Charlotte Balbier

coastal drama. an ethereal styled shoot in seaham

August 1st, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth

Coastal Styled Shoot (c) Hannah Joy (8)

The wild and rugged North East coastline provides the dramatic backdrop to today’s stunning styled shoot, crafted by the talented Hannah Picken of Hannah Joy Photography.

After stumbling across Blast Beach in Seaham on Instagram, Hannah knew this was the perfect location for her shoot. Putting her very own wedding dress into the spotlight – Hannah opted for an earthy grey and metallic palette that offsets beautifully against the location’s magnificent rock formations, high cliffs and crashing waves. Add in some driftwood, glass bottles and a smoke bomb or two, and you’ve got an atmospheric shoot that really shows off this captivating beach setting with aplomb.

And then there’s the burnished lagoon of red water that seemingly transports the bride into another celestial setting altogether. We’re mesmerised to say the least!

Hannah’s here now to explain how she and her team of local suppliers, pulled the look together…

With images by Hannah Joy Photography

Coastal Styled Shoot (c) Hannah Joy (30)

hannah says: The styled shoot took place on Blast Beach in Seaham on the Durham coast. I wanted to create an ethereal styled bridal shoot primarily for my own knowledge and experience and because I just love to be creative. This style suits me best and is where my passion lies with my photography.

The location of the shoot came about when I was browsing Instagram. Seaham Hall had posted an image of this beach and as soon as I saw it – I knew it would be a great location for the shoot and just what I was looking for. I had never been to this beach before, so one evening, my family and I headed over to check it out.

Coastal Styled Shoot (c) Hannah Joy (24)

It was exactly what I had imagined! It’s a very unusual place with dramatic rock formations and an iron lake of luminous red coloured water. Upon further reading about the beach, I discovered it was used for the opening scenes of the film Alien 3; this added to the weird and dramatic feel of the location and it was just perfect for my shoot as I wanted something a bit different.

Coastal Styled Shoot (c) Hannah Joy (7)

For the styling of the shoot, my model wore my own personal wedding dress and it fit her just perfectly! My dress came from The Bridal Factory Outlet in Northallerton. It was lovely to re-use my dress rather than have it just sitting in a cupboard never to be seen again (even if it was a little strange seeing someone else wearing it!).

The dress is pretty simple by design and I decided to accessorise it with a rustic fur coat and silver accessories, bangles and rings etc to create a boho vibe and match it up with the pretty waistband detailing. The Irregular Choice shoes were my actual wedding shoes, too, and just so pretty – they were screaming to be photographed again!

Coastal Styled Shoot (c) Hannah Joy (34)

With the help of The Green Florist, a lovely local supplier just on my doorstep, we created a beautiful bouquet and headpiece. The brief was natural rustic and wild and I think they delivered this perfectly. I chose white and green to keep things simple and elegant whilst also working nicely with the dress and the surrounding landscape.

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here comes the sun. planning a destination wedding in the algarve

July 4th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

The Real Algarve (1)

While we’re clearly huge advocates of couples marrying in the north of the UK, we know that some of our lovely bride readers crave sunnier climes for their big day – and as we look out Brides Up North HQ’s windows while writing this on a grey and drizzly July afternoon – we don’t blame ‘em!

But if you’re going overseas and taking your destination wedding squad with you, which hot spot is going to tick those boxes? While we wouldn’t turn down the option of a ceremony on a postcard-perfect white sandy beach in the Caribbean, we think trying the knot a little closer to home has its benefits in that it should require less time and money to travel there. This hopefully means you could afford to get in a few pre-wedding trips prior to the big day to meet with venues, planners and suppliers, and would hopefully ensure most of those on your guest list could afford to make the journey too.

A favourite holiday hot-spot for us sunshine-loving Brides Up North girls is the Algarve (in fact our Editor has just come back!), and given our many visits to this stunning area of Portugal, we can safely say that it would make an incredible destination for an overseas wedding too. Not only do we love its beautiful golden beaches, idyllic white-washed buildings, friendly locals and fabulous food, but until autumn it’s pretty much sunshine central and is less than a three-hour flight away.

So, in case all this talk of a wedding complete with sea, sun and sand has your piqued your interest, we’re handing over the blog to the expert team at The Real Algarve who know a thing or two about celebrations in the southernmost region of Portugal.

As a privately-owned family business, The Real Algarve was established in 1995 by experienced travel specialists Lynne and Simon Bunting​, and the company is now also headed up by their two daughters Katie and Vicky. The team specialise in providing luxury villas and apartments to rent in the Algarve, and also have a wedding planner based in the region, meaning they’ve got the inside track on planning dream weddings in the Algarve – and they’re kindly sharing details with us here today…

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The Real Algarve team say: Thinking of tying the knot in the Algarve? Famous for its long sandy beaches, delicious food and welcoming locals, why wouldn’t you want to get wed there? The Algarve is less than three hours away, and has beautiful weather almost guaranteed until mid-October. For those tempted, we’ve put together the ins and outs of planning a wedding in the Algarve, with insider knowledge from a local wedding planner from ​The Real Algarve​.

legalities & paperwork

Getting married in Portugal isn’t complicated but there are a couple of important things you need to know before you start booking your flights and accommodation.

Just like in the UK, civil ceremonies and Catholic church weddings are recognised by law and are legally binding. As with any wedding, there is some paperwork that needs to be arranged in advance so allow plenty of time to get your documents in order. Your documents will need to be originals, Apostille stamped (a stamp which authenticates the document) and translated into Portuguese by an agency verified by the Portuguese Consulate.

For a civil ceremony, you’ll need long-form birth certificates and certificates of no impediment, as well as your passports. Catholic church weddings are a bit more complicated, as you’ll need to provide some permission letters from your parish priest and bishop – for the full list of what’s required, contact the ​Portuguese Embassy​.

wedding planner

Even if you’re very familiar with the area and have visited many times before, arranging a wedding in a different country can be a challenge, which is why it’s a good idea to consider hiring someone with some local knowledge to help out. They’ll be on hand to take care of the arrangements before you and your party arrive, leaving you able to enjoy the experience without the stress.

The Real Algarve (2)

suppliers

This is where you’ll need to tap into your wedding planner’s knowledge of local suppliers. They will be able to advise you on florists, caterers, makeup artists, hair stylists, and photographers in the local area and give you honest recommendations.

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muted magic. a beautiful & breezy destination wedding in cornwall – stephanie & stephen

January 20th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

www.gemmamcauleyphotography.com / www.facebook.com/gemmamcauleyphoto

As it’s pretty much the weekend we thought we’d take a little trip, heading all the way South to relive Stephanie and Stephen’s big day.

Keen to evoke nostalgic holiday memories whilst saying their “I dos”, the couple picked to travel south from their Lancashire home in search of a venue with sun, sea and champagne!

The Watergate Bay Hotel provided the perfect backdrop for their effortlessly gorgeous wedding in Cornwall, which featured a timeless muted colour scheme with just the right amount of golden sparkle.

So, grab your bucket and spade guys, as we’re off to the beach!

With images by Gemma McAuley Photography

www.gemmamcauleyphotography.com / www.facebook.com/gemmamcauleyphoto

stephanie says: We got engaged when I was nine-months pregnant on New Year’s Eve 2014/15 at midnight in Keswick town centre under the stars and fireworks surrounded by a large crowd of other people celebrating their New Year’s Eve. I was totally surprised and not expecting it at all, so I was in shock when he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him with a beautiful engagement ring! Obviously, I said yes and we had the best New Year’s Eve ever!

Our wedding date was 27th June 2016, which we chose in the hope of a nice sunny day so that we could have pictures taken on the beautiful beach.

www.gemmamcauleyphotography.com / www.facebook.com/gemmamcauleyphoto

www.gemmamcauleyphotography.com / www.facebook.com/gemmamcauleyphoto

Though we live in Lancashire, we got married at The Watergate Bay Hotel, in Cornwall. We chose this venue as it is very special for our family. I used to spend every summer at this hotel when I was little with my parents, sister and grandparents, so we have a lot of special memories there. It was even more exciting as we all hadn’t been there for more than ten years!  In this time the hotel had a total renovation and so was more amazing than I remembered.

Myself, Stephen, both our parents and our son Charlie, went down to visit the venue a year before the wedding for a long weekend. The weather was amazing and the hotel was more than we could have imagined. So, we booked the date there and then as it was my idea of a dream wedding venue. Floor to ceiling glass windows overlooking the beach in the ceremony room sealed the deal!

www.gemmamcauleyphotography.com / www.facebook.com/gemmamcauleyphoto

As the venue is so modern and the views are so perfect, I didn’t want to take away from it, and so we went for a natural colour scheme of champagne and ivory, with a splash of glitter for a bit of sparkle.

We didn’t have a wedding style as such, though in the evening we did a casino theme for a bit of fun as it’s one of our favourite fun hobbies. We hired casino tables to get our guest having fun and we also hired an amazing hand magician as Stephen is obsessed with magic and as a child always wanted to be a magician. He was amazing and really entertaining!

www.gemmamcauleyphotography.com / www.facebook.com/gemmamcauleyphoto

When it came to choosing my dress for the wedding, I went for a full lace gown with spaghetti straps and low back. It was more relaxed and beachy due to the venue choice but I still wanted to feel like a bride so it was perfect and I chose a cathedral veil to add a bit of drama. I bought my dress, veil, shoes and headband from Sugared Almonds in Earby, who were so helpful.

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friday fabulous!

February 5th, 2016 | Julia Braime

The perfect pumps for laid back ladies.

White lace espadrilles by River Island £18

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seashells & champagne. a beach wedding at st mary’s lighthouse – amanda & beth

November 23rd, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Beach Wedding at St Mary's Lighthouse (c) JPRShah Photography (53)

Buckets and spades at the ready guys, as this morning we’re heading to the North East coastline to relive Amanda and Beth’s beach wedding big day!

Picking a fabulous setting for their chilled-out ceremony – a lighthouse, no less – Amanda and Beth pulled together their seaside scheme with ease using the likes of seashells, rope and net for decor.

We loved the ultra-relaxed vibe to their wedding day and adore how their photographer has captured their personalities and love for one another perfectly.

With images by JPRShah Photography.

A Beach Wedding at St Mary's Lighthouse (c) JPRShah Photography (39)

amanda says: We got engaged on 26th July 2014, in Australia. We were out there for almost 3three months over summer whilst Beth was on placement but managed to travel quite a lot. Beth had already got the ‘okay’ from my mam before we jetted off; mam was so excited and happy for us but kept it secret from me.

A Beach Wedding at St Mary's Lighthouse (c) JPRShah Photography (27)

Beth and I had always wanted to visit Whitsunday Islands, the beaches there are among the best in the world so we thought it would be absolute bliss to visit. Beth had booked a hotel on Hamilton Island, and it was bliss. One morning we got up to watch sunrise. Beth drove us (in our hired golf-buggy, the only way to get around on the island) up to a view point called ‘One Tree Hill’ (which is also a fav TV show of mine too). She insisted we got out and sat on the grass but it looked too dewy for my liking so I said I’d stay in the golf buggy. To my absolute surprise she got down on one knee (on the gravely ground) and asked me to marry her…over the moon was an under-statement.

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stylesheet: water babes

September 22nd, 2015 | Rachel Parry

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image by Emm & Clau Photography

Here at Brides Up North we’ve noticed that waterside weddings are proving rather popular with our couples; be it a lakeside celebration in Bowness, a seaside wedding in Scarborough or a Tyneside ceremony in Newcastle.

Though the British weather is unpredictable, the various waterside options show that there are many more possibilities beyond the beach, and that getting wed by the water doesn’t have to mean taking the ceremony outdoors.

Some couples opt for venues that have spectacular views of a particular lake or river, while others choose to pitch up a marquee close the water’s edge so they can enjoy the pretty whilst still being protected.

Another idea we’ve seen played out by our brides and grooms, is to incorporate the setting into part of their plans for the day. So for example, they might organise an open-air bus ride down the sea front, book a traditional river boat cruise or take advantage of fab photo opportunities on iconic bridges.

Of course another way to tie in the setting is through the styling a décor of the day, whether couples choose to go all out with an obvious theme or simply opt for a complementary colour palette.

With this in mind, we’re sharing some of our favourite water styling options. So come, sail away with us…

watercolours

WATERCOLOURS

Clockwise from top left: image source, photography by Anna Munro| image source, photography Catherine Rhodes| image source, photography by Bek Grace Photography| image source| image source, photography by First Mate Photo Co| image source, photography by Christine Sara Photography| image source| image source, photography by Katie Kett Photography| image source| image source, photography by Jose Villa.

We love this theme, not only because of its soft, dreamy and modern appearance, but also because you don’t need to be getting hitched waterside to choose it. Basically it’s all about fluidity and beautifully blended, washed out colours.

Couples can choose to stick with just one hue, or instead pick a mixture of two or more shades. Elegant pastels such as baby pink, powder blue and lilac work particularly well, but so too do more punchy colours, such as magenta and tangerine.

Stationery is particularly helpful in getting the theme across to guests, with save the dates and invitations in pretty washed ink designs. The look can then be continued on the day with correlating name places, table numbers and menus.

Additional décor looks effective in delicate paper pompoms, watercolour patterned crockery and tie-dyed like fabrics in table runners, serviettes and bunting.

Flower choices should tally with the colour palette and mirror the gentleness of the theme, so think big, blousy blooms with lots of light petals as well as flowers peppered with tiny buds.

Picking the cake shouldn’t be too hard either as hand painted designs, particularly those of watercolour effect, are a current trend, giving couples plenty of options.

With so many opportunities to project the theme through the above, it’s not necessary for it to be extended to the wedding party’s attire though there are some truly stunning washed out, coloured designs available for both brides and their maids.

nautical nuptials

NAUTICAL

Clockwise from top left: image source| image source| image source| image source| image source, photography by Green Tea Photography| image source, photography by Laura Murray Photography| image source| image source, photography by Agnes Lopez Photography| image source| image source, photography by Caroline Tran Photography.

A classic, though there is a fine line between tacky and tasteful on this one. The key is to add subtle nautical nods throughout the styling rather than making it look like a seaside town has quite literally exploded all over your big day.

The look should be clean rather than cluttered and the colour theme mainly blue and white. Couples can go for either a deep traditional blue or a lighter, elegant tone. For a softer nautical look, we also like the idea of also adding a pastel shade to the palette, such as peach, diversifying slightly from what’s been seen before.

Décor for this one can be a lot of fun with the opportunity to incorporate shells, sand, anchors, sailing rope, boats and compasses, to help set the scene. Just take care not to overdo it.

Stripes are also associated with the theme and so can be added in fabric choices, cake designs and even attire. Perhaps the groom could wear a striped tie or dicky bow and the bride could slip on some nautical footwear, which might also provide her something blue.

In terms of flowers, most brides opting for this theme tend to stick to fresh white hues bound with stripped ribbon.

deep blue ocean

DEEP BLUE OCEAN

Clockwise from top left: image source, photography by Elisa Bricker| image source, photography by Emma Lucy Photography| image source, photography by EmmPhotography| image source| image source, photography by Jacqueline Dallimore| image source, photography by Love Life Studios| image source| image source, photography by Gucio Photography| image source, photography by Peach Blossom Photography| image source, photography by Spencer Photography.

Perfect for those who like to keep things simple, this look is based on bringing different colours of the ocean together.

While a plain blue palette can fall flat, this theme enables couples to add interest with varying shades such as turquoise, sky blue and royal blue as well as adding hints of greens and greys. The result should be fresh, relaxed and classy.

To play on the ocean theme couples can add small influences from the themes above, if they so wish. So water coloured style stationery would work well as would small decorative details, such as shells, driftwood and sailing rope knots.

Patterns in decoration can also help to add further interest and ombre details can easily be added to the theme as the varying shades appear to wash in and out of each other, just like waves.

While blue wedding gowns are growing in popularity, the theme can easily be reflected in other areas of the wedding party’s attire, so the bride can remain in traditional white or ivory. Rather than just picking one tone of blue for the groomsmen’s bow ties and pocket squares or the maids’ dresses, different ocean shades can be mixed and matched for a real aqua appearance.

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