Today, we have a gorgeous city wedding at The Midland Hotel in Manchester. With photos by Sarah Maria Photography, the thing that attracted me to this wedding when it was submitted was the joy- from start to finish, this couple were beaming, and looked like they loved every moment of their lovely day. Sarah, from Sarah Maria Photography says: “From our first meeting at their home in Manchester to Heather’s Mum & Dad doing a surprise dance for the couple at the end of the night its been brilliant. I love it when brides make me a part of their wedding…

I know as a wedding photographer I am a part of the day by default but Heather  has shared idea’s and stories and we have chatted a long the way which when it comes to the big day I know exactly whats important to them. These two are total naturals when they are in front of the camera which makes my job EASY… The day itself was full of laughter and smiles and you can just see how much fun was had when you look through their pictures. It started off wet and miserable but it ended on an absolute high!!” Let’s hear from Heather to tell you a bit about the day and see all of Sarah’s beautiful photos.

“My best friend encouraged me to have a go at online dating. Steven had joined Tinder because his friend thought it was funny that it rhymed with his surname: ‘Pinder on Tinder’ was the concept. I saw him and thought ‘cute’. Plus we had a friend in common, so I swiped right! We went for our first date at Dukes 92 in Manchester and – due to my own poor decision making it wasn’t quite the romantic start to the love story you might hope for. I said I’d had a nice time but there was ‘no spark’. Little did I realise what was about to happen. A couple of weeks later I wondered if I’d made a mistake. He had seemed a lovely, genuine, good guy and that was probably where I’d gone wrong in the past. Cue date 2. Second thoughts – he was the loveliest person I’d ever been on a date with. There it began…”

The Proposal

“Two and a half years later, Steven got down on one knee at our little stone hut hideaway in Wales. We had the log fire burning, a bottle of wine open and as it was the weekend of bonfire night there were fireworks on the beach that we could watch through the trees a few miles away just after he popped the question. So romantic and couldn’t have been timed better!”

The Plans & The Venue

“We didn’t choose a theme as such. The colour scheme was subtle and natural. For us, the wedding was all about our friends and family having a happy day rather than paying too much attention to decorative details. We met in the city and have lived together in two Manchester city centre apartments so we are far more of the city-type than the countryside venue kind of couple. It’s far more ‘us’. We often walk past The Midland hotel and it is such a beautiful building we thought it was worth considering. We both fell in love with it when we were shown around by their wedding coordinator.”

The Outfits

“I always knew I wanted a full skirt and a train on my dress. When I went to look at styles, mine was one of the first dresses that I saw and I fell in love straight away. The off the shoulder neckline reminded me of being little and dancing around the living room singing my favourite Kylie Minogue songs with my tee shirt pulled over my shoulders 1980’s style. Happy times. I’ve always loved the off the shoulder look and think (and hope) it’s flattering too! I always have my hair down but it’s thin and flyaway, so for the wedding I really want it up and different to how it normally looks. Wedding planning leads people to Pinterest apparently… I became totally obsessed for a while! I saw a chignon bun with a sparkly hair accessory and veil combination that I loved. That was the one. Make up is very simple and natural. For Steven, we went suit shopping and one of the first ones he saw was the blue suit with natural waistcoat. We took a bridesmaid dress to match up colour and the whole suit shopping episode lasted about an hour. He was happy straight away. Men have it so easy!”

The Wedding Party

“My maid of honour was my best friend, Siobhan. We went to school, college and Law school together and worked together for a while too. We had regular Saturday nights in watching Take Me Out, eating Domino’s Pizzas, drinking wine and chatting about boys before we both met our fiancés. She is getting married soon too and I am maid of honour for her’s and Simon’s wedding in the summer. How exciting. My sister Sally has always been there for me and so she was an obvious choice for a bridesmaid. We have been through everything together and she has recently just moved back from New Zealand so I’m so happy she has been home I’m the run up to the wedding to help with all the arty stuff that I’m no good at. Ellie, another bridesmaid worked with me at my favourite ever job – the off licence. Selling wine came naturally to both of us as we are naturally enthusiastic about the subject..! We went to uni together too and have done at least a couple of holidays away together. Finally, Olivia is Steven’s 10 year old beautiful niece. She is more excited about the weather than anyone else! She is a sweetheart and will look gorgeous in her bridesmaid dress.”

The Details

“We went for classic and simple. Our cake was three tiers: red velvet, vanilla and coffee sponge. Yummy! Cake tasting has been a highlight of wedding planning! We had a DJ at the hotel and requested plenty of our favourite tunes – mostly ‘80’s and ‘90’s tunes that we know our friends will definitely dance to! For transport, we had a white taxi for Mum and the bridesmaids from hotel to church. Fun, cute and enough seats for everyone! My Dad and traveled in a 1956 Rolls Royce. Dad used to drive wedding cars so this was his choice more than mine. A beautiful car and I trusted his decision completely!”

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