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Remember I told you I’d be featuring more classic weddings? Well, this is the first in line, and it’s one that totally reaffirms my decision. I love this wedding. The styling is a vintage travel theme, complete with a cake shaped like a suitcase! And the table plan was a map of the world, with each table named after a country the couple had explored together. It’ll appeal to all you brides and grooms who love a bit of traditional travel à la Some Like it Hot, Phileas Fogg, and the Orient Express. The overall day is classy and colourful, with quirky styling for the reception, and it’s all captured in beautiful photography by the very talented Brideen. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy…

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Edel and Matt were married on June 15th, 2013, at St.Peter’s Church, Warrenpoint, with the reception at Ballydugan Mill, Downpatrick, Northern Ireland.

I chose the ceremony venue because it was in the town where I grew up, and as a child my friends and I used to watch the weddings through the railings of our school gates. I always hoped that one day I would get married there…

And Edel says of Ballydugan Mill:

It’s old, yet fully modernised, traditional, yet quirky, a country retreat…

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Edel, tell us about how you met…

We met in Sydney in 2009. After holidaying a couple of times in Australia, I had always wanted to go back and live there for a year or two, which I eventually did, and Matthew was there on a year out travelling. We started work in the same company on the same day, and ended up becoming friends and eventually dating! I was unsure of it at first because he was younger than me, but I soon gave in and I’m glad I did!

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The proposal!

Matthew took me on holiday to Morocco and threw into the conversation on the flight that he was planning to propose in about six months. He said it so convincingly that he completely threw me off the scent, and I remember feeling so disappointed. I didn’t have to wait too long, though, as he got down on one knee with the most beautiful ring over breakfast on the rooftop the next morning!

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The planning of the big day
Edel received a couple of beautiful wedding planner journals from friends when she got engaged, and so kept a note of every little detail she’d seen and liked, and cut out pictures of colours, dresses, décor, etc.

I tried to plan a little every week from the very start of the engagement so that it never got on top of me.

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The photography

Brideen and her partner Declan are extremely talented photographers that I had the privilege to meet through my business, Bloomin’ Bridal. They’re not only very creative and talented, but also very professional and really nice people. It was important to us that we liked and knew everyone involved in the wedding. Brideen and Declan blended into the guest list easily and helped make our day stress free! They’ve an eye for detail that I’ve never seen before, and so the photos were perfect and will be treasured for years to come.

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The DIY/thrify bits
This wedding was a DIY triumph with a little bit of thrift. Edel made the invitations, table plan, place names, favours, menus, bunting, pew flower arrangements, table numbers and thank you cards. She also made the bridesmaids’ bouquets, and her mum made all the ceremony and reception floral displays.

I also put the sweetie table together, organised a tailor made cocktail drinks reception served in jam jars that my neighbour spent a year collecting – needless to say she is now sick of jam!

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Advice for brides- and grooms-to-be?

  • Plan early to avoid stress
  • Keep control of your budget (it’s so easy to go overboard) and pay for something every week so you don’t notice big payments going out at one time!
  • Make sure you keep your dreams and goals in sight
  • Make as many little bits and pieces yourself to make your day original and tailored to your own personalities
  • Try to involve family and friends as much as possible, as it makes your day that little bit more special…

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Any advice for married life that you’ve learned so far?

Listen to each other, compromise and share the housework! After all, when I said “I do,” I didn’t mean the dishes!

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Roll Credits
Photography – Photography by Brideen
Bride’s dress – ‘Grace Kelly’ dress by David Fielden with customised sleeves sourced through bride’s own company Bloomin’ Bridal.
Bride’s shoes and jewellery – Jenny Packham
Groom’s suit – Burton Menswear
Bridesmaids – Dress CodeGirls of Elegance, and Fran and Jane
Best men – various
Flower girls – Monsoon, and BHS
Cake – Cakes by James
Reception venue – Ballydugan Mill

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The Gallery