I do love a destination wedding, the sun, the relaxed vibe and the al fresco...
We are heading across to Cheshire today, Knutsford to be exact for this super cute and fun filled Brasserie wedding, captured beautifully by Claire Penn. It’s a modern wedding that has a scattering of vintage touches that make the wedding very personal to the bride and groom. With a love of dancing and music Amie, the bride, bought two dresses, one for the main part of the wedding and then a shorter dress for the evenings celebrations. I’m sure you will agree she looks gorgeous!
Amie and Benwere married on 25th May at the Belle Époque Brasserie, Knutsford. ‘We loved the décor of the Brasserie, its quirky and a little different to a country house hotel, which we wanted to stay away from. We also loved that the breakfast reception room was different to the evening reception room. At night the downstairs was transformed into a bar with a dance floor, therefore, people didn’t have to sit around the huge tables at night, not being able to talk to one another. We had 100 to the day and approximately another 20 at night. It took the longest to find the venue, due to not wanting a country house hotel, but once we had found this, we spent 18 months on planning the details for the day.’
How they met
We met at a night club in Manchester 9 years ago. We were both a little tipsy when we first met but managed to meet up a couple of weeks later (not even remembering what we both looked like). It’s a good job we both took the risk that day!!!
Ben took me to Venice, I feel so spoilt and lucky to have been proposed to in such an amazing and romantic city. We stayed in an old Palace called Ca Sagredo and I can honestly say that we may never stay anywhere as amazing as that place was again! We were treated to the best suite in the hotel! Ben proposed more or less as soon as we arrived, to get it out of the way!! The ring was way too big (he must think I have fat fingers!), but I still wore it and kept it on with another ring I was wearing. Thankfully, he didn’t go down on one knee in public and embarrass me!
Why did you choose your photographer?
We chose Claire due to her style of photography. I had seen a wedding she had photographed on Facebook and I fell in love with her style straight away. She has an amazing ability to capture the whole day’s emotions in a stylish and relaxed way. Claire really got to know us both beforehand and spent time doing an urban pre- wedding shoot in the Northern Quarter, Manchester. This helped tremendously on the day as we were relaxed and knew what to expect so we weren’t taken away from our guests for too long.
I wore two dresses. My main dress was called Clara by Sassi Holford and for my first dance and for the rest of the evening I wore a shorter, simpler dress from Coast. I’m so glad I decided to do this. Although I love my Clara dress, it wasn’t easy to dance and let my hair down and having a ‘good ole boogy’ was a priority for the evening!!!
My head band and cuff was made by Debbie Carlisle at DC Bouquets. I asked for the head band to be altered slightly and Debbie was more than willing to make me my bespoke headband and I am extremely happy with how they both looked, worn together on the day. Her designs are beautiful and were exactly what I was looking for.
My shoes were definitely the best bargain of the whole wedding. I waited until the Christmas sales and found them in the Kurt Geiger sale for £29. I loved the colour and the vintage style and I can now where them with a pair of skinny’s on a night out! I think they were called Dazzle B.
The suits and bridesmaids
Ben bought his suit from Paul Smith and went for the ‘odd waistcoat’ look and bought a separate waistcoat from the same designer. His tie and pocket square were from Doherty, Evans and Stott in Manchester and his shoes were from Oliver Sweeney.
We bought the best mans and groomsmen suits from Marks & Spencers. Which were very good value for money.
The bridesmaids wore beautiful dresses from the Dessy Collection. The colour was Celadon, which gave them a lovely vintage feel but weren’t your typical bridesmaid design, so the bridesmaids are able to wear them again. I wish I had bought one for myself!! I’ll be sure to borrow one off them at some point though.
Theme or colour scheme
I didn’t have a theme as such although I did sway more towards a vintage feel. As the venue has such an eclectic backdrop I kept the wedding theme the same. It was basically a mixture of the things I liked the most. This probably is more my style to be honest anyway, I hate anything matching or coordinating.
The bridesmaids had Gypsophila which looked amazing against the colour of their dresses and mine was a mixture of Gypsophila with purple roses.
We had candelabras on each table with a Gypsophila and pearls draping from them, to give it a romantic boudoir feel and old vintage vases again filled with Gypsophila and tea lights.
The table stationary was made to look different and I tried to have a different style for each guest. The name tags were similar to luggage tags and the table name signs were various designs and sizes to match my ‘mish mash’ theme! My very talented friend Emma Needham designed these and at very short notice!!!!!
Personal / DIY touches
For our table plan we bought old style frames from Dunelm Mill as we knew we would use them again, and bought a lantern from Home Sense to put the cards in. We also put together our own prop corner by filling a floral suit case, from Dunelm Mill, with props that were donated from friends and family.
We had canapés straight after the ceremony, served with ‘Ruperts Rum Cocktail’. Rupert is our dog and we wanted him to play a part as much as possible!!!
For the wedding breakfast we decided not serve a starter as we presumed our guests would have eaten prior to the ceremony and would have had the canapés just before. We went straight into the main of pork loin or seabass and a delicious trio of desserts for afters. This left more room for the flowing Champers!
Later on in the evening we then served late night minis, along with our cheese tower made by Zoe from The Taste of Honey Deli in Didsbury. This went down a treat with our guests and at 1:30am, when everyone had left, we sat with our new extended family and devoured the rest!
We hired a Mr Bean lookalike, who arrived for a few photos in the prop corner and to mingle with (and mainly freaked out) our guests.
We hired a band called the Coolers who really exceeded our expectations and were just simply amazing! Gavin, the lead singer has such a talent and really knows how to get a crowd going. I didn’t feel like I was at a wedding, I felt like I was at a gig with my mates, which is exactly what we wanted. We also used a DJ called Andy Murphy who followed on from Gavin with music which was equally floor filling and exactly to our taste. We had asked for a mix of Indie and Manchester classics and to be honest this was the best part of the whole day. We hardly left the dance floor so it was a good job we didn’t have too many night guests!!!
Our first dance was to Luther Vandross, Never Too Much, sung by Gavin. We wanted it to be more upbeat and encouraged our guests to join us on the dance floor.
There were a few special moments, as you can imagine. Walking down the aisle filled me with complete dread but I absolutely loved every second of it. Once I walked it I wanted to do it all over again!!!!! Also listening to my Dads speech, which was a heart-felt story of when I was born whilst he was serving in the Falklands War. I have never heard this story before but I felt particularly proud of him celebrating my birth over a can of lager! Our evening reception was also a great highlight and just simply having all my favourite people all in one place!!
Ben – I had a lovely surprise off Amie on the morning of our wedding day. She had bought me a pocket watch with the engraving ‘Today My Dreams Come True, All My Love Amie’. Maybe I should have bought her something similar to make her turn up on time!!!
Advice for the bride would be to not choose your dress too early, unlike I did! I bought a dress 12 months before but then changed my mind. Thankfully, Lesley at Lace Bridal was very understanding and I was able to find another dress (Clara) in the same shop.
I would also recommend keeping the night guests to a minimum. Were so glad we did this as we spent the day chatting to our day guests and the night partying and not worrying that I hadn’t spent enough time with people.
If we were to do it again we would get married earlier on in the day. At the time of booking 2pm was the earliest they offered but 12pm would be much better as the day flies by in a flash!
Photographer: Claire Penn Photography – www.clairepennphotography.com
Second photographer: Vicky Sudbury torijaynephotography.blogspot.com.au
Headband & cuff – www.dcbouquets.co.uk
Beetle & campervan – Funcampers – http://www.funcampers.co.uk
Hair & make-up – www.annbarrington.co.uk
Table stationery – http://HYPERLINK “http://www.emmaneedham.com/”www.emmaneedham.com
Band – www.thecoolers.co.uk
DJ – www.andymurphydj.co.uk
Cheese wedding cake – www.atasteofhoneydeli.co.uk
Groom’s tie & pocket square – www.dohertyevansstott.co.uk
Groom’s shoes – www.oliversweeney.com