February 13th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
It’s not every day that we see a llama making an appearance in a wedding photo. But that’s exactly what we have in store for you today on the blog, as we head to the wonderfully unique Wellbeing Farm in Lancashire – an alternative wedding venue with that all-important wow factor. Bride and groom, Cassie and Sam could really put their stamp on the space when they tied the knot there last summer – decorating it with gorgeous floral displays, homemade jam jars and even milk churns.
Music played a big part in the couple’s day too – and not just in the way that you’d first expect. Along with a guitarist and live band, Cassie and Sam incorporated records and song lyrics within their centrepieces and menus – a nostalgic throwback to their early dating days in Manchester.
Other stand-out ideas likely to get you hovering over your Pin button include a wedding cheese cake, limoncellos for favours (a lovely link to their honeymoon destination in Italy) and an all-out indulgent cake cart, complete with caterpillar cake!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Slice of Pie Photography.
cassie says: We got engaged on 20th November 2015 at home. We were about to go to New York and Las Vegas for Sam’s 30th birthday and I had a feeling he was going to propose then. Turns out, he surprised me – and himself – and did an impromptu proposal at home. The fire was roaring and there was prosecco and cheese on toast – and then it started to snow. It was perfect. We kept it a secret from friends and family for three whole weeks while we were away.
We got married on 26th August 2017. We didn’t want to put too much pressure on a specific date and wanted to get a great venue. We had said the August bank holiday weekend would be perfect. The wedding venue we went for was up and coming and luckily had availability that weekend, so we reserved the date, and two weeks later it was all booked!
We got married at The Wellbeing Farm in Edgworth. We had both the ceremony and reception here. We chose this venue as it was so very different to the traditional wedding venues we had been to before. It definitely had the wow factor and potential to be flexible in what we wanted. It was quite a new in terms of a wedding venue and they had big plans for additional features, which we loved.
We had a music theme as we both love music and met while going out to indie clubs in Manchester. Our centrepieces were records, featuring one of our favourite song titles. Each table also had a section of our favourite lyrics from each song displayed with the menu.
We had a bright colourful summer colour scheme and the bridesmaids and groomsmen matched each other. The colours were powder blue, mint green, lemon, coral and lilac. We went these shades as they were summery and were a great burst of colour.
I chose an Allure dress, which was all-lace and mermaid style. It was the first dress I tried on at a wedding fair but I thought I best try some more on first. My mum was the one who spotted it and told me to try it on. Mums know best! My mother-in-law found it in a shop in Ramsbottom called The White Gallery. It turned out the dress was being discontinued and we got it half price, which was a bonus!
February 8th, 2018 | Julia Braime
What do a horsebox, a pizza oven and a donut wall all have in common? Nope, this isn’t our attempt at a bad joke, but rather they all feature in today’s stunner of a real wedding.
The lovely Jessica and her beau Mike booked out all of the cottages at their stunning rural venue the night before the main event and treated their guests to the finest in laidback outdoor cuisine to get everyone in the mood for the celebration ahead. Family and friends ate, drank and were merry, turning their wedding into a whole weekend to remember.
In planning their rustic big day, Jessica and Mike wanted to create the sense that the colours and textures were “organic…the same indoors as out”. Looking at their gorgeous autumnal palette, the groom’s tweed and the bride’s woodland blooms, we think they definitely achieved their mission.
With images by Jess Yarwood Photography.
jessica says: We got engaged on a mini road trip. Mike simply came into the house one afternoon and said “let’s go!’ We started at Drury where we stopped at the chippy, drove all the way to the top of Hope Mountain, found a rocky outcrop and sat and ate chips. As I was looking out over the beautiful views of Wales and Cheshire a ring box caught my eye.
Our wedding date was 27th November 2017. There was no particular reason behind the date, but I’d always liked the idea of an autumn wedding. The colours of the leaves are so beautiful, although I was a little bit worried about unpredictable weather.
Our ceremony and reception was at Combermere Abbey in Whitchurch. We booked the accommodation at Combermere for the night before meaning that both sets of family and friends could stay over and get to know each other. We had a total of nine cottages, which easily accommodated 49 guests. We transported a pizza oven in a horse box and served pizza, nibbles and drinks all night. The bridal party moved onto the Stone Lodge later on, and continued the party.
The theme we picked was rustic to fit in with our surroundings and the Abbey grounds, so we incorporated lots of wood and greenery. Our colour scheme was autumnal to fit in with what was going on outdoors – we wanted everything to flow and feel quite organic; that the colours and textures were the same indoors as out.
I chose a Rebecca Ingram dress – it was a lace and tulle dress in a blush pink colour with white lace and matching veil purchased from Aristocrats in Chester. The staff were extremely helpful and made the process very easy. I chose it because I loved it on the hanger, and my mum told me before I’d even tried it on that it was the one for me. She was 100% right!
Mike wore a tweed suit jacket and waistcoat bought from Chester City Gate. He hired the trousers from Swarbricks in Manchester to match with the ushers’ suits. We’d seen Swarbricks at a wedding show and we loved their range of tweed.
We had three sets of bridesmaids: the older girls wore Jenny Packham from Debenhams, the younger ones wore Next dresses and the babies wore Monsoon. They were all in shades of burgundy and pinks to complement my gown.
February 5th, 2018 | Laura McDonagh
The life of a creative wedding industry type is a busy one and photographer Camilla from Camilla Lucinda Photography wasn’t alone in feeling exhausted at the end of a hectic and successful summer season. However, instead of hanging up her camera and kicking back for a well-deserved break, she rallied together a group of like-minded North West and East-based industry experts for some sublime creative play at her family’s farm in Carlisle. And boy, are we glad she did.
This rustic, nature-inspired autumn wedding shoot is full of charming homespun details with crates, chalkboards and pops of autumnal colour all making an appearance. It also features the bridal trend we can’t get enough of: yup, a sumptuous berry lip. Half prim and proper, half full-on fashion-y, we’re huge fans of this bold, seasonal look.
If you’re planning on getting hitched in autumn, this one definitely is for you. Making the most of the season’s gorgeous light, Camilla showcases the kind of sun-soaked photographs you can aspire to if you’ve set the date for September or October.
With images by Camilla Lucinda Photography. Model Sian Ashton.
camilla says: After a busy summer season for all suppliers involved in the wedding industry, I approached a couple I knew regarding doing something a bit more fun and creative. When shooting weddings (or creating bouquets, headwear, cakes etc), you tend to be creating something to a fairly strict brief – with the shoot, though, we wanted to establish an overall theme and then let each supplier run with their own ideas. It was a shoot where we could all afford to think a little bit more ‘outside the box’. Personally, I wanted to do something that refreshed my creativity, and allowed me to play with natural light. After all, you can only really test your ideas on a shoot like this rather than on someone’s big day.
The title we all worked off was ‘A Rustic, Sun-Drenched Autumnal Wedding’. I created a big mood board for all the suppliers and let them use that as their starting point for inspiration. Colour-wise, we all looked towards plants and trees in autumn and the colours they naturally produce: darker green hues, maroons, rich reds, as well as burnt oranges. The sunshine really worked with the scheme, drenching the photographs and props in beautiful golden sunlight.
Colt Close Farm is our family farm; my grandparents – both 91! – currently live there. Since starting my wedding photography career and shooting lots of different barn-styled weddings, it’s been on my mind how amazing our family farm could be for a wedding or styled shoot. Therefore, it was totally my first choice location-wise. It allowed us to have full run of the property and surrounding land too, which was a huge bonus.
We wanted the styling to be in keeping with the look of the farm, so a mix of elegant vintage and a natural rustic vibe. The farmhouse itself is a beautiful sandstone brick building, so with the table set-up we went down the vintage/elegant route with a floral table runner, vintage table settings and candle holders from my gran’s personal collection. Calligraphy-wise, Jessica from Handwritten Decor created wooden and chalkboard signs, following the current trend in the industry and fitting nicely with the rustic farmyard setting. The flowers were supplied by Roseberry Floral and were stunning. We mixed and matched lots of details in different settings, for example the floral table runner was used on the table set up, over the bride’s forearms behind the cake, at the bottom of the Pimp Your Prosecco station, and around the Love At First Bite setup – it’s creative (and cost-effective!) to reuse elements for different parts of a day.
February 5th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
There’s something effortlessly cool about an informal wedding, and we just love the garden-party vibe of Nic and Kelly’s wedding celebration. They were even lucky enough to get good weather!
Though guests may have enjoyed a relaxed day, no detail was left to chance. Even the date was planned meticulously so Nic and Kelly’s engagement anniversary and wedding anniversary would be exactly half a year apart, meaning they have something to celebrate every six months. Now that’s forward thinking!
They also had some fabulous details and treats, including a very cute table plan sporting photographs of each guest, a delectable ice cream van, a table topped with a colourful selection of cakes and a civilised game of croquet on the lawn. Over to the groom, Nic, to tell us more…
With images by Shane Webber Photography.
nic says: We got engaged on 12th January 2015. Kelly always liked the idea of a London tourist hotspot trip, finishing up on Millennium Bridge with a love lock. When we got to the bridge, I pretended to have lost the padlock we had bought for the occasion. I pulled out a special heart-shaped lock that I had inscribed with the words “forever hold the key to my heart”. The engagement ring was attached, and Kelly had to unlock it with the key for the proposal to be complete. We then went to the Shard for drinks – another surprise bucket-list moment for Kelly, who had no idea what had been planned months before!
We got married on 12th July 2017. We chose that date as we always wanted something to celebrate every six months to the day. The 12th January is our getting together anniversary/getting engaged day and 12th July will be our wedding anniversary.
The ceremony took place at Didsbury House Hotel and the reception was at Eleven Didsbury Park. The venue was ideal for us as it was both ceremony and reception in one but, as the reception was down the road, there was a sense of ‘arriving’ for the evening do! The venue has beautiful grounds – it was the ideal size for our 50 planned guests and we wanted an informal setting that felt more like a garden party than a traditional wedding. We would definitely recommend the venue: the setting is ideal for an intimate wedding, the food was top and the whole team that worked on the wedding could not have been more helpful. It was like having the best house party you have ever been to.
In terms of a theme, we both love sunflowers and so they were everywhere. There was no real reason – we just think they’re pretty. Aside from that, the theme was relaxed to suit our non-traditional atmosphere. For our colour scheme, we chose off-whites with a pop of yellow to work with the sunflowers – nothing too formal.
For my suit, I decided this was my one life occasion where I could go all out! I wore a black wool Givenchy suit, a pair of patent leather Dsquared2 Oxford shoes, a Lanvin black bow tie and a Dolce & Gabbana gold label white dress shirt. I wanted this day to be my red carpet moment!
Kelly wore a blush champagne dress from Catherine Deane. Detailing was vintage lace and it had a small train. Kelly looked beautiful! The dress was effortlessly sophisticated and complemented her skin tone perfectly. Her shoes were from Jimmy Choo. We had always joked that Kelly would say ‘I do’ in Choo!
Two of Kelly’s sisters were bridesmaids and wore grey multiway maxi dresses from Coast. Again, there was no real theme for makeup, nails or shoes – it was important for our guests to all feel relaxed and great on our special day. My brother Toby wore a black suit from The Kooples, matched with a charcoal Dolce & Gabbana tie and shoes.
February 2nd, 2018 | Julia Braime
While planning a wedding is super exciting, it’s also classed as one of life’s most stressful events and so it’s good to have support to hand to ensure you’re organised and not overwhelmed by the task ahead.
If you’re already feeling a buried in the wedmin, or know exactly what you want but aren’t sure how to make it a reality, then the Sponsor we’re introducing on the blog today is going to be very useful to you. So, join us as we welcome professional wedding planners Andrea Swift (Northern Ambassador and Supreme Member of UK Alliance of Wedding Planners) and Debbie Rainford (UK Alliance of Wedding Planners) of Fabulous Together.
Dubbed as “Fairy Godmothers” and “Secret Weapons” these are the ladies in the know, who can help bring your wedding dreams to fruition. Whether you require a full or partial planning service Andrea and Debbie will be there to bounce ideas off, provide professional advice and banish any pre-wedding worries.
So, let’s hear more from the dynamic duo on how their approach, services and style.
Can you tell us a little about your backgrounds and how was Fabulous Together was formed?
andrea & debbie say: After working together on several large-scale luxury weddings we had a ‘lightbulb’ moment – we realised that we not only shared the same ethos, the same professional values and the same sense of fun, but ultimately, the same vision. By combining our experience and expertise, we decided we could offer the region the ultimate luxury wedding planning service: Fabulous Together Weddings.
Why would you advise couples to hire a wedding planner?
Planning a wedding can be really stressful and we know how time consuming it can be too. A big part of our role is to match our clients with people we think will best suit their style, vision and personality, then deliver the wedding day they had always dreamed of and we keep ourselves up-to-date with all the latest trends, ensuring each individual wedding has its own unique ‘wow’ factor.
Can you outline the services that you offer to brides and grooms?
Our Full Planning Service includes a detailed consultation and bespoke proposal after which clients are assigned a senior planner who will remain by their side throughout the whole process.
Our Partial Planning package would be better suited to those clients who have already undertaken some of the planning themselves. Fabulous Together Weddings will review all bookings and plans to-date, manage the booked suppliers and stay with the couple right to the end of the wedding day, ensuring everything flows smoothly.
Proving that distance really doesn’t need to be a barrier when creating your dream wedding, our Fabulous Together Weddings’ unique Destination UK service is perfect for couples who live overseas but want to marry in the UK.
What would you say to couples who think hiring a wedding planner means they will lose control of their wedding day?
Absolutely not! The relationship we have with our couples is always collaborative. We are here to help and bring their ideas to life. Think of us as super organised fairy godmothers – we’ll offer professional advice when it’s needed, banish worries and ensure everything runs smoothly from start to finish.
What area of planning would you say that couples find the most stressful and how can you help?
It is always hard keeping everyone happy and it can be a delicate balancing act, especially where parents are concerned. As we have so much experience in dealing with these sometimes tricky situations, we can provide an independent view that often puts things into perspective. That and the weather! We always ensure we have a good Plan B so we are prepared for whatever the British climate throws at us!
What is it that you love about the world of weddings and what is the favourite part of your job?
Sometimes it’s the simplest thing, that moment in the ceremony where the couple are officially married – the kiss, the love, the intimacy of it all – we feel privileged to be a part of it. But we also love hearing the guests chanting for one more song on the dance floor after a stunning band set or catching them talking in the toilets about it being the best wedding they have ever been to! At the end of it all we can slip quietly away knowing we have helped our couple have the very best day imaginable!
Are you noticing any trends in weddings at the moment and, if so, what are they?
A key element now though is that couples want the wedding to last as long as possible. We are seeing more and more ‘wedding weekends’ often at lavish venues, but increasingly at home or in the grounds of a close family member’s property, providing a more personalised option.
Do you have any particular memorable moments from weddings you’ve organised?
Lots and lots of memorable moments, yes, but some real stand out ones include the groom and his eight best men singing as they walked down the aisle, it was a definite ‘hairs standing up on the back of your neck’ moment. Of course, it did help that they were all professional singers! Then there was the wedding where we were waiting (outside in the rain), to get a call from Heathrow airport to see if the cloud base was high enough for our couple’s air acrobatic display to take place – it meant that Heathrow would have to alternate take off and landings to allow for the seven-minute display – when they finally said yes, we literally had two minutes to get the guests outside and in position. It was stressful but completely amazing when it happened as if on cue.
January 29th, 2018 | Rachel Parry
This morning we’re catching up with our wonderful Sponsor, North-West based photographer Nik Bryant, who had an epic 2017 and now is all set and raring to go on weddings for 2018.
Keen to ensure his couples have the very best day possible so their joy and emotions are reflected in the gorgeous images he takes, Nik is always willing to go the extra mile for brides and grooms and is often praised for his calm and helpful demeanour.
Furthermore, Nik is eager to offer his couples additional services to document the full picture of the day and so is busy making plans to partner with a videographer. Watch this space!
So, if you’re about to embark on the photography search note the name, as we hear more from Nik on his passion for weddings.
How would you describe your style of photography and the approach you take to capturing a big day?
nik says: Describing my style is a little difficult – I am a little bit documentary and a little bit posed photography I would say. So, floating round and mingling with people and capturing natural moments mixed in with fun portraits.
It’s all about being involved and knowing what’s happening and when something will happen and then being in the right place to capture it. For couple portraits it’s about finding some nice places to shoot and then letting the couple have some time to themselves and interact whilst having fun and getting on their level.
What is it that you love most about your job?
That I get to go to weddings and call it a job! I love photography and have done since I started shooting about 12 years ago. To be able to do something I love and constantly be invited to capture parties and say that it’s my job is pretty cool.
In your opinion what are the most important things for a couple to consider when deciding which photographer to book for their wedding?
I honestly think the most important thing for a couple when looking for a photographer comes in two parts. The first part being that you honestly love their work. Find a photographer whose work you love, even if you don’t know why you love it but it strikes something with you that’s the first part of the battle.
The second part comes with meeting or speaking to your photographer. Making sure you click with them and they are what you want for your wedding as we are there all day and spend so much time with you.
I love getting to know my couples so when it comes to the wedding day it doesn’t feel awkward having me around.
What sets you apart from other wedding photographers?
This is really difficult to answer but a lot of my couples and their families have said that I am really relaxed and easy going but with enthusiasm and excitement throughout the day. I genuinely love my work and get excited for every wedding I shoot.
I find that I have a way of getting on the same level as my couples and it becomes more like having a friend capture their day rather than just a photographer.
I also like to try and capture something of a statement image. Something different and cool!
Do you have a favourite part of the wedding day to capture?
I think my favourite part of the wedding day is probably bridal prep in the morning. That time meeting up with the bride and all her bridesmaids and mum. Its where it all starts and kind of sets the tone for the day.
The morning is so full of fun and emotion its really great to be around for and to have that insight into the dynamic of a group of bridesmaids and the bride.
Reflecting on 2017 what would you say was your biggest highlight?
Personally, the arrival of my baby boy has been my biggest highlight (my wife will probably read this so if I didn’t say that I would be in trouble).
However, the biggest highlight for 2017 on a professional level has to be the fact that I feel I have really defined my style and how I work and I am really happy with everything I have shot. It was one of the best years for my wedding photography and I have really built my confidence. I have made some amazing friends with my couples and other wedding suppliers too. I have learnt new skills and just learnt to take on whatever happens on a wedding day.
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