November 21st, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
For today’s real wedding, we’re escaping to beautiful Teesdale for Helen and John’s special day back in April, following their year-long engagement.
We could begin by talking about their enchanting venue, Lartington Hall, nestled in 75 acres of parkland, with its exquisite ballroom, chapel and gardens. We could even talk about the couple’s bold teal and purple colour scheme, with peacock feathers thrown into the mix. We might even share details of their scrumptious chocolate Guinness cake and the fact that the wedding also coincided with the groom’s birthday celebrations, making the occasion extra special.
But we just have to throw the spotlight on Helen’s stunning Vera Wang Odette dress – offering you lucky readers a glimpse into what we think is a true fairytale-inspired moment. This oh-so-pretty floor-length ball gown, named after the leading female character in Swan Lake, is utter perfection and a welcome reminder to all brides-to-be out there that it really is worth making a statement with your bridal look. Trust us, your wedding album will thank you later.
With images by Stan Seaton Photography.
helen says: Every year since we started dating we have gone to the Peak District in April for a long weekend, camping usually in fairly frosty weather, and 2016 was no exception. We had stopped on Eyam Moor to admire the view with not another soul in sight. Although beautiful, it was absolutely freezing, and I had already set off again when John called me back as he was ‘looking for his scarf’ in a bag, which concealed a Claddagh ring, which he had made with my birthstone as a proposal ring. He got down on one knee to ask the question and, of course, I said yes!
Our wedding date was a bit controversial. There was availability for the date exactly a year on from our engagement, but as it was John’s birthday the week after, he thought it would be a great idea to combine this with getting married on the same weekend! So, 29th April it was! It turned out perfectly as it meant John’s family and friends from Ireland could join us for a double celebration and a bank holiday Monday in the UK so everyone had some extra time recover.
I’m originally from the North East and it was my mum who had heard about our chosen venue, Lartington Hall, and all the work that owners John and Shona had put in to the restoration and developing such a beautiful venue and grounds. As soon as we walked into the Grand Corridor, we knew it was the venue for us.
Combining two special occasions and being able to celebrate in this private and stunning setting was a dream. We loved the freedom of being able to host different parts of our day across the rooms at Lartington; from the chapel ceremony, ballroom for our wedding breakfast and dancing the night away to rounding the night off (with whoever was left standing!) in the drawing room. We knew we were in safe hands with the team at Lartington, who ensured our wedding day ran seamlessly.
I have to credit my bridesmaid Jo for helping me when it came to our colour scheme! I’ve always loved bold colours, and John and I both like purple so that was our starting point, mixed with the organic natural forms of art nouveau, which I’ve always loved. That led us to peacock feathers so we added a teal to the purple along with silver accents. These ideas were carried through in the flowing lines of the sleepy S-shaped bouquets and the peacock feathers that featured in our stationery.
My mum is a fantastic seamstress and made her own wedding dress, as well as her sister’s wedding dress from scratch, but I didn’t want to put the mother-of-the bride under too much pressure leading up to the big day. And so, I eventually chose a Vera Wang dress called Odette, which was fitting as I have always loved ballet. My mum then hand-stitched embellishments to the front and back of the bodice. It was so much fun to wear!
October 16th, 2017 | Julia Braime
There is no finer way to begin your week than poring over this utterly divine real wedding that takes place at one of our very favourite Northern venues, the stunning Lartington Hall.
Bride and groom, Stephanie and Lee, equally fell for this utterly beautiful setting for their big day with wow-worthy interiors, gorgeous gardens and impressive entertaining spaces as standard.
Keen to complement rather than complicate, the couple decided to let the venue speak for itself and add simple décor using an elegant colour scheme of golds, creams and blush, with whimsical flowers and greenery to complete their classic vision.
Our heart is totally stolen by Stephanie’s pretty Pronovias gown, complete with cathedral-length veil and pointy Emmy shoes. Actual #stylinggoals!
stephanie says: We got engaged in New York on Christmas Eve 2015. I had no idea Lee was going to propose. We had always talked about getting married but always thought it would be in a few more years (even though we had already been together for eight years). We were just walking through Central Park on the morning of Christmas Eve and Lee asked me if I would like to marry him. There was no one else around and he had a little box hidden in his pocket with a note inside. He knows how particular I am so wanted to take me with him so we could choose a ring together. We then went to Tavern On The Green for lunch.
Our wedding date was May 13th 2017. At first, I was a bit dubious about choosing the 13th however we decided to ignore superstition and make 13 a lucky number for us. Plus, it meant all of our favourite suppliers were also available on that day as no one else wanted it!
We got married at Whitburn Parish Church and then went on to the beautiful Lartington Hall, Teesdale, for our reception.
From such a young age I always wanted to get married in my parish church so there was no doubt that the wedding ceremony was going to be there. As for the reception, we wanted a venue where none of our friends and family had been before. And me being me, wanted attention to detail and somewhere that had the wow factor.
We had heard of Lartington Hall but always thought it was a little bit too far (considering we were getting married in Whitburn) but after months of searching for the perfect place we decided to go and view it. We fell in love straight away!
We just wanted our wedding to be traditional, timeless and elegant and to reflect the beauty of Whitburn church and Lartington Hall. When choosing everything we pretty much did a full circle. We started off with very traditional ideas, moved to more rustic themes and then once the venue had been decided, we moved back to elegant and classic. I also wanted the flowers to be very whimsical and full of creams and greens.
For our stationery we chose Megan at Rosewood Co. We had seen Megan’s designs at a wedding fair so made an appointment so she could personalise something for us. Again, we went for very simple and elegant with a pearl ivory pocket fold wedding invitation tied with an ivory ribbon and name tag. The evening invitations had a hand drawn image of Lartington Hall on and the order of service had a hand drawn image of Whitburn Parish Church on. Our name place cards also had an image of Lartington Hall on and were finished with some dried flowers and ivory ribbon. Megan was extremely helpful and was in contact all of the time making sure it was exactly what we wanted. We again had some lovely comments from our guests about the stationery. It all turned out to be just what we wanted.
We went for very neutral colour scheme overall of golds, creams and blush. Again, we wanted the colours to be elegant and classic but also have a summery feel. I also thought about the colours that would suit my bridesmaids.
My wedding gown was a Pronovias design from Mia Sposa in Newcastle. Every time I looked at wedding dresses I searched ‘plain wedding dresses’ so knew I was going to go for something very simple and traditional. I also loved the Pronovias designs. My chosen dress was the first one I tried on. I did try a few other different styles on but knew that the first one was ‘the one’. I also feel that because it had a full skirt, it suited the grandeur of a church wedding.
With the dress being very simple, I decided to have a crystal and pearl vine hair piece in my hair and a single tier, chapel-length veil which was edged with lace, also from Mia Sposa.
I also wanted to treat myself to a special pair of shoes and knew that I always wanted pointy shoes rather than sandals or a peep toe. I saw a pair of Emmy shoes at a wedding fair and fell in love with them straight away.
For jewellery, I wore a pair of single pearl earrings that belonged to my nanna (something old) and a pearl bracelet to match.
It wasn’t too difficult for Lee to choose a suit either. He knew that he wanted to wear something a bit different as he ‘could wear a navy suit anytime,’ so he went for a tux. We hired his tux from Moss Bros. We also felt like this reflected the vintage/1920s feel of Lartington Hall. Many people said you don’t really wear tuxedos for church weddings but again we wanted to be a bit different so just went ahead with it. His shoes were from Kurt Geiger. The groomsmen wore the same as Lee.
The bridesmaid’s dresses were peach and were from Watters, which we bought from Laura Lea Boutique in Old Eldon Square, Newcastle. The girl there was so friendly and helpful and knew exactly what styles suited different body shapes.
The bridesmaids also wore matching heart shaped, crystal earrings and necklace from Swarovski – which we bought them as a gift.
Marie Scroggins at ND Makeup did our hair and makeup. Marie was so helpful and such a lovely girl to share the morning of the wedding with. I have known Marie a while and always knew I wanted her to do my wedding hair and makeup. She offered advice both at the trial and on the day but also listened to mine and the bridesmaid’s requests and ideas.
March 15th, 2017 | Julia Braime
The lovely wedding fairies at Lartington Hall have teamed up with Brides Up North to bring you a Spring Chic Luxury Wedding Fair at the heart-stoppingly beautiful exclusive use venue on Sunday 2nd April 2017, 11am till 3pm, and it’s FREE ENTRY.
Expect stunning styling, perfect interiors, all the details from fine art florals to bridal fashion, cakes, photographers, stationers, live music and more. The whole of the Hall, including it’s beautiful Chapel, bedroom suites and gardens will be open to explore and enjoy. If you haven’t found your venue yet (or even if you have and just fancy some serious wedding inspiration) then we would love to see you there. Register now!
Lartington Hall has quickly become one of the most sought after country house wedding destinations in the North of England. Having been lovingly restored, the Grade II listed building set amongst 78 acres of romantic parkland is now equally stunning on the outside as within; housing an opulent collection of ceremony and reception rooms, luxurious, boutique style accommodation and its very own private chapel.
The quality of the restoration and attention to detail is nothing short of spectacular; from reclaimed venetian marble floors and regency antiques, to Nina Campbell furnishings and state-of-the-art Bose sound systems, the old and new have been blended together seamlessly.
For weddings, the impressive country house, which combines the glamour of The Great Gatsby with the grandeur of Downton Abbey, becomes couples’ very own rural retreat for their special day, with exclusive use of the entire building for just them and their chosen guests. Helping to bring the perfect package together, a wedding specialist, stylist and, of course, a butler, will be on hand to assist brides and grooms with their every wish.
Find out more about the venue at www.lartingtonhall.co.uk.
bride to be?
To pre-register for a free Brides Up North VIP Bride-To-Be Media Pack (full of treats and glossy mags including the brand new issue of UNVEILED Magazine), simply follow the link below. You can collect your VIP Bride-To-Be Media Pack upon entry to Lartington Hall. Only the bride need register for larger groups. While stocks last.
fancy exhibiting with us?
We would love to welcome new exhibitors to the Brides Up North family in 2017. We are now accepting exhibitor bookings for all of our fabulous luxury wedding exhibitions across three regions this year.
Click here to view the schedule.
Exhibitors will be strictly limited by category and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.
Email Julia at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
December 29th, 2016 | Julia Braime
It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, 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 9th January 2017 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from 2016.
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.
Brace yourself for some incredible beauty and blooms, as today’s real wedding is among the prettiest that we have ever seen!
The elegant wedding of Stefanie and Jason took place at the incredibly stunning, exclusive-use venue that is Lartington Hall, a beautiful country manor in the Teesdale countryside. As you can see from Stefanie and Jason’s wedding, beautifully captured by photographer Helen Russell, this is a first class venue for a first class big day!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Helen Russell Photography.
stefanie says: We got engaged on 8th May 2015, which was exactly six years to the day since we met. Jason had booked a surprise trip away to New York, and I only found out where we were going once we arrived at the airport. It was such an emotional moment when I found out!
On the second afternoon there Jason had booked me a surprise massage in the hotel spa. When I returned to the room he was nowhere to be seen! He had left me a note saying I had to be ready for 7pm as a driver would be waiting for me at the hotel reception. The driver took me to a mystery location which turned out to be a private rooftop overlooking Manhattan. Jason was there waiting for me with a bouquet of red roses and his hand behind his back! He then got down on one knee! We celebrated with a bottle of champagne on the rooftop, before heading to a lovely little restaurant nestled underneath Brooklyn Bridge with a view of Manhattan, to continue the celebrations. It really was like fairy tale!
We got married on 8th October 2016. We chose this date as the venue we had fallen in love with – Lartington Hall – was fully booked up for every Saturday until this date!
Lartington Hall is a beautiful country manor in the Teesdale countryside. We got a good feeling as soon as we drove up to the venue, along the long gravel track through a field of curious sheep! We instantly fell in love when we saw how stunning all the rooms were, it certainly had the wow factor we were looking for. We also loved that the venue offered exclusive use of the hall and gardens for the weekend. Knowing it was just our friends and family there certainly gave it a more intimate feel.
We didn’t have a theme as such however we wanted to create a stylish and luxurious feel that tied in with the style of the venue.
The colour scheme was pale grey/blue with lots of whites/creams and a hint of blush. We also incorporated a lot of gold as Lartington Hall has lots of gold detailing throughout the venue. For example we added gold beaded charger plates from The Whole Sch-bang, to complement the gold chairs and the gold mirrors/candelabras in the dining room where we had our wedding breakfast.
My wedding dress was a Moroccan silk and lace fitted gown by Martina Liana from Ava Rose Hamilton, in Silsden. The top half of the dress was made from guipure lace, with illusion sleeves and an illusion back. There were buttons right the way down the back of the dress from the top to the bottom of the skirt. I visited a few wedding dress shops first but nowhere seemed to have the style of dress I was after. I then spent hours searching the internet trying to find this style of dress, but struggled to find one that had all the aspects I envisioned! When I finally came across this Martina Liana gown, it was the only dress I got shivers over, I knew it was the one before I even tried it on! Ava Rose Hamilton ordered a sample dress into store for me to try and it was everything I imagined. Terri (the seamstress) did an incredible job at making sure the dress fitted perfectly – it fitted like a glove!
On the morning of the wedding, Lisa Cameron did the hair for the bridal party and Heather-Francesca did our makeup. We would highly recommend both, they were brilliant to have around on the morning and a calming presence as I was extremely nervous the whole morning.
Jason and his groomsmen wore navy blue suits from Marks & Spencer. Jason originally wanted to go for a designer suit, however with five groomsmen it was getting rather pricey! In the end we came across a really good quality suit in M&S. Jason also wore a Thomas Pink shirt, a navy spotted tie and a grey waistcoat. He completed his look with Ted Baker shoes, Mulberry cufflinks and a Mulberry tie clip.
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July 11th, 2016 | Julia Braime
If you’re currently in the early stages of wedding planning, sit up and take note, as this afternoon we’re introducing another of our Brides Up North Dream Venues.
Set within 75 acres of peaceful parkland in Teesdale, Lartington Hall is a venue that is equally stunning on the outside as it is within.
Having visited the venue ourselves on several occasions we can tell you first hand that this place is super special. From its luxurious reception rooms to its boutique bedrooms, everything about Lartington says elegance and class.
As an exclusive use venue, brides need not worry about sharing their moment in the limelight with others, and they won’t have to lift a finger during their stay either, with guests are assigned their own house butler.
Intrigued? You should be. To tell us more about Lartington’s impressive wedding offering we’re going to hand over the blogging reins to owner Shona Harper-Wilkes this afternoon – and if you like what you hear, be sure to join us at our Luxury Wedding Exhibition at Lartington Hall on Sunday 6th November to view this outstanding venue for yourselves!
Images by Lee Scullion.
Where is Lartington Hall located?
shona says: The Hall is situated two miles from Barnard Castle, a vibrant market town with gorgeous shops in Teesdale.
Tell Brides Up North a little about the history of Lartington Hall and what the venue is like today…
Lartington Hall has a rich history dating from 1635 when the first Hall was a small Manor House. Over the years Lartington Hall changed hands and grew in size as it was developed, though it always remained a hub of activity and a welcoming place – home to families, maids, chauffeurs, gardeners and grounds men, butlers, priests, cooks and many more up until it fell into serious disrepair in the mid-1970s. It was nearly demolished, but since served as a squash and racquet club before the major restoration that my husband and I undertook to reinstate it as a beautiful country home.
Today Lartington Hall is a uniquely beautiful wedding venue, impossibly glamorous and perfectly tasteful.
With our gorgeous Grand Ballroom, private Chapel, and many sumptuous reception rooms, we can give our couples so much freedom to plan their special day – they can choose where they marry, where they eat, where they relax and of course where they party! Despite the grandeur and size of the Hall, it really has been designed to feel like home from home – nobody ever wants to leave! Our style is authentic, tasteful and welcoming, having chosen everything of the best quality means our couples feel completely spoilt during their stay – cosseted by designer silks, one off pieces and luxury brands.
What facilities does it have?
We have amazing reception rooms, flooded by light which together with hand painted ceilings and the best designer furnishings, makes Lartington the perfect place to relax, be pampered and of course, tie the knot! Our licensed spaces include our Chapel, Grand Ballroom and Grand Corridor.
We have a BOSE music system zoned in each of the ground floor rooms so different music plays in different rooms/areas, including the loos, from your play lists.
Upstairs there are 12 double ensuite bathrooms which are each individually styled and include antique shabby chic hand painted ceilings, freestanding baths, Mulberry wallpapers and the most amazing views.
Set amongst 75 acres of romantic rolling parkland, Lartington boasts the most beautifully landscaped gardens for guests to take a stroll, throw a penny in the fountain or just admire the view. We can also conduct licensed ceremonies outside in the gorgeous gardens.
Best of all, Lartington is completely private and exclusive – no sharing other than with invited guests! It’s your very own stately for the weekend with a house butler included for the duration of the guest’s stay (really)!
Tell us about the spaces available for weddings at Lartington Hall…
The Hall has an exceptionally large and beautiful ground floor space, which means you have lots of choice and flexible options for your ceremony, dining, dancing, relaxing and milling time! Downstairs comprises of:
Private Chapel – This amazing space is licensed and can cater for civil ceremonies of up to 140 people.
The Grand Ballroom – another licensed space catering for civil ceremonies and formal dining of up to150 people and evening receptions of up to 220 people.
The Grand Corridor and Bar – Tastefully restored with gold gilt paint to the plaster work above and reclaimed venetian marble floor this area is contemporary Victorian grandeur at its best! Civil ceremonies for up to 40 people can be held here.
Large Dining Room – Gorgeous embroidered silks from Colefax and Fowler adorn the seven Georgian windows overlooking the beautiful gardens in this room. Civil Ceremony for up to140 people and formal dining for up to100 people can be held in this area.
Drawing Room – As well as a gorgeous place to relax and watch TV or sit by the fire, surrounded by sumptuous Nina Campbell fabrics, this is also a room available for ceremonies of up to 50 people.
Georgian Hall – Connecting the drawing room and dining room and leading to the stone terrace and east lawns and Park, the Georgian Hall – still with it original 18 Century stone floor, is another room licensed for modest ceremonies of up to 40 people.
Staircase – With beautiful pre-Raphaelite stained glass window and 19 Century sky lights, the impressive stone cantilever stair case is not only the place to make a striking entrance and take unforgettable photos, but it’s also licensed for small ceremonies of up to 30 people.
Reception Rooms 4 and 5, Jacobean wing – More rooms! To make your stay even more comfortable, in our 17 Century wing leading to the South door and lawns, we have a gorgeous lounge snug (again with open fire and club furniture) and a snooker room.
As of May 2016, civil ceremonies can also be held in the stunning gardens that surround Lartington Hall.
July 1st, 2016 | Julia Braime
It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, 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 4th July 2016 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some 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.
Before we start today’s post we must warn that it may cause serve weakness of the knees.
Florence and Stephen’s wedding takes place at what we believe is one of the most stunning wedding venues in the North, not only that, but it was held during one of our favourite months of the year, and it features our top hues of pale pink and elegant gold.
As a real family occasion with the bride and groom’s children fully involved, this is a wedding day that really is beautiful through and through.
We could seriously swoon over this one all day, but instead of rabbiting on we’ll let you see the pretty for yourselves – just make sure you’re sitting down first!
With images by Nicola Helen Photography.
florence says: We got engaged in 2012 at Matfen Hall Hotel in Northumberland. We had been together a few years and I was expecting our son, Hugo. I was quite pregnant by this point and feeling tired. Stephen surprised me with a night away so we headed to Matfen and just spent the afternoon relaxing. He had booked the most expensive room in the hotel and I still had no idea. Just before we headed down to supper, he proposed in the window, overlooking the beautiful grounds. It was all quite relaxed. We ate in the Library Dining Room quite quietly excited to know we were finally going to get married!
Our wedding was on 31st October 2015, yes, Halloween! It most certainly was not a themed wedding, though there was a nod to the day with pumpkins scattered here and there. October is my favourite month and it was the last Saturday the venue had available – so we just went with it and now quite enjoy the looks on people’s faces when we tell them the date.
We initially wanted a venue that was very quiet and intimate, our local village hall perhaps. But we had fallen in love with a property in Lartington and knowing that we would be spending the rest of our lives there, we thought it would be wonderful to be able to tell the children that we were married locally.
Once we viewed Lartington Hall in Teesdale, we knew it was something special. My family are from Barnard Castle and my parents had stories about the Hall from years gone by. It just felt right. Once the hall was booked, things grew from there.
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