October 16th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
Today we’re sharing the beautiful wedding of Chelsea and Ian – a celebration of fairy tale proportions wholly inspired by the magic of stories such as Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz.
Sealing their ‘happily ever after’ moment at Lancashire venue, Eaves Hall, Chelsea and Ian chose a delicate colour palette of dusky pinks and creams to suit their romantic theme and create a dreamy, whimsical vibe to their big day.
Details-wise, we love the hand-drawn illustrations depicting the stories Chelsea so loves to define each table, and the handmade biscuits as favours, each in a design straight out of a story book. Chelsea even created really thoughtful welcome bags for all the guests who stayed over, containing locally sourced treats and information about the area so they could make the most of their stay.
Of course, a fairy tale just wouldn’t be complete without a beautiful princess – and Chelsea is glowing and gorgeous in a dramatic Justin Alexander number with a cathedral-length train, illusion back and pretty beaded detailing around the neck and waistline.
With images by Madison Picture.
chelsea says: We got engaged on Christmas Eve in 2015. I still lived at home at the time. We were watching Christmas films in our festive PJs and sipping prosecco when Ian said he had an early Christmas present for me. He presented me with a little box that said “10 reasons why I love you” on the front. Inside there were ten cards each saying something different, such as “you’re beautiful”, “you make me smile”, etc. The last card said, “Will you marry me?” I looked up and he was down on one knee with the most beautiful engagement ring.
We got married on 29th May 2018. We wanted to get married in half term as I’m a teacher but it turns out that it didn’t matter in the end because I was on maternity leave having had a baby girl six months earlier.
Our venue was Eaves Hall, Clitheroe, and we had exclusive use over two days for both the ceremony and reception. We chose it for its wow factor; it was everything we wanted in a venue. Grand and rustic!
I wanted the theme to be based on stories and fairy tales: our own ‘happily ever after’. I love reading all things fairy tale and wanted a romantic theme. Colour-wise, we chose to go for a range of soft pinks (dusky, blush, etc.) and natural creams and whites. Dusky pink is my favourite colour and I wanted colours that would feel romantic and whimsical to go with our fairy tale theme. Plus, all my bridesmaids were blonde, so the colours suited them.
I chose a Sincerity dress from Justin Alexander, which was A-line shaped and made from satin with a cathedral train. It was the perfect combination of real bridal and whimsical, which is what I wanted. I felt like a bride when I put it on and fell in love with the dramatic train.
Ian wore a grey suit hired from Debenhams with a tweed waistcoat and tie. The groomsmen wore matching suits but with tweed bowties instead.
My bridesmaids’ dresses were bought online from Little Mistress. They were full-length in a floaty Grecian style and dusky/rose pink in colour. They had lace and beading around the middle and on the straps. The flower girls wore ivory knee-length dresses with a lace top.
We had our hair and makeup done by Manchester-based Jodie A Smith.
Our photographer was Madison Picture and we’d highly recommend them: two lovely men who really made us feel at ease, weren’t intrusive and were genuinely interested in us, our wedding and getting the best pictures. They were fab! Plus, the pictures turned out just perfectly.
Our videographer was Sands Video. We’d highly recommend him too as he was super friendly, though we didn’t even realise he was there half the time. The video is amazing – he captured all the best bits.
My bouquet was a rustic arrangement of handpicked and tied flowers, such as prints roses, lily of the valley, hydrangeas and ranunculus, in dusky and blush pinks. They were tied with a soft pink and ivory silk trail. The Flower Shop in Clitheroe did all our flowers and table centrepieces, plus the ceremony flowers. Charlotte was amazing from our first consultation and captured what I wanted perfectly. I was so happy with the way it all turned out.
To decorate the venue we had similar flowers to my bouquet with a rustic feel. They were placed in jars of different sizes on the tables. We also had mercury tea lights dotted around and wooden logs to stand the jars on. The top table was a mixture of jars, tea lights and a long wooden log with lots of rustic, handpicked flowers to decorate it.
Our table plan was an old door decorated with rustic flowers and, for our table names, we had hand-drawn illustrations of the classic stories each table was named after and a quote based on love and relationships to go alongside it. Themes included Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, The Wizard of Oz and The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.
For the favours, I had handmade biscuits that were themed for each table (e.g. Winnie the Pooh’s face, the Mad Hatter’s hat, Dorothy’s shoe). I also did welcome bags for all the guests who stayed containing locally sourced goods such as Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls from Wigan, Blackpool rock, Chorley cakes and also local information.
The cake was a three-tiered drip cake with white chocolatier ganache frosting with strawberry Lindt balls, white choc fingers, Bueno, Milky Bar buttons and strawberry meringues. We had one tier of Victoria sandwich, one toffee and one lemon. It was made by Claire Louise Cakes – she was fab and the cake tasted and looked amazing.
For the meal, we opted for canapés and a traditional wedding breakfast: guests had a choice of three starters and mains and two puddings. For the starter, we had ham hock terrine, leek and potato soup or pork belly. The choices for the main course were sirloin of beef, roast breast of goosnargh duck or risotto of cherry tomato. The dessert was either sticky toffee pudding or glazed lemon tart. In the evening, we had hot carved barms (gammon and pork), Krispy Kreme donuts and cookies. We also had a sweetie table.
For entertainment, we wanted a live band as we both love music and we like live lounge and acoustic/indie-style music so, after some research on the internet, we found a Yorkshire-based band called South West. They were amazing! They kept us dancing all night with their mash-ups. During the break between the ceremony and wedding breakfast we also had a magician called Mike Jones, who was absolutely fantastic. He was super talented and a lovely guy – everyone was amazed by him.
We had other special touches on the day, too. We had a lot of signs displaying different quotes placed throughout the venue – each quote meant something to us. We also had a selfie mirror, which was provided by Probooths. Everyone had great fun using this and it was a big hit. Ben and his assistant were so lovely and made the whole process of hiring it very simple and straightforward. We also had large “C&I” letters on rustic crates, which were beautiful and hired from Brides Little Helper.
Looking back, my favourite part of the day has to be the evening because the two of us stayed on the dancefloor and forgot about everyone else. We got to be together more at this point than at any other point in the day.
When it comes to a honeymoon, we haven’t been yet as we have a baby, but we did go to Center Parcs for four days after the wedding for a little ‘familymoon’. We plan to go to Rome for our first anniversary.
My top tip for other Brides Up North is not to stress about everyone else and how much they are enjoying it!
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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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