Beach weddings by the ocean, in the open air, against the most beautiful of backdrops demand a stunning dress that’s designed for both hot weather and beauty. Images from left…
Written by Paula Jones Last updated: October 6, 2006
I went to visit an old friend in Plymouth where she was studying and Chris lived in the same house as her. The first time we met he was playing a computer game and I barely noticed him. The second time, suffice to say we took a little more notice of each other! That was at the beginning of November 2001.
He proposed on the 24th of September 2004 in a hotel room in Edinburgh. He planned a surprise weekend for me to Edinburgh, booked a really nice hotel, a very swanky restaurant (in the Hilton) and brought me shopping for a new outfit to wear. The only thing was he proposed to me the night before we went to the restaurant because he was so nervous. He had asked my dad and all!
Yes, Chris went to Bristol with about 10-15 lads for paint balling and general drunkenness. I went to my hometown in Ireland where my sister and chief bridesmaid organised a BBQ and drinking in all our old haunts with about 10-15 girls. It was brilliant and so much fun.
He organised the cake, but as he said in his speech, my sister who helped organise most things made up for him not being involved at all.
Yes, I used the forums a lot to get advice from people. I also used the magazines for ideas and got my cameras for the tables.
Cameras for tables and I bought them online.
I had a very slim line dress which was an Amanda Wakeley dress. I bought it off the Internet for £105, dress and shawl.
I had my three younger sisters, Michelle, Sharon and Clare. They wore black dresses from Debut at Debenhams. I also had my niece, Chris’s sister and my nephew as flower girls and pageboy. The girls wore Tigerlily dresses from Debenhams and Eoin had a hired suit like the rest of the male bridal party.
He chose his best friend, Rhys, as his best man, and his two friends, Ross and Olaf, as groomsmen. They wore suits from a local hire shop.
I had a very short Catholic ceremony which didn’t include the Eucharist as Chris isn’t Catholic.
Our ceremony was in the Church of the Assumption, The Heath, Portlaoise, Ireland.
The reception was at The Dolmen Hotel, Carlow.
We had a 1966 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow. It was dark grey and absolutely gorgeous. It really made my day!
We had 77 guests to the dinner, and invited more people to the evening but I can’t remember how many turned up in the end.
The hotel set up the room for us. They had yellow chair covers and black and white tablecloths but that wasn’t something that I was too worried about.
My florist was a company called All Occasions in Portlaoise. My flowers were amazing – I had orange and yellow Gerberas with black centres to tie in with the black dresses for the bridesmaids. I had a hand tied bouquet with black beargrass sweeping down which added a bit of drama to the flowers and looked amazing in the photos. My flower girls carried little golden holders with gerberas in them. The lads all had a yellow rose as a buttonhole and the floral arrangements in the church were fabulous.
The hotel did the catering. We had chicken Caesar salad, vegetable soup, stuffed Chicken wrapped in bacon or peppered sirloin, and a toffee ice cream gateau. It was delicious.
We had a three tiered cake made by a local woman in Portlaoise. The bottom tier was fruit, the second tier was chocolate biscuit and the top tier was strawberry shortcake – yum yum.
We had singers for the ceremony and in the evening we had a DJ.
We had a very small list with Debenhams. It was quite good and we were very happy with the service from them.
Our first night was in the Dolmen. The next night we stayed in the Great Southern Hotel in Dublin Airport and then we flew with First Choice to Kenya. We stayed in the Severin Sea Lodge in Bamburi. It was gorgeous.
The most memorable thing for me was the best man’s speech. It was absolutely brilliant and everyone loved it.
The Thursday before was when the whole terrorist thing kicked off and Chris was still in England. It didn’t affect us that badly – people were very delayed but that wasn’t so bad. The other thing was one of the groomsmen pulled out the week before but we replaced him easily enough so that was ok.
I’d appreciate all the work other people put in more, and say that yes, it is your day, but so many people have given up time, money and energy and for that, you should be thankful.