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How to Plan a Wedding during a Pandemic

How to Plan a Wedding during a Pandemic

Our hearts really go out to anyone who is currently trying to work out How to Plan a Wedding during a Pandemic. These are tough, uncertain times and the overwhelm is real.

I know so many suppliers are doing absolutely everything they can to be as accommodating and flexible as possible – ourselves included of course! And I count myself extremely lucky to have the nicest clients who have made the process of rearranging their Wedding dates as painless a process as possible by keeping the communication open and clear and just generally being lovely. ☺️

As far as adapting and pivoting what we offer as Wedding Photographers. We have restructured how we offer our Wedding Photography services so it doesn’t matter how big or small your Wedding is or whether you want 2 hours or 12 hours covering, you can decide and and we will do absolutely everything we can to accommodate any adaptations or rearrangements as necessary.

We’ve decided to put this short guide together to try and help in any way with the process of planning a Wedding right now. We have absolutely everything crossed that gatherings will be possible again from late Spring and that we’ll all be back on the dance floor before too long. I for one seriously can’t wait to throw some questionable moves in front of a live band at some point in the near future. 💃🏼

  1. Communication
    With each other, with your suppliers and with your guests.
    To adapt the old adage – Everyone is in the same boat. I think it’s more like, everyone is in a boat… Everyone’s boat is very different but there is without doubt a general acknowledgement that things are not normal! Not even close! Your guests will understand that you might need to reschedule, cut the guest list (see #3) or even hold fire for a little while. An option to ease the stress of communicating with everyone constantly could be to set up a simple Wedding Website so everyone can check in on the latest plans without having to be contacted individually? If you’ve already had a couple shoot you could use some of your images from that to create a simple site. Not to be confused with us The Copper Knots, these guys over at The Knot offer free, simple to set up Wedding Websites.
    Keeping the communication open with your suppliers too is key. You’ve worked hard to find exactly the right ones for your special day and I can assure you they can’t wait to work with you when the day finally arrives! Keep them informed of any possible changes and chat to them about new possible dates. I know everyone in the industry is doing everything they can to support their couples in these difficult times.
    Finally and possibly the most important, keep the communication open between you and your partner. Your Wedding, whenever, however it happens will still be a very special, joy filled day.

2. Be Realistic
Don’t hold out until the very last minute to reschedule, everyone will end up being a bundle of nerves! The latest coherent guidance on Weddings can be found on the Guides for Brides site HERE and of course you can find Government guidance HERE. I certainly have my fingers crossed that Summer, Autumn and Winter Weddings will be possible this year.

bride on roof terrace of hope street hotel

3. Work on your Guest List(s)
If you haven’t done so already it’s probably worth having a couple of different guest lists. This can be a good opportunity to pare your list down to only those that you absolutely want to share your day with. Once you’ve got your ‘definitely not getting married without these people around us’ list, this might help when deciding whether to hold off and postpone depending on the updated guidance later this month or go for it as soon as you can with a more limited number. Don’t forget you can always opt to do the legal bit with a small number of your favourite people when it’s possible to do so and plan an epic Anniversary party for a year or so down the line when you know you’ll be able to have a good old boogie! It’s the perfect excuse to get another wear out of your dress too!

4. Consider Wedding Insurance
I realise this might be a little late in the day and I have no doubt insurance providers will have changed their policies drastically over the past year but it’s definitely worth considering.

5. Check the T’s&C’s of your suppliers
Whether you’ve already committed to certain suppliers or you’re still in the process of deciding who to go with, it’s worth having those slightly tricky conversations about what happens if you do need to reschedule. Everyone we know in the industry is being as accommodating as possible but it will certainly help put your mind at ease to know where you stand with each of your suppliers.

6. Be kind to yourselves
These are difficult times and I can only imagine trying to plan a Wedding in the midst of it all isn’t making them any easier. Try and take some time out from it all and if you think taking the pressure off entirely and pushing it all back is the right way to go then do it. And if you’ve already had to push things back a little, you never know, you might end up with a more bespoke day that’s more you by taking this extra bit of time to plan…and replan… We love Whimsical Wonderland Weddings and Magpie Weddings and of course Rock & Roll Bride for inspiration!

7. Keep the big picture in focus
It’s easy at the best of times when planning a Wedding to get so caught up in the minute details that you lose focus of the big picture. Add the pandemonium of the pandemic and who knows what can happen! Try and stop stressing over the tiny details and things you can’t control right now. I’ll let you in on a little secret… no one really cares whether the colour of your chair bows match your Wedding invites or your something borrowed is different to your something blue… or at least they shouldn’t be on your guest list if they do! 😆 It should be about celebrating something truly beautiful with your nearest and dearest. So ditch anything that doesn’t serve you and don’t forget about the truly important aspects of why you are doing this.

8. Have a Plan B
I think it’s becoming clear that things are not just going to be bouncing back to normal in the next few weeks. This doesn’t have to be the end of your Wedding dreams though. There are so many alternative options for you and your loved one. From eloping to having a small and intimate ceremony and a plan to party when things allow or simply holding off for a little while, having a Plan B will certainly take the pressure off and hopefully allow you to enjoy the extended planning period and just build the anticipation for when you finally get to say your ‘I do’s!’

I would love to hear from you if you have any other ideas or experiences to add to this. In the meantime, take care and lets hope for some simpler and more certain times ahead.

Until next time,

Ciara x

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Reasons to embrace a Micro Wedding

Reasons to embrace a Micro Wedding

2020 has been a strange old year and my heart really goes out to all the couples who have had to rearrange their Wedding plans or put them on hold for the time being. It’s not an easy decision to make and we have absolutely everything crossed for our brides and grooms for next year. Like so many others, we are really looking forward to some new normals and believe Micro Weddings are going to be the next big… well micro thing!

Here are a few of our favourite reasons to embrace a Micro Wedding

  1. The Vibes: They’re super relaxed & we love this! With no big, long ‘to-do’ lists still hanging around on the morning of your Wedding. We love a relaxed morning of bride (& groom!) prep. It’s all about having a few glasses of bubbly, hanging out with your besties and preparing for an awesome day ahead!
  2. The Guest List: You get to spend time with EVERYONE! We can totally appreciate that putting your Guest List together is tricky. It’s always going to be. With a Micro Wedding though, you are guaranteeing that you can spend some quality time with each and every special guest who makes the cut as well as each other! (Also you definitely don’t have to invite that weird neighbour or your Mums work friend – everyone on that list will be there for a very good reason!)
  3. The Sums: Having 30 guests is, without a doubt, going to cost less than 130. This also means your budget can stretch further on a cost per head basis. It means you can treat each and every one of your guests to a really special experience. We’re thinking, exclusive use venue hire for the whole weekend, incredible food and wine and of course, a few extra pennies for your honeymoon adventures…
  4. The Formalities: Who says you have to follow the rules? It’s your day! We are big believers in throwing the norms out the window when it comes to your Wedding day. Don’t just scratch the surface of making it personal. It’s your chance to have a day celebrating how flipping well much you love each other and you want to share it with the most important people in your lives! Don’t get sucked into the traps of I have to because it’s a Wedding… If you don’t want to include certain traditions, don’t do them. If you want to wear a purple polka dot dress then do it! If you want to get ready with your wife or husband-to-be and walk into your ceremony together, do it! Keep it real and do it your way!
  5. The Love: Let’s get this straight. What’s it all about anyway? You met someone, somewhere, somehow. You fell in love and want to celebrate this with the people who are most important to you in your lives. Right? We think it’s all about sharing the most fun, love filled, special and memorable day possible with those people.

You can totally rock a Micro Wedding – YOU HAVE GOT THIS!

We have decided to make a big change in how we book Weddings to make things as easy and straight forward and as risk free as possible for our couples. We have decided to charge a simple hourly rate so you have total control over how much or how little of your big/micro day you want us around for! On top of that we are committed to be super flexible so just keep us in the loop and we will accommodate as many date changes, venue changes, partner changes (only kidding -we hope!) as we possibly can.

Just get in touch if you’re planning your (big) well Micro Wedding and we’d love to hear your plans!

x

wedding couple micro wedding
bride and groom
bride and groom portraits
wedding couple portraits
micro wedding
bride and groom kissing
bride and groom on their micro wedding day
bride and groom on their wedding day
bride and groom
wedding couple
micro wedding couple

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Why a Pre Wedding Couple Shoot is the best decision…. EVER!

Why a Pre Wedding Couple Shoot is the best decision…. EVER!

Do you know what every single one of my couples has in common? Go on have a guess…. well, yes alright they’re usually getting married at some point…. but there are a few exceptions where they just want a Photo Shoot…. so no it’s not that….

It’s a FEAR OF BEING PHOTOGRAPHED! And you know what, I have one too! I get it.

In my many years of being a professional photographer I am yet to come across ANYONE who jumps up and down and exclaims SHOOT ME, SHOOT ME… Aside from the obvious potential of that statement being misunderstood…. there are always nerves involved when it comes to photography… even for those who find it slightly less terrifying than everyone else!

STOP RIGHT THERE I say. I know exactly what you need!
My couples look at me in wonder. I have the magical answer to their nightmarish problem…. They know they want beautiful photos so they can relive their day forever….
Why does everyone else look so relaxed and genuinely happy in their photos…
They must all actually enjoy being photographed….
They obviously don’t have the same fears as I do….
Thinks, well, absolutely everyone.
The answer, they beg of me. How can you make me feel less like I’m going to turn into the tin man the second you point your camera in my general direction????
A Pre Wedding Couple Shoot I say
Their faces fall.
You mean TWO occasions where we’re going to have to endure the painful process of having our picture taken….
Abso-bloody-lutley YES

I cannot stress more highly how helpful, important and sometimes even FUN this pre wedding couple shoot turns out to be!

Even if it’s the night before your actual Wedding like these two below….

It is the number #1 way to guarantee you will have one less thing to stress about on your Wedding day! You will quickly realise that I like to spend quite a lot of time hiding in bushes, lying in long grass or climbing on something entirely unsuitable to get the perfect shot. Meanwhile you and the love of your life are busy having a good old cuddle (any excuse is good enough for one of these in my books!), whispering ridiculous things into each other’s ears and generally having a grand old time having completely forgotten that I’m stuck up a high old crumbly castle wall with my camera…

It is an absolute guarantee that you will worry less about your photos on your Wedding Day!

I pinkie promise it!

Ciara x

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Andrea & Dotun // Sopwell House

Andrea & Dotun // Sopwell House

The sun is most certainly back out to celebrate Andrea & Dotun’s one year anniversary and I really hope that there is time in both Andrea & Dotun’s crazy NHS schedules to allow for a little celebrating today. Most definitely not in the way I’m sure they were expecting but I’m sure there will be many many years in the future to make up for it.

I hope some of my favourite images from this day last year can transport you back to a time pre-pandemic when the only things to worry about were co-ordinating incredible outfit changes and making sure no one knocked over the Wedding cake while performing an impressive ‘dance to the Wedding Breakfast’ number!

Andrea & Dotun’s day was incredible. There was everything you could expect from a Nigerian Wedding combined with everything you could expect from an Irish Wedding and the results made for a day full to the brim of emotion, colour, laughter, epic dancing, excellent food and a pair of very cute ducks… a nurse and a surgeon fittingly!

I hope you enjoy the selection of images below and lets hope everyones Wedding plans can get back on track soon!

Stay well, stay safe.

Ciara x

epic wedding sopwell house

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Ben & Sharmila // Ballinacurra House

Ben & Sharmila // Ballinacurra House

Where has the past year gone? It feels like it’s absolutely flown by and here we are wishing Ben & Sharmila the very happiest of 1st Wedding Anniversaries already!

I wanted to (finally) share some of our favourite images from their beautiful day at Ballinacurra House in Co. Cork last February.

I hope you enjoy them and please get in touch with any questions or to have a chat about your plans for your big day!

Ciara

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Wedding at Ballinacurra house