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When most little girls dream about their wedding day they dream about being a princess for the day! And what says princess more than having your wedding in your very own castle!

For a lot of wedding destinations and venues that probably just is not possible but we are so lucky here in Ireland that we have a stunning range of unique castles the length and breadth of this beautiful country of ours. Thus making the fairytale wedding that we have all dreamed of a real possibility.

Over the years I have got to leave the dream also with my couples and have photographed in some of the most beautiful castle destinations. When couples are planning their weddings from abroad, they often book me before they have put any other wedding plan in place.

As a result I am asked what venues I would recommend and where is the dream setting for their special day.

So... I have out together below my top 4 list of Irish Wedding Castles. I would also love to hear from you in the comments below if you have been to any of these venues or whether you have another one to add to the list - I would love to hear from you!!

 

Waterford Castle

Right on my doorstep (I literally live across the road) Waterford Castle set on its own idyllic island really is a dream wedding venue. Long before Waterford Castle was a wedding venue, I played there as a child as it was a family home of a good friend of mine - can you believe owning your very own castle!! As a result I have a romantic nostalgia for this venue and love it every time I go there to photograph a wedding. So if you love the idea of a romantic hideaway that is only accessible by ferryboat then this could be the venue for you.

 

2. Ballyseede Castle

Nestled away in the beautiful Kerry, Ballyseede Castle is a family run wedding venue that has the luxe and grandeur of a castle venue but the personal family touch of a home that is feels loved and lived in. Set on 30 acres of parkland Ballyseede is a true hideaway where you can relax and indulge completely in the princess for a day vibe!

 

3. Adare Manor

For me Adare Manor is the cream of the crop in Irish Castle luxury. For a start the Manor is set on the edge of the beautiful Adare village a real throwback to an Irish country village, complete with thatched cottages and beautiful Irish crafts. And then you have the Manor itself with its sweeping staircase, lavish reception rooms, river walks and the most amazing formal gardens for photographs or even your wedding ceremony. Now that is something to dream about isn't it!

 

4. Castle Durrow

One of my favourites. Dating from 1716 Castle Durrow gives an honourable nod to its past and tradition whilst also offering modern and contemporary luxury. A perfect blend. The sun has always shone each and every time I have been to Castle Durrow and what a place on a beautiful sunny day! With the most attentive staff you are in very good hands at Castle Durrow.

How soon is too soon to start planning your wedding invitations?

siobhan colclough

 

 

The answer to this of course is it is never too soon! How did you know I was going  to say that!! For my own wedding, our wedding invitation suite was one of the first elements of the wedding that I organised and prioritised.

Picking a colour scheme for our wedding through our invitations helped set the tone for the day and gave others involved, like our wonderful florist Colette and idea of what our day would be like; and what colours I really loved.

It also was a great help in bridesmaid dress shopping. We decided that we wanted the girls to all wear different coloured dresses and having s colour palette to work from made the whole shopping experience much easier and enjoyable!!

We only gave ourselves a little over three months to plan our wedding. Invitations needed to be organised so that our guests had enough notice. And once we decided on those, other decisions flowed from that and made planning our day much more streamlined and structured. 

Give yourself enough time to make the right decision. Use Pinterest and Instagram to decide what you like. You will know early on if you are more attracted to traditional design or whether you are drawn to what is modern and new. Once you decide between both of those look at what colours you like. Will they fit in with your day, your choice of venue, yours style of dress? And as you plan the rest of your wedding keep those colours in mind. Carry your wedding invitation with you and use it to guide your decisions on decor, cakes and all the other elements that will, bring your day to life. Use the invitations as a template of your day, what it is you want your wedding to say - stylish, natural, elegant, bold and modern or chic and classic. 

Use them as a guide for your decisions and you can't go wrong!!