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thistles & roses. ronald joyce for a winter wedding in cheshire – annastacia & matt

16th August 2016 | Julia Braime

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A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (32)

Moving on from yesterday’s autumnal real wedding on the blog, we now have a stunning winter celebration to share with you, which features beautiful blooms and cosy seasonal décor.

Taking place at The Oaktree of Peover in Cheshire, Annastacia and Matt decided not to overcomplicate the day with a set theme and instead styled their wedding by taking inspiration from the wintery season with glowing lights, atmospheric candles and a sparkling colour scheme.

In particular, we love Annastacia’s perfect princess-style dress and the fabulous styling with reflects the time of the year perfectly!

With images by Jonny Draper Photography.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (50)

annastacia says: We got engaged in the skies above Cheshire. Following a phone call from Matt to make a picnic ready for an evening of flying, we drove to the airport. After all the safety checks and taking off, Matt faked an emergency and quickly passed me an emergency checklist all pilots follow. I began reading it out. The last two pages were edited and as well as all the usually fuel and engine checks came one I hadn’t seen before “Are rings engaged? Yes or No?” I asked Matt if they were and he said no, the checklist then read “If No, please turn over” the next page only had one more simple question: “Will you marry me? Yes or No?” After a quick photo, we turned round to fly back because I was so excited to land and tell our families and friends our news.

We set the date for 10th December 2015, as we wanted a winter wedding that wasn’t weather dependent. Secretly, I hoped for a sprinkling of snow.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (45)

We got married at The Oaktree of Peover in Cheshire. We chose this venue because we wanted a natural venue that was exclusive use. We also wanted our venue to be intimate for the small, informal relaxed wedding that we were planning.

We didn’t really have a particular wedding theme in mind but our colour scheme was white, golds and silver. We chose these colours because they were ‘wintery’ and complemented the coolness and freshness of the outdoors as well as the warmth and glow of the indoors.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (7)

My wedding dress was a Ronald Joyce design from Bespoke Brides in Mollington, Cheshire. I chose it because of the style; I loved the high neck and beading, in particular the detail on the back. I also loved the dress shape of the dress and the antique gold and silver colours, which glistened in the light.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (3)

Matt wore a dark grey/blue three-piece suit with a white shirt from Slaters along with an antique gold tie and pocket square from Next, and brown shoes from Burton Menswear. All the groomsmen wore the same as Matt while our little pageboy wore a grey two-piece suit and white shirt with brown shoes from Next.

My bridesmaids wore Lauren by Ralph Lauren dresses purchased from House of Fraser. The flowergirls’ Glitter Estella dresses were from Monsoon, which they wore with white tights and silver shoes from Next.

To take care of the bridal party’s hair I hired Katie Walsh and for makeup I hired Sophie-Lauren. Both work independently and travelled from my hometown of Prestatyn in North Wales. I chose to use Katie and Sophie as I had seen their work before and knew they would listen to our wishes.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (8)

On the day of the wedding we travelled to the venue in beautiful cars hired from Signature Wedding Cars. A Beauford called Carolina and a Chrysler 300 for the bridesmaids and mother-of-the-bride.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (17)

Jonny Draper captured our day. We would both recommend Jonny for his friendly personality, amazing photography and relaxed style. We met up early on a Saturday morning for hot chocolates and a chat and we instantly knew Jonny was the photographer for us. He is very professional but by the end of our wedding journey is now a good friend. We both hate having photos taken of ourselves but Jonny changed that we had lots of fun on our pre-wedding shoot and on the wedding day knew that with Jonny in charge, our photos would be amazing. We wanted natural wedding photographs of friends and family enjoying themselves with only a couple of group shots thrown in. Jonny kept everyone happy, the group shots to the bare minimum we could and allowed us to spend time with our family and friends which was exactly what we wanted. Jonny asked us how we wanted our day to run, and our answer was “for you to tell the story of our special day without us really knowing you are there”, which is exactly what he did!

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (18)

My gorgeous wedding bouquet included thistles, roses, hypericum berries, silver foliage and succulent in gold, created by Flowers on the Cobbles, based in Sandbach. The bridesmaids carried a smaller bouquet of the same flowers. I saw two different bouquets whilst collecting wedding magazines and asked the florist to customise a bouquet using the two images and a description of what our colour scheme and style was. The team at Flowers on the Cobbles were very knowledgeable and attentive with excellent attention to detail.

Our trust for decoration of the venue was handed to Emma Casson from Special Days, who knew exactly what we wanted from two words, “winter” and “wedding”. We used twigs decorated with glass orbs containing tea lights and hanging glass decorations as table centres and aisle toppers. We also had large lanterns with candles in down the aisle and around the venue. In the bar there were candles and floral centre pieces that mirrored the bouquets and winter theme. We wanted lots of candles because it was winter, and therefore darker earlier, and as it became darker our venue became cosier and everybody began to relax after a busy day.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (28)

Our favours were silver metallic snowflake decorations from Monsoon. They were one of our first purchases. We personalised them with ribbon and added the guest’s name as they were also used as place names. Each guest (children included) were given one and they were all taken home and used to decorate their trees that Christmas.

For our wedding cake we chose a Marks & Spencer Christmas fruitcake as our top tier as it was perfect for our theme of white and silver. The lower two tires were also from M&S and were plain sponge.

For our canapés we chose mini fish and chips, beef burgers and cheese and tomato ciabattas. We chose fish and chips as my dad and family have ran fish and chip shops for more than 60 years. For our wedding breakfast, we had vegetable soup to start, chicken, dauphinoise potatoes and seasonal vegetables with peppercorn sauce as a main and sticky toffee pudding with ice cream and custard for dessert. We felt that this was good comfort food that we would choose to eat on a cold winter’s day, reflecting the season we were married in, whilst also incorporating some of our favourite foods. All the food was provided by Top Table Wedding and Events who were fantastic and provided an excellent service. Anette and her team went above and beyond to ensure our day was perfect.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (36)

In the evening we chose savoury and sweet crepes provided by Original Crepes. This light snack allowed us to eat and carry on socialising with friends and family easily. The crepes were lovely and a perfect end to our wedding day.

For the evening entertainment we chose to use a DJ from Hipswings Events in Sandbach, to ensure a mixture of music was played to suit all our family and friends.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (38)

Following our wedding we would definitely recommend The Oaktree of Peover to other couples. It has lovely features, its exclusive use and in a beautiful location, however there is no accommodation for guests to stay. All guests that had travelled stayed at local hotels in the area, most chose to stay where we stayed – The Mere Golf Resort and Hotel. Many guests joined us for breakfast the next morning which was lovely.

We thoroughly enjoyed the whole day, though it went so fast. We particularly enjoyed spending time with family and friends, making memories. We enjoyed our time out as a couple, capturing amazing photos with Jonny Draper and also marking the beginning of our wedding reception with a bridge of sparklers. It set the scene for a relaxed and fun evening that followed.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (52)

Due to work commitments, we could only have a short honeymoon immediately after the wedding. We decided to go all out and booked a four-night stay in New York. We flew to New York a couple of days after the wedding and stayed at a very central location in-between Times Square and Central Park and enjoyed sight-seeing and some shopping. Our favourite moments included ice-skating in Central Park and visiting iconic landmarks.

A Winter Wedding in Cheshire (c) Jonny Draper Photography (47)

It must get said all the time, but my top tip to other Brides Up North would just be to relax and enjoy the day as it goes so incredibly fast.

Finally we must say a huge thank you to our parents – Matt’s mum and dad, and my mum and John, dad and Lisa – for their input. We are so grateful for all their help and support.

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