When it came to the ceremony venue, it was an easy choice; Katherine’s parents are both Canons at the beautiful Wakefield Cathedral. “We’ve always loved the size and majesty of it,” she says. For post-vow celebrations they chose the spectacular 18th-century Oulton Hall for its gorgeous interiors and pretty gardens. “As a hotel, it was really convenient for our guests at the end of the night,” the bride says. “In addition, the suite was large enough for our 100 guests and a dancefloor!”
Drawing inspiration from the season, the couple opted for an autumnal theme with a palette of deep red, navy, burnt orange and gold. The flowers reflected this with red roses and astrantia, thistles to represent Sam's Scottish heritage, blue berries, white roses and deep greens in the background. "For the centrepieces, we had gold bowls brimming with florals alongside tea-light holders," Katherine says. "The top table had three sections of autumnal-coloured flowers linked together with greenery." Two stunning white cherry blossom trees created impact in the room.
The cake was three delicious tiers of Victoria sponge, chocolate and coffee, all decorated with white icing and flowers. The stationery had a classic feel, with the table plan, place settings, menus and table names all written in gold ink on white card. "The tables were named after railway stations that have significance to us, from where we grew up to where we went to university," Katherine explains.
"We also had a description of the meanings on the back of the place names." The bride, father-of-the-bride and bridesmaids arrived in style at the cathedral in two white Jaguars. After the ceremony, the newlyweds were whisked to Oulton Hall in a Rolls Royce.
The bride knew she was after a timeless, elegant big-day look. "I wore a long-sleeved, lace A-line gown," she tells us. "I teamed it with crystal drop earrings and a bracelet from my mum, which matched Sam's cufflinks. My shoes coordinated with the blush-coloured silk lining of my dress."
The men looked dashing in navy three-piece suits, with Sam standing out with a Burns-clan tartan waistcoat. They looked fabulous alongside the bridesmaids in their deep red maxi dresses, with low backs and side splits.
The pair chose live music for each part of the day. "We had a wonderful organist play during the ceremony," Katherine says. "One of our friends, who is a classically trained singer, performed during the signing of the register. At Oulton Hall, a string quartet set the scene as our guests arrived before a live band got the party going in the evening! They were all a huge success as each set created the perfect ambience for each stage of the wedding."
Couples often find their wedding day is a rollercoaster of emotions. This was no different for Katherine and Sam. "We went from nervous to excited to exhausted at the end of the night," Katherine smiles. "The whole day was perfect and exactly what we envisioned – there were no hiccups."
They knew they couldn't have done it all without their dream team of local suppliers. "Our photographer, Matt Nicholls Photography, was brilliant and took gorgeous photos of us," Katherine says. "He was also excellent at managing the crowd and keeping everyone entertained. Jodie from the venue was also amazing, helping us to organise the reception while we were planning everything from our home in London."