A LOCAL FOCUS FOR THE LOCAL BRIDE

How to be a 'zen' bride

The lead up to the big day can be a hectic few weeks for a bride-to-be. With only a week to go until you say "I do", it's time to relax, let all the planning fall into place and totally de-stress before the big day. Here are some ways to switch off and soak up your last few pre- marriage days. Stay stress free with these three: 
 
A weekend away 
After all the madness with engagement and hen and stag parties done and dusted, take some time to wind down. Head away for a night the weekend before your wedding with your other half to catch up with them and try to keep any wedding talk to minimum. It's important to enjoy your last few days before becoming husband and wife and give you time to soak up this new exciting adventure you're taking together.  
 
Take some 'me' time 
Taking time for yourself is always a necessity every now and then, so making sure to give yourself some head space in the lead up to your wedding day is super important. Do something you enjoy or something you used to do but became too busy lately to do it. Go to a yoga class, treat yourself to a facial or even binge watch your favourite TV show with some goodies. This will keep any pre-wedding jitters at bay and allow you to get back into the groove after taking a day off for you.  
 
Technology detox 
We are all guilty of spending too much time on our phones but putting it away for an hour or two a day can be great for clearing the mind. Mute your emails, stop scrolling through the Instagram feed and catch up on your favourite Snapchatters later. Swap your social media time for a coffee with a friend or a visit home to your family to chat about the wedding and your last few days of being a fiance. This will keep you buzzing about the next few days with people that are close to you and avoid any unnecessary time spent on social media.  
 
 

Bridal makeup guide with Claire Treacy Make Up Artist

Hi Claire, tell us a bit about yourself and what you do: I am a qualified beautician and makeup artist from Limerick. I qualified six years ago and worked in a 5* spa for three years doing makeup for all the weddings there along with other beauty treatments. I then decided I wanted more experience on a makeup counter, I was lucky enough to get a job with one of my favourite brands (Urban Decay) and worked there for two years. Then I made the big move and opened my own makeup studio and it’s the best thing I have ever done.  

What advice would you give brides when choosing the type of makeup they’ll wear on their wedding day?
Do what makes you comfortable. If on a daily basis you don’t wear a lot of makeup, keep it simple. If you love wearing makeup then go for it, the more glitter the better. Just make sure you are 100% happy. You will be looking back on pictures for years to come.  

How soon before the wedding day should a bride trial her makeup with you?
I think three months is plenty, you don’t want it too early as styles change all the time but you don’t want to leave it too late either in case you aren’t happy.  

What trends are you seeing for bridal makeup for the winter months?
I think brides are definitely going bolder with their makeup. And I love that. But the most popular trend for a winter wedding is a red or burgundy lip.  

What are the essentials a bride should keep on stand- by on her wedding day?
The lipstick that the makeup artist used on her. Make sure to find out the name so you can buy it for the day. A setting powder in case of shine. It is a long day/night and a mini setting spray to cool you down and bring your makeup back to life too.  

What’s your favourite thing about doing bridal makeup?
Seeing the family’s reaction when the bride is done. It’s always so nice. And when you have a fun bridal party you leave smiling and excited for them.        

Quick fire round: Favourite long lasting foundation: Oily skin urban decay all Nighter. For dry skin Urban Decay naked skin
 Favourite bridal lip colour: nude or burgundy  
Favourite bridal lash type: Individuals because you can tailor them
 Favourite highlighter: Laura Geller Gilded Honey 



Brides of Limerick Wedding Industry Awards 2017

On Sunday, October 22, 2017, Drew Media and the Brides of Limerick Team welcomed 300 guests to Bunratty Castle Hotel to celebrate the third annual Brides of Limerick Awards and to pay homage to Limerick’s prestigious wedding industry. Our amazing MC Catriona Tierney and founding publisher April Drew presented each winner with their well- deserved award on stage. The staff and management at Bunratty Castle Hotel, particularly David Shelley did an amazing job in making sure that the venue itself looked amazing beyond words, in conjunction with the impeccable food and service throughout the evening.

A huge congratulations in particular to our lifetime achievement awards winners Rita and Stephen Ryan, owners of Ryan’s Jewellers, who have grown their business from the ground up and have since passed it on to their children to become one of the most popular wedding jewellery businesses in Limerick. 
The family business also took home the award for Wedding Jewellers Specialist of the Year. The night was a huge success for all involved and the Brides of Limerick Team are already looking forward to what’s in store for next year’s awards. 


Check out all the winners below.  

Wedding Transport 2017 
Irish Diamond Limousines 
Wedding Celebrant 2017 Spiritual Ceremonies 
Wedding Planner 2017 Co-Ordination Made Easy
 Wedding Band 2017 Escapade 
Runner Up Wedding Ceremony Musician 2017 Eve Stafford 
Wedding Ceremony Musician 2017 Kerry Jane Hurley 
Wedding DJ 2017 Paudie Walsh- The DJ 
Video DJ 2017 DJ Jonathan
Wedding Styling Company 2017 Kitture Weddings 
Wedding Entertainment 2017 Photobooth 365 
Wedding Alteration Supplier 2017- The Zip Yard 
Wedding Mobile Beauty Service 2017 Beauty Brought 2 You 

Wedding Spa 2017 
Revas Spa- Woodlands 
Alternative Wedding Venue 2017-  AnnaCarriga 
Outdoor Space 2017 Aherlow House Hotel 
Runner Up Urban Wedding Venue 2017- The Greenhills Hotel 
Urban Wedding Venue 2017 Limerick Strand Hotel 
Most Luxurious Wedding Venue 2017 Radisson Blu Hotel
 Most Picturesque Wedding Venue 2017 The Inn at Dromoland   

Wedding Cake Designer 2017
 Cakes by Deborah 
Wedding Invitation Designer 2017 McNamara Printers 
Runner Up Beauty Salon 2017 The Nail Sanctuary 
Beauty Salon 2017 Catwalk Hair and Beauty 
Wedding Hair and Beauty Salon 2017 Park Avenue Hair and Make Up 
Runner Up Hair Salon 2017 Guys and Dolls 
Wedding Hair Salon 2017 Obsessed Hair Salon 
Wedding Hair Stylist 2017 Hair by Val O’Dea 
Wedding Make Up Artist 2017 Catherine Hickey 
Most Stylish Wedding Venue 2017 The Absolute Hotel 
Most Romantic Wedding Venue 2017 The Falls Hotel 
Boutique Wedding Venue 2017 The Killaloe Hotel 
Waterside Wedding Venue 2017 The Lakeside Hotel 
Best Customer Experience 2017 Treacy’s West County Hotel   

Wedding Jeweller Specialist 2017
 Ryan’s Jewellers 
Wedding Videographer 2017 PVP Digital 
Honeymoon Specialist 2017 Limerick Travel 
Wedding Florist 2017 Ring O’Roses 
Wedding Florist 2017 Lawless Flowers 
Wedding Suit Supplier 2017 Esquire Formal Menswear 
Flowergirl Dress Supplier 2017 Marettes
 Mother of the Bride Specialist 2017 Sinead’s Boutique
Bridesmaid Dress Supplier 2017 Chantilly Lace 
Wedding Dress Designer 2017 The Attic Bridalwear Boutique 
Wedding Dress Supplier 2017 Virginia’s Bridal 
Newcomer Photographer 2017 Weddings by Diarmuid 
Bespoke Photographer 2017 The Tilted Tripod
Runner Up Photographer 2017 Tony Clancy Photography 
Wedding Photographer 2017 Baker Photography


Wedding Co-ordinator 2017
 Stacey O’Callaghan- Radisson Blu 
Wedding Co-ordinator 2017 Nicola Fagan – Castletroy Park 
Sales and Event’s Manager 2017- Catherine Lewis - Lakeside Hotel 
Best Wedding Ballroom 2017 Treacy’s Oak Wood Hotel 
Best Bridal Suite 2017 The Inn at Dromoland
 Country House Hotel 2017 Castle Oaks House Hotel 
Best Family Run Wedding Venue 2017 Hotel Woodstock  
Wedding Specialist Supplier 2017 Sunshine Candy Cart/The Snug Photobooth 
Boutique Wedding Service 2017 SES Digital 
Best Wedding Team 2017 Wedding Heaven  

5 Star Award 2017 
Floralia 
5 Star Award 2017 The Little White Dress Bridal Salon 
5 Star Award 2017 The Chic Cake Boutique 
5 Star Award 2017 La Bella Beauty
5 Star Award 2017 Matthew Stephen’s Jewellers  
5 Star Award 2017 Black Diamond Photography  

Runner up Hotel Manager 2017 
Ray Lynch- Abbey Court Hotel
Outstanding Hotel Manager 2017 David Shelly – Bunratty Castle Hotel
Most Romantic Engagement Story Sinéad Powell & Noel Houlihan 
Same Sex Wedding of the Year Samantha Cummins & Karen Byrne October 21, 2016
Wedding Story of the Year Orlaith Mc Grath & David O’Doherty June 11, 2016 
Bride of the Year Yvonne Carey (married to Patrick O’Neill) October 22, 2016
Wedding of the Year 2017 Orlaith Carroll & Barry Murphy May 5, 2016 
Wedding Venue 2017- Co Cork Charleville Park Hotel
Wedding Venue 2017- Co Tipperary Great National Abbey Court Hotel 
Wedding Venue 2017- Co Clare Bunratty Castle Hotel 
Wedding Venue 2017- Co Limerick Castletroy Park Hotel 
Overall Wedding Venue of the Year 2017 Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel
 
Outstanding Contribution Award 2017- Orla O’Neill
Newcomer Business 2017 Ivy Rose Wedding Décor 
Wedding Personalities 2017 Sean and Elaine Lally 
Most Established Business 2017 Noels Menswear
Business Woman 2017 Kate Downes Griffin 
Business Man 2017 Declan Gleeson 
Overall Wedding Supplier 2017 The Bridal Emporium
 Editor’s Choice Award 2017 Celina’s Cakes 
Lifetime Achievement Award 2017 Stephen and Rita Ryan - Ryan’s Jewellers

A day of romance and love for Marion and William at the Charleville Park Hotel

Photos courtesy of Horsfall Photography 
June 23, 2017 - St. Nicholas Church & Charleville Park Hotel 
 
Loves young dream is an age old saying and one that was brought to life by Marion Maher and William Hennessy. The newlyweds met at a friend’s 21st and have remained by each other’s side ever since. In November 2014, William surprised Marion with a spur of the moment trip to Galway City for a romantic weekend away for the opening of the Christmas markets. After an enchanting evening browsing the stalls, William popped the question to a very surprised Marion. “It blew me away as it was something neither of us had really spoken about before but I instantly said yes. It took a few days for it all to sink in,” the bride recalls.  
Selecting the perfect venue was high on the wedding planning to do list and after securing their dream reception venue at the Charleville Park Hotel and a ceremony at St. Nicholas Church, a wedding date was set for June 23, 2017.  

Joining the stunning bride at the alter were bridesmaids Diane Maher, Fiona Maher and Nora Cunningham and flower girls Orla Maher and Grainne O’Brien. The girls enjoyed a glam morning with the help of Siobhan and Joanne from Luxe Nenagh. "The two ladies are a credit to the industry of beauty. There are such professionals. The offered lots of tips and tricks to us on the day and made us all feel so relaxed," the bride said.  
The handsome groom was joined by Edmond Hennessy, Daniel Barrett and Pat Mc Sweeney and page boy Fionn O Brien.  

MEMORABLE MOMENTS 
 “William, who is not usually an emotional guy, was in floods of tears at the altar and it was at that point it all became real for both of us. We also can’t forget Williams nephews who were our altar servers for our mass. Padraic rang the bell so hard it nearly took the roof of the church but it remains one of the great memories of the day. My dad also organised a vintage bike which belonged to his mother to be at the church with flowers. The bike had huge sentimental value to dad and meant we were emotional when we arrived at the church,” Marion recalls.  
 
HOW WAS YOUR EXPEREINCE WITH THE CHARLEVILLE PARK HOTEL? 
We simply can’t say enough about Barbara and Sheila from Charleville Park Hotel. As a young couple we had lots of ideas that we wanted for our wedding and they brought all that through on the day. The ladies are gifted at what they do and it shows in all the special detail they provide. Our guests have given us such positive feedback post wedding and this really melted our hearts. The night porter was more than accommodating for our late-night guests and this was so nice to hear. We brought lots of additional props to the hotel and the staff were so happy to accommodate us with these. Booking the Charleville Park was a no brainer for us. We just wish we could do it all again. 

Four kids & four words leads to the perfect proposal

Stacey Madigan & Patrick McSweeney 
August 16, 2017, Our Lady of Lourdes & Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel 
Photos courtesy of Tony Clancy Photography 
 
Stacey Madigan met Patrick McSweeney when they were just kids and as the years passed their childhood friendship turned into teenage romance. The sweethearts grew up to have four of their own children together. When the time was right to make Stacey his wife, Patrick decided to include the little ones into his proposal idea. Patrick bought four different t-shirts, each with one word of that all-important question- ‘Will you marry me?’ and lined the kids up to surprise their mom. Stacey was blown away when she saw her children and immediately agreed to marry their dad.  
A wedding date was set for August 16, 2017 with a ceremony at Our Lady of Lourdes followed by a stunning reception at the Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel. The blushing bride celebrated her wedding day alongside her bridesmaids, including Michelle O’Callaghan, Mary McSweeney, Shannon Madigan, Nicole McMahon and flower girls Amelia Kerley, Kelsey and Hollie and Roisin McSweeney. The grooms gang was made up of Ryan McSweeney, Dan Hinchy, Tony Ryan and Niall O’Brien.  
 
BRIDES OF LIMERICK TEAM 
VENUE Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel  
DRESS The Bridal Emporium 
SHOES The Bridal Emporium 
PHOTOGRAPHER Tony Clancy 


HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH TONY CLANCY PHOTOGRAPHY? 
Tony is such a nice person and so easy to deal with. On the day he made sure we were comfortable and happy with everything. We can’t thank him enough for everything he done for us. He went above and beyond with Patrick’s father on the day as he is unwell and he made sure we all got plenty of photos together. 
www.clancyphotography.ie 
 
HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE AT THE FITZGERALD’S WOODLANDS HOUSE HOTEL? 
We worked with David at the Woodlands from the start. He was a pleasure to deal with and he made sure everything was perfect on the day. The food is out of this world, family and friends are still talking about it.   
www.woodlands-hotel.ie 
 
 

Hilary’s musical talents swooned a young bouncer a decade ago

Hilary Orpen & Stephen Ryan 
January 13, 2017- The Wells Church, Loughrae Hotel and Spa, Galway 
Photos courtesy of Gary Collins Photography 

Hilary Orpen met Stephen Ryan, or fondly known as Ryano, while working in a nightclub in Shannon. Ryano, a bouncer at the time was taken with Hilary who performed at the club with the Shannon Musical Society. Once the pair realised they were more than friends, a romance sparked between them. They were together 10 years before kicking things up a notch with the perfect proposal. “(Stephen) decorated the house with candles and after a day of shopping I came home to him waiting with our dog to propose,” the bride remembers fondly.  
Breaking the rules of the superstitious, a wedding date was set for January, Friday 13. With the dream date set, the details began to take shape with a ceremony at The Wells Church followed by a reception at Loughrae Hotel and Spa.  Hilary’s bridesmaids included Aine Carroll Aisling Power, Aisling Danagher, Sauna Merrigan, Carol Murphy and Katie Orpen. Stephen was joined at the alter by Donough Kenny, Bruce and Stuart Orpen, David O’Shaughnessy and Dave Lee and Jack Ryan. 
 
A very special something old.. 

“Ryano’s birth mom passed away shortly after he was born. His mom now, Ann, held onto his birth mom’s wedding band for him and presented it to him a month before the wedding. The ring was then incorporated into Ryano’s wedding band from Tadgh O Flynn jewellers in Ennis. Tadgh made Hilary’s one to match the shape of engagement ring,” the bride said.  

BRIDES OF LIMERICK TEAM 
PHOTOGRAPHER Gary Collins Photography 
VIDEOGRAPHER SES Digital 
CAKE Mini Cake Company 
DAY AFTER VENUE The Oakwood Hotel 
RINGS Tadhg O’Flynn Jewellers 
INVITES McNamara Printers & Ralph McMahon 
 
HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH GARY COLLINS PHOTOGRAPHY? 
Gary was brilliant, down to putting the ribbon on the car and just helping out on the day. He is an all- rounder and not just a photographer, he was brilliant. He was great with directions for photos on the day too.  
www.garycollinsphotography.com 

SPECIAL TOUCHES 
Hilary recorded herself singing the entrance song. She went Peech Studios the week prior to the wedding. Derek Barrett recorded and Lorraine Devaney playing guitar and she recorded 'The Girl' by Dallas Green” for her walk up the aisle. 
 
 
HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE AT LOUGH REA HOTEL AND SPA? 
"My cousin recommended Lough Rea Hotel to us and after meeting with wedding coordinator Karen, we loved the place. It was away from home and everybody got a night away and could fully relax. It was the only venue we checked out and after initial viewing we knew it was right for us. The hotel was fantastic and even kept up all the fairy lights from the Christmas season at our request." 
www.loughreahotelandspa.com 
 
 

A day of bespoke bridal dreams for Orlaith and Barry

By Michaela Keating

    Orlaith Carroll & Barry Murphy  

    May 5, 2017 - Dance Limerick (formerly Daghda Church) & Bunratty Castle Hotel  
    Photographs courtesy of Tomasz Kornas Photography 
     

    After years of designing and selling bespoke wedding dresses, it was now Orlaith Carroll’s turn to create the wedding dress of her dreams. The owner of The Attic Bridal Boutique in Limerick met rugby player, turned famous musician Barry Murphy, member of the band Hermitage Green, at one of their weekly gigs in Limerick. The pair instantly clicked, chatting after each gig. However, it took a little nudge in the right direction from a friend to set the pair up and the designer would soon be amidst the fabrics of her own wedding gown in preparation to marry the Corbally native.  

    Barry planned a laid back and intimate proposal for his bride to be and included their pet cat Scotty in popping the question. The bride fondly remembers her “perfect proposal”. 
    “It was a Sunday morning and I was woken up to music playing and the sound of Barry on the stairs. He then came in the door with Scotty, holding on to him for dear life as he had the box attached to Scotty’s collar and then he said ‘I want to ask you a question’. And, of course, I said yes!   There was also tea and toast ready outside the door so we had breakfast in bed and rang both our families to tell them the news.” 

    The pair decided to tie the knot on May 5, 2017 with a civil ceremony in Dance Limerick on John’s Square (this was formally a church) followed by a stunning reception at Bunratty Castle Hotel. 
     
    THE WEDDING PARTY 
    The stunning bride was accompanied by her maid of honour Giolla Kiely and bridesmaids Sarah Halpin, Lorna Fitzgerald, and Marcy Fox. Cuties Juliette and Rosie Murphy took on the important role of flower girls. The groom’s gang was made up of best man Dan Murphy and grooms people Brian Murphy, Evette Murphy and Cathal Garvey with page boy Harry Murphy adding that extra charm to the bridal party.  
     
     
    THE WEDDING TEAM 
    The bride donned a stunning bespoke wedding gown she custom made for herself while the bridesmaids also wore elegant black Orlaith Carroll dresses. The groom was dapper in a suit from Billy Higgins menswear. The groomsmen were slick in their Esquire suits. The beautiful flowers were by the talented Lawless Flowers. “The flowers were my favourite thing on the day! I could not have imagined a more beautiful bouquet.  Dan Lawless and his team are master of flowers,” said the bride.  

    The girls at Skin 26 were also on hand to help the bride prep her skin for the big day.  "Their skincare isn't a quick fix it is about changing your regime to improve your skin long term. My skin feels great. Aisling also did the eyelashes for me and they were amazing - so natural but full and fabulous!," the bride said of the skincare experts.  

    The wedding cake was a 3D Rice Krispie castle cake created by the bride’s dad, bringing back fond memories of childhood birthday parties. Interior designer and friend to the bride, Tullio Orlandi was on hand to ensure that the couple’s decor dreams came true on the day. Wonderful memories were captured by photographer Tomasz Kornas and Eye Capture Weddings videographer. 
    The groom also used his talents to add to the day, performing with his fellow band mates from Hermitage Green along with  Lisa Canny, Uproot Hootenany,  Cillian King and Orlaith's dad and brother for a magically musical ceremony.  

    MEMORABLE MOMENTS 
    “For me and Barry it was the quiet drink we had in the folk park, just the two of us, before we went to the hotel. We chatted to tourists drinking a little glass of Guinness sitting out in the sun, it was so lovely,” remembers Orlaith.  
     
    THE BESPOKE BRIDE  
    The bride said she had always thought of making her own wedding dress but it took a while to figure out exactly what she wanted to create. 
    “I had always loved my mother’s wedding dress with the long lace sleeves and the high mandarin collar. I think a wedding dress has to be one of the most flattering garments you’ll wear in your life and I was torn between a full skirt and a fitted, so I went for both. I achieved my ball gown dress by having the (removable) over layer which added the drama but still showed off the narrower style skirt and didn’t swamp my frame. The long sleeves were a must and I took the idea of the high neck from my mum’s dress but kept it as a round neck – a more modern take using binding on the bodice in various ways. The lace was the star of the show! Everything else was to enhance and compliment it. I had previously used it on other brides’ dresses and just fell in love! The sheer bodice and the nude lining enhanced the lace even more; finally the pearl buttons topped it all off keeping it very delicate and bridal.” 
     
     
     
     
    Something old... 
    “I displayed my Mother’s wedding dress on the day along with my grandmother’s and Barry’s mum’s dress. I love that they are all still in perfect nick and I especially love that my granny didn’t wear white, stylish lady!  My something old were my earrings which are a family heirloom, they are part of a jewellery set that was commissioned for my great great grandmother and at a closer view you will see that it is her hair that is weaved inside the casing, which is the same colour as mine. I am just in love with them.” 
     
    The bride guide on ...Preparation   
    “Take a few days beforehand to soak it all up. One of my biggest regrets about the day is that it came upon me so quickly. Give your bridesmaids and groomsmen lists of jobs for the actual day that you may forget or won’t have time to arrange like particular group shots you want with friends and family. Have one of them keeping an eye on the timing of the day. If you need to freshen up before first dance you won’t know the timing you’ll be too busy all day so give them that job.” 
     
    HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH BUNRATTY CASTLE HOTEL
     “Bunratty was out of this world! The staff were incredible. David Shelly, the manager was epic. I can be a freak when it comes to visuals and he helped put me at ease. Elaine, the banqueting supervisor looked after us incredibly. The food was so delicious, everyone commented on how well it was all cooked. The wine Dave suggested, when doing the tasting, topped it all off for me.” 
     


    Sinead's Boutique- a nationwide favourite for mothers of the bride

    By Michaela Keating 

    “Everything is going to be lovely. We don’t just do lovely. We do wow,” said store manager Michelle Sheehan while advising a mother of the groom to try something different instead. And “wow” they most certainly do at Sinead’s Boutique in Annacotty, from customer service to beautiful occasion wear pieces.  

    Pearl detailing, feathery fascinators, plush colours and luxurious fabrics line the boutique in such a way that there is a guarantee of some piece stealing your heart. Along with a wide selection of informal wear, the store has been taking care of mothers of the bride, mothers of the groom and wedding guests since it opened 17 years ago.  

    Sinead Downes and her team at Sinead's Boutique  pride their success on the quality of their customer service and once you step inside the door, it’s clear that every customer is granted the advice and assistance they need.  
    In the boutique at the same time are two mothers of the groom; one from Cork being assisted by Sinead while Michelle is taking care of another who has travelled all the way from Donegal to find the perfect outfit for their son’s big day.   

     Sinead says that the team’s honesty ensures that each customer knows that they are not just trying to make the biggest sale; they want to make sure every customer is happy leaving the store knowing they look fabulous in their chosen outfit. 
    “People are never told something is nice on them if it isn’t. We’re not going to tell them it does look nice just to make a sale. We will get customers to try different colours and styles if they’re not sure what they’re looking for and we can figure out what suits and what doesn’t," explains Sinead.  

    The lady from Cork has chosen a stunning Ian Stewart dress in silver with delicate detailing with the help of the store owner and purchased a headpiece to go with it. The collection of hats in store range in colour and style with different levels of extravagance and simplicity.  Elegante Shoes and Azure Jewellery are also carefully selected to accessorise each look.  
    With her boutique in Annacotty being a nationwide favourite for wedding attire, Sinead’s most rewarding part of her job is seeing how customers feel in their outfits.

    “I love when customers leave here happy and full of confidence. We stock sizes six to 22 and carry a range of Italian lace pieces that we stock up to a size 28. We want every woman to feel like there is something here for them and that they feel great in.  No budget is wrong. Whether you have €200 or €2000 every customer is a valued one.” 
    When it’s time to leave the ladies to it, the store is busy with women searching for an outfit, all of which are left in the most capable hands to find the perfect one at Sinead’s Boutique.  
     

    Sinead’s Top Tips
    • “It’s really important not to come with any preconceived ideas. You never know what might catch your eye when you walk into the store, so keep an open mind and try things you might not normally try. People often walk out of here loving something they were reluctant to try on!” 
    • “Dress for your shape” – An essential to feeling good on any day is feeling comfortable in what you’re wearing, so making sure to wear something that  fits you in all the right places is a must.  
    • “Try on different styles, shapes and colours”- With many years of experience dressing women for weddings, Sinead believes figuring out the ‘no’s’ will get you closer to the perfect dress. This also gives you a chance to try things you previously ruled out but could look amazing on.  
     
    Annacotty Co. Limerick 
    Telephone: 061 339 696 
    email: sinead.devane@live.ie 
    Facebook:SineadsBoutiqueAnnacotty 
     

    Make all your wedding dreams come true in the beautiful village of Adare

    By Michaela Keating

     
    Adare, one of Ireland’s prettiest towns, is not only Idyllic and picturesque- it’s the perfect location for a bride and groom-to-be to plan every aspect of their dream day.  Just a twenty minute drive from Limerick City, Adare is a haven of beautiful boutiques, amazing architecture and home to stunning wedding venues.  We take you from the outskirts to the heart of this beautiful town to show you what Adare has to offer you and your big day. 
     
    The Venue 

    Renowned for exceptional service when it comes to weddings, Fitzgerald’s WoodlandHouse Hotel lies just on the outskirts of the quaint town. Every couple’s needs are catered for and the promise of a perfect day from their experienced wedding team is delivered to each couple that chooses this family run hotel.  The award winning four star hotel is a firm favourite for wedding’s in Adare and has a stunning ballroom to celebrate a lavish wedding reception. The hotel begins a scenic and impressive route through the town that is sprinkled with businesses from wedding heaven.  
    For those having a church wedding, the Holy Trinity Abbey Church in the heart of the town is a beautiful structure lined with vast stained glass windows, creating a bright open space inside, ideal for an intimate ceremony. Just across the street, Adare Town Park is a burst of colourful flower bushes, greenery and a gazebo that can create an enchanting backdrop for your wedding pictures and capture that post-nuptial glow.  Also famous for its traditional thatched cottages, these can add an old-school twist to your wedding album.  
     
    The Style 
    All pre- wedding preparations can be taken care of with the fabulous selection of boutiques in the town. Lady Penelope Boutique resides at the top of the town and boasts a to-die-for collection of mother of the bride and wedding guest attire. Supporting mainly Irish designers, the store is full of top quality clothing and accessories. Providing a head to toe service including shoes and head wear from size six to 26, the stunning boutique is open seven days a week and brings with it the promise of securing the perfect outfit for a wedding.   
    ladypenelopeadare.ie 
     

    The Look 

    For any bride or groom to be, getting your hair looking picture perfect is something that can be helped with a little bit of preparation in advance and with some styling on the day. Aine and the team at Guys ‘n Dolls hair studio have years of expertise in preparing brides for their big day. From hair extension application consultations to finding that perfect shade for your wedding day, the service at Guys ‘n Dolls will ensure that your hair has the perfect mix of colour, volume and length for your big day. The team also provide a freelance service so that you can enjoy the getting glam the morning of your wedding in the comfort of your own home while being spruced up by some of the most talented hair stylists in Adare. Aine’s calm and professional manner will leave you feeling confident that your hair is in the right hands and her bubbly personality will help calm those pre- wedding jitters you might be feeling the morning of the big day. Aine has also teamed up with make up artists, Wedding Heaven, to provide the full package.  
    Facebook: GuysnDolls Adare 

    The Decor  

    The theme of your day gives you the opportunity to share your personality and style with family and friends. Creating an atmosphere that’s magical and romantic for your day can help your to create memories for a lifetime with a sprinkling of beautiful details in your day. The Ivy Rose Wedding Decor showroom at the Old Adare Creamery is like a rabbit hole of dreamy decor, with endless options of flower arches, signs, candle sticks and holders and seating choices. Helen, Sarah and team at Ivy Rose work to help you choice pieces suitable for your theme. Rental packages are available or the team decorate your church or venue to allow you to sit back and relax, knowing that your vision will come to life thanks to the work of the talented crew.
    www.oldcreameryco.com 
     
     
    A true case of small and mighty, Adare is a must visit for Limerick’s wedding planning couples. From scenic views and venues to boutiques and decor, this little town has got just the ingredients to your dream wedding day.  

    Celebrating the great success of Chantilly Lace

    By Niamh Barley

    Chantilly Lace started out when proprietor Emma Murray was a bride herself.  Emma saw a gap in the market for good quality bridesmaid dresses while planning her own wedding and so the exclusive bridesmaid boutique was born. The boutique is completely unlike any other in Limerick in that its sole focus is bridesmaids, giving each and every bride and her girls their complete attention and time.  
    Located on Davis Street, a mere stroll from Limerick city centre, as well as Colbert Station, Chantilly Lace could not be in a better spot for brides travelling near and far and trust us, they travel far.  
    In its first year of business, Chantilly Lace managed to walk away with the coveted ‘Editor’s Choice Award’ at the annual Brides of Limerick industry awards and its clear to see why. Once you’re greeted at the door by Emma, she is at your beck and call for the entirety of your time there. 

     A friendly smile and chatty disposition makes Emma excellent at dealing with brides and makes you feel immediately at ease when you step through the door.  Emma will do whatever she can to ensure her customers are delighted with the service she provides, even reiterating that she won’t be offended if the bride doesn’t like a dress “if you don’t like it, someone else might,” she cites. 
    The superbly stocked boutique carries sought after brands such as JLM Couture, Watters, True Bride, WTOO and Christina Wu. The store even holds some older stock so brides have more of a choice when it comes to making the decision with prices ranging from from €200-€395.  

    Chantilly Lace offers dresses to flatter all shapes and sizes that can be tried on by appointment, meaning you and your girls will have the whole place to peruse and all dresses can be purchased in a vast array of colours and delivered in about 12 weeks. Trying them on is the ultimate girly day out, with a huge dressing area separated by curtains, you and your gals will have the whole boutique to yourselves! Emma also recommends an excellent lady for alterations, meaning you don’t have to track someone down at the last minute.  

    The Chantilly Lace Experience... 
     
    On arrival to the boutique, you will be greeted by Emma, who will bring you into the front of the boutique, where you will be introduced to the dresses and brought through the designers and styles. You will then be given pegs to mark which ones you would like the girls to try on and reminded that they don’t always look the same on the hanger as they do on, so if you aren’t sure about something you might as well have the girls try it on. Then you, your bridesmaids and your dress selection are brought into the large dressing area where you can spend some time choosing the dresses for you. Emma is with you the whole time, meaning you have a second opinion if you need it, making the whole process easier with her great advice and humour.  

    Emma’s personal experience of hunting for the best bridesmaid dresses for her own wedding means that she can relate to you, which will help you find the best dresses possible for your big day. The Chantilly Lace owner handles each bride with the utmost of professionalism, while offering helpful tips and some advice that she’s picked up along the way. Her expert knowledge of the designers and current as well as upcoming trends makes Chantilly Lace the perfect place to find the bridesmaid dresses of your dreams.  
     
     
    For Emma, her role is to help bridal parties as much as possible and only interevenes on decision making when asked by the bride. 
     “I tend not to give my opinion until the bride asks me for it. I only intervene when I feel that maybe the bride is not getting what she wants and is feeling a little bit uncomfortable. Sometimes the bridesmaids can be a little bit opinionated and they can forget their role and forget that it’s the bride’s day, that’s when I would intervene. Although, usually the brides want the bridesmaids to be comfortable and happy with what they will be wearing on the day.” 

    The Chantilly Lace Facebook page is a testament to Emma’s service with reviews from delighted brides echoing how amazing Emma and Chantilly Lace is. One over-the-moon bride wrote “Just collected my bridesmaid dresses from Emma's gorgeous boutique, and I couldn't be happier! All the stress of finding bridesmaid dresses ended as soon as we met Emma. Emma has gorgeous dresses, and no request was ever too much! Emma made sure that we got exactly what we were looking for and that all the bridesmaids were happy. I can't wait to see them all dressed up on the big day! We travelled from Dublin and I recommend a road trip to Chantilly Lace no matter how far you are! You won't be disappointed!” 
     
    Emma’s Top Tips 
    Make sure the brides has secured her dress before choosing the bridesmaid’s dresses -This is important as it will determine the style of the dress you’ll choose for your bridesmaids.  
     
    Allow for plenty of time when choosing bridesmaids dresses-  Most dresses take around 12 weeks to be delivered and some may take longer (16-18 weeks), so make sure you have your dresses in enough time that they can be altered before the wedding day and not rushed.   
      
    Between Emma’s excellent customer service, the selection of dresses and the all-round calm atmosphere in the boutique, I couldn’t fault Chantilly Lace. I’ll be sure to recommend this gem to every bride-to-be I know.  


    Contact Emma
    Tel: 061 311956 

    Five minutes with wedding ceremony singer Eve Stafford

    Hey Eve, tell us a bit about yourself.

    I am a multi award winning soprano from Limerick. 
    I have been singing at church and civil wedding ceremonies, concerts and events for over six years and have won all major singing competitions at singing festivals in Cork and Limerick. As a result of my training, I am a versatile vocalist who enjoys singing all styles of music from sacred, classical, traditional Irish, light jazz and modern music.   

    What made you decide to start singing professionally?

    Music has always been a passion of mine as I was always in choirs in school 
    and played the violin, piano and guitar. I started formal voice training in my early 20s I absolutely loved it! I've always been a people person and loved weddings and music, so it was a natural progression to my dream job!
     
    What’s your favourite part of your job?
    I absolutely love meeting up with couples and choosing their unique wedding music program with them for their big day! It's so enjoyable sharing in the wedding excitement with each couple and getting a feel for the type of people they are and selecting the kind of music that will really add a touch of magic to their special day. I love sharing my expertise and advice with each couple and guiding them along the way. I am always available to help. 

    What is your most requested song from couples getting married?

    This is a difficult one to answer so I'll break it down into categories! Classical: Nella Fantasia, The Prayer & O mio babbino caro and of course the beautiful Ave maria. Irish: Mo ghra thu a thiarna & s'e an tiarna maoire. Modern: How long will I love you and Feels like home 

    What is your number one tip for couples choosing their wedding ceremony music?

    Do your homework on songs that are special to both of you that will 
    still be appropriate in a church setting and that will be enjoyed by the different age groups in your congregation. Take notes if you're attending other weddings and hear a song that you like. I love when couples come to me with musical requests and I will always accommodate them. Lastly, always check your music with your priest to make sure he is happy with your choices as they have the final say.

     
    What songs do you most enjoy performing?

    As a soprano I absolutely love singing Nella Fantasia (song version of Gabriel's oboe) and 
    'O mio babbino caro' it is so exciting as a singer to soar up to those high notes and they are firm favourites with congregations to really add the wow factor to your wedding ceremony.I also love the beautiful lyrics of 'Feels like home.' I had several brides recently who had been living abroad and requested for me to sing it as they walked down the aisle and it really was a very special choice! When I have the pleasure of being joined by a male singer I love singing 'All I ask of you', 'Come what may' and'The Prayer.'       

    Where can people check out your singing?

    Check out my Facebook page where I regularly put up live wedding recordings 
    from Limerick city, county and Munster weddings. https://www.facebook.com/evestaffordsoprano/

    Contact details
    Website: www.evestafford.ie
    E: bookings@evestafford.ie
    Tel: 085 7055526


    Ask the expert with wedding ceremony musician Barry Hughes

    Hey Barry, tell us a little bit about yourself:

    I have been a full-time professional musician for the last 4 years. I have been performing for wedding couples around Ireland and abroad for over 12 years. I studied music performance, theory and composition at third level. When I'm not performing or rehearsing for weddings I enjoy writing my own music and spend a lot of time touring Ireland and Europe performing my own songs at festivals and venues.       

     What made you decide to start singing professionally?

    I have always had a passion for music and singing and a few years back I decided to dedicate my life to music.       

    What’s your favourite part of your job?
    I enjoy working closely with the all my clients to put together a unique selection of songs & hymns and that will enhance their Wedding Ceremony.       

     What is your most requested song from couples getting married?

    There are numerous, but I have a long list of songs to choose from and I regularly enjoy introducing people to songs and hymns they may not know but they end up loving. I take great care in tailoring each set of songs to suit the couple.     

    What is your number one tip for couples choosing their wedding ceremony music?

    Take time to choose songs that are important to you and your partner. Also, always ask your Wedding Singer/Musician for advice if you need it.     
       
     I have many many years of experience and I have lot of advice and tips to share with you should you get in touch. Testimonials, videos and reviews can all be seen on my Facebook page or via email. Facebook search "Barry Hughes Wedding Singer". I'm delighted that I have now dedicated all my time to performing music for people. When you contact me you will receive a quick reply and a very prompt and professional service from the initial enquiry to your Wedding day. 

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WeddingSingerEIRE/
    Tel: 087 0926046
    E: weddingsingerEIRE@gmail.com
    Youtube: Wedding Singer Eire

    Ask the expert with wedding ceremony singer Kerry Jane Hurley

    Tell us a bit about yourself 
     
    “Based in County Limerick, I am a professional singer specialising in wedding ceremonies and pre-dinner receptions. I am also a vocal coach and choral director. Although I am classically trained, I enjoy singing all music genres, which is imperative when you are wedding singer so you can cater for everyone’s musical tastes! I was delighted and honoured to win the Brides of Limerick Wedding Best Ceremony Musician Award for the past two years at the Wedding Industry Awards.” 
     
    You perform at a lot of weddings, what tips do you have for couples when choosing their wedding ceremony music? 
     
    “Once your wedding date is confirmed, shop around for a ceremony singer as soon as possible - reputable singers are often booked up to two years in advance.  
    Most couples are on a budget for their wedding day but try not to cut costs when choosing your music; it plays such an integral part within your ceremony. Research ceremony singers, ask for testimonials and view videos of your singers or musicians performing live before you book. I often post videos of sound checks on Facebook, Youtube and Instagram to give couples an idea of my voice.”  
     
    What are some of your favourite songs to perform? 
     
    “For a wedding, my favourites would be ‘Nella Fantasia’, ‘The Blower’s Daughter’ by Damien Rice, ‘Tenerife Sea’ by Ed Sheeran and I love the serenity of the hymn ‘Make me a channel of your peace’. You also can’t beat raising the roof with ‘O Holy Night’ at a Christmas wedding, so festive!” 
     
    What songs are most popular for weddings recently? 
    “Pachelbel’s Canon in D is still a favourite for a bridal entrance, as are ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’, the ever popular ‘How Long Will I Love You’ and ‘A Thousand Years’. ‘The Blowers Daughter’ by Damien Rice and ‘Warm’ by the Coronas are also popular. The most popular hymns are ‘The Hiding Place’, ‘The Cloud’s Veil’ and ‘On Eagles Wings’ and the most popular recessional songs I sing are ‘Marry You’ and ‘Ho Hey’. My most requested classical pieces are ‘Nella Fantasia’, Schubert’s ‘Ave Maria’ and ‘Panis Angelicus’.”  
     
     
    What things should couples bear in mind when choosing music for their ceremony? 
     
    “To say your ceremony music is important is an understatement! It sets the scene and creates ambience for your wedding day, especially during those special, personal moments within your ceremony, when you can hear a pin drop. A bride will never forget walking down the aisle to meet her groom and a couple will never forget exiting their venue as husband and wife. So song choice is key! 
     
    About two to three months before your wedding day, arrange a meeting with your musician/singer to discuss your music. Some couples choose to do this before they print their mass booklets so they can include their song choices in the text. Others prefer not to so there is an element of surprise. It is totally up to the couple. 
     
    And don’t forget! If you are having a church wedding, make sure you consult with your priest before making a final decision on your song choices as restrictions will apply most of the time. Your wedding singer can advise you on this also.” 
     

    Kerry’s top tip:  
    “Trying to whittle down to your chosen songs can be a toughie and very confusing! Meet your wedding singer/musician for a coffee, and ask them for ideas and inspiration - that is what we are here for! And most importantly, remember you are choosing your soundtrack for the best day of your life, so enjoy every minute!

    http://www.kerryjanehurley.com/

    Tracey and Joseph celebrate their nuptials in Listowel

    Tracey Noonan & Joseph McAuliffe -July 30, 2017- Milford Church & Listowel Arms Hotel 
    Photographs courtesy of JDM Photography 
     
     
    THE DETAILS
    Bridesmaids Laura Noonan, Michelle Keane, Maureen Mullane, Orla Noonan 
    Flowers Girls Chloe Doran and Aoibhin Noonan 
    Groomsmen Denis McAuliffe, Alan Fitzpatrick and Ger McAuliffe  
    Page Boys Jack McAuliffe and JJ Quigley  
    Hair Leighanne Shanahan and Moyra Brown    
    Make up Jackie Kelly  
    Videographer SES Digital 
     
     
    PERSONAL TOUCHES
    “I used material from my communion veil that my godmother had made and incorporated it into my bouquet. Instead of traditional favours we made a donation to Cancer research charities on behalf of all our guests.” 
    Advice for brides planning their wedding “Enjoy the lead up to your wedding and during the day together. Take a moment, stand back and just look at all your family and friends. It's a fabulous memory to have together.” 
     
     
    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH YOUR VENUE LISTOWEL ARMS HOTEL? 
    “The minute we walked in to Listowel Arms we knew this was the perfect place for our wedding. With the vintage style, homely feel and the welcoming staff it was amazing. No job was too big or small. Patrice and her staff made our day so relaxed and special.”  
    www.listowelarms.com 
     

    Sinéad was flying high after Noel’s surprise getaway proposal

    Sinéad Powell & Noel Houlihan - June 3, 2016- Our Lady Star of the Sea Church & The Falls Hotel 
    Photographs courtesy of Mrs Redhead Photography 

     
    By Carrie Moloney 
    Love is in the air; an age-old phrase but one that certainly rings true for high-flying couple Sinéad Powell and Noel Houlihan, who both work in aviation in Dublin. Sinéad, from Donaghmore, Co. Limerick, met Noel, originally from Tipperary Town, when they both began working for the same airline and on June 3, 2016 the happy couple tied the knot in a romantic ceremony in Co. Clare. 

    THE PROPOSAL 
    Working in aviation has its benefits. Noel managed to convince Sinéad to come with him on what was supposed to be a “work trip” to Finland, where he popped the question in a winter wonderland. The couple flew to the Arctic Circle, where they stayed in a glass igloo village in Kakslauttanen. On the second night, the pair bundled up for a night-time sleigh ride through the forest under the glorious Northern Lights and Noel proposed with a family ring – having been sure to ask Sinéad’s father for permission, first. A delighted Sinéad was quick to say “yes!”, and the couple then flew to Antwerp where they designed Sinéad’s white gold emerald-cut engagement ring from scratch.  

    THE DETAILS 
    The ceremony took place in Our Lady Star of the Sea Church in Quilty, Co. Clare, with celebrations following at stunning The Falls Hotel, Ennistymon, where 150 guests gathered to cheer the newlyweds on. The talented Olga from Mrs Redhead Photography was there to capture all the best bits of the day on camera.  
    Having designed her own engagement ring, Sinéad worked with Mary Frost of Mathew Stephens Jewellers in Limerick to create a wedding band to match. The couple also chose Noel’s brushed platinum ring here, and the gentlemen of the bridal party stayed local by sourcing their suits from Esquires in Limerick. 
    Sinéad found a stunning Pronovias wedding dress in De Stafford Bridal in Nenagh and she oozed elegance on her wedding day.  

    THE BIG DAY 
    The final touches before “I do” began, as they always do, with an extra-special bridal beauty blitz. Sinéad’s make-up was done beautifully by Susan Fox, while the finishing touches were put to her wedding-day style by Siobhán’s Hair Salon in Corbally. 
    Sinéad walked up the aisle to “Story Book Love”, with her fabulous bridesmaids (sister Orla and best friend Harriet) looking radiant in mint green Jenny Packham. “Seeing Sinéad for the first time was one of the most special moments of the entire day,” says Noel, who waited at the top of the aisle flanked by groomsmen Tim and Sam, along with nephew Ricky, who acted as usher on the day.  
    Following kisses and congratulations outside the church, it was on to The Falls Hotel, where all the celebrations kicked off. As the speeches were set to begin, this fun-loving duo had another surprise in store, as Noel and some carefully planted accomplices led a playful aircraft safety demonstration to ensure wedding guest safety throughout the evening. All of the shenanigans were recorded for posterity by videographer Declan Gleeson of SES Digital, who made sure that the bride and groom wouldn’t forget a moment of their special day. 

    HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH THE FALLS HOTEL? 
    “From the moment we saw The Falls, we fell in love with the hotel and its charm. We were treated so well and we never felt that we were just another wedding. Michael, Patrick and the team pulled out all the stops and catered for our every need. One of our friends had to stay in their hotel room as their daughter wasn’t settling and the team at The Falls brought the wedding meal to the room. This wasn’t requested, and it’s just one example of how the staff went above and beyond for us.”  www.thefallshotel.com  
     
    HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WORKING WITH OLGA FROM MRS REDHEAD PHOTOGRAPHY 
     “Working with Olga can only be described as great fun! Her style was relaxed and informal – nothing was a problem. We’ve never laughed so much as we did with Olga, especially when it came to the ‘Trash the Dress’ shoot! She encouraged our fun and wild side and as a result, we got amazing photos and memories that are still a talking point amongst our families and friends.” www.mrsredhead-foto.com

    The perfect civil ceremony at The Greenhills Hotel for Helen and Patrick

    Helen Mullane & Patrick Browne 

    March 24, 2017- Ceremony and reception at the Greenhills Hotel 
     
    Photographs courtesy of Tony Clancy Photography 
     
     
      
    Some couples are just meant to be and for Helen Mullane and Patrick Browne, there was no question that they were the perfect match from childhood. The pair have known each other all their lives as Patrick went to school with Helen’s brother. They officially got together fifteen years ago, with the Southill native popping the question to his lifelong love two years later in the romantic setting of a French restaurant in New York City.  Helen delightedly accepted and the couple decided to have a long engagement. The wedding date was later set for March 24, 2017 with a ceremony and reception at the stunning Greenhills Hotel celebrated with their guests and two beautiful children Kate and Jason.  
     
     
    THE WEDDING PARTY 
     
    The bride’s glowing girl squad was made up of bridesmaids Kate Browne, the couple’s daughter, Philly Keyes and Caroline Browne.  The groom was joined at the altar by Ray and Nelious Browne while the bride’s brother Tony gave her away to her new husband.  
     
     
    THE DETAILS 
     
    Once Helen and Patrick had secured their dream wedding location at the Greenhill Hotel, they  began their quest to find their vendors. The talented team at Matthew Stephen’s Jewellers worked with the couple to choose stunning rings that will be cherished for a lifetime. The bride's best friend Ciara and her partner Paul treated the guests to beautiful singing throughout the ceremony. The bridesmaids were stunning in Debenhams dresses.  
     
     
     
     
     
    MEMORABLE MOMENTS  
     
    “The most memorable part of the day was the sand ceremony which included our kids so it was very special. The first dance was lovely too because the kids helped us pick the song. The weather was unbelievable; the sun was shining all day. The whole day went great even better than we had planned I would have done it all again the next day.” 
     
    ADVICE  
    “The advice I would give brides is to get things booked early, don’t get too stressed out, and enjoy every minute of the day it goes by too quickly.” 
     
    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPEREINCE WITH TONY CLANCY PHOTOGRPAHY 
     
    “Working with Tony Clancy was great. He was very professional and he made was feel so relaxed. He wasn’t putting pressure on us. He was like part of the wedding party just mingling taking pictures. I would highly recommend him to anyone.”   www.clancyphotography.ie 
     
    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH THE GREENHILLS HOTEL? 
     
    “The Greenhills put on a lovely day from start to finish for us. The venue was really beautiful. The hotel did a great job everything was fab and the staff were lovely. They couldn’t do enough. Daphne Green from the Greenhills was a great help with planning our big day, she was very professional and friendly and she helped take a lot of the stress out of it. As we had the civil ceremony in the hotel we were using three different rooms and they were all done up beautifully. There was real attention to detail and the food was delicious, we couldn’t fault it.” www.greenhillsgroup.com 

    The perfect Adare wedding for Marsha and Pat

    April 17, 2017- The Fitzgerald's Woodlands House Hotel, Adare 
    Photographs courtesy of Baker Photography 

    Marsha Murphy from Ballinacurra, Limerick met her husband to be, Pat Moran, at work in an electrical company over twelve years ago. The pair has since become a family of four with their two beautiful daughters Emma and Keeva. The family now reside in the groom’s hometown of Tuam, Galway.  
    After an intimate proposal involving the girls, a wedding date was set for April 17, 2017 to be celebrated at the stunning Fitzgerald's Woodland’s House Hotel in Adare. Making the most of their quaint location, Adare’s Town Park was an ideal setting for some stunning pictures taken by the talented team at Baker Photography.  
    The newlyweds were joined by their daughters and enjoyed taking some scenic photos amongst the greenery of the park together and as a family. The gazebo proved to be a stunning backdrop for the couple's shots with the natural woodland theme being a focal point throughout the day. The soothing stream and leafy walkway allowed for the family to enjoy some time on their own before heading to their dream reception venue.  
     
    TELL US ABOUT YOUR VENUE THE FITZGERALD' WOODLANDS HOTEL  
    “The Woodlands has a lovely setting in the countryside where we found the staff warm and friendly. David and Elaina Fitzgerald were extremely helpful in organising the day itself. We couldn’t ask for more especially when it came to the fine detail. We cannot praise them enough,” the groom said. 
    “The Woodlands team provided an outstanding service from when we arrived to when we left. All our guests have been complimenting the hotel since. The food service was fantastic too. I was delighted we had picked Woodlands for our reception they provided my fairytale wedding. I didn’t want it to end,” the bride gushed.  

    Kate Deegan creates farmyard fairytale wedding for Niamh and Gavin

    Niamh Corbet & Gavin Satchwell  July 8, 2016 –  The couple’s home farm  Photographs courtesy of the Woodards Photography   

    By Michaela Keating

     Blushing bride Niamh Corbet met her handsome farmer man Gavin Satchwell in a nightclub in 2003 and have been together ever since. The couple have a beautiful little girl together named Willow and are currently expecting their second child.   After 11 years Gavin decided it was time to ask the all-important question at home over dinner. “Gavin just popped down on one knee when we had finished eating. It was the ideal situation for me as I would have known something was up otherwise,” the bride remembers fondly.   The wedding date was set for July 8, 2016 with a stunning marquee reception at the couple’s farm at home.  

    THE WEDDING PARTY
     
    Joining the bride at the altar were her beautiful bridesmaids Louise Halton, Caroline Bell and Liadh Ui Chinneide. The grooms’ gang included Tom Satchwell and Luke Satchwell. 

    THE WEDDING PLANNER
     
     
    In order to pull off a seamless day, for Niamh and Gavin securing a wedding planner that could envisage their dream day was a must. Kate Deegan exceeded the couples’ expectations from her first meeting with them and proved she was just the woman for the job.  “From our first meeting to our wedding day, Kate was just an absolute pleasure to have on board and she leaves no stone unturned when it comes to details,” the bride said.   “One of the main things we loved about Kate when we met her was the fact that she was forthcoming with ideas but was not in the slightest way pushy. We were a bit worried about meeting someone who would think our ideas were really silly but Kate never made us feel that way at all and that is exactly what we wanted. She is a very unassuming person and on top of this, she is just so nice."   

    Meaningful 
    moments
     
    Your wedding is a celebration of you as a couple, so introducing something as simple as a song that has meaning to you both can be a highlight of your day, as was the case with Niamh and Gavin.  “We were together maybe four months when we had our first argument which was over something really silly. When we were making up, ‘Be Mine’ by David Gray began to play and we always said that if we ever got married, this would be our first dance song. We never thought at 18 years of age that it would ever end up being a reality. It was quite overwhelming,” the bride gushed.    

    PERSONAL TOUCHES 
     
    Having their wedding reception at home on the family farm was a special touchWe included elements of both of our interests and incorporated these in small ways to give our wedding a personal twist. The setting though was quite unique as our marquee had glass walls so guests could look out and see donkies, sheep and cattle outside the windows,” Niamh said.   Kate’s special touch also helped add that extra bit of magic to the fairytale farmland day.  “Kate knows what 'works' well at weddings and what really just doesn't. One of the things I loved most that she suggested was the hanging roses as part of some of the centrepieces that we used on the day - they were stunning,” the bride said of the intricate details arranged by Kate.    

         Communication is key ...  “Poor Kate must have had at least one email a day from me for a year in the run up to our wedding, sometimes more, and every single email would be answered. She just treats you like you are the only wedding she has and that her time is endless. For somebody with three children, I have no idea how she manages this, I found it utterly astounding. I remember the morning Kate went in to have her third baby, she was emailing me, she's just that dedicated and that is exactly what you want when you're trying to plan your wedding!,” the bride said.   

      ADVICE FOR BRIDES PLANNING THEIR WEDDING  “I really recommend looking at getting a planner if you are having a wedding at home as I don’t think either myself or Gavin could have pulled off the day we had without one. There are too many details that would get overlooked and it is an investment into your day and will save your sanity.”  

    http://co-me.net/

    Piccadilly was the perfect place for Gary to propose to Leighanne

    Leighanne Shanahan & Gary Egan  April 1, 2017- Holy Cross Church, Kenmare & Kenmare Bay Hotel  Photographs courtesy of Black Diamond Photography    

    By Michaela Keating

    Leighanne Shanahan met her husband to be Gary Egan on a night out twelve years ago and sparks flew instantly. The pair soon turned into three when their son Sammy joined their family two years later. Gary decided to pop the question on the day of Sammy’s eighth birthday with a stunning sparkler from Keane’s jewelers on a ferris wheel in Piccadilly Square on April 18, 2015 and Leighanne delightedly accepted.  They chose to celebrate their wedding on Leighanne’s 30th birthday, on April 1, 2017 with a ceremony in Holy Cross Church followed by a reception at the stunning Kenmare Bay Hotel, Co. Kerry celebrated with 340 guests.     

    THE WEDDING PARTY
     
    The stunning bride was led up the aisle on the day by her niece Emma Lynch and her sister Sandra Lynch. At the side of the dashing groom were Gary’s brothers Ross and Donal Egan. Lainey Shanahan and Daithi O’Mahoney were the adorable flower girl and page boy on the day. 

    THE WEDDING TEAM
     
    The couple pulled together a team of experts to deliver their dream wedding. The incredibly talented Kaspars from Black Diamond Photography was there to capture every special moment as it happened.  The bride was stunning in a gown by Moirlee while FMN Make Up created a beautiful make up and Blush Studio completed the bridal look with a fabulous hairstyle. The bridal party donned gowns from bridesmaid store favourite, Kate’s Kloset.   Kenmare Flowers provided the beautiful floral arrangements that lined the venue along with the bridal bouquets. Angelic church music was provided by Angela Ryan, with the Ian Hendricks Band picking up the pace for the wedding reception. Videographer Jim Liston captured cherished memories on camera from the wedding.             

     
    THE HEN PARTY   “Thirty two mad ladies began the day at Whelan’s in Newcastle West and then headed off to Killarney with a few pit stops on the way.  We continued the following day ending up back in Newcastle West.  It certainly was a week to remember,” said the bride.    

    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE AT THE
     KENMARE BAY HOTEL
     
    Our wedding coordinator Tom was amazing as was the reception itself from start to finish; food, setting everything was just great. All our guests spoke so highly of the top class staff. Our guests in particular commented on the beautiful the meal we were served on the day.  Words can't express how much our big day meant to us and Kenmare Bay Hotel and staff just made it all the more special."  www.kenmarebayhotel.com   

    HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WORKING 
    WITH BLACK DIAMOND PHOTOGRAPHY? 
     
    “Kaspar from Black Diamond Photography was just brilliant; he made us feel so relaxed.  He knew exactly what we wanted and got the perfect photos with minimum fuss.  Our photos were so natural and captured our day fantastically.” http://blackdiamondphotography.ie/ 


    Karen and Mark's lakeside wedding

    Photos courtesy of Cardem Photography 

    By Michaela Keating
     
     Karen O'Connor moved to Australia in 2012 where she met UK born chef Mark Belton. Karen was starting a new job with her future husband and it was Mark's responsibility to pick up the newbie. He was instantly taken with the Clare native. It wasn’t long before the chef was cooking up the perfect proposal for his future fiancé and popped the question on a romantic trip to Bali for Karen's birthday. "Mark began his speech as I started to cry. I still to this day have no idea what he said but I said’ YES’!," the bride fondly remembers.  
    The wedding date was set for June 17, 2017, with a humanist ceremony and stunning reception at the Lakeside Hotel, Killaloe.  

    THE WEDDING PARTY  
    The blushing bride was joined by her beautiful bridesmaids Sarah O’Conner and Michelle Hall. The groom was joined by his pals Chris Kurien and Iain Boyd. 


    THE DETAILS 
    The couple chose the stunning gardens of the Lakeside Hotel in Killaloe to celebrate their wedding day, with a humanist ceremony, followed by a reception with a view overlooking the lake at the beautiful venue. Along with the perfect details threaded throughout their day, the main highlight for the groom was being reunited with friends from all over the world. “It was honestly the happiest day of my life. We had people from New Zealand, Australia, Canada and the UK fly over to witness our day," mentioned Mark.  
    The couple worked with Tadhg at Tadhg O’Flynns jewellers, Ennis to create their ideal wedding rings. The pair were delighted with the craftsmanship. Tadhg made Karen’s ring to fit perfectly around her engagement ring as a one of a kind piece.  Mark also wanted something a little different and so Tadhg came up with the idea of black diamonds for the grooms' ring.  



    See more in Brides of Limerick Magazine available in you local store now. 

    A Way With Words

    Tips on how to write your own vows

    By Michaela Keating                                         

      
    Fancy ditching the clichés for something a little more you? The most intimate part of any wedding is the exchanging of vows so use these moments in your wedding day to say what you really want to say. It doesn’t have to be a soppy sonnet with some Shakespearean language even you don’t understand. Here are some ideas to help you get the words out.  


    Roll with the times


    This ain’t the eighteen hundreds people so there’s no need to be completely cautious with your wording. Keep it tasteful but also keep it real to you and your other half. Your vows are the perfect place to promise not to watch an episode of your favourite Netflix show without them or to set Friday only as take away night.  

    The entertainment factor


    If seriousness isn’t your strong point but cracking jokes is, then embrace it! There are no rules to say that you can’t add a bit of banter to your wedding vows and by adding inside jokes between you and your future husband or wife, it adds an extra personal touch. Your friends and family will also get a laugh from your vows and it will have potential to be one of the more enjoyable and memorable parts of the day for your guests.  

    Keep it quirky

    Another way to add a bit of yourselves into your vows is to include specific quirks your partner has. Certain colour bed linen, an obsession with Harry Potter, only eating specific foods are all worthy titbits of information to add into your vows. This can be part of the ‘accepting the for who they are’ stage, even if their obsession with pugs has gotten out of hand one too many times...

     
    Old school

    Remember the days of posting letter instead of sending texts? Go back to old school and pen a letter to your partner and read out each others piece when saying your vows. This can be a cute addition and bring something different to your ceremony. This one also has potential to bring on some tears so keep your tissues close at hand.  

    Rhyme it
     

    Again, you don’t have to go all philosophical on your wedding attendees but if you have a way of making things sway (clearly not our forte) and have a good grasp on creating a catchy little speech, go for it! This can also be a sweet keepsake from your day that can be kept for future generations. 

    Spiritual ceremonies by registered solemnisers

    Spiritual Ceremonies have been privileged to have walked with thousands of couples, from all over the world, on their journey toward their special day here in Ireland since 2010.  We travel the length and breadth of Ireland, from Cork to Donegal, seven days a week, making memories with our couples on their special day.  In fact, we performed the first legal outdoor wedding ceremony in Ireland in April 2011.  Most of these couples had questions, just like you may have, so the information below is intended to answer some of those. Some people ask us, what do you mean by spiritual? A religious person may be spiritual, but a spiritual person is not necessarily religious, thus all activity be it physical, emotional, intuitional and so forth that leads towards greater perfection, goodness and wholeness is therefore spiritual.  The definition of spirituality encompasses real self, of us.. truth of our inner self… the inner being, hence why our ceremonies always focus ON YOU. 

    We have a large team of Registered Solemnisers available in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, all of whom can perform the legal element of a wedding ceremony.  We also perform vow renewals, wedding blessings, naming ceremonies and end of Life Celebrations (Funerals).  We are highly trained to design your ceremony, to reflect your personal needs because we understand this is one of the most important days of your lives and we ensure your ceremony is created “WITH YOU, FOR YOU ABOUT YOU”.
     

    We at Spiritual Ceremonies, take time with you to design your ceremony, so that it reflects you as a couple, honouring your beliefs and values, ensuring they are reflected in the content and length of your ceremony.  When speaking with your Celebrant you can choose any theme of music, readings or poems that convey a message about you and your partner.  We can also perform the ceremony indoors and outdoors (outdoors is subject to requirements under the Civil Registrations legislation).   

    www.spiritualceremonies.ie 

    +35316853723

    A musical wedding celebration for Michelle and Gavin

    Michelle O'Mahony and Gavin Moore

    October 2, 2016 - Micho Russo Music Hall & Hotle Doolin, Co. Clare

    Photographs courtesy of Mrs RedHead Photography


    Although Gavin Moore is a musical man, he doesn’t always get the timing right. He and his cousins were out in a local nightclub when Michelle O’Mahony first caught his eye. After a while he plucked up the courage to make a move, his signature move in fact, and flipped Michelle 180 degrees, which is where his timing (or lack thereof) came in. He dropped poor Michelle on her head, but it seems that he made a lasting first impression which he skilfully followed up with funny and romantic letters. Michelle finally gave in to his charm after a few weeks and the rest, as they say, is history. The couple are the proprietors of the famous Monk’s Lane restaurant in Cork.  

    Gavin, the nephew of national treasure Christy Moore, took Michelle to Ballyvolane House in Castlelyons for a romantic getaway and one evening before dinner the lovebirds decided to go for a stroll in the walled garden on the hotel’s grounds. “All the staff were in on it as it was the first proposal in the House. He opened the gate and we walked through the garden full of manicured hedgerows, flowers, trees and sweet peas. We came to a table and two chairs in the garden set up with Champagne and candles at sunset. I walked straight past and said jeez that looks lovely somebody must be eating outside tonight, he called me back and got on one knee. I had no idea, it was terribly romantic,” Michelle remembers. 

    Shortly after that a date was set for October 2, 2016 and the couple celebrated their wedding at Micho Russell Music Hall followed by a reception at Hotel Doolin, Co. Clare.  

    THE WEDDING TEAM 
    Michelle got her wedding dress from Folkster Kilkenny and the groom was kitted out by the fabulous Sean Murray’s in Skibbereen. The beautiful bridesmaids wore dresses from ASOS while the groomsmen also got their suit’s from Sean Murray’s. The bride’s shoes were bought in New Look and her accessories in Azure, Cork. The wedding rings were a bespoke design from Aoife O’Mahony in Skibbereen. 

    Mrs Read Head Photography and her sidekick Alex captured the couple’s day beautifully and Ambiguous Fiddle Media caught the day on film so the bride and groom didn’t miss a thing. Bridget Carlin was the couple’s humanist celebrant, “She did a fantastic job in making the ceremony fun and relaxed and had great suggestions for us beforehand as well.” 

    Vintage Cut Flowers took care of all of the couple’s floral needs for the big day and also collaborated with Caitlin Ruth of Deasys Restaurant, Clonakilty in decorating the wedding cake. The couple’s wedding stationery was made by Mika and Hotel Doolin. Donna O’Neill from Pin Up Hair took care of Michelle’s hair and the bride’s sister Siobhan did her makeup on the day. 

    The couple included loads of fantastic friends and family members by way of music for the day and The Choons, Blackie O’Connell and Hotel Doolin’s Jazz Quartet all provided entertainment throughout the festivities. 

    LOOK & VIBE OF THE DAY 
    The bride describes the day as relaxed, joyous and musical and the look as rustic, countryside and casual with bursts of colour from the flowers and décor. “Great food, great wines and great people, a magical few days,” Michelle recalls, wishing it could’ve lasted longer. 

    PERSONAL TOUCHES 
    A huge amount of personality went into making this wedding a success. Michelle’s sister’s boyfriend made the bride and groom a beautiful personalised wine box which was made from Gavin’s grandfather’s wine merchant boxes. The wedding guests each placed a note into the box and Michelle and Gavin will open it in five years to reminisce about their big day. Gavin’s uncle Luka Bloom wrote a song for the ceremony. The newlyweds are also delighted to have had so many of their friends and family involved in the day, from the hair to the music and everything in between the people they love were involved and it made the day much more personal. 

    The happy couple also recreated Gavin’s ‘signature move’ from the first time they met, although this time the ending was much more successful. 

    ADVICE 
    Michelle has some wisdom to impart on all you brides-to-be in the midst of your wedding planning, “Don’t get stressed. Trust that the venue know what they are doing. Most of all enjoy the day, you spend 12 months building up to it and it barely lasts the blink of an eye.” 

    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH MRS RED HEAD PHOTOGRAPHY
    “Mrs Red Head was fantastic from start to finish. She popped into us the day before so we could sit down and have a chat about the way we wanted the day to go. We explained that we didn’t want a lot of formal photos and she really took our wish on board. She arrived on the morning of the wedding with Alex and they really felt like part of the wedding. Very relaxed vibe. Alex went with the boys and got some really good shots of them swimming and getting ready. It was lovely to look back on these as I missed that part of the day. It was a lovely surprise seeing them. I would definitely recommend Mrs Red Head. I hope our paths will cross again.” 

    www.mrsredhead-foto.com

    Save up for your special day!

    By Niamh Bartley

    Weddings are always going to be expensive affairs, but there certainly are ways to cut down the cost. Pair that with some handy tips for saving up your money before the wedding and you should save yourself a lot of hassle and debt when all is said and done.

    Take your time
    Unless you’re desperate to be married to your fiancé before the year is out, take your engagement slow and you’ll have so much time to research vendors without compromising on quality by leaving it too late. You could also get early-bird deals on some of the more expensive parts of the wedding day, even the venue could provide you with a deal if you book far in advance and there’s also no chance of last minute booking fees being added on.

    Off-season
    Get married at a unique time of year and save yourselves a couple of grand. If you go right on either end of peak-season you’ll still benefit from the weather and the spring or autumnal vibes, but at a much lower price. You also won’t have to worry about the hotel being overbooked or lack of accommodation for out of town guests, as a lot of hotels won’t be at capacity in off-peak times.

    Pick and choose your vendors wisely
    Obviously, it’s great if your vendors recommend others they have worked with before to you, just make sure these other vendors are coming in under or at your budget. Don’t feel pressured into choosing a florist that comes in at a higher price than you had planned, just because your venue have recommended them. Another option would be to try and get a package deal, so if you choose the florist that was recommended you could get 10% off or something like that. Always chance a bargain.

    Fake the cake
    If you want an extravagant cake but you don’t like the price tag, use a dummy cake made from styrofoam and have it decorated for a fraction of the cost of a real cake. Display the dummy cake throughout the reception and have it brought away afterwards. You could then buy (or bake) some sheet cake for the guests to eat and everybody will be none the wiser. This will save you a couple of hundred euro and you won’t have to watch your guests eat the fabulous creation that was your wedding cake.

    Kitture weddings takes on Dowton Abbey

    Wedding stylist extraordinaire Catriona Shelton of Kitture Weddings tapped into her inner love for all things grandeur and styled an amazing photoshoot based on the ever so popular Downton Abbey theme. Catriona, who has been asked by clients to use this theme as an inspiration to style their own weddings, got right down to work. She joined forces with some of Limerick’s finest wedding vendors and together they pulled off a beautiful shoot at the Castle Oaks House Hotel in Limerick.

    Downton Abbey follows the storyline of the Earl of Grantham, his wife and three daughters; as well as the servants who work in their beautiful castle. “The goal of this shoot was to reflect old world elegance in a clean, classic, and timeless way and we found the perfect location in the stunning Georgian Manor, that is the Castle Oaks House Hotel, which is set on beautiful grounds on the banks of the River Shannon and who’s décor has a unique charm, combining contemporary and period styles,” share Catriona. While also staying on trend with the 2017 greenery theme, Catriona and her team used an abundance of luscious leaves and cream accents to keep it simple yet elegant, just like what you would see on screen at Downton Abbey.

    Celina from Celina’s Cakes was the mastermind behind the stunning cake and the greenery trend was also captured in the design. Gold accents were an additional important hue to introduce to the day and this was very evident from beginning to end. Orla of Limelight Wedding Stationery also created gold lettering for the invites which brought it all together. “We felt that this detail brought a rich, vintage touch to the scenes.”

    The dress from The Little White Dress and suit from Scanlon’s Menswear were a beautiful reflection of the 1920’s style which was photographed by the talented and creative Kaspars from Black Diamond Photography and captured on video by Ben O Sullivan Video.

    Real life couple (and not just models) Rachael and Kevin were looked after very well by Dearbhaile of Obsessed Hair and Make Up. Irish Diamond Limousine supplied the vintage car to take the shoot on the road and Brides of Limerick were on hand to see it all come together.

    THE TEAM
    Venue: Castle Oaks House hotel
    Photography: Black Diamond Photography
    Video: Ben O Sullivan Video
    Styling & Flowers: Kitture Weddings
    Cake: Celina’s Cakes
    Dress: The Little White Dress
    Suit: Scanlon’s Menswear NCW
    Car: Irish Diamond Limousines
    Make Up: Rachael O Connor
    Hair: Obsessed Hair Salon
    Stationery: Limelight Wedding Stationery
    Models: Rachael O Connor & Kevin MC Mahon

    No bridesmaids? No problem!

    By Niamh Bartley

    There are plenty of reasons to steer clear of a bridal party, whether you can’t choose between your besties or there’s no one you could imagine sharing top table with apart from your future husband. Regardless of why your bridesmaid-less, we have some great advice on how to pull it off with style.

    Ask for help
    Many of you considering having no bridal party are probably freaking out that you’ll have no help when it comes to planning your wedding. A simple solution to this is to ask for help, ask whoever you can to lend a hand here and there. Having bridesmaids doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll help you anyway, the people you choose could be busy or unwilling to help out so you’re better off having a girl’s night of invitation assembling with your besties than picking and choosing who you want there.

    Less drama
    Friendships can be complicated, especially female ones, so cut out the drama by skipping the bridal party. You’ll save so much time and your friendships will escape unscathed from the wedding planning process. Make sure you let your close friends know that you’re not having a bridal party or it might make them feel like you are but not including them, yikes. There could still be a few sour sisters sad that you’re not including them, but there are other ways to involve family than in the bridal party.

    Save some money
    In the long run, having a bridal party is going to cost a fair bit of money. It’s common courtesy to pay for their dresses, and for the sake of the pictures you’ll want them dressed well. On top of that you’ll have to pay for extra bouquets, jewellery, cars and so much more. Having no bridal party could relieve some financial pressure that can come with a wedding and you can relax on your big day that much more.

    No pressure
    This one comes from the potential bridesmaid’s perspective, being asked to be someone’s bridesmaid is a huge honour and one that a lot of people couldn’t say no to. This can cause a problem for someone who has a huge workload or a lot going on their own lives. They’ll have to dedicate some of their time to you and your wedding which could put some strain on them and you certainly don’t want someone involved in your wedding who can’t put their heart in it. 

    A subtle proposal was all Sarah McMullan needed to say yes to the love of her life

    Sarah McMullan and Sean Balfe

    October 18, 2016 - St. John's Church Tralee & The Earl of Desmond Hotel

    Photographs courtesy of Baker Photography

    Shanagolden native Sean Balfe fell in love with Kerry woman Sarah McMullan when he went for a job interview back in 2009, Sarah was the interviewer and they both felt a connection instantly. A few months later they went out for a drink for the first time and have been together ever since. The happy couple now live in Newcastle West with their adored son Liam. 

    Sean’s subtle proposal went right over Sarah’s head. On the morning of St. Stephen’s Day, their four-year anniversary, they were casually talking and Sean slipped in the words “will we get married?” Of course Sarah said yes, but she was under the impression that he was joking around until he went downstairs and told Sarah’s mom about the proposal. She then realised what had happened and was over the moon with the news. The lovebirds went to New York for Sarah’s 30th birthday which is where they picked out her engagement ring. They settled on a fabulous and unusual ring with three stones, symbolising their family, as Sarah was pregnant with their son Liam at the time.

    Sarah and Sean celebrated their wedding day with a magical ceremony at St. John’s Church, Tralee which was followed by a lavish reception at The Earl of Desmond Hotel with 165 of their closest family and friends.

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    The bride was led down the aisle by the beautiful Ruth O’Keeffe, Claire Greene and Rachel Foran while James Balfe, Donal Balfe and Padraig Balfe were the dapper groomsmen on the day. There was a serious injection of cuteness from the bride and groom’s son, Liam, who was their pageboy and the adorable Niamh O’Keeffe was flowergirl.

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    Sarah found the perfect dress in Sefton House Bridal, Limerick. While she tried on around 12 dresses altogether between a few shops, Sefton House was one of her first stops so she went back to Mary and chose a dress she had loved the first time. The bride accessorised the fabulous gown with her ‘something borrowed’, the veil her cousin Ruth had worn on her big day. Sarah also wore champagne coloured peep-toe shoes in the same style she had chosen for her bridesmaids. The bridesmaids wore Navy dresses from the Dessy New York collection at Kate’s Kloset, Askeaton. Kate was wonderful in helping the girls choose their dresses and the bride was delighted with them. All of the men were kitted out by Connolly Menswear, Limerick.

    Grace Moore designed and made the fabulous wedding cake and The Earl of Desmond Hotel provided a candy cart and a chocolate fountain. The bride also bought a personalised Ferrero Rocher stand and the guests devoured them. Sarah bought an Instax camera, as well as props to go with their guestbook so guests could leave a photo and a message for the newlyweds.

    Every Occasion Florist, Tralee provided the amazing floral arrangements and bouquets for the special day. Maeve Keavey Creations made all of the couple’s wedding stationary including their gorgeous invitations and their candles for the wedding.

    Catherine and Rachel from Catherine Hickey Makeup and Hair Studio travelled to the bride’s home to beautify her and the bridesmaids, “they were so amazing I had never had my makeup done so well, it lasted all day and looked amazing,” Sarah recalls.

    Leanne and Ger Quilligan from Newcastle West sang beautifully at the church for the wedding ceremony and after the meal in the evening Crystal Swing performed, followed by the brilliant DJ Martin Howard who had the guests up on their feet all night long. The bride and groom were transported on the day by PJ O’Riordan from Ardfert.

    Rose Baker of Baker Photography captured the couple’s special moments on camera.

    THE HONEYMOON
    The lovebirds waited until February to jet off to Dubai for one week on their honeymoon. They both work in retail and decided that a week in February would be the best time to relax after a hectic few months.

    TELL US ABOUT YOU EXPERIENCE AT THE EARL OF DESMOND HOTEL?
    “Fantastic, Norella the hotel’s wedding coordinator is brilliant at her job, her attention to detail and the day ran so smooth the meal was amazing everyone was full and thought it was fantastic and the hotel looked stunning. Norella would email and ring us with advice and when we needed to do things she was a great help with the wedding planning.”

    www.earlofdesmond.com


    HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH BAKER PHOTOGRAPHY?
    “Rose was very helpful from our first meeting, very professional and she made us feel at ease the whole way through our wedding planning and even gave us suggestions on suppliers when we were unsure.”

    www.bakerphotography.ie

    Make your wedding a gamer's paradise

    By Niamh Bartley

    GARDEN GAMES
    This would be perfect for an outdoor drinks reception. You could set up a huge checkers board or Jenga and your guests will be acting like children before they know it. These are great for making your day a bit goofy and fun, as opposed to following a strict schedule. Plus, you’ll get some great snapshots of your guests and you guys having fun in the sun (cliché, but great craic).

    PARTY GAMES
    I’m not suggesting you play ‘pin the tail on the donkey’ with 200 guests, but think back to the fun games you played as a child and recreate them as adults. Think along the lines of ‘musical chairs’ or even ‘pass the parcel’. The latter would be great for your guests to get to know each other as you would do it table by table and at least one person on the table gets a gift. These types of games are great for breaking the ice before everyone hits the dancefloor.

    MAD LIBS
    ‘My name is ____, I’ve known the couple for ___ years …’ This is a great one for getting guests at the table to bond as they ask each other questions and get to know each other better. This is also fun for those tables of old friends who haven’t seen each other in a while to get a laugh and reminisce about those times in school/college/work they shared with you or your hubby.

    SPIN THE WHEEL
    Have guests come up and spin a large wheel covered in dares, then have them do what they land on. These should be very innocent, like dance with someone you don’t know or give your date a kiss, it’s a bit of fun and it will keep the atmosphere light-hearted. It’s also sure to stop people taking themselves too seriously on a day where fun is supposed to be paramount.

    That precious father daughter moment

    by Niamh Bartley

    For many brides, choosing who will walk you down the aisle is a hugely important decision and, while tradition has evolved in recent times, fathers are still a prominent choice for a lot of lucky ladies.The tradition of a father walking his daughter down the aisle dates back to the less glamorous time of arranged marriages and fathers literally giving their daughters away. Today, the bride’s father walking her down the aisle symbolises his support of the marriage and that he has a great relationship with both his daughter and his future son-in-law. The bride can also use it as an opportunity to appreciate her dad for all he has done over the years and to thank him. Some modern couples choose to have both parents walk the bride down the aisle, or someone who has always been there for them in the case of their father’s absence. Brides of Limerick recently carried out a poll and 87% of brides are still walked down the aisle by their dad. 6% by their brothers and 7% by others (sons, friends, cousins, uncles).

    We asked some of our readers to submit what their father-daughter wedding moments meant to them.

    Sarah Doyle
    Sarah Doyle married Damian Daly in Cratloe Church, Clare and she was walked down the aisle by her dad, John Doyle, “It was such a special moment, I fought back the tears. I still get goosebumps every time I look at this photo and I know how lucky I am to have had my dad walk me up the aisle. Love you dad!”

    Amy Shelton
    Amy Shelton married Phil Ryan on June 22, 2013 in St. Senan’s Church, Clonlara. Her father shared some emotional moments with her while on the journey down the aisle, “Having my dad walk me down the aisle on my special day meant the absolute world to me; the very first man in my life giving me away to the most special and loving man in the world. Thank you dad!”

    Orlaith McGrath
    Orlaith McGrath and her husband David O’Doherty celebrated their wedding on June 11, 2016 at St. Joseph’s Church, Clarina. The bride chose to break tradition slightly by having both of her parents, Maria and Gerry McGrath, walk her down the aisle, “My dad walked me half way , then my mom joined us and both gave me away. It’s just as hard for the mom to give her little girl away and sometimes I feel the focus is taken from the moms. It meant the world to me to have the honour of both my mom and dad give me away and it’s something I will treasure for the rest of my life.”

    Tonya Meagher
    Tonya Meagher and John Hayes celebrated their wedding at Lakeside Hotel, Killaloe on June 26, 2015 and the bride was walked down the aisle by her grandfather, David Meagher, whom she considers a father. “My real dad wasn’t a part of my life and my granddad took over that role when I was born. He has always been the dad I needed throughout my life in every stage so to have the pleasure of him walking me down the aisle was magic, as in my eyes he has always been my dad and I wouldn’t have anyone else do this.”

    Marianne Lawlor
    Marianne Lawlor married her husband Leon on December 8, 2016 at the Castletroy Park Hotel and she was lucky enough to have her father, Thomas Lawlor walk her down the aisle. “My mother passed away 14 years ago and ever since then my father and I have become close. To have him walk me down the aisle on my wedding day meant so much to me as I felt like she was also walking beside me. It’s a memory I will treasure for the rest of my life.”

    Laura Zeimyte
    Laura Zeimyte married her husband Tadas Alekne on June 13, 2014 in a ceremony at Castleconnell church. Laura was walked down the aisle by her doting father, Gintaras Zeimys, “I’ve been very lucky to have my dad who walked me up the aisle. He’s the best father in the world, I’ve never ever seen him so worried as he was on the wedding day. To hold each other’s hands and to start walking through an aisle was just priceless.”

    Angela Keogh
    Angela Keogh married Charlie Ward at Ballykisteen Hotel & Golf Resort on October 28, 2016. Angela’s father Martin Keogh gave her away. “It meant the world to both of us. He was full sure he would never see the day that he would get to walk his youngest up the aisle.”

    Stacey O’Donnell
    Stacey O’Donnell married Ronan Kiely on August 27, 2016 at The Strand Hotel, Limerick. Her dad, Anthony O’Donnell, walked her down the aisle on her special day, “My father is my hero, he’s been there for me no matter what. He was my wedding planner for our wedding and it was amazing to see his face when I came down the stairs even though he had picked out my dress with me.”

    Tara Cremin
    Tara Cremin married Jason O’Carroll on June 3, 2016 at Ballygarry House Hotel, Tralee and was walked down the aisle by her dad, Michael Cremin, “of all the walks we have taken, this is my favourite.”

    Bridal speeching! Yay or nay?

    By Niamh Bartley

    A lot of modern brides are opting to make a speech on their wedding day. It can be a great addition to the wedding day, but we’ve put together a pro and con list to help you decide whether or not this modern trend could be for you. We love the idea but there are arguments both for and against so have a read and see what you think.

    FOR

    It can be touching
    Obviously, it’s lovely to hear from a bride when you go to their wedding, they have spent so long putting together this day and it’s nice for them to reach every guest at once.

    It saves time
    Some of your guests may feel scorned if you don’t talk to them personally, but if you have a wedding of 200 people it is impossible to have a lengthy conversation (or even share a few words) with every single person you invite. You’ll have great intentions of doing so, but you’ll be dragged away for photos and drinks and so many different things that you simply won’t have the time. Making a speech will make your guests and you feel better and it means you won’t have to worry as much about running around to everybody and you can enjoy your day that much more.

    AGAINST

    Additional speech time
    Wedding speeches are lovely and touching, but sometimes they do tend to drag on a bit long. If you’re making your speeches before the meal you’re in for a starving crowd of guests so be careful not to make your part too long. Additionally, if your speeches are after dinner your guests will want to go dancing and to the bar, not sit at the table for an extra hour than they need to.

    Danger of repetition
    Unless you have a way with words, your speech will probably consist of lots of ‘thank you’ and ‘we’re glad you could make it’, but your husband might have similar ideas and you could end up saying the same thing as each other, at least in part. This will most definitely bore your guests so try to coordinate your speech with his, without giving too much away, or else you could be in a bit of bother.    

    A dad's role in his daughter's day

    by Niamh Bartley

    There is no bond like a father-daughter bond for those who are lucky enough to share one. Our dads are our first loves, they’re the ones who have been around from the beginning to protect us, love us, support us and fight for us when we need it most. When we were in junior infants the teacher asked, ‘who is your hero?’ and when we got older it became ‘who inspires you?’, I don’t know about you, but my answer is and always has been ‘my daddy’ and a lot of people would have answered the same, even though in juniors I might’ve confidently scribbled ‘Barney the Dinosaur’ to the best of my ability.

    Anyone with a father or father-figure like that will definitely want him to be part of their wedding day if it’s even remotely possible and there are so many different things he can help with from planning to being there on the day itself. Everyone knows the role of the father of the bride on the big day, and there are different traditions in every culture that incorporate the bride’s dad, the most common being the walk down the aisle. This is still a huge tradition in a lot of countries and cultures across the globe. If your father walks you down the aisle it symbolises the strength of your relationship with each other, as well as the love and support he has for you and your other half in one of the biggest moments of your life.

    Another big part he’ll play in most weddings is making a speech or toast. Let’s face it, he’ll tell embarrassing stories, make silly jokes and basically take the mick out of you if he’s an Irish dad, but he’ll also bring up some wonderful memories you have shared and tell you how he supports and loves you in this chapter of your life. There almost certainly will be tears and hugs all round but it might even bring you guys closer when he says this all out loud in front of all of your guests.

    Basically, your dad’s role on your wedding day is a reflection of what his role has been in your life thus far, he’ll be there to support you, make sure you’re happy and dry a few tears along the way. He’ll make you laugh, make you cry and make you sad that you’re no longer his ‘little girl’, but don’t fret about that because to him you’ll always be his baby. Your wedding day is not just about starting a new chapter with a new man, it is also a ceremonious way of saying goodbye to the man who has been there for you since day one. Whether you moved away from him twenty years ago or twenty months ago, it’s a big deal, so try to make the most of it and include him as much as you can on this momentous occasion.

    A twenty year wait made for the wedding of their dreams

    Diane Duggan & Denis Corbett

    August 12, 2016 - Monagea Church & The Listowel Arms Hotel

    Photographs courtesy of ATL Photography

    Diane Duggan and Denis Corbett waited twenty years before tying the knot surrounded by their friends and family, including their daughter Katie and son Sean, in the fabulous Monagea Church. Their lavish reception was held in the stunning Listowel Arms Hotel on August 12, 2016. 

    Diane’s beautiful bridesmaids were Anna Duggan, Martina O’Donnell and Mary Ita Hough. Ger Corbett, Noel Corbett and Ger Corkery were Denis’ handsome groomsmen. 

    The bride wore a fabulous Tamem Michael Creation, she had her makeup done by the talented Niamh O’Dwyer and her hair taken care of by the wonderful Alley Cuts. 

    The happy couple had Celina’s Cakes provide the delicious wedding cake and were transported on the day by Horan’s Cars Tralee. ATL Photography caught the day on camera while Kevin Daly Videography was in the background filming everything so the bride and groom missed nothing. They also had an LED love sign and a photobooth at the venue to make it a wedding day to remember for all of their guests. 

    Diane and Denis shared their first dance as a married couple to Shania Twain’s ‘You’re Still The One’, which they chose because it signified the big step they were taking after their 20 year engagement. 

    The couple’s joint favourite memories are ‘having our daughter Katie and son Sean as part of our big day and our first dance with all our family and friends dancing with us,’ they echoed. 

    For their honeymoon, the newlyweds took a well-deserved Mediterranean Cruise after the madness of the big day had settled down. 

    HOW WAS IT WORKING WITH THE LISTOWEL ARMS HOTEL?
    “From our first meeting with Patrice and on seeing the venue it was clear that The Listowel Arms was the place we wanted to celebrate our big day. Patrice’s professionalism and attention to detail was second to none. She went above and beyond to make our day perfect and nothing was too much trouble. The team were amazing on the night and the food as always was exceptional. The reception room looked beautiful with candelabras and flowers and was decorated exactly how we had hoped for. Family and friends commented on the venue, food, staff and overall atmosphere in the Listowel Arms being one of the best weddings they had attended.” 

    www.listowelarms.com

    Noel's Menswear Limerick celebrating 40 years in business

    By Niamh Bartley

    Noel’s Menswear Limerick has been in the business of providing men’s wedding attire for 40 years. Having opened under the stewardship of Noel Long in 1977, the family-run business has now expanded to three extremely successful stores, two in Limerick city, one on Bedford Row and their flagship store on Wickham Street as well as one store in Newcastle West. The aim of this business is to provide high quality menswear while maintaining the exceptional customer service they are known for and this aim has most certainly been met by the dedicated team at Noel’s.

    More recently Noel’s Menswear has become extremely popular in wedding circles. Grooms are beginning to purchase their wedding attire more and more and Noel’s has a range of quality suits to suit all wedding styles. 

    The selection of suits at Noel’s Menswear is second to none with a wide variety of brands available. This is coupled with the fact that they have their own skilled tailor available in house for alteration services and fittings which makes the whole process much easier on the customer. 

    Although their high quality suits are available in all three stores, their newest location on Bedford Row, has a whole top floor dedicated to the purchasing of suits. And their private dressing rooms on this floor makes for a seamless shopping experience for any groom. 

    So is buying your suit going to cost you an arm and a leg? On the contrary, their three-piece suits, available in a range of colours, starts at an amazing low cost of €199. This price includes a suit, and also a shirt and tie. On average, each groom would spend anywhere between €250 and €300 on his wedding suit, according to Garry, Noel’s son who has worked in the family business for many years. 

    No request is too small for the attentive team at Noel’s Menswear, they even have two styles of suit available that range from tots to adult sizes, not to mention tonnes of other choices for the smallies in your wedding party. 

    ADVICE 
    Garry suggests that “the bride and groom come in together to have a look at some choices and colours and to choose some options that could suit the groomsmen. As well as this, it’s good to see what different suit combinations will suit the groom best, he could wear a different colour waistcoat to his jacket, for example.”


    The Bedford Row store is open every day of the week, Monday to Saturday from 9.30am until 6pm and Sunday from 12pm to 5pm and you don’t have to have an appointment for your first visit but of course they will also take appointments as requested. The team at Noel’s will make sure everyone is completely happy with style, fit and the overall look before you leave with the suits. 

    www.noels.ie
     

    Spring has sprung!

    by Niamh Bartley

    A wedding in the spring sound like it could be amazing, so why not make the dream a reality? There are so many ways you can make this season your own and add a flourish to your wedding like no other! I’ve put together my top picks for throwing the best and most unique spring wedding you can imagine.

    Garden tea party
    This can be a fabulous way of having part of your day outdoors, if your venue has nice gardens you could have your drinks reception on the lawn and it would look fabulous. Another great benefit to this is that they probably have an indoor area where you could be moved if the weather doesn’t go along with your plan.

    Light cocktails
    In spring we’re just coming out of a mulled wine coma, so you might as well make a refreshing light cocktail part of your day. Do you have a favourite cocktail as a couple? Or perhaps you can concoct a signature cocktail for your big day.

    Décor
    Go mad with flowers and pastels in every part of your décor. We love the use of fresh flowers and colourful bunting all around your venue, it will transform it into a spring paradise. You could also put the pastels to use when it comes to bridal party wear and your nearest and dearest will look stunning beside you.

    Eggs
    This can work especially well if your wedding is close to Easter, provide chocolate eggs as favours or fill a vase with dyed eggs and flowers for centrepieces. It might sound odd but it does look fab, plus eggs are a symbol of new life which is a great thing to have as part of your day when you’re starting a new chapter of your life with the person you love.

    Love at first sight for Ciara and Eoin

    Ciara Penny & Eoin 

    June 10, 2016 - Woodlands Hotel, Adare

    Photographs courtesy of Magnificent Moments Photography

    Cappamore native Eoin McCarthy met the love of his life, crèche and childcare assistant Ciara Penny when they were just 16 years old. It was love at first sight for the pair who met in 2002. They now live together in Murroe with their five year old son, Cillian. The lovebirds got engaged in October 2014 and chose Ciara’s engagement ring in Matthew Stephen’s Jewellers, Limerick.

    The happy couple set the wedding date as June 10, 2016 and celebrated their wedding at Murroe Church followed by a fabulous reception at Fitzgeralds Woodlands Hotel Adare with 143 of their closest friends and family.

    THE HEN PARTY
    The bride, her mother-in-law and her bridesmaids went to Galway for a night of pampering, starting with makeovers which were followed by dinner along with a few little surprises for the hen herself, the most memorable of which was the Blacktie magician that was hired for the girls. Ciara then had a separate hen night in Limerick with her work friends, close friends and family members.

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    The bride stunned in a gown from The Bridal Emporium, Miltown Malbay, which she chose after trying on around ten dresses in the boutique. She accessorised the dress with her sister in law’s veil, Ciara’s ‘something borrowed’, and she wore shoes she had bought for her 30th birthday so she would be comfortable for the full day.

    Patricia Irwin of Ring O’Roses designed and put together the floral arrangements and Orla of Limelight Wedding Stationery designed and created the fabulous invites for the couple. Ciara bought the candles in Parkway Shopping Centre instead of having them made, which saved her a lot of money. The bride had her beauty needs taken care of by Cerise Beauty Newport, she had her nails and tan done before the big day and Leslie came out from the salon to Ciara’s house to beautify her and the bridesmaids on the morning of the wedding. HC2 in Annacotty took care of the girls’ hair.

    Debbie Carroll performed at the church, Ciara and Eoin had heard her at their friend’s wedding and were blown away by her talent so they booked her straight away, she even performed some new songs which she became familiar with on short notice. The band Traffic had everybody up on the dancefloor well into the night and the guests loved them. The bride and groom were transported on the day in a friend’s BMW 640 Grand Coupe.

    SPECIAL MOMENTS
    The newlyweds shared their first dance as a married couple to a slow version of Oceanlab’s dance hit ‘Satellite’ as they are both big fans of dance music.

    Orla from Limelight Designs who made the couple’s invites also made a ‘Groom Survival Kit’ card for Eoin, Ciara filled up the kit with a snickers bar, vodka, socks, 7up, a pocket-watch and some mints.

    The bride had colouring books and crayons on the kid’s table and they had Tayto Sandwiches available for after the DJ finished up. As wedding favours, they put a coin and a €1 scratchcard on each setting.

    THE NEXT DAY
    Ciara and Eoin took it easy the next day by inviting a few guests over to their house for a Chinese Buffet and drinks, “everyone was so tired from the wedding it was a good thing we didn’t have anything big,” Ciara remembered.

    ADVICE
    “Don’t take too much input from people; it’s your wedding no one elses. Do what you think is right, you can’t please everyone. Don’t cut back on things, it’s the little things that people will remember at the end of the day! The day goes way too fast so take five minutes to sit and just look at everyone and think that this is your special day and enjoy every minute of it.”

    HOW WAS WORKING WITH MAGNIFICENT MOMENTS PHOTOGRAPHY?
    “Diarmuid and David were brilliant to work with from start to finish, we couldn’t have asked for more amazing photographers on the day, so happy with every picture taken. We were so at ease all day long from start to finish. We had different photos in mind so they went out of their way to accommodate our wishes. Two very down to earth men and we couldn’t have picked anyone else for the job! They provided us with amazing photographs.”

    www.magnificentmoments.net

    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE AT THE WOODLANDS HOUSE HOTEL?
    “Our wedding venue was the Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel in Adare, it was the only venue that Eoin and myself agreed on! Everything about the hotel is fabulous and we dealt with David, whenever we needed him he was always there to answer any questions we had and all the staff are so nice.”

    www.woodlands-hotel.ie


    Plan your wedding in 3 months flat

    by Niamh Bartley 

    Week 1 -
    The nitty gritty bits

    Basically, you’ll want to decide what your budget is and pick your date this week. Also, you should have a look at venues and try to nail one down, depending on the time of year you might have trouble getting a weekend date but midweek weddings are fab and sometimes cheaper. Another thing to do this week (if you haven’t already) is to register your marriage with the state, this needs to be done at least three months before your wedding date so make sure you do it now.

    Week 2 - Vendors
    This is a big one so it’s important to get as many of your vendors (florist, photographer, band etc.) locked in as early in the planning process as possible, you may have your eye on a photographer or band so try to set up meetings with them and see if they can do your date. Also, try to enlist as many friends and family as possible to help DIY your day up a bit.

    Week 3 - Assemble the wedding party
    It’s important to ask your best guys and gals whether or not they want to be in your wedding early on, just in case someone doesn’t. Try to find out the style of bridesmaids dresses your girls will want as well just to save time later on and give them and you a little bit of time to think about it.

    Week 4 - Find your officiant
    If you’re having a church ceremony try to find out what local church is free to celebrate your wedding on your date and if you’re not having your ceremony in a church, there are plenty of companies that will provide you with a qualified officiant. 

    Week 5 - The Dress
    This is obviously a very important detail when planning your big day, you might have an exact idea of what you want or you might not have a clue. Either way, make some appointments with bridal shops and try to have your dress chosen by the end of this week as if alterations are needed, they can take a few weeks or even months. Also, make sure your groom has his suit chosen as well as those for his groomsmen. You’ll possibly need to buy a sample dress so please remember that when trying on dresses. 

    Week 6 - The cake and flowers
    At this stage, you should have your colour scheme chosen so have a few cake tastings and design meetings to see what your cake will look like on the day. Meet up with your florist and go through exactly what you’re looking for with them as well. Check in with all other vendors that will be providing goods on your day that everything is on track with them.

    Week 7 - Invite your guests
    Send out your invites and set a date for RSVPs so you can start putting together your guest list and table plan and notify your venue of how many guests you are expecting.

    Week 8 - Do it yourself
    Have a girly night in with your bridesmaids and close friends and set up a DIY craft station for the night. Crack open a few bottles of wine and have a bit of fun making fun decorations or putting together bits and pieces for your special day.

    Week 9 - Hair and makeup trials
    Trying out your hair and makeup at this stage still gives you about a month to get everything right so you can look great on your big day. You should also be weary of changing anything else in your beauty routine from now until the big day, just in case you have a bad reaction to a product and don’t have time to recover. 

    Week 10 - Finalise everything
    This mainly applies to your stationery i.e. menus, ceremony programmes and anything else you’re having printed for the day. Also, double check that your DJ has your playlist and your band knows every song you want them to play. Talk to the manager at your venue and find out what information they will need coming up to the wedding.

    Week 11 - Guest list and table plan
    Put together your guest list and contact anybody who hasn’t RSVP’d yet and find out where they stand. Make out your table plan based on the guest list, this could take a couple of days (depending on numbers) so clear your schedule as much as possible. Give your table plan and final numbers to your venue so they can set up for the day.

    Week 12 - Take a breath
    Ok, this might be a bit unrealistic for some brides, but you shouldn’t be stressed the week coming up to your wedding. Enjoy your final week of unwedded bliss and have a killer hen night to celebrate with your gals. Also, spend some time with your fiancé so you can relax together after an insane few weeks of planning and soak up the excitement of this week. 


    A local love story for Tina and Edmond

    TINA BUCKLEY & EDMOND O’BRIEN

    November 4, 2016 - Ballyroe Heights Hotel

    Photographs courtesy of Feehan's Fotos

    Veterinary nurse Tina Buckley won Edmond O’Brien over in a game of 45 in the local pub. They both hail from Liscarroll so it was only a matter of time before these two lovebirds began their journey together.

    Ever the romantic, Edmond planned the perfect Christmas morning proposal in 2014 and delightedly Tina said yes. She was watching an episode of Mr. Bean, one where his girlfriend wanted an engagement ring but he didn’t get the hint, and Edmond was in the kitchen making tea when he asked her to call their dog, Indie. Indie wasn’t a happy pup with a jewellery bag hanging off her collar, but that made the moment all the funnier and Tina didn’t suspect it could be an engagement ring at all “I just thought it was Edmond being Edmond, trying to be romantic with a pair of earrings or something”, Tina added. It was a magical moment and one they will never forget.

    The couple celebrated their wedding at St. Joseph’s Church, Liscarroll followed by a reception in Ballyroe Heights Hotel, Tralee with their 147 guests.

    THE HEN PARTY
    The bride was whisked away to Galway City for a stay in Flannery’s Hotel. While they were there they visited Coyotes Bar in the city centre and went crazy. The girls also had a scavenger hunt, “although we’re still not sure who won,” Tina laughed. The bride’s sister made up some gorgeous goodie bags for everyone and she made a memory book for Tina with all the girls having put in a photo and a comment, “my sister was like Frances Brennan going around with her folder all day,” she added.

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    The beautiful bride was accompanied by her gorgeous bridesmaids, Angela Buckley Breen and Colette O’Sullivan, while the handsome groom was flanked by his dapper brothers, Emmet and Donal O’Brien.  Edmond’s goddaughter Tara O’Brien and Tina’s godson Elliott Breen were the super adorable flowergirl and pageboy.

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    Tina bought her gorgeous Mori Lee bridal gown in Wedding World, Galway after trying on five different dresses. The bride accessorised the dress with her cousin’s veil and a pair of Alessia Ivory by Rainbow Couture shoes which she bought online from John Lewis. Esquire provided the suits for the gentlemen on the day.

    O’Carrolls Cakes provided the stunning and delicious cupcakes for the wedding day as well as the top tier of chocolate biscuit cake.  The couple used Munster Photobooth which was excellent. “everyone loved and used it,” Tina said. The bride and groom had a Ferrero Rocher stand at the
    reception along with a post box for the guests to leave the wedding cards, these were both gotten from the Wedding Prop Shop in Templeglantine, Limerick. A close friend of the bride who is also a retired florist gifted her florist services to the couple. Tailor Made Wedding Stationary, Ennis created and designed the couple’s invites. “Everyone says our invites were very different and funny because they were myself and Edmond and they also included our dog, Indie,” the bride added.

    Marie’s Beauty Salon took care of the bride’s pre-wedding beauty preparations, Marie Fitzgerald did Tina and her bridesmaid’s makeup on the day and Donna Fisher of Stylz hair salon gave the girls enviable locks.

    The phenomenal Kerry Jane Hurley sang throughout the ceremony. Wallstreet band got everyone in the party mood by performing at the beginning of the night, followed by the amazing DJ Mossie Richardson. A family friend drove the bride to the church in his Mercedes and had personalised number plates made for the day. Eileen Feehan of Feehan’s Fotos, Newmarket, captured their day beautifully.

    SPECIAL TOUCHES
    Tina and Edmond decided to switch up the tradition of giving their mothers flowers during the speeches by having pictures printed and framed on the day to give to them instead. “Instead of giving flowers to the mothers during the speeches we had a friend of ours take a picture of myself, Edmond and our dog on the day and they got them printed out and put them into glass frames that we had bought beforehand. So they officially had the first wedding picture of us and they loved them,” Tina recalled.

    THE NEXT DAY
    The next day Tina and Edmond relaxed in wedded bliss at home with Indie, their beloved dog, and then they celebrated with a party in their local pub, The Old Walls, before heading off on their honeymoon.

    THE HONEYMOON
    The newlyweds jetted off to sunny Australia for four weeks which they booked through ACE Travel in Newcastle West.

    ADVICE
    Tina has given some bride-to-bride advice for all you lucky brides-to-be, “have an open mind when it comes to trying on dresses, you will be surprised what suits you.”

    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE AT BALLYROE HEIGHTS HOTEL
    “Ballyroe Heights Hotel. There is one word I can use is “exceptional”. The staff and management at this hotel are amazing; Patrick, Mike and Jonathan could not do enough for us leading up to and on our big day. From start to finish, they were so professional and kept us so at ease. Our wedding guests were in high praise about the hotel from the location, staff, atmosphere, food, accommodation even down to the beverages being spot on. I could not recommend this hotel enough they made our day a ten out of ten and it says a lot when everyone is still talking about it to this day.” 

    www.ballyroe.com

    RANDOMERS
    First holiday together? Tenerife  
    Fav TV show to watch together? ‘Top Gear’
    Funniest moment during the wedding? The groom and best man broke the safe in the bridal suite twice trying to lock it. 
    Which guest(s) travelled the farthest for the wedding? My two uncles Donie and Pat and my aunt Katie from the UK.
    Whom did you tell you were engaged first? Our parents
    One thing you would change about your day? Not a thing.
    Which part was the biggest blur? Walking down the aisle.
    What is the one song you can remember dancing to with your friends on the floor? “Oh Lisdoonvarna” by Christy Moore. I will never forget it. On my hen party we went to Galway and the festival was on in Lisdoonvarna and my friend Martha kept singing it going up and coming home on the bus. She would ring our rooms and just start singing the song down the phone. Once the DJ played the song all the women on the hen party ran onto the dance floor.
    Any hiccups: Not that anyone told me.
    Song you walked up the aisle to? ‘This I promise you’ by Ronan Keating
    Song you walked down the aisle to? ‘Over the Rainbow’- Glee version.

    Types of guest to expect at your wedding

    by Niamh Bartley

    No matter what type of wedding you have, you’ll definitely encounter some of these on your wedding day. Don’t fret though, they can all be dealt with in their own way and (hopefully) not by you personally.

    THE PARTY ANIMAL
    The life and soul of the party, sure to be the first on the dancefloor and the last off it. They’ll be grabbing your guests left right and centre to have a dance so try to throw your bridesmaids in first before you go for a dance with your gals or else you’ll be grabbed more than once for a quick jig. This guest is great craic but a little bit overzealous so try to steer clear for a while and hope they calm down before the end of the night.

    THE RANDOM
    You, your husband, your bridesmaids and most of your guests have no idea who this person is. They could be the other half of a work colleague, or a randomer in off the street. Either way, just give them a generic ‘thanks for coming’ if you are in an awkward situation and hope that they know somebody there.

    THE DRUNK
    We all know this guest, the lady who’s boyfriend keeps buying her drinks or the gent who seems to have a bottomless wallet. They’ll be drunk by the time the main course arrives but hopefully they can sober up somewhere between then and the band coming on. If you think you know who this is likely to be, sit them near light drinkers and hope that they rub off on this guest. Nobody wants to be the only drunk one at a table.

    THE NEWLY SINGLE ONE
    Chances are, this guest will be in tears before the end of the night. They were planning on coming to your wedding with their boyfriend/girlfriend but their relationship came to an end shortly before the big day and so they had to go solo. Introduce them to the emotional one and they can comfort each other with no help from you or your husband.

    THE BABYSITTER
    All of your junior guests will adore this person, be it your best man, bridesmaid, or best friend, they are amazing with kids and they love keeping them entertained. This guest will save you a lot of trouble trying to figure out what to do with the kids and they’ll be the life of the mini party. They’ll also allow the parents to relax and know there is someone keeping the kids happy throughout the evening.

    THE HAPPY-SAD ONE
    This guest will ball his/her eyes out at the ceremony and during the speeches and they’ll be heard saying things like ‘it’s just so beautiful’ and ‘good for them’, but throughout the day their emotions may get the better of them and they’ll be wondering why they’re not married or they’ll get jealous and sad that this isn’t their wedding day. Take no heed of their tears and assign a bridesmaid to find out why they are upset. It’s probably nothing to do with you or your husband, so don’t take it personally.

    Noreen O'Brien and Ross Phibbs

    Photographs courtesy of Baker Photography

    The details
    SUITS Esquire Limerick
    HAIR Hair Design Newport
    MAKE UP Lesley Ryan, Cerise Beauty Newport
    FLOWERS Ring O’Roses
    VIDEOGRAPHER PVP Digital
    BAND Escapade 

    Noreen’s favourite memories and special moments are, “Being blessed with the glorious sunshine on our wedding day, it was a scorcher! The beauty of Murroe church with the doors opened, the flowers and red carpet were stunning and further adding to it was the amazing performance and music from the Limerick Gospel Choir. We were further blessed with obtaining permission to have our photos taken on the spectacular grounds of Glenstal Abbey where I have wonderful childhood memories.” 

    “At the venue, we had an outdoor drinks reception with the bubbles and beers in the scorching sun, with the talented David from Limerick Gospel Choir further performing for us. We had a world map table plan depicting our world travelling adventure, a caricature of us in Dublin and Limerick colours, and our amazing wedding cake further dictated our sporting theme and our ten year love story.  Our favours were something very close to our hearts; a donation to Pieta House in memory of our brother in law.” 

    Noreen O’Brien married her best friend and true love, Ross Phibbs, on August 26, 2016 at Murroe church followed by a lavish reception at the stunning Woodlands Hotel Adare shared with 200 of their closest friends and family.

    Keep your guests happy

    by Niamh Bartley

    This may seem like an obvious thing to do, but you’d be surprised how a few small changes or disruptions can annoy your guests during your special day. They might not mention it to you, but if they’re not having a good time you’ll feel it which is certainly not what you want. There are a few things you can do to ensure your guests will have a great time all day long, it might be wise to implement some of these.

    Plan ahead
    Give your guests plenty of notice before your big day, especially if it’s an out of town wedding. As well as that, plan for the worst case scenario in some wedding situations, just to be prepared. You won’t want to think about anything going wrong on your special day, but it doesn’t hurt to have a backup plan if the band goes to the wrong venue, or the cake your aunt made you looks like something out of a horror story. By doing all of this planning, your guests will probably never even notice what, to you, was a major mess up.

    Short and sweet speeches
    We all love wedding speeches, they are funny, emotional and really touching. On the other hand, speeches that drag on are sure to annoy your guests which you definitely don’t want. You could get caught up in the speeches and never want them to end, they are one of the best parts of the day, just be careful that they aren’t going to run for hours and that your guests will stay interested throughout.

    Transport is key
    This does go without saying, but if your ceremony is being held a distance from your venue you should organise a safe and reliable way to get your guests between the two. There are plenty of cheap and great bus companies that can help with this and you can relax on the day knowing all will make it to the reception. Another vital thing to do is provide taxi numbers for your guests for the end of the night. If you’re having a hotel reception, the night manager might be able to call your guests a cab, but making taxi numbers readily available would be a good move to make, and you can rest assured that all of your guests got home or to their accommodation safe and sound.

    Run on time
    It can be cute when the bride is ‘fashionably late’, it’s expected that you’ll arrive a few minutes after everyone else, but when the bride comes in half an hour later it’s not as fun for guests as you might think. Keep a schedule and try not to go too far over that, obviously, there will be one or two times throughout the day when you’ll be busy and the schedule will go out the window, just try your best to stick to it. The best thing to do would be give yourself extra time for each part of the day, and (hopefully) by the meal you’ll be ahead of your plan and you’ll have extra time to boogie.

    A beach proposal led to the wedding of their dreams

    Elizabeth Sheehan & Eric Rees

    September 9, 2016 - Shanaglish Church & The Inn at Dromoland

    Photographs courtesy of Paul Corey Photography

    Elizabeth Sheehan, a hotel receptionist from Gort in Galway, met her now husband Eric, a truck-driver from Kilnaboy in Clare, while they were both out celebrating St. Stephen’s Night in 2008. Eric’s romantic proposal came about on a beach in Connemara in August 2015 and of course Elizabeth said yes! 

    The happy couple chose to celebrate their wedding on September 9, 2016 with a ceremony at Shanaglish Church followed by a lavish reception at The Inn at Dromoland with 250 guests. 

    THE HEN PARTY
    The bride enjoyed an ultra-relaxing spa day in Limerick at The Radisson Blu Hotel with her girlfriends. The day was topped off with an amazing dinner and some drinks at The George Boutique Hotel. 

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    Elizabeth was led up the aisle by the gorgeous Elaine Boyce, Denise Fitzgibbon and Elaine Rees while Eric was accompanied by his dapper groomsmen Brendan Rees, John Rees and Michael Geaghan. Sophie Boyce, Kayla Boyce and Mia Fitzgibbon, Elizabeth’s nieces, were adorable as flowergirls on the big day. 

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    The bride chose her stunning Mori Lee wedding gown in Virginia’s Bridal, Limerick and a veil also bought there. 

    The bride’s sister made the scrumptious wedding cake and the Inn at Dromoland provided a sweet cart at the reception. A family friend took care of the wedding flowers while Tailor Made Office Supplies, Ennis designed and created the wonderful invitations. 

    Mary in Chez Lee, Gort looked after the bride’s beauty before the big day including her nails and false tan. Denise Keane and Louise Byrne took care of all things hair on the morning of the wedding and did an excellent job while Linda Carey of Radiance Beauty Clinic, Quin, did the girls’ makeup on the big day.   

    Irish Diamond Limousines provided transport for the couple and the bridal party. Paul Corey Photography caught the newlyweds special moments on camera while videographer Paschal Brooks filmed the whole day so Elizabeth and Eric wouldn’t miss a thing. 

    SPECIAL TOUCHES
    Louise from Grace Events prepared and looked after hotel décor for the wedding day keeping with the country theme the bride and groom wanted. These included silver lanterns lining the hallway to the function room, a fairy light archway and the out of this world centrepieces. 

    They also had chalkboard table numbers, chair covers with ivory sashes and there were fairy lights on the windows in the dining room and floral teacups adorned the tables in the lobby, the place looked stunning for the reception. 

    The guests were greeted on arrival in the hotel lobby with drinks, tea and coffee served in china tea sets, canapes and finger sandwiches. Elizabeth booked John Frawley ‘The Singing Chef’ as a surprise for Eric and the guests, “John was fantastic, he had all of our guests up singing and clapping along to his songs and he certainly got everyone in the mood for partying,” she remembers. 

    THE HONEYMOON
    The newlyweds jetted off to Dubai for a week on their honeymoon and they booked everything themselves. 

    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE AT THE INN AT DROMOLAND?
    “The Inn at Dromoland was amazing!  We could not have been happier with our choice of venue. The wedding coordinator, Claire was an absolute pleasure to deal with and made the planning process so easy for us. She was always at hand with helpful suggestions and recommendations of suppliers. Everything went perfectly for us. From the moment we arrived at the hotel we were made to feel so welcome. The Banqueting room looking absolutely magical. The décor and attention to detail by the hotel was outstanding. All of our guests were so impressed with the scrumptious food and the fantastic service they received, they were served without delay and there was plenty of everything. The staff at The Inn at Dromoland really outdid themselves, they were all so courteous and friendly and nothing was too much trouble.” 

    www.theinnatdromoland.ie


    Something old, something new, borrowed and blue

    by Niamh Bartley

    There are thousands of ways to interpret this rhyming couplet when it comes to your wedding, but where did it all start? When did superstition become tradition, and why? We’ve done a bit of research and come up with some answers and some possible ways to include these ‘crucial’ elements in your big day!

    Something old
    There is definitely a sentimentality when it comes to carrying something old with you on your big day, no matter what the tradition is. Supposedly, a bride would carry something old to protect any children she and her husband may have in the future, but for a lot of brides it can be seen as a representation of continuity. Usually the ‘something old’ would have been in you or your husband’s family, like your granny’s wedding jewellery or your mom’s veil. 

    How to include it: You could double up the tradition and use the same item as your ‘something old’ and ‘something borrowed’ by borrowing your granny’s favourite earrings from her. A lot of brides use items with sentimental value, and your ‘something old’ doesn’t have to be worn, you could use the same cake knife or topper as your parents did, for example.

    Something new
    This bit is fairly straightforward, ‘something new’ represents optimism and is symbolic of the new chapter in your life you and your husband are entering into. Many times this comes in the form of a gift from someone close to you, maybe even the groom, or else the bride buys herself something. It can be anything to do with your day that’s new, maybe even your new husband, but why pass up the opportunity to buy yourself something, right?

    How to include it: The options are endless, new jewellery, new perfume, even your wedding dress is probably new. Jewellery is probably the most popular of all when it comes to your ‘something new’, but don’t be held back by norms, go with what you like.

    Something borrowed
    In olden times, a bride’s ‘something borrowed’ symbolised borrowed happiness, a bride would borrow something from another happily married lady in her life, like a mother, friend or sister. This happiness would then come upon her marriage. While this is a lovely sentiment, if you want to borrow something from a friend who’s not yet married, go for it. It’s not going to set you up for a life of disaster.

    How to include it: Borrow anything at all. That advice is a bit empty-handed, but if your friend, sister, aunt, uncle or pet has something you would like to borrow and include in your big day, then ask them for a loan. They’ll probably be delighted you thought of them. Many brides borrow veils from family members which is an adorable idea, and, as I mentioned above, you could always integrate borrowed & old to make it a little less cumbersome and a lot more meaningful a tradition.

    Something blue
    This stems from a tradition of women wearing whatever colour they wanted to on their wedding day, and blue was the top pick. Wearing white has only become popular in recent times (about 200 years ago), and blue meant purity and fidelity so was an obvious choice for brides back then. Brides still incorporate it today because it represents love and purity which is a lovely sentiment to carry around on your wedding day.

    How to include it: A very popular thing to do is have something, like your wedding date, embroidered on the inside of your wedding dress in blue thread. You could also opt for some lovely blue flowers in your bouquet or some blue jewellery.

    Evelyn Lawless and Kevin Murphy

    Photographs courtesy of Pawel Bebenca Photography 

    The details
    FLOWERS Lawless Flowers
    CAKE Confetti Cakes
    BAND Trees Fall Down
    CARS Michael O’Flaherty at www.bentleywedding.com
    WEDDING THEME Midsummer-ish

    Kevin’s family did the music for the church. The bride and her friends modified the dress design to include detailing on the left shoulder (originally from headpiece) and an open back. Evelyn’s family did the flowers. Michael who drove the bride to the church blasted out a few tunes on the harmonica to soothe the nerves!

    Evelyn’s favourite memory is her first dance to Nina Simone’s ‘My Baby Just Cares For Me’ “We didn’t go out of our way to be different. In simple terms, it was a great party with family and friends. A traditional wedding with all the trimmings.”

    Evelyn Lawless and Kevin Murphy tied the knot on June 17, 2016 in a fabulous ceremony which took place at St. John’s Church, Cratloe swiftly followed by a lavish reception at the wonderful Dunraven Arms Hotel, Adare.

    How to choose the colour scheme for you

    By Niamh Bartley

    So much thought goes into your wedding day as a whole, but one of the first things you need to do is determine your colour scheme. There are so many out there, but what will suit your day and make it personal? Think about some of these questions and you should have a clearer idea of what theme is for you.

    Where are you getting married?
    This is obviously something to factor into your colour choice. Have a think about your venue, what colours will suit it best? Ask the wedding co-ordinator what they’ve seen in the past and what has worked well in the room and then go from there. If it’s a dark room, choose deep colours or else you could end up spending a lot more on décor than you think trying to brighten up the room to fit with a lighter scheme.

    Your dress
    What does your dress look like? What colour is it? – White, off white, does it have gold or pink undertones? You want your wedding to look photogenic and fabulous so if you coordinate your wedding colours with your dress it’s sure to be fabulous. The style of dress should also be a factor in your choice, an ethereal or princess-like dress would look fabulous in a sparkly fairytale wedding, and a tee length dress would be gorgeous for an outdoor light and bright wedding.

    Seasonal trends
    While picking your favourite colours is important, thinking seasonally can push your wedding over the edge and make it stunning. Try to incorporate nature and fit your season into your décor, think blue in winter, green in spring etc. You can use what grows naturally at the time of year of your wedding in your décor to make it even more seasonal and fab. 

    What's your favourite colour?
    Choosing colours you actually like and want to include in your wedding day is so important, people will know if you’re uncomfortable with the colour scheme and if the colours don’t suit you or what you normally like. Don’t choose your colours based on ‘normal’ wedding colours, you want your guests to see how your day reflects you and your fiancé and see that you had fun planning it.


    Elizabeth Kelly and Padraic Nicholas

    Photographs courtesy of Micheál O'Sullivan Photography

    The details
    FLOWERS The Flower Gallery
    CAKE The bride’s sister
    CEREMONY MUSIC Trevor Sexton & Sabrina Hurley
    INVITES Frank McNamara & Ralph McMahon
    THEME Rustic vintage & soft floral romance  

    “I designed the decorative jam jars myself and my sister brought flowers from her neighbour’s garden to use as decorations not only at the pew ends but also to decorate the dinner tables. We used the same marriage coins as my parents used when they were getting married in 1975 and we also got married on the same day my grandparents were married!”

    “My dad handmade the wedding signs, candy cart and the old school postbox from scratch! We used a pallet with fairy lights and photos of us as a reception decoration! My aunt hand sewed the ring pillow using antique Irish lace.”


    Elizabeth Kelly married Pádraic Nicholas on September 30, 2016 in a beautiful ceremony at the Church of the Visitation, Monagea followed by a reception at The Dunraven Arms Hotel, Adare.

    Keep the romance alive

    By Niamh Bartley

    Planning a wedding can be very stressful, but it’s important not to let your relationship take a backseat while you’re doing it. We have put together some great date ideas for newlywed couples to keep the romance alive after the big day is over.

    Learn something new
    Nothing brings two people closer than a joint hobby, especially one that they learned together. Take a cookery class or pick up a musical instrument together. It can be fun seeing what strengths you both have that you didn’t know about and it can bring about some healthy competition for the competitive couple.

    Read your guestbook
    This one is pretty simple, have a quiet evening in together, maybe play some romantic music, crack open a bottle of wine and set yourselves down on the couch to go through your guestbook page by page. You’ll get a good laugh out of all the funny remarks and comments left by your guests and you might even pick up one or two pieces of advice from those married longer than you have been. This is a great way to connect and reminisce with your new husband about everyone who came, all the craic that was had and basically everything that happened on the day of your wedding.

    Bring it all back
    Where did it all begin? Bring your love back to the scene of the crime, where you first met or where you had your first date, depending on which is more romantic. Recreating your first date is a great way to reminisce about everything that’s happened in the time that’s gone by and to remember how googly eyed you were for each other way back when.

    Try different cuisines
    This is also about broadening your horizons, but it’s a lot less expensive than taking a trip. If you always have Chinese on takeaway night, why not switch it up and try something a bit more exciting. Having new experiences together will bring you closer as a couple and you can have a bit of fun finding your new favourite takeaway over a couple of months.

    Family meant everything on Rebecca and Richard's big day


    Rebecca Greensmith and Richard Chamney

    November 18, 2016 - Charleville Park Hotel, Co. Cork

    The Details 

    SUITS Esquire, Limerick

    MAKEUP Mandy O’Loughlin, Limerick

    FLOWERS Bride’s mother made heirloom bouquets

    PHOTOGRAPHER Ingrid Colvin (Groom’s Cousin)

    CAKE Irenaie Markham

    BAND The Panoramics

    “It was very special to us that so many members of our extended family were able to help with the big day. My sister was the maid of honour, and it was her mother-in-law Irene that made our fantastic wedding cake. The photographer was Ingrid Colvin, Richard’s cousin and that helped us to relax. She was very easy going and did a great job. My mother made all three heirloom bouquets with help from my father. They were perfect and showed up so well in all the pictures.”

    The bride’s favourite memory, “For me, it was getting a dozen yellow roses sent to me from Edward (our son) to the hotel just before the ceremony. It was so thoughtful; my favourite colour from my favourite little man. For Richard, it was the three of us walking/dancing into the reception together! There’s a great photo of that moment, you can see how delighted we were.”

    “We had decided to have the ceremony in the hotel, and the atmosphere in the ceremony room was lovely and relaxed, it was filled with candles. Also by doing this, we could appoint Edward our son as ‘bestman’. He loved being a big part of the day and felt very important, and that was exactly what we wanted.”

    Rebecca Greensmith married the love of her life, Richard Chamney on November 18, 2016 in a fabulous ceremony and beautiful reception, both at Charleville Park Hotel.


    Top tips from Hair by Val O'Dea

    Expert hair stylist Val O’Dea has kindly offered us some tips to share with all you brides-to-be!

    Tip 1 - When booking your hair and make up for your wedding day, if you know who you would like to book, I would recommend booking them sooner rather than later.  Dates often book out a year or a year and a half in advance so you are better to book your suppliers early to avoid disappointment. 
     

    Tip 2
    - When choosing a hair and makeup artist remember that you get what you pay for. 
    Salon prices will always be lower than if you had a hair stylist or makeup artist come to you on your day. You may ask “why are rates so expensive for call out hairdressers or makeup artists” and this is due to the time in which we are at the house. I would sometimes be at a house at seven or eight in the morning, depending on the time of the ceremony. I would stay until just before the ceremony time which is usually one or two in the afternoon. I have to take into account what would cover me to be out of my workplace for that length of time, I also have to take into account the travel cost to get to the wedding and home from the wedding. This is where the costs add up. Also, I specialise in this type of work, wedding hair is what I do. You may find when you go to certain salons you have the same girl that does the colour, the cut and the up-style. That is all well and good, but in my experience, I would go to the person who specialises in this type of work.   

    Tip 3
    - Always have the last hour free. I always have everybody ready an hour before you have to leave for the ceremony. I mentioned this already in my interview but I can't stress enough how important it is. It leaves time for photos before you leave with your bridal party and makes the morning more relaxed.
     

    Tip 4
    - When booking your hair trial, make sure to book in advance, especially if you are looking for a weekend date. I do weddings every weekend so I do some trials in the afternoons after a wedding depending on location, these dates are subject to availability.  I also do my trials mid-week for anyone that would like their trial then. Your bridal party can come to the trial if they like with you. I would recommend not to take too many opinions from too many people outside the bridal party. You want to keep it somewhat a surprise on the day, and sometimes when you ask too many people about your hair trial, it can take one negative comment to throw you off the style even though you might have got thumbs up from the bridal party. 
     

    Tip 5
    - Remember to follow up. As a wedding hair stylist, I get many enquiries every day about dates. The wedding date is only held if the €50 deposit is paid. It is the only possible way I could keep track of bookings. This goes for most suppliers too so it’s a good one to remember. It would be impossible for me to follow up each enquiry as many brides make enquiries to a few hairdressers to price around. Remember to always follow up if you are interested in the date, I often provisionally hold the date for a week for brides that want to price around.
     

    Tip 6
    - If possible, try to book your hair and makeup trial on the same day. It is nice to see the full effect together. This isn't always possible with availability so it is not necessary but it is a good idea to do it if possible.
     

    Tip 7
    – Finally, have fun. Your only job on the day should be to have fun and enjoy it. The rest should be up to the professionals. It will show on the day if you are totally relaxed. Obviously, there are always some nerves, you wouldn't be normal if there wasn't a few butterflies. But overall you have all the hard work done, the wedding day should be just taking it all in and enjoying it, your suppliers will do the rest.

    Meet the extraordinary Hair by Val O'Dea

    We recently asked the wonderful Val O’Dea to give us an in-depth insight into her career as a hair stylist in Limerick.

    Do you have a salon or do you do house calls?
    I don’t have a salon, I work from home and I do most trials from home.  However, at times if there was a reason a bride couldn't come to me, I would try to accommodate them as best I can.  Sometimes trials can be a nice day trip for the bride and her bridal party. It gives them a chance to chill out, have a glass of prosecco and get excited about the big day.  

    Are you willing to do more than one trial with a bride until she is happy with the result and what’s the cost?

    Yes, at times brides do prefer to have a second trial. It is your wedding day after all and you must be 100% happy with the style. Sometimes a bride may have her heart set on a style that she saw in a magazine or Pinterest, but you must remember some of these styles are just for photo shoots and don't need to last a full day. Then sometimes a style doesn't suit the bride’s hair type et cetera meaning she may need another trial. Most of the time one trial is enough, as I give two hours per trial, but I have no problem doing another if the bride is happy to do so and trials are €50 each time. For your trial, it is important to have some pictures of the styles you like and even some of the styles you don't like. This gives me a clear idea of the look you are hoping to achieve.

    Do you need to know what type of dress a bride will be wearing?

    I would 100% recommend having your dress picked before doing a trial. If you do your trial too early, chances are you will want another trial coming up to the wedding. I would recommend using the months before your trial to look up different styles and usually brides go for the same style in each picture they give me. The style of the dress is important when picking out your hair style as the neckline will be important and if you are keen to show off the back of the dress et cetera. However, the most important thing is comfort. If you are a hair down kind of girl, you probably won’t like an up-style for your day.  There is no harm in trying a down style if you usually wear it up and vice versa, but nine times out of 10 usually brides go for what they are more comfortable with on the day. Remember, you want to look like the best version of yourself and not a dress up version of you. 

    What kind of hair prep do you recommend brides undertake in the run up to their wedding day?

    I would recommend trimming the ends of your hair every 6-8 weeks on the run up to your wedding. Obviously, length is important so I would not be taking a lot off each time. I also wouldn't recommend a huge amount of treatments in the run up to the wedding day as this will leave a residue on the hair and make the hair very flat, leaving it hard to achieve volume and softness in the hair. I would advise using a good shampoo and conditioner and that would be enough, my favourites are the Redken brand and Kerestase. With regards to your colour before the wedding, a lot of clients like their colour after a few washes so keep that in mind when booking your last appointment before the day. With regards to highlights, you may like them freshly done before the wedding so maybe have them done a week or two before, just in case there are any disasters that you may need to go back to your colourist for. 

    Would you recommend a bride to bring her hair accessories or veil to the trial?

    If you have the accessories on the day of the trial bring them along, but I don't think it's very important. Some brides like to see the finished look which is totally fine, but the most important thing is the style of the hair and the hair accessories should fit into it after. Remember to match your accessories to your hair not your hair to your accessories. 

    What wedding hair trends are hot for 2017?

    Softness is always around each year. Not a lot of brides like severe looks so I think a lot of texture will be around in 2017 and different tones in the hair. When the hair is soft it compliments most people. I would also always recommend a little volume, just so it’s visible in the photos and it doesn't look too flat from the front. It is still very much 50/50 whether brides wear their hair down or up, again this is down to the bride being comfortable with what she is used to. 

    Why should a bride choose you for her big day?

    I love what I do and I think if you have a passion for what you do it shows. I am there to help the bridal party on the day, not just with the hair but I will make sure everyone is ready on time and not stressed out. Time keeping is one of the most important things on the morning of the wedding and I usually have everyone ready an hour before they need to leave for the ceremony. This is very important, as the photographer will want photos of you in your dress. The last hour you will be able to get into your dress comfortably and not be rushed. I also stay with you until you are leaving to do touch ups and the veil or accessories and I will show your bridesmaids how to take the veil out later on so there is no mess when it comes off. I have been working with brides for a few years now so I would like to think I have an artistic flair to my work but above all, I love weddings and I would like to think I'm a happy and friendly hairdresser. My recent brides have left me some lovely testimonials on my Facebook page if you would also like to head over there- https://www.facebook.com/pg/hairbyvalodea/posts/

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Your wedding day is meant to be the happiest day of your life, make sure you have the right suppliers with you on the day. Photographers, hairdressers, videographers, makeup artists and so on have a huge role to play in making you feel relaxed on the day. There is a difference between going to your local salon and getting it done in your own home or hotel. When in a salon, you will be there for a maximum of an hour or an hour and a half, and your ceremony will be in the afternoon so you don’t know how your hair will last until the that time. At least when getting it done at home or at the hotel, you have peace of mind knowing I'll be there until you leave to make sure you look your best.  

    Contact information
    085 720 0413
    www.hairbyval.ie
    https://www.facebook.com/pg/hairbyvalodea/posts/

    'Oh, What a Night' for Yvonne and Patrick

    Yvonne Carey & Patrick O'Neill

    October 22, 2016 – The Church of The Most Holy Redeemer, Newport & Fitzgerald's Woodlands Hotel, Adare

    Photographs courtesy of Horsfall Photography

    Yvonne Carey, a primary school teacher from Newport, met the handsome Patrick O'Neill, a Special Needs Assistant from Coonagh, eight short years ago. The couple planned a romantic weekend in London, but little did Yvonne know Patrick asked her dad for his blessing before they left for their trip.

    After going to see 'Jersey Boys', Patrick got down on one knee and made Yvonne the happiest girl in the world. "I was in complete shock and started crying so he had to ask again before he put the ring on my finger to be sure I had answered," Yvonne remembers. 'Oh, What a Night' from the musical became their wedding song as they couldn't stop singing it after the engagement.

    The lovebirds got planning the day of their dreams and chose October 22, 2016 for their I’Do’s. They shared the day with 200 of their loved ones at The Church of The Most Holy Redeemer, Newport followed by a lavish feast at award winning family run Fitzgerald's Woodlands House Hotel, Adare.

    The Wedding Party

    Yvonne’s bridesmaids were Nichola Carey, Lena Grace, Catherine Kelly and Orla O’Neill. Patrick’s groomsmen were Matthew Turner, James O’Neill, Mike worthy and Martin Carey. Their flowergirls were Emily and Katie Fitzgerald.  

    The Wedding Team

    From day one, Angela of Horsfall Photography was on hand for the bride and groom, answering every question they could have and she captured the day perfectly for the newlyweds. Old School House Flowers, Kilmallock created the beautiful floral arrangements. The invites were designed and printed by The Invite Hub, with McNamara Printers providing the envelopes. Two hairdressers from Revas Spa at The Woodlands came out to help beautify the bridal party, with Rachael from Catherine Hickey's Hair & Makeup Studio doing everyone's makeup. Rachel Clancy played the saxophone throughout the reception and was followed by The Paddies and DJ Dan who kept the floor full all night. Michael O'Flaherty of Bentley Wedding Car Hire organised transport for the couple and even put ribbons on the other cars they used for the couple. He also had bubbly to hand for the bride and groom to enjoy.  

    The Wedding Details

    Yvonne and Patrick chose to have a travel themed day, with their table names as places they have visited together. They also had their tables decorated with picture books from their travels. The bride baked the cake along with her mum, sister, and cousin. Her sister got the job of icing and decorating the creation and it turned out beautifully.  

    Special Touches

    The bride and groom had a day jam-packed with special touches. They played a slideshow after the meal of their eight years together. They also had a groom's dessert trio and a bride's dessert trio for the guests to choose from. They had a flower backboard and some photo props in the venue, as well as having had lanterns and wicker hearts at the ceremony. Yvonne's best friends performed the music at the church which meant the world to her, Sinead Ryan was on Piano and vocals, Michelle Tuohey on vocals, Deirdre Murphy on the harp and Mike Ryan on guitar and vocals. The bride wore her mother's veil which she had worn 31 years previously. They had favour boxes with small wedding dresses and suits with chocolates for each guest and they left an engraved pen on every place setting. They also gave their parents handkerchiefs with a lovely poem embroidered on them.
    Memorable Moments
    Yvonne’s most memorable moment was "saying ‘I do’ to my best friend". She also said "if I had to pick another I think it would have to be when everyone sat on the dance floor beating the ground around us while we danced in the middle."

    Patrick and Yvonne went to three islands of Hawaii for two weeks, they visited Maui, O'ahu and The Big Island. Lucky for them they didn't miss their flight after a lie in the morning of. Paul Barry, the Aer Lingus Duty Manager held the plane for them in a scene like something out of a film, after which it was announced that 'the honeymoon couple have boarded'.

    How great was it to work with Horsfall Photography?


    "Angela was an absolute dream to work with and put us at ease from the moment we met her. Angela was so much fun to be around and lots of guests commented at how pleasant she was and couldn’t wait to see our photographs. Angela has a great eye and really takes on board what you would like and works from there. I wanted to stay around my hometown for our photographs so that they would be extra special in time and she made some trips up to check out suitable locations. We felt so special and looked after in her care."

    www.horsfallphotography.com


    Tell us about your experience with the Woodlands House Hotel
     

    "The Woodlands absolutely outdid themselves on every front. From the very first meeting we felt we could trust Elaina and David Fitzgerald with any aspect of our wedding. The attention to detail of our day was amazing and everyone raved about the warm feel and the food. They guided us through everything and nothing was impossible. Each member of their staff were so welcoming and accommodating. It was so special to be welcomed by Mrs. Fitzgerald after stepping out of our car. We cannot thank them enough for such a magical weekend."

    www.woodlands-hotel.ie

    A short engagement leads to the wedding of a lifetime

    MaryEllen Mulcahy & Padraig Brennan

    October 21, 2016 – Murroe Church & The Dunraven Arms Adare

    Photographs courtesy of Baker Photography  

    MaryEllen Mulcahy from Murroe, Limerick met her one true love, Padraig Brennan, a Croom native, in November 2012 while she was out with some friends in Nancy Blakes. Padraig popped the question at the beginning of 2016 on the stunning Fanore beach, Clare. Of course MaryEllen said yes and the two set about planning their big day.

    They chose October 21, 2016 as their date and chose The Dunraven Arms, Adare as the venue for their reception. The day was shared with 230 guests.  

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    Catherine Hogan, Kathleen Richardson and Catherine Kealy were MaryEllen's beautiful bridesmaids, while Ruairi Brennan, Patrick Reidy and Christopher Sexton were Padraig's handsome groomsmen. They all played vital roles on the day as well as helping the bride and groom plan the day itself. There was an injection of cuteness on the day provided by gorgeous flowergirl, Bríd Mulcahy, and charming pageboy, Henry Ralphs.  

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    Photobooth 365 provided their services for the day and night which gave guests a great laugh and gave MaryEllen and Padraig a chance to see some of the antics they might have missed. Highnelly Ice-cream cart provided sweet treats for the guests to enjoy. Pia's Flowers and Treats organised stunning floral arrangements for the ceremony and the reception. You Little Beauty and Park Avenue Hair and Makeup Studio beautified the bride in the run up to the wedding and kept her skin, hair and nails in top shape. Rachelle Guiry did the bride's makeup on the morning of the wedding and Ciara Downes McNamara finished off her look with a gorgeous hairstyle.

    Heritage cars provided the bride and groom's transport for the day while the talented Kenneth Baker Photography captured the couple's special moments fantastically. Declan Gleeson of S.E.S. digital filmed the day, blending into the background to make for a truly natural wedding video. The bride wore a beautiful Gemmy Maleous gown from Lilac Rose Bridal along with a veil from the same boutique. She wore Jimmy Choo shoes bought in Brown Thomas and the bridesmaids wore multi-way dresses from Coast. The groom wore a suit from Hugo Boss and the groomsmen were kitted out by Connolly Man.

    SPECIAL TOUCHES
    The groom's late grandfather made a horseshoe arch for Paddraig's parents' wedding so MaryEllen and Padraig decided to include this in their big day as a way of including him.  

    The following day they invited their guests over to O'Dwyers bar, Cappamore for food and drink and to continue the celebrations.  They then set off on the honeymoon of a lifetime to Zimbabwe and South Africa.

    Tell us about your experience working with Baker Photography

    "We immediately felt comfortable with Kenneth of Baker Photography and he adopted a professional attitude at all times while still putting us at ease and having fun with the bridal party and all the family.  Included in our package was an engagement shoot which was good practice for the big day and we were delighted with the results."

    www.bakerphotography.ie

    A fusion of Polish and Irish love makes for a perfect wedding day

    Karolina Morawska & Patrick Hehir

    July 2, 2016 –  Barefield Church & Hotel Doolin, Co. Clare

    Photographs courtesy of Mrs Redhead Photography

    Karolina, a self-employed nail technician who hails from Poland, fell in love with Irishman Patrick, the director of Clare County Trucking, on St. Stephen's Night 2010. They met in a bar in Ennis and Karolina spotted him first, mentioning to her friend how handsome he is. Her friend brought him over to her and they had no choice but to talk to each other. They talked for the rest of the night and got on so well that they eventually exchanged numbers.

    Patrick popped the question on the beach while holidaying in Mexico. Karolina didn't suspect a thing. She said yes of course.  The lovebirds decided to share their day with 180 guests on July 2, 2016 with a ceremony at Barefield Church followed by a fantastic meal and celebration at Hotel Doolin, Clare. 

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    The fabulous bridal party included Katazryna Olszak, Katarzyna Stankiewicz and Alelsandra Szefler as bridesmaids, and Brendon O’Donnell, Joseph Hehir and Ger Jennings as groomsmen. The couple's adorable flowergirl was Karolina's niece, also named Karolina Morawska and Karolina's charming son Glen was the pageboy on the day.

    FAVOURITE MEMORY
    The best man, Brendon, translated his speech into Polish, which he hasn't got a word of. "He spoke in Polish which he doesn’t know a word of, but he sounded perfect. All of our Polish guests were very amazed by this," Karolina remembers.

    SPECIAL MOMENTS
    There was a traditional Polish presentation of bread, salt and two shots. "It was presented by my parents upon entrance to the venue. Bread is offered so that the couple may never know hunger, while salt reminds them of life's difficulties and shots have to be drank and smashed for good luck They  sang “sto lat“ for the bride and groom, it’s a polish tradition," Karolina remembers.

    The couple booked their fabulous honeymoon through Travel Counsellors. They went to Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Los Angeles and New York for a total of three and a half weeks. 

    RANDOMERS

    First holiday together? Tenerife
      
    Fav TV show to watch together? Gold Rush, and Bridget and Eamonn 

    Funniest moment during the wedding? Games: Find a bride, Patrick's eyes were covered and he had to find his bride.

    Which guest looked amazeballs? Kate Hehir “Matilde Cano”- A beautiful baby pink skater dress 

    Whom did you tell you were engaged first? My mum

    One thing you would change about your day? NOTHING  

    Song you walked up the aisle to? “Cannon in D Pachelbel" 

    Song you walked down the aisle to? “Somewhere Over the Rainbow “  


    Tell us about your experience working with Mrs Red Head Photography

    "We were so impressed with her professionalism and talent. Olga was very easy going, friendly and so very patient! All photographs are absolutely stunning and it was really hard to choose the best out of the best for the album! She listened to what we wanted and gave us just the right amount of direction to capture what we were looking for. Photos are the only thing you'll have to remember your wonderful day for the rest of your life."

    www.mrsredhead.com

    A fake competition leads to a real proposal for Marguerite Ryan

    Marguerite Ryan & Timmy Hogan

    November 19, 2016 – St. Joseph’s Church, Ballinahinch & Castle Oaks House Hotel


    Photographs courtesy of The Tilted Tripod

    Marguerite Ryan, originally from Ballinahinch Co. Tipperary met Newtown native Timmy Hogan six years ago in their local town, Nenagh. Timmy’s cousin Tossy has an obvious flare for matchmaking, as he introduced the two and not a day has gone by that they haven’t spoken since. The happy couple now live in the fabulous home they built together in Newtown, Tipperary.

    Timmy’s incredibly romantic proposal had Marguerite in shock; he told her they had won a competition for a night away in the MacDonald Kinsale Hotel and Spa, but as they entered the hotel room there were flowers and bubbly laid out for them. “I was saying ‘this is a brilliant prize’, when I turned to Timmy he was down on one knee with a ring,” Marguerite remembers. The hotel had been in on the surprise and helped Timmy with his unforgettable proposal. Timmy bought the engagement ring in Keane’s Jewellers in Limerick.

    With the proposal behind them, the lovebirds set about planning the day of their dreams with the help of many local vendors. They chose to celebrate their day with 236 guests on November 19, 2016 with a ceremony at St. Joseph’s Church Ballinahinch, followed by a stunning banquet at the Castle Oaks House Hotel.

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    Marguerite’s gorgeous bridesmaids were Elizabeth Gleeson, Mairead Hickey and Claire Ryan. Timmy’s charming groomsmen were Colm O’Brien, Franky Hogan and Donal Hogan.
     
    THE WEDDING TEAM

    The bride’s dress was a Pronovias design, bought in Galway.  The men were kitted out with suits from Connolly Menswear, Limerick.

    Cathy Sheehy of the Cake Parlour made the cake. It was a stacked three-tier cake with chocolate biscuit cake, fruit cake and red velvet cake. The couple had a postbox for their cards in their reception and they also had a photobooth provided by Sunshine Candy Carts on the day. Both Timmy and Marguerite are both GAA fanatics so they decided to have their invites printed in the style of GAA match tickets which were created by Invites by Jen.

    Timmy’s brother-in-law, Donie Comerford, provided use of his Jaguar for the day and drove the bride to the church before the ceremony. Ciara McCullough of The Tilted Tripod captured the day perfectly for the couple, the bride has known Ciara for years and knew the caliber of her work is top notch.

    SPECIAL TOUCHES
    Ciara, their photographer, had them pose with sparklers and smoke bombs in some pictures. Another special touch was when Marguerite’s sister-in-law gave her something new and blue to have with her on the day, as she had already covered the ‘old’ and ‘borrowed’ herself.

    Marguerite and Timmy booked the honeymoon of their dreams through Limerick Travel. They spent three nights in Vegas, they took a Royal Caribbean Cruise, spent seven nights on the Caribbean islands and then three nights in New York.

    How great was it to work with The Tilted Tripod?

    “Working with Ciara was a dream as I already knew her friendly bubbly personality would be the perfect fit for our day. Timmy and I just wanted everybody to be relaxed and enjoy celebrating our marriage, a party atmosphere! I met with Ciara to go through packages and then we arranged to meet at a later date to do a trial run, this was ideal as both Timmy and I are quite shy so we knew exactly what it would be like on the day, no surprises! Ciara knew the location and where to get the best images. What is great is she uses the environment around her making all the photos so natural. Ciara’s attention to detail and eye for a photo are second to none, we love the images she took both on the engagement shoot and on the day of the wedding, I don’t know how we will whittle it down for the album selection!”

    info@thetiltedtripod.net
    087 664 5996


    Tell us about your experience at the Castle Oaks House Hotel?


    "Castle Oaks House Hotel is so homely we couldn’t have been happier with the choice, it is so intimate and a great location for pictures too as it is right on the Shannon and has lovely grounds.  I have to say it was a pleasure dealing with Gobnait, Liam and the team from the very beginning. They couldn’t do more for us, the food and service was outstanding."

    www.castleoaks.ie

    The personal touch for Nessa & Eoin's wedding day

    Nessa Mullane & Eoin Enright  

    August 5, 2016 – St. Munchin's College Chapel, Limerick & Castletroy Park Hotel

    Photographs courtesy of Evelyn O'Connor Photography

    Process chemist Nessa Mullane met the love of her life, material scientist Eoin Enright in Clonmel way back in 2006. The couple had an amazing romance and got engaged before they walked the 'Camino de Santiago' in Spain together.  A date was quickly set for August 5, 2016 and the couple got planning the day of their dreams.

    They chose to celebrate with 125 of their nearest and dearest family and friends at St. Munchin's College Chapel followed by a lavish reception at the Castletroy Park Hotel. Íde Mullane was Nessa's bridesmaid and Conor Boyce was groomsman. The bride had a few pre-wedding celebrations, including afternoon tea at No. 1 Pery Square and a weekend away in Galway.  

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    The couple had their families play a big part in their day, with Eoin's mother, Lil, having made the top tier of their wedding cake and Nessa's mother, Emily, providing the floral arrangements and candles. Nessa and Eoin chose to make their own invites which were super cute for all the guests.

    Eoin's brother and niece provided ceremony music, Paul Enright, Sarah Enright and a close family friend, Chloe Ryan. Their wedding band, The Aristocrats, played through the night until they were taken over by DJ Paul Prenderville who kept people on their feet well into the wee hours. Evelyn O'Connor had everyone smiling for the camera throughout the day and she captured the couple's precious memories perfectly.

    The bride chose to wear a Justin Alexander bridal gown from The Little White Dress Bridal Salon, Limerick. She also bought a veil to compliment it there and she purchased her headband on Ebay. Sefton House Bridal had the perfect dress for Íde, the bridesmaid. The groom's suit came from the experienced team at Louis Copeland and sons. Groomsman Conor wore a specially selected suit from Esquire Formal Menswear. The mother of the bride wore a fabulous outfit from Sinéad's boutique, Annacotty.  

    SPECIAL TOUCHES
    Nessa and Eoin chose to have lemonade from Apple Farm in Tipperary, a place they would have visited a couple of times, available to their guests during the drinks reception. Eoin built the cake/cupcake stand and Nessa decorated the church herself with the help of Emily, Dannie and Íde, "this meant everything was personal on the day," remembers Nessa. Eoin was very involved in the planning, he helped with "everything bar the dresses," shares Nessa.

    How was your experience working with Evelyn O'Connor Photography?

    "We were conscious that we would be spending some time with the photographer on the day, so we wanted someone who would make us feel comfortable. From day one Evelyn was amazing to work with. Her work spoke for itself and she has a great personality. Her work ethic is second to none, taking time to meet with us before the wedding at the venues to walk through the location and timeline for the day. From the minute she walked into the house on the morning of the 5th, she felt like a member of the family. We had great fun getting ready and she even helped us with our shoes and buttonholes! Her work through the day was brilliant and all of our guests commented on her professionalism and ability to put people at ease. This relaxed attitude resulted in photos that were natural and a real reflection of the day. The wedding album and prints are a testament to this."

    www.evelynoconnor.ie

    How was your experience at the Castletroy Park Hotel?


    "Amazing venue for the wedding. The staff were extremely helpful and accommodating and went above and beyond to ensure our day was memorable.  The location, room and food were all to the highest of standards. The food at 2am was a welcome addition to the celebrations."


    www.castletroypark.ie

    Sharon O'Neill & Hendrik Peek

    August 26, 2016 – Armada Hotel, Co. Clare  

    Photographs courtesy of Eamon - Photographic.ie  

    Sharon O’Neill married Hendrik Peek on August 28, 2016 at the Armada Hotel, Co. Clare. The couple had a very family orientated day, with their celebrant being the mother of the groom, award winning Marike from JaYesTa Ceremonies. Sharon’s sister, Susan, was the wedding singer while Lorraine, a family friend, played the harp. The groom made a beautiful arch decorated with colourful butterflies, the bride’s favourite, for the couple to get married under.  

    Sharon’s mother, Helen, made the wedding cake with her extensive experience in the area of catering. A family friend made the flowers for the ceremony and reception and Sharon’s uncle provided the use of his vintage Ford Anglica for transport on the day. “It was lovely having all our family come together to make the day so special for us,” Sharon remembers.  

    As Hendrik is originally from The Netherlands, his family made a huge effort to fly over to Ireland to celebrate with the couple. They even had one reading in his native Dutch. Unfortunately, Hendrik’s grandfather couldn’t make it to the wedding but this led to them getting a videographer. This was a gift from Hendrik’s family so that his grandfather could watch the wedding at a later date.  

    The lovebirds booked the Armada Hotel in the hopes of having an outdoor wedding. While this was risky given our country’s notorious weather, the day came together perfectly and the skies were a bright, clear blue. They had their ceremony on the green overlooking the beach, making for some stunning views throughout the day.  

    Sharon’s favourite memory is seeing Hendrik at the top of the aisle, “I was so nervous but by the time I got to him at the top I was so relaxed and seeing all my family and friends around me sitting out in the sun was something I will never forget," Sharon recalls.  

    In the father-of-the-bride’s speech, Sharon’s dad referenced her childhood by having her stand with him and sing ‘Stand Up and Fight’, the song that’s played before all of the Munster rugby matches. He brought her up going to Munster matches in Thomond Park, so this struck a chord with her and is a memory that she will cherish all of her life. 

    Jayne Cahalane & Wayne Braddish

    June 6, 2016 - The Milk Market, Limerick  

    Photos courtesy of Kevin Flynn Photography  

    Jayne Cahalane from Cork met Limerick man Wayne Braddish back in 2014. After a whirlwind romance Jayne decided to move to Limerick with her son Luke in 2015 and hasn’t looked back since. The lovebirds are parents to five-month old Layla and Jayne’s son Luke is seven years old.  

    The pair celebrated their fair themed wedding day at Limerick’s iconic Milk Market on June 6, 2016 with 120 guests after Wayne’s wonderfully romantic proposal at The Cleeves Factory.  They held the ceremony on the mezzanine above the market and the reception downstairs in the main market area.
     

    The Bridal Party
    Jayne’s two sisters, Lisa and Emma, and her best friend, Theresa, made up her side of the bridal party and Wayne had his two best friends, Alan and John, along with his nephew Lee to act as groomsmen.  Jayne’s son Luke and her nephew Jack, who came all the way from New Zealand, were dapper pageboys on the day.
     

    The Wedding Team
    Jayne’s sister Emma made their wedding cake and invites, Kevin Flynn Photography captured their day and Bad Boys BBQ from Cork provided the food for the reception. Marie from ‘Marie’s Cheese Shop’ in the milk market provided tea and coffee for guests after the ceremony. Dolan’s Warehouse provided the bar, security and stage as well as some useful expertise as they have held concerts in The Milk Market before.  

    The talented Peter Lane makeup and Dearbhaile O’Connor from Obsessed hair salon worked together to beautify the bride and her party.  “I can’t recommend these two highly enough, and they work so well together, we had the best laugh getting ready in the bar of the hotel that morning,” Jayne recalls.
     

    Jayne made her way to the ceremony in the sidecar of her dad’s white BMW motorbike, with her bridesmaids following suit in those of her father’s friends.   The bride wore an ivory dress by JuJu and Christine and she got her shoes at Windsor and also picked up a pair of white lace up converse-type shoes at the market for wearing around before the wedding.  

    The couple had a bouncy castle, popcorn machine, candy floss machine and a slushie machine on the day, all provided by Mr. Cool. They also had selfie sticks on every table for guests.  

    The highlight of their wedding was when they went down to funderland with their bridal party to go on the carousel. “It was a bit surreal having everyone stare,” Jayne remembers. Another memorable moment was when Chris played cheesy noughties music, which brought Jayne back to her teen years in the middle of the dance floor. 

    Gráinne O’Sullivan & Gerard Barrett

    January 2, 2016 – St. Mary’s Church, Listowel and Listowel Arms Hotel

    Photos courtesy of Michelle Prunty Photography 

    IFTA award winning director Gerard Barrett married Grainne O’Sullivan from Listowel on Saturday, January 2, 2016 in St. Mary’s Church, Listowel and afterwards hosted a wonderful reception which included Transformers and Glassland Actor Jack Reynor and his model fiancée Madeleine Mulqueen in the Listowel Arms Hotel. Also in attendance was Muiris Crowley and Joe Mullins – the stars of the award winning Pilgrim Hill. Joanne Fitzmaurice, Leeann O’Sullivan, Lisa Healy served as Gráinne’s bridesmaids and John Herlihy, Tommy Barrett, Muiris Crowley were Gerard’s groomsmen.

    Gráinne’s hair was done by the fantastic Noelle at The Glam Pod, Tralee and the bride had her makeup done by the talented Maria at MK Beauty, Listowel.  Gráinne’s dress was designed by Allure Romance with French lace.


    THE WEDDING DETAILS

    First Dance ‘How Long Will I Love You’ Ellie Goulding

    Cake Selina’s Cakes for all Occasions, a stunning five-tier cherry blossom style cake.

    Theme Vintage Hollywood, we designed our invitations to look like old cinema tickets, our table names were classic movies written on clapperboard centre pieces and the  background music for the meal was tracks from all our favourite old films.”

    Personal touches  “Instead of traditional wedding favours we made donations to animal rescue charities and each guest received a donation card.”

    Favourite Memory “Probably Crystal Swing’s first song. It was great to see everyone old and young having so much fun on the dancefloor!”

    Honeymoon Hawaii


    How was your experience at the Listowel Arms Hotel?

    Patrice and all the staff at the Arms hotel were amazing from start to finish and really went the extra mile to make the day special by adding so many personal touches.”

    www.listowelarms.com

    Kara O'Shea & Conor McDonagh

    August 6, 2016 - St. Mary's Cathedral & Killarney Oaks Hotel

    The Details


    Dress Designed by Kara and made by Orlaith Carroll

    Suits Esquire Formal Menswear

    Hair & make up Sean Taaffe Group

    Invites  Invite Hub

    Wedding theme Country Rustic  

    "I had a hair stylist and make up artist at my drinks reception as a surprise for guests. They fixed hair and topped up makeup to have everyone looking great all night"

    "As a surprise for Conor, who is a farmer, I arranged two big bales dressed as a bride and groom outside the venue. I also got Kerry Tractors to drive a brand new Massey Ferguson to the venue covered in 'Just Married' bunting. We also had a big wheel that you could spin for dares such as 'Ask someone you don't know to dance.'


    Kara O'Shea married the love of her life, Conor McDonagh on August 6, 2016 in St. Mary's Cathedral, Killarney followed by a reception at the Killarney Oaks Hotel. 

    A dream wedding at The Fitzgerald's Woodlands House Hotel

    Klara Kennedy & Pat Carroll  

    October 29, 2016 – Holy Trinity Abbey, Adare & Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel  

    Photographs courtesy of Black Diamond Photography  

    Klara Kennedy from Adare met her now-husband, Pat Carroll, a Granagh native, on a night out in Fireworks Nightclub, Newcastle West. The pair connected instantly and have been together ever since. They are now parents to their handsome son Cillian, who played a big role in their day as pageboy.  

    Pat’s ever so romantic proposal took place at Lough Gur when the couple went out on a sunny Saturday morning.  He chose the perfect engagement ring for his bride in Keane’s Jewellers, Limerick and of course she said yes!
     

    Klara has always dreamed of an autumn wedding at The Woodlands House Hotel, and that’s exactly what she got. The bride and groom chose to celebrate their love in a magical ceremony at the Holy Trinity Abbey, Adare, followed by a luxurious reception at The Woodlands.  “I have always pictured myself walking through the doors of the Woodlands in a white dress since I was a little girl and it was everything I knew it would be,” Klara remembers.
     

    THE WEDDING PARTY  
    Klara had her sister Ashlee as her chief bridesmaid and her sister Jennifer was also a bridesmaid. Pat’s bestman was his brother John and his brother Niall was his groomsman. Kayleigh O’Sullivan and Shonagh O’Sullivan were adorable flowergirls and the couple’s son, Cillian Carroll, was a charming pageboy on the day.  

    THE WEDDING TEAM  
    Klara chose a bridal gown from The Little White Dress Bridal Salon, Limerick. She chose bridesmaids dresses in Kate’s Kloset, Askeaton.  The team from Catherine Hickey’s Hair and Make Up Studio beautified the bride and her bridesmaids the morning of the wedding. Black Diamond Photography did an amazing job capturing the bride and groom’s special day and the videographer, Jim Listen, was a great asset to the wedding team.   

    Klara has some bride-to-bride advice she would like to share, “The one thing that worried me is that it would go by too fast. It didn't because we did what we wanted to do and didn't let anyone take over our time! They are your memories to have for the rest of your life so let it be a day to remember.”  

    How was it working with Black Diamond Photography?
     
    “From our very first meeting with Kaspar, I felt at ease! We told him we didn't like structure and we just wanted him to capture us and our guests in the moment and he lived up to every ounce of his word! I am not one for pictures as I am very critical of myself but I was overwhelmed by his work on our wedding day. Right through from the morning until the dancing he made us feel comfortable especially for me as I didn't even feel he was there when he was and to me that's what it's all about, capturing your day as it was! He produced a slideshow at our reception after the meal which reduced me to tears, it was just so beautiful and he was an absolute gentleman to have there on our special day!”  

    www.blackdiamondphotography.ie

    Tracey Hennigar & David Hockedy

    August 24,2016 - The Castle Oaks House Hotel

    Photos courtesy of Darren Ryan Photography
     
    THE DETAILS

    DRESS Pronovias from Aibheil, Adare
    SUITS Sixth Sense Limerick & Esquire
    HAIR Catherine Hickey MAKE UP Catherine Hickey
    INVITES Designed and handmade by Tracey Hennigar
    WEDDING THEME The Princess Bride Fairytale

    “I designed and created all the venue décor, floral centerpieces and the wedding arch was created with beautiful ivory wisteria, white moth orchids and  ivy,_ _lit with butterfly fairy lights and white feathered lovebirds along with crystal ball tealight holders
    suspended from the floral centerpieces like they were floating in mid air. Our table plan was of our favourite movies, listing our guests as the cast. This was a real talking point with everyone taking pictures with it.”

    “Saying our personal vows in front of our family and fas the musicians played our theme song ‘storybook love’ while our daughters who were our flowergirls presented us with our rings.”  

    Tracey Hennigar married her one true love, David Hockedy, on August 24, 2016 in a magical ceremony and luxurious reception, both held at The Castle Oaks House Hotel.

    Iris McNamara & Mark Carey

    April 23, 2016 - The Lakeside Hotel, Killaloe

    Photos courtesy of Tony Clancy Photography

    THE DETAILS  

    SUITS Connolly Menswear
    HAIR Ciara Downes McNamara & Park Avenue Hair and Makeup
    CARS Irish Diamond Limousines  

    “Two days before we flew home to Limerick my best friend Meg gave me the best present ever. She gave me a picture brooch of my mother for my flowers. She not only made one for me, she also gave me three extra. One the morning of the wedding, I brought my two sisters and my niece into the sitting room and showed them the picture of my mother on their flowers. My mother passed away 21 years ago and this was so special to me as I was thinking of a way to have her with me .”  

    “I did not see this happening until I saw the video, however Mark did.  My nephew Gavin was my pageboy. I gave him my ring pillow with one of my wedding bands, (I had two wedding bands, bestman had the second one) to carry up the aisle.
    After he walked a few feet up the aisle, he decided to kick the pillow across the church.”  

    Iris McNamara married Mark Carey on April 23, 2016 at The Holy Family Church, Southill, Limerick followed by a waterside wedding reception at The Lakeside Hotel, Killaloe.

    Team wedding

    by Carrie Moloney

    Every wedding begins with a proposal… And it doesn’t just stop at one. We all know the importance of the first “will you?” and the final “I do!”, but what about the other very special questions that are asked in between?

    Weddings are synonymous with romance, with declarations of devotion and lengthy love letters. Love is in the air, and everybody knows it. I’d like to write a love letter of a different sort, more of a group hug on paper. A tribute to the A Team who are there to hold the bride’s hand and to prop the groom up on the day. A homage to some of the star players in the wedding world – the bridal party. If I were to write this letter to my own bridal squad, I’d say a very big thank you. First up, I’d say thanks to my bridesmaids for being a delight throughout the hunt for the perfect dresses. Whether I suggested a rainbow of pastel petticoats or perfectly coordinated full-length gowns, nothing phased these ladies. In today’s wedding world, anything goes. Bridesmaids’ dresses are no longer all about reams of matching taffeta or squeezing everyone into a singularly unflattering frock. There’s an overwhelming array of choices on offer, and that in itself can lead to all sorts of distress about the dress. The best way to avoid getting your garter in a twist? Embrace the possibilities and have fun with them! Your big day will be all the more picture-perfect for it.

    I’d also have to say thanks for being on alert and averting any minor disasters without as much as a squeak. It could happen that a bride, who shall remain unnamed, might put her engagement ring somewhere safe while she’s washing her face on the wedding morning, and that safe place might be so safe that it takes all three bridesmaids to find the ring again. It could well happen that a very busy groom forgets to download the reception entrance song, and some quick thinking and an iTunes raid by a clever groomsman is called for. It could even transpire that the band just might accidently go to the wrong hotel, and need to be corralled back to the ranch. There’s no end to the list of mini-dilemmas that can crop up unexpectedly on a wedding day, but having your A Team at hand means that all potential meltdowns should be swiftly averted before any harm is done.

    Finally, I would say thank you for being indescribably and uniquely special. Every wedding will have its one-of-a-kind moments, and so many of these were brought about by our wonderful wedding party. I don’t think I’ll ever forget having to be guided to my hotel room with my eyes closed on the night before the wedding, because it was past midnight and our very conscientious bridal party wouldn’t allow my husband-to-be and I to see each other. Nor will I forget our best man’s speech. After breaking out in a sweat and ducking under the top table to try to find his missing notes, he ended up delivering a faultless speech from memory. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house… And he found his notes immediately afterwards. He’d been sitting on them the entire time. The unscripted moments are often the most special, and they’re all the more precious for it.

    Granted, getting a bridal party in place isn’t always a walk in the park. Choosing your bridesmaids and groomsmen should be the easiest thing on your wedding to-do list – you know that you want to have your closest friends and family by your side on your special day, and surely that’s all there is to it. It’s not always that easy, and, as with every decision you make in the weird and wonderful land of wedding planning, picking your wedding party can end up being an exercise in diplomacy that takes some very delicate handling. The whole Clinton versus Trump saga has nothing on a Battle of the Bridesmaids in full flow. In the end, however, those who are there will be there for the best possible reasons, and it’s a truly lovely thing to be able to show someone just how much they mean to you by asking them to be by your side on what will be one of the most important days of your life.

    So, to bridesmaids and groomsmen everywhere – I applaud you. On behalf of beleaguered brides and frazzled grooms the world over, thank you all.

    Samantha and Karen, the perfect fit

    October 21, 2016 - Bunratty Castle Hotel

    Photos courtesy of New Age Photography

    Karen Byrne met Samantha Cummins in Quinn’s bar, Limerick in 2002. Their eyes locked from across a crowded bar! It was love at first sight. Karen’s first reaction was “I am going to marry her” and after a few years of friendship the couple eventually got together and subsequently tied the knot. They now live in Cappamore, Limerick with their three children Amy, 15, Joshua, 6, and Oscar, 4.  

    THE PROPOSAL 

    Karen proposed to Samantha at the top of the Rockefeller Centre in New York but was met with a ‘no’ from Samantha. This quickly changed to ‘yes’ when she realised Karen was being serious. Shortly after the date was set for October 21, 2016 at the Bunratty Castle Hotel, Co Clare. They were joined by 180 guests for a humanist ceremony, officiated by Bridget Carlin, and celebrations at the hotel. 

    THE WEDDING TEAM 

    Karen wore a beautiful dress from The Little White Dress Bridal Salon, Limerick. Bridesmaid’s dresses were bought in Be Fabulous boutique. The bridesmen’s suits were from Club Dangan, Ennis while Esquire Formal Menswear provided suits for the pageboys, Joshua and Oscar. Ring O Roses provided floral arrangements for the day. “Pat was a pleasure to deal with, very polite, efficient and professional and made some beautiful wedding day flowers for all the bridal party and for the ceremony room on the day.” 

    Orla Kennedy O’Brien created the wedding cake and really captured Karen and Samantha’s characters in a creative and fun way. Mad Hatters band provided music for the evening and had everyone up off their seats all night long. 

    Ciara Meade sang at the end of the ceremony and again at the canapé and prosecco reception. She sang ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m yours)’ by Stevie Wonder as the couple signed the papers and ‘I’m a believer’ by The Monkees as the girls left the ceremony. She also sang ‘Ireland’s Call’ for Samantha and ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ for Karen. Ciara also took the time to learn a new song that she hadn’t heard before, ‘The Story’ by Sara Ramirez. 

    Their daughter’s best friend, Laura Flanagan, sang their entrance songs. She sang ‘The One’ by Kodaline for Karen and ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love With You’ by Elvis for Samantha. She also sang ‘How long will I love you’ by Ellie Goulding. “At fifteen years of age she sang like a professional with fifteen years’ experience. To have Laura, a long time addition to our family, sing at our wedding made our ceremony more personal to us.” 

    Bernard O’Brien of New Age Photography captured the day fantastically in both photos and a video for the couple. Lisa Shanahan and Carina Laur did the girls’ hair and makeup. They had a jigsaw theme because of their shared love of jigsaw puzzles and “we have always said we are the perfect fit for eachother do it seemed fitting”. 

    FAVOURITE MEMORIES

    Karen and Samantha’s favourite memories of the day was spending time with their friends and family and experiencing all the different emotions of a wedding day with them. Their kids were also heavily involved in the wedding; they included a special sand ritual into their ceremony, “we had five jars of different colour sands, each jar of sand was to symbolise the essence of each individual and the attributes they bring to our family. Each of us poured our sand into a personalised vase, the swirling colours were to signify that we are all distinct and that it is our different personalities that add beautiful colour to the tapestry of the family.” 

    PERSONAL TOUCHES  
     

    From start to finish Karen and Samantha wanted to inject some fun into their wedding day. The invitations they sent out were in the style of a court summons so they had people in a panic before they realised what it was. Then they decided to add a pop of colour, so they bought matching rainbow shoes and umbrellas for the day. They also had Orla Kennedy O’Brien make the top tier of their cake rainbow coloured on the inside. Their entrance song to the dining room was ‘Maniac 2000’, which got all of the guests in a great mood to party. 

    The girls had a jigsaw piece engraved on both of their wedding rings as well as their knife set by Matthew Stephens Jewellers. Some personal touches Karen and Samantha made to the day included using significant dates in their families’ history as their table plan. Each table began with a different year, beginning with their grandparents wedding dates and a photo of them on their wedding days. Each photo was held on a clip attached to a jigsaw piece. The brides made the clips themselves. They also tried to keep the kids involved as much as possible on the day. Samantha had a sign made up for Oscar to wear up the aisle ahead of her as a surprise for Karen. It read ‘Mammy are you ready? Here comes mommy’. “Karen told me afterwards that she loved it and Oscar was delighted getting a job.” 

    All three of their kids did a reading. Their daughter Amy was a bridesmaid, and the two boys even handled the rings which made the day even more personal for the couple. “Apparently in every Irish wedding someone drops something and someone falls, our youngest Oscar covered both by dropping the ring and falling off the stage but it was all taken in good fun and gave everyone something to laugh and smile about, including himself.” 

    Samantha and Karen jetted off on their honeymoon to Basel, Switzerland to take in a tennis tournament and then went to Lake Como in Italy to relax and unwind for a few days in the sun.” 

    What was your experience like at the Bunratty Castle Hotel? “Five star, and we would give 10 if possible. David Shelly, General Manager, is an absolute credit to the hotel. There was nothing we asked David that he did not do. He was on hand from start to finish and was fun and an absolute pleasure to deal with. We would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Bunratty Castle Hotel to anyone for an event. His staff were amazing on the day and were praised around the room by many people. The chef, Donna, had her talents put to the test as we brought our son with a nut allergy, vegetarians, vegans and vegans with food allergies. The food was incredible and she could not have been more accommodating and helpful. We could not, if we tried, find fault with this venue, David, Donna and the staff at the hotel ensured we had the most memorable day imaginable.”

    www.bunrattycastlehotel.com 

    Two sparklers, one wedding and a whole lot of love

    Eimear Walsh & Grace Lynch

    November 18, 2016 - Hotel Doolin, Clare

    Photos courtesy of The Tilted Tripod


    Garda Eimear met her perfect match, Grace a healthcare assistant, online in 2012. They were both swept off their feet by one another and coincidentally planned proposals for the same week in 2015. Luckily Grace beat Eimear to the punch with a romantic proposal at Two Mile Gate, Killaloe but they both got a gorgeous sparkler to show off (Eimear already gotten a ring for Grace). 

    The lovebirds got planning and chose to celebrate their day at the Hotel Doolin in Clare on November 18, 2016. They invited 95 guests to their rustic themed celebrations and everyone had the best day. 

    THE WEDDING DETAILS 

    Grace got her dress in Amore Mio, Killaloe. Eimear was kitted out by the excellent team at A Hand Tailored Suit in Dublin, with a bespoke three-piece suit. The brides went with simple floral arrangements with bouquets for themselves and their mothers. The cake was designed and made by Sarah’s Cakes in Kildysart, Clare and the cake topper was made by Bernie McCullough of Treats in Newport. Their Invites were created by On Silver Pond Invitations, Adare and the couple were delighted with them.  

    Teresa Quinn from the county registrars office officiated the ceremony. She put the brides at ease and performed an excellent ceremony. Some of Grace’s friends provided traditional music for an hour in the evening and were then replaced by The Busker, Christine Keane and Paul Fahy. “They were brilliant and had the dancefloor packed all night,” Grace remembers. 

    They had Ciara McCullough of The Tilted Tripod capture their day perfectly and the couple were absolutely delighted with the end result and her dedication to the job. “She was amazing to deal with, and did much more than take photos. Words don’t do justice to how much she helped us, from taking the photos to dressing the bridal party, to giving her flats to Grace for the night,” Eimear remembers. 

    The brides share the same favourite moment from the day; seeing eachother in their wedding outfits for the first time. “When I saw Grace in her dress, my heart stopped,” said Eimear. “When I first laid my eyes on Eimear in her stunning suit, all my dreams came true,” gushed Grace. 

    The ladies decided on a few days of relaxation in sunny Lanzarote for their honeymoon which they booked through Lynda in Falcon Travel. 

    How great was it working with The Tilted Tripod? 

    “Ciara was amazing. Our mothers want to adopt her! She could not have done more for us. She deserves every award going. She was just flawless, and really put us at ease. put us at ease.” 

    info@thetiltedtripod.ie 
    087 664 5996

    Lisa Griffin & Barry O'Sullivan

    Photos courtesy of Ronan Shaw Photography

    THE DETAILS

    SUITS Esquire Formal Menswear

    HAIR Catherine Hickey Hair and Makeup

    MAKE UP Catherine Hickey Hair and Makeup

    FLOWERS Family Friend – Frances McInerney

    VIDEOGRAPHER PVP Digital 


    WEDDING THEME Romantic

    “My Grandfather passed away in August of 2015 so I used one of his handkerchiefs as my something old  which I kept in the pocket of my wedding dress all day.”

    “The journey to the church with my dad was one of my favourite memories, he kept me really calm 
    and we had a drink of whiskey to settle any last minute nerves.”

    Lisa Griffin married the man of her dreams, Barry O’Sullivan, on July 30, 2016 at St. Senan’s Church, Clonlara 
    followed by a lavish reception at Radisson Blu Hotel, Limerick.

    Think outside the box

    Irish couples are well known for having a unique take on the world. To capitalise on this take we have put together a list of things you can do to make your wedding stand out as one of a kind.

    CIRCULAR CEREMONY
    Have your loved ones seated around you while you get hitched, it makes for an intimate ceremony even if there is a large crowd and everyone will get a good view of the nuptials.  You could also bring this style into your reception by getting rid of the top table and just having a circular table for you and your wedding party. With this table in the middle of the room, everybody will get to see you and it makes you much more approachable than you would be at a classic top table.

    SCRATCH CARD WEDDING INVITES These are a super cute way of inviting people to your wedding. Create a scratch card so people can have fun unveiling the date of your big day; it’s a super fun and even DIY option if you are so inclined. Write something cheesy like ‘lucky in love’ on them and your guests will love it, everyone’s a winner.  

    ALTERNATIVES TO CAKE
    Cake isn’t your cup of tea? No problem, there are tons of different confections to sink your teeth into on your wedding day. Try donuts or pastries instead to give your guests something unexpected. If you are getting married around the same time as some of your friends who will have a similar guest list, it might give your guests a much needed break from wedding cake.  Talk to our confectionery suppliers for their advice on this and together you can come up with some wonderful ideas. Desert tables will also be the biggest thing to hit the sweet scene for 2017.

    SCRATCH CARD WEDDING INVITES
    These are a super cute way of inviting people to your wedding. Create a scratch card so people can have fun unveiling the date of your big day; it’s a super fun and even DIY option if you are so inclined. Write something cheesy like ‘lucky in love’ on them and your guests will love it, everyone’s a winner.

    PHOTO STAND INS
    Instead of the usual photo booth opt for a funny photo stand in to be set up in your drinks reception. A super fun idea sure to give your guests a great laugh.

    Staying warm on your big day


    by Niamh Bartley

    Winter weddings are some of the most beautiful of the year, the crisp, bright daylight makes for stunning photo opportunities and the cold weather makes it much more acceptable to snuggle up to your brand-new hubby/wife. Sadly the downside is the temperature, you don’t want to miss out on the fun of the day because you’re shaking and you certainly don’t want to be uncomfortable on your big day! We have some ideas that might help keep you and your guests cosy for the day that’s in it.

    Gloves
    If you’re cold, the first place you’ll feel it is your fingers. You won’t want shaky hands to take away from your special day. A pair of elegant gloves will add a certain regality to your wedding look and they can be removed for some pictures. Overall gloves are much more stylish than blue fingers. Another way to incorporate gloves into the wedding is to offer them to guests as wedding favours, you could have them monogrammed as a memento of your day.

    Hot drinks
    Hot chocolate with marshmallows or a mulled wine will go down a treat with guests on a winters day, so why not serve these beverages as part of your drinks reception before your meal. You could have them served alongside some warm winter themed canapés, especially if your wedding is before Christmas Day.

    Tropical props
    If you don’t feel like playing on the Christmas theme you could always have some summery bits and pieces to take your guests’ minds off of the cold. A photobooth with a tropical background could give your guests a great laugh and could make for some hilarious wedding day moments.

    Choose the right venue
    Venues with lots of glass walls or windows will feel cold on the day, try choosing a venue with lots of carpet and a warm light backdrop will keep you and your guests nice and cosy for the evening that’s in it.

    What to do if it rains on your wedding day

    By Niamh Bartley

    We can’t all be lucky enough to get a crisp and dry winters day for our wedding, so if you want to be prepared for what you could be facing then here are a few tips to keep the rain from spoiling your day!

    Embrace it
    No matter how hard we try, we cannot control the weather, so if it’s going to rain it’s going to rain. The best thing you can do is get some fantastic candid photos of you and your hubby splashing in the puddles and enjoying yourself on your special day. Photographs are guaranteed to look gorgeous in overcast weather because the light saturation will look amazing in comparison to that of a blindingly sunny day and you can have a bit of fun picking out matching umbrellas in the days coming up to your wedding. 

    Be prepared
    The easiest way to let the weather put a downer on your day is being unprepared. Even if you’re in denial that it could rain, you’ll regret not going welly shopping when the day finally arrives. There are tons of ways to incorporate rain into your day and no; it is not a sign from the gods that something will go wrong. Bring a pair of stylish wellies for pictures, so you don’t wreck your brand new Valentinos and bring an umbrella, everything else will work out. 

    Pictures
    Pictures can be tricky on a wet day but talk to your photographer and I’m sure they will have many ideas that will make your wedding album one of a kind. If you’re feeling super adventurous and you have a few umbrellas then take outdoor pictures, they will be completely unique and you’ll look back on them so fondly in years to come. Just have fun in the rain… it’s possible you know!

    Indoor activities
    This is an obvious one but it’s so important, some of your guests might not be as keen to stay out in the rain as you are so be mindful of them. Provide umbrellas at the ceremony or remind everybody to bring their own and don’t have your wedding anywhere too open to the elements. Ask your venue when they will be ready to receive your guests and organise transport to the venue from the church at that time.

    Perfect songs to play on your winter wedding day

    by Niamh Bartley  

    1. Winter Song – Sara Bareilles   
    This could be a great choice to play at the ceremony, its slow pace and gentle lyrics would be perfect for a church or civil ceremony.   


    2. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas – Sam Smith version   
    This version could be fantastic for a slow dance with your new hubby. 

      
    3. All I Want For Christmas is You – Mariah Carey   
    If you are looking for something a little bit fun but still romantic this is the song for you.   


    4. Yours – Ella Henderson   
    A really romantic slow paced song, perfect for the first dance or the ceremony.   


    5. Four Seasons ‘Winter’ – Vivaldi   
    This could be fantastic to walk down the aisle to; its beautiful melody would set your day off to a great start.   


    6. Winter Winds – Mumford and Sons   
    We could imagine this playing at any stage of a winter wedding. It would sound phenomenal.   


    7. Mirrors – Justin Timberlake   
    The tempo and lyrics of this song would suit any wedding at any time of the year. It reflects the love of two people, exactly what you would want to play at your wedding.   


    8. Baby it’s Cold Outside – Dean Martin 
    Not the best for keeping your mind off the cold, but if you guys are any good at singing you could belt out a few bars of this gorgeous duet.   


    9. Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree – Brenda Lee   
    This one is great for keeping everyone on the dancefloor all night. A classic upbeat Christmas song.         


    10. Merry Christmas Everyone – Shakin’ Stevens   
    This has to be one of the most popular Christmas songs of all time, who would not love to hear this at the end of the night?

    Winter wedding trends

    Winter is finally upon us and if you’re planning a winter wedding, we have been keeping up to date on all the latest trends and have made a list of all our favourite ones just for you!  

    VELVET SHOES AND ACCESSORIES
    People that thought the velvet trend died in the ‘90s were definitely wrong, it’s the perfect material for winter wedding accessories especially in dark colours such as maroon, plum and navy. Bold colours are big in winter weddings as they warm up your look. 

    NON-FLORAL CENTREPIECES
    Candelabras with fairy lights hanging off them and even potted plants have reached the centre of wedding tables across the world this year. Alternative centrepieces look just fantastic and the couple can choose exactly how they would like them. Floral pieces are slightly outdated and even when they are used they are usually changed up a little bit from the norm. This trend is defintiely going to keep going strong this year. You could also mix floral pieces with other centrepieces to make it look authentic and different. 

    NAKED CAKES
    These exquisite creations have definitely gained traction among engaged couples the world over. They are fantastic, rustic looking cakes usually topped with decadent fruit or flowers to make them look elegant. They are basically cakes that have not been iced on the outside, they look stunning and are still uncommon enough that they would stand out as different for your wedding. 

    ACTION SHOTS
    More and more couples are choosing to have the photographer take pictures that tell a story. Gone are the days of the classic wedding photos, it’s popular to have your photographer capture really personal moments, like the first time your parents see you in your dress. These are the pictures that tell a story and it is definitely a great trend to be part of.

    JUST THE HIGHLIGHTS
    Having the videographer cut all of the footage into one  small video is becoming a huge trend for weddings. We live in an age where everything is so easily accessible and shareable that couples often choose an easy to share version of their wedding video with just the best bits of the day. This gives the guests a chance to relive the day without watching the entire thing again.  

    Why have a winter wedding?

    White Wedding
    If you’re lucky enough to get a bit of snow on your wedding day, then you will have the perfect scene for your wedding album. It would look beautiful and you will be so delighted with the end result. 

    Everything is earlier
    You’ll get less sunlight in the evening which isn’t necessarily a selling point of the winter season, on the other hand you’ll get to start the party that bit earlier which means you get longer to enjoy it. Also, the light at dusk could make for a magical photo opportunity. 

    Save a bit of money
    A lot of suppliers would give discounts in the winter time so tap into that. Some suppliers are super busy all year round but certainly shop around to see who would do you guys a good deal in the months like January and February, especially if you are going for a weekday wedding.

    More availability
    You have a much better chance of getting the venue of your dreams during winter simply because there is less demand. It is also much more acceptable to have a midweek wedding during the winter as people will find it easier to get off work, provided it’s not too close to Christmas. 

    Seasonal party
    If you have your wedding in mid November or late January your day will be anticipated greatly by your guests. Chances are that most of your guests won’t have too many huge events like a wedding in between summer and winter and if you have it in late January it will give people time to recover from Christmas. 

    Honeymoon goals
    You will get much better honeymoon rates in Winter than you would at other times of the year. Resorts will be less crowded with families because there will be no school holidays and everything will be generally cheaper, flights, accommodation, everything!

    Winter wedding colour palettes

    This time of year is so colourful, you have hundreds of classic combinations available to you, but what if these have been overdone? Or what if your favourite colour doesn’t work? No need to worry, we have a list of less common colour combos that would look great on your big day.

    GREEN, BLUE & SILVER
    This is a sophisticated colour combination that your guests won’t expect, it’s a far cry from the classic green and red and it will look fab on your wedding day. Try blue and silver centrepieces and lots of greenery around the room.

    SILVER, GOLD & CREAM
    Metallics are an extremely popular trend this year popping up everywhere from your local shop window to the Paris fashion week runway. You could decorate your venue with silver fairy lights and gold centerpieces with simple cream table cloths. Rose gold is another popular trend so you could swap it for the gold if you felt like it. Always remember, when it comes to metallics less is usually more.

    TURQUOISE & ORANGE
    This very unexpected colour combination works a treat in decorating a venue. These colours scream trendy and will make your venue super modern looking. It’s a fab colour scheme and definitely not boring. Try turquoise table runners with orange roses in the centrepieces.

    RED, CREAM & WHITE
    This fab colour scheme will give a rich, wintry feel to your venue while still keeping peoples mind on the event itself, you don’t want your guests feeling like it’s all about Christmas. Try white table cloths, cream chair sashes and poinsettias or red roses as your main flower of choice.

    RED, WHITE & GREEN
    This colour scheme is a classic homage to the holidays and it looks absolutely gorgeous. There’s a reason it’s the most popular colour combo for this time of year. Try white table cloths and centrepieces, and dot the room with plenty of holly and mistletoe. You could use baby’s breath and red roses for the floral arrangements.

    Winter wedding favours

    CHRISTMAS TREE ORNAMENT
    This is a great one for future Christmases, give your guests an engraved Christmas decoration that they can hang up for years to come and be reminded of your wonderful day. It’s a very personal gift so if you are inviting guests that wouldn’t cherish it as much as others maybe you could opt for something else on those tables. Either way it’s a lovely memento.   

    PINECONE FIRE STARTERS
    These are absolutely adorable and relatively inexpensive to make. You just coat pinecones in beeswax and put them in individual boxes for your guests with a cheesy love quote like ‘let our love warm your heart’. This will definitely be appreciated during the winter. 

    HANDWARMERS 
    You’ll definitely be popular with your guests with this one. It’s bound to be chilly on a winters day so it shows that you care about their needs and want everybody to have a great time, also they are super cute and can be cheap to buy in bulk. It’s a win-win really. Get them monogrammed with you and your intended’s initials and everyone will be delighted. 

    SNOW GLOBES
    Snow globes are extremely popular and cheap to have made. You could even go DIY with them if you felt like it. You could put a small figurine of a couple getting married inside surrounded with glitter and fake snow. It is bound to be a crowd pleaser and a proper keepsake from your fantastic day.   

    MINI BOTTLES OF DRINK
    The adults at your wedding will definitely appreciate this one. You could go with baileys with a sachet of hot chocolate or coffee it would be delicious the day after the wedding and it would definitely help cure the hangover from the wedding. 

    GINGERBREAD BISCUITS
    This is a super cute idea, have mini gingerbread men in suits or dresses at every place setting they will make a fab pre-dinner nibble for your guests and they stay with the gorgeous wintry theme. 

    ASSORTED CHRISTMAS SWEETS
    This one’s for the DIY brides, just get a load of cute mason jars and fill them with sweets you associate with Christmas. Those big boxes of roses and quality streets that are on sale around Christmas will come in very handy for this and make everything inexpensive yet still cute. You could have your printers make labels for your jars to make it extra personal.

    Spectacular new year's eve inspired ideas

    New Year’s Eve is a fantastic night to have a wedding; everybody is in the mood to celebrate and what better way to ring in the New Year than with a brand new husband or wife. We’ve put together a list of the best New Year’s Eve wedding ideas from across the globe.

    GLITTER
    Add a touch of sparkle to your wedding day. Whether you’re going big or small, glitter is definitely in for New Year’s Eve weddings. Whether there’s a light dusting of it throughout the day or it’s thrown in your face as you walk down the aisle, glitter is always good when it comes to New Year’s Eve. You could even glitz up your bridal party by adding glitter to buttonhole flowers and the wedding party attire; it could even reach your bouquets or buttonholes. 

    PROSECCO AT MIDNIGHT
    This one definitely depends on your budget, but it would be lovely to have a prosecco toast as the clock strikes twelve. Have the bar serve all your guests with a complimentary glass of prosecco at about half 11 and they will be absolutely buzzing for the countdown.

    CLOCK BISCUITS
    This is a super cute idea; give all of your guests a biscuit that has been decorated to look like a clock striking 12. Everyone will appreciate the gesture and it stays with the theme of New Year’s Eve.  It will make for some adorable instagram worthy pictures for sure.

    BALLOON DROP
    This is a great idea for when the clock strikes twelve. Have a load of balloons drop onto the dance floor to turn your wedding into a New Year’s Eve party. Have your videographer take in the whole room and then zoom into the new years kisses happening on the dance floor to make for an amazing wedding highlight video. It will definitely be a memorable moment and it will keep everybody in the party mood.

    A HUGE RENDITION OF AULD LANG SYNE
    Having your whole room of guests serenade you with the classic New Year’s Eve ‘Auld Lang Syne’ would be the cherry on top of an excellent New Year’s Eve wedding. 

    BALLOON DROP
    This is a great idea for when the clock strikes twelve. Have a load of balloons drop onto the dance floor to turn your wedding into a New Year’s Eve party. Have your videographer take in the whole room and then zoom into the new years kisses happening on the dance floor to make for an amazing wedding highlight video. It will definitely be a memorable moment and it will keep everybody in the party mood. 

    NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS
    Put up a huge poster with clips on it and have all your guests names and table numbers on it, ask them to take a photo in your photobooth or have a cameraperson there to take a snap. Then they can write their resolution(s) on the back of the photo and swap it for their name on the clip. It’s a really simple idea that will definitely get people thinking; plus you can have fun with your new husband or wife reading the cringeworthy resolutions.

    Rock those metallics!

    By Niamh Bartley

    Metallics have proven themselves to be huge in weddings this year, they can be versatile in how they are used and many couples have opted to have them as a part  of their celebrations. From the cake to the accessories, we have put together a list  of the different ways they can be used in your dream winter wedding.
     

    WEDDING PARTY
    Make your bridesmaids shimmer in gold sequin dresses or your groomsmen shine in silver ties. This is definitely the easiest way to incorporate metallics into your big day. You could even have your hairstylist put matching gold or silver hair accessories in your bridesmaids hair or have them wear matching jewellery to make the trend pop.

    THE CAKE
    Your wedding cake symbolises your love for your partner. It is also one of the things guests are most excited to see and so you want it to look exciting and definitely unique. If you do not want to spend a fortune having your cake laced in liquid gold, put some edible flowers or berries on it and have them sprayed in edible gold and silver paint. It will look fantastic and your guests will be very pleased.

    DRINKS
    You could have a signature drink topped with edible gold or silver glitter at your drinks reception, it looks super cool and having a signature drink is a major trend for 2017. Your guests will love the pop of colour, you could even opt for colourful metallic glitter in any one of your main wedding colours.

    STATIONERY
    Have metallics play a part in your wedding stationery, from your invites to your guest book you could have matching gold monograms as a symbol of your big day. It adds a touch of elegance and it makes it look as though you spent a fortune. A classic gold pen or silver earrings would also work a treat as a gift for the groomsmen and bridesmaids, sticking with the theme of metallics.

    VENUE DECOR
    Decorate your venue with metallics from centrepieces to floral arrangements. Silver is partcularly good for winter weddings as it adds a nice contrast to the deep colours associated with winter. Metallics also go really well with most colour schemes especially Christmas colours; red and green go with gold and silver very well.

    Brides of Limerick Wedding Industry Awards 2016

    On Sunday, November 20th 2016, 290 of Limerick s finest wedding industry people came out for a night of celebration to see who would walk away with an award at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Limerick.     Limerick s own Catriona Tierney was back again this year as our MC and our very own publisher, April Drew, presented the awards and greeted the award winners as they came on stage.      

    We had the fantastic duo Annie Ruffles decorate the function room and The Snug Photobooth Caravan was set up during the drinks reception which provided a bit of fun for our guests while showcasing the amazing businesses right on our doorstep. The talented Magnificent Moments Photography captured some wonderful moments for us throughout the evening, looking at the photos is like reliving the night.    

    A huge congratulations to our Lifetime Achievement Award winner, Mary Fitzgerald of Fitzgerald s Woodlands House Hotel. The Fitzgerald s also took home the awards for Family Run Wedding Venue of the year as well as Spa of the year 2016 for Revas Spa. All in all a successful night for the clan.    

    The night was a great success for the Brides of Limerick team and we are already putting plans in place for the 2017 ceremony. Congratulations to all the finalists and winners on the night.   

    The 2016 Brides of Limerick Wedding Industry Award Winners are:   

    Kids Focused Wedding Supplier of the Year 2016
    - Last Minute Minders 
       
    Wedding Celebrant of the Year 2016
    - JaYesTa Ceremonies  
       
    Hair Extension Specialist of the Year 2016- Catwalk Limerick    
    Accessory Supplier of the Year 2016    Virginias Bridal    
    Candy Cart Supplier of the Year 2016- Sunshine Candy Carts    
    Hen Party Supplier of the Year 2016- Wedding Heaven     
    Hair Salon of the Year 2016- Obsessed Hair Salon    
    Hair & Make-Up Salon of the Year 2016- Catherine Hickey Make- Up & Hair Studio    
    Joint Ceremony Musician of the Year 2016- Kerry Jane Hurley   
    Joint Ceremony Musician of the Year 2016- Sinead O Brien    
    Honeymoon Provider of the Year 2016- Limerick Travel    
    Bridesmaid Dress Supplier of the Year 2016- Kates Kloset     
    Wedding Car Supplier of the Year 2016- Irish Diamond Limousines    
    Wedding Nail Designer of the Year 2016- The Nail Sanctuary     
    Photographic Wedding Spread of the Year 2016 - Mrs RedHead     
    Wedding image of the Year featured in Brides of Limerick -Gary Collins Photography    
    Newcomer of the Year Photographer 2016- The Tilted Tripod   
    Wedding stationery supplier of the year 2016- Maeve Keavey Creations     
    Runner Up Function Room of the Year 2016- Hotel Woodstock    
    Function Room of the Year 2016-  Charleville Park Hotel     
    Garden Space of the Year 2016-  Abbey Court Hotel     
    Most Stylish Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- Radisson Blu Hotel and Spa Limerick    
    Newly Renovated Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- The Oakwood Hotel    
    Bridal Suite of the Year 2016- Castletroy Park Hotel     
    Runner Up Family wedding venue of the year 2016- Greenhills Hotel   
    Family Run Wedding Venue of the Year 2016 Fitzgerald s Woodlands House Hotel   
    Runner Up Hair Stylist of the Year 2016- Sarah Hehir     
    Hair Stylist of the Year 2016- Ciara Downes McNamara    
    Unique Beauty Service of the Year 2016- Sparkles Whitening    
    Wedding Band of the Year 2016- Escapade    
    Mobile Beauty Supplier of the Year 2016- Beauty Brought 2 You     
    Flowergirl Dress Supplier of the Year 2016- Marettes    
    Make Up Artist of the Year 2016- Laura Halvey     
    Videographer of the Year 2016- SES Digital Wedding Video    
    DJ of the Year 2016- DJ Jonathan   
    Overall Wedding Entertainment Specialist of the Year 2016- Paudie Walsh     
    Runner Up Wedding Cake Designer of the Year 2016- The Chic Cake Boutique     
    Wedding Cake Designer of the Year 2016- Celina s Cakes     
    Mother of the Bride Supplier of the Year 2016- Sinead s Boutique     
    Photo Booth Supplier of the Year 2016- Photobooth 365   
    Beauty Salon of the Year 2016- La Bella Beauty     
    Suit Supplier of the Year 2016- Esquire Formal Menswear   
    Wedding Alterations Service of the Year 2016- The Zip Yard Limerick     
    Unique Wedding Entertainer of the Year 2016- The Singing Chef    
    Runner up Wedding Florist of the Year 2016- Special Petals     
    Wedding Florist of the Year 2016- Ring O Roses    
    Jeweller of the Year 2016- Matthew Stephens   
    Spa of the Year 2016- Revas Spa (The Woodlands)   
    Wedding Lingerie Supplier of the Year 2016- Vamp Lingerie    
    Wedding Styling Company of the Year 2016- Kitture Weddings    
    Alternative Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- AnnaCarriga Killaloe     
    Urban Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- Limerick Strand Hotel     
    Boutique Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- Absolute Hotel Limerick    
    Runner Up Wedding Coordinator of the Year 2016- Claire Coughlan (The Inn at Dromoland)    
    Wedding Coordinator of the Year 2016- Barbara Riordan (Charleville Park)    
    Waterside Venue of the Year 2016- The Lakeside Hotel       
    Banqueting Manager of the Year 2016- Paul Walsh (Springfort Hall)      
    Most Scenic Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- Aherlow House Hotel     
    Newcomer Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- The Killaloe Hotel and Spa                             
    Wedding Dress Designer of the Year 2016- Orlaith Carroll     
    Wedding Planner of the Year 2016- Samantha Harding Events    
    Wedding Event of the Year 2016- The Midwest Bridal Exhibition    
    Wedding Dress Supplier of the Year 2016- The Bridal Emporium     
    Runner Up Wedding Image of the Year 2016- Black Diamond Photography    
    Wedding Image of the Year 2016- Horsfall Photography     
    Runner Up Photographer of the Year 2016- Baker Photography     
    Photographer of the Year 2016- Evelyn O Connor Photography     
    Country House Hotel of the Year 2016- Springfort Hall    
    Most Romantic Wedding Venue of the Year 2016- The Armada Hotel    
    Wedding Venue of the Year in Limerick 2016- Castletroy Park Hotel   
    Wedding Venue of the Year Outside Limerick 2016- The Inn at Dromoland     
    Overall Wedding Venue of the Year 2016  Bunratty Castle Hotel    
    5-star Service Award 2016- Dan Lawless     
    5-star Service Award 2016 - MM Cookies     
    5-star Service Award 2016- O Donovan Productions    
    Overall Wedding Supplier of the Year 2016 (small business)- Flowers by Karen     
    Overall Wedding Supplier of the Year 2016 (large business)- Keanes Jewellers       

    SPECIAL AWARDS    

    Wedding of the Year 2016- Siobhan and Ger Lyons    
    Newcomer Business of the Year 2016- Annie Ruffles Vintage Creations    
    Most Established Business of the Year 2016- Sefton House Bridal    
    Wedding Personality of the Year Male 2016- Paul Mullins    
    Wedding Personality of the Year Female 2016- Jennifer Bourke (Little White Dress)    
    Business Woman of the Year 2016- Sinead Downes (Sinead s Boutique)    
    Businessman of the Year 2016- Michael Phelan (PVP Digital)    
    Editor s Choice Award 2016 Chantilly Lace      

    Lifetime Achievement Award   

    Mary Fitzgerald (The Woodlands)

    A cherished love of horses was the mane event for Orlaith and David s proposal

    Orlaith McGrath & David O Doherty  


    June 11, 2016 - St. Joseph s Church, Clarina & Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel & Spa  


    Orlaith Mc Grath, a Clarina native, met David O Doherty from Patrickswell, at the forge in Clarina when the pair were both very young. Knowing how important Orlaith s pony of 16 years was to her, David made provisions to include Alcapone in his big New Year s Eve proposal in 2014. Dave had asked me to come down to the stables to help feed the horses. He left for a few minutes and went back up to the house to turn on the water pump. Dave returned walking my favourite horse who had white ribbons tied onto his head-collar with a white velvet bag with a note inside saying will u marry me. By the time I took the note out of the bag and read it, Dave was on one knee with the ring in his hand, remembers Orlaith fondly.  


    A date was soon set for June 11, 2016 for a beautiful summer ceremony in St. Joseph s Church, Clarina followed by a reception at the prestigious Fitzgerald s Woodlands House Hotel & Spa. Orlaith wore a stunning dress (which she added lace to) from Virginia s Bridal.  


    THE WEDDING PARTY

    Orlaith s gal pals Kimberley Mullins, Marissa Power, Sinead Brennan and Siobhan Griffin joined her at the altar. David s groomsmen included Vincent O Doherty, James O Doherty, Jason O Doherty, Terence Mc Grath and Craig O Connor. The important role of the flowergirls was given to Grace Kenny and Bryanne O Doherty alongside pageboys Ronan Mc Donogh and Ben Basnet.  


    THE WEDDING TEAM

    It was all systems go for some of Limerick s finest wedding vendors on the morning of the big day. Catherine Hickey s incredible team took care of the bridal party s hair and makeup along with the help of Mel s Mobile Makeup. Catherine made me feel so calm in the run up to my wedding. She accommodated me with every hair and makeup trial and worked with me until I was 100 percent happy. She is absolutely brilliant and her work is flawless.  


    The bride s stunning look was topped off with a veil from Virginia s Bridal. Esquire Menswear provided the dapper groom and groomsmen with their suits. The wedding party was taken to the church in style with transport provided by Irish Diamond Limousines.    


    The personal touches throughout the day were set off with invitations from McNamara Printers, Shannon and with a personalised caricature guest sign board by Ralph McMahon. A photo booth from Photobooth 365 proved to be a huge crowd pleaser with the guests.  


    A SPECIAL TREAT

    A few days after the wedding Orlaith and David went to Ballybunion beach in Kerry with their horses and got some beautiful shots of them. This was another very special moment for them and Orlatih got to wear her beautiful dress again.  


    Tell us about your wedding at the beautiful Fitzgerald s Woodlands
     Hotel
    We chose Fitzgerald s Woodlands House Hotel as both David and I have very fond memories of having celebrated special family occasions there over the years. On the day, the management and staff went above and beyond to ensure that everything went perfectly.    

    www.woodlands-hotel.ie

    Alternative guide to stag nights

    #StagNight #Wedding #Bestman

    If the thought of stumbling into the chipper with all the lads wearing matching novelty t shirts horrifies you, or if you cringe at the thought of being tied to a pole while your intoxicated stags dance around you and chant. We have compiled an alternative list of activities and ideas for you and your merry men to enjoy here in Ireland if you are happy to celebrate in the emerald isle. For all the best men out there in distress, we give you the alternative guide to stag nights.  


    Physical Activities
       

    Water sport

    In Limerick alone, you have the choice of sailing, wind-surfing, and kayaking across Lough Derg. If you want to go further afield, surfing lessons in coastal locations nearby, like lahinch or Kilkee are a popular stag party option.

    Archery

    Release your adventurous side by shooting arrows from 30 ft. or more! Channel your inner Robin Hood while learning skills and bonding with the lads.

    Paintballing

    Paintballing is also an option that is available in the Shannon Region. Feel the adrenaline while having unbelievable craic. Although if you are the groom beware, as you will be the main target!

    Clay pigeon shooting

    If you are after something a bit more hard core, then check out supervised shooting activities. Clay bird shooting, air-rifle shooting, and interactive shooting scenarios are available in the Limerick area. An ideal way to let off some wedding stress in a supervised environment!

    Go-Karting

    No stag-do guide would be complete without mentioning Go-Karting. Limerick offers thrilling karting and drift karting, where you can slide sideways around corners and learn drifting skills. For stag groups, endurance racing is also available.

    Golfing

    If you want a chilled out stag party, hitting the golf course is the way to go. Ireland is famous for its lush green golf courses so why not make the most of them! The Shannon region is littered with various courses, from Abbeyfeale, Adare, Castletroy, Dromoland, Newcastle West and Rathbane.    


    General Ideas
     

    Go to the races

    Heading to the races is a fantastic night out, guaranteed to thrill your stags and maybe even make a fortune if you are lucky. The Limerick Racecourse offers great packages and deals for stag parties, the stag goes free based on group numbers of over 15 people or more! There are also plenty of unique elements such as The Wheel of Fortune game to win great prizes.
    For more info: www.limerickraces.ie

    Barbecue
     
    The way to a man s heart is through his stomach, so why not organise a barbeque in honour of the groom? Whether you all contribute one food item to the cause or just bring along beverages for the ice coolers, you can be sure your stags will have a feast to remember.

    Pub Crawl

    What Irish stag party would be complete without a pub crawl? Whether its music, drink or craic you are after, Irish pubs and bars are well equipped to deliver. Galway city has some of the best pubs in Ireland, including Coyotes American themed late bar & club. Stag groups are greeted with complimentary champagne or shots on arrival and a reserved area with no cover charge.
    For more info: www.coyotes.ie

    Gentleman s whiskey and cigars night

    Is the groom in question a classy man? If yes, why not organise a gentleman s corner with his nearest and dearest bonding together with their favourite whiskey etc. We have a feeling this one will leave the old stories and memories flowing into the early hours.

    Visit a craft beer brewery

    The craft beer industry in Ireland has exploded! With plenty festivals around the country, including Ireland s largest 3 day festival which takes place in the RDS in August 2016, you can be sure to have an experience unlike any other. Alternatively, your group could get a tour of a brewery if you want an educational edge to your stag-do.

    An island proposal caused Linda s heart to skip a few beats

    By Michaela Keating 

    Linda McEvoy & John O Sullivan  


    April 1, 2016  The Falls Hotel, Ennistymon
     


    As the saying goes, love is found in the most unexpected places, something proven by Linda McEvoy and John O Sullivan when they attended a mutual friends thirtieth birthday party. The pair instantly felt a connection and arranged a date for the following evening. Fast forward a few years, the pair have come a long way since their first date.


    Linda and John are parents to two beautiful children, Maggie and Tommy, and the family now reside in Sixmilebridge, Co. Clare. For John, popping the question to Linda was the perfect way to celebrate the birth of their second child.  


    The Tipperary born bride remembers the proposal fondly. We had been together for four years and had just had our second baby. We decided to go for a weekend away to Galway just the two of us. John decided that we were going to get a plane to Inis Mor. It was the scariest flight I have ever been on. We took a horse and cart around the island and then went for a walk around Dun Aengus Fort where John got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. It was so exciting I will never forget it for as long as I live.


    Following the excitement of their engagement the couple set a date. Sharing the day with 230 guests, April 1, 2016 would be a date to remember at their wedding venue, the Falls Hotel.  


    THE WEDDING PARTY

    The pair were joined at the alter by Linda s sister and bridesmaid Karina Mc Evoy and groomsman Cormac Darcy. Their day was made extra special as their two children Maggie and Tommy took on the very important roles of flowergirl and pageboy.  


    THE WEDDING TEAM

    With the skills of family members, the pair was able to pull off a stunning day thanks to their many talents and DIY skills. Linda s mother and sister made the cake to an exceptional standard while Karina also organised the flower arrangements for the day. Linda s dad made a sweet cart for all to enjoy. I am a very lucky person to have such a talented family. They have done so much for me through the whole wedding and it saved both me and John a lot of money, we would never have been able to have all those special extras if it was not for them!


    The bride herself created her wedding invitations. I addressed
    them as Maggie and Tommy wish to invite you to their Mammy and Daddys wedding! The bride stunned in a gown from De Stafford Bridal, Nenagh. The men looked slick in their suits from Esquire Menswear. A nine piece brass band called Brass & Co. kept the dance floor jiving all night long. The fabulous images captured on the day were taken by the talented Paul of Paul Mullins Photography.  


    The family took a trip to Denver, Colorado for six days over to
    friends and then spent five days in Orlando, Florida.


    Tell us about your experience at The Falls Hotel
    The Falls was amazing, the service first of all was outstanding. I could not fault it in any way. The food was amazing, every one of my guests had nothing but compliments for everything in the hotel from the rooms, food, staff and all round service. The day we got married it rained a lot and the falls at the hotel looked spectacular. We actually had our wedding service in the hotel itself and to say it looked amazing would be an understatement. They had everything I had asked them for and even more they made the place look like a dream!    

    www.fallshotel.ie
     


    How was your experience working with photographer Paul Mullins?
     
    Paul was so much fun to have on the day, he really relaxed everyone and I was really surprised how important he is in a wedding. He seemed to set a great time schedule for everything and we all just seemed to flow with him on the day with no stress, which every bride wants on her wedding day! I really cannot stress enough how great a photographer he was. He really got into the moment with his photos and I think he really enjoyed himself too. It always seemed relaxed and we got some really fun photos because of that.    

    www.Paulmullinsphotography.ie
     


    Randomers
     

    First holiday together?

    Lahinch Co. Clare

    If you were to marry a celeb who would it be?

    Shemar Moore

    If your hubby was to marry a celeb
    who would it be?
    Princess Leia

    Funniest moment during the wedding?

    Me diving off the stage for Hungry Eyes and being carried in the air by the guests. Also trying to climb up and down the rocks to get pictures at The Falls. Paul, the photographer, had to put me on his shoulders to get me down and all our guests were watching from the hotel window, they all said it was hilarious!

    Favourite memory?

    My favorite part of the day was our wedding service it was so touching, heartwarming and funny. There was not a dry eye in the house.

    AUTUMN WEDDING FAVOUR IDEAS

    Autumn is one of the most beautiful seasons of the year with its myriad of gorgeous colours, crisp winds and fabulous sunsets it is a popular time for weddings. Wedding favours are a little way of thanking your friends and family for celebrating your special day with you. Obviously they do not have to be seasonal however the autumn time offers so many lovely gift ideas it is far too tempting not to send your guests home with some precious autumn inspired gifts.  


    Caramel Apples
    Who does not love a sticky, sweet caramel covered apple? These delicious treats are a staple of the season and you can have them smothered in chocolate too. Wrap them up in clear cellophane and tie with ribbons that match the theme of your wedding or use coloured cellophane and tie up with brown string.  


    Jams

    There is nothing quite like settling in on a chilly autumnal evening with some tea and toast covered in thick, sweet jam. Pack some apple or blackberry jam into coloured jars and put the guest s names on the front. Jars of honey would work just as well.  


    Picture Frames

    Photo frames are perfect favours for weddings during any season. For autumn weddings rustic frames are the perfect choice either in plain wood or painted purple, dark orange, red, gold or dark green. 


    Scented Candles

    Candles make a nice gift for any occasion because they’re simple yet sweet. They are an easy yet effective way to decorate any room and scented candles in typical autumn colours like dark orange, purple, burgundy and black are perfect presents to send your guests home with. If you wanted you could include candle holders either plain clear glass or mix and match colours for example place a burgundy candle inside a black glass candle holder. 

    A short guest list made for the sweetest wedding day for Lesley Ann Harnett & Joe Kelly

    By Michaela Keating

    Lesley Ann & Joe 


    June 23, 2016  Holy Trinity Church, Templeglantine & The Brehon Hotel, Killarney


    Photos courtesy of Baker Photography


    Lesley Ann Harnett met the love of her life, Joe Kelly, on a night out in her home town of Abbeyfeale. The pair instantly hit it off and ten years later, Joe popped the all-important question in Paris with the help of a sparkling diamond from Matthew Stephens jewelers. During our trip there he suggested one morning that we go up to the top of the Eiffel Tower. When we reached the top floor, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. He produced a love lock which said Will you marry me? on it and also a photo book with pictures all of our memories together throughout the years since we first met. After that we walked to the love lock bridge in Paris and attached on the love lock. It was magical.  


    Following an intimate proposal, the couple decided to plan an intimate wedding day joined by just 27 of their nearest and dearest to be celebrated on June 23, 2016 with a ceremony at the Holy Trinity Church, Templeglantine followed by a reception at the stunning Brehon Hotel, Killarney.  


    THE WEDDING PARTY
    Lesley Ann s bridesmaids included the lovely Linda Harnett Susan Harnett. Joe s groomsmen were the handsome Denis Kelly and John Kelly. The beautiful flower girls were show stoppers and including; Eabha O Connor, Chloe Youta, Kirsten Brosnan and Vanessa Youta alongside the charming page boys Cameron Youta and JJ Kelly.  


    THE WEDDING TEAM
    From start to finish, every detail of the day was meticulously planned. The pair carefully chose the talented Rose Baker of Baker Photography to capture the images they would forever treasure from their day. Rose is such a true professional and made us feel so at ease when taking the photos. She has such a great eye for detail and picked the most picturesque locations for our photos. We cannot thank her enough.


    The groom himself used his incredible baking skills to create the wedding cake which went down a treat with the guests. Joe s creative contributions did not end there. He created button bouquets for the flower girls, ordering buttons and wire online and spending hours creating each bouquet.  


    Tie the Knot Weddings
    in Abbeyfeale took care of all the
    floral and decor needs on the day. The beautiful bridal party wear was from the fabulous Kate s Kloset, Askeaton. Caroline the owner was so fabulous to deal with. She picked out a selection of dresses that she knew would suit the girls and helped us in choosing the colours. We decided to go for the same style dress for both bridesmaids but in different colours. Linda s dress was a soft lilac and Susan s dress was a blush pink. The suits were hired out from Connollys Menswear. They had a lovely selection of suits to choose from and they had everything so well organised for us when we picked the suits up.


    The couple booked their honeymoon with Torc Travel, returning to Paris, their favourite destination.  


    Memorable Moments
    The day was full of special moments for Lesley Ann and Joe. Our favourite memory was meeting each other at the top of the church. We had such a mixture of nerves and excitement and we were so happy to see each other. Another favourite would be when Joe s sister Mary and her daughter Eabha surprised us both on the wedding night by singing a French song, La Vie en Rose. They went to so much trouble learning the French words and pronunciation and they sang it so beautifully. It meant so much to us that they did that.  


    Special touches
    The day was made extra special with many personal touches threaded throughout including the Lego men on the page boys button holes to the button bouquets for the flower girls. The newlyweds kindly looked after their guests by gifting them an afternoon tea voucher for the Brehon Hotel. A lot of them used their vouchers on the day we were leaving the hotel. It was a lovely surprise for them.  


    Tell us about your wedding venue,
    The Brehon Hotel, Killarney   As our wedding was very small with just 29 of us, the Brehon hotel was very accommodating and allowed us to hold our wedding in the private dining room. We worked with the wedding coordinator Kelly Ann up until our big day and she was so helpful and organised so much for us. The drinks reception was beautiful. Our wedding reception room was also decorated so beautifully. The lighting and arrangement of flowers was fabulous. They even set up a kiddies corner for the nine children and put in some games for them. The food was out of this world and they could not give us enough. The staff were so friendly and helpful. We also held our after party barbecue there and again the food was outstanding. They made our wedding day so special.  

    www.thebrehon.com
       


    How was your experience with your
    photographer Rose from Baker Photography?   It was a pleasure to work with Rose Baker. She is a true professional. In the lead up to the wedding she made sure to take the time to meet us to discuss what location we would like for our wedding photos. On the day of the wedding Rose was so efficient in organising everyone for photos. She was brilliant with the children and managed to make them laugh every time she wanted to take a picture of them. She picked the most beautiful settings for our wedding photos and she made the whole process so easy and enjoyable for us. We now have a beautiful wedding album that we will cherish forever. We would highly recommend her.    

    www.bakerphotography.ie

    A magical day to remember for Siobhan and Kevin at the charming Charleville Park Hotel

    Siobhan Daly & Kevin Fitzgerald  


    July 23, 2016  St. Bartholemews Church, Dromcollogher & Charleville Park Hotel


    Photography courtesy of Cardam Photography 


    In a real life case of the girl next door, Siobhan Daly and Kevin Fitzgerald, both from Dromcollogher, Co Limerick were childhood sweethearts. Growing up just four doors apart, the pair realised there was chemistry between them in their teenage years and have since built a happy life together. The newlyweds are parents to two beautiful girls; Emily and Aisling. It was a romantic proposal for Siobhan as Kevin bought his bride-to-be a particularly sparkly present for Christmas 2014. We were sitting down with a glass of wine in front of a cozy fire. Kevin had put my engagement ring inside a Santa sock hanging on the fire place and he told me that he had another small present for me. I reached in and when I took it out and turned around he was on one knee and asked me to marry him. Of course I said yes after the tears!  


    With the sparkle of a stunning Matthew Stephens diamond leading the way; it was time to plan a wedding with the Christmas gift that kept on giving. The date for the big day was set for July 23, 2016 with the ceremony at St. Bartholemews Church, Dromcollogher followed by an unforgettable reception at the prestigious Charleville Park Hotel.  


    THE WEDDING PARTY

    The stunning bridal party was made up of Siobhan s closest gal pals including her sister Anita Daly as chief bridesmaid and bridesmaids Christina Fitzgerald, Majella Costello and Debbie Watson. By Kevin s side were his brothers, bestman Martin Fitzgerald, groomsmen Brian Fitzgerald, Thomas Fitzgerald and new brother-in-law Jonathon Daly. The bride and grooms darling daughters Emily and Aisling were flower girls and were accompanied by two handsome pageboys, Nathan Morrissey and Jonathon Flynn.  


    THE WEDDING TEAM
    Throughout the day, Damian Byrne of Cardam Photography was on hand to snap all of the special moments for the couple. SES Digital videoed the day for the pair to look back on every moment. Old School House Flowers provided the stunning floral arrangements, seamlessly adding a pop of colour where necessary. The invites were created with love by the fabulous Maeve Keavey Creations.  


    A SPECIAL MENTION
    Wedding vendors and suppliers go above and beyond for couples planning their wedding but for Siobhan and Kevin, their experience from start to finish with their wedding venue Charleville Park Hotel was a complete dream. The bride had nothing but kind words to say of Barbara, wedding coordinator and her team at the hotel. We cannot thank you and your team enough for the care, kindness and pure professionalism that you gave and showed us on our big day. We were truly blown away by the whole experience. From the first day we met you on that very wet and windy winter evening you made us feel very welcome and we felt very at ease with you. You truly are a very nice person to deal with and we have talked very highly of you to anyone who has asked us about our dealing with the Charleville Park Hotel.  


    How was your experience working
    with Damian from CardamPhotography?
    Damian was a pleasure to work with. We met him at a wedding fair at the University of Limerick and we immediately decided to book him for our day. There was just something about him and his work that we were drawn to. He is a very nice and genuine person and his photos are outstanding. The morning of the wedding he made us feel at ease and worked with any requests we had for photos. He was a pure professional at the church and also afterwards for photos of us and our bridal party and families. I would highly recommend him to any couples getting married and for any occasion for that matter.  

    www.cardamphotography.com
       


    Tell us about your experience
    at the Charleville Park Hotel
    The day itself was fantastic from the warm red carpet welcome we got, to the beautifully laid out drink/finger food reception, the absolutely stunning ballroom, to the bridal suite and the amazing food. The food was absolutely perfect and delicious. The waiting staff were brilliant with swift service from table to table. The late night food was also a welcome treat and got huge compliments from all our guests. It was hugely important to us that our two little girls, Emily and Aisling, were well looked after and they were. It was an absolute pleasure and we will always be grateful for all the work that was put in to make our day so special.    

    www.charlevilleparkhotel.com
     


    RANDOMERS
     

    First holiday together?
    Sydney, Australia  

    Funniest moment during the wedding?
    Bestman s speech  

    Whom did you tell you were engaged first?
    Our families  

    Song you walked down the aisle to?
    Crazy Little Thing Called Love

    Top ten movies to watch before your wedding

    By Emma Doran  


    What better way to bond with your bridesmaids than over a bowl of popcorn (and wine) while watching a movie? Get your onesies out as we are about to list the top 10 wedding movies that you should watch with your bridesmaids before your wedding day!  


    27 dresses

    Imagine being a bridesmaid 27 times? Well that is the case for Katherine Heigl s character Jane, in this hilariously girly rom-com where she ends up planning her younger sister s wedding. It just so happens that her sister, Tess, is marrying Jane s prince charming!  


    Bride Wars

    Childhood best friends (played by Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson) have been planning their weddings since they were young, but what happens when they both choose the same venue and accidentally, the same date? WAR! Guaranteed to give you a six pack from laughing!  


    Bridesmaids

    Dubbed as the female version of the hangover, it is a movie that will have tears streaming down your face from laughing! Annie (Kristen Wiig), is going through a tough time in her life when she finds out her lifelong BFF Lillian (Maya Rudolph) is getting married. Although she is the maid of honour, she is constantly competing with, and comparing herself to perfect Helen (Rose Byrne), one of the bridesmaids and Lillian s new best friend. Need I mention that the hilarious Melissa McCarthy is also a bridesmaid? A brilliant movie, perfect for a girly night in.  


    The Wedding Planner

    An ambitious and hard-working wedding planner Mary, played by the stunning Jennifer Lopez, finds herself in a bit of a predicament when she falls in love with one of her client s husband s! (eye candy, Matthew McConaughey) Will Mary be able to keep her feelings to herself or will she finally get to be the bride?  


    The Proposal

    Margaret Tate, played by Sandra Bullock, is an executive editor in chief of a book publishing company. After violating terms of her work visa, she faces being deported to her native Canada. She blackmails her assistant, Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds) into acting as her fiance to keep her from being deported. Initially planning on resuming to their lives after Tate s visa issues are resolved, their relationship blossoms and not all goes according to plan. With plenty of unexpected twists, this movie is a must see!  


    Mamma Mia

    If you are planning a destination wedding, you will get plenty of inspiration from this movie! Set in the picturesque Greek island of Kalokairi, Meryl Streep heads the cast, playing the role of single mother Donna Sheridan. Bride-to-be Sophie Sheridan secretly invites three men from her mother s past in hope of meeting her real father and having him escort her down the aisle on her big day. A musical romantic comedy film adapted from the 1999 West End musical of the same name, based on the songs of successful pop group ABBA. A personal favourite with an unexpected ending. This movie will have you all singing and dancing for the rest of the night.  


    Father of the bride

    A heart-warming family comedy starring Steve Martin who plays the overprotective father George Banks. He struggles to come to terms with the fact that his daughter is getting married and finds himself in the midst of wedding planning. A classic film with some laugh-out-loud moments.  


    Wedding Crashers

    Jeremy (Vince Vaughn) and John (Owen Wilson) are divorce mediators who spend their free time crashing wedding receptions. The hilarious duo manage to charm vulnerable women and crash numerous weddings until they find themselves in a bit of trouble! This movie had me in tears and it has plenty of unexpected twists. An original storyline and a must-see!  


    My Best Friend s wedding

    Starring Julia Roberts and Cameron Diaz, it is the perfect girly rom-com. Childhood friends Julianne and Michael made a promise to marry each other if they were both still single at aged 28, but four days before Julianne s (Julia Roberts) 28th birthday, Michael (Dermot Mulroney) announces his engagement. Realising she is in love with him, she plans to stop the wedding at all costs, but being maid of honour might make this plan a lot more difficult than she originally thought! An entertaining movie that will have you in stitches.  


    What happens in Vegas

    Last, but certainly not least, a comedy starring Cameron Diaz and Ashton Kutcher. Two strangers find themselves accidentally getting hitched in Las Vegas! Their personalities clash completely but an unexpected issue forces them to stay together. An entertaining and funny movie from beginning to end.

    History was made as Aoibheann and Ger became the first couple to wed at The Killaloe Hotel and Spa

    Aoibheann Bradley & Ger McEnery


    June 11, 2016   The Killaloe Hotel & Spa
     


    Photography by Philip Bourke


    Aoibheann Bradley, a Caherdavin native and Ger McEnery, from West Limerick were celebrating Oktoberfest in our nation s capital when they were introduced through friends a number of years ago. The couple are parents to a beautiful nine month old baby boy, Seamus. Ger, ever the romantic, took his girlfriend back to the scene of their first date, Killiney, to ask her to spend the rest of her life with him.


    The date was set for June 11, 2016 and plans were in full swing.   Halfway through the organising the original hotel they had booked went into receivership leaving them high and dry. They had four months to get a venue for June. We had recently moved down to Ballina so we knew the new Killaloe Hotel was opening, and we were hoping that they would have no weddings booked in for June. We were very lucky that they did not so we saw it while it was still being built and we knew it was going to be perfect.  


    We had complete confidence in Catherine
    and Jim. Every time we called over to the hotel they walked us around and showed us their vision and the progress, and we just knew it was the right place for us. They were very passionate about the food and supporting local, things that were important to us so that stood out more than the scaffolding!    


    Aoibheann and Ger celebrated their day with a humanist ceremony on the terrace of The Killaloe Hotel and Spa followed by reception drinks in the garden and dinner. The pair kept the bridal party small and intimate with Aine McCormack taking on the role as the adorable flowergirl on the day.  


    Aoibheann s mother added her personal touch to her daughter s wedding day by making the bottom layer of the wedding cake while The Derg, Killaloe made the top two layers. Some of the stunning floral arrangements were made by Lavinia s Floral Design.


    The bridal party was beautified by Caroline of the Killaloe Hotel and Spa, with hair done by Sean of The Greene Room. Emma in Vanilla Browns beauty salon at The Absolute Hotel provided the spa treatments prior to the wedding. The mother of the bride stunned in an outfit from Amore Mio, Killaloe. Each important moment was captured by photographer Philip Bourke.        


    Tell us about your experience
    at The Killaloe Hotel & Spa
    From the very first time I called in, the hotel were absolutely fantastic. They have been so accommodating, friendly and professional. They thought of things and touches for the day that I would not ever have considered, and we have received so many compliments from our guests on the accommodation, staff and especially the food. Some have even come back on their holidays! They were brilliant with the kids and kept them all happy and entertained. Everything on the day went so smoothly, we did not have to worry about anything . Pauline and Catherine did a fantastic job of making sure everything was perfect.  

    www.thekillaloe.ie

    How to Add Pumpkins to Your Autumn Wedding

    When someone hears the word autumn usually the first things that come to mind are fallen leaves, woolly scarves, hot drinks and pumpkins. Lots and lots of pumpkins, the season is not complete without them. If your big day is close to or on Halloween pumpkins are expected to make an appearance. If you are looking to include this seasonal vegetable in your wedding but are not sure how to or even how much or how little to add we can help. Below are a list of ways to bring them into the event.  


    Wedding stationery

    If you do not actually want to include a real pumpkin you can always have them in your stationary like the wedding invites, seating cards or the menus. Or all of them as it is quite a subtle way of incorporating them so you can have it as a running theme for all your wedding stationery.  


    Centrepieces

    Hollowed out pumpkins will also make wonderful centrepieces painted or unpainted. As the evening draws in light them up with scented candles and this will cast a lovely warm glow. They can have some designs carved into them such as Mr. & Mrs. Or have mini pumpkins among your chosen centrepiece.  


    Aisle decoration

    If you are looking to include actual physical pumpkins in the decor you can line small ones all along the aisle either hollowed out and lit with candles or decorated with a light material and flowers or grapevines. It adds a certain rustic elegance which is perfect for an autumnal wedding.  


    Pumpkin Vases
    This might sound a bit odd but it is a very innovative way to include them. It is also very straightforward, simply hollow out the pumpkin and place a bouquet of flowers inside. To make the pumpkin compliment the flowers paint them in different colours like white or gold and if you want something really eye-catching cover them in glitter!

    Having The Wheels Robbed From Her Car Was The Perfect Excuse For Clara and Pauric to Have a First Date

    Clara Tierney & Pauric Marray  


    April 8, 2016   Rathsallagh House Co. Wicklow



    Clara Tierney from Tipperary Town and Pauric Marray, from Doohamlet, Co. Monaghan first met when the groom interviewed his future bride for a job. Clara recalls the defining moment where the pair knew they should give it a go. I got the job and we worked together for around four years. I handed in my notice and it finally dawned on us that we might miss each other when I left, so we began dating and we have never looked back. Our first date was under the guise of a driving lesson but as fate would have it someone literally stole all four wheels off my car the night before our lesson, so we ended up going on a proper date instead. The couple began dating and it was clear that they were headed for a forever type of thing.    


    Never one to do things by the book, Clara was set against a traditional proposal on dates such as her birthday or Valentine s Day. Pauric had a list of occasions where I knew he would never propose; birthdays, holidays, Christmas, Valentines and so on. So, I arrived home from work on a Wednesday evening, very late after getting held up in the office and he was waiting with music playing and he hugged me and asked if I would spend the rest of my life with him. He had the obligatory bottle of Moet on ice and our favourite dinner and wine ordered in and a cheeky Thank you card! Pauric further surprised his fiancée with a trip to Amsterdam to create a custom made ring for his bride-to-be.


    With the perfect proposal in the bag, it was time to start planning the perfect wedding. The engaged couple set a date a date for April 8, 2016 to share their special day with their 150 nearest and dearest, with the Ceremony and reception to be held at Rathsallagh House, Co. Wicklow.  


    THE WEDDING TEAM

    From the early morning preparation, Angela and Noreen from Horsfall Photography were there to capture special and candid moments of the wedding preparation along with the most important moments and images throughout the entire day. The stunning flowers were provided by Austen Flowers and the amazing wedding cake was made by Helen McCann of Primrose Bakery. Clara s bridesmaid Elaine Finnan used her professional skills to do the brides make up while Kate Donnelly Make Up beautified the rest of the bridal party.  


    SPECIAL TOUCHES

    We created a hashtag for the day for our friends to share photos #eatdrinkandbemarray. It was lovely to see them all and look back on them during the honeymoon. We also used old video boxes for our centre pieces, where we designed the movie sleeves from our favourite films with our guests as the starring roles. Instead of ceremony booklets, we put together a sort of photo book, which in an abstract way reflected the order of ceremony. We used images of quotes from the readings and songs we had chosen and put together a collage of some photos of things that had lead us to our wedding day. We also asked all the guests to take part in the warming of our rings at the start of the ceremony and my little cousin James was given the all-important job of making sure no one bolted with them as they went from guest to guest!  


    THE HONEYMOON

    The pair embarked on an enviable honeymoon after their dream wedding. We went on the Monday after the wedding and had three weeks of pure bliss. We started off in Kuala Lumpur; from there we did a ten day bespoke tour of Borneo. We visited the wildlife packed Kinabatangan River and Bako National Park, two of the most famous orangutan sanctuaries in the world and some charming sights in Sarawak and Sabah. From the wildlife and jungles of Borneo, we treated ourselves to five nights of paradise in the Maldives. We finished off the honeymoon with a quick stop over in Istanbul for some city sights and retail therapy.  


    MEMORABLE MOMENTS
    The newlyweds day was filled with cherished moments, from the speeches at the reception to surprise performances. My cousin Niall did an amazing and theatrical reading of a poem called How falling in love is like owning a dog. We also asked our friend Paula to perform her favourite speech, as sort of the reflection for our ceremony. Normally, it is performed after several glasses of champagne and a coaxing to the microphone from the band but we said we would officially start off the day on a good note with the To ships speech. The best thing was that none of the girls or her mother, who was also at the wedding, knew she was doing a reading. I think her mother nearly fell off her seat when Paula s name was called to perform. That and a truly awful rendition of Home and Away in the residents bar in the wee hours of the morning!    


    How great was it to work with
    Horsfall Photography?
    Angela and Noreen were great fun to work with. We had to battle the rain that fell on our wedding day, but Angela and Noreen showed great enthusiasm, determination and patience. We even managed to get some pictures outside in the beautiful grounds of Rathsallagh when the sun shone for all of two minutes between our main course and dessert! The work rate of Angela and Noreen has to be seen to be believed! They breezed through the crowds capturing some beautiful moments of things that as the bride and groom you miss on the day. We couldn’t be happier with the results!  

    www.horsfallphotography.com

    Our Favourite Autumn Theme

    By Emma Doran  


    We recently discovered the copper/metallic wedding theme and fell in love! This trend is beautiful and would look great in any venue.      


    Rose gold table runner

    I saw one of these on Pinterest and immediately fell in love. A table runner is the perfect way to get creative on your wedding day. You could have rose gold or a glittery rose gold table runner running right down the centre of each table, it would look amazing! It would also add a pop of colour to each table while still keeping it simple.    


    Candles

    Candles are a nice subtle touch and as centrepieces they look great. If you cannot find rose gold candles, why not put tea lights into jars with rose gold pattern on the outside? Or put classic white candles into rose gold candle holders.  


    Favours

    If you were thinking of giving edible favours to your guests why not give them in little rose gold boxes or bags. It will tie in with your theme perfectly and gives them something pretty to take home.  


    Lanterns

    Lanterns are so versatile, they can be hung up, placed outdoors, as part of centerpieces the options are endless! While looking gorgeous, they can light up dark corners and create a romantic candle lit atmosphere. The perfect finishing touch to your copper/metallic wedding theme!  


    Balloons

    Balloons can be such an effective piece of decor, even more effective if they match your rose-gold theme! Metallic balloons are bang on trend for 2017, imagine how glamorous your function room would look with metallic balloons on each table, in an arch or in an arrangement.

    Kate Upton & Colum O Shea

    Kate and Colum wed on March 4, 2016 at the Ardagh Church, Co. Limerick and held their reception at the Ballygarry House Hotel and Spa, Tralee, Co. Kerry.    


    We spent a lot of time thinking about the smaller details. We hired a post box on the day of the wedding and everybody thought it was a great idea. It meant that one person did not have to worry about looking after the cards throughout out the day.
     


    My favourite memory has to be the dance floor. It was never empty and everybody mixed, it was a night we will never forget.
     


    We honestly had the best time. We were so lucky to have such a great friend Kasper from Black Diamond Photography who captured the dance floor perfectly for us and everybody including us was so happy.
     


    The Details
     

    DRESS
    Finesse Bridal Wear
       

    SUITS
    Esquire Menswear
       

    CAKE
    MM Cookies
       

    INVITES
    Kelly Richardson
       

    WEDDING THEME
    Romantic

    Therese Hogan & David O Shaughnessy

    Therese Hogan married David O Shaughnessy on March 12, 2016 at St. James Church Cappagh, followed by a reception at the prestigious Fitzgerald s Woodlands House Hotel, Adare, Co. Limerick.    

    Many special touches were created by us, family and friends including the sweet cart, postbox and table favours.
       

    My favourite memory was when dad surprised us with a Pacman machine in the function room on the day, something we played a lot with when we were young, lovely memory.
       

    We involved family and friends in so many parts of the day including music, flowers,
    cake, alterations, driving the bridesmaids etc … it made our day personal and special to us.
     

    The Details  


    DRESS Virginias Bridal  

    SUITS Esquire Formal Menswear  

    HAIR & MAKE UP Catherine Hickey  

    INVITES Limelight Wedding Stationery  

    CARS Irish Diamond Limousines  

    BRIDESMAID DRESSES Kates Kloset, Askeaton

    Autumn Wedding Colour Pallettes

    This time of year is rich with colour. For an autumnal wedding there are endless pretty colour combinations; some are bright and colourful, some are dark and dramatic. Choosing the right one can be frustrating and if you want to change one or two colours in a particular palette what colour do you replace it with? What if your favourite colour does not work? What if you choose a palette but feel it is too dark? To help you avoid the stress here are a list of amazing colour combinations perfect any autumn wedding.  


    Light blue, white, grey and maroon
      You may think that light blue is more of a summer shade but that is the beauty of it; when combined with the right colours it can be suitable all year round. Grey and maroon are great contrasting colours and white works well with anything. Perhaps grey place settings on a maroon table cloth with light blue and white centrepieces. Or grey bridesmaid dresses with white or maroon accessories will look stunning.    


    Teal, maroon, lavender and amber
      If you think that these colours are not suitable to go together then you can separate them out. For example the bridesmaids could wear teal dresses and carry maroon bouquets or wear maroon accessories. Amber also compliments teal beautifully. For the centerpieces lavender and amber will work well as amber is a typical autumn colour and is brightened up by the soft lavender.    


    Black, orange, purple and emerald green
      If you are considering going for a really dramatic almost gothic vibe then this colour palette is the best choice. Black goes with pretty much any shade and orange and emerald green are gorgeous traditional autumn colours. For the pageboy and the groomsmen black suits with purple pocket squares and maybe for the bridesmaids purple dresses with black accessories.    


    Pink, cream, brown and purple
    Certainly this time of year can be chilly, dark and dreary but that does not mean your wedding has to be too! Purple is a lovely colour for any season but it is particularly popular for autumn and so is the colour brown. They can be softened up by the addition of light pink and cream. Consider a chocolate brown table cloth with cream and purple centrepieces and pink place settings and seating cards.    


    Orange, yellow and brown
      If you were considering more traditional autumnal hues you cannot go far wrong with orange and yellow. The best thing is that you can mix and match different shades of the two colours and it will look wonderful. The flowergirl would look amazing dressed in a mango coloured dress with a basket full of yellow flower petals. For the pageboy consider a dark brown suit with a dark yellow pocket square.

    An eventful surprise proposal on the Cliffs of Moher set off the perfect day for Brid & Donal

    By Michaela Keating  


    Brid Kirby from Nenagh met her beau, Donal Costello from Clareview, Limerick briefly on a night out in Galway. The pair exchanged numbers and set up a date. We met for a coffee a couple of weeks later. The coffee date lasted six hours! The pair instantly hit it off and it was not too long before Donal was planning a romantic proposal for his other half. Donal booked a weekend away but would not tell me where we were off to. It never crossed my mind that he was going to propose as he is a real romantic and a great man for planning little surprises. So it turned out we were heading to Knockranny House Hotel in Westport. On the way Donal made a detour to the Cliffs of Moher to go for a coffee for old times sake. The Cliffs of Moher is special to us, as it was the destination for one of our first romantic rendezvous and a place we have returned to many times!     So it was there, on top of O Brien s Tower that he got down on one knee! Donal proposed with a beautiful gold promise ring and with the excitement of the moment coupled with the bitterly cold and windy February morning, we managed to drop the ring and it fell under the wooden decking at the top of the tower!    


    The wonderful staff at the Cliffs came to our rescue, pulling up
    some of the floor boards and rescuing our ring. We left in mixed emotions of excitement and embarrassment!     Following the romantic and eventful proposal, it was time to secure the perfect engagement ring for the bride to be and Sharon from E-Jewels was the perfect lady for the job. We loved working with Sharon. She was fantastic, a pleasure to work with and in our opinion she is in a league of her own.    


    THE WEDDING PARTY
    Brid and Donal shared their day with some of their closest friends and family. The bride was joined by her sisters and nieces in her bridal party including; chief bridesmaid Mairead Kirby Daly, bridesmaids Deirdre Kirby and Grainne Daly and junior bridesmaids Meibh and Orna Daly. Donal s friend and brothers were by his side on the day including best man Maurice Foley, Ian Costello and Fergal Costello. The beautiful flowergirls Mairin Kirby, Sorcha Ryan, Ella and Nessa Kirby were adored by the guests along with page boys Fionn Kirby, Cian Costello, Tadhg Ryan. Conal Daly was the charming usher on the day.    


    THE WEDDING TEAM
    Sefton House Bridal in Limerick provided the bride with her stunning Benjamin Roberts wedding gown and veil. Brid s wedding look was complete with a pair of champagne heels. The bridesmaids wore fabulous dresses form Chi Chi London while the lads rocked suits from Esquire. Makeup and hair were done by Roisin Malone and Erika Salmon, Limerick. The day was spent celebrating the newly married couple on the grounds of the Connemara Coast Hotel, with Highnelly Vintage ice cream cart keeping the sweet toothed guests happy. Entertainment was also strong with music for the ceremony provided by Brid s oldest niece Meibh Daly and four of her good friends and former Bunratty Castle entertainer colleagues Sarah Ellen Murphy, Mary Kate Hanley, Sarah Keane and Ruth Lowney. One of Limerick s favourite wedding bands; Escapade ended the day on a high by keeping the dance floor full and the tunes flowing. A photo booth from Sunshine Candy Carts added to the entertainment factor, giving guests funny memories of the night to take home.  


    How was your experience working with Louise Brooks Photography?
    Our photographer was Louise Brooks, Ennis and we cannot say enough good things about her. Louise was just fantastic on the day and in the lead up to the wedding. Her attention to detail was superb and she has such a lovely way of carrying out her work. She was just amazing and a dream to work with. She captured some beautiful moments from the day and as promised, we did not even know she was there. Louise took absolutely beautiful photographs of the children with us and and our families and it was all done so quickly, calmly and effortlessly, the results are amazing and each photo looks like it took an hour to set up.    

    www.louisebrooksphotography.com
     


    Tell us about The Connemara Coast Hotel
    It is a beautiful hotel right on the coast (Galway) with magnificent grounds and stunning views. We were blessed with the only fine day of the week. Well, there was one little light shower on the day but this made for some lovely photos, when the groomsmen eventually arrived with the umbrellas. We had refreshments on the lawn after the ceremony so it was wonderful to have such a beautiful sunny day.    

    www.connemaracoasthotel.ie

    Sarah Anne McMahon & Thomas McCauley

    Sarah Anne and Thomas   

    March 18, 2016     

    St. Joseph s Church Kildimo, Limerick & Castletroy Park Hotel, Limerick          

    A special touch was having the Singing Chef during our meal courtesy of Kevin McCarthy which really got our guests going and prepared them for the dancing. We also had a caricaturist, Mark Heng, who did drawings for us after the meal. A sweet cart was provided by maid of honour Ruth Bourke and of course we made Tayto packs for everyone to take home which went down a treat.      

    My favourite memory was when Thomas surprised me during the ceremony by serenading me with Kodaline s The One which was truly amazing. I do not think there was a dry eye in the house. We had two guitars on our cake table for our guests to sign after the meal which we will keep in our home as a momentum from our big day.      

    Details
       

    DRESS A Pronovias design, Aibheil, Adare       

    PAGEBOY The couple s son Josh         

    FLOWERGIRL The couple s daughter Sarah        

    WEDDING THEME Relaxed and musical (with pretty and elegant colours)     

    This Week in Wedding News

    by Niamh Bartley

    The idea that Limerick should encourage more stag and hen nights to occur has been met with a lot of disapproval. Failte Ireland s new chair Michael Cawley has suggested that Limerick should become a hub for stag and hen parties and that this could be good for the city.  He claims that Newcastle has done really well from stag parties and that there is a lesson to be learned there. Many people, including an incensed Tony Brazil of the Shannon Conference and Sports Bureau, agree that Limerick has a bad enough reputation on its own without being compared to the likes of Newcastle. Brazil states the last thing we need is vomit on the streets. Many in opposition to Cawley s idea suggest that Failte Ireland s view of the city is poor and that they should be building on its reputation, not tearing it down further.

      
    A moment of misery turned to delight for newlyweds Joanne Nesbitt & Stephen Whelehan after their wedding rings and Joanne s engagement ring had been left in a taxi on the day of their wedding ceremony. It seemed as though they were gone forever, fortunately for them a very truthful taxi driver returned the rings to the couple as soon as he found out who the rightful owners were. He found the rings four hours after we got out of the taxi on Friday and he had been asking around. But he was on Facebook and searched online and found posts about the rings and got in touch. The bride s mother gave her daughter her own wedding ring for use during the ceremony in lieu of the intended rings, this made the ceremony even more meaningful. The happy couple were planning a second, more extravagant wedding day in Portugal so the original rings were put to use after all.

    In other news, this Wednesday September 21st married women of Ireland donned their wedding dresses to raise money for bowel cancer research. In an initiative launched by Today FM called Dare to Care, women all over Ireland wore their wedding dresses while going about their regular Wednesday routine. Some unmarried women even got involved, borrowing dresses from bridal shops for the day to show their support for the cause. The brains behind the initiative, Shauna O Reilly from the Ian Dempsey breakfast show, is blown away by the support I thought it would be brilliant to get one or two women to do it but the reaction was just massive, it has completely blown me away. Shauna s father suffers from the disease so it is extremely close to her heart and it is a cause that is definitely worth a few odd looks in the office.

    We all love a romantic gesture, but unsuspecting Orla Gallagher from Waterford was in for the surprise of her life when her boyfriend, James Barry, decided to propose. Planning for four weeks prior, James enlisted sand artist Sean Corcoran to write Orla, will you marry me? In an enormous heart on stradbally cove, co. Waterford. He also managed to get the city of Waterford Brass Band to march around the heart playing Matrimony by Gilbert O Sullivan as the question was revealed. I am still in shock, my hands are shaking, Orla told The Irish Independent. She couldn't believe what was happening, but delightedly said yes to the love of her life.

    Everybody has their own opinion when it comes to the Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt split, but most of us are still in shock that the pair have even separated. The couple, who met on the set of Mr & Mrs Smith, were together for 12 years and have 6 children. While there are many rumours going around about what irreconcilable differences entails in this case, the most prominent theory is that Brad is suffering from substance abuse issues and that Angelina wants to protect their kids. Many Celebrities have voiced their opinions, Chrissy Teigen tweeted Brad and Angelina...how am I supposed to go to work today?, while Adele dedicated her NYC concert to the pair, stating to the audience I have to address the elephant in the room...but it is the end of an era. The most upsetting celebrity reaction had to be that of the couple s close friend, George Clooney. Clooney found out the news while attending the Leaders Summit For Refugees at the United Nations. During a CNN interview, a reporter asked him his thoughts on the split, What happened? I didn't know that. I feel very sorry then. That is a sad story and unfortunate for a family. It is an unfortunate story about a family. I feel very sorry to hear that. We agree with George, shocking news.


    In other, less devastating, wedding news, TIME magazine have created a compatibility chart to figure out if your college course choice decides the type of person you will end up marrying. I for one cannot imagine myself married to a poetry student, but who knows? Try it for yourself here   
    http://time.com/4497291/college-degree-major-love-marriage/

    Tricia & Colmans perfect day in Kerry

    TRICIA BRIDGEMAN & COLMAN O FLAHERTY 


    July 1st 2016  Robertstown Church & Ballyseede Castle Hotel 


    Evelyn O'Connor Photography
     

    Tricia Bridgeman, a science teacher from Foynes was blown away when her now husband, Colman O Flaherty popped the question. Colman, a Listowel native, proposed in front of the restaurant where the pair went on their first date. The meaningful proposal was topped off with a stunning ring from Matthew Stephens, an offer Tricia could not refuse. The couple set a date for July 1, 2016 with a ceremony in Robertstown Church followed by a reception at Ballyseede Castle Hotel, Tralee.  

    THE WEDDING PARTY 
    The beautiful bride was joined on the day by her gorgeous bridesmaids; Mary Casey, Maire Dowling, Emma Counihan and Bronagh Kirk. The handsome groomsmen included Sean McAuliffe, Jimmy Moloney, Michael Murphy and Pat Barry. Cuteness overload was provided by flowergirls Hollie and Ellen Bridgeman and pageboys James and Peter Hoda.  

    THE WEDDING TEAM  
    Many elements of the day were completed by some of Limerick and Kerry s finest wedding vendors. The bridal party was beautified by the talented team at La Bella Beauty, Shanagolden with Rebecca Griffin taking care of the hair. Make up was done by Rachelle Guiry. The amazing gowns worn by the bridal party were provided by Kate s Kloset, Askeaton. The mother of the bride outfit was purchased in Sinead s Boutique, Annacotty, a popular outfit destination for the mother of the bride. Caricaturist Ralph McMahon created an amazing personalised image of the couple for their wedding invitations. All of the stunning images from Tricia and Colman s day were captured by the professional Evelyn O Connor Photography. The late night entertainment was second to none as Escapade, an award winning wedding band kept the crowd on the dance floor all night. A photo booth by Black and White Events added more fun to the reception antics. Flowers were provided by the Flower Gallery and the transport was looked after by our very own Bentley Car Hire.
     
    Randomers

    First holiday together?  
    Kusadasi 
      
    If you were to marry a celeb who would it be? 
    Channing Tatum  
     
    If your hubby was to marry a celeb who would it be?  
    Jennifer Aniston  
     
    Funniest moment during the wedding?  
    My veil taking off 50 feet into the air and my husband and photographer chasing it.  
     
    Which guests travelled the farthest?  
    Colman s cousins came from New York 
     
    HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WORKING WITH EVELYN O CONNOR PHOTOGRAPHY?  
    From the day we got engaged both Colman and I wanted Evelyn to photograph our wedding. I adore Evelyn s keen eye for detail. She knows us so well as a couple and knew exactly what we wanted on the day. We were thrilled with her work and her ability to catch the natural moments as it is these photos that brings me right back to the moment. On the day Evelyn was very professional and helped to calm our nerves too through her shining personality. Evelyn is superb. We had such fun on the day and it shows in the photos. She captured all our emotions so beautifully.

    www.evelynoconnor.ie

    A Christmas morning proposal was the perfect gift for Aideen Treacy

    Aideen Treacy & Alan Leamy

    October 4, 2014- Ennis Cathedral & The Inn at Dromoland

     
    Photos courtesy of Gary Collins Photography

    Aideen Treacy from Ennis met Alan Leamy from Newmarket on Fergus in the famous Queens Nightclub, Ennis. After an instant attraction on a night out, the pair began dating and in time, Alan decided to pop the question. Surrounded by Aideen s family in her parents home, the Montessori worker was delighted to accept his proposal. A wedding date was set for October 4, 2014 with the ceremony booked for Ennis Cathedral followed by a reception at the Inn at Dromoland. The pair shared their special day with their two boys Fionan and A.J. and 170 of their closest family and friends.  

    THE WEDDING PARTY

    The bride chose some of her closest pals to be her bridesmaids including Sarah Hanrahan, Jennette O Looney, Maura Leamy and Crea Myers. Alan s groomsmen were Barry Leamy, Jeff Mc Inerny, Pa Treacy, Ronan McCormick and Fionan Treacy. The gorgeous kiddies charmed the guests with A.J. Treacy Leamy as pageboy and Izzy Hanrahan and Hannah O Brian as flower girls.  

    THE WEDDING TEAM  
    Gary of Gary Collins photography was on hand from start to finish of the couple s big day to capture all the special moments and off guard shots of the wedding party and the day itself. A beautifully designed three tiered cake by Bakes by BOG, Ennis was put in pride of place at the reception. Aideen and her talented bridal party organised the stunning flower arrangements and decorated the church. With a touch of DIY, the bride and her mother also completed the church candles.  

    How was your experience working with Gary Collins Photography?

    Gary Collins did a fantastic job. Aideen wouldn't be the most comfortable with having her photo taken so we needed to find a photographer who wouldn't be in your face. We got Gary to do our engagement shoot and we hit it off straight away. He made us both feel very comfortable and for the most part you wouldn't even know he was there taking the pictures. From the day we booked him he couldn't do enough for us. The day of the wedding he caught every moment perfectly. We would highly recommend him to anyone tying the knot.  

     www.garycollinsphotography.com 

    The perfect wedding day for Jessica and Brian

    Jessica Sheehan and Brian O Connor

    May 20, 2016 - St. Mary s Church, Palleskenry & The Charleville Park Hotel


    Photos courtesy of Dermot Mullane Photography
     

    SOMETHING SPECIAL
    :  A special touch was having both my family and my husband s family at the top table together for the first time out of all of our family weddings.


    FAVOURITE MEMORY
    : It is pretty hard to pick a favourite memory as the whole day was just amazing but one was when I walked up the aisle with my father to meet my husband-to-be and my daughter Leah, it brought tears of happiness that I will never forget.


    HICCUP:
    The day started out just as I planned so it was time to get into the car and go to the church (the nerves were really starting to set in) and as I was on my way to the church, my father got a phone call to say the harpist/singer never turned up, I was heartbroken to know there would be no music for the church. But all I can say is my husband picked 6 great men to stand with him as they organized one of my guests Karen Keogh to sing and my brother Steven (also a groomsman) sang which is something I have always wanted him to do. It just shows when something happens like that do not ever worry because your bridal party will all pull together to make sure you have an absolutely brilliant day. It made my day even better and I am very thankful to the boys, it was a moment that I will always remember.

    Some of the wonderful suppliers that worked on Jessica and Brian s wedding included Catherine Hickey for the bride s hair and makeup, Esquire Formal Menswear kitted out the boys, the cars were supplied by Bentley Car Hire and Irish Diamond Limousine and the stunning floral arrangements and bouquets came from the wonderful Joy at Floralia Designer Florist.  

    Aislinn Connolly & Conor Fitzgerald

    Conors Lucky Bet at the Galway Races in 2003 Paid Off
    February 5, 2016-Holy Trinity Abbey & Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel & Spa, Adare
    Photos Courtesy of Gary Barett Photography

    Photos Courtesy of Gary Barrett Photography

    Aislinn Connolly, a Galway girl, first met Conor Fitzgerald , of Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel fame , at the prestigious Galway races way back in 2003. After 11 years of courting, Conor, ever the romantic, proposed to Aislinn during a trip to Dubai. Upon their return to Dublin they purchased an art deco diamond and sapphire target set ring.
      A wedding date was set for Friday February 5, 2016 at the Holy Trinity Abbey in Adare followed by a reception for 360 guests at the prestigious Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel, Adare, Co. Limerick. Conor, a director at the family run hotel, wasnt short  of help from his siblings and mother when organising their big day.   

    THE WEDDING PARTY   

    Aislinn, known as the three county Connolly because she splits her time between Dublin, Limerick and Galway, had her sister Sinead Bradbury as matron of honour, with the help of bridesmaids Moira Maher, Katharine Duane and Deirdre Burke. Conors groomsmen consisted of his two brothers and two friends, David and Richard Fitzgerald, Aidan O Rahilly and Michael Toomey. Our three god children were our page boys, Fionn Connolly, Milo Kane and Michael Bradbury.

    THE WEDDING TEAM   

    Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel has an in house flower arranging service for ceremonies and wedding receptions. Aislinn and Conors wedding flowers were supplied by Geraldine Foley. Aislinns wedding dress was a Johanna Johnson design from Knightsbridge Boutique, Powerscourt in Dublin. 'I tried on 30 odd dresses, from eight shops, four fabulous days out'. Aislinn had a vintage gold veil from Knightsbridge Boutique in Powerscourt to match. Her shoes were bought online from Freya Rose, a plain and simple peep toe designed by Style Arura. The bridesmaids were Alfred Sung dresses in a cloudy blue colour.   

    The bridal partys hair was done by Sinead Lee from Renaissance in Galway and Nicole O Gorman from Revas Spa, Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel. We had ten hairstyles to do so it was all hands on deck! Annette Smyth did Aislinns make-up and Aislinns tan was DIY. I did my fake tan myself, Lancome leg gel all over! The wedding invitations were provided by the brilliant Orla Gilbourne of Limelight Design. Diarmuid Leonard of Photobooth 365 provided some entertainment for the guests with one of his photobooths for hire. Guests loved it, it was great fun!' added Aislinn. The church music was performed by Limerick Gospel Choir, who created a bright cheerful atmosphere. Conors wedding ring is a gold 1950s thick band that originally was his fathers, Dick, who passed away in September 2014 so its really special that he is able to wear his dads. Mine is a custom made platinum diamond band shared Aislinn.   

    CHERISHED MOMENTS  

    So many to choose from! The morning of the wedding with all my family and bridal party at the Mustard Seed, Limerick. Meeting Conor at the top of the aisle. The arrival reception where my mother and mother in law kicked of the celebrations by gathering a big crowd around themselves as they danced to the music at five pm! Walking into the function room to a rapturous crowd. My dads speech. Dancing the night away with Conor and all our loved ones on the dance floor until late.   

    Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel kept the wedding party going on the following day. 200 of our family and friends stayed around to keep the celebrations going, we had a big party in the hotel, consisting of buffet style grub, Irish seanos dancers and music. Following the wonderful celebrations, the couple headed away on the honeymoon of a lifetime to Australia, New Zealand and Bali for five and a half weeks. We had a ball!


    SPECIAL TOUCHES   

    Our friends organized a video link interview with Micheal O Muircheartaigh amongst others sporting heroes which was played on big screens in the function room before the meal. It was really special and an amazing surprise. You could have heard a pin drop when Micheal was speaking. 
    Aislinns advice to other brides and grooms is to remember that you will only do it once (hopefully!) so embrace every day in the lead up to the wedding. Cherish the days out and the moments. Dont sweat the small things. People are so good natured and generous in the lead up to your day so lap it all up. Its sooo cliché but when people say it was the best day of our lives, we totally get it! It was ours! Celebrating their marriage in the family run business was deeply sentimental for the couple. We were so proud to have our wedding at home. It was a dream come true after growing up in the business and seeing it develop from a 4 bedroom bungalow to the 93 bedroom four star hotel it is today! It was an amazing weekend from start to finish. We can't thank our team enough for looking after our guests so well over the weekend.

    WHAT WAS IT LIKE WORKING WITH GARY BARRETT PHOTOGRAPHY? 

    Gary was great. You didn't even notice him taking snaps. Very discreet. It was really important to Conor and I to make as much of our arrival reception as possible. After the ceremony, Gary didn't delay and captured all the snaps in approx. 40 mins. We were back in the hotel for 4.20pm to absorb the atmosphere with our guests.   
    www.garybarrettphoto.com

    Cleo Hassett & John Normoyle

    An Unforgettable Christmas Gift For Cleo Hassett
    March 12, 2016 St Michaels Church, Kilmihil, Co. Clare & The Armada Hotel, Spanish Point

    Photos Courtesy of Louise Brooks Photography

    Cleo Hassett, a 27 year old senior direct distributor from Kilmihil, Co. Clare first met John Normoyle, 36, a plasterer also from Kilmihil, Co.Clare in their local pub The Fiddle Head over seven and a half years ago. Sparks were flying on that faithful night and the rest as they say, is history. The pair now live together with their two children, Oisín and Fía.
     
    After many years and two beautiful children together, John decided to propose to the woman of his dreams on Christmas morning. Cleo was busy preparing and cooking when she turned around and to her surprise, her son Oisín was holding an etch a sketch which read mammy will you marry daddy.
    John was on one knee behind him, holding the ring.  

    The wedding date was set for March 12, 2016 with the ceremony taking place in St. Michaels Church, Kilmihil, Co. Clare, followed by a reception in The Armada Hotel in Spanish Point. Wedding preparations were swiftly underway as Cleo took a trip to Milltown Malbay and found the dress of her dreams in The Bridal Emporium, after trying on way too many. This is also where she bought her veil. After sending out invitations, printed by McNamaras Printers, Shannon, to two hundred and ten of their friends and family, all that was left for the couple to do was to say, I do!

    The couples two children were involved in their special day. Their daughter, Fía was one of the flower girls and their son, Oísin was the pageboy. Both children walked down the aisle with personalised signs that were made by The Little Post Box.   Not only did Johns brother, Barry, travel all the way from Perth in Australia to join the couple on their big day, he also gave a great speech. The couple are heading to Australia themselves on their honeymoon in November. The day after the wedding John and Cleo relaxed with their children and had a big shin dig in their local bar later that night. Cleo said if she were to give any advice for brides planning a wedding it would be, Dont stress out everything really does fall into place in the end and take in the whole day because its over in a flash.  

    TELL US ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH LOUISE BROOKS PHOTGRAPHY?
    Our photographer Louise Brooks was such a pleasure to work with, her experience and expertise shone through on our special day and in the final product. She is a wonderful person and a model professional. She allowed the day to flow freely by staying in the background, but still captured all of the special moments. www.louisebrooksphotography.com

    Elaine Holmes & Aidan Fitzgerald

    An Office Romance Leads to a Romantic Proposal Down Under
    March 18, 2016, St Michaels Church, Cappamore and The Abbey Court Hotel in Nenagh

    Photos Courtesy of Baker Photography

    It was an office romance that changed the lives of Elaine Holmes and Aidan Fitzgerald nine years ago. Elaine originally from Cappamore, works in HR at the AIB in Ballsbridge, Dublin. Aidan, originally from Castlejordan, Co. Offaly works in finance for Ryanair in Swords, Dublin. They are living happily together in Clontarf. The couple spent some time living in Melbourne, Australia where Aidan proposed a week before they returned home to Ireland.

    Aidan had booked into the Crown Hotel in Melbourne as part of my 30th birthday present, we were living in Melbourne at the time and it was our last week there before moving home. He proposed in the hotel room wearing a bathrobe while we were getting ready to head out for dinner, so he caught me completely off guard! Elaine told her sister Mary first as she was still in work near the hotel in Melbourne. It was lovely to be able to celebrate with family first even when we were on the other side of the world. Very soon a date was set for March 18, 2016 at Cappamore Church followed by a reception at the Abbey Court Hotel in Nenagh, Co. Tipperary.  

    THE WEDDING PARTY
    Elaines sisters Mary, Aisling and Sinead Holmes were bridesmaids. Aidans brother, James Fitzgerald , and his two friends, Shane Rushe and Keith Walsh were groomsmen. Aidans nephew, Cian Cusack, was page boy and the honorary flowergirl was Elaines four month old niece Aoife Ryan.

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    Elaines fabulous wedding flowers were supplied by Patricia Irwin of Ring O Roses. Instead of a traditional wedding cake, the couple went for a unique cake of cheese wheels and it was finished off with personalised Lego figurines as cake toppers which were an engagement gift from Aidans sister Orla. We also had a candy cart in the reception area and a photo frame with props to bring out peoples silly side! The invitations were supplied by Splash Graphics, Kevin Daly was the videographer and Baker Photography looked after the couples photographs. Having tried on close to twenty dresses, Elaine chose a Fara Sposa design from Kathy De Stafford in Nenagh. She chose a single layer full length veil and diamante and pearl headpiece from the same store. Kerry Jane Hurley and Paul Quinn set the scene in Cappamore church with their musical talent. Their song choice for the first dance was Walk The Moons Shut up and Dance as they wanted something fun and modern with lovely lyrics to get the party started!

    CHERISHED MOMENTS
    My favourite memory was walking up the aisle with my father, its one of those special moments I will always cherish. Also just having everyone who means so much to Aidan and me in one place dancing the night away, shares Elaine. The funniest moment during the wedding was when the priest introduced us as Mr. and Mrs. McCarthy after marrying us instead of Mr. and Mrs. Fitzgerald! Both families stayed for a second night at the hotel. We had booked a meal in the Abbey Court, there was about 30 of us and we had a lovely room to ourselves for the meal, it was lovely to have everyone around for a second day together before everyone went their separate ways. Aidan had the most input in choosing the suits, speeches and most importantly planning a wedding wine trip to France! The newlyweds visited Barcelona for a few days after the wedding and are looking into a bigger holiday later in the year, we wanted a trip to plan and look forward to after the wedding said Elaine.

    How was your experience working with Baker Photography?
     
    The minute we met Rose Petal and Kenneth we knew we wanted them to capture our special day. Rose Petal was amazing to work with, she put everyone at ease and created a really relaxed environment on the day. She was such a professional and got the shots she wanted quickly and it really all felt so easy. Also it was Kenneth who suggested going to Dromineer for photos in our first meeting and it was just so perfect on the day!
    www.bakerphotography.ie

    Catriona Shelton & Nigel O'Keeffe

    Wedding Stylist Extraordinaire Executes the Perfect Wedding 
    New Years Eve 2015, Church of the Immaculate Conception, Ballingarry and Anna Carriga Estate, Killaloe

    Photos courtesy of Photography by Saulius 

    Wedding stylist Catriona Shelton envisioned a winter wedding day that combined sophistication, elegance and glamour. Her classic theme was black and ivory pearl glam and she blew her guests away with her amazing eye for detail. It was 14 years ago when Catriona and Nigel O Keeffe first met through friends. Catriona got a surprise Facebook message from Nigel. We exchanged a few messages, he made me laugh and the rest is history as they say! Nigel planned a romantic proposal on Christmas Eve 2014, a night the couple traditionally spent together. It was Christmas Eve and I had no clue! My dad (knowing what was going to happen) was at me all evening asking if I would go for a drink later, I said no as Nigel and I have a tradition where we exchange presents and spend the evening together as we go to our separate homes for Christmas dinner. Nigel lit the fire, put Christmas songs on the telly and gave me his first present which was a beautiful dress I had spotted on a window, next was a clutch to match and he then handed me the last one which was a shoe box... I presumed it was shoes to match so I nearly died when I opened the box to see a ring box taped to the bottom. The family were on standby waiting and a little while later we were all at the local celebrating!  

    The couple chose to have a New Years Eve celebration and set the date for December 31, 2015 at the Church of the Immaculate Conception Ballingarry followed by reception in the prestigious AnnaCarriga Estate, Killaloe.

    A STYLISH AFFAIR
    The overall theme was reflected with intricate detailing from the ceremony to the reception, including the bridal party. The brides dress was a Badgley Mischka design and she had a Badgley Mischka shoes to match. Catrionas bouquet was a unique, bejeweled creation made by her father. The bridesmaids wore black gowns with ivory fur wraps, and ivory rose bouquets to match. The groomsmen and the fathers of the bride and groom wore black and white striped ties and the groom wore a solid black tie. Church decoration was complete with beautiful ivory roses and two ivory rose trees which would be seen to feature throughout the day.

    The plush reception decor featured black table runners and chair covers, which were complimented with ivory napkins, tableware and bows on the back of the chairs. A variety of table arrangements featured the same ivory roses (matching the bridesmaids bouquets), some of which had pearls or black candlesticks adorning the tables, all DIY by Catriona and her extended family.  The brides mother made a fabulous five tiered wedding cake which was decorated with ivory and black icing by MK Cakes. As the wedding was held on a chilly New Years Eve, the couple decided to serve the soup at the drinks reception to warm their guests up, and provided blankets for outside if people wanted to go for a stroll by the lake which went down a treat.

    CHERISHED MOMENTS
    Catriona also had a special treat instore for her new husband after dinner, I had a surprise video for Nigel from none other than musician Finbar Furey wishing us luck on our day.’ Remarkably, most of the decor and hard work was carried out by Catriona and family members from both Catriona and Nigels family. Catriona and Nigel made the invitations, something that the bride says he wont forget in a hurry! My dad made my bouquet, both families decorated the venue in the days leading up to the wedding, my brothers did the lighting for me, and my father in law made the LOVE sign for outside so it was a real family effort making this day possible. The two mothers were hugely involved too helping with the flowers, flower girl dress, name cards, cake, just to mention a few things! In terms of entertainment, Photobooth 365 supplied a photobooth, and the singing chef John Frawley made a grand appearance. John Frawley the singing chef really broke the ice for people before the meal.

    Tell us about your wedding at the AnnaCarriga Estate?  
    One day three years ago myself and Nigel were out driving and decided to hire out a boat from AnnaCarriga Estate. I had never been there but the minute we turned the corner and I saw the pavilion I blurted out My god, I’m going to get married here. Thankfully he didnt run and three years on we did it! After meeting Jana she was amazing from start to finish and nothing phased  her. Her team were amazing on the night, the food was second to none and the help she provided in the days leading up to the wedding was brilliant! Even her dad and husband pitched in and they provided some great banter for the few days. With it being the wettest winter in years, having a reception by the lake may have seemed mad but it was the most perfect day in the most perfect setting!  www.annacarriga.com

    Visit Kittureweddings.ie and check out Catrionas Wedding and Event Styling.

    Ciara Neill & Jack Cowhey

    An Intimate Proposal At Home 
    September 4th 2015, St. Munchin’s Church followed by The Strand Hotel, Limerick

    Photos courtesy of Eoghan Lyons Photography

    Ciara Neill and Jack Cowhey crossed paths at work one day and the pair havent looked back since. Once Jack knew that Ciara was the one, he picked out a stunning ring from Portobello Antiques in Ellen St. Limerick. Then, one day while Ciara was out visiting her grandparents, she came home to a beautiful setting with Jack ready and waiting to pop the question, and of course, she said yes! The date was soon set for the September 4, 2015 and once Ciara designed the invites and got them printed, they were sent out to 180 of their family and friends. Their ceremony was held in St. Munchins church followed by a reception in the Strand Hotel, Limerick.

    The morning of the wedding, Ciaras hair and make-up was done by Catherine Hickeys team of professionals. Once she was ready to go, Jacks uncle picked her up in his vintage Mercedes and brought her to the church. Her bridesmaids followed closely behind her courtesy of Irish Diamond Limousines. Ciara had Sarah, Stacey & Nikita as her bridesmaids and Jack chose Mark, Keith and Stuart as his groomsmen. Their daughter Chloe was flower girl along with Ciaras god-daughter Emma. Despite a mix up with one of the groomsmens waistcoats on the way to the wedding, the day went smoothly and both Jack and Ciara loved every bit of it.

     Jack didnt let all the work up to Ciara either. He organized a cigar bar for the reception which went down a treat and Ciara sugared up their guests with a sweet cart. The following day they organized food music and a bouncy castle in the Limerick Lawn for family and friends. The couple, whose very first holiday together was to the romantic city of Barcelona, are jetting off to the Maldives and Dubai on their honeymoon shortly. Ciaras one piece of advice is: Dont stress the little things. Everything always comes together in the end. Also if your dress is a button up, start getting into it a little earlier than you had planned. It definitely took longer than I had imagined. Ciaras beautiful dress was a Pronovias Gown purchased in De Stafford Bridal, Nenagh and she walked up the aisle in a nude pair of Kurt Geiger Stilettos. Her something borrowed was her headpiece, borrowed from a friend, and she also wore a stunning veil by Linzi Jay. The couple shared their first dance to Kodalines, The One and they trusted Eoghan Lyons as their photographer to capture all of the special moments throughout the day. Their stunning floral arrangements were created with love by Martine of Blossoms Flowers.

    What was it like working with Eoghan Lyons as your photographer? 
    Eoghan Lyons was a pleasure to deal with. He made himself invisible but yet captured every brilliant moment. We were absolutely delighted we chose him to be our wedding photographer and would not hesitate in booking him for future events.
    www.eoghanlyons.com

    Awkward Wedding Situations

    By Kelly Hynes 

    So, your aunt announces that she thinks your dress is tacky! While your charming cousin wants to bring his newest girlfriend along to the wedding (this is his third girlfriend this week). No wedding would be complete without some socially awkward situations to spice it up. But it demands the question, how do you put a stop to their antics without sounding like a bridezilla? 

    Telling your friends/family they are not in the wedding party
     
    This can cause hurt and resentment, as people often love weddings and therefore feel they can be the most helpful and reliable person to have by your side. Deliver the news in a sensitive and fair way. Tell him/her that you really value their friendship but you couldnt possibly have everyone in your bridal party. You can give them a role in the ceremony or let them organise an aspect of the wedding that will give them recognition. No matter how rejected they feel, it is your decision and it should not have to be compromised. 

    Saying no to extra guests
     
    Probably the most common awkward situation but also the easiest to resolve! The magic word here is budget constraints, who can argue with that? It is the true reason in 90% of these cases, as most couples would love to have the financial means to invite everyone but unfortunately they dont. If you were aiming for a small wedding, tell them that you want a small intimate ceremony with family and close friends. 

    Not wanting kids at your wedding 
    Everyone is different, some people find children adorable and others find them unbearable. If you want your wedding child-free that is absolutely within your rights. You will find that some guests within the parent category will be delighted to drop the kids off at the grandparents for the weekend and let their hair down. On the other hand, you may get some less than impressed parents who cannot attend the wedding if they are stuck for childcare options. Dont be blunt and write things like 'adult-only' on your invitations or you will be asking for trouble! Address it to John & Mary Smith instead of the Smith family and use word of mouth to spread your no child policy. 

    Someone has too much to drink at the reception
     
    There is always one at every wedding. If your guest(s) is getting too rowdy, stay calm! You can discuss this issue with your venue staff, they are more than likely well used to dealing with this situation discreetly. Let the staff know that they can stop serving someone or offer water if they think they have had too many. Leave it up to the persons friends or partner to look after them on your day.  

    Our Summer Issue is Here!

    Calling all brides! Our summer issue is jam-packed full of sizzling ideas for your summer wedding. From beautiful real weddings to fun ideas, you will be spoiled for choice.

    Read all about our amazing couples that recently tied the knot, including our front cover couple, Aislinn and Conor Fitzgerald of Fitzgeralds Woodlands House Hotel fame. We have featured weddings of all shapes and sizes in this issue, so we can guarantee plenty of inspiration to help you plan your fairytale day! This issue of Brides of Limerick is a bible for any bride to be, so head to your local Limerick shop on the 27th of May and pick up a copy!

    Sold in shops all over Limerick for 3.95

    The First Dance

    Its the most important song of the evening, the First Dance. There is so much thought and emotion put into choosing it. Limerick brides have shared with us some of their first dances. Lets see if any of them strike a cord with you.  

    I Swear by All for One.  

    You ll Never Walk Alone by Rodgers and Hammerstein  

    Days of our Lives by Queen  

    Shut up and dance with me by Walk the Moon

    Forever and Ever, Amen by Randy Travis  

    The First, the Last, My Everything by  Barry White  

    Stand by Me by Ben E King  

    Heart of Gold by Neil Young  

    At Last by  Etta James  

    Lucky in Love by Jason Mraz

    Calico Skies by Paul McCartney  

    Dance with me Tonight by Olly Murs  

    Rule the World by Take That  

    Your Song by Elton John  

    Hold On by Michael Buble  

    When I Fall in Love by Nat King Cole  

    Shes Every Woman by Gareth Brooks

    Songbird by Eva Cassidy    

    How to survive your wedding day in high heels

    Your wedding day will be a long day, with lots of walking and standing straight involved. You dont want to let the best day of your life be ruined by excruciating pain from your fabulous but deadly 6-inch Louboutins. 
    We have all seen those brides choosing style over comfort and are barefoot before the first dance. On the other hand, high heels are a girls best friend. They make our legs more elongated, do wonders for our calves and make us look taller. Hence why the pain seems worth it, so read on and see how you can reduce the pain and dance all night!   

    Purchasing
             
    Thick, chunky heels are more stable and supportive for your feet than thin stiletto heels
             
    Thin soled shoes usually give pain on the bottom of your foot
    Thicker platform type shoes remove some of the pressure when you are walking
           
    Open toe shoes take some pressure off corns and calluses
            
    Many brides are wisely purchasing two pairs of shoes: their heels and a pair of flat sandals or pumps for the reception
    Dont forget to break in your flats too, they can cause just as many blisters and cuts as high heels!
     
    Make sure the shoes you choose fit properly and that theres room to wiggle your toes around.
                

    Wearing
     
    Once you purchase your shoes, break them in! Wear them around the house and get used to them. This will soften the shoe material and should reduce the chances of the shoe cutting into your foot.          
    Take your high heels off whenever you get the chance, (in the car on the way to the reception, during the meal etc.) and stretch out your feet.
          
    Bring blister plasters in your bag, they can provide phenomenal relief to raw blisters. I cannot stress enough how much of a saviour blister plasters are for your toes and heels!
            
    You can buy gel insoles for your high heels over the counter in most shoe shops or pharmacies. They are inserted into the shoe under the ball of your foot to prevent pain. Wearing high heels puts all your weight onto the ball of your foot, so thats where you usually feel pain first. They also hold your foot in the same place and stop it sliding in the shoe, preventing friction and blisters.
             
    Dont forget to bring your chosen shoes to your dress fittings so that the length of the dress corresponds with the height of your shoes.
           

    Recovering
            
    If your feet are killing you the day after the wedding, the best thing to do is go barefoot as much as possible.
          Soak your feet in hot water, it will probably sting at first but heat soothes your muscles.       
    If you have blisters, dont pop them! If it is an open blister, disinfect and cover with a band aid.

    Keeping Your Engagement Ring Safe

    By Rachel Kealy

    So you have popped the champagne, celebrated with family and friends and one or both of you cant stop staring at your left hand. You re engaged! The next step-before you do so much as to try to set a date is to make sure you ve got that ring fully insured and safeguarded. We ve all seen the recent social media posts about lost rings, and our hearts go out to those poor couples. Below we ve outlined the best ways you can make sure that your ring is protected. 

    Insurance Policies
     
    Most couples insure their engagement ring under household insurance policies. Depending on the value of the ring, it may incur an increase in your policy. Depending on the value of the ring, it may incur an increase your policy, but you can shop around to get the best deal. There are also specialist insurance companies catering exclusively for high value jewellery. Make sure you are covered overseas as well, as rings can sometimes go missing on holidays. 

    Valuation
     
    Insurance companies will usually require an original valuation or receipt. The jeweller you or your beloved purchased the ring from will often provide this without charge. If not, the price depends on the value of your ring, which can make an excess of 100 euro. You will therefore wish to keep the original document safe, sending it to the insurance company by registered post and asking for it to be returned when they re finished their inspection. Some insurers recommend getting your ring valued every couple of years, as the value of jewellery, especially diamonds, can fluctuate. You don t want to be under or over insured. 

    Read the Fine Print  
    When it comes to special value items such as engagement/wedding rings, many insurance policies have very detailed requirements regarding valuation, maintenance and storage. Always read the fine print and ensure you re covered for all eventualities including loss, destruction or theft. For example, some insurance companies demand that settings are checked by a professional jeweller every two years to ensure they are still keeping the diamond secure. Also, depending on the value of your ring, you may be required to keep it in a locked safe when not wearing it. Be careful to take note of these little details so that you are fully covered should the worst happen.
      
    Keeping it Safe 
    Now that you re wearing a high-value item every day, you might need to re evaluate a few of your lifestyle habits. You will have to use hotel safes while on holidays, and secure lockers in the gym. Taking off your ring to wash your hands or go for a quick swim isnt a good idea, as its very easy to leave it behind you or even lose it down a sink. Ensure it fits properly and if necessary, have it resized or a ring-guard fitted. 

    Maintenance
     
    We have all heard the horror stories about diamonds being changed when rings are being cleaned professionally. I am not sure how prevalent this issue really is, but it cant do any harm to ensure you are bringing your ring to a professional, well recognised and fully insured jewellers to be cleaned or checked.  

    Making Shapes! How to choose the right dress for your bridesmaids

    By Michaela Keating 

    Choosing your bridesmaids dresses can be just as exciting as choosing your bridesmaids. As all women come in a variety of shapes and sizes, making sure your gal pals are comfortable on your wedding day is a must. We have put together some guidelines based on dressing for all different body shapes to help you choose wisely for your bridal party.

    1. Apple
    Apple shaped ladies carry their weight above the hips and broaden around the shoulders. Choosing dresses with an empire waistline will be super flattering for apple shapes and will give the illusion of a smaller waist. Choosing good support in the bust area is essential for comfort too. Make like Drew Barrymore or Jessica Simpson and elongate the torso with V necklines and or dare to show a bit more skin with a slit up the leg. 

    2. Hourglass
    Always the desired shape, the lucky hourglass ladies have the curves for fitted dresses and belts to accentuate that small waist. Good support in the bust area is necessary and try to avoid anything floaty or baggy as it will give the illusion of weight that is not there. Make use of those curves tastefully like Beyonce by wearing a figure hugging dress without going over board.

    3. Pear
    Pear shapes have hips wider than their shoulders with a small waist and a well rounded bum. Creating an illusion of balance in the body and owning your curves is essential for the pears by wearing strapless dresses to show off the arms and even out proportions. Go for pointed toe shoes to elongate the leg like the queen of the booty, J Lo!

    4. Rectangle
    This shape is typically athletic with the shoulders, waist and hips being the same width. Your best assets are your arms and legs so make the most of them with strapless dresses or short dresses to show off those amazing pins. Avoid overwhelming styles that will suffocate your shape and make use of waist enhancing styles to accentuate the slender figure like the fabulous Natalie Portman. 

    Whether you are having a large bridal party or one main lady by your side on your big day, sit down with them beforehand and get an idea of what they like and what they are aware will or will not suit their body shape. Many bridal party suppliers provide bridesmaid dresses in one colour in different shapes or styles, which will make matching the dress to the body shape that little bit easier. It is your big day, so what more could you ask for than being comfortable and looking fabulous with your besties? (Aside from that new hubby of course!)

    Ten Minutes with Kaspars from Black Diamond Photography

    Would you consider your style to be a unique style of photography? And if so why?     
    I would describe my style as a storyteller. I always try to capture as much detail as I can and adding a vintage feel to my photographs. When it comes to photography no job is too big or too small and its always UNIQUE!   

    How important is capturing the bride and grooms special moments to you?
       
    What I love about wedding photography is that I can capture a moment thats gone forever, impossible to reproduce. I always have my eyes on the bride & groom and finger on the clicker waiting for that perfect moment to happen.   

    How long do couples usually wait between the wedding day and receiving the album?
       
    It takes few days to see your first previews. Then 2-4 weeks to see your full DVD album. And it takes another 2 weeks for the album to arrive.   

    Do you do trash the dress photography sessions with couples after the wedding day?
       
    As part of my package I offer FREE after wedding shoot to all my full day packages. What I have found is that couples are more relaxed few days after the wedding and they dont have to spend time away from their guests on the wedding day. Yes I do trash the dress shoots. They are very enjoyable shoots. The options are endless with a trash the dress shoot, the sky is the limit. I aim for the couple to just have a really fun day and to do a shoot that fits their personalities. However, if the bride does not want to trash the dress the option to do a shoot after the wedding day is still available. I encourage it, as it will be much more laid back shoot. We would be under no time limits and the couple may pick any location at all that they would like to do their shoot. I think these shoots are growing in popularity for great reasons but the decision is totally up to the couple.     

    Black Diamond Photography 
     
    For bookings contact: 085-2844130   
    Facebook   https://www.facebook.com/BlackDiamondPhotographyNCW/   
    Instagram   https://www.instagram.com/black_diamond_photography/   
    Vimeo   https://vimeo.com/blackdiamondphotography
     

    Aine McCoy & Raymond Walsh

                                 "A New Year's Day Wedding for childhood sweethearts"
                                                      Aine McCoy & Raymond Walsh
                                         January 1, 2016, Ballyseede Castle, Tralee, Co.Kerry

    An intimate affair with a touch of vintage class was the vision Aine McCoy and Raymond Walsh had for their winter wedding. Their romantic story begins in Newcastle West, where they grew up and later became childhood sweethearts. Aine and Raymond moved to Canada together and have been living and working in Saskatoon for two years. On a visit home together in 2014, Raymond gave Aine the gift of a lifetime by asking her to marry him on Christmas Eve. Aine said yes and the proposal began a journey of planning that would see the couple come home to county Limerick to tie the knot. The wedding date was set for New Years Day, 2016, in Carrigkerry Church Co. Limerick followed by the reception in Ballyseede Castle Tralee, Co. Kerry.

    THE BRIDAL PARTY
    BRIDESMAIDS
     Michelle Kennedy and Katrina O Connor 
    GROOMSMEN Edward Walsh and Michael Walsh 
    FLOWER GIRLS Lauren Walsh, Lavenya Short, Isabelle Walsh, Elle-Mai Short, Bethann Walsh, Freya Smith and Esther-Mai O Connor 
    PAGE BOYS Charlie Kennedy and James McCoy

    THE WEDDING DETAILS
     
    TRANSPORT Irish Diamond Limousines  
    PHOTOGRAPHER Black Diamond Photography 
    FIRST DANCE Loving You, by Paulo Nutini 
    WEDDING THEME Vintage Style 
    THE HONEYMOON Mexico 
    SHOES Kurt Geiger 
    MOTHER OF THE BRIDE Paule Ka dress with a Max Mara coat 
    HOW MANY GUESTS? 158 
    FAVOURITE MEMORY Being in the church surrounded by all our friends and family 
    WHAT DID YOUR HUBBY HAVE THE MOST INPUT IN Music 
    ADVICE FOR BRIDES Try not to stress too much but easier said than done
     

    RANDOMERS

    FIRST HOLIDAY TOGETHER Lanzarote 
    FUNNIEST MOMENT DURING THE WEDDING? I loved all the dancing the night of the wedding 
    WHICH GUEST LOOKED AMAZEBALLS All guests were looking amazing there was some really great style! 
    WHOM DID YOU TELL YOU WERE ENGAGED FIRST? Our families 
    ONE THING YOU WOULD CHANGE ABOUT YOUR DAY Not one thing, I loved every second of it 
    SONG YOU WALKED UP THE AISLE TO Canon in D 
    WHICH COUPLE FROM YOUR WEDDING DO YOU THINK WILL GET ENGAGED NEXT? Hopefully be my brother as I love family weddings: Aine
     

    How was your experience working with Black Diamond Photography?

    With a professional wedding photographer you put your trust in them to capture the most important day of your life, Black diamond Photography exceeded all our expectations. Not only did he capture the big moments but he also captured the small moments and all those moments in between. He created beautiful images for us that we will have to share for the rest of our lives. He was very easy to work with and did not keep us away from our guests for too long which we had wanted. www.blackdiamondphotography.ie 
       

     

    Ten minutes with Jennifer & Kevin from Sunshine Candy Carts


    What does a candy cart add to a wedding?
    Our 2 handmade vintage style candy carts provide our couples with the perfect way to treat their guests - young and old, who doesn't love a sweet treat!  Complete with handmade colourful cloth canopies both carts come with bags, scoops/tongs and romantic accessories.  

     Can I choose what sweets to put in?
    Of course!  We provide you with a long list of sweets to choose from.  Not to worry, if your favourites aren't on the list we do our very best to source them, often bringing in Old School favourites from the U.S.!  

    At what point in the wedding would people use the cart?

    Its your choice!  Some couples prefer to treat their guests during the drinks reception, some prefer to save it for after the meal. We setup our carts early on the morning of our couples big day & collect the following morning. We provide a handmade colourful cover for our jars of sweets so we give our couples the choice of what time they wish to open the cart for their guests.We wouldnt like everyone to spoil their dinner! 

    Can I hire you for the day after too?

    Of course, we cater for every size party & for any occasion!  

    How do you charge? Per hour or per cart?
    Our packages are per cart & include overnight rental.  We created our packages to cater for the most popular guest numbers.  We work with our couples to create the best package to suit them.

    Sunshine Candy Carts
    Jennifer & Kevin
    Ballysimon, Limerick

    BRIDES OF LIMERICK BEST PHOTO BOOTH WINNER 2015

    Web: www.sunshinecandycarts.ie
    Email: hello@sunshinecandycarts.ie

    Facebook: www.facebook.com/sunshinecandycarts.ie
    Twitter: @sunshinecarts

    Ten Minutes with Martina Breen from Coffee Aroma

    Tell us about your business? 

    Coffee Aroma is a purpose-built mobile cafe, from which we serve speciality coffee (americano, cappuccino, latte, mocha), hot chocolate, tea, herbal tea and a range of snacks (cookies/biscuits/muffins etc.) We provide a professional service for all special events (public/private), weddings, charity events, sporting events, conferences, festivals and shows.

    How do Coffee Aroma provide a service to the bride and groom?   


    Coffee Aroma provides an ideal service for the wedding couple. The wedding day can be a very long day and with some guests travelling long distances to the church/wedding venue, theres no greater welcome than a great cup of coffee/tea and some nibbles! The bride and groom can relax knowing their guests are professionally greeted and catered for when they arrive and after the ceremony.

    What will the average cost be to hire Coffee Aroma? 


    In the Limerick area, the average cost for hire of service is 600 euro (this is subject to distance travelled to wedding venue and time of service).

    Whats your ideal setting for the Coffee Aroma van? (Outside a church, hotel? What do you suggest?)                                                                                     
     

    Outside a church is a fabulous setting for the Coffee Aroma mobile cafe.  However, with the increasing number of civil ceremonies, we can serve at any venue of your choice, we are a mobile after all!

    Do you provide everything? (Cups, etc.)   
     

    We provide EVERYTHING and each and every guest is served professionally by ourselves, Martina and Pat, with a smile, every time!

    Can I hire you for the following day? Do you offer packages for weekend weddings?   
     

    Yes we offer weekend packages for the after party! Prices will be determined based on time of service and requirements.

    For bookings or queries you can contact Martina Breen on 087 681 7768
    Facebook:
     https://www.facebook.com/CoffeeAromaMobileCafe/?fref=ts
    Twitter: @thecoffeebreen
      

    Enjoy Your Wedding Day

    With all the stress and planning, some brides and even grooms can be too busy to actually enjoy what they have put so much work into. Here are some tips to help you relax and enjoy your day!

    Eat a good breakfast
    It'll be a long day so you'll want to keep yourself energized for all of it.

    Make sure to break in your shoes
    Some time before the wedding, wear your wedding shoes around the house and break them in. You don't want to be limping around all day in shoes that are killing your feet. 

    Get your bridesmaids to do as much as they can
    They're your best friends, so you can trust them to do anything you need them to.

    Make sure you have plenty of time to get ready
    You don't want to be in a panicked rush on one of the most memorable days of your life,you don't want to make it any more stressful for yourself by having to rush around because you haven't given yourself enough time for everything. Make sure you write out a plan so you know exactly what time you're doing everything that morning.

    Pack flats
    When it's the middle of the night and you're out on the dance floor with your friends the last thing you want is to have to hobble off half way through your favourite song because you can't stand in your shoes anymore. Make sure you have a pair of gorgeous flats on hand that you can quickly change into if needs be. Put your most trusted bridesmaid in charge of them actually being around.

    Give the DJ or band a couple of songs that you LOVE
    No matter who you hire, you're going to want to make sure they actually play good music that people will want to get up and dance to. And especially music that people will definitely know. Give your chosen entertainer a list of all songs you definitely want played, but also give them some room to pick their own choices. At the end of the day they will have tons of experience in choosing songs that keep the floor full.

    Dance
    This is your day, don't forget to have fun. You don't want to see all of your friends having a great time out on the dancefloor while you're running about fussing over every little detail. Relax, have some fun. 

    Don't forget about your partner
    During the after part it could be easy to forget your partner and just spend the night dancing with your bridesmaids. Make sure you go to them at some point but spend a lot of your time with your partner, it's their day too and you wouldn't be having the day at all if it wasn't for them!

    Ten Minutes with Jonathan from Ireland's Party DJs

    What makes you different to other DJs? 
    Well I suppose what makes me different from other DJs is the personal touches I like to add to any occasion. I like to meet up with the couple before the big day to try get to know them and their personality and vice versa, I find it helps the couple relax and makes the day go a lot smoother especially when they couple know they are in good hands for the night. 
    Every wedding is unique, so are every couple. I like to arrive early for every occasion and I always dress professionally, so whether its a tuxedo or a chicken suit, thats not a problem, I aim to please (haha).

    Whats your favourite part of your job?
     
    I guess my favourite part of the job is seeing the dancefloor full for the night. Playing songs everyone loves and seeing their faces as they enjoy themselves, naturally some people are shy, but when you put on that one song that they love and have to dance to, then see them up on the dancefloor for the rest of the night. 

    How far in advance should I book my DJ?
     
    The short answer is as soon as possible, the earlier you get in touch the better chance you have of securing your date. I get very busy throughout the year with up to 70 events (mostly weddings), corporate, charity, fundraising events and parties. 

    Can I make my own playlist?
     
    Absolutely. You can indeed, you can send me any special requests e.g. first/ last dance. I can supply a top 100 song chart to help get you started. If you do want to use a playlist send it in well in advance of the wedding day, as some songs might be rare and can take some time to get. Also you can send in songs you absolutely want to avoid e.g. (the birdie song) which is my personal favourite!  

    What are the top 5 most popular floor fillers?
     
    Hmmm. A tough question 
    1.. Proud mary - Tina Turner ( definitely a big hit with the ladies ) 
    2.. Macarena- Los del Rio ( gets the whole floor dancing together ) 
    3.. Uptown Funk- Bruno Mars ( will get those hips moving ) 
    4.. Maniac- Mark Mc Cabe ( definitely one for the end of the night) 
    5.. Y.M.C.A- The village people ( everyone loves singing & dancing to this )   

    Anything else you want to add? 
    I can also supply a lovely wedding candy cart, wedding post box, wishing well, light up LOVE letters, As a wedding Dj for years I have made a lot of contacts in the business and work with a lot of other wedding suppliers, including, wedding bands, photographers, photobooths, videographers, etc. and can work with them to give you the best quote for your big day!

    Ireland Party DJs
    Jonathan 
    085-1280092 
    Facebook https://www.facebook.com/irelandpartydjs/?fref=ts
    Web www.irelandpartydjs.com 
    Email irelandpartydj@gmail.com

    Tara Long & Timmy Doona

                                                            A Wedding day full of surprises
                                                                Tara Long & Timmy Doona
                                               October 3, 2015, The Inn at Dromoland, Co.Clare

    Despite a brief meeting when they were 16, Tara Long, a special needs assistant in the Limerick School for the Deaf, met the love her life, Timmy Doona, for a second time at a party in Dublin in 2008. That night, after sparks flew and a bit of flirting got the ball rolling, the pair exchanged numbers (after a piggy back) and soon an official first date was set. 

    After many years together, Timmy knew Tara was the girl for him. Timmy, a Kerry man, took Limerick native Tara for a walk along Rossbeigh Beach in Kerry. Their dog George joined them. Timmy asked Tara to wait up from the beach for a few minutes while he wrote Will you marry me in the sand. Tara said it was so romantic, and of course she said yes! The date was set for October 3, 2015, with the ceremony in St. Johns Cathedral Limerick followed by a reception at the Inn at Dromoland, Co. Clare. 
    The day finally arrived and Tara looked absolutely stunning in her dress from Sefton House Bridal in Limerick. Timmy scrubbed up well too with a dapper suit from Esquire Menswear on Roches street, Limerick. Both Tara and Timmy are deaf and Irish Sign Language users. During the ceremony Tara, a member of Limericks famous Deaf Choir, surprised Timmy with a special performance on the altar from the choir, which included Tara front and center. A video of this finally made its way around social media and major news outlets and the couple were like mini celebrities throughout Limerick for weeks after. It (the performance) was very emotional, recalls Tara. Their first dance was Run by Leona Lewis. This song was number one the day they met and it was also performed by the choir. 

    The Bridal Party 
    BRIDESMAIDS Aisling Long, Leanne Long, Jenny Loughran, Danielle O Conner and Hayleigh Madigan 
    GROOMSMEN Jonathan Doona, Ian Long, Eamon Byrne, Damien O Donoghue, Jack Healy.
    FLOWERGIRLS Holly Richardson & Katie Doona 
    PAGE BOY Aidan Lawlor 

    THE WEDDING TEAM
    INVITES & UNITY CANDLES Maeve Keavey Creations 
    THE DRESS Sefton House Bridal
    SUITS Esquire Formal Menswear
    CAKE Bondy Rose Bakery
    BAND Escapade - They had the floor full all night, they were excellent.
    MAKE UP & HAIR Jimmy C Make Up & Hair Studio 
    TRANSPORT Irish Diamond Limousines 
    PHOTOGRAPHER Magnificent Moments 
    VIDEOGRAPHER S.E.S Digital Video 
     

    What was your experience at The Inn at Dromoland
     From the very beginning Claire, the wedding co-ordinator, was very helpful at the wonderful Inn at Dromoland. The meal was excellent, everyone raved about the food. The hotel could not do enough for us. They arranged music for us for the second night and the location for photographs was excellent. Amazing grounds. We could not recommend it highly enough. 
    www.theinnatdromoland.ie

    Photos courtesy of Magnificent Moments Photography

    Top tips for looking your best on your wedding day

    There are a lot of factors to contribute to you looking and feeling your best on your wedding day. Here are some tips to follow from the moment they pop the question to the minutes before you walk down the aisle!

    Healthy balanced lifestyle
    It goes without saying that drinking plenty of water, getting your five a day and throwing on the Nike's and heading out for 30 minutes a day will work wonders for the body. It's time to stop waiting for the New Year to make healthy lifestyle changes and start now. Get used to keeping a bottle of water in your handbag to have on the go, a piece of fruit at your desk as a snack and walk to work where possible. You'll feel all the more better for it. A good eight hours sleep a night will keep you feeling fresh and vibrant.

    SPF
    Just because we don't see much sun in our changeable little country, it doesn't mean that the UV rays from the sun don't break through the clouds. The famous key to healthy skin is to wear SPF and with most foundations and make up brands containing the sun protection, you're bound to have angelic skin on your big day! 

    Skincare
    It's oh so convenient to take the war paint off with a makeup wipe and head to bed at the end of a long day. However, it will leave your skin crying out for TLC. Get into a routine of cleansing and moisturising to keep your blemishes at bay and get any remaining makeup out of your pores. Keeping your face looking fab will have you ready for your wedding day close ups.

    Time out
    Trying to balance life between work and family on top of your wedding can be a crazy time for the bride to be. In the lead up to the big day, tensions will be running high. Take a time out at least one day a week to do a non-wedding related activity that you enjoy. Go for a run, head to the cinema or call up the girls and head for a meal to clear the head. Staying sane is important so taking time out will be necessary for the busy bride to be.

    Hair and makeup trials
    There is no reason that you should be upset with your bridal look on your wedding day. Chat with your hair stylist and makeup artist about what you want and what they think will work best. Do some trials to make sure you like the look and know for certain what it will look like on the day.

    #wedding #lookgood #feelgreat #bridetobe #preparation #weddingpreparation #happy

    Ten minutes with Matthew Stephens, the diamond specialists

    What makes you different to other jewellers?
    Its the team of great people that we are so lucky to have here. I think it is the teams attention to detail in designing and making the finest and most beautiful products, offering exceptional customer service with a vast selection of the finest brands under one roof. It is the expert craftsmanship brought to you by our in-house master goldsmiths and ring designers who constantly strive to deliver with the finest diamonds all brought to, our customers with our best price guarantee. I really think its a combination of all these factors.       

    Do you offer any exclusive services for couples? 
    Our aim is to deliver a customer experience that is so unlike any other. We really offer the full package from bespoke ring design, cleaning, engraving, polishing and personal shopper experiences whereby we arrange that every tiny detail is looked after.  

    What engagement rings are you finding most popular this year? 
    The timeless classics of solitaires and 3 stones will always be favourites. With improved micro pave setting technology we have also seen Halo styles continue to grow in popularity. Both White Gold and Platinum are still the preferred choice of metals and I feel that it will stay that way for many years to come.       

    What is the average budget a couple would spend on an engagement ring? 
    We see and cater for all couples with budgets of anything from 300 - 100,000 euro with the average ring in the 4,000 - 8,000 euro range.   

    Do you see more engaged couples come through the door to pick the ring together or would the men come in themselves?  
    Its probably split 50/50. We have a lot of couples that travel from all parts of the country to find their perfect engagement ring and wedding bands. In saying that, there are still a lot of old fashioned romantics who want to keep with Tradition and choose a ring themselves that they are going to propose with. Helping them choose the ring and being part of such a special event is probably one of the best and most enjoyable parts of the job.       

    Matthew Stephens, Irelands Finest Diamond and Wedding Band Destination store, 8 O Connell Street, Limerick.
    Visit http://matthewstephens.ie/ 
    To arrange an appointment to view this incredible collection of breath taking diamonds please call 061 415583 or email 
    gabbi@matthewstephens.ie

    Writing Your Own Vows

    Writing your own vows is one of the things that every bride dreams of doing, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's easy to do. We're going to give you an easy guide full of tips on writing your own vows, with the least amount of stress possible. 

    Make them personal, but not too personal.
    Of course you want your vows to be purely about your groom/bride so you'll want to make your vows personal to the two of you. But don't make them too personal, leaving your guests feel awkward and uncomfortable.

    Put some jokes in 
    Small jokes are always a good part in wedding vows, but make sure you don't fill them up with jokes. A few jokes here and there will be enough to keep your vows lighthearted but simultaneously filled with meaning. Make sure not to use only private jokes between you and your partner or else no one will understand and will be confused. Try to use jokes that your friends and family know about and can laugh at. 

    Don't write them the night before
    One of the worst things you can do after deciding to write your own vows is to leave it until the last moment. Don't do that. You'll only end up stressed and panicked. As you get nearer and nearer to your big day, make sure you have a plan done out that you can have handy and add to when you think of things. This way you can make sure all your best ideas actually go into your vows, and not just the ones that you can remember the night before. 

    Read other vows for inspiration
    No one expects you to come up with your vows without reading any other vows first. Search the internet or get your hands on a wedding vows book to help give you some ideas on where to start and what exactly a wedding vow is. If you find one that you really like you could even incorporate some of the ideas from it onto your own vows.

    Don't make them too long 
    You don't want your family and friends getting bored after you keep talking and talking about your partner. Keep your vows to two minutes max. This way, people will still be tuned in to what you're saying by the time you're finished. And by cutting it down to a certain time, you can cut out any parts that mightn't be that important and relevant as others. 

    No Cliches
    You want your vows to reflect you and your relationship, and that won't happen if you're using the standard cliches that everyone uses. You might think you're being original, but you're not. Keep it simple and personal, and representative of your relationship.

    Practice out loud
    This is very important as it allows you to find out if you've written your vows too complicated or if they're hard to say. Practice them in front of a friend and take any constructive criticism that they might have, they'll want to have the best vows possible. This might also take some of the nerves off you if you're uncomfortable with public speaking. 

    #bridesoflimerick #wedding #vows

    The Right Way to Treat Your Single Guest

    It's your big day, you are all loved up. While sipping cocktails in the Copper Room on O'Connell Street with your single friend and shopping for your honeymoon clothes at the Crescent with your yet attached sister naturally everything out of your mouth is going to be wedding related. And that's all wonderful. Just consider her a little when it comes to your big day. Here is a list of what NOT to do to her on your wedding day.

    DO NOT

    Force a hairstyle or dress on her that looks awful, even if it does suit your theme

    Refer to your single years in your speech as a desperate, awful, lonely, bad time in your life

    Buy couple only favours such as a his/her candle set or anything else couple focused

    Cut the plus one on the invite just because she is single doesn't mean she doesn't have anyone to bring

    Forget to talk to your single friend during your big day. It would mean so much to her if you talked about a night out, just the two of you when you're back from your honeymoon

    Force her to catch the bouquet because she might not be in the mood to show everyone in the room that she's on the market

    Sit her with your single cousin (unless hes an absolute catch) thinking they will be a match made in heaven. No doubt she would much prefer to sit with people she knows

    Exclude her from photographs after all she has been your friend through all of this so now it's time to make her feel included and part of your big day

    End the music on the night with a slow dance because a single lady doesn't want to be standing alone at the side of the dance floor while all couples get it on to Marvin Gaye.

    Forget your single friend in your speeches if she has been really supportive to you through the whole wedding process but please don't it end with "and lads, she's single!"

    Ten Minutes with "Hair by Sharon", Sharon McDonnell


    Tell us a bit about yourself.
    I started hairdressing back in 2008. In 2011 I moved on to finish my training in the Bellissimo Academy in Limerick. Here I was afforded some unreal opportunities like doing hair for the 2012 Rose of Tralee competition. Once I received my qualification from the World and Irish Hairdressing Federations I started working in Bellissimo as a hairstylist where I was afforded even more unreal opportunities including doing hair for fashion shows by Celia Holman Lee and Ursula Stokes, more education and I gained experience in teaching in the Bellissimo Academy.   In February 2016 I started working for myself as "Hair by Sharon". I am just starting out in my new adventure but I am so excited about it and I look forward to seeing what the future holds. I am really looking forward to more educational opportunities in all aspects of hairdressing, maybe the odd competition but more importantly, I am really looking forward to meeting new and existing clients because it is my clients that make my day and keep me on my toes. That's the best part!  

    What tips can you give for someone booking to book a hair stylist?

    When looking to book a hairstylist for your wedding day you should -> Do your research!
    What salons/stylists are near your wedding location? What stylists are willing to travel to you?
    Check their Facebook and Instagram pages for pictures of their work -> Is it work that you love?
    Do these kind of styles work for your dress and your taste?
    Is the stylist you chose available on your big day? You may want to ring anything up to 10 months in advance to be sure you get the stylist you want because stylists can book up real fast!  

    How many weeks before the wedding should one book a trial?
    By the time it comes to booking a hair trial you should already know the bulk of how your wedding day will go, theme, bridesmaid colours and most importantly your dress and hairpieces.

    3 months before your wedding is more than enough time to have a trial done. It allows you a bit more time to imagine your big day in a little more detail but it also allows you the extra couple of weeks to book one last trial (if needed) to tweak any last details you may have been unsure about. Why not book your trial on the same day as a dress fitting so you can get a much more real vision as to how beautiful you will look on the big day!

    Do you have a salon or are you solely a mobile service?

    I am based in "The Salon Shannon", Shannon, Co. Clare, where I work by appointment only. I am also happy to travel to you for your big day so that you have one less thing to worry about. It gives a nicer, smoother and more comfortable flow to your morning. Everyone loves a pj day so get the fluffy slippers out, relax and let me do all the work!   

    How many of the bridal party can you do at the same time?

    When arranging your booking we will discuss how many people will be getting their hair done by me on the day. We will arrange a time that allows for us to be finished early for pictures, visitors and getting dressed so there is no worrying about delays. However, if you have a larger number of people getting their hair done on the day and timing may be a worry, I work alongside some amazing stylists so if needed I can happily recommend one of them to come along too.
     

    For bookings you can contact me on 083 8330636.
    You can also reach me on my Facebook page "Hair by Sharon at The Salon Shannon" (https://www.facebook.com/HairbySharon16/?fref=ts)
    Email Address: hairbysharon2016@outlook.com  

    A Wedding Thought Box to Help With Your Planning

    By Michaela Keating

    Planning a wedding can be stressful and exhausting, especially when trying to ensure that every detail is perfect. From the moment you got engaged (and maybe years in advance) brides start thinking about the finer details of their big day. However, life gets in the way and it's east to forget the photographer you liked or a cake maker you found out about from a friend.

    A 'Wedding Thought' box can help you in your wedding planning especially for couples who have a long engagement and find it hard to remember certain vendors that they had previously heard of.

    Things to put into the wedding box

    Business Cards
    Whether you're getting married in the coming months or not for a couple of years, business cards, and contact information belonging to vendors of interest are vital. Gathering up a few names of florists, make up artists, beauty salons, photographers, cake providers etc. can save you a lot of time when you sit down to decide on what vendors you are going with.

    Magazine Clippings
    Every bride to be finds inspiration from different places but magazines can be very helpful in allowing you to pinpoint a theme or colour scheme. 

    Cards/Invitations
    Each season brings with it a new wave of wedding invites through the letterbox. Some may tickle your fancy, so hold on to them and look into using the invite designers you liked when the time comes to organising your own big day.

    Fabric Samples
    For the bride who wants a custom made wedding dress fabrics and patterns are very important. After popping in to your local fabric store, hold on to samples to help you decide what fabrics you will be using when the time comes to put together the ever so important wedding dress. 

    Wedding Favour Ideas 
    Many couples like to push the boat out with personalised or quirky wedding favours for their guests. Keep photos, samples or write down favours to your liking so that you don't forget the quirky bits.

    Song Names
    For many couples, choosing the first dance song can be difficult to decide on. If you're having a long engagement, take down the names of songs you both enjoy now, so that when it comes to choosing you can add last year's ballad to your list of possibilities.

    Ten Minutes with Hen Party Hotties owner, Orla O'Sullivan

    If you're looking for an exciting activity for your hen party then look no further! We sat down with the brains behind "Hen Party Hotties", Orla O'Sullivan to find out more about this fun and unique service. 

    When and why did you set up business?
    I set up the business 3 years ago. I had recently got married myself and I began to notice the lack of hen party activities that were available in Limerick. Nearly every hen party include an activity as part of their weekend of fun. I started to create my business plan and Hen Party Hotties was launched! Limerick is a great city for a Hen Party, it just needed to offer fun, creative and unique activities during the day to secure group bookings. I like to think Hen Party Hotties offers this to the Irish Hen market. 

    Tell us about services you provide?

    At Hen Party Hotties we offer unique, fun and creative hen party activities. These range from Masquerade Workshop, Fancy Knickers Workshop, Draw A Nude, Sculpture A Nude, Garter Workshop, Dance Workshop, Vintage Tea Party, Photoshoot, Bridal Boot Camp and Knitting Workshop. 
    Girls enjoy participating in a creative activity that they wouldn't normally get the chance to do with their close friends, whilst enjoying a celebratory drink in honour of the bride to be.
     

    Charge Per Person?

    Activities start from 20epp

    Is it mobile service?
    Yes we can travel to any county in Ireland. Book hen date in advance to avoid disappointment.

    Contact Orla on 087 652 2501
    Email: Limerickhenpartyhotties@gmail.com

    Check out their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/LimerickHenPartyHotties/
    Instagram: @henpartyhotties

    Limerick Travel's top tips for honeymoon planning

    1. When should I start planning my honeymoon?
    The sooner the better. Planning ahead allows you time to budget accordingly and get necessary documents needed should you not have them. Planning ahead also enables you to confirm that "one of a kind room" many resorts offer making your honeymoon even more special. 

    2.Have an idea of your geography
    Seychelles, Maldives and Fiji are amazing honeymoon destinations, but not if you have less than one week for your honeymoon. An exotic location is ideal if you have enough travel time and don't mind long flights. Some locations require over a day travelling time and you also need to adjust to time difference.

    3. Know your budget
    Airline fares play a significant role when planning your budget. If you are a frequent traveller, save your mileage and try use your accumulated mile points. Many credit cards offer airline mileage awards that may assist you as well.
     
    4. What kind of resort are you looking for?
    Unique and boutique? All inclusive? Many resorts offer all inclusive options, allowing you to know ahead of time exactly how much you will be spending. Some resorts go one step further and include excursions or catamaran sailings with their all-inclusive packages.

    5. What kind of deposit do I need?
    When is the final payment due? When do I need to pay? Depends on the honeymoon you have chosen. If you are choosing an amazing adult only, all-inclusive, most tour companies only require a minimum deposit with final payment usually due 45 days prior to departure. If selecting, say, an exotic Safari in Africa, payments may vary. Airlines dictate the rules for payment of airline tickets. Most require full payment within 24 hours of making a reservation. 

    6. Do I need a visa, do I need vaccinations?
    Some destinations do require visas; your travel professional will be able to advise you of that requirement and assist in obtaining them should you need. Also important is what type of passport you are travelling under, many countries are now requiring passports valid six months after entering the country. It is always best to confirm with your doctor with regard to vaccinations, if where you are travelling is an exotic destination.

    7. I dont need insurance, this is my honeymoon and I will never cancel.
    There are hundreds of circumstances that could cause you to cancel your trip, return home early, or force you to seek emergency medical treatment wile travelling. Travel insurance provides protection for your travel investment. Travel insurance also provides the peace of mind that you are not alone when you are really in need.

    To book your dream honeymoon contact Sinead Carne at Limerick Travel today on 061 204 444

    Ask the Expert: Louise Brooks of Brooks Photography

    Louise Brooks took over the well-known studio of Brooks photography in 2004 and has since built a reputation of her own-specialising in weddings and portraiture. Brides of Limerick have had the pleasure of working with Louise Brooks on several weddings, and we managed to catch up with her despite a busy schedule to ask her some questions about all aspects of the business.   

    How important is it for couples to be comfortable while getting professional photographs?
       
    All the best lighting & beautiful locations will pale into insignificance if the couple look uncomfortable or the smiles appear forced or contrived. It is the most important aspect for me when photographing people to get expressions that are both flattering and natural.   

    What advice would you give to brides/grooms who hate getting their photograph taken?
       
    Like anything, a little practice can make all the difference!  We include a pre wedding shoot to all our couples with the aim of running through a few tips on posing etc. that make all the difference to how they look in their photographs. Some folk maybe more sensitive to flash and there are options around that which we can work on in advance of the day etc. I also highly recommend booking professional hair and make-up people that are familiar with working weddings and are familiar with the best products so you photograph looking your best.  

    What should couples take into consideration when booking their wedding photographer?
       
    Aside from choosing a photographers style that appeals to you, it is also important to remember on the day you will be spending quite a lot of time with this person too! Every wedding is unique to that couple and it is taking the time to understand what is Special to them that allows me to best capture their day- in the way they have envisaged. I have been referred to as the friend at the wedding that was handy with the camera! I see that as a great compliment and always work as unobtrusively as possible.   It is also important to ask a few questions such as, have they back up equipment, do they have an assistant, have they shot many weddings, are they insured.   

    Louise Brooks Photography,
     
    Clonroad, 
    Ennis, 
    Co. Clare

    Facebook           Louise Brooks Photography 
    Twitter                Lou Brooks Photos                       
    Website              www.louisebrooksphotography.com 
    Telephone          065 6821666  

    Something old, New, borrowed and Blue..


    By Emma Doran
    Its one of those traditions that every bride loves searching for that something old, something new, borrowed and blue. Although the dress is mainly the something new, people have become very creative and sentimental in all other categories.We asked our Brides of Limerick family to share with us their something old, new, borrowed and blue.

    Caroline Murphy chose a picture of her late father as her something old, printed as material and stitched inside her dress right beside her heart. Her something borrowed was her mothers bracelet.

    Michelle McGrath borrowed a diamond pendant from her mum. She had vintage sunglasses as her something old and she attached her birdcage veil to a blue comb in her hair.

    Loraine Higgins attached her late grandmothers locket to her flowers. This served as her something old.

    Carmel Whyte 
    chose her grandmothers wedding ring as her something old and her new was her dress. Her borrowed item was a necklace from her sister-in-law and her blue was her wedding garter.

    Susan Nash borrowed a pair of rosary beads that her mother received on her first holy communion. Her old item was a pair of earrings she got as a young girl and she wore blue shoes.

    Mary O Dwyer
     borrowed a five euro note from her brother minutes before her wedding because she forgot about it. It had a blue European flat on it so it covered the blue too. 

    Fran Brennan borrowed her wedding dress from her cousin in England. Her something new was her wedding ring. Her something old was a picture of herself and her sister who passed away the year before the wedding. 

    Karen Moynihan O Dwyer combined her something old and borrowed into one. She used the same Winston Churchill silver coin that her parents used on their wedding day.

    Niamh Maguire Sheehan chose her Jimmy Choo shoes as her something new. Her something old was the first ever love letter her boyfriend wrote to her when they were 14 - she pinned it to the hem of her dress. She borrowed her silver wedding bag from her best friend and her something blue was her underwear.


    Spring 2016-Our Most Exciting Issue to Date

    Spring has arrived! The excitement is blossoming here at the Brides of Limerick office in the run up to our 500 euro GOLDEN TICKET Giveaway. We have hidden a golden ticket to the value of 500 euro in one spring issue of Brides of Limerick, which the lucky bride can use against any supplier in the magazine. 

    Will you be the lucky reader that finds the golden ticket? 

    That’s not all, this issue is bursting with tips and ideas for the perfect spring wedding, whether its pastel colours for a spring palette or new trends for 2016, we wanted to start this year with a bang and spring 2016 is one of our most exciting issues to date. 
    We also have plenty of fun articles that we are sure you’ll be able to relate to, whether it’s dealing with monster-in-laws, or remembering all those frogs you kissed before you met your prince-you don’t want to miss out!


    The real weddings featured in this issue are diverse and we guarantee you’ll be inspired when you see how these fantastic couples celebrated their big day. So head to your local newsagent and pick up a copy, you just might be our winner! 

    Sold in shops all over Limerick for 3.95

    Alternative Grooms Wear Pieces

    By Michaela Keating

    Looking fabulous on your wedding day is one of the most important things for all grooms. We have come up with some ideas to make sure you look more dapper than ever walking down that aisle!   

    Check shirt
     A check shirt may be a staple piece of clothing for some men on their days off work, but these old reliable are evolving into one of the boho wedding must haves for men this season. Soft nudes and light earthy tones are what the boho theme is all about, so what could be more fitting than a beige and white check shirt for the groom or grooms to tie in with the theme? With their variety of colours and patterns, a check shirt is something to be considered for the non traditional couple. Still not sold? Think the sexy lumberjack and you’ll be running down the aisle to see your man!  

    Quirky pocket squares
     Pocket squares are always a popular way to spruce a mans suit but why not think outside the box and find an original pocket square to make yourselves stand out. Have the wedding date embroidered on to the right hand corner or choose a print with patterns of your pet so they can be there in spirit. The possibilities are endless!  

    Tweed 
    It may not be every mans fabric of choice for a wedding suit but tweed is a major trend this season for guys that are tying the knot. Brown toned tweed is the perfect way to introduce autumn  winter elements into the grooms look. If a full tweed suit is a little too much to handle, why not add slight touches, like the waist coat of a three-piece or in a pocket square.

    Braces Autumn is one of two seasons where we can dare to risk leaving off an extra layer on account of the weather. With the busy flow to a wedding day, its best to feel cool and collected and for a groom or both grooms, saying I do minus a suit jacket is the best thing for it. Braces are a long time friend of the suit and if leaving the jacket behind, a good set of braces will do just the trick in keeping the groom formal yet comfortable on the day. Tie the colour in with the theme or let each groom use this as an opportunity to express his own personal style when choosing the colour or pattern.

    Should you invite your EX to your wedding?

    By Kelly Hynes

    Ah weddings, nothing brings people together better like two people sharing nuptials, throw in an ex or two and watch your elegant reception turn into a reality TV show. 

    Are you in a position where your ex might be on your guest list? 

    Generally, inviting an ex to your wedding is seen as a no-no out of respect for your fiances feelings. However, life sometimes throws these awkward situations where your ex is now a close friend, is in a relationship with your best friend or cousin, or is the parent of your children from your previous relationship. This is where the common rule becomes complicated. If you are considering inviting your ex to your wedding, think strongly about your reasons why. 

    Discuss inviting this person thoroughly with your fiance in private before you send out any invitations. Encourage them to be totally honest about how they feel about the presence of your ex at their wedding. Think about how you would feel if they wanted to or felt they had to invite their ex, would it make your day uncomfortable? What kind of history do you have with this person? What kind of history does your fiance have with this person? Will it affect the behavior of your guests? How will your family behave around your ex considering they might have known them very well from the past? Will there be inappropriate jokes about the one who got away or old stories about how you and your ex were caught kissing behind the shed when you were younger. Inhibitions can be well lost where alcohol is flowing and this may lead to conflict or feelings of loss and regret. Some exs might be offended to be invited to a day of celebration with a new person, so think about how much salt you might be unintentionally rubbing in the wound. Every single case is different and there is no straightforward logic to human relationships. 

    Respect your fiancés wishes as you wish them to respect yours. If you have an understanding partner who is comfortable enough to be okay with your ex attending your wedding, thats great. But it must be reinforced how huge this expectation this is and means that the feelings of the person you are marrying should come first. 

    Here are some tips to survive the day if you decide to invite your ex:
    Your fiance should be your main focus throughout the day     
    Reassure your ex he/she can bring a guest    
    Dont dance with your ex      
    Pay attention to where you seat your ex, try not to seat them at primary tables, unless its for child minding purposes. Even then it might be more suitable to ask a family member.  

    Stressed?

    By: Kelly Hynes   

    Are you as cool as a cucumber or a complete bridezilla in the run up to your nuptials? Either way dont worry. Between decision making, figuring out who to include and finding the perfect dress, your wedding journey is bound to be an emotional rollercoaster! Unless you are an event planner, you have probably never planned a whole day for such a large group of people. So dont fret, we give you our most reassuring guide to keeping calm!   

    Organisation 
    Try keep a copy or note of everything you have booked or ordered for the big day. Get a folder and keep all your wedding receipts and documents in it. Your anxiety could be reduced in half from this simple step! With so much going on, it is so easy to lose track and before you know it you have no idea how much money you re spending and what you re spending it on! Try not to leave things to the last minute so that your wedding morning can be just about getting ready and enjoying yourself.
     
     Positivity
     
    This should be the most positive and happiest time of your life, yet so many people get caught up in anxiety, fear and frustration. Try to spend your time with positive, enthusiastic people who will support you in the lead up to the special date. Ignore any judgement or criticisms that may be sent your way, your wedding day should reflect YOUR tastes and wishes. Your family or friends might mean well by voicing their concerns regarding your wedding, so hear them out. If you dont want to take their advice on board, dont feel obliged to.

    Ban wedding talk 
    Take a break from all things wedding related every once in a while. If you re binge watching Dont Tell the Bride and Say Yes to the Dress you are guaranteed to go insane, (or drive your fiance insane). If wedding excitement is turning into wedding dread, plan some quality time with your fiance and ban all wedding talk. Forgetting about your wedding for a while will help you re-charge and come back to planning feeling a lot more enthusiastic.  

    Lose control 
    There are some aspects to a wedding that nobody can control, such as the weather and how your guests behave. A shower of rain as you arrive at your reception is a discouraging thought, but you have to accept that it is a possibility and will not ruin your day. If you are a worrier, try to replace worries about what could go wrong with things you are looking forward to e.g. the honeymoon. Worrying amplifies anxiety, and does not prevent your fears from happening, so think less worry-happy bride. Finally, dont try to do everything yourself, delegate some jobs to friends and family if they have free time and proceed to enjoy every minute.  

    Planning made easy

    Not all brides have the luxury of time on their hands. Some brides just dont like planning other brides want those special touches put into their big day and more often than not these brides hire a wedding planner. Brides of Limerick is pleased to outline the duties of a wedding planner and the various services planners provide.

    What does a wedding planner do?
    At first, the wedding planner meets with a couple or perhaps the bride and her parents to verify what type of budget the couple has and what type of wedding they would like. In view of the budget the wedding planner makes suggestions as to churches or other locations-possible clergy members or others lawfully commissioned to perform weddings, locations for receptions, types of wedding cakes, photography services, musicians or music services, and catering services.

    How much is a Wedding Planner? 
    It is standard for a wedding planner to charge 10 per cent-20 per cent of the wedding budget. However it can depend on the amount of planning the bride and groom wish for the planner to partake in. 

    What constitutes a good Wedding Planner?
    A good wedding planner is someone who will listen to your needs. Its also someone that won't talk over you.
    A great planner will focus their complete attention on you and your big day regardless of what number of customers he/she might have, A good planner is one who will follow your budget and achieve all your desires. A good planner will make themselves accessible to you at any time of the day for any inquiry regardless of how minor. 

    What are the steps to hiring a Planner?
    When a decision is made to hire a planner, the planner will sit down and examine the couples budget, colour scheme, theme and ideas for the big day. 

    A contract will then be signed and the couples wedding will be in good hands!

    She wears the pants!

    Why bridal pant suits and jumpsuits are this season’s biggest trend!  

    By Michaela Keating
     


    For the contemporary bride, standing out on her big day and expressing her personality through what she wears is a must.  Not all brides to be dream of a fitted mermaid gown or a draping silk number to wear on their wedding day and luckily for those ladies, there is a super sleek alternative; the suit!
    Trousers have been mixing up the bridal catwalk of top designers in the past few seasons ; with Kendall Jenner famously closing Chanel’s  Fall Haute Couture show in a cream bridal pant suit with cascading veil.

     Next season brings  with it a fabulous choice of tapered legs and double breasted bridal blazers in all their glory. Crop tops and cigarette leg trousers are also a match made in heaven; add some 3D floral embellishment to embrace the season that’s in it whilst adding a beautiful feminine touch to the look .
    A one piece jumpsuit is also stunning for the more modern bride. Jumpsuits are best suited to tall ladies with long pins, so accentuate your best assets strut down the aisle in a crisp white one piece.   If you’re willing to take two steps outside the box, think coloured separates or a three piece suit. Accessories can also add that extra touch of class to the look such as feathered headpieces or statement necklaces. There’s plenty to play around with if you are going for this look.  

    Suit up sister!      

    Mini Moons

    By Michaeala Keating
    Our top places to take your little tykes before you jet off on a holiday for two!


    DISNEYLAND PARIS
     
    It’s no surprise that Disneyland Paris is the most visited theme park in France and all of Europe with its numerous attractions, places to eat and of course the all important characters. A visit to Disneyland is a dream come true for most children (and even their parents!) so few days spent with Mickey, Minnie and the gang makes for a perfect break away with the family. The website offers plenty of offers that extend as far as next year making it the perfect choice for couples planning to head away with their little monkeys after their wedding. 

    LEGOLAND
     
    With six Legoland resorts worldwide and three more due to open between 2016 and 2017, you can take your pick as to where you would like to go from; Denmark, The UK, California, Germany, Florida and Malaysia. The Legoland Parks are aimed at kids aged 11 and under, with attractions suited best to younger kids. Lego is an all time favourite throughout the generations and is sure to bring out the inner child in all the family! 

    TAYTO PARK
     
    If you’re looking for something more close to home a visit to Tayto Park should do just the trick! Ireland’s only theme park has had been highly praised since it opened in Ashbourne, Co Meath in 2010. The park boasts rollercoaster attractions for all age groups and is home to many animals in its on campus zoo! From birds to mammals and the Cu Chulainn rollercoaster, a visit to Tayto Park is the perfect spot to take the kids on a mini break away. 

    KILDARE MAZE ACTIVITY PARK
     
    Leinster’s largest hedge maze is an amazing attraction located in North Kildare. With great prices, this is a budget busting break away with the kids. The park has a range of attractions including crazy golf, adventure trails, zipwire, picnic areas and of course the hedge maze.  The park is open seven days a week in June, July and August  and weekends only in September. Adult admission is €8 with children’s admission costing €6, a visit to Kildare with the family is a perfect money-saving weekend away.   

    DELPHI ADVENTURE RESORT
     
    Delphi Adventure Resort is located in Connemara, Co Galway surrounded by stunning views of the West’s mountainous countryside. Delphi offers a wide range of activities to suit all ages and abilities making it the perfect break away for families with ranging age groups. If you are looking for some alone time, let the kids enjoy the variety of activities while you slip away to the spa to relax with some fabulous treatments and enjoy some post wedding chill out time. 

    DINGLE OCEANWORLD AQUARIUM
     
    Dingle is one of Ireland’s most popular spots to visit and with plenty to do for the family; it should definitely make it to your mini moon list. Dingle has many attractions to keep the family entertained with local food and fabulous hotels, it’s ideal for a few days away. Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium is perfect for small kids who are fascinated by all things fishy! The aquarium hosts Ireland’s largest selection of sharks and is also home to penguins, turtles, starfish and plenty more sea animals and is sure to impress the kids.

    The Brides of Limerick Wedding Industry Award Winners 2015

    On Friday, May 8th, 2015, 320 of Limerick finest wedding industry people came out to see who would walk away with an award. A huge night of celebration, organized by Gillybean Weddings and Events, was had by all in the Limerick Strand Hotel while Celia Holman Lee graciously presented the special awards on the night. The MC for the evening was Limerick’s own Catriona Tierney and publisher April Drew was on hand to greet all the award winners as they came on stage.

    Plans are already being put in place for the 2016 award ceremony. Congratulations to all the finalists and the winners on the night.

    Accessory Designer of Year - Magpie and Moon

    Alternative Cake Supplier of the Year - MM Cookies

    Alternative Wedding Invites of the Year - Ralph McMahon

    Alternative Wedding Venue of the Year - AnnaCarriga Estate

    Beauty Salon of the Year - Plush Beauty

    Bridal Suite of the Year - Dunraven Arms Hotel

    Bride of the Year - Jenny Cox

    Bridesmaid Dress Supplier of the Year - Kate’s Kloset

    Cake Designer of the Year - Bondy Rose

    Candy Cart Supplier of the Year - Vintage Ice Cream Heaven & Candy Heaven

    Church Décor Supplier of the Year - Classical Candlelight Church Décor

    Civil Partnership of the Year - Sean Mills and John Gavin

    DIY Designer of the Year - The Crafty Koop

    DJ of the Year - Munster DJ Hire

    Flowergirl Dress Supplier of the Year - Marettes

    Front Page Bride of the Year – Louise McCarthy and John Keating

    Front Page Image of the Year Photographer -Kenneth Baker of Baker Photography

    Function Room of the Year - Bunratty Castle Hotel

    Goldsmith of the Year - Gleeson Goldsmith  

    Hair and Beauty Salon of the Year - Catherine Hickey Make Up and Hair Studio

    Hair Extension Supplier of the Year - Catwalk

    Hair Salon of the Year - Bobs and Brows

    Hair Stylist of the Year - Ciara Downes

    Hen Party Venue of the Year - Limerick Racecourse

    Honeymoon Provider of the Year - Limerick Travel

    Hotel of the Year Outside of Limerick The Falls Hotel

    Humanist Wedding of the Year - Caroline Clarke and Pat Browne

    Ice-Cream Supplier of the Year - High Nelly

    Illusionist of the Year – Steve Spade   

    Image of the Year – Cardam Photography

    Jewellers of the Year - Matthew Stephens

    Kids Focused Wedding Supplier of the Year - Last Minute Minders

    Make Up Artist of the Year - Catherine Hickey

    Mobile Beauty Supplier of the Year - Beauty Brought 2 You

    Mother of the Bride Supplier of the Year - Sinead’s Boutique

    Newcomer Photographer of the Year - Memory Lane Photography

    Photobooth Supplier of the Year - Sunshine Candy Cart

    Photographer of the Year - Horsfall Photography

    Runner Up- Beauty Salon of the Year Radiance Beauty Clinic

    Runner Up Bridal Suite of the Year - Inn at Dromoland

    Runner Up Cake Designer of the Year - Celina’s Cakes

    Runner up Function Room of the Year - Radisson Blu Hotel

    Runner up Hotel of the Year Outside of Limerick- The Brehon Hotel

    Runner Up Make Up Artist of the Year - Siobhan Brady

    Suit Supplier of the Year - Esquire Formal Menswear

    Unique Wedding Entertainer of the Year - The Singing Chef

    Unique Wedding Service of the Year - Boudoir Darlings

    Urban Wedding Venue of the Year - Absolute Hotel

    Videographer of the Year - PVP Digital

    Wedding Alterations of the Year - Kathleen O’Brien Alterations

    Wedding Band of the Year - Escapade

    Wedding Blogger of the Year - Trevor Birmingham

    Wedding Car Supplier of the Year - Irish Diamond Limousine

    Wedding Celebrant of the Year - Jayesta Ceremonies

    Wedding Ceremony Musician of the Year - Kerry Jane Hurley

    Wedding Coordinator of the Year - Elaina Fitzgerald

    Wedding Coordinator of the Year Outside of Limerick- Barbara Riordan

    Wedding Dress Supplier of the Year - The Little White Dress Bridal Salon

    Wedding Fair of the Year -The Mid West Bridal Exhibition

    Wedding Fascinator Designer of the Year - Ursula Looby

    Wedding Fitness Supplier of the Year - Educogym Corbally

    Wedding Floral Designer of the Year - Grettals Petals  

    Wedding Garden of the Year - The Greenhills Hotel

    Wedding Nails Designer of the Year - The Nail Sanctuary

    Wedding of the Year - Elaine Keogh and Wayne Anderson

    Wedding Shoe Supplier of the Year - Serendipity

    Wedding Stationery Designer of the Year - McNamara Printers

    Wedding Venue of the Year Castletroy Park Hotel AND Limerick Strand Hotel


    SPECIAL AWARDS

    Most Likely to Succeed Award - Jimmy Collins Make Up Artist

    Newcomer Business of the Year - Invites by Jen Stationery Company

    Wedding Personality of the Year - David Shelly GM of Bunratty Castle Hotel

    Businesss Woman of the Year Award- Marie Madigan of La Bella Beauty

    Business Man of the Year Award- Dan Lawless of Lawless Flowers

    Wedding Business of the Year – The Bridal Emporium

    Editor’s Choice Award – Virginia’s Bridal

    Wedding Lifetime Achievement Award- Patricia Irwin of Ring O’Roses

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