Stormy weather

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing”

5 top tips for outdoor winter weddings, by Annie Loughlin, wedding celebrant, Humanist Society Scotland

One of the many things I’ve learned in the 15 years I’ve been a Humanist wedding celebrant in Scotland’s west coast of beautiful wild Argyll, is BE PREPARED for all weathers, often all on the same day, especially at wee outdoor winter weddings!


I once arrived at a wedding on a tractor, having been stuck in 3 meter snow drifts! Luckily I was wearing my thermals and furry boots!

On another adventure trying to get to an wee outdoor winter wedding, I had to do a cross country hike as the road was temporarily shut due to an accident. In torrential rain I walked for 45 minutes through bogs and woodland, waded through a stream, clambered up an embankment, crossed a railway line and at last arrive back at the main road just past the road block, where I was picked up by the groom’s dad, who whisked me to meet the bride and groom.

I somehow I managed to hide the fact that I was caked in mud, soaked to the skin and my boots made squelching noises as I walked! But again my thermals stood me in good stead! Ah the joys of being a wedding celebrant …. and I still wouldn’t do any other job!

In fact truth be told, wee outdoor elopement weddings really are my favourite type, as the event is stripped right back to what it’s really all about; LOVE!

It is such a joy to help couples have the wedding of their dreams, in amongst the elements, on Scotland’s stunning west coast, whether it’s on a beach, up a hill, in the woods, by a waterfall, rain or shine, anytime of the day, week, month or year! Imagine the wind in your hair, holding hands with the love of your life, in the wide majesty of nature, feeling part of something bigger than yourselves.


Whatever the weather, nature can always deliver! Spring offers daffodils and bluebells, and Summer has bright blue skies and warm sunny days, while Autumn and Winter need slightly more planning, but cool crispy autumn afternoons and wild stormy winter days bring their own beauty and meaning, with twinkly fairy lights and a cosy fire to welcome you back indoors afterwards.
There are so many wonderful ways to celebrate your love and you get to choose when to want to get married ….. any season, any time you like!

So as it’s February and still pretty wintry here in Scotland, here are my TOP 5 TIPS of how to be prepared for your wee outdoor winter wedding, amongst wonderfully wild weather!

1. Waterproof footwear.

Whilst you may really adore your white satin stilettos, to get to the beach, woods or wherever you have chosen to have your wedding, wear waterproof boots or wellies. (You can slip into your wedding shoes later for photos).
AND invest in some 100% pure wool socks. I can assure you they are worth every penny and you won’t regret it when you have cosy toes all day!

2. Windproof umbrellas.

I’ve lost count of the number of brand new brollies that flip inside out at the first gust of wind and then go straight in the bin, ending up in landfill.
Windproof ones may cost a wee bit more, but can withstand a strong wind. They come in a range of colours and there are also clear see-through ones, which are good for photos.

You can cuddle up and stay nice and dry in a big brolly bubble and enjoy every second of your ceremony, instead of trying to ignore each and every drip down your neck! I don’t know about you, but if my head is dry, I feel dry, even if the rest of me is soaking!
And of course under a brolly, hair and make up stand a better chance of remaining the way you want!

3. Waterproofs.


There are some lovely capes, coats and outer waterproof layers available and even if you don’t want to wear it during your wedding ceremony, then have it nearby, so that afterwards you can pop it on and get warm. (Goretex or similar windproof, waterproof, breathable coats are well worth the price tag!)

4. Layers.

I cannot recommend silk thermals more highly; they are so light and as warm as wool. And fingerless gloves, a silk scarf, a fine pure wool wrap, shawl or pashmina all keep you cosy. (And don’t forget a hat for after the photos!)

5. USB hand heaters.

These are my secret weapon! Simply plug into your car cigarette lighter to charge and you can then keep it in a pocket or bag, available if necessary. e.g. I use HotRox.

So whatever the weather, with a little preparation, you can stay warm and dry during your beautiful wee elopement winter wedding ceremony in the great wild outdoors and enjoy every precious minute of it!