Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

january sunshine. ronald joyce for a winter wedding at mitton hall – carly & phil

March 20th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh

Mitton Hall Wedding Photography Lancashire

Today’s couple had a January wedding, although you wouldn’t guess it from the pictures. These photos positively glow with sepia-toned sunlight, and the navy, peach and dusky purple of the colour scheme as well as the champagne tones of Carly’s dress create even more warmth.

Add some woodland details in the decor, roaring open fires and a magical Nordic honeymoon and you’ve got the perfect recipe to beat the winter blues.

With photography by Charlotte Boothman of Lottie Designs.

Mitton Hall Wedding Photography Lancashire

carly says: We got engaged on the 23rd April, 2016. Phil had booked us a night away in Wales, near Lake Vyrnwy. We went for a walk in the hills above the lake just before lunchtime and sat down at a gorgeous spot where the trees open up and you can see all of the lake. Not knowing that Phil was getting ready to propose (and feeling rather nervous), I decided that this was a good time for lunch, so he had to wait for me to finish a sandwich and a grab bag of crisps before he could ask me to marry him!

Mitton Hall Wedding Photography Lancashire

We got married on Friday 20th January 2017. Neither of us were really bothered about a spring or summer wedding, and we knew that you can never really guarantee the weather at any time of the year. So when we decided that we wanted to get married at Mitton Hall, we took the first date that they offered us! The gamble paid off, as the weather was amazing.

We got married at Mitton Hall in the Ribble Valley. We both love the Ribble Valley, so it was the first place that we wanted to look for a wedding venue. We’d only heard amazing things about Mitton Hall, and as soon as we walked in we knew it was perfect for us. We loved how each room was different. The main room was very open and light, which we knew we’d need with it being winter. However, the bar areas were really cosy with big fires.

Mitton Hall Wedding Photography Lancashire

We didn’t really have a theme for the wedding to begin with, but with it being a winter wedding I wanted to try to mix some rustic, woodland type décor with some gold/champagne pieces to add a touch of glamour and warmth. Everything else just fell into place from there.

Colour-wise, we wanted something quite subtle and laid back. We mixed dusky purples, ivory, dove grey and champagne tones, with navy and the odd bit of peach here and there.

Mitton Hall Wedding Photography Lancashire

My dress was called Erin by Ronald Joyce and I bought it from Bridalwear by Emma Louise in Bolton. I had tried on quite a few dresses before going to Emma Louise, but none of them felt 100% right. I’d always thought that I would have chosen a relaxed, bohemian style dress, but when I saw ‘the one’ I just loved all of the lace detail and the embellishment. It was also the first champagne coloured dress that I’d tried on and I loved it! It warmed my skin up the minute that I put it on.

I also wore earrings from Liberty in Love, which Phil bought for me as a wedding gift. He knew that I wanted to wear pearl earrings on the day, and he was so lucky with the pair that he picked because they went with my dress perfectly.

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charming cherry blossom. charlotte balbier for a summer wedding at hurlston hall – jennifer & adam

September 5th, 2016 | Julia Braime

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (39)

Today we’re packing in an extra punch of pretty with a second real wedding for to feast your eyes on.

For anyone planning a classic wedding that will truly stand the test of time, Jennifer and Adam’s big day is a perfect example of how it’s done; starting with a traditional church ceremony and ending with a lively reception at an elegant venue.

The dusky pink colour scheme works perfectly for the time of year and we just love the delicate touches of cherry blossom dotted throughout.

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (52)

jennifer says: We got engaged in September 2014, while we were away on holiday in Antalya, Turkey. The hotel was amazing and there was a gorgeous private beach. We went for a stroll on the second night and Adam brought his camera. He wanted to get a picture of the both of us so I sat in one of the sun huts. He set the camera up on a timer and once ready he ran over and got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife – just in time for the camera to capture the moment! I loved that he didn’t just ask me to marry him – he specifically asked me to become his wife, which was really special to me.

We picked 28th May 2016, as the date for the wedding. It was a bank holiday weekend and we wanted to give everyone an extra day to recover – we are party animals after all!

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (79)

We got married at the lovely St Michael’s Church in Aughton. If you went there yourself, you’d know why. The people there are amazing too. Our reception was at Hurlston Hall, in Ormskirk. We were over the moon with the venue. The views from the function room are breath-taking as it overlooks the golf course, plus it has an outside balcony so everyone could be in the sun.

We didn’t intend on having a theme but it kind of brought itself together – pink cherry blossom ran through pretty much everything, giving the wedding a slight oriental vibe. As such the colour scheme was of course, pink!

An Elegant Wedding at Hurlston Hall (c) Jonny Draper (25)

My dress was a Charlotte Balbier design – Iscoyd Park – the one that Charlotte herself chose to get married in! Although I did get it made an extra metre longer as I wanted a huge train. It wasn’t what I thought I’d go for at all. When I tried it on it was like Cinderella finding that shoe; it is a truly beautiful dress and Charlotte is an amazing designer. I got the veil to match too, which was a last minute decision! I’m so glad I did though. I got my outfit from Belle’s Bridal Boutique in Liverpool, a really cute bridal shop and the girls there are lovely.

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vintage vision. augusta jones for a sweet village hall wedding in the north west – claire & matt

August 17th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (23)

Wow, where to start with today’s village hall wedding? It’s absolutely gorgeous, from the bride’s bargain wedding dress to the pretty afternoon tea reception, and all that’s in-between!

As they were footing the bill for the wedding themselves, Claire and Matt where careful to stick to their budget, looking for areas in which they could make savings but without cutting corners, whilst also calling in favours from family and friends along the way.

Their vintage vision came together perfectly and provides so much inspiration for couples wanting to follow in similar themed footsteps. So let’s take a closer look at the pretty…

With images by Andrew Keher Photography.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (7)

claire says: We got engaged on my 30th birthday in November 2013 while in Belfast. I was born in Northern Ireland and my family still live there so Matt wanted to take me home to get engaged. Matt managed to plan the whole thing and keep it a secret – I had no idea! Throughout the day we arrived Matt was secretly recording little videos and pictures and sent them to an email account he set up for me. He later told me he had the ring with him all day but couldn’t find the right moment to ask the big question. He decided to ask me on my birthday so when I woke up he showed me the email account and got me to read all the messages he’d sent through. When I got to the final one he was down on one knee and before I knew it had asked me to marry him. We were both in tears at this point – it was perfect! Plus he chose ‘the ring’ I’d seen – a vintage 1920s engagement ring that was in a local jewellers, Mr Allan’s. Every time we went past we would look at it but then one day I noticed it had been sold – I was sad until I realised he’d saved up and bought it for me!

We set the date for 6th June 2015. We’d been together for nine years on the 4th June 2015 so this was the closest date we could get to that.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (1)

We got married at our church, St Oswald and St Edmund Arrowsmith Catholic Church in Ashton-in-Makerfield. We both went to the high school there and some of Matt’s relatives are buried in the church grounds so it has a special connection for us. It’s a beautiful church – the photos from Andy really show off the church at its best. We chose Dunham Massey Village Hall for our reception as we love the area and the nearby National Trust Park. We also loved that it gave us the freedom to do what we wanted with the space. The price was so reasonable it was perfect for us as we were paying for the whole wedding ourselves.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (5)

We went with a vintage theme but it wasn’t really a conscious thing – we just love everything vintage! We were really keen on having afternoon tea which lends itself to the vintage theme really well.

We didn’t really have a set colour scheme. The colour came from the flowers – when we met Clare from The Flower Farm we decided on seasonal flowers with pinks, purples and blues to add some colour to the venue.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (11)

I was set on a dress in a vintage style. I knew I wanted lace and tried on a few styles before I found ‘the one’! I tried Ali by Augusta Jones in a local bridal shop and knew instantly it was the one but it was way out of my budget – £2,000! I tried to find something similar on the high street but couldn’t get this dress out of my mind. In the end I found it for sale for £600 on eBay and arranged with the seller to go and try it on. I would recommend that anyone buying second hand does the same and be 100% sure you’re happy with it before you hand over any money.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (16)

To go with the dress, I wanted some shoes that were special so I knew I’d find something from Rachel Simpson. The Gardenia style in powder blue were just what I wanted and were so comfortable to wear – I kept them on all day. I kept my accessories really simple with a pair of drop pearl earrings from Marks & Spencer and my engagement ring.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (18)

Matt was keen to wear something a little different and special for the big day. After a ‘few’ shopping trips he eventually found his suit in Reiss – the Claymore. After that nothing compared so it had to be that one. He paired this with a slim fit shirt from TM Lewin, navy bow tie from Red Herring, navy braces from Next and tan brogues from Autograph at Marks & Spencer. Matt’s best man wore a navy suit and shirt from Next.

My bridesmaids wore a dress from Debut at Debenhams – it fitted both of them perfectly and was a great find! The silver shrug was from Monsoon.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (24)

We booked a vintage double decker bus from Belle Vue Coaches in Stockport as our transport. I travelled with my bridesmaids and mum to the church in the bus and then we travelled down to the venue after the wedding. Alan the bus driver was a legend – he managed to navigate the small country roads to get us all there in one piece.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (37)

Andrew Keher was our photographer and I would 100% recommend him! Andy was amazing on the day and was fab throughout the whole process of booking and our engagement shoot. Andy does natural really well, we didn’t want to have lots of group shots but wanted to remember those little moments throughout the day. That’s what Andy does so well and after the wedding he posted little sneak peeks to Facebook which kept us going until we received our wooden box in the post. He puts so much thought into what he does and really cares about the whole experience for the couples he works with. Just amazing – money well spent!

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (28)

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (39)

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (32)

On the wedding day I carried a bouquet of wild flowers from The Flower Farm. It was beautiful, smelled amazing and Clare put some peonies in there too, which are my favourite flowers!

To decorate, we bought three buckets of wild flowers from Clare. We had jam jars on the tables so this allowed us to create a rustic feel to the arrangements. Clare also made the bridesmaids bouquets, some flower hair clips and all of the buttonholes. We also bought 100 stems of gypsophila, which we suspended from the ceiling.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (42)

Our venue dresser Harri Bradburn came up with some lovely ideas for the venue which included a little area for our guests where they could take a picture using an Instax camera or write us a message using the typewriter. On the tables she put some advice cards for our guests to give us advice for a happy marriage. There were some interesting ones! Harri spent so much time on the little details that really made the difference on the day.

The room just looked stunning! We had lots of bunting, lace panels with fairy lights and lots of jam jars! Our friends were very generous and we borrowed some beautiful pieces to use in the venue. My friend Kath loaned us the tea trolley that the cake sat on and the stepladders that were adorned with flowers on the stage. At my hen do my friends gave me some little trinkets that we used to dress the venue on the day. My bridesmaids both had some keepsakes made for us so we used those as well. It was lovely to include those little personal touches.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (40)

For our wedding cake we wanted Victoria sponge (as we both love it) and we were really keen on having tiered naked cake. We met with Annalise from One Sweet Day who immediately understood what we wanted. It was even better that I expected and the bunting was a gorgeous finishing touch. It was delicious too!

We knew early on that we wanted afternoon tea for our wedding meal – we’ve become a bit obsessed! My friend Wendy (from work) and Anne were the perfect choice as this is their forte! They also provided all of the vintage china that our guests used. We met with them a few times to decide what we were going to have – the lemon drizzle cake is their speciality and went down a treat on the day!  We also love pizza so early in the planning process we found a few companies that have pizza vans. We knew we had to have one so we contacted Honest Crust who were so lovely and provided us with the best pizza’s we’ve had. The salads were also delicious and went down well. We bought the wine from Majestic Wines and went with a Sauvignon Blanc and a Pinot Blush. Matt was in charge of beer and contacted Dunham Massey Brewery to order a keg of their Summer Meadow ale and cider for our guests. This went down really well especially with the men attending!

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (31)

At the reception Matt and I decided to have a sweetheart table. We were so happy we did this as it gave us some time to ourselves to catch up after the wedding. Everyone says your wedding day goes so fast but I think this helped us to have a moment for just us.

In terms of entertainment, Matt’s mum arranged for the Haydock Male Voice Choir to sing at the church. We chose a few songs for them to sing: Embraceable You, Cwm Rhondda and a few others – everyone was in tears as it was so emotional and sounded amazing.

For the reception we had an outdoor seating area with some hay bales and outdoor games and we booked a DJ, Paul Leffler, on recommendation from one of our friends. We gave him a list of songs we love and he managed to fit them all in and get everyone up dancing. Our first dance was When I Fall in Love by Nat King Cole – we loved that it is a classic and suited us as a couple.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (44)

Others fab suppliers we used on the day included Nicola at Johnson Hairdressing Group in Wigan, who did mine and my bridesmaids’ hair and our makeup was done by the fantastic Mika Johnson. We hired our folding wooden chairs from The Chairman Company, who were very reasonably priced and provided easy delivery to the venue. Our wedding rings were from Mr Allan, the same jewellers that Matt bought my engagement ring from. Matt had his grandad’s ring re-sized and I had a white gold band specially made to fit the round shape of my ring. Our confetti was from Shropshire Petals – we went with the Vintage Daydream mix, which I think this summed up the day perfectly!

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (51)

We would recommend our wedding venue to other couples that want control over what they do on their big day. The location is in the lovely village of Dunham Massey and has some outdoor space that can be used as well. Andrew, the caretaker is so helpful and lives next door so was on hand if we needed any help. I was amazed when we were looking at venues how much money couples are charged for various things (corkage, cake cutting etc.) so if you want to save some money this is a really good way to do it.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (45)

Meeting Matt at the top of the altar was my favourite moment of the day – it was all worth it at that point. I was close to tears all the way up the aisle but managed to keep it together. Matt said his favourite moment was when we were outside on the hay bales with all of our friends.

A Vintage Village Hall Wedding (c) Andrew Keher (46)

We haven’t been on our honeymoon yet but we’re planning on going to Italy at the end of September. We want to go to Florence, Rome and then spend some time on the Amalfi Coast. We’re really looking to it – with all the saving for the wedding we’ve not been away for years! We did manage to get a few nights away after the wedding to chill out. We stayed at The Drawing Room in Powys.

Everyone says this but my top tip to other Brides Up North is to do what makes you happy as a couple – it’s your day. It was a little easier for us to do this as we paid for the wedding so we didn’t feel obliged but I think there are ways to get what you want while keeping everyone else happy. And make sure you have some time to just you on the day.

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