It can often take a lot of guts to plan a wedding out of the norm but to cancel your current wedding plans and re plan is a touch choice. I should know as it happened to us and it is a heart wrenching decision to make. This bride and groom scrapped the big church nuptials and instead booked an outdoor wedding on the Isle of Skye with 16 guests after seeing a wedding on WWW. That’s something that makes my heart glow and reaffirms why I run this whole shebang.
WWW readers Catherine and Rob tied the knot on the 19th September 2015 at Hotel Eilean Iarmain and held their ceremony in the grounds. The setting was remarkable and the whole affair was just so romantic. Plus they achieved the whole celebration on a £5000 budget, amazing!
Catherine wore a tea length gown by Ronald Joyce which looked so dreamy and the gents all wore tartan ties, fabulous. Wheat and lavender arrangements all added to the homely vibe.
Thanks so much to Sarah Beth Photo for sharing these joy filled images with us.
THE PROPOSAL | Christmas Day 2014, I’d been at work all day and Rob surprised me with a beautiful antique sapphire engagement ring, which he had ingeniously hidden inside a Christmas cracker, at our home after we had opened all our Christmas presents. I was not expecting it at all, and I managed to say yes through floods of tears!
THE VISION | Both Rob and I were very keen to have a small intimate wedding, however unfortunately we didn’t communicate this well or strongly enough with my parents and we ended up heading down the road of a church wedding with a marquee in my parents garden. Every decision that was made, from the choice of flowers to the grooms attire became a bit of a battleground, and whenever I thought of our dream day, all I could feel was horror and dread. Rob and I got to the point of no return and sat down with my parents to tell them that we no longer wanted the big wedding that we were busy planning. Rob and I had already discussed our dream wedding, and both decided that a small family wedding on the Isle of Skye was where we could see ourselves celebrating with our loved ones. I have to be honest and say that it did not go down well with my parents. As his only daughter, my Dad was so upset that he wasn’t going to get to walk me down the aisle in front of all his friends and family, but I would tell all brides out there planning to make sure you choose the day you and your fiancée want and not to be swayed by the pressures that parents may put upon you. Remember it is your day!
THE PLANNING PROCESS | Once we had decided to change our plans we had about 3 months to organise a small wedding in Scotland, over 500 miles away from home. All our suppliers were incredibly supportive when we told them of our change in plans, and most were over the moon for us. We took a trip to Skye to track down the ideal place for our wedding and to meet our celebrant, Sonja Eckl-Riel. After looking at a large number of hotels all around the island, we hit jackpot and found our dream location!
Rob and I used Pinterest to give us ideas as to what we liked and didn’t, which made it very simple to keep track of inspirational photographs to be able to share with our suppliers.
BUDGET | Our first wedding didn’t really have a budget, so much of it would have been covered by my parents, and we never really had “the conversation” about money.
Our second wedding cost approx. £5000, but we haven’t added it all up exactly, and with a little help from Rob’s parents, we managed to foot the cost on our own.
THE VENUE | Hotel Eilean Iarmain, Sleat Peninsula, Isle of Skye. When we went to visit for the first time, both Rob and I were blown away by the view from the front of the hotel looking back over towards the mainland over the Sound of Sleat. All the staff at the hotel couldn’t do enough for us and the food was simply out of this world.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | My dress was Ronald Joyce, Rosalinda, a full lace A-line dress with crystal belt detail and a sheer Illusion top with cap sleeve for more coverage. I teamed it with a birdcage veil I found on Etsy, and finished it off with an Isle of Skye tartan shawl. My shoes were originally going to be blue (my something blue!), however I was eventually persuaded to be a little more traditional, and bought a lovely pair of ivory Court Shoes from Rainbow Club.
FINDING THE DRESS | I was lucky; I only tried about five dresses before I found “the one”. I was very definite in my idea of wanting a tea length wedding dress, but was disappointed with the selection on offer in the shop. When the manager advised me that they could actually shorten a standard length dress that reinvigorated my search. I tried on the Rosalinda dress and immediately fell in love! In its traditional form it was incredibly heavy, but when some of the weight was taken off the bottom it was my perfect dress!
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Rob knew he didn’t want to go too formal, and needed something to match the Isle of Skye tartan tie we had chosen. This proved a little harder than originally planned, but he looked amazingly dapper in a blue checked Ben Sherman suit, teamed with a grey herringbone tweed waistcoat and a gold pocket watch (which was a family heirloom).
THE READINGS & MUSIC | As we had a humanist ceremony, there were no hymns, or traditional music, but I walked down the aisle with my dad to Glasgow Love Theme from Love Actually.
We had readings done by my two close friends; a beautiful reading by Toria of the song Time in a Bottle by Jim Croce, the lyrics of which resonated strongly with Rob and myself. The second reading was done by Rob’s godmother and Aunt Diana, who read Maybe, Anon. Our final reading was done by my friend Liz, who did an amazing version of the Apache blessing. We gave a great deal of thought to our readings and who should do them, and all of our choices nearly brought me at least to tears!
Out first dance, was probably as far from traditional as you can get, and we let our guests chose it for us. We ended up strutting our stuff to Run DMC, Walk this Way!
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | With all the changes that had taken place with the planning process and the vastly reduced numbers we had decided upon for the day, I thought I would look pretty silly with all half the congregation following me down the aisle, so “my girls”, Liz and Toria weren’t traditional bridesmaids, but both did readings and spent the morning with me preparing.
THE FLOWERS | One of the ideas that I maintained through the planning process was the link of how important my heritage is to me, being a farmer’s daughter I had already decided on a bouquet of wheat, interspersed with lavender and roses. The buttonholes were also lavender with wheat and all were put together in Lincolnshire (the bouquet itself took a lot of looking after on the two day journey to Scotland) by a florist friend of my mother, Carole McAllister.
THE CAKE | We decided that we were not going to transport a large cake to Skye for so few people (we had originally ordered our cake to feed 120, not 16), so we spoke to Carol, our cake maker, and asked her to provide it for our celebration on our return. We took a simple Marks and Spencer two tiered cake with us to Skye, which the hotel did a fabulous job of decorating it simply and beautifully.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | What can we say about our photographer, but that she was amazing! We had already chosen Sarah Beth before we changed our plans and we knew how difficult it would be to find another photographer who we loved as much as Sarah, so we kept the date primarily to ensure we could still have Sarah. When we told her of our change of plans she was over the moon for us, and immediately said she would be honoured to join us in Skye to photograph our big day. With such a small group of people she immediately hit it off with everybody, and it made all the photos so much more natural as everyone was really relaxed with her around, and completely forgot she was taking photos! Everyone got on so well with her that she is still in contact with all our guests on Facebook and did one of our guest’s own UK wedding a couple of weeks ago!
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Very simple, we used the hotel’s conservatory with loads of fairy lights, and the aisle decorations doubled up as our table decorations. All the flowers were in jam jars which we had pre-prepped before we went to Scotland. The colours were a number of shades of lavender with rustic touches linked back to the theme of wheat and harvest.
THE HONEYMOON | We had a mini-moon week in Skye after the wedding, but we have yet to book our honeymoon, we’re currently looking at New York via Iceland to see the Northern Lights, which is one off the bucket list for both me and Rob.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Our closest friends and family making such a mammoth journey to spend our special day with us. On the day there are so many to choose from, for Rob the sight of me arriving at the end of the aisle, for me the overwhelming happiness I felt once I was standing at Rob’s side starting the ceremony. There were a number of hilarious moments: my dad’s clashing tie and shirt (we hadn’t pre-warned him of the tie choice as it was a little hit and miss as to whether he would even wear a tie!); the best man for almost being late for the ceremony than the bride; the band mistaking my brother for my husband and making us dance! But all of these are what make the day amazing and the best day of our lives!
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Do not be afraid to stand up and fight for the wedding that you and your fiancée want. We were worried about the cost, and trying to shoulder the burden, but I think our wedding is proof that you can have an amazing day for very little relative cost. What should be the most important thing is that you get to spend the day with those that you love.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Location | Hotel Eilean Iarmain
Celebrant | Sonja Eckl-Riel
The dress | Proposals in Grimsby
The photographer | Sarah Beth Photography
Hair | Rosalind at Scizzors in Broadford
Favours | Skye Soap
Wedding accommodation | Clan Donald
I for one think that Catherine and Rob made the right choice, what a gorgeous day. Thanks so much to them both for sharing their story here on WWW xo Lou