Wednesday, 13 August 2014

London's Calling

It's official - The Dotted Crotchets String Quartet and Trio are coming to London! After a successful first year in Glasgow, and a very successful 3 years in Manchester, we have decided to branch out even further and bring our music to the capital city.

The London group will only be available from the 1st September 2015, but we are now taking bookings for weddings and events after this date.

Having received many enquiries over the past few years to perform for weddings and events down South, we know that this is going to be a popular decision. If you know anyone in the London area that is getting married and looking for some contemporary live music for their wedding, please pass on our details via and help us spread our news!

Thursday, 22 May 2014

A Dotted Crotchets Wedding - Holly & Trevor

In September 2013 The Dotted Crotchets String Trio headed off to Statham Lodge Country House Hotel in Lymm, Cheshire to perform for Holly and Trevor's big day.

From the bride: "Trevor and I have known of each other for years but it wasn’t until we were introduced at mutual friends BBQ that our romance began. I lived away at the time in Cambridge so we did long distance for several months before I moved back home to Runcorn. We moved in together almost immediately and had only been together a year before we decided to get married. 
We started organising things straight away, visiting venues and attending local wedding fairs. We decided on Statham Lodge Country House Hotel in Lymm. A Georgian Manor House surrounded by acres of private gardens provided the perfect back drop for our ‘English tea party’ themed wedding. We spent a year collecting old glass jars which I decorated with pearls and lace to hold tea lights and hand tied flowers for table decoration. We sourced mismatched cups and saucers from charity shops and car boot sales for our guests to drink tea. My Mum and I designed the table plan using a large ornate gilt picture frame which we decorated with bunting and all things tea party.

A friend and I heard The Dotted Crotchets playing at a wedding fair in Manchester and I couldn’t wait to get home to tell Trevor all about them. We thought what a lovely surprise it would be for our guests during the drinks reception to have some live entertainment and vowed to keep it a secret. With so many songs in their repertoire we chose songs by Lady Gaga, Take that and Bruno Mars. A friend and her husband said they enjoyed seeing who could guess the song the quickest. 
Trevor chose Pachelbel Canon in D as my entrance song. I hadn’t seen or spoken to Trevor since 4pm the previous afternoon and I was desperate to know how he was feeling. I was a little late getting to him and the registrar had made a joke about me not coming so I think he was more than a little relieved to hear the words ‘please be upstanding for the arrival of the bride’. The service was beautiful, with a few mistakes made along the way as we tried to get our vows out whilst grinning like Labradors. This created a more relaxed atmosphere as we bumbled our way through the service waiting for those special words ‘I now pronounce you Husband and Wife’.
For our exit song we chose Stevie Wonder’s signed, sealed, delivered. A happy, upbeat song which summed up how we felt as we all tailed out in to the September sunshine for chilled glasses of Kir Royale and bottles of Perroni.

For the photographs we wanted someone with an excellent reputation who we could trust completely. We chose Martin Ross Photography in Runcorn. A Man and Wife team who have been in the business for over 25 years. They also happen to be my parents so it was a no brainer really.  
The wedding breakfast consisted of finger sandwiches with an array of different filings. Large homemade scones with fresh jam and clotted cream. Tiered stands of miniature cakes and chocolates littered the table and an endless supply of tea, coffee and wine. After the speeches and the cutting of the cake, a fabulous three tiered sponge cake. Each tier decorated slightly different in keeping with our theme made by my Step-mum. We were all ushered out the room to prepare for the evening’s entertainment.
Our first dance was to Etta James ‘At Last’, followed by Mcflys ‘If this is love’ the dance floor was full of guests all working up an appetite ready for the BBQ buffet. It has been 8 months since our special day and we love being married, its great finding that one person you get to annoy for the rest of your life."

Holly and Trevor's Wedding Playlist

Bridal Entrance
Canon in D - Pachelbel

Signing of the Register
One Day Like This - Elbow
Rule the World - Take That
Songbird - Fleetwood Mac

Signed, Sealed, Delivered - Stevie Wonder

Drinks Reception
A mixture of pop music performed by The Dotted Crotchets String Trio

First Dance
At Last - Etta James

String Trio: The Dotted Crotchets
Bride's Dress: Wife To Be
Hair : Suzanne Mills, Runcorn

We had a lovely day at Statham Lodge and felt very appreciated with lots of the guests requesting the next songs to play!

Congratulations again to Holly and Trevor, and thank you for sharing your day with us.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

A Dotted Crotchets Wedding - Laurence & Sharon

Last Summer The Dotted Crotchets String Quartet braved the heat and the roadworks to perform for Laurence and Sharon's big day in Liverpool, and what a beautiful wedding it was!

"Laurence's proposal was a fairytale - at the top of Macchu Pichu following a 10 month round the world trip - but when it came to planning a fairytale wedding, I didn't have any preconceived ideas. So we began with how we wanted the day to feel - relaxed, happy, personal and fun! We both love Liverpool and decided on two amazing city waterfront venues - The Light, in the Royal Liver Building for the ceremony and the Merseyside Maritime Museum for the reception and party. The venues set the scene for a nod to the nautical, which I incorporated into lots of the handmade touches. I designed all of our stationary, including our invites with the logo 'our next adventure' around an anchor against sea-blue chevron stripes; made a ribbon pin with anchor design for my nephew; and tied mini bronze anchors around the necks of the vases and jars I collected in the months leading up to the big day."

"In a historic building, The Light was a completely new wedding venue, so new in fact that we would make history in being the first people to get married there. It was a beautiful room which needed little decoration apart from a few playful paper pom poms lining the aisle. We thought a string quartet would be perfect in this space, and it was a detail which we kept secret from all of our guests - which really added the wow factor as they arrived on the day. With the Liverpool triathlon happening on the same day, there were a number of road closures, and despite allowing an hour to travel what was a 5 minute journey, I was still 15 minutes late, so thankfully the quartet entertained our guests with a list of pop classics - everything from ELO - Mr Blue Sky to Katy Perry - Firework."

"I fell in love with my dress (as most brides do!), it was fun with a vintage feel, I dressed it with an original 50s headband and had a 50s style veil made. My sisters were my beautiful bridesmaids and were able to carry off pretty, embellished, high necked and above the knee cream dresses. My flowers were a mix of oranges, yellows and pinks, tied in a relaxed style."

"I walked down the aisle to Desree's Kissing You, an emotional and favourite song for both of us, there were lots of tears! For the signing of the register we had The Beatles - All You Need is Love, Ben King - Stand By Me and Aerosmith - Don't Wanna Miss a Thing. Reminding us of a special time in Ibiza, where we met, we chose Coldplay's Viva La Vida as our triumphant exit song! More music followed as we enjoyed Prosecco, canap├ęs and the views across the Mersey from the balcony on what was a scorching hot summers day."

"All 120 guests walked to the Maritime Museum, one of our ushers bought us both 99'er ice creams - just one of the many photo opportunities along the way! Arriving to a red carpet, we had Pimms on the dock, where guests could find their table on the old world map table plan (homemade by Laurence and I) before moving up to the Dining Rooms. In the reception and party room there were more handmade touches - a 'dancing shoes' picnic basket full of flip flops which got raided before the DJ arrived! A vintage style suitcase with a pile of postcards from Liverpool, Ibiza and Glastonbury (the scene of our 'hag' do) was our guestbook. We invited guests to add to the homemade dessert table - Laurence's mum made a traditional fruit wedding cake and I iced it - it definitely looked homemade!"

"Our first dance was to Elbow's 'One Day Like This' and by the end of the song all of our family and friends had joined us on the dance floor, which summed up the day for me, so much fun and happiness surrounded by the people closest to us!"

Laurence and Sharon's Wedding Playlist

Bridal Entrance
Kissing You - Desree

Signing of the Register
All You Need is Love - The Beatles
Stand By Me - Ben King
Don't Wanna Miss a Thing - Aerosmith

Viva La Vida - Coldplay

Drinks Reception
A mixture of pop, indie and chart hits performed by The Dotted Crotchets

First Dance
One Day Like This - Elbow

String Quartet: The Dotted Crotchets
Photographer: Phil Whitby
Ceremony Venue: The Light - Royal Liver Building (sadly no longer available for weddings)
Flowers: Fishlocks
Bride's Dress: Justin Alexander
Bridesmaid's Dresses: Ted Baker
Groom's Suit: Canali from Flannels

We love how unique and personal this wedding was, and I'm sure you'll all agree that Sharon and Laurence pulled it off in style!

Congratulations to Mr and Mrs Denis!

If you would like your wedding to feature on our blog please send an email to for more information.

Monday, 3 February 2014

A Dotted Crotchets Wedding : Natalie and Clare

At the end of August 2013 we had the privilege of performing for Natalie and Clare's wedding reception at the Manchester Art Gallery. This is a beautiful and unique city centre venue, which suited the couple's big day perfectly...

"We got engaged in Paris at the beginning of 2012 after 6 years together. As soon as we started planning our wedding it was clear that what we both wanted was to ensure that our family and friends had a fun, relaxed and enjoyable day. For us making a commitment in front of the people that we love was enough, so all of the ‘extras’ that we planned into the wedding were to show our appreciation for the support and love we have received from our friends and family. We wanted to arrange a day that they would all enjoy and remember as a ‘good day out’."

"We chose The Manchester Art Gallery as our venue, having been to a friend’s wedding reception there a few years previously. We could imagine creating the day that we wanted in that venue. We knew that we wanted some live music to feature in the day and set about looking at the options and how this would fit in with the ‘feel’ that we wanted for our day. We liked the idea of a string quartet who could play during the drinks reception and dinner to give our friends and family something nice to listen to, but we didn’t want the traditional ‘classical’ string quartet. We googled ‘string quartet and Manchester band music’ and up popped The Dotted Crotchets. We loved their unique style and the fact that they wore colourful quirky clothes rather than more formal attire, completely in tune with our loose Parisian/vintage theme, including colourful macarons as favours for the guests! The Dotted Crotchets website was really helpful and we loved the extensive musical playlist on offer, including The Stone Roses and The Cure!! They were exactly what we were looking for and we emailed them straight away hoping they would be available! They were and we certainly have no regrets about booking them for our wedding."

"Our ceremony took place in one of the smaller gallery rooms with the day moving on into one of the larger galleries for the drinks reception. We had chosen to add hibiscus flowers to the glass of prosecco that our guests would receive, giving it a distinctive purple colour and in keeping with the bright colours of the macarons and flowers. The Dotted Crotchets played our eclectic choice of music throughout the drinks reception ranging from Oasis to Lady Gaga. Our guests really enjoyed their music and I think they all felt very decadent wandering around the artwork, drinking prosecco and listening to a very talented and unique string quartet."

"The day moved on through the gallery and dinner was in the glass atrium, where The Dotted Crotchets set up professionally at one side of the room. They played music as our entrance into the atrium was announced and we walked together down the staircase into the centre of the room, something that we had decided at the last minute to do and were so glad we did as we honestly felt so special being welcomed by our guests. The Dotted Crotchets thought on their feet and plated ‘Marry you’ by Bruno Mars for our entrance. We were happy with their choice. They played throughout dinner until the speeches and really added to the ambience and feel to the day that we had wanted to create."

"Dinner was over and sadly it was time for The Dotted Crotchets to leave, however, the live music was not over as Natalie’s dad had arranged for The Manchester Gay and Lesbian choir to sing to us all after his speech. They sang ‘Climb every mountain’ – The sound of music and ‘Somewhere’ – West Side Story. This was an amazing end to a wonderful day and we all moved onto the evening reception to dance the night away."

Natalie and Clare's Wedding Playlist

Bridal Entrance
I Won't Give Up - Jason Mraz

Signing of the Register
Perfect Kiss - Marie Hines
The Power of Love - Gabrielle Aplin
Never Tear Us Apart - Paloma Faith

So Close - Calvin Harris

Drinks Reception
A mixture of pop, indie and chart hits performed by The Dotted Crotchets

First Dance
Everywhere - Fleetwood Mac

String Quartet: The Dotted Crotchets
Flowers: David Jayet-Laraffe of Frog flowers
Photographer: Haydn Rydings
Videographer: OYFE Productions
Table plan and stationary: Peter Mason
Rings: Anne of RA Jewellery

Congratulations again to Natalie and Clare!

If you would like your wedding to feature on our blog please send an email to for more information.

Thursday, 2 January 2014

A Dotted Crotchets Wedding: Ben and Nicola

To kick off the new year in style, we have got another stunning wedding to share with you today. Nicola and Ben were married in April 2013 and The Dotted Crotchets String Quartet had the privilege of performing for both the ceremony and drinks reception at Sefton Park Palm House. Here's a beautifully written account of the wedding from Nicola...

"Ben had planned his proposal to the finest detail. Prior to our summer holiday in 2011 he had secretly chosen a ring and carried it with him throughout our trip from Montreal to Washington DC. Not even a hurricane in upstate New York was going to spoil it.

On the penultimate night we ended a night-time walk around the presidential monuments in DC at the Lincoln Memorial, and on the very spot were Martin Luther King gave his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech he popped the question. And how could a girl refuse?

After we returned home we both agreed that the only place we could possibly hold our wedding was the Sefton Park Palm House, a Victorian glass house in the heart of South Liverpool.

So the date was set, and we spent the next 18 months making our dream day a reality. We wanted to make sure that it truly reflected us as a couple, and that all our friends and family would instantly know why we had chosen every little detail.

After the venue, the next booking we made was The Dotted Crotchets. As an avid Love My Dress reader (wedding magazines really weren’t my thing) I knew as soon as I read their website and listened to tracks they were the quartet for us. We wanted a mix of classical, contemporary and the occasional silly pieces of music to add that extra something to the experience of our guests and getting everyone into the wedding spirit. 

From there I then tracked down ‘the dress’, a Charlie Brear, Vintage Wedding Dress Company gown thanks to Eve at The White Closet, adding some little finishing touches from Sash and Co, Flo and Percy, and shoes from Benjamin Adams.

For both my sister, Mandy, as bridesmaid and for Ben, we didn’t want textbook wedding garb. So we headed to LK Bennett for Mandy, and to Jack Wills for Ben’s grey suit. And for the whole groom party, we went with matching stripy Paul Smith socks, and grey skinny ties from the dearly departed Aubin & Wills. 

We also travelled to the Lake District to commission a personalised slate platter for our wedding cake from Chesters by the River just outside Ambleside, to Coniston Brewery for drinks, and to York to Bettys for tea, coffee and an after dinner chocolate fix. We also created, with Carringtons Catering, a spring menu, and with florist David Beckham Doyle seasonal bouquets and buttonholes, including the most beautiful fringed tulips.

Along the way we also worked with a close friend on bespoke designs for all our invitations, orders of services, seating plans and so on, choosing motifs to represent places Ben and I had travelled to, as well as collecting wedding photos of our parents and grandparents, a 1930s typewriter for guests to write messages on, and a monogrammed suitcase of Ben’s granddads for cards and gifts.

When the day finally arrived we really couldn’t have asked for more. Despite the odd spring shower the sun came out in time for the ceremony, bathing the park in golden sunlight. As the guests arrived the Dotted Crotchets sounded amazing and really set the tone for the whole event.

Before the ceremony we had a mix of songs, and Ben particularly appreciated some Fleetwood Mac to calm his nerves before I arrived. And walking down the aisle to the traditional Bridal March was a dream come true for me. 

While we signed the register we wanted to celebrate our Liverpool wedding and asked Ruth if they could learn and perform ‘In My Life’ by the Beatles. We both love that song, and it was especially fitting as the wedding was taking place in John and Paul’s backyard.

After the serious business was out of the way The Dotted Crotchets really got the celebrations under way and raised a few laughs with our quirky song choices. As we were having our photographs taken we couldn’t help but smile as they gave amazing renditions of ‘Match of the Day’ and The Cantina Band tune from Star Wars.

Safe to say everyone had a totally amazing day and we cannot thank The Dotted Crotchets enough for creating the perfect atmosphere."

Ben and Nicola's Wedding Playlist

Bridal Entrance
Bridal Chorus - Wagner

Signing of the Register
In My Life and All You Need is Love - The Beatles

The Wedding March - Mendelssohn

Drinks Reception
A mixture of pop classics, chart hits, film and television themes

String Quartet: The Dotted Crotchets
Photographer: Stuart Rayner
Graphic Design: Mark Lane

Congratulations again to Mr and Mrs Capper!

If you would like your wedding to feature on our blog please send an email to for more information.