Lauren & Carlee
There is a special charm about a country charm, a special relaxed energy of community and friendship that only they can deliver. For Lauren and Carlee, Bathurst, the home town of Lauren, was the most gorgeous place to celebrate a wedding that was, in Lauren’s words “as anti-tradition” as possible. These two? They walked down the aisle together, they chose non-fussy (but beautiful) outfits, they danced to “My Girl” and they spent the entire day sharing their love for each other. Henry Paul Photography there to capture every single moment.
The pair met via an online dating app, bonding over the multitude of things they had in common. It was sometime later that Carlee popped the question on a trip to Byron Bay She shares the story “I ordered the engagement ring off a jeweller in San Francisco, based on a design Lauren had pointed out a few months earlier. I had the ring hidden at home for about three months before the proposal.
We went on a holiday to Byron Bay and I had planned to propose whilst we were there. It almost ended in disaster after I thought Lauren had found the ring hidden in our luggage after she uncharacteristically unpacked all of our luggage when we arrived! Playing it cool (not) I questioned her intently and repeatedly about whether she had come across anything unexpected while unpacking the bags. After some deliberation, I went along with the original plan of proposing at sunrise at the lighthouse. I did get a little caught up in the romance and had briefly forgotten that Lauren is most definitely not a morning person and had to be convinced to get out of bed in the dark to our holiday transport (push bikes) to the lighthouse (on top of a big hill). On the way, it started to rain and I got us a little lost, safe to say the proposal wasn’t quite going to plan at this point. Eventually, I summoned up the courage to pop the question, I pulled the ring box out and held it before me but before I got the question to my lips Lauren had snatched the ring box out of my hand, started crying and put the ring on. I later confirmed that this was a “yes”.”
Lauren chose a lace mini dress from Lover the Label telling “I think only other brides can really appreciate the amount of effort that goes into looking for “the dress”. I wanted a simple, no-fuss dress that would be comfortable and cool enough for a February wedding. I went to Lover as my first point of call and tried on maybe 7-8 dresses, none were quite what I had had in mind. I visited some bridal stores which quickly helped me realise that I didn’t want a quintessential wedding dress. I eventually returned to Lover after maybe five months of searching, tried on what must have been the only dress previously tried and it was perfect.”
Carlee dressed in a navy Joe Button suit with polka dot bow tie. Lauren sharing “Carlee chose to have a custom suit made with Joe Button. She had previously had them tailor a suit for her and couldn’t quite find what she was looking for anywhere else. They were also great in organising some very last minute alterations to the sizing just before the wedding.”
Guests were greeted with a delicious grazing table full of treats.
The bride’s walked down the aisle together with their fathers to Tenerife Sea by Ed Sheehan. Lauren remembering ” I was quite nervous and I could feel my hand shaking and a lump in my throat. As I saw Lauren walking with her Dad walking towards us (we all walked down the isle together) she gave me a quick little ‘I love you smile’ and a ‘don’t cry’ look. At that moment I knew I had chosen an amazing human that always knows just how to love and support me.”
Lauren and Carlee chose Married By Leah to officiate their wedding ceremony, telling “We wanted our ceremony to be short and simple but have a little bit of both of us in it. We hoped it would be intimate but a bit fun as well. We hired a celebrant Married by Leah who put together a lovely narrative of us from our meetings and some written material she had prepared for us to respond to. We had one reading Blessing For A Marriage, by James Dillet Freeman and wrote our own vows.”
Bathurst venue The Beekeeper’s Inn set the scene for the day, Carlee and Lauren choosing the one venue for both their ceremony and reception. Lauren tells “We chose our venue as we could have the ceremony and reception on site. It was in Bathurst where we had decided we wanted our wedding and within our budget. The venue staff really clinched the deal and were accommodating and organised from our first meeting. It is also really beautiful and if you haven’t been, you should visit.”
Lauren and Carlie included their favourite people in the day. Lauren says “Carlee chose her close friends Jacky and Louise to be her unbridesmaids/best women and I chose my oldest friend Erin. We didn’t have a formal wedding party as we didn’t want a formal wedding but it kind of ended up there anyway.”
Ivory Rose Botanicals created beautiful floral details for the day. “I didn’t really choose any particular flowers but instead chose an amazing florist in Ivory Rose Botanical’s Maddie Veitch. I gave her some photos of the styles I preferred and a rough colour guide and she did the rest” shares Lauren.
Of their chosen photographer, Lauren can’t speak highly enough. She tells “We chose Henry Paul as almost our first detail for our wedding, we loved his relatively unstructured shots and the colour tones he uses in his work. He is also a super lovely human. He brought along another talented photographer Chris Gray to help him shoot the day and together they were stellar wedding guests who worked so well to capture our day in an incredibly beautiful but fun way.”
Lauren & Carlee could not rave more about their vendors, sharing “They were all great. Our venue, our photographers, our cake decorator, our hair and makeup teams, our celebrant. Every vendor was amazing and organised and friendly. They all had pretty great advice so I don’t think anyone should feel shy in asking the vendors what they think about how you are approaching your wedding – they do it more often than you!”
The reception decor was kept very simple. The brides telling “Our friends added some extra green touches to the venue but outside of that not really. We went for simple table decorations, flowers, candles and the table number as there are already a lot of decisions to make! We did have a “choose a seat, not a side” chalkboard and a seating chart set up that we borrowed from a friend. We had people take a polaroid in exchange for their seating tag and hung these on the frame leaving us with some lovely memories.”
Lauren tells of the newlyweds first dance “We chose “My Girl” for our first dance, it seemed like an obvious choice but is also has a lot of joy in it rather than being too slow or sappy.”
A big congratulations to you both Lauren and Carlee! Thank you for sharing your beautiful day with us. Thank you also to Henry Paul Photography for sharing today’s beautiful celebration.
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.