Nicki Macfarlane, designer of the bridesmaids' dresses for The Royal Wedding, picks her favourite sites.

Nicki Macfarlane is one of the UK’s leading designers of beautiful bridesmaid, flower girl, pageboy and First Holy Communion outfits. A year ago, Nicki hit the headlines when she was given the honour of creating the young bridesmaids’ dresses for The Duchess of Cambridge.

Designing the dresses for The Royal Wedding was the culmination of thirty years experience for Nicki, who started making bespoke creations on a freelance basis. In 2005, she was asked by a client to design bridesmaids’ dresses for twenty-two children, it was at this point that Nicki realised that there was a gap in the market for bespoke, quality occasion wear for children and the brand ‘Nicki Macfarlane’ was born.

In the intervening years, Nicki has become highly regarded in the bridal industry for her exquisite designs and use of the best quality fabrics. In 2010 she successfully launched her first ready to wear collection, and is now available in John Lewis, Harrods, many independent bridal boutiques and


Sponge - A fantastic gift idea – who wouldn’t love to receive a cake in the post? My daughters and I often surprise each other with a delicious cake and, if you can’t make up your mind about which flavour to have, the baby sponges are great – my grandchildren particularly love these!

The Cheeseshed - This is the perfect site for delicious English cheese and wonderful gift boxes, which come beautifully presented. They specialise in artisan West Country cheese and their recommendations are always spot on. They also make the most beautiful cheese wedding cakes –they would make an amazing statement at any wedding.

Brides Magazine - There are so many brilliant wedding blogs these days that it was hard to pick just one. The Brides blog is updated daily and has all the latest wedding trends, news and celebrity weddings – all stuff I need, and love to know about.

The Business of Fashion - In my business, I like to know what’s happening in the fashion world and this site gives me everything I need; from future trends to interviews with key people in the industry - there’s always something of interest.

Achica - This site has great discounts on designer products, from furniture to jewellery. It’s my daily addiction to check which sales are coming up – it’s always worth a browse.

toptable - This site is very good for getting a reliable review of a restaurant, which is especially useful if I’m at a wedding exhibition in an unfamiliar town. You can also book a table directly on the site, often at a discounted rate, which is a great service.

24 April 2012