Shona McMillan from Paisley was a former waitress at Òran Mór in our Brasserie restaurant whilst studying at the Glasgow School of Art. Shona had moved to Liverpool to start a new life with fiancé Nick, but the couple had decided to marry back in Scotland. So having a former employee coming back to book their wedding was exciting for our team!
The couple took advantage of our sister hotel The Alfred, just along the road where Shona and her bridesmaids got ready the morning of the wedding. Photographer Neil Thomas Douglas did a great job capturing the morning of the wedding in the hotel on Great Western Road.
The couple had their wedding ceremony at the Glasgow University Chapel followed by a reception back in our Auditorium. On meeting Shona and Nick along with Nick’s parents, at their menu tasting in November the couple educated me on Shona’s Korean background and how they planned to have a Korean ceremony in the Auditorium before dinner service.
The morning of the wedding Shona’s mum visited the venue to drop off and set up for the Korean ceremony which included two wooden geese which are a symbol of harmony and structure, dates and chestnuts, white cloth and a small table. I later learned that wild geese mate for life, so in giving the geese to Shona’s mother, Nick is promising a life of love and care for Shona to his new mother in law.
Photographer Neil Thomas Douglas walked the couple along Byres Road and the side streets for some unique city wedding pictures.
On arriving at the venue Shona changed in to her traditional Korean dress which is made of a lightweight material with bright colours, and has no pockets. Shona’s mother lead the ceremony as guests at the drink reception watched on. The couple held each side of a white cloth which was topped with dates and chestnuts representing fertility, and as the end of the ceremony the dates and chestnuts were flung at Shona as she attempted to catch them in her large skirt.
After dinner the couple cut their wedding cake which was made by Nick’s mother and transported all the way from Liverpool the day before the wedding. Shona and Nick then took to the dancefloor for their first dance followed by entertainment from The Little Red Wedding Band.
On the day of the wedding I recognised quite a few faces and asked Shona how I might have recognised them. It turned out that Shona in fact grew up a couple of streets along from me in Paisley and a lot of her wedding guests were from around the same area – such a small world. After the wedding Shona emailed thanking myself and the team for all of the hard work we put in for her and Nick’s wedding day and finished the email telling me that at 2am it was just herself, Nick and the Paisley crew left dancing on the stage and the last ones to leave the venue – which does not surprise me!
Thank you to Shona and Nick for allowing me to share your wedding story and for bringing our first ever Korean ceremony to our venue!
Shona & Nick 17/03/18
Photographer: Neil Thomas Douglas
Ceremony: University of Glasgow Chapel
Band: Little Red Wedding Band
Flowers: Meadow Isle Studio