UK Wedding Blog

A Word From Our Winner, With Brides Up North & The Harrogate Wedding Lounge

23rd July 2012 | Julia Braime

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Back in January, I was thrilled to contact one wedding blog reader with some amazing news – her name had been picked at random from over 1,000 entrants on the blog and in person at the Brides Up North stand at wedding fairs across the region to win her dream wedding dress and accessories worth £1,500 with Brides Up North Featured Supplier, The Harrogate Wedding Lounge.

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Breaking the happy news to Kat, our bride to be, has to have been one of the highlights of my career as a to date.  As someone who spends a lot of time behind a computer screen it was amazing to reach out to one of my readers personally and deliver such a knockout message. 

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This afternoon, I am thrilled to welcome her to these swirly silver pages as she tells us what the prize meant to her and a little about her wedding plans.  Congratulations Kat!

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Kat says:  Neil and I have been a couple for almost 12 years now, we were friends for a while (having met at school) before we both finally realised that we were totally perfect for each other and made it official. We’ve been engaged for two years and to say his proposal came as a totally shock to me is a bit of an understatement. I’m obviously thrilled to be marrying my best friend and love of my life but, as we’d always agreed that we didn’t need to get married, it genuinely took a while for me to get my head around the concept, not to mention deciding how and when we wanted to do the deed. I didn’t really know where to start which is why I went online for inspiration and how I found Brides Up North.

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Kat with her fiancé Neil in a very different sort of outfit! (I hope!) 

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Neither of us are particularly conventional so a typically traditional wedding was never on the cards. We knew we wanted to do something that was ‘us’ but we didn’t know what it would be. After throwing ideas around for a few months we hit upon the idea of marrying on a cruise. We’ve always wanted to go to the Baltic and we found the perfect (Summer 2012) itinerary that will allow us to combine our dream holiday with our wedding.

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Winning a wedding dress from The Harrogate Wedding Lounge with Brides Up North is literally the most amazing thing to happen to me since Neil proposed! When I got the email from Julia I just sat staring at the laptop screen with my mouth open. After reading the email about SIX times, I rang my Mum to tell her the news and she was almost as excited as me. I’m the first to admit, I’m not a particularly girly girl – I own about five dresses which only see the light of day once in a blue moon. I do love glamming up, I just don’t do it very often so it’s not exactly my area of expertise. Which is why I’m SO happy to have won this prize. I had no idea where to start on my journey to find the perfect dress so this is a dream come true.

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I couldn’t have imagined a more enjoyable experience than I had choosing my dress. Hayley was amazing – down-to-earth, knowledgeable and super helpful. Anyone who thinks that wedding boutiques and their owners are full of airs and affectations will be instantly proven wrong with a visit to The Harrogate Wedding Lounge. The shop itself is just lovely – welcoming and weddingy without being overly romanticised.

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I literally didn’t have a clue what kind of dress I wanted though I knew it wouldn’t be a ‘princess dress’ simply because I’ve never aspired to look like one. That said, I tried to be open-minded when I browsed the racks of (stunning!) gowns – you never really know if a dress will suit you until you put it on. I tried on four dresses and the fourth was ‘the one’, a strapless Maggie Sottero with beautiful but subtle beading, a corset back and some great pleating on the front (both of which should help cover any over indulgence on cruise food in the week before the wedding day!).

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I was bowled over when Hayley said I could also choose some shoes as part of my prize. A free dress AND free shoes?! Days don’t get much better than that! Again I was almost spoilt for choice as The Harrogate Wedding Lounge stocks an impressive collection of Rainbow Club shoes. I chose the ‘Santi’ – the practical side of my brain said ‘Go for some flat pumps’ but the (considerably more vocal) shoe-loving side of my brain said “Get the gorgeous 3.5 inch heels and damn the consequences!” – so I did.

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I still can’t quite believe that I have a wedding dress, my wedding dress, let alone the fact that I was gifted the whole beautiful outfit.  I can’t begin say a big enough ‘Thank you!” to both Hayley and Julia for making it all possible. I just can’t wait to wear it now.

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Once again, huge congratulations from both Brides Up North and The Harrogate Wedding Lounge to Kat – we can’t wait to see some pictures of you in your chosen gown!

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  – Image © 2012 supplied by Kat Dray

The Harrogate Wedding Lounge is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

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