Justin Alexander
Casablanca Bridal
Hayes & Jarvis
Crawfordsburn Inn

Real Irish Wedding: Lisa Thompson & Michael Ferguson

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Real Irish Wedding: Friday 17th August in London and Saturday 25th August at Montalto Estate, Ballynahinch

From London to Montalto Estate, Lisa and Michael’s 10-day city chic wedding took us on a real journey…

The couple

Lisa and Michael met at a mutual friend’s party in 2007 and got engaged on London’s Tower Bridge with the lights of city skyline as the romantic backdrop.

Wedding planning

“When Michael and I got engaged we knew we wanted our celebrations to be different than a traditional wedding,” begins Lisa. “We wanted to incorporate a very relaxed intimate ceremony with something fun for the celebrations. It was also really important to us that the wedding didn’t just feel like a one-day event – we wanted the celebrations to last for more than one day- so we stretched it out over 10 days!”

The relaxed atmosphere meant abandoning many of the formal traditions associated with weddings and so there was no cake, no bridesmaids, no best man and no speeches!


The couple chose the iconic Chelsea Registry Office, Kings Road in London as the location for their ceremony; “We had always enjoyed how you could stroll along the Kings Road and visit the cafes, bars and shops all within walking distance of our hotel, so it had to be there,” reveals Lisa.

Real Irish Wedding Montalto Estate Ballynahinch

10 of their closest family and friends joined Lisa and Michael for four days in Chelsea. Their afternoon ceremony was a casual affair, starting with a stroll from boutique MyHotel Chelsea, through St Luke’s gardens for pictures and on to the Registry office. “This was one of the best parts,” recalls Lisa. “The sun was shining and we chatted and laughed together which made it all so relaxed. Having pictures before hand meant we could go straight into celebrating after the ceremony!”

Montalto Estate

Just a few days later the couple were joined by 20 guests at the stunning Montalto Estate where the girls enjoyed Champagne brunch and pampering while the chaps donned wellies and Barbour jackets for an afternoon of shooting. This was followed by an evening of dinner, cocktails and dancing in the Carriage Rooms on the estate.

“I had the pleasure of visiting Montalto a few years back and fell in love – from then on I always knew if I ever got married it would have to be there,” Lisa explains. “The romance and beauty of the Estate is breathtaking and I loved the secluded feeling you have when you are there.”

Real Irish Wedding Montalto Estate Ballynahinch 2

Wedding dress

Lisa wore a bespoke gown by Pronuptia Belfast. “ I knew I wanted a tea length dress and the city part involved some walking, so I didn’t want to feel restricted. It also had to show off my coral Jimmy Choos! The lace and belt wasn’t actually added until a few days before the wedding – a last minute change – but one I am so glad I made as I think the dress would have been too plain otherwise.”

Real Irish Wedding Montalto Estate Ballynahinch 3


Michael wore a grey suit and coral striped tie by Suitor Menswear, Belfast

The flowers

Being the owners of Ferguson Flowers in Belfast, it comes as no surprise that the flowers, created by Ferguson Flowers, played a huge part on the day. Formal arrangements were a mixture of homegrown hydrangeas, vintage coloured roses, spray roses and freesia.  Jars and jugs decorated the bar area with a mixture of spray roses, milk churns were filled with huge blue delphiniums and a vintage bike was decorated with trailing ivy. Tins and retro boxes of rosemary, coriander and thyme provided the finishing touches.

Real Irish Wedding Montalto Estate Ballynahinch 4

Photography by Jamie Trimble

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