A little while ago we featured the engagement of the very lovely Sarah and Mike, Mike surprised Sarah with a New Year’s Eve proposal in Las Vegas where they were on holiday and then went on to get married at Whinstone View, Great Ayton. Read on for the complete uncut version of Sarah and Mike’s gorgeous Winter wedding at Whinstone View.
Why did you choose Whinstone View, tell us about your first impressions and how important the venue was for you both?
We chose Whinstone view because of the stunning location (Roseberry topping backdrop) and the beautiful food. We also loved the location because it felt intimate and rustic. We desperately wanted to get married New Year’s Eve and had given up on the idea until we met Andrea. We originally went to discuss a spring wedding until Andrea told us about their exciting barn project – the barn. As soon as Andrea showed us the plans we said yes! I just knew it would be beautiful. We watched the barn going up and were invited to lots of events at Whinstone view– in one event we watched a virtual tour of the barn, it was fab! When I saw the completed barn, it exceeded all my expectations. It was so beautiful; I knew my wedding day would be perfect!
Tell us about the theme of the day and why you chose to get married New Years eve? Was it hard finding a venue for New Years Eve?
We chose New Years Eve because the date is special to us as we got engaged in Las Vegas on NYE 2012. It was so hard to find a venue but once we found out about the barn our minds were made up. I think Andrea was excited to, as they hadn’t done a NYE wedding before. To be honest NYE was our theme but we really wanted to show our personalities and wanted the venue to look beautiful! We wanted everyone to think wow when they saw the set up. The theme had a wintery feel with navy tones and lots of candles, twinkly lights and snow! It felt magical and glamorous, dare I say it, almost fairy-tale like. What better way to start the New Year as husband and wife.
Sarah is a total girl so she made sure that they was a bit of glitz and glam. I am a big kid and love sweets so we booked a sweet cart too! . Mike
How did you pull together your ideas for your wedding? Any suppliers that you want to mention in particularly?
I was obsessed with pinterest!! I started searching winter weddings and NYE weddings and pinned everything!! My sisters and best friend helped the ideas come alive! My suppliers were amazing- we had to be sensible with money, so shopped around.
First Class Weddings did an amazing job with the centrepieces. The room looked stunning!!
Partpics photo booth supplied us with the LED love lights that all the guests loved.
Karen Brookes- Photographer- captured every moment of my day beautifully.
Oh this old tree- the most amazing flowers,lots of my guests commented on how beautiful they looked!
Green Biscuit Studios – Wayne is so professional and amazing at what he does. I’ve watched the DVD about 10 times already and cried each time. It is stunning!
The Sugar rose- wedding cake- one word YUMMY!!
Was a winter wedding everything you expected and would you recommend this to couples over a summer wedding?
It was everything I expected and more!! I would recommend it to all couples- I had a strapless dress on and never once felt the cold! Winter weddings are utterly magical and romantic. Honestly the best day of our life and we both said we wouldn’t change a thing!!
Would you recommend Whinstone View and what would you say were the stand out parts for you?
Absolutely we would recommend it to everyone! The whole day was perfect and that was down to the staff; they helped us to create what was the best day of our lives. Andrea, the wedding co-ordinator, made sure the day ran flawlessly, the waitresses made sure the venue looked beautiful from start to finish – i.e. lighting the candles when they had burnt out and the bar staff were in great spirits- keeping the party going well past midnight! Nothing was a chore- even the day before staff helped us to set up and we were there for hours. You should choose Whinstone if you want a beautiful venue with a stunning backdrop, incredible food and hospitality and something more intimate and relaxed. Plus its unique and they is nothing quite like it in the area. Having the lodges also added a wonderful end to a magical day. The barn is beautiful- an absolutely amazing wedding venue- we have only received positive comments from our friends many who say it is the best wedding they have ever been to!
Tell us about your dress, what style did you go?
I spent along time looking for my dress and although I loved trying on the dresses I found it a real struggle to find a dress I really liked. On the off chance I popped into Elizabeth George in Middlesbrough and I am so glad I did. The shop is family run and the girls in there are so gorgeous and make you feel like the only bride in the world. One of the girls picked out my dress and told me to try it on. I didn’t think I would wear anything like it but when I looked in the mirror I burst out crying and couldn’t stop! When you know you know and I knew I had found the right dress! The dress is
Mori Lee – Asymmetrically strapless draped net ivory dress and an extra long/ wide veil. I loved my dress and didn’t want to take it off. I cried when I tried it on for the first time so knew it was the one!
Who were your bridesmaids and groomsmen and what did they wear?
Maid of Honour Rachel Barron (sister), Katherine Barron (sister), Nerissa Stewart (Friend),Kirstie Middleton (Friend) The girls wore a navy ‘one dress over fifteen ways to wear’. The girls chose what style they felt most confortable in. Each one looked beautiful and unique.
Shaun Smith (Best man), Andrew Cochrane (Brother), Martin Sherrington (Friend),Ged Robson (Friend). The boys wore a skinny fit navy brushed wool suit with a burgundy tie- fit lovely with wintery theme.
What did you do for hen and stag celebrations?
All the girls including my mum went to Ibiza. The highlights must be David Guetta at Ushuaia and Pikes house. Honestly I had the best time with all my girls and my maid of honour did a super job at planning. In fact she is so good she should plan weddings!! I also had more of a low-key affair- I went to the pottery loft followed by afternoon tea and then finally York. It was perfect.
All the boys went to Cancun Mexico and then Germany. I can’t really remember them!! Lol but I had a blast.
Can you both share a memorable moment from the day?
Walking down the isle with my dad and seeing mike- I think I cried from the moment I woke up to the end of the night. I was so emotional- the happiest day of my life! Sarah
Seeing Sarah for the first time, she looked so beautiful! Mike
Did you DIY any of your wedding?
One of my best friends and bridesmaids decorated lots of jars for me. We put them all over the venue with flowers in. They looked so effective- so cheap to make too. We also made love heart bracelets for favours. Lots of the girls had them on, on the night.
We also made our own prop box. We had a vintage suitcase and filled it with lots of props from the Pound shop etc.- it was a fab idea and saved some pennies. The boys loved putting on the fairy wings and tiaras.
What was your best purchase?
One of the cheapest was the jars and fake snow. Especially, when all your friends and family are collecting the jars. It looked so effective and we place them all over the venue- even in the toilet!!
I also bought lanterns from B&M to go outside the church. A bystander commented that in all the years they had saw weddings no one had thought about the outside. The lanterns looked so good on the photos.
My friend Helen had got married in the July so she gave me lots of hanging hearts and garland. My top table looked sensational with all the garland- so effective and so much cheaper than real flowers.
Most expensive- LED love lights- they just brought everything together and everyone wanted a photo in front of them.
Tell us about your wedding rings, were you nervous in the run up to the ceremony and did you write you own vows?
Bride- Platinum diamond band- matched engagement ring.
Groom- Platinum plain band.
I couldn’t believe how fast the wedding came round. I was nervous and excited –I wanted everything to be perfect and wanted all the guests to have a good time. I stressed about the tables and order of the day but learnt that actually these things didn’t really matter. What really matters is having everyone that you love and care for sharing your special day with you. We even made sure our loved ones who are no longer here were remembered on our hanging table plan. It was a handmade wish tree- lots of people commented how beautiful it was. Sarah
The only thing I was nervous about was the speech and only wrote notes at 5am on the wedding morning! We made sure the speeches were done before the food so that myself, father in law and best man could enjoy their food. Sarah panicked about the lull in the middle of the day so made sure all timings were correct. We booked some acoustic singers for after the meal which led into the disco. Mike
Where did you go on Honeymoon, where did you stay and what can you recommend about this to other couples?
We went on a mini-moon to New York for 5 days, as Sarah is a teacher and had to go back to school. New York was amazing; we never stopped eating and enjoyed a romantic carriage ride in Central Park. In August we are going on our second part of our honeymoon- so lucky. We are flying to LA and staying for a couple of days- then we are driving to Las Vegas and finally going to Hawaii. I’m so excited!!
Why did you choose this destination?
We love America! Mikes always wanted to drive on Route 66 so we thought this was the perfect opportunity! Las Vegas is amazing- everyone should go at least once! It’s like an adults Disneyland and it’s special to us because we got engaged here- on the strip on NYE in front of 300,000 people!
If you have our latest copy of the magazine you will see some of the wedding featured on page 94 along with Whinstone View.
For more details about Whinstone View contact Andrea on 01642 723285
Photography: Karen Brookes