Mark and Mia got married on the 26th March at one of my most lovely wedding venues in Abu Dhabi; Yas Links Golf Club, Yas Island. Joined by 80 guests this wedding was pulled together on the day by one of my lovely vendors; Lavender Blue. Mia tells her story of how she planned for her dream wedding.
The Planning process…
We pretty much planned the full day ourselves with the help of our parents. It was a mostly enjoyable experience until a couple of months before the big day when It all becomes a bit much to deal with. It was at this point we enlisted Lavender Blue to take over from us and I’m so glad we did. They were totally professional and knew exactly what needed to be done. We hadn’t budgeted for wedding planners in the beginning but it really was money well spent. It gave us time back to enjoy the process and allowed us to think only about ourselves on the day. Everything else was taken care of.
We started off with a very reasonable budget as we were conscious spending too much money on one day. However that soon got smashed thanks to our all day open bar (amongst other things) But it was totally worth it, Thanks Dad!
The Wedding Dress… and something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue.
My dress was by Amanda Wyatt as was my Tiara and Veil, I attached my own belt to the dress which I got from BHLDN (Vintage Inspired Wedding Dresses). It was a pricey addition but it just set the whole look off. I wore diamond jewelry I was gifted on my 21st birthday (something old) from my parents and from grandparents (who couldn’t be at the wedding) so there was plenty of sentimental value there. I have a beautiful Tanzanite ring that I wore as my something blue, I borrowed my sister in laws underskirt from when she married my little brother, I also wore a beautiful Chanel bracelet that was gifted by one of my clients (something new), very kind and it looked great on the day.
Finding the dress…
After looking for what seemed like decades!! I bought my dress from Juliette’s Bridal boutique in Glasgow UK, the lady there Margret was soo lovely we had such a great experience with her, she was so patient throughout the whole process.
I was surprised I went for something so plain and simple. I always thought I would have a massive and fussy dress but when I put my dress on for the first time I loved it instantly and felt like a princess, I even got a lump in my throat. But I still had to keep trying on another 100 dresses between Dubai, Manchester and Glasgow before I was sure it was the one, nothing else even came close. I just love it.
Grooms Attire was from Next, I had a specific colour in mind for Mark and the groomsmen, when I saw these light blue summer suits I knew we had to jump on them. It was still 10 months before the big day at this time and Mark was in no rush to get them but I didn’t want to miss out So there was a LOT of heated discussions over the suits. We spent about 4 weeks racing up and down the UK to get all the correct sizes we needed for all the men, plus we bought extra for material to use for Marks Waistcoat and our 2 page boys outfits, which we had made especially here in Dubai.
The Readings + Music…
We didn’t have any readings as part of our service, we did however have some, extra special, additional speeches in the evening my Father In Law said a few words and I’m so happy he did. Mark, my husband, has no siblings so this is the (hopefully) one big family wedding for his side, so I really wanted his parents to be involved as much as possible, which they were, probably to their own despair.. haha! I also had some lovely words from 2 of my bridesmaids.
Music – We were piped down the aisle and into dinner by the lovely Fraser Galloway of the Dubai Pipe Band. Pipes were important for me being Scottish I always wanted to have a piper on my big day and it’s not easy to find them in the UAE. I had such a lump in my throat every time he played the sound of the pipes definitely stirs up emotions! During our cocktail hour and during dinner we had fantastic entertainment by the wonderful Abbo. We actually heard Abbo play as we were leaving Ripe market one afternoon and the sound of his voice stopped us in our tracks, we knew immediately that we wanted him to play at our wedding. He has this beautiful gravelly voice, unique style and such an engaging personality it was the perfect sound track to our day. We are still massive fans and try to support him at all his gigs in Dubai. He is a real star. Into the evening we were entertained by the lovely DJ Ant Scott-Lee who kept us dancing on the tables (literally) until the wee small hours.
Bliss flowers provided the bridal and bridesmaid bouquets and the men’s corsages. I had peonies as my main flowers as I just love them and have to say that bliss totally met my expectations and more, I loved all of our flowers so much, it’s such a shame they only last a couple of weeks
The Details + Décor…
The wedding ceremony took place on the beautiful lawn overlooking the golf course. With such a stunning backdrop the wedding setup was very clean and simple using white chair covers and a white ceremony arch finished off with delicate pots and vases lining the walkway.
For the wedding reception, the simplistic and understated style continued through. Each table had a birdcage centerpiece with fresh ivy twisted round the base. Tealight candles garnished the tables to add a soft glow when the sun set. An array of candles and fairy lights were used on the balcony terrace to continue the theme. The guest book table had a beautiful letter box displayed with personalized cards for guests to write their wishes on. White decorative hearts and wooden boxes were added as finishing touches.
My bridesmaid’s dresses were just stunning. It was important to me that they all felt amazing on the day and despite at first being unsure of the colour I think they all looked incredible and felt amazing. The dresses were from Coast.
Our cake was a bit of a disaster- It tasted great but looked awful, I asked for a specific type of topping as I am not a fan of sugar icing so the caked looked lumpy and not very pretty on the day. It was so bad I could only laugh by that stage, We managed to disguise it with some pretty ribbon and decorations. It also came out with sparklers so nobody could really see…lol.
We have a fantastic honey fund that all of our fabulous guests contributed too – we have not managed to take time off from work yet to have our honeymoon but September in Bali is looking strong right now.. I can’t wait to be there and just reminisce about our day.
Having a very chilled morning with all my girls, mum and mother in law.
Walking down the aisle with my father is a moment I will treasure forever – it was soo over whelming and the point where all of our planning just came together, it’s that moment you imagine for almost your whole life – it was a real sweet spot of the day.
The Wind! It gave my handsome groom a Mohican like hairstyle for most of the ceremony and gave us all a lovely windswept look for the photos..
Confetti moment with my new husband was an amazing feeling.
My father in law realized the night before the wedding that he had left his suit trousers in the UK – After a panicked drive back to Dubai that evening we could not believe our luck that we still had one full suit left over in his size from the extras we had bought.
My Nephew dancing ALL night like the Duracell bunny – we thought somebody had put something in his drink!! He was just having so much fun and was so in the moment, every single guest got touched by his energy.
Lastly sparklers on the terrace – dancing on the tables and 2 guests leaving in Wheel chairs – It was an eventful day!! Lol.
Advice for other couples…
Definitely utilize a wedding planner somehow, the girls from Lavender Blue were like wedding angels, they set up our venue exactly as we wanted and made sure the day went without a hitch, sticking to our tricky time table throughout the whole day. I know it would not have been the same day without them and we are so grateful. We had zero to do on the day… just the way it should be. I highly recommend them.
Always consider sugar icing if you want a perfect looking Cake!
It really does go by in a flash, take your time to savour every moment that you can.
Photography – John Elphinstone Stirling
Venue – Yas Links Golf Club, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.
Hotel – St Regis Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi
Videography – Envision Films
Celebrant – Helen Schrader
Wedding Planners – Lavender Blue
Flowers – Bliss Flowers
Cake – Chocoa
Entertainment – Abbo & DJ Ant Scott Lee
Piper – Fraser Galloway
Hair – Scott Anderson
Sound and Lighting – Phoenix LAS