• polkadotbride-submissions
  • polkadotbride-colour-book
  • Vendor of the week
    Vendor of the Week

    This week we preview

    Miriam Avery


  • polkadotbride-wedding-directory
  • polkadotbride-circle
  • PDB Slide WINTER 1200 x 600px

Danielle & Adam’s Relaxed Fitzroy Wedding at Panama Dining Room

by | Australia - Victoria, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Danielle & Adam

If there ever was a wedding, that held all of Melbourne’s signature, then I think Danielle & Adam’s relaxed Fitzroy wedding at the Panama Dining Room might just be it. There’s a stunningly beaded Anna Campbell gown, a modern restaurant backdrop, beautiful blooms and it’s all topped off with gorgeous imagery by It’s Beautiful Here. This one? It’s one of those stories you want to grab a glass of wine and sneak right into because this wedding s filled with all the right stuff- love, heart, soul and a heck of a lot of friendship.

In fact, it was a friend that led these two together, and it was this very friend that acted as MC for the night, which was filled with stories, not the least of which, told by the couple’s celebrant. The tale of how Adam popped the question “Our cheeky Celebrant Jon Von Goes told everyone who was there that the “romantic” spot Adam picked to propose was actually a place where we’d previously ‘parked’ significantly… which was hilariously accurate. Adam had encouraged me to go and pick out a ring about a year beforehand, and once I’d found one that I fell in love with, he made sure he’d gone back to secure it. Then hid it in his ski pants (either very clever or very very stupid!) for a year until it was the right time. It was our first date night out after we’d had our second child, and on the way to dinner on a balmy summer evening he suddenly dropped down on one knee on busy Nicholson Street in Fitzroy. After much giggling and squealing and not actually remembering to say the right word it finally dawned on me that I had to say yes!”

Danielle kicked off the day with a nod to her mum, by donning her dress! She explains “I put on my Mum’s wedding dress from the late 80s before I put my own on. It was such a blast with everyone in the house getting a kick out of how amazing it looked! My Mum thought it was hilarious and my Dad was beaming.

I’d always grown up LOVING my parent’s wedding video and idolising my mother on her wedding day for being so incredibly beautiful, so it was lovely to put it on and not only feel like a princess (because who couldn’t under all that tulle!) but physically feel like we were the same size (as we are very physically similar). It was also just such a kick for my parents to see me on my special day paying homage to theirs.”

Daniella’s actual wedding gown? A beautiful beaded Anna Campbell number found on a weekend shopping trip, she tells “I took my mother in law, mother and sister out bridal dress shopping. They all had a clear idea of what kind of styles suited me best and I did agree, but I hated the ‘bridal’ experience. It all felt too over-the-top. I had a few days of crisis where I researched evening wear and tried on a few things, but nothing clicked. It was by pure luck that Anna Campbell’s seconds and samples warehouse is a 5-minute drive from my house, so I took my Mum and two small kids to try on a few things. Her classic, relaxed style really appealed to me and it wasn’t long before we’d found something that had a really vintage flair to it. My toddler said “Mummy’s got a pretty dress on!” and I was convinced.”

To ensure they maximised their time with guests, Daniella and Adam met for a first look in Fitzroy Gardens accompanied by only their photographers. “We chose our photographers Kat and Scout because they were so down to earth, completely trustworthy and very good at capturing the beauty in the special little candid moments.” Tells the bride “They really nailed it. They managed to show us at our best, loving each other, having an incredibly fun day, the joy in the ceremony, the laughter. The guests! It’s what it’s all about.”

The modern Panama Dining Room was the most beautiful setting for Daniella and Adam’s ceremony and reception, the bride explaining “We wanted it to be as easy as possible for the guests, so we wanted to have the ceremony and reception all in one venue without any time or travel in between. We did all of our family photos in the Fitzroy gardens beforehand, then at 5pm had our ceremony at the Panama Dining Room, rolling straight into canapes and cocktail hour (we ducked out for about an hour to walk around Fitzroy, then have a glass of champagne on the rooftop of the Panama) and we were back for the start of our sit-down dinner.”

Lulu Bird styled floral arrangements of greenery with fresh white flowers. Daniella noting “I put all of my trust in Lucie from lulubird. I knew she’d worked at the Panama before and had done an incredible job with the arch floral display. I knew I wanted to keep it simple, with a lot of greenery that would match the Panama, but also include some modern succulents (I’m a big fan of growing succulents, more on that later) and white flowers. Simple, elegant, but with a modern twist. What she came up with fit the bill perfectly! (And there were a lot of succulents in there from my neighbour’s garden!)

The nods to the bride’s parent’s wedding continued, with the choice of song for the processional. Danielle remembers “Our friends Erickson and Deanna (who are in a band called Oh Deanna) covered Celine Dion’s The Power Of Love. It was featured in my Mum and Dad’s wedding video from the 80s and I just had to recreate that same emotional feeling I had when watching it as a kid. Deanna’s sweet and sultry voice made a guilty pleasure into a very cool modern cover of a song. I have always wanted it as my walk-down-the-aisle song! It helps that I knew Adam was the one when he completely unashamedly sang it with me at the top of our lungs in the car together.”

Danielle and Adam worked with Jon Von Goes on their ceremony, noting “Our ceremony was the awesome off-the-cuff work of Jon Von Goes. The guy is a talkback radio heavyweight and a kooky, intelligent and witty celebrant who really understands both how serious and how much love and joy goes into a wedding. His emphasis is on keeping it relevant (so we wanted it to be short and to the point! About US!) as well as making it entertaining and getting a lot of audience participation (including a couple of our friends who starred in our stories of first meeting as well as getting together, as well as making sure our kids and our parents each got a round of applause!) We didn’t worry about the readings, but instead put a lot of thought (and a bit of funny) into our vows.””

“Honestly our favourite part of wedding planning was, getting to spend time together working on a project that was ultimately about us” remarks Danielle. “I look back fondly on the times we met with our celebrant Jon and having dinner together afterwards, our process of deciding what venue to pick (we took our baby on a trip around the inner north, having a beer at each potential venue destination!) and talking about how much we loved each other, what things would best reflect us (our music, our friends playing important roles, wild-card elements, just lots of fun).”

The newlyweds ensured they included their children in the day “Our daughter Emily stole the show with her sweet nature and desire to be the centre of attention. Alexander was sadly very overwhelmed and over-excited and according to him he ‘didn’t have a very good time’. But I got to have some special quiet moments with each of my kids – Alexander held my hand a lot of the time and walked me around Fitzroy gardens as we had the previous weekend just the two of us scouting photography locations. Emily (11 months) is still breastfeeding and we got to have a quiet moment after the ceremony as she needed some close contact and a feed.

We didn’t want to wait to have children and we’re glad we didn’t conform to expectations in that way. To have them there and involved was very special. They won’t understand the significance for ages to come, but they’ll appreciate it. It also makes it a mature wedding – all of the vows, the solemnity, we truly understand and LIVE that kind of partnership day-to-day as parents.”

Tells Danielle “We loved our private and not so private moments. Our first look, our photos with just the two of us, spending time on the dance floor together and of course when we got to leave! The party continued on as we went back to the hotel.”

The bride spent months gathering succulents, potting them up into arrangements which decorated the reception and acted as wedding favours for the day. Her handiwork even extended to the wedding cake, of which she remembers “Although it didn’t quite turn out in the photos I’m proud of my cake skills as I did the whole thing myself. The little placeholders were pebbles we wrote on ourselves after figuring out that the cost of printing individual place cards seemed disproportionate to what they needed to be. A lot of small details like this we solved as a team (the pebbles were Adam’s idea, the execution of it was my job)”.

Danielle remembers “We got to have a glass of cheeky champagne on the rooftop of the Panama with our bridal party, then we came back in and while waiting for our mate Dean to introduce us, he’s basically telling the entire room that ‘you know that one in a million? That one person you can’t live without? Well, tonight these people have found that one in a million. It’s me – Dean’. We cracked up so hard.”

“We had been very selective about our guest list. We put an emphasis on making sure we invited our friends and people who meant a lot to us. This is important as we were surrounded by family and friends we’d had a lot to do with and spent a lot of time with. You don’t want to spend your time at your wedding talking to relatives you don’t know, you want to boogie on the dance floor with your mates.”

For their first dance, the newlyweds chose “The Wonder Of You” by Elvis, telling “It’s just a classic and as our DJ pointed out from our musical choices, we’re happy to be daggy and romantic. We could’ve chosen so many songs which mean so much to us both, our playlist and musical cues were all equally important to us.”

And the dancing? Not just limited to the newlyweds! One of Danielle’s favourite memories is hitting the dance floor with her father “My Dad and I have a tradition of ripping it up on the dance floor, so despite his bad knee, we did a Father-Daughter dance. We got the DJ to lead with some classical music as we came together and started to waltz, only to cut straight to Crazy Little Thing Called Love (Queen) so that we could get some of our excellent dance moves out there.”

Capping off a beautiful day? Danielle and Adam chose Nathan Kaso Weddings to capture this beautiful film of their day together.

A big congratulations to you both Danielle & Adam. Thank you for sharing the beauty of your day with us. Thank you also to It’s Beautiful Here for today’s beautiful images.

Photographer: It's Beautiful Here / Cinematographer: Nathan Kaso Weddings / Bride's Dress: Anna Campbell / Hairstylist: Maretta Aquilla / Flowers: Lulu Bird / Venue: Panama Dining Room / Ceremony Officiant: Jon Von Goes
Visit Ms Polka Dot's Directory

Alex & Simon’s Romantic & Classic Country Wedding

by | Australia - Queensland, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Alex & Simon

Set in the long, golden grass of the countryside, this epically romantic wedding celebration is beautiful in every detail! With sweeping scenery, arbours of roses and that knock-your-socks-off kind of love, Quince & Mulberry Studios captured it all.

Having met online, Simon and Alex had their first date in Fortitude Valley. Simon says, ”I asked Alex to come for a ride on my motorbike the next day. She arrived at my place to find a driveway full of motorbikes and my friends who she hadn’t met yet. I had apparently left that part out.” The surprise worked out for the best, with Simon proposing on their two year anniversary in Bali.

Alex originally found her dress online, sharing, ”My dress was by Emmy Mae and was so beautiful and comfortable to wear. After seeing the dress on Instagram, I instantly googled the designer and sent a photo of the dress to my mum. She sent me a text back saying that it made her want to cry thinking of me in it so I knew it was a strong contender. We went down the coast, a few weeks later, to the bridal store where it was stocked and I tried it on and bought it that same day. I was given my late grandmother’s engagement ring which had been resized and professionally cleaned so I wore that on the day which was very special.” The groom wore a Peter Jacksons navy blue suit with neutral accessories.

Set at Spicers Hidden Vale, the outdoor ceremony was held under a fig tree overlooking the valley. The bride and groom share, ”We had trouble choosing only a few people to be a part of our bridal party so we decided to keep it simple and choose one special person each to stand by our sides. I chose my sister and Simon chose his grandfather (Pop). Neither of us particularly like being the centre of attention so we opted for a relatively short ceremony. Our celebrant, Natasha Hill, provided a range of options for us to choose from to personalise our ceremony. We included the traditional, “I do’s” in our ceremony and added in our own written vows too.” Alex walked down the aisle with her father to ‘I Found You’ by Kina Grannis.

Choosing a favourite image proved difficult for the groom, but he shares, ”We had a few photos with my Pop, him and I helping each other with the final touches before walking out to the ceremony. They are special to me because my Pop has been a huge influence in my life. But my favourite photo is of Alex and I walking hand in hand back up the aisle at the end of our ceremony. We are both smiling and ready to take on the world!” Mrs Gibbons Flowers provided the goods with gorgeous rambling roses and country blooms for the day. Alex tells, ”I’ve always loved flowers, especially roses, so I knew I wanted to have them in my bouquet. I was really excited after meeting with our florist to talk about our vision and what she delivered on the day was absolutely stunning. A standout piece on the day was the decorated floral arbour that we stood in front of during the ceremony.”

With breathtakingly beautiful photos to share, the bride and groom were thrilled with Quince & Mulberry Studios, sharing, ”Kate was fantastic. We had an engagement shoot done months before the wedding which helped us become more comfortable in front of the camera. She made us feel at ease. Kate is bright and bubbly and had no trouble working with the crowd when it came time to organise the group shots. Our guests commented afterwards about how great she had been to work with.” And although you may not be able to tell, the bride turned a blue a few times! Simon tells, ”Alex’s dress was stunning but didn’t provide much in the way of warmth. When we were having photos taken in the field after the ceremony was finished, Alex had to be warmed up with blankets. She took it like a champion and it doesn’t look like she’s uncomfortable in the photos.”

The golden country fields provided a gorgeous backdrop for the newlyweds, and it was kicked up a notch or three with the addition of Simon’s old Landcruiser. Alex shares, ”We had planned on having it at the venue in some sort of capacity, but it didn’t look like it was going to happen. Simon worked very hard in the week leading up to our wedding to ensure it was ready in time and ended up having to scrub his hands to remove the evidence before for the ceremony. All of our vendors worked very well together. Kate our photographer and Amber our florist went above and beyond with a few extra touches – they surprised us by having the ute decorated with flowers which helped tie everything in.”

The romance of the day was amplified with the styling of the ceremony and reception venue, Spicers Hidden Vale. Alex tells, ”It had the rustic, country feel that we were looking for. We had our reception in the barn area and the adjacent courtyard under fairy lights. It was the perfect setting and was just what we had imagined. The venue was already filled with character so we let it speak for itself for the most part. We had planned on having to install some lighting in the courtyard but the venue ended up having their lights installed for us which was a big help.”

Closing out the day, the bride and groom had their first dance to ‘Hold You In My Arms’ by Ray Lamontagne. They remember, ”It was in the courtyard outside the barn, surrounded by our friends and family. Neither of us are especially skilled dancers, so it was a fairly informal amalgamation of several dancing styles. It was a lot of fun nonetheless, with lots of laughter and cheering from our spectators. During the reception, my sister (maid of honour) went up to make her speech which turned into a rap song. Everyone was in hysterics!”

Thank you to our gorgeous bride and groom for sharing your beautiful wedding day, and congratulations! Thank you also to Quince & Mulberry Studios for sharing your magnificent photos!

Photographer: Quince & Mulberry Studios / Bride's Dress: Emmy Mae / Bridesmaid Dresses: Shona Joy / Makeup Artist: Vivienne Anna Makeup / Groom's Attire: Peter Jacksons / Flowers: Mrs Gibbons Flowers / Ceremony Venue: Spicers Hidden Vale / Ceremony Officiant: Natasha Hill / Ceremony Musicians: Fab Wedding Music / Reception Venue: Spicers Hidden Vale / Wedding Cake: Vanilla Pod

Lumière Collection from French Collection by Wendy Makin

by | Bridal Fashion, Bride


I don’t know about you, but sometimes? I find beautiful, elegant wedding gowns that let the bride and just the bride do the talking, are hard to find, and somehow, I always return to the beautiful simplicity of Australian designer Wendy Makin who completely nails it.

Her band new range “Lumiere” from the designer’s French collection (designed with vintage glamour and classic styling in mind) and focuses on gowns that are easy to wear, without compromising on fit.

“Lumiere” draws inspiration from capturing the light. Beautiful vintage laces, delicate beading, back detailing all beautifully understated, beautifully elegant and beautifully allowing their wearer to not only let their own personality shine through, but feel comfortable while doing it.

The gowns are not designed for one bride, instead, they’re designed for many. As at home in a church, as they are on the beach, in a boho-inspired wedding, or something more classic.

The new collection brought to life the beautiful work of photographer Fontaine Photo with hair and makeup artist Bella Brides shows off the beauty of these gowns. The tulle and lace billowing in the breeze, the soft colour tones delicate against the seaside backdrop proving the versatility and beauty of the collection.

The ‘Luminere’ range is available from Wendy Makin French Collection stockists now in Australia, UK and New Zealand from December/January.

Photographer: Fontaine Photo / Gowns: Wendy Makin / Hair & Makeup Artist: Bella Brides

Five Ways To Personalise Your Save The Dates

by | Bride, Engagements, Stationery And Paper Goods


If there ever was a time of year that it seems every social media scroll has another friend announce their “newly engaged” status, it’s now. Something about the sunshine, the festive season and the merriment makes for plenty of proposals and for us? It has to be one of our favourite times of year!

And what’s the first thing one does after celebrating all things engagement? Start getting serious about the planning and set a date of course! Enter the Save The Date, these have become so popular in recent years and it’s easy to see why. Advising guests of the date well before your wedding allows them to lock it in, save for and make their travel plans and give them plenty of notice to get there. So today, we’re talking save the dates, but not just save the dates, we’re diving into how to make these truly personal, to reflect your own personal style!

Today we partnered with Minted and our Aisle Society colleagues to share five ways to personalise your save the dates and make them truly reflect who you are. We already know and love Minted for their wedding stationery, but did you know they also create Save The Dates with their independent artists?  With pages upon page of beautiful designs, the website makes it easy as pie to choose a design (sort by style, colour, printing type, invitation shape- the list goes on!) preview, edit and order! And the best part? Not only can you customise the text, but you can also customise the photos included!

Ami of Lakeshore In Love for Aisle Society wanted to create something really cozy for this engagement session, and it’s completely appropriate since we’re talking about all the ways to personalise your save the dates. This session was completely beautiful with a little baking, a little puppy snuggling and plenty of romance. This kind of session completely epitomises “feel good”. And it just shows, that whatever is “you”, works!

Use your engagement photos on your stationery

Like these two, your save the dates are a brilliant way to use your engagement photos and completely personalise the style with your own personalities. With many photographers offering engagement sessions, it’s great chance to not only get to know your wedding photographer but also take some beautiful photographs of yourselves as a couple to celebrate your relationship without all the layers of a wedding. This option has to be #1 for personalising your save the dates!


Choose a meaningful setting

There are so many places you can take your engagement photos- let’s be honest, the options are endless! But take the time to think of a venue that is personal to you and your own life together. Do you love to spend your time together in the city? In the bush? Or are you, like our brides to be who love nothing better than snuggling up at home?  I actually adore at home engagement sessions because they have an extra special cozy vibe, and everything is just a little more relaxed (besides where else can your four-legged friends easily roam free?). Choose the setting or location that means the most to you.

Choose an activity you love together

For these two, a cozy bake off in their home and snuggling with their puppy dog was quintessentially “them”, but this is a great time to show off what you love. Are you most often found camping together or riding your bikes? Or getting coffee at a favourite cafe? Choosing an activity you love together is a brilliant way to personalise your engagement session and therefore save the dates and you don’t have to worry about sourcing props that might not relate to who you are.

Choose stationery designs that suit your style

If your personal style is jeans and a t-shirt and you hate the idea of dressing up, a beautiful letterpress save the date with copperplate font might not be for you. The same goes if you love dressing up in your finest- a more relaxed suite might not be your style. Look for elements in the designs that reflect your own personal style, whether it’s designed elements like fonts and flourishes, to colours and the design style. Minted is particularly great for this because they work with independent designers to create their designs, so each suite is completely off the moment, fresh and on trend,

Consider each element of the stationery design

If you want to go the extra mile, really consider each element of your save the date (Minted, for instance, allows you to completely customise every element, from colour, to shape, to foil and paper and even allows you to especially request custom changes unique to you). Perhaps there are phrases or sayings that you are known to say to each other, perhaps you want a little more of a casual twist on the wording, or more formal. Perhaps you want to caption the photos you use, to explain their special story to your guests, or include a motif or drawing that means a lot to you.

Compensation for this post was provided by Minted for Aisle Society. All opinions are the author’s own are not endorsed by Minted, Aisle Society, or their affiliates.

Photographer: Photography By Lauren / Photographer: Tiffaney Childs Photography / Invitations & Stationery: Minted Weddings / Production and Styling (Engagement Session): Lakeshore In Love for Aisle Society / Venue (Engagement Session): DL Loft / Makeup Artist (Engagement Session): Hannah Elisabeth Beauty / Hairstylist (Engagement Session): Stephanie Reid Hair / Production & Styling (Product Imagery): Lakeshore In Love for Aisle Society / Florals & Styling (Product Imagery): FlowersFlowers