Brides Up North

Take Your Marks! A Real Wedding In The North East – Nick & Sarah

February 25th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Need a Monday morning endorphin boost?  I’m still on a high after yesterday’s amazing Brides Up North Bridal Bonanza (what a day people!) but I think it might take more than coffee, toast and a banana to get me started today.  So what’s better than a burst of colour and fun to get the week off to a cracking start?  With images by Ruth Mitchell Photography, Sarah and Nick’s “Wedding Chase” is brimming with energy, personal touches, DIY details and love.  Get set…

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Sarah & Nick from Sarah MacVean on Vimeo.

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Sarah says:  We got engaged on a weekend to Keswick in the Lake District. We were on a hike up one of the mountains and I was walking ahead. I heard Nick shout me back to look at something. He had painted a stone with a poem and placed it on the top of a cairn so when I found it and read it I turned around back to him and he was on one knee. It was perfect. It was still such an amazing surprise.

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We got married on 21 July 2012 at Hurworth Methodist Church, with the reception at Michelin rated Bay Horse.  I grew up in Hurworth and we chose the church as it was where I used to go as a child and always knew it was where I wanted to get married. We chose The Bay Horse as we wanted an outdoor feel and didn’t want to be inside a hotel all day. We were able to have a marquee and use the gardens so it was perfect – plus the food is totally amazing. It was great that the guests were able to walk from the church to the reception as Hurworth is such a pretty village. We also knew there would be some fantastic scenery for the photos.

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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We are both very keen runners so we hosted our own Wedding Chase (!) and we teamed that with a country fair feel. Most of all we wanted it to be relaxed and be more fun than too formal with lots of colour. 

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I love bright colours and originally we had chosen pink as a colour base, but while looking for bridesmaids dresses we found some amazing green ones (my favourite colour) which all the girls loved although we teamed it with pink and blue for decorations and flowers.

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I’m not really used to dressing up so to be honest I found dress shopping quite stressful. As I am small a lot of the dresses didn’t fit in the right areas and were so long. I must have tried on about thirty dresses by the time I found my dress.  After trying on a few plainer dresses the lady in the shop sensed that I wanted something a bit different and brought out ‘the one’. It was very princessy and floaty and different from the others I’d tried and fitted much better. I felt special in it and my mum and bridesmaid cried so I knew it was a winner.  I’m glad I didn’t go down the safe dress route as I felt great in it on the day.

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The girls wore full length green dresses from Monsoon which were floaty and complimented my dress. The boys wore dark blue hired suites from Woven in Durham, they also custom made Nick’s suit which was pin stripe blue and looked amazing.

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The minister – Andrew – did a beautiful service and as my father had passed away last Christmas he included some lovely words about him during the service. While we were signing the register we put up pictures of Nick and I growing up with music in the background which kept guests entertained.

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I actually made my own bouquets for me and the girls as love to do crafty thing. I was really pleased with the flowers. I also attached my Dad’s ring to my bouquet so I felt like he was there with us.

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Unknown to us members of our running club did a guard of honour when we came out of the church which was awesome.

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We really wanted to personalise the day and we had so many special touches.  We had race numbers on the back of guests chairs instead of place name cards, which most guests ended up wearing by the end of the night and we gave all the guests race medals as favours.

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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We asked our guests or their favourite songs and played them all during the day.  We were originally going to have a band but eventually decided on a disco as we love a good dance. It was great and perfect for the day. We also added a few games on the tables, had bubble machines and piñatas and of course a limbo pole. We did a quiz on how well the guests knew us which was fun, and also had a sweet table with personalised bags for guests to take home

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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We knew we wanted something a bit different and didn’t want to go down the traditional white cake route. I have a love of baking and cake decorating and decided to do the cake myself. My mum made the fruit part and I made the cupcakes and we decorated them with lots of bright colours to match out colour scheme. It certainly had the wow factor and got lots of notice.

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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It’s so hard to pick a favourite part of the day. Being there with our closest friends and family and having them spend such as special occasion with us was certainly one. It was great to see everyone smiling all day and enjoying themselves. It was awesome being introduced into the reception as Mr and Mrs Watson. I loved the ceremony and saying our vows as our minister made it so personal to us, it’s important to remember that is the part which is about just the two of you, after that it all goes crazy. My mum also made a beautiful speech on behalf of her and my dad which I know was hard for her but she did amazing. I loved every minute of the day, especially knowing I was married to Nick.

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We spent our wedding night at Clowbeck – a lovely bed and breakfast in Hurworth and the following day went on a mini-moon to the Lakes for the week after the wedding and us being us tagged a 24 hour running race onto the end of it. We asked for contributions to our proper honeymoon from guests and are planning on getting away next year.

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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My top tips for other Brides Up North would be that I know it’s a cliché but just enjoy the day, it really does go so fast. Invest in a good photographer, ours was great, we also hired a videographer (Sarah McVean) who captured so much of the day that we hadn’t seen and it was great to watch the ceremony again.

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Don’t over invite, we were lucky and didn’t feel pressure from family to invite people we didn’t want which we were glad of, you spend so much of the day meeting and greeting everyone, so make sure it’s spent with people you really want there.

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Pick good ushers, ours were great and ended up doing so much, and all the jobs behind the scenes.

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Most importantly don’t sweat the small stuff. For example I forgot to wear my bracelet and Nick forgot to wear his button hole, neither of which stopped it from being the best day we could imagine.

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Ruth Mitchell Photography

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Congratulations Sarah & Nick!

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Would you like to see your own Real Wedding featured here?  Here’s how

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Ruth Mitchell Photography

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about the author

Julia Braime
Former lawyer and bride to be Julia founded Brides Up North in 2010 with a chip on her shoulder. Frustrated by the poor Northern presence in glossy bridal magazines and online, she decided to do something about it herself. Astounded by the rapid growth of her blog and brand, Julia now manages Brides Up North’s online content alongside their busy wedding exhibition season, industry events and related commissions. And she’s always, always, got a new project on the go…

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