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Friday Roundup

by | Blog News, Bride



Photo by Belinda Fettke from Amy and Michael’s story “When Two Paths Merge As One”

Well since we went into holiday mode a little last week, this week’s Friday roundup is extra full of tidbits from around the Polka Dot blogs and the wedding world!

A wonderful warm welcome to our first ever groom blogger Julian over on Polka Dot Groom! Head on over and help him feel welcome as he blogs about his wedding planning journey!

Also on Polka Dot Groom, funky groom shoes!

Need blog resources? Check out the ultimate directory with new site Bloggers Domain profiled on Polka Dot Wisdom

Insider advice fro selecting your venue from CL Weddings & Events

Lucy Leonardi shares her words of wisdom on choosing the right photographer for you

The start of our Blog Basics series. First up, giving image credit!

Sweet beaded napkin rings by DIY Queen Alicia on Polka Dot Made

Making a fantastic floral invitation with Cristina Re, also on Polka Dot Made

Kiwi Mel kicks off her wedding story with the proposal on Polka Dot Weddings

Katie wrote about meeting the love of her live, also on Polka Dot Weddings

Amy and Michael’s story, plus their fun engagement photos are worth checking out!

Joanie and Tim and their elegant Brisbane wedding

Finally on Polka Dot Weddings, Lyndall shares her wedding day story in three parts! (See part one, part two and part three!)

and Kiwi Mel shares the second of her wedding entries with the most amazing headpiece she chose for her wedding day!

Don’t forget if you have entered our Infinity Photography Giveaway and have not received email confirmation of your entry, you’ll need to resend it to and wait for a confirmation!If you haven’t entered yet, check out the competition here– you could win part of the Infinity Photography $9500 prize pool!

Don’t forget also to enter to win one of two Paloma’s Nest prize packs in our competition here!

Sharnel Dollar has released a new, more affordable drink dispenser for your purchase! She has even more styles coming in July but for all the brides asking where to find them, here’s your chance! Check our Sharnel’s online store for more information.


White Tulip Photography has had a makeover, Mandy Bowler has taken her branding and added a fresh look- in Spring like greens and yellows, it’s worth a look (if only to pour over Mandy’s beautiful candid imagery!) . Visit the new look website here.

Are you a UK bride who has been dreaming of Johanna Johnson’s glamorous bridal gowns? Dream no more- Luella’s Boudoir in Wimbledon, London has just become a stockist of Johanna Johnson gown. Visit the website to make an appointment to view Johanna’s capsule collection.
If you’re not in the UK and want to peruse Johanna Johnson’s accessories online, the online store has a special discount through April gives every purchase a free hand-crafted Astor cuff in celebration of the royal wedding! Visit the online store for more details.

As per our last Friday roundup, the Cristina Re giveaway closes tomorrow! So don’t forget to head over to their blog and enter to win one of ten prize packs!

Karen Willis Holmes has launched her new e boutique! Her online store is filled with everything from Karen’s bridal gowns, bridesmaids gowns, hair flowers, earrings, jewels, even veils and petticoats! Visit the online store for more information.

Visit Ms Polka Dot's Directory

Stella and James’ Vintage Sydney Wedding

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


Stella and James

Sometimes a wedding just comes along that has a lot of “Oh that looks fun I wish I was there” or ” Oh I bet that bouquet smelled amazing” or even “oh gosh I want to dance with those people, they look fun!” which for me really is almost every wedding, but today’s has a relaxed, funky vibe to it that I know you will love and that sense of just being swept up in the party? Well I know you’ll love that too!

Today’s photographs are by Matt Reed who captures such beautiful candid moments- stolen kisses, romantic dancing, guests laughing. Every time a wedding from Matt lands in my inbox I know I’ll be transported back to that day- and I love it.

Stella and James were married at The Gap Bluff Centre, Watsons Bay. Stella says “We did it all at one venue so the guests didn’t have to move from place to place and this worked really well for us, it was one big celebration”.

Stella walked down the aisle to “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” by Procol Harum.

Stella wore shoes from Midas while groom James wore white thongs. Vivian Reed officiated the ceremony. “James and I wrote our own vows and it was really nice to be able to share those thoughts and commitments with all our friends and family.”

To start off the vintage feel of the wedding, Stella wore a vintage  silk chiffon gown from The Vintage Clothes Store, Pitt St, Sydney. Her bridesmaids wore Zimmermann silk gowns. Stella and her bridesmaids had their makeup styled by Kate Limbrick.

One of Stella’s happiest memories is that her godfather was able to attend her wedding as the final celebration of his life.

Stella wore a floral wreath in her hair which was created, along with the bouquets and other floral arrangements by Alex at Maggie May Flowers. Stella says  “She used all white flowers with dark green foliage in mismatched crystal vases.”

Stella and James had vintage furniture (purchased from second hand auctions to help create the vintage feel the couple wanted) placed on the lawns and verandah for guests to enjoy. Stella recalls “Cat Raven did all the styling and her husband Brad ran the day”. The couple chose a  croquembouche from The Croquembouche Queen for their wedding cake.

Music kept guests entertained with Stella and James hiring Dax Golding on vocals with his band. D.j ettienne played later on in the evening.

A cake fight was just one highlight of the reception. Stella agrees “We had an awesome cake fight!”

Of their first dance, Stella says “It was embarrassing and really funny!”

Congratulations Stella and James! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us on Polka Dot Bride! Thank you also to Matt of Matt Reed Photography for sharing today’s photographs with us.

Photography by Matt Reed Photography

The Royal Wedding: The Facts & Polka Dot Predictions

by | Bride, Celebrity Weddings


Kate and Prince William Photo from NY Daily News

There is nothing that quite excites me like a wedding (stating the obvious, but it’s true!) So this week is getting me particularly excited! While the buzz is so loud I can barely think, we’re midweek in our nod to the royal wedding !

The Facts


– Kate and Prince William will marry at Westminster Abbey where the coverage will begin at 10am UK time (8pm Australian) on the 29th of April 2011.

– 1900 guests will be seated inside the Abbey

– Westminster Abbey’s 500 bells will start ringing half an hour before the ceremony is to begin. After the ceremony, for what will be three hours, the full peal of 5,000 changes will be rung.

– Prince William will arrive at the Abbey (in a Bentley with Prince Harry) 40 minutes before Kate’s arrival (at 10.15am) and will be waiting in a closed off church for his bride’s arrival.

– Kate’s sister Pippa, will act as her maid of honour while Prince Harry will join William at the alter as one of his groomsmen.

– Kate is set to arrive at the church by Rolls Royce Phantom VI with her father just before 11am when the marriage service will begin.

– The aisle of Westminster Abbey will be covered in red carpet. The grave of the Unknown Warrior in the Nave. Kate and her father will walk around this area.

– Kate Middleton’s family and the couple’s friends will be seated in the Northern Lantern of the Abbey while the royal family with be seated in the Southern Lantern.

– The ceremony will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.

– Music during the service will be provided by The Choir of Westminster Abbey, The Chapel Royal Choir,  The London Chamber Orchestra, The Fanfare Team from the Central Band of the Royal Air Force and The State Trumpeters of The Household Cavalry.

– Following the ceremony, Prince William and Kate will ride in a royal carriage (built in 1902) through the streets to Buckingham Palace.

– At 1.25pm the newlyweds and royal family will appear on the balcony.

The Reception

– At Buckingham Palace, . Queen Elizabeth II will hold a lunchtime  reception for the couple and 650 official guests. Afterward Prince Charles, will host a private dinner and dancing for 300 close friends and family. Kate Middleton’s family will hold a party at the Goring Hotel for those not invited to the official afternoon buffet and will return to the palace for the evening celebrations.

– The wedding cake (traditional fruit) will be made by Fiona Cairns and will be multi tiered and iced with traditional British foliage. Kate and William have also ordered a chocolate biscuit cake from McVitie’s Cake Company. The wedding cake will feature Prince William and Kate’s cipher which will be formally released on the wedding day.

The Details

– The wedding invitations (sent out in February) were printed by Barnard and Westwood. The invitations were die stamped in gold on cream card stock.

– Kate will be getting ready with her family at the Goring Hotel in London.

– Hugo Burnand will be the official wedding photographer.

– Shane Connolly, a London floral designer will be creating the floral displays for the wedding.

– William will wear a suit made from Australian merino wool.

– Kate’s wedding band will be made from Welsh gold owned by the royal family. The gold was given to Prince William shortly after the couple announced their engagement,. Prince William will not wear a wedding ring.

– In lieu of gifts, the couple has asked for donations to charity as their wedding presents.

The rumors

– Kate is rumoured to have three gowns in case one leaks to the press.

– Kate is rumoured to be ditching the diamond tiara and instead wearing fresh flowers in her hair although hat maker Phillip Treacy has been said to have been commissioned to make hats for many of Kate’s family – including the bride.

– Kate’s hairstyle is said to be “down and flowy”.

= Kate is rumoured to drop the “obey” from her otherwise traditional wedding vows.

– Prince Harry is said to be hosting a recovery brunch the day after the wedding

– It is rumoured the newlyweds may have an Australian honeymoon (but also rumoured that the couple will head to Jordan!).

With all the tradition, Kate and William are sure to put their own stamp on the day – which really is what I love about any wedding! What do you hope will happen?

Our team predicts:

Ms Polka Dot: I don’t remember much of Princess Diana and Charles’s wedding, the modern fairytale of Princess Mary and Frederick in Denmark is the one I remember staying up for and actually being aware enough of what was happening to soak it in. I predict that Kate and Prince William’s wedding will be more influential than anyone has predicted- in little ways too- the details, the order of the ceremony, the words chosen.

I predict Kate and Prince William will have a lot of personal touches throughout the day- though these may not be significant or even noticed by the media and the thousands of eyes upon them. I’m predicting Kate to wear a gown with sleeves(not full, but covering the shoulders) and something unexpected and fashion forward- very sleek, structured and stylish but with the traditional protocol that is called for. A bouquet of roses (a nod to Diana and English blooms) and gardenias. I predict Kate will wear a minimal tiara but include fresh blooms in her hair. William, I predict will be wearing a grey morning suit.

I’d love to see the bridesmaids in a beautiful taupe colour or slate blue but think something spring like will ultimately be the winner. The wedding will be a nod to Britain with many traditional English blooms and flowers used throughout.

Ms Paisley: Gown: will be ivory and structured but not fussy or too overwhelming. It will have a train, but it will be of a more practical length

Hair: half up, half down – will be able to accommodate a tiara and a veil but will still look soft and romantic.

Flowers: English roses and maybe a nod to Wales with some white daffodils.

Something old: I’d like to see her carry something personal from her family – maybe a piece of family heirloom jewellery like a bracelet or a locket that can be attached to the bouquet

Something new: the gown of course

Something borrowed: a diamond tiara from the royal collection

Something blue: the sapphire engagement ring of course!

Ms Stripey: I predict that there will be pale green or blue included in the wedding colours. Also lots of white flowers. Her gown will be simple and fairly slinky – not like a cream puff at all, and not too much skin showing. Honeymoon will be in a place that no-one has guessed.

Photo from Facets By Marcia

Ms Floral: I love, love, love jewellery (which is quite unfortunate for my bank account!) so I’m very excited to see what pieces Kate will wear tomorrow. I’m thinking she will be borrowing some of the family jewels, and my suspicion is she could even wear Diana’s sapphire necklace and earrings that match her engagement ring. I don’t think Kate will disappoint no matter what she chooses and she’s definitely going to sparkle!

Ms Gingham: As with so many things in life, the royal wedding has come full circle. I remember being in early primary school when Charles and Diana’s wedding preparations were in full swing. I have some vivid memories of this time in the early 1980’s.

There was a permeating sense of anticipation, even though I don’t think we kids had any idea who Charles and Diana actually were. All we knew was that a prince and princess were getting married … how exciting! At school, we were given a song to learn in honour of the occasion, printed on the old purple printer with the smell of methylated spirit still quite vivid in my mind … “Charlie’s getting married, at last. To a lovely girl without a (and I don’t remember the rest because my brother used to replace the next words with something rude).

Just like now with Kate Middleton’s dress, back then, the question on everyone’s lips was what will she be wearing? I remember seeing a report on the news about the hundreds of silk worms that were busily spinning the silk that was going to be used to make the fabric for Diana’a wedding dress. I was amazed … you mean silk comes from worms???

Then, all too soon, we were watching the wedding on T.V. A real princess was getting married to her prince. Sure, he wasn’t very handsome, but we didn’t really see that. He was a real, live prince! And didn’t he look like one in his regal attire, waiting nervously for his bride at the altar.

I couldn’t get over the hoards of people lining the streets to get a glimpse of Diana. She was in the royal carriage, waving to the crowds. To me, she looked full of joy and a little bit nervous. But most importantly, to my young eyes she was so beautiful. Then she was walking down the aisle, in that huge dress with the longest train ever. No wonder they needed all those silk worms! All I could think of was how lucky she was to be wearing that beautiful dress and to be marrying a prince. There was no question that they would live happily ever after.

I think that everyone around the world, young and old were thinking that. After they were married, on the balcony waving out to the massive crowd and having their first kisses, we were filled with such joy for them and hope for the rest of us. And I guess that is what a royal wedding represents … hope.

Today, we’ve learnt a lot about life. We saw how it ended for Charles and Diana and we can’t help but think that some were luckier than others in the outcome.

But now, here is Prince William. We saw him grow up. From the first pictures of him as a baby sucking on Diana’s little finger, to the truly handsome prince he has become today. We have seen his romance with Kate Middleton go through it’s trials and tribulations. This is a couple we can identify with. They aren’t picture perfect, they’re human just like the rest of us. So, will Kate be wearing the picture perfect dress just like her mother in law did?

Here is what I predict. I would like to think that Kate will be wearing a dress that we can all identify with. I imagine her in a straight gown, hugging her silhouette with minimal embellishment. I think she will be regal in her train. It will be long just like Diana’s was. In my mind the only flowers she could have would be roses, full of fragrance and pale in colour. Her tiara will be the same one Diana was wearing all those years ago.

Beyond this, what I do hope, is that the union of Prince William and Kate Middleton will be filled with love and happiness. I hope that they will be a couple that our children, who will be watching with the same excitement and wonder as we did, can look up to, and one day hope to emanate. For even through natural disasters, recessions and death, that is what a royal wedding represents … hope.

Oh and for a little fun this morning, a video from T Mobile based off one of my favourite ever Youtube videos- the JK wedding dance.

Okay Team Polkadot! What are your predictions?

Sigourney and Andrew’s Vintage Inspired Australian Wedding

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


Sigourney and Andrew

Vintage Australian. It never gets overdone to me – not through the gorgeous lace dresses, the sentimental touches and the rolling grassy hills. Today’s wedding of Sigourney and Andrew near Bathurst (NSW) is a nod to their favourite era with the modern touches of today.

Sigourney recalls how she and Andrew met. “We met at work where we were soon set up by Emma, who I went to school with and worked with, who is one of our lovely bridesmaids. After our first date we knew what we had was different and very special. We later found out that when we were younger we used to do gymnastics together and have the same piano teacher.”

Today’s images are by a photographer making his Polka Dot Bride debut- Mark Quade. I love Mark’s elegant captures – not only do they capture the details and elegant portraiture but they capture the wide open landscapes which are so integral to the atmosphere of a wedding.

Sigourney wore the “Jacqueline” gown by Bella Donna.

Flowers were created by Florabundance, Bathurst, (02 63321822). I also attached a brooch and photo of my Pompa who died when I was younger, so he was still there with me on our special day

Sigourney wore special accessories. ” I wore my Nana’s brooch in my hair, the other was a hair clip my bridesmaids gave me as a present. My earnings were from Princess Bride (02 63319322) and my bracelet was purchased at a cute little shop for $30!”

Sigourney walked down the aisle to “The Promise” by Tracey Chapman.

Sigourney and Andrew were married on Sigourney’s mother and step father’s  beautiful garden on their farm at Yetholme, 26km out of Bathurst.

The girls carried fans from Pink Frosting while the boys wore hats from Surf Stitch.

Sigourney says “Marrying each other proved to be the most romantic thing we have ever done and we are so glad we have such wonderful memories of it!”

Signourney’s step dad Nino had mown a giant heart in the hill which looked beautiful from the ceremony.

Sigourney’s bridesmaids wore beading evening dresses from by Edressit.

A nice story is that I organised with our English friend Tim for him to be able to come over from England to surprise Andrew and be there on our wedding day which was lovely.

The Reception was 2km down the road at the Yetholme Community Hall. Sigourney says “There are always dramas on your wedding day but ours seemed to go quite smoothly. Due to some confusion we did not end up with a table cover for the bridal table so we threw some lace tablecloths over the top which worked perfectly with our theme! The was probably only two minutes of rain after the ceremony so we were very lucky it disappeared to allow us to get photos around the property!”

Sigourney and Andrew put a lot of work into their reception. They hired chair covers from Posh Designs and Sigourney hand made plenty of touches. “I handmade the save the date cards and invitations. For our thank you messages we sent out a photo of us and a sign we made which we had at the front gate for everyone to see. 99% of the wedding was D.I.Y ! A very long and lengthy process that proved to be worth it in the end. The Save the Date cards , invitations, flowers in all of the vases, Candy Table, the decorations ( a lot of visits to Vinnies), handmade rose and lavender bath bombs as a nice present to everyone, a handmade photo booth and name frames and photos on the tables.”

Sigourney and Andrew hired Central West Catering “We had a buffet style feast with chicken, snags (sausages) and steak and an assortment of delicious salads! ” and Annie’s Ice-Cream (George Street Bathurst). ” For our desert we had our favourite “Sofala Gold” ice-cream served in little cups.”

The couple hired band Peacock Dreams for the reception. Sigourney recalls “Our first dance was to “Even when I am sleeping” by Leonardo’s Bride which was sung live by our amazing band. A song Andrew and I have always loved together since we started dating in 2005.

Once everyone had left Andrew and I decided to sit on the couch at the hall and admire our surroundings, talk about our day over another cup of ice-cream and finish the night with one last dance. ”

Congratulations Sigourney and Andrew! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us today! Thank you also to Mark Quade for sharing today’s images

Photographs by Mark Quade

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