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Something has recently changed in our relationship.
Mainly me. I have fallen down the wedding planning hole. Sorry, Peter.
If you don’t know anything about us, me (Lauren) and Peter have been together for over 11 years, we met at 19 and 21, spending all of our 20s together and now entering our 30s, the trigger which has undoubtedly brought on this pre-mid-life panic that’s now consuming me.
It won’t come as any surprise to hear that yes, we have spoken about getting married (I feel the conversation was inevitable around year 4) and yes, we do intend on marrying someday. Hooray!
However, we have never discussed the details. We have never had plans, at least not beyond where we would like to honeymoon. We have never had a timeframe. And we still don’t, which is not down to a lack of commitment, rather a by-product of both being introverts and dreading the attention.
And let’s face it, we were just too selfish in our 20s. I wanted a mortgage first (the realist in me wanted some security), we both wanted to travel, and to be honest, no one else was getting married so it simply wasn’t on our minds.
But then social media hit me with a wedding frenzy. I got sucked in surprisingly quickly and made a Pinterest board for the future and well, let’s not dwell on all the details.
The biggest surprise should be that it took me this long to start blogging about it.
Thinking of the wedding I would love, the one I think we will eventually have but also thinking about how different our wedding would have been had we been married all those years ago, I thought it would be fun to start pulling these ideas together to hopefully avoid my usual indecisiveness when the time comes. Why not? I’m looking at it all anyway, so let’s share!
First things first, set a budget. The average UK wedding cost is now over £30,000. This is more than the average annual salary in the UK! Think about that. If you had one year spending nothing, not a penny, and still had to save some more. For one day’s celebrations! I’m stressed at the thought of it.
I had imagined this was only for those really grand weddings, but I now know that it isn’t. Real weddings of any kind are expensive and the costs could quickly add up if you don’t stick within a manageable budget. So make sure to set a realistic wedding budget!
When considering wedding venues I think you need to decide if you want and like big church weddings, wee weddings, hotel weddings, elopements, castle weddings, country houses or barn weddings.
It’s important that you discuss and decide what your priorities are as a couple, luckily, we are very similar so I know we will be looking for an intimate wedding and fingers cross you only do it once, so you should have the wedding you really want!
Going back to thinking of the wedding I would love, and possibly the most intimate option of all, it would definitely be a Scottish elopement. I don’t think this would shock many people that know me, even though it’s something I have only quite recently considered.
I really like the idea of running off and having our ceremony somewhere in the rugged beauty of Scotland, having some really beautiful wedding photography with striking backdrops and wind in our hair (my favourite book is Wuthering Heights, so I may be somewhat romanticising the idea of windy moors, Scottish winds are very strong and very cold). Perfect.
Peter is not so keen on the idea. He said his mum has warned him not to. So I guess that’s that.
Of course, we would both love our families to be a part of our wedding day and witness our marriage but my gosh, it would save on stress and money. I think? If you have eloped, please let me know if this is really the case.
While sadly, this may not be the option that we choose, I have been looking at many pictures and ideas for those, unlike us who may be looking for a place to elope in Scotland.
Long gone are the days of running away for a Gretna Green wedding, although you still can if you so wish.
Scottish Law allows couples to get married anywhere, including outdoors, or at night as long as it is conducted by someone official so you can really have some fun in planning to elope in Scotland!
These are just a few of my favourites
Eilean Donan – It’s iconic. I don’t think I could have avoided adding an Eilean Donan wedding somewhere so let’s do it first. For a cost of £1250 for a small wedding with less than 10 people, you would have exclusive access to the castle. A traditional option but just think of the pictures!
I think Scottish elopements to the Isle of Skye will always be an incredibly beautiful and popular choice, no matter the location as it’s just so striking.
Roulotte Retreat – This may not be to everyone’s taste (I’m thinking of older generations) but I love the look of the Roulotte Retreat. Located in the Eildon Hills, just South of Melrose and not far from the Scottish borders, Roulotte Retreat is perfect for the more carefree and bohemian among you. There are so many options available for the ceremony, be it on the jetty, by one of the authentic French or Dutch Roulottes, or in amongst the pines or by the meadow if it takes your fancy. You can even book a twilight ceremony under the stars. This would definitely be a unique and memorable elopement. Or a long weekend away for something less committal.
Luskentyre Beach – If a beach elopement sounds appealing, this beach on the Isle of Harris is my favourite beach in Scotland. It’s just beautiful, long white sands, clear blue water, some dramatic Scottish hills in the background and you might spot an occasional couple of white horses roaming free if you’re lucky.
The Lodge On Loch Goil – I only learned of this one very recently, during the aforementioned social media wedding frenzy when someone online started posting pictures of their elopement in a treehouse overlooking the loch, but I am so glad that they did because it’s beautiful! And now I get to share it with you.
Drum Castle – We visit Drum Castle often. We’re lucky to live so near to many of the Scottish castles and this is one of our favourites but for all the times we have visited Drum Castle, we didn’t actually realise you could enter the small chapel hidden amongst the trees. We always looked at the building, wondering what was kept inside and if it was now a storeroom but nosiness got the best of me and I walked in on one of our last visits. I would highly recommend Drum Castle if you are looking for something private, but still with a traditional religious ceremony.
Glencoe – Personally, I think that Glencoe is one of the most stunning places in Scotland. No matter the weather or season it’s just incredible and it doesn’t matter how many pictures I see of engagements and weddings there, I can’t help but feel drawn to it. My heart.
Of course, there are many other locations that I love in Scotland but I think I will add a lot of them to other sections.
Until then, i’m off to write more about our holidays. Make sure to take a look at our Scottish travel content for more inspiration.