As the July sun broke through the clouds over magnificent Gloster House, Co. Offaly, the final touches were being made to a day to remember for our real wedding couple, Tara and Phil. An elegant blakc-tie ceremony and reception in the Georgian estate made way for a vibrant disco party once the sun went down! Photographer David McClelland was on hand to capture each smile, tear and dance move, so prepare to dive into this divine country house wedding.
Oh hey, Mr Jimmy Choo, how lovely it is to see you. Check ou those ornate heels!
Tara and Phil met in their first year of college at UCD in 2009. Their days of dating began after a summer in Canada a year later. Fast forward 10 wonderful years together, to when Phil proposed in an idyllic spot in Co. Wicklow. Tara recalls the moment: “Phil proposed on the dunes of Brittas Bay beach in the run-up to Christmas. We went for a walk with the dogs and as the sun went down on a surprisingly sunny winter evening he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him!”
The morning of the wedding day was filled with an abundance of love, laughter and happy tears. As a gift to her daughter, Tara’s mother gave her a bracelet that belonged to her grandmother on the morning of the wedding. Her grandfather had gifted it 70 years before on another beautiful July day – the 11th July 1952 to be exact, which was engraved on the bracelet. Phil’s grandmother, the only living grandparent on both sides of the family, was able to attend, and it meant the world to Phil and and Tara to have that generation represented on such a special day.
Is there anything more sentimental than a handwritten letter on the morning of your wedding? We love this moment captured as Phil reads Tara’s words.
The most important element of Tara and Phil’s wedding day was to be surrounded by family and friends, and to have a day filled with laughter and fun. They describe their overall vibe as a magical country house disco party, and we they definitely achieved what they set out to do!
The outdoor ceremony took place on the idyllic private gardens of Gloster House. which sits at the foot of the Slieve Bloom Mountains. Tara walked up the aisle to I’ll Be There by Beka, with other musical choices from London Grammar, The Goo Goo Dolls and Louis Armstrong. “We loved each music piece and the readings we selected for the ceremony. We had three singers and an accompanist perform these during the ceremony who were incredible. We both had family members and friends read excerpts from lyrics and poems. Tara’s godmother wrote a piece to read during the ceremony and framed it for us at home,” the couple reveal.
To they walked hand in hand under the confetti to I Want Your Love by Chic. The chic bridal party looked breathtaking in shimmering champagne gowns. Plump ivory florals for the wedding bouquets, keep the palette elegant and minimalistic, and work perfectly with the bride’s own effortless style. Of course, we can’t forget the groom’s party who looked just as sharp in black-tie tuxedos, a timeless choice!
Describing the wedding day, they say: “We didn’t want anything to be too over the top. We wanted to keep the whole day quite minimalistic, refined and relaxed, focusing on everyone being together in a beautiful space.”
Tara, our ethereal bride, was a knock out in her Cortana gown made from Italian silk. The three layers flow magnificently together creating a cape-like style and deep v-back that complemented her subtly-sweet pearl headpiece.
Newlyweds Tara and Phil began the search for their dream wedding venue during the lockdown in early 2020. They explain: “We were immediately drawn to the photos of Gloster House and arranged a virtual viewing with Nigel, who was very helpful from the outset and we fell in love with the idea of getting married there. We loved the high ceilings of the chapel and the fact that we had the flexibility to make the venue our own. Three weeks after getting engaged we had the venue booked!”
The reception tables were garnished with colourful candles, greenery and pretty pink wildflowers and roses in bud vases – the perfect summer combination! When it comes to advice, they reassured readers of how everything comes together in the end and to make sure to relax and enjoy the day.
The two-tiered wedding cake was made by Tara’s talented cousin, while more DIY elements saw the bride and her aunt design the menus and ceremony cards. As the evening came to a close, Tara and Phil shared their first dance to Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell – a cheerful and upbeat track to kickstart the wedding disco party dreamed of, as helmed by DJ extraordinaire Aidan Kavanagh who certainly knows how to get a crowd on their feet.
A very special thank you to Tara, Phil and David McClelland for sharing this gorgeous wedding day with us at One Fab Day!
If you enjoyed this charming country house wedding, visit Ireland’s best country house venues right here!