Sally and Ali’s Humanist Wedding at Mansfield Traquair


One of the joys of my job is that I bump into people I’ve married in the most unlikely places. With Ali and Sally, it was in the supermarket, a good eight months after the event. 

What made it even stranger was that I’d shared a lift in the very same supermarket the previous evening with Ali’s parents, who’d introduced themselves after I ungraciously rammed them with my trolley…

Anyway, I was very glad we’d got in touch again, as I’d only just stumbled across these amazing photographs of their ceremony on Jay and Christina’s Elemental Photography Wedding Blog, and they brought the day vividly back to my mind.

Mansfield Traquair is never less than stunning, but the light that day was spectacular.

Heritage Portfolio had done their usual great job of making the place look magical, with a little help from  Narcissus, who did the flowers, and Lynsey who made the cakes.

As you can see, love was very much in the air! 

 Sally’s sister, Gemma, shared the story of Alastair and Sally, which began with Sally working as a waitress in a cocktail bar (sing along if you know it…) and went via a 3 am climb to the summit of Arthur’s Seat, a break-up, a make-up, a separation and a reunion, all the way to  a declaration of intent en route to the beach. Dramatic stuff!
 And Ali’s sister Fiona gave us a moving reading of Oriah Mountain Dreamer’s The Invitation, before Sally and Ali exchanged the vows they had written themselves. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

The whole process had been a real voyage of discovery, as Sally wrote later. 

We came to Humanism through a mutual desire to find a way of expressing and affirming our love and marriage in something more meaningful than simple legalities and the signing of papers.  When we embarked on the process we did not know a great deal about the Humanist Society of Scotland; however, the more we learnt the more it fitted our true feelings and desires for our wedding ceremony.

By the time we were looking for a celebrant and planning the ‘big day’ we knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together.  Still, we cannot recommend enough the process of sitting down and contemplating why you feel the way you do and how you might want to express that in your own personal way; through your wedding ceremony and vows.  

Amidst the whirlwind of wedding planning we found great comfort and solace in the time we spent together, and apart, writing our ceremony and discussing what our union meant to us.  Our focus and attention landed squarely where we felt it should; on our marriage.

Once again, thank you for all your support through a wonderful process, and a great wedding.

No – thank you, Sally & Ali – and Christina & Jay for these wonderful photographs!

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