When two (kind of) school sweethearts get married in some of the most picturesque spots which East Lothian has to offer, Aberlady Church & Archerfield House, you can bet it’s going to be romantic.
Tell us about your day; what were your expectations, how did you feel, how did it all go?
The day was even better than we expected, it went seamlessly! For starters, we had prepared for bad weather (it was in Scotland, after all) but we ended up having the most incredible weather I think I’ve ever experienced in Scotland!
It was just the most amazing experience to have everyone that means something to us in the same place, celebrating with us. We were so lucky that all of our guests got on so well, almost like they’ve known each other forever! All of our suppliers completely exceed our expectations. The flowers blew us away and the band was excellent (especially the saxophonist) – everyone was on the dance floor!
How did you meet and become engaged?
We met at school in Somerset, and became friends over a mutual love of Crossword Puzzles, cheesy American pop-rock music and procrastination from doing any real studying during free periods. It was after a particularly nerve wracking first interview over a steak and chips dinner at the Red Lion with Ellie’s Mom, Tammy, that Mike began his long and arduous pursuit for Ellie’s hand in marriage.2 failed prom requests and 10 months later, it was during a trip to Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival that Ellie finally realised Mike had potential… but it would take another 6 months for her to admit to herself (and the world) that Mellie were officially an item. Mike had already been in the relationship for 2 years at this point! And the rest, as they say, is history!We travelled up to Perthshire in January for the weekend of our 5th Anniversary (6th or 7th by Mike’s count). It was after a day of being pampered, wined and dined at the beautiful Fonab Castle in Pitlochry that Mike told Ellie he loved her and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. Relieved that she felt the same way, Mike pulled out the ring and proposed. Ellie said yes, then immediately opened her Wedding Planning binder and got to work…
Where did you find inspiration for your wedding?
We took inspiration from other weddings we’ve been to and sought a lot of advice from our parents. We were straddling three countries worth of tradition and wanted to make sure we got a nice blend of traditional and practical. Our colour scheme was inspired by Mike’s family tartan (Thomson). We took the blue from this and added in soft pinks. We wanted to make sure that the Thomson Tartan was incorporated throughout the day, using tartan ribbon to tie our favours and flip flops.
Why did you choose your venue/s?
We knew we wanted to get married in either London or Edinburgh (or surrounding areas). Edinburgh is a special place for us as it’s where our relationship properly began, we got engaged in Scotland and Mike grew up in East Lothian. After looking at lots of venues, Archerfield was the last one of the weekend. As soon as we drove through the entrance, Ellie had decided it was the one. It didn’t take long for everyone else to fall in love with it. The estate is breathtaking and the service is exceptional, and that was obvious from our first meeting with Louise, the wedding coordinator. Aberlady church was both close to the venue and the village where Mike grew up. Ellie’s Mom’s side of the family are practising Presbyterians, so the Church of Scotland was a good fit. The church is a beautiful building with stunning high arched ceilings and impressive views of The Firth of Forth.
Why did to choose to have a video of your day?
We wanted to be able to relive our wedding day in the many years to come! The day goes by so quickly and there are so many things going on that we thought it would be great to see it all again on video.
What was your favourite part in your highlight film?
All of it… I loved the dancing part at the end, it showed how great a time everyone was having and was just a perfect reflection of our friends and family. I also really liked the use of my Brother’s reading throughout the video.
I like the way the film managed to capture some of the small, real moments shared between both ourselves and the guests that you wouldn’t otherwise see in a photo. I liked the way the time lapses and the stills captured the natural beauty of the setting we chose.
Any tips for future Brides and Grooms?
Trust your suppliers! We left our suppliers to get on with their job – they know better than us! Don’t stress yourself on the day trying to manage anything, it makes the event run smoothly and their job easier!
Get as much done in advance is you can. We made sure we had everything organised a few weeks before so we weren’t stressing the the lead up to the big day. It also meant that we could relax on the day and trust that everyone knew what they were doing and everything was going to go smoothly.
Any unexpected moments?
Nope! Everything went perfectly to plan!
Venue: Church: Aberlady Parish Church Reception: Archerfield House
Celebrant – Brian Hilsley
Photographer – Ryan White Photography
Make up – Jill Abbie
Hair Stylist – Lori – Love Hair & Beauty
Ceremony music – Anne Traill
Band – Groove Culture
Piper – John Mackintosh
Flowers – WILD Flowers Edinburgh
Bride’s Dress – Hayley Paige
Bridesmaids’ Dresses – Nordstroms (USA)
Cake – Mimi’s Bakehouse
Stationery – I did all of it! (Ellie may be starting her own company so we’ll update this if she does)
Grooms/men outfits – Mike wore his own kilt but we hired all the others from Macgregor and McDuff