A walk with the dogs & a secret wedding

If your idea of the perfect wedding is a low key, relaxing day with the one you love, then Claire and Ewan’s spring elopement is sure to inspire. Their simple and stress free outdoor ceremony for two (plus furry friends), made us smile the moment we saw it. We couldn’t wait to share their story with you…

Love at first sight or gradual attraction?

We met on MySpace, back when that was a thing, about 13 years ago. At first we were friends and it just grew from there. Ewan proposed to me on my 30th birthday and it took us another four years to actually get married.

We were inspired by…

The idea of a big wedding just wasn’t for us, which is one of the reasons we took so long to get married. We started seeing more outdoor elopements and knew that was what we wanted. It suited our laid back, no hassle personalities.

The day was exactly what we wanted it to be – simple, no stress and no fuss. Basically it was a lovely relaxing afternoon in the Scottish countryside, on a walk with our two dogs where we stopped half way through to do the ceremony.

Why Carron Valley Reservoir?

Finding a location was challenging. We knew we wanted outdoors but it also had to be wheelchair accessible and quiet. Not always an easy combination.

We love Scotland’s landscapes and really wanted to get married in the Highlands but it just wasn’t practical for us. Thankfully, we live near Carron Valley and had been there a few times before. After months of searching, we decided to pay another visit with the idea of it being our wedding spot. As we walked around, we quickly realised it was perfect – it had everything we wanted – forest, hill views and the water.

Carron Valley is huge, with lots of little spots that we knew would be ideal for taking photos. It’s also quiet, especially during the week – I think we saw three people the entire time we were there.

In the end, it was perfect.

Were you worried about the weather?

Yes, that was definitely a big worry we had. Everything was outside, there was no backup plan if the Scottish weather decided to turn bad. The location was completely open, with no shelter so if it rained we were just going to have to get wet.

We had looked back at the past few years and noticed April was usually not too bad weather-wise, so we chose that month. We picked the middle of the month which also suited as it was just a few days after my birthday and the day we got engaged.

In preparation, we did take an umbrella. The weather played nice though, and we actually got some sunshine.

Your photos tell the story of your day beautifully. Tell us more…

The first thing we did was organise the photographer. The photography was one of the most important parts for us. The Curries were our top choice and we were delighted that they also agreed to be our witnesses.

Gillian and Chris were amazing, we really couldn’t have asked for better people to document our day. We had an engagement shoot with them a few months before the wedding, to experience a photo shoot and to get a feel for what it would be like.

It was important for us to find a photographer who knew the best way to work with us. A lot of the usual poses don’t really work when you are in a chair, so having professionals who could easily adapt was a must. They nailed it.

We LOVE your outifts! How did you choose them?

We knew we didn’t want to go down the traditional route and wanted something that was a bit different.

One of the challenges of being in a chair is that, typically, wedding dresses are awkward to get into and wear. There was no way I could go into a dress shop and get something. I wanted to wear something that felt comfortable, was practical for being outdoors and suited my style.

After looking around for months, I settled on a pink tulle skirt from ASOS, cashmere jumper from Mango and a leather jacket from River Island.

Ewan’s outfit was a collection of pieces put together. His trousers were from ASOS and we ordered the braces and funky geometric bowtie from Le Colonel Moutarde, which we chose to match my skirt.

For the flowers, I’m not able to hold onto a bouquet, so decided on a floral crown instead. It meant I could have flowers but didn’t have the bother with trying to carry them around. Ewan got some buttonhole flowers and our dogs got some accessories too, Aurora had a floral collar to match mine and Bukowski had a bow tie collar.

Tell us something surprising about your day…

It was a secret elopement. No one knew about it until the next day. Our only guests were our two boxer dogs.

How did your families react when they found out?

When we told everyone, no one was upset and in fact they said it was perfectly suited to us. We called our parents and close family to tell them and everyone else found out on Facebook when we popped on the announcement. It was a surprise to everyone, I guess we are good secret keepers.

Any advice for couples thinking of eloping?

Go for it. We’ve heard so many stories of couples not enjoying their day due to the stress of making sure everyone else was having a good time. Eloping took all that away, we had our day the way we wanted it, letting us concentrate on just enjoying it for ourselves.

Anyone else crushing hard on Claire’s tulle skirt/cashmere jumper/leather jacket combo? Love it! Christina x


LocationCarron Valley Reservoir
PhotographerThe Curries
Hair & makeup – Anne-Marie & Julie from AMM Team
Bride’s outfit – Pink tulle skirt from ASOS, cashmere jumper from Mango and a leather jacket from River Island.
Groom’s outfit – Trousers from ASOS, Braces & bow tie from Le Colonel Moutarde
Celebrant – Sheila Lawtie (Independent Humanist Ceremonies)

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