“The theme was Great Gatsby meets old Hollywood meets modern day New Year’s Eve glamour.”
Your Names: Pamela & Andrew Hennessy
Length of engagement: 2 years
Wedding Date: 2019-12-31
Wedding location: Vienna Woods Hotel Cork
How did you meet and get engaged?
We met through a mutual friend in Sydney in an Irish pub in Bondi called the Cock n Bull. We were friends for about 5 years before we decide to take the plunge and go on a first date and it didn’t work out too bad. We live just down the road from a beautiful beach area in Sydney called Watson Bay, which has a view of the whole skyline of Sydney & the Harbour Bridge. My family were due to arrive for their first visit to Australia the next day. Unbeknownst to me Andrew had contacted my parents to see if he could ask me to marry him. The night before they arrived in Andrew ask me to go for dinner and a walk at Watson’s Bay. I was still totally clueless when we got out and walked along the bay near secluded area where the boats are moored up, with a perfect view of the city. He took out the ring and tried to ask me to marry him, but full of nerves I started shouting yes yes yes before he even got a chance to ask me properly haha! But he finally got to ask when I calmed down and said yes. We then celebrated on an outdoor table with paella and champagne. Needless to say it was the best time of my life, especially with most of my family there to share it with us.
Describe your wedding:
As our wedding was a winter wedding we wanted to have warm and rich colours. I am also an absolute vintage enthusiast and love that old glamours feel but also love mixing it with a modern vibe. Both and Andrew I like to wear things a little different to the norm, so that kind of set the tone for the day. The theme was Great Gatsby meets old Hollywood meets modern day New Year’s Eve glamour.
Our colour palette was champagne, blush, burgundy and black. We kept the bridal party in classic black tie, minimal. The flowers girls then wore something of each colour tying us together. I wore a champagne colour dress with blush beading and Andrew wore a tuxedo with a velvet burgundy jacket.
For the flowers I absolutely love that wild look, so lots of greenery mixed with burgundy and blush and lots of pampas grass (which is my favourite). I also had feathers from my dress put into Andrew’s buttonhole as a secret message to him. Catherine from West Cork Flowers did a wonderful job.
The church and hotel were decorated with copper lanterns and garlands and pampas grass. We wanted to give that warm winter wedding splashed with that New Year’s Eve glitz and glamour.
Tell us about your bridal look:
Again for this I knew I wanted that old Hollywood glamorous vibe. Before I even started I knew I was going to wear a red lip.
The first thing I found was my dress. I knew I wanted something totally different and something with feathers. I looked on Pinterest for a feather wedding dress and absolutely fell in love with the Enzoani Leonie. The beading, the feathers, the 1920’s straight down, floor-length style. I was blown away when I saw it hanging in the dressing room in Diamond Bridal. When I tried it on I knew it was the one, especially when Grace paired it with the Nieve Coutour blush crystal veil, I was absolutely in love.
Next I decide on the hair, I wanted the Hollywood wave but someone told me that it would be too high so I decided against it. I then went to visit the unbelievably talented Audrey from Upstyle Junkie with a completely different style, very very vintage and as beautiful as it looked it just did not suit me. However in all of her talent, I explained to Audrey want I really wanted and she quickly changed the hair to show me what it could look like and I knew that was what I was after. And of course, on the day, it was even better than I had envisioned.
For makeup, I had attended a family wedding a couple of years before and my in-law Emma was the most stunning bride, she had that classic Hollywood look also. I contacted her and she recommended Jeanette Cronin in Cork. Oh my goodness what an absolute magician. I went to her with my deep red lip idea, showed her the dress and she just came up with the rest of the look. I was absolutely blown away, I love how glamorous it looked without being too dramatic, she made me feel so confident.
But that’s the thing I was lucky enough to get the absolutely best of the best when it came to the suppliers so I had complete trust in them.
What did your bridesmaids wear?
I had Brian, my best friend as my Man of Honour. He wore a tuxedo with a winged collar concealed button shirt, black velvet dickie bow and black patent shoes. The bridesmaids, Ali, Aoife, Sinead and Dee wore a black spaghetti strap fitted dress with a fishtail, black stone drop earrings, an off white fur stole, and simple black strap high heel.
What was your ceremony like?
We got married the beautiful Killeagh Church in Co.Cork. I have this childhood memory of travelling with my grandmother in the car when I was very small from Waterford to Cork and always remember seeing that church from the window. Every time I pass it, it reminds me of her. I thought that on the day it would be my little piece of her with me, all the way from Waterford to Cork.
When picking the readings, prayer and gospel for the ceremony we wanted ones that spoke about love and happiness and marriage and ones that reflect us as a couple and what’s important to us. We wanted the whole ceremony to be centred around love. On top of this we are HUGE music fans. Andrew and I attend concerts and gigs all the time, so music was always going to be the centre of our wedding. Even our tables at the venue were named after bands we had seen or music that was important to us. Fr. Hazelwood who married us was wonderful enough to let us use non-traditional music at parts of the ceremony which really gave a sense of us as a couple. And Something Blue Acoustics did such a wonderful job of bring our choices of the Cranberries, Bruce Springsteen and David Bowie to life.
Tell us about your wedding venue:
What can I say about the Vienna Woods in Cork, it is just absolutely out of this world. I searched and searched for a country house in Cork that had amazing recommendations and could hold the large wedding we were going to have. I found the Vienna Woods Hotel and my parents and sister after their trip
to Sydney went to visit it for me. I knew they knew exactly what I was after, so on their recommendation I booked the hotel. We then went to see it ourselves the following August and knew it was the one for us, the little rooms for the reception, the bar, chandeliers, the grand piano, it just blew us away.
The hotel itself is a family-run country house hotel. It has this old-world feel about it. The decor is absolutely stunning and their Christmas decorations are so beautiful. They have a huge beautiful ballroom with chandeliers hanging from the ceilings, it just suited us perfectly. The food is some of the best I have ever eaten, locally sourced and absolutely no shortage of it. Michael Magner the owner and all the staff could not do enough for us. We decorated the hotel with our mirror table plan, sparklers, garlands, lanterns on the day long with all the Christmas decor. It was the perfect venue for us.
What is your favourite memory from your wedding day?
I have so many, but there is one that stands out the most. We were sitting at the top of the church, the priest was blessing the gifts and Bruce Springsteen Dancing in the Dark was playing. Andrew and I were holding hands and I just had a moment where I was so present, I could feel the love in the room from everyone. And although not everyone important to us could be there with us, I knew they were with us in spirit. I felt I was exactly where I was supposed to be and I thought to myself, if you ever feel low or are going through a hard time, remember this moment and how you feel right. I do believe that feeling and moment will stay with me forever.
Have you got any advice for other couples?
Oh my goodness yes! Firstly, honestly, it all comes together I promise, I was the queen of things going wrong on the lead-up, my whole joke was all I kept saying was ‘it will be grand’ and even though didn’t believe it at times it was. So don’t worry it will be perfect and you are just on such a high, the small stuff doesn’t matter.
Next we were given the best advice by good friends of ours, to stay on the dance floor and everyone came to you. We decide to do this and my god did it work! On top of having the most amazing band The Pearly Whites, the dance floor was full all night long and everyone had a blast.
Lastly relax and enjoy yourselves, it’s honestly hands down the best day of your lives, you are floating around the world for weeks afterwards, so take it all in and enjoy the start of your new life together.
Wedding venue: Vienna Woods Hotel Cork | Photographer: DK Photo | Planner/coordinator: Michael Magner | Church musician: Something Blue Acoustics | Band and DJ: The Pearly Whites | Hair: Upstyle Junkie | Makeup: Jeanette Cronin | Dress: Enzoani Leonie from Diamond Bridal | Suits: Tom Murphy’s | Bridesmaids dresses: Online | Cake: Baker Boy Cakes | Celebrant: Fr Hazelwood | Stationery: Minted.com | Earrings: Azure | Rings: Affinity Diamond | Flowers: West Cork Flowers
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Kelly is a former wedding planner and a lover of anything pink. She believes that any bride can plan her own wedding, with a few tips and helpful tools.