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school of love. catherine deane for a sophisticated wedding in st andrews – laura & tom

November 5th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth

A Sophisticated Wedding in St Andrews (c) Anna Joy Photography (37)

Renowned as the UK’s top matchmaking university – St Andrews more than lives up to this accolade on the blog today, with bride and groom, Laura and Tom so taken by this special location – the place where they first met – that they chose tie the knot here in July.

Opting for a natural, simple look for their big day, the Laxey Manx tartan – a nod to Laura’s heritage – was a prominent feature in their décor and styling, featuring on everything from their wedding favours and bunting to the centrepieces and the groomsmen’s attire.

Of course, no Scottish wedding would be complete without a ceilidh – and the couple squeezed in a few nostalgic throwbacks too, sourcing their wedding cake from their favourite bakery as well as ice cream from a local parlour. Other special touches that break with convention, which we just have to mention, include bubbles for confetti and the bride saying a few words alongside her new hubby. Read on for all the wonderful details!

With images by Anna Joy Photography.

A Sophisticated Wedding in St Andrews (c) Anna Joy Photography (31)

laura says: We got engaged on Saturday 15th October 2016, in the Lake District. It was our seven-year anniversary and Tom had treated us to a stay in a country house hotel with beautiful views of Lake Windermere. After a rainy day spent exploring and finishing up with a local brewery tour, we got back to the hotel to relax before dinner, which is when Tom popped the question!

A Sophisticated Wedding in St Andrews (c) Anna Joy Photography (16)

We got married on Saturday 28th July 2018. We didn’t want to rush into wedding planning, so it was nice to give ourselves plenty of time after the engagement and preferred the idea of a summer wedding.

We got married in St Andrews, the town where we met whilst studying at the University of St Andrews. Our ceremony was in the beautiful St Salvator’s Chapel and the reception was held in the University’s Lower and Upper College Hall across from the chapel. St Andrews is a special place for both of us, so it was the obvious choice, despite requiring some travel – we live in London, I’m from the Isle of Man and Tom is from Manchester!

A Sophisticated Wedding in St Andrews (c) Anna Joy Photography (32)

Our wedding had a simple and natural style, staying true to ourselves – we wanted to avoid anything too over the top! We used local suppliers and used ours and our families’ skills to make things ourselves wherever possible!

We didn’t have a specific theme, however we featured the Laxey Manx tartan throughout the wedding to reflect my Isle of Man heritage. We used tartan ribbon on our save the dates and wedding invitations, the men had tartan ties, the reception tables had tartan centre pieces (made by Tom’s mum) and we had tartan bunting decorating the reception venue (made by my mum).

The Manx tartan colours are light blue for the sea, green for the hills and valleys, purple for the heather, gold for the gorse, and white for the cottages, so we used these to guide our colour scheme. We picked out the blue, white and green for the flowers and chose green for the bridesmaid dresses and the men’s pocket squares.

A Sophisticated Wedding in St Andrews (c) Anna Joy Photography (42)

I chose a simple wedding dress with a sweetheart neckline and a flowing skirt with layers of tulle as the base but added a crocheted style lace top for the day with three quarter length sleeves, finished with a simple tulle cathedral length veil. For the evening I removed my veil and changed into a jewelled top to add some sparkle! The full outfit was by Catherine Deane, which I purchased from the London boutique in Wapping Wharf. My mum spotted a Catherine Deane dress in a wedding magazine which we both liked so that was how I first came across her collection. Sandra at the boutique was wonderful and helped me choose from their beautiful range. I liked dresses at several other places in London that were a very different style, but I felt most comfortable and true to myself in Catherine Deane.

To accessorise, I wore simple silver sling-back flat shoes from Jones the Bootmaker – I very rarely wear heels and didn’t think our wedding day was the time to start!

My something old (and blue) was a garter made from a scrap of blue material that was left over from the dresses my mum made for her bridesmaids when she got married, my something new was my outfit, and my something borrowed was the pearl drop earrings I borrowed from mum.

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sophisticated sparkle: morilee for an intimate wedding at styal lodge – rachel & paul

July 25th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson

A Sophisticated Wedding at Styal Lodge (c) Lee Brown Photography (61)

The bride and groom of today’s real wedding chose a ‘classy not trashy’ theme for their big day and we’re sure you’ll agree they surpassed their goal, with an elegant colour scheme of pink, grey and silver, and just the right amount of sparkle.

Their chosen Cheshire venue is dressed to the nines – the swags draped from the ceiling complete with fairy lights all pulled together by a disco-ball chandelier looks very effective in the cosy lodge setting, especially by nightfall. We also love Rachel’s choice of centrepieces, not only because the martini glasses overflowing with gypsophila and lush blooms look super pretty, but because the beauty of tall centrepieces is they give great impact when guests enter a room, but when they come to sit at the table the display is above their eye line, and so they can easily chat to everyone across the table without obstruction.

And bride Rachel has lots more fabulous tips too; from choosing edible wedding favours and arranging joint planning meetings with your florist and stylist, to attending open days at your chosen venue and booking your desired suppliers ASAP – ladies, you may well want to take note!

With images by Brides Up North Sponsor Lee Brown Photography.

A Sophisticated Wedding at Styal Lodge (c) Lee Brown Photography (71)

rachel says: We got engaged at home. I got back from the gym and Paul said he wanted to go out for something to eat that evening. As we are both rubbish at making simple decisions, he said he wanted me to come up with three choices of where we could go whilst I was in the shower so, when I got out of the shower (with a towel wrapped around my hair and my pink dressing gown on), Paul was shouting my name from downstairs. As I hadn’t thought of three choices, I cheekily just ignored him and pretended I couldn’t hear him but, by the third shout, I thought I had better answer him so when I did, he shouted “Come down here, our song is on!” I thought that was quite sweet, so I went downstairs in my towel and dressing gown and, when I walked into the room, our song was playing, the room was full of candles and Paul was down on one knee. When he asked me, I was speechless (that doesn’t happen a lot). Then I asked if he was joking and then I finally said yes!

A Sophisticated Wedding at Styal Lodge (c) Lee Brown Photography (49)

We got married on Friday 4th May 2018 at Styal Lodge, Cheshire. There wasn’t really a particular reason for the date, other than the weather is usually OK in May and it was the start of the bank holiday weekend.

We would definitely recommend Styal Lodge to other couples, especially those looking for small, exclusive venues. We wanted a small venue as we only had 75 day guests and we felt it was more personal to us. The gardens are lovely and, on the day during the drinks reception, the bride, groom, photographer and videographer get driven to a nearby lake in the grounds for photos. The venue is also easy to find and very accessible as it isn’t far from Manchester Airport, so there are good transport links. Another really nice touch is that each year they hold an event called Bridesmaids’ Brunch, where the bride can take up to three of her bridesmaids to the venue and they have suppliers there to chat to, live music and it is also dressed, which can be good for inspiration. Food and drink are provided and it’s just a really nice atmosphere, as it’s only available to brides who have booked their weddings. They usually have two or three open days each year too, which is helpful to go and see the venue dressed and speak to different suppliers.

Our theme was classy, not trashy and our colour scheme was light pink, grey, silver and a touch of sparkle!

A Sophisticated Wedding at Styal Lodge (c) Lee Brown Photography (58)

For my dress, I chose a princess gown with a love heart neckline. The designer is Morilee and I purchased it from Blush Boutique in Uppermill. I chose it as it was the kind of dress I thought I would want as long as the style suited me – and luckily it did. It also had the right amount of sparkle and I loved the tulle skirt. I had looked on the internet at different dresses I liked before going shopping and saved the designers and style names in my phone. When I went into the shop and picked dresses out to try on, I purposefully didn’t look at what the designers were or the price as I just wanted to try on a mixture. Then, when I tried my dress on for the first time and loved it, I looked at the list in my phone of dresses I had made a note of and this one was the first on the list!

A Sophisticated Wedding at Styal Lodge (c) Lee Brown Photography (8)

Paul wore a grey suit, with a silver waistcoat and a pink cravat, all from Moss Bros. The groomsmen all wore the same suit and waistcoat as Paul, but they had pink ties instead of a cravat.

The bridesmaid dresses were all from Dorothy Perkins and the flower girl dresses were from John Rocha at Debenhams. I also had a ‘bridesman’ who wore the same suit as Paul and the groomsmen but he had a dicky bow instead of a tie or cravat.

Lux did all of our hair and makeup and we were all so happy with it.

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pretty in pink: roses & gyp for a sophisticated wedding at sandburn hall – ell & richard

June 21st, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson

A Sophisticated Wedding at Sandburn Hall (c) Photography By Charli (31)

For our second dose of gorgeousness today is Ell and Richard’s visual feast of a wedding, centred around a romantic dusty pink colour palette. The couple carried the sophisticated scheme through the whole day; from the elegant strapless bridesmaid dresses to the translucent ribbon detail adorning the backs of the chairs.

As Ell and Richard exchanged their vows in front of the most beautiful countryside backdrop and underneath a blanket of fairy lights strung from the beams, a pair of blossom-style trees frame the scene perfectly and echo the rural vista beyond, mirroring a pair of majestic trees in the landscape. The indoor trees took on a whole new level of impact in the evening after the sun had set, as the hundreds of fairy lights sparkled romantically for the first dance.

There are some fun details too; from the cheese cake to celebrate their passion for fromage, to the jars of mini eggs that nod to the Easter weekend.

We also adore the subtle beading on Ell’s stunning gown, which we think complements the delicate feel of the entire day perfectly!

With images by Photography by Charli.

A Sophisticated Wedding at Sandburn Hall (c) Photography By Charli (33)

ell says: Richard proposed on the evening of my last day of work before Christmas 2016. He got down on one knee in front of the Christmas tree in our living room. My favourite time of year is Christmas and my favourite place to be is at home, in front of the fire with Richard and our black lab, Jet. So it was the perfect proposal!

A Sophisticated Wedding at Sandburn Hall (c) Photography By Charli (11)

We got married on 30th March 2018 (Good Friday). We got a great deal with the venue for a March wedding and so we decided to go for the latest date available. It helped that we went to view the venue on a miserable January day and still fell in love with it, so we knew no matter what the weather was like the venue was great!

We had both our ceremony and reception at Sandburn Hall in York. We loved the rustic beams and amazing views from the Grand Hall. We would 100% recommend the venue to other couples. Hayley, our wedding planner, was a superstar! She made us feel so relaxed on what I had thought would be a very stressful day.

A Sophisticated Wedding at Sandburn Hall (c) Photography By Charli (24)

Our colour scheme was dusty pink. I really loved the colour and didn’t want a scheme that made it too difficult to tie it in with the bridesmaids’ outfits and table centrepieces. We wanted our decor to be delicate and pretty.

A Sophisticated Wedding at Sandburn Hall (c) Photography By Charli (36)

For my dress, I went for an A-line design. I’m pretty tall and this was the most flattering shape/style.

I purchased the dress from Finery Bridal in Sherburn.

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Wednesday Wedding Inspiration – Spring Sophisticate

September 5th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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My apologies for the later than usual wedding blog instalment this evening (hey, look on the bright side, you got to admire those pink lace heels for a little longer, right?) but I’ve been swanning around the North West:  meeting with Mcr Fashion Week to discuss a very exciting project (news soon!), turning Yo Sushi into my office for the afternoon and trialling the bridal makeup experience with my friends at Clarins (more on this soon, but what a lovely afternoon I have had!).  The heavy M62 home time traffic means that the schedule has slipped ever so slightly, but boy I have a pretty one to make up for it (make up… geddit?!). 

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Yo Sushi

The Northern Revolution refuels at Yo Sushi!

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Meanwhile, reader Amelia writes:

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Hi Julia & Katy, I love the mood boards that you feature every Wednesday. I have one for you to have a go at. I am getting married next spring but I don’t want to go down the traditional ‘spring fresh’ wedding approach with lots of yellow and green. What colour combination would still be pretty for March without looking like the Easter bunny is about to make an appearance? I don’t mind a nod to the season but I’m not looking for an all out Easter parade? I hope that you can help, cheers, Amelia xxxx

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It’s over to the wonderful Katy from What Katy Did Next (our regular guest blogger and mood board maestro) to help out.  And there ain’t an Easter bunny in sight…

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Spring Wedding Inspiration

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1. Spring Bouquet 2. Claire Pettibone Gown 3. Pastel Mix Bridesmaids 4. Messy Up Do 5. Watercolour Wedding Invitations 6. Sakura Peep Toe Heels 7. Belted Chiffon Dress 8. Pastel Centrepiece 9. Wedding Cake 10. Opalite Cherry Blossom Earrings

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Katy says: This week’s board is for the lovely Amelia who requested colour inspiration for her March Wedding. Amelia wanted to avoid the usual ‘Spring Fresh’ yellow and greens theme so I opted for a palette that varies from very soft pink and nudes to dried lavender and grey hues with deep flashes of peachy coral to modernise the board. Its becoming incredibly popular to have your bridesmaids in a variety of shades: if you are having a mix of colours in your bouquet why not reflect this in the bridesmaids attire? The gowns in the top right image blend so beautifully and the Donna Morgan belted chiffon dress is available in some gorgeous tones.

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I decided to give the board a ‘nod to the season’ with touches of blossom. The blossom should be just starting to appear in March and it is so beautiful! If your venue has them, blossom trees make great backdrops in wedding photographs. You could include blossom in your centrepieces – a vase full of branches, floating bowls of blossom heads, or simply include them amongst other floral arrangements with similar soft tissue-like flowers such as peonies or David Austin Roses. The blossom theme is also carried onto the fabulous Harriet Wilde heels, pretty detailed earrings and the beautiful Claire Pettibone bolero.

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If pink isn’t your thing, sway towards the greying purple shades and turn the pinkier shades on the board to white/ivory/cream. If bolder colours are your cup of tea use flashes of red instead of greys. I’m in love with the very fresh duck egg blue and sea mist at the moment, see my Simple Sea Mist board from last month. You could add it to this board in place of the nude shades, it will still work well with pale blossom. With the risk of adding too much Easter to the wedding – Cadbury’s Purple is becoming very popular with brides at the moment – just steer clear of teaming it with brown and you will avoid Easter egg comparisons!

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Remember: the plan is to share a new inspiration board in this time slot every other week, either compiled by myself, regular guest blogger Katy or YOU: get in touch with your own ideas and inspiration boards! We’ll be discussing our inspirations behind the images too so it’s simply going to be a whole load of lovely.

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If you are a little less arty but in need of inspiration and still want to play along, we will also be taking requests for colour schemes and themes and making bespoke boards for my readers. Please contact me to suggest a theme or colour scheme.

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Click here to see previous Wednesday Wedding Inspiration Mood Boards

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog Images © 2012 as credited, supplied by What Katy Did Next

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