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ni photographer

Real Couples

Diane + Stephen

February 18, 2019
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

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. 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

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!” 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

The Proposal 

“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.” 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

Wedding date: Friday 19th October 2018 

Ceremony: Clough Presbyterian Church

Reception: Leighinmohr House Hotel, Ballymena 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

Our Planning

“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.”

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

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.” 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

Our Style

“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.”

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

Personal Touches

“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.”

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

My Dress

“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.” 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

Our Advice

“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.” 

LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI
LIT Photography, Leighinmohr House Hotel | The Promise NI

Wedding Suppliers

Venue: Leighinmohr House Hotel, Ballymena. 

Dress: Ida Torez, Wedded Bliss, Portglenone. 

Bridesmaids dress: Hayley Paige, Castle Couture, Galgorm. 

Headpiece: Sophiabeau, Etsy. 

Grooms wear: Dapper Dudes Groomswear, Wedding Centre, Randalstown. 

Photographer: Lauren McGee, LIT Photography, Portrush. 

Cake: My very talented Mum & Sister-in-law. 

Flowers: Cherry Blossom Flowers, Randalstown. 

Bridal cars: C4 Wedding Cars, Magherafelt. 

Videographer: Paul @ Capture Wedding Video

Evening band: Juice

Hair: Electric Chair, Ballymena. 

Makeup: Catherine Courtney Makeup, Ballymena. 

Chalkboards: Love Weddings Studio, Belfast. 

Real Couples

Aisling + Andrew

February 4, 2019
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

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.

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Couple: Aisling + Andrew McNamee 

“We met on a night out through mutual friends in September 2012 in Letterkenny, the Pulse to be exact.”

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

The Proposal

“Happened on my birthday at home in our little Bungalow. Perfect and one of the happiest days.

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Wedding date: Friday 14th October 2017 

Ceremony: Sessiaghoneill Church, Ballybofey

Reception: Lough Eske Castle, Donegal 

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Our Planning

“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.” 

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

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.” 

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Our Style 

“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.”

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Personal Touches

“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.” 

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

My Dress

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!” 

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Our Advice

“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.”

Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI
Aisling + Andrew, Lough Eske, Denise Leacock Photography | The Promise NI

Wedding Suppliers

Venue: Lough Eske Castle, Donegal

Wedding dress: Anna Georgina from Alice May Bridal, Dublin

Bridesmaids dress: Pearls and Lace, Donegal

Hair: Hair by Franky, Lifford

Makeup: Bride: Niamh Grain Makeup Artist & Bridesmaids: SAK Designs, Glenane 

Groomswear: Mc Elhinneys, Ballybofey 

Cake: Made by a neighbour and friend

Flowers: Kate’s Flowers, Ballybofey

Bridal cars: Peter Mc Lean, Letterkenny

Entertainment: Poplife Band and DJ

Photographer: Denise Leacock Photography, Magherafelt 

Honeymoon: Finland – Hotel Iso Syote, the best holiday ever! The hotel was up a mountain in the middle of nowhere, we enjoyed excursions in -16 degree weather.

Planning Suppliers

Behind the Lens: Sarah Bryden Photography

February 1, 2017
Sarah Bryden Photography, Behind The Lens | The Promise NI

Good morning and welcome to February! I read yesterday that January is only a practice run for the year, and I think I’m going to embrace that and start this month with a fresh outlook and some new dreams.

Today we’re welcoming back a much loved feature that we haven’t had on the blog for over a year – Behind the Lens – which today comes from Omagh based wedding photographer, Sarah Bryden.

How did you become a wedding photographer, Sarah? 

I had always wanted to be a journalist from a young age. I loved to write and tell stories so I did my qualifications for that and then used it to move into PR. It was in my job with Echo Echo Dance Theatre Company that I found my love for the camera. I began photographing the dancers in rehearsals and wanted to do more and more. So now, I feel like my background in journalism, the arts and dance has all made me the photographer that I am today. I’m still a storyteller except now it is with a camera instead of a pen!

Sarah Bryden Photography, Behind The Lens | The Promise NI

What are your favourite things about capturing special wedding memories through a lens? 

For me it’s the people that I meet. I love getting to know my couples and I really feel like part of the family by the end of the day! After all, it’s a happy occasion so it’s important that everyone enjoys it! And that really comes across in the photographs.

Tell us about your wedding day…

We had snow! I’m a November bride and expected rain but woke up to a blanket of snow. Thankfully it was the very first day of the horrendous snow of 2010 so all my guests still managed to come but it did mean we didn’t get on our honeymoon. I wore a Sassi Holford dress of my dreams and we got married in my husbands little country church.

Thinking back to your own wedding, would you do anything differently or approach planning in another way? 

I think we nailed it. We had the best day, full of laughter and really just a good party! We kept it simple and focused on making sure everyone had a good day, and that’s what I tell my couples. Don’t get hung up on the little details, they don’t really matter. Just enjoy it all!

Sarah Bryden Photography, Behind The Lens | The Promise NI

What do you think are the key ingredients for a great wedding day? 

Good food, good music, good people! And just do it your way, have a day that represents you both.

Have you any secrets you share with wedding couples that you’d like to share with us? 

It’s not really a secret but I tell every couple the same thing. If you get to your ceremony and you’re both there and you come out married then it has been a perfect day! It doesn’t matter if your flowers aren’t right or the cake falls over (yes this has happened!), the most important thing is each other and the commitment you are making.

Sarah Bryden Photography, Behind The Lens | The Promise NI

Do you think there is any secret formula to a successful marriage?

Communication. You have to talk to each other and that’s never more important than when times get tough. Never be afraid to have the difficult conversations because they will keep you connected and close.

What wedding trends are you loving at the minute?

I’m loving the focus on back detail in bridal dresses and seeing more sleeves. I also love the understated bridal look that is becoming more popular. For me, its fantastic that couples are putting a lot more emphasis on their photographs. They’re really thinking about locations and details which makes my job more fun. I’m also so impressed with the use of technology, recently a wedding had their own snapchat filter!

Sarah-Bryden-Photography-Behind-the-Lens-1

Is there anything you haven’t done that you would like to? 

There are lots of venues that I haven’t shot in and would like to. I’d love to shoot in Orange Tree House or Virginia Park Lodge for example. Other than that, I would love to shoot an alternative outdoors wedding, like in a forest or somewhere. Epic locations are always beautiful regardless of weather!

What’s in the pipeline for Sarah Bryden Photography?

I’m working on a new website – not sure if that is considered exciting? But I will be doing more helpful blogs for my couples and their wedding planning. I’m also doing a 52 week personal photography project this year. I think it’s important to always be loving your photography, working on your skills and creativity outside of the business and paid work. It always makes us better photographers for our couples in the end and that’s so important to me. Happy clients equals happy me!

A huge thanks to Sarah for taking the time to share her world with us. To see more of her work visit www.sarahbrydenphotography.com, and follow her Instagram photography project at @sarahbrydenphotography.