Lifestyle Magazine

An Island Wedding in Yorkshire

By Claire

This wed­ding was sent in by Nicky Chad­wick Pho­tog­ra­phy. Nicky’s a friend of Eng­lish Wed­ding blog, a reg­u­lar con­trib­u­tor on my face­book page and a lovely lady whose com­ments always make me smile. Helen was kind enough to write a great wed­ding report — she’d worked hard to make their wed­ding day very per­sonal, mak­ing her own bou­quet and hav­ing it pre­served as a very spe­cial mem­ory of the wedding.

I’ll leave you to enjoy Helen’s own story, with pho­tos by Nicky Chad­wick.

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (3)

Helen and Rich’s Water­ton Hotel wedding

My dress was meant to be. I had a bud­get of £1,000 but fell in love with a vin­tage inspired Ian Stu­art dress which was nearly dou­ble what I could afford. How­ever fate stepped in and a beau­ti­ful bou­tique shop called Ava Rose Hamil­ton in Sils­den North York­shire had the exact dress in my size that had never been worn but was sec­ond hand, mean­ing I could get it within bud­get. It was a stun­ning soft gold color cov­ered in French lace and pearls with beau­ti­ful off-the-shoulder sleeves made from lace flow­ers. I really wanted some­thing a bit dif­fer­ent from the usual cream strap­less dresses that so many brides wear and this ticked every box for me!

I wore a pearl neck­lace which belonged to Rich’s late grand­mother and the color matched per­fectly with the color of the pearls on my dress. This was my some­thing bor­rowed and meant a lot to me that she could be part of our day even though she was no longer here. I also wore a dia­mond ring on my right hand that belonged to my great grand­mother which was my some­thing old. My other jew­ellery was sim­ple drop pearl ear­rings and a pearl bracelet that were from Deben­hams. I had a vin­tage style veil which went just past my hips in the same color as my dress edged with droplet crys­tals. I also had a side hair­band with a sim­i­lar design to the details on my dress that sat in my curls. My shoes were another bar­gain but didn’t look it. They were Kurt Geiger from House of Fraser but heav­ily dis­counted in the sale! I had wanted a pair like this for a long time and got them in gold so that I could wear them again after­wards.

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (4)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (5)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (6)
We were both keen on brown for the suits but found that most shops all had the same Prince Edward style that we really weren’t keen on. How­ever we found one shop that had a sand color lounge suit which sounds very odd but really summed up what we were look­ing for. The color was so unusual but stood out from every­thing else we had seen. Rich is also a Mod at heart and as it was silk mohair it appealed to his ‘sharp’ taste in clothes (his words not mine). His brown brogues from Churches were the crown­ing glory as far as he was con­cerned as they were a pair he had wanted to get for years. And his bit of extrav­a­gance for the day. He also wore gold cuf­flinks that belonged to his grand­fa­ther, some­thing that was impor­tant to both of us.
Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (7)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (8)
I’m sure every bride feels the same but the day really was amaz­ing and the most won­der­ful day I’ve ever had. Our cer­e­mony and recep­tion were all at Water­ton Park Hotel in Wake­field – a stun­ning stately home built on an island sur­rounded by a nature reserve. I stayed at the hotel the night before with a group of my friends and fam­ily and so started the day with a full Eng­lish break­fast in the restau­rant. This was shortly fol­lowed by hair and make up for me, my mom and the brides­maids. I found a com­pany who spe­cialise in vin­tage makeup and hair styles who did an amaz­ing job with every­one and added a touch of vin­tage glam­our to the day. I didn’t want a themed vin­tage wed­ding but loved the glam­our and ele­gance of the style. The cer­e­mony took place at 3 and so gave us plenty of time to relax and enjoy everything.

For the cer­e­mony we had a string quar­tet play­ing The Swan from The Car­ni­val of the Ani­mals to walk down the aisle to — one of my favorite pieces of music. I asked my mom to give me away as we are extremely close and it seemed right that she did this. The cer­e­mony wasn’t too long with the vows and a few read­ings but then on to the pho­tos and some drinks. We were lucky with the weather and able to make the most of the grounds for our pho­tographs. Get­ting the right pho­tog­ra­pher was impor­tant, as nei­ther of us were keen on hav­ing our pic­tures taken. We wanted to keep the day relaxed and infor­mal and found that this came across in all of our pic­tures.

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (9)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (10)
I wanted to make things as per­sonal as pos­si­ble and so tried to do as much as I could myself. The day before, my mother in law and I made my bou­quet, my 3 brides­maids’ and buttonholes/corsages for our wed­ding party. We also made a wrist cor­sage for me to wear in the evening as the flow­ers were really impor­tant to me and it meant I could still have them with me with­out hav­ing to hold my bou­quet. I spent a lot of time research­ing the flow­ers to use. I wanted a sim­ple rose, hand-tied bou­quet but really wanted brown to fit in with the color scheme. I found a beau­ti­ful vin­tage rose called Amne­sia which was actu­ally a shade of pur­ple but with a brown hue through it. We put this together with soft cream roses and brown skele­ton leaves for the brides­maids which picked out the color details I was after. We had great fun doing it and made it that lit­tle bit more spe­cial know­ing that we accom­plished some­thing like that.

I also decided to have my bou­quet pre­served. I recently got this back as it’s quite a long process and am so pleased with how they look. I didn’t want pressed flow­ers as they can often look quite old fash­ioned but the com­pany I used freeze-dries them and then re-builds the bou­quet in an air-tight, 3-D frame. I wasn’t sure how it would look but couldn’t have been hap­pier with it. It is a very dif­fer­ent but spe­cial keep­sake.

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (11)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (12)
Hav­ing the day filmed ended up giv­ing us a long last­ing mem­ory. As with the pho­tographs we weren’t keen on this at first but the cam­era­man was very dis­creet and we didn’t realize how much was actu­ally cap­tured. He also set up a room where our guests could go and record mes­sages for us which we didn’t know about at the time. Watch­ing these after the big day has been hilar­i­ous and also very touch­ing.
Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (13)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (14)
After this we went on to have a sit down meal and speeches. We stuck to tra­di­tion here with my dad start­ing pro­ceed­ings, then Rich and best man (his brother). We also had the whole day filmed and am so glad we did as watch­ing back over the speeches is bril­liant, obvi­ously I’m biased but they were the best speeches I’ve heard!

Fol­low­ing the more for­mal part of the day we had a BBQ in the evening, which was in a room with its own ter­race on the bank of the lake. We cut the cake, (made for us by a friend of the fam­ily), and had our first dance. For this we chose Here, There and Every­where by the Bea­t­les. Music is another thing which is impor­tant to us and we spent a long time try­ing to find some­thing that was spe­cial to both of us.

The Revolver album is one of our favourites and also requested that after our first dance the DJ played the next song on the album which is Yel­low Sub­ma­rine. A bit unusual but got every­one up and danc­ing. The danc­ing went on late into the night and ended up with most of the men wear­ing ties around their heads rem­i­nis­cent of school dis­cos! I think we even­tu­ally got to bed about half 2, both shat­tered but hav­ing loved every minute of it. We then went off to Italy for a few weeks going to Sar­dinia, Venice and Lake Garda. An amaz­ing start to mar­ried life.

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (15)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (16)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (17)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (18)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (19)
In between the meal and evening do we man­aged to get ten min­utes to our­selves where we swapped presents for each other. With­out me know­ing it, Rich had put together an album for me with one song for each year that we had been together sum­ming up some­thing that hap­pened in each year. For the last song he re-recorded Baby I Love You by The Ronettes, re-writing the words to fit us. Every time I hear this it brings the day flood­ing back to me and was a moment that really stood out for me.
Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (20)

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (21)

Wed­ding day advice

Sit down in your dress when try­ing it on at fit­tings – some­thing I learnt from one of my friends whose dress was fas­tened so tightly she strug­gled to sit down in it!
Get a list of the pic­tures wanted and give it to the pho­tog­ra­pher and a cou­ple of close guests who can round every­one up. This made our pho­tographs run smoothly and meant we didn’t miss any­one out.
Make it per­sonal to you both. We had noth­ing rev­o­lu­tion­ary for our day but spent a lot of time think­ing about what was impor­tant to us. Some­times it’s easy to get wrapped up in things and for­get what the day is really about.

Wedding photo by Nicky Chadwick (22)

Rec­om­mended wed­ding suppliers

Nicky Chad­wick, pho­tog­ra­pher
Ava Rose Hamil­ton dress shop, Sils­den
Cushty Chairs (chair cov­ers)
Mul­hearn Media (video­g­ra­pher)
Broughtons Bridals, Shad­well (suits)
LeKeux Events (hair and makeup)
Flow­ers For­ever (flower preser­va­tion)
Kendal String Quartet

Nicky’s wed­ding pho­tog­ra­phy blog is here

See Helen and Rich’s wed­ding on Nicky’s 2011 wed­ding pho­tog­ra­phy blog

Helen and Rich’s wed­ding high­lights film is on YouTube — on the Mul­hearn Media channel.

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