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Vi & Yuki’s Manly Engagement Photos

by | Bride, Engagements


Vi & Yuki

Today we have a gorgeous Manly engagement shoot from David Henry Photography. Manly has some amazing backdrops, even past the Corso and typical beaches. Vi and Yuki love Sydney and wanted to make sure their engagement photographs captured the beauty of the landscape.

Yuki tells their story. “I was born and raised in Guangzhou,  China, studied nursing at university in China and then worked as registered nurse for 7 years. As an adventure/challenge to myself, I traveled to Australia to study nursing in the hope to work in Australia as nurse. My cousin lives in Australia so transition to a foreign land was made easier with her help. 1.5 year into studies here, my cousin introduced me to Vi who was working at the same company. This is where our story begins.”

“We talked to each other frequently before first meeting but when we first meet, we both knew it was something special.”

“It was a simple date, coffee and cake in cafe in Parramatta… it needed to be short as I was studying for my  finals while doing assignments (I is a notorious last minute crammer!) We both love Sydney for its variety, we both get to eat lots of amazing food which we both love….though we do have a bias to Asian cuisine.”


“As we both have very different backgrounds our tastes in music/movies vary greatly but we like the fact we can both bring something different to the table and enjoy it equally. We both like to snowboarding and traveling.”

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Claire and Kez’s Fun Harbourside Wedding

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


Claire and Kez

The love the fun and vibrancy of the wedding of Claire and Kez. I think it started when the vibrant orange bouquet appeared and continued as I saw Claire crack up laughing. Marrying against Sydney’s harbour waters, the couple infused their day with a relaxed atmosphere and had plenty of beautiful moments with their guests.

Claire recalls how they met. “Kieran and I met through a mutual friend out one night in Coogee and it grew from there!”

Photos are by Thomas Stewart Photography. I love how he has captured the relaxed, happy feel of Claire and Kez’s wedding day,

Claire wore a simple gown from  Charlie Brown and added a belt made by Luc Diaz Couturier . She added shoes with a sweet crystal bow from Tony Bianco, a hair clip and earrings from  Mimco and bracelet from Swarovski from Alison Jewellers.

Jodie McGregor Flowers created the vibrant bouquets.

Claire used hairstylist Lisa Losanno from Riva Hairdressers & makeup artist  Carla Demos-Jones from Much Make Up.

Claire’s bridesmaid wore a gown from Alannah Hill, shoes from  Tony Bianco and a hair clip and earrings from Mimco .

Claire and Kez had a “first look”. Claire explains “Kieran and I had the majority of our photos taken before the wedding ceremony, which I guess is a bit unusual. We wanted to spend as much time as we could with our friends and family celebrating our marriage so decided to meet beforehand for photos.”

“After discussing this idea with Tom (the photographer), he arranged with Kieran a special meeting place. On the wedding day, my sister Pip (the bridesmaid) liaised with Tom and he set it up and planned it so that we had ‘that moment’ where we saw each other for the first time, which was exactly what we were after. Tom photographed it all unfolding and did an amazing job. He positioned Kieran up on Observatory Hill, facing away from where Pip, my Dad and I were.”

“When Pip got the signal from Tom, she joined Scott (the best man) and my Dad, Howie up on the hill to watch while I walked up right behind Kieran. On Tom’s call, I tapped Kieran on the shoulder. He turned around and when we saw each other it was so exciting, fulfilling, emotional and happy. This was my highlight – it was very personal to the kind of couple we are and a great way to kick off the celebrations!”

Kez and his groomsman wore suits from Oxford and shoes from Windsor Smith.

Claire and Kez held their ceremony and reception at Simmer On The Bay. Claire says “I loved keeping the whole event in the one spot, no driving around in between ceremony and reception, no waiting, just us with all of our friends and family.

Simmer on the Bay was just gorgeous. The Staff at Simmer were very helpful from the beginning and nothing was ever too much trouble. They ensured that every last detail was attended to and that we did not have to worry about a thing on the day.”

Claire walked down the aisle to Hijomalind by Sigur Ros.

Claire loved “Having so many people who are so important to us together, in the one place made the wedding incredibly special.” The couple were married by Christopher Stalley ( 0413 627 070 )  with music performed by Impression DJs.

Tom is a brilliant photographer and an all round great guy. When we first met Tom, we immediately felt comfortable with him and loved his natural and unimposing shooting style. His images perfectly captured all the amazing moments of our day!

Claire and Kez held their cocktail reception at Simmer On The Bay and hired extra furniture from Hollywood For Hire . Claire remarks “We supplied all the menu cards, menu holders and candle decorations. Simmer have this fabulous green feature table that a family friend, Lynne Stalley, decorated with her amazing collection of antiques. We hired and bought in some additional tables and seating as this was a cocktail style reception but we still wanted people to be able to move around and take a seat when they wanted.”

Impression DJs kept guests on the dance floor. For their first dance, Claire recalls “We danced with no choreography or planning, just us together, rocking happily to ‘Islands’ by The XX.”

Photographer: Thomas Stewart Photography / Bride’s Dress: Charlie Brown / Bride's Belt: Luc Diaz Couturier / Bride’s Shoes: Tony Bianco / Bride’s Veil/Hair Accessories: Mimco / Bride’s Jewellery: Mimco / Bride’s Jewellery: Swarovski from Alison Jewellers / Groom & Groomsmen Attire: Oxford / Groom's Shoes: Windsor Smith / Bridesmaid Dresses: Alannah Hill / Bridesmaid Shoes: Tony Bianco / Bridesmaid Accessories: Mimco / Hairstylist: Lisa Losanno from Riva Hairdressers / Makeup Artist: Carla Demos-Jones from Much Make Up / Flowers: Jodie McGregor Flowers / Invitations & Stationery: Vistaprint / Rental Furniture: Hollywood For Hire / Venue: Simmer On The Bay / Ceremony Officiant: Christopher Stalley 0413 627 070 / Ceremony Musicians: Impression DJs / DJ: Impression DJs / Transport: Sydney Crown Limousine / Wedding Registry: Wedding Gifts Direct

Friday Roundup

by | Blog News, Bride


Tashi and Kristian’s Bali Destination Wedding  Photo by Julian Wainwright.

Happy Friday! What did you get up to this week? I wrote. A lot. The lovely Ms Gingham is about to send out our monthly newsletter too, so make sure you have subscribed (she even made four leaf clovers, this is exciting in the polka dot world!)

On Polka Dot Groom

When Simon married Sarah, his cool groom style stood out

A great idea for would be grooms – How Do I Love Thee proposal tags – read the story here

Marc shares his favourite memories of his wedding day

On Polka Dot Wisdom

Sarah Stevens editor of Australian magazine, Bride To Be shares her story

The super talented Rita from Blooming Brides, shows us how to let flowers from the garden ‘do their thing’

Sarah from Simple Things Press shares her favourite photographers with us in our Vendor’s Favourite

Our new groom visits the Peter Rowland Wedding Showcase

On Polka Dot Made

A roundup of garlands to use as your backdrop from Etsy

A cute name for a cute script on Tuesday Type – Nelly script

Nat of Dear Little House shares her tutorial on sweet lolly bag bonbonniere complete with tags, buttons and twine

Make delicious Sangria for your next party using our recipe

On Polka Dot Weddings

James and Joanne share a mutual love of tennis and used this in their engagement shoot

Katie shows us her save the date cards that she designed herself – fun, quirky and oh, so artistic!

Jesse and Kirrily were married in an intimate and  relaxed ceremony in the Secret Garden at Lavender Bay

Ask Ms Polka Dot returns with cherry blossom wedding decor ideas

On Polka Dot Honeymoons

You can almost smell the frangipanis at Tashi and Kristian’s Bali destination wedding

Around the wedding world this week….

Our next newsletter hits email inboxes in a few hours! The Polka Dot Circle is absolutely packed  with inspiring ideas, sneak peeks, shopping guides, inspiration, DIY project and more!. Head on over and subscribe for your exclusive content!

Yay! The lovely Mandy and her Savvy Brides team will soon be stocking the gorgeous gowns of Elizabeth Dye! They’ll have four beautiful styles to choose from so visit the Savvy Brides site to make your appointment and try on the pretties!

The Sydney Wedding Registry has a long list of exciting developments!  Firstly, they’ve teamed up with Riedel to offer couples who create their registry with them during March a set of 4 Vinum Shiraz stemmed glasses with a complimentary bottle of Tar & Roses Heathcote Tempranillo once their registry reaches $4000 in purchases. If they make it to $6000, they’re offering a set of 8 glasses wine their bottle of wine! Check out the website for more.

They’ve also been thrilled to announce a number of winners- of spa treatments and four KitchenAid Mixers! If you’re a winner and a Polka Dot reader let me know (we love Polka Dot winners!)


A secret squirrel sent this to me during the week. I can’t tell you any more about it yet (you know how good I am at keeping secrets!) But if you’re in Adelaide, save the date!

Melbourne florist Kate Hill has opened their brand new retail store on High Street, Prahran. The store is located at 537 High Street, Prahran and means everyone can experience the beautiful blooms and arrangements Kate produces. There’s a private meeting room for wedding consultations, rows and rows of gorgeous blooms and even space for a nursery in the future! Check out their website for more.

Rounding off this week with a video from a Polka Dot Bride reader! You may have seen it before- it made it to the Today Show after all! But I was thrilled to hear from one of the bridesmaids (who was recommended to our site after the bride used us for her own wedding!) at the special day who spent three weeks learning this number!




Vintage Beach Wedding Inspiration

by | Bride, Inspiration Shoot, Wedding Inspiration


I feel a little spoilt! Today I  showcase the result of a competition for a styled shoot held last year, but the best part? The winner was the gorgeous Nicky of Chasing Rainbows, Kissing Frogs. Nicky joined a glamorous team of Queensland wedding vendors to create a vintage beach inspiration shoot. Together, the team used rich, jewel toned colours and created a different kind of “beach wedding”.

Nicky (with her fingers on the pulse of weddings) loved the new take on beach vintage styling. She explains  “Vintage styling is a huge trend in weddings right now. When you think of a rustic vintage theme, more often then not you think of a country or garden setting, but that doesn’t always have to be the case. With all the beautiful beaches here in Queensland (and Australia) it is a popular setting for couples to marry at. But beach weddings no longer have to be themed around seashells, frangipani flowers and sail boats. The beach and vintage styling are a match made in wedding heaven. The combination of natural hues, rustic textures and raw elements are key to planning a picture-perfect vintage beach theme. Add in a glamorous boho styled gown, natural make-up and a bare-footed groom… et voila … a glamorous chic vintage beach wedding.”

Little Gray Station styled and supplied the props for the shoot.”Aged gold goblets and cut crystal vessels were given a whole new purpose adorned with whimsy flowers including hydrangeas, seaside daisies and wisteria. “We set the sweet table high on a sand dune to be framed by the spectacular white sand and clear blue water at Salt Beach, Kingscliff. The antique gold cake by Deliciously Decadent Cakes was decorated with raw twigs and took centre place alongside other delicious treats,” said Judi of Little Gray Station. It’s important that your theme fits your chosen venue and that everything looks natural and not over-done. The beach evokes a relaxed and understated ambiance, so the natural, earthy colour story of ivory and green with highlights of gold and plum, allowed for the natural scenery of the beach to shine.””

“Inspiration for this shoot was taken from Little Gray Station’s newest collection of vintage furniture and accessories. Judi from Little Gray Station explains, “Many natural elements were included in the styling, like rustic brown tables, pieces of drift wood and vintage-inspired accents including wooden box crates, antique crystal and pewter platters.” Imbue Weddings created the white floral arrangements.

“After a sip of the fresh raspberry mojito, it was time for the couple to take a romantic beach walk.  I chose a glamorous gown from Brisbane’s leading bridal designer, Darb Bridal Couture. We are so used to seeing Brad Webb create amazing full ball gowns for brides but he creates some stunning slim-line gowns too. I knew straight away that his “Rosanna” design would be perfect to add a bit of glamour to the shoot. The gown is an ivory silk chiffon kaftan with fluted sleeves and embellished with Swarovski crystals. The gown felt like butter on my skin, it was beautiful and sublime. The softness of the silk and the design of the gown allowed for movement that picked up the ocean breeze perfectly.””

“Cara Marie from Invitation Station created charming invitations, menu’s, place cards and bonbonniere for the table setting. “The Key To Our Love Story” invitation set the mood of the wedding, being presented in a natural floral fabric envelope. The menu booklets were beautiful textured deep forest green with ivory and taupe accents. Place cards had delicate calligraphy names written on ivory card with a green stitching feature. These were hung with natural pegs on a rustic ladder set amongst the beach reeds to flutter in the sea breeze. Bonbonnieres of home-made raspberry jam incorporated the print and colours of the day.”

“Make-up artist Ann Lodberg created a very natural look using earthy tones and a neural palette. “It was a really hot day which can often play havoc with hair and makeup. I created really tight curls for Nicky’s hair as I knew that the heat would cause them to drop a lot quicker. By the time it came to the first shot they were exactly how I envisaged it. The shell head-piece was a last minute addition. It was actually a necklace of the photographers. We pinned it into the hair and it was a wonderful finishing touch to our boho bride look.”


 Normy of Divine Studios shot this gorgeous film of the shoot

Photographer: Milque Photography / Propos & Styling: Little Gray Station / Bride’s Dress: Darb Bridal Couture / Makeup Artist: Ann Lodberg / Invitations & Stationery: Invitation Station / Wedding Cake: Deliciously Decadent Cakes / Flowers: Imbue Weddings / Cinemtographer: Divine Studios / Groom’s Attire: Always Habit
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