Charlotte Balbier

real wedding recap summer 2017: pronovias for a chic city wedding in liverpool – niamh & pete

July 1st, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Chic City Wedding in Liverpool (c) Starwinkle Photography (36)

It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely. Usual service will recommence on Monday 3rd July 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from the first half of the year so far. 

Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your real wedding was one of our top picks.

Today’s real wedding bride, Niamh, says that her only theme for her and Pete’s city centre wedding in Liverpool was “things we like”.

All we can say here at Bride Up North is that it’s a theme that really works. Led by instinct, Niamh opted for a hint of 1920s decadence with her beaded bridesmaid dresses and a timeless clean-cut Pronovias gown with statement red lips.

Liverpool is a significant place for this gorgeous couple, and their photographs make it clear why – see how many stunning views, famous landmarks and cheeky references to this fabulous city you can spot.

With images by Starwinkle Photography.

A Chic City Wedding in Liverpool (c) Starwinkle Photography (32)

niamh says: We got engaged in July 2013 in London. I‘d just turned 27 and Pete and I returned to London (where we used to live) for a night out with friends to celebrate. The following morning we set off for a day out in the glorious sunshine. We put together an amazing picnic and headed up to Primrose Hill, just the two of us. True to form, I fell asleep in the sunshine on the hill, and when I awoke we had to hotfoot it to Piccadilly for dinner – Pete had booked a table at Sketch, a fave restaurant, as a birthday treat.

En route, he suggested we take a detour to Green Park; another old haunt from our London days.  It was a really warm evening and the park was beginning to empty out – there were just a few people left catching the last rays.  We walked together under the trees; it was really beautiful, no one else around, and the light dappled through the trees. The next bit is all a blur…

Pete is one of the sweetest boys you will ever meet, not one for big ostentatious gestures. He’s incredibly thoughtful and charmingly clumsy and cries at X Factor.  As he walked along he began to tell me how much he loved me – he dropped down onto two knees, asked me to marry him, fumbled with his backpack and then produced the most beautiful antique sapphire and diamond ring.

It was so surreal, I couldn’t believe what was happening. All I remember was dropping to the floor with him, both of us on two knees and saying “are you you really doing this?”, and both of us teary-eyed kneeling in the grass. Then Pete said, “you haven’t said yes or no,” and I shouted “yes!”

It was perfect.  I had absolutely no idea and the element of surprise was the best thing.  It was so simple, no big fancy holiday, just a summer day out with my favourite person.

A Chic City Wedding in Liverpool (c) Starwinkle Photography (33)

We were married on Saturday 25th April 2015.  We ‘d always talked about having a spring wedding. We decided to get married in Liverpool where we met at Uni in 2006, as it’s a city that means a lot to both of us and our families. So that was it – we went back to where it all began.

We both lived on Catharine Street at Uni in Liverpool’s Georgian Quarter.  Although we wanted a fun, different, quirky personalised wedding, it was also important to us to have all of our family and friends there and to say our vows in church.  There’s a small church on Catharine St, St Phillip Neri. We explained to the priest that we loved Liverpool and it was where we’d met and he agreed to marry us!

A Chic City Wedding in Liverpool (c) Starwinkle Photography (23)

My mum was diagnosed with terminal cancer two months after we got engaged so in the months leading up to the wedding there were ups and downs. Thankfully, she was there on the day and was in great spirits.  For so many reasons, our wedding was just the most incredible celebration of life, love and happiness. She made it her goal to be there and she was, she was well and it was brilliant. Some of mine and many others’ lasting memories of her will be her having the time of her life at our wedding.

We chose Oh Me Oh My as the venue for the reception. From the moment we stepped foot inside we fell in love with it.  The stunning high ceilings, natural light, quirky vintage furniture, fairy-lit balcony, incredible roof garden and beautiful views of Liverpool’s iconic Liver Building: it was just perfect. Cafe by day and events/exhibition venue by evening/weekend.  Then we met Katie, who was so warm and friendly and her enthusiasm and passion for the venue was palpable. She listened to our ideas and suggested amazing ones of her own and made us feel as if anything was possible.

A Chic City Wedding in Liverpool (c) Starwinkle Photography (30)

Our only theme was ‘things we like’. We both really like old things and bright colours, so there was a bit of that! We decorated the venue with brightly coloured pom poms and tassle garlands.  I made a polaroid timeline with pictures of me and Pete which were punctuated by coloured paper doilies.

We hired a candyfloss and popcorn stand as the canapes with reception drinks. We also had pick and mix and personalised football accumulators bets as the favours.

We didn’t really have an ‘official’ colour scheme, either.  The bridesmaids wore silvery grey, the boys wore navy and then venue was filled with bright coloured and gold paper decorations fairy and candle light. The reception venue was a big blank space, with high ceilings and beautiful natural light and carefully picked quirky pieces.  We decided to embrace this and add more of our own.

We filled a glass cabinet with our parents and grandparents’ wedding photos. We decorated the balcony as a ‘games area’, including Subbuteo, a game called ‘Pucket’ and DIY photo booth. I made bunting out of Trivial pursuit cards to mark out the games area as Pete is a massive trivia/useless information fan!

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real wedding recap summer 2017: a 1920s style wedding at kelham island museum, sheffield – sara & ryan

June 26th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

1920s Wedding at Kelham Island (c) Stu Ganderton (45)

It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely. Usual service will recommence on Monday 3rd July 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from the first half of the year so far. 

Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your real wedding was one of our top picks.

The stars of today’s post, Sara and Ryan, chose to have an entirely black and white wedding album to reflect the beautiful moments of their 1920s style big day.

Their photographer, Stu Ganderton explains: “I give all my clients a full colour version of their images and a limited black and white version. I always edit my black and white differently to the colour set, usually a lot more emotive and edgy. Sara and Ryan chose the albums for the parents in colour, but their album was entirely black and white. They felt it was more arty and creative, different and edgy. It also fits immensely well with the theme of the day. I shot virtually the entire day without interrupting Sara and Ryan’s day, so everything is very natural and all real moments. The only time I intervened was for the night shots right at the very end, and this was literally ten minutes. I find that keeping a couple in their comfort zone generates very real and honest images of their day which have a timeless quality to them.”

And we couldn’t agree more! While Sara and Ryan may look like the lead roles in an old romantic Hollywood movie, there’s nothing contrived about their beautiful big day, it’s both honest and opulent from beginning to end!

With images by Stu Ganderton Photography.

1920s Wedding at Kelham Island (c) Stu Ganderton (18)

sara says: We got engaged on New Year’s Eve in 2014 while we were away in Verona. Ryan had planned a grand proposal in front of the amphitheatre but we ended up getting engaged in the hotel room while in our PJs playing Scrabble!

We set the wedding date for 10th December 2016. We chose this date as we love winter and this would give us enough time to get married and have a honeymoon before Christmas.

1920s Wedding at Kelham Island (c) Stu Ganderton (33)

We chose the quirky Kelham Island Museum in Sheffield for our wedding venue and were able to have both the ceremony and reception in the same place.

1920s Wedding at Kelham Island (c) Stu Ganderton (46)

Our theme was 1920s – it’s such a glam era! To work with this styling and also the winter season, we had a black, gold and red colour scheme.

1920s Wedding at Kelham Island (c) Stu Ganderton (60)

I chose a fitting Maggie Sottero gown for my wedding day attire. It was a sleek design and champagne in colour, which was perfect for the theme.

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real wedding recap summer 2017: pronovias for a contemporary wedding in lake como – emma & glen

June 19th, 2017 | Rachel Parry

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It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely. Usual service will recommence on Monday 3rd July 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from the first half of the year so far. 

Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your real wedding was one of our top picks.

Prepare for take-off as we’re leaving the north of the UK behind today and jetting off to Lake Como in Italy to relive the utterly gorgeous big day of Cheshire-couple, Emma and Glen.

Everything about this wedding says style, class and romance; from the insanely beautiful location to the wedding party’s stunning attire and the lavish speed-boat transport.

It’s all be captured perfectly by Ally M Photography, and we have to say that Emma and Glen work the camera like pure pros!

With images by Ally M Photography

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emma says: We got engaged during a surprise trip to Venice in October 2015, and the proposal was as romantic as it gets. Glen got down on one knee on a gondola boat in Venice through the inner canals of the city with a photographer, videographer and finished with a pre-arranged candlelight dinner and my favourite white roses.

We specifically selected the 26th July 2016, to get married as it’s an extra special day for the family. It was my mum’s birthday and we wanted to include her in the day as much as we could. Unfortunately, she passed away five years ago, but we know she was there in spirit on the day.

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After the proposal, we fell in love with Italy and so chose a venue on the beautiful Lake Como to hold the wedding at. Our venue, Relais Villa Vittoria, was an Italian villa on the edge of the lake overlooking the mountains. We hired the whole villa and had close friends and family stay there with us for four days. The weather was so beautiful on the day!

We wanted a modern, contemporary wedding. We kept the wedding classy with a James Bond twist – Glen arrived by speed boat but would have chosen to sky dive if he could have! At 11pm a yacht picked the wedding party up and we partied on the lake until the early hours.

Our colour scheme was made up of natural whites, light blues and silvers. I love white roses and as Glen included them in his proposal to me, they have an extra special meaning and so had to be included in the wedding.

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For my wedding dress, I wanted something that resembled a glamourous evening gown but that wasn’t too heavy with it being so hot. I still wanted something that was magical though so I made sure it had a long train. I chose an off white, Pronovias 2017 collection dress.

Glen meanwhile, had his suit made by a company called Signature Bespoke, whose suits are handmade in Italy.

My lovely bridesmaids wore dresses from Coast.

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Ally M Photography was our chosen photographer for the wedding. Ally and his fiancée Lucy, were just brilliant and captured the perfect moments!

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sweets for my sweet. afternoon tea for an pretty wedding at the ashes – bethan & jacob

April 7th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

A Pretty Wedding at The Ashes (c) Corneli Fleur Photography (52)

We’re committed to upping your daily dose of pretty here at Brides Up North (I know, I know, it’s a tough job but someone’s gotta do it!) and this morning’s offering is no different.

Prepare thyself for Bethan and Jacob’s afternoon tea extravaganza of gorgeousness. After Jacob proposed at an ice cream farm (is there a more perfect engagement location out there? Methinks not) this super-sweet couple opted for a relaxed big day at The Ashes in Leek. There were wildflowers everywhere, jams and chutneys, floral prints, origami, sweetie jars and a surprise rendition of Summer Lovin’ from Grease.

In fact, today’s real wedding is so sweet that these photos from Corneli Fleur may well leave you on a sugar high. Enjoy…

A Pretty Wedding at The Ashes (c) Corneli Fleur Photography (37)

bethan says: We got engaged at Snugbury’s Ice Cream Farm in Cheshire. Back when we were 17 and had been best friends for a number of years, we went on a friend-date to Snugburys, got some ice cream and walked through the fields nearby. It was here that we realised we had feelings for each other, so Jacob brought me back to the same spot to propose. We had a picnic underneath a tree he climbed that day and he put the ring box in a muffin tray. I turned around and he was on one knee holding out the tray with the ring box in it. He smiled and said “I was wondering if you’d like to be Mrs Taylor”. Our engagement wasn’t necessarily one of those super-glamorous stories you read about in bridal magazines; it was awkward and fumbly and neither of us really knew what to do afterwards (except run away from the rain that was fast approaching), but it was us and I wouldn’t change it.

We got married on 30th July. We fell in love with our venue as soon as we saw it, so had to find an available date. One of my bridesmaids was also getting married that summer, so that restricted us too. We could have gone slightly earlier in July but it was really important for us to be able to have children there.

A Pretty Wedding at The Ashes (c) Corneli Fleur Photography (70)

The ceremony happened at our church in Crewe, West Street Christian Fellowship. We didn’t even really discuss that as it was kind of a given. As Christians, it was important to us to get married in church, and West Street is our home where our church family are based. It wouldn’t have felt right doing it anywhere else.

The reception venue was The Ashes in Leek. We knew we wanted a barn and completely fell in love with The Ashes as soon as we saw it. The venue itself is amazing and the grounds are beautiful. Jane was the staff member who showed us round and she was so nice and not at all funny about us being 21 at the time (some people had been!) She got to be with us on the day too, which was lovely.

A Pretty Wedding at The Ashes (c) Corneli Fleur Photography (55)

We didn’t really have a theme, although my dress and Jacob’s suit had a kind of accidental 1920s vibe about them. We didn’t have a colour-scheme either – neither of us were really fans of the whole colour scheme ‘thing’ so we went with vintage-y shades (no reds or strong colours).

My dress was kind of 1920s in style, a mix of satin/silk and silk chiffon with some sparkly details. I didn’t give myself a massive dress budget – only £500 – so I didn’t go to any boutique shops for fear of falling in love with a dress way over budget. I went to a wedding dress outlet with my mum, sister and mother-in-law-to-be and was in a bit of a state when we arrived. I was so scared of not liking anything that I just couldn’t look. My mother-in-law asked me to pick out any dresses that had something I liked (sleeves, shape etc) and just try them on, even if it was just to rule out certain styles.

I picked my dress because I loved that the straps were made of gemstones. When I tried it on I honestly felt amazing – like a 1920s movie star, or a passenger on the Titanic. I knew I was a young bride and wanted something that was individual; something I hadn’t seen before. It had to be my ‘Titantic’ dress.

A Pretty Wedding at The Ashes (c) Corneli Fleur Photography (13)

Jacob wore a suit from Next, with a shirt and bow tie from Topman. His brown shoes were from Next as well. We went together to choose his suit and he loved the vibrant blue of the one he chose, the contrasting lapels and the 1920s vibe.

Jacob had six official ushers who all wore matching suits from Burton; they were like navy versions of Jacob’s blue suit, and also had darker lapels. Our dads also wore the same suits. Jacob’s little brother (six at the time) wore a similar suit but a mini version, obviously!

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pronovias perfection. blush & gold for an elegant wedding at oulton hall – abbie & darren

February 3rd, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

An Elegant Wedding at Oulton Hall (c) Belle & Beau Photography (30)

Today we are welcoming Abbie and Darren back to the blog to share their big day with us, having previously shared their sweet engagement shoot on our pretty pages.

This wedding is a lesson in luxe styling – there’s a pair of Valentino Rockstuds softened by some perfect floral detailing, romantic calligraphy and plenty of gold and blush accents.

Quite frankly, Abbie and Darren’s big day at Leeds’ stunning venue Oulton Hall, gives us goosebumps.

Today’s mantra? Go gorgeous, or go home.

With images by Belle and Beau Fine Art Photography.

An Elegant Wedding at Oulton Hall (c) Belle & Beau Photography (35)

abbie says: We got engaged in Santorini in June 2014; it was just perfect. Darren presented me with a gorgeous princess cut diamond ring, which was exactly what I wanted. Our engagement shoot was featured on Brides Up North last year.

Our wedding date was Saturday 30th July 2016. We chose this date because we wanted a summer weekend wedding, plus it means we get to celebrate our anniversary in summer – who wouldn’t want that? I’d always wanted a string quartet at our wedding and had pictured them playing outside while our guests enjoyed the summer weather and drinks. Amazingly, it was a beautiful summer day and the dream became the reality!

An Elegant Wedding at Oulton Hall (c) Belle & Beau Photography (27)

We got married at Oulton Hall in Leeds. I’ve always loved this venue as it has the modern décor I adore while still having the charm of an older building. We also loved the courtyard which turned out to be perfect for the drinks reception.

The style of our wedding was elegant and romantic, with lots of floral patterning, blush and gold tones and lots of white. I love these colours and Darren let me run away with my ideas for the colour scheme!

An Elegant Wedding at Oulton Hall (c) Belle & Beau Photography (20)

I choose a Pronovias gown called Duende from Bridal Rogue Gallery in Harrogate. After trying on probably around 20 dresses, I just knew this was the one. I hadn’t wanted tulle to start off with – in fact, I had my heart set on a lace fishtail gown. However, after lots and lots of trying on, I still couldn’t find one to fit the bill. My dress was the perfect mix of tulle and lace and I customised it to make it perfectly ‘me’ – it originally had feathers! I also wore a pair of Valentino nude rockstud heels – man, I love those shoes! I also wore a pair of diamond earrings that were gifted to me by Darren the morning of the wedding.

Darren wore a dark navy suit from French Connection with a navy bow tie. He wore a pair of brown Ted Baker shoes to complement the suit. I know I’m biased, but he looked so handsome!

Our bridesmaids wore fitted fishtail blush dresses from Coast. I wanted my bridal party to feel gorgeous and they got lots and lots of compliments on the day.

An Elegant Wedding at Oulton Hall (c) Belle & Beau Photography (49)

The makeup artists for the bridal party was Frankie of Makeup by Frankie. I would recommend her wholeheartedly to any bride. My sister was so nervous about having her makeup done but Frankie put her completely at ease and my sister was delighted with the result. We also used a brilliant hairdresser, Bridget of Hair One located in Ossett. Again, I’d recommend Bridget to any bride-to-be.

Our groomsmen and both fathers wore navy suits from Slaters with navy ties – we wanted them to match but make sure that Darren stood out. It all ended up looking perfect.

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summer skies. an elegant wedding in cheshire – emma & george

December 13th, 2016 | Laura McDonagh

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Today’s real wedding couple were married at The Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa in Cheshire, surrounded by family and friends.

Emma and George’s big day was all about the pretty, with a sunny yellow colour scheme, a gorgeous bouquet of roses and daisies and some beautiful woodland detailing.

And a golf-buggy excursion around the hotel grounds really paid off – those romantic cornfield and glorious summer sky shots are, we think you’ll agree, to die for.

With images by James Andrew Photography.

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emma says: George proposed while we were on holiday last year in the Dominican Republic. He took me out on a sailing boat one afternoon and as we were relaxing on the open sea, he started to talk about how much he loved me. I was stunned when he then produced a ring which he’d hidden on a piece of string tied around his neck! It was amazing to have that moment, just the two of us out at sea. And I said yes without hesitation, of course!

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We chose the date of 25th June 2016 to get married. We’d been together for ten years and so I didn’t want to have to wait very long to get hitched. We chose June for the possibility of nice weather and wanted to get married on a Saturday so that all our loved ones could make it.

Our venue was the MacDonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa in Tarporley, Cheshire. We’d looked at five venues in Cheshire and wrote down allof the pros and cons as we went. This was really useful in making our final decision.

We didn’t want to spend an absolute fortune on the wedding and when we saw the package that the Portal were offering, it ticked all of the boxes – plus they had some of the extras we were looking for with other venues. The fact that it was a hotel was also perfect for us as some of our guests were travelling from different parts of the country. It was close enough to home for those who wanted a taxi at the end of the night, plus it had a great mix of indoor and outdoor space in case the weather was less than glorious. Some of the other venues we had shortlisted had amazing outdoor space, but the alternative indoor wedding space needed updating. We couldn’t risk booking a venue like that as rain could have thrown everything off!

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The theme developed as we began planning. Yellow has always been my favourite colour, and so I chose it for the bridesmaids’ dresses. The yellow colour scheme followed into the flowers and, using Pinterest, I found I had a love for wooden elements as table decorations etc. This led to the use of brown card for table place cards and favours. We really had no idea what it would all look like together but it really turned out well!

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Finding my dress was thanks to the wonderful Tracy Hollinshead at Cherish Bridal in Northwich, Cheshire. Tracy was just amazing from start to finish. After describing my likes and dislikes and some input from my bridesmaids, she produced ‘the one’! The dress was a classic style, with a boat neck and delicate detailing from the waist up.

George and the groomsmen wore grey tailcoat suits with silver patterned waistcoats and lemon cravats to tie in with the theme. The suits were from John at Top That Suit Hire, Hartford, Cheshire.

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