For a masterclass in stylish spring nuptials, look no further than Lauren and Simon’s glamorous celebration. Crisp blooms, a sleek city setting and that Catherine Deane gown… it’s safe to say we’re a little bit smitten with today’s elegant wedding.
Following a surprise sunset proposal, Lauren and Simon swapped their initial country-charm wedding plans for a cool city venue, opting for the King Street Townhouse in Manchester to host their celebration. With nothing more than a modern aesthetic in mind – no themes around here, thank you very much – the couple created their dream wedding, surrounded by family and friends.
Read on for a chic inspiration fix – and prepare to swoon over that gorgeous naked cake, too.
Lauren says: We got engaged on 10th September 2017. Earlier that year, Simon had booked us a holiday to Lanzarote (or so I thought!). The day before we were due to go, I was handed a surprise note at work from Simon. The note led me on a treasure hunt, and I had to gather clues from my closest friends and family. The clues revealed we were actually going on a surprise holiday to Santorini; since meeting Simon, I had said how much I would love to go there!
Whilst watching an amazing sunset, Simon got down on one knee and asked me to marry him – and of course, I said yes!
We got married on 20th April 2019. We chose this date because it fell on the Saturday of Easter and we loved the idea of celebrating over a long weekend; plus, everyone would have an extra day to recover from the terrible hangovers! We were also hoping the weather would be warming up – little did we know there would be a random heat wave and the sun would actually be blazing all day.
Our whole wedding was held at King Street Townhouse in Manchester city centre. We initially viewed a few barn venues in the countryside; however, we quickly realised this wasn’t for us and that we wanted something a bit different. We decided to view a couple of city centre venues and as soon as we saw the incredible city views from the terrace at King Street Townhouse, we fell in love! Manchester is our favourite city and we love to go out there, so it seemed perfect to have our wedding there. It also meant it was easy for our guests for travel. The staff were also amazing and so helpful and reassuring throughout the whole process, which really put us at ease. Our wedding coordinator, Natalie, was always available for any questions we had and our day went so smoothly from start to finish. The team really go the extra mile to make you feel special!
We always wanted a more modern style for our wedding rather than anything traditional but didn’t really have a particular theme in mind. The venue was already stunning, and we kept things simple with flowers and candles to complement the room.
We went with different shades of pink for the flowers, which really complemented the navy, pale blue and grey of the suits and bridesmaid dresses. We also added touches of copper around the room, including copper candle holders and table name stands, to match the warm metal frame we had hired.
I always knew that I didn’t want anything too traditional when it came to my wedding dress. I spent hours searching for inspiration and came across some ‘two-piece’ wedding dresses, which I really loved the look of.
From there, I found a designer called Catherine Deane with a range of wedding separates and I fell in love with the first one I tried on. It became even more unique as I chose a few different pieces to create the full dress, including an amazing tulle overskirt and lace top. I also wore a veil, and heels from Monsoon.
Simon wore a navy suit with a grey double-breasted waistcoat which he hired from John Francis in Bolton. They were really helpful and had an impressive range of suits to choose from; the groomsmen also hired their three-piece suits from there, too.
My bridesmaids wore beautiful dresses, which I ordered online from TFNC. They were a perfect fit and didn’t break the bank either!
Our hair and makeup was done by Sarah Morten and her lovely assistant, Nic. Sarah is absolutely wonderful and did such an amazing job, I couldn’t have been happier. She is so lovely, calm and easy to talk to, which really put me at ease on the morning of the wedding. I knew I wanted a very natural and relaxed look for my hair and makeup. I don’t wear much makeup day to day and wanted to recognise myself on my wedding day! Sarah made me feel beautiful and listened to exactly what I wanted she was also on hand all morning to help with any finishing touches.
We didn’t need any transport for the day. I spent the night before the wedding at King Street Townhouse with my sister, which was lovely, and Simon also stayed at a hotel close to the venue.
Our photographer was the wonderful Robyn from Bobtale Photography. I have known Robyn for many years, and I knew as soon as we booked our wedding that I would want her to be our photographer!
We had seen a lot of her work and we both loved the natural style. Robyn was brilliant on the day, she made us feel so relaxed and comfortable and we actually had fun having our pictures taken. She worked so well alongside our videographers and came up with some amazing ideas for photos in the city centre, which we love. She also caught some brilliant natural shots of our guests and other little details that we would have completely missed, which really made us smile. We would recommend Robyn to anyone.
We chose Sky Weddings to be our videographer. Jake and Josh were both brilliant and really put us at ease. We were unsure about having a video at first, but it was honestly the best decision and we are so happy we went with Sky Weddings.
We saw some of their work on Facebook and were really impressed. We then met the guys at a wedding fair, and they were so lovely and enthusiastic about our wedding. We were particularly impressed with the drone footage they captured of the terrace and Manchester skyline – we’ve had so many compliments about the video!
Our florist was Grace from Maybe May Flower Studio. I carried a beautiful bouquet of flowers with pink ribbon attached, which I loved. Grace also provided matching posies for the bridesmaids as well as buttonholes for the groom and groomsmen. We had gatherings of flowers down the aisle, on the ceremony table and top table, as well as bunches of flowers as centrepieces on the guest tables.
I wanted the look to be lean towards relaxed and wild. Grace took all of my ideas on board and I was absolutely made up when I saw the finished result on the day. For decoration, I bought a variety of different candle holders for tea lights and pillar candles. After finding images on Pinterest, I was also inspired to buy some pale pink candlesticks with brass candlestick holders. I found some lovely copper lanterns, which I decorated with fairy lights, and a couple of cute peg boards to write my own messages on. The venue staff did an amazing job of setting everything up for the reception.
We hired a large copper frame with a neon ‘happily ever after’ sign from The Word is Love. We would definitely recommend them – they set-up the frame for us on the morning of the wedding and it was the perfect finishing touch to the room. Our guests loved it and it became a favourite spot for picture-taking. All of our stationery was provided by Lilac and White, I loved the simplistic and elegant styles they had and it was really easy to order everything from them online.
We were looking into ideas for wedding favours when we came across the idea of shots! We both thought this would be a great way to get the evening party started – it was also perfect for us as our friends and family know how much we like to party. I found some cute glass jars with lids and filled them with salted caramel flavoured vodka.
We chose a four tier semi-naked wedding cake, which was decorated with flowers provided by our florist. Our cake was made by Mrs Lyon’s Tea Rooms in Standish: it looked and tasted incredible. We went for a tasting evening at Mrs Lyon’s to choose what we wanted; it was obviously our favourite part of the wedding planning! They were so friendly and helpful, and they brought our cake to the venue to set up on the day.
The food was provided by the venue and it was all perfect: we had so many comments from our guests on how delicious it was. We chose a tomato and basil soup starter, beef for the main course and a trio of mini desserts. They also provided vegan/vegetarian options for each course, which was really important as my mum and sister are both vegan.
For the evening food, we chose a selection of ‘midnight munchies’ including peri peri chicken burgers, fish-and-chip cones and pizza slices, which were perfect after a couple of hours on the dancefloor. We brought our own prosecco to the venue for the wedding reception and toasts (we paid a corkage charge for this). We also chose a selection of red, white and rose wines from the venue for the meal so that there was plenty of choice for our guests.
During the wedding ceremony, reception and meal, we had the Manchester String Quartet playing a variety of songs. They were brilliant and had a huge range of songs to please everyone’s musical tastes! We went for a mix of ‘Manchester music’ during the reception, which was great for our venue. They also offered a ‘juke box’ option, so guests could choose songs throughout the day. This added a special touch and we had fun guessing which songs they were playing!
For the evening entertainment, we found a band via Jonny Ross Music. We went to watch them play at a showcase event and loved their style which was a mix of RnB, Motown, soul and pop music. The band played our first dance for us which made it extra special; the singer was amazing and had everyone up on the dancefloor.
We had a Polaroid camera for our guests to take pictures with and stick into our guestbook; this was a great way for us to capture memories of the day and we have loved looking through the pictures (and laughing at the ones taken after too many wines…)
One of our best men gave us a selfie stick during his speech as a joke (Simon loves a selfie!). It turned out to be the best idea as we ended up with hundreds of selfies from the evening reception.
We would 100% recommend our choice of venue to any couple. Its views across the Manchester skyline blew us away and it is such a stylish and unique place. We loved the outdoor terrace area and it was great to see our guests spending time there enjoying a drink.
We just loved seeing all of our close family and friends together in one place having such a great time and celebrating with us. It was so nice to see everyone laughing and having fun. We also had a moment on our own after the meal to take everything in, it all felt so surreal.
We went to Mexico for our honeymoon a few days after the wedding. We spent the first four days on a small island called Isla Mujeres, which was lovely: we hired a golf cart and toured the whole island, stopping at a turtle sanctuary on the way. We then spent ten days in a gorgeous hotel on the Riviera Maya for some much-needed relaxation time after all of the wedding planning.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would just be to enjoy every part of it, including the planning. I really stressed over the smaller things and none of it mattered to me on the day!