Brides Up North

Fly The Flag! A Vintage Gown For A Real Wedding In Chester – Carrie & Paul

June 12th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Anderson Jones Photography

This afternoon we’re invited for a summer high tea with Brides Up North reader Carrie and her husband Paul, as we celebrate their Real Wedding in Chester.  Carrie combined authentic vintage pieces with delicate decorative touches to create a pretty and personal celebration.

With images by Anderson Jones Photography and film by Eight Wood Studios.

 

Anderson Jones Photography

Carrie says:  We had a long engagement – we got engaged four years prior to the wedding – and were married on 4th August 2013 at The Doubletree Hilton in Chester.

Anderson Jones Photography

We opted for a vintage theme with lots of greys, creams and pinks, and used the venue’s beautiful brick barn which suited our styling perfectly.

Anderson Jones Photography

Anderson Jones Photography

Anderson Jones Photography

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I chose a column lace dress with a fishtail.  It was an authentic vintage dress altered dramatically at Melanie James Bridal in Chorlton.

I carried a bouquet of hydrangeas by Acacia of Chester.

Anderson Jones Photography

My bridesmaids wore cream vintage style dresses from Coast and the guys wore suits, shirts and shoes were Next and ties from M&S.  

Anderson Jones Photography

My makeup artist was Laura Wisinger, with hair by Rebecca Rigby. 

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Anderson Jones Photography

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It’s All Rosy! Ronald Joyce For A Real Wedding at Doxford Hall, Northumberland – Clare & Chris

July 29th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Sarah-Jane Ethan Photography

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Well hello there Brides Up North!  Welcome to another week.  I hope you all have had a lovely weekend.  This weekend I’ve been having a rather special “busman’s holiday” attending the gorgeous nuptials of our family friends Chris & Lisa.  I’m such a sucker for a bit of romance, and I’ll never tire of a proper knees up!  Lisa also surprised her guests with some unique styling that was out of this world pretty.  I’m looking forward to sharing the details of their big day with you soon.   But let’s let the newlyweds enjoy their honeymoon first…

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We are definitely in the thick of wedding season!  My little family were invited to no less than three celebrations this weekend alone.  Now, I’m good at multi-tasking – but not that good!  Big love to Becky & James and Ellie & Alexei, who we couldn’t be with, but who we love very much.  I can’t wait to see your photographs and hear all about your days.

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Today, we join another happy couple for their beautiful Real Wedding at Brides Up North dream venue and Featured Supplier Doxford Hall Hotel & Spa.  With images by Matt Ethan and Sarah-Jane Ethan, Clare and Chris’ day is classy, intimate and really rather romantic, awash with pretty pink gowns and blousy roses.  Enjoy!

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Clare says:  Chris proposed to me on Newcastle Quayside on my birthday in January 2012, and we tied the knot on Friday 24th May, 2013 at Doxford Hall Hotel and Spa, near Chathill, Alnwick in Northumberland. 

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I went to a wedding open day at the venue with my Dad and little sister and immediately fell in love with Doxford Hall and its beautiful surroundings so much so that I returned with Chris and my parents soon after.  We booked our wedding there and then.

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We went for a classic, vintage feel and our colour scheme was soft rose, ivory and lime green. 

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My dress was called "Tiffany" by Victoria Jane Collection for Ronald Joyce. It was in ivory lace, a mermaid style fishtail dress with a sweetheart neckline. I bought the dress from a lovely bridal shop from Newport in Wales called All About Eve. My headpiece was from the Jon Richard Luxe range at Debenhams and was a triple mixed crystal stone headband.

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My hair and makeup was done by Princess Hair and Beauty based in Greenside, Tyne and Wear. 

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Chris wore a mid grey morning suit hired from Slaters in Newcastle and the bridesmaids wore Coast  "Symphony" maxi dresses in Soft Rose. 

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A lovely local lady called Lesley who runs her own business named Stem Ginger, based in Washington, Tyne and Wear made my flowers, my three bridesmaids’ bouquets, all the buttonholes and my flower girls’ fairy-tale wands and cake topper.

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My bouquet was a round hand tie with a mix of vintage ivory and vintage pink soft touch roses interspersed with small clusters of green, ivory wax flower and green anethum heads, the stems were partially exposed bound with ivory ribbon and secured with pearl pins.

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My bridesmaids’ bouquets were a smaller version of mine but with more vintage ivory flowers than pink.

The men’s buttonholes were a single semi open vintage rose with rose leaf foliage and Chris’s buttonhole had an extra touch with a cluster of green and ivory wax flower and green anethum similar to that in my bouquet.

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Although we had an absolutely brilliant day and night our favourite part of the day would have to be the ceremony itself which was conducted by Alnwick Registrars who were personal, sincere and added the correct amount of humour in the right place. For the ceremony itself we added our own personal touch by choosing our own ceremony music, vows, readings and we also designed our own ceremony pamphlet. 

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We also had a fantastic local photographer on our wedding day called Matt Ethan who was assisted by his wife Sarah-Jane Ethan who is also an accomplished photographer in her own right. Both Matt and Sarah-Jane were professional and innovative, putting us and our guests at ease to get the perfect photographs.

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All the food and drink on the day was provided by Doxford Hall who use local produce from local suppliers. 

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Apart from the main table flower arrangements (by Julie of Alnwick Florists) we decorated the tables ourselves with rose petals, coloured crystals and tea lights.

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We made the table place name cards, the favours and the table name cards which were named after Northumbrian Castles. The table name cards featured a picture of each castle on one side and information about the history throughout the ages on the other side.

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We also put together our own sweetie bar using different sized jars and a variety of popular retro sweets and lollipops decorated with labels, bows and stickers which we hand made.

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We went for a traditional three tier round wedding cake made by a local bakers who my family have used for nearly 30 years, James Ford and Son in Berwick upon Tweed. Two of our tiers were a traditional fruit cake and one tier was vanilla sponge. The cake was decorated in ivory and white icing with ivory ribbon and our cake topper was a smaller version of my bouquet.

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We decided to book an excellent local North East Singer, Tom Wyllie,  who had come highly recommended. We also hired a local disco called Genetix who played a fantastic range of music and had a fantastic range of coloured lighting and shapes which really gave our evening that special touch we were looking for. Both Tom and Genetix disco did several spots each throughout the evening and kept our guests thoroughly entertained making it very memorable and enjoyable.

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After deliberation we decided to split our honeymoon into two periods.  Straight after the wedding we had a four night break to Rome and in September we have booked for a two week trip to the Caribbean!

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Our top tip for any bride and groom to be would be to try and do as many of the small little touches yourself. This way it is personal to you both and will save you money in what can be an expensive event.

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Congratulations Clare & Chris!

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To see your own Real Wedding live on Brides Up North, contact me

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Sarah-Jane Ethan & Matt Ethan

Doxford Hall 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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Real Wedding Recap Summer 2013: Mellow Yellow! A Real Wedding In The North East – Steph & Dan

June 19th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the team take a break until to rest and recharge for the second half of what’s set to be the biggest and best year year yet at Brides Up North HQ, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding pretty. 

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Usual service will recommence on 1st July 2013,  but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far in 2013, plenty of eye candy, new features that we won’t be able to wait to share, some special supplier showcases and a couple of surprises too!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I reckon a dash of sunshine is just what the doctor ordered.  First shared here on the blog back on a cold January’s morning, step forward Steph, Dan and their beautiful flower filled Summer wedding in the North East.  Let’s get mellow with the yellow.

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With images from Brides Up North Featured Supplier Sean Elliott Photography

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Steph says: We got engaged on 14th May 2011 in Newcastle – I had a long wait as we are childhood sweethearts who had been together for 11 years prior to our engagement!

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We were married on 11th August 2012 at Crook Hall and Gardens which is a hidden gem in Durham. We had the venue until 6pm, we then went to the Gala Theatre in Durham for our evening reception.

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Right from the start we wanted an informal and rustic wedding so we went on the search for a barn conversion… despite having the Northumberland countryside on our doorstep there appeared to be a gap in the market for this up North as we couldn’t find one! A friend recommended Crook Hall and Gardens and as soon as we went there for afternoon tea we were sold! It’s a beautiful and unique venue with the most stunning collection of gardens and quirky decor. The medieval hall that we were married in was the perfect substitute to a barn ceremony. Crook Hall was so different to any wedding venue we had previously visited and we instantly fell in love with how beautiful it was.

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My mum and dad surprised me with a Beaumont vintage car to take me to the wedding. 

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It took me ages to choose a colour scheme – I didn’t want to choose a colour at first as I thought it would limit me in the hunt to find bridesmaid dresses! Eventually we found some navy bridesmaid dresses and then through my obsession of scrolling through Pinterest I found a picture of a girl in a navy dress and yellow shoes. From this point my colour theme was navy and yellow! The bridesmaids wore navy dresses and mustard shoes, we had yellow in our flowers and yellow balloons!

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As already stated, I have an obsession with lace therefore it was never an option to even consider not having a lace dress. The dress I chose was a Justin Alexander dress 8530. It is a beautiful lace mermaid gown with a bateau neckline. The dress comes with a veil but I purchased a separate lace edged cathedral veil from Joyce Jackson called Orlando that I fell in love with in the bridal shop – Mia Sposa Bridal & Menswear in Newcastle.

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The shoes were a beautiful vintage style lace up pair from Rainbow Club called Clara.

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My brother in-law’s sister played the harp as guests were coming into the wedding. She also played Canon in D as we walked back down the aisle after our ceremony and during our drinks reception following the ceremony.

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I carried a vintage style hand tied bouquet including ivory rose, lisianthus, freesia, yellow dill, achilliea which was bound with lace.  My bridesmaids had simple hand tied gypsophila.  The groom and groomsmen wore buttonholes with an achilliea and beargrass loop.

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The bridesmaids wore beautiful but simple lace navy dresses from Monsoon and their yellow suede shoes were from ClarksThe groom and groomsmen wore navy suits hired from Waltons Menswear.

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My vision from the start was to provide a rustic / vintage theme. Anyone who knows me is aware I have an obsession with lace and so there was no doubt that lace would also play a huge part in my theme! We made lace chair ties, lace covered jam jars, put lace around the bouquets, the bridesmaid dresses were lace and obviously I had a lace dress!

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I loved the idea of homemade décor and personalised touches that we could keep hold of for years to come. We spent time searching craft markets for decorative inspiration and spent months collecting jam jars and milk bottles that we could decorate with lace, twine and buttons. My sister made old fashioned luggage tags and stamped them with messages and my friends and I made homemade raspberry jam as name places and favours. For our table names we painted the glass of old fashioned photo frames with black board paint and wrote the table names in chalk paint. We also hung slates in the gardens with extracts from our readings on and used an old fashioned vintage suitcase for our cards and gifts.

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As we had the venue booked from 11.30 and our ceremony wasn’t until 12.30 we had lawn games for the guests to enjoy in the gardens as we wanted them to make the most of the venue and spend as much time there as possible.

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We had decorations hanging from the trees and this made for some beautiful pictures when we were cutting the cake.  We used Ladybird Cakes from Tynemouth and had a three tier cake made of carrot cake, raspberry and white chocolate, and lemon sponge.

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I absolutely loved the whole day and it genuinely exceeded all my expectations! However there are two parts of the day that stand out as my favourite. The first being when my friends and I are having fun in the gardens while trying to find our way through the maze with the balloons.  We used two yellow balloons to add an element of fun, a flash of colour and we also wanted it to express our informal theme of the day. It provided some excellent photo opportunities!  There is a great photo of my friends who surprisingly all agreed to lie down in the grass to capture an amazing photo of their legs poking above the flowers!

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My other favourite part was when Dan and I managed to have time with just the two of us in the gardens as the sun was setting – Sean has managed to capture the most amazing pictures we could have ever asked for! You spend most of your wedding day speaking to everyone else but each other so it was nice to have some time to savour the moment and enjoy our own company as Mr and Mrs!

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As part of our photography package we purchased the Photo Peg to entertain the evening guests. This was an excellent alternative to a photo booth! Polaroid pictures were taken of the guests holding a large vintage frame and they held up a chalk board with a message for us. The polaroid’s were then pegged on a ‘washing line’ and at the end of the night the guests could take the pictures home as a keepsake. 

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We used Colin Cook – The North East Wedding DJ who provided our evening entertainment and mood up-lighting and The Vintage Tea Company for hire of bunting, cake stands and crockery for our floral decorations in the evening venue.

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After the wedding we honeymooned in Thailand – we spent time in Bangkok, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is don’t feel pressure to conform to the norm! Our wedding may not have been the most traditional but we made it personal to us and we made sure that it was fun! Make sure you set time aside in the day to spend time with each other – you’ll be surprised how little you’ll see of each other!! Spend time searching for an amazing photographer… Sean has taken the most beautiful and unique pictures which has provided us with memories to last a lifetime!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Congratulations Steph & Dan!

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on the blog!  Here’s how to do it!

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  – Images © 2013 Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott 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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Pie & Mash Makes Perfect! Venus Bridal For A Silver & Teal Real Wedding In Yorkshire – Claire & John

April 28th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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Although I’m officially “off duty” today – my first Sunday being busy doing absolutely nothing in quite a while  bloomin’ ages, and for quite a while bloomin’ ages to come – I couldn’t resist popping in to share this beautiful Real Wedding sent to me by bride and groom Claire & John and Brides Up North Featured Supplier Damian Hall Photography

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As a blogger (and avid consumer of anything pretty) I frequent lots of blogs myself – a very mixed bag of the wedding, celebrity, news, humour and lifestyle varieties – and I’m always saddened by the general weekend down time.  Us bloggers do need weekends off sometimes too – a twice daily feature schedule, busy freelance schedule and nearly twenty Brides Up North wedding exhibitions and Brides Up North events in 2013 to organise does not a lot of free time make – but I do like to keep things interesting around here on a Saturday and Sunday. 

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So without further ado, lets get stuck into today’s lovely celebration and meet our bride and groom (who make a rather cute comedy duo in their interview)!

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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Claire says:  We got engaged in St Paul’s Bay in Rhodes in August 2010 and were married on 6th October 2012 at Crow Hill Cottage in Marsden.  We wanted an exclusive use venue where we wouldn’t bump into other people getting married on the day. We really liked Crow Hill when we first went to visit- it is a unique venue in a lovely location and has a marquee outside.  Our families stayed at Crow Hill the night before and after the wedding, which really made the weekend special.

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John says: It was quite near me mam’s house, and the catering staff offered pie and mash as an option for the wedding breakfast.

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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John: Our wedding coordinator Rebecca offered lots of different themes for the day (though you were free to design your own if you were feeling creative)! We opted for a clean, contemporary theme with crystals and candles and a silver and teal colour scheme. 

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Claire: My dress was long and white with one shoulder strap. It was from Gorgeous Brides in Wakefield and designed by Venus Bridal.

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The bridesmaids wore silver dresses from Coast, with home-made white bands to match the wedding colour scheme.

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Claire: I chose to carry a bouquet of silk flowers from Ups A Daisy Bridal Flowers. They also made buttonholes for John, my Dad, John’s Dad and the best man, and a matching cake topper.

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Claire: We arrived by Ford Fiesta the night before.

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John: Which was a magical experience.

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John: Seeing Claire in her wedding dress for the first time took my breath away.

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Claire: Entertainment wise, John’s friend Leavon played acoustic guitar and sang during the ceremony and drinks reception and  Damian Hall Photography helped us to set up a fancy-dress photo booth for the evening, which was a lot of fun.

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Claire: Damian and Charlotte Hall were our photographers on the day. They did a fantastic job!

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Claire: We had some absolutely amazing food! Tracey at Crow Hill did two options for the wedding breakfast; pie and mash, and Mediterranean grilled chicken. The canapés were lovely, and bacon sandwiches in the evening were a great touch!

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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Claire: I am allergic to eggs and dairy so cakes are kind of difficult! Mum made some lovely dairy-free cupcakes and a big cake on top to cut.

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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Claire: My favourite part of the day was when we entered the marquee and everyone was upstanding to welcome Mr and Mrs Barnard!

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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John:  After the wedding we had a mini-moon in Venice, and stayed in a very cute (and tiny) hotel near St. Mark’s square.  It was a great first holiday as husband and wife!

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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(c) Damian Hall Photography

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Claire: I’d definitely recommend picking a venue where you can stay the weekend as it prolongs the celebrations a little bit! Having a couple of meal options is a good idea too, to make sure everyone is happy.
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John: Though obviously, pie and mash will do that for you.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Damian Hall Photography

Damian Hall 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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Patent Red: A Real Wedding In The North West – Lucy & Nick

April 5th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Editor’s note: Due to spikes in traffic, we have been experiencing some delays with our server over the past few days.  It turns out that you can be too popular for your own good!  Be rest assured our web team are working hard behind the scenes to restore super quick speeds.  Please bear with us!

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Well, when I saw today’s bride Lucy’s choice of shoes (patent red Jimmy Choo Mary Janes people!) I just knew that the rest of her wedding to Nick at Combermere Abbey in Cheshire was bound to be very fabulous indeed. 

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With images by Yana Photography, I wasn’t disappointed!  This is a very beautiful way to finish off the week.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Lucy says:  We got engaged in Cornwall during a weekend away. Nick proposed on top of a cliff overlooking the sea one evening at sunset. We then went back to the cottage where we were staying and celebrated with champagne he had waiting.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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We were married on 8th September 2012 at Combermere Abbey, Cheshire.  Combermere has beautiful walled gardens and a stunning glasshouse for the ceremony which opens out on to a fruit maze. The reception was held in a lovely permanent marquee they have in another part of the walled gardens. Nowhere else we looked around compared to Combermere. The gardens are fabulous and we were lucky as the weather was perfect on the day which added to the relaxed atmosphere.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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We didn’t have a theme. I like simplicity so nothing too fussy or wedding(y)!  We chose a colour scheme of black and white with a splash of red for colour – again to keep things classic and clean.

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Nick held a pre-ceremony drinks reception for guests so that they could relax with a drink and enjoy the gardens at the venue prior to the ceremony.

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I wore a Maggie Sottero gown from a boutique in Chester. I picked it as it was different to anything else I had seen before and the fit was perfect.  My shoes were from Jimmy Choo. I originally went in to buy from their bridal collection but after seeing these striking red shoes I knew they were the ones for me. I also wore them a lot when we went for dinner on our honeymoon.

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A bouquet of red roses which were so beautiful I didn’t want to put them down.

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My bridesmaids wore dresses from Coast. I don’t like traditional bridesmaids dresses so I picked dresses that I thought were smart but also really suited the girls.

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Yana from Yana Photography took our wedding photos. Yana photographed my sisters wedding a few years ago at Wrenbury Hall so knew how beautiful her photos are.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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For favours each person had a scratch card and a bar of organic chocolate. We had a few winners – but only small amounts!

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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We had a harpist for the ceremony and drinks reception and a DJ for the evening. We also hired a fun casino for the evening which went down really well with the guests. Everybody had fun on the black jack and roulette tables and champagne spot prizes were handed out to the winners.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Our cake was a three tier chocolate, fruit and sponge from Marks and Spencer. My grandparents bought our cake for us as a wedding gift.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Every single minute was wonderful but the speeches and seeing our guests having fun on the casino was great.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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After the wedding we spent a week on Barbados soaking up the sun followed by a week in Cornwall where Nick had proposed.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to put together a detailed running order for the day a few months prior to the wedding so that you can identify where there might be any lulls and you can fill these gaps with entertainment – this will also ensure your day flows really well. For example to avoid a lull after dinner our casino kicked started the evening for guests and got everyone out of their seats and talking.

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Yana Photography at Combermere Abbey

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Congratulations Lucy and Nick!

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Fancy seeing your own beautiful Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North?  Here’s how

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Yana Photography

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