Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

and kiss! rebecca ingram for a rustic wedding at combermere abbey – jessica & michael

February 8th, 2018 | Julia Braime

A Rustic Wedding at Combermere Abbey (c) Jess Yarwood (49)

What do a horsebox, a pizza oven and a donut wall all have in common? Nope, this isn’t our attempt at a bad joke, but rather they all feature in today’s stunner of a real wedding.

The lovely Jessica and her beau Mike booked out all of the cottages at their stunning rural venue the night before the main event and treated their guests to the finest in laidback outdoor cuisine to get everyone in the mood for the celebration ahead. Family and friends ate, drank and were merry, turning their wedding into a whole weekend to remember.

In planning their rustic big day, Jessica and Mike wanted to create the sense that the colours and textures were “organic…the same indoors as out”. Looking at their gorgeous autumnal palette, the groom’s tweed and the bride’s woodland blooms, we think they definitely achieved their mission.

With images by Jess Yarwood Photography.

A Rustic Wedding at Combermere Abbey (c) Jess Yarwood (63)

jessica says: We got engaged on a mini road trip. Mike simply came into the house one afternoon and said “let’s go!’ We started at Drury where we stopped at the chippy, drove all the way to the top of Hope Mountain, found a rocky outcrop and sat and ate chips. As I was looking out over the beautiful views of Wales and Cheshire a ring box caught my eye.

Our wedding date was 27th November 2017. There was no particular reason behind the date, but I’d always liked the idea of an autumn wedding. The colours of the leaves are so beautiful, although I was a little bit worried about unpredictable weather.

A Rustic Wedding at Combermere Abbey (c) Jess Yarwood (66)

Our ceremony and reception was at Combermere Abbey in Whitchurch. We booked the accommodation at Combermere for the night before meaning that both sets of family and friends could stay over and get to know each other. We had a total of nine cottages, which easily accommodated 49 guests. We transported a pizza oven in a horse box and served pizza, nibbles and drinks all night. The bridal party moved onto the Stone Lodge later on, and continued the party.

The theme we picked was rustic to fit in with our surroundings and the Abbey grounds, so we incorporated lots of wood and greenery. Our colour scheme was autumnal to fit in with what was going on outdoors – we wanted everything to flow and feel quite organic; that the colours and textures were the same indoors as out.

A Rustic Wedding at Combermere Abbey (c) Jess Yarwood (43)

I chose a Rebecca Ingram dress – it was a lace and tulle dress in a blush pink colour with white lace and matching veil purchased from Aristocrats in Chester. The staff were extremely helpful and made the process very easy. I chose it because I loved it on the hanger, and my mum told me before I’d even tried it on that it was the one for me. She was 100% right!

Mike wore a tweed suit jacket and waistcoat bought from Chester City Gate. He hired the trousers from Swarbricks in Manchester to match with the ushers’ suits. We’d seen Swarbricks at a wedding show and we loved their range of tweed.

A Rustic Wedding at Combermere Abbey (c) Jess Yarwood (61)

We had three sets of bridesmaids: the older girls wore Jenny Packham from Debenhams, the younger ones wore Next dresses and the babies wore Monsoon. They were all in shades of burgundy and pinks to complement my gown.

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first look: luella’s bridal 2018 expectations collection

February 8th, 2018 | Julia Braime

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With the weekend almost in sight, we think it’s high time for some serious dress candy; which might just be the extra inspiration you need if you’re about to embark on your dream gown search.

Today’s gorgeous loot of loveliness comes in the form of the brand-new collection from our fabulous Sponsor Luella’s Bridal. Located in the Wimbledon Village area of London, this independent boutique not only stocks a stylish range of creations from edgy international designers, but it also produces its own line of totally dreamy dresses.

Having just launched their second collection, titled Expectations, the team at Luella’s wanted you lucky Brides Up North readers to be among the first to see these utterly beautiful gowns in all their glory. And so today we’re brining you a first look at the five stunning designs that make up the collection, while finding out about the inspiration behind these fine creations.

Here to tell us more is the lovely owner of Luella’s, Rachel Attwell…

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Tell us about the inspiration behind Expectations?

rachel says: The collection is inspired by Trinidadian jewellery designer, Sarah May. The collection includes five distinctly different dresses, which have been carefully designed to match Sarah’s island pod rings, which were inspired by her original engagement ring and then her subsequent life journey. Named; Happy, Love, Dream, Believe and Abundance.

The idea behind the collection, is that each ring can be interpreted in the wearers own unique way and Luella’s felt that there was something truly special about having a ring to wear that is so personal to each individual.

As such, we felt that it was important to include an assortment of styles to reflect the essence of the rings and therefore our bride’s personality. Each dress has an element of sparkle so that even the simplest styles, still look and feel truly special.

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Can you give us an overview of the styles of dresses that make up the collection?

All of the dresses have been designed by the Luella’s team and are handmade in the UK. Each has been designed to reflect our beautiful free-spirited brides and includes a mixture of simple understated and intricately beaded slip style dresses and beautiful lace and tulle gowns. There is a selection of low plunging backs, soft flowing skirts, stunning hand beaded lace and our signature pleated skirt.

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What about the fabrics and colourways used within the collection?

The collection is made from a variety of beautiful silks, satins and French laces and the most exquisite selection of hand beaded appliques. We have used more than 16 metres of tulle in the skirt of one of our designs! The dresses are made in a mixture of colours ranging from soft ivories to warm cream tones and our Nieve dress also comes with a slip that can be ordered in a choice of ivory or oyster.

Talk us through the dress designs one by one…

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Isla – The Isla dress is made from two layers of sumptuous silk satin in a soft ivory colourway. The bias-cut design features a low v neckline and plunging v-back which is framed with the most exquisite handmade beading in a floral design in ivory and soft blush tones. The dress also features and optional long flowing train and can be made in either off white, ivory or oyster silk satin.

Price £2,800

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all angles covered: take a pic

February 7th, 2018 | Rachel Parry

Take A Pic (10)

Once a big day has been and gone, images and film are the ways in which we relive those important memories, and so we believe it’s super important for couples to document as much of their wedding as possible.

That said, it’s also key that brides and grooms aren’t distracted from their day, meaning they’ll need to rely on others to capture the action for them. While professionals can of course take care of this, getting guests to play photographers too allows for even more fabulous candid snaps to be taken, and can easily be arranged thanks to a fabulous service provided by our Sponsor Take a Pic.

Moving on from the days where disposable cameras were dished out to guests, Take a Pic specialises in hiring a range of digital cameras for the wedding day, which can be used by the groom and bridal parties during the prep and by guests during the main event – resulting in high quality images and video from all angles from the whole day.

There are various camera packages to choose from; from simple compacts for the tables or better quality cameras for the groom/bridal party. There are also packages with HD video camcorders, instant print cameras and even action cameras.

Better still, the process is simple and stress-free: Simply visit Take a Pic’s website and select your package, hire duration and your delivery date; then capture the action before returning the cameras in pre-paid returns packaging at your local post office. The data will then be transferred onto a USB stick and sent to your address, so you have all your guest images in one place.

Keen to find out more? Us too! As such, we’ve invited the Take a Pic team to the blog with their suggestions of the best packages and products for capturing different parts of the celebrations. And if you like what they have to offer, Brides Up North readers can get £10 off all orders using the discount code BRIDES10PO (online bookings only).

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wedding prep

Take a Pic say: We offer a specially designed ‘His and Hers’ camera hire package ideal for capturing your entire wedding day, including all the preparation from both sides of the family. This package includes two bridge cameras, for the bride and groom, capable of taking 20MP images as well as 720p HD video with optical and digital zoom. Those who hire this package tend to give the job of photographer to the chief bridesmaid and best man alike. This package also allows you to select a number of compact cameras for your guests at the reception too.

vows & speeches

If capturing the vows and speeches is important to you, and something which your photographer may not record on video, we recommend one of our HD video packages. Although most of our cameras have the capability of recording video, the compact handycams in these packages are much more up to the job, with 1080p HD video quality recorded straight onto a memory card. This package also allows you to select a number of compact cameras for your guests at the reception too.

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on the tables

The best and most popular package we offer is our standard camera hire, consisting of a select number of compact digital cameras. These are most commonly placed on your wedding tables to allow your guests to capture photos and videos during the wedding reception and into the evening.

the guestbook of the future

We have an instant camera available for those who want to fill their guestbooks with a photo alongside their messages to the bride and groom. We also offer a mounted video camera with tripod and remote as an alternative to a costly photo booth, designed for capturing your personal messages to the bride and groom. These can then be put into a film, with all your guests and their special messages.

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vintage vibes: an afternoon tea party for a summer wedding in the north west – katrina & patrick

February 7th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson

A Pretty Vintage Wedding in Manchester (c) Kate Gosney (19)

The summer wedding of Patrick and Katrina has a sweet vintage, village hall vibe and took place in their local community so they’ll always be reminded of their special day setting.

They chose an afternoon tea menu for their reception, with delicate culinary treats served on charming old-fashioned crockery. Add to that the bunting and fairy lights strung from the rafters, a homemade cake table showcasing mouth-watering treats baked by talented family and friends – and even a cheese table in the evening – and you have a wonderful, personal day that reflects Katrina and Patrick’s wedding wishes perfectly.

And the dress is rather dreamy, too!

With images by Kate Gosney.

A Pretty Vintage Wedding in Manchester (c) Kate Gosney (1)

katrina says: We got engaged in December 2016. I cycled home from work on a dark, rainy, Friday night. As I pulled into our road, I noticed that my car had been moved from the road onto our drive, which was a bit unusual. As I pulled closer, I noticed there was a note tucked under the windscreen and my heart sank, thinking one of the neighbours must have been complaining about my car being in the way. I couldn’t bear to open it but Patrick was inside waiting for me and he urged me to read it. Inside it said, “Katrina, seeing as this all started three years ago with a note on your car, it seemed only right that this should also be a note. Will you marry me?”

A Pretty Vintage Wedding in Manchester (c) Kate Gosney (20)

We got married on 29th July 2017. Neither of us wanted a long engagement and Patrick is a teacher, so this coincided with the start of the school holidays.

Our ceremony was at Sale Town Hall, as we wanted it to be in our local community and somewhere we would pass regularly. Our reception took place at Mobberley Victory Hall. We wanted the reception venue to be beautiful, low key and to allow us to do our own thing with it.

A Pretty Vintage Wedding in Manchester (c) Kate Gosney (28)

The old-fashioned approach to a wedding appealed to us, so we went for a natural, handmade, rustic and vintage look with involvement from family and friends.

A Pretty Vintage Wedding in Manchester (c) Kate Gosney (42)

I wore a Brighton Belle dress. I wanted a knee-length dress, as I liked the idea of being able to move around freely and dance.

My bridesmaids wore pale grey lace dresses from John Lewis.

Patrick and his best man wore beautiful blue suits, which were also from John Lewis.

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hessian & lace. a pretty wedding at the coniston hotel, yorkshire – sarah & sam

February 6th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth

An Elegant Wedding at The Coniston Hotel (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (61)

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.

An Elegant Wedding at The Coniston Hotel (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (30)

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.

An Elegant Wedding at The Coniston Hotel (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (34)

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.

An Elegant Wedding at The Coniston Hotel (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (64)

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.

An Elegant Wedding at The Coniston Hotel (c) Laura Calderwood Photography (37)

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.

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sun-drenched: a rural autumn wedding styled shoot in the north west

February 5th, 2018 | Laura McDonagh

An Autumnal Styled Wedding Shoot (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (26)

The life of a creative wedding industry type is a busy one and photographer Camilla from Camilla Lucinda Photography wasn’t alone in feeling exhausted at the end of a hectic and successful summer season. However, instead of hanging up her camera and kicking back for a well-deserved break, she rallied together a group of like-minded North West and East-based industry experts for some sublime creative play at her family’s farm in Carlisle. And boy, are we glad she did.

This rustic, nature-inspired autumn wedding shoot is full of charming homespun details with crates, chalkboards and pops of autumnal colour all making an appearance. It also features the bridal trend we can’t get enough of: yup, a sumptuous berry lip. Half prim and proper, half full-on fashion-y, we’re huge fans of this bold, seasonal look.

If you’re planning on getting hitched in autumn, this one definitely is for you. Making the most of the season’s gorgeous light, Camilla showcases the kind of sun-soaked photographs you can aspire to if you’ve set the date for September or October.

With images by Camilla Lucinda Photography. Model Sian Ashton.

An Autumnal Styled Wedding Shoot (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (28)

camilla says: After a busy summer season for all suppliers involved in the wedding industry, I approached a couple I knew regarding doing something a bit more fun and creative. When shooting weddings (or creating bouquets, headwear, cakes etc), you tend to be creating something to a fairly strict brief – with the shoot, though, we wanted to establish an overall theme and then let each supplier run with their own ideas. It was a shoot where we could all afford to think a little bit more ‘outside the box’. Personally, I wanted to do something that refreshed my creativity, and allowed me to play with natural light. After all, you can only really test your ideas on a shoot like this rather than on someone’s big day.

An Autumnal Styled Wedding Shoot (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (6)

The title we all worked off was ‘A Rustic, Sun-Drenched Autumnal Wedding’. I created a big mood board for all the suppliers and let them use that as their starting point for inspiration. Colour-wise, we all looked towards plants and trees in autumn and the colours they naturally produce: darker green hues, maroons, rich reds, as well as burnt oranges. The sunshine really worked with the scheme, drenching the photographs and props in beautiful golden sunlight.

An Autumnal Styled Wedding Shoot (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (9)

Colt Close Farm is our family farm; my grandparents – both 91! – currently live there. Since starting my wedding photography career and shooting lots of different barn-styled weddings, it’s been on my mind how amazing our family farm could be for a wedding or styled shoot. Therefore, it was totally my first choice location-wise. It allowed us to have full run of the property and surrounding land too, which was a huge bonus.

An Autumnal Styled Wedding Shoot (c) Camilla Lucinda Photography (41)

We wanted the styling to be in keeping with the look of the farm, so a mix of elegant vintage and a natural rustic vibe. The farmhouse itself is a beautiful sandstone brick building, so with the table set-up we went down the vintage/elegant route with a floral table runner, vintage table settings and candle holders from my gran’s personal collection. Calligraphy-wise, Jessica from Handwritten Decor created wooden and chalkboard signs, following the current trend in the industry and fitting nicely with the rustic farmyard setting. The flowers were supplied by Roseberry Floral and were stunning. We mixed and matched lots of details in different settings, for example the floral table runner was used on the table set up, over the bride’s forearms behind the cake, at the bottom of the Pimp Your Prosecco station, and around the Love At First Bite setup – it’s creative (and cost-effective!) to reuse elements for different parts of a day.

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