our blogging groom | yes to the wedding video

Videography. An absolute art and something I admire greatly. As a photographer I take as much inspiration from cinematographers as I do photographers. A well shot film can transcend its content (i.e. I can enjoy a rubbish film if it looks amazing). There are, like in every other field, good and bad...

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helen + paul | solsgirth house

Helen and Paul were married at pretty Solsgirth House near Dollar on 20th April 2014. Big thanks to White Balloon Films for supplying their fabulous video and stills.

We live in London, but Paul is Scottish and I also have Scottish roots so we were both keen to get married north of the border!  We put a weekend aside to fly up and look at venues in the Central Scotland area.  We managed to visit about five and there was just no contest!  We loved the character of Solsgirth House and the fact that the whole house and grounds would be exclusively ours for the wedding day.  We wanted an intimate, romantic ambience within beautiful sorroundings and definitely didn't want to go into a marquee in the evening.  Solsgirth was the right size and ticked all of the boxes."

"I loved looking at Bridal magazines and websites, reading blogs, talking to other people about their weddings... and slowly but surely building up a picture of how we wanted the day to feel and look... and then trying to work out how to make that a reality!"

"I went to three shops and tried on about eight dresses... and found exactly what I was looking for.  I had liked lots of the other dresses, but according to my Mum and Sister, I came out of the changing room in 'the one' grinning from ear to ear and they just knew.  It's hard to describe, but I felt like my name was embroidered into the back of it and it belonged in my wardrobe!  Whereas the others dresses had felt like I was playing at dressing up.  I was not prepared for just how much fun dress shopping would be.  Unless you're a regular at the Oscars, you may never get to try on dresses of this quality and type again, so make the most of it!"

"My lovely friend Jill happens to be a Minister and we were lucky enough to have her marry us.  She made our ceremony so special and personal.  When you say your vows, everybody else in the room sort of fades away.  I wanted to think about every word that I said and say my vows as clearly as possible, meaning every single word from the heart, which isn't easy when you're feeling so overwhelmed and trying not to cry!  Hearing your husband promise to love you for the rest of his life is something that will stay with you forever."

"It was quite a rush getting to the door of the ceremony room and then suddenly the Piper began playing 'Highland Cathedral' and it was happening!  Everything went into slow-motion and a wall of emotion hit me.  I couldn't stop shaking, but it was pure elation and joy!"

"I remember thinking 'I've never felt this happy' right at the end of the night when Paul and I were spinning round on the dance floor circled by our family and friends... another unreal 'movie moment'!   The dance floor was heaving all night and the ceilidh went down a storm - our band Bahookie did a magnificent job of creating a huge great party!"

"I worked hard at lots of details and wasn't sure they would be noticed, but everybody did seem to really appreciate them!  I owe a lot to Laura at Cherry Blossom for my incredible flowers.  She really went above and beyond to create 'the look' I wanted, with lots of tiny vintage vases dotted around filled with the most stunning garden flowers.  My bouquet was amazing - it took my breath away when I first saw it."

"Home-made details included a vintage framed blackboard with a personal thank you message for our guests, kindly made for me by my bridesmaid.   Instead of a traditional guest book, we asked guests to write a message on a river stone (from the local area) and place in a vase for us to display and keep in our home.   We ummed and ahhed a bit over favours and after asking around realised that whilst ladies appreciate and remember favours, men frankly just aren't fussed!  We therefore decided to just provide a wooden crate of pashminas for the ladies.... and even though the weather was unseasonably sunny and hot, they were all taken!  A definite success.  My most favourite detail of all though was our table plan, which we had calligraphied onto a large standing mirror by the very talented Angelo Meola at The Calligraphy Company.  How we ended up transporting the mirror from London to Scotland is a story all by itself (!), but suffice to say that it was definitely worth it in the end!   Oh - and as a surprise for Paul, I also hired giant light-up letters (our initials) for the evening which made quite a statement and looked amazing!"

Helen has some amazing advice for brides to be "Stay true to yourself.  Everybody will have an opinion and you can't help hurting people's feelings occasionally even if you're trying to be so careful to think about everyone!  Stay calm and smile a lot, but stick to your guns and make decisions that feel right to you. My other piece of advice is to spend a big portion of your budget on the best photographer and videographer that you can find.  We're so glad that we did.  When it's all over, your photographs and your video are the tangible things that you have left and you realise just how important they are.  Ours are so, so beautiful thanks to the huge talent of 1500 Photography and White Balloon Films."

You can catch White Balloon Films through their website or Facebook.

getting your budget priorities right

Are you a to-do list loving, Excel spreadsheet creating type of bride, or a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants you'll worry about it later type of bride? I must admit, I'm a bit of both, I love a to-do list, but when it comes to figures and budgets, you've lost me, and I go into 'I'll worry about that later' mode. So instead of going down the details and numbers route, I've picked out the three main things that I think should be on top of your priority list when it comes to budgeting for your Scottish wedding, and the reasons why. It may just stop you worrying so much about the food and drinks packages for a second!

1. YOUR WEDDING RINGS

There is only one item that you are going to look at every single day for the rest of your life after your wedding day - your ring. You might not really have thought about it as integral to your planning or even on the actual day, but your rings are the symbol of your marriage forevermore and I know that I look at mine every day and remember not only the wedding itself but the promises we made to each other when we exchanged rings. So I'm not saying buy the most blingtastic, expensive ring money can buy, but I am saying, have it near the top of your list, and get what you want. Choose a lasting metal (Platinum is the strongest, and does not tarnish) and a style that is comfortable so you can wear it all the time. Check out my Pinterest board for some bling-spiration and put it near the top of your list! It's not often you get to shop for the ring of your dreams, and there is not many pieces of jewellery you will wear for the rest of your life!

2. YOUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHS

So I have said this before, but I will say it again, pay for a professional wedding photographer! You're going to show these photos to possibly everyone you will ever meet, including your future children and grandchildren. They're going to be up on display in your home for years to come, the morning after your wedding you are going to be dying to see them, trust me.

There are a few reasons why I say pay for a professional, one of them is experience. Wedding photography logistics are not easy, getting all those shots you've listed in a short space of time without disturbing your venues itinerary and your guests, is not easy, and you really need someone who has done it before, and knows where potential problems might arise and can tell you prior to the big day.

On that note a professional photographer will tell you what is doable and what is not, for instance, if you ask for 50 'formal' incorporating every member of your wedding party and extended family, as well as all those lovely natural shots that you've seen on websites, your wedding photographer will more than likely tell you that this is not realistic, and recommend a 'second shooter' in order for you to get all those shots you want. These pieces of advice are what you're paying for, so you're not left disappointed when you get your images. Get a printed wedding album, I look at ours all the time and it's such a lovely thing to have for the future. You can take it to show all your relatives and again show it to your future relatives too!

3. YOUR WEDDING VIDEO

The third but by no means last thing I would put near the top of your priority list is your wedding video - this is something that people really leave till last a lot of the time, and I think it can be something you regret not getting! The first thing I thought when I woke up the morning after our wedding was 'I can't wait to see the video!' Again, it's something you will show to many people in the future and something you will be really grateful for after the blur of your big day! If this doesn't persuade you, check out one of Enchanted Wedding Films teaser videos of Andrea & Ross' wedding… perfect length for popping on to Facebook and for relatives far away to watch online!

So, this sums up my top three budget priorities for your Scottish wedding! Enjoy your day and if you have put the above three things near the top of your list, you will have amazing memories afterwards. You'll really see the value in the future.

I hope this helps with your wedding planning! Let me know on Facebook & Twitter.