Elizabeth & James
There is something about the style of today’s Anne Of Green Gables inspired wedding. The beautiful gardens took the couple on a journey to create a day that drew from a favourite book. The romance is palpable through the elements they chose for their wedding day. They chose Gemma Clarke Photography to document it all.
Elizabeth tells, “I married my high school sweetheart, James, on the 29th of March, 2014. We were engaged for two years before we got married, so we had plenty of time to plan!”
Sheri McCulley Studios created the stationery for the day, Elizabeth noting, “Sheri, from Sheri McCulley Studio made all our stationery for us. She was amazing to work with and nothing was too hard or too much effort.”
Hyams Florist created the floral arrangements for the day. “Our florists, Sharon and Kass from Hyams Florist were fellow Anne enthusiasts and decorated the venue with wildflower-esque blooms. I cried when I saw the flowers for the first time – I couldn’t believe how well they had captured the vision we had for our wedding.”
“The first decision I made was buying my wedding dress. I fell in love with the first dress I tried on, especially after I realized how similar it was to my grandmother’s 1950’s wedding dress. My grandmother was Canadian, and I only met her a couple of times before she passed away, but we bonded over our mutual love of Anne of Green Gables.
On the day, I wanted my outfit to incorporate items that represented the women in my family and Anne of Green Gables. I wore my great grandmother’s pearl necklace and attached my grandmother’s amethyst brooch to my bouquet. My something blue was the same garter my mother wore at her wedding, and my sister/maid of honour and I, who always end up wearing the same clothes, had matching shoes.”
Elizabeth and James chose Bush Bank for their wedding, which inspired much of their day. “James and I discovered Bush Bank, an 1890’s cottage and farm on the NSW South Coast, that reminded me so much of Green Gables. From there, our Anne of Green Gables inspired wedding took shape.”
“I walked down the aisle to the Portuguese love theme from Love Actually. Walking down the aisle was the most nerve wracking and exciting thing I have ever done. I was so focused on getting to James I tripped over my dress and nearly face planted it! Thank goodness my mum was holding onto my arm for dear life!”
“Unfortunately none of our grandparents were able to make it to the wedding due to distance and ill health, so we Skyped them. My grandfather even dressed up in his best suit for the occasion. It was the perfect way to include them without them physically being there.”
“My husband also incorporated his love into our day – he wore Cronulla Sharks cufflinks, and our minister, Paul Stevens was a former Sharks player. James even signed the wedding certificate with a Sharks novelty pen!”
Guests enjoyed afternoon tea and garden games post ceremony, Elizabeth remembering, “To entertain our friends and family between the ceremony and reception, we set up cricket, bocce and quoits. I had to tear James and the groomsmen away from a very intense game of cricket to have photos taken!”
“The week before the wedding was one of the wettest in history. We hadn’t organized a wet weather option and I remember lying awake at 3am the day of the wedding, listening to the storm outside and absolutely panicking. We were blessed that the sun came out and we didn’t have to move the ceremony indoors at the last minute. The ground was pretty wet and soggy, but it just added to the fun of the day.”
Of their photographer, Elizabeth tells, “I had been stalking Gemma Clarke’s photography since I was in high school and choosing her as our photographer was the easiest decision of the whole planning process. She made James and I feel so at ease from the moment we met her. Gemma captured so many beautiful moments that James and I will cherish for the rest of our lives.”
Summa Cakes created a four tier pale pink wedding cake.
“Being big sweet tooths, we set up a dessert bar full of our favourite cakes and treats and raspberry cordial for our guests.”
Elizabeth explains, “We wanted to DIY a lot of the decorations for the wedding. My mum, sister and I spent months traveling to different markets sourcing crystal cut vases, doilies and vintage china dessert plates. My mother washed and starched each doily to create the snowflakes that decorated the walls of our marquee and sewed metres of doily bunting. James made wooden signs and restored an old window to make our seating chart. We had slates with Anne of Green Gables quotes placed throughout the venue.”
One of Elizabeth’s favourite parts of the day was her sister’s speech. She remembers, “I am a primary school teacher, and unbeknownst to me, my sister had organized for my students to write messages about what they thought love was to read during the reception. It was priceless hearing what my students really thought about marriage and love! Instead of a speech, she read my favourite children’s book Pearl Barley and Charlie Parsley.”
Of their first dance, Elizabeth tells, “Our first dance was pretty spontaneous. We had originally planned to scrap it, but when I realised how twirly my dress was we decided to include it. We danced to ‘How long will I love you’ by Ellie Goulding. It ended up being one of my favourite moments of the day!”
Congratulations Elizabeth and James! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you to Gemma Clarke Photography for sharing today’s wedding with us!