May 18th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s real wedding is so full of laidback, rustic charm that I’m certain you’ll become as fully immersed in it as we have here at Brides Up North HQ.
Talk about a barn wedding at its best! The big day of Matthew and Rachel is simple, pretty and personal, with bunting, paper lanterns and haybales a-go-go. It’s enough to make you want to grab a pint, a Pug and the one you love and saunter off down a country lane. Oh go on, then…
With photography by Katie Dervin.
rachel says: We got engaged over Christmas in 2014. We were supposed to be in the house that we were renovating, but it was nowhere near ready. Despite this, Matthew decided to set up a barbecue dinner of steak and sprouts (my favourite) – until the house filled with smoke and we had to decamp to cook on the street outside at 10pm! He’d set up mini Christmas trees and other little present decorations to create some festive atmosphere, although he said that the lids of the presents were glued on. I tried to open them and, given the supposed glue, was pulling really hard – until I opened one that contained the ring and it popped out onto my plate! Matthew rushed around the table to propose – although he’s still miffed I didn’t cry!
We decided to get married on the 20th August 2016 – we were looking for a warm and sunny day.
Our ceremony venue was Mellor Church in Stockport – Matthew grew up in the parish and the views are stunning. We then went onto Thornsett Fields’ wedding barn, which is local to us, with more beautiful views and we felt we could make it just how we wanted it. It’s a super-relaxed venue.
Our theme was a sort of rustic, ‘country gent’ vibe. We didn’t want to go too traditional or formal – we just wanted everyone to relax and enjoy their day in the country. There was lots of tweed, hessian, multi-coloured flowers and careful lighting.
I wore a fitted and beaded Maggie Sottero gown from Sense and Sensibility. It wasn’t what I thought I wanted as it was strapless and a bit ‘bling’, but I loved its vintage feel. It also came with a mini cape and I wore my sister’s veil, too. Amina Shaikh Wedding Services altered my dress slightly and I would highly recommend her – but make sure you book early.
Matthew wore a white shirt, black chinos, a tweed waistcoat from a small shop in Buxton and a purple tie. The groomsmen wore the same but with brown ties and my bridesmaids wore black beaded dresses from a seller on Amazon.
In keeping with the rustic feel, I travelled to the ceremony in a Range Rover.
February 16th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
Emma and Ben’s wonderful woodland wedding at Healey Barn combined an autumnal colour scheme with gorgeous grey neutrals. Their big day was alive with berry purples, burnt oranges and zingy reds and the resulting photographs are phenomenal.
This beautiful couple wanted trees, woodland and fields as far as the eye could see, and so Healey Barn in Northumberland was the perfect venue. Warmth, cosiness and a whole lotta love – this wedding really has it all.
With images by Willow and Hare.
emma says: My engagement ring was bought by Ben’s father as a gift to his mother when Ben was born. She‘d worn it since the day Ben was born until the day he asked her for it in 2014. On a sunny Saturday in September we decided to go for a drive into the countryside, as we often do. I still had no idea anything was going on. Pulling over near a secluded footpath with beautiful views over the Derwent Reservoir at Edmundbyers, Ben suggested we stretch our legs. We headed up into the hills, taking silly photographs and enjoying the sunshine. As we were standing at the top of a hill a Red Kite flew overhead. As a bird-lover, I got very excited and said, “This day couldn’t get any better.” Ben replied, “I can think of a way to make it better,” put his hand into his pocket and pulled out the ring.
We were married on 15th October 2016. I’d always dreamed of an autumn wedding as it’s my favourite season with all the colours and leaves. Both my parents and grandparents had been married in the autumn and had beautiful weather so we took a chance and it definitely paid off.
Our venue was Healey Barn, Riding Mill. We knew we wanted a relaxed, natural wedding and after seeing a few photos of the recently-opened venue we knew we had to go visit it. As we drove to the venue we were stunned at the surrounding area. Our one condition was that we wanted plenty of trees for our photographs and to guarantee the autumnal theme and Healey was surrounded by woodland and beautiful fields. We knew it was the place; the whole layout felt right and we could imagine immediately our wedding taking place there. We put the deposit down on the spot.
Everything about the wedding was inspired by autumn. For the suits and bridesmaids we chose grey with burgundy accents. We really wanted the flowers and foliage to be the main feature.
My dress was a Mori Lee 6788 from Elizabeth George Bridal in Middlesbrough. It was a beautiful ivory ball gown with a dropped waist. I’d originally been looking at lace fitted dresses but not found anything that really felt right until my aunty suggested I try something totally different on and pulled this one out. The second I came out of the changing room my mother, sister and aunty all burst into tears which, of course, set me off too. The girls at Elizabeth George were amazing – they made the whole experience truly special.
Ben and his groomsmen wore grey suits from Occasions at Debenhams. As everyone was so scattered across the world (two groomsmen in Devon, his brother in Australia, father in Thailand) we needed to find a suit that we could quickly change if they didn’t fit.
Ben teamed his suit with a burgundy paisley tie and tan brogues from Schuh.
My bridesmaids wore dresses from For Her and For Him. I was initially dubious about ordering dresses online but again, as my bridesmaids were scattered across the globe, I needed to get them made to their measurements and not off the peg. I chose three shades of grey to complement the suits and to act as a neutral against the flowers. I was so impressed with the quality of the dresses: they fit each of my bridesmaids perfectly and were great value.
November 24th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
Today’s couple took the ‘my way’ approach to their wedding by picking a theme and colour scheme that reflected their passions and interests.
Without a hint of pink to be seen, James and Fiona opted for a cool Britannia style wedding with a red, white and blue colour scheme and attire inspired by fashions of the 50’s and 60’s.
Bride Fiona, pulls off the look perfectly in a sweet tea-length dress, faux fur shrug and vintage birdcage veil, while her bridesmaids remain on form in striking red Vivian of Holloway dresses. We must also give a mention to the cute flower girls who look super-angelic in their twirly dresses!
With images by Eye of the Tyne Photography
fiona says: We got engaged on holiday in Northumberland. James grandparents were from there and after they passed away his mum bought a caravan so we would go a couple of times a year. One of our favourite places to go was Druridge Bay, which is a very pretty with lots of sand dunes, so on Easter weekend last year James and I decided on a little trip there, although the weather forecast was a bit ominous James insisted we go and made me walk up the biggest sand dune, even though I was wearing slippery boots and at one point I wanted to turn back but he pulled me up to the top. We then took some pictures and as I turned around he was on one knee.
Our wedding was on the 19th June 2016. We thought about June or September and our venue had a Sunday free in June which would be easier for my family to travel up from London the day before. When we booked it we didn’t actually realise it was Father’s Day until we sent out our invitations, but maybe this day had chosen us, as both myself and James’ father were not present at the wedding, James due his father passing away when he was a child and mine due to ill health, so it was a fitting tribute!
We got married at East Riddlesden Hall in Keighley, West Yorkshire. Their barn is a beautiful Grade II listed building. Our original idea was that we wanted to get married in the Yorkshire dales where we camp every year and looked into hiring a yurt, but the logistics were too complicated and as I had family and friends coming from London we decided on somewhere a bit closer to home. The barn was ideal as we could decorate it ourselves, and the backdrop was stunning for photographs.
We had a 50’s/ 60’s cool Britannia theme for the wedding. Both myself and James love 60’s music and I also love the fashion of the 50’s and 60’s so it was pretty much a given we would have some element in our wedding. We decided on a cover of Love is All Around, for the wedding march and played the Beatles and the Kinks during the register signing. My dress and bridesmaids were 50’s inspired and James’ shirt and suit was 60’s inspired.
Our wedding colour scheme was red, white and blue, so a bit different to the usual pinks. We wanted colours that reflect our own tastes and we also wanted vibrant colours that would stand out.
As soon as I started planning the wedding I knew I wanted a tea length dress. I have always liked vintage styles and had a couple of 50’s style dresses so knew that it suits my body shape and height. I did search several local bridal shops and looked at specific designers who did tea length dresses and ended up going to four or five different shops but each dress I tried I found either I didn’t like part of the dress or the material wasn’t right. Eventually I found a lovely shop called Wedding Belles of Otley. They had already selected a few dresses for me to try on, including one that and been designed as a bridesmaid dress but I was assured that lots of brides had chosen it as their wedding dress, although the colour was pink they also did it in ivory. As soon as I tried it on it was exactly what I wanted; lace bodice and satin skirt with buttons down the back, perfect!
I also like to accessorize and found the perfect accompaniment with a feather shrug and vintage style shoes from BHS. I didn’t think a long veil would suit the style of my dress so bought a plain birdcage veil and a lovely feathered clip from Debenhams, which matched very well with my shrug.
For my bridal hair and makeup, I used Le Keux Vintage Styling, who were great!
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June 23rd, 2016 | Rachel Parry
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 4th July 2016 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings so far this year.
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.
Today’s real wedding is totally getting us in the mood for summer. We love Beth and Dan’s gorgeous choice of venue for their barn wedding and stunning coastal setting, with them enjoying much of their celebrations outdoors!
Highlights for us include the pretty pastel colour scheme, the informal style wedding breakfast and, of course, Beth’s stunning fitted dress and gorgeous accessories. We would have quite liked to have attended this one ourselves!
With images by Photography34.
beth says: We got engaged on 24th December 2012. This was a special day for us as that’s the date when we got together. We had a nice little trip to Chester booked as a treat. Dan says he had put that much thought into my engagement ring that he didn’t think about how nerve racking the proposal would be. He’d had the ring made by a local jeweller, he choose the design and wanted it to have a twist. He asked for my birth stone to be entwined in it, so nobody knows that I have a secret amethyst stone underneath the diamond. When the light shines through you can see the amethyst. He waited all day for the right moment to present itself though I was totally oblivious. We drove back home from Chester, booked a table for our Christmas Eve date night tradition and then Dan proposed under the stars.
We did the legal parts of the marriage on 24th August 2015, then held our wedding ceremony and reception two days later on 26th August – the anniversary of our first date.
We got married at The Barn in Burniston, near Scarborough, on the coastal road. We choose this venue as it was just everything we were looking for in one. The Barn is beautiful on its own and the team there allowed us to have what we wanted, which made our day complete.
We didn’t pick a theme, we loved how rustic the barn was. We chose a colour scheme of pastel colours and incorporated them throughout, but kept the overall look very soft and natural.
May 5th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
Today on the blog we’re bringing you further inspiration for the setting of your big day with news of an exciting new wedding venue that will be opening its doors to brides and grooms in North Nottinghamshire next year.
Set to launch in March/April 2017, Hazel Gap Barn will be a new addition to the impressive portfolio of Brides Up North sponsors Cripps Barn Group. Over the years the talented group have transformed derelict barns up and down the country into stunning rural wedding venues with service and food that’is second to none.
Having introduced Cripps Barn Group’s wonderful Healey Barn venue in Northumberland to our readers earlier this year, we are thrilled to be sharing news of the group’s exciting new venture with you today. Always keen to bring you the latest news in weddings first, we’ve put our questions about Hazel Gap Farm direct to the team who will be running it – those on the venue hunt might want to take notes!
Can you give us a brief overview of the Cripps Barn Group and what you offer to wedding couples?
cripps barn say: Since opening Cripps Barn in 1990, Cripps Barn Group have slowly expanded to four venues – developing derelict barns into unique wedding venues. You can take a look at www.crippsbarn.com to browse the different barns.
Each barn is individual, but they share a certain style, and each barn’s team provide a uniquely personal service from booking to the delivery of the day.
Can you tell us a little about the company’s latest venture Hazel Gap Barn?
Cripps Barn Group are now delighted to have found Hazel Gap Barn, an absolute gem of a building on the extraordinary Welbeck Estate in Nottinghamshire. Hazel Gap Barn is set on its own in lovely countryside, some distance away from the well-visited Welbeck village. The estate have submitted a planning application and they hope to open Hazel Gap Barn for weddings and events from March/April 2017.What is the site currently like and how will it be transformed?
The barn is made up of two traditional red brick farm buildings, the barn itself and the farmhouse, which stand either side of a walled farmyard, destined to become a stunning courtyard with water-features, seating, trees and planters, sheltered from the wind and perfect for post-ceremony drinks. At night, this will become a magical place lit with fairy-lights, flares, fire pits and lanterns, so the evening party can spill outside.
The farmhouse and barn are fronted with two rather unusual and striking towers with wonderful tall arched entrances, providing a dramatic view to greet approaching guests. Between these runs the original farm wall, forming the front of the courtyard, while at the rear a new Oak Room will form the link the barn and farmhouse, containing both a light-filled dining room with spectacular country views across the lawn and into the woods, and a fabulous bar opening into the courtyard.
The barn will be re-roofed with traditionally-crafted oak timbers, and a giant brick fireplace added to make the most perfect ceremony room. After the evening meal, this room will be transformed into the dance floor.
January 12th, 2016 | Julia Braime
Healey Barn is is a wonderful new wedding venue in the Northumbrian countryside, near the small village of Healey, 6 miles south of Corbridge in the Tyne Valley, made up of a collection of traditional stone farm buildings surrounding a stunning sheltered courtyard.
Today, we’re thrilled to be able to give Brides Up North a private tour and add this gorgeousrelaxed & rustic setting to our dream venue list.
healey barn say: Our main building, the Long Barn, has a spectacular oak “raised cruck” roof, three giant candelabra, wall-mounted candle holders, a fairy-lit ceiling and, of course, a barn-sized stone fireplace. This creates an enchanting and romantic atmosphere, perfect for civil ceremonies or for the arrival point after a church wedding – and this later becomes the dance floor!
Joining the Long Barn is the Dining Room, the old cow byre, with another lovely oak roof, a glass wall looking into the Courtyard on one side, and windows to a fantastic Northumbrian view on the other. The Dining Room is spacious and luxurious for smaller numbers, but will accommodate higher numbers. At the end of the Dining Room is a copper-clad bar, which has a licence until 1am.
The Courtyard is sheltered by the buildings and is perfect for post-ceremony drinks on a mild day, and at night looks magical with fairy-lit trees, fire pits and lanterns. There are 3 giant oak planters with seats around them, 6 umbrella-topped trees, and various benches, cosy sun traps and planted troughs and borders. There is also a shelter with garden furniture; providing a covered outside area and a smokers’ refuge.
The northernmost building, the Store Room, contains smart toilets and also the Bride’s Room, where, before civil ceremonies, the Bride can arrive discreetly and see the registrars before making her entrance into the Long Room.
If it is a relaxed feel a couple want, with incredible food and great service, this is the place for them!
What facilities does it have?
Couples have exclusive use of the barn during their wedding. We have a civil ceremony licence – inside and outside and we have a music and bar licence till 1am. We have a separate ceremony room, dining room and bridal room – so the day will flow naturally and with ease. There is no waiting around during the day for rooms to be set up.
Each couple has a dedicated wedding coordinator throughout the planning process and a front of house on the day helping to run everything smoothly. We also have in-house caterers, and there’s an 8-spit rotisserie visible through a glass screen from the Dining Room, and large mobile BBQ which can be moved in and out of sight as appropriate.
We have stunning, landscaped gardens – ideal for the backdrop of those important wedding photos. There are views overlooking the gorgeous Northumberland countryside too!
What sort of numbers are we talking?
The Long Barn used for ceremonies has a licence for 140 people and the Dining Room has a capacity for 140 guests. Additional evening guests are more than welcome too, and the barn can accommodate up to 200 in total in the evening.
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