January 12th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
This afternoon on the blog we’re bringing you another glorious helping of real wedding inspiration in the form of Natalie and Richard’s beautiful big day at Middleton Hall.
To match the fine setting, bride Natalie came up with a simple and elegant theme comprising of romantic candlelight and white and green blooms.
The style stakes were kept high in terms of attire too, with Natalie looking picture perfect in a lace Pronovias gown and Richard a dapper groom in a textured navy suit and dicky bow!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Jamie Penfold Photography.
natalie says: We got engaged at the top of a rock in Monserrat, Barcelona, on 29th September 2013. It was a really beautiful day!
Our wedding took place on 3rd October 2015, at Middleton Hall in Belford, Northumberland. We loved how elegant Middleton Hall was and that we could have the venue for the weekend with our friends and family being able to stay for the duration. It was perfect.
We didn’t have a theme as such, but we just knew that we wanted an elegant and chic wedding with plenty of candles and all white flowers with some green foliage. As such, we went for a simple white colour scheme with mint and pale green touches.
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December 16th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Today’s couple had made their minds up about one key element of their wedding before the proposal had even taken place – the venue. For David and Lucy fell head over heels for the gorgeous Jesmond Dene House from the very first time they visited.
With the setting taken care of, David and Lucy built in a pretty theme using burlap and lace along with touches of pink which featured in the bridesmaid dresses and beautiful blooms.
With images by most excellent Brides Up North Sponsor, Jamie Penfold Photography.
lucy says: David proposed at Jesmond Dene House in the middle of the restaurant (mid-meal) on the 2nd November 2013 after we’d gone, accidentally, to a wedding fare a couple months beforehand and fallen in love with the building. After that, David came up with a plan to propose, and as both of us are obsessed with great customer service, David wanted to go and stay there to make sure Jesmond Dene House was up to his standards! Luckily it was – and he proposed!
We booked the wedding for 15th of August 2015 at Jesmond Dene House. It holds a special place in our hearts as it was where David proposed and we both totally fell in love with its surroundings. We didn’t really have a set them as such but we did use a mixture of burlap and lace mixture throughout the wedding and chose a colour scheme of pinks with hints of green, silver and cream.
I decide on a strapless lace Pronovias gown which I bought from Mia Sposa Bridal Boutique in Newcastle Upon Tyne. As my something borrowed for the wedding, I had one of my best friend’s/bridesmaid’s lace veil – hopefully a tradition all of my friends will pass on.
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December 4th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Happy Fri-yay! To get your weekend off to a fabulously pretty start we’re sharing this gorgeous real wedding which took place up in the North East.
To complement the setting of their indoor ceremony at Woodhill Hall, Lee and Lianne decided on a rustic theme with pretty vintage touches added along the way which remained in keeping with their romantic colour scheme. In particular we love the blousy blooms and elegant detailed wedding cake!
For their evening celebrations the bride, groom and their guests then moved onto a beautifully decorated tepee in the venue’s grounds, where the real party got underway!
With images by Jamie Penfold Photography.
lianne says: We got engaged whilst on holiday in Benalmadena, southern Spain. On the way to a restaurant on the harbour we took a romantic stroll along the pier to a lighthouse for what I thought was to take some photos. Lee then asked me to close my eyes and when I opened them he was down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
We got married on Saturday 18th July 2015, at Woodhill Hall, Otterburn, Northumberland.
In terms of the venue we were looking for something a bit different and less traditional. When we walked into Woodhill Hall we instantly looked at each other and said what a lovely feeling the venue had. The fact we had the hall to ourselves for a weekend with 13 rooms to have our family and friends stay with us made it so much more personal. There was no doubt after we took our first viewing it was the right venue for us.
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June 17th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
If you’re currently craving a sunny holiday abroad today’s real wedding is going to make you want it all the more.
Antony and Rhonda left their Liverpool roots behind to wed in a gorgeous villa destination wedding in Cala de Mijas, Spain, surrounded by their nearest and dearest.
The pristine white villa against the flawless blue skies provided the perfect setting for the couple’s romantically themed wedding, with touches of white, silver and pale pink.
Spending a week abroad meant everyone was fully relaxed and ready to party (with great tans) when the big day arrived which made for a chilled out yet highly enjoyable wedding.
So pack your sunnies, flip-flops and swimwear as we jet off to southern Spain.
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Jamie Penfold Photography.
rhonda says: We were visting Puerto Banus for a weekend and while we were there Tony decided that we should go for a long walk then a nice meal. While we were walking along the harbour Tony noticed a lovely lighthouse that was on the other side of the harbour and suggested we go there. It was a really hot day and I was moaning all the way but once we got there it was lovely just sitting looking out to sea and there were a few people resting and enjoying the same view as us. Tony then said let’s ask that lady if she will take our picture so he went over and gave her our phone and then sat down next to me. Suddenly he went down on one knee asking me to marry him but all I could hear was the lady saying ‘Oh my God he’s proposing to her’, which made me laugh and poor Tony was still waiting for my answer – of course I said yes.
The people that were there all came over and congratulated us and we went over to the lady who took our picture whose name was Wendy to say thanks. As we started talking I noticed she was a Liverpool girl like me who had lived in Spain for years. She said if you get married here my good friend is a minster, then she told me her name and to my surprise I’d already emailed her before I went away for information on wedding venues abroad (how weird was that?) so after a good chat to Wendy we left, me with a big smile on my face and uncontrollable tears of joy. We went to the nearest bar to celebrate!
We met on the 23rd June 2007 and so wanted had originally wanted to marry on this date but most of our friends could not make that timing so we picked 14th June 2014 instead.
Our wedding took place in Cala de Mijas, Spain. We picked this location because we got engaged in the area and we chose Wendy’s best friend Lizzy as our minister. We looked at local wedding planners FiestaSol Weddings who were fantastic and found us a great venue in Mijas called the Hacienda San Jose and everything just fell into place and felt so right.
We didn’t have a theme really but with having our wedding at the Hacienda San Jose, which is such a beautiful place, we knew we wanted the day to have a really romantic feel to it. In terms of colours we had white, silver and pale pink with diamante touches – I wanted a little bit of bling for my romantic day.
When shopping for me dress I decided on an ivory laced mermaid dress which I found in Brides World, Liverpool. I felt the dress had a little bit of a Spanish look to it.
The men’s suits where from Slaters in Liverpool. Tony wore a midnight blue three piece suit made to measure with white shirt and ivory tie to match my dress.
We had eight bridesmaids who wore pale pink long chiffon dresses with diamante straps and waist bands, which I bought off the internet. Our nine groomsmen meanwhile wore midnight blue three piece suits with white shirts and pink ties to match the bridesmaids, they looked really smart!
Jamie Penfold flew over from Newcastle to shoot our wedding. He was organised and well-rehearsed at what we wanted. He blended into the background and captured things so naturally and perfectly. We would absolutely recommend him to others – he’s fantastic!
For my bouquet I had pink and white roses with little bit of gypsy grass, which were lovely. They were supplied by VG Florists Marbella.
My wedding planner Tara chapman from FiestaSol helped us with the decorations for our wedding villa and VG Florists did our beautiful centre pieces for the tables which were tall glass champagne vases turned upside down with pink and white large gypsy grass sprays with crystal tea lights hanging off them – they looked so colourful and pretty.
As favours we gave all the ladies white fans, which were a God send as it was so hot that day. For the men we did a whisky and cigar bar which surprisingly the ladies liked too!
Our cake, made by the fantastic Fiona from Sweet Things, Gibraltar, was three tiers with a different flavour for each: chocolate vanilla, strawberry and fruit. The cake was ivory with a lace pattern on it and pink flowers on top. It tasted as good as it looked!
For our wedding meal we had lots of lovely canapés to start which included serrano ham on crostini with tomato and a minty pesto, skewers of garlic prawns and crab and coriander tartlets. We then had a buffet menu of more delicious food including pepper sirloin steaks, swordfish steaks marinated with garlic and parsley and skewers of tiger prawns. Desserts were mini lemon tarts with fresh raspberries, raspberry sorbet with berries and chocolate love cake.
To entertain our guests had a great DJ called Ian Preston, who really got the crowd going. I picked him out after seeing him on the internet and the good feedback from my wedding planner Tara. We also had a Spanish guitarist playing through our cocktail hour, a sweet table for the kids and a chill out area with big white cushions, lantern fairy lights, tree raps and chandeliers.
We would definitely recommend our wedding venue to others – it is an amazing place! A private estate that is warm and welcoming and has all the amenities you could ask for. This wasn’t just our wedding venue, it was our home for the week!
As a bride I would have to say my favourite part of the day was seeing Tony as we didn’t get married until 5pm so I had a long wait and wanted him to see me in my dress. Likewise Tony’s favourite part was seeing me.
For our honeymoon we decided to go back to Mijas where we got married. When we were there for our wedding we didn’t have much time to explore as guests were arriving each day and it was a very busy week so our honeymoon was just us two chilling out.
My top tips to other Brides Up North would be try not to get too stressed, enjoy your day, take it all in as well as going around all your guests on the day and spend time with your new husband/wife – the day goes so quick!
Going abroad was perfect for us. We had a lovely week in the sun with our family and friends, great wedding pictures, great food and great memories!
June 10th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Rather than having a specific theme, today’s couple chose to head further north, back to the groom’s roots for an elegantly styled wedding with Scottish influences.
Just looking at the idyllic countryside in the photos below it’s easy to see why Scotland makes a truly romantic setting for a couple’s big day (plus going on previous experiences those Scots certainly know how to throw a party!)
And we just love the guy’s tweed suits and tartan kilts, proving that men can be just as well dressed as the girls when it comes to a wedding. Well done boys, we like your style!
With images by Jamie Penfold Photography.
julia says: We got engaged on the morning of Christmas Day 2013. Paul woke me up about 5.30am (which I wasn’t pleased about) to open our presents. We opened our other presents first and we had put some tiny ‘message in a bottle’ ornaments on the Christmas tree which I had bought at a Christmas fair. His message to me was ‘will you marry me?’ and when I looked up he was holding the most beautiful engagement ring. I almost died of shock and burst into tears! Then I said yes!
We decided to set the date for Saturday 28th March 2015 as Paul didn’t want a long engagement so it was 15 months after he proposed. We had actually wanted to get married on Easter weekend but our venue was booked so we went for the weekend before instead.
We got married at Friars Carse Country House Hotel in Auldgirth, just north of Dumfries, Scotland. We hired the venue exclusively and would definitely recommend other couples doing that if they can as it meant the venue could concentrate on just us and we didn’t get any strangers in the photos!
Paul was born in Scotland and has lots of Scottish family so had his heart set on getting married in Scotland (even though I would have preferred a hot sunny beach wedding). We looked at a couple of venues around that area but as soon as we visited Friars Carse Country House we fell in love with it and booked straight away.
We didn’t really have a theme but certain colours featured throughout the wedding; tables/runners were champagne and pearl settings, the bridesmaids dresses were silver/grey full length dresses and the men wore grey tweed kilts.
My dress was a Ronald Joyce Victoria design from Brides Dream in Walkergate, Newcastle. I had tried on so many dresses but when I tried this one it had everything I wanted and was flattering for my curvy figure. It was also quite different to others I’d seen. My bridesmaids wore full-length silver/grey dresses which I ordered online and had adjusted.
As a special touch, I bought myself and the bridesmaids matching pyjama sets to wear when we were getting ready on the morning of the wedding. The night before all the girls came to the bridal suite for fizz and giggles while the boys gathered in the bar/snooker room.
Paul wore a grey tweed kilt set from MacGregor and McDuff in Ayr and his groomsmen wore the same.
Jamie of Jamie Penfold Photography took our wedding photos and we would absolutely recommend him to others! He was amazing from start to finish and worked so hard to ensure the pictures were stunning, and they really are. We are so pleased and can relive the day anytime we want as the pictures tell the story of the day so well.
I carried a round bouquet of cream roses with pearl decoration supplied by Flowers by Fiona in Moffat, Scotland. Fiona also provided the bridesmaids’ flowers and buttonholes for the bridal party.
For the reception, we hired pearl and rose centrepieces, our table runners and chair covers and sashes and brooches from Charlotte Boyd in Dumfries, Scotland. I also ordered cute little blackboards with easels for the name settings and larger ones for the table names from Confetti.co.uk.
We gave our male guests Subbuteo football player bottle openers as favours and the ladies received a heart shaped wine stopper.
When it came to food, we had a three-tier round ivory sponge wedding cake with piping and pearl decorations and roses, which was made by Cakes By Becky in Crawcrook, Newcastle.
To keep guests entertained we hired a fantastic band who Paul had seen locally called The Maverick Rejects. They travelled up to the venue and were absolutely brilliant.
We would definitely recommend our wedding venue to other brides and grooms. It was a fantastic venue and luckily the weather held for our photos! We will definitely return there as the staff were all brilliant.
Walking down the wooden staircase towards the aisle seeing everyone who had made the effort to be there for us, and then seeing Paul break into a huge smile when I got to the front has to be my favourite part of the day. The whole day was amazing though!
For our honeymoon we went to Aquila Elounda Village Hotel in Elounda, Crete, in May. We wanted to have a little gap after the wedding and so booked it as something to look forward to. It was a five star adults-only all-inclusive holiday, so perfect for relaxation!
My top tips to other Bride Up North would be to make sure you have someone there who you can trust to get everything done and make sure the venue are clear the day before on every small thing you want doing, as you won’t be around to manage it all. Luckily the duty manager at our venue (Xavier) was absolutely first class, so between him and my two fab bridesmaids I didn’t have to worry about anything and could just enjoy the day.
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December 26th, 2014 | Julia Braime
Merry Christmas! Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a break for the festive season, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely.
Usual service will recommence on Monday 5th January 2015 (with some big news!) but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far this year. Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your Real Wedding was one of our top picks for 2014.
Today’s real wedding is all kinds of epic! Not only did bride Katy totally rock her 50s frock and bespoke headwear, but she and her bridesmaids also hitched a ride on the Metro to the ceremony, then finished things off with one massive street party wedding.
And after all that turkey, fish & chips for supper is sounding good..!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Jamie Penfold Photography.
katy says: Andrew proposed last summer when we were on holiday in New York.
Everyone had been nagging Andrew to propose for months and before we went he gave me ‘the New York talk’ several times – saying very seriously for me not to expect him to propose in New York and that he didn’t want me to ruin the holiday by being all miserable the whole time we were there because he hadn’t proposed.
After the flight to New York I was tired and a bit tetchy and we almost had a row at the airport but something at the back of my mind thinking ‘just be nice, we’re on holiday’. I was glad I was as when we got to our hotel room I spotted an ice bucket with a bottle of champagne and 2 glasses and a note in front. I went to investigate (in case it was a freebie) and on the note it read ‘Katy will you marry me’ – I turned round and Andrew was down on one knee.
I’m normally pretty chatty but I was so gobsmacked I wept for about 5 minutes – Andrew actually had to prompt me to say ‘yes’. I’d arranged the holiday and wouldn’t have even thought Andrew would have known where we were staying so was totally blown away that he’d organised such a wonderful surprise.
We were married on 19th June 2014. The ceremony was in the Council Chamber at Newcastle Civic Centre and the reception was in the back lane of the terrace my parents live on!
The reception was first – my parents still live in the house I grew up in. It’s a very social street and ever since a big party to celebrate the millennium they’ve held regular street dos and ‘back lane BBQs’ every summer. It was important to both of us that the whole wedding be as personal as possible, including the venue – so a back lane party was an obvious choice. All the neighbours were fab – when my folks approached them about using the lane not only did they say yes but everyone offered to help, and let us use their back gardens too.
For the ceremony we aren’t religious but still wanted a venue that meant something to us (and was big enough to host over 150 guests). My grandfather was an alderman and Councillor and sat in the (then very new) Council Chamber at the Civic Centre.
As a Geordie away from home I wanted Newcastle to be a big part of the wedding. Other than that it was just all about making it as personal as possible. Dresses, hair and make-up were 50s style.
We chose a teal colour scheme (inspired by the top of the Civic Centre and the Tyne Bridge!)
My shoes were from BHS and I customised them with peacock tail feathers, pearls and buttons.
I took my dress to be altered at a local dress maker as it needed taking in a bit. They totally let me down and after a series of mishaps (not doing the alterations when they said they would, not turning up at the shop when I was due to collect) I finally got my dress back only to discover, with just 10 days to go before the wedding, they’d taken it in way more than they were supposed to. I could just get into it but it was too tight to sit down/eat/breath!
Fortunately Honeypie had one readymade sample of a dress in a different design in my size which they posted straight out. The only downside being that it had a peach skirt which really wouldn’t have gone with all my peacock accessories.
I could get away with outfit number one for the ceremony and then would wear dress number two for the reception. I decided that if I was having to change dress I would brazen it out and go for a full outfit change. I sent Adrienne a photo of the new dress and my wedding hair and asked her to bring any head pieces she thought would go into her shop on the Saturday. When I got there, she said she hadn’t had anything the thought would be just right so had made me a new one from scratch. I loved my silver evening headpiece – she really pulled out all the stops and helped turn a crisis into a positive.
The bridesmaids had dresses with the inverse colour scheme to mine from Honeypie. I made peacock hair clips for them to tie in with my headpiece.
All the boys wore their own suits but had a variety of teal neckwear from Tom Sawyer.
I made button bouquets for me and the grownup bridesmaids (the younger two had button horseshoes). I did buy some buttons but friends, family and colleagues from work all dug out granny’s button boxes and I also wired in fabric flowers from my parents’ wedding cake, various trinkets and grand parents’ and great grandparents’ engagement rings. It was my old, new, borrowed and blue all in one. With my change of outfit for the evening I swapped the bouquet for a Kate Spade Mr&Mrs number plate clutch!
I got the metro to the ceremony – then we’d hired a vintage Routemaster to take the bridal party and groomsmen for photos and back to the reception.
My mum was really dubious about going on the metro but I was adamant about it. I’m so glad we did as it was so much fun and we got some fab photos. The looks on people’s faces as they pulled into Benton metro station and saw us on the platform were an absolute picture.
It was really important to make the wedding as personal as possible, using people we knew wherever possible. This meant there were quite a lot of special touches! But I think it’s important to remember not to let the special touches stress you out.
My godfather is an artist and so I asked him to do a painting for us to use on all of the stationery. It was turquoise to tie in with the colour theme and had a seahorse (to echo the top of the Civic Centre) and peacock (as I’d already decided peacock feathers were going to be part of my outfit).
I sewed 300m of bunting (assisted by mother in law, Andrew and best friend Lucy) and my mum made hundreds of tissue pompoms and fans. They had a pompom fluffing party the week before the wedding with all the neighbours.
We had fish and chips for dinner and so to tie in with the theme I made a newspaper with stories about us and used half pages of it as place mats. There were crosswords and word searches on the back which proved a good ice breaker at the tables.
As we were in the back lane and gardens I’d got some mini gnomes to use for table numbers. I had a feeling these would not make it unscathed through the wedding – by the end of the night we were all swigging port out of them!
It worked out as cheap to buy antique cutlery as it was to hire it so we spent months scouring antique and flea markets for sets. We’ve got some lovely ones to keep and will give the rest to the charity shop.
We’re the Meades and so my mum had some mini bottles of Lindesfarne Mead made up for with our names on the label on the back as a surprise.
As the back lane wasn’t a typical venue we did the table plan on a blown up plan of the street so people knew where everything else was as well as their table. We always play drinking games during the speeches at other people’s wedding so we also did a big sweepstake on the table plan.
The specialist touch of all was all of the neighbours. We hadn’t managed to set everything up on the Friday night so all the neighbours came out at 8am on the Saturday morning to help set out all the tables and chairs. It was a real team effort.
One of the neighbours is in a band and the street always head out en masse to support them when they play gigs locally so they were the obvious choice for music. They played in their garage and we had the dancing out in the lane. They were fab.
We had wedding cheese from The Cheese Board in Harrogate. Complete with knitted mice in miniature versions of our outfits that one of my colleagues made. I hand stitched some mini bunting too.
Our chip supper was by Clems Fish and Chips.
The whole day was amazing – better than I could have ever imagined.
But bar far the best bit – and certainly the most emotional for me was the ceremony itself. Closely followed by just about every other part of the day. Even the pouring rain we had coming out of the ceremony was fun.
For our honeymoon we did a road trip from Las Vegas to San Francisco via Death Valley, Yosemite and the Pacific Highway.
My top tip for Brides Up North is that the most important bit of the wedding is where the two of you stand at the front and do your ‘I do’s. All the rest is window dressing.
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