Charlotte Balbier

true blue. justin alexander for an eclectic wedding at the crab & lobster – ann-marie & matthew

July 16th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (31)

Today’s real wedding took place at a quirky hotel and restaurant that has a sort of anything goes feel to it with its mismatched décor and furnishings. Rather than try and impose a set theme on such an individual venue, bride and groom Ann-Marie and Matthew cleverly blended styles they love into the setting for an elegant yet eclectic wedding day.

We love the 1950s influences in the bride and maid of honour’s dresses as well as the groom’s slightly unusual pale blue suit and patterned tie combo. Elsewhere there are pretty shabby chic touches in the décor and a country garden theme running through the flowers and cake designs.

Oh, and Ann-Marie didn’t just go for one ‘something blue’ but instead lots, with a colour palette made up of varying shades of the cool hue.

With images from Michael Cartwright Photography.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (2)

ann-marie says: We got engaged on 20th April 2013 at Drybeck Farm in Cumbria. It was our anniversary weekend and Matthew had booked a weekend to Drybeck Farm as a surprise. Drybeck was our first weekend away together when we first met so Matthew thought it would be romantic to rekindle the early days. Matthew had been working during the day and came back at lunch time to get ready and go. I jokingly asked him “Have you forgotten anything? Like a ring?” to which he replied “Seriously? You do know there isn’t a ring, don’t you?” That was enough to put me off the scent.

I’d made a lamb stew to take with us that we cooked over an open fire and we sat and drank red wine and ate stew and tiger bread under the stars, wrapped in blankets. Matthew finally popped the question down on one knee on the banks of the River Eden. I of course said a massive yes!

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (3)

We decided on 24th May 2015 as our wedding date and chose The Crab & Lobster near Thirsk, North Yorkshire, as our venue. We knew the hotel and restaurant because of its reputation in fine dining but we had never been to stay before. We went to a wedding open day and suddenly everything fell into place. The gardens are beautiful and the hotel is so wonderfully quirky that we instantly fell in love with it.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (10)

We wanted our wedding to be laid back but still beautiful. One of our major turn offs with all things wedding was the ‘fake grandeur’ that is automatically pushed on brides. We also didn’t like the idea of an outright theme. We preferred just to choose all the things we liked and try to link them together. If we had to try and shoehorn our wedding into any kind of theme I suppose it would be ‘50s shabby chic, English country garden glamour’ (if that can be a theme?).

This eclectic mix of styles matches our personalities and went perfectly with the venue, which is a mismatch of all sorts of memorabilia and oddities.

We chose blue for our colour scheme. We didn’t make any decision on one particular type of blue and decided to have a wonderful mix of shades and hues that all complemented each other. We used white and ivory with a touch of peach to complement the blues. On reason for choosing blue was because of its association with luck at weddings and we thought why stop at one ‘something blue’ when it can all be blue!

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (12)

My dress was a 50s style ball gown by Justin Alexander and bought from Just Perfect at Shotton Colliery. It had a boat neckline and pleated sash waist with a small detailing of crystals and pearls. The dress was plain ivory silk and had a train. On my feet I wore peacock blue peep toe shoes from Faith, which had a T-bar encrusted in diamantes and peals.

My headpiece was custom made by The Libertarian. It was an ivory silk flower with crystals and pearls in the centre and a short 50s style veil with a sprinkling of diamantes. The crystals on the flower were my ‘something old’ and had been taken from a necklace my Grandmother left to me. My earrings were custom made by Mobeus in Hartlepool which also used the crystals from my Grandmother’s old necklace. Finally, I wore a jersey pearl bracelet that I borrowed from our daughter (she was bought it as a christening present).

On the big day, Nicholas at Hobson and Holmes in Darlington, did my hair while Jo Leversuch of Makeup by Jo, did my makeup.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (8)

Matthew wore a pale blue suit from Psyche in Middlesbrough with a coordinating dark blue tweed waistcoat from Debenhams. His shirt was plain white from M&S and shoes were brown brogues from Just Perfect Menswear at Shotton Colliery. Matthew’s tie and pocket square were from an online retailer called Dancys.

Our maid of honour wore a royal blue 50s style dress by LouLou Bridal and our flower girl wore an ivory satin and tulle ballerina style dress both bought from Just Perfect at Shotton Colliery. Their head pieces were both custom made by The Libertarian and featured handmade and custom dyed silk flowers.

The groomsmen all wore a suit of their choice with white M&S shirts and ties from Dancys. Our page boys wore pale blue linen suites from Next with coordinating bow-ties from Dancys.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (24)

Michael of Michael Cartwright Photography took our photographs. Michael is an old school friend of mine so we knew that we would be hiring a photographer that could put us at ease and who knew our personalities and tastes. Michael did a fantastic job of capturing the day without lots of posed or staged photos that will age and go out of fashion. We have ended up with a wonderful pictorial story of our day that will stand the test of time. Michael was a true professional and was so great at taking candid photos. We hardly even knew he was there throughout the day but we still got more than 1,000 pictures to choose from.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (32)

I carried a bouquet of wild and garden flowers in a range of blue and lavender tones including forget-me-nots, scabious, cornflowers, roses, lisianthus. They were tied with a bow with long tendrils of multi-coloured ribbons in different widths and textures. The brief to the florist was that I wanted to look like I had walked through a beautiful meadow and country garden and collected my flowers on the way to the ceremony – they did not disappoint.

The flowers were from Flowerhouse in Hartburn, Stockton-on-Tees which until recently was my brother’s business which he and my mum started more than ten years ago. Ever since I was small I have grown up around flowers and flower shops as my mum has been an award winning florist for 50 years. I knew from being a little girl that the most special thing was for my mum to do my wedding flowers and with the help of the staff at Flowerhouse that wish came true and the flowers were spectacular!

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (54)

Our table decorations were lots of smaller bunches of flowers using the same flowers as my bouquet. These were in jam jars which I decorated with ribbons and lace. Again the flowers were from Flowerhouse. We also decorated the tables with smaller jars with tea lights in them and set the table settings with sprigs of lavender and corn from Shropshire Petals, who also supplied our confetti.

I made all the decorations for the day including a number of hand painted signs and more than 30 metres of bunting as well as burlap signs and ribbon wands for the little people to carry. Instead of a guestbook I also made a hand painted canvas which everyone could write their messages on which has given us a beautiful momentum of the day.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (47)

As favours, each guest was given a packet of forget-me-not seeds from Not on the High Street. Due to the huge number of flowers at the wedding, each couple also got to take home a jar of fresh flowers at the end of the night.

We chose a three tier cake with a different flavour for each tier – fruit, chocolate and vanilla. A friend of ours (Jenny) made the cakes and a friend of my mum’s iced them for us. It was decorated with fresh flowers from Flowerhouse and a bunting cake topper from Beautiful Greys, a shop on Facebook.

Additionally we had a cheese and pork pie wedding cake from Earls Cheese Wedding Cakes in Stockton, which doubled as our evening buffet. This was topped with bride and groom mice from Cotton Reel Crafts. We served the wedding cake on the evening as dessert.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (49)

To keep guests entertained we had a jazz duo welcoming everyone to the ceremony and then playing in the gardens afterward. They were the Crab and Lobster resident musicians, Muttonchops, and were a fantastic addition to our day. During the ceremony Matthew’s brother, Robbie, and my friend Angela gave a rendition of Songbird by Oasis which was very special to us. On the evening we decided to have a jukebox instead of a DJ. That way the dancefloor was always full because the music was chosen by the guests.

To make the day all the more special we added a few individual touches, including inviting our guests to take part in a competition at The Crab and Lobster’s one-hole golf course to win a bottle of bubbles. It was a fun little addition and everyone had a go at getting their ball closest to the flag.

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (70)

We would recommend all of our suppliers, they each provided exactly what we wished for and were full of professionalism. We would also definitely recommend our venue to other couples. It was so fantastic in every way. The staff were wonderfully attentive and understood our vision from the outset and ensured that everything went swimmingly. They were very willing for us to completely take over and decorate everything in sight and change things around as we saw fit. The wedding coordinator, John Lacey, was fantastic and couldn’t do enough for us – from helping me to change my shoes, to standing up ladders hanging bunting, carving up enormous pork pies and helping our daughter up and down the patio steps.

I don’t think we could pick a favourite part of the day as it was all absolutely amazing. That said, our highlights would include; seeing each other for the first time, spending an entire day with all the people we love and dancing the night away to a plethora of retro tunes!

An Eclectic Wedding at The Crab & Lobster (c) Michael Cartwright Photography (72)

For our honeymoon we had four nights at Peacock Pavilions just outside of Marrakech in Morocco. It was a wonderfully relaxing break full of delicious food and exploration. We were fully spoilt at Peacock Pavilions with private dining in a hand painted Berber tent, a private screening of Casablanca in an outdoor cinema with cocktails and a bridal henna party for me. No stone was unturned at this wonderful quirky little oasis. Pure bliss!

My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to start early! If you are anything like us and want to do a lot of work yourself or are interested in the finer details you need as much time as possible. We spent two years planning and it was only just enough time. We had an amazing day and all of the extra effort, hard work and sometimes stress was worth it all for the perfect amazing day.continue reading

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Super Quirky Gorgeous! A Real Wedding In North Yorkshire – Edwina & Adam

December 3rd, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Dominic Wright Photography-North Yorkshire Wedding Photographer

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I’m spending most of my day in trains and automobiles today as I head North of the Border for some exciting meetings about bringing the Brides Up North magic to my lovely Scottish readers in person (hello you, sorry it’s taken so long!), as well as catching up with some of my favourite suppliers in that part of the country.

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My family has a strong Scottish heritage (my Mum was born and raised just outside of and my parents met and married whilst working in an Edinburgh hotel) so I always feel like a trip even further North is a little like coming home.  I’ve packed plenty of Winter woolies (as well as a dash of sparkle) for the two day trip and I can’t wait to feel that bracing wind blowing the colour back into my cheeks.

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So, have laptop, will travel, and will look forward to sharing some news soon…

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In the meantime, I wouldn’t go gallivanting without leaving you without something extra special to pour over.  Step forward Edwina & Adam and their absolutely stunning Real Wedding at the wonderful Crab Manor Hotel in North Yorkshire, with images by the disgustingly talented Dominic Wright Photography (a Brides Up North Featured Supplier no less!).

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Edwina says: We got engaged in La Carla, Spain in February 2011 on a surprise Valentine’s weekend

Adam took me to his parents house and proposed to me there. I didn’t have a clue.

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We were married at Crab Manor, Asenby, Thirsk on Wednesday 5th September 2012.  We loved

how different and quirky it was with beautiful gardens and amazing themed rooms.

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We opted for a cream and midnight blue theme. 

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I chose a Justin Alexander oyster pearl lace dress which came up to the neck and was fitted into the waist with an oyster pearl satin band round the middle which went into a fishtail . It was from Blissful Daze, Sheffield. Such amazing staff and a top class shop.

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Victoria Farr Hair & Make Up Specialist did my hair and make up.   

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My bridesmaids wore midnight blue dresses from Coast which were knee length with lace detail at the top.

The groomsmen wore a three piece handmade midnight blue suits made by King & Allen.

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I carried a bouquet of cream roses hand tied with oyster pearl organza material, lined with pearls and feathers.

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We had a harpist throughout the ceremony. A flamenco guitarist played after the wedding breakfast and a jazz band joined us for the evening.

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We dressed the ceremony room with extra white flowers and had black organza bows tied round the chairs. For the wedding breakfast we had white chair covers with white bows.

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The best part of the day was walking down the isle and seeing all of my lovely friends and family and then seeing my amazing man at the end of the aisle. In fact the whole day was my favourite part!

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We looked at many photographers and Dominic and Zoe of Dominic Wright Photography just stood out. Such lovely guys we had so much fun with them. They made us feel very special and our images are just stunning. I would highly recommend them.

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I went to the venue the day before in my dads 1960 Red Lotus Elise.  Super cool. 

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The cake was made of layers cheese with a heart shaped one (and two little wedding mice) on top.

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After the wedding we went to Phuket in Thailand and stayed at the Kata Tani in South Kata.  It was such a beautiful place with such lovely people.

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My tip tip for other Brides Up North would be to take in every part of the day and treasure every moment. It is the most amazing day of your life. Don’t worry about minor details the most important thing is about two people who love each other getting married.

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HEARTCongratulations Edwina & Adam! HEART

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North.  Here’s how to do it!

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  – Images © 2012 Dominic Wright Photography

Dominic Wright 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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Queen Of The Castle! A Real Wedding In Yorkshire – Grace & Tony

July 12th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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Today’s breathtakingly beautiful Real Wedding, sent to me by real bride Grace and Steve Ramsden Photography, caught my interest as soon as it landed in my inbox.  That’s because Allerton Castle is one of the fabulous venues that I work with in Yorkshire to host the Brides Up North Wedding Exclusives events for all you lovely brides to be.

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I think once you see today’s wedding, you’ll be wanting to put the date of our next show in your diaries to come along too!

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The Brides Up North Wedding Exclusive at Allerton Castle

Allerton Park, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire

Sunday 16th September 2012

12pm – 4pm

FREE ENTRY

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Click here to register for your free VIP Bride-To-Be Goody Bag and speedy entry. 

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This is your exclusive invitation to a day of bridal brilliance at North Yorkshire’s most desirable wedding venue! As well as the Dine team hosting venue tours, over 30 of the regions finest bridal suppliers will be in attendance to inspire and advise – everything from flowers, to bridal fashion to photobooths – only the best will do!

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I’ll see you there, and in the meantime, enjoy today’s stunning celebration. 

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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Grace says:  We got engaged in January 2011 at the Crab and Lobster, Asenby just before I went to Spain to ride in the Spanish Sunshine Tour for eight weeks.

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We were married on 12th May 2012 at St Marys Church at Myton on Swale, the first wedding at the church for nine years, with our reception at Allerton Castle near Knaresborough, North Yorkshire.  Allerton Castle was the first venue we looked at and no where else compared, it was just amazing, a fairytale castle.

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We didn’t have a particular theme and just wanted something simple but traditional.  The colours that we chose were ivory with touches of red. 

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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I chose an ivory tulle dress from Andrea Bambridge of York with a long train of tulle, and flowers scattered across the bodice and skirt. I wore a veil and tiara previously worn by my sister Charlotte who was married six years ago and gorgeous Swarovski shoes by Gina.

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My four adult bridesmaids wore red Anoushka G dresses from House of Frazer, and our four flowergirls wore ivory dresses with a red bow on the back.  Our pageboy who was two wore an ivory suit with a waistcoat but he decided he wanted to be like the girls so he wore one of the flowergirls’ cardigans during the ceremony!

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The other guys wore traditional outfits by York Suit Hire

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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The church service was the most emotional and nervous part of the day and meant the most because our marriage is really what the day was about.  

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Vocalis Choir of Harrogate sang in the church.  Amongst other songs they performed ‘I Will Follow Him’ originally sung by the choir and Whoopi Goldberg in Sister Act.

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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I carried a traditional shower bouquet of David Austin Patience Roses and Calla Lilies, and Dendrobium OrchidS.  My adult bridesmaids’ carried natural hand-tied bouquets of red roses and the flowergirls carried hearts decorated with Dendrobium Orchids, all provided by Elise Flowers. Two of the hearts are now hanging at either side of the fireplace as a momentum of the day. There were arrangements of flowers inside the church and there was an arch of flowers over the church door. At Allerton Castle table decorations were also provided by Elise Flowers and the staircase was decorated with ivy, fairylights and storm lanterns, and a wishing tree was placed in the conservatory.  This has now been planted as a reminder of our day.

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A chimney sweep – Pete the Sweep – attended to wish us luck!  This is a tradition derived 200 years ago when King George II was riding his horse in a royal procession when without warning a stray dog began nipping the legs of the King’s horse causing it to rear up and the King lost control. As the crowd looked on in horror, a chimney sweep came from the crowd, regained control of the horse and returned to the crowd. After the procession the King was unable to thank the sweep personally for his bravery so he decreed that from that day onwards all chimney sweeps should be considered lucky.

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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We travelled to Allerton Castle in an amazing 1950 Rolls Royce Silver Wraith, provided by Superior Motor Cars. 

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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Dine at Allerton Castle looked after us so well all day – coordinating the whole wedding and providing all the catering.

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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Our cake was provided by a family friend and was seven tiers which were all different, fruit cake, carrot cake, chocolate cake, with the top layers being sponge cake. 

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography   An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography   An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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During the drinks reception Pure Silk Jazz played to entertain 90 guests followed by Sounds Familiar, a local band from Tollerton, who played during the meal and then Pure Silk Cutz played in the evening.

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Our first dance was a waltz, with a few twists and turns, to Take That’s Rule the World.  We rehearsed our first dance with The Butterfly School of Dance in Thirsk. 

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After the wedding, we honeymooned in Goa in India for fifteen nights and stayed in the Taj Exotica Hotel, with miles of beach to ourselves before returning to rainy Yorkshire.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to stand back and look, see what is going on around you and take it all in, it goes so fast.

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An Allerton Castle Wedding by Steve Ramsden Photography

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HEARTCongratulations Grace & Tony! HEART

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Are you newly wed?  Contact me to share your Real Wedding memories with Brides Up North.

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  – Images © 2012 Steve Ramsden Photography

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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To The Manor Born! A Real Wedding, Fay & Nick

March 24th, 2011 | Julia Braime

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Brand spanking new Featured Supplier photographer Dirk Van Der Werff wasted no time in sending Brides Up North this awesome Real Wedding in North Yorkshire. Fay and Nick’s wedding was held at The Crab and Lobster at Asenby, near Topcliffe last summer.  The Crab Manor Hotel is really cool (one of Brides Up North’s faves!) – the gorgeous bedrooms are modelled on famous hotels around the world, like Raffles in Singapore! Famous rooms and perfect weddings indeed.

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Dirk Van Der Werff

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Dirk says: I just try to blend in with family and friends, often meeting parents before the day to build a relationship, so that on the day, there’s no surprises, and we’re not strangers!

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Want to see your Real Wedding on Brides Up North?  Get in touch! 

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Dirk Van Der Werff is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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