Sandy and Ben
Oh Sydney you do do classic elegance so well – I love the timeless beauty of today’s wedding. Sandy and Ben, our newlyweds took advantage of their classic style and added in a few sentimental touches to pull together into a beautiful wedding day just right for their own personal style.
The couple were high school sweethearts. “We met at my year 10 formal when one of my girlfriends brought Ben as her date. We hit it off straight away and were inseparable all night. We became really close friends over the next few years and finally got together 4 long years later when I returned from a year traveling overseas.”
Nerida McMurray is the photographer of today’s wedding. Always so fresh and clean in her captures, Nerida has captured the classic details and feel of Sandy and Ben’s wedding in her own classic way.
Sandy wore a strapless gown from Karen Willis Holmes. She remarks “I absolutely loved my dress and the girls at KWH were amazing! They made the whole process so magical!” The floral arrangements were styled by Julie Pilcher Flowers. “The flowers were simply stunning and so fragrant. When they arrived the morning of the wedding, the whole house smelled absolutely amazing!”
Sandy’s wedding day hair was created by Julie Blazely (0404 096 842) with make-up by Petrina Milas. She recalls “Julie and Petrina who did our hair and makeup are geniuses! I had a rehearsal with them a few weeks before the wedding, which really put my mind at ease. They are such lovely girls and fit in perfectly with the atmosphere of the day!”
Sandy added a special touch to her gown ” Under the first layer of my dress, I pinned two handkerchiefs. One was my nana’s who was unwell at the time of my wedding so wasn’t able to come on the day. She has recently passed away. The other was Ben’s nana’s handkerchief who has passed away, but is still spoken about almost everyday by his family. Ben’s mum gave me this handkerchief as a gift – I would have loved to known Ben’s grandparents. I wanted our grandparents to be a special part of the day.” Her peeptoes were from Wittner.
One of Sandy’s favourite memories is having her bridesmaids beside her. “The girls and I spent the night before the wedding at my mum’s house. So exciting to wake up together and enjoy such a gorgeous morning. The photos of us girls before the church were taken in my mum’s garden – so beautiful!” The bridesmaids wore knee length gowns made by Emma Couture.
Sandy explains the decision behind the boy’s attire. “We didn’t want the boys to be too formal, so the boys all wore simple black suits. Ben wore a Hugo Boss suit – very handsome! We hired the groomsmen’s suits from Myer. We looked around at a few different suit hire companies, but the quality of the Myer suits far exceeded that of the others. The ties the boys wore were their groomsmen’s gift from Ben.”
Sandy says “We borrowed family friends’ cars to transport the bridal party to the church and then to the reception. Ben organised a gorgeous vintage car to take my Dad and I to the church, and then Ben and I from the church to the reception.”
Sandy and Ben married at Dalton Chapel at St Ignatius’ College, Riverview. Sandy explains “The Riverview Chapelis just beautiful. It is a particularly sentimental place for Ben, having been his school chapel.” Sandy walked down the aisle to a sentimental favourite “‘Hero to a Nation’ from the soundtrack to the movie ‘Phar Lap’. She says “Terrible name for a wedding song (we didn’t name the song in the wedding booklet) but it is the most gorgeous piece of music composed by Bruce Rowlands. ‘Phar Lap’ is probably of Ben’s favourite movies and I have always been taken by Rowlands’ amazing soundtrack.”
One of the funny moments of the day happened as the newlyweds exited the church. Sandy says “One of our favourite songs is ‘Happy to Be Stuck With You’ by Huey Lewis and the News. We had this on a CD to be used at some point during the day, but somehow as we were waiting for music to play for us to walk back down the aisle and out of the church, Huey starts blaring from the speakers! Never pictured Huey Lewis being played in the church!”
The flowergirls were dressed by Sandy’s mum. ” The flowergirl dresses are from my mum’s store, Ivy Emerald. The little girls (my two nieces and Ben’s two nieces) all looked so very beautiful and elegant. My nephew, Patrick, looked very handsome in his little vest.”
Sandy accessorized with tradition. “The bridesmaids’ earrings were by Jan Logan and were my gift to my girls to thank them for all their love and support. I wore my best friend’s ring as my ‘something blue’ and ‘something borrowed’. I wore my beautiful engagement ring on my right hand during the ceremony.”
Sandy and Ben held their reception at Royal Motor Yacht Club in Point Piper. Sandy remarks “The RMYC was a great reception venue. Ben and I both love food, so one of the main factors in choosing the RMYC was their reputation for their delicious menu. Plus, being on the water meant that our guests arrived to have canapés on the outside balcony. The staff were so helpful in organising the night – they didn’t bother us with the minor details.”
The cake was a special treat. Sandy explains “We really wanted to involve as many family and friends in the wedding as possible, so we asked Ben’s sister (who is a fabulous cook) to make our wedding cake. We had high expectations, but the cake was beyond any of our expectations! It was perfect!”
The couple made the favors themselves. Sandy recalls “We really wanted to make the day personal. Ben loves to cook, so Ben and his sister had a big cook up of jams and relishes which they then jarred. I spent a whole weekend covering the lid of each jar with a layer of silk tied with a ribbon so that they matched the theme of the room. In addition to being the bonbonierre, we decided to also make the jars the place cards for each table. We printed labels for each jar and rather than using our guests real names, we used our nicknames for them. e.g. I call Ben ‘Pieman’ and he calls me ‘Face’… 125 jars later, we had gorgeous little personalised jars for each guest to take home.”
The speeches were a highlight for the newlyweds. Sandy recalls “They were both hilarious and touching. Both of our Dad’s spoke, as did my two ‘head bridesmaids’, Heidi and Row (my little sister and my best friend), and Ben’s ‘head groomsmen’, Michael and Sam (his brothers). Ben and I also spoke.”
The band kept guests on the dance floor. “We loved our band, Two Fold. They are a father and son duo and just so much fun and such great guys! They really made the night – playing easy music during dinner, then lots of fun, cheesey songs for when everyone hit the dance floor.” The first song choice was a special one to Sandy and Ben, Sandy explains “We danced to Stay Gold by Stevie Wonder. Growing up, one of my favourite movies was the Outsiders. When Ben and I met, it turned out that it is also one of his favourites. All the music from the day was something that has meant something to Ben and I during our relationship.”
Congratulations Sandy and Ben! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us on Polka Dot Bride! Thank you also to Nerida McMurray for sharing today’s images!
Photos by Nerida McMurray