March 28th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
When mathematicians Aaron and Katie decided to get hitched, their love of all things numeric found their way into their planning; from the Venn diagrams on their Save the Dates, to infinity symbols on their stationery.
And what a day it was, with nods to Katie’s Scottish heritage in the gorgeous blooms, Jimmy Choo heels and a menu that’s guaranteed to make you drool rather inelegantly over your keyboard. We’re sorry (not sorry).
With photography by Brides Up North Sponsor Bethany Clarke Wedding Photography
katie says: Aaron and I got engaged in May 2014. Aaron and I had planned a long weekend away in Northumberland as a treat, and we spent one day in a beautiful fishing village called Craster. We were walking around a totally deserted castle, taking in the beautiful views when he dropped to one knee and said “I have something else I want to ask you”. In all honesty, it was a complete shock. He spent a good minute getting a wet knee, assuring me he was serious, he‘d asked my dad, and that he was taking me to buy a ring the following weekend. Of course, I said yes!
We got married on 10th September 2016 at Rise Hall in the East Riding of Yorkshire. Rise Hall was suggested to us by a friend, and it got pushed down the list due to the distance from Leeds. However, the minute (and I mean the actual minute) we walked into Rise Hall and were greeted by Helen (the lady of the house) we just knew it was everything we wanted.
We were able to have exactly the type of wedding we wanted at Rise Hall – you have the venue from Friday until Sunday. We had our family and wedding party join us for an informal meal on the Friday night, which was wonderful.
Our blessing took place at All Saints Church, about half-a-mile down the lane from the Hall and was overseen by Rev Andy Simpson, the vespa-driving, guitar-playing vicar. We had countless compliments about Andy; he really and truly made our blessing one of the best parts of the day.
We didn’t have a theme for our wedding – instead, we had lots of things that mean a lot to us. The flowers in the bouquets, the boys’ buttonholes and the ladies’ corsages had thistles in them and they were tied together with tartan ribbon to reflect the fact that I was born and grew up in Scotland. Aaron has supported Middlesbrough Football Club since he was tiny, so our table names were a selection of his favourite Middlesbrough players. We also both studied Maths at university, so our save the dates were Venn-diagrams, and our invites and other stationery were embossed with an infinity symbol.
I chose a Jenny Packham gown called Lilya, which I bought from Ava Rose Hamilton in Silsden. As soon as we got engaged, so many people said “Oh, I can just see you in a Jenny Packham gown!” However, I refused to try them on as they were way out of my price range. I tried on quite a few gowns, and there were definitely a few that I could have happily got married in. As luck would have it, though, Ava Rose were having a sample sale on their Jenny Packham dresses, so I went along (first in the queue with two of my friends). Lilya was the first one I tried on and I loved it so much. However, I definitely didn’t have that ‘this is the one’ moment that everyone talks about – I spent a good hour taking it off and on again while deciding. Eventually I bought it, and also went for a long cream veil. My shoes were Jimmy Choo Langs, in steel grey glitter. My dress had a slit up the front, so I knew they’d also be on show!
On the morning of the wedding, Aaron sent a beautiful bottle of champagne to my room, along with a Tiffany infinity bracelet he’d bought as a wedding present.
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February 15th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
Given that we’re super excited about our Brides Up North ‘Pop-up Wedfest’ at The Bowdon Rooms in Altrincham next Sunday 26th February, we thought it best to showcase how fabulous the venue is with a real wedding that made use of its versatile function space.
Craving a relaxed yet fun big day, bride and groom Hayley and Tim chose The Bowdon Rooms as the ideal venue for their evening reception following a low-key ceremony at Altrincham Town Hall.
Keen to stray away from tradition, the couple threw the ‘wedding rule book’ out of the window and made the day all about what suited them – from posh frocks, suits and Jimmy Choos to an informal afternoon tea, signature cocktails and one big evening party.
So ladies, if you like what you see be sure to come view The Bowdon Rooms for yourselves at our event between 11am and 3pm on Sunday 26th February, by registering here (Hayley and Tim did!)
With images by Stuart Hornby Photography
hayley says: We got engaged on Christmas Eve 2015 at our local Italian restaurant Coco’s in Altrincham. It was totally unexpected as after us both being married before, we had pretty much ruled it out. Tim chose my favourite day of the year to propose and I was truly stunned! One of our daughter’s Amelia was with us on the evening and she screamed louder than I did!
We chose Friday 28th October 2016 for the wedding. I’m a little impatient and didn’t want to wait too long!
We got married at Altrincham Town Hall, which was beautiful, followed by pictures in Altrincham Market House, and afternoon tea and cocktails at the Sugar Junction in Altrincham. We for our evening reception by many more guests and partied the night away at the nearby Bowdon Rooms. We were very keen to have a low-key wedding, (despite going full out on the Justin Alexander gown and Jimmy Choo shoes of course!) and our day was truly perfect in every way.
With us both having been married before we very much wanted to shy away from tradition, so apart from posh frocks and a lovely suit, everything was kept very informal, hence the stand-up afternoon tea and cocktails! We did add just a touch of vintage styling.
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January 25th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
Matfen Hall provides the dazzling backdrop to today’s real wedding on the blog.
The special couple – Emma and Mike – got engaged on their ten-year anniversary while in the picturesque city of Rome and then tied the knot in Northumberland a year later.
Opting for a simple yet classic white themed wedding, the bride and groom complemented this traditional look with a soft palette of silver grey and peachy pink, plus some of the most beautiful floral arrangements of white hydrangea and gyp we have ever seen.
With images by Darren Irwin Photography.
emma says: To celebrate our ten-year anniversary in September 2015, we took a very special trip to Holy Island, spending time outdoors taking in the beautiful Northumberland coast. It was perfect! We then flew straight out to Rome. Mike had visited Rome on a university trip and always said he would take me there one day. On our first full day in the beautiful city we visited the Trevi Fountain, Pantheon and Piazza Navona, but the best was saved till last.
It was 7pm and the sun was setting at the Spanish Steps, we found a quiet spot on the rooftop of a little wine bar overlooking the steps. I was snapping away with the camera whilst Mike disappeared. The waiter then appeared, handed me a phone and said: “Madam, would you please play this video.”
Mike had recorded himself outside of our school, where we first met, and outside my house, where we shared our first kiss. The video continued to play photo snap shots of our lives together, from when we first met to the present day. I was in floods of (happy) tears and by the time it finished, Mike appeared by my side, got down on one knee and that’s when he proposed!
We got married on 4th September 2016, one year after our engagement.
In terms of the venue, we really wanted our entire day to be spent in one location, as opposed to travelling from place to place, so when we visited Matfen Hall it ticked every box. The Great Hall where the ceremony took place feels like a church setting and is such an impressive room. The grounds are immaculate and there is so much outside space where guests can enjoy their welcome drinks. There’s also a separate bar and dining room, as well as a vault bar downstairs, which has a club-like atmosphere for a real party setting. We had sparklers out in the courtyard area, too.
The majority of our accessories were white, to match our idea of a traditional white wedding. We complemented this with a silver grey and soft peachy pink colour scheme.
When it came to dress shopping, Si Bridal in Low Fell, had caught my eye, as I drive past their window every day and the dresses on display always look stunning! I knew the style of dress that wouldn’t suit me, so that was my starting point. Pinterest was a massive help. I showed my ideas to the girls in the shop and they picked out a selection of dresses they thought I might like – and my dress – the Demetrios 595, was one of them! The detailing on my dress was incredible; a mixture of lace and beading, as well as to the back. The dress I tried on was ivory with a nude underlay – couture in style – however I ordered it white on white, in keeping with the theme of the wedding. It was made in New York and sent over a few months later.
My shoes were from Jimmy Choo Lottie sandals in champagne glitter. I wanted to get married in Choos, as I knew this would probably be the first and last pair I would ever have the pleasure of owning! They were just perfect. Super glittery and comfortable.
Mike wore a full three-piece suit from Next in navy blue, with a silver tie, pocket chief, tie clip and cuff links. He also wore a brown belt and brown leather shoes. The best man, groomsman and fathers also wore the same.
The adult bridesmaids wore silver grey floor-length dresses from the Debut range in Debenhams. Meanwhile, the younger bridesmaids and ring bearer wore floor length peachy pink dresses from BHS. They all wore their own shoes in whichever style they preferred, with the glitter theme.
January 16th, 2017 | Julia Braime
Though Christmas has been and gone it’s still very much winter outdoors and so to start the week in style we’re sharing the seasonal wedding of Stuart and Kerry. Taking place in late December, their big day celebrations include subtle hints to the season and a stunning white, midnight blue and metallic colour scheme.
We adore the atmospheric candle light décor, elegant floral displays and sparkling cake, not to mention Kerry’s gorgeous Suzanne Neville dress – pure perfection!
With images by Andy Gaines.
kerry says: We got engaged on October 5th 2013, in the mirror garden at the Palace of Versaille, Paris. The lake there had fountains in that played to classical music. Stuart said we have the fountains on one side and a statue of Venus on the other, then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
We set the date for 28th December 2014. We decided we wanted a small, intimate wedding and Christmas time seemed ideal for this.
Our chosen venue was Middleton Lodge in North Yorkshire. It ticked all of our boxes and meant that we could get married on site and get ready in our rooms. It is a beautiful home and has a really cool cellar bar to party in. It also wasn’t too far for relatives and friends to travel. I also love the area having spent a lot of time at my auntie and uncle’s house nearby.
The venue had also recently opened up a restaurant called The Coach House and guest rooms in the grounds. This meant we could have people stay there as well as the house. We chose to have dinner at The Coach House the night before the wedding with our family and friends; they gave us the private dining room and the food was fabulous. It was also a good celebration for my dad’s birthday on the 27th.
I gave up on a theme for the wedding quite early and decided I wanted it to be elegant, informal but timeless. So I stuck with a colour theme of white, silver and golds for the flowers, cake and decorations. The bridesmaids wore midnight blue, which suited them all and again, I hoped it would look elegant and wouldn’t make us all cringe in 20 years when we look back on photos!
Stuart also requested that all of the males who attended that had medals, wear them. Stuart’s always had an interest in them after learning about the medals his grandfather was awarded in WWII; he also has his own from serving as a police officer. Stuart asked his nephew to wear miniatures of his late grandpa’s medals, which made him really proud as his grandpa was very important to him.
When it came choosing my dress, I selected a simple, fitted gown from Suzanne Neville called Memoire, which was from the Vintage Rose 2014 collection. It was ivory with pearls scattered across the top front and back. Suzanne fitted a corset for me so that I didn’t have to worry about finding the right underwear! I had seen it in on the website before I went for my appointment. I had a fine silk cathedral veil with tiny pearls embroidered on. Despite trying many on before, I just knew I would find my dress at Suzanne’s showroom. She was lovely, as were all of her staff.
Cat Johnson, from Harrogate, did my make-up as well as my mama’s and all of the bridesmaids. She did a brilliant job and my godmother’s daughter used her for her wedding last year.
December 9th, 2016 | Alexis Forsyth
To finish off a seriously pretty on the blog, the stunning Grade II listed Weston Hall in Staffordshire, provides the elegant Elizabethan backdrop to not only our couple’s engagement but their wedding day, too.
Dressed in a gorgeous Vera Wang mermaid style gown, Laura looked every inch the beautiful bride. And with a dreamy palette of rose, blush pink and champagne combined with a dazzling sprinkle of gold – this, we think, is a wedding exuding all things classically chic and romantic.
With images by Fairclough Photography.
laura says: For his proposal, Ryan booked us a night away at Weston Hall in Stafford, as he knew how much I loved it there. When we checked into our lovely room I was hanging out of the window admiring the view of the terrace (dreaming of one day getting married there) then when I turned around he was on one knee with a huge grin on his face holding the most perfect ring! At first I thought he was joking but soon enough realised what he was actually asking. After all the crying, I remembered I to say yes!
The morning after the night before we went down for breakfast and I asked to see the Wedding planner at Weston Hall – there’s no time like the present, right?
We knew we wanted a spring wedding so didn’t hesitate to book for the 27th May 2016, this was the Friday before the bank holiday and knew it was the perfect date! May is one of my favourite months, too, I just love spring and know there can be some beautiful sunny days in the month of May.
We got married at the prettiest church just down the road from Weston Hall, called St Andrews. Whenever we had drove past we always admired how quaint it looked. With all the beautiful blossom trees lining the church path, it seemed too perfect having the wedding ceremony there then afterwards celebrating at Weston Hall.
We didn’t have a theme as such, all I knew was that I wanted it to look timeless and Weston Hall gave me the perfect backdrop to do so.
I chose a romantic colour palette consisting of rose, blush pink, nudes, champagne and lots of gold for a bit of glamour! I had these colours in mind from the beginning so when I found the bridesmaid dresses it all followed from there.
I tried on what felt like hundreds of wedding dresses, realising that the mermaid style was what I really wanted. I had always loved the Vera Wang Gemma dress and had it at the back on my mind, so I decided to go for it as I was only going to get married once – and I am pleased that I did! When I tried it on, nothing compared; I just knew that dress was made for me. I felt a million dollars! I teamed it with some stunning bespoke accessories from Joan Brown Vintage in Leek, Staffordshire, and some amazing Jimmy Choo’s to finish it all off!
Ryan wore a really nice navy blue three-piece fitted suit from Next’s Signature collection with a skinny navy blue tie, tan brogues and belt. He looked very dapper! The groomsmen wore the same Signature suits from Next as Ryan.
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December 8th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
Today’s real wedding comes courtesy of Brides Up North reader Laura, and oh boy, is it a good one!
From the choice of venue through to the stylish colour scheme, fabulous blooms and Laura’s incredible dress, we adore everything about this wedding, which was planned in just four months. Yep, you read right, four months!
We’re also thrilled to see lots of our fabulous Sponsor suppliers contributing to this gorgeous celebration (if you’re on the hunt for talented professionals to make your day perfect, be sure to take a look at our ‘Suppliers We Love’ online directory).
Laura and Andrew wanted a relaxed and informal big day with a rockin’ party atmosphere, and by the looks of things, that’s exactly what they got!
With images by York Place Studios.
laura says: We got engaged at home, in September 2015. It was a total surprise – we have been together for ten years, after meeting at Uni. We’d recently moved into our new home and Andrew got up early to do some painting, when I got up he’d written “will you marry me” on the wall!
We booked the wedding for 12th March 2016, as we fell in love with our venue – Middleton Lodge in North Yorkshire – as soon as we saw it and they had an opening for this date. It meant that we had just four months from viewing the venue to the wedding day!
Middleton Lodge had everything we were looking for – character yet it still felt relaxed. We wanted the wedding to be a whole weekend party without people having to worry about taxis and getting home. At Middleton Lodge everyone could stay and the house was exclusively ours for the weekend. We also immediately loved the cellar bar as it was totally different from the house and knew we’d completely change the dynamic of the day when we went down there in the evening.
We didn’t have a wedding theme as such, things were just relaxed and informal, though we wanted it to have a real party atmosphere.
Our colour scheme was navy and copper. We loved the colours as we’d seen them a lot in home interiors but we’d not seen them being used for weddings.
My wedding dress was a 50’s inspired Caroline Castigliano dress, called Hepburn, from The Bridal Collection in Harrogate. It had a very full skirt but other than that was very plain and simple. The dress was the one thing I didn’t want to compromise on if we’re going to organise the whole wedding in four months so I chose this before we committed to the venue and date. My shoes were Jimmy Choos.
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