Ali Jay Photography
Documentary Wedding Photographer


Guardswell Farm – Hammerschlagen & Giant Jenga at this Fun Scottish Barn Wedding

I love that weddings are all different and this wedding at Guardswell Farm was crazy fun and beautiful.

About Guardswell Farm

One of the newest barn wedding venues in Scotland, Guardswell Farm was still being built when Rory and Hannah booked it. It’s set in the Angus hills, near the village of Kinnaird between Perth and Dundee and includes 150 acres of stunning countryside, 4 nordic eco-cabins, a farmhouse, a farm cottage and the main byre building. This award winning agritecture development was designed by Ben and Rosemary Scrimegour from the Building Workshop. They were asked to retain what was special about the old byre but recycle the building ready for a new purpose and wow, they did it well.

The building comprises of a tall church like room called the Granary, which connects into a large open party space known as the Cattle Court which has another cute little side room off it. Set away from the main party area, there is also a very cute little snug room with sofas and a log burner. The sliding doors perfectly link the Cattle Court onto the large lawn area via a covered outdoor area. There are also firepits in various places and a festoon lit woodland walk and so many beautiful sweet touches that the owner Anna obviously takes great care in providing.

Before the Ceremony

Hannah was in the farmhouse surrounded by her family and friends and Rory was in the cottage down the hill with his friends. With them being so close I could easily go between both places and capture the two groups as they got prepared for the day.

The Granary Room Ceremony

Rory and Hannah are obviously so well loved by their friends and family, so the ceremony room was packed. Although full, the room felt spacious and airy with the stunning vaulted ceilings. Their humanist ceremony included a hand fasting and some beautiful music from their friend. As they finished the service and headed out, they almost ran out the room up a tight alley of their friends wishing congratulations, alike to when you charge up the middle during an Orkadian Strip the Willow.

Fun and Games

When I met Rory and Hannah they told me about all the games they had planned and their wedding didn’t disappoint. They had Hammerschlagen, giant jenga and a game which involved throwing sticks, please comment if you know it’s name? The Hammerschlagen was definitely the favourite and the block of wood was constantly surrounded with people laughing and whacking a hammer trying to hit a nail. I had a little try but I was not a natural Hammerschlagen player. If you fancy trying it yourself, read on for instructions on how to play.

DIY Hammerschlagen

Get a big log of wood, a hammer, nails, a good drink and a load of friends.

How to play?

The object of Hammerschlagen is to be the first person to get you nail flush with the wood surface.

  1. Assign a nail to each player.

  2. The player must rest the end of the hammer on the log next to their nail and then they take turns to have a single swing at their nail.

  3. The player can only use one hand and the hammer must be swung in one continuous motion.

  4. If the player bends their nail and can’t hit it any further into the wood then they can use their turn to try to hit it from the side to attempt to straighten the nail.

Usually at weddings the guests are waiting for their dinner while the speeches are taking place but Rory and Hannah made sure their guests were well fed with beautiful Mezze platters which the guests grazed on while the speeches caused many gasps and hilarity. With a mouth watering grazing table, a bouncy castle and one of the best wedding bands I’ve met the party continued to get more and more fun as the evening went on. The Cattle Court was the perfect party room, it’s sliding doors meant that the party seamlessly included the inside and outside spaces.

I truly loved shooting this wedding at Guardswell Farm, not just because Hannah, Rory and their friends were so fun but because the location was beautiful. Anna, the owner and mastermind behind the development was lovely to work alongside, nothing was too much for her and I I would recommend Guardswell to any couples looking for something really special.

If you love my photography and you’re getting married then please get in touch today and see if I’m free for your wedding or check out my family and newborn shoots :-)

The Wedding Team

Photography: Ali Jay Photography

Band: Bahookie

Caterers: Bespoke Catering

Flowers: Wild Rose Flowers, Kilmacolm

Dress: Grace Loves Lace

Accessories: Britten Weddings

Wedding Venue: Guardswell Farm