Back to Top
PolkaDotBride - Australia's number 1 Bridal Blog, Wedding Directory and Advice for Brides
Log In Register

Friday Roundup

by | Blog News, Bride


Photo by  Tamiz Photography from Why We’re Having A Destination Wedding

It has been a fantastic first week we’ve had! So much wedding goodness and so much promise for the year ahead! We moved to a brand spanking new server over the holiday break and it seems to have had a bit of an effect on our forms so if you have sent us an advertising query through our advertising form or used our contact form and have not recieved a response, please try again! (On that note, a big congratulations and best wishes to our lovely web manager who is tying the knot this weekend!)

Around the blogs this week –

Helene of Blond Flores takes us on a trip to the flower markets on Polka Dot Wisdom

Robyn Pattison shares her happy thoughts on being a marriage celebrant on Polka Dot Wisdom

I share my  paper pom pom tutorial on Polka Dot Made

Some great reasons to have a destination wedding on Polka Dot Weddings – count me in….

April and David share their fun engagement shoot on Polka Dot Weddings

Calli shares her love of New York through some wonderful images on Polka Dot Honeymoons

Around the wedding world this week..

We’ve updated our event calendar again! Have you got an event we’re missing? Let us know!

You could be attending fun events like the Moda Wedding Expo and drinking bubbles while pouring over the goodies from wedding suppliers! The Mod Wedding Expo is on the 25th of January from 7.00pm for lovely Brisbane couples to be!

Wanting a Bali honeymoon? Conrad Bali Resort are celebrating their 8th anniversary this year and are holding a number of events to celebrate- including the “Beyond Infinity Wedding Contest” The contest runs until march 2012 and gives couples a chance to win  the grand prize consisting of four nights at the Conrad Suites, a couple’s spa treatment, romantic dinner, two-hour professional photo shoot with choice of bridal gown and suit, amongst other inclusions!

Entry is via a collage submission and all the information can be found on the Conrad Bali Facebook Page.

The Melbourne Bridal and Honeymoon Expo is this weekend and the lovely Gillian of Grassroots Productions has let me know she will be presenting a workshop on “Creative Eco Weddings”. Check out times and buy your tickets here.

Sydney wedding photographers Milk & Honey Photography are offering a wedding package summer sale for bookings made in January or February (for the 2012 year). For any couple who books a “Chocolate Package” Milk & Honey photography are offering at no extra charge:

A ‘playdates’ or pre-wedding session including digital files from the session (value $850)
2 extra hours OR 6 extra sides in the album (value $700-$900)

Visit their website to book.

I am always SO excited to hear from the winners of competitions and it’s with great delight this week that I read the winner of The Sydney Wedding Registry “Win A Dress Competition” that we posted about last year found out about the competition through Polka Dot Bride (hooray I love when Polka Dot Bride readers win such great prizes!) A big congratulations to Maggie M, I cannot wait to see your wedding photos and the gown you have chosen.

To celebrate their first year in business, wedding stationers Daisy & Jack have launched their brand new website along with a brand new look! I love it and know you will too! Check it out here.

Wedding Gifts Direct have kicked off their year with a special January special offer! Sign up with Wedding Gifts Direct during the month of January and receive a FREE* Noritake Silk Road 42 Piece Cutlery Set valued at $795, OR a Noritake Baroque White 45 Piece Composition Set valued at $550, OR a Noritake Carnivale Mugs Mixed Colours, Set of 6 valued at $169! Visit their website for more information!

Hayman Island have a special treat in store for couples! Couples announcing their engagement on Hayman in February 2012 will receive an invitation to enjoy a complimentary wedding on the gorgeous Great Barrier Reef island.

Couples will be invited to return to this island paradise for their nuptials, complete with wedding celebrant, a stunning ceremony location and set-up and the assistance of a professional Hayman wedding planner. They’ve even put together “The Ultimate Hayman Proposal”. A package complete with four nights in a beach villa, Perle Degustation menu on Valentine’s Day, spa treatments and helicopter arrival and departure and a special sparkly treat, making it a romantic holiday just right for February. Visit the website to make your reservation!

Baccini & Hill are moving from their Armadale store to the the heart of Melbourne city at 271 Collins St! To celebrate, they’re holding a moving sale with up to 80% off store wide this weekend (21st-22nd January). Bridal wear samples start from $150 and bridesmaids gowns from $50. Visit the website for more details.

Melbourne florist Muesli and Yoghurt have kicked off their 2012 with a brand new website. Check it out here.


To celebrate her engagement (okay probably not – but the certain designer DID get engaged yesterday and it does make it perfect for our Friday Roundup) Alannah Hill is having final markdowns on her items! Running until  Sunday January 22nd, 2012 – Alannah will be offering 20% off ALL items, with an additional 20% of ALL sale items! There are as usual fabulous shoes, dresses and accessories which make gorgeous bridal or bridesmaid accessories! (now if someone could just buy me those shoes…)


Woodnote Photography, straight from the US to Australia will be in Melbourne from Feb. 1-11th  and will be available for photo shoots and consultations for upcoming weddings. The couple only moved from Melbourne to the US where Jayden’s family lives four years ago, and hope to live here again permanently soon! Visit their website to contact them.

Phew! With such a bonanza of a Friday Roundup and such a busy first week back, I wanted to end off our week with one of my favourite wedding movies of all time.

The beautiful Kathryn of Snippet & Ink recently celebrated her first wedding anniversary and has the most beautiful movie of her day by Sandbox Love. It’s one worth watching- not only for the classic beauty, but also for just how inspiring and rich Kathryn and Ryan’s love is. Have a wonderful weekend Polka Dotties!


Visit Ms Polka Dot's Directory

Suong and Robert’s Modern Stokehouse Wedding

by | Australia - Victoria, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Suong and Robert

It’s not Summer in Melbourne without a visit to the Stokehouse or at least a walk along the beach in front of it. So today’s wedding of Suong and Robert and the popular St Kilda venue is such a nice one to showcase at the height of Summer.

Suong recalls how she and Robert met. “We met during University and were best friends for three years before we decided to travel around the world together for three months. I realised I had deeper feelings for Rob after he bought me an ice cream in Madrid to compensate for a terrible meal.”

Photos today are by Brent Lukey who has captured the wedding with such warmth. Clean classic shots that show the beauty, love and happiness of the day.

Suong wore a gown by Karen Willis Holmes and paired it with Mimco shoes and jewels from Christine Barro. Her one bridesmaid wore a Zimmermann gown while Robert wore a suit from Hugo Boss. Evelyn of Rouge Artists styled the girls hair & makeup.

Flower Temple styled the beautiful floral arrangements.

Suong and Robert met before the ceremony and had photographs with their bridal party in some of Melbourne’s famous laneways. Of their photographer, Suong says “Brent Lukey was the first and only photographer we met. From the beginning, it was very clear that this was someone who understood our requirements and spoke our language.  Apart from being a wonderful photographer, Brent is also an absolute pleasure to work with- he was professional, efficient and interacted very well with all our guests. There is a beautiful sense of clarity, timelessness and humour, which is so evident in his photos. ”

Suong and Robert were married at Stokehouse Melbourne. Suong explains “We held our ceremony at sunset on the deck of the Stokehouse which overlooks St Kilda beach and onto Port Philip Bay.  This allowed us to flow seamlessly onto canapés and then the reception at the same venue. The restaurant manager Joel and his kitchen and waiting staff were incredibly gracious.”

Suong walked down the aisle to “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison played by The Baker Boys who also performed during the reception.

Celebrant Janet Hussey married the couple.

A three tier wedding cake was created by Cake Face.

Suong and Robert put plenty of personal touches into the reception. Suong explains “We created the table signs on each table, which was named after a special city/country and a short description of what that place meant to us as people. “

“We also designed and printed the “Penguin book cover,” which were our post cards for guests to fill out in lieu of a guestbook and they were able to place these in a metal mail box. We also designed the “tram scroll,” canvas which was our seating chart.”

Guests received boxes of beautiful chocolates from Cacao as a wedding favor with tags handmade by Suong and Robert.


For their first dance, Suong and Robert chose “Praise You” by Fat Boy Slim. Suong recalls “We recreated the dance from the Spike Jonze video clip featuring the fictional dance group the Torrance Community dance group.  We finished with, “I want to grow old with you,” by Adam Sandler from the movie, “The Wedding Singer.”

Congratulations Suong and Robert! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us! Thank you also to  Brent Lukey for sharing today’s photographs with us!

Photographer: Brent Lukey / Bride’s Dress: Karen Willis Holmes / Bride’s Shoes: Mimco / Bride’s Jewellery: Christine Barro / Groom’s Attire: Hugo Boss / Bridesmaid Dresses: Zimmerman / Makeup Artist: Evelyn, Rouge Artists / Hairstylist: Evelyn, Rouge Artists / Flowers & Decor: Flower Temple / Ceremony Officiant: Janet Hussey / Band: The Baker Boys / Favors: Cacao / Cake Baker: Cake Face / Venue: Stokehouse Melbourne

Nina and Zharn’s Heartfelt Sydney Wedding

by | Australia - New South Wales, Bride,


Nina and Zharn

I never tire of the iconic location  of Sydney Harbour. Today’s couple married right between the two icons of Sydney – the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House. A simply sweet day peppered with flavours of their culture and of course plenty of love.

Nina tells the story of her and Zharn’s relationship. “We met in December 2007 at “A Day On The Green” Concert for Lionel Richie down at Centennial Vineyards, Bowral.

Two girlfriends and I had booked our tickets months in advance because we were so excited to see Lionel sing (being from the UK, he is huge with our age group)… Zharn however had been at a wedding the night before in Berrima and had no intentions of going to see Lionel Richie… Truth be known he had no idea the concert was happening and even if he did, he couldn’t have cared less. Zharn you see, is actually in to Heavy Metal bands, some of them pretty hardcore like Slayer and Kyuss… both bands that I have never heard of before meeting him… so love ballads were probably far from what Zharn would usually choose to see BUT when he heard a couple of his friends from the wedding were going to see Lionel he decided to tag along and continue the party. All very impromptu!

So as it happens we were sitting near each other on the grass… and when Lionel came on stage and started his show, Zharn spent most of the first songs videoing his friends on his mobile phone!!! I just couldn’t bare to watch him ignoring Lionel so I made him dance (little did I know that he didn’t like to dance especially when it isn’t heavy metal or rock!)… anyhow, he danced and then when I left him alone, he’d get back to taking pics with the phone.

Being a little tiddly I insisted that he put the phone away and enjoy the music – Lionel was amazing! So, we got talking and dancing and then that was pretty much that at the end of the night. Well it was until my friend who was sober and driving saw him walking out of the hectic car park in the vineyard all by himself… we thought his name was “John” so in our best British accents we called out “John” to him and lo and behold he answered… we invited him to come with us to find some food. We just made it to Chinese take-out before it shut up for the evening in a nearby town…. and during this time before dropping him back, we had a sneaky kiss, exchanged phone numbers and then dropped him off.

After dropping him off, we noticed that he had left his jacket in our car…. and being girls we all thought that this may have been a deliberate ploy to have an excuse to see me again! Well it worked, he did call and we did catch up again and the rest is history! Funny thing is that now that I know Zharn and was corrected on the John misunderstanding on our first date (!), I quickly realised that he is possibly “THE-most-forgetful” person I know. He leaves his stuff everywhere so leaving the jacket in our car was definitely not premeditated…. although it may have been a little helpful hand from cupid. He insists that regardless of forgetting one of his favourite jackets, he definitely would have called!!! 🙂 we’ll never know and I suppose it really doesn’t matter anymore.

So that is how we met. He actually quite likes Lionel Richie now and Lionel played a big part in our wedding songs… we are actually went back to Bowral to see him on 27th March 2011 for another day on the green event with the same two girlfriends as when we met, just for old time sake. I also attended my first heavy metal festival at Soundwave in Brisbane… whilst it didn’t rock my world, it’s meant to be all about give and take and sharing right?!”

Photos today are by Matthew Mead. I love the warmth and relaxed beauty Matthew has captured in today’s wedding!

Nina wore a gown with accessories by Jean Fox. She paired her look with shoes from Suna.

Nina’s bridesmaids wore blue gowns from Bridesmaids Only.

The couple held their ceremony overlooking the harbour. Nina says “Our ceremony was held at iconic Campbell’s Cove, the boardwalk in front of the Restaurant strip, The Rocks waterfront. We enjoyed looking out on the water with the Harbour Bridge to the side and facing the Opera House.” Nina walked down the aisle to ‘Annie’s Song’ by Jesse Younan.

Zharn and his groomsmen wore suits from Roger David. Nina recalls “Roger David were the friendliest, most accommodating store. We had to buy suits from measurements for our groomsmen who were not located near us. Roger David organised for the suits to be delivered to the groomsmen for us. Just fantastic and friendly people.”

The couple chose a simple theme that matched their surroundings. Nina says “Our wedding theme was nautical. We decided to keep this very simple however.The bridesmaids wore sapphire blue dresses and co-ordinated groomsmen ties, blue wedding cake ribbon, blue chair covers resonated the simple nautical theme. The location was obviously nautical, with various nautical themes inside the venue and outside (like the ship hanging off the front of the venue). We were lucky enough to have a tall ship sail in right at the end of the ceremony as well.”

Nina remarks “We only had 40 guests, so each person was very special to both of us.”

Mother Nature came up with a special plan to make the day extra magical. Nina remarks “We had not realised, but on the morning of Friday, 13th May 2011 – four planets aligned… something that hasn’t happened for a hundred years.  There had been cold and wet weather all week, but I think the planets helped bring out the best winter sunshine for the day and took the chill out of the air for us. This set the location off perfectly.”

Of their photographer, Nina says “I rated our photographer, Matt Mead, as the best supplier of my whole wedding.  Matt was generous with his time, providing a pre-wedding photo shoot as part of his package so that we get to know each other and so that we also got used to the camera. He was available by phone and email any time.

On the day, he was the most calming influence. Capturing precious moments, despite the chaos. One of my favourite shots is of Matt doing up the Groom’s tie as the Groom and his groomsmen had no idea!!! I thought this was very cute.

Matt has great ideas and really listened to what sort of photos we wanted, the important shots and then used his creativity to deliver what can only be described as breathtaking photos which we both feel truly capture the essence of the day.  From the emotion of the ceremony, to fun& iconic pics with the bridal party, staying on till the bitter end to get heartfelt emotional photos from the speeches as well as hilarious shots from the fun on the dancefloor. Every guest is represented.”

Nina and Zharn celebrated with guests at Trawler & Heritage Rooms, Wolfies Restaurant, The Rocks (Dockside Group). Nina explains “We booked a Winter Package deal which made the reception one of the most affordable parts of the day without compromising quality or ambience. The wedding team at Dockside were very accommodating to our needs, including a back-up, indoor wet weather option (which thankfully we didn’t need), ceremony set up of chairs and champagne after for free.”

The stationery was designed by Paper Candy. Nina sealed each invitation envelope with a red wax stamp featuring an anchor.

The speeches were a brilliant highlight, Nina explains. “One of the most memorable and special moments was the father of the groom speech which was undertaken by the groom’s grandfather. Instead of  a speech, Pa had spent months re-writing the lyrics to Frank Sinatra’s – I did it my way… he changed each verse especially for us with the chorus – “you’ll do it your way”. He didn’t read it BUT sang it…. Providing copies for guests so that everyone could join in and sing to us….. absolutely magical. I don’t think there was one person, male or female that didn’t have a tear in their eye at this gesture. He then presented us with a framed copy of the song as a keepsake! Ingenious, personal and special and totally in-keeping with the intimacy of the whole day.

For their first dance, Nina and Zharn chose ‘Kiss Kiss’ – Tarkan. Nina explains “Our first dance was something that we had overlooked in the hectic-ness leading up to the big day, so we chose a song that we could improvise to and have a bit of fun with. It was a Turkish song which incorporates a bit of my Persian heritage.”

Nina says “Our wedding was heartfelt (vows), intimate (in number) and iconic (in setting), eclectic (in music) but fun for all.”

Congratulations Nina and Zharn! Thank you for sharing your wedding with us ion Polka Dot Bride! Thank you also to Matthew Mead. for sharing today’s photographs with us!

Photographer: Matthew Mead / Bride’s Dress: Jean Fox / Bride’s Shoes: Suna / Flowers: Best Buds / Venue: Trawler & Heritage Rooms, Wolfies, The Rocks / Music: Maestro Ent / Groom's and Groomsmen's Attire: Roger David / Bridesmaid Dresses: Bridesmaids Only / Invitations & Stationery: Paper Candy / Wedding Cake: Sparkle Cupcakery / Bride’s Jewellery: Jean Fox

PULLED – Marina and Andy’s Vintage Melbourne Wedding

by | Bride, Inspired Weddings,



Marina and Andy

A wedding of vintage splendor for you today- vintage fur coats, tea length dresses, sweet hats and bouquets made of brooches. A sparkly, splendid Melbourne affair!

Marina recalls how she met Andy. “We met snowboarding in Japan, Andrew (groom) made a lovely speech likening his bride to the snow – every time you think you know it all you rediscover it anew with each snowfall, a new, beautiful layer on top of the last, each one stunning you with complexity and variety. It brought us all to tears.”

Photos today are by Bayley and Moore who not only captured the vintage beauty of the day but also turned it into a stop motion video! I’m going to save that one for the end!

Candice DeVille styled the girl’s hair & makeup.

Marina and Andy used the Morris Minor Club of Victoria for transport.

Marina and Andy had a first look before the ceremony and were able to enjoy each other’s company .

Marina wore a gown made by Kristy Coakley at House of Snowball. Marina says “I made the brooch bouquets from brooches collected by the groom’s parents at UK flea markets. They inspired the colours for the vintage hats. The grooms boutonnière’s were also handmade.”

Of their photographer, Marina says “Sophia and Simon work seamlessly as an incredible team. Sophia is a great planner and attends to the details; she has a fantastic eye for style and beauty and creates really memorable pictures. Simon is outgoing and funny and makes people feel at ease bringing out their best. They are a breeze to work with prior to and on the day (see their PDF attached in the email, it’s all true!). Their work could best be described as storytelling. They do this through stills and stop motion movies, which is what they do better than anyone in the world in my opinion.”

Marina’s bridesmaids wore gowns bought on Etsy and at Lost and Found vintage clothing store in Fitzroy then altered in length and for fit by Victoria Ingram a friend and costume designer.

Marina and Andy wed at The Russian Cultural House in Fitzroy, Marina says “The Russian House was a perfect ceremony venue. Alex Abramoff was super lovely and really excited about having such a special event in his room. We were allowed to decorate it ourselves with whatever we wanted. Our friends and family helped with this. Here is what we wrote in our ceremony program “Andrew and Marina like the notions expressed in Alain de Botton’s Architecture of Happiness – that WHERE we are and the spaces we create for ourselves heavily influence who we can be, our aspirations and our happiness.

Fitzroy for Andrew and Marina represents a change in trajectory for both their lives. It was here that they spent their first week getting to know each other during the Easter break of 2008 and later when Andrew made trips down to Melbourne. It was here that Marina lived with Andrew’s cousin Ed for 2 years getting to know Andrew’s family and childhood stories.

Fitzroy with its rich history, colonial bluestone and old oak trees is also home to a bohemian, free-spirited, creative  and very multi-cultural community.  A community that is fostered by high density living, parks and easy access to public transport. These elements are what Marina and Andrew love about their soon to be new home, New York city. Over its 120 years of existence,Fitzroy has driven social change in Melbourne due to the pressures of housing ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots’. For Andrew and Marina it represents open mindedness and accepting of difference. Qualities which lead to dynamic, exciting and harmonious relationships. It also represents forced adaptation and new beginnings.

The Russian House was built in 1884, and is a fine example of Victorian Boom-era architecture with its arched windows and classical features.  It formerly housed The Collingwood and Fitzroy United Friendly Society Dispensary, which provided heath care and medicines. In 1968 it was occupied by Russian community groups. The Russian House came to mind when Andrew and Marina were looking for a place to get married because Marina had spent many a time sitting on its steps, which get the winter sun, to eat lunch and listen to piano recitals – “a lovely thinking space”.”

Marina describes the wedding as “A heartfelt and nostalgic vintage and handmade Melbourne wedding amongst close family and friends with oodles of love, elegance and frivolity.

Marina walked down the aisle to “Lakme Flower Duet”. She recalls “It was sung by Hannah Pelva-Caven and Belinda Dalton, who are friends from Melbourne Uni.”

Nicole DeBono of Cookes Food planned the day and Cookes Food also catered the wedding.

The wedding cake was made by Marina’s mother and grandmother. Marina put her own handmade touch on the reception “I made the table cloths from natural calico and the napkins which were rolled up with handmade napkin rings with a button. I became very intimate with my sewing machine!Having to sew 120!”

Marina and Andy held their reception at Fitzroy Town Hall. Marina recalls “The Fitzroy Town Hall was chosen based on it’s central city location as we wanted to keep transport to a minimum. It was big enough for a sit down dinner and dancing. An attractive blank canvas to style with our vintage furniture, DIY details and flowers. The staff were easy to work with and the costs were reasonable. It’s also a grand and nostalgic building on a village-like inner city suburb street, which is bike friendly and lacking in traffic. The steps made a perfect place to do family and group photos. The venue was hip, fun and vintage”

The flowers were styled by Mr Lincoln.

When asked what made the day special, Marina recalls “My brother singing, Andrew’s speech, friend’s and family helping out with decoration of the ceremony venue, brooch bouquets, OUR PHOTOGRAPHERS! They were amazing and have created such special memories for us and were so easy to work with in the lead up. A home-made photobooth. ”

The first dance was gorgeous to watch.  Marina explains “We learnt a foxtrot combined with swing dance to Fly Me To The Moon by Frank Sinatra. It was great for showing off my dress. I loved our dance for the practice it required, it was a really special activity we could do together as a couple prior to the wedding and I learnt a lot about following the lead of my now husband in dance and in life.Good for all modern brides as wedding planning and the day can sometimes be a little too much about the bride. It’s the groom’s day too!”

The last treat.. Bayley & Moore put together this fun stop motion video of the day!

Congratulations Marina and Andy! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us! Thank you also to Bayley & Moore for sharing the images and stop motion video today!

Photographer: Bayly & Moore / Bride’s Dress: Kisty Coakley at House of Snowball / Flowers & Decor: Mr Lincoln / Ceremony Venue: Russian Cultural House / Wedding Planner: Nicole deBono at Cookes Food / Reception Venue: Fitzroy Town Hall / Catering: Cookes Food / Hair & Makeup Stylist: Candice DeVille
Back to Top