Charlotte Balbier

Brownies’ Honour! A Scouting Real Wedding At Theatre Royal, York – Claire & Andrew

November 13th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Alex Knight Photography

If you’re going to theme a wedding, you may as well do it properly.  Or at least that was today’s newlyweds’ motto (that and “Be Prepared” of course) when planning their entirely Scout and Guide themed wedding.

I’ve been looking forward to sharing this fun and fabulous day with you.  Campfires at the ready, it’s Claire & Andrew’s big day…

Images by Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Claire says:  We got engaged on 12th August 2012 at Whitby Abbey.  I had just been on a JEKA adventure with my Guide & Ranger groups to Adelboden in Switzerland via Disneyland Paris on the way back. I was very tired and hadn’t showered in 2 days! I had managed to change my pants and brush my teeth though – small things to make a long coach journey bearable!

Andrew had been clearing out the Scout stores and I had to suffer a variety of vintage gas lamps in the kitchen. Upon collecting me he declared that he found a Scout campsite willing to have said lamps; "It’s a bit of a drive but you can tell me about your trip in the car." I was too exhausted to argue.

It turned out the "bit of a drive" was Scarborough; a likely story. I had an inkling that Andrew might propose but didn’t think he would be so cruel.  Meanwhile I kept looking at the road signs wistfully that said Whitby – my favourite place in the entire world. I had a nap; woke up to tell Andrew off for nearly ploughing into the back of a tractor; fell asleep again and eventually woke up in a car park.

"This doesn’t look like a Scout campsite."
"Do you not know where you are?"
"*Sigh* no"
"Look out of the window to your right."
"*Sees Whitby Abbey* oh… OH!"

I guess what the game is; immediately feel sick, think I’m about to ramble and ruin everything and promptly clam up.  Andrew and I go for an ice cream and a walk around the Abbey.

Andrew gets on one knee and pops the question. I squeak and nod. Andrew then gets extra Brownie points by reading a love letter from Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn (one of my idols). He was going to memorise it but it was too hard! .

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

We got married at Barley Hall in York on 18th May 2013 and had the reception at the De Grey Ballroom at the Theatre Royal. 

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

We wanted something historical and a little bit different to a modern hotel. We were never going to get married in church so we needed to widen the search. We loved Temple Newsham in Leeds but it was very booked up and the amount of chasing we had to do with marquee people started to get a bit silly.

As we had a lot of guests travelling we looked to York. I always enjoyed day trips there with my Mum and there is history around every corner; plus it has an abundance of hotels for every budget and a major train station!

The Great Hall in Barley Hall is decorated with white roses – perfect for a Yorkshire girl and it still has the medieval fireplace in the centre. Andrew wanted a small ceremony (promptly forgetting how large his family is!) due to stage fright – speeches he can do but being “on stage” for something so important and intimate brought us both out in the heebie jeebies! The exhibition when we got married was “Horrible Histories” – I’ve got a full set of the books; cue one very excited bride. I’m proud to say even the costume for “Stupid Death” was on show plus a skeleton and a stuffed rat. What can I say? I love my history!

A Google search for “large venue hire York” revealed the De Grey Rooms. Lindsey was possibly the most excited, lovely and welcoming person I’ve ever spoken to on the phone. Once I revealed the theme she was ecstatic – her Mum was a Brown Owl and got on board with the theme straight away!

Alex Knight Photography

We walked from each venue in York. The heavens opened in the morning and I was willing the forecast to be right and that it would pass by the time we needed to leave.  Thankfully, the rain stopped by lunch time and we were ready to rock n roll!

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Our theme was Scouts & Guides – we both volunteer for the movements and it’s how we met. We were both volunteering on the Physical Zone at Wings 2009 in Berkshire.  We didn’t really have a colour scheme as such but sapphire blue and purple did make an appearance – my favourite colours.

Alex Knight Photography

My bouquet was white & antique roses with blue thistles by The Floral Studio – blending Yorkshire and Scotland.  Twisted Willow Floristry did our table garland and herb pots. 

Alex Knight Photography

I had a few requirements for my wedding dress: I wanted some sort of sleeve (narrows the search right down); to be corseted and to have covered buttons rather than the criss cross of corseting shown on the back.

I was willing to try on pretty much anything at the start of the search but quickly realised that sleeves or straps were high on my wish list. I’m short at 5ft2 and I’ve got a good bosom so I didn’t want anything to highlight my top heaviness!

The Bridal Boutique in Guiseley was where I ended up finding my dress: Angelina by Diane Harbridge. There were so many dresses in the range (and now the new range) that I loved. I loved the way it pulled me right in on the top half but my legs weren’t constrained.  

The back of the dress was really detailed – that’s what most people see in the ceremony.  I could hear so many comments as we walked through York complimenting the dress – I felt fantastic!

Alex Knight Photography

We asked the groomsmen and ushers to wear their best suits and I got them a tie and our Scottish best man wore his full Bonnie Prince Charlie kilt get up.

Bridesmaids were trickier – two of them weren’t in the country during the planning. I sent an email with links to dresses that I had found online and by a stroke of luck all three liked the same dress. Monsoon had come to the rescue. We got a sapphire blue dress called Meadow and my Mum made ivory sashes to jazz them up a bit.

Alex Knight Photography

During the ceremony Andrew’s Dad’s quartet played various pieces from the TV show the Tudors. I’m a big fan of Jonathan Rhys Meyers and I got permission from Trevor Morris who wrote the music for the show to use it in our ceremony.

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

My favourite part of the day was probably walking through York. On the way I got stopped and had photos taken with tourists.  We had photos taken with bridesmaids, best men and groomsmen taken at the doors of York Minster and we could see a crowd of about 200 people stopping and watching.  I couldn’t resist some photo bombing of photos on the walk back to the hall (bad bride!)

Overall, the seeing all the hard work come together was fantastic.

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

We went to town on the theme.  All tables at the reception were named after real Scout & Guide patrols and each guest got a specially made wedding badge – quickly popped into pockets and bags by the many Scouters and Guiders at the wedding!

Mum made a necker for each guest to wear and also bunting from donated Scout & Guide neckers.  Our table centres were old Scout & Guide books and we displayed the gas lamps used in the proposal on the fireplaces. 

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Andrew made a considerable amount of wine for the reception – this went down a lot better than expected! We made our own pub quiz and then we had a good old boogie to some cheesy classics.

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

Alex Knight Photography

My bridesmaid’s Mum made our cake. This was very fitting as she made my naming cake and some of my birthday cakes growing up. We had three layers: fruit, chocolate and Victoria sponge. Yummy! The wedding cake had Scout & Guide emblems around the top layer and on the very top was a tent made from icing with two pairs of feet sticking out and our personalised woggles. 

Alex Knight Photography

Andrew’s an engineer and loves trains so for our honeymoon we went from Leeds to London and then to Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin all by train! We flew back to London to see Les Miserables and then one final train back to Leeds.  When we got back Andrew asked for a beach holiday next time!

Alex Knight Photography

My top tip for other Brides Up North is this:  When you enter Wedding World; be prepared to leave common sense at the door.  You can be in a classic no win situation as no matter what you say you are immediately accused of being a Bridezilla.

Weddings have a weird habit of turning people a bit strange – and I’m not including the bride here! You will hear so many different daft comments and questions. Just remember: “There’s nowt as queer as folk!” & “Keep Calm and Carry on!”

Alex Knight Photography

Congratulations Claire & Andrew!

Fancy seeing your own Real Wedding on Brides Up North?  Here’s how.

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Alex Knight Photography

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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Were YOU Caught On Camera At The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition?

April 29th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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If you visited us – and almost 1,000 of you did! -  at our massive Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition at the National Railway Museum then chance is that you might just have been caught on camera… either messing around in one of our fabulous retro photobooths (these images are courtesy of Booth Revolution) or by our roving photographer Peter Boyd Photography.

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Hope you had your lippy on!

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding FairBooth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

=Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Peter Boyd Photography at the National Railway Musuem Wedding Fair

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Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

Booth Revolution at The National Railway Museum Wedding Fair

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If you didn’t make it last Sunday, we’d love to see you at one (or all!) of our remaining events this Spring:

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The Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition at  Thorp Perrow, North Yorkshire – Sunday 12th May 2013

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The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Wedding Exhibition at The Bowdon Rooms, Altrincham – Sunday 19th May 2013

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The Brides Up North Luxury Wedding Exhibition at Rise Hall, East Yorkshire – Sunday 9th June 2013

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Click here to pre-register for all our events.  We can’t wait to see you! 

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Peter Boyd Photography and Booth Revolution

This was a Brides Up North Event

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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THIS SUNDAY! – York’s Most Beautiful Bridal Event: The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition at The National Railway Museum

April 19th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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NRM Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition Spring 2013

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Out of office alerts are on!  The Brides Up North team are now officially on lockdown preparing for our newest and most exciting event in this Spring’s calendar – our beautiful Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition at National Railway Museum, York. 

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It’s been a year in the planning, and we are busy putting the finishing touches on what looks set to be a really very special day – think luxury with a vintage twist – coming your way this Sunday from 10am – 5:30pm!

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I don’t know what it is, but there seems to be a real buzz of excitement in the air (both on and offline) about this one, and EVERYONE seems to be talking about it.  It could be the quirky and stunning venue, the fact that I haven’t shut up about it for months, that they are chatting about it on the radio, or that we’ve got what I consider to be the very finest selection of exhibitors in the area ready and waiting all under one huge roof.

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Just don’t miss it. No lie in nor Sunday roast could beat this.  If you are tying the knot in Yorkshire, you need to be at this event.  

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Join Brides Up North and the region’s very finest wedding suppliers in this unique and stunning setting amongst the beautiful vintage trains for York’s most beautiful bridal event this Sunday 21st April 2013.

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The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition

National Railway Museum, York

Sunday 21st April 2013

10am – 5.30pm

FREE ENTRY 

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This is one absolutely amazing line up! Waiting to greet you will be Rebecca Jane’s Secret Attic, Booth Revolution, Buttercream Cupcakes, Cat Hepple Photography, Cordelia & Co, Couture Cake Design, Curvy Bridal, Damian Hall Photography, Damigella D’onore, Damselle Tiaras, DG Sound & Light, Dirk Van Der Werff, Eyecapture, Firenza Floral Design, Glen Roughead Swing, Gray Events Ltd, Helen Guy, Iain Henderson Designs, Jess Petrie Photography, Joel Skingle Photography, Leafy Couture, Limelight Photobooth Hire, Love Bouquets, Perfectly Practical Parties, Peter Boyd Photography, The Little Bridal Company, Twisted Willow Floristry, Victoria Farr Make Up & Hair Specialist, A Vintage Affair Ltd, White Petal Design, The Candy Stand, Angels Carrying Savage Weapons, Simply Bows & Chair Covers, Millesime Cake Boutique, KM Cakes and Cupcakes, Kayti Lauren Weddings, The Wedding Institute, Tiamo Stationery, LMS Events, Love To Marry, Alison Barrett Millinery, The Yorkshire Heritage Bus Company, Love My Dress Blog and more…

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As well as getting just a little air time on the blog, Facebook and Twitter feeds, you might hear excitement levels building over on the airwaves of Minster FM and elsewhere online and in the press too. We can’t wait to see you there! 

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As usual with all of our shows, Brides Up North blog readers are being offered the opportunity to beat the crowds and register for a special little Brides Up North welcome pack (packed with some tiny treats, sugary things and glossy mags), completely free of charge, and while stocks last (we always clear out at every show!).  All you need to do is pre-register below and we will save your goodies for you and grant you speedy entry at the desk.  Simples.

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Fill in your details below, marking “NATIONAL RAILWAY” in the subject line and quoting “VIP”. You can collect your goody bag upon entry to the Luxury Wedding Exhibition.   Only the bride need register for larger groups.

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Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

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Your Message

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You can also email julia@bridesupnorth.co.uk if you do not wish to use the contact form. Goody bags are limited and subject to availability. We operate a first come, first served policy.

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Exhibitor enquiries for all Brides Up North events in 2013 – please email contact@bridesupnorth.co.uk – you can also pre-register for all of these events NOW!

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National Railway Museum, York – Sunday 21st April 2013

(Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition)

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The Bowdon Rooms, Altrincham – Sunday 19th May 2013

(Luxury & Vintage Wedding Exhibition – 40 exhibitors)

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Rise Hall, East Yorkshire – Sunday 9th June 2013

(Luxury Wedding Exhibition – 40 exhibitors)

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Ramside Hall Hotel, Durham – Sunday 8th September 2013

(Super Showcase Grand Wedding Exhibition – 100 exhibitors)

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Allerton Castle, North Yorkshire – Sunday 15th September 2013

(Luxury Wedding Exhibition – 40 exhibitors)

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Hardwick Hall Hotel, Sedgefield, Co Durham – Sunday 29th September 2013

(Bridal Bonanza Grand Wedding Exhibition – 80 exhibitors)

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The Mansion, Leeds – Sunday 6th October 2013

(Luxury Wedding Exhibition – 40 exhibitors)

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Nostell Priory, Wakefield – Sunday 13th October 2013

(Luxury Wedding Exhibition – 40 exhibitors)

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Brides Up North

This is a Brides Up North event

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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It’s Coming…

March 29th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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NRM Luxury & Vintage Grand Wedding Exhibition Spring 2013

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Save the date. 

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Pre-registration for York’s most beautiful bridal event, and our largest Yorkshire show to date is now open.  Don’t miss it.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Image © 2013 Brides Up North

This is a Brides Up North Event

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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Sparkling White: A Real Winter Wedding In York – Anna & Lee

January 21st, 2013 | Julia Braime

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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Anna and Lee’s sparkling Winter wedding feels like the perfect way to begin a fresh new week here on the wedding blog.  With tons of twinkle, crisp whites and beautiful images by super talented Brides Up North Featured Supplier Dominic Wright Photography, Anna and Lee’s day is inspiration all the way.  Enjoy. 

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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Anna says:  We got engaged at the Minster in York on the 14th February 2012. I wasn’t expecting it all at as Lee hates Valentine’s Day so I was very shocked and thrilled.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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We were married on Sunday 23rd December 2012 at The Hospitium, Museum gardens, York.  We loved the 14th century building and the mixture of the stone work and pillars downstairs and more modern upstairs. We thought it would be the perfect Christmas wedding venue. The setting in Museum gardens meant that we could have beautiful photographs (thanks to our amazing photographers!) in the Abbey ruins that are in the grounds of the park.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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I wanted a winter wonderland with lots of foliage, twinkle and Christmas touches.  I used a lot of white sparkle and then greens through the bridesmaid dresses and the foliage. 

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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We put a surprise guided bus tour on (with bubbly!) for all our guests. It picked the guests up from Hotel Du Vin, York and the guests then had a personalised tour of the city before being dropped at the venue of the wedding.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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I wanted a huge princess dress that was very classy and beautiful. I bought my stunning Pronovias dress from Brides of Harrogate. I wanted the groom, best man and fathers to be in classic three piece suits. The groom’s suit was a William Hunt (Savile Row) suit.  The bridesmaid’s dresses were from Brides of Harrogate also and were made by the designer Mori Lee.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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My make-up was by Julia Spink and the beautiful hair (bride, bride’s mother, bridesmaids and flower girls was all done by Hannah Green.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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I had recorded the children in my school singing a beautiful and moving song to be played through ceremony (which had many of our guests in tears). Then we had Christmas songs playing throughout the drinks reception.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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Its so hard to pick a favourite part of the day! The reaction of everyone (including the groom who cried) when I walked into the room, the relaxed atmosphere and the knowledge that everyone was absolutely loving the day and buzzing with it and of course wearing my stunning dress and seeing my groom looking gorgeous, as were all of my guests. It really was the most amazing day.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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I carried a bouquet of white roses with eucalyptus and sparkle. I wanted something very simple and classic that wouldn’t date in the photographs.  Our florist was the amazing and talented Susan Dudley-Smith.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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We had personalised crackers which matched the incredible stationery designed and made by my sister in law, Kate Wells. She made the most stunning ‘Advent Calendar’ invitations for our guests to open on the days leading up to the wedding. The guests loved them! There were also personalised teddies for the flower girls to open at the meal.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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The delicious catering was by Bradshaws of York.  My mother in law made a beautiful ivory wedding cake with flowers on it to tie in with the theme.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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Given the time of year and the fact that our daughter is only two, we didn’t fancy a long hall flight for our honeymoon. We ended up booking a luxury cottage in Northumberland, so we had five nights relaxing as a family, with meals out and beautiful walks on the beach every day.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is to make sure you stick to your guns about the sort of day you want. If you are happy and relaxed on the day all your guests will be too. Unfortunately the saying is true – you get what you pay for, so pick out the things that are really important to you and then see if you can cut back (or make your own) in other areas. Guests will love your personalised and individual touches.

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York Winter Wedding - Dominic Wright Photography

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Congratulations Anna & Lee!

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North – here’s how

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  – Images © 2013 Dominic Wright Photography

Dominic Wright Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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