Wedding of the Week: Blue shawls woven with love for Sarah and Alan’s big day

Wedding of the Week: Blue shawls woven with love for Sarah and Alan’s big day

When the father-of-the-bride is a master weaver, you are guaranteed the perfect accessory for an Irish wedding party.

And if it’s a winter do, as was the case for Kerry couple Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly, so much the better.

Sarah Cahill with her sisters Amy and Emily Cahill, and parents Cathy and John Cahill

Sarah’s dad John Cahill has worked the looms at Mucros Weavers at Muckross House, Killarney, for 45 years. “He designed and wove shawls for my sisters, my mom Cathy and me to wear for the occasion. The shawls kept us warm while we were outside on what was a blustery day — and were also my ‘something blue’,” says the bride.

Sarah Cahill with her sisters Emily and Amy Cahill and her mother Cathy Cahill wearing the shawls made for them by her dad John Cahill

“It was so special to have something made by my dad so close to me on my wedding day. It is such a treat to wear the shawl as a scarf now and have it bring back memories of the best day of my life.” 

Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly got married in Fossa

The day in question was December 28, when Sarah, exchanged vows with Alan Kelly, from Killarney, in the Prince of Peace Church in the bride’s home parish of Fossa on December 28. 

Sarah, a primary school teacher, and Alan, an accountant, were married by Fr Kieran O’Brien.

Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly at the Old Boathouse at Dundag

Despite the wind and rain, the newlyweds enjoyed their posing for their photographer, Nerijus Karmilkovas, especially when he led them to Muckross House, on their photoshoot. “We took the majority of our photos at the Old Boathouse at Dundag, where I donned Ugg boots,” says Sarah.

The bride’s mum and dad and grandmother Peggie O’Grady celebrated with the newlyweds and their guests at the reception, which took place in The Brehon Hotel.

The groom’s parents were also very much in their thoughts. “Alan’s late mother, Hannah, died in 1991 and Alan’s dad, Donie, was unwell at the time of the wedding and sadly passed away on February 11,” says Sarah.

“Although Donie was too unwell to attend the wedding, he was able to watch it on the livestream. We called to see him straight after the church so he got to see us on our special day. It was so important to have him part of our day.”

Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly visited Muckross House on their wedding day

Sarah’s two sisters, Amy and Emily Cahill, were by her side as bridesmaids while Alan’s cousin Paul Cahill was his best man and his friend Micheál O’Sullivan was his groomsman.

Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly first met on a night out in Killarney in 2017

In fact, was the best man who played Cupid. “We met how many couples in Killarney meet — on a good old-fashioned night out!” says Sarah.

That was on St Stephen’s Night, 2017. “Killarney was buzzing,” says Sarah. “The best man, Paul, is first cousin to us both. I bumped into Paul [our best man] in Social 15 nightclub but he wasn’t in the mood for entertaining me so he decided to introduce me to his cousin, Alan.  Paul had no idea that he would be toasting the happy couple five years later!” 

Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly got engaged in June 2021

Alan surprised Sarah by popping the question during a break in Sheen Falls Lodge in Kenmare in June 2021.

Sarah Cahill’s dress is from The White and Gold in Kinsale. The bouquets and buttonholes were made by Maura Sheehy of Maura’s Cottage Flowers

On her wedding day, Sarah looked stunning in the Grace design from Love Story, which she sourced in The White and Gold in Kinsale. “I also got my shoes there. My beautiful sisters and bridesmaids treated me to a pair of Loeffler Randall heels which I wore for my hen party in Dingle and on my wedding day,” she says.

The bouquets and buttonholes were supplied by Maura Sheehy from Maura’s Cottage Flowers, while the groom’s aunt Carmel Cahill created the church floral arrangements.

The Fossa-based newlyweds plan to honeymoon in Dubai and the Maldives.

Sarah Cahill and Alan Kelly were married at Prince of Peace church in Fossa
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