Laura & Stephen's Wedding
Tell us a little about how you met
We met the modern way... Online!
Although it wasn't quite as straightforward as most - it took us 6 months of on/off chatting, two dating apps, a few forgotten conversations and two failed attempts to meet... but after all that Stephen asked Laura out for Sunday lunch and a drink. Ten hours later we were still in the pub talking. It was a very special day and we've been inseperable since, or as they say, the rest is history!
Talk us through the proposal
On our first date we chatted about everything and anything - Laura is an architect and she'd mentioned her favourite building was a spa in Switzerland by Peter Zumthor. Stephen logged this in his memory and 3 years later, surprised her with a trip to Switzerland to see it, with a cunning plan to propose.
The building, called Vals Therme, is set in The Alps but not the easiest to get to! So, in January 2018, after some careful secret planning, Stephen surprised Laura with a trip to Munich where they stayed the night, after this they drove down to Switzerland to a town called Chur. By this stage Laura had realised they were very near 'Vals' and (she thought) with some clever negotiation she had convinced Stephen to drive up the valley to let her see it. Stephen had of course acted surprised... and was happy to oblige.
Once they arrived, the plan fell into place and its fair to say Laura was more than a little overwhelmed to find out she was staying in the spa hotel as part of the trip.
Once they were shown to the room (and after Laura had calmed down) Stephen asked her out onto the balcony where overlooking her favourite building, he got down on one knee and asked her to marry him.
We wanted to be a little different and had always hoped for a very relaxed and fun ceremony to reflect our personalities and set a tone for the day!
We spoke to Galgorm quite early in our planning about the possibility of marrying outdoors. The team at galgorm were so accommodating and amazing to work with, we found a spot in their garden and started from there. We knew it wasn't possible to have everyone seated but we loved that this kept the day informal and relaxed.
We had Clare Taylor, a humanist celebrant carry out the ceremony, who made it very personal, funny and relaxed.
We picked the Renaissance Suite - it was bright and modern and quite self-contained
Why Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort
Although we both live in Scotland, Laura is from Northern Ireland originally, so it's fair to say we had some debate on which side of the water to have our big day!
Laura had always loved Galgorm and on a weekend home she took Stephen for the tour - we were so impressed by the professionalism of the team and the variety and buildability of the wedding packages. It was especially appealing to us, because we live in Scotland and would have limited opportunities to source suppliers.
Finally, we were asking about 100 people to travel from Scotland, so it was very important to be able to offer our family and friends somewhere that had lots of accommodation choices.
What made you choose a Resort location
Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort have amazing reception rooms, stunning grounds, excellent choice of restaurants and lots of accommodation choices, with the added bonus of amazing Spa facilities!
Tell us the most memorable part of your day
Stephen: When Laura came through the arch in the ceremony space
Laura: Just everything! The morning seemed quite slow and relaxed but once the car arrived at the cottage to pick me up, the time started to fly by!
I loved our ceremony a lot. I loved the fact that we managed to have the first ourdoor wedding at Galgorm and that the weather was kind to us! (Thanks to the team at Galgorm for all the extra touches to the garden to make it happen)
Our wedding was personal, funny and emotional and it was so great walking in to see everyone's smiling faces and to spend the day with all the people we love!
I loved welcoming everyone into dinner, as it was probably the first time I'd had time to say hello to some people. I loved the speeches (they were funny), and the dancing. It was all so good!
Advice for future couples
Everyone told us to enjoy some time, just the 2 of us if we can. They were absolutely right, the day flies by!
Also, don't rush away the next day, stay around, it's great catching up with people for their stories from the day too!
The Dream Team
Galgorm Wedding Planner
Donna Cunningham - who was an absolute star, she shared our vision from the first day she took over our account.
We had the first outdoor wedding ceremony at Galgorm and she worked to make sure everything ran smoothly. The area we got married in was decorated, tidied and attended to by the gardeners before the ceremony. They even added some new and nice touches, like the chandeliers hung in the trees - it all looked amazing!
We made all our own stationery - Save The Dates, invitations, information leaflets, menus, table names, place names, welcome signage, table plans etc.
All the paper stationery was hand printed and letterpressed by Laura and Stephen. We used beer mat board and a neon pink ink - we thought it was modern, bright, colourful and fun.
All the acrylic signs, place names, table names etc, were laser cut or etched by Laura in a neon pink acrylic.
The amazing Gemma's Cakes made our cake - she came highly recmmended by a friend in the wedding business, who told us 'she is simple the best'
We chose three flavours - Chocolate Guinness, White Chocolate and Raspberry and Lemon
Galgorm served our wedding cake just after dinner with tea and coffee - this is the best time to have cake as everyone is still at the table and you're sure they get the chance to enjoy it.
We also added the cake choices to our menu cards, so guests could get excited and know it was coming!
We picked Leaf Designs in Galgorm.
We knew exactly what we wanted as our theme was fairly set by the time we had our appointment - a botanical theme with touches of bright pink
Leaf Designs suggested we used a couple of big focus flowers - the large Queen Proteas, alongside some other vibrant flowers.
The bouquets were beautiful, so different and perfect - much more than we expected and everyone thought they were incredible!
We also asked Leaf Designs to do our table displays. We chatted through lots of ideas but they convinced us to just use big leaves - they looked great!
We picked the Hit List - the band were great and had the dancefloor full all night.
We also had a friend lead a ceilidh at the start of the dancing - we were fairly nervous if this would work but it was perfect. Everyone (Scottish and Irish_ joined in and the dance floor was packed. We are so glad we decided to have a ceilidh, it was a hit!
Decor & Design
The short description of our theme was 'Botanical with neon Pink'
Laura designed and made dozens of tall (16 inch) neon pink candles for all of the tables - these tied in with the tall vases and large botanical leaves by Leaf Design.
We laser cut everyone's name in neon pink acrylic and Galgorm team set it our as their place name on top of letterpressed welcome cards. The card had a personalised menu on the reverse so everyone knew what they had ordered.
We also had named all the tables in a musicial theme and laser cut place name as their favour, but we also encouraged guests to take the candles and the candle holders!
We still love going to peoples houses and seeing them on display!
Neon botanicals, Laura coordinated everythging, designing all the elements. She started with Save The Dates where she came up with a colour scheme of pink neon. We handprinted and letterpressed them and sent them out. This set the theme for the invites, the menus, the name tags and table names.
The name tags, table names and meal tags were laser cut from neon pink acrylic. Handmade candles were dyed the same shade and set against large botanical centre pieces.
The centre pieces tied into the style of Laura's bouquet.
The Glad Rags
Wedding Dress & Accessories
Laura's wedding dress was bought from an Edinburgh Wedding Dress Designed - La Novia
Kelly White Hair
Kelly came to Galgorm on the morning and helped style the bride, bridesmaids and mothers of the bride & groom
Our bridesmaids lived all over the world, which meant that Laura had to go shopping for dresses in Glasgow, London and New York (such a chore!)
Luckily we found the perfect shop with branches in all three locations - with a selection of their own designs and dresses by Vera Wang. The shop was called David's bridal and it was great to be able to let all the girls pick a dress they loved rather than make them all wear the same style.
All the dresses were in a dark forest green.
Stephen had a bespoke kilt made for him by Eight Yards in Edinburgh. This was designed to match the hire kilts from the same shop - but of course be a little more special.
The tartan was Hebridean Ice tartan - this was paired with a navy blue Harris Tweed jacket, brown sporran and brogues.
The Glam Squad
The amazing Jennifer Ireland applied Laura's makeup.
Jennifer was so friendly and relaxing on the wedding morning and the girls loved her company and the makeup lasted the whole day!
Laura had her nails done in Edinburgh before travelling to NI - the salon was Beauty by Victoria (Edinburgh)