Charlotte Balbier

a fine vintage. a pretty wedding at eshott hall – katie & phil

April 14th, 2015 | Julia Braime

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (54)

The vintage theme has been popular with wedding couples of late and so we’re used to seeing wonderful weddings featuring this styling landing in the Brides Up North inbox. However, there was something about today’s couple’s wedding that made it stand out that bit more than others – it was pretty (oh so pretty) but it was also personal.

Rather than hiring all the décor from one company to achieve the desired kitsch look, bride Katie rolled up her sleeves (and also called upon those closest to her) to help create beautiful handmade detailing that made the day feel all the more special.

Two stars of the show were Katie and Phil’s mums who sound like they could give Kirstie Allsopp a run for her money when it comes to crafting skills.

Enjoy the pretty…

With images by Katie Byram Photography.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (4)

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (8)

katie says: It was our three year anniversary and also the day we had our offer accepted to buy our first home in London when Phil proposed to me. We were at home having a celebratory meal. I was half way through my chocolate pudding when Philip said he had a surprise for me. When he got down on one knee I couldn’t stop laughing! But eventually managed to say “yes”. I didn’t suspect a thing so was definitely very surprised!

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (10)

We set the date for 9th August 2014. No particular reason, but we chose August as we thought that it would be the least likely time of year to rain in the North East. It actually did still rain on the day, but definitely didn’t ruin anything.

We got married at St Mary’s Church in Morpeth. I went to this church when I was growing up so it meant a lot to me to get married there.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (13)

We chose Eshott Hall as our reception venue. We loved Eshott from the moment we walked in the door on our visit there. We knew from the start that we wanted a venue that could offer us exclusivity. The thing we loved about Eshott was that although it is a beautiful building in itself, it also offered us the opportunity to be really creative and to decorate it as we wanted. We would highly recommend the venue to other wedding couples, we absolutely loved it!

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (25)

We had a vintage theme, but wanted to be able to add a personal touch. Both of our mums are very creative and helped to make lots of decorations for the venue. My mum sewed the beautiful floral and lace bunting, cushions with our initials on and lace chair sashes. Philip’s mum meanwhile was very busy making all of our vintage style stationery, including the invitations, place tags, table plan, table names, confetti cones and guestbook.

We chose pretty pastel colours and flowery patterns for the main reception room to accompany our theme.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (23)

After trying on about 50 dresses in all different styles, I knew what kind of dress I definitely didn’t want but still didn’t have a clear idea of what I did want! I visited YAP in Newcastle and instantly fell in love with the first dress I tried on. I loved the simplicity of the skirt and the lace detail. Once the decision had been made, Jo at YAP popped open a bottle of fizz so that I could celebrate with my mum, mother-in-law and auntie – a really special moment. I added a sash with a vintage flower which was made by Anne at Diva Designs and wore Rachel Simpson shoes in a design called Katie.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (17)

Philip and the groomsmen wore light grey suits from Slaters with Northumberland Tartan waistcoats from The Northumberland Tartan Company.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (22)

My bridesmaids were four of my best friends from school and they wore pale pink Button Belle dresses from YAP with floral sashes and shoe clips made by Anne at Diva Designs.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (32)

For transport we chose a silver Bentley hired from Sunderland Wedding Cars. The bridesmaids travelled in a mint green campervan from AllCool Classic VW Camper Hire. We also hired a vintage bus from Weardale Company for our guests to travel on from the church to the reception venue.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (52)

Katie Byram was our wedding photographer. She was amazing and photographed the day perfectly. She has a very natural style, capturing candid moments, which was exactly what we wanted. We would highly recommend her.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (60)

Lavenders Blue in Morpeth provided my bouquet and the bridesmaids’ bouquets too. We were keen for the flowers to look quite wild and natural, which Lavenders Blue achieved beautifully. I also had sprigs of feverfew (daisies) pushed into the plait in my hair.

Lavenders Blue provided flowers for the table decorations and we hired candelabras and vintage china teacups and saucers from Lavenders Blue too. We hired birdcages from The Finishing Touch Company and our vintage side plates were hired from Flawless Weddings & Events in Morpeth.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (33)

We added pink and mint green pom poms to the trees outside of the venue, made by Flawless Weddings & Events. They looked amazing and really magical. Flawless also provided jars and scoops for our sweetie table.

We went to auctions and charity shops in the local area to collect the beautiful lace and embroidered table clothes we used. My bridesmaids and I also spent an afternoon decorating small glass candle holders and jam jars with offcuts of material, old jewellery, buttons and hessian. I love that they added a really personal touch to the tables. On the day we used vintage photo frames as holders for our table names, which I love and will use to display our wedding photographs around our home.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (59)

For favours we gave out British Heart Foundation pin badges.

Dreamworld Cakes made our pretty cupcake cake in pastel colours while all the other food and drink was provided by Eshott Hall.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (65)

Colin Cook was a fantastic DJ on our wedding day, keeping all our guests entertained. We chose a mixture of our favourite tunes – mainly 90s pop! It was really important to us that the children we invited to our wedding were a special part of the day. To keep them entertained during the speeches we put together colouring books, soft toys and bubbles into canvas backpacks with their names on.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (63)

For some extra entertainment we hired a photo booth from Smiley Booth. I would definitely recommend this company. One strip of photographs was stuck into our guestbook so that our guests could write messages next to them and the guests could take the second strip home as a memento of the day. They’re hilarious and we love looking back over them to remind us of the day.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (68)

My favourite part of the day was walking into the church and seeing Philip’s face. Philip’s cousin is a professional musician and played Canon in D on the viola as I walked down the aisle. It was a beautiful moment, although I did cry most of way down!

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (78)

For our honeymoon we went to Santorini and stayed at Absolute Bliss in Imerovigli, a small boutique hotel with a beautiful view over the sea and cliffs. It is a lovely island and we would definitely recommend it.

a pretty vintage wedding at Eshott Hall (c) Katie Byram Photography (77)

My top tip to other Brides Up North would be that making some of the venue decorations and wedding stationery yourself is a great way to add a personal touch to the day and to save a bit of money. Collect some pieces of pretty material, pop open the fizz and get creative!

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crisp & classy. enzoani for a romantic wedding with scottish touches at eaves hall – melissa & stuart

April 7th, 2015 | Julia Braime

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (41)

I love the simple elegance of today’s real wedding set within the grandeur of Eaves Hall in the North West.

The fabulous venue won over bride-to-be Melissa in seconds, and looking at the images below it’s easy to see why. Keen to keep things fresh and classy, Melissa worked with talented suppliers to accomplish her vision with pale pretty blooms, ornate candelabras and twinkling fairy lights.

In addition to the setting, the couple themselves looked stunning with Melissa opting for a gorgeous fishtail gown while her hubby-to-be (and his merry men) donned kilts for the occasion. We do hope it wasn’t a blustery day!

With images by Brides Up North Featured Supplier, Karli Harrison Photography.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (7)

melissa says: We got engaged in York, in April 2013. We had been out for a lovely meal and when we got back to our hotel Stuart got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I wasn’t totally surprised as Stuart knows how fussy I am, so had asked me to pick out a ring a couple of weeks before!

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (12)

We got married on 13th September 2014. The reason for picking this particular date was that we had originally planned to get married in 2015, so when we started looking at venues they were quite booked up for 2014 dates. I went to go and look at Eaves Hall in Clitheroe and completely fell in love with it, and they had a date in September free so with a little persuasion I convinced Stuart to bring the date forward.

I had been browsing venues online but hadn’t come across anywhere with the ‘wow’ factor. Eaves Hall was the first venue we looked at and it ticked every box, it was slightly further away from home than we had planned but everything else more than compensated for it. The venue is absolutely beautiful. I would highly recommend it.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (17)

We didn’t go for a theme as such, I just wanted everything to be fresh and classy. Stuart is Scottish so he wanted the groomsmen to wear kilts but other than that we just went with what we liked. The venue is a theme within itself so we just added in extra touches to make it personal to ourselves.

I chose sage green for the bridesmaids dresses but didn’t choose to use this colour scheme throughout the wedding. For everything I chose to use ivory with pearl accents.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (8)

I chose a fishtail dress by Enzoani from Dreamcatcher Designer Bridal Wear in Kirkham. I had tried on a dress that was a lot fuller but didn’t feel comfortable in it. As I am quite tall I chose the more fitted dress that puffed out at the bottom, which still made it feel like a ‘wedding dress’ but was more flattering to my shape. My veil had a scalloped lace edge and I also wore a diamanté belt to enhance the shape of the dress.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (26)

As I mentioned, Stuart is originally from Scotland so it was important to him to have the men in kilts. At first I was dubious but when I saw them on the day they all looked fab. We chose to hire the kilts from Slaters menswear. Stuart chose to wear a black shirt with an ivory tie so that he was different to the groomsmen that wore black kilts with white shirts and sage ties.

My bridesmaids wore Grecian style dresses in sage green, also from Dreamcatcher. It was purely by chance that all the dresses were set out in each style but only shown in certain colours. My bridesmaid Natalie pulled this particular one off the rail and the style and colour was perfect – that pretty much set the tone for the style of the rest of the wedding. I then picked nude shoes and diamante drop earrings. My hair was done by Becky at Kre8 Hair and Beauty, and makeup by Olivia Naylor. They are both perfectionists and made everyone look gorgeous.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (22)

Karli Harrison was the photographer we chose. I had researched quite a few before we decided on Karli. A friend of my mum had used her for her daughter’s wedding and she highly recommended her. We looked at her pictures and knew straight away that Karli’s style was perfect for our big day.

We also used Abbey Videos to video the whole day. I’m so glad we captured the day on film as there is so much that you miss and don’t take in.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (36)

I carried a bouquet of hydrangeas, white roses, lily of the valley and various other white flowers. These were supplied by Jane at Flower Design in Blackpool, who I also can’t recommend highly enough. I originally wanted a bouquet with just white roses but when Jane made me up a sample and said she thought I would prefer this – she wasn’t wrong. She also recommended perfume and moisturiser to compliment the scent of the flowers.

We used the same flowers in my bouquet but a smaller version for the bridesmaids and flower girl. My bouquet and the bridesmaids also doubled up as top table flower display whilst we had our wedding breakfast. It looked so different yet classy which I was really impressed with. Jane also provided two trees either side of the main entrance with white roses entwined into them and candelabras for the table displays which were decorated with the same flowers used in my bouquet. Jane picked up on the Scottish heritage and incorporated thistle in the button holes for Stuart’s side of the family and the groomsmen. She also took into account what people were wearing and designed them individual button holes which I thought was a really nice touch.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (43)

I was particularly anxious about the venue being dressed enough and so used Add a Little Sparkle to help with this. I explained to them the theme I liked and they showed me pictures of previous weddings they had done at Eaves Hall that were similar to my theme. I chose the fairy light curtain and they also provided chair covers, swag for the top table and lanterns down the aisle. Between the team at Flower Design and ‘Mr and Mrs Sparkle’ every last detail was accounted for, down to a rose petals arranged in a heart shape at the end of the aisle.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (45)

We provided a free bar for all the guests, day and night, so we decided that we weren’t going to do anything too extravagant for the favours as we were sure our guests would be more than happy with the drinks flowing! So as a little touch we got everybody a scratch card. I got some beautiful cards made that just simply said ‘good luck’ on the front then inside a little message to say ‘thank you for sharing our day love Mr and Mrs Naismith’. For the children I got some personalised colouring books to keep them entertained, which I got off eBay. They came in various colours and designs, the one I picked matched our theme perfectly.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (50)

A lady that I work with makes the most delicious chocolate cakes, she really is wasted working in an office! So when it came to the cake I knew it was going to have to be one of Lesley’s cakes. We had four tiers, the bottom was chocolate and then alternated between that and lemon. She decorate it perfectly for us, it was a shame we had to cut it!

The thing I liked about the food at Eaves Hall was that you could give your guests a choice of meals. We went to a tasting event in the April before the wedding which was really good. They set out the room as it would be when you have your wedding breakfast and they brought out one of each meal for your group to try, I was stuffed when we left! It was also good to mingle with other people that were getting married there to swap ideas and experiences. After much deliberation (because it was all so good) we opted for either Cajun salmon starter or chicken and pancetta Caesar salad, then the choice of either roast chicken or roast lamb, then for dessert lemon tart or chocolate torte. Everything was delicious and well received!

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (51)

Choosing the entertainment was a really big thing for me as I felt like it could make or break the day. I actually booked a couple of people then changed my mind. After hearing a local singer called James Edgar performing, I knew I had to have him at the wedding. He sings with just a guitar and puts his own twist on modern and classic hits, which he performed during the ceremony and wedding breakfast. In between the ceremony and wedding breakfast, the Northern String Quartet played whilst the guests had drinks and canapés. We were so lucky with the weather, so they were able to play outside. For me I think that was one of the highlights of the day,

Then for the evening reception we had the Ian Hooper Band. They were absolutely brilliant! Everybody was dancing the night away. To get everyone in the swing of things they came into the bar with their guitars and got the guests stood on their chairs singing and dancing. They even finished the night off with a Queen sing-song round the grand piano which everyone absolutely loved. We also had a photo booth for the guests which was good fun and we got all the pictures on a memory stick, which was hilarious to look at the next day.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (47)

I can’t take credit for this as it was my mum’s idea but we had fire eaters to greet the evening guests. Everyone said how different the idea was and we also got some really good pictures of it!

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (56)

I would definitely recommend our venue, not just for how it looks, but for the whole experience. Hayley oversaw the day and she made us both feel so at ease, nothing was too much trouble for her.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (58)

It’s hard to pick an exact favourite part of the day as I loved every minute of it – I have different favourite parts for different reasons! But everyone singing round the piano was such fun and everyone was talking about it for weeks after.

a classic wedding at Eaves Hall (c) Karli Harrison Photography (59)

We went for a short break to Mallorca the week after the wedding. It was lovely to just chill after a year of planning! We said we were going to go on a proper honeymoon this year but we are expecting a baby in May so have decided to go to New York in December and treat that as our honeymoon.

A top tip to other Brides Up North is don’t stress about the small details too much! I spent so much time worrying about various things that I didn’t really need to worry about as everything falls into place on the day, but my main tip would be to get the day filmed.

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catch of the day. a home made wedding at the alnwick garden – jancis & casey

January 21st, 2015 | Julia Braime

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (46)

Jancis and Casey’s choice of wedding venue was all about the memories – a special place that they could share with their friends and family on their special day and for years to come.

It’s one of our favourite venues here at Brides Up North HQ too and you can join us for our beautiful wedding exhibition here in April, but for now, let’s celebrate Jancis and Casey’s ‘catch of the day’.

With images by Lissa Alexandra Photography.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (34)

jancis says: Just after we met Casey promised that he would one day take me to Rome. Three years later we still hadn’t made it so while we were planning what to do for our anniversary I decided to have a look at flights. I never thought they would be reasonably priced but it worked out less than we could have spent on petrol if we had stayed in the UK. I floated the idea to Casey and with one thought of pizza and Peroni he was sold! We booked the tickets and off we went to a destination I had only dreamed of!

After three days seeing the amazing sights and eating fabulous food it was our third anniversary. We spent the day doing all the things we had wanted to do. We went to Castel Sant’angelo in the morning which had the most spectacular views of the Vatican City. Then walked down to watch the Pope hold his service and went up to St Peters Basillica. Casey had thought about proposing at the top but after the 320 steps and around 100 other people squeezed up there he decided against it.

After spending most of the day on our feet we decided to go back to the hotel room for a rest and to get ready for a lovely meal to celebrate our anniversary. We got all dressed up in our best clothes and Casey asked me to open a bottle of prosecco. We toasted three years together and Casey sat me down on the edge of the bed and started talking about how thankful he was and how much he had enjoyed the past three years. Before I knew it he was down on one knee asking me to marry him. I didn’t need to think about it the words just spilled out: “Of course I will!”

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (40)

We were married on 25th May 2014. We chose this date as it was a bank holiday Sunday and we were asking our guests to travel from far and wide across the UK and the world to celebrate with us. We knew this would mean most of them wouldn’t need to take too much time off work, if any at all, or like us, they would be able to make the celebration into a week long holiday.

We were married at The Alnwick Garden, It is one of our favourite places to visit. Casey first took me there on a spur of the moment weekend away. I has been having a really hard time at work and got home one Friday night to him looking up b&b’s in Northumberland, a place I’d never been. He whisked me away to Warkworth, a village we have both now fallen in love with, for the weekend and decided to make the trip the gardens for the day. We both love that it is a charity, run by donations from other people who love to visit and enjoy the flowers and of course the fountain.

We wanted a venue where we felt like we were contributing to the local community and somewhere in the future we will be able to take our children and relive our special day.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (42)

We had been to a wedding in America the year before where the bride and groom had their first look before the ceremony. The photos were very personal and it meant that they got to spend their cocktail hour with their guests. Casey and I decided to do the same. Around 3 miles from our venue is a beach where we have spent a lot of time. We decided to head down there before the ceremony and have a first look moment. We took our wedding party to the beach and one of the bridesmaids cleared the area for us. A group of people started forming so it wasn’t the most intimate moment however it felt special and we will always have the memories of that moment.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (43)

The style we went for came from the venue we chose. The Garden is full of bright colours and earthy tones so we chose green, white and brown for our wedding colours inspired by the plants, the water and the hessian sacks the compost came in. Then when I found my dress I knew we had to include lace in the wedding and it added that much needed feminine touch to our plans.

We brought the garden inside with our centre pieces which we made ourselves, in fact almost all of the decorations were made by us. The table squares were hand cut and the lace added by Casey, the centre piece boxes were made by Casey, painted by me and planted together (the flowers from each box are now planted in gardens around the UK!), the bunting was homemade, the signs were homemade and even the favours too!

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (44)

Less than a month after we were engaged I spotted a dress in Debenhams and decided to try it on just for fun. As soon as I put it on I felt beautiful and graceful (something I’m usually not!) and with the manageable price tag I bought it there and then. When I returned home I excitedly called my mum, unfortunately she was fairly disappointed she hadn’t been there so insisted she take me shopping with my bridesmaids so I could have the wedding dress shopping experience every mother dreams of having with her daughter. I agreed but told her I wouldn’t find one I liked as much.

On the day it felt like I tried on every dress in the shop so the lady who was helping me asked for three words to describe what I was looking for, “elegant, fishtail and lacy” I replied. The lady wouldn’t let me look in the mirror as she dressed me so when I walked out of the dressing room I hadn’t seen what I looked like. All of my bridesmaids were speechless and my mum burst into tears. A pretty good reaction when you don’t know what you’re wearing!

Unfortunately the dress was strapless and I didn’t like that feature so for the next half hour the shop assistants brought me lace, ribbon and readymade straps to try on with it. None felt right so I came away with just the dress and a strange feeling in the pit of my stomach that even though it was the one, it wasn’t. It took me another 12 months to find the right material to make straps but I loved them when I did.

I carried a gypsophila and hydrangea bouquet tied with brown string and green ribbon which matched my bridesmaids’ dresses. They were supplied by Simply Flowers of Alnwick.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (49)

Casey wore a grey silk suit from Slaters and green ties from Debenhams. It took months to find a green tie that matched the bridesmaid dresses. The groomsmen wore the same suits and ties.

My bridesmaids wore a long, strapless green chiffon dress which was bought over the internet from a specialist bridesmaid dress designer.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (24)

I knew the most important part of the wedding, apart from getting married of course, for me was the photographer. I am an amateur photographer myself and have photographed a few friends weddings so I knew that I wanted the best of the best to photograph my wedding. I first saw Lissa’s work at a wedding fair in Leeds and fell in love immediately and knew I had to have this person as my photographer. When Lissa came back to the stand she was so lovely and helpful we booked her there and then. Other than getting married in the first place it was the best decision we made!

She was fabulous in the run up to, on the day and afterwards. I would recommend her to anyone looking for a wedding photographer. My guests really enjoyed her company, she made everyone feel at ease and she captured moments that most people didn’t even notice happened. We couldn’t have asked for a better service!

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (19)

We spent the afternoon before the wedding with a select few of our guests dressing the venue so it was exactly how we wanted it to be. All the effort was worth it, we love how it turned out and the small touches are what our family and friends still talk about!

My brother has set up his own upcycling business and made our ceremony décor, the bulbs with flowers in where his own creation and beautiful they looked too!

We gave out mini shot bottles filled with flavoured vodka. Casey and I met while working at Revolution Bar in Lancaster. Casey was the assistant manager there and I was working on the bar so it felt appropriate to incorporate that into our wedding somehow. We bought the vodka from the actual vodka factory where Revolution make the different flavours of vodka that they sell in their bars and decanted it into smaller bottles. It went down a storm with most of the guests although some found the flavours a little strong for them!

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (4)

We chose a four layer cake: chocolate, lemon and raspberry, red velvet and fruit cake. All of which are our favourite flavours – we couldn’t choose between them. Our cake was made as a gift by Casey’s cousin Leanne. She is a professional cake maker and brought it all the way from Reading for us! She decorated it in a new style she hadn’t tried before for us so but I think you’ll agree she did an excellent job!

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (9)

We had been to a wedding a few years ago where they had a live band, after having a brilliant time we decided this was the way forward for us. We spent hours on the internet listening to previews of different bands and finally found a band that made us want to dance.

The Shakedown Band North East made our wedding incredibly special. They kept the dance floor full for the whole evening and we have had numerous people come to us asking for their contact details. We would highly recommend them for a great night of dancing!

Our bridesmaids and a few friends decided to surprise us with a flashmob! They recorded a video and sent it to various family members and friends. On the night they sat us down and on came the three bridesmaids singing the first lines to “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” gradually other people joined in and eventually the whole dance floor was filled with our nearest and dearest singing to us.

It was brilliant and the first moment I actually took stock of what the whole day meant to us. All we had wanted was to have the people we loved around us as we made a commitment to each other. Only when we saw how much effort they had gone through for us did we truly realise what they all meant to us.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (3)

The venue was stunning- in the day time you felt like you were part of the garden and in the evening with the venue and fountain lit up it felt like being transported into a fairy tale.

We enjoyed all the parts of the garden from the ornamental garden with its huge cast iron gates to the meadow of purple flowers and the castle turrets which make up the garden walls. Each area adds a different feature to the photographs we had taken and allowed our guests to take some time away from the festivities to explore.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (11)

My favourite part of the day was hammering the nails into our “Love letter Box”. A box filled with a bottle of wine we bought the day we were engaged and a love letter from each of us. We plan to only open the box if we get to the point of no return or on our 35th wedding anniversary.

Casey says his favourite part of the day was seeing me for the first time on the beach. He said it was a relief that I’d turned up and the first moment he felt calm all day.

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (18)

We went to Disney World in Florida for the first week of our honeymoon. We like to have fun so decided to “do Disney” one last time. The second week we spent at my aunt’s house in Clearwater, Florida relaxing – if you can call it that! We hired a car, played golf, went sightseeing up and down the coast, and ate out far too many times. The third week we went to the Kennedy Space Centre and Universal Studios.

We had a lot of fun but felt like we needed another holiday afterwards!

a vintage themed wedding at The Alnwick Garden (c) Lissa Alexandra Photography  (25)

Our top tip for other Brides Up North is to take ten minutes together during the evening reception to have a walk through the garden and have a drink together. One of our friends found me and told me to go and find Casey to do this – it was a brilliant tip and I would recommend this to anyone who is getting married. You are pulled in so many directions all day on your wedding day that spending a small amount of time with your husband to reflect on the day is invaluable.

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reader, i married him. a literary wedding in north wales – diane and aeddan

January 13th, 2015 | Julia Braime

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (81)

Like many people who write for a living, I’m also an avid reader, so I absolutely adore that Diane and Aeddan chose a literary theme for their beautiful Real Wedding in North Wales.

Their lovely literary wedding day was filled with pretty touches, personal details and themed surprises for their guests, but on a day filled with words, it’s really only three little ones that matter the most…

Diane and Aeddan seem to have the i love yous sorted.

Images by Daffodil Waves Photography.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (30)

dianne says: We got engaged in May 2013.  As a history teacher I love all things historic, so Aeddan surprised me with a weekend away for my birthday which included a visit to Harlech Castle where he proposed with a custom made necklace as he knew I wanted to pick my own ring.  We then spent the weekend at a beautiful country hotel.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (44)

We got married on 12th September 2014 at Nant Gwrtheryn, which is a restored quarrying village on the Llyn Peninsula in North Wales.  Its primary function is as a Welsh language centre but it also does functions.  We chose this venue because we wanted somewhere we could put our own mark upon.  We also loved the idea of having a wedding that lasted all weekend with everything including the chapel and the guest accommodation (in restored quarrymen’s cottages) all in one place.  Also, Aeddan is a Welsh speaker and I am English so we were able to have a bilingual wedding that brought our two cultures together.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (53)

Our theme was words, so we had our tables named after books that we both love and our place names were made from scrabble pieces.  As a favour each guest was given a personalised Penguin book cover postcard.  There were lots of other literary touches throughout the day.

We picked this theme because we both like reading and the theme evolved with the planning and took on a life of its own.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (63)

Our colour scheme was mint green and navy blue.  Navy blue was decided upon because I had two bridesmen who needed to be in different coloured suits to the groomsmen and mint green worked well with navy blue.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (67)

I had a lace Justin Alexander dress from Bridal Path in Liverpool.  I wanted a dress that I felt like the best version of myself in but that wasn’t too heavy so I could forget I was wearing it on the day.  As soon as I put my dress on I felt comfortable.  I knew I wanted lace from the start so it was an easy decision.  Although I knew something was missing, three weeks before I realised my dress needed a belt, luckily the staff at Bridal Path were happy to let me hire one.

My flowers were pastel coloured roses and gypsophilia. I wanted a vintage look to my bouquet which Carol from Acacia Flowers on Anglesey delivered.

Nina Wren did the hair and make up on the day and was fantastic.  She made all the ladies look amazing and was very professional.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (76)

Aeddan had a suit made from Moss Bros Bespoke, he tried on many suits but was never happy with the fit, so we decided to have one made for him.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (77)

Our bridesmaid wore a 1950s style dress from Vivien of Holloway and the bridesmen wore navy blue suits hired from Slaters.

The groomsmen also had suits hired from Slaters but these were in grey to match the groom.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (89)

Our photographer was Nicola from Daffodil Waves who exceeded our expectations.  I would wholeheartedly recommend her.  On the lead up to the day she was professional and her level of communication was amazing.  I honestly felt like her only bride.  On the day she was wonderful, it felt like having a friend there not a photographer.  As for the photographs, we were blown away by how amazing she made everything look.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (93)

The centre pieces for the reception were provided by Acacia Flowers and matched my bouquet, we then stacked the centrepieces on piles off vintage books.  We did much of the decoration ourselves including over 100 metres of bunting that we made. We really wanted to capture our personalities in the decoration which included a vintage ladder that Aeddan painted, a homemade scrabble board table plan and place names made from scrabble pieces.  There was also some Welsh décor.

Our chairs were hired from Chair Covers of Anglesey who went above and beyond by decorating the chapel for us on the morning of the wedding.

We gave out various favours including: CDs with music on from the day (for the men), Penguin book themed thank you notebooks (for the women), a personalised penguin book postcard for each guest and activity packs and games for the children.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (3)

We had a four tier cake from Benjamin Lee on Anglesey which included chocolate and baileys, chocolate and vanilla and strawberry.

We also had a sweet table, gave female guests flip flops in the evening and had garden games for the children.  We had two guest books, a vintage typewriter to fit in with our theme and giant colouring in where guests could colour a character and leave us their advice for a happy marriage, this now has pride of place in our hallway.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (5)

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (1)

We had a harpist in the ceremony who was a family friend who also played at Aeddan’s parents’ wedding.

In the evening we had a soul band called The Soul Boys, Aeddan was adamant he wanted a live band from the start and the Soul Boys kept our guests dancing all night.  The band were followed by a DJ who was under strict instructions not to play any cheesy music, we even had an hour of indie music.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (10)

I would recommend the venue without hesitation, it is absolutely unique.  To have everything on one sight and views out to sea over the Llyn Peninsula was amazing.  The service both in the lead up and on the day was professional and attentive.  Nothing was too much trouble.  Being able to book the venue for the weekend was an added bonus.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (11)

Our favourite part of the day was the ceremony.  We had a Catholic ceremony which was conducted by a friend the family.  He tailored the ceremony to suit our different beliefs and backgrounds.  We were able to design a bilingual ceremony that all our guests loved.  A particular highlight was our readings an Apache blessing translated in Welsh and A Lovely Love Story by Edward Monkton.

The bilingual elements of our day made it very special and personal to us, I even learnt some Welsh to surprise Aeddan with in my speech.

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (7)

Our honeymoon was spent in The Maldives where we enjoyed ten days relaxing on the Island of Kuramathi, Aeddan did manage to fit in some diving however!

a literary wedding in North Wales (c) Daffodil Waves Photography (15)

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be that all those details are worth it and your guests will notice all your hard work.  We had a vision and a spreadsheet and never compromised on it.

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real wedding recap winter 2014. glorious. a cool and colourful wedding in lancaster – stephanie & mark

December 24th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Merry Christmas! Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a break for the festive season, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely.

Usual service will recommence on Monday 5th January 2015 (with some big news!) but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far this year.  Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your Real Wedding was one of our top picks for 2014.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (34)

I’m all about the flowers in today’s stunning real wedding, sent to me by Brides Up North Sponsor James Jebson Photography and newlyweds Mark and Stephanie.

On the menu at this colourful wedding: all things bright and beautiful, a very beautiful bride, a dapper groom, some super cool styling and an abundance of pretty blooms.

Be inspired… and it’s over to the groom to talk you through it!

With images by James Jebson Photography.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (10)

mark says: We were married in Lancaster on 24th August 2014.

We chose our venues because we felt they complimented each other in their own special way and we are both fond of old grand buildings. We loved the grandeur of The Ashton Memorial overlooking The Lake District with its striking appearance. The boldness of the dome on the horizon for us sold it as it would be something we will always see and think about.

Thurnham Hall was picked as the reception because of its history and the intimate feel it had, alongside this was the huge fact that it looked like a castle and so went well with The Ashton Memorial.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (8)

Our theme was based around a show/play where each part of the day on the program was put together like a set of acts with a synopsis for each part. The programs were designed like you would receive at a show on arrival. The tables were set with each one being a scene from a London market and using the guests on the table we wrote a funny introduction to each scene including them in it. Our invites were designed and printed like an invite to a play based around the old Empire posters where it was heavily typographic with an old ‘admit one’ ticket in each tube for the guests.

The colours were a mixed bunch taking the lead from the bridesmaids dresses and ties and pocket squares to pick out the flower colours. There were bright pastel colours used in the flowers and more subtle tones used in the bridal party’s outfits.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (7)

Stephanie’s dress was a princess style dress from Enchanted Brides, Lostock Hall. The gown had a pale pink lace bodice and ivory at the bottom with a band around the waist.

My outfit was bought from Ben Sherman and it was a pale blue suit with a white shirt. The vintage waistcoat and brown braces with it were bought from a vintage fashion shop on Brick Lane.

The bridesmaids wore dresses from two places; the younger three dresses came from an online retailer called Vertbaudet, the older two bridesmaids wore dresses from Dorothy Perkins. The groomsmen got suits from Slaters in Preston and the ties came from Ben Sherman for each groomsman. The pocket squares were handmade from fabric bought from Abakhan.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (17)

Stephanie carried a bouquet with various vibrant flowers in it from Flower Design St Annes. There were blooms of different shades with a full poppy head.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (19)

I had a wooden bowtie and two ceramic scrabble pieces on each side of the cuff link with L(left) and R(right). Each groomsman had a personalised scrabble piece for their first initial inside the button holes.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (20)

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (23)

Our photographer was James Jebson Photography.

James understands creativity and understands people. Even on the first meeting with James I instantly felt comfortable with him. He has a great personality and he makes you feel in control throughout the day but adds his creative direction to it. He is such a lovely bloke too and has great banter which makes it even nicer. I would actually say he is someone we would like to see more often as I think we formed a bond with him on the day.

When we first saw our images we were absolutely stunned, they were amazing. They brought tears to my eyes when I saw them for the first time.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (27)

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (31)

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (38)

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (39)

Our stationery was by Ditto Press, Dalston.

All table furnishings and props were sourced by us from vintage tins to old books as you will see in the photographs. We had a sack for all the wedding notes, the wedding notes were hand letterpressed postcards that people could write on.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (43)

We chose to use cupcakes from Yummy Cupcakes in Lancaster. 7 tiers were used, the top cake was a fruitcake and the other 6 tiers were various assorted cakes with different flavours.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (41)

We had a pianist to play throughout the evening reception for the guests and a DJ afterwards.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (46)

We went to Windermere for a minimoon. We stayed at a place called The Rum Doodle, a boutique hotel. Our main honeymoon is in New Zealand next year.

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (49)

Designing the theme or idea is the trickiest part, so my top tip for Brides Up North would be have a really rough concept from the start, brainstorm ideas together and build a really rough storyboard of what you want in moodboards, Pinterest or drawings, whatever you can. What you will find is that when you start building up the people you are using you will gather ideas and create more ideas with them when meeting them. Its not a bad thing that you have a rough guide. We started the ball rolling with our invitations and this gave us a great design base/concept with look and feel, typography, colours and that reflected in the flowers we wanted and how they were created by our florist.

And drink lots after the wedding watershed.  The wedding watershed is around 9:30pm!

a fresh & colourful wedding at Thornham Hall (c) James Jebson Photography (55)

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