Brides Up North

Real Wedding Recap Winter 2013: Low Key Lovely. Pronovias For A Real Wedding In Manchester –Nichola & Neil

December 27th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the team take a break until to rest and recharge for what’s set to be the biggest and best year yet at Brides Up North HQ, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding pretty.

 

Usual service will recommence on 2nd January 2014,  but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings in 2013.  Drop in every day for the very, very prettiest wedding inspiration and if you are a Brides Up North bride, to see if your Real Wedding was one of our top picks.

 

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What Nichola and Neil’s Real Wedding lacks in fiddly detail, it makes up for class.  I love their low key yet expertly styled celebration in the North’s capital of cool.  This is how it’s done, people.

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With images by Adam Riley Photography and video by Unforgettable Memories.

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Nichola says:  We got engaged in August 2010 in Sicily. We had taken a trip to Mount Etna to watch the sunset. We watched the sunset together and then Neil asked me to marry him producing the most gorgeous pearl and diamond ring

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We had a Catholic ceremony at St.Mary’s Church, Levensulme (our local church) followed by a reception at the Radisson Edwardian in Manchester City Centre on 6th April 2013.

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Having both grown up in Manchester we wanted a wedding that really reflected our love of the city. Neil is an architect so the venue was really important to us. We had quite a large wedding as we are both from big Irish families and have big groups of friends we have grown up with so finding a venue we loved that was big enough was a struggle.

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When we walked into the Radisson at a wedding fair we knew it was perfect. It was the right size and it had character to it that other venues just didn’t have.  I work in customer service and being a 5 star hotel knew that we would get first class service which was the top of my priority list.

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We had two key themes for the day, pearls and lace from a decoration point of view but also Manchester and Music.

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The Radisson was once a music venue (The Lesser Free Trade Hall) and Neil loves music so we created invitations that looked like gig tickets, our table gift was a CD of music from artists that had played at the Free Trade Hall and the table names were all artist that had played at the venue.

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I wanted to keep the decorations as low key as possible as I really wanted to do these myself. I collected glass jars for months with the help of family and friends and we filled them with pearls and candles and covered them in lace. I bought hessian to make runners for the table and for around some of the jars too. We really wanted everything to feel personal and ‘us’ so the invites, table plans, place names and order of service were all designed and created by us.

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We kept everything quite neutral. My dress was ivory and the bridesmaids’ dresses matched too. The stationary was all created using brown card to match the hemp.

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I choose a Pronovias dress from the Bridal Path in Althrincham. I must have gone to nearly 10 shops and always fell in love with a dress in each one but never committed to buying them.

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When I tried this dress on I knew it was the one, the lace was amazing and I really wanted lace in the dress. I loved the detail on the straps and waistline and adored the way the skirt fell.

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The bridesmaids wore gorgeous lace dresses in the same colour as mine so they were very classic and they looked amazing next to my dress. I bought the dresses from Marks and Spencer as we didn’t want to spend huge amounts of money on ‘typical’ bridesmaids dresses that had no character.

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The men’s suits were from Groom in Wilmslow. We didn’t want a traditional tails/morning suit as when we looked at these the fabric was stiff and stuffy. We had wanted Navy all along as Neil has a lovely navy suit at home and the colour looks great on him. We had been to a lot of places looking at suits but the minute we walked in groom we saw the perfect suit. The material was lovely, clearly great quality, and the accessories were perfect for the colour scheme.

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We used Knutsford Bloom for the flowers. I wanted to bring in some spring colours in the flowers as everything else was so neutral and Bridget was brilliant helping us pick and the flowers were amazing on the day.

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I carried a medium hand tied bouquet with gorgeous yellows, pinks and blue to bring some colour to the day and tie in the suits.  The bridesmaids carried smaller versions of my bouquet.

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The special touches for us were the personal side of things, making all the stationery and decorations. Picking all the church readings, prayers and hymns ourselves meant we picked things that really meant something to us as a couple and not just standard wedding words

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My favourite part of the day was getting to say I do and finally marry Neil (after nearly 10 years together) with all our friends and family there to watch.

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We didn’t want to spend too much money on transport for ourselves on the day so we only booked one vintage cream car that could take the wedding party ahead of my Dad and Me. Then after the ceremony Neil and I took the car while the guests travelled in two vintage double decker buses to the hotel. Our photographer jumped on the buses to take some pictures of all the guests and really captured the atmosphere of the day.

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Our photographer was Adam Riley a reportage style photographer. We both agreed we didn’t want anything too posed on the day (apart from the family shots for the mums!) and photography was really important to us. Adam was an amazing choice and we were so happy with what he created for us. He captured the day in a way we could not have imagined and everyone has said how unique and fantastic the pictures are. The hard part now comes in picking which ones to put in the album!

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We wanted some time for just me and Neil to walk around some of the important places in Manchester that held a place in our hearts to have some pictures captured, Adam was so on board with this idea and had met Neil in the week before the wedding to walk around to the different spots and work out a plan for the day.

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We had decided not to have a video on the day due to budget but Neil’s mum planned a surprise for us and got the details of a videographer, Craig at Unforgettable Memories Films. She told Neil about the surprise and he met with Craig ahead of the wedding to talk everything through. When Craig turned up at the house the morning of the wedding it was such a shock and I couldn’t have been happier.

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For the cake we used Richard’s Cakes. My father, sister and myself all have a gluten free diet so we needed someone who could cater to this. We had decided to have individual cakes as dessert also so wanted something that looked like a dessert. The cakes were beautiful and so tasty.

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Having a big Irish crowd and also lots of friends who love to party at the wedding meant that the entertainment was really important to us. We choose a local DJ, Andy Murphy, and a local Irish band, The Last Drop.

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We know Andy well and he was fantastic, he came round to the house in the run up to the wedding to talk through how things would run on the night. Andy really knows how to pick songs to keep the crowd happy. We were struggling with a first dance choice as Neil is so into his music but not big on dancing! We settled on The Stone Roses – This Is The One. It went down a storm.

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The band were great and worked brilliantly with Andy to make sure everything ran smoothly and the dance floor was always busy.

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We went to America for three weeks on our honeymoon. We really wanted the trip of a lifetime. We started in Vegas and travelled to the west coast from Yosemite down to San Diego stopping at lots of places on the way.  It was the most amazing three weeks we could have had.

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My top tips for other Brides Up North would be to make the day personal to you. It will help you have the day you want and its great when everyone you love has a good time because of what you plan.

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Make sure you take some time for the two of you, its hard but you will love having sometime taking it all in. We had that when we went of for pictures and I am so glad we did as the day flew by so quick.

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Congratulations Nichola & Neil!

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Want to see your own Real Wedding on these pretty pages?  Here’s how!

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Adam Riley 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…

learn more about Julia Braime