Colourful barn big day with a celeb dress designer and DJ

Megan Holwill & Ian Davidson

12th May 2018

Venue | Garvald Village Hall and The Strawberry Barn, East Lothian
Photography and film | Eilidh Sutherland Photography

couple posing with dog

have previously worked in the wedding industry as an event manager and have seen the great and the not-so-great. Consequently, I had strong views on how I wanted our day to be – and fortunately Ian agreed with them! 

Ceremony and drinks took place at Garvald Village Hall, a former church in East Lothian, before heading to The Strawberry Barn in Dunbar for our reception. We chose the latter because it accommodated our large numbers and I had always admired the team’s approach to hosting weddings: flexible, easy-going and reasonable.

We elected to have a humanist ceremony. Jackie Grant from the Humanist Society Scotland helped us put together something hugely personal and unique that involved lots of our immediate family and was full of laughter. We even arranged for Oliver, our friend’s Staffordshire Bull Terrier, to bring the rings down the aisle for us.

My wedding dress is a story in itself. I was nervous about being the centre of attention and couldn’t get comfortable with the idea of going to a bridal shop and being pinned into samples off a rail. A friend suggested I get a gown made, which is when I found local designer Carolyn Baxter. However, after a conversation with my good friend Gok Wan, he offered to design a dress for me! He sketched one I would never have thought I would wear, but I totally trusted him. Carolyn then very kindly agreed to work with us to bring it to life.

Gok even hit the decks during the reception to create a club vibe later in the night. Our break-dancers and Highland dancers went down a storm in the evening, as did the glitter cannons which discharged during our first dance.

The memories we have from the day will take some topping. Having all our friends and family in one room, seeing all our crazy ideas come together and watching reactions as they unfolded was amazing.

Top tip: “Tap into your own connections, or ask for recommendations. I loved sending an email to suppliers I had previously worked with to say ‘it’s my turn!’. The venue, band, photographer and florist were all ticked off in quick succession pretty much immediately.”

Dress Carolyn Baxter
Veil embroidery Stitched Forever
Appin and Third
Jackie Grant at Humanist Society Scotland
Cake Harvest Tree
Flowers Tattie Rose Flowers
Must Dash
Entertainment Ceremony music by Caitlin Tippin and Simon Ellis; piping by Rich Gordon, reception music by Whisky Kiss
Face painting Fantoosh Face Art
Drinks reception catering The Pantry Edinburgh
Ice cream cart 
S Luca
Table linen 
88 Events
Makeup Sarah Monaghan Make Up

wedding invitiationsbouquet of flowerscar and wedding dressgroom and groomsmenbridal partybride and groom at ceremonydog running up aislecouple after ceremonyflowergirls and page boysbath full of beerswedding carcouple posing on shorebride and groomcouple on shorecouple in front of barnguests on bouncy castlewedding guests jumpingteacups on palletinside the barnbride's trainersthe first danceglitter cannon going off