Ayrshire garden wedding in a family home with a BBQ and dogs as flower girl and ring bearer

Shaun Drysdale and Sarah Clark

9th July 2021

Venue | The Manor House SeamillPhotography | David Long Photography

a bride and groom standing in a garden with two dogs

“Shaun and I have been together since October 2013. Sitting in front of the fire on NYE 2019, in our living room and surrounded by our two gorgeous fur babies, Shaun asked me to be his wife. It was perfect.

Our initial wedding was scheduled for September 2020, but we pushed back to 2021 to ensure that our family were safe. Covid was everywhere at that point and as much as we wanted to celebrate our love, we didn’t want to do it without those that mean the world to us.

We always knew ours would be an intimate family wedding. We really thought seriously about who we wanted to share our day with and who would help us make new memories. We invited 20 guests to the ceremony with 30 more joining us later.

The Manor House Seamill was our venue. It is also the house I grew up in. There was something magical about getting ready for my wedding in the bedroom I grew up in as a child. The aisle was where I played with my siblings and rode my bike! The place instils a sense of calm, love and family that I haven’t ever felt in a commercial venue.

My brother Cameron Clark who now runs the venue really helped us shape the day. He built a new bar, planted thousands of flowers and even installed a new sound system all through the garden – there wasn’t anything he didn’t think of. He was phenomenal!

We were looking for a personal ceremony, something that celebrated the individuality of our relationship and Karen Walker was outstanding. You could feel the love in our ceremony, with a few laughs thrown in of course. Karen really got to know us, as a couple and as people. We can’t recommend her highly enough.

Shopping local was a big factor for us throughout our wedding plans. Lockdown was hard on a lot of companies, and our local shops kept us going – returning to them now is the least we can do. That’s one of the reasons we earmarked The Handmade Cheesecake Company to supply our wedding cakes. Francis and the team were brilliant. We were given the opportunity to come and trial a load of different delicious flavours, so picking just four was a tough decision.

Sharon’s Bridal Boutique is an Ayrshire company too. Sharon was great! I had no idea what style I wanted so she made me try them all. It was brilliant and often hilarious, but she took her time, made us feel special and when we found the one – we instantly knew. She sorted out the alterations, delivery and was a joy to spend time with.

Our stationery provider was The Village Invitations Company. She also helped us with our favours. She was instantly able to suggest what we needed and came up with ideas, colours and patterns that we wouldn’t have thought of. All her work, right down to each and every favour, was flawless.

David Long Photography was, without question, the only photographer for us. He specialises in putting everyone at ease, getting to know your personal story, and capturing those moments that you don’t think to ask for. He was really thorough and visited the venue a bunch of times to make sure he had scoped out the best locations. And for a man of over six foot, he was practically invisible on the day. We still have no idea how he managed that!

Shaun and I have been together for almost nine years. We know what loving each other means and feels like, but on that day, something changed. It turns out there is a difference between fiancée and husband/wife. There is a feeling, that I can’t really express. The love grew and there’s a fullness I’d never felt before.

In a nutshell: our wedding was like a big family get-together: BBQ, booze and killer dance moves – but everyone was dressed up and two crazy people got married, with our dogs as ring bearer and flower girl!”

Top tip: “I would recommend wedding-free days. There is a fair amount to do, and all of it is very exciting, but make time for each other, just as partners without talking about the wedding. Go on a long weekend break, or a day trip – whatever you want, just don’t talk about the wedding.”

Celebrant Karen Walker Humanist
Bride’s dress Sharon’s Bridal BoutiqueGroomswear Clyde Kilts
Catering family BBQCake The Handmade Cheesecake CompanyStationery The Village Invitations Company
Favours Cardhu whisky and raspberry gin miniatures
Music “Officially David Young – DJ extraordinaire. Unofficially, 50 drunk people in the garden singing away quite happily. David also helped us compile playlists for various parts of the day. He was great”

exterior of the manor house seamill dressed for a weddingrustic style place setting with ivy and key wedding favourmirrored personalised wedding sign decorated with succulentstwo men in kilts with dogs standing at a bara bride and groom during a wedding ceremonywedding ceremony of bride and groom outside at the manor house seamilla bride and groom tying the knot with tartan during a handfasting ceremonyblack and white image of a handfasting during a wedding ceremony at the manor house seamilla bride and groom kiss under white wisteria with celebrant watching ona bride signing the marriage schedule with celebrant advisingbride and groom standing in lush garden setting at the manor house seamillwedding welcome sign with red chiffon and pink blossom flowersa bride and groom pose with a bridesmaid wearing green and a man in a kilttwo staffordshire bull terriersa family group image at a weddinga man in a kilt making a wedding speecha neon sign reading the outback with cakes from the cheese cake company on a tabledog cake toppersbride and groom cutting a wedding cheesecakea bride and groom doing their first dancebride and groom first dance as guests look ona bride and groom on the beach at Seamillbride and groom on the beach at Seamillbride and groom on the beach watching two dogs runninga bride and groom drinking colourful cocktails on a cocktail treeguests at a wedding posing for a selfie