Some of you lovely readers may remember real Bride Stef, who was planning a fabulous traditional wedding in Scotland (if not, you can catch up on her planning journey here on Rock My Wedding) and today, finally (!) we are sharing the results of all of her and Ciaran’s hard work.
It’s such a dreamy wedding, with a gorgeous stag motif, tulip bouquets, the prettiest purple Bridesmaids dresses and a knockout Suzanne Neville gown aptly named ‘Stunning.’ And it will have you swooning over Scotland…the scenery is just breathtaking and we’re totally jealous of that soft light – just wow.
Stef The Bride: Oh wow! Hello again!! 🙂
It feel so long since I last wrote to you, because it has been! Too long. For that I apologise. And now I don’t know where to start, I am never going to do everything justice.
In the week leading up to the wedding I was more stressed out that I cared to be, at one point I wasn’t sure we were even going to get the marriage schedule and then the marriage couldn’t go ahead! But with the help of lots of family and friends everything came together…
I loved having a spring wedding because symbolism of new starts and all the lovely florals 🙂 I had won a local competition to have my bouquet and men’s buttonholes made by local florist Kim Dalglish. For the rest of the flowers my mum and I went to a wholesaler and bought lots of my favourite flower: tulips and also some gypsophila and thistles. I had thought I could just whip up simple tulip bouquets for my bridesmaids. Why on earth did I think that?! Fortunately for me I picked up my flower saviour in the form of my friend Katie, when I picked up my photographers from the airport. She had been working at her mum’s florist Shaw of Amersham and had clearly picked up a lot of skills. She did a fabulous job for me and even put together little arrangements which we used on the table for signing the schedule and around Glen Tanar Ballroom. Katie was amazing! So thankful for her!
On the morning of the wedding I was really calm but as soon as I sat in the chair for the wonderful Natalie to do my makeup I started getting butterflies. Natalie did a fabulous job at making us look our most beautiful. My makeup look was centred on my Estee Lauder lipstick in the most beautiful coral, matching my manicure. A girls got to have priorities 😉 The fabulous Siobhan did all of our hair and it was perfect. Exactly what I imagined, a hint of vintage and a whole lot of glamour! Having them both at the house in the morning was great, they kept us calm and on track.
Glen Tanar was the perfect venue with great gardens to walk around the beautiful grounds and a beautiful ballroom to ceilidh the night away with friends and family. I love Royal Deeside, having spent so much time there with family, that there was just no where I would have rather celebrated my marriage. Jane Lees, from Glen Tanar Ballroom, is amazing, making sure we were organised before the day, setting everything up for us on the day as we couldn’t get out there and the keeping us all on schedule on the day.
Elizabeth our caterer and her team were amazing. The food was delicious and beautiful. Our main course was venison which I thought was risky but I refused to go with safe. We went with what we loved and everyone loved it even though there were a few cries of ‘BAMBI’ when people realised what they were eating. I have quite a sweet tooth and the trio of puddings went down a treat! We decided on massive cheese board, for the evening which was amazing and just what was needed. Our cake was a simple purple iced three tier cake, flavoured: lemon, red velvet and victoria sponge. I also bought a bar of fruit cake from M&S to keep the traditionalist happy.
The cake wasn’t high up on my priority but I love cake so I contacted Diane at Cake Friday who made our wonderful cake on my very basic budget. I then searched desperately for a cake topper that went with our theme but I was running out of time. A friend suggested contacting Sugar and Vice to see if they could make us something bespoke based on our stamp that we had used on stationary and Sarah replied ‘Yes, absolutely!’. Within days I had our beautiful cake topper, Sarah had designed it absolutely perfect for us and I was so impressed.
We had the amazing Ghillie Dhu lead us in the dancing and they were epic! They mix up tradition ceilidh music with contemporary chart music and they rocked it! I could not recommend these guys anymore! All my exclamation marks should illustrate my love for them!! 🙂 The most memorable part of the evening was when we were waiting for everyone to get up on the dance floor for the traditional last dance to finish a Ceilidh off, the Orcadian Strip the Willow (epic – just do it if you ever get a chance) and the band were playing Thunderstruck by AC/DC. All the guys just started shouting “THUNDER” at the appropriate points and I think enjoyed that more than the dance that followed. I loved it. They then finished off the evening with Caledonia which meant too much to so many people, especially those that had travelled from a far.
Ciaran’s kilt, waistcoat and jacket were made and tailored for him at Georgian Dress Hire in Aberdeen who I just could not recommend more! They were fabulous and so helpful and their knowledge of kilts and all the bits and bobs is second to none!
I was SUPER fussy with the colours that I wanted the bridesmaids to wear but at the same time my only criteria was it was not to be a full length dress and not too bridesmaidy. A friend found a British dressmaker on Etsy who made the perfect dress and I could choose the shade of purple: perfect! Ellie from Luminia was amazing. We had a fun shopping trip with Eve, the gorgeous flower girl, and we got her outfit from Monsoon and she looks so cute!
If you read my Bride to Be posts you will know that my dress is a Suzanne Neville called Stunning. I love it. I love the lace and I love the organza skirt. However if I am going to be totally honest with you in this post I had started to stress that the skirt was too big for me. I ordered the dress perhaps in a rush and in the following collection the Cherish dress caught my eye. I was brave enough to ask to see it but not brave enough to try it on or to enquire if it was possible to change so I went with Stunning and I did love it. I do love it. But I do now wonder if I would have been happier in the Cherish dress. So ALWAYS ask! But I did enjoy dancing the night away in it.
The veil was ordered very short notice as it had to match the length of my dress, which I got altered. As a result I didn’t get to try on the veil before the day and on the day I found out there was a hole in it between the main fabric and the edging but I wore it anyway and no one was any the wiser! My shoes were Harriet Wilde and I ordered them in the sale and Ruth was so helpful and accommodating when ordering.
I wore drop pearl earrings my mum had bought me for Christmas and a pearl bracelet that I bought when I was on holiday with my family in Mauritius. My head piece is a whole ridiculous story which is normal for me – I had this image pinned on my board of a gorgeous fellow redhead wearing this gorgeous headpiece, I loved it and wanted it. However I couldn’t find anything similar anywhere, especially in my price range. I had scoured the internet and searched everywhere. One day I clicked on the picture lo and behold there was the exact head piece I wanted! Sheila from Sibo Designs was amazing and even added on some pearls for me and sent it over quick sharp as I had left it quite late as per usual! Ciaran bought me a beautiful pearl necklace to open on the morning of the wedding, which finished the look perfectly.
In my real bride posts I wrote about how important my photographers and videographers were, one chance to have all of our loved ones recorded on film, still and moving. Ten21 and White Film Balloon did not let me down! Everyone was bowled over with our wedding film. Alina and Stewart from White Balloon did an amazing job of recording whilst not imposing. I hardly knew they were there! Our time off with Ricky and Shelley from Ten21 was such fun, instead of feeling like we spent time apart from our friends to have the gorgeous portrait photos taken I felt like we got a little time to ourselves with good friends. It was actually such good fun! And the result did not disappoint! We love our photos so much we are slowly covering our new home with them, from small prints in frames to A1 epic canvas of the confetti shot. With 1600 shots we will be covering every inch of our home with them!
Our ceremony was a beautiful joyful occasion. I remember waiting to go into the church and walking down the aisle of the church to get down to Ciaran with the soundtrack of Ron Pope ‘The Right Way’. Watching our film again brings back all the feelings and emotions. Our friends did an amazing job in the band to accompany our songs throughout the ceremony: I do love to belt out a tune which is evident in some of the photos 🙂 Our friends did two readings from the Bible for us Romans 8:31-38 and Colossians 3:12-21. The first means a lot to me and talks about how nothing can separate us from God’s love, just as I know nothing will ever separate Ciaran and I. We signed our marriage schedule to Josh Radin ‘My, My, My’ and walked out the church to the Beatles ‘I wanna hold your hand’. During the service some of the modern hymns we sang were: When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, 10,000 Reasons, The Lord’s My Shepherd and Be Thou My Vision.
The guard of honour as we left the church was a totally surprise. Ciaran is a Boys Brigade officer and the guys organised this without anyone knowing. We both loved it. I couldn’t organise a piper which I was gutted about so was so happy to come out to the beautiful sound! We were so thankful and appreciated it so much.
The Last Last Words
The day went by so fast; it really is true what they say! So my advice, like many brides before me, is taking it all in. Take a few moments every so often to just take it all in with your new husband. After the ceremony we had quite a considerable drive to Glen Tanar so it was fun to chat and take some selfies! We took time between courses of the dinner to go around tables and chat with everyone. Ceilidh dancing the night away meant I could always be with my favourite dance partner.
My only other advice would be to REALLY seriously do not stress about the little things. I got quite wrapped up in the wedding world but I stuck to my guns and spent money on what was important and ignored things that weren’t, some we intentionally saved money on or totally ran out of time to think about! Really all you need is to get legally married and then celebrate it. However you want to do it, go for it!
So for the last time, with all my love and best wishes in your planning!
x x x
Photography by Ten 21 Photography
- Gown & Veil Suzanne Neville
- Boutique Perfect Bridal Rooms
- Jewellery Finnies
- Shoes Harriet Wilde
- Headpiece Sibo Designs
- Florist Kim Dalglish
- Venue Glentanar
- Cake Cake Friday
- Catering Country Flavours
- Bridesmaids Luminia
- Groom & Groomsmen Georgian Dress Hire
- Entertainment Ghillie Dhu
- Videography White Balloon Films