Real Weddings Gateshead: Claire and Nick’s delicious afternoon tea wedding
A vintage themed, afternoon tea wedding was just magical for these newlyweds. Our WED2B Real Weddings feature reveals more: Claire and Nick first met via a dating website in January 2016. “We texted for a while before arranging to meet...
A vintage themed, afternoon tea wedding was just magical for these newlyweds. Our WED2B Real Weddings feature reveals more:
Claire and Nick first met via a dating website in January 2016. “We texted for a while before arranging to meet for a quiet drink one Sunday afternoon,” says Claire. “We hit it off straight away and felt so relaxed in each other’s company. Before we knew it, the bar was closing and we had been there for seven hours talking nonstop!”
Will you marry me?
The couple’s first trip away together was a short break to Amsterdam in March 2017. “We were excited to explore the city,” says Claire. “On 7th March we went for a lovely lunch at a canal side restaurant before Nick suggested we take a walk around the Vondelpark, a quiet haven away from the buzz of the city. We were sitting on a park bench by the lake when Nick pulled a ring box from his inside pocket and got down on one knee! I was so surprised, as I had no idea he had this planned. Of course, I said, 'Yes'. Then I had a little cry! Passersby also stopped to clap and wish us well. We celebrated that night with a bottle of champagne before surprising our families with the exciting news.”
Finding the dress
When Claire started dress shopping she knew she wanted to visit WED2B in Gateshead. “I’d followed the Facebook page for a while and loved so many of the dresses,” she says. “My original plan was just to try on a few styles for inspiration, but then I tried on Callista by Anna Sorrano and I knew it was the dress for me! The fishtail design was so flattering and the lace edge was detailed and delicate. I didn’t want a strapless gown or full sleeves, so the lace shoulders were just perfect too. My Mum and sisters cried, which confirmed my choice! The staff were also so helpful and positive. They really made it an enjoyable experience and I never felt hurried or rushed to make a decision. I purchased the dress that same day!”
Claire also wore the Estella belt. “I wanted to add a bit of sparkle and I felt it helped define my waist too,” she says. “The pearls were perfect for our vintage-themed wedding and complemented the lace detail as well.”
The perfect setting for an afternoon tea wedding
The couple chose The Parlour, in Blagdon, Northumberland for their big day. “It’s a gorgeous, quaint venue that’s used as a tea room when it’s not being hired for private functions,” says Claire. “There are several buildings surrounding a beautiful courtyard, so there was also plenty of space for guests to mingle. I’d visited the venue once before and knew that one day I would love to get married there. The first time Nick saw it he agreed immediately.”
The big day
The wedding ceremony was in the Old Smithy building on the 17th August 2018. “We decorated the aisle with gyp and the beams with bunting,” says Claire. “My Dad walked me down the aisle to the song, 'How Long Will I Love You' by Jon Boden, which is from About Time, one of our favourite films. Our close friends, Andrew and Hannah, gave a reading each. We chose lighthearted and humorous readings about life and love, which all our friends and family loved. Our favourite memory was being pronounced man and wife. Then we walked back down the aisle to Stevie Wonder’s ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered’ as everyone clapped and cheered!”
A vintage afternoon tea wedding
The theme for the day was ‘vintage English tea room’. “We wanted our wedding to feel relaxed and informal,” says Claire. “I wanted the venue to be full of bunting, so my friend Laura and I started the mammoth task of making 80 meters of flags from scratch. I loved how unique it was. Our favours were wildflower seeds in fabric pouches, which matched the bunting. We also gave each guest a small 'Hurrah' flag to wave and our florist created centrepieces of wooden crates full of flowers and greenery. There was also a homemade photo booth in the summerhouse, which we filled with props, signs and selfie sticks, for guests to enjoy.”
Tea, cake and cheese!
Bellini cocktails were served in the courtyard after the ceremony. Then guests headed to the Willow Room for afternoon tea. “We didn’t want a formal three-course meal and an afternoon tea wedding really suited the venue and style,” says Claire. Later there was an evening buffet of Italian foods, such as lasagne, focaccia bread and salads, to keep everyone going. There was also a wedding cake made of cheese. “After the afternoon tea we wanted to provide something savoury,” says Claire. “We both love cheese and had the best time ever tasting around 20 varieties to whittle it down to the final seven. The florist decorated the cake and it was served as part of the evening buffet.”
The most fun moment…
“In the evening we had a DJ and our first dance was to ‘Heroes’ by David Bowie,” says Claire. "When guests sent their RSVPs we asked them to include a song that would guarantee they would be on the dance floor. We gave the DJ a list of these and it meant the dance floor was full all night. Everyone had the best time!"
Claire’s Dream Team:
Photographer: Chris Randle Photography (heychrisrandle.com)
Venue: The Parlour at Blagdon (theparlouratblagdon.co.uk)
Florist: Joannes Flowers in Birtley (facebook.com/joannesflowersbirtley)
Cake: Northumberland Cheese Company (northumberlandcheese.co.uk)
Stationary: Sarah Wants Stationary (sarahwants.com)
Transport: Brooklands Wedding Cars (brooklandsweddingcars.com)
Décor: Ruby Tuesday Events (rubytuesdayevents.co.uk)
Hair and Make-up artist: Stephanie Gayle Bridal Hair and Makeup
Did your wedding have the wow factor like our afternoon tea wedding? If you would like your big day to be one of our real weddings send your favourite photo to email@example.com and we’ll be in touch!
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