I married my lovely Russell on 8th Oct 2010. Having only recently received all my images digitally I haven't had the chance to blog it before now. It's only 5 years since we wed, but the industry has grown and changed so much since then! We had only moved back to Belfast from London when we got engaged, bridal blogs were just taking off, and Pinterest didn't exist! Can you even imagine?

Photographer : Dylan McBurney Dress:  Charlie Brear  Venue: The Barking dog  Flowers: Bloom Floral Artists  

I knew I wanted to have the wedding in Belfast and didn't want to travel too far, so we easily decided on city hall for the ceremony. The reception was meant to be in the Titanic Quarter, but we were let down by the venue 3 months before the wedding! Luckily Russ worked in The Barking Dog restaurant, and they came to our rescue. It actually couldn't have worked out any better. The eclectic rustic vibe there was exactly what I wanted, and we barely needed to add any extra decor.  Plus the food there is YUM! 

We had recently gotten our Jack Russell puppy Alba, so we thought it would be fitting to name all the tables after all the dogs owned by our family and friends.  It's a bit cringey to look at now as there are so many (better and cooler) ways to get this done professionally, but I was quite delighted with myself at the time for writing the table plan on a mirror. Ha! I didn't even use a ruler for gods sake.

our Alba x

During my last year in London I had been the showroom manager for The Vintage Wedding Dress Company (now Charlie Brear), so it was my first stop for choosing a dress. Even though I'd tried on a million wedding dresses before (you'd do the same if you worked in a bridal shop!) I ended up going for something that I never expected to suit me! It was a 1920's drop waist backless dress. I wanted a vintage headpiece, so I chose a gold 1920s style piece from an online company called Royst and Aran,  but I don't think they exist anymore.

Working in costume of course I thought I could just whip up a veil myself. I remember it was a really stressful week on Game of Thrones, it was approx 10 days to the wedding and I had a total meltdown at work trying to attach the lace trim to the silk tulle... the amazing girls in the GOT workroom ended up doing it for me!

The colour palette was blue, cream, grey and metallics so I went for blue roses which had to be dyed to get the correct colour. The bridesmaids wore royal blue 1930's style dresses that I had found in Monsoon one lucky shopping trip.

my mum and dad and my 3 gorgeous bridesmaids. 

The most important thing for both of us was that we had an awesome party with everybody dancing. I tried to plan our day like I was planning the best party I could, and not do certain things just because it was a 'wedding'. 

I came across Mark and Chris from Bespoke Music Solutions at a bridal fair and instantly knew they would be perfect DJ's for our party.  Playing on proper vinyl, their taste was exactly what I wanted... everything from Blondie to S Express, you can write a wish list for songs to be played, but to be honest we both trusted them 100% to rock they dance floor and I can assure you that happened! One of my favourite memories is at one point on the packed dancefloor I looked around and all my family and loved ones were dancing their socks off. I knew at that moment we had achieved exactly what we wanted.

The party continued to about 5am at the Malmaison were a lot of guests were staying, and then we had a second impromptu party the next day at McHughes, so it's fair to say the hangovers were as epic as the day itself! We hadn't had the 'confetti' shot on the day so when we were leaving McHughes our fiends made an arch for us to run though.. it was such an emotional moment!

wearing matching t-shirts the next day made by my bestie.

It's so lovely to reminisce about my wedding... It's funny now working in the industry I know sooo much more about whats available, plus the level of talent on offer in NI now is huge.

One thing I really wish was that we'd had a videographer. It seemed another unnecessary expense at the time, but I would love to have a beautiful film to look back on and to show our girls. 

It was genuinely one of the most exhilarating, fun days of my life. Make the most of that special time planning your wedding, don't get stressed and enjoy!

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