When Bri and Tim first reached out to me, all they knew was that they wanted to elope and they wanted to do it somewhere far away. After months of emails and phone calls, we finally settled on a plan. I was honored to be part of the process and help bring Bri and Tim’s elopement on the Cliffs of Moher to life.

      Enjoy Bri and Tim’s stunning Ireland elopement (and all the hiccups we tackled along the way!). If you’re planning your own international elopement, let’s chat!

       

      Abandoned road outside the Moher Cliffs

      Bride getting ready for her elopement at the Moher Cliffs

       

       

       

       

       

       

      STARTING THE ELOPEMENT OFF WITH AN ADVENTURE

      Bri and Tim originally found me after I shot one of their friends’ weddings. They came to me dreaming of an international elopement but very open to suggestions and help with the details. While they’d started planning a big, blowout wedding, it didn’t take long for them to scrap that idea (and all the stress that came with it). They saved their money, planned the trip of a lifetime, and set themselves up for a beautiful wedding experience.

      As you can imagine, I had fun with this one.

      The night before the elopement, I met Bri and Tim in a little pub in Doolin to chat, grab a drink, and nail down our plan for the next day. When I got there, Bri told me she’d just picked up her bouquet and Tim’s boutonnière from a local florist. Unfortunately, she was not happy with it.

      Photographer/hairstylist/florist Jaime to the rescue! After shooting international weddings for a few years, I’ve learned to expect these types of issues. The wedding styles and trends we know and love in the states – like the loose, bright bouquet Bri had her heart set on – don’t always match the trends in other countries. That’s why I always pack my floral supplies, hair styling tools, and other bits and bobs that can help me save the day.

      The next morning, I drove out to a different florist, snatched up a bunch of new flowers, and drove four hours across the countryside grabbing roadside wildflowers and gas station bouquets. By the time I got to Bri, my rental car was loaded with blooms. In the end, I was able to whip up a bouquet Bri loved, a bold boutonnière for Tim, and two flower crowns… just ’cause!

      Bride curling her hair for her elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride's rose gold sneakers sit on a cream pillow Bride's strapless dress hangs in front of a window Bride stands in her robe as she drinks champagne before her elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Groom's jacket and forest green tie hang on the outside of a white door Bride and groom's perfume and cologne lay on top of their matching invites Brides rose gold engagement ring sits in her navy blue ring box Gold chandelier hangs in a forest green room Groom smiles at the bride at their first look during their elopement at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold each other and smile during their first look at their elopement in the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom sit together as the out on their jewelry before their photos of their elopement at the Moher Cliffs Bride holds her rose gold bracelet, and groom admires his grey watch. Bride stands in front of a window while she holds her bouquet for her elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands and pray before their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride stands in a doorway as groom fixes her dress before their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs

      GETTING READY FOR THEIR CLIFFS OF MOHER ELOPEMENT

      The morning of their elopement, Bri and Tim got ready separately. Tim and his parents (their only wedding guests) popped out for brunch, and I helped Bri get ready in this cute AirBnB near the water. When Tim got back, I handed off some to-go fries for his bride and snatched this cute photo of her chowing down while she got ready.

      Although they opted for an elopement, Bri and Tim still incorporated some classic wedding elements into their day. They wrote personal vows in these little notebooks, and they each picked a signature scent for the trip. Now, whenever they wear those scents, they’ll be immediately taken back to their memories of their elopement on the Cliffs of Moher. How beautiful is that?

      Once both couples were all done up, they met in their AirBnB for a super simple, super sweet first look. I’m a fan of first looks in general, but there’s something extra intimate about this moment during an elopement. The couple gets to spend quality time together for the ceremony, help each other with the finishing touches, and soak up all the lovey vibes. Bri and Tim also exchanged gifts – a bracelet for her and a watch for him. Overall, it was a quiet, easy first look full of love.

      Bride and groom walk towards a blue bmw outside the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands and walk down the street during their engagement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands and smile at each other as they walk down the street at the Moher Cliffs Bride leans her head against the groom while holding her bouquet and smiles for their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Groom kisses the bride's flower crown for their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom embrace and smile in front of a bubblegum pink wall. Bride and groom in front of famous pink house in Doolin Ireland shot by Chattanooga photographer Our Ampersand Photography Bride laughs as she poses for photos with her bouquet. Bride and groom share a kiss in the road near the Moher Cliffs Groom poses and smiles in front of a pink house during his elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Up close photo of the bride's green, pink and yellow bouquet. Bride and groom in front of famous pink house in Doolin Ireland shot by Chattanooga photographer Our Ampersand Photography Bride with bouquet and groom kissing in bucolic Ireland Bride and groom laugh on a bridge during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands as they walk down the street for their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands and smile at each other as they walk down the street at the Moher Cliffs Close up of the brides white lace strapless dress is shown as the bride and groom walk down the street for their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride holds her bouquet and smiles during her engagement photos at the Moher Cliffs

      COUPLE’S PORTRAITS AROUND DOOLIN

      After their first look, Bri and Tim headed out for couple’s portraits. By the time their actual elopement rolled around, the three of us were old friends. We’d spent months planning the trip, sending inspiration back and forth, and working through all the kinks. So on the day of, these two were super relaxed and so, so trusting!

      We spent some time exploring the town of Doolin (with a stop by the iconic row of rainbow houses), fighting the insane Ireland wind, and getting tons of stunning shots against the grey, stormy sky. Then, we headed out to the Cliffs of Moher for their elopement ceremony.

      Cliffside view of the Moher Cliffs Wedding on the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland with a rainbow Cliffs of Moher, Ireland elopement with a rainbow Bride and groom exchange vows on the Moher Cliffs Close up of the groom holding the brides hand at the Moher Cliffs Bride closes her eyes for a prayer during her elopement at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom stand in front of an officiant on the cliffside and smile at each other during their engagement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom face the cliffside during their engagement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom face the cliffside during their engagement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride holds groom as she shows her engagement ring during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride puts grooms ring on his finger for their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride holds grooms hand at the Moher Cliffs Groom smiles at the bride after she puts his wedding band on at the Moher Cliffs Wedding guests smile at the couple at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom kiss during their elopement at the Moher Cliffs Officiant raises his hand as he reads to the couple at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom share a kiss as they smile during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride shakes the officiants hand after their elopement at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom on Cliffs if Moher in Ireland on a windy afternoon Bride puts on a leather jacket and looks off to the side for her elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Groom smiles as he stands cliffside for his elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom walk hand in hand down the cliff side of the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom laugh and hold each other close to the cliffside of the Moher Cliffs Recently married couple at the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland captured by Chattanooga photographer Jaime Smialek Bride and groom walk hand in hand down the cliff side of the Moher Cliffs Groom kisses the bride's temple as she smiles during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom gaze into each other's eyes as they stand on the cliffside of the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom gaze into each others eyes as they stand on the cliffside of the Moher Cliffs Cliffs of Moher elopement captured by Chattanooga photographer Our Ampersand Photography Bride holds grooms face and gazes lovingly at groom during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Groom kisses the brides temple as she smiles during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride holds two champagne glasses as groom grabs a bottle of Prosecco during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Groom pops a bottle of champagne of the cliffside of the Moher Cliffs Recently married couple on the sea cliffs of Ireland Close up of the bride and groom holding hands as her white lace wedding dress sways in the wind at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands as they walk down the cliffside of the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom gaze lovingly at each other during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom admire the view of the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom hold hands and laugh for their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Close up of the bride and groom holding hands as her white lace wedding dress sits on the grass at the Moher Cliffs Close up of the bride and grooms rings while holding hands at the Moher Cliffs Groom looks back towards the bride as they hold hands and walk down the cliffside of the Moher Cliffs Wedding at the sea cliffs of Ireland photographed by Chattanooga photographer Jaime Smialek Groom holds brides bouquet as she walks towards him at the Moher Cliffs Groom gives bride a kiss at the Moher Cliffs Cliffside view of the Moher Cliffs

      ELOPEMENT CEREMONY ON THE CLIFFS OF MOHER

      We met Tim’s parents and the officiant up on the cliffs. The walk up was gorgeous, and the views at the top were unreal. Plus, right as we got the ceremony started, a rainbow popped up in the distance. It doesn’t get more perfect than that!

      A word of warning for couples considering an elopement on the Cliffs of Moher: It’s scary, y’all! We were just a few feet from the drop-off, and the wind and rain made it hard to keep your footing. My knees were knocking the entire time! If you’re afraid of heights, let’s choose a different location. But if you’re willing to risk if for the view, it can be done!

      Bri and Tim exchanged vows and rings, Tim’s mom gave a reading, and his dad said a prayer. The couple sealed their marriage with a kiss while the wind whipped around them and waves crashed into the cliffs below.

      Before we headed back into town, Bri and Tim posed for a few more photos, this time with Bri in an old leather jacket. Not only did it look cool with her wedding dress, but this jacket is also sentimental to them both. Bri wore it on their first date! She doesn’t wear it much anymore, but I loved that she brought it along for photos. (And with the wind, I’m sure she was glad she packed it, too!)

      Inside of a seafood restaurant at the Moher Cliffs Waiter pours champagne for the wedding party at the Moher Cliffs Waiter pours champagne for the wedding party at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom toast with their wedding party in the restaurant at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom share a dance in the resturant at the Moher Cliffs Groom twirls bride during their first dance at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom laugh during their first dance in an Irish restaurant Musician plays guitar for the bride and groom during their first dance at the Moher Cliffs Groom dances with his mother Bride leans against the table and smiles at the groom at their small wedding reception Gourmet seafood plated at a restaurant in Ireland. Bride and groom look at each other lovingly as they hold each other close during their elopement photos at the Moher Cliffs Bride and groom drink together during after their elopement on the Cliffs of Moher

       

       

       

       

       

       

      MINI RECEPTION AT AN IRISH PUB

      Is there any other way to wrap up your Ireland elopement than a night at the local pub? If there is, I don’t want to hear about it!

      I joined Bri, Tim, and Tim’s parents back in Doolin for dinner and drinks at the same pub we’d met in the night before. The owners were kind enough to let Bri and Tim play ‘their song’ for their first dance. Then, Tim conspired with the house musician to surprise his mom with a mother-son dance, and Bri handed off her flower crown to her new mother-in-law. Freaking precious.

      We spent the rest of the night eating delicious food, laughing over the live music, and (naturally) drinking Guinness. I retired to my AirBnB to recover and reflect on the day, and the newlyweds headed out for the next stop on their two-week European vacation.

      I am forever grateful Bri reached out to me and trusted a total stranger to travel all the way to Ireland to document such a special day. I feel so lucky to get see the far corners of the earth and tell these stories.

      PLANNING AN INTERNATIONAL ELOPEMENT? HERE’S WHAT TO EXPECT.

      No wedding goes exactly as planned, but that goes double (or maybe even triple) for an international elopement. I can’t stress enough how important it is to have someone on your team to help create your timeline, prepare for hiccups, and keep the show going through the obstacles. I’ll be forever grateful that Bri and Tim trusted me, a total stranger, to meet them halfway across the globe and make their wedding day special. Love you guys.

      If you’re planning your own international elopement, I’d love to chat. I’m happy to help plan the trip, scout locations, and make sure your wedding day runs as smoothly as possible (floral fiascos be damned!). Head over to my contact page, shoot me a message, and let’s talk about your dream elopement.

       

       

       

       

       

       

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