Monday, 27th September 2010


Myself and Alan arrived back on Sunday from a six day wedding planning trip in Rome, and what a trip it was!

A marathon wedding planning session, an engagement photo shoot, my 30th birthday thrown in for good measure and of course some shopping. I’m still dreaming about walking the cobbled streets admiring the beautiful sights and sounds and of course enjoying the delicious food and wine. I really wish I was still there.

But I’m back home now and it’s down to serious wedding planning. My head is buzzing with wedding ideas!

We arrived at our apartment, just a stones throw from the Spanish Steps, at lunchtime on Tuesday after getting a door to door shuttle service from the airport. A service I would definitely recommend, it cost €25 for the two of us to be dropped right outside our apartment. We travelled in a comfortable air conditioned car with five other people, we were dropped off second and the journey only took 45 mins.

The first thing we did was go for a walk around the Spanish Steps and stop in a cafe for some pasta and a drink, delicious! Then we walked down Via Condotti, admiring the designer shop windows, to Via del Corso, the main shopping street. We saw a sign for Scholars Lounge and decided to check it out. It’s a really nice pub at the end of Via del Corso with well priced drinks and friendly staff in a great location. And best of all they serve Irish breakfast, so we can recommend it to any guests who what their fix of Irish food and drink when they’re in Rome! After a few too many drinks we strolled back to our apartment stopping for some pizza along the way.

On Wednesday our first port of call was St. Isidore’s College, our chosen church, to meet our priest Fr. Louis Brennan. St. Isidore’s is an Irish Franciscan Monastery with a beautiful church facing out onto the driveway. The church is on the smaller side perfect for our 34 guests. The church itself is really beautiful and bright and Fr. Louis was very welcoming and friendly. They only have one wedding a day and college is gated with a nice driveway up to the church so weddings are very private and personal. We fell in love and knew it was the church for us straight away. Fr. Louis introduced us to Aida, the secretary at St. Isidore’s. She was so helpful recommending venues and musicians and she also offered to organise our flowers and to arrange a wedding car. We are really delighted with our choice of church and can’t wait until next July!


Our next stop was Hotel Hassler, a beautiful hotel at the top of the Spanish Steps, we viewed the garden and the roof top terrace. The roof top terrace really took our breath away, the panoramic views are truly stunning and unmatched by any other views in Rome. The terrace fits max. 30 people and is ideal for a small intimate wedding. Unfortunately we may have too many guests for this option.


We then visited De La Ville Hotel next door to the Hassler. Again it is located at the top of the Spanish Steps, a great location only around the corner from St. Isidore’s. De La Ville was recommended to us by Aida and another couple who got married in Rome. I have to say I wasn’t expecting it to be quite as beautiful as it was, with such a nice atmosphere. The staff were very welcoming and the manager Domenico showed us through to a private garden area which he recommended for arrival drinks and then through to a private room just off the garden where we could have our meal and some music. We would have exclusive use of these two areas all night. The only restriction is on late night music which seems to be standard throughout Rome. There is a rooftop terrace on the 6th floor with amazing views over Rome, a great space possibly to finish off a magical wedding night!


We finished off the evening with a tasty meal in Il Giardino di Albino a very relaxed restaurant located down a narrow cobbled street. The pastas were really tasty, true homemade Italian food and the prices are very good too. Do be careful when ordering meat dishes. There was an American girl at the table beside us who thought she had ordered roast pork and not pork spine!

On Thursday we had an appointment to visit Casina Valadier. The villa took our breath away. Casina Valadier is located near the top of the Spanish Steps in Villa Borghese with mesmerising views over Rome. We were shown the side terraces and the central terrace which were beautiful but had expensive exclusive rental costs. We were then shown up the lovely winding stairs to the Impero room, a beautiful room with painted walls and ceiling, which can fit up to 150 guests. The Impero room has it’s own private terrace to the back overlooking Villa Borghese and windows to the front overlooking the city. They proposed to host arrival drinks on the private terrace and then to move inside to an imperial table for our wedding meal. We would have exclusive use of these areas until 12.30am.


On Thursday night we had a really nice meal in Babette’s Restaurant, a lovely restaurant for a romantic dinner near Piazza del Popolo. The starters were so tasty, I had brioche filled with brie and Alan had mozzarella wrapped in Parma ham. We both ordered pasta dishes for our mains, mine was a home made pasta with a tomato and olive sauce and Alan’s was spaghetti ragu. We really enjoyed the meal, the atmosphere was so nice and relaxed in the garden, I will definitely return.

We finished off the night in Gregory’s Jazz Club, it’s only around the corner from De la Ville Hotel and down the road from Casina Valadier so we thought it might be a nice spot to finish our wedding night off with a few drinks and some jazz music. There was no live music on that night but we were talking to the owner and he advised us to come along Friday night to see a great live jazz band playing. We discussed the wedding over a few drinks and they would be happy to accommodate us. The area upstairs had velvet sofas and fits 30 people very comfortably. We were invited to go up and listen to a musician practicing on the piano. So we ended the evening with the club to ourselves having a drink and listening to our own personal pianist.

Friday was my 30th Birthday! We decided to take a day off from wedding planning and walked over the river to Trastevere to escape the tourist crowds. We wandered around the narrow cobbled streets and stopped for lunch in a pizzeria. We shared the nicest pizza of the trip and enjoyed a drink. We did a small bit of shopping on Via del Corso and Alan bough me a beautiful Furla handbag for my birthday! We had reservations for dinner at Casina Valadier so strolled up there enjoying the views over the city at night and enjoyed a very nice meal on their central terrace. Casina Valadier is a really beautiful spot for a romantic meal, the pasta was sooo delicious! The prices are high but you are paying for one of the best views in the city. We ended the night in Gregory’s Jazz Club enjoying cocktails and listening to an amazing Jazz band. A very special birthday experience.

We had arrange to meet our photographer Bella Lunardi on our last day, Saturday, to discuss our wedding photography and to have an engagement session with her. So first thing that morning I went to Toni & Guy to get my hair washed and blow dried, a trial run for our wedding. They were very helpful and did a great job, I was very happy. One tip don’t mention weddings, prices triple! Just make an appointment for a blow dry or up style and have it done in the salon. We met Christina from Bella Lunardi at the Spanish Steps and went for a coffee and a chat. Christina was really nice and put us both at ease. We had allot of fun during our engagement shoot and we’re much more relaxed now about our wedding photographs. Here’s a sneak preview of our engagement shoot…


We had a drink with Christina and her husband after the shoot and then it was sadly time to pack! We finished our last night in Rome in Gusto, I will definitely be returning, the bruschetta, my favourite, was the best we had in Rome sooo good. Gusto has a pizzeria, restaurant, wine bar, cheese bar and cafe. Perfect for any gathering, I think it might be our choice for dinner the night after our wedding. The atmosphere was great and they have live music in the bar at weekends.

Alas our trip had to end, we really did have a taste of la dolce vita and can’t wait to return next summer!
If any fellow brides or grooms have any questions about any of the venues or suppliers I have mentioned please don’t hesitate to contact me. I would be delighted to help.

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Tuesday, 3rd August 2010


I was so delighted to be asked to supply our Butterfly Wedding Stationery for this stunning colour inspired wedding photo shoot featured in the current issue of B Magazine. The beautiful photos were taken by Christina of Brosnan Photographic in The Summerhill House Hotel


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Wednesday, 7th October 2009


A big thank you to everyone who visited our stand at The Shelbourne Dublin Wedding Fair last weekend. We had some great feedback and we’re full of ideas for new designs for the new year.


I have been to the Shelbourne many times but have never seen The Great Room before, to say I was impressed  is an understatement. The Shelbourne is a beautiful hotel with the perfect mix of old world charm and elegance and modern facilities and comfort. The Great room and the rooms leading off it are stunning with exquisite chandeliers and plasterwork. If I was getting married in Ireland The Shelbourne would be at the top of my venue list. I love that you can get married in the University Church St. Stephen’s Green then walk through St Stephen’s Green, perfect for photos, to the beautiful Shelbourne. There’s a certain buzz in Dublin, the thing I miss the most about living in the country, that I think would make a wedding in The Shelbourne unforgettable.


Anyway back to the Wedding Fair, it was a great day with delicious canapes and champagne and the atmosphere was very enjoyable. Franc gave a great presentation with some brilliant tips to make your wedding day extra special and relaxed, I’ll post some tips over the coming weeks. The fashion show was one of the best I’ve seen with bridal gowns by Sharon Hoey which included my favourite designer Jenny Packham and evening wear by Lara’s boutique and of course grooms wear by Black Tie.

A big congratulations to the five luck winners of our Shelbourne Wedding Fair competition who all won a €100 Farrell & Chase gift voucher; Marie-Louise from Dublin, Evelyn from Dublin, Kevin from Dublin, Clodagh from Dublin and Orla from Dublin. Well done! A big thank you to everyone who entered our competition. Please allow 7 days for delivery of gift vouchers.

Any queries? Contact

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Thursday, 1st October 2009


A big thank you to everyone who visited our stand at the Trim Castle Hotel Wedding Fair this past weekend.

trimcastleThere was a great turnout and we had a great response from the brides and grooms to be. The fashion show was great, with Irish Dancers and a soloist opening the show. The chocolate fountain was beside us and went down a treat with everyone, it was so hard trying to resist it for the day!

Trim Castle Hotel is a beautiful venue for a wedding, we were showing in the bar room just off the ballroom with amazing views over Trim Castle. The Castle provides a stunning backdrop especially at night when it’s beautifully lit up.

Finally a big congratulations to the five luck winners of our Trim Castle Hotel Wedding Fair competition who all won a €100 Farrell & Chase gift voucher; Patrice from Meath, Lee Anne from Louth, Fiona from Meath, Aoife from Meath and Niamh from Meath. Well done! A big thank you to everyone who entered our competition. Please allow 7 days for delivery of gift vouchers.

Any queries? Contact

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Wednesday, 16th September 2009


I attended a friends wedding in Markree Castle Sligo last weekend and had to share…

markreecastleIt is the most beautiful and romantic venue for a wedding. We arrived at the castle and attended the ceremony in the charming chapel which is just off the main entrance. The bride looked beautiful and it was such a personal heartfelt ceremony. We then walked down the sweeping stone steps at the back to the garden and enjoyed delicious punch overlooking the formal gardens while being throughly entertained by a barbershop quartet. We were blessed with the weather and basked in the sunshine until we were called in for dinner. For the meal we were seated in the Restaurant. The only way I can describe it is stunning, with amazingly ornate platerwork in duck egg blue, ivory and gold. The food was delicious and the staff so polite and efficient. After the meal we move to the bar where we danced into the early hours. I cannot recommend this venue enough, we were really blown away!

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