August 17th, 2018 | Rachel Parry
With the weekend literally within sniffing distance I’m counting down the hours until I can switch my cuppa for a G&T, but I’m already on a Friday high as the stylish wedding we’re sharing with you today is a super special one for me – as it’s that of one of my very best friends’, Gemma.
Having grown up with this incredibly beautiful and caring girl (she’s a very clever nurse, don’t you know), I was somewhat gutted when her boyfriend – now husband – Kieran, made the move down south for his job (another clever one, being an architect), which meant stealing my Gem away to the big smoke of London too. However, as he’s made her exceptionally happy and played a big part in helping to organise the wedding day, relieving the bride of some pressure, I just about forgive him.
And so, as they approach their first wedding anniversary (seriously, where did the last year go?!) it’s a pleasure for me to feature their fabulous wedding day on our pretty pages.
I was incredibly touched to be asked to take on a special role as part of their big day by doing a reading at the church and will be making sure Gem is integral to my impending wedding too, as she’s set to be one of my lovely bridesmaids.
Both personal and stylish, I loved every element of their celebrations – from the heartfelt church service, to the cool choice of venue, ever-flowing fizz, endless canapes, wonderfully warm family hosts and an amazing evening party.
So, I welcome my lovely Gem to tell you more…
With images by Christopher Terry Weddings.
gemma says: We got engaged 19th June 2016, in Lulworth Cove, Dorset. We had gone away with my parents for a few days in desperate need of an escape from London, some sunshine and fresh air. Needless to say it rained and was cold the whole time!
On the third day of the break, the rain clearly wasn’t going anywhere, so my parents left us to go for a walk along Lulworth Cove. I suddenly thought how enthused Kieran looked for the outdoors in the wind and rain, given he isn’t particularly an outdoor lover! This spurred me on for a very windy walk along the beach there. As we got to the end of the coast, Kieran broke off from me slightly and he suggested we might ‘look for some fossils’. When I turned around he was down on one knee with a ring. I couldn’t speak, except to laugh and laugh for what felt like an eternity to Kieran I’m sure. Finally, a bunch of locals walked past and shouted: “Has she said yes yet?” Which brought me back to reality and I finally managed to say yes.
We got married on 16th September 2017. Our ceremony took place at St John the Evangelist Church in Carlton in Lindrick, Nottinghamshire, which we picked as it was my local church growing up and so it holds a lot of memories. The reception was held at The Pumping House, Ollerton. We picked this venue as we were looking for something a bit different and liked the industrial feel the building offered.
Neither of us felt we wanted a lot of flowers so tried to concentrate on a more foliage/botanical theme. In keeping with this, the colour scheme was green, white and gold, though Kieran claims it also reflected his Irish ancestry!
My dress was fitted with a lace overlay and train. It originally had a button-up back but I chose to have this removed and made into a V-shaped back. I rarely wear anything fitted but when I put this dress on I felt like it really showed off a figure that I didn’t realise I had and thought Kieran would like that too! It was also light and easy to move around in.
Kieran treated himself to a custom-made suit from a place called Beggars Run in Shoreditch. The suit was a dark green three-piece with wool sourced from Yorkshire. He complemented this with a beautiful pair of dark brown handmade calf’s-leather shoes from Grenson’s in Brick Lane.
The groomsmen were all asked to wear navy, while Kieran provided complementary green ties.
Kirsty and I also had some henna done on our hands to reflect our half Indian heritage. My stepdad David, then hired the lady to come to the wedding after the meal and do henna for our guests, which was a good talking point and great to see everyone’s designs the next day.
August 16th, 2018 | Julia Braime
As the very first insight you give guests into your big day it’s super important to take time when deciding on your invites. For maximum impact you will want them to be both a nod to the colour scheme and theme you have planned for the wedding, but also a reflection you and your partner.
We therefore love stationery suppliers that give brides and grooms the option to personalise designs through their wording, colour and material choices. One such company is the fabulous Basic Invite who we’re chatting to on the blog today about their utterly gorgeous paper goods, which range from save the dates and invites to on day essentials, like name place cards, menus and guest books.
Taking custom designed wedding invitations to the next level, Basic Invite offer couples an incredible range of designs, from pretty floral creations to cool graphic prints, and then give them the power to make their stationery truly unique with 180 custom colour choices, 100 font styles, plus multiple paper types and card cuts.
Better still, they’re offering Brides Up North readers 15% off orders placed on their website – just use code 15FF51 at checkout.
So, let’s handover the blog to the team behind Basic Invite to showcase some of their delightful stationery options while talking us through the design and ordering process.
Can you give us an overview of the service and products that you offer?
basic invite say: We offer truly custom stationery for all of life’s major moments! From wedding invitations and thank you notes to personal stationery and business cards. We have a card for everything and designs to suite any style!
Why is stationery such an important element of a wedding and how can it help to enhance the build-up and the big day itself?
Wedding invitations and stationery are an important element because it’s one of the first things your guests will receive in regards to the big day. It’s important that your invitations reflect you as a couple and give guests a sneak peek into your wedding style, giving them a taste of what’s to come.
How would you describe the style of the stationery that Basic Invite offer?
We have something for everyone! We strive to offer the most innovative designs while also designing timeless options that will never go out of style. The cool thing about Basic Invite is our customisation options. This offers endless options for brides to tweak their design and make it truly unique. Brides can choose styles ranging from vintage to modern, typography to calligraphy, and even photo invitations.
What is your most popular design currently?
Our most popular design for the 2018 wedding season is definitely our watercolour wedding invitations. Brides are loving the soft touches of colour and delicate floral designs. With that said, our new Seal & Send wedding invitations are coming in as a close second. This popular line offers an all-in-one design with a tear-off RSVP card and no envelope needed as addresses are printed on the front and sealed with a custom sticker. We anticipate seeing a lot of brides going for this look in the 2019 wedding season.
How far in advance of the wedding would you advise couples to source their stationery?
The sooner the better! Based on a one-year engagement we suggest couples follow the following timeline.
8+ months order samples
6+ months order your save the dates
4+ months send your save the dates and order your wedding invitations
3+ months send your invites and order your wedding day stationery
2 weeks post-wedding send your thank you notes
What elements of the wedding would you advise couples to consider when picking their stationery and where should they look for inspiration?
Incorporating wedding colours is a huge design detail that will go a long way, especially if you are keeping a cohesive theme throughout all of your wedding festivities. Theme is another element to consider. Switching things up throughout your engagement is a fun option but designing invitations that will match and transfer across to your wedding day stationery, like your menus and place cards, will make for a solid overall look which is super classy!
Basic Invite offer various ways that couples can personalise their wedding stationery designs, can you tell us more about such options?
Our customisation options are what help us stand apart from other online stationery vendors. Not only do we offer hundreds of wedding invitation designs and so many other products, we also offer 180 custom colour choices, 100 font styles, multiple paper types and card cuts, three foil colours in two styles, and almost every aspect of reach design can be edited or customised including wording, spacing, colour, and more!
Can couples order material samples and previews of stationery products before placing their final order?
Absolutely and it’s something we highly recommend. That way customers can see their invitations first hand before they order in full. Although our website shows edits in real time it’s still a good idea to see the final product before sending hundreds out.
August 16th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
All kinds of prettiness grace the blog today, as we delve into Sarah and Greg’s beautiful spring wedding at Dorfold Hall, a Grade I listed Jacobean house in Cheshire which offered the couple everything they could desire in a venue.
Opting for gorgeous coppers, blush pinks and ivory for the most elegant of colour schemes, this was exquisitely offset by an abundance of delicate roses and peonies. The flower arch alone has got all those Insta-worthy feels! Other original highlights to take note of include the cute whisky and pink gin favours, and the fire pits with marshmallows and sparklers in the evening for a dose of childhood nostalgia.
Alongside their absolutely stunning wedding photography, which you’ll be poring over very soon – we promise, they also captured their day via drones – a thoroughly modern approach! But, let’s get back to blogging basics and hand things over to the beautiful bride to chat through all the fabulous details!
With images by Joasis Photography.
sarah says: Greg and I first met in May 2011 at a wedding in Trikeri, Greece. Greg was one of the groom’s friends and I was a bridesmaid. He decided he quite fancied a date with me and tried for some months to arrange a meet up. This wasn’t easy as he lived in Germany! After a few fun dates Greg was sent away with the Army for six months and we didn’t last the course. We remained friends and met up when Greg visited London – and I also visited him in Germany. We got together properly in March 2014 and Greg moved into my flat in Balham in June – then he never left! We bought a house together in 2015, and then he proposed on 17th February 2017, at the top of Pitch Hill in Surrey. The time between then and May 2018 has been a whirlwind of work, romance and wedding planning!
We got married on 27th May 2018. We had a lot of people travelling up from London to Cheshire and therefore thought a bank holiday Sunday would work well for people. I also love springtime gardens.
We visited a few venues near where we live in Surrey however I soon realised that having the wedding near where I grew up was important to me. We viewed a few places in Cheshire but both fell in love with the history of Dorfold Hall when we saw it, as it reminded Greg of army life, and me of the Cambridge colleges. We loved the fact that we could do everything on site but have different elements in multiple locations. For example, we could use the 200-year-old coach house for the ceremony, then the gardens, hall and the marquee. We could also customise everything in whichever way we liked and avoid a cookie cutter feel.
The whole style of the wedding was designed to be elegant and beautiful. I had never been one of those girls who had their wedding planned in advance, but once I started planning, I knew what I wanted it to look and feel like. I have a creative streak and wanted to design as much of it as possible so the invites, table placing and orders of service all used my script and drawings. Cara at The Little Paper Shop designed some loose leaf florals for me in a muted pink (to match the bridesmaids dresses that I had already bought) which we put with rose gold and the theme grew from there. The styling of the day was all muted pinks, ivories and delicate flowers with beautiful scents – such as roses and peonies – with lots of texture and sage green. I loved the flowers – and in particular my bouquet – which blew me away! It was such a beautiful shape, with lots of texture, and it smelled divine!
I love the elegance and beauty of blush pink and the pop of metallics. We added lots of ivory to keep it all muted and avoid saccharine.
My first dress didn’t work out – so with less than three months to go I was in a real quandary! However, I came across Kate from Mariee in Nantwich, who in fairy godmother style said she could make me a bespoke one in time! So, we set upon designing it ourselves based on all the bits I had liked from other dresses, and I loved it! The dress was covered in tiny lace motifs and I loved the trumpet shape that was held by a big net skirt. The lace veil was my favourite accessory – the lace edging matched the dress, and then for the evening we created a Coco Chanel style cape to add structure. I loved the whole thing and had so much fun wearing it! I also wore Liberty in Love earrings and decided that silver Manolos were a must – why not?! And Bridal Hair and Makeup in Cheshire worked their magic on me on the day.
August 15th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
After the most romantic of proposals in Venice, it seems only fitting that today’s couple, Lucie and Harry, ended up tying the knot at another glamorous location – Denton Hall, overlooking the Yorkshire moors.
Going for a Downton Abbey vibe, with a hint of 1920s Gatsby glamour – their big day is best described as the epitome of elegance and class, with the bride wearing a fabulous champagne gown and a lively jazz band leading the procession of guests from the church along to Denton Hall. We can just imagine what a delightful surprise this would have been!
It was by no means a traditional wedding though – not only did they have ‘groomsmaids’, they also opted for a second confetti shot while cutting their cake! There is so much more to talk about though and we couldn’t possibly spoil it for you, so let’s hand the blog over to Lucie to share all the wonderful highlights, in her own words!
p.s We’ll be back at Denton Hall on Sunday 4th November 2018 for another gorgeous Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Show. Pop that date in your diaries!
With images by Barnaby Aldrick.
lucie says: We got engaged in October 2016, in Venice, at the Cipriani Hotel. I’d always wanted to take the speedboat to the hotel and have a snoop around! Harry surprised me by taking me there for what I thought was a cocktail, which then turned into a surprise dinner, followed by a proposal on a moonlit bench in the beautiful, and aptly named, Casanova Gardens. I couldn’t stop crying, and the elaborate surprise continued when it turned out we were actually staying there in a beautiful suite overlooking the iconic swimming pool. My whole family were all waiting in Harry’s Bar on Venice mainland all evening to hear whether he’d popped the question. They got the boat over for breakfast the next day – it was just amazing, and I was unpicking the elaborate web of lies they’d all told me, for weeks afterwards!
We got married on the 5th May 2018. We though that spring would be a lovely time of year to get married and we didn’t want to wait a whole two years until summer 2018.
We got married at St Helen’s Church in Denton, Ilkley, and then celebrated afterwards at Denton Hall. We looked at lots of venues, all over the country, and knew we wanted a classic, formal but fun wedding. We wanted a beautiful historic building with bedrooms so that our friends could party and stay over, plus no early curfew! Denton was an instant hit, it had all of the above plus a very delightful and experienced team who we knew would plan and deliver a seamless wedding day. There are also several different rooms, so we were able to have the party in one and created a quieter lounge for people who wanted to sit down, plus the bar and library for those who wanted to drink and chat. The spiral staircase has a huge chandelier and is the perfect spot for photo taking and cake cutting.
The views from Denton Hall are hard to beat, and we really looked forward to people seeing the beautiful moors if they hadn’t been to Yorkshire before. We were extremely lucky that the weather was amazing all weekend, so it looked even more glorious! I grew up nearby, and it was so special to tie the knot somewhere we both love and have shared many happy memories.
We wanted a Downton Abbey vibe, with some 20s Gatsby glamour! We’re lucky that we have similar and fairly classic tastes, so the style wasn’t really a hard decision for us.
We chose a navy, gold and eucalyptus colour scheme. The skirt of my dress was a champagne colour, so there were hints of gold here and there in the accessories and decorations, but overall we mostly used florals and their subtle colour tones to decorate. We both love navy, especially for men’s suits, so that was a no-brainer when it came to kitting-out the groom and his ushers. My bridesmaids wore a lovely shade of green to tie in with the florals, which also looked good next to the champagne of my dress and the men’s navy suits.
I love dressing up, so trying dresses on was really fun! My dress came from Harrogate Wedding Lounge. I knew I wanted sleeves in my dress for added elegance and don’t think I would have changed my mind on that. The original dress didn’t have them, so the very talented dressmaker worked wonders using extra lace ordered from the designer, Justin Alexander.
It was really lovely and quite unusual to have a combination of ivory and champagne colours in one dress. I loved the simplicity of the sheath style and the way the skirt fell, and also the covered buttons all the way down the train. I had a single tier veil, as I didn’t want anything bulky that would detract from the simple lines of the skirt. The veil had some little Swarovski crystals on it for a hint of shimmer in the sunlight – I loved it so much I ended up putting it back on at some late hour on the dance floor!
My outfit felt super elegant and I also added an ostrich feather stole for an added hint of 20s glamour in the evening light! Turns out I didn’t need it for warmth, but I wore it later on anyway.
I had earrings made for the bridesmaids by Laura Rhodes, of Lovebird Bridal in Ilkley. She is very talented and also made my hair vine and shoe clips, as well as some hairpins on gold wire with pearls and beads for the bridesmaids.
August 14th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
There’s something about a bride on her wedding day, as she brims with beauty, elegance and an inner radiance – and today’s bride, Harriet, is certainly no exception. Looking 100% gorgeous in a fitted lace gown with capped sleeves and a delicate full-length veil, she glides down the aisle with grace. And to complete the moving moment – a live church choir performing.
Harriet and Mike chose a beautiful, natural theme to complement the countryside setting and their personalities. The rustic look was echoed on the tables of the wedding breakfast, with candles, wooden log slices and trails of ivy. The two large foliage hoops hanging from the roof of the marquee provide a pretty focal point and draw guests’ attention to the fairy-lit ceiling, which really comes into its own as the light fades and the band strikes up for the first dance.
A further detail highlight has to be the cake stand made from a tree trunk, decorated with wispy foliage and topped with a naked cake in a beautiful; summery yellow hue. Confectionery perfection!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Lloyd Clarke Photography.
harriet says: We got engaged on 17th July 2015, at the breakfast table on our balcony. Mike made a lovely cooked breakfast and shortly afterwards he brought me a red velvet cupcake that said ‘Marry Me’ on it. To my great surprise, I turned to him and he was already on one knee. Later that evening we travelled to India to explore the Himalayas. What a way to start our journey!
We got married on 5th August 2017. It was one of the only dates available at the stunning Priory Cottages where we held our reception – a very popular place! Without question we would recommend the venue; it’s simply stunning if you enjoy being in the countryside. Serena and her team were very accommodating. We also reserved all the cottages for our families, which was convenient for us.
Our ceremony took place at All Saints Church in Kirk Deighton. We chose this venue because it is a beautiful church and close to my family home. I also have fond memories of the church because my eldest sister got married there in 2012. I must give a special mention to the wonderful choir that joined us at the ceremony – Collavoce from Harrogate.
We chose a rustic theme for our wedding. I felt it complemented the venue and we also like a natural approach with nothing too extravagant. There was no set colour scheme, other than whites, greens and blush pink in the flowers to bring a hint of colour into it. We wanted it to be as natural as possible.
My dress was from a shop in York called Bridal Rogue Gallery – a full-length, white lace dress from the designer Pronovias. I chose it because I liked the fit, the lace detail and the slightly lower back. It was a very statement wedding dress for me, which I wouldn’t have normally gone for. I went into the shop thinking I would choose a completely different kind of dress but instead I fell in love with that one.
My bridal makeup was done by Laura Wilkinson. She was very friendly, professional and reasonably priced. She wasn’t pushy in any way and gave advice as to what best suited my complexion. I would recommend her to anyone.
August 13th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
The colour-scheme of today’s Scottish wedding between Caroline and Nathan is inspired by Peru, after Nathan popped the question on the Inca Trail – and what glorious, bright and vivacious hues it provides, in pinks, oranges, reds and blues with an overarching theme of navy and gold.
As far as arrivals go, we love the 12-piece pipe band that led the couple down the long drive to their castle venue. What a spectacular, regal sight to see – and hear – as a guest. No wonder it gave a lot of them goose bumps! The wow factor continued throughout the day, with a ceilidh band to get the crowds moving and a superb firework display to round off the night in style, providing some gorgeous photo opps. Caroline and Nathan definitely upped the ante when it came to laying on the entertainment.
And we have to give them kudos for their attire too, with Nathan pulling off a subtle tartan jacket for the daytime and switching to tartan suit trousers at the evening party. Meanwhile, Caroline was a vision of beauty in a princess-style dress perfect for a castle wedding, complete cute bow detailing and a sparkly beaded belt.
With images by Ian MacMichael.
caroline says: We got engaged on the Inca Trail in Peru, on 23rd April 2017. Nathan carried the ring in his pocket the entire time; I had absolutely no idea! After a slow start with me falling in a puddle and torrential rain all morning, he got down on one knee. It was at the last Inca site on day three before we got to Machu Picchu at a place called Intipata – a beautiful spot where you can look out over the entire valley. It completely took our breath away and was the perfect location.
We got married on 2nd June 2018. As soon as we saw pictures of Carlowrie Castle in Edinburgh and went to see it in person, we fell in love and knew it was exactly what we were looking for. We had our actual ceremony at Mayfield Salisbury Church. The church has very close connections to our family, so we couldn’t imagine getting married anywhere else.
Carlowrie Castle was exactly what we were looking for. It has an incredible driveway, beautiful gardens and, even though it’s a castle, it’s completely modern inside. Due to our numbers (140) we thought it best to have a marquee, so we could take advantage of using the gorgeous orangery for our drinks reception and for our photobooth, sweet station, etc.
We would absolutely recommend the venue to other brides and grooms. We had multiple meetings with Jen, Ailsa and the team at Carlowrie. They were excellent with calling, emailing and catching up on a regular basis. On the day, Jen and the team absolutely smashed it. Everything was taken care of; we didn’t have to ask for anything and they needed no prompting to keep the evening going strong. They went above and beyond, to the point where one of the waitresses brought us canapés while we were having our photos taken! Absolute dream. It’s in a beautiful setting, convenient for both Edinburgh Airport and Edinburgh City Centre. This venue has it all!
In terms of a theme, having gotten engaged in Peru we wanted to feature bright and bold colours in the wedding. This was mainly done through the bouquets, flowers at the church and evening reception but our main wedding colours were actually determined by the bridesmaid dresses. We found lovely beaded navy blue dresses and thought that a gold colour would complement them beautifully, so we brought those colours through in any way we could – the table plan (frames within a large frame that we made ourselves!), the wedding stationary, the cake, etc.
My dress was by Morilee and I bought it at Gwenne in Broxburn. I tried on one of every style in the store as I wanted to make sure I didn’t prefer something else to my favourite and so that I had the full bridal experience! My dress was full-on princess style with a beaded belt, under-netting, embellishment and detachable straps that I took off for the evening part of the wedding (and applied a red lippie!). I just loved it!
Nathan wore a subtle tartan suit jacket (blue/green) with black trousers, a white shirt and a black bow-tie, all from Hugo Boss. He kept his outfit a secret, which was such an amazing surprise, and he completely took my breath away. He looked so gorgeous: the perfect combination of England and Scotland. He also had a change for the evening, where he switched it up into a dark shirt and the subtle tartan trousers from the original suit, again from Hugo Boss. He looked incredible. I can’t believe he had an outfit change and I didn’t!
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