A Crafty & Fish-Themed Wedding on the Banks of Loch Fyne: Claire & Doug

Unlike in England, in Scotland you can legally be married in an outside ceremony. The photos of this part of Claire & Doug’s day in particular made me fall in love with this wedding. The celebrations were held at Inver Cottage Restaurant on the banks of Loch Fyne. Claire explains, “We went on our first family holiday to Strachur last year and when we stumbled upon Inver Cottage Restaurant on the banks of Loch Fyne we fell in love with it.  We love all things seafood.  It was during this holiday with our 9 month old daughter, Maggie, that Doug proposed.  Directly across from Inver Cottage at the ruins of the old castle Lauchlan. The only place for our wedding ceremony was at Inver Cottage.  We both hated the idea of a formal wedding but wanted to share the day with close family and friends and do it in a personal and well thought out way.”

Instead of a traditional wedding dress, Claire opted for a dress by Dessy, who specialise in bridesmaid’s dresses. “I tried on a variety of ‘classic wedding dresses’ and hated every one,” Claire told me. “I had cut out an image of a dress with a bateau neckline and pockets and instantly fell in love with its laid back yet elegant appearance.”

With this she wore shoes from Dune, a vintage-inspired headpiece from Jenny Packham and carried a Lulu Guinness handbag, shaped like a pair of lips! “Since studying at art school and making handbags I have always loved Lulu Guinness.  I own at least 20 of her bags and have met the lady in person.  She is very 50’s glamour and I knew that was the look I was after.  Rather than having a bouquet of flowers I splurged on a classic lip clutch bag of hers.”

The ‘flowers’ were hand crafted by the bride, her Mum and some of the bride’s willing students (Claire is an art teacher.) “The pupils were especially good at the button flowers,” she explained. “They made my daughter Maggie’s bouquet for me and I love it.  All the fabric was vintage scraps I have collected.  The buttons, beads and pearls came from my Gran’s collection and a couple of friends Mums.”

As well as the laid back and crafty vibe of the wedding, it also had a distinct water and erm…fish theme! The couple put together a number of personal touches to craft the laid back wedding of their dreams. “Our wedding invites were handmade messages in a cork topped bottle. Maggie inviting every guest to the marriage of her mummy and daddy. Using the water beside the venue as inspiration.”

“I grew up with memories of going to the seaside and eating fish n chips from newspaper wrapping and wanted this for ours with a modern twist,” Claire said. “So we bought a few newspapers when Kate and Wills got married for the photograph and headlines, then doctored it by superimposing our faces, and Maggie’s on top of the image of their balcony kiss.  We changed the headlines so that we were the headline news of the day and got it printed locally.  We then made these up into 50 paper baskets for our “fish suppers” to be served in (even asking our local chippy if we could have 50 of the paper trays that they use as the template shape.)”

“Carrying on the fish theme and to add some decoration to the table I handmade 50 clay hanging fish as favours.  I made these by going into school at weekends and using the ceramic room there to add glazes and to kiln fire.  Each one is different and marked with the date of our wedding on the back. Each name tag for table seating plans was stitched on and embellished with vintage beads and buttons to carry the vintage craft theme.”

The entertainment the couple laid on was also quite unique. Firstly they had a friend who plays the guitar serenading their guests outside, and secondly (and again, channelling Claire’s inner art teacher) they asked their guests to contribute to a painting for the couple to then take home. “While photos were happening was a couple of local artists from Fyne Studios where there and our guests were invited to add to a painting of our day that we could take home and have forever.  It was perfect.  Our friends and family painted Inver Cottage, the ruins of the castle, and what was happening on the top, and underneath the water, continuing fish theme.  Maggie added the rainbow.  We finished off the painting by adding two hearts over Inver Cottage.”

Thank you so much to Claire & Doug and their wonderful photographer Caroline for sharing this beautiful day with us today.

Photography Credit: CandySnaps Photography
Venue: Inver Cottage Restaurant on the banks of Loch Fyne
Bride’s Dress: Dessy
Bride’s Shoes: Dune
Bride’s Headpiece: Jenny Packham
Bride’s Bag: Lulu Guinness
Flowergirl’s Dress: DIY (Bride)
Cheese Cake: Selection of cheeses from The Deli, in Troon
Flowers: DIY
Bunting: The Gift Horse, Troon 

10 comments

  1. This looks stunning! I’ve been dragged to Old Castle Lachlan by my archaeologist fiancee on a very wet day when it looked anything but stunning. And my bridesmaids have the brides dress in purple, although I am very jealous of the pockets…now slightly tempted to order one for myself as an evening dress!

  2. Claire

    Hee hee! Great to see our wedding up close again. Our perfect day, captured perfectly by photographer Caroline, thank you!!

  3. beth

    absolutely beautiful wedding, lovely to see such a unique day filled with so many special ideas, very inspiring!

  4. I love the idea of the fish theme. I also saw some wedding photographs recently where the couple had bath ducks, all with different designs, they were so cute. It makes the wedding so much more personal.

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