Real Scottish Wedding: The Signet Library
Let me tell you a story set on a cold, crisp October day, with golden Autumnal sunlight, bright blue skies and the vibrant cobbled streets of Edinburgh's Old Town.
The Signet Library is one of the most luxurious wedding venues in Edinburgh. Nestled in the heart of the Royal Mile, it's a hidden gem if you aren't familiar with it. A beautiful, yet unassuming entranceway hides a stunning staircase and a library like no other. With natural light falling beautifully through the tall windows that flank either side, the lower library is truly spectacular, but it's the upper library that will truly take your breath away.
This story begins at Fraser Suites, with Rosie and her bridesmaids getting ready in the morning with a delicious graze board of waffles, strawberries and pastries, champagne and stunning views of Edinburgh. Rosie's dress was sparkling in the sunshine. The atmosphere was electric with anticipation as hair & make up were well underway.
When the moment came to pop the champagne, Rosie's sister commented on how her bottle exploded with fizz on her own wedding day - well of course that sealed fate and seconds later a new family tradition began. The girls were beautiful in matching pyjamas and freshly topped up glasses. Rosie chose a gorgeous pearl detailed hairband to match her dress, which caught the light almost as beautifully as her oceanic blue eyes.
A hop step & a jump over to The Signet Library, and John and his groomsmen were waiting for their turn for photos. We took advantage of the lower library for photos, with its stunning backdrop of bookcases and old, dusty books from eons past. After a few relaxed & fun shots with the boys, I was back over to Fraser Suites for the final getting ready shots with Rosie. As her mum zipped up the back of her dress and her veil now in place, she was absolutely glowing with excitement. Her golden curly locks perfectly complemented the soft sparkles of her dress and headpiece. When her dad entered for the big reveal, he rushed over for a big hug.
The ceremony itself was to take place at St Giles Cathedral, with its huge vaulted blue ceilings, and impressive stonework. It's truly an architectural wonderland in itself, and for a wedding venue it's a magical backdrop. Rosie entered with her father on her arm, and when John's eyes met his future wife, he melted with happiness. Rosie & John married in a beautiful ceremony, with natural light streaming down through the stained glass windows and pouring golden light into the cathedral. As they exited as husband & wife they were beaming with pure joy.
Outside a crowd had gathered, awaiting the bride's arrival. We took a entire guest group shot on the steps outside the Cathedral before the kicking off the drinks reception in The Signet Library. where the grandeur of the venue was complemented by the warmth of the celebration.
As I reverted back to candids and wove through the room to snap photos of the guests mingling, I spotted the illustrator that Rosie & John had hired to draw pictures of their guests. It was such a fabulous idea for entertainment, and I was super impressed at how quickly she was able to draw each set.
It wouldn't be an Edinburgh city centre wedding without a trip to Victoria Street for couples portraits. As we headed out into the cold, crisp October afternoon, golden light streamed from the heavens. We took a walk down the busy cobbled street, but also found a few moments of privacy at the edge of Riddles Court and once again in the arches of Parliament Square. Their newlywed couples portraits took in all the architectural wonders of Edinburgh's Old Town, perfect for a romantic backdrop in which to celebrate their love.
Upstairs, their wedding breakfast awaited them with round tables adorned with colourful florals & candles amidst the truly stunning interiors of the upper library. Piped to their seats, the happy couple were met with huge applause as they were announced in. The speeches began immediately, beginning with father of the bride then to John for a heartfelt & hilarious speech, and finally to best man Liam who more than lived up to expectations with embarrassing stories of John. They ended on an emotional note, with Rosie reciting a poem that brought both laughter & tears.
The evening reception began with a magician entertaining the guests with his tricks and sleight of hand. The videographer and I were treated to some of his work over the break - I'm still not sure how he got Barry's wedding ring in that sealed envelope!
As night fell, I took Rosie & John out for some special backlit shots along the Royal Mile. I always love setting these up - and there were gasps of awe from passing tourists as they saw Rosie and her dazzling dress. Back inside, we then used the grand staircase and some creative lighting for some of my favourite shots from throughout the whole wedding day.
After the cake cutting in the lower library, people made their way upstairs to be entertained by the band Bleeker for an evening of ceilidh dances and fun covers. Rosie & John excelled on the dancefloor - and I even spotted a few of my photography posing tricks from their engagement session incorporated into their dance moves. Their guests raced to join them on the dancefloor, throwing their arms in the air to the beat and swinging each other around for the first of the ceilidh dances.
It was a day of love, laughter and happiness that Rosie & John will never forget: two beautiful souls in a stunning city celebrating their love for one another.
Venue: St Giles Cathedral & The Signet Library
Dress: Rachel Scott
Makeup: Rae Mathieson Bridal
Video: WN Films
Flowers: Rose and Ammi Flowers
Illustrator: Anna Guajardo
Magician: Jim the Magician