Brides Up North

Look Book: The Princess Diaries

July 17th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Hindi - Cymbeline

Hindi by Cymbeline

Although I’m not engaged, I’ve had the pleasure of slipping into some wonderful wedding gowns due to my line of work. Like many other gals I’ve often dreamt about the style of dress I might wear, should I ever make it down the aisle. For me it’s always been a slim-line gown that I’d see myself saying my ‘I dos’ in, but I have to admit, when you step into a voluminous princess-style gown, something very magic happens.

I think it’s something to do with the pretty layers of tulle, or perhaps the detailed bodice that chinches in at the waist before projecting into a large circular skirt. Childhood perceptions may also have something to do it. I (as I’m sure many others young girls did) thought as a child that brides were a form of princess and therefore the big sparkling dress is all part and parcel.

That magical feeling I’ve experienced when donning such a dress means I now couldn’t rule it out as an option, though it certainly doesn’t mean I’ll be going all ‘My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding’ on my groom. There are numerous different styles of princess gowns available; from jewel encrusted, highly detailed designs, to simple and elegant creations (similar to the gown picked by ultimate princess Kate Middleton, for her big day).

So if you want to slip into a big, beautiful gown when you get hitched, I have some suggestions of which designers to look to.

8724 - Justin Alexander

8724 by Justin Alexander

Princess perfect is one style that Justin Alexander has mastered to a tee. The 8724 design is one of my absolute favourites – beaded bodice, sweetheart neckline, tulle ball gown skirt – tick, tick, tick! For those wanting a little lace detail, the regal 8732 satin ball gown, featuring a lace and tulle overlay, is a stunning option and offers just a hint of sparkle in its subtle pearl, crystal and sequin belt. The 8712 is more Middleton with 3/4 sleeves, a lovely choice for brides not wanting to expose the tops of their arms.

8712 - Justin Alexander

8712 by Justin Alexander

Volume and layers are key to a magical gown so Alexander’s 8742 design also makes my lust list. Cymbeline is another designer with plenty of voluminous gowns on offer. Hada is the queen of the creations boasting an immense ball gown skirt. Hadny and Harmo are equally stately dresses, though perhaps slightly easier to manoeuvre in. Meanwhile, for brides who want the best of both worlds, the stunning Hindi design provides a sophisticated slim-line dress with princess-style tulle layers at the back.

Hadny - Cymbeline

Hadny by Cymbeline

Hada - Cymbeline

Hada by Cymbeline

Harmo - Cymbeline

Harmo by Cymbeline

Maggie Sottero is a front-runner in princess attire too. The Esme Marie gown is enough to make brides go weak at the knees with its fully encrusted Swarovski crystal bodice and glamorous chic organza skirt. The whimsical appearance of Roseabel is also well worth swooning over with its classic tulle ball gown creating an irresistible air of romance.

Esme Marie by Maggie Sottero

Esme Marie by Maggie Sottero

Corbin by Maggie Sottero

Corbin by Maggie Sottero

Dawson by Maggie Sottero

Dawson by Maggie Sottero

Felicity by Maggie Sottero

Felicity by Maggie Sottero

And I’ve saved the best news until last – Alfred Angelo has actually designed a Disney collection with dresses fit for every type of princess; from the Belles, Jasmines and Cinderellas among us, to the Rapunzels, Snow Whites and Ariels. For me standout designs include Sleeping Beauty 238 with fascinating fairy-tale layers, plus floral, rhinestone, crystal and sequin detail. As a huge Aladdin fan I’d quite like to be Jasmine, though I fear sourcing a magic carpet to get me to the venue may be somewhat challenging!

Are you planning on indulging your inner princess on your big day?  We’d love to know!

225 Belle - Alfred Angelo

225 Belle by Alfred Angelo

227 Sleeping Beauty -  Alfred Angelo

227 Sleeping Beauty by Alfred Angelo

238 Sleeping Beauty -  Alfred Angelo

238 Sleeping Beauty by Alfred Angelo

Cinderella -  Alfred Angelo

Cinderella by Alfred Angelo

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 as credited

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Deco Does It. A Modern Art Deco Wedding Inspiration Shoot In Morecambe.

April 30th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Julie Lomax Photography

Earlier this spring a group of North West wedding suppliers got together to collaborate on a contemporary art deco styled wedding photo-shoot at The Midland Hotel in Morecambe on the North West coast.

Brides Up North exhibitors (you can meet them both at our Hilltop Country House event in just under two weeks – click here for details) photographer Julie Lomax and cake specialist Rachel Hanna of Marie Antoinette Cakes teamed up with Vicky Cruse at The Midland Hotel to create something really special. The Midland was originally built in 1933 and is the epitome of art deco elegance and glamour. In 2013 it was lovingly restored and transformed to perfectly blend the original grandeur with a luxurious modernist style.

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie says: As the hotel sits right along the Lancashire coastline, it provides the perfect setting for a wedding filled with seaside chic with incredible views, particularly from the fantastic bridal suite with its huge secluded balcony featuring a private hot tub!

Inside the hotel you can make use of several different spaces for your wedding but it’s the huge Art Deco staircase that we really love with elegant sweeping lines that just seem to go on forever, a chance to get some truly unique and timeless photographs.

The team spent a long time searching for the perfect suppliers to collaborate with and certainly struck gold with a beautiful selection of headpieces, statement jewellery, flowers, dresses and a classic black tuxedo.

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

I was keen to keep the shoot as in-keeping with my natural-light style as possible, something that was relatively easy at The Midland given it’s huge windows. Capturing all of the different details whilst strongly featuring the character of the hotel was something really important to me and I spent time assessing the location prior to the shoot to ensure that I got the best photos possible on the day.

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

The beautiful dresses were a selection of beaded Jenny Packham gowns – Rose, Eden and Esme from Mears Ghyll Bridal in Lancaster who also stock a wonderful selection of gowns from designers Alan Hannah, Charlotte Balbier and Suzanne Neville. The stunningly simple Maggie Sottero Oriana dress is from Butterfly Bridal in Lancaster who are also stockists of gowns by Justin Alexander and Essense Australia.

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Samantha from Isobel Hind Couture is a very talented jewellery designer and her collection of jewellery and headpieces is really something special. Her unique style translates wonderfully to this collection which caught the eye of celebrity stylist and designer Kate Halfpenny who now stocks pieces from the range in her London showroom.

Jane from HF Couture in North Yorkshire has been designing bespoke and unique headdresses, tiaras and bouquets for over five years and they really are beautiful. If you’re looking for a one off piece that will fit perfectly with your dress then look no further. Jane has recently been commissioned by British bridal designer Madeline Isaac-James to create a range of accessories to match her 2015 bridal collection.

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

A wedding isn’t complete without flowers and Bolton-based florist Victoria from Lancashire Floristry didn’t disappoint when she created two stunning bridal arrangements with matching buttonholes for the groom. The first was a collection of black call lillies, ivory roses, brunia, black eyed chins and gorgeous succulents. Victoria also made an amazing art deco style fan of flowers using pipped hyacinth heads, tulips and beautiful white orchids, all wired together with a jewel beads.

Julie Lomax Photography

Rachel, my fellow organiser, from Marie Antoinette Cakes created a black, white and silver art deco themed cake for the shoot with clean lines, sharp edges, geometric shapes and patterns. Her award winning cakes are renowned for their eye catching design and deliciously moreish recipes. Rachel uses the best quality ingredients and takes the time to really understand your cake requirements in a free, no obligation consultation. Her designs include the increasingly popular Simply Antoinette range which was launched in 2012 but bespoke designs are equally as in demand. Not only does she create tiered cakes but also makes cupcakes, cake tables, dessert tables and wedding favours.

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Debra from Ruby Red Lips Makeup is based at her studio at the beautiful Last Drop Village in Bolton and has a real passion for makeup and really making you and your bridal party feel extra special. Debra takes the time to really understood your skin and the look you want to create in a pre-wedding trial so that everything on the day runs smoothly and you and your bridal party can really enjoy the experience and feel pampered. For this shoot so created really strong eyes and lips and took inspiration from the flowers with deep purple on the eye lids and on the lips.

Alex Lee from Sarah’s Hair in Bolton was the hair stylist on the day and spent time beforehand understanding the models hair, researching art deco hair styles and understanding the headpieces before deciding upon a style. She used thin tongs to create curls which were then softened to create a modern, softer version of the classic finger wave. Alex was then on hand throughout the course of the day to fix various headpieces into place which she made look a lot easier than it actually is!

Midland-153

Julie Lomax Photography

Julie Lomax Photography

Chelsea Leigh Edgar – Miss Bury 2014 – was the stunning bride for this wonderful shoot and looked amazing next to our groom, Peter Smithson. Chelsea is studying for a degree in Fine Art but enjoys modelling in her spare time having worked with me on previous shoots. 

Julie Lomax Photography

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Julie Lomax Photography

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Sparkling Romance. Justin Alexander For A Twinkly Vintage Wedding At Mitton Hall – Jennifer & Ryan

March 10th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Project Valentine

We’re all smiles in the Brides Up North office this morning after a very, very lovely day at our Brides Up North Super Showcase Grand Wedding Exhibition yesterday at Ramside Hall Hotel.  I commented on Facebook last night that I’ve not seen so many excited brides and grooms in one place for a while, and it was great to see you all – another cracker of a day!  Thank you to our fabulous exhibitors who packed the huge banqueting spaces with wedding pretty and each and every one of you who came along to support the Northern Revolution.

Snaps to you!

Right back to it this morning as we join Jennifer and Ryan for their twinkly vintage Real Wedding at Mitton Hall.  With images by Project Valentine, this is one sparkling celebration.  Take it easy this Monday morning, and feel the love…

Project Valentine

Jennifer says:  On my birthday (21st December 2012) there was an extra present under the tree which was a bunch of cupcakes made to look like roses with ‘Will You Marry Me?’ written on the centre one.

Project Valentine

We were married on 23rd December 2013 at Mitton Hall, Mitton, Whalley.  We chose the venue because it was a mixture of old and new. It is a 15th century building with old dark wood and balconies and has a new extension that is light and modern. 

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

I chose a vintage theme for the wedding.  I wanted to find a bridesmaid dress first that everyone would be happy with and decided that would be the colour scheme. These were ivory, pink and purple so we used this throughout the decorations.

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

I bought my dress from Lulu Browns in Whalley. It was a Justin Alexander dress, I fell in love with it when I saw it. It had the vintage lace feel but it was heavily embellished with sequins and beads.

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

ProjectValentineJennifer&Ryan-30

The bridesmaid dresses were from Debenhams, they were so different from anything else we had seen.  We bought all the suits from Next so everybody could keep them.

 Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Our photographers were called Project Valentine and they did a fabulous job. They focus more on natural shots and you hardly notice they are there which made the day very relaxed.

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

We found a lady called Chris who has a company called Beautifully Vintage. She did all the vintage table settings and decorations in the room and it looked stunning.

Project Valentine

We bought a four tier lemon cake from Marks and Spencer and decorated it the day before with matching flowers. 

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

I bought some artificial roses and made our bouquets myself. I used Christmas decorations and fancy beads to give them the vintage look.

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Our favourite part of the day was when all the ceremony and speeches had been done we could finally relax and enjoy the party with our guests. We used SJ Enterprises and they provided a DJ, chocolate fountain and casino tables so there wasn’t a gap between the night and day.

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

Project Valentine

For our honeymoon we are looking forward to going to Greece in the Summer. 

Project Valentine

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to seek help where appropriate.  I am quite creative and found it hard not to do everything by myself. I made all the stationery but it did stress me out slightly. The best thing I did was get suppliers to do the table dressing – it just made it so special. I even considered making the cake myself but I am glad we bought one in the end!

Project Valentine

Congratulations Jennifer & Ryan!

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 © 2014 Project Valentine

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

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You Are My Resolution. Justin Alexander & A Bird Cage Veil For A New Year’s Eve Real Wedding At Langley Castle – Amy & Anthony

February 20th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Paul Santos Photography

The turn of the year seems so long ago now doesn’t it?  After being deluged by storms and darkness, if anyone’s kept their New Year’s resolutions by now, it’ll be a small miracle, right? 

Well, funnily enough though, for once I have, so allow me a moment of smug!  Mine were simple – stress less, exercise more and prioritise the things (and folk) I love most.  So far I’m on the right track.  How are you checking in?  March is a new month after all…

Two people who are sure to have kept their resolutions and promises are today’s beautiful bride Amy and her new husband Anthony, who said their vows in front of friends and family in Hexham on New Year’s Eve.  This morning they are here to share their celebration with us.

With images by Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Amy says:  We got engaged on March 29th 2012, we had just been on a ride on the gondolas in Venice when Anthony popped the question.

Paul Santos Photography

We were married on December 31st 2013.  We had the most fantastic ceremony held at Hexham Abbey with a reception at Langley Castle.

We chose our venues based on the history and style of buildings.  We had wanted a very grand wedding with it being New Year’s Eve and wanted a day for everyone to remember.

Hexham Abbey was chosen to hold our ceremony as the religious side of things was taken very seriously at the Abbey making the day very personal, but it was also set in one of the most beautiful churches we have visited in the North East. Langley Castle gave us another grand and elegant building to host our reception and it had such good reviews from previous brides and grooms. The entrance to the castle was a main selling point.

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

We didn’t have a theme, we just wanted to create a day to remember.  Most people are at a loose end on New Year’s Eve so we wanted to celebrate the date in locations that people would remember for years to come.

We chose a colour scheme of black, red and ivory. Red was to tie in with the colours of the castle and blacks were to bring in a classic look to go with New Year’s Eve.

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

After nearly a year of hunting I finally found a dress that was different to anything I had seen.  I went for a fish tail style lace overlay dress designed by Justin Alexander and by one of his private labels so I knew it would be very unlikely that others would have seen this dress. As it is sold only in limited shops across the UK and can’t be viewed on his website, it gave me the exclusive look I had desired. I got my dress from Wild Brides At Heart in Durham City Centre.

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

My bridesmaids wore one shoulder Dessy dresses purchased from Isabelles Brides in Easington.  I wanted a classic look to go with the style of wedding and we wanted our maid of honour and best man to stand out so they wore claret red whilst the rest of the groomsmen and bridesmaids wore black. The men wore French Connection evening suits with dicky bow ties for a classic evening look.

Paul Santos Photography

My flowers were put together by Wild and Wonderful Flowers and consisted of deep red roses, black berries and ivory roses to blend in with the colour theme. 

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

I travelled in a Rolls Royce provided by Webbs Special Occasion Cars, and the guests were transported to on a 1900 Routemaster London bus from Henry Cooper Coaches, Northumberland. 

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

My favourite part of the day was our ceremony.  It was so meaningful and very touching.  To add an extra special touch, during the signing of the register we had a recently signed professional opera singer performing which made the ceremony so elegant.

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Our wedding cake was kindly made by Anthony’s auntie who makes cakes in her spare time.

Paul Santos Photography

We chose Gary James who performs swing and Michael Buble numbers for our entertainment.  Gary sang throughout the meal which was a great touch as it took away the clattering of knifes and forks and helped the meal run even more smoothly.  In the evening we had an acoustic singer called Alex Dobson who put his own spin on various new releases by bands and singers, before going into a traditional disco on the evening.

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Paul Santos Photography

Following the wedding we jetted off on honeymoon to Lucea, Jamaica. 

Paul Santos Photography

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be that before booking any suppliers do your research and never book based on price alone.  To ensure quality and value for money we sometimes had to bend our budget, but by doing this we got some of the best suppliers out there who had amazing reviews. Always read reviews before booking!

Paul Santos Photography

Congratulations Amy & Anthony!

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

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Paul Santos Photography

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

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Blushing Bride. A Real Wedding In The North West – Emma & Barry

December 17th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Arusha’s Images

This afternoon we join Brides Up North reader Emma and her new husband Barry for their vintage inspired Real Wedding in the North West.  Pretty and pink with lots of special little details, this is definitely one for the girly girls…

With images by Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Emma says:  We got engaged at Leeds Festival on August Bank Holiday Weekend 2011, and we were married on Friday 2nd August 2013 at St. Thomas’ Church, Thurnham, Lancaster. It is our local church beautiful, quaint and we fell in love with it as soon as we saw it.

Arusha’s Images

Our reception was at the Preston Marriott.  It has amazing grounds and a self contained room with a huge dance floor plus a quieter area to relax in. The staff were incredible and treated our wedding party like VIPs for the weekend.

Arusha’s Images

We based the day largely on a Vintage Romance theme. I love all things vintage.  I chose a colour scheme of cream, rose pink and silver grey.

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

I wore a strapless Justin Alexander gown from Butterfly Bridal, Lancaster. It had a very detailed bodice and a very full skirt, with gorgeous zip detailing to the back.

My bridesmaids wore full length Dessy dresses in Rose. They were one shoulder, Grecian style, again from Butterfly Bridal, Lancaster.  The men’s suits from Greenwoods, Lancaster. We opted for mid-grey morning suits, with silver waistcoats and pink cravats.

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

I carried a hand tied bouquet of vintage pink Sweet Avalanche Roses complimented with scented Lily of the Valley, Gypsophila, Cream Freesia and interspersed with chalky green Eucalyptus Cinnerea.  The stems were bound with ivory satin ribbon and secured with pearl pins.  Our flowers were by Abi’s Arrangements in Lancaster. 

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

The room was dressed by Renaissance Events, Dewhurst’s Balloons and Queen Of Hearts Vintage Crockery Hire.  We also hired a candy cart for our guests from Standen’s Special Occasions. 

We named our tables after all the bands at Leeds Festival from the weekend that we got engaged. 

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

Arusha’s Images

We chose a very simple ivory striped cake with four tiers in total. It was decorated with ivory flowers on top, each tier had a layer of pearls around it. We opted for two fruit and two sponge and buttercream tiers.

Arusha’s Images

My favourite part of the day was walking into the wedding breakfast room to a huge round of applause from all our friends and family. It took our breath away!

Arusha’s Images

For our honeymoon we sailed aboard the Thomson Majesty around the Adriatic for a week.

Arusha’s Images

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to sit back, relax and take it all in. It goes so quickly!

Congratulations Emma & Barry!

Fancy seeing your own Real Wedding on Brides Up North?  Here’s how

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Arusha’s Images

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Eye Candy: Justin Alexander 2014 Collection

August 21st, 2013 | Julia Braime

Justin Alexander 2014 Collection

Fancy a little wedding dress hunting of a Wednesday?  I thought so.

Today’s 2014 collection sneak peek comes from the king of the swinging 1950’s style skirt, the great Justin Alexander.  This season, the label has added an art deco influence to their classically beautiful gowns.  There’s sparkle, there’s beading and there’s lashings of lace, tulle and plenty of silk.   

Even better? This is a brand with a strong Northern presence.  All dresses featured are or soon will be available to try on and buy at Brides Up North Featured Supplier Mia Sposa Bridal & Menswear, Newcastle Upon Tyne.

continue reading

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Ice Cream Vintage: Justin Alexander For A Real Wedding In Wakefield – Molly & Joel

August 9th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Laura Calderwood Photography

Friday’s here at last, and it’s time to celebrate with this beautiful Real Wedding at Waterton Park, sent to me by Brides Up North Featured Supplier, the fabulous Laura Calderwood Photography

Molly & Joel’s big day was full of love, laughter, bloomin’ beautiful florals, dreamy romantic detailing… and a very, very fabulous pair of somethings blue.  Be inspired!

Laura Calderwood Photography

Laura Calderwood Photography

Laura Calderwood Photography

Laura Calderwood Photography

Molly says:  We got engaged by the River Thames in November 2011, and were married on 25th May 2013 at Waterton Park Hotel in Wakefield. 

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-5

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-6

For the venue, we wanted to be on the water and Waterton Park has a huge lake almost surrounding it and a gorgeous bridge over the lake.  The whole place and gardens were so beautiful.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-8

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-9

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-11

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-12

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-14

We chose to use all the ‘icecream’ colours, so together it looked very vintage. Creams, duck egg blue, light green, dusky pink and caramels and lots of lace.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-45

My gown was all lace with a sweetheart neckline, again very vintage and I wore it with a birdcage which went perfectly. It was by Justin Alexander and from Ava Rose Hamilton in Silsden, an amazing wedding dress shop. I wore light blue heels from Faith, again very vintage, it was my something blue!

I used Helen Claire for my make up, she was amazing, I loved it.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-48

For the flowers, we used a lady called Tanya Sumner, she was so reasonable and did a fabulous job, exactly what I wanted.  I carried a bouquet of sweet avalanche roses. 

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-46

My bridesmaids all wore different colours, the chief bridesmaid was in light green, then one in duck egg, one in dusky pink, one in caramel and my little girl in ivory like me. They were sweetheart neckline 1960’s dress with lace around the middle, made from scratch as I had an idea in my head and couldn’t find anything anywhere. We had two best men and eight ushers so we divided the colours of the bridesmaids and they had that colour cravat. The suits were hired from Moss Bros.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-16

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-18

We had up and coming star Lucy Zirins singing Eva Cassidy’s Songbird while I walked down the aisle, it was just beautiful.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-19

The ceremony was very emotional and beautiful after being together for 17 years!

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-20

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-21

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-22

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-24

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-36

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-34

My photographer Laura Calderwood was simply outstanding. She captured our day perfectly.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-37

For a good year I, my sister, my best friend and my mum collected cups and saucers, jugs, teapots from charity shops and these were all used for the centre pieces. In the reception room I scattered petals across the tables and the sashes on the chairs alternated from lace to ivory.

Along with the china ware that we collected, we also collected sweet jars and I did my own sweet shop.  I ordered the sweets online, along with the sweet bags and various other things and with the help of my sister it looked wonderful on the day and everyone loved it. 

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-30

For my chair covers and sashes which were beautiful I used Cushty Covers, Val the owner was the nicest woman I have ever met! 

I hired cake stands for the centre pieces which were filled with flowers from Add Vintage in Leeds,

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-26

We chose a four tier cake which was white with ivory iced henna on top so it was made to look like lace. A lady called Zarina Akhtar in Headingley made it, it was stunning and so delicious. 

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-25

For favours, we had cupcakes in ivory with edible pearls and lace cases by Louise Morgan.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-28

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-38

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-43

The speeches were brilliant.

For our evening entertainment a DJ was included in the price, we played lots of 80’s music and some 60’s too.  Our first dance was to Stand By Me. 

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-50

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-51

After the wedding, we honeymooned in Rivera Maya, Mexico. It was magical.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-55

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to enjoy every minute because it goes so fast.  I got given some brilliant advice before the day and I’m so grateful for it – don’t worry about going round and speaking to everyone, just enjoy it, people will come to you. And don’t stress, I was so relaxed in the morning and some couldn’t believe it but I wanted to enjoy the whole lead up to it wedding and I really did.

Waterton Park Hotel Wedding-56

 

Congratulations Molly & Joel!

 

If you’d like to share your own Real Wedding with Brides Up North, here’s how

 

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Laura Calderwood Photography

Laura Calderwood 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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Real Wedding Recap Summer 2013: Mellow Yellow! A Real Wedding In The North East – Steph & Dan

June 19th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the team take a break until to rest and recharge for the second half of what’s set to be the biggest and best year 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. 

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Usual service will recommence on 1st July 2013,  but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far in 2013, plenty of eye candy, new features that we won’t be able to wait to share, some special supplier showcases and a couple of surprises too!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I reckon a dash of sunshine is just what the doctor ordered.  First shared here on the blog back on a cold January’s morning, step forward Steph, Dan and their beautiful flower filled Summer wedding in the North East.  Let’s get mellow with the yellow.

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With images from Brides Up North Featured Supplier Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Steph says: We got engaged on 14th May 2011 in Newcastle – I had a long wait as we are childhood sweethearts who had been together for 11 years prior to our engagement!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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We were married on 11th August 2012 at Crook Hall and Gardens which is a hidden gem in Durham. We had the venue until 6pm, we then went to the Gala Theatre in Durham for our evening reception.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Right from the start we wanted an informal and rustic wedding so we went on the search for a barn conversion… despite having the Northumberland countryside on our doorstep there appeared to be a gap in the market for this up North as we couldn’t find one! A friend recommended Crook Hall and Gardens and as soon as we went there for afternoon tea we were sold! It’s a beautiful and unique venue with the most stunning collection of gardens and quirky decor. The medieval hall that we were married in was the perfect substitute to a barn ceremony. Crook Hall was so different to any wedding venue we had previously visited and we instantly fell in love with how beautiful it was.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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My mum and dad surprised me with a Beaumont vintage car to take me to the wedding. 

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Sean Elliott Photography

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It took me ages to choose a colour scheme – I didn’t want to choose a colour at first as I thought it would limit me in the hunt to find bridesmaid dresses! Eventually we found some navy bridesmaid dresses and then through my obsession of scrolling through Pinterest I found a picture of a girl in a navy dress and yellow shoes. From this point my colour theme was navy and yellow! The bridesmaids wore navy dresses and mustard shoes, we had yellow in our flowers and yellow balloons!

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As already stated, I have an obsession with lace therefore it was never an option to even consider not having a lace dress. The dress I chose was a Justin Alexander dress 8530. It is a beautiful lace mermaid gown with a bateau neckline. The dress comes with a veil but I purchased a separate lace edged cathedral veil from Joyce Jackson called Orlando that I fell in love with in the bridal shop – Mia Sposa Bridal & Menswear in Newcastle.

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The shoes were a beautiful vintage style lace up pair from Rainbow Club called Clara.

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My brother in-law’s sister played the harp as guests were coming into the wedding. She also played Canon in D as we walked back down the aisle after our ceremony and during our drinks reception following the ceremony.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I carried a vintage style hand tied bouquet including ivory rose, lisianthus, freesia, yellow dill, achilliea which was bound with lace.  My bridesmaids had simple hand tied gypsophila.  The groom and groomsmen wore buttonholes with an achilliea and beargrass loop.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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The bridesmaids wore beautiful but simple lace navy dresses from Monsoon and their yellow suede shoes were from ClarksThe groom and groomsmen wore navy suits hired from Waltons Menswear.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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My vision from the start was to provide a rustic / vintage theme. Anyone who knows me is aware I have an obsession with lace and so there was no doubt that lace would also play a huge part in my theme! We made lace chair ties, lace covered jam jars, put lace around the bouquets, the bridesmaid dresses were lace and obviously I had a lace dress!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I loved the idea of homemade décor and personalised touches that we could keep hold of for years to come. We spent time searching craft markets for decorative inspiration and spent months collecting jam jars and milk bottles that we could decorate with lace, twine and buttons. My sister made old fashioned luggage tags and stamped them with messages and my friends and I made homemade raspberry jam as name places and favours. For our table names we painted the glass of old fashioned photo frames with black board paint and wrote the table names in chalk paint. We also hung slates in the gardens with extracts from our readings on and used an old fashioned vintage suitcase for our cards and gifts.

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As we had the venue booked from 11.30 and our ceremony wasn’t until 12.30 we had lawn games for the guests to enjoy in the gardens as we wanted them to make the most of the venue and spend as much time there as possible.

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We had decorations hanging from the trees and this made for some beautiful pictures when we were cutting the cake.  We used Ladybird Cakes from Tynemouth and had a three tier cake made of carrot cake, raspberry and white chocolate, and lemon sponge.

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I absolutely loved the whole day and it genuinely exceeded all my expectations! However there are two parts of the day that stand out as my favourite. The first being when my friends and I are having fun in the gardens while trying to find our way through the maze with the balloons.  We used two yellow balloons to add an element of fun, a flash of colour and we also wanted it to express our informal theme of the day. It provided some excellent photo opportunities!  There is a great photo of my friends who surprisingly all agreed to lie down in the grass to capture an amazing photo of their legs poking above the flowers!

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My other favourite part was when Dan and I managed to have time with just the two of us in the gardens as the sun was setting – Sean has managed to capture the most amazing pictures we could have ever asked for! You spend most of your wedding day speaking to everyone else but each other so it was nice to have some time to savour the moment and enjoy our own company as Mr and Mrs!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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As part of our photography package we purchased the Photo Peg to entertain the evening guests. This was an excellent alternative to a photo booth! Polaroid pictures were taken of the guests holding a large vintage frame and they held up a chalk board with a message for us. The polaroid’s were then pegged on a ‘washing line’ and at the end of the night the guests could take the pictures home as a keepsake. 

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We used Colin Cook – The North East Wedding DJ who provided our evening entertainment and mood up-lighting and The Vintage Tea Company for hire of bunting, cake stands and crockery for our floral decorations in the evening venue.

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After the wedding we honeymooned in Thailand – we spent time in Bangkok, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is don’t feel pressure to conform to the norm! Our wedding may not have been the most traditional but we made it personal to us and we made sure that it was fun! Make sure you set time aside in the day to spend time with each other – you’ll be surprised how little you’ll see of each other!! Spend time searching for an amazing photographer… Sean has taken the most beautiful and unique pictures which has provided us with memories to last a lifetime!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Congratulations Steph & Dan!

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on the blog!  Here’s how to do it!

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  – Images © 2013 Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott 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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Love Is All You Need! A Flirty Frock For A Real Wedding At Liverpool’s Hard Day’s Night Hotel – Angela & Christopher

June 11th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Karen Julia

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It seems like the blog’s gone all musical all of a sudden!  Last week I featured a beautiful celebration (click here to catch up if you missed it) inspired by the music of Bob Dylan, and today we join Angela and Christopher in Liverpool for their big day with more than a hint of influence from the City’s fab four.

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With swishy skirts, a quirky and colourful venue and a seriously wow wedding cake this fun filled Real Wedding with images by Karen Julia certainly hits all the right notes.

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Ok.  Enough of the terrible musical puns, let’s take it away… a one, two, three…

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Karen Julia

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Karen Julia

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Angela says:  Chris asked me to marry him on Christmas day in 2011.  He wrapped up four gifts – something old (a vintage brooch) something new (a handbag) something borrowed (his favourite book) and something blue (Armani perfume), then got down on one knee with my beautiful ring!

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Karen Julia

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Karen Julia

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We tied the knot on 27th April 2013 at The Hard Day’s Night Hotel in Liverpool (the Beatles themed hotel).  We had stayed there on my 30th birthday and loved it, and wanted a quirky venue that our guests would remember. 

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Karen Julia

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We opted for a colour scheme of midnight blue and ivory as the venue is very colourful.  I chose a tea length Justin Alexander dress  and a birdcage headpiece from Cheshire Brides in Frodsham.  The service at the boutique was excellent and they really went above and beyond. 

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I carried a bouquet of ivory roses, freesias and carnations with diamante sparkle by Dovedale Florist in Mossley Hill, Liverpool. 

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My bridesmaids wore long midnight blue gowns by Ebony Rose and Chris and his groomsmen wore gorgeous dark blue suits from Groom in Warrington. 

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My favourite part of the day was walking into the “Two Of Us” suite for the ceremony and seeing Chris trying desperately not to cry. 

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Michelle Halewood Hair & Beauty did my make up and hair.  She was fabulous and made me feel really glamorous.

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We chose hand made favours in the shape of hearts with our guests’ names and the date of the wedding on them, from Alayna Ellis Ceramics.

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We chose a six tier “All You Need Is Love” wedding cake by Arty Cakes in Ruthin, North Wales.  We had lots of comments about our cake that included lots of details that were all very personal to us. 

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Karen Julia

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We set up a “diary room” in the evening with www.diaryroom.com for guests to leave us messages. 

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We chose Karen Julia as our photographer, she was amazing and we would recommend her highly. 

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In the evening our band, The Warning Tones, kept the dance floor full all night.  They even learned our first dance, which was “Gravity” by Embrace. 

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We still haven’t been on our honeymoon!  We are going to book something special once all the excitement has calmed down. 

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Karen Julia

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to do what you want to do!  Everyone will have their opinions but at the end of the day it’s your wedding!

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Karen Julia

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Congratulations Angela & Christopher!

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Fancy seeing your own big day on the wedding blog?  Here’s how.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Karen Julia

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Love & Laughter: A Tea Length Justin Alexander Gown For A Fun Filled Real Wedding At Rockliffe Hall – Rebecca & Philip

April 25th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We are in the North East this morning for an understated and elegant Real Wedding filled with pretty details, love and laughter.  Rebecca and Philip chose a stunning venue and used some excellent Brides Up North Featured Suppliers to make their big day super special. 

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Rebecca says:  Thank you for your blog! It became my bible in the run up to my wedding!  Not only was I able to source my photographer and entertainment through your directory but  many of my suppliers featured in your blog in the time leading up to my wedding which was always reassuring as your blog/you became my unofficial wedding planner. Thank you for the advice and the inspiration. I will still be checking in to get my fill of all things wedding.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Rebecca says: Phil and I were engaged in Newcastle the day after my 29th Birthday on January 8th 2010, after an 11 year “courtship”; we got together back in September 1999.

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Phil surprised me for my birthday with a magical mystery tour which saw us travel from our then home in Leeds to our home turf Newcastle for a weekend away. I was in the early stages of pregnancy and was in need of a rest before dinner and Phil said he would leave me in peace and go and do some shopping. At dinner I had asked Phil in jest if he had managed to find me a ring while he was out. His response was a yes and that if I wanted we could go and get it tomorrow! We went and purchased the ring and then went to meet our parents for lunch where Phil asked my Dad’s permission. I was presented with the ring at lunch in front of our parents who were all thrilled. I joke and say that Phil has never really asked me to marry him we just got engaged.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our wedding was on 21st July 2012. Two years after we got engaged; we had the small matter of having a baby to contend with first.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We were married at the gorgeous Rockliffe Hall Hotel, Hurwurth on Tees, Darlington. The ceremony was in the Old Hall Arches and the reception was in the Rockliffe Suite.

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Have you been to Rockliffe? If you have then I probably don’t need to tell you why we made the decision to get married there. Phil and I at the time of our engagement were both working in jobs that meant we travelled a lot staying in many hotels around the country and it was reaching the point where very few places we were staying for social occasions would make us stop and stay “wow”, but Rockliffe did. We stayed at Rockliffe for Phil’s birthday in the March after our engagement and asked to have a look around. It had everything we were looking for and more; a more traditional area for the ceremony; a large banqueting suite that would be appropriate for the large number of guests for the evening; fabulous bedrooms; a spa and for my parents a golf course. The staff during our stay were attentive and professional. The food was – in the words of my mother in law – “to die for “. Perfect!  We booked the wedding that weekend and I am looking forward to many anniversary meals.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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The theme for the wedding was understated and the focus was on fun, good food and music; a real party rather than a formal event. We wanted to treat our guests, which was made up primarily of our family, to fabulous surroundings and all that Rockliffe has to offer while feeling comfortable and not stuffy. We wanted the day to reflect us as a couple and what we enjoy doing together and good food has always been paramount in our relationship. From the canapés to the hog roast we made sure that our guests all had full tums.

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I had been to seven weddings the year before all beautiful in their own way but I was all “quirked out”, I wanted to keep things simple so the focus of the day became the entertainment.  I didn’t want to be to “matchy” with my colour theme and chose complementary tones of pale blue and pink. 

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My dress was a Justin Alexander tea length gown in style number 8555, I had never envisaged myself in a long gown and the dress helped set the tone of the day. I had seen a different Justin Alexander dress at a wedding fair and even paid a deposit before I had even tried it on. I went to try the dress on with bridesmaid and mum in tow and was asked by the shop to try on 8555 and quickly changed my mind, apparently my face changed when I put the dress on and the expressions on everyone else’s faces said that this was the one! I used a bridal shop in Shotton Colliery called Just Perfect and cannot praise the staff enough from allowing me to have a morning trying on as many dresses as I liked (even after I had made up my mind). From day one to picking the dress up they were fantastic! I wore Rainbow Club shoes called Coral and my hair I wore a hairband from Coast and a short veil.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My bridesmaid dresses were a similar length and gave a 1950’s feel to the day (Alfred Angelo Style 7188 from Wild Brides at Heart). My flower-girls wore shoes from Monsoon and a dress from BHS.

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My husband and I discussed outfits and we both decided that morning suits were a no go and so the groom wore a Reiss suit, while his groomsmen and the dads wore navy suits from Autograph Collection at M&S (the official suit of the England football team), and ties also M&S. The groomsmen were given the suits as a gift and it has been lovely when I have spied them wearing it again

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My hair was by Lesley and Rachel from Hooker and Young Darlington. I have always had short hair and had no intention of changing it for the big day by adding extensions (just not me) but I wanted it to look different. I wanted soft and feminine and Lesley delivered the goods! My make up was by Victoria Lees – Spa treatment manager at Rockliffe Hall. I have never been big on make-up and Victoria made sure that I felt comfortable.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Music throughout the day was a surprise for all of our guests. The string quartet and my chosen music for coming down the aisle was a surprise for Philip and set the tone for the day. I entered to “Dance of the Knights” by Prokofiev – this is the song that his team, Sunderland AFC, come out to on match days at the Stadium of light.  My favourite photo of Philip is one of him laughing as I am about to enter the music has started and the penny has dropped as to my choice. Walking down the aisle to laughter is not what every bride wants but it was the perfect way to start the party.

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Standing with Phil in front of our friends and family and our son Joe declaring to a silent room “That’s my Mammy and Daddy!” was a special moment and I am glad that Joe was part of our big day.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We followed the ceremony with reception drink entertainment from a West Yorkshire based singer songwriter we both fell in love with on a night in the Rodley Barge when we lived in Leeds; Roger Davies. We had a pianist during the wedding breakfast and the Blue House Band provided music for dancing the night away to. The music was aside from Roger Davies was supplied by the team at AMV Live Music, who went out of their way to make sure that the music was exactly what we wanted. Our first dance was to “Your Song” by Elton John sang by Andy Garner of AMV (whose version was better than the original). My dance with my dad was to Moondance by Van Morrison and I don’t think my dad has recovered from busting such a move.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our photographer was the fabulous Sean Elliott Photography! Sean is so personable it was just like having an extra friend to share our day. Sean also provided our “Picture Peg Project” at our evening reception.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Noble Fine Art supply stationery as part of the wedding package at Rockliffe (menus, name cards and table plan) and they also supplied my invitations and orders of service. The stationery was beautiful and they were a lovely team to work with.

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Simply Bows & Chair Covers dressed the room for the wedding breakfast. 

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our cake was supplied by my very talented Aunt, who only does cakes as a hobby, she did me proud.  It was a four tier cake in a mixture of sponge and fruit, covered in over a hundred individually handmade flowers. 

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our florist was Adam Prest. Adam was one of the nicest people I came into contact with during my wedding preparations. He is simply amazing. He worked his magic on our bouquets, button holes and on the table and pedestal arrangements. In an early meeting with Adam I had said that I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted but trusted him implicitly and he came up trumps.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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I have so many favourite parts of the day that it is hard to name just one but the spontaneous helicopter ride stands out! A guest of the hotel had flown his helicopter in for a game of golf so Phil and I asked if he would mind if we had a picture taken. He said he would to one better and would take us for a short flight.  It was totally unexpected and was the part of the day that Phil and I were together on our own (with the pilot).  Unfortunately and much to his disappointment we had lost Sean (our photographer) at this stage of the day and so we don’t have any professional photos.  There were stories of a man with a camera sprinting from one end of the hotel to the other to try and capture the moment once the rumour had spread. Poor Sean.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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The first dance spotlight shifting form me and Phil to my son and niece, both two, is still talked about as they took to the floor unexpectedly and camera shifted from the bride and groom to the far cuter pint sized couple.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We honeymooned in Mexico at the Dreams resort, Puerto Adventuras which was the perfect resort for our family honeymoon. We were lucky enough to travel business class and after the wedding it was time for a lie down.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My top tips for other Brides Up North would be not to stress about the small details as no one will notice but you.  Pick suppliers that you like you are going to be spending a year planning your wedding with these people and you wanted to be able to enjoy the preparations. 

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Congratulations Rebecca & Philip!

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Want 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 Sean Elliott Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

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