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stately lace. a pretty wedding at Wynyard Hall – stacey & michael

September 16th, 2014 | Julia Braime

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I don’t know about you, but I’ve had a distinct “Tuesday feeling” for much of this morning (the direct opposite of the Friday feeling, which is far nicer).  I’m not sure if it’s a come down from the heady mix of industry and bridal events, high heels and glitter whirlwind that I’ve been spinning around in for the past week or so, but today’s huge to-do list of deathly dull admin left me feeling meh.

That’s until I started putting today’s real wedding feature together.

Stacey & Michael’s beautiful celebration at North East landmark venue Wynyard Hall reminded me exactly why I love this job and that however many VAT returns I have to chew through, I wouldn’t swap it for the world.

Get ready to pretty up your Tuesday and get lost in lace, blooms and birdcage veils…

With images by Foster & Foster Photography.

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Stacey says: We got engaged in October 2012. I was meant to have some annual leave from work, but had been very busy at work and consequently had cancelled my holidays.  Unknown to me, Michael had planned a couple of days away.  I phoned him from a work to let him know and when I got home from work, I changed into my pyjamas and began to prepare dinner.  He nipped upstairs and reappeared in our sitting room on one knee and proposed.

He said that he did it because now he was uncertain as to when we could go away he couldn’t wait!

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We were married on 8 March 2014. We knew we did not want a long engagement and 16 to 18 months felt about right.

I didn’t want a typical summer wedding as I envisaged the bridesmaids wearing fur capes outside.  We plumped for early March as it was likely to be past the worst bits of winter (heavy snow) but still chilly.

We chose Wynyard Hall, Teeside as our venue. We knew we wanted to get married in the North East as this is where most of our friends and family are.  We also knew we wanted an old venue as this suits our taste. We visited lots of venues, but when we drove up to Wynyard we were blown away by the building and its grounds.  When we went inside and seen the amazing stain glass ceiling with grand piano below, I was sold.

When shown around, we liked that we could use three different rooms through the various stages of the day and have our own bar area.  The terrace on the right was exclusively ours and allowed our guests privacy. In addition Wynyard had amazing bedrooms to accommodate our immediate family and friends, whilst being near enough to other hotels for other guests. It is an incredible venue, with lots of places for amazing photographs as well as creating the perfect atmosphere.

The team at Wynyard were very helpful and friendly and we knew we’d be in good hands on the day. Chris, our master of ceremonies, kept everything on track and did an amazing job.  Maggie our wedding coordinator was very attentive, answered all my queries well and efficiently and everything went smoothly on the day.

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Given the venue, I chose lace and, in hindsight, a vintage theme. The boys’ ties were a soft sage green and the bridesmaids wore nude.  The flowers then picked up on these colours with ivories and soft peach. I wanted to go for pale colours and tie everything into the lace that I had chosen for the tables.

I wore a fishtail lace Pronovias dress in an off white colour (Diago).  I bought it from Mia Sposa in Newcastle.  I knew that my preference was for a dress with straps/sleeves and no “bling”. When I tried this dress on, the way it moved made me feel amazing and the lace detail was spectacular.  Every dress I tried on after it I kept comparing to this one.

What Katy Did Next made me an amazing bespoke birdcage veil. It had a large ivory flower with pearl centre and jewelled leaves on either side.  The small veil was then detachable after the ceremony.  Her expertise and skill was second to none, as was her service.  She also made me some heart shaped shoe clips in ivory so that my shoes were unique!

Michael and the rest of the bridal party wore a mid grey three piece suit hired from Mia Sposa. We bought white shirts from TM Lewin and bought the ties with matching pocket squares from an online retailer.

I had the bridesmaid dresses made to measure by Eve and Adam in Newcastle.  They were nude coloured, sleeveless maxi dresses made to my specification. I chose to do this as I had two adult bridesmaids and two children (13 and 9) so it was difficult to find an off the shelf style to suit all.  I also wanted a dress they could easily use again.

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I had a bouquet of white lilac, champagne, soft peach and ivory roses and ivory peonies.

Katherine’s Florists in Newcastle provided these and they were amazing.  Helen at Katherine’s really understood my vision and worked with me to achieve the look I wanted.  She understood that I wanted to use fresh flowers but peonies were out of season at this time so she sourced high quality silk ones which you would not have known were silk when in the arrangement.

The bridesmaids carried very similar bouquets, with more soft peach shades and slightly smaller.

All of the groomsmen had button holes of champagne roses, along with Michael’s grandparents and mum.  My mum had a pearl wrist corsage with a champagne rose which was beautiful.

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We cannot praise Sarah and Mark enough for the huge part they played in our wedding day.   We were recommended to use Foster and Foster Photography by several friends and from the minute we contacted them for a quote the service we received was exceptional!

They met with us prior to the wedding to understand the approach we wanted for our photos, get a feel for our wedding and just get to know us in general.  They guided us on the optimal way of getting the crucial group shots we wanted whilst also allowing us to spend time with our guests.

On the day they were very much in the background, but still managed to capture amazing images!  They made us feel very relaxed throughout the day.   Michael in particular was nervous about being put into staged shots and feeling uncomfortable, but Sarah and Mark really made us feel at ease. They were brilliant at taking the group shots we wanted without being intrusive into the natural flow of the day.

The finished product was beyond our expectations and the follow up service has been exceptional!  They sent us a small sample of their shots the day after our wedding which was amazing as we were jetting off on honeymoon.  They then quickly produced a slideshow to send to our friends.  All of our friends and family adore the images and commented on how well executed the photography was on the day.

We also opted to have an album and they worked with us to include all of our favourite pictures.  More importantly they used their expertise to produce a professional finish which flowed well and captured all elements of the day.  They also helped us to get some extra shots printed for our family.  Small things like arranging specific times to deliver our disk of photos and album (to ensure we would receive them quickly and in perfect condition) really added to the already exceptional service.

I would not think twice about recommending Sarah and Mark as any couple’s wedding photographer.  The service was faultless and they are a lovely couple who work incredibly well together.  We are very lucky to have such amazing pictures from our special day!

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We did not want people to sit on certain sides in the ceremony so had a personalised framed picture made saying “Today two families become one, choose a seat not a side”. I reserved the first two rows of the ceremony room for immediate family, bridesmaids and groomsmen and had names badges made which I used as place names in the ceremony room.

Down the aisle we sprinkled petals and had white lanterns with big candles in them which looked amazing.

In the room where we were married we had to two tall slim vases with large ivory hydrangeas.  These were moved to our wedding breakfast room after the ceremony. Each table had a centre piece with tall vases containing a combination of the bouquets flowers with some ivory hydrangeas.

The top table had several small vases and jars dotted along the table with one or two of the bouquet flowers picked out.  There were then five circular vases into which my bouquet and the bridesmaids’ bouquets were dropped before the wedding breakfast. These were all supplied by Katherine’s Florists.

In addition, as part of our wedding package, Wynyard supplied a floral pedestal display and a floral spray for the registrar table in ivory colours.

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I made some vintage style ladders for the table plan which were very unique and stood out next to the piano.  We also had a table of family wedding photos next to the piano, which was brilliant as some people had passed away and it was a way to recognise them.

I also had made some extra frames with M&S in as well as some Mr and Mrs signs.  One of my bridesmaid’s bought us a Mr and Mrs Hall sign for the top table which finished it off perfectly!  She gave it to me the night before which made it an extra surprise!

I hired Posh Chair Covers and Bows to do the lace bows and hoods on the chairs as well as lace runners down the tables which fitted perfectly with the theme!

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The cake was one of my favourite things! It was off-white to match my dress and covered in flowers in pale green, peach and ivory to match my colour theme.  They cascaded down the cake and were more closely gathered near the bottom.

The bottom layer was fruit cake made by Michael’s brother (and the best man) who is a chef. There were then two layers of chocolate cake and one of vanilla. It was made by a family friend, Sue Hall. We also had a huge stack of cupcakes to match the main cake as cupcakes are a favourite of mine!

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For the wedding ceremony and drinks reception we had a piano player Mark Deeks of Music Newcastle.  We knew we wanted to use the grand piano in the main hallway where guests would be chatting.  It was the perfect accompaniment to our ceremony and Mark provided an excellent bespoke service!  He took requests on the day which our guests really enjoyed!

On the evening we had a local band, The Fontains.  They were better than we could ever have hoped!  They performed our first dance song “Read My Mind” by The Killers and the arrangement was fantastic!  The atmosphere they created was beyond what we could have hoped for!

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My favourite part was walking out of the wedding ceremony to the drinks reception because I was officially married to Michael, everything looked perfect and everyone seemed to be having a brilliant time.

I felt I could relax as everything had come together as planned!

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For our honeymoon, we went to Barbados for two weeks.  The first week we spent on the west coast near Holtown self catering and the second on the south east coast near St Lawrence Gap.

The weather was perfect for us as it was hot with a breeze.  We explored the island in the first week, visiting various places by bus and foot.  This included going on a catamaran cruise and Landrover off-road island tour.

The second week was absolute luxury in an all inclusive Sandals resort which was amazing and very relaxing after the hectic wedding build up!

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One of the last things we booked was a wedding videographer, Ben at HNE Media.  It was one of the best decisions we made as it allowed us to relive the day and listen to the speeches again.  Ben was brilliant and the final product was perfect!

As my top tip for other Brides Up North I would definitely recommend splashing out on a videographer.

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Within These Ancient Walls: A Real Wedding In The North East – Sarah & Sam

November 11th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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A Wedding at Durham Castle by Phil Smith Photography

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What’s better than a lazy Sunday with a huge Sunday dinner?

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A lazy Sunday with a huge Sunday dinner and a beautiful Real Wedding to ogle, that’s what.  Today’s sun kissed celebration was sent to me by real bride Sarah and Brides Up North Super Showcase exhibitor Phil Smith Photography, and takes place in my home town of Durham City and at the church down the road from my parents’ house!  So, thank you Sarah and Sam for sharing your day with us and also for sending me a little piece of home. 

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And what’s better than that?

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Sarah says:  We got engaged on Christmas morning 2010 and the engagement ring was in my Christmas stocking!  We were married on 8th September 2012 at St Laurence Church in Pittington – the village where I grew up. The reception was at Durham Castle.  Durham Castle was Sam’s college whilst at Durham University and where he lived when we were dating.

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I wanted the wedding to be quite informal and vintage but we also have rabbits and had rabbit themed invites, favours and table names!  I chose purple as our key accent colour. 

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My dress was an Ellis Bridals dress from Elizabeth of York, in York city centre.  The bridesmaids were in purple dresses sourced from etsy. They were made to measure by Ananya who has an etsy shop.

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I had a bunch of English summer garden inspired flowers, my bridesmaids had gypsophilia and lavender. My florist was Robyn Trainer of Floral Footsteps.

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Actually getting married was the best part of the day, then seeing family and enjoying the reception and disco were all brilliant too!

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We travelled in a super cool was a red vintage jaguar from Martin Devlin – it matched my shoes!

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We had an afternoon tea instead of a traditional wedding breakfast. We sourced vintage small plates for guests to use for the afternoon tea.  Posh chair Covers & Bows supplied our chair covers.

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My mum made a three layer cake, two sponge and one fruit layer with miniature knitted bunnies to top the cake also knitted by my mum.  Our place settings and favours were hand knitted rabbits with guests names around their necks.

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After the wedding we travelled around the Dordogne in France enjoying good food and good wine.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to make sure you have a good photographer as the day goes by so quickly but you will have the photos to cherish for years to come. We are really pleased with our photos – thanks Phil!

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Congratulations Sarah & Sam!

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Get in touch to see your own real wedding featured on Brides Up North.  Click here to find out how. 

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  – Images © 2012 Phil Smith Photography

Phil Smith Photography is a Brides Up North Exhibitor, but 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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Fit For A Princess! A Real Wedding In The North East – Kirsty & Christopher

June 30th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Welcome to Saturday my lovelies!  I can bet that a few of you will be walking that aisle today, and if you are I wish you all the luck and happiness in the World.  Remember to enjoy it, take some time to enjoy a quiet moment with your new husband and work that gown, girl!

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Maybe, like me, your day won’t be spent so glamorously – and perhaps you’ll be catching up on some wedmin.  Watch out for a new series of posts coming soon to the wedding blog designed to help you wade through all that necessary wedmin with the minimum of fuss – with tips from brides who have been there plus some super slick industry professionals.

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For now though, it’s all about the pretty, as Brides Up North reader Kirsty celebrates her fairytale wedding, with images by Dirk Van Der Werff

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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Kirsty says: We got engaged on 25th September 2010. Chris took me to London for the weekend. On the Friday he took me to the champagne bar Vertigo 42. He had a table reserved overlooking the city and proposed with a beautiful princess cut diamond ring!

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF   PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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We were married on Easter Monday – 9th April 2012 at Wynyard Hall.  Christopher’s mum and I went to look at a few venues together (Chris used to work aboard and he told me wherever I loved he would love too). When we walked into Wynyard Hall we both knew this was the one even before we had looked around. I just got a feeling that this was where I should get married. I took Chris when he came home and he loved it too.

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We went for a “Vintage Fairytale” theme, with a peaches and cream colour scheme.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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I loved getting ready with my seven bridesmaids, mum and flower girl on the morning of the wedding, all in our pink dressing gowns sipping on champagne getting our hair and makeup done by La Belle Vous. 

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF   PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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I chose a vintage lace backless dress by Jasmine Bridal Couture from Miranda Marie Bridal Boutique in Yarm. I also had a vintage two tier crystal embellished veil, Jenny Packham bracelet and Jenny Packham headpiece.  I carried a hand tied bouquet of white peonies by Wild & Wonderful

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My bridesmaids wore custom made dresses from Miranda Marie Bridal Boutique Yarm also designed by Jasmine Bridal. They were strapless, silk dresses in peach. They had cream satin shoes, peach and gold bracelets, gold and pearl earrings and real flowers in their hair.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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My father and I travelled by horse and carriage to the ceremony, whilst my bridesmaids, flower girl and mother of the bride went ahead in a vintage Rolls Royce from G W Holmes & Son.  Our wedding guests travelled by vintage red bus.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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My favourite moment was waiting outside the mirror room with my Dad and him telling me he loved me. Then the doors opening and seeing Chris stood at the bottom of the aisle. I will never forget that moment, he looked so gorgeous. We both couldn’t stop smiling at each other.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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We added personal touched with a vintage suitcase table plan, invitations, table name cards, top table lettering, wedding programmes and favours – all handmade by me.  We served our favourite drinks –

cosmopolitans and mojitos – during the reception.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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We chose cupcakes and top tier cake shaped like a vintage birdcage from The Ivory Cake Company. Each cupcake had a different vintage design and were different flavours.

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We had a lot of music on the day to add atmosphere. The Minerva Ensemble string trio played through the wedding and champagne reception, Val Boyers sung during the wedding breakfast and Jeff Dingle and the Moonswing Trio and the Ultimate Wedding DJ provided evening entertainment.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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During the wedding breakfast, Val Boyers was singing Song Bird by Eva Cassidy and I just started crying tears of joy. I looked around the room, saw how beautiful everything looked and how happy all our guests looked and I just knew I was having the perfect day.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF   PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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Each guest received a chocolate lolly favour by Maple Mollys, and everyone took their turn in the fun photo booth from Picture Blast.

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The room looked beautiful with vintage style table dressing from Posh Chair Covers & Bows

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF   PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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We went to Venice for four days straight after the wedding and stayed at the Hilton. We are going on our honeymoon in July for three weeks visiting Las Vegas staying at the Venetian, then travelling to Hawaii and then LA. We are both very excited and are wishing the days away till we go.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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My top tips for other Brides Up North would be to enjoy the build up as it’s such a special time.  Pick your photographer carefully – a good one will help make you feel so special (like Dirk!) and try and do some things yourself – my guests loved all the personal touches.

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PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF   PHOTOGRAPH: www.AQphotos.com / DIRK VAN DER WERFF

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Congratulations Kirsty & Christopher!

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Are you newly wed? Get in touch to share your Real Wedding memories on the wedding blog.

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  – Images © 2012 Dirk Van Der Werff

Dirk Van Der Werff is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but 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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Lace & Lilies: A Real Wedding In The North East – Leanne & Chris

January 16th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Welcoming in a frosty week on the wedding blog with a seasonal winter wonderland wedding in the North East, sent to me by my friend  – the fabulous – Helen Russell Photography.  With lace, lilies and just the right amount of sparkle, this Real Wedding is a whole lot of lovely!

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Over to Leanne:   We got engaged in New York in November 2010. It was all very romantic in front of a burning log fire with rose petals and champagne. Chris had reserved an old library type room with very high ceilings and character and had arranged for champagne and flowers to be placed in front of the burning fire and then when we arrived he sat me down and popped the question!

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We were married on 16 December 2011 at St Wilfrids RC Church in Bishop Auckland for the service and then Beamish Hall for our reception.  We both love the building and grounds at Beamish Hall as it has a lovely feel to it. We also think the rooms at Beamish are very warm and intimate with perfect scenery.  We went for a Christmas winter wonderland vibe with lots of white, silver and crystals, chair covers by Posh Chair Covers & Bows, plus plenty of candles and fairy lights. 

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I chose a vintage style dress by the amazing Ian Stuart.  To compliment this, my chief bridesmaid wore a long gun metal grey dress and the youngest bridesmaid wore an ivory flower girl’s dress. Both bridesmaids had grey fur shrugs and vintage brooches too.  I carried a simple Lily of The Valley bouquet by The Funky Flower Company

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We went all out and chose a Sex and the City 2 themed cake which consisted of three tiers with Swarovski Crystals in between!  So fabulous!  Our favours were donations to Cancer Research and cake pops by the brilliant Popcake Kitchen

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In the evening, we were entertained by a live band, The Monologues and then The Mobile DJ Company.  Paul Lytton kept us all guessing with his amazing magic tricks!  

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After the wedding we went to a castle for a couple of days on a “mini moon” however we are hoping to go somewhere hot and exotic in the next few months – destination undecided!

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to enjoy every minute and absorb it all in as it goes very quickly. Try to just relax and enjoy the whole experience as its magical!

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Congratulations Leanne & Chris!

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  – Images © 2012 Helen Russell Photography 

Helen Russell Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but 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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