Photo by Artography
Irma & Dave
These utterly romantic Sydney engagement photos come to us today from Pictures & Hearts Photography who spent a day with Irma and Dave in Sydney’s Centennial Park.
Irma tells the story of how they met. “We were introduced by a family friend through Facebook. I (Irma) was living in New York, while Dave was living in Melbourne. Neither of us expected that this introduction would lead to anything serious. Both of us enjoyed the friendship, we chatted daily via texting despite the time difference, also Skype video chat regularly. After 6 months of correspondence, David decided to fly to New York to meet me. He spent two weeks there, during that time that we officially became a couple. We were in a long distance relationship for 2 years before I finally moved to Melbourne. Although we were apart for so long, we tried to see each other twice a year.”
“We love a natural and classic theme for the engagement. We want to keep it simple (ageless) yet beautiful and romantic. Our photographers are based in Sydney and we flew to Sydney for the shoot. Centennial Park provides such a beautiful nature backdrop for this shoot.”
Irma tells the story of the proposal. “It was during the time I moved back from the USA to Indonesia. Dave flew back to meet me when I had transit in Singapore then flew back with me to Indonesia to spend some time with my family. After a week and half in Jakarta, Indonesia, he flew back to Singapore en route Melbourne with my family where we spent three nights there.
Little did I know that all this time he had planned to propose to me the last Friday we were in Singapore. He had secretly spoken to my mom to ask for her blessing, and had already bought a ring which he strategically hid in his camera bag (which he almost lost at one point… I wondered why he looked like he had lost much more than a camera when he almost lost it… now I know why). Long story short, we ended up strolling through Clark Quay on a Friday night after all his plans to propose on a high rise building fell through due to unforeseen bad weather. After much improvisation on his part to keep it a surprise for me, we found ourselves a quiet bench underneath a lamp post by the river. Come to think of it, it all somehow felt like the setting was all perfectly arranged. As soon as we sat there, he asked me to close my eyes.
When I opened it, he was on his knees extending the ring on his hand. He asked me “Would you do life with me”, “will you marry me?”. I was taken by surprise and paused for a split second before I said “Yes”. We hugged, kissed, and held hands as we prayed together to commit our engagement. As we opened our eyes, David noted that we were right underneath a road called “New Bridge”, which was a coincidence but somehow felt like it held a significant meaning to the start of our new journey of life together.”
“What I love about David is that he is a spiritually mature person, such a family person, not to mention his wittiness. According to Dave I am a sweet and loving person, with a good sense of humour.”
Jess & Jason
If you’re a water lover, this fun tall ship wedding is definitely one to curl up with a cup of tea and pour over. The couple, who loved the fact they could show off the beautiful sights and sounds of Sydney Harbour to their guests chose a magnificent tall ship for their wedding celebration – guests were able to climb the mast and have a truly relaxing afternoon. Just what the newlyweds had dreamt of! Jason of Roundeye Photography was there to capture it all.
Jess chose a beautiful Anna Campbell gown from Savvy Brides as her wedding gown, telling “It is a beautiful Anna Campbell gown from her Ivory Collection called Isobelle. It is made from 100% latte coloured silk, featuring a boned silk dupion bust with padding, soft ivory lace overlay and silk lining. The delicate lace is styled in a scallop shape with gives it a 1920’s look. I also had an Anna Campbell embellished belt attached to the waist band. I matched the look with 1920s style vintage jewellery. I wore my hair down in Hollywood curls and the side pinned back with an art deco beaded bridal comb. My bridesmaid wore a floor length charcoal coloured one shoulder chiffon dress. I loved the colour and it suited the overall theme.”
The bride and bridesmaid wore Converse All Star sneakers. Jess telling, “I chose to wear converse low cut sneakers. I needed my wedding day to have as many aspects of the things we loved as possible. And I’m not very fond of wearing high heels so I knew it would be flat shoes and inspired by my own personal style I chose Converse All Stars. I chose the same shoes for my sister, Alex (bridesmaid). We have a similar style so it was an easy decision and she was super excited about it too.”
Jess and Jason chose Wendy Whiteley’s Secret Garden for their ceremony, Jess explaining, “Wendy Whitely’s secret garden was our ceremony location, which is nestled between Clark Park and the harbour in Lavender Bay. It perfectly suited my love of secret gardens and as I knew that I wanted my day by the harbour it was perfect. It has been a labour of love for Wendy Whiteley, the wife of the late artist Brett Whiteley, whose work was much admired and celebrated in Sydney. Over the years she has transformed it from an overgrown waste ground, treating it like a giant painting. We chose a beautiful little spot in the garden to set up the ceremony and because of the vast beauty surrounding us we didn’t need much decoration at all.”
Jess walked down the aisle to “Only Time” by Enya.
Jess remembers “My 10 year old cousin, Matthew, played violin for us and our guests whist we were signing our marriage certificate. He asked me a couple months before hand if he could play for us at our wedding and of course we were delighted that he wanted to. He had already been learning Pachelbel Canon in D and asked if he could play it. He was so excited and practiced a lot leading up to the day. He is an amazing little violinist and we are so proud to have had him contribute to our day.”
Stephen Lee Celebrancy performed the ceremony, the bride remembering, “He was absolutely amazing and incredibly professional, made for the career he has chosen. We wanted someone young, a male preferably and after typing that into Google we looked no further than the first search that came up. We contacted him straight away and never looked back. He did practically everything for us making it so easy for us and taking a lot of pressure off me. He wrote the most perfect ceremony for us and he couldn’t have been more prompt, organised and fun.”
The wedding was truly a family affair says Jess. “Our beautiful little 4 year old son. Of course we chose to have him as our page boy, there was no question. And he really bought the day alive. He is an amazing little boy and had the time of his life entertaining us and having a great time. It was the best feeling in the world being able to have him at our wedding and include him in one of the best days of our lives.”
Of their photographer, Jess says, “Jason from Roundeye Photography was awesome. After a relaxed meeting with him to chat about us and what we wanted it was an easy choice to make to hire him. His work speaks volumes and it was just the kind of style we wanted for our day. Everything we talked about he understood straight away and with very little explanation he made it happen. We literally only mentioned a few things we wanted, the styles we liked and the structure of the day and he went with it. On the day Jason and his assistant, Philips, just went about their business in a very easy and fun way. It was like they were just very enthusiastic guests following us around with cameras. I couldn’t imagine my wedding without them. They made it so easy to not only pose when needed but also get on with the day and enjoy it without a worry. I didn’t need to say anything, or call them over for a photo; they were here, there and everywhere. They caught everything. Jason is truly an artist and the photos are proof. We loved them! ”
Jess and Jason chose Southern Swan, of Sydney Harbour Tall Ships for their reception, noting, “Our reception was held on the Southern Swan on Sydney Harbour, a completely authentic 1850’s tall ship. We both decided to do a cruise before we chose the venue for our reception and after a beautiful Sunday enjoying the sights it didn’t take us long to book the ship.
We wanted something different. I’m not a fan of typical wedding venues as I didn’t want a traditional style wedding. We wanted our wedding to be a day to not only celebrate our love and everything we love but a day to have fun, just like any other day. I wanted a venue that I would chose for a birthday party but that could be also just a relaxing day with my friends and family. Nothing structured or over the top. And this was perfect. We liked the fact that our guests could also climb the mast as part of their experience, Jason LOVED that part! ”
As wedding favors, guests received tea bags in brown paper packaging from Planet Organic. The bride also made the guest book, remembering, “I created a guest book made from a kraft paper and cardboard binder book from Typo that I paired with nautical themed rubber stamps to go with the tall ship ‘theme’/typewriter letter stamps and baby photos of the two of us for our guests to stick in the book and leave a message. I made the hanging glass bottle vases that hung on the corner of the chairs up the aisle using glass bottles from my old work and natural twine. I also styled the ceremony myself with pieces I bought along the way, including hessian bunting, large letter signage and a soft lace table cloth. I had my invitations made through Etsy but helped the creator design them from one of their samples and put them together myself. I used kraft paper/card for all my stationery and natural twine to finish the look.”
Jess loved the speeches, remembering, “It was only going to be our best man and bridesmaid and my mother saying speeches but it ended up extending to two extra friends and Jason’s father, and even the both of us said something. They were hilarious and really heartfelt. And my mother had written her speech with Jason’s mother who couldn’t be there, that was beautiful and we both teared up.”
Of their first dance, Jess remembers “Our first dance was on deck of the gorgeous tall ship, the Southern Swan. We danced to an acoustic version of Everlong by the Foo Fighters. We had a whole playlist of rock/grunge/punk songs included in our reception but this awesome Foo Fighters song just had to be the one! It really showed us and our love for that genre of music which plays a big part in our lives. Something we bond over. ”
Jessica’s Cakes created a charcoal ombre wedding cake, Jess noting, “Jessica and I went to school together and it was such a pleasure to have her create our wedding cake. It was a beautiful one tiered white chocolate mud cake with charcoal ombre butter cream frosting and gorgeous flowers decorating to match our theme. She has real talent and we absolutely love her work!”
Congratulations on your marriage Jess and Jason! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you also to Roundeye Photography for sharing today’s wedding with us!
Kia Orana! Last month, Mr Polka and I took a fun trip to the Cook Islands to discover all that this much underrated country has in store for honeymoons and destination weddings. Check out part one of my adventures on the Expedia blog
When Mr Polka and I touched down after our flight, the sense of merriment was high. Our plane was filled with travelers returning home for the holidays to their families and our sense of the spirit of these islands was evident with every jolly laugh, every hummed tune and the various headdresses that made their way onto the plane (with no-one but me blinking, I just wanted to steal it and wear that sparkling beauty!). Our host Papatua met us at the airport with a floral headdress as bright as his vivid purple shirt and we knew this trip would be something special.
We spent a day exploring some of the best resorts in the Cook Islands. Each one making the most of the crystal blue waters and brilliantly blue skies. My top picks?
Nautilus Resort – Best for a sophisticated wedding without losing the tropical vibe. Best for honeymooners who are quite happy to lounge on their decks all day (with their own private plunge pools) and then wander a mere ten steps to the restaurant for dinner.
Crystal Blue Lagoon Villas - Best for the intimate wedding. Book our all four double story villas and have the entire property to yourself. Honeymooners will love the fully self contained villas complete with full kitchens, bath tubs and laundries.
Pacific Resort Rarotonga – Best for a big guest list. With so many levels of accommodation to choose from and a well equipped kids club you can bring everyone you love to this venue. Active honeymooners will love the huge range of water sports and activities this resort has to offer.
Crown Resort – Best for an adults only wedding right on the beach. Honeymooners who are after a sunset view every night will love the views from this resort.
Muri Beach Resort- Best for the wedding away for it all. This eco friendly resort has a calm and quiet vibe with beautiful tropical gardens. Honeymoons will love the easy access to Muri Beach and the myriad of places to recharge their batteries.
My full report on the resorts and all they have to offer is over on Expedia
Don’t think this is the end of it – I have much more to share about the Cook islands, including cocktails (of course!) our visit to Aitutaki (the honeymooners paradise) and my Cook Islands bucket list.
The Polkas traveled to the Cook Islands courtesy of Expedia. My tan (Mr Polka doesn’t tan – he remains neon white) is courtesy of the Cook Islands sunshine and still remains. Meitaki for the amazing trip and long lasting memories.
Images taken by Ms Polka Dot.