Michelle McDermott of Dream Irish Wedding is a renowned destination wedding planner. I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside Michelle at many weddings throughout the years, as the official wedding videographer for her clients. Her weddings are like works of art, and she’s incredibly passionate about creating unforgettably memorable wedding days for her national and international clientele.
Michelle recalls, “I first heard about it being in China but never for one minute did I see it spreading… I felt it would be similar to SARS, which hadn’t effected us really. The first cancellation was just before lockdown. A couple from the USA whose wedding was due to happen on the 19th of March just cancelled it on the 12th, one week prior to the actual day and one day before they were due to fly to Ireland for it. Within days their venue Adare Manor where they were due to have it was closed and Ireland was in lockdown Phase 1.
And from there it has been a steady flow of postponements with all of our weddings up to and including August postponed and while September weddings are hanging in there, some of which are postponements from earlier this year, who knows if they will actually go ahead. Particularly as all of them are couples/guests from USA. So while Ireland will be open for weddings the current 14 day isolation on arrival into Ireland will mean travelling is not an option for them.”
Watching Michelle work with her couples, I know she has an authentic connection with them, and will only offer real and sound advice. But I know that this pandemic must have affected her emotionally.
“Emotionally, I have felt for each and every one of my couples”, Michelle says. “The biggest day of their lives, many planned in another country, just to fit the fairytale, gone in one sweep.
All couples have been very level headed and reasonable but in their own words this is because they have been greatly helped by having a wedding planner who looks after cancelling/re-booking/re-contracting/negotiating new prices and sending out date changes to their guests for them. In summary, they just have to choose the new date from selection I bring to the table. I have suggested, out of respect to their guests, that they contact their guests to advise of cancellation personally…”
“I would like to take this opportunity to compliment and say thank you to all of our venues & vendors who have been so helpful & really gone way beyond their remit to accommodate postponements. They really have made my job so much easier and our clients all coming in from overseas have seen Irish venues & vendors being a lot more accommodating than some of what they are seeing in their own country!”
And is Michelle concerned or anxious about the future? “I do of course worry about the future of my business but am very positive about how resilient the wedding industry is and we will be back bigger and better than ever all be it with some variances…”
“We must go forward with strength, hope & excitement, our clients & future clients need this.”Michelle McDermott, Dream Irish Wedding
And some sound last words of advice from Michelle: “Engage a professional wedding planner whose clarity, trust and connection to their clients will take you down the aisle stress free. This is a moment in time which we will get through and you WILL have your fairytale wedding.”