GEMMA Rimmington is winning awards right, left and centre… and she’s made up about it.

The 37-year-old was named the region’s Makeup and Hair Specialist of the Year 2018 at the English Wedding Awards, following on from her win the previous year when she was Specialist Freelance Makeup Artist of the Year at The English Hair and Beauty Awards.

What makes the most recent award even more special is that it was her loyal clients who nominated her.

“So many of my occasion makeup clients end up being my brides or recommend me to their friends and family and it genuinely makes my day when I receive their messages, reviews and photos after their booking with me,” says Gemma, from Guisborough. “It was an amazing end to a great year.”

Not that she has any time to rest on her laurels. Her excellent reputation means she has wedding booked two years in advance and spring is one of the busiest times.

Although she is based in the North-East, Gemma works her magic around the UK. As well as glamming up her regulars and making brides feel their best on their big day, she also works with celebrity clientele, magazines and fashion brands in London.

“I pride myself on quality and client care and take extra attention to the small details that create a flawless finish,” she says. “I am trained in all aspects of makeup artistry from bridal, beauty and special effects to creative work, so I can create a diverse range of looks. My bridal bookings have ranged from classic to vintage to Halloween brides wanting Day of the Dead makeup!”

She is a firm believer that anything goes – “whatever makes a bride feel her very best is what I aim for” – but she does advise brides against following trends when they’re planning a wedding as they can change so quickly. “What is fashionable now will not be fashionable even just a year down the line. You can't beat classic red carpet glamour, and it’s timeless, too.”

Gemma’s own wedding took place in 2012, when she married personal trainer Neil. “We didn't intend to have a big formal wedding, but it soon escalated and we got married at the Cross Butts Stables in Whitby,” she says. “We partied into the early hours in a beautiful marquee. The weeks leading up to the wedding we had unseasonal daily torrential rain and I became obsessed with checking the weather forecast. On the day it was boiling hot with gorgeous sunshine – someone was definitely looking after us.”


  • Choose your suppliers carefully. If you want a specific supplier, book them in advance. Many suppliers, including me, are booked two years in advance. Don't leave your big day to chance, get them booked.
  • When booking a makeup artist, it is important to book a bridal specialist. This is one of the biggest events of life - you really want to look and feel your very best. I cannot stress enough the importance of researching, reading client reviews, looking at bridal portfolios, talking to your supplier before booking to answer any questions you have. Cheap is not always cheerful. Once you have spent the money on the wedding, your photos will be how you cherish your memories so don't look back at your images with any regrets.
  • Makeup trials are important for the bride and also for anyone in the bridal party who might be nervous, fussy or have problematic skin. The point of a trial is to choose the look and products for the big day. A professional makeup artist should ask you about your skin, your usual routine, how you usually wear your makeup etc to ensure that the correct products are used on the day to provide not only the desired look, but also longevity.
  • Honesty is the best policy. If you have any concerns about your makeup on the day, tell your makeup artist. Makeup is very personal. We rely on communication from you to help us to work with you to make you feel your best.
  • Skin care is so important. Makeup can work wonders, but ultimately skin is the base to creating the flawless look so start a regime in the months leading up to the wedding – facials, regular moisturising, gentle exfoliation and lots of water to plump out the skin and make your eyes sparkly.
  • Choose the overall look you want based on how you feel yourself. I meet so many bridal clients who worry about what others will think of their makeup style, hair choice, dress etc. A bride should feel confident and fabulous and excited to get ready on their wedding day and not panic over other people's opinions.

Baked with passion

CAKE maker extraordinaire Emily-Kate Davies considered careers in astrophysics and law before taking a role as a wedding planner at Doxford Barns. But it was when she designed and made her sister’s wedding cake in July 2017 and then her own a few months later that her creative streak got the better of her.

“I just fell in love and knew I had to do this as my job,” says the 24-year-old, who went to Barnard Castle School and lives in Northumberland. “I created my social media pages to see if I could make it into my career and the orders just kept coming. Chemily’s Cakes was launched in August 2018 and it seems she’s hit on a recipe for success – her order book is already bursting at the seams for 2019 and she says she’s living the dream.

“Cakes are not just something that are eaten and then forgotten about – they are for celebrating those moments of our lives that we want to remember,” she says. “The amount of thought that people put into choosing their cake design, not just for weddings, but even for a mother’s birthday or a child’s first birthday, is wonderful to see, and the fact that I am able to be part of that is simply enough for me to love every aspect of my business.”

Although she imagines people will be surprised by the revelation, Emily admits she is completely obsessed with Marvel Superheroes. “So you can imagine my delight when a request came through for a three-tiered Marvel Avengers Cake. I was given free rein to run with my imagination. From Hulk’s fist bursting through the top, to Hawkeye’s arrow piercing through the middle, I was in love.”

It’s not surprising Emily decided on something creative as a career – it’s in the genes. When she married at the end of 2017 and decided just before the wedding that she didn’t like her chosen dress, her mother Diane designed and made her a beautiful bohemian laced wedding dress in a matter of days. “She did everything for the wedding, my very own superhero,” laughs Emily.


I: @chemilyscakes