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Our dedicated Wedding Team will be happy to assist you in planning your perfect Wedding Day Wedding Packages from


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In this issue CONTENTS

Hello Limerick Brides Welcome to the third issue of Brides of Limerick. We are becoming pros at making real life stories from Limerick brides come to life on the pages of this magazine. Each issue keeps getting bigger and better and we anticipate continued success as more brides are buying the magazine and more vendors are climbing on board to accommodate the growing needs of local couples about to tie the knot.


A Road Map to Your Big Day – What are the essential wedding bits that need to be done asap and what can you leave for down the road


Splurge or Save – Limerick brides share their big and small spends. What should you spend a big chunk of your wedding budget on and what should you not blow your budget on


Pretty in Pink – our inspiration page for your summer wedding


Honeymoon Make Up – MakeUp Artist Susan Fox gives us tips on what kind of makeup to bring on your honeymoon

Some of our regular advertisers answered many of your burning questions such as, what suit colour is most popular with grooms (answered by Dermot Noonan of Esquire Formal Menswear) and, what sweets are most popular with couples (answered by Nichole Kelly of Be Sweet Candy).


Flower Power – Limerick florists show off some of their artistic designs with floral arrangements and wedding day bouquets

Trevor, our resident style guru, talks summer suits for the groom and Amy O’Regan tells us why having a hen party at Limerick Racecourse is a real winner.

A LOCAL FOCUS 22-23 A Limerick fireman marries a Cork beauty and look who/what came to surprise them on their big day 31

Limerick photographer David Lane gives us a glimpse of working a wedding


Amy Feran talks post wedding blues and some tips on how to work through it


An intimate civil ceremony at the Woodlands, Adare


Engagements stories and plans for the future

For this, our summer issue, we wanted to shed a little light on some of Limerick’s wonderful florists. We all appreciate the hard work and dedication that goes into making the perfect bouquet for a bride so we thought it only fit to display some of these pieces of art on pages 58-62. Drawing from the wonderful pool of talent we have in Limerick city and county we pulled together a colour (pink) inspiration page based on what’s available locally. We chose baby pink for this issue and have plans moving forward to have numerous inspiration pages. Local photographer Paul Mullins did a wonderful job capturing the wedding of Jenny and John Cox (pages 34-35) and thanks to Paul’s ability to document precious moments we have a front cover that will stand the test of time.

And the best part – we are GIVING AWAY an amazing prize – a five-star luxurious stay at a fabulous Dublin hotel and two tickets to see Dirty Dancing the musical. See page 79 for entry details. And that’s just the tip of the ice-berg ladies and gents. Grab a cuppa and settle in for the night because once you pick up this issue you won’t be able to put it down. Happy planning everyone! Make sure to send us your wedding pictures. Thank you Limerick April Drew Founding Executive Editor

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF April Drew ASSISTANT EDITORS Carly Collins and Freya Tücks GRAPHIC DESIGNER Orla Gilbourne MARKETING AND SALES (085) 8015278 ADDRESS 58 Mulcaire Manor, Newport, Co. Tipperary DISTRIBUTION EM News Distribution, Dublin PRINTERS Cube Printing Ltd, Ballysimon, Limerick

FRONT COVER BRIDE Jenny Coll (Cox) and her beautiful daughter Millie PHOTOGRAPHER Paul Mullins of Paul Mullins Photography


Weddings It’s All About You


Grainne Histon Denis Noonan Photos courtesy of Dermot Culhane A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Grainne Histon, 27, is a social care worker. She hails from Cappagh but has been living with Denis in Ballingarry for the last five years. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Denis Noonan, 31, is from Granagh. He is a van driver for DGD papers in Limerick. The newlyweds are currently building a house in Granagh. THE MEET November 2005 at an Aslan gig in the Highland in Newmarket. “We were unaware at the time but we were actually set up by our mutual friends Ava Moore and Neil Dunworth,” said Grainne. THE PROPOSAL On a trip to Ballyheigue, Co. Kerry on Grainne’s birthday. “I had a birthday lunch at Denis’ sister’s house. I got distracted by a bottle of wine throwing Denis’ plan off track. So on the way to Ballyheigue, Denis decided he couldn’t wait any longer and pulled the car over at the side of the road in Newcastle West and asked me to marry him.” WEDDING DATE December 28, 2013 WEDDING VENUE St. James Church Cappagh and The Devon Inn Hotel Templeglantine BRIDESMAIDS Grainne’s sister Debra, her best friend Ava and Denis’ sister Caitriona BESTMEN Denis’ brother’s Colm and Fergal and his friend Kevin PAGEBOY Denis’ nine week old godson Sean CAKE 3 tier white chocolate cigarillo cake by Paul O’Callaghan of Calso Cooks FLOWERS Danielle at Abbeyfeale Flowers INVITES Fitzsimons Printers in Ardagh Co. Limerick ENTERTAINMENT Bumble Bee Honey was the band. Video by Kiosk/photobooth, DJ Eoin O’Kelly and a Sweet Cart Grainne’s sister made for them. TRANSPORT Audi A5 PHOTOGRAPHER Dermot Culhane FIRST DANCE ‘Hungry Eyes’ from Dirty Dancing WHY THIS FIRST DANCE? Grainne loves Dirty Dancing


SONG YOU WALKED UP THE AISLE TO? ‘Next to Me’ by Emily Sande SONG YOU WALKED DOWN THE AISLE TO? ‘Marie’s Wedding’ DRESS An Ellis dress – Secora Bridal in Lisnagry. HOW MANY DRESSES DID YOU TRY ON? About 20, but found the dress in the second shop. HOW MANY GUESTS? 244 WEDDING THEME Purple ANY HICCUPS Lots of trouble with the Audi, pageboy got sick on his suit and couldn’t wear it at the wedding. FAVORITE MEMORY “If I had to pick one then it would be Denis’ speech. It was a tear jerker, he had everybody in bits.” SPECIAL TOUCHES Purple shoes and Grainne had a brooch bouquet with her grandparents wedding photos in charms on the bouquet. WHAT DID DENIS HAVE MOST INPUT IN? Lots of input in the wedding music and the band. HONEYMOON Las Vegas and St. Lucia for 15 days ADVICE FOR BRIDES PLANNING A WEDDING “Do what you want to do and not what everyone else thinks you should do, it’s your day after all.”

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Sinead Mulcahy Gary Hickey Photos courtesy of Michelle Prunty A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Sinead Mulcahy, originally from Ardagh, Co. Limerick, is now living in Kells, Co Meath. Sinead works in the Department of Agriculture in Northern Ireland. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Gary Hickey is a plumber from Kells. THE MEET Gary and Sinead met in Paris in May 2010 where they both attended the Heineken Cup Final. THE PROPOSAL While holidaying in Portugal in September 2011 Gary produced an amazing ring and asked Sinead to spend the rest of her life with him. She agreed. “He even got the ring size correct which was quite an achievement as I didn’t wear rings up until that point, he puts it down to his plumbing skills,” remembers Sinead. WEDDING DATE October 11, 2013 WEDDING VENUES Coolcappa Church and Castle Oaks Hotel, Castleconnell. BRIDESMAIDS Sinead’s sister Sorcha Mulcahy, and her friend Margaret Murphy BESTMEN Gary’s brother Alan Hickey, and his brother-in-law Padraig Muldoon CAKE Sinead’s friend Catriona Callaghan from The Bunnery in Kells made the cake. ENTERTAINMENT The wedding band were the LOLS and the DJ was Paul Prenderville TRANSPORT A sporty jag PHOTOGRAPHER Michelle Prunty from Dublin VIDEOGRAPHER Jim Liston FIRST DANCE ‘Ho-Hey’ by the Lumineers SONG YOU WALKED UP THE AISLE TO Handel’s ‘Water Music’ SONG YOU WALKED DOWN THE AISLE TO Mendelssohn’s ‘Wedding March’ THE DRESS San Patrick dress – Aphrodite Bridal, Newcastle West HOW MANY DRESSES DID YOU TRY ON 8-10 dresses HOW MANY GUESTS 120 Guests


WEDDING THEME The theme was autumnal with a hint of rugby. “The rugby theme had to be incorporated due to how we met. The rugby theme was incorporated through our wedding invitations; the tables were named after rugby stadiums and our wedding cake topper,” shared Sinead. FAVORITE MEMORY “Seeing all our family and friends as I entered the church to walk down the aisle, my father’s speech, our groomsman Padraig singing ‘Wagon Wheel’ with the band, seeing everyone out dancing and enjoying themselves.” SPECIAL TOUCHES Sinead made her own table centerpieces. “It was the only DIY part of the wedding and they didn’t turn out exactly as planned. My original design was considered a fire hazard! I named the tables after rugby stadiums we had been to and I got the church musicians (Dolmen String Quartet) to play ‘Stand Up and Fight’ during the signing of the register, needless to say it didn’t go down too well with the Leinster contingent.” GARY’S INPUT The cake and cake topper and first dance. THE HONEYMOON 5 day mini-moon in Vilamoura, Portugal. Another honeymoon planned for later this year. QUIRKY BITS The wedding invitations were made to look like a rugby ticket.



Nadine Mallon Gerard Hall Photos courtesy of Shane and Adel O’Sullivan SOSAC Photogrpahy A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Nadine Mallon, born in Limerick, grew up in Shannon Co. Clare, and is working as the production manager in the company ZAGG International in Shannon. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Gerard Hall, also born in Limerick, and raised in Shannon, is the oldest in his family and also works in Shannon. The couple now reside in Sixmilebridge. THE MEET Nadine and Gerard met in the Shannon Knights in 2006. “It wasn’t exactly love at first sight as Ger managed to nearly break my nose with his dance moves. I was carried off the dance floor covered in blood,” laughs Nadine looking back. THE PROPOSAL It happened the evening of their fifth anniversary. They had planned to go out, but Gerard cancelled on Nadine the very last minute. When he came home one hour later, Miss Mallon was sitting in her tracksuit in front of the TV very disgruntled. “He sat on the couch beside me and gave me what looked like a cook book all wrapped up. While I was opening it Ger took a tiny box out of his gym runner. By the time I could figure out what I was opening Ger was on one knee presenting me with the most beautiful three stone diamond ring. I immediately started crying and the first thing I said was ‘I hope you asked my Dad!’” The book was a wedding planner. WEDDING DATE November 11, 2013 WEDDING VENUE Castle Oaks, Castleconnell, Co. Limerick BRIDESMAIDS Nadine’s little sister and her best friend Ciara BESTMEN Gerard’s best friend Jay and Nadine’s brother Niall CAKE The Fairy Queen in Shannon. A two-tier center piece cake with two mini cakes, 12 cup cakes and 12 cake pops. ENTERTAINMENT Jack Deacon and Eadaoin Tivenan provided the church music and also sang in the hotel for the guest arrival, the band playing later was Sticky Fingers and Party Marty. TRANSPORT Mercedes and Volvo, driven by Gerard’s friends. PHOTOGRAPHER Shane and Adel O’Sullivan, SOSAC Photography, Co. Cork. FIRST DANCE ‘If I Should Fall Behind’ by Bruce Springsteen WHY THIS FIRST DANCE? Both are Bruce Springsteen Fans, “It was always going to be that one.” SONG YOU WALKED UP THE AISLE TO? ‘Winter Song’, sung by Jack and Eadaoin SONG YOU WALKED DOWN THE AISLE TO? ‘You Are The Best Thing’ by Ray La Montagne THE DRESS It was Irish designer TM Couture, bought in Amore Mio in Killaloe. HOW MANY DRESSES DID YOU TRY ON? Six different shops, countless dresses HOW MANY GUESTS? About 125 10

ANY HICCUPS “No hiccups as such bar Ger forgetting everything he needed to do on the morning of the wedding. Luckily that’s what the guys were there for!” FAVOURITE MEMORY Ger’s favourite memory is some quiet time with his new bride and their bridal party before the meal. Nadine’s favourite memory is in the church looking around when Jack and Eadaoin were singing. All the guests were singing along, and swaying from side to side. SPECIAL TOUCHES? The function room was beautifully decorated. WHAT DID GER HAVE MOST INPUT IN? The music and the honeymoon. THE HONEYMOON A trip to Malaysia. First Kuala Lumpur and then Penang. ADVICE FOR BRIDES PLANNING A WEDDING? “Try to do as much as you can as early as you can and enjoy the last couple of weeks, don’t stress about the little things, they won’t matter on the day.”

Ennistymon, County Clare Tel: 065 707 1004 Email: Web:


Ashling Quinn Robert Sheehy Photos courtesy of Lee Photography A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Ashling Quinn, 25, is a guard and hails from Mungret, Co. Limerick A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Robert Sheehy, 32, is also guard and is from Raheen, Limerick THE MEET At work in July 2009

Car by Irish Diamond Limousines

THE PROPOSAL December 2011 “I came home from work one evening to find Robert kneeling beside the Christmas tree with our two Kingcharles’ Jack & Daisy with a proposal ring,” remembers Ashling WEDDING DATE September 6, 2013 WEDDING VENUE St. Nessan’s Church, Raheen and The Radisson Blu Hotel, Limerick BRIDESMAIDS Ashling’s best friend Alison, her cousins Suzanne and Nichola, and her friend Grace BESTMEN Robert’s brother Joe, and his friend’s Denis and Michael CAKE 3 tier traditional cake – John Quinn Catering Limerick ENTERTAINMENT DJ Mickey Mac, Nenagh, and The Guests



WEDDING THEME Great Gatsby floral spring time

TRANSPORT Rolls Royce and a white stretch limo, Irish

ANY HICCUPS “I lost my brother in December 2012. That

Diamond Limousines, Limerick

was the only thing out of place,” shares Ashling.

PHOTOGRAPHER Lee Photography, Catherine Tagney, Tralee

FAVORITE MEMORY Walking up the aisle

FIRST DANCE “Friends in Time” by The Golden Horde

SPECIAL TOUCHES? Mojitos and long iced teas at the

WHY THIS FIRST DANCE? “It’s always been our song”




with Me” by Norah Jones

mass booklets, guest numbers, and music choices


THE HONEYMOON Thailand, Koh Samui, Koh Phi Phi,and

Years” by Christina Perri


THE DRESS An Elizabeth Fillmore dress from The Suite Drury


St Dublin 2

who you and your fiancé want to invite, never feel obliged to


invite anyone. It’s your day. Do it your way, you only get one

dress was the second dress I tried on”

chance. Make time on your wedding day for you and your new


husband even if it’s only half an hour.”

Reception Radisson Blu

At Springfort Hall we pride ourselves on our custom made wedding packages. Your wedding reflects your personality and your unique style, after all no two brides are the same! We will create an exclusive package to suit your personal requirements, be it a big or small wedding, simple or the wow factor, civil or traditional, same sex couples, Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter!

Springfort Hall, Mallow, Co. Cork Contact: Paul Walsh / Kieran O’Donovan T: 022 21278 E:

only 45 mins from limerick

INSIDE THE BRIDAL ROOM Photos courtesy of Poppies and Me

The personal touch

goes very far

Rugby fanatics Edelle O’Brien and David O’Connor were definitely not going to have a run of the mill kind of wedding – it wasn’t possible with these two – they ooze fun and creativity. So when they tied the knot back in October last year everything about their day was personal to who they are. Let’s roll back the years a little. Edelle, 37, met David, 30, through their gra for rugby. Edelle, a receptionist at The Limerick Strand Hotel, was a tighthead prop for the Young Munster women’s team and David, a customer service agent in UPC, was a scrum half for Richmond. They were introduced through a mutual friend and after two weeks of David trying to make his intentions known to Edelle (she finally copped on) they became a couple – a wonderful couple who both knew they were right for each other. The pair, who live in a home built in the back garden of Edelle’s parent’s house in Caherdavin Heights, are from Limerick City. They dated for a few years before David finally plucked up the courage to ask the love of his life to marry him. “I went to the website launch of Poppies and Me (our good friends and wedding photographers). I arrived home to a house in candle light. My favourite song – “Take on Me” was playing on repeat and Dave was on one knee in our kitchen asking me to ‘Take him On’. I then did an amazing knee slide across the floor, (I would love to say into his arms and make it sound all romantic) but instead landed on top of him, and cried all over him, and of course eventually said yes.” 14


The Details

Wedding Date October 26, 2013 Wedding Venue Christ the King Church, Caherdavin and Lakeside Hotel, Killaloe Bridesmaids Demelza Redmond and Paddie Kelly Bestmen Joe Ryan and Kev Moloney Cake Edelle and bridesmaid Paddie made it. It was a rugby themed cake representing Young Munster and Richmond. Entertainment Edelle’s brother Brian sang at the church and Edelle herself sang Adele’s “Make You Feel my Love” in the church too. Reception entertainment was NiteOwls and then a DJ Mr. Johnny Fortune.

It was evident to everyone who knows Edelle and Dave that their wedding wasn’t going to be an ordinary event. Edelle’s mind overflowed with ideas on how to incorporate a rugby theme into her

Photographer Sean and Kate from Poppies and Me The Dress Purchased in Belladonna Bridal in Galway

big day. She did so effortlessly (just look at the wedding cake) and

How Many Guests? 130

didn’t stop there. Edelle and Dave’s big day arrived and although it

Wedding Theme Rugby

rained heavily in the morning the skies cleared and it made for a dry day after all. They had the best day of their lives and will always have very fond memories. Edelle and Dave are now looking towards the future which looks bright. In September the happy couple are expecting their first baby.

Invites Rugby match tickets designed by Edelle’s brother Conor who works for Munster Rugby. The Honeymoon Four days in Las Vegas and seven days in Cancun Any Other Quirky Bits The newlyweds dressed as Batman and Robin the next morning and surprised all their guests at breakfast. “We said nothing to anyone it was hilarious. The hotel allowed us down the slide in the pool in the costumes too, thanks Jane!” 15


LindaCopley Declan Ryan Photos courtesy of Darren Kirwan A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Linda Copley, 29, is originally from Thomondgate and now lives in Castletroy. Linda works in Azur Restaurant and is currently pregnant with her third child. Linda and Declan already have a little girl called Hayleigh, 5, and a boy called Oisin, 20 months. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Declan Ryan, 30, is originally from St. Mary’s Park. He cares for his dad full time. THE MEET Linda and Declan are childhood sweethearts. They met at the Treaty Stone in 1998. “It was the day after Declan’s

Dress Virginia’s Bridal

15th birthday that we shared our first kiss. From then on we


were inseparable. We split up for a while to give ourselves time

FIRST DANCE ‘A Thousand Years’ by Christina Perri

to grow apart, and experience new things. It wasn’t too long


before we got caught back up in each other’s lives again and

Years’ by Christina Perri

realised our love was for life.”


THE PROPOSAL Christmas morning 2010 at the Treaty

Together’ by Jack Johnson

Stone. The couple were on their way to Linda’s parents’ house

DRESS Virginia’s Bridal

when Declan pulled in near a church and unstrapped their


daughter Hayleigh, telling her and Linda to look at the chunks

HOW MANY GUESTS? 205 plus 15 children

of ice floating down the river. “The next thing I know, he is on

WEDDING THEME Childhood sweethearts

his knees holding a box in front of him in one hand, and our

ANY HICCUPS Some rain and traffic jams

daughter’s hand in the other. He then proceeds to tell me he

FAVORITE MEMORY “Getting to the top of the aisle where

loves me, and wants to spend the rest of his life with me, and our

Dec is waiting for me. I just loved getting there. It’s taken us so

daughter, and any other children we are lucky enough to have.”

long and in that moment it was like, this is right, this is where

WEDDING DATE November 8, 2013

I’m meant to be, by his side.”

WEDDING VENUE St. Munchin’s Church, Thomondgate.

SPECIAL TOUCHES Personalised bars, coins, etc.

Reception at the Castle Oaks House Hotel


BRIDESMAIDS Jamie, Gillian, Amanda, Carol and Liz

“I probably didn’t listen but he was there for everything”

BESTMEN Brian, Kenneth, Thomas, David and Sean

THE HONEYMOON Mini-moon in Killarney and a trip to Egypt

CAKE Danes Bakery, Limerick

in January for one week.

ENTERTAINMENT Orla Walsh for the church, Escapade was


the band.

too wrapped up in it and to enjoy the day. There is no point in

TRANSPORT Diamond Limos

stressing about it. It’s about the two of you and not everyone


else so suit yourself where big decisions are to be made.”

VIDEOGRAPHER Monster Productions


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Venue Castletory Park Hotel


EmmaOMahony Sharif Salem Photos courtesy of Morning Star Photography A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Emma O’Mahony, from Limerick, is working as a sales advisor. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Sharif Salem, from Newport Co. Tipperary, is working as a bar supervisor in a Limerick hotel. THE MEET Emma and Sharif met through socialising and some mutual friends. THE PROPOSAL New Year’s Eve 2012. “Just after the clock struck 12 Sharif got down on his knee and popped the question. “It was a fantastic start to 2013. We celebrated into the early hours with all our family so it was brilliant to have them all there to share the special moment,” said Emma. WEDDING DATE October 18, 2013. WEDDING VENUE Civil Ceremony in the Castletroy Park Hotel followed by an amazing reception. TELL US ABOUT YOUR BIG DAY AT THE CASTLETROY PARK HOTEL “The Castletroy Park was an amazing venue to get married in, from all the planning to the big day they looked after our every need.” remembers Emma. “We had a great day and night there. They offer diverse packages to suit all couples.” 10 to 15 of Emma and Sharif’s guests stayed at the Castletroy Park, and reported back that their rooms were beautiful and breakfast wasn’t bad either. “They provide a personal touch, and the friendliness of all staff and management was wonderful.” BRIDESMAIDS Emma’s sisters Jamie and Kellie and Sharif’s sister Amerah. FLOWERGIRLS Emma’s little cousins Robyn and Lily. BESTMEN Sharif’s brother Tamer, Emma’s brother Tony and his friend Brian. CAKE Chocolate biscuit cake, lemon sponge and carrot cake, made by Confetti Cakes. FLOWERS Ring O Roses ENTERTAINMENT Drive and a DJ later. PHOTOGRAPHER Shauna Kennedy of Morning Star FIRST DANCE ‘Close your Eyes’ by Michael Buble SONG YOU WALKED UP THE AISLE TO? The instrumental version of ‘A Thousand Years’ by the Piano Guys SONG YOU WALKED DOWN THE AISLE TO? ‘Greatest Day’ by Take That THE DRESS Enzoani dress from the ‘Beautiful’ collection, bought in Amore Mio in Killaloe. HOW MANY DRESSES DID YOU TRY ON? About 7-8 dresses HOW MANY GUESTS? 82 WEDDING THEME Autumnal theme FAVOURITE MEMORY “My favourite memory was our first dance, Sharif’s favourite was turning to see me at the top of the aisle.” 18

SPECIAL TOUCHES Table plan tree instead of normal table plan WHAT DID SHARIF HAVE MOST INPUT IN? He helped out a lot, picked out the suits. THE HONEYMOON Las Vegas ADVICE FOR BRIDES PLANNING A WEDDING? “Make some time during the day to have some alone time, as you won’t see much of one another with socialising and hosting.” ANY OTHER BITS? Fingerprint Tree

Flowers Ring O’Roses

Weddings at

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where excellence meets style

Situated adjacent to Killarney National Park, The Brehon is the perfect

The Brehon banqueting suite can cater for up to 180 while the private

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From the moment you enter the hotel’s marble reception area, you

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ate gourmet dishes that will amaze your guests. The Brehon also offers

feel welcome and providing superior quality and award-winning service.

special facilities to cater for the wedding party both before and after the

Accolades include being graded Ireland’s leading Four Star Hotel by Fáilte

big day. Private dining options are available, as well as private areas to

Ireland and receiving a Gold Medal Award from Hotel and Catering Review.

socialise and enjoy drinks, on the day before and day after the wedding. Wedding packages include: red carpet and champagne reception; table centre pieces of fresh cut roses or lilies; personalised menu cards; complimentary bridal suite for your wedding night with champagne breakfast; special accommodation rates for wedding guests and the personal attention of our dedicated wedding coordinator Heather Chandler. The Brehon is also licensed to host civil ceremonies in various suites throughout the hotel. For more information visit The Brehon Hotel, Killarney, Co. Kerry. Tel 064 6630700.



NoreenCoughlan Patrick O’Mahony Photos courtesy of Kevin Murphy Photography A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Noreen Coughlan, 33, is from Feohanagh, Co. Limerick. Noreen is a special needs assistant. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Patrick O’ Mahony, 39, is from Roscrea, Co. Tipperary. The newlyweds live in Feohanagh. THE MEET They were introduced by friends in the bad winter of 2010. Their first date was rearranged three times due to inclement weather conditions but it happened eventually. THE PROPOSAL They were on the search for a missing cat in the building site of their house. Patrick got down on one knee in front of what is now the kitchen window. After firstly responding with “are you serious” Noreen then said “YES of course”. WEDDING DATE October 18, 2013 WEDDING VENUES The Church of the Immaculate Conception, Newcastle West, followed by a reception at The Radisson Blu Hotel Limerick. BRIDESMAIDS Elaine Ryan, Helen Kilroy, Lorraine Carroll, Suzanne Kirby, Sarah McEnery, and Emma Noonan. BESTMEN Jason Lynch, Stuart O’Mahony, James Gleeson,

SPECIAL TOUCHES Personalised hangers made for the

Michael Lynch, Michael England and James Lynch.

bridesmaids, Handmade props at the tables, photobooth,

FLOWERGIRLS Khya Lynch, Aoife Carroll, Chloe Carroll,

decorated jars with sweets and advice cards for the guests

Aoife Kirkbride, Roisin Kirkbride and Nicole Carroll

to fill in.

PAGEBOYS Bobby Lynch and Thomas Ryan

THE HONEYMOON Scotland and UK.

CAKE The cakes were made by Noreen’s mother with a little


helping hand from the bride.

as organised as possible. Ask people to help. If you are doing

ENTERTAINMENT An all-night DJ by Explosive DJs

any DIY try and get as much done as early as possible and

PHOTOGRAPHER Kevin Murphy Photography

research everything. Decide what the things are that you will

VIDEO Brendan Reidy Videography

not compromise on and budget accordingly. Invest in a good

FIRST DANCE Some Surprise by Cake Sale

photographer and videographer.

THE DRESS More to Love Bridal in Newcastle West (which

ANYTHING ELSE Noreen’s goddaughter and her sisters gave

has since closed).

her a charm to put her dad’s photo in so she could attach it to


her bouquet. It meant so much to her.

WEDDING THEME Books, paper and DIY “It started because

ANY QUIRKY BITS All the groomsmen wore grey converse

Pat has bad hay fever and I am not really bothered with flowers

and superman socks (purchased from Penneys). Noreen wore

so I decided to make my own Origami bouquets, button holes

purple converse.

etc. Some of the flowers were made using old romantic novels, they were a big hit and I’ve since had orders to make more of them for other brides. Keeping with the book theme we made book invites with different “chapters”, postcard RSVPs, pew ends made from book pages, and table names were all various Nicholas Sparks books.” FAVORITE MEMORY Pat says “getting the note that Noreen had given one of the flowergirls for him to read as the bridesmaids were walking up the aisle and turning around when Noreen was at the top of the aisle.”



Capture those behind the scenes moments on you big day



INSIDE THE BRIDAL ROOM Photos courtesy of Poppies and Me

Jennifer Moore Kevin Buckley A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Jennifer Moore, a Clonakilty beauty, currently works for the government and now lives in Limerick with her husband Kevin. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Kevin Buckley, a Limerick native, is one of the city’s finest – a firefighter. THE MEET Jennifer and Kevin met in the place where dreams are made – Nancy Blakes – in 2008. “Jen was on a work night out for her birthday, I was on a work night out also. We met through mutual friends. I got Jen’s number and contacted her a few days later. We went on our first date on Halloween. We went to Bella Italia, where Jen spilled Lasagna all over herself, I knew then she was ‘the one’” tells Kevin. THE PROPOSAL In New York City on a four day shopping trip. Kevin shares the story in detail – “I had it planned for a few months before and did my research as to where to buy the ring. I picked Central Park to pop the question. I said I would wing the exact spot there, but had the Loeb boathouse picked as the general spot. On the morning I was going to propose I rang Jen’s dad back home to ask for permission of course. There was great excitement in Clon. 22

INSIDE THE BRIDAL ROOM SONG JEN WALKED DOWN THE AISLE TO ‘Better Together’ – Jack Johnson THE DRESS Bride’s of Eire, Clonakilty – Jen tried on three dresses. HOW MANY GUESTS 190 WEDDING THEME Fun ANY HICCUPS On Jen’s way to the church a massive wasp decided to make his way into the car. Crisis was averted when the driver saved the day by pulling over and “sorting out” the wasp. FAVORITE MEMORY For Kevin it was turning around at the top of the alter seeing his bride, and for Jen it was walking up the aisle. For both of them being able to relax and let their hair down after the speeches was priceless. SPECIAL TOUCHES Kevin’s dad spent months leading up to the wedding hand-making a stunning and detailed candy cart. Jen’s brother, Peter, handmade rustic direction signs and arrows for the church and venue. Their photographers, Poppies and Me, also provided a quirky photobooth for them. “As I am a firefighter in Limerick I had hoped to get a fire engine to the wedding. Due to the distance factor from Limerick it wasn’t

“We went walking down 5th Avenue and stopped for coffee and cake (Magnolia Bakery). I suggested we take our coffees and head to Central Park. Once in Central Park, the nerves were really building. We went towards the boathouse and found it was closed for the day. My heart really started to race at this stage. We had done a LOT of walking by now, our coffees had gone cold. Luckily, nearby, we found the Conservatory Water Lake, where locals sail small radio control boats. It was a really lovely quiet peaceful and romantic spot so we sat and enjoyed cold coffee and buns! At this stage I got down on one knee and popped the question (with a charm that Jen had been eyeing up for a long time – the ring would come later). There were tears of course! To my relief, Jen said yes and the phone calls started. We then got a taxi straight to the Diamond District where Haniken’s Jewelers looked after us as they do for many other Irish couples.” WEDDING DATE September 21, 2013 WEDDING VENUES St. Fachtna’s Church, Rosscarbery. Co. Cork and The Celtic Ross Hotel, Rosscarbery, Co. Cork BRIDESMAIDS Aisling Murphy, Lisa Buckley, Mary O’Mahoney, Karen Treacy BESTMEN Declan Buckley, Keith Coughlan, Kevin Curtin, Tim O’Sullivan ENTERTAINMENT The Lollygaggers (Aka Final Touch) TRANSPORT A vintage Rolls Royce from friends of Jen’s parents PHOTOGRAPHER Poppies & Me FIRST DANCE ‘Your Song’ – Ellie Goulding SONG JEN WALKED UP THE AISLE TO ‘Feels Like Home’

possible, or so I thought! The lads and ladies on my shift, Green Watch Group 3, organised a surprise for me on the morning of the wedding – they brought our Vintage “Dennis F2 TI” Fire Engine all the way from Limerick on the back of a low loader truck. “While I was having my last pint as a single man outside Nolan’s pub in Rosscarbery, up the hill came 20 firefighters in full dress uniform hanging off the Engine, bells ringing, lights going! It really was a massive surprise and one I am eternally grateful to the lads for organising, “Just Married” signs and all,” recalls Kevin very fondly. Jen also got a huge surprise on the wedding morning. While getting ready, several cars began beeping and speeding up the driveway. As her home is a very quiet spot, this was most unusual, even on the morning of her wedding. As everyone went outside to investigate, who popped out of a shiny black 4x4 jeep, the one and only rugby legend Tommy Bowe. Jen is Tommy’s biggest fan … for his rugby skills of course. Jen’s brother’s girlfriend Jane had heard Tommy was on a tour of West Cork through a friend of a friend, and calling in a favour or two, she organised for Tommy to make an appearance … while she was still in her dressing gown! THE HONEYMOON A “mini mooning” around Cork and Kerry in a few posh hotels, before spending a week in the fabulous 5-star Princess Yaiza Resort in Playa Blanca, Lanzarote. They’re planning a bigger honeymoon this summer. ADVICE FOR BRIDES PLANNING A WEDDING “Many people say it and it is a cliché but it really is the best day of your life. You’ll never have so many people you know and love in the same place at the same time, all there to wish you both the very best. It can be overwhelming after a few hours, so most definitely try to get 20 minutes alone before the meal starts,” said Kevin. “Also, take a few days break before going on honeymoon – neither of us ever felt tiredness like the days after – so really enjoy the honeymoon, its best to be fresh for travelling.” ANYTHING ELSE Since the wedding, Kevin and Jen have launched a new wedding business, Sunshine Candy Carts (www. They have been inundated with bookings to hire their hand made candy cart for weddings. Since launching, they have added a second cart to meet the demand, a rotating Ferrero Heart and Ferrero Pyramid and a quirky photo booth. 23


A bride and her girls


2 1. Ashling Quinn with her bridesmaids Suzanne Browne, Alison Burke, Nichola Quinn, & Grace Quirke September 6, 2013 Reception Radisson Blu Limerick Photo courtesy of Lee Photography


2. Cora Mason with her bridesmaids Elaine Kane, Mary Mason, Saoirse & Nadine Moroney August 3, 2013 Reception The Strand Hotel, Limerick Photo courtesy of Aileen Kennedy 3. Nicola Kennedy with her bridesmaids Caroline Feighery & Amanda Foote & flowergirl Jayde Kennedy September 6, 2013 Reception County Arms Hotel, Birr, Co. Offaly Photo courtesy of Selina O’Meara



4. Mary Fitzgerald (well her leg) with bridesmaids Siobhan Fitzgerald, Cathy Fitzgerald, Linda Dennehy & Mags Lacey March 7, 2014 Reception Falls Hotel and Spa Ennistymon, Co. Clare Photo courtesy of a family friend 5. Aoife McCarthy with her bridesmaids Karen McCarthy, Regina McCarthy & Marie Finn June 14, 2013 Reception Dundrum House Hotel, Co. Tipperary Photo courtesy of Darren Kirwan 6. Debbie Hannon with her bridesmaids Aoife Benson Hannon (daughter), Niamh Walsh & Samantha O’Doherty July 26, 2013 Reception Oakwood Arms Hotel, Shannon, Co. Clare Photo courtesy of Martin Bedford

6 24


6. Linda Copley with her bridesmaids Jamie Copley, Gillian Smith, Amanda Bedford, Carol Hogan & Liz Long November 8, 2013 Reception Castle Oaks House Hotel, Castleconnell Photo courtesy of Darren Kirwan


Ask the Expert: Michael Phelan of PVP Digital


Sefton House 15, Thomas Street, Limerick Tel: 061 319441 Mobile: 086 842 5060 Email:

Appointments during normal hours are desirable but not always necessary at Sefton House Bridal so why don’t you call in or ring us on 061 319441 or 086 842 5060

T 069 68853 E Limelight Wedding Stationery

Orla Gilbourne 26

069 68853 or 087 9890555

Stockists of Dessy NewYork Bridesmaid Dresses Destination Wedding Dresses EveningWear Debs Dresses from Tony Bowls & Pia Michi We also do Fresh Flowers & Wedding Flowers Kates Kloset, Askeaton, Co. Limerick T: 061 392711 M: 087 274 4942 Open Tuesday to Saturday. Contact Caroline Downes


11 years of happiness

leads to a magical December wedding Photos courtesy of Cardam Photography 11-years ago Don Donnelly and Garreth O’Mahony first laid eyes on each other. They initially met online and got on so well they decided to meet in person to see if anything would come out of this blossoming friendship. They met for dinner and have had many meals together since. Don, who works for Tesco, had lived in many exotic locations such as Spain, Geneva, Saudi Arabia, Japan and the U.S. before he settled in Ireland. Garreth is a self-employed IT contractor. They keep themselves busy – so busy in fact they recently set up a business together called LegalEase which will provide accounting services to the legal profession. Ever the romantic and spontaneous person, Don told Garreth last year to pack his bags, he was taking him to Turkey on holidays. “He gave me 10 hours notice before our flight,” laughs Garreth looking back. “After a wonderful six days where we visited the Gates of Hell in Ephesus, we packed up and were waiting on the bus to bring us to the airport. With five minutes to go Don proposed to me, saying that as we had visited the gates of hell we could go anywhere. I said ‘Yes’ immediately. Well it was either that or a difficult six hour journey home.” 28

All loved up back in Ireland plans quickly fell into place to get married. They booked Fallons Bar and Restaurant in Kilcullen, Co. Kildare for a small and cozy December wedding. “We wanted an intimate occasion so we invited 30 guests, Don’s and my family and some close friends,” said Garreth. “We wanted the occasion to be informal, almost as if we invited the guests to our house for dinner.” Don and Garreth decided upon kilts as their wedding attire. “We wore kilts in our family colours, Red for the Donnelly’s and Green for the O’Mahony’s. This allowed us to stand out as the married couple and yes nothing was worn under the kilts, it was all in perfect working order.” Through the ceremony there was three very personal songs sung. They entered to “If I Was to Fall in Love” by Christy Hennessey – it was Garreth’s late father’s favourite song. “It’s Getting Better” by Mama Cass was played during the ceremony, a song which tells the story of their relationship and “Something Inside So Strong” by Labi Sifre was played at the end, a song which portrays the struggle for gay rights. “During the reception we decided to play all of our favourite songs on an iPod in the background. After the reception Don’s sister-in-law sang two songs for us,” tells Garreth.

Although there was no set theme for the big day it being Christmas they happened upon a natural one. “We incorporated many Christmas elements into the day. We had crackers for each of the guests, we gave a tree bauble as a wedding favour and had Christmas stockings for each of the children.” Adding his own personal touch to the wedding Garreth designed their wedding cake. It was an angel sponge cake with a melon curd filling and a meringue butter cream frosting. “I gave the recipe to Alice’s restaurant in Naas who made the cake for us the day before the ceremony. We coated the frosting in edible glitter in the colours of the gay pride flag and separated the colours using Jelly Beans (Don’s favourite). Eibhlin created two figurines for the top dressed in Kilts and Magda did a wonderful job decorating the cake.” And that wasn’t the only personal touches. Instead of a mass booklet they created a ceremony souvenir with pictures of them growing up and of all the guests who were at the wedding. “We included snippets of the ceremony and songs that we played. We also created activity booklets for the children to keep them occupied during the afters. We gave them a camera and they had to photograph different things during the reception. If they photographed each one they won a prize.” Garreth describes his wedding to Don as “magical.”

The Details Photographer Damian from Cardam Photography Who officiated the ceremony Tommy Gorman performed the ceremony Favourite memories of the day “No one memory, but the whole day was special. I was afraid that the day would go by in a blur of activity but it didn’t. The speeches were excellent, funny, poignant, personal and quick.” Honeymoon They flew to New York two days after the wedding. They spent a few days there before travelling onwards to spend Christmas with Don’s sister in Colorado. They then spent a week in Santo Domingo in fabulous winter sun shine. First dance No First dance. We wanted an informal atmosphere where nobody felt pressurised to dance. Anything unique “When we first started dating we bought a bottle of whiskey which we kept. We gave each member of our wedding party a whiskey tankard as a thank you gift and filled it with the 10 year old whiskey.” 29


Happily Ever After



2 1. Mairéad Murphy & Félim Mullane Photo courtesy of Bridie Murphy Photography November 2, 2013 Church Holy Trinity Church, Templeglantine, Co. Limerick Reception Ballyroe Heights Hotel, Tralee

2. Jackie Caplice & Jer Spillane Photo courtesy of Murat Terzi October 26, 2013 Church St. Joseph’s Church, Kilbehenny Reception Kilcoran Lodge Hotel, Cahir, Co. Tipperary Flowers Eibhlin Walsh Boland of Wild Heather Freelance Florist 3. Debbie Benson & John Hannon Photo courtesy of Martin Bedford July 26, 2013 Church St. Mary Magdalene’s Church, Monaleen Reception Oakwood Arms Hotel, Shannon Wedding Dress Seroca Bridal



4. Mary Fitzgerald & Mike Healy Photo courtesy of a family friend March 7, 2014 Church St. Columba’s Church, Clouna, Ennistymon, Co. Clare Reception The Falls Hotel and Spa, Ennistymon Band The Marvels 5. Miriam O’Dwyer & Dan Cowling Photo courtesy of Mateusz Grobelny Moonlight Studio Photography December 21, 2013 Church Templebraiden Church, Pallasgreen Reception Castletroy Park Hotel Wedding Dress Amore Mio, Killaloe 6. Laura Kerr & Damien Bolger Photo courtesy of Munster Images November 30, 2013 Venue Humanist Ceremony Reception Temple Gate Hotel, Ennis Wedding Dress Benjamin Roberts Dress from Mio Amore, Killaloe

6 30


7. Elizabeth O’Callaghan-Askin & Gerard O’Donovan Photo courtesy of Memory Lane Photography June 21, 2013 Church St. Mary’s Church, Limerick Reception Castle Oaks House Hotel Wedding Dress Virginia’s Bridal


What I’ve learned as a Wedding By David Lane, Memory Lane Photography Recently Limerick was hit by the worst floods in generations. Media subsequently


reported that many older couples say that

I have also found that planning when and where photography fits

although their home was destroyed they

with the couple’s timetable results in an album that truly reflects the

had managed to save their wedding album.

wedding. Sometimes clients chosen photo location or reception venue is

This sparked a range of emotions in me, most

far from the wedding service and as a result travel time can eat into

significantly, the responsibility that I have as a

their day. I try to work with a couple in finding an alternative location

wedding photographer to document such an

or perhaps changing the service/reception time if possible. I have

important day for people. The old cliché “a

had situations where we have only fifteen minutes for photography, in

picture speaks a thousand words” cannot

these instances we decide on the “must have images” to be captured

be undervalued as it can hold so many memories for the person who

within this timeframe. Most couples like to have some group and family

treasures it.

photographs. Gathering up a group of people can be time consuming so I always advise the bride and groom prior to the wedding to inform the

The planning and organising of a wedding should finish the

guests/family members if, and, when they will be needed for photographs.

day before, rather than worrying about the hiccups that might occur. A bride who embraces her day, enjoys the company of her

Finally, once the wedding day is over I hear many of my couples say that

family and friends, will get the most out of her day. So whether

it all flew by too quickly even though the organisation and preparation

the wedding car doesn’t start, the bride arrives at the church before the

took months. Some say they would like to have been guests rather than

groom, it rains all day in the middle of August, or the best man forgets

hosts at their own wedding or wish they could go back and enjoy it all

the wedding rings, these events don’t ruin your day. The people around

over again! For this reason I always encourage people to look at the full

you will iron out these little mishaps if needs be. If the groom puts the

range of display solutions and albums. It might seem convenient or cost

wedding ring on the wrong hand you will look back and laugh for years

effective to get a disk of images but I have met couples years after their

to come. The couple will see that their family and friends are not there

wedding day who tell me that their disk is in a drawer or a folder on the

to judge them on the day; they are there to support them in making it a

computer or tablet. A wedding album or photo slide show is really the

wedding that will never be forgotten.

only way to relive those visual memories for generations to come so I always advise people to budget accordingly.

I have noticed that sometimes the groom can get overlooked on the big day despite being very involved in the planning of his own wedding. I have learned that spending time with both the bride and groom to find out what is important to them individually can help to inform and influence the photographs I take. For example photographs of the boy’s chilling in the barber shop, the dart’s player hitting the target, or the vintage car enthusiast polishing the chrome trimmings of his own wedding car, help to balance the bride’s preparation photographs.

Very few people enjoy having their photograph taken, myself included! I have learned how to spot when someone is anxious about the photography and as standard I now offer a complimentary engagement/pre wedding session. The experience of being in front of the lens and having a professional photographer present helps to ease tensions and guide the couple through the awkward parts. This shoot is about the photography whereas the wedding day is all about the couple. 31


The post

Wedding Blues

It’s the most exciting time in your life. Celebrating the engagement, designing the band, picking the dress, ‘making a day of it’ for all of these tasks, choosing the venue, finalising the guest list, tasting the menu, ripping pages from Brides of Limerick all over your fridge for ideas, obsessing on all those finer details like the colour of the ribbons around the bouquets. The excitement is building, there are not enough hours in the day, the emails are flying, the old contacts and colleagues are coming out of the woodwork, asking how the planning is going. Friends are excited, family members are preparing for it as their own big event. Everyone is excited, positive, focused on you, afterall – it’s all about you!

Months turn into weeks and that nervous excitement is about to explode. There are not enough hours in the day, the big day comes, it flies by, the honeymoon is relaxing, and then you’re home, everyone congratulates you, it’s back to work and … it’s over! I don’t mean to burst your bubble future brides, but the post wedding anti-climax bites. The days are longer, your inbox is emptier, there’s nothing left to plan, nothing left to dream about, nothing left to get excited about … except maybe the photos, which may then make you even more depressed that it’s over! But fear not. There are plenty of women who powered on through the ‘post wedding blues’ and have come out the other side. Here are my Do’s and Don’t’s. Bottom line: enjoy every second of the table arrangements and the hair rehearsal and the planning, because it comes to a swift end. Amy Feran


Stay fit. You’re possibly in the best shape of your life because of this wedding. Don’t lose momentum. Take up a new exercise or sport. Try to get started within three weeks after you get home from the honeymoon. Plan a girl’s weekend. You’re probably a great event planner now. Put that energy to action and organise a trip with your girlfriends to thank them for all the help and attention they’ve given you. Make the trip about them. Visit family. You’ve probably been so wrapped up in your own plans for the last year, you didn’t visit Aunt Peggy as much as you could have. Plus, Aunty Peggy wants to hear all about your big day again, so you can relive it without burning the ears off your best friend again. Focus on your career. Let’s face it – work took a back seat for a while, didn’t it? Access to a computer and planning a wedding don’t lead to a productive work day. Time to get back in the saddle and focus on your long term goals. Enjoy being married. That’s what all this hoopla was for. Starting the rest of your life together with your main man. Enjoy it.


Bring any electronic devices on the honeymoon. Don’t look at your emails or Facebook or anything. This is your special time to relax, sleep, and spend quality time with your new husband. Your phone will be hopping, but resist temptation and look at it when you get home. Then is the right time to look at friend’s photos from your big day, and get back in touch with everyone. It’ll prolong that fabulous high from your big event. Obsess over planning other weddings. Don’t jump all over your newly engaged friend or relative, but do offer help if they want it. Don’t live vicariously through someone else going through this special time. It’s special because it only happens once in a lifetime, and it’s uniquely yours. How much fun would it be arranging other people’s flowers? Not much. Plan a baby just to have some other special occasion to look forward to. This sounds extreme, but many people focus immediately on getting pregnant when they start getting bored after the wedding. So predictable! If that’s what you really want, great, but those few years as a married couple before a baby comes along are special. Actually dwell on this. It’s a slight dip in levels of excitement for a few weeks after a fantastic high. Some people secretly feel relief that life returns to a normal calm, and that they can look back with fondness on that time. Amy married the man of her dreams Max Feil in Santa Barbara, California last September.

Cakes by Catriona O’Dea

w t 087 0975981 e twitter @Catshomebakes Spring/Summer 2014 Cake Wedding Offer Free Box of Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies when you order Wedding Cake. So book today! Book by August to avail of this offer



Find me on Facebook PaulMullinsPhotography


Photos courtesy of Paul Mullins

Jenny Coll John Cox A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Jenny Coll is 36 A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM John Cox is 40 A BIT ABOUT THE COUPLE Jenny and John have been together more than half their lives. They have two beautiful children together, Charlie and Millie. THE PROPOSAL After 20 years together the last thing Jenny expected over a delicious meal at the Jasmine restaurant in Limerick was a proposal. “I was in total shock. I was not expecting it at all and the Jasmine is our favourite restaurant,” shared Jenny, proprietor of Limerick’s newest wine bar, The Copper Room. WEDDING DATE May 31, 2013 WEDDING VENUE Malton Hotel, Killarney BRIDESMAIDS Jenny’s sisters, Julie (her twin) and Sarah BESTMEN David O’Neil and Malcolm Clien TRANSPORT A friend drove them in his vintage automobile FLOWERS Ring O’Roses “Our flowers were beautiful.” CAKE Confetti Cakes Ireland – “It was a three tier cake and a real crowd pleaser” INVITES I Do Stationery 34

Flowers by Ring O’ Roses


Cake by Confetti Cakes Ireland

FIRST DANCE “Woman” by John Lennon – John chose it – “It was a surprise to me. John wanted the dance to be about me, it was very beautiful.” THE DRESS La Sposa from Aibheil, Adare. “It was the fifth dress I tried on. It really wasn’t the style I had in my mind going out there, but I fell in love with it straight away when I put it on.” HOW MANY GUESTS? 70 “We had a small wedding with just family and close friends.” FAVOURITE MEMORY “My favourite memory was that the kids were there with us on our wedding day. They got to see it all happen.” HONEYMOON Family-moon to Portugal. “We had a wonderful time.” ANY ADVICE FOR BRIDES “If I had any advice for brides planning a wedding, I would just say enjoy it, don’t let yourself get stressed out.”

“Limerick photographer Paul Mullins was our photographer. He was such a pleasure to work with on the day and we had no stress at all while taking our pictures.” shared Jenny



Print up a big sheet of paper with an image of the bride and groom and ask everyone to sign it at the reception – if you’re brave ask for some wedding advice too. Also ask the hotel to print out your table names and seating chart. Most hotels won’t charge for this.

Bring out the family heirlooms – borrow your grandmother’s veil or great grandmother’s brooch. Not only does it save you money it also makes the day extra special.

If you are the emotional type then leave a hand written note for your guests at every place setting – it’s super sweet and well worth the effort.

A month or two before the wedding collect flowers. Hang them in the hot-press to dry, and when you’re done you can use them on your wedding day as confetti for guests to throw when you come out of the church.

One for the creative brides! Mail a square of fabric to each of your guests with the wedding invite. Ask them to write a message on it. When you get it back with the reply card stitch them all together (or ask the best sewer in the family to) and hang it up at your wedding! We love this idea!!! 36

Ask your friend with the nicest (and the most practical car – you don’t want to be squashed into an uber-trendy mini-cooper) to drive you to the church




Announce your engagement

2 3

A Roadmap to

Set a budget and stick to it. May need to enlist the help of a wedding planner (


Choose a ceremony and reception venue (check out our reception venues throughout the magazine)

8 4

Decide on a wedding cake (Facebook Confetti Cakes Ireland)

Choose your music


Choose your bridal party

6 5 38

Book your honeymoon (

Create your guest list

Research, meet, and book all wedding vendors (check out our flower special for ideas on pages 58 & 60)

Shop for your wedding dress (check out some sample dresses from local suppliers on pages 72&73)

your big day 11

18 Choose the grooms wedding attire (


Get married

16 12

Begin all your beauty treatments (check out our beauty and hair stylists throughout the magazine)

Decide on a wedding car (

15 13

Live a long and happy life togethert

Send out the invitations (

Go on your Hen/Stag (


Choose the right wedding lingerie (Fabulous Fit Lingerie FB)



“The dress was my big splurge, I won’t divulge the exact cost but it was between €3,500 and €4,500. It really was all about the dress for me. I saved on table flowers and favours (we just didn’t do them).” Fiona, Raheen “We invested good money in our band and it paid off literally. The dance floor was packed all night and everyone for weeks after were saying how great they were.” Sean and Orla, Limerick City “We splurged on a candy cart and a photobooth and we saved on our flowers and cake. We wanted the day to be about having fun,” Michelle, Askeaton “We spent big on our honeymoon. It was a trip that took in three weeks in Australia, one in New Zealand and one in Thailand. We are both teachers so it wasn’t a problem during the summer. I saved on my dress – bought it in a sample sale at Virginia’s in Limerick and I borrowed my dad’s BMW for our wedding car,” Aoife, Castletroy “Hiring a brilliant photographer and videographer for me was one of the most important things we paid out for. Both our album and DVD came out amazing. Instead of having a band we hired a DJ to play for the whole time and it worked out great.” Mags, Abbeyfeale “The food and the band were the most important spend for us. We sent e-vites instead of paper invitations, my sister-in-law made a brooch bouquet for me and I bought the bridesmaid dresses on e-bay.” Charlene, Roxboro “The hotel was our biggest splurge. We got married in Adare Manor a few years ago but our save was on the guest list – to be able to have the wedding we always dreamt of we only invited immediate family and closest friends so in total we had 38 people and it was the perfect day,” Orla, Boher


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save you money on

By Carrie Wilkinson Does DIY save you money, or end up costing you more? When

your wedding?

considering DIY, the approach that will save you the most money is DIT (Do It Together). Enlist bridesmaids, groomsmen, parents and

Guest Book: We skipped the traditional guestbook in favour of a

siblings. I guarantee you some things will be a lot cheaper, you just need

beautiful display. My dad made me a wedding tree from a branch we

to break everything down and see what suits your budget and needs.

found in the garden, which he glued onto a ceramic tile from the Euro shop. He then spray painted this white. I decorated it with pearls and

I would say only do the DIY things you actually like to do, things you are

crystals, and bought wooden hearts for the guests to sign and hang

excited about doing. That way even if it doesn’t end up being a whole

on the tree. I glued purple ribbon onto the hearts to hang them. We

lot cheaper, you’ll have had a good time doing it and be excited about

loved the idea of asking guests to write their specific wishes or advice

the result being more personal. Also, if you are unsure, you can price

for you on the hearts rather than simply signing their names and writing

ready-made items ahead of time and compare them to the cost of just

a generic congratulatory message. After the wedding we collected the

buying supplies to make it.

hearts in a nice personalised chest, which I ordered on, for the perfect keepsake. The chest cost us €66 in total which included the wooden hearts. Table Names: Our table names were based on a Father Ted characters. I found pictures of all of the characters online and added quotes to these. The hotel offered to print these and provided stands so this didn’t cost us anything! Also, the hotel was happy to do a seating plan for the guests to follow at no extra cost. Entertainment: Rather than spending money on a DJ after the band, we made a playlist of all our favourite songs and played this using the sound system provided by one of our friends. This left us with a bit of

The Invitations: I ordered most of my invitation supplies from

extra cash, so we treated our guests to a fire breathing display by two Leah was very helpful with any

Limerick guys Rg Allen rg.allen.58@facebook. Our guests were very

queries I had and even offered me free gold envelopes that she had

impressed, and the guys travelled to Killarney from Limerick for a very

that would fit the invitations I ordered as I was unsure on sizes. Although

reasonable price!

I didn’t make a huge saving on these, they were so personal that it was worth the time spent making them. Even though my theme was

There are many other ways you can save using DIY, depending on what

purple and white, I saved a huge amount of money by ordering plain

your skills and talents are, but this is what worked for us. One final thing

cream pocket-fold invites as these were on sale with 70% off. The white

– enjoy it! When your fingers are super-glued together and up to your

ones were full price. I stuck a purple card with a cream overlay inside

neck in tissue paper and ribbon, remember it will all be worth it – no one

and decorated with embellishments and cream ribbon. Roughly my

else will have a wedding like yours!

invitations worked out at €1.80 per invite (including printing, glue and cutting supplies). I used card in the same colour to print my reply cards- which cost about €40. The Wedding Favours: Now of course you don’t need favours. You just don’t. But if you want to go the favour route – DIY definitely is the way to go. I ordered white pillow boxes (also a couple of Disney theme boxes for the kids), customised purple ribbon and flowers to stay within my colour scheme, and filled them with sweets from Thornton’s. These also doubled as name places by simply attaching white luggage tags and handwriting the guest’s names. Roughly the favours worked out at about €0.68 per favour. I ordered most things from Pew Decorations: My heart was set on lavender for these, so I bought dried lavender in a local wholesaler and tied these in bunches with purple ribbon and some of the leftover purple flowers from my wedding favours. I also bought wicker hearts in Penney’s and spray painted them white. We used these afterwards to add to the table candelabras provided by the hotel to bring the theme together. In total, I spent roughly €65 for these. 42

Come see us live on April 27 at Clancy’s Bar, Bruff “Because we had people from several countries at our New Year’s Eve wedding I was a little apprehensive about getting a band that could cater to everyone’s taste but I have to say Handipak surpassed our expectations and we had the best night ever,” Declan and Sandra, Dromoland Castle.

“Handipack were just wonderful to work with and extremely accommodating. We gave them our first dance at very short notice and it was no bother to them. The dance floor was packed all night,” Johnathan and Emma, Bunratty Castle Hotel.

Avail of our 20% off special offer for weddings taking place in January and February 2015 call today for more details

“We are big rugby fanatics and on the day of our wedding Ireland won the Six Nations. Handipak caught on straight away to the excitement and played Ireland’s Call before the first dance. It lifted the house,” Dave, Strand Hotel.

“A band for all occassions”

Contact Paddy T: 062 53287 M: 087 8199720 E: Find us on Facebook

The perfect place to plan your big day

Rathkeale House Hotel Rathkeale, Co. Limerick Phone + 353 (0) 69 63333 Fax + 353 (0) 69 63300 Email

Wedding Photographers with the Bride and Groom in mind Why not call us today Bernadette 087 287 7326 or James 087 656 8277 E: W:

We also offer a wide range of other photographic services ranging from Christenings, Holy Communions, Confirmations etc. 43



You can’t get more ladylike than this delicate hue – take it or leave it – we love dusty pink! Check out some of Limerick’s local vendors who can help you add this dusting to your big day. Chauffer driven rose colour wedding ride – available for hire for your big day from Diamond Limousines Limerick

Smitten in pink – Maids to Measure bridesmaid dress – available at Ivory Lane Fashions Tasteful flower girl dresses in baby pink – available at Marette’s (next door to Dance City)

Summer wedding invitation available from Limelight Wedding Stationery

Summer bouquets to brighten up any wedding – custom made by Cerise Flowers and Events

A delicious three-tier wedding cake – custom made to order at Confetti Cakes Ireland

Summer sweet treats – Candy cart and goodies available to hire from Be Sweet Candy 44


Ask the Expert: Nichole Kelly When did you start your business? The initial idea for the business came after I organised a sweet table for my own wedding. It was a great success so things just kind of went from there. The business itself has been up and running just under a year and has really taken off. What new products have you introduced recently? I honestly never imagined it would have expanded so fast and become so popular. Initially when I started I only provided sweet tables and sweet trees. But now our range is so much larger. We have added a stunning white Candy Cart, a 13-tier Ferrero Rocher pyramid, and a popcorn machine. Now we also make delicious chocolate lollipops, and do a wide range of sweets with personalised labels, these include chocolate bars, after dinner mints, mini love-heart rolls, and lollipops. What is a popular favourite treat? Our brides and grooms definitely love retro sweets, black jacks, rosey apples, bonbons, and milk teeth always top of the list. Do you set up and take down at the venue? Yes I arrive to the venue the morning of the wedding and set up. I then return that evening at a time agreed with the bride and groom to clear up.

of the

Be Sweet Candy I also box up any remaining sweets for the bride and groom to enjoy themselves afterwards. At what point in the wedding do people usually dip into the sweet table? From my experience guest usually dive right in as soon as they see the sweeties. This works as a great ice breaker and the guests start chatting away amongst themselves. They often chat about their favourite childhood sweets. It always puts people in a good mood and sets a great tone for the rest of the evening. What is the average price of hiring a sweet cart? The candy cart starts at only 150 euro, the Ferrero pyramid including 230 sweets is 150 euro. The popcorn machine including attendant to serve your guests starts at 100 euro and favours start from just 50 cent. So no matter what the budget is we will work with the bride and groom to ensure their day is extra sweet and doesn’t break the bank. Also thanks to the continued support we are receiving we have lots of plans to expand even more in the upcoming year, so watch this space.

We will work with the bride and groom to design a package that suits their needs and budget!

The Be Sweet Candy Contact Nichole Kelly T: 087 787 3697 Email: Facebook: The Be Sweet Candy



Absolute Hotel Limerick’s ultimate urban wedding venue Feel the energy of Limerick city in design-led surroundings that will complement your day in style and sophistication. The Absolute Hotel is modern yet comfortable, it’s striking yet secure, and it’s different but its better. From a team with a big heart, ‘high five’ on making the first steps to your happy ever after. Polished from start to finish, the Absolute has packages that are creative yet affordable, food that hits the spot, and an attention to detail that will make your wedding slick as you are stylish.

A temple of beauty for your wedding A truly unique wedding venue, The Great Hall at the Temple Gate Hotel provides a stunning room for your wedding reception – originally built as a church in 1886 and since refurbished to offer space for up to 220 wedding guests. The Great Hall still has many of its original features including stained glass windows, vaulted ceiling with oak beams and hand painted batiks. The Temple Gate Hotel hosts just one wedding per day, guaranteeing you, and your guests a memorable occasion with delicious AA Rosette winning food expertly prepared to ensure you have the quality of food you expect on your Wedding Day.

You can lock in your love at the Absolute Hotel with an idea inspired from the Parisian Pont des Arts footbridge over the Seine. People visit to attach ‘love padlocks’ illustrated with their initials and throw away the key. You too can make the ultimate expression of your love and hang a padlock on the railings of the bridge outside the Absolute Hotel and commit your love to each other. The Temple Gate Hotel offers a range of carefully selected wedding packages starting from just €39 per person for

Contact your wedding stylist Yvonne O’Looney E: or call now to make your appointment 061 463610 For you, relish the planning, enjoy the engagement, and remember the reason you are here is for love after all.

the Gold package which includes a Champagne red carpet arrival for the bridal party as well as punch or mulled wine, tea & coffee on arrival for guests, chair covers and sash, centre piece floral displays, personalised menu cards. The choice of a 5 course menu including specially selected house wines, an evening buffet, reduced accommodation rates for your guests, a romantic candlelit dinner for two for the bride and groom in Legends restaurant on their first anniversary, as well as the help and experience from the Hotel’s dedicated wedding coordinator are also included. The most popular all inclusive package is the Platinum package for €49 per person which offers all of the above and an array of added extras.

A special thanks to Escape Spa & Vanilla Browns Salon for hair and makeup. Escape is located in the Absolute Hotel is a large contemporary salon, ideal for large parties wanting a little pampering on the wedding morning. Photography by Eoin McCarthy. Dress supplied by Ivory lane and the suit is courtesy of Esquire, 8 Roches Street, Limerick.

For further details please contact Geraldine Minogue Sales & Events Manager T: 065 6823300 E: W:

With boundless possibilities come endless questions, so you can trust our wedding stylist to guide you in the right direction.


Bunratty Castle Hotel where dream weddings come to life A staple for Limerick weddings, Bunratty Castle Hotel has it all. Since its banqueting suite overhaul, the hotel oozes fresh sophistication yet maintains tradition. Located in the heart of the historic village of Bunratty in Co. Clare, this hotel offers stunning style and unmatched service. The hotel has all the special amenities and warm hospitality you want for you and your guests and wedding party. Attention to detail is at the heart of any celebration and at Bunratty Castle Hotel we pride ourselves in being able to work around various budgets and expectations to create a bespoke experience. We have a choice of unique rooms for civil ceremonies which allows you to enjoy all of the grandeur of this location in Bunratty. The ambience and personal service of the whole team at this hotel will enhance any reception. One of our experienced wedding coordinators will assist you with all aspects of planning. With only one wedding per day, the professional staff devote all their time and attention to couples ensuring that the day is truly special for all involved. The hotel, recently nominated by former brides, for the MR & MRS Brides choice awards 2014, is only a stone’s throw away from Bunratty Castle making it easily accessible for those picture perfect wedding day shots.

And let’s not forget the AngSana Spa – a place for the bride and her bridal party to unwind before and after her big day. Do not miss it. Take the first step towards making the most important day of your life truly unforgettable. Book your dream wedding now at the Bunratty Castle Hotel today. Contact our dedicated wedding team, David, Marguerite or Heather T: 061 478 700 E: W:

Ask the Expert: Sharon Crawford of Fabulous Fit Lingerie What sizes does Fabulous Fit Lingerie cater for? We have a large selection of lingerie catering for all sizes from a 28-48 back sizes in bras. Size Sm-6XL in shape wear – no size is too big or too small.

Fabulous Fit Lingerie

When should I purchase my lingerie for my wedding? It would be great to have your lingerie before purchasing your dress as it gives a great idea as to what your dress will look like with a good silhouette but don’t worry if you have your dress, there is no problem sorting it out. Just bring your dress to Fabulous Fit and we’ll look after you.

Fabulous Fit Lingerie, based in Corbally, Limerick, offers a very private and comfortable environment for any of you ladies to call to.

What am I looking for in good lingerie? A good bra lifts and supports the bust giving great shape while shape wear smooth’s the body taking away any lumps and bumps. We recommend not to wear shape wear too tight as you want to be comfortable on your big day.

We offer one-to-one appointments so women feel at ease while trying on different styles to compliment different outfits and shapes.

Who do you cater for? We cater for all women in the bridal party – the bride, bridesmaids, mothers of the bride and groom and of course the grannies. Everyone really.

No size is too big or too small

Fabulous Fit Lingerie is based in Corbally, Limerick offering a very private and comfortable environment for any of you ladies to call to. We offer a one-to-one appointment for all making women feel comfortable while trying different styles to compliment their different outfits. Contact Sharon Crawford on 061 340 306 or 086 242 8368. E-Mail Find us on Facebook

Contact Sharon Crawford T 061 340306 or 086-2428368 E Find us on Facebook




Now booking ad spaces for our July – October issue



Competitive rates available


InsIde the BrIdal room




A romantic

vintage wedding

Photos courtesy of Paul Mullins Photography


in Limerick

The Wedding Suite

Parteen native Amy O’Riordan knew after a romantic Christmas gift four years ago that the man of her dreams, enter Alan Tierney, would be the man she would spend the rest of life with. They met in Dublin and they had an instant connection. Alan took Amy to the Wax Museum, the Light House cinema, to poetry readings in Temple Bar and many crepes and coffees were had along the way. The pair have a lot in common. They both adore French and spent hours reminiscing about their love

Hottest bridal trends now on sale in local shops

for the language on one of their first dates. And their connection doesn’t stop there. They both love classical music, art and film. Both had visited

,seiRots laeR laer ,sedirb sediRb lacol ad rieht dna

Real stoRies, Real brides, real tears local bRides and their daddys

Seoul in South Korea before they met. These two were destined to be together since birth.

why limeRick is the best city foR a hen party


Amy, a Montessori teacher for children with disabilities, spent the first few years of her professional life working as an artist and exhibiting in galleries in Dublin and Limerick, experiencing great success. Alan, a Connemara gentleman and native Irish speaker, works in financial


services in the IFSC.

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“When I first started going out with Alan, I told him it was a dream of


mine to go to Paris and see the galleries there. That Christmas Alan

suj ohw kool !degagne tog

presented me with a locked box which I brought down with me on the

look who just got engaged!

train to Limerick,” recalls Amy. Alan was all too familiar with Amy’s lack of self-control when it came to

1. San Patrick, Virginias, Limerick 2. Justin Alexander, Amore Mio, Killaloe 3. Venus Bridal, Butterfly Brides, Limerick 4. Enzoani, Diamond Bridal, Cork 5. Justin Alexander, Amore Mio, Killaloe 6. Venus Bridal, Butterfly Brides, Limerick 7. Mori Lee, Virginias, Limerick

presents so he even attached a lock with a secret code. Amy had to wait until Christmas Day for a text message with hints on how to open it. With the help of her dad Ivan, Amy finally unlocked the box and inside lay was a purple candle. A nice gesture Amy thought. 58

1 ddni.eussI gnirpS kciremiL fo sediBrides rB of Limerick Spring Issue.indd 1

Contact April today! 085 8015278 Facebook: Brides of Limerick

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Brides of Limerick Spring Issue.indd 72

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Crecora, Co. Limerick • Tel 086 8258132 • Email Confetti Cakes Ireland

Confetti Cakes Ireland, based in Limerick, is one of the leading wedding cake providers in the county. Owner Niamh Eyres creates splendid works of art to tailor the desires of her bride and groom. Based in Crecora, Niamh travels to all wedding venues the morning of the big day to set up her cake (and cupcakes if desired) and makes it her top priority that everything is left to perfection before she leaves. Niamh creates each cake individually and designs it according to the couples colour scheme and taste. She provides many flavour choices for each tier including: - Belgian Chocolate Biscuit Cake - Chocolate Fudge Cake - Raspberry & Vanilla Sponge - Lemon Sponge - Red Velvet - Carrot Cake - Black Forest - Traditional Fruit Cake - Gluten Free Niamh generally meets couples to discuss their visions and for them to do some cake tasting. She also custom makes cake toppers. To book an appointment with Niamh or just ask her a question she can be reached on or 086 825 8132 48

has it


Jennifer & Kevin Sunshine Candy Carts Ballysimon, Limerick

Tel + 353 86 3857966

Candy Carts

• Free delivery, setup & 2 attendants

Includes delivery to your venue (within 50km of Limerick City)

• Photos uploaded to online system next day

Love Package 100 Guests €275 Romance Package 150 Guests €325 Memories Package 200 Guests €375 Fairytale Package 300 Guests €425

• Photos loaded onto memory stick

4 Hour Rental €495

Fererro Rocher Heart 480 Sweets €345 290 Sweets €245

Web Email Facebook Twitter @sunshinecarts




personal civil ceremony in the Woodlands

Photos courtesy of Ian Horan Photography

Ellen O’Shea, a Caherconlish native, first laid eyes on a handsome Fedamore gent – enter Stephen Enright – at a Munster hurling


championship game in Thurles many moons ago. Little did she know

On October 19, 2013 the happy couple tied the knot in Adare in front

that a few years later when she booked her first driving lesson it would

of 200 family and friends. They were the first couple out of their group

be Stephen behind the wheel. The rest is history.

to hold a civil ceremony, and according to Stephen and Ellen it went down a treat. “The feedback was very complimentary. A lot (of guests)

The lovebirds moved in together in a home in Caherline in 2000, and

said if they were to get married all over again they would do a similar

there their family grew. Stephen, who works for Wiseplan, has two

civil wedding. Our ceremony was all about us as a couple and very

wonderful children (James and Marie), and together Ellen and Stephen

personal.” At the end of the civil ceremony their local priest, Fr. Roy

have two more beautiful boys, Jack and Conor, who gave their mom

O’Donovan, gave them both a blessing.

away on her wedding day. On February 26, 2013 Stephen proposed to Ellen on the doorstep of their home. She accepted and the planning kicked off straight away. They were both set on having a civil ceremony as opposed to a religious one and Ellen says it was the best decision they both made.


“We wanted to keep the ceremony very personal to us, to have our favourite readings, music and our own vows,” shares Ellen. “Our songs were significant to us, such as ‘The Voyage’ and ‘Bright Blue Rose’, sung by our friend Oonagh. Ciara our Bridesmaid also sang ‘Songbird’ during the ceremony. After the wedding ceremony Stephen’s uncle Lawrence played the accordion as we walked down the aisle as husband and wife. The ceremony was a talking point after the wedding.” They chose the Woodlands House Hotel in Adare because they loved it, and were so impressed with the service they received. “From the very start David Fitzgerald was amazing with details on a civil wedding, and gave us great advice,” compliments Ellen.

The Details

The Dress Kaya from the Maggies Settero collection purchased in Cameo Bridal in Kilkenny Bridesmaids Ciara Enright, Sharon McCarty and Breda Ryan Bestmen Seamus Murnane, Micheal Murnane and Derek Connaughton Flower Girl Evie McGrath O’Shaughnessy Pageboy Cillian O’Mahony Flowers The Floral Boutique Cake Confetti Cakes – Niamh Eyres Music Oonagh McMahon Fitzgerald and Larry Enright Who officiated the Ceremony? Louie Quirke of Yes I Do Ceremonies The Band Katsquire 50

Honeymoon Madrid

Reception Woodlands House Hotel

Bridal Makeup Limerick allows you to feel amazing, beautiful and at ease on the morning of your wedding, with a personalised make up service! Geraldine is on hand to add to the special occasions in your life including graduations, debs, hen parties, birthdays, anniversaries and any other special event. She offers a mobile service in the comfort and privacy of your own home and is an experienced make-up artist who prides herself on always prioritising her customer’s needs and her ability to put everyone at ease. This year has seen her travel nationally and to France for wedding appointments and she has also worked on various fashion shows including the final of the Tipperary heat of Miss Ireland. Geraldine is looking forward to 2014 and working with ‘brides to be’ and providing a service that only a bride deserves.


Geraldine Lyons T: 087 2194120 E:

Hen Parties

Geraldine has teamed up with Jacinta from Dazzle Hair Salon, right in the heart of Limerick City, to provide your hen party with the perfect start to the evening. Have your hair styled, make-up masterclass with the Bride-to-be as the model, nails painted or eyes made up and lots more besides all under the one roof! What could be easier ... different packages available to suit groups. Please contact Geraldine on 087 2194120 to discuss options and book in to get your hen night/weekend off to a great start.


The Nail Sanctuary The Nail Sanctuary Charleville, is an award winning nail salon Offering brides a dual-tailored package on their wedding day – we do call outs to the bride’s home. Our bridal experts are on hand the morning of your big day to make you feel unique and special. Susan’s Hair Salon and Jessica O’Keeffe Professional Make-Up Artistry have recently joined forces to meet the needs of the modern day bride. Together they provide a highly professional service and the bride reaps the benefits. Susan’s Hair Salon also caters for all aspects of hairdressing i.e colours and cuts.

061 412 441 40 Cecil Street, Limerick Find us both on Facebook

Treatments offered include:

Gel Nails • Acrylic Nails Luxury Manicures and Pedicures • File and Polishes Minx Nails • UV Polish Nails We use products such as Gelish, Shellac Nails and Perfect M

Main Street, Charleville, Co. Cork 063 32947 Nominated for Wedding Nail Stylist 2014 Nail Artist of the Year 2013 Recommended by Suzanne Jackson So.Sue.Me 51


Say “I do” to your Ultimate Bridal Nutrition Guide at Women’s Fitness Plus By Lorraine Hall – Head Nutritionist at Women’s Fitness First of all congrats on your big day! A gorgeous gown and

We’ll make your wedding dress look like new – just bring it to us after your big day Opening hours: 8-6.30 (Mon-Fri) 9-6.30 (Sat) Unit 2, Newtown Centre, Annacotty, Co. Limerick 061 33 99 49

diamonds can only take you so far. The true pathway to looking and feeling amazing on Your Special Day is paved by a healthy food regime and workout routine. A busy lifestyle should never deter you from reaching your ultimate goal. And during your wedding planning, your time is precious. From my previous experience of working with brides, the best advice I can give is give yourself plenty of time to get the work done. Be your first priority. Allow yourself time before the big day and more importantly enjoy your final days before becoming a married woman! I normally recommend talking to one of our highly trained nutritionists approximately six months before and get advice on where to start. I firmly believe in starting the healthy eating food plan as early as you can. Get the weight loss achieved before the hen and then we can work on giving you the healthy glowing skin, A strong shiny hair and perfect nails. I would normally aim to have you at your goal weight by roughly 6 weeks before your wedding day and place you on a maintenance food plan so you enjoy the hen, the dinner tasting and the celebrations!

Make Up Artist 086 8550437

The pre-wedding days are hectic and wanting everything to be perfect can lead to sleepless nights and poor food choices. We aim to give a food plan that is easy to include in your lifestyle and gives great results. Always remember, you are what you eat. Aim to make smart food choices like eating vegetables, fruit, whole-grains and lean proteins. In addition, a moderate amount of healthy fats and good hydration will lead to a firm and toned body. Keeping a food diary of all your meals, snacks and drinks you consume on a daily basis will keep you accountable. This weight loss tool will help you to identify your unhealthy habits and to substitute them with healthy snacks. Thirst is often disguised as hunger. A large portion of people are chronically dehydrated so it’s safe to say we could all drink more water. By hydrating and detoxing your body, you will improve energy levels and gain a feel good factor. Do you suffer from water retention, bloating and excessive weight gain? By removing sugar, white flour, fried foods and alcohol from your diet you will have a flatter stomach and better digestion. At Women’s Fitness Plus, we aim to be your support network on this journey and help you to achieve your dreams and goals. WOMEN’S GYM, Unit 8 Courtfields Shopping Centre, Raheen, Limerick. Phone 061 303 588 See back page of Brides of Limerick for more details.


Packages to suit most budgets Email Phone 085 1531498


Catherine Hickey has it all covered Catherine Hickey Make-Up Artist is a well-established Limerick based make-up artist, who has been in popular demand for the past four years by brides, debutants and many others. She has worked extensively with the Holman Lee agency on both fashion shows and television work on Ireland Am and in RSVP magazine. Catherine provides both hair and make-up. Her work has been credited by all her clients. Their testimonials can be found on her website and Facebook page. Catherine is 100% dedicated to each individual client. From the moment a bride enquires to the moment she leaves for the church for her wedding Catherine is there every step of the way. Catherine provides full bridal party packages catering for the bride, bridesmaids, flower girls and mother of the bride and groom.

Tel: 087 6323744 or 087 9023388

Due to the huge demand for her services Catherine has now decided to extend her business and recently announced that she is opening her very first salon. A complete ‘one -stop’ shop for all your hair, make-up, high quality hair extensions, nail and tanning needs. Catherine has fused a fantastic team of hair dressers, make-up artists, nail and tanning technicians together for this first of a kind salon in Limerick. The salon is due to open mid-April and will look forward to greeting clients both new and existing in her new premises in Dooradoyle. Catherine Hickey (085) 157 3188

Free Bridal Makeup Trials

Specialising in Bridal Hair Now operating a Mobile Service We go to your home the morning of your wedding and work with the bride, bridesmaids, mother of the bride and flowergirls with ease and professionalism. Book your hair trial today. Late Appointments by Request La Bella treatments include Teeth Whitening • Shellac Nails • Body Spray Tan Laser Tattoo Removal • Laser Hair Removal • Make Up Facials • Massage • Waxing

Ennis Road, Limerick Email:

Packages available, tailored to your needs, please contact Marie La Bella • Shanagolden Facebook La Bella Beauty Shanagolden

t: 069 60826 53


Make Up for your Honeymoon By Susan Fox of Susan Fox Professional Make Up Artistry

Here are a few tips for all the lucky brides heading off on the holiday of a lifetime. When it comes to packing up the cosmetic bag if you are anything like me getting down to the essentials takes a whole lot of ... packing, unpacking, packing and repacking. Us girls just don’t travel light! However after years of holidays spent applying the same few foolproof products I am happy to share with you the contents of my magical, minimal, make up bag. Sunscreen – at least factor 30. Lobster skin and the early signs of pigmentation problems is definitely not the way you want arriving home to greet everyone. Travel size cleansing wipes and a tube of moisturiser are really important to keep your skin hydrated.

The Nars Multiple in your colour of choice. I use Maui, a dusty rose shade. This product does eyes, cheeks and lips and even looks amazing as a highlighter on the collarbones. White eyeliner is fantastic for making eyes look bigger and clearer. Apply in the waterline, also particularly handy for the morning after the night before. Urban decay do a really great range of waterproof pencils. Choose your favourite colour and use for lining the eyes or smudging at the outer corners for a sultry night time eye shadow. Tint eyelashes and eye brows just before the wedding and that way a travel size mascara for the evenings will work on honeymoon. A compact powder and a small brush to apply will get rid of any unflattering shine but still allow a natural glow.

Keep your foundation lightweight and no glass bottles – who wants to deal with that hot mess when you should be relaxing.

Perfume evokes lasting memories so bring a travel size and store carefully.

A small concealer is perfect for a rogue blemish but also great for when you feel like wearing no foundation because you are looking so sun godessy but still need a tiny bit of help under the eyes.

Last on the list and sheer indulgence is a beautifully scented travel sized candle because apparently honeymoons are quite romantic! Susan is available to do your wedding 086 8074768.

Susan Fox

Professional Make Up Artistry

Ivory Lane Limerick Bridesmaid Boutique Susan Fox Professional Make Up Artistry 086 8074768 54

23 Barrington Street, Limerick T +353 85 11 888 58 W Follow us on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook Open Tuesday to Saturday 10.30am to 4.30pm (late evenings on request until 10pm)


pushes the boundaries of beauty Plush Beauty was established in 2000 by Ciara Flanagan and has been a leader in the beauty industry ever since. There have been many beauty transitions, and trends over the years and wanting to be at the forefront of the industry Ciara, and her team have always embraced such changes in the salon. The introduction of HD brows, Mink Eyelashes, Rapid Lashes, Knot Free Occasional Lashes, Airbrush Make Up, La Fast Tan, Shellac, Ilac, Threading, Hydra SK4 Facial Toning Machine, Matis Facials, Depileve Waxing and much more sets them apart from many other salons. They even have a dedicated threading and eyebrow bar. Being extremely attuned to the needs of modern day brides, Plush have a house call service available the morning of a wedding. “We are aware that Bridal Parties prefer to stay in their own homes on the morning of their wedding and have the makeup artists come to them so that’s what we do,” shared the successful proprietor. Ciara herself takes care of the house calls. She has 20 years of experience under her belt and has worked on some major Irish celebrities, including Westlife members, and several former Miss Irelands.

in Limerick

Ciara has also years of experience doing makeup for photo shoots and has personally worked with hundreds of brides. “Unlike other makeup artists I will only take one bridal party per day as I realise how special a bride’s day is. I will also stay for touch-ups after all the makeups are completed,” said Ciara. The finer details: - Minimum of four for a house call. - €60 per person – you can chose airbrushing at no extra cost. - She also provides occasional lashes on the day, lightweight and knot free (natural looking). They normally cost €25 but on the day it’s only an additional €10 on to the makeup cost. HD brows and Mink are popular among brides as brows need to be defined and lashes weightless, dramatic yet natural. - Their Hydra SK4 facial toning machine is great for mothers of the bride each session is €100 or €450 for a course of 6 and offers fantastic results. - Tailored packages for bridal parties available.



The Ultimate Wedding Party



1. Mairéad Murphy and Félim Mullane with their wedding party – Jackie Enright, Séanie Condon, Sandra Murphy-Flynn, John Mullane, Niamh Scannell, Liam Mullane, and Klara Flynn Photo courtesy of Bridie Murphy Photography 2. Emma O’Mahony and Sharif Salem with their wedding party – Jamie and Kellie O’Mahony, Amerah Salem, Tamer Salem, Tony O’Mahony and Brian Canty Photo courtesy of Shauna Kennedy, Morning Star Photography 3

3. Gráinne Histon and Denis Noonan with their wedding party – Debra Histon, Ava Moore and Caitriona Kennedy along with Colm and Fergal Noonan and Kevin Carroll Photo courtesy of Dermot Culhane Photography 4. Miriam O’Dwyer and Dan Cowling with their wedding party – Brigid Ryan, Laura Henebry, Aoife Walsh, Anne-Marie Cussen and Marie O’ Brien, Alex Cowling, Andrew Butler, Wally Watts, Martin Cregg and Joe O Dwyer Photo by Mateusz Grobelny, Moonlight Studio Photography


5 56

5. Laura Kerr and Damien Bolger with their wedding party – Abigail Thornbury, Lauren Bolger, Graham Bolger and Luke Bolger Photo by Munster Images

Remember first meeting your fiancé … the butterflies, the endless texts and calls, the spontaneous nights out … Well fancy having that feeling again one more time … We’ve got the answer!


“ Me? I’m scared of everything. I’m scared of what I saw, I’m scared of what I did, of who I am, and most of all I’m scared of walking out of this room and never

feeling the rest of my whole life the way I feel when I’m with you.” Baby


2 tickets to the classic hit show DIRTY DANCING on Saturday, July 12th at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre in Dublin + an overnight stay at a FIVE STAR DUBLIN CITY HOTEL (Bed & Breakfast) where you will live like a Queen and party like Baby! Bring your fiancé or your bestie! The choice is yours. HOW TO WIN Simply purchase the magazine and tell us what you LOVE about it – YOU’RE ENTERED ONCE INTO THE DRAW Purchase the magazine and contact/book one of the vendors from it (*terms and conditions apply) – YOU’RE ENTERED TWICE (The more vendors you contact and book the more times you are entered into the draw – contact or book four vendors and you’re entered four times). When entering please tell us the names of the vendors. EMAIL your entries to Subject line: Dirty Dancing competition. Please include your name, address and contact number A WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED ON FRIDAY, JUNE 13TH *TERMS AND CONDITIONS You must be available to travel to Dublin and attend the show on Saturday, July 12, 2014. You won’t be entered if you’ve already contacted or booked a vendor prior to purchasing the magazine. All enquiries and bookings must be after the magazine has been purchased. *You must love Dirty Dancing *You must love your fiancé *You must be engaged when you purchase this magazine



A Flowery Kind A taste of colours, styles, shapes and sizes from some of our local florists

2 3 1 5 6

1. Noreen’s Flowers 061 320 065 2. Grettals Petals 061 364 517 3 & 6. Ring O’Roses 061 411 321 4 & 5. Cerise Flowers & Events 086 1590659 7. Tiger Lillies 061 382 053





Ask the Expert: Patricia Irwin What are the most popular colours for summer weddings? This year we are seeing beautiful baby pinks with lilacs, gorgeous rich buttery shades of cream, beautiful soft pastel shades, and of course we have the bright fuchsia shades in contrast. Are brides breaking from tradition and ordering something different? With the influence of Pinterest and other global forums brides are being wowed by styles from all over the world. They may opt for the meadow look which would have a variety of up to ten different types of flowers and the bouquet combines a little of everything creating a fabulous look. They are also opting for vintage style brooch bouquets and fresh bouquets with brooch detail. A lot of the brides are incorporating sentimental pieces in these, like Grannie’s brooch or something along these lines. How many weddings have you ever had in one day? As a rule we only do three weddings over two days. But we have done three in one day when the brides or a family member are long time clients. Can you give us the cost of a sample package? The cost to include a bridal bouquet, 2 bridesmaids bouquets, flower girl, groom, 2 groomsmen, both immediate families, 2 large

Blossom and Bloom with

of Ring O’Roses pedestals and an and an altar arrangement with candles would be €565. In addition we would offer free hire on either 8 candle stands for the aisle, or lanterns or trees for the entrance. Any unusual requests? Last year I had a bride wanting to incorporate a locket with a picture of her deceased mum in her bouquet. Last month a mother cut some lace from her own wedding dress to use as trim on her daughters bouquet. I once had to deliver a dozen white roses to a bride from her dad, who had passed away some time before the wedding. To this day she buys a dozen white roses for his grave every year on the anniversary. Anything else you would like to add? Brides, please factor in all costs before you chose your bridesmaids. All too often we have brides booking their wedding flowers and they don’t realise the reason the cost is adding up is because of the number of attendants they have. For instance the package above will cost €760 if you have 5 bridesmaids. Flowers play a huge part in your wedding, make sure you love them. Make sure they reflect your personality. It is our aim to make sure you are happy with our work on your special day. This is your day to shine.

Ring O’Roses

A rose by any other name would probably be called… Pat Irwin of Ring O’Roses. Pat is a legend among Limerick brides. Once you make contact with Ring O’Roses, you know with quiet confidence that florally speaking, your special day is in the best of hands.Whatever shape your wedding or civil union takes, Pat has the experience, the creativity, and the sense of adventure to bring your dreams to life. Pat knows and loves flowers. At her shop in Melrose Court, Mungret Street, she works at creating wonderful wedding bouquets, stunning swags, terrific trimmings and fabulous floral arrangements to decorate your chosen venues. Her floral confections leave an impression that lasts long after the wedding is over, the band has gone home and the blooms have passed their best. The scent, the colour, the beauty and the personality of her flowers are what memories are made of. Some brides have a vision of how they want their flowers to be – Pat sees it as her job to translate that vision into reality. She listens to your ideas and works with you to make your day perfect. If you’re the kind of bride who’s never given flowers a second thought, then Pat will come up trumps with ideas to enchant you. Your job on the day is to be a radiant, beautiful bride. Pat’s role is to make sure that the flowers you choose frame your day perfectly with artistry, elegance and style. Photos and videos will record this most special of days, but the scent and texture of your feature flowers are part of what is personal to you – your choice and your touch. Luxurious lilies, amazing azaleas, gorgeous gerberas, pretty pink roses, dazzling dahlias – all yours for the picking! Whether your style is quaintly quirky, boldly contemporary, understatedly elegant or colourfully vivacious, Ring O’Roses shares your vision and makes it your reality. Anyone can put flowers together. Pat at Ring O’Roses makes your wedding dreams come true with prices to suit all budgets, and a touch of floral magic that’s priceless. Make your wedding day blossom with Ring O’Roses – we don’t just do flowers, we do dreams.

Tel 061 411321 Web 59







8 & 12. Noreen’s Flowers 061 320 065 9. Cerise Flowers & Events 086 1590659 10 & 14. Tiger Lillies 061 382 053 11. Grettals Petals 061 364 517 13. Ring O’Roses 061 411 321 60

13 14

ph.Carolyn 061-382053

Covering all of Munster for weddings Each wedding is different – with personalised finishing touches that will enhance and compliment your wedding day Three standard wedding packages – all of which can be combined or altered to suit your requirements and your budget Contact us on 085 111 9993 or call in to the shop to arrange a consultation

Shannon Skycourt Shopping Centre, Shannon, Co. Clare M: +353 (0) 85 1119993 T: +353 (0) 61 364517 E: W: FB: Grettals Petals

Blooming in Business Here For You 61

Vintage Themed Weddings Specialising in Wedding Flowers, Heirloom Brooch Bouquets and Event Décor

Vintage Themedbouquets Weddingscustomised Heirloom

Brooch Bouquets and Event Décor to suit all tastes and budgets

Specialising Flowers, SpecialisingininWedding Wedding Flowers, Heirloom Heirloom Brooch Bouquets and Event Décor

Heirloom Bouquets customised to suit all tastes and budgets

Heirloom bouquets customised to suit all tastes and budgets

You can match any colour through brooches including any special vintage brooches that you have been given by your mother or grandmother, and this can be used as your something old to walk down the aisle with. A truly magnificent keepsake that lasts forever

You can match any colour through brooches including any special vintage brooches that you have Elaine Flanagan Collins Elaine Flanagan Collins Liscarroll, Mallow, Co. Cork been given by your mother or grandmother, andE:this can T: 022 48703 M: 086 1590659 W: Follow us on Facebook be used as your something old to walk down the aisle with. A truly magnificent keepsake that lasts forever Liscarroll, Mallow, Co. Cork. T: 022 48703 M: 086 1590659 W: E: Follow us on Facebook

Elaine Flanagan Collins

Liscarroll, Mallow, Co. Cork. T: 022 48703 FREELANCE M: 086FLORIST 1590659 NOREEN O’DEA HEENAN W: E: Noreen specialises in wedding flowers offering brides a free consultation Follow us on Facebook where she will design a package to suit all styles and budgets. From beautiful church flowers to eye-catching bouquets Noreen also offers an Heirloom Brooch Bouquet with the option of adding your own personal brooches. So whatever you choose Noreen’s attention to detail and her passion for flowers will make your special day florally perfect.

Noreen’s Flowers Patrickswell , Co. Limerick Call us now on 061 320065 Mobile: 086 3645171 Email: 62

“Craftmanship, stunning design and unrivalled quality are at the heart of every piece of jewellery I make.”

Stunning Diamond Rings • Gold & Platinum Wedding Bands Jewellery that is made to last • Designs that will suit any taste and budget Ballycasey Craft & Design Centre, Shannon, Co. Clare Call us: 061 364115 Visit: Love Handcraft Jewellery. Like Gleeson Goldsmiths on Facebook

Directions: Take exit 7 off motorway from Limerick or Ennis. Follow signs for Ballycasey Craft Design Centre, Shannon.



Christmas Day


Last Christmas was one that school teacher Leesa Buckley will

remember forever. Santa had arrived to the house, the kids were playing with their toys, there was Christmas cheer oozing out of the Dooradoyle home she shares with her partner Barry Storan and then it was time. Garryowen native Barry, a guard in Tipperary

proposal for a Limerick Teacher

Town, had an extra special surprise for the love of his life. He had created a beautiful video that he streamed through You Tube. The video had photos from “the moment we started going out,” recalls Leesa, who works in Limerick College of Further Education. “He included everything from our holidays together, moving into our house with my two children Jamie and Lucy, the birth of our first son Charlie, and right up to the birth of our second son Ben last October. At the end of the video was his proposal. I was crying so much watching the video that I didn’t even read the proposal and when I wiped away the tears he was on his knee asking me to marry him ... it was beautiful.” Leesa, through tears of joy, naturally said yes. Together with their children they celebrated Christmas that extra bit special last year. Now wedding plans are in full swing.

The Details

Who was your first friend to meet Barry? Lisa Fitzgerald. She thought he was a really nice guy, down to earth and funny. My first ‘couple’ friends to meet him were Aileen and Eugene. After ten minutes of meeting Barry they invited him to their wedding ... in Cala D’Or, Mallorca! First holiday together Aileen and Eugene’s wedding in Mallorca. “We came back home and were completely head over heels and we both knew this was it ... we would someday do the same ... have a beautiful wedding abroad.” First gifts Barry bought Leesa a ring in a Swarovski jewellers in Cala D’Or. ”I was so happy with it, he went back and bought me the matching neckpiece the following day.” Leesa bought Barry a baseball from the U.S. Annoying habits “Barry doesn’t have any to be honest. He’s very caring. If I’m ever having a bad day or I’ve something on my mind he always knows and I can never be in a bad mood long as he always cheers me up. He makes me smile. We laugh all the time and we are really happy.” Between them Barry and Leesa have four children. Leesa’s two children, Jamie and Lucy, and together they have Ben and Charlie. They need to work well as a team to have a smooth functioning home. “At the moment we are expert synchronised nappy changers as Charlie is almost two, and Ben is almost six-months. “ Any pets A dog named Zeus. A first father’s day gift to Barry from his newborn son Charlie. “There is eight days between the two of them. Charlie John Storan was born 22/4/12 and Zeus was born 30/4/12. We picked Zeus up from his owners for Father’s Day in June last year. We also have a turtle ... Dude ... he’s about six or seven years old now.” Wedding details Marbella, Spain, June 2015. “It’s all organised already. We finally get our beautiful wedding abroad.”



Live Acoustic Band

We’re a one stop shop – we can look after all your musical needs on your wedding day – Church (fiddle player, guitarist, male or female singer), venue arrival music, four-piece band for the reception and DJ after. Book the full package with us today and receive €500 off your overall booking *terms and conditions apply For Enquiries & Bookings

call Paul 087 0936510 or Stefan 087 6890092 Find us on Facebook



Mary Mason was never a fan of New Year’s Eve but that was about to change on the last day of 2013. Her partner, Alan Werder from Wicklow, put a smile on the face of the beautiful Foynes lady when he presented her with her late mother’s engagement ring. That meant the world to her. She knew there and then (although she left Alan hang for about 10 minutes) that this Wicklow man was her future. New Year’s Eve will now always be a time for celebrating and on March 26, 2015 this happy couple will become man and wife in front of God in Foynes Church and celebrate after with family and friends in The Listowel Arms.


It doesn’t get more romantic (and lucky) as this. Wayne Comerford proposed to his fiancée Laura Meade on the very spot she fell madly in love with him. Wayne and Laura met at Young Munster’s rugby club. Their friends Debbie and Ross are a couple. Laura plucked up the courage to chat to Wayne and told him brazingly she could be the one. She was right. Fast forward five years to Christmas 2013. Mid December Wayne asked Laura to share with him the first time she realised she loved him. She told him it was him hugging her goodnight around the corner from her parent’s house. Wayne responded with “Laura, when I hug you all I feel is pure love.” A week later, December 21, Wayne proposed to Laura on the exact same spot she fell in love with him. And things only got better. Wayne and Laura were the lucky winners of a wedding at the Ballykisteen Hotel and golf resort this coming August.

Ian Maher planned his proposal to his girlfriend of 10-years down to a tee, literally down to a gazillion tea-light candles. Before Natal Kelly got home from work late one Friday night over Christmas 2013 Ian lit up the house. He had candles spread out romantically all the way up the stairs leading to their bedroom. When flabbergasted Natal opened the door there she found the man she had loved since they were teenagers down on one knee with the most amazing ring in his hand. Candles, flowers and chocolate strawberries adored the room. Natal naturally said yes. The happy couple are planning to get married in Lanzarote in June 2015. Natal’s family, (especially her sister Siobhan) are over the moon for them both.


that keeps on growing The best relationships are always those that start out as friendships. Peter O’Carroll and Edel Kavanagh, both Limerick natives, are a prime example. They knew each other for years through a mutual friend but a party at Peter’s brother’s house a few years ago changed their status a little. It took about three months but finally Edel knew Peter was the man she wanted to spend the

The Details

First thing Edel noticed about Peter His shoes and scarf What is the one thing you love about him? His kindness, and willingness to consider me first in all situations.

rest of her days with.

His annoying habits Peter is so tidy and organised in his work, but so untidy and disorganised at home.

Peter, a graphic designer, knew Edel was a right fit and wanted to

Did ye ever break up? I wouldn’t call it a break up but we did take a few attempts to get going.

propose to her sooner rather than later so after two happy years together he knew it was time. Peter took Edel, a medical writer, to stay in Dromoland Castle

Did your parents approve of Peter straight off ? Yes both parents did approve straight away though I did introduce Peter to my dad as my “friend” the first time they met …just in case!

over the Christmas. “We had dinner and a lovely stay and nothing

How long were ye dating before ye got engaged? 2 years, 8 months

happened. It wasn’t until we went for a walk on the grounds the following morning that he went down on one knee and I said Yes.” Peter bought Edel a stunning sapphire engagement ring – her birthstone – and she is head over heels in love with it – and with Peter of course!

Wedding date August 1, 2015 at Hotel Doolin, Co. Clare. First holiday together Castlegregory, Co. Kerry with Edel’s whole family What was the first present you bought him? Half a dog! What was the first present he bought you? Tickets to Take That Favourite TV show together Home & Away Do ye have any pets? Two Siberian Huskies: Hugo (nearly three years old) & his half-brother Jack (15 weeks old) “We love our dogs as if they were our kids. We got Hugo when we were barely going out, now we have his half-brother – and take them everywhere with us... camping, hotel stays, holidays, etc.” First fight Probably about the dog



A Limerick Couple

Serenaded by the tunes of the Saw Doctors four years ago Rachel

Scanlon and Cathal McCarthy swapped numbers. At the time of the concert Rachel, a nurse, was living in Cork. The pair did the long-distance thing (Cork-Limerick) for 18-months but they wanted

who met at a concert

to be closer so Rachel moved back to Limerick. On October 26, 2013 Rachel returned from working the night shift tired and ready for her bed. She was taken by complete surprise when she opened her kitchen door to see the worlds “Will You Marry Me” spelt out in tea lights and pictures of both of them adorning the floor. Rachel was overwhelmed with emotion and naturally said “Yes”. She was even more impressed when she went to tell her mother and realised that her now fiancé had asked her permission the night before. Rachel is a health care assistant from Monaleen and Shannon native, Cathal, works for Fleming Medical. The pair now live in Castletroy.

The Details

When did you know Cathal was the one? “After a couple of dates I knew Cathal was something special and that I had to hold onto him.” His annoying habits “Cathal is a clean freak, in a good way though, he has our house spotless.” Did ye ever break up? No How long were ye dating before ye got engaged? Three years and 10 months. Wedding date July 30, 2016 First holiday together A friend’s wedding in Altea, Spain First present you bought Cathal “A Man United hoodie for our first Valentine’s Day. I knew the way to his heart even back then.” What was the first present Cathal bought you? “A beautiful bouquet of a dozen roses for Valentines … I was blown away.” Favourite TV show together “Homeland” Any pets “We don’t but we had a family dog named Daisy who we all loved but unfortunately the week after our engagement we had to send her to doggy heaven. We’ve since got another dog called Jessie so when mom is away she lords it up at our house.”


Sew Perfect

Bridal Alterations Specialist Bespoke Dressmaking

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Trevor –

The Style Guru It’s over! Yes the worst winter on record. We are now looking onward and upward to some warm sunshine. I am sure you all now have numerous wedding invitations piling up. It must be nice to be that popular, but with popularity comes decisions, wardrobe revisions and some expense. So for all those gents who need a social secretary to keep on top of events here are a few hints and tips on how to wow those bridesmaids! If you are to play it safe a simple navy suit (light material but good cut) with a white crisp shirt and tie is the way to go. Simple black dress shoes are a must. If you opt for a three piece suit, a good fitted waistcoat can change your look. This is essential to look the part once your jacket has been banished to the back of the chair as you begin to have a great time. If you are a bit more daring and don’t want to play it safe, it is summer after all, have some fun, starting with your attire. Personally I would opt for a light coloured suit, light grey or even powder blue (if you are that daring) combined with a pastel coloured shirt, some fabulous colours available on the high streets at the moment tied in with a splash of colour on your neck tie, bow tie and even pocket square. This colour should be quite bold and daring, burnt orange, purple, reds etc. (You are out to have fun after all). This suit can get numerous outings with different coloured shirt, shoes etc. Orla, can  you  cut  the  image  out  of  this..  sorry  I  can’t   Orla,  can  you  cut  the  image  out  of  this..  sorry  I  can’t   download download

What about that barbeque the next day? Pop on a different blazer, no tie, causal ‘kick back’ look. Wear your suit jacket over those comfie jeans, casual shoes (brogues still big as previously mentioned) and go cure that hangover! Orla, can    you  cut  this  too.    

As ever grooming is an essential part of your preparation for the revelry over the summer months. Fabulous summer skin can be achieved by manly moisturizing. A personal favourite of mine is L’Oreal Men Expert (Mens Science Daily Face Kit). It takes the guess work out of thinking of what products to use, as it is all in one pack, available in most pharmacies. Now go and knock them dead! Follow me on Facebook – Trevor’s Style Blog. Personal shopping service available and/or advice tips on any aspect of styling or grooming. 70


Ask the Expert: Dermot Noonan What is the most popular style suit grooms are opting for at present? The most popular style is modern three piece fitted suits with matching waistcoats. The demand for traditional suits, and waistcoats has declined countrywide but at Esquire we are coordinating modern waistcoats, and neck wear, with these suits, and we are seeing a big comeback here. What is the most popular colour suit? Most popular colour is either navy or charcoal grey. These two classic colours always look good on, don’t date, and work very well for all age groups in a wedding party and most importantly coordinate very well with the vast majority of brides and bridesmaids dresses. Since January of this year the demand for royal blue three piece suits has rocketed. It is a powerful colour and some makers are more vibrant than others with the colour. My advice here is to lean towards the darker side of royal blue. Tonic navy blue is a fabulous fashionable colour as well, and well worth checking out, we stock both. We stock brown hire shoes to complete the look. How far in advance should grooms book? Grooms generally book their suits three to six months before a wedding but it’s always best to book early. Many grooms who do book early with us can later change the styles, colours, and number of suits required if needs be. We are very flexible and it’s not a problem for us as our tailor prepares the suits the week before any wedding. We have 50 year’s of

Limericks leading wedding hire or sales specialists for men Monday to Saturday 9am to 5:30pm Sunday by appointment only

of Esquire Menswear

experience between us and we always go through all the possible options with a new wedding couple and offer detailed advice. If we think you are making the wrong choice we will tell you. We want the groom and his party to look their absolute best because so much of our business comes from referrals from weddings. What kind of deposit is required at booking? The deposit required is 10% of hire cost generally when booking. Some people pay more, some less and that’s all fine with us. Do you stock page boy suits? Yes we stock mini suits for page boys and we often dress them just like the groom. They always steal the show. We have suits from age one upwards. Younger page boys look cuter in bow ties or cravats even when the adults opt for ties. Any extra services? We have an in house tailor who can alter jackets, trousers, waistcoats, and shirts for the perfect fit. We also do alterations for a lot of the men’s clothing retailers in Limerick so if you have jeans, suits, etc at home and want a better fit bring it in to us. We also stock light weight suits for weddings abroad and sell wedding suits, shirts, cuff links, neck wear, shoes and accessories. We hire brown and black wedding shoes and appointments can be made outside of normal business hours. Esquire Formal Menswear, 8 Roches Street, Limerick 061 412010

Wedding Suits, Tuxedos, Page Boy Suits, Fashion Suits, Waistcoats, Shirts, Cuff Links, Ties, Cravats & Shoes High quality formal wear at affordable prices In-house tailor with 30 years’ experience Extensive range of accessories to complement and complete your look

8 Roches Street, Limerick T: 061 412010 W: E: Find us on Facebook: Esquire Formal Menswear 71

1 3





Hottest bridal trends now on sale in local shops


8 1 & 3. Virginia’s Bridal, Limerick 061 415 418 2, 4 & 7. Sefton House Bridal, Limerick 086 842 5060 5, 6 & 8. The Little White Dress Bridal Salon, Limerick 085 818 1533



9 11


9 & 12. Virginia’s Bridal, Limerick 061 415 418 10. Ivory Lane, Limerick 085 118 8858 11. Sefton House Bridal, Limerick 086 842 5060 73


What is your colour scheme? Let us help us make up your mind. All bridesmaid dresses below are available in local and nearby stores for your convenience.






6 1 & 6. Kates Kloset, Askeaton, Limerick 061 392711 2 & 7. Sefton House Bridal, Limerick 086 842 5060 3 & 5. Diamond Bridal, Cork 021 494 9900 4 & 8. Ivory Lane, Limerick 085 118 8858 74



Barry O’Connell of Destination Motivation One question I get asked a lot about Destination Motivation is, What do ye do? In simple terms, we combine personal training, fitness classes and weight watchers/motivation /slimming world. We have scheduled training courses in which a client will pick their specific days and times from our timetable and we train for six weeks. The variety to our training is what keeps people coming back as we rarely do the same thing twice. We always progress as the weeks go on to make sure we keep challenging our clients. We focus on training such as HIIT (high intensity interval training), bodyweight, strength, functional, cardio and core training with the overall goal of not only getting fitter, but getting results in the process which is the most important part for any future bride!

talks shop

beginning and at the end of the course, which is vital for any bride looking to get into the dress of their dreams! Health and fitness are our number one priority. And we always have enough trainers at each session to make sure that no matter what fitness level you are, you are well taken care of but also pushed in order to get you to where you want to be. But if weight loss and results are what you crave, our numbers back that up too. Our record weight loss over six weeks is 32lbs! I take great pride in knowing what our training brings to people. It makes them look and feel fantastic and I’ve seen people’s self-confidence just change before my very eyes. Our clients have made many friends from training with us, so much so, that we all consider ourselves to be one big fitness family.

We want all our trainees to look fit, not skinny, so that not only will they look incredible on their wedding day, but also to look incredible on their wedding night too!

If you’re willing to put in the work, the rewards are huge. And we enjoy the odd night out too which are becoming legendary!

As a nutritional consultant, I give each person sample fat loss food plans to work from based on their weight, lifestyle and goals for the six weeks. We weigh people every week and take body measurements at the

If what I have written here isn’t enough, go to our testimonials page @ and see for yourself what training with us can do for you. Barry O’Connell, Owner, Destination Motivation

Interested in becoming fit and healthy for your wedding? Destination Motivation programs have the answer. • 6 week courses • weekly weigh ins, sample food plans, excellent fitness classes • fitness levels, age and gender does not matter • record weight loss is 32 pounds in 6 weeks Destination Motivation is rapidly becoming the thing to do in order for people to reach their goals. We combine healthy eating with scheduled training sessions in a very comfortable environment while also making sure that people reach their own potential.

Days, times and prices on our website Follow our client’s progress on Facebook and learn about our programs. Destination Motivation Personal Training

Tel 086 3739587

You have an ultimate target for your wedding day We promise to get you the wedding body of your dreams 75


A day in the life Sharon McMeel Wedding Planner of the Year Sharon

What are the top 6 most important things to consider when

McMeel is an extremely busy lady. She

organising a wedding?

has helped to organise hundreds of

1. The first thing you must do is sit down together as a couple and

weddings, both big and small, to make

list all the things that are important to you about the wedding. Each

that special day perfect. People seek

of you should write your list separately and then share the list with

her expertise from all corners of the

each other.

island (and sometimes abroad) so how

2. Next big step is the budget. You need to have a realistic look at

does she do it? What are Sharon’s tips

how much you both can afford to spend, how long you have to save

for organising the perfect wedding and

for the wedding and who if anyone is contributing to the wedding.

where did it all begin?

This is always one of the hardest conversations to have but get it all done at the beginning and it makes controlling the budget much

How did you get into wedding planning?

easier during the rest of the planning process.

I originally got my love of party planning from my mother Dolores.

3. Buy a calendar. Once you’ve decided on the date of your wedding

As long as I can remember my mum was organising birthday

use the calendar to plan out specific dates that you want to get

parties, Halloween and New Year’s Eve parties, and trips to concerts for

things accomplished.

her friends. It wasn’t until I started working in the Castle Oaks House

4. Get everything in writing, particularly if you are getting a special

Hotel that I had my first real introduction to planning weddings and

deal from your supplier or venue. Remember that staff change and

discovered that it is a wonderful thing to be invited to join in one of

you don’t want to be arguing with your venue six months before

the most important and special day of a person life.

your wedding about the drinks reception and bar extension you were told were included.

How long have you been a wedding planner?

5. Take time out from the wedding planning. Organise time with your

I started working in the hotel back in 2004 and set up my own

fiancé where the wedding discussions are off limits. Many couples

business in 2007.

can feel the pressure in their relationship while going through all of the organising so it’s important to look after each other.

You recently won a prestigious award?

6. Hire a wedding planner. I know I’m biased but trust me hiring

Yes I was delighted chosen as the Wedding Planner of the Year at

a wedding planner even if it’s just to look after the day itself will

the Weddingsonline Awards 2014.

make a huge difference to how you enjoy the day and the memories you come away with. Your wedding day is the time to hand over

What is your ethos when working with a couple?

responsibility to someone else so that they can worry about all the

I think the name of my business explains that best. Sharon Mc Meel …

details you planned which leaves you free to completely enjoy your

Your Day, Your Story. It’s all about the couple and what they want.

day, to be relaxed and totally loved up with your new husband/wife.

Every couple is different and has different needs, different tastes and different family situations so I try to find out at the very beginning what is important to the couple, how they met and how they have come to this wonderful occasion of deciding to get married. It is my job to be their advisor, confidant, friend, sounding board, counselor, financial advisor, you name it I cover it. You wear many hats as a wedding planner and at the end of the day if your couple is smiling from the minute they wake up until it’s time they go to bed then I’ve done my job.


A typical day for Sharon 6.30am – alarm goes off. Have a freshly made juice or smoothie. Head into the office on O’Connell Street (number 100, 2nd floor) in Limerick City. “That’s probably where the typical day ends. No two days are ever the same. “Today I could be with a couple tasting wedding cake fillings and deciding on a cake design and tomorrow I could be researching new ideas for a ceremony. Having such a variety in what I do day to day is one of the reasons why I love my job.”

Sharon McMeel – Your Day, Your Story Mob: +353 86 8524800 Tel: +353 61 424697 Web: Email: Twitter:@sharonmcmeel Skype: @smcmeel


Ciara O’Callaghan Daryl McGrath Photos courtesy of Finbarr Crean Photography A BIT ABOUT THE BRIDE Ciara O’Callaghan is 25-year-old and from Charleville, Co. Cork. She now lives in Newcastle West with her husband Daryl and their two daughters, Arwen and Heidi. A BIT ABOUT THE GROOM Daryl McGrath, 27, is from Ballyagran, Co. Limerick. Daryl is a hair stylist at Le Chocolat, Limerick. THE MEET At a wedding in Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel in 2008. It was love at first sight for Daryl but it took Ciara a bit longer to realise Daryl was the one for her – two years to be exact. THE PROPOSAL Daryl proposed to Ciara on October 10, 2010 at the Hotel Europe in Killarney down by the lake. WEDDING DATE October 25, 2013 WEDDING VENUES Newcastle West Bible Fellowship and the reception was there also BRIDESMAIDS Tara McBride and Sinéad Watkins BESTMEN Kevin O’ Callaghan and Dave O’ Keeffe CAKE Mirka Cakes in Charleville INVITES “We decided to make our own invites because we wanted to give it that personal touch and we could design them the way we wanted them. We used light brown stock card with burlap and lace and some blush pink ribbon. I love all things rustic looking,” shared Ciara. ENTERTAINMENT Photo booth and props TRANSPORT A cream Chrysler, a surprise organised by Daryl for Ciara PHOTOGRAPHER Finbarr Crean from Ballinhassig Co. Cork and his wife. FIRST DANCE “Amazed” by Lonestar. HOW MANY GUESTS? 40 family and friends WEDDING THEME A vintage/rustic theme. “I had lots of burlap and lace and mason jars with pillar candles inside of them. I had lace bunting and I made my own craft tissue paper pom poms.”

FAVOURITE MEMORY Ciara’s favourite memories of the day – “my journey in the wedding car on the way to the church, I couldn’t believe it was finally our wedding day and I was just trying to soak it all in and seeing Daryl waiting for me at the top of the aisle, something I thought wouldn’t happen as soon as it did.” Daryl’s favourite memory – “when I saw Ciara walking up the aisle to me, something I dreamt about since the day I first laid eyes on her.” YOU HAD A CHRISTIAN SERVICE AND RECEPTION, TELL US ABOUT IT A Christian wedding is Christ-centred. He is the focal point. Christians who get married are not only making a commitment to each other but also to Christ. God intended for marriage to be a covenant relationship, not a contract, for it to last forever and not something to be taken lightly. When our knowledge grew of the biblical significance of marriage, we really appreciated the true meaning of the ceremony and what it meant to both of us and to God. We had our reception at the church because it meant a lot to us to have everything on the day held in the one place. SPECIAL TOUCHES “Everyone who was part of our wedding made it so special for us. We had so much help from Newcastle West Bible Fellowship and from Charleville Christian Bible Fellowship. We had so much help in the decor from Natalie Burnett, and amazing help in every aspect from the Shanks


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Italy is one of the most visited countries in the world, especially by honeymooners. The landscapes, culture and the charm of Italy continues to draw thousands of visitors to the country every year. Italy is rich in history, is known for its beautiful architecture, has plenty of activities and events and has beautiful picturesque villages. Italy is romantic in every way possible. It is known to be a perfect destination for lovers. There are plenty of places to choose from, its art cities, and beautiful islands to the snow covered peaks. Given below are the top 5 honeymoon destinations in Italy:

where to visit 3. Florence

Florence is action packed all through the year with its various public events and entertainment options. Florence is the capital of the region of Tuscany and is situated on the banks of the Arno River. Visit Ponte Vecchio, the famous bridge on the river for a beautiful view of the river. The statue of

1. Venice

David by Michelangelo is also not to be missed.

Without a doubt, Venice has to be one on the top of this list. Venice is known

4. The Amalfi Coast

to be the most romantic city in the world and for good reason. People who visit the city fall in love with it at first sight. The captivating and unique

The beautiful Amalfi Coast has to be on

buildings, the canals the old villas and the very air of the city is romantic.

the list of every honeymooner visiting Italy.

Roaming around the pretty streets can be one of the most romantic things

The coastline stretches on a picturesque

you could do on your honeymoon. Stop frequently at the outdoor cafes and

steep landscape, along which many

enjoy a cup of coffee or wine.

beautiful towns and quaint villages are

There are plenty of places in Venice where you can enjoy some quiet time with your loved one. And although it sounds clichĂŠd, do not miss the gondola ride.

located. The town of Amalfi is the major tourist resort and a base for visiting many other destinations along the coast. Visit the town of Sorrento which offers beautiful ocean views and a glimpse into the life of the locals. Those who are in mood to visit a chic location can head to Positano that has many world class restaurants and shopping streets lined with chic boutiques.

5. Capri The island of Capri has been famous with celebrities and the elite crowd of the world since decades. It is a classy chic holiday destination which has an air of mystery around it. The island is perfect for those couples who want to have a honeymoon that offers natural beauty as well as glamour. The simplicity of the island is quite captivating and the scenic panoramas of the island add to its beauty. (the above information is from

2. Rome Rome is one of the most visited cities in the world. There are many beautiful narrow lanes, parks and restaurants in the city which provide ample of options. It’s best for honeymooners to avoid the large crowded squares and head for the internal medieval lanes of the city. Piazza Navona and Campo de Fiori have plenty of peaceful charming streets and corners dotted with cafes. Visit the beautiful rose garden, the Ponte Sisto Bridge that leads to Trastevere and the small island of Tiber. 80

A hen showered with gifts & memories


Rachel Conway is still talking about her Kerry hen party back in late February. Her bridesmaids, Jane Mullane, Kate Conway and Niamh McNamara, went above and beyond to throw this Ballyneety lady a timeless bachelorette party. It was decided a few months before the hen party that Listowel, Co. Kerry would be the perfect spot to show Rachel how to party without her future Clonlara husband Eoin O’Donoghue. They pampered her, fed her, showered her with gifts and above all threw her one of the best weekends of her life. Along with her mother, Pauline Conway and Eoin’s mum, Rose O’Donoghue, 23 other lasses booked into the Listowel Arms Hotel and boy were they treated like queens. Rachel and two of her friends were given the bridal suite when they checked into the hotel. They couldn’t believe their luck. On the Friday evening they had some arrival drinks in the hotel bar followed by a delicious meal in Allos Restaurant in the town centre. The following day they did a spot of shopping and had some light lunch. In the afternoon the hen relaxed in the bath in the bridal suite. While the hen was chilling the other girls were busy decorating her room. The biggest surprise Rachel received when she opened the door was 25 Eoins staring back at her. Each of the girls had an Eoin mask making it “very weird and very funny.” Rachel’s friends then presented her with personalised hen bracelets, sweets, hangover cures, water and rice-crispy buns. She also received personalised champagne, underwear for her years of married life ahead, baking tins, sweets and lots more. Her aunt presented her with a hamper of home-made items such as an apron, tea towels, place mats, and cushions. When all the gifts were bestowed it was time for a meal in the hotel. Following dinner the ladies hit the town and ended up in the local nightclub. “Every pub we went to they were so welcoming, giving me free drinks and dancing with the girls. Listowel really is a great town for a night out,” said Rachel. Some much appreciated Tayto sandwiches were ordered later into the night which were washed down with some more beverages and cocktails for the bride in the hotel resident’s bar. Kevin, the barman, made sure they were well looked after.

The Gossip

Hen Date February 28, March 1, 2014 Wedding Date April 24, 2014 How many on tour? 25 The Theme Leopard print Chief Organisers Kate Conway & Jane Mullane Special Touches Masks of three of her closest friends who couldn’t be there on the day as they are living abroad so the hen could get her photo taken with them. The girls also put together a video message from them and photos of them together with Rachel. Rachel sister, Jane, made a lovely speech. How many nights Two Most Memorable Moment “Walking into the room on Saturday night and seeing all the girls facing me wearing masks of the groom to be” The Cost €129.00 for two night’s bed and breakfast and a three course evening meal in the Listowel Arms Hotel. Bus or Car People made their own way. What is the one thing you would recommend from the hen party? “The hotel, the town in general, and if you need a party planner then you can’t get any better than my bridesmaids.”


A Limerick girl stays local for hen party HEN FEATURE

HEN NAME Marie Fitzgerald GROOM’S NAME David Hanley WHERE IS MARIE FROM? Castlemahon, Co. Limerick. WHERE IS THE GROOM FROM? Athlone BRIDESMAIDS’ NAMES Edel Doyle, Samantha Byrne, and Trina Cremin LOCATION OF HEN PARTY? Limerick City DATE OF HEN Saturday, February 22, 2014 DATE OF WEDDING April 26, 2014 HOW MANY IN ATTENDANCE About 20 ANYONE TRAVEL FROM AFAR? Athlone and Galway THEME Pink and Black CHIEF ORGANISERS Edel, Samantha and Trina – “They were fantastic and both the Athlone and Limerick crew mixed so well and got on fantastically,” shared Marie. BOOKING The entire hen was booked through

The Gossip Accommodation An overnight stay in the Pier Hotel in the city. Activity A dance lesson in Aubars. “I never laughed so much. The dance instructor was full of energy and we danced to “Timber” by Pitbull.” Dinner Absolute Hotel. “It was so fantastic and I’ll be definitely going back there again.” Drinking and dancing The Old Quarter Bar “There was a brilliant band there, the staff were fantastic even sending over drinks to the girls on tour.” The quirky details A few days after the hen Marie was presented with a secret video from her friend Tony of them learning the dance. “I was in tears laughing. The camera was put on the bar counter before it started. It was a brilliant idea and something to keep.” There was also a memory book with photos of Marie throughout the years. The best part The dancing, the food at the Absolute Hotel, and the Old Quarter Bar. How many nights One Anything that went on tour that stayed on tour Mary’s snoring! The cost For the Athlone crew it was €99 euros per person. For those not staying in the hotel it was about €70 for the dance lesson, the meal, drinks and entry into the nightclub (Aubars but they didn’t make it). Transport Mini-bus from Athlone (they paid separately for this). Most recommended part The dance lesson Is Limerick a good venue for a hen? “I would definitely recommend having a hen party in Limerick. Everything was within walking distance, which was kind on the feet.” Any added bits Happy 40th Samantha. It was bridesmaid Samantha’s 40th birthday on the night of the hen and she kept it to herself. “She didn’t tell anyone as she didn’t want to take the limelight away from me. When we finally found out we got her a cupcake with a candle at the last minute.” It was also Marie’s friend Niamh’s birthday so, there were plenty of celebrations at the hen party. Any advice Don’t go ice-skating. “There was a hen we met in the Absolute who apparently went ice skating and within two minutes broke her arm. Also, instead of flats, wear boots. I had my foot stood on twice by a stiletto wearing lady. I have the war marks!”


Limerick ladies


hit the town in Carlow

Shannon lass Alice O’Connor has just married the love her life Newcastle West native Paul Feane. She had a wonderful day. A few weeks before her wedding Alice’s best friends threw her an amazing hen party in Co. Carlow. On March 1, 17 Limerick ladies invaded Carlow town for a party that will be etched in Alice’s memory forever. Wanting to make it as memorable as possible Alice’s bridesmaids organised for the crew to stop off at Barack Obama’s cousin’s bar in Moneygall, Co. Offaly. This was the perfect start to the day. Although the salsa dancing teacher didn’t show up to teach them some sexy moves in Carlow they didn’t let that deter them from having some fun. While at the hotel (Woodford Dolmen Hotel) they played games (musical chairs) and had a Mad Hatter Dinner Party. Later in the evening they downed shots and danced their hearts out to all sorts of tunes in a local nightclub.

The Gossip

Wedding Date April 12, 2014 Bridesmaids Ciara Meehan, Marion O’Grady and Rachel Glynn Alice’s favourite memory Playing musical chairs. How many nights? One Most memorable moment? Receiving a letter from Paul and a wedding day emergency box. Bus or cars? People made their own way



Ask the Expert: Laura Hennessy What makes Educogym Corbally different from other standard gyms? The Educogym atmosphere is like nothing you’ve experienced before. The focused approach and invigorating exercise program, produces a world class environment for success. The highly trained, certified staff have been taught how to create an extremely motivating atmosphere that is both exciting and result orientated. We guarantee results. What kind of training do you provide to a bride before her big day? All training sessions are supervised by your own personal trainer, lasting just 20 minutes, 3 times per week. Achieve incredible results with just 1 hour of training per week! We provide complete nutritional advice and support throughout each programme with one to one consultations and continuous monitoring. Tailored personalised exercise programmes are available for each bride, depending on body shape, desired goals and dress design. How far in advance should a bride start at Educogym? This really depends on her goals. Average weight loss for all my female clients is 1 to 1.5 stone per month and 3 inches off the waistline. Tell us about some of your success stories to date? Since I opened Educogym Corbally in August 2013 I have grown from

of Educogym Corbally strength to strength. One of my clients, Maria Byrnes from Corbally, joined the gym in August 2013 for a 4 month programme. Maria’s results are as follows: total weight loss of 1 stone 9lbs, 5inches from her waistline, total inch loss 39inches and reduced body fat by 6.7% - in just 4 months. Also to date 100% of my clients are on target to achieving their respective weight loss goal. Is food as important as exercise when trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle? With Educogym there are no starvation diets, just good nutrition. The aim of the Educogym Nutrition Program is to educate clients in how they can draw out their perfect body from within. The core understanding of the program is that most people are eating an unnatural diet which upsets the balance of the hormones in our bodies. This statement could not be truer than in recent times with the introduction of various fad diets and fast food outlets. Every day of their lives, people are unknowingly creating an imbalance in their bodies’ powerful control centres, resulting in increased fat storage, health problems and premature aging.The root of this dietary problem stems from the fact that for over 99.8% of human existence we ate a very different diet than in recent times. By eating a natural diet we can halt premature aging and achieve better health while increasing lean muscle and permanently eliminating excess body fat. See Educogym Corbally ad on page 89.

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Ask the Expert: Eleanor Murnane of Murnane Financial Services

Has it crossed your mind that it may be time to look into financial stability for your future? Many newlyweds seek financial advice on life insurance and pensions as they begin the next chapter of their lives Call Eleanor today to discuss your options

For honest open advice on how to save money and get proper financial security that you understand, call Eleanor at Murnane Financial Services, an independent Life & Pensions broker, that puts you first. Mobile: 086 8940354. We have found our ideal home and are in the process of looking for a mortgage. Do we have to go with the bank for our life cover? Absolutley not, if you are unsure as to what is suitable for your needs and budget at that time, then you should get independent financial advice from a broker. It will, more than likely, save you money and give you a better understanding of what you are paying for.

Eleanor Murnane, BBS, QFA 086 894 0354 / E: Eleanor Murnane is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland





How often should we be reviewing what we currently have? As life moves forward it also changes, along with everyones circumstances, so what suited your needs two years ago may not be suitable for you now. For instance, you may have started a family, you could have changed jobs, where you may have life cover through your work etc. I would suggest you sit down with an independent broker every two years to ensure that your cover is right for you at that time. When should I start paying into a pension? Generally, the younger you are the better it is to start your pension but it is always worth looking at a pension, no matter what age, as there is tax relief and various other reasons why it makes sense to start a pension sooner rather than later. I had a lady who started her pension at 55 where she had access to a company pension. She got tax relief on her money on the way in and on retirement at age 60 was able to take all her money back tax free! I have just changed jobs where I was paying into a pension through work. What happens to my money? Your pension money will always be YOUR money, but you should look at putting that fund into your own name so that you have full control over your money. It would be advisable to do this as you can decide what funds to put the money into. For more information, you should talk to a broker for different options. 86


Ask the Expert: Amy O’Regan How long has Limerick Racecourse been hosting hen parties? Limerick Racecourse has been hosting hen parties since we opened here at Greenmount Park in 2001, but there has been a significant increase in the numbers of hen parties in the last three years. Hen parties are always looking for something fun and different to do as an activity. Groups like to dress up and fascinators never look out of place at the racecourse. Tell us about a typical hen night? Horse racing has become extremely popular for hen parties. Here at Limerick Racecourse, race meeting would start at 2:30pm and the hen party would normally arrive one hour prior to racing. The majority of hens would book the restaurant package or a private suite package to include a dining option. We have a Hen Wheel of Fortune game whereby the hen can spin the wheel to win some prizes. These could be a round of drinks, the hen may get to wear jockey silks, pull a pint behind the bar, or win some star prizes. Hen parties also have the opportunity to present a trophy to one of the winning connections in the parade ring. We send photos to the groups after as a momento. We also have a welcome note in the race card with a profile of the hen and some information along with a picture. Racing finishes approx.

of Limerick Racecourse 5:30pm and the hen groups normally stay around after racing for a few drinks and then head to Limerick City. What kind of packages do you offer? Group rates are available on groups of 10 or more people. General Admission is €10 per person. Restaurant packages are from €50pp to include admission, racecard, a 3-course lunch, reserved table in the restaurant, waiter service, and tote betting facility. Private suites allow groups their own private suite with balcony and food can be added to this package. There is waiter service to the box and tote betting also. The private suite package with finger food is available at €45pp and hens go free on any package booked. A lot of girls are staying local for hen parties. Why is that do you think? I think it gives an opportunity to all the female members of the family to attend, from mothers, aunties, cousins and sisters. Sometimes it’s easier to stay local to accommodate relations and for friends with young children. What upcoming dates have you available? Saturday April 26 is an extremely popular day for both hen and stag parties at Limerick Racecourse along with Saturday June 7 which is the first Twilight meeting for 2014 and we have a 70s/80s theme night planned on this date which promises to be great fun.



Phyllis and Ger – 45 years married

Chrissie and Tadhg – 44 years married

Phyllis and Ger got engaged in March 1969. They were only

16-year-old Chrissie was impressed with teenager Tadhg’s rowing skills at a Limerick regatta many years ago, so impressed in fact that when Tadgh Mullane asked to meet her at the Corpus Christi procession later that evening. Chrissie accepted.

dating a mere two months at the time but they knew that they were meant for each other and they weren’t about to let time stand in the way of true love.

Their first official date took place in The Savoy, the “ballroom of romance” at the time. It was love from the very beginning for both of them, and that love is still very evident today. The year they got married the country was overcome with the “Hong Kong Flu” and as a result many people couldn’t attend their wedding. The ceremony was at 11am in St. Munchins Church and the reception was held in The Shannon Arms.

Phyllis Callopy, from Janesboro, and Ger Micks, from Thomondgate became man and wife on August 25, 1969. They married in Our Lady Queen of Peace Church in Janesboro and held their reception in The Shannon

They left the reception that evening to catch a train to Dublin where they were to spend their honeymoon. Unfortunately, it had to be cut short as they both came down with aforementioned flu. Their first family home was opposite St Mary’s Church, but they moved to Kileely after a couple of years where they have lived happily ever since.

Arms. The newlyweds spent their honeymoon in Ballybunion. Their secret to a long and happy marriage is to not be selfish and to listen to each other. They have always shared the same interests, and above everything else they love to spend time with their two grandchildren. When asked what their favourite memories together were, it was, without doubt, the birth of both their children.

Mary and Michael stay true to their wedding vows On February 2, 1965 in The Arcadia Ballroom in Cork City, two people met for the first time. Mary and Michael, both from Mitchelstown, were there to hear Tommy Drennan and the Monarchs play. Their eyes met across the smoky hall and there on that dance floor in Cork a flourishing relationship blossomed which would later span five decades. Mary and Michael dated for four years before getting married. On April 26, 1969 in St. Bartholemew’s Church in Kildorrery, Mary and Michael were married. After the church the happy couple, joined by their 70 guests, made their way to The Hibernian Hotel in Mallow. There was a tradition back then that a “going away” would happen during the wedding reception where the guests would wave the newlyweds off on their honeymoon so their reception finished at 6.30pm. 88

Mary’s wedding dress was borrowed from her older sister. The Honeymoon consisted of a trip around the west coast of Ireland for a week. Their first night was spent in Limerick City. Mary and Michael, now in their mid-sixties, have four children and four grandchildren.

They believe the key to a long marriage is to accept that there will be disagreements along the way but be prepared to compromise. Another piece of advice the couple part with is to enjoy some hobbies together but it is essential to also make time for your own particular interests. A parting wisdom from Mary and Michael – “try to remember the words of your wedding vows if the going gets tough” and to “be a friend to each other always.”

say I do to a new

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MORE RESULTS • LESS TIME GREAT MOTIVATION “One of my best decisions was to join Educogym in Corbally. I had previously done Educo for my wedding and achieved amazing results, but with 2 kids later and a full time job the weight had gone back on and was hard to shift. Lately I had always felt tired and sluggish. I knew Educogym was the way to go. Just a 20 minute intense workout 3-times a week fits perfectly into my busy schedule. The food plans are easy to follow and I never felt hungry. What spurred me on even more was that I could see the results almost immediately. My strength had improved as had my focus and drive. I noticed more definition and toning in a few weeks training in Educogym then months spent in a regular gym. The results are truly amazing if you put the work into both the diet and gym. The constant support from my trainer was vital in my success. I couldn’t have done it without my personal trainer Laura and her team. She was and still is always there when I need a word of encouragement or advice. Laura’s support and personal attention is what makes Educogym in Corbally so unique. Her confidence in both the exercise and food programme is inspiring. I am really proud of myself. Educogym Corbally has changed my life, my wardrobe and eating habits. It has given me so much more energy to keep up with the kids. I genuinely can’t think of a more efficient and realistic way to tone up or lose weight. I would recommend Educogym Corbally to anyone.” Maria Byrnes

CONTACT: 061 350278 087 9463291

Educogym, Burlington Business Park, Corbally, Limerick Email: Web:



beautiful couplelifewithin a happy

Joan Brennan of Rathkeale and Tom O’Shea of Newcastle West first

met when they were 15-year-old kids, but it took another year, and a

dance in the Olympic Ballroom in Newcastle West for them to start dating. Joan remembers this fateful date so well for another reason. When she

Newcastle West

arrived home that night her mom and dad were up waiting to watch

Joan’s tips for staying together include “giving each other their own

American astronaut, Neil Armstrong, become the first man to walk on

space to grow” and to “be willing to forgive and not judge too harshly.”

the moon. Joan stayed up with her parents and watched the historic moment unfold, not knowing that her meeting Tom O’Shea in the Olympic

Having trust in your partner is essential and Joan’s advice would be to

Ballroom earlier that evening was also going to be a historic moment in

not “throw in the towel at the first hurdle”. Joan firmly believes that “the

her own life.

good times will always win out over the rough times”.

On May 22, 1971, both 18-year-olds, Joan Brennan and Tom O’Shea,

So does Tom ever annoy Joan? She laughs at the question and replies,

became Mr. and Mrs. The wedding was a small gathering of only 20 to 30 close friends and family. Joan comments that to be married at such a young age (18) today is unusual and in fact she would advise against getting married so young. Joan has always told her kids “go and see the world before settling down.” Said Joan, “It was a very different world, and a very different

Joan does herself that might possibly irritate Tom she admits “he’s not too fond of my snoring” Happiest memories in the O’Shea household are many but a select few would be the wedding of their first son, Danny. The weddings of both their daughters and of course firmly in their happiest of memories would

Ireland back then of course. It was expected of the new bride to give up

be the births of all 10 of their grandchildren. As Joan herself says “they

her job and to dedicate herself to being a homemaker.”

were wonderful days”.

Joan and Tom have now been married 42 years and have lived

The day before the couple’s 40th wedding anniversary their daughter

happily in Newcastle West all that time. They have welcomed into their

got married, so on the day of the anniversary there was a big double

family seven beautiful children, Danny, Sylvia, Joanne, Thomas, Kevin,

celebration in the O’Shea household. It was a precious day for them

Deirdre and Daithi. Now the family has expanded even more to include

to have all of the family around to help celebrate their ruby day in style.

10 grandchildren (five girls and five boys) and by the end of 2014 that number is set to rise further with the expected arrival of two more grandchildren. Joan’s best advice for any married couple or any couple about to get married is, “there are a lot of ingredients for a happy marriage and every couple has a different recipe. What works for one can be different for another. The main ingredient is true love.” Joan says that no marriage runs smoothly, working together, and not giving up when times get hard is the main thing. “There will always be some hard times in all marriages, but working together should see those hard time become easier,” she says.

The Details

Wedding Date May 22, 1971

The Dress Joan made it herself. It was pale blue in colour and was covered in white lace. The Wedding Reception Leen’s Hotel in Abbeyfeale. The Honeymoon Ballybunion. One night in a room in The Castle Hotel. As a momento of that happy night the couple, to this day, still have the receipt from the hotel. The cost of the room for one night was £4.60.


“it drives me mad when Tom leaves the teabag in the cup.” As for what

I RGINIAS 46 roches St, Limerick tel: 061 415 418

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Just launched – Fit To Be Tied Program – ideal to shed those extra lbs for your big day Our program is the complete package, it’s unique in that it’s a two structure approach. We help you lose weight and have a qualified nutritionist work with you to manage your food. Our program gives you focus, energy, a great body, and an overall healthy lifestyle First three months – you lose weight Second three months – you tone up and define the areas that are important to you Work outs changed weekly *Post HEN detox week included “Before joining Women’s Fitness Plus I was a little apprehensive as I had never stepped foot in a gym, but as soon as I joined I realised I had nothing to worry about. The staff are so friendly and the atmosphere is very welcoming. I started with the 6 week kick-start programme and afterwards didn’t hesitate in joining for the year because not only had I lost weight but was also starting to enjoy exercise. I’ve since stuck with the gym and I’m delighted with the results. I’m still losing weight and I’m much fitter and healthier. I can honestly say I look forward to going to the gym now.” Lisa Tynan (pictured here)


Women’s Fitness Plus, Unit 8 Courtfields Shopping Centre, Raheen, Limerick Phone 061 303 588 Web Facebook Womens Fitness Plus

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