I really didn’t know what to expect before my first appointment, it was all so new and exciting! I had a few ideas of what I would like in terms of style, but I didn’t have an exact dress in mind. I had obviously watched programs on TV such as ‘Don’t Tell the Bride’ and had seen girls trying dresses on and getting very emotional reactions from family and friends so I thought I might need the tissues at some point.
I first visited Y.A.P at their former boutique and for me I loved the intimate feel of it. The staff made me and my bridesmaids feel very welcome without being in our faces, they somehow were able to judge perfectly the level of service we wanted. I had the great pleasure of having worked with the gorgeous Abbie (Jo’s daughter) who had informed me that her Mum stocked a designer I had been looking at, but regardless of this I had visited other boutiques where I hadn’t been made to feel half as comfortable!
I knew I wanted sleeves! Tony always said that if we ever went on ‘Don’t Tell the Bride’ he would know to definitely get a dress with sleeves! I also knew that a fishtail style and anything tight fitting would not be good for my body shape - at a size 14 on top and size 16 on the bottom. I also knew that I wanted some lace in the dress but wasn’t sure if I wanted a full lace dress or not.
Danni - my bridal stylist was perfect! Not only did my consultation give me 5 minutes to catch my breath and relax a little, it also gave Danni the chance to work her magic and get a feel for what I wanted from not just my dress but also my wedding day! She really listened to me and came up with some fabulous suggestions…..the first one actually being “the one”!! As soon as I described my Pride and Prejudice dream at Chatsworth House in Derbyshire you could see the light bulb turning on in her head!!
I really could not have asked for any more! I felt looked after and as if I was the teams only priority when I know that they obviously had many other brides. The alteration service offered by Anne was exemplary and I knew that she would make my dress perfect!! She also produced the most wonderful headpiece from the one my Mum had wore on her wedding day. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect and sentimental accessory for my wedding outfit, everyone commented on how beautiful it was!
To be honest finding the perfect dress for me was a lot about how comfortable I felt in it! When I tried my dress on it just felt right! I could have been wearing my usual skinny jeans and a t-shirt, it just felt like “me”! I didn’t feel out done by the dress either, which for a big dress was surprising! I was very much wearing the dress rather than the dress wearing me! The biggest surprise was how light the dress was considering all the material in the skirt, well that and the fact it didn’t have sleeves!!!
I recently saw Abbie (Jo's Daughter) whilst shopping and I told her I was sad that I had no more reason to visit the Y.A.P team for my gown!! (Although I’m spreading the love through my bridesmaids and friends who are becoming beautiful Y.A.P brides too!) Getting a wedding dress for me was a bit daunting but everyone at Y.A.P made the whole process a pleasure…..I wish I could do it all again in the new boutique! I’ll just have to persuade Tony to renew our vows in 10 years! So taking that into consideration I would say the overall experience was first class!
I had a bit of a cinderella issue with my shoes! As I previously mentioned I used to work at New Look with Jo’s daughter Abbie and when I left I bought a pair of wide fit shoes which were every bit wedding, they were pretty much perfect. Unfortunately whilst moving house I found myself with only 1 shoe, I couldn’t find the other one anywhere! So I was back to square one, my second pair I bought were navy Jenny Packham and I loved them but the two pairs I ordered had faults so I gave up on that one, then I tried a gold Kurt Geiger pair which I decided I panic bought! I finally found the perfect navy pair from Kurt Geiger called “Bea”, which is Tony’s nickname for me (I think sometimes things are meant to be!!....and as a side note 2 weeks after the wedding I found that other shoe right at the back of the wardrobe!!) Tony had mentioned once in a conversation that he wasn’t keen on veils and with my dress having such gorgeous back detail I didn’t want to hide it so instead I went for a headpiece which the very talented Anne made for me out of my Mum’s wedding day crown. She did such a fabulous job and it made it so special and unique to me! I found my wedding earrings in an antique shop on the Shambles in York, I loved the fact that they weren’t high street and I like to think that they may even have been worn by another bride somewhere else in history!
Bearing in mind I happened to pick the hottest day in the UK this year (33 degrees!) for my wedding day the first word I would say was HOT!! In all seriousness though I felt elegant, beautiful and ready to marry the man I love which is exactly how every bride should feel on her wedding day!! I just wish it was acceptable to wear it more often! I think Y.A.P should organise a charity ball so all us Y.A.P brides can wear our dresses again and raise some money at the same time!!
I had my wedding and reception at Chatsworth House in Derbyshire which is home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire and is 5 minutes from my family home. My Dad is a part-time guide in the house and so it was all very personal to me. As a girl I fell in love with Pride and Prejudice and as Jane Austen had based Mr Darcy’s house Pemberley on Chatsworth it couldn’t have been more perfect! My husband Tony wasn’t keen on the idea of a massive event and doesn’t like being centre of attention so I always wanted the day to be enjoyable for him. I also wanted to have good food which was a bit different to the norm and I think we managed that without creating a menu that wouldn’t be enjoyed by the majority. Finally I wanted all the important people in our lives to share it with us! All in all I couldn’t have asked for it to go any better!!!!
I had Navy bridesmaids dresses and the boys had grey suits with navy and cream polka dot ties! I went for quite a classic theme with pale pink, cream and pale blue flowers. The Chatsworth garden team did a fabulous job with our flowers and even with the heat they look amazing! My bouquet lasted nearly a week and with the hidden mint it also smelt unreal!!
I had a wonderful husband and wife team of photographers based in Sheffield called Shoot Lifestyle Photography (http://www.shoot-lifestyle.co.uk/). Jo and Simon put both Tony and I at ease and blended into the background without missing any of the little details of the day! There were occasions where I didn’t even notice them there and that showed them for the professionals that they are! They did a blog post of our day which can be seen on their website (http://www.shootphotography.info/page/15/). The Chatsworth Garden Team produced our flowers and they were unbelievable! I absolutely loved them and they kept to well! We had the wonderful and national award winning DJ Bliss Wedding DJ (http://blissweddingdj.com/), Dave was fantastic playing all the requests and even bringing his camera along for the night time!! My tables and seating areas were dressed by the very talented Gemma at Rosy Apple Creations (http://www.rosyapplecreations.co.uk/) who does both wedding planning and styling. She was so helpful and made all the ideas in my head come to life perfectly on the day!!
What a dreamy day to feature on our beautiful bride Becki... Thank you for sharing your experience with us and a big thank you to Jo and Simon from Shoot Lifestyle Photography for these gorgoues images xxx