Because I grew up in Edinburgh and miss my homeland very much, I wanted to dedicate this blog to Scottish weddings. And who better to write about it than Scotland’s very own foremost wedding planner Alison Tinlin of Plans and Presents? Over to Ali…

Rachel x

Scotland is a country of style, a country of great culture and a country with a great identity.

From Brave Heart to Celebrity Weddings there is a definite pull to our shores. Figures published by the General Register Office for Scotland show that in Scotland marriage is on the rise, with 28,480 marriages in 2010 – 956 more than in 2009.

Scotland has a unique combination of history, tradition and romance, coupled with incredible scenery.  Our countryside is unlike anywhere else with rugged mountains, picturesque lochs, and beautiful heather in bloom making for dramatic landscapes.

So to what makes a Scottish Wedding…. Scottish?

It might be the traditions of which there are many like blackening, creeling, feet washing, the scramble, the Lang reel and the traditional grand march. Many of these have died out but in some communities they are still popular.

It has a lot to do with the Scottish people, we have a history of being one of the most welcoming countries in the world and it’s a fact we hold dear. Scottish weddings place huge importance on the sense of family and the tradition of Auld Lang Syne at the end of a wedding reception makes this even more prevalent with everyone coming together.

Whether that’s the wearing of traditional Highland dress… the Kilt, there is nothing better at a wedding than seeing the laddies in kilts.

When considering wedding rings Celtic knots are very beautiful and a stunning way to display heritage.

The playing of the Bagpipes is great tradition with “Highland Wedding” being very popular. As well as being piped in and out of church or Venue ceremony, being piped into the meal and toasted by the piper with the Quaich is common.

A Ceilidh for your Reception is great fun and a brilliant way to bring two families together, being flung about on the dance floor is a great icebreaker.

There are many ways that heritage can be brought into the wedding day. Thistles are popular as part of a wedding bouquet and table centre pieces and they make a striking statement and tartan linens can be used to give that added Scottish touch.

Celtic knots, the saltire, thistles and tartans are wonderful ideas and extremely popular for incorporating in the cake, bridal dress, and wedding invitations.

Old Celtic traditions have been part of ceremonies for hundreds of years and the origins of Tying the Knot came from the couple ripping their plaids and tying them together around their wrists and this is known as handfasting today.

We are incredibly fortunate as a nation that we can get married just about anywhere.
As well as one of our stunning medieval Scottish castles, auld historic keeps, beautiful country houses, Scotland provides the opportunity to wed on a boat, up a mountain, our back gardens, a handfasting in a forest glade or anywhere else that you can imagine, and you can do this without having to go through the formalities separately before, so personalising your wedding by wearing your tartan with flowers in your hair , getting married up one of those mountains is possible and incredibly romantic.

We welcome you warmly and I would urge anyone to consider marrying in our beautiful country.



  1. I remember scrambles as a child – the money was considered lucky by adults but luckier for us kids as we bought sweets with it!
    Drivers hated it as they were always worried the coins would scratch the car, this probably contributed to it dying out. Shame, as you were always sure of a crowd of well wishers to see the bride off.

  2. I too remember scrambles – great thing. But it wasn’t the scrambles I remember the most, it was how gorgeous and handsome everyone looked dressed in their finest. What I remember more was looking in our local paper to see if there was any weddings coming up so I could go and see them coming out the church.

    I was so wedding mad then and still am

    I run The Big Gay Wedding Directory .com and am so happy to be part of one of the most exciting industries there is today.

  3. I love the fact that I have grown up in Scotland, with Loch Ness at my doorstep and so many beautiful mountains surrounding me. I am very lucky to be getting married in my garden with lovely views, something I understand would not be possible in England, so I am very grateful. We have thought about a hand fasting, we love what it represents! I haven’t seen a scramble in about 20 years, but there are a lot of blackenings still happening… Grooms watch out!! 😉

  4. We had some great scrambles this year from our wedding cars here in the Highlands . Hope this will never die out . We must encourage youngsters to keep those traditions alive even if its is pound coins now instead of pennies Thats inflation for you !


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