Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

autumn amour. maggie sottero for a chic urban wedding in leeds – rachel & robin

December 2nd, 2016 | Laura McDonagh

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Today’s chic city real wedding simply exudes elegance. There’s a stunning Maggie Sottero dress, a gorgeous autumnal colour palette and an organic, woodland theme.

There was also plenty of personality to this stylish wedding too, with nods to the groom’s love of owls, Cockney rhyming slang table names and a real ale special brew called ‘Old Legover’!

With images by Olivia Brabbs Photography

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rachel says: Robin’s proposal centred around an owl theme. He has a particular passion for owls – since he was a child he collected all things owl. It has turned into a running joke that owls are literally taking over our house, so it was no surprise that they featured quite heavily in Robin’s proposal. Robin went to great lengths to set out an owl-themed treasure hunt, which went on for a few weeks (!) and, led by a number of clues, I found Robin under the ‘Owl of Justice’ – a carved owl that can be found at the back of the Civic Hall in Leeds, where Robin proposed and we later got married.

Our wedding date was the 9th September 2016. We both love autumn and wanted a natural earthy wedding. The weather also always seems to be lovely in Leeds in September, so we were lucky to secure the date when we did.

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We got married in the Banqueting Hall in the Civic Hall in Leeds city centre. We chose the venue for obvious reasons (hello gold owls!) but we were both so stunned at how beautiful the hall is once you get inside. We even decided to have a drinks reception after the ceremony to make the most of our time there. We really wanted to have our reception somewhere close to where we got married and settled on the Devonshire Hall in Headingley, to have our party; an amazingly grand hall of residence, which forms part of the University of Leeds. We loved the blank canvas of the dining hall and the design of the building is so lovely with the cloisters and outside space. We both got a great feel from the place when we visited so it was an easy decision.

In terms of theme, we’re big lovers of the great outdoors and our vision was for a woodland/autumnal/natural style of wedding. If we’d been brave enough (and my mum had allowed us!) we’d have had our reception in the woods, so this was a good compromise.

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Our colour scheme was navy and gold and, fitting with the autumnal theme, the groomsmen wore navy suits with a variety of dark gold and burnt orange accessories. My sister is a personal stylist so she helped choose the bridesmaid dresses, and navy is a gorgeous universal colour that looks great on everyone. I’m also a big fan of a bit of sparkle so gold shoes were a must!

If I’m honest, I wasn’t entirely looking forward to the wedding dress shopping – I had no idea what I wanted and felt a bit nervous about it all. When I walked into the first bridal shop (the wonderful Bridal Boutique in Baildon) I knew that the first dress that I saw would be the one I’d wear. I tried on all sorts of different styles anyway – and was surprised by how much I loved the huge princess dresses! But I settled for the first dress: Vidonia by Maggie Sottero. Such gorgeous detailing and I felt so comfortable in it, I knew it had to be the one. I cancelled my next booking!

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Robin and the groomsmen wore three-piece navy Ted Baker suits, which we hired from Moss Bros. We got the bowties and ties, made from knitted English silk, from the website Swagger & Swoon.

The bridesmaids wore A-line navy dresses from Coast and they each chose their own gold shoes. As a thank you for being my best women, I got them all engraved bangles made by the fab Libby Jubb Jewellery. They had a little birdy charm on them which matched the turtle doves I wore in my hair. Hannah De Ath and Annabel Bailey also did a fantastic job with hair and make-up and made my mum, bridesmaids and me feel like a million dollars.

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lilac & lilies. a super stylish wedding at the leeds club – rachel & tom

October 28th, 2016 | Julia Braime

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When we first set eyes on today’s real wedding we were totally blown away by the bride’s cool and individual style, perfectly showcasing how to make your big day attire your own.

Wearing an insanely beautiful lilac, bias-cut silk dress, Rachel exudes Hollywood glamour by the bucket load, completing her look with a sparking birdcage veil headpiece and shower style bouquet. We love!

As the couple’s stylish choice of venue didn’t have a marriage license, Rachel and Tom made things legal with a ceremony at Leeds Town Hall a few days previous, and yes, they looked flippin’ gorgeous for that bit too!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Mark Newton Photography.

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rachel says: We got engaged on 29th February 2012, at the Bier Keller in Leeds. We’d randomly gone there for a drink after. After a discussion about wedding and such things, I decided to ask Tom to marry me, we had been together for five years after all. He said yes and we both got quite emotional. I was lucky enough to inherit my grandmother’s engagement ring so we didn’t have to buy one.

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We had our legal ceremony at Leeds Town Hall on 18th May 2015, as unfortunately the venue we wanted to have our wedding at didn’t have a licence to marry us there. We then had a blessing at The Leeds Club on 29th May, as part of our wedding celebrations. I always remember walking past the venue as a child and seeing the business men in the wing back chairs and being really fascinated as to what was inside.

We chose lilac and sage green for the wedding scheme, as we wanted colours that would complement the venue and that also matched my dress.

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I was lucky enough to have two wedding dresses as we had the two ceremonies. For the town hall I wore head to toe Vivienne Westwood. For the blessing, I was fortunate enough to have a bespoke dress from the amazing Glory Days, in York. My dress was based on 1940’s Hollywood glamour and the dresses worn by Joan Crawford. It was lilac bias cut silk, with an open back and fishtail train. It was the best dress ever.

Tom wore a suit from River Island for the town hall and then a three-piece 60’s style, royal blue suit from Topman for the blessing.

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Both my bridesmaids have very different styles, so I asked them to wear their favourite dresses. Jules made her own 1940’s style cocktail dress and Suzanne wore a floor-length maxi dress from Seraphina.

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gorgeous grandeur. pops of copper for a wedding at left bank leeds – courtney & vicky

September 1st, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (25)

There are several elements to today’s real wedding that evoke the word “wow”.

The fabulously planned surprise proposal for one (excellent work Courtney), not to mention the a-maz-ing reception venue, and then the fact that the couple managed to get one of their favourite bands to travel all the way from California to play at their wedding. Impressed? Us too!

Now let’s start by hearing that proposal story…

With images by Yolande De Vries Photography.

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (52)

courtney says: I proposed to Vicky at Cottage Road Cinema in Leeds on 4th May 2014. Cottage Rd Cinema was one of the places we went to on our first dates and is only a two minute walk from our house.

On the day of the proposal Vicky had planned to meet a group of friends in Headingley for lunch and a few drinks as a belated birthday celebration. I had suggested the two of us go to a student short film festival at Cottage Road Cinema before lunch and told her I had pre booked tickets. When we got to the cinema we were given a glass of prosecco each (we were told it was complimentary with ticket as part of the student film festival). When we got in the previews were already on and we stumbled to a few seats in the back.

When the first “short film” came on it was set to the song Skinnybones by Sea of Bees, which always reminds us of when we first got together. So instantly Vicky knew I was up to something but had no idea it was more than just a film. Part way through the very short film (it was probably only about 20 seconds of footage) text appeared that said, Victoria Hayhurst I adore you. Let’s be together forever? I then pulled out the ring I had designed as a cork popped from a bottle of bubbly, the lights went up and all our friends jumped up and yelled surprise! Vicky burst into tears, when she saw everyone and then again when she saw the ring and realised what was going on. We all had more prosecco, chatted and then walked to the restaurant we were all booked into for lunch and had a lovely day.

Exactly a year later Vicky surprised me on a walk through the woods by giving me my engagement ring at a spot that means a lot to us.

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (68)

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (77)

We got married on 27th June 2015, at Leeds Town Hall because I love the building and Leeds is where we met. The reception was held at Left Bank Leeds which is an amazing Grade II* listed former church building near to where Vicky lived as a student and where I rented when I first moved to Leeds. Before we found the venue I had wanted a grand but dilapidated building, with prosecco and exquisite canapés being served and a jazz band playing. Left Bank Leeds wasn’t dilapidated but still had the sense of grandeur I desired.

Our colour scheme was black, white, grey and navy with accents of copper. I chose these because they’re my favourite colours (I don’t really do colour!). I didn’t set a dress code but asked that everyone wore black, white, grey or navy. Everyone looks good in those colours and copper was a colour of the moment and added a bit of contrast for an extra pop.

A Wedding at Left Bank Leeds (c) Yolande De Vries (100)

In terms of my wedding attire, I made my own skirt and drafted the pattern myself. It was a full length, high waited skirt with wide waste band, concealed back zip and side pockets (for my phone) in a French navy silk from Joel & Son Fabrics in London. I chose the fabric with my best friends Vicky, Franny and Alexa. I wore the skirt with a customised white sleeveless top that I bought at Cos when I was in Berlin with Franny and Alexa.

Vicky wore French navy wide legged trousers from Crombie and a white asymmetrical sleeveless top by Vivienne Westwood.

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our love story: sarah & dave

May 24th, 2016 | Julia Braime

A City Engagement in Leeds (c) Jenny Maden Photography (16)

Sometimes things are just meant to be – and judging by how today’s couple got together we’d say it was written in the stars for these two.

Taking place in the urban surroundings of Leeds city centre, husband and wife-to-be Dave and Sarah, wanted their pre-wedding shoot, which they are sharing with us today, to be cool, edgy and fun. Given all the giggles, smiles and laughter, it looks like their photographer Jenny, nailed the brief.

With images by Jenny Maden Photography.

A City Engagement in Leeds (c) Jenny Maden Photography (12)

sarah says: Dave proposed while we were in Ibiza at a beautiful restaurant called Sa Capella, which we return to each year! It was a complete surprise to me, and very emotional, as I’d always said after losing my dad I couldn’t do it without him walking me down the aisle.

We plan to marry on my dad’s birthday this year at Leeds Town Hall and will then move onto The Liquorist for the reception. We don’t want lots of fuss – just a cool event to round together everyone we love and who has had a positive impact on our time together.

A City Engagement in Leeds (c) Jenny Maden Photography (11)

We first met 16 years ago in a club that neither of us have ever been back to! I was with the girls, hitting the dancefloor – and that’s where I met Dave. We laughed and chatted most of the night – my first words to him were “Ooo you’re a mover”! We never kissed or exchanged numbers. However, after that night he had a work placement in Leeds (the only time he’s ever worked in Leeds city centre) and he walked past Toni & Guy where I worked at the time, hoping to catch me. He saw me through the window, laughing with a client and sent me a calla lily with a note asking to see me again.

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Cross Keys & Polka Dots: A Real Wedding In Leeds – Laura & Mathew

October 30th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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We are right back on home turf this morning with a vintage inspired celebration in the centre of Leeds.  In a past life I used to work near the city’s Town Hall and used to love to see newlyweds celebrating on it’s huge stone staircase from my office window.

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Today’s lovely Real Wedding, with images from Jane at JB Creatives, is all about celebrating love with your nearest and dearest – a close knit celebration with your best people.  Oh, and some good pub grub. 

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With some pretty finishing touches and a nod to bygone eras, this small (yet perfectly formed) city wedding is just the thing to lift the spirits on a Tuesday morning. 

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Laura says:  We got engaged on Christmas Eve 2010 in our house. Mathew cooked us a lovely meal and then got down on one knee and produced a lovely engagement ring!

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He had asked my parents for my hand in marriage the day before so when we arrived round at their house to start our Christmas celebrations, they were ready with champagne and balloons.

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We made it official on 25th August 2012 at Leeds Town Hall. We wanted a small wedding so it was just close family. Following the ceremony, we had a meal at The Cross Keys on Water Lane in Leeds.  The following Saturday we had our wedding reception at The Cruck Barn, The Craven Arms in Appletreewick. 

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We wanted to get married locally and Leeds Town Hall is such an impressive building. The Cross Keys does fabulous food and the staff are lovely.Appletreewick has lots of childhood memories because I used to go camping at Mason’s campsite down the road from the pub.

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We travelled in style on the day in a cream vintage bus from the Yorkshire Heritage Bus Company.

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My dress was by Cymbeline and I got it second hand from The Wedding Mill in Saltaire. I realised quite quickly into my wedding planning that I didn’t like a lot of wedding dresses; I don’t like satin, ruching or strapless dresses. The dress I chose didn’t look very inspiring on the hanger but when I tried it on I knew it was ‘The One’ because it fitted so well and felt so nice to wear. I wanted a dress that I could walk and dance in confidently, and that dress enabled me to do both comfortably!

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I also had a lovely garter made by Nicola Wellard from the gorgeous Silver Sixpence In Her Shoe. 

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My bridesmaids wore dresses by Geri from Next and Mathew and his Dad wore suits by Chester Barrie.

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Many, many thanks to Jane at JB Creatives for the fabulous photographs of our wedding.   She has such a good eye for capturing a perfect shot. Mat and I particularly like all the natural photos of our guests at our reception. It was so nice to see the experience other people had on our day.  She is a joy to work with and is so friendly, professional and hardworking. I am desperately trying to think of the next big event we can have so we can get her back to photograph it!

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I had a theme of vintage of tea party. I collected teapots from charity shops and filled them with flowers for the table centres. We also used a selection of my late Grandma’s teacups as candle holders for the tables. I didn’t have a strict colour scheme but did incorporate quite a lot of pink!

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I made a lot of the things for myself but I did have a beautiful memory book, ‘I Do’ & ‘Love Is Sweet’ flags which we had in incorporated into to our table centres; and sweetie jar labels made by Vintage Twee. 

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Lots of family and friends contributed towards our wedding and as part of their Thank You gifts, I had rosettes made for them which stated their role. For example, my best friend Leanne did my hair and her rosette said ‘The Bouffant Boss’. The rosettes were from Vintage Twee. 

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We had a lot of help from our family.  My brother, Howard and his girlfriend, Helen performed for us. Howard plays the guitar and Helen sings. We also had a Ceilidh organised by the brilliant Aluinn Ceilidh Band.  Mathew’s cousin’s wife made our cake for our wedding day. She decorated the cake with a piece of my late Grandma’s lace. My friend Emily made a chocolate and Guinness cake version of the Cruck Barn for our party.

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The speeches were wonderful, and when my Dad said that I had walked back down the aisle as Mrs Johnson, it filled me with happiness and made it all seem real rather than just a dream!

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Mathew and I stayed at 42 The Calls on the wedding night and we sat wrapped in our fluffy dressing gowns reading our wedding cards and memory book. It was lovely and very moving to read our all the kind words from our families. We felt very, very lucky.

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After the wedding we honeymooned in Rio De Janeiro!

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to film your day especially the speeches. I loved watching back our wedding video and the more amateur the better!  In addition, don’t go on honeymoon straight after the wedding. All I wanted to do after my wedding was talk to people about their experiences of the day and read my cards and memory book!

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Congratulations Laura & Mathew!

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Get in touch to see your Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North, I would love to hear from you!

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  – Images © 2012 JB Creatives 

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Sustainable Style – A Real Wedding, Gillian & David

December 8th, 2010 | Julia Braime

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Don’t say I never spoil you.  Have I got an amazing Real Wedding to share with you this morning!   

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This couple are truly inspiring.  They show that you can have your dream Real Wedding without making a huge impact on the environment.  Hats off to them!  This is one beautiful eco friendly affair, bursting with personality.   

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Could you go green?   

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Gillian shows us how its done: Being environmentally minded is important to both of us in the way we live our life so naturally we wanted our wedding to be as sustainable as possible. We wanted a high quality wedding celebration that would be as environmentally sensitive as possible without affecting the style and substance of the day.    

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The venue was the first thing we found. The Craven Arms is a beautiful real ale gastro-pub in the Yorkshire Dales with the most amazing barn tucked away behind it. The food and drink is all delicious as well as being local and seasonal and the Dales setting is spectacular, especially if you are as fortunate as we were with the weather! Mark and the team were a joy to work with throughout, making our guests feel absolutely welcome at all times.    

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Our next fantastic find was from a recommendation from our friend Nicola. Photographer Olivia Brabbs specialises in eco-weddings – using recycled materials where ever possible, sourcing sustainably produced albums from the UK and even running her office on renewable energy. Olivia’s photos were perfect for our wedding as we wanted relaxed shots rather than spending lots of time posing. Many guests commented that they didn’t even notice she was there which was wonderful.   

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Olivia recommended a florist who also specialises in eco-weddings. Joanna, at Twisted Willow, took our sustainable brief and David’s enthusiasm for cactii and other succulents and created some of the most unique and spectacular bouquets, buttonholes and decorations we have ever seen. They were a real talking point all day and the nice thing for us was that most of the flowers and plants were locally sourced and grown. Plants were taken from David’s parents’ garden and even from the walls around The Craven Arms. The table decorations used plants rather than cut flowers so they could be given as gifts to family and friends after the wedding.   

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There were lots of other little things that we ensured were “green”. All the invitations and orders of service were printed on recycled card, we hired a coach for guests to reduce the number of people driving cars, we sponsored a woodland for our guests to visit through The Woodland Trust instead of table favours and the DJ even used low energy lights.   

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We had the most amazing day and never felt that sustainability meant we had compromised on style. It may have occasionally taken a little longer to source things but it was amazing how, once we found one supplier, they were able to recommend so many others doing similar.   

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Overall we would say that you can have a fabulous, fun and classy wedding and not make a huge impact on the environment.   

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Little Black Book: 

 

 
 
 
 

Photographer – Olivia Brabbs

Flowers – Joanna, Twisted Willow

Ceremony venue – Leeds Town Hall

Reception venue – Craven Cruck Barn, Appletreewick.

Favours – The Woodland Trust

Stationery – Ruth Child at Olive Wedding Stationery

All paper for the order of days, place cards etc – Eco Craft

Brides dress – Essence of Australia design, supplied by Ava Rose Hamilton, Silsden

Bridesmaids – Alfred Sung design, supplied by Angel Brides, Horsforth

Suits – hired from Moss Bros

Make up – Beauty by Julie

Hair – Mandy Spence

Engagement ring and bracelet – Mirri Damer supplied by Element Jewellers in Hebden Bridge

Wedding rings – made by David’s father Peter Hemming

Wedding car – Diamond Class

Bridesmaids car – JWS

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Contact Brides Up North today to submit your Real Wedding!   

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This is not a sponsored post.   

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

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