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Bernadette & Sam’s Relaxed Margaret River Wedding

by | Australia - Western Australia, Bride, Inspired Weddings,

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Bernadette & Sam

 For me, a wedding is all about the feeling it creates. A feeling of warmth, a feeling of joy, a feeling of hope. Bernadette and Sam’s relaxed Margaret River wedding was all that and more. Each moment carefully thought through to make sure it reflected what they love about their life together and each moment beautifully captured by Merge Photography.

On how they met, Bernadette and Sam recount, “We met at school, became good friends and finally, after high school at age 18, I relented to Sam’s incessant requests for a date. After that it stuck. Having been together from the tender age of 18, we have seen so much of the world together and learned so much about each other in the process.”

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Bernadette found her wedding gown in London at Kobus Dippenaar “I was lucky enough to have lots of options as I shopped for my wedding dress in London with one of my bridesmaids. The simple dress selected was recommended by a sales assistant after trying on too many that just didn’t seem right. I loved the simplicity of the dress and it fit the setting of the wedding perfectly.”

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Bespoke Flowers created the bridal party arrangements for the day.

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Bernadette and Sam chose the family owned Arlewood Estate Winery as their wedding venue, noting,  “The venue is owned by Gary and Marian Gosatti (Sam’s Aunt and Uncle). During our search for a venue, Marian suggested the idea of having it at Arlewood and we fell in love with the idea. It was so easy to organise everything without needing to worry about someone telling us what we could and couldn’t do. It made the experience much more enjoyable.”

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Bernadette chose Real Love – Regina Spektor  for her walk down the aisle. “Bernie chose to be walked down the aisle by both parents, recognising the equal, important contributions they have each made in her life.”

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Maureen Nicholson officiated the ceremony,  Bernadette and Sam noting, “The ceremony was perfect. Our celebrant was the nicest lady in the lead-up and on the day. She made us both feel completely at ease, and really personalized the ceremony with what we wanted. We had our sisters’ read a children’s book ‘I like you’ which was so sweet and summed us up so well!”

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Of their photographers, the newlyweds note, “Merge Photography were amazing. We didn’t notice them during the ceremony, and the natural documentary style they use was just what we wanted. We hate having posed photos taken of ourselves, but they kept us laughing and feeling at ease. And we are so happy with the photos we received from them! It’s going to be a hard job narrowing down photos for printing.”

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bridesmaids in navy

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The couple planned their wedding from across the pond, and still managed to do plenty of DIY, noting, “Planning the wedding when we were living in London was not easy! We relied on recommendations and online blogs. Despite this, we couldn’t have been happier with all our vendors and they all contributed to making the day more perfect than we could ever have imagined.”

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“The flowers at the ceremony and reception were arranged by the bride, friends and family the day before the wedding. The fudge we gave as bonbonnieres was handmade by Bernie and the bridesmaids. All table decorations, seating map, table numbers were DIY and arranged by the couple, friends and family.”

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The wedding had a loose travel theme running through it, with the couple wanting to share their favourite places with their loved ones. Guests were guided to their tables by a world map.

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Sherbet Café and Bakeshop served up a table of the most delicious cakes and sweets checking off the couple’s requirements of good food and drink.

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“We had friends visiting from overseas and interstate, which meant so much to us. To have all our closest friends and family in the same place at the same time was surreal and so much fun! The speeches from our parents and friends were so heartfelt and thoughtful. We felt so loved and supported as we ventured into married life.”

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Of their first dance, the newlyweds remember, “We chose Dustin Tebbutt – Where I Find You. A really sweet, simple song with gorgeous lyrics. The dance is a bit of blur, lots of people watching and taking photos but still very special, in the middle of the grass dance floor under a giant gum tree.”

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Congratulations Bernadette & Sam! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us. Thank you also to Merge Photography for sharing today’s wedding!

Photographer: Merge Photography / Bride’s Dress: Kobus Dippenaar / Bridal Salon: David Morgan (London) / Bride’s Shoes: Rachel Simpson (London) / Bride’s Jewelry: Samantha Wills / Bride’s Veil/Hair Accessories: Handmade antique bought in London / Groom’s Attire: Roger David / Groomsmen Attire: Roger David / Groom & Groomsmen's Bowties: Bartek Design / Bridesmaid Dresses: Review / Makeup Artist: Jen Thomas 0412 442 439 / Hairstylist: Mrs Madson / Venue: Arlewood Estate Winery (Private residence: owners Groom’s Aunt and Uncle) / Ceremony Officiant: Maureen Nicholson / Marquee Hire: Cape Marquees / Hire: Little Love Story / Bridal Party Flowers: Bespoke Flowers / Invitations & Stationery: Epoch Design / Catering: Saul Atkinson Catering / Cake Baker: Sherbet Café and Bakeshop

Anna Campbell “Spirit” Bridal Collection

by | Bridal Fashion, Bride

1
COMMENT

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We know one thing for sure here at Polka Dot Bride – you love the gowns of Anna Campbell as much as we do. Ever since we first posted about Anna, her brand has grown from strength to strength. It’s not a normal day if I don’t see a piece from Anna’s“Gossamer” 2013 Made To Measure Collection  or her “Forever Entwined” Wedding Gown Collection. So we were eagerly awaiting what 2015 would bring.

Enter “Spirit” the bridal gown collection that celebrates the inner beauty of the Anna Campbell bride. The collection bringing to life what Anna see as the bride’s shining on their day. Tulle, beading and silk are adorned with Anna’s signature beading and lace work.

As an off the rack collection, each gown in Anna’s trademark fabric of fine silk, the designs have evolved to allow brides to select from six different skirts options to truly customise the shape and style of their gown. From a  tulle skirt that dreamily floats behind it’s wearer, to the more slimline beaded drop skirt.

The Anna Campbell “Spirit” collection is available via Anna Campbell boutiques and stockists worldwide or through the website. Ms Fleur De Lys headed along to the Spirit Collection launch (read her thoughts on Polka Dot Wisdom).

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Gowns & Accessories: Anna Campbell / Photographer: 35mm Photography / Makeup Artist: Melonie Santos / Hairstylist: Momu Hair

Jemima and Daniel’s Dreamy Flower Filled Wedding

by | Australia - ACT, Australia - New South Wales, Bride, Inspired Weddings,

3
COMMENTS

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Jemima & Dan

I can’t tell you all the things I love about this dreamy flower filled wedding, because while Jemima’s flower crown is amazing, the photos beautiful and the setting gorgeouss it’s the stories that really make it. Jemima and Dan somehow have the luck that on every big occasion in their lives, it pours. So their outdoor ceremony was moved inside and somehow, it just seems to add to the whimsical charm of this dreamy wedding day. All photographed by Thorson Photography.

Their story, is a long one and worthy of a cup of tea (we’ll wait while you make yours! Jemima tells, “As told by our Celebrant, Gina Callan… It was not a case of love at first sight. Dan was a manager at a busy cafe, and Jemima was looking for work along-side her uni. Dan hired Jemima as a casual waitress because, in his words, she was so good looking.

Their first date was meant to involve dinner and a movie but Jemima says that Dan stood her up while Dan says he simply got distracted helping his parents out with some tasks. Later, however, he did take Jemima out for dinner where their friend Justin worked. That evening, Justin encouraged both to participate in a wine tasting and both subsequently drank too much and stayed out far too late enjoying a really fun night together. Each woke up in horror the next day as they slowly came to the realisation that a conversation of commitment and exclusivity had occurred during that fateful dinner, which had rendered them an official couple. They avoided each other for a week or two, with Dan not mentioning much to his friends and family, and Jemima referring to Dan as her ‘accidental boyfriend’. When the couple did break up, Dan’s mum Allison and his and dad Mimmo joked that Dan would eventually come to his senses and marry Jemima and indeed, here we are!

Two weeks before the proposal and when both were looking for a house together, Dan’s mum told a small fib to a real estate agent that they were engaged. This approach was designed to ensure the agent knew the couple were serious about applying for a property, but little did Allison know that Dan had been planning to pop the big question anyway.

When Jemima collected Dan after a pool game with a friend, she noticed that Dan was overly distracted and fiddling with a new pair of snowboarding gloves instead of paying much attention as they drove. Jemima then mentioned their sham engagement and Dan simply responded by saying, “well, do you want to?” “Do I want to what?” replied Jemima. “Get engaged,” said Dan, sounding a little unsure himself. Jemima pulled over immediately, furious as she was certain that Dan was joking and thought this in very poor taste. After several minutes of hurled abuse and a bit of a rampage about this being a “new low” for Dan, Jemima looked him in the eye and realised he was serious. Jemima had honestly thought that marriage was off the cards with Dan but when he expressed that he no longer wanted anything else, Jemima accepted his proposal.

The engagement was nearly short lived when less than a week later Dan got physically sick as he and Jemima shopped for a ring together, with Jemima forcing Dan to look at rings worth more than “much needed” parts for his beloved GTR, but finally both chose a beautiful ring which Dan presented to her just before heading out for dinner in the Flint Dining Room (before it burnt down, of course). The pair have been engaged since May 2011 and are keen to finally change that title to ‘married’.”

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The groom chose a navy suit from Marcs.

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Portia Peacey and Shae at Estella Artistry style the bride and bridesmaid’s hair and makeup, Jemima noting, “Portia and Shae were amazing and did such a beautiful job on all the girls.”

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Jemima chose an Anna Campbell gown and paired it with a tulle skirt from The Babushka Ballerina. She tells, “Mum and I found my dress in a day. It was a whirlwind day trip to Sydney (we’re from Canberra) and it was the second dress shop of three that we went to.

I knew I liked Anna Campbell from all the wedding porn I’d been gorging on, and I knew I wanted something a bit different to the classic sort of white standard. With my dress, I didn’t have that “oh my god – this is it” moment. Or rather, I did, but not right away – I was actually tossing up between three. (two at The Babushka Ballerina and one in another store) – so I sent pictures to my bridesmaids and had a wine with mum and one by one they each came back saying that that one was most “me” – which I had kind of already decided upon. The trouble was, once we decided and made our way back to the store, the shop had just closed. This was my only chance for a couple of months to be in Sydney and I was cutting it fine with the timing of the order already.

My heart was beating so fast and I was so panicked – I think that’s when I knew MY dress, THE dress, was in that shop. – Mum and I knocked and knocked on the door, and the gorgeous girls let us back in for a final sneaky try on, and then I popped my order in and we drove back to Canberra. Phew! I think everyone (especially Dan!) was really surprised I found it so quickly as I’m generally pretty indecisive (I can’t even choose breakfast most days), but mum and I are excellent shoppers and the girls at The Babushka Ballerina made it so beautiful and easy.”

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The floral arrangements, including the bride’s beautiful flower crown were styled by Moxom + Whitney. “Moxom + Whitney nailed the flowers and were really accommodating with all my back-and-forth emails, and what an outcome. Amaze!”

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The rain turned an outdoor ceremony into an inside one Jemima tells. “Firstly, the rain. I was so excited about an outdoor summer afternoon wedding. It had been beautiful and clear and warm for weeks leading up to the wedding. Now, backtracking a bit, Dan and I are known among our friends and family that every time without fail that we try to organise something important, or romantic for one another, it rains. So of course, naturally, on our wedding day it BUCKETED down. I’m talking relentless, torrential rain – rain drops as big as you’ve ever seen, for hours non-stop. On cue, as soon as the girls said “let’s put on your wedding dress,” it rained. And it didn’t stop until midnight. Our little cottage we were getting ready in literally started having mini waterfalls down its walls (on the inside!) The outdoor ceremony area was a washout – people were soaked – cars got bogged – the bus carrying all our guests was half an hour late to the wedding.”

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The couple chose The Stables, A Country Wedding Binda  for their wedding, noting, “We knew we wanted something a bit different, and out of Canberra. We’re also really big foodies, so this was a really important consideration. I think we looked at 2 or three before we checked out The Stables – we both liked the idea of something casual and outdoors, and were really taken with the scenery around Binda. I also loved its namesake as I used to own a couple of horses – all very fitting. We also loved the amount of amazing stuff these guys have in terms of decorations, etc – it was so exciting going through it all and dreaming up the vision!”

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Jemima remembers, “I walked down the aisle to a cello duet of  Trumpet Voluntary (but it sounds horrible with anything else other than cellos haha!).”

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“Dan is actually part Cherokee Indian, so we had an American Indian blessing (translated to English) that his mum read at the ceremony, which was really special. It was great – there’s a bit that says “Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will shelter the other” – and just as Dan’s mum read that line, a MASSIVE burst of thunder happened. It was great.”

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Gina Callan, Licensed to Wed officiated the ceremony. “Gina, our celebrant, was like another mum. She was so careful and attentive to every detail and was such a loving presence at our ceremony and during the leadup of our wedding.”

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“All our wedding photos were under cover, under seemingly useless umbrellas, or ON THE BUS because we couldn’t really go outside. And it was actually just the best. It made it all so memorable and hilarious, and the photos from our crazy rainy wedding day are just PERFECT (thanks Amanda!).”

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Of their photographers, Jemima tells, “Amanda and Annika were awesome. They knew Dan and I weren’t that comfortable with cameras and just kind of blended in. They were the perfect amount of bossy Vs bestie, and were serious superstars. Amanda was so quick on her feet coming up with inventive new places to take photos that were out of the rain (including guest transport bus – some of my favourite photos) and in a TOILET with etched glass! How cool!)”

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“I guess the inspiration behind our day was about love and family. Although it wasn’t a very small wedding in terms of numbers, we actually only invited our families (mine is like – 60 people!) and some very close friends. Neither of us wanted anything that felt too formal or staged, or matchy-matchy, we just wanted to feel comfortable and be ourselves, and for our bridal party and guests to feel the same (having said that, me being myself involved bright peach lips, a giant flower crown, tulle skirt, flower bodice, gold shoes and a rose gold sequin bolero!). We played a bit off the country charm of the area, but I REALLY didn’t want it to just be “rustic”, so also tried to bring in elements of really rich sort of perfumey summer nights vibe and boho elements too. The result was a bit of a wash of colours and textures and I think it really worked.”

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“I loved just all the little extra elements that brought it all to life and all the attention to detail – the tall lit candle sticks throughout the ceremony and reception, hanging fruit balanced on silver platters, vines and fairy lights through the marquee… I loved particularly everyone’s reaction to the pair of albino taxidermy peacocks that made up part of the decorations. I really liked also the setup of the marquee. Each little flower placed in its own little vessel. Perfect. We did the invitations, sort of – we designed them from a download on etsy, re-jigged them and sent them out. We did a stamp for the lolly bags, and we also DIY’d thank you cards – I thought we’d do more DIY but the venue was so inclusive of all of that, it was great.”

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“Annette and her team at The Stables somehow just nailed the day. She had so many decorations and bits and bobs – she even set each table with fresh flowers that matched my bouquet. I think she went through ALL my Pinterest boards, what an amazing woman. And despite the wet weather and us having to be indoors for our outdoor ceremony, everything was just perfect. Better even than had it been outside!”

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Of their first dance, played by DJ Brandon from We Are Your Song. Jemima remembers, “We’re both terrible dancers and were pretty nervous about this part of the day – so we danced to Georgia by Vance Joy, but had organised with our DJ to cut in with Mark Ronson’s Uptown Funk a couple of minutess into it and we called everyone up and suddenly all our guests, even my 85 year old grandparents, were breaking it down to Uptown Funk – followed by a particularly rude track by Azalia Banks, but everyone kept dancing and dancing. During this time Dan pulled me aside, and we stood in the corner and looked out across at all the hard work we’d put in and all the people we love, who had traveled all that way just having an absolute blast. It was honestly one of the happiest moments of my life, right there.”

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“Our DJ DJ Brandon from We Are Your Song was such a dude. He had proper talent, and didn’t seem to mind that we chose our first dance song hours before the event. He even let Dan AKA Dj DTurn (lacking proper talent) have a go on the decks.”

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Congratulations Jemima and Dan! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you also to Thorson Photography for sending this gorgeous celebration our way!

Photographer: Thorson Photography / Getting Ready Robes: Anokhi / Bride’s Dress: Anna Campbell / Bride's Tulle Skirt: The Babushka Ballerina / Bridal Salon: The Babushka Ballerina / Gold Sequin Bolero: Kulayan / Flower Crown: Moxom + Whitney / Bride’s Jewelry: (Earrings) Devine Goddess / Bride’s Shoes: Jigsaw / Hairstylist: Portia Peacey / Makeup Artist: Shae at Estella Artistry / Bridesmaid Dresses: Their own (Etsy, Rouche.com.au) / Groom’s Attire: Marcs / Groom's Bowtie: David Jones / Groomsmen Attire: Sam Catanzariti Menswear / Flowergirl Dress: Handmade by flowergirl's mother / Flowers: Moxom + Whitney / Invitations & Stationery: Brand Concept Co / Venue: The Stables, A Country Wedding Binda / Ceremony Officiant: A highschool friend’s mum - Gina Callan, Licensed to Wed / Ceremony Musicians: our 14 year old cellist cousin Scarlette Eve McKahey and her friend, (cello duets) / Catering: PB Catering / DJ: DJ Brandon from We Are Your Song / Cake Baker: Erin’s Tasty Eats (Friend) / Wedding Rings: The Village Jewellers, Manuka / Wedding Website: My Wedding
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