“We had a winter wedding theme. The colours we went with for our theme were burgundy/mulberry along with blush pink.”
Your Names: Julie Kelly & Will Heffernan
Length of engagement: 2.5 years
Wedding Date: 2019-12-29
Wedding location: Bellingham Castle
Photographer: Golden Moments Wedding Photography & Film
How did you meet and get engaged?
We met on a night out in Dublin and unplanned met again on a subsequent night out. Got engaged in Benalmádena, Spain.
Describe your wedding:
We had a winter wedding theme. Winter wreath was on our invitation design. We incorporated this again at our ceremony with a large floral wreath on the chapel wall and hung handmade bride and groom winter wreaths on the back of our chapel chairs. The colours we went with for our theme were burgundy/mulberry along with blush pink.
Tell us about your bridal look:
I would describe my bridal look as boho. I wore a fabulous Rue de Seine boho bridal gown. The detail in the dress up close was stunning. I chose a dress with sleeves for the time of the year. My jewellery was simply pearl drop earrings as a result of the high neckline and long sleeves. I went for high open toe sandal shoes from Dune London as I needed the height as I am only 5ft2. I liked the sparkle detail on the shoes. My makeup I wanted understated and I wanted to look like myself on the day of my wedding and not drastically different. I went with subtle makeup with a nice blush pink blusher and a pinkish lip. I went for hair down with boho curls/waves. I wore a fresh flower crown to complete my look handmade by my amazing florist. I was undecided about a veil until the very last minute but glad I chose to wear one in the end.
What did your bridesmaids wear?
My bridesmaids wore mulberry/burgundy dresses with sequin detail on top. I thought it for perfect with the time of year.
What was your ceremony like?
The ceremony took place in Woodside Chapel, Castlebellingham. A private restored church for now non-religious ceremonies. We had intended to marry in a church however having a Sunday wedding we found it impossible for a priest to marry us on a Sunday. We were set on the date so we looked for alternatives. I saw a piece on Woodside Chapel on RTEs nationwide and said I would look it up. Turns out it was located just 5 minutes from our venue, Bellingham Castle.
Once I viewed the chapel, it was love at first sight. It was quaint and simply stunning. I used the owner Donna’s decorative input as well as my florist and Magic Moment Ireland to complete the decor and detail for our ceremony. I had also invested in some of my own touches e.g. A wooden welcome to our wedding and a memorial block with a vacant seat in memory of my late mother, who was missed greatly that day. Our celebrant was Lorraine McCarthy.
The ceremony was traditional in parts – the walk down the aisle – my mam’s sister walked me down in place of my lovely Mam. We lit our individual candles, we had two non-religious readings, Lorraine told our guests our love story, we had five religious prayers of the faithful, we did traditional vows and exchanging of rings. We then did 2 ceremony enhancements – the time capsule enhancement and Celtic handwashing. We signed the register.
As music we had a harpist/singer. I made and printed my own ceremony scrolls for guests. We had a Volkswagen vintage cream van. Our car was from the company Wolksweddings. I think it fitted in great with our intended theme. It took myself, 4 bridesmaids, my aunt and flower girl to the chapel. It then took us and our 2 young children to the venue.
Tell us about your wedding venue:
Bellingham Castle was like a fairytale. The castle itself and the grounds were simply stunning. The staff were incredible. I could not speak higher of their work. On arrival for guests there was a range of beautiful canapes and a drinks reception of prosecco, bottled beer and mulled wine + tea/coffee/cordial etc.
I had our ceremony harpist/singer play at the reception also. I had arranged a donut wall also from Offbeat Donuts who kindly delivered fresh donuts that day. I had a fingerprint guestbook and little touches and signs around the venue. The function room the Bute suite was beautifully arranged for us. My cake table was simple and elegant.
I opted for fresh flowers on the cake and I got the cake topper specially made in a mirror effect. The florist took my alter flowers and put them on the top table. I also hot her to add flowers to half of the tables to complete my theme. I had bought simple wooden pieces with the word love on them to go at each place setting. I had a candy cart set up. I had made kids attended the wedding a surprise box to keep them entertained.
In lieu of wedding favours we had donations cards on the tables for the charity research motor neurone, the disease my mam had died from. I also had a sign and a candle on a table beside the top table to remember the dearly departed on our day. The meal was sensational. Our guests still rave about the food saying it was the best wedding food they had ever had. We entered to music of our choice, we had our meal first and speeches afterwards and probably unconventional, the bride made a speech, first!
After we cut the cake, we did sparklers out the back of the castle with all our guests. Our first dance was to Boyce Avenue’s version of Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream. We danced the night away. We had a selfie mirror in the room also. The Castle has a 24 hour kitchen and after all the dancing the bridal party chatted away here to finish our night/morning out!
What is your favourite memory from your wedding day?
We genuinely loved every minute of it. We made a point of enjoying it as that’s the advice we were given by many leading up to the big day.
Have you got any advice for other couples?
– Make the day your own. Have what you want.
– Add your own little touches to make it your day.
– Plan bit by bit, I never felt overwhelmed in any of the process as a result.
– Join HIGM Ireland on Facebook.
– Read weddingsonline reviews.
– Enjoy your day. You will never please everyone.
– Include loved ones who can’t be present with subtle touches.
– Take a moment every now and then throughout the day and take a mental note and take it all in.
Wedding venue: Bellingham Castle | Photographer: Golden Moments | Musician: Rachel Reid Wedding Harpist and Singer | Wedding Band and DJ: The Mixtape | Hair: Leona Keegan | Makeup: Stephanie Burgess MUA | Dress: Rue de Seine Bridal | Suit: DKNY | Bridesmaids dresses: Next Official | Groomsmen outfits: Protocol Menswear | Cake: Custom Cakes, Drogheda | Celebrant: Lorraine McCarthy | Stationery: Papier.com | Jewellery: David Cullen Jewellers | Flowers: Aster Flowers | Decor: Magic Moment
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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.