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From the moment that glittering diamond is slipped on your finger and you're basking in the glow of engagement, thoughts about your Big Day are not far from your mind.

Weddings are wonderful occasions and a day that brides and grooms want to be perfect – which can lead to a lot of stress emotionally, physically and financially.

Engaged couples have to deal with venues, flowers, music, food, photographers, dresses, entertainment…the list goes on.

But what if there was a way you could trade in the spreadsheets and lists for something much more straightforward?

If the term ''cashless wedding'' sounds like something you'd like then Wedding Wallet, a fancy new tech tool created by Justin Kearns, is IDEAL for you.

What is it?

It's a platform aimed at engaged couples which lets couples budget, plan and pay for their wedding in one place.

How does it work?

It connects you to vendors based your wedding date, location and budget.

You can also get cash gifts over the platform by sending a private link with friends and family on request.

Sounds fab, right?

How do you use it?

It couldn't be easier – just sign up to weddingwallet.ie on mobile or desktop  and create a manageable wedding budget for every element of the big day from the dress to the DJ.

What's so handy is that the vendors you're connected during via Wedding Wallet will ony be available on the date of their big day, reducing the already-stretched time that you have.

So, once the couples match with a vendor, they can ask directly for more details, receive a quote and then Wedding Wallet allows them to send the vendor the initial booking deposit, with the remaining amount due being paid in one payment before the big day or by creating a manageable instalment payment plan.

CEO Justin says, ''The average age of the Irish person getting married is 35 – and so the concept of online payment is second nature to them and is expected by this consumer.''

He continued, ''Getting married is one of the most important moments in a person’s life so it should be a fun, stress-free and manageable experience."

Basically, this platform takes the stress out of what can be one of the most stressful experiences of your life, meaning you'll have more time to enjoy the build-up.

And that sounds good to us.

To sign up to Wedding Wallet for free as a vendor or couple, visit weddingwallet.ie or @weddingwallet_ on social media.

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It's no surprise that a bride's wedding day doesn't go exactly like the movies.

A realistic wedding day meets somewhere in between a Disney movie and a Don't Tell the Bride episode.

“Here Comes the Bride” down the aisle, lined with watchful guests turned in their seats to see the big white dress trail to the tune.

Tulle is draped in sweeping loops along pews filled with family and friends, as the church whispers promises of a happy ever after.

Today had been the most stressful and the most wonderful day of the bride's life. The wrong flowers line reception tables facing the wrong DJ booth.

Her dream band had cancelled last minute, and they were forced to hook up her niece's iPhone to the church speakers for the ceremony music.

She takes it all in as she puts one heel in front of the other: the incompetence of professionals, the coffee staining her veil, her mum-in-law’s audacity to wear white, the utter frustration of the whole day.

And, like all the movies, the minute she lays eyes on the man waiting for her at the alter, all the details melt away.

But what are her guests thinking as they watch from their wooden seats, shoulder to shoulder, as the ceremony unfolds?

It turns out guests have ranked these thoughts from most to least enjoyable during a recent study conducted by American Express.

The most important priority ranked was the other guests, with 44% of wedding attendees agreeing the guest list was vital to their happiness. They said that they must know those in attendance well enough and enjoy their company.

Secondly, was good weather at 42%, of course, for that could potentially ruin the whole event if they were expected to mingle and dance in an outdoor venue.

Surprisingly, how well they knew the groom or bride was only voted third at 41%. It seems family and friends thought the couple's compatibility was less important than their experience at the ceremony.

The venue and catering followed fourth and fifth at 38% and 37% during the survey.

Unlike the bride, guests stated that the smaller details made less of a contribution to the big day:

1. Favours or goody bags– 5 per cent

2. The speeches – 10 per cent

3. Being able to bring children – 10 per cent

4. Being able to bring a plus one – 13 per cent

5. Meeting new people – 13 per cent.

So, for those of you planning your perfect wedding, it is nice to know that the little things like enough space for a plus one or hand-crafted goody bags are not as important as you thought.

Phew! You can devote your time to the big things and, we would recommend, drafting up a drama-free guest list.

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When your grandfather is one of Russia's richest men – it's no surprise that your wedding is entirely, wonderfully OTT. 

Held at London's swish Landmark hotel in Marylebone, hundreds of friends and family were on hand last Saturday to celebrate the marriage of 19-year-old heiress Irene Kogan to Daniel Kevey.

 

A video posted by Irina (@eriiisha) on

Following a traditional Jewish ceremony, guests were served a stunning nine-course meal which included the likes of yellow fin tuna, seared sea bass, roasted fillet of dry-aged beef, and a pear and pistachio bake-well. 

Then there was the spectacular 3-metre tall, ten-tier wedding cake – as created by the talented London-based Elizabeth Solaru.

DailyMail.com reports that it cost £100,000 and featured five flavours, and more than 10,000 sugar flowers. It was baked using a batter that contained some 1,000 duck eggs.

Antonio Banderas was on hand for one of the speeches, but Irene's property developer grandfather, Valery Kogan, really went all out with the entertainment: Elton John and Mariah Carey sung live while afterward Mark Ronson performed a DJ set into the early morning.

The cost for those acts alone? Around $4.25m.

The bride herself, who at one stage was dancing alongside Mariah, wore two stunning dresses from Ralph & Russo over the course of the celebrations.

Meanwhile, the flower girls opted for pale blue tulle skirts to complement the overall colour scheme. 

A giant wall of flowers, much like the one Kim and Kanye used during their 2014 Paris nuptials, was adorned with the happy couple's initials – I & D – and was in place for photographs.

The wedding was held over the weekend and in the aftermath, glamorous guests have been taking to Instagram with what amounts to a stunning set of snaps.

Indeed, if you're looking for a spot of fashion stimulus in order to plan your attire for any forthcoming Russian billionaire Big Days, take a look at the below ten #styleinspo snaps… 

 

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Over the last few years there has been an increasing shift towards more alternative style weddings, and for one CrossFit obsessed couple in the US that trend resulted in a big day with a difference.

Brooklyn-based newlyweds Oliver Drewes and Christina Moore exchanged vows over the weekend in a Californian tennis stadium as they attended the 2016 CrossFit Games.

The couple – who met on a blind date in a New York gym – had considered eloping for the occasion but instead opted for a fitness themed big day when they won an all expenses paid wedding in a Reebok-run social media competition.

The 30-year-old bride told People: "We had such an amazing time at the 2015 Reebok CrossFit Games that we knew a wedding at the 2016 Games would be nothing short of epic."

"We wanted to elope anyway, so why not in Carson in a stadium full of people who share our values?"

The bride – who wore a white sports bra, tennis skirt, runners and small veil-like headpiece – told InStyle: "I didn't even notice a crowd. My dad talked to me the whole time we were walking [down the aisle], then I just focused on Oliver."

"The crowd was supportive and we were lucky to have friends and family on the stadium floor with us, so we felt loved."

The newlywed admitted she would not have felt comfortable wearing a traditional wedding dress on her big day and so wearing workout gear "only made sense".

According to the Mail Online, the happy couple managed to work CrossFit references into their vows and just in case the occasion conflicted with someone’s cheat day (hate that) the wedding cake was completely paleo.

In fitness and in health…

Feat image: Getty

Centre images: Preston Smith Photography

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There’s no doubt that us Irish gals are a progressive lot – and let’s face it, we rarely need an excuse to speak up and speak out.

Still, when it comes to putting a ring on it, it seems that folk in this country remain pretty traditional: more than half say they’d be happy to change their name after getting married.

And while the survey – released earlier today by One4All – doesn’t differentiate between male and female respondents, it remains the norm for the bride to make the swap rather than the other way around.

Nevertheless, a quarter have no intention of relinquishing their birth name – probably a figure that will continue to rise as the age of marrying couples also increases (women in Ireland are now a rather mature 33 years; men are an equally grown-up 35 upon marriage).

One in 10 opt for a double-barrel compromise – a particularly popular choice for same-sex couples – while just 2 percent go the way of Dawn O’Porter, drawing on an element of their spouse’s title to create something new altogether.

But regardless of the naming preferences of the happy couple – and despite the obvious expenses of attending – it furthermore appears that as wedding guests, we're usually seriously up for big day out.

According to the same One4all report, which quizzed close to 600 Irish adults, 75 percent of us happily ditch the kids for a proper knees-up and only 2 percent would consider declining an invite if it meant taking a day off work.

Meanwhile, when it comes to keeping unflattering snaps off the internet; a quarter of brides and grooms would implement a social media ban during their nuptials, and only 10 percent would try and get a dedicated hashtag going.

Commenting on the survey results One4all Ireland said: “The survey reflects that we are still very respectful of the ceremony of marriage and we are huge fans of the big day out and all it entails.”​

They added: “There’s no doubt that weddings and the etiquette that goes with them can be tricky to navigate. For any wedding guests looking for the perfect gift for the happy couple, the One4all Wedding Gift Card is an appreciated gift.”

One4All gift cards can also be personalised with a bespoke image or message

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Introducing the world's most generous couple!

Over the past few years, Turkey has welcomed almost two million refugees from Syria, with 4,000 alone in the Turkish city of Kilis, all of whom are fed by a charity in the area. 

One bride and groom decided to share their joyful day with those who are less fortunate by inviting them to eat with them and celebrate at their wedding. 

​Fethullah Üzümcüoğlu and Esra Polat got married in a province near the Syrian border last week. Spurred on by an idea from the groom's father, they opened their big day to thousands of people in need.

Food was provided to the guests using trucks and the bride and groom were among those who helped to dish it out. Father of the groom Serhat Kilis said that he hopes others will follow suit and spend their wedding day celebrating with their Syrian brothers and sisters. 

"We thought that on such a happy day, we would share the wedding party with our Syrian brothers and sisters," he explained. 

"God willing, this will lead to others doing the same and giving food to our Syrian brothers and sisters. For us, it was an interesting wedding dinner."

Bride Esra described the whole thing as a "wonderful experience," adding, "I’m happy that we had the opportunity to share our wedding meal with the people who are in real need."

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We know all about the ceremony, the guests, the venue, the food, and the tears (Mark's – not Michelle's).

We even heard of their incredible-sounding Dirty Dancing routine, and have been given a glimpse of their Maldives honeymoon.

But what we've really been waiting for is news of The Dress.

Yes, the Hello! magazine containing exclusive snaps of the celebrity wedding of the year hits shelves tomorrow – and the sneak-peak cover offers an amazingly exciting taster of what the beautiful bride wore.

It had already been widely reported in advance that the 27-year-old actress had designed the gown herself, and SHEmazing! can now reveal that it is in fact a bespoke creation imagined by Michelle in conjunction with Israeli atelier, Galia Lahav.

​Michelle purchased the dress at Brown's Brides in central London, where she had been spotted a week before her Big Day getting a last-minute fitting.

It is adorned with stunning French lace and delicate Swarovski crystals, and features a cascading silk tulle fishtail. Arguably most striking of all, however, is the plunging lace-trimmed deep-V back. 

Her veil, which she wore for the wedding ceremony but then removed for the reception, is by Peter Langner, who has been creating stunning pieces from his Roman studio for 25 years. 

Meanwhile, Mark, 28, certainly looks handsome in his black tuxedo and bowtie. ​"She looked so amazing. Her wedding dress was just perfect," the groom told Hello!.

The reality TV star also summed up his love for his wife, saying: "Not only are you beautiful, but you are one of the most incredible people I have ever met. You truly are sensational in every single way."

Michelle herself was understandably equally glowing: "Seeing Mark looking back at me as I walked down the aisle was the best feeling ever," she commented.

Furthermore visible in the teaser magazine shot, which was released earlier this evening, is the lush setting of Hengrave Hall in Suffolk, the breathtaking 16th-century manor where the couple held their lavish reception.

Mark and Michelle's 29-page wedding album, complete with details from inside the ceremony, tears from the groom, their first dance plus the Dirty Dancing inspired routine, are all in the latest edition of Hello! magazine, which is on sale tomorrow.

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Prepare to feel all of the feels with this emotional video!

NASCAR driver Brian Scott married the love of his life, Whitney Kay recently, but he made sure he gave his vows not only to his wife-to-be, but also to his future stepdaughter, Brielle. 

Bending down to the 3-year-old, Brian says to Brielle "I promise to always hold your hand and skip with you down the street and bring comfort to your life. I vow to make you say your prayers before you eat. I promise to read you stories at night and to always tuck you in real tight. I vow to show you how a man should treat a woman in my relationship with your mother. And above all else, I vow to protect you, care for you and love you forever."

Needless to say, the special moment between father and daughter instantly brought tears to the eyes of guests (ok, fine we're in bits too!). 

To see the amazing vow to his stepdaughter, skip to 4:09, though to be fair the entire video is stunning. 

The video was shared on YouTube last year, but has gained major traction in the last few weeks, with almost a million views!

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We reckon this groom really regrets deciding to pick up his new wife and run with her…

Because of course he fell, and it looked painful too!

Thankfully, the bride seems to be a good sport and gets back in the saddle (so to speak). 

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So, you have that big wedding planned when you suddenly realise:

What are your options? Well, you could take a leaf out of Tucker Blandford’s book and fake your death. No? A break-up would be far easier, we have to agree.

Tucker met his former fiancée, Englishwoman, Alex Lanchester, when they studied together at the University of Connecticut in 2012.

After spending time together and falling in love, Alex’s time to return home loomed. Not wanting to lose her, Tucker proposed and she said yes.

Alex began to plan her big day, while Tucker said he had the venue booked for August 15, four days ago.

One day, Alex got a phone call from someone claiming to be Tucker’s dad, saying he had been depressed and had committed suicide. Alex described this surreal moment, saying: “The man explained that they had been trying to send Tucker off to a psychiatric unit for help. But it was too late. I couldn’t breathe. It was absolutely devastating."

When Alex called Tucker’s mom, she found out this was not true, he was alive and well but had told her they had called off their engagement.

Tucker has since spoken about his actions, saying: “I’m a terrible, awful person. I know I shouldn’t have told her I was dead, but I didn’t know what else to do … At the time I just felt like I couldn’t tell the truth and thought if I could just postpone everything it would be better.”

Moral of the story? Don’t be afraid of confrontation!

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