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Our Wedding | The morning of and staying at our airbnb

central glasgow wedding airbnb

The Morning of Our Wedding


That's right guys, I've finally got round to sorting out our wedding photos (from the amazing and beautiful Suzanne Li, but more on her later!) So - I figured that since I found posts like these super helpful and also just fun to read when I was planning my wedding (and even before tbh) I might as well do them for my own blimmin' wedding eh? 

So let's start with the morning of (and night before, really). I'm going to split this into two posts, as the morning was quite a long one, involving two different locations! Let's start with the little flat in Glasgow.

I wanted to have a really chilled out night in with my bridesmaids, near the venue and with lots of space for us all to get ready and have our hair and makeup done in the morning. My decision was pretty clear from the start - I'd need to track down the perfect Airbnb. I actually found the fantastic flat belonging to the amazing Vicky and Paul pretty early on and snapped it up - we actually went for two nights as a couple of my bridesmaids decided to just stay the night of the wedding there as well. It ended up being about £35 each and it really took the stress out of it all having Vicky on the other end of an email - not only did she let us check in early, she also allowed us to check out late (allowing for hangovers, nice) and also they left the sweetest card and bottle of prosecco for me to find when we arrived. What an amazing start!

laurenella wedding the morning of

The night before, I gave my gifts to my bridesmaids (cute matching dressing gowns and a personalised necklace with their initials and the date of the wedding), then we got Nandos takeaway, worked our way through 3 bottles of wine, and played an interesting game of charades! It was the perfect final night as a 'single lady' and I was so happy to have my best girls there with me. 

personalised bridesmaid gift ideas

I feel as though I barely slept the night before - it was like when you're little and it's Christmas Eve and you desperately squeeze your eyes shut hoping to drift off...but you're just too excited! Before I knew it, morning had arrived (and it was an early one - with hair and makeup scheduled to start at 7am!) 

As I floated about in a bit of a daze, my amazing bridesmaids started getting the breakfast on (pancakes all round) and cracked open the first bottle of bubbly ready for toasting with some Bucks Fizz. 

At 6:45 the doorbell rang and that was the cue that it was time to get the first bridesmaid in the beautifying chair (while I laid face down on the sofa desperate for one final snooze).

Wedding Hair and Makeup - The Bridesmaids


All of the wedding hair and makeup was done by the absolutely phenomenal Lesley from Pamper & Polish. I decided I wanted both my hair and makeup done early on, as I didn't want to have to worry about messing up, or my makeup sliding off my face before I even got to the photos. 

When it came to my bridesmaids, I wanted everyone to have their hair done with braids of some kind to tie everything together, although I would have been happy for them to do their own if they'd wanted to!

My sister and Maid of Honour Megan also got her makeup done by Lesley, but the other girls decided to do their own. I didn't have any demands when it came to makeup - I figured that everyone would know best what they'd feel both comfortable and amazing with.

bridesmaids getting ready
bridesmaids doing makeup
bridesmaids the morning of the wedding
bridesmaid hair long with plaits braids

In the end, all of my bridesmaids opted for slightly different variations of the same look - half-up, half-down with curls, and a plait of some kind pinning back some of the hair to hold some of the blooms from the florist.

Makeup wise - neutral tones on the eyes (some smokier than others) plenty of highlighter and some great nude lippy made the cut for everyone. How gorgeous did everyone look?!

Wedding Hair and Makeup - The Bride

By the time I found Lesley, I was starting to worry that none of the hair and makeup artists in my near vicinity would do the kind of style I wanted for a reasonable price. So many of the looks I came across seemed to be very perfect, with hairspray keeping every last stray hair in place. That's not what I wanted - I wanted loose, artfully dishevelled, a bit less formal. 

Luckily, Lesley saved the day. I had already had a hair and makeup trial at her studio a couple of months before to double check that I wouldn't react to anything (essential when you have sensitive skin and eczema like me!) Plus, my hair doesn't tend to hold a curl very well, so Lesley wanted to double check that the style we chose would stay in for a long enough period of time. 

After looking through the stunning images in Lesley's portfolio, I knew I was in safe hands and I kept my request pretty simple - I wanted an up-do but nothing too traditional, a bit of volume, a braid or two and that I'd be able to have flowers worked into it along with my veil. I didn't even show Lesley a photo, she just worked from that to come up with the perfect style. 

Makeup wise, I asked for dramatic smoky eyes with plenty of gold shimmer. Why would I go natural on my wedding day when it's the one time I'm having my makeup done by a professional, please?

laurenella wedding makeup and hair
bride hair curly updo with plaits braids
glasgow wedding hair and makeup

I LOVED my hair and makeup. I honestly can't praise Lesley enough - she was chatty, calm, she kept everything moving on time while still allowing us time to mess about and drink bubbly, and she brought whatever limited vision I had to life. Such a superstar! 

Once we all had our hair and makeup done, Lesley headed off after giving my sister strict instructions as to what to do with the veil when I got dressed. I then jumped into an Uber with my bridesmaids and we headed off to the venue to finish getting ready in a little room they prepared for us downstairs. 

This was for a few reasons - it meant I didn't have to organise a wedding car, which I wasn't bothered about at all, the mums and other close family and friends could pop down for a hello before the ceremony, and it gave me less time to somehow manage to ruin my massive dress before the wedding day even started. 

But more on that next time!

wedding invitation and sapphire engagement ring


  • A Last Minute Stocking Filler Gift Guide


    A MINI CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE


    When did Christmas creep up on us so suddenly? For a while it felt like we had ages to go, but now suddenly it's NEXT WEEK and I'm still scrambling round for last minute bits and pieces, waiting in queues at post offices and trekking to the nearest TK Maxx for the latest Click and Collect I (for some reason) decided on over getting things delivered directly to me...

    It's probably a bit late for me to drop an entire gift guide on you, plus I would have thought that more organised people than me would have done the majority of their shopping already - if you did it in September please don't @ me, you're too on it for me.

    However, we've all had one of those moments where we wrap up all the presents we have and suddenly realise that we forgot our brother's girlfriend or Secret Santa (or your other half conveniently forgets to tell you that you were supposed to be shopping for his family as well...)

    That's what this gift guide is for - I've selected a bunch of little last minute gifts that will be much more gratefully received than a box of chocolates from the nearest petrol station or the very last toiletry set you can get hold of in Boots.

    There's an idea for everyone as well, plus a few other recommendations for something similar. I've also made a little note of any delivery deadlines, for online only purchases. Enjoy!

    Last minute stocking filler ideas for mums, girlfriends, sisters and any other ladies in your life:



    1. For the beauty snob. Looking for something for that somebody you know with a passion for skincare but not quite on board with splashing out fifty quid for the best seller in Space NK? Opt for anything from The Ordinary - the price range will seem almost unbelievable, but there's real science behind the serums. For those of you who don't have time to read through the fine print for each product, Buffet is a surefire winner. Order from Cult Beauty by the 20th for Christmas delivery via courier.

    2. Looking for something similar? I'm a big fan of a sheet mask and this year I've been working through these from TONYMOLY - they'd make for a great extra treat under the tree.

    3. For the organisation lover. You can't go wrong with a beautiful brand new diary, that's a fact. Still, not all diaries were made equal. I've opted for one from my fave stationery brand Busy B for the last two years and the one I've picked for 2018* is my favourite so far. What's great about them is that each diary has a slightly different layout, so you can find one that's perfect for you (whether that's a day-per-page, something family friendly, or something pretty and pocket size). John Lewis sells them all, so pop into store this week and have a browse. 

      Some of us just love jotting things down. If your favourite stationery lover has almost certainly had her diary picked out since the middle of the year, opt for something else for her to scribble in. Maybe this Travel Listography book from Waterstones?

    4. For the coffee addict. Maybe it's your work Secret Santa who heads out on a cappuccino run every morning, or your university friend who has never been able to meet a deadline without a steady stream of black coffee. This pretty little thermos from Amara* is a great gift for those who like to wake up and smell the roast coffee beans and best of all, it comes in a whole heap of designs. It's also on sale right now - plus you can still get pre-Christmas delivery if you order by the 21st.

      If your favourite caffeine fiend happens to have a Nespresso machine like I do, I'd always suggest slipping a box of limited edition capsules into their stocking - you can't go wrong with these festive flavours

    5. For the makeup lover. Lord & Berry is one of my favourite makeup brands and their products are the perfect size (and cost) for slipping into someone's stocking. I'm a long time fan of their lip products, but my current favourites are the new cream blush* and bronzer* range which blend amazingly. There's a good range of shades to choose from too!

      If there's something all beauty gurus can appreciate - it's a pretty set of makeup brushes. If you're not 100% on the right type of makeup to opt for, why not opt for something from the Real Techniques Bold Metals range?

    6. For the snooze queen. Whether it's your first pal to become a Mum who has had to learn to sleep in snippets, or the sister that never emerges from her bedroom until gone midday at the weekend, a luxurious silk eye mask* makes a great little gift. This one from Amara is especially gorgeous - plus it comes with a matching embroidered hot water bottle if you fancy splashing out a little more!

      Need one more tiny treat to add to your list of gifts for this lady? If you know someone who needs a nap, you can't go wrong with this best selling classic - the This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray. Get it from John Lewis now and prepare to be hailed as a lifesaver by your lethargic loved ones.


    7. For the cocktail connoisseur. 2017 has been the year of the bar cart hasn't it? Why head out for a cocktail at £10 per head when you can treat yourself to some beautiful glassware and host a party for your pals at home. One of my faves to keep my own home bar stocked - Edinburgh Gin. From the classic spirit to sweet liquers, John Lewis stocks a fantastic range to choose from.

      You can't make a perfect cocktail without the appropriate glass to serve it in - that's a fact. If you have a pal who likes to be the hostess with the mostest, she's sure to appreciate these eyecatching beauties from Oliver Bonas.

    8. For the arts and crafter. Everyone loves a new hobby right? With mindfulness, self care and hygge all encouraging taking time to yourself away from technology and the stresses of modern life - more and more people are taking up more traditional hobbies. Know someone with a whole shelf of adult colouring books? They're sure to appreciate the fantastic Nib + Ink - a beautiful guide to modern calligraphy. Get it from Amazon in the next couple of days to nab a pre-Christmas delivery.

      My favourite new soothing pastime to indulge in? I love a bit of cross stitch - and these days you can get some really cool little kits. Think that could be a good match for a mate of yours? You can still get kits from The Make Arcade in time for Christmas!
  • Planning a wedding when you struggle with your mental health


    Hello again! A slightly more serious post from me today as part of my #laurenellaweddingmonth series. I've never been particularly secretive on my blog and on social media about the fact that I suffer from pretty severe anxiety and OCD, and I know I spoke to a lot of you earlier on this year on Twitter when my doctor actually prescribed me Sertraline to try and deal with it and I found that it really was helping me quite a lot.

    Let me just start this post by saying that I'm hugely excited to get married. I always knew I wanted a fairly big wedding with all my family and friends around me and I honestly can't wait for the big day. However, it would be disingenuous for me to pretend that actually, being excited about something will just override any of your worries and mental health 'quirks' - it doesn't work that way.

    Planning a wedding with OCD and anxiety


    I've suffered with aspects of my OCD since I was around 6 years old I think, so there's parts of it that are so deeply part of my identity that it's difficult to fully judge what it affects, but I can absolutely pinpoint parts of the wedding planning process where I have based a lot of my decision based on what will bring me the least anxiety.

    Whether that's making sure the ceremony venue is the same as the reception venue (I'm not good travelling in strange cars and even if it's with someone I know it tends to take me up to half an hour to build up to leaving) or just ensuring that my dress isn't too constricting (i get very claustrophobic). I've also absolutely had panic attacks about some of the aspects of the day that I can't do much about like the ceremony (I don't like being in situations where I can't leave if I want to at any moment).

    That's actually part of the reason that I went back to my doctor and decided that I would try being on medication again - I got really sad and stressed that what should be the happiest day of my life was yet again being affected by the parts of my brain that I just can't shut up.

    It doesn't help that people don't seem to really talk about being anything but thrilled and excited by the whole planning process. Please know that you're not alone if you've at any point found everything stressful as hell and completely panic inducing. You're not alone if you've desperately changed the subject when someone asks how you're getting on or even if at times you've honestly just felt completely ambivalent about it all and just wish it would be over.

    Things that I have found helpful


    • Rely on other people. I don't just mean your friends and family either, though they're bound to be complete superstars. I've left a lot of the little decisions completely up to my suppliers - I've got no idea what kind of flowers I'm having beyond the colour scheme and the only thing I picked about our cake was the flavours. When you're dealing with lots of BIG things, it's only going to help you to let go of the SMALL things - especially if you have a tendency towards perfectionism and freak out if you're left to your own devices. 
    • Do whatever you can to feel as comfortable as possible before the big day. I know that I tend to do best in situations when I know exactly where everything is and what's happening. So, I've been over to our venue numerous times and mapped out exactly where all the exits are, where the toilets are, where I'll be at every point in the day. I've made lists and schedules of everything that I might need to do in the morning and then delegated as much as I can to other people. I've booked accommodation close to the venue so I know I don't have to worry about any car journeys longer than ten minutes the whole weekend. Your wedding day is not the day to push yourself as far out of your comfort zone as you've ever been.
    • Speak to your doctor. I'm so beyond happy that I was finally convinced by my doctor to try Sertraline. I'd had some bad experiences with antidepressants before but every single one is different, and it's not in any way a bad thing to admit that you might need a bit of extra help. If you're already taking medication, your doctor might be able to refer you in the direction of some extra support - whether that's online forums or community counselling groups. 
    • Go to the gym. I don't mean some horrible variation of slimming down for the gown - I give precisely no fucks about the fact that I haven't lost half my body weight in the run up to the wedding. All those cliches about exercise helping with your mental wellbeing and the happy endorphins thing though? They're all true - it'll help, trust me.
    • Be a bit selfish. This is your day and you're going to be dealing with enough shit - there's absolutely no need for you to also be catering to the fact that your aunt wants to bring all five of her kids' plus ones, or that your grandparents won't eat anything spicy when you're dreaming of having a taco van in the evening. Problems with the in-laws? Plonk that firmly in the lap of your spouse to be and go and have a bubble bath with a large glass of cold white wine. In the words of a Disney Queen - let. it. go. 
    • Embrace what could go wrong. As a professional catastrophiser, I'm well versed in the art of jumping to the absolute worst conclusion and convincing myself that is what is happening. So, where you can, process some less than ideal scenarios before the day itself so you're not left floundering last minute. Plan for bad weather, get your wedding insurance sorted, give all of your suppliers as many emergency contacts as you can note down. Remember - when shit happens, it gets dealt with - it's the anticipation that's a bloody nightmare.

    Remember.

    No matter what the glossy magazines and American forums tell you, there is no absolute wedding planning process or mindset that you should have. I can tell you with absolutely no fucks given that I cannot wait for the whole planning thing to be over, but that doesn't mean that I'm secretly planning to run away or that my marriage is doomed from the start. All feelings are valid feelings and to be honest, you just need to do what works for you.