THE WATERLILY WEDDINGS JOURNAL

Destination weddings in Ireland and DC/MD USA. Your Irish wedding planner – styling and coordination to die for weddings since 2006. Based in Dublin and Maryland.

2021 Featured Wedding | Megan & Brandon: “Romantic Rustic” Irish Adventure with Rich Jewel Tones

As we enter this holiday weekend, we are so thankful for so many things: thankful for health, thankful for our clients, and thankful we are able to produce exquisite dream weddings in Ireland once again! Covid really through everyone for a loop, but Megan and Brandon’s incredible destination wedding will give you hope, inspiration, and excitement that although your dream day may have had to wait a little, it is here and everything you imagined it would be.

Every single detail about this wedding is absolute perfection, from the backdrops to the flowers, the bridal party to the finer details. Megan and Brandon’s wedding will take you on a journey throughout Ireland: her soaring cliffs, hauntingly beautiful medieval ruins, lush landscapes and cozy village pubs. It is full of gorgeous florals and lots of special details, and a bridal session the day before you’ll definitely want to check out, all beautifully photographed by Epic Love Photography. Here, is their story….

The wedding day was a perfect combination of more breathtaking scenery and a cozy intimate atmosphere. The bespoke ceremony was full of Irish traditions including the handfast — we’re obsessed with the classic knot pattern and Irish colors of Megan and Brandon’s custom-created handfasting chord. Emerald green would continue as a main color focus throughout the venue spaces, accented with more gorgeous ruby red tones in the flowers and gold. The bridal part wore stunning velvet ruby dresses and the custom photo tie clip Brandon wore was such a beautiful personal touch for his look. In addition to their portrait session, Megan and Brandon wanted to incorporate a first look on their their day — backdrop being stunning romantic ruins.

 

Getting To Ireland (Finally!)

Megan and Brandon met about five years ago on Tinder. When it was time for wedding planning, Ireland became a quick first choice. “We knew we wanted to have our wedding be intimate and somewhere that felt magical. My family has Irish roots and we had visited a couple times when I was younger,” recalls Megan. “Ireland has always been my favorite place I’ve visited and I loved the idea of having our wedding somewhere so special to me and my family. Luckily, Brandon was just as excited about the idea, especially after seeing some photos of past weddings planned by Waterlilly.” They knew they wanted to incorporate the iconic Cliffs of Moher into their day. At first, a ceremony on the cliffs was planned, but the cozier and quaint castle tower seemed a perfect fit for the intimate wedding (and weather!). Breathtaking photos at the cliffs followed immediately after their ceremony instead. The reception needed to be a pub to get the cozy, rustic feel they wanted to create for the day. The rustic feel of the barn with the string lights hanging above paired perfectly with the table decor we had in mind. All of the elements came together to create the most magical, welcoming vibe.” 

The Details 

The vibe of the day was “romantic rustic.” We wanted to have a traditional and timeless feel, with a fairytale undertone. We created a very inviting space that felt easy and inviting so the guests could feel relaxed and focus on immersing in the landscape and environment rather than on formality. “I feel like that is exactly how Ireland is! You’re surrounded by absolutely breathtaking views everywhere you go, then you walk into a pub and it’s so laid back and inviting with the greatest music. That’s what I wanted our wedding day to be,” says Megan. As for the colors, the blue and green tones of the Irish landscape played in heavily when conceptualizing the color palette and details for the day. “We knew we wanted to incorporate red to contrast the lush green landscape of Ireland. From there we wanted to keep the color scheme toned down and romantic – blush, green, dark navy. My bridesmaids wore red velvet dresses which were absolutely gorgeous against all of the green and worked so beautifully with the romantic tone of the day.”  This is a wonderful example of using rich jewel tones to amazing effect in Ireland, no matter what the season. You cannot go wrong and the colors and tones will always photograph absolutely perfectly.
We love the bridesmaids dresses — the velvet was such an elegant and textured tone that looks beautiful and that ruby red is absolutely stunning (and universally flattering). The men in navy suits with tweed accent are perfect against the lush green landscape. We love Megan’s mom’s dress as well — a wonderful way to interpret the day’s theme and color palette! Leaning into the ruby tones quite heavily for the flowers is a smart way to instantly create that lush and romantic vibe when dealing with a very rustic backdrop like a pub or barn. Using softer neutral tones like in the cake is great to help create dimension for the overall presentation, and the pops of emerald green and gold again bring the overall color scheme full circle.

Favorite Moments

We decided to do a “first look” session two days before the wedding while we were in Northern Ireland and it was so nice to have that day to ourselves without rushing between locations and worrying about our guests or time restraints. We were able to spend a few hours in NI getting amazing photos and seeing breathtaking views we wouldn’t have seen otherwise, which then made our wedding day so much more relaxed. We were able to truly take in each location and enjoy being there together.
The morning of the wedding, while the girls were getting ready, we looked out the window that overlooked the ocean and there was a rainbow right in front of the cottage. The whole morning was so relaxed and taking in the views while getting ready for our wedding could not have been more perfect. When we arrived at the ceremony and saw the space for the first time we were blown away and will never forget it. It felt like stepping into a movie. While we were standing in front of the fireplace and our celebrant was welcoming everyone, a couple butterflies had made their way in and were fluttering around. Fairytale vibes were truly achieved. It’s so difficult choosing just a few moments as favorites, the entire day was perfect. But our entire experience with the team at Vaughan’s was so lovely and dancing with our friends and family while the band played was so memorable. It was so different from any reception anyone had been to. The band hadn’t played for over a year due to Covid, so it was truly special for everyone.

A Piece of Advice 

The day is meant to be a celebration of you, so do what makes you two happy and don’t worry about the rest! You don’t want to look back and wish you had done it differently. Keep it small if you want to! It was so nice to have an intimate group of our closest family and friends to share the magic with. Also… a planner is so, so worth it! Michelle made the planning process seamless, and I would have been so stressed on our wedding day without her. 

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