"It's a Love Story" - My wedding story with pics


I'm going to start from the beginning - the very beginning.
Back in 2011 I joined YAYW as some what of a wedding novice - preparing to plan the Biggest day of our lives. It quickly became an obsession, logging onto the forum to talk to fellow planners several times a day!
We got married in July 2013 and here I am still logging on to the forum everyday to read other peoples planning stories and wedding reports. I still find the whole wedding concept utterly fascinating and now I feel it is only fair (and about time!) that I share my wedding story with you all.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I can talk for England! Which also means I can write for England too.
As I go through my journey from planning to the Big Day I will try and keep to some sort of order, but I do apologise in advance if I start to jump back and forth - something I tend to do when telling a story!
I will be totally honest with you all about the highs and lows to planning a wedding and aim to give as much advice and tips as I possibly can.

Right! Let's get started........

My husband (still getting used to that) and I met on the 31st of July 2004.
I was 17 and he was 21.
It was a typical meeting, out on a night out with friends in town - we bumped into each other as we were making our way home at the end of the night.
Neither of us can totally remember how it happened but it did.

And the rest as they say is history...............


We got engaged on the 31st July 2007 (are you seeing a theme here) I guess I knew it was coming as we had talked about it and even picked out the ring together.

I know this isn't the "done" thing but Mr B really wanted to make sure I had a ring I loved - I was going to be wearing it forever! We went to a jewellers in town and I picked a few I liked and so did he, I tried them all on and eventually found one we agreed on - and I couldn't be happier.

Gorgeous fiancé - Gorgeous Ring...

2007 was also the year I turned 21 and I honestly thought Mr B would be proposing then, so it came as a surprise when on the morning of July 31st he appeared at my bedside on one knee and asked me to be his wife!
Not the most romantic proposal story you will have heard but it was very us and very special, it just wouldn't have felt the right doing it any other way.

It was the most amazing feeling in the world to know that one day I was going to become Mrs Brown!

And I was on a high for weeks..........

MrsB xxxxx





  • ChazzytChazzyt Posts: 918

    Think I'm going to enjoy your thread image You looked stunning xx 

  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    Let the planning begin....

    When we got engaged we didn't really think about getting married, we knew it was going to happen just not any time soon. We were still only young, had bought our first home together in 2005 which MrB was completely renovating whilst working full time as a self employed builder, and I had just quit university where I was studying to be a nurse so didn't really know what I was going to do with myself.

    It's fair to say we hadn't quite settled down, a wedding just seemed quite a long way off!

    In 2008 we sold our home and took over the running of MrB's parents B&B, things were great at first we were living the dream!
    Things were going that well that In 2009 we decided to get married.

    I've never been that girl we has known what she's wanted for her wedding her whole life, to be honest I'd never giving a wedding a second thought. I didn't have a clue where to start! So I did what I think most Brides to Be do......

    Bought a ton of wedding magazines!

    And little did I know what an effect these magazines were going to have on me over the coming months.

    It was like entering a whole new world, chair covers, sashes, save the dates, chocolate fountains it just went on and on. And there's me thinking I just had to pick a dress, pick a venue and then get married - how wrong was I!

    I bought a scrap book and frantically started making lists and tearing pages out of magazines slowly building up my ideal wedding.
    But something didn't look right - nothing went together it just looked like a jumbled mess of ideas, there was something I was missing.

    And then it hit me...... A Theme! All the wedding magazines talked about these, from vintage to monochrome to festival, that was it that's what was missing,
    I needed a theme - everyone has a theme don't they?

    But how could I have a theme if I didn't even have a venue................

    MrsB xxxxx


  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    The venue search.....

    The key for me to finding my "theme" was to firstly find a venue.
    This had to be one of the most draining but fun parts of wedding planning.
    There were so many questions.


    "How many guests"

    "Can you have the ceremony and reception there"

    "Do you have to use their catering"

    "How many weddings are on the same day"

    "Can you stay the night"


    So off we went with a million questions and started the hunt for our perfect venue.

    Most people assume you will get married in your home town, so that seemed like the best place to start. We live in a smallish seaside town in the north east and although we have some nice buildings not many of them are wedding venues.
    We had 2 choices, not a great deal but hey it's a start.

    The Marine Hotel

    Not the most attractive building but my cousin recently got married there and the food was nice! When we walked in, it just wasn't us at all, I didn't like the huge pillars in the middle of the room, the way the room was laid out or the fact that it was basically just a pub with a function room!



    On to the next..........

    The Staincliffe Hotel

    Now this was more like it. The building was a lot nicer, the rooms were nice, the prices were reasonable and the location was perfect. I had 2 issues with this place tho.
    Number 1 - they held 2 weddings on the same day, I wasn't sure I wanted to share my venue with someone else.
    Number 2 - Almost everyone that gets married in this town gets married here! Now I know that's not necessarily a bad thing - they must be doing something right, but we wanted our wedding day to be different and not to be compared with everyone else who had been married here.



    Feeling deflated we widened our search.........

    The next venue we came across was 15 min drive away but it looked more like a wedding venue, we arranged a viewing and off we went.

    The hotel grounds were stunning, I knew instantly that grounds were going to be a major deciding factor for us - I wanted somewhere nice for our wedding photos to be taken. I was however, disappointed by the actual venue, the building itself wasn't very attractive, the rooms weren't the nicest and they held about 3 weddings a day which was a big no no for us.
    I was really disappointed by this venue as the grounds were simply stunning and I knew there was nothing else like this anywhere near us.





    Or so I thought..............

    MrsB xxxxx



  • Emilyrose1239Emilyrose1239 Posts: 650

    Oooh really enjoying this so far, can't wait to hear more!

  • LeaMarieLeaMarie Posts: 723

    Keep it coming! You looked stunning  image

  • Lou85Lou85 Posts: 1,828 New bride

    I love that picture of you two...keep writing! X 

  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    ChazzyT - Thank you, thats lovely of you, i really hope you enjoy it x

    Emilyrose1239 - Glad to hear your enjoying it, will update some more later today x

    LeaMarie - Thank you, I'm on with the next instalment now x

    Bride31052014 - Thank you, funny enough most people have chosen that picture of us to have in their house 

  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    The venue search continued.......

    We had almost given up on finding the "perfect" venue, until MrB's mam came up with an idea... It seemed doable, reasonable and pretty much everything we wanted.

    We could hold the wedding reception in their hotel.......perfect!

    I don't know why we didn't think of it before, it had a large lounge/dining area, big enough to fit all of our guests, although ideally we would use their garden with a marque.







    We could do the catering ourselves or hire someone in.
    We could provide free drinks - getting them when supermarkets had theirs offer on.
    Large car park for all of our guests and they could all stay over on the night so no-one had to worry about paying for taxis etc.
    And a massive plus point to me was it was in walking distance from the local church - I'd spent months drooling over these pictures wishing I could do the same.




     We could have the wedding reception exactly how we wanted, it sounded too good to be true...........

    It turned out it was!

    MrB's mam quickly became obsessed with planning the wedding, she was making decisions on everything, what marque to have, where the guests will come in and what decorations we can put up and where.
    I was losing control of our wedding, it was more and more becoming the day she wanted and not what we wanted at all.
    I just wasn't excited about the wedding, I stopped planning and became really disinterested in anything to do with it - surely a bride to be shouldn't be feeling like this?
    It got to the point where I just couldn't take anymore and told MrB how I felt and thankfully he understood.

    So that was it, the once great idea was over!

    I once again found myself hunting for a venue, I loved the idea of a big grand hall - damn those wedding magazines!
    But, there was one problem.......the nearest venue of this sort was a 45 minutes drive away and I just couldn't face asking our guests to travel that far.

    What was I going to do? My head was aching from venue searching - maybe we should just run away and get married by ourselves!
    That more I thought about it the more tempting it became.

    That was until I came across the most stunningly amazing venue.................

    MrsB xxxxx



  • Little JulesLittle Jules Posts: 1,538

    Loving your thread, looking forward to the updates!

  • ChazzytChazzyt Posts: 918

    Ooooo another cliff hanger, your teasing now image I love that 1st pic of the bride crossing the road xx 

  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    The Perfect Venue……

    On one of my daily internet browsing sessions I somehow came across a Hall about 10 minutes drive away from us. Neither of us had heard of it before but looking at the pictures we immediately knew it was The One!  

    There was no mention of prices or anything on the website - I hate when venues do that! but we arranged a viewing for a couple of days time.  

    To get to the venue you had to drive through a little village with the most amazing houses (would love to live there on day) drive through a biggish field and over the most gorgeous bridge. The driveway was long and sweeping and as we got closer to the hall we both looked at each other and said “this is it…..this is the one”  

    Once we got inside the rooms were stunning we had a lovely tour of the venue with the wedding co-ordinator and then sat down to discuss prices etc.  

    This is where we got a bit of a shock…….  

    The venue were almost booked up for the next 2 years!

    For a weekend wedding we had to have at least 80 people during the day time and 120 on the evening! - I didn’t even think we knew that many people!

    The cost of venue hire and the meal/drinks prices were more than double what we expected!  

    We left the venue not long after that feeling quite disappointed but inside we both still really wanted THAT venue…..It had to be THAT venue nothing else would come close.

    Once we got home I got out my trusty notepad and pen and made a list of everything we would need



    Drinks reception

    Wedding breakfast

    Evening buffet






    Bridesmaid dress


    Hair & Makeup









    The list seemed endless. We worked out it was going to cost roughly £20,000, double what we originally had in mind - but it was worth it wasn’t it?  

    We would have nearly 2 years to save up - we could do it we would just have to cut back on some unnecessary items.  

    So that was it, we were going to be married at Wynyard Hall, we provisionally the date for the 5th March 2011.  

    Now some of you eagle eyed readers may realise the date is different to the date i said we got married in my first post.  

    Let me tell you why………….    

    MrsB xxxxx

  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    The Venue......









  • fludufludu Posts: 21

    wow I am truly enjoying your story and can relate to your venue search experience.Looking forward to the update. 

  • ChazzytChazzyt Posts: 918

    I was a bridesmaid for my cousin nearly 2yr ago now, it's a stunning venue xx 

  • VictoriaLouiseBVictoriaLouiseB Posts: 2,951 New bride

    It's all over........

    With the wedding date provisionally booked all that was left to do was pay the £1000 deposit. I immediately rang the wedding co-ordinator and arranged to go to the venue later that day, pay the deposit and then we could make it official.

    As soon as I put the phone down I knew something was wrong......

    MrB didn't seem his usual self, he looked a bit irritated - stressed!

    And then he came out with it "do you think we're doing the right thing?"

    I was gutted but could see where he was coming from even tho I was trying my hardest not to. We weren't exactly settled, running the B&B was taking its toll on our relationship, we were always arguing, never had our own space or freedom to do what we wanted - it was hard.

    We had a long chat, we both wanted to be married but was this the right time to do it?

    I emailed the wedding co-ordinator (I couldn't face speaking to her on the phone) and told her we wanted to cancel our provisional booking and we would get back to her when we were ready.

    That was it, the dream was over.

    I had to get rid of all the wedding magazines I had, samples i had collected and brochures I was hording. I hated doing it, MrB told me to keep them for next time but I just couldn't keep them in the house not knowing when the next time was going to be I was going to be using them.

    I didn't know what I was going to do with myself, wedding planning had taken over my life,
    it was crazy really - how quickly you drop everything else and focus solely on the wedding.

    It was going to be hard but I hard to get my life back.....

    MrsB xxxxx

  • ChazzytChazzyt Posts: 918

    awww no, I bet that was all so hard, I'm really glad you have managed to come out the other side though & obv had your perfect day. Oooo I have just seen you are pregnant too, massive congratulations. You are right though, wedding planning does completely take over your life, I'm going to miss it so much xx 

  • Carmen212Carmen212 Posts: 1

    Where you're gonna buy bridesmaid dresses girls. image I have the same problem. I was thinking between Evica Dresses and Two Birds

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