July 25th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
The bride and groom of today’s real wedding chose a ‘classy not trashy’ theme for their big day and we’re sure you’ll agree they surpassed their goal, with an elegant colour scheme of pink, grey and silver, and just the right amount of sparkle.
Their chosen Cheshire venue is dressed to the nines – the swags draped from the ceiling complete with fairy lights all pulled together by a disco-ball chandelier looks very effective in the cosy lodge setting, especially by nightfall. We also love Rachel’s choice of centrepieces, not only because the martini glasses overflowing with gypsophila and lush blooms look super pretty, but because the beauty of tall centrepieces is they give great impact when guests enter a room, but when they come to sit at the table the display is above their eye line, and so they can easily chat to everyone across the table without obstruction.
And bride Rachel has lots more fabulous tips too; from choosing edible wedding favours and arranging joint planning meetings with your florist and stylist, to attending open days at your chosen venue and booking your desired suppliers ASAP – ladies, you may well want to take note!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Lee Brown Photography.
rachel says: We got engaged at home. I got back from the gym and Paul said he wanted to go out for something to eat that evening. As we are both rubbish at making simple decisions, he said he wanted me to come up with three choices of where we could go whilst I was in the shower so, when I got out of the shower (with a towel wrapped around my hair and my pink dressing gown on), Paul was shouting my name from downstairs. As I hadn’t thought of three choices, I cheekily just ignored him and pretended I couldn’t hear him but, by the third shout, I thought I had better answer him so when I did, he shouted “Come down here, our song is on!” I thought that was quite sweet, so I went downstairs in my towel and dressing gown and, when I walked into the room, our song was playing, the room was full of candles and Paul was down on one knee. When he asked me, I was speechless (that doesn’t happen a lot). Then I asked if he was joking and then I finally said yes!
We got married on Friday 4th May 2018 at Styal Lodge, Cheshire. There wasn’t really a particular reason for the date, other than the weather is usually OK in May and it was the start of the bank holiday weekend.
We would definitely recommend Styal Lodge to other couples, especially those looking for small, exclusive venues. We wanted a small venue as we only had 75 day guests and we felt it was more personal to us. The gardens are lovely and, on the day during the drinks reception, the bride, groom, photographer and videographer get driven to a nearby lake in the grounds for photos. The venue is also easy to find and very accessible as it isn’t far from Manchester Airport, so there are good transport links. Another really nice touch is that each year they hold an event called Bridesmaids’ Brunch, where the bride can take up to three of her bridesmaids to the venue and they have suppliers there to chat to, live music and it is also dressed, which can be good for inspiration. Food and drink are provided and it’s just a really nice atmosphere, as it’s only available to brides who have booked their weddings. They usually have two or three open days each year too, which is helpful to go and see the venue dressed and speak to different suppliers.
Our theme was classy, not trashy and our colour scheme was light pink, grey, silver and a touch of sparkle!
For my dress, I chose a princess gown with a love heart neckline. The designer is Morilee and I purchased it from Blush Boutique in Uppermill. I chose it as it was the kind of dress I thought I would want as long as the style suited me – and luckily it did. It also had the right amount of sparkle and I loved the tulle skirt. I had looked on the internet at different dresses I liked before going shopping and saved the designers and style names in my phone. When I went into the shop and picked dresses out to try on, I purposefully didn’t look at what the designers were or the price as I just wanted to try on a mixture. Then, when I tried my dress on for the first time and loved it, I looked at the list in my phone of dresses I had made a note of and this one was the first on the list!
Paul wore a grey suit, with a silver waistcoat and a pink cravat, all from Moss Bros. The groomsmen all wore the same suit and waistcoat as Paul, but they had pink ties instead of a cravat.
The bridesmaid dresses were all from Dorothy Perkins and the flower girl dresses were from John Rocha at Debenhams. I also had a ‘bridesman’ who wore the same suit as Paul and the groomsmen but he had a dicky bow instead of a tie or cravat.
Lux did all of our hair and makeup and we were all so happy with it.
April 13th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
Today’s real wedding is all about the magic of Disney – the enchanting Beauty and the Beast to be more precise.
Our couple, Sarah and Stevie, decided on a nod or three to their favourite family movie, with the film’s much-coveted teapot, clock and candlestick all making an appearance on their special day. Combine this with a few unconventional twists – such as serving popcorn and swapping a traditional wedding breakfast for a rooftop barbecue – and we think this is an informal take on wedded bliss at its best.
With images by Claire Basiuk.
sarah says: We got engaged on 15th September 2015, while in Tenerife. We were on the second night of a family holiday, staying in a lovely hotel at the top a hill. Stevie was calling our daughter Sophia over to the terrace to have a picture taken against the sunset. Sophia, however, was more interested in going dancing, so was reluctant. I eventually talked her over where Stevie then picked her up, got down on one knee and asked to marry me. My reaction was “are you being serious?” – anyone that knows us will know why; we had been together nearly 11 years, already had a beautiful two-year-old little girl and marriage had never been on the table. I’d even been discussing how I would never get married on a hen do only two days before! My answer was, of course, yes and I will never forget that beaming smile on Sophia’s face, it was as if she knew what it all meant. The evening was then spent dancing!
Our wedding date was 18th September 2016. I loved the idea of having a September wedding (maybe as my mum and dad got married then) and 18 is actually my lucky number so this worked out perfectly. We weren’t bothered about whether we did it one or two years after we got engaged but looking back now, it was lovely that it was almost a year to the day.
We wanted a venue that could accommodate both the ceremony and reception and chose Great John Street Hotel in Manchester. We had always wanted a venue that had something a bit different and had loved the idea of a barn style venue. I realised though that my main concern was guests being able to easily get to the venue, and barn style venues don’t really offer that.
We were looking for a relaxed and informal feel to our wedding day and Great John Street offered this. It was different to any other wedding venue we had visited, and we just loved the quirkiness, the décor, all the separate areas that guests could relax in and, of course, the roof terrace with city centre views.
From the outset, we both agreed that we wanted to do our wedding a little differently, as neither of us like being the centre of attention. For us, it was all about celebrating with our friends and family, so we exchanged our vows later in the day, and decided not to have a formal wedding breakfast with speeches. Instead we opted for a barbecue on the rooftop where the guests could choose what food they ate and where they sat. This allowed us to mix with everybody. There was no pressure on Stevie, my dad or the best man to give a speech, this was entirely their choice, and they did this in the early evening with everyone on the roof terrace.
I wanted to be a bit creative with the decoration aspect of the wedding, as opposed to having just a colour scheme. We have a love for Disney and chose a Beauty and the Beast theme. This is my favourite Disney movie; it was the first film song Sophia sang and danced to and it has become Stevie’s favourite, too. We also thought that Tale as Old as Time had quite a good meaning for us, having been together so long. We realised this could easily become cheesy but I wanted to incorporate classy and elegant details from the film. A lot of the decorations and flowers featured those classic Beauty and the Beast colours of blue, gold and red.
March 20th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s couple had a January wedding, although you wouldn’t guess it from the pictures. These photos positively glow with sepia-toned sunlight, and the navy, peach and dusky purple of the colour scheme as well as the champagne tones of Carly’s dress create even more warmth.
Add some woodland details in the decor, roaring open fires and a magical Nordic honeymoon and you’ve got the perfect recipe to beat the winter blues.
With photography by Charlotte Boothman of Lottie Designs.
carly says: We got engaged on the 23rd April, 2016. Phil had booked us a night away in Wales, near Lake Vyrnwy. We went for a walk in the hills above the lake just before lunchtime and sat down at a gorgeous spot where the trees open up and you can see all of the lake. Not knowing that Phil was getting ready to propose (and feeling rather nervous), I decided that this was a good time for lunch, so he had to wait for me to finish a sandwich and a grab bag of crisps before he could ask me to marry him!
We got married on Friday 20th January 2017. Neither of us were really bothered about a spring or summer wedding, and we knew that you can never really guarantee the weather at any time of the year. So when we decided that we wanted to get married at Mitton Hall, we took the first date that they offered us! The gamble paid off, as the weather was amazing.
We got married at Mitton Hall in the Ribble Valley. We both love the Ribble Valley, so it was the first place that we wanted to look for a wedding venue. We’d only heard amazing things about Mitton Hall, and as soon as we walked in we knew it was perfect for us. We loved how each room was different. The main room was very open and light, which we knew we’d need with it being winter. However, the bar areas were really cosy with big fires.
We didn’t really have a theme for the wedding to begin with, but with it being a winter wedding I wanted to try to mix some rustic, woodland type décor with some gold/champagne pieces to add a touch of glamour and warmth. Everything else just fell into place from there.
Colour-wise, we wanted something quite subtle and laid back. We mixed dusky purples, ivory, dove grey and champagne tones, with navy and the odd bit of peach here and there.
My dress was called Erin by Ronald Joyce and I bought it from Bridalwear by Emma Louise in Bolton. I had tried on quite a few dresses before going to Emma Louise, but none of them felt 100% right. I’d always thought that I would have chosen a relaxed, bohemian style dress, but when I saw ‘the one’ I just loved all of the lace detail and the embellishment. It was also the first champagne coloured dress that I’d tried on and I loved it! It warmed my skin up the minute that I put it on.
I also wore earrings from Liberty in Love, which Phil bought for me as a wedding gift. He knew that I wanted to wear pearl earrings on the day, and he was so lucky with the pair that he picked because they went with my dress perfectly.
February 15th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
Given that we’re super excited about our Brides Up North ‘Pop-up Wedfest’ at The Bowdon Rooms in Altrincham next Sunday 26th February, we thought it best to showcase how fabulous the venue is with a real wedding that made use of its versatile function space.
Craving a relaxed yet fun big day, bride and groom Hayley and Tim chose The Bowdon Rooms as the ideal venue for their evening reception following a low-key ceremony at Altrincham Town Hall.
Keen to stray away from tradition, the couple threw the ‘wedding rule book’ out of the window and made the day all about what suited them – from posh frocks, suits and Jimmy Choos to an informal afternoon tea, signature cocktails and one big evening party.
So ladies, if you like what you see be sure to come view The Bowdon Rooms for yourselves at our event between 11am and 3pm on Sunday 26th February, by registering here (Hayley and Tim did!)
With images by Stuart Hornby Photography
hayley says: We got engaged on Christmas Eve 2015 at our local Italian restaurant Coco’s in Altrincham. It was totally unexpected as after us both being married before, we had pretty much ruled it out. Tim chose my favourite day of the year to propose and I was truly stunned! One of our daughter’s Amelia was with us on the evening and she screamed louder than I did!
We chose Friday 28th October 2016 for the wedding. I’m a little impatient and didn’t want to wait too long!
We got married at Altrincham Town Hall, which was beautiful, followed by pictures in Altrincham Market House, and afternoon tea and cocktails at the Sugar Junction in Altrincham. We for our evening reception by many more guests and partied the night away at the nearby Bowdon Rooms. We were very keen to have a low-key wedding, (despite going full out on the Justin Alexander gown and Jimmy Choo shoes of course!) and our day was truly perfect in every way.
With us both having been married before we very much wanted to shy away from tradition, so apart from posh frocks and a lovely suit, everything was kept very informal, hence the stand-up afternoon tea and cocktails! We did add just a touch of vintage styling.
altrincham wedding, andy murphy dj, brides up north featured supplier, brides up north sponsor, brides up north wedding fair, diamantes are us, four seasons floral, jimmy choo, justin alexander, kensington wedding cars, north west wedding, puure bride, stuart thornby photography, sugar junction, the bowdon rooms, uk wedding blog, wedding fair, wedding venue
February 9th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s real wedding will really get you in the party mood, with bagpipes, live music, caricatures, Irish dancing, magic and more!
Lindsey and Rory had the perfect countryside church wedding and celebrated afterwards with a rustic-themed do at Heaton House Farm.
You have been warned, though: further reading may result in foot-tapping, seat-dancing and a sudden urge for a glass of stout. Maybe best to leave this one until you’re out of the office…
With images by Jonny Draper
lindsey says: We got engaged in Dublin at Clontarf Castle on 16th May 2014. The beginning of that week Rory asked me to get the Friday off work as he fancied going away for the weekend – then he surprised me and told me that we were going to Dublin. I assumed we would be staying in the centre of Dublin where we have stayed before; however, we carried on and arrived at Clontarf Castle. I still didn’t have an inclination! During the afternoon, Rory suggested we have a few drinks in the bar before getting ready to head out for our meal later on. I remember just wanting to relax but little did I know that Rory had arranged for the room to be made up with rose petals scattered round the room and a dress he had bought for me laid out on the bed, along with champagne and chocolates. As we left the room Rory said he ‘forgot his wallet’ but that was just so he could get the ring from his bag and leave it in the bathroom bin ready for the proposal! After a few drinks we came upstairs and I was surprised at the room all beautifully decorated…I turned around and there he was on one knee! It was perfect in every way and I was glad it was just the two of us sharing the special moment together.
We got married on Friday 11th September 2015. We originally wanted Saturday 12th September, as that was the anniversary of the day we met, but it wasn’t available. Looking back, we made the right decision as the weather was perfect whereas on the Saturday it was chucking it down!
We got married at Gawsworth Church, St James The Great near Macclesfield, and our reception was held at Heaton House Farm. I’d always wanted a church wedding and the church is set in the beautiful countryside – the perfect scene for a wedding. Heaton House Farm is only 20 minutes away from the church and we couldn’t have asked for a better venue for our reception.
Both Rory and I love all things rustic and so a rustic wedding theme was an easy decision. I went for a purple/pink colour for my three bridesmaids and Rory and his groomsmen wore blue suits. Once they were both chosen it was easier to think about a colour scheme for flowers and decorations. Purple was the main colour throughout, however we incorporated other colours that would complement this and even it all out.
I didn’t shop around much for wedding dresses as I found a designer that I loved so it was just a case of looking for bridal shops which stocked her dresses. I ended up going to Amelia’s Bridal Boutique in Clitheroe, Lancashire, where I found my Morilee dress designed by Madeline Gardner. Her collections were just what I was looking for – elegant, feminine and stylish – and my chosen dress was just gorgeous. It was a white, trumpet style gown with a sweetheart neckline with beading and gems to the top of my neck. I also wore a long veil decorated with a few gems so that it would catch the light and complement my dress.
As I’d had such a good experience at Amelia’s Bridal, we decided to get Rory’s suit from there too. It was blue with a white shirt, a blue tweed tie, a grey tweed waistcoat with blue and brown checks on it and brown shoes.
January 3rd, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely. Usual service will recommence on Monday 9th January 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from 2016.
Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your real wedding was one of our top picks.
Luisa and Peter pulled off the impressive feat of a winter wedding without a can of snow spray or a gilded pine cone in sight. Instead, their big day at Colshaw Hall in Cheshire, was led by an organic woodland theme, full of warm earthy tones and plenty of grown-up black-tie glamour.
The food and the playlist were particular focal points for this Manchester music-loving pair, and the following day saw the festivities extended with an aprés-ski extravaganza. So get comfortable, perhaps with a glass of Malbec or a mulled wine – go on, Luisa would definitely approve!
With images by Jonny Draper Photography
luisa says: Peter and I got engaged in Barbados. One night we went down for dinner and, instead of heading for our usual table in the restaurant, we were led down a path lined with candles that took us to a private beach and a table for two. When we sat down and opened the menus, I saw all of my favourite foods and champagne. Then a steel band appeared playing Elvis Presley’s I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You. When I looked around, Peter was down on one knee; it was a truly magical moment. He made a beautiful speech and, of course, I said yes. We spent the rest of the week celebrating and relaxing; it was just so perfect!
We chose to get married on 19th December 2015 because it was the closest Saturday to the Winter Solstice – a date important to me and my mum. We wanted a winter wedding as we felt that there were lots more options to explore in terms of the decorations and the vibe that we could create.
For the venue, we chose Colshaw Hall in Cheshire. We wanted to make sure that the event was totally private and this was the huge bonus of Colshaw: the venue and all of its grounds are hired exclusively so we wouldn’t be sharing our special day with anyone else. Secondly, as Peter’s family are based in Suffolk, we wanted to make sure that there was accommodation onsite to ensure that the wedding weekend was as easy as possible for those travelling. Having looked at quite a few venues in the area, Colshaw’s accommodation was, we felt, the most beautiful. Each room has its own stunning theme and beautiful view over the grounds. Colshaw’s Peel Suite also offered a beautiful blank canvas; no wedding looks the same there. We had hired the main house for the drinks and canapés straight after the service and this offered a unique, cosy, Christmas drinks party atmosphere.
Theme-wise, we wanted to create a natural and organic winter forest. Peter and I love walking our dog Digby up on the Edge and we wanted to recreate that same earthy, woodland environment. I wanted my wedding to be just that little bit ‘out there’, and having the trees as the centrepiece certainly achieved that goal. As our wedding was the weekend before Christmas, I think people expected us to go down the more conventional festive route and it was truly lovely seeing their reactions to the chapel and the main room. We’d focused on lots of earthy tones, such as dark greens and ambers, making sure that everything was lit by candles to create warmth.
I had chosen quite a traditional and simple gown designed by Stewart Parvin with the lace detail as a nod to my Italian heritage. My dress was bought and styled by the incredible ladies at LOVE Bridal in Cheshire. They helped accessorise my gown with a Stewart Parvin veil, lace jacket and honey-toned belt which contemporised it perfectly. My shoes were Hangisis by Manolo Blahnik; I just loved their quirkiness. In the evening, I removed the lace jacket and added a thin sparkly belt to liven it up for the dancing. I visited several bridal stores and LOVE Bridal’s service surpassed all the London boutiques. From the beautiful little cakes they serve to the ‘grand reveal’, the wonderful Emma and Clare have it covered.
andy murphy dj, barretts event caterers, brides up north featured supplier, brides up north sponsor, cheshire wedding, christmas wedding, colshaw hall, colshaw hall wedding, colshaw hall wedding photographer, jonny draper, live lounge duo, love bridal boutique, manolo blahnik, polka pops, real wedding, red floral architecture, sam fitton, stewart parvin, the rush, trotter and deane, uk wedding blog, winter wedding
We strive to represent the very best in our industry, but Brides Up North cannot be held liable for the products/ services of our sponsors. Any bookings are made at your own risk. Terms & Conditions.
All images © Brides Up North/ original author. Images should not be reproduced without written permission. Terms & Conditions.