Lauren and Chris met once they were 17 and 18, inside a local bar on the students' night. "Our first proper date involved a week later towards the cinema, like the majority of 17-year-olds' dates are!" says Lauren. "We've been together nearly 12 years now."
A PRIVATE BEACH PROPOSAL
Chris proposed in September 2019 around the beach in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. "He waited before the last night from the two-week holiday, which made us at home very nervous," says Lauren.
"He desired to wait until there is no one around the beach, so he pretended he was going to have a few photos. But he kept getting frustrated that there were people about! I'd always said I didn't desire a public engagement, so I think it had been worrying him. When he finally asked I am surprised, even though we'd been together such a long time. The whole thing just felt like this kind of an amazing blur of emotions."
DREAM DRES'S SHOPPING
Lauren found her vintage wedding dresses at FeelTimes online store. "The staff couldn't happen to be better," says Lauren. "I tried on the few different styles but knew I wanted something figure-hugging, having a long train and a lot of lace. Jessie was the gown I chose, and it had been perfect. I also picked a belt along with a cathedral-length veil. I said, 'Give me your longest veil', as I knew I desired to make an entrance!"
ROMANTIC CASTLE WEDDINGS
"We only viewed one venue, that was Ballygally Castle, just beyond Larne in Northern Ireland," says Lauren. "It's right around the coast road, across the beach, that was perfect for us but the photographs. We love its northern border coast, therefore the hotel would be a no brainer. It was also great to achieve the ceremony and reception all in a single place because the winter weather in Northern Ireland could be unpredictable!"
The couple married on New Year's Eve 2021. "We both love Christmas, so marriage over the holidays was amazing," says Lauren. "All from the Christmas decorations and also the open fire within the hotel just managed to get feel so festive. The events staff were great making sure everything ran smoothly around the day. We were so lucky that none of the Covid restrictions in Northern Ireland at that time applied to weddings, therefore we had no cap on numbers and were permitted to dance!" Here
THE BIG DAY
"The whole big day was surprisingly calm and stress-free," says Lauren. "I panicked a lot within the run-up, over minor details, but I also was built with a looming fear the marriage might not proceed as planned because of Covid. We discovered 10 days before the marriage that it could happen, that was a huge relief."
"We got married at 1 pm, so it had been an early start getting all the wedding party ready," says Lauren. "I loved the excitement of everyone within the house preparing together. We were also lucky to use the weather. It was an unseasonably mild day, which helped with getting relaxed photos outside."
"For the ceremony music I chose some of our favourite songs," says Lauren. "I walked in the aisle with my father to ‘Dreams’ by The Cranberries and down again the aisle to 'Friday I'm In Love by The Cure."
After the ceremony, there is a singer along with a drinks reception with mulled wine. "It am laid back," says Lauren. "Seeing everyone laughing and hugging only agreed to be such a lovely feeling after being apart for such a long time."
GREENERY AND WINTER FLORALS
"We went having a lot of winter florals and greenery for the theme," says Lauren. "I love green, so my bridesmaids wore beautiful dark green dresses and our invites had eucalyptus detailing in it."
"For the decor I was lucky the hotel had their stunning Christmas decorations up, therefore we didn't need to do much to create the place our very own. We had chair covers, floral decorations and wreaths as centrepieces."
The couple had two wedding cakes, a rustic three-tier classic cake along with a cake produced from cheese, that was a huge hit. "Our favours were scratch cards, but only two from our 80 guests won!" says Lauren.
"The most memorable moment only agreed to be seeing our different family and friends celebrating together in a single room. It was this type of heartwarming feeling. To be able to have that whenever two years of uncertainty and being apart was priceless. For our evening reception, we were built with a DJ who also did the countdown at nighttime, that was a great way to ring within the New Year."
MY TOP TIPS…
"Don't spend money on things people won't remember," says Lauren. "Also, keep in mind that what you want is simply down to you as well as your partner. Don't take into account the small things around the day, while you won't notice, and merely make sure you take time for yourself to take it all in. Have some time alone if you're able to, and ultimately try to stay calm if you're feeling nervous. I got very nervous throughout the vows and thought I said my husband's name wrong. So, just try to breathe!"
Article produced at: https://www.feeltimes.co.uk/