Real Weddings

Martina Liana for a classic wedding at Lartington Hall – Katie & Nick

Alexis Forsyth

Newlyweds Katie and Nick dreamt of a romantic and stylish wedding, choosing the exquisite Lartington Hall in Barnard Castle for their big day back in July.

Pairing this captivating setting with a sublime palette of ash greens, peach, blue and blush tones – we’d say they nailed their theme to perfection.

There are lots of beautiful styling details to pore over – Lily Of The Valley blooms being just one of these – but we simply must talk about the bride’s chic, fit and flare style gown and THAT matching train and veil! This has got Instagram goals written all over it, with the train perfectly floating in the breeze.

Some of our other favourite touches from the day include champagne truffles as favours; not one, not two, but three live acts to entertain guests; a pizza party in the evening; and an alternative to the traditional photo booth – a magic mirror.

If Katie and Nick’s stunning choice of venue has your heart skipping a beat then be sure to make a note of Sunday 24th November 2019, when we will be hosting The Wedding Creatives, a luxury wedding show in partnership with UNVEILED at Lartington Hall, open 11am to 2pm, free entry. As well as providing the perfect opportunity to see this utterly beautiful venue first-hand and speak to its amazing team, there will be 25+ of the area’s top wedding suppliers in attendance to inspire every big day detail. You can pre-register here to attend.

With images by Helen Russell Photography


Katie says

: Nick proposed on 24th June 2018. We both love visiting new places and going out walking together. For a couple of weeks he had been asking me if we could visit Bamburgh in Northumberland. He suggested we go one Sunday as it was our first day off together for over two weeks. I had just finished night shift but the weather was gorgeous, and I was looking forward to finally having a relaxing day together. He picked a perfect spot and got down on one knee in the sand dunes, with a stunning view of Bamburgh Castle and the Northumberland coastline behind. Exactly a year later we visited the same spot, this time with our new rescue dog Hugo.


We were married on Wednesday 10th July 2019. We had both wanted an early summer wedding as it’s our favourite time of year. The venue boasts stunning grounds and we had always wanted to make use of outdoor space on our wedding day, so it was perfect to be there when the gorgeous gardens were out in full bloom.

Our wedding was held at Lartington Hall in Barnard Castle. The second we pulled up outside we knew it was the place we would be married. Everything about it was exactly as we had been looking for. The whole building is so exquisitely designed, with marbled flooring, bright open spaces, high ceilings but with original accents to the building to keep its original charm.

We were married in the stunning chapel which is adjoined to the building.
As we stayed exclusively for two nights, we spent the night before with close family and friends. And the morning of the wedding the girls and I made use of the gorgeous bridal suite to sip champagne and pamper ourselves ahead of the main event.

As they are primarily an exclusive wedding venue, they have everything down to the tiniest detail, absolutely perfected! We couldn’t have asked for a better team of people to spend our day with.


Instead of a set theme we just wanted the wedding to feel romantic and stylish. We already loved the style of the venue so we kept that sentiment but brought our own personal touch with pictures of us and our dog Hugo. Fortunately for us, we had beautiful sunshine so we were able to make use of the gorgeous gardens too and set up outdoor games to help everyone socialise and relax.

We didn’t have one set colour scheme. Instead we aimed to have lots of ash greens, peach, blue and blush tones in the flowers which would tie in with the wedding party. For the table and venue decorations we decided to keep it romantic and classic to tie in with the venue, with lots of gold accents.


I’m sure most brides say this, but I was just completely in love with my wedding dress! I knew I wanted a fit and flare style dress, but it was one of the stylits at Mia Sposa Bridal Boutique in Newcastle, that actually picked out my perfect dress. I remember looking at it thinking I’m not sure about this, but after trying it on, I never wanted to take it off!
My perfect dress was a Martina Liana design with a bespoke train and matching veil. The whole look was just exactly as I had imagined it.


Nick’s suit was one of the first things we bought for the wedding! He wore a three-piece suit from Hugo Boss. He couldn’t decide on which colour he was most fond of, but as I burst into tears seeing him in the grey suit for the first time – his mind was made up!

For the groomsmen we tried to keep their suits as close to Nick’s as possible. We found a perfect match at Slater Menswear and they each wore a tailored suit.


Our bridesmaids wore dresses from Dorothy Perkins. We had searched high and low for the ‘perfect dress’ and this one ticked all the boxes. It was flattering and comfortable for all the girls, with an elegant flow. Rich purple colours are my favourite and they enhanced the blush undertone of my dress perfectly.


I had the most amazing glam squad!
Our makeup artist was the super talented Emily Emmett. I can be quite particular about my makeup, but from my trial on the day of my hen do, I trusted her fully! We had a great time playing with colours and styles to make it perfect – she is just amazing to work with.
So many people have since commented how great our makeup looked!

Sam McPake at Eden Freelance Hairdressing worked wonders with all of our hairstyles. From mother and grandmother-of-the-bride to my own bridal hair – she was just brilliant. She listened to what everyone’s preferences were and worked wonders to have our hair perfect for the occasion. Nothing was too much trouble and she was a pleasure to have with us the morning of the wedding.


Helen Russell photographed our wedding day and we couldn’t recommend her enough! We had already met Helen and had seen her work as she had beautifully photographed both of Nick’s brothers’ weddings. So, we knew we had to have her for ours!

During our pre-wedding meeting and photo shoot Helen put us at ease instantly in front of the camera. This helped us out so much on the wedding day as the thought of being photographed can be quite daunting, but we were completely relaxed with her and I think this shows in our pictures.

Between listening to what we wanted from our pictures and sharing her advice we have images from our day that we will treasure always. She has picked out so many moments that are truly special.


Initially we weren’t set on having a videographer at our wedding. However we met One Digital Image at my bridesmaid Ellie’s wedding only a few months before and their work was so amazing it changed our minds completely!

Janet and Chris are a perfect duo and their service was second to none. They were so much fun to have around and again put everyone at ease.
Our first video was posted the night of our wedding! The quality and content of that first video is just so special and beautifully put together. We are eagerly awaiting our next one…


We came across The Enchanted Florist in Durham at a Brides Up North wedding show at Lartington Hall and I knew straight away they had do be part of our wedding! Julie and her daughter Chloe are just so genuinely lovely and beautiful people. I took my mam for our floral consultation and Julie was just so helpful with so many aspects of our wedding.
They ensured we had the perfect flowers and that they were perfectly tailored to us. Julie even managed to get Lily Of The Valley for the day especially for us, despite it being out of season. This meant so much as it’s a very sentimental flower for my family.

As soon as they brought the flowers up to me on the day of the wedding, I immediately burst into tears – they were just so beautiful!

All our table decor was also designed and provided by Julie, all of which looked simply stunning in the ballroom.

Everything was exactly as we had imagined and nothing was ever too much trouble for Julie and Chloe. They really did go the extra mile for us, and I loved working with them.


Each guest had a box of champagne truffles made at Lartington Hall as a favour (chocolates always go down well!).
As a personal little extra, each place setting had a personalised acrylic name setting that doubled up as a gift to take home.


We looked at so many cakes and found this really difficult to choose. In the end we bought a tiered cake from Marks and Spencer which was decorated with shimmering chocolate rings and flowers provided by our florist.
The finished look was so effective, and it went down a treat!


We had a fabulous day food tasting with our parents. One thing Lartington Hall praises itself for is the exquisite food, and it really is! We chose a beetroot and goats cheese starter as it’s one of my favourites and was perfect on a warm summer’s day.

Nick’s favourite was the braised Teesdale beef, which he picked as our main. This was a talking point for a lot of our guests who said it was the best beef dish they had ever had!

For the evening food we had a pizza party with cones of fries to accompany. The staff serving could barely make it out of the kitchen before the food was gone from their trays! Always a good sign!


Nick and I both love live music and so wanted this to feature heavily throughout the day.
Armstrong Quartet from AMV Live Music played live in the chapel for our ceremony. Their music was beautiful and at a special request played a song that my great grandparents danced to on their golden wedding anniversary.

During the reception, Not Just Jack played guitar and sang live. His song selection was great, getting everyone into the party spirit!

Our evening band, Livewire were outstanding! They learned our fist dance song Yellow as a special request and played it perfectly for us. From then on, the dance floor was full! They really knew how to keep the crowd happy and they ended the day on a real high.

We also hired a magic mirror for the evening from Capture that Moment. It was something a little different from a photobooth and gave full-length pictures where a group of people could fit in. The team were excellent and provided props, unlimited prints for guests and a guest book. They also emailed me a link to all of the pictures, so we have a copy to keep too!
It was so much fun, and we have some hilarious pictures of everyone having a great time.

Thanks to

Our venue was simply amazing from the day we first found it.
The service at Lartington was second to none and they literally took so much stress and anxiety away as I knew I could trust them to allow things to run smoothly.

Best bit

Aside from marrying my wonderful husband, I couldn’t pick a favourite part of the day. Everything from start to finish was just perfect! From spending the ultimate pamper morning with my bridesmaids, mam, auntie and grandma – to dancing the night away with all our nearest and dearest. It really was just the best day!


Three days after the wedding we jetted off to Las Vegas for three nights! This was a great way to start the honeymoon as we were still on a wedding high and ready to let our hair down. We were really lucky to have our hotel room upgraded so we had a stunning panoramic view over the Bellagio fountains and Las Vegas strip.

After Vegas we flew to Barbados for a bit of luxury and relaxation. We also celebrated my 30th birthday while there, making the trip extra special. We spent days out on boat trips swimming with turtles and exploring the island. One of the highlights of the holiday was visiting the famous Friday night Oistins Fish Fry. We had some amazing Caribbean dishes and danced the night away – fueled by rum punch!


My top tip for other Brides Up North would be, don’t get stressed and enjoy every moment! It is literally the quickest but best day of your life. Being surrounded by family and friends who are there to celebrate your happiness is so overwhelming and amazing. Make sure you sit back at some point and take in what a happy day it is and remember what is really important.

During the planning, we attended a few Brides Up North wedding shows at various venues, which we found helpful. It can all be very confusing trying to select suppliers as there are often so many to choose from, but we found that the Brides Up North events had a selection of reputable and reliable suppliers. Meeting suppliers and seeing their work first-hand was the best way for me to decide.

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