You know one of those weeks where anything that can go wrong, does go wrong? Well, that was last week and it just so happened to be one of the busiest weeks in my year! After getting glammed up for the annual Getting Married in Northern Ireland Reader Awards (which was fabulous, but please someone remind me to wear sensible footwear next year!), I’m pretty pleased to reach today and get stuck into lots of work. First up, Hannah and Ryan’s beautiful day, which is full of character at Lissanoure Castle.
I fall a little bit in love with every wedding that drops into my inbox, that’s a fact. But today’s wedding really makes me smile; it’s from Gather & Tides, so there’s the first reason to love it. But more than that, Hannah and Ryan are young and totally in love, they are the cutest couple and their wedding was such a style-fest, without it seems, any stressing! Hannah was given a deadline to choose her wedding gown, that’s just how laid back she was about the whole process! It’s clear to see, their wedding this past July was polished, full of character and totally brimming with love – the precious meaning of marriage wasn’t lost on this pair. Wishing you a lifetime of happiness, Hannah and Ryan, thanks for sharing your day.
Hannah and Ryan met in the halls of Stranmillis through mutual friends and got together during Hannah’s final year. After a move back to her family home on the lovely North Coast, the couple started the 75 mile commute every weekend to see each other and it soon became clear it was heading in the right direction.
Each year for her birthday Ryan surprises Hannah with a mystery day trip and dinner and on her 24th birthday instead of a new location the couple ended up on Murlough bay, the spot they shared their first date.
“Getting engaged wasn’t even nearly on the cards so I got a huge shock when Ryan popped the question!” said Hannah.
“I genuinely didn’t have any big dreams about my wedding assuming that it was still a long way off! I’d no idea what I wanted but when we were suddenly engaged, we knew we didn’t want to wait too long. My mum was the proactive influence, she made the phone calls and within a couple of days the venue and caterer were provisionally booked. One of Ryan’s big priorities was having a good photographer. We both loved Tim and Gillian Higgins’ work and we were so pleased they could do our wedding,” added Hannah.
After a length search, Primary school teacher Hannah finally decided Eden by Jenny Packham was the gown for her, although she did spend the following six months worrying if she’d made the right choice! Thankfully when it arrived in store at Castle Couture in Galgorm she knew it was the one and has loved it ever since.
Her bridesmaids wore dusky pink dresses from the high street that they chose themselves, whilst Ryan wore a charcoal grey G Connolly suit from Andrew Watson in Belfast.
“We had so much fun, the whole day went so smoothly and we loved being surrounded by all our favourite people. Although if everything went right it would have been boring! All went so smoothly, until the moment we were all ready to leave. The cars were lined up, ticking over, waiting to take everyone to church, when one Mini conked out and refused to start. Dad looked so stressed, but I didn’t care at all. We quickly put plan B in place and everyone made it to church, almost on time! I’ll never forget having to call my big cousin on route to the church – he saved the day, fixed the Mini and brought it to church!” said Hannah.
“My highlight was walking up the aisle and seeing so many people, especially people who had travelled to be there; I’ll never forget it. We both loved the speeches a lot, they were just so good. I absolutely LOVED my sister’s speech, mostly because I didn’t see it coming and everyone was roaring with laughter,” added Hannah.
Hannah’s advice for other engaged couples…
Don’t get sucked in and don’t let traditions take over. Get your friends involved as much as possible. Have as many bridesmaids as you want. Choose suppliers that you know you’ll have fun with. Make your wedding day fun and don’t let yourself get too emotional – it’s the happiest day ever!
Because I just can’t get enough of this lovely couple, here’s their wedding film from Ross at Soul & Rise.
Ceremony: Toberkeigh Presbyterian Church.
Reception: Lissanoure Castle, Ballymena.
Photographer: Gather and Tides, Portstewart.
Wedding dress: Castle Couture, Galgorm.
Bridesmaids dresses: Coast, Ted Baker, House of Fraser and Blush.
Grooms wear: Andrew Watson, Belfast.
Cake: Big Cakes Wee Buns.
Flowers: The Stables Flower Company, Coleraine.
Film: Soul and Rise.
Entertainment: Al Bennett Band.