A waterside wedding was on the cards for couple Edel and Colm. The gorgeous surrounds of Castle Leslie provided them with just that. Top photographer, Paula McManus was the only woman to capture Edel and Colm's beautiful wedding. Their wedding photos really speak for themselves.
Having dated for six years before tying the knot, Edel and Colm’s 14-month engagement gave them lots of time to plan their dream day. Choosing St Patrick’s in Ballymacnab for their ceremony, followed by a reception in the gorgeous surrounds of Castle Leslie, the pair enjoyed the chilly October day, staying local in the north of the country. However, the proposal took place at the opposite end of Ireland. “The proposal happened down at Connors Pass on the Dingle Peninsula in Co Kerry, then we went on to The Europe Hotel in Killarney for the celebrations,” Edel says.
Castle Leslie in winter was the ideal place for Edel and Colm to enjoy their first evening as Mr and Mrs, with the cosy firelight providing a warm backdrop for their celebrations. “The venue was amazing, it’s quite local to my home, about a 20-minute drive. The castle oozes character and history. As we got married in October the fires were all lit and it made it so atmospheric, I also added lots of candles to give it a warm inviting feel. The wedding reception was in a marquee attached to the castle which I loved, gorgeous draped walls and ceilings. We added a fairy light canopy on the ceiling of the marquee which really set it off. The grounds of the castle are exceptional, with a view of the lake from the marquee.”
When it came to the organisation, Edel took it all in her stride and enjoyed the process, which isn’t something every couple would have the pleasure of experiencing! “Planning the wedding was exciting!” says Edel. “I got the main things booked right away as we only had a 14-month engagement which did restrict us a little with choice regarding suppliers as lots had been booked up. Nonetheless, we got everything we wanted booked. I found the whole planning process enjoyable.”
Budgeting was a challenge, however, as it is for so many. The temptation is always there to go a bit mad with little additions, the couple told us. “Budgeting for the wedding was one of the harder parts, there are so many things you can get or add to your wedding that it’s easy to get carried away. But once we established what we wanted we were able to work it from there. We didn’t get a lot of extras but we did add some of our own touches to make it all the more special.”
Edel took a risk and opted to get her dress made for her. She couldn’t find something to suit in any shop, so enlisted the help of a dress designer. “For me, the hard part was deciding on a dress. I couldn’t find what I wanted in any of the boutiques. I ended up considering getting it made, something which I’d never envisaged doing. When I went to Una Rodden in Belfast she immediately got what I was looking for. The end result was absolutely amazing! The process was exciting but also a little nerve-wracking at times. I knew that I wouldn't get to see the finished dress until very close to our wedding date. But overall I enjoyed the experience and definitely wouldn’t change how I did it.”
On the big day itself, all thankfully went to plan and the couple made memories to last a lifetime. They told us: “The day itself was perfect we had a ball from start to finish - everything went so well and we couldn’t have hoped for a better day. We loved having all our friends and family there to celebrate with us.”
Their sage advice to couples, having themselves gone through the planning process and pulling off a perfect big day? “In the week or two before the wedding, there can be a lot to do. So, in our experience, we would advise having as much ticked off the list as early as possible. You'll have more time to relax and enjoy!”