The Coniston Hotel, Skipton
Laura & Tom
The Coniston Hotel, Skipton Wedding Photography
The Coniston Hotel is Set in 1400 acres of idyllic countryside and with a 24-acre lake backdrop, a truly amazing location for Yorkshire wedding photography. I had met Laura & Tom at Laura brothers wedding that I photographed a few year back in the Lake District
Lucky Laura packed her wellies as it was a typical Yorkshires summer day but the day was so beautiful -however stunning the location was or the flowers ….. my absolute favourite thing about this wedding is Laura & Tom’s faces they literally could not have looked any happier!
Laura and Tom say;
Tom and I had been saving to buy a house for while, we were fortunate enough to be able to buy a new build property. On moving day, the sales lady who sold us the house and the buildings manager needed to show us around the property to check we were happy with everything. After we had looked around the house I was making Tom do the obligatory selfie outside the sold sign. We were moving all our stuff over the same day so once we had taken a few pictures outside the front door I was trying to hurry Tom off to start moving boxes, Tom starts telling me that he has one other thing he wants to do and I keep telling him that we don’t have time! Next thing I know, Tom is down on one knee outside our dream home with the most perfect engagement ring in his hand asking me to marry him. Once I had said yes, there were builders clapping and cheering from the other side of the estate! The engagement made moving day so much more enjoyable and it was only later on in the afternoon that Tom told me he hadn’t listened to a thing the buildings manager had told us that morning because he was too nervous!
Our wedding date was 21st July 2017, we always knew we wanted to get married in the summer months in the hope the weather was good. Luckily the wedding venue we chose had a date in July available and we were able to have it on a Friday as a large majority of our wedding guests were shift workers.
When Tom and I got engaged we had asked a few friends if they had any recommendations of any wedding venues, a friend of a friend had mentioned how they had got married at The Coniston Hotel and raved about it. We made an appointment to look at The Coniston first which was closely followed by 3 other venues. We found that with the other 3 venues we were constantly comparing them to The Coniston so it didn’t take us long to realise we wanted to get married there. We both just loved how “us” The Coniston was, it felt so relaxed and romantic when we looked around and we loved how the wedding area felt very secluded from the rest of the hotel. The views over the lake were also incredible so we knew (whatever the weather!) that wedding pictures by the lake would be amazing. The wedding co-ordinators were also incredibly helpful and really seemed to understand what type of wedding we wanted. There was plenty of room for guests to stay in hotel and there were also other hotels very nearby.
We didn’t have a specific theme but more of a vintage style is what we liked. We love the look of lace and hessian together which is what materials we had based our “save the date” invites and the main wedding invites on. We included some pastel peach colours which we felt really complimented the lace and hessian. We also had an inordinate amount of hessian bunting! Tom’s Mum is extremely crafty and wonderful at bringing ideas to life, Tom’s Mum made a very impressive 180 metres of bunting all together, 120 metres were incorported into the ceiling drapes in the wedding breakfast room which looked amazing and the rest were dotted around the venue with lovely hand painted lettering. We had quite a lot of wood involved in the wedding also with wooden slices for the table decorations and wooden stands for scented candles throughout the venue.
We didn’t really have a colour theme other than the lace and hessian, the splash of colour was mainly peach which was the colour in my bouquet, Tom’s buttonhole and my bridesmaids skirts. We wanted a colour that was quite subtle but would tie in to the vintage style we liked.
When I had started thinking about a wedding dress I quite liked the idea of heavily laced dresses, a similar style to Kate Middleton’s iconic dress, I went dress shopping a few times with different friends so I could get a few different opinions! I tried on the lace dresses that I thought I liked first and it just didn’t feel right, I then ended up trying on every possible style dress and got completely overwhelmed with choices to the point that I didn’t know what I wanted! My friend has a friend who works in Ava Rose Hamilton, Silsden and when I looked it up online it looked incredible. Once I visited Ava Rose I knew I wanted to get my dress from there, it’s just so beautiful inside the shop and all the girls who work there are great. I tried on a Justin Alexander dress that I just knew was perfect, it was a bardot style with beautiful beading, nipped in at the waist with a very floaty skirt and long train. It sounds really cliche but I knew when I tried it on that it was the dress I wanted to marry Tom in.
Tom decided to splash out on a tailored suit made by James Michelsberg of Michelsberg Tailoring based in the Victoria Quarter in Leeds city centre. It was a three piece suit in a light sand colour check pattern with some blue running through the check (difficult to describe so see the pictures attached!). We had a great morning at Michelsberg and really enjoyed looking at all the swatches of fabric together. Tom finished his suit with a light blue knitted tie and a pair of chestnut coloured leather brogues from Cheaney’s, also in the Victoria Quarter. The finishing touch was a pocket watch gifted to Tom by his auntie and uncle when he was born. His mum and dad had been saving the watch for the ‘right time’ and gave it to him and month or two before the wedding!
I was lucky enough to have 2 bridesmaids and a bridesman. I wanted the girls in an outfit that they felt comfortable in but also something they could wear again, after sharing some ideas with them we decided on a gorgeous blush Pria Drape Skirt and a cream bardot fitted top, the girls wore there own shoes which complimented the outfit perfectly. Mr bridesman already had a gorgeous grey suit which he wore and we got him a blush flowery pocket square, a blush knitted tie and some lovely brogue shoes.
The groomsmen wore their own suits which complimented one another really well, the best man wore the same knitted blue tie as Tom’s which looked great. All the groomsmen has lovely gypsophila buttonholes and bridal party had gypsophila bouquets.
Tom and I, along with a lot of family and friends, stayed at The Coniston the night before the wedding. 30 of us had a lovely meal in a local pub the night before, very casual and relaxed, and it was an opportunity for some guests to meet one another before the big day. As we stayed at The Coniston the night before the wedding we did not need any transport on the day.
The Coniston Hotel, Skipton Wedding Photography – Our photographer on the day was Bethany Clarke. I simply couldn’t rave about Beth enough! Beth was my brother’s photographer at his wedding and I absolutely loved their pictures. In the nicest way possible, I have very little recollection of even seeing Beth at my brother’s wedding and when I saw their pictures I realised why. Beth manages to tuck herself away from the wedding party and captures the most beautiful, natural moments, that’s exactly what she did at our wedding. Beth arrived on the morning in perfect timing for taking some shots of me and the bridal party getting ready and also captured the moment my dad saw me in my wedding dress once I was ready. We had some formal shots of Tom and I with our closest family along with the bridal party and groomsmen. Once those shots were taken, Beth took us to the lake and captured the beautiful moody Yorkshire weather in pictures with just Tom and I. Beth was extremely professional, very friendly and just such a great photographer. I would highly recommend her for anyones wedding. The Coniston Hotel, Skipton Wedding Photography
Tom and I went to Berries Florist, Skipton to order our wedding flowers. I am big fan of gypsophila, I love how simple and classic is looks so definitely wanted them to feature in our flowers. My bridal bouquet was a hand tied posy of apricot lisianthus and white gypsophila wrapped in natural brown hessian overlaid with white lace and pinned into place with a pearl pin. My 2 bridesmaids and bridesman had a hand tied posy of gypsophila with the same hessian and lace tie with pearl pin. Tom had a buttonhole with a head of the apricot lisianthus with some gyposphilia and natural brown twine around the stem whilst his groomsmen had gypsophila on its own with the brown twine. We also wanted some small bunches of gypsophila and lavender to be placed on the centre pieces of the tables in the wedding breakfast which Berries provided. Ewa, who we dealt with at Berries, was great, she helped pick the lisianthus flower as a I wanted to incorporate the peach colour into the flowers to compliment the bridesmaids outfits. Ewa was very professional and very easy to communicate with via email, the flowers arrived at the exact time on the morning of the wedding and were boxed and presented beautifully.
We had the most amazing favours! Tom and I are big fans of gin and wanted a way to buy our guests a drink. With that in mind, we provided 75ml glass bottles with a wooden cork in the top which were filled with home brewed gin. The gin was infused with lavender and blueberry, Tom’s parents infused the gin for a few weeks and they tasted amazing! We managed to bring a couple of spare bottles home which we plan on having for the next few wedding anniversary’s!
We had been to a few wedding fairs and noticed a few cakes made of cheese and absolutely loved them. After some research, Tom found a cheese shop called The Church Mouse at Barbon. The cheese cake was made up of 5 different cheeses which we were able to choose and it was topped with a love heart shaped Brie. Sophie constructed the cheese tower for the day and it looked incredible! The company who we ordered it with were very friendly, very accommodating to what we asked for and were very easy to communicate with via email, they also provided some crackers. We loved that we were able to eat the cheese and crackers during the evening reception for everyone to enjoy.
Tom and I really wanted a live band at the wedding but when we were looking we struggled to find a live band that also had a DJ facility to play music in between the sets. We remembered that we had been to a wedding a few years ago with a brilliant band and decided to look them up, we booked Funk Conspiracy who are based in the North East. They were absolutely amazing, the lead singers voice was faultless and they played the songs which we asked for following very simple email correspondence with them. They had all their own sound system and in between sets also played the playlists which we provided. Definitely recommend!
We had a roulette table which was set up for the evening reception which our guests seemed to love! The table was busy for a lot of the night and the lady who we booked it through, who also manned the table for the evening, was incredibly helpful and very easy to correspond with. We also had a photo booth which was booked with Limelight Hire, the photo booth was a brilliant way for guests to don some silly outfits and take hilarious snaps and see how many of them could fit in the booth at once! Tom and I also got a photo book of all the pictures taken on the night which was brilliant, it also came with comments off the guests which were hilarious for us to read the following day! One aspect of the day which were invaluable were the videographers, these were booked through Dave Spink Videographer which are based in Pudsey, Leeds. Prior to the wedding lots of other couples who were already married all said they wished they had a video to look at and we are so glad we have one! The 2 girls who came from Dave Spink Videography were brilliant and so friendly, they joined us down by the lake when we were having our couples photos taken and filmed such great moments of the day. One really special moment of the day was when all the evening guests arrived, the videographers played a 3 minute video which captured moments from us getting ready, the ceremony and the wedding breakfast. It was amazing! Our evening reception guests loved it and the 3 minute video is something Tom and I looked at regularly!
Laura: I absolutely loved getting ready in the morning with my bridal party and going through all of the different waves of emotions! We were up early and all so excited for the day ahead, one of my most treasured moments of the day was seeing my Dad once I was ready. It was so perfect and I will never forget it, I loved that the moment was captured by the photographers and videographers. My most favourite part however, was seeing Tom at the end of the aisle as I was walking down. It seems silly but it was only at that exact moment that I thought “wow, we are really doing this” and I couldn’t wait to marry him and say the vows in front of our closet family and friends.
Tom: My favourite part of the day was without a doubt seeing Laura walking down the aisle. I will never forget that incredible moment! A close second favourite was at the very end of the night when we sat in our room opening all our cards and presents together and drinking prosecco. It was really nice to relax together at the end of the day and try and come down from emotional high that we had been on all day!
What would be your top tip for another bride/groom to be?
Have an honest conversation about what you both want/expect from your wedding day. The day is about you two getting married so focus on what you really want to do. It’s very easy to go down the road of trying to please everyone and make lots of adjustments but don’t do this at the expense of your own happiness. We would also recommend haggling a little on prices. This may be a bit controversial but everything is negotiable, and if you approach haggling with humour, charm and politeness, you would be surprised how many suppliers and venues will discount certain aspects of your wedding. Finally, we would completely recommend a videographer for your big day. Watching the video back is really special and captures aspects of the day that sometimes photographs cannot. Tom loved seeing the video of me getting ready in the morning of our wedding day and the moment my dad first saw me in my dress.
The Coniston Hotel, Skipton Wedding Photography