April 3rd, 2018 | Laura McDonagh
Chocolate hangover and intense back to work dread anyone? We hear you.
We know what you need: chilled festival vibes, rustic homespun details and bride on a zipwire! We’re picking up the blog after the Bank Holiday with a real wedding which ticks all the inspiration boxes.
Adele and Michele were married last summer at Northside Farm, Northumberland, home to a beautiful converted barn and some stunning rural views. The couple paid homage to Michele’s Italian heritage with live ‘pop-up’ accordion music sessions and a sumptuous menu featuring Parma ham, mozzarella and Prosecco (obvs). Food wasn’t the only priority, though – fun was also top of the agenda with an appearance from a magician, a table plan featuring cringeworthy snaps of guests and a photobooth guestbook.
Our favourite features, however, have to be Adele’s floaty boho-meets-Grecian-style lace dress, literally last-minute bouquet and showstopper of a flower crown, which result in a laidback earthy look with bags of originality. We likey – and we suspect you might, too!
With images by DPR Photography.
adele says: We got engaged on 13th May 2015, which was also our little boy’s first birthday. I was changing Enzo and discovered he was wearing a babygro saying “Daddy has something to ask you downstairs”. Even then I didn’t guess what was about to happen! When we came down, Michele was on one knee holding my ring with candles and rose petals on the floor. I had to walk back out the door and back in again, so he could actually ask the question because he was crying so much!
Our wedding date was Saturday 15th July 2017. We knew we wanted to get married on a Saturday in the summer, so we went ahead and booked the wedding – and found out afterwards that I was pregnant and my due date was 15th July 2016! Our little girl Alba arrived five days early but in the run-up we thought we might end up preparing for a wedding and a first birthday!
We got married at Northside Farm, Northumberland. We visited the barn when it was only a lot of bricks and a shell. We sat down with Ralph and Olivia and looked over their vision and instantly fell in love with the place. I always wanted a barn wedding and this place was a hidden gem. Ralph and Olivia tested it out themselves by getting married there first.
We had exclusive use of the venue and the wigwams for the whole weekend. Michele and his groomsmen stayed in the wigwams on the Friday and had a takeaway and drinks. We then had a barbecue on the Sunday after the wedding, which was so chilled. We absolutely loved the fact that we turned our celebrations into a weekend party rather than just one day.
Michele’s family are Italian so we wanted to add our own little Italian touches; not in-your-face-Italian but more of a subtle nod to his ancestry. We also wanted everyone to feel relaxed and enjoy themselves. Our guests were able to camp on site so we ended up with tents, campervans and teepees everywhere – exactly the vibe we wanted!
We didn’t have a colour scheme but we kept everything very rustic, using wildflowers and a lot of personal handmade touches throughout the venue. The venue décor was already very much to my taste so not a lot needed doing.
Dress-wise, I tried on a few different styles, but I just couldn’t find ‘the one’. However, I eventually came across Bex and her amazing shop Bexbrides, and I’m so glad I did. I knew I’d find my dress as soon as I walked in! I ended up going with Bex’s own design, which was an amazing white lace dress and we worked together on adding my own touches including a very long train. I was over the moon with the finished dress knowing it was completely bespoke and unique to me.
On the wedding day, a local makeup artist called Carla Donnan MUA did mine and my bridesmaids’ makeup; she arrived bright and early and fitted in effortlessly.
Tiffany V Hair did the bridesmaids’ hair and my older sister/bridesmaid created my wavy do. I didn’t want anything out of the ordinary and wanted my headpiece to take the attention instead.
October 6th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
If today’s real bride would have got things her way, she and beau Chris would have eloped to marry but we’re sure glad that Sharon was swayed by a larger-scale celebration in the Lake District – as we get to share all the pretty details of their big day with you today!
Surrounded by their family and friends, Sharon and Chris combined a pretty pastel colour scheme with a fun theme that gave nods to both of their passions (films and cats, need we say more!)
We love the relaxed vibes as guests have fun in the sun, entertained by garden games and live music. Other standouts for us include the super-cool choice of wedding transport and Sharon’s beautiful Nottingham lace dress and flower-crown combo for boho bride perfection!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Bethany Clarke.
sharon says: We got engaged on our fifth anniversary, on August bank holiday weekend in Dolgellau, Snowdonia.
We had spent the day wandering around Portmeirion, which is a little fantasy village perched on a cliff, filled dreamy Italianate architecture and with lovely views over the bay. It’s a beautiful but surreal place, which is why it was chosen as the setting for the 1960s TV show The Prisoner. Later that night we went out for dinner and Chris insisted on driving. He is a keen photographer and so he decided we would drive out somewhere after dinner so he could take photos of the stars.
I had been trying to talk him out of it all night as it was actually very cloudy and there was not a star in the sky, but he was insistent. We drove out for about half an hour, trying to get the best vantage point at the top of the hill, and eventually Chris pulled over into a layby and got his tripod out. I was in the car, playing on my phone and wondering how long he was going to be as I really needed to pee, when he came back to the car and asked me to take a look at his photos. I looked at the screen on his camera and he had taken a beautiful photo… of the clouds. “Aw hon… it’s a bit cloudy, isn’t it?” I said. “Yeah,” he sighed, disheartened. Then suddenly he pulled out a box. “Anyway, I have a present for you… I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind marrying me?”
It turned out he had been hoping to get a shot of the stars on the night we got engaged. I think I had previously said that my worst nightmare would be to get engaged in a public place with loads of people around. He’d decided to find the most isolated and private place he could find; under the moon, with just the stars over us and no one else around.
In the box was a ring with an amethyst stone (my birthstone). He had been trying for about two years to figure out my ring size, but as I don’t normally wear rings he’d failed at every turn. He had tried getting friends to ask if I knew my ring size (I don’t) and had tried measuring my finger with a piece of string as I slept – all with no luck. Rather than guess, he decided to let me pick out the kind of ring wanted and get his friend, a jewellery designer in Birmingham, to make it just for me.
We got married on 17th June, 2017. I really wanted to get married in the summer as I desperately wanted some sunshine on the day and we didn’t want to wait until 2018. Unfortunately, this left us with less than ten months to plan a wedding in the Lake District in peak season, so the date was very much down to whether we could get the venue and the registrar. We also renovated and moved into our house this year, so it was a busy time for us.
I spent about two months trying to convince Chris to elope to Iceland or Vegas. I hate being the centre of attention and the stress and expense of a big wedding felt like a terrible way to start married life. Somehow Chris talked me round – he said we deserved to have a day with all our friends and family making fuss of us.
Having been convinced to go the whole hog, we agreed to get married to in the Lake District, where I grew up. We got married at Belmount Hall, between Ambleside and Hawkshead. The building is part of Beatrix Potter’s estate, but the main reason we chose it was for the incredible setting with views of Esthwaite Water and Gummers How in the distance. As soon as we stepped out of the car we were blown away by the surroundings. Belmount was the blank canvas we were looking for; small enough that we could have the whole site to ourselves but with vast and beautiful grounds in which to enjoy the sunshine (I was adamant that there would be sunshine).
Once we had the venue, we knew it was going to be a ‘Pinterest wedding’; rustic and a bit bohemian with lots of little touches that would make people say, “That is so Chris and Sharon”. We’re both big film fans and cat lovers (Chris is a film and TV lecturer and I’m a bit of a crazy cat lady), so our tables were named after feline film puns. The Big Meowski, The Great Catsby, Furris Bueller’s Day Off, etc. An extremely talented young artist called Amy Lewis took our silly ideas and transformed them into some adorable cartoons for each table and I designed the table plan myself.
I don’t like matchy matchy colour schemes so I went for a pastel rainbow of dusty pink, light blue, dove grey and soft peach.
As a big girl with big boobs, wedding dress shopping was a nightmare experience and I hated every minute. I had been dreaming of a 1920s-style beaded dress, in the style of Jenny Packham or Eliza Jane Howell, but whenever I managed to track one down the samples were all size 10 or 12.
I had almost given up hope when I walked past Kula Tsurdiu’s studio in Nottingham. Kula is a Greek designer, but her base is in the historic lace market of Nottingham, where she sources a lot of her materials. I made an appointment with Kula’s manager Laura Summerson and she was one of the few people to really listen to what I wanted. She didn’t try to force me into a stiff, ruffled, strapless A-line monstrosity, like almost every other store I tried. The dress I eventually settled on was all-over Nottingham lace with a natural waist, long sleeves with tiny sparkly sequins sewn into the fabric. Knowing that the dress would be made to my exact measurements was a relief and Laura managed to make the whole process as stress-free as it could be.
September 26th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
For the boho wedding styled shoot that’s gracing our pretty pages this morning, we’re unravelling the art of macramé. Conceived by Lucy White from Little White Attic – who specialises in providing a modern twist on a traditional macramé technique – the shoot features an ice cool palette with a laid-back boho feel.
We never knew macramé could look so beautiful – and be so versatile too, with the skilfully tied knots intertwined into everything from the chair covers to the bouquets. Vintage books, candlesticks and quaint ink pots complement the macramé on show, injecting a whole lot of originality and creativity in to the set up.
Bringing on board a host of local suppliers, Lucy managed to bring her vision – of inspiring brides to channel their inner bohemian vibe – to life, and we simply adore the finished look. We’ll now hand the blog over to Lucy, as she talks us through the shoot and the evolution of this gorgeous bridal trend.
With images by Bobtale Photography.
lucy says: It is hard to pinpoint exactly when my macramé crush first started to develop, but I do have fond childhood memories of making thousands of friendship bracelets so I guess I could start there. Fast-forward to the age of social media, and together with my obsession with all things handmade, I started to rediscover the art of macramé online and soon got the sense that a huge revival was on its way.
You only have to throw the words “macramé wedding” into any search engine and the web is full of amazing makes and inspiration. The macramé wedding trend hit Australia in a big way in 2016 and the rustic boho vibe was fast appearing everywhere. I took my inspiration from their rustic outdoor woodland settings, vivid oversized flowers and the minimalist boho beach weddings all framed with some amazingly detailed backdrops and accessories – and used this as the basis for this shoot.
Hours and hours were spent knotting and unknotting until the backdrop and accessories for this styled shoot were complete, and so the next step for me was to team up with some extremely talented ladies who were already carving out fantastic careers in the wedding industry, to pull everything together.
I was lucky enough to be surrounded by some supportive and inspiring ladies, who after only one conversation, were as excited about the shoot as I was and immediately the beginnings of a styled photo shoot were born.
The talented Robyn at Bobtale Photography captured the shoot. She is a reportage style photographer who loves nothing more than sharing a wedding day ‘tale’ through the moments she captures. With a keen eye for even the smallest elements of the setup, she immediately sprang into action capturing the most exquisitely, beautiful detailed shots.
Love & Lace is a bespoke wedding styling company that also has an extensive range of vintage china and prop hire collection. Following my ‘woodland boho’ brief, Emma from Love & Lace, provided a variety of props and decorations to complement the overall style of the shoot and for more detailed focus shots. Vintage suitcases were used to create height for a focal floral display alongside some vintage books and brass candlesticks. She opted for grey tapered candlesticks to complement the deepness of the flowers in the brass vase. Rustic ladders were used for more detailed shots of single stems in vintage bottles and stone ink pots. A small styled display with the ladders, an apple crate and a vintage suitcase was also created and allowed Emma to add in more details to shots. One of Emma’s chairs from her collection was accessorised with Lucy’s beautiful macramé chair back and White & Wood’s wooden bride sign.
August 18th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
If you’re a fan of the great outdoors, then we think you’re going to fall head over heels for today’s styled shoot, which bundles together all those whimsical rustic vibes with an inspired boho bridal look and the natural setting of the classic (and increasingly popular) tipi.
Located within the grounds of an organic farm and set in ancient woodlands, This Green Moon is a relatively new wedding venue on the outskirts of Leeds and, we think, an eco-bride and groom’s dream. And this editorial shoot, led by Claire Amelia of Leeds-based boutique The Bridal Emporium, delightfully captures the beauty of this magical setting. We’re talking secret hideaways, twinkling fairy lights and a stunning floral chandelier.
There are all sorts of gorgeousness to pore over – where to begin? The cake is pared back yet so elegant and eye catching; the perfect fit for the all-natural styling of the shoot. Then there’s the table settings – again, very understated but this time, with pops of blazing orange that work beautifully with the amber tones of the tipi itself.
We’re also especially taken by the fabulous bouquets, which look like they’ve just been freshly picked from the surrounding woodland, offering up a wild and carefree vibe in keeping with the shoot’s bohemian theme.
As for the bridal looks showcased by the three models – all are effortlessly chic and stylish, with long flowing unstructured gowns adorned with pretty detailing, paired beautifully with undone hairstyles and a natural makeup palette.
We’ll now pass the blog over to Claire Amelia to share with us all the lovely details about this woodland shoot and this stunning new venue.
With images by PJ Phillips Photography
claire amelia says: The idea behind our rustic styled shoot was to express lots of bohemian, relaxed vibes and to showcase the indoor and outdoor backdrop of the tipi, which is surrounded by woodlands. The decor, flowers and styling injected a pop of colour that contrasted beautifully with our models’ soft pastel dresses.
This Green Moon, set in the grounds of Swillington Organic Farm, only recently set itself up as a wedding venue, and it’s not to be missed for those in the vicinity of Leeds who are seeking an outdoor wedding, with bohemian vibes. They work alongside Yorkshire-based Totally Tipi to create the easiest wedding set-up for brides and grooms-to-be. We wanted to really show off this new venue with our editorial-style photo shoot.
We used a mix of relaxed, on-trend and fashionable flowers, decorations and styling. All the flowers, supplied by The Flower Shop Ossett, were specially designed to suit the colouring of the tipi, with rustic tables and chairs also complementing the shots we took outside.
As for the hair and makeup, crafted by Catherine Elizabeth Hair and Makeup Artistry, we decided on free-flowing locks with a natural beauty palette.
February 2nd, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
For today’s real wedding, we’re escaping to the serene and picture-perfect backdrop of the National Wildflower Centre for Hannah and Leon’s special day.
After seven years together, the couple said ‘I do’ at Runcorn Town Hall before celebrating with family and friends in the unconventional Wildflower Centre, set in the 35 acre Victorian Court Hey Park, for a wedding with a boho twist.
There are so many wonderful and heartfelt touches to this wedding – from the couple’s ‘posh’ picnic and specially crafted cocktails, to their handmade decorations and blessings in the pretty surroundings of a meadow.
With images by Hayley Blackledge Photography
hannah says: We got engaged on our first real Christmas living together. We had opened all our gifts and Leon said he had forgotten one, so he went to get it while I opened my last gift. I turned around and there he was on one knee. He did the traditional full name and full question – it was perfect. My last gift was a Westlife album of all “our songs” from when we first started going out as kids. On the back, he had written me a full proposal that I could keep forever.
We were married on 30th July 2016, exactly one week after our seven-year anniversary. Leon is a teacher so we wanted the wedding to take place while he was off school, which meant this date was perfect.
We had two separate venues for our wedding day. The first was Runcorn Town Hall for the ceremony, and the reception was hosted at the National Wildflower Centre in Liverpool. The first time we visited, we walked through the wildflowers, explored the park and sat by the pond with my parents and sister, and we fell in love with the place. I noticed a tiny poster offering venue hire for events and we never looked back once we were given the price. Our parents were married in Runcorn Town Hall so it held a lot of sentimental value for us. Plus, it’s very beautiful.
We didn’t aim to have a theme, but ended up with a laid-back posh picnic – quite a mix! We wanted to create a beautiful space and that meant the right decorations rather than one set theme or colour.
The colour theme grew over time and became much more relaxed the closer we got to the big day. We started with navy (Leon’s suit), white (my dress) and peach (bridesmaid dresses). Over time we added gold, greens, wood tones, pinks and other pastel colours in the same shade. It looked great!
When it came to my outfit, I didn’t want to look like the “classic bride” and wanted something a touch more vintage and boho. There was one store on Bold Street in Liverpool, Cherry Blossom Boutique, which I tried to call into at least three times. Every time I called over, I’d mistimed it. I managed to make it along one afternoon though and found my dress. I tried two dresses on and then there it was: my Gino Cerruti. The full-length gown had an illusion neckline, a waist synching band and low back, and was covered in hoops of clear beads. I paired my dress with chunky heeled T-bar New Look shoes and a handmade veil from my nan. I then swapped my heels for white flats for most of the day.
Leon wore a navy three-piece suit, with a waistcoat of a different texture from Next. He teamed this with a white shirt with handmade Marvel Spiderman cufflinks and socks, and a pink tie from Burton, with a pink pocket square. To complete his ensemble, he wore brown brogues from Tesco and a squirrel silver tiepin.
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July 13th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
There’s no better way to lift your spirits at this mid-week point than by sharing this absolutely delicious real wedding with you.
Keen to make their wedding day a reflection of their personalities, today’s bride and groom planned a traditional church wedding followed by a relaxed tipi reception at the bride’s parents’ house.
We adore both the rustic and bohemian touches, particularly the fashion-forward attire worn by the happy couple as well as the bridesmaids and groomsmen. Pushing the style stakes sky-high guys!
Images by Photogenick Photography.
emily says: We got engaged in September 2015. Kingsley convinced me to take the dog for a walk with him at dusk. We arrived at a spot in the woods above our house which overlooks the whole village. Kingsley had laid out candles in jars but I still didn’t cotton on as to what was happening until he got down on one knee – then there were lots of tears!
We set the date for 21st May 2016. Kingsley plays professional football and his off season is May to June so a spring wedding was a no-brainer for us. I love all the wild flowers and blossom around that time of year too so I knew it would make a beautiful setting.
Our wedding ceremony took place at our small local church, which is surrounded by strawberry fields, in Ryther, North Yorkshire. It is just down the road from my parents’ house which is where we had the reception. We hired three big Papakata tipis and had them on the land around the back of my mum and dad’s farmhouse. We wanted a low key and relaxed day and for everyone to feel welcome at our family home.
We had a whole medley of themes for the day – rustic, festival, bohemian. My bridal look was very bohemian to reflect my everyday style. Kingsley and the groomsmen had a rustic look as they wore tweed, though the relaxed the look a bit by wearing skinny jeans, which was very them.
We didn’t have a colour scheme as such, it was just very relaxed so anything went. Everything in the tipi was very rustic coloured and natural. My bridesmaids however were in red watercolour poppy dresses, which a lot of people said was a bold choice, but I wanted them to look kick ass and to really make an impact.
My mum made by wedding dress by hand. She’s a very talented seamstress in her past time and I felt honoured to have her sew for me. I designed the whole thing by sketch and she brought it to life. We bought Italian lace from Soho for the sleeves and a piece of vintage lace from a local car boot for the lace insert in the front of my V-neck and used the rest to make a vintage dolly bag for my lippy!
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