17/04/2004 – Our Lady Queen of Peace, Southbourne, Bournemouth
The Dormy Hotel, Ferndown, Bournemouth
How and when did you meet?
Seamus and I met at work in August 2002, we worked on a number of bids together.
Where, when and how did he (or you!) propose?
Seamus proposed just before our first anniversary on the 14th August 2003 at a beautiful hotel in Newbury. It was all a complete surprise, it was a Thursday evening – we had just been to a house viewing and were taking the long way home, or so I thought. It wasn’t until we were on the main road out of Bournemouth I figured something was going on. Seamus’s only comment was that we weren’t going home! An hour later we arrived at the most fantastic 5* vineyard hotel. Obviously at this point I’m starting to wonder what was really is going on. . . . there were a dozen red roses in the room and a bottle of champagne cooling. Luckily we had time to enjoy the spa facilities before having dinner. Obviously because I didn’t have a clue this was happening, Seamus had packed my bag, and yes all my sexy underwear was there! Our table at dinner was incredible (I know now the hotel knew what was happening. Our table was in a private balcony overlooking the restaurant. Five courses later suddenly Seamus was there on one knee with an unbelievable platinum diamond solitaire ring asking me to marry him, without any hesitation I said yes and was totally blown away.
Did you have hen and stag celebrations?
For my hen do I went back to Southampton, where I’m from. We had an afternoon at the theatre and then dinner and evening entertainment.
Seamus went to the Grand National in Aintree (suits him completely with his Irish genes!). The lads dressed up as John McCrirrick and he had a great time by all accounts!!
Did your groom help you with the wedding planning?
Seamus was really helpful with all the larger decisions such as the hotel, car, menus, band, honeymoon, order of service, rings etc. When it came to other smaller details such as favours and balloons he wasn’t that fussed!
Did you use confetti to plan your wedding? If so, how did the website help you?
Yes, I found the ‘to do list’ for each person incredibly helpful. In fact this was my bible to planning our big day. I was also addicted to the cafe forum and found the advice and friendliness really helpful. If I’m honest I’m still addicted now and we’ve been married for five months!
Did you buy any confetti products for your wedding? If so, did you visit a store, buy online or by mail order?
Yes, where do I start! Nearly all my table decorations were purchased online from confetti.
Tell us about your outfit, and where you bought it
My wedding dress was truly the most amazing dress to me. It was by Mori Lee – a very simple, strapless dress that wrapped around me.
Did you have bridesmaids? If so, who did you choose and what did they wear?
I had one adult bridesmaid – Lorraine. She currently lives in Glasgow and we met while working together for six months and hit it off straight away. She’s always there for me even though we are at opposite ends of the country. As my colour scheme was baby blue and silver, it was difficult to get a colour match to the men’s outfits so my mum kindly made Lorraine’s dress.
Who did your groom choose for his best man and ushers, and what did they wear?
Seamus chose Rich, his university mate from 11 years ago. To make things interesting Rich now lives in South Africa but he still managed to organise an unbelievable stag do.
Did you have a civil or religious ceremony?
Roman Catholic ceremony even though I’m not catholic.
Where did you hold your ceremony?
Our Lady Queen of Peace in Southbourne.
Where did you hold your reception?
The Dormy Hotel in Ferndown.
Did you have any special wedding transport?
Yes, we hired a mini bus from the church to the hotel.
How many guests did you invite to your wedding, and did you have a separate evening guest list?
We had a sit down wedding breakfast for 100 guest and another 50 guests came for the evening reception.
Did your reception have a particular theme in terms of colour or style?
Our theme was baby blue and silver, hearts and bows.
How did you incorporate this in to your table settings?
All table decorations were either blue or silver; favours were blue with silver flowers, we had baby blue disposable cameras, blue and silver balloons, silver heart table names and blue and silver table confetti.
Did you give your guests favours?
Yes, sugared almonds.
Describe your flowers (bouquets and table decorations). Who was your florist?
My bouquet was round and incorporated ivory roses and fucshia with green foligage. Lorraines was a smaller version of mine. Seamus’s buttonhole included foliage with his single ivory rose. Buttonholes for the best man and dads had less foligage and the rest of family had just a simple ivory rose. Both mums had a corsage of ivory fucshias. Church pedestals were a mixture of white flowers like our top table. All flowers were done by a friend of a friend. I was very lucky – they were amazing.
What did you choose to have on your menu? Did you have an outside caterer or did your venue handle the catering?
The venue organised our catering.
What did you choose for your wedding cake?
Our wedding cake, was the best travelled cake ever. Seamus’s auntie kindly made it in Ireland and then I found a local lady who iced it for us for £25! It was a three tier stacked cake covered in ivory icing with blue flowers on the top. Each layer had ‘to have and to hold from this day forward’ iced around it.
Did you have any entertainment during the day or evening?
We had an Irish band from London. They were fantastic and incorporated a good range of both English and Irish music.
Did you have a gift list? If so, who did you have your list with?
Our gift list was held at John Lewis.
Where did you spend your first night and honeymoon?
We had a complimentary suite at The Dormy Hotel – it was huge! For our honeymoon Seamus and I did three stops. We started at a health farm in Normandy, France and then went to Paris and finally Disneyland Paris.
What was your most memorable moment of the day?
There are just so many, but I guess it has to be placing Seamus wedding ring on his finger and becoming Mr and Mrs B.
Is there anything you would do differently, or any advice you would give to other brides?
I wouldn’t have done anything differently. It truly was the best day ever and my advice (like so many other brides said to me) is to enjoy every second because the day goes so quickly.