Relaxed foodie house-party wedding at Wedderlie House

Amy White and Will Rusack

17th June 2023

Venue | Wedderlie House, the Borders
Photography | Chris Guthrie Scott Photography

bride with groom wearing sunglasses holding hand up to camera

“Will and I met on Halloween weekend 2015 at a house party. Our first date involved gin and tonics at the Ham Yard Hotel, followed by cocktails at the Blind Pig (apparently Will’s usual date spot!). The next few dates were filled with exhibitions, museums, dinners, and more cocktails, during which Will convinced me he was into culture and reading – all whilst somehow managing to hide his car and football obsessions!

We have travelled the world together since and there were many moments in the last few years when I thought there might be a proposal. However, in May 2022, he completely surprised me by getting down on one knee and asking me to become his wife in our kitchen at 8am!

Scotland is my home and has always been where I wanted to get married. Will was happy to brave the weather, thankfully, and agreed.

Wedderlie House in the Borders was the only venue we viewed. I called and was thrilled to discover they had June 2023 availability. I flew up from London to visit and video-called Will while there. I fell in love with the 50-acre estate the moment I drove onto it; it had lawns, woodland, a rose garden, a sports court and the most stunning views.

We booked the venue for three nights. As it slept around 42 people, it meant we could really make a weekend of it with our close family and friends. We had canapés, drinks and a relaxed dinner the night before the wedding. The day after, we had a big Scottish fry-up, bloody-mary bar, pizza van and a hot-tub party. We had 140 guests in total.

The morning of the wedding was relatively relaxed as I got my makeup done with my bridesmaids. Will, however, had a very active morning of clay-pigeon shooting on the estate, then a swim in the loch with his groomsmen.

Our ceremony was exactly as we wanted it: relaxed and funny. My stepdad Mike walked me down the aisle, but I had the ashes of my dad in a blue case which was attached to my bouquet, meaning he was with me too.

We managed to get married outside in the rose garden. We’d really wished we might be able to, but didn’t want to get our hopes up as we all know what the Scottish weather can be like.

bride and groom walking and kissinga bride and groom at wedderlie housea wedding ceremony in the rose garden at Wedderlie House

We wrote some personal vows and promises. Two were light-hearted and funny and two were more meaningful. I made everyone laugh with the opening line of my vows for Will that was: “I promise to love and support you through the ups and downs of being a Leeds United football fan. I’ll comfort you when they lose and celebrate with you when they win (which isn’t very often).”

Our favourite part of the ceremony was having our mums sign the register with us, whilst my brother played the guitar, and my bridesmaid Alicia sang ‘Ma Cherie Amour’.

I’m a detail-oriented person by nature, so I did sweat the small stuff! I couldn’t have been happier with how everything turned out though.

We got our own wedding logo designed by a graphic-designer friend, James, that featured on all our stationery. I got it printed on stickers for wrapping presents with. We even had a flag emblazoned with it flying at the venue, and I’ve since had it tattooed on my ankle!

The only problem I encountered was with my wedding dress. After a seven-month wait, it arrived made in the wrong material and covered in black marks. The second time around, the stitching was faulty, so I hoped for third-time lucky.

I had been advised to size-up the dress to allow for alterations, but as hard as the seamstress worked, it still didn’t quite fit around the bust. I treated myself to an embellished crêpe party dress by Rebecca Vallance for the evening and I felt so much better putting that on!

We adored Chris Guthrie Scott’s portfolio on his website. His work wasn’t just about the wedding, but the surroundings, scenery, reactions and emotions. On the day, he brought moments of calm during our photo sessions and ensured we savoured every moment. We are blown away by our photos.

We also loved what our wedding caterers, Pantry Events, did. We had an incredible day in February 2023 at their warehouse doing a tasting menu and sharing ideas – we really got to create the whole feast.

We ended up with a sharing starter of burrata, followed by chicken with a haggis spring roll. Instead of a plated pud, we served dessert canapés which were a big hit.

After the best man’s speech, we had a surprise sax player and cocktail hour with negronis and espresso martinis. Everyone was up dancing on the chairs and swinging their napkins. It was so much fun and a great way to end the meal in the marquee before we headed to the barn for the evening.

Our reception was wild! Our first dance was to ‘Say You Won’t Let Go’ by James Arthur, performed on guitar by my brother, Finlay. The dance floor in the bar was packed all night. Our band were absolutely fantastic, and our guests were the best partiers.

Top tip: “The best thing we did was to go out to plan our wedding,” says Amy. “Over dinner and drinks, we’d discuss what we needed to book next, then follow up with another date night a week or two later. That way, we weren’t speaking about the wedding constantly. It made the planning more fun and took the pressure off a bit.”

Venue Wedderlie House
Photography Chris Guthrie Scott Photography
Filmmaker StrangeWorx Wedding Films (scroll onto see)
Celebrant Lenny Love, Celebrate People
Bride’s evening dress Rebecca Vallance
Bridesmaid dresses Maids to Measure
Flower girl dress Coast
Hair Hair By Rosheen Warnock
Makeup Rae Mathieson
Groomswear Kinloch Anderson
Groomsmen Hired from Slater Menswear
Catering The Pantry Events
Pizza van (following day) Pizza Paddock
Cake My Sweet Adventure
Flowers Briar Rose Design
Stationery PaperGrace
Venue decor DIY
Favours Lottery scratch cards
Rings Wyatt Jewellery
Ceremony music Finlay White and Alicia Welland
Drinks reception music Mileva Corenthin
Reception band Cassien Band

a close up of a wedding dress on a hanger that reads 'Let's Dance'people wearing tartan trousers standing against a red stone buildinga bride and a man in a kilt walking down an aisle for an outdoor wedding ceremonytwo men shaking handsguests seated for a wedding ceremony outdoorsa bride laughing as she drinks from a silver quaichcolourful wedding bouquetsa close up of a bride and groom during a wedding ceremony at Wedderlie Housea bride and groom walking in the grounds of Wedderlie Housea bride walking in a field with 5 bridesmaids wearing pale green dressesa bride and groom pose by a green barn door at Wedderlie Housea bride and groom walking past the exterior of wedderlie housea bride and groom wedding portrait at Wedderlie Housea bride and groom seated on a brown chesterfield sofaa person in a flower dress making a speech as people watch ona groom making a speech as bride looks on surprisedan ivory buttercream wedding cake and glasses with negronis garnished with orange on a wooden tablea bride and groom swinging napkins beside a person playing a saxophonewedding table dressed for dinner with illustrated dog table marker and illuminated sign in backgrounda bride and groom dancinga colourful bouquet of flowers and wedding rings in boxes