Brides Up North

midday movie. it’s a classic. gemma & niall

December 17th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Niall and Gemma from Silver Sixpence Films on Vimeo.

It’s been a real treat to drop in an extra little feature every day at noon this week as we celebrate our readers’ real life love stories, courtesy of Brides Up North Sponsor, Silver Sixpence Films.

Popcorn at the ready, let’s hear from Gemma and Niall.

Nial&Gemma2

gemma says: Niall proposed in our living room between visiting my parents the weekend before Christmas and heading to Niall’s mum and dads for Christmas day. It was lovely that it was just the two of us at home.

Niall&Gemma1

I wore a Lusan Mandongus gown from Teokath Wimbledon: all the dresses I tried on were beautiful so it was a tough decision! In the end I went with a designer I felt fitted my body shape the best and the dress that I felt was the most flattering. I absolutely love, love, love my wedding dress and feel much more emotionally attached to it than I ever imagined I would.

Niall&Gemma4

With a marquee in Niall’s mums and dad’s garden we had a blank canvas. We were quite relaxed about style and theme (just going with stuff we liked) but ‘classic fresh marquee wedding’ probably sums it up quite well.

We both really enjoyed the ceremony and have memories of smiling and laughing a lot. It’s the first time we both saw each other on the day and so was amazing. It is quite a surreal experience and over very quickly, you forget there are 100 people there watching you. My cousin commented after the event that the ceremony was the most fun one he had ever been to!

Niall&Gemma3

Featured images are video stills.

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when we collide. a stylish white wedding in Northumberland – tina & andy

December 9th, 2014 | Julia Braime

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (36)

Tina & Andy’s big day is just sublime.  From their chic styling, to their outdoor wedding breakfast, personalised brew and simple yet special personal touches, this is a celebration that has real class.

And take a look at their randomly captured proposal video.  It’s moments that this that make life amazing. 

With images by Little Miss Boyco.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (7)

tina says: For our 10 year anniversary, we decided to have a big trip to celebrate – and what better way to do that than going to Vegas and Orlando! Little did I know, Andy was planning his own little surprise. In the months leading up to the holiday, Andy had spoken to my parents about his plans and had also found the perfect engagement ring, with the help of my little sister.

On the second last day of the holiday, we went to Universal Studios in Orlando for the “Cinematic Spectacular” – a light, laser, water and firework display in celebration of 100 years of Universal. At the end of the show, as we walked out with the crowds, we reminisced about our favourite parts of the holiday and how the show was the perfect way to round off the trip. As we chatted, Andy stopped and turned to me and said there was just one more thing that would make the holiday more perfect. And this is where he got down on one knee and proposed! Amongst the blur of tears and strangers clapping and cheering, I accepted!

In a crazy twist, the proposal was actually captured on video by one of the passers-by, which was posted on YouTube a couple of months later, and which Andy randomly stumbled across a few months after that!

If you would like to see the moment for yourself, take a look. It is so strange being able to watch it back but also awesome we have this memory to cherish forever!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (16)

We chose to get married at High House Farm in Northumberland as it had everything we were looking for in a venue – beautiful countryside surroundings, delicious locally sourced food, a cute little play area for the kids – and of course, the fact it’s a brewery just added to its charm (myself and Andy are both avid beer drinkers)!

We especially loved the outdoor barn and knew it would be the perfect place to have the ceremony, the wedding breakfast and the evening party. We also loved the fact there was no package to adhere to – we were allowed to choose our own food, drink, entertainment, and decorations.

The main thing we wanted was for our wedding to be as personal as possible – we wanted elements of “us” in as much as we could. It was really important that the wedding reflected us as a couple and not just a wedding package. We also wanted to keep it quite soft, rustic and romantic. In keeping with the venue, we decided to adopt a country theme – that is soft colours, floral prints, twine, and lots of candles and fairy lights.

We decided to have olive green as it is one of my favourite colours and we thought it would fit well with the country theme we wanted.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (21)

My dress was a Maggie Sottero from Wedding Essentials in Newcastle. I had an idea of the kind of dress I wanted – something soft, elegant and which was a bit different to the “typical” wedding dress. I spent several months dress-shopping and thought I had finally chosen the dress I wanted which ticked all the boxes however it cost a bit more than I had budgeted. As fate would have it, in the very last shop on my very last day of a “just-in-case-I-see-anything-else” shopping trip, I saw a replica of the dress I had my eye on – in the sale! I tried it on and knew it was the one – long, soft lace, with a low v-back with just a little touch of bling. Lucky for me as a few weeks later, the store closed down!

In keeping with the fact we wanted to have the wedding as relaxed and informal as we could, we decided not to hire or buy suits. Instead, Andy wore a suit he already had and loved – it was a navy three piece suit (jacket, waistcoat and trousers) from Burton and he teamed it with a white shirt from Next, a skinny tie in the same olive green as the bridesmaid dress and some brown brogues also from Burtons. As Andy is a big fan of comic books, he also wore Wolverine socks and handmade Wolverine cufflinks, a present I had bought him for his birthday earlier on in the year.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (26)

My little sister was the only bridesmaid – she wore a long chiffon, one-shouldered dress from Dessy in moss green form Wild Brides in Sunderland.

I saw an advert at work that a colleague made paper flowers and bouquets out of recycled materials – we thought this was really interesting and unique and so contacted her to see what she was able to do for our wedding. We found she could customise the flowers (using different materials, decorations etc) and it would also work out a lot cheaper than real flowers. Coupled with the fact me and Andy both suffer from hayfever and the flowers would be a lasting memory of the day, we jumped at the chance!

Joy from Martha Makes made us two bouquets and nine buttonholes from sheet music we had chosen ourselves. We bought cream paper from Paperchase, printed out one of our favourite songs (Iris by The Goo Goo Dolls) and had them made into flowers with pearls in the centre. We also wanted a leaf adding to the flowers to give it a bit more of a floral design – Joy had never done this before but she was happy to play around with the idea and in the end, she made them out of green gardening magazine pages – they looked amazing! Organic, personal and one of a kind!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (27)

Wiesia Bojko was our photographer for the day – we feel incredibly lucky we found her and that she was available! From our very first consultation, she came across as a very warm and friendly person – with a passion for her work and a portfolio to prove it. Our impression of her has not changed one bit even after the wedding. She was professional and friendly, and has a very natural way of capturing the special moments and little details. I would (and have!) recommended her to friends and family!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (33)

We had asked friends and family to save their glass bottles and jars for us since we got engaged, which we decorated with tea lights, twine and green and cream ribbon.

We decided to have real flowers dotted around the venue using the glass bottles and jars we had collected. I had seen online that it was possible to buy the flowers from a wholesaler and make up the displays yourself – and it would be considerably cheaper than ordering from a florist. As we wanted a soft, romantic, country theme, we decided to buy lots of baby’s breath, a few purple thistles and some light pink lilies to decorate the venue. We bought the flowers from a wholesaler in Gateshead (Premier Flowers) and me and my sisters put them into the bottles and jars the day before the wedding.

Me and Andy chose fabric for the bunting from Dainty Supplies in Washington and my sister (who is a dab hand with a sewing machine!) made them for us. We had three different types of bunting – one was made out of hessian which I painted white hearts onto using a stencil and fabric paint, one was hessian which I painted “Love Is Sweet” onto for the sweetie table, and the rest of the bunting was alternate triangles of olive green, floral and hessian. We also decorated the barn with fairy lights and lanterns from eBay.

We went through all of our photo albums and chose some of our favourite photos from our time together which we thought represented us a couple (e.g. festivals, beer and fancy dress!). We printed them off, trimmed them down to look like polaroids and wrote little captions beneath them – we pinned them onto a piece of twine with little wooden pegs and hung them from the walls.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (34)

We decided to give out beer bottles as favours as the venue was a working brewery and we knew a lot of our friends and family would love it! We went for a tasting session at the venue a few months prior and chose the beer we would use. Andy designed the label for the beer – calling it “Tandy’s Tipple” (a name our friends call us), and High House Farm printed the labels and stuck them on the bottle for us. We used the favours to double up as seating cards – I made little origami hearts using some paper I had bought in Paperchase and I learnt how to make them from a YouTube video and wrote our guests names on them and tied them to the bottles with twine.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (42)

We wanted to have cupcakes for the wedding as we felt they are more fun and informal. Andy’s sister and brother-in-law own their own restaurant and we enlisted the help of their dessert chef (Carley from Carley’s Cakes) to make us a selection of pastel-coloured cupcakes in various different flavours (e.g. cherry, chocolate, gingerbread). We also had little bride and groom cupcakes made – the bride had a veil on the top (a cutting from my very own dress!) and had iced flowers and the groom had a little top hat and a bow tie. We had bought little Mr and Mrs cake thrones for them to sit on as well!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (50)

As Andy is a DJ, we decided to choose all our own music from the ceremony to the meal to the evening. We chose a selection of songs we love, and thought were in keeping with each part of the day, and mixed them together and let them play either through speakers. We had everything from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Westlife, N-Trance to Manowar! In the evening, the best man’s father very kindly lent us his lighting and sound system so we were able to have a proper disco.

Me and my dad danced to The Carpenters “Yesterday Once More” – a song which means a lot to both of us.

Me and Andy’s first dance was to Biffy Clyro’s  “Many of Horror” – which isn’t a typical first dance song but a song which we both love, invokes great memories, and which was a little more alternative.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (54)

We bought a cheap mirror from a high street store, and we wrote the seating plan for the wedding breakfast on it and displayed it during the day. On the night, we took out the mirror and used the frame as a photo prop.We had also made speech boards by ordering speech bubble shapes from eBay, and covering them with blackboard vinyl. We asked our guests to write a message on the board and pose with them in photographs.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (55)

I would recommend High House Farm to other couples who love the countryside, love good food, love good beer and the option to create the wedding they want!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (59)

It sounds cliché but I loved every single part of the day, from seeing all the guests during the ceremony, to walking up/down the aisle, to laughing/crying during the toasts, to dancing my shoes off on the night (literally – I swapped my cream lace heels for my lovely pink Converse trainers!)

If I had to choose one, I really loved seeing all our friends and family stood around us in a circle at the end of the night, singing Green Day’s “Time of Your Life”. It is a song we both love and to see the people we love singing it back to us was just amazing.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (61)

Two weeks after our wedding, we jetted off on a 4 week honeymoon around South East Asia. It was a trip we had both wanted to do all our lives. We spent 5 days in Tokyo, Japan – eating insane amounts of sushi and ramen and sightseeing, and then we went on a two week cruise which stopped at some incredible ports – we shopped in Osaka and Okinawa, we went to a hot springs resort in Taiwan, we ate fresh seafood and visited the Cu Chi tunnels in Vietnam and we ate from a hawkers market and watched the skytrees in Singapore. We then spent a week in Hong Kong – visiting family and sightseeing. It was an incredible trip and something we would love to do again!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (80)

It sounds simple but our top tip for other Brides Up North would be to make YOUR wedding what YOU want it to be. We knew from the start we wanted a wedding that reflected us and our relationship – we are so glad we didn’t just choose a wedding package on offer.

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (79)

Another top tip – spreadsheets! Make spreadsheets for everything! They keep you organised and save so much stress!

a white wedding in Northumberland (c) Little Miss Boyco (75)

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love blossoms. a white wedding in Derbyshire – rena & yianni

November 26th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Wedding Photography

Rena and Yianni’s big and beautiful celebration, filled with flowers and candles, oozes old Hollywood charm.  Their unique and beautiful venue and white on white colour scheme sets the scene perfectly for a day of glamour and elegance (and energetic Greek dancing)…

Roll out the red carpet!

With images by Butterworth Photography.

Wedding Photography

rena says: We booked a long weekend away to Belgium and Bruges for my birthday and to enjoy the Christmas markets. I didn’t realise that Yianni was planning to propose while we were away. We went out for a romantic meal on the first night and I found it really odd that he wouldn’t give the waiter his coat and thought it was because he didn’t trust them so I did the same thing! I didn’t realise it’s because he had the ring with him. He then asked me to go for a romantic walk around the palace gardens but I opted for chocolate waffles instead and put his plans for a proposal on the first night to an end!

On the second day we took a day trip to Bruges. Yianni asked me to go for a romantic horse and carriage ride but I again opted for waffles instead and ruined his Plan B. We then climbed 400 steps to the top of the Bell tower and Yianni asked me to pose for a photo with him. I didn’t realise he’d set the camera to video mode and before you know it he was down on one knee and had manage to catch the proposal on camera.

We were married on 27 April 2014. Exactly two years from the date we first met.

Wedding Photography

We wanted to get married in a venue that was unforgettable. The Devonshire Dome reminded us of a piazza and we knew it was the perfect choice for our wedding.

It’s a gorgeous drive up through Derbyshire to Buxton which is such a picturesque place. I knew I wanted an iconic and memorable building for our special day and was keen to avoid using a hotel. There aren’t many places that fit 450 guests for a sit down meal and we were so lucky to find the Dome!

Wedding Photography

I really wanted a garden wedding full of blossom which is why we picked the Spring date. I also wanted a twist of both Hollywood and Grecian glamour. Not an obvious combination, but it all seemed to come together on the day.

Wedding Photography

Wedding Photography

I wanted a classic princess style dress and loved the pearl and diamante detail around the waist and the sweetheart neckline.

Yianni wore a black tuxedo which we bought while shopping in the USA.

My bridesmaids wore nude blush maxi dresses from Lipsy. They all looked stunning. The girls had bouquets of white hydrangeas and I wanted to incorporate that into my bouquet. I wanted a bouquet that was completely rounded so you could see flowers from all angles. I incorporated white roses, stocks, hydrangeas and white berries with stephanotis, provided by Nadia Di Tulio.

Wedding Photography

We had flowers matching my bouquets on the candleabras and the top table which were also provided by Nadia Di Tulio. We hired in blossom trees and a top table blossom arch from Essential Wedding Hire.

Wedding Photography

For favours, we gave out mini whisky bottles for the men and crystal heart tea light holders for the ladies.

Wedding Photography

Cupid Carriages provided a white vintage Rolls Royce for us on the day.

Wedding Photography

Wedding Photography

Wedding Photography

We had a three course meal along with Greek bread, starters and dips and bacon sarnies for those who stayed to party until the early hours with us.

Delicious Designs in Belper made our wedding cake. We chose a 6 tier wedding cake covered in blossom petals with scattered diamantes. Rather than traditional fillings we had white chocolate chunks with fresh raspberries.

Wedding Photography

Wedding Photography

Wedding Photography

To round off a fabulous day we had a live five piece Greek band with lots of Greek dancing.

Wedding Photography

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to choose a timeless colour palette. I wanted to keep everything quite neutral to ensure that I wouldn’t look back on my pictures and regret the colour I’d chosen or think the colour looked old fashioned.

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A Little Bit Vintage. Mori Lee & Peonies For A Stylish Wedding At Arley Hall & Gardens – Jenna & Martin

July 8th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Let’s keep the Real Wedding pretty coming this morning with this stunning and stylish celebration at Arley Hall & Gardens.  Jenna & Martin opted for a modern and muted colour scheme for their beautiful big day, dotted with gorgeous vintage inspired details. 

As soon as I saw her choice of heels, I knew that today’s bride and I would be sartorially compatible.  Jenna, I like your style.

With images by Lisa Howard Photography.

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Jenna says: We got engaged in Stratford Upon Avon on 24th March 2012. Martin had arranged a weekend away for us and luckily it turned out to be one of the hottest weekends of the year! He proposed whilst we were sitting on the banks of the River Avon with a bottle of bubbly! It was perfect!

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Our wedding day was 23rd May 2014.  We got married at Arley Hall & Gardens, Cheshire.

We had actually been out looking at another venue which we were really disappointed with, when we drove past a signpost for Arley. We had seen it online but thought it looked way over our budget to even consider it an option. However, we decided to go and have a nosey. We didn’t have an appointment booked at Arley but the staff were so accommodating and the venue was so perfect! It was just what we wanted with the two aspects of the stately home and the rustic barn for the evening reception.

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Styling wise, it just seemed to work out in the end that everything was a little bit vintage with a modern edge. We opted for a colour scheme of grey and white – we wanted to keep everything quite neutral as the rooms in the venue already have so many colours in them anyway; we didn’t want it to look too busy. Plus grey is my favourite colour!

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

I wore a lace mermaid style dress by Mori Lee from Always & Forever Bridal Boutique, St Helens. I had gone into the shop with the mind set that I definitely didn’t want a lace dress! However that soon changed. I also didn’t want a lace up corset style back and seeing as my dress had both I was reluctant to try it on, however after much persuasion I did and I loved it (but I did end up having the seamstress swap the lace ups for a zip)!

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

I carried a posy of white peonies from the floristry department of St Helens College.

I was really close to my nan who died a few years ago so really wanted to try and incorporate my memories of her into the wedding. I had a locket with a picture of her in it wrapped around my bouquet and a large photograph of her from my mum’s wedding with a candle burning.

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

Martin wore a dark blue slim fit three piece suit from TM Lewin, Liverpool. His shirt was white with accents of blue from Hugo Boss. His shoes were brown brogues from Bertie in Steve Madden, Manchester. 

Mori Lee for a modern vintage wedding at Arley Hall & Gardens (c) Lisa Howard Photography

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Keeping It Natural. Mori Lee For A Real Wedding At Woodhill Hall – Stacy & David

June 17th, 2014 | Julia Braime

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

Today we join Stacy and David for their relaxed and pretty Real Wedding at Brides Up North Featured Supplier venue Woodhill Hall.  The beautiful scenery and fab furnishings at this Northumberland home really do create a ready made backdrop, so Stacy sensibly kept her own decor light and natural to create a gorgeous day to say “I do”.

With images by Leighton Bainbridge Photography.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

Stacy says: David asked me to marry him on 3rd February 2013, in Hamsterly Forest in the trees.  We were married on Easter weekend (so that we could extend the celebration by another day!) in spring 2014, at Woodhill Hall, Northumberland.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

We loved Woodhill Hall because it was very laid back with amazing scenery and was dog friendly.  We wanted everyone to feel relaxed and have a good time and not feel too formal.

The couple who own the venue are willing to accommodate anything you want to make your day special. It’s a lovely relaxed atmosphere and such a special place.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

We chose a natural garden theme of whites and greens. We prefer understated beauty.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

I didn’t want a big over the top dress but something simple and pretty. I chose a Mori Lee wedding gown from Wedding Essentials in Newcastle. It was strapless with a sheer lace panel over the skirt and a small train. I didn’t wear a veil and instead twisted flowers into my hair.

David and his groomsmen wore morning suits from Greenwoods and the bridesmaids wore green and white strapless calf length dresses.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

My bouquet was made by a family friend and was artificial.  It was a combination of roses and woodland flowers including thistle so it looked like it was gathered from the garden.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

We chose Leighton Bainbridge Photography because he has an amazing talent at capturing the beauty of a picture without it being staged. We love his pictures.

 (c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

For our favours we bought some seeds online which were our table name cards but opened up as wild flower seeds for guests to take home to plant in the garden.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

Our cake was made by the my uncle and it was a three tier white iced cake with two layers of fruit and decorated with white roses and greenery.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

We had a roast lunch and guests had a choice of lamb or beef. The evening food was a Mexican buffet. We paid a corkage fee and supplied white and rose wine to all of our guests and a jug of Pimms with fruit and soft drinks.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

After the speeches and cutting the cake, we had a local DJ who entertained us all evening and we hired a company from Liverpool who provided a photo booth and a star lit dance floor.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

I planned a surprise honeymoon to Morocco and told David about it on the morning of the wedding.

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to be very organised. Make lists so not only you but also your bridesmaids and ushers know the basics too because it is impossible to try and do everything! 

(c) Leighton Bainbridge Photography - Woodhill Hall Wedding

Congratulations Stacy & David!

Fancy seeing your own Real Wedding on these pretty pages?  Here’s how.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Leighton Bainbridge Photography 

Woodhill Hall is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

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

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Wedstock. Soft Whites, Candles & Shots For A Real Wedding At Sheffield Town Hall – Clare & Philip

June 3rd, 2014 | Julia Braime

Samuel Docker Photography

This morning I’ve done something that when gave up the corporate rat race to be come a full time wedding blogger (you can read my story here) I thought that I would do all the time, but in the reality of deadlines, features schedules, event planning and all the time consuming minutiae of running a busy small business – never do.  Ladies, I’ve done a Carrie Bradshaw (albeit in Kurt Geiger rather than Manolo Blahnik) and decamped from Brides Up North HQ to my local coffee hot spot.

Sometimes you have to shake off the four walls of normality and mix things up a little to refuel your creativity.  Writers block?  What writers block (a homemade raspberry muffin and a vat of coffee later)?!

Inevitably, with change comes challenge, and a challenging Wi-Fi connection means that today’s Real Wedding feature comes to you a little later than planned, but (like the raspberry muffin!) the wait was totally worth it.

Clare and Philip’s wedding is contemporary (whilst still remaining a classic), stylish and cool, and any bride who nips out of her own reception for a quick drink with her girls gets serious kudos from me…

Images by Samuel Docker

Samuel Docker Photography

Clare says: We got engaged on Christmas Eve 2009. It was a complete surprise. Our tradition is to go for a meal on Christmas Eve before going out and that year Phil told me to drive to The Hilton in Sheffield. When we got there he had booked a room, he said he thought it would be different. In the room were candles and my Christmas presents. He then told me to close my eyes and he put a t shirt on me over my dress. I thought it was a band t shirt and my gift was tickets to a gig. He took me to the mirror and he’d drawn a design on the t shirt which read the right way to me and it said “I love you with all my heart will you marry me?” He was then next to me with a gorgeous ring. 

I obviously said yes and was thrilled to bits!

Samuel Docker Photography

We were married on 31st August 2013 at Sheffield City Hall

Phil actually found the venue, he liked it because of the detail of the building and the grandeur feeling inside. He had also played there a few years before so had a personal meaning to him.

When I was looking at the website for the City Hall I noticed that there was a competition to win the venue for your wedding, so I entered never expecting to win and I did!

I didn’t mention that I’d entered to Phil because I thought it would be a nice surprise if i did win but probably wouldn’t so wasn’t worth getting our hopes up. Well a letter arrived in the post and I had only gone and won the venue of our wedding! We were ecstatic and the Sheffield City Hall were brilliant throughout and really on board with what we wanted to do. 

Samuel Docker Photography

We didn’t need to travel far on the day, my Dad drove me to the City Hall where I spent the morning getting ready with my bridesmaids and Mum. Phil got ready at the Leopold Hotel just a two minute walk from the City Hall so he and his best man walked there!

Samuel Docker Photography

The theme of our day was soft, elegant and simple and we wanted guests to have a very romantic feel to the day with lots of candlelight. The evening reception theme was a surprise to everyone, only ourselves and parents knew about it: “Wedstock”. 

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Creams and whites were the main colours to give a soft romantic feel. The spindle back chairs were brushed vintage white and most of the table details were cream and white with pearl detail. The bridesmaids wore navy and the groom and groomsmen wore navy ties with grey suits.

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

I’m not a fussy dress kind of person so I wanted something elegant and simple. My dress was from Blissful Daze in Sheffield, it was one of the first bridal shops we tried and originally I picked the dress up because of the detail on the shoulders but that was all, but once it was on it felt perfect. It’s by Ellis Bridals. It has jewel embellishment on the hip and shoulders, a cowl back and button detail down the back.

I wore peep toe heels with a jewelled detail. I’m fairly tall for a girl but definitely wanted heels for the big day which was fine when I stood next to Phil but my poor Dad looks a little short!

We searched for some time for jewellery as I wanted understated jewellery but something that went with the detail on the dress. By chance we found the bracelet, earrings and hair piece in Debenhams and they went so well with the dress we immediately stopped looking for anything else.

I also carried with me a sixpence that my Grandad gave to me before the wedding, he said my Nanan had been saving it for my wedding day but sadly she is no longer with us so it was important to have that with me. The freesia flowers were also a symbol of my Nanan as they were one of her favourite flowers.

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

The bridesmaids wore navy maxi dresses from Coast and the groomsmen wore grey suits from Moss Bros.

Philip wore a Ted Baker suit. He was very picky and his suit took longer to pick than my dress!

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

I carried cream and white roses, veronicas, eustomia, white freesia and gypsophila by Janice Johnson Vintage Floral Design. 

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker was our photographer – a great photographer and a genuinely nice man!

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Phil is a big metal music fan and we both love festivals so we wanted to inject some of our personality and fun to the day. Everyone was in the bar area and when the ballroom was opened for the evening reception, staff handed out lanyards similar to those at a festival complete with map and set list. In the ballroom was a gazebo Photo Booth, a signing tent with artificial grass, vinyls to sign along with guest book, there was a tattoo inspired sweet table made by Phil’s parents, a guitar case displayed for cards and gifts and tents dotted around for people to go in, there was also a chill out area called the rescue room with lanterns where the evening buffet was served.

Unexpectedly to the crowd a band called Our Friends Electric then took to the stage. The band had Phil’s friends in it who have gigged a few times together and he was on lead guitar. They played cover tracks old and new and everyone was dancing and having a good time. By this time sunglasses were everywhere and we threw glow sticks into the crowd so it had a real festival feel. This was really special as Phil’s grandparents had never seen him play live before so was a really nice moment.

I’d been hearing Phil practice for weeks in the spare room and knew most of the songs but it was a lovely surprise when he got down from the stage to dance with me as the band played “My Girl”, me in my dress and Phil in his black flag t shirt!

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

I always said I wanted my mum to make my wedding cake. As I’ve grown up I’ve really enjoyed baking cupcakes, so me and my Mum made the cake two days before the wedding.  It sounds stressful but it was a really nice to take some time out doing something we both enjoy together.

The cake was six tiers of cream topped cupcakes with brushed pearls and glitter on top with a fruit cake top tier made by my mum. We wanted something simple but elegant.

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

I think the whole evening reception was one big special touch for us, because we and our parents had made everything it felt extra special. We were excited that our family and friends had no idea about it and that the response to it was overwhelming,everyone loved it.

During the day the small touches made all the difference like the music sheet confetti cones we gave out, rose petals on the aisle, having our favourite film scores playing at the wedding breakfast, walking down the aisle to the instrumental ‘Inhale’ by Killswitch Engage: one of Phil’s favourite bands.

Other highlights include confetti cannons going off as we danced with our friends for the second dance and my brother’s poem reading during the ceremony. 

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

The most random but also fun part of the day was when myself and the bridesmaids left the wedding for about 20 minutes in the evening for a cheeky shot. I’d joked to my friend before that it would be funny to leave the wedding and nip up busy Division Street to have a cheeky drink at The Frog & Parrot one of our go to places. Well she made this happen! Very random and very funny as we sat in a booth for a quick one with people gazing with puzzled faces and then ran back to the City Hall without too many people noticing. That’s why I love my friends!

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

Samuel Docker Photography

The honeymoon was a complete surprise to me.  On the morning of the wedding Phil had delivered a rucksack with a letter explaining the bag contained clues of our honeymoon destination. This included flip flops, sun cream, a Mickey Mouse top, a french baguette plus much more.

During the speeches Phil had four of my bridesmaids stand up and announce where we were going. We went to London, Paris and Disneyland and then onto Ibiza. It was pretty jam packed but the perfect honeymoon for us.

Samuel Docker Photography

Someone told me to take a few moments to yourself throughout the day at different times just to take in what’s happening. I definitely did this, just a pause here and there and it really helps you absorb it all and gives you an extra smile. But my biggest tip for other Brides Up North is to enjoy it, we obviously both felt nervous before the big day but that was mainly because of the evening plans not the actual marriage. On the morning of the day all my tummy flutters disappeared and I just couldn’t stop smiling all day

Samuel Docker Photography

Congratulations Clare & Philip!

Fancy seeing your own Real Wedding on these pretty pages? Here’s how.

.

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Samuel Docker

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Mr & Mrs Perfect. A Real Wedding In Manchester – Gemma & Nigel

February 4th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Stella Photography

Yes, that really is today’s bride and groom’s married name – Mr & Mrs Perfect.  Don’t you love it.  No pressure or anything..!  Anyway, it turns out that their gorgeous Real Wedding in Manchester was pretty much that – a chic and simple and prettily perfect winter city wedding. 

With images by Stella Photography.

Stella Photography

Gemma says:  Nigel asked me to marry him on 1st December 2012, on Llanmadoc beach in Wales, on a weekend away. It was a beautiful isolated beach on a lovely crisp winter’s day.

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

We were married on 23rd November 2013.  We had the ceremony at Manchester Town Hall, and the reception at The Place Apartment Hotel, a converted cotton warehouse in central Manchester. 

Stella Photography

We wanted everything to be indoors, firstly because it is Manchester, so it was more than likely to rain, and secondly because of the time of year. We had looked at country locations, but decided that as we had so many guests coming not only from over this country but also from abroad, the city centre would be best for travel from the airport, train or the motorway. Also, we live very close to the city centre, so going in to see our wedding coordinator at the venue, and meeting local suppliers was so much easier than if we had picked somewhere far away.  Manchester Town Hall is a stunning old building, with high stained glass windows so we felt it added to the occasion. The Place is beautifully restored, maintaining many original features such as red brick walls and steel columns. 

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Our theme was simplicity.  The venue for the reception made it seem urban chic and we also teamed this with a vintage feel with the flower displays – very natural, in small glass bottles and jars – and hand-tied favours with luggage tag labels.

The wedding was mainly white and ivory, however my husband had decided that he wanted to wear his kilt, in the family tradition, so I picked a dark forest green for the bridesmaids to match this. 

Stella Photography#

My dress was from The Staite Rooms in Huddersfield. It was a Maggie Sottero gown (Geneva), fitted to the waist and slightly over the hips, and had a long train. The top layer was a delicate lace with floral adornments, and a a band in light mocha under the bust, which made it look quite different to any I had seen before. I loved my long train!  The dress was strapless which I didn’t think I would like when trying on dresses, but it fit beautifully with a lace-up back.

My bridesmaids wore full length forest green chiffon dresses from Fairytale Occasions in Bury. The groomsmen wore kilts in a similar style to my husband, our fathers wore black suits to match the kilt jackets. These were all hired from Slaters.

I had a fantastic hair & makeup artist come to make up myself, my bridesmaids, my mother and mother-in-law at the hotel, Jodie Smith, also based in Manchester.

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

Stella Photography

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White On White. A Winter Woodland Styled Wedding Inspiration Shoot In Cheshire

December 1st, 2013 | Julia Braime

Amanda Balmain

Can you believe its Advent already?  I’ve so much gorgeous Real Wedding content to share with you between now and when that New Year’s ball drops that I thought I’d sneak in a pretty Sunday post to welcome the season.

If you’re planning a winter wedding – or just thinking about decorating your home for the holidays – there’s nothing chicer than layering white on white, as this lovely little decor and details inspiration shoot from North West photographer Amanda Balmain and floral designer Sharon Saberi at Aphrodite Flowers shows.  Be inspired to create something lovely this Christmas. 

Amanda Balmain

Amanda says:  Sharon and I actually put together this simple shoot earlier this year, but the ideas would work equally well for a beautiful winter wedding breakfast.  We would both love to work on an outdoor wedding and we thought this gorgeous tree in the pretty woodland setting was just perfect. We had such fun decorating the tree and it looked so pretty that we both thought we would like to get married again right there (although we’d have to wrap up warm)!  On the day the light was just perfect to give a warm glow to our all white winter floral colour palette. 

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

Amanda Balmain

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

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Sweethearts. Berketex Bride For A Chic Real Wedding At The Mansion – Helen & David

October 18th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

And would you look at that, it’s Friday!  Three cheers and let’s celebrate by feasting our eyes on this beautiful Real Wedding at one of my very favourite wedding venues – The Mansion, Leeds.  I’ve just celebrated my third wedding anniversary, but if we had to do it all again, this venue would be seriously near the top of my list.  Helen and David’s celebration is just lovely – simple, chic and perfectly executed.  Of course, it helps that they’re blooming gorgeous too. 

Enjoy.

With images by Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Helen says:  We got engaged in Summer 2011 in Las Vegas in an amazing restaurant overlooking the Bellagio fountains.  It was a complete surprise.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

When we got married we had been together for 15 years as we got together at High School.  We finally said “I do” on Friday 16th August 2013 at The Mansion, Roundhay Park, Leeds. 

We chose the venue for the beautiful interiors, the stunning views of the park and because we both grew up nearby. From the first time we went inside The Mansion we knew we wanted to get married there.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

My dress was from Berketex Bride in Leeds. It was an ivory strapless gown with lots of subtle detailing and a slight hint of pink in the lace. It needed no alterations and fit perfectly on the day.

I wore customised converse on my feet. They had my married name on and were covered in crystals. 

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

My seven year old nieces wore ivory dresses from Debenhams with floral appliqué. Our one adult bridesmaid (my wing woman) wore a floral print dress from Phase Eight.  The groomsmen wore suits from Yorkshire Menswear and matching socks from Paul Smith.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

We had Jill Ryder to sing and play guitar at the ceremony, drinks reception and wedding meal. She really made the day with her fantastic acoustic music. We saw her play at a friend’s wedding and knew we had to have her on our special day.

In the evening we had a brilliant band called Vibetown who got everyone dancing.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

My bouquet was made from white hydrangeas with green leaves. Our bridesmaid Emma had a matching bouquet. We then had table flowers to match in glass cube vases. I have always loved white flowers and we wanted a clean, simple yet elegant look.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Our photographer was Martin from Dorchester Ledbetter Photography. We were so impressed with the quality of the photos and had a hard time choosing pictures for our album. Martin had such a good knowledge of our venue and suggested all the best places to get a good shot. He even stayed for the evening reception and we got some great pictures on the dance floor!

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Our on the day stationery was by Pink Sherbet.  We chose butterfly place cards, which sat on the glasses and frosted candle holders lit the room in the evening.

We hired an ivory post box with our names on it for guests to place their cards in.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

We chose a blush pink and ivory three tier cake with fondant flowers from Bored to Tiers in Morley.  The bottom and middle tiers were vanilla sponge and then middle tier was red velvet with white chocolate ganache.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

I have lots of amazing memories from the day – walking into the room and seeing everyone’s smiling faces; walking up the aisle as a married couple then onto the terrace for some pink fizz; the speeches, which were brilliant and funny and hen everyone hit the dance floor to a Michael Jackson medley by our amazing band, Vibetown.

We just loved sharing such a perfect day with our family and friends. Everyone kept saying what a brilliant day it was.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

For our honeymoon we went to Koh Phangan and Koh Samui in Thailand then onto Singapore.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to relax and enjoy the day. Get the main things booked as early as possible (venue, photographer, registrar) as these get booked up then take your time with all the other aspects. Book people that you trust and then you can relax and let them do their job on the day. We really trusted our venue team and photographer and felt able to enjoy every moment.

Don’t feel you have to have a colour theme, our approach was ‘if we like it then we will have it’. Enjoy the planning process, ours was exciting not stressful.

Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

Congratulations Helen & David!

Contact me to share your own Real Wedding here on Brides Up North.  Here’s how to do it.

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Dorchester Ledbetter Photography

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White Out. A Grecian Inspired Luxury Styled Wedding Shoot At Scampston Hall

September 23rd, 2013 | Julia Braime

Todd & Moore Photography at Scampston Hall

I’ve something lovely to round off another pretty Monday on these pages, with this stunning styled shoot sent to me by Stephanie of SB events and showing off the work of a very talented collective of Yorkshire wedding suppliers.  Girls, if you want your wedding day style to be whiter than white, look no further. 

With images by Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

Stephanie says:  Whilst at a site-visit at Scampston Hall, near Malton, I was blown away by the Palladian Bridge in the grounds. Louise Legard (Wedding co-ordinator and sister of the owners at Scampston) mentioned that they were in the process of acquiring a wedding licence so that couples could get married on the bridge. This gave me the perfect opportunity to showcase the bridge on a styled shoot with local suppliers.

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

I have always had a love for ancient Greece and the Palladian bridge had the perfect backdrop. The Grecian wedding theme is as vintage as you can get. The colours used were ivory, gold and green and the colours complemented the theme and can be seen throughout from the cake to the flowers.

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

I called on friends and wonderful photographers Jill Moore and Julia Todd from Todd & Moore Photography, whose fine art and eclectic style were the perfect choice.

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

I wanted the shoot to have a natural yet glamorous feel. The first look, was a relaxed ceremonial style where the bride had her hair down with a floral crown. The second style was more formal which included our model’s hair in classic Grecian braids and really showed off Enzoani’s Harmony dress.

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

Flowers were designed by Flowers By Joanna Keely. The bridal bouquet included soft avalanche roses, spray roses, poppies, eucalyptus and eryngium.

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

The beautiful wedding gowns are from The Harrogate Wedding Lounge. The two dresses showcased in the shoot were Mia Mia’s Summer and Enzoani’s Harmony.

Todd & Moore Photography

Props were supplied by venue decor stylists Catching Your Dreams. Decorations included gorgeous white candelabras, ivy garlands, birdcages and urns.

Todd & Moore Photography

Todd & Moore Photography

The collaboration was a huge success and everybody involved had a fantastic time and the images captured the glamorous Grecian theme beautifully. The Palladian Bridge will have a wedding licence from January 2014 and the images will be featured in their wedding brochure.

Todd & Moore Photography

Little Black Book

Design & Co-ordination: SB events

Venue: Scampston Hall

Photography: Todd & Moore Photography

Flowers: Flowers by Joanna Keely

Hair & make-up: Beauty Call

Bridal Wear: The Harrogate Wedding Lounge

Grooms Wear: Humphrey & Tilly

Venue Decor: Catching Your Dreams

Cake: Babycakes York

Ceremony Chairs: YF Events

Rings: Iain Henderson Designs

Models: Celia Legard & Mungo Fawcett

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Todd & Moore Photography

This is not a sponsored post

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

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