November 20th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
If beautiful fonts, pretty patterns or cool graphics are your bag, then stationery is a part of the planning you can afford to get super-excited about. We at Brides Up North are most certainly fans of gorgeous paper goods (the piles of slogan-emblazoned notebooks on our desks are proof alone) and so we are delighted to be introducing a Sponsor to the blog today whose stationery designs have us all heart eyes!
Introducing lovely Lancashire-based Jess of Jeccabox, who offers a complete suite of stunning stationery to complete couples’ big day celebrations. From pre-designed beauties, to amazing bespoke creations, Jess loves nothing more than matching brides and grooms with the perfect pieces that are complimentary their chosen wedding theme and them as a couple.
We can barely take our eyes off her stunning marble designs, and don’t even get us started on the metallic foils!! Here to lift the lid on Jeccabox is the talented lady herself. Take it away Jess…
Can you tell us a little about your background and how you came to set up Jeccabox?
jess says: I have always been passionate about design and have always been a creative person. I originally started creating graphic personalised prints through Jeccabox and then wedding stationery was a natural journey when my customers stared to enquire about such paper goods – it was then that my for love for it really came to life! I have a degree in Interior Design and that gave me the basic tools I needed to explore my design capabilities further, and now I absolutely love designing wedding stationery in all its forms! Oh, and if anyone is wondering about the business name, Jeccabox is the nickname my mum has given me since I was a baby (and still calls me now!)
Can you give us an overview of the service and products that you offer you wedding couples?
Jeccabox offers complete wedding stationery suites; everything from save the dates, to invitations, table plans, place names, table layouts and even gifts for parents of the bride and groom! We can print on a variety of cards and can foil in various colours and metallic finishes.
How would you describe the style of your stationery and where do you draw inspiration from for your designs?
I’d describe our stationery as a real mix of traditional and modern styles. My inspiration comes from everywhere – architecture, pattern, print designs, etc. and I love to work with the brides and grooms and really listen to what they want. Whether it’s the theme, colour palette, even particular flowers and textures, I’ll try and work it in as best I can and as much as they would like!
In your opinion, why is stationery such an important element of a wedding?
It’s the first glimpse that any guest receives of the wedding; it’s so exciting to see the reaction from loved ones. The save the dates or invitations can give a real insight into the theme of the day and allows not only the bride and groom, but the guests to start to get very excited too! I also think it’s a great way to get the information out to guests and is a big ‘tick’ for any bride or groom!
How far in advance of the wedding would you advise couples to source their stationery?
It totally depends on the couple’s wedding; if it’s a destination wedding abroad, the sooner the better, for example! I think with save the dates, they can go out whenever the couple is ready, but with invitations I usually recommend anywhere between three and six months prior to the wedding.
What elements of the wedding would you advise couples to consider when picking their stationery and where should they look for inspiration?
I think elements such as the venue style, flower colours, suit colours, dress texture, and even suit texture can really get the couple’s minds whirling and before they know it, a theme that is often unique to them will come out of it.
Do you have a favourite design from within your stationery collection, and if so, which one is it and why?
I really do love the marble and copper foiling invitations; not only did I design them for a friend, they have proven to be a very popular design that I love to come back to.
Do you offer a bespoke design service and, if so, what is the process?
Yes, I pride myself on my bespoke service, which can either be done completely via email or social media, or sometimes I like to meet with couples to really discuss what they would love and show samples, card textures etc. I initially like to get the couple’s ideas, styles etc. and any wording they specify, and then I get going with the designing and always design until the couples are 100% happy.
November 20th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
With a penchant for all things history-related, it’s no surprise that today’s gorgeous bride, Aimee ended up marrying fiancé, Chris at the home of Titanic in Liverpool, with their vintage glamour theme tying in just perfectly.
Aimee’s fabulous Catherine Deane lace gown is the epitome of period elegance and we just love her vintage-inspired hair and makeup, beautifully completing her bridal day look. Donning an air force blue suit and grey tartan waistcoat, Chris was very much in keeping with the retro vibes, too…we feel like we’re swooning over a wedding from yesteryear, not one from earlier this summer!
Throw in some rather stunning wild and natural bouquets and the most beautiful floral arrangements for their ceremony space, not to mention Pimms, a harpist and an indulgent red velvet and champagne cream cake, and you’ll start to get a flavour of what to expect from the couple’s truly exquisite day.
With images by Robert Leons Photography.
aimee says: We got engaged on a trip to Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, on 9th August 2014. I have a history degree and I love visiting historic places across the country. Chris planned a surprise trip to my favourite stately home and proposed in the gardens.
Our wedding date was 12th August 2017. We wanted a summer wedding, and Chris is a teacher so it made sense to have it over the summer holidays. We had three years between our engagement and our wedding because we wanted to save up so that the day could be everything we dreamed of.
We got married at 30 James Street, Home of the Titanic, in Liverpool. Both the ceremony and reception were held here. I studied the building as part of my degree. It was the White Star Line headquarters where the Titanic was registered. Liverpool is also the city where we met. We fell in love with the venue immediately and didn’t even consider another.
The theme was ‘vintage glamour’, as the building itself was built in 1898 and my dress was inspired by that era. We were aiming for a ‘summer’s garden’ look, which we felt would complement the vintage theme. As such, there was no specific colour scheme, but the tones and details all matched our idea of what this should look like. The inside of the building was gold and vintage looking, so we matched our stationery to this.
I’ve always known that I didn’t want a traditional white dress. I started searching for a dress designer that created gowns reminiscent of a bygone era and I hoped that I would find one with golden tones. This search led me to Catherine Deane and I made an appointment with a shop that was listed as a stockist. I visited Agapé Bridal Boutique in Altrincham and immediately found ‘the one’. The Lita gown was everything that I had dreamt of. It was practical and comfortable but also glamorous and elegant. The staff at Agapé provided a warm and friendly experience and ensured that each of my visits felt special. I wore a matching veil by Catherine Deane but replaced this with a Debbie Carlisle headpiece (Sylvie) during the evening reception. The shoes I wore were Anastasia Gold by Charlotte Mills and I finished my outfit with a simple gold bracelet by Emmy London.
Chris wore a tailor-made, three-piece suit in air force blue with brown brogues. He wore this with a grey tartan waistcost, blue and white polka dot tie with a silver tie pin, and finished with a pocket watch and chain. This was all bought from Whitfield & Ward in Wilmslow.
The groomsmen hired suits to match Chris in air force blue with brown brogues, again from Whitfield & Ward. Their waistcoats were the same colour as the suit, and they had a plain navy tie. This matched them to the groom, but at the same time allowed the groom to stand out.
The bridesmaids wore blush, lace gowns from Coast. These were chosen as the lace nicely replicated the lace on my wedding dress.
November 17th, 2017 | Julia Braime
Is there anything more perfect than bagging your dream dress at a fabulously discounted price? We think not!! And so we’re delighted to be brining you news of an exclusive autumn sample sale set to take place at Brides Up North Sponsor, LOVE Bridal Boutique in Altrincham, Cheshire, later this month.
Owner Emma Draper and her team will be hosting the event on Sunday 26th November 2017, that will see a selection of the gorgeous boutique’s designer gowns available at unbelievable prices – we’re talking dresses from as little as £200 ladies, meaning you’ll be able to afford those dream designer heels after all!
But this is a one-day, appointment-only event, so you’ve got to be quick off the mark to secure yourself an appointment, which could result in you being the proud owner of one of the stunning gowns featured in this post!
So, prepare to take note, as the lovely Emma is here with the all-important deets!
emma says: The sample sale will take place between 9.30am and 5pm on Sunday 26th November, with 45-minute appointments available.
The event will be an exciting opportunity to get your hands on the last few dresses I have from previous collections (including 2017 styles) to make way in the boutique for brand new arrivals.
Because we only have one of each of these samples available to buy, we are selling these beautiful gowns at a reduced price and, for those brides who have done their research, we can promise these are deals you won’t want to miss.
Sample sales are ideal for brides who yearn for a designer dress, but whose budget won’t quite stretch, for brides with less than six-months to go before their big day (so no time to order new) or for brides who know exactly what style and fit of dress suits them.
All the dresses on display are for sale ‘off the peg,’ available to take home with you on the day, and must be paid for in full, so we encourage bringing someone with you who is both honest and decisive!
The gowns included in this event generally range from a bridal size 10 to a size 12, but most can be taken in by up a couple of dress sizes too.
Don’t miss your chance to snap up your dream gown at a phenomenally lower price – when they’re gone, they’re gone!
To secure an appointment, email email@example.com, or call 0161 941 6446, but be quick! First come, first served!
November 16th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
For this afternoon’s post we’re remining at the same venue as our featured real wedding – the stunning Arley Hall & Gardens in Cheshire, which is famed for more than just its glorious big day offering.
Having formed the backdrop to many a television programme and film set, you’re probably more familiar with this fine country house than you realise; especially if, (like us) you’re a Peaky Blinders super-fan. The BBC 2 hit series, which returned to our screens for its fourth series this week, used the grand Hall as the home of main character Tommy Shelby, who also happened to marry his now late-wife Grace at the premises.
In a nod to this link, fellow Peaky Blinders fan, Rebecca Jenkinson of Pretty Creative, came up with the concept of a gorgeous 1920/30s casual glamour shoot at Arley Hall, which she styled to perfection with the help of a talented team of North West suppliers.
And, just like the programme, the end images are nothing thought of gripping! We can’t get enough of the grand backdrops, splendid table setting and stylish attire, not to mention that bouquet!
One of the main reasons we’re so addicted to Peaky (other than a rather HUGE crush on lead actor Cillian Murphy) is the amazing outfits that are generally opulent yet understated for the females and incredibly dapper and sharp for the males – who would have thought a bearded guy wearing a baker boy’s cap could make us go so weak at the knees!
So, ladies, it’s time to embrace you’re inner Polly or Ada as stylist Rebecca takes over the blog to explain how she and the team achieved this deliciously decadent look…
With images by Amy Faith Photography.
Models, Rob Hunter and Stacey Taylor.
[jennaopne]rebecca says: Our inspiration for the shoot was casual 1920/30s glamour, with a bit of edge, influenced by the bad boy done good story of the cult TV series Peaky Blinders. We shot in late September as autumn was just starting to drift into the landscape.
The shoot was captured by Amy Faith Photography, who I love working with. She’s so good at conveying authenticity, beauty and edginess in her images. If you are looking for a wedding photographer, you really need to look at Amy’s beautiful work.
Our venue for the shoot, Arley Hall and Gardens, is a gorgeous Cheshire wedding venue, totally steeped in history and home to lots of different TV and film sets, including Peaky Blinders. I’m a huge fan of the TV series, so when the chance to do a shoot at Arley Hall came along, I knew it had to be our inspiration. With our own peaky blinder bad boy groom and his stunning bride.
In the last series, Arley Hall was the stately home of the main character Tommy Shelby, played by the gorgeous Cillian Murphy. It depicts a time where he’s made his ill-gotten fortune on the betting circuits at the horses (and general dodgy dealings!) and it’s where he marries Grace.
Although Peaky Blinders is really quite dark at times, there is an incredible love story within, kind of against the odds. It’s that feel we were looking to create, with a nod to the era, beautiful imagery, bridal inspiration and to capture the romance of the two main characters, Tommy and Grace.
November 16th, 2017 | Aislinn Thompson
Yes, we have a dress crush. Today’s bride Arlene wanted to look like a Bond girl on her big day and we reckon she absolutely nailed it in a gorgeous, backless Rosa Clará number with a graceful silhouette and divine vintage detailing on the shoulders and down the back. We also have garden envy, because the grounds at today’s venue, Arley Hall, would give any National Trust property a run for its money: deep borders bursting with colour and texture are juxtaposed with crisp topiary and rich red brickwork. The photographs offer up a visual feast.
In a colour scheme of navy and dusky pink, Arlene and Simon went for an elegant, regal feel with a touch of femininity to complement the glorious Elizabethan-style Victorian country house. With its opulent interiors, who could fail to feel a little bit Bond-esque?
With images by Cris Matthews Photography.
arlene says: Simon proposed to me at home on August bank holiday in 2015, after more than six years together with bubbles, Bob Marley playing and a display of photographs of us on our fabulous holidays. We then went to Gaucho in Manchester for steak dinner and he had organised a surprise party with our close friends at Epernay. The next day I was whisked off to Moddershall Oaks for an overnight spa break.
We got married on Saturday 29th July 2017. We wanted a summer day and a weekend, as we have a lot of teacher friends. My dad flew over from Panama to walk me down the aisle and the date also worked well for my 11-year-old stepsister and her school holidays in Panama.
Our chosen venue was Arley Hall & Gardens, Cheshire. We had our ceremony in the drawing room, the wedding breakfast in the gallery and the reception at Olympia Barn on site. I visited the venue one afternoon with some friends, as it’s open to visitors. I fell in love instantly – butterflies! Simon loved it as much as I did. Arlene driving up Arley Road to marry at Arley Hall – it was meant to be!
We also liked the venue as it was local and had a good mix of rooms to use and stunning gardens. Plus, I liked the idea of having a more informal area for the evening guests to party.
I wanted a fairly simple, elegant, classy style for the day. The venue is so opulent that I didn’t want to take away from/spoil its beauty. We would definitely recommend the venue: as well as it being utterly gorgeous, the staff were professional and friendly and we felt reassured the day would run smoothly.
My gown was from Knutsford Wedding Gallery. I am quite particular with my style and wanted a unique dress. After searching bridal websites and magazines, I decided I liked Rosa Clará gowns and booked an appointment as I knew they were stocked there. I was very keen on a backless, slinky dress. My spec was I wanted to look and feel like a Bond girl! When I tried it on first I knew it was the one, but that didn’t stop me from trying on 29 more dresses. Milking the moment!
My hair and makeup artist was Make-up By Sophie, based in Oldham. She followed my Bond girl spec –my bridesmaids and I felt very glam.
November 15th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
We’ve been out on the road again all in the name of research to share with you our experiences of the North’s finest hotels, getaway retreats and spas, providing inspiration for pre- and post-wedding relaxation, and sometimes also a setting for the big day itself!
Cue our recent visit to Matfen Hall – a stunning stately home set in 300 acres of lush parkland in the Northumbrian countryside. The award-winning Hall houses fabulous function spaces, accommodation and spa and leisure facilities, making it an option for sophisticated hen dos, romantic getaways, such as a minimoon, plus a dream wedding venue too.
All images by Sean Elliott Photography.
Ahead of a super-exciting wedding refurbishment at Matfen, we were invited to view the current celebration spaces and to see what’s in store to take this already gorgeous venue to the next level. And my word, are couples saying ‘I do’ to Matfen in for a treat! Keen not to give away too much at this stage, we will be following up with a Dream Venue post soon that will detail the stylish refurbish plans in more depth.
Furthermore, on Sunday 4th March 2018, we will be holding a Luxury Wedding Fair at Matfen to reveal the results of the quarter-of-a-million-pound-refurbishment programme first-hand – so be sure to mark the date in your diaries!
But for today’s post, we return to our visit. During our blissful overnight stay, we experienced Matfen’s warm and welcoming hospitality, making use of its leisure facilities, restaurant and accommodation.
We began as any busy business ladies should, with a trip to the spa! Hotel guests can enjoy access to such facilities or there are a number of full and half-day ‘Escape’ packages to choose from, comprising different treatments, food and drink, so ladies (and gents) can pick which best suits their needs and wishes.
There is a 16-metre swimming pool and spa pool, plus thermal suites including an aromatherapy room, steam room, sauna, ice cold bucket shower, monsoon shower and ice fountain. We worked our way round, prioritising the warmer options, to relax and revive weary muscles, before indulging in a little chill time around the pool.
Matfen’s treatment choices cover off facial, body and massage therapies for men and women, as well as ‘Finishing Touch’ treatments such as nails, waxing and tinting.
Feeling in need of a radiance boost part-way through our autumn season of wedding fairs, we both opted for the Skin Specific Facial. Having been led to quiet, candle-lit treatment rooms, our knowledgeable therapists took time to enquire about our skin concerns before tailoring our facials to help combat such issues using heavenly Elemis products. We both emerged with hydrated, glowing complexions and super-soft skin (if only we could indulge one of these treatments every week!).
Leaving the spa feeling super-relaxed, it was time to freshen up (and wake-up!) before dinner. We were staying in one of Matfen’s stunning Principal Rooms in the original part of the Hall, that was spacious, comfortable and boasted gorgeous views of the garden.
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