We are travelling overseas again on the blog today, this time to beautiful Lake Bled in Slovenia to celebrate Emma and Matt’s big day last August. The couple first stumbled across this gem of a location while inter-railing together at university and just knew it would make the perfect destination for their big day.
We can see why! This setting is overflowing in romantic feels – we’re talking beautiful architecture, secluded gardens, rowing boats on the crisp blue waters and the grandest of churches, all delivering the wow factor for our couple.
There’s lot of beautiful details to pore over, including their gypsophila, sunflower and orange dahlia floral arrangements, not to mention a three-tier naked cake made up of lemon, chocolate and hazelnut, and honey brandy favours. If you’re on the fence about tying the knot abroad, then this one might just sway you – enjoy!
With images by Teresa Cunningham
Emma says: We got engaged in April 2016. Matt had been planning to propose but I did not have a clue. He had told me about his boss going to Croatia and had asked for advice (as we love Croatia and had been many of times before), so I had told Matt to tell him about our trips and that the sea organ is a must go and see landmark in Zadar.
This went on for a few months, when all of a sudden, I received a phone call from Matt saying that his boss and wife could no longer go away, as his wife’s mum was very ill. He had offered Matt and I the trip and all we had to pay for was the name change (bonus!).
We headed to Zadar, a place we love and arrived quite late so headed straight to the hotel. We checked in and headed to the room to where we found a bottle of champagne on ice! I even said to Matt “your boss is very kind” with me still having no idea of what was about to happen.
The next day we woke up and visited parts of Zadar we had never been before and when arriving back to the old town to get ready for our night-time meal I suggested visiting the sea organ. Matt said let’s get ready and head over there at sunset, so off we trot to get ready. When we were ready, we headed out and walked to the sea organ, sitting there was so peaceful and relaxing and not many people were around. Me and Matt were chatting and he started to say how much he loved me and I was just responding saying that I loved him too, this is when he got down on one knee and proposed. The sunset glistening on the sea and the sea organ playing was a perfect setting.
We got married at Lake Bled in Slovenia on 4th August 2018. As I’m a teacher, August is the best time of year for me. We had a blessing at Pilgrimage Church of the Assumption of Maria which is on the island in the centre of the lake. We then went to Vila Bled for a civil ceremony in the gardens that overlook the lake.
We stumbled across Bled when inter-railing after university and fell in love with the area. We always planned to visit again and wanted a wedding abroad, so Bled just seemed so perfect.
We went for natural, summer flowers to complement the season and the outdoor wedding setting.
My dress was a fish tail fitted lace dress with an open back called Ornani from the designer Pronovias. This was brought from a local shop to where we live called Confetti and Lace. I always wanted an open back lace dress but had heard from many people that you have a vision and you’ll go with the opposite… I didn’t, I had a vision and that’s what I got!
Matt wore a lightweight blue blazer with light grey trousers accompanied by a short sleeve white shirt, tan brown loafers and a navy polka dot bow tie. All items were purchased from Moss Bros, ASOS, Office and Hawes & Curtis.
The bridesmaids wore Marks & Spencer multi way dresses in a pale grey, which suited both body shapes. My flower girls wore a floral dress from Next, this was in a cream shade with pale green and pink flowers. The fabric was prefect for the wedding day as it was very hot.
We hired four pletna boats from the private dock at our wedding venue to visit the island church where we had our blessing.
We booked Teresa Cunningham and would highly recommend her as she is so friendly. She did exactly what we asked of her, capturing natural and special moments throughout the day. She goes the extra mile…from helping me get ready and assisting with the groom’s buttonholes to rowing a boat out into the lake and laying on her front to find the perfect shot!
Our flower arrangement included gypsophila, sunflowers, orange dahlias, purple and white asters and dog rose, supplied by Mario Bezensek, Vila Bled. For the venue, we had gave our guests honey brandy which is a traditional Slovenian liquor. This came in 100ml star shaped bottles with our married name and wedding date on.
We had a three-tier naked cake made up of lemon, chocolate and hazelnut, supplied by Ema Zupan, Emazing by Ema. We had flower petals similar to our flower arrangements scattered around the base of the cake to complement the design.
We had karst prosciutto with sour side dishes and cheese from the Pustotnik farm, followed by roasted salmon fillet with wakame seaweed and roasted shrimp tail in kataifi dough, risotto with peas, champagne sauce and clover; fruit sorbet, roasted Slovenian beef fillet with a black truffle crust, celeriac purée, tortellini with ricotta cheese, and truffles, miniature vegetables, and Port sauce with truffles; and Bled cream slice, berries, buckwheat ice cream with buckwheat porridge with mint.
We flew out our own musician Matt Baxter from the UK who played for us during our civil ceremony in the gardens, the wedding breakfast and evening tree house party. We chose Matt after seeing him at a gig in Leeds where he played all our favourite songs, was entertaining and interacted with the crowd and had a great voice most of all!
We also had an opera singer and organist during our blessing in the island church.
These included hessian cutlery pouches made by hand, wooden table decorations, personalised goodie bags for the children and wooden name places created by on the laser cutter. We also had garden games including giant Jenga, giant Connect Four and Quoits for the kids, and the adults.
Petra at Da Petra was our wedding planner. She coordinated everything for us before hand and on the day. This made things so much easier so we didn’t have to worry and the wedding itself was not stressful and ran smoothly – we would highly recommend Petra.
Laura Jean Paper & Styling supplied our ‘luggage tag’ style save the dates, ‘passport’ style wedding invites and ‘postcard’ thank you cards. Laura was amazing and her attention to detail is the best. We would definitely recommend her for any bespoke stationery or decorations.
If you want a destination wedding then Slovenia offers the most spectacular surroundings, great local food, amazing hospitality and hot weather – and all for a reasonable budget!
Our favourite part of the wedding trip was the champagne breakfast the morning after the wedding day where we sat on the veranda overlooking the church Island on the lake and reminiscing about all of the wedding day highlights. We both said to each other that we wouldn’t have changed one single bit if we had the chance to relive it again!
We chose Columbia, South America for our honeymoon. We flew into the capital Bogota four days after our wedding day to spend three weeks travelling around this beautiful part of the world. We visited the coffee regions, the historic city of Medellin, Caribbean coast that included Isla Grande and Tyrona National Park where we went waterfall trekking, tubing and visited a local cocoa farm. We had the best time of our lives that we will never forget!
My top tip for other Brides Up North is – every so often go and grab five or ten mins together just the bride and groom to soak up what’s happening so that you will always remember the highlights of the day as it can quickly fly by without you knowing.
When planning the wedding, the inspiration features on Brides Up North helped us massively to give us an idea of what we wanted. We also attended a Brides Up North wedding show at Middleton Lodge, North Yorkshire for wedding inspiration.