By Louise Baltruschat Hollis
This breezy beach wedding gave me all the feels. I mean what’s not to love about a family wedding, with a humanist ceremony, filled with love and style?
WWW readers Laura and Danny were married on the 11th June 2016 at Harvest Moon Holidays in East Lothian, Scotland. It was super important to them that their nuptials were laid back and bohemian, as well as dog and child friendly. The setting was just stunning, with the sea views and the beautiful marquee providing the perfect blank canvas for pastel coloured décor. Much of their day was crafted by their loved ones, which gave a wonderfully personal feel too.
One of my favourite elements has to be the whimsical florals featuring huge coral peonies, what a sight to behold. The ribbon chandelier was another wonderful touch and really worked as a centrepiece to the marquee. Laura chose to wear Daughters of Simone ‘Winnie’, with it’s off the shoulder lace boho look. She looked stunning in it, teamed with a ribbon adorned flower crown. Danny chose a dapper kilt and the maids wore floral dresses, such loveliness.
Many thanks goes to The Curries for sharing these extraordinary photographs.
THE PROPOSAL | Was perfect and personal to us. We started our little family with our gorgeous black lab, Reggie, and around 4 years later our beautiful son, Finn arrived. So it only seemed right to include them. So on the morning of my birthday, 7th August 2015, Danny, Finn, Reggie and I went for a walk up Blackford hill. This is somewhere we go a lot as a family and on our own to walk, bike, run and is very close to where we live in Edinburgh. It has stunning views. So off we went, before I knew it we were at our little spot, Finn was in a backpack, Reggie wandering and Danny was down on one knee, proposing in the sun. I was shocked. The ring was beautiful and chosen by Danny. It is a stunning sapphire with diamonds on a gold band. This was particularly special as Danny knew how much I loved a Sapphire ring that was my Grandmas. We then went out for lunch with our families and Danny had a special meal planned that night at The Honours. We went to Provence a few days later for our summer holiday! Perfect! Danny said after the proposal he had picked there as it was always somewhere we could go back to. We do.
THE VISION | Danny and I are fairly laid back people, and agreed immediately that we wanted somewhere to reflect this. My favourite place is the beach and we were both sure that we wanted to marry on a beach if possible. We agreed that a bohemian sort of vibe would suit both our personalities. We love to jump in our campervan and go on adventures. Another definite from the beginning was being able to have Reggie the dog there. As soon as we saw Harvest Moon Holidays we knew it was perfect. It encompassed everything we wanted, the stunning beach, amazing glamping, and allowing us to have a weekend of celebrations with our friends and family.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | Planning started almost immediately, we picked our first dance whilst travelling from Provence in the camper van. When we got back we started to look at venues. Danny took rather a long time to propose 😉 so I was keen to get going and we both thought the following summer would be the best time. We quickly realised that we needed to get the venue booked – it is unbelievable how quickly they get booked up! There was a lot of fun planning as well as a little stress at times!
BUDGET | We did not want to spend a fortune on the wedding. We therefore did a lot of the organisation ourselves. However, very quickly the cost grew! We were lucky to have a very supportive family.
THE VENUE | Harvest Moon Holidays was everything we wanted and more. The first time we visited we met Alex, who showed us around. He was very laid back and accommodating. Answering all of our questions and continued to do so throughout the whole planning process. Answering emails immediately, we really could not have done it without him. The beach is just stunning. The accommodation includes safari tents and treehouses and they have a marquee which was brand new and lovely! A blank canvas for our ideas. The site itself had lots of little quirky beach details which we loved. We had Harvest Moon from the Friday to the Monday, which allowed us to spend the most amount of time with our family and friends.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | My dress was from Jean Jackson Couture in Manchester. The designer was Daughters of Simone, my dress was called ‘Winnie’. Flic and Rebecka at Jean Jackson were just so lovely and made me feel comfortable and beautiful. They were the most friendly, easy going and professional, I could not have asked for nicer people to buy my dress from. Jewellery wise I wanted gold and something quite natural. I went for a beautiful druzy gold bangle from Rachel at Saressa Designs and little gold feather studs from Lisa Angel. I wanted flat gold, simple shoes and went for some sandals from Office in the end. Jasmine is my favourite scent so my perfume was perfect!
FINDING THE DRESS | I had never looked at dresses before we got engaged. But as soon as we were, I was straight on Pinterest. I quickly came across an Australian designer – Anna Campbell and loved her dresses. I realised that the only shops in the UK that seemed to stock her dresses were in Dublin and Manchester. I therefore thought this is silly, I will have a look in Edinburgh first. However, could not get them out of my head. So I spoke to Flic on the telephone and made an appointment.
Mum and I headed to Manchester early one Saturday AM in November. Greeted, as mentioned by the amazing Flic and Rebecka. I tried on lots of Anna Campbell and was beginning to narrow down as they are all beautiful. I decided to try on another dress, to have something to compare to. Winnie was that dress, immediately when I put it on, I thought ‘oh dear’ as I loved it. Mum agreed. It was flattering and probably more in keeping with my style and the venue.
We went for some tapas and a much needed glass of wine! I desperately messaged my bridesmaids as I wanted to make the decision that day. Flic called and said they had a cancellation, so I went immediately back and tried on again! That was all I needed to make the decision that Daughters of Simone, Winnie was the one.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Danny already had his kilt and jacket, which we both loved. The tartan was dark isla. He did buy a new shirt for the occasion from Pink and some new Timberland boots. He wore his Dads watch and cufflinks.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | We both always knew we did not want any traditional readings but wanted what was personal to us. We both wrote our own vows and had a humanist wedding which explained how we met. Danny’s sister, Caz, read a traditional poem while we did handfasting with tartan scarves. My 2 bridesmaids, Francesca and Christine read a poem called ‘A lovely love story’ by Edward Monkton which featured 2 dinosaur’s. My sister’s boyfriend, Kieran, is in a fab band, Jakil and has the most amazing voice. He very kindly sang for us, the song was Otis Redding ‘Sitting on the dock of the bay’. He sang whilst we signed the register and it really was one of my favourite moments of the whole day. We had a piper that piped us all on to the beach and off it, magical.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 3 stunning bridesmaids, my 2 sisters, Alex and Francesca and my best friend, Christine. I could not have asked for more supportive, amazingly thoughtful girls. They all wore floral dresses from ASOS. Francesca and Christine both live in London so there was a lot of dress chat on whatsapp. I did not mind on the dresses and wanted them all to be comfortable. We wanted them to fit in with a bohemian sort of vibe and something that was along the colour scheme that developed which was peaches, corals, green and some blue in the end. They all looked absolutely beautiful.
I also had 2 flower girls, Ruby and Phoebe, our 2 nieces. They were gorgeous in little dresses from Monsoon. My son Finn and our nephew, Ollie were our page boys and had very cute little kilt and jackets on.
THE FLOWERS | What can I say about the flowers, they really made the whole wedding! They brought all of the colours, and whole vibe of the wedding together and were just stunning. I could not have asked for anything more. Di and her husband from Myrtle and Bracken were amazing. Di and I had met before the wedding and discussed ideas. I had seen a picture of a tripod type structure for the beach ceremony and Di pulled it off and more. It was so beautiful and rustic with a lot of driftwood and seaweed from the beach. Di did the bouquets which were so beautiful and my floral crown which had ribbons flowing down the back. The flowers and hanging structures in the marquee were equally as breath-taking and we both feel incredibly lucky to have had Myrtle and Bracken involved in our day.
THE CAKE | We did not want to spend a great deal on the cake and both loved the look of the naked wedding cakes. Our caterer Lazy Sunday did our cake and it looked and tasted absolutely beautiful. Once again it was perfect and just as I had envisioned. Lazy Sunday were amazing, Kasia, was on hand to help with anything and everything. The food was absolutely delicious and the presentation was stunning. We had so many comments from guests about just how yummy it was. We decided to go for lots of sharing platters of our favourite food for starter and a yummy BBQ for the main. We had pokes of fish and chips in the evening, another favourite of ours. The presentation, food, staff everything just fantastic.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Our photographers were absolutely amazing – The Curries. The loveliest couple, whose photos are just unbelievable and exactly what we were looking for. They are very natural and Gill and Chris were so good and being in all of the right places, yet, you would not have known they were there. It was like having friends at our wedding. Stunning. We are just awaiting our album and can not wait.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | A lot of the other details and décor were organised by us with the help of our friends and family. My auntie and a friend made the bunting which we had around the site. We had a sweetie table, a guest book table with some props and a polaroid camera for guests to take a snap and stick it down. A lovely wee water station. Harvest Moon supplied the lighting in the marquee, we added a little bit of festoon lighting to the outside and some white lanterns in the marquee. Danny’s sister, Caz, very kindly did all of our blackboard signs and Christine my bridesmaid did the framed ones. All of our friends and families help was invaluable and we could not have done it without them.
We made little welcome packs for each of the safari tents and treehouses. Given we have a son of our own and many of our friends have kids we wanted it to be as kiddie friendly as possible. So we hired a bouncy castle and outdoor games as well as having some toys in the marquee. We also had some kiddie favours with colouring books and masks. Our adult favours were little trolley keyrings with antique keys attached. The trolley keyrings are very close to our hearts and raised money for Simpsons Special Care Babies.
A lot of our little touches were bought from Etsy, Not on the High street, Amazon, Hobbycraft, Paperchase, Ikea and TK Max.
On the Sunday of our wedding weekend we invited all of our friends and family back to Harvest Moon for pizza and games. Unfortunately the weather was not great, but we still had the most amazing pizza from a very cool retro van!
THE HONEYMOON | Given we have a son we took a long time to decide what to do about our honeymoon. We were very lucky to have a Grandma and a Granny who very kindly took care of him for us. We went to Koh Samui, Thailand. We stayed in the Six Senses, which was just paradise. Our guests very kindly contributed to our honeymoon, and we could not have been more grateful.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | So many… the morning of the wedding with my bridesmaids and Mum, walking on to the beach and seeing Danny for the first time, when Kieran sang, the speeches, a crazy bounce on the bouncy castle with my besties, Danny and I’s shoot with Gill and Chris, our first dance to Neil Young-Harvest Moon (picked before the venue!), dancing with friends and family into the night….
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Try not to let the wedding take over too much in the planning stages, perhaps have designated evenings that you do things together and others where you do not talk about it. Try not to stress the little things, the day goes so quick, enjoy every moment. Make it yours and nobody else’s.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographers | The Curries
Venue | Harvest Moon Holidays
Florist | Myrtle and Bracken
Caterer | Lazy Sunday
Humanist | Humanist Celebrant
Bar | Cork and Cask
Pizza van | The Big Blu
Bridesmaid dresses | ASOS
Flower girl dresses | Monsoon
Page boy kilts | Heritage of Scotland
Brides hair and bridesmaids hair | Natalie Calder from Dickson Reid
Brides make up | Carrie from Lauren Gollan
Rings | Laing the Jeweller
Shoes | Office
Bride and bridesmaid bracelets | Saressa Designs
Bride gold head band | Avigail Adam
Earrings | Lisa Angel
Gifts for the flower girls and page boys | Not On The Highstreet
Dress alterations | Gemma Sargent
Invitations | Lucy Loves Paper
Bouncy castle | The BCM
Piper | Buchan Bagpiping
Perfume | Acqua Di Parma – Gelsomino Nobile
Toilets | Sitting Pretty UK
Honeymoon | Mr and Mrs Smith
Oh my, so special.
Laura and Danny, I cannot thank you both enough for sharing your wonderful wedding story here today xo Lou
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