Good morning beautiful. We celebrated reaching 19,000 Instagram followers yesterday. Are you one of them? Instagram has swiftly become our social media channel of choice. We LOVE it – a fabulous quick visual fix that you can enjoy throughout the day. Many of our readers are finding new suppliers via our feed and the conversation is bubbling over there too. Find us at instagram.com/lovemydress – we look forward to seeing you there!
Film by A Cinematic Life
In this morning’s featured wedding, bride Leanne, a Deputy Halls Manager at the University of Liverpool, married David, a Quality Manager for a Glass Manufacture, on 11th April this year at Castle Leslie Estate in Glaslough, Co.Monaghan, Ireland.
“I wanted our day to be an elegant relaxed family affair – Pinterest was my saving grace and provided me with endless inspiration in addition to wedding blogs and styled bridal photography shoots. “
“The colours of early spring also inspired me – I love walking through woodland in early spring and I wanted that fresh, dewy, wild floral look in the flowers and centrepieces.”
Vanilla Retro, I knew instantly it suited the theme I wanted and it tied everything together. Once Michelle had completed the final design I took the print files to The Print Factory in Liverpool.
Michelle at Vanilla Retro designed an order of service and menu booklet cover to allow us to design and print the internal pages of our order of service and the dinner menu which really helped us make any last minute changes. David assembled the booklets and enlisted some help from the bestman Rory who owns a stationary supplies business!”
“We organised the wedding ourselves with the help of Castle Leslie Wedding Coordinators Helen and Roisin who were fantastic and on the day Jonathan, John and their team of staff were amazing, nothing was too much trouble. David and I are both from Ireland, myself from Co. Fermanagh and David from Co. Leitrim in the north west of Ireland but we met in a glass and bottling factory in Cheshire which at the time was owned by an Irish company.”
“After countless bridal shopping trips in Liverpool, Manchester, Edinburgh, Dublin and Belfast I finally found my ‘Cassandra’ by Sarah Janks at The White Gallery Boutique. The boutique is located just outside the City of Newry. Rachel’s boutique stocks contemporary wedding dresses by international designers and her range of dresses are different to your traditional bridal boutique. Some of the designers she stocks are exclusive to The White Gallery in Northern Ireland and Ireland.”
Rachel was fantastic it was refreshing to have a boutique owner who understood what I was after and was totally honest with what suited and did not suit me. She also was able to squeeze me in for appointments last minute when I was flying back from Liverpool.”
“When I was looking for wedding dresses I had it in my mind that I wanted something floaty, slightly bohemian, but I could not find anything that suited me until I started to try on more simple silk gowns. When I first saw the dress I thought it was nearly too simple until my sister urged me to try it on.”
“As our wedding was on a Saturday, we decided to have our close friends and family stay at the venue from the Friday, after the rehearsal in the little church onsite we all went for an informal dinner and drinks the night before which helped us all relax, it felt like we were on a family holiday!”
“Shoe shopping was a nightmare for me as I have wide feet I really struggled to find the perfect pair. Then I spotted my shoes in Debenhams and my mum suggested I took them to a shoe repair shop who widened them slightly for me and they fitted perfect!”
“Castle Leslie is a family run Irish Estate known for its food, Irish hospitality and charm. We wanted somewhere where we could spend the weekend together with our closest friends and family and Castle Leslie ticked all the boxes amazing food, accommodation, fabulous grounds and a church onsite! The owner of the Estate Sir Jack Leslie even took the time to come and say hello after our meal.”
“I wore Jo Malone English Pear and Freesia as it reminded me of when we got engaged, it has a gorgeous fresh floral scent.
I just loved the fact that my ‘Cassandra’ dress by Sarah Janks from The White Gallery Boutique was cut on the bias, with no zips/buttons/corsets to worry about. All I had to do was literally step into the dress; the silk fabric felt beautiful and came with the most stunning embroidered belt that finished the dress off perfectly. Once I tried it on I felt so comfortable and elegant in it.”
“I purchased my earrings from a small jeweller in Belfast and they cost less than £10! I spent a long time trying to find a bracelet that was very plain and simple and i finally found it in Debenhams in Belfast. Words of advice for any brides out there, you do not need to spend a fortune on jewellery, be open to the high street where you can find little gems!”
“Living at home in Ireland after University, a job opportunity arose within the company who were setting up in England and asked if I was interested in moving to Cheshire to work for them. Getting itchy feet living back home with the parents after Uni I jumped at the chance!
On my first day I was introduced to David who took me on a tour of the factory. I was immediately struck by how friendly David was and he made me feel right at home. Months passed and we got closer together, he would always pop into my office to have a chat and see how I was settling in, at the time I didn’t think anything off until we had a house party where I was staying and he asked me for a kiss goodnight and to take me out on a date.”
“Our first date was a day trip to Liverpool to see all the sights and a late lunch at Eddie Rockets 50’S styled diner for a burger and milkshake. After our first date David and I were inseparable, moving in with each other after just three months of dating! But it was only after 6 months that I sat down with my parents and told them about David and I being together as we were from different religious backgrounds. As the years went by my parents started to accept David and I being together and that we loved each other very much.
We always talked about getting married but it was not until we were together over seven years that the time felt right as we were both wanted to enjoy our twenties before settling down. David suggested that we went looking for engagement rings and only weeks later David asked me to marry him on Crosby beach amongst the Iron men of Anthony Gormelys ‘Another Place’ art installation back in June 2013.”
“We had a long engagement and decided to have our wedding in April 2015 which allowed us more time to book the suppliers we really wanted and save more money to have the wedding we always wanted.”
“I wanted to walk to the church which was only 500 meters from where we were staying, but typical Irish weather it changes so quickly and it started to rain as I was leaving to go to the church. Castle Leslie were quick to arrange the estate Range Rover to transport me and my dad off to the church!”
“When I was walking down the aisle I could see my family and friends welling up with tears and I was not until I got to the top of the aisle I realised my dad was welling up which set me off in tears too! I am the first in our family to get married so it was quite an emotional day for everyone.”
“David’s mum Gerarda is a pianist and music teacher and organised the most amazing string quartet called ‘Bohemian Strings’ to play during our service and at the reception. I wanted a song that was traditional but something different to Canon in D and Bridal March.
Gerarda suggested a piece called ‘Ashokan Farewell’, a song composed by Jay Ungar, a Scottish lament about saying goodbye after having a good time. As soon as I heard it I could not stop thinking about it and knew it was the one for me.”
“We kept our vows traditional to Church of Ireland wedding vows. I asked my two very close friends from University to do our readings during the Church service one was a poem and another was an extract from the Bible. Kirsten read the poem by Robert Burns called Red Red Rose in her beautiful Scottish accent and Elaine read Corinthians 13: 1-13.
I chose Red Red rose by Robert Burns as Kirsten who is Scottish had it at her wedding and since I was marrying a Mr Burns I thought Red Red rose was very fitting for our ceremony. We chose Corinthians as Elaine had it at her wedding and it reminds you of the meaning of love.”
“My engagement ring was from Boodles in Liverpool and our wedding rings were from David M Robinson in Liverpool. We only purchased our rings 3 weeks before the wedding, luckily they had the exact ring in the fit we both needed!”
“Castle Leslie has a beautiful Church of Ireland Church on the grounds of the Estate, after a number of meetings with the Canon and church Warden they allowed us to marry in the church right next to our venue. As we are from different religious backgrounds we asked David’s family priest Fr Sean to be part of the ceremony along with our family minister Reverend John.”
“Shopping for my bridesmaid dresses was quite difficult as they are both quite tall and have different tastes. I just loved the range of styles and colours that Maids to Measure offered however.”
“We are absolutely delighted with our photographs by Paula McManus. Once I had discovered her work, I knew it was the style of photography we were after. We met Paula when we stayed in Belfast for a long weekend and soon discovered she grew up only a couple of miles from my home place.
As my brother and his fiancée travelled from New Zealand for the wedding we incorporated our engagement shoot into a family shoot the week before the wedding which was a great idea as Paula got to meet us and our family and it meant that our family on the day of the wedding were more relaxed in the photographs.”
“My brothers Fiancée Amy, lives in New Zealand and returned home for the wedding. Amy along with my youngest sister Sarah Jane are fully qualified florists who met in college and when we got engaged I wanted Amy and Sarah Jane to do my flowers as both girls are so talented and creative. Many conference Skype phone calls and Pinterest boards later Amy and Sarah Jane knew exactly what I wanted and ordered the flowers from a wholesaler in Belfast.”
“A few days before the wedding we packed up a van and drove to Belfast to collect the flowers. All three of us were like kids in a sweetshop! I wanted my flowers to look informal like a wild meadow and to reflect early spring blooms, so I included a lot of foliage and in season flowers in my arrangement’s to cut down on costs and we also pilfered David’s uncles Brendan’s fantastic garden.”
The girls made posies of flowers in jam jars as pew ends and two arrangements in the church as well as buttonholes, bouquets and table centre pieces.
Sarah Jane’s fiancée Kyle ( a trained carpenter!) built the wooden arch backdrop which we placed around the cake table using branches of wild cherry tree that were felled on my father’s land and decorated it with trailing ivy which he foraged from a bridge below a dual carriageway. Amy, Sarah Jane and Kyle worked very hard in pulling everything together and I will be forever grateful for their help, the flowers and arrangement’s looked absolutely stunning!”
“We hired Event Planners NI to partially decorate the Pavillion where the reception was being held, they provided us with chivari chairs, uplighters to give a soft glow and they dressed the fire exit doors with curtain draping.”
“To decorate the cake table I baked rhubarb and custard flavoured meringue kisses which we placed on cake stands with small tartlets. As David is a massive fan of Lego we decided to go for a Lego cake topper. So off David went to the Lego shop in Liverpool One and spent and afternoon choosing and building our cake topper (any excuse to play with lego!).
My sister Sarah Jane baked a fruit cake and iced it with blush pink rose petal detailing which I wanted for the top tier of my wedding cake. For the remaining cakes Sarah Jane enlisted the help of an old school friend, Sharon Finlay, Chef and proprietor of The Sheelin Kitchen Café. I wanted an abundant looking cake table and Sharon created three amazing cakes of flavours that I love to accompany the fruit cake. The flavours were carrot, Aero Mint chocolate and madeira.”
“We hired Entertainment – The Rockits band – they were fantastic and really rocked our wedding. In the run up to the wedding we were very undecided in our first dance song, as we didn’t want anything too cheesy. We decided at the last minute to have James Bay – ‘Hold Back The River’ as our first dance as it was popular in the run up to the wedding. The song is about not being able to spend a lot of time with your friends and family and as we both live away from our closest friends and family we felt it was a very fitting song.
We were very lucky that our very talented band The Rockits were able to practice it with very short notice and they performed it beautifully on the night.”
“It is hard to choose our favourite moment of the day, as our ceremony was fantastic and it was lovely to have my family minister and David’s family priest taking part in the ceremony. But most of all we loved having all our friends and family together on the dance floor having the craic. When 3am came David’s family who are all excellent singers started singing Irish folk songs in the resident’s bar which carried on until we all decided maybe it was time to go to bed at 5am!
I wished we had spent more time mingling with our guests before dinner, but due to the weather changing constantly we had to keep dashing in and out for photographs.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom
“In the run up to the wedding, we took some photographs of our preparations which looking back makes me realise the work that everyone put in and reminds you how you felt at the time as its not all about one day. On the day of the wedding my good friend Kirsten had her camera and took pictures of my family and friends setting up the venue and getting ready which is lovely to look back on.
If you can take time out before the big day. I was lucky to be off work two weeks before the wedding and it was fantastic being in my family home seeing old friends and going running every day in the countryside which helped clear my mind.
Use your friends and families talents – this really paid off and helped save a lot of money. I was so grateful for everyone’s help and creativity.
Finally, its not all about one day, it is about the journey ahead of you and the memories that you will create.
What an exquisite affair – the epitome of effortless elegance. Huge thanks to photographer Paula Mc Manus for sharing these inspiring set of photographs. I wonder if they may have converted any of you lovely readers to consider becoming a Sarah Janks bride? I’d absolutely LOVE to hear from you if so.
Much love and thanks also to Leanne and David – I feel very privileged that we get to share your beautiful day through this beautiful blog – thank you so much and huge congratulations to both of you.
Sending all the Tuesday love,
Love Annabel xx
Photographer – Paula Mc Manus
Stylist – Event Planners NI
Film – A Cinematic Life
Venue + Catering – Castle Leslie Estate in Glaslough, Co.Monaghan, Ireland
Brides Dress – Cassandra by Sarah Janks via The White Gallery Boutique
Headpiece – wax flower headpiece created by a friend
Bride’s Shoes – No. 1 Jenny Packham from Debenhams
Perfume – Jo Malone English Pear and Freesia
Groom – DIGEL + Mulberry cufflinks
Bridesmaid’s – Maids to Measure via The White Gallery Boutique
Florist + Cake – Family
Entertainment – The Rockits band
Stationery – Vanilla Retro
Hair Stylist – Kim – Cameo Hair, Glaslough, Co.Monaghan
Makeup – Amanda Boland Dublin