Real Bride Diaries: It Takes Two

It takes two (well three if you’re including the photographer, four if you’re including a pug)

All of my photos of myself and Danny are woefully trapped in my phone or online, with most of them being oddly angled selfies. I miss the days of having printed photos stuck on the fridge, where you can see everyone’s body from head to toe.

I jumped at the chance to book a pre wedding shoot with Luke, what a great way to see how the big day will run and collect a few shots (where you can see mine and Danny’s bottom halves).

And so off me, Danny and our cheeky pug, Wilson went! We wanted to capture our history together and thought where else but Manchester! This is where we met and where it all began. 

We started by walking Wilson by the canal, and the ideas Luke suggested were brilliant. Sitting on bridges, climbing on walls, incorporating interesting backgrounds and of course the all important pizza shot! (Rudy’s pizza in Ancoats is a must go folks, even Wilson thought so!). 

There was nothing which screamed “traditional wedding photography”. I wanted something unusual, current and fun!

After tucking Wilson in for his afternoon nap (he needs his beauty sleep), Danny, Luke and myself ventured into the city centre. Surrounded by graffiti, towering buildings and the crowds this was the perfect location to show who we are. We even took the opportunity to visit places where we had our first date and where we shared our first kiss.

I admit I was nervous how Danny would be in front of the camera but he was a natural ha ha! There isn’t a photo which fails to make me smile, each shot Luke has captured who we are perfectly. And every time I look they make me more thankful and excited for the big day! (Only 340 days to go, but who’s counting).

The pre wedding shoot has definitely made me more relaxed. Being an organised nerd, I always have to plan every little detail, but I know I can leave Luke to handle the entire day.

Our shoot will unquestionably make its way printed into an album, it’s too extraordinary to remain trapped online..

Lucy x

Real Bride Diaries: He thinks you're perfect, because you are

No girl or in fact bride, should feel ashamed to show off their fabulous figure. Working in the fashion industry I am surrounded by all types of bodies, each unique, stunning and strong.

There is a reason why your partner has popped the question, and it's because those parts of you which you don't like, they find to be the best part about you. Whether you have a goal to loose a few lbs or to tone those buns, I will show you what classes I find give you that extra burst of determination to look stunning on your special day. 

After watching a few spin classes online, I loved the pace, the loud music and how effortless people make it look. Yes.. it looks effortless but I can confirm this class isn't for the weak hearted or weak legs! I signed up to a 45 minute class of non stop peddling. I admit I wanted to give up in the first 2 minutes.. I kept looking at the clock, praying it had malfunctioned (it sadly did not). 

However, after being in a room full of determined (and very sweaty) people this does rub off on you! I was tired but I was proud I lasted the full class and felt encouraged to keep at it. I would recommend this class for brides who want a hard workout, brace yourself and prepare for a sore bottom!

If cardio is not your strong point, then why not try a dance class? I am a lover of a good routine and pretending I am a Beyoncé backing dancer (who isn’t?). Zumba is such a fun class, especially if you have an energetic instructor! It’s a good way of incorporating squats, jumps and lunges into your gym session without even realizing! Turn the bass on loud and get ready to do a few dramatic hair flicks! 

Lifting weights is not just for Arnold Schwarzenegger. Pumping some iron is great for burning calories and general toning. Don’t be afraid of being the only person unable to lift 20kg on your first try, this class is about personal development. I have been a few times and I am still on the lightest weights, but you definitely feel the burn from lifting and squatting. Most gyms offer pump classes which tend to be mainly women orientated, so you don’t have to worry about being surrounded by teams of muscle men.

Stay fierce, stay true and stay at the gym for an extra lap!

Oh, and if you ever want an excuse not to go the gym, try not to use the dog ate my trainers.. although in this case I can use it as an excuse to buy new trainers!

Lucy x

Real Bride Diaries: Who to capture those perfect moments?

"Choosing your wedding photographer can be just as important as choosing the dress itself. You need to feel comfortable, confident and ensure it fits perfectly.

There are so many types of photographers out there and it is important to get to know them as a person and to see their previous work. I knew I wanted something different, to stray away from the traditional and enter a world of excitement and intrigue...

Little did I know some wedding photographers can cost a good chunk of your wedding fund. With their different packages and offers how can you decide who is right for you, who will make the effort to understand your requests as a couple and who is in it just for the money?

Trust is hard to give especially as a bride, when you want your day to run without a hitch and for everything to be right on time. (Particularly when you’re like me, with countless note books, diaries and sticky notes). You want to make sure the photographer/s are on the same wave length, even suggesting creative ideas which make your tummy flip! That's exactly what we found with Luke.

Thanks to my Mum (shout out to Beverley!), she sent me the link to Luke's website. She knew what I was looking for, non traditional, quirky, imaginative, something you would see in a Vogue Magazine centre fold. I looked at Luke’s website and immediately knew he would get the look I wanted. His imagery is fresh, unique and he captures exactly what I want to remember from the big day. He traps the atmosphere, laughter and emotion of the people through his camera. I can tell he will suggest ways of making the day even more special and we will be on board!

The next step, Danny and myself met Luke (@yardandcoop for best Manchester chicken ever!) to discuss what he can offer. We even visited our wedding venue, as I was anxious about the lighting being in a dim industrial space. Here we shared ideas of how we can incorporate our surroundings, the old brick walls and even using coloured smoke bombs! We both felt at ease, Luke certainly knows how to use his surroundings and make each wedding unique. I feel I can throw our wedding day at Luke, give him full creative rein and he will produce imagery me and Danny will cherish for years to come.

Wedding photographer selected? Check!

One less thing to worry about! Now on to the dress..."

Lucy X


Some images from Lucy’s mood board are not her own, sources: 

Instagram, Luke Holroyd

Real Bride Diaries: Picking the Perfect Venue

I believe your wedding venue should show your personality as a couple. After all, it is your wedding day and you are both expressing how much you love one another, make sure it reflects who you are! It could be a sandy beach abroad, a grand manor home, or simply in your own back yard!

Last year my Sister, Naomi and my Brother, Charles married their partners.(Shout out to Naomi, Jay, Charles and Laura!). Their venues really show cased their personal style. My Sister, Naomi and Jay were married in a church with the ceremony performed by Jay’s Mum, who happens to be a vicar! The church was decorated with vintage bunting and shabby chic touches. Their wedding breakfast showcased my sister’s obsession with Disney (truly more than an obsession I’d say!), with each table assigned a Disney theme. From the Little Mermaid with the table covered in shells, to Aladdin decorated with genie style lamps. Even their wedding cake had a touch of Disney! A crafty touch!

My Brother, Charles and Laura married in a Church close to their families with their wedding breakfast held in a Cheshire manor home. The Manor home was surrounded with bright flowers adorned in sunshine through out the whole day. Not forgetting the sheep next door! Their decorations were simple and classy, with a defined colour palate of turquoise. The party then made its way over to an outdoor barn, and the dancing certainly never stopped (especially with my requests for Journey and Bon Jovi).

Both different locations, but non the less a perfect day for each couple! When it came to choosing my own wedding venue, I knew what I wanted from the day Danny proposed. I love the industrial look, especially since Danny and I currently live in an old textile factory. (I am slightly obsessed with wooden beams and brick walls). I wanted the venue to stay in Manchester, as this is Danny’s home town and it is an ideal location for both families travelling to the city. With a low budget in mind, and being surrounded by hotels offering a typical wedding service, I felt stuck- could there be my ideal venue in Manchester? The Castelfield Rooms offered a location with perfect outdoor areas for shoots and fireworks, but I felt inside the venue was too modern. It needed some industrial injection and less white walls. To some this could be the perfect blank canvas to decorate!

Countless hotels offered combined deals, but I felt they didn’t suit our personality. I wanted something custom made to us, unique, not something they have already offered to hundreds of couples before us. I wanted an old abandoned warehouse, a location I can decorate with fairylights, candles and bunting, but this was harder to find than I thought! I gave up on my search for while to re-think our options.

A few weeks later, by chance I came across Victoria Warehouse, a venue known for their music events. They have recently built a venue/ hotel next door for weddings and other occasions. I immediately booked a viewing and as soon as we saw the venue we both knew this was exactly what we were after. (Even sat in the reception waiting to meet the wedding director, I knew this was the place). The look was perfect, brick walls, high beams, dim lighting, this is exactly how I pictured our big day! (Plus they allow Wilson, our little pug!)

Despite being the only venue we saw in person, we booked it straight away. I couldn’t help it! They knew exactly what we were after and I felt at ease.

If you already have an idea of your perfect venue but struggle to find it, don’t give up hope, have a rest and start again. You will always find a venue with a characteristic you love just as much as your husband/ bride to be! Remember to show your personality, this is your big day you can be as big and bold or as traditional as your imagination takes you. Make it a day to remember!

Lucy X