Planning & Legal Tips; A Scottish Wedding

Written by Emma Hla

Today’s feature doesn’t really need to much of an intro…

Not only are we exploring the most incredible destination wedding location, but it’s jam-packed with planning & legal tips for your Scottish wedding.

Thank you so much to the team at Crear for quite frankly a wonderful top tips piece for anyone considering a wedding in Scotland.


Notes from Crear


For some people, Scotland might not be on their radar for a destination wedding. But as someone fortunate enough to have been married here, I want to share with you the tremendous potential it holds for all you budding Bride & Grooms.

Originally from England, I made the pilgrimage to Scotland some seven years ago. On a total whim, I moved up to stay with a friend, and never returned. I believe this fact alone, to be a great testament to this magnificent place, but of course you need more information than that.

So what is it we love about Scotland, and in turn, getting married here..? Firstly, in my humble opinion, the incredible scenery gives any other top wedding destination, a run for its money. Wherever I go in the world, Scotland remains my favourite country of all time!

It doesn’t matter which direction you choose to explore, each area offers it’s own unique characteristics, and individual charm. Whether you’re inspired by lush green landscapes & ethereal forests, ancient architecture, towering rugged mountains, glistening lochs, or beautiful golden coastline, Scotland has it all, in spades. Who wouldn’t want such an amazing backdrop for their special day..?

For me, and many of our couples at Crear, the most important ingredients for the best weddings are love, location, and a good feed. Not only does Scotland have treasures for the eye, it also has some of the finest produce from land and sea, for your taste buds. With the added bonus of one of its largest, and often most popular exports – whisky! All of which make for a pretty special wedding. Although maybe go a wee bit easy on the whisky. We don’t want Grandma causing a scene on the dance floor after all…or do we..?

It’s not only about stimulating your senses. Another incredibly appealing thing about Scotland is the low cost of living. My quality of life here, in comparison to the South of England, is hugely improved, and for a fraction of the cost. This is not just a benefit for those that live here, because this huge difference in ‘bang for your buck’ transfers over to the wonderful world of weddings!

For example, Crear, set in 200 acres of beautiful private land, with uninterrupted views to the Isles of Islay, Jura & Gigha, offers exclusive use of its stylish, warm and inviting venue, for four days and three nights. All at a lower cost than many of the standard, one day hire venues, across the UK.

The main Crear studio offers a large, beautifully understated space, in which to create your own vision. With solid oak flooring, high ceilings, white beams, and plain white walls. It really is the perfect blank canvas to play with. To the back of the room a sheer glass wall allows the outside in, so no matter where you get married, indoors or out, you will always be able to enjoy the stunning views. Crear cottage, an elegant, yet cozy space, is part of the venue hire. It offers squashy sofas in the living room, an open fire, crisp white linen sheets on really comfy beds, accommodation for twelve people, and a very special team looking after you.

Being married in such absolutely breath-taking scenery, in a land so rich in history and culture, should cost the earth, but the beauty is, in Scotland, it doesn’t have to.

There are many other special treasures in this magical land. In my eyes, the Scots themselves, are the crowning glory. Not only is their sense of humour totally unbeatable, it’s the warm, open minded, and liberal nature of so many of its people, which has shaped several forward thinking differences in the marriage laws here.

The legal bits

Scotland is the only country in the UK, and one of only seven countries in the world, which legally recognises Humanist weddings. With a ceremony of this nature, you have the opportunity to create the entire service yourselves, ensuring the focus is on nothing but you as a couple, your love, and your uniqueness. This option also enables you to get married in any location you desire, indoors, or out, without the added hassle of having to go through a legal service at a local registry office.

If that’s not your bag, and you would like something more traditional, or religious, it is good to be aware that The Church of Scotland is happy to marry couples outside, welcomes divorcées, and also couples from other churches.

Another difference is that unlike England and Wales, local registrars for Civil Ceremonies, are happy for you to really personalise your service, and are willing to marry you outdoors, in any area of your choice.

For couples wishing to marry here, you do not have to be a resident of Scotland. Therefore citizens of any country can marry in any district they choose, provided there is no legal impediment to the marriage.

Right, so after all my waffling, lets get to the juicy bits. There are so many things to take in to account when planning your special day, so to help you out, we have compiled a list of helpful hints and tips for your Crear wedding, and planning in general!

Planning a scottish destination wedding
  • Budget: Really think about your budget options. What’s important to you, and where and how will your money be allocated. At Crear we believe it is perfectly possible to host a fabulous party that will not break the bank. We offer lots of helpful suggestions to give you & your guests the best wedding experience possible without going over your budget.
  • Legal Paperwork: All weddings in Scotland require some legal paperwork. You must post (not email) the completed forms to arrive 10 – 12 weeks before the date of the proposed marriage and certainly no later than 29 days before. For Crear couples this is processed by our local Registration office in Lochgilphead – more info here.
  • Joining us from abroad: A marriage visa is not required to give notice of marriage, however it may be required to enter the UK. If you’re joining us from abroad, contact the UK Border Agency (Tel: 0870 606 7766) – for advice about entry requirements to the UK under the Immigration Rules for marriage.
  • Venue: Next on the list, book Crear as your venue (nudge, nudge, wink, wink). Seriously though, make sure your venue is available on the dates you had in mind. For those on a budget, please be aware that at Crear, prices reduce considerably out of summer season.
  • Wedding Ceremony: Whether you have chosen a Humanist, Civil, or religious ceremony, make sure you contact your choice of marriage celebrant directly to discuss your wedding plans and confirm your wedding dates in their diary.
  • Guest list: This can often be a real headache for some people. In terms of Crear, depending on the size of the wedding, you will have 4 days and 3 nights to spend with those you invite, so choose wisely. We understand that the pressure from family to invite them can become intense, but it’s important that you always remain smelling of roses during the diplomatic minefield of who gets an invite. Fear not we have some great suggestions to manage everyone’s expectations, attempt to keep everyone happy and host the wedding you want.
  • All the fun bits: Once you have the nitty gritty essentials sorted, you can start to look at all the yummy details. Food, photography, décor, flowers, and all the other dreamy bits in-between. Crear offers the absolute cream of the crop in many of those areas, but for the bits we don’t cover, we have some amazing suppliers. We always ensure that the people we suggest offer something we would choose for ourselves, and our list is constantly updated based on their quality and our experience.
  • Inspiration: There are so many amazing places to gain inspiration these days. With a myriad of blogs, and of course the wonderful Pinterest, it has never been easier to plan. Crear has a Pinterest page for all our couples, which we regularly update with beautiful unique ideas, and creative inspiration. Also, we will soon be launching our very own Crear Blog, which will not only highlight our lovely couples, but also interesting articles, unusual features, and ideas for couples.
  • Relax & Enjoy: Have fun with your planning, remember what is important, and take a breath. Crear Weddings are renowned for their laid back and easy-going vibe. Wedding guests have travelled from every corner of the globe – all have claimed it was worth the trip when they reach this magical place. A welcoming and relaxed atmosphere at your wedding is key to everyone having the best possible time.

You can view Crear in all it’s glory by heading over to our directory, alternatively if the above has captured your heart and imagination you can contact the team directly on

Lots of love…

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