Love at first fright! True Love Tuesday are back and we start with the lovely wedding of Emma and Brendan
Dressed up as a fairy Emma Bradley braved the streets of Derry for the annual Hallowe’en celebrations in 2013 – not expecting to find true love in the shape of Dracula!
But despite the fangs and fancy dress it soon became clear that Brendan Bradley was indeed her true love.
It was a match meant to be, as Emma was unwell that evening and nearly didn’t go out. Now, nearly four years later, the pair are husband and wife after they tied the knot this summer.
Just 18 months after the pair met Brendan asked for Emma’s hand in marriage in the beautiful surroundings of the Roe Valley Country Park in Limavady, where he had spent his childhood.
Emma said yes, with an 18ct carat gold vintage style cluster ring from Cooley’s jewelers in Derry city centre, sealing the deal.
They set the wedding date for two years later and as a natural organiser Emma thoroughly enjoyed the process.
“I love organising events in general and I enjoyed doing my research, picking the best vendors. I used wedding apps and Pinterest for inspiration and ideas. I also loved planning the honeymoon and buying clothes for it!”
With June 2017 not too far away Emma started to look for her perfect wedding dress. “I went to a few bridal shops but I finally found the one in Ultimate Dresses in Dungiven.
“I instantly fell in love with the fit and flare Allure gown and especially loved the comfortable fit and sparkle.
“The girls in Ultimate Dresses were very helpful.”
She also took her three bridesmaids on a day out shopping, and they had a great experience in Perfect Day in Lurgan where they found their pale aqua blue gowns.
The groomsmen where kitted out by Tomorrows in Derry in pale grey suits, which complemented Brendan’s darker three-piece.
Sticking to a budget was important for the couple but Emma admits that a few extra special touches did take them slightly over.
“We decided to splash out on a sweetie cart, and had extra flowers in an archway over the chapel door, as well as on a vintage bike outside the church and in the hotel beside the cake. We also had a case with flip flops for our guests to change into for dancing and a piper, both for the guests and us going into the church and again after the wedding ceremony.”
The day was very much styled around a traditional vintage theme, with 120 guests enjoying the ceremony on Saturday 10th June, 2017, in St Joseph’s Chapel in Craigbane, Claudy before a reception at the Silver Tassie Hotel in Letterkenny.
Emma kept to her theme by incorporating vintage style table centre pieces and a vintage bespoke head piece from Couture bridal accessories.
“I choose this theme as I wanted something unique and different.”
Emma said, “The day went amazingly well with no hiccups. It went so fast and the guests commented that it was a great day.
“The highlight of our day was seeing everything coming together after two years of planning and also looking out from the top table watching everyone enjoying themselves. It was also great to catch up with friends and family and it was lovely to relax in the honeymoon suite after an amazing, but long, day.”
The couple jetted off on their honeymoon to Las Vegas for a week before driving to Laguna in California for the second week. “It was a great experience and when we returned from America we then went to Tenerife with family!”
The couple are now enjoying married life whilst they revamp their home.
Looking back Emma wishes she had maybe taken more time off before the wedding. “I was working right up to the day itself as I had five weeks off afterwards, but I think I would advise other brides to take the week off and enjoy the excitement and final preparations.”
She also advises, “Plan a budget right at the start and stick to it – it’s very easy to go crazy with all the wedding ideas if you’re not watching a budget. I would also say to book your venue as soon as possible as hotels get booked up two to three years in advance.
“Finally, on the day itself take half an hour out for just the two of you to relax with each other in private.”
WEDDING SUPPLIERS INFO
Reception : Silver Tassie Hotel
Wedding Dress : Ultimate Dresses
Bridesmaids : Perfect Day
Groomsmen : Tomorrow’s
Hair and Makeup : Syenna Hair and Beauty
Flowers : Sharon Peaker
Décor : Silver Tassie Hotel & Sharon Peaker
Cake : Ivy House Cakes
Stationery : I Do Invitations by Karen McShane
Transport : Lisdale Wedding Cars
Photographer : By Maldjak Photography
Entertainment : The Hit Men
First dance : Van Morrison, Have I Told You Lately That I Love You.