My Hen Do: Part One

Confetti. Check. Friends. Check. Bride-to-be. Check.

Excitement on the Rictor scale ranked pretty much 'Christmas morning aged 7' on the 21st May – aka my Hen Do. A good exhilaration test for the big day itself. The level of excitement, anticipation and slight out-of-body sensation had been building since receiving an invitation to 'celebrate the single life of Rose Letley' some months beforehand.

Whilst I was aware that an extravagant weekend away was being planned for the hardcore friends (read: drinkers) in my social circle, I didn't want some very special ladies in my life to miss feeling part of it – hence, the two part Hen Party antics that I was treated to. My mother, godmother, cousins and not to mention new mother-in-law found a trip to London far more practical than wherever I will be heading off to in a few short weeks! (Not that I know where that'll actually be, I'm sure Bognor isn't that far!)

Dress code: Vintage Glamour
Location: Betty Blythe Tearooms, West London
Time: 1.30pm

Being in bride-on-a-mission mode, I had planned my morning to within a minute's detail. Again, good practice for the Big Day! First stop, contact lens assessment and trial as there is still a pretty large chance I won't be able to rely on my eyes to find the groom at the end of the aisle! Damn vanity and not opting for a geek chic wedding theme!

Next onto Space NK for my second make-up trial – the first being in January when my skin was at its palest so I was back with a bit more Spring blush in my cheeks. Working with a fabulous make-up artist (one of the region's award-winners no less) and sharing my extended Pinterest board of inspiration, my look for 'natural bridal glow' - READ: "natural" (err let's say medium coverage), "bridal" (but with a vampier eye), "glow" (big yes to contouring) - was achieved. Armed with an amazing Chantecaille Future Skin foundation matched to my Spring/Summer skin tone, an incredible NARSissist matte/shimmer eyeshadow palette, Kevin Aucoin's 'The Flesh Tone Lip Pencil' and matching peachy Chantecaille lipstick, my credit card took a hit but the face looked the part!

Space NK Bridal Beauty Purchases

Final part of the look, you've guessed it, was the hair! Having spent a year dedicated to ensuring my hair is at its healthiest; goodbye hair dye and heat tooling, hello salon treatments and regular cuts, I was struggling with the notion that healthy hair, in my case, doesn't hold a great curl. A total bummer as that's exactly what I’m after! Anyway, an awesome blow-dry later but I was running 30 minutes late! Yes there's a tradition for the bride to turn up late on her wedding day but I don't think that applies to the Hen Do. So a certain flustered version of myself (but with good hair and make-up thankfully) dashed home to hop into the new ASOS outfit I'd ordered – when better an occasion to wear a white tulle tutu skirt that this?!

Stepping out of a black taxi, I got shivers up my spine thinking this is exactly how I will be arriving to the church in a few weeks time. Walking into the beautiful and quaint tearooms in Brook Green seeing a room full of my favourite faces completely overwhelmed me. Normally quite a loud person in a room full of people, suddenly I was the quietest and had to suppress the overwhelming happiness coming out of my eyeballs in liquid form – yes, the mascara I was wearing may have been prepared for all conditions (even 40 degrees heat) but this was not the time to test it!

Here come the girls...
Project 365: 41 days to go
"Get that woman a glass of champagne" was shouted from somewhere over the other side of the table – a total remedy - meanwhile a pink 'Bride-to-be' sash and veil was thrust upon me. Sandwiches, canapes, cakes, sweet things and copious bubbles kept emerging from the kitchen like a conveyor belt keeping sugar levels peaking. I hopped around the table to get to speak to everyone but like all good things I'm finding, they fly by in the blink of an eye. No sooner was my mother hushing everyone to make a speech, that I was crying, they were paying the bill and we were heading home to crack open more Prosecco.

Feeling particularly merry as the afternoon wore on, I was ushered out to the garden surrounded by lots of whispering in the crowd. Whilst my mother took on 11 rounds with her iPhone and a tree to video the sequence of events, she managed to completely miss capturing the flurry of white confetto that showered over me! Never mind, time for take 2 – here's the pictures.

Letley Ladies (for now)
Take Two!
My Hens

The night concluded with the remaining hardcore drinkers working through the alcohol, a Facetime with my sister who was "just hanging" in a hammock in Columbia, and a delicious order from Chosen Bun. Life was complete and I was one happy gal.

© Mrs A to B

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