Our wedding story: ‘We’re so fortunate to have the choice to marry the person we love’

Siobhan O’Keeffe and Finian Murphykept their guests entertained with a specially made wedding newspaper


Each Saturday on irishtimes.com/weddings we'll report on couples’ love stories. We'll tell the tales and show the pictures of these fabulous weddings, large or small, simple or extravagant, in Ireland and abroad. Click here to read more stories

Siobhan O’Keeffe and Finian Murphy went to each other’s debs as students at St David’s Secondary School in Greystones and became engaged on October 5th, 2013, on the windy rooftop of their apartment block on Dublin’s Barrow Street.

Their friends had recently celebrated their wedding at Ballybeg House in Co Wicklow, which Finian and Siobhan loved, so they set a date there for November 7th, 2014.

The bride found her dress at The Vintage Bride in Dublin and the groom wanted something Irish, and settled on tweed “because of the venue and time of year, and I have it for winters to come”.

On the wedding eve, the couple had dinner at Ballybeg with their parents Brian and Josephine O’Keeffe and Bill and Bairbre Murphy, siblings and the wedding party.

Bridesmaids were Siobhan’s sister Orla O’Keeffe and friends, Anne-Marie Griffin and Emma Hennessy. The groomsmen were Liam Murphy, the groom’s brother, and two friends Dave McCabe and Ruadhan Barry. Ruadhan’s wife Claire Barry (clairebarry.ie) was the hair stylist and it was their wedding that inspired Finian and Siobhan’s.

Emma Sides officiated at the Humanist ceremony which included songs by friends and family, hand-binding, a reading from the Bible, poetry, moments of reflection, and vows which the couple wrote themselves.

At the end, Finian’s aunt and godmother Edel spoke about the meaning of marriage. It was, said her godson,”probably the moment everyone spoke about afterwards”.

IMG_1044_WEBThe newlyweds walked out to Fleetwood Mac’s Everywhere and while they were having their photos taken, their 130 guests were kept entertained by an eight-page newspaper, Ballybeg Times, that included mention of everyone at the wedding.

Motown band, The Dionnes, made for sweet moves from the dance-floor and the couple had their first dance to Etta James, At Last.

The next day, a sing-song ensured the hot-tub at Ballybeg was used until 5am for the second night in a row.

Afterwards, Siobhan and Finian spent a week in Dingle and Killarney.

“We’ll look back thinking how fortunate we were to have the choice to marry the person we love. A choice we hope everyone will have after May 22nd this year.”


We’d love to hear your wedding story. If you’d like to share it with our readers email weddings@irishtimes.com with a photograph and a little information about your big day

Photographs: Julie Ann Matkin, halfadreamaway.com