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Marysia and Brenton

It started with a broken toilet seat, it ended with a festive barn celebration, guests sheltering from the rain – and continued the Polish traditions, plenty of food and you bet there was dancing. This Australian barn wedding is just what I love about Australian weddings – personalities, cultures and life coming together to becoming one big melting pot of wedding glory all captured by Pixie Rouge Photography.

Their story is rather epic and goes a little like this. “It was a weird and wonderful night that Marysia broke Brenton’s toilet seat. Who would of ever thought such a random act would turn in to such a beautiful love story. This story continued at a very respectable day at Dunkeld Cup where Brenton, in all his splendor and courage, asked Marysia a very simple question “are we going out or what?”.

Now I know what all you girls and guys are thinking…. What a romantic, charismatic and smooth way to ask his future fiancee for her hand! Needless to say Marysia could not say no to Brenton and that is what started a love story that will rival no other. It was only 12 months later when an innocent shopping trip for jeans at Chadstone would change their lives forever.

This was the day that a black, energetic and super excitable labradoodle named Rubi was welcomed to the family. Who would of thought that Rubi would take on so much of Marysia’s personality in such short time; cute, fun and so very very needy. After countless trips back and forth from Melbourne to Geelong and a few cheeky mid week dates in Williamstown, it was time to live in sin and so Marysia, Brenton and Rubi moved in together. This would be a great test to them, as the little quirks and idiosyncrasies would make themselves known. Marysia struggled with Brenton’s need to clean up the dishes as she was still eating and Brenton would cringe with Marysia’s want to leave them until the morning. Brenton would also would struggle with all the new rules on how to sort the washing, this is something they still struggle with today.

It continued with many adventures including a six week trip through Europe where Brenton met all of Marysia’s relatives and put on some “love kilograms” (some being 10). Now lads and lasses, I know you’re thinking how can he put on so much love? Well it’s easy when you have the most exquisite woman in the world. It definitely had nothing to do with over indulging in food and wine.

This epic tale struck a momentous occasion when Brenton decided to make the best decision of his life, got down on one knee with much glee (that’s right – got to have a token poem in here somewhere) to ask Marysia to share the rest of their lives together..”

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The day started with heartfelt gifts for one another, Marysia remembering, “Brenton and I early on decided that we will not do gifts for one another before the wedding but rather make it more personal and sentimental. Around Valentines Day I was flicking through the paper and came across Romance Outsourced – a duo that write and record personalised songs. I was intrigued, did some research and once I enquired, the service I received from them was just invaluable. After filling out a questionnaire about Brenton, a few days later I received a song and it was absolutely perfect! It was cheeky, funny and romantic – which sums Brenton up in a nutshell. On the morning of the wedding, I had my bridesmaid deliver the song to him and although I wasn’t there to see the reaction, the photos speak for themselves.

On the morning of the wedding, I received a letter and DVD from Brenton. The effort he had gone to literally blew my breath away. Brenton had organised for all my family in Poland and Germany to send messages – some of whom I haven’t seen in years! It was such an amazing gift to receive and it was the perfect way to start what was the best day of my life.”

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Marysia designed her wedding dress with her mother who made it, sewing every stitch. She recalls, “It was such an honour that my mother, with help along the way, made my wedding dress. I will never forget standing on her dining room table for 3 hours straight in my heels, slowly turning in a circle as mum delicately cut the silk and tulle.

It was better than I ever imagined it could be and spending all those hours with mum designing the dress, choosing the materials and ultimately making it was such a special experience. Most of all, what I loved was how our friends and family came together to help us – it was such a combined effort and this just made planning so much more enjoyable!”

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“Of course my father cannot go unmentioned. I always knew seeing my dad in my wedding dress would be emotional, but I had no idea what came over me. As soon as I knew he was coming in, the tears started and I couldn’t wait to see him! It is so easy to get wrapped up in the wedding plans, that you forget how emotional this time can be for your parents. Even thinking about it now gives me goosebumps – it is such a beautiful moment that I know I will cherish forever.”

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Marysia and Brenton married in the cosy Holy Family Catholic Church Barwon Heads .

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“Looking back on our day, there were so many things that made our day special! We had family and friends travel from interstate and my aunty and uncle (who is my godfather) came from Poland for the wedding which was simply the best! We were fortunate enough to have my uncle be a witness for our wedding certificate as well as my sister in law, which made the wedding ceremony that much more special.”

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For the processional, Marysia chose something traditional played by The Baker Boys . She says, “The song we chose was Pachelbel’s Canon in D, the Baker Boys version. Ever since I was a little girl, I remember watching the Little Mermaid and thinking to myself “that is the song I want to walk down the aisle to”.“

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Marysia and Brenton chose a ceremony format that reflected their relationship, telling, “Our ceremony was very “us”. It was emotional however at the same time relaxed, funny and engaging – our priest was light hearted and joked continuously which was so refreshing, not to mention calmed our nerves too!”

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Marysia and Brenton describe the wedding as, ” DIY eclectic but simple, our wedding was an intimate reflection encompassing everything that we are and everything that we will become; filled with family, friends, lots of laughter and a rocking dance floor “.

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The Barn Wallington provided the beautiful backdrop for an evening of fun. Marysia remembering, “The Barn Wallington had it all really. Such an inviting space with so much room to move. We were really wanting to have a vintage boho vibe to our day.”

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Of their photographer, the newlyweds tell, “The first thing that draws you to Anna is her down to earth nature. We first met Anna when she photographed our engagement in February of last year and we fell in love with her instantly. We felt so comfortable with her and didn’t even have to think twice whether or not we wanted her to photograph our wedding – it was a must, we had to have her! Anna is not just a photographer, she is an artist and her eye for detail as well as finding those quirky one off shots is amazing. Sean, Anna’s partner in crime and also fiancé, took beautiful candid shots which only added to the amazing experience we had with “Pixie Rouge”.

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The wedding decor was a long process, says Marysia. “From the very beginning, Brenton and I wanted a very hands on DIY wedding. The Barn, Wallington is a breathtaking venue as well as an empty canvas which is hard to come by these days. Our wedding was so special because of all the effort we put towards making it come together, which ultimately paid off, was so gratifying and made it that much more special. For a year I collected mismatched vintage plates and our family collected copious amounts of jars for us. I was very fortunate to have an amazing bridal party and we spent a whole day decorating jars with lace, burlap and twine.”

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Adrian Millman – Nomadic Chef 03 5221 4136  catered the dinner while Beer Gypsies sorted the alcohol and Coastal Weddings coordinated it all. Marysia explaining “We organised everything including wine glasses, cutlery, napkins, the bar (Beer Gypsies were incredible!), hand made the food menus and wedding booklets, designed the invitations, set up the venue (with help from Coastal Weddings) and last but definitely not least – I designed Brenton’s surprise wedding band and of course my wedding dress!”

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Polish weddings mean bread and salt and plenty of vodka! Both of which the couple happily partook in.

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The first dance, while impromptu was a hit! Marysia telling “Our first dance was actually quite impromptu and a coincidence. Throughout our relationship, “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz has always been “our” song and we danced to it at our engagement party with the idea of doing an upbeat song for the wedding dance. After the band introduced us, they played an acoustic set and started playing this very song. So of course, Brenton grabbed me for a dance and it became our unofficial first dance! For our official dance, we chose “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” by Queen. We really wanted something bubbly and dancing with Brenton is always full of surprises – air guitar, jumping, dipping and almost falling – I reiterate almost!” The Baker Boys  kept  guests dancing all night long.

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Don’t think the celebrations stopped there, they continued into the following days, Marysia explaining, “An old Polish tradition is to have an after party the next day – otherwise known as “Poprawiny”. The custom of Poprawiny originated from the days when the bride’s parents purchased all the food for the caterer and so “owned” it, eaten and uneaten. Poprawiny was a means of making sure leftover wedding food wouldn’t go to waste.

Our chef, Adrian Millman of Nomadic Chef, is honestly one in a million! He was incredible and designed a beautiful rustic menu where all our food was on shared platters and guests could choose what they wanted. Adrian put all the left-over food aside for us and so the morning after the wedding, we collected all the food, left over wine, beer and vodka and another celebration began! It was almost bigger than the wedding itself; everyone literally let their hair down and danced the day away with the surprise addition of one of our friends playing classic Polish gypsy music on his accordion.”

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Marysia and Brendan, congratulations on your marriage! Thank you so much for sharing your wedding story with us! Thank you also to Pixie Rouge Photography for sharing today’s images!

Photographer: Anna - Pixie Rouge Photography / Wedding Planner: Coastal Weddings / Bride's Dress: Marysia's mum / Hairstylist: Salon Jenaire On the Waterfront / Makeup Artist: Blush Make Up Artistry / Flowers & Decor: Moss Industry Florist / Invitations & Stationery: Etsy / Ceremony Venue: Holy Family Catholic Church Barwon Heads / Reception Venue: The Barn Wallington / Band: The Baker Boys / Catering: Adrian Millman – Nomadic Chef 03 5221 4136 | / Transport: Klassy Kombi / Catering (Bar): Beer Gypsies
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Melissa & Lachlan

Melissa and Lachlan chose a gorgeous rustic country venue for their wedding day – Sydney Polo Club setting the scene for a chic country celebration filled with what Melissa describes as the “best speech ever”, impromptu photos with the property’s horses and plenty of family and friends who flew in to celebrate their marriage. Their day, filled with all its moments was captured by James Goff Photography.

The newlyweds tell the tale of how they came to be. “We met when Mel moved to Lachlan’s school in year 2. We were in the same class from then until year 12 and had always been good friends. Although it was only just after school that we realised just how much we liked each other and started dating. Five years later we got married!”

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Lachlan’ s brother Cameron Gage kicked off the celebrations with designing wooden invitations.

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Melissa chose the “Paige” strapless gown from designer Karen Willis Holmes and paired it with  Tony Bianco shoes, Samantha Wills earrings and a hairpiece by Lisa Gowing.

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Melissa’s bridesmaids wore floor length gowns from Truese. Melissa explaining, “I choose charcoal dresses for my bridesmaids as I wanted them to be contrasted with my ivory dress and then also with the lovely lush greenery of the polo club. I think this turned out even better in the photos then I had even imagined.”

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Melissa and Lachlan chose St John’s Anglican, Wilberforce, telling, “We got married in a beautiful old sandstone church in Wilberforce; which made our ceremony really intimate and quite special.”

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The ceremony was decorated by the bride’s maid of honour, Melissa remembering, “My maid of honour – Sarah – made the dried bunches of flowers that we hung from the pews. We also did little DIY touches here and there but I actually ended up doing a lot less than I thought I would because both our venues – ceremony and reception – had so much character we didn’t need to add as many details as I originally thought I would do for the wedding.”

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Melissa walked down the aisle to Atlas Hands by Benjamin Francis Leftwich.

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Of their photographer, the newlyweds tell, “We knew we wanted to use James Goff after seeing my sister’s engagement shoot photos. We loved having James there on the day. He was so nice and relaxed and just added to our great day. He was able to capture so much without us even knowing. Our wedding photos were something that we both really cared about and we have been so happy with what we ended up with.”

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“During the photos a group of horses starting galloping around the paddock just next to us which was a great sight. They then came right up to the fence and we were able to get a few good photos next to them.”

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The bride’s dream of a barn wedding came true with the choice of Sydney Polo Club as their wedding venue, Melissa remembering, “Our reception was in the Polo Barn at The Sydney Polo Club in Richmond. My dream was to have a barn wedding and we were lucky enough to find this place. The polo club has such beautiful grounds which made us excited to have our wedding there as it was a great place to have our wedding photos.”

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Guests received hand poured candle favors from You Me & Paree.

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PB Catering  ensured guests were well fed – the couple remarking, “The food was banquet style, so it really created a festive feel with everyone sharing food on the table.” Guests dined at long tables hired from Vintage Patina Home.

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On what Melissa describes as the best speech ever, she tells “Our bridal party made the day so fun for us and it was so nice spending the entire day with such great friends. The maid-of-honour speech turned into a bridesmaid song. Best speech we have ever seen. They changed the lyrics to Kiss Me by Sixpence None the Richer, which was more of less Lachlan and I’s “song”.”

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Of their first dance, Lachlan remembers, “Our first dance wasn’t as we had planned. Mel had kept the length of her dress a secret and that wasn’t factored into our practices which logistically makes things slightly harder but we still managed. The dance floor was definitely a highlight of the night. We had a lot of old school songs which made it really fun.”

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Congratulations on your marriage Melissa and Lachlan! Thank you for sharing your stories with us! Thank you also to James Goff Photography for sharing today’s wedding.

Photographer: James Goff Photography / Bride's Dress: Karen Willis Holmes - Paige / Bride's Shoes: Tony Bianco - Hussey Bone Pearl / Bride's Jewellery: Samantha Wills Cupids Trick Stud Earrings - Silver / Bride's Veil/Hair Accessories: Lisa Gowing Headband from The Golden Age collection / Groom's Attire: Roger David / Groomsmen Attire: Roger David / Bridesmaid Dresses: Truese - Charcoal Bella Maxi Dress / Hairstylist: Carly Wood / Makeup Artist: Napoleon Perdis / Flowers: Kerri Hercus of Hercus Design 0425250428 / Invitations & Stationery: The groom's brother - Cameron Gage / Ceremony Venue: St John's Anglican, Wilberforce / Ceremony Officiant: Our young adults Pastor from Dural Baptist - Nic Cassa / Reception Venue: Sydney Polo Club / Rental Furniture: Vintage Patina Home / Catering: PB Catering / Wedding Cake: Family Friend - Michelle Dupen / Favors: You Me & Paree / Wedding Registry: Myer / Wedding Registry: Wheel & Barrow

With Mother’s Day around the corner, what better time to show your gratitude to the mother of the bride (or groom for that matter!) for all the effort and time she has put into planning with you? Or perhaps just showing her that you appreciate her support?

I put together some of my favourite gift ideas for the mother of the bride. Now, let it be said I am a sentimental soul, so memories impact heavily in my gift giving!

1. This Wedgwood Vera Wang Photo Frame from Peters Of Kensington is a classic and I love the idea of presenting it empty ready for a wedding day photo of you together on your wedding day.

2. Palomas Nest has long been a go to store for gifts when it comes to my loved ones. The text bowls are a firm favourite in our home, let alone the rest of the clay range! but what I really love as a gift for the mother of the bride are these hand drawn custom house portraits. As brides can often mean moving on from the family home, or sinking deep into the memories of your time there, a beautifully drawn piece of art paying homage to the place where so much love was shared can make for a very sentimental option.

3. Plum Pretty Sugar is always my go to for gorgeous robes and I don’t think these gorgeous gifts for getting ready on the day of the wedding should be limited to the bride and her bridesmaids – what about gifting your mum something luxurious to start the day in?

4. I love the gesture of a beautiful, embroidered lace handkerchief and this one from Etsy seller CoutureWeddingHankie is a lovely gesture for the sentimental mum. Many Etsy sellers an embroider custom poems on a hankie noting the close bond between mother and daughter, but I’m a fan of the simplicity of names the wedding date.

5. I love a gorgeous trinket box and this elegant option by Elsa Perretti for Tiffany & Co makes for a lovely gift for mum to remember the wedding day and perhaps store her own memories from the day in.

6. I am particularly fond of the beautiful book covers Penguin Classics comes out with for their classics and as a child whose mother read to her a lot, I think it would be a beautiful gesture to give your mother a nice hard cover version of a book you shared together– inscribed of course! This one is of course one of my favourites – Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carol!

7. BHLDN has plenty of lovely gifts for mums but one that took my fancy was the beautiful “Carlotta” wrap. A sheer Italian wrap, it’s an elegant option for keeping warm on the wedding day and beyond and makes for a lovely gift.