Charlotte Balbier

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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home is where the heart is. stella york for a relaxed wedding in east yorkshire – lisa & tim

October 6th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (60)

When it came to this morning’s wedding couple’s venue search it was a case of there’s no place like home as they opted for a traditional church ceremony followed by a marquee reception in the garden of the bride’s mum and stepdad’s home.

Keen to make the occasion fun for their guests, Lisa and Tim put on garden games, live entertainment and an informal afternoon tea, all in keeping with their garden party themed relaxed wedding.

We very much enjoyed that Lisa switched things up a bit when it came to her and her maids’ attire by choosing a blush pink dress for herself and cute ivory dresses for her leading ladies.

With images by Jemma King Photography.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (3)

lisa says: We got engaged outside a restaurant after Tim had taken me for a meal to celebrate my 30th birthday in August 2014. He had wanted to propose inside, but it was tight space wise for getting down on one knee and he didn’t fancy being practically sat on the couple next to us knee! After a lovely evening he proposed outside overlooking a football pitch which was very fitting as football is Tim’s other love. He did however get a soaking wet knee as the grass was wet!

Our wedding date was 27th June 2015. It turned out on enquiring with the church that it was also the weekend of the village garden festival and so the church would be already decorated, which was a lovely and lucky coincidence.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (2)

We had our ceremony in our parish church, St Helens in Welton, East Yorkshire. The church and setting are beautiful and on attending some services we, and our two children, were made to feel very welcome. Our reception was held in a marquee (hired from All Occasions Marquees and Events in Hull) in the meadow at my mum and step dad’s home. They moved there the year previous and we instantly knew it was the perfect setting for us with a pair of old railway cottages stood in the garden and the countryside views – it was personal and unique. We are very lucky that we had this option and that my parents were so willing to open up their home and do so much work to prepare the garden and install a couple of toilets in their outbuildings and cottages so we had proper loo’s to use!

As we held our wedding in my parent’s garden we aimed for a relaxed garden party feel incorporating some vintage glamour. We opted for substantial canapés and afternoon tea with a hog roast in the evening. With having two children ourselves (aged 11 and two) and plenty of other children attending we wanted a vibe which allowed everyone to relax and enjoy themselves. We borrowed some giant garden games from the school my sister teaches at and set up a homemade photo booth with props, which the kids ended up using mainly as a dressing up box! We were also gifted some amazing children’s activity packs from my friend Joanne at Angelic Angels which kept the children entertained through the speeches and beyond.

Our colour scheme was based around my blush pink dress! We were not too precious over colours but once I had fallen in love with the dress I did subtly steer things in a more pink direction. I had also fallen completely in love with some rose gold sequin table cloths so between them and my dress I created our vintage blush scheme.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (11)

My dress was Stella York’s 5923 design in moscato. I actually spotted it as soon as I walked into the shop and only tried it on as I thought something so beautiful would look ridiculous on me…but it was too beautiful not to try on. The colour was so much more flattering on my skin tone than ivory and white, but it wasn’t until I returned to the shop to try that and another dress on again that I realised I couldn’t get it out of my head. I chose a full length veil in blush which made me feel like the bride I’d always imagined, and a hairband with sparkle and lace detailing which coordinated beautifully.

My shoes were from Red or Dead with a chunky heel for height and comfort.

I bought my dress, veil and hairband from Cheryl Chambers Bridal Boutique in Sutton, Hull. The ladies there are so helpful and provide a lovely relaxed atmosphere, and the shop is full of sparkly little treasures, I really enjoyed every visit.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (24)

Tim chose a grey tailcoat suit with matching waistcoat and a pink tie. They were hired from Slaters Menswear. Tim’s best man and ushers, along with both our step dads, wore the same as Tim, including our 11-year-old son. My dad wore his own kilt in our family tartan and our two-year-old was more relaxed but traditional in a buster suit from childrensalon.com and white T-bar shoes from Babyshoes.

The bridesmaids wore ivory lace dresses from BHS that were actually short wedding dresses but as I was wearing blush pink with ivory lace, their dresses coordinated lovely with mine.

As a little extra, I bought all the men pink socks with their role in the wedding printed on them and gave them as a surprise. We also gave the men cufflinks shaped into their initials as a thank you gift, and I gave my bridesmaids silver knot earrings as a thank you for helping us ‘tie the knot’.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (29)

We hired a beautiful Humber car from Marshalls Wedding Cars to take us to the church, it was only a five minute journey between where each of us were staying and the church so we used the same car which did four trips in total to get us all there. The car we used was actually Tim’s mum and step dad’s wedding car, which was a lovely touch. The owner of the cars has a huge collection and provided a great service, I would highly recommend brides contact him to go and view the cars.

To solve the issue of lack of parking space at my mum’s, our guests and us travelled from the church to reception in a vintage bus and coach hired from East Yorkshire Coaches. It was certainly a novelty and everyone travelling together kept a lovely social atmosphere. We travelled on the small coach with close family and the bridal party and it was really lovely to have that journey all together after the church.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (35)

Our photographer was Jemma King. She really understood our vision for the day and we felt very comfortable around her. The first time we met, our toddler had her on the floor playing! It was like having a friend there, but one who could get people organised! We had loads of compliments on the day of how good she was with people and are thrilled with our finished photos. I would, and already have, recommended her.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (62)

We didn’t have any fresh flowers on the day other than what was already in church for the garden festival. I made my own brooch and bead bouquet as it was something I had always wanted to try since I fell in love with one I saw online years before. The men had dried flower buttonholes which I won on eBay! And I bought dried flower bouquets to coordinate from daisyshop.co.uk for my two bridesmaids. That way we could buy everything in advance and they could be kept and displayed afterwards. Plus the dried flowers with lavender smelt amazing!

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (65)

As décor for the reception we hired some stunning rose gold sequin table cloths from Belle Bijoux Events, and I decorated Hobbycraft white twig trees with paper flowers to create centrepieces that doubled up as a guest book. We left tags on each table for guests to leave us a message and hang on the trees. They looked great once they were filled with lovely messages from our family and friends.

Dragonfly Print made us some fabulous personalised signs for our photo booth, our homemade date jar, and a ‘rules of the dancefloor’ amongst others.

At my hen weekend all my hens set aside time to help me assemble and stick sparkles on my order of service booklet, wrap pens in ribbon and paint our Hobbycraft post box. It was a real team effort!

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (64)

We displayed our table plan, which I handwrote onto card bunting, on a borrowed vintage step ladder and decorated it with jars and bottles filled with fake flowers bought from Hobbycraft and Dunelm. My mum filled wicker baskets full of essentials such as a mini sewing kit, paracetamol, baby wipes etc. and left one in each bathroom. She even bought bride and groom printed loo paper!

Our cake was a four tier Cath Kidston inspired creation. It was made by the lovely Cakes By Leni, in Hull. We chose a Baileys sponge, a chocolate Malteaser layer and a lemon sponge layer. The smallest top layer was a dummy cake. It was almost too beautiful to cut, but tasted yummy!

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (74)

Tim’s brothers are both chefs and organised a catering team for us. We opted for substantial canapés such as mini fish and chips, followed by an afternoon tea type sandwiches and cakes during the speeches. We didn’t want people to have to wait around or spend a long time sat at a table, and wanted to create a relaxed, informal vibe. To continue this feel, we chose a hog roast for our evening food which was very popular! Tim’s parents provided champagne and a couple of glasses of wine per person, however there was more wine than we anticipated! Which nobody seemed too unhappy about. We also hired Escapade Bars who brought a fully stocked bar and we chose five cocktails that they could also offer throughout the night.

In terms of entertainment, my step dad sings in a barbershop quartet who kindly sang for us on arriving at the reception and whilst we disappeared for photographs. They even personalised one song with our names, which was a lovely surprise. For the evening do we hired The Mike Brown Band, who really got the party started and were absolutely fantastic. They did a split of live sets and DJ’ed in between. We didn’t think we would be able to afford a live band, however their prices were comparable to a decent DJ, but the atmosphere they created in our opinion was worth so much more.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (44)

Following our wedding I would certainly recommend that if couples can use a family home or garden for their big day that they consider it. It is lovely visiting my mum’s house and remembering our special day. It also creates something true to the couple and very unique.

My favourite part of the day was the church ceremony. We kept things very traditional in the church and I really enjoyed singing the hymns and all our music choices and reading choices really brought it together giving me goose bumps. I was so nervous walking in, but couldn’t stop smiling and even did a little cheer when we were pronounced as husband and wife.

Stella York for a relaxed wedding in East Yorkshire (c) Jemma King (80)

With having two children, including one at school, we haven’t gone on an official honeymoon. Instead my dad gifted us a weekend in Centre Parcs with our boys the week after the wedding. We all enjoyed our mini family moon just relaxing and spending quality time all together in one of our favourite holiday destinations.

My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to remember that whatever happens in the run up to the day, it will all be ok. I had to have a tooth extracted two days beforehand, our first choice of vintage bus broke the day before our wedding amongst many other perceived disasters, but honestly on the day none of it mattered! It’s only one day, and it goes so quickly, just breathe and take it all in. I want to do it all again!

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keeping things cosy. a coast gown for a relaxed & intimate wedding in harome – sarah & andy

March 10th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (42)

A big  wedding just isn’t for everyone and so it’s lovely to see couples organising small, intimate celebrations with just their very nearest and dearest as an alternative. Andy and Sarah had just 30 guests at their wedding and though small, it was perfectly formed.

The setting was a cosy hotel in the lovely village of Harome (one of my very favourite places) which provided a warm and homely environment for them to tie the knot.

With images by James Tracey Photography.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (4)

sarah says: We got engaged in summer 2011. Andy had surprised me and bought me a new watch. We had plans to go out for a meal that evening and when I’d finished getting ready Andy handed me the box which had my watch in it but he had replaced the watch with my engagement ring. Total surprise, never expected it.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (11)

We decided to set the date for 25th October 2014 as it’s a nice time of the year. Sort of the end of autumn, beginning of winter and still chance of a nice sunny day (which we had) but dusk early evening.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (9)

Our chosen venue was The Pheasant Hotel in Harome, near Helmsley, North Yorkshire. We hadn’t decided on anywhere but had been to Malton for the day. I had Googled venues in the area and The Pheasant caught my eye. The moment we walked in we knew this was the venue. It was Christmas at the time too so it was very festive and cosy with all the Christmas decorations.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (28)

We didn’t have a special theme as it was only a very small wedding with a total of 30 guests so just a very intimate celebration with a small group of very close friends and family. There wasn’t a colour theme as such either. I had my sister as maid of honour and my two-year-old daughter as my flower girl. I kept Tilly natural in an ivory dress and my sister wore a black evening gown. My husband wore a dark grey suit from Next and his best man wore a navy suit.

I didn’t want a big dress as the wedding and venue were only small. What I picked was plain but classic – a cream strapless dress from Coast with a lace, off the shoulder bolero which buttoned up the back from a local bridal shop.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (13)

James Tracey was our photographer. He was recommend by a couple of old work colleagues who both spoke very highly of him. I spoke to James several times before the wedding and instantly felt at ease and had every confidence in him. James made me feel very comfortable on my wedding day and it was a pleasure to have him be a part of my special day. I would highly recommend him to friends and family.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (25)

I carried a bouquet of blue and white thistle, agapanthus, white avalanche roses, blue veronica, white bouvardia, eucalyptus. My bridesmaids carried the same but a smaller version. They were put together by Busy Liz’s Floral Design in Kirbymoorside. The same flowers were used for the décor and the room where we got married was candlelit.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (35)

As favours we had pink chocolate lips lollipops for the ladies and milk chocolate moustaches for the men from a company called Cocoa Loco. Our cake was made by a family friend at Cakehouse on the Lane. We had a cream coloured cutting cake with a diamante ‘Mr & Mrs’ topper and cream cupcakes.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (37)

I would absolutely recommend The Pheasant Hotel to others. This venue is just perfect for a wedding, so romantic. We’ll definitely be returning for our anniversary. It is perfect for small weddings like ours or for larger weddings you can have exclusivity of the hotel.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (51)

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (53)

I couldn’t possibly pick out a favourite part of the day – it was all perfect.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (55)

For our honeymoon we had a city break to Rome for four nights. Neither of us had ever visited Italy. What a way to end our wedding.

a relaxed and intimate wedding in Helmsley (c) James Tracey Photography (34)

My top tip to other Brides Up North is relax and don’t stress. Whatever hasn’t been planned/booked doesn’t matter. No one else will know but you. Stand back and just take it all in.

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