Kayla Scally & Adam MacAlister
24th September 2020
“Adam and I got engaged on Christmas Eve 2017. He organised a cosy evening watching Christmas movies in front of the fire and suggested we exchange a small gift each. He got a silly pair of socks, while I opened a box with the most gorgeous ring inside. It couldn’t have been more perfect.
Our wedding planning, on the other hand, was not plain sailing. Our original date was set for May 2020, slap-bang in the middle of the first lockdown, so we had no alternative but to reschedule. Like many others, we were naïvely convinced that everything would be blown over by the summer and consequently rescheduled the entire wedding (and honeymoon) to July 2020.
In early June, we realised things weren’t looking good, so we moved it again – to 24th September 2020. We decided that no matter what, we would get married on that date, whether it was with 120 watching on, or just us, two witnesses and our celebrant.
However, as the September date approached, our then venue broke the news that the wedding we had originally envisioned would not be able to take place under the current Covid guidelines. Needless to say, I was crushed – especially realising we would now need to find a new venue and inform all the guests and suppliers yet again!
We were so determined to stick to our date that we came up with another plan: a low-key, backyard wedding with a small marquee. I’m far from low-key, so the thought of a ‘white gazebo’ set-up was not making me feel excited in any way – until I came across Below Canvas and their incredible tipi weddings. Thankfully they were available to provide a tipi for 20 on our chosen date at our new venue: South Barlogan Farm in Bridge of Weir.
South Barlogan Farm is a new wedding venue that caters to rustic, intimate weddings. We were so blessed to have found it at the last minute. We fell in love with its gorgeous views, fantastic accommodation and the privacy it offered.
I wanted our tipi to feel warm and inviting with plenty of fairy lights, casual seating arrangements and rustic floral arrangements and decor. This boho, autumn aesthetic was a world apart from my original blush and rose gold colour scheme, but thankfully, decor company Purple Willow Weddings and florist Posies and Pots helped me bring it to life.
Posies and Pots’ Karen went above and beyond. I had no knowledge of flowers at all, but she was able to read my mind and deliver exactly what I was envisioning. She is also one of the most bubbly and optimistic people I have ever met. It was a pleasure dealing with her during stressful times.
Suzanne at Purple Willow Weddings was another hero of the day. She worked tirelessly alongside Karen to get the tipi looking magical. Any kind of decor I wanted for the day, she had and was willing to order in anything she didn’t have.
Our ceremony was comprised of a mixture of Christian and personal elements that our interfaith minister, Lindsay Anderson, put together for us. She was on the journey with us throughout the pandemic and kept us positive. She also played a huge role in helping us understand the legal side of getting married and exactly what we had to do to make sure everything was sorted before the big day.
Lindsay added a special touch of lighting a candle for all our loved ones that couldn’t be there during the ceremony. The best man also organised a Zoom call for all our family in England and South Africa that couldn’t attend. It was special to know they were watching and raising a glass to us.
I walked down the aisle to The Rose by Westlife played on the bagpipes by a friend of ours. It was stunning and a bit different – made even more special as it was my late Gran’s favourite song.
The highlight of the day was finally getting to stand with Adam at the altar and see him well up. We both had climbed mountains to get there and it was a huge relief to finally be saying our vows.
It was important to us that our photographer was down-to-earth and relaxed, but also able to give us direction. Jon Ramsden did a superb job of capturing us on the day, both during the candid moments and helping us look natural for the posed photographs. We are thrilled with how the pictures turned out.
Our guests were particularly impressed with the food by catering company Regis Banqueting. We ended up opting for a gourmet barbecue of steak, lamb, chicken, halloumi and loads of sides and salads. They put together all the leftovers for us to enjoy later on in the evening too.
Seeing as we couldn’t have any entertainment, we played wedding bingo and had a pub quiz. They were the perfect way to pass the time while waiting for dinner to be served. It created a bit of friendly competition between the families and was such fun! I would highly recommend organising something along these lines.
We hired a ‘Vancouver Pod’ mobile kitchen and bathroom set-up from The Temporary Kitchen Company. They were an affordable and essential investment for an outdoor wedding. The team came in on the morning of the wedding and set up without a hitch.
What surprised me most about getting married? That it is such an expensive process. I was taken aback that a DIY wedding can actually end up costing almost the same as an all-inclusive hotel wedding. The budget can totally spiral out of control if you do not stick to it.”
Top tip: “For outdoor tipi and marquee weddings, ensure you think about power supply before anything else. It can be pricey as we had to organise two silent generators (one for backup) to allow us to power the toilet and lighting. Also make sure you allow ample budget for heating. We definitely should have made it more of a priority, as it got very cold once the sun went down.”
Tipi (including furniture and festoon lighting) Below Canvas
Interfaith minister Lindsay Anderson
Bride’s dress Wed2B
Groomswear Houston Kiltmakers
Mother of the bride dress Mia Bella
Flowers Posies and Pots
Venue decor Purple Willow Weddings
Catering Regis Banqueting
Wedding rings Ernest Jones
Hair and makeup Dara at The Aisle
Piper Michael Cumine
Music Spotify playlists
Favours DIY mason jars filled with chocolates with handwritten notes
Pop-up kitchen and bathroom The Temporary Kitchen Company