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Elly & Eric

With winter closing in on us, it’s a great time to take an escape to this wonderful waterside wedding in Noosa today. This is Elly and Eric’s intimate Noosa wedding in their own words and the images are captured by Nicole Laufer Photography.

From the moment we met, it was never going to be a “normal” wedding. No white dress (it was pink), no bridal party (but there was wine and cookies) and no official first dance (there was an unofficial version – a drunken attempt at the after party, 12 hours later, to a 90’s love song). But before all of that, there was this…

The founder of Petal & Paper Stationery, Elly has been in the wedding industry for a while now. Helping make bride’s and groom’s dreams come true on the regular, it was hard to believe that the day had come when she had to make her OWN dreams come true (and her soon-to-be-husband Eric’s, of course… grooms totally count too). Originally the couple had settled on a big grand wedding with lots of people, lots of food, lots of tradition and lots of, well, everything… in Northern NSW in front of the picturesque Mount Warning. In fact, this is the exact location that Eric said to her – before they were even engaged – “hey, when we get married, we should get married here!”. Elly scoffed, “”WHEN” hey?” – someone was counting their chickens before they hatched!

A little over 6 months later, and after Elly had undergone a pretty substantial spine operation, she was lying in bed, recovering when something really bizarre and unexpected happened…

There she was, in her t-shirt nightie with “DO NOT DISTURB” boldly emblazoned on the front (introvert at heart, obviously), her hair a mess, no makeup and unable to do much of anything since she was on bed rest for 6 weeks. “Eric, can you help me up so I can go have a shower?” (still need to keep the bod clean, shower chairs and aids helped – a lot). He said “Sure!” and as he knelt beside the bed to help her up he stayed there.. a little too long… weirdly long. Why so long? HE PULLED OUT A RING!

Can you believe it! Obviously her outer physical appearance wasn’t detrimental to the occasion. She sobbed, he asked the big question, she didn’t even say yes! “Soooo, is that a yes?” asked Eric with the ring already firmly on her finger. “OH MY GOD, YES OF COURSE!” she laughed. What a story. One she definitely didn’t really want to tell anyone about, but here we are.

Fast forward almost a year and Elly and Eric decided, to heck with a big wedding, they want to travel! Ergo, big mountains were traded for little mountains, big ideas were traded for smaller ideas and a huge guest list was traded for close friends and immediate family only. I believe they call those “micro-weddings” these days. Which is probably the most on-trend thing these two nerds have ever done!

Their discovery of Sunshine Coast’s Fancy and Free Weddings – a wedding and elopement service offering small, intimate packed or packaged for a larger wedding – made everything super easy. Natalie Skye, The Sunny Celebrant owns and operates Fancy and Free Weddings and is just about the biggest and bubbliest personality you can find in someone who’s so tiny! She took care of all the essentials and coordinated the day perfectly. Cat Shipton from the well-known Sunshine Coast based Wedding Florist Woods & Bloom not only provided the florals for the day, but also provided styling as well as being a guest at the wedding! Cat and Elly met previously a couple of years ago at a styled shoot and hit it off immediately (we’re told it’s because Elly brought doughnuts) – the rest is history! The day was captured by Nicole Laufer Photography a Sunshine Coast based Wedding Photographer who is one of the easiest and loveliest people to be around and certainly knows how to whip a rowdy wedding crowd into shape!

Like every wedding, there were problems. For one, we actually forgot to decide on a song to walk down the aisle too, so 10 minutes before Elly was to walk the aisle, she called Eric and said “ummm did we actually end up picking a song?” the answer was no and the end result was to “just wing it”! The weather was also pretty poor (although for some of the photos you wouldn’t have guessed it!) – the rain was on and off for the whole day and the wind was horrendous! Originally planning to have the wedding at Hidden Grove, they had to give that idea up 2 hours before the ceremony. At the end of the day, the two things that matter most to these two are family and friends (and food if Elly is being 100% honest with everyone) and to have the day filled with both is more than they ever could have asked for.

His Vows: “I will always shower you with hugs, kisses and so much cat fur “furever”, and I will always call you my “Shorty”.

Her Vows: “I vow to agree to disagree on a lot of things especially who’s taller…”

Our favourite part of the day (apart from the celebrations after) was escaping after their very important “I Do’s” and hopping in the car to go take some photos around Noosa. Laughing, windows down, breeze flowing through the open windows and reflecting on moments and memories. Cat had the forethought to pack them a celebratory snack package including Elly’s favourite Moscato and some incredible cookies made by Sweet P Cakes & Cookies. What a gem! Those went down nicely, even Nicole agreed (it’s always nice to feed the photographer a little somethin’ somethin’)!

The decision to have a small wedding is not one we regret at all. The close-knit ceremony meant they didn’t miss anything, including when Eric accidentally tried to put the wedding ring on the wrong finger and their 7 year old niece rolled her eyes and said “gosh, how hard is it!?”. The incredible photos from Nicole Laufer are definitely ones that will be flicked through on a regular occasion – memories are great, but we all know they have a tendency to fade overtime. The importance of having a skilled professional to capture the day was not lost on us – we’ll be cherishing these photos for a very long time to come.

Ms Zigzag says: Such a colourful, joyous day! The weather may not have been on this couple’s side but it didn’t stop them from having the best day of their lives. Thank you so much to Elli (founder of Petal and Paper) and her husband Eric for sharing your perfect day with us. 

About Petal and Paper: Petal & Paper Stationery are your local Brisbane wedding invitation & stationery specialists. Throughout our time in the industry, our work has been published in many prestigious and well-known wedding blogs and magazines throughout Australia including Polka Dot Bride and White Magazine.

We create custom designs to reflect your unique and special day. We create everything from invitations and information cards, custom maps and save the dates, to on the day stationery and signage. Weather you’re looking for a budget friendly option or want to go all out with foil and laser cut designs, we can do it all.

Photographer: Nicole Laufer Photography / Venue: Noosa Boathouse / Ceremony Officiant: Natalie Skye - The Sunny Celebrant / Styling: Fancy and Free Weddings / Flowers: Woods & Bloom / Hair & Makeup Artist: MD Brides / Invitations & Stationery: Petal & Paper Stationery / Wedding Cake: Buttermilked / Sweet Treats: SweetP Cakes and Cookies

Stef & Clint’s Melbourne City Glamour Wedding

To say that we adore Stef and Clint’s Melbourne City glamour wedding would be an understatement. Her beautiful beaded gown, her dapper groom and the elegant features of their wedding reception all tie together to create a truly gorgeous day.

We asked the newlyweds what makes for a happy marriage. Stef’s speaks on behalf of the couple saying, “According to Clint, the sequence of answers should always be ‘yes, yes, no’. According to me, happy wife, happy life!”

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Photographer: Anitra Wells

Caz & Louis 

When you receive a wedding invitation in the mail and it says “wear whatever makes you happy”, you know that #1 you have some cool friends and #2 you’re in for a hell of a good time. With the groom kicking around in Chuck Taylors and the bride wearing a beautiful boho skirt and top that she picked up the day before the wedding, these two did their wedding their own way incorporating everyone and everything they both love – and yes, that includes traditional Texan BBQ for dinner. The words are written by the bride (our regular contributor Caz Pringle) and the photographs are taken by Will Hartl, from This Day Forward Weddings

How did you meet? We actually went to primary school together!! We lived three streets away from each other and used to walk to school together. Louis moved away up north at the end of Grade 3 and he left me broken hearted as I had a bit of a crush on the kid back in the early 90’s. We reconnected 19 years later when I was looking for a Melbourne band to interview for an online music magazine and came across Louis in an image of his old band called Zuzu Angel. The rest is history.

Our wedding style was Rockabilly warehouse party meets Texan BBQ. We really wanted to have a relaxed atmosphere where our friends and family could wear what they wanted and let loose. The dress code was actually “wear whatever makes you happy” and one of Lou’s mates hinted at taking this to its logical extreme. Thankfully, or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, he rocked up in a nice pair of jeans and a t-shirt.

We got married in an old timber warehouse in North Melbourne called Laurens Hall (which has since been knocked down) on the 4th March 2016. It was a massive venue, so we used a lot of the existing wooden infrastructure to close in the space to make it more intimate.

My dress was more of a skirt and a top – I unashamedly worship Stevie Nicks, so she was my inspiration. I found my skirt at Spell & the Gypsy Collective in Byron Bay and the cami top from Scanlan Theodore in Melbourne (the day before the wedding as I changed my mind on my top last minute!! Crazy, I know!) I tied it together with a vintage brown belt, brown tasselled heels and a chunky silver necklace.

Louis is a casual dude and he didn’t want to be anything else than himself on our wedding day. He wore brown chinos and a blue shirt from Jack London, teamed with white Converse high top Chuck Taylors.

We had our best friends sign the registry and our brothers do some short speeches, but didn’t have a formal bridal party.

My beautiful and talented friend and stylist Leah Hallis – a director of Create Expectations – picked the flowers from a floral wholesaler and arranged them in all sorts of second hand vases given to us by a friend. She also handmade the birch wood archway onsite herself – made from birch wood, twine, Asarina Scandens (snap dragon vine) and moss on the base. Baby daisy flowers were wedged into the moss base and throughout the arch.

She also used some of the flowers to braid into my hair, she is a woman of many, many talents.

My oldest brother played “Little Wing” by Jimi Hendrix on electric guitar as I walked down the aisle – I love the song so much I have some of the lyrics tattooed on my left arm. Mike knows his way around a Stratocaster too.

My year 12 drama teacher was our celebrant and she was awesome – she understood the vibe of the wedding straight away, Louis and I got along incredibly well with her and being able to project her voice in a massive timber warehouse was no mean feat! Our ceremony was peppered with music lyrics and our vows were short, sweet and humorous… I think I actually promised not to ask Louis to shave his beard (may not have stuck to that one haha). The whole thing lasted no more than 15 minutes. All of our friends and family had a glass of champagne or a drink in hand, it was so relaxed.

Although we had the Texan BBQ (brisket and hot links) and sides catered by Le Bon Ton, my mother and godmother made all of the salads themselves. My best friend and I ran around the day before the wedding picking up all of the wine, beer and champagne from Dan Murphy’s – completely filling two cars full of beverages, which was a joyful experience for us both. Using my contacts in the events industry I was able to arrange all of the lighting, sound, glassware and kitchen ware discounted or in some cases free of charge through some of my suppliers who are also my friends.

One of our best friends was the head chef at Le Bon Ton in Melbourne at the time, and both Louis and I are ridiculously in love with Texan BBQ. Leaning on the friendship, the Le Bon Ton chefs prepared a BBQ that guests could help themselves to throughout the night. We had the smoker stationed outside in the courtyard so people could stand around and watch the show and breathe in the glorious BBQ air. Paul from Silver Creek Smokers was at the helm and he tells a hell of a story! Most went back for seconds, thirds and perhaps fourths. We had compliments about the food for months afterwards.

My father was terminally ill and we were concerned he wouldn’t be able to make the wedding, but he did. He was pushed in his wheelchair down the aisle by my middle brother and had a smile on his face the whole time. He got the chance to ‘give his daughter away’, which I knew was so important to him. And to a man that he liked and wholly approved of, which I’m sure he quite liked too.

My favourite photo of the day (below) is of my brothers and I flanking our Dad in his wheelchair. The old boy was just so pumped he could make the day. We all were.

Special heirlooms… My wedding band belonged to my grandmother, given to her by my grandfather after they had been married for 50 years. It is all I wear nowadays!

A tribute to Caz… Louis wrote and performed a song he had written specifically for the occasion, standing high above the crowd on a mezzanine and wielding a 12-string guitar. I hadn’t heard the song before and it left not a dry eye in the house. It was quite a rock star moment.

The photographer… My old friend and professional photographer Will Hartl, from This Day Forward Weddings, was our photographer. He and I had worked together for many years at a bunch of the events I worked on. He knows I hate photos and prefer to be behind the scenes, so he just captured the laid-back vibe and special moments with our families without making a ‘now it is time for the family photos’ structure to the day. They turned out spectacularly.

At the time of our wedding planning, I was co-running an event management company called Social Lion and honestly, holding our wedding in March was madness really. Social Lion was just finishing up the Australian Open and were well into production on the Grand Prix. My business partner (who was also our MC) and I just added it to the list of gigs we were already planning. Suddenly, at one point we thought “oh yeahhh I am getting married next month, better get onto that!”. It was all a bit crazy in hindsight!

Any advice for engaged couples in the depths of planning their wedding? Remember to steal some moments with your partner throughout the night. It just goes by so fast and you spend most of the time chatting to friends and family. Sharing a laugh and a drink with the one you’re marrying is bloody important. Oh… and remember to eat!

A parting note from the groom… Caz and her business partner Matty pretty much planned the entire wedding, so I didn’t see the venue or their glorious little personal touches first-hand until the day. Walking into Lauren’s Hall, immaculately and individually styled, with the smell of Texas BBQ in the air and the smooth, funky soul of Van Morrison on the wind is something I won’t forget in a hurry. Nor will I forget Caz, looking a million bucks, making the whole crowd laugh during her vows with her usual mix of grace and wit. Or Rog – Caz’s dad – and the smile on his face when I shook his hand as he came down the aisle. Or my mum’s excited, arrhythmic arm-dance thing when I sang a song – there are few things as strangely hypnotic as a Jilly Valentine boogie.

Ms Zigzag says: As you can tell from this super chill, “come exactly as you are” wedding, Caz and Louis are an incredibly cool duo. And while they might be total rockstars, they are also just two big softies with huge hearts and we wish them all the very best for their lives together. You can read more from our regular contributor Caz on Polka Dot Bride here

About the author Caz Pringle: Caz has been in the Event Management industry for the last decade, producing events for the likes of Rolex, Revlon, New Balance, Jeep, The Australian Open, Peroni and Alfa Romeo. After running her own events company for three years, she now lives in Antalya, Turkey with her husband Louis – where they remotely work as a copywriters and digital content producers. Caz also writes the blog www.shecanpunch.com about boxing and women’s empowerment, you can follow it on Insta @SheCanPunch.

Photographer: Will Hartl - This Day Forward / Catering: Le Bon Ton / Styling: Leah Hallis Styling / DJ: Black Caesar Events / Groom's Attire: Jack London / Lighting: Austage Events / Makeup Artist: Courtney King / Rental Furniture: Dann Event Hire / Venue: Laurens Hall, North Melbourne / Wedding Cake: Miss Trixie Drinks Tea