Brides Up North

Time For Tea! Maggie Sottero For A Vintage Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Wedding In Harrogate – Gemma & Paddy

July 1st, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Why not start the week off as we mean to go on?  One gorgeous Real Wedding after another? Yes please!

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For this afternoon’s celebration we are staying in North Yorkshire, as we join Brides Up North reader Gemma and her new husband Paddy for a vintage Mad Hatter’s Tea Party.  Trust me, it’s pretty (and not a Cheshire Cat or Alice band in sight…)!

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With images by Weddings Vintage.

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Gemma says:  Paddy proposed to me in July 2010. It was the morning of York Races and we were getting ready at home. I was undecided about what jewellery to wear and Paddy said “Why don’t you look in the drawer, you might find something in there”. Confused I opened my dressing table drawer and found a ring box… inside was an engagement ring. The whole day was wonderful; we celebrated with friends and drank champagne at the races. At the end of the day we watched some of the X-Factor finalists perform on stage and the song I always remember playing was “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol. It later became our first dance song.

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We tied the knot on 4th June 2012. It was the bank holiday weekend of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, so we decided to take advantage of the extra day off. We enjoyed the weekend before the big day and spent the Sunday dressing the venue.

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We had our ceremony and drinks reception at The Sun Pavilion in Harrogate, followed by our wedding reception at The White Hart Hotel.

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I really wanted a venue which had beautiful gardens where we could have our wedding photos taken. We looked at several different venues but none of them seemed right. I came across The Sun Pavilion on the internet and it just looked stunning. It had an amazing stained glass roof and a terrace outside which overlooked the idyllic Valley Gardens. It was perfect and we were excited to book our wedding reception there.

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For our reception, we chose The White Hart Hotel which was only a few minutes walk from the Valley Gardens. The hotel décor fit perfectly with our theme as they had recently refurbished and so we didn’t really have to do too much with the decorations.

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Our colour scheme was ivory with highlights of pale pinks, wisteria and lavender.

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My hair was done by my hairdresser and friend Gemma Peers. She also did my mum’s, nan’s and sister’s hair.  I had a make up trial at Bobby Brown and did my own make up on the wedding day.

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I chose “Cleo” a Maggie Sottero dress from The Harrogate Wedding Lounge. Hayley and all the staff were fabulous and really helpful. The seamstress helped to customise my dress and make it unique to me, we re-positioned the corsages and added a sweetheart neckline. I loved it!

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My shoes were from Monsoon and as soon as I saw them I knew they were the ones. The pearl brooch on them was exactly the same as the hair comb I had bought from Etsy. It was fate.

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My necklace was another Etsy purchase and I loved the big statement rhinestone flowers.

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The bridesmaid dresses were Ronald Joyce, also from The Harrogate Wedding Lounge. I loved the wisteria colour as it was a gorgeous vintage colour.

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Paddy, our page boy and best men wore suits which were hired from Slaters in Leeds.

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The night before the wedding we all stayed at The White Hart Hotel. We didn’t have very far to travel to the ceremony venue, however we still wanted something to travel in style in.

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Paddy borrowed an Audi R8 from a friend for him and his best men to travel in. From my bedroom window I could hear the sound of the engine as they took a tour around Harrogate town centre.

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My wedding car was also borrowed from a friend. It was a beautiful MG Magnet and I loved it’s vintage look. I wanted a vintage car but something that was a bit different.

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We hired Sally from Priceless Weddings as our on the day coordinator. With us having two separate venues I wanted to have some continuity and ensure there was someone to keep the day flowing and be there to help guests. She also acted as toastmaster and was fantastic!

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All our wedding flowers were provided by a family friend and she did such a fantastic job. My bouquet had my favourite flowers in it – peonies, carnations, roses, anemones and lavender. It was finished off with some fabric from my dress.  The bridesmaids had rose wrist corsages.

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It was important for us to have children at our wedding as we wanted our son to be page boy. It was so lovely having our son there on such a big day, during the ceremony Jake stood with us holding our hands. When it came to the giving of rings, Jake took each ring and passed it to us, it was so sweet! He even sat with us whilst we signed the register…it was just perfect.

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We wanted our day to reflect us as a couple as much as possible.

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I studied fashion design at university so like to be creative and indulge in craft projects, so I knew we were going to make a lot of things ourselves for the wedding from designing our own wedding stationery, to doing our own centrepieces.

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We decided upon the theme "a vintage mad hatter’s tea party". I have a love for all things vintage and my husband has his own business supplying tea and coffee to trade. So it just seemed the perfect theme for us.

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Harriet from Weddings Vintage did a fabulous job with our wedding photos. Harriet had photographed a friends’ wedding and when I saw the photos I instantly knew I wanted her to photograph our day.

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I made all of our wedding stationery; save the dates, invitations, order the day, name tags… you name it. It was a labour of love, but I was really pleased with how it all turned out and it was unique to us.

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For our drinks reception we served pink fizz, and also had bottles of Fentimans with stripy paper straws and I made “drink me” tags which we hung around the bottle necks.

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We treated guests to ice-cream which was provided by Ripley’s who are based in The Valley Gardens.

We borrowed a vintage butcher’s bike and decorated it with bunting, and guests helped themselves to the ice-cream from the basket on the bike.

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We set up a table just for the kids at the wedding breakfast . Each received a goodie bag from us which had in it a disposable camera and an “I spy” list, a word search, colouring pencils and a handmade biscuit.  We also provided a hamper of vintage toys and games for the children to play with as the table centrepiece. 

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We spent weeks scouring charity shops and eBay for vintage pieces that fit perfectly with our theme. Each piece was lovingly chosen, and my nana and mum also gave me their tea sets to use which made it even more personal.

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Each table had a different centrepiece all designed to look like the mad hatter’s table. We had cake stands on stacked vintage books, vintage glass bottles and tea pots filled with flowers, tea cups and saucers stacked up with pearl strands cascading out, vintage keys and door knobs…

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Each guest had a pretty little vintage trio as their place setting. The name tags were vintage keys which we sprayed white and I made the name tags which were tied to the keys with ribbon. 

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Our wedding favours were tins of loose leaf tea, which were made for us by Jeeves and Jericho.  The tea blend was specially made just for us. 

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We found a violinist through the Leeds College of Music for our wedding ceremony. She played whilst guests were arriving, during our drinks reception and also played along with my entrance song which was “Turning Page” by Sleeping At Last.

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During the evening Paddy and one of his best men DJ’d. It was like the old days when they used to DJ together in clubs and bars and they had such a laugh doing it again. We also had a local band “The International Party Doctors” who were fantastic and really got the party going. They performed our first dance song for us, which they had to learn beforehand.

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My Dad also got up on stage and sang a song to me, which was a big surprise as my Dad is quite shy. It was very touching.

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We treated evening guests to cocktails and a sweetie buffet.

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We asked a friend who is a professional chef to make our wedding cake and then we decorated it ourselves.

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The big surprise for our guests was when we cut into the cake and it was rainbow coloured! I was really chuffed in the months following the wedding when it was announced the trend for wedding cakes in 2013 was rainbow cake!

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For our wedding breakfast, we served afternoon tea cake stands for dessert and had teapots filled with proper loose leaf tea.

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Since our wedding, I have started my own business hiring out all our vintage china and props.

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In the evening we provided our own photo booth for guests to enjoy! We collected our own props and our wedding photographer took the photos. It was definitely the best idea and everyone really got into the spirit.

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As I had done most of the wedding planning, Paddy had the task of booking the honeymoon. I did start to panic at one point as it was three  weeks until the wedding and still nothing was booked. I had my heart set on the Maldives or Bora Bora with a water villa, but Paddy had other ideas!

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A few days before the wedding he surprised me with tickets to Thailand. We spent a night in Bangkok at The Banyan Tree Hotel, before flying to the island of Koh Kood and the Soneva Kiri Resort. To get to the island we had to travel on a small plane and then get a speedboat. It was rainy season whilst we were there but we were actually really lucky and only had one day of rain. The honeymoon was better than I could have imagined and was the perfect way to round off the celebrations.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is to try and be organised as much as possible so you can enjoy the last few days in the run up to the wedding.

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Congratulations Gemma & Paddy!

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North – here’s how.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Weddings Vintage

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Nice Day For A White Wedding! A Real Wedding In Harrogate – Melissa & Colin

February 24th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Welcome to Sunday Brides Up North!  Yeah, it’s almost the end of the weekend, I know, but look on the bright side – a new week means plenty more wedding pretty coming your way on these swirly silver pages! 

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Now you all know what I’m up to today… and I hope that lots of you North East brides and grooms will be joining us – Facebook and Twitter have certainly been abuzz with anticipation for days now!  Please click here for more details and to register for your FREE VIP Bride-To-Be Goody Bag, whilst stocks last… it’s only the massive Brides Up North Bridal Bonanza (yippee)!

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Brides Up North Bridal Bonanza Grand Wedding Exhibition at Hardwick Hall Hotel Spring 2013

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In the meantime, we are keeping the inspiration flowing for those of you who can’t make the event.  Today we visit Harrogate, North Yorkshire to drop in on the celebrations of Melissa and Colin, as they say “I do” in classic English style – think white lace, lily of the valley, a lot of love and a tea party to top it all off.  Bring out the bunting!

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Amy Sunley Photography

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With images by Amy Sunley Photography

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Melissa says:  We got engaged at Lake Windermere on September 11th 2011, and married on Saturday 5th May 2012 at St Robert’s Church in Pannal, with the reception at Pavilions of Harrogate.  We wanted a venue that was local for all our friends and family, with lots of outdoor space for the children.

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Amy Sunley Photography

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We styled the wedding as a spring vintage afternoon tea party, with a colour palette of white and spring pastels. 

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I chose a Pronovias dress from Confetti and Lace in Harrogate, which was classic and strapless with lots and lots of tulle!  Colin and his groomsmen wore indigo three piece suits. 

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I carried a bouquet of white peonies, hydrangeas and lily of the valley, bound with lace and a Wedgewood brooch belonging to my Nana.  Our flowers were by 4 Seasons of Harrogate. 

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Our favourite part of the day was the ceremony… and the speeches… in fact, we loved it all!

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Sarah Small of Cake! made a gorgeous four tier cake (two layers of fruit and two of vanilla with jam) covered in sugar hydrangea petals in pastel shades.  It tasted amazing. 

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We used Karen Peacock of Raindrops On Roses Vintage China Hire to add some personality to our afternoon tea. 

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Amy Sunley Photography

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Keeping with our tea party theme, we used gave everyone little pots of homemade jam as favours, by Favours Of The North.  We also treated everyone to ice creams, courtesy of The Icicle Tricycle. 

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Before the tea, we laid out garden games on the lawns, which the children (and bigger kids) enjoyed.  In the evening, we were entertained by Swing Thing and also had a dreambooth photo booth, which everyone loved!  

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After the wedding, we honeymooned in Mauritius.  It is such a beautiful place!

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to make sure that you and your groom stay together throughout your day so that you both share the same memories.  Enjoy every second of it!

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Amy Sunley Photography

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Congratulations Melissa & Colin!

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Fancy seeing your own Real Wedding on these pages?  Here’s how. 

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Amy Sunley Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Street Party! A Real DIY Wedding In Harrogate – Rosie & Adie

January 22nd, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog - Katie Byram Photography

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This vibrant and joyful church wedding seems perfect for a Sunday morning here on the wedding blog.  Sent in by Brides Up North Featured Supplier Katie Byram Photography, Rosie and Adie’s Real Wedding is festive and fun. 

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Katie says:  Rosie & Adie married on 18th June 2011 at St. Wilfrid’s Parish Church in Harrogate, in front of close family and friends.  They had a traditional church service followed by a reception at the church hall next door.

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They did much of the wedding DIY style, and had their family help them set up for the wedding the night before. Rosie made metres and metres of bunting herself, and there were fairy lights galore. The table settings were absolutely beautiful.  The church hall had lovely wooden panels & beams, and it the reception had a real ‘street party’ feel about it.

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Katie Byram Photography   Katie Byram Photography

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HEART

Congratulations Rosie & Adie! HEART

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Are you a newlywed?  Get in touch to share your Real Wedding memories on the wedding blog. 

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  – Images © 2011 Katie Byram Photography

Katie Byram 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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