Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

the italian lakes. a colourful wedding in windermere – julia & alex

September 28th, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (37)

A little later than planned (we’ve been in recovery from another very busy weekend of wonderful wedding inspiration!), but worth waiting for, we bring you the super gorgeous wedding of Brides Up North reader Julia and her brand new husband Alex.  Inspired by the colours and tones of their one time Italian home, this beautiful, colourful wedding is an absolute feast for the senses.

Prepare for a Pinterest frenzy.

With beautiful images by Brides Up North Sponsor, James Tracey Photography.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (8)

julia says: We were living in Italy at the time we got engaged. Disguising a trip home as ‘lads university reunion’ Alex assembled the ‘Ring Squad’ – made up of his parents, brother and very lovely cousin to help choose a ring for me. The jewellers were Michael Levin of Nottingham who specialise in antique pieces, which I’d long before fallen for on a shopping trip to the city.

Living in Milan at the time, Alex had planned a trip down to Rome for my birthday – unbeknownst to me he was ducking into the toilet on the train trying to call my dad at every opportunity to ask him for permission to marry me! On our second night in Rome, Alex asked me to come out onto our balcony that was picked intentionally with its towering view of the Eternal City, as we were getting ready to go out. He got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife and pulled out the most beautifully sparkly ring I have ever seen. We both burst into tears. I said ‘yes’ of course and celebrated by heading out for a really romantic dinner. We were in such a bubble, it was incredible. We delayed telling our friends and family until the next day (we let our parents know), so that we could truly live in the moment that we’d created.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (6)

We knew we wanted to get married in the summer, and I was under strict instructions from Alex to avoid the football season due to our football mad families. We set our hearts on 6th June 2015 – which is actually D-Day! One week after the conclusion of the Premiership season!

We’ve had many romantic weeks and even a few New Year’s Eves in Windermere up in the Lake District over our 6 year relationship. It’s also somewhere we used to go as kids with our families before we met – weirdly enough! We both decided on the Lakes pretty early in the planning – we’re both from the North (me from Liverpool and Alex from Bradford) so we wanted somewhere meaningful but a middle ground. We saw a few venues in the area before we came across the Merewood Country House Hotel. It had the stunning views of Windermere we wanted, plus it was such a historic mansion (once the home of the Earl of Lonsdale) with beautiful interiors. Once we met Lorna (the fierce Scottish manager!) we knew it was meant to be. She went out of her way to make things happen for us and it was like coming home every time we came to visit the venue. Once we tasted the food that was it, we signed on the dotted line.

I am Catholic and it was really important to me to get married in a church. We tied the knot at Sacred Heart Catholic church in Coniston perched above the lake. It was a very Cumbrian looking slate church with gorgeous stained glass windows. Father Bob was really good at making the service enjoyable for people who weren’t religious; we had so many moving comments from guests about the ceremony and it was really inclusive.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (14)

Our wedding day was inspired by a weekend we had in Cinque Terre when we were still living in Italy. It was a year to the day until we got married and we walked between the stunning Italian towns on the coast. They’re five fishing towns in Liguria made up of warm copper colours, with yellow and pinks, with lots of luscious plants and the sea close by. It was a very romantic weekend and I was really inspired by the tones. My flowers by Jane Thompson at Flower Design, reflected these colours and included many Italian foliage. Our wines and some of the menu also had a subtle Italian theme. I even propped my mood board for Jane in the hallway of the Merewood on the day.

Our colour scheme was coral and greens – I wanted to remind us of the stunning Mediterranean colours and vibrancy of Cinque Terre – even though we were celebrating with guests in the English Lakes, it really worked with the beauty of another special place for Alex and I.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (16)

For my wedding gown, I knew I wanted something fitted, but elegant. I tried on a few ballgowns and they really didn’t suit my curvy figure, so I narrowed my search down to sweetheart neckline with a trumpet style fit and flare gown. I went to about 5 shops with my mum and bridesmaids and left empty handed, sadly. A few weeks later, on a whim my mum and I went to Society Brides  in Liverpool city centre and they had just received Sophia Tolli’s dreamy lace Brienne and they persuaded me to try it on. It was meant to be, it was the one for me.

My veil was a two-tiered veil from Richard Designs. I wanted the drama of a chapel length veil for our church wedding but also the blusher over my face, which I could flick back and wear all day. My headpiece was from Glitzy Secrets and the flowers worked really well with the lace of my dress. My shoes and earrings were from Jenny Packham at Debenhams. The shoes were so comfortable; I danced in them all night long.

My signature scent was the spicy and oriental Calincantus by the ancient apothecary Santa Maria Novella in Florence. I wear it on special occasions now, Alex loves it too. I also wore a vintage pearl bracelet from the gorgeous antique jewellers in Nottingham which is where all our rings are from.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (22)

Alex is into his style so he knew early on that he wanted a tailored three-piece suit in navy blue. I found Michelsberg Tailors in Leeds’ Victoria Arcade on a wedding blog, and the process began. He even had a shirt tailored with his initials ‘AB’ on the cuffs. Why should the brides have all the fun?!

I bought him some solid silver cufflinks in the shape of white roses (the symbol of Yorkshire for my Yorkshire groom) from an amazing lady on Etsy called Sarah-Jane Egan based in Caerphilly. He wore black Loake’s dress shoes and a pistachio green tie from Reiss.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (24)

My three bridesmaids wore coral convertible dresses which were actually from New Look. They all wore them differently to suit their figures and they were all floor length versions. I loved how they looked with their bouquets and they swished around the dance floor in them all night. Their shoes were strappy light gold sandals from Dune and I bought them rose gold tear-drop earrings to wear on the day.

The groomsmen wore navy blue two-piece suits from Charles Trywhitt in Leeds with silk green ties with leaves on them.

Our two flower girls – one was my niece, Catherine and the other was Alex’s cousin’s little girl, Sophie – wore pretty ivory dresses and shoes from John Lewis. I made their headbands with flowers from H&M and a very interesting few hours with a glue gun in my parents’ kitchen.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (29)

The day was wonderful because the start was so chilled. In the morning myself, my mum and my three bridesmaids donned our floral robes and sipped prosecco. Lorna set up a table in the bridal suite for me and the bridesmaids to have breakfast which was lovely. It was great to start the day so relaxed and looked after. We had so much fun with utterly adorable Katie Tweedale our hairdresser for the day, and the fabulous Bridget Foster on make-up who were loving our 1990s playlist and our Liverpudlian humour!

But our (joint!) real favourite part of the day was turning around to our guests in the church as we were about to walk down the aisle to see their faces when our brother in law Richard began to play us out to ‘Match of the Day’ on his piano! No one expected it and both families are huge football fans so we got a great reaction – even some high 5s as we made our way out of the church! That was such a proud and fun moment for both of us – we literally floated out of the church.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (36)

Our guests had come from far and wide – even as far as the USA and Italy so we wanted everyone to relax. We hired a Routemaster bus from Classic Buses to collect everyone at the Merewood and take the guests to and from the church. I sourced a vintage ticket clipper for my bus geek of an Uncle Brian who was able to clip pretend tickets for everyone getting on the bus with the help of his granddaughter. I’m not sure who enjoyed it more!

I travelled to the church with my parents and my 4-year-old niece in a 1937 Rolls Royce which was fabulous and owned by the lovely Tony Henderson at Lakeland Wedding Cars. I felt no nerves travelling to the church and the scenery was really gorgeous. Alex and I then travelled back in the car to the Merewood and sipped a few glasses of bubbles in the back. We got a lot of waves and cheers from the mountain climbers and walkers en route.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (45)

Our photographer was James Tracey. He’d shot a wedding of a friend a few years back in Manchester’s Victoria Baths and I loved his style. He captured all the emotions of a wedding day and we booked him very early on in the process. Our pre-shoot in April was really fun with James, even though it was blowing a gale in Manchester, he still made us laugh and we loved the photos. On our wedding day, James brought along the lovely Daniel Lloyd Photography who assisted on the day. The two of them were really good at getting in there and getting on with things and letting us get back to our guests. We really appreciated that. I’d recommend both of them, we love the vibrancy and realness of our photographs.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (67)

My flowers were my favourite things about the day (after marrying the love of my life, of course!) We chose Jane Thompson at Flower Design early on – she’s based in Blackpool and made time for us on our flying visits back from Italy. Jane totally got what we wanted from our wedding day. In our pre-meet a few weeks before the meeting she made prototypes of my bouquet and the table settings. It was a wrench to give my prototype bouquet back!

My bouquet included coral & bowl of cream peonies, viburnum opulus, fresh lily of the valley, apricot hyacinths, olive foliage, juliet & patience roses from David Austin, white hydrangeas, sperengerii, eucalyptus, umbrella fern, sweet peas and lovely fragrant rosemary. The peonies changed throughout the day and opened up, I really loved how they looked and the scent was to die for.

All the groomsmen’s’ boutonnieres were totally different. Alex commented that his white peony looked like a scoop of gelato (ice-cream)!

In the church we had posies to match the flowers in the bouquets, tied in little jars at the pew-ends. These were then transported to the Merewood and dotted around the reception.

The Merewood’s dining tables were decorated with the gorgeous crystal cake plinths topped with relaxed designs featuring a stunning combination of roses, peonies, hydrangeas, gloriosa rothschild and sweet peas and foliage with Italian Olive foliage, with real peaches and apricots scattered about. Jane used the same flowers on the top table in a range of different glass vases and vessels, they were so pretty in the afternoon sunlght. We chose low flower displays so our guests could enjoy the Lakeland countryside from the Merewood’s huge windows.

We took lots of our flowers to our minimoon hotel which was close by and scattered them around our suite. They lasted until the end of the minimoon!

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (52)

We used the very patient Kerry from Project Pretty in Chester for our Save the Dates and invitations, the green backgrounds and coral flowers hinted at our colour scheme. Kerry also made the menus for each table which we stood up on old Prosecco corks we collected in Italy. Kerry was really easy to work with, even after our many amends on countless proofs!

I also designed the order of services for the church and my mum got these printed out in Liverpool. I collected family wedding photographs from both sets of parents of their own weddings and the weddings of their parents and they took pride of place in the hall way of the Merewood next to Alex’s Roman head which he has had since he was about 15! I also covered the J & A with special paper and glue to sit alongside these bits in the hallway of the Merewood to make it more personal.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (56)

The gold calligraphy table numbers were handmade in Texas by Tina at Better Off Wed. I loved how they looked against the flowers. We also hired gold Cheltenham chairs from Lancashire Event Hire, they tied in with the gold tones throughout the day.

I made the table plan from scratch and printed the table cards myself. I found the frame in a charity shop and painted it and bought the lace to string the tables onto it from a craft shop. The table plan sat on a really ornate gold easel from Megan at Typical Type. I loved how it turned out! We also hired a huge light up heart from Megan at Typical Type, this was really fun later on on the dancefloor and we got some great group shots after hours with it!

I also made the confetti out of coloured tissue paper and the confetti cones out of doilies which everyone used outside the church. We went bright on colour because you never know how the weather will be in the Lakes. I was really happy with the colours!

My bridesmaid Kate made the card sign which we hung on a vintage wicker picnic basket and bunting out of gorgeously pretty floral material, it looked so lovely on the day. I also bought tasseling for the sweet table and pom poms from Decopoms on Etsy which were dotted around the bar area.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (53)

Instead of favours we had a sweet table which my bridesmaid Claire organised the sweets for. She has a massive sweet tooth! We hired the jars and containers from local wedding stylist Amy Brunton at Sure to Surprise You and Amy styled the dresser with lace and pearls. I bought some peachy tasseling from Etsy to go along the sweet table.

Alex is a Yorkshire boy and one of our first dates was in Betty’s York on August 1st 2009. We decided early on that the cake would be from Betty’s, choosing between them was the hard part. In the end we went for three-tiered cake with two layers of their famous fondant fancies and the top layer was iced Swiss Sacher chocolate and apricot cake. It came with the most stunning solid silver cake stand and knife which were nearly 100 years old.

Lorna saved us two cakes and we ate these the next day in our suite with some champagne at the Gilpin and wallowed in the love.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (55)

We chose The Twentysomethings after researching and finding them online. They’re a covers band with great vocals and a trumpeter and saxophonist so they played all sorts from Prince to Daft Punk and Shaka Khan. It was really easy to work with Daniel and the band to get the set list right. Everyone danced all night, it was wonderful to see everyone letting their hair down and partying with us.

Music played a big part in our day. We had a close family friend, Richard, who is a super talented pianist play the music in the church. I entered to a really special song for both of us, the Cinematic Orchestra’s ‘To Build A Home’, and we left the church on a high with ‘Match of the Day’. It was amazing to have him play for us during these special moments.

Our first dance was to Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Everywhere’ – they’re one of our favourite bands and we learned a fun 2 minute routine with Emma-Joy at All Steps who visited our house to teach us. Our guests loved it and it really set the tone for the night – the second song was ‘You Can Call Me Al’ for Alex! Everyone went crazy for that!

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (61)

I would whole-heartedly recommend the Merewood, it’s intimate enough to feel like home but grand enough to really make the day special. Lorna and her team quite frankly know their weddings so if something really won’t work they’ll tell you and suggest an alternative. That’s really helpful during wedding planning. They looked after every single guest and worked so hard to make everything run smoothly. Planning a wedding from aboard can be tough, but Lorna and the team at the Merewood were great over email and kept us updated on things.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (71)

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (76)

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (80)

We spent 3 romantic days at the Gilpin Lodge near Windermere in a garden suite with our private hot-tube, next to a very interested family of llamas. It was lovely to be surrounded by Jane’s flowers and to read our cards and open our gifts. We enjoyed lots of great food and some lovely spa treatments, as well as a cruise on Windermere.

Our proper honeymoon or maximoon is in October this year and we are going to India for three weeks. We’ll visit India’s spiritual centre in Rishikesh (the home of yoga), the have a few days in Delhi, then head to Agra and the Taj Mahal, then we’ll go on safari in Ranthambore and hopefully see some tigers, followed by a few nights in Jaipur (the Pink City) and Udaipur to the stunning lake. We both love India food and adventure.

A Colourful Wedding in the North West (c) James Tracey Photography (87)

Make time for each other throughout the day were you take in everything that is going on around you. It goes in the blink of an eye, so it’s important to have a few parts of the day alone to appreciate what you have achieved and what it means now for both of you. The amazingness has just begun, really.

continue reading

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on LinkedInEmail to someone

winter opulence. ian stuart for a romantic wedding in the lake district – emma & andy

June 8th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (34)

When planning their wedding, today’s couple say they very much wanted the occasion to revolve around the most important things in their lives – family, friends and love.

Taking just one look at the images below, it’s clear to see that they achieved their aim perfectly, making the day both loving and personable.

We adore Emma’s classic Ian Stuart gown and her maids’ pretty sparkling dresses, all of which tie beautifully with the elegant décor and dreamy hotel setting.

Regardless of what the weather is doing outside today, this wonderful winter wedding is guaranteed to make you feel all warm inside.

With images by Steven Taylor Photography and video by Silver Sixpence Films.

Andy and Emma from Silver Sixpence Films on Vimeo.

emma says: Andy proposed to me at home. It was the 20th October 2012 and I was getting ready to go out on one of our ‘date nights’. As I walked into a candle-lit living room with champagne filled glasses out on the table, my heart started racing. Andy got down on knee and then went on to tell me why he wanted to marry me before popping the question. As you can imagine, I was a blubbering wreck by the end, and of course I blurted out ‘yes’!

We booked our wedding for Saturday 31st January as we both wanted a romantic winter wedding and we thought it was the perfect time of year to hold it. Funnily enough, it was only afterwards that we realised it was exactly four years to the day that we actually met. It was obviously fate and we were meant to book that date.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (16)

We held our wedding at the stunning Merewood Country House Hotel in the Lake District. We both love the lakes and have spent a lot of time there so it seemed only natural – being one of the most romantic places in England, we knew it was the place for us to get married. We chose the Merewood as we really wanted our family and friends to feel like they were coming to somewhere homely, rather than a hotel, which was helped with us having exclusivity of the venue. As soon as you walk in it has such a cosy and warm feel to it with the open fires greeting you in the reception. It’s grand but still intimate at the same time.

I asked my two best friends and my sister to be bridesmaids and my beautiful little niece and they were all just amazing. I also asked four of my closest friends to walk down the aisle in front of me as sadly my beloved Dad passed away from cancer in September 2012. It was lovely to have all my closest girlfriends there with me right before I walked down as they have all been a great support to me over the years and it was definitely the right choice as I felt secure in the fact that if I did have a wobble, they were there. Luckily I walked in and saw everyone’s beaming faces and then I caught my future husband’s eye and he just gave me a reassuring look that he wasn’t far away – I just took a deep breath and I couldn’t stop smiling as I walked towards him.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (18)

We didn’t have a theme as such, but there were parts of the day that hinted at our styles and influences. For example my late Granddad, my Dad’s father, was a film buff and the manager of a cinema when it was all on film. I just loved to watch all of the old movies with him so Andy and I did our wedding invites like an old Hollywood cinema ticket (which our guests tore off and then sent back as an rsvp).

There is something so romantic about a winter wedding, so for my colour scheme I wanted to keep it very simple, classic and beautiful with elegance to it. I just adore whites, creams, greys and soft colours together, and it was fabulous that all the bridal party coordinated their outfits around that palette too. I wanted it to look magical, with a touch of glamour and sparkle!

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (27)

The dress I chose was an Ian Stuart couture gown from Ava Rose Hamilton in Silsden, Yorkshire. I knew I had found the one, as it not only exuded glamour with an edge to it, but it was also timeless and feminine. I found inspiration from Jackie Kennedy’s wedding dress that she wore when she married JFK in 1953. I just adored the neckline and I found something similar with my gown which gave it that Hollywood Glamour feel to it and I just fell in love instantly.

Andy wore a slim fit dark blue three-piece suit that he bought from Slaters in Leeds with a white shirt and a white tie and he also wore Kurt Geiger tanned brogues. He had tried on Paul Smith, Hugo Boss and viewed many other suits, but Slater’s had a huge variety and the fits were perfect – not to mention the price!

For my beautiful bridesmaids I chose dresses from a website called Virgos Lounge. I loved that they were a bit different and very glamorous and with it being winter the soft light grey and the iridescent leaf shaped embellishment on the dresses looked stunning.

The best man, usher and the father of the groom all wore suits also bought from Slaters in Leeds. We went for something slightly different from Andy’s suit, so we picked out a very similar one for the men but in a dark grey with light blue/grey spotted white ties, which really complemented all the girls’ dresses. The boys also all wore Kurt Geiger tanned brogues.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (28)

When it came to the wedding photos we sought advice from our wedding co-ordinator and chose a local award-winning photographer known very well by the venue. Steven Taylor was superb from our first meeting to the end of our wedding day. He listened to our thoughts and did the most amazing job on the day with his son Josh and after receiving the proofs back recently, we understand why they are award-winning – they captured the whole day perfectly. We also had Silver Sixpence Films to capture the day on video for us.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (40)

On the day I carried a beautiful, opulent massed posy bouquet of ivory roses, lisianthus and gypsophila bound with ivory satin ribbon. They were provided by Kevin from Brackens of Bowness.

With us deciding on a romantic ivory and cream wedding, we opted to have tall vases for the reception centrepieces, filled with acorns with tall willow branches and hanging glass tea-light holders. On the other tables we had round shallow glass bowls filled with acorns and twisted ivory willow with a cluster of candles in the centre. Down the staircase we had willow and foliage wound down the banister with fairy lights intertwined. Kevin from Brackens of Bowness again supplied these stunning arrangements. He was amazing and listened to everything that I wanted to achieve. With Kevin’s talent and creativity he helped make the venue look like the fairy-tale wedding I had always dreamed of.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (37)

We didn’t do favours at the wedding breakfast. Instead we had personalised chocolate bars created for our family and friends who were staying at the hotel and placed them in their rooms for their arrival.

We opted for a four-course wedding breakfast. It took us a little while to decide on the menu as all of the food is so delicious and it is also locally sourced. In the evening, we had mini fish and chips served in traditional newspaper cones. It was all absolutely delicious!

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (39)

We both enjoy music, so it featured heavily throughout the day. The thinking was to have very much beautiful and relaxing music, building as the day went on so we had a string quartet to entertain people before and after the ceremony. Andy recorded a live DJ mix for the wedding breakfast containing music from our favourite films interlaced with famous quotes from cinema.

To get the evening started, Andy had also prepared some warm up before a fantastic rock band called Blue Star Tattoo from West Yorkshire performed on the night with classics by AC/DC, ZZ Top and The Who, through to more current hits by The Killers, Kings of Leon and Arctic Monkeys. We chose this band as a nod to my Dad Geoff (and Andy’s Dad John) who both love rock and roll.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (46)

In the library we displayed family photos of our nearest and dearest to give a homely feel and also in remembrance to special people who could not be there with us that weekend. With candles lit and love quotes added around the fireplaces, it added to the romantic and relaxing ambience of the venue.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (48)

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (47)

We used Purple Swan for the hire of our chair covers, which were white with crystal vintage brooches on ivory lace sashes and bows. The company were fabulous and made everything so easy and stress free by dressing the room the night before and they were so professional. I bought the lanterns and candles from the shop The Range in Leeds to add a touch of romance down the aisle as well.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (49)

We would most definitely recommend our venue to others. Everything about it is fabulous, from the views to the food, and the first class service. The venue has so much character, it still has many of the original features, which include magnificent fireplaces and gorgeous stained glass windows. We felt at home as soon as we walked in. No matter how many times you visit, when it’s time to go home, you just don’t want to leave.

My favourite part of the day was sitting down to eat the amazing food at the wedding breakfast next to my new husband and looking around at all of our favourite people in the world, all sat together and there just for us was simply the best feeling in the whole world.

A romantic winter wedding in The Lake District (c) Steven Taylor Photography (58)

We are planning to go on honeymoon to Santorini this summer to catch some sun and some amazing scenery, and as Andy is obsessed with sunsets (apparently they have some of the best in the world), we couldn’t think of anywhere more romantic to go.

My top tip to other Brides Up North is to make sure you enjoy the lead up to your wedding day, enjoy being engaged. The day itself goes so fast, I know it sounds cliché but it does so take time out with your new groom/bride for a few moments during the day and evening as you are both in demand and so busy. It’s lovely to have a few moments now and again to both look around and think – ‘This is our wedding day, how amazing is this?’

continue reading

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on LinkedInEmail to someone

Cafe Au Lait. Justin Alexander Signature For A Real Wedding In Windermere – Rebecca & Aidy

September 19th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Mick Cookson Photography

This morning we’re in Windermere as we join Rebecca and Aidy for their Real Wedding celebration.  When budgeting Rebecca was careful to spend money on the things that mattered most to her – which meant a beautiful setting, amazing food and one supremely gorgeous wedding gown…

With images by Mick Cookson Photography.

Mick Cookson Photography

Rebecca says: Aidy proposed in April 2012 at the church we were to be married, Jesus Church in Troutbeck, whilst sitting on the churchyard bench.  We were married on 13th July 2013 with the reception at Merewood Country House Hotel, Windermere. 

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Although we’re not from the Cumbria area we wanted somewhere different so a friend recommended the Lake District, as her sister had got married there. After looking round a recommended hotel that didn’t end up suiting our needs, by chance we found its sister hotel – Merewood Country House. As soon as we walked in I knew this was the place! It felt cosy and intimate, beautifully furnished, and I especially loved the 1940’s feel of the bar! The hotel would be exclusive to us on the day and with the stunning views it was perfect!

If you ever see the church for real it’s obvious why we chose it:  located in an idyllic setting, a beautiful valley, and very picturesque, the church was very bright and cosy inside and known as the ‘gem’ of the community!

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

I wore an Antique Gold Justin Alexander Signature 9690 with a full length cream veil (no tiers) from The Harrogate Wedding Lounge. I know all brides love their dress but I have to say this is an absolutely stunning piece! The amount of genuine wows I got from my guests: you know the difference between polite compliments and “wow!” This dress is a must see in the flesh!

My hair was by Kirby Blythe in North Lincolnshire, Kirby herself made the trip to prepare and do our hair.

Helen Dixon one of the salon owners at Time For You in North Lincolnshire and a friend of mine did our make up.

Mick Cookson Photography

My bridesmaid dresses (60s style) were from an on-line shop Courtesan Boutique in West Sussex and the groomsmen wore electric blue tailor-Made suits from King & Allen in Wilmslow. 

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

I carried a bouquet a ivory calla lilies with ivy foliage by Brackens of Bowness in Windermere. 

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

It’s really hard to say what the best bit was, as this is a one-off experience the whole day becomes one of, if not the favourite day of your life! My husband however, said his best part of the day was seeing me walk down the aisle, and for him to say that is unexpected so I must have made a good impression!

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

I tried to match the cake to my dress… three round tiers in mushroom/beige coloured icing decorated with white lace.

Mick Cookson Photography

I didn’t want any ‘special touches’ like a lot of brides do, preferring to spend more on the quality of food, drink, outfits and so on…

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Aidy’s friend was our wedding singer and then a DJ played afterwards.

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

After the wedding we jetted off on holiday to St Lucia. 

Mick Cookson Photography

Mick Cookson Photography

My top tip for Brides Up North would be to have your wedding exactly how you want it despite any pressures from family and friends; they will love everything once they see it all come together!

Another tip would be to make a weekend of it if you can; we arrived on the Thursday and really got to appreciate the build up to the wedding, spending time with friends and family as they arrived over the three days. We were able to witness the hotel preparations, go out for a meal on the Thursday evening, and on the Friday eat on the hotel veranda with most of our guests.

Mick Cookson Photography

Congratulations Rebecca & Aidy!

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

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Mick Cookson Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on LinkedInEmail to someone

Sun-dappled! A Real Wedding In The Lake District – Michelle & Dominic

June 7th, 2012 | Julia Braime

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

It’s a double whammy rollover jackpot of Real Wedding gorgeousness today, the second offering being this beautiful sun-dappled Lake District wedding, sent to my by Toby and Hannah who together make up Red On Blonde Photography and real bride Michelle.

.

It’s a nice day for a white wedding…

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

Michelle says: Dom proposed on our first anniversary. We had gone to The Gatehouse restaurant in Lancaster to celebrate, and he popped the question at the end of the meal – I had a feeling he was going to but it was still a surprise!

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography   A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

We were married on 26th June 2011 at the Jesus Church in Troutbeck, and had our wedding reception at The Merewood Country House Hotel in Windermere.  We both fell in love with The Merewood the moment we saw it, and for me especially it was the type of place I’d always dreamed of getting married. The views of the grounds and the lake are beautiful, and the hotel itself is gorgeous. We also loved the fact that the hotel was ours exclusively both the night before and on the day. It made us feel like we were in our own little world.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

We didn’t decide upon a theme, it was more of a natural development. I’m drawn to a lot of vintage looks, I love pretty florals, roses and lots of pearls, and so the wedding took on a very classic look.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

I chose a dress by Maggie Sottero, which we found at Dan Kerr in Blackpool. I went to loads of bridal shops but as soon as I tried it on I knew it was the one – it was liquid silk with only a small underskirt and had pearls and Swarovski crystals decorating the bodice. I also wore a small matching tiara and a tiered veil, which was decorated with pearl drops. I didn’t wear it for long though, the day was too hot!

.

I carried a bouquet of white roses, with pearl and diamante sprigs from Valerie Ann’s in Windermere.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

I arrived at the church In a vintage Rolls Royce which we then used for our trip to the reception afterwards.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

My bridesmaids wore 50’s style prom dresses from BHS in fuchsia. I chose the colour and shorter length because I wanted them to be fun and more laid back, especially when everything else was so formal. I’m so glad I did as for me this really sums up the whole day – it was traditional but so much fun!

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

We went for classic ivory with all the suits, table and seat covers and of course my dress as well. I also wanted to try and inject some fun into the day and the  fuchsia bridesmaids dresses definitely brightened the pictures up! I was very keen on not letting the fuchsia overpower the rest of the room during the wedding breakfast, so I tied them into the room through a small sprinkling of fuchsia glitter on the tables and ribbon on the cake. I think it added the colour pop that I wanted, without being too overpowering.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

We chose a four tier fruit cake from Imaginative Cakes in Horwich. it was decorated with fuchsia ribbon, pearls and had beautiful sugar flowers with fuchsia glitter on top.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

My favourite part of the day was when Dominic and I had our pictures taken. After such an eventful day it was great to wander off into the hotel grounds together, I don’t think we’d got much chance to see each other until then!

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

My mum hand made our save the date cards, wedding invitations, and order of services: she did such a good job.

.

As wedding favours we gave breast cancer pins to the women and England pins to the men, and made donations to breast cancer and cancer research in the name of each guest. We felt that the money would be put to much better use this way, and was also a subtle way of remembering those we’d lost in the day’s celebrations.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

We asked a friend to DJ for us, Kieran from Aardvark Entertainment in Lancaster. He did a great job. He played something for everyone, and I’ll never forget dancing to some Ska in my wedding dress!

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

After the wedding, we went to Costa Adeje in Tenerife for a week. I’d been there previously with family, and we decided that after all the stress of planning a wedding, we wanted to go somewhere we knew we would have a great honeymoon rather than try somewhere new.

.

.

A Lake District Wedding by Red On Blonde Photography

.

.

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to accept help from those who offer it! My parents helped out with loads, especially my mum – I don’t think we’d have known where to start if it wasn’t for her!

.

.

Congratulations Michelle & Dominic!

.

.

Are you a newly wed?  Contact Brides Up North to share your Real Wedding memories!

.

.

  – Images © 2012 Red On Blonde Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

.

.

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on LinkedInEmail to someone