I Got Married In A 200-Year-Old Castle | World Wide Wed | Refinery29


I always thought I wanted a husband who would wear my family tartan on our wedding day if I was going to give up my surname and that’s exactly what he did. I was fully kilted up for the wedding. I decided that since Emma was getting a new dress, I would get a new kilt. I was relatively well behaved on our wedding, although I did get a telling off from a great uncle, standing at the front of the ballroom, and just trying to compose myself. I had a little bit of a swig from the hip
flask after that I got waved over and told, “If I can’t do it sober, I shouldn’t be doing
it at all.” So I headed his advice and avoided the hip flask the rest of the ceremony. I would say that we both identify as being
Scottish, probably specifically as being from the north coast of Aberdeen and Shire. So a traditional Scottish wedding usually
involves around 120 people to 300 people. Back in the time when castles were built,
a grand ballroom was for 60 and not for 160. So we did have to choose a castle that was more modern. Our wedding is taking place at a venue called Drumtochty Castle. The castle has 11 beautiful bedrooms inside and it can accommodate all of our guests on the estate. We did want a celebration that lasted at least two nights. It spreads the time to catch up with everyone and looks like it takes the kind of pressure of the bride and groom on the day. We’re not having the typical church wedding. Neither of us are church going people. We chose a humanist ceremony. My mom was very, very keen that we had a full church wedding. So it took a bit of persuading that we did
the right thing but, yeah, we’ve got there. Scotland is one of the few countries in the
world that humanist weddings are legal. People choose to have a humanist ceremony because they get a ceremony they want, it’s entirely about them. It’s geared towards them. Every ceremony I conduct contains a period of reflection so we accept that there are people there who have faith, religious beliefs. Our ceremonies are very much inclusive. I did the traditional something old, new,
borrowed and blue. So my veil was borrowed, I wore a ring from my grandma that had a blue stone. My dress is the something new. The old item was a broach that my gran had and that was on my bouquet. It’s also traditional in Scotland to have
a lucky sixpence on your shoe as you go down the aisle. And Greg’s parents have a little stash of
old sixpences, so they lent me a sixpence and that got stuck onto my shoe before I went down the aisle. Emotions building up for me didn’t probably start
until I was standing at the front of the aisle there. Everything felt great until I got into the
ballroom and to the front of the aisle, and then the waterworks came on. I think overall I was the one who cried the least. So I managed to hold it together really well. So we decided with the humanist ceremony that we were going to write our own vows, or at least part of them. Yeah, I borrowed some of mine. I had to turn to some inspiration from Rabbie Burns, who’s a Scottish poet. You’ve made your promises and exchanged rings. It is my great pleasure and privilege to declare you married and as such pronounce you husband and wife. Greg, in time honored tradition, you may kiss your bride. All of our table names were based on whiskeys from around Scotland. I do enjoy a dram. Throughout the course of maybe a year between myself, my dad and my grandad, we collected empty whiskey bottles to place on the tables to place candles in. Something that we decided to do as favors was to write a personal note to each person to thank them for coming. Just so everyone knew that we had taken the time to really be glad that they’d come and joined in the fun with us. Traditionally in Scotland what would happen is your guests are all called to take their seats and asked to find their places for dinner and then the bride and groom are piped down by a bagpiper into the ballroom. But I decided to add something into that and make that just a little more exuberant than normal and actually hired a mini pipe band. Ladies and gentlemen put your hands together for father of the bride, Dennis! I’ve grown up with my dad playing piano
since the day I was born so we actually had two grand pianos within the building. Then we actually had him play alongside our band for the first dance. So we chose a song that had quite a lot of piano in the introduction and that song was Tom Odell, “Grow Old With Me”. So that was really nice. So we did some cèilidh dances and songs throughout the entertainment in the evening because we wanted to have that traditional element. A cèilidh looks like a lot of men in skirts,
kicking their legs in lots of different directions. Looking like they’re going to bump into
each other but miraculously not. It’s really good for getting people to dance with each other that maybe don’t know each other well. We cut the cake with a sword that was at a castle and that’s quite a traditional kinda thing. The only difference with a Scottish wedding and weddings from anywhere else is that all the men have their sporrans on and they all have a hip flask in there with something tasty to top them up if they’re ever to wait too
long at the bar. Our wedding was quite a traditional Scottish wedding. We were married in a castle, we wore kilts, we danced cèilidh. We didn’t necessarily set out for our wedding to be that, but I guess our heritage and our culture and the things we were used to seeing at family weddings and celebrations all found its way in there. You maybe question whether a year or maybe 18 months of planning is going to be worth it, but I can honestly say hand on heart,
it was the best weekend of my life. Thanks for watching World Wide Wed. Subscribe to Refinery29 to never miss an episode.

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