Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

ruffles & roses. pretty pastels for a relaxed garden party wedding in liverpool – cecilia & philip

August 29th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

A Garden Party Wedding in Liverpool (c) Tim Simpson Photography  (18)

We’re getting Monday off to a very pretty start here on the blog by heading North West to relive the gorgeous wedding of Cecilia and Philip.

Deciding on a chilled-out garden party wedding theme to complement their chosen venue, Cecilia and Philip styled their day with lots of flourishing florals and paper pompoms in sugary pastel tones.

As well as the setting, we love Cecilia’s choice of voluminous ruffle wedding gown, topped off with a cute pink flower crown. B-e-a-u-tiful!

With images by Tim Simpson Photography.

A Garden Party Wedding in Liverpool (c) Tim Simpson Photography  (33)

cecilia says: We’ve been together for almost ten years so it was about time we got engaged. It happened whilst we were watching the sunset on a summer’s evening after dinner at Bon Ton overlooking over the lagoon on a holiday in Langkawi.

Once engaged we set the wedding date for 31st May 2015. We thought the end of spring/beginning of summer would be a lovely time of year to marry and it’s also a great time for lots of blossoming flowers.

A Garden Party Wedding in Liverpool (c) Tim Simpson Photography  (27)

When deciding where the wedding should take place Liverpool sprang to our minds as it was the city in which we first met. Grade II* listed Sefton Park Palm House was our venue of choice. We loved the crisp white architecture of the glass house and surrounding beauty of greenery. Also the aromas from the glass house flower as soon as you walk into the venue. We had both our ceremony and reception there.

For the wedding theme we agreed on a relaxed garden party vibe with lots of floral décor. The colour scheme meanwhile was light shades of pinks, with splashes of blue and lime green. I thought that these would be easy on the eye but also pop out well against the white linen tables whilst blending in well with the floral green house.

A Garden Party Wedding in Liverpool (c) Tim Simpson Photography  (44)

I had two wedding day outfits: my white wedding gown and then a little red dress for the tea ceremony. It is the Chinese tradition to wear red on the special day with the lucky meaning. My wedding gown was a princess bell shape with long train, which after trying various styles of gowns, is the shape that suited me most. The ‘dome’ was formed by multi layers of lightweight fabrics so even though the train was quite long, wasn’t that heavy to stop me from moving freely. I ordered by wedding dress from an online shop on Taobao (China’s equivalent of eBay), which was custom made to fit my size. The red dress I wore was from another shop on Taobao which turned out to be a bit of a headache – I later wished that I had ordered it from the same shop as where I got my wedding dress from. If brides do fancy getting a nice outfit from Taobao, my advice would be to make sure they find those with an excellent reputation, and ideally with high street store. Oh and allow plenty of time for ordering and delivery.

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blues & brights. mori lee for a pretty wedding in the north west – sophie & brendan

April 14th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

A Vibrant Wedding in the North West (c) Mike Plunkett Photography (85)

The spring weather might not have quite sprung outdoors, but this morning’s beautiful real wedding is guaranteed to brighten up your day.

Choosing to keep things simple, Brendan and Sophie opted for a varying blue colour palette then added pops of vibrancy in lovely blooms and attractive centrepieces.

All in all a very pretty and sunny celebration indeed!

With images by Mike Plunkett Photography.

A Vibrant Wedding in the North West (c) Mike Plunkett Photography (36)

sophie says: Brendan proposed to me when we were in a seafood restaurant in Bangkok, Thailand. We were travelling around South East Asia in October 2011 before heading to Australia to work for a year. It was the night before my birthday and we had been staying in hostels for six weeks but this night we decided to stay at the Hilton in Bangkok. We went out for tea and he said he wanted to give me my birthday present that night. It was a gift bag with a dress in it and at the bottom of the bag was a ring. We had been together seven years at this point but it was still a big surprise.

A Vibrant Wedding in the North West (c) Mike Plunkett Photography (43)

We got married in our hometown of Southport at Holy Trinity Church and then went onto Old Links Golf Club for the reception. We liked the idea of a traditional wedding and the church is so beautiful inside. We went to see lots of venues in Southport for the reception but we loved Old Links Golf Club straight away. The staff were lovely, it had a really relaxed atmosphere, which is what we were looking for, and the outdoor area was so pretty.

We didn’t have a particular theme as such, we just liked the idea of a traditional wedding but relaxed at the same time. We wanted everyone to mix together which is why we didn’t have a head table, instead we had round tables throughout the room so everyone could interact.

Our colour scheme was cornflower blue and navy blue. We thought these were nice, classic colours and I wanted something quite subtle as I knew I wanted bright flowers that would stand out against the other details.

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a wonderful world. a pretty boho wedding at abbeywood gardens – hannah & joe

December 14th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A Pretty Boho Wedding (c) Jessica O'Shaughnessy Photography (37)

We’re getting your week off to a very beautiful start here on the blog by reliving the wonderful wedding of Hannah and Joe.

When the two of them see today’s post they will be in Australia on a somewhat mammoth honeymoon as they decided to leave for a year’s travelling the day after saying their ‘I dos’. Guys, we salute you!

Their departure therefore made their boho wedding a leaving party also which meant it was all the more important for the big day to be an enjoyable one. Looking at the pictures we think it’s fair to say the memories will be living on back home in their absence.

With images by Jessica O’Shaughnessy Photography.

A Pretty Boho Wedding (c) Jessica O'Shaughnessy Photography (9)

hannah says: We got engaged while on holiday in the South of France with my parents, Gran and my two brothers. On our second day we went to a beautiful village in the mountains called Minerve. We all had lunch together and then went off in smaller groups to explore. Joe walked me up a steep hill with stunning views of the mountains and whilst shaking with nerves, got down on one knee and proposed. I burst into tears and when we’d finally calmed down we ran off to tell my family who were thrilled.

We set the date for the 14th August 2015. As I’m a primary school teacher we knew we wanted the wedding in the summer holidays and we were hopeful for good weather around then! It also meant my brother and his family could come over from Australia to be part of the celebrations.

A Pretty Boho Wedding (c) Jessica O'Shaughnessy Photography (14)

As Joe is from Derbyshire and I’m from Cheshire, we looked in both areas for a venue but finally fell in love with Abbeywood Gardens in Cheshire. We love the outdoors and this venue has stunning gardens surrounded by fields and forests. The staff were also really friendly, laid back and helpful – we just knew straight away it was the right place for us.

We wanted an outdoor wedding and the venue had a beautiful pagoda near a pond which we thought would be perfect for our ceremony. Of course, we live in England and so it rained for most of our wedding day but we didn’t mind as we had a beautiful ceremony in the huge glasshouse where you could still look out at the flowers.

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english country garden. a pretty pastel wedding with vintage touches in shropshire – hayley & ross

November 16th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A Pretty Pastel Wedding in Shropshire (c) Knot Just Pics (56)

If you’re craving some pretty on this Monday morning then you’ve come to the right place, as today we’re sharing Hayley and Ross’ gorgeous celebration, complete with pastel wedding colours and handpicked style blooms.

As well as the setting being stunning, so too are the bride and groom with Ross opting for a slightly unusual bottle green suit and Hayley wearing a slim-line vintage style gown with exquisite detailing.

Above all we love that the day is beautifully styled but has a very chilled out vibe to it too – well until the reception that is when it appears some rather competitive moves went down on the dancefloor!

With images by Knot Just Pics.

A Pretty Pastel Wedding in Shropshire (c) Knot Just Pics (24)

hayley says: We had been together for eight years and were travelling around Australia and New Zealand visiting family and friends when we got engaged. Ross’ mum lives in New Zealand and she planned a big trip for Ross, myself, her and her husband around the South Island. We stayed in lots of small out of the way places, one of which was called ‘Barb’s Bach’ in the Marlborough Sounds (A bach is a holiday cottage). It was a fair drive from anywhere so really peaceful and remote. Ross and I were sleeping in a ‘sleep out’ which is essentially a spare bedroom down a walkway in the garden. Ross is not an early riser so I was getting suspicious of him getting up so early to make coffee in the mornings. Little did I know that these were failed attempts to get the ring from his mother’s handbag where it was safely hidden! Eventually he got down on one knee next to the bed and proposed. It was a total shock, having been together for so long, I just did not see it coming!

A Pretty Pastel Wedding in Shropshire (c) Knot Just Pics (21)

Our wedding date was slap bang in the middle of the school summer holidays as I am a primary school teacher. I needed both time to sort things out and then time to go on a honeymoon before school started again.

Ross is from South Africa, I’m from Shropshire and we live in London, so no matter where we got married, people would have to travel from somewhere! In the end, we decided on Shropshire as it was the most affordable option for people having to travel. It is also one of the most beautiful, unspoilt places in the UK (although I may be a little biased!). Our venue was somewhere that I had often been to with my family for special occasion dinners although it took us ages to think of it as a wedding venue. We had been looking for places with accommodation and had no luck. During a family Sunday lunch we had a quick look around The Mytton and Mermaid Hotel and it was pretty perfect! Coincidentally my grandfather had booked my parents a room there on their wedding night but there was a mix up with the booking and they didn’t stay. Thankfully my parents were able to get over it – 36 years later!

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hello sunshine. mori lee for a yellow themed wedding in the north west – clare & charlie

November 3rd, 2015 | Rachel Parry

An Uplifting Wedding (c) Kate Scott Photography (42)

No matter what your current mood, today’s real wedding is utterly uplifting thanks to its summery colour scheme and the huge smiles on everybody’s faces (especially Clare and Charlie’s)!

We love the fab choice of venues, simple styling and pops of colour, which all in all make for a bright and breezy big day.

With images by Kate Scott Photography.

An Uplifting Wedding (c) Kate Scott Photography (29)

clare says: We got engaged on the beach on Christmas Day in Sri Lanka. He disguised it by putting it in a larger box to try and throw me off the scent but I knew something was up when he started doing up his shoelaces on one knee!

We got married on 18th July 2015, we knew we wanted a summer wedding and that gave us 18 months to get everything sorted.

An Uplifting Wedding (c) Kate Scott Photography (37)

The marriage ceremony was held at the beautiful Ashton Memorial in Williamson Park, Lancaster. I’m from Lancaster so know the building well, it is totally unique sitting on a hill looking down at the city. The park surrounding it is stunning too and has its very own Victorian butterfly house.

The reception was held at Forrest Hills, just outside Lancaster. I was so lucky to have found this venue, it is such as hidden gem; a quirky thatched building in its own little valley, surrounded by countryside and looking out onto its own private lake.

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wild at heart. a shabby chic wedding at chester zoo – sam & dan

July 28th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (42)

Yes you read right, for today’s wedding we’re heading to Chester Zoo to relive Sam and Dan’s gorgeous big day.

Despite how it might sound there were no ‘I dos’ in the lion den or drinks reception in the elephant enclosure, for Chester Zoo has a stunning manor house in its grounds, which is available for ceremonies and receptions.

Not only is this wedding incredibly beautiful, thanks to Sam’s love of all things shabby chic, but it also looks incredibly fun, with guests smiling, laughing and generally having a fab time in the somewhat unusual setting.

But enough from us, we’ll let you see the wild and wonderful day for yourselves.

With images by Yana Photography.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (1)

sam says: We got engaged in January 2012, while we were in Madrid. Dan had the proposal planned for a while and I didn’t have a clue. I knew we were going to Madrid but thought it was just for a bit of sightseeing. Dan was trying to pop the question down a cute little street but I was too busy looking around so instead he asked me once we got back to the apartment, after a lovely meal out.

We decided to set the wedding date for 16th May 2015 as we thought it would be a good time of year weather wise.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (4)

We got married at Chester Zoo, in the Oakfield Manor House. Dan come across the zoo as a wedding venue on the internet and as we didn’t want a traditional wedding, we thought it would be perfect for us. Which it was. We live quite close to Chester so it was an ok distance to travel for us and our guests.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (6)

The theme and colour scheme for the wedding was ‘pastel shabby chic’. I love everything and anything vintage so the styling was always going to be along these lines and pastel colours work really well for a shabby chic wedding.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (7)

My dress was from First Lady Bridal in Wrexham. It was the second dress I tried on and fell in love with it straight away, it made me feel amazing. I always knew what kind of dress I wanted and it was just perfect. The dress was full length ivory, fitted, fishtail style, with a huge train. It was full lace with pretty beading detail. My veil, with full lace trim, was the best bargain of wedding – an eBay bargain! My shoes were a light pink/salmon colour from Kurt Geiger.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (25)

Dan wore a navy fitted suit from Matalan, waistcoat from Next, shoes from Zara and a navy and white floral printed tie that really worked with the theme, which was from Primark. All the groomsmen were in matching suits, again from Matalan.

I only had one bridesmaid, my 13-year-old sister. She wore a light blue maxi dress, with multi-coloured floral print all over, from ASOS. She had pastel pink shoes and belt to match.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (30)

My mum arranged the transport for me as a gift. I had a Jaguar to travel in, which was hired from RB Wedding Cars, Wrexham.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (33)

Our photographer was Yana Photography, who we would definitely recommend. Yana was really friendly and helpful with family and friends, and the pictures look amazing!

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (51)

Flowers were provided by Vivid Floral Design in Wrexham. My bouquet was made up of beautiful pinks, blues, pastel coloured peonies, roses, gypsophila, gerbera among other flowers. I went for a meadow look. My bridesmaid’s bouquet was a mini version of mine, we both had lace and hessian wrapped around to carry on the theme.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (50)

All venue decorations were either made by myself, friends or family. I had a very DIY approach to the wedding which fitted the shabby chic theme really well. Decoration wise I had hessian table runners, and chair bows, ditsy print napkins, engraved wooden table numbers made by a friend, bunting made by myself and a friend, jam jars dotted with hessian and lace trim filled with flowers, tea cups and jugs filled with flowers and our name places were little flags with different floral/ ditsy print, which were made by a friend.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (9)

Our favours were Tunnocks Tea cakes. They worked well with theme and looked really cute.

We didn’t have a traditional wedding cake to cut, but instead a dessert table for guests to help themselves. My friend (Button Bakes) is amazing at baking so I asked if she would make a lovely selection of cakes: classic Victoria sponge, chocolate cake with raspberries and lemon cupcakes.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (11)

To provide the evening entertainment, we hired a DJ called Steve Lewis Entertainments, from Chester. My friends, family and I absolutely love dancing so I wanted someone who was going to play amazing music all night for us to not stop dancing. And that’s exactly what happened – lots of dance offs!

For extra entertainment we had a sweet stall for guests and a dress up corner, which was lots of fun.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (53)

As a special touch on the day my brother played the guitar for when I walked down the aisle and after the ceremony. Also, our wedding rings were specially made using my mum and dad’s wedding rings. My dad passed away before I was born, so this was something my mum suggested. A really lovely idea and they mean so much to us.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (61)

We would absolutely recommend our wedding venue to other couples. The staff were amazing on day, everything went perfect. The venue is absolutely stunning inside and the guests have the zoo to keep themselves busy. No bored guests at all.

It’s so hard to pick a favourite part of the day but I would have to say the ceremony itself was amazing, a lot more emotional than I thought. I also loved the first dance, it was perfect – I felt so happy and in love. We keep playing the song in the car all the time, as I want to relive that moment over and over again.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (63)

Following the wedding we had a short minimoon – a five day break in a log cabin in Keldy Forest, Yorkshire, which included a hot tub, prosecco and lots of food. We just wanted to completely chill out. We took our dog with us too, our little family getaway. Perfection.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (56)

My top tips to other Brides Up North would be to look around for bargains and do as much DIY as possible, it adds an extra touch and nobody else will have anything like it. But the main thing is, do what you both want. It’s your day so make it perfect for the both of you! It will be the best day ever so take it all in, as it will be over before you know it. I was crying at the end of our night because I didn’t want the night to end and our guests to leave.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Chester Zoo (c) Yana Photography (67)

Our day was made perfect thanks to the amazing help we had from family and friends. All my girls chipped in and paid for us to stay in the Double Tree Hilton Chester for the wedding night and they had the room decorated for when we arrived. My two best friends made a video of how Dan and I got together, which we loved – it was so funny. My mum, sister, nan and family members did a surprise routine to Beyoncé for me. They’d been meeting up for months in secret and doing rehearsals – this was the best wedding gift ever! Finally, I had my grandad and step dad give me away.

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