The Traveler’s List of Must Haves for an Irish Destination Wedding

Planning for a destination wedding in Ireland brings excitement and anticipation, but it also raises the question: What should travelers pack for this magical adventure? To ensure you’re well-equipped for every moment of your journey, here’s a list of must haves for an Irish destination wedding:

Layers, Layers, Layers

Irish weather is famously unpredictable and you can’t let a little rain dampen your spirits! Pack layers like sweaters, light jackets, and scarves to stay cozy during outdoor ceremonies or exploring the countryside. Bring a quality raincoat or a compact umbrella to stay dry and stylish, whatever the weather.

Sturdy Shoes

From cobblestone streets to rugged cliffs, Ireland’s terrain demands durable footwear. Opt for comfortable and waterproof shoes to keep your feet happy during all your adventures.

Formal Attire

Dress to impress for the wedding ceremony and any related events. Whether it’s a black-tie affair or a casual gathering, be sure to pack appropriate attire to celebrate in style. This includes a light (or heavy) jacket for unpredictable weather and comfortable shoes for dancing.

Sun Protection, Medication and Toiletries

Yes, it does shine in Ireland! Pack sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to shield yourself from the sun’s rays, especially if you plan on exploring the lush landscapes or enjoying outdoor festivities. Don’t forget your essentials, as well! Pack any necessary medications and toiletries, as well as a basic first aid kit, to ensure a comfortable and stress-free stay.

Adapter Plug

Ireland uses a different plug type (Type G) than many other countries. Ensure you can charge your devices by bringing a universal adapter plug along for the trip. This is definitely one of the most important must haves for an Irish destination wedding.

Camera or Smartphone

With its picturesque landscapes and charming towns, Ireland is a photographer’s dream. Capture every magical moment with a camera or smartphone to cherish for years to come.

Travel Insurance

Peace of mind is priceless. Consider purchasing travel insurance to protect yourself against unexpected events like flight cancellations or medical emergencies.

Cash and Cards

While credit and debit cards are widely accepted, it’s always a good idea to carry some cash for smaller purchases or in case you encounter businesses that don’t accept cards.

Sense of Adventure

Above all, bring an open heart and a sense of adventure. Embrace the beauty, culture, and hospitality of Ireland as you celebrate love in one of the most enchanting destinations on Earth.

Whether you’re a bride, groom, or guest, preparing for an Irish celebration requires thoughtful consideration of the unpredictable weather, rugged landscapes, and cultural experiences that await. By providing your guests with this packing list, you’ll help ensure that they’re well-prepared for your destination wedding in Ireland and can fully enjoy the adventure!

Ps. Are you planning your destination wedding in Ireland? Fabulous! Be sure to find more Destination Wedding Trends and inspiration here.

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Images by Brosnan Photographic 

Love at Adare Manor: Chris and Lucy’s Real Irish Wedding

When Christopher Lawlor and Lucy Corrigan matched on Bumble in 2019, neither one of them had any idea of the epic love story they were beginning, nor the fact that it would end in a brilliant Irish wedding at Adare Manor. With incredibly busy professional lives in New York City (Lucy is a lawyer and Chris is an entrepreneur and co-founder of an AI infrastructure company), it took months before they were able to meet for their first date.

When it finally happened, the two met at a wine bar (Compagnie du Vins Surnaturels) and immediately lost track of time, talking about everything from food to music to family. Their relationship took off and the two began to enjoy dates all over the city (many to see the New York Philharmonic).

Suddenly, the new couple found themselves in a city completely halted by Covid. When remote work became mandatory, Chris and Lucy made the decision to travel to Philadelphia to visit Chris’s parents “for two weeks”, unaware that two weeks would turn into five months! As soon as the restrictions lifted, it was time for Chris to “meet the parents” in Lucy’s hometown of Dublin. When all family and friends were introduced and all approvals were met, Chris took Lucy to Park City, Utah where she was met with the ultimate relationship test: three months of ski season. Lucy passed with flying colors and Chris proposed a year later, on a beach, Lucy’s much preferred location.

When I met with Lucy and Chris, it became clear that it was Lucy’s desire to share the beauty and warmth of her home country with all of their combined loved ones. Lucy said this about choosing Adare Manor: “We chose Adare for two reasons. The first is we genuinely think that it’s one of the best hotels we’ve ever stayed at and the second is… we wanted an Irish village where people could show up and all be in one place, close together.” With guests coming from all over the world, Lucy and Chris said they loved nothing more than the idea of their friends and family bumping into each other on the streets of Adare Village.

In the same spirit, Lucy and Chris wanted to cultivate an environment of reunion and laughter, creating memories their guests would keep for a lifetime. With everyone coming together, friends and family from both sides and from different countries, the couple wanted the atmosphere to be a mix of both formal and casual, to go from black tie to full Philadelphia Eagles attire within 24-hours (a hilarious moment that actually happened). Lucy said: “We could have easily gotten married at City Hall, but the opportunity to have all of the people we love come together in one room was too good to pass up. The vibe across the three days was about providing the space, the time, and the drinks for people to see friends and family they don’t normally get to see.”

Though there were many fashionable moments throughout the three day wedding celebration, when the time came to walk down the aisle, the bride wore an Elie Saab gown (that she fell in love with during a serendipitous try-on at Elizabeth Taylor’s old townhouse off 5th avenue!) and Chris wore a Saman Amel tuxedo with a La Bowtique bowtie.

With the vows completed, the new husband and wife exited the ceremony, walking down the aisle to the iconic soundtrack of Star Wars. The reception was brilliant, with everyone out on the dancefloor, including Lucy’s 91-year-old grandfather! Beautiful speeches were given, wedding crashers were escorted from the party by loyal friends, and a wedding cake made out of wheels of cheese (created by Lucy’s favourite cheesemonger) was enjoyed by all.

As a wedding planner, it is a dream to work with such a fun-loving, adventurous and beautiful couple as Chris and Lucy. It was an absolute pleasure to spend time creating a space where Dublin and Philadelphia could come together in an iconic celebration of Chris, Lucy, friends, family, love and cheese.

 

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Event Planner: Tara Fay | Venue: Adare Manor|  Photography: Greg Finck | Engagement Rings and Wedding Bands: Zameer Kassam | Bride’s Rehearsal Dinner Dress: Zuhair Murad | Bride’s Rehearsal Dinner & Wedding Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Groom’s Rehearsal Dinner Jacket: J. Mueser | Groom’s Rehearsal Dinner Trousers: Ralph Lauren | Groom’s Rehearsal Dinner Shoes: Magnanni | Brides Wedding Dress: Elie Saab | Bride’s Second Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Groom’s Wedding Tuxedo: Saman Amel | Groom’s Wedding Shoes: To Boot New York | Groom’s Wedding Bowtie: La Bowtique |

Aimee & Adam’s Ashford Castle Wedding

Long before Aimee and Adam shared their first dance as husband and wife during their enchanting Ashford Castle wedding, they were teenagers meeting for the first time at Theatre Club in Dublin. The two playfully competed over who was more flexible (Aimee won) and an instant friendship blossomed, followed by romance, when the two began dating a couple years later. From there, Aimee and Adam navigated life: college, new jobs, new friends, their “dog child”, and travelling the world. They grew up together; it only made sense to grow old together, too.

So, at a view point between Adam’s family cabin and Ashford Castle in County Mayo, overlooking Lough Na Fooey, Adam caught Aimee off guard when he asked a very important question. After 11 years together, Adam and Aimee were finally engaged and they knew exactly where they wanted to host their big day.

In the 1960’s, Adam’s grandfather bought a cottage in Joyce Country for his family to spend some time away from the city. Adam’s fondest childhood memories centre around the cottage, and when Aimee was introduced to the area she fell in love with the beauty of County Mayo and was thrilled to learn she had family connections there, as well! “Ashford Castle represents the history and beauty of this area,” says Aimee. “It was an easy decision to get married in this stunning venue.” And just like that, the date was chosen, the invites were sent, and shortly after, the day arrived!

One of Aimee’s favourite memories of the day was eating breakfast, relaxing and getting ready with her girls before the ceremony. It was a special time of bonding and toasting the day to come. When it was time to get ready, each bridesmaid wore a dress from Covet.

Yet another easy decision was the time of year the couple wanted to say their vows. “Autumn is our favourite time of year,” says Aimee. Flowers in every autumnal colour adorned the wedding, bridesmaids wore gorgeous dresses to match their bouquets, and the entrance to the ceremony was even decorated with fall foliage and gourds.

 

As the ceremony grew closer, Aimee was ready. “I wasn’t nervous at all. I knew everything was being taken care of,” Aimee says. “Tara was able to get to know our personalities, our likes and dislikes, our values… and produce a wedding that was even better than our wildest dreams.” At St Mary’s Church, an historic church just off the castle grounds, guests were gathering and preparing for Adam and Aimee’s walks down the aisle.

One of Adam’s favourite memories from the day was watching Aimee walk down the aisle. His second favourite memory was their first dance.

The groom and groomsmen got their suits from Louis Copeland & Sons. Inside each suit, Adam and Aimee had created personalised designs to match each groomsmen. Inside Adam’s suit were bikes to represent his love of cycling.

With the ceremony complete, Aimee and Adam moved on to the reception where they were a special surprise was in store. “A friend of the family surprised us with waiters who transformed into opera singers midway through dinner,” says Aimee. “We were so shocked, but it was absolutely brilliant and amazing to be surprised at your own wedding!”

Boasting a surprise of their own, each guest found a personalised picture and note waiting for them at their seat in The George V Dining Room. “Watching them find and seeing their reactions was really special,” says Aimee.

 

With two full time jobs and the inability to spend every extra moment planning a wedding, Aimee and Adam say they knew from the start they wanted to hire a wedding planner. “Wedding planning is such a daunting task, without a planner we wouldn’t have known where to start,” says Aimee. “Our wedding day was one of the most important days in not only our lives, but the lives of our immediate families and we wanted it to be the best it could possibly be for everyone involved.”

Something that warms this planner’s heart? Aimee and Adam say there is nothing they would have done differently. “From going on a run to shake off the nerves first thing in the morning, to bringing our dog with us, to hiring the most incredible vendors,” says Aimee, “There is nothing we wouldn’t do exactly as we did it.”

From the incredibly grounds of Ashford Castle to the reception surprises to the very special love between Adam and Aimee, this won’t be a wedding I soon forget. I was honoured to plan such a special day and wish you two the very best of luck in life (and on your honeymoon in Kenya and the Seychelles)!

Enchanted as I am by this incredible event at Ashford Castle? Learn everything you need to know here: Ashford Castle Wedding Venue: A Complete Guide

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Event Planner: Tara Fay | Venue: Ashford Castle |  Photography: Peter Carvill Photography| Videography: Dream Catcher Productions| Invitations: Sarah O’Dea | Groomswear: Louis Copeland | Bridesmaid Dresses: Covet | Bridal Makeup: Ashley O’Rourke | Bridal Hair: David Cashman | Flowers: Shop the Garden | DJ: Tommy Elliott | Wedding String Ensemble: D-Strings |

The Warming of the Ring Ceremony

Often, I am asked by my lovely couples how they can incorporate Irish culture and tradition into their wedding day. One of my favourite answers is the Warming of the Ring Ceremony. Recently, I was honoured to be interviewed by The Knot in regards to this centuries-old Irish wedding tradition.

What is it?

The Warming of the Ring Ceremony is a strongly symbolic tradition that includes everyone in attendance. Each ring is held (whether in the box or out of the box) by every attending friend and family member. Guests are encouraged to speak well wishes, pray, or internally focus on some loving intentions for the couple. In this way, the rings are ‘warmed’ with love before they end up on the fingers of the newlyweds.

How does it work?

There are a couple different ways I’ve seen the Warming of the Ring Ceremony preformed.

Typically, there is an officiant with a script for each different version. In the first, the officiant meets the guests as they arrive and offers them the rings. Before they take their seats, the officiant asks each attendee to ‘warm the rings’ with their intentions for the couple.

In the second version, the tradition takes place during the wedding ceremony. In this case, the officiant asks that before exchanging, the rings are passed around to each guest. Personally, I like this version the best. The physical warming of the rings carries such a beautiful sentiment.

How can you make it yours?

For your loved ones who cannot be in attendance, I always suggest adding a personal item of theirs: like jewelry, a linen or lace hanky to pass around with the rings. Personally, I think it is more intimate to pass the rings around without a box to make the ‘warming ceremony’ even more literal. As each guest physically warms the ring with their hands, they infuse even more warmth by way of loving thoughts and wishes. In the past, we’ve read poetry or scripture as the rings are passed to each attending guest, making these moments even more sentimental and sweet.

Are you interested in incorporating the Warming of the Rings Ceremony into your wedding day? Read my interview on The Knot or get in touch!

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Image by Barry McCall

Pantone Colour of the Year: 2024 Wedding Ideas

Pantone has selected the colour of 2024 and they’ve gone with warmth for the new year. Pantone 13-1024, also known as Peach Fuzz, is a gentle mix of oranges and pinks that creates a warm peach tone. There are a thousand ways to incorporate the colour into your big day, but here are a few ideas on how to use the Pantone colour of the year in your wedding décor.

Florals and Lighting

Florals are always a great way to add pops of colour into your wedding day and lighting just enhances every tone. You can opt for an all peach fuzz bouquet like the one above or mix in a few subtle whites and greens to make the colour really stand out.

A touch of this orange-pink hue also makes for a great floral centrepiece. Couple these stunning displays with warm lighting, or even a gently tinted light to enhance the colour, and your venue is sure to wow!

Table Runners

A table runner can be any texture you desire, and it is a perfect way to weave the colour of the year into the details of your big day. Whether you opt for silk, satin, cotton, or any other fabric, peach fuzz is going to be an easy find in the new year.

Take your décor one step further with a table runner made completely of florals!

Bridal Party Attire

We can’t talk about colour without addressing bridal party attire! One of the most essential pieces of designing your dream day is the bridal party, and the most important people in a bride’s life will be front and centre with her throughout the ceremony.

Nothing will say “the colour of the day is peach fuzz” quite like a bridal party all adorned in the gentle tone. It may be easiest to purchase the same outfit for every bridesmaid to keep the colour cohesive, but if you want to have different designs make sure to start with one and colour match from there.

Embroidered Linens

Want to include the colour of 2024 in a subtle way or even in the smallest details of the day? Embroidered linens are a great touch if you’re looking for subtle, or even if you want to have the colour included in the little pieces of décor.

Tip: Choose a base colour like white or off-white and have the embroidery done in Pantone 13-1024 for an elegant look.

Candles and Cakes

Another centrepiece of any wedding décor is the cake, and with it, the candles across the tables. One way to include the warm peach tone is like in the cake above, having a one-tone cake with texture as the accent to make it pop.

If you aren’t fond of the one-tone approach, you can choose a base colour to act as the main hue of the cake and opt for peachy florals or other decorations to make the dessert pop.

Whether you go all in with the Pantone colour of the year, or opt to have it as a secondary accent tone for your big day, the results are bound to be stunning. I personally can’t wait to continue to use the gorgeous warm colour in the 2024 wedding season!

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Images by Unikeye, Ivana Patarcic, and Studio Brown

Unforgettable Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on Your Wedding

Embracing the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day on your wedding day is a charming and unique way to infuse a touch of Irish magic into your celebration of love. Whether you have Irish roots or simply appreciate the festive atmosphere, here are some delightful ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on your wedding day.

Wear a Touch of Green

Start the celebration by incorporating green into your wedding attire. A subtle green sash, tie, or even emerald accessories for the bride and groom can add a touch of Irish charm without overpowering the overall aesthetic.

Lucky Charms for the Bouquet

Attach a small, meaningful Irish charm to your wedding bouquet for an extra dash of luck. Symbols like the shamrock, horseshoe, or Claddagh ring can serve as beautiful and sentimental accents. Click here for a little guide to lucky symbols at Irish weddings!

Irish Folk Music

Set the mood with a live band or playlist featuring traditional Irish folk music. The sounds of fiddles, tin whistles, and bodhráns will transport your guests to the Emerald Isle and create an upbeat atmosphere for dancing.

Traditional Irish Musicians
Engage Ireland at Adare Manor

 

Irish-Inspired Cuisine

Give a nod to Irish cuisine in your wedding menu. Consider including traditional dishes like Irish stew, soda bread, or even a playful twist with green-themed desserts. Your guests will appreciate the culinary journey and the festive flavours.

Irish Toasts

Incorporate Irish toasts into your wedding speeches. Raise a glass to love, luck, and laughter with a heartfelt Irish blessing. It’s a meaningful way to connect with the cultural richness of St. Patrick’s Day.

Whiskey Tasting Station

Create a whiskey tasting station for your guests to enjoy during the reception. Include a selection of Irish whiskeys and provide tasting notes. This interactive element adds a sophisticated touch and pays homage to Ireland’s rich whiskey heritage.

Celtic Knots

Symbolize the intertwining of your lives with Celtic knot decorations. Whether incorporated into the wedding invitations, cake design, or table settings, the intricate and timeless knots represent eternal love and unity.

Irish Dance Performance

Surprise and delight your guests with an Irish dance performance. Professional dancers or even a dance troupe can provide a lively and entertaining show, making your wedding celebration truly unforgettable.

Green Wedding Favours

Send your guests home with a little piece of Ireland by choosing green-themed wedding favours. Consider personalized shamrock keychains, Irish-themed candles, or even miniature bottles of Irish whiskey.

Gift bags for guests
Crisps and afters

Photo Booth Fun

Set up a St. Patrick’s Day-themed photo booth complete with props like shamrocks and and Irish flags. Encourage your guests to snap pictures to create lasting memories.

By infusing these St. Patrick’s Day elements into your wedding celebration, you’ll create a day filled with luck, love, and laughter. May your marriage be as joyful and enduring as the Irish spirit that inspires this delightful celebration! Sláinte to a lifetime of happiness!

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Images by Story of Eve , Arte de Vie, Carla Ten Eyck  Christina Brosnan and Eric Kelley