November 29th, 2017 | Julia Braime
If you follow us over on our busy Instagram feed, you’ll know that we’ve been in Southern Iceland as guests of the superb Hotel Ranga for the past few days, chasing the sun and spotting the Northern Lights. Full blog service resumes this evening and we’re bringing you a real wedding that’s as pretty as it is personal (and more on our trip later!).
Opting for a traditional church ceremony and a reception at the stunning Delamere Manor in Cheshire, Steph and Darren chose to keep the focus firmly on them as a couple, deciding against a set wedding theme and instead including meaningful personal touches along the way. One of our favourite being the CD favours – who doesn’t love a good compilation?
We’re also totally in love with Steph’s b-e-a-utiful big day look, the picture of elegance in her lace detailed dress, pink Jimmy Choos and gorgeous natural bridal makeup. We also have to give kudos to Darren, who looks super dapper in his navy suit, demonstrating that’s it’s not just the bride who can bring style to a wedding. Darren is doing it for the grooms!
With images by Kate McCarthy Photography.
steph says: We got engaged in Seville. It was part of a trip to Spain for my 30th birthday. The day started extremely gloomy and wet so we decided to head for a long lunch. We had bellies full of paella and enjoyed our favourite white wine; Marques de Riscal. We went back to the hotel to check into our room to discover our cases had been misplaced. Little did I know the ring was inside the case! After a couple of frantic conversations Darren had with reception our luggage came up to the room and Darren hid the ring box in his back pocket. During a walk of the city, we approached “The Fountain of Love” and began posing for pictures, then Darren got down on one knee – I was speechless!
Our wedding was on Saturday 2nd September 2017. We didn’t have a specific date in mind but the more we thought about it, September was a month we both loved.
We got married at St Bartholomew’s Church in Wilmslow, followed by a reception at Delamere Manor, Cuddington. The church is in my hometown and so this was non-negotiable. For the reception, we wanted a venue none of our friends had got married at and somewhere that screamed Darren and Steph. When we viewed Delamere Manor we fell in love and knew it was the place for us.
We didn’t have a set theme for the wedding, we just wanted a day that would reflect us.
Our colour scheme was silver, and pastel colours such as pink, lavender and baby blue.
I wore a Justin Alexander dress from Puure Bridal in Lymm. I also had a cathedral-length veil (my mum’s request). Puure was the last shop we went to and the place I got my dress. Angie there was so helpful from start to finish. She put me in something I wouldn’t dream of picking, but after a couple of tweaks it really was the perfect dress for the day. My shoes were Lucy from Jimmy Choo, and something I have worn again since.
Georgina Wild did the bridal party’s hair and Maxine Smith did makeup. Georgina is a good friend, and unbelievable hairdresser. She kept me cool, calm and collected during the morning and was versatile with both short and long hair for me, my sister and mum. Maxine was also a fantastic addition to the morning of the wedding – and a great, natural make-up artist.
November 22nd, 2017 | Aislinn Thompson
Downton Abbey may no longer keep us warm on a Sunday night, but that doesn’t mean we’ve stopped daydreaming about slipping into one of Lady Mary’s elegant gowns and gliding down the wide staircase to be greeted at the bottom by an eligible suitor and served an endless feast of delectable delights from silver platters. So, when we read the brief for a ‘High Society & Countryside Pursuits’ styled shoot, we had no trouble at all finding ourselves right there in the moment
Coordinated by accessory designer Heidi Reid of Glorious Tiaras, who won The Wedding Industry Awards Best Bridal Accessory Designer in the North West award in 2016 and 2017, and who supplied the hair accessories for the shoot, enjoy a little escapism as we take you back to the turn of the 20th century and to one of the most beautiful, privately owned country homes in Cheshire.
With images by Zapimage.
heidi says: Our working title for this shoot was ‘High Society & Countryside Pursuits’ luxe bridal inspiration. The history of the shoot’s venue, Adlington Hall, as a hunting lodge frequented by the region’s landed gentry inspired us to plan a shoot that had all the luxe elements you would imagine finding at a society dinner at Adlington Hall at the turn of the 20th century. I wanted the styling to reflect the historic location and picked suppliers I felt had the vision and creativity to understand the brief and the skill to bring that vision to life.
I’ve lived just ten minutes away from Adlington Hall for 20 years and, until recently, had never visited. My first trip to the country house and its gardens blew me away! I couldn’t believe that this hidden gem wasn’t as well-known as other Cheshire stately homes, with its intriguing history (Handel is rumoured to have stayed here and played the 17th century organ in the main hall), its beautiful formal and wild gardens, unique features such as an imposing mythological mural that takes up a full wall, huge marble fireplaces and a panelled ceiling featuring the Coats of Arms of other prominent Cheshire families. I knew that Adlington Hall was licensed for weddings and started to speak to other local wedding suppliers who I knew could use their talents and enthusiasm to develop a styled wedding shoot with me.
Our aim for this shoot was to showcase Adlington Hall and Hunting Lodge as a unique venue with a rich heritage, whilst offering inspiration to couples wanting to embrace their love of the countryside and the outdoors in a more luxurious, less bohemian way. The rich décor of the interior of Adlington Hall inspired our colour palette of coppers, berries and deep fern-like greens, and featured in everything from the bespoke wedding stationery by Nina Thomas Studio and the Kaye Hannabuss-designed Harris Tweed waistcoat and bow tie, to the bridal make-up by Gemma of Dollface Makeup Studio, the floral arrangements by The Flower House, and our elegant three-tiered wedding cake from For Goodness Cake. Love Lights the Way supplied the beautiful blossom lights.
We wanted to use elements that gave a nod to a turn of the 20th century, Agatha Christie-esque gathering of Cheshire’s landed gentry. To achieve this, we used coloured Edwardian glassware and vintage gold-plated cutlery supplied and styled by Maud and Mabel’s, a show-stopping copper candelabra festooned with a floral arrangement of pheasant feathers, fragrant roses, berry-toned hellebores and plum-coloured peonies to create the feel of a society gathering designed to impress. The feathers, the tweed, gundogs Fern and Elisa, and Secret, the beautiful Welsh Cob, were a must for our high society & countryside pursuits theme, and we absolutely loved involving these adorable animals in our shoot. We couldn’t quite believe what patient, willing models they were! Special thanks must go to Kim Wardle-Payler for bringing her horse and Labrador along for the day.
Working with Helen of 7th Heaven Bridal we chose a luxe Charmeuse silk Justin Alexander gown, with flutter sleeves and a low back that we felt epitomised understated period glamour. Makeup artist Gemma worked to our palette of berries and coppers, opting for a strong lip colour to complement warm copper tones on the bride’s eyes. The hair was styled by Amy at Hushlounge with a deep side parting and elegant waves to give the look of understated glamour a lá 1940’s movie stars, like Ava Gardner.
November 16th, 2017 | Aislinn Thompson
Yes, we have a dress crush. Today’s bride Arlene wanted to look like a Bond girl on her big day and we reckon she absolutely nailed it in a gorgeous, backless Rosa Clará number with a graceful silhouette and divine vintage detailing on the shoulders and down the back. We also have garden envy, because the grounds at today’s venue, Arley Hall, would give any National Trust property a run for its money: deep borders bursting with colour and texture are juxtaposed with crisp topiary and rich red brickwork. The photographs offer up a visual feast.
In a colour scheme of navy and dusky pink, Arlene and Simon went for an elegant, regal feel with a touch of femininity to complement the glorious Elizabethan-style Victorian country house. With its opulent interiors, who could fail to feel a little bit Bond-esque?
With images by Cris Matthews Photography.
arlene says: Simon proposed to me at home on August bank holiday in 2015, after more than six years together with bubbles, Bob Marley playing and a display of photographs of us on our fabulous holidays. We then went to Gaucho in Manchester for steak dinner and he had organised a surprise party with our close friends at Epernay. The next day I was whisked off to Moddershall Oaks for an overnight spa break.
We got married on Saturday 29th July 2017. We wanted a summer day and a weekend, as we have a lot of teacher friends. My dad flew over from Panama to walk me down the aisle and the date also worked well for my 11-year-old stepsister and her school holidays in Panama.
Our chosen venue was Arley Hall & Gardens, Cheshire. We had our ceremony in the drawing room, the wedding breakfast in the gallery and the reception at Olympia Barn on site. I visited the venue one afternoon with some friends, as it’s open to visitors. I fell in love instantly – butterflies! Simon loved it as much as I did. Arlene driving up Arley Road to marry at Arley Hall – it was meant to be!
We also liked the venue as it was local and had a good mix of rooms to use and stunning gardens. Plus, I liked the idea of having a more informal area for the evening guests to party.
I wanted a fairly simple, elegant, classy style for the day. The venue is so opulent that I didn’t want to take away from/spoil its beauty. We would definitely recommend the venue: as well as it being utterly gorgeous, the staff were professional and friendly and we felt reassured the day would run smoothly.
My gown was from Knutsford Wedding Gallery. I am quite particular with my style and wanted a unique dress. After searching bridal websites and magazines, I decided I liked Rosa Clará gowns and booked an appointment as I knew they were stocked there. I was very keen on a backless, slinky dress. My spec was I wanted to look and feel like a Bond girl! When I tried it on first I knew it was the one, but that didn’t stop me from trying on 29 more dresses. Milking the moment!
My hair and makeup artist was Make-up By Sophie, based in Oldham. She followed my Bond girl spec –my bridesmaids and I felt very glam.
October 16th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
We’re now nearing the end of our autumn season of Luxury Wedding Fairs across the north of the country (though five still remain, check them out here!) and we have to hand it to the suppliers that have exhibited with us – they rock!
Keen to introduce brides-to-be the very best talent in the north, we always encourage our exhibitors to pull out all the stops on their stands to showcase their talents and inspire visiting couples – it’s amazing what’s possible through hard work, skills and creativity!
We were therefore thrilled to hear that a group of suppliers at our debut Stock Farm wedding fair in September, had seized the opportunity to style up a shoot onsite at this fabulous Cheshire venue, which really made the most of their incredible efforts.
Prepare for some crazily cool dresses, a to-die-for ceremony backdrop and delectable details as we let Emmylou Kelly, owner of Manchester-based photography and styling company Chiascuro, take over the blog to tell how she and the team achieved these truly stunning images
Diary Date: Our next Pop Up Wedding Festival Fair at Stock Farm takes place on Sunday 8th April 2018! We’ll see you there then!
With images by Chiascuro.
emmylou says: As Stock Farm is a brand-new wedding venue, the team involved in the shoot were all eager to work in partnership with the venue on future weddings.
The Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Fair presented an ideal opportunity to arrange a styled shoot (at the end of the event as the day was so busy!) as we would all be in the same place at the same time and so could collaborate on a joint project.
When arranging such shoots, I like to ask suppliers to showcase their best pieces or to bring/create something that is true to their company and their own style which allows the shoot to look versatile, whilst still flowing as a collective.
The shoot was based around the dresses supplied by Wilderness Bride and Ghost Orchid Bride, which were a mix of ultra-stylish and discreetly modern designs. Our model, Stephanie, who is also owner of Wilderness Bride, had a cool rock vibe going on, so we went with this look for the styling. We then mixed things up a little with leather jackets and veils to give the look an alternative vibe.
Having the beautiful and stylish flowers from Sassflower to work with made it easy to create a look that will be the envy of 2018 and 2019 brides. I tried to envision what Stock Farm’s future brides would choose for the wedding. A little bit of country rock chic?
The venue is situated next to a wheat field which couples are able to use for photos. Even though the field had been harvested, I knew it would be a beautiful backdrop to photos and would show off the venue’s beautiful farming landscapes and surroundings. The backdrop also complemented Sassflowers’ stunning ceremony backdrop.
The ceremony arch was dressed with pampas grass, nude Sahara roses, white gladioli, vanda orchids, chrysanthemums, acacia and eucalyptus spray as well as spray roses. The bouquet complemented the backdrop and was made up of vanda orchids, quick sand carnations, astrantia, grasses, spray roses, scabiosa and black seedheads.
Overall the shoot went really well and we were delighted with the results! It had been raining on and off all day but the Cheshire sun came out for us at 4pm and gave us that beautiful golden light that I love so much. We utilised various spots around the farm as the wedding fair was still taking place so we were able to showcase different looks, themes and styles as the venue offers so much will appeal to so many different types of brides.
With big thanks to Brides Up North for bringing us all together!
October 12th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
The wonderful Owen House wedding barn in Cheshire provides the delightful backdrop to today’s beautiful nuptials between Fiona and James, who tied the knot back in May.
With a dusty pastel palette, a classic red double decker bus and a floral bouquet that made the mother-of-the bride shed a tear or two – the couple’s rustic themed day has got us falling head over heels for an effortlessly chic barn wedding.
What we love best though is how the couple ‘tell their story’ through all their personal touches, from their wedding cake to their table names – and even Fiona’s special gift to James on their big day. It comes as no surprise to us that this is Fiona’s top tip for other brides-to-be, too!
With images by Paul Joseph Photography.
fiona says: We got engaged while we were living in London. James had secretly booked one of the treehouses at Chewton Glen on the south coast as a surprise getaway. He had intended to propose whilst we were there, but he got himself a little too excited so he popped the question in our bedroom whilst we were packing! He didn’t use many words, but the gestures were all there and he was down on one knee with a ring! I said yes – after asking whether he was sure!
We got married on Friday 19th May 2017. When we started looking for venues, we were set on a Saturday in the summer of 2017. However, we fell in love with Owen House and didn’t want to have to wait until 2018 to get married there, so chose a date entirely based on their availability. Having a Friday actually ended up quite useful, as we were able to set up on the Thursday afternoon. The venue is charming yet cheeky, elegant yet relaxed. The ceremony room with its lovingly carved wooden benches and twinkle lights has a real rustic beauty. I cried when we first saw it!
Vanessa, Dan and the rest of the family have created something truly special at Owen House. They work tirelessly to make sure your day runs like clockwork, and yet they make it look effortless. Nothing is ever too much trouble, no question is too silly.
Family and friends are really important to us, and we are fortunate to be surrounded by a lot of amazing people. We wanted to create a day that was personal and relaxed, without losing the gravity of the commitment we were making to each other.
We wanted quite a muted palette which lent itself to the rustic nature of the barn. We opted for pale pinks and dusty blues to create a relaxed romantic feel.
Although James and I have settled in Manchester, I am a Surrey girl. Since we were getting married in Cheshire, I wanted to get my dress from near my parent’s. I went to Chobham Bride in Chobham, Surrey, where I met the lovely Louise who spent a lot of time with me and helped me find the perfect fit. I was adamant that I didn’t want a strapless fishtail, but that’s exactly what I fell for in the end.
The dress I chose was from the Pronovias White One collection. The original dress had a high neck, which I had peeled back by Louise’s seamstress, Lucy, to reveal a sweetheart neckline. I then had an off the shoulder lace bolero made, to wear over the top. It was gorgeous, and was a dream to wear on the day.
September 28th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
For some couples, there’s no better setting for their big day than their home. Given that there is space, we can see the attraction – a place that the couple feel comfortable in and know inside out, the ability to style the wedding exactly as they wish and the opportunity to party late into the night. What’s not to love?
Favouring an at home for these very reasons, today’s real wedding couple Katie and Jordan planned a traditional church ceremony followed by a marquee wedding at their house in Cuddington.
Now people, don’t let anyone ever tell you a wedding marquee can’t be glamorous because Katie and Jordan, with the help of some talented suppliers, absolutely aced the styling. They transformed the plain white canvass into a luxurious setting complete with opulent blooms, chic mirrored décor and gorgeous ghost style chairs.
We also have to say that we’re totally in love with Katie’s big day look; from that super-pretty Ian Stuart gown to her pale blue M&S shoes – pure top-to-toe perfection!
With images by Jess Yarwood Photography.
katie says: We got engaged in June 2015 while on our first holiday as a family after having our son, Jenson. We were in Portugal and went to one of our favourite restaurants, Piri Piri. I was already suspicious as family were acting strange! Jordan had picked the ring himself and it was perfect fit – everything, we celebrated with champagne!
We set the date for Saturday 8th July 2017. Our ceremony was at St John’s church, Norley, followed by marquee reception at our home in Cuddington.
We both wanted a marquee for the reception as we felt it would be more personal would give us control over everything. It also meant that we could carry on partying as long as we wanted, and could invite as many as we wanted!
Jordan and I had attend a lot of marquee weddings and so we wanted to make sure that ours stood out. We wanted it to look classy, glam and luxurious and so we picked a white, grey and silver colour scheme.
My wedding dress Paradis was by designer Ian Stuart. I got it from Maria Modes in Macclesfield. After trying on numerous dresses in numerous shops this dress just stood out as it was completely different to all the others!
I picked a pair of blue shoes from Marks & Spencer. I wanted to be able to wear them again after the wedding – which I have done many times already!
Jordan wore blue suit with a grey tweed waistcoat, silver tie and tan shoes, all from Maria Modes’ menswear department. The groomsmen had suits to match and Jenson also wore a matching suit to his daddy.
On the day of the wedding we travelled to church in a white Rolls Royce Ghost and matching white Range Rover from Cheshire Luxury Cars.
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