Brides Up North

Real Wedding Recap Summer 2014: In Deep. A Real Wedding At Victoria Baths, Manchester – Laura & Nathan

June 24th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a break to redesign, review and recharge, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely.  

Usual service will recommence on Monday 7th July 2014,  but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far this year.  Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your Real Wedding was one of our top picks.

James Tracey Photography

Back in February when I blogged an interview with our wonderful Featured Supplier and ex copper, James Tracey Photography, I led the piece with an image of a beaming bride at a colourful altar and over on Facebook lots of you fell in love with her.  Later that week I featured Laura and Nathan’s fabulously cool and quirky swimming pool wedding (yes, I’ve never seen one of those before either!) in all it’s glory. 

This still has to be one of my favourites to date.

With images by James Tracey Photography. 

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

Laura says:  We got engaged in October 2013 in Saint-Cirq Lapopie (in the South of France). We were on our holiday with our six month old baby boy and Nathan got a sudden urge to ask me to marry him. It was a beautiful spot by the river. It wasn’t planned so he found a twig and tied it in a knot around my wedding finger.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

We have been together for 18 years (we met at school when we were 16!) and finally tied the knot on 27th May 2013 at Victoria Baths, Manchester. 

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

Victoria Baths is part of the restoration project. It was opened in 1906 as a swimming baths and Turkish baths.  The restoration of the building begin in 1995. It is a beautiful old building with ornate stain glass windows. One day they hope to restore the swimming pools themselves and open it up again to the public.

We actually got married in the old male swimming pool in the deep end!

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

We wanted to get married somewhere that was a little different and allowed us to do what we wanted.  Victoria Baths allows you to hire out the entire building and you are able to bring your own caterers, music and decorations in.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

We wanted the day to be very relaxed with a feel of a street party. No formalities so everyone could relax and have fun!  We chose a colour scheme of pale pink and green.

The bridesmaids wore pink dresses and the groom, best man and ushers wore pink ties.  The tiles of the swimming baths are green so we hung pink and green paper pom poms from the ceiling along with bunting.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

I wanted something every simple for my wedding dress. I visited Jane Bourvis in London after a friend recommended her. Jane owns a small shop in Notting Hill and as soon as you walk in you are greeted with antique lace hanging from the ceiling. Jane told me she had just restored some lace the night before. She dressed me in a pale cream slip and placed the lace petticoat over the top. It was stunning and a one off. I bought it within half an hour of walking into the shop. I just felt special. There was a story behind it too as an elderly lady in Scotland had found her mothers veil in the loft and that was what Jane used to create the dress – old Scottish lace.

James Tracey Photography

The bridesmaids each wore a lace dress which I bought from a beach side shop in Cape Town. I just saw them and knew they would match the dress and that each of the bridesmaids would like the style.

Nathan wore a tailored suit from A Suit That Fits. The best man and ushers wore their own suits with a pink tie.

James Tracey Photography

My friend has a beautiful old beetle called Gracie. He came to the hotel to pick me up (complete with a flat cap) and drove me to the baths.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

It was a family affair!  My cousin is a register so he married us and my other cousin works at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) so he arrange for four different bands to play:  a string quartet to walk down the aisle to, an acoustic guitar whist we drank fizz, a two piece acoustic band and a 9 piece disco band.  Amazing!

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

I carried a simple vintage style bouquet made by Manchester Flower Company.

James Tracey Photography #

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

I especially enjoyed the vows and turning around to see everybody we loved.

James Tracey Photography #

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

After the ceremony we arranged for a tour guide to show people around the building as it’s so historic with lots of amazing stories behind it.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

10 of my closest friends and family made cakes for the deserts. There were some amazing cakes ranging from carrot cake, lemon drizzle and early great tea muffins. Everyone just helped themselves.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

We had 45 children at the wedding so we had to provide entertainment. We hired two nanny’s to look after the babies and provided lots of toys. We hired a bouncy castle to go in the female pool and we created a cinema with a big screen and lots of popcorn and bean bags so the kids to watch a film. It was nice as the adults could have a rest and enjoy the fizz.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

At the end of the day we planned a big surprise for everyone. We didn’t know how well it would go down. We hired 150 headsets and held a silent disco in the main hall. At first everyone didn’t quite know what to make of it. By the end of the night everyone was dancing their hearts out. We had three different channels with different types of music. There was some crazy dancing going on.

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography

We went to the Lake District for a few days after the wedding and found cosy pubs to relax in.  Bliss!

James Tracey Photography

I kept sneaking away for a few minutes every now and again – either with Nathan or own my own to just catch my breath and smile. So my top tip for other Brides Up North would be that it’s nice to stop for a few minutes and reflect on things throughout the day itself.

James Tracey Photography

Congratulations Laura & Nathan!

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 James Tracey Photography

James Tracey Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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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