August 27th, 2015 | Julia Braime
This is another one if those weddings that’s so pretty we actually gasped when we first saw the images.
We adore Donna’s choice of a delicate lace Claire Pettibone dress, which complements her soft colour scheme of pale cornflower blue and antique pink to a tee.
Keeping things simple, Donna and Ric didn’t go OTT with their décor, instead opting for dreamy floral arrangements to bring the colour and leaving the rest of the detail to the venue. For us, this is pure perfection!
With images by Hayley Baxter Photography.
donna says: We got engaged in May 2014 on our hotel balcony in Montmartre, Paris. Ric was hoping to pop the question in Jardins du Luxembourg earlier in the day during a picnic, but as it was a sunny bank holiday Sunday in Paris, there were crowds and never quite the right moment! We celebrated on Monday with a gastro lunch on Bateaux Parisiens cruise on the Seine, which was fantastic.
We set the date for 18th July 2015, hoping for a sunny summer’s day and our chosen venue, Samlesbury Hall in Lancashire, only had two Saturday dates left in 2015.
We chose the venue as we wanted a civil ceremony, and also somewhere with history and where we could show our family in years to come. As a historic home with bags of character and a really welcoming team, we knew Samlesbury was for us. The Whittaker Room where we were married was the old family chapel of the family that used to live there, so felt so special and unique.
We didn’t want a clear theme as such. However, soon into planning our marriage, we tended to like vintage glamour, antique type styles. We also wanted to reflect the summer and a relaxed, elegant style. We also noticed a ‘scallop’ theme emerging in our choices – our stationery pattern, the lace in my dress and my jewellery.
Our colour scheme was pale cornflower blue (Dessy – Larkspur) and pale antique pink. We both love cornflower, and it fitted perfectly against the backdrop of Samlesbury’s black and white buildings and green lawns.
A wonderful friend of ours Nikki Graeme is director of The White Closet in West Didsbury, and it was top of my list for dress shopping! I did look at a number of different designs before making my choice. The new gown Estelle in Claire Pettibone’s Romantique collection just felt right as soon as I tried it on. I wanted something that was light and comfortable whilst also elegant with a touch of glamour. When I tried it on Sweet Disposition came on the radio and I found myself twirling around in the dressing room, so I knew it was the one!
My two bridesmaids Imogen and Jen wore knee length Dessy dresses in Larkspur and our flower girls wore ivory satin dresses with netted skirts with Dessy accessories to match the older bridesmaids.
Our hair and makeup artists was Nathan Hynes. We couldn’t recommend him enough, such a lovely friendly guy and really creative and talented with hair and makeup using Charlotte Tilbury products.
On the day of the wedding, my mum, two bridesmaids and I travelled in a silver Bentley Flying Spur from David Anthony Chauffeur Services in Manchester. They were wonderful and incredibly reliable and professional.
Hayley Baxter was our photographer and she was truly exceptional. From the moment we met Hayley on our pre-wedding shoot at Dunham Massey, we felt totally relaxed in her company, and really confident in her professionalism and technical skills.
On the big day Hayley arrived at our home whilst we were having hair and make-up done, she subtly starting capturing special moments, and felt like part of the day immediately. Hayley was so discreet, yet in these quiet moments was brilliantly capturing the details of the day. Hayley has a real knack of making sure the photographs progress swiftly, whilst being charming and friendly and put all our family and friends at ease. We wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her.
I had a loose bouquet of summer flowers, including peonies and roses. I cried when I saw them, they were so beautiful! We also had a flower arch over the doorway at Samlesbury Hall which looked beautiful too. The Flower Lounge provided these as well as our floral decorations for the reception. We had silver candelabras with the same theme of peonies and roses on each of our top tables.
We used Amanda at Love Invited, who was wonderful, for all our stationery using her ‘Hollywood Glamour’ designs. She was thoroughly professional and the quality of her stationery was fantastic.
To continue our Parisian theme we gave our guests favours of colourful sweet Macaroons from Sam Joseph chocolatiers in Altrincham Market. They are a local supplier who we had seen at our local market and their macaroons were exquisite!
For our wedding cake, we decided to go for a simple iced sponge cake with three tiers of different flavours: orange and raspberry, blueberry and walnut, and lemon on top. This again was from a local supplier who we have tried and tested in the past from visits to The White Closet – The Dish Ran Away with the Spoon on Burton Road. We chose a ‘The Smiths’ cake topper from Not on the High Street for a bit of fun.
There was plenty of choice on the wedding breakfast menu from Samlesbury’s chef. At our tasting we loved the lamb, so this was an obvious choice for us. Starters and dessert were a bit more of a challenge, however we went for a summery Caprese salad with parma ham to start, and finished with our favourite – an unseasonal sticky toffee pudding!
Music was a really important element of the wedding to us and so we chose John Gilmore to play live Saxophone outside on the lawn during our canapés. We also chose songs during signing of the register and walking back down the aisle which were light hearted and set the mood of the day – happiness and celebrations.
Rick Cropper was our DJ for the evening entertainment. We met him back in September at Samlesbury Hall and were impressed by his friendly relaxed style. The dance floor was busy all night! We provided some fun kiddies packs for the little ones to keep them entertained too.
My favourite part of the day was saying our vows in front of family and friends and looking into Ric’s eyes – it was magical. For Ric it was (apparently) me walking down the aisle with my dad Peter! And the first dance, which was lots of fun and very improvised.
Following the wedding, we had a lovely relaxing minimoon in North Yorkshire, near Helmsley, in a little cottage. We are lucky enough to be visiting South Africa (Safari, Capetown and the Winelands) and Dubai next month for a longer break.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to remember that however challenging the planning might feel at times (when working long hours and decorating a new house, it can be tough) it will all be worth it the moment your day begins and all your hard work and vision pays off. You should relax and enjoy it – a few people commented that we both seemed very relaxed and involved in enjoying our day. That was absolutely the case and this was due to wonderful suppliers and time invested up front.
My other top tip would be to leave a couple of days before the wedding when you literally are all planned out and have time to relax. We finished all of the final details the weekend before so I had two days with my bridesmaids and my mum and had time to write cards, wrap presents and be pampered!
August 27th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
Here at Brides Up North we love to see couples’ cool and quirky wedding ideas play out in their imaginative themes, but we also feel you just can’t beat a simple & classic big day.
Bride Gillian was set on having the latter for her wedding to Ashley, which took place at the lovely Beeston Manor in Preston, a venue the couple were set on from day one.
With elegance in abundance, everything about this wedding fits in with Gillian’s wishes for pretty and romantic, from her beautiful slim fit dress, to the simple styling and the bridesmaids’ dreamy pastel gowns.
With images by Arusha Images Photography.
gillian says: We got engaged in Egypt. We were completing our PADI diving course whilst on holiday and Ashley decided our first open water dive was the best time to propose. He popped out a ring on the bottom of the red sea. I was in total shock! The whole dive crew were in on it and everyone cheered when we got back to the boat. It was all very thoughtful and romantic!
Our wedding date was 6th June 2015. We had our hearts set on Beeston Manor in Preston, as our venue and so waited two years for a Saturday in spring! We had viewed the venue back in in May 2013 and instantly loved it, both of us knew that was where we wanted to get married.
We didn’t have a theme as such, I just wanted a pretty, romantic and classic wedding. Our colour scheme was pink, ivory and pearls. It was a perfect, simple and pretty wedding.
I chose a dress from Dreamcatcher in Kirkham. I actually bought a strapless dress and had a bespoke jacket made to go out the top. I chose a fairly simple lace dress – I wanted something stylish and classic, but not over the top. I felt the final dress was very me! On the wedding day Be Beautiful did my hair. They were amazing and put up with my fussing.
Ashley wore a blue three piece suit from Ted Baker and the groomsmen all wore navy suits from Next.
Our bridesmaids’ pale pink dresses were all from ASOS.
Ashley and I bought our wedding rings from George Banks Jewellers. We decided this was an area to splash out on since we will wear them every day for the rest of our lives!
Arusha Images Photography photographed our wedding day. We would totally recommend her to other brides and grooms. Her photographs are very romantic and utterly beautiful. They are exactly what we wanted as a memory of our day!
Rachel at Sweet Peas Florist did all our wedding flowers, including my huge bouquet of beautiful blooms. I went to her with ideas and let her get creative with the final pieces. I was so impressed. She is extremely talented!
We use Add a Little Sparkle to decorate Beeston Manor to suit our chosen theming and colours. Using this company totally made our venue. Everything looked stunning!
As favours gave out sparklers to our guests and at 10pm everyone got together for a photo. The idea was more successful than the reality!
We had a three course sit down meal as our wedding breakfast. It was delicious! The wine was provided by Beeston and perfectly complemented the menu. For our wedding cake we had a three tiered simple floral design, which was from Simply Cupcakes.
To provide entertainment at the reception, we hired a three piece jazz band fronted by Willy Fluss. I can’t recommend them enough!
Following our wedding, we would certainly recommend Beeston Manor to other couples. The venue is so beautiful and everyone there was so lovely to us and our guests! We had the perfect day.
Looking back we would say the reception was our favourite part of the day – we loved that everyone could let their hair down and dance!
After the wedding we went on honeymoon to Miami. We have a nine-month-old so we decided this was a good place for a family trip. We are due to go to Thailand in January for our official honeymoon and can’t wait!
My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to check in with your other half regularly throughout the day! Everyone wants to speak to you on your wedding day and before you know it you find it’s been ages since you last checked in with each other. We found it best to greet and thank all our guests together so then we could enjoy the rest of the evening on the dance floor!
August 24th, 2015 | Julia Braime
Brides Up North readers Jessica and Tim are about to tie the knot this Bank Holiday weekend, so we thought it was only right that they share their love story and colourful engagement shoot images with us on the pages of their favourite wedding blog. Over to the bride to be… (and congratulations from Team Brides Up North!)
With images by Steve Bridgwood Photography.
jessica says: We got engaged in June 2014, it was my first weekend home after knee surgery and Tim brought me breakfast in bed. On the plate he has spelt out “Will you marry me?” in alphabetti spaghetti and it was a fantastic surprise to come home to.
We are getting married on 30th August this year at Heaton House Farm.
We first met in our local pub in 2005, I was wearing a Ramones T shirt and Tim (who likes the Ramones) came up to me and started talking about them and what my favourite album was. I wasn’t able to answer as I didn’t really know a lot about them and we had a joke about it and hit it off from there.
On our first date we went to cinema, it didn’t start particularly well as we nearly crashed on the way there. Then we went to see a Jim Carey film and it was only after I told Tim that he (Jim Carey, not Tim) really annoys me. So it wasn’t an ideal start.
We never really had that defining “this is it” moment, but the more time we were with one another the more we knew something special was there and wanted to be with each other.
I love all of the sweet little things Tim does for me. I love how he has always been there for me no matter what. I love how we love each other after being together for almost a decade and our love is getting stronger.
tim says: What I love most about Jess is how kind and conscientious she is to others, which makes me think what a great mother she will be.
Tim’s annoying little habit is that he is too clean and always tidying up. Mine is that I’m a bit messy, so our annoying little habits work well together.
Our greatest wish for married life is to carry on growing together and to continue enjoying all of life’s little adventures with one another… and to start a family.
We chose to have an engagement shoot as it was something different for us both and was a great way for us to get to know Steve better and how he works.
We had a great time on the engagement shoot with Steve in the Northern Quarter. He really made us feel a lot more relaxed for the big day as neither of us are big on having our photo taken, but now we’ve got a really good feel for it. The photographs are going to be used on the day for our memory board and we’re going to use them at home too.
We both have found Brides Up North really useful in planning our own wedding and it has helped us to channel our own ideas in how we want our wedding to look – and we’ll be back to share the results!
August 24th, 2015 | Julia Braime
The guest list for today’s wedding at The Samling doesn’t even reach double figures as Mia and Pete decided on a small and intimate wedding featuring spectacular views and first class food surrounded by just their very nearest and dearest.
Showing that size doesn’t mean everything, the day is brimming with class, elegance and smiles as all involved enjoy the relaxed and magical atmosphere by the side of Lake Windermere.
With images by James Tracey Photography.
mia says: We got engaged in January 2014 in the Lake District. Pete surprised me with a weekend away to Aphrodite’s near Bowness to celebrate our third year anniversary. We had just finished relaxing in the hot tub with a glass of champagne and I went into the bathroom to get changed. I came back out to Pete down on one knee holding out a ring! It was a complete surprise and I kept asking him over and over again whether he was being serious! In the end he said “So what do you think, then?” and of course, I said “yes”.
Our wedding was 20th June 2015. We chose that date as we wanted a summer wedding, the day before the longest day of the year being ideal. It also gave us enough time to save up for it!
We chose The Samling in the Lake District as our venue. We knew we wanted to get married in the Lake District as it was where we had spent our first weekend together as a couple and it was also where Pete proposed so the location had a lot of meaning. The Lake District also has absolutely stunning scenery making it a perfect setting for a wedding. As we were having a very small intimate wedding (just eight people including ourselves!) we wanted a venue that would complement this which The Samling did, given the exclusivity of the venue. We were also attracted to the Samling for its Michelin star menu, Pete and I being very much into our food. We went to visit The Samling and knew straight away it was where we wanted our wedding – it was the first and last place we visited when looking for a venue. After seeing the panoramic views of Lake Windermere, we knew we were making the right choice!
We didn’t have a theme for our wedding but wanted an intimate, understated affair which was very special at the same time. The venue where we had the wedding matched our styles and tastes exactly in that it is not stuffy and overly fussy but had luxurious and special features to it. The style of wedding we had allowed us to think of different ideas as went along while planning the wedding.
While we had a very small wedding, we’re also having a party later in the year to celebrate with all our friends and family.
We didn’t have a colour scheme as such but chose a lot of white and yellow as they both complement each other and are lovely, summery colours.
My dress was a gown by Sophia Tolli purchased from The Bridal Path in Altrincham. It was a fitted lace dress which was ivory and champagne coloured. It had a plunging v neckline and crystal beading scattered across the dress. It also had a sheer back bodice with crystal buttons cascading down the back and a long train. I felt the dress was very elegant and classic. I knew it was the right dress for me as soon as I tried it on!
On the wedding day I wore my dress with peep toe silver shoes by Jimmy Choo. I chose these shoes as they really fitted the style of my dress and I can wear them again. On my head I wore a Swarovski crystal encrusted head piece by Halo & Co, purchased from Liberty in Love. Rebecca Forshaw, a hair and makeup artist based in the North West, did my hair and makeup on the day. She did a fantastic job and I never imagined I could look so glamourous!
Pete wore a blue-grey, light woollen three piece suit. The cloth came from Scabal, and was ordered and tailored by Richard Smith Bespoke in Manchester city centre, who also provided the tie and pocket square. The pale blue, super slim-fitting stretch shirt came from Thomas Pink in Manchester, and the brown shoes were from Jeffrey West, also in Manchester.
For my flowers, I had a beautiful but simple shower bouquet made up of white orchids, with green foliage which was provided by Kerry at The Floristry in Kendal. Kerry also provided all our flowers for the day. We had had a mixture of white orchids, yellow flowers and green foliage to decorate the wedding reception. We had a large vase of flowers in the centre of the dinner table with smaller vases of flowers at the side of this. Kerry was fantastic and created everything we asked for.
Our wedding cake was a two tiered fruit cake with white icing which was decorated with pink flowers. It was from Marks & Spencer.
For the wedding breakfast we had a Michelin star taster menu created by Ian Swainson, head chef at the Samling. It was an absolutely unbelievable gastronomic experience! We had a wine pairing with each course as recommended by their sommelier.
We chose Maxine Molin, a harpist, to play during the ceremony and our champagne reception due to her excellent reputation. Also the harp sounds beautiful and fitted in with the understated and relaxed theme of our wedding.
We would definitely recommend our wedding venue. Not only was it spectacular and exclusive, the service we were provided with was second to none. All the staff ensured our whole day went seamlessly and they made us feel very relaxed. They were very open to what we required and went out of their way to provide it.
It really was the best day of my life so it’s difficult to pick a favourite part of the day! I would say one of the highlights however was relaxing in the outdoor hot tub in the evening after our meal overlooking the whole of Lake Windermere!
We aren’t going on honeymoon until October. We are going to South Africa and then on to Mauritius and we cannot wait! We’re spending a few nights in Cape Town, then on to the wine regions for plenty of wine tasting! We’re then ending the trip in Mauritius which will be completely relaxing.
My top tip to other Brides Up North would be don’t be scared of breaking with tradition. We had traditional but many untraditional elements to our wedding, for example, I walked into the wedding ceremony to the harpist playing Metallica! Tradition and convention also advocate a large, lavish wedding. Although these events can be fantastic, if an intimate event suits you then you should go for it as it is so personal and rewarding. Whatever you choose, make the most of all the attention being lavished on you for one day!
brides up north featured supplier, halo and co, james tracey photography, jeffrey west, jimmy choo, lake district wedding, liberty in love, marks and spencer, maxine molin, real wedding, rebecca forshaw, richard smith bespoke, scabal, Sophia Tolli, the bridal path, the floristry, the samling, thomas pink, uk wedding blog
August 19th, 2015 | Julia Braime
Though they didn’t marry in the capital, opting for a northern venue instead (yay!), today’s couple still gave a nod to the place bride Lucy is from by hiring some iconic transport.
A black cab and red double decker bus carried the bride, groom and their guests between venues providing as great talking point and turned out to be one of the most memorable parts of the day.
So it’s all aboard to Cheshire as we relive Lucy and Andy’s wonderful wedding.
lucy says: We got engaged in November 2013 in Mauritius. Andy informed me that he wasn’t feeling well while we were sat on the beach at night looking at the view so we sat down. Next minute he was down on one knee proposing.
Our wedding date was 29th May 2015. It was the closest we could get to the date that we first met – we met years before we got together but it took Andy a while to ask me out on a date.
We got married at Heaton House Farm in Cheshire. I’m from London and wanted something totally different to all the venues that I had seen down south. Heaton House Farm is in such a stunning location and the views are spectacular, whatever the weather!
We had a loose London theme for the day. We had a red London bus from Routemaster Buses to transport our guests from the church to the reception venue and Andy and I arrived in a black cab.
Navy, white and yellow was our chosen colour scheme. I originally wanted navy and white for pure elegance but someone pointed out to me that it might look a bit clinical and so we added in a vibrant yellow.
Andy’s outfit came from Whitfield and Ward. He wanted a waistcoat and to incorporate tweed and some navy. Craig at the shop helped him choose a great suit to complement. The groomsmen’s attire was also from Whitfield and Ward.
My bridesmaids wore Vivian Diamond dresses from the Dessy collection, which we got from 7th Heaven.
James Tracey was our photographer on the day and Daniel Lloyd was a second shooter. Booking the photographer was one of the first things we did after booking the church and the venue. James has the perfect personality; bubbly, relaxed and super organised. We would highly recommend him.
For my flowers I carried a rustic, tied bouquet and my bridesmaids carried identical arrangements. Laura from Green Earth Flowers seemed to really understand my vision and put it into practise when creating the bouquets.
Venue Perfections helped with the reception décor. We had personalised bunting hanging from the beams in the barn, navy taffeta bows on the chairs and yellow and navy ribbons wrapped around the napkins. To decorate, we also had sliced lemons in mini jars with assorted flowers as well as long stemmed flowers in the scheme colours in tall, elegant vases.
I had seen lots vintage letters lit with old bulbs in varying wedding magazines at shows and I decided we must have them at our wedding and that Heaton House Farm would be a great place to showcase them. We hired ‘Love’ letters from The Word is Love. They were hugely popular and lots of our guests commented on them.
Our favours were by Gemma at Pat-a-Bakes. We had white, navy and yellow decorated gingerbread love hearts wrapped up and tied with a bow.
Linda at Buttercup Cakes, Whaley Bridge, made our wedding cake. It was a four tiered design with sparkling sugar crystals and had navy ribbon tied around with a diamante broach clasp. It was lemon flavoured with vanilla filling – yummy!
DJ Krissy B provided the entertainment on the day. I love 80s and 90s music and had seen Krissy B play before. He appeared perfect for the wedding and he was!
We would definitely recommend Heaton House Farm to other couples. The entire events team are extremely organised and nothing is too much trouble. You are allocated a wedding coordinator and they ease any stress that you might be feeling. The venue also has stunning views, inside and out.
My favourite part of the day was being on the London bus on the way from the venue to Heaton House Farm. Sitting next to Andy, surrounded by friends and family travelling through all the little villages and taking it all in was priceless and a very precious moment for both of us.
Following the wedding we had a minimoon to Lake Garda. It was simply stunning. The weather and views were glorious. It was a very romantic area with lots of amazing activities on the lake. A perfect setting for our first week as Mr and Mrs. We sailed, rode bikes, went kayaking and sunbathed.
My top tip for other Brides Up North is to breath (remain calm) and be as well prepared as possible. That way the day should run smoothly. Be aware of your ‘countdown’ days in the run up to the wedding and allocate certain jobs to be done in certain months so that you feel a sense of achievement.
We would also suggest couples delay their big honeymoon until later in the year. Aware we might well feel deflated after our big day we took a minimoon following the wedding and have planned a ‘megamoon’ for October to extend the wedding feeling.
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