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Promise Picks: Spring Brights

January 26, 2016
Spring wedding decor, brights

When you think of a typical Spring wedding, romantic thoughts of pastel colours, ditsy prints and pretty florals will be at the forefront of your mind. Sometimes though, typical isn’t for everyone. We’ve found some of the best quirky rainbow themed décor, certain to keep all of you alternative brides smiling! Feel free to grab the Ray-Bans for this one though ladies, it’s a bright one!

Also, as a side note, you might have noticed we shared The Lous blog post last week which included this mega-amazing woodland wedding, featured above. If you’ve half an hour to gaze and smile, check it out, here!

Spring wedding decor, brights

{image credits: image: Lisa Devlin // image: Binky Nixon via You and Your Wedding // image: Zurin via Cherry on a Cake // image: Isabelle Selby via Ruffled Blog // image: The Lous // image: Derek Novak // image: Lara Hotz via Hello May // image: Hannah Millard // image: The Lous //

Planning Real Couples

Blogging Bride 2016: Introducing Lorraine & Aaron

January 19, 2016
Blogging Bride 2016

Good morning, did we all survive Blue Monday?! It wasn’t really that bad, although I am glad the end of January is now within sight! Today we’re saying hello to one of our 2016 Blogging Brides – yes, you may have noticed I didn’t shout out for any this year, Lorraine contacted me last year and I couldn’t say no 😉 – Lorraine is getting married this September in what I know will be a gorgeous day and she’s so excited to be a wifey! 

Hi, I’m Lorraine and I’ll be marrying Aaron in September on Lusty Beg. Aaron and I first met at university when we studied as postgraduates in 2009.

We were all asked to get into groups in one of our first classes and I was with a girl I had met earlier in the day, Rebecca. We spotted a guy who looked clever sitting across the room, and beckoned him over to join us – and that’s how Aaron and I met! We spent the next year studying and going out but there was never any chemistry between us.

It was only after some Facebook commenting in 2013 that I suggested going for coffee – just as two old friends, catching up. After we went home and carried on chatting, we decided to meet up a few days later but I still didn’t think it was a date! After a few drinks and a trip to the cinema (and a wee kiss) we officially started dating. I lived by myself and Aaron unofficially moved in straight away, before making the official move a few months later. We now live in Belfast with my two cats and a dog who we rescued from Assisi a few years ago.

Blogging Bride 2016

Getting engaged…

We both knew straight away that we were going to get married. I told my mum she needed to buy a hat after we had been together for two months! Despite this, it was almost two years until he (finally) proposed with a gorgeous ring. I have my granny’s engagement ring, and he knew I loved it so it’s the same three stone setting. It all happened completely out of the blue a few days before my 28th birthday. I was having a bit of a strop about getting old and Aaron tried to cheer me up, offering breakfast in bed or brunch. I refused the lot, so he went and got the ring and proposed while I was still in bed!

Blogging Bride 2016

Let the planning commence…

We started planning soon after and knew we wanted to be married before we turned 30, early in 2017. Aaron plays American Football, so we chose autumn 2016, which is his off-season in the hope that he wouldn’t have any football injuries! I plan lots of events for work, and knew I didn’t want a traditional hotel wedding, so we started looking at alternative venues. Aaron has a big family, so our venue had a few must haves; accommodation to stay overnight, a late bar license, a civil ceremony license, enough room for everyone to attend and most importantly, lots of character.

We looked a few country houses and I had a spreadsheet of cost and capacity of around 40 venues in Ireland! Finally, we decided to visit Lusty Beg Island for some lunch and I can honestly say that we were blown away. From the minute we stepped onto the ferry we knew we’d found the perfect place. It met all the criteria we wanted, the staff were so helpful and even on a rainy day, the scenery was beautiful. It also helped that it’s not too far from where our families live.

We both want the same thing for our wedding, to have the best day, surrounded by friends, family and love so it wasn’t long before I started thinking about the other important elements, but that’s a post for another day!

Lorraine x

Planning Suppliers

Wedding Cake Trends for 2016

January 13, 2016
Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design

It’s icy cold, and we’ve sure had enough of all these storms so today we’re going for some cake love to cheer us up! A few weeks before Christmas I caught up with Emma, cake baker and designer extraordinaire of Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design in Omagh for a mooch into what we can look forward to for wedding cakes this year. Let me tell you, it’s going to be exciting and tasty! Over to you Emma…

Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design

Naked Cakes

The naked cake has been around for a couple of years and with good reason 2016 will see more of them. Semi-naked cakes dressed with fruit or fresh flowers will also be a hugely popular choice, particularly for summer weddings.

Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design


Lots of brides are choosing to reflect the detailing on their wedding gowns by using texture throughout their cake designs. From ruffles and pleats, to rosettes and frills, texture is a gorgeously feminine trend that I adore making. With multiple tiered cakes texture works really when different finishes are used to each tier, so maybe a ruffled tier placed below a plainly iced tier and finishing with a metallic tier on the top.

Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design


Who doesn’t love metallics at weddings?! All kinds of shades are possible with a metallic finish, from tones of gold to champagne as well as silvers and metallic shines to other shades such as vibrant greens and rich amethyst which give a luxurious lustre and feel.

Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design

Cake & Dessert Tables

This year I predict we will see more and more tables laden with delicious cakes, cupcakes, cake balls and macaroons, why not, they are utterly stunning to look at!

Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design


Florals and lace detail will remain very popular, though with a more elegant modern twist, moving away a little from the full on vintage look.

Wedding cake trends 2016, Truly Scrumptious Cakes By Design

His & Hers

All in one bride and grooms cakes which could include an element for the groom, with either a hidden themed side or just a wee node to the grooms hobbies. These cakes are always fun to make.

In terms of colours I am seeing lots of soft gold, blush pinks and peachy tones for spring and summer 2016 weddings.

You can view more of Emma’s amazing work on her brand new website, or call 07904 480 920.


Want The Best Bridal Party? Here’s How!

January 12, 2016
Bridal Party, Image Gather and Tides

They should be your sisters from another mister, or in our modern twitter era, your #squad – have you thought about who to include in your bridal party? For some brides, the decision is simple and there is only one set of right hand women that they would even consider. Unfortunately this isn’t the case for everyone and choosing a bridal party can turn into a scene from Bride Wars. Have a look at our top tips for choosing the perfect bridal party to make sure nobody’s nose is put out of joint.

Take your time – While it might seem that the minute you get engaged you need to choose who should be in your bridal party, this is not the case. Take as long as you need to deliberate over the perfect choice. Remember, once you have asked someone to be a part of your day, you can’t take it back (well, not without a serious amount of drama) so make sure you are happy and 100% sure of your decision before popping the question.

Choose carefully – The build up to a wedding can be a stressful time for any bride, so it is important that the people you have chosen to be in your bridal party will be good at calming your nerves, or being a shoulder to cry on if it all gets too much. Diva demands from a bratty bridesmaid will only add unwanted extra stress.

Other roles – Obviously not everyone can be in the main bridal party, but if you have close friends or family members that you would like to be a part of your day, consider asking them to carry out other roles within the wedding. Think of how you could incorporate them into the day by exploiting their best talents. Asking a friend to welcome your guests or perform a reading during the ceremony will allow them to feel involved in your wedding day, keeping everyone happy.

Budget – When choosing your wedding party, don’t forget to take into consideration your overall budget. It’s easy to get carried away in the excitement of asking your BFFs to be a part of your wedding, but remember that the more people you include, the more expensive it will be. Dresses, shoes, flowers, hair, makeup, spray-tans, nails and jewellery will all add up, so it’s important to cater your bridal party to your budget and not go overboard.

Bridal Party, Image Gather and Tides

Don’t ask someone just because they asked you – Your bridal party should be made up of people that you want right by your side every step of the way, so if your long lost cousin from Australia asked you to be her bridesmaid, don’t feel that you have to return the favour. You don’t want to look back in ten years and regret your decision; just because you felt you had to.

Tradition – Long gone are the days of sticking to tradition when it comes to choosing a bridal party. If your best friend is a boy, or vice versa, your groom’s best friend is a girl, why should you sacrifice having them in your wedding party just because it’s not typically traditional? A bridesman, or a groomswoman is so 2016.

Bridal Party Size – Keep in mind the overall size of the bridal party when choosing who to ask – remember that the groom will also be asking his nearest and dearest to be a part of the day as well. The average numbers on each side is usually between three and four people – but if you’re considering having a bigger bridal party, keep in mind trying to organise shopping trips, dress and suit fittings and hen and stag parties. Organising a large number of people can be stressful, especially in the run up to a wedding.

Personality – When planning your wedding you need people around who know you upside down and inside out. Members of your wedding party will have responsibilities in the run up to and on the day of your wedding so consider choosing someone who will be reliable enough to take care of the wedding bands, and the signing of the register but also someone who knows how to throw the best kind of hen or stag party!


{Images by Gather and Tides, from Hannah and Ryan’s beautiful day}


11 Things You Should Know Now You’re The Bride To Be!

January 5, 2016
Wedding planning advice for brides

Were you the lucky recipient of a diamond ring over the festivities? If that was you and you’re now on the road to planning the biggest day of your life, here are 11 pieces of secret advice that you need to know.

1. Wearing a ring on your finger will be weird, for a while. True fact, just you wait to see how opening the car door will become a strange thing to do, how you’ll always touch the band at the back with your thumb for reassurance and how you’ll never want to take it off! Take a tip from us, do take it off, when you’re doing certain things like cleaning, you don’t want it loosing it’s sparkle! Also remember to add it onto the valuables of your house insurance, just in case.

2. You and your groom will probably disagree. Let’s face it there’s not a great deal of gents out there who have the faintest idea of how they want their wedding to look and feel, but as small as his preconceptions and ideas are when you really get down to the nitty gritty, he will have his opinion! Whether or not you agree with them will be the real test, working things out and compromising will be needed on both parts.

3. Never forget you and your groom are number one in the planning decisions, do your day, your way. It can be hard to ignore other peoples advice and ideas, especially if they are contributing financially to the wedding, but stand strong and go with what you believe in. You’ll make a much nicer bride that way!

4. You will get days when planning your wedding might become overwhelming. It’s totally natural to feel up tight and precious over your big day, you just need to learn to keep a level head and continue on. If things start to get you down do positive things to work out any problems, write to-do lists (I am a big believer in lists!), call your mate for a chat or have a walk, just clear your head and come back to anything that feels like a problem later.

5. On the other hand you might become super organised – or not!

6. Don’t forget that outside of your bubble life is still continuing on for everyone else, don’t bury your head so deep and forget the world! I’d encourage you to plan ‘wedding free’ nights and even weekends so that you can really enjoy your engagement with your fiancé and family.

7. Your day might be completely different to what your first thought – and that’s totally okay. Sure, you might have had visions of planning your five year old selfs dream wedding, but your taste’s change as you get older, it’s okay to leave the five year old dreams at the door and go for a 30-something chic vision instead!

8. You will have doubts. Did I choose the right dress, are my colours right for all the bridesmaids, will the guests enjoy themselves… you will always question yourself. Don’t go dwelling on all these random thoughts they’re simply nerves and nerves are totally natural! As long as you end up with a husband on your wedding day that’s what matters most.

9. Choose the best people to be your helpers. We’re talking your mums, best friends and family who will wholeheartedly give their honest opinion, won’t trash you in your favourite wedding dress and won’t make you feel rubbish about your decisions. If you’ve an older, uglier, jealous nasty sister leave her at home!

10. Don’t try to be someone else on your wedding day, be the best you, ever. The prettiest brides are those who feel comfortable in their own skin and wear it with pride. No unrecognisable transformations please.

11. Finally, you will feel a little miserable after the day is done. Well, do you know what, you shouldn’t you’ve got the best prize, a new husband and a brand new chapter of life to live! Yes, it’s fine to feel a little flat after the most magical day but think about the first time you see your wedding photos, the first viewing of your wedding film (we advise tissues, lots of tissues), your first anniversary – all these special occasions will make any flatness disappear. We would suggest holding your honeymoon off for a few months after the day, this gives you something really special to look towards.

Now, off you go and be the best bride you possibly can be!


{Featured image: Sarah and Fergal’s Castle Leslie Estate wedding by The Lous}


Over And Out! Merry Christmas One & All

December 21, 2015

Merry Christmas from The Promise (Image by Brown Paper Packages)

Here we are, lovely readers, with only four sleeps until the big day! 

This year has been incredibly exciting and busy here at The Promise HQ – we shared so many glorious wedding stories, advice, fashion and inspiration, we chatted over Facebook and Instagram about everything and anything, I was a bride for once (!) and you supported this little corner of the Internet like never before – for it all and more a huge Thank You from me! 

There will be a few treat-filled posts over the holidays, but all there’s really left for me to do is wish you a very Merry Christmas, and here’s to an even bigger and better 2016 for us all. We hope your holidays are filled with family and love, and that treasured memories will be made. 

From Lynne and I, my husband and kids, seasons greetings and goodwill to you all,

Em xx


(Image: Brown Paper Packages)

Planning Suppliers

Local Loves: Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

December 16, 2015
Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

Good morning you lovely lot! Today we’re sharing a gem of a wedding venue right on the edge of the Mourne mountains. The Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall in Killyleagh have recently celebrated a decade in business and have rebranded their unique event space, Dufferin Hall.

Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

Dufferin Hall’s enchanting event space is perfect for all celebrations holding up to 100 people for dinner and 160 for dancing. The stunning reception hall and entry have been recently refurbished, maintaining the character and charm with stone steps, pearly grey walls, iron bannisters, recessed fairy lights, carriage lamps, and stained glass door panels. The Hall is part of the original Inn and stables, built in 1803, and offers a perfect backdrop for DIY brides and quirky wedding parties, while the attached seven room guesthouse includes uniquely decorated and well-appointed bedrooms perfect for a night’s stay following a late-night party.

Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

Well-known locally for its iconic yellow façade and location in proximity to Killyleagh Castle, the seven bedroom Dufferin Coaching Inn has acted as an iconic building in the community for over 200 years, serving first as an Ulster Bank and later being converted into a stunning guest house and reception space.

Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

Perfect for any occasion, from small weddings with a big impact to welcoming parties following weddings abroad and elopements, the Dufferin Coaching Inn & Hall’s £450 hire fee includes event space with access for the week leading up to your event, rustic tables and chairs, crockery, cutlery, glasses a fully-stocked and staffed licensed bar as well as a complimentary one-night stay for the bride and groom on their wedding night. Newlyweds can also hire the venue for £250 as a perfect private location for hosting evening parties.

Dufferin Coaching Inn and Hall

For more information on this unique venue visit or tel: 028 4482 1134.