Tara’s Wedding

It was so lovely seeing all of your lovely comments from Kerry’s recent wedding blog post (HERE if you have not yet read it or HERE to watch her video). I decided to share mine too.

I mean who doesn’t want to relive their day and have an excuse to look through their wedding pics and watch their video! We plan and pay enough for the big day why not share it!? So here goes . . .


We got engaged on my 26th Birthday the 11th of April 2014 and set a date to get married the following May. Chris originally wanted to get married in the Jan but I didn’t think I would have enough time to plan and liked the idea of a spring weddding.

The venue was the most important part for Chris, that and the food. After that he wasn’t overly fussed (within reason). We looked at three venues but knew our dream one was Tullyveery House just outside Killyleagh. We had been to a family friends wedding there the previous year and had the most spectacular day, yet was the kind of venue where you could really make it your own and put your own stamp on it.


It is 2 minutes from Chris’s family farm and a 5 min drive to my parents house so you couldn’t get anything handier. It was also really special as we were building our new home at the time on the Tullyveery Rd and you could see our new build from the venue and from the walled garden where we said our vows.

We had our whole day at Tullyveery House, the service and the reception. I had my heart set on an outdoor wedding in the walled garden as I really wanted a relaxed and personal service. Everyone thought we were mad. It was torrential rain the night before our wedding, we had a casual rehearsal after we had decorated the marquee. We did a run through in the barn of the courtyard which was our plan B for the service should it rain. We were both determined it would be fine on the day and we went on to dinner and drinks with close friends and family.

Sure enough with a lot of positive mental attitude and a few prayers said it was the most beautiful day!

Tullyveery House is nestled in the Co.Down countryside close to the shores of Strangford Lough with views of the Mourne Mountains. We had access to the whole venue, the house, courtyard and grounds which are immaculate.


Colin the owner and Heather who is front of house could not have been more welcoming and accommodating to any requests. They kept us at ease so we need not worry about the day as they had everything totally under control at all times. This allowed us to enjoy our day to fullest and let them take the lead as all of the work planning and details were meticulously revised.


Chris is a Turkey farmer and so it was only natural we wanted to have a Turkey dinner. A bit funny in May perhaps but with a lot of farmer and rugby lads invited we didn’t want anyone going hungry. That was most definitely not the case with Jane’s Kitchen in charge of the meal and the canapés.

Jane’s team worked seamlessly with Tullyveery and Balmoral who ran the bar. Their staff were so polite and professional and the food was outstanding from start to finish. Jane was a pleasure to work with and really helped us shape the day into what it was.

We had butternut squash soup to start, a turkey dinner and a trio of desert. Jane also had a BBQ with chips for our evening guests, so no one went hungry.


During our service we had a registrar initially for the legal part and then we had a blessing which was carried out by Chris’s uncle. For us this is made it so personal and as well as being outside having a very relaxed and casual feel about it this really set the tone for the day.

We had planned the service and chosen the songs but had no idea what his uncle would say but it was perfect. Accompanied by vocals from Lydia and our pianist Joel. I think music is so important as it really sets the tone and creates the atmosphere.


After the service all of our guests joined us in the courtyard for a Pimm’s reception, Tea/coffee canapés and tray bakes. We had John Lynas (Jonny Bravo ) playing in the background, it felt like a sunny Sunday Jazz Party.  He also joined us with his 7 piece band (Jonny and the Riviera) for the reception and got the party going. The dance floor was always busy and we didn’t want the tunes to stop.



A bit like the relaxed day I wanted a stripped back cake to reflect that. It was my Pinterest cake of dreams made by my sister in laws friend Michelle. I sent a few pics of styles I liked and she created this masterpiece!

It’s called a naked cake. Not only did it look fab but it was delicious too.


It was reading blogs and using Pinterest where I found my inspiration for our theme and ideas. The words I would use to describe our day would be a relaxed country wedding with a farming and lavender theme. Courtney from Petals and Pots was a total gem. I gave her pics of the lavender bouquets I liked and inspiration for my bouquet and she created just that.

Each bridesmaid had plain lavender and my bouquet had natural tones and lavender. I also painted plant pots grey using chalk paint and Courtney potted these all for me with Lavender plants for our centre pieces. These also doubled up as gifts for friends and family who helped.

A family friend made the button holes which incorporated lavender and dried wheat from the farm. She also made this entrance arrangement which everyone commented on.



We saved a lot on decor by doing it ourselves. I found lavender bunting in Sainsbury’s and watched it for weeks until it went into the sale and then I bought the lot! We used this with ivy to dress the marquee.


I had upcycled a side table for the house we were building and we used this for our guests to sign the guestbook.

I bought wicker light up hearts discounted in Primark and these became our backdrop. Our tables were all circular tables as I felt it was more sociable. A few of these were then taken away to clear space for the dancefloor.

The tables themselves were white tablecloth’s finished off with grey table runners my mum made. We finished these off with lace trims. The tables were then dressed with grey and white napkins to continue the theme.

Gillian my friend made all the stationary so the Menu and table names all matched the fonts from our invitations and order of service. I then made DIY Menu holders by gluing corks together.

In the plant pots I had the table names made out of wood. These were in the shape of cows with their breeds engraved on to them. These were done by ‘piece makers’. Joanne also made my table plan board.

To carry the farming theme Chris wanted the breeds of cattle for the table names as they have beef cattle on the farm. Trying to incorporate that and not have it look tacky was difficult but I think this turned out really well and was a bit different.

We also had a friend bring their vintage tractor which was also grey and it became a great focal point for photos and worked really well with the grey bridesmaid dresses and lavender theme.



We made these ourselves. Kerry painted our names in water colour and we scanned this and set up the layout on the computer. My friend Gillian then set these all up for us and printed the invitations, order of service,menus and RSVP cards.


Each invitation was bundled up and tied in the same fabric as the table runners with a twig of dried lavender and twine. I also found stick on grey pearls in the pound shop and we added these to the invitations too. I really loved them and have one framed as a keepsake.


We didn’t have cars, as we were so close to home and we were in the same venue this was an unnecessary expense. Allowing us to get things like a wedding video. family friends Drew and Paul who I grew up with drove my Dad and I and Mum and the bridesmaids to the wedding with ribbons on the jeeps.


The boys surprised me turning up in these hats too as my drivers for the day! No one was going to see me arrive so I wasn’t really bothered we didn’t have the fancy cars this meant so much more as their Dad drove my mum on her wedding day.

Chris and his bridal party arrived by Tractor and trailer. As it was only a 2 minute journey. It made for a pretty good entrance!

THE DRESS: ‘Halifax’ by Enzoni



Dessy 2897 Taupe – my mum added a trim to the belt of these which we bought at the fabric shop in Carrickfurgus. Mum also sewed the same trim on to my niece Erin’s flowergirl dress which was from BHS.



MAKE UP: Lauren Montgomery– My chum from primary school. Lauren did all of our make-up including my mum. She helped make the morning as stress free as possible and was around for touch ups of lippy but my make up did not budge all day! Lauren also did a reading for us and spoke beautifully.

HAIR: Marcus, Studio M. Marcus gave me the exact look I was going for, something relaxed but that would hold all day! He is my hairdresser anyway so it was like any day at the salon chatting away all morning. Making it very relaxed atmosphere. The flowers were by Petals and Pots.


THE SUITS: Herbie Frogg


PHOTOGRAPHY: Esther Irvine Photography Esther is a total professional. I know Esther from school and growing up so it was so comfortable having her about. The thing is you wouldn’t even know she is there so you just get on with your day and she captures the most beautiful natural shots. Below are our posed ones but the ones she got of us mingling with our guests are my fav’s. Some really lovely ones to cherish.



VIDEOGRAPHER: Paul from Hatch Weddings

Here is our wedding video highlights VIDEO which I think really sum up the whole day. Paul captured it all perfectly and worked so well with Esther our photographer. So we have still and moving images of our day.



I have loved going through all of these pictures and reminiscing about our day.

I hope you enjoyed this blog any questions please just ask.
Tara x


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