Image by David Henry Photography
Amanda & Blake
I love the feeling of Amanda and Blake’s Lersmurdie Falls Perth engagement. It goes from romantic to this most beautiful dramatic, raw feeling with incredible Mother Nature playing a leading role. Amanda and Blake worked with photographer Steven Cheah Photography to capture their engagement.
Amanda tells their story. “In September 2011, Blake was an Australian study abroad student at my university in Minnesota. One evening after finding out he was cute and on campus, I placed myself strategically in the seat behind him on the bus (called TheLink) in hopes of striking up a conversation. That somehow went awry when he thought I was trying to make a move on his friend and we spent the rest of the semester as casual acquaintances.
In 2012, I spent a semester studying in Fremantle at Blake’s university, where we continued to run into each other and I continued to try and get his attention, but to no immediate avail. Months later, both of us back in our respective countries (and when Blake finally came to his senses), he began to woo me long-distance, and as luck had it, found out I already had a boyfriend.
In August 2013, our timing finally met on the same track and we began a long-distance relationship between Perth and Minnesota.”
” The funniest part of our relationship is just the fact that we’ve been “together” for two and a half years but have only been physically in the same place for 9 of those 29 months.”
On what she loves about Blake, Amanda tells, “I love that Blake prioritizes what’s really important. He’s taught me to never trivialize time spent with each other and how big of a role family must play in our lives. I also love that he always seems to get where I am mentally and emotionally. He constantly reminds me that he’s always here to support me and takes on my problems as if they were his own.”
The proposal was one to remember – with a blizzard, near death moments, a lettuce dinner and a very special poem. Blake dives in. ” A group of us drove through a horrendous blizzard to a friend’s cattle ranch in Minnesota. The weather was terrible, making what was supposed to be a 1hour drive 3 hours long filled with anxiety. I remember the tail-end of the car sliding out on the icy road on the way there thinking “this is how it ends. I didn’t even get to ask her”. Contrary to my fearful creative imagination, we arrived safely.
The host had prepared a steak dinner with all the hospitable trimmings. I enjoyed three leaves of lettuce in anticipation of the event follow; the steak was nice and I still feel bad to this day for not being able to eat any at the time. The dinner concluded and we began to go around the table and share a poem of their choice. This was a previously planned event, and I took advantage of it. As each person shared their words the nerves built within me. Amanda had no idea.
It came to a close friend of ours who was sat next to Amanda. He began to introduce a poem nonchalantly that was in fact one that I had written for this occasion.
“It was cold on the Link, Fall, two thousand and eleven.
Not here did I think, Of this angel sent from heaven.
So parted we did, To my dismay.
In my thoughts I hid, Reliving that fateful day.
We next met down-under, And yet we could not be.
That was due to blunder, Of my immaturity.
Then our friendship grew, And we’d talk about our day.
The dreams I had for you, Of which I couldn’t say.
Communicating trapped in a screen, Ten thousand miles apart.
The most beautiful girl I’ve seen, Entrusted with my heart.
What more can I say, But get down on one knee. “
At this point i cut him off and continued “Amanda Gay, Will you marry me? She waited about 15 lonnnng seconds and nodded through teary eyes.”
On what he loves about Amanda, Blake tells, “I love Amanda’s unconditional compassion. She has a tremendous ability to love and I am grateful to be a recipient of that affection. She supports me unconditionally and doesn’t complain – too much – when I steal the covers in the night.”
Caitlin & Michael
I love a good wedding and I love a good engagement party turned wedding which is exactly what Caitlin and Michael decided to do for their own special day. They chose Christine Lim to capture their wedding day in all of it’s gorgeous glory.
On how they met, Caitlin fills us in. “Six years ago we met at a gig after hearing a rumour that one of our favourite bands were performing as a secret special guest. We were both at a bar near the venue with friends and Michael was with a mutual friend of ours and they ended up coming and joining our table. After being introduced we hit it off immediately and have talked every day since meeting. I knew that night that Michael was the one for me and this was the person I was one day going to marry.”
Unassuming guests were invited to an engagement party – little did they know what was about to happen! The bride remembers, “We really wanted to keep it fun and casual and we thought that having a surprise wedding was a perfect way to do that. By keeping it as a surprise (immediate family were in on the secret) we got to plan our day as we wanted it and it felt extra special because it was our happy secret.”
The couple chose Caitlin’s family home for their wedding. “We decided pretty early on that we would get married in my parent’s garden, I just couldn’t imagine it taking place anywhere else.”
“Having a wedding at your house instead of hiring venue is a lot of work, everyone was running around like crazy on the day and mum and I chose to get our hair and makeup done away from the house to get away from all the stress! ”
“I got my dress from Melbourne from Gwendolynne, I wanted a non-traditional wedding dress and found there were a lot of dress shops over that that had dresses, which matched my style more. Gwendolynne was the third shop we tried when mum and I were over visiting my brother and I fell in love with the dresses, it was really hard picking which one I wanted as all of her dresses are amazing. We decided on the ‘Tara’ dress and I had to go over several times for fittings. The detailing and beading on her dresses are stunning.”
The couple chose a first look, the bride remarking, “We wanted our wedding to be an enjoyable experience for us and our guests so we had our photos taken before the ceremony so the reception started straight after the ceremony and we got to celebrate with our guests immediately.”
Of their photographer, Caitlin remarks, “We chose Christine Lim as we had seen her beautiful photos and felt they matched perfectly with how we wanted our photos to look. After meeting her we felt very at ease and comfortable with her. So many guests commented afterwards what a great photographer she was and how impressed they were with her skill at taking photos without imposing or getting in the way of guests. We are so glad we went with Christine as our photos are perfect and she has captured the love and joy of the day.”
“One of our favourite things about the wedding was the family involvement. Mum and Michael and Michael’s mum decorated vases and jars before the day, mum and her friend made and decorated our cakes. A lot of my family is from Victoria and they flew in a few days early, so for the few days before the wedding everyone was at our house helping set up the backyard, arranging flowers, putting lights up. Michael also made the bar and the beer that was served at the wedding.”
Caitlin walked down the aisle to “Scudbooks by Hudson Mohawke. We wanted something grand and happy to make an entrance to and it suited the mood perfectly.”
The couple’s dog Lana was the proud ring bearer.
Chelsea Crowe officiated the wedding, the bride remarking, “We had Chelsea Crowe as our marriage celebrant and she was kind enough to let us have our family friend do most of the ceremony and then Chelsea stepped in to do the legal bit. Having our family friend up there to officiate added an extra personal touch to the ceremony.”
“Writing and saying our own vows was really special, I have never felt happier and more loved than when we were saying our vows.”
Niece Holly was very much involved in the day, says Caitlin. “Our niece Holly (4) chose to come up and stand with us during the ceremony and afterwards told everyone she ‘helped us get married’, she also insisted on sitting on my lap while we signed our marriage certificate and tried to join in during our first dance. She is very important to us so it was nice she wanted to be so involved.”
Thank you for sharing your day with us Caitlin and Michael! Congratulations! Thank you also to Christine Lim for sharing today’s celebration.
Good morning Dotties! It was so wonderful this week to finally introduce you properly to my pet project Aisle Society. Working with 30 other wedding bloggers has been the most incredible experience and one I have learnt so much from, so it’s nice to see our little idea out in the world!
It’s been a busy but good week at Polka Dot HQ, ending off last week with what is surely going to become a seasonal cocktail planning day. It’s been a good one! What have you been up to?
We love these Warm Woollen Capes
We sat down for a chat with the gorgeous Louise Alvarez of Louise Alvarez Couture
Beautiful romance at Danika and Joel’s Rustic Old Broadwater Farm Wedding
Stunning script with the Legendaria font
Shoe education! The Six Essential Dress Shoes Every Man Should Own
Rounding up our favourite Warm Woollen Capes
Dreaming of a Blissful Bora Bora Honeymoon
Whats on trend for 2016? Five Reasons To Have A Destination Wedding
Pretty in pink details at Kirsten and Tom’s Pretty Pink Maleny Wedding
Loving the sound of this unique Boodles Gin Fennel Freeze
The gorgeous Madeleine Chiller Photography has a special offer for Polka Dot readers! Book one of her packages, which comes with a fine art book, before June 30, 2016, and her flights to your destination will be included at no extra charge. What an amazing offer! Terms and conditions apply so contact Madeleine to find out more!
Industrial style Brisbane venue Lightspace are holding an open night this Wednesday, 11th of May. Head on down between 6-8pm for a fun night of q&a with expert suppliers, good food, entertainment and a gorgeous wedding setup! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Want more events? Head to our events calendar!
Sydney brides! Savvy Brides are hosting a Made With Love Bridal special event on the 14th of May! Book your place for a special chance to meet designer Carla in store along with discount offers and of course – champagne! Book your appointment by emailing email@example.com.
Our film of the week comes from Native Video and is the wedding of Glen and Stacey who chose a gorgeous classic city setting for their wedding day. The beautiful romance of their day captured so wonderfully in motion.