November 19th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Is there a grander setting for a wedding than a castle? We think not having feasted our eyes on the pics from today’s real wedding.
Having secured their dream venue, Tom and Stef let their surroundings do the talking, just adding a few simple touches in elegant vintage décor whilst working around their timeless blue colour scheme.
The floral arrangements are particularly stunning, and we love the maids’ vibrant cobalt dresses too!
With images by Kate Gosney Photography.
stef says: We got engaged in Las Vegas. It was the second day at the end of a night out. Tom got down on one knee and produced the most amazing ring!
We got married on 28th August, which was the Bank Holiday weekend, giving people more time to recover. Chiddingstone Castle was our chosen venue. My dad got married there and I had visited as a child so it felt special to me.
We didn’t have a theme as such, instead just choosing to let the beautiful venue do the talking and making choices that were sensitive to that. Our colour scheme was different tones of blues as it’s my favourite colour and I think it’s timeless too.
November 13th, 2015 | Julia Braime
If in doubt, add sequins.
November 11th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Today’s bride and groom made their big day all about feeling relaxed and having fun. Though not wanting a church ceremony, Helen and Michael didn’t want to miss out on having their ceremony in a grand and historic building and so booked Chester Town Hall in which to say their ‘I dos’.
The party then got underway at their tipi reception complete with afternoon tea, barbecue, ice cream and a live band – what summer days and nights are made of!
With images by Marky Kirk Photography.
helen says: We got engaged on a trip to The USA and Canada in summer 2013. We were in a Canadian Canoe in the middle of Lightning Lake in the Rocky Mountains of British Columbia when Mike got down on two knees (to stop the boat from rocking!).
We chose 25th July 2015 so we could have plenty of time to plan the wedding and have fun doing it. Also, this happened to be the first weekend of the summer holidays. We got married at the Chester Town Hall as we wanted a non-religious ceremony but somewhere with a more traditional feel.
We also wanted a nice relaxed feel for the wedding without losing the historic grandeur usually offered by a church wedding, so the town hall fitted the formal side of the ceremony. Afternoon tea with a South African themed barbecue and ice cream in a tepee in a field followed, which provided the relaxed environment we wanted for the wedding breakfast and evening celebrations too.
October 29th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
No matter what the weather outside, Joy and Mike’s pretty yellow wedding is guaranteed to brighten up your day.
Keeping things local, Joy and Mike chose to tie the knot in their local church followed by a quaint village hall wedding reception complete with reams of bunting!
Overall the décor and styling choices make for a bright and beautiful big day!
With images by Jemma King Photography.
joy says: We got engaged 26th August 2013 near Bridlington in front of our six-month-old son. We had a day out together that was almost identical to our first date then just before home time Mike popped the question!
We got married 26th April 2014. We wanted to get married ASAP but also wanted a spring wedding. Thinking back I was probably nuts as it was my son’s first birthday and my 30th birthday all in that month! It was a very busy few weeks!
We got married at Skirlaugh church, East Ridings, which is in the village we have lived in for the last five years. We even used the village hall for our reception – so it was a proper local affair!
As we were doing everything ourselves at the venue, we kept the theme pretty rustic with a sense of village hall charm. We had a tea urn in the small room, bunting and pompoms all around but then somethings I wanted to keep pretty traditional, like candelabras – so the theme was quite loose really.
I love the colour yellow so much and had seen yellow and grey wedding before and had admired it. I knew we would use it at our wedding. I had a themed Pinterest board for about two years before we were even engaged!
I bought my dress from Elite in Hull. It was the only thing we didn’t scrimp on! It wasn’t one I wanted to try on but my bridesmaid made me and we both fell in love with it and cried! It came home with me the very same day!
I feel so bad saying this but Mike’s suit was a wool suit from H&M – my dress cost 20 times more than it! The groomsman wore same suit as Mike.
The church and hall were just round the corner from each other so for transport we borrowed our friend’s vintage MG called ‘Gatsby’ for our wedding car and Mike drove it out of the village for our photos in the countryside.
Jemma King (who is a superstar) was our photographer! We had met a few times before as our young boys are born within days of each other. Jemma is so professional but also just so easy to get on with and on a day as important as your wedding day it really made a difference that we were comfortable with her. I would recommend Jemma to anyone, her photos are beautiful snapshots of moments rather than stuffy staged shots.
My bouquet was from Daisy Chain, based in Skirlaugh. I was quite specific in the flowers I wanted and the colours and the florist there did exactly what I wanted.
I did the other flowers myself. As it was April I bought about 30 bunches of daffodils from Tesco! The only issue was timing it just right as they took a few days to open so I practised for a few weeks before making sure I went and bought then on the right day so they would be fully open for the Saturday of the wedding. The bridesmaids carried daffodils too, which I tied with lovely ribbon and pearl topped pins. I also made around 80 Pompoms for the venue and borrowed 100 meters of bunting from a friend. Lots of the decor was begged and borrowed or made!
My amazing friend and bridesmaid Bridie, made our wedding cake for us! Superstar! We had three different tiers: vanilla, chocolate and lemon.
For our wedding breakfast we had a hog roast and then a hot buffet on the evening. We didn’t want a formal sit down dinner. To drink – prosecco of course, my favourite!
We didn’t have a budget for entertainment so instead we had a Spotify playlist collaborated by our guests in the months leading up to the wedding. My friend lent us all the sound equipment. We also had a photo booth, which proved a great hit!
The village hall was fantastic and so we would definitely recommend it to other couples! A huge blank canvas of space but you have to be prepared to work hard to put it together.
My favourite part of the wedding was getting to spend the day with all my favourite people in the world – it was just amazing!
As we have a young son we just went for a few days to the Lake District on honeymoon following the wedding. We got upgraded to an amazing suite and it was bliss!
My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to try and enjoy the day itself! All the planning and work that goes into it, and then it goes in a blink of an eye!
October 19th, 2015 | Julia Braime
Today’s real wedding couple chose their venue because it provided something that little different – and looking at their images, we can see why it ticked boxes.
Rustic and minimalist, with a modern edge, the white wash brick structure with beautiful exposed beams, does a lot of the talking for itself. Its natural charm was further enhanced by Lee and Jane with the use of lots of twinkling fairy lights, which draped elegantly across the ceiling.
Opting to keep things simple, they then just added a few simple decorative touches here and there in white gypsophila and rustic bird cages to complete their dream setting. It certainly gets the thumbs up from us.
Images by James Tracey Photography.
jane says: We got engaged on 3rd July in the New Forest at a beautiful hotel called The Pig. It a beautiful sunny evening and the night before my 40th birthday, needless to say lots of champagne was consumed!
We set the date for Friday 19th June as we’d always wanted an early summer wedding. Dates at our chosen venue, The Ridings School at Calke Abbey, Derby, were quite limited so rather than change the timing of it, we opted for a Friday.
We chose The Ridings School as it was a little different from your run-of-the-mill wedding venue and was something that we could put our own stamp on.
Overall we just wanted a relaxed wedding day with a country/rustic feel to it. We also wanted to involve as many friends as possible in the planning to make it more personal.
We decided to stick to a very simple colour scheme of green and white to complement the theme.
I chose to have a fairly traditional dress, which was made Charlotte Thompson Bridal. I picked elements of different dresses which I loved and she made me a bespoke gown which I absolutely loved!
On the wedding day Claire Elizabeth did my makeup. She used an airbrush technique, which meant it stayed on all day. My hair was done brilliantly by a good friend of mine.
James Tracey was our fabulous photographer. We already knew him through friends and so we had seen his excellent work. We booked him early on to make sure he was available on our day.
All the wedding flowers were sourced and arranged by my best friend and chief bridesmaid, Claudia. We had a mixture of simple gypsophila and green roses to fit the colour scheme.
We loved the giant ‘love’ letters that we had seen about so decided to hire some for the wedding, which looked great in the photos. We also had lots of fairy lights and some decorative bits and pieces on the table.
As favours we gave our guests personalised paper bags filled with heart-shaped sweets.
We had a beautiful wedding cake which was made by my mum and multi-talented friend, Claudia. Mum made the huge bottom tier and top tier, which were fruit cake, and Claudia made the middle tiers and iced it all. I loved it!
The rest of the food on the wedding day was taken care of by Black Peppermint and was absolutely delicious.
To provide the entertainment we hired The Serious Hat Band. I had heard them before when I went to a party on the Isle of Wight. They were brilliant and kept the dance floor full all night long.
We also made our own photo booth by hiring a large frame so guests could have their photos taking whilst posing in it using a Polaroid camera. They were then asked to stick a photo in our guest book to provide memories of the day.
We would most definitely recommend our wedding venue to other couples. It’s a lot different to other venues and the staff there are brilliant. It has a great feel to it!
Looking back we couldn’t pick a favourite part of the day as we loved all of it! We didn’t stop smiling!
For our honeymoon we went to Sri Lanka and the Maldives and then stopped off at Dubai on the way home to see some friends. It was the perfect combination of destinations and we would recommend them to other couples in search of honeymoon ideas.
My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to organise the big things early on and then you can really enjoy the run up to the wedding. Also, take some time out on the wedding day to spend with your new husband.
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September 30th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
We love pink, we adore peonies and we’ve always got room for cake – these are just a few reasons why we fell head over heels for this morning’s real wedding (as we’re sure you will too) when it landed in our inbox.
Bride Caitlin wanted an elegant shabby chic feel to her big day and so teamed cute homemade decorative items with her favourite pastel tones of lemon and dusky pink.
The result is just beautiful and it’s not just the setting that looks stunning, for the wedding party themselves are pushing the bar high in the style stakes. We love the maids’ girly full-length dresses, the guys’ smart suits and of course Caitlin’s gorgeous Mori Lee lace dress, complete with a pretty bespoke belt.
With images by the fabulous Helen Russell Photography.
caitlin says: We got engaged at home, in our cosy little bungalow! Matthew decided to wine and dine me with a Chinese box from the supermarket (good job I love things like that!) and surrounded by candles he got down on one knee and popped the question! Matthew is not the type to make a scene in front of people in a posh restaurant, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way.
We set the date for Friday 10th July 2015. We were hoping it would be a perfect sunny day and luckily enough, it was!
Wynyard Hall was our chosen venue. I just loved the stately home, picturesque feel it had. The terrace out of the back had amazing views of the lake and it just felt perfect. The first time I visited I was with my mam and she loved it just as much as I did (good job Matthew liked it too!)
The theme I had in mind was a vintage, rustic, shabby chic theme. I love all things like this and we decided to make/source as many of the decorations we could ourselves. We recycled glass jars for months on end and decorated everyone differently! I made all of the save the dates, invitations, order of services and loved every minute! Not only did this keep costs down, but it also made things feel extra special.
Our colour scheme was pale lemon and dusty pink. I loved these pastel colours as I thought they were summery but classy!
I was lucky enough to find my amazing Mori Lee dress in a lovely little family run boutique called Dobinsons of Darlington. It was a beautiful mermaid style with lace detail throughout. Initially the dress had straps and I thought it didn’t suit me, however with a few changes to make it a sweetheart neckline, it was perfect! A friend of mine made my wedding belt and I wore Kurt Geiger sandals to complete my look.
Matthew wore a Paul Costello charcoal grey suit with faint checks from Slaters in Newcastle. He wanted a three piece suit with a waistcoat and wore a dusty pink tie, pocket watch and tan Ted Baker shoes!
All six of our bridesmaids wore gorgeous, floaty, one-shouldered, pale lemon dresses from Coast and the groomsmen wore charcoal suits, also from Slaters in Newcastle, with pale lemon ties and hessian flower shaped button holes.
Helen Russell was our photographer. Helen was absolutely amazing, she was the best photographer we could have asked for and made everyone feel so comfortable on the day. We loved the natural photographs Helen takes and we would 100 per cent recommend her to anyone. We had our pre wedding shoot the month before which made us so relaxed and excited for the day and are over the moon with all of our photographs!
When it came to the flowers, I carried dusty pink peonies with pale lemon roses and the bridesmaids and flower girl carried the same in smaller bouquets.
We wanted to keep with the peony theme in the décor and so used the same flowers in jugs placed on pieces of wood for the centrepieces along with rustic jars and candles. We also had single peonies and carnations in jars along the aisle and on the fireplaces at Wynyard. My family helped so much with sourcing the jars and centrepieces and made the day extra special.
For the reception we also hired chiavari chairs from The Finishing Touch Company, which made the rooms look perfect!
As favours we gave small jam jars filled with pink alcohol for the adults and filled with sweeties for the children. Also a chocolate truffle heart for an extra treat!
Our guests were also treated to an amazing cake table, made by Bernadette from Dreamworld Cakes in Newcastle. Our wedding cake had four tiers, two being Belgian chocolate and the other two being white chocolate and raspberry, it was then decorated with rustic theme in mind with peonies and raffia. We also had Baileys chocolate and Victoria sponge mini cakes, lemon and passion fruit cupcakes, cake pops and strawberry and pistachio macaroons!
For the entertainment we decided to hire wedding pianists, Daniel Ackerley and Martin Dack, who played throughout the ceremony and right through the wedding breakfast. We also had Paul Lytton who was a fantastic magician and The Ultimate Wedding DJ for the disco. As an extra special touch we also hired large ‘C & M’ letters from Coco Luminaire and a vintage photo booth from Snaparazzi.
I would recommend all of ours suppliers and also our venue to other couples. Our wedding coordinator Emily made the day go as smooth as possible and I felt confident everything would go to plan! Wynyard made our rooms look amazing and all the staff were friendly and helpful. We couldn’t have asked for a better venue!
It’s difficult to pick a favourite part of the wedding as the whole day was amazing, but I think it would be walking in to the conservatory being announced as Mr & Mrs Summerbell ready to cut the cake and have our first dance!
For our honeymoon we went to El Dorado Casitas Royale in Riveria Maya, Mexico! This place was heaven and we were so lucky so spend our honeymoon in such luxury! The restaurants were all a la carte and on the beach front, it was so relaxing and we would definitely revisit on our anniversary – one day! We are now expecting our first baby. After unexpectedly finding out on our honeymoon, we are so shocked but so excited and can’t wait for the future!
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be not to stress too much about all the tiny details leading up to the wedding, and for the groom I’d say try and help take some of this stress away from the bride! I was so worried about the room looking how I imagined however the staff at the venue were so good they made it look better than I ever could have. Brides and grooms should also try to take in as much of the day as possible as it goes so fast, enjoy every minute.
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