On Saturday 30th August 2014 we were lucky enough to photograph Jennifer & Richard’s wedding. Jennifer, very kindly, wrote these words, as her and Richard’s gorgeous wedding day is going to be featured in a future issue of Brides Up North Magazine. We thought there was no better way to tell you about Jennifer & Richard’s special day, than through the words of the bride herself! –

“Richard proposed in August 2012 during a trip to London. We spent a lovely evening watching the Lion King at the theatre and he popped the question on a late night ride on the London Eye after the theatre.

The wedding date was 30th August 2014. We wanted to get married on a date near to the date we got engaged- this was the best availability- avoiding the bank holiday weekend as this typically rains!

We got married at St Philips and St James church in Witton le Wear. Myself and my sisters were christened in this church as babies. We consider this to be our family church.

Our wedding theme was hearts. This was because the engagement ring Richard chose had a heart detail- it’s beautiful! I therefore used pearl heart sliders on all the handmade stationary- save the dates, invites, table plan, favour boxes. Hearts also featured on the cake, bridesmaid gifts and we gave love heart sweets as favours.

We chose a shade of blue to go well with Richard’s RAF uniform which is a shade of navy. We wanted a bright colour that would stand out on photos. I wore an Alexia design lace dress. I always imagined a strapless dress and I’m pleased I chose this. I chose lace and pearls to give it a romantic feel. I didn’t think I would opt for a train but as soon as I tried it on I knew it was the one for me. I didn’t want to be predictable and I think people including Richard would have expected me to wear a plain slim dress. I purchased this from the bride outlet at Northallerton. I was very impressed with the service and dresses they offered! And I don’t think anyone would know it was at a discount price! I also bought a veil from there which I kept on all day as I loved it!! Richard wore his RAF number 1’s uniform. He displayed his Afghanistan service medal and a buttonhole made by me.

Our bridesmaids (my sisters) wore one shoulder chiffon dresses. Our alterations were done by Image in Bishop Auckland– I highly recommend Bernadette- she’s fab!! They also wore strappy sandals from BHS. The groomsmen wore suits from Affleck and Moffat, Darlington. Our little 1 year old nephew had matching cravat and waistcoat.

Since a holiday we had a few years ago to Newquay I fell in love with VW Campervans Therefore when I saw wedding ones from Love Dubs I fell in love with Chaz (name of the bus) straight away. Their service on the day was perfect- I managed to be ready half an hour early and me and my bridesmaids, mum and dad had a little ride out before the wedding!!

Camera A provided the photography. We chose them as we had received positive feedback from others and could see the professionalism in the members of staff every time we met or spoke to them. We highly recommend them. Ann and Sarah were fantastic and managed to get all the photos we had requested! They did an incredible arrangement of having our guests stand in a heart shape- photos look great!!

I carried a foam flower bouquet which I made. I also made the matching bridesmaid bouquets and button holes for the bridal party. The vicars wife provided the flowers in church- they looked lovely. Bannatynes provided the long and low and table flowers via Elm Ridge. I purchased and decorated artificial bay trees for both the church and venue. I added foam roses and ribbons to tie in with the wedding. XLB events provided the chair covers and hoods- I loved the brooch details on the chairs. I made the favour boxes and filled them with love heart sweets.

Our cake was a 3 tier sponge and fruit design made by Cake Works, Darlington. The 2nd tier had hearts embossed on the icing. Our personalised cake topper was made by a lady I found on eBay (Tracy Davies of Tiddeewinks)! Jen’s family also provided a surprise cake in the design of a VW camper van!

We gave our guests options of food which included our favourites- such as cheesecake! Bannatynes were flexible with the menu and allowed us to tailor the menu to our favourites such as Richards favourite of lamb with mint gravy! On the evening we chose hot beef and pork sandwiches with chips as we thought this would go down better than sausage rolls! We chose prosecco for our toast drink, and pimms and lager for welcome drinks.

In church we had a family friend play acoustic guitar as guests arrived and whilst signing the register. To our surprise, Richard’s family arranged for a brass band to play outside as we left the church. On the evening guests were entertained by Paul Lytton magician- everyone was amazed! We also had music and disco from Callum Kay entertainment. In addition Richards brothers band played some songs on the evening.

My family created a slideshow of pictures of me and Richard from infants until now. It was lovely! And a nice surprise! Richard surprised me with an engraved pen to sign the register with, the engravement read my new name and wedding date.

Kerstie Potter from Truly Scrumptious hair and beauty, Bishop Auckland did our hair. Paula Black did our make up- I would recommend every bride to have their hair and make up done by them! Maria from the beauty lounge did our nails the evening before! I recommend all 3 of them- if only they could do my hair, make up and nails every day. There was no stress in the house on the morning of the wedding, I think this was massively down to having Kerstie and Paula there to pamper us! Gavin Shelley Jewellery Durham made our rings from scratch and engraved them. Gavin is fantastic and his after sales service is incredible!

I would recommend Bannatynes any day! Jade (events manager) was flexible and approachable. Andrea (toastmaster) was amazing at making the day go smoothly, and all the staff made our day extra special! If your looking for an intimate, private wedding- go for Bannatynes- it was like our little paradise! Even other guests at the hotel on the evening were lovely!

It’s difficult to identify a favourite part of the day- we loved every single minute, not one thing we would change. Seeing all the people we care about smiling was amazing. Seeing them all happy for us was lovely!

We haven’t been on a honeymoon yet, Richard was due back to work for an RAF training course on the Monday after the wedding- so no rest for us! We plan to go somewhere in January. In the meantime we have a mini moon planned for 1 night break in October!”

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