Aoife and Richard met one night in Central London. Originally from Dublin, Aoife was living and working there at the time. She spotted a very tall man whom she liked the look of and, thanks to a bit of Dutch courage, decided to go and tell him! They got chatting and the rest, as they say, is history. Aoife left her phone in the nightclub that night by accident (yeah, right!) so it gave them a good excuse to meet up so Richard could give it back to her.
After being together for just over 3 years, we got engaged in March 2015. It definitely came as a shock. We were at Rich’s parents house having a cup of tea, just the two of us. Rich started a little speech and said he loved me and wanted to be together forever. I just thought he was in a soppy mood so I put my hand out for a ring and jokingly said, “I will,” but then he called my bluff and said, “Well, funny you should say that…” and reached for the actual ring!! He definitely caught me out!!
I was actually convinced I wanted to have a small wedding abroad but thought I should look at some Irish venues just to be certain. Ballymagarvey was only the second one we saw and anyone who has been there can see how easy it is to fall in love with it! It’s so picture-perfect but, most of all, I just think the staff are so friendly and great at what they do. I liked the privacy you get with Ballymagarvey, unlike a hotel where there are other guests around. The venue is all yours for the day and I just thought that made it feel extra special.
It’s just so overwhelming seeing all your nearest and dearest under one roof. If I had to pick a favourite moment, it would be walking down the aisle and seeing Rich there waiting. All my nerves just went away when I saw him. It’s funny because that was the part I was the most anxious about. I hated the idea of everyone staring at me as I walked up the aisle but when it happened I wasn’t even thinking of that!
I enjoyed most aspects of planning the day from start to finish – the hair, make up, flowers… I loved it all but I think the most exciting part of the planning is picking your dress. I have worked in fashion my whole life so I was really looking forward to that. I did my homework and booked appointments in a LOT of boutiques in London. My mam came over for a few days and we visited a lot of shops but I actually found my dress in the very first shop we visited, Suzanne Neville. It was really nice to take few days off and really enjoy the shopping experience.
 My top tip is get booking your suppliers ASAP. The venue, band and photographer are the most important things to book straight away, as the wedding industry is just booming at the moment so there is a 2 year waiting list for a lot of things.
Try and get all the last minute jobs done as early as you can so that in the days leading up to the wedding you can enjoy your time with family and friends instead of running around like a mad person buying last minute props or picking things up/dropping things off!
If you are getting married in Ireland, have the umbrellas at the ready, no matter what month you are getting married in!
Speeches after dinner is always a good idea. Otherwise, your guests are just thinking of their roast dinner that’s on the way instead of listening!!
Make sure on the actual day to take a few minutes just to have a drink alone together and step back from everyone and just appreciate the day! It goes so quickly so enjoy every moment! Thanks so much to Jenny for helping to make our day so special, even in torrential rain!!!! Jenny was like our unofficial wedding planner on the day. She kept us on schedule for the whole day, she made us feel really relaxed and we enjoyed our photo time so much.
 
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