Through The Eyes of a Bridesmaid – Part 3 – Princess in a Castle

You would think that rain could spoil a wedding day……..this day it couldn’t and didn’t ruin by any means. Heavy rain waited until we had entered Clontarf Castle. Our photographer Paul Kelly (I’m sure he has plenty of experience in rainy Irish weddings!) took the majority of the photographs inside the beautiful church and the magnificent castle. Every precious moment captured, as long as the photographs are beautiful what does it matter if they are inside or outside!! Paul Kelly was there till 11pm and I would highly recommend this to couples if you have a passion for photographs and want the majority of your day documented.
Clontarf Castle, an idyllic setting for a princess wedding is set in lush green grounds, its interior is decorated to the highest standard and it undoubtedly gives you the medieval feel when you walk in the door with suits of armour, classical furniture and wooden beams. It makes it the ideal wedding venue. The wedding dinner was to be held in the ballroom with tables decorated so splendidly it took my breath away. Cranberry tablecloths dressed the tables with cranberry ribbons wrapped around the white chair covers and the opposite for the long top table. Candelabras and magnificent floral centrepieces finished off the tables. Each table names after a wine grape, clearly depicting the couples taste in great wine! A fabulous five tier cake from ‘Icing on the Cake’ stood to the right of the top table with cranberry tinted sugar roses toppling down the side of the masterpiece. I couldn’t wait to be sat in the magical great hall.
The drinks reception was the first port of call…..well that’s what we thought. The bridal party are kidding themselves if they think they will attend this for a long period of time. I would advise you to ask someone to put some food and drinks on the side – especially for the bride and groom who will be off having their photographs taken. As bridesmaids we were left to our duties, post the massive queue for checking into the hotel! We headed to decorate the bathrooms with our bathroom baskets for ladies and gents (details of what we put into these can be found in a previous blog post on Wedding High). We also created a special ‘alternate memory book’ for Emma and Alex, a discovery that I made at a recent wedding we were working at. 6 bottles stood on a table each with a different label signifying an important event in the future ‘1st Baby’, ‘1st anniversary’, ‘first fight’ etc. Guests were asked to write a note to the special couple and roll it up and place it in the wine bottle. The idea is to crack open these bottles when the situation arrives in the near future for you to read back on.
Blessed with a great best friend, who went to the bar on our absence we were greeted with a glass of wine……….eventually it was time to relax and enjoy ourselves!
The bell for dinner rang, family and friends poured into the main hall, the children dragged (or maybe that was just mine :)! to sit down for the wedding feast. Emma and Alex entered the room to a chorus of clapping they were looking gorgeous, perfectly suited and so so happy. Our five course meal was exquisite with the mango and passion fruit sorbet being my highlight. Glasses were constantly being topped up, there was a hum of constant chatter and laughs, everyone was having an amazing time. The speeches were next to follow, they actually followed the main course rather than the dessert as those making the speeches were a little nervous and really couldn’t relax until they were over and done with. The speeches were great, my father’s was probably the best (but I have to say that) and he was delighted with himself afterwards despite the slight interruption by the pageboy but this created great banter for the best man in his speech. It is something to definitely consider, either having speeches before the main, after the main or before the dinner altogether. Talk it through with your venue and those making the speeches and make a compromise.
Once dinner was complete it was upstairs to help the bride change into her evening dress which she felt she would be more comfortable in for their first dance. The newlyweds had previously taken dance classes to make this first dance even more spectacular and that it was. It was time to get the party started!!!

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