Sinead & Simon’s Irish Castle Wedding, Dromoland, Co. Clare, Ireland

I’ve always wanted to photograph a wedding in Ireland. It’s a magical part of the world steeped in Celtic myth and legend where life runs at it’s own pace often fuelled by a mix of music, Guinness and the ever-present craic. Sounds like a stereotype? Make a visit and you’ll realise why.

Sinead and Simon were married at a charming little church just down the road from Sinead’s old family home. Despite the heavy downpours the clouds broke in time for them to exit in a blast of warm spring sunshine, a perfect end to the ceremony. It was then back to the majestic Dromoland Castle for a reception in the grand banqueting hall and rounded off with an evening of celebration and dancing.

Sinead: “My dad is from County Clare and from a very young age I always wanted to go back ‘home’ to Ireland to get married. On one of our yearly trips when I was around 7 or 8 my dad took us for a drive up to Dromoland Castle to show us what a ‘proper Irish’ castle looks like. I was in such a daze with its beauty and said very loudly “I’m going to get married here one day”! I was met with a sceptical ”Ok Sinead…”. However when Simon and I got engaged I still knew I wanted it to be in Ireland (which luckily Simon was happy with) and I knew I’d like it to be in County Clare as I’ve always loved the whole area. My mum said to me “Well what about Dromoland?” It wasn’t just the beautiful castle that sold it for both me and Simon. It was the beauty of County Clare in general and the people who’s kindness and generosity are renowned. The castle offering a clay pigeon shoot for the grooms party and its golf course were a perk for Simon as well”…

As exciting as it was to be working here and to be a part of Sinead and Simon’s day it was also a highly emotional occasion. Sinead’s mum Nell had passed away only a couple of weeks earlier after battling illness. Not only was she incomprehensibly missed but she’d played a key part in the planning of the day. Nell’s touches were in abundance and with wonderful tributes paid to her in the speeches there was time for respectful acknowledgement in the midst of a day of otherwise immensely happy celebration.

Sinead: “The flowers were by Anne Romer the florist at Dromoland. Simon and I just loved Anne from the moment we first met her, she is lovely, honest and so down to earth that she soon put you in your place if you acted like a ‘bridezilla’. I knew I wanted the flowers to be colourful and simple as I didn’t want to take anything away from the location or to go over the top, that was really important to both Simon and I. Simplicity was the key for both of us. When my mum and Anne first met they talked for over 2 hours non-stop and after that first meeting I knew the floral arrangements were sorted. Blue and white Hydrangeas. They were then the theme we followed for everything else from bridesmaid dresses and grooms ties. The flowers personally for me were the centre of attention throughout the day and the most important for me as my mum had so much input to them, they even changed the colour backdrop in the room to blue to complement the floral centre pieces in each table. 

Simon and myself really couldn’t speak higher about anyone in Dromoland especially Margaret Daly the wedding co-ordinator who even after a last minute date change (which left us with 5 weeks to plan a wedding) was so calm and really went above and beyond to make us feel so, so special. The whole day now seems like a beautiful blue blur, with everything being so personal to us. The main thing we will take away is the generosity we felt from so many people. So many people helped us make the day happen from family and friends helping us in which ever way they could and for flying over last minute, or someone making a journey from Rotterdam a day before the wedding and surprising the groom on the morning.  Nothing was impossible or too much for the Dromoland staff. Even calling a truck that had left Dublin 30 mins earlier to turn around so they could put extra Guinness and wine on for the wedding – something for which I think everyone was truly grateful. xx”

Weddin at Dromoland Castle, Co. Clare, Ireland
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The reception (inc. inhouse flowers) : Dromoland Castle

Sinead’s dress: Suzanne Neville

Sinead’s shoes from Pink Paradox

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