Erin and Manning’s Engagement Shoot

by | Bride, Engagements


Erin & Manning

Gerard of Hynesite Photography sent along this relaxed, beautiful engagement shoot that took place at the share house where the newly engaged couple Erin & Manning met! I love the idea of engagements at home, especially because I’m such a homebody!

This is the way the story goes “Manning and Erin met in April of 2011 when Manning replied to an online ad for a room to rent in a share house that Erin was currently living in. Manning almost didn’t make the cut for an interview, and when he was told he had secured a spot that afternoon, he almost didn’t make it – he’d been for a long bike ride up to Emerald, 60km away, and only just made it back in time.”

After a morning of interviews, Erin and her housemates made an easy decision, that Manning was the best candidate, and he moved in two weeks later.

Erin and Manning got along well, especially since they were often home together a lot.

After late nights together cooking, playing scrabble and discussing their own ideal European holidays (which they are going on together this June), Manning and Erin made the nerve-wracking and exciting decision to take their housemate relationship to the next level.

The couple feels very spoilt that in the early days of their dating, they got to spend every day together. It helped to accelerate their relationship, and create a strong bond that neither of them had ever felt before. Erin in particular always felt that if Manning could fall for her in her trackies and slippers around the house, then he truly was falling for whole deal. And it certainly didn’t detract from the special nights when they went out for dates – their first real date, Manning snuck out the back door, so he could pick Erin up out the front.”

“Since they started dating, Manning and Erin have moved in to an apartment by themselves where they continue their love of cooking, and spend time riding to cafes for brunches with family and friends.

The couple wanted to incorporate elements in the shoot that were important to them: the scrabble for the nights they spent getting to know one another; the bicycle to remind them how lucky they were that Manning even made it to the housemate interview on time; and the tulips, because for her birthday, Manning sent some to Erin at her work. That day, everyone told Erin what she already knew to be true: “He’s a keeper, don’t let him go”.

“The weekend after the shoot they moved into their own apartment!”

Photographer: Hynesite Photography
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Wedding Midnight Snacks

by | Bride, Catering, Reception


I think there is nothing better than being at a wedding, dancing your heart out and suddenly? Out come platters of delicious food that give you just a little more energy to dance until dawn.

Midnight snacks at a wedding are a brilliant way to keep your guests’ energy level up but it’s also a fun way to bring out your favourite food that you might not have considered serving during dinner (cheeseburgers? french fries? doughnuts?). Consider making the portions bite size so they’re easy to eat between songs!

Stuck for ideas? Let my stomach grumble as I ramble off my favourites – grilled cheese with shot glasses of tomato soup, mini burgers, shot glasses filled with french fries covered in tomato sauce, ice cream, tiny chocolate chip cookies with milk, doughnut holes,  mini hot dogs, Hot chocolate, curry with poppadums, pikelet stacks with fresh berries, party pies and cocktail frankfurters (you may laugh but these are always the first to go at any party, let’s be honest!), mini tacos, macaroni & cheese, baked potatoes, meatballs, sausage rolls.. the list goes on!

What would you serve?

1. Mini ice cream photo by  j. bird photography via Style Me Pretty 2. Mini pies from Martha Stewart Weddings 3. Mini grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup from Fresh Tart 4.  Photo from Bite by Bite: 100 Stylish Little Plates You Can Make for Any Party by Peter Callahan via Bridal Guide 5 Photo from Bite by Bite: 100 Stylish Little Plates You Can Make for Any Party by Peter Callahan via Bridal Guide 6. Mini pancake stack from Instyle Weddings 7. Mini grilled cheese & tomato soup from Oh Happy Day! 8. Photo from Bite by Bite: 100 Stylish Little Plates You Can Make for Any Party by Peter Callahan via Bridal Guide 9. Mini biscuits and milk from Martha Stewart Weddings 10. Mini doughnuts and coffee from Martha Stewart Weddings 11. Mini macaroni and cheese from Martha Stewart Weddings 12 Photo from Bite by Bite: 100 Stylish Little Plates You Can Make for Any Party by Peter Callahan via Bridal Guide 13. Mini cheeseburgers and fries from The Breakers

Friday Roundup

by | Blog News, Bride


Beautiful Queensland Garden Wedding

Looking good! Timothy prepares for his big day! Image by Karl Martin Photography via Beautiful Queensland Garden Wedding

Happy Friday! We have a new look Friday Roundup this week (thanks to Ms Gingham!) We have *so many* posts going up on our specialty blogs at the moment that we would hate for you to miss them!

This Week On Polka Dot Weddings

Polka Dot Weddings is the blog where real brides write about their weddings and share their experiences. Inspiration abounds so click on each image to read more.

Glimmer Gold Inspiration board  Tips for writing the perfect wedding speech  Rustic Country Wedding  Queensland Garden Wedding

Tasmanian Beach Wedding  Desperately Seeking

1.Glimmer Gold Inspiration board 2.Tips for writing the perfect wedding speech 3.Rustic Country Wedding 4.Queensland Garden Wedding 5.Tasmanian Beach Wedding 6.Help other Brides source hard to find items on Desperately Seeking

This Week On Polka Dot Wisdom

Polka Dot Wisdom is a treasure trove of advice, news and wedding planning tips! Written by wedding professionals you could almost plan your whole wedding by following this, the wisest of all blogs! Click on the images to read more.

Expert Interview  Vendor's Favourite - Silver Sixpence's favourite wedding things  How long should your photographer stay at your reception?

Dessert Table Workshop Invitation  11 Essential Questions To Ask When Comparing Photography Packages

1.Natasja Kremers from NK Photography talks about life, business and what’s next in this Expert Interview 2.Brisbane bridal designer Silver Sixpence’s favourite wedding things 3.How long should your photographer stay at your reception? 4.Dessert Table Workshop Invitation 5.Choosing the right photography package for you


This Week On Polka Dot Made

Polka Dot Made is your source for all things handmade including weekly DIY projects to make for your wedding or engagement.

Etsy Roundup  Tuesday Type - Designer Notes Pro  Milk bottles DIY tutorial  Ms Gingham's Orange Twist

1.On Etsy Roundup a selection of wedding garters 2.On Tuesday Type this font suitable for a rustic wedding 3.Faux milk glass DIY tutorial 4.Round up the week with a yummy cocktail


 This week on Polka Dot Honeymoons

The wedding is over, the dust has settled and now it’s time to get away from it all! Find resort reviews, inspiration and real honeymoons every week on Polka Dot Honeymoons.

Honeymoon In Vanuatu  Resort review of Gilpin Lakehouse 6 Things To Pack

1.Katie and Tim’s real honeymoon in Vanuatu 2.Resort review of Gilpin Lakehouse in the English countryside 3.What to pack for your honeymoon in England


This week on Polka Dot Groom

Polka Dot Groom is dedicated to all things groom. Inspiration, advice and style for the Australian groom.

Champagne Sabrage  Real Groom - Tobey  Inspired Memories - Tim

1.Pop your champagne in style… with a sword! 2.Real groom style inspiration 3.Tim shares memories of his wedding to Tara

It’s a quiet week around the week this week so we’re saving up our news for a huge Friday Roundup next week! Be sure to check out this week’s posts for more wedding goodness!

Olivia and Tim’s Relaxed Noosa Wedding

by | Australia - Queensland, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Olivia and Tim

What happens when a florist ties the knot? A bouquet full of limes and broccoli that’s what! Olivia and Tim had such a gorgeous wedding in Noosa that I know you’ll enjoy their beautiful day as much as I did!

Olivia recalls how she met Tim. “Tim and I met in high school. One outing with our mutual school friends, I was agreeing to ‘go out with’ one of Tim’s friends, not caring too much about it, and Tim ‘agreed’ to help me so he got my phone number and rang me every night since then. It’s funny looking at teenagers now and dismissing their relationships so easily, I knew at 14 I had met the person I wanted to be with forever!”

Alana Aston Photography captured today’s wedding- there is such a light and bright feel to these photos, they perfectly capture the relaxed, beachside feel of this Noosa wedding.

Olivia tells “We got married at Noosa Woods Park, Hastings St, Noosa, at the Sunshine Coast. For a small fee to the council and a little reminder phone call to mow the spot it was great. A little sunny but our ceremony was short. ”

Olivia recalls “Catherine from Richies Bakery in Noosa took care of our cake at the last minute. We saw her a few days before the wedding. (I was a slack Bride). Catherine made it just as we wanted. ” The couple cut their wedding cake after the ceremony.

Not only did Olivia’s mother walk her down the aisle, but she also sewed Olivia and her bridesmaid’s gowns! Olivia recalls “My mother made my dress, the trouble with having an amazing seamstress at your disposal is that you can have your pick of all the dresses in the universe! I found a picture of mine after perusing a million online.  I chose this one as it was perfect to have it transform into a reception dress. My mother is amazing and I had the utmost faith she would make it perfectly and she did!”

For the music, Olivia says, “Tim and I take care to make things that extra special and we decided that I would choose what I walked down the aisle to and he would choose our first dance song. I chose Jeff Buckley’s ‘Hallelujah’ for the flower girls, bridesmaids and my mother to walk to and Colby Collait and Jason Maraz’s song ‘Lucky’. Tim walked up the aisle to meet me and we walked to the music together.”

The couple were very sure to plan the wedding together. Olivia recalls “Tim and I planned most of it. At one point when I was making decisions he said to me in fun, ‘Honey, stop stifling my fairytale wedding.’ He was very involved which made it all the more special. My cousins and Tim’s sister and of course my mum were a huge help too.The local Community Centre manager at Leichhardt here in Ipswich, Phil, took care of the official proceedings for our marriage. He was fun and has a great aura.”

Olivia, a florist at Olive Blooms created a bouquet of not just flowers, but vegetables and fruit too! “It was important for me to do something different, hence the limes and broccoli, this was because I ended up being restricted in my colour choices because of my bridesmaids’ material, but I would not have it any other way. We also featured the flowers at the reception by each table being a flower instead of a number. So if you were at the roses table your centrepiece was all roses, we had 8 different varieties for 8 different types.”

The bridesmaids wore floor length gowns made by Olivia’s mother. Olivia remarks “I only knew I wanted a print, I left it up to girls to decide on the rest and my mother made these gowns from material that I picked and purchased on a random outing one day. I fell in love with the richness of the colours, turquoise, gold, cream, grey, it was gorgeous and it turned out so well.” For their hair and makeup, Olivia recalls “My hairdresser was Amanda  (0404 790 439) and she cuts and colours my hair for me and offered to come up. I also helped her out with her wedding flowers so she was an easy pick. Her phone number is 0404 790 439, she is based in Ipswich but also travels. She did an amazing job, it was perfect! My make-up artist was Tyneale. She also did the girls and mums and Tim’s sister. She is based in Ipswich, but travels for a small fee. I loved my makeup and it lasted all day and night through sweat and tears… lots of tears haha.”

Olivia added something extra special to her wedding day look. “I wore the turquoise necklace that Tim had purchased for me from Mexico when we were in high-school. He was always dirty that I hadn’t worn it to our formal, so I think I’ve redeemed myself now. It was special and fitted our theme beautifully.”

Of their photographer, Olivia says “As soon as I saw her work I was in love, one of her photographs was more spectacular than a thousand of a lot of other photographers out there. And it came true for us, only better, because we love them all! Along with this, she took the stress out of ensuring that we were getting certain poses etc because we had faith that Alana was an artist, most of our favourites are ones that we didn’t even know she was taking a shot! ”

The reception was held at River Deck Restaurant. Olivia explains “We chose the Riverdeck because it is where Tim proposed to me, as well as wanting to have our wedding at the Sunshine coast so we could holiday with family from overseas the week prior. Tim  agreed with a coastal wedding on one condition, no one had to touch sand… which is why we chose the park, we had our guests sail the Noosa river while we took photographs after the ceremony. They had cake, drank and watched the sunset before being dropped back to the park or ferried to the reception venue.”

The first dance was a surprise, Olivia explains “I had a few ideas but he really surprised me with picking ‘Falling Slowly’ from the movie Once. We both loved the music from the film and he had me in tears as soon as it started to play. ”

Congratulations Olivia and Tim! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us! Thanks to Alana Aston Photography for sharing today’s images!

Photographer: Alana Aston Photography / Makeup Artist: Tyneale Makeup Artist / Hairstylist: Amanda 0404 790 439 / Bride's Dress: Bride's Mother / Bridesmaid Dresses: Bride's Mother / Flowers & Decor: Olive Blooms / Ceremony Venue: Noosa Woods Park / Reception Venue: River Deck Restaurant / Wedding Cake: Richies Bakery