“On the morning of the wedding, my sister came into my room to wake me, telling me I was getting married today! Then when we were all dressed, ready and Champagne in hand we danced around the kitchen to Mumford and Sons.”
– Bride Eimear on her favourite moments from the big day
Length of engagement: 11 months | Wedding date: 18th August 2012
Wedding ceremony: Culmullen Church | Wedding reception: Clonabreany House, Co Meath
Photographer: Julie Cummins Photography
We met… David and I had always been close by growing up but had never met. We shared many of the same friends and had been to many of the same places during our teens. David went to school and played on the same football team as my cousin so when I had some single friends I met travelling staying with me I asked my cousin to bring some of his cute football friends along for a night out and finally our introduction happened! We met in O’Donoghue’s off Baggot Street in Dublin and clicked!
My dress… Choosing my dress was a lot more challenging that I had anticipated. As we were living in Vancouver my sister and mom weren’t able to join me on my hunt for the dress which I think kept me from saying yes to the dress in a hurry! Thankfully I had some very helpful friends who agreed to come shopping with me. After trying too many dresses to mention I went to Something Blue (somethingbluevancouver.com) and found the one. They design their own dresses but allowed me to make some changes to make it exactly as I wanted. In the end I loved how it sparkled and I felt like a million dollars.
Our proposal… I was turning 30 and wanted to celebrate in style so David planned a fabulous trip to New York for us. We went to one of the many trendy restaurants in the city for a meal. Then David suggested we go to the Empire State Building to see the city at night so… at the top of the Empire State Building while looking over Central Park David whispered his proposal into my ear. I cried, smiled and whispered back YES, then I cried some more!
Our wedding theme/colours… I loved looking at wedding blogs while planning for our wedding. Some of my favourite were lovemydress.net, stylemepretty.com, onefabday.ie, weddingsonline.ie and greenweddingshoes.com. There’s lots of inspiration for brides and grooms so when it came to picking just one theme I found it difficult. I experienced a bit of “wedding theme overload” (much to the amusement of some of my friends!) however it was our venue (Clonabreany House) that really helped set the tone and theme we hoped to create for our big day. We were living in Vancouver, Canada up until a few months before our wedding so choosing the colours and bridesmaids dresses was left in the capable hands of my glamorous sister Orla and mom Carol. I wanted short, summer style dresses for bridesmaids and Orla picked the watermelon colour.
Our ceremony… We got married in Culmullen Church in Co Meath. The church was beautiful and our florist Vita at VP Flowers helped make it even more special. One of my favourite DIY projects was using my granny’s old high nelly bike in keeping with our old, country theme as the mass booklet holder. Vita was so helpful and great to work with. She also created really unique bouquets.
Our church music… was played by our very talented friends. We had a mixture of styles but after lots of consideration we decided on some great songs. I loved listening to the music during the ceremony. I walked up the aisle to Nelly Fantasia sung by Sarah Bass which still gives me a little shiver down my spine when I hear it and we walked down the aisle to Sharon Shannon, Blackbird played on the guitar and fiddle by our friends Deirdre and Siobhan.
“One of my favourite DIY projects was using my granny’s old high nelly bike in keeping with our old, country theme as the mass booklet holder.”
We chose our photographer because…She’s fabulous! Julie Cummins is a neighbour of ours and has photographed some of our friend’s weddings. She knew many of our guests which we felt would help keep everyone very relaxed in front of the camera. Her fun, natural style really appealed to us. You spend a large portion of your day with the photographer. Julie was so nice to work with and we enjoyed having her with us on our day.
“She’s fabulous! Her fun, natural style really appealed to us. She was so nice to work with and we enjoyed having her with us on our day.”
– Eimear, on photographer Julie Cummins
“I loved the idea of a marquee in the country and an old, vintage feel for our wedding surrounded by the rolling hills of Meath. Clonabreany truly is an intimate and fabulous wedding venue.”
– Eimear on why they chose Clonabreany House as their wedding venue
We chose our venue because… Clonabreany House is an old resorted Georgian house set on the backdrop of some beautiful countryside. They’ve built a permanent marquee as the reception hall. I loved the idea of a marquee in the country and an old, vintage feel for our wedding surrounded by the rolling hills of Meath where we’re both from. We both wanted a relaxed feel to the wedding and Clonabreany House really allowed for this especially with the converted cottages as the guest accommodation. It truly is an intimate and fabulous wedding venue.
“There’s lots of inspiration for brides and grooms so when it came to picking just one theme I found it difficult. I experienced a bit of “wedding theme overload” (much to the amusement of some of my friends!)”
My favourite part of the wedding day… We had so many special moments throughout the day, in fact the entire day from beginning to end was special however there are a couple of standout moments.. the morning of the wedding, the speeches for David, dancing to Springbreak, our wedding band. On the morning of the wedding my sister came into my room to wake me, telling me I was getting married today! We both had a little shrill of excitement and so set the mood for the day. When we were all dressed, ready and champagne in hand we danced around the kitchen to Mumford and Sons. David spent the morning with the groomsmen getting some ‘man grooming’ done. They had hot towel shaves and a champagne breakfast! However I think the highlight for me was entering the reception as Mr & Mrs Tonge, holding hands walking through a room full of family and friends smiling and clapping for us.
My piece of advice for other brides… Enjoy every minute of your wedding from the moment you get engaged to the moment you say I do. It goes by so fast. Enjoy all the little things but edit if you are getting overwhelmed by them. I loved adding some personal DIY touches to our day like my Granny’s bike, a photograph display, our table plan and table postcards, photos of our parents on their wedding day. I had lots more projects I wanted to do but in the end I had to cut and choose just a few.
The day is better shared, enjoy your family and guests. They are all there to celebrate with you. We had round, smaller tables which I hope helped everyone relax more and mingle.
Choose a good band.
If your budget allows, get a wedding video. We used Big Day Films and were extremely pleased with our video.
Tell your husband/wife you love them.
Our honeymoon… We went to Rome and Tuscany for our honeymoon. It was the perfect setting for long, lazy lunches in the sun, sipping coffee and red wine discussing every detail of the wedding at length!
“I think the highlight for me was entering the reception as Mr & Mrs Tonge, holding hands walking through a room full of family and friends smiling and clapping for us.”
By Karen Birney
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Former editor, current contributor, (she just can't let go!) Karen enjoys writing fashion but is known to dabble in decor from time to time. Her favourite section on the site is the Real Wedding section, followed closely by the Health & Fitness forums.