Back in February 2015 I had the pleasure of meeting Kim and Dave, a lovely couple all the way from Hull who had chosen the Cairngorm National Park to celebrate their wedding a little over a year away. I remember it well, not least because we were experiencing heavy snowfalls and had in fact been ferrying couples up from the distillery for their consultations. Always a great ice breaker (no pun intended) and gets the meeting off to a cheery start as they arrive, frost covered, amazed at our snow covered views, then discover our cosy studio, all toasty warm with roaring wood burning stove. But I digress.
It’s now April 2016 and their big day has finally dawned. It’s been so long in the planning with many twists and turns along the way. By far the most significant being a reduction in size to a very intimate 18. Just perfect for my favourite style of intimate wedding breakfast. The week prior to the wedding had been absolutely glorious. But it wasn’t to last – only fitting that the day itself would forecast snow – to bring back a memory of our first meeting.
First stop the very beautiful Ardverikie, famously and affectionately know as Glenbogle – anybody still remember Monarch of the Glen? It is in fact a family home, run by extremely helpful and accommodating staff who simply want your ceremony to be memorable and extra special – like we do really.
Gorgeous plummy aubergine taffeta set on white chair covers. It’s an interesting chair to cover, but the transformation is truly remarkable. Now picture it among the rich red and burgundy tones of those historic rugs. There is something magical about Ardverikie. Whether it’s imagining the famous names who have trod the grand staircase before our Kim would descend them to arrive, beside Dave, to exchange vows in just a couple of hours time. Or maybe it’s the fact it is a historic house but still feels very much like a lived in home. Kim and Dave discarded the more traditional piper in favour of a very elegant string quartet. Another of my favourite things!
Well that’s us all done and Celia and I are off to dress a table up the mountain!
Cairngorm Mountain weddings at the Ptarmigan are unlike any other venue we know. As the public descend after a days skiing or snowboarding (in the sports season) or sight seeing in the summer, the wedding “team” arrive on the funicular to begin working their magic. There is always a buzz. It’s all hands on deck as furniture is pushed and pulled into position by the Ptarmigan staff, floors mopped as the rest of us bag any space we can find to finish preparations. Kim and Dave’s team was made up of some of my favourite suppliers so it was literally like a happy family all beavering away to make their day. We traveled up with the Country Harvest (Kingussie) ladies who had created really pretty floral displays and made a stunning job of dressing our candelabras. Then we arrived to find Angela of Jasmine and Rose Cake Company busy completing the task of building their cake in situ.
Gill and the team of BeeDeck Balloons were also creating some lovely helium displays – inflating at altitude presents its own challenges so always trust a professional! That’s our Gill 🙂
Kim is a graphics designer. So she had quite a clear picture in her head of what their table would look like. The aubergine/plum tone underpinned the whole set up. Then “afternoon tea” was the theme with pots of home made jam for their scones hand finished in hessian. Napkins dressed with sprigs of lavender simply added to the senses. Then of course those great balloons to bring the “party” to the space. The cake was reversible offering a fusion of elegant and fun! It is important to have fun with your day.
The window to get ready for the arrival of the bridal party is not for the faint hearted so having a cohesive team who work well together to make things happen is key. Only when we are all heading back down on that final “crew” carriage can you really say “well done”….and breathe 🙂
As we all arrived back at the base station we caught a glimpse of our bride who looked beautiful, just a hint of sparkle – rather like the delicate crystals which form on top of frost bitten snow. And as if on cue, those snow flakes finally fell. A fitting end to a busy but perfect day.
Later that week they said “We had the most perfect day ever and the decor was SUPERB. So much so, I burst into tears when I came up the stairs from the bar and first saw the table! I can’t thank you enough for how beautiful everything was. We had so many comments about the table and chair dressing combo and just how well everything worked together colour and style wise”.
Congratulations to Mr and Mrs Peacock, we will surely miss working with you!
Highland Occasions by Design,
Banffshire AB37 9DL
Tel: 07976 918185