This time last year we were newlyweds, celebrating our marriage on the dancefloor with all our favourite people. I can't believe a year has passed already. It's been a fun filled year of travels, munro bagging, obstacle racing, alphabet dating and a lot of eating. While I'd of loved to celebrate our first anniversary with a little try on of the dress, there's no way in hell it'd fit! Instead, I thought I'd share our official wedding photos, courtesy of JM Style. Something which I haven't done too much of on here thus far!
I knew I wanted Jules to photograph our wedding from the minute we were engaged. Her images are beautiful and she did a fabulous job of capturing our day. She's 100% professional and was a great help on the day with her abundance of wedding experience. If you're on the look out for a photographer in Aberdeen or shire I highly recommend JM Style!
You'll find a full list of suppliers (and links) at the end of this post.
I spent the morning (and the night before!) at my parents house getting ready for the big day. Everything started early, with hair and make-up kicking off around 8am. There were 5 of us to fit in so it had to be done. Everyone commented on how chilled I seemed during the getting ready process but to be honest I don't think it had sunk in yet. I was just enjoying a relaxed morning with my family and best friends. Dad made breakfast wraps and we went through copious amounts of tea.
The bouquets and buttonholes were delivered to the house in the morning so they were nice and fresh for the day ahead. I was so in love with the sunflowers and thistles in our flowers. Gordon had also arranged for a bunch of flowers to be delivered to both me and my mum in the morning which was a lovely surprise!
I'd bought gifts for my parents and bridesmaids as a thank you for all their help and support during the planning process so we opened them together in the morning and then toasted the day with a glass of bucks fizz - I was worried about getting too drunk too quick if we cracked open the champagne!
The nerves didn't kick in until the very last minute when I was getting buttoned up into my dress. My 3 year old nephew had a sneak peek and told me I was beautiful though, so I knew it was all good! ;)
Meanwhile, Gordon had arrived at the venue with his Dad and two best men. Yes, two best men - both called Chris! They'd had a stressful morning after realising they didn't have enough cufflinks and trying to get their shoelaces to stay up around their ankles. Luckily the "Aberdeen Airport" Facebook check in was only a joke! I'd left them with a couple of last minute jobs at the venue which I hoped kept them occupied.
Our ceremony was kept short and sweet, and to be honest it passed in a blur. Chris read a poem which we'd found online, we exchanged vows and rings and then moved to a side room with the bridal party to sign the register and make it all official. We then moved back to the grand hall where we performed a Scottish Quaich ceremony - where the bride and groom share their first drink as man and wife from a two handled silver cup - to really seal the deal. Meanwhile my auntie had somehow managed to lock herself outside which still makes us laugh today!
To avoid having nothing but mobile phones in the pictures, we opted for an "unplugged" wedding - meaning only Jules was allowed to photograph the ceremomy. I do wish we'd had a video of the day now as it's parts like this I barely remember. Everybody tells you it goes by so quick but you never really understand until it's all over. If you're unsure about a video, my advice is just do it. It's better to have one and hate it, than not to have one and regret it! Looking back, it's the only decision I'd change.
We were so lucky with the weather. Our guests enjoyed bellinis and aperol spritz in the sunshine while we had our family portraits snapped. We'd kept our list of photos short and sweet as I much prefer candid shots and we didn't want it to take up the whole afternoon. We had a good laugh trying to get some bubble shots which didn't quite go to plan, and everyone was just able to mingle and enjoy the afternoon.
Eventually our guests moved down to the yurt where our dinner and evening dance was being held. Whilst they tucked into some canapes and made full use of the 10 Dollar Shake bar, we were able to have our own photos taken privately with Jules. Our venue has a beautiful garden and we took full advantage of the little wooden swing we'd found in the trees!
Crimonmogate estate is actually a family home, owned by Viscount Petersham and his wife (former Chanel model and sculptress) Candida Stanhope. Our host invited us back in to enjoy a bottle of champagne on them in the drawing room. It was nice to have a moment completely alone. A couple of glasses later and I was fully relaxed and twirling away for photos!
Before we knew it, it was almost time for dinner! We made our way down to the yurt, champagne in hand, to be met with a cocktail for me, whiskey for him and a tray of canapes awaiting our arrival! What can I say we were well looked after. I almost feel like we missed out on a big part of the day as our guests were pretty tipsy too by the time we arrived. I'd recommend trying to keep your photo time to a minimum, although we did enjoy having ours taken and it was the only time we were completely together without distraction!
We decorated the entire venue ourselves, with the exception of the flowers and the fairy lights which came with the yurt. With the help of my family and the bridal party I reckon we did a decent job. Lots of paint, stress and tears went into it! Laura was our resident chalkboard artist and did an amazing job - especially that New York skyline! As we got engaged in New York we kept to the theme; using landmarks and our holiday photos as table names, having the skyline on all our stationary and even the cake. Our table plan was a map of Manhattan!
The bikes belong to Mum and Laura, and we used the baskets to hold our bouquets during the reception. We picked up lots of little crafty bits from Home Bargains, Hobbycraft and the Range, including the mini chalkboard easels, "Just Married" banner and the "love" cake topper. We donated money to a mental health charity in lieu of favours, giving each of our day guests a SAMH pin but my Mum baked literally hundreds of pieces of shortbread which we wrapped up and sealed with our very own C&G stamp!
For our centre pieces I bought heart shaped slate place mats and hurricane candle jars from the Range. I used Photobox to order polaroid style prints for table names, and hung some around the yurt like bunting, as a little timeline of our relationship. We collected empty Porters gin and various whiskey bottles for the flowers from friends and family - a great excuse for Gordon to enjoy a dram or two in the lead up to the big day!
Speeches from my Dad, Gordon and his best man (other Chris) had us crying tears of laughter, nostalgia and happiness all at once. We did film these which I'm really glad about. After the typical toasts to the happy couple and absent loved ones, it was time to eat! Our meal was epic but I won't go on - you can read about it here instead!
Soon enough it was time for our evening guests to arrive. As the hall in Crimonmogate was fairly small we'd had a very intimate ceremony with only immediate family and our four closest friends, who were all in the bridal party! In the evening the rest of our loved ones arrived - work mates, gym mates, diving buddies, extended family and family friends, all our favourite people! We would have loved to have them celebrate the whole day with us but there just wasn't space. The cake cutting was left til they arrived so it was one more part of the day we could share with them.
Dance Magic Dance
The final "official" part of the day was the first dance. I just wanted to get it over and done with - I didn't want to be alone on the dancefloor a second longer than necessary! Gordon's cousin performed our first couple of songs before passing the mic to Wonderland - a fab wedding band who had the dancefloor filled all night, stopping only for the hotdog break! I wrote more about our wedding music here.
Best Day Ever.
The evening ended with me in my brother's socks to rest my weary dancing feet! It was a day of love, laughter and pure happiness and I never wanted it to end. I am so lucky to have a fantastic group of friends and my wonderful family who made our big day what it was. Not to mention my strong, handsome and supportive best friend - my husband, Gordon.
Photographer: JM Style (all images in this post are by Jules)
Venue: Crimonmogate, Aberdeenshire
The Dress: Maggie Sottero from Brides Delight, Aberdeen
Bridesmaid Dresses: Little Mistress
Kilts: Georgian Dress Hire, Aberdeen
Rings: Rox and Tiffany & Co
Flowers: Blue Orchid, Peterhead
Hair: Emma Taylor at Room 7, Peterhead
Make-up: Jade Gourlay MUA
Cake: Let Them Eat Cake
Catering: Eat Beetroot (now Salt & Sauce)
Bar: 10 Dollar Shake