There are so many gorgeous elements to this morning’s real wedding that make our knees go weak – in particular the bride’s striking dress, which we adore!
Other highlights for us include the super sweet cake table, the men’s ditzy bow ties, the elegant vintage décor and that pretty pink peony in Emma’s hair. Bloomin’ lovely!
Ladies, this is one wedding you will want to take note of!
With images by Helen Russell Photography.
emma says: We got engaged at Northwood Nuclear Naval Base in London on 7th December 2013. We had been invited to the Royal Naval Christmas/winter ball by my brother-in-law. Kris had said after he proposed that he was supposed to do it on Christmas Day, however he decided to do it early, but not while I was in my ball gown or while we were in the extravagant ball. Instead he went down on one knee afterwards while I was in my pyjamas!
Our wedding day was the 13th June 2015. We wanted a June wedding as we love peonies and the florist advised this was the best time for them.
The ceremony was at St Mary the Virgin Church in Seaham, followed by a reception at Lumley Castle. I have always thought that the church is beautiful on the inside and out, the coastal setting is beautiful and the church itself is one of the oldest in England. For the reception we had looked at a number of venues but Lumley Castle stood out by far as it wasn’t like any ‘usual’ hall or manor house. I also joked that I could have my own castle and be a princess for the day.
I’d describe our chosen theme was vintage, shabby chic/old fashioned. My mother and I made a lot of stuff and used a lot of old jewellery. We bought whatever caught our attention in vintage and charity shops.
I didn’t want a bold colour scheme. I love little ditzy prints and florals in pastels and neutral shades and so used pastels, pinks and champagne. We didn’t want the colour scheme to be too rigid though and so did add in other colours here and there, such as the men wearing multi-coloured bow ties.
My dress was calf-length fitted lace, full sleeve with a full-length bustle train. It was from House of Mooshki. I chose it because I always wanted something very different. I remember seeing a lot of wedding pictures on Facebook etc. and just thinking how similar everyone looked, nothing stood out. To complement my dress, I carried a fabric and brooch bouquet made by Aylsa Hopps at Love is Vintage.
My bridesmaids had their dresses custom made by Sense of Style in Darlington.
Our transport on the day of the wedding was a 1950s Jaguar which we hired from Merlin Wedding Cars.
We chose Helen Russel to capture our wedding and I would definitely recommend her to others. Her reputation is what made us follow her on social media to check out her work and we knew straight away we wanted Helen for our big day. We never actually looked at any other wedding photographers, and after the venue, Helen was the first booking that we made. Her style fitted our personalities perfectly. She made the whole process very easy and for me being quite shy, she made what I thought that I would dread quite easy to do.
Our videographer was Lee Scullion, who was very popular with our guests. His finished work is brilliant and he’s such a fantastic person to around when you are feeling nervous.
The flowers used to decorate the wedding reception were provided by Lorna Smithson at Design Studio in Chester le Street. My mother made the rest of the decorations that were on the tables, the bar, the adjoining room, the mantelpieces and also the outdoor courtyard and trees.
As favours we gave the male guests miniatures with a sleeve with our names and date on which said ‘drink me, this one is on us’. The ladies had a lace decorated shortbread in a pouch tied with ribbon and placed inside their own cup and saucer. They were tied with a tag stating the definition of love, again with our names and date. My mother made and decorated the biscuits and bought the cups and saucers over a period of time in various vintage shops.
We opted for a cake table rather than a wedding cake on its own. We had tall martini glasses filled with large meringues with fruit and cream, mini cakes, cake pops, cupcakes and macaroons. This way we were able to have lots of flavours, including rose, pistachio, chocolate orange, white chocolate, lemon and vanilla. These were decorated with sugar petals and roses. The main cake was a very pale pink three-tier creation. The only decoration was a peony sugar flower and pearl cluster on the top. It was passionfruit flavour. The cakes were made by Bernadette at Dreamworld Cakes in Newcastle.
Our wedding day breakfast was a three-course meal of soup for starters, chicken with vegetables for main and sticky toffee pudding for dessert. In the evening we had a mixed buffet.
To provide entertainment, we hired a band called The Playlist from Newcastle. We cannot recommend them to others enough, they are such a lovely set of men. They set up very quietly with minimal fuss and disruption. Once they started practically the whole room got up and were still going when Kris and I decided to call it a night. It had been a very long day for us but the band kept everyone else going. We also had a caricaturist, I wasn’t too sure it would go, but everyone loved it!
Looking back I couldn’t pick one part of the day as my favourite – I loved it all!
Following the wedding we ventured to Bowness on Windermere for our week’s honeymoon. We didn’t want to be too far away from our daughter as she was only ten-months-old at the time. We stayed at The Old England MacDonald Hotel & Spa. Our room was right on the lake and had views that were probably prettier than those abroad. We are planning to venture a little further around our anniversary next year and travel to a few different places in Italy.
My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to 100% enjoy it and take it all in, don’t worry about anything else! The day goes by so fast and all you will want to do is relive it!