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Altskeith Country House Wedding, Loch Ard, Scotland.

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Helen and Jameson got married at Altskeith Country House on Loch Ard in Scotland. It was a bit of a trek for their friends and family some coming from as far as Liverpool, Manchester, down south and even Canada!!! I overheard that getting off a 12 hour flight and then navigating Scottish country roads in a hire car, in the dark, on the other side of the road is quite something! But it was most definitely worth it!

If you would like to watch the slide show click on the image below! If you prefer to scroll carry on scrolling!


Altskeith Country House

Altskeith Country House is the perfect venue for couples that love nature, the venue sits on the edge of Loch Ard, overlooking the Loch and Ben Lomond and sitting right in the centre of Queen Elizabeth Forest Park you are surrounded by forests, nature and beautiful scenery, with very little light pollution about the starry skies at night are a dream.

At Altskeith Country House there are plenty of different options for an outdoor ceremony, you can get married on the lawns alongside the Loch, by the waterfall, on the beach of Loch Ard, under the beech tree over the small bridge in the trees. If it rains you can have your ceremony in the function room over looking the Loch and Ben Lomond, the glass wall in the function room is removable so if you want to be able to breath is some of that sweet rainy air while you are getting married you can while staying dry as well something alive relatively dry. It’s all to play for.

Getting Ready

Helen and Jameson both got ready onsite at Altskeith Country house. Jameson took the cottage on the outside of the building with his groomsmen while Helen stayed in the main building with her friends and family. Helen’s sister Harriet who is a mega talented make up artist did Helen’s hair and make up for her while the girls enjoyed some champagne together and watched for wedding guests arriving at the venue from the loft room windows.

The Ceremony

Helen and Jameson chose to get married under The Beech Tree on the lawn as that is where Jameson proposed! I know just when you thought it couldn’t get more prefect! Well it has, so get over it!

As Helen and Jameson were already technically married they had a humanist hand fasting ceremony, with plenty of heart felt readings from Helen and Jamesons friends and family and Helen walked down the aisle to music Jameson had composed for her on their anniversary. No you stop it!

Confetti, Drinks and Magic

After being attacked with some dried petal confetti by their friends and family they chilled out for a bit and presented their wedding guests with a boat load of booze and a magician.

Then after some family photos and a few quick portraits hiding out of Scotlands blazing sun. Yes really! We headed in for speeches, some cracker pulling, plenty of giggles and a few tears. Oh and some amazing food from the kitchen at Altskeith Country House obviously!

Cake Cutting and Speeches

After our little expedition we headed back for Helen and Jameson to pretend to cut the massive Cake (Helen and Jameson loved the cake design so much they thought it would be a crime to eat it, so they got a fake one made so they could keep it forever!) then it was straight into the main room for dinner and speeches.

Loch Ard

Once everyone was fed we popped back out for a little walk on the beach of Loch Ard and a boat trip. I bloody love boats as any of my friends will tell you, it’s hard to walk past a boat or a boat trip with out me forcing a load of people on it and shouting that they all better stop crying and start enjoying themselves, but that is another story.

On the boat Jameson got the rowing job while Helen has the job of alternating between pulling silly faces and looking pretty which she did like a pro… As you can see. Even the midges stayed at home, or all hung out outside a night club or something.

The Party

Then it was party time!!! Helen and Jameson opened the dance floor with their first dance and then passed over the reigns to the Scottish Ceilidh Band who had everyone wizzing around the room like smiling Tazmanian devils, high of life and fine wine.

As the night drew in the fire pits came out and guests feasted on toasted marsh mellows and pizza before greeting Helen and Jameson with sparklers before they left the building.


A beautiful wedding for some beautiful humans. Thanks for having me along for the ride Helen and Jameson!

More weddings in Scotland please!













Supplier Shout Out!

Dress: Dress Designed by Mori Lee, supplied by Blush Boutique in Upper Mill

Kilt : Kilt and suit hired from Kilts 4 U in Glasgow. Ties in family tartan made by The Scotland Shop.

Florist: Cherry Blossom - https://www.flowersbycherryblossom.co.uk

Bridesmaid Dresses:: The Infinite Collection by Wed2B

Entertainment?: Magician and DJ - http://www.johnkingevents.com/magician-glasgow

Ceilidh Bandhttp://www.scottishceilidh-band.co.uk/the-band

Cake : http://www.studio8cakes.co.uk/

Hairdresser and Make Up Artist? : Harriet Westcott @harri.hmua

Wedding Favors: Crackers made by Helen and Jameson

Hand Drawn Map Table Plan: fentimansadventure

Slide Show Music Jameson Bell.








OUTDOOR WEDDING GAME IDEAS

Outdoor weddings can be fun, but they are even better with some games to play. Here are some of the top outdoor wedding games to keep your guests occupied. FYI a lot of these games can be played indoors too, maybe not the fire one.

Signs

Having games to play is great, but if people don’t know where they are, if they are in fact part of the wedding or even in some cases what the rules are it can money into the wind. Sometime you need to lead the horse to the water. You know the kind of horses that will be coming to your wedding and the kind of games you will be playing so if a sign or two or a little bit of info about how to play will help, chalk boards are a great re usable way to point people in the right direction.

Hula Hooping!

Hula hoops are like super bloody cheap, like I just googled one and you can get one for £2.50 online (probably cheaper from an actual real life shop) and you can get a glow in the dark one here for £13.99! I might get one of those actually… https://www.glowsticks.co.uk

I’m not here to sell you hula hoops, but what I am saying is watching friends hula hooping is fun, beating your friends at hula hooping is even better, hula hooping is a laugh. You can even do that skippy thing that you used to do at school where you swing it round your leg and hop over it… If you want to. Anyway basically I’m really good at hula hooping and this is why hula hooping is number one, if you want me to put my camera down for a few minutes and beat your friends at a hula hooping competition… IT IS ON.

Limbo

Limbo is loads of fun and you quite literally just need a stick. I very generously donated a bamboo garden stick to my friends wedding this summer to use as a limbo stick and it went down a storm. If you aren’t going to have a special “Limbo Time”

1. Why the hell not?

2. Maybe get something to hold your limbo stick up for people so it doesn’t just look like a stick on the floor and less than 3 people can have a bash.

Cards

A couple of packs of cards knocking around the place can’t hurt, unless people start throwing them at each other. It can help the kids play snap and maybe give other guests that fancy a game a chance to show off their best shuffles. Everyone knows a card game. A pack of cards on each table will not break the bank and give everyone, young, old, introvert, extrovert a chance to have a bit of fun with some people they might not have otherwise spoken to.

Connect 4

It’s a golden oldie, you will no doubt have seen it at a wedding before but it wouldn’t be a proper blog with out good old giant connect 4! Plus you give your photographer a chance to take arty through the hole photos like this, we love that kind of shit.

Bouncy Castle

Who doesn’t like bouncing around like an idiot?! Just make sure you don’t bounce on straight after dinner * puke emoji *

GIANT JENGA

Giant Jenga works a treat at keeping small and larger guests occupied, but if your budget wont stretch to hiring out a giant garden game set, why not just put a few normal sized ones out of tables instead? You can even force your guests to write messages to you both in sharpie pen on the side of the blocks in thats your thing. It might keep them away from the bar for a few minutes.

HOOK A DUCK

This is a fun carnival type game for kids and can also be used to help guests win prizes if you put a number on the bottom of the duck and have a prize for each one, or maybe just write insults or cryptic fortunes, it’s your party! Write whatever you like on the bottom of the ducks.

WATER GUNS

Depending on how brave you are and how hot your wedding your day is, arming your guests with water guns could be a really fun or really fun-stupid idea. Maybe have some towels to hand.

FIRE!!!

Ok, you got me a fire isn’t a game, but they are fun to build and keep going. People like burning stuff. They will keep your guests warm and together when night falls and can be a good old place to crack out a guitar and have a sing song or just sit up into the sweet hours of the night catching up with your mates. They certainly add a bit of extra atmosphere to any outdoor wedding and if one of your guests breaks a chair that you hired from the chair hire company, you can quite easily burn the evidence.

Thinking about colour palettes? Your Go-To Color Palettes for A Perfect Wedding

Cotswolds House Hotel Wedding - Shani and Dan

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So Shani and Dan got married at St James Church and The Cotswolds House Hotel in Chipping Campden. I didn’t meet Shani or Dan in person before the wedding as they were so far away but I knew from our Skype call that it was going to be an epic wedding day, not just because Shani and Dan had organised such a wonderful day for all of their guests but because they are such lovely warm fun loving people and guess what?! I was right. It was absolutely perfect, such a relaxed and fun feel to the day, everyone was having the best time and the setting was beautiful, it felt like we were in some gardens in Italys countryside.

I also had the pleasure of working alongside a fantastic team for the day including Ben from Tynegate Films, Richard , The Gloucestershire Magician and my awesome second shooter Siobhan McGill of MgGill Sister Films.

I’m going to let Shani and Dan tell you all about it in their own words.

Thanks for having us Shani and Dan. Lots of love xxxxx

Shani and Dan’s Story

 We met at high school and fell for each other whilst in the process of failing A-Level Biology. We were both so terrible at the subject that the teacher sat us together and from that moment on, we didn’t get very much work done! We then completed our A-Levels, took a gap year and travelled to Asia and went on to study Business Management together at University - we really were inseparable!. We graduated with our degrees a few years later, somehow ended up gaining three crazy dogs in that time and continued to do some more travelling, our favourite being a road trip across America. We've now been together for almost ten years and live in the quiet Cotswold town of Chipping Campden, where we got married.

Getting Engaged

 Dan took me to Paris for my 21st Birthday and proposed on the Champ De Mars, it was magic! When we returned our family threw us an amazing surprise engagement party. We were quite young when we first got engaged and we decided that we would get married a 'couple' of years later. This somehow turned into a 5 year engagement! So the wedding day was very special for us as we had been planning for it for a long time. 


Shani’s favourite thing about Dan is how kind and selfless he is, always helping other people and looking after her in particular! Shani also love how passionate he is about his hobbies.

Dan’s favourite thing about Shani is her smile and how driven she is in everything she does. Nothing phases her and she's such a strong woman.

St James Church and The Cotswold House Hotel in Chipping Campden.

 We got married at St James Church in Chipping Campden, which is close to our hearts from our childhood. We had our reception at The Cotswold House Hotel in Chipping Campden. The most important thing for us was for our guests to have a great day. We were so lucky with the beautiful weather that we were able to have our wedding reception outside in the gardens. There were moments throughout the day when we both stood together and looked around at everyone, it was such a lovely feeling watching people enjoying themselves, with the the kids running around the garden, the magician shocking everyone with his entertainment, people tucking into their food and lots of free flowing drinks! Overall there was a really lovely feel to the day and we are so happy with how it all turned out.

The Wedding Dress.

 I wore an English Rose Bridal dress from The Bridal Room Broadway. The ladies in the shop were so amazing helping to choose my dream dress and the whole experience was so wonderful, they really made me feel special.

https://www.thebridalroombroadway.co.uk/

A Shout Out to Our Wedding Suppliers.

My mum did my hair for the wedding day, I knew I didn't want anyone else to do it! She's the most wonderful hairdresser and it was so special for me that she was the one helping me to get ready in the morning. She did an amazing job, even though she was so nervous!


Christine Cara was my makeup artist, she was so much fun to be with throughout all of the trials leading up to the wedding day. I chose Christine because of how amazing other people had told me her work was, she didn't disappoint at all! She made me feel confident and helped me to create the look I wanted, even when I couldn't articulate it very well myself!

http://www.christinecaramakeup.com/

Our flowers were by Charlotte Gabb, we chose Charlotte because of her wealth of experience and knowledge of the church. Charlotte was brilliant and we were so happy with the beautiful arrangements.

We had The Gloucestershire Magician, Richard Parsons for our wedding reception entertainment. He was absolutely amazing! Our guests are still talking about how they can't believe the tricks he did. We are still talking about it too! Richard helped us to create that fun, relaxed feeling that we wanted to achieve on the day. 

http://www.gloucestershiremagician.co.uk/

Sally Potter made our wedding cake. Sally has been making my birthday cakes since I was 4 years old, so it was really special for me that she did our wedding cake. 

Our wedding stationary was made by Cherry Press. We chose Cherry Press because they are a local business who create traditional letterpress stationary the good old fashioned way!

http://www.cherrypress.co.uk/

Ben Tynegate was our videographer. We chose Ben because my sister showed us some of his work and we fell completely in love with it. We knew that his cinematic films were what we wanted to capture our day. We now can't stop watching them and will treasure our beautiful films forever. 

https://tynegate-films.com/

We chose Katie Dervin as our wedding photographer as she was recommended by a friend. From the moment we saw Katie's photos we knew we didn't want anyone else to capture the wedding. The lighting and the way they are edited are so beautiful and we wish we could frame all of them and have them all displayed in our house!! Katie was so lovely on the day too, helping us to feel so relaxed and at ease in front of the camera.

 We tried to keep the wedding and the decor low key and not too over the top but still with a classic, pretty feel to it. We had lots of fairy lights and candles everywhere to create a nice warm glow, but the venue spoke for itself so we didn't have to bring in too many other decorations.

We put a lot of effort into personalised touches throughout the day, for instance, we made all of the centre pieces ourselves, our wedding guest book and our polaroid timeline and it was so rewarding to see how it all came together beautifully on the day.

 We wanted to have a really relaxed day so we chose to have a BBQ instead of a traditional three-course meal, which worked really well. For music throughout the day we made a playlist of our favourite songs growing up together and then we had a DJ in the evening for everyone to dance the night away to!

Shani and Dan’s Stag and Hen Do:

Dan went to Amsterdam for his stag do, he was amazed that he survived the weekend! It consisted of beer, beer tours and more beer. He loved it there and hopes to one day go back to enjoy the city a bit more sober!

I was truly spoiled as a hen, having three wonderful hen do's! The first was a bottomless brunch with all of my lovely girls. The second was a trip to the beautiful Greek island of Mykonos with my bridesmaids. The third was organised by my lovely mum, who got all of the ladies in my family together for a weekend in London and a party boat on the river Thames.

 There isn't anything we would do differently really. 

The only minor thing is I wish I had kept my veil on for longer! I took it off as it was getting caught on the floor but wish I had kept it on all day!

What would your advice be to couples planning their wedding day?

 Enjoy it, it really is so much fun! Don't get too bogged down in the detail and lost in small stuff that doesn't truly matter, try to be well organised in advance and that way you can enjoy it as a couple.

Suppliers:

Photographer: Katie Dervin, 2nd shot by Siobhan McGill of mcgillsisterfilms.com/

Videographer: https://tynegate-films.com/

Dress: https://www.thebridalroombroadway.co.uk/

Magician: http://www.gloucestershiremagician.co.uk/

Stationary: http://www.cherrypress.co.uk/

Make Up: http://www.christinecaramakeup.com/

Chetham's Library Wedding Photographer Manchester - Maddy & Craig

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Maddy and Craig's Story

"We met at work and had known each other for a while before one fateful night at the Liar's Club sparked the start of something. We had our first date the very next day

We got engaged in Copenhagen, which Craig managed to surprise me with for my birthday - I didn't even know we were leaving the country until we turned off the m56 for Manchester airport. He had even packed miniature toiletry holders so I could repack my shampoo etc without having to tip me off in advance. Craig proposed almost as soon as we got to the hotel, I think the stress of getting the ring through security without me noticing had taken it's toll! It was a beautiful weekend in the snow in January." 

Chetham's Library and Lock 91 as Wedding Venues

Maddy and Craig got married in one of Manchester’s hidden gem wedding venues, Chetham’s Library. It’s a beautiful venue with loads of character and wonderful little pockets of light and shadows that make for a wedding photographer’s dream! So if you are getting married there and reading this, give me a shout! Your wedding guests are also able to wander around the library and explore the stacks of old antique books while they catch up with one and other and sip on their champers. It’s a really unique wedding venue and all in Manchester city centre! Making getting there, staying there or hoping off to somewhere else all super convenient possibilities. In this case Maddy and Craig hopped over to Lock 91 in Deansgate to continue the party, which is another great venue for a lot of the same reasons Chetham’s Library is, without the epic Library to wander though of course!

Here’s what Maddy and Craig had to say about Chetham’s Library as their wedding venue:

"We wanted casual but classy venues for the wedding and we wanted to keep to a strict budget. We visited Chetham's Library and fell in love with how beautiful it was and all of the history behind it. We thought about having the full day there but really wanted to put our own stamp on the party and keep it quite casual and Lock 91 was perfect for that. It was also extremely reasonably priced to have the ceremony at the library's Baronial Hall and we had exclusive use of the library itself for photos and for guests to explore after the ceremony. It turned into a wedding of two halves really, with a fairly traditional civil ceremony at the library followed by a raucous party at the bar!

Lock 91 were completely relaxed and accommodating, which was extremely helpful as we were maybe a bit too laid back with the planning until quite last minute. We had caterpillar cakes for our wedding cake which I completely forgot to buy until I went to drop everything off the night before and Andi (the manager) helpfully reminded me and I made a mad dash to Tesco! Simon at Chetham's was brilliant as well, we were very fortunate with everyone we dealt with.

In choosing the venues (and in choosing everything) within budget we decided to focus on what was important to us and what wasn't. I got a taxi to the venue as neither of us is particularly interested in cars. Our two wedding cakes cost £10 from Tesco and who doesn't love caterpillar cake!? The biggest outlays of the day were on drinks, food and the band and as the aim of the day (besides getting married) was to have a really great time with friends and family, drinks food and music were our priority and therefore where chose to put our money. Craig is a big music fan and spent much of the year building up to the wedding making Spotify playlists for pre-ceremony, ceremony, drinks reception etc."

Suppliers

"I got my dress and hairpiece from case of the Curious Bride in Sale and the dress designers are Hazaar of London (the headpiece was done by Melanie from case of the curious bride). Craig bought his suit online in the sale and the groomsmen wore their own blue suits. Bridesmaid dresses were from Dorothy Perkins (also in the sale!) And Jasmine's dress and shoes were monsoon. Flowers were amazing and were done by Emily at Bloomin Altrincham Market. The food was done by Cafe Mozaic in Ashton and everybody loved it! Mr Wilson's Second Liners were the most incredible band we could have wished for. We bought shed loads of prosecco for the drinks reception at Chetham's from Sainsbury's. Rachel McDonnell did my dress alterations. Rachael Dutton did hair and make up. We had the most amazing wedding night at Hotel Gotham and they were very patient when we completely overslept our check out time.

Also we had THE BEST PHOTOGRAPHER EVER  and I highly recommend her to anyone looking for a wedding photographer!" 

Looking for your wedding photographer? Get in touch!

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Trafford Hall Wedding Photographer - Jo & Mark's Festival Tipi Wedding

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Jo & Mark's Story...

In Jo's words... "Mark and I met when we were both living in Prague & I was bored and answered an advert to view a room I didn’t need and it was love at first sight (for me!)."

"When we got engaged, Mark took me to the bar where we had our first date and we sat at the table we sat at on that first night and he got down on one knee and proposed in Czech" 

On choosing St Thomas's Church and Trafford Hall as Wedding Venues...

"The church where we got married was my local church where I got my Brownie award and when my Nana & Grandad were buried. We loved the countryside feel of the church and the deal sealer was when we had it confirmed that my friend could play the organ for us. When we were planning our wedding we decided that we really wanted a tipi wedding so we were hunting for a venue with a large outdoor space. When we saw Trafford Hall we were overjoyed - it was perfect with all of the scenery. We were also really passionate that it was owned by a charity that helps low income families and the money that we paid would go towards helping others. They were amazing there and helped make our day really special."

Advice for Couples on their Wedding Day...

"If there was one piece of advice that I could give a bride and groom it would be to enjoy your day - it goes so fast (and everyone LOVES telling you how fast it goes) so try and grab 5 minutes with just the two of you so you can take a breather and enjoy it together!" 
 

St Thomas’s Church

St Thomas’s Church is a huge beautiful building in the heart of Lydiate in Liverpool chosen by Jo and Mark for it’s special meaning to Jo’s family, the church also boasts it’s own handy car park just over the road, which is great for guests that are driving to ceremony, inside the stained glass windows are huge letting in oddles of natural light. It’s a beautiful church to get married in and can hold a large number of guests.

Trafford Hall

Is a gorgeous red brick Georgian mansion nestled in 14 acres of land there’s plenty of space to play around with. If you wish to get married at Trafford Hall and hold your whole day there, you can do! They have a civil ceremony licence, they also have 52 bedrooms on site so that your guests can bed down after the party and rumour has it you get a free night in the bridal suite as part of your wedding package. You heard it here first! ;)

As Jo said Trafford Hall is owned by a charity so by hiring the venue you'll be helping fund the important work that the Trafford Hall's charity partners are involved with within the local community. :) 

Getting Ready

Jo and her bridesmaids got ready at her mums house. I love photographing brides getting ready at their family homes, sometimes people are worried that their might be a mess or that decorating hasn’t been finished but when you look back on the photos in years to come having them taken at the family home adds that extra bit of narrative and meaning to the photos. You can look back at the old wall paper and carpets and get all nostalgic about the old family home! Jo’s Dad popped in to give her some wedding morning gifts and see his beloved daughter in her wedding dress before they hopped in the vintage wedding cars and high tailed it to the church!

The Ceremony

There was some anticipation in the church for a while as the bus with half of the wedding guests had hit some traffic on the way and was running late! At one point it looked like the ceremony might have to go ahead with out them, but luck was on Mark and Jo’s side and the bus got there just in time, the guests quickly made it to their seats and Mark and Jo were married in front of all of their friends and family.

The Bus

It was quite a journey from St Thomas’s Church to Trafford Hall so Mark and Jo had the bus stick around to make sure the guests could catch a lift there, the bus was the place to be with plenty of fizz and some nips of hard liquor being passed around the top deck the party had officially started!

The Party

Jo and Mark wanted a tipi festival wedding reception and so had a tipi put up in the back garden of Trafford Hall. After the food and speeches they kicked of the party by cutting the cake and launching into their energetic first dance to a live band. It turned out to be quite a party! 

 

A big shout out to my wonderful second shooter Katy Mutch for her tremendous work as always. 

Thanks for having us Jo and Mark it was an absolute pleasure to be part of your day! xxxxxxx

 

Katie was brilliant from beginning to end!

She was the photographer for our wedding in September and we couldn’t have asked for better. She put us at ease straight away when we first contacted her and was so relaxed and positive throughout. We knew we had made the right choice when we saw the beautiful photos from the engagement shoot. On the day both she and Katie, the second shooter, were the consummate professionals but also relaxed and friendly and so patient – which must have been a challenge at times! The wedding photos are stunning and Katie managed to capture so many beautiful moments from the day. We both cried the first time we looked at them and our friends and family have been just as moved and impressed.

Thanks so much for everything Katie.


Love Jo and Mark Gilbertson xxx

A shout out to Jo & Mark's Wedding Suppliers! 

Tipi: event in a tent - https://www.event-in-a-tent.co.uk
Venue: Trafford Hall - http://www.traffordhall.com

Florist: The flower farm - http://www.theflowerfarm.co.uk
Dress: Cicily bridal - https://cicilybridal.com
Veil: Helen Martin veils - http://www.helenmartinveils.co.uk
Cars: Horgans wedding cars - http://www.horganscars.co.uk
Shoes: Vivienne Westwood
Bridesmaid dresses: ASOS

Band - Louise and the Love Bugs. 

https://www.bestoneentertainment.com/louiseandthelovebugs.html