December 8th, 2017 | Aislinn Thompson
Our final real wedding of the week shows the magic that can be achieved in next to no time, as Jemma and Paul planned their day in an eye-popping 12 weeks!
Despite the clock ticking, the couple secured a fabulous new venue and then spent time getting the personal touches, dining and décor just right.
To complement their show-stopper of a venue (just take a look at those interiors!) Jemma and Paul chose an abundance of glowing candles, on-trend white and green floral displays and opulent metallic touches – all of which we adore! Add to this a fine ‘his and hers’ feast and personal messages to each and every guest and we think you’ve got a pretty damn special big day!
With photography by Kazooieloki Photography.
jemma says: We got engaged in November 2016 at Sensatori Tenerife – Paul booked the trip as a birthday present and then proposed as a surprise on the first night.
We decided to plan our wedding in a fairly short time frame (12 weeks!) so we picked a date that the venue could accommodate – 21st October 2017 – and that would give us enough time to get everything sorted.
We chose The Highfield House and Grounds, Driffield, East Yorkshire; it was the first venue we looked at and we both loved it. We would be the first people to get married there, as they hadn’t even got their wedding licence when we booked! Ellen, the house manager, couldn’t do enough to help and was a pleasure to deal with throughout. We picked an elegant, glamorous theme with accents of gold, which we felt really suited the venue – lots of glassware, candles and white/cream roses and greenery.
I chose a fitted lace dress with a fishtail and lace straps. I instantly knew this dress was the one when I tried it on.
Paul wore a navy blue three-piece suit, as did the groomsmen, and my bridesmaids wore Showcase dresses from Debenhams.
Our photographers, Richard and Christine from Kazooieloki, were amazing! So professional yet friendly and we barely noticed they were there. We had a pre-wedding shoot and I was really nervous but they soon put me at ease. The photos speak for themselves – beyond words! We could not be happier with them. They have a great eye for catching all the details, which I love, and you get to see all the parts of the day you missed at the time. The photos really are a story of our day and looking back at them really is like going back through the whole day – fabulous! We’ve had lots of people tell us they are the best wedding photos they’ve ever seen!
My brother-in-law Kris Knight kindly filmed the ceremony and speeches for us.
Our flowers were from Rafters, who were brilliant. We chose a mixture of white and cream roses, greenery and other neutral flowers. Rafters dressed the stairs and house throughout, which looked incredible – roses, greenery, succulents and candles in various forms. We had submerged roses with floating candles as the centrepieces and single stem roses with more candles and gold crystals on the tables. I could not recommend Rafters highly enough; Vicki was amazing: I was ‘wowed’ and we had lots of comments on how fabulous the flowers were.
The favours were caramel gold-dusted buttons imbedded with a British Heart Foundation heart, with seeds for the girls and gold fortune cookies for the boys. I wrote an individual message to each guest on their favour/name label, which was commented on by many – I wanted to do this to make it a bit more personal. We bought the children activity packs and sweets.
The cake was a simple designed, four-tiered ivory sponge cake with gold lustre and fresh flowers (provided by Rafters). It was made by Claire Daniels of Cakes by Claire in Howden.
For the wedding breakfast, we had canapés of mini fish and chips, roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, beetroot and goat’s cheese tarts and filo prawns. For the main, we had Mr and Mrs sharing boards, as Paul and I have such different tastes. So we had one board that reflected me – antipasti style with olives, breads and oils, sunblush tomatoes with feta, salted almonds, and roasted vegetable lattice with deli meats (salami, pastrami, etc.) – and one that reflected Paul with pork pie, Yorkshire ham, sautéed new potatoes, and chicken liver paté with breads, etc. People could pick whatever they liked. Dessert was cheesecake with berries and cream, again served as a sharing platter.
For the music, we had the Quadraphonics String Quartet from Huddersfield, during the ceremony and wedding breakfast, who were incredible. We also had a pianist – Antoine Robinson – for the cocktails and evening guests’ arrival, which made a lovely atmosphere during the change from day to night. Then we had DJ Richard Acklam of Track Back Disco for the evening reception.
On our honeymoon we went to the LUX resort in South Ari Atoll in the Maldives. It really was paradise and the most amazing place I’ve been to; it’s as good as the pictures show – crystal blue waters, white sands and pure luxury!
My favourite part of the day was the ceremony, with the candles lit, fire roaring and all our favourite people. It was truly magical!
My top tip to other Brides Up North is that you don’t have to have years to plan your wedding. Although I probably wouldn’t recommend planning a wedding in 12 weeks (a bit longer would have been nice!) our wedding shows it can be done and still be your amazing day. I found the short time frame meant I had to be decisive and not change my mind! I also kept telling myself not to get too upset by some things not going plan – after all, it should be a happy occasion that you love. And it really was!
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Aislinn has a background in journalism, having filled all manner of publishing roles from editor to copywriter to feature writer. She is a former wedding photographer who ran her own business with her husband Michael. Together, they have travelled as far as Australia to photograph a client’s wedding (and spent all their earnings on a campervan trip up the Aussie coast!). Aislinn left wedding photography behind to take on the biggest commitment of her life as mummy to her young son Tom. She has been a bride, bridesmaid and even best woman (she has the speech to prove it!), which is almost all angles covered!
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