From Helen’s gorgeous off-the-shoulder dress to her (school prom!) blue shoes, there’s lots to be inspired by in this laidback celebration.
Read on to see more of Helen and Alex’s Scottish Borders wedding.
Where did your love story begin?
We met at work, we both worked on the same floor and had often noticed the other without saying anything. Then, finally, on a colleague’s leaving night we got talking and quickly went from friends to a relationship.
We moved in together after six months, however a year later, Alex took an opportunity to work in London, and long distance began. We saw each other every second weekend with Helen going to London and Alex coming back to Scotland. After nearly two years of long distance, Alex proposed, then a year later in the July, he moved back home and we married in October.
What inspired your wedding plans?
Neither of us had any idea what we wanted our wedding to look like, which I think was helpful when it came to planning as we were very open to all ideas. Once the bridesmaids dresses were picked, we pulled our colours together and went from there. All we were really agreed on prior was that we wanted it to be a really laidback atmosphere.
Tell us about your venue…
The venue was only the second one we visited and as soon as we saw it, I think we knew. We knew we wanted the wedding to be relaxed and for everyone to enjoy themselves and Netherbyres had that kind of feel. The decor was also a bit different and more modern than other venues we viewed online and we loved that.
We love your outfits! Tell us more…
Pretty Woman was the first dress shop I went to, and I had vague ideas of what I wanted, but everything I tried on in that style just wasn’t it. Then Lynn, the shop owner asked if I trusted her and she brought out the Jess dress and as soon as I saw myself in the mirror I burst into tears because I knew I’d found my dress. It wasn’t similar to what I thought I’d get at all, but I’m so glad Lynn picked it for me as it was perfect. The style was more modern and the fit was exactly what I wanted.
I also wore the same shoes that I wore to my high school prom from Rainbow Club shoes, which were originally dyed blue to match my prom dress. They ended up looking similar to Carrie Bradshaw’s famous Manolo Blahniks. My earrings and necklace were from Tiffanys and the bracelet was a graduation present from my parents.
As it was a Scottish wedding, Alex and the groomsmen wore kilts from Slanj. The tartan he picked was for Campbell with connections on his mother’s side. He also wore the traditional kilt accompaniments of a sporran and a sgian dubh.
Your photos are gorgeous!
Anna was recommended to us by another photographer and on viewing her website we knew that was exactly what we were hoping for with our wedding photos. They didn’t feel overly staged and the light on all of them was perfect. We really couldn’t be happier with our photos. There’s a perfect mix of posed and natural and she seems to have managed to be everywhere at once.
What was your first dance song?
We danced to You Make It Easy by Jason Aldean. We don’t have an ‘our song’ so we listened to a lot of wedding playlists on Spotify and this song stood out to us.
Tell us more about the flowers and florist…
I’ve known Jacqui for a long time, as she’s my best friends mum. She lives not too far from the venue, and she’s incredibly talented, so it made sense for her to do our flowers.
I had very vague ideas, but don’t know anything about flowers and what’s in season. She took those ideas and created perfect bouquets for me and my bridesmaids, buttonholes for all the men, corsages for the mums and grandmothers, and when my ideas kept growing, she made a beautiful flower arrangement for our ceremony arch, and a garland for the staircase in the venue. All of it turned out perfectly, and we couldn’t have been more pleased
Were there any challenges along the way?
We got engaged in May 2020 and married in October 2021, so throughout the whole planning process, Covid was a concern. We were very lucky that restrictions on weddings lifted in August 2021, however many overseas friends and family were unable to make it due to travel restrictions.
Our original makeup artist also unfortunately caught Covid from a wedding the week before ours, however Melanie stepped up last minute and did an amazing job.
Did you manage to stick to your budget?
Not entirely, but we obviously have no experience of planning a wedding and you just don’t know how much some suppliers will cost initally.
On the day, don’t stress about anything, as long as you and your partner end up married, then everything else that goes to plan is just a bonus.
Honeymoon or minimoon?
Our dream was to go to Mauritius, but we’ve decided to put that on hold until travel restrictions have eased more. Instead we went on a minimoon round Scotland to Dunkeld, Dornoch and Kinloch Rannoch.
When telling my Gran about our plans, she mentioned that her and my grandad had started their honeymoon in Dunkeld, and they were married for 58 years so that felt like a good omen for us.
What’s the one moment you will always remember?
Helen – The speeches. My dad, Alex, one of my best friends and the best man spoke and they were all fantastic. Laughter and tears throughout. I had them all recorded and I’m so glad.
Alex – Seeing Helen walk down the aisle.
Love this advice from Helen and Alex. And what a sweet honeymoon story too. Thanks for sharing your wonderful day with us! x
Venue – Netherbyres House
Photographer – Anna Urban
Florist – Fleurs de Jacque
Hair + Makeup – Melanie Herriot
Celebrant – Marie Waterson Humanist
Helen’s outfit –Eva Lendel from Pretty Woman Edinburgh
Alex’s outfit– Slanj Kilts, Edinburgh
Wedding party outfits – Dorothy Perkins
Cake – Annie Graham
Stationery – Papier
Musicians – Little Red Wedding Band
Catering – Edinburgh Catering Company + Wild Fire Pizza