July 26th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
The wonderful Alnwick Garden in Northumberland provides the stunning, contemporary backdrop to today’s nuptials between Jade and James, who tied the knot in May of this year. Describing their venue as both impressive and beautiful – we think you’ll agree when you see the fabulous photos from their big day!
Going for a rustic and natural theme to tie in with this exquisite setting, the couple chose a dreamy pink, cream and white colour scheme, which complemented the surroundings beautifully. Throw in a dash of sunshine and you’ve got the perfect mix for those natural, outdoorsy feels. There are plenty of other Insta-worthy touches to look out for throughout the day too; from the candy floss stand and handmade table decorations, to the three-tier semi-naked wedding cake, which looks simply divine.
This is something of a blueprint for a wedding that’s a little bit different to your traditional barns and castles and we think you’re going to love the result! So, let’s pass the blog onto Jade to talk us through the finer details.
jade says: We got engaged on 27th November 2016. James is quite into his photography and had told me he had arranged access to the roof terrace of The Vermont Hotel to take photos of Newcastle. We turned up at The Vermont and were taken upstairs and left on the terrace alone. I noticed music was playing in the background but didn’t take any notice as James was taking photos, our song came on (Ed Sheeran’s Thinking Out Loud) which I thought was a bit strange. James then asked me to look at the Tyne Bridge; his family were holding a banner over the bridge asking me to marry him! He got down on one knee and popped the question, to which I said yes of course! Afterwards we had some champagne and pictures taken. When we went downstairs and into the lounge, I was then surprised by my parents, who had travelled up from Sheffield without me knowing! We all went for lunch together and had some celebratory drinks!
We tied the knot on 27th May 2018. We chose that date as it is close to the start of summer and has a good chance of being good weather but not too hot. It was also a bank holiday the day after, so it made it easier for people travelling a long way.
We had the ceremony and reception at The Alnwick Garden. We had looked at a few different venues which we liked but when we saw the gardens we fell in love with how beautiful it was. On a sunny day, which we fortunately had for our wedding, I think you would struggle to find a more impressive and beautiful venue!
We had a fairly rustic and natural theme for our wedding. We thought this suited the venue and tied in with the natural elements of the garden.
The colour scheme was light pinks, cream and white which suited the natural and rustic style we had chosen. It also suited the bridesmaids’ dresses.
My dress was Martina Liana, design 744 – an embroidered lace gown embellished with diamonds and pearls, a backless mermaid style with a long train. The dress was from Mia Sposa, who made my experience very special and Joy was amazing in helping me find the dress. As a special touch to my attire, James surprised me on the morning of the wedding with earrings made out of diamonds from his mother’s original engagement ring, which was very thoughtful.
January 14th, 2016 | Julia Braime
We shared Amanei and Erik’s love story on the blog last summer, and we are thrilled that they have chosen to return to our pages to show off their stunning autumnal wedding at one of our very favourite North East Wedding venues, The Alnwick Garden.
The couple’s dutch inspired Delft blue colour scheme is striking and beautiful in the golden setting of the gorgeous winter gardens.
Images by Julie Barron Photography.
amanei says: Erik proposed just before midnight on October 25th 2014, at Oblix Restaurant at the Shard, during an amazing weekend away in London. As a surprise he’d also arranged for some of my family to be there the following day for a meal together to celebrate before travelling home. It was a surprise, however as he’d had the ring since August, I knew it was on the cards!
We chose 22nd November 2015 for our wedding date as we really wanted a winter wedding, but didn’t want it to be too close to Christmas (no Santa at our reception please!).
Our ceremony was held at our local and gorgeous parish Church in Gosforth, The Sacred Heart, and after a lot of searching we found the perfect winter reception venue, The Alnwick Garden. The outside festive garden lighting and the magical treehouse were exactly what we were looking for, and more.
The theme was Winter Woodland simply due to the time of the year and as it matched the venue so well. The colour scheme we chose was Delft, as my husband is Dutch we thought it was a lovely touch to have this as our colour scheme.
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November 12th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
This morning’s real wedding couple decided to make to plan a wedding that was pretty and personal rather than shaping it around one set theme.
The result is a very natural and romantic big day that’s brimming with beautiful elements; from the fairy tale style venue to the gorgeous blooms and delicate decor, this one has it all!
With images by Brides Up North favourite, Paul Liddement Wedding Stories.
wendy says: We got engaged on the banks of Loch Lomond in February 2013. I’m from Helensburgh, near Loch Lomond and I love boats so Dave arranged for us to go on a boat tour for my birthday. After a beautiful, if slightly chilly, trip around the loch and a whisky to calm the nerves, Dave got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
Our wedding date was Saturday 6th June 2015. As we were getting married outside we wanted to choose date where we might have slightly less chance of getting rain.
We got married and had our reception at The Treehouse in Alnwick Gardens. We looked at a number of venues in and around my hometown and felt they were far too formal. I then started looking online for unusual wedding venues and came across the Treehouse. As soon as we walked up its walkway we knew we had found the right place; it’s so naturally beautiful, the perfect size and adorned with fairy lights!
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October 5th, 2015 | Rachel Parry
It might be Monday morning but we’ve got a gorgeous real wedding that will provide a little escapism from your 9 ‘till 5!
Danielle and Christopher’s picture perfect woodland wedding took place at the stunning tree house within Alnwick Gardens in Northumberland. Embracing the rustic setting the couple settled on a natural theme adding complementary touches in their cake and décor choices.
This pair are certainly up there with the most stylish brides and grooms we’ve seen grace our pages, with Christopher opting for a blue tweed suit and Danielle picking a stunning Mori Lee fishtail gown – definite dress crush!
With images by Sarah Thew Photography.
danielle says: We got engaged on holiday, it was in Murcia. We hired a car and decided to visit the town Cartagena, it was mid-July so a scorching hot day. We arrived and walked around the town, making our way towards the port. Christopher insisted we walked all the way to the end of the pier; I wasn’t so pleased about this in the baking heat! However we did, as we got to the end of the pier, it was beautiful. Out of nowhere he pulled a box out from his shorts and got down on one knee (for a split second, may I add). I was so shocked and over-whelmed. It was the best day!
Our wedding date was 1st August 2015. Christopher proposed to me on the same day in 2013. So we thought this would be memorable – and he would never forget our anniversary!
We got married at the beautiful tree house in Alnwick Gardens. I originally discovered this watching Don’t Tell The Bride and loved it. We did visit a few other venues closer to home but decided to put this one off no longer. As soon as we arrived that was it for us both, the tree house itself, its grounds and inside was just magical. We both knew it was the right place for us.
We kind of decided to go with the woodland theme taken from the venue itself, with a slightly relaxed feel too. Because the venue is so beautiful it didn’t need much else added to it. It speaks for itself really.
Our colour scheme was a very relaxed pastel shade. The bridesmaid dress was a mocha colour and my flowers were cream roses with sweet peas. I wanted to keep it simple and not too formal really.
My dress was a fishtail style, it was Mori Lee from the bridal boutique Y.A.P in the heart of Newcastle. I had always wanted this style of wedding gown and soon as I tried it on for the first time it was the one. Because the dress itself was very ‘statement’ I felt I didn’t need much else, deciding on not to wear a veil meant it wasn’t too over-powering.
Both and his groomsmen’s’ outfits were from a suit hire venue called Most Suitable in Newcastle. The groomsmen wore green tweed with mocha pocket square which linked in well with the colour of the bridesmaid dress.
My bridesmaid had her dress made for her. It was from a bridal boutique in Newcastle called Laura Lea Boutique.
I arrived at the wedding venue in a vintage Rolls Royce. The company which provided this service was called Alnwick Wedding Cars. They did an amazing job; they also took Christopher and his best man before me.
Sarah Thew was our photographer and I must say she was absolutely fantastic. I couldn’t have asked for a better photographer being part of our big day. She made us both feeling at ease and relaxed from start to end. She also went away while we had our wedding breakfast and later returned to take images of the night time, which I was so grateful for. We got some fabulous shots.
My wedding flowers consisted of cream roses, spray roses, double lisianthus, gyp, sweet peas, and foliage in a hand held posy. The button holes and corsages were a cream rose and greenery. To decorate the ten tables at the reception we had milk bottles with gyp and spray roses. For the aisle we used jam jars and milk bottles with a mixture of gyp and spray roses in with some greenery. I also used a plain white bunting for around the turret which was an area before we arrived up to the treehouse. All the flowers were provided by Simply Flowers in Alnwick.
Our favours for the ladies were a brown hessian bag with a printed heart on the front. Inside there was a small wooden engraved hearts saying ‘Mr & Mrs Burke’ and the date of our wedding. A small pack of love hearts and bubbles. The men had a small green shot glass and poem attached on a vintage post tag.
The wedding cake was a vanilla sponge made by Baked With Love By Laura. I had discovered a dew design I liked and asked Laura to come up with something similar, it was perfect. I purchased the cake toppers from Not On The High Street and used a slice of tree trunk for the base of the cake – this finished it off perfectly
We decided on the Aaron Bayley Band for our night time entertainment. They were a five piece band and played live music for all genres, which meant all guests could really enjoy it. They played right through until mid-night, which was a bonus! Lucy Bewley was my pianist who played me up the aisle during the ceremony. The song she played was Kissing You by Des’ree. It was beautiful.
As a special touch we provided guests with a guest book and ‘signature tree’ – they printed their thumb print onto the tree and signed next to it. This worked perfectly for the tree house setting and was a great piece to frame and keep.
We also hired some love letters from New Image Signs, which were placed just outside the venue. These worked great when it began to get dark. New Image Signs did an amazing job and the service was outstanding! The love letters really made the whole venue light up and we managed to get some shots sitting inside the letters which was amazing! Would fully recommend this company for any special occasion.
I’d also highly recommend Alnwick Gardens. The venue is so special and the staff are brilliant, especially the wedding planner Wendy who helped me plan and make my ideas become real! She was amazing leading up to the day but also on the day itself! I couldn’t have asked for a better venue, it was perfect in every way; both the food and drinks were fabulous too!
My favourite part of the wedding had to be walking up the aisle – it was beautiful, and seeing Christopher and all my family and friends made it so special. Saying our vows was slightly nerve-racking however we were just us and laughed our way through it!
We delayed our honeymoon until later in the year. We will be jetting off to Dubai on Boxing Day! We wanted to drag our celebration out even longer and have something special to look forward to at the end of our best year!
My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to enjoy every second! It really does fly by, even though everyone says it! End the night on the dance floor with your new husband and best friends! That’s what made it special for me.
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August 18th, 2015 | Julia Braime
This afternoon we meet husband and wife-to-be Amanei and Erik, as they share with us their love story and the results of their stunning engagement shoot. The Alnwick Garden provides a beautiful backdrop for the shoot and will also be the setting for Amanei and Erik’s impending big day.
So let’s join them on a stroll around the grounds as we find out the all-important how, when and where’s.
With images by Julie Barron Photography.
amanei says: Erik proposed just before midnight on 25th October 2014. We were at the Oblix Restaurant at The Shard, during an amazing weekend away in London. As a surprise he’d also arranged for some of my family to be there the following day for a meal together to celebrate before travelling home. It was all a surprise, however as he’d had the ring since August, I knew it was on the cards!
We chose to set the date for 22nd November 2015 as we really wanted a winter wedding, but didn’t want it to be too close to Christmas (no Santa at our reception please).
Our ceremony is to be held at our local and gorgeous parish church and after a lot of searching we found the perfect winter reception venue, The Alnwick Garden.
We first met in the office at work. Erik was my (not so secret) Santa shortly after he moved to the same department I was working in (he bought me knitted slipper socks that were three sizes too big!) He is insistent however that for the first months after meeting him, I completely ignored him! After a number of ‘espresso coffee’ dates at work, our first official date was at the intimate Dacantus restaurant in Newcastle in spring last year. We still sometimes go in for a sneaky glass of wine when we’re passing Grey Street and reminisce about how perfect it was!
I suppose it’s true what they say, that when you meet ‘the one’ you know instantly, because that’s definitely what happened in our case – the choice is I suppose, made for you! Erik is my absolute rock and that’s why I love him so much. I know that he will support me, and our relationship, through thick and thin and whatever married life may throw at us. He’ll be an amazing husband.
Erik says that he knew from the beginning, when we first used to go for coffee together that I was that ‘one’ special person. He proposed very quickly but says that’s because he doesn’t have any doubts about us.
We both have our little downfalls though. No matter how often I tell Erik not to, he always feeds our Chihuahua Miles, some of his dinner, and Erik says I can be a bit of a control freak – he wishes I would just relax a little bit more.
Our biggest wish for married life is to have a solid, stable, supportive home and to make each other happy, that’s all we can ever wish for – anything else is a bonus!
Our wedding photographer Julie was recommended to us by a friend and as we had never worked with her before we took her up on the offer of an engagement shoot. We want very natural, unobtrusive and relaxed photography to capture our day and were confident that Julie was the right choice, but the engagement shoot concreted that for us. Phew!
We were definitely nervous beforehand, however Julie really put us at ease and we really enjoyed the session, but most importantly we now know that on the day we’ll feel comfortable while Julie is photographing us – which is so important.
The timing of the engagement shoot was also perfect as we’ve just moved into our beautiful new house, so we’re planning on framing some of the stunning pictures to make it feel like more of a home – it’s just a little difficult to decide on those select few, as we love so many!
I love Brides Up North because I find the amount of local contacts, suppliers and events featured are really useful in preparing all of those little details for the day! For us being able to contact suppliers who are local enough to meet up with and discuss ideas face to face is really important. We hope to return to share our big day on the blog.
January 21st, 2015 | Julia Braime
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.
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!”
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.
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.
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!
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.
My bridesmaids wore a long, strapless green chiffon dress which was bought over the internet from a specialist bridesmaid dress designer.
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!
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!
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!
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.
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.
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.
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!
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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