I love how different these bridesmaids outfits are… such a cute and fun pop of colour! Just confirms you absolutely don’t need to source from traditional ‘bridal’ places. The bride ordered these Oasis dresses from Asos. Thanks to the lovely Anne Paar for sending this beautiful Abbeville Estate wedding our way!!
Jamie and I have been together for 12 years – we started dating when I was 15 and he was 17! Jamie proposed in January 2013 on a secluded beach in Koh Samui (we were in Thailand celebrating Jamie’s parents’ 30th wedding anniversary and after the proposal my parents surprised me by flying to Thailand for a combined family holiday!). We decided early on that we wanted a truly personalised wedding held in one location full of fun, love, colour and acknowledgment of the strength of our relationship and the family and friends who have supported us throughout. Our venue – Abbeville Estate – was perfect for this with its beautifully restored church, homestead and barn all on one site.
Our intimate ceremony was held in the little church (our lovely celebrant was a childhood acquaintance of mine) followed by drinks and canapes on the lawn, reception in the homestead and party in the barn. I wore a gorgeous two piece v-neck and v-back ivory gown – a charmeuse slip beneath a heavy lace overlay with a subtle silver thread running through it – which I instantly fell in love with upon trying it on! My bridesmaids wore floaty cream dresses with a floral print in similar colours to our flowers. Jamie wanted a ‘statement’ bow tie to wear with his three piece light grey suit so my amazing mum made a red and white chevron self-tie bow tie for him and stripy bow ties in light peach for the groomsmen. Our flowers were our big POP of colour – the bouquets had large dahlias, roses, silk peonies and other in-season blooms in shades of red, coral, pink, peach and yellow with dusty miller and other greenery all tied with twine and the boys’ buttonholes complemented their bow ties.
Our reception was a real highlight. The tables were beautifully decorated with chevron table runners that we made and bright flowers in bottles and jars (that we spent hours de-labelling) in our summer colour palette. There were lots of kind and love-filled words during the speeches including an original poem by my dad and original song by Jamie’s dad, which he sang accompanied by his guitar. Following the reception we partied the night away in the barn carnival-style! The boys had decorated the barn the day before with strings of festoon lights and 130 meters of bunting (all handmade by my mum, grandma, a family friend, the bridesmaids and I) and, together with a candy bar, candy floss machine and photobooth, our barn party made for an epic end to our day.
We could not be happier with how the whole day come together, and with our fabulous vendors, and are looking forward to the next 12 years (and beyond)!
Photography | Anne Paar Photography, Dress | Allure Bridals from Felicitys Bridal, Shoes | Jeffrey Campbell Shoes, Bridesmaids’ dresses | Oasis through asos.com, Groomsmen’s suits | Crown Tailors, Bangkok, Hair | Mia Carrie at Essex Hairdressing (styledbymia), Make up | Elise Wilson Hair & Makeup with assistance from Chrisè Page Johnson, Flowers | Flowers by Anna Carrie, Venue | Abbeville Estate, Catering | The Great Catering Company, Cake | Cockle Bay Bake Shop, Celebrant | Laura Giddey, Stationery | Groom, Photobooth | Little Black Photobooth, Hireage of table numbers | When Squirrel Met Bear
It’s amazing how inspiration for your day can come from one single item. In Sonja’s case it was the Claire Pettibone gown she fell in love with. As she explains further below, she instantly knew it was ‘the one’ and it was from this their ‘day in the French countryside’ (albeit in Canada) wedding was borne. The couple married at the groom’s parents farm on Vancouver Island. With a beautiful old barn – complete with mint green roof – it offered them the perfect venue for the relaxed, intimate gathering they had hoped for. After searching far and wide, they were thrilled with Jarrett’s father suggested the use of their barn and fields, especially as the bride had dreamt of a pretty barn wedding since she was a child. After a great deal of effort from lots of friends and family the barn had an overhaul and was ready for their big day.
How and/or where did you meet? We have both been big into photography for years and around the same time as each other we decided to go to photography school in Vancouver. We met in March 2010 on the first day of class…my alarm had not gone off that morning and I was an hour late for the first day. So Jarrett got a good glimpse into who I am right away with that! (when we started dating a few months later he took to calling me in the morning to make sure I was up and going to make it to class on time). At school we found that we worked really well together during shoots and we’d hang out a little bit on our own socially, but dating wasn’t on either of our minds at that point. It was a bit of a surprise to both of use when a romance developed, but it ended up being just the sweetest thing and such a gift for both of us. One of our classmates called it, though, within the first week of school. I don’t know how she knew, but she knew it was gonna happen with us.
Tell us about finding your wedding dress: I think I found a pin on Pinterest to the designer Claire Pettibone really soon after Jarrett’s proposal and while poking around on her site I saw a picture from one of her runway shows of a model in her Provence gown. That was it for me. I was done. I knew that was the dress. It was so different than anything I had ever seen before… I loved that it was cotton with a print! And had velvet patches and gold-threaded lace detailing. And the bustle. Oh my goodness, the bustle. I found a wonderful dress shop in Seattle that represented Claire and was so glad that I liked how how the gown looked when I got to try on the sample…it clearly put out of mind any other dress I’d tried on. That gown inspired the whole look and feel of our day…elegant yet easy-going, and, like the name of the gown suggests, a day in the French countryside!
Describe your wedding flowers: Going with our French countryside theme, lavender played a big role in our flowers. We had our bridesmaids carry simple bundles of it, while my bouquet and the men’s boutennieres were slightly embellished with pieces of eucalyptus. We wanted our flowers to seem like we had just gone out that morning and picked them fresh from the field, so the rest of the flowers we used on the tables and in the décor were mixes of hydrangea, baby’s breath, and other simple flowers. Each centrepiece was different, held in a variety of old tarnished silver teapots, serving vessels and antique wooden boxes that we collected and borrowed.
Favourite detail of the day: Hard to choose, but if have to pick I would go with a very practical detail and say the luxury portable washrooms with flush toilets that we rented. The farm property had no facilities whatsoever and the last thing I wanted was for our female guests to have to squeeze into one of those cramped, dark and often smelly porta-potty units while decked out in their finery. The first thing I booked for the wedding was a trailer washroom unit, complete with water, flush toilets, mirrors and not necessary but fun – a TV and DVD player. Our guests were so thrilled they didn’t have to rough it in their fancy dress clothes! It was one of the things I was actually most excited about for our wedding too… and I was so busy that day I actually didn’t even get to use them once!
Most memorable moment? Hands down we both agree it was dancing with the live band, SideOne, at the reception, especially during our first dance where they performed Patti Griffin’s “Heavenly Day” and later when everyone joined in on the dance floor for a rousing version of The Lumineers’ “Ho Hey”. Patti’s song just described our whole day and our emotions so perfectly and it was incredibly special to have that moment together on the dance floor. During the Lumineers’ song there was just this huge sense of celebration and community! Foot stomping and hooting and hollering…. it’s a good thing we reinforced the barn floors! One of our favourite moments, absolutely.
Anything other details that help tell the story of your day: One tradition that is a part of both of our families is pitching in and helping one another, and it was really neat to see this tradition practiced big time leading up to the wedding. Without it, the day as it was would not have happened. Jarrett’s parents would be up at the barn helping us on the weekends to power wash and sweep out the barn, mow and reseed the fields, and clear the barn out of all it had been storing for years. My sister-in-law helped with the DIYs before the rest of my bridemaids arrived in town and could pitch in. And when my family arrived the week before the wedding they were tireless, along with the bridal party, in helping us set up the decorations, plant trees on the property and run any errand that was needed. We both come from families that care about their members so much and who will do anything in a pinch to help. The wedding really was a way for both families to practice this tradition together, and having our families come together was one of the best things about that whole day.
It’s pretty exciting when you discover new talent… well new to me that is (I’m not claiming to have discovered her persay!) Especially when they live in the same city, are completely on the same wave length and you can meet them for cocktails on a Friday afternoon! Such was the case with the very lovely Anna Kidman, so much so that we had to repeat our initial cocktails just a few short weeks later! And I’m quite sure that won’t be the last. So that being said I’m thrilled to feature this beautiful Brick Bay wedding of Rebecca & Tommy’s with you. The gorgeous bride shares some details of their story with us below…
Tom and I met 17 years ago at Omaha Beach just before I left New Zealand to live in Singapore with my family for 5 years, on my return to New Zealand I was invited to a party to celebrate Tom’s 19th birthday after which we started dating.
In December 2012 Tom proposed. The ring he gave me used his grandma’s sapphire and he proposed in the beautiful Sydney Domain.
My background is fashion and I researched my wedding dress extensively, finally deciding on the “Isis” dress by Sydney designer Amanda Garret. I loved the use of lace and the romantic, vintage feel the dress conveys. For my attendants I chose 3 different designs by Juliette Hogan in cameo cream.
Both Tom and my family have beach houses at Omaha Beach and given we met there we wanted our wedding to be close by. We decide on the beautiful Brick Bay vineyard for both the ceremony and reception for our wedding. We both loved the beautiful glass pavilion overlooking a picturesque lake.
Botanical stylist Annie O created the bouquets, button holes and the wedding flowers. Hand picked designed bouquets using dahlias, babies breath, white roses, tea roses and other seasonal blooms bound with natural jute twine encapsulated the whimsical,vintage feel I wanted. My attendants carried similar bouquets with a touch of pale pink. Similarly the buttonholes were babies breath wrapped in twine. We managed to find two beautiful French nickels bins with twine handles in which Annie arranged masses of babies breath for the ceremony and for the reception soft blue mason jars were used filled with white dahlias and babies breath.
Rather than a formal wedding cake we decided on 5 cakes from Jordan Rondel’s The Caker. The delicious cakes were beautifully decorated with fresh roses adding to the relaxed vintage feel of our wedding.
Our day was magical, a loving, happy atmosphere prevailed. It was truly everything we dreamed of.
The drama of these stunning florals against the black lace dress is so eye catching! Hillary Muelleck wanted to style and capture a shoot showcasing the contrast between these bright bold colours against the rich black. Using a neutral landscape it’s really allowed the colours to pop beautifully! Be sure to check out the film by Nicole Traveller Films at the end of the post too.
I’m completely enchanted by the beautiful florals in this country garden wedding! As always Naomi from Leaf & Honey has done such a stunning job of them, and Maree Wilkinson has captured them to perfection. The gorgeous bride Claire grew up surrounded by amazing English cottage gardens and wanted to infuse the beautiful colours and romance of them into her wedding day with Nathan, and the fact that they both greatly enjoy being outdoors confirmed the beautiful venue of Bridgewater Estate.
How and/or where did you meet? Nathan and I met on the New Zealand dating website Find Someone. It was meant to be; we both kept being “recommended” as matches on our individual accounts. After chatting online first, we met up and yes it’s corny but it was love at first sight. We hit it off instantly, he made me laugh, he loved dogs just as much as I did and the rest is history – after the first meeting we both knew we were meant to be together!
Tell us about finding your wedding dress: I didn’t know what sort of wedding dress I would suit until I tried some on. My mum, my best friend Vicky and I went dress shopping together one Saturday, looking at off-the-rack dresses. There were so many lovely ones. We found two dresses that I liked and just couldn’t decide between them! In the end Mum and I went to see a local dressmaker Sue Hunter who was known for making beautiful wedding dresses. She had made my ball dress ten years prior. I really loved that ball dress so I knew she would work her magic on my wedding dress. Sue quickly sketched up a dress from my descriptions and pictures and it was just as I had in mind! Over the months that I went to see her for fittings, the dress evolved and we made little changes to the design here and there which really worked. If possible, I highly recommend brides getting their dress tailor made for a few reasons; it fits you like a glove so you are so comfortable on the day and you can get it just right as you play around with ideas to create a dress that is uniquely yours.
Describe your wedding flowers: Our bouquets were romantic garden flowers, which were lush, gathered but relaxed. I really didn’t want a ‘tight’ bouquet. I wanted the blooms to be natural and wild, like I had scooped them up from the garden on my way to the wedding! They were in keeping with our colour scheme using a palette of deep lavender, with softer hues of cornflower blue, soft lavender & sage green. Naomi at Leaf and Honey was lovely and a breeze to deal with; her style was what drew me to her initially and she did not disappoint, it was everything that I imagined – just gorgeous and natural. The flowers in my bouquet were purple dolcetto roses, lisianthus, nigella and lavender with foliage of caspia, soft green sage and olive and were bound with lace and twine. The corsages for our mum’s and my grandmother were mini-blooms of the same flowers in my bouquet. The groomsmen and our dad’s had lavender buttonholes with garden foliage, bound with twine. Nathan’s only request was that he didn’t want to wear a girlie flower, so the lavender and the twine worked as an awesome compromise! Manly, but still colourful!
Favourite detail of the day: We were so pleased we chose Aaron Bloomfield to be our celebrant, MC and entertainer. He was with us through the day and into the night. Aaron gave the whole day so much energy and it flowed well. We wanted people to be able to relax outside; so having Aaron not only marry us but serenade us all in the garden with his stunning voice while people mingled and played garden games was absolute magic. He was spot on, giving us the right amount of humour to reflect our personalities and the perfect amount of “loved-up tenderness” that you’d like to have at a wedding.
Most memorable moment? Walking down the garden steps towards the chapel at Bridgewater arm in arm with my Dad to our chosen music and seeing Nathan standing there waiting for me. I had thought I might cry but on the day it was such a happy moment that I was beaming from ear to ear!