Hello there lovely readers. I have a mid-week dose of prettiness for you today with a charming handmade church wedding in St Andrews, Fife. Fiona, a medical student and Ollie, an RE teacher, tied the knot on 12 July 2014 after meeting at St Andrews university during Fiona’s first week as a ‘wide-eyed fresher’. The couple planned the entire wedding in just seven months.
“We wanted the reception to be simple, pretty and homemade. We loosely themed the day as a relaxed afternoon tea party. I had a thousand and one ideas every day but with a budget in mind and just seven months we tried hard to stick to things we thought our guests might really appreciate and remember.”
Photography Copyright (c) 2015, Anna Urban
The pretty floral arrangements are by Catherine at Blue Poppy Florist.
“I wanted a wild-flower bouquet in delicate pastel colours and Catherine really cleverly worked through the strong blue from the bridesmaids dresses.
For the church, Catherine suggested that we order some flowers wholesale. We ordered a box of gypsophila from Flowers by Clowance and split it into bottles to hang in the aisle.”
“I love sewing but I’m definitely an amateur and it was much easier than you might think. I filled each bag with “survival tools” for the day – mints, pretty tissues, lip balm, body spray and a miniature bottle of their favourite drink.”
Anna Urban was the couple’s photographer.
“We really couldn’t recommend her more. She was so discreet that a few people said they didn’t realise she was even at the ceremony until they saw her photos of those precious moments. After the ceremony, we found that our spot for taking photos had been double-booked and we really just wanted to get to the party. I was amazed at what Anna managed to put together with such a short time and just a road-side rose bush left as a setting!”
“My shoes were a last minute purchase from Shuh. They were really cute but not all that comfortable after a while. I actually had white platform flip-flops as back-up for the reception. It sounds really tacky but my feet were so much happier once I’d swapped!”
“I borrowed a full length veil from a friend for the ceremony. I wasn’t sure whether to wear one but I’m glad I did. I guess it’s your only chance!”
“My auntie Fiona really kindly made my garter using a little material from the inside hem of my mum’s wedding dress – my something blue and something old.”
Fiona’s classically beautiful lace dress is ‘Elle’ by Augusta Jones.
“I wanted to feel elegant and confident in my dress and knew I was looking for a curve-hugging gown with lace sleeves. As cliché as it may be, I definitely had a touch of Kate Middleton in mind! I was determined not to blow the budget on my dress, so my Mum and I spent weeks searching before I finally came across ‘Elle’ online. It was way beyond our budget so I was over the moon to find it in a sample sale in Ann Priscilla Bridal in Glasgow.”
Fiona and Ollie’s Christian faith is hugely important to them and so naturally they chose a church ceremony.
“We were married in a beautiful old church in St Andrews in Fife. The ceremony was the most important part of the day for us and getting married in a church represented the fact that we were making our promises before God as well as our lovely family and friends!”
“The day was such a happy one but I think my favourite moment was walking down the aisle. I was so filled with excitement and anticipation for the promises we were about to make that everyone said I was grinning all the way down the aisle!”
“We made traditional vows which we talked through with the minister before the big day. I was really moved by the idea of speaking words which our parents and grandparents and great-grandparents had all spoken before us.”
“We had two readings from the Bible during the ceremony. One was from Revelation 19v6-9, which describes Heaven as a big wedding celebration, and the other was from Colossians 3v12-17. Colossians reads, “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love which binds them all together in perfect unity.”
“The boys hired suits from Gilt Edged in Glasgow and all looked very sharp. Ollie bought the boys rainbow socks which they all took much delight in!”
The reception was held at Carphin House.
“We fell in love with the place even as we drove up the tree lined path to the house for the first time. I’d always loved the idea of having my wedding in my back garden and Carphin gave us the kind of house you could actually do that with! The wedding party (minus the poor groom) stayed all weekend and we had the whole place to ourselves to decorate, explore and enjoy – it really felt like our home for the weekend.”
“Though we planned the wedding ourselves, we had a lot of help on the day from the wonderful Laura from Laurel Tree Events. We didn’t need to stress about whether we’d forgotten anything because Laura was quietly working away in the background all day. Laura’s a lovely person and I’m so glad she was part of our big day.”
“We picked up the afternoon tea theme with teacup centrepieces, a ‘Bake off’ cake table and reams of pastel-coloured bunting.
So many folks played a part in getting everything ready. The hen party painted the table numbers, my sister drew up crafty signs, my mum made an incredible length of bunting and on one famous occasion my dad was even found pinning triangles in front of the footie!”
Fiona and Ollie designed and created all of the stationery themselves, as well as the mirror-frame table plan and these lovely ‘favours’.
“We decided against having traditional favours. Instead we gave everyone a photograph of a memory we had of them and wrote messages on the back.”
Regis Banqueting provided the catering, and a ‘friend of a friend’ baked the wedding cake. These are the most life-like cake-toppers I have ever seen!
“My amazing mum spent weeks modelling a cake topper that looked uncannily like us – all the way down to Ollie’s pocket square and my bouquet.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom
“On the day, you’re marrying your best friend surrounded by everyone you love and nothing else really matters too much. Planning a wedding is really fun, but it’s good to keep that perspective. If a particular detail is really important to someone you love – parents, bridesmaids, in-laws, whoever – it can be really lovely to let them have it. They’re more important!”
“I’m a huge fan of Love My Dress – Ollie is actually concerned that I must be planning a second wedding since I keep visiting the site!”
Thank you to Ollie and Fiona for sharing your heartfelt, happy day with us – and for those generous Words of Wedded Wisdom! Thanks also to Anna Urban for the very beautiful photography today.
Love Louisa xx
Photographer – Anna Urban
Planner/Stylist – Laura at Laurel Tree Events
Venue – Carphin House
Wedding Dress – ‘Elle’ by Augusta Jones via Ann Priscilla Bridal
Veil – borrowed from a friend
Shoes – Shuh
Groom – Gilt Edged in Glasgow and ties from Next
Bridesmaids – Dessy via Ebay
Florist – Catherine at Blue Poppy Florist and Flowers by Clowance
Rings – Argyll Arcade
Catering – Regis Banqueting
Hair and make-up – Kirsty Macpherson