Remote Coastal Elopement: Simon & Leanne

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Planning a wedding is bloody hard work and sometimes it can all get a bit too much. I’m sure you’ve stressed a little over flower arrangements, worried if your bridesmaids will like their dresses or navigated your way through more family issues than you even knew you had. Big weddings are wonderful occasions but I’m yet to meet a couple who haven’t wondered at some point if that crazy idea to elope was really so crazy after all.

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Simon and Leanne wanted to skip all that fuss and drama and so when they married in April, they decided to do just that – to elope on a beach with just a few witnesses in attendance. The ceremony was held on Saligo Beach, a private beach, on the Isle of Islay. “Raymond and Katherine are the kind couple who gave us the use of their own private beach for our ceremony and ‘after party’ picnic”, began the groom. “They treated us like close friends while we were there. Dr Rev Rob Barlow performed the ceremony. His wife Gwen was also there, and alongside Pete, our photographer, was the other witness. We had a truly spiritual service with an enigmatic magnetism that we couldn’t have wished more for.”

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“We didn’t set out to have a themed wedding, that kind of thing didn’t attract us”, he continued. “However looking back I supposed It evolved into a remote wild coastal elopement. We sourced our rings from Mirri Damer and they were inspired by the sea. This special day evolved by its own fluidity and gathered it own direction and momentum and it carried on this way right up to the moment it happened. We had no set time for the ceremony to take place, apart from a loose arrangement somewhere in the late afternoon/early evening.”

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“We were very relaxed because we knew what we were doing was right, secondly and more importantly it was just us, Pete, Rev Dr Barlow and his wife, plus two impromptu surprise but very welcome guests – a curious Sea Otter and Seal. Combine those variables and introduce Islay, the weather, a beach and the great turquoise divide called the Atlantic ocean then we have a natural but fluid schedule.”

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“It was important to say that we didn’t approach our wedding to ‘just to do something different'”, he concluded. “We approached it from the perspective of what getting married truly meant to us. We both felt that today, weddings can be traps of many things that purport to support you and your day, but actually detract in many ways from the actual reason you are doing it. It can be easy to quickly lose sight of what you want. My advice to future brides and grooms would be to be bold and strip it all back. Ask yourselves what you truly want and do that.”

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  1. Incredibly cool couple! What a beautiful, intimate wedding to look back on. And that dress is amazing! I love the slightly overexposed element/bluish tinge to the photography; matches the weather exposure for that part of Scotland. Very evocative. Brilliant stuff!

  2. Katherine

    aw, gorgeous. Made me weep a bit. Love a wedding where you can really see the love and joy on the bride and groom’s faces!!!

  3. Fran

    I LOVE this wedding. The photos made me cry! Wish we could just elope and do this! They both look gorgeous!

  4. Thanks for featuring the wedding Kat. It was a beautiful day (and night, and next day for that matter). It was a very moving and spiritual experience, and one I will treasure for ever. I feel very very lucky.

  5. jue

    loved the photos, I’m so glad that, my brother simon and his beautiful new bride went off and had this fantastic wedding that means so much to them and will give them great memories. shared a great day with them both when they got back and told us they were married! loved the boots too! Love to you both.x

  6. I love the sentiments behind this marriage which celebrates the most important part of the wedding – getting great shoes! (Seriously though, the love for each other is the main part and so many people seem to forget this along the way..)


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