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Polka Dot Christmas Gift Guide – For The Groom & Groomsmen

by | Bride, Grooms, Wedding Gifts

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Our second gift guide (see For The Bride & Bridesmaids) is all about gift ideas for the groom and groomsmen. I am always a fan of giving gifts you wouldn’t necessarily buy yourself so this year’s guide is full of the fun, the unusual, the whimsical and the necessities. From chic monochromatic cocktail kits, to decadent dark rum candles, a fun beer of the month club and even a keepsake box for those special trinkets. Some of these we own and love, others have come highly recommended!

Again we have made sure you can find the gifts easily by linking them below. Tell us – which is your pick?

gift-ideas-for-the-groom-and-groomsmen

 

Herschel Supply Co. Retreat Classic BackpackFor The Love Of Meat Book by Matthew Evans, The Hudson Standard Shrub Set, Macchinetta Stovetop Espresso Maker, Williams Sonoma Moscow Mule Mug, MJ Bale Pavia Navy White Hankie, Peter Alexander I Do Men’s Boxer Shorts,  Hunting For George Shoe Shine Kit, Luckies Smartphone Projector, Aromatherapy Associates The Refinery Shave Oil, Urban Outfitters Monochromatic Bar Cocktail Shaker Set
 gift-ideas-for-groom-and-groomsmen

Northface Men’s Montana Etip Glove, James Said Bronson Box, Hunting For George Handsome Hands Manicure Kit, Country Road Open Weave Tribly, Marshall Kilburn Speaker,  Knomo Padstow Laptop Case, Malin+Goetz Dark Rum Candle, Neue Blvd La Cervesa Keyring, Gin The Manual Book by Dave Broom,  Shulbach Dutch shuffleboard, Byredo Mr Marvelous Colonge, Craft Cartel The Daredevil Beer Pack,  BBQ Buddy Smoker Box, Cocuan Leather Bike Toolkit Roll

This post may contain affiliate links. Which means Polka Dot Bride receives a commission if you make a purchase after clicking on a link. As with everything on Polka Dot Bride, we only make sure we include products we love! View our full policies here.
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Hilary & Justin’s Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding

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

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Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Hilary and Justin

If there was a beautiful way to spend a weekend afternoon, then I think Hilary and Justin’s romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens wedding is it. Captured by Fiona & Bobby Photography  everything about this intimate wedding is so very special. From the gorgeous garden setting, the casual reception (with cake and champagne!) and dancing as the sun faded away. What more could you ask for?

Hilary tells the story of how and Justin came to meet and eventually tie the knot. “I sent him an e-kiss on RSVP and he responded with a message. We met for our first date on the corner of George Street & Argyle Street in torrential rain and spent the night at Vivid Light Festival (needless to say we were pretty much the only people braving the rain).”

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Hilary and Justin were married at Royal Botanical Gardens, Rose Garden noting “We chose the gardens because we wanted an outdoor wedding with a gorgeous garden and an undercover option. I wanted flowers everywhere! The theme was garden party. The rose garden was bursting with flowers! And because of the time of year we were blessed with the late winter, early spring flowers; poppies and roses everywhere.”

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

The bride walked down the aisle to Ben Harper – Not Fire Not Ice (performed by Brock Lette).

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

The bride’s sister officiated the ceremony, Hilary explaining “It was really important to us that we had someone who knew us. When she spoke about us it was familiar and personal, making it extra special. We had a very small wedding; only 30 people (close family and friends). We wanted to focus on sharing the day with the closest people in our lives. The ceremony was held in the old sandstone pavilion in the Rose Garden. It added an old charm rustic element, and the garden was literally glowing around us. We wrote our own vows and made our own personal promises to each other.”

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Hilary chose a lace gown from Lover , noting “My dress was by Lover from their White Magick collection, purchased from their gorgeous Strand Arcade boutique store. I knew I didn’t want a typical traditional wedding dress. I wanted simple, elegant and plenty of beautiful lace. When I tried the dress on, I knew it was perfect.”

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Of their photographers, the newlyweds tell “They are INCREDIBLE. We stumbled across them in a wedding magazine. As soon as we first sat down with them over coffee we knew they were going to be our wedding photographers; it was like meeting old friends. They are two of the warmest people you will meet. We chose them because of their love and passion but their talent speaks for itself.”

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Guests celebrated with a cake from Viva Cupcakes and vegan canapes from Forte Catering & Events , the bride remarking “I created warmth in the old sandstone pavilion by adding soft furnishings; pastel velvet & cotton cushions, throws and big floor rugs. I set up little picnic areas around the garden for guests to enjoy. There were picnic rugs, baskets of flowers, cushions and picnic ‘breakfast’ trays.”

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

The bride made each guest a candle as a wedding favor.

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.comRomantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Romantic Sydney Botanic Gardens Wedding | Photos by Fiona & Bobby http://fionaandbobby.com

Congratulations on your marriage Hilary and Justin! Thank you for sharing your beautiful day with us. Thank you also to Fiona & Bobby Photography for today’s stunning imagery.

Photographer: Fiona & Bobby Photography / Bride’s Dress: Lover / Bride’s Shoes: Roni Kantor / Groom’s Attire: MJ Bale / Venue: The Royal Botanical Gardens, Rose Garden / Hairstylist: Amy Chan / Catering: Forte Catering & Events / Musician: Brock Lette / Cake: Viva Cupcakes / Rental Furniture: Harbourside Decorators / Wedding Rings: Diamonds By Lauren

Genevieve & Chris’s Black Tie Country Wedding

by | Australia - Victoria, Bride, Inspired Weddings,

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Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Genevieve & Chris

The magic of a wedding in the country never fails to get my heart excited and the stunning black tie country wedding of Genevieve and Chris, which the couple held on a family farm, allowed them that mix of elegant, chic sense of style with the beautiful country backdrop of hay bales and machinery sheds.  Nikki McCrone Photography capturing every photos we’re sharing today.

The bride, who wore a crystal crown and stunning long sleeve wedding gown, tells us the story of how the pair came to be. “We met at Falls Festival in Lorne for New Years 09/10 – our closest friends still tease us today about holding hands on the first day we met.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

The bride found her Houghton wedding gown at The Bridal Atelier. She remembers “I loved the experience and actually found my dress on the first visit. They were so helpful and a wonderful team to work with. After trying on about 8 different dresses I hadn’t found one that I loved so my consultant Candy asked if she could make a selection, she chose a Houghton NYC design and I fell in love with it! It is elegant and classy and had long sleeves with a boat neck, a silk column gown with open cut-out back and back slit. I paired it with a tulle skirt overlay, with a train which I wore for the ceremony and took off for the reception.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Genevieve walked down the aisle to the classic “All You Need Is Love” by The Beatles.

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Robyn Ferrier officiated the wedding, the bride remembering “Our ceremony was all about love, it’s all you need. We wanted our friends and family to laugh with us and even shed some happy tears, which they did. It was a clear celebration of our lives together so far and the future to come. It was very relaxed, we even had the farm chickens roaming around the garden. We had 2 readings, one an extract from novel Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey. We felt it was a wonderful piece that touched on what we wanted our wedding to be “one of those sweet, significant moments that leaves a footprint in your mind. A photograph couldn’t ever tell it’s story. It’s like something you have to live to understand”. We also had ‘People Are Like Cities’ by Hilary T Smith – it’s a beautiful quote about finding love and the best bits of each other, even the bits you might not are beautiful yourself.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

“We used my sister and brother-in-law’s farm, just out of Watchem in country Victoria. We had the ceremony on the back lawn, where we set up a random mix of seats and church pews and then had wheat coloured market umbrellas for shade. We made sure that our celebrant touched on our very first meeting in ‘our story’ within the ceremony. We love that story so much that we wanted to share it again.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Genevieve tells “I loved the wedding planning! I work in events so to me it was like the best job I’d ever been given! I think my favourite part of the planning was probably the week right before, the energy and excitement that started to rise was just amazing, it was finally time for the wedding! We also decided to paint my sister and brother in law’s house, that was a great weekend, my sister was so happy that her house was getting painted and it was a huge day of bonding with both our families.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Guests gathered in the machinery shed for the reception, Genevieve, who created a lot of the wedding decor herself, tells “So much of our wedding was DIY! We even cooked the meat for dinner! As we had a campground at the farm for a lot of our guests, we put together little survival packs for each camper, a little bag with water, Berocca, Panadol, ear plugs and an eye mask. As it was hot we also made little fans things for the ceremony, a little card with the bridal party names on sticks so people could fan themselves. All of our flowers/decorations on the tables we did ourselves, we had a lot of signs pointing people in the right direction which I painted on some scrap wood. We made a stage for the band and light covers to hang from the ceiling. We made the arch that we stood under in the ceremony. So yep, we did a lot of DIY.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Of their photographer, Genevieve remarks “We used the wonderful Nikki, of Nikki McCrone Photography and we couldn’t have been happier with her in every way! Nikki and I share a very special mutual friend and have know each other for a few years now. Chris and I were looking for someone who knew us as a couple so we had someone with a great understanding of our personalities and what we like. Nikki was exactly that, she was so professional leading up to and on the day. We love our photos; she’s done an amazing job capturing so many little things as well as the big ones!”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

Genevieve remembers ” Our first dance was to Vance Joy ‘Fire and the Flood’ – we chose this song really because of the line in it “Anywhere I go there you are” this really resonated with us as throughout our relationship Chris has worked away a lot. Even in the lead up to the wedding he was FIFO and this song was just a beautiful reminder that we’re everywhere together. We had lessons for our dance and on the night that all just went out the door and we basically forgot the whole thing! There was lots of laughing through the dance and in the end we were like let’s just end it! That’s actually one of my favourite memories, it was so funny.”

Black Tie Country Wedding | Photo by Nikki McCrone http://www.nikkimccrone.com.au/

“One story would have to be when at the end of the night the band played Horses by Daryl Braithwaite – a great song to get the crowd dancing – all of our guests formed a huge circle around us and sang along while we slow danced in the middle – I bawled my eyes out the whole time – it was the most incredible moment between the two of Chris and I, with our family and friends in a gigantic circle around us there was an amazing energy in the air.”

Congratulations on your marriage Genevieve and Chris! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you also to Nikki McCrone Photography  for sharing today’s celebration.

Photographer: Nikki McCrone Photography / Bride’s Dress: Houghton / Bridal Salon: The Bridal Atelier / Bride’s Shoes: Dorothy Perkins / Bride’s Veil/Hair Accessories: Crystal Eclipse Crown / Groom’s Attire: Institchu / Groom's Shoes: Myer / Groomsmen Attire: Institchu / Bridesmaid Dresses: Witchery / Bridesmaid Accessories: Nest Homewares / Hairstylist: Dcoco Hair Salon / Makeup Artist: Salon Mode / Flowers: Flowers By Alisha / Venue: Fairfield Farm, Watchem / Ceremony Hire Items: Breuer's Hire / Ceremony Officiant: Robyn Ferrier / Reception Hire Items: Breuer's Hire / Band: Whispers / Catering: Cafe Jaz / Food Truck: Gourmets Not a Flavour / Cake: Allison van Lint Wedding Cakes / Wedding Rings: Seahorse Boutique / Wedding Registry: David Jones

Debbie & Andrew’s Sweet Australian Countryside Wedding

by | Australia - Victoria, Bride, Inspired Weddings,

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sweet-australian-countryside-wedding20151108_4725

Debbie & Andrew

Where else can you truly experience the epitome of a relaxed, no-fuss wedding but in the Australian bush? Debbie and Andrew chose rural Victoria for the setting of their sweet Australian countryside wedding, as they both love the outdoors, and we couldn’t love it more if we tried. The couple op shopped and sourced items second hand to create their handmade day, and had the help of their family and friends to help bring their laid-back, bush wedding to life. They chose Georgia Verrells to capture the magic of their day.

Of how they came to be, Debbie remembers, “Andrew and I met during the first week of our undergraduate degree at LaTrobe University in Bendigo, over 10 years ago! He was a country boy and I was a naive, city girl both living away from home for the first time. We were studying and lived on campus in neighbouring dwellings. We became virtually inseparable. One of our lecturers even came to call us ‘boyfriend and girlfriend’ if he ever caught us chatting or holding hands in classes, which at the time was mortifying!”

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“From the very get go I was adamant that I didn’t want to spend an absolute fortune on a wedding dress that I would only get to wear for one day. I trawled the internet looking for a second hand wedding dress, and found an amazing site called Still White. I found myself drawn to a particular dress by Jack Sullivan owned by a girl in Brunswick. My mum and I were spending a girls day together, so we decided to contact the owner and try it on. It was the first and last dress I tried. I loved it, mum loved it and the owner was so lovely that we bought it on the spot! I have since re-sold it on the same website to another beautiful bride, so the dress will have at least three seperate days to shine.”

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The flowers were sourced from markets; Azalea at South Melbourne Market and Chorley’s Wholesale Florist in Croyden, and were then assembled the day before by some family friends and the couple’s mums. “It turned out to be really special that the bouquet was made by both my mother and my mother in law – two very talented ladies,” gushes Debbie, about this beautiful, special touch to the day.

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Andrew’s suit finding experience was one of the most memorable and fun events leading up to the wedding for him. Debbie explains, “We decided to lash out and see a tailor because we figured, unlike the wedding dress, this suit will have many outings. One of the guys at our go-to coffee stop was also getting married around the same time, and was getting a suit made at Oscar Hunt in Hardware Lane. On his advice, we visited the amazing workshop and were immediately in awe of the extremely talented staff and suits. It is an incredible space with beautiful suits and accessories on display, a well stocked bar (made to be sampled) all whilst being able to watch the talented tailors working their magic on the suits. The whole process of choosing the fabric, style, fittings, communication and advice was second to none. Andrew can’t wait to have another occasion where he is needing a beautiful suit so we can go back!”

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The bride walked down the grassy aisle, accompanied by her parents, to Peter Gabriel’s “Book of Love.” The wedding was held on a Sunday as the bride and her family are Jewish, so traditionally don’t get married on a Friday or Saturday. The couple stumbled across a property called Saladin Lodge, owned and operated by Kim Rycroft, in Victoria. The lodge is a stunning bush retreat that caters to events and has accommodation on site. “Kim is an incredible person, and was so helpful taking our every whim into her stride. As we were asking our family and friends to travel a fair distance from Melbourne, we chose to have a lunch time wedding so the guests wouldn’t be driving back in the dark. Kim didn’t bat an eyelid when, half an hour before the ceremony was due to start, we requested that she open her cafe to serve coffee after the ceremony finished to our guests who had driven a few hours to be there,” Debbie gushes.

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“Our celebrant, Lyn Rechnitzer, was the reason our ceremony ran smoothly. Both Andrew and I are pretty laid back (perhaps a little bit too laid back!), so it was very lucky that we had her to bring the entire wedding ceremony together for us. Lyn was an incredible celebrant – we both knew from the moment we met her that she was the one for us. She has an amazing calmness which made us feel comfortable the moment we met her. She also helped us incorporate Jewish elements within the wedding such as circling the groom, a Chuppah, breaking a glass and a translated reading of the Seven Blessings. The ceremony itself was also so much fun! We wrote our own vows which were a surprise to each other on the day. Everything else in the wedding was so well planned, so not knowing each others vows provided something special and unknown to look forward to on the big day. We still can’t believe how much fun it was to get married!”

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“Our photographer Georgia Verrells was really special. Her photos are un-posed, documentary style which was exactly what we, as a super relaxed couple, were looking for. Her photos told a beautiful story which we love looking back on with huge smiles on our faces.”

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Debbie was extremely impressed with Kim, the owner of Saladin Lodge, telling, “She really did think of everything! She even had a bucket of apples ready for us to feed the horses, just in case we wanted to have photos taken with them. This ended up being a really lovely moment we shared with our little cousins who were also flower girls.

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The couple held their reception at the gorgeous Narbethong Community Hall. The bride remembers, “Finding a venue was one of the hardest wedding organising tasks. We had strict criteria of needing it to be within driving distance of Melbourne, allowing self catering, freedom to set up and decorate as we chose and not over our budget. We spent many fun weekends driving around the state looking for the perfect hall. As I was working in Healesville at the time, I naturally started searching the local surrounds, as we all know how beautiful the Yarra Valley is. We found an amazing community run hall in the tiny village of Narbethong, half an hour through the Black Spur from Healesville. The hall itself was absolutely stunning, and so much more beautiful than anything we had dreamed of! It is an architecturally designed timber hall, with beautiful undulating hills as a backdrop. The hall committee were so lovely to deal with, and made the whole process a breeze.”

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“To encourage our families and friends to mingle, instead of a sit down meal we hired food trucks and a drinks caravan to supply the bulk of the reception drinks and nibbles. This required many, many nights of following food trucks around town to decide on our favourites – not an easy task! We ended up choosing Taco Truck and Trailer Made, with drinks served by a beautiful caravan called The Wandering Woodsman. They were all very professional, and each added a special touch to our wedding, as well as yummy food and drink! The Wandering Woodsman were even kind enough to lend us some lawn games, which were loved by young and old.”

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The couple went to great lengths to create their handmade wedding. Included in the DIY of their wedding was a downloadable invitations suite from Etsy, which they used to collate and print their own invitations, using paper from The Paper Empire. The bunting and glass jar decorations were all sourced from Gumtree, and Debbie visited “almost every op-shop in Melbourne” finding cake stands for the dessert buffet, which was catered by her mother, the groom’s mother and the groom. The bride readily admits that she is not the baker in the family! Andrew made the blackboard signage for their day, which were painted by the bride. The wood slices for the centrepieces were created by the father of the groom, and the wood stumps for the ceremony aisle were from fallen limbs from the family farm!

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Due to their shared love of cheese, the bride and groom naturally opted for a cheese tower instead of a traditional wedding cake. The cheese was sourced from Anna at Coldstream Dairy, which was just down the highway from their wedding venues. “Anna was so lovely to deal with, and even let us choose the cheese wheels ourselves the week before the wedding so we knew exactly what to expect. We incorporated this as part of our entree and paired them with a crackers, fruit and nut buffet proving a big hit!” tells Debbie.

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Congratulations Debbie and Andrew, and thank you for sharing your very sweet day with us! Thank you also to Georgia Verrells for sharing their wedding with us.

Photographer: Georgia Verrells / Bride’s Dress: Jack Sullivan Bridal (Second Hand) / Bride's Dress Website: Still White / Bride’s Shoes: Bared Shoes / Bride’s Jewellery: Bentleigh Jewellers / Groom’s Attire: Oscar Hunt / Groom's Shoes: Country Road / Socks: Happy Socks / Hairstylist: Michael A. Morris Hairdressing Salon / Flowers: Chorley's Wholesale Florist / Flowers: Azalea Flowers / Invitations & Stationery: The Paper Empire / Ceremony Venue: Saladin Lodge / Ceremony Officiant: Lyn Rechnitzer / Reception Venue: Narbethong Community Hall / Reception Music: SoundScape / Favors: The Little Plant Shop / Catering: Trailer Made / Catering: Taco Truck / Catering: The Wandering Woodsman / Cheese Tower: Coldstream Dairy / Photo Booth: Memory Maker Photo Booths / Rings: Bentleigh Jewellers
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