One of the things we love best at Limelight, is spending time with our brides and hearing all about their wedding plans. It’s so exciting that wedding ceremonies can now be completely personalised to reflect the passions of the bride and groom … and some of our brides truly amaze us with their spirit of adventure

Our brides love to ride horses, bucking broncos and motor bikes on their wedding day.

They ski down mountains, drive round golf courses and run with rugby balls and they do it style!

Click the link below to view the video of Kate skiing down the slopes after her mountain top wedding ceremony

https://www.facebook.com/katie.bedford.37/videos/10158025074556980/?t=2

Becca rides a bucking bronco in her wedding dress in the link below!

https://www.facebook.com/limelightoccasions/videos/vb.177479268972314/1459087237478171/?type=2&theater

And there is there is no playing it safe with the bridal gown – Limelight brides choose wedding dresses that truly express who they are and their stunning pictures amaze and delight us.

A huge train on my dress? Cut it off? Bustle it up? Absolutely not! The dress is part of the adventure – I’ll hitch it up on the bike – hook it over the wrist with the ski pole – spread it out over the horse

A love of life, as well as each other, shines through these wedding pictures.

The wedding day is just the beginning…we wish all our couples a lifetime of love, laughter and the most amazing adventures together xxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

When Alexandra entered Velvet, a bar in Wakefield, and first set eyes on Luke, the thing  that struck her most about him was how good looking and manly he was. It was love at first sight and she knew immediately that she wanted him to notice her.

We asked our beautiful Limelight bride to share the story of their romantic family wedding with us. These stunning photos were taken by Lauren Twigg.

How did Luke propose?

He surprised me by flying out and joining us in Tenerife on a family holiday with my Mum and Grandad. He then took me up Mount Teidi and proposed to me there.

What was it about your venue,Waterton Park Hotel, that made you choose it for your wedding day?

It gave me butterflies from the moment we pulled up to the venue. The moat made me feel like princess.

What was the best bit about your hen do?

Just being with all my favourite ladies drinking fizz, cocktails, laughing and chilling in our giant bath/pool.

Tell us a little bit about how you prepared for your wedding – which things were the most important to you?

Gifts for our wedding party were really important to me and making my Grandma and Dad, who are no longer with us, part of our special day. I wanted the wedding to represent me and Luke through and through. 

You looked amazing on your wedding day. What were you looking for when you set out to find your wedding dress? How did you know it was THE ONE?

Originally I thought I wanted something quite plain, stiff fabric, pockets, definitely not strapless, very Audrey Hepburn. My beautiful dress, Paradis by Ian Stuart, was the wild card and, theoretically everything I didn’t want… but yet so so me. I knew the minute I looked in the mirror that it was for me. It made me feel so beautiful. 

If you had to choose three favourite memories of the day which would they be and why?

My mum dressing me and my brother entering the room. We have always been the three musketeers and being with them and seeing their reactions fills my heart with joy even now thinking about it.

Seeing luke for the first time, he looked so nervous and so handsome the whole ceremony was beautiful and I never stopped smiling.

After the wedding breakfast I went into the bridal suite with 8 of my favourite ladies with two bottles of champagne and they helped me get ready for the night do. I loved every minute of it. 

Were there any unexpected surprises that made you laugh on your wedding day?

In Luke’s speech, he started off by giving my brother a gift which was an adopted camel. When Luke asked Joe for my hand in marriage Joe had said he was offered 12 camels for me when I was younger. He said he would now accept 2, he even brought it up in his own speech saying that the marriage wasn’t official until he got that. It was so funny as we were all in shock!

Which song did you choose for your first dance as a married couple and why?

John legend all of me, it has always been our song and the lyrics are so beautiful. Luke cried through most of the song…

How did you chose your honeymoon destination?

We are doing an American adventure with our little boy, taking him to Disney 

What advice would you give new brides to be who are planning their wedding?

Don’t dwell on the minor details and everything will come together. Take time on your wedding day to reflect on everything around you, watch the people you love, kiss your husband lots, drink lots of water, eat your meal, drink lots of fizz and dance, dance, dance.

For once lap up all the compliments – you will never have another day like it and it goes so quick.

Hire a videographer so you can remember and watch your day over and over again. I have watched ours every week since we married!

We wish Mr and Mrs Norbury a lifetime of happiness and laughter. With  love and thanks from everyone at Limelight xxx

We absolutely love it when our brides come back to visit Limelight after their big day; and it was especially nice to meet Rebecca’s husband, Ian, when the newly weds came to put their love lock on our Lockwood Bridge recently. We all had a fabulous time, over coffee, looking at photos and videos and hearing about this lovely couple’s inspirational wedding in Santa Barbara USA. We were blown away by it all and thrilled when Rebecca and Ian gave us permission to share their story with you.

What is so lovely about this wonderful wedding is the way it reflects Rebecca and Ian’s unique sense of style and fun. They shared, with those closest to them, an amazing, cultural journey to the places that they love, which culminated in a beautiful and very personal ceremony with celebrations that perfectly express who they are as a couple.

And so the story begins…

Rebecca, how Did you first meet Ian?

Ian and I met through work. We’re actually a bit of a cliché as, although we  didn’t become romantically involved until long after we no longer worked together, we did first meet when I successfully applied for the role of PA to the new Managing Director who turned out to be Ian. I found Ian to be a great boss and we worked well and successfully as a team for about 4 years running the European office of an American Credit Card company until we were both  made redundant when the business was purchased by another large financial services company. 

What was the first thing you noticed about him?

I first met Ian when he arrived at our offices as the new MD. Ian turned up and the first thing I noticed was his long hair and untucked shirt and jeans. He gave a little speech about how much fun we were all going to have together and I must admit, initially, I was a little worried about having this ‘wanna be’ surfer dude as the new boss man!

Was it love at first sight?

It wasn’t love at first sight at all. In fact I never thought about Ian in that way when I worked for him (although Ian may tell you that he believes that would have been completely impossible for any woman). It was a few years after we went our separate ways that Ian and I first broke the ice romantically. Ian confessed first that he had feelings for me and initially I was pretty shocked. He had been my boss and was quite a few years older. That said, I had always loved working with Ian, I knew him well and knew he cared about people. I also knew that together we had accomplished many great things in the work environment, so the idea of becoming partners in life seemed like (despite the challenges and the many obstacles we had to overcome) it may just work. The first kiss was certainly weird…but I soon got over it!

How Did Ian Propose?

Ian proposed to me when we were in New York after we had been together for two and a bit years . We had met initially because we both worked for GE. We were in New York as part of an East Coast holiday and Ian took me to a cocktail bar at the ‘Top of the Rock’ – the huge Rockefeller building which was the GE HQ from 1988 to 2015. I had no idea he was planning to propose and so when he wanted to go out on the terrace, where we couldn’t take our drinks, I was panicked (being a Yorkshire girl) that someone may steal our not so cheap drinks while we were out there. Little did I know the waitresses were  putting some champagne on ice for us as Ian had told them of his plans to propose!! He proposed down on one knee on the terrace, on the 65th floor of the building which was the HQ of the company where we first met – how apt!

What was the best bit about your hen do?

The hen do was fabulous but the best bit was the number of people that celebrated with me. We booked the Teppanyaki for dinner and the Wet Spot in Leeds which is a burlesque show as the after dinner entertainment. I can understand that some people may be a little nervous about the prospect of a burlesque show but it was all done in best possible taste (almost) and none of the guests were asked to take part in any audience participation. All of the hens put a lot of thought into the dress code and everyone looked fabulous.

And the Stag Do?

What was it about Santa Barbara and your venue that made you choose it for your wedding day?

We didn’t actually see either of the venues (Bluffs or Tavern) in Santa Barbara until the day before our wedding and at that point only Ian saw them; I didn’t see them until the day of the wedding…pretty scary eh? Nah it was a breeze. We had chosen Santa Barbara as we completed the obligatory Californian road trip in the early part of our relationship. We arrived one evening and stood by the rooftop pool of the hotel and saw the sun set over the mountains in the distance and thought it was so beautiful that we made a vow there and then that if we ever got married we would do it in this beautiful town.

Image at Winecountry.com https://www.winecountry.com/regions/santa-barbara-county/santa-barbara/

We saw the Bluffs on the website of the elopement company that helped us, ‘Santa Barbara Elopement’ and the Cold Spring Tavern we found on YouTube.

As we were wanting a western themed wedding, the Tavern, as an old stagecoach inn way up in the mountains, was perfect and the Bluffs were free so helped on the budget front as well as being…well on the side of a cliff in a nature reserve overlooking the Pacific Ocean…just how bad could it be?

Tell us a little bit about how you prepared for your wedding – the themes and which things were the most important to you?

Ian and I are big fans of modern country music and after we had decided to do the wedding in Santa Barbara we thought why not go the whole hog and do a country themed wedding?

I knew straight away that I wanted to wear cowboy boots with the dress, the colour scheme was easy – red white and blue the colour of both the Union Jack and the Stars and Stripes and everything else seemed to stem from there.

Music is extremely important to both of us, especially to Ian and we spent a long time choosing the music for the ceremony and the band that would play in the evening. The result was fantastic…an acoustic version of Sweet Child O’ Mine in the Californian sun followed by a ho down with a local band called the Dusty Jugz in the evening could not have been more perfect. 

The way our guests dressed was also important, we loved it and in the end…so did they.

We asked them to follow, if they could, the red, white and blue theme and to keep it country so we have lots of hats and boots.

We signed up for line dancing classes and decided to do our first dance as a line dance to a modern country song called Sober by Little Big Town. We were very conscious of the fact that America is not the cheapest place to get to, so we wanted to make the event as special and memorable for everyone that was able to come and be part of our big day.

You looked amazing on your wedding day. What were you looking for when you set out to find your wedding dress? How did you know it was THE ONE?

Initially, when looking for the dress, I knew I wanted a fitted dress but thought I may have one with sleeves and was looking at a dress that rose up at the front to show off my cowboy boots. I did find a dress that did exactly that and thought this was the one until I went to Limelight. I had met Sue at a sample sale and had already booked an appointment at Limelight for the following week as my sister in law and one of my bridesmaids had got their perfect dress there. Sue was amazing from the moment we met. I tried a couple of the sample dresses on in a makeshift changing room that had been set up at the site of the sale and she made me feel special from the moment I met her. I told her about the dress I had fallen for and my upcoming appointment. Sue arranged to make sure she had my preferred dress in stock for my appointment as well as other styles she thought I might like.

Sue spent more time with me than the allotted appointment time and insisted I try on as many dresses as I liked until I felt comfortable with my decision. One of the dresses Sue had chosen for me ended up trumping the previous front runner and I was able to be sure it was the one because Sue had got the other dress ready for me to try it alongside the new winner.

If you had to choose three favourite memories of the day which would they be and why?

I cannot possibly choose 3 favourite memories as there were so many! I would say my Dad’s speech was just perfect. He is not used to public speaking and not one that enjoys a lot of attention but his speech was perfectly delivered and full of love and he made me so proud to be his daughter.

The memory of all of our special friends and family who were able to make the long trip across the pond to be there with us will stay with me forever. Many of them had never been to America before or on such a long haul flight so I will be forever grateful of the efforts they made to make the day so special for us.

The final favourite memory for me would be seeing Ian waiting for me at the edge of the Bluffs. I was very nervous on the day and just wanted to be married to Ian.

My favourite favourite memory however was the moment Judge Brian Hill pronounced us husband and wife.

If you were to ask Ian however, he would obviously say seeing me for the first time in the dress, but also he would point to all of the Americans who spent hours on the phone with him and crossed many many emails prior to us arriving, who we would now consider friends, who really helped in all sorts of ways to make the day so special.

Were there any unexpected surprises that made you laugh or cry on your wedding day?

Ian had gone to such great lengths to try and make me cry but to no avail. As I was stuck in the hotel room from 10am on the day of the wedding getting beautified along with my mum and the bridesmaids, Ian had arranged on the day for me to have a surprise present every hour until we had to leave for the ceremony which was a very romantic surprise – this was the first of 3. The second surprise was when Ian played a recording of my Grandad he had done while I was away on my hen holiday. That almost tipped me over the edge.

The final surprise was when he got up on the stage at the Tavern and sang me a country song with the words changed to make it special for us both.

I laughed the whole way through the event after the serious bit of the wedding as I was so very happy.

What music did you choose for your wedding and first dance – and why are those pieces special to you both?

Our musical tastes are very eclectic. You already know about the modern county music, but rock music is also very important to us. We chose 3 songs for the ceremony that were stripped back acoustic versions of the originals and Ian spent a long time searching for the right people and finally settled on a duo from down the road in L.A. My procession song was Truly Madly Deeply by Savage Garden the words fitted so well. In the middle they played Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns n’ Roses, simply because we both love it and the riff is so instantly recognizable and they finished with I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing by Aerosmith because well it just doesn’t get any more romantic than that! Then to the Country bit…we had the Dusty Jugz of course and some line dancing, but the first dance was a song most people will never have heard of. One of the reasons that we love country is that the bands are huge in the US and then over here hardly anyone knows who they are. This particular band we both fell in love with and then we heard ‘the song’ that lyrically we knew straight away just had to be our first dance.

The band is called Little Big Town. We met them recently at their gig in Manchester, told them the story, which they promptly announced on stage when they played the song. The song is called ‘Sober,’ look them up on the link below, listen to the lyrics then you will understand why. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2gK1mLbJKE

After your amazing adventures in the USA…

you held fantastic party back here in the UK – can you tell us a little bit about it?

The party back in the UK was held for all of those that were unable to attend the US do. We wanted to try and make the UK day as special as the one in the States for all of our friends and family. The venue was The Yorkshire Heart Vineyard and Brewery at Nun Monkton in York and those that know me well, will understand that this was perfect for me and my love of beer. We had a marquee which we dressed with Union Jack and Stars and Stripes bunting, the table centre pieces were cowboy boots filled with red, white and blue flowers, we had a couple of big screens displaying a slideshow of pictures from the hen do, stag do and wedding, uplighters in red white and blue, an American airstream trailer serving good ole’ southern food from Smokin Blues, who are often found at York and Malton food festivals, our line dancing instructor and a mechanical bull for good measure.

Rebecca is truly fearless!

To see our beautiful bride riding a bucking bronco in her wedding dress click  the link below…

https://www.facebook.com/limelightoccasions/videos/vb.177479268972314/1459087237478171/?type=2&theater

We got a cake from Costco and iced it ourselves with the American flag and Ian brought along his Mustang and our friends brought their Harley Davidson for a photo opportunity for the bride and groom. We booked a band from Wakefield  – The Snapp –  and Ian’s band he had put together with colleagues from work performed too.

Together, you and Ian created a truly inspirational wedding…what advice would you give to new brides-to- be who are just beginning to plan their special day?

The best advice I can give is make the day about you. The more it demonstrates your personalities and your likes, the more special your day will be. It is your day and you should make it about the two of you. Try not to stress about others too much, they will be happy if you are happy. Finally, everyone said it to me, but you don’t realise until after the day – make the most of every minute you can in the run up but especially on the day itself. The time disappears and before you know it – it’s gone. If you can stretch the budget, try and get a video of the day so you can relive it afterwards – especially of the night do and the casual moments where everyone is having a ball and is involved. Capture all of your guests as they are a massive part of your memories!

Rebecca and Ian – we wish you a lifetime of love and laughter – thank you for sharing your amazing memories with us …

With lots of love from Limelight

xxx

Wedding Photographer Kiel Rucker, Santa Barbara, California.

 

 

When Jo met Ben at Shelley College, the first thing she noticed about him was his good looks and sense of humour. We asked our beautiful Limelight bride to tell us about their wonderful wedding day at The Yorkshire Sculpture Park captured in these amazing photos by Milly Fuller.


How did Ben propose?

On the day we moved into our house, he got the keys early, decorated the living room with flowers & balloons, took the keys back to the estate agents so that we could ‘collect them together’. I went into the living room first, and asked if Ben had paid extra for the estate agents to decorate for us, I didn’t have a clue what he was talking about when he said ‘You haven’t read it have you?’, read what? I looked back over at the decorations and read the wall hanging with the words ‘Will you marry me?’  When I looked back at Ben, he was down on one knee! It was a total surprise! 
 


What was it about your venue that made you choose it for your wedding day?


The beautiful scenery sold it to us before we’d even seen the reception area, we like to go on long walks in the countryside so felt it reflected us a little bit as well. The reception area was modern, and a blank canvas to work with in terms of decorations as we hadn’t settled on a colour scheme or anything at the time. We wanted a more relaxed, slightly less formal day and the Sculpture park provided that, it was perfect for us.



What was the best bit about your hen do?

Having fun with my best friend, all of the ladies in my family and Ben’s family, and in the middle of wedding planning it’s nice to relax and have a laugh.


Tell us a little bit about how you prepared for your wedding – which things were the most important to you?


All of the way through the 9-10 months planning the wedding, both me and Ben said, it’s about getting married, which seems obvious but we wanted that to be our main focus. We didn’t want to get too bogged down/stressed about the smaller details, we did still pay attention to detail and the personal touches etc, but tried to take the attitude that once you’re married and have all of your family and friends to celebrate with, nothing else really matters. I think this helped to keep perspective with the inevitable bumps along the wedding planning way.
 For me personally, having my mum there to help me chose my wedding dress was hugely important, it’s a big milestone and I felt so lucky to have my mum by side to support me. Being able to invite Ben’s mum to one of my later fittings (when my dress was almost perfect) was really nice as well.

You looked amazing on your wedding day. What were you looking for when you set out to find your wedding dress?


A slim fitting, fishtail/mermaid, lace dress, with buttons down the back, almost the polar opposite of the princess dress I eventually chose! Although the only thing I was certain about, was the buttons!

If you had to choose three favourite memories of the day which would they be and why?


It’s really difficult to chose just 3! If I had to chose, I would probably say, saying our vows, we did a landrover tour to take our ‘posey’ wedding album photos and after that we just had a few minutes alone at front of the venue looking out across the hills just to take it in which was so nice, and finally rejoining our guests for the speeches. The most emotional day ever!

Were there any unexpected surprises that made you laugh on your wedding day?


I left a little pocket watch in Ben’s waistcoat as a surprise hoping that he’d find it as he got dressed, but he didn’t notice it was in there until his step-mum gave hive a hint! (I  told her beforehand just in case) just a token gift/keepsake, but a way of communicating on the morning of the wedding without actually speaking to each other!



How did you choose your honeymoon destination?

Ben chose a lovely hotel in the Lake district, super relaxing and just what we needed, quality time together after a crazy week!

What advice would you give new brides to be who are planning their wedding?

Practical advice: Get a good photographer! A picture speaks a thousand words and once the day is over they’ll mean everything to you, they also tell stories of things that happened while you weren’t looking, or busy greeting guests etc. Also, work with suppliers that you trust, it will reduce your stress levels by a thousand times!

Try not to sweat the small stuff, on the day of the wedding you wont care what colour napkins are on the tables, the overwhelming feeling (as cheesey as it is) is the love and happiness and being able there to share your special day. You won’t look back and think I wish I’d put more sprinkles on the tables, you look back on the support from your parents and bridesmaids, the way that you chose to spend the morning, that look from your sister before you step into church, the best man’s reassuring pat on the groom’s back while they’re stood at the altar, the little wobble during your vows and all of the small moments with the people that you love the most, in the middle of a crazy, amazing day.

Most importantly, enjoy yourself! On the day, everything that you have so carefully planned will fall into place, and it goes really really fast! Remind yourself to pause, take a breath and soak it up!

Congratulations Jo and Ben!

Our very best wishes

Claire and all the Limelight team xxx

Cake from Cakes by Michelle. Hair and makeup by Bow and Blush

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All brides have one very special thing in common with one another, and that is, of course, love. Ok, it may sound a tad trite, but, I’m not just gushing – it is simply an undeniable truth.

Every year hundreds of brides-to-be bring their parents, grandparents, siblings, best friends and future in-laws through our doors because, somewhere along the way, they have found the person they want to spend the rest of their lives with. However, I have come to see, this is where the similarities end. How our brides choose to celebrate their special day, from the gown they wear, the venue in which they exchange their vows, the music they dance to and the food they share, is wonderfully unique. With every wedding comes symbolism, special touches and nods to cultural and familial tradition; throw in an element of good old fashioned fun, and you have a spectacular celebrations of, yes you guessed it, love.

Our stunningly beautiful bride Theresa’s wedding day, included all of the above and more. Once I had seen the entrancing photos of this inspirational day, I absolutely had to find out more…

 

Once Upon a Time How did you and your new husband, Michael meet?

Having always lived in Leeds and knowing the same set of friends, strangely we had never met. Then in June 2011 for a mutual friend’s birthday (our bridesmaid) I went to celebrate with her at Fazenda Steakhouse and Mike had come along for all you can eat meat!

Love at First Sight? What was the first thing you noticed about him?

 He was very obliging, taking photographs for me and maintained that I owed him a drink so that he would have reason to talk to me again! We chatted a lot that night, kept in touch and hit it off quite instantly. We enjoyed each other’s company and officially became a couple from August 2011. So whilst it never really is instant, it didn’t take us too long!

The Proposal How did he propose?

It was my birthday in December 2014 and Mike took me to the Cow and Calf Pub in Ilkley. We rushed in from the cold, to have some lunch and a drink but were told they were fully booked. I asked Mike if he had booked. He said yes, so I asked him to check again as surely they would have our booking. Mike asked again and they said that they didn’t and suggested we went for a walk and come back as they could get a table ready for us. Go for a walk? It’s freezing! YOU go for a walk, I thought. We then drove down into Ilkley. Ah, I said, let’s go to Betty’s! We can sit there and have a hot drink! Mike just agreed, I guess to keep me quiet, but not before taking me to where we had our first date by the river. He went to get some bread as he did five years ago so we could feed the ducks again. We then walked to the bridge where we had our first kiss. With a few people walking by, he went down on one knee and proposed to me! I did cry a few tears and then of course said yes! Mike knew that I wouldn’t want to walk in the cold and it wouldn’t have made sense that he would want to go for a walk as it’s not like him. This being the case he had prepared this plan in advance. We went back to the Cow and Calf pub where they greeted and congratulated us! They had our table ready. It was by the fireplace with the Christmas decorations and champagne at the ready.

 

The Venue What was it about your venue that made you choose it for your wedding day?

The stunningly modern ballroom with overlooking upper balconied floor. It has an amazing fireplace feature, with beautiful lighting, state of the art sound and DJ system and picturesque views. We loved the surrounding woodland and gardens. There is a beautiful outdoor sandstone gazebo, for which we were very lucky to have exchanged our vows and become married there.

 Girls Just Want to Have Fun What was the best bit about your hen do?

 Am I allowed to say the Butler in the Buff? Ok, I just did! Thanks girls! No seriously, we were very lucky as Mike went to Cancun with his friends, yes Cancun! And so as I wasn’t going to let him have all the fun, as well as a day of fun in Leeds with my friends, I went to Dubai with family and had an amazing time there. We went swimming with dolphins, had afternoon tea at the Burj Al Arab, went on a desert safari and I fell in love with the Burj Kalifa. I feel truly blessed and still am immensely taken aback by the kindness, help and generosity of my bridesmaids, friends and family.

The Preparation  Tell us a little bit about how you prepared for your wedding – which things were the most important to you?

The personal touches – Following our rose gold and blush theme, I really enjoyed creating our wedding programmes, personalised menus, table plan tree, table number frames, fingerprint tree, sweets & treats bar, Polaroid and photobooth guest book, self-made personalised hangers and handmade personalised children’s colouring books with colouring pencils. We had personalised chopsticks sets for our favours and we also bought gifts for our mums and the bridal party. We also created a rustic feel timeline video of us both growing up to show our guests which was very special to us.We were very lucky as we were so pleased with our amazing suppliers – Dresses and Accessories (Limelight Occasions), Venue (The Saddleworth Hotel), Photographer (Pixies in the Cellar), Videographer (Redseats), Florist and Venue Stylist (Pinterest: @Kellylouisefloralartistry); MUA (Anna Stephenson); Photobooth (Blissbooth), all for whom we had the privilege to meet and would unreservedly recommend.

The Dress You looked amazing on your wedding day. What were you looking for when you set out to find both your wedding dresses?

 I think it’s true that it never is quite the one you may have first imagined, but it’s so much fun trying them on until you know it’s the one for you! I went back to the one I set my heart on from the start – The Nova Scotia, by the truly amazing Ian Stuart. My mum and I fell in love with it instantly and despite initially seeking an ivory dress, it had to be in the honey colour! To this day, I still receive compliments on how beautiful the dress is and how it’s every girl’s dream to try on such beautiful dresses in a place like Limelight Occasions. You absolutely must see for yourself and you will know what I mean. They have great accessories too!I took a day off work, had my hair and make-up trial done and had my first dress fitting on their amazing runway. To feel amazing was an understatement. I could not have been happier with it and the experience that came with it. However, I couldn’t help but still admire all the other stunning dresses even though I had chosen mine! I felt like a kid at Disney Land. The team are fantastic and you are well looked after. Rita the seamstress is amazing. Just go with what she says! Limelight is a decision you will not regret! My mum also found her outfit from Limelight Occasions by John Charles and as she took to the runway too we had so much fun together! It certainly was a day to remember! 

Following Chinese tradition also, I chose an albeit more modern take on the traditional red dress which was handmade in Hong Kong. I love this dress too as it’s not every day that you would wear something so bold but red is lucky in Chinese culture and I felt very lucky indeed.

We loved the Chinese traditions of the groomsmen arriving before the wedding and the tea ceremony was obviously a very special and beautiful part of your day. Could you tell us a little bit more about these traditions?

The door games! This is a very fun, light hearted part of Chinese wedding tradition. The groom arrives with the guys at the bride’s family home where the bride is. The bridesmaids and other female friends or family on bride’s side will prevent them from entering and will begin the door games to test the groom’s worth as they are put to the test! Firstly greeted by florescent bras and lacy thongs flung from the upper window to the driveway for the guys to wear. It was hilarious when both the postman and binmen did their rounds! Next they had to drink various vodka shots which were flavoured sweet, sour, bitter and spicy.  This is to test the groom’s ability of being able to cope with what marriage may bring. Then they had to do various questionable yoga positions and forfeits such as waxing! No pain, no gain so they say! They were also tasked with passing a piece of seaweed from each person to the next using only their mouths! Then for the finale, they grouped up and did a rendition of “As long as you love me” by the Backstreet Boys in serenade of me! Haha, it was all good fun!The groom must also pay up, otherwise he won’t get to his bride! The groom and girls may do some lighthearted bartering for the amount of money accepted in order to let them pass. This value will contain the number 9, as the number represents ‘longevity’ in Chinese, therefore a lucky number for marriage.

The tea ceremony is where formal introductions are made in the joining of two families. It is symbolic and holds traditional significance and meaning.  We certainly wished to include this into our wedding day as it shows our gratitude and respect. It is arranged in a relaxed and respectful manner as we both kneeled in front of family members to serve them tea whilst addressing them by their title. The order of serving tea is important as it shows how we respect seniority. Our parents are served first, then our grandparents followed by uncles and aunts and elder siblings. Traditionally the groom’s family would also be first.The traditional tea is sweet, symbolising sweetness in the new union. Red dates are used for this purpose. Tea is the symbol of purity (as love is pure), stability (as love is faithful) and fertility (as it represents children a plenty!). The tea set is a meaningful keepsake of the wedding and can be used should a future daughter get married. 

After drinking the tea, the tea ceremony gifts for the bride and groom will be presented in the form of lucky red envelopes with money or gold jewellery which may feature the symbolic dragon with the pheonix. As newlyweds, it becomes a new custom for us to also give lucky red envelopes and it was a pleasure to give these to our family’s children on the day.The night before the wedding, we also had a family gathering in our respective family homes and carried out a hair combing ceremony for good luck.

The Main Event If you had to choose three favourite memories of the day which would they be and why?

 Firstly, being in the Rolls Royce Phantom with my mum who is so dear to me. She looked beautiful and it was so precious to share that special journey with her. Secondly, it would be seeing our family and friends. It is your guests who make the day so special and the emotion that comes with their warmth and best wishes. We will forever appreciate their kindness, generosity and efforts. Thirdly, the speeches from Mike and the best man left me in tears. I wasn’t prepared for how emotional it would be hearing these with all of our dearest family and friends around us. They both did a great job!

Were there any unexpected surprises that made you laugh on your wedding day?

Our first dance – So we had left no time to practice this but a mere minute the day before our wedding day, when we managed to do a few spins. So there we were on the dance floor, slow dancing to “Can’t help falling in Love” by Ingrid Michaelson, eyes locked, in each other’s embrace, pulling out a few of those ‘practiced’ spins, when the music changes! I muttered to Mike, “what’s going on? This is not our song!”. Either something had gone wrong, or worse, our guests now thought we had a dance routine prepared! Only the surprise was on me as the next thing I saw was a dinosaur! Our groomsman was dressed as a dinosaur alongside our best man who were now busting out some moves on the dance floor! Mike still straight faced. Soon I realised as he and what seemed like most of our guests suddenly jumped onto the dance floor into some serious dance mode! Clear now, it was the HARLEM SHAKE! =) Fear turned into sheer laughter! Complete madness and then it stopped. Straight back to original positions, complete calm but laughter as we continued to slow dance again to finish our song. Everyone had so much fun, what a memorable first dance, I absolutely loved it!

http://redseats.co.uk/theresa-mikes-saddleworth-hotel-wedding-video/ The Honeymoon How did you choose your honeymoon destination?

On searching for a Hen destination my cousin suggested Boracay, Philippines and whilst I thought it would be too far away for a Hen do it looked like the perfect paradise location for Mike and I to have our honeymoon and I was not wrong. It was our first relaxing beach holiday and we stayed in a tree top villa with a stunning sea view and sunsets at the Shangri-La. We explored the island, went snorkeling and had the most amazing private dining experience on the beach. It truly was a holiday of a lifetime.

Final Thought What advice would you give new brides to be who are planning their wedding?

Afterwards, you just want to relive all the fun and happiness of the day. Have a good photographer and videographer. Leave things in their hands and those of your bridal party. Enjoy each and every moment for it goes all too quickly. Persevere with those preparations as it is all worthwhile! Be happy in making your own choices and know that things may not go perfectly but that’s ok.