Kayla & Lee
One of the things that is so absolutely wonderful about weddings, is how everyone pitches in. For today’s happy newlyweds Kayla and Lee, there really couldn’t have been much more of a team effort. Choosing a location that was incredibly remote and a teeny tiny guest list, the newlyweds enlisted every piece of help they could. They decorated the wedding together, they cooked the food together, they styled the blooms, they strung the lights. This wedding was a true DIY affair and thanks to photographer Richard Grainger was on hand to capture it all.
And it makes sense that family was a big part of their day because family is the very reason they met. Kayla shares their story “Lee and I met through our family – his older brother is married to my older sister. Lee is a very private and independent person… I had known his family for more than a year before I ever met Lee. We ended up first meeting at my sister’s baby shower, we hit it off straight away and I remember looking up at him, laughing and thinking that this was the man I had been waiting for. The next morning I told my mum I was going to marry him! A year later we were engaged.”
The day was always going to be a little bit of magic, just ask the groom! Kayla recounts Lee’s favourite memory “The morning of the wedding, as the sun was slowly rising over the mountains and the animals had begun stirring, Lee drove off in his ute with our dogs in search of branches to hang fairly lights from. Lee’s favourite memory from the day was the joy he felt at that moment – as the weather warmed up and the sun started shining, it was slowly turning into a beautiful day. Driving through the mountains alone, he felt happy, relaxed and at peace. That was when he truly knew it was going to be a beautiful day and felt extremely lucky for what was ahead.”
We promised you plenty of pitching in and help, and here’s the evidence. With a guestlist of just twenty and an isolated location, it was all hands on deck to pull the wedding together, Kayla explaining “We had a very small wedding of 20 people, just our immediate family. We were very lucky to have the family stay with us and enjoy the whole weekend – the vows were an added bonus! Due to Borumba being so remote, the whole wedding was DIY. My sister Asha is a wedding stylist and was able to create beautiful foliage pieces for the dinner setting, my father created the lighting, our food was a camp roast cooked by my brother-in-law, my other sister Nikita styled my hair… everybody did their bit! To me, the best part was seeing everyone come together throughout the morning to create something beautiful. It was fun, relaxed and happy… I was on cloud nine! My father-in-law (a farmer who’s worked at Borumba his whole life) cried when he saw how magical it was. He said he could never have imagined Borumba looking so good. That was really special.”
Shares the bride “My favourite part of the day was the morning, as we were all setting up. I really enjoyed the day and seeing everyone happy, relaxed and working together. My mum said I was in a “bliss bubble” all day.”
Kayla and Lee chose their home at Lake Borumba for their wedding, telling “Lee and I married at our home near Lake Borumba, Queensland. It’s 7,000-acre cattle property amongst the mountains. This place holds a very special place in our heart – it’s magical, peaceful, remote, picturesque and where some of our best memories are. When first trying to choose a location for the wedding we couldn’t decide. I really didn’t want a traditional venue, and Lee didn’t want anything big. People kept asking where we would get married and I was growing tired of it. One day I said to my colleague “every time people ask I just want to run away to Borumba”, then she suggested we get married there. It was perfect, I couldn’t believe I hadn’t of thought of it sooner. As soon as that decision was made everything fell into place.”
Kayla walked down the aisle to “When the Right One Comes Along” by Clare Bowen. My father walked me down the aisle (or rather hill!) to the big tree where we married.”
Kayla and Lee married under a very special tree. “We got married under the big old beautiful fig tree which sits on a green grass hill, right in the centre of the property. I have loved this tree for years, with its majestic statue and huge roots stretching for hundreds of metres. It’s a stunning tree and the first thing you see when you come home to Borumba. Being married there will always create beautiful memories when looking at the tree” explains the bride.
Kayla and Lee were married by Barbara Burt, noting “Barbara who drove with her husband two hours to get to our property – one hour is 4whl only! Barbara is such a kind, warm, welcoming soul and made both Lee and I very relaxed. I couldn’t believe they were brave enough to drive out on their own, but I am so glad they did!”
There was no bridesmaids or groomsmen for these two. “We didn’t have a bridal party, it was just Lee and I. I remember when we first met our celebrant she asked us if we were having a “bridal party” and I replied, “yeah, we’ll have a party after…?” I had no idea what the term even meant.. and thought it literally meant a party!” tells Kayla.
Of their photographer, Kayla remarks “Richard Grainger was our photographer and I could not have dreamed of a better one! I never wanted a photographer but as soon as my sister showed me his dreamy, moody wedding pictures, often with picturesque landscape, I knew he would be perfect. I had hoped that not only would he capture the wedding, but also this incredible weekend where the whole family was together. After the wedding, we were driving home when we first saw a wedding photo and I was so overwhelmed I couldn’t stop crying! Lee had to pull over because he was laughing so much at my reaction, then he saw the pics and realised how genuine I was then he started tearing up too. We ended up parked on the side of the road crying happy tears over how pretty these are. I honestly couldn’t believe they’re us. It’s so good to see our home, where we work so hard and so many tough times happen.. look so beautiful. Richie captures the heart of the place, the day, and the couple. It’s pure magic. On top of that, he is a legend of a person and just a great guy to have around on your wedding day!”
There are definitely perks to marrying at home, Kayla shares. “Something really cool we were able to do the next day, after the wedding, was walk through it all and re-live it. The next afternoon we walked down to the tree where we got married, then around the back where we had drinks. Then we went up to the house where the dinner feast was held and danced under the stars that night. It was amazingly special to re-live the experience and share with each other how we were feeling in each moment. It felt like closure, and great to experience it all from Lee’s perspective.”
Guests dined under a canopy of greenery lit by candles, on a feast cooked by the family. A bonfire warmed the air for a night of celebration.
The newlyweds took to the dancefloor to a very special song that held plenty of meaning, Kayla explains “Our first dance was incredibly special. We chose ‘Call of the Bellbird’ by The Webb Brothers. Before Lee’s grandfather purchased the Borumba property, it was owned by Australian country music legends – The Webb Brothers – three brothers who started the Gympie Music Muster when they opened the gates of their other cattle property, “Thornside”, to 6,000 country music fans. The song was written from the front steps of the Borumba homestead and is about the property. It describes the magical mountain setting, the place where your heart is at ease and the sound of Bellbirds – the first sound you hear when driving back home. It was so incredibly special to have our first dance to a song written about this magical, remote place we call home, by brothers who owned and loved it many years ago. After our first dance, we played the first dance songs of all our family who were there – and that was really special, everyone had their own magical moment and we got to celebrate lots of love!”
Congratulations Kayla & Lee! Thank you for sharing your special day with us! Thank you to Richard Grainger for today’s lovely images!