So you’ve been invited to a wedding…

Posted on: 5th September, 2016

Category: Image

Contributor: Louise O'Dwyer

A practical and fun relationship show ‘Then Comes Marriage’ airing on RTÉ2 this autumn offers a unique opportunity for couples thinking of taking the plunge to gain valuable insight into their relationship.

Under the guidance of leading relationship experts, psychoanalytic psychotherapist Dr. Ray O’Neill and psychologist Allison Keating, three couples have the chance to prepare for their future life together on the ultimate relationship skills crash course, which tackles everything from personal finances to family planning. Ray speaks to Mary O’Brien.

The invite has arrived so you know that it is style countdown time. Believe it or not, anything might go regarding a lot of situations these days but there a still a few simple rules when it comes to dressing as a wedding guest.

If there is going to be a white dress at a wedding… then it should only be on the bride, actually champagne and ivory fall into that category too. While not every bride wears white now, it’s always better to be safe than sorry! Bottom line, unless the bride specifically asks people to wear white, it’s a big no-no, so save that gorgeous white or ivory dress for another occasion.

There will always be “that one” who shows too much skin or reveals too much cleavage. Proper etiquette demands that only the bride should steal the show; all eyes should be on her, so no matter how tanned, toned or great your legs or cleavage look, save it for another day. That said; it is very definitely ok to accentuate your favourite asset. Your outfit can have one sexy element – like a low back or a short hemline, a cut-out or a body con snug fit – but no more than one… that’s what you call “tasteful dressing”! Going to a wedding is very different from going to a club, yes there might be a disco at the end of the day but there will be a hell of a lot more going on before you hit the dance floor.

Always study the invitation, look for clues like semi-formal, beach-chic or black tie. If the ceremony is in a church then you will need a pashmina or at least something to cover the fact that your dress is backless. The people that will be sitting behind you, whether they know you or not, will be sitting there for quite a while. Do you really want to be referred to as the “girl with the backless dress” for the rest of the day?

If you are unlucky enough to choose a dress that is exactly the same shade as the bridesmaids, there are a few things that you can do to separate yourself from the bridal party; add a belt, a wacky clip-on flower, unusual colour shoes or a cropped jacket. For those of you who always choose prints, then you will always be safe. This is one of the things that cannot be helped, so if you do show up in the same colour, just know that you have great taste – same as the bride!

Obviously there will be a lot of photos taken, whether it is the wedding photographer or other guests on their phone, so if you feel a bit uncomfortable, or under-dressed, standing at home in front of your mirror, think long and hard about how you would feel being photographed in the dress – a photo lasts!

If you are a certain age, then you might end up having three or four more weddings in any one season. Weddings in succession can be costly, especially if every event requires a different outfit because it is the same group of friends. A great way to avoid breaking the bank is to cleverly buy a couple of versatile dresses that are subtle enough to look different with different accessories. Statement accessories are a fantastic way to update any look, especially if you incorporate some of the latest trends.

I really do think that every bride should make sure that there is communication about colours between the mother-of-the-bride and the mother-of-the-groom. Neither wants to look the same as the other and this can most definitely be avoided. Also it is important that their choice of colours will complement, not clash with, whatever shade the bridesmaids will be wearing. Good communication is an absolute must.

Winter weddings are the perfect opportunity to wear a luxurious faux-fur stole. You will look glamourous, on-trend and most importantly, you will be warm. Summer weddings can require a bit of a sun-kissed look so get your tan RIGHT and if you can’t do it yourself, pay a professional – you don’t need to be mahogany, a light glow is more than enough. That said, pale white skin can look amazing when complemented with the right colours, then all the tan pressure is off. Obviously we do not live in the tropics, so some summer weddings could easily be mistaken with a winter wedding; downpours, wind or dull grey skies can really change how you look and feel in a skimpy little dress. Always have a back-up plan like a sheer coat, jacket etc because it is all about feeling comfortable!

While make-up artists can create an amazing look, don’t decide on the morning that you are a make-up artist if you clearly are not. Go with a more dramatic look than you would normally wear on a day-to-day basis but don’t try a new magazine look unless you have practiced and made perfect.

Jewellery can be key to a great look; a more subtle dress demands dramatic jewellery, so wear it and wear it well. Patterned dresses need minimal jewels… beware of that mistake or you could end up looking a bit disjointed. Heels must be wearable, they need to do more than just look good, so find your ‘walk-able’ height and strut your stuff with your head held high.

Be confident…be yourself…and for God’s sake when someone pays you a compliment, say ‘thank you’ – please don’t launch into a story about whom the dress is borrowed from or how cheap it was. It is proper etiquette to say “thanks” and leave it at that, you could add that “it is very comfortable’. Believe it or not, because you look good in the dress and carry it off confidently is the reason why someone will say how well you look. PLEASE REMEMBER THIS. FEEL THE COMPLIMENT!

Always remember what an honour it is to be invited to a day that celebrates love. You do know that love makes the world go round – so soak up that wonderful romantic experience and let it into your heart.

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Wave to Mary! 65-year-old Mary Nolan Hickey is running around the entire coast of the Island of Ireland to raise funds & awareness for the RNLI and is currently running the roads of West Cork.

Mary is the only woman to have completed every single Dublin Marathon (all 38 of them). She’s also completed the grueling Marathon des Sables in the Sahara Desert, known as the ‘toughest foot race on earth’.

To mark her 50th year involved in Athletics Mary is taking on her biggest challenge yet (even though she thought she’d already done that when completing the Dublin Marathon when she was over six months pregnant!) She wants to raise as much money as possible for the RNLI.

Mary started her epic journey in Arklow, Co. Wicklow, on New Year’s Day. She aims to cover up to 5000 kilometers, using coastal routes, over the next five months. She hopes to get back in time to get her first pension payment in June when she turns 66.

Mary will stop off at as many RNLI stations as possible, on her once in a lifetime adventure. As far as she knows no other woman has ever taken on this challenge.

Speaking about her journey Mary said:

“I wanted to prove that age not a barrier. Coming from a coastal town I have a deep affinity with our local RNLI station & volunteers and have huge admiration for the brave men and women who risk their lives to save lives at sea”.

Mary, who’s depending on the goodwill of communities along her route for accommodation, has been astounded by the response so far. “The support has been overwhelming,” she said. “I have met the most amazing and encouraging people along the way”.

To see more about Mary’s adventures, and to pinpoint her location today, check out her Facebook page - rnlilapofthemap2018.
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20th March, 2018  ·  


This Saturday the 10th March, will see some magically curious activity as local Bandon national schools compete in a Wizarding Harry Potter Quiz. The prize will be the beautiful Bandon Banshee Perpetual Cup.

As any Harry Potter enthusiast knows, Bandon has the unique honour of having a character named after the town. The Bandon Banshee, was referred to as the nemesis of Gilderoy Lockhart in the Chamber of Secrets. The book grossed €60 million in sales and was the 7th highest earning film of all time.

Locals, looking to enhance the town for young people, saw the quiz as an ideal way promote the connection. The universally absorbing book series brings young readers on a huge adventure of magic, adversity and triumph. It is also an exploration of loyalty and friendship, good and evil – so it is not only popular way to engage young people, it is a hugely positive connection.

Zoe Tennyson, one of the organisers said they were delighted with the response from schools who ran a qualifying quiz as part of World Book Day. On Saturday Bandon Town Hall will be transformed into Hogwarts Great Hall, with proceeds going Bandon Playground Group, and to cover costs of the event.

Bandon Books will be rewarding the winning team with vouchers to each of the five members. The Bandon Banshee, or Bean-sidhe na Bandaan Perpetual Cup will be hotly contested – but which school will the Banshee go to??

If you have any questions please call Marguerite McQuaid on 087 900 9494
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8th March, 2018  ·  

Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition 23 February 2018

The inaugural Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition will take place in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen this Friday 23rd February. As part of Engineers Week 2018, leaders and members of Ballineen Foróige Club have organised an exhibition which will showcase a diverse and exciting range of engineering projects that have been undertaken by members of the club over the last few weeks, with the aid of leaders and a number of local engineers.

With the aid of local pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, along with the support of STEAM Education, a UCC based company focused on promoting science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths subjects in primary schools, Ballineen Foróige has been engaging members and leaders in all things engineering over the last six weeks. From researching, designing, and prototyping a project based on local problems, to participating in various workshops on coding and careers in engineering, Ballineen Foróige have been extremely busy in preparation for the exhibition this coming Friday night.

On the night itself, Michael Loftus, Head of Engineering at CIT, Fintan Goold, Manager at Eli Lilly and All-Ireland Cork winning Footballer, along with Geraldine Coughlan of GCA Architects & Designers, a local business, will act as judges on the night, evaluating the different engineering projects and offering some advice to the members of the club. Also in attendance will be the CEO of Foróige Seán Campbell, along with a number of local councillors, TD’s and Senators.

Leading the team of Ballineen Foróige leaders organising the event, is Rebecca Dwyer, a bioprocess engineer at Eli Lilly. Rebecca recently became a leader in the club and says that Ballineen Foróige Young Engineer Exhibition 2018 “promises to be a fun, challenging and rewarding experience for all involved and we look forward to welcoming parents, relatives, friends and members of the public to the exhibition and film screening on the evening of Friday 23rd February.” Overall, there are twelve projects entered in the exhibition. One project, led by Cian Kennefick and Charlie Nolan, members of the starting out club, examines the possibility of installing speed ramps on the road near local primary school. Fourteen-year-old Charlie says he got involved in the project as it was something to do and it gets you thinking. Cian says the most exciting part of the project was the building of the prototypes.

Both Cian and Charlie, along with thirty other members of the club will display their projects this coming Friday 23 February in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen. Doors open at 8pm and the event runs until 10pm. All are welcome to attend, and admission is free. Catering, including tea and coffee, will be provided on the night.
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20th February, 2018  ·  

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Main course

17th February, 2018  ·  

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