We always encourage our couples to really think about what they want their day to look like and with just 5 weeks to plan everything from start to finish, yes you read that right, just 5 weeks, Lena & David had to know exactly what they wanted and oh my, it was stunning in every way imaginable!
After re-arranging their wedding due to Covid…….and then having to cancel their re-arranged plans for a wedding in Barcelona, they decided to start from scratch (again!), despite having just over a month to plan! WOW! Then they found Cluny and had THE dreamiest, most spectacular, modern classic of a Scottish fairytale castle wedding.
So if you’re looking for some dreamy wedding inspiration, read on to find out everything about their beautiful day.
After cancelling our Spanish wedding (which we already had to rearrange once before) we decided to start from scratch and have our wedding in Aberdeenshire, where David is from, where I also lived and where we met and spent a lot of time. We came across Cluny Castle after endless searches and absolutely loved it straight away.
It had everything we were looking for – a lovely Chapel for the ceremony, separate areas for the drinks reception (with outdoor and indoor options, weather dependent) and a perfect hall for dinner and dancing. We could see the character and beauty of the castle through the images and actually didn’t have the chance to visit it in person until our wedding weekend came around. It was even better in person and we are so thankful that there was one weekend free so soon after we found it.
The Style & Theme...
To complement the castle’s inherent beauty, Lena and David kept their styling simple and classic and chose a timeless and romantic palette of greens and neutral creams and pinks.
“I really enjoyed being inspired by the venue and let that do the talking. Cluny is so beautiful as it is so we wanted the character of the castle to come through and chose flowers that would complement its features. I used Pinterest to collate a floral pin board and sent that to our florist Jill Ritchie at Hay’s Flowers, who beautifully captured what we were after. We wanted something quite neutral in colours and natural to complement the castle and they were absolutely gorgeous.”
As a Scot, it was natural that David wear traditional dress. David’s kilt was from McCall’s Highlandwear in Aberdeen.
My bridesmaids wore the palest pink, tie-back gowns from Warehouse and I let them choose their shoes to ensure they would be comfortable. I also wanted them to feel themselves and add their own style to their outfits so they could wear whichever accessories they liked.
The bridal party’s make-up was applied by Kelly Daun Makeup and Linton & Mac styled their hair. Lena wore her hair in a half-up, half-down style, with a handmade hair vine woven through. “One of my best friend’s mum made my hair vine by hand. Her company is Inverdon Designs based in Aberdeen.”
My gown was a strapless, fit and flare gown with a flowing train from Essense of Australia.
I found wedding dress shopping to be quite stressful in London. After countless visits to boutiques and being rushed around, I was visiting my mum in Aberdeen and went into Perfect Bridal Rooms. The girls there were super-helpful! It was a large shop so we felt like we had the time and space to feel comfortable and I picked out my dress after two visits.
My advice is to actually not try too many similar dresses on. I tried on so many variations of the same style and it became quite overwhelming trying to choose from such a similar bunch. I knew I wanted a lace dress with buttons down the back and a long train, along with a fit and flare silhouette. My veil was also from Perfect Bridal Rooms. I had tried it on with my dress and it suited it perfectly so it was an easy choice.
My shoes were sparkly, strappy high heels from Gianvito Rossi. They were gifted to me by my older sister, Suzanne.
We didn’t tailor our vows. However, something that was very special was having David’s uncle officiate our ceremony and one thing we asked him to include was his own ‘marriage advice’.
My sister Suzanne and our friend Jenny did a reading each. We let them pick something themselves. Jenny read ‘How Falling in Love is like Owning a Dog’ by Taylor Mali and Suzanne read ‘Marriage’, author unknown.
Chris Henderson‘s timeless photographic style was a perfect fit their wedding.
“Chris was the first and only photographer we looked at. I came across his page on Instagram and we absolutely loved the natural and real style of his photos. He was absolutely fantastic and made us and our guests feel completely at ease. 110% would recommend to others.’
Their cake was a beautifully simple design, adorned with fresh flowers, from Cakes by Kirsty.
“We had three layers: apple and blackberry (our personal favourite, delicious and autumnal for a September wedding), orange and passionfruit for a citrus option, and chocolate as everybody loves chocolate cake.”
“Kirsty sent us a selection of flavours in the post (probably one of the best things to be delivered by Royal Mail!) as she is based up in Aberdeenshire. All the flavours were delicious so it was quite a hard decision.”
The castle’s Tenants Hall was laid out with long tables for dinner which we loved and the food was provided by Thistle Catering.
Lorraine also did the catering for our small welcome dinner and morning after breakfast. The food was fab!
Doug at Entertainers Agency arranged musicians and band for the couple’s celebration.
“Doug was just great. The Red Hot Chilli Pipers were a ‘big surprise’ entertainment, Bell Rock were our Ceilidh band and Sophie Askew was our harpist. Doug also organised us his DJ. We didn’t end up having a first dance. We decided not to as the thought of dancing in front of everyone so early in the night didn’t fill us with confidence! We ended up doing a very impromptu ‘first dance’ when the Chilli Pipers came, though.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom...
Enjoy every moment! It might be an obvious one but the day really does go by in a blink of an eye. The great thing is that you’re left with amazing memories and photos to look back on for years to come.
Also, don’t sweat the small details. On the day they won’t matter and you won’t even realise they were missing. Think of the bigger picture; what memories do you want to hold on to and what aspects of the day do you want your guests to remember most and prioritise from there. For us, we wanted our guests to have a really good time so we thought through our entertainment and what surprise we could give our guests to ensure a fun party.
At the end of the day, being surrounded by your family and friends and finally being able to get married are the most important things.
If you are having to drastically change your plans or are in the process of planning a wedding that you may not have previously envisioned, please rest assured that it will work out in the end and everything happens for a reason. From our personal experience, we couldn’t have been happier to get married in Scotland which was something we had previously ruled out! After it all, we wouldn’t have changed a single thing.
Photographer - Chris Henderson
Planner/Stylist - Fiona at Cluny Castle
Venue - Cluny Castle, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Wedding Dress - Essense of Australia via Perfect Bridal Rooms, Aberdeen
Veil - Perfect Bridal Rooms
Headpiece - Inverdon Designs hair vine (no contact details)
Shoes - Gianvito Rossi
Accessories - Pearl & diamond earrings
Groom - McCall's Highlandwear
Bridesmaids - Warehouse
Flowergirls - Next
Florist - Jill Ritchie at Hay's Flowers
Cake - Cakes by Kirsty
Entertainment - Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Bell Rock Ceilidh Band + Sophie Askew Harp via Entertainers Agency
Rings - Tiffany & Co
Catering - Thistle Catering
Stationery - Papier
Hair Stylist - Linton & Mac
Makeup Artist – Kelly Daun Makeup