May 29th, 2014 | Julia Braime
Gemma and Ivan started out with an all white theme. That didn’t last long.
Instead, this fun couple opted for bold brights, glam detail, fabulous florals and lots of entertaining extras.
Images by Phil Nunez Photography.
Gemma says: Ivan asked me to marry him at T3, London Heathrow just prior to boarding on holiday to Mauritius! We actually met at T2 four years earlier after meeting on the internet. I was refusing to meet him and he knew I was flying out on business so just turned up, really glad he did now!
We said I do at Newton Hall, Newton-by-the-Sea on 15th March 2014.
Northumberland has been a second home to me since a child as we have a family holiday home in Alnwick, so when we stumbled across Newton Hall whilst supping cocktails in Mauritius shortly after getting engaged it seemed fate.
We had to wait a few months before we could make the 300 mile journey up north to see the real thing so anticipation was high on the day.
We looked at other venues but for us nothing else came close to ticking the boxes – the location, the quirky style, the superior service & attention to detail, it felt completely right.
Our theme developed over the months, but from the offset we wanted something a bit different. We didn’t want pretty: we wanted full on, bold, fun, glam, quirky & wow. We wanted a wedding that reflected our taste and likes.
We found a Liberty print fabric that we fell in love with – we used this as basis for our colours scheme and the fabric itself for custom made ties & handkerchiefs. We also used the stag silhouette from Newton Hall as the stationery theme.
We started out with an all white colour palette and decided to turn it all on its head as the theme developed using bold colours: pinks, blues, purples mixed with neutral colours and textures.
We really loved the idea of having a fun & colourful glam theme, especially at the weather in March was likely to be dull.
I chose a BIG dress – which was a complete shock. I set out thinking slinky & plain and landed up very fitted with a massive flamenco like bottom with a huge train.
I used Mariposa, a small bridal boutique close to home. They encouraged me to try different styles which was really helpful. Being a size 14 I felt nervous that everything would look awful but they were really good at choosing flattering styles.
In the end I wanted to wear something I would never had dreamt of, or have occasion to wear again.
My bridesmaid wore an aubergine dress from House of Fraser’s own collection. Again we didn’t want a traditional dress, we wanted glam: it had a beautiful metal collar and a thigh high split with towering LK Bennett heels. Having just a single bridesmaid made the choices super easy.
We hired navy tails for the groom’s party and teamed them with duck egg linen waistcoats. Ivan wore the Liberty print tie, and the rest of the party ruches with Liberty print handkerchiefs. They looked super smart but edgy.
Amy from Rose & Bird did our make-up and totally nailed what I wanted from the start. Kara from Kara Scott Hair catered for our hair needs. I didn’t have any specific ideas on hair so she worked through lots of ideas with me which was great. Both Amy & Kara we brilliant company on the day putting everyone at ease…and the make-up & hair lasted all day despite the crazy winds on the beach!
Phil Nunez was our photographer and such an important part of the day. We wanted natural pictures, no posed formal shots – this was really important for us. Phil’s work is incredible, he gets the most beautiful of shots in the most simple of surroundings, such a talent. When we saw the results of the pre-wedding shoot we knew we’d hit gold.
I carried a hand tied bouquet of mainly deep and hot pink David Austin roses with elements of flowers being used in the table centres such as a splash sensation, lisisanthus, freesia & thistles to link to the buttonholes.
My favourite part of the day has to be walking back down the aisle as Mrs Scott under the raining confetti, to the whooping & cheering of friends & family – unforgettable.
I had requested that the ladies go for fantastical headwear, keeping in line with the bold & glam theme. Newton Hall installed a hat line which we hung messages from – I loved this idea.
The Finishing Touch Company catered for all our flower and decorative needs. From the start Charlotte was great – lots of ideas and patience! Her work really did make our day. I actually cried when I saw our wedding I saw the rooms. I’m so glad we went for it with the flowers.
We gave our guests a tea towel as a favour. A designer friend helped us create the design and then we had them printed on natural calico
Our table flowers were huge displays of roses in pinks of different shades, thistles, pink lisianthus, pink freesia, splash sensation, muscari, veronica, ranunculus, pink anemone and bouvardia – they looked spectacular!
We hired in a photo booth from Snaparazzi and this really made the evening. The guests loved it and the pictures are a fantastic memory.
We also hired in big illuminated letters from Coco Luminaire which we used around the venue – such a cool backdrop.
For our evening entertainment wee hired in Func on the Rocks – we chose them by blind listening and they stood out a mile. They were fabulous on the night and totally played to the audience. We had so many compliments on the band.
One of my closest friends Jojo made our wedding cake – inspiration came from a wedding show we visited. She decided to create the wedding cake as our wedding gift and she certainly delivered. Jojo can barely cook an evening meal so this was a massive challenge and she delivered 1000%… even if she did leave half of it accidentally on the train to Edinburgh, only just getting it back in the nick of time!
After the wedding we headed out to Marrakech for a mini-moon and are booked for two weeks in Bangkok & Phuket in the Autumn.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to have the day you want, don’t worry about what you think your guests expect. It’s such a monumental occasion, so make sure you research your photographer – their work will be your lasting physical memory for decades to come.
Congratulations Gemma & Ivan!
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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…