Nicola Burleigh & Gavin Ritchie
13th August 2021
“Gav and I have been together since 2015. We got engaged five years later in August 2020. After spending all of lockdown stuck with each other, we knew we wanted to stay together forever.
He took me to a country park near where I grew up with a picnic and a ring and proposed at a gorgeous spot, hidden down by the river. It’s a place we now love to revisit that feels like it’s just ours.
We initially wanted a small, intimate wedding with just close family. However, when we started thinking about who we would invite, there were so many more people that we felt it was important to have there to celebrate with us. We had about 100 join us for the ceremony and evening party and 73 at our meal.
Covid made planning extremely difficult for us as the rules kept changing. I think the most annoying thing was not knowing how many people we would be able to have, so we had to plan for 20, 50 and 80 guests. This meant we couldn’t organise things like table settings because we had no idea how many tables we would have. In the end, we just planned for the best-case scenario and were extremely lucky that rules relaxed just a few days before the wedding.
I spent hours on Pinterest looking for inspiration. I actually found our photographer, Roma Elizabeth, through the platform. I really wanted my wedding photos to be bright, airy and romantic. As soon as I saw her work, I knew she was the right fit.
Roma made us feel so relaxed. We went for a walk around the Barras for our couple portraits. As well as getting gorgeous photos, it allowed us time to ourselves where we would could just soak it all in.
We had a traditional religious ceremony. It was really special to us as the minister who married us was my Grandpa. The ceremony took place at Parkhead Nazarene, my family church in the east end of Glasgow, which was only 10 minutes from our reception venue, Barras Art and Design.
I fell in love with BaAD when I visited it as a potential wedding venue for my sister the year before. I adored the open, bright space and glass ceiling. It was full of character, yet felt really intimate and relaxed.
Gav and I own a pizza business and work at a street-food venue in Glasgow, so wanted our wedding meal to reflect this. Guests could go up to stalls and choose from a range of tacos, burgers and kebabs. Everyone loved it!In a similar vein, our favours were gummy pizza sweets in miniature pizza boxes with a customised stamp.
I had the most fun choosing a wedding dress. I wish I could shop for wedding dresses all the time! Bijoux Bridal in Hamilton really treats you like a princess and I had such a magical experience. I had a look in mind and what I ended up with was pretty close to how I imagined: simple on top with a layered skirt.
Our wedding cake from Bake Bake was absolutely stunning. I had relayed my thoughts to Karen, our cake designer, about my vision, but I didn’t see it until the big day. I was blown away with how dreamy it was! It was truly a work of art and everyone commented on how beautiful and delicious it was.
I adored doing all the ‘traditional’ wedding stuff: the classic vows, cutting the cake, first dance etc. Because that’s always how I’d imagined my wedding growing up, it felt like I was getting to live my childhood dream by including all those wee rituals.
My favourite photo from the day is one of us doing our first dance to La vie en Rose by Michael Bublé and Cécile McLorin Salvant. It really captures the romance and magic of the moment. I also love being able to see all of our loved ones looking down on us from the balcony.”
Top tip “I found it really helpful to be on a Facebook group with other brides. It’s great for asking any questions no matter how small or silly. Everyone was really supportive and gave great tips and advice.”
Ceremony venue Parkhead Nazarene Church
Reception venue Barras Art and Design
Photography Roma Elizabeth Photography
Bride’s dress Bijoux Bridal
Bridesmaids’ and flower girl’s dresses JJ’s House
Hair Erin Kempton
Makeup Stephanie McDowell
Groomswear Robert Nicol Ltd.
Cake Bake Bake
Flowers Natalie Dalziel Flowers
Stationery Table plan and signage created by the bride