Stuart Walker Photography was established in 2008, specialising in weddings, portraits and pet photography. Stuart is a national award winner, contributor to several photographic magazines and a speaker on the subject.
I had a chat to Stuart about the couple featured,
“I first met Richard and Helen at Dundas Castle in September 2011 during their visit to the venue to discuss their requirements for the wedding. As they live in England, it was the first opportunity we had to meet each other.”
When I met them, I knew that we were going to have a great wedding day. They are both fun-loving and easy going. A fantastic couple to work with.”
“As I thought it would be, the day was fun and exciting. I arrived at the venue before the bridal party so was there to welcome them.”
“Helen was bubbling with nervous excitement and although outwardly composed, Richard was clearly full of anticipation too. Originally, Richard was planning to wear a morning suit but instead wore a kilt as a surprise for Helen.”
“As the girls were preparing in the Winter suite, the guys made use of the billiard room to relax with the help of some beers.”
“The ceremony was conducted by Ken, a Humanist celebrant, and was relaxed and entertaining, which is characteristic of Humanist weddings. The guests were treated to some beautiful harp music as Helen and her father were piped into the keep.”
“Immediately after the ceremony we ventured up onto the roof of the keep to capture some images using the Forth bridges as a backdrop. Because of the cold, we opted to use one of the castle’s sumptuous rooms for most of the group shots but Helen and Richard braved the February air so we could create the all-important images with the castle as a backdrop.”
“The grand wedding cake, created by Helen herself, was cut in the reception hall using a sword. All in perfect keeping with the rest of the day.”
“The guests were then invited to the marquee to sit for the meal before Richard and Helen were led in and toasted by the piper. The speeches made by Helen’s father, Richard and his best man were very entertaining and marked the end of my role at the wedding.”
Thanks to Stuart for sharing.
Personally, I have known Helen for a few months and was delighted to spotlight her Business on the Blog HERE.
I am thrilled not only to be able to share the beautiful images Stuart has captured but also to share their love story.
I now pass over to Helen,
How did you meet ?
“We met on a cold, dark Tuesday night in November in Candy Bar in the centre of Edinburgh. We had both had a long and difficult day at work and so in line with British tradition were both on a mission to take advantage of 2-4-1 cocktails and drink the night away.”
“Being a Tuesday, the bar was deserted except for Rich and I and our respective work colleagues. Rich and his (then) Manager decided to try their luck with the two gorgeous blondes sitting at the bar and made moves in our direction. They hovered for a time and despite being blatantly ignored, Rich mustered the courage to ask me if I would like a drink. He was met with a vaguely amused sneer but never one to turn down a drink, and fully trained by my mother…. I accepted a cocktail…and another….and another!”
“Neither Rich or I remember the exchange of phone numbers that night but over the next couple of weeks Rich pursued me with text messages and emails looking for a date. (Rich, of course, denies this but if you did a poll amongst our friends you would find a majority agreement with the above!)”
“I finally gave in and invited Rich to see one of my favourite bands play in Glasgow. I picked him up in my beautiful 2-seater convertible – the first car that I had bought myself with my hard earned cash of which I was immensely proud, only for Rich’s first words to be “Is this a kit car?” I nearly slung him out!”
“Later dates also proved to be rather unconventional… I recall when Rich took me for dinner for the first time. It was a nice restaurant and we both got a little dressed up and although nervous, the date went fairly well. However it soon became quite clear that they were absolutely made for each other as when the bill came we both gleefully produced the exact same 50% off voucher! Although Rich wants it to be made quite clear that he played the gallant gentleman and paid for dinner!”
When and how did you get engaged?
“Never a couple to do things normally, Rich finally popped the question on Aprils Fools day 2011! We went to Goldsmiths in Wimbledon where I’d had my eye on one of their rings for quite some time and after Rich had spent a small fortune on something shiny, we got a picnic from M&S (complete with chocolate pot desserts and gin & tonic in gorgeous glass bottles!) and headed to Wimbledon Common.”
“We found a lovely secluded spot, cracked open a G&T each and Rich (ever the traditionalist) got down on one knee and now complete with shiny diamonds, asked me to marry him. Of course I said “Ok…now gimme my ring!” haha! And we lived happily ever after…”
Tell me about your Planning journey.
“I’m not going to lie – I found planning the wedding absolutely, completely and unbelievably horrendous! It is without doubt one of the most difficult, stressful and emotionally challenging things I have ever done! The most difficult part was the guest list and seating plan. Guests chopping and changing, requesting +1’s and then cancelling at the last minute, guests refusing to commit to their RSVP, guests who didn’t RSVP but turned up anyway, guests requesting specific seating.. it goes on and on! Never ending issues!”
“If I had known it was going to be such a nightmare I would have absolutely found a wedding planner to help. I was knee deep in emails, texts, facebook messages and voicemails from the world and his wife and nearly packed it all in! Advice to any new brides – GET A WEDDING PLANNER, PRONTO!”
“On the day, however… it was worth the pain ;)”
When was your Wedding and tell us about the day?
“We got married on the 11thFeb 2012 and there are no words to describe what an incredible day we had.”
“The staff at Dundas Castle were amazing and made sure the day ran perfectly smoothly. Ricarda and Ben, our planners, were there for both of us not only to ensure we didn’t nervously faff too much but they were masters at calming the nerves and boosting the pre-ceremony confidence. Just what I needed as I was TERRIFIED!”
“Stuart, our photographer, was amazing! A genuinely lovely guy, full of banter and some seriously good posing tips!”
“Ken, our celebrant, was an absolute legend! Everyone was laughing and giggling throughout the whole ceremony – I couldn’t recommend him enough!”
“Our piper, Neil, was fantastic and made a traditional Gaelic toast after piping us into the Wedding Breakfast. He was such a character and went down a storm!”
“The Reel Stramash played a stonking ceilidh – even the English guests who had refused to dance before the wedding were up dancing like it was what they were born to do!”
“The food and drink by Prestige were nothing short of perfection. The beef was out of this world and every tiny detail was organised meticulously by the team.”
“All in all it was a truly fantastic day which we will both remember for the rest of our lives. We still can’t believe that it happened and that it’s done, it’s over, we’re married! It’s the start of a whole new era of our lives! It’s so exciting!”
Venue: Dundas Castle, South Queensferry
Catering: Prestige http://www.prestigescotland.co.uk/corporate/default.aspx
Humanist Celebrant: Ken McMillan http://www.humanism-scotland.org.uk/content/celebrants/?id=63-ken-mcmillan
Photography: Stuart Walker http://www.photography-services.co.uk/
Piper: Neil Bell http://www.piperstune.com/
Harpist: Sophie Crichton
Cake: The Cake Empire www.thecakeempire.co.uk
Wedding Favours: Cake pop favours by The Cake Empire www.thecakeempire.co.uk and CRUK “Give In Celebration” cards http://giveincelebration.cancerresearchuk.org/wedding-favours
Florist (Bouquets & Button Holes): Lorna Livingstone http://www.lornalivingstone.co.uk/
Florist (Cake & Tables): Planet Flowers http://www.planetflowers.co.uk/
Ceilidh and Disco: The Reel Stramash http://www.thereelstramash.com/
Lighting: Finix http://www.finix.co.uk/#/home/