Sonia Gleeson, Owner of The Bold One Collective an online modern jewellery store, married IT Consultant at MakoData, Ronan O’Connell in a glamorous summer wedding at Castlemartyr Resort.

Photographer: Anna G

The Meeting & Proposal

We met in college. We both studied Business Information Systems at UCC. We were friends for four years and got together at the end of college. The proposal was really romantic. Ronan surprised me with a holiday to Sorrento. On our way back from a wonderful dinner overlooking the harbour, Ronan brought me up to a gorgeous lookout on the grounds of the hotel Grand Capodimonte where we were staying and got down on one knee. I was totally shocked. The following day he had arranged for a private taxi to take us up the Amalfi coast. It was a whirlwind.

The Beauty Journey

My perfume on the Day was Jo Malone Poppy and Barley. I also wore the Peony and Blush moisturiser underneath. For make-up, the minute I saw Sue Brophy's Instagram page and all her dreamy brides I knew I wanted her to do my wedding make-up. Sue is so unbelievably talented and is such a warm presence on the morning of the wedding. I was thrilled to have her do my make-up.

The Wedding Dress

I tried on far too many dresses, if I’m to be totally honest. I thought I wanted a big dress and then realised I much preferred the fitted look on me. I had in my head exactly what I wanted, and I couldn’t find it so I ended up getting my dress made by Pallas Couture in Australia. It was so special designing my own dress with their amazing team of experts. Getting to pick the structure, materials, lace design, and lace placement was all so exciting. I loved every minute of it. I’m obsessed with little details, I think I spent longer designing the dress than planning the actual wedding. I knew I wanted a very low, open-back dress with straps and a straight across at the front. I loved the look of different colour underlays so opted for a nude blush, and I wanted a very slight element of transparency around the legs with white beading on top. I fell in love with the modern styles of dresses Pallas Couture had created for other brides, so it was lovely picking different parts of other dresses and bringing them also into my own. I ended up adding open-handed gloves/sleeves two months before our wedding as I wanted to add another accessory. I had a long 400cm veil for the church for a little added drama, but I've never really been that into veils and ended up firing it off the minute I came out of the church as it kept sliding down.

The Grooms Suit

Ronan knew he wanted his suit made by Louis Copeland and Sons. He opted for a 3 piece black tux. The lads went for 2 piece black tuxes from Morleys Cork.

The Bridesmaids

My sister Maria, my best friends Karen (maid of Honour), Eadaoin and Niamh and my cousin Grace. I purchased the bridesmaid dresses before I even got my own dress from Shona Joy in Australian. They were a porcelain pink. I really wanted all the girls to feel comfortable in what they were wearing so I picked the material and colour and the girls picked a different dress each from the Shona Joy range.

The Venue

We picked Castlemartyr resort as we fell in love with the old part of hotel and the grounds are absolutely amazing. We loved the mixture of old and modern interiors in the hotel. We had the most beautiful day weather wise and we loved that everyone could enjoy their cocktails outdoors. The staff were fantastic. The food, drinks, the room itself were all amazing.

The Entertainment

We both love music and just really wanted everyone to have a great time. We had Glas Quartet play and Simon Casey singing during our ceremony in the Honan Chapel in UCC. In Castlemartyr we had Ukebox playing during the drinks reception outside, they also played during the dinner. Truly diverse were our wedding band, the lads are mighty craic and got everyone up dancing. The room was buzzing all night. We had DJ and arrange a DJ, Sax and a bongo player/ Percussionist after the band to keep the party  going. They were fantastic; I even got a go at the drums!

Best Decision

Without a doubt, designing my own dress!

Worst Decision

Stressing about little details which all fall into place on the day one way or another anyway. Anything that goes wrong on the day nobody notices, you don’t even really notice yourself your too busy having the best day with your family and friends.

- Gráinne