Hello – I’ve been so MIA recently, well only on here and Instagram, I’ve absolutely been showing up to all the mummy duties I’ve landed myself in!
If you follow me on Instagram a few weeks back I shared my new little venture, tobi & ro, a pop up floral studio. Yes, in amongst family and freelance life I have been training with the fabulous Jil from Flower School NI to learn (the very beginnings) of the wonderful world of floristry. I hosted my very first pop up shop last weekend in R.Nook in the Linen Green. I sold out by 2pm so as you can imagine I was thrilled and I’m super excited to do it all over again very soon.
Anyway, back to blogging. I’ve been doing my own head in recently reading about the world of blogging and where it’s going. No one knows for sure, but I don’t remember starting this whole thing off to do anything more than share my knowledge and insights on the NI wedding industry, as well as gorgeous real weddings, so for the foreseeable that’s exactly what I intend to do! Today though I’ve been having a little online hunt for some spring wardrobe essentials that will see me through to summer – it’s my birthday next week so you know, planning ahead 😉
Have a great weekend and see you next week, I’ll be back with a fab Dublin wedding! Em x
This weeks wedding has an international feel. The couple, Caroline and Vincent, met in Australia, married on the glorious North Coast and live in Paris – how’s that for life goals!
Their wedding day had all the vibes of a beach wedding with an effortless and elegant style, impressive florals from The Rosehip and Berry and spectacular views over Portstewart Strand from their cool reception spot, Harry’s Shack, such a fab place for a wedding reception.
Thanks to Gillian and Tim from Gather & Tides for sharing their stunning images with us.
Couple: Caroline + Vincent Rivet
“We met in Sydney, Australia. We had both moved into the same house a few weeks apart. Vincent was studying for his Master’s in financial mathematics and I was travelling and working. We both moved back to our respective countries before I decided to move to Paris permanently.”
“I proposed to Vincent on the East Strand at sunset. I’ve never been very romantic and just wanted to propose very simply.”
“Our top priority was guest enjoyment definitely which included the venue choice. So many people travelled miles to come and we just wanted everyone to have a great time and be by the sea. We had to show off the beautiful North coast.
With Vincent’s family being French we wanted to have lots of local music so that was another top priority. We had Hannah McPhillimy at the church with her beautiful voice, The Outlaws with their traditional Irish music for the drinks reception which went down a treat with everyone and Discobeard for the party, they were amazing and really got everyone dancing.
We wanted a friendly, relaxed, fun and beachy feel but still elegant. Games on the beach, Donal and Harry’s Shack really managed the whole vibe for us. Everything was so easy with them. They set up our games and place names, talked with the florist and decorated.”
Our Budget & Suppliers
“We didn’t set a budget but we chose our suppliers carefully and all of them charge the right amount in terms of the quality of what they do. No money was wasted and we don’t regret any expenses. We were certain we wanted Rosehip and Berry, Gather and Tides, A and K Designs, Discobeard, Ball and Wolf. I loved them all on Instagram and knew they would be great, we were so happy they were all free. The Rosehip and Berry is such a talented and easy-going florist. We asked her to make the flowers beachy and relaxed and somehow she managed – a strange request for flowers! Amy from A and K Designs drew our orders of service, order of the day, table decorations and place names.”
“We very luckily found Amy Graham from A and K Designs who handled all of the little details so much more expertly and beautifully than we ever could have. It helps that she’s one of the nicest people we’ve ever met. Really went out of her way to be helpful. She wrote everyone’s names on mussel shells which really tied the whole theme together.
Vincent loves board games and games of all kinds and has really passed on this love to me so our tables were all our favourite games or games we’d played with people we loved. Like Rummikub which I always played with my Granny or Upwords which reminds me of my Nana. Amy also created our artwork for the table centres.
Games on the beach like Molkky, croquet and boules were also another of our favourite parts of the day (not that we got the chance to play much).
We wanted a cheese wheel cake as we all know a French meal isn’t complete without cheese and Donal recommended Sheridan’s Cheesemonger and they did a half French half Irish cheese wheel as we thought it was a bit more French than a traditional cake. We got two birthday cakes for the Mother of the Groom and a friend. They were amazing, made by Baked by Corri, she makes beautiful wedding cakes as well.”
The dress: Suki by Rime Arodaky
“The process was easy and exciting. I really wanted a French designer with her headquarters in Paris as I wanted to bring some Paris to our wedding. Her studio is amazing and it’s such a great experience. Her new collection is unbelievable as well for any brides in 2019/20.”
“Choose vendors wisely, Instagram is your friend. We decided everything really quickly, we wanted to get married in May so only had around 9 months to plan everything. We were very lucky that all the suppliers we wanted were available. After that it was so easy as they gave us great ideas and it all came together quite quickly.
Have fun, enjoy every moment and don’t worry about small things that might go wrong or the weather because regardless you’ll have an amazing time.
Make sure you bring little bits of yourself into the day eg. readings that really mean something to you and not just because they sound good. One of our readings was a poem my Grandpa had written for my Granny.
If you’re trying to decide whether or not to have a videographer definitely get one. Carl did such a brilliant job, it’s great to have even more memories of the day.
As Marie Kondo would say, don’t have, include or book anything or anyone that doesn’t ‘spark joy’ for you. For example, we didn’t have a photo booth even though they’re great as it wasn’t something that we’d get excited about.”
As a serial tea drinker – 6 mugs a day and I’m not even sorry about it – I have quite a fondness for a good tea drinking mug. Recently, thanks to my clumsy tendencies my mug shelf is looking a little bare, so I’ve been hunting for some really good ones to replace them. Great mug = Happy Emma!
I hope you don’t mind me firing a little touch of lifestyle content in here now and again, sometimes it’s nice to take a little break from bridal and what could be better than some tea drinking vessels – that’s about as exciting as my life gets, I’m sure yours is much wilder! 😉
Hey Monday! How are you? I hope your weekend was a relaxing one, we had the usual kids birthday parties, swimming lessons and a big roast. Half term was hectic with the kids and now they’re back and counting down the days until the Easter holidays!
David and I are skipping past Easter and are in full on planning mode for our summer holiday. We’re heading back to the South of France this year and throwing in a trip to Disney (thanks for the tickets, Santa) and a few days at the Normandy beaches this time. Lots of planning (and saving!) to do, but we live for these adventures with the kids.
Today we have the stunning wedding of Laura and Kyle. They day was relaxed and stylish with a post ceremony picnic on the lawn of Laura’s parents home, right next door to the church and has been captured beautifully by Esther Irvine. Enjoy, and have a great week!
Couple: Laura + Kyle Spence
“We met at a wedding where Kyle was best man for his friend, who was marrying one of my friends. He spent some time at our table during the evening reception, but I didn’t think any more about it. This then led to an add on Facebook and the rest speaks for itself.”
“One Saturday in the middle of January we decided to head away for the day and Kyle said he would plan where we were going. I didn’t think much about it and we headed from his house in Ballywalter past Carrickfergus and along the coastal road. As a Tyrone girl, it wasn’t an area I knew so just imaged we were heading somewhere for a walk and coffee. We arrived at Portmuck (which I had never heard of) and went for a walk along a beautiful pebble beach. It was at the end of the pebble beach that he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I was so shocked and hadn’t expected it in the slightest. To be totally honest I didn’t even look near the ring, instead hugged him, with tears in my eye. After getting over the shock and putting the ring (that he picked) on my finger we went for lunch and I don’t think a smile left my face all day. We then drove to see my family and to share the excitement with them, before heading back to Ballywalter to tell Kyle’s family. I think we drove for about 5 hours that day, but I wouldn’t change it for the world.”
“We wanted to create a day that was relaxed and that our family and friends would enjoy. I was aware that Kyle’s family would have a long drive to my church in Sixmilecross, so we wanted to pick a venue that would bring them back in the direction of home, rather that even further away, so Larchfield Estate became the obvious choice being almost half way between our families.”
Our Budget & Suppliers
“We tried to be sensible with the choices we made and to save money where we could, for example, I lived next door to the church so we decided that wedding cars were not a necessity, so used family cars to go to Larchfield instead. When we were planning, I didn’t really know what suppliers to pick, but there are lots I would definitely recommend now. We were so fortunate to work with lots of very talented, creative and helpful people.”
“Since a lot of our friends and family had travelled long distances for the church service we decided to have a light lunch afterwards. Having always lived next door to my church, we were able to use our garden for this and thankfully the weather made that possible. This was a lovely relaxed time, made even more special by the boys and girls from the class I teach joining us as a surprise.”
“I didn’t really have any idea about the style or feel of the day other than I wanted it to be relaxed and I wanted big flowers! As my dress was so heavily embellished, I thought it was best for the bridesmaid dresses to be a simple, relaxed style. We went with a soft green colour to contrast with the flowers. The girls wore simple rose gold jewellery and looked amazing.”
Eliza Jane Howell from Petticoat Lane Bridal Boutique
“To be honest this was quite a difficult part for me, not something I was overly excited about. I had no idea what type of dress I wanted and I’m naturally quite a plain person. I tried on quite a few dresses and finally settled on my dress at an Eliza Jane Howell trunk show at Petticoat Lane Bridal. Although it was almost entirely beaded from top to bottom, it had a very simple shape. I think it was quite different from what a lot of people expected me to wear. The girls in Petticoat Lane were so helpful and I would highly recommend them.”
“Try not to worry about other people and their opinions, enjoy the day and take time to soak it all in!”
Hello! It’s half-term week at Promise HQ so I’m currently juggling, or maybe struggling – I’m not really sure which one it is!
Today we’re sharing the wedding story of Diane and Stephen who were married last October and held their rustic styled reception at the Leighinmohr House Hotel. They put a lot of love and effort into making their day super personal which was perfectly captured by Lauren of LIT Photography. Wishing you all a fantastic week ahead, xx.
Couple: Diane + Stephen Saulters
“Stephen was the year above me in the same school, Cambridge House. I was in the same year as his little brother, but didn’t know they were brothers! I knew of Stephen around school but he didn’t remember me. We met one night in Kelly’s, Portrush. I was on a night out with Uni friends and he had taken his friend out to cheer him up after a break up. Ironically it was him that found a women that night!”
“We had planned to take a walk with friends on Easter Monday 2016. Strangely they cancelled (now I know why lol) so Stephen took me to Benone beach. I had no idea it was coming so I complained the whole walk about how cold and blustery it was, but he wanted to keep going to the quiet part of the beach where all of a sudden he got on one knee! I was totally surprised and didn’t even know he had been looking at rings, so he did a good job picking by himself.”
“Our top priority was creating a personal day that was local enough for all our guests to be able to make, so that’s why we chose a local venue. Also, as a musician I wanted music to play a big part of our day, so we had friends and musicians I teach and play along with doing our church music and reception music, which made it super personal.”
Our Budget & Suppliers
“We didn’t really sit down and say this is the exact amount we want to spend. As we have our own house we understood how far money can go so we didn’t want to spend silly money on things we could do ourselves. Of course there were things that we just had to spend on, like the band, photographer, videographer, flowers, venue, suits etc. But apart from that we tried to do most other things ourselves.
After we had our engagement shoot with LIT Photographer we LOVED the photos Lauren was able to take, as both of us were quite nervous about being posed for photographs all day. She had a great natural, unobtrusive style which just suited our relaxed day perfectly.
I knew that I wanted the boys from the Scottish Ceilidh Band I am in ‘Risin’ Stour’ and a couple of the Fiddle teachers I teach with to supply the service music, so as to make it super special and personal to us. They had never played together and only had one practise at the rehearsal but they are so talented that the music sounded AMAZING on the day! Also I got Kevin Jackson & Richard Marshall, a country singer band I play with to sing in the bar at the reception.”
“We are definitely a laid back couple and didn’t want to get wrapped up in the expense of thinking you had to spend a fortune on everything. We wanted a relaxed, enjoyable day which took a lot of pressure off us to have everything run perfectly. We wanted a rustic style wedding using any materials we could get our hands on and decorate ourselves.”
“Where we could make use of our own creative skills and family’s we did: my mum and sister in law made and decorated our cake, and my mum made homemade fudge which we put into little jars (my nephews baby food jars!), I put labels on and used as the centre pieces. I got an old wooden pallet from my parents farm and varnished it to make the table plan (probably my proudest DIY), I also reused an old wooden board from our shed and turned into our guest board for people to sign, which we now have displayed.”
“I went for a fitted dress with light lace from Wedded Bliss, Portglenone. It was super comfy and had a cut out back that I loved! I wore a veil with lace trim to match. I splashed out on a pair of Carvela jewelled court heels, they were super comfy. I always knew I wanted the bridesmaids to be burgundy/wine colour as I loved it for an Autumn wedding. Their dresses were a chiffon material with a little lace detail on the shoulders by Hayley Paige.”
“Don’t stress about the little details! I probably got carried away with the DIY aspect which then put a little bit of pressure on me to get it all finished in the last week (maybe don’t procrastinate as much as I did and leave it to the last minute to finish lol). I would also advise not to get caught up in the whole ‘the more expensive the better’ mentality. It is very easy to get wrapped up in that as you want everything to be perfect but what I loved and what our guests loved about our wedding was that everything had a personal homemade touch that fitted perfectly with our rustic style. Also try to think about what kind of day you want and imagine it to be, if you tailor it too much towards what you think the guests will want it becomes less personal.”
Happy Friday lovely ones! This week has whizzed by so fast which has been good for me as I actually have an action-packed weekend ahead. I’m off to see The Bodyguard in the GOH and then to my local theatre to see my friend take on a leading role in Chicago.
This Sunday, February 10th, the multi-award winning Lough Erne Resort in County Fermanagh are hosting a unique ‘Seasoned with Love Wedding Open Day.’ The event is to celebrate their recent win at the Wedding Dates awards where they were crowned the prestigious ‘Top Rated Five-Star Wedding Venue in the UK.’
The exciting wedding open day this Sunday is like no other and has been designed to give couples the opportunity to discover, taste and experience each season to decide exactly which season they wish their special day to fall within.
The award winning team will be on hand to guide couples through the Resort and introduce them to the best of local wedding suppliers who will have VIP promotions available to only those couples hosting their wedding at Lough Erne Resort. Plus, the resort will also have an exclusive offer available if you book and confirm your wedding on the day. The event runs from 1pm to 5pm this Sunday.
Lough Erne Resort Menu Tasting Experience
One of the most exciting parts of planning your reception is choosing the menu. A few weeks ago I discovered what happens at a menu tasting experience at Lough Erne Resort, with Joanne Walsh filling me in on all the exciting details that you should know about.
What will couples try at the tasting?
“On the day of the tasting, they will meet their Banqueting Manager who looks after them on their wedding day and chef will come out to say hello and discuss the food and their thoughts. We offer the full wedding menu and each person selects one dish from all courses – so starter, soup, main, dessert and tea & coffee – they always leave us more than satisfied! We let the couple dine in peace, so they can discuss the dishes openly, and then they meet their co-ordinator afterwards to begin to go through final details and feedback.”
Where do couples dine?
“We offer such a great experience for the menu tasting and it really gets the couples excited for what lies ahead as it is often when it all starts to feel real! They dine exclusively in the Catalina Restaurant in private – usually on a Saturday afternoon. We offer two sitting times – 1.00pm or 3.30pm. We print personalised menus for the couple as a keepsake for their memory box, just like the big day.”
Can couples bring their parents?
“Yes, as we can extend the invitation for a tasting for up to 6 people – couples quite often use the tasting as a great way of bringing both sets of parents together and helps them to be included in the planning of their special day.”
Most popular dish?
“The confit of duck starter is very popular – and our signature dish is the Sirloin steak served for main course.
We can offer bespoke dishes, and we would do this quite often – particularly because of dietary requirements – we have devised quite a few Vegan dishes recently!”
Any other information couples should know?
“Tastings are offered four months before the wedding, and they are complimentary and included in the package for the couple. Extra guests are charged for. It is best not to drive to the resort on the day of your tasting!! Included in the menu tasting our couples would also taste all six of our banqueting wines – we offer three pairings – French, Italian and Chilean – the couple can choose their favourite for the big day.”
I am so in love with today’s stunning wedding dress and frock coat combo! Aisling wore it so well to her October wedding to finance, Andrew. With a day that revolved around making sure their guests had the best time, the couple entrusted much of this to their venue, Lough Eske Castle, Donegal. I’m delighted to be sharing their day with beautiful photography by Denise Leacock.
Couple: Aisling + Andrew McNamee
“We met on a night out through mutual friends in September 2012 in Letterkenny, the Pulse to be exact.”
“Happened on my birthday at home in our little Bungalow. Perfect and one of the happiest days.”
“Top priority was for everyone to enjoy their day and all to run smoothly and I can honestly say the hotel made that all happen. The band were amazing, food was amazing and even to this day people still remember just having a laugh and enjoying the day.”
Our Budget & Suppliers
“We did have a budget and I knew I wasn’t going to go mad which we didn’t!
Simply Devine weddings did our centre pieces and and decorated the room. It was just perfect, I was shocked when I walked in! They went above and beyond. Kate’s Flowers could not have got what I wanted any closer, they were stunning and Poplife the band were amazing.”
“I wanted a rustic neutral kind of style to our day with autumn colours to tie in with the bridesmaids dresses. We chose floral, twine and candles for the venue and wanted a relaxed day with no hassle. I knew what I wanted and what I didn’t. Pinterest was my best friend!! Honestly, the venue took care of so much on the day. The team had it prepared and set out to perfection.
I chose burgundy simple dresses to complement style of my wedding dress. The girls found them comfy and easy to wear. The boys wore navy slim fit check suits with burgundy shoes and belt. I think I picked the suits and brought the boys in to try them on. Andy had a say but he’s very easy going and was happy with them all.”
“I wore my mum’s blue sapphire earrings on my wedding day which was my something borrowed and blue. I didn’t wear much jewellery, the dress and earrings said enough. We had thistle in Andrew’s buttonhole to remember Scotland where I was born and my mum is from.”
Anna Georgina bought from Alice May Bridal Boutique.
“Finding the dress wasn’t too difficult in all honestly. I knew what I wanted and what I didn’t want. I tried on few different styles to confirm this. My dress was simple but stood out in the right way. And so comfortable…this should be top of the list. I danced all night in my dress, it was so comfy!”
“Don’t stress out… and at the end of the day it is yours and the grooms day. No one else’s… have it your way and enjoy every minute.”