Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Jenna & Pauls Scarisbrick Hall Wedding Highlights

I am so very excited to be featuring my very first Lancashire wedding video today, courtesy of Love Gets Sweeter.  I am also even more excited since I met the beautiful Charlene, from Love Gets Sweeter, on Sunday, where she was exhibiting at Tatton Park Wedding Show, and I got to witness even more of her beautifully filmed weddings.  For anyone who is debating about whether to have a videographer or not, then please use this as a great example.  Jenna and Paul, who have kindly let me share their wedding video with you, were undecided about having a videographer at first, but after seeing a few of Love Gets Sweeter's previous weddings, they swiftly changed their minds and I bet they certainly don't regret it now! 

Jenna and Paul were married at Scarisbrick Hall in Southport, Lancashire on 11th June 2011, please be so kind to leave your comments below for the newly married couple. 

Jenna and Paul's Highlights from Love Gets Sweeter on Vimeo.

Jenna & Paul's Book of Contacts:

Monday, 30 January 2012

Advice from a Lancashire Bride

Let me introduce Steph, a close friend of mine and also a Lancashire bride to be. Stephanie Brown and James Wilson are due to be married on 16th June this year so I asked Steph if she had any wedding planning hints to share with you and here is what she said.

"I’ve never organised a big event before and so I thought that planning my wedding was going to be so stressful! It turns out, it’s rather enjoyable!

Pinned Image
I’ve always been to the same church all my life and it was very important to me that we were married there and so I just needed to find somewhere for the reception. We needed it to be reasonably close to the church and so we stuck to places in Lancashire. I did some research on the internet and we chose to look at four venues…Barton Grange in Garstang, Farrington Lodge in Leyland, The Gibbon Bridge in Chipping and Bartle Hall in Lea, near Preston.

As soon as we stepped foot inside Bartle Hall, we were in love! It has its own private driveway and car park and a beautiful but small private garden at the back. The main hotel can host smaller weddings of around 60 people for the day and then there is a large barn conversion at the back of the hotel for larger weddings.  The room itself is large with a dance floor at one end, a bar and lounge area in the middle, and the formal dining area at the other end. Most reception venues require you to leave the room half way through the day for tablecloths to be changed etc but, due to the size of the room, we would be able to stay in the room all day.

Bartle Hall- regional winner of the best wedding venue in The Wedding Industry Awards 2011
The style of the room – traditional yet not old fashioned, was perfect. We loved the fact that we had a completely private garden and, as well as the main area for the sit down meal, there is also a bar and lounge area where people can sit later in the evening. Because the room was so beautiful and large, we were rather dubious about the cost. However, Bartle Hall was cheaper than two of the other venues we looked at and there were so many different options for food, drink and d├ęcor. The staff at the venue were happy to talk us through anything and answered all our questions. I have also contacted the venue on numerous occasions throughout the year and they have always been very helpful and given me all the information I needed. They have sent table plans and are happy to decorate the whole venue on the morning of the wedding.

Once the venue was booked, we had to decide on a colour scheme and the theme that we wanted for the day. Whilst looking at stationery on the internet, I came across a beautiful invitation in ivory with a black ribbon and diamante buckle. I had already considered black as a theme and this invitation became the inspiration for the whole wedding. I am a huge Audrey Hepburn fan and so I wanted to tie this in as well.

I was slightly apprehensive about choosing my dress as I love fashion and didn’t want to have to pick just one dress! However, the first dress I tried on was the one that I purchased. Even after trying on numerous other dresses, I couldn’t even think of another dress but that one and it fit in perfectly with my theme. I would definitely recommend investing in a dress box to store your dress because, although they are expensive, my dress is still completely immaculate even though its been on top of the wardrobe for over a year!

Although I had found the invitations on line, they were £4.50 each which I wasn’t prepared to pay. So me, and my mother-in-law to be, decided to make them ourselves. We bought professional card, ribbon and buckles from an online craft store and invested in a laser printer to make it easier to print. It was really fun to make them together and they look just like the expensive ones for less than half the price!

Although we’re getting married in the summer, and it seems a bit dull, my bridesmaids are wearing 50’s style black strapless dresses from Coast which were very expensive…and very hard to get hold of in the right sizes…but the girls look fabulous! We then chose to just keep things simple and have ivory roses with greenery and black ribbon incorporated. I would wholeheartedly recommend Eden Florist in Chorley as they are very knowledgeable about different types of flower and the cost was much less than I had expected for roses.
When it came to finding the big things, such as a photographer and singer, we did a lot of research online before contacting anyone. We wanted a singer who could entertain guests on arrival at the hotel and also perform later in the evening for people to dance. We met up with Paul Guard, who sings swing and Motown, and he asked us all about our tastes and likes and dislikes so he knew exactly what we wanted. As well as being a fantastic singer, he can also play the piano and so will be playing while we have dinner. Our photographer, Tim Emmerton, came out to our house so he could find out more about us and show us his photography style. We were able to tell him exactly what we wanted and he was happy to do that. Both Paul and Tim offer a very personal service.

Its really hard when shopping around for the extras, such as favours and hair and make up, as there are so many options. To tie in with our Audrey Hepburn theme, I wanted some hints of Tiffany blue. Our cake will have a Tiffany box made of icing on the top, which we got from Chorley Cake Centre at a very reasonable price! Luckily, my cousin works for Bacardi and so he was able to get us Bombay Sapphire miniatures for free to use as favours!

So now, with only 21 weeks to go until the big day, all we need to do is sort out suits for the groomsmen and set up a gift list! I may have had almost two years to plan this wedding, but I really believe that you can plan a perfect wedding and be relatively stress free! I’m no expert… but I’ve put some of my top tips below!!"
  • You can always go to expensive shops or websites for inspiration but, with certain things, it’s so easy to get creative and make your own invites/place cards etc. Plus you can get your friends and family involved too!
  • Have a list of questions ready for when you visit each venue so that you don’t forget anything.
  • If you aren’t in too much of a rush, try to wait until that perfect wedding dress is in the sale. My dress should have cost £3000 (which I could never have afforded) but was reduced to £1000 in the sale!
Stephanie's & James' Book of Contacts:

    Friday, 27 January 2012

    A Taste of Lancashire: Blush Rose

    So it's the last post of the week from me and I have another fantastic and local Lancashire supplier as part of the Taste of Lancashire feature to share with you.  Blush Rose are a local florist specialising in wedding flowers and special events.  If you're inspired by Clare's interview and previous work then please leave your comments below for her.  Over to Clare...

    "When I first started out in the industry, I had no qualifications and just started out working in a florist.   I started work for one of the leading stores on king street Manchester and went on to work for Laura Ashley Interiors. I loved working with colours and patterns and before I knew it I was designing rooms and worked up a client base that consisted of clients that were famous on and off television.  Next I managed a fashion line from within the House of Frazer.  I have always been interested in anything creative and art and so Blush Rose was created as I had also worked within the wedding business on & off for over a decade.
    Myself and the Blush Rose team work along with brides creating their perfect day as regards the wedding flowers and venue decoration. We work all over Lancashire, Cheshire, Yorkshire and all of Greater Manchester. We also work internationally and look forward to some of the weddings we have abroad as they are always magical."

    Tell us more about your concierge service.

    "I started the concierge service as for most brides this is the first time they get to plan a massive event and it can feel over whelming. So when the bride books us to create their wedding flowers, as we sit discussing designs, we also ask if there is any other way that we can help.  If they are struggling we can provide useful contacts for them to use for example photographers, makeup, cakes etc. I only suggest suppliers who are reliable and I would use for myself and I know their work is first class.

    Do you have a favourite type of flower yourself?
    "My favourite flower is the sweet pea.  This is why I created a florist company, for the simple reason being when I was a little girl my father would grow them every summer and the smell was so intoxicating. This flower and its hypnotising smell brings back so many lovely memories of my happy childhood. I strongly feel flowers and scents can evoke such feelings in all of us."

    Can you describe the most memorable wedding you have experienced so far?

    "Wow this is a hard question as I have done so many. I have to say what makes a wedding memorable for me is when I decorate the room and I get the privilege of seeing the brides face when she walks in with the groom on their own to look at the decorated room.  Words cannot express that look when she walks in and gasps and if I get to see that I feel on top of the world."

    What are the wedding trends for 2012?

    "Block colours are in for summer weddings such as hot pinks and oranges. But I have noticed since the royal wedding and also Kate Moss to Jamie Hince that soft and wild flowers are in vogue. Brides are tending to choose soft and loose wild flower bouquets rather than uniformed structures. But like I always say each wedding is unique and I have never done two weddings that are the same and that is why wedding flowers are such bespoke designs."

    Why should Lancashire brides book you?

     "I am unique in what I offer, I sit and listen carefully to what the bride requires and the look and theme she wishes to create around her special day.  We only do one wedding per day as I will not allow others to do the designs or pass it on to someone else. I personally see to the picking and choosing of all the wedding blooms. Also, because we only do one wedding per day, and not several in a day, the bride is booking me personally for that day, which I feel strongly it should be."

    Have you got any tips for our brides when it comes to organising their wedding flowers?

    "Enjoy it and look around and see what inspires you.  Never feel silly if you have an idea but scared what others think, break away from the norm.  Flowers speak volumes and depending on the designs you can invoke certain styles without saying anything.  You can go for relaxed, fun, elegant, vintage, and chic, the list is endless.

    I love the fact that brides are becoming more confident and showing me designs as to what they want. The wedding flowers magazine http://weddingmagazine.co.uk/ which has flower recipes for putting together a wedding bouquet, is a fab read."

    Where can our readers meet you? Is there a website?

    Yes there is a website to contact me on or call 07837097639

    And we are on Facebook and twitter too.

    Thank you for reading about Blush Rose and if we never get the pleasure of working with you we wish you all the happiness for your future.

    Love Clare xx

    Thursday, 26 January 2012

    Alfred Angelo's New 2012 Collection

    I have been a big fan of the team at Alfred Angelo ever since their Disney Princesses collection.  So it's no surprise that I love their new 2012 collection just as much!

    A romantic, sophisticated and elegant collection Alfred Angelo have worked hard to blend current trends with tradition and all I can say is that they have done it bloomin' well!  It follows the Disney collection so well in that it ties in the romantic theme with the dresses still so fairytale-esque. See what you think...

    Style 2219:  The train from this dress can be removed so you're left with a shorter bodice style dress perfect for your evening reception.
    Style 2300
    Style 2280
    Style 2240
    Your local Lancashire stockists of Alfred Angelo are:
    A1 Bridals in Wigan
    Kiss The Bride in Carnforth
    Bliss Bridal Centre in Bolton
    Dan Kerr Brides in Preston
    Halo & Ellis Bridal in Preston

    What do you make of the new collection? Be sure to leave your comments below!


    Wednesday, 25 January 2012

    Are You The Perfect Couple?

    Award winning designers Dessy Group have come up with another blinder, but this time in the form of a website dedicated to showcasing your wedding websites.  The Perfect Couple "is the first site of its kind dedicated to showcasing the many beautiful, creative and clever, wedding ‘wed sites’ that are published every day."
    As the world of blogging and social media take hold of the wedding world, wedding websites have become a huge hit with brides and grooms to be.  They allow you be inspired off other couples stories, source venues and suppliers with useful reccomendations and they also provide useful advice and tips.  Many couples also use the sites to post their wedding invites, to make RSVP'ing quicker and easier and to display their wedding gift list.  As informal as it seems, many see it as a cost cutting excercise that still lets you put your own personal stamp on your big day.

    Lee & Jessicas wedding website from www.gettingmarried.co.uk

    The Perfect Couple have kept one step ahead of the competition by amalgamating all the websites together for you to browse on one easy to use website.  And there is even prizes instore for the best ones, as visitors will be given the chance to view and rate the sites.  To be in with the chance to win just nominate your own or your friends website at www.perfectcouples.com. 

    If you have a wedding website, please get in touch.  We would love to hear the pros and cons and would also love your thoughts on The Perfect Couple.

    Tuesday, 24 January 2012

    The Butterfly Effect


    The inspiration for this mood board came when I saw this picture of The Butterfly Dress from Luly Yangs Metamorphosis Collection.  Yes it is quite gothic but it whispers magic and illusion, something that every bride can aspire to when planning their wedding.  This is probably why butterfly's are a big theme for weddings.  Using some local and very talented people I have put together these Butterfly inspiration board to allow you to ooze a bit of magic into your big day.
    Real butterfly by Nicola Pearson, Butterfly fondant photo by Mick Cookson, hairpiece by HF Couture, birdcages from My Fair Vintage, Butterfly Bouquet from Love Bouquets (photo by Joanne Spencer), cupcake and blue butterfly cake by Cats Whiskers Cake Design
    Seating plan by Perfect Touch Stationary, Butterfly image from the Philosophy Flowers brand, butterfly in hair image from thirstyroots.com via pinterest
     I would love your feedback, so please feel free to leave your comments below.

    Love Lancashire Bride x

    Monday, 23 January 2012

    Amanda & Martin's Outside Affair

    Amanda & Martin Taylor
    24th June 2011 at Ribby Hall

    One of my favourite wedding venues in Lancashire (and one that I have blogged about before) is Ribby Hall in Wrea Green so I was extremely pleased when this wedding appeared in my inbox from 2cPhotoDesign.  Amanda and Martins civil ceremony took place in the spectacular Summer House, which is one of only a few places that you can actually get married outside in Lancashire.  Amanda, the bride, tells us a bit more more about their day...

     "It was a perfect day from start to finish. The planning of the wedding was a little different from the norm as I was engaged to groomzilla and the only thing I really had any say in was my outfit for the day. Credit where credits due, he did a really good job."

    "The one piece of advice we would offer any couple getting married is meet up with your photographers and venue staff a number of times before your big day as out of all your suppliers they will be the people that spend most of your day with you. So if you feel comfortable with them you will be able to relax and enjoy your day."

    "We would recommend both Ribby Hall and 2C Photo Design to any couple getting married as they were both helpful without being intrusive. People still mention how lovely our venue was and how amazing the food tasted. As for the photos they are amazing and personally we find that very important for when the excitement of the day has ended as they are a clear reminder of how special and perfect our big day was."

    Amanda & Martins List of Wedding Suppliers:

    Photographer: 2 C Photo Design
    Venue: Ribby Hall
    Cake: Kelly's Cakes, Blackpool
    Flowers: Sonje at The Wedding Place, Blackpool
    Make up: Sonara Parker
    Hair: Claire Osbourne at Phase One
    Dress: Ronald Joyce from Merry Hill Brides in Birmingham
    Shoes: Jimmy Choos
    Bridesmaids Dresses, Men's Suits & Jewellery: Debenhams
    Nails: Emma Pemberton at Phase On

    Friday, 20 January 2012

    A Taste of Lancashire: The Sweet Pantry

     New to the wedding industry, I first came across this little gem on Twitter and invited them to be part of the 'Taste of Lancashire' feature.  I love showcasing new businesses that have a certain spark about them, and with the Candy Buffets being bang on trend right now today's post is perfect for the bride with a sweet tooth!  So I'll hand over to Amy now but I must warn you, you may end up peckish after reading this. 

    I’m Amy and I run a new business called The Sweet Pantry – where we aim to make your big day that little bit sweeter.   The Sweet Pantry offers a range of unique sweet filled wedding favours, gifts and centre pieces – designed to have your guests ooo-ing and ahh-ing in delight. You choose your style, favourite sweets, colour scheme and personal message and we’ll do the rest. Your favours could even double up as place settings.   And imagine, a whole table filled with your favourite vintage and retro sweets. Let us introduce you to our candy buffet.

    We will decorate the table to your chosen colour scheme and provide beautiful glass jars filled with sweetie treats resulting in a candy table good enough to eat. We’ll even throw in striped candy bags and scoops so your guests can enjoy ‘pick n mixing’ their way through the sweet treats.

    We offer free delivery within a 20 mile radius of Bolton for candy buffets and centre pieces – but can deliver anywhere across Lancashire and to any venue. Our prices also include set-up and collection.

    Why did you start The Sweet Pantry?

    When I’m asked this everyone assumed I’ll say because ‘I love sweets.’ Well it’s true – I do. But it was more about offering a service which provided quality products which could be personalised to your taste, without costing the earth.

    After some research I found that candy buffets and centre pieces can’t be tailored and ordered online – so everything offered on www.thesweetpantry.co.uk can be customised and ordered online. Choose your sweets, style, colour scheme and personal message for any message tags – and we’ll do the rest.

    And if we don’t have what you’re after online – then brides can get in touch with us and we’ll work with them to ensure their sweet dreams are fulfilled.

    Why should Lancashire brides book you?

    As a bride-to-be myself (I get married in 2013), I understand the choices out there are huge, and you want to be able to put your style on any products you choose for your big day. The Sweet Pantry offers quality products and excellent customer service – so once you’ve placed the order you can move on to your next decision, whether it’s the cake, car or flowers, knowing your favours, centre pieces or candy buffet is in safe hands.   The Sweet Pantry is also locally based in Bolton, so we always love working with local brides and grooms.

    Have you got any tips for our brides when it comes to booking a candy buffet or choosing favours?

    Put your stamp on things. So whether it’s a funny or sentimental personal message to your guests on the favours or centre pieces and your favourite sweets inside – make sure any decisions you make reflect you and the groom-to-be. Remember you big day is all about the two of you.

    Fried eggs and giant strawberries may not be your typical wedding favour or centre piece – but it’ll definitely be remembered and make for some great photos. Remember candy striped bags and sweet scoops are supplied with all centre pieces and candy buffets – just like when we were younger!

    Do you have any special offers for Lancashire Brides readers?

    10% off until the end of February – simply use discount code NYSALE1 on the website – or get in touch if you’d prefer to order by phone or email.

    Where can our readers meet you? Is there a website?

    We are also attending Wedding Fairs at The Fisherman’s Retreat in Ramsbottom on Sunday 29th January and The Reebok Stadium on Sunday 25th March. Come and say hello!

    Thursday, 19 January 2012

    Slaidburn Wedding Fayre

    Sunday 11th March

    Slaidburn Village Hall
    The Green
    BB7 3ES

    Slaidburn Village Hall lets you put your own stamp on your big day whilst providing breathtaking views of the Hodder Valley.  As well as over 20 of the finest and local wedding suppliers around, the wedding planner will also be on hand to discuss having your wedding reception at Slaidburn Village Hall.
    Catwalk by Te Amo Wedding Boutique at 2.30pm with entertainment from amazing vocalist Laura Worden.

    Complimentary bubbly on arrival and canapes served all day.
    Speak to a wide range of wedding suppliers including:

    Simply Bows and Chair Covers
    Special Wedding Cars
    Te Amo Wedding Boutique
    Slaidburn Village Hall
    Shutterleaf Photography
    Riverside Cafe
    Bean Photography
    Grafted and Crafted
    Little Wren Designs
    Adam Riley Photography
    Laura Worden
    Flowers from the Heart
    Greenwoods Grooms hire
    Mrs Spendloves Truly Scrumptious
    Rebecca Jane Weddings
    The Wedding Guide
    Claire Murray Make Up Artist

    ** There are still a small amount of stands for businesses who wish to exhibit. **
    ** Only £40 to exhibit. **
    ** Sorry but we are currently full for photographers and stationers. **
    ** Please email joanne@simplybowsandchaircovers.co.uk or call 07584 026981 for an exhibitor pack. **

    Wednesday, 18 January 2012

    Grab A Wedding Bargain

    So the high street sales may have nothing worthwhile left, but here at Lancashire Bride we've got some of latest Wedding Day bargains from some of the best suppliers in the county.

    Fable and Promise Wedding Company based in Blackburn currently have a fantastic wedding dress sale on.

    Wedding Belles are professional wedding beauty specialists and are offering 10% of all bookings made before the end of January.

    Simply Bows and Chair Covers are offering free table runners when you book your chair covers with them before the end of January, email joanne@simplybowsandchaircovers.co.uk.

    Brides to be can receive 10% discount on bridal and pamper packages at Tropical Trotters.

    Pamper N Play based in St Georges Shopping Mall in Preston sell handmade pampering treats that look and smell delicious.  They are offering 10% of favours when you book in January.

    Butterfly Bridal in Lancaster are having a one day only sale on Sunday 29th Janurary 9am until 1pm.
     Absolute bargains on Bridal gowns, Mother of the Bride, Bridesmaids, Proms, Shoes, Jewellery, Tiaras!!!

    Sarah McLean Photography is offering all weddings booked in 2012 a complimentary engagement photo sitting with images.

    Wrapor- unique, bespoke, briald & evening wear shrugs and wraps- are running a January Facebook special.  They are offering £20 cash back on your Ivory faux fur Wrapor shrug, please use the Facebook link to quality. 

    If you are having a January sale, offer or event and want if featured on Lancashire Bride then please email me at joanne@simplybowsandchaircovers.co.uk.

    Tuesday, 17 January 2012

    Amanda Wyatt Designer Event at Glamour Bolton

    February 4th & 5th 2012

    Amanda Wyatt's 2012 collection has proved extremely popular with Glamour's brides and Debbie, owner of Glamour Bridal and Prom in Bolton, is delighted to be hosting the entire collection during the designer event.   Not only that but the amazing Amanda Wyatt will be there herself!  For expert advice on choosing your dream dress this event is a must for all brides to be.



    As always, appointments are at a premium so make sure you book yours now and get a voucher for £75 off your wedding accessories. 

    Contact Debbie on 01204 388390 to book your place.

    Monday, 16 January 2012

    Gemma & Ben's Almost Edible Lancashire Wedding

    Welcome to Gemma and Ben's Lytham Hall wedding, the first of many Lancashire weddings I will be featuring in 2012.  When Mick Cookson contacted me I just could not resist the girlyness of this wedding, and just wait until you see the intricate detailing on one of the most enchanted cakes I have ever seen!

    Gemma and Ben got married in September 2011 at the grand manor house at Lytham Hall, in Lancashire.

    Gemma looked stunning wearing this lace detail waist drop dress with capped lace sleeving.  And Ben looks rather dapper too!

    And here come the to die for details... butterflies, pale pink, sorbet lemon and bridesmaids in classic shift dresses, oh yes, I am in wedding heaven!

    With thanks to Gemma and Ben and also the fab Mick Cookson for the use of their wedding photography.  To check out more of Mick's work please visit http://www.mickcookson.com/ and http://www.mickbookson.blogspot.com/ where Mick regularly blogs his recent weddings.  And before I get lost in all the pretty little details I must remember to ....