Charlotte Balbier

pretty special. pronovias for a relaxed countryside cheshire wedding – sarah & dan

August 10th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Pretty Wedding at Meols Hall (c) Bobtale Photography (40)

Even as we creep closer to Autumn (I know, I know, I’m sorry!), a good old English country garden summer wedding still gives us all the feels. And Sarah and Daniel’s glorious big day at Meols Hall, Tithe Barn, is just the ticket if you’re looking to inject some rustic charm and countryside elegance into your ceremony and reception.

There’s a stunningly simple Pronovias gown, homegrown British garden blooms, a subtle colour palette that Farrow and Ball would be proud of and some seriously classy designer elements – Jenny Packham shoes and a Tiffany bracelet as a wedding morning gift from the groom.

These pictures have a lovely sun-soaked charm, full of intimate joy and relaxed laughter – just the vibe this gorgeous pair were going for, and the perfect end to another beautiful week on the blog.

With images by Bobtale Photography.

A Pretty Wedding at Meols Hall (c) Bobtale Photography (32)

sarah says: For our engagement, Dan surprised me with a trip to the Cotswolds; it’s a place I’d wanted to go for a long time. He booked a cottage called ‘The Old Smithy’ in a village called Kingham. We were celebrating our ten year anniversary together that year.

Whilst I went to freshen up after the long journey, Dan set about preparing the cottage, filling it completely with candles, flowers and champagne on ice. He’d even set up the table with vintage cutlery given to my mum and dad as a wedding present back in the day!

When I walked through I found him with our six-month-old Cockapoo puppy, Waffle, who was dressed to impress in a Harris tweed bow tie!

He’d had a book made with a wax stamp seal on the cover reading “D️+S” and he’d filled it with nine polaroid pictures from each of the years we’d been together – with one missing on the final page. The book also contained the poem ‘I carry your heart’ by EE Cummings and the final verse of the poem was on the last page. Dan got down on one knee and removed the final verse of the poem to reveal a hollowed-out section containing an engagement ring and an empty section to fill with the tenth image! The poem was read at our wedding, which was very special.

We announced it with a picture using vintage lexicon letter cards spelling out ‘She Said Yes’ and Waffle proudly leaning over the table!

A Pretty Wedding at Meols Hall (c) Bobtale Photography (23)

We were married on Saturday 10th June 2017 – I’d always wanted a June wedding. We had our ceremony and reception at Meols Hall Tithe Barn in Southport.

We’d attended a wedding at Meols Hall around three years previously and, at that moment, knew that would be our chosen venue. It was just our style, and we really wanted it to be ‘us’. It was the most important decision we made.

A Pretty Wedding at Meols Hall (c) Bobtale Photography (37)

Our theme was ‘English country garden’. We chose it to go along with the Cotswolds feel; a sort of relaxed, wildflower, rustic vibe. We also wanted a more informal day so that our guests felt relaxed.

We went for pastel colours, dove greys, blues and blush pinks. We felt the more subtle colours would create the relaxed feel we were going for – we definitely didn’t want to have everything in one colour which we felt could look a little harsh.

A Pretty Wedding at Meols Hall (c) Bobtale Photography (1)

My dress was Pronovias and purchased at Brides of Liverpool. I went to the store and tried on a number of dresses, but it was only when I went back a second time that I saw ‘the one’. It was very fitted and felt it was a more classical look rather than flashy.

My shoes were from Jenny Packham and I wore some Swarovski earrings and a Tiffany & Co infinity bracelet, which was a wedding gift from Dan.

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all of me. jesus peiro for an elegant wedding at mottram hall – sarah & tom

May 22nd, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

An Elegant Wedding at Mottram Hall (c) Lee Brown Photography (80)

If we were to describe today’s gorgeous real wedding, we’d go for ‘classic with a twist’. Maybe it’s the Spanish design of bride Sarah’s Jesus Peiro gown, or perhaps the sherbet colour pop of her lemon and pink bouquet, but this is English elegance with an extra oomph.

Mottram Hall provided a timeless backdrop with exquisite gardens and the venue was dressed with candelabras and roses, roses and more roses.

But despite their fine surroundings and sophisticated styling, today’s couple knew how to get their party on – just take a look at those dance floor photos!

With photography by Brides Up North Sponsor Lee Brown.

An Elegant Wedding at Mottram Hall (c) Lee Brown Photography (55)

sarah says: We got engaged in May 2015 in our hotel room overlooking Lake Windermere. Tom got down on one knee as we were getting ready for dinner.

Our wedding date was fixed for 25th March 2017 – we’d always wanted a spring wedding.

An Elegant Wedding at Mottram Hall (c) Lee Brown Photography (98)

We decided to host our wedding at Mottram Hall for both the ceremony and the reception. Tom is local to Cheshire and the hotel is in such a wonderful setting. In fact, we knew as soon as we arrived to view it that it was ‘the one’. Tom is a keen golfer so the prospect of a pre-wedding game on the Friday was an added bonus!

An Elegant Wedding at Mottram Hall (c) Lee Brown Photography (69)

Our theme was classic and elegant with plenty of roses to match the beauty of Mottram.

Colour-wise, we went with mostly pink. We picked the bridesmaids dresses first and everything else followed.

An Elegant Wedding at Mottram Hall (c) Lee Brown Photography (67)

My dress was a Jesus Peiro in white lace with sleeves from The White Closet in Didsbury. I loved the intricate lace and always wanted a wedding dress with sleeves. The White Closet had lots of beautiful dresses but I couldn’t stop thinking about the Jesus Peiro, so I knew it was the one! Boutique Alterations in Bramhall did a great job making sure it fit perfectly.

Our three bridesmaids wore floral dresses from Coast.

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hey #bridesquad: discover the secrets of saltmarshe hall

March 28th, 2017 | Julia Braime


Some of our very favourite recent real weddings (and you know we get through our fair share of those here at Brides Up North HQ!) all had one thing in common – the venue.  Saltmarshe Hall was a name that kept cropping up again and again in our most stylish celebrations, so we just had to find out more. One thing led to another – as these things often do – and that curiosity was the start of a (VERY) beautiful friendship!


We are delighted to present an intimate Luxury Wedding Fair at Saltmarshe Hall on Sunday 9th April 2017, to showcase the venue and a truly handpicked selection of the area’s most fabulous wedding suppliers. As those of us sporting a sparkler on our ring finger know all too well, the best things come in smaller packages. This isn’t one of our biggest events, but it is one of our best.

This event is pure luxury, an open doors, friendly soiree, to show you exactly why Saltmarshe (and our chosen supplier team of up to 20) is so very special. If you are on a venue hunt, or are simply looking to finalise the last wedding details with the very best industry bods available in a relaxed and stunning, no pressure environment, then you must put next Sunday in your diary.

We’ll be showing off our most fabulous find yet – East Yorkshire’s most romantic wedding venue – between 12pm and 3pm on Sunday 9th April, and as with the vast majority of our events, entry is FREE.


A restored Georgian Grade II listed Hall with a dash of style and elegance combining both traditional and contemporary charm and set in 17 acres of stunning parkland, Saltmarshe Hall is a truly unique place to say I do. The Saltmarshe ethos is to listen to what you want; and we love that they don’t enforce any off the shelf packages, rather letting their couples’ creative input flourish.


All the rooms are licensed for ceremonies and there’s also the option to hold your ceremony outdoors.  The team also promise to never hold more than one wedding per day at Saltmarshe Hall, so that the venue is truly your home – and blank canvas – for your personal celebration.



bride to be?

We’re giving away up to 100 free Bride To Be Media Packs, filled with glossy magazines and treats from Brides Up North. As demand is high, to pick up your VIP pack all you need to do is pre-register using the form below.

While stocks last.


wedding industry pro?

We would love to welcome new exhibitors and old friends to the Brides Up North family in 2017. We are now accepting exhibitor bookings for all of our award winning luxury wedding exhibitions across three regions. Exhibitors will be strictly limited by category and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Discounts are available for block bookings. Get in touch for pricing, exhibitor info and to guarantee your place.

Email listing the events or area that you are interested in.


Find out and see more at

love equation. jenny packham for a glamorous wedding at rise hall – katie & aaron

March 28th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

Jenny Packham for a Wedding at Rise Hall (c) Bethany Jane Clarke (49)

When mathematicians Aaron and Katie decided to get hitched, their love of all things numeric found their way into their planning; from the Venn diagrams on their Save the Dates, to infinity symbols on their stationery.

And what a day it was, with nods to Katie’s Scottish heritage in the gorgeous blooms, Jimmy Choo heels and a menu that’s guaranteed to make you drool rather inelegantly over your keyboard. We’re sorry (not sorry).

With photography by Brides Up North Sponsor Bethany Clarke Wedding Photography

Jenny Packham for a Wedding at Rise Hall (c) Bethany Jane Clarke (16)

katie says: Aaron and I got engaged in May 2014. Aaron and I had planned a long weekend away in Northumberland as a treat, and we spent one day in a beautiful fishing village called Craster. We were walking around a totally deserted castle, taking in the beautiful views when he dropped to one knee and said “I have something else I want to ask you”. In all honesty, it was a complete shock. He spent a good minute getting a wet knee, assuring me he was serious, he‘d asked my dad, and that he was taking me to buy a ring the following weekend. Of course, I said yes!

We got married on 10th September 2016 at Rise Hall in the East Riding of Yorkshire. Rise Hall was suggested to us by a friend, and it got pushed down the list due to the distance from Leeds. However, the minute (and I mean the actual minute) we walked into Rise Hall and were greeted by Helen (the lady of the house) we just knew it was everything we wanted.

Jenny Packham for a Wedding at Rise Hall (c) Bethany Jane Clarke (54)

We were able to have exactly the type of wedding we wanted at Rise Hall – you have the venue from Friday until Sunday. We had our family and wedding party join us for an informal meal on the Friday night, which was wonderful.

Our blessing took place at All Saints Church, about half-a-mile down the lane from the Hall and was overseen by Rev Andy Simpson, the vespa-driving, guitar-playing vicar. We had countless compliments about Andy; he really and truly made our blessing one of the best parts of the day.

Jenny Packham for a Wedding at Rise Hall (c) Bethany Jane Clarke (43)

We didn’t have a theme for our wedding – instead, we had lots of things that mean a lot to us. The flowers in the bouquets, the boys’ buttonholes and the ladies’ corsages had thistles in them and they were tied together with tartan ribbon to reflect the fact that I was born and grew up in Scotland. Aaron has supported Middlesbrough Football Club since he was tiny, so our table names were a selection of his favourite Middlesbrough players. We also both studied Maths at university, so our save the dates were Venn-diagrams, and our invites and other stationery were embossed with an infinity symbol.

Jenny Packham for a Wedding at Rise Hall (c) Bethany Jane Clarke (48)

I chose a Jenny Packham gown called Lilya, which I bought from Ava Rose Hamilton in Silsden. As soon as we got engaged, so many people said “Oh, I can just see you in a Jenny Packham gown!” However, I refused to try them on as they were way out of my price range. I tried on quite a few gowns, and there were definitely a few that I could have happily got married in. As luck would have it, though, Ava Rose were having a sample sale on their Jenny Packham dresses, so I went along (first in the queue with two of my friends). Lilya was the first one I tried on and I loved it so much. However, I definitely didn’t have that  ‘this is the one’ moment that everyone talks about – I spent a good hour taking it off and on again while deciding. Eventually I bought it, and also went for a long cream veil. My shoes were Jimmy Choo Langs, in steel grey glitter. My dress had a slit up the front, so I knew they’d also be on show!

On the morning of the wedding, Aaron sent a beautiful bottle of champagne to my room, along with a Tiffany infinity bracelet he’d bought as a wedding present.

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real wedding recap: kenneth winston for a pretty springtime wedding at the – sarah & alan

January 1st, 2017 | Julia Braime

It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, 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 9th January 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from 2016. 

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.

A Pretty Wedding at The KP (c) Sarah Beth Photo (51)

Today’s uber-pretty real wedding comes directly from one of our lovely readers, the beautiful Sarah, and features some of our fabulous Brides Up North Sponsors too, making it all the more special.

When submitting her wedding, Sarah wrote: “I love the Brides up North blog and used it to research over the last 18 months when planning my wedding. It also helped me find some of my amazing suppliers!”

And it’s wonderful comments like that which keep us busily working away here at Brides Up North HQ.

For us there are so many elements of Sarah’s May marriage to beau Alan that we love – from the bride’s incredible dress, to the romantic colour palette, blousy blooms and homemade décor. Oh and not forgetting Oscar – the couple’s super cute puppy who makes a special appearance!

With images by Sarah Beth Photo and video by Brides Up North Sponsor, Silver Sixpence Films.

A Pretty Wedding at The KP (c) Sarah Beth Photo (28)

A Pretty Wedding at The KP (c) Sarah Beth Photo (26)

sarah says: We got engaged on the 11th October 2014. Alan booked a surprise romantic cottage in the Lake District. After a day of exploring the local scenery, back at the cottage that evening he cooked us a candlelit three course meal and after our warm chocolate brownie dessert (the way to my heart!) Alan got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. It was such a beautiful setting for a romantic proposal and he had picked a gorgeous princess cut ring.

We got married on the 14th May 2016. We chose to get married in May as we both loved the idea of a spring time wedding. The colours and flowers I had dreamt of fitted perfectly with a spring theme. We also love to travel and explore new places and choosing a honeymoon in May meant we would get the best of the weather long haul while beating the “summer rush”.

Alan and Sarah from Silver Sixpence Films on Vimeo.

Our wedding ceremony was held in my home town at St Mary’s Church, Beverley. The church is more than 900 years old and is just gorgeous. Inside the ceiling is painted with stars and the long aisle made for a really grand entrance.

Our reception afterwards was held at The KP club in Pocklington. As soon as we visited The KP we both instantly fell in love with the rolling countryside views. The bright and modern interior meant we had a blank canvass to personalise the room with our finishing touches. We also loved the log cabins with hot tubs in the grounds, the perfect place to get ready on the morning of the wedding.

A Pretty Wedding at The KP (c) Sarah Beth Photo (37)

A Pretty Wedding at The KP (c) Sarah Beth Photo (36)

We wanted our wedding to have a pretty spring time feel so we incorporated lots of soft pinks, ivory and lilac florals on our wedding stationary, as well as using florals and ribbons to decorate the venue. The overall effect was so dreamy and it all came together perfectly. The theme created a really relaxed feel for our guests which was also something that was really important to us.

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my top tip to other brides up north would be…

December 19th, 2016 | Rachel Parry


Image from Berta & blush. a stylish wedding at Styal Lodge – Louise & Glen

You may recall earlier this year that we grouped together the top twenty best top tips from our real brides featured on the blog between January and June, to pass on their words of wisdom to those of you currently planning your own big day celebrations.

And having clocked up another six months of fabulous real weddings (where does the time go?!), we’re back once again to pass on the nuggets of advice from our knowledgeable brides, who shared their weddings on the blog during the second part of 2016.

There really are some amazing little gems in here that will help you to realise that everyone has their ups and downs on the wedding planning journey, but that ultimately all that matters is that you are marrying your true love and best friend. We’ll raise a festive glass of Bailey’s to that!

So, prepare to take note as our clued-up brides complete the following sentence – “My top tip to other Brides Up North would be…


In full bloom. Stewart Parvin for a spring themed wedding at Statham Lodge – Laura & Mike

laura says: “Enjoy the planning of your wedding with your partner as much as the day itself. Mike and I loved making decisions about things together and it drew us closer and closer as the wedding day crept up on us. All of our causal discussions, ideas, phone calls, emails and meetings in the year before the wedding personalised and tailored our day so it was just as we wanted it. With that in mind, wedding planning can also be very stressful. We were lucky because we had top quality suppliers who had done it all before. So our other top tip would be to use suppliers with good reputations who are ideally used to working with each other”


Gorgeous grandeur. Pops of copper for a relaxed wedding at Left Bank Leeds – Courtney & Vicky

courtney says: “Don’t feel you need to stick to the traditional plan for your day. We got ready together which I really liked, we had our photos before the ceremony so that we didn’t miss out on time with our friends and family (and it meant our hair and makeup were fresh for the photos). We decided not to use cars, have flowers, there was no cake, we didn’t do favours and we didn’t do a first dance. Just make your day all about the two of you. Also, when styling a large venue it’s worth having a few focal points of interest to add impact rather than lots of little things dispersed. Oh, and it’s totally normal to hate the politics and stress that creep into planning a wedding!”


Daisies and dicky bows for a springtime wedding at Wentworth Castle Gardens – Shawn & Jenny

jenny says: “Make lists, involve others and accept help, as however long you think you will need to plan a wedding you will no doubt end up feeling that you need longer. We spent many a day roping family into ‘crafternoons’ to help set up seating plans, make ribbon wands and confetti cones etc.”


Orange and navy for a fun-filled wedding at Quarry Bank Mill – Zoe & Chris

zoe says: “Do as much as you can yourself for the wedding. We personalised everything that we could. There was a lot to do, but we were so proud when it all came together. We also really enjoyed doing it all together in the run up to our big day.”


Vintage romance. Sophia Tolli for an elegant wedding at Middleton Lodge – Beccy & Craig

beccy says: “Firstly, whilst you obviously want to create a memorable day that everyone enjoys, I think it’s incredibly important to remember just what your wedding day is about – it’s about you two – the bride and groom! And the most important thing is that you two have the day of your dreams which you’ll never forget, so don’t spend too much time worrying about everyone else – you can’t always please everyone! Secondly, plan well and choose your suppliers and your venue carefully. If you get that right, your day will run clockwork leaving you to enjoy your special day without having to worry about a thing.”


Come rain or shine. A fun and fabulous wedding in Liverpool – Jody & Liam

jody says: “Don’t worry about the weather. I was worried thinking the rain might spoil our day. In the end, it made it. It rained nearly all day, however, Liam and I think it made our day more interesting. We had fun running around the city under an umbrella with our photographer trying to get some fun photos in the downpours. Nothing will faze you on the day so just go with it.”


Hydrangeas & sparkles for a personal summer wedding in Sheffield – Faith & Pete

faith says: “Get an amazing photographer, the photos will bring the day back to you and really help you remember it forever!”

Tracey + Neil's Rustic Spring Wedding at The Ashes in Staffordshire

Bunting & blooms. Johanna Hehir for a pretty springtime wedding at The Ashes – Tracey & Neil

tracey says: “Do what you want – it’s your wedding. Spend money on the things that are important to you. For us, it was the photographers, providing good food and drink for our guests and the entertainment (ice cream van and the band). Think about what you want your guests to leave your wedding saying/thinking. I have been a guest at many weddings where guests had been totally forgotten and where style over substance was more important. We always kept in mind that our guests were travelling at least an hour to our venue and we wanted to make that journey worthwhile. We wanted them to leave with really happy memories of the day, so it was really important we provided enough entertainment, they were looked after well and that they weren’t hanging about for too long.”


True blue: Satin and beads for an elegant wedding at Ellingham Hall – Emma & Gareth

emma says: “Delegate! People love getting involved and its worth making the most of the skills your family and friends have – it makes your job so much easier and makes the day so much more personal – I wish I’d realised it earlier!”


Natural glamour. Ronald Joyce for a romantic wedding at Ashton Memorial – Melissa & Craig

melissa says: “Ask your previously married friends if they have any leftover wedding props they don’t need any longer. It’s amazing what you can get and a great way to save on budget, whilst re-using something another couple loved. I’d also say really consider what you want from your wedding – if you want photos in the countryside make sure there’s plenty of places nearby you can go, if you dream of candlelight at your venue – make sure they allow it, as we found out last minute they didn’t!”


Roses & romance. A pretty blush pink wedding at The Belle Époque – Kate & Dan

kate says: “Plan, plan, plan. Just try and be as organised as possible. We did a lot of the planning early on so when it got nearer to the wedding, we found we weren’t stressed as there wasn’t much more to do. This meant that we were able to relax right up to the big day!”


Justin Alexander for an urban wedding at the Merseyside Maritime Museum – Beth & Will

beth says: “Don’t worry or fuss over the small details. We are so glad we didn’t. Keep your focus on what you are really there to do: to marry the person you have the privilege to love and be loved by in return. The confetti blows away and the cake is gobbled up, but seeing your best friend the next day and knowing you are continuing on a whole new adventure together is an extraordinary feeling. And what’s better, it’s more than a feeling because it’s a commitment. Take time to remember and enjoy.”


Summertime flair. A stylish wedding at Hillbark Hotel, Cheshire – Alexandra & Adrian

alexandra says: “A year is the perfect amount of time to organise a wedding; it was long enough to plan without the stress but not too long to drag it out. Other couples might not agree! We loved planning it and whenever we completed a wedding ‘job’ off the list, we had a drink to celebrate! Also, we had no interference in planning our wedding and it worked perfectly – it’s your day, no-one else’s, so just do it yourselves!”

The White Hart, Saddleworth, Glossop Wedding Photographer - Claire Basiuk Photography - Mr + Mrs Booth

Peaches & cream. Amanda Wyatt for a classic wedding in the North West – Chris & Stacey

stacey says: “We set up an account on Wedpics for all our friends and family to share their photos from the day. We would definitely recommend getting something like Wedpics to other brides and grooms because it was so good to see everyone’s photos of the day and to see moments that we might have missed.”


Modern glamour. Maggie Sottero for a black tie wedding in Newcastle – Jaimie & Gemma

gemma says: “My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to do everything the way you (both) want to do it. Don’t conform to what other people think or what tradition says you should do, and definitely don’t stress about any of it.”


Picture perfect. Maggie Sottero for a relaxed wedding at Abbeydale Picture House – Kath & Tim

kath says: “You don’t have to overcomplicate things. We had the perfect day but we didn’t go over the top with everything. We tried to use people that we knew or local suppliers. Also, it’s ok to be yourselves – Tim and I knew that we didn’t want to conform to what a wedding ‘should’ look like. As we had an afternoon tea, we actually ended the reception at 7pm because we wanted to have a special meal together in the evening together as just us!”


Dream team: Pretty paper and lace for a romantic wedding at Newton Hall – Ashlea & David

ashlea says: “Involve the groom. I don’t think our day would have been as special and successful if it wasn’t for Dave. He had to do a lot of the meetings on his own and organise things that I wasn’t able to. We worked as a team and a lot of people were surprised to find out when he was enjoying it. I think it was a great bonding experience and he felt just as proud as I did when everything came together in the end.”


Peonies & pastels. Kenneth Winston for a pretty spring time wedding at The KP – Sarah & Alan

sarah says: “Don’t rule out a videographer to capture your special day. It is something we originally discounted but then booked Silver Sixpence a little later on and we are so pleased we did. The day passes so quickly and it was lovely to get back from honeymoon and relive the day all over again, plus see things we had missed. Our video is something we can cherish and watch year after year.”


Roses & romance. Mori Lee for a vintage style wedding at Newton Hall – Holly & Ben

holly says: “Believe that whatever happens your day will be the best of your lives. I think it’s easy to get swamped with all the little details and do nothing but worry about how it’s all going to go. If I could go back to myself now I would tell myself to get a grip! Not everything went perfectly, the weather for one, but in our eyes it was still the perfect day. We married each other in front of our most loved friends and family and we had the best party to celebrate. It really is all that matters.”


Bubbles & blooms. House of Mooshki for a relaxed wedding at Vallum Farm – Emma & Stuart

emma says: “Don’t stress! I had a near breakdown on the Friday as there seemed so much to do, but rely on your suppliers – they do this as a profession and so they know what they are doing! Funnily enough on Saturday morning as it was out of my hands completely, I was really relaxed and the photographer said it was the most relaxed wedding prep he’d ever seen!”