Rachel and Rodolfo: “Moody Elegance” Intimate Castle Wedding with Gorgeous Jewel Tones!

There is so much to love about Rachel and Rodolfo’s gorgeous castle wedding this past spring! First — legit historic castle. Second – glorious color palette of bright reds, a soft irresistible pink, gold accents and touches of classic white and fresh spring greenery that just perfectly played against the darker textures of the castle and green pastures of the countryside. Third — a seriously good-looking couple with a classic style that exudes elegant and refined.  A stunning floral arch, glistening table setting and adorable bridal party round out the details we’re so excited to share with you today!  Thanks to Aspect Photography for once again delivering some seriously gorgeous shots — make sure to scroll through to the bottom for the gallery and contact us today for the vendor details!

A Castle Wedding

Rodalfo and Rachel met back in 2011 at the hospital — he’s a cardiologist and she’s a cardiac nurse! After dating, Rodolfo sealed the deal with an epic rooftop proposal in Manhattan, complete with photographer, strawberries and champagne, and 100 votive candles! “We chose a destination wedding in Ireland because we had visited several times and fell in love with the medieval castles, the people, and the Irish landscape. We wanted to share that with our friends and family.”  Hosting their wedding in a castle was the natural choice for the couple.  “It was enchanting, luxurious, and the most beautiful authentic medieval castle,” recalls Rachel.

The Details

We are so in love with Rachel’s look! Her gorgeous Pronovias Atelier (HELIO 2019) gown’s silhouette was a smart and beautiful choice for the Irish countryside, the beading detail offering a pop of vintage elegance. She paired her gown with a pair of Miu Miu heels (one of our fave brands!) and gorgeous handmade crown and earrings by Maria Elena. Rodolfo’s classic tuxedo was elegant and classic, perfectly suited for their castle wedding. We love how Rachel also added a bit of DIY detail into the day, designing and creating the flower girl sashes herself for that pop of jewel tone!

The color palette took inspiration from “moody elegance” as the theme. A brighter interpretation of the summer jewel tones shown through in gorgeous shades of ruby and amaranth, softened perfectly with flamingo pink and blush tones, plenty of summer greenery to play against classic white. Navy and slate grey served as neutrals, while pops of wine and mulberry on the purple tones perfectly nodded the moody vibe and castle setting and pops of blue. Gorgeous candelabras and taper candles created the perfect romantic castle ambiance while the gold-detailed place setting added warmth and elegance. Irish details came through on food and drinks, including Irish beef and locally sourced fish with a champagne and mead toast. Rodolfo is originally from Mexico, so the groom’s featured drink included tequila!

The ceremony was an inter-faith traditional ceremony. Rodolfo’s and Rachel’s nieces served as flower girls and they made sure to include a remembrance for loved ones who have passed, Irish poetry, biblical scripture, and hand-written vows. “The best part of the day were reading our vows, taking pictures in the cow pasture after the ceremony, dancing and winging out with our guests and looking at the full moon after the reception!” recalls Rachel.

A Piece of Advice

“Don’t try to plan a destination wedding without a wedding planner who knows the area! It was challenging trying to envision a space I’d never seen in person, making sure we had everything we needed at the venue, all the aspects of getting cleared to be legally married in Ireland…making phone calls around time zone differences, choosing between so many talented vendors!”

Rachel and Rodolfo — congratulations on a truly gorgeous wedding day! We wish you a wonderful life together as bright as the full moon and many more toasts and dances together!

Sam & Benji: STUNNING Cliffs and Ruins Wedding with Blush & Peach Details

You may recognize this photo from our homepage! Sam and Benji’s wedding day was the best of what Ireland has to offer: incredible one of a kind backdrops, breathtaking views over the Atlantic, romantic ruins for their ceremony location, historical and unique backdrops of The Burren for portrait shots and some seriously perfect style. Add a sunny day to the mix and you have a really jaw-dropping gorgeous gallery beautifully captured by Butterfly Photography.

The Details

Sam and Benji wanted a memorable wedding that encompassed everything Ireland has to offer.  Gregans Castle served as home base for the day. As Sam got her hair and makeup done, Benji took a quick trip to the nearby Burren for some writing inspiration. How amazing to sit next to the Poulnabrone Dolmen, one of Europe’s most ancient historical sites! A relaxing morning gave way to a glorious sunny day as the couple made their way to nearby ruins for their bespoke spiritual Celtic inspired ceremony. They said goodbye to their guests and took a tour of the area with their photographers for some breathtaking portrait shots at the Cliffs and nearby countryside — absolutely stunning and showcases the variety of terrain and colors this part of Ireland has to offer! No quintessential Irish wedding is complete without a pint of Guinness at the local pub.

The Style

We love Sam’s look from head to toe — you can tell she felt so comfortable and beautiful in her dress and it really shows in the photos! Her hair and makeup on point, and simply accessories with diamond earrings for an effortlessly beautiful look. Benji was ever so handsome in a classic suit — love the navy color against the Irish backdrop! Smart choice! When playing with your color palette, keep in mind the terrain and backdrops you’ll be working with — will it be predominately green or are you working against water? The beautiful blush and peach tones worked in Sam’s bouquet and makeup worked beautifully against the blue and green tones of the Cliffs and Burren countryside. The softness of the flowers — peonies are gorgeous! — worked great to balance out against the rocky textures of the ruins and coastline!

Reliving the Memories

Sam and Benji — we wish you a wonderful life together full of more sunshine and gorgeous memories!!

And as a super special surprise for Sam, Benji created this video on his own for their one year anniversary and we’d love to share it with you! “Our wedding in Ireland was the best day of our lives, it turned out even better then we could have imagined. And while many of our family and friends were not physically present, we carried their love with us throughout the day. The following day we all went into Doolin to watch Blackie O’Connell perform trad music at McGann’s Pub. The pub was packed, but when a few seats opened up in front, Blackie motioned for us to sit closer to the band. Once we sat down, he introduced us to the crowd and then asked if we had our first dance yet. We responded with ‘no,’ and he replied ‘well, then let’s give you one.’ They played us “If I Never Spend a Morning Without You,” which is the song featured in this video.”  Click over to the youtube video here to check out Benji’s super sweet gesture and make sure to crank up the volume to get the full effect. Tip: grab a tissue!


Planning Advice: UNPLUG those phones!

Photo courtesy of Hannah Way Photography

Without a doubt one of the biggest pet peeves for wedding industry professionals is the overzealous wedding guest photographer. It’s become an almost obsessive race to social media platforms, who can snap the perfect filtered shot first and share it with the world.  In theory, a great idea. But as many great ideas often do, falls desperately short on practical application.

Texas-based photographer Hannah Way Hannah Way Photography recently posted a shot she took at a client’s wedding with a caption that’s since gone viral. It’s pretty self-explanatory, and adds to the (already long) list of other photos arguing for the case on hosting an unplugged wedding.

The Argument To Unplug

The first and most glaringly obvious is the guests gets in the way of the professional photographer you’ve hired (and spent a good amount of money on).  As Hannah posted in her post, “…not only did you ruin my shot, but you took this moment away from the groom, father of the bride, and the bride. What exactly do you plan on doing with that photo? Honestly. Are you going to print it out? Save it? Look at it everyday? No. You’re not. But my bride would have printed this photo, looked at it often and reminisced over this moment as her dad walked her down the aisle on her wedding day. But instead, you wanted to take a photo with your phone, blocking my view, and taking a photo that you will not use.” 

A compelling argument to make.

Especially for destination weddings, you’ve purposely chosen a location for its spirit, natural backdrop, unique details and although the temptation to document every moment is there, there really is no substitute to fully immersing yourself into the space. When you’re busy snapping every shot you’re really cheating yourself out of that experience and it’s a shame. Encourage your guests to put the phone away, and invite them to experience your destination wedding in Ireland with all of their senses! They’ll remember it far better than any photo!

Getting Your Guests On Board

You’re proud of the location and details, all of the hard work that’s gone into months of planning and you’d love to delight in your guests’ reactions and admiration. And the reality is, asking them to not bring their phones at all is probably not going to happen.  Here are some ideas to help you structure your wedding day so your guests can actually enjoy the day (and your photographer can capture it all beautifully!):

  1. Things like wedding hashtags are great but can send a confusing message to your guests; consider not encouraging copious guest photography by eliminating this wedding trend.
  2. If asking them to unplug completely for the day probably won’t happen, think about asking them to unplug for just the ceremony itself, then letting loose at the reception. Keep that moment (and point of the whole event!) sacred and all attention focused on the importance of your vows rather than getting the perfect angle and filter.
  3. Display a sign at the entrance to your ceremony space asking guests to keep phones on silent and no pictures during the ceremony.
  4. Ask your celebrant or wedding coordinator to make an announcement before the wedding begins.
  5. If you really think it’s not a possibility, have a frank conversation with your guests before the day asking them to be discreet and draw some clear boundaries: avoid the aisle, standing in the aisle at any point is completely out of the question, do not stand up or reach up/out during the ceremony, etc.
  6. Limit the devices to smaller iphones — literally no reason to be bringing an ipad to a wedding to take pictures and leave the Nikon for the sight-seeing!
  7. If you’re hosting your wedding in a particularly amazing location (Cliffs of Moher comes to mind), asking guests to keep their phones away may not be realistic. Instead, try building in some time for them to have with the ceremony space and scenery before your ceremony starts so they can document the day as they like. Then have your celebrant make an announcement to put them away before your cue to walk begins.

Remember, this is your wedding day and you deserve to have the attention and adoration on you both and what you are doing: joining your lives together. Flowers and castles are wonderful, but they are not the important part. Send a clear message to your guests and encourage them to engage with one another and take in the environment you’ve worked so hard to create.

Hannah really says it best: “You are important to the bride and groom, you would not be attending the wedding otherwise. So please, let me do my job, and you just sit back, relax and enjoy this once in a lifetime moment.”

We couldn’t agree more.