Brides Up North

underwater love. a beachy wedding at Newton Hall – esther & ben

December 3rd, 2014 | Julia Braime

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I’ve been at home all week with a poorly little one, and the cabin fever is starting to set in.  So what better way to cure the Calpol blues than this bright and beautiful beachy wedding from scuba lovers Esther and Ben?

Whilst we hole up on the sofa and recover, I’ll let you get stuck into this fresh and fabulous celebration, with images by Brides Up North Sponsor James Tracey Photography, and more than a few lovely personal details.

Let’s hit the surf

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esther says: We got engaged in September last year. We were visiting our scuba diving friends in Vietnam, Kerry and Eugene. Ben had arranged for Eugene to take us for a dive one morning, and after about 40 minutes we were coming to the end of the dive. Just before I thought the dive was about to end Eugene disappeared around a large rock as Ben and I followed I looked up to see Kerry, Eugene and a photographer staring at us. As I looked down ‘Marry Me?’  was written in shells in the sand, Ben got down on one knee and pulled out a ring.

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We got married on 18th August 2014 at Newton Hall in Northumberland. We chose to have a seaside theme as Ben and myself met as scuba diving instructors in Mexico and love the sea.

We originally looked at the venue because it was near sea. As we drove up the grounds looked stunning, inside the rooms were quirky and had a shabby chic feel, which fit our theme and personalities. As we walked into the ceremony room I could imagine us getting married there. It was the first and last venue we looked at.

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I chose a v-neck ivory fit and flare dress with black embellishment from Rosina Brown Bridal Boutique in Stocksfield. I never imagined wearing a dress with black on it but as soon as I put it on I knew it was the right dress. It was so flattering on me and unique that I knew it was perfect. I’m so glad I picked a dress from Rosina’s, she was amazingly helpful and professional and she seemed to know what I would like even before I did.

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Ben wore a black suit with an ivory waist coat and cravat from Moss Bros. My mum made all the guys blue pocket squares and shell buttonholes to match the girl’s dresses. The bridesmaids’ dresses we bought online from Etsy.

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James Tracey, our photographer, was wonderful. He made us feel at ease, he got on fantastically with all our guests and he wasn’t at all intrusive. In fact, we hardly noticeable on the day. James did exactly what we asked and more, we didn’t want many posed pictures, instead James really captured the emotion and overall feeling of our wedding and our pictures ended up looking stunning. We couldn’t have asked for more.

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I carried a bouquet that my mum made from silk flowers and brooches. Most of the brooches were given to us by family members and family friends. On the tables, we had blue and white sweet peas, which my granddad grew in his allotment.

Ben’s mum Jenny made beautiful drift wood signs and collages to decorate the venue. My family made all of our decorations and centrepieces.

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My mum made a three-tiered chocolate truffle cake with white chocolate icing, which her and my aunt Sue decorated with edible shells. She even made a starfish bride and groom as toppers!

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During our wedding ceremony we had a sand ceremony, which fit our theme and added our own unique twist to the ceremony.

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I think the moment where I was standing at the end of the aisle, my bridesmaids had gone down the aisle the music was playing and I looked up for the first time to see Ben at the end. We made eye contact and he smiled at me and his eyes started to water.

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We went on a little mini-moon for a few days to the lake district but we haven’t been on a big honeymoon yet. We are saving so we can go to the Galapagos with our friends Kerry and Eugene, which is our dream.

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My top tip for other other Brides Up North would be to enjoy every second because the day flies by.

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the great british wed off. a colourful wedding at Scarborough’s seaside – fiona & sam

November 27th, 2014 | Rachel Parry

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Today’s real wedding kicks-off with an incredibly romantic and festive engagement which is perfect as we’re soon to begin the big Christmas countdown with the help of our advent calendars (some things you are never too old for).

Sam and Fiona agreed on a laid back seaside wedding set around a cute afternoon tea during the day and a rocking party in the evening.

I love that Fiona was brave enough to shun tradition and work a blush pink dress on the aisle, which she looked fabulous in. Not to be left out, the guys also projected some colour with their daring but dashing sky blue bow ties.

So grab your bucket and spade as we journey to the maritime town of Scarborough for Sam and Fiona’s big day.

With images by Photography34

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fiona says: I was eight months pregnant with our first child when we got engaged. It was our first Christmas in our first ‘family home’. We set about putting the Christmas tree up on a snowy Saturday afternoon, when Sam announced that he had a special bauble to put the tree. He presented me with a gold gift box tied with red ribbon, and I opened it to find a glass bauble inside. I took it out of the box and realised there was a message engraved on it so I looked closer, and in the meantime Sam got down on one knee. The message on the bauble said “You are the love of my life. Will you marry me?” Of course, I said yes, and the glass bauble has pride of place on our Christmas tree every year.

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We chose 26th July 2014 for our wedding day – firstly as it wasn’t during the World Cup, but mainly as it was the anniversary of my beloved Nana’s death in 2009. She was my everything, and after a lot of thought we chose this day so as we could turn a sad day in to a happy day for the family.

We married at St Mark’s Church, Scarborough. My parents literally live over the road from the church and it held a lot of happy childhood memories, including me attending dancing lessons in the church hall every Saturday. Both our daughters were christened there also, so it seemed only right that we be married there too.

For the wedding reception, we decided on Betton Farm, East Ayton. Initially attracted by the love of their afternoon tea, I fell in love with the venue’s scenery and the relaxed vibe. We weren’t restricted to just one area, and that was a huge selling point for me. We had the marquee, the main building and the terraces so people could sit in the thick of it or sit where it was a little more quiet and idyllic.

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There was no theme in particular, we wanted a relaxed wedding. We know how hard it is with two small children to sit down for a three-course meal, so we took the whole element of that away and provided our guests with a traditional afternoon tea so as to keep the whole event laid back.

The most important thing was that the people we loved the most could share our happiness with us.

When it came to styling, I was inspired by The Great British Bake Off, which featured an array of colours set in a marquee in the country. I wanted pastel colours, which could be mismatched to create a beautiful pallet.

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In my head I wanted a simple, lace style wedding dress. After visiting a number of bridal shops, I made an appointment at Wedding Belles of Scarborough. I picked out a few dresses and after a discussion with the owner, Jackie, she asked if I would consider wearing a pink dress. I said yes, purely to keep my options open and mainly not wanting to appear rude. After trying on half a dozen dresses, the pink dress was next. I nearly said no, but once I stepped in to the gown I knew it was the one for me.

It was a one off Phil Collins bridal gown, which I wore off the peg. I loved the tone, the way it shone gold in the sun. I had never seen anything like it in my life, and despite it being everything that I said I didn’t want, it was the one for me – like a fairytale moment. I complemented the dress with an antique gold toned veil and a burnished gold tiara. I wore Paradox of London peep-toe shoes, but I had these dyed the same blush colour to match the dress. On the day I also wore my grandmother’s topaz ring.

I carried a bouquet of cream astilbe and my bridesmaids carried a similar bouquet of pink astilbe. I wanted the flowers to look handpicked and not too structure. I used Forget Me Not Florists in Scarborough, and after listening to the image of what I wanted, they created the most amazing bouquets.

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Sam wore a charcoal grey suit from Greenwoods, shirt from ASOS and shoes from Kurt Geiger. He wore the same bow tie and braces as the groomsmen, which I found on eBay.

I also found my mint green adult bridesmaids dresses on eBay for a bargain price of £10 each from a boutique seller. They wore pastel pink heeled shoes from New Look and finished the look off with a cream floral garland and a cream corsage, both of which were purchased from Boyes Department Store’s bridal range in Scarborough.

The flower girls (five in total) wore dresses made by my mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law. The fabrics and pattern were purchases from The Sewing Centre in Scarborough, and were adorned with the same flowers which were added to the bridesmaid dresses. Each dress was a different colour, so we had pale pink, coral, buttercup yellow, country green and a deep pink. Together the little ones looked so colourful.

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On the day, I walked to the church from my parents as it was over the road. Stopping traffic was fun! To get from the church to Betton Farm, we hired an open-top bus from Shoreline Suncruisers to take us via Scarborough’s North and South Bay. It was such fun, we were all singing and laughing in the sunshine, with tourists on Scarborough beach cheering and applauding us and cars beeping their horns.

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Our stunning wedding photographs were done by Photography34. Tony listened to exactly what I wanted and that was relaxed images. I didn’t want any traditional bride’s family and groom’s family pictures; I just wanted pictures capturing the magic of the day, which he did perfectly. I can see the happiness and emotion in the pictures, and that to me is priceless. I cannot thank Tony enough for the amazing memories he has given us of our day – such a talented photographer.

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My favourite part of the day was defiantly the bus ride, as it was light hearted and fun. Spurred on by the glorious sunshine and the emotional high of the wedding, we were singing Oh I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside and it was one of the groomsmen’s birthdays so we sang a rendition of happy birthday. It was quite literally a fun bus!

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Decorations on the day included bunting in the marquee, which was provided by Betton Farm, who also arranged some vintage-style bits and pieces that I had collected over time. Forget Me Not dressed the tables using wine bottles and jam jars that I up-cycled at home beforehand using twine and antique lace. These were dotted around the tables with wild looking flowers and tea lights. I also hired birdcages from the florist and had these filled with gypsophila, burlap and wild flowers.

We hired a vintage style bike to use as an alternative to a central flower arrangement and the florist moved this up to the farm for the wedding reception.

I also used Celebrate Balloon Box in Scarborough for several selections of brightly coloured balloons to decorate the tables. They matched the theme perfectly and the colours really stood out in the marquee. Andrea Willis Designs, from Scarborough, was a huge help in making various signs which I used in and around the wedding venue. She also helped to make presents for the bridesmaids.

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As we live by the seaside, and as I thought the colours would look amazing, I gave favours of Scarborough rock to my guests purchased from John Bull on the foreshore in Scarborough. I attached a manila luggage tag to each stick of rock which had different messages such as “All You Need Is Love” and “To Have And To Hold”. I tied the seaside theme in by hiring a ‘kiss me quick’ style vintage photo board, which was situated at the entrance of the reception venue. It created fun photo opportunities for everyone and kept the mood light.

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My cake was from Bimbles Cake Emporium, Scarborough. I had a three-tier cake, with individual chocolate orange, strawberry sponge and chocolate cream tiers, which was decorated in country green icing. It featured an antique gold ribbon and lace and was topped with the same cream corsage which the bridesmaids wore.

Our afternoon tea was provided by Betton Farm, which is renowned in the local area for its amazing cakes and scones. We toasted the speeches with champagne for all the guests, which was provided as a gift from my father. In the evening, we had a hog roast from Glaves Butchers with all the trimmings.

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We wanted a party, a pure and simple party, so we used Spectrum Discos, who was amazing and kept the dance floor full right up until the end of the night. I couldn’t have asked for a better night. He played songs from my playlist and seemed to time the mood right to get the guests up and dancing. Everyone had an amazing time.

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Instead of a traditional wedding guest book being passed around all night, I used a battered leather suitcase which had a banner saying “love notes” across it and asked guests to write us a letter on paper and place it in the case. It was amazing to read these messages as they included poems, pictures and words of love. I have made a scrapbook of these and treasure it dearly.

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Betton Farm is a beautiful, idyllic and unique setting for a wedding and I’m so happy we chose the venue, especially combined with the weather – it proved to be a spectacular setting. I would recommend the venue to other wedding couples.

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We took a mini-moon to Rudding Park Hotel and Spa in Harrogate. We stayed in a Follifoot Suite and the hotel couldn’t have done more for us. We were treated to champagne on arrival and were given the best experience. The hotel is stunning, the food exquisite and the treatments were out of this world. We are planning on taking a honeymoon with our two daughters early in 2015.

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My advice to other Brides Up North would simply be to be relaxed. Don’t stress and don’t be afraid to break from tradition. We tailored our day to fit exactly what we wanted and everything was perfect. Enjoy every moment, drink in every emotion, and most of all, have fun as it is the happiest day of your life. When I think if our wedding day, I still grin like a Cheshire cat.

All I wanted was to have fun on my wedding day, and boy, we certainly had that! It was so relaxed and laid back – I couldn’t have dreamt of more.

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Real Wedding Recap Summer 2013: Docksiders! A Real Wedding In North Wales – Danielle & Tom

June 25th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the team take a break until to rest and recharge for the second half of what’s set to be the biggest and best year year yet at Brides Up North HQ, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding pretty. 

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Usual service will recommence on 1st July 2013,  but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far in 2013, plenty of eye candy, new features that we won’t be able to wait to share, some special supplier showcases and a couple of surprises too!

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Now I try so, so hard not to have favourites… but goodness, today’s beautiful and spirited Real Wedding, sent to me by Dan Vernon Photography, real bride Danielle and first featured back in March of this year is testing my resolve.  Rainbow groomsmen, a rowing boat full of plonk, one stunning bride, seaside sing-a-longs and dancing on the dock… where was my invitation guys?!

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Relish it, and be inspired… 

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Danielle says:  Tom proposed on a Ferris wheel in a culture park called Tivoli in Copenhagen on 17th November 2011 (after 12.5 years!) it was also the same day my niece Sofia was born!

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We tied the knot on 7th July 2012 at St Fraid’s Church, Treaddur Bay, Anglesey and afterwards the reception was held in a boathouse close by on the inland sea.

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We chose our venue for it’s natural beauty and closeness to the sea. We also wanted to be close to home and childhood memories. This is where we both grew up. 

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We opted for a country chic, homemade style, with multi coloured chinos for our groomsmen, navy bridesmaids and a cream and yellow decor.

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I travelled in my cousin Craig’ s Volkswagen camper van, which he had specially valeted with beautiful flower petals!

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I wore a simple ivory chiffon dress from a boutique in Chester called Aristocrats and carried a hand tied bouquet of white Lily of the Valley and Sweet Peas, whist my bridesmaids had country flowers. 

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A friend played the trumpet for our marriage procession whilst my Mum walked me down the aisle.  My brother was my best man. 

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We used Snowdonia Marquee Outdoor Catering Company (North Wales). 

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I have the best aunties in the world who made a series of cakes and pies. We had cherry pies, chocolate cakes, cupcakes, coconut ice – amazing homemade cakes thanks to our lovely family!

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We had a harpist for the champagne reception and wonderful Casey Jones and Co playing live piano and Irish tin whistle for outdoor jigging down the jetty after the dinner.  Later on we entertained ourselves with an Ipod DJ and asked friends to submit songs to spotify playlist.

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All of it was the best day of my life, I cannot choose a specific favourite moment. I loved standing on the jetty with Tom and looking out to sea and then back at all our family and friends.

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After the wedding we honeymooned in Italy.  We went to the Amalfi Coast to an agriturismo farm for a week and then Venice for the second week.

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My top tip for Brides Up North would be to hire Dan Vernon! Let the photographer capture your moments rather than posed shots. Be comfortable with your photographer, Dan was absolutely exceptional and we enjoyed having him be a part of our day.

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Also, don’t worry about your dress, makeup, other people, enjoy the experience together as it goes too fast!

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Congratulations Danielle & Tom!

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Want to see your own Real Wedding featured on these pages?  Here’s how.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © Dan Vernon Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Wednesday Wedding Inspiration: Ballerina Beach

April 17th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Balllerina Beach Wedding Inspiration

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1. Groom’s Attire 2. BHLDN Isadora Gown 3. Leather Braid Bracelet 4. Rose Gold Flats 5. Sand Tealight Decor 6. Fishtail Plait Image 7. Driftwood Seating Chart 8. Table Decor 9. Coral Bridesmaids 10. Pink Wedding Ruffle Cake

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Today’s Wednesday Wedding Inspiration board by our regular guest blogger Katy of What Katy Did Next combines two of life’s most beautiful – ballet and the beach – to drop dead gorgeous effect.  Don’t know about you, but I’m hoping my dancing shoes will take me to places as pretty as this come Summer!

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Katy says:  This week dancer Lauren asked me to create her a wedding inspiration board with a beautiful theme. The bride and her groom are having a beach wedding with colours to reflect Lauren’s passion for ballet. The board was to contain colours of blush and coral, and to contain hints of the beach theme without using shells and ‘cheesy’ beach paraphernalia.

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Lauren loves florals, but was unsure how to introduce them into a beach wedding. I love the idea of placing various flowers in pretty glasses or small vases and dotting them around on the tables. The floral and driftwood wreathes (bottom left) combined with coral are beautiful arranged around large storm lanterns and are a sophisticated way of creating a beachy look with florals. I also love the really natural look of the floral wreathes in the bridesmaids’ hair!

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For the bride I chose a beautiful gown with sparkling sequins and a floaty tulle skirt (perfect for dancing – or breezy wedding shots)! Instead of a veil, a loose chignon updo or a structured fishtail braid would look stunning. I added a touch of metallic with rose gold in the accessories. The flat sandals have a touch of glam about them and are a great alternative to manoeuvring heels on the beach.

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My favourite part? The driftwood seating chart! A simple but effective idea that can easily be DIY’d by you and your groom or maids!

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Remember: the plan is to share a new inspiration board in this time slot every other week, either compiled by myself, regular guest blogger Katy or YOU: get in touch with your own ideas and inspiration boards! We’ll be discussing our inspirations behind the images too so it’s simply going to be a whole load of lovely.

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If you are a little less arty but in need of inspiration and still want to play along, we will also be taking requests for colour schemes and themes and making bespoke boards for my readers. Please contact me to suggest a theme or colour scheme.

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Click here to see previous Wednesday Wedding Inspiration Mood Boards

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 as credited, supplied by What Katy Did Next

This is not a sponsored post

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

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French Frills & Seaside Thrills! A Real Wedding In Cornwall – Adam & Clare

October 29th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Fauvette by Cymbeline, Evolve Photography

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It’s not often that a can say that they helped a bride to pick her wedding dress, but in the case of the gorgeous Clare and her beautiful wedding dress I was honoured to be involved in the process during an ‘on location’ day as a Saturday girl at The White Room Sheffield.

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Clare and her lovely Mum came in during the Cymbeline trunk show hosted by Chloe in her gorgeous boutique to check that Fauvette, with her swanlike layers of tulle and funky adjustable skirt really was ‘the one’. 

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And what can I say Clare?  I knew it all along!  Stunning. 

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Now Northerners Clare and Adam did officially tie the knot down in Cornwall, but I wouldn’t deny you a peek at their gorgeous day (and her fabulous frock!) just because of a little thing like geography now, would I?

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So enjoy your mini break down Cornwall way… as it’ll be back to good old Yorkshire later this afternoon!

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Clare says:  We got engaged on Easter Sunday 2011. Adam proposed over a picnic by the Minnewater (or ‘Lake of Love’) in Bruges, and we tied the knot on 28th September 2012 at the Watergate Bay Hotel in Cornwall.  We’ve been going there for years and it’s our favourite haunt for a mini break. 

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I chose to wear Fauvette by Cymbeline from The White Room. I wanted something fun, lightweight, and that I could wear easily and dance in – the underskirt comes off for shorter party wear!  I also had a feather shoulder cover from Monsoon for warmth when outside, and sparkly shoes from Jimmy Choo.  I carried a bouquet of white chrysanthemums by George Mackay.    

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Adam wore a seersucker jacket and waistcoat with dark blue trousers by Marc Wallace.  

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I chose a colour theme of bright candy colours, and my bridesmaids wore short, flirty dresses by Alfred Angelo in three different colours to suit three very different ladies.  The best man and ushers wore what they wanted, we just asked that they donned a different coloured hanky each to tie-in with the three maids’ colours. 

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I was nervous about the vows, but as soon as I entered the room the nerves disappeared and I enjoyed myself. 

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We purposefully kept the day fuss free and simple – to create ‘our perfect day’ we wanted to do something we would normally do but this time shared with close friends and family. Wedding vows at the hotel were followed by champers on the balcony and we then walked over to Fifteen for more fizz, speeches and fab food. We had free time on the beach/in the hotel and then a cream tea back at the hotel before dancing all night and late night Cornish pasty snacks. 

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The food, atmosphere and service at Fifteen was immense. Dancing all night with a room full of pals can’t be beaten!  We had a very carefully selected playlist to ensure that the dancing never stopped!

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We wanted to serve scones with jam and clotted cream so we asked Portreath Bakery to make them into a tower with a Victoria sponge on top to cut, decorated with strawberries to make it pretty. 

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We have a party to look forward to in a pub in Sheffield for a wider circle of friends and family in early November, we then go to Brazil for three weeks on honeymoon. 

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be that this is your day. Be selfish – create the day you both want, ignoring pressure or expectations from others.

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Congratulations Clare & Adam!

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Get in touch to see your Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North. 

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  – Images © 2012 Evolve

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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