I must admit I was a little enchanted with the Western Australian wedding of Emma and Reinier. Something about the fresh country air, the wide open belly laughs, the wandering through the country trees, the snuggles and cuddles, the emotion. This for me is what weddings and the stories they bring are all about. Luckily for us, the talented Aimee Claire Photography was there to captured every moment as it happened because this one we cannot wait to share.
It was Reinier’s beard that led the couple together, meeting on an app for beard lovers, both living on opposite sides of the world and making an instant connection that was instantly cemented when Reinier jumped on a plane to Western Australia and meet the girl of his dreams.
It was in Europe, on a “meet the parents” trip that he finally popped the question, the pair telling “When Emma visited Europe in July 2016, Reinier took her to France to meet his parents, and then to Switzerland to meet his grandparents and extended family. Reinier proposed to Emma above a glacier lake in the Swiss Alps, since his grandfather had proposed to his grandmother in the Alps, and they had been married for over 50 years, he told Emma he was hopeful the Alps could do the same for them. He proposed at the highest/halfway point of the trail leading around the lake, so they had walked up as a couple, but came down the mountain engaged.
Emma would like it noted, that the weeks leading up to the proposal, Reinier had given her numerous false alarms, with fake proposals. Using a cheap wedding ring box with an old coin in it. Allegedly to soften her guard for when the real proposal was to take place.”
Emma wore a beautiful lace gown. “Emma ordered her dress on Etsy, from a dressmaker in the USA. She wanted a bespoke dress at a reasonable price, with a rustic lace style. She was excited to find that the dress was comfortable to wear, without the need for alterations, and keeping in style with the wedding.”
Emma and Reinier chose the beautiful country estate of Stonebarn for their wedding, hosting guests for a weekend of celebrations. Emma noting “We chose this venue because on one hand it provided us with the rustic setting we wanted, and on the other hand it offers eight bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, so our immediate family and guests from Europe could stay at the venue with us. We hired Stonebarn for three days, giving us a day to set up with no rush, and a day to relax afterwards with family.”
Emma walked down the aisle to Lily Allen’s “Somewhere Only We Know” on the arms of her parents. The couple timed it to the doors opening as the interlude began. Emma and Reinier share “To signify the influence our mothers have had on us becoming who we are, we decided that Emma was accompanied by her father and mother down the aisle. Reinier walked his mother down the aisle before the ceremony to signify this.”
Emma and Reinier opted for a ceremony that was purely about the legalities and blessings. “We wanted an intimate but “no-nonsense” wedding. We had no religious vows and stuck with the legally required vows. We included our guests by having a “ring warming” with our engraved wooden ring box, with our wedding rings in it. It was passed from guest to guest, for them to hold with the thought of a wish for us.”
The couple gave plenty of nods towards the groom’s Dutch heritage remembering “Reinier asked Emma to put his wedding ring on his right hand (he wears it on the right as well) because this is traditionally the hand on which Dutch men wear their wedding ring. We also were heartened by the attendance of my two best friends from the Netherlands”. The groom was even gifted with a traditional French “Coupe de marriage” a silver plated wedding cup from the groom’s mother.
The newlyweds adored working with their photographer Aimee Claire. The bride exclaiming “Aimee was absolutely gorgeous! She instantly got the vibe we wanted for our wedding (photographs), very accommodating, but not at all intrusive. We loved that she took photos of the bridal party and guests that we could send to them afterwards. She never rushed us.
Reinier was impressed with her refusal to do staged photographs of the witnesses signing any documents, she got beautiful shots of the real thing.”
The couple’s favourite photos? Their forest adventure with a shoeless bride!
Emma and Reinier embraced the natural, rustic setting with plenty of wood – they started off with invitations from Felicitations, explaining “We had a strong theme of wood in our wedding. Our invitations were laser engraved on wood, the men in the bridal party were all wearing wooden bow ties. The ring box was wood. We had a wooden cake topper, and little love hearts cut out of birch bark scattered around the dinner table. Reinier’s wedding ring is Australian Jarrah encased in titanium.”
Opting for a rustic vibe, Emma and Reinier decorated the wedding themselves.
Guests enjoyed a sit-down feast with served up by Laundry 43 and drinks from caravan bar Charlie & Collette. Shares the bride “Our caterer, Laundry 43 from Busselton prepared the most gorgeous menu for us. The Baravan (Charlie & Colette) went the extra mile as well, and were such friendly people. ”
The newlyweds were having too much fun for a first dance, but they made up for it later, in the most romantic of ways. “We had such a great time during and after the dinner reception, that we forgot all about our first dance. We did, however, have a little dance in our bedroom afterwards when we realised, we almost forgot to do one. We softly listened to “Sons and Daughters” by Allman Brown on Reinier’s phone, as not to wake up guests that by that time had gone to bed” they share.
A big congratulations to both Emma and Reinier. Thank you for sharing the stories of your day with us. Thank you also to Aimee Claire Photography for sharing today’s celebration.