an eclectic, urban Christmas wedding in Chester | uk wedding blog

facebook-profile-picture By Phoebe

So, one of my blog resolutions for 2016 was to get more diverse with my features. I put a call out on social media and was flooded with some gorgeous submissions. I really wanted to blog Mark and Paul’s wedding because on top of all the usual wedding planning stress, they had to accommodate a large proportion of their guests being deaf.

“One of the grooms, and a large proportion of the guests were hearing impaired, with half of the speeches from deaf members of the wedding party. Sign language interpreters were on hand to make sure everybody was fully involved throughout the day and the sign language choir was another brilliant touch that everyone could enjoy”.

photography | Shot By Amy 

I am so sorry the images aren’t the usual size. They are the correct width for the blog, but for some reason WordPress has decided it’s “do what the f*ck I want day today”. Trying to amend!

IMG_6700 IMG_6703 IMG_6705 thevenueOddfellows, Chester

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M & P signs sourced on Trivia boxes on tables sourced from John Lewis. Baubles (favours) home made by one of Groom’s (Paul) mother. Signage (‘This way to Mark and Paul’s wedding’ and Baby its cold Outside – for people who want to sit outside) by (we met her when she had a stall at Knutsford market). Guestbook from M&S. Token guest book (where guests write a message on a small wooden heart and post it in to a frame) sourced from  Candles from IKEA.  Bought fairy lights for space outside.

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Black Eyed Susie Floral Design – Green apples in tall vases.  Provided us floating candles at top table.


Bloomsbury Wedding Cakes (one tier was Chocolate Orange, one Bake well Tart (gluten free) and one Limoncello. The font and colour used for the names on the cake matched the invitations. Cheese cake and chutneys from The Cheese Yard Cheese slate labels from John Lewis.

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Our suits were from Frank Rostron Store We had our initials sewn in to the cuffs of our shirts and also both of our initials and the date of the wedding sewn in to the linings of our jackets. We also chose our own stitching, buttons, collars and pockets of the suits.

Accessories: Pocket watch – passed down from family. Mark’s dad was given a pocket watch from Mark’s mum on their wedding day in 1980. 

Rings: Erica and Edwards

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Kerry Baker: Make-up artist

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Groomsmaid outfits from Coast. Shoes and bag from Dune.

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Printing of invites, menus and order of service by Gipping Press – Ipswich  .  Reading on cards handmade by Paul’s mum Anne.

Oddfellows provided a basket with umbrellas, hot water bottles and blankets for people to go outside.    Oddfellows provided Royal Mail letter box to post cards

IMG_7629 IMG_7668 favouritemoment

Favourite Moment?

  • Readings ‘I like you’ by Sandol Stoddard and ‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling
  • Fathers’ speeches
  • Walking down the aisle and seeing our friends and family.
  • Mark – watching the sign choir
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Personalised cocktails designed together with Oddfellows. Sweet jars – these had personlaised ribbon saying ‘Mark & Paul 05.12.15’ which was handmade by Paul’s mum – Anne Smith.   Cheese for cheese cake sourced from The Cheese Yard in Knutsford, as well as chutneys.   Sweets.    We had a choice of 2 different meals for starter main and desert with, vegan, gf and dairy free options.  Evening we had bacon and sausage butties, Welsh rarebit

IMG_7722 IMG_7746 IMG_7751 thehoneymoon

New York. Stayed at Hilton Hotel in Times Square – room on 42nd floor so we had views of the Empire State and Statue of Liberty. We mentioned we were on honeymoon so they added wine and chocolate-dipped strawberries for us when we arrived. Went to see Kinky Boots and were given complimentary drinks and snacks tickets as we were on honeymoon. Went to see the Rockettes Christmas show – amazing!  We went to went top floor of empire state and top of rock – fabulous views. We saw the colour and lighting change from day to night.  Boat ferry and walked around Statue of Liberty.  Walked over 65 miles in 6 days – went to little places around Soho and Chelsea.  Rockefellers ice skating and Christmas tree was out of this world.  We walked through Central Park – band played Beatles song and everyone got involved in the singing.  Walked along 5th Avenue – shops had outstanding Christmas display – went to Macys and Bloomingdales.  Went on tour bus and driver suddenly stopped and started singing Christmas songs to us all.  9/11 museum  was very moving.  Saw lots of Salvation Army people on streets all over the city singing with bells getting into Christmas spirit.

Had a meal out at Ellen Stardust – Breakfast with waiters singing songs while working.  Staff working there were earning extra money while auditioning for Broadway and American shows etc. 

New York was amazing – raw rough round edges but had a warm heart.  People were very friendly.

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Dee Sign Choir (  Charity organization based in Chester.  We chose signed choir because we want Deaf people to be involved.  Mark’s parents and brother are Deaf – we wanted something that was visual and to have family and friends to be inclusive. With a lead up to Christmas we had Christmas songs.    Band was Twenty Nine degrees – sourced through Wedding Jam based in Liverpool.

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Don’t underestimate how long it takes to finalize and organize the small details! Get started as early as you can!

Look online for inspirations – blogs, pictures

Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends.

Shop around – markets, independent shops, online.

Where did you find your inspiration?

  • Pinterest
  • Wanted a winter wedding – to be cosy and exciting leading up to Christmas with warm log fire during ceremony.  Wanted a quirky and unusual urban wedding venue which matched our personalities.

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