February 6th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
This morning on the blog we’re escaping to an award-winning hotel and spa set in 1,400 acres of spectacular countryside. Say hello to the beautiful Coniston Hotel in the Yorkshire Dales – the serene backdrop to Sarah and Sam’s big day last April.
Finding a venue that could accommodate all of their family and friends was a top priority for the couple, and The Coniston ticked this requirement rather nicely – and then some! Guests could really make a weekend of it, enjoying activities like clay pigeon shooting, or a more blissful experience in the spa.
Sarah and Sam’s wedding was all about the countryside feels, with plenty of natural tones, hessian and tweed. Our personal highlight has to be the couple’s jaunt outdoors on the rowing boat – true romance!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Laura Calderwood Photography.
sarah says: We got engaged on 11th September 2016. Samuel went to elaborate measures for the perfect proposal. About six months before, he began to drop hints about wanting a surprise birthday party. He then spoke to his mum and asked her to convince me that we should throw him a surprise party for his 28th birthday as he would never expect it. I agreed and believed that his mother and I were planning him the party. Little did I know, Samuel planned the whole thing, including choosing the venue, and then made his mum pass it off as her idea and suggestions. Having a busy job as a teacher meant that I was none the wiser and too busy to question anything. Lots of our friends and family were gathered in the hall on the eve on our engagement, some knew what was coming, others had no idea. I gathered everybody around the door ready to shout surprise. When I opened the door, Samuel was down on one knee! I had absolutely no idea and was blown away. After saying yes, we partied the evening away with the people we love.
We got married on 8th April 2017. Being a teacher meant that our dates were restricted to the school holidays and as a close friend was getting married in the summer holidays, we chose April. We couldn’t have been happier with the weather; blazing sunshine and 17 degrees.
We tied the knot at St Peter’s Church, Coniston Cold, Skipton, and had the wedding breakfast and reception at The Coniston Hotel. When we started to plan, we sat down and discussed our values for the big day. We wanted somewhere that was going to accommodate all our family and friends and somewhere that would listen to us and work with us to be flexible. The Coniston were just that. They truly are an amazing wedding venue. Nothing was too much and our coordinator Sharon made sure our day was absolutely perfect. Our very good friend, Luke, is a rector so he performed the ceremony for us which really made it personal and all about us. He is amazing.
There was no particular theme – we liked cosy, countryside style and knew we wanted somewhere where all our family and friends could come together and spend the weekend, with clay pigeon shooting and the spa.
We wanted a neutral colour scheme and I was a particular fan of hessian and lace. I had seen lots of inspiration on Pinterest and wedding websites and was always drawn to this combination.
I knew from the start that I wanted a dress that incorporated lace and a train. I went to a few wedding fairs with my mum, grandma, sister and bridesmaids, and tried on quite a few dresses. I was starting to get frustrated because I liked certain parts of them but always wanted to change something. We watched the catwalk at one wedding fair and my mum saw a dress that she thought would look nice on me, so we went to try it on. It was from Berketex Bride. It was the first dress I’d tried on where I didn’t want to change anything. I still didn’t know it was the one until afterwards. Every dress I looked at (on the hangers) I kept comparing to this one, so I tried it on again and knew it was right. I did have a slight panic that I’d made the wrong choice afterwards, but once I tried it on in my size at my first fitting I knew I hadn’t.
November 9th, 2017 | Aislinn Thompson
There’s something very romantic about the first glimpse of Yorkshire wedding venue Wood Hall Hotel, as you round the bend and dip down into the valley – tucked into a sweeping, gloriously green countryside vista, it’s no surprise Briony and Adam chose this spectacular setting for their big day.
After garnering lots of inspiration from our very own Brides Up North blog, Briony pulled together a very pretty, pastel-hued wedding day with plenty of sweet little details that brought a personal touch to the day. We love the fact that Briony incorporated her late grandmother’s lace into her bouquet and table decorations – a divine detail that meant she carried her nan with her all day.
From the matching bridesmaids’ dressing gowns in the morning, to the wishes jar for guests to share their personal messages, to the pretty little boxes containing mini eggs for each guest as a nod to the Easter weekend, Briony and Adam took time to get the details right. Briony made all the wedding signs herself by writing in white pen on the glass of white photo frames, and the couple chose laser-cut place name signs that each guest could take home with them. Right through to the pop of evening sunshine that facilitated some lovely photographs and gave the couple a few minutes to soak up the atmosphere together, Briony and Adam enjoyed a very pretty, personalised day.
With images by Arabella Smith.
briony says: We got engaged on 14th August 2014. I was making tea when Adam called me into the front room. Jack, our little boy, was sitting on the floor holding a ring box and then Adam got down on one knee. I was completely shocked! I had no idea he was planning to propose. Obviously, the tea ended up in the fridge and we went out to celebrate!
We wanted a spring wedding and Easter bank holiday seemed perfect, with having the Friday and Monday off work, so we chose 15th April 2017 – Easter Saturday. It meant we had more time to prepare and then celebrate afterwards!
Wood Hall Hotel and Spa was the first venue we went to look at: I fell in love with it as soon as we drove down the driveway. Nothing else compared: it was perfect. The coordinator, Rachel, was fantastic in the run up and Nathan and all of the team on the day were brilliant. It’s no wonder they’ve just won Best Large Venue of the Year (Yorkshire) in the North of England Wedding Awards.
I didn’t really choose a theme for our wedding; I just wanted everything to look pretty and romantic. A mixture of lace, white, pastel colours, candles and fairy lights just about sums it up. For something not so traditional, we used two VW campervans as our wedding cars, which we hired from The Yorkshire Wedding Car Company. They were a big hit with the guests. I wanted to try and have some personal touches for the day, so I hand-wrote all the calligraphy signs and the seating plan.
With it being a spring wedding, I wanted pastel colours. My wedding dress was by Mori Lee and had a slight blush colour to it. I bought it from The Abbey Wedding Warehouse, in Kirkstall, Leeds. I felt like a princess in it. It was actually the second dress I bought but I’m so glad I changed my mind, as I panic-bought my first dress. To follow the colour scheme, my six bridesmaids were in multiway dresses from Debenhams: two in pale pink, two in pale blue and two in pale grey. I had two flower girls in pale pink dresses, also from Debenhams. Adam wore a traditional grey morning suit and he and our two little boys wore an ivory waistcoat with an ivory rouche. We hired the suits from Slaters in Leeds. The groomsmen wore grey morning suits, ivory waistcoats and a pale pink rouche.
Lauren Rippin did my makeup and made a fantastic job. Lisa Jobson and Danae Miller from Gray’s Salon did all the hair in the morning. Lisa has done my hair for a very long time and is a close friend of mine. The only other person I would trust to do my bridesmaids’ hair is Danae. We have all been friends for a long time and I wouldn’t have had anyone else there with me on the morning. I knew they would make everyone look incredible – and they did!
July 18th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
Today on Brides Up North, we’re reminiscing with newlyweds Kate and Danny, who tied the knot earlier this spring at the stunning Colshaw Hall in Cheshire – a private 300-acre estate.
With a penchant for all things Easter, the couple treated their guests to an egg-stra (sorry, had to be done!) spectacular day filled with chocolate eggs, cute bunnies and beautiful daffodils. Their dog Maddie even had a special role to play.
With not just two, three or even four but six bridesmaids and a flower girl – all coordinated in rainbow-bright pastel shades – and the bride herself dressed in an elegant vintage style gown, get ready for a cute springtime wedding.
With images by Ragdoll Photography
kate says: We got engaged on 13th December 2015, at the top of the big hill on Barlaston Downs Banks when taking our little dog Maddie on a Sunday walk. It was also our seven-year anniversary!
Our wedding took place on 12th April 2017 – we picked this date because we wanted a springtime, Easter wedding. We got married at Colshaw Hall in Knutsford, Cheshire – we fell in love with the venue from day one. It has amazing grounds and both the ceremony room and reception room were beautiful boasting natural colours. The accommodation was amazing too – 36 guests from our close family and the bridal party stayed there the night before as well as on the big day itself.
We picked our theme based on my love for Easter. As a little girl, it was always an exciting time in my house, with all the bunnies, chicks and beautiful colours. My family would always get together at this time too.
We chose a pastel palette for our colour scheme, consisting of mint, purple, lemon and lilac – all of my favourite colours! They worked perfectly with our Easter theme.
I brought my dress from Bridal Couture By Josephine in Cheadle. After trying on about 50 dresses, I decided A-line was my kind of dress and the most flattering style. I love lace, so really wanted this fabric, as well as sleeves to cover my arms. When I tried the dress on, it was just perfect!
Danny wore a navy blue slim-fit suit, with a grey and blue check waistcoat with brown shoes, purchased from Maria Modes in Macclesfield. The groomsmen wore matching navy suits with ties made from the same material as the bridesmaid dresses.
Speaking of which – I had seven bridesmaids and one flower girl – two wore lilac, with two in lemon, two in mint and another in pink. The dresses were bought from DIY Dress which is such an amazing website. A special mention should also go to dressmaker Victoria Anthony who altered my bridesmaids’ dresses and made all the ties.
May 29th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
If, like me, you’ve got a sweet tooth, this real wedding is going to have you reaching for the ‘treat tin’ as its peppered with delicious treats in a nod to the Easter season.
From Lindt bunny favours and an epic chocolatey wedding cake to a full-scale egg hunt, bride and groom Christine and Christopher certainly spoilt their guests.
And there are more delectable details to feast your eyes on too – cue a beautifully embellished wedding gown, pretty mint colour scheme and pet dog Sybil acting as flower girl. We love!
With images by Stevie Jay Photography
christine says: We got engaged on 27th March 2016, Easter Sunday. Chris hid an engagement ring inside a chocolate Easter egg and hid it in the woods in Sutton Park in Sutton-on-the-Forest, near York, where we live. We took Sybil our dog out for a walk and Chris asked me to find an egg, he then got down on one knee and proposed. Chocolate and a ring, what more could a woman want!?
We got married on 15th April 2017. We chose the date because it was Easter Saturday and a year from when we got engaged. We both love chocolate so had to choose Easter.
Our chosen venue was Grays Court Hotel in York, where we had both our ceremony and reception. We saw the venue every time we walked along the York city walls and fell in love with it.
Our theme was Easter related and we had an Easter egg hunt for the children (and adults!) and lots of chocolate eggs for guests to help themselves to.
We chose a soft mint colour scheme for bridesmaid dresses, ties and a few other bits just because it was a nice spring colour.
I chose a Morilee by Madeleine Gardner dress in ivory lace with an embellished back. I bought the dress from the Northallerton Outlet wedding shop and had it expertly altered by Thimbelina in York. I fell in love with dress after seeing it on another bride and had to wait with fingers crossed that she would choose another dress so I could have it!
Mine and my bridesmaids’ hair was styled by Escape Hair in Strensall. I’d would recommend them for bridal hair, we got so many compliments on how lovely our hair looked.
March 27th, 2017 | Julia Braime
After the clock change at the weekend, we’ve officially sprung into spring, meaning lighter nights, warmer weather and the approach to peak wedding season are all on the way!
To mark the arrival of the new season, we’re bringing a glorious helping of inspiration to those of you planning springtime weddings, courtesy of our fabulous Sponsor, award winning hospitality and event management company Dine.
Established in 1998, Yorkshire-based Dine caters for more 200 weddings a year as well as offering exclusive private dining. Through its stunning portfolio of venues, the team provide event services for organisations ranging from English Heritage and the National Trust to the owners of some of the UK’s most notable private houses, providing a varied choice of beautiful big day settings.
For this afternoon’s post, we’re welcoming Dine’s managing director, Matt Jones, to the blog to share some of his helpful pointers on planning a wedding in the season of new beginnings…
Matt says: With Yorkshire offering some of the finest countryside in Britain, make the most of the warmer, longer days by choosing a spectacular setting for your big day. Dine boasts an impressive portfolio of stunning venues to suit every taste – whether you favour a magnificent deer park, picturesque walled gardens, or breath-taking views over historical ruins.
While beautiful indoor locations can be appealing for a spring wedding owing to the chance of April Showers, marquees can provide a fantastic compromise. Although popular for the quintessentially British summer wedding, with the right planning, flooring and heating, a reception under canvas can be a perfect venue whatever the time of year. You can even choose a marquee with sides that can be removed or with windows to enable you to make the most of the weather and the view.
Many of Dine’s stunning venues provide fantastic lakeside settings with outstanding outlooks across Yorkshire’s breath-taking countryside. Gothic-style Carlton Towers and Ripley Castle’s Lakeside settings provide panoramic views – across an island which is home to majestic swans and a glorious, rolling deer park respectively. Alternatively, Bolton Abbey nestled in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales, provides a secluded and private setting with exclusive access to the River Wharfe and views of the Augustinian Priory. Belvoir Castle, the ancestral home of the Dukes of Rutland offers a magnificent setting for a marquee wedding while Dalton Hall’s walled garden is quintessentially English and perfect for a more formal spring theme.
Marquees make a spectacular backdrop to wedding celebrations, and offer the ultimate in flexibility, even allowing you the ultimate luxury of getting married at home. Such a wedding can create a relaxed and intimate atmosphere, while the individual location enables couples to buck the trend of a traditional spring wedding and create their own traditions in their unique family setting.
With marquees able to accommodate as many or as few guests as you choose, a huge garden is not necessary. Marquees are also available in an array of sizes and styles, from tipis and vintage army tents, to sailcloth and traditional, enabling you to match a style to your spring wedding theme.
No matter the season, it’s always a fantastic idea for your wedding breakfast to reflect the seasonality of your day, in terms of both the dishes and presentation. With 18 years’ experience as a hospitality and catering specialist, Dine can provide innovation and skill when creating food for your spring wedding. Experienced and imaginative event managers and chefs, combined with seasonal ingredients always promise to deliver your perfect spring menu.
Edible flowers available in spring on both savoury and sweet courses are an innovative and impressive use of unique ingredients to make your dishes look gorgeous. Nasturtiums, French Marigolds and Cornflowers all make colourful additions to your dishes and provide a seasonal touch. Yet if you’d prefer greenery to the bright colours of seasonal flowers, adding fresh herbs to dishes, especially desserts for a unique touch is another great way to add spring colour to your food. Chocolate and rosemary are a match made in heaven so why not add dark chocolate and rosemary tart with a fennel ice-cream and orange sherbet to your wedding breakfast for bright colours and fresh flavours.
Incorporating seasonal vegetables such as asparagus, sugar snap peas, baby carrots and new potatoes provides fresh flavours and crunchy textures. Dine can provide innovative starters, main courses and desserts which combine spectacular presentation and fantastic flavours.
From asparagus velouté with a soft poached quail’s egg and crème fraîche, to fillet of halibut marinated in lemon confit and thyme with vegetables Provençale, gazpacho dressing and buttered anya new potatoes, Dine can create dishes which will remind your guests of spring no matter your venue or the weather.
Menu tasting well ahead of your big day is vital to ensure seasonality and the combination of your chosen ingredients are a perfect match. This also allows you to discuss the menu with your Dine event manager and any adjustments you would like to make.
Wherever you choose to get married, a spring wedding should reflect on the rejuvenation and expectation of the season with soft hues and delicate textures. Pastel pink, lavender and green can be incorporated through dresses, suits, bouquets and food to bring the season inside.
Building a Pinterest ‘mood board’ will help you focus on the spring styles you like, and look carefully at brochures and social media to see what has been done previously at your wedding venue. Working with your venue, whether it be a marquee which provides a blank canvas for you to dress. or somewhere pre-prepared, is important to see how your theme can be incorporated and what might not be as easy to achieve.
According to the Pantone Colour Institute, the colour of 2017 is ‘greenery’ and this certainly reflects the seasonality of spring with images of new growth and new life.
With simple greenery bouquets also becoming increasingly popular, this can be a great backdrop to other colour choices for decorations and favours. The contrast between bright vivid green and delicate pastel colours will create a fresh and vibrant palette, evoking sensations of spring even if the weather isn’t as glorious as you would like, or you are having an indoor wedding.
November 29th, 2016 | Alexis Forsyth
Today, we bring you Liz and Jon’s special day, set in the beautiful National Trust village of Styal in Cheshire.
Pretty paper lanterns, candles and fairy lights create a charming backdrop to their nuptials, but for us, it’s the couple’s Great Wedding Bake Off that steals the show – with so much cake to tuck in to, what’s not to like?
As a lovely touch, Liz even enlisted the help of her Year One class and the couple made a donation to two charities close to their hearts.
So, sit back and relax as Liz shares all the dreamy highlights.
With images by Jonny Draper Photography
liz says: We got engaged in April 2015, in New York. I had wanted to find an Alice in Wonderland statue in Central Park that I had heard about and when we got there Jon insisted that I sit on one of the toadstools for a photo. As I turned around to refuse him, he was down on one knee! I was blown away – it was all caught on camera too as Jon had arranged for a photographer to capture the moment!
We got married on 25th March 2016. It was Good Friday and the perfect opportunity for us and our guests to enjoy a lovely long Bank Holiday weekend. As a teacher, I wanted to get married close to a holiday so we could have a honeymoon straight after the wedding.
We tied the knot at Styal Lodge in Cheshire; it was the only venue we viewed. As soon as we arrived we knew it was the place for us, it was perfect – relaxed, spacious but still intimate.
Our invitations and table names featured a New York skyline but apart from that we kept everything quite simple with a relaxed but elegant feel, complete with lots of beautiful fairy lights everywhere.
Our colour scheme leaned towards white, green and grey, from the bridesmaids’ dresses to the flowers.
My dress was from Felicity Cooper Bridal in Knutsford. I knew it was the dress for me as soon as I saw it; something drew me to the dress even though it was everything I hadn’t set out to have! I loved the dress as soon as I put on; it felt like ‘me’ and was light and comfortable, too. Fiona, who designed my dress, couldn’t have been more wonderful and encouraged me to have the dress exactly as I wanted.
Jon wore a grey suit from Next and a tie from Reiss. My very talented mum made the four bridesmaid dresses, and for the best men and groomsmen we hired navy suits from L&J Formal Hire near Middlewich. Colin, who owns the company, couldn’t have been more friendly, helpful and accommodating.
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