This gorgeous wedding starts with a heartaching-ly romantic proposal story leaving a huge lump in my throat, some serious brownie points have to go to groom Paul, and after a long engagement culminates in to a gorgeous vintage pastel wedding at Beeston Manor in Lancashire. Adding to the vintage vibes is bride Majella's gorgeous tea length wedding dress, carefully designed by Something Blue to include all the elements she loves. And not to be forgotten the bridesmaids in their polka dot 50s style dresses from Lindy Bop which are not only incredibly sweet, but also an absolute bargain at £25 each. Be sure to check out the all the DIY decor, dollies, beautiful blooms and more, all captured for your viewing pleasure by Ally M Photography.


Majella The Bride: Paul proposed very unexpectedly after I arrived home from a 12 hour shift at the hospital where I was working as a maternity support worker. Paul had been watching me walk up the street to time perfectly the playing of ‘our song’ The Kooks – See The Sun. The entire house was filled with candles a bottle of Bollinger was chilling and I was led into the front room where I would find the biggest, most beautiful bouquet of flowers. The card tucked into the flowers read ‘Will you marry me?’ As I turned round I found Paul down on one knee with a platinum round cut diamond ring. The wedding would take place 3 years and 2 months later just two weeks after I finished my degree and qualified as Midwife.


We chose Beeston Manor as the place to hold our ceremony and Doo. The restored 16th century sandstone barn is just full of character and with its magnificent gardens, views of rural Lancashire and rustic feel was the perfect setting for our magical day. The staff were fabulous and as a family run business they go out of their way to ensure the day runs seamlessly, nothing was too much trouble.

The Dress

Right from the very beginning I knew exactly what I wanted. It had to vintage it had to be tea length and it had to have sleeves. I considered finding a dress maker from the start but didn’t want to miss out on the excitement of visiting bridal shops and finally being able to try on a wedding dress. Many trips to various wedding dress shops proved to be fruitless and so it was decided, I would design my dress and have it made. The creation of my dream dress became a labour of love and after about 9 months and countless appointments picking specific lace, satin, buttons and tulle I finally had my very own dream dress to try on and it was absolutely perfect. I found My dress maker Lillian at a gorgeous little shop in Bolton – Something Blue. She had some excellent ideas and with the help of my aunty who was a seamstress herself we turned my vision into a reality. The dress was neck to calf lace. I had a satin trim neckline and satin buttons from wrist to elbow and satin buttons from neck to waist – absolutely stunning.

Head Dress

This was a toughie, and I debated for months between a fresh flower crown or a pastel coloured vintage hair piece eventually deciding on the flower crown. Looking back it was the perfect choice creating some beautiful timeless pictures and expertly contrasting against my dark hair.


Similarly with the shoes I was certain I wanted a gorgeous pop of blue colour on my feet to be a little different. Finding the perfect shoes was a nightmare and I trawled the internet looking for the perfect pastel blue shoes. Turns out the perfect shoe would make itself known 4 weeks before the big day when I randomly stumbled across the Rachael Simpson wedding shoes range. The shoes were wonderfully vintage and all importantly -Blue, they finished the look off perfectly.

Bridesmaids Dresses

I wanted the 50’s design of my dress to continue in the bridesmaids and I was delighted when I stumbled across the dresses on a 50’s inspired website – Lindy Bop. The dresses were an absolute bargain at £25 each. They were really flattering and perfect for dancing in. My aunty made the 6 petticoats to go underneath and even created a mini version of the dress for my gorgeous flowergirl.


Brown tweed was set from the very start to tie in with the vintage theme and would contrast perfectly with the blue bridesmaids dresses however, as Bolton isn’t the fashion capitol of the North finding a brown tweed suit would prove to be incredibly difficult to find. After months of yet more internet trawling we eventually found a shop that stocked exactly what we were looking for. The shop – Marc Darcy based in Preswich, Manchester had the perfect suit and after just 2 hours and various peaky blinder jokes later- courtesy of the sarcastic groomsmen we purchased our 8 brown tweed suits.

Colour Scheme

I never had a colour scheme in mind when I started planning the wedding but wasn’t keen on things being too matchy matchy. Ive never been one to conform and am well known for being quite eclectic. What I did know is that I wanted a mix of colours tied in with some rustic elements and burlap. The pastel colours we ended up with came together quite randomly but in my opinion worked perfectly. Ive always loved vintage and wanted the wedding to have a personal feel to it. This was achieved by taking many of the props we used from our very own home. The ladders we used for the table plan belonged to my late uncle who was a painter and decorator, they were old and rickety but with a good wash and a bit of TLC they worked perfectly. Once decorated with the fresh flowers and doilies picked up in charity shops. The sweet cart is something I did myself, it was a bargain at £15 from an old junk shop and again the jars were mostly from around the house. The guestbook was a big hit. From previous weddings I always found it a shame to have a beautiful guest book that rarely gets filled, I loved the idea of a polaroid guest book filled with pictures of our guests that we could look at years later. The task of polaroid snapping was enlisted to my best friend (Bridesmaid) who spent the entire evening with it round her neck. We were utterly delighted the next day to see that the book was packed full of pictures.


Since neither of us are big cake lovers we again opted for something a little different and decided on a cheese cake. The cheese was supplied by a cheese stall from our local market in Bolton.


We are big Oasis fans and loved the idea of having Oasis played on the day. We were delighted when we found the Manchester string quartet, a string quartet that turn Manchester music classics into beautiful classical songs. I walked down the aisle to Wonderwall and left to this Charming Man by The Smiths.


For the flowers I wanted to create a hand picked design and avoid anything too uniform and neat. We decided a hand tied bouquet for me and the bridesmaids would emulate this. I believe flowers should play centre stage at any wedding so we had them almost everywhere. The centre pieces where obviously floral and the orange crates where a bargain from Dunelm at £5 a crate which my wonderful florist sprayed a vintage distressed brown for me.


Our photographer was Bolton based Ally M Photography. Ally was recommended by a friend and from the very first meeting we were confident he would capture our day perfectly. As a fellow Boltonian we hit it off from the get go. He is so talented and made the whole day so relaxed and enjoyable. Both Ally & Lucy (his assistant/fiancée) have been invaluable with the whole wedding planning process, always on the other end of the phone with recommendation and supplier suggestions. We are eternally grateful for the memories they created for us. Thanks Ally & Lucy.
Lorna Shaw

Written by Lorna Shaw

Bespoke Dress: Something Blue | Bridal Shoes: Rachel Simpson | Bridesmaid Dresses: Lindy Bop | Tweed Suit: Marc Darcy | Venue: Beeston Manor

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