Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

Birds Of A Feather, A Real Wedding – Andy & Sally

July 26th, 2011 | Julia Braime

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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As I said just this Saturday on the wedding blog, I am all for featuring all different kinds of weddings in these pages and refuse to be shoe-horned into one genre.  Today’s Real Wedding is Brides Up North Featured Supplier Andy Pickard Peacock Pix’s own, and would probably fall into the “offbeat” category.  However, when I came to blog this Andy’s wedding I realised that there was nothing offbeat about it.  In fact, it was so “onbeat” with Andy’s fun and kooky personality, it was untrue. 

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This wedding is quirky, it’s fun and it’s beautiful.  There’s a whole lot of peacock feathers, a whole load of inflatable guitars and a whole lorra love in these two amazing settings!  Fandabydosy!

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography 

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Over to the groom: What  does a wedding photographer do when it’s comes to the point of realisation that they can’t shoot their own wedding?  Sally and I spent many hours searching the internet looking for that special person, someone who had the flair and romantic style to capture our unique peacock inspired wedding.  Andrew Billington Photography stood head and shoulders above all contenders with his fabulous eye and unmistakable style. Andy managed to capture every emotion filled moment with the decadent grandeur we envisioned when planning our once in a lifetime celebration.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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We had planned a truly spectacular day from the pink Cadillac to the live rock band (Wild Turkey – Halifax’s premier party band)  and 100 inflatable guitars for all the budding air guitarists at our evening hog roast reception.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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Sally designed her dress, made the bridesmaids’ jewellery, cake bands, table centres, hand fasting tie and also hand-embellished the invitations as well as sourcing many one of a kind hand crafted details such as her tiara, her bouquet of leather roses & peacock feathers, the Lego couple for the wedding cake and my wedding coat.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography 

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The two part ceremony – civil plus Pagan hand fasting – took place at Newstead Abbey, ancestral home of poet and playboy Lord Byron resplendent with with gothic architecture, sweeping grounds, lakes and (of course!) peacocks.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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The venue also inspired our choice of wedding attire with velvet frock coat and frills for myself and Sally’s bespoke silk corseted dress featuring over 100 peacock feathers.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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Forever Green Restaurant in Sherwood Forest supplied a magical secluded woodland setting for the hog roast reception and the party rocked on well into the night!

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography 

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Andrew Billington Photography .

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Fancy sharing your Real Wedding memories on the wedding blogGet in touch! 

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2011 Andrew Billington Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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Fabulous Photographer: Peacock Pix

July 16th, 2011 | Julia Braime

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Andy of Peacock Pix, today’s featured Fabulous Photographer on the wedding blog, is a kooky creative.  I love him! Though to be honest I’d love anyone who had a rock band and 100 inflatable guitars at their wedding…read on!

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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Over to Mr Peacock Pix

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How did you get into wedding photography?

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I am a self-taught photographer, although I taught digital photography to others for eight years. I have always been a keen photographer; starting from my eighth birthday present: a Kodak Box Brownie and progressing over the years through film SLRs to digital SLRs. In 2008 I shot my first wedding and was hooked!

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Why wedding photography specifically?

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While I’m passionate about all photography and am rarely seen without one camera or another, weddings are the ultimate challenge for me; so many shooting styles & techniques are required, so many once-only chances to capture the perfect shot in telling the story of the perfect wedding day.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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What is your favourite thing about being a wedding photographer?

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That’s easy! I just love being the one to record all those intimate moments and special details that go to making a wedding day unique, to capture a permanent record that can be enjoyed by the couple and their family time and time again. 

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How do you get couples to relax on the day?

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I endeavour to meet couples in person at least once prior to the wedding and hopefully visit their venue with them to discuss what they would like from their wedding shoot.  I feel that it’s essential to listen to what people want rather than impose any particular style. At this time I’ll take some informal shots to put the couple at their ease, so that on the day we know each other better.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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Any advice to any brides who don’t like to have their picture taken?

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My advice would be to relax and try not to worry. To enjoy their day and forget that I’m there, after all I’m only there to capture their day. I also find that the pre-wedding meeting and shoot is an ideal time to dispel any concerns and offer reassurance.

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What sort of makeup should a bride wear to look great in her pictures?

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That’s really up to the individual bride, whatever style the bride wants and feels most comfortable with will help me produce the most natural relaxed images.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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Anything to avoid which might look bad in the wedding pictures?

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It’s best not to try a brand new look for the first time on your wedding day but I’m sure everyone tries out their ideas beforehand. As long as the wedding party are happy the result will be great images.

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Which celebrity wedding would you most like to photograph and why?

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If Jonathan Ross and Jane Goldman ever decide to renew their vows I’d love to be the one to capture the party. I like to celebrate the uniqueness of a wedding and I’m guessing that Jonathan and Jane would have a VERY unique celebration indeed.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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Any memorable weddings that you have captured?

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All weddings are memorable but I’ve been lucky as there have a been a couple of really fabulous ones in the last couple of years – a wedding at a Devon beach resort where the couple wanted the entire weekend capturing including a surfing competition and beach party on Saturday and their vintage 1970s style wedding on Sunday and secondly the double hand fasting at Stonehenge (which was showcased on this wedding blog recently).

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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Are you married?  Tell us about your day.

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Yes I am; in fact my wife Sally often accompanies me to shoots as second camera for bigger weddings. We were married last August at Newstead Abbey, the ancestral home of Lord Byron. We had a peacock theme and we both took the opportunity to dress extravagantly with literally hundreds of peacock feathers involved! We followed the civil ceremony with a fabulously moving hand fasting in a wooded glade in the Abbey grounds and then held a reception at Forever Green restaurant, beautifully situated in Sherwood Forest featuring a hog roast, live rock band and 100 inflatable guitars.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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What sets you apart from other wedding photographers?

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My passion – I’m not saying others don’t have passion but for me it’s more than just a job; I have a need to do the best I can and create a unique record for each couple. My wife says I suffer from OCD – Obsessive Camera Disorder.

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I create images for couples in love, great wedding photography tells stories, capturing the unique personality and intimate moments of a wedding. I focus on the relationships between people, capturing their expressions and emotions, often taking the picture without anyone knowing. I try to document every key moment, from the preparation through to the first dance.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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What can a couple who book you expect on the day?

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A bespoke service – I shoot what they want, not just my signature shots. If a couple have particular photographs or look they would like taken in a particular way then I can deliver. I do however put my personality into the shoot which marks it out as a Peacock Pix event.

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What is included in your "package"?

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All our packages include a pre-wedding meeting and venue visit to discuss what they would like from me; full wedding day coverage from preparations to first dance; 250+ high resolution images, fully edited which come on DVD with permission to reproduce the images as the couple and their family desire.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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Can you give us an idea on price?

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As a Northerner I believe in value for money –all packages include full day coverage. My prices start at £450 and range to £1000 depending on what extras you choose to include. Full details are available at www.peacockpix.co.uk

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Can you do a discount for Brides Up North readers?

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Yes, all clients who mention Brides Up North when booking can have a complimentary pre-wedding shoot with 2 x12x8 prints and a 15% discount on any of our wedding packages.  This offer will be available for all weddings booked in 2011.

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Peacock Pix

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How can Brides Up North get in touch with you/ see more examples of your work?

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Visit my websites:
www.peacockpix.co.uk
http://peacockpix.blogspot.com/

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or follow me on Twitter @Peacockpix

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Anything else we should know?

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If any couples who are reading this are planning an unusual, creative or funky wedding please get in touch as we may offer additional extras to shoot really funky weddings.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2011 Peacock Pix

Peacock Pix is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier

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

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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Cakes and Canapes by The Cooking Fairy

December 7th, 2010 | Julia Braime

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My friend Charlotte, aka The Cooking Fairy, is a fellow blogger and skilled home cook. She lives by the mantra “work hard, play hard- but eat fabulous food”. She writes for young professionals who either love cooking or are intrigued to learn more about it and regularly contributes to The Leeds Guide. Check out her blog for recipe inspirations and don’t forget to follow her activity on twitter @cookingfairy.

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The Cooking Fairy.Charlotte

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Today on the blog, The Cooking Fairy steps in to give advice where Brides Up North lacks skill – about all things kitchen related!  So, mixing bowls at the ready, its over to Charlotte!

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First up, some ideas for a wedding cake with a difference…

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Wedding Cakes are a major focus of your big day, so they need to look fab!  A celebration cake should reflect the couple’s personality and personal style. So, what can you do if flowers, frills and trims just aren’t your thing? Here’s a my top 5 favourite alternatives:

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Cool Cupcakes

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These are great as each guest gets an individual portion! The icing can be themed to match the style of the wedding and can be beautifully hand crafted. Cupcake wedding cakes are great if you are on a budget. They can really look a million dollars.

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cupcake wedding cake

Photograph via Yum Sugar

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Doughnut Tower

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These can look absolutely amazing and they taste fantastic as well. They can be beautifully decorated with a white icing to complement your white wedding or decorated with flowers for an exotic twist. A yummy alternative to the traditional wedding cake.

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Doughnut Cake

Photograph via discussion boards at weddingbee.com

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Themed Wedding Cake

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Take your pick. What pastimes do you share together? Have a think. Could this work as a cake?

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After something less sweet?  Try…

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Pork Pie Wedding Cake

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For the savoury snack lover. These look absolutely amazing and will really feature as a talking point at your big day. Great as an additional feature at the evening buffet.

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Pork Pie Cake    Cheese Cake

Photographs via Brays Cottage and Norbiton Cheese

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Cheese Cake

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This works fantastically as an after dinner course. Decorate with grapes to garnish. It is possible to select such a broad array of cheeses and flavours that you can meet everyone’s taste. A cheese wedding cake adds a novelty edge and oozes class!

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 What about Canapés?

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Canapés are an essential to any “full day” wedding event. Your guests will want something light, tasty and which looks beautiful.  Canapés should be as pleasing to the eye as they are to your stomach!

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You need something that won’t be too messy to eat and that really is bite sized. In my view the Canapé flavours should be the perfect accompaniment to champagne.

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Canapés can traditionally be salty or spiced. This is widely understood to be because during a drinks reception, the host should encourage the guests to drink more! However in modern times they can encompass a huge variety of  flavours.

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To plan the perfect reception, I would always recommend doing a selection of 30% hot canapés, 40% cold canapés, and 30% vegetarian canapés. This will ensure that you cater for all guests and additionally take the pressure off the serving staff from having to deliver piping hot canapés.

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Here are a few of The Cooking Fairy’s  favourite canapés:

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Smoked salmon belinis

Asparagus and Hollandaise crostinis

Scallops and pancetta

Tomato and goats cheese mini tartlets.

Monkfish and Chorizo skewer

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I would always recommend serving the canapés on a mirrored surface for a glamorous effect. Using slate, or wood always looks fantastic too. I attended a wedding recently, where canapés were served on reclaimed teak blocks. This looked amazing, and fabulously stylish.

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Canapes

Photograph provided by The Cooking Fairy

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If you’re planning on having a destination or summer wedding why not consider tropical themed canapés served on a banana leaf?

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If you have any questions or would like any further guidance, contact The Cooking Fairy via the Panic Button on her website, or by emailing charlotte@cookingfairy.co.uk

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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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