A wedding is made up of so many beautiful moments. Emily and Steven’s ceremony at Colstoun House in East Lothian was a perfect blend of quiet reflection, deep connection, hilarity and sentiment. Being of different faiths, it was important to them both that they make their life promises to each other in a shared ceremony that reflected and respected their combined beliefs and values. Steven and Emily had chosen to make their legal Marriage declarations to one another in a Catholic ceremony the following day. Their gathering amidst the flowers in the garden at Colstoun was a celebration of their love involving all those closest to them. And it was gorgeous.
As the ceremony began, just before Emily walked up their wedding aisle, two butterflies fluttered about the guests seated on the front rows. We all delighted as the butterflies landed softly on the chairs, the song sheets, the guests. It felt poignant that these two kind-hearted people who care so deeply about the environment should be blessed by nature on their wedding day. And, as the ceremony progressed, we were held by the gentle hum of the bees buzzing about the polytunnel and the occasional gust of birdsong from nearby trees.
We heard the brilliant story of how Emily and Steven first found each other. We reflected on all that had brought them to be standing together on their wedding day. A friend gave an excellent speech which made us all laugh and cry.
We sang a hymn to gather everyone into the space and we talked about love. We heard the magical story of Steven’s proposal to Emily on a boat in the Mediterranean under a sky full of stars. We spoke of their hopes and dreams for the future.
Emily, I promise to always look at the moon with you when you shout “WOW LOOK AT THE MOON!”
To always take time to dance with you in the kitchen
You might not be the best at directions but you are always there to navigate me through life and support me in everything I do. It doesn’t matter about the destination because being with you feels like home.
Steven, I promise to be there for you in times of sorrow, including when you’re sobbing hysterically at Christmas movies
I promise to join you each time you break into dance
I promise to not only grow old together, but to grow together… and when the day comes that we’re old, I promise to look at you with the same eyes and same heart as I do right now.
Steven and Emily’s vows were personal, fun, heartfelt and unique. There wasn’t a dry eye in the garden as we witnessed them sharing their loving words and gifting one another a ring. It was my honour to declare these two brilliant people married to the whistles and cheers of their family and friends.
The ceremony concluded with a Quaich toast led by Emily’s cousin. It involved a healthy dash of Frangelico – a drink Steven and Emily both love and that they enjoyed during their dating days – and, of course, the best men all shared a sip too!
Whenever I meet up with celebrant friends we often talk about the importance of the couple being truly present in their ceremony. It’s such an emotional day, it’s easy to understand how the hype and the logistics might become the focus. What really matters though is being present for each other, knowing you are surrounded by people who love and care deeply for you, being able to connect with the words and rituals shared. We all felt it at Emily and Steven’s ceremony: a relaxed lightness, their deep connection and so, so much love. It was an honour and a privilege to be part of their beautiful day.
Emily and Steven, thank you for trusting me with your ceremony. Here’s wishing you many wonderful adventures in the years to come with all the great walks, sunset paddle boarding, and happiness you could hope for. Congratulations!
Thanks also to Claire Fleck Photography for these stunning photos.