September 3rd, 2014 | Julia Braime
It’s a small, small World.
In today’s wedding feature, our bride Jude marries a man from the other side of the globe next to the green in the village where she grew up. There’s something kinda special about that, isn’t there?
Now who has the Disney theme to “It’s A Small World” on loop in their head? Yes me too, so sorry about that.
With images by Walker & Walker Photography.
Jude says: We decided that we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together and share our happiness with our friends and family. We began planning our wedding in 2013.
We were married on Saturday 7th of June 2014 at 4pm. The ceremony was in Brandesburton Methodist Church. We had wedding photos taken on Brandesburton village green, with the the 12 century stone cross and my family home in the background. The reception was held at The Bell Hotel in nearby Driffield.
I wanted to get married in Brandesburton Methodist Church because I was christened there. It is a 1930′s Art Deco chapel. The Bell Hotel is an 18th century coaching inn and former corn exchange in Driffield, a few miles from Brandesburton. Brad is Australian; there are few buildings in Australia that particularly old, so he loves historic English places. The Bell, with its beautifully restored oak panelled bars and antiques in every corner, ticked that box. It was very good value for money, which was also a consideration.
My dress had a huge satin bow in around the middle which stretched along the length of my train. The pale green colour of the bow was echoed in the bridesmaids dresses, men’s cravats and ribbons on the decorations. The shade was also picked up in the flower arrangements, which featured eucalyptus leaves to remind Brad of the trees back home in Australia.
My dress was bright white: a strapless satin bodice with a tulle skirt. It was entirely plain apart from the long green bow. It was from TKMaxx Online. Brad wore a black tailcoat, grey striped trousers and a silver waistcoat with a pale green cravat. They were hired from an online outfitters, Formally Yours. He topped of the outfit with a traditional top hat.
My Maid of Honour, Helen, wore a pale green dress from BHS with matching bolero. Our little bridesmaid, Madeleine, wore a flower girl dress from an online outlet. The Best Man, Warren, wore a tailcoat that matched Brad’s.
I carried a bouquet of eucalyptus, gypsophila and white roses by Judith Tait Flowers.
During the service, a choir of four friends sang Bernstein’s ‘Make Our Garden Grow’ from the musical Candide, and ‘A Clare Benediction’ by John Rutter. They were accompanied by professional musical director Mark Warman. It was an ethereal sound, giving the ceremony a heavenly feel.
When we came out of the church we saw that some people from the village had come to wish us well, which was very touching. It meant a lot to me that so many of those who had watched me grow up came to watch me get married. This was my favourite part of the day.
Our cake was made by my Auntie Averil. It was three tiers of rich fruit cake with traditional royal icing, finished with ribbon to match the colour scheme and fresh flowers.
The stationery we used was all brown manila; it was easy to match and inexpensive. We used brown luggage tags for the ‘save the dates,’ place names and the seating plan.
For wedding favours, we had M&Ms printed with our names and a little photograph of us. We put them in little heart-shaped boxes.
I lived in Scotland for five years and whilst there I fell in love with ceilidh dancing. Hessle Ceilidh Band had an excellent caller to guide the English and Australian wedding guests through the dances. It encouraged people who didn’t know each other to mix together and the live music added to the party atmosphere.
We had a mini-moon at Redworth Hall Hotel in County Durham. We travelled to Australia to celebrate our marriage with Brad’s family in August, before going on to explore Borneo for two weeks.
My top tip for other Brides Up North is to practice mindfulness on your wedding day. It’s a way of focussing your attention on individual moments derived from Buddhism. Your wedding day is a packed 24 hours and passes so quickly – it’s easy for it to fly past in a blur. Every now and again, take a screen shot of your emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring at that moment. For example, I took a mental picture of exactly how I felt as I was stood in my parents’ front room in my wedding dress, about to leave for the church. It’s a memory I’ll treasure forever.
August 5th, 2014 | Julia Braime
Weddings are all about the people in them and at them, no matter the budget, theme or styling. Amy and Carl wanted an understated celebration surrounded by their nearest and dearest and with a little help from their families, that was exactly what they got.
Fuss free and fabulous.
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Fairclough Photography.
Amy says: We first got together in 2009, then split up for a little while. We both went out to the same village pub for New Years Eve 2011 and got back together. When we went out together back to the same village pub for New Year a year later he proposed. We all went outside to do the countdown and he got down on one knee. While everyone else was holding hands and singing we were getting engaged!
We were married on July 14th 2014. We had our ceremony at Patrington Church, also known as the Queen of Holderness. Its our village parish and we have both grown up around it. I sang in the choir there for a short time as a child, and my primary school is a Church of England school so harvest festivals and nativities were held there through growing up, and now our son goes to the same primary school. Friends and family have their christenings and weddings there often which made it even more special for us.
We had our reception at The Gardener’s Country Inn, we wanted some where family friendly where everyone could relax, have fun and enjoy themselves. Gardeners have a lovely little play area where children can go so with having 11 children at our wedding reception it was perfect.
Over the course of planning the wedding our style choices varied so much, the only thing we knew we wanted for sure was a simple, natural and understated look. I’m not an overly fussy person and don’t like anything too over the top.
We opted for a colour scheme of sage green and lemon, with daises. We used large tins covered with hessian, filled with flowers and finished off with lace for the centerpieces. We picked up a couple of hessian buntings, one saying Mr&Mrs for our archway, and one saying “just married” for the top table.
My friend Kathy and her husband and daughter spent hours making and hand cutting and painting various sizes of sugar daisies to scatter on the tables which just helped tie everything in together and the children loved them. They also hand painted and filled miniature glass jars with sparkly confetti and decorated them with daisies. We had to have bubbles on the tables too of course!
Everything was family orientated, planning the wedding made our two families come together and everyone did anything they could to make our day special.
Usually wedding dress shopping is the first thing on a bride to be to do list, but I left my dress shopping a little bit last minute and it ended up being a bit of a panic. When I first went I was a bit overwhelmed by it all (mostly having to get undressed in front of a stranger). My original idea for a wedding dress was for a bohemian style wedding dress, simple and flowy, but after trying on the style it just wasn’t for me.
I went to Samantha’s in Hull and there was my dress. I fell in love with it instantly and although it was out of my budget I had to have it! It was a princess cut gown with an ivory lace illusion neckline with pearl detail and finished off with a silver crystal and pearl waist band. With the wedding only 12 weeks away it had to be put a fast track for delivery and manic dress fittings the week before the wedding but the ladies in the store were really helpful and did their best for me and I was so happy with my dress.
Carl wore a grey Prince Edward cut suit, hired from Greenwoods with an ivory rouche and brogues. It was the only part of the wedding planning I had no say in, but he chose well and looked very handsome.
The bridesmaids wore sage green floor length Coast dresses.
Carl’s Aunty Toni volunteered to do our flowers for us, she is very artistic and creative and we were really happy with the end result. We wanted simple, country style flowers and we had a silk daisy assortment. My bouquet was slightly different holding some yellow and white roses too.
Our friends came up with the idea for our cake and made it for us. Instead of having a tiered cake they made a large daisy. The centre of the daisy was a fruit cake, and the petals around the daisy were alternating chocolate and lemon sponge. They made us a Mr and Mrs Bumble Bee to sit in the center, the Mr had a little top hat and the Mrs had a little veil and bouquet.
We had a singer join us for the ceremony and the reception, she sang as I walked down the aisle and again as we walked back up the aisle together as husband and wife. She then travelled to the reception venue where she played throughout the rest of the daytime, up until the DJ started at 7pm for the party.
We have planned our honeymoon to Fuerteventura during the school holidays so our 5 year old son can come with us. A holiday wouldn’t be the same without him.
The best advice we can give to other Brides Up North is that no matter what your budget, your photographer is one of the most important parts of your wedding day. Do your research, look at their web page see if you like their style of photography. meet with them and make sure you hire someone you can trust and get along with. If you don’t like your wedding photos you can’t have a re-run.
January 23rd, 2014 | Julia Braime
Even powered by all the pretty get through here on a daily basis at Brides Up North HQ, we can’t be everywhere at once (although with 18, and counting, bridal events planned for this year alone we really are trying)! Unfortunately – sob! – we don’t have a date in our diaries to visit our lovely East Yorkshire readers this season, so rather than leave you high and dry (geddit?) I’ll hand you over to our friends and Brides Up North Featured Suppliers at The Deep. Hull’s biggest Wedding Fayre is back! Now in its fourth year, The Deep will open its doors to future brides, grooms, their friends and families on Thursday 23rd January 2014 from 7pm to 10pm.
Zoe at The Deep says: Many people don’t realise that The Deep is licensed to hold weddings, civil ceremonies and receptions for which we can provide an unforgettable and unique venue. So come along and see what this exciting venue can offer you and don’t forget, you can talk to The Deep’s dedicated events team about what you are looking for.
We have some stunning locations within the venue where couples can get married, including in front of the Endless Oceans window with the majestic rays, green sawfish and other exotic species swimming by. Why not get married in our stunning glass observatory with amazing views overlooking the River Humber?
Experience the best the region has to offer with over 45 exhibitors showcasing their wares as well as enjoying our catwalk shows and sampling canapés from The Deep’s own Two Rivers Restaurant.
January 14th, 2014 | Julia Braime
Let’s brighten things up around this Tuesday with this colour popping celebration sent to me by real bride Kate and wedding photographer Tori Deslauriers. Kate and Phil opted for a fresh look alongside traditional details, personal touches and lots of bright colour. Today’s Real Wedding is all things bright and beautiful. Enjoy.
Kate says: Phil asked me to marry him on 2nd August 2011. We were in the planning process of building a new house, Phil told me we had an appointment to see the architect so I got the afternoon off work. When he picked me up, he told me we weren’t going to the architect we were going to choose an engagement ring. I was given a ring box with a washer in it! I had always said I’d want to pick my own ring, just to make sure…
We were married on Sat 7th September 2013 (ten and a half years after we got together)! The ceremony was at St Peters Church in Humbleton, East Yorkshire and the reception was in a marquee at the Walled Gardens of Burton Constable Stately Home.
The Church is our local parish church, which is a quaint country church and was only 5 minutes from home, so was an obvious choice.
We knew we both wanted a marquee reception – something we could make our own. We had previously been to a wedding at Burton Constable and commented on how beautiful and private the gardens were, it was only 10 minutes from the church so it was perfect. We didn’t even look at any other venues.
We wanted the wedding day to be modern and stylish, so went for a black and white theme with a hint of colour.
January 8th, 2014 | Julia Braime
Brides Up North reader Lois chose a stately pile I know very well for her beautiful wedding celebration this summer: the location for three Brides Up North Luxury Wedding exhibitions in 2012 and 2013 and Ms. Sarah Beeny’s country home – Rise Hall. Good choice Lois!
Photography by Inspire By Kelly.
Lois says: We got engaged soon after we moved into our first home together in February 2012. We were just at home – it was so cute. We were married on 30th August 2013 at Rise Hall, East Yorkshire.
We had looked round several lovely venues in East Riding. I first visited Rise Hall with my mum, because Alex was busy preparing to compete in the London 2012 Olympic Games – so time away from training was difficult to find. We drove down the drive and the view was truly amazing – from that moment, I knew I was going to get married there. We booked it straight away, even without Alex seeing it!
December 23rd, 2013 | Julia Braime
Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the team take a break until to rest and recharge for what’s set to be the biggest and best 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.
Usual service will recommence on 2nd January 2014, but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings in 2013. Drop in every day for the very, very prettiest wedding inspiration and if you are a Brides Up North bride, to see if your Real Wedding was one of our top picks.
What better way to kick off the week than with one super stylish and perfectly pretty Real Wedding recap, courtesy of Brides Up North Featured Supplier Chris Milner Photography and real bride Jessica.
Combining a few of my favourite things – wildflowers, sequins and summertime – this was always going to be a good one!
Jessica says: We got engaged in the summer of 2011 whilst on holiday with friends in Cornwall. After a heavy night in Newquay we spent the next day lazing on the beautiful beach at Polzealth. Chris asked me if I’d like to take a walk up on the cliff tops, and because of the gorgeous sunshine and plentiful tanning opportunities I needed convincing to leave my comfy beach-towelled spot! But we headed up to a lovely grassy area overlooking the ocean and he got down on one knee to my squeals of surprise and delight!
We were married on Saturday 3rd August 2013. The ceremony was at St. Peter’s Church in Anlaby, a stones-throw from my parents home and where I grew up. The reception took place at West Carlton Country Guest House in Aldborough.
I spied our one-of-a-kind venue after trawling the internet for wedding venues in the area. Tim and Caroline who own the house, were so welcoming and just our sort of people right from our first meeting with them at their wedding fair. The beauty of West Carlton is that each wedding is different. It meant we had the freedom to choose our own entertainment, caterers, marquee company, everything. And the rural location meant that no neighbours protested when the partying went on until well past 4am in the morning!
The next main thing was the marquee which proved to be one of the toughest decisions of the whole process! After numerous site visits and exchanges of emails and quotes, something just didn’t feel right about the arrangements until we found Black Cherry Events. Although not local to East Yorkshire, they were excited to provide our marquee and offered excellent service. The little extras they included, such as the lighting options (the twinkle light ceiling really made the marquee amazing as the sun went down!) the choice of flat drapes, and the chill-out furniture, was something that we’d just not been presented with by anyone else – I am thrilled that we found them.
We chose an English Country Garden theme. We wanted a relaxed, outdoorsy wedding that was fresh, informal and free from stuffy etiquette.
My dress was from The White Room in Sheffield. I had lusted after Jenny Packham’s bridal collection from the beginnings of my research. Joy was the last of five beautiful dresses I tried and I knew it was the one. I matched the dress with a Jenny Packham headpiece.
After visiting Harrogate Vintage Wedding Fair I met Julie from From This Day Forward in Bradford. She was showcasing her original dresses in a variety of styles and colours. I wanted a Cath Kidston-like cotton dress that would be girly and summery and fit my bridesmaids perfectly and that’s exactly what I got!
Sarah at the Floral Lounge created an unstructured bouquet featuring mini yellow sunflowers craspedia, bluperum, purple Veronica, lilac, sweetpeas, stox in bright purple colours and September aster flower. The bouquet was bound by extra material from the alterations of my wedding dress, as were the flowers the bridesmaids carried.
For me my favourite part of the day was actually the part I was dreading beforehand! I imagined walking into the church for Chris and everyone to see me for the first time would be really nerve-wracking, but I loved seeing everybody’s smiling faces and enjoyed every moment of the service. A close second place goes to dancing the night away with the band and friends, amazing memories.
My dad has a 1968 MGB Roadster in primrose yellow that I always wanted to be my wedding car. For the short journey from my parents’ house to the church it was just me and him, with the top down (driving very slowly to save my hair!) and then for the thirty minute journey from the church to Aldborough Chris drove us both with our photographer in hot pursuit! This half an hour was one of my favourite parts of the day as it gave us the chance to catch up on the events of the morning (and the night before)!
We wanted a home-made, rustic feel to the marquee and decorations, but unfortunately neither me nor Chris are particularly crafty so it came to my mum to step up! She made ninety-two metres of bunting, raspberry jam favours for the girls and apple chutney favours for the boys! She even googled ‘How to make tissue paper-pom-poms’ and painstakingly folded and cut fifty pom-poms.
We didn’t really have a colour scheme, other than fresh, summery, floral shades that would fit in well with the countryside setting. The bunting was a mixture of ditzy florals, polka dots and gingham, whereas the pom-poms were in bright fuchsia pinks, blues and creams.
Not to be left out of the crafting, my dad, a sign-writer by trade, made signs for the campers and a banner for the car. My brother got in on the act too, and spent time researching vintage super-8 cameras to capture some images of the day. A videographer was one supplier too many and the budget just couldn’t stretch, so we began to think about ways of doing it ourselves. He bought me a 1976 Cannon 310 XL super-8 camera and two rolls of film. We had a play around with the camera and made sure it worked beforehand, and then on the day passed it around family and friends to capture moments from the day. Since the wedding we have had the films developed and digitised and I am really happy with the results. The nostalgic flickers of familiar, smiling faces help to remind us of what a perfect day we had. You can see it here.
My mum and her friend went on a baking mission a week before the wedding! Our main cake (which didn’t get eaten…details to follow!) was a rich fruit cake iced with marzipan and royal icing topped with mini bunting. Surrounding that on the cake table we had a smorgasbord of loaf cakes, cupcakes and buns which included lemon drizzle muffins, fruit scones, coffee, blueberry, lemon and chocolate cupcakes and sticky orange marmalade cake. On the day itself, we actually forgot to cut the cake! Then, in the wee small hours when the hard-working bar staff had gone home, our illustrious best man proved that in the contest between wedding cake and forehead, the dense fruit cake was the victor!
We met The Ordinary Men covers band at a wedding fair and they promised us a night to remember and they did not disappoint! They did an acoustic set which included Oasis, Razorlight and Paolo Nuttini before cranking it up for the full set later on. Everybody commented on the band and how the live music made the night extra special
We didn’t book a honeymoon in advance and instead decided to wait to see how we felt after the day. Luckily, thanks to the amazing generosity of our friends and family we were able to book a last minute short stay in Rome. We flew out a few days after the wedding and spent time sightseeing and eating our way around the eternal city.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be not to worry about anything and enjoy each part of the day in little sections, that way it doesn’t go too fast!
Congratulations Jessica & Chris!
Chris Milner Photography will be exhibiting at The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Wedding Exhibition THIS SUNDAY 17th November 2013 at National Railway Museum, York. The event is FREE ENTRY and open from 10:30am till 5pm. Click here for more details and to pre-register as a VIP Bride To Be.
Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier
December 9th, 2013 | Julia Braime
Its a bit of a late running start here at Brides Up North this Monday. I’m taking a little pre-Christmas holiday with my family and baby girl (bliss) and our Wi-Fi coverage seems to be vacationing too (not so much bliss). Just what a blogger loves – a poor internet connection!
Still, I think we’ve more than made up for the delay with this stunning set of images sent to me by Brides Up North Featured Supplier Photography By Ally Byrom and a collective of fabulous East Yorkshire wedding industry suppliers. Victoria Farr is another very special lady to grace the Brides Up North Featured Supplier Directory and having seen both her and Harriet Head’s work in person I can vouch for their considerable talents!
So starting late but starting timeless with a beautiful bit of inspiration for your Monday morning. Classic and chic, this is definitely one for all the Audrey’s out there…
Ally says: The common thread or purpose of this styled shoot was to showcase what East Yorkshire has to offer. We firmly believe that there is talent and life beyond the big smoke, hence Brides Up North being our resounding first choice when we decided to share these images, as they were far too good to keep to ourselves!
We are three local suppliers who’ve forged a great bond and work well together. We complement and inspire each other but most importantly we have fun. We had the opportunity to work with a beautiful Hull girl – Laura Peterson – destined for greatness on the silver screen and a beautiful hitherto undiscovered local stately home who have just opened their doors as a venue.
With an opportunity like this we rummaged through the yet to be photographed collections from By Harriet and decided to see how much fun we could have in a day. When classic beauty Laura entered the building, inspiration continued to flow and the shoot grew organically.
The day resulted in beautiful images of three different collections. As an added bonus we even managed to capture a couple of by Harriet’s hats and a sneak peak at the Christobel Circlet from the “Ethereal Dreams” collection, to be photographed soon.
There are those moments in life that prompt you to ask that old question: is this coincidence or is this fate? In the case of these three creative women, if you didn’t believe in fate before, they may just change your mind…
Harriet Head – By Harriet
Harriet is an experienced award winning accessories designer of couture & bespoke hand crafted pieces. She has worked not only brides but also on TV and commercial projects. Her designs are in demand world-wide and not just by brides, they have been worn to three Royal Weddings, Ascot and to many ladies day events. The start of 2014 sees by Harriet as a finalist in both the Wedding Industry Awards (Winner of NE Region for accessories) and the You & Your Wedding Magazine Bridal Retail Awards, both being announced at glittering London events in January, a new top Couture bridal stockist in London, working on a revamped website and two major national exhibitions in February and March.
Ally Byrom – Photography by Ally Byrom
A qualified, professional, award-winning and published photographer, specialising in wedding and commercial photography. We should also mention that Ally is currently offering an incredibly rare opportunity for one lucky couple to win their wedding photography, which you can learn more about by clicking here. But hurry the competition ends soon!!
Victoria Farr – Victoria Farr Make Up and Hair Artist
A much sought after professional in the hair and beauty industry. Victoria’s artistic flair and natural talent has seen her collaborate with leading industry and high fashion brands. A specialist wedding makeup & hairstylist her personal service leads the field in tailoring the perfect look for each client and occasion. With the luxury of being freelance Victoria travels all over the UK providing a personable service on your special day. Victoria also has experience in TV, commercial and camouflage make up.
Laura Peterson is a Hull actress currently studying at a prestigious American drama school founded by Stella Adler, whose past students include Kevin Costner and Robert De Niro. The team managed to prise Laura away from her busy schedule just before she jetted off to New York. Click here to read more.
Saltmarshe Hall is a beautiful, Grade II listed stately home on the River Ouse. With its light and airy rooms and vast, perfectly manicured gardens, it’s hard to imagine a more romantic or dramatic setting. Once inside Saltmarshe Hall, it was clear that the library, the orangery and the portico all had something different to offer and it was too good an opportunity to miss from both a product showcasing and photographic viewpoint.
So what brought Harriet, Ally and Victoria together? Where does fate fit into all of this? Well, they’re all professionals in the wedding industry who just happen to live within a 10 mile radius of each other in East Yorkshire and, unbelievably, never realised it and never met.
Thankfully (via social networking – thank you Facebook!), they finally did and, as you can imagine, when you combine their extensive credentials and experience, something spectacular is surely just around the corner.
And there’s no reason your wedding can’t resemble these beautiful images, so for more information or to make a booking with either Harriet, Ally or Victoria just follow the links to their web sites.
Little Black Book
Images – Photography By Ally Byrom
Hats and headpieces – By Harriet
Make up and hair – Victoria Farr Hair & Make Up Specialist
Venue – Saltmarshe Hall
Wedding Car – Silver Lane Wedding Cars
November 20th, 2013 | Julia Braime
This evening I’m sharing a pretty little gem of a styled bridal shoot from my Featured Suppliers Walker & Walker Photography. Call me fickle (and you’d be right) but yesterday I readying my gloves, scarf and bobble hat with glee, and tonight, I’m wishing for summer. That’s what a flower crown will do to you…
Ben of Walker & Walker says: This shoot was a joint collaborative project between Walker & Walker and Wayside Flower and was produced with an audience so potential clients could see how we work.The shoot was staged at The Little Organic Bakery in Bridlington and we hand picked the venue for the colourful selections of flora, foliage and rustic walls that had an English secret garden charm.
Our model was Sophie. She was chosen by us as she’s curvy and demure with beautiful long dark hair and showcased the vintage white wedding dress, floral head wear, shrug, underskirt, shoes and jewellery supplied by Wayside Flower beautifully.
The floral hand tied spray was made up by Lynn Walker from Next Flowers and the vintage wedding ring belonged to Lynn’s great grandmother. Lynn also prepared the props and set styling.
Little Black Book
Images: Walker & Walker Photography
Venue: The Little Organic Bakery, Bridlington
Clothing, Jewellery & Floral Head Pieces: Wayside Flower
Other florals, props and styling: Next Flowers
October 7th, 2013 | Julia Braime
So, with 160 brides and their families at yesterday’s beautiful show at The Mansion, and well over 1,000 people in total at last week’s massive North East event at Hardwick Hall Hotel, is there a Northern bride to be who doesn’t know about our Revolution yet?! Thank you all for your wonderful support at these and our other events so far this season.
There’s still more where those came from, including another gorgeous Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition at Nostell Priory this Sunday 13th October and a quick stop across the Pennines at The Bowdon Rooms on Sunday 3rd November, before we close the season in style at The National Railway Museum, York on Sunday 17th November 2013 with our big vintage event. Click here to pre-register for any of these events, pronto.
More about all that later, but this morning it’s back to the Real Wedding inspiration here on the blog as we join Brides Up North reader Claire and her new husband Chris for their simple yet stylish country canvas celebration. Their day is perfectly personal and looks like a load of fun: when the Soup of the Day is “whisky” you always know that you are in for a proper party!
With images by Grazia Louise.
Claire says: We got engaged in Paris, on a freezing February day in 2011 and were married on Saturday 3rd August 2013 at a lovely traditional church in the Village of North Ferriby, East Yorkshire. We celebrated afterwards at The Wildflower Meadow, which belongs to The Keepers Lodge, in the picturesque village of Brantingham.
We knew we wanted a church service, both being teachers we’re well versed at most hymns! Our dream was to hold a relaxed reception in the countryside, and we were really lucky to find such a quiet corner of Brantingham. We went to view the field in the depths of winter when the trees were bare and the ground was frozen. We were sold as soon as we got out of the car – the view is incredible; there’s a real sense of being blissfully lost in the middle of nowhere and we knew it was somewhere we could imagine and friends and family relaxing on the big day. It also helped that the landowners were lovely, genuine people.
We tried to avoid giving the wedding a set theme; we just tended to go for things we liked. Naturally, we gravitated towards anything a bit rustic and a little less than perfect. I collected a whole host of images in the planning stages, and I was always drawn to the idea of having a relaxed country style, where nothing was too matchy.
Our colour theme began as peach, when I chose peach dresses for the bridesmaids. It quickly became apparent that peach is actually pretty hard to come by in the wedding world (popular in the 80’s apparently?!) so our palette ending up including dusky pink, pale green, sky blue and all things pastel!
My dress was chosen a full year before the wedding. I saw it in the shop window, when I wasn’t wedding dress shopping at all. I tried it on straight away and fell in love. It was only the second dress I had tried, but it had all the things I’d been looking for – lace, buttons up the back, a high neckline and cap sleeves. It was from a Phase Eight outlet, and I have lost count of how many people have commented that they couldn’t believe it was such a steal. I knew I didn’t want a veil, but invested in a beautiful flower crown which I adore.
My bridesmaids each wore a peach dress by Almari at House of Fraser. Being the amazing friends that they are, the bridesmaids used a spare dress to make part of a patchwork quilt that they gave me the night before the wedding. It prompted my first wedding tears!
I carried a bouquet of mixed pastel coloured flowers including delphinium, flock, peonies and lavender to reflect the buttonholes.
We travelled in a vintage Bramwith. The bridesmaids were ferried around in Chris’ dad’s Land Rover!
We tried very hard to support local suppliers and independent businesses. Our guy rope marquee was supplied by the lovely Will’s Marquees, a family company based in York. The catering was provided by Dine on the Rowe, based in Beverley. I sourced most of the flowers through a website called ‘Flowers from the Farm’, the best man and I drove to a local farm two days before the wedding and picked up three huge buckets full of home grown wildflowers. Our photographers were Grazia Louise, who were incredible.
We knew from the start that a formal three course meal wasn’t right for our setting – cooking up 80 chicken dishes in the middle of a field in the height of summer just didn’t feel right. Instead, we provided Yorkshire themed canapés as guests arrived at the field, followed by huge picnic hampers on each table. The hampers were crammed full of local specialities and seemed to go down an absolute treat! We served some extra nibbles later in the evening, but had lots left over by the time the night was drawing to a close.
Outside the marquee we used old deck chairs and hay bales to provide seating and Chris set up cricket and croquet to satisfy the PE teacher in him. I handmade all the stationery myself, including the table plan, place names, invites and order of service. It was time consuming but enjoyable and made everything feel so much more personal.
A friend and colleague who is an incredible artist painted a huge banner of the two of us which hung behind the dance floor and we asked guests to write messages on postcards instead of the traditional guestbook.
We played music from an iPod during dinner then enjoyed lots of laid back guitar courtesy of The Travelling Polar Bears, a band consisting of our best man’s gardeners! They were absolutely fantastic at playing old classics and personal favourites. Towards the end of the night, I could be found barefooted on the dance floor.
I love listening to Jerusalem, and hearing it in the church was really lovely. The most incredible moment though, was my new husband’s funny/touching/ridiculous/gorgeous speech.
For our honeymoon, we went to Kuala Lumpur, followed by a private island off the coast of Malaysia and then Hong Kong. For us, the trip of a lifetime.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to stay true to yourselves and your priorities- we wanted a to provide all the guest drinks, and managed to do it by creating a makeshift bar and sacrificing things we weren’t as concerned about, like individual favours. Ultimately, when people look back on your day, it should reflect the two of you and your lifestyle. Oh, and leave yourself longer than you think to get ready!
Congratulations Claire & Chris!
This is not a sponsored post
October 1st, 2013 | Julia Braime
As well as showing off the talents of our amazing wedding industry in the North, one added bonus of our Featured Supplier showcases here on the blog is the insight it gives into the fabulous personalities behind their professional personas. One such lovely lady is Brides Up North Featured Supplier Ally of Photography By Ally Byrom, who is here to day to introduce herself and her work. Oh, and give away a day’s wedding photography COMPLETELY FREE! Read on, or if your head’s been turned by that revelation, click here for more details and to enter.
How did you get into wedding photography?
I have been a photographer for many years in the tiny Channel Island of Guernsey where I photographed around 25 weddings a year. I moved to East Yorkshire 18 months ago and have been astounded by the number of spectacular wedding venues and the warmth of the Yorkshire people.
I studied art at University where I first picked up a film camera. Photography didn’t really float my boat until the advent of digital cameras and Photoshop – it was like being able to paint pictures without chucking away a ton of canvasses!
I first established myself as a children’s portrait photographer until one day a client asked the fateful question “Do you photograph weddings?”. So I said yes, and I was hooked.
I hold the Licentiateship of the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers and have won multiple gold awards with the SWPP. My work has been published in Digital Camera Magazine, Professional Imagemaker and will shortly be published in My Perfect Wedding magazine.
Why wedding photography specifically?
Weddings are emotional, fun and full of personality and little details! For a photographer who loves portraiture it’s a positive feast!
I have lost count of the number of weddings I have photographed but all of them without doubt are different. It is hard work but I can honestly say I never ever notice the time on a wedding day. It seems like you start photographing the preparations and before you can blink the bride and groom are being called to the dance floor for their first dance! By the end of the day I am tired but buzzing!
What is your favourite thing about being a wedding photographer?
I love the fact that I meet my clients at least a year in advance of their wedding day and I know nothing at all about them. By the time the wedding day arrives we have built a rapport and I am just as excited as they are to see how they have set the scene for their very special day.
I love designing wedding albums, for me the album is a bride and groom’s story and a wedding feels naked without one. Whilst I am photographing a wedding I do so with the album in mind and as a result every page tells the story of each scene. I am so passionate about albums I wrote a whole blog post on why everyone should have one! I haven’t shown an album to many newlyweds without them shedding a tear or two!
We hear you have a VERY exciting competition in the pipeline?
Indeed I do, I am offering one lucky couple the chance to WIN their wedding photography. Anyone who has planned or is currently planning a wedding knows just how much of your budget is set aside for professional photography, and I feel lucky to be able to save a couple a considerable portion of their budget!
To enter, couples should head over to my Facebook page for the terms and conditions – it’s very easy to enter, and well worth it! The winner will be announced just before Christmas on 22nd December – what a lovely gift for one lucky couple.
How do you get couples to relax on the day?
My style is around 95% unstaged. I describe myself as an honest, sincere and inspirational photographer. I am most interested in capturing the emotion of the day, which is more often than not when people don’t know they are being photographed. I like to make my images look as though I was looking through a keyhole. There is a saying “nothing changes behaviour like being observed” which is absolutely true, if you don’t believe me just stand in front of a camera …
The greatest compliment clients can pay me is that they didn’t know I was there.
When it comes to the all important time alone with the couple I choose a location that says something about where they were that day then ask them to take a walk and focus on each other. I use a very long lens which helps me keep my distance and they then tend to act more naturally. Once they become comfortable only then will I add a tiny bit of direction.
Any advice to any brides who don’t like to have their picture taken?
If I had £1 for every time people say to me “I hate having my photograph taken” I would be one very rich lady! But in reality on a wedding day when everyone is looking their very best and there’s a bit of champagne involved there is usually a queue for the camera!
We all have the same goal – great pictures – and my advice to a bride who really doesn’t like to have her picture taken would be to look at her husband, she’ll forget the camera is even there, the same advice I will give her on the day.
Which celebrity wedding would you most like to photograph and why?
Alan Rickman’s wedding – preferably with me as the bride!
Any really memorable weddings that you have captured?
Far too many to mention, all of my weddings to date have been at least one if not all of these.
If I must choose one then it would be the wedding of two opera singers, I had goose bumps in the church, the singing was incredible.
Any funny stories to share?
Being a photographer in the Channel Island of Guernsey for several years, most wedding venues have swimming pools and there’s rarely a wedding without someone ending up in it!
Scottish weddings featuring kilts are always reliable for a slice of humour; for some reason they are always keen to share the “secrets” beneath the kilt. The culprits rarely consider that I am sober, have a camera and will definitely take the shot!
Not exactly funny but I did have to stop a waiter half way through distributing the wedding cake and explain that the bride and groom hadn’t cut it yet! Poor guy was mortified.
What sets you apart from other wedding photographers?
My style is unobtrusive, I do not interfere in a wedding day and as a result my images are natural, full of emotion and a reflection of the bride and groom’s personalities.
There is a wealth of photographic talent out there and I think in the end it comes down to your style and personality. Stunning images will not get you by on their own, you also need an engaging personality because wedding photography is great imagery and great people management in equal parts. I pride myself in having both.
I also offer wedding films. We make amazing wedding films and have a real passion for telling stories. We make high emotion wedding films that will stand the test of time and be as enjoyable now as they will be for years to come. You can see a trailer by clicking here.
What can a couple who book you expect on the day?
A big smile. My undivided attention. An organised, calm and punctual photographer (actually that’s a fib, I’m always early). A gentle people manager (you’ll love this when it’s time to gather 200 guests for a group shot). A pair of helpful hands – I carry a crochet hook for silk buttons on wedding dresses and I am well practiced in lacing up too!
But most importantly of all you can expect a beautiful set of images recorded sensitively to remember that special time in your lives.
What is included in your "package"?
I don’t have set packages, I provide clients with a tailor made service and provide what they feel they need. From disks, to beautifully bound wedding albums, high quality frames and thank you cards.
Can you give us an idea on price?
My base price is £1,500, this includes my time from preparation to first dance and a disk of high resolution, post-processed images from which you can print. Beautifully crafted professional quality albums are available at an additional cost.
How can Brides Up North get in touch with you/ see more examples of your work?
You can see my wedding photography and film at www.allybyrom.com
Call me on 07704 171118
E-mail me at email@example.com
Anything else we should know?
I love a good gin & tonic. I love weddings. I read all the time. I am constantly watching my weight. I love shoes. I guess I am your average woman, except I don’t have an obsession with handbags!