My fiance Jack and I have been together for almost nine years now and we will be getting married on 3rd of December this year (not long now!)
Jack proposed to me on a romantic weekend getaway in Halls Gap. We stayed at the beautifully secluded Boroka Downs. The proposal was not entirely a surprise as we had been talking about it for some time and I knew it was coming.
The biggest surprise though was when Jack suggested and decided that we would go to Paris to take our engagement photos! Paris is my favourite city in the world; we were there together three years ago and it was just as beautiful as I remembered it to be.
I searched high and low for photographers in Paris and found Katie Donnelly. I instantly fell in love with her style and the photos speak for themselves.
I was watching the weather forecast like a hawk and we even rescheduled the photo shoot date as the forecast was 90% chance rain for that day. Just our luck, it didn’t end up raining on the original date but was sprinkling away five minutes into our photo session! Nonetheless, Paris is still beautiful in the rain and Katie captured it perfectly.
Jack and I both had a wonderful time with Katie. We were both camera shy and started off awkwardly. However, Katie made us both feel very comfortable and we had a lot of fun. We were talking, laughing, making jokes and before we knew it, the session was over. It felt like we were just spending time with a friend who just happened to be a talented photographer!
Ms Chinoiserie Says: Congratulations Anh and Jack on your engagement; what a special place to have your photographs taken – even in the rain!
With inspired words, Kate looks back on her beautiful Gum Gully farm wedding and remembers that above all else it is important to recognize the significance, meaning and commitment of your special wedding day.
“The best advice we were given before our wedding day was to remember that things will go wrong on the day but to remember it doesn’t matter as the most important thing is that we will both be there to declare our love for each other; everything else is nothing in comparison.”
I’m a passionate freshwater scientist for the Victorian Government and Josh is an engineer technician for his family owned and run business. We met when we both worked in hospitality (I was a waitress and Josh was a chef). We hit it off straight away; with my skills in making a wicked coffee and Josh whipping up amazing culinary delights, it was a match made in heaven.
Josh proposed in late November on a secluded Phillip Island beach as a storm was rolling in. We were the only ones on the beach and it was a total surprise! Our beloved dog Ellie was there to witness the romantic event. We had a relatively short engagement of 11 months. We had our engagement party in January and then it was full steam ahead to our wedding day!
I chose an intricately beaded Maggie Sottero dress after trying on nearly 30 dresses at five stores. I was looking for something different, something not too ‘bridey’ but also something with a wow factor. The instant I had my dress on I knew it was the one; I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. The delicate cap sleeves, the low back and that beading! It was perfection! Jo from Raffaele Cuica was totally amazing at helping me find my dream dress; from the fitting to the alterations I cannot recommend them highly enough.
Josh chose to have his and the groomsmen’s suits tailor-made by Briggins. He wanted to be slightly different to the guys so he chose a grey suit with vest for himself and navy for the groomsmen.He wanted a modern but timeless look.
We looked at venues in the Yarra Valley and were particularly attracted to the country feel of a winery wedding. The Riverstone Estate blew us away as soon as we arrived. THAT view, the ceremony location, the intimate reception room and the massive balcony ticked all our boxes and more!
We had a country-boho-rustic theme. The idea was to have an effortless and fun wedding with a party vibe. Our love for the Australian bush was the inspiration for the arbour style and flower selection. Our special day also fell on Halloween, so one of my friends carved us two pumpkins with the date and our initials.
Our absolute favourite detail from the day was the ceremony arbour we were married under. It was made by my brother Ben. He spent many months sourcing old recycled timber beams, having the headboard designed and then constructing the amazing finished product! The wildflowers and stunning outlook completed the perfect setting.
We had our heart set on getting married outside, which luckily enough we were able to do! It was raining and stormy in the morning but cleared to a gorgeous afternoon. The ceremony was relaxed, fun and short and sweet. As we were about to walk back down the aisle as husband and wife a massive gust of wind took my veil into the air as if it was perfectly timed – and everyone cheered!
We heard the incredible Angus Legg singing at a local brewery the day we booked our wedding venue and we booked him too on the spot! He sang an acoustic version of our favourite song, “Cinema” by Benni Benassi, as I walked down the aisle – this was something that I had organised with Angus and Josh had no idea! There were no tears but I could see a twinkle in his eyes as I walked towards him.
We had our grandfathers officiate our marriage documents and photographs of our dearly departed grandmothers framed and placed around the ceremony location.
Both of our parents have had long and loving marriages and they have always told us not to settle for anything less than we deserve. When we found each other we knew it was a meeting of souls and being married means the whole world knows our love and commitment to each other. It also means we get to grow old together, support each other and annoy the hell out of each other too! Our vows included Josh vowing to do the ironing (as I burn everything I touch with an iron) and me vowing to take care of all the spiders (Josh is a big sook when it comes to things with eight legs).
The totally amazing Erin & Tara were our top photography pick and we were so stoked they were available on our day. They have a classic, natural and not too posey approach to their photography which we loved. We both adore black and white and classic/timeless images, and boy oh boy did they deliver for us!
The amazing bouquets, as well as all the florals at the ceremony and reception, were created by Kim and Belinda at Hello Posey.
Our first dance was to Jack Johnson ‘Better Together’. We were so caught up in the moment of being newly married – it felt like we were the only ones in the room.
We chose to have a cocktail party to keep the atmosphere relaxed and fun, allowing guests to mingle and soak in the gorgeous sunset over the valley. The food was delicious, especially the seafood paella!
The day goes so so fast. Our advice is to make sure you take the time to have a little moment with your new husband/wife, just the two of you, to really soak up the moment. I’m also so glad that we didn’t restrict ourselves with the big ticket items like photography, videography, the venue and our attire. We managed to make savings by DIY’ing the invitations, props, and favours and by having family and friends help out.
The uber talented team at Ice Cream Sandwich Films had us ‘at hello’, literally. The minute we met founder Pep we chatted non-stop for over an hour about our ideas and vision. We loved his natural flare with a twist of quirky. The fact he’s a fellow Staffordshire bull terrier owner and lover is an added bonus!
Ms Chinoiserie Says: Congratulations Lauren and Josh; THAT view and THAT arbour were just perfect for your romantic ceremony!