There is so much to love about RMW reader Kirsty’s and her husband Findlay’s big day that I’m at a loss where to start.
In Kirsty’s report you will read how she described photographers Cara and Nye from Lillian and Leonard as “capturing the heart and soul”of her wedding day. And let me tell you folks, they really did. Looking through the gallery was like uncovering a moving and beautiful love story where every special moment is documented to perfection.
The father of the bride seeing his daughter for the first time on the day, Kirsty spritzing her favourite scent, the joy and laughter of the best girls, drinks with guests on the beach before the reception….
The list is endless.
And if that isn’t enough to make your Monday lovelier then Kirsty’s entertaining and witty writing, clever DIY ideas and Rock My Wedding inspired styling certainly will.
A Vintage Theme
The ceremony was held in ” St Andrew Blackadder Parish Church” in North Berwick High Street. The minister was actually on holiday on our date but, conveniently, Fin’s dad is a minister, so that minor hitch was easily solved.
The decor for me was, along with the stationery, the best part of wedding planning. I sooo enjoyed getting crafty and dusting off my creative side for the first time since school.
The whole theme of the wedding came from a 1930s GNER railway poster of North Berwick. Fin and I both love vintage posters, particularly old travel posters, and we knew we wanted to incorporate that into our wedding. This led to a bit of a vintage, travel-inspired theme that loosely tied everything together, from our handmade luggage-tag save the dates to our postcard-style invitations using the North Berwick poster (which my talented bridesmaid Kristen helped us design). The invitations each had a vintage stamp (I bought a job lot from ebay) individually selected for each guest, and a custom postmark from Etsy with our names and wedding date on it.
The shoes I finally wore were the sixth – yes, sixth – pair of shoes that I bought. My dress had a scalloped lace hem which meant adjusting the length wasn’t an option, so the shoes had to be exactly four inches, no more, no less – this was harder to find than it sounds! I didn’t want a generic pair of pointy ivory satin “bridal” shoes that I would never wear again, and sadly Monsieur Louboutin was out of my price range, so after much trial and error – including a brief love affair with some sparkly-bowed platforms (too high) and a flirtation with some hot pink peep-toes (too pink)….
I finally found some rather fabulous metallic sandals from Aldo online. I took them off while I wandered along the beach but otherwise I danced in them all night long.
I wanted my hair to be classic and elegant, but with a relaxed feel to fit in with the laid-back, informal vibe that we wanted the day to have. Carol from Cut N Colours in North Berwick did a fabulous job, giving me a curled, slightly messy bun at the nape of my neck, the perfect perch for my hair flower and veil.
I found Laura Darling of Beauty Artistry online and loved the classic, understated looks on her website. I like to think my eyes are my best feature and Laura did a fantastic job of bringing them out. She used mineral makeup to give me a peachy complexion and gave me subtle smoky eyes, using individual lash extensions to really open them up, and kept everything else fairly neutral. You can tell she did a great job because looking at the photos you don’t see the makeup, just the big cheesy grins.
Red Carpet Worthy
My dress was Maggie Sottero “Phillipa” from Emma Roy in Edinburgh. I had a strong idea in my head of the kind of dress I wanted (I may have looked at one or two [million] dresses online before we actually got engaged). When the assistant saw what I had picked out, she pulled out Phillipa and added it to the pile – it didn’t look like anything much on the hanger but when I put it on, it was gorgeous. The stunning beaded lace and movie-star fishtail shape were exactly what I was looking for, and I loved the creamy-gold colour and corset back (Fin has a weird phobia of buttons, so tiny buttons all the way up the back of a dress would literally have been his worst nightmare!).
A word of advice for brides with corset-backed dresses – it might take five minutes to lace it up in the shop, but for a bridesmaid who’s never done it before, it will take a lot longer. I ended up running really late after I forgot to factor this in so don’t make the same mistake!
I bought some pretty pearl and diamanté drop earrings from Plumbcrazy on etsy and, other than my wedding and engagement ring, that was the only jewellery I wore. I just felt that with all the lace and the beading on the dress, any more glitz would have been overkill.
I was unsure about wearing a veil at first, worried it would be too formal, but after seeing so many natural, almost ethereal shots of brides with veils I decided to go for a simple long veil, and Rock My Wedding‘s Rebecca’s DIY veil tutorial could not have come at a better time. I tweaked Rebecca’s design slightly to make a single-tier veil rather than two-tier (so the veil was U-shaped rather than oval, with the comb attached to the straight edge at the top of the U). My mum and I went to John Lewis and found tulle to match the colour of my dress, got out the sewing scissors and went to work on the living room floor. It looked amazing on the day – you would never know it cost less than twenty quid. I only wore the veil for the ceremony and photos, and it also took an unplanned trip down a stream the following day, so it’s just as well I didn’t spend a fortune on it!
I didn’t wear a tiara – I’m not convinced that tiaras and beaches really go together (unless maybe you’re Miss California, and even then…). I did however wear a hair flower, first under my veil and then later on its own. Boosted by the success of the DIY veil, I DIY’d my own fabric hair flower using a pattern I found on Martha Stewart Weddings. I bought some satin and organza fabrics on sale from a local fabric shop and used some leftover tulle from the veil. The centre of the flower came from a pair of vintage clip-on earrings I found on ebay. I was so chuffed with how it turned out – it was exactly what I was looking for, it just finished the outfit off perfectly and was a total bargain too.
I also had a vintage handbag of my mum’s to keep my perfume and makeup in (except on the day I forgot to put any makeup in it, so it was basically just a bag of perfume – but I really loved the bag!).
Rock My Wedding Fashion Inspiration
The bridesmaids wore dresses that I ordered online from MKM Bridal. We didn’t want to spend a fortune on dresses they would most likely wear only once, but because we had a relatively short engagement (December-July) there wasn’t time to adopt the classic RMW strategy of pouncing on the sales. I researched reviews of MKM and the fabric swatch they sent me looked good, so we sent off the girls’ measurements and hoped for the best. It was a nerve-wracking wait to see if the dresses would be massive/hideous/made out of old shell-suits, but when they arrived they were a lovely fabric, incredibly well-made and only needed tiny adjustments.
I chose a nice fresh green because it just seemed to really fit in with the surroundings and the time of year. However, when I saw them in person I felt like there was LOT of green going on. So, inspired by the same Country Garden Gorgeous wedding and also a picture in RMW’s Charlotte’s Prettiest Maids feature, I made a different flower sash for each of the girls using the same fabric as my hair flower and some lace appliqués from John Lewis to match my dress. The sashes were a last-minute decision but they tied in so well with my dress and really helped to bring everything together. They were such a success that I was actually commissioned to make similar flowers for a friend’s bridesmaids – seriously one of my proudest moments!
The bridesmaids’ shoes were from Miss KG and were purchased in the sale in Debenhams (way before I found shoes for myself!) and they each wore their own jewellery. Our three flowergirls wore dresses from Monsoon.
Perseverance for Pretty
I also handmade our orders of service – which included a little map that Kristen drew for us giving walking directions to the golf club from the church – personalised menu/place names, table plan, table names and activity packs to keep the little ones busy.
The stationery took FOREVER to make because there were so many fiddly steps involved: designing, printing, gluing, cutting, folding, tying, stamping, writing (multiply by 140 guests…). I came really close to throwing everything out the window on several occasions, but I’m so glad I persevered – we literally put our own personal stamp on everything, and it was so satisfying to see it all finished and looking fantastic on the day.
Fin was given a kilt for his 21st birthday (made to measure by independent kiltmaker Veronica Rose) which he has worn to every special event we have attended together ever since, so he was always going to wear that on his wedding day. He hired the same jacket as the other boys – we would have liked to buy him his own one but our budget didn’t stretch (might have had something to do with the six pairs of shoes. Oops). He looked very handsome in his hired one anyway. He wore a blue silk tie, also from M&S, to mark him out as the groom, and finished the outfit off with my Papa’s cufflinks.
The best man and ushers all wore kilts in different tartans (either their own or hired) but they all hired the same grey tweed jackets from the Kilt Hire Co to mark them out as the wedding party. We also gave each of them a tie to coordinate with the bridesmaids’ dresses, from good old Marks and Spencer.
This wasn’t really part of the “official” outfits but on the morning of the wedding we also gave each of the bridesmaids, best man and ushers a pair of brightly-coloured retro sunglasses that I found on ebay (white ones for the bride, obviously). Fin loves bright colours and 80s style so they were a very “us” present, and ended up being in some of our favourite photos of the day.
Photography – Cara and Nye at Lillian and Leonard
Ceremony Venue – St Andrew Blackadder Parish Church
Stationery – DIY plus assistance from a crafty Bridesmaid
Make-up – Laura Darling at Beauty Artistry
Jewellery – Plumbcrazy on Etsy
Veil – DIY courtesy of Rock My Wedding
Bridesmaids dresses – MKM Bridal
Grooms Outfit – Rose Kilts
This W-day has just the right mix of elegance, sophistication and unique details that makes Rock My Wedding the success it is, because it’s you guys reading, being inspired and ultimately sharing your stories with the rest of the community that makes this all worth while.
Plenty more pretty from Kirsty and Fin coming up tomorrow you gorgeous lot you.
Big From The Heart Love