Natasha and Royce’s Wedding at the House for an Art Lover.

I have known Natasha for many years and was delighted to be asked to photograph her wedding at the House for an Art Lover in Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park. I apologise in advance for the epically long blog post but I asked Natasha and Royce if they wanted to say anything about their day, and they did. Quite a lot in fact, spread over three emails… I’ve taken Natasha’s writing and basically based this blog post around it so you can get a client’s perspective on their own wedding day rather than me rambling on about photographs. Hopefully you’ll find it as inspirational as I did! Above all else it just goes to chow that you can organise a wedding at relatively short notice, and from halfway around the world, and still have an amazing day! Also I wanted to share as many photographs as possible because it was such a perfect wedding – I could photograph days like this over and over and still not get bored. There was so much emotion and friendliness and Natasha and Royce were such a cuddly couple that this was a dream job for me. So, make a cup of tea, get comfortable and I hope you enjoy reading about the thoughts and inspiration that went into my friend’s wedding day!

Natasha (from Scotland) and Royce (from Nevada) now live in Japan (I’ve never been there but I think a trip is on the cards). They planned the whole wedding in just 6 months after they decided that they wanted to get married this year. They only considered 2 venues – Cottiers, and the wonderful House for an Art Lover. The fantastic help they were given from Rachel and Hannah at the HFAAL, as well as the fact it’s close to where Natasha lived in Glasgow, made it an easy decision. Also, the designer of the House, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, was really influenced by Japanese design, which Natasha loves so they were able to combine both homes and places they love. They had to pick a time they could easily get off work, and the start of May is a series of public holidays in Japan so they could come over for a couple of weeks. They wanted a date that wasn’t going to be difficult to book everything for, but that family and friends could make – so they chose May bank holiday Monday 1st! They also love the feeling in spring of new starts and happiness. And the blossom trees and flowers make me her happy.

There was no very obvious theme, but the styling was heavily influenced by 1950s vintage tea dances. Soft colours, afternoon tea for the meal, relaxed, great music…. All the things they love doing over here. Natasha and Royce often get dressed up and treat themselves to Afternoon Tea at a fancy hotel in Tokyo, especially for special occasions, and that’s an element they wanted for their wedding. Natasha says she hates stuffy sat down multiple-course meals, and the House for an Art Lover were amazing for saying ‘do what you want!!’ The chef asked what their favourite menu would be and they came up with their dream menu [I saw it – it was basically cake], thinking if they got half of it they’d be happy, but they made everything!! They also went above and beyond to make a beautiful cakestand full of food for Natasha’s mum, who’s on a really restricted diet. She was thrilled to have something that looked the same as everyone else’s, but was safe for her.

Natasha had left booking her hair and make up quite late and was so lucky that Jessie, one of her bridesmaids recommended Pin Ups. Natasha had known Charly for ages, and always loved her personal style. She went for a trial in the week leading up to the wedding, and didn’t know exactly what she wanted. Charly did amazing things to Natasha’s hair though! And her daughter Mandi is fantastic with the make up side of things. When the trial was done, Natasha knew they’d got it just right. And the icing on the cake – Charly pulls out this 1950s tiara and veil combo, and it finishes off everything – the lace is a really good match, and the crystal tiara matched her necklace perfectly too….. For not knowing what she wanted, they gave her everything she could imagine and more! Charly said that veil had been waiting for ages for the right person, and Natasha was so glad she thought of it for her. They were so much fun on the day as well – lots of laughing, and good banter, and they helped everyone relax and feel good. They did the hair and make up on the bridesmaids too, and when they were done Natasha had Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe standing beside her.

The [amazing] dress – that’s when Natasha says she missed her sister the most, and she really wanted to be able to go shopping with her bridesmaids!!!! Instead she spent a lot of time on Etsy and sent her sister and Jessie (both bridesmaids) tons of photos of dresses that caught her eye. They told Natasha the ones that they liked and could imagine her in. She was tempted by a modern, full length, fitted mermaid design but, she kept going back to a 1950s design instead. Natasha said if she could only wear one decade for the rest of her life, it would be 50s! She especially loves the prom dress shape – fitted top and full skirt, and knew it suited her best. Natasha found a dress with matching jacket that she loved – on Etsy, for less than £100. It was in great condition, but the lace was a little dull compared to others that were shining white. Again though that’s what she liked – it looked aged, and that someone else had enjoyed it before her. The softer colour matched the colour scheme better too…. The measurements on the listing sounded ideal, so I Natasha took a chance and ordered it after her sister and Jessie both agreed they loved it! It fitted perfectly and was more beautiful than she thought it would be when it arrived!

Shoes – Natasha has tiny size 1 feet. She’d really wanted a new pair of shoes for the wedding but didn’t see anything she liked online and didn’t want to risk really painful shoes for the day. She already had a pair of high, pink satin peep toes with a 50s vibe, and decided she’d just wear them…. But, being a burlesque performer, Natasha wanted them jazzed up! Jessie, who runs Exotic Ecdysiast did just that – she transformed Natasha’s shoes into the most gorgeous, sparkling beauties I’ve ever seen! Natasha said it was better than having a new pair.

Rings – Natasha and Royce got their wedding rings from the same Japanese designer and jeweller that Natasha’s engagement ring came from. Her’s is platinum and diamond, in a gentle wishbone, and his is Matt platinum with a polished and cut centre line.

The ceremony – Natasha and Royce didn’t want anything religious, so Humanist seemed the way to go. Their friend recommended the lovely Gerrie Douglas Scott [whom I have enjoyed working with many times in the past] after she had been their celebrant, and they couldn’t have been more thrilled. She was so sweet, and helpful – lots of emails and Skype chats, and when they met it was as though they’d known her for years. She helped them piece together all the parts for a perfect ceremony. Natasha wrote the vows, after she and Royce had thought about lots of ideas, themes, imagery etc. that they both liked and that they thought reflected them both and their relationship. They love The Little Prince and The Princess Bride, so chose readings from them. They were lucky that Natasha’s lovely bridesmaids Emily and Tom agreed to read them. It meant so much to Natasha and Royce to have those words said by their loved ones on the day.
The groom’s clothes – he often wears a full suit for work, so didn’t fancy that, and tried some on but they weren’t special enough. So Natasha made him try a kilt – she said it was the most awkward looking thing ever – the sample one didn’t fit well which put him off straight away, but she could tell he wasn’t into it! So they got him a beautiful blue dinner jacket suit, with waistcoat and black satin trim and accents. They matched this with a pink bow tie, and evening shirt with some Mackintosh cuff links Natasha’s mum had given him.
That amazing cake was provided by Ruby and Pearl Cake Art. Natasha’s sister Emily is good friends with Nicola, the lady behind it all! She’s based in the borders, but was happy to travel to deliver the cake. Emily shared her page with Natasha when she knew she was looking for a cake designer, and she loved her style straight away. Lots of beautiful hand painted coloured finishes, and small details on all the designs, like gold leaf. She was again great to deal with remotely – lots of Facebook messages, and she sent through coloured sketches for them so we could keep updated on her planning, and make changes. Natasha didn’t give her much to go on to start with, just the pink and blush colours, and a hand painted idea, and she came up with great suggestions. It was her idea too for the meringues on top instead of a traditional topper or flowers etc. And she incorporated all their ideas perfectly!! Shells for The Little Mermaid, stars for The Little Prince, and a gold leaf crack down it – in particular they loved the idea in Japanese design of kintsugi / kintsu Kuroi- mending broken things with gold to make it more beautiful. They got to choose the flavour, and picked their 2 favourite combos – white choc and vanilla for the base tier, and almond and cherry for the top!! Natasha and Royce ouldn’t have been happier with it, the taste and design was amazing, and it lasted well. Apparently they had cake for breakfast all week!!
Flowers – Natasha and Royce didn’t want a ton of flowers to overtake everything else, and Natasha wanted silk flowers so that they could take her bouquet back to Japan with them for the party there, and again in America. Natasha’s mum found a lot of cheap flowers locally in Elgin, and Natasha ordered some on Etsy. Natasha says that she’s really lucky that her mum’s super crafty, and she made the bouquets and buttonholes for them both! It worked out really cheap, and they’re perfect. And everyone got to keep them! She also made some of the other decorations like the sparkly jars. [I too was quite taken with the flowers – they were all amazing and you wouldn’t even know that they weren’t real!]
Decorations – Natasha’s friend Suzanne runs Purple Willow Weddings, and she’s always kept up with her lovely wedding decorations business on Facebook. She had spotted the light up heart, sweetie cart, and the blossom trees – the perfect additions to the House. And again the cherry trees brought a bit of Japanese style to the day. Natasha said that Suzanne was super to deal with and really helpful. She even managed to source all vegetarian sweets for the cart at her request, and they moved the decorations to the downstairs during the day so I they have them in both locations.
As a final vintage touch Natasha’s mum brought a beautiful photo with her, of Natasha’s gran and grandad on their own wedding day in 1954. Her mum also surprised her by putting her gran’s lucky horseshoe, from her wedding, on her wrist after we were married.
If you enjoyed reading about this amazing wedding then you can follow me on Facebook and Instagram!

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[…] the sunshine at the House for Art Lover (itself a very popular wedding venue – you can see a wedding I shot there recently here). We had a great time that day and I knew that their Culzean Castle wedding would be a fun day. I […]

Awesome set! Looked like a really fun day.