Samantha & Michael Kheirabi
Photography – Crieff Photography
How did you meet, who proposed and how did they do it?
We met as students in Dundee and lived there together for four years. When I finished my master’s degree, we decided to take the leap and move to Australia. We travelled along the South-East coast for a while, before settling in Sydney.
In 2014, we went on a mini break to the Hunter Valley in New South Wales where Michael proposed – he tricked me by pretending there was a kangaroo right behind me, when I turned back to him to ask what he was on about, he was down on one knee. We’d talked about getting engaged for a long time and I picked out the ring, so it wasn’t exactly a surprise proposal, but I was overwhelmed all the same.
What would be your one key piece of advice bride to bride & groom to groom?
Be in the moment. Don’t think about the next event of the day. Kathryn and her team have got everything running seamlessly, and will do anything to have it exactly as you want it. All you need to worry about is having the best day of your life, with the people you love the most, in the moments that matter.
Where did you get your dress?
I knew I wanted to buy my dress in Scotland and have my mum and gran there when I chose it. We went to a lovely bridal boutique in Broughty Ferry.
I must have tried on 10 dresses in the style of what was plastered over my Pinterest board, but none of them suited me – I didn’t feel or look like myself. Then the shop owner brought over an Enzoani dress that had everything I said I didn’t want, but I thought I would try it on anyway. She told me to close my eyes and only open them when it was laced up. It was love at first sight.
How did you know that Samantha/Michael was ‘The One’?
Samantha – I can’t remember a point where I thought Michael was ‘The One’. That sounds really bad, but we work so well together as a couple, it was a decision I didn’t even have to think about or question. We have a relationship where we can talk about anything together; we have the same goals and dreams, we plan our next steps in life together and we know that the other is there to support anything we want to do. I said in my vows that I love him wholly and completely, as my partner in life, and I truly do.
Michael – Samantha and I had been partners in crime for over nine years before we got married. There is so much rich history and experience in those years. We both share a love of travel and each trip we took strengthened our relationship and convictions in our partnership. I know Samantha is the one because together with her we have built a life filled with joy and companionship.
What was your favourite part of the day?
We honestly can’t pick a favourite part of the whole day. We talk about it often, trying to chose a moment that stands out more than the rest, but there isn’t one. The whole day was filled with moments of love, laughter and pride.
It’s impossible to choose between the big events of the day, like saying our own vows to each other or having Michael’s best friend marry us; and the little moments like watching the morning fog lift from the bridal suite with my closest friends, or the final dance with those left standing. We would do it again in a heartbeat – exactly how it was.
What song did you choose for your first dance?
Candy by Paolo Nutini. It meant something special to us as it was a song we had on repeat while travelling in Peru. We originally planned to have it played from the band’s system on MP3, but Splendid Gentlemen were amazing and told us they could play it live. It added something special to have them play it. We were nervous about having all eyes on us for such a long song so asked the bridal party up after the chorus. By the end of the song, everyone was on the dance floor.
What was the most romantic thing about the day?
Aside from getting married (obviously), having a few moments to ourselves as we walked around the gardens was one of the most romantic moments. We were able to catch up with each other about the morning and take a breath away from everyone else.
What was the most memorable part of the day?
Samantha – The moment before entering the ceremony room when everyone inside was quiet and waiting. I had been so calm and collected until that point, when I realised that everyone I love on this side of the world was in there, and the three year wait to walk with my dad down the aisle to marry Michael was almost over.
Michael – We try to visit home as often as we can and we miss everyone a great deal when we are away, so to have all our friends and family in one place for a whole weekend was very special.
What made you choose Crieff Hydro?
Crieff holds an important place for us and was one of the first locations we looked at, and we booked it straight away. Not purely because of the stunning venue, but the fact everyone made us feel so welcome and like nothing was impossible.
How easy were the planning stages with you being in the land down under?
Planning and coordinating the events of the day, for three and a half years, from half way around the world was a huge task! We must have emailed Kathryn at least one hundred times to make up for the lack of proximity. When we finally met her and Gary a week before the wedding, we couldn’t have been more at ease with them taking control of the parts we didn’t have a clue about. But the professionalism and wee touches from all of the staff at The Hydro throughout the weekend was what really struck us, it was a wonderful experience that we’ll never forget.