May 9th, 2018 | Julia Braime
Christmas is such a lovely time for a wedding – the world is wearing its finery, from the streets dripping with twinkly fairy lights to the gigantic smiles on the faces of people in the mood to celebrate. You’re onto a winner for a fun celebration before you even start!
Today’s real wedding couple Rachel and Charles wed among the mistletoe at the impressive Courthouse in Knutsford, Cheshire, with its dramatically high ceilings and fabulous character.
Rachel wore a stunning Maggie Sottero creation with a gold sequined top and frothy skirt – just perfect for a festive celebration and simply beautiful against a backdrop of giant, sparkling Christmas trees. We love the fact that Rachel and Charles’s one-year-old daughter wore a dress that echoed the style of her mother’s – adorable. With entertainment to suit all ages – including a mini Casino and a caricaturist – and little Christmas trees adorning every table, Rachel and Charles went all out to ensure their guests had a fun-filled, festive day.
With images by Kate McCarthy Photography.
rachel says: We got engaged on holiday in Dubai. I asked Charles to get our daughter ready for the pool while I got my sun cream on; when I got out of the bathroom, our baby daughter was in a vest and written on the vest was “Mummy, will you marry daddy?” It was perfect!
Our wedding date was Saturday 23rd December 2017. We really wanted it to be a Saturday as most people are free and with it being Christmas time we thought it would be perfect to get all our family and friends together for a festive celebration too! We created a Christmassy look for the reception with Christmas tree centrepieces and a few dancing Santa hats for the kids.
We got married at the fabulous Courthouse in Knutsford. It’s such a beautiful building with a lot of character. It’s a great size for a wedding and we had the reception and ceremony in the same place for convenience, so we didn’t have to travel to venues as some of our guests had already travelled far to get to us. We couldn’t have asked for a better venue. The team are fantastic and pulled out all the stops for us. The day ran like clockwork due to Kate the coordinator and the Ice Entertainment team. Thanks to them all, we made the most amazing memories.
I wore a dress by Maggie Sottero, which I bought from Bliss Bridal in Bolton. It was my friend who showed me a picture of the dress and I instantly fell in love with it. It was completely different to any dress I had seen before and the gold sequined top was perfect for a Christmas wedding! My bridesmaids wore custom-made dresses from the fabulous Rixo.
Charles and his groomsmen wore suits from Marks & Spencer. Charles had quite a few groomsmen who all live in different places, so Marks was easily accessible to them all to get the suit that fitted them well. They also came in slim fit, tailored and regular fit, so we knew they would look good on all of them.
May 2nd, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
The beautiful backdrop to today’s fabulously pretty real wedding is stunning North Yorkshire venue Middleton Lodge, a beautiful Georgian estate in Richmond that we will be showing off in all its glory during our Luxury Wedding Fair there on Sunday 20th May, open 12 noon to 3pm, FREE ENTRY. As well as being able to view the gorgeous Main House and garden marquee, we will also be showcasing the gorgeous new Fig House set within a walled kitchen garden. Full details and pre-registration can be found here
Now on with the nuptials. Hiring the Middleton estate for the full weekend, India and Richard viewed the country retreat just the once and that was all it took, as they instantly fell in love with the idyllic venue and didn’t even need to look elsewhere.
Going for a timeless look for their big day, the couple settled on a classic navy and white colour scheme, offset by dreamy blooms of roses, lilies, hydrangeas and blue thistle. Throw in some ambient tea lights and glowing lanterns and you’ll start to picture their exquisitely elegant setting. We’ll hand the blog over to India now though, to talk us through all the precious highlights…
With images by Daz Mack.
india says: We got engaged at Sky Gardens in London after a meal at the top of the building. We were walking around the gardens when Richard said “I’ve brought you up here for a reason” and that’s when he pulled out the box! I didn’t believe him at first and laughed because he is such a joker and is always pulling my leg! It was only until he opened the box and actually put the ring on my finger that I knew he was being serious!
We tied the knot on 27th January 2018. We chose this date because after Christmas there is always such an anti-climax. We wanted a date to always look forward to after the Christmas madness and now we have that!
We got married at Middleton Lodge in Richmond. We chose this venue because everything about it was perfect; a beautiful Georgian private estate with amazing grounds – it ticked all the boxes! We actually only ever looked at this one venue and booked it straight away because we knew it was perfect for us.
We didn’t have any particular theme, just a colour scheme of navy and white as we believed this combination was so timeless and classic, and it was different from the boho pinks and whites that you see more of these days.
I chose a Nurit Hen couture dress – I have always wanted a dress by this designer. The gowns are absolutely stunning, and a bride should always feel beautiful on her wedding day! My makeup artist was The Costa Chic.
Richard wore a beautiful blue suit with a gold tie from Affleck and Moffat in Darlington.
My bridesmaids wore navy dresses from ASOS, and the groomsmen wore suits from Affleck and Moffat.
On the day of the wedding we travelled by a vintage Riley car provided by Merlin Wedding Cars.
April 30th, 2018 | Laura McDonagh
Jane and Sam’s sumptuous winter wedding has us all aquiver here at Brides Up North HQ. With more than a touch of decadent luxury – in Jane’s words, they had “candles, roses, crystals, pearls and diamonds… and flowers everywhere!” – these photographs are truly a feast for the eyes.
And a very special mention goes to Sam, who raised the bar for all husbands-to-be by organising a surprise champagne breakfast for Jane and her best girls. Not only that, but he also arranged for personalised present boxes containing pjs, slippers, dressing gowns and perfume to be delivered to their room. Talk about #mangoals!
This one is all about the dazzle, we think you’ll agree.
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Lee Brown Photography.
jane says: We got engaged in London on the 30th October 2016. The trip was a total surprise: I woke up to a packed suitcase and was presented with some train tickets and an outfit to wear for the day. After a first class train ride, we went to Buckingham Palace and walked through the gardens. Sam led me under a huge, ancient oak tree, then got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. It was a total shock – but I immediately said yes! We then went back to our hotel, the Mondrian on Southbank, where there was a bottle of champagne waiting and the bed had been decorated with a large heart-shaped collage of photos from our five years together. To top the day off, Sam revealed he’d named a star after us and had booked a table at The Savoy that evening where we enjoyed an amazing meal and cocktails. We had a magical few days and I felt like the luckiest woman in the world!
Our wedding date was 9th December 2017 – we wanted something different to all the traditional summer weddings.
For our venue, we chose the magnificent Mottram Hall in Macclesfield, Cheshire. Sam had previously booked a surprise weekend stay there after we’d seen it on an episode of The Real Housewives of Cheshire. We got a really good vibe from the venue and staff and were totally blown away by their Christmas trees! Funnily enough, the trees were decorated by a company called Lasting Memories who ended up dressing Mottram Hall for our the day. The whole place was utterly amazing and we thought even at that early stage that it would be the perfect place for us to get married.
Our wedding theme was timeless, romantic chic. We went with soft colours along with lots of candles, roses, crystals, pearls and diamonds. We had fabulous rose arches and drapes from the ceiling to keep things elegant and neutral. Alison at Lasting Memories did an incredible job, creating an absolute masterpiece of a setting for us with flowers everywhere!
I wore a beautiful beaded Jasmine Couture gown with ruffled skirt from Elegance Bridal. I added a fur capelet to keep me warm in the snow and a birdcage veil from Richard Designs. I attached a back necklace to my dress, also from Elegance Bridal, to add a little extra sparkle and another dimension to my dress; everyone commented on how beautiful it was! I also wore crystal drop earrings with a matching choker and bracelet made by Rosie Wilson. I’d kept my dress a secret from everyone and did a grand reveal to my friends and family on the wedding morning; it was such a special moment.
My hair and makeup was my favourite accessory, though; I couldn’t have asked for a more professional, flawless finish. My makeup artist was Amy Yeomans and my hair stylist was Zoe from Trim Hairdressing.
March 26th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
We may currently be praying for even the tiniest glimpse of spring, but today on the blog we have some breathtakingly beautiful wintery wedding inspiration, perfect for those of you planning a seasonal celebration.
The festivities were in full swing for today’s couple, Suzanne and Bevan, who invited Christmas into their wedding and threw a jewel-coloured, lively celebration that incorporated guest participation, with each guest asked to sing a line from The 12 Days of Christmas during the wedding breakfast.
Suzanne’s desire for foliage and no flowers to keep the decorations seasonal shows how incredible a bouquet can look without the traditional floral additions. Another show-stopper is the cake – an exquisite naked confection studded with foliage and feathers, which perfectly complements the Tudor theme of the wedding breakfast. With an artfully dressed chandelier presiding over long tables in the great hall, Suzanne’s love of this bygone period is evident in the evocative yet simple styling. If this was history coursework, we’d give her an A-star!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Chelsea Shoesmith Photography.
suzanne says: Bevan and I met in Singapore on Tinder, despite both living around the corner from each other in London! One of the first places we headed to as a couple when we were back visiting the UK was Grasmere, where we walked up the Lion and the Lamb. So, when Bevan decided he wanted to propose, he took me back to Grasmere and up to the top of the Lion and the Lamb, where he suggested we take a break. He then pulled from his rucksack what appeared to be a Christmas present (Bevan proposed on 21st December 2016). I opened the gift and it was a book entitled ‘Our Adventures’. Each page was a different picture of our life together so far. When I reached the final page, there was a picture of a jewellery shop with the caption, “I want to ask you to begin another adventure with me” and the next page said, “Will you marry me?” Bevan got down on one knee with a vintage engagement ring – a 1930s blue sapphire with two diamonds either side.
We got married on 22nd December 2017, at Samlesbury Hall in Lancashire. As we live overseas, we tried to pick a date when our overseas friends would also be back in the UK. We liked the idea of making the day a big Christmas party. The venue is in my home town of Preston and I love history, especially the Tudor period, so a Tudor house seemed ideal. The ceremony was in the old chapel, the drinks reception in the antechamber and the wedding breakfast in the great hall. Some of our guests stayed overnight in the shepherd’s huts, which are located in the grounds of Samlesbury Hall. Angela, who runs the venue, is amazing at making your day run smoothly and the venue is bursting with character.
The wedding was not a religious ceremony. However, the ceremony itself was very personal to us. We used Cate Baines at The Ceremony Company and she was fantastic. She really set the scene with a flamboyant explanation of how we met.
In terms of a theme, I was keen to have a vintage feel to my dress because of my engagement ring but we didn’t really have a specific theme, other than telling everybody it was first and foremost a Christmas party.
For the colour scheme, I went with champagne (because of my dress having that vintage look), dark green, dark red and dark blue. I wanted to keep the colours simple and in tune with Christmas.
My dress was designed for me by an Irish designer based in Singapore called Elizabeth Gregory Couture. It was great working with Elizabeth. She designed my dress around my engagement ring and she also designed and made my fake fur stole, which I finished off with a vintage brooch that belonged to Bevan’s great grandmother. I added a back necklace by Tilly Thomas Lux and matching hairpins. I’d like to give a shout out to Chloe and Sarah for the fantastic hair and makeup – two lovely working mummies!
Bevan wore a suit, also designed and made by Elizabeth. Her suit brand is called Elizabeth Grace. Bevan wore navy with a beautiful grey waistcoat sporting bright red lining.
February 12th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
There’s a larger-than-life, fairy-tale quality to today’s winter wedding styled shoot, which takes place at Wood Lane Countryside Centre, a Grade II listed former farm set on the edge of countryside in north-west Sheffield.
With an owl, a ‘wolf’ and plenty of furry throws and candlelight, a lot of thought has gone into the styling of this enchanting outdoor shoot, organised by skilful Brides Up North Sponsor, Samantha Coventry, the owner and talent behind award-winning Fantail Designer Florist.
Having recently reached the final of The Wedding Industry Awards, Samantha’s fabulous creations turn heads and she knows just how to push those floral design and colour boundaries to produce something truly spectacular – as documented to this spell-bounding shoot.
So, let’s hand over to our good friend Samantha and photographer Stu, to explain how the mystical vision came together…
With images by Stu Ganderton Photography.
samantha says: Wood Lane Countryside Centre (WLCC) approached us to create a winter shoot that could inspire brides and grooms to explore the grounds and see the potential of what it has to offer. Being their recommended supplier for flowers, I relished the opportunity to bring in a handpicked selection of high-quality suppliers to create a shoot like no other and something of which to be really proud.
We wanted to shoot everything outside and in the grounds. The venue has a quaint back garden that’s often overlooked. David Ambler from WLCC had only one request: “to make it inspiring”.
Some people might say that it was a massive risk to organise a shoot completely outside in the middle of winter – and they’d be right – but it was a risk worth taking. The shoot started mid-morning, with clear blue skies and a crisp coating of frost on the grass. I arrived onsite with Wild Wedding Days and worked to create the backdrop for the shoot. Wild Wedding Days took care of all outdoor lighting and commercial props, including the drums and tables.
The dress was provided by Something Special Bridal, a fitted Chantilly lace gown called Grace from their Hollywood Chic 2017 Collection. True to its name, the dress exudes grace and has a modern twist of a top tulle and lace overskirt and corded lace hem, which makes for the amazing waist cape detail.
Our make-up artist Ria Amelia MUA arrived with Ellie, our real-life bride, and set to work with a brief from the photographer, Stu Ganderton, of ‘smoky, hard but natural’.
For hair, we wanted a powerful ‘warrior’ feel but still something that could be emulated by every-day brides. I created a hair piece that could be incorporated into the design. Anna Hibberd from HQ Works Sheffield created a stunning style with tight French plaits to one side and a backcombed fringe to give height and depth.
February 9th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
We may be desperately trying to shake off the current cold season and focus on the brighter months ahead, but we’re finishing the week with a truly delectable dose of winter wedding inspiration.
Those of you planning your wedding for such time of year are certainly going to want to have your Pinning-fingers at the ready, as this shoot epitomises an opulent winter wedding at its finest, complete with a warming palette of golds and berry reds, plus plenty of crystal and jewel detailing.
Engineered by a talented group of Yorkshire suppliers, the shoot, captured late last year, took some of its inspiration from festive season and shows how utterly gorgeous an alternative Christmas wedding can be – thankfully there’s not a single candy cane in sight!
Here to tell us more is the award-winning Betty Timbo of Bespoke Vintage Castle, who made the beautiful accessories featured in the shoot – including a rather gorgeous clutch bag that us magpies at Brides Up North just love!
With images by Jane Beadnell Photography.
betty says: The shoot was inspired by all things seasonal and wonderful, full of rich vibrancy, opulent flowers and exciting glittery elements. A jubilant collection of colours, moods and textures were evoked by the Christmas spirit with the shoot taking place late last year. We were also keen to showcase the very best Yorkshire talent and what a wedding could be like when this theme comes together.
The location – The Orangery at Settrington – was perfectly chosen by photographer Jane Beadnell, who wanted to capture a place with bold structure, clean colours and a decadent finish. We loved the venue’s large windows that drew in the cooling winter sun, stunning pillars that shaped the room and the warming glow of the muted colour palette. We were free to roam the grounds and were met with beautiful leafy arches, artistic sculptures and marble structures. The Orangery at Settrington is a beautiful location in all seasons and we really wanted to showcase all its art, beauty and refinement in our finished images.
The decoration was beautifully designed and put together by Laura from Ambience Venue Styling in York. The team worked with a rich, opulent burgundy, gold and red tonal colour palette and there were tables laden with scented candles, extravagant golden cutlery and sequined tablecloths.
The stunning cakes by Zoe’s Fancy Cakes echoed the colour theme and were each hand-adorned with colours and breath-taking artwork.
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