Danika & Joel
Joel and I met in 2007 whilst we were holidaying on Hamilton Island. We had an amazing week in such a beautiful part of the world – believing the fact it was just a holiday romance but the moment we both boarded the planes to go to our seperate homes (Joel is from Western Australia and I’m from Queensland), we knew we didn’t want to be apart. I packed up and moved to Western Australia where we started our lives together and the rest is our happily ever after.
Five years after we met, we were actually on Hamilton Island for my sister’s birthday. Joel hired a helicopter and we flew to a secluded Whitehaven Beach where a picnic was waiting; later we swam with a turtle and drank champagne. He popped the question – after asking for my Dad’s permission earlier that day ( while they were playing golf!) and we celebrated all night with our family and friends. It was a magical day!
On our actual wedding day, getting ready was so exciting! All the girls and I finished our final touches to the venue, Old Broadwater Farm, in the morning – I was up early, too excited to stay in bed a second longer! I wasn’t nervous at all, just so excited to marry my best friend as we have both been ready for so long. I was dancing around the kitchen watching the girls get ready and I kept asking “is it time yet?!”
The glam squad, Abbie Mac and Top Cut Hair and Beauty were incredible – they made us all feel so beautiful and are so amazing at what they do. I even cried when I saw my finished reflection because I was so overwhelmed!
Finding my dress was easy; my Mum and I walked into Bohemian Brides to look for a headpiece but saw a beautiful Mia Solano gown hanging on its own. I tried it on and bought it that same day. It was strapless, detailed in heavy lace and so comfortable! I just wanted something that I could dance and sit down in.
I also bought the headpiece! It was perfect as I don’t like a lot of bling. My bridesmaids bought me some gorgeous Pandora rings which I also wore and now wear everyday.
Margaret River region has hundreds of beautiful wineries perfect for weddings but we chose the gorgeous original homestead Old Broadwater Farm because it had everything we needed in one location – an immaculate rose garden for the ceremony (we said our I do’s under the big poplar tree), an awesome wooden deck for cocktail hour and lawn games and a brand new amazing marquee with lighting for the party. Old Broadwater Farm also provided accommodation for our bridal party the night of the wedding.
The ceremony was my favourite part of the day – not a dry eye in the house! Joel walked both our mums down the aisle to start which was special to us and them – we wanted them to know how much they meant to us. Just a note to brides – make sure you or your bridesmaids have a tissue on hand; we spent a few minutes trying to find one when the waterworks came (hehe!)
The whole day was incredible – so many of our guests had flown from around the globe to be there, which meant so much to both of us. The weather was outstanding after a week of rain; we were very grateful for the sun so we could have the ceremony under the big shady tree!
Our flowers were arranged by Mable and Grace. The girls were so great to work with but then again I just put my faith in all our vendors ( after all, that is what they do for a living!) and it paid off in a big way. My key words were native, rustic and romantic – and that’s exactly what they gave us throughout the venue and our bouquets.
We just wanted our guests and ourselves to be relaxed, have everything they could want and just enjoy themselves. We used lots of floaty fabric, candles and soft lighting to create a romantic, intimate vibe. All the girls in the family and bridal party made the details – chalkboards, menus and place tags. It was so much fun doing it all together.
We also had a gorgeous arch made behind our bridal table to which we put together ourselves and Mable and Grace styled it beautifully with flowers; we absolutely loved the final outcome and wish we could have kept it!
For our fabulous bridal party, we chose those special few that we have known us all our lives and have seen us grow as a couple – our best friends and my beautiful younger sister who was my Maid of Honour. They flew all the way from Canada and Queensland to be there for us in Western Australia which made the day all that more special.
Our photographer, Ben Yew was incredible – he made us feel so relaxed and made us laugh so much all day. Then in the intimate moments, it was like he wasn’t even there. Our wedding photos are now something we will treasure forever – when I look at them I feel every emotion we felt on that day.
For our music, we asked Bella Blakemore to sing; she has a very original sound and she made some of our favourite songs her own; they were the perfect background for our romantic, rustic farm wedding. All the guests commented how amazingly talented she was.
Our first dance was to an acoustic version of ‘All Of Me’ by John Legend. We learned a few steps for it but forgot it all when the time came! It didn’t matter though as we just soaked up the moment and appreciated how lucky we were.
Our guests are still talking about the food from Supper Road. We couldn’t fault a single thing – from the two hours of tapas to the amazing chocolate torte (that I may have gone back to for seconds!) We made the cake ourselves the night before the wedding – I always was one for last minute activities. It turned out great!
The new marquee on the farm was set up beautifully by the staff – it’s like they knew what I was envisioning before I even knew! Festoon lights hung from the roof and an array of candles and flowers in assorted jars decorated the venue. The speeches were hilarious and full of love – then we headed back outside into the courtyard for the photobooth, bar and giant jenga before we danced the night away before leaving under a bridge of sparklers!
Ms Chinoiserie Says: Congratulations Danika and Joel; how lucky you were to be able to share your beautiful day with friends and family from around the world!
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