A Charming Celebration Full Of Festive Fun


Eimear & Mark’s Real Life Wedding

Married on 22nd December 2018


Mark and Eimear first met each other while on a night out in Dublin gastropub P.Macs. As cliché as it might sound, when the two started talking, there was such a connection between them, they knew straight away they were right for each other. 


While on an exciting weekend trip to Budapest, Hungary, Mark took Eimear to Fisherman’s Bastion, one of the best-known monuments in Budapest, located in Buda Castle. A cold winter’s night, while admiring the beautiful city ahead of them, Mark surprised Eimear by getting down on one knee and presented a sparkling ring. Overwhelmed with happiness, Eimear accepted his marriage proposal and from there, they began their wedding planning journey. 


Envisioning their big day together, Mark and Eimear quickly realised they wanted an elegant Christmas themed wedding with lots of burgundy, gold and winter flowers, aiming to combine the joy of Christmas with the excitement of a wedding.

For their venue, Mark and Eimear decided on Kilkea Castle, Co Kildare, as the perfect location to host their big day. The couple fell in love with the venue’s grand castle, knowing it would be the perfect backdrop for a winter wedding. 


As Mark and Eimear were marrying in the middle of winter, Eimear was keen on wearing a long-sleeved dress. Browsing different styles and suppliers online, Eimear eventually visited bridal boutiques. Trying on different looks, Eimear eventually found ‘the one’ at Alice May Bridal Boutique in Kilternan, Dublin. She purchased a beautiful lace Catherine Deane Design which she adored. Eimear’s bridesmaids wore dresses from retailer Folkster, which suited each bridesmaid perfectly.

Mark’s suit was bought from Louis Copeland & Sons, Dublin and groomsmen wore suits from Michael Barrie in Duke Lane Upper, Dublin. The couple decided to go for black ties for a classic and timeless look. ‘Staff from all stores could not have been more helpful and made the process run very smoothly,’ recalls Eimear.


For their wedding decor, the couple worked closely with Eimear’s sister Niamh to further reflect their chosen theme. Wanting their wedding to be festive but elegant, they chose burgundy as the main colour due to its warmth and Christmas feel. Candelabras, ivy, berries, gold Christmas crackers, calligraphed place names and personalised menus occupied every table. The top table was accompanied with burgundy table cloths, napkins and additional floral displays. It was located in the centre of the room so nobody was more than a table or two away from the wedding party, which was an important aspect to the couple. As an added quirk, all tables were named after Christmas movies.

For their stationery, Mark and Eimear’s invites consisted of two cream textured cards with a berry detail, bound together in a brown sleeve that displayed the guest’s names. Sent in a burgundy envelope that was sealed with a gold wax E&M stamp, the address was handwritten in white calligraphy. This theme was replicated across the place cards, menus, ceremony leaflets, table plan, arrival signage, bathroom boxes and cake boxes.


When deciding on food, Mark and Eimear wanted to avoid traditional dishes such as turkey and ham, so opted for slightly different options. Their meal consisted of a starter of confit duck, sautéed forest mushroom, fig and toasted brioche, followed by carrot and ginger soup with orange and parsley. The main course was a choice between a pan-roasted filet mignon of Irish beef with pomme fondant, pressed oxtail and beef shin, burned celeriac and three peppercorn sauce or jerk spiced monkfish with courgette and carrot pappardelle, coriander, crisp pancetta and saffron tomato dressing. The dessert was an assiette of miniature desserts followed by tea or coffee served with petit fours. Mark and Eimear found the monkfish went down particularly well with the guests who chose it as many considered it a unique menu choice.


Mark and Eimear’s wedding cake was sourced in Bradbury’s Bakery in Athy which is famed for their fabulous wedding cakes and also conveniently located close to their venue. ‘The staff were so helpful and friendly all day. We chose a four-tier cake with two chocolate biscuit layers and two rich fruit cake/Christmas layers. We wanted to keep our cake simple with plain white icing decorated with fresh flowers, we even ordered an extra layer so we could pre-box some slices for our guests.’ 

For their wedding flowers, they were provided by Flowers by Maeve Anna based in Mark and Eimear’s local town of Rathfarnham. Alongside Maeve’s guidance, they included burgundy and white roses in all the bouquets and buttonholes, with berries and foliage for an added winter feel. Maeve Anna also decorated each table with ivy and winter berries in addition to floral displays on the main table plan and welcome sign. For their church ceremony, flowers were provided by Liz Ford in Kildangan who did an amazing job.


With so many special moments during their day, it’s hard for Mark and Eimear to pick their favourite moments. Mark recalls, ‘As much as it may sound cliché, my favourite moment was when I turned around to see Eimear at the top of the aisle. She was the most beautiful bride I’d ever seen.’

Eimear said her wedding was the best day of her life and loved every minute. However, one moment that particularly stands out was when she saw Mark smile back at her from the top of the aisle. ‘Walking back down the aisle with Mark as my husband was an incredible feeling and his funny speech later left us all in stitches.’

Eimear & Mark’s Dream Wedding Team

Venue: Kilkea Castle

Wedding Dress: Alice May Bridal Boutique

Bridesmaid Dresses: Folkster

Groomswear: Louis Copeland & Sons and Michael Barrie in Duke Lane Upper

Flowers: Flowers by Maeve Anna

Wedding Cake: Bradbury’s Bakery

Photography: Adam & Grace 

Latest News

Sign up to get special offers and discounts, all the latest wedding trends and access to must-have suppliers!

© 2024 Copyright weddingjournalonline.com – Part of Penton Media Group