Madame B’s Boutique is the home of fabulous, eye catching eco-friendly wedding accessories, inspired by vintage style but with a thoroughly modern twist and a hint of burlesque glamour.
For those looking for something a little different, with more of an edge than traditional bridal accessories, then Madame B’s boutique is for you. Browse through their latest designs online or go bespoke if you’re looking for a totally unique piece to really rock your wedding outfit.
From elaborate headpieces and veils to custom cufflinks and buttonholes. Owner Beth designs for people who like to stray from the well-trodden path and give their imagination free reign. And if that isn’t an invitation to read on and take a good look at just a small selection Madame B’s creations below, then we don’t know what is! Here’s Beth now in her own words.
Tell us a little about yourself and your business
Hello! I’m Beth, aka Madame B – milliner, designer-maker, fashion history buff and unapologetic gin-swilling feminist. I create bespoke, ethical wedding accessories for unique, creative and non-traditional weddings.
That can include a variety of designs, from elaborate headpieces and veils to custom cufflinks and buttonholes. I love to make beautiful things for people who like to stray from the well-trodden path and give their imagination free reign.
What motivated you to start your business?
To have the freedom to make a living from my creativity. As a small child, I loved to play with my Mum’s button tin, fascinated by all the different colours, textures, and the history behind each button. I’d turn my hand to anything creative, too – drawing, painting, sewing, papercrafts, whatever I could get my hands on.
I discovered millinery five years ago, taking modules at the London College of Fashion. I was totally hooked! I loved the combination of traditional and modern design skills. I learned from Chloe Scrivener, who has worked with such prestigious names as Philip Somerville (the Queen’s former milliner) and Philip Treacy.
Now, I use those skills to create exciting bespoke pieces for creative couples. It’s great to help someone to express their personality through what they wear.
Tell us a little more about the day to day activities of your business
Most days start with strong coffee, followed by a quick bit of yoga, then onto the computer to check enquiries, update the website and social media, etc. After that, I could be searching for supplies, meeting with a customer for a consultation or a fitting, or working on an order in my home studio.
I like to have something on in the background while I’m sewing – either music or a funny podcast like 2 Dope Queens.
If our readers were to order from you, what can they expect?
I can promise that whatever you order from me will be handmade from high quality, ethically sourced materials, and sent to you securely in pretty, eco-friendly packaging. I also think it’s important to get to know you a little bit, especially with bespoke orders, to make sure we’re on the same page.
Before confirming a bespoke order, I will have a chat with you to go over your ideas in more detail. During the making process I will also send you ‘work in progress’ photos so you can see how the design is shaping up and request changes if you want to. It’s all about making the beautiful image in your imagination into a reality!
How can couples judge if a company is the right fit for their wedding?
The best way to work out if a company is a good fit is to get to know them a little bit. Firstly, do a little research online – does their visual style sit well with yours? Do they have some nice reviews and testimonials? If that all looks promising, ask to chat to someone in the company and tell them about your ideas.
Do they understand what you want? Are they enthusiastic? Do they listen to you properly, or are they trying to tell you what they think you should have?
Of course, practical concerns like budget and location will be important too, but make sure you’re using your budget to book people that are definitely going to give you what you want.
What are your favourite moments from previous weddings you’ve been involved with?
I love the design process, coming up with an exciting idea for a customer, getting the colours just right, finding the perfect bit of lace to complement a dress, for example. I think my favourite part is hearing back from couples after their wedding day and seeing their photos. It makes me happy to have made a small contribution to making that day special for them.
This recent wedding was a lot of fun to work on – the couple are big American Football fans, and they wanted their bridesmaids to wear flowers in the colours of their favourite teams!
The bigger picture – does your business offer goods/services outside of the wedding world? Tell us more.
I create designs for other special occasions too (e.g. hats for Ascot) and my custom cufflinks and other small items of jewellery are popular as Christmas and birthday gifts.
When I’m not making wedding accessories, I teach workshops in millinery, particularly in fascinator and silk flower making. I also offer custom workshops, craft parties and one-to-one sessions – see my Workshops and Events page for more details.
What have you got planned for the next 12 months?
My new-look website goes live on 15th September, which I’m very excited about. You can find me at Vintage Chic Wedding Fair in Leamington Spa, Chosen Wedding Fair in London and Quaint Queer Weird Wedding Fair in Brighton in the next few months.
I’m also working on a new collection inspired by myths and legends of the sea. Watch this space!
And finally, what or who inspires you and why?
I’m a total visual magpie – my design inspiration comes from all kinds of sources, from 19th century fairytale illustrations to contemporary designs by Rodarte or Balmain.
On a personal level, I’m inspired by my friends in the wedding industry and beyond. My 2017 collection designs, see my Shop are named after some of the strong, capable and brilliant women that have inspired me over the years.
All images courtesy of Madame B’s Boutique