I adored reading this Bride’s story; not only was it entertaining but I feel like I really know her now, and in knowing her, I love the style she chose for her big day all the more. Bursting with bright colors against the regalness of the Castle Durrow, this wedding looks like one amazingly playful celebration that I’m jealous I missed. Lisa O’Dwyer didn’t miss out, and captured every stylish detail for us right here.
From Lisa O’Dwyer… Deirdre and Andy got married on a gloriously sunny and warm early October day at Castle Durrow. Durrow is a historic town deep in the countryside of Laois which is near Deirdre and Andy’s home in County Kildare. Deirdre’s style was influenced by old Hollywood. Her glamourous Jenny Packham dress made her look like a starlet, and the Pronovias headpiece set off her rich dark wavy hairstyle. Vibrant red and berry colors in the bridesmaids dresses and flowers set off the green and red ivy of the castle setting.
The ceremony was at an historic church in Abbeyleix, and the bride and groom set off in a vintage red car. Deirdre and Andy wanted a fun and playful feeling for their wedding, full of music, dancing, and laughter. The guests played games on the lawn while a 1940s style duo sang pre-war era songs in the background.
From the Bride… Andrew and I met seven years ago to the day we married. As Andrew and I are both in the military we had a long engagement (two and a half years) due to the fact we were both serving overseas for extended periods. Funnily enough it wasn’t the venue we booked first but rather the band! Spring Break are a fun 80’s cover band that Andrew and I had danced a night away to when we attended a ball a few years earlier. They were so good we stayed on the dance floor all night and said that if we ever were to get married then they would be our first choice of wedding band. To our relief they were free on our date. With the band secured we went in search of our perfect venue. We chose Castle Durrow in Durrow, Co. Laois as it offered everything we were looking for in a wedding venue, with gorgeous decor, beautiful gardens, delicious food and that feeling as soon as we entered the front doors that we were home. With Andrew overseas I had a lot of time on my hands to think about and develop the theme and overall look we were looking for from our wedding. I was inspired by the 1940s and the pin-up style of the era. We chose a pallet of berry colours, rich purples, red, deep pinks and our wonderful florist, Claire Brazil from Country House Flowers presented us with an eclectic choice of flowers, berries and fruits from which we based our arrangements on. Claire took the vision I had in my head and made it a reality. When I walked into the church, the flowers (and obviously the sight of my husband) took my breath away.
The morning started with my bridesmaids and I going out for an early morning walk around the castle grounds. We had all stayed in the castle the night before and had the closest thing to a slumber party I’d had since I was little. The make-up artist, Christoph and the hair stylists from Mandika in Naas arrived to our stunning stateroom at 0900hrs sharp and prep began. For me, it was so much fun to have my bridesmaids, my mum, my sister-in-law and my adorable niece around me. We laughed, we danced and we drank a lot of champagne! As I am not into matching bridesmaid dresses and I wanted the girls to be comfortable in a style that suited them, each had a different style and colour dress – berry red, pink and coral. My dress was a Jenny Packham gown from Emporium Kalu boutique in Naas. My shoes were a wedding gift from my father, a pair of Jimmy Choos and my headpiece was bought in Spain. Andrew surprised me with a gift of a gorgeous bracelet from Gallery9 boutique in Naas. It was delivered to our room with a bottle of champagne. The dress and accessories were quite simple but I finished off my look with a bold red lip.
I had promised Andrew that I wouldn’t be late on the day so the bridal party and I left the Castle with time to spare!
We had two army chaplains that we have known for years celebrating our mass. It was such a joy-filled ceremony and it was so special to have two priests that know us both so well. Music played a big role in the ceremony with Sirona Strings playing throughout and my Maid of Honour singing the Responsorial Psalm.
We were so lucky that the day was bright and sunny as we had a beautiful vintage red convertible to drive from the church in Abbeyleix to Durrow Castle. Luckily the extra-strong hairspray worked and we both arrived to our reception in one piece. Guests enjoyed the drinks reception out in the garden area and were entertained by the Bugle Babes, a 1940’s style close-harmony trio. A signature berry and champagne cocktail, pimm’s, craft beers and homemade hot and cold canapes were served to the guests as they enjoyed the spectacular garden and castle views.
Spring Break entertained the guests into the early hours with a short break taken at mid-night for a BBQ. The party didn’t stop there; celebrations moved into the residents bar where traditional Irish music ensured that guests didn’t see their beautiful castle rooms until sunrise.
Andrew and I stayed in the Castle for the weekend and left after the weekend for Part 1 of our honeymoon to Bali. Part 2 was skiing in January!
Photography: Lisa O'Dwyer Photography | Flowers: Country House Flowers | Wedding Dress: Jenny Packham | Cake: Denise's Cakes | Stationery: Lots Of Love | Reception Venue: Castle Durrow | Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Coast | Makeup: Christoph Eye Couture | Hair: Mandika | String Quartet: Sirona String Quartet | 1940s Style Singers: The Bugle Babes | Headpiece: Elie Saab For Pronovias | Photobooth: Lucy Takes Photos | Photography - Assistance: Inspired By Love | Rentals: Lullabelle | Wedding Band: Spring Break