With their heart set on a big celebration with close friends and family, only the captivating backdrop of a former textiles mill would do when it came to Sarah and Gareth’s special day.
Tying the knot at Holmes Mill in Clitheroe just before Easter in 2019, it was the perfect start to everyone’s long weekend – complete with a live band, plenty of dancing, and scrumptious chocolate eggs as favours!
Chock full of pretty styling touches – think glass jars, candles and a smattering of tulips – the couple created a romantic, understated setting complemented by bright pops of pink and turquoise blue hues. Want to hear more? Here’s Sarah to spill all the gorgeous details.
With images by Jules Fortune Photography
Sarah says: We were on holiday in Cuba in December 2017. Prior to going away he had secretly told my parents and bought a temporary ring. I was not expecting Gareth to propose – it was such a lovely surprise. On returning home, I designed my own ring from Mitchell and Co located in the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham.
We tied the knot on 18th April 2019. We chose that date as it was the Thursday before Good Friday and we wanted to give our friends and family a great start to the long Easter weekend.
We got married at Holmes Mill in Clitheroe. We wanted a really relaxed wedding venue where they would pretty much organise it for us, and the team at Holmes Mill were great – they made it so easy and stress free. For us, we just wanted a big party and celebration with our close friends and family. We also really love beer so the idea of getting married in a brewery was perfect!
We didn’t have a particular colour scheme. I found the bridesmaids and flower girls dresses we liked and then our florist recommended colours to complement these.
I just wanted a simple, non-fussy dress which flattered my figure and would make me feel comfortable on the day. I only went to one wedding dress shop, The Dressing Rooms Bridal near Birmingham, and tried on a few dresses. I fell in love with the one I chose – a Mikaella Bridal gown.
My sister in law and mother in law got the flower girl dresses from Monsoon.
A company called Lipstick & Curls did mine and the bridal party’s hair and makeup. Amanda and her team were great and made the whole experience really relaxed.
We decided to spend the night before the wedding at the hotel onsite at Holmes Mill. Fortunately, most of our wedding party also travelled up the night before. We then all had dinner and drinks together, kicking off the party early.
We chose Jules Fortune as a number of her photographs featured in the Holmes Mill wedding brochure and we really liked the style of her photographs. When we met Jules, she really understood the style and vibe we wanted for our wedding. We mainly wanted natural pictures and Jules really respected this. On the day she was fab, and fitted in with the relaxed vibe, making us feel really comfortable. She really captured what our wedding was all about and I just love the pictures.
We used a local florist in Clitheroe – The Flower Shop. I didn’t have a set idea in mind, other than that I wanted tulips to feature somewhere. The florist helped to choose the colours and types of flowers we used, and I really liked the overall look on the day.
The Flower Shop set up all the flowers and table decorations, and helped us to achieve a stress-free wedding. We also had jars filled with flowers and candles, as we didn’t want anything too fussy.
For our invitations, we wanted to keep them simple, so used Papier.
We decided to give our guests Easter eggs for favours and these went down very well.
We weren’t too bothered about having a cake. It was actually Gareth’s parents’ 40th wedding anniversary only a few weeks before the wedding, and Gareth and his sister had bought a surprise cake for them and they had the honour of cutting the cake.
All the food and drink was provided in-house by Holmes Mill. For the drinks reception we had a combination of prosecco and a selection of beers served alongside relaxed canapés, including a selection of pies and crisps.
For the wedding breakfast, we chose two options for each course accompanied by prosecco, white and red wine on the tables. Then, in the evening, we had a selection of cheeses, chutney and bread.
For us, having a live band was the most important aspect of the wedding and we went with UTC Entertainment based in Manchester. We chose them because they had played at our friend’s wedding and they were amazing. On our wedding night they were brilliant, all our friends and family were up on the dance floor.
Holmes Mill was brilliant, and we would highly recommend Stacey and her team. They were so helpful and professional in the planning stages of our wedding, and they really took the stress out of everything. On the day itself, they set up the room for the ceremony and wedding breakfast. We didn’t need a master of ceremony because they kept the day on track. If you are after a relaxed wedding day I would highly recommend this venue.
The wedding was about having a party, so once the formalities were over we thoroughly enjoyed hanging out with our friends and the band.
We went to Morocco for our honeymoon and stayed a couple of days in Marrakech before travelling to Essaouira to chill out. We stayed in Les Jardin des Douars which was amazing.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be, work out the most important aspect of your wedding and don’t stress about the other bits. Also, choose a venue and suppliers that can take the stress out of the planning and organisation process.