Clare Harris & Chukwuebuka Nwobi
23rd April 2022
“I am from the Isle of Man and Ebuka is from Nigeria, but we met in Scotland. We got engaged on a walk up Blackford Hill in Edinburgh on 27th December 2020.
With the uncertainty of Covid in terms of guestlists and international travel, we got married on 20th August 2021 with just 20 guests present. We then had our full wedding celebration in April 2022.
We are both practicing Catholics and met at church, so the ceremony was very important. We had a Mass, included lots of family and friends in the service and had prayers in English and Igbo. We organised a small choir of our friends to sing during the service, conducted by Ebuka. It was a special moment.
Sacred Heart is the parish church we attend and, as luck would have it, a beautiful ceremony setting. The reception was held in Lauriston Hall, conveniently right beside the church, which is a brilliant open space perfect for decorating as we wanted. We were able to employ our own caterers and it had a nice stage for the ceilidh band.
Our wedding celebration was multicultural through and through. We took inspiration from Nigerian Igbo weddings and wove in some Manx and Scottish traditions too.
Before the wedding, we sent out Igbo fabric to our guests. Everyone got creative with their sewing machines making wonderful, colourful outfits. I wore a typical Igbo bride outfit: a red Judge wrapper gown. We had alternating outfits: I matched the groomsmen, while Ebuka wore cream to tie-in with the bridesmaids.
Our Nigerian caterer, Eatables Food Company, was outstanding. The manager, Jibola, took on board our suggestions and dietary requirements, created a brilliant menu to satisfy every palate and was especially mindful of those who had not tried that style of food before.
We wanted Isle of Man creamery cheese as part of our cheeseboard dessert. Unfortunately, they would not deliver to Scotland, so we had to persuade several of our guests to bring over blocks of cheese in cooler boxes in their luggage!
My sister is a brilliant cook, so made our wedding cake for us as a gift. Everyone said how beautiful and delicious it was.
Our wedding favours were multicoloured bars of soap from Highland Soap Co. We wanted our non-Scottish guests to go home with a little scented reminder of our adopted country.
Our ‘guest book’ was in the form of a Jenga tower. We now remember the happiness of our wedding whenever we play it.
Dancing is a big part of both of our cultures. We danced into the reception venue in traditional Igbo style, then later in the evening, we performed a traditional Manx wedding dance called Peter O’Tavy.
Of course, we also put on a ceilidh which our guests thoroughly enjoyed. 7 Hills Ceilidh Band played beautifully, called the dances very clearly and were professional to communicate with. We would recommend them 100%.
We wanted the colours of the day to show through in the photos and Chloe Burns managed that impeccably. The church service and the ceilidh were important aspects of the day for us, so we wanted relaxed, unobtrusive photography at those points.
Our favourite image shows Edinburgh in its beauty; we are both smiling and laughing, and our outfits are on full display! Even the cherry blossom was in bloom on the most wonderful and special of days.”
Top tip: “Try not to compare yourself to other weddings. Get your vision in your head and then work to make it a reality. And don’t get disheartened when the to-do list starts piling up. Break tasks into manageable chunks so you don’t get overwhelmed.”
Bride’s dress Made by a Nigerian seamstressWilfred WearsCatering Eatables Food Company Cake Made by bride’s sister Flowers Ollie and Ivy FlowersFavours Highland Soap Co. Reception band 7 Hills Ceilidh BandGroomswear