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Moon & Stars – A stargazing inspired elopement

Whether you’ve been planning a micro wedding from the beginning or your plans have changed to meet current government guidance, Kayleigh and Riley’s day is proof that small can be incredibly beautiful indeed.

Their elopement adventure started in South Queensferry, where they were married in an intimate ceremony before celebrating at an iconic Edinburgh restaurant. The next day they travelled to Loch Lomond and hiked up Conic Hill for these incredible photos. Prepare to be inspired…

How did you two meet?

Riley and I met in 2014 through an internet dating website – not exactly the height of romance but as I lived in the middle of nowhere with no neighbours other than cattle, I decided action needed to be taken.

After five days of speaking online we decided to meet. Riley picked me up in his tiny gold Peugeot 106 named ‘Bertie’. Riley was so nervous when I got into the car that he kept driving in the wrong direction and managed to stall his car on numerous occasions.

When we finally made it to our destination, we walked around Leicester city centre. We decided to warm ourselves, as it was December, with a Costa coffee. Before we entered the shop, I told Riley that I didn’t believe in chivalry and that I would buy my own drink. It was only later that he confessed that he’d actually lost his wallet before coming on the date so didn’t have enough cash to buy two drinks anyway.

Around four years later on the 21st of June 2019, Riley took me to Lumsdale Falls, a disused cotton mill. He was acting a bit out of character and kept ushering me away from the falls and up the steps to a higher vantage point away from the other people. After a few failed attempts (according to Riley), he grabbed my hand as I made to turn away from the waterfall and got to his knee and asked me to marry him. At that moment grey wagtails began swooping all around us and the sun shone. It really was very romantic and I said yes!

What inspired your wedding plans?

We were already planning on having a holiday in St Monans, Fife so we decided to tie the two occasions together and make it into a longer adventure.

Our theme was ‘Moon and Stars’ as we both love stargazing. This was reflected in small details such as my star crown, earrings and a lovely tiny moon necklace that Riley gave me on the morning of our wedding. I in turn gave him a wooden watch, with a monogram of our initials, that I had designed.

Rose and Ammi is a beautiful vibrant shop in Edinburgh, run by wonderful and kind florists. Before we arrived in Scotland I’d been in contact with the shop and enquired about the bouquet I’d like. They were very helpful and produced such an extraordinary bouquet that it took my breath away. The flowers are currently dried and still look wonderful.

We love your outfits!

After an extensive Pinterest search the “dream dress” caught my eye. I found the dress on the June Bridals website and snapped it up immediately. The soft ivory tulle falls elegantly at the back and the beaded detail around the bust made me feel glamorous.

Being quite thrifty, I found all the accessories such as my headpiece and veil on Ebay for under £10 and I chose to wear the shoes I’d met Riley in. I did not want the typical white high heel as I cannot walk in them and I wanted them to reflect my personality.

My husband only had eyes for this suit, as soon as he walked into Moss Bros he picked it up, had a fitting and bought it in under 20 minutes. I was rather impressed because he looked amazing. He chose a blue suit because it matched my engagement ring and a red tie.

Your photos are gorgeous!

We had the most wonderful experience! Anna is so kind and a brilliant photographer. We hiked up a mountain in our wedding gear (in November) whilst she supplied us with warming tea and great conversation. As a couple we don’t pose for the camera often but we were made to feel at ease and the creativity and thoughtfulness of the photographs are just beyond expectations. We would highly recommend!

We had our first dance at the top of Conic Hill to Lana Del Rey’s ‘Blue Jeans’. It has been our song ever since we met and it felt very surreal dancing to it overlooking Loch Lomond in high winds.

Were there any challenges on the day?

Most people would think I would change the moment that Riley unfortunately stood in dog doo doo whilst concentrating on where we were being directed by our photographer. However, we both found it highly amusing and it was typical that it would happen on such a poignant day.

Did you manage to stick to your budget?

Our budget was £2,000 and we came in at around £1,800.

Any advice?

Do what is right for you! I am from a very large family and felt a lot of internal pressure to have the big white wedding. However, after explaining to our families that we would rather elope, they were very understanding and gave us their best wishes and couldn’t wait to see the photos and hear all about it.

Honeymoon or minimoon?

We actually did a two week road trip around England, a kind of long way back home. After saying goodbye to our parents in St Monans, Riley and I travelled to Jedburgh, Whitby, Bowness-on-Windermere and Wales before returning back to Leicestershire. Each place we stayed was full of charm and stunning scenery.

What’s the one moment you’ll always remember?

I think when we both read out our vows, it was so emotional, funny and heartwarming to hear each other’s promises.

What an amazing way to start married life! And it’s not often that a couple tell us they came in under budget. Great work on the Ebay finds Kayleigh! x

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VenueSouth Queensferry Registry Office & Tower Restaurant, Edinburgh
FloristRose & Ammi
Hair stylist – Chloe at Ashley Clarke Signature Salon
Make-up artist – Kayleigh did her own makeup
Kayleigh’s outfit dress – Rava Avis from June Bridals & accessories from ebay
Riley’s outfitMoss Bros