Inside My Wedding: See inside Co Tyrone couple’s big day at the Four Seasons Hotel in Monaghan

A Co Tyrone couple have told all on their stunning wedding day at the Four Seasons Hotel in Monaghan.

Claire Ferguson, 30, and her husband Kieran Hughes, 31, had their big day on December 11, 2021 at a service in Clonoe followed by a beautiful reception.

In Be ‘s weekly feature ‘ Inside My Wedding ‘, couples are delving into their special day to give you some tips and ideas for your big occasion.

The MRI radiographer and sales rep met at university in Belfast, having their first date years later in 2015 before getting engaged in July, 2020.

Here is all about their special day during the festive season!

Walking up the aisle

Tell us all about your wedding day!

It was just the best day and weekend from start to finish. While in the moment, it feels very surreal. The day started with our makeup artist Laura Kelly who was more than a makeup artist on the day. Our two hairdressers Tina and Keiva from Urban Hair in Cookstown arrived with smiles and patience to style six hairs beautifully.

We had a fabulous breakfast delivery from Moon and Back in Donaghmore. The house was calm and the prosecco was opened. Karen Grattan our photographer arrived and our videographer Ronan TV, who is also one of my best friends, arrived and brought the craic with him.

Claire’s beautiful wedding dress

We got dressed and my daddy and family were waiting on me at the bottom of the stairs and it was a lovely moment. The only nerves I had were about walking up the aisle. Now I just want to do it all over again! The wedding mass was beautiful with our Priest Fr Mulligan and then Mollie McKeever singing. A few of our guests said lovely readings and prayers. We walked out down the aisle with two massive smiles to ‘Take My Hand’ by Picture This.

Off we went in a hummer together with our bridal party. We both decided we wanted to travel with them instead of in our own wedding car. We all loved this time so much. Some of our favourite songs with great memories were played.

In our pre-reception arrival suite Joseph McVeigh sang and all our guests loved it. Drinks, food, good company and music. The atmosphere was something else. Our day flew in but we enjoyed every minute of it all. Our wedding band, The Manouche Boys were exceptional. Due to Covid, we didn’t get to hear them before our day but we didn’t overthink it and rocked on. The dancefloor did not stop and we all danced the night away. Thanks to our amazing guests who were all there for a good time.

The wedding party

How did you begin planning your wedding?

We first decided on our date which was December 11, 2021. Thankfully, I love a winter wedding as this was our only option to book while arranging around the football season! The venue and the chapel was free and we confirmed.

From there I checked with Lulabelle Beauty to see if Laura was available, otherwise we may have had to rearrange… Thankfully, she said yes – as I had so much confidence in her painting our faces.

I had no vendors in mind but we didn’t research too much into it and booked them quickly. Everything was booked by September and we didn’t think or plan anything for the next year.

The bridal party

How did you decide on a venue?

I had no venues in mind or any castle wedding dreams. We contacted the Four Seasons in Monaghan and they had our date available so we went for a chat and decided to shop local.

The staff were incredible in the lead up to the wedding and made us feel special on the day. We wanted something easily accessible for our guests with a journey time of 40 minutes after the ceremony in St. Patrick’s Church, Clonoe.

Tell us all about your wedding dress, bridesmaid dresses and suits!

I proposed to my three bridesmaids, Niamh, Joanne and Duibhin in August 2020 before Joanne went back to work in Dubai. She would not be around for dress shopping so I quickly looked up shops in Belfast to make a day of it before she left two days later.

Pronuptia in Belfast was the perfect location for us to have lunch and a drink so I booked an appointment. The girls in Pronuptia were brilliant and that day I fell in love with the dress, and went back with my mum at a later date. I went to a couple of other shops just to have a look and confirm that ‘St. Patrick Zacaria’ was the one.

The happy couple

I didn’t go to any shops for bridesmaid dresses. I ordered bridesmaid dresses to arrive for Christmas 2020 when Joanne was home. I had been set on emerald green but then the champagne dresses appeared on ASOS, I purchased four of them and that was that. The girls could make anything look good.

Kieran was looked after by TW Menswear in Carrickmacross. I just wanted a timeless black suit with a satin lapel. With busy schedules, Kieran went on his own and was looked after by Martin, Peter and Blaine. The suits were Bennetti Menswear. As laidback as always, Kieran got their shoes sorted two days before the wedding in Nineteen83 Menswear in Dungannon.

The newlyweds

What was the best part in the build up to your day?

I had so much fun and memories made on my hen parties! With Covid, I went away with different friend groups and it all worked out so well. I went on a surprise trip to Liverpool, a weekend in the North Coast including a surf lesson and also created carnage in Belfast.

I also enjoyed a lovely spa day and night away two weeks before the wedding. This was organised by my sister-in-law who is such a good support. The wedding week was such a good buzz getting organised and doing bits and pieces with my mum. We had nothing left to do on the day before the wedding, so Kieran and I enjoyed a nice lunch and chilled.

Cutting the cake

When Kieran left to go back home to Monaghan, my bridesmaids arrived for a sleepover. Duibhin cooked a beautiful meal and we sipped on prosecco and laughed the night away before a few hours sleep.

What was the best moment of your day and your other favourite parts?

I enjoyed every minute of it so it’s hard to choose the best moment. The journey from the ceremony to the venue was so much fun with our best friends. I loved walking down the stairs to see my daddy’s reaction. As much as I was so nervous about walking up the aisle, I loved it and that special feeling when we got to the top.

Standing out in a park in December with no sleeves was also painless with the whole buzz and adrenaline. We made our own craic throughout the photos. Our flower girl Ava and our page boy Oliver had a brilliant day together running around and it warmed my heart to see them. Seeing all our guests enjoying a beautiful meal, dancing and socialising again was priceless.

Claire and Kieran with their godchildren

What would you tell other bride and grooms to plan first & what are your top tips?

I ordered my dress 15 months beforehand and I’m glad I did as it took 9 months to arrive with Covid delays. Organise as much as you can as early as possible so you can relax. Finalise all the vendors a couple weeks before the day. Don’t worry about the small things on the wedding week, as when the day arrives nothing will phase you – well hopefully not!

I was in a wee love bubble and couldn’t have been annoyed. It is up to you to enjoy your day. We didn’t focus on planning a second day outing. We understood that it was December and a lot of people had plans and work on the Monday morning.

We had rollover hotel food and a big crowd of us made our way to McAleers in Dungannon to keep the craic going. The cocktails were flowing and it was lovely to sit around and chat in a nice chilled setting before the music began.

During the speeches

What were the hardest parts to plan?

I did not enjoy sorting who to invite but other than that the planning was a breeze. We were so lucky the restrictions with numbers lifted as we had 190 guests. Our music had to end at midnight but we started the party at 3pm in the arrival suite. I chose the ceremony music and Kieran decided on our venue entrance music and first dance song.

Did your wedding have a theme?

We didn’t really have a theme. I’m not a very colourful girl and like to keep things simple. I love a bit of black, white and gold. We kept the flowers green and ivory with some metallic ones too.

Beautiful reception room

My florist Flowers by Geraldine knew exactly what I had in mind and organising the flowers was an easy task. We had fresh flowers but the bouquets were silk and I will have them forever.

I loved having the Christmas trees and decorations to add to it. Our wedding day was very relaxed.

Would you do anything different or wish there was anything you didn’t worry about?

I had got my bridesmaids jumpers and I wish we got a photo with them in the park. I worried about the first dance as the week ran away with us and we didn’t get to practice. It wasn’t great, but we just went with it.

Did Covid change your plans at all?

We did not have to rearrange and got married on our original date. Two weeks before our wedding, it was announced that the day had to end at midnight. We tried to pack it all in and bring dinner forward to make more time for the band and DJ to play.

We aimed to spend as little time as possible getting our photos and get to the venue as soon as possible to enjoy the time with our guests.

Do you want to tell us all about your wedding day? Email to be featured!

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