November 9th, 2016 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s real wedding is just perfect for the snow flurries that we are seeing up and down the country today. We hope you are all safe and cosy with a steaming cup of something chocolately on your desk or on your knee!
Luisa and Peter pulled off the impressive feat of a Christmas wedding without a can of snow spray or a gilded pine cone in sight. Instead, their big day at Colshaw Hall in Cheshire, was led by an organic woodland theme, full of warm earthy tones and plenty of grown-up black-tie glamour.
The food and the playlist were particular focal points for this Manchester music-loving pair, and the following day saw the festivities extended with an aprés-ski extravaganza. So get comfortable, perhaps with a glass of Malbec or a mulled wine – go on, Luisa would definitely approve!
With images by Jonny Draper Photography
luisa says: Peter and I got engaged in Barbados. One night we went down for dinner and, instead of heading for our usual table in the restaurant, we were led down a path lined with candles that took us to a private beach and a table for two. When we sat down and opened the menus, I saw all of my favourite foods and champagne. Then a steel band appeared playing Elvis Presley’s I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You. When I looked around, Peter was down on one knee; it was a truly magical moment. He made a beautiful speech and, of course, I said yes. We spent the rest of the week celebrating and relaxing; it was just so perfect!
We chose to get married on 19th December 2015 because it was the closest Saturday to the Winter Solstice – a date important to me and my mum. We wanted a winter wedding as we felt that there were lots more options to explore in terms of the decorations and the vibe that we could create.
For the venue, we chose Colshaw Hall in Cheshire. We wanted to make sure that the event was totally private and this was the huge bonus of Colshaw: the venue and all of its grounds are hired exclusively so we wouldn’t be sharing our special day with anyone else. Secondly, as Peter’s family are based in Suffolk, we wanted to make sure that there was accommodation onsite to ensure that the wedding weekend was as easy as possible for those travelling. Having looked at quite a few venues in the area, Colshaw’s accommodation was, we felt, the most beautiful. Each room has its own stunning theme and beautiful view over the grounds. Colshaw’s Peel Suite also offered a beautiful blank canvas; no wedding looks the same there. We had hired the main house for the drinks and canapés straight after the service and this offered a unique, cosy, Christmas drinks party atmosphere.
Theme-wise, we wanted to create a natural and organic winter forest. Peter and I love walking our dog Digby up on the Edge and we wanted to recreate that same earthy, woodland environment. I wanted my wedding to be just that little bit ‘out there’, and having the trees as the centrepiece certainly achieved that goal. As our wedding was the weekend before Christmas, I think people expected us to go down the more conventional festive route and it was truly lovely seeing their reactions to the chapel and the main room. We’d focused on lots of earthy tones, such as dark greens and ambers, making sure that everything was lit by candles to create warmth.
I had chosen quite a traditional and simple gown designed by Stewart Parvin with the lace detail as a nod to my Italian heritage. My dress was bought and styled by the incredible ladies at LOVE Bridal in Cheshire. They helped accessorise my gown with a Stewart Parvin veil, lace jacket and honey-toned belt which contemporised it perfectly. My shoes were Hangisis by Manolo Blahnik; I just loved their quirkiness. In the evening, I removed the lace jacket and added a thin sparkly belt to liven it up for the dancing. I visited several bridal stores and LOVE Bridal’s service surpassed all the London boutiques. From the beautiful little cakes they serve to the ‘grand reveal’, the wonderful Emma and Clare have it covered.
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October 4th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
Have we mentioned that we love all things Christmas? So with less than 12 weeks to go until Santa visits us once again we thought it was high time for another festive themed big day on the blog.
Taking place in the charming city of York, we adore how Alex and Stacey’s stylish wedding gives subtle nods to the season without a single piece of tinsel in sight!
We’re also big fans of the atmospheric venue and choice of simple white blooms and cake. The star of the show for us though just has to be Stacey’s gorgeous bespoke, lace detailed dress, complete with floor-length veil and glamorous red lips. Pure perfection!
With images by Photography34.
stacey says: We got engaged on the beach at Alnmouth, in Northumberland. We’d been staying in a cottage nearby and had gone out for a walk when Alex asked the question. It was 5th November in 2014, and a really crisp cold day with blue skies and very few people around.
We set our wedding date for 28th November 2015, as we liked the idea of getting married in the same month that we got engaged.
Our chosen venue was Merchant Taylors Hall, in York. We live in York and wanted somewhere central that our friends and family could easily travel to. We looked around several venues and loved this one. The beamed ceilings and open fire seemed to be perfect for a winter wedding. The layout of the hall was also great for the number of guests we wanted and allowed us to have both the ceremony and reception all in the same place.
We initially didn’t really have a theme to the wedding but then we discovered that the week we were marrying would be when the Christmas tree would be put up in the Merchant Taylors Hall. We therefore decided to with a bit of a festive feel, adding lights in the hall and having Christmas crackers as favours.
We didn’t set out to have any specific colour scheme either, at first kept it simple with everything in white. However, we then decided on a deep blue/purple colour for the bridesmaid dresses and so incorporated that hue into the wedding and matched the ties, invitations and table names.
September 20th, 2016 | Julia Braime
Today on the blog we have some beautiful inspiration for those of you planning winter weddings as we share the details of Emma and Mark’s big day.
Following an Ikea proposal (don’t worry, he made up for it), Emma and Mark set about planning an atmospheric November wedding, complete with lots of soft candlelight and sparkling décor.
Going all out on the opportunity to wear a big dress, bride Emma chose a stunning Ian Stuart gown with accents of shimmering silver to match both the colour scheme and season. Now that’s what we call a dress with the wow-factor!
With images by Jonny Draper Photography.
emma says: We got engaged in Ikea over meatballs! Honestly! But then we had my engagement ring specially made and Mark surprised me with a trip to London to see the Lion King (I love Disney). He got us box seats and had champagne and chocolates put in the box. It was amazing!
As we loved the idea of a Christmas or winter wedding we set the date for 28th November.
Our chosen venue was Armathwaite Hall in Keswick. We both love the Lake District and when we went to look at venues Armathwaite felt really personal. I like modern venues and Mark likes old fashioned and Armathwaite had the perfect blend of both.
To fit the time of year we went for a sparkly wedding theme (with a hint of Disney!) As we knew it would be dark outside we thought lots of sparkles and candles would look great.
When it came to the colour scheme we knew that we didn’t want everyone in the same colour as we had an unconventional bridal party in that the maid of honour was male and we had female groomsmen. I also wanted each of the bridesmaids to have dresses that suited them, rather than sticking to a certain theme. In the end we went for pale pastel colours accented with a silver shimmer.
I chose to wear an Ian Stuart dress from Ava Rose Hamilton. I instantly fell in love with it. I’d tried on about seven or eight dresses beforehand but none of them made me excited, or felt quite so special. I knew I wanted a big dress – the sort that you can only ever wear on your wedding day – but also wanted something that really suited me. I loved the silver woven into the lace of the dress and that it had a huge skirt but fitted silk body. I never thought I would get a strapless dress but the minute I tried it on I knew it was right.
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March 31st, 2016 | Julia Braime
We’re spoiling those of you planning a festive wedding with another Christmas celebration – this time the stunning big day of Jonathan and Louise, which took place in Liverpool.
Deciding the festive season would be the perfect time to tie the knot with family and friends being in high spirits, Jonathan and Louise planned a stunning wedding around a cranberry red and tweed theme for a very classy day of romance.
We love the sensational seasonal blooms, elegant wedding transport and all the twinkling fairy lights!
With images by Rachel Victoria Photography.
louise says: We got engaged in Italy in a little town called Geta. We had been out for a meal and lovely wine. Jonathan suggested we went for a walk around the hotel grounds and then said “I have something to ask you…” I turned round and he had gotten down on one knee and produced a ring in a box and asked me “will you marry me”. Of course I said yes!
We decided to set the date for 23rd of December, as we wanted a festive wedding. This day seemed a perfect choice as we knew that everyone would be excited and in the festive spirit in the lead up to Christmas.
Our ceremony was at Saint Peter’s Church in Woolton, Liverpool, as this has been Jonathan’s parish and church since he was a young boy. It is a beautiful church and Kip (the rector) and Graham are the most helpful and loveliest of people. My uncle gave me away as my father sadly passed away when I was young. We felt very lucky to have been married at this monumental and timelessly beautiful church. Our reception venue was The Racquet Club in Liverpool.
We chose to a theme of rustic Christmas. It fitted perfectly with the venue and the time of year as everyone was in the festive spirit already! Our colour scheme was cranberry red and tweed. We chose this again to fit the time of year and a Christmas wedding theme with a rustic twist.
March 29th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
With all the chocolate we’ve consumed over the weekend we’re all Easter-ed out and so are turning our thoughts to other bank holiday celebrations today, as we relive the wonderful Christmas wedding of Jo and David.
Following a festive engagement, today’s bride and groom decided December would be the perfect month in which to take their vows too. As a nod to the season, their romantic big day featured twinkling fairy lights, glittering baubles and shiny accessories, resulting in some super sparkly celebrations.
In case you’ve not heard, we will be hosting one of our fabulous Luxury Wedding Exhibitions at The Bowdon Rooms on Sunday 17th April, giving you the opportunity to see the fabulous venue for yourselves.
With images by Mick Cookson Photography.
jo says: David proposed on Christmas morning 2014, it was a complete surprise. I had to follow clues around the house which led to different presents (including a jigsaw of the world and a Manchester City gnome!) and further clues until I found my engagement ring under the tree.
Our wedding was on 27th December 2015. It was 12 months following our engagement and we wanted a Christmas/winter wedding, so the date was perfect!
We were married at St Vincent’s RC Church in Altrincham. The wedding breakfast and reception was then held at The Bowdon Rooms. It was the only venue we looked at, and loved how it was one big room with a stage for the band. Also, the room could be decorated to suit whatever style we wanted.
When it came to the theme we were both very easy going – we just wanted a Christmas wedding and for the venue to be decorated for that time of year. To fit the season we chose a décor colour scheme of red and gold.
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March 11th, 2016 | Julia Braime
We may have mentioned just one or two times before that here at Brides Up North HQ, we absolutely LOVE Christmas. It will therefore come as no surprise that we are big fans of festive weddings – I mean, why not hold you big day at a time of year when people are already in high spirits and give friends and family yet another reason to raise a glass of champers?
Today’s real wedding couple did just that, hosting their wedding at the lovely Eaves Hall on the 21st December. To get their celebrations off to a fabulous start, the bride, groom and their guests enjoyed a pre-Christmas party, complete with carol singing (how perfect?), before the main event got underway.
We love the simple midnight blue and ivory colour scheme with red berry pops, as well as the elegant floral and table displays of thistles, roses and pine cones.
So join us as we rewind the clock to the most wonderful time of the year…
With images by Stella Photography.
anna says: We got engaged at Valley Gardens in Harrogate. The first weekend that we met, we went for a walk through the park and woods in there and then Dan took me back there for a walk one Saturday morning and proposed. It was very romantic! I was in complete shock as I really wasn’t expecting it at all. He had also planned a surprise stay at The Feversham Arms in Helmsley, where we celebrated with champagne in the spa!
We set the date for 21st December. We wanted to get married around Christmas time and getting married just before Christmas seemed like the perfect way to start off the celebrations and festivities.
Our chosen venue was Eaves Hall. It’s gorgeous and was the perfect location for our big Christmas wedding party. We hired out the whole venue for two days (day before and day of the wedding) and all the family were able to stay in the same place so it felt like our ‘home’. The night before the wedding we had a meal and had organised for a pianist to come and play carols and Christmas songs so we could have a ‘sing song’ around the grand piano. This was amazing and really got everyone in the mood for Christmas and to party!
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