THE KEY TO A SUCCESSFUL NEW LIFE IN FRANCE : Work As A Team
Image : Charlotte Wise at Soul Images Photography
Emma and John Willett of Brides in France never imagined all those years ago when they said, ” I do” that they would end up carving successful careers out of organising weddings in France themselves in years to come. Emma and John moved to France with their two children Matthew and Katie in 2011 and have been working hard ever since. Emma is a hairdresser by trade and quickly fell into wedding hair styling while John, from a business background has become something of an expert in online marketing. Her business, Brides in France offers brides to be a one stop shop to find all the services they need to get married in France. These include French wedding planners, wedding photographers, florists, hairstylists, make up artists and celebrants to name but a few.
“Because so many people move to France with plans to work from their new home, I have managed to find a talented group of entrepreneurs who have just the skills to make a French wedding perfect. We help each other and work with French suppliers to take the hassle out of translating for our English speaking customers .”
Images : Charlotte Wise at Soul Images Wedding Photography
Emma’s work as a wedding hairstylist in France takes her all over the country and to some of the most prestigious wedding venues in Europe. So big is the interest in French weddings that husband John has now joined the team at Brides in France to manage the busy social media profile that helps them get discovered by brides to be from as far afield as Asia and Australia.
Image : Charlotte Wise at Soul Images Wedding Photographer in France.
” I love my new role as Social Media and Commercial Manager and I get to work with Emma to build a business that fits in around family life. “
It’s working together in France that has allowed John and Emma to enjoy a fantastic lifestyle in the rustic wilds of rural France. And, despite the usual ups and downs of setting up home in a foreign country, helping others tie the knot in France has given them a business to be proud of and a happy family life as a result.
At home, John and Emma favour a relaxed French country cottage feel in their stone farmhouse which is tucked away in the wooded valleys of the Vienne countryside. Away from the glamour of the Cote d’Azur where they are often found working in Chateaux and Hotels, the Willetts like a relaxed French farmhouse style at home. Many of their furnishings came with them from their town house in the UK; well-loved leather armchairs, Scandinavian inspired painted wooden furniture and little keepsakes to remind them of friends and family back home.
” We always wanted to live in the countryside and we have so much space here. When you’ve got dogs, kids and a business all under one roof, you have to be realistic about what you can achieve style wise. We’re happy with our look, it’s home and we love it. “
Emma and John’s home is full of cheerful décor, some French inspired, some British. What shines through room after room are their sunny personalities and absolute passion for what they do.
Above : Natural oak kitchen cupboards create a warm ambience in the large family kitchen.
The farmhouse kitchen is at the heart of Emma and John’s home, with a toasty woodburning stove and island with built in cooking.
Above : Emma cooks up her favourite carrot and ginger soup with croutons with home grown vegetables.
In contrast with the natural wood and leather furnishings, a Gustavian painted clock stands proud in the spacious reception room between the office and the kitchen, along with French themed ornaments like this colourful 2cv, rustic storm lantern and Emma’s French white porcelain set.
” There are great views from every window upstairs and I love waking up to that before heading down to our shared office to start work each morning. “
Above : Emma loves the vintage French look and displays her favourite pieces on a lovely painted dresser in the hall.
Both John and Emma enjoy the freedom that running a business from home offers but admit they love nothing more than escaping to the family conservatory in the evening to have a glass of French wine and watch the sun go down together.
” It’s important to know when to turn the laptop off and spend time as a family. Having a separate office makes that easier but it takes real discipline I can tell you! “
Hard at work, the Brides in France team organising photoshoots at potential new wedding venues and road testing items of wedding jewellery. The home office is modern, light and airy, complete with a hand painted logo of their French wedding brand.
To find out more about getting married in France or to speak to Emma about bridal hair and makeup, you can contact the team through the Brides in France Website.
Thanks for showing us around your beautiful home Emma and John and we hope you have a fantastic wedding season in 2016.