Charlotte Balbier

real wedding recap summer 2017: a magical bonfire night wedding at santo’s higham farm – bekki & thomas

June 29th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Pretty Bonfire Night Wedding (c) Sally Eaves (21)

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 3rd July 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from the first half of the year so far. 

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.

This wonderful Bonfire Night wedding gives us all the fuzzy feels – think hearty food, toffee apples, sparklers and a striking orange colour scheme.

Brave bride Bekki got hands-on with her rustic theme, creating delicate paper roses and assembling glass jars, logs slices, candles and greenery, with a little help from friends and family.

With so much gorgeousness it seems wrong to highlight one feature – but please, do me a favour and check out that plait. So. Many. Hair. Goals. You can thank us later.

With photography by Brides Up North Sponsor, Sally Eaves.

A Pretty Bonfire Night Wedding (c) Sally Eaves (30)

bekki says: It was difficult for Thomas to organise a proposal without me getting suspicious as we’d recently had our first son, Robbie, and I didn’t ever want to leave him. So instead of organising something big, I came downstairs from putting Robbie to bed to find the room lit with candles and a big bunch of flowers. Thomas pulled me into his arms and asked me if I would marry him. The best part is, before he popped the question the only thought that ran through my head was, “Whatever this is, it better be worth him lighting my display candles!”

We were married on Saturday 5th November 2016. We only ever considered an autumn or winter wedding and we thought it would be nice to have it as close to the anniversary of us becoming a couple as we could. It just happened that the closest weekend our venue could manage was Bonfire Night. It’s one of our favourite nights of the year; we love fireworks and the atmosphere so it pretty much made up our mind!

A Pretty Bonfire Night Wedding (c) Sally Eaves (19)

We had both our ceremony and reception at Santo’s Higham Farm, Derbyshire. It was the first ever hotel we’d stayed at together. We found the room online at the last minute for my 18th and as soon as we got there we both said it would make an amazing wedding venue. And so we returned some years later for a consultation and they couldn’t do enough for us.

We wanted a rustic, autumnal feel to our wedding to match the season and so we combined natural wood, logs and ivy with hints of sparkle and glitter to tie in with Bonfire Night and the fireworks. I got crafty and aimed to make as much as I could myself, with the help of friends and family. Thank goodness for Pinterest!

Orange and grey were our chosen colours. Think autumn leaves. They tied in perfectly with the date. We also knew very few couples choose orange as a wedding colour scheme and we liked how uncommon it was.

A Pretty Bonfire Night Wedding (c) Sally Eaves (31)

When I first went dress shopping I was adamant I wasn’t going to have a sweetheart neckline or a big dress but otherwise I had no real idea what I wanted. After trying on close to 50 dresses in various shops I visited a fourth shop – a spur of the moment trip to The Bridal Suite. I tried on every dress I liked but none of them were ‘the dress’ so the consultant picked one instead. I instantly screwed my nose up at it but agreed to try it on. I came out of the changing room to see my maid of honour crying! They added the veil and I knew it was the one – sweetheart neckline and all! Finally!

The ladies who helped pamper me for my wedding day were incredible, too. I had my nails done at DLR Beauty and Nails at the 3D Clinic in Pinxton and Paige White worked her magic on my makeup.

Laura from Shillitto’s Hair put up with the worst as she had to deal with me changing my mind on how I wanted mine and the bridesmaids’ hair the day before the wedding without the opportunity for another trial. Despite this, she did an amazing job on us all and we received compliments all round.

A Pretty Bonfire Night Wedding (c) Sally Eaves (42)

We wanted to incorporate tweed into Tom’s wedding outfit so teamed a tweed waistcoat with a sharkskin blue suit from Moss, finished off with light tan brogues and an orange tie.

Our bridesmaids wore Little Mistress grey maxi dresses with an embellished top while the groomsmen wore the same suit as Tom but with the matching waistcoat rather than tweed.

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snap happy. introducing take a pic

June 9th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

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As technology and trends move on, some wedding traditions are going the same way as sugared almonds and falling by the wayside. Disposable table cameras are one such tradition that appear to be on the way out.

The idea in principal – encouraging guests to capture the day through their eyes resulting in a different set of images to the professional photographer’s – is a good one. However, the cost and process of collecting and printing the films can be rather expensive and timely. And so today we’re excited to introduce a modern and stress-free way to enable your guests play photographers but without the laborious developing on the other side.

Our Sponsor, Take a Pic, specialises in hiring a range of digital cameras for the wedding day, which can be used by the groom and bridal parties during the prep and by guests during the main event – resulting in high quality images and video from all angles from the day, meaning the newlyweds don’t miss a thing. Furthermore, with the recent introduction of action cameras, Take a Pic, can even offer the latest technology to capture the all-important adventure honeymoon too.

We’ll now hand you over to the family team behind the business to get a close-up on their digital offering…

Take A Pic (2)

When and why was Take a Pic first set up?

take a pic say: The business was established in 2015 following a wedding of one of our directors. After looking into buying disposable cameras for the wedding tables we realised how out dated the cameras really are, and so we purchased ten compact digital cameras to use instead. After the wedding we decided other couples might like to follow suit, so we began to hire the cameras out to others for their weddings at a similar cost to the disposables. From there Take a Pic quickly grew into offering a range of different camera equipment to hire for other occasions.

What does the business offer to wedding couples?

We offer wedding couples the option to capture their special day from a different angle, allowing their guests to take pictures and videos throughout their day, which they can look back on in years to come. We have different camera packages to suit any wedding day from simple compacts for the tables or better quality cameras for the groom/bridal party. We have packages with HD video camcorders, instant print cameras for guest books and message boards and action cameras for capturing that adventure honeymoon. All packages can be booked online for your selected dates and durations, with free delivery to your address and free return at the Post Office for convenience.

We know that most of us nowadays have smartphones with cameras, which are perfectly capable of taking quality images and video footage in HD, however we have found that couples would rather have their wedding day photos and videos all in one place, be the first to view them afterwards, get the surprise of the amount of images and also get to realise parts of their wedding they didn’t see. Not only do guests not like to use their phones too much at the wedding, couples generally don’t want to see them shared on social media or have random photos sent from everybody who took some. Hiring digital cameras encourages your guests to start snapping away at the things they wouldn’t normally.

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Why would you encourage couples to hire digital cameras for their big day in addition to a professional photographer?

We would always recommend hiring a set of digital cameras in addition to that all important photographer. We do not provide a photography service, just the means to allow you and your guests to become photographers yourselves. Having digital cameras around at your wedding allows you to capture the more natural moments and perhaps the more embarrassing moments too. Remember your photographer may only be with you for a small part of the day, and they may focus their attention on the bride and groom, whilst the digital cameras can capture anything through the entire day.

You photographer may only be able to spend time with one of the wedding parties before the ceremony, so we have created a package aimed at having camera with both parties to be able to capture the night before or getting ready in the morning. You may start using the equipment as soon as you received it.

What are the benefits of digital cameras over disposable cameras for a wedding?

Disposable cameras are the traditional option for capturing the other parts of your wedding that your photographer may not get or be around for. As technology has advanced over the last 20 years disposable cameras have stayed relatively the same, in fact processing the film has become more of a skill, thus become more expensive. Digital cameras provide a simple alternative to disposable cameras with the main benefit of having the ability to take better quality images and a lot more of them; depending on the size of memory cards supplied you could take thousands more images on a single camera than the largest film. Once the cost of film processing is factored into the price we find that hiring digital cameras is more cost effective.

There is a clear difference in what you get from digital cameras to what you can’t get with disposable, not only sheer number of images but better quality images and the ability to capture videos and share these digitally across social media channels, save them on cloud storage and have them playing as a slideshow on your TV. Plus you can always get them printed, or ever print them at home, to put in your wedding album as you wish.

If you require something different there is a range of camera hire packages available to suit your fancy.

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all that glitters. rose gold for a glamorous winter wedding at mere court hotel – maxine & alex

June 1st, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Rose Gold Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Lee Brown Photography (64)

Err, bride Maxine from today’s real wedding, can we be your friend please? Check out these photographs from her wedding to the lovely Alex and try to deny that this wedding belle was seriously good to her #bridesquad girls: not only are they wearing the most beautiful floral dressing gowns in their preparation pics, but she chose floor-length, rose gold sequinned gowns for them for the ceremony. I mean, I’d be literally skipping down the aisle!

Maxine herself wows effortlessly in her slinky lace number, which moved smoothly from the hotel ceremony to the couple’s gorgeous outdoor photoshoot and from day to night. And what a night it was from the look of things – love lights, laughter and leapfrogs. What all good weddings are made of!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Lee Brown Photography

A Rose Gold Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Lee Brown Photography (44)

maxine says: Alex proposed to me in Cairns. He had been in Australia with work for six months and I had gone to visit him. He popped the question just after we‘d been scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef. It was perfect!

A Rose Gold Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Lee Brown Photography (50)

We got married on 18th February 2017. We wanted to get married fairly quickly; a long engagement wasn’t for us. We knew we couldn’t rely on the weather and liked the idea of a winter wedding.

We got married at Mere Court Hotel, Cheshire, and had both the ceremony and reception there. I viewed it while Alex was in Australia. I knew as soon as I looked at I that it was what we both wanted.  It had a country house feel with lots of rooms for our guests to stay in, an intimate ceremony room with a lot of character and an amazing conservatory for the reception.

A Rose Gold Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Lee Brown Photography (82)

For our theme, we went with a winter glamour/Gatsby-type feel. I knew I didn’t want red and knew I wanted the bridesmaids in rose gold sequin maxi dresses and so the ideas just stemmed from there. I love how rose gold, bronze and ivory work together – the bridesmaids looked amazing in their dresses!

A Rose Gold Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Lee Brown Photography (107)

I bought my dress at a bridal shop owned by my friend Holly, Dream Dress Bridal. I‘d tried a few dresses on at wedding fairs for Holly and had an idea of the style I liked. I loved the one I eventually chose, particularly its detailed back. I knew I didn’t want a veil but a tiara; it went perfectly with the dress.

Alex wore a blue Signature suit from Next with a waistcoat and taupe tie. The colour looked amazing on Alex and thankfully went with the theme! The groomsmen also wore blue suits from Next.

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hold back the river: a serene styled yorkshire wedding shoot

May 31st, 2017 | Rachel Parry

Floral Styled Shoot (c) Jenny Maden Photography (28)

If hump day has hit you twice as hard following the long weekend, join us as we escape to a peaceful part of Yorkshire to indulge in this idyllic styled bridal shoot.

Headed up by photographer Jenny Maden, the shoot features the handiwork of a small collaborative of Yorkshire wedding suppliers who have combined their skills to produce a whimsical set of images with beautiful styling inspo for your big day.

Now, put that spreadsheet to one side and enjoy scanning through the pretty as Jenny explains how it all came together…

With images by Jenny Maden Photography

Floral Styled Shoot (c) Jenny Maden Photography (13)

jenny says: I absolutely love styled shoots as they provide an opportunity to get creative with all things pretty, and with fewer time constraints than an actual wedding day. It also allows me to work with some awesome suppliers across the industry, who love what they do – and do it brilliantly.

For this shoot, I once again teamed up with the lovely Angela of Floral Dance to provide the wonderful blooms and to help on the styling. The gorgeous bridalwear was provided by Amelia’s Bridal, while makeup was taken care of by Carolyn Christina Beauty and hair was styled by Marisa at Bijou, based in Horsforth.

Floral Styled Shoot (c) Jenny Maden Photography (43)

As with our prior styled shoots, we wanted to keep the look both pretty and rustic and incorporate the beauty of the great outdoors as much as possible. As such we chose a scene riverside location in Yorkshire to capture the shoot. It’s a real hidden gem, with such a great variety of backdrops and shooing angles, in a relatively small area. The bridge, the pebbles, the water and the foliage all added to the final collection of images.

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bronzed beauty. phase eight for a summer wedding in manchester – alex & pete

May 23rd, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth

Editor’s note: We were saddened to wake up this morning to the horrific news of the Manchester arena attack.  Our thoughts are with the victims and their families on this dreadful day.  We hope that our readers – no matter where you live – all draw your loved ones close for an extra kiss or hug this evening. Love always x 

A Summer Wedding in Manchester (c) ER Photography (24)

It’s always refreshing to see a bride and groom do things a little differently on their special day. And today’s couple, Alex and Pete, did exactly that.

Firstly, let’s talk about the dress. Forget your classic white, ivory, champagne or cream tones – instead, Alex plumped for a gorgeous bronze gown that perfectly complemented their navy and blush daytime colour scheme.

Gone too were the traditional favours and cake, instead our couple served up a scrumptious selection of desserts and a Mexican themed reception complete with a tasty buffet. But, as Alex reveals, there are a few nods to all things traditional, too – including a vintage convertible car which, we have to confess, has got us dreaming of driving off into the sunset with our veil blowing in the breeze…

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, ER Photography.

A Summer Wedding in Manchester (c) ER Photography (1)

alex says: We got engaged in December 2014 in Edinburgh. We went to a cosy whisky bar to escape the rain when Pete surprised me with a beautiful ring!

A Summer Wedding in Manchester (c) ER Photography (42)

We got married on 6th August. The 7th was the day we met and sits right between our birthdays so this had always been a special weekend for us.

We tied the knot at St Mary’s Church in Davyhulme, only a two-minute walk from our house. The church is beautiful and we wanted to keep the ceremony as close to home as we could.

A Summer Wedding in Manchester (c) ER Photography (32)

We chose a traditional ceremony with a Mexican fiesta theme for our reception. We didn’t want a typical ‘out of the box’ wedding and the theme suited us perfectly – our aim was for everyone to have a great time and celebrate with us. We were imagining a Mexican cantina on a hot summer’s night!

We had our reception at The Grill at 27 in Urmston. Martin and the team were more than accommodating and enthusiastic about letting us decorate the venue whichever way we wanted. The food was fab and the drink was flowing! We can’t thank them enough!

A Summer Wedding in Manchester (c) ER Photography (27)

We decided on navy, bronze and blush colours for the daytime part of the wedding, and then bright colours for the evening. We wanted a classic colour scheme that could translate to the evening. The metallic and navy sat great alongside our Mexican theme, too.

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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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