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vendors-favourites-bridesmaids only

1. We love how our gorgeous bride chose very elegant and simple gowns for her maids as a wonderful contrast to her beautiful skirt. By keeping the hair, makeup and flowers simple, she created a very elegant and timeless look for her wedding. Image by gm photographics

2. Garden picked bouquets seem to be almost at every wedding, and we cannot get enough of them! We love how this florist has created a neat, yet rustic bouquet through the careful selection of colours and greenery. By adding a ribbon, it finishes it off perfectly, resulting in a picture perfect wedding! Image by Matthew Mead

3. We truly love this image, as it really sums up the current wedding style that all our brides and bridesmaids at Bridesmaids Only seem to be wanting. Mismatched gowns and colours teamed with the beautiful bright bouquets. We also love how photographers are taking time to capture beautiful moments between a bride and her maids. Image by April Mac Photography

4. Who doesn’t love a romantic wedding with just a bit of bohemian glamour?! This gorgeous bride had her maids in three different shades of purple with bouquets featuring tones of each of those hues. The beautiful greenery of the venue provided a perfect contrast to her colour theme, which made for gorgeous photos. Image by Milenko Weddings

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Ms Chinoiserie Says: Such a romantic and pretty list of favourites – your choice of gowns and flowers are so dreamy!

About Bridesmaids Only: Hi, I’m Talia from Bridesmaids Only!  Over the past five years, my mother and I have literally travelled the world in search of the best bridesmaid dresses. And because we understand that every bridesmaid is unique, we’ve made sure our stunning collection from Australian and international designers is home to classic and on-trend designs that will suit all shapes, sizes and tastes.

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For my first ‘Behind the Door With’ for 2016, I’m visiting the treasure trove of food and style that is Ed Dixon Food Design in Melbourne. Very amazing! Ed Dixon have been catering weddings for many years now and stand apart from the rest with their ability to not just transform menus but entire spaces for the couples that they work with.

I arrive in leafy Abbotsford to the warehouse with hot pink writing out the front and pop upstairs to meet owner Ed Thomson. Straight away I can tell that this is a friendly, fun loving office. Lots of bright colours and smiling faces greet me as Ed introduces her staff.  I love that Ed works in an open plan space and uses the glass walled meeting space when privacy is needed. After a big couple of months of spring racing, weddings and Christmas, things are bustling along nicely and the entire space is a hive of activity.

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Around the corner from the office is a packed library with every food magazine, book and recipe collection imaginable, which must be fantastic for planning new menus or just getting some inspiration. Ed shows me everyone’s favourite item, the coffee machine, and the spot with the best light for taking their super yummy instagram photos.

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Next we visit the loft space which is choc a block with food styling props, displays and furniture that would turn any simple dinner into a fantasy dining space. Ed tells me they are always adding to their collection and sometimes the collecting can get a little out of control!

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The heart of the warehouse must surely be the kitchen which Ed tells me can grow quite considerably when required with hired in extra fridges for big events. I see white uniformed chefs preparing fresh, vibrant salads and sorting ingredients in the highly organised space. The staff like to eat lunch together whenever they can and the kitchen is particularly good at keeping everyone healthy and happy with what they prepare. Ed also tells me that they sometimes exercise together and ride their bikes to work.

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Upstairs Ed Dixon share the space with A Vintage Affair, which Ed says are “a perfect match”. Piles of vintage teacups, cake stands and silver teapots line the walls and I can just imagine the baby showers and kitchen teas that could be created when the two businesses work together.

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I can tell that Ed has no regrets when it comes to the space she chose and the location –  it has been perfect for growing the business. With a seven minute drive to the city, fantastic walks and cafes nearby for a quick break, Abbotsford has certainly got more exciting since Ed moved in eight years ago.  Such a great space to visit for couples who love their food!

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Ms Chinoiserie says: Such a wonderfully creative team – with impeccable attention to detail, Ed Dixon Food Design will ensure your celebration is nothing short of perfect!

About Amelia Waddell of Make Your Day Wedding Styling: I’m a wedding stylist and proud store owner who loves to chat weddings with everyone and anyone! I love to talk shop with other business owners (particularly over some chocolate cake!) and am the first to try and have a sticky beak behind the scenes of any event. My free time is spent ‘investigating’ new cafes, stores and events. Make Your Day Wedding Styling is my creative outlet and I love nothing more than that ten minutes just before the guests enter the wedding reception, it feels like a special sort of magic!

Summerfields Estate

Just looking at these pictures you can feel the serenity. After being married at Summerfields Estate & Country House themselves, Joyce and her husband took over from the original owners who had run Summerfields since 1998. With the views a mix of manicured gardens, and natural bushland, with herb and vegetable gardens to provide produce for the wedding feast, Summerfields is a little oasis – just the perfect place to have your wedding. Treat your guests to a wedding weekend on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula with the bonus being your wedding at this beautiful Estate.

Where is Summerfields Estate situated?

Summerfields is one of the little hidden gems of the beautiful Mornington Peninsula, nestled unexpectedly among the native eucalypts. About an hour’s drive south-east from Melbourne, we are just five minutes from the beach and surrounded by some fantastic local vineyards and cafes.

Summerfields Estate - Cameralance

Image by Cameralance

Please describe the homestead and estate surrounds.

Built by the original owners on what was once a farmland, Summerfields is an American Cape Cod style country house, inspired by the beautiful holiday homes that can be found in the North-East of the USA. This influence is reflected in the paintings adorning the walls of the house which the couple have collected from various bed and breakfasts they visited including New Jersey and Cape Cod.

The main house features a majestic hall with fireplace as well as spaces that have French, English and American influence. Each of the six bedroom suites is decorated with a distinctive style. The second building features our distinctive black and white tiled reception room that can seat up to 150 people.

The house is surrounded by semi-formal gardens, a grove of 2000 olive trees and an ornamental lake inhabited by a family of geese. The grounds are also home to many native birds and frequently visited by kangaroos and local wildlife.

Are there rooms in the homestead the bridal party can use to stay in, and to get ready in?

Certainly! In fact we do have many brides (or grooms) staying the night before, or arriving in the morning and getting ready on site. With natural light as one of the key features when designing the house, there are plenty of places perfect for the wedding party to get their hair and makeup done.

We also provide food and refreshments with our getting ready package to make sure our guests get themselves ready in style and comfort!

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Image by Cameralance

Is there space for a wedding ceremony in the house?

As much as everyone wants a beautiful sunny day for their wedding, the weather doesn’t always co-operate! But we make sure even if the weather is gloomy, our couples aren’t because with two-storey floor to ceiling windows and balcony to oversee the proceedings, our great room is a beautiful location in its own right. Some of our couples even pick the room as their first choice, treating it as a ‘chapel’.

Please describe the reception space in the house itself? 

Our reception room features French-style black and white tiles and can be adapted to various styles from modern to rustic. Couples can choose between round, square and long tables with seating for up to about 150 guests, depending on table arrangement.

The reception room also features doors opening onto a patio and our olive grove. For even larger events, we can organise marquees for a reception on the grass.

Is there room for a band and dancing?

What’s a wedding without dancing? Our couples often hire a DJ or even full band, whilst still leaving plenty of space for dancing.

Kylie and Steve wedding 22nd March 2014 Summerfields

Image by Slick Shoots Photography

The gardens are beautiful. What do the changing seasons offer to the bride and groom? Is there a season when the garden is at its most beautiful?

The variety of plants in our gardens are chosen so that there are colours all year round, however we think they are most beautiful around October, when the trees at the front and at the side of the house bloom in all their bright pink glory!

This year we have also experimented with planting a field of sunflowers which will hopefully add a little something special this summer!

How do bridal couples use the garden? 

We have a few spots in our gardens for ceremonies although the most popular spot is our rose arbour which overlooks the lake.

Couples particularly love taking photos among the olive groves and by the lake.

Whilst usually only for larger weddings, we can also do outdoor marquee receptions. Recently however we have started exploring the possibility of having outdoor receptions under the stars, as we do get asked a lot, and this seems to be gaining popularity among brides these days!

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Image by Josh Yu Photography

How would you describe the food you serve? Is it sourced locally, as much as possible?

We are regularly complimented on our food, which is generally quite traditional Australian fare with some Asian influenced dishes as well. We pride ourselves on sourcing as much of our food locally as possible, and even have our own herb and vegetable gardens, so much of what we use is in fact straight off the plant, which is about as fresh as it gets!

Are you able to recommend local wine, beer and cider to use – matched to the menu the couple have chosen?

We have two different wine packages that we offer, and our fine wine package features a selection of wines from two fantastic local wineries on the Mornington Peninsula.

Does the chef have a favourite dish that might be served at a spring or summer wedding at Summerfields? 

Our chef has a sweet tooth so one of her favourites (and one of our most popular desserts) is our lemon delicious, made using lemons from our garden. The dish is simple but delicious – fluffy and tangy, topped with icing sugar and served with a dollop of double cream.

Melissa and James Wedding Summerfields 21st March 2015

Image by Slick Shoots Photography

Do you have a wedding planner to help bridal couples with all the details?

We don’t have an in-house wedding planner, however our staff does provide advice and guidance to couples for planning their special day. We also provide each couple with a list of recommendations for various service providers including everything from wedding planners to cake makers to make the task that little bit easier.

Do you offer wedding packages? 

In the past we have offered a “helping hand” package which included stationery, florist and cake, however we find that most of our couples like the flexibility of choosing their own suppliers.

Is there guest accommodation nearby?

Yes, there are various motels and B&Bs nearby, some as close as a 3 minute drive away, that can accommodate up to 80 guests, so having extra guests stay for breakfast is not a problem!

We also offer accommodation on-site and often have couples and their close families stay the night of the wedding here and wake up to a sumptuous three course breakfast prepared by us!

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Image by Josh Yu Photography

Do you find couples often return for sentimental stays to celebrate milestones?

We recently had a couple come back to stay the night to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary! The husband arranged it as a surprise for his wife and they had a lovely picnic under the rose arbour where they tied their knot. We thought it was such a sweet gesture and he deserves an award for being such a great husband!

The Mornington Peninsula is special because….

Wineries and dolphins… in the same place (almost!)

Thank you Joyce for sharing your story. Summerfields Estate looks like the most divine place to have a wedding in the country doesn’t it? To find out more about Summerfields Estate & Country House visit the website.

Headshot courtesy of Joyce Ng.