Stephen & Colin’s romantic, away-from-the-world vow renewal in Greece
It’s not often I cry at a wedding on my screen – but today, Stephen and Colin got me. Their love story is so romantic, and to hear how their little family has grown since their first (big) wedding and their 10 year vow renewal… well, I cried!! Perhaps it was ‘Big Dad’ and ‘Short Dad’ – perhaps the rescue dog tale… perhaps the overwhelming romance of the setting and how beautiful their vow renewal was.
Big thanks to lovely Claire at Lefkas Weddings for telling me about their day, to the gorgeous happy couple for such a lovely interview, and to Maxeen Kim Photography for sharing her stunning images with us. I would LOVE to see LOTS more submissions of men marrying men, and women marrying women on the blog – PLEASE do get in touch if you’d like to share your day with us! Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!
Our first wedding was quite a big affair at a manor house in Essex, UK, so this time we wanted it to be just about Colin, the kids and I. In contrast to that, we chose to do something outside the UK for our vow renewal and it was in a stunning location set above the clouds in Lefkada island, Greece. It was really intimate with a small number of guests and absolutely perfect. We wouldn’t change a single thing. The first time Colin proposed to me was in front of all of our friends and family a few days before my 21st birthday. We travelled to London in a limousine to see a show in the West End and had an amazing meal in an Italian restaurant where he popped the question. The second time was my turn and I proposed to Colin in 2018 on the evening of our tenth wedding anniversary. I hired a room in our favourite restaurant and gave him a photo album I had made with all our memories over the years, ending with a picture of our two children holding a sign saying ‘Big Dad, will you marry short Dad again?’ Early days were just Colin and I and our two dogs. Our family has continued to grow with two children and one more dog. (Our new dog was a rescue dog we adopted and brought home with us from the vow renewal holiday in Lefkada, the perfect anniversary gift!)
Tell us about your venue – what made this place special for you?
We chose Lefkada for the vow renewal as the island holds a special place in our hearts. We have so many happy memories there. We exchanged on our first home whilst in Lefkada, we got the news we had been approved to adopt whilst in Lefkada. It seemed the perfect location to add another milestone memory to our lives. On top of that, the local people are lovely and we have always felt comfortable being a same-sex couple on the island
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How did you choose your photographer?
We were led by our planner Claire, who works exclusively in that area. Her knowledge was amazing and took the stress out of the planning.
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Our photographer Maxeen, was INCREDIBLE!
Did you love wearing your outfits? How was the dress / suit shopping experience?
We both chose tailored shorts and blazers in different shade of blue.
Did you hire a florist? Tell us about any floral amazingness
We were quite relaxed with the theme and honestly, the view and sunset is so stunning at Fly Me, we let that speak for itself just requesting lots of candles! The rest of the styling at the ceremony and villa was all down to our amazing wedding planner and photographer, the girls styled it brilliantly for us, the ceremony and our dinner table was full of candles mixed with blue glass and gold details and a few white flowers!
Did you hire a wedding planner?
We chose a location (Lefkada) we loved and knew well which removed any challenges such as not having seen the venue in person etc. Claire was incredible and dealt with everything.
Tell us about any special personal touches, or creative projects you made yourselves
We had a glass bottle made for us for the sand ritual part of the ceremony. We brought some sand from the beach near our home in the UK and mixed it with sand from our favourite beach in Lefkada!
Did you personalise your vows or have any wedding readings? What were they?
We wanted it to feel very relaxed and informal with involvement from our two children, so Claire suggested adding a sand ritual ceremony and all four of us took a turn which was great! As well as the renewal of our vows we asked to include a joint promise to our children and one of our friends gave a reading. For the ceremony wording, she asked us questions about our relationship from the start to where were are now ten years on and tailored the ceremony to a special story of us.
What was your first dance song? Why did you choose it?
As this was our vow renewal we chose a special song for the ceremony. Simply the Best (From “Schitt’s Creek”) by Noah Reid
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