October 18th, 2016 | Laura McDonagh
The vintage-themed real wedding that we’re sharing today features spectacular views, a relaxed and rustic vibe and a big ol’ slice of pretty.
As well as being mesmerised by the beauty of this wedding it’s also given me a new life goal: to taste a big ol’ slice of pink lemonade cake. Yes, you read that right – pink lemonade cake! What could be more wonderful on an autumnal Tuesday morning?
Photographs by Jenny Winstone Photography.
sabine says: We got engaged at home on Christmas Eve, 2014. Steven cooked us a three course meal and told me that I could open one of my Christmas gifts a day early. I was so excited that I couldn’t wait until we’d finished so he let me open it after the first course. As I tore off the wrapping paper I saw a ring box. He projected a picture of our little boy onto our television screen with the words “Say yes, Mummy” above it, then he got down onto one knee.
Steven has always been one for grand romantic gestures but, as this was our first family Christmas with our six-month-old son Thomas, it really was just perfect. I was quite unwell following complications after childbirth so the fact he wanted to marry me at such a difficult time really meant the world to me; I knew he would be there for us, for better and for worse.
Our wedding date was Sunday 14th August 2016. We chose this date because we love summer, we wanted a weekend and all the Saturdays that month were booked up so we decided a Sunday would work really well.
We got married at The Inn on the Lake: a beautiful hotel with the most spectacular views overlooking Lake Ullswater, in Glenridding, in the Lake District. We love the Lake District, it’s a very special place for us and we love how we can drive an hour-and-a-half from our hectic city life in Manchester and feel a world away with breath-taking views and a more relaxed pace of life.
We were lucky that the weather allowed us to get married outside under the gazebo overlooking the lake. There was also a separate building for the evening reception with a recent and very impressive extension called The Ramblers Bar and Candleroom. We loved the fact that, although our wedding took place at one venue, there were different buildings, sections and huge, stunning grounds.
Theme-wise, our wedding theme was a romantic summer wedding with a vintage vibe. We knew that the surroundings of our wedding venue would provide a romantic feel, plus I love anything and everything vintage and I’m incredibly girly.
October 17th, 2016 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s bride and groom were married at the stunning Warrington Golf Club surrounded by their very nearest and dearest.
The wedding day was a sublime, pink-hued affair with more than a hint of Midsummer Night’s romanticism and revelry.
There were plenty of nods to tradition, including Charlotte’s showstopper of a Camelot-inspired dress, but also plenty of fun, personal touches, such as the Marvel Comics cake and Molly the Chorkie dressed in dusty pink.
So, ready for some romance?
With images by Helen Smiddy of HJS Photography.
charlotte says: We got engaged during a cruise to the Bahamas in June 2014. Chris proposed on a starlit night whilst we were on route to Miami. It was very romantic, although he had to walk me around the ship four times before he plucked up the courage to ask the question!
We decided to get married on 11th June 2016. We chose this date for two reasons: it was exactly two years from the date of the proposal, and I’d always wanted to be a June bride.
We were married at our local church, St Mary’s, in Great Sankey. Chris and I wanted a traditional church wedding, and St Mary’s is so pretty and traditional. We then travelled to Warrington Golf Club for the wedding breakfast and evening celebrations.
Our theme was based around butterflies; I love butterflies, and they always make me think of summer. Our colour scheme was a dusty pink. I’m a self-confessed girly girl and pink has always been my favourite colour.
I wanted a dress and veil that were a little different and suited my style. I’d always admired the fairy-like style of dresses in movies, such as A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Camelot, and I hoped to emulate this style. I bought the dress in Blackpool and had the veil made to match. My shoes were ordered from Monsoon and my hair vine and jewellery were from Debenhams.
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March 30th, 2016 | Julia Braime
We’ve made no secret of the fact that us girls here at Brides Up North HQ are totally crushing on Pantone’s colours for 2016, serenity and rose quartz. We were so taken with the dreamy colours in fact that we put together a style sheet to help inspire brides wanting to incorporate the hot hues into their weddings.
And today we bring you further pretty Pantone inspiration in the form of this stunning styled shoot put together by a talented bunch of Northern suppliers and captured at The Arches @ Dean Clough, a fairly new venue to the Yorkshire wedding scene that’s attracting great attention.
So grab your notebooks and fire up your Pinterest boards as we hand over the blog to Tabby Clegg, Director of Mode for…Events, who was involved in the shoot, to give us the all-important deets!
tabby says: The concept for this shoot came from the fabulous Claire at Sweet Sugar Sixpence, and together with Natasha, from Natasha Jane Events, they developed this dreamy image which I recommended they shoot at one the fantastic venues I work with, The Arches @ Dean Clough in Halifax.
The venue is a beautiful converted Victorian Mill with stone floors, arched brick vaulted ceilings and steel columns. It’s a truly inspiring space which I love working with and it’s proving to be a new hot choice with brides and grooms in the North since it launched as a wedding venue in October 2015.
For the concept, Claire was inspired by one of the Pantone colours for 2016, rose quartz, and the trend she had seen creeping through for geodes and crystals (particularly on cakes).
claire says: “I wanted to put together a shoot using real rose quartz. The obvious way to go would have been a hippy/boho look but Natasha and I felt that didn’t really fit the typical ‘Arches couple’ so we looked at how to make it more chic and romantic. I pulled together a colour scheme of pinks, greys and silvers and sourced a heap of rose quartz from the wonderful Natalie at Gallery 339 in Halifax. We asked some amazing suppliers to come on board with us and rather than dictating what we wanted, described our imaginary couple and scheme and asked them to ‘do their thing.’ This meant we had a really natural, un-contrived end result. Each element reflects not only the theme of the shoot but also who we are as individual suppliers. We didn’t name the shoot until afterwards when we saw the amazing video by Charlotte, which is so romantic and dreamy; the name ‘Blushing Romance’ was thrown in the pot by Tabby and we all loved it!”
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March 7th, 2016 | Julia Braime
Happy Monday! For this morning’s real wedding we’re exchanging the chilly north of the UK for sunnier climes as we jet off to Tuscany to relive John and Danielle’s big day.
Everything about this romantic destination wedding sounds right up our street, from the stunning setting to Danielle’s vintage dress and the traditional Italian food (especially the wedding cake).
Now sit back, relax and soak up those warm Italian rays!
With images by Valentina Weddings.
danielle says: We got engaged on New Year’s Eve in 2012. John and I are originally from Northern Ireland, but were living in Brisbane, Australia, at the time. John had booked us into our favourite restaurant for New Year’s Eve. There was a big firework display down by the river, so after our meal we made our way down there before midnight. I had just bought new shoes and my feet were hurting so I sat down and John kept asking me to stand up. The countdown to the New Year began 3-2-1, I turned to give John a kiss and there he sat with my ring. It was so romantic!
Our wedding was on the 9th September 2015 at the cathedral of Cortona in Tuscany. We spent the week with family and friends at Villa Baroncino, where we also had our wedding reception. We found Romantic Italian Weddings online, and we instantly fell in love. The villa was built in the 18th century and lies in the hills on the border between Tuscany and Umbria. The villa itself is just breath-taking with amazing views over Lake Trasimeno. We knew it would be the perfect setting for our big day and we weren’t wrong.
We didn’t really have a theme, we just picked a colour scheme and incorporated things that we liked. We wanted an overall feel of elegance and romance, and to be honest the location and venue did most of the work.
We went with cream and a dark dusky pink colour scheme. I just loved the colours together as it gave us that rich, elegant feel that we were after.
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September 15th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – we love pink and we love pretty. It’s no surprise then that we fell head over heels for Sally and Liam’s wedding when it landed in our inbox.
This wedding is pretty through and through, from Sally’s stunning fishtail gown to the maids’ sweet pink dresses and those beautiful blooms.
The men at this wedding are also looking fab in their modern blue suits which complement the pink theme perfectly.
With images by Daniel Murrientes Photography.
sally says: We’d been together for almost ten years when we got engaged. We planned a weekend trip to Barcelona in September 2013 after a friend told us we should go. It had been booked for over a month but it was only a week or so before we were due to depart that Liam decided to propose. Unknown to us there was a street festival in the city and the night after he proposed there was a huge firework display on the beach that just finished off the city break perfectly.
Our wedding date was 17th July 2015. We picked it in the hope we may get a sunny day so we could have an outdoor drinks reception. Luckily when the day came, although a little windy, the sun was shining.
We got married at St John’s Church, Hindley Green. This has been my mum’s local church for more than 20 years. When we got engaged we weren’t sure where to get married but then my mum said that she had always pictured that I would get married in St John’s Church – so we did.
The wedding breakfast and evening reception was then held at Stanley House and Spa, Mellor, Lancashire. They had everything covered and wedding coordinator there, Joy Parker, was a credit to the hotel. We had a sheet with a long list of questions prepared but we didn’t need to ask a single one – she answered everything. The venue is designed mainly for weddings and it shows. After viewing Stanley House our search came to a halt as it we knew it was the one.
We wanted the day to have a simple theme with a vintage/rustic feel and thought along the lines that less is more.
I’ve always loved pink so there was no other colour I was going to have on my wedding day. The bridesmaids wore pale pink dresses and the flowers were shades of pink, peach and creams. The groomsmen wore blue suits which contrasted great with the pink bridesmaid dresses.
When it came to the dress, I picked the 1551 style from Mikaella Bridal, a Canadian designer. I tried on a few dresses in different styles but as soon as I tried on this dress both my mum and I knew it the right one. I didn’t buy it straight away though. Me and mum went back again a few weeks later to try it on again and ensure it was definitely the one.
Liam wore a blue Lambretta suit which we purchased from Slaters in Bolton. His best man, ushers and the father of the groom all wore the same suit, teamed with a navy blue dickie bow.
Initially the bridesmaids had each picked their own style dress from a range with each style to be ordered in the same colour. Unfortunately when they arrived, two of the four bridesmaid dresses were missing. We were told replacements would take three weeks however, they took eight and when they did arrive they were in completely the wrong colour.
All four dresses had to be refunded and with just three weeks to go until the wedding, a last minute bridesmaid dress search began. After trying highstreets shops with no hope my mum and I headed out to bridal warehouses in Bolton, Stockport and Liverpool and eventually found four bridesmaid dresses in the right colour and all the correct sizes in Bolton. The staff at the wedding dress factory outlet in Bolton were amazing and so helpful. They went above and beyond to ensure we got sorted. Not only did the bridesmaids look stunning, but we ended up saving £100 per dress – every cloud!
Our wedding transport was provided by Satin Cars in Wigan. They were so professional and I loved the vintage wedding cars we picked. They transported the groom and ushers to the church prior to collecting myself, father, mum and bridesmaids.
Photographer Daniel Murrientes captured the day for us. We wanted a photographer that would catch the emotions throughout the day. My favourite photograph is the one of me, Liam and my dad at the aisle were I’m wiping away a tear (I was a blubbering wreck). This is photograph will now always take me back to that moment and how I was feeling.
Dan was also just an all-round great guy. Most of the time you didn’t even notice he was there. He seemed genuinely happy to be a part of the day and clearly enjoys his job. We loved having him there and I wouldn’t recommend anyone else!
On the day I carried a bouquet of roses in shades of pale pink, peach and cream. These were provided by Sara at Flowers with Passion. I chose Sara after meeting her at a wedding fair at Event City. We went to her show room not long after and she was so professional and did everything she could to ensure she understood our requirements and preferences. She had a large portfolio and has won lots of awards.
Her showroom was fab – she had a large book of cuttings of all different flowers, styles or colours that she looked through with us first of all in order to ensure she knew exactly what we wanted. She also had a number of flowers, vases etc. within our showroom and put together some mock centre pieces so we could have a taster of what they would look like on the day.
In addition to the centrepieces by Sara, we also had decorations provided by Creative Cover Hire. They provided us with full length white table cloths with ivory lace overlays, lime wash chivarli chairs and ceiling drapes with twinkle lights. Our name cards were luggage tags neatly tied to each chair, which were ordered from Etsy.
Normanddorothy provided our invitations and also the order of service. They are based in Manchester and were really helpful. Everything was perfect and they couldn’t have done anything more for us.
We did DIY favours. We ordered 100 small glass jars from eBay for just £35 and filled them with retro sweets. Some with white jazzies and some with dolly mixtures and covered them with different fabrics purchased from both eBay and Etsy and added twine, plus a thank you tag.
To save on costs our cake was from Marks & Spencer. We added some ‘just married’ bunting to the top tier, which we purchased from Etsy. We then placed the cake on an apple tier next to other cakes, sweets and treats. We had created a sweet table the night prior to the wedding which included popcorn, flying saucers, marshmallows, cakes and cookies.
We found our entertainment via the Function Central’s website. We chose the band Downtown Underground, who were fab! The band was led by Lil Vinny and they provided a mixture of motown funk and soul followed by a DJ set of pop music and indie classics. Our next to last song was my dad’s favourite song I’ve had the Time of My Life, with the final song by Oasis, Don’t Look Back in Anger.
We bought flip-flops for the evening as dancing shoes for guests whose heels might have started to rub to ensure there were no excuses for not being up on the dancefloor. For guests staying overnight we also provided a ‘hangover kit’, which we put in their room. We found these small personalised drawstring bags on eBay and filled them with sugary sweets, chewing gum, a vitamin c powder drink sachet and a sachet of coffee.
Looking back I have several favourite parts of the day: walking down the aisle to see Liam for the first time, the father of the bride and best man speeches (which were so thoughtful and funny) and the evening disco when the rest of our friends joined us and we could finally relax knowing everything had gone to plan and it had been a great day!
We headed straight on honeymoon after the wedding. We spent one night in Dublin, Ireland. We stayed at The Shelbourne Hotel and as it was our honeymoon were upgraded to a suite. Not only that, the taxi driver that we had flagged down at the airport to take us to the hotel, found out our married name was Murphy and agreed to take us back to the airport to catch our next flight the following day at no charge!
From Dublin we flew to San Francisco were we spent three nights – again, as honeymooners we were upgraded and it was a fab city to visit. We went to Alcatraz, saw the Golden Gate Bridge, and went to China Town, Fishermans Wharf, North Beach as well as a bike ride around San Francisco breweries!
After San Francisco it was time to relax and we flew to Mexico, Cancun were we spent ten nights. We were due to stay at the Moon Palace Hotel. However, due to the hotel being overbooked we were upgraded to Hotel Le Blanc a 5 Star hotel where we even had a butler during our stay. The hotel could not have been better. Here we visited the spa, went wine tasting and even swam with dolphins. Other than that we just enjoyed doing absolutely nothing for a few days!
When planning a wedding some things may not go to plan (just like our bridesmaid dresses) but my top tip to other Brides Up North would be not to let it stress you out. It will eventually become something you will laugh about and there is a solution to nearly any problem! Otherwise, just enjoy it – after all that planning it’s over in a few hours (although it feels like seconds).
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July 8th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Here at Brides Up North we do enjoy it when brides push the boundaries with their dress choices. Falling for something a little different, today’s bride Victoria chose a stunning soft golden gown instead of a traditional ivory or white design – and we’re sure you’ll all agree, she looks gorgeous!
The rest of the wedding party keep the style bar high with maids in pretty pale gowns with lace detailing and the groomsmen in smart navy suits with polka dot tie and pocket square.
From the beautiful blooms to the elegant cake the entire day comes together perfectly for the classic and sophisticated wedding that Victoria had dreamt of.
With images by Cahill Photography.
victoria says: We got engaged in London over August bank holiday weekend in 2013. We had booked a weekend away and were staying at the Royal Horseguards Hotel. We always try to go to a Michelin starred restaurant when we go away so Neil had booked a meal at a surprise location. On our way out we had a walk through Whitehall Gardens just in front of our hotel. It was such a pretty little garden with a really old tree in the centre which we had seen through our hotel window. We stopped by it and Neil said something along the lines of ‘I don’t want to embarrass you but….’ Then got down on one knee and pulled out a little blue Tiffany & Co bag from his suit pocket and asked me to marry him. I was so shocked and in a complete daze, I really wasn’t expecting it. Of course I said “yes”. We celebrated our engagement at Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley.
Our wedding day was 3rd April 2015. We had no specific date in mind to get married, we had talked about a bank holiday weekend during the early stages of planning and it just so happened our chosen venue – West Tower Country House Hotel in Aughton, Lancashire – had Good Friday available.
I had my heart set on West Tower from the first time I saw it. A friend of a friend was a bridesmaid at West Tower a few years ago and upon seeing the pictures I fell in love with it! We did a little bit of research online and narrowed our choices down to a handful we wanted to view in person. West Tower for us just blew the rest out of the water, it was everything I had ever dreamed of and more.
We didn’t really have a specific theme for our wedding day, we just want it to have a classic and sophisticated look to the day to fit in with the venue.
Our colour scheme was vintage/soft pinks, cream and gold. I wanted to have soft colours for a spring wedding and I had always liked the idea of vintage pinks and the colours worked perfectly with the venue.
My dress was from designer Stella York. I bought from Bridalwear by Emma Louise in Bolton. I had seen the dress at a wedding fair at the Emirates Stadium displayed by a bridal wear shop based in Chester and I fell in love with it. I did some research into North West stockists of Stella York dresses and Bridalwear by Emma Louise was the only one. I contacted the store and from day one Emma was so helpful. She didn’t stock this particular dress but ordered in a sample for me to try on. I fell in love as soon as I put it on, it was so different to anything I had tried on previously. The colour, the lace, the detail, everything was perfect! It had to be ‘the one’.
Neil wore a dark navy blue three piece suit from Whitfield & Ward in Wilmslow with a polka dot tie and pocket square. He also wore a bow waistcoat with a pocket watch to make him stand out from the other groomsmen who had classic four button waistcoats with the same time and pocket square.
Our photographer was Martin Cahill of Cahill Photography. We would most definitely recommend Martin to other couples as he was great from start to finish. The pictures say it all, we are so amazed by them and they will bring us happy memories for the rest of our lives.
The majority of our flowers were silk with a few fresh ones here and there. Neil’s mum did all our arrangements throughout the venue and our bouquets. My flowers were hand tied, long stemmed cream silk roses bound with lace.
The chair covers, aisle runner, lanterns, pillars and swagging throughout the venue were provided by Add A Little Sparkle.
All our stationary, from invites to table names were handmade by me. I also handmade all of the pearl and crystal napkin rings for the wedding breakfast which doubled up as name cards.
We gave our guest favours of Charbonnel et Walker milk chocolate truffles which came in a white boxes edged in gold, which tied in perfectly with our theme. We had lots of ideas for favours but in the end went with simple and classic.
Our cake was made by Taylormade Cakes by Tracy. We chose a five tier cake made up of fruit, lemon drizzle, chocolate fudge and carrot. We wanted a quite a large cake to make an impact in the room. It was a classic five tier design with some of the tiers edged in edible lace and decorated with handmade flowers which Tracy had replicated from the silk flowers used in our arrangements. We didn’t see the finished cake until the day. It was so perfect and just what we had imagined, I didn’t want to cut it. I would highly recommend Tracy to anyone.
For our wedding breakfast we had a starter of smoked chicken Caesar salad with herb croutes and bacon crisps followed by mains of Lancashire blade of beef slow cooked in a beer jus with wholegrain mustard mash, roasted shallots, button mushrooms, carrots, swede and bundles of green beans. To finish we had sticky toffee pudding with butterscotch sauce and ice cream (our favourite pudding). In the evening we had a hog roast.
As entertainment we hired a string quartet called The Dotted Crotchets to play for our guests’ arrival, my entrance, signing the register and for our drinks reception. The Dotted Crotchets were our choice, we first heard them play at the Trafford Centre and we fell in love with the idea. We hadn’t been to a wedding with a quartet before and thought it was a nice touch and a little different to anything we’ve experienced as guests at a wedding. We had full control over the song choices which enabled us to pick songs that meant something to us.
We hired Robin, the MD of Dancefloor Couture, as our DJ for our evening reception. He had played at a number of our friends’ weddings in previous years and was absolutely amazing. We knew we had to have him and didn’t want anyone else. He certainly didn’t disappoint!
We would definitely recommend our wedding venue to other couples. The staff made us feel comfortable from the first day we visited West Tower, they could not have been more helpful from start to finish. They made our vision of what we wanted our wedding day to be into a reality. It was so much more than we dreamed of. I could not fault them on anything they have a fabulous team and would highly recommend them as a wedding venue.
I enjoyed every single minute of our wedding day, it was such an amazing day and one I will never forget. For me there were a couple of standout points; the moment my bridesmaid and my dad saw me in my dress for the very first time. I had concealed everything about my dress from everyone other than my mum until I was dressed on the day. It was such an overwhelming feeling to see their faces when they finally saw it. It was definitely tears all round moment. Another special moment was when I saw Neil waiting for me at the end of the aisle and taking our vows.
For our honeymoon we went to Hong Kong for four nights then onto Koh Samui, Thailand, for six months and then Singapore for six nights. We wanted to have a long holiday as we normally only do short breaks away, so it was nice to enjoy almost three weeks away from everything together as a newly married couple.
Neil spent a few years as a child in Singapore and time as a teenager in Hong Kong as his dad worked away in these countries, so he was excited to go back and see what it was like now and also to show me where he lived and the things he experienced as a child. We chose Koh Samui as our ultimate luxury destination for rest and relaxation in the middle of our two city stays. We had our private villa with our own pool. It was paradise.
My top tips for other Brides Up North would be to enjoy every minute and try to take in as much as possible as the day just flies by so quickly. Also, take five minutes together to discuss the day so far.
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