Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

hessian & lace. maggie sottero for a rustic wedding in the north west – belinda & dan

October 11th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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Fans of relaxed rustic wedding styling prepare to take note, for the décor and details in this afternoon’s celebration are guaranteed to earn a place on your Pinterest board.

From hessian chair ties and cute bunting to natural log slices and twine-wrapped glass jars filled with wonderful wild blooms, Dan and Belinda’s big day has it all.

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

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belinda says: Dan proposed to me in front of Peel Tower on Holcombe Hill, on 15th March 2015. Dan knows that Holcombe Hill is my favourite place so knew it would have meaning for us to get engaged there. He asked my dad’s permission earlier in the day and then suggested we go for a Sunday evening walk. We got to the top of the hill and I started to take some photographs – when I turned around he was down on one knee with the ring in his hand. I cried for about 15 minutes before I remembered to actually say yes!

We set the date of the wedding for 1st April 2016. We had chosen this as our ‘official’ anniversary date of when we first got together (mainly so that Dan would never have an excuse to forget with it also being April Fool’s Day). The wedding fell on our fourth anniversary.

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Our chosen venue was The Fisherman’s Retreat, in Shuttleworth, Lancashire. We wanted a venue where we would be able to see Holcombe Hill, and at The Fisherman’s you have the view of Holcombe Hill right from the spot you have the wedding ceremony so there was never really any other choices on the cards.

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I’d describe the style of our wedding as rustic and natural! We just picked out things we liked the look of really – so lots of brown card, jars with twine, crates, log slices, wooden hearts, etc. This is just our taste in general so seemed the right thing to do!

We didn’t particularly have a colour scheme. We picked a heathery colour for the bridesmaid dresses and Dan’s tie and handkerchief (because I saw the colour on a Dessy swatch and it was the only one I liked) but apart from that we just had all different colours of wild flowers, and then the rustic details in between.

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I wore a Maggie Sottero dress called Cassidy, which I got from The Bridal Lounge, in Accrington. I actually only chose it six weeks before the wedding as I had a total change of heart about the first dress I had chosen from another bridal shop. Lee at the Bridal Lounge turned everything round within the time frame and made sure I had the perfect dress on the day. I teamed my dress with a long veil and wore bright red heels as a surprise for Dan (had to get a little nod to Liverpool FC in somewhere as I had refused it on every other thing he’d suggested!)

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understated elegance. sophia tolli for a vintage wedding at whitworth hall – paul & marie

October 13th, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (34)

We just love the simplicity of today’s real wedding.

It’s not always about the most extravagant decor, the biggest cake or the most flamboyant flowers (though we do adore details) but simply about the love the bride and groom have for one another.

Paul and Marie’s big day was brimming with elegance but without being OTT thanks to a stunning choice of venue, attractive attire and a pretty colour palette.

We are also totally crushing on all the natural outdoor shots, especially the ones with the deer! Super classy!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Paul Liddement Wedding Stories.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (4)

paul says: I proposed to Marie on her birthday while we were staying in a cottage in the Lake District. I gave her a bunch of silly presents and a wax jacket that she really wanted and I’d put an envelope inside the pocket containing a card asking her to marry me. When she opened it the envelope fell out and she didn’t notice it so I had to grab the card quickly and hand it to her once she’d sat down again. She opened the card and I got on one knee.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (10)

Our wedding was on 20th June, 2015. We booked this date as it seemed far enough away at time of booking to be able to get everything done and we thought the weather should be ok at this time of year.

Both our ceremony and reception were held at Whitworth Hall, Spennymoor. We chose the venue for its location, grounds and layout. Also due to the feeling we got when we visited it.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (13)

We didn’t have a cast iron ‘theme’ but we were working from the vintage end of things, not in a way which restricted us, but that merely gave the appearance of wedding continuity. Examples of this could be seen in our table names and seating plan as they used the same text fonts and floral illustrations as on all of our other stationery, but to add a little personal touch we named the tables after locations from the Lord of the Ring books, which we love. We also went for a vintage mute colour scheme. So overall, vintage meets middle earth subtly.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (20)

Marie wore the Leigh dress designed by Sophia Tolli, which she bought from Elizabeth George in Middlesbrough. On the wedding day her hair was done by her sister Stacy and her makeup was done by her sister Dawn. Marie looked beautiful so I think it would be fair to say we would recommend her sisters.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (32)

I wore a conventionally cut grey suit with a white shirt and silver tie. These were hired from Troughear Suit Hire, Durham. The night before the wedding I had a hot towel shave at Guappo Hair Design in Shotton. It was fantastic and helped to relax me – I’d definitely recommend this to other grooms.

The bridesmaids’ dresses were all from Debenhams.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (33)

As a photographer myself, I was very picky as to who I would pick to capture our day. After some time researching, we chose Paul Liddement because of his style and the obvious quality of his work but mostly because of his approach and the fact that we felt comfortable with him.

On the wedding day Paul was relaxed, focused and very well prepared. He managed to take lots of photographs that we were completely unaware of and seemed very good at catching that moment when you are more yourself. He also fitted in with the guests and spent time getting them at ease with him. We were blown away by our wedding images when we received them. We had high expectations based on the quality of our engagement shoot but the wedding photos far exceeded our expectations and managed to put an extra shine on an already magical day.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (35)

Marie arrived at Whitworth Hall buy classic car, along with her maid of honour and bridesmaids who travelled in a separate car, both of which were hired form Classic Wedding Cars, Durham.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (40)

We designed and made all of the wedding stationery ourselves. A time consuming process as we wanted to get it just right and put a lot of thought into it, but it was the right thing to do as we ended up with exactly what we wanted and it made the wedding more personal. We are immensely proud of the results.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (46)

In terms of flowers, Marie and her bridesmaids had vintage style bouquets and we had corsages for the mothers, female grandparents and the guests who did readings. The groom, best man, ushers, fathers, grandfather and all the male partners of the bridal party then had matching button holes. All were supplied by Elvet Flowers, Durham.

For decoration, we had another small arrangement of flowers on the top table also supplied by Elvet Flowers, Durham. We also had a miniature handmade birdcage made from pages of a book, which was positioned in the middle of the top table. This was made by a friend of ours, Gillian.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (68)

All the other tables at the reception had a vintage bird cage on them, which were put together by Marie and her sister Dawn (although myself and my brother-in-law Jona did put one together each and I think these were the best!) We purchased the materials from a variety of sources including Country Baskets, Home Bargains and eBay.

We handmade all of our favours; historically accurate 13th Century medieval coins for the men and angel charms for the ladies.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (71)

Our wedding cake was a three tiered spice cake. It had a very subtle vintage rose colour icing, with a lace like pattern piped down one side (as if a doily had been draped down on side). There was also an arrangement of icing sugar flowers on the third tier. The cake was made locally by a lady called Vicky who makes them more as a hobby than a business.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (73)

As a special treat we also had a sweetie table, which we put together ourselves. The sweets were bought at B&M and Home Bargains, which is where we also got the giant martini/wine glasses and other glass bowls from that held the sweets.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (54)

To fill the lull period after the meal (while the venue staff rearranged the room for the evening do) we arranged for the medieval re-enactment group The Dawn of Chivalry, of which I’m a member, to put on a combat display for our guests in the venue’s grounds. We chose this as it was something a bit different & again made the wedding more personal to us. For the evening do we had the venue supplied disco, during which my brother-in-law managed to take on a guest DJ spot much to everyone’s (apart from the actual DJ’s) amusement.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (63)

Following our wedding we would definitely recommend Whitworth Hall to others. The venue was brilliant, they were very accommodating and great on the day! The venue has plenty of space for people to mill around and relax and it is possible to find a quiet corner if you need some space providing you are not either the bride or groom, in which case you won’t have time to catch your thoughts! It lends itself very well to weddings as the ceremony room is very tasteful and has plenty of scope for some lovely photo locations without ever having to go too far from your guests.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (77)

Looking back, my favourite part of the day was the moment I first saw my wife-to-be in her dress. I fell in love all over again and then couldn’t see anyone but her.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (79)

We have not yet been on our honeymoon yet as we are planning to go to New Zealand (see Lord of the Rings sneaking in again) and it is currently winter there.

A Natural Wedding in the North East (c) Paul Liddement Wedding Stories (83)

Our top tip for other Brides (and grooms) Up North would be to set a realistic budget then be honest with yourself and really set an actually realistic budget. Look at what you can actually afford and what you really feel is absolutely important. This will help you strip away a lot of the gimmicky, frivolous I wants.

We paid for the majority of the wedding ourselves by saving up and doing over time at work, but we also had some very generous gifts from family members. All in all it’s a party, so look at it as such – people are there for you and not what is on the tables or festooned around the room.

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great gatsby glamour. a 1920’s themed wedding in the north west – rosalind & michael

June 24th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (39)

Today’s bride took inspiration from iconic film The Great Gatsby when it came to styling her wedding day – and boy did she hit the nail on the head!

Rosalind pieced together her vintage vision bit by bit, incorporating a beaded wedding dress, fringe detailed bridesmaid gowns, posh transport and a feather-topped cake along the way for a fabulous 1920’s style big day.

Ladies, prepare to be dazzled!

With images by Stanbury Photography.

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rosalind says: Michael proposed to me on Christmas Eve 2012. It was perfect, we were at home with our little boy Jacob when Mike told me there was a present hanging on the Christmas tree. When I looked closer there was a small black box amongst the baubles and when I turned round he was on one knee.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (9)

We were married in front of all our family andfriends at Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception in Haigh on 11th April 2015. This is my family parish so it was very special for us to be married in this church and by Fr Kevin.

We chose Ashfield House for our reception venue as it has such lovely features and grounds. The distance from the church to the venue was perfect. When we arranged our first appointment all the staff were so friendly and helpful we knew this was the venue for us. Throughout the whole experience the staff were brilliant, none of our requests were too much trouble, plus the food was delicious too!

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (10)

Our theme was 1920’s, I love everything about this era from the hair and makeup to the clothes and styling. When I showed Mike some the ideas I had found on Pinterest he agreed that this was the theme for us.

In terms of the colour scheme, our bridesmaids were dressed in a light pink/peach colour and the flowers were a range of pink, peach, lilac and a hint of cream. We introduced silver into the stationery too.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (12)

For my wedding dress I chose Lauren by Eliza Jane Howell. It’s a 1920’s vintage inspired beaded dress with silver detail. I purchased it from Knutsford Wedding Gallery, Joy and the ladies were so friendly and welcoming. As soon as I tried the dress on I knew it was the one for me. I chose a replica of Daisy’s headpiece from The Great Gatsby and my veil was cathedral length with crystal embellishment around the edge by Amanda Wyatt. This was also from Knutsford Wedding Gallery. I chose all my jewellery from Swarovski.

I love makeup and hair so this was a very important factor for me. I found The Vintage Beauty Parlour online and booked a trial soon after. Anna listened to what I wanted and made me feel amazing. They are so professional and know vintage styles like no one else.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (16)

Mike hired his suit from Whitfield and Ward in Wilmslow. They were brilliant, after seeing them at a wedding fayre we decided to book an appointment. Craig asked what we wanted and when we told him our theme he dressed Mike in his suit. It was just how we had imagined him look. Craig and Nicola are very friendly and we would definitely recommend them to anyone looking for lovely suits with great service.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (17)

My bridesmaids dresses were made by my mum who is brilliant at sewing and their headpieces were bracelets that we adapted from Debenhams. The ushers were all in similar suits to Michael, also hired from Whitfield and Ward.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (19)

We chose the two brilliant ladies behind That Special Day Stationery to design and make our stationery. We discussed ideas and they made sample designs for us to look at. They made the most perfect save the dates, invites, order of service, place cards and table plan. They were brilliant and we cannot recommend them highly enough.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (24)

Our florists, Margaret and Janet from The Gilded Lily, were also amazing! Flowers were so important to me and I had a lot of ideas. I knew on our first appointment that The Gilded Lily was the florist for us. We have had so much fun planning the flowers with them. They listened to our ideas and created the most beautiful arrangements. We purchased our own crystal candelabra’s and Margaret came up with different ideas for them. The top table arrangement had all my favourite flowers in, such as pale pink peonies, hydrangeas and roses including, Norma Jean and Rosalind. My bouquet was made up of roses as well a pink peonies and stems of wheat to give a wild effect. Brides looking for a brilliant florist with lots of great ideas should visit The Gilded Lily!

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David and Jane of Stanbury Photography were our photographers. They photographed my sister’s wedding three years prior to ours so they were the only choice for us. They are so talented at what they do that we had complete confidence in them to photograph our wedding day. They capture moments that you can’t even remember happening and the attention to detail is second to none. They were with us from getting ready in the morning to our first dance and we hardly knew they were there. We are blown away by how good the pictures are and we cannot recommend David and Jane highly enough.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (32)

For our transport we used a company called Classic Wedding Cars. Jim there has an amazing collection of cars, we chose a black and ivory 1920’s style Bramwith and an ivory vintage Rolls Royce. Jim was so professional and friendly on the day and the cars were immaculate too.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (35)

I have a very talented aunty who made our dream wedding cake as our wedding present. Vi incorporated the silhouette design from our stationery to add to one of the tiers and we bought some feathers to add a 1920’s feel to the top tier. We loved everything about it and everyone commented how delicious it was. We can’t thank her enough.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (38)

My best friend and bridesmaid Kirsty is a graphic designer and so we asked her to design cards as favours for our male guests which entitled them to a drink on us at the bar. We hired a barrel of cask ale from Problem Child Brewery in Parbold for the bar. They allowed us to rename the beer ‘Prymul’ which incorporated both our surnames; Pryle and Mulligan. Kirsty then designed a crest to put on the hand pull which incorporated the silhouettes and various shapes from our invites.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (11)

My dad died suddenly three years prior to our wedding and I really wanted to make him a part of our special day so I gave our florist Margaret a small picture of him in a frame to include in my bouquet. I also borrowed a cameo that my dad had bought for my mum and asked her to pin it to the stem of the flowers.

We had pictures of dad and Mike’s aunty who had died the week before our wedding in church with a lit candle. The next day we distributed the wedding flowers on family graves in the cemetery.

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To entertain our guests we had the Brixi Singers choir singing various hymns in church throughout the service and we asked them to sing I Will Follow Him from the film Sister Act when we were leaving church. They were great and performed beautifully on the day.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (54)

It was the Grand National on the day of our wedding so we used the same cards designed by Kirsty to give all our guests the name of a horse running in the race. The race was played over the radio and the three winners were given a small prize announced during the speeches.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (52)

We enjoyed the whole day, but my favourite part has to be walking down the aisle and seeing Michael and all our family and friends.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (51)

We haven’t managed to go away on honeymoon yet as we were back at work soon after the wedding but will be looking to go somewhere in summer, which gives us something to look forward to.

A Great Gatsby Inspired Wedding (c) Stanbury Photography (62)

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be don’t get too stressed when planning, think of what’s important to you and book that first and then you can add extras. Also, have confidence in your suppliers as they really are brilliant at what they do!

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golden. pronovias for a romantic wedding at rockliffe hall – emma & mark

June 11th, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (68)

While we love to see the quirky wedding themes that certain couples pull out of the bag here at Brides Up North HQ, we also never tire a classic and romantic themed celebration like Emma and Mark’s big day.

After a decade together, Emma and Mark tied the knot during a traditional church ceremony followed by an elegant reception at Rockliffe Hall, complete with pretty styling in loved-up hues of pale pink and champagne.

Emma looked absolutely stunning in her lace Pronovias gown but was also keen for her maids to feel amazing on the big day too and so let them choose their dress style for the wedding. Certainly no sign of Bridezilla here then!

With images by Brides Up North featured supplier, Stan Seaton Photography.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (1)

emma says: Mark and I had been together for eight years when he proposed. We met at college at 16. Mark proposed to me in our flat in Gateshead on Christmas Day. I remember the morning vividly, in fact he hadn’t slept well all night! He woke very early on Christmas morning, showered and shaved and encouraged me to get dressed. I insisted on staying in my PJs like I always do on Christmas Day. Mark let me open my other presents under the Christmas tree. There was then a large box left at the back of the tree. As I unwrapped it I quickly saw there was a smaller box inside. At this point Mark went down on one knee and popped the question! My family were excitedly waiting to see the ring at Christmas dinner.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (8)

Our wedding was the 3rd August 2014. We were very keen to have a summer wedding and hoped for a warm sunny day which we were fortunate enough to get. With being a teacher it made sense having a summer wedding as we have lots of family and friends who are teachers who we wanted at the wedding. It also allowed a good amount of time off for our honeymoon.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (13)

We got married at St Philip and St James Church in Witton-le-Wear. I was born and raised in Witton village and the church was very meaningful to me and my family as it was where my younger brother and I were christened.

We then travelled to Rockliffe Hall for our reception. My mum encouraged me to visit Rockliffe Hall when we were first planning the wedding and as soon as we stepped inside we knew it had to be our venue. Rockliffe Hall is absolutely stunning and the staff are so accommodating.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (15)

We chose to get married in 2014 as that year we celebrated our tenth anniversary together. We chose a ‘Ten Years in Love’ theme where each table name was a year we had spent together with a picture of something special we had done during that year. We were both keen to keep the style of the wedding as traditional as possible and so went for a romantic feel with pink and cream roses.

We chose champagne as our wedding colour scheme as it fitted well with our romantic theme. My bridesmaids were at the front of my mind when picking the colours for the wedding as I wanted a colour that they would all feel comfortable wearing.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (16)

I knew from the beginning of planning the wedding that I wanted a lace wedding dress. Though I did make sure to try on other styles too. I was keen to wear a fitted lace dress and chose a beautiful Pronovias gown from Mia Sposa in Newcastle.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (41)

Mark was keen to buy himself and the other groomsmen a suit that fitted well. This wasn’t the easiest of tasks as we had to find a suit that would fit both my 16-year-old brother and our dads! We purchased the suits from T M Lewin. We hired the ivory waistcoats from Affleck and Moffat in Darlington and bought the champagne ties and pocket squares from Moss in Newcastle.

The bridesmaids were a great help in finding their dresses. I was keen for them to help shop for them as I wanted them to feel comfortable and happy on the day. We found their champagne BIBA dresses in House of Fraser. They looked beautiful.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (43)

For the big day we hired a Daimler and a Beauford from Classic Wedding Cars. My dad and I travelled in the Beauford and our bridesmaids and my mum travelled in the Daimler. Mark travelled with our best man in his car alongside my brother and his brother. Mark and I then travelled to Rockliffe in the Beauford.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (51)

Our photographers were Jane Miller and Stan Seaton from Stan Seaton Photography in Darlington. There was no question about choosing Stan and Jane as our photographers as my family had already worked with them before on a family photo shoot. We took a look at their wedding albums at a wedding fayre and were blown away by the quality of their work. They are both extremely professional but also very friendly and helpful.

On the day they felt more like our guests than photographers. Many of our guests commented on their work on the day of the wedding and also since seeing our wedding album. We would highly recommend them and can’t wait to work with them again in the future – perhaps when we have a family of our own!

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (53)

I carried a beautiful bouquet made by Flowers by Nattrass in Darlington. I chose to have pink and avalanche roses in my bouquet as they are my favourite flowers. The flowers also worked extremely well with the colour scheme and complemented both my dress and the bridesmaids’ dresses.

Nattrass also supplied our flowers for the church and reception. Laura from Nattrass was extremely helpful when we were choosing our flowers as we were unsure how to decorate the room. Laura invited us down to the Rockliffe during a wedding fayre to see an idea set up on the table. It was a great help to visualise the room and we ended up going for that display. We had roses inside large martini glasses.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (57)

We had our wedding stationery designed by Kristen from Noble Fine Art. She was an excellent help and certainly very patient as we made our decision. We could not have asked for nicer wedding stationary. They complemented the tables in the orangery extremely well.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (65)

We wanted to keep the traditional part of the wedding of cutting the cake but neither of us were too worried about spending lots of money on a cake. As such, we bought a jam and sponge wedding cake from Marks & Spencer and decorated it ourselves with fresh roses from Nattrass and champagne ribbon.

Choosing the menu for the wedding breakfast was a huge highlight of our wedding planning (especially for Mark). We knew all the food at Rockliffe would be stunning and we found it extremely difficult to choose.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (67)

For our wedding day entertainment we chose to have David Ball play the piano during the drinks reception. Later in the evening he also performed a live set with his guitar and sang a range of songs from Buble to Kings of Leon. We also had a photo booth for guests to have fun with the props. This worked well as our guestbook too as they stuck their photos in alongside a message and then had a set of photos to take away with them as a wedding favour.

A very special touch to our wedding day was my younger brother Patrick playing me down the aisle. He played Trumpet Voluntary on his trumpet. A family friend of ours Ali Cochlan also sung a modern version of Ave Maria whilst we signed the register.

Later in the day my parents surprised us with another performance by Ali and Richi of May You Stay Forever Young by Bob Dylan as part of my dad’s speech. That was a real tear jerker for all the guests but a wonderful surprise too.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (71)

Rockliffe Hall is a stunning venue and we would certainly recommend it to others. We especially enjoyed having our wedding breakfast in the orangery as it was so light and airy. It felt so private to us and the guests. The staff are extremely helpful and on the day everything felt seamless. The grounds of Rockliffe are superb and made for great photo opportunities. Overall it was a perfect experience and we certainly didn’t want to leave the next day!

Our favourite part of the day has to be exchanging our vows in front of all our family and friends. We had both known from an early age that we wanted to marry each other and when the day finally came we couldn’t wait. We both also enjoyed the evening reception where we got to relax and party with our close friends and family, some of which had travelled some distance to be there so it was great to catch up with them!

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (74)

We went to Santorini in Greece on our honeymoon. Mark actually booked it as a surprise and I had no clue where we were going until we reached the departure lounge! It was a great feeling having the surprise after a busy 22 months planning the wedding. The only difficulty I had was knowing what to pack! Lots of my friends asked me how I felt leaving the honeymoon plans to Mark but I knew I could trust his decisions. We spent a glorious two weeks away in the sun eating lots of beautiful Greek food.

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (75)

Our top tip to other Brides Up North would be that although at times you can get carried away with the wedding plans (and sometimes get stressed) remember what the big day is really all about. The only important thing that matters on the day is that you are committing to spend the rest of your life with your best friend and the person you love. Don’t let the small things worry you!

A Romantic Gold Wedding at Rockliffe Hall (c) Stan Seaton Photography (81)

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Super Beautiful. A Pretty DIY Wedding In Preston – Graham & Aimee

July 11th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

A whole lot of heart and soul went into the planning of Aimee and Graham’s wedding day, with the bride to be firmly at the head of operations.  Known for her girly ways and pretty styling efforts, this Brides Up North reader certainly wasn’t going to disappoint on the biggest day of her life.

The result?  A personal and pretty celebration with lots of delectable DIY details.  If you like really pretty things, you’re going to be very inspired.  Pinterest fingers at the ready.

With images by Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Aimee says: We got engaged in London at Christmas time. We were at Hyde Park Winter Wonderland, which I had been so excited to visit as I absolutely love all things Christmassy! We were at the ice rink which looked so pretty all lit up with fairy lights at night when Graham pulled out the most perfect ring and proposed to me! Afterwards we headed straight to Harvey Nichols champagne bar for a glass of celebratory bubbles.

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Our wedding was on 26th April 2014.  There was no real special reason behind the particular date other than when we visited Beeston Manor for the first time we absolutely fell in love with it and they were fast running out of Saturday availability! We always wanted a spring wedding so the last Saturday they had left until later in the year was perfect for us. We got in pencilled in there and then.

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

We got married at All Saints Church on Hesketh Bank. It meant such a lot to us both to get married there as we both grew up visiting that church, all our family weddings and christenings happen there so I really couldn’t imagine it being anywhere else. Ever since I was a little girl imagining my wedding, I always dreamt of it being there. It was so lovely that Reverend Bill knew us and our family to make the service personal and really special. To top it off, it’s a gorgeous little church too!

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

The theme for our wedding was a vintage style English country garden look with a slight rustic twist, but I am a girly girl so it was kept very pretty with lots of lace everywhere. We chose this style as it is very “me” and really reflected my personality and of the style of our home. Graham always says that it is my job to make everything pretty so he was more than happy to go along with it and helped out with picking everything.

Our wedding colours were ivory, blush pink and mint. We chose these as we felt ivory and pink colours always make for a pretty and classic wedding, I am a bit obsessed with mint at the moment so adding that in just added some extra interest.

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

I wore an A-line tulle skirted dress from Blue by Enzoani which I bought from Emma Hartley Bridal in Colne. It featured lace appliqués and beading detail on the skirt and the bodice was a ruche waist with lace overlaid with beaded flowers. I tried on 67 dresses trying to find “the one” but I loved this dress as it was so pretty and romantic, with so much beautiful detail, I felt like a princess when I tried it on.

I knew I wanted a full skirted dress but also wanted a covered top so we had it customised with a tulle top with lace appliqués which matched the skirt to create an illusion neckline and V shape back.

I had amazing lace detail peep toe shoes from No.1 Jenny Packham at Debenhams which I absolutely adored!

In my hair I wore the Autumn headband from Liberty in Love with tulle and silk flowers and beads. I had a two tier waterfall veil with tiny diamantes to catch the light, again from Emma Hartley Bridal.

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Our bridesmaids wore blush pink dresses from Coast with petal detail on the bust, they were perfect for the romantic and floral look we were going for and looked beautiful on the girls. We were very fortunate about the fit of the dresses as mid way through planning after we had bought the dresses, two of my bridesmaids found out they were pregnant and luckily the dresses were a perfect shape for a growing baby bump, they looked lovely on the day! We had two flower girls who wore dresses very similar to the bridesmaids but in white and had little cardigans featuring the same petal detail to tie everything together.

The groomsmen wore matching suits to Graham and our page boy had a mini version with a tailcoat, waistcoat and bow tie and which we paired with Converse which looked adorable

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Michelle Sisson did my makeup and my bridesmaid’s hair and makeup, she did a fantastic job and we all felt amazing after she had worked her magic, she was so lovely to have around on the wedding morning and made sure we look perfect before we left for church. My friend Emma Shaw Hair did my bridal hair and was again fantastic at achieving a gorgeous do which was exactly as I wanted.

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Graham wore a grey three piece slim fit suit, with a blush pink tie and hankie. It is not really his style to wear a full tail coat suit so this was perfect, it created a relaxed but smart look which really suited him and I think he looked really handsome. We hired the suits from Winstanleys at Oswaldtwistle.

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

My mum and I travelled to church in a vintage Bentley in cream and the bridesmaids followed in a matching Daimler then n the way to the reception me and Graham were in the Bentley and the flower girls had a turn in the “posh car” which they loved! We hired the cars from a local company called Classic Wedding Cars and Jimmy the driver had us laughing the whole journey which helped with nerves!

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

I carried an amazing white and pink bouquet of peonies and hydrangeas which are my absolute favourite flowers. They were so gorgeous and fluffy; I didn’t want to put them down all day! They were hand tied with matching ribbon and lace, I pinned my best friend’s Grandma’s heart shape brooch onto them as my something old and borrowed. Our flowers were all from Libbi at Flowers by Strawberry Fields and she did such an amazing job, they were better than I ever imagined.  As soon as I met Libbi it was clear we had very similar taste and we knew we could completely trust her to make everything super beautiful. 

Pretty vintage style wedding at Beeston Manor, Preston (c) Weddings By Luke

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Love Is Golden! A Real Wedding In The North West – Natalie & Alex

May 26th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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This week has been wall to wall gorgeousness, with Real Wedding after Real Wedding here on the wedding blog, so I thought that I might as well round off the week with another beautiful big day!  Thanks to Adam Riley Photography and real bride Natalie for sharing this stunning celebration with us today. 

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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Natalie says:  We got engaged in July 2011. I had just got out the shower and Alex was on one knee (in his boxers!) in our bedroom! {Editors note: This appears to be a theme! See Thursday’s Real Wedding } We were going to California later that week but apparently Alex was becoming nervous about taking the ring through customs- so spontaneously proposed that afternoon! It was perfect as it then meant we could celebrate with our families that evening.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography   A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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Our marriage took place at St. Michael’s Church, Aughton, followed by the reception at West Tower Country House Hotel, Aughton on 30th March 2012. 

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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I fell in love with West Tower the second we pulled up! Not only is it set in the most beautiful countryside but it is the perfect mix of traditional and modern- plus The Bridal Suite is INCREDIBLE! West Tower only holds one wedding per day so it meant that the venue was jam packed full of people who were only celebrating our day. I couldn’t recommend West Tower and its fabulous staff highly enough!

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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We both wanted our wedding to be about family, our friends and us, so we tried to make it as personal as possible. We love to travel so our invitations were created to look like a suitcase arriving through the post! We named all of our tables after places we have visited around the globe – and accompanied them with a picture of us at an iconic location. Having said that Alex is an extremely proud Mancunian so our Top Table was ‘Manchester’

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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I had absolutely no idea on which colours to choose but after many hours trawling the shops we finally discovered some beautiful dresses for the bridesmaids in a gorgeous shade of teal I don’t like anything to be ‘too matchy’ so after that we kept everything very neutral sticking to shades of champagnes and pastels.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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Both Alex and I travelled (separately of course!) in a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud from Classic Wedding Cars. Jim, our driver, was lovely and put us ease as we made our way to the church.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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My number one requirement was I wanted to have some beautiful straps- and I found the perfect dress (SSM5210CS) on the Sottero Midgley website. It was an ivory fish tail covered in gorgeous lace and pearls. After trying to search the dress down across the whole of the North West I was devastated to find out that the dress of my dreams had been discontinued. I took matters into my own hands and emailed Maggie Sottero directly who informed me that Sugared Almonds in Earby had one sample size left. I hastily made an appointment- and a two hour trip later I finally tried it on- it was absolutely perfect (although rather large at the early stages!). So many people approached me on and after the wedding and said it was the most beautiful and unusual dress they had ever seen. I definitely agree!

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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I had a tear shaped bouquet, which included two types of pink roses, lilac freesias, cream lisianthus and eucalyptus foliage.

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My sister (The Chief Bridesmaid) had a smaller version of my bouquet and the other bridesmaids had pink roses and eucalyptus.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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All of the bridesmaids are tall, thin and gorgeous – so they were very easy to dress! After many hours of trying hundreds of dresses on we finally chose a silk, one shouldered, full length, teal gown from Fairytale Occasions in Whitefield.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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We had Nathan Bradbury singing Motown Classics during our drinks reception which was a nice way to greet the guests after the Church Ceremony.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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Adam Riley Photography is an absolute must for any future bride! His photos are incredible and still make me cry when I look at them! We wanted extremely natural photographs and Adam’s reportage style meant that he captured so many little moments that I had forgotten about or not even seen – a perfect reminder of the day!

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We used Creative Weddings for our video who were extremely helpful throughout. They had filmed a friend’s wedding so I knew they were excellent.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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Princess4aday helped add the finishing touches to the already perfect West Tower and dressed the room for us with champagne swaging, bay trees, fairy lights and wooden hearts.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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I know it’s a cliché but the whole day was perfect and there wouldn’t be one thing we would changed. We both smiled from start to finish! It was just wonderful having all the people that you love in one room together-having the best party ever! I wish I could do it all again!

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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My Polish Grandad sang ‘Sto Lat’ after the speeches. It is a traditional polish song which means ‘100 years of happiness’- he had sang it at my parents’ wedding 31 years earlier. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house after that!

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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We chose DJ Steve Mitchell who works at West Tower regularly and has a great reputation – we knew we were in safe hands with him. Steve also provides fantastic and unusual lighting – so The Ballroom was transformed between the Wedding Breakfast and Evening Reception – making it seem like a brand new room

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My ‘zombie wedding’ themed hen do had taken place over Halloween, so my cousin Katherine (also a bridesmaid) had taught us all the ‘Thriller’ routine. We then performed it during the evening reception – much more difficult in a wedding dress!

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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After the wedding, we had 10 days on The Riviera Maya in Mexico, followed by two nights in London in a gorgeous hotel looking out on The Houses of Parliament.

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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My top tips for other Brides Up North would be plan in advance! I focussed on one element of the wedding at a time and planned as early as possible. I could then make sure I had the best of what was out there and it was exactly what we wanted.

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I made sure that everything was sorted about two weeks before the wedding and this then meant that we could relax and enjoy the build up in those last few days and drink lots of champagne!

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A Real Wedding In The North West by Adam Riley Photography

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Congratulations Natalie & Adam!

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Are you newly wed?  Contact me to share your Real Wedding memories!

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  – Images © 2012 Adam Riley Photography

Adam Riley Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but 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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