Why You Should Consider an Elopement Wedding on the Isle of Skye
This month usually signals the start of wedding season, but 2020 has other plans! Whether you were planning to tie the knot later in the year or are thinking about your 2021 wedding, we’ve been thinking about what weddings might look like post-lockdown and talking to our industry friends about what options you have if you’re still hoping to plan a wedding in 2020.
Today we’ve invited Lynne Kennedy Photography, a specialist elopement wedding photographer from the Isle of Skye, to tell us more about why an elopement wedding is the perfect option for you if you’re determined to tie the knot sooner rather than later.
There are a few reasons why you might choose to elope instead of planning a more traditional wedding. Perhaps there are family issues that make a normal wedding feel difficult or maybe the cost is causing concern – you might prefer to splash out on a few close family members & friends rather than stretch your pennies between 100’s of guests. It could even be that one or other of you not wanting to be the centre of attention, and instead you might prefer a very intimate ceremony focused just on the two of you!
And with the number of guests at weddings likely to be restricted for the foreseeable future, a beautiful, outdoor elopement wedding with just a few guests (and a big party later!) might be a way to ensure your wedding goes ahead this year!
It is a very personal decision and often one which is not made without a lot of thought, but for some couples it is just the right way for your marriage to begin.
What makes the Isle of Skye so special for an elopement wedding?
Skye is the perfect elopement destination because it offers romantic seclusion for couples but also the opportunity for some adventure, if you want it. There are numerous quiet and epic locations for the ceremony where you are completely surrounded by nature. The island also makes the most incredible backdrop for photographs with mountains, cliffs, sea, waterfalls and beautiful lochs.
What kind of elopement wedding can I plan?
You can plan whatever you want! If you are adventurous and would like to do a bit of a hike for an early morning ceremony that’s an option. If you’re not early birds and would prefer to have a lazy start to the day and then perhaps have a ceremony in the late afternoon and then go for a wonderful meal, or even just head straight back to your accommodation and hunker down! And you want to spend the whole day taking photographs in lots of fabulous locations, then that’s what you can do!
One of the bonuses of eloping is that you can tailor make a day based entirely on what you want.
Most of the time my couples will incorporate some Scottish traditions into their ceremony, a handfasting and drinking from the Quaich (cup of friendship) are also very popular. You can also write your own vows to your partner so it can be as personalised a ceremony as you want.
What’s the best time of year to plan an elopement in the Isle of Skye?
To be honest, if you can avoid midsummer, then that’s a good idea. It is the time when there are the most tourists on the island, so travelling takes longer and finding really quiet spaces is a little harder –not impossible but harder. Also, the Scottish midge (Google it!) is very prevalent in the summer and it can make being outside not so nice, particularly if the weather is very calm and/or drizzly, which the little millions of midges love! You don’t want to be scratching yourself all through your ceremony and photographs!
What happens if the weather is bad on my wedding day?
Some of my best photographs have been taken in the rain! Rain and wind don’t necessarily ruin your day, but if the weather is very bad you would need to find an indoor ceremony location. Most hotels would make a room available, although there could be a charge, but you could also do it at your Airbnb or private accommodation. Then later in the day when the weather clears you can go explore Skye for your portrait session.
What local suppliers are available, and can I bring my own suppliers from elsewhere to my wedding on the Isle of Skye?
We have everything you need right here! Using local suppliers helps make your elopement wedding more environmentally friendly, as no one has to travel very far. We have a choice of photographers, celebrants, florists, hair and make up artists, musicians, cake-makers and even vintage car hire. you can also have your rings made on Skye by a local jeweller which makes them even more special. The only things you need to bring is your outfits and yourselves!
Can I bring guests? Where can we stay?
Yes, of course, if you want to bring a few guests that’s totally fine! There are quite a few lovely hotels and guest houses, as well as Airbnb accommodation so guests can choose to suit their price range. Or you could, depending on the size of your group, hire a house with a few bedrooms so you can all stay together. Skye is a popular place though, so accommodation is one of the things you should book early.
What do we need to know about getting married in Scotland?
The marriage rules in Scotland are a little different to England and Wales. In Scotland you can be married wherever you want so that could be in a church, in a hotel, on a beach, up a mountain, out at sea in a boat – basically, wherever you want! As long as the person marrying you is registered with the General Register Scotland then the marriage is legal.
There are different types of celebrant who can marry you depending on your wishes, religious ceremonies by a minister, a non-religious humanist celebrant, or an interfaith celebrant who can conduct a marriage between a couple of any faith, mixed faith or no faith. You also have the option of a civil marriage conducted by a registrar (government official).
In order to get married you have to both submit an ‘M10marriage’ form to the registrar in the district where you want to get married,at least 29 days before you want to have the ceremony. If one or both of you are non-EU citizens, other documents also have to be completed which may take up to three months to process, so do bear this in mind before setting a date!
You must collect your marriage schedule from the registrar before the ceremony and then submit it within three working days of the wedding so that it can be processed and you can receive your legal marriage certificate.
Any other advice?
Don’t assume that because you are not having a big wedding that you can leave booking a celebrant and photographer until the last minute. The Isle of Skye is one of the most popular locations in the world for elopements and is also a busy tourist destination in it’s own right, so celebrants, photographers and accommodation can get booked up well in advance.
If you decide Skye is the wedding location for you, then don’t take too long booking the people you need to make it happen. Then, once you have somewhere to stay, someone to marry you and someone to photograph it, you can then get on with dreaming about how fabulous it is all going to be!
For more advice (and to see more of those dramatic landscapes) head to Lynne Kennedy Photography.