Claire and Fraser married at Carlowrie Castle. Their date of 6.10.19 had added significance as it’s an ambigram that reads the same upside down

Claire Richardson & Fraser Macpherson

6th October 2019

Venue | Carlowrie Castle, near Edinburgh
Photography | Camerashy Photography

“Fraser proposed while we were on a bucket-list holiday in the Maldives. On the second-last night, we lifted drinks from the minibar and went to the top of the island to watch the sun go down. It was just before the sun set that Fraser got down on one knee and popped the question.

Back in Scotland, our thoughts turned to planning our wedding. We initially planned to get married within two years and spend around £10-15K. However, we had no inkling just how expensive weddings can be!

We fell in love with Carlowrie Castle on the outskirts of Edinburgh – an ivy-covered venue with contemporary interiors – as soon as we saw it. At that point, we decided to reserve a date three years in advance to allow us more time to raise our budget to £20k.

We knew we wanted to get married in October as it was the month we got engaged. The castle’s façade is covered in beautiful red ivy at that time of year too, which co-ordinated impeccably with the colours of Fraser’s Macpherson tartan.

We felt that a humanist ceremony was right for us. We kept proceedings light-hearted and I even managed to sneak a Friends quote into the wording – I felt it set the tone for the rest of day.

In our opinion, celebrant Tim Maguire is the best in the biz. He makes you do a lot of homework (which you could curse him for at the time), but in the end, all the work pays off as it makes the ceremony very personal. We bought Tim’s book, We Do, which shares many ideas on what you can include in your ceremony.

Fraser is ex-military, so we wanted to make a charity donation to a related cause for our favours. We bought everyone a poppy pin-badge with 100% of the proceeds going to Poppy Scotland. We were really touched as all the guests put the pin badges on their outfits straight away, then when Remembrance Day came, they sent us photos of them wearing our favours.

One tradition that was extremely important to me was to be walked down the aisle by my dad. I know a lot of brides sadly get that chance taken away from them, so I count my blessings that I was able to have that special moment. Seeing me walk down the aisle is a highlight for Fraser too. Hearing the bagpipes play, then seeing me for the first time actually got him quite emotional!

Finding a photographer who would make us feel comfortable in front of the camera was essential. Scott Near from Camerashy did exactly that. Before the wedding, he asked us for a list of guests who we would want photos with, so we got all the shots we wanted. He hadn’t photographed our venue before, but he visited prior so he knew where was best to take photos. He really went above and beyond. We couldn’t be more thrilled with our record of the day. His professionalism and friendliness with guests was fantastic.

It’s so easy to get carried away with planning. Keep it simple and don’t overdo it with gimmicks. If you invite the right people – those you genuinely want to have there – you will hands-down have the best time. I remember sitting at the top table during the meal, looking out at everyone enjoying themselves and thinking: ‘I must take this perfect moment all in’.”

Top tip: “Book a videographer. We didn’t and it’s our only slight regret. We thought we wouldn’t watch a video, but in hindsight I reckon we would have, as we regularly find ourselves looking back at all our photos.”

Venue Carlowrie Castle, near Edinburgh
Photography Camerashy Photography
Celebrant Tim Maguire Humanist Celebrant
Bride’s dress Sophia Grace Couture
Veil House of Veils
Groomswear Geoffrey (Tailor) Kiltmakers
Cake 3D Cakes
Favours Poppy Scotland
Flowers Moody Cow Florists
Table and chair hire 88 Events
Piper GD Bagpiping
Drinks reception music Susan Montgomery Pianist
Reception entertainment Sneaky Treacle
Hair Neelam Merchant Artistry and LB Speciality Hair
Makeup Charlotte Duff Makeup

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