Welcome to a new week folks! After a rare weekend off here at Brides Up North HQ – topped off by an X Factor and Downton Abbey marathon (hell yeah!) - I’m back and bursting to get going.
I’ve so much wedding pretty to share with you between now and our Bridal Bonanza Grand Wedding Exhibition at Hardwick Hall Hotel this weekend that I’m going to jump right in. We’re in the North East this morning, as we share in Claire and Chris’ utterly elegant celebration at the ever stunning Rockliffe Hall. Timeless, traditional and totally gorgeous.
With images by Brides Up North Featured Supplier, Jamie Penfold Photography.
Claire says: We got engaged on Christmas morning 2011 – Chris surprised me with a ring as we opened Christmas presents in front of the tree. We had already been together over ten years but I still wasn’t expecting it!
We were married on 2nd August 2013 at St Aloysius Church, Hebburn followed by a reception at Rockliffe Hall Hotel.
It was the first place we visited as we had heard very good things about it, and we were blown away by the gorgeous venue! The staff were so helpful and friendly from our first meeting, and they couldn’t do enough for us from start to finish. We viewed a few other places after that, but we couldn’t get Rockliffe out of our heads, nowhere else compared for us! Becci and Colin made sure everything ran smoothly and we felt like we were in safe hands. The toastmaster, Robert Leeming was completely charming and really made the day extra special.
We didn’t have a theme; we just wanted the wedding to be quite traditional and classic, with a colour scheme of pale pinks and greys.
I chose a strapless fishtail dress embellished with crystals from I Do in Bill Quay. I also got my jewellery, hair band and veil from there. My bridesmaids Ashleigh and Samantha wore short pink Dessy dresses, also from I Do.
Our bouquets included pink roses, white freesias, white veronica and eucalyptus, made by Cinnamon Rose. They also supplied the centrepieces of candelabras and roses.
We travelled in a Bentley S2 from Fearon’s, we loved the classic shape and colour of the car.
Our videographer Steve Spowart from Gibside Video Service was brilliant.
Jamie Penfold was our photographer and he was fab. We couldn’t be happier with the photos from the day!
The invitations, orders of service and other stationery were designed by Noble Fine Art. Julia and Charlotte did a fantastic job and were so organised, which took a lot of stress out of it for me!
Gemma of Love Lily Cakes made our four tier cake, and it was delicious! We chose a bottom tier of carrot cake, followed by vanilla sponge, chocolate and fruit cake. She handcrafted flowers to imitate those in my bouquet and she did an amazing job.
Chris’ cousin Caroline made a slideshow of photos of us both, as babies, through our teenage years up to the present day. It was shown just before our first dance and it was a lovely surprise for us, however there were some extremely questionable photos included!
We went to Dance City and had a few lessons with a dance teacher, Sue, who choreographed a first dance routine for us. Although it didn’t go quite as planned on the night, as we didn’t have time to practise in the lead-up to the wedding, we had such a lot of fun doing it and our guests seemed to enjoy us looking silly too!
For our honeymoon we spent two weeks in El Dorado Casitas in Mexico and it was fabulous – we didn’t want to come home!
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to take it easy on the morning of the wedding. I’m so glad I got Elaine and Amy to come to my house. There was a really chilled atmosphere as there was no rushing around and we could just relax and be pampered in our PJs!
Congratulations Claire & Chris!