July 11th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
Sweden meets Scotland in today’s charming real wedding between Ellinor and Michael, which brings together traditions from both cultures; from communal singing and lots of speeches on the Swedish side to kilts and ceilidh from the Scots! Marrying outside under the spectacular cherry blossom trees in the venue’s beautiful garden and led by a traditional piper, Ellinor floated down the aisle in a gorgeous tea-length dress made by a talented friend, with a lace illusion bodice and sleeves, and finished off with a delicate veiled headdress.
There are some beautiful details, such as the intricately designed songbook used for the communal singing and the cake of cheese decorated with flowers and grapes. With a rustic vibe and a clever colour scheme to represent the flags of both countries, Ellinor and Michael’s big day manages to feel both glamorously international and charmingly local, with seasonal flowers and lots of handmade elements.
We love the spicy idea for the table centrepieces, using bowls of cardamom, ginger, chilli and so on to indicate the table names rather than written signs, and jam jars collected over the months make the perfect vessels for candles and flowers, even if it does mean eating your weight in jam and chutney before the big day! Tell us more, Ellinor…
With images by A Little Picture.
ellinor says: We got engaged in India, near Darjeeling, where my mother was born. We were travelling through India and I had always wanted to see the place my mother grew up before she came to Sweden. Michael proposed on a Himalayan hilltop overlooking two rivers. It was absolutely beautiful.
We got married on 19th May 2018. We wanted to get married in the spring/early summer because I think that is the most beautiful time of year and the weather is usually better at that time in Scotland! We didn’t know when we booked it that cherry blossom would bloom at that time in the garden of our venue – it turned out to be the perfect time!
We got married (both ceremony and reception) at Kirknewton House Stables, outside of Edinburgh. We chose it because it is a really beautiful place, with a really big garden, and there’s a bit of a rustic feel to it. As you do everything yourself, there are no restrictions in terms of caterers or bar. This meant we had to plan and make everything ourselves, but it allowed us to do exactly what we wanted, including a free bar all night. I would absolutely recommend our venue to other brides and grooms: it is a gorgeous building with a massive garden and you can do what you want with it.
I am originally from Sweden and Michael is Scottish, so our theme was ‘Sweden meets Scotland’. We mixed traditions from the two countries: lots of singing and a lot of speeches (Swedish traditions), and ceilidh and a piper (Scottish traditions). Our colour theme was based on the Swedish flag (yellow and blue) and Scottish flag (white and blue).
For my dress, I always knew I would have a short dress (i.e. tea length) as I don’t think a full-length dress suits my body shape. I also love to dance and couldn’t imagine being on the dance floor in a ball gown or mermaid dress. It turned out to be surprisingly difficult to find one I liked. Most shops only had one or two short dresses. But then my beautiful and amazing friend and bridesmaid Laura said she would make my dress! Laura trained as a costume maker and seamstress and, while she now has a different career, she makes dresses now and again – she made all the bridesmaids’ dresses for our friend’s wedding a couple of years ago! We live in completely different parts of the country so it all involved a lot of planning, but it turned out to be a great excuse to see each other. A great memory is driving to London together to go fabric shopping. There is this street in northwest London lined with fabric shops and we probably went to ten different ones, comparing and haggling. But when we found a particular lace, we knew straight away – that was the one. The dress is absolutely gorgeous and I loved wearing it on the day. I am so lucky to have such an amazing friend.
Michael wore his family kilt that was made for his brother’s wedding a couple of years ago by a kilt maker in Aberdeen. The groomsmen also wore their family kilts.
June 27th, 2018 | Alexis Forsyth
Prepare to go all starry-eyed ladies as this styled shoot is the stuff of dreams; with a spectacular castle – complete with enchanting turrets and beautiful gardens – providing all the romantic feels we could possibly wish for.
Taking place in Scotland, the shoot was led by Ashleigh, a bridal makeup artist, who is based in Edinburgh. With her heart set on organising her very own shoot, Ashleigh brought on board a selection of talented Scottish suppliers who helped bring her vision for a whimsical wedding theme to life.
What we love about this bridal shoot is that it showcases three very distinct, gorgeous bridal looks in a number of different settings at the venue, Carlowrie Castle – from the timeless to the more contemporary. The styling is exquisite, with everything from the flowers and makeup to the accessories all complementing one another beautifully. There’s lots of beauty and fashion inspo to be found further down this page – that we can promise!
So, join us as we escape north of the border and let Ashleigh take us behind the scenes to share all the day’s wonderful highlights.
With images by Karol Makula
ashleigh says: The inspiration behind this shoot was to bring together some of the best suppliers from Edinburgh and the East of Scotland, to create beautiful images of all of our creative visions combined.
There was a very defined whimsical theme put in place early on in the planning stage that was geared towards the romantic, contemporary, effortless, bohemian inspired bride. A mood board was easily created shortly afterwards to translate this theme to the other creatives involved.
As a makeup artist and the owner of Ophelia Bridal Makeup, I also share a real passion for styling. I always look at the bigger picture when selecting images to share of my brides, on my various social media platforms. From the dress, to the hair, to the venue, I like the photos to tell a story beyond the makeup. Through working in the wedding industry, I have made some fantastic contacts and it was one of my goals this year to be more proactive and organise shoots for myself with my own chosen suppliers. Also, I was in the midst of launching Ophelia Bridal Makeup’s sister company, Ophelia Bridal Blooms and I thought it would be a great way to introduce my bouquets to prospective future clients.
The location was probably the first choice I made (along with the photographer) in terms of planning. I have been lucky enough to work at Carlowrie Castle on a few occasions and it is one of my favourite Scottish castles. Carlowrie boasts a contemporary, modern interior, with a traditional, timeless exterior. Coupled with 32 acres of formal gardens and a 150-metre tree lined drive, the decision was far from difficult.
As we were following a relaxed theme for the day, we very much wanted the bouquets to tie in and follow the same vibe. Snapdragon, Edinburgh provided the bouquet and buttonhole used in the outdoor shots. We worked closely with Cathie and Amalia from their Bruntsfield store and agreed that an oversized, hand tied bouquet with lots of foliage would be perfect for the outdoor element of the day.
The shoot was split in to three different looks, so I showcased two of the new bouquets from Ophelia Bridal Blooms. “The Airen” accompanied the second look which was more vampy, with lilac, mulberry and purple peonies. Then the third look was paired with “The Aria” which is a much more feminine bouquet with soft pinks, blush, creams and ivory peonies and roses. The groom, meanwhile, wore a smart and traditional kilt from Bathgate-based The Kilt Studio.
May 27th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
It’s holiday season here on the blog, and as the editorial team take a short break, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding lovely. Usual service will recommence on Monday 4th June 2018 but in the meantime watch out for recaps of some of our favourite Real Weddings from the first half of the year so far.
Drop in every day for the very prettiest, most unique wedding inspiration and – if you are a Brides Up North bride – to see if your real wedding was one of our top picks.
The breath-taking photographs from today’s featured wedding read like an editorial in a fashion magazine. From the bride’s gorgeous 1950s styling – and possibly the largest bouquet we’ve ever seen – to the epic location against a backdrop of ocean blue under a cerulean sky, this is quite literally picture perfect!
Deciding to semi-elope for their big day, Chris and Rebecca invited just a selected few guests for their beautifully intimate wedding on the Isle of Skye.
Following a ‘first look’ moment by the harbour when Chris and Rebecca saw one another for the first time on the wedding day, the small wedding party travelled by boat from Elgol over the sea to a remote area of Skye and trekked into the wilderness for about 20 minutes before finding the perfect place to hold the ceremony. Following the vows there was food, drink, card games and doughnuts for a truly chilled reception.
We just adore the relaxed and romantic spontaneity to this beautiful big day, which shows you can do your wedding day any which way you like. Chris and Rebecca – you’re an inspiration!
With images by John Barwood Photography.
rebecca says: We got engaged in Valencia, Spain in 2014. We were there for Las Fallas festival, which we’d recommend to absolutely everyone whether you’re planning on proposing or not! We put off planning the wedding for so long until finally, in January 2017, we decided to elope and then we managed to plan everything within a couple of months!
We got married on 4th May 2017, which was a Thursday. We chose the date as it was our ninth anniversary of getting together, not because we’re huge Star Wars fans. We got married on the shores of Loch Coruisk in Skye. We’d visited Skye a couple of times together and loved it. When we decided to ‘semi-elope’, Skye was the obvious place to do it. We searched online for inspiration and found out about the location and also Misty Isle Boat Trips, who got us to and from Elgol on the day on a private specially chartered boat. On the way we saw seals and a porpoise!
In terms of a theme, we didn’t feel we really needed to add anything, as the location was enough. We didn’t make a conscious choice on colour scheme either. With only one best man and one bridesmaid and no ‘proper’ venue, we didn’t need to worry too much about coordinating things. On the day, just about everyone (all three of our guests and the groom!) ended up wearing blue, except me, but that was just a huge coincidence.
I wore a vintage 50s dress from Those Were The Days Vintage in Edinburgh. It was the third dress I’d tried on in the first shop I’d visited. I also had a cream jacket made for me my a seamstress, based on a Dior design from the 1950s. I got my vintage reproduction lingerie from What Katie Did.
The best man’s outfit was also from Georgian Dress Hire, while our bridesmaid Sara wore a blue dress from Mango that I helped pick out.
February 20th, 2018 | Aislinn Thompson
When you think of a destination wedding, a sandy beach and an epic sunset usually spring to mind. You know – somewhere hot. But actually, if you live halfway across in the world in San Diego, where could be better for a destination choice than a magnificent castle wedding in bonny Scotland?
Today’s feature couple, Ellen and Ryan, thought just that, enticing 62 guests across the pond to Edinburgh to laird it up at the beautiful Dalhousie Castle. There they laid on Highland Games and fireworks, live entertainment, and surprised guests with a rather unusual ring bearer.
We just love Ellen’s beautiful Watters gown, perfect for swishing around the dancefloor as she desired; and my word, that’s some serious #girlsquad she has – do we count nine beautiful bridesmaids!?!
With images by JPR Shah Photography.
ellen says: We are from San Diego, USA, and we had our first date at Balboa Park, a collective of many different museums, galleries, restaurants and gardens. My favourite place in Balboa Park is the Botanical Garden, so Ryan knew he wanted to propose there. He is known for his off-the-wall ‘what if’ jokes. So, as we strolled through the Botanical Garden, Ryan noted that the building was 100-years-old. He asked me, “What if this building collapsed on us?” Following my eye roll, he then asked, “Or, what if I said I wanted to be with you for the rest of my life?”
Ryan proposed with a family heirloom diamond. His mom had a ring with three diamonds that was passed down to her. Ryan received one of the diamonds from the ring and designed a ring to match our relationship. Ryan knew I would want friends and family to share in the joy of the engagement. So, after the obvious kissing and reply of “absolutely yes!”, he took me to the rooftop of a building where our friends and family were waiting to congratulate us.
We got married on 22nd June 2017. I’m a teacher and, in order to have a destination wedding, we knew we’d need to get married over summer. So, we picked the earliest summer date that allowed us and our guests to get overseas. We knew that, if we were going to get married abroad, we wanted to do so in a place that was different from anywhere we could get married in the USA. Ryan presented me with the idea of getting married in a castle and we found a castle that could house all of the guests overnight, that was close to an airport and that we loved! Dalhousie Castle fit all the bills and we would absolutely recommend it! The staff was incredibly helpful and friendly, and the food and venue were amazing. Our friends and family left our wedding saying it was the best wedding they had ever attended. Our venue was perfect!
We didn’t have a theme, other than ‘Scottish Castle’, which for us was pretty unique. We had a company come and do the Highland Games with our guests, which helped acclimatise everybody to Scottish culture.
We chose purple and grey colour scheme, simply because we really like these colours.
We travelled to Edinburgh a few days before the wedding and stayed at the castle the night before everybody arrived. We hired a bus company, Ladywell Travel, to transport our guests from Edinburgh to the castle.
January 27th, 2017 | Laura McDonagh
Today’s real wedding is a corker – a rose gold theme, bucket-loads of blooms and a bride who looks as though she’s just walked out of the pages of Vogue Sposa (or Unveiled, for that matter!)
Rachel and Josh said ‘I do’ in the stunning surroundings of Ness Botanic Gardens and the greenery and flowers made the perfect backdrop for their perfect day.
Need an injection of light and love on this cold winter’s day? Look no further.
With images by Jo Bradbury.
rachel says: We got engaged on 4th October 2014. We were away for a weekend in Wales and staying in a log cabin. We went on a long beach walk with our dog and Josh proposed on an island just off the beach. We then went back to our lovely log cabin and drank some prosecco, before Josh cooked our favourite meal (mellanzane a la parmagiana). It was pretty perfect!
We chose the 2nd July 2016, as our wedding date; we wanted a summer date to show off our venue’s lovely flowers and blooms. It was also a few weeks after my final exams and therefore seemed a good date to pick!
We got married in Ness Botanic Gardens. We fell in love with it the moment we saw it – we knew we wanted an outdoor wedding and the flowers and setting were just so, so gorgeous. We both love being outdoors and got very excited about how beautiful the photographs would be with all the flowers and greenery!
We wanted a laidback, romantic style wedding. The bridesmaids wore pink with gold shoes and the venue décor was blush pink in places. The groomsmen wore blue or grey suits; we felt this would be a great colour to complement the blush colours.
The colour scheme was rose gold: we had rose gold invites, and the bridesmaids’ dresses and the venue décor tied in with this beautifully. There was a lot of pinning on Pinterest to get my ideas together!
My wedding dress was an Ellis 11330 design from Elegance Bridal on the Wirral – the ladies there were so lovely and helpful from start to finish. I knew I wanted a fitted dress and thought the fishtail/mermaid style would be ideal. Initially I wanted a dress with lace sleeves, but after trying on a few I felt the sweetheart neckline was more flattering. I loved the delicate lace and beading on the dress; I just didn’t want to take it off!
Josh wore a Hugo Boss suit and the fit was perfect, so no tailoring needed – phew! We knew we loved the look of a blue suit and he looked fantastic.
The bridesmaids wore blush pink dresses from a brand called Laced inLove purchased through ASOS. They were so beautiful and also very reasonable in terms of price. The groomsmen wore their own suits; luckily, they all had suits in a blue or grey hue.
December 12th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
“Be organised” – these are the words of wisdom from today’s bride who planned her beautiful big day with military precision. The high level of organisation meant that when the wedding day arrived, both Hetty and her beau Fred could just relax and enjoy the proceedings.
Making the day both pretty and personal, the crafty duo incorporated special touches through handmade décor and chose a venue that will always remain close to their hearts.
With images by AnnaJoy Photography
hetty says: Fred had initially planned to propose during a surprise long-weekend in Paris that he’d organised for our sixth anniversary. Unfortunately, he was called for jury service for an eight-week trial around four weeks before our anniversary so the trip was cancelled. We still had a special anniversary weekend at home in London and Fred popped the question in the Italian Garden of Kensington Gardens, after a long walk through Hyde Park. It was a beautiful, sunny winter’s day in London and was absolutely perfect. Better than Paris! After I’d said yes, he took me for afternoon tea at the Renaissance Hotel at St Pancras Station, marrying my love of afternoon tea with his love of trains!
Our wedding day was 30th April 2016. We were married in St Salvator’s Chapel at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. We actually met for the first time in the chapel, singing in the University Chapel Choir. We met on the first Sunday of fresher’s week in our first year, and sang together throughout all four years of university. We graduated in 2012 but the chapel is still symbolically a huge part of our relationship. We know the organist and university chaplain very well, so it was an obvious choice for our wedding. The chapel is also stunningly beautiful, which helps!
Our reception was at Lower and Upper College Halls, opposite the chapel in the main university quad. The wedding breakfast was in Lower College Hall, and then then ceilidh and dancing upstairs in Upper College Hall. We had actually both sat exams in those rooms over the course of our university career so it took a bit of imagination to see it as our wedding venue, but the lure of having the reception and wedding all within the beautiful setting of the quad was too much to resist.
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