Zoe & Matthew

Take a (virtual) trip to Dayelsford with us today to celebrate the marriage of Zoe and Matthew. This couple initially met through mutual friends at university and were then politely encouraged to go on a date via a good friend/work colleague, who could see how much they had in common! A cheeky message from Zoe then prompted a drink at Neighbourhood Wine. She knew things were looking good when they had talked so much they didn’t realise the restaurant was empty! Fast forwarding to their wedding, the couple wanted authenticity. This meant nothing over the top, and they also wanted to showcase good produce in an Australian setting. And that they did! Below, Zoe details how their special day came to be and how it unfolded…

We married in November 2019 at The Burrow in Daylesford. We loved the area and fell in love with the venue.

I enjoyed the process of finding a wedding gown, but accidentally ended up with two dresses, which was quite stressful. I chose a price point and went for a dress trying experience with my mum and sister for some fun. I was keen to purchase a recycled/pre-owned dress, but couldn’t quite find the right one.

I then found one at a sample sale and it was the right price point, so went with it, but wasn’t in love with it. However, I then couldn’t get out of my mind visiting Georgia Young Couture in Carlton on my “trying on” day where everything was modern, beautifully made, designed and created locally. I felt flawless and elegant in her gowns and wanted that feeling on my wedding day. I was able to sell my original dress on Still White and did not regret my decision in any way.

Matthew’s suit was easy! He was measured to precision by Andrew at CECIL in Melbourne and the suit made within six weeks, with a perfectly made to measure shirt as well. Andrew had an excellent range of fabrics and Matthew looked so sharp in a perfectly fitting suit. We purchased his bow tie and pocket square from Le Colonel Moutarde in France, who have an excellent range of liberty print fabrics and are beautifully made.

On our wedding day, we wanted a relaxed morning and completed all our photographs prior to the ceremony. This meant we could capture those first reveal photos and have most of our photographs with perfect hair and makeup. The best part was we could then enjoy canapés and meet and greet our guests, without missing out! It made the afternoon flow so much more smoothly.

Flowers was one of the easiest decisions. Matthew first purchased me flowers from Mary Mary Studio and I fell in love with everything and anything Kate made. I gave Kate a basic colour palette and let her be as creative as she pleased. My only request was to include some orchids as my dad grew a stem of standard orchids for my mum’s bouquet.

We wanted an intimate bridal party. Matthew had his best mates from high school (Nathan) and university (Simon). I had the pleasure of my two incidentally perfectly matching friends, Louise from high school and Olivia from university.

Matthew played soccer with our photographer, Alex Motta of Motta Weddings, when they were both in school and always wanted to use him at our wedding, as he loved his ability to capture colour and moments in a photograph. I am so glad we did. He was professional, organised and creative. Alex was a pleasure to work with and we had our complete range of photographs within four weeks.

We wanted to utilise one venue with the ceremony and reception on site, as we have really enjoyed this in the past. We loved the setting of The Burrow in the Wombat State Forest, with the Australian bush as a backdrop.

I tried to surprise Matthew with ‘Perth’ by Bon Iver as it’s one of his favourites. Then he insisted on adding it to the list about two days before the wedding. We still went with it and it was a perfect song to enter to.

We wanted a personalised ceremony all about us, that told our story and celebrated our relationship and achievements thus far. We selected our incredible celebrant Lara Williams after seeing a photo of another wedding that raved about their celebrant. In the photo Lara wasn’t centre stage, she was off to the side letting the couple have their moment, which was exactly what we wanted. We selected a modern reading about love, which we then translated into French as we had some special French guests attending.

The reception space was modern and stylish and a blank canvas to work with, but we also wanted to minimise decorations and enjoy the view. For DIY, we purchased 130 of each dinner/side plates, vases, water jugs and napkins from Kmart and have since sold them on. We hired cutlery and glassware. We decorated the centre of the tables with gum leaves and baby’s breath and placed candles (IKEA) in glasses (from Daiso) for additional lighting. We also printed our invitations and place cards at Officeworks and thank you cards online through Optimal Print.

We also hired the wonderful team from Trufflepig Catering and Shelley was a pleasure to work with. We wanted to feast on share platters down the centre of the table, like one big family and great food is really important to us. Shelley did a remarkable job accommodating various dietary requirements. The food was wonderful, locally sourced where possible and we have received great feedback on the quality and quantity of produce.

I particularly enjoyed selecting vendors and ticking things off the list in the first six months of planning. It was fun and exciting to be planning our day, exactly as we wanted it.

We had a few dance lessons with a local instructor who was fantastic, we chose ‘Chateau’ by Angus & Julia Stone and have had so many compliments on the dance and song choice. It pays off to have a lesson or two.

We wanted our dance floor to be very active and we selected Tom from Melbourne Entertainment Company who played live saxophone and DJed. It was incredible! We didn’t get off the dance floor all night!

My advice for brides and grooms to be? Google spreadsheets are amazing for planning and organisation as they can be accessed anywhere and edited by multiple people simultaneously.



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Erin & Dejan

A wedding full of Polish, Russian and Serbian traditions, babushka dolls, vodka and dancing, set against the backdrop of beautiful, rainy Melbourne? A must-see. Erin and Dejan, who married in November last year at Melbourne Town Hall, had their hearts set on an elegant, city wedding that would be a lot of fun for their guests. The pair nailed their brief, with a picture perfect ceremony, iconic Melbourne portraits and a joyful reception with lots of celebrating at Fenix Events. The couple’s special day was captured by photographer Courtney Laura. Below, Erin tells us how her special day unfolded.

Dejan proposed to me on a trip to Europe in 2018. We were in Slovenia visiting his parents. Dejan had gone out the day before to buy the ring with his dad. He convinced me to climb to the top of the castle in Ljubljana and that’s where he proposed!

For my dress, I knew I wanted something very simple and timeless. I’m not a huge fan of lace on myself so that immediately eliminated a lot of dresses! In the end, I only went to two bridal shops, tried on about eight dresses and picked the one I liked the most! It was by Mikaella Bridal. Done and dusted in one day!

I went outside the box for my shoes. I knew that I wanted a red pair and ended up with a red/multi coloured pair that were perfect!

For my flowers, I knew that I wanted natives. I love waratahs so that was my feature flower and colour. My bouquet was made up of waratahs, small straw flowers, billy buttons, proteas, leukadendrons, flannel flowers, gum leaves and gum nuts. It was so heavy!

The groom wore a blue Bell & Barnett suit as he didn’t want black. We went with plain white shirts and ties with deep red flowers to match the bouquets.

Our ceremony was at Melbourne Town Hall. Dejan and I love the city we live in so we knew we wanted a city wedding. We looked at lots of different venues but in the end we chose Melbourne Town Hall for the simplicity of the balcony.

My dad walked me down the aisle to ‘Only You’ by Joshua Radin. It was a cover of the Yazoo original.

For my wedding ring, my mum gave me my nana’s engagement and wedding rings and I had them redesigned into one ring.

We wanted our ceremony to be very simple and not too long! We asked One of Dejan’s groomsmen to do a short reading for us called ‘A Lovely Love Story’ by Edward Monkton. We chose it because it made us laugh.

We originally thought about writing our own vows but in the end we decided on the traditional ones and were glad that we did.

Our celebrant was Meriki Comito and she was perfect! Easy to work with and helped us create our perfect ceremony.

During our ceremony we thought we would have a bit of fun. Once we were pronounced husband and wife, we had a shot of vodka as a nod to my Polish and Russian side of the family.

Our photographer was Courtney Laura. We had seen her work at a wedding fair that we went to at the last minute. She came and met us for lunch and showed us some of her work and we made our decision! She made us feel so comfortable when we were doing our portraits and got lots of natural photos. We knew we wanted urban/city shots and they are fantastic!
Our reception was at Fenix Events in Richmond. We chose Fenix for the beautiful scenery along The Yarra. The staff at Fenix were also extremely helpful and answered all our questions, and were more than willing to accommodate the little extra things we wanted as part of our reception.
We had two babushka dolls as our wedding cake topper because I love them and they represent my paternal nana. Our cake was by Miss Ladybird Cakes.
Our table runner was made up of the same flowers as my bouquet, and our centre pieces were random mixes of the flowers to sit on the base of the candles. The natives fit in perfectly with view of the gum trees on the banks of The Yarra. The beauty of natives is that they last a really long time. I had my bouquet in a vase at home for weeks afterwards and we still have two of the centrepieces on our bedside tables!
Dejan’s family are Serbian so we had a few traditions thrown in as well. He had his cousin hand around the buklija, a big flask filled with rakija to all the guests throughout the reception. We also had periods of the evening where we danced to kolo, a traditional circle dance where all the guests join hands to dance.

We also had lots of vodka and rakija flowing throughout the reception which I’m sure helped all of the guests get up and dance!

Ms Floral Says: Congratulations Erin and Dejan on a tradition-filled and fun-filled wedding! What an incredible celebration you pulled off in your gorgeous city of Melbourne. So happy you embraced the rain to get those stunning portraits. Wishing you all the very best in your married life together.

Polka Dot Dream Team...

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Alina & Wayne

Today’s sentimental and shabby chic wedding is beautiful and touching for so many reasons. The bride and groom, Alina and Wayne, married on what would have been their daughter’s second birthday. Sadly, their daughter, Aila, passed away from SIDS in April 2018. The couple chose this special date to marry on to honour Aila’s life. Alina and Wayne were surrounded by 300 loved ones, plus a large bridal party, making for an amazing and emotional day. Below, Alina details her and Wayne’s wedding journey, plus all the thoughtful and handmade details they included in their big day.

Wayne and I met online and dated for a brief time, but went our separate ways. I then discovered I was pregnant and so we agreed to co-parent our daughter, Aila. After she was born we were spending time as a family and got back together and were very happy. Unfortunately, Aila passed away at 10 weeks from SIDS, and so we have worked hard to get through that experience together and have grown stronger and honoured our promise to her that we would stay together.

We married on January 18, 2020 at St Mark’s Uniting Church Mornington on what would have been Aila’s second birthday. We held the ceremony at St Mark’s Uniting Church as that is where we farewelled our daughter.

The groom is a very funky dresser and his favourite brand is Jack London – so his suit and jacket were from there. His shoes were chosen to stand out and match his suit.

I already had a dress, but I wasn’t happy with it. Then I walked into Bariano and knew that the dress I saw there was my dream dress.

I also had my late grandmother’s engagement ring pinned inside my dress.

I walked down the aisle to ‘Here With Me’ by Dido.

We wanted our ceremony to be a special acknowledgement of what Wayne and I have been through to make it to our wedding day, and also honour Aila and other special people who couldn’t be there with us. Our readings included a Native American prayer to remember those not with us and a reading called ‘Desiderata’.

Mark from One White Day was our photographer on the day and he was excellent. We hardly noticed he was there and the finished product was amazing.

The moment we went to inspect The Cloisters at Toorak College we knew it was where we would have our reception. The theme was shabby chic. I collected all the ornaments and decorations from an op shop and made lots of tea cup candles for the tables. The atmosphere was one of celebration. We also included lots of acknowledgement of Aila and those special people, such as my father and Wayne’s mum, who are no longer with us.

As you can see from the big bridal party, there were people from all areas of our life involved. The children who were involved all belonged to my bridesmaids.

The things that made our wedding special was that it was Aila’s second birthday, so there was both celebration, happiness, hope and some sadness. Also, my sister Carla (my maid of honour) and her partner travelled from Vancouver via Ireland to be there for the day.

It was great to see how all my little homemade touches were noticed by people. Having kids there with a face painter, tepee and a balloon artist was great too.

My jewellery, designed by Precious Touch Jewellery, had Aila’s finger print on it (ring and bracelet).

We loved that all our friends and family, who have supported us through the tough times, were there to celebrate what a special union it was.

Alina and Wayne’s wedding video by Cliff Elliot

Ms Floral Says: Thank you Alina for sharing your story with us. What a beautiful wedding to celebrate your union, as well as remember your precious Aila. The Polka Dot team all wish you the very best in your new chapter as husband and wife.



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