October 10th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
Though this week’s unseasonably warm weather may suggest otherwise, we are upon a turn of season which we thought signalled the perfect time for a discussion post on which time of the year is best suited to the style of wedding that you crave – spring/summer or autumn/winter.
Of course, we all know that the Great British weather can be massively unpredictable so no matter if your organisational skills could rival those of Monica Geller, some elements will remain out of your power meaning you never can guarantee that a July date will deliver wall to wall sunshine or indeed that a December day will bring with it an idyllic sprinkling of snow.
But there are further considerations beyond the weather that could have you favouring a spring/summer wedding over an autumn/winter celebration – or vice versa – as we discuss on the blog today.
Hello Sunshine: In most cases, the weather will be the number-one reason for couples choosing to get hitched in spring or summer, with hopes pinned on a cerulean sky and bright sunshine. While it’s certainly more likely you’ll experience decent weather if you choose such seasons, you could find you’re unprepared for a rogue thunderstorm, which is exactly what happened ten years ago at my July wedding. All geared up for a drinks reception on the spectacular terrace of Harewood House, our plans were dashed at the last minute by an uninvited guest, who sent friends and family running for cover under a torrential downpour. Our advice? Always have a plan B in place, including a few emergency umbrellas!
Celebrate Outside: Of course, with a greater guarantee of appealing weather in spring/summer, you could opt for an outdoor wedding. Following an increase in demand for ‘open-air I dos’ many venues have extended their wedding offering with spectacular outdoor structures and settings available for ceremonies and receptions. Whether you go woodland chic, vibrant festival or secret garden style, an outdoor celebration comes with laid-back vibes and limitless styling possibilities so let those creative juices run free!
Happy Holidays: A big tick for summer weddings is that wonderful six-week summer holiday in July and August. And so, if you or your other half are of a teaching profession, or you’re planning a week-day wedding and inviting lots of families, this is the ideal time to plan your big day ensuring more friends and family can make the date and that you have time to tie the knot and honeymoon too. Make sure you send out your save-the-date cards well in advance, however, so you don’t clash with guests’ pre-planned summer getaways.
Blooming Beautiful: A quick look at your own garden during the warmer months of the year demonstrates how many gorgeous and colourful flowers are available in spring and summer. Whether dainty and pale or big, blousy and bright there is so much choice for seasonal bouquets, buttonholes and arrangements during such months that will both look and smell divine.
Summer Nights: Warm, balmy and romantic, the longer nights give couples the opportunity to extend their celebrations outdoors with garden games, evening street food and even open-air musical entertainment. Better still, there’s also the opportunity for some killer couple portrait photographs during the ‘golden hour’, that wonderful time of day just before the sun begins to set when it turns skin golden and throws a magical light across the land.
Dare To Bare: With warmer temperatures on the cards, brides can embrace light, flowing bohemian style gowns as well as fashion-forward designs that reveal a flash of flesh, be it a backless ballgown, cut-out detailing, a plunging neckline or high leg split that takes your fancy.
Alfresco Feasting: More relaxed dining styles come into play in spring /summer with options for elegant afternoon teas, barbecued sharing platters, street food and picnics all welcome alternatives to a traditional three-course, sit-dwon meal.
Stress Less: The weather expectations of autumn/winter couples are reduced with most taking a ‘what will be will be approach’ to the conditions that could arise on their big day. This doesn’t mean they won’t get that bright but crisp autumnal day, or a lovely wintery scene come their ‘I dos’ but they are much less likely to let thoughts of the weather consume them in the wedding run-up.
Keep It Cosy: Those who opt to host their celebrations in the cooler months can fill their ceremony with wonderfully soft candlelight to create a romantic ambience and, with an indoor ceremony comes the ability to control lighting to best effect. Fairy lights can be strung from the rafters – you can even buy battery-operated Eddison-style bulbs for a really warm, vintage glow – and fires can be lit to create a cosy atmosphere and add comforting warmth.
July 20th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
For the second time this week we’re visiting one of our very favourite Yorkshire venues, Saltmarshe Hall, located near the lovely town of Howden. Did you notice that we are hosting another of our Brides Up North Bespoke Luxury Wedding Shows here on Sunday 7th October, 12pm till 3pm, free entry? Pop that one in your diaries!
As well as ours, the Hall holds a very special place in today’s featured couple’s hearts, as it was where the bride’s grandparents worked and first met. It’s a heart-warming connection that we could only dream of when searching for our perfect wedding venue.
Tying the knot earlier this spring, Faye and David opted for a classic grey colour palette that beautifully complemented the elegance of the Grade II listed venue. Throw in a DIY approach to some of the key decorations on the day – think calligraphy, pebbles and agate, and you’ve got one seriously pretty backdrop.
We just have to mention the bride’s beautiful Enzoani dress and bouquet of earl grey roses, menthe roses, avalanche roses, and foliage. Again, perfectly in keeping with the backdrop and a truly classic bridal look that we’re crushing on big style!
It’s now time to hand the blog over to our bride to share all the precious moments from the couple’s special day – prepare to be inspired!
With images by Clique Visuals.
faye says: We got engaged on Christmas Day 2016. On the morning, I was quite angry with David as he’d had a few too many drinks the night before and said he felt ill. I went off to eat my breakfast with my family and when I came back into the room he had dressed our baby girl in a vest that said, ‘Will you marry my Daddy’. It was the sweetest thing and he was obviously let off the hook, although he never did get down on one knee. I said yes, and it was the most perfect Christmas Day.
We tied the knot on April 28th 2018. We chose a spring date because our venue has the most beautiful gardens and we hoped to get some pictures with the flowers in full bloom.
We hosted both our ceremony and reception at Saltmarshe Hall, East Yorkshire. We fell in love with the Hall the moment we saw it, as the recent renovations are both luxurious and elegant. It was important to us to have exclusive use of the venue, which created such an intimate and comfortable feeling for our guests on the day. It is also a very dear place to my family as my great grandma and granddad both met and worked at the Hall as a maid and grounds man. We would not hesitate to recommend this venue to anyone, our wedding planner Kate was so lovely and attentive, she made our day extra special.
Choosing a theme for the wedding was something which caused me some stress during the planning phase. Our vision for the day was for our decor and styling to complement the beautiful decor and surroundings at the venue. I was keen for the wedding to be romantic and timelessly elegant.
The colour palette for our wedding was shades of grey. The delicate tones of lilac, blue and blush really worked especially on the slightly overcast spring day. I wore the Juri gown by Enzoani purchased at The Bridal Lounge in Stockport. The dress was probably the exact opposite of what I had in mind that I would like, but my sister insisted I try it – and she was right. We knew it was the one instantly.
David wore a Prince of Wales morning jacket and navy waistcoat and pants from Best Man Suit Hire in Stockport. The groomsmen, meanwhile, wore navy morning suits, also from Best Man Suit Hire.
July 9th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
Getting your Monday off to the most gorgeous of starts, we’re sharing the dreamy big day of newlyweds Nicola and Richard, which took place at stunning North West venue, Ashfield House.
What initially captured our attention (and will most probably steal yours too!) is Nicola’s amazing choice of dress – an halterneck collard Jesús Peiró creation with a daring yet elegant slit at the front and beautiful bow at the waist. It’s a wow-gown for sure and one that Nicola absolutely rocks!
Second to ignite our starry eyes are the blooms – an abundance of striking but soft gypsophila cloud type arrangements; from the dainty bouquets to giant orb decorations studded with blush roses. So simple, so lush!
All in all, this glorious wedding has our swoon-metre set at high throughout with the detailing and attire coming together perfectly for a stylish and sophisticated affair!
With images by Bobtale Photography.
nicola says: We got engaged on my birthday, 9th September, in 2016. Richard was meant to propose in a restaurant during my birthday meal; however, he lost his nerve and then dropped to one knee as soon as we walked through the door at home! Our two beautiful girls, Maisie (seven) and Florence (four), were also there.
We got married on 5th April 2018. We wanted a spring wedding and it fitted with the school holidays as I’m a teacher. We also wanted to have a minimoon in April and then a bigger honeymoon in the summer!
We held both our ceremony and reception at Ashfield House, Wigan. We live local to the venue and we often take the children to play in the grounds/park attached. The venue has won numerous awards recently, including best wedding venue (town and city) at the UK Wedding Industry Awards. We would definitely recommend it to other couples. The wedding planner, Josh, was fab. He oversaw everything so that Richard and I could just enjoy the day. The venue is beautiful, and all the guests commented on the décor, food and atmosphere.
We didn’t have a theme as such; rather, we wanted to keep the day very simple, classic and elegant. However, we did want to give it a modern twist. The colours we chose were navy blue, white and a very pale blush pink, as Richard really wanted a navy blue suit, so we tried to fit the rest of the colour scheme to that. I wanted simple, white gypsophila flowers from the moment we started to plan and, to tie the blue and white together, we then introduced pale blush pink.
My dress was by Jesús Peiró from Lovebird Brides in Ilkley. I saw the designer featured at a Brides Up North wedding show and I loved the style – very clean lines and simple but dramatic at the same time. I then looked at all the dresses available from the designer and fell in love with it! I only tried that dress and one other on – I knew straight away this was the dress. I love the modern look and clean, simple lines; however, I also feel that it won’t date as it is a classic shape.
I had my makeup done by a fantastic girl, Makeup by Rebecca G based in Widnes. She came to the venue and worked all morning applying makeup to me, my bridesmaids and my mum. All our hair was done by Hair by Vision, based in Wigan.
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.
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