A 4-star boutique Hotel situated in the heart of the Boyne Valley, Bellinter House is a sanctuary of opulence and elegance. This splendid Georgian mansion, built about 1750, was the location of Meghan Murphy and Paul Creamer's wedding on the  18th of August 2022. Capture by Hammond Photography.

The couple met 17 years ago, Meghan was in secondary school and found herself in a temporary retail job over the Christmas holidays. Little did she know, that this seasonal job would lead to a fateful encounter that changed her life. "Paul was a coworker whose initial impression left me thinking, "Well, we are not going to get along!” But as time passed, we got to know each other and Paul grew on me. Ahead of the staff Christmas party, during casual chatter with a coworker, she dropped the bombshell that her eyes were set on Paul and she planned to hit on him at the Christmas Party! In a moment of sheer panic, I blurted out the first thing that came to mind: "Oh, funny you mention Paul, because, uh, I am actually seeing him” Cue the desperate scramble to salvage the situation, I called in a friend for a Hail Mary and asked her to get me Paul's number! And just like that, a moment of sheer panic turned into the beginning of a beautiful (albeit slightly awkward at the beginning) love story."

The engagement took place in Sydney, Australia, with Meghan being five months pregnant at the time with their first baby. Paul had orchestrated a day filled with touristy escapades all around Sydney to try and find the perfect place to propose. Fast forward to Bondi Beach, Meghan's feet were swollen, her back was protesting, and she was just about ready to trade sightseeing for a nap on the sand. But Paul had other plans – namely, a scenic stroll along the cliff's edge. The two relaxed, nestled in a rocky cave overlooking beautiful Bondi when suddenly, Paul dropped to one knee. And this is where the stories diverge! "In my version, Paul, overcome with emotion, found himself at a loss for words, leaving us in an awkward silence that felt like it was never going to end! Sensing his struggle, I took matters into my own hands and screamed "YES!" before he could even utter the question. Paul, on the other hand, would have you believe that I grabbed the ring out of his hand, leaving him to wonder if he had even managed to pop the question at all. But hey, semantics! Regardless of the differing accounts, one thing remains true: I said yes, and it was a beautiful moment filled with love, laughter, and a healthy dose of comedic timing. A moment I will cherish forever!"

Meghan's beauty journey began the year before, she trialled different products and make-up and eventually settled with Embryolisse and La Roche products to prep her skin. For the makeup, she used Nars, Mac and Charlotte Tilbury. Rachel Acton from Michelle Montgomery Studios in Dundrum was the makeup artist she did an incredible job! "I went to MS skin clinic during the year leading up to the wedding and had my skin evaluated. Klaudia was incredible and knew exactly what I needed to ensure my skin was fresh and rejuvenated using a signature skincare program." Her signature scent was a mixture of Jo Malone Nectarine Blossom and Honey Cologne and Jo Malone Wood Sage and Sea Salt body cream.

The process of choosing the wedding dress did not take too long, Meghan tried maybe two or three wedding dress boutiques before her sister Edel mentioned Love Ellie Bridal in Cavan Town.  They had both seen the stunning Vera Wang gown the moment they walked in and knew it was the one. "When I tried it on we both cried! This dress was made for me, it only needed some slight alterations in the length and to be taken in slightly. The store ordered me extra fabric so I could have custom detachable sleeves made which I wore for the ceremony."

The groom and the groomsmen we given free reign to decide on their suits, the best man had the pictures of the bridesmaids's dresses so he knew what would work and what wouldn’t. They purchased all of the suits at Diffeneys in Dublin. Meghan's only input on the groom's suit was that he would have a different-coloured waistcoat and coat. Once they decided on what suit Paul would wear they sent her pictures to give it the final ok!

Meghan's bridesmaids were her dearest friends Ruth and Jess and also her sister Ciara.  "I wanted them to feel comfortable in their dresses, especially for Ruth who wasn’t long after having her baby, so layers, length and flowy textures were factors I considered I had the style and colour of the dress in my mind. I struggled for a while to find exactly what I wanted until one day It just popped up on my social media. I couldn’t believe my luck!"

The ceremony was short and sweet, relaxed, funny and full of love, tears and laughter. "My favourite part was when my sister Michelle read a poem from my dad's poetry book, he had recently passed away so this was a special moment from him to me. Something that kept him in our hearts in a way that was unique to him. Also, one of the groomsmen Glen, our long-time friend, had a little skit planned before we said our I do’s he made up hilarious vows for us to agree to, and he had everyone laughing!"

The couple came across this venue when they first began the search years ago. Meghan fell in love with the stunningly weeping beach tree with a perfect arch. "I knew straight away that’s where we would be married and thankfully the rain held off for us to do so." As she was in makeup the morning of the wedding the wedding coordinator came in and said they may have to have the wedding in the nunnery due to the rain! "I said no let’s keep to the plan! Come rain, hail or snow I was going to be married under that tree!" The entertainment was a band called Off the Wall, who also did a DJ set. The couple chose them because the best man Jeff owns recording studios and has strong links to good bands so he recommended them. They did not disappoint!

Regarding the best decision, the couple had to say, "Keeping the ceremony outdoors was certainly the best decision"

Regarding the worst decision, Meghan had to say, "My worst would probably be not giving a speech, I know traditionally the bride doesn’t give a speech but our wedding was not traditional and looking back I wish I had given a short speech, especially because we recently lost our dad but I felt I had so much pressure on me already I didn’t want extra stress."

- Gráinne