A SPECIAL proposal beside the sparkling canals of Amsterdam transformed into a beautiful white wedding, filled with laughter and love for Dr Sarah and Mark Brown.
‘A traditional day, with a modern twist’ is how Sarah (née Smyth) of Killyman, Tyrone, described the occasion, which took place at the stunning Lough Erne Resort, Enniskillen, on June 25.
Emotion was at the forefront of the ceremony, conducted by Jim Carbin, and performed under the cheerful eyes of the newlyweds’ bridal party, maid of honour, Danielle McKeown; best man, Finbar Foxwell; bridesmaids, Linzi Dodds and Dr Rebecca Smylie; groomsmen, Thomas English and Neil Kirkpatrick; ushers David Bigger and Colin Smyth (uncle of bride); page boy, Freddie Kirkpatrick; and beloved family and friends.
Sarah, daughter of David and Karen Smyth, first met Mark, son of Doris Brown and the late Sam Brown, on Tinder at the start of May 2017.
Recalling her first impressions of the Coleraine man as ‘very kind’, with a ‘similar sense of humour’ to her, Sarah explained that the pair kicked it off well, and began dating straight away.
Together for just over two years, it was on March 30, 2019, that Mark, a software architect, asked for Sarah’s hand in marriage.
He then presented her with ring, featuring an eye-catching platinum band, and a trio of glittering stones, which Sarah ‘loved’.
“We went to Amsterdam for my birthday, and Mark proposed beside canals in Amsterdam,” Sarah recounted. “I was shocked, but delighted.”
Envisioning an ‘all white day’, Sarah and Mark, who are both aged 28, began planning for their special wedding right away.
“We loved the idea of having a traditional day, with modern twists,” Sarah said. “We chose the Lough Erne Resort to be our venue as the setting and reception room was bright, and featured lots of natural light.”
While some brides struggle to find their perfect dress because they are overwhelmed by the wealth of choice in their local boutiques and stores much further afield, Sarah was on the complete opposite side of the shopping spectrum.
“I chose the first dress I tried on in the first shop I went to,” Sarah reflected. “I knew straight away that it was the one.”
The gown in question was a charming white and fitted number from La Boda Bridal, Banbridge.
“I chose it because it was exactly what I always imagined,” Sarah said.
When the couple’s wedding day arrived, Sarah said she felt ‘happy and excited’, and the summer weather, too, was on their side – dry, with lovely sunny intervals.
Having stayed in the Lough Erne Resort the previous night, the blushing bride-to-be enjoyed a peaceful morning getting ready with her nearest and dearest, and relished the scenic stroll to her wedding ceremony.
Walking up the aisle to a sea of smiles, there was emotion, love and happiness in the air when the new Mr and Mrs Brown were pronounced husband and wife by officiant, Jim Carbin, and this incredible atmosphere was captured perfectly by photographer, Jude Browne.
They say that ‘time flies when you are having fun’, and no sooner had the newlyweds said ‘I do’, than they were tucking into their exquisite four-tiered white wedding cake, decorated with pretty pastel pink and white flowers during an evening of celebration, before dancing the night away to premier wedding band, Manouche Boys.
“The day was exactly what I wanted,” concluded Sarah. “I wouldn’t have changed a thing.”
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