Emily and Daniel were married on Friday 13th January at the beautiful Moorpark House in Kilbirnie, West Scotland. They wanted their day to be a reflection of their New Zealand and Scottish backgrounds, and their love of vintage.
Emily wore the most diving 1950s vintage dress, birdcage veil and 1940s hollywood glamour inspired hair and make up, she looks stunning. Whist Daniel wore a traditional kilt in his grandmothers tartan.
I so love this glamorous and fun wedding, with so many personal touches. Thanks so much to the fantastic Silver Photography for sharing his images with us today, here is what he had to say about the day;
“On the 13th January (a Friday, no less), after what seemed like months of non-stop rain and general murkiness, I found myself driving along the fringes of the Clyde Muirshiel Park in beautiful sunshine to the wedding of Emily and Daniel at Moorpark House Hotel. To see the sun at any point in the year in Scotland is a blessing, and at that time of the year it was especially wonderful, but on a midwinter day such as this it was scraping along the tops of the trees and hills and I knew I’d have my work cut out dealing with the harsh shadows.
I knew that this wedding was going to be a great one from the first time I met Emily and Daniel. They were incredibly relaxed about the whole thing and it was very clear to me that the emphasis of the day was to have a good time. They didn’t seem overly preoccupied with all of the formalities and traditions a wedding can sometimes bring and, instead, they wanted to do things their way”
Names… Emily and Dan
Wedding Date... Friday 13th January 2012 (we not superstitious!)
The proposal… Dan proposed in a beautiful spot on the banks of Loch Lomond, near where I grew up. I love that it will never change, when we’re old and have been married for decades, we will go there and it will be just the same as when Dan asked me to marry him. I (unknowingly) sabotaged the proposal day, making plans to meet my friends for lunch 2hrs drive from where Dan needed me to be and we were so late back he nearly changed his mind! He had to tell my friends what he had planned and they all worked together to get me there before we lost the daylight, without me guessing what was going on, so he could propose. He gave me his mums engagement ring which meant so much to me.
The vision for the day… Dan is from New Zealand and I’m from Scotland so we wanted the day to reflect both our backgrounds. We decided on a traditional Scottish piper and ceilidh band, but asked Dans brother and sister to sing Pokare Kare Ana (a Maori love song) during our ceremony, and used Maori words with lovely meanings for our table names. A friend made us a design incorporating the Scottish thistle and New Zealand silver fern which we used in the background of all of our stationary and on our place settings and table plan. We also both have a love for all things vintage and the venue we chose was the perfect backdrop for a vintage inspired day.
The planning process… I think planning our wedding was fairly simple, which was good as we were planning it from London! I think the key is to make a decision and move on, or you can go crazy over-thinking things! We started with a guest list, which dictated the size of venue we needed and we took it from there. We both love vintage and the glamour of days gone by so it was fairly easy to come up with the look and feel we wanted for our wedding. We found we both wanted the same things for the day, like a traditional piper and non-traditional vows, so it was not difficult to plan the day together.
Budget… Though we didn’t have a ‘budget’ wedding, we did a lot of things ourselves like the invites and stationary, and my mum made all of our table centre pieces which were beautiful and half the price of buying them made up. I collected silver trays and crystal bowls from charity shops which my mum filled with flowers and candles so all the tables looked slightly different but with the same vintage feel. Not only do you save money doing it yourself – it also means you get exactly what you want and makes your wedding personal. My bridesmaids took me on a jewellery making course for my hen do which I really enjoyed and it inspired me to make bracelets as favours for all the ladies at our wedding. My vintage dress also worked out cheaper than buying a new dress – and since it fitted me perfectly I didn’t need to pay for alterations which helped keep the cost down.
The venue… Our venue was Moorpark House in Kilbirnie, West Scotland. I looked at loads of venues on the internet and a lot of them look very similar! When I found Moorpark House I just had a feeling that I really wanted to see this one – I’m not sure what it was, but it just felt right. It wasn’t until we viewed the venue that I found out I had a family connection to the house, descending from the original owners through my mums family who were from the area. What we really loved about Moorpark is that it is completely exclusive to the wedding and they have 12 lovely bedrooms so our wedding party could stay with us for the weekend along with a few of our friends that had travelled from the Far East and the USA to be with us on the day. We also loved that the venue had great photographic opportunities inside incase the weather was awful, and the big log fires were perfect for keeping our guests cosy at our winter wedding. We had a lot of international guests at our wedding so the venue was a great location, being within 20mins of Glasgow international airport.
The dress and accessories… My dress was from the 1950s, with full skirt and sweetheart neckline in lace with scalloped braiding and short layers of fine netting on the skirt. I chose a birdcage veil to complete the vintage look and wore my mums necklace and earrings as my something borrowed. My shoes were by Diane Hassall and I loved the lace peep toe and tulle disks with delicate sparkle detail. My dress was my something old and my shoes were my something new. I wanted my hair and make up to reflect the glamour of the dress and accessories and chose a 40′s inspired up-do with old Hollywood-glamour style make up.
Finding the dress… I really love vintage and vintage inspired clothing, especially 50s, so I don’t know why I didn’t just go for a vintage dress in the first place! I tried a couple of unsuccessful trips to modern wedding dress shops, but found the styles were very similar and not flattering for my shape (I’m very short). It was so difficult trying on the samples in the wrong size (and 2ft too long!) and trying to picture how they would sit and fit in the the right size. When I visited Elizabeth Avey I was in heaven! The most beautiful vintage dresses and nearly all the right size for me! The only hard part was picking which gorgeous dress I liked best. I also loved that once I had decided on the dress, Elizabeth wouldn’t sell it to me then and there – she put it away so no-one else would see it, and sent me away to think about it overnight to make sure I’d picked the right one. I loved the whole experience and would definitely recommend this place for any vintage bride or a bride that’s just looking for something a bit different. The dress felt really special on the day like it held the memory of the last time it was worn on someone else’s big day and I like the idea that one day maybe a daughter or granddaughter of mine might want to wear it on their wedding day.
Groom’s attire… Dan is from New Zealand, but has a Scottish grandmother and he loves to wear a kilt whenever he can get the chance! He chose to wear a traditional kilt in his grandmothers family tartan, the Gunn, with black Bonnie Prince Charlie jacket and midnight blue bow tie. His two best men wore the same and we loved how many of our English friends and friends from overseas took the chance to try out a kilt for the day! We took our midnight blue colour scheme for our bridesmaids dresses from the blue in his tartan and highlighted the red in the tartan with berries in our flowers and red lipstick and nail varnish for the bridesmaids and me. We also used this tartan throughout our wedding, on the invites and other stationary, on the bouquets and used it during our hand binding. The tartan ribbon on my bouquet was my something blue on the day.
Readings and music… We had a piper play as the guest arrived, and a pianist during the ceremony who accompanied Dans brother, Luke, who sang The Rose for the bridal entrance. He also accompanied Dans brother and sister singing Pokare Kare Ana whilst the wedding schedule was signed. We were led from the ceremony by the piper playing Mairi’s Wedding. In the evening reception we had a live ceilidh band to dance the night away Scottish style! We had a humanist ceremony which meant the ceremony itself was very personal with stories of how we met, the proposal etc. but could not contain any religious readings or hymns. Two of our bridesmaids said readings for us which we felt really reflected us as a couple, ‘Oh the places you’ll go’ by Dr Zeuss and an excerpt from ‘Captain Correlli’s Mandolin’ by Louis de BerniÃ¨res. Our celebrant also read a blessing by James Dillit Freeman at the end of our ceremony. We wrote our own vows and heard each others for the first time in the ceremony. We also incorporated a traditional celtic hand binding into our ceremony.
Beautiful bridesmaids… My four lovely bridesmaids were my sister Rebecca, Dans sister Laura and my two best friends from school, Louise and Alexis. They are all very different sizes, shapes and colourings so finding the right bridesmaids dress was a challenge – not to mention one of them lives in New Zealand and didn’t arrive in the UK until just before the wedding! We took the colour inspiration (midnight blue) from Dans tartan which turned out to be a great colour on all the girls, but chose two different styles of dress. Two of the girls wore strapless knee length dresses from Coast, and the others wore maxi dresses with crossover v necklines from Dessy. I was very lucky to find these dresses in the exact colour match and very similar fabrics! I tied the two looks together with matching sparkly brooches under the bust which I found on eBay and bought different 50′s diamante necklaces for them each to wear. Hair and make up had an old style glamour feel and the vintage furs kept the girls warm during the outside photographs while adding to the glamorous look.
The flowers… Simple cream roses with red berries gave a wintery feel. The bouquets were all bound with ribbon in a matching tartan to the wedding party’s kilts. I chose white marabou feathers to surround my bouquet as I love the way they move and they seemed to echo the soft layers of my dress.
The cake… We had a simple three layer chocolate cake with white icing and button detail from Marks and Spencer’s which we decorated with the same tartan ribbon. The cake topper was switched at the last minute from flowers matching the bouquets to one that Dan had found of a rugby player groom being tackled by his wife! I didn’t see this until the cake cutting – it was quite a surprise!
The photographer… We chose Trevor Wilson from Silver photography because we really liked his relaxed, reportage style. We were quite conscious that the day goes by very quickly and we didn’t want to be taken away from our guests for hours to have our photo’s taken in unnatural poses, but rather have an account of the day as it actually happened. On the day itself Trevor felt more like one of the wedding guests than the man with the big scary camera which meant we were completely relaxed in all of our photo’s – no stiff, self conscious smiles!
The details and decor… Our venue was gorgeous, with big log fires, dark wood panelling and other beautiful details so it needed only a minimum of decoration. I like things to be a bit eclectic so I collected silver trays and crystal dishes and bowls from charity shops which were filled with cream roses, red berries, diamantes and candles for our centre pieces and decoration throughout the venue. For our table plan I collected different silver photo frames, one for each table, which were laid out in the hallway of our venue to show the guests which table to sit on. This theme continued onto the dinner tables with each of the ladies having a different mini silver photo frame as their place settings that they could take away as a keep sake of the day along with the bracelet favours I’d made. Miniture Scottish whiskeys were the favours for the men which doubled as their place settings. Instead of a traditional guestbook, we asked guests to write us a message on bits of card that matched our blue colour scheme and had a Polaroid camera floating around that guests could snap away on. The photo’s and messages were dropped into a large glass jar throughout the day and evening for us to collect later. We had a great time going through the jar after our wedding and made a fun scrapbook of the messages and Polaroids for us to look back on over the years.
The honeymoon… We decided to start our married life with a big change – and move to New Zealand. We took 5 weeks honeymoon on our way to NZ incorporating Hong Kong, Thailand and Bali, with the highlight being a trip on the Eastern and Oriental Express from Bangkok to Singapore which was truly an amazing experience! Many of our guests contributed to a honeymoon fund allowing us to take a trip of a lifetime to celebrate our wedding.
Memorable moments… Our vows were really memorable as we wrote our own and heard each others for the first time during the ceremony. We both promised different things because in our relationship we are two different halves that make up the whole. I loved hearing Dan putting into his own words what our relationship and marriage means to him. Dan says his most memorable moment was seeing me for the first time as I walked into the ceremony. Another memorable moment was when the pianist played the Imperial March from Starwars before my entrance to the ceremony – Dan’s brothers had joked throughout our engagement that I should come down the isle to it and kept humming it to us when we talked about the wedding. I asked the pianist to play it as a surprise to Dan to make him laugh and relax a little before the ceremony began. He loved it, as did his cheeky brothers, though it left the rest of the guests slightly confused!
Advice for other couples… Go with your instincts and don’t over think the details. You could spend thousands and thousands of pounds getting the ‘best’ of everything, but what people remember from our wedding is our personalised ceremony and a fun, relaxed day. Make the day your own and don’t feel that you need to do things because of tradition or because other people think you should – it’s your day, do it your way!
Credit where credit’s due…
Thanks so much to Emily and Daniel for sharing their beautiful wedding with us today :-) Love love love… now i want to get all glammed up hehe!! XOXO Lou