Charlotte Balbier
Luxury Wedding Fairs

bubbles & blooms. house of mooshki for a relaxed wedding at vallum farm – emma & stuart

September 12th, 2016 | Rachel Parry


To get your week off to a fabulous start we’re heading to the North East to relive the beautiful big day of Emma and Stuart.

Brimming with laughter and smiles, this was a rustic and relaxed celebration with lots of fun and interactive elements for guests to enjoy; from social sharing boards at the wedding breakfast to bubble machines, giant deckchairs, entertaining games and, of course, dancing.

We must give a special mention for the wedding cake which looks like a creation worthy of Paul and Mary’s GBBO Showstopper title! An excellent bake!

With images by Jason Friend Photography.


emma says: We got engaged at the Inn on the Lake in Ullswater, on 8th May 2015. It was our three-year anniversary since our first date. We’d had a bit of a rough time with job moves after the threat of redundancy and Stuart realised after getting through so much together he didn’t want to be without me.

He booked the best room with a balcony overlooking the lake and had champagne and chocolates waiting in the room for our arrival. He took me for a walk to the lake and got down on one knee. I was the most awkward person to propose too – I just kept complaining about being hungry and demanded a roast beef and horseradish sandwich. I’m surprised he didn’t change his mind! Apparently he’d had it planned for weeks and had already asked my parents’ permission weeks in advance!

Our wedding was on July 2nd 2016. I knew I didn’t want a long engagement, so once I found the right type of venue with availability, I just grabbed a date.


The wedding took place at Vallum Farm in Northumberland. The area has a special place in both our hearts, as we spent a great deal of our childhoods there with our families, so it seemed right to marry in Northumberland. We aren’t religious but wanted to get married in order to celebrate our relationship with our families whilst enjoying great food, nice wine and a big party – Vallum was perfect for this. The marquee wasn’t even finished when I went to see it for the first time with my mam, but after meeting Hannah there and seeing the place, I knew it was perfect.

We didn’t have a wedding theme as such, but it was essential to have a huge relaxed, party atmosphere with all our loved ones. For the décor I chose rustic and vintage pieces that I felt would work well with the venue.

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picture perfect. maggie sottero for a relaxed wedding in sheffield – kath & tim

August 2nd, 2016 | Rachel Parry

Maggie Sottero for a Relaxed Sheffield Wedding (c) Ruth Atkinson Photography (52)

Today’s real wedding has to be one of my very favourite of the year so far, not only because it features one gorgeous dress and some incredibly dreamy flowers, but also for the couple’s unique choice of venue.

Following a church ceremony, Kath and Tim held their reception at Abbeydale Picture House – a 1920s cinema in the cool Antiques Quarter area of Sheffield. Being from the city myself this is a venue that I love and so I’m thrilled to see it being given a new lease of life in the form of an alternative wedding venue.

Everything about this wedding is a true reflection of the bride and groom, which means it all comes together so effortlessly for a relaxed yet stylish occasion. Oh and if you’re wondering why the flowers in this wedding are so a-maz-ing Kath is a florist – and a very talented one at that!

With images by Ruth Atkinson Photography.

Maggie Sottero for a Relaxed Sheffield Wedding (c) Ruth Atkinson Photography (41)

kath says: We got engaged on 12th September 2015. Tim set up an amazing treasure hunt all around Sheffield by posting photos with clues on Instagram! I had to solve little riddles and puzzles that he had hidden at each stage that led me to significant places we had been to. The final clue led me to Burbage Edge in the Peak District where we had had some special picnics together and as I walked to the “spot”, Tim was there with his guitar! He sang me a song he had written and then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.

We got married on Saturday 14th May 2016. We chose this date because I have my own floristry business and there were very few days left when we could actually get married as I was getting booked up with so many other brides’ weddings!

Maggie Sottero for a Relaxed Sheffield Wedding (c) Ruth Atkinson Photography (27)

We had our wedding service at St Thomas Philadelphia in Sheffield, where we attend. Our reception was held at the Abbeydale Picture House – a 1920s cinema – we used the whole of the auditorium for an afternoon tea reception.

We didn’t have a particular theme – we just did things that we liked. Therefore, our overall ‘theme’ ended up being similar to my flower shop – relaxed, vintage and homemade with lots of flowers, a few small trees at the front of the church and quirky details that we added to the day as we went along.

Being a florist I have come across most colour schemes for weddings, so it was very hard to pick! I’ve seen so many different colour combinations work so well. In the end, I went with what I loved and the colours that I always seemed to be drawn back to. I picked a really natural scheme for my own bouquet using just whites, greens with subtle pinks and then for the bridesmaids’ and venue flowers I used blush pinks and white with pops of peach.

Maggie Sottero for a Relaxed Sheffield Wedding (c) Ruth Atkinson Photography (24)

I wore the Juniper dress by Maggie Sottero, which my mum actually picked out for me on our first wedding dress trip! I knew instantly when I tried it on that it was the perfect dress for me. It was very elegant and quite simple with a vintage feel to it and lots of gorgeous beading and detail at the top. I wanted something that felt really comfortable and still felt like “me”, but was also really special!

Maggie Sottero for a Relaxed Sheffield Wedding (c) Ruth Atkinson Photography (17)

Tim wore a slim-fit navy blue three-piece suit that he bought from Moss Bros. He wore a dusky pink tie which complemented the colour scheme – we eventually found this from Next. He also wore his favourite smart brown shoes from River Island. The groomsmen all wore the same suit as Tim.

I wanted all of my bridesmaids to feel lovely and comfortable and so got them to pick their own dresses – we didn’t want it be really formal, so all the dresses were slightly different in style and colour.

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rosemary & lace. a bespoke dress for a timeless wedding at broughton hall – diana & andy

May 6th, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Timeless Wedding at Broughton Hall (c) Bethany Clarke Photography (46)

Happy Fri-yay to one and all! To get your weekend off to a truly stunning start, we’re sharing the beautifully elegant wedding day of Yorkshire girl Diana and her beau Andy.

After falling in love with the grandeur and charm of Broughton Hall in North Yorkshire, today’s bride and groom planned their relaxed and timeless wedding in just five-and-a-half months (impressive, right?).

Leaving the venue to do the talking, Diana concentrated on selecting simple floral decorations with memorable scents, including romantic rosemary and lavender. And to make herself stand out – a bespoke lace gown and Chanel shoes. Girl, we salute you!

With images by Bethany Clarke Wedding Photography.

A Timeless Wedding at Broughton Hall (c) Bethany Clarke Photography (5)

A Timeless Wedding at Broughton Hall (c) Bethany Clarke Photography (20)

diana says: We got engaged on 31st October 2014. Andy surprised me with a trip to Tuscany, Italy for a long weekend. We drove south to Grosetto, an area we had been to and loved before. Andy planned to go to our favourite beach for a picnic lunch before checking into our hotel.

It was quiet, with a few Italians sunbathing in their speedos! Andy got tomato juice over his hands so walked the few paces to the sea to wash his hands. Looking up, I found him flailing his arms around holding a now wet iPhone looking for something. I went to him and was told to help him look for something, something he had just dropped out of his top pocket. I immediately started sifting through sand in the shallows, asking him what exactly I was looking for. “A ring, he said. A special ring!” We looked for a long time not saying much, until I realised it was fruitless and we were both in soaking wet clothes. We went back to our patch of beach and I guess I was in shock as I had my hands over my eyes. Not knowing whether to laugh or cry, not knowing if that was a proposal or not. Until I turned to find Andy down on one knee asking me to be his wife, holding a box with a diamond in it. I didn’t hesitate with my answer. It was magical. Thinking he had made the whole previous couple of hours up and wondering how I never knew he was such a good actor. It turned out he had bought a proposal ring by one of my favourite designers, Poppy Dandiya, which he had dropped in the sea, which we continued to look for and never found. But thankfully he didn’t lose the diamond and we designed my ring together back in London after spending the most wonderful few days in Tuscany.

We set the date for 13th August 2015. We wanted to get married straight away and once we had decided on our venue, it was the only date left that year, so we went with it!

A Timeless Wedding at Broughton Hall (c) Bethany Clarke Photography (59)

Our wedding ceremony was at All Saints Church Broughton with Elslack, which was followed by a wedding breakfast at Broughton Hall, Skipton, North Yorkshire. The evening reception was then held at Utopia on The Broughton Hall Estate.

It was the first venue we looked at and we fell in love with it. At first it wasn’t possible as there were no dates available. We returned to look at venues in Italy, but as a Yorkshire girl I really wanted to get married at Broughton Hall. Luckily a date came available and we were very happy it did. It was our perfect venue. We were able to be on the estate for five days and the owners and staff made it feel like it was our home for the week.

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green dreaming. maggie sottero for a relaxed wedding in liverpool – sami & matt

February 8th, 2016 | Julia Braime

A Relazed Wedding in Liverpool (c) Hayley Blackledge Photography (25)

This feature comes to you a little later as normal as we’re working hard behind the scenes here at Brides Up North HQ, right on deadline for issue #05 of our beautiful Unveiled Magazine. I always love this last push, bringing together everything that we’ve been working on for so long, and I’ve got my Editor’s hat firmly on. Anna Wintour, I salute you! The industry support for this issue has been phenomenal and we can’t wait to show you all what we’ve been up to for the past six months, so watch this space!

Now, everyone needs a little pretty on a Monday morning (us more than ever right now #sleepdeprived) and as such we’re sharing with you the wonderful wedding of Sami and Matt.

We love the simplicity of this relaxed big day which resulted in a beautiful and fun filled occasion, evident from the abundance of smiles in the images below.

It’s also a lovely tribute to her ‘Gramps’ that Sami built in so many little memories of a family member who was clearly very dear to her in a subtle yet moving way.

With images by Hayley Blackledge Photography.

A Relazed Wedding in Liverpool (c) Hayley Blackledge Photography (29)

sami says: We first got together on a night out on St Patrick’s Day, so seven years later in 2013, Matt took me to Dublin for St Patrick’s Day and proposed outside St Patrick’s Cathedral

We set the date for 12th September 2015, it was my Gramps birthday. He meant the world to me, but sadly died just before we got engaged.

Our ceremony was at Victoria Gallery and Museum (VGM) in Liverpool, and the reception was at Crosby Hall Educational Trust Centre (CHET). We choose these as they were both unique venues and different from each other. Neither of us are originally from Liverpool so we wanted to show off the amazing buildings and sights the city has to offer. The VGM is a very old building in the city centre, and CHET centre is a bit like a converted barn on the outskirts, five minutes from where we now live.

A Relazed Wedding in Liverpool (c) Hayley Blackledge Photography (46)

There was no particular theme to the wedding, though we made all the decorations. The table names were named after cities we’ve visited and we decorated the seating plan using bits that we’d picked up while we were in those cities.

We chose green as the colour scheme as it’s my favourite colour, and also the favourite colour of my Gramps.

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dream venue: healey barn

January 12th, 2016 | Julia Braime

Healey Barn (2)

Healey Barn is is a wonderful new wedding venue in the Northumbrian countryside, near the small village of Healey, 6 miles south of Corbridge in the Tyne Valley, made up of a collection of traditional stone farm buildings surrounding a stunning sheltered courtyard.

Today, we’re thrilled to be able to give Brides Up North a private tour and add this gorgeousrelaxed & rustic setting to our dream venue list.

Healey Barn (6)

healey barn say: Our main building, the Long Barn, has a spectacular oak “raised cruck” roof, three giant candelabra, wall-mounted candle holders, a fairy-lit ceiling and, of course, a barn-sized stone fireplace. This creates an enchanting and romantic atmosphere, perfect for civil ceremonies or for the arrival point after a church wedding – and this later becomes the dance floor!

Joining the Long Barn is the Dining Room, the old cow byre, with another lovely oak roof, a glass wall looking into the Courtyard on one side, and windows to a fantastic Northumbrian view on the other. The Dining Room is spacious and luxurious for smaller numbers, but will accommodate higher numbers. At the end of the Dining Room is a copper-clad bar, which has a licence until 1am.

The Courtyard is sheltered by the buildings and is perfect for post-ceremony drinks on a mild day, and at night looks magical with fairy-lit trees, fire pits and lanterns. There are 3 giant oak planters with seats around them, 6 umbrella-topped trees, and various benches, cosy sun traps and planted troughs and borders. There is also a shelter with garden furniture; providing a covered outside area and a smokers’ refuge.

The northernmost building, the Store Room, contains smart toilets and also the Bride’s Room, where, before civil ceremonies, the Bride can arrive discreetly and see the registrars before making her entrance into the Long Room.

If it is a relaxed feel a couple want, with incredible food and great service, this is the place for them!

What facilities does it have? 

Couples have exclusive use of the barn during their wedding. We have a civil ceremony licence – inside and outside and we have a music and bar licence till 1am. We have a separate ceremony room, dining room and bridal room – so the day will flow naturally and with ease. There is no waiting around during the day for rooms to be set up.

Each couple has a dedicated wedding coordinator throughout the planning process and a front of house on the day helping to run everything smoothly. We also have in-house caterers, and there’s an 8-spit rotisserie visible through a glass screen from the Dining Room, and large mobile BBQ which can be moved in and out of sight as appropriate.

We have stunning, landscaped gardens – ideal for the backdrop of those important wedding photos. There are views overlooking the gorgeous Northumberland countryside too!

Healey Barn (4)

What sort of numbers are we talking? 

The Long Barn used for ceremonies has a licence for 140 people and the Dining Room has a capacity for 140 guests. Additional evening guests are more than welcome too, and the barn can accommodate up to 200 in total in the evening.

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ain’t no mountain high enough. a handmade wedding in the lake district – emily & neil

November 2nd, 2015 | Rachel Parry

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

This morning on the blog we’re travelling to the beautiful Lakes to relive Emily and Neil’s big day.`

Following a proposal at the top of Coniston Old Man, Emily and Neil felt it fitting to hold their wedding in the Lake District too, and so decided on a relaxed & homemade affair in a venue at the base of the mountain where they got engaged.

So grab your walking boots and trekking poles, as we join the happy couple in Cumbria.

With images from Darren Athersmith.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

emily says: We got engaged in January 2014, it was a surprise engagement at the top of Coniston Old Man, Neil had asked my dad the day before, he planned to be at the top for sunrise however the top was covered in a snow blizzard so it was an icy proposal but we soon dropped down out of the blizzard to a lovely January sunrise.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

Our wedding was on the 25th July 2015; we chose the date as Neil is a school teacher so we wanted to tie it into his school holidays.

We got married at Coniston Coppermines Mountain Cottages – we chose the venue as we live locally and both love the Lake District. We are at our happiest when up in the hills and knew we didn’t want a traditional church/hotel wedding. We also felt it so fitting that there was a wedding venue at the base of the mountain we go engaged at the top of. We loved the flexibility that the Coppermines offered us, the venue being ours for the whole weekend. We wanted guests to have a mini holiday as well as celebrating our marriage, plus we wanted family and friends travelling from around the country to see the surroundings we love. We had a marquee put up on the side of the cottages by Evans Marquee Hire, the front elevation of the marquee was all windows to make the most of the beautiful views down the valley towards Coniston Water.

We wanted a small intimate ceremony of just our immediate family, then as we were away having some photos taken our guests arrived for afternoon tea, it was great to get back to find everyone had joined us. More friends and family then joined us in the evening for the party.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

We didn’t want a themed wedding and wanted the feel of the wedding to be relaxed and to suit the mountainous surroundings so all materials were natural and rustic. It was important to us that as much of the wedding as possible was home made. We didn’t want the wedding to be just about one day; it was a real family effort over the 18 months of our engagement. We did call on friends for help too – my good friend and owner of Dotty Flamingo laser cut the lace design on our wedding stationery and I then put together the cards for invitations and place names.

I didn’t want a colour scheme as such either and so had limited colour palette of white and natural tones. I wanted to use varying materials rather than have a ‘colour theme’ I loved the contrast of using the hessian and lace together teamed with simple flowers and lots of timber.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

My fair colouring and red hair means white just washes me out so I found a nude coloured wedding dress online that had the warmth I needed and my mum was able to customise it for me. I chose a tea length dress as I didn’t want to spend the day worrying about my dress trailing on the ground as I knew we would be having photos taken in the mountainous surroundings.

The only splash of colour I had was my bright orange hunter wellies – thankfully the weather was glorious so the wellies weren’t critical. My shoes were from Dune, they were the same nude tone as my dress and had coloured stones on the T-bar. I got the same shoes in flats and heels if I needed to change for the dancing later in the night. I liked the fact that the shoes weren’t traditionally bridal so I could wear them after the wedding.

I made my hair piece myself, I bought a selection of wires and beads from Bojangle Beads in Loughborough and twisted the beads and wire around a thin gold Alice band. My jewellery was all borrowed from my mum, I wore pearl stud earrings, bracelet and pendant. My mum always used to wear the pendant when I was a child, it brings back lovely childhood memories every time I see it so I wanted to wear it on the day.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

Neil wore a grey-brown slim fit tweed wool suit from Next.

Our two nieces (18-months-old and 4-years-old) were flower girls and wore sundresses from Marks and Spencer, in a soft mint green with flowery lace overlay and shoes from Next.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

Our photographer was locally based Darren Athersmith. As soon as we met Darren we knew he was the photographer for us, not only did we want him to capture our wedding day, it was important to capture the mountain landscape we were in and he has a love of Lakeland landscape photography as well as portraits. We didn’t want any formal posed line up photos, we just wanted him to disappear into the day and capture us, our family and friends enjoying themselves again keeping that relaxed feel to the day. His whole approach is relaxed and puts you immediately at ease.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

I wanted all white flowers and grew our own sweet peas that I had in my bouquet, they are my favourite flowers, and I love the scent.

We also grew other flowers to be dotted around the venue; we then topped up the flowers with green foliage from the garden and bought some white stocks, freesia (again for their scent) and sprays of gypsophila.

We made an arbour from silver birch branches that we added to with greenery from the garden, it was great as a natural frame for some of the photos. As an extra special touch, we used my grandad’s old watering can and steel bucket to arrange some flowers in, it was a small touch that meant a lot to me.

We made silver birch candle holders and jam jars covered in hessian and lace as small flower vases for the table centre pieces. Our table names were all mountains we have summited.

As mentioned the wedding was a real family effort and everyone pitched in to help. Mum and I set about making all the bunting that adorned the ceiling of the marquee, it took months and months to make, but was well worth it. The most special flags have lace that my mum took from her own wedding dress for us to use.

My dad made planters from old pallets that we put branches into with fairy lights on, they were a great backdrop during the day behind Neil and I during the afternoon tea and looked lovely when lit up in the evening.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

Being outdoorsy we wanted favours that would remind guests of the day longer than just a mouthful of sugared almond so we made seed packets for each guest to take away to (hopefully) plant, grow and enjoy.

Neil’s mum made the three tiers of fruit wedding cake for us and I decorated it myself with lots of advice from friend and local cake maker Bird Bakes from Ulverston. I made the wooden dolly peg cake topper people myself and my 4-year-old niece painted some pegs as ‘the congregation’ that we stuck into the large timber homemade cake stand.

Our catering was by local company Premier Outside Catering of Baycliff, they served champagne and canapés (the canapés were made by Neil’s brother-in-law who is a chef) to family after the ceremony. We then had and afternoon tea with a selection of sandwiches, pastries and cakes. Later in the evening we had pie and peas.

We didn’t have a bar and asked people to bring their own drinks for the day/evening whilst we provided Pimms on arrival then wine and Prosecco for the afternoon tea and speeches.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

To provide entertainment, put together playlists for the ceremony and afternoon tea and hired a speaker/PA system from local company SAP Pro Audio in Kendal. It was so much fun putting together songs we both liked in the months leading up to the wedding and we still listen to the playlists now.

It was really important for us to have live music at the evening part of the wedding as we wanted everyone up and dancing – we even provided a hamper full of flip flops so there was no excuse for sore feet!  Local band Ulpha590 played into the night as we danced away.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

We loved having our wedding at the Coppermines and thankfully the sun shone all day; we felt the whole place reflected us as a couple perfectly. It was great that we had use of the venue all weekend; we had a barbeque on the Sunday and guests had use of the four hot tubs which overlooked the surrounding hillside.

I couldn’t really say I have a favourite part of the day; all of it, including the run up was great fun. I think because we wanted everything to feel relaxed we didn’t feel under pressure at all.

The wedding of Emily & Neil at the Coppermines

We went to the Isle of Harris and Lewis in the Outer Hebrides for our honeymoon. We used my parent’s campervan to tour for two weeks with our dog. We had an amazing time, the weather was kind to us so we got to explore the many beaches that really are incredible, the sand was so white and sea so clear blue plus it was lovely and quiet.

My top tip to other Brides Up North would be not to get sucked into what you think is expected of you as a bride or groom; it’s your day so do whatever feels right for you. Also take some time, just the two of you, stand back and take in all that’s going on around you as the day will fly by.

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