Charlotte Balbier

breaking news: a brand new secret garden wedding space at middleton lodge

June 15th, 2017 | Julia Braime

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Well, Brides Up North – hold the 3pm latte! – have we got some breaking news for you this Thursday afternoon! One of our very favourite spots to say I do, and host of our Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Show, Middleton Lodge Estate is set to launch a brand new wedding venue for Spring 2018!

Yes, you read that right!  Another super space within this already gorgeous setting. You can now celebrate your wedding day in your very own secret garden.

Kitchen Garden and Orangery with sketch

Designed by critically acclaimed landscape designer, Tom Stuart Smith, The Kitchen Garden is a private two-acre garden filled with wildlife, home grown produce and seasonal blooms. Nestled in the walled garden is the recently restored Orangery. Drawing influence from the award-winning Coach House, expect a stylish and unique wedding venue, idyllic for an English summer wedding.

The Orangery’s main room can host up 50 guests for the Ceremony and 100 guests for the Reception, with natural light streaming through the large Georgian windows and doors onto the guests. For those looking for a smaller wedding, The Old Forge Barn, located behind the Farmhouse, is perfect for a larger ceremony with space for up to 100 guests.

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Overlooking the Kitchen Garden, after the ceremony the wedding party can step outside onto the terrace and celebrate with a glass of champagne surrounded by perfect lawns, wild meadows and herbaceous borders.

Guests will also have exclusive use of the Boiler House Bar and the Potting Shed bedrooms. As well as the picture perfect Farmhouse, set in its own tranquil meadow, which is all yours for the night.

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The Wedding Breakfast will be served in The Orangery, overlooking the Kitchen Garden. Expect a relaxed feast of seasonal produce sourced straight from the estate, the surrounding woodland and handpicked local suppliers.

After the meal, wedding guests can party into the night at The Old Forge Barn, just a short two-minute walk from The Kitchen Garden through the estate grounds. With its late night bar, it’s all yours for the evening. Just try not to wake the sheep next door! Additional bedrooms are available across the estate for wedding guests.

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Available to book for exclusive hire weddings from Spring 2018. Book an appointment now with the award-winning Wedding Team for an exclusive sneak preview of this beautiful new venue to the Middleton Lodge Estate.

Photographs by GASP Photo Co.

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true blue. house of mooshki for a diy wedding in the north east – emma & rob

June 14th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

A DIY Wedding at As You Like It (c) Daz Mack (27)

The name of the venue chosen by today’s real wedding couple set the tone for their entire approach to their big day.

Falling in love with the relaxed and eclectic feel of As You Like It in Jesmond, Emma and Rob planned a DIY wedding their way, with attire, décor and entertainment to reflect their individual taste and style.

We must give a big shout out to petit bride Emma who totally rocks her bespoke House of Mooshki gown and glittering heels. Groom Rob also deserves style credit for his pale blue three-piece and on-trend dicky bow.

With images by Daz Mack Photography

A DIY Wedding at As You Like It (c) Daz Mack (12)

emma says: Rob proposed in Albert Park, Middlesbrough, in July 2013. We had won a romantic photoshoot in a charity raffle, and Rob and our photographer Daz had secretly planned the proposal, so everything was captured on camera. It was a complete shock and there were a fair few happy tears!

We set the date for 21st October 2016. It was also my grandad’s birthday that day, who was unable to attend, so we all raised a glass to him.

A DIY Wedding at As You Like It (c) Daz Mack (23)

We had both the ceremony and reception at As You Like It, in Jesmond. We were very open minded when it came to searching for a venue, we had no idea what to expect, but when we walked into AYLI we fell in love. The place was so eclectic, interesting and quirky, but beautiful and versatile too. We were also impressed by the amazing cocktail menu, lovely food, and helpful staff.

We didn’t really have a theme as such, but as a lot of things were DIY we were able to make sure it felt very personal and warm. Many guests had travelled a long way to be there, and we wanted them to feel welcome, relaxed and basically just able to have a really good time.

A DIY Wedding at As You Like It (c) Daz Mack (25)

The wedding featured a lot of blue and gold tones, including in the bridal party’s clothing and accessories. Our colour scheme wasn’t very strict otherwise, as the venue itself is so full of decoration, anything suits!

My wedding dress was by House of Mooshki – a bespoke version of the Claire dress. I was willing to try on anything when it came to dress shopping, I never had that ‘dream’ image in my head. But at 5ft nothing, I found it hard at first to find something that I felt good in. (The best man actually made a joke in his speech about finding somewhere that does kids sizes). The service and quality of a bespoke dress from House of Mooshki was well worth the money. As soon as I found out about them I knew that’s where I’d find my dress.

A DIY Wedding at As You Like It (c) Daz Mack (16)

Rob wore a light dusty blue three-piece suit from Topman, with a navy blue bowtie and pocket square. He had tried on several wedding outfits in other places, but the colour and fit of the Topman one was exactly what he was looking for, so kept going back to it!

The bridesmaids all wore midnight blue infinity dresses from The Dainty Yard on Etsy, and styled them individually.

The groomsmen wore navy blue Moss Bros suits, with accessories matching the groom’s.

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all natural. enzoani for a woodland wedding at healey barn – jamie & david

June 6th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Natural Wedding at Healey Barn (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (33)

We do love a barn wedding here at Brides Up North, and Jamie and David’s gorgeous celebration at Healey Barn near Corbridge, Northumberland, is top of the (barn) pops.

This stylish couple are all about the natural; from the wisteria colour of the bridesmaids’ dresses to the hessian and lace details of their rustic theme, not to mention the intimate photographs taken under a fabulous woodland canopy.

But what we really love about this real wedding is how ‘natural’ is clearly far more than a one-day-only theme. From the silver Converse that Jamie slipped on under her Enzoani gown and the barbecue feast they opted for, it’s obvious that they wanted a laidback and honest feel to their ceremony and reception that really reflected them as a couple.

With images by Camilla Lucinda Photography.

A Natural Wedding at Healey Barn (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (13)

jamie says: We got engaged on 20th April 2012, at Creswell Beach in Northumberland. We‘d been for a walk along the beach when David suddenly asked me to climb up the sand dunes. He got ahead of me and, when I eventually reached the top, he was already on one knee.

Our wedding date was 20th April 2017. We chose the date because it was the anniversary of our first date and, of course, our engagement date! Unsurprisingly, it had become quite a special date for us so we looked to get married then, too.

A Natural Wedding at Healey Barn (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (9)

We had our ceremony and our reception at the gorgeous Healey Barn. When we first started looking at wedding venues we decided we wanted something different and that’s when we found Healey Barn online.

We didn’t really have a theme in mind when we were planning – we just saw little snippets of other people’s weddings on social media and fell in love with details such as hessian and lace bows for chairs and matching table runners. However, on the day everyone said they loved the vintage theme that had ended up running throughout.

Colour-wise, we decided we didn’t want anything too over the top so went for a rustic feel and quite natural, neutral shades in our colour scheme.

A Natural Wedding at Healey Barn (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (29)

My dress was an Enzoani design from The Wedding Dress Company in Corbridge. Over the past couple of years I’ve lost quite a bit of weight, so I wanted something that not only showed off my figure but something I also felt comfortable in. From the moment I tried it on, I fell in love – I knew it was the one the moment I saw my reflection in the boutique mirror.

David wore a racing green suit with a Jeff Banks shirt and tie. His shoes were RJR John Rocha, all from Debenhams. His best man wore the same.

My bridesmaids wore wisteria colour dresses from JJsHouse and silver Converse so that we all matched.

A Natural Wedding at Healey Barn (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (36)

Our photographer on the day was Camilla Lucinda and we would definitely recommend her. We met with Camilla before the wedding and she was absolutely lovely. She put us at ease instantly, and gave us some ideas for our couple photos which echoed exactly what we’d said we wanted. We loved how she captured natural photos of everyone – we didn’t want to be posing for photos all day aside from a few family pictures.

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written in the stars. a stylish wedding at newton hall – anna & ryan

June 2nd, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth

A Stylish Wedding at Newton Hall (c) Dru Dodd (31)

To finish off your week in style, we’re sharing the big day of Anna and Ryan, which provides a fabulous example of how to carry off a beautiful wedding without the hefty price tag. Cue a few trips to Hobbycraft, some thrifty online shopping purchases and gorgeous floral displays courtesy of a local college and you’ll start to get an idea of just how savvy our couple was with their planning!

Newlyweds Anna and Ryan tied the knot at the gorgeous Newton Hall – a dreamy, contemporary venue set in Northumberland. As you’ll see, this was a picture-perfect backdrop that was beautifully transformed by the bride and groom.

We just love how much time and effort they poured into their special day. From their handmade photo booth and alternative cheese cake, to their caricaturist and special hangover kits – there’s lots of quirky ideas to inspire you on the blog today.

With images by Dru Dodd.

A Stylish Wedding at Newton Hall (c) Dru Dodd (14)

anna says: We got engaged on the beach, under the stars whilst eating lobster and drinking Moet in the Dominican Republic on New Year’s Eve. Ryan had always said marriage was a long way off so I was really surprised. Romantically, Ryan said he was nipping off to the toilet, but in fact was getting the ring from the room to propose, whilst I was sitting with my meal getting cold waiting for him to get back, keeping it real! He proposed at midnight UK time which was really special as I was able to call family and friends with the exciting news.

A Stylish Wedding at Newton Hall (c) Dru Dodd (21)

We got married on 19th March 2017. We chose this date as we really wanted to get married at Newton Hall but had a budget to stick to. For any brides completely ruling out venues based on cost, this is a great way to meet your budget. We got married on a Sunday in March and it was sunny and dry! I found out afterwards that both my parents and my grandparents got married on the 19th of the month, too, which was a special touch.

When we both first stepped into Newton Hall, we knew it was where we wanted to get married. One of our first dates was to Mr Lynch in Jesmond, which is a sister venue to Newton Hall. Ryan had also taken me on a date to Low Newton for a picnic, which is where the venue is situated.

A Stylish Wedding at Newton Hall (c) Dru Dodd (35)

We didn’t have a particular colour scheme or theme for our wedding. I wanted to bring in shades of copper, apricot, blue and blush. We’re a laidback, fun couple so we wanted to incorporate that into our day whilst also maintain the traditional wedding that I had always dreamt of.

I dressed the venue myself (with the help of my bridesmaids), and bought and made all of the decorations myself. We incorporated some fun ideas on the day, such as hangover kit wedding favours and baby pictures as table numbers. We had a craft night with all of my friends in the run up to the wedding, which was great fun.

A Stylish Wedding at Newton Hall (c) Dru Dodd (69)

When it came to my attire for the day, I knew that I wanted a fit and flare lace dress with a long veil that covered my face and ended up buying my gown from Wed2Be in Gateshead.

From the moment my mam and I stepped into Wed2Be, the service was fantastic. I tried on a dress and knew straightaway that it was the one. The fit and cut was just perfect. I also purchased my veil from Wed2Be as it was exactly what I had been looking for. My total outfit came to just £669. A special mention also goes to Kayleen the dressmaker for all of my subsequent alterations.

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comet & cupid. a magical winter wedding at matfen hall – sophie & callum

May 24th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Magical Winter Wedding at Matfen Hall (c) Philip Ryott (36)

The sun may be shining outside, but for today’s real wedding we’re focusing on an elegant Christmassy affair, perfect for those of you in the midst of planning a classy winter wedding.

Sophie and Callum were wed at the stylish and striking Matfen Hall in Northumberland – sold to Sophie on the basis of its jaw-dropping entrance staircase for the bride’s grand arrival.

This gorgeous couple opted for an elegant celebrity-styled vibe with black and white tuxedos, a Cinderella-esque princess gown and luxe favours. They also remained true to themselves, however, with their favourite chocolate Krispie slices transformed into the wedding cake of their dreams.

Sophie balanced big spends with some judicious bargain-hunting, and making savings on details like her dress helped her budget for big splurges – like a visit from some real-life reindeer. Yes, you read right – real-life reindeer!

So, sit back readers and enjoy Sophie’s gorgeous winter’s tale.

With images by Philip Ryott.

A Magical Winter Wedding at Matfen Hall (c) Philip Ryott (45)

sophie says: We got engaged on Callum’s 21st birthday. It was the night before we flew to Dubai for two weeks and I’d booked a stay at Jesmond Dene House with a surprise afternoon tea with our parents.

Callum seemed nervous and, just as we were having tea, a couple had came in with the wedding planner. I commented, “Aw, how sweet! They’re planning their wedding!” Everyone suddenly seemed keen to change the subject, which I thought was a bit strange but didn’t think too much of it.

After our parents left we went back to the hotel room for a bath and to get dressed for dinner. Callum was looking at me with so much love throughout the evening and it was a gorgeous night. After we came back to our room, he suggested going onto the balcony and drinking some champagne. I agreed and went to get comfy – taking off my makeup and getting into my dressing gown – whereas Callum stayed in his suit and waistcoat!

I went back out to the balcony and he was sitting there with champagne looking gorgeous. He spoke to me under the moonlight and went back over all our special memories of early dates, fancying each other in school and holidays we’d been on. Then he said, “You know, I’m 21 today. I’m officially a man. I’ve got something to ask you”. I couldn’t contain my emotions and started to cry as he got down on one knee and asked me if I would do him the honour of becoming his wife. It was so beautiful, emotional and personal – and, of course, I said yes!

A Magical Winter Wedding at Matfen Hall (c) Philip Ryott (41)

We were married on Thursday 1st December 2016. We chose this date because I loved the idea of a magical Christmas wedding – what better day than the 1st December?! It’s the start off the official countdown to Christmas, everyone is in good spirits, Christmas music can officially be played and, of course, advent calendars!

We were married at the gorgeous Matfen Hall. I heard someone say that of all the venues they’d been to, Matfen Hall had the grandest entrance for the bride – so I had to check it out!

As soon as we entered the Great Hall we got goosebumps and a sense of ‘this is it.’ It has a traditional church-like atmosphere with its high ceilings and stained glass windows; you definitely get the feeling that a lot of beautiful things have happened there over its history. I loved the staircase entrance, too – I mean, wow! What a statement! I had real nerves walking down there to greet everyone but the excitement and anticipation was just amazing.

The Matfen Hall team were incredible, especially Victoria Paterson (wedding planner) and Peter Dawson (master of ceremonies). Their hard work and care to every detail, enquiry and question was just outstanding. Such down-to-earth, lovely, lovely people who went so far beyond their role. I can’t thank or praise them enough.

A Magical Winter Wedding at Matfen Hall (c) Philip Ryott (56)

We chose to have an elegant winter wedding theme with a Christmassy touch. I wanted the colour-scheme, decor, favours, chairs, tables – everything, really – to be very classy – with whites, silvers and sparkles. My Christmas touch was brought to life with real reindeer from Santa’s Reindeer based in Birmingham! I’d never seen reindeer before and had always wanted to; I’ve always believed in their magic and what better day to see them than on your wedding day?

Of course, my family thought I was bonkers! But my mantra is, “You can’t put a price on memories!”

I also had a reindeer-themed seating plan made by my friend Shawnee Quinn, and the tables were named after Santa’s reindeer. We had advent calendars as favours and snowflakes for name cards and the children had mini Santa hats.

A Magical Winter Wedding at Matfen Hall (c) Philip Ryott (59)

For my dress, I originally wanted a fitted, possibly mermaid-style, beaded gown and – like most brides – I ended up with the total opposite! The wedding dress outlet store WED2B had recently opened in Gateshead so we tried there first.

My cousin and matron of honour Kelly pulled out a dress that was totally different to what I’d said I wanted – it was plain and Cinderella-style. But when I saw it I just felt something. Then I tried it on and, well, wow. I felt like a real bridal princess, like all the Disney princesses in one; I couldn’t stop smiling! They added the veil and the embellished belt and I just knew. My mam and maid of honour (who’s like a brick when it comes to emotion!) started to cry. Later, my fantastic dressmaker Kayleen added a five-layer tulle train with crystals scattered along the back and sides.

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shine bright. alfred angelo for a sparkling city centre wedding in newcastle – nicola & scott

May 16th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

A New Year Wedding in the North East (c) Jamie Mac (56)

Have we got a gem of a real wedding for you this morning!

Marrying on the biggest party night of the year – New Year’s Eve – today’s real wedding couple really got into the celebratory swing of things with more sparkles and bling than you could shake a diamond-encrusted stick at.

So, prepare to be dazzled (we are getting a little carried away?!) as we travel to the North East to relive the gorgeous big day of Nicola and Scott…

With images by Jamie Mac Photography

A New Year Wedding in the North East (c) Jamie Mac (38)

nicola says: Scott and I first met at a New Year’s Eve party on Gateshead quayside in 2009. I lived in Liverpool and had come to Newcastle for my best friend’s party. At first, we had a long-distance relationship with us travelling between Liverpool and Newcastle but after 18 months I moved to Newcastle and then after six months of living there, Scott proposed on New Year’s Eve, exactly two years from first meeting. It was nice and low key, exactly how I would have wanted him to do it had I had a choice. It was at home – we were watching Jools Holland with a bottle of prosecco and at midnight he got down on one knee and proposed.

We got married on New Year’s Eve 2016. We chose this date as it was obviously of special significance to us as we had both met this date and then got engaged this date.

A New Year Wedding in the North East (c) Jamie Mac (59)

We wanted a city centre wedding, instead of a stately home, barn or hotel. We had guests travelling from America, Ireland and Liverpool and wanted them to stay in Newcastle city centre for the weekend and enjoy the city as well as the wedding.

We arranged to be married by Glyn our vicar at St Andrews Church. The church is in the heart of the city and really is special. It is the oldest church in Newcastle and has so much character.

A New Year Wedding in the North East (c) Jamie Mac (6)

When looking for a reception venue we couldn’t find anything suitable at first then my friend (coincidently the same friend who had first introduced me and Scott) told me about St Mary’s Heritage Centre on Gateshead quayside. I booked an appointment to view the venue and Scott and I instantly knew this was the venue for us and we booked it there and then. It was so different, an old church with lots of history and space. It had amazing views of the Tyne Bridge and city centre too. It was exactly what we were after. An added benefit for booking it was it was available New Year’s Eve and the quayside fireworks would also be going off at midnight. The venue was a blank canvas but I wasn’t deterred by this, I quite liked that I could put my own stamp on the place.

A New Year Wedding in the North East (c) Jamie Mac (52)

Given the timing and location of the wedding, we wanted the theme to be very city centre ‘new year’s glam’. We wanted lots of sparkle and bling. The groom and best men/ushers wore dinner suits and my dress was very sparkly. The centrepieces were falling crystal chandeliers with added crystals on the tables with sequin tablecloths, we also used lots of chalkboards as Scott is a teacher and thought this would add a quirky ‘teacher touch’ and break things up nicely.

We kept the colour scheme simple with the men in black dinner suits and bridesmaids in champagne dresses as we wanted the look to be timeless and classic. The men (apart from the groom) wore champagne dicky bows to match the bridesmaids. We also tied the whole look in with champagne sequin tablecloths.

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