October 5th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
Soughton Hall – a stunning Georgian country house on the border of North Wales and Cheshire – is today’s enchanting backdrop to Ashleigh and Rhys’ special day in early August.
Opting for a classic white theme accentuated by beautiful cleans lines and lots of shimmering glass, the wedding is a blueprint for a truly timeless décor and look. And, unconventionally, the bride even wanted her bridesmaids dressed in white, but eventually settled on an Instagram-worthy pastel pink shade instead. Equally divine!
Along with some utterly beautiful outdoor pics – there are plenty of other pretty touches and moments to pore over; from the bride’s gorgeous calla lily bouquet and confetti balloons to the stunning four-tiered cake and shortbread biscuit favours.
So, as we gear up for the weekend ahead – which for us, and you lovely brides-to-be that join us, will include spectacular Luxury Wedding Shows at Saltmarshe Hall, East Yorkshire, and Capesthorne Hall, Cheshire – we’ll leave you in Ashleigh’s capable hands as she talks though all her wonderful wedding day highlights – enjoy!
With images by Samantha Kay Photography.
ashleigh says: We got engaged while in Liverpool. Rhys pretended we were going to meet friends for the evening but took me for a surprise meal at our favourite restaurant, The Art School. The ring was hidden in the starter board which featured a number of small boxes containing different foods. I opened the box with the ring and the next thing I knew, he was down on one knee! Awkwardly, I had just taken a very fishy mouthful of the starter so was reluctant to kiss him after saying yes! We then continued with the seven-course tasting menu and then headed to Alma de Cuba to dance the night away with my brand-new rock!
We got married on 4th August 2018. It was one of the Saturday summer dates Soughton Hall had available for 2018, and we were adamant that the wedding needed to take place in the summer holidays as we’re both teachers. If I’m honest, I also liked the even numbers; 04/08/18 has a nice ring to it!
We were married at Caldy Church about 200 metres from my mum and dad’s house, where I got ready on the morning of the wedding.
We had the wedding breakfast and evening do at Soughton Hall down the road from Rhys’ mum and dad in North Wales. Rhys worked there when he was younger and we had walked past several times walking his dog and always said we’d love to get married there. We didn’t even bother to go and view any other venues – we knew that was the one.
In terms of the styling of the wedding, I wanted clean lines and modern simplicity so there was a lot of glass: vases and circular glass plates with flowers underneath on the table. I tend to take the reins when it comes to interior, fashion and design so Rhys was happy to let me run with ideas.
As for the colour scheme – this was white, white, white – you can’t go wrong! Also, its timeless nature was important to me.
October 1st, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
After the wonderful summer we’ve had, it’s becoming a recurring theme to show you gorgeous cerulean skies and baking hot sunshine as par for the course in our real wedding features. Today’s wedding showcase is no exception, taking place on one of the hottest days of the year – more south of France than north of the UK! Despite the challenging heat, the bride, Rachael, looks radiant in her Amanda Wyatt gown, with its French Chantilly lace bodice, soft tulle A-line skirt and classic lace-up back, accessorised with a gorgeous red lip. Being an historian who especially loves the Georgian period, it’s no surprise she’s chosen a pair of heels with a Georgian sense of style to complete her look. We also love the white feather fan she uses to keep herself cool during the day – a good tip for any summer brides-to-be.
The theme of Rachael and Luke’s big day was travel and they did a sterling job of reflecting this in their choice of decorations. The world map table plan is particularly charming, and they’ve added little details throughout, like the globe that accompanies the rather regal-looking cake during the wedding breakfast.
It’s not always easy to dress a marquee as the all-white appearance can add a cool tone, but Rachael and Luke added a curtain of fairy lights behind the top table to warm up the scene and some on-trend love lights to add depth to the room. With beautiful white blooms and greenery aplenty, the effect is elegant and classic.
With images by Madison Picture.
rachael says: We got engaged while in Iceland. I had planned a trip there to celebrate Luke’s 30th birthday. Being a geographer, it was a place he had always wanted to go, and I was pleased with myself that I could make it happen. Therefore, being proposed to on the trip was the last thing I expected. On the third day of our trip, we spent the day visiting geysers, hot springs and lava fields. On our way back to the hotel, Luke suggested we visit one last waterfall. I was pretty exhausted, but Luke was insistent. The waterfall, Skógafoss, was breath-taking. Luke set up his camera on the tripod and suggested we jump in front of the waterfall in order to catch it on camera. I didn’t realise he was actually filming and, after we both jumped, he got down on one knee. Hilariously, it didn’t quite go to plan and Luke fell backwards almost into a running stream. As I tried to pull him up, he would not get off his knee. Being a joker, I thought he was pulling a prank, until I saw the ring. He asked me to marry him and, after saying yes, the rest was a bit of a blur. It was the best feeling ever. On our return leg of the journey, he had created a CD full of my favourite songs and those that meant so much to us both. We drove back feeling on top of the world.
We chose 27th July 2018 as our wedding date. Originally, I wanted to go for 27/7/2017. Being the seventh child of two parents who were also the seventh child in their family, the number is very lucky for me! However, living in Dubai, we felt it would be too soon to plan the wedding, so settled for 27/7/18.
We had our ceremony at St Mary’s Church, Whitewell. It was important to us both that we were married in a church and St Mary’s is beautiful. We met the most wonderful people every time we attended mass. Rev Veronica Green and Carolyn Wort did everything in their power to help us to get married there, despite us living in the UAE. Over the two years of planning, we built up a lovely friendship with them both and Veronica gave the most beautiful service. She helped to make me feel calm on the day and not only gave a beautiful sermon but also gave us such fantastic advice on the importance of marriage and the foundations of a successful partnership.
We had our reception at Iscoyd Park in Whitchurch, Shropshire. Being an historian, I always knew I wanted to get married at a Georgian wedding venue and Iscoyd was the 18th century venue I was looking for. Photographs really do not do the place justice. Arriving at Iscoyd for a viewing, I was almost in tears at the beauty of the venue. Not only did it have the charm of an 18th century building but the renovation by the Godsal family was breath-taking. Every room in the house was perfectly designed to reflect the history of Iscoyd whilst bringing it into the 21st century. The attention to detail was unreal and each aspect of the house was unique. We knew instantly we would want to have more than one night at Iscoyd, so we decided to book two so that our families could enjoy a little break away whilst getting to know each other fully the night before.
One of the most important reasons we also decided on Iscoyd Park was due to the staff. We were given such a warm welcome from Philip Godsal and, despite it being his family home, he was clear to us from the start that he wanted us to feel like Iscoyd Park was our home for those couple of days that we would be staying there. Every person we came into contact with at Iscoyd was fantastic. They were incredibly warm and welcoming and made us feel as though nothing was too much trouble for them. We would absolutely recommend Iscoyd Park to other brides and grooms. We both felt so sad when the experience came to an end and we had to leave Iscoyd and their wonderful staff. We hope to visit again in the future and envy those who have their wedding still to come.
In terms of a theme, we decided to go for a simple and classic style; as the venue itself is so stunning, we didn’t really need to make many additions and we didn’t want to detract from the beauty of the place. We opted for a travel theme as this is something that is important to both our lives. Each table was named after a place we had been together, and we used old-fashioned travel posters on each table to show this. I also filled the room with a variety of beautiful quotes written on the theme of love.
For the colour scheme, we decided to go for light blue/grey with simple white flowers throughout. I wanted something fresh and classic and something that would fit with the venue we had chosen.
September 28th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
We adore all the gorgeous weddings that we get to share with you here on Brides Up North, but today’s beauty has us doubly excited as the spectacular backdrop to the celebrations is a North Yorkshire venue that we’ve just added to our collection of Luxury Wedding Shows. Feast your eyes on The Yorkshire Wedding Barn, a beautifully polished rustic gem of a venue set in acres of rolling countryside with stunning ceremony and reception space, plus plentiful accommodation on site. Sound up your street? Then be sure to join us the evening of Thursday 18th October for our Stylish Wedding Show at Yorkshire Wedding Barn, open 6pm to 9pm, FREE ENTRY, when we will be showcasing this incredible venue while also welcoming a fabulous line-up of the area’s very best suppliers to help inspire and achieve your big day visions.
But for now, on with the gorgeous wedding of Rebecca and Joshua who chose Yorkshire Wedding Barn for their Mexican inspired wedding, complete with a glorious pink and orange colour scheme and a Mariachi soundtrack.
The bridesmaids are a vision in sunset-coloured dresses and the bouquets are bold and bright to evoke a taste of Mexico that packs a real punch, not to mention the vibrant flower wall in front of which Rebecca and Joshua exchanged their vows.
Rebecca wanted a ‘Cinderella’ gown and Blue by Enzoani hit the nail on the head, with a frothy, layered skirt and a crystal bodice with a sweetheart neckline (apt, as the bride and groom are childhood sweethearts!) and delicate barely-there straps. Paired with every girls’ dream shoe, the Louboutin, and a softly styled up do, Rebecca is definitely the belle of the ball!
We love the idea of each table at the wedding breakfast representing a year of Rebecca and Joshua’s courtship, complete with photos to illustrate that time in their lives. After more than ten years together, there were plenty of memories to share – and, by the looks of it, the memory bank was well and truly topped up at this joyful and colourful celebration.
With images by Barnaby Aldrick.
rebecca says: We engaged while in Lanzarote – we booked the holiday to celebrate nine years since Josh asked me to be his girlfriend. From first being together in school, we always knew we wanted to get married to each other. After having a long-distance relationship for five years living at different universities (Newcastle and Liverpool), we finally moved in together and went through great stresses renovating our home. I had been hoping for Josh to propose but he still managed to surprise me by getting down on one knee at sunset on a windswept clifftop on the second night of our holiday.
We got married on Friday 17th August 2018. We had always said we wanted to get married in summer 2018 and, as a teacher, I was limited to the summer holidays if we wanted to go straight on honeymoon. We fell in love with the venue as soon as we saw it and knew the compromise of getting married on a Friday instead of a Saturday was totally worth it.
The venue was Yorkshire Wedding Barn, Gilling West. We decided we’d really like a barn wedding, allowing us to bring our own style to the day, and lots of the barns we looked at were, as you can imagine, full of hay bales and hessian décor. However, the Yorkshire Wedding Barn ticked all the boxes, giving us the upmarket luxury we wanted but still providing a blank canvas for us to decorate in our own way. It was everything we ever wanted and a lot of this came down to Olivia, who organised everything perfectly. We would 100% recommend this venue to any couples wanting to have a wedding day that lasts longer than just a day. The onsite accommodation enabled us to have all of our closest friends and family with us the night before our wedding and Olivia helped arrange breakfast for us all the morning after the wedding as well.
In terms of a theme, having a DIY wedding meant we were able to keep everything really personal. We chose a catering company run by a family friend who agreed to do our absolute favourite food – Mexican – in sharing-style platters for our main course. Danny, an usher, suggested continuing the theme by booking a Mariachi band, so I used Alive Network to source an authentic Mexican Mariachi band, Mariachi King, to play us out of the ceremony and during the drinks reception. Having visited Mexico recently, we ran with this theme, incorporating cacti in the centrepieces, Mexican props for our photo booth and having tequila shots after the incredible best man/usher speech.
Colour-wise, we wanted a bright summer wedding, so we had different shades of pink and orange throughout the colour scheme. These are mine and Josh’s favourite colours and we have a lot of these in our house, so we could keep the decorations afterwards.
When choosing my dress, I went to about four dress shops before I found the one. I knew I wanted a ‘Cinderella’ dress and thought it would probably be strapless – definitely no lace. I tried on so many different types of dress just to be sure (even full lace) but when I went to The Harrogate Wedding Lounge they could tell I knew which style I wanted and picked out lots of beautiful princess dresses. My best friend and maid of honour, Fiona, picked out a Blue by Enzoani dress that I had missed as it had straps. My mum later came into the shop and picked out the same dress so I agreed to try it on, trusting their opinions. It was perfect and there were so many tears from my bridal party when they saw it (not to mention my husband when I walked down the aisle!). After ordering my dress I lost quite a lot of weight, but The Harrogate Wedding Lounge did a great job of taking it in two dress sizes so that it fit perfectly on the day.
To accessorise, I had always dreamt of getting married in a pair of Christian Louboutin shoes so I went to Harvey Nichols, Leeds to buy my dream pair in pink glitter, so I can’t wait to wear them again.
September 26th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
Today’s real wedding between Hazel and Marc gives us a real flavour of their personalities; it’s lovely when a wedding is a true expression of the couple and, even though we’ve never met them, we feel like we know a little bit about these lovely newlyweds just from the details they added to their big day.
Hazel and Marc had a lot of input from their nearest and dearest while planning their wedding too, with the bride’s mother growing all the fresh flowers herself in her garden for a really personal – not to mention seasonal – feel. They even had an original poem penned by a close friend read out during the ceremony and friends singing and playing the guitar to add a special touch.
The décor and details add to the cosy, rustic setting; from the dried flowers in the bouquets and button holes and calligraphy adorned leaf place settings, to the swags of fairy lights and trawling greenery draped along the venue’s exposed brick walls and beams.
Other star elements for us include Hazel’s pretty boho style dress and flower crown as well as the flashes of mustard yellow throughout the flowers, groomsmen’s ties and on the rather spectacular cake, which is beautifully bedecked with fresh fruit and flowers – naked but with plenty of adornments to preserve its modesty!
With images by Jenna Kathleen.
hazel says: We got engaged in Wensleydale on a snowy winter weekend away. Marc took me by surprise when he got down on one knee at a waterfall!
We got married on Sunday 12th August 2018. We wanted to go for a summer date and needed to set the date before my twin sister moves to New Zealand in autumn. It is also the peak of the Perseids shooting star shower.
Our chosen venue was Cubley Hall in Penistone, South Yorkshire. We were hoping for an outdoor ceremony at the band stand, but the English weather let us down in the end! Nevertheless, the barn has really nice cosy lighting with fairy lights and candles, and the walls have plenty of decorations, so you really don’t need to add much extra yourself. We would definitely recommend the venue to other brides and grooms as they did a great job of our big day.
Theme-wise, we loosely went for a natural summer meadow/boho style, both being outdoorsy people.
In terms of colour, we had no set scheme. My mum grew the flowers in her garden, so it was basically all the colours of August flowers.
The bridesmaids wore multi-way silver dresses from Oasis.
September 20th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
Glamorous would certainly be a key word to describe today’s featured wedding between Katie and Tom, with a classic black and white theme carried through the suits and dresses and highlighted beautifully with the all-white flower scheme. There’s a stunning contrast between the white roses and hydrangeas and the deep green of the foliage in the table centrepieces, which, combined with the plush surroundings of the Titanic-themed venue (velvet curtains, sparkling chandeliers – even a padded door into the ceremony room), gives a clear vision of opulence.
Katie and Tom make a picture-perfect couple. Katie’s Ronald Joyce gown with its fishtail silhouette and beautiful lace detail chimes beautifully with the high-end theme and we’re loving the tuxedos on the chaps. Such a classic choice and always guaranteed to add a debonair vibe to the groom’s party. Unusually, Katie went for black fishtail gowns for the bridesmaids and these work so well – the whole look is timeless. A fishtail is also super flattering on all body shapes and, when you have six bridesmaids to dress, it’s a great choice to ensure everyone feels and looks gorgeous.
Complete with a jaw-dropping proposal (we haven’t heard of many grooms hiring an entire venue just to pop the question!), Katie and Tom’s wedding is definitely a lesson in how to style a classic wedding. We’ll let Katie tell us more …
With images and video by Madison Picture.
katie says: We got engaged on 14th March 2014 in London. We went away for the weekend for my birthday and Tom booked out the Trafalgar St James hotel rooftop bar just for us. With incredible views over city centre London he got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. The staff then brought us champagne, macarons and strawberries. We then had a meal in the oldest restaurant in the city, Rules, and finished the evening with a trip to the theatre to watch Les Misérables. The perfect day!
We got married on 7th June 2018. It is a special day for us, as we got married on our eleventh anniversary together as a couple. During the planning of the wedding, I loved looking at the real weddings section of the Brides Up North blog to gain inspiration for our day – and looking at the amazing wedding dresses! It got me so excited about the big day to come.
We got married at 30 James Street hotel in Liverpool – we had the full ceremony and reception there. We live quite close to Liverpool and absolutely love the city. The building is the former White Star Line headquarters and is Titanic themed – the building has lots of history but has been restored with a modern, glamorous feel. We would recommend the venue as it has a lot of character and history – the grand hall is beautiful and spacious. We also liked the fact the bar was in the same room – it kept all the guests in one room and partying.
The theme came from the hotel as it is the ‘home of the Titanic’, so we didn’t add any extra theme to our wedding, as the building itself is enough. The colours we chose were black and white. The groom and groomsmen were all in black tuxedos and the bridesmaids were in black fishtail gowns. We had all-white flowers for bouquets and centrepieces and it all looked classic and simple, yet glamorous.
For my dress, I wore a white fishtail gown with sparkle, beading and lace by designer Ronald Joyce. I always knew I wanted a fishtail gown and chose it as it went really well with our venue and made me feel amazing.
Tom and his groomsmen wore a black tuxedo with braces and a bow tie from Moss Bros.
My bridesmaids wore a black fishtail gown purchased from Jane Norman. It wasn’t a traditional bridesmaid dress but it looked amazing on the day. My flower girl wore a white flower petal dress from Marks & Spencer.
September 19th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
Today’s real wedding is something of a showstopper; we hardly know where to begin as there are so many Insta-worthy moments and details to pore over.
Our featured couple Laura and Ash tied the knot at the astoundingly beautiful Peckforton Castle in Cheshire in May. And we love what they done with the venue – think blossom trees, floating candles, a whimsical floral arch and a candlelit aisle lined with ivory petals. The stuff of fairy-tale dreams. And that’s before we even mention their moreish food and drink line-up of a chocolate truffle brownie cake, elderflower cocktails and a hog roast!
Music played an instrumental (ahem) role in the couple’s big day. Not only did the bride and groom surprise their guests with a performance of two of their own songs, but Laura’s uncle performed a violin solo during their ceremony too, and they also had a string quartet later in the day. And, we have to confess, Laura’s wedding gift to her hubby-to-be – a guitar – is one of the most memorable and thoughtful we’ve ever seen!
With images by Sansom Photography.
laura says: We got engaged on our third anniversary of dating – Valentine’s Day 2017. We had a spontaneous date in the Peak District village of Castleton in the Hope Valley, not far from Sheffield. We had just finished dinner in a charming little restaurant called 1530. Over coffee, our first and favourite pastime, Ash inconspicuously reached into his pocket, to offer me a ‘sweet’ he’d picked up earlier that day – but instead he presented the ring, brightly sparkling in the humble glow of the empty room! It was a complete shock to me, I was instantly brought to tears. The sweetest, softest words were spoken as he moved to one knee beside me, where he received my resounding “yes”. The kind waitstaff re-entered the room in delight and took our photo.
Our wedding date was Saturday 19th May 2018. Although we liked the idea of an autumn wedding, spring 2018 was far enough to plan and ensure a large amount of family and friends from abroad would able to attend and sooner than waiting until autumn 2018. Within three weeks of our engagement, we confirmed our date with the registrar and venue. Ten months later, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their wedding date as the 19th of May, also! We were delighted to share the day (and the beautiful weather).
We initially thought of getting married in London where I spent my childhood in Chiswick, but due to my elderly grandparents living in Cheshire now, we wanted to find an option closer and easier for them to enjoy. Through a casual Google search, Ash came across the incredible Peckforton Castle in Tarporley, Cheshire. From our first glimpse in pictures, we were blown away by the beauty of the castle and grounds. It included stunning countryside surroundings, historic Grade I listed buildings and the perfect backdrop for our dream come true. We went to an open house conveniently that next week and wanted to look no further.
The venue is licensed for civil ceremonies only, which we chose to follow with a Christian blessing and arranged for my uncle to be our celebrant, rather than a local reverend, as this was more personal and meaningful for us. My uncle is also a first violinist for the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and performed a violin solo to a song we chose called Vapor by husband and wife duo, Gungor, during a candle memorial to honour those no longer with us. We included readings by family members: excerpts from The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis and 1 Corinthians 13 before an inspiring closing and prayer.
While we didn’t have a set theme, our style was a gilded floral romance. We chose a palette of ivory, blush and nude against lush foliage of eucalyptus and olive leaves.
Blush and gold were our feature colours as they complemented our florals delicately without distracting from the castle décor. These worked well for spring and kept the mood light and romantic.
I chose a dress by MillaNova, which I purchased from Elements of Serenity Boutique, Swindon. I had originally seen the dress on Pinterest but had no details on who the designer was. After two visits to other boutiques and countless evenings scrolling through my dress inspo board, I hunted down the details and found that only one boutique in the country carried this line! I visited EOS as soon as possible with my aunty who lives in Cheshire and my iPad as we facetimed my mum who lives in the States. We knew that this was the one! I had tried on so many chic, fitted dresses that looked and felt lovely but hadn’t spoken to me the way this MillaNova dress did – I wasn’t initially looking for a ball gown, but this made me feel so beautiful and most like myself. It was a wonderful experience without the hype or pressure you see on TV. The boutique didn’t rush me or over-influence, they were excellent from start to finish.
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