Keeping with the Winter theme today we thought we’d take you up North for a rustic Scottish wedding complete with Christmas carols and an impromptu sing a long by all the little children to Disney’s Frozen ‘Let It Go’. I must confess I wouldn’t have been able to resist joining in too!
Everybody was then transported by vintage bus to a fabulously decorated hall full to bursting with DIY decor, vintage trinkets and homemade treats all lovingly put together by family and friends the day before. All of these little details added to the overall creative, fun vibe of the wedding day.
I love Audrey Hepburn and now I love Kerry! Both are absolute style icons in my eyes. Kerry’s bespoke vintage inspired Audrey wedding dress and Vivienne Westwood Melissa shoes. Are. Just. Gorgeous! The Bridesmaids look very chic too in their 50s inspired navy dresses and faux fur stoles and how can I forget the Groom paying homage to Scottish tradition and rocking his tartan kilt!
Kerry The Bride: I’ve never been someone who ‘always knew’ what type of wedding dress they were after, but I definitely wanted something comfortable, that I could dance in, something a bit retro, vintage and a little bit out of the ordinary. I tried on a few but had a feeling that I wasn’t going to find anything in the bridal shops that ticked all the boxes. A wedding dress that I kept going back to in my head was the one Audrey Hepburn wore in the movie Funnyface. I spoke to a few dressmakers but no one was really ‘getting’ me, until I met with Wendy from Flossy & Dossy. She was a fellow Audrey fan & it turned out to be one of her favourite films! She created my very own Funnyface-dress (with a few tweaks, such as sleeves because it was winter), complete with a waist-length, tulle veil which I loved so much I didn’t take off the entire day!
I wanted to keep my accessories simple as I don’t tend to wear much jewellery anyway, so I just went with some old drop-pearl earrings that I’d had for years and my engagement ring.
On the day, I took a white vintage 60s handbag with me that I’d found in a jumble sale years ago and wore some ivory wrist gloves– 2 last minute decisions that helped set the whole outfit off.
I’d had my Melissa Vivienne Westwood shoes for about 5 years but never found the right occasion to wear them. The closer it got to the wedding, I realised they were perfect!
Again, my hair and make-up weren’t too different to what I normally do, as I wanted to feel comfortable and still like myself on the big day.
Chris The Groom: I definitely wanted to wear a kilt on our wedding day, so I went to The Kilt Store in Musselburgh where my family have been hiring kilts for over 10years and are always well looked after! I had 7 Ushers and thought it would be nice for everyone to be in the same tartan, Hebridean Thistle. My Dad already had the tartan trousers and we got my Father in Law the matching tie, so everything blended really well. It was nice to wear something so smart and traditional – especially as we hadn’t gone for an entirely traditional wedding. Our overseas guests loved the Scottish touches!
Initially we were looking for a barn; however we couldn’t find anywhere suitable or local enough. We needed a venue to fit our 200 guests that somehow, still feel cosy. We knew a hotel wasn’t for us as we wanted full control over the set up and décor, so we started looking at local village and town halls. The moment we viewed the Corn Exchange in Haddington and saw the big wooden rafters, we knew we could make it our own and give it that ‘barn’ feel that we loved. On the day we were absolutely blown away by how everything looked when we arrived and so many people said the plain hall was unrecognisable!
Colour scheme / Décor
People asked us a lot about our “colours” and “theme” but we didn’t really have either, so it was fun to watch them get a bit confused about what we were doing! Having been together for 10 years, we knew each other’s taste and style pretty well and wanted our wedding to be a reflection of this so we kept the décor fun, light hearted and rustic, with nothing matching.
Pinterest & Tumblr were great sources of inspiration. We spent the year before the wedding collecting things like old vintage jugs, horseshoes, fir cones, suitcases, doilies, chalkboards and bought various bits and pieces from Etsy, Not on The High Street and Ebay.
We called on friends to help with things like bunting and decorating mason jars – it also helped to ply them with wine during our ‘craft’ nights! Lot’s of people helped us with the décor; our Sailor Jerry-esque helium balloons were hand-painted by the very kind lady that owns a boutique in Edinburgh close to where we work, friends kindly loaned us things like birdcages and candelabra’s, my friends Mum even went out in the woods on the morning of the wedding to collect some beautiful branches and twigs for the tables and we also got our friend to make us a few sets of cornhole boards for games during the day, to keep everyone amused.
The night before, about 30 of our friends helped us set up the venue, which was really good fun and definitely added to the relaxed atmosphere we were hoping to create, having them be part of the process.
We didn’t really want a lot of flowers so kept it simple with plain gypsophila for most of the bouquets, buttonholes and posies in mason jars for décor in the church, all bound together with hessian, to keep with the rustic feel.
Flowers by Lamb were recommended to me by a friend who had used them a few years ago for her wedding and I didn’t even bother checking out any other florists, as I remember the price being so reasonable and her flowers were gorgeous! Shirley and her staff could not have been more helpful and nothing was a trouble to them.
Wedding Party Fashion
I chose my Sister and Best Friend as Bridesmaids, as I couldn’t think of anyone else I’d rather have beside me on our wedding day. I pretty much gave them free rein over the dresses, hair, make up and shoes – I wanted them to be comfortable, in dresses that they genuinely liked & ones that they’d be able to wear again. Turns out they both had very similar style anyway and everything they chose complimented the other. We went for midnight blue 50’s style dresses with tulle underskirts, nude sparkly shoes and some faux-fur brown stoles, which added to the vintage feel of the day.
Our Flower Girls were our 3 amazing Nieces who were over the moon at getting to dress up as little princesses for the day – we played a song from Frozen during the signing of the register, much to their delight and they were kept amused by the ‘kids’ corner’ that we created at the reception.
The Ushers were a mixture of friends and family, including Chris’s 2 younger Brothers, as well as some overseas and childhood friends. They did a great job with the music, mingling, handing out orders of service and generally keeping the party going!
We had the best minister! He was really funny and had everyone laughing, which made the day so informal, calm and chilled. I loved walking down the aisle with my Dad, to Sea of Love by Cat Power and seeing all our friends and family there. I’m from a really small village and a lot of the locals that had seen me grown up, came along to the church to see us get married, which was really lovely. We chose Christmas carols as our songs, to keep the relaxed, festive spirit going – everyone knew the words so no excuses for not singing!
We got a nice surprise when our Niece Hollie got up to give a beautiful reading about Pooh and Piglet by A.A. Milne. My Sister had been rehearsing with her in secret for weeks and she did a fantastic job – that was a really special moment!
The service itself was perfect – simple, relaxed, fun and just ‘us’.
During the meal, we played a mixture of music that we both liked – a playlist from one of our many US road trips! When we first started thinking about music for the wedding reception, we immediately went to our friend Chris Peacock, a legendary drummer who plays in the wedding band Callanish – we knew he was the best person to ask about the music. He put together our very own ‘super band’ and they were absolutely fantastic! We were a bit nervous about them performing our first dance song (The Girl by City and Colour), as we both love the original version but they did a brilliant job. It sped up half way through the song and everyone got up to dance at this point, which took the heat off us! So many of our guests commented on how good the band were, which made us really happy as the music was one of the things that was really important to us.
Another thing that was really important to us was the food!
We asked our Bridesmaids Mum to make our cake, as she’s a seriously good baker, which was her wedding present to us and it was delicious! 2 layers of Victoria sponge cake, covered in butter cream icing with a layer of jam/cream in the middle – so simple but so good!
We chose a local restaurant to do our bar and catering, the Waterloo Bistro in Haddington, which we eat at regularly and love. We met with the manager Paul to go through our ideas, ask questions and compile a menu we were happy with, full of locally-sourced, simple, Scottish, hearty dishes. To keep things informal, we didn’t do a seating plan and just let everyone sit where they wanted, then served everything up carvery-style, with the wine/bread out on the tables, as we really wanted guests to feel like they could help themselves, instead of being ‘served’.
Our favours were miniature bottles of Chris’s Grandad’s famous home-brewed bramble whiskey and his Grandma’s home-baked truffles, in little birdcage boxes.
Again, we got lots of compliments on the food and everyone was nicely full after the meal which never normally happens at weddings!
We created a sweet table for dessert, which was full of cakes, Chris’s famous doughnut tower, muffins, pretzels and Tunnocks tea cakes, served on slabs of wood, chopped by our friends Dad.
The buffet at night was a choice of veggie chilli or haggis, neeps and tatties which went down a treat with the evening guests.
After seeing some pictures she’d taken at a friend of a friend’s wedding, then meeting with Kristin from Struve Photography, we instantly knew we wanted her to photograph our wedding! We’re not the most gushy or romantic couple and didn’t feel too comfortable ‘posing’ at first, but our engagement shoot really helped put us both at ease in front of the camera as well as get to know how Kristin worked so, by the time the wedding came, we were so relaxed. We barely even knew Kristin was there as we were so caught up in the moment, enjoying the day, which really shows in the pictures. She captured the day perfectly – the relaxed atmosphere and all the details of our décor – we’re so glad to have pictures like this to look back on and remember our amazing wedding.
In general, we’d say that the most important things for us were; good food, good music and creating a fun, relaxed atmosphere for everyone to feel comfortable and enjoy themselves. And finding the right photographer to capture all of the above so we could look back and remember it all! At the end of the day, it’s basically a big party and a celebration of 2 people and families coming together so the less stress and formalities we had the better!
Be yourself and be comfortable on the day (don’t feel pressured to transform yourself into someone else for your wedding day)
Give yourself plenty of time if you’re doing a lot of the décor yourselves.
Persevere with the DIY, because it results in a wedding that’s more unique and personal to you, which is totally worth it on the day – plus it’s a LOT cheaper!
Don’t be shy about asking people for help or including them – we found that most of our friends and family jumped at the chance and it definitely helps the stress levels! And on the flipside, try to stay patient with people who are only trying to help – it’s coming from a good place.
It sounds cliché but try to take 5 minutes out with each other at some point during the day/night to just stand back and take everything in – a few people told us to do this and we’re so glad we did!