In bed with Jessica from Lace in the desert

6/29/14

In this industry, we love beautiful things and we love to create, make and inspire people around us. Jessica, founder of Lace in the Desert, a blog for all things weddings in the Middle East, is sharing her love for wedding inspiration, simplicity and beauty.

Coming in to Jessica’s home was such a lovely surprise. Her house is full of fun artifacts and inspirational items she’s gathered from different trips abroad. I felt so inspired being in her home and I can really see where her eye for classical and modern styling comes from. Jessica has an eye for beautiful photography and detailed styling, just have a look at her blog or at her own wedding invitations below which she designed and had printed herself.

Anything that spells fine art, photography and weddings is up my alley so I was super excited about our meet-up. Here’s a few questions I threw at Jessica.

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How tall are you?
5ft 2 and 1⁄2

How old are you?
29

What is a normal day in your life like?
There is no normal day, but I do start almost every day the same ~ cup of tea in hand, I climb back under the duvet for a few minutes of pinterest or instagram time.

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What is Lace in the Desert?
A Dubai wedding blog dedicated to bringing the best international and local wedding inspiration to the UAE. We also want to help brides find the very best wedding suppliers with our vendor directory. One of our most unique features is a free platform where brides can sell their wedding and bridesmaids dresses, there are already designer brands such as Versace and Vera Wang on there so brides looking on the dress hunt in the UAE can get themselves a designer dress at a bargain price.

Where does the name come from?
I wanted a name that brought together Dubai and weddings and Lace in the Desert just seemed to work.

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How did it all begin?
A short version of a long story….I moved back to the UK in 2011 after 2 years of doing the long distance thing to become an army wife in Wales for a year. During that time I was planning my own wedding and loved using blogs as a source of inspiration. When I came back to Dubai with my husband (no more long distance, yey!) I saw the gap in the market for Lace in the Desert. Once I realised that readers were engaged in the blog, I invested into making it look how it does today.

What are your favourite things to do on a weekend?
When I’m not brunching or boating (Dubai life is hard isn’t it), I just love to chill, spend time with my hub and cook a yummy meal to enjoy with a glass of wine or two.

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What are you goals for the coming year?
To keep expanding my brand, continue working with the best vendors in the UAE to create more styled shoots and push the boundaries of what we see here in Dubai, and if I manage to get the first publication on a Jose Villa wedding then I will know I’ve made it!

What do you believe makes a great blog?
Clean design, daily inspirational content, a community feeling and accessible and useful information.

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Do you feature all kinds of vendors on your blog or are you selective in choosing vendors that fit your brand?
I only work with and feature vendors that I genuinely love. I made a very strict choice to only deal with people and brands that I would honestly use myself because it’s important to me to ensure that Lace in the Desert’s signature style remains intact. As I’m trying to build my brand, I don’t think it would do myself any favours in the long term to promote people I’m not 100% sure about. The best thing is that vendors can be assured that even when I talk about them off the blog, I gush about them because I genuinely love and admire each one.

Describe your readers.
Stylish, visionaries, out to create a unique day for themselves that reflects who they are, young, vibrant, cool (I like to think anyway!) and in love with as much pretty as I am.

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Where do you gather inspiration from?
Everywhere. A cliché but so true. I follow the work of many talented photographers and event planners all over the world. Film photographers in particularly inspire me with the quality of their work and the way that they capture a shoot or wedding day. Closer to home I find the Dinner Club Girls incredibly inspiring, I adore places such as XVA Hotel and Comptoir for the uniqueness that they bring to Dubai and I think Alserkal is my new favourite area in Dubai, full of inspiration.

What is your ethnicity?
British born and bred with Scottish roots, although somebody did tell me the other day that I look Danish.

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What inspires you and what keeps you motivated?
I simply adore what I do which makes motivating myself very easy. Plus I really do feel like I’m on a mission to bring the very best wedding inspiration to the UAE. I’ve spoken to many wedding vendors who all agree that Dubai’s wedding industry is riding a growing wave of progress and change which is an incredibly exciting thing to be part of.

What should photographers think about when they submit work to you?
Think about whether your style of photography fits with my usual content. Images should be at least 900 px wide, individual with no watermarks. International photographers are always welcome as so many brides here are planning for weddings all over the world.

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What’s next in your life?
Goodness knows, I don’t like to plan too far ahead as you never know what will come your way. For the moment I can genuinely say that I love my life so I’m happy just living it.

What are your top wedding trend predictions for the next year?
We’ve seen a lot of romantic pastels over the last year and I think that will definitely continue. Many brides are shirking the traditional wedding breakfast for more casual options such as sharing platters, buffets and barbeques and I think this will start to see more quirky options for casual dining.

However, when it comes to your wedding day I don’t think that trends are something you should consider, creating a day that you absolutely love it far more important.

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Can you tell us a little about at a recent project you’re excited about?
My real brides! I wrote my post asking for real brides to come forward and write about their experiences on a complete whim. I wasn’t sure what to expect and I was amazed at the number of responses I had – I think I even jumped around the apartment for a few minutes. I am planning a few secrets events for them which hopefully will be great fun, but I’m mainly just so excited about creating a community with these brides and having the opportunity to share in their planning experiences.

They are all so different and have such different ideas which I love.

What’s your favourite mid-day go to snack?
Easiest question ever….crumpets!

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Who are your style icons?
I completely love Poppy Delevingne’s style, if I ever had to grace a red carpet I would want to do it in a Blake Lively kind of way (I wish), and strictly style speaking I think Gwyneth Paltrow pulls off some of the most wonderful classic looks.

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