours and textures that they work with and you might just be tempted off the traditional wedding invite as the other options are just so beautiful…

Wedding Ideas & Inspiration | Cheese Wedding Cake

A great alternative to a traditional Wedding Cake is a Cheese Wedding Cake. Not only is it an interesting and different take on the tiers of a wedding cake, but will suit a cheese loving couple more than traditional fruit cake.

Your caterers can then serve the cheese on boards as an additional course during supper or prepare a cheese table to accompany tea & coffee later in the evening. You or your caterer can buy up juicy grapes, figs, biscuits etc to accompany the cheese.

Most cheese shops and delis (i.e Hamish Johnston, Northcote Road in the photo below) will offer some sort of Cheese Cake service; otherwise find a helpful assistant in your local Waitrose and do it yourself using the tried and tested combination relating to the bottom two photos:

From bottom up: Brie, Cornish Yarg, Camembert, Stilton, Vignotte, Godminster Cheddar (in wax case), St Albray, Goat’s cheese on top

Seasonal Food at your wedding

When planning for your wedding it is a given that you will work with what flowers are in season, you may even select your wedding date around seasonal flowers. Just as much thought should be given to what foods are in season…you don’t want to select strawberries, because you absolutely love them, only to find they will be crunchy and flavourless or to find out at your tasting that Scallops in April really aren’t advised….

Have a peruse of website Eat the Seasons to find out what foods are really flourishing at the time of your wedding so you can choose the juiciest and tastiest selections available…

Chilled Champagne with a twist?

If you’re having a summer wedding why not have some fun serving your champagne. As well as serving glasses of chilled bubbles you could offer Pink Champagne Ice Lollies to your guests when they leave the church or arrive at the reception.

If it doesn’t suit your wedding it would be a fun idea to celebrate a summer engagement!

As seen on Sheer Luxe’s recipe of the day

Ingredients (Makes 6-8)

– 100ml (3½fl oz) water
– 100g (3½oz) caster sugar
– 400ml (14fl oz) pink Champagne (Laurent-Perrier rosé or similar)


1. Pour the water into a saucepan and add the sugar. Place over a low heat and bring to the boil, whisking often, until the sugar dissolves.
2. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, continuing to whisk until the liquid turns into a syrup. Set aside and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
3. Add the champagne and whisk together. Pour into lolly moulds, filling them about two-thirds full so that the mixture has room to expand as it freezes.
4. Place in the freezer for about 30 minutes, until almost solid, then insert a stick in each one. Freeze for another 30 minutes.

If you can’t find pink Champagne, use ordinary Champagne and add a splash of crème de cassis.