Charlotte Balbier

cool britannia. a red, white and blue, fifties inspired wedding at east riddlesden hall – fiona & james

November 24th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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Today’s couple took the ‘my way’ approach to their wedding by picking a theme and colour scheme that reflected their passions and interests.

Without a hint of pink to be seen, James and Fiona opted for a cool Britannia style wedding with a red, white and blue colour scheme and attire inspired by fashions of the 50’s and 60’s.

Bride Fiona, pulls off the look perfectly in a sweet tea-length dress, faux fur shrug and vintage birdcage veil, while her bridesmaids remain on form in striking red Vivian of Holloway dresses. We must also give a mention to the cute flower girls who look super-angelic in their twirly dresses!

With images by Eye of the Tyne Photography

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fiona says: We got engaged on holiday in Northumberland. James grandparents were from there and after they passed away his mum bought a caravan so we would go a couple of times a year. One of our favourite places to go was Druridge Bay, which is a very pretty with lots of sand dunes, so on Easter weekend last year James and I decided on a little trip there, although the weather forecast was a bit ominous James insisted we go and made me walk up the biggest sand dune, even though I was wearing slippery boots and at one point I wanted to turn back but he pulled me up to the top. We then took some pictures and as I turned around he was on one knee.

Our wedding was on the 19th June 2016. We thought about June or September and our venue had a Sunday free in June which would be easier for my family to travel up from London the day before. When we booked it we didn’t actually realise it was Father’s Day until we sent out our invitations, but maybe this day had chosen us, as both myself and James’ father were not present at the wedding, James due his father passing away when he was a child and mine due to ill health, so it was a fitting tribute!

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We got married at East Riddlesden Hall in Keighley, West Yorkshire. Their barn is a beautiful Grade II listed building. Our original idea was that we wanted to get married in the Yorkshire dales where we camp every year and looked into hiring a yurt, but the logistics were too complicated and as I had family and friends coming from London we decided on somewhere a bit closer to home. The barn was ideal as we could decorate it ourselves, and the backdrop was stunning for photographs.

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We had a 50’s/ 60’s cool Britannia theme for the wedding. Both myself and James love 60’s music and I also love the fashion of the 50’s and 60’s so it was pretty much a given we would have some element in our wedding. We decided on a cover of Love is All Around, for the wedding march and played the Beatles and the Kinks during the register signing. My dress and bridesmaids were 50’s inspired and James’ shirt and suit was 60’s inspired.

Our wedding colour scheme was red, white and blue, so a bit different to the usual pinks. We wanted colours that reflect our own tastes and we also wanted vibrant colours that would stand out.

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As soon as I started planning the wedding I knew I wanted a tea length dress. I have always liked vintage styles and had a couple of 50’s style dresses so knew that it suits my body shape and height. I did search several local bridal shops and looked at specific designers who did tea length dresses and ended up going to four or five different shops but each dress I tried I found either I didn’t like part of the dress or the material wasn’t right. Eventually I found a lovely shop called Wedding Belles of Otley. They had already selected a few dresses for me to try on, including one that and been designed as a bridesmaid dress but I was assured that lots of brides had chosen it as their wedding dress, although the colour was pink they also did it in ivory. As soon as I tried it on it was exactly what I wanted; lace bodice and satin skirt with buttons down the back, perfect!

I also like to accessorize and found the perfect  accompaniment  with  a feather  shrug  and  vintage style shoes from BHS. I didn’t think a long veil would suit the style of my dress so bought a plain birdcage veil and a lovely feathered clip from Debenhams, which matched very well with my shrug.

For my bridal hair and makeup, I used Le Keux Vintage Styling, who were great!

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laidback love. a fun & rustic wedding at haslington hall – stevie & christopher

November 17th, 2016 | Laura McDonagh

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Today’s real wedding is a feast for the eyes. There was a sumptuous naked cake, bucket loads of petal confetti and plenty of fun and frolics in the venue’s jaw-dropping grounds.

Flowers were key in creating the bride’s rustic theme and reflecting her outdoorsy lifestyle, with Stevie donning a floral crown and the couple exchanging vows below a stunning wildflower arch.

If you adore all things laidback and lovey-dovey, this one’s definitely for you.

Photography by Brides Up North Sponsor, ER Photography.

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stevie says: We got engaged at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival – our favourite place – in August 2014. Christopher woke me up on our last morning with my Grandma Betty’s engagement ring and both of us were in tears by the time he’d got to “Will you marry me?”

We arranged our wedding for 23rd July 2016. We wanted an outdoor wedding and hoped that July would do it weather-wise!

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Our venue was the beautiful Haslington Hall, in Crewe. We chose our venue as it was an enormous and totally gorgeous Tudor hall (Christopher is doing a history PhD), and it had a marquee which I wanted for the wedding breakfast, plus it had beautiful grounds too. What really swayed it was that the wedding coordinator at the time (Sian Hopwood) was extremely friendly and laid-back about all of our arrangements. She was enthusiastic about having an outdoor ceremony, coming up with a vegetarian menu with two options per course and possibly even involving my little horse, Galaxy.

Our theme was rustic, relaxed and fun – just like the two of us! We wanted a country-style wedding to match my horsey lifestyle with plenty of wildflowers but at the same time wanted to maximise the fun for our guests (we’re big children at heart) with a sweetie table, photo booth and plenty of games, including space hoppers (adult and child-sized), bubbles, wind-up toys and lots of outdoor games.

Our colour scheme of pastel tones was rustic-inspired. We weren’t particularly fussed about specific shades as long as they were natural – the more varied the better!

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I always wanted to look like a princess on my wedding day with classic lace and sparkles but didn’t want to pay an extortionate price for a custom-made dress. After trying on all sorts of gowns from slinky, tight-fitting numbers to full-on ball gowns all over the country we found a bridal outlet shop two streets away from us, The Wedding Dress & Prom Dress Outlet, Stockport. I settled on a gorgeous ivory A-line gown that was everything I wanted; it even drew a genuine ‘wow’ from one of my maids of honour. This was paired with an absolutely stunning pastel wildflower crown from Flowers by Briege and a cathedral length veil with small lace/sparkle appliques from Boutique Alterations, where I had my dress fitted. I bought some beautiful ivory heels with pearl ankle ties from Amazon for the day and some squashy ivory slippers from John Lewis for the evening – this turned out to be a very good idea indeed!

Sarah Meredith was my incredible hair and makeup artist on the day of the wedding. She understood that my bridesmaids and I wanted a natural look and made us feel so relaxed on the morning of the big day. She was extremely creative, even weaving leftover flowers into the bridesmaids’ hair.

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To fit our country theme, Christopher bought a beautiful dark blue Ted Baker tweed suit from Slaters, Manchester, teaming it with a pastel blue cravat and brown shoes.

We let the bridesmaids and groomsmen have free reign over their outfits and choose any colour or style they wanted. My four bridesmaids settled on three different shades/styles of pastel blue dresses and a very dapper black suit and blue shirt for the fourth bridesmaid, Emily. She had the most awesome blue and grey brogues too!

Our groomsmen wore different shades blue and grey, all with a pastel blue tie or cravat.  The groomsmen also wore different superhero cufflinks as the heroes of the day.

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roses & romance. a pretty blush pink wedding at the belle epoque – kate & dan

November 1st, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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This afternoon’s real wedding took place at the stunning Belle Epoque boutique hotel in the gorgeous town of Knutsford, Cheshire, where we just so happen to be holding one of our fabulous Luxury Wedding Fairs THIS SUNDAY. So ladies, if you like what you see register here to attend the event, which will feature some of the area’s very finest wedding suppliers whilst showcasing the unique venue! We’ll be open 11am to 3pm and it’s free entry for all, so be sure to bring along the groom, maids and parents too!

We love that today’s bride and groom styled the venue with pretty rustic details and delicate blush blooms, perfectly demonstrating how The Belle Epoque’s spectacular spaces work beautifully with a variety of different themes and colour schemes.

Now, on with the pretty…

With images by Kate Williams Photography.

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kate says: We got engaged in August 2014. We were on a road trip through California. We had just climbed to the top of a waterfall in Yosemite and that’s where Dan popped the question!

Our wedding date was 6th August 2016. Dan is a teacher so we wanted it during the summer holidays, we were also hoping for a warm day, and luckily we had great weather!

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We had a church ceremony in Warrington, followed by a reception at The Belle Epoque, in Knutsford. We chose The Belle Epoque as we loved all the décor and it has a beautiful terrace to sit out on. The hotel is also yours for the day, we liked that it was private.

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We went with a rustic theme for the wedding. We made our invitations using Kraft card and carried this theme through in terms of the table plan and favours etc. We also had logs on the tables, which were underneath crates made by my dad that were holding flowers.

The colour scheme was blush pink and creams, with the groomsmen in navy blue. I had seen lots of flowers I really liked in blush pink and thought it was the perfect colour for the time of year.

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vintage vows. a picturesque wedding in the lake district – sabine & steven

October 18th, 2016 | Laura McDonagh

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The vintage-themed real wedding that we’re sharing today features spectacular views, a relaxed and rustic vibe and a big ol’ slice of pretty.

As well as being mesmerised by the beauty of this wedding it’s also given me a new life goal: to taste a big ol’ slice of pink lemonade cake. Yes, you read that right – pink lemonade cake! What could be more wonderful on an autumnal Tuesday morning?

Photographs by Jenny Winstone Photography.

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sabine says: We got engaged at home on Christmas Eve, 2014. Steven cooked us a three course meal and told me that I could open one of my Christmas gifts a day early. I was so excited that I couldn’t wait until we’d finished so he let me open it after the first course. As I tore off the wrapping paper I saw a ring box. He projected a picture of our little boy onto our television screen with the words “Say yes, Mummy” above it, then he got down onto one knee.

Steven has always been one for grand romantic gestures but, as this was our first family Christmas with our six-month-old son Thomas, it really was just perfect. I was quite unwell following complications after childbirth so the fact he wanted to marry me at such a difficult time really meant the world to me; I knew he would be there for us, for better and for worse.

Our wedding date was Sunday 14th August 2016. We chose this date because we love summer, we wanted a weekend and all the Saturdays that month were booked up so we decided a Sunday would work really well.

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We got married at The Inn on the Lake: a beautiful hotel with the most spectacular views overlooking Lake Ullswater, in Glenridding, in the Lake District. We love the Lake District, it’s a very special place for us and we love how we can drive an hour-and-a-half from our hectic city life in Manchester and feel a world away with breath-taking views and a more relaxed pace of life.

We were lucky that the weather allowed us to get married outside under the gazebo overlooking the lake. There was also a separate building for the evening reception with a recent and very impressive extension called The Ramblers Bar and Candleroom. We loved the fact that, although our wedding took place at one venue, there were different buildings, sections and huge, stunning grounds.

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Theme-wise, our wedding theme was a romantic summer wedding with a vintage vibe. We knew that the surroundings of our wedding venue would provide a romantic feel, plus I love anything and everything vintage and I’m incredibly girly.

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fun on the farm. a festival themed wedding in cheshire – becky & jim

September 23rd, 2016 | Rachel Parry

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Today’s bride and groom should be awarded some kind of medal for the amount of time and effort that they put into the preparations for their beautiful homemade festival wedding.

Taking place in a lambing shed on the family farm, Becky and Jim roped in lots of family and friends to help transform the space from a sparse barn into a chic rustic backdrop for their big day celebrations.

We just love all the thoughtful and fitting touches that added to their unique day; from a tractor ride to the reception and all the personal décor and entertainment choices, to the fabulous hay bale bride and groom. Seriously guys, nice work!

With images by Lois Photography.

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becky says: We got engaged in Reykjavik on New Year’s Eve 2013. Jim had arranged a trip there as a Christmas present – even corresponding with my boss so that I could have the time off work. He proposed at midnight whilst we were standing watching the fireworks outside Hallgrimskirkja Cathedral.

Our wedding date was 18th July 2015. We held our reception at Jim’s parents’ farm (in the lambing shed) so we had to choose a date when lambing time would be over, and which gave us a good couple of weeks to get the place ready!

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We had the ceremony at Heaton House Farm in Cheshire, which I’d highly recommend to others. It was perfect for us as we knew we didn’t want a church as neither of us are religious, and we didn’t want a registry office either. Finding somewhere that we could just turn up, get married and go again did prove to be quite difficult as a lot of places expect you to have the whole day there. We initially spoke to Mick from Heaton House at a wedding fair and knew pretty much straight away that the venue was right for us. It’s a working farm as well as a wedding venue, so it made perfect sense!

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As Jim and I huge music fans and have been to countless gigs and festivals during the ten years that we’ve been together, the wedding was always going to be very music focussed. I work at a creative agency, so luckily had a team of excellent graphic designers on hand to design the wedding stationery exactly as I wanted it. Our save the date cards were designed to look like gig tickets, and the music theme just rolled from there.

We borrowed two huge speakers from a friend, and spent months compiling different Spotify playlists to play throughout the day. For example, the music playing whilst everyone arrived at the farm for the reception was a selection of different bands that we’ve seen together, so it was pretty diverse! It went from Fleetwood Mac to Wild Beasts to Bon Iver, so whilst it wasn’t ‘traditional wedding music’ it had a very special significance to us – and it did get a little bit more mainstream for the evening to make sure the dancefloor was full!

Because we had so much space to play with, we decided to use one of the fields for people to camp in, which then led us onto a festival theme. I think there was around 30 tents in all – including one for us!

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I was never really bothered about a set colour scheme. People kept asking me about it and telling me I should have one, but it didn’t ever seem like something that was necessary to our plans. I suppose the colour palette was more pastel shades than anything, but really, as long as the colours complemented each other, I wasn’t that fussy!

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orange is the new ivory. a fun-filled wedding at quarry bank mill – zoe & chris

September 23rd, 2016 | Julia Braime

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There are smiles galore in today’s real wedding which took place in the beautiful village of Styal in Cheshire.

Falling head-over-heels for the quaint yet industrial feel of the area, Zoe and Chris set about planning their dream country village wedding, complete with chapel ceremony and mill reception.

Giving a nod to the venue’s history, sewing machines and bobbins formed part of the charming décor that was finished off with wonderful wildflower arrangements in glass bottles and jars.

From beginning to end this day looks to be full of love and laughter, with the entertainment including live music, face painting and photo booth fun!

With images by Stephen Rooney Photography.

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zoe says: The decision to get married came about after Chris and I had been on a few walks and cycles around Styal village, Cheshire, and had commented on what a lovely place it would be to get married. Upon deciding on which venues we would hold the wedding at, we made contact with the relevant people to find that they only had a limited number of dates available, and so after a quick discussion, we booked it! A couple of months later Chris presented me with an engagement ring while I was in bed having a lay in on my day off. It was just before we went out for a walk to watch the solar eclipse!

We set the date for 23rd April 2016, as it was one of the few spring dates that the venue had left. We knew that we wanted to be outdoors a lot, and would walk across the village and the fields from the chapel to the reception venue on the wedding day. We also hoped to have our welcome drinks outdoors in the lovely gardens and so we needed a day with at least a chance of being dry and warm!

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Our ceremony was at Norcliffe Chapel, followed by a reception at Quarry Bank Mill. We chose this location because it’s such a beautiful setting that we’ve grown quite attached to with living nearby.

We wanted to celebrate the setting of the mill and the workers village vibe, and so we kept an industrial theme in mind throughout the wedding planning. This made it quite easy to find inspirational images, although we already had so much in mind after walking around the area and inside the mill a few times.

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Our colour scheme was orange and navy. Orange is my favourite colour and though I initially thought it might be a bit too much for a wedding, we felt the navy was a nice contrast and stopped the orange from being too garish.

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