Real Weddings

Essense of Australia for a boho wedding at Middleton Lodge – Lucy and Alexander

15th November 2019 | Alexis Forsyth

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The beautiful Fig House at Middleton Lodge near Richmond provided the most perfect setting for Lucy and Alexander’s three-day wedding extravaganza in August.

The venue delivered everything the couple could have wished for and more – with an abundance of intimate, relaxed feels for their special day.

Deciding to complement the Middleton Lodge’s decor – they went for a boho look with a neutral colour scheme of whites and greens offset by accents of copper and gold for a truly classic palette. Lots of white flowers, combined with peach blooms too (a nod to the bride’s maiden name no less!) worked beautifully with the venue’s styling.

They had lots of special touches on the day including a memory ladder, personalised table rounds cut from a walnut tree Alex had planted as a child and – one we think we’ll be stealing – borrowed words of wisdom. Feeling inspired yet? Here’s the bride to tell us more…

With images by Littles and loves Photography

Proposal

Lucy says: We got engaged at Talland Bay, near Looe in Cornwall, on December 27th 2017. We were down in Looe on a family Christmas trip and Alexander just thought the time was right! He’d had the ring privately made to how I wanted one to look, but it was a surprise when it happened! It was perfect in every way – just us two and our dogs on a little beach in the middle of winter.

Setting

Our wedding date was 6th August. We had originally booked the wedding for the year after, however, due to personal family reasons we decided to bring it forward by 12 months. Being a teacher, a summer wedding was our only real opportunity. We had the wedding event from the 5th of August until the 7th though, to include a relaxed day before the wedding and a breakfast gathering on the Wednesday morning before people left for home.

We got married in The Fig House at Middleton Lodge near Richmond in North Yorkshire. We had a welcome lunch in one of the houses we had hired onsite, followed by a pre-wedding evening meal at the venue the night before the wedding with family and close friends who were all staying in the accommodation onsite that we had provided for them.

The ceremony, wedding breakfast and all the evening celebrations took place at The Fig House the following day. We chose to keep everything at the same venue as we simply loved the feel of the place, it also made logistics easier for ourselves and the guests.

As for choosing The Fig House, it ticked every box which we were looking for; the venue was intimate, stunning and had the relaxed feel which we were after.

The general style was very much ‘boho’ as we wanted the day to be as relaxed as possible, so the décor had to reflect that. We also wanted the style to compliment the venue, rather than jostle for attention with it. We chose the venue for the beautiful buildings and walled garden, so tried to create an ambience which worked with the setting had to offer.

The colour scheme was very neutral, using lots of whites and green, mainly in the flowers that decorated the venue. Gold and copper accents were added through the addition of candles and photo frames, but there was no ‘theme’ as such.

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Dress

I bought my dress from Emily Bridalwear in Sheffield (who were amazing from start to finish – I highly recommend them!) and I chose an Essense of Australia dress, which we customised with detachable flutter sleeves and a custom veil using lace from the dress.

I wanted something that was relaxed yet romantic. The dress had beautiful flower details which I felt complemented the walled garden and surroundings – everyone mentioned how well suited the dress was to the venue on the day!

Groomsmen

Alex’s suit was a blue Herringbone Marc Darcy three-piece suit purchased from Santoro Milan in Meadowhall, Sheffield.

There weren’t any groomsmen unfortunately. My brother was best man; however, he is an officer in the Royal Navy and was called away for deployment before the wedding, so couldn’t attend. We didn’t want to ‘replace’ him though, so both dads took on important roles that the best man would have done, including reading a speech he had left before he went away and presenting the rings. They both wore blue suits from Marks and Spencer to compliment the blue herringbone suit that Alex wore.

Bridesmaids

The bridesmaids wore grey/heather floor length gowns with low back and bow details purchased from ASOS, and my flower girl wore a Monsoon dress which also had a V-back and a bow detail in cream. The addition of back bows on all dresses tied the choices together nicely.

Beauty

Makeup and hair was by mother and daughter duo, Sophie Dakers (hair) and Karen Wilson Maude (make-up). They were wonderful and did exactly what people requested, as I wanted everyone to feel pretty and comfortable on the day. I’d highly recommend both of these ladies; professional, amazing at what they do and great price!

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Photographer

Our photographer throughout the day was Francesca from Littles and loves Photography.

We simply cannot recommend Fran or her second shooter enough, they blended into the background and caught beautiful, intimate moments that we feel captured the story of the day without us even knowing.

We are beyond thrilled with our photos and have nothing but bursting praise for these ladies, especially our main photographer, Fran. She has continued to be a diamond to work with even after the day and we will 100% use her again in the future.

Styling

All flowers were from Jane at Wedding & Events Floral Design; she came recommended by Middleton Lodge and it is so easy to see why. She knew exactly what we wanted when we described how we desired the venue, bouquets, buttonholes and hair pieces to look, and surpassed our expectations.

Jane and her team dealt with everything from start to finish. We had an initial telephone call (as we lived a distance away) to discuss what we’d seen her do before that we liked, plus anything else we’d seen on good old Pinterest, and Jane then wrote this up. We then visited Jane at her home and went through things in detail about a month before the wedding.

We used lots of white flowers (that were in bloom at the time so that they were seasonal) with long ribbon which was matched with the bridesmaids’ dresses. My maiden name is ‘Peach’, so we also incorporated peach flowers into all bouquets and table decorations as a personal touch.

Favours

We did personalised table rounds, hand-stamped with people’s names for their name places. The wood came from a walnut tree that grows in Alex’s family home garden, which he planted when he was 2 years old with his Nana. Unfortunately, she wasn’t with us on the day, but it felt like we had a part of her with us and guests felt like they were a special touch – everyone took them home which was lovely.

In addition, we also created a sweet table and had an open bar instead of traditional favours.

Cake

We had a three-tiered naked cake, made for us by a family friend as a wedding gift. We had a chocolate cake layer, a Victoria sponge layer and a lemon and poppy seed layer. She also handmade the ‘Mr and Mrs’ wooden topper for us. The guests said it was amazing and we totally agree!

Dining

We provided an open bar for the entirety of the event including the night before, so we didn’t pick exact wines. However, we did put house white and red on the tables for the main dinner as well.

The food was chosen from the incredible menu at Middleton Lodge. We offered two starter options, three main options and two dessert options. Tea and coffee followed too.

For the night before, we did a BBQ meal as we wanted a more relaxed vibe, rather than a pre-run of the wedding breakfast – we wanted to keep that food as a surprise as the catering at Middleton Lodge is amazing and all grown in the walled garden where possible.

Entertainment

The singer for the ceremony and throughout the day was an amazingly talented singer called Jenna Shingleton. She sang in various places within the venue depending on where many guests were and they commented on beautiful her voice was.

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Special touches

We did a ‘memory ladder’ which was lovely; we could include people who unfortunately are no longer with us and we could add pictures of Tom who was on deployment, so it felt as though everyone was with us. We also included baby photographs of us both, which provided great entertainment!

We had a polaroid camera station too where people took their own pictures, developed them and then stuck them in a memory book, writing a message to go with it. It has been lovely to look back on.

My maid of honour also arranged a ‘something borrowed’ for me, which was a ‘borrowed words of wisdom’ for our marriage. People wrote some lovely things, and also some hilarious messages. One from Alex’s dad read “Don’t argue, but if you do, let Lucy have the last word.” Short and sweet, but wise words!

Thanks to

If another couple is looking for a stunning, relaxed and very natural feeling venue then you can’t go far wrong with The Fig House at Middleton Lodge. The support from the team there was second-to-none and they couldn’t do enough for us. Not a single thing went wrong on the day and they made sure that we had absolutely everything we wanted and more.

Best bit

Alex says…the cake! No, in all seriousness, when we walked outside to see all of our guests and for them to throw confetti, that was special.

For me, walking down the aisle to see all our family and friends, and then see Alex there waiting. It was very emotional. It was just such a wonderful day from start to finish, filled with such special people and huge amounts of love. My brother’s speech was also incredibly precious – something I’ll remember and cherish forever.

Honeymoon

For our honeymoon we flew to Singapore and spent four amazing days there, staying in Marina Bay Sands. We spent our days exploring the amazing sights, smells and tastes that Singapore had to offer. It’s such an amazing place to spend a few days wandering around the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome, plus the Supertree’s light show is amazing to see. We also went to the Night Safari, which is a very interesting way to see wildlife in a way we had not experienced before. Not to mention Raffles Hotel – the home of the Singapore Sling – along with Michelin star street food; it’s beyond anything we’ve experienced before. The infinity pool atop the hotel is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and is one we’d highly recommend to anyone – both day or night – to see the city in a way that very few get to do.

After spending an amazing few days in Singapore, we flew on to Bali for the second leg of our trip. In total, we spent 10 days at The Viceroy, in Ubud in central Bali. The hotel was a beautiful small hotel consisting of only around 16 rooms. Our room was stunning, with a heated infinity pool looking out into the Valley of the Kings. We even had wild monkeys feeding on the leaves of the trees within metres of our pool! We visited local markets and a monkey sanctuary, as well as a full-day guided tour. We went to a coffee plantation, a water temple, a traditional Balinese dance show, to see the volcano of Mount Batur and explore local markets. It was a 9-hour day but fantastic. The local people are so friendly and welcoming and Bali is a beautiful place to visit.

Advice

My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to enjoy the day and take it all in, as cliché as that sounds! I can remember the day from start to finish and for me, that is a really precious memory that I will have forever. And to do what you want to do, not what anyone else wants. It’s your special day and although making sure everyone has a great time (don’t get me wrong, I obsessed over every detail to make sure it was right to which Alex said “no one will even know!”) he was right, no one did know if something wasn’t perfect but they did notice how happy we both were from start to finish, so that’s what really matters.

I follow Brides Up North on Instagram and found posts useful, as when we started to look we found that a lot of things were down south and we did start to think that in order to get the type of venue we wanted, we’d have to compromise and have a wedding in a location we didn’t know or want. However, as this is aimed at being ‘up north’, it was perfect for getting inspiration and seeing real weddings closer by!

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