Charlotte Balbier

lilac & lilies. a super stylish wedding at the leeds club – rachel & tom

October 28th, 2016 | Julia Braime

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When we first set eyes on today’s real wedding we were totally blown away by the bride’s cool and individual style, perfectly showcasing how to make your big day attire your own.

Wearing an insanely beautiful lilac, bias-cut silk dress, Rachel exudes Hollywood glamour by the bucket load, completing her look with a sparking birdcage veil headpiece and shower style bouquet. We love!

As the couple’s stylish choice of venue didn’t have a marriage license, Rachel and Tom made things legal with a ceremony at Leeds Town Hall a few days previous, and yes, they looked flippin’ gorgeous for that bit too!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Mark Newton Photography.

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rachel says: We got engaged on 29th February 2012, at the Bier Keller in Leeds. We’d randomly gone there for a drink after. After a discussion about wedding and such things, I decided to ask Tom to marry me, we had been together for five years after all. He said yes and we both got quite emotional. I was lucky enough to inherit my grandmother’s engagement ring so we didn’t have to buy one.

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We had our legal ceremony at Leeds Town Hall on 18th May 2015, as unfortunately the venue we wanted to have our wedding at didn’t have a licence to marry us there. We then had a blessing at The Leeds Club on 29th May, as part of our wedding celebrations. I always remember walking past the venue as a child and seeing the business men in the wing back chairs and being really fascinated as to what was inside.

We chose lilac and sage green for the wedding scheme, as we wanted colours that would complement the venue and that also matched my dress.

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I was lucky enough to have two wedding dresses as we had the two ceremonies. For the town hall I wore head to toe Vivienne Westwood. For the blessing, I was fortunate enough to have a bespoke dress from the amazing Glory Days, in York. My dress was based on 1940’s Hollywood glamour and the dresses worn by Joan Crawford. It was lilac bias cut silk, with an open back and fishtail train. It was the best dress ever.

Tom wore a suit from River Island for the town hall and then a three-piece 60’s style, royal blue suit from Topman for the blessing.

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Both my bridesmaids have very different styles, so I asked them to wear their favourite dresses. Jules made her own 1940’s style cocktail dress and Suzanne wore a floor-length maxi dress from Seraphina.

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gorgeous grandeur. pops of copper for a wedding at left bank leeds – courtney & vicky

September 1st, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (25)

There are several elements to today’s real wedding that evoke the word “wow”.

The fabulously planned surprise proposal for one (excellent work Courtney), not to mention the a-maz-ing reception venue, and then the fact that the couple managed to get one of their favourite bands to travel all the way from California to play at their wedding. Impressed? Us too!

Now let’s start by hearing that proposal story…

With images by Yolande De Vries Photography.

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (52)

courtney says: I proposed to Vicky at Cottage Road Cinema in Leeds on 4th May 2014. Cottage Rd Cinema was one of the places we went to on our first dates and is only a two minute walk from our house.

On the day of the proposal Vicky had planned to meet a group of friends in Headingley for lunch and a few drinks as a belated birthday celebration. I had suggested the two of us go to a student short film festival at Cottage Road Cinema before lunch and told her I had pre booked tickets. When we got to the cinema we were given a glass of prosecco each (we were told it was complimentary with ticket as part of the student film festival). When we got in the previews were already on and we stumbled to a few seats in the back.

When the first “short film” came on it was set to the song Skinnybones by Sea of Bees, which always reminds us of when we first got together. So instantly Vicky knew I was up to something but had no idea it was more than just a film. Part way through the very short film (it was probably only about 20 seconds of footage) text appeared that said, Victoria Hayhurst I adore you. Let’s be together forever? I then pulled out the ring I had designed as a cork popped from a bottle of bubbly, the lights went up and all our friends jumped up and yelled surprise! Vicky burst into tears, when she saw everyone and then again when she saw the ring and realised what was going on. We all had more prosecco, chatted and then walked to the restaurant we were all booked into for lunch and had a lovely day.

Exactly a year later Vicky surprised me on a walk through the woods by giving me my engagement ring at a spot that means a lot to us.

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (68)

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (77)

We got married on 27th June 2015, at Leeds Town Hall because I love the building and Leeds is where we met. The reception was held at Left Bank Leeds which is an amazing Grade II* listed former church building near to where Vicky lived as a student and where I rented when I first moved to Leeds. Before we found the venue I had wanted a grand but dilapidated building, with prosecco and exquisite canapés being served and a jazz band playing. Left Bank Leeds wasn’t dilapidated but still had the sense of grandeur I desired.

Our colour scheme was black, white, grey and navy with accents of copper. I chose these because they’re my favourite colours (I don’t really do colour!). I didn’t set a dress code but asked that everyone wore black, white, grey or navy. Everyone looks good in those colours and copper was a colour of the moment and added a bit of contrast for an extra pop.

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (100)

In terms of my wedding attire, I made my own skirt and drafted the pattern myself. It was a full length, high waited skirt with wide waste band, concealed back zip and side pockets (for my phone) in a French navy silk from Joel & Son Fabrics in London. I chose the fabric with my best friends Vicky, Franny and Alexa. I wore the skirt with a customised white sleeveless top that I bought at Cos when I was in Berlin with Franny and Alexa.

Vicky wore French navy wide legged trousers from Crombie and a white asymmetrical sleeveless top by Vivienne Westwood.

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city chic. a retro styled bridal shoot in manchester

August 31st, 2016 | Rachel Parry

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (12)

Today on the blog we have a little something for you urban brides out there.

In response to brides-to-be commenting that while there is plenty of inspiration for couples marrying in the countryside but there isn’t so much for those planning city centre celebrations, Lancaster-based wedding photographer Arusha set about creating a retro styled bridal shoot set against bold Manchester backgrounds.

The result is a strong collection of edgy images that show a wedding in a built-up area can be just as striking as those in rolling countryside, with brick, graffiti and even metal shutters providing standout photo opportunities.

To explain more about the looks created and areas visited, we’ll hand over the blog to the lady who captured all the action…

With images by Arusha’s Images Photography.

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (55)

arusha says: I spent many years living and working in Manchester, and the city was the inspiration for this shoot. I love the old backstreets there, the mix of modern apartments, and old alleyways. I think that the bright statement graffiti of the Northern Quarter brings so much life to the city. By contrast I also wanted to include a more modern background, and Salford Quays and The Lowry are perfect for that, with all the glass, metal and clean lines.

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (7)

Working as part of a two-man team with hair stylist and makeup artist Hannah Wells, of Beau Tink Studio, my aim for the shoot was to inspire my urban brides to get creative, and to show some different bridal looks and locations in the city.

I photograph a whole range of weddings, and in that process I have found that city and retro brides-to-be have often commented that they feel there is a stronger focus on more countryside and boho style weddings when they are looking for inspiration for their day. I love a bohemian country wedding, but I also love bold city weddings, with the strong urban backgrounds that cities provide. I also wanted to show that a little bit of retro and grunge can be stunning on a wedding day.

Urban Styled Bridal Shoot (c) Arusha's Images (48)

I coordinated the styling, choosing to buy as brightly coloured flowers as I could for the bouquet, and tied them with a simple ribbon, which we were able to add rainbow streamer ribbons to as the shoot went on.

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modern glamour. maggie sottero for a black tie wedding in newcastle – jaimie & gemma

August 19th, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Modern Glamorous Wedding at Malmaison (c) Jamie Mcelderry (9)

Today we’re heading North East on the blog to relive chic city wedding down by the Quayside in Newcastle.

Keen for a wedding that reflected them as a family and the city that they love, Jaimie and Gemma planned a glamorous wedding at the Malmaison hotel, complete with a personal ceremony and black tie dress code.

With images by Jamie Mcelderry Wedding Photographer.

A Modern Glamorous Wedding at Malmaison (c) Jamie Mcelderry (1)

gemma says: Jaimie proposed on Christmas day 2014. In January 2014, I gave birth to triplet boys and it was a pretty tough year for us as a family. By Christmas time, it felt as if we could take on anything! Jaimie hid the ring in the tree. He sat me and my daughter down and presented it to us both. Words actually failed him, I was stunned and we relied on my daughter to piece it all together!

We set the date for Monday 20th June 2016. We wanted our wedding to feel relaxed and non-traditional, which is why we chose to have it on a Monday.

A Modern Glamorous Wedding at Malmaison (c) Jamie Mcelderry (16)

Our venue was the Malmaison hotel on Newcastle’s quayside. It was perfect for us as it isn’t used for many weddings, which allowed us to really tailor the day to what we wanted. The decor has a really cool, urban chic vibe to it, which suits our modern taste. To top it all off, it’s in an amazing location overlooking the river.

Our whole ceremony was written with personal touches about us as a couple, but also as a family. We included lighting a unity candle as part of the ceremony and chose songs to feature throughout, including Beyonce and Jessica Glynne. I walked down the aisle to a mix of Disclosure and Sam Smith Latch. All our music was uplifting rather than romantic.

A Modern Glamorous Wedding at Malmaison (c) Jamie Mcelderry (59)

The style of our wedding was modern and glamorous, but in a minimal and informal way. We wanted to share our day with only our closest family and friends and wanted to give them an insight into our family and what is particularly special to us. No frills, no formalities.

I wanted everything to be really crisp, fresh and clean, so just kept to a white colour scheme with a few black touches. The male wedding party wore black tie and my two bridesmaids wore black too.

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city love. mori lee for a sheffield themed wedding at kelham island museum – sian & joe

July 7th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

A Wedding at Kelham Island Museum (c) Elegant & Wild Photography (36)

Today’s real wedding is a celebration not only of love, but also of the city in which the couple first met and still live.

Focussing the décor and details on Sheffield and its heritage, Sian and Joe gave nods to the industry, food and transport that is all iconic to the city, whilst getting some of the area’s top suppliers on board to help deliver their vision.

They certainly did the steel city proud!

With images by Elegant & Wild Photography.

A Wedding at Kelham Island Museum (c) Elegant & Wild Photography (7)

sian says: Joe asked me to marry him on the evening of 22nd July 2015. After a romantic walk in The Peaks, he popped the question at Higger Torr with the sun setting over Hathersage and church bells tolling in the distance. I said yes! Joe had bought my perfect engagement ring from Green and Benz on Division Street, in Sheffield, where we also later bought our wedding rings from.

We were married on 14th May 2016. We chose this date as it was when some of our best friends that are currently travelling the world could make it. Joe is a huge football fan and wanted to avoid any potential clashes with Sheffield United matches or the Euros. I couldn’t believe this was part of the consideration!

A Wedding at Kelham Island Museum (c) Elegant & Wild Photography (42)

For our ceremony we chose to wed at St Marie’s Cathedral in Sheffield. It is a large, beautiful church that is special to my family as my parents were also married there in 1982. The reception was held at Kelham Island Museum, a venue on an area that forms part of Sheffield’s unique makeup. Joe and I have spent many happy times at various different pubs in Kelham Island and feel it’s a vibrant area that is steeped in Sheffield history and we wanted our guests to see this.

A Wedding at Kelham Island Museum (c) Elegant & Wild Photography (60)

Our wedding theme was a celebration of Sheffield as it is the place where we met and have shared many happy times together. It is with doubt our favourite city and we wanted our wedding to show if off. We were also aiming for our day to seem natural while at the same time having a rustic and industrial sense to it.

Our colour scheme was blush pink alongside hessian and rustic/craft browns. We felt these colours complemented one another and fitted in well with the theme.

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roses are red. a romantic wedding in manchester – rebecca & jonathan

June 3rd, 2016 | Rachel Parry

A Romantic Wedding at Manchester Town Hall (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (47)

Where do we start with today’s real wedding? Bride and groom Rebecca and Jonathan worked together on all aspects of their big day to make it as personal and ‘local’ as possible; an aim that was most certainly achieved.

We love all the little details – from the sweet stationery, to the homemade favours and ice cream dessert, not to mention the wedding party’s sophisticated get-up. Looking good guys!

With images by Hayley Baxter Photography.

A Romantic Wedding at Manchester Town Hall (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (7)

rebecca says: We got engaged in my mum’s kitchen on our four year anniversary. To put it into context, we were saving for our first house so we both moved back in with our parents to save money for a mortgage. As a result we thought we’d just have a meal in for our anniversary but it ended up being much more than just a meal.

Jon got the jewellery store, which was Geralds based in Knutsford, to wrap the ring up in a big box with a box of chocolates so that I wouldn’t suspect anything, which worked! I even shook the box trying to guess what it was. After washing up Jon said it was time for presents so I opened up the big box to find a box of chocolates and a small jewellery box, which I thought were earrings. I was so surprised that I couldn’t stop laughing, all whilst Jon was on one knee waiting for a response. I obviously said yes and we cracked open some champagne whilst I called all our friends and family to tell them the good news. It was the perfect proposal as it was a complete surprise, and just proved how well Jon knew me.

A Romantic Wedding at Manchester Town Hall (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (11)

We set the date for 5th September 2015 because we bought our house in 2013 so we needed plenty of time to save for the wedding. I also love the number 5 and wanted it to be in September as the weather is usually good (which it was).

We got married at St Vincent de Paul Church in Altrincham, where I had my first holy communion and my confirmation so it is filled with lots of happy memories. As a couple we go there every year on Christmas Eve so it was great to get the opportunity to marry there. Our reception was held at Manchester Town Hall.

A Romantic Wedding at Manchester Town Hall (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (25) - Copy

We didn’t really have a theme but we are both very Manchester proud and wanted our wedding to be really personal so we picked everything for the wedding together that we love. The two wedding buses chosen to take guests from the church to the reception, used to do routes in Kent and a route in Yorkshire where our parents are from. The cocktails on arrival were ‘his’ and ‘hers’ made from Bermudian rum that my dad and his wife brought over for us as I was born in Bermuda and my dad currently lives there. We also gave miniature versions of the rum as a keepsake to our guests. All of the food at the wedding was locally sourced including the dessert, which was provided by a local ice cream maker.

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