Real Weddings

we fit together. a classic wedding at priory barn & cottages – charlotte & graham

03rd August 2018 | Alexis Forsyth

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A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (56)

After a picture-perfect proposal on top of the Rockefeller Centre in New York, today’s couple tied the knot two years later at the bride’s local church before celebrating with family and friends at the serene Priory Barn & Cottages near Wetherby, West Yorkshire.

The marquee is perhaps one of the prettiest we have ever seen, with fairy lights and more than 70 paper lanterns, combined with a classy blush pink and navy colour scheme, giving us all those romantic feels. Look out for the fabulous confetti shot too – one image we think every newlywed couple would secretly like to capture on their big day!

We just love the favours handed out by the bride and groom – jigsaw pieces that created photos of the couple on each of their tables. And then there’s the giant balloons, hanging hearts, a flower arch and even more twinkly lights to add that something special to the gorgeous setting. We should probably stop swooning now and hand the blog over to Charlotte to tell us all about it – enjoy!

With images by Hayley Baxter Photography.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (46)

charlotte says: We got engaged on top of the Rockefeller Centre in New York, on the 5th December 2016. For the final night of the trip, we had tickets booked to watch the sunset over the city from the Top of the Rock. After a nerve-wracking wait through security with metal detectors (which thankfully didn’t detect the ring!), we made it to the top just in time for the sunset. Graham then got down on one knee!

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (40)

We got married on 28th April 2018. We chose the date as we felt it gave us a perfect length of sunlight compared to other months with the added benefit of lots of spring blooms.

Our ceremony took place at St John the Baptist Church in Knaresborough. We chose this church as my mum and dad got married here over 30 years ago and I was also christened here. Plus, it’s a beautiful church in a perfect location in the centre of Knaresborough.

We hosted our reception afterwards at Priory Barn & Cottages. Even on a cold, dark January night we fell in love with the Priory on first sight. From the tree-lined driveway to the cottages framed with fairy lights to the beautiful marquee that we could completely style to our tastes – it was just perfect!

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (38)

We didn’t set out with a specific theme in mind, other than planning for a traditional wedding. We added a nod to our heritage by including English roses and Scottish thistles in our flowers. Our ‘jigsaw’ theme evolved from having jigsaws for favours (each table had one complete jigsaw which was a photo of us). We then had a table plan, table numbers and guest book also featuring the jigsaw theme. Little did we know our guests expanded the theme, thinking all the wood was dedicated to my maiden name!

We went for a blush pink and navy colour scheme. We liked the contrast and traditional feel of these colours and again, these were dedicated to our heritage.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (48)

I wore a Maggie Sottero ball gown style dress from Hoops A Daisy in Wakefield. The dress originally had an illusion tulle high neck but was completely transformed to a beautifully delicate lace shoulder. These amazing alterations were undertaken by the fabulously talented Danielle McGilloway.

When purchasing the dress, I was 18 weeks pregnant and the dress was chosen to give me the best possible chance of fitting back in to my post-baby dress size.

Caroline Louise Professional Hairstylist did my hair and Jay Galton took care of my makeup.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (8)

Graham wore a wool navy three-piece suit from Marks & Spencer. The groomsmen, meanwhile, wore navy three-piece suits, also from Marks & Spencer.

The bridesmaids wore David’s Bridal dresses in pastel pink and the flower girl had her dress custom made by Danielle using lace from my wedding dress.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (9)

As transport on the day, we had two vintage wedding cars – a Ford Bramwith and a Beauford both from Cartwright Cars. In addition, we also had a AEC Regent 1968 vintage bus for our guests, hired from Yorkshire Heritage Bus Company.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (3)

Hayley Baxter photographed the wedding. We chose Hayley, having seen the fantastic panoramic shots she had taken at a previous wedding at Priory Cottages. The photos she took for us didn’t disappoint and we wouldn’t hesitate in recommending her to anyone. In fact, she’s now our official family photographer having done a bump shoot, pre-shoot, wedding day and we’re already booked in for a mini-shoot for our son’s first birthday! We love Hayley and couldn’t have wished for a nicer or better photographer.

Video Lou filmed the day. We’d highly recommend Louise – she did a fantastic job. The highlights video she produced was amazing and everybody can’t stop saying how wonderful it is!

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (18)

I carried a natural bouquet with a hessian handle for a country garden feel. It included blush pink roses, ivory spray roses, blue thistle, gypsophila and other blush pink and cream blooms to give a romantic feel, with eucalyptus and green foliage creating a loose style. This was supplied by Natasha Coustol Floral Designs.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (23)

At the reception venue, for our tall centrepieces, we had natural round balls of flowers with the same flowers and greenery to go with the theme, to include trailing ivy. We also had low centrepieces consisting of a natural arrangement with the same flowers and greenery to go with the theme, also with overflowing greenery.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (28)

For the ceremony, we had a long and low arrangement with the same flowers and greenery. This was also used on the top table. Blush pink roses with trailing ivy and long raffia bows decorated the pew ends. We also hired an arch with a half full arrangement of flowers, including flowers and foliage from my bouquet. The bottom half of the arch featured white organza. In addition to this, we had a hanging heart comprising a mixture of flowers to go with the theme and this was attached to the side entrance door of the church.

Other decorations included a giant light box love heart provided by Crazy-Pix, a post box, fairy lights provided by AV Matrix, giant balloons, chair sashes provided by Bride Bay and love lights provided by a friend.

We put up more than 70 paper lanterns in the marquee that transformed the space into our colour scheme – it looked spectacular.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (31)

For our favours, each guest had a matchbox containing four pieces of a jigsaw. Everybody on that table had to work together to build the completed jigsaw which was a photo of the bride and groom. There was also a little bag of dolly mixture sweets.

Little Hearts Bakery made our four-tiered cake. The 12-inch bottom tier consisted of white chocolate sponge with white chocolate buttercream and raspberry jam; iced with ivory fondant and covered with blush pink buttercream roses. The 10-inch dummy tier was coated with navy blue fondant icing and then the 9-inch middle tier featured lemon sponge with lemon curd buttercream. This was iced with ivory fondant and decorated with fondant pearls around the base. As for the 6-inch top tier – this was chocolate sponge with peanut butter buttercream, iced with ivory fondant and decorated with a few fondant pearls to one side. To finish, a large blush pink fondant rose was placed on the right side.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (33)

Taste Cuisine provided the catering for our wedding breakfast. For starters, we had smoked pancetta and east coast cod fishcake served on a bed of peppery rocket fresh tomato salsa. This was followed by pan-seared chicken and fried chorizo with garlic and herb parmentier potatoes, and oven roasted stuffed sweet pointed peppers with parmesan crust. For dessert, we enjoyed an assiette of classic British miniatures, including warm homemade chocolate brownie, brûléed citrus tart, and raspberry Yorkshire mess served with fresh coulis, whole fruits and edible flowers.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (32)

For our entertainment, Chris Stocks played acoustic music during the drinks reception. Then Chris Stocks & The Guardians played a full band set for the evening. We loved the sound and type of music Chris played which included indie, 90s and popular hits.

We had a brilliant magician too – Mark Waddington performed during the drinks reception and wedding breakfast. We also had a photo booth in the evening supplied by Crazy-Pix and a sweet cart provided by the lovely Moments 2 Remember.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (39)

In the evening, we had a food van from the Artisan Pizza Company. We’d highly recommend them and a number of guests have already asked for their contact details.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (36)

Ellen from The Yorkshire Wedding Nanny was brilliant with our little boy Henry and we couldn’t recommend her enough. We couldn’t have got married without her

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (55)

We’d also highly recommend Priory Cottages – it’s a fantastic place to get married. The on-site cottages are brilliant for guests to stay over. Serena and her team couldn’t do more for you. The spaces were so versatile, and you could do anything you wanted with it.

Looking back, it’s too hard to pinpoint one highlight from the day. Obviously saying ‘I do’ in such a spectacular venue was up there. Also, the confetti shot taken in the barn at the Priory with all our guests above us on the glass balcony was a huge highlight.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (47)

After the wedding, we went to Ibiza on a minimoon just for a quick getaway and have our honeymoon booked for September at Sani Club in Halkidiki in Greece.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (58)

My top tip for other Brides Up North is, enjoy every second of it – it goes so fast and you’ll want to do it over and over again! Don’t sweat about the small stuff, as in the end everything works out fine.

A Pretty Wedding at Priory Barn and Cottages (c) Hayley Baxter Photography (62)

During the planning, we attended the Brides Up North Wedding Fair at The Mansion in Roundhay Park, Leeds, and also used the site to look at photos for inspiration!

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