Charlotte Balbier
Luxury Wedding Fairs

get set, sparkle. ian stuart for a winter wedding at armathwaite hall – emma & mark

September 20th, 2016 | Julia Braime

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Today on the blog we have some beautiful inspiration for those of you planning winter weddings as we share the details of Emma and Mark’s big day.

Following an Ikea proposal (don’t worry, he made up for it), Emma and Mark set about planning an atmospheric November wedding, complete with lots of soft candlelight and sparkling décor.

Going all out on the opportunity to wear a big dress, bride Emma chose a stunning Ian Stuart gown with accents of shimmering silver to match both the colour scheme and season. Now that’s what we call a dress with the wow-factor!

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

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emma says: We got engaged in Ikea over meatballs! Honestly! But then we had my engagement ring specially made and Mark surprised me with a trip to London to see the Lion King (I love Disney). He got us box seats and had champagne and chocolates put in the box. It was amazing!

As we loved the idea of a Christmas or winter wedding we set the date for 28th November.

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Our chosen venue was Armathwaite Hall in Keswick. We both love the Lake District and when we went to look at venues Armathwaite felt really personal. I like modern venues and Mark likes old fashioned and Armathwaite had the perfect blend of both.

To fit the time of year we went for a sparkly wedding theme (with a hint of Disney!) As we knew it would be dark outside we thought lots of sparkles and candles would look great.

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When it came to the colour scheme we knew that we didn’t want everyone in the same colour as we had an unconventional bridal party in that the maid of honour was male and we had female groomsmen. I also wanted each of the bridesmaids to have dresses that suited them, rather than sticking to a certain theme. In the end we went for pale pastel colours accented with a silver shimmer.

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I chose to wear an Ian Stuart dress from Ava Rose Hamilton. I instantly fell in love with it. I’d tried on about seven or eight dresses beforehand but none of them made me excited, or felt quite so special. I knew I wanted a big dress – the sort that you can only ever wear on your wedding day – but also wanted something that really suited me. I loved the silver woven into the lace of the dress and that it had a huge skirt but fitted silk body. I never thought I would get a strapless dress but the minute I tried it on I knew it was right.

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pastels & petals. a beautifully traditional wedding in the north west – liz & andy

September 6th, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Pretty and Traditional Wedding in the North West (c) Lee Brown Photography (64)

It’s only Wednesday and already we’ve seen so much pretty on the blog this week. And we hope you’re prepared for even more of the good stuff as this morning we’re sharing the gorgeous big day of newlyweds, Liz and Andy.

Deciding on a relaxed and traditional wedding with a pretty pastel colour scheme, today’s bride and groom opted for a church ceremony followed by a hotel reception, complete with elegant décor.

Though subtle, the result is a stunning celebration with everything from the wedding party’s attire to the beautiful blooms and classic transport tying together perfectly!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Lee Brown Photography.

A Pretty and Traditional Wedding in the North West (c) Lee Brown Photography (8)

liz says: We got engaged on 1st March 2014. I had been at home all day cleaning whilst Andy was out refereeing. I had put tea in the oven and had a shower, put my onesie on and was laid on the sofa watching Ant and Dec’s Saturday night takeaway. Andy came in the room, switched the TV off and passed me an empty egg box. In each hole was a little note and in the final one was a plastic egg with a ring in. He got down on one knee and asked if I would marry him.

We set the date for 23rd July 2016. We were looking for a date at the end of July as my sister had her GCSEs so we wanted them to be over in time and this date was also suitable for both the church and reception venue. It wasn’t until I told my mum the date that we realised that my grandparents had got married on the same date in 1955, exactly 61 years ago. It then seemed like fate that we should get married on that day.

A Pretty and Traditional Wedding in the North West (c) Lee Brown Photography (9)

Our ceremony was at St Mary’s Church in Partington. My parents had been married there in 1988 and it is where my grandad’s ashes are so it’s close to our hearts. Our reception was held at The Deanwater Hotel in Woodford, Cheshire. Andy used to work there and it suited our needs perfectly. We had a number of guests travelling from afar and there were enough rooms for people to stay the night before and the night of the wedding. We had a large number of guests and the hotel was big enough to cater for us all without it feeling too busy.

We decided to have a traditional wedding with a pastel colour scheme. We are quite a traditional couple and this style was simple but effective. We wanted the day to feel relaxed, nothing too ‘in your face’ and it worked perfectly. The pastels were lovely and soft and worked well as we had quite a lot of guests and didn’t want anything too bright in the reception venue which may look too much. Also, I have an English rose complexion and so the pastel colours tend to suit me really well.

A Pretty and Traditional Wedding in the North West (c) Lee Brown Photography (47)

When it came to my dress I picked a princess style design. I tried on more than 30 dresses, all different styles, and liked most of them. When I tried this dress on I cried, then my mum cried and I knew I wanted to get married wearing it. The dress was from Agape Bridal Boutique and the staff there were fantastic. They added a bit of sparkle for me and did the alterations in-house. I felt a million dollars when I tried it on and the morning of the wedding, I was speechless as to how beautiful it looked and felt.

Andy picked an unusual checked three-piece suit with tails (which was gorgeous) for him and the groomsmen. We then picked the cravats and waistcoats to match the bridesmaid dresses, which were a lovely pastel blue. As a surprise to the boys, I bought them all pastel blue socks to wear too! The suits were from Best Man in Great Moor, again, the staff there were brilliant.

I found the bridesmaid dresses online at Mix Bridal. I could choose the exact colour I wanted and they were beautiful dresses, they all looked absolutely stunning. I had a family friend make alterations so they would fit perfectly.

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charming cherry blossom. charlotte balbier for a summer wedding at hurlston hall – jennifer & adam

September 5th, 2016 | Julia Braime

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (39)

Today we’re packing in an extra punch of pretty with a second real wedding for to feast your eyes on.

For anyone planning a classic wedding that will truly stand the test of time, Jennifer and Adam’s big day is a perfect example of how it’s done; starting with a traditional church ceremony and ending with a lively reception at an elegant venue.

The dusky pink colour scheme works perfectly for the time of year and we just love the delicate touches of cherry blossom dotted throughout.

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (52)

jennifer says: We got engaged in September 2014, while we were away on holiday in Antalya, Turkey. The hotel was amazing and there was a gorgeous private beach. We went for a stroll on the second night and Adam brought his camera. He wanted to get a picture of the both of us so I sat in one of the sun huts. He set the camera up on a timer and once ready he ran over and got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife – just in time for the camera to capture the moment! I loved that he didn’t just ask me to marry him – he specifically asked me to become his wife, which was really special to me.

We picked 28th May 2016, as the date for the wedding. It was a bank holiday weekend and we wanted to give everyone an extra day to recover – we are party animals after all!

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (79)

We got married at the lovely St Michael’s Church in Aughton. If you went there yourself, you’d know why. The people there are amazing too. Our reception was at Hurlston Hall, in Ormskirk. We were over the moon with the venue. The views from the function room are breath-taking as it overlooks the golf course, plus it has an outside balcony so everyone could be in the sun.

We didn’t intend on having a theme but it kind of brought itself together – pink cherry blossom ran through pretty much everything, giving the wedding a slight oriental vibe. As such the colour scheme was of course, pink!

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (25)

My dress was a Charlotte Balbier design – Iscoyd Park – the one that Charlotte herself chose to get married in! Although I did get it made an extra metre longer as I wanted a huge train. It wasn’t what I thought I’d go for at all. When I tried it on it was like Cinderella finding that shoe; it is a truly beautiful dress and Charlotte is an amazing designer. I got the veil to match too, which was a last minute decision! I’m so glad I did though. I got my outfit from Belle’s Bridal Boutique in Liverpool, a really cute bridal shop and the girls there are lovely.

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city chic. a retro styled bridal shoot in manchester

August 31st, 2016 | Rachel Parry

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (12)

Today on the blog we have a little something for you urban brides out there.

In response to brides-to-be commenting that while there is plenty of inspiration for couples marrying in the countryside but there isn’t so much for those planning city centre celebrations, Lancaster-based wedding photographer Arusha set about creating a retro styled bridal shoot set against bold Manchester backgrounds.

The result is a strong collection of edgy images that show a wedding in a built-up area can be just as striking as those in rolling countryside, with brick, graffiti and even metal shutters providing standout photo opportunities.

To explain more about the looks created and areas visited, we’ll hand over the blog to the lady who captured all the action…

With images by Arusha’s Images Photography.

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (55)

arusha says: I spent many years living and working in Manchester, and the city was the inspiration for this shoot. I love the old backstreets there, the mix of modern apartments, and old alleyways. I think that the bright statement graffiti of the Northern Quarter brings so much life to the city. By contrast I also wanted to include a more modern background, and Salford Quays and The Lowry are perfect for that, with all the glass, metal and clean lines.

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (7)

Working as part of a two-man team with hair stylist and makeup artist Hannah Wells, of Beau Tink Studio, my aim for the shoot was to inspire my urban brides to get creative, and to show some different bridal looks and locations in the city.

I photograph a whole range of weddings, and in that process I have found that city and retro brides-to-be have often commented that they feel there is a stronger focus on more countryside and boho style weddings when they are looking for inspiration for their day. I love a bohemian country wedding, but I also love bold city weddings, with the strong urban backgrounds that cities provide. I also wanted to show that a little bit of retro and grunge can be stunning on a wedding day.

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (48)

I coordinated the styling, choosing to buy as brightly coloured flowers as I could for the bouquet, and tied them with a simple ribbon, which we were able to add rainbow streamer ribbons to as the shoot went on.

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in full bloom. stewart parvin for a spring wedding at statham lodge – laura & mike

August 30th, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Spring Wedding at Statham Lodge (c) Jonny Draper Photography (62)

Spring has official sprung in today’s real wedding, which features beautiful blooms in abundance!

Centring the styling of their wedding round their favourite season, Laura and Mike went to town on sensational spring arrangements with their centrepieces among the most impressive we have ever seen!

We love the fresh, pretty colour scheme that brings the whole look together and have to mention Laura’s gorgeous long-sleeved lace detailed dress – just stunning!

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

A Spring Wedding at Statham Lodge (c) Jonny Draper Photography (108)

laura says: We got engaged at the summit of Win Hill in the Peak District on my birthday, October 13th 2014. Mike had planned a romantic walk and picnic, but the weather turned and it became a battle against the autumn elements. Despite this, we had the most beautiful views into Ladybower and Hope. Mike produced a diamond ring after the picnic, but lost his composure and forgot to actually ask me ‘the question’…or even get down on one knee. After a few minutes of awkward suspense, Mike managed to ask me and I said yes.

When we first met, we discovered our mutual love for the outdoors. We would always plan days together out walking, cycling or running. Spring is our favourite time of year when the days get longer and we start to plan our summer days out. So for us, it was always going to be a spring wedding. We chose the spring bank holiday weekend to allow our guests a much-needed day off before heading back to work after the wedding.

A Spring Wedding at Statham Lodge (c) Jonny Draper Photography (94)

A Spring Wedding at Statham Lodge (c) Jonny Draper Photography (93)

We made a big move together over the Pennines from Leeds to Manchester for work and family reasons in 2014. We decided to live in Lymm for its easy access to open countryside, canal paths and woodland. We fell in love with the area and plan to lay down our roots and start a family here so it seemed right to marry in the area too. We had our ceremony at St Peter’s, our local church in Oughtrington, which sit sits rather majestically on the Cheshire skyline in Lymm. We always wanted a church wedding, as we believe it adds real meaning to our vows and to our marriage as a whole.

For the reception we chose Statham Lodge, a large Georgian country house near Lymm. We chose it following a meeting with their wedding coordinator, Andy Ball. He impressed us with his professionalism and warmness and we immediately entrusted him with our big day with no reservations.

A Spring Wedding at Statham Lodge (c) Jonny Draper Photography (71)

Our theme was simplistic, in that the majority of the work was done by the beautiful spring scenery and weather on the day. Our flowers, decorations and outfits were chosen to complement the theme of the spring outdoors.

We chose a sky blue and lemon colour scheme with the aim of recreating a scene of daffodils, tulips and daises on a crisp sunny blue sky.

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keepin’ it real: say hello to squashed apple photography and film – plus an amazing gift for our readers!

August 29th, 2016 | Julia Braime

Squashed Apple Photography & Film (3)

This afternoon we’re introducing you to a new Sponsor of ours that offers the most important keepsakes from a wedding day – photography and videography.

That’s right, the fabulously talented team at Manchester-based Squashed Apple can capture the real essence and emotion of a couple’s big day both in images and footage, providing memories that last a lifetime and with the power to transport brides and grooms back to that very moment in time.

If this sounds right up your street you might be interested to know that Squashed Apple will throw in £1,300 worth of albums and presentation for free for every Brides Up North reader that books their full day photography and full wedding film packages.

Now to tell us more about their style of shooting, we’ll hand over the blog to one of the Squashed Apple team. Take it away Carlo…

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Tell us a little about your background ? 

carlo says: I have been in this industry for around nine years and fell into photography by accident really. A friend needed a hand on a wedding and simply passed me a camera, well that was it – I was sold – and filming was a natural progression. I wanted to create a brand, which was not only affordable but offered fantastic value for money. I’m a believer that every couple should have access to our services and it’s this customer focus that has seen us sustain more than 100 weddings for the last seven consecutive years.

Intro – Goodbyes are not forever from SquashedApple Pro on Vimeo.

What attracted you to the wedding industry specifically? 

I love weddings, in fact if I wasn’t doing this I would be a wedding planner. It’s an amazing life event that has everything; they are fun, sad, joyful and emotional. I find there is so much going on in a wedding day that can make you an amazing creator.

And what is it about your job that you love? 

Well apart from being your own boss, it gives you the freedom to create, plus tonnes of family time.

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How would you describe your style of wedding photography/videography?

Squashed Apple brings collectively everything to the table. We’ve never had a set style, but I believe it’s important to be able to adapt and present something that suits the couple. I believe it’s important to engage with a brides of all ages, therefore I don’t really believe in styled shoots or using models. I want to keep it real. We can have just as much fun with a bride approaching 60-years-old as a bride in her twenties. Our oldest bride last year was 72 – so cute!

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