December 15th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
Though we didn’t need anymore reason to get the mulled wine heating on the hob and the Baileys chilling in the fridge, Friday has arrived signaling the ok for a little indulgence. As such we’re treating your eyes to this true beauty of a real wedding, which took place in the beautiful city of York.
Lisa and Steve chose the stunning Grays Court, for their big day celebrations – a stunning, historic building which dates back to the 11th century. As luck would have it, the sun shone brightly on their wedding day and they unexpectedly ended up saying their vows in the venue’s garden, surrounded by candelabras, plinths, candles and flowers – a dreamy outdoors ceremony if ever we saw one! What we love most about the venue though, is that it looks like a secret hideaway – you’d be forgiven for thinking you were in the midst of a serene countryside setting as opposed to the heart of a city.
From the inspired grey colour scheme and Lindt chocolate favours, to the string quartet and elegant red velvet cake – there are lots of wonderful details to pore over. Our highlight though has to be the photos captured after dark, with fairy lights and dark shadows at play for some truly romantic shots!
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor, Richard Perry Photography.
lisa says: We got engaged on my birthday, 10th April 2016. I love history and one of my favourite places is Hever Castle in Kent; Anne Boleyn’s childhood home. Steve surprised me with a trip to Hever. We stayed at the castle and while in the gardens, he proposed on one knee with a ring! He arranged for champagne on ice in our room for our return. It was perfect.
Our wedding date was 14th October, and we chose Grays Court in York as our venue. We love York and go whenever we can. I love Grays Court because it dates back to the 11th century, it’s beautiful with the gardens backing onto York wall and boasts views of the Minster. We’ve stayed there a few times and I knew that’s where I wanted to get married.
Our colour scheme was grey which matched the venue, as well as being my favourite colour. I didn’t have a theme in mind but realised along the way I’d chosen grey for quite a lot of things!
I chose an Ian Stuart gown. I loved his style straight away and found a bridal shop which stocked his gowns. The dress is called Angelica. It originally had a high neck and was sleeveless with a low back, but Ian Stuart made the dress strapless at my request.
Steve wore a light grey suit from Spencer’s in Liverpool. Meanwhile, our bridesmaids wore Dessy and the colour choice was stormy.
I didn’t need transport on the wedding day as I stayed at the venue the night before. Steve stayed at The Grand and walked through York with his friends to Grays.
December 14th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s couple, Lauren and Andrew, wanted timeless over trendy for their special day, and so tails, armfuls of roses and a traditional hearty Yorkshire menu were the order of the day.
Light-up letters, live music and a talented DJ ensured their reception went with a bang, as well as an alternative guest book in the form of some fun photobooth action.
Of all the gorgeous details you’ll see below, however, there’s one that really stands out: Lauren’s gown. In our humble opinion, her stunning Ronald Joyce creation steals the show – the lace overlay, sequin detailing and that beaded string back is Choirs-Of-Angels-Singing-Halleluiah levels of stunningness – just take a look for yourselves…
With photography by Brides Up North Sponsor, Bethany Clarke Photography.
lauren says: We got engaged on Christmas Eve 2015, and chose Saturday 2nd September 2017 as our wedding date. We liked the fact that we would get the end of summer/early autumn colours outside but also hoped for a warm, sunny day (which we got!) It was also important to give my sister and husband enough time to fly in from New Zealand for the wedding.
We were married at the Immaculate Conception Church in Sicklinghall. It’s a catholic church which was important to Andrew, but had the attractive setting that I’d always imagined getting married in.
The reception was at The Bridge Hotel & Spa Wetherby. It was the first place we looked round after researching some places that took our fancy. It was an instant hit and nothing we saw afterwards compared to the overall package they were offering. It had a spacious function room and lovely grounds but still had a ‘country inn’ feel to the bar and restaurant, which we loved.
Colour-wise, we went for coral. We felt it matched with the time of year and the coloured roses we wanted for the bouquets.
Andrew wore a silk slate grey suit with tails and a white waistcoat from Bridal Apparel, Leeds. We wanted a more traditional look compared to a normal suit and felt it was important for a once-in-a-lifetime day. He matched it with a coral cravat and handkerchief.
Our bridesmaids wore coral Morilee dresses from Platinum Brides, and the groomsmen wore the same as Andrew but with grey waistcoat.
September 27th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
Where to start with today’s beautiful real wedding? There’s a magnificent, grand venue, two dress changes for the bride, some fabulous floral and amazing entertainment!
All bride Kimberley’s childhood dreams can true when she and beau Simon stumbled upon Allerton Castle in North Yorkshire, which provided the perfect fairy tale backdrop to their fine celebrations.
It was also important to Kimberley that her Chinese roots and traditions were incorporated into the wedding, and so the day featured ‘door games’, a tea ceremony and a lion dance! Here to explain exactly what this consisted of is the beautiful bride herself. Take it away Kimberley…
With images by Brides Up North Sponsor York Place Studios.
kimberley says: We got engaged on 9th May 2015. My girlfriends took me out for the afternoon to celebrate my birthday which was a few days earlier. One of them feigned sick and we were close to my place so they asked if we could go there to lie down for a bit. As soon as I opened the door I could tell something was up because it was super tidy and there were tea lights everywhere. I walked into the living room and Simon took my hand and sat me down then asked me to watch a video. It turned out to be a video that he had put together of me, telling our story from the beginning up to our engagement. The first night we met, instead of talking to me he took loads of pictures of me. Since then it’s been a running joke that he’s my personal photographer which is why he put the video of me together, basically me doing all kinds of silly things and it was his way of showing how I looked in his eyes. Towards the end of the video, he added in clips from rom-coms with cheesy lines and ending with Forrest Gump where Forrest proposes to Jenny. Then Simon proposed to me and I noticed that the girls had been filming in the background the whole time!
Simon then said he had another surprise and led us out of the flat. We went to a pub and as we walked in I saw our friends and family there, some who travelled down to London from Harrogate and Manchester! Simon told me he’d also organised a surprise engagement party for that evening. We went to the Candlenight Club all dressed up, Great Gatsby style. It was a fantastic day and I had the best time!
Our wedding took place on 25th June 2016, at Allerton Castle, near Harrogate. Since I was a little girl, I’d always gone on about getting married in a castle. When we started looking for venues, we looked at places close to Harrogate so that Simon’s family could attend and found Allerton Castle. I loved the beautiful main hall and ballroom – it was the perfect setting for our wedding. I also loved the grand staircase and chandeliers; it meant that I hardly needed to decorate the venue because it was already so decadent and suited us perfectly, especially as I’m known for being over the top.
There wasn’t really a theme to the day as such, we just wanted to be able to incorporate both our cultures into the wedding.
The day started with the door games, which is a Chinese tradition where the groom and groomsmen come to the bride’s house (in our case a rented holiday property for the weekend) to pick up the bride. The boys are met by the bridesmaids who put them through a series of challenges to see if the groom is worthy of the bride. This tradition is a symbol of the love of the bride’s family and their unwillingness for their daughter to leave. The door games end with the bridesmaids bartering for an “entrance fee” of red envelopes. The amount of money inside the envelopes is also symbolic and will often be a combination of three, eight, nine because in Chinese, three sounds like life, eight sounds like wealth and nine denotes the idea of longevity and being together forever.
Once I’d been ‘picked up’, we travelled to Allerton Castle to get ready. I then got changed in the bridal suite, which is a beautiful room that I wish was my bedroom all the time!
We had the civil ceremony and then the blessing, which incorporated the spiritual element that we wanted as part of our day without having a church wedding. I then got changed again into my Chinese traditional dress, and my husband put on his Chinese gilet and got wrapped up in a nice big red bow!
We got to walk down the staircase again where the front of the hall had been set up with a bench for the tea ceremony. This is where we kneel in front of our elders in order of seniority, one (or a couple) at a time and offer them tea. Traditionally, after each elder takes a sip, they hand the couple lucky red envelopes, which usually contain money or jewellery. For Cantonese weddings, a common gift is a pair of gold bangles called ‘dragon and phoenix bangles’. For the bride; the dragon and the phoenix being regarded as the perfect couple of “Yang” and “Yin” in Feng Shui that represent love, harmony and marital bliss.
September 4th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
Today’s styled bridal shoot is sure to appeal to the outdoorsy brides out there, thanks to its fiery autumnal colour palette, captivating moorland backdrop and felled logs aplenty. There’s even a horse; the perfect four-legged wedding guest if ever we saw one!
Set in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, this spellbinding shoot was captured by the talented Jenny Madden and brings together a host of local suppliers and businesses. Going all-out with the country chic theme – the team peppered the shoot with pretty details, from pheasant feathers and a hunting horn to a bronze fox and even a hunting jacket (who knew this would make the ultimate fashion accessory to a wedding dress?).
The orange smoke bomb adds a dynamic burst of colour to the all-natural setting, beautifully offset against the bride’s flamboyantly rustic bouquet. The model’s berry lip, copper eyes and textured up-do complete the rural, seasonal vibe perfectly.
Tempted to incorporate the great outdoors in your special day? We think this rustic wedding styled shoot might just win you over…
jenny says:Styled shoots are just a great excuse to get creative, with fewer time constraints than an actual wedding day. I also get to work with some awesome suppliers across the industry, who love what they do – and do it brilliantly.
We called this shoot Lady of the Manor – a nod to country chic styling. The colour palette was very earthy, with oranges, reds, coppers and greens featuring heavily. All these tones came together in the floral pieces, supplied by Floral Dance, with the colour accents picked up in other elements of the styling too; coppers in the table display and eye make-up, the khaki green hunting jacket, the chestnut horse, red lips and an orange smoke bomb adding a bit of fun to the final few frames.
As with other styled shoots we’ve worked on, we wanted to keep the look both pretty and rustic and incorporate the beauty of the great outdoors as much as possible. We chanced upon a really nicely lit woodland area with a huge pile of felled logs. With a bit of persuasion, we were allowed in! We then moved on to a nearby country path and then on to the moors where we met Snip the horse from Langbar Livery for a few frames, before trying out the smoke bombs.
Rustic shades and texture were key to capturing the country feel. The bouquet and button holes incorporated coppers, browns, oranges, dark burgundies and a touch of cream – all colours that perfectly complimented the pheasant feathers, which were an integral part of the floral arrangements. The fiery colours of the kniphofia (red hot pokers), viburnum berry and rosa esplanade set against the continuous (burgundy foliage) added depth and drama. Dried weeds from the hedgerow added a rustic feel, while the cream astilbe and miscanthus softened the look slightly and added a touch of femininity.
August 30th, 2017 | Julia Braime
This morning on the blog, we’re delighted to be catching up with one of our fabulous Sponsor photographers, Yorkshire-based Jenny Maden.
A self-confessed “softie”, Jenny loves capturing every element of a big day; from the thought-out details and styling, to the true emotions and expressions of those involved.
Summing up her style as natural and relaxed, Jenny prides herself on making couples feel totally at ease so they barely even notice her capturing their day.
Here to tell us more about her passion for photography (and romance) is the lady herself…
When did you first start photographing weddings and what was it that attracted you to the industry?
jenny says: I’ve been photographing weddings on a full-time basis since 2014. I love photographing people and wedding days are so full of opportunities to capture expression and emotion.
How would you describe your style of photography?
My style is very relaxed. When I’m working with my couples, they are generally chatting and laughing throughout, either with me or with each other. So much so that many couples tell me that they almost forget I’m photographing them. As a result, I achieve images that capture ‘you’.
I also constantly watch the light, the image composition and the angle in which I’m shooting, to ensure that the final images are polished and flattering – as well as natural.
What is it that you love most about your job?
There are so many things I love about being a wedding photographer!
I love getting to know my couples before the big day; getting a feel for their personalities, how they like to spend their time, what they have planned for the big day etc. I’ve stayed in contact with many of my couples, long after their weddings, often meeting them again to photograph their growing families.
I just love weddings! The dress, the flowers, the jewellery, the shoes, the table décor, the cake, the food and drink, the venue, bunting, games on the lawn, musicians…you name it. Sometimes couples incorporate quirky and unique touches into their wedding day, which I’ve perhaps not photographed before, which is a real treat for me.
Lastly, and I think perhaps my upmost favourtite thing, about being a wedding photographer, is capturing the emotion of the day; happiness, laughter and love. The feelings between the bride and groom are so evident, but the love between them and their parents, siblings and friends, is so clear to see too. I get to witness this close-hand and document it. Being a hopeless softie with a passion for photographs, this is an absolute pleasure!
In your opinion what are the most important things for a couple to consider when deciding which photographer to book for their wedding?
I strongly suggest you review their portfolio of work, to ensure that their style of work is to your taste. I also think it’s useful to meet as it’s really important that you feel at ease with your chosen photographer.
What is the feedback like from your couples?
I’ve had some lovely feedback, which I hugely value. Instead of me paraphrasing, take a peek for yourselves here.
Do you have a favourite part of the wedding day to capture?
I genuinely love the whole day. The bridal prep, the ‘first look’, the ceremony itself, the speeches, the first dance, but I also really love those quiet moments when I take the bride and groom off for a few pictures away from the guests. It’s often the only part of the day that they are alone together, and it’s a really special time that I get to capture.
February 6th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
Today on the blog, we’re stepping back in time with Rachel and Harry as they tie the knot at the medieval Skipton Castle in Yorkshire.
After 10 years together – Rachel awoke from her slumber one day to find an engagement ring on her finger; the definition of a dream come true if ever we saw one!
Their wedding was just as dreamy, with wildflowers, pretty pastels, a classic Bentley and a gorgeous three-tiered cake, not to mention a subtle nod to all things art deco. Read on for all the exquisite details…
With images by Bethany Clarke
rachel says: We had been together for 10 years before we got engaged and always joked that there was no point in Harry proposing as he knew I would say yes, so we may as well skip the engagement and just get married. In the early hours of 31st August 2015 Harry popped the most beautiful sapphire and diamond ring on my finger while I was asleep! Obviously, it was a wonderful surprise to wake up to, and Harry had spent hours nervously waiting for me to be in a deep enough sleep to put the ring on.
We got married on 23rd July 2016. We knew that we wanted a summer wedding and the venue we wanted only had a few weekends left and this date worked the best for us.
We tied the knot at Skipton Castle. We are both really interested in history and love visiting heritage sites and museums. We had visited Skipton Castle together a few times and always had a lot of fun there so it was really exciting to find out that they actually hold weddings there too! Of course, I wanted the whole fairytale princess in a castle vibe too! We had visited a few other venues but Skipton Castle just felt so special to us, everyone that works there is so lovely and genuinely wanted us to have the best day; they really put us at ease and made our wedding super special.
We wanted to have a really casual and fun wedding. It was quite small and intimate, we didn’t have a seating plan or anything like that, we just wanted everyone to mingle and have a great time.
I wouldn’t say we had a particular theme but due to our own personal styles there was a bit of a vintage feel to the day – my dress was 1920s inspired, we had a classic Bentley and wild flowers everywhere. It’s hard not to get swept up when you’re getting married in a medieval castle!
We didn’t have a colour scheme; everything was quite neutral. We had a range of different colours in our flowers and these were the only real colours on the day, at the castle and later at our reception venue too. We matched the car and the cake to the bridesmaid’s pale grey dress as it was important to us that everything looked quite minimal.
I wore a Maggie Sottero dress from Abigail’s Bridal Boutique. Looking through bridal magazines and blogs I fell in love with Maggie Sottero’s designs and I discovered that Abigail’s Bridal Boutique is one of the few shops in Leeds that stock this brand. I tried on a handful of dresses but as soon as I put on ‘Ettia’ I knew that was the dress for me. It was everything I had ever dreamed of in a wedding dress and the lovely ladies at Abigail’s had to coax me out of it in the end as I didn’t want to take it off. I paired it with a cathedral length, Swarovski trimmed veil and an art deco headpiece – I felt like a princess.
We hired a classic S-type Bentley from Classic and Vintage Travel in Harrogate. The car was incredible and the driver was so wonderfully friendly and surprised us with a bottle of Champagne after the ceremony. He drove us out to a lovely area of greenery in Skipton and we drank some Champagne and enjoyed a few minutes to ourselves before driving to the reception. It was such a special moment and we were so grateful to the driver for suggesting it.
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