Real Weddings

princess perfection: ian stuart for a classic wedding at allerton castle – carla & martin

01st August 2018 | Aislinn Thompson

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A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (45)

There’s a regal and romantic vibe running through today’s wedding with every element complementing each other beautifully; from the grand venue to the delicate blush colour scheme and the soft candle-light glow.

The floral displays are a real triumph, with glorious pink hydrangeas and roses taking centre stage. We also particularly love the luxurious flower garlands that line both sides of the staircase, where Carla and her mother made their entrance and proceed down the aisle. A truly beautiful spectacle – no wonder it was Martin’s favourite moment of the day!

Carla is breath-taking in a spectacular Ian Stuart gown with a tremendous silk train that gathers to deliver a sumptuous, ruffled effect. Topped with a detailed cathedral-length veil and a pretty headdress, she’s every bit the princess she hoped to be on her big day.

With images by Joel Skingle Photography.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (62)

carla says: We got engaged at Yorebridge House, Yorkshire, in October 2016. We were in a beautiful room called Rahmoune, a Moroccan hot tub room with a private garden. It was our two-year anniversary and Martin had surprised me with a night away. We were drinking prosecco in the hot tub while listening to our favourite singer Frank Turner. Martin came back to the hot tub after refilling our drinks and he literally slipped on to one knee and asked me to marry him! My step sister had got married at Yorebridge House the year before, so it was all that much more personal.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (38)

We got married on 2nd June 2018. We chose the date because we wanted spring/summer wedding and, on a personal note, my grandma has dementia and we wanted to make sure it was in enough time to ensure she really could enjoy it the best she could!

Our ceremony and reception took place at Allerton Castle near Knaresborough. Martin and I wanted a venue that was personal and inviting – kind of like a large house/garden-party vibe. We both fell in love with Allerton Castle the minute we walked in. Its aura, its beauty and the atmosphere just had exactly what we wanted in a venue. I would recommend Allerton Castle to anyone; the staff there are so incredible, the venue is stunningly beautiful – they go above and beyond to make sure your day runs perfectly without you having to worry about anything. Jessica and Hannah, the two main wedding co-ordinators, are amazing!

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (29)

Theme-wise, we wanted to go for a romantic, classic style that would accentuate Allerton Castle, with flowers being a focus and a noted presence of roses. Martin’s late dad had grown amazing roses, so it was our nod to him throughout our day. We also carried the theme of music throughout the day, with lots of live music as the day went on.

Our colour scheme was dusky/blush pinks with a hint of blue. We chose this to lighten the venue with a summery vibe and to keep the soft and romantic look.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (25)

When it came to my dress, I knew what kind I wanted as soon as I got engaged. I kept looking close to home and everyone mentioned Ian Stuart as a designer that I needed to see. I went to Ian Stuart’s Blewcoat boutique in London and fell in love with my dress. Ian Stuart made changes to the dress to suit what I wanted and added a longer train and cathedral veil. The dress was fitted to the hip and then flowed with silk layers. It had that romantic princess look I was dreaming of. It was my dream dress.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (1)

Martin wore a stunning, blue three-piece suit with tweed waistcoat and blue brogues from Bakers Tailoring in Middlesbrough. He had one red button on the sleeve of his jacket as a tribute to his father, who was known for his amazing red roses. The groomsmen wore the same blue three-piece suits with a blue waistcoat and blue brogues, also from Bakers. We went for a co-ordinating dusky pink tie and pocket square for the full wedding party.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (3)

My bridesmaids wore bespoke dresses from a small designer called Megan Griffiths. We went for a dusky pink satin with a low back and large bow detail.

The whole bridal party’s hair was done by Megan Dales of Farrah-Roses. I would recommend her to anyone; she was relaxed, professional and went above and beyond to help us all. Our makeup was by Amanda Bell of Norton, honestly the most incredible makeup artist ever! She made us all look and feel a million dollars and is the loveliest woman and crazily talented.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (17)

Our photographer was Joel Skingle. We would recommend him to anyone; his photographs are incredible, and he was amazing throughout the day to ensure we were both comfortable and happy. His infectious humour and personality meant that we and our wedding guests had the best day, and everything flowed beautifully. He captured our day exactly as we dreamed it would be.

Joel was also our videographer. His colleague was also amazing; they gave so much support and help during the day, even providing a last-minute mic stand for our singer on the morning. We cannot recommend Joel Skingle enough.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (18)

For our flowers we used Twisted Willow Floristry based in Ripon. They were absolutely incredible; I had a teardrop flowing bouquet that had dusky pink tones and a small hint of blue to tie it in with the men’s suits. I also had a small locket hanging from my bouquet (with Martin having a key on his buttonhole) and my something borrowed, which was a small Swarovski perfume bottle from a very close family friend.

Twisted Willow also provided the flowers for the venue. We went for an unstructured, natural look for all the flowers, with dusky pink and a hint of blue. The stairs were dressed beautifully and the wedding breakfast room looked stunning. Twisted Willow also added lots of candles to the venue to accentuate the romantic and fairy-tale look we wanted for the day.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (21)

For our favours, we wanted it to be personal. Martin lost his father to dementia and my grandma suffers from dementia, so we gave a donation to the Alzheimer’s Society and had a blue forget-me-not pin badge for each guest on the day as a favour.

Our cake was made by Sadie May Cakes, based in the North East. We had a five-tiered cake with ombre sugar roses cascading down the layers. It was a mixture of Victoria sponge flavour and a vanilla sponge with candyfloss buttercream.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (23)

Our caterers were Bradshaws of York. They provided amazing canapés with a nod to Yorkshire: mini Yorkshire puddings with beef, Yorkshire rarebit, chicken with Jack Daniels’ glaze and garlic-stuffed mini mushrooms. Our wedding breakfast was sensational: toad in the hole, Wensleydale cheese-stuffed chicken wrapped in bacon with a potato savoury Eccles cake and vegetables, and a dessert comprising a trio of chocolate brownies. Our wines were selected during our tasting: a lovely white Chilean sauvignon blanc, a red Spanish tempranillo rioja and prosecco for the toast and welcome drinks.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (35)

Entertainment-wise, music is a major part of our lives, so our wedding had a lot of live music included in it. We had a 1950’s seven-piece rock n’ roll band called the Fabulous Hurricanes for our evening entertainment. These guys were absolutely amazing; the three-piece brass section constantly interacted with the crowd and the band kept the dancefloor full for the whole evening. Literally the best band ever! We also had Trio Vivo, a trio made up of a piano, cello and violin, to play welcome music, music during the ceremony and throughout the cocktail drinks reception.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (24)

During the day, as special touches we planned little surprises for each other. Martin didn’t know the song I was walking down the aisle to and I didn’t know what our first dance song was. I organised one of our closest friends Andy Crowley (known as AndyGuitar) to play acoustic guitar and sing Marry Me by Train as I walked down the aisle. For our first dance, Martin pre-recorded singing to me with the help of Andy. He sang our song, which is a song by our favourite artist Frank Turner called There She Is. It was a day of personal touches, which made it perfect.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (41)

For other decorations, Samantha Green Calligraphy produced the most amazing name settings and table numbers, and created a stunning French mirror table plan. We also had a photo booth from Capture That Moment, who were amazing to deal with and so professional and friendly.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (74)

My favourite moment of the whole day was seeing my husband’s face as I walked down the aisle and hearing his voice sing our song for our first dance – both moments took my breath away. Martin says his favourite moment was “seeing my wife walking down the aisle: she looked like the picture of beauty.”

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (79)

Our honeymoon was another surprise for me, as Martin planned it and surprised me at the airport. We went to a tiny island off the coast of Male in the Maldives called Meeru. It was the most incredible island – our little piece of paradise. We stayed in a jacuzzi waterfront villa. The people of the island were amazing and the motto of the island – ‘no news, no shoes’ – was perfect for a honeymoon! Everywhere on the island – bars, restaurants – was on the sand, so no one wore shoes. It was an idyllic, perfect place to celebrate being a newly married couple.

A Classic Wedding at Allerton Castle (c) Joel Skingle Photography (80)

My top tip for other Brides Up North, is to believe in your vision. Don’t worry about what everyone else wants/thinks. Make your day perfect for the two of you. The biggest piece of advice is to take some time to just be together as husband and wife. Stop for a few moments and take a mental picture of all the people you love in the world being there to celebrate you both. Our wedding was the most amazing experience of our lives and we wouldn’t change a thing. Don’t ever forget the memories – the moments that take your breath away.

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