Ireland Destination Wedding Newtown Castle, Co Limerick, Ireland
What a sensational trip. Mark will not be quiet about it. Every other sentence starts or ends with “Ireland.” But the truth is, I’m not complaining. I guess you can now say that we are officially Destination Irish Wedding Photographers!
Not only are the Irish people very kind and accommodating, the lovely countryside complements the beauty of the people there with grand landscapes in all directions. With that said, we were ready to take advantage of the finest parts of the Irish west coast for Steve and Mary’s wedding. (Also, we will be posting a separate blog showcasing the highlights from our personal travels).
Mark had photographed Steve and Mary’s friends, Karl and Patsy, a couple years back in which Steve was the best man. Steve and Mary then had their engagement session shot by Mark (almost 2 years ago), and Mark planted the bug in their ear about traveling to Ireland with them to capture their wedding day. Although what seemed like a long shot suggestion, it has become a reality…. and now a memory we will be sure to dote on for many, many years.
The wedding day started off with a crazy jog up a winding road towards the burren (Irish – ‘bhoireann’ meaning a stony place). The Irish drive on the left side of the road. Now, before our trip, every time Mark made a goofy move driving in the States, I would always say, “…Ireland.” (You know, just ensuring he knew what was ahead of us.) Let me tell you — his years of experience driving in New York was a much needed precursor to driving in Ireland. These people take the speeds of the Indy 500 and combine it with roads as windy and as narrow as go-kart tracks. Regardless — we made it to Fuschia Cottage where Mary was getting ready. The houses in Ireland are nearly all made of stone and are accented with bright, bold colors. Against such a green backdrop, these houses looked like gems, each one just as pretty as the next. We then made our way to Newtown Castle for the ceremony (video below as well), which was situated right next to an art college. ISU was great, make no mistake, but these kids have it MADE. I can see the conversations (all in an Irish accent please), “I need some inspiration… I think I’ll go creep around in this 15 century castle for a bit. Or maybe I’ll take a hike up this grand picturesque mountain… or possibly head to the neighboring town, which, by the way, has the most brilliant architecture.” Of course, these aspects of west coast Irish life are probably no more exciting to me than corn and bean fields (… wait… I do find them slightly exciting). And I can only begin to talk about the musical talents we saw across the pond. At the bottom of the castle was a uilleann pipes player which greeted all the guests as they arrived, and continued to play as the bride walked up the staircase (the uilleann pipes are the Irish form of bagpipes, played with the elbow). At the top where the ceremony was held, a 4 string quartet played… and it was all much like a fairy tale. All their friends and family looked down upon them from a balcony, and you could feel so much emotion among everyone. It was a lovely ceremony, much in part of the pastor and his creative blessings, and not to mention Steve’s impromptu vows.
After the ceremony, we headed to the cliffs for Steve and Mary to “Tie the Knot.” I am still fathomed at the ability to walk right to the edge with no barriers. If anything, the Irish are all about getting the most raw experience and I can’t thank them enough for that. I think “contrived” is probably a word the Irish do not use to describe their way of life often. In fact, one of the most authentic places we visited in Ireland was the Vaughn’s Ceili Barn. From the traditional Irish dancing and music to the food, we felt very in tune with the Irish way of celebration.
And here’s the Steve and Mary, who made it all possible! What a great gift to give your wedding guests… I’m sure they will be talking about this trip, like us, for many years.
Wish to see their engagement photos? Click here.
Ireland Destination Wedding Newtown Castle, Co Limerick, Ireland vendors:
Pub Crawl: Gus O’Connors
Getting ready location: Fuschia Cottage
Ceremony Location: Newtown Castle
Reception site: Vaughan’s Ceili Barn
Wedding planner: Anne Lanier Weddings