Laura & Byrne’s Handmade Whale Beach Wedding

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


Laura & Byrne

The sense of relaxation around the handmade beach wedding of Laura and Byrne is just the ticket for today. The couple chose a spot they visit regularly for their wedding, before honouring their family history with a post-wedding reception at the groom’s grandmother’s property – where the family has celebrated together for more than 58 years.  Thanks to Russell Stafford their two-day extravaganza was all captured down to the littlest detail.

Laura tells the serendipitous tale of how the couple came to meet. “After a series of unfortunate events including three cancelled plans, a lost id, and a missed cab, I ended up on a bus to Lavender Bay to watch the fireworks on NYE 2011, where I met Byrne. We spent the entire night together, shared a midnight kiss, and have been inseparable ever since.”

Laura and Byrne chose The Botanical Gypsy to style their flowers, noting “The flowers were all native Australia flora, sourced sustainably by The Botanical Gypsy – most foraged from the Minto region and really showcased how beautiful Australia flowers can be. Byrne and I both love bushwalking and nature so it was important to incorporate that into our day. We also had eucalyptus runners lining our aisle.”

The couple met before their ceremony for a “first look”.

The couple chose Whale Beach Surf Life Saving Club  for their ceremony, explaining “We had our ceremony at Whale Beach SlSC where we are both members, Byrne has been a member for 16 years. We spend most of our free time there. It was the first wedding they’ve hosted.”

The couple’s dog Chica, was the ring bearer.

Byrne and Laura walked down the aisle together to Cat Power’s “Sea Of Love”.

Liam Chapman officiated the ceremony, the bride noting  “We wanted our ceremony to be family centric, non religious, light hearted and to talk about our relationship with each other and with the world. Our celebrant did an awesome job of crafting the ceremony with us and it reflected our laid back personalities so well.”


Of their photographer, the bride remarks “He was easy going and fun and we barely noticed him throughout the two days so he got so many awesome candid shots which was what we were hoping for.”

“The cake smash photos make me laugh. It’s an American tradition to smash cake in each other’s faces, but not Australian so that was different for our guests to see.”

The next day, guests gathered at a family home for the reception. Laura explaining “Our reception was at Byrne’s grandmother’s place in Pymble. The family has lived there for 58 years and have had many parties but no weddings. It was very special to have this as our location especially since we are bringing in the next generation of LaGinestra’s.”

Laura tells, of family heirlooms.  “I carried a linen cut out from a doll my grandmother gave me as a baby, we also used a bowl that my dad and stepmom used in their wedding to carry our flowers in. Having the party at the family home in Pymble was very special too.”

Guests enjoyed two nights of delicious food thanks to Artkitchen  & The Italian Job Catering Co. Laura noting “All our vendors were amazing. We spent a lot of time selecting them. The Botanical Gypsy flowers were unreal. The food both nights was awesome!”

Laura tells “We didn’t have a structured first dance but ended up dancing to a cover of the Sesame Street theme song as played by the amazing 1 man band/guitarist Tully.”

A big thank you to Laura and Byrne for sharing their wedding day stories with us! Thank you also to Russell Stafford for today’s gorgeous images!


This post features the following wedding vendors. If you've been featured below, we'd love to get to know you. Click here to join Polka Dot Bride.


We ask that the comments you leave on our site are respectful of each other and the personal stories that are told. We reserve the right to remove any comments that do not fall within our site policies.


Trackback from your own site.