Charlotte Balbier

green gables. justin alexander for a shabby chic wedding at inglewood manor – ghislaine & gareth

June 3rd, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (36)

Today’s real wedding starts with a romantic proposal in Barcelona which scores groom Gareth top marks with us girls here at Brides Up North HQ.

After saying ‘yes’ (and getting over the shock) Ghislaine and Gareth agreed to take their time to save up for their dream wedding rather than ploughing through the planning.

The result is a carefully constructed big day with filled with smiles, laughter, cake and a good measure of lace and burlap to fit their shabby chic theme. Just stunning!

With images by Adam Riley Photography.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (5)

ghislaine says: I hate surprises but the day before my 26th birthday (in 2012) Gareth surprised me with a four-day break to Barcelona – little did I know that he was also planning to propose on my birthday. Gareth popped the question down at the Port of Barcelona following an evening of fantastic tapas and sangria. I was completely unprepared and couldn’t hold back the tears, especially when he produced a beautiful diamond ring and I realised that he had also requested permission from my father in true romantic style before our trip.

Following our engagement we quickly realised that we would need a couple of years to save up for our wedding whilst still enjoying ourselves. As we got engaged in October we started to consider October dates. Neither of us had our hearts set on a summer wedding and when we realised the significant price difference between peak and off peak wedding packages we knew that October was the perfect month for us. We chose the 24th October 2014.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (1)

From the beginning we knew that we always wanted a small wedding, as neither of us particularly like being the centre of attention. We initially considered getting married abroad and very nearly booked a venue in Verona, Italy – however we both had specific members of our family and friends whom we wanted to be there and soon realised that getting married abroad was not an option for us.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (10)

We’re both originally from Wales but met each other and have lived together in Liverpool for a number of years so we started to look at venues in Cheshire (half way between our families and friends). We chose Inglewood Manor and everything about it was perfect. Kim Shute the wedding co-ordinator was dream to work with and we can’t recommend her highly enough. The manor itself is an Edwardian country house and has 29 bedrooms to enable friends and family to stay – exactly what we wanted for our intimate wedding. We ended up staying at Inglewood the night before and the night of our wedding with many of our friends and family helping us to extend our wedding celebrations by making a weekend of it.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (11)

Our theme (if any) was ‘shabby chic’ as this reflects our personalities and our home – we were keen to incorporate as many pieces of our personal belongings into our wedding day rather than buying new items.

One of our favourite colours is sage green so deciding on a colour scheme wasn’t too difficult. We were fairly traditional and didn’t disclose the colour scheme until our invitations were sent out but some of our friends had already guessed based on fact that many of the rooms in our home are decorated in varying shades of green.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (17)

Choosing my wedding dress was probably the only aspect I felt nervous about but I should never have worried as my dress was the second dress I tried on and I loved it instantly. My dress was a lace Justin Alexander gown with a bateau neckline and mermaid train. We customised the dress with a belt to add a bit of sparkle and I also wore a chapel length lace veil. I bought the dress from Brides of Liverpool but it was customised and adjusted by a fantastic seamstress called Janey G who is also based in Liverpool.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (15)

Gareth and the groomsmen wore classic tails. This was a surprise as Gareth originally thought he would wear a tailored suit but having tried on various options felt most comfortable in tails. Gareth looked super handsome on the day but our little pageboy Sam definitely stole the show in his miniature version.

I had eight bridesmaids in total, slightly ridiculous for a wedding of 72 people, but I couldn’t imagine getting ready or getting married without them all being there so it was a no brainer! The girls wore full-length dresses designed by Dessy in sage green and my little adorable flower-girl wore an ivory dress with matching sash.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (31)

The bridal party’s hair and makeup was looked after by a fantastic bridal hair and make-up artist called Nicola Joyce. I trusted her completely and she did not disappoint us; her calm manner, personality and style is a credit to her and I she was a pleasure to have around on the wedding morning.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (26)

Our photographer was the amazing Adam Riley. Gareth enjoys photography and we both knew that choosing the right photographer was one of the most important aspects of our day. Gareth spent many hours looking for photographers online and Adam’s photography caught our eye. We visited Adam a number of times before our wedding to discuss details and we found that we spent time chatting about our lives/holidays as if to a friend rather than a stranger. Both Gareth and I are rubbish at having our photos taken and both agreed that Adam’s true reportage style was exactly what we wanted.

Adam captured the story of our day perfectly and never once made us feel uncomfortable. We wanted to enjoy our day rather than spend hours having posed photos and Adam captured every moment without us even realising it. We can’t thank him enough and would recommend him every single time – he’s even offered to shoot our second wedding if we ever renew our vows!

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (28)

I carried a hand-tied bouquet of pale pink Sweet Avalanche Roses with cerise pink mini Eden Spray Roses and Gypsophila, and the bridesmaids carried hand-tied bouquets of Gypsophila. I love Gypsophila and felt that the simple pink and white colours worked really well with sage green colour scheme. Our bouquets, button-holes and corsages were made by a fab florist called Mark at Gordale Garden Centre near to Inglewood Manor.

We bought and arranged the flowers for the venue/reception ourselves. In the run up to the wedding, Gareth and I collected every wine bottle and jam jar we could find and decorated them with twine, lace, pink ribbon and burlap to tie in with our shabby chic theme. Gareth is now a whizz with a glue gun!

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (43)

We used loads of candles and tea lights to create a relaxed atmosphere and filled the jars with Gypsophila and Sweet Avalanche Roses that we bought from Liverpool Flower Market the day before the wedding. We also used an old-style suitcase (normally kept on top of our wardrobe at home housing my handbags) to display our table plan and we filled the base with gorgeous flowers.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (34)

We didn’t make personalised favours but instead set up a vintage sweet table with all of our favourite treats ranging from peanut M&M’s through to marshmallows and peardrops. Again we used an old-style suitcase for display purposes and collected numerous crystal dishes (thanks to Julia, Gareth’s mum) as I love cut glass.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (42)

We knew we didn’t want a traditional wedding cake and we found it very difficult to narrow down which flavours we would like (we both love cake). In the end we ended up having eight different cakes displayed in glass cloches. We made and decorated a number of cakes ourselves including a traditional fruit cake (which was generously fed with brandy for six months before the wedding) and we also bought a number of cakes from one of our favourites bakeries called Cuthbert’s Bakehouse in Liverpool – the cakes were delicious!

Our guests enjoyed a range of canapés in the afternoon including mini fish and chips and Welsh rarebit, followed by a beautiful three course evening meal. In the evening we didn’t have additional guests and so had a lighter buffet of bacon/sausage batches and wedges together with as much cake as people could manage.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (44)

Our music for the day was provided by a fabulous string quartet called The Dotted Crotchets. We first heard them play at The Trafford Centre in Manchester and we both knew they were exactly what we were looking for. They are the perfect mix of traditional and contemporary, playing many modern chart hits. I walked down the aisle to Hoppipolla by Sigur Ros and we left our ceremony to Friday I’m in Love by The Cure.

The Dotted Crotchets continued to play throughout the afternoon and entertained our guests with great hits from Journey, Coldplay, Rihanna and Take That. They even enthralled our two youngest guests with a rendition of the famous Frozen theme tune – we can’t thank them enough.

We also had a magician called Ian Knowles, who mingled with our guests throughout the afternoon. He is a work colleague of Gareth’s and his magic tricks are second to none – all of our guests loved him.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (48)

There were a few special touches on the day which included my sister presenting me with a story book of my life to date that she had created and my mum had framed various baby photos of myself and Gareth which were displayed in the reception areas of Inglewood Manor. It was very emotional for Gareth and I and was great talking points for all of our guests.

Unbeknown to us, my best friend Charlotte had also secretly organised and recorded a video containing clips of all of our guests singing lines to the Bruno Mars song Marry Me. This was played to us during the evening and honestly blew us away! We still can’t believe the time and effort involved by Charlotte and all off our guests for taking part – thank you.

Later on in the evening, my sister and brother-in-law led us outside to see ‘Just Married’ lanterns lined up along Inglewood’s terrace. This was a perfect touch and has since become one of our favourite photographs taken by Adam Riley.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (49)

I thoroughly enjoyed the whole day though. Walking down the aisle to see all of our lovely family and friends smiling back at me and Gareth looking completely over-whelmed was a breath-taking moment.

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (47)

For our honeymoon we spent two weeks in paradise in the Maldives. We arrived to monsoon type rain that lasted a couple of days, but we didn’t let it spoil our excitement. The island really was pure paradise and we experienced some of the best food we have ever eaten, from fillet steak to fresh sea food. If we could go back tomorrow we’d both be jumping on the plane immediately!

A Shabby Chic Wedding at Ingelwood Manor (c) Adam Riley Photography (53)

My top tip to other Brides Up North would be – don’t let the weather worry you. Getting married in October we had planned for rain and I was prepared for a day indoors, however we had a beautiful day and we spent a good couple of hours outside in the afternoon with many guests commenting that it was actually too hot inside.

Things that worry you beforehand will not even be given a second thought on the day as you are far too busy enjoying yourself. If we could do it all again tomorrow…we most definitely would. Best day of our lives!

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A DIY Dream: A Real Wedding In Cheshire – Natasha & Kevin

January 29th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Another extremely beautiful Real Wedding celebration to get Tuesday off to a beautiful start? Ah, go on then.

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Natasha and Kevin’s home spun Cheshire wedding is full of perfect details, little surprises and gorgeous personal touches.  These childhood sweethearts certainly know how to throw a good party!  With beautiful images by Kanashay Photography, let’s join the love birds on their big day…

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Natasha says:  Kev and I are childhood sweethearts, together since our early teens. I was convinced that I would know when he was going to propose, especially after more than 10 years together, but somehow he still managed to surprise me.

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Kev proposed whilst we were on holiday in the South of France in the beautiful town of Carcassonne where he had booked us an amazing little villa to stay in. Kev often arranges lovely treats like this for us to do so I had absolutely no idea what was coming.  A few days into our holiday Kev suggested we went for a walk around a near by chateau. There wasn’t another person on the grounds that day, and I remember thinking what a beautiful and romantic place it was. We strolled around hand in hand, until we reached a picturesque stone staircase overlooking the entire grounds of the chateau, there Kev got down on one knee and with tears in his eyes asked if I would marry him, and after much squeaking, squealing and crying I of course said yes!

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We were married at Peover Golf Club, Cheshire, on Friday 19th October 2012.  The moment that we walked into Peover Golf Club we knew instantly that this was the venue for us. We had already put it on the short list after spying it on the internet, but it was even more beautiful in the flesh and exactly what we wanted. The timber frames, fairy lights and climbing plants give the venue that natural and rustic look we were after, suiting our personalities and taste down to the ground.

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I’m not sure there was a theme as such, we just knew that we wanted lots of natural and rustic elements and some DIY projects. We definitely didn’t want any fuss or bling!

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Our wedding invitations featured a hand painted autumnal tree and bird cage on brown recycled card, decorated with lace and twine. This look, along with my obsession with bunting, pretty much continued throughout the rest of the wedding process.

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We kept almost everything secret from the majority of our friends and family as I wanted them to have some surprises on the day.

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We opted for a sage green colour to fit in the the rustic and natural look. The bridesmaids wore this colour and sage green sashes were tied around we wooden chairs in the venue. We also added some splashes of dusty pink, creams and beige.

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On the day I travelled with my Mum, Dad and three bridesmaids on a fabulous Charabanc bus supplied by Horgans Cars. It wasn’t at all traditional but it was really important to me that we all travelled together and I’m so glad we did. We laughed all the way to the venue, it’s a memory I will always treasure.

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I got to try on so many wedding dresses in my search for the perfect dress, which I loved! However, I’m one of those girls that had already decided upon the kind of wedding dress I would wear years before. I knew exactly what it was supposed to look like and how it should fit , so I started to feel a little disheartened when with less than 6 months to go I still hadn’t found MY dress. Luckily a friend asked if I would model some bridal wear for a local shop, it was only through doing this that I got talking to the shop owner to whom I described my dream dress and as if my magic she thought she may have the dress for me. One week later my dream dress was ordered. Hooray! I choose a Mori Lee wedding dress by Madeline Gardner, which was supplied by the lovely ladies at Zyra Bridal Wear. They altered and changed the dress so it looked just the way I had hoped.

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I would suggest that any bride who knows what they want, to keep pursuing it. I was told by many bridal boutiques that the type of dress I was looking for would either be unsuitable for my frame or that they didn’t supply what I was looking for. Keep looking you WILL find your dress, and you WILL have that moment when you just know it was meant for you.

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Our bridesmaids wore sage green silk chiffon dresses from Coast, while the groomsmen wore light grey three piece lounge suits which were purchased from Hightown Menswear, Sandbach.

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I carried a bouquet of white hydrangeas and gypsophila, it looked just the way I wanted- simple and pretty.

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My cousin Sam played his acoustic guitar during the ceremony, which was just beautiful and so touching. We also choose two poems which were read by my bridesmaids and my sister in law Yvonne.

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There are just SO many favourite moments from the day…  the feeling I had as we said our vows and as we were pronounced man and wife was out of this world. Sneaking off for our little photo shoot and getting to spend some quiet time together, and Kev’s speech, it was just beautiful!

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Booking our photographer (Kanashay Photography) was seriously one of the best decisions we made. She was utterly fabulous throughout the day and I think the photographs speak for themselves!

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Our wedding was a real DIY project and we had just 9 months to do it in! We hand painted the tree design on each invitation for our day guests and made each brown paper package to hold their wedding favours.

I also panted a large canvas with a tree, on which our wedding guests were asked to add a green fingerprint to represent a leaf, and sign their name.

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We had a wish tree, that we attached handmade paper flowers, wooden hearts, pearls and buttons buttons to. Our guests then wrote us messages on luggage tags and attached them to the branches.

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We spent lots of time sorting through old pictures of friends and family to place in a specially made photo album entitled ‘a trip down memory lane’, for guests to enjoy.

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Kev’s mum very kindly sewed yards of beautiful bunting using material sourced from local charity shops, which was hung all over the venue.

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The flowers used to decorate the venue were collected from the local market and arranged the day before the wedding by myself and Kev’s mum. We displayed flowers and candles in various sized jam jars, which were decorated with lace and ribbon.

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My Mum did a wonderful job of making a basket full of pretty confetti cones for our guests to throw.

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A number of sweet jars, fir cones, acorns, tree bark and tins decorated with hessian, containing flowers were also dotted about the venue. I seemed to tie bows of twine to everything and made hundreds of birdcage labels, but it was all worth it in the end!  Dreamweavers Weddings were invaluable in helping us to create the look we wanted.

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We opted for a cheese celebration cake as we much prefer cheese to cake. It also fitted in nicely with the rustic feel of the wedding and went down really well with the guests who almost ate the entire thing!

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We used Olive Tree Catering for our wedding breakfast and evening selection. The food they serve is of such a high standard and completely delicious we simply HAD to have them on our big day.

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For the evening reception we booked the very talented Kurt Davies, who entertained us with two live sets performing songs we had chosen and a disco. The dance floor was NEVER empty!  We also had props available for guests to play about with which lead to some hilarious photos being taken.

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We honeymooned in Florence Italy, very soon after the wedding. It was a wonderful place to begin our married life.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is that if you want lots of DIY elements at your wedding you need to start asap as it will definitely take longer than think. I would also recommend that you book an excellent photographer (like ours!) and get a video camera to capture the day, as once its all over it’s those are the things you will treasure most – along with your lovely new spouse!

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HEARTCongratulations Natasha & Kevin! HEART

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Would you like to see your big day featured on the wedding blog?  Here’s how

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  – Images © 2013 Kanashay Photography

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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As Lucky As We Are! A Real Wedding In The North East – Carly & Daniel

November 27th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Wynyard Hall Wedding by GS Studios

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We are staying in the North East this morning with this breath-taking Real Wedding at Wynyard Hall, sent to me by Brides Up North Featured Supplier Gemma of GS Studio and gorgeous real bride Carly.

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Carly and Daniel chose a classic colour scheme for their elegant celebration and let their stunning venue, chic sense of style and tasteful details lead the way.  Stunning.   

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Carly says: Daniel proposed at Edinburgh Castle on 31st October 2009 and we were married on 22nd September 2012 at Wynyard Hall Chapel and Wynyard Hall. 

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Danny proposed in Edinburgh and it is one of our favourite places to visit so we chose the city as our theme. Our table plan was set around Edinburgh- the top table was the Castle and all the other tables were our favourite landmarks in Edinburgh.  We chose a romantic colour scheme of sage green and gun metal grey. 

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For my wedding dress, I chose a Ronald Joyce design called Dakota from Christabel & Keats in Hartlepool and I carried a bouquet containing roses, orchids and eucalyptus by Valerie Rose.  I really let my florist go to town and just asked for seasonal flowers to tie in with our colour scheme.    

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My bridesmaids wore mid length strapless sage green dresses from Coast, and they looked gorgeous!

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I enjoyed the whole day from beginning to end: I loved entering the church to see everyone, and saying my vows to Daniel. I also had a fantastic time dancing the night away in the evening. I didn’t want it to be over!

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We chose Wynyard Hall as is a stunning place, location and excellent service.  On the day, they had some help in dressing the event from Ivory White Events who were responsible for the chair covers and table coverings and Papercraft who provided our wedding stationery. 

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I didn’t pay for a professional videographer, however we bought a camcorder and we asked someone to record the day. It was brilliant looking back and seeing bits that you may have missed.

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Instead of a message book we had a chalk board where people could write their messages for us.  Gemma from GS Studio will then put these into an album for us.  It’s a fun and surprising alternative to a guest book and we have some great messages to read through (some funny, some wise…)

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Daniel’s father sang some old songs with his guitar during our wedding breakfast, and my sister (chief bridesmaid, Stephanie) sang some modern love songs after our first dance to kick the evening party off. We also had a casino as part of our entertainment.

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After the wedding we honeymooned for four nights in Las Vegas, then we flew to Cancun, Mexico for  eight nights – complete bliss!

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be just to relax and enjoy every minute of it!

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HEARTCongratulations Carly & Daniel! HEART

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North. 

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  – Images © 2012 GS Studio 

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