Luxury Wedding Fairs With Top UK Wedding Blog Brides Up North

(Almost) High Street Honey: Alice & Olivia

April 9th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Alice & Olivia ZACK

I’ve spent the last three days staring at beautiful wedding dresses (two at White Gallery in London and last Sunday at our Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition at Nostell Priory) and you know what?  I don’t feel like stopping anytime soon.

Yesterday after our meetings and viewings were concluded and before hopping back on the train Up North, Ellie and I headed for my spiritual home, Harvey Nichols, Knightsbridge, for a slap up sushi lunch and a spot of browsing.  Alice & Olivia MCBAIN

One thing I was obsessed with when planning my own wedding was my “going away” dress.  You know, the fabulous frock that I would slip into as my new husband whisked me off on our fabulous honeymoon to live happily ever after (whilst our friends went back to work on Monday).  The pressure was on and dress had to be perfect – a little bit Audrey, a little bit Grace, flirty, sparkly, a nod to bridal and ever so Summer Holiday (in October).

So today, four years after our wedding (goddammit!) I found the perfect frock.  Step forward Alice & Oliva, Stacey Bendet I salute you. I seriously thought about whipping out the credit card then and there, but decided to accept that it wasn’t meant to be (for me anyway) and share my find with you actual soon-to-be-weds instead.

Alice & Olivia CLOVER

(^^^This one^^^)

Alice & Olivia EADDY

Alice & Olivia BRIT

Alice & Olivia ADELIA  

Alice & Olivia ANIKA

And whilst looking around, I spotted lots more bridal-esque pieces that could certainly make it into the shortlist for a pretty rehearsal dinner outfit, engagement party frock, special hen party piece or even to walk the aisle itself.  Ok, so a designer in Harvey Nichols ain’t exactly budget, but if we’re quibbling, fact: HN is actually on the “high street”. 

Technicalities aside, I think Alice & Olivia totally deserves the Brides Up North High Street Honey accolade.  What do you think?

I think I want to go shopping.  Now.

Alice & Olivia GORE

Alice & Olivia HILTA

Alice & Olivia PERCIE

Alice & Olivia LENA

 

. Alice & Olivia BETRICE

Alice & Olivia CHAP

Alice & Olivia FELICE

Alice & Olivia FRANCESCA

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Alice & Olivia

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Posted in High Street Honey, Wedding Dresses | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

#FROWselfie. White Gallery London.

April 8th, 2014 | Julia Braime

White Gallery 2014

Normal blog service will resume tomorrow, but for now, I’m just popping in to say hello before continuing with our hectic schedule of catwalks, appointments and coffee meetings here in the smoke for White Gallery London.

White Gallery 2014

To recap, White Gallery (and The London Bridal Show across the way) is a huge trade event in the wedding industry.  Its the time when the big name bridal designers showcase their new collections to the retail buyers (your local bridal boutiques) and the press (like me!). It’s a really big deal.

White Gallery 2014

@ Ian Stuart Bride 

White Gallery 2014

@ Lusan Mandongus/ Designer Preview

I’m here to preview the pretty before anyone else, to liaise with our favourite and up and coming designers and to give you a sneak peek into the trends for 2015, and the dresses that you might be gliding down the aisle in soon.

White Gallery 2014

@ Ian Stuart Bride

White Gallery 2014

@ Madeline Isaac-James

Yesterday, as well as visiting various lovelies on their exhibition stands, Ellie and I also took in no less than three catwalk shows (and countless glasses of prosecco) for Ian Stuart, Madeline Isaac-James and the Designer Preview including the likes of Lusan Mandongus, Charlotte Balbier and Naomi Neoh.  This morning we’re off to the Tower Of London to view Suzanne Neville’s latest offering.  Its a tough life…

White Gallery 2014

@ Yolan Cris/ Designer Preview

White Gallery 2014

@ Ian Stuart Bride

The collections and creations have been eclectic, demure, theatrical, beautiful and above all, fabulous.  I’ll be sharing more soon as I launch a fresh Designer Series of interviews for 2014/15, but for now, let me just say that if you’re just starting out on your dress hunt you should be very, very excited…

White Gallery 2014

@ Ian Stuart Bride

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Brides Up North

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

Posted in Events, UK Wedding Blog, Wedding Dresses | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

Wahoo! We’re Off To White Gallery London 2014.

April 7th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Anna Dello Russo For H&M

Image: Fashion Gone Rouge

So that’s another fabulous Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition done and dusted!  The already beautiful Nostell Priory looked the prettiest I’ve seen it yet yesterday at our fifth event of the spring season. Big, big love to all our amazing exhibitors (a truly superb selection) and gorgeous brides and grooms who supported our event.  We salute you… and hope you left feeling inspired by the talent on show and super duper excited about your big day! Hooray!

If you’ve not popped in to see us at one of our beautiful events yet – or if you have and would like to do it all over again – there’s still plenty of time this season!  Pop one of these stunners in your diary

Its a quick turnaound at Brides Up North HQ today – no rest for the wicked (I must be pretty damn wicked!) – as we were up at the crack of dawn and are already on the East Coast Mainline down to the smoke, to catch up with the fun that’s already started at White Gallery London

Recognised as one of the leading international designer bridal trade shows, White Gallery London is set to present the finest in bridal design at its sold-out forthcoming fifth edition.  Press passes in hand, Ellie and I will be joining the trade at this hunting ground for the best in British and international bridal design, previewing the gowns and the gorgeous that will be landing in a bridal boutique near you next season.

It’s one of my very favourite events of the whole year, and I can’t wait to (do a bit of schmoozing and) see what my favourite bridal designers have lined up for us in 2015.  I’m hoping for structural extravagance, sexy silhouettes and even bolder use of colour in bridal wear.  Let’s wait and see…

Over 70 leading designers will preview their new bridal wear and accessories collections at the event including Alan Hannah, Amanda Wakeley Sposa, Anna Romysh Haute Couture, Annasul Y, Augusta Jones, Benjamin Adams London, Blue Bridalwear, Brides Desire by Wendy Sullivan, Cabotine Novia by Gema Nicolas, Caroline Atelier, Caroline Castigliano, Charlotte Balbier, Charlotte Mills, Christos Costarellos, Cocoe Voci, The Couture Veil, Cymbeline, Eliza Jane Howell, Emma Hunt, Emma Tindley, Encore, Franc Sarabia, Freya Rose, Gemy Maalouf Bridal, Hadas Cohen, Halo & Co, Harriet Wilde, HT Headwear, I Love Gorgeous, Ian Stuart, Ivory & Co Bridal, Ivory & Co Tiaras, Jack Sullivan Bridal, Jenny Packham, Jesus Peiro, Johanna Hehir, Karen Willis Holmes, KatyaKatya Shehurina, Lark Bridal, Linea Raffaelli, Lou Lou, Lusan Mandongus, Lyn Ashworth by Sarah Barrett, Maddy by Madeline Isaac-James, Madeline Isaac-James, Accessories by Madeline Isaac-James, Malis Henderson, Mia Mia, Miguel Suay, Miranda Templeton, Mooshki Boutique, Naomi Neoh, Nicki MacFarlane, Nicola Anne, Nicola Harvey Couture, Nilah & Company, Nordic Gems, Novia D’Art, Nymphi, Ozlem Suer, Parthenis, Patricia Avendano, Polly Edwards, Qiana Bridal, Rachel Simpson, Raimon Bundo, Sadoni, Sassi Holford, Sasso, Shelle Belle Couture, So Sassi, Stephanie Allin Couture, Stephanie James Couture, Stephen Yearick, Terry Fox, Timeless Couture,  Victorio & Lucchino, Watters Brides, White Ivy, YSA Makino, Yolan Cris and Zaeem Jamal. 

Then we’ll come back to tell you all about it!

We’ve seats lined up at some of the iconic catwalk shows including Ian Stuart, Madeline Isaac-James and Suzanne Neville, plus drop in appointments with our pick of the bunch.  We’re also looking forward to catching up with our friends and supporters from bespoke bridal label House Of Mookshi – based in the North East – at this their debut show.  Specialising in custom designed wedding dresses and bridal gowns from vintage inspired through to gothic, those girls have always got something fabulous up their sleeve.  

After all that, we’ll be ready for a drink (or three) and will be hitting the hard stuff with our industry colleagues at Kensington Roof Gardens for a cocktail party sponsored by Perfect Wedding Magazine and in association with the Retail Bridalwear Association.  I’ve a free pass for the evening as the hubby’s on babysitting duty back Up North, so make mine a Mojito please!

See you on the other side.  There’ll be lots of catching up to do…

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Image © 2014 Anna Dello Russo for H&M via Fashion Gone Rouge

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

Posted in Events, UK Wedding Blog, Wedding Dresses | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

THIS SUNDAY! The Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition At Nostell Priory!

April 4th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Nostell Priory Spring 2014

After a week or so’s break from our Luxury Wedding Exhibition schedule, the Brides Up North team are ready to bring on the pretty!  We’ll be reprising our popular event – packed with the area’s most fabulous exhibitors (completely sold out on exhibitor space, in fact!) – at the stunning exclusive use venue that is Nostell Priory this Sunday!

Sunday 6th April 2014

The Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition

Nostell Priory, Wakefield

Time 12pm – 4pm

FREE ENTRY

This is your exclusive invitation to a day of bridal brilliance at Wakefield’s most desirable and newly refurbished wedding venue: Nostell Priory.   A choice selection of the region’s finest wedding suppliers will be on hand to inspire and advise.  With fabulous giveaways and on the day discounts too, only the best will do for Brides Up North and Dine

As well as all that inspiration – completely FREE – we are also giving away up to 200 FREE Bride To Be goody bags, filled with glossy magazines, on the day discounts, treats from Brides Up North, exclusive offers and some little pressies from our amazing sponsors House Of Fraser and Love Hearts.  Just because we love you.  As demand is high, to pick up your VIP pack all you need to do is pre-register using

To register for for speedy entry and a free Brides Up North VIP Bride-To-Be goody bag fill in your details below, marking “NOSTELL PRIORY in the subject line and quoting “VIP.   Only the bride need register for larger groups.the form below.  While stocks last only.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Subject

Your Message

You can also email julia@bridesupnorth.co.uk if you do not wish to use the contact form.  VIP Bride To Be Goody Bags are limited and subject to availability.  We operate a first come, first served policy.

Red 5 Studios

Images of real weddings at Nostell Priory by Created By Karl Photography, Red 5 Studios and Peter Boyd Photography as tagged. 

Peter Boyd Photography

Karl Photography

Peter Boyd Photography

Trust me when I say this is one not to be missed.  This season we’ve got all the details covered – and more, all under one very beautiful roof.  There’s bridal fashion galore, with some of Yorkshire’s best boutiques in attendance – as well as some up and coming new designer – bespoke stationery, live music, flowers, event dressers, menswear, flash motors, photographers, photo booths, diamonds… you name it!

Karl Photography

Red 5 Studios

Red 5 Studios

Peter Boyd Photography

Red 5 Studios

Karl Photography

Peter Boyd Photography

You can also meet with the venue managers, Dine, and enjoy tours of the stunning ceremony room and rose gardens before returning to the refurbished riding school event space to get your wedding inspiration on!

Red 5 Studios

Peter Boyd Photography

This show is a personal favourite of mine, the space is divine and our exhibitors are a friendly and fabulous bunch, but the visiting brides are always so lovely at Nostell Priory.  It’s a happy job we do here at Brides Up North.

Karl Photography

So, is the date in your diary yet?  It should be. 

Red 5 Studios

Karl Photography

EXHIBITORS: Are you a wedding industry professional? Join the Northern Revolution! We would love to welcome new exhibitors to the Brides Up North family in 2014. We are now accepting exhibitor bookings for all our 2014 events.

Exhibitors will be strictly limited by category and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Since their inception in Spring 2012, all exhibitions have been sell outs on exhibitor space with a record attendance for every venue. Consequently, we expect demand for these shows to be very high. Get in touch as soon as possible to guarantee your place.

Please email julia@bridesupnorth.co.uk for exhibitor booking and pricing information.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Brides Up North/ Created By Karl Photography/ Red 5 Studios/ Peter Boyd Photography as tagged

This is a Brides Up North Event

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

Posted in BUN Wedding Exhibition, Wedding Venues, Yorkshire Wedding, Yorkshire Wedding Fair | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

Friday Fabulous!

April 4th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Friday Fabulous Kurt Geiger

What’s not to utterly adore about these?  Get ready to gleam!

Leila in gold glitter by Carvela Kurt Geiger, now just £59!

Price was correct at the time of going to press.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Image © 2014 Kurt Geiger

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

Posted in Friday Fabulous, Wedding Shoes | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

Glam Pastels. Diamonds & Lace For A Real Wedding At Rockliffe Hall – Hayley & Stephen

April 4th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Who said pretty pastels couldn’t come with a huge dose of glamour?  Today’s real bride Hayley and new husband Stephen are ripping up the rule book with their soft and stylish Real Wedding at Rockliffe Hall.

With images by Brides Up North Featured Supplier, Lee Scullion

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Hayley says:  We got engaged at the Burj al Arab, Dubai in February 2006.  Steven proposed on Christmas day in 2005. We didn’t want a party so we celebrated our engagement with a trip Dubai to pick a ring.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

We were married on 22nd September 2013 at Rockliffe Hall, Darlington.  I wanted a classy and timeless wedding and Rockliffe offers modern and old mixed together. We had our ceremony in the old arches which offered a nicer feel than just a function room. The colour scheme is quite neutral which enabled us to go for any colour scheme we wanted.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

We had lilacs, lavenders, ivories and a beautiful thistle colour in our stationery. Grey suits for the gents, accented with lilac cravats and handkerchiefs to give a subtle bit of colour to blend in with the rest of the wedding. My dress and the bridesmaids were all ivory. I wanted a neutral palette with the flowers taking centre stage. 

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

My dress was from Solutions Bridal Designer House in Orlando Florida.  The dress was antique ivory with ivory lace in a mermaid strapless fit. I opted for a very long veil trimmed in the same lace as the dress and a very glamorous belt made by Maria Elena and Manolo Blanik shoes with a beautiful vintage brooch on the front.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

The hair was prepped by myself the evening before (I’m am a hairstylist) ready for my friend Carol-Anne Jenkinson who is the owner of Platinum Hair Design in Sunderland. She also did her magic on the bridal party. I had my makeup done by Amanda Bell Elite Makeup Artist.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Our flowers were by Adam Prest who is very unique in his work and knew exactly what I wanted. My bouquet consisted of a vibrant lilac roses, astrania, astilbe,clematis,snowberries and sweetpeas. They smelt beautiful. The bridesmaids had smaller versions of my flowers with a mix for the top table and centre pieces for the tables at the wedding breakfast. We also had similar mixture for the gents’ button holes and ladies’ corsages.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

LEE SCULLION PHOTOGRAPHY H&S 2013 0207

We had six bridesmaids from two years old to sixteen.  The younger bridesmaids wore dresses from Monsoon and the two older bridesmaids wore a dress from Coast which was from the bridal range. I think they blended nicely together.

The groomsmen wore hired suits from Gavin Scott Menswear in Washington. The grooms suit was made by Ian Bone a visiting tailor. He came to our home and measured Steven up, we picked the material and and cut of the suit. It was a very professional and friendly service from Ian and we had two more fittings before the finished result.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Our photographer was the amazing Lee Scullion. We had a lot of recommendations from people but as soon as I saw Lee’s work I knew he was the man for the job.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Our videographers were Chris and Janet Hughes for One Digital Image – a great husband and wife team. They made a one minute video summarising the day so we could share with our guests and friends which was really unique in itself and was ready to view the following morning.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Our save the dates and invitations were by Noble Fine Art. They also made our favour boxes, the menu for the tables at the wedding breakfast and the seating plan in a beautiful pearl stock paper with thistle ribbon.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Simply Bows & Chair Covers dressed our tables with a new range of lace chair coverings.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

We had handmade chocolates made for the favour boxes from Robineau Patisserie in Darlington and mini bottles of whiskey for the gents. 

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

The cake was from Celebration Cakes in Peterlee, I scaled it down from the original design in the shop. It had six tiers with all different sponges and fruit cake. It had a pearl covering with roses and lace made from sugar paste and tied in with all the little elements from the wedding.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

We had Val Boyers singer and guitarist singing during our wedding breakfast and a fantastic local band (Fate) singing live on the evening of the wedding. 

Prime Entertainment provided Formula One cars which were very popular and we also hired Snaparazzi and their fabulous photo booth.  We got a book of everyone’s photos who had been in the photo booth with a message alongside the photos which is a really nice and different keep sake.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

I downloaded an app called Wedpics and invited all our guests to upload all their photos.  I thought this to be better than having disposable cameras and it worked well.

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Honeymoon wise, we’re are still working on that one, we want something different!

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to enjoy and take every moment in because it goes over far too fast and don’t drink to much Champagne!

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Lee Scullion Photography at Rockliffe Hall

Congratulations Hayley & Stephen!

Would you like to see your own Real Wedding on Brides Up North? Get in touch.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Lee Scullion Photography 

Lee Scullion Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

Posted in Featured Supplier, North East Wedding, Real Weddings, Wedding Photography | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

#OfficialBlogger Signing Off… For Now…

April 3rd, 2014 | Julia Braime

Brides Up North at The North West Wedding Fair

Made you look?  Don’t worry, Brides Up North isn’t going anywhere!

If you’re a regular reader of the wedding blog, you’ll know that I recently took on a special assignment as Official Blogger to the North West Wedding Fair.

We run our own beautifully crafted Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibitions in the Cheshire area – yes, these ones… do you have them in your diaries yet (you can pre-register for your VIP goody bag here)?

Cheshire 2014

But when Mercury Events invited me along to their huge event at the start of March, I wasn’t going to turn down an opportunity to meet so many lovely North West readers and wedding industry suppliers, or get my brand in front of so many new brides to be either (crafty eh?).  If – as a consequence – you are one of my brand new readers, HELLO you!

In the run up to the show I guest blogged over at their website once a week (catch up on what I was talking about here), and shouted about the upcoming event on the Brides Up North Facebook and Twitter pages.  I also hosted a very special Pinterest competition in conjunction with the North West Wedding Fair, which will see me lend my industry knowledge and sympathetic wedding planning ear to our lucky winner, Steph, who I was thrilled to meet for an initial chat at the event itself.

Brides Up North at The North West Wedding Fair

So, talking of the event, how was it?  Were you a visiting bride to be or an exhibitor?  What did you think?

Me? I loved every minute:  hosting the show’s visitor video (scrambling up onto the raised catwalk in my 4 inch heels and pink mini dress to film a segment must have been a sight to see!); catching up with my industry friends; sitting FROW at the beautiful bridal catwalks; tasting cake; trying on tiaras;getting excited over glittery things; trying a spot of crafting, and meeting so many lovely, lovely brides to be and their future husbands, friends and families. 

Brides Up North at The North West Wedding Fair

The highlight for me?  Meeting my Pinterest competition winner Steph and her lovely Mum, and hearing all about her nautical themed wedding plans.  Steph’s winning entry stood out for it’s originality, but also because despite being heavily themed, it was also very beautiful.  I’m looking forward to helping Steph out on her journey to “I do!”. 

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

Official feedback from the Mercury Events office looked good too, with over 2,000 brides and 6,000 visitors through the doors and 122 exhibitors already rebooking for next season. 

Mercury Events continue to invest heavily in establishing this show as a true ‘destination’ event for the whole wedding market across Manchester, Cheshire and Lancashire. This season they added the Garden Restaurant, the Vintage Crafts feature, Inspired Bakes: A Wedding Cake Showcase, an improved Catwalk build and show and a more fabulous VIP ticket package than ever before.  I can’t wait to work with the team again going forwards.  Just watch this space for more details soon…

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

The North West Wedding Fair

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Brides Up North/ Mercury Events

This is a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

Posted in BUN Wedding Exhibition, Events, North West Fair, North West Wedding | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

Full Bloom. Supplier Showcase: Sandra’s Flower Studio

April 3rd, 2014 | Julia Braime

Image: Joanna Gower Photography

Image: Joanna Gower Photography

At last count, we had over 28,000 Brides Up North subscribers, over 18,700 Twitter followers and over 10,400 Facebook likes on our page.  That’s a lot of love people! 

Keep it coming and #jointhenorthernrevolution across our social networks.  It’s an active, diverse and exciting community we have there – updated even more frequently than the blog itself, and the place for all the insider gossip, breaking news and casual content – and we’d love you to be a part of it.

The northern revolution wouldn’t be happening at all without the support of talented regional suppliers like the lady I’m about to introduce you to: the lovely Sandra of Brides Up North Featured Supplier Sandra’s Flower Studio.  I’ve invited Sandra along to our pretty pages to tell us all about what she can do for a bride like you on her wedding day.  Let’s meet her.   

How and when did you become a floral designer?

Sandra: I started out in floristry 22 years ago after leaving school and working in a florist shop. and became specifically interested in wedding design in 2000. Each year I increased the amount of weddings I worked on until last year I made it my full time profession setting up fully on my own.

What is your background and qualifications?

I have two NVQ’s in floristry but I was basically bench trained and have learnt many techniques by keeping up to date with trade magazines and going to demonstrations.

Image: Hines-Images Photography

Image: Hines-Images Photography

What services do you offer for Brides To Be?

I offer a full flower service from designing bride and bridesmaids bouquets, buttonholes, corsages, hair pieces, church pedestals, archways, pew ends, altar designs, to venue and reception table designs, entrance displays and anything else floral. I can also add in those little table details such as confetti, table crystals, tea lights and so on. I have also started to offer a dry hire service for all my vases, fish bowls, martini vases and candelabras 

What sets your business apart from your competitors?

I listen to my brides and make suggestions if necessary but ultimately they decide on what flowers they are having. If you want something and it is available and feasible to do, then you have it. So many times I hear ‘Other florists have said I can’t have…’ Of course if you don’t know where to start I will help and guide you through the process and as your plans develop and your flowers need tweaking then so be it. I also don’t mind how many times you get in touch, this is your day and it needs to be right for you and unless you are 100% happy neither am I.

Image: Natural Expressions

Image: Natural Expressions

Tell Brides Up North about making the finals of The Wedding Industry Awards.  Why did you enter and what does this mean to you?

I like these awards. They are, initially at least, voted for by my clients. I entered two years ago when I first started my business to see if I could compete with the best. I was shortlisted. This year I entered again to see if my brides were as happy as they told me – the voting is anonymous – and the comments I got back were overwhelming as were the scores. I was very happy to be shortlisted again. These awards give you a boost but also the comments give you an idea on where you may need a little improvement.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Featured Supplier, Wedding Flowers | Filed Under | NO COMMENTS yet, click here to start the discussion! »

Flower Power. Charlotte Balbier For A Real Wedding In Lancashire – Caroline & Stuart

April 2nd, 2014 | Julia Braime

Natural Touch Photography (30)

It’s off to Ormskirk, Lancs this evening as we join Caroline and Stuart to share in their gorgeous Real Wedding.  Caroline chose to style her day with an abundance of floral displays – to blooming beautiful effect!

With images by Stephen Rooney at Natural Touch Photography

Natural Touch Photography (54)

Natural Touch Photography (55)

Natural Touch Photography (1)

Caroline says:  We got engaged in Cyprus in July 2012 and were married on 11th October 2013 at West Tower Country House Hotel, Ormskirk. 

Natural Touch Photography (2)

We had looked at about thirteen venues across the North West but we couldn’t decide on any. There was something not right about all of them for us, but then we visited West Tower and it was absolutely perfect. Beautiful setting, friendly staff, incredibly organised – it just felt right.

Natural Touch Photography (3)

I stayed at Formby Hall the night before with my family and bridesmaids and my chief drove us over to the West Tower in the morning where we got ready.

Natural Touch Photography (6)

I chose quite a vintage style dress. It was Mocha in colour with cream lace over the top. It was a Charlotte Balbier dress from The White Closet in Didsbury.

Natural Touch Photography (5)

After lots of shopping around and trying on, the bridesmaids were in navy dresses from Coast and the groomsmen were in grey tails from Groom in Liverpool.

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Natural Touch Photography (8)

I carried a hand tied bouquet of whites and creams, the majority of which were roses.  We used Flowerstyle by Laurie who is in Formby – an absolutely amazing florist.

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As a special treat for our guests we used Ice Cream Dub who provided our chosen ice cream and sorbet and served them from their vintage VW camper van.

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Natural Touch Photography (20)

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Steven Rooney of Natural Touch Photography was our choice of photographer.  He was very easy going and professional.

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Red Events Creative provided the chair covers and sashes and Flowerstyle By Laurie our beautiful centrepieces.  Our table plan was our favourite places we had travelled to together rather than numbers. 

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Natural Touch Photography (36)

Our cake was the “Vintage Fairy-tale” design from Waitrose – just beautiful. 

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Natural Touch Photography (37)

Natural Touch Photography (39)

Natural Touch Photography (40)

We used DJ Steve Mitchell in the evening.  He really was excellent.  Our free bar also helped too get the party going!

Natural Touch Photography (41)

Natural Touch Photography (43)

Natural Touch Photography (44)

Natural Touch Photography (45)

I loved every bit of the day!  I really enjoyed getting ready with bridesmaids in the morning, I loved the actual ceremony which surprised us both, the speeches were fantastic and I finished off the day dancing with my new husband and then my Dad! Just seeing everyone having a blast was amazing!

Natural Touch Photography (49)

Natural Touch Photography (51)

After the wedding we went to Australia for an epic honeymoon for five and a half weeks, stopping in Dubai on the way home.

Natural Touch Photography (52)

My top tip for other Brides Up North is that flowers make such an impact. Shop around for the best but always barter!

Natural Touch Photography (53)

Congratulations Caroline & Stuart!

Would you like to see your Real Wedding on Brides Up North? Here’s how.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Natural Touch Photography

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Mostly Monochrome. A Cool & Casual Real Engagement – Stacey & Ben

April 2nd, 2014 | Julia Braime

Lucius Fox Photography

Usually, when I approve a submission for these pages, I ask for the majority of the images to be in colour.  I want my readers to be able to immerse themselves in my Real Weddings, and I think colour is such a huge part of that.

However, when Matthew of Lucius Fox Photography and Brides Up North reader and bride to be Stacey sent in their images celebrating Stacey & Ben’s engagement, my usual rule book went out the window.  This cool, casual and fabulously striking set of images could only ever work in monochrome.  Have I gone all arty on you or what?!

Let’s say hello (and congratulations!) to Stacey & Ben. 

Lucius Fox Photography

Stacey says: I have been a regular reader of the website since the minute we booked the wedding, so it’s a pleasure to be here.  I like reading other peoples wedding stories to get inspiration for our own day.

Lucius Fox Photography

UNIQUE PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY WARWICKSHIRE-13

Ben proposed on Christmas Eve 2009. We had been out for a romantic meal to start the festivities as our first Christmas together and as we left the restaurant and started walking down the parade in the rain under the Christmas lights Ben dropped down to one knee and popped the question.

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

We are getting married on Friday 18th April 2014 which is also Good Friday.

Our wedding is going to be extra special as we are having a Double Wedding with our best friends Charlene and Dan. We all had been looking at different venues to hold the capacity of our guests and came across somewhere special which we all fell in love with so decided to join forces!  The building and décor was stunning and exactly fitted in with our theme. We wanted somewhere we were able to spend the whole day without our families having to travel but something big enough with different areas for the space.

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

We met at work when Ben started working for the same company in 2008. We generally started seeing each other as friends from work who had just come out of relationships so nothing was too serious to start with. On our first date we went to the cinema to watch Slumdog Millionaire and as time went on we gradually become a lot closer the more time we spent together.

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

It took a good six months of dating until we decided we would see how things would go, as we didn’t want to ruin the friendship we had formed during the time we knew each other.  Once we decided to give a relationship a go it took no longer than two weeks before Ben had moved his belongings into my flat and I haven’t been able to get rid of him since…

Lucius Fox Photography

I love how caring Ben is and how we still act like we did when we first got together.

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

Our biggest wish for married life is happiness.  Simple. 

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

We came across Lucius Fox Photography and loved Matt’s work so we wanted to have an engagement shoot to have more photos of just the two of us.  We had already been shot by Matt in a family visit to Coventry’s War Memorial park with our two boys, and fell in love with all of the photos he had produced for us.

Lucius Fox Photography

Lucius Fox Photography

We were both so nervous about our shoot but we met with Matt beforehand for a coffee and instantly we knew we were in good hands, he made us feel so relaxed and for two people that generally don’t like being photographed he made us feel really at ease. We’re planning on putting our photos into an album to keep to show our children when they’re older.

Lucius Fox Photography

We’ll definitely be back to share our Real Wedding with Brides Up North.

Lucius Fox Photography

Congratulations Stacey & Ben!

If you’d like to share your engagement news, love story or Real Wedding with Brides Up North, I’d love to hear from you!  Here’s how

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Lucius Fox Photography

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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Posted in Engagement, Real Weddings | Filed Under | 1 COMMENT so far, click here to join the discussion! »

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