Good morning! For those that enjoyed a long bank holiday weekend, we hope it was a good one. I was in Kilkenny with friends for a few days and had a great time! Today, I’m in Co.Clare with a few photographer friends, scoping out a venue for another shoot next week so it’s busy busy around here! I have been looking forward to sharing this outdoor wedding in Ireland with you for absolutely ages and I’m sorry it’s taken this long! Our post schedule is crazy busy and I think we are going to have to start posting more than once a day pretty soon! The moment I read Emily and Lonans story, I was completely taken by them! Emily hails from the United States and met Lonán, in Vietnam. From her Claire Pettibone dress and the beautiful venue that is Ballyvolane House, to their impressively choreographed performance of a dance from Pride and Prejudice – this wedding is one of my all time faves and it captured so beautifully by the ever lovely Christina of Brosnan Photographic. Coincidently, Lonán’s mother turned out to be my very first harp teacher! Isn’t it a small world?!

Outdoor Wedding in Ireland by Christina Brosnan Outdoor Wedding in Ireland by Christina Brosnan

We couldn’t wait to get to know more about this lovely pair and Emily was so kind to tell us more about how they met and decided between the States and Ireland…

“After college, I was working in Can Tho (southern Vietnam) and wanted to move up to Hanoi. Lonán was doing research on music there at the time and needed a housemate to replace a guy who was moving out. I put an ad up on a local expat website saying I needed a flat to stay and he got in touch, and here we are today.”

Outdoor Wedding in Ireland by Christina Brosnan Outdoor Wedding in Ireland by Christina Brosnan Destination Wedding in Ireland by Christina Brosnan_0005

“I was not the type of person to dream about weddings, but when I realized that I wanted to get married I wanted to have it outdoors up in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado where I’m from. This is harder to arrange than it sounds if you don’t own land… and is also expensive! So are the ranches. So those options were out. Also, Lonán has a huge family, and he secretly wanted to get married in Ireland, and I love Ireland too and wanted his family and friends to be able to take part. But, I love nature and so having it outside was an absolute must. We were really lucky with the weather! It was actually great to have gotten married in Ireland because my family and friends who were able to come had a blast. Since there are so many musicians in the family (including Lonán’s mother who is a harpist and has played for the Queen and the US president!) we were able to have a lot of music and sing-a-longs, which wouldn’t have happened in the States. I also think the prices are more reasonable in Ireland if you shop around a bit because they seem to do more package deals.”

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“We are not religious but we were both raised in families who value religion and spirituality in their different ways. My aunt officiated and she had some really great ideas to make our day special. For example, we wanted to include everyone in our ceremony. So, she suggested that each guest come up and place a flower on the ground to make a circle for us to stand in for our vows, which was incredibly special.”

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Honestly, how beautiful was that ceremony?! I also love the bridesmaid dresses and the picture below. Emily had them made by her favourite Vietnamese designer, Hà Trùòng. The colour palette just works so beautifully well and it really helps that they are an incredibly good looking bunch too! Carrie from Best of Buds never fails to amaze me with her floristry, a true professional and the bouquets are just perfect. Actually, Emily had her own bit to say about Carrie;

“Best of Buds- they were absolutely incredible, incredible. Our plan for flowers fell through three days before the wedding. Best of Buds saved the day. They were a godsend and went above and beyond what we wanted. I highly, highly recommend them”

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All couples face challenges when planning a wedding but when one half is from somewhere else in the world or both are travelling a long distance to fulfil their dream, it can be that bit harder. So, we wanted to know how Emily found the planning process when all of her family were based in the States and she had some sound advise for couples here in a similar situation..

“Sometimes I got a little sad that not everyone I wanted to be at the wedding could come because of finances etc. But it’s OK because your day will be wonderful no matter what. And, anyway, it was really incredible how many people did come and for that we were and remain so grateful. For the person in the couple who is more involved in the planning of the wedding; Figure out what is important to each of you about your wedding day, whether it is family, location, type of ceremony, whatever, and then compromise on the things that are not as important. Remind yourself of the reason you are getting married, especially when it’s getting nearer to the time and you may be getting stressed. Ask yourself the question: “Am I getting married because I want the vintage/ bohemian/classic etc. place setting or to have a great party and celebration with the people, and the person, I love? Then, hopefully you can chill out and remember the important things and disregard the insignificant. Also, if you have family and friends who want to help you, take advantage of it because it makes the experience even more special, and it actually took a lot of the pressure off us.”

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One of my favourite things about Emily and Lonán’s wedding was the effort that went into reenacting one of the dances from Pride and Prejudice! I was dying to find out why and how Emily got everyone involved!

“I initially wanted a 19th century costume party for the rehearsal dinner, which I realized was too much to ask of the guests. So, I ‘compromised’ to have the dance–my sisters and mom and aunts all love Jane Austen—and I knew I could make Lonán’s brothers and friends go along with my evil plan because “I’m the bride!” My friends know I’m ridiculous anyways so it was not too hard to make them go along with it. I also had to agree with one of Lonán’s brothers that I’d jump off the 40 foot on St. Stephens Day too, which I’m not looking forward to.

All of the people involved were pretty fast learners, and we had a lot fun practicing. Most were there two days before the wedding so they practiced and we had a ‘rehearsal’ the night before the wedding. I’m a dancer, and two of my bridesmaids are dancers, so they helped out a lot with the teaching. Also, they all made up sayings to help them remember moves like “ditch the bitch” which you probably can’t write here! It actually was also a great way for our friends to get to know each other.”

I am TOTALLY impressed!

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Favourite moment of the day?

“The times where you have a moment of peace to reflect and realize, wow, this is absolutely incredible.”

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The best decision you made?

“To get married! Christina Brosnan was pretty great too, she did such a fantastic job and we look at our photos probably too much. Oh, and the venue was gorgeous and the food delicious (and the cakes!). We really loved everything and felt so lucky!”

I feel slightly overwhelmed by the amount of prettiness! A huge thanks to Emily and Lonán for sharing their beautiful outdoor wedding in Ireland – a real treat for us! Christina from Brosnan Photographic produced another gem and it’s Tuesday which means she will have some more prettiness to share on her own blog today! Get over there!! We will see you back here tomorrow!

Photography; Brosnan Photographic | Venue; Ballyvolane House | Flowers: Best of Buds | Decor: Pearl and Godiva, Brides Mother, Aunts and Bridesmaids |Cakes: The Choux Box | Music: Dublin String QuartetAine Ni Dhubhghaill (harp), Mad Uncle Harry | Stationary: Heather Feuerstein Art | Shoes: Repetto | Dress: Claire Pettibone | Bridesmaid Dresses: Ha Truong

16 Responses

  1. stella marie

    “I initially wanted a 19th century costume party for the rehearsal dinner, which I realized was too much to ask of the guests. So, I ‘compromised’ to have the dance–my sisters and mom and aunts all love Jane Austen

    –Well I say if that is true you should join us at the Jane Austen Centre Online Forum direct from Bath as I personally extend an invitation. Lovely wedding btw and wish you both all future happiness :) Stella

  2. Steph | The Event Crashers

    I can not get enough of this wedding – I keep going back and looking at all the photos and reading all about her day. I love that Emily’s family was so on board with the special dance, too!

  3. Fiona O Shea

    What a beautiful wedding! Simply breathtaking…wonder how they had it outside though since you can’t have a civil ceremony out in the open?

    • Amy

      Thanks Fiona! The couple must have had a spiritualist ceremony which you can have just about anywhere and they’re legally binding as well (I was astounded to find this out when I looked into having my own wedding in Ireland & wanted to have it outdoors!)

    • Lindsay

      Hi Fiona,
      As Amy said, in Ireland, a spiritualist ceremony performed by Tom Colton ( is legally binding and can be celebrated outdoors and on the weekend but the couple might also have had a blessing ourdoors and sorted out the legalities beforehand. But in general, you are right. The HSE won’t officiate a marriage outside of Mondays to Fridays or in unregistered buildings.


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