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Emily & Corey

A 38 degree day in March, in Melbourne, is certainly not what this gorgeous couple expected on their Autumn wedding day! However, they embraced the heat to say ‘I do’ in a special ceremony. Bride Emily shares all the details and Melbourne moments that were captured by talent, photographer Kas Richards. She even breaks all the rules to let us in on their best kept secret…

For years and years we told everyone that we ‘met in a bar in Geelong’. Corey and I put together this story, which we recited every time the question of how we met was asked. The name of the bar, the time we met, what his pick up line was, what the weather was like that day, what we were wearing, what we were drinking. Well guys, truth is, Corey and I didn’t meet at a bar in Geelong. We met somewhere that starts with ‘T’ and ends in ‘inder’…but pretend we never told you that!

My dress was made and designed by Jack Sullivan. I was lucky that Jack had flown down from Brisbane for a visit at my local bridal boutique. As soon as he pulled out the ‘Amanda’ dress, I knew it was the one. We worked away on alterations and changes over the next few months until it was a perfect fit. On the day I felt amazing in all it’s beaded, sequinned glory! I tossed up for weeks about adding sleeves to the gown, however when the universe gave us a 38 degree wedding day, I was very glad I made the choice to leave them off!

Corey and the boys wore suits made and tailored by the Menz Club. Corey was adamant, for months and months, that he wouldn’t wear a bow tie on the day. Little did he know, a bride always gets her way! In the end he was so happy with the way all the suits turned out and even admitted that the suit and bow tie made him feel a million bucks.

Our Wedding was on the 2nd of March 2019 – and it was 38 degrees, might I add! We had a traditional Catholic Ceremony, which was held at St Mary’s Church in Ascot Vale followed by a formal reception at Alto Event Space.

This was the church where I went to Primary School, so it held many fond childhood memories. Faith is very important to our families, especially mine, so we wanted to marry in a place that had importance to us both. We also think the inside of the church is spectacular and one of the best in our area. We are so happy with the way our ceremony photos turned out. The brick walls of the church also allowed a cool welcome relief for us and our guests from the 38 degree heat outside. Corey and I hope to one day baptise our children in the same church.

We loved our entire wedding gallery, however our favourite photos would have to be the candid shots of our bridal party. There is also one of Corey and I standing in the arch/door way of church ruins. This church is in Moonee Ponds and unfortunately burned down some time ago. It was the church my Mum and Dad married in 30 years ago! An iconic wedding photo from their day is a shot of the two of them standing in that same archway. We thought it would be pretty special to replicate it and we were so happy with the way the photos turned out.

Our stylist Paula (The Small Things Co) was able to recommend an amazing florist to bring our floral dreams to life – Viv from Flos Botanical Studio worked absolute magic! From our bridal bouquets to the table arrangement, every single flower was of the highest quality. We went with bold pinks and purples for our flowers. We also got Viv to construct a greenery installation on our reception ceiling which was made of 40 metres of leafy garland. Ah-mazing!

Early on in the wedding planning process we were looking at having a HUGE bridal party – literally think my big fat hillbilly wedding style. In the end we chose 3 of our closest friends to have stand beside us as we made it official. I had my sister and my 2 best friends and Corey had his brother and his 2 best friends. We count our lucky stars to have such amazing friends and family and it was a tough decision to only go with 3 each. However, we got our loved ones involved in our day in other ways, which made it all the more special.

When we first met with The Small Things Co about managing and styling our day, our brief was luxe, bold and structured. We think the brief was more than met! We wanted our wedding day to be a true reflection of our love and individual personalities, so it was always going to be loud, modern and fun! Corey and I honestly could not wipe the smiles off our faces all day. From our first glance from opposite ends of the aisle, to sharing in our first meal together as husband and wife surrounded by our friends and family, the whole day was an absolute dream come true.

A month before our big day my Pop unfortunately passed away from cancer. He had been sick with Alzheimer’s for quite some time however he had been recently diagnosed with cancer in his final few months. We honoured Pop, and a number of other family members and friends touched by cancer, through our wedding favours.

Corey and I made a donation to the Cancer Council of Victoria on behalf of each of our guests. In return we were able to gift each of our guests a customised card detailing the donation details along with a silver daffodil lapel. It was so touching to see so many of our guests with the lapels on their suit jackets or dresses throughout the night. Our favours and the meaning behind them were one of my favourite details of the day. If any other couple are struggling with favour/bonbonniere ideas, I would recommend looking into making a donation to a charity or organisation that is close to their heart on their guest’s behalf.

Our photographer Kas Richards waved her magic wand and worked magic all damn day! Our photo gallery is such a beautiful keepsake and we constantly go through it together reliving all the memories. Kas, and her second photographer Selena, were amazing on the day. They made us feel comfortable and calm in the nervy moments and also boosted our excitement and made the process fun after the formalities of the ceremony were all over.

We had an amazing Wedding Stylist/Planner in Paula (and Tom!) from the Small Things Co, who were an absolute pleasure to work with. We came to Paula with a rough idea of how we wanted our wedding to look and she worked wonders to make our whole styling the stuff of dreams! Paula was also able to recommend some incredible suppliers.

From stationary (special shoutout to the amazing Demi from Petite Paper Co), to florals, to linen hire, candles, cake, lighting and entertainment.. we didn’t have to worry about a thing. I honestly think TSTC was the best investment we made for our day and we would recommend them one million times over. They made the whole process so simple, stress free and most importantly, fun! To be honest, we’re actually super sad it’s over! Paula and Tom went above and beyond for us and we could not have been happier with their overall service, professionalism, knowledge and support.

Asked if there was any advice to give other couples who are planning their wedding, Emily admitted – Just do you! Don’t try and please anyone else, just do you and what makes you both happy. It’s your day, make it yours.

Ms Zebra Says: We wish both Corey and Emily the brightest and happiest of future’s together! Thank you for sharing your wonderful day with us!

Credits

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.

Lindsay & Brad

From the beginning, this wedding had elegance, thoughtful detail and stunning Western Australian views. Childhood sweethearts, Lindsay and Brad were captured by Simone Addison Photography as they enjoyed a love filled, relaxed day with their family and friends. Think native florals, champagne colours and beautiful scenery as the gorgeous couple laughed and danced the night away. The glowing bride recounts the day that was and the special moments in between.

We were childhood sweethearts – the couple that have been best friends throughout high school and finally became a couple in our final year! We got married after our 10 year anniversary.

Our flowers were from Little Blossom Co. and my bouquet was made up of one large protea, two smaller proteas, native greenery, white/ blush roses and blushing brides. It was so beautiful.

When finding the perfect dress, Lindsay took her Mum, Mother in Law and bridesmaids for breakfast one morning and spent the day searching for the perfect wedding dress.

We looked at 3 different stores. I found the dress I had always dreamt of at the last store! Champagne in colour, thick lace, long train and long veil. The dress was strapless but I designed sleeves to go around the top of my arms to look like they were connected to the dress. The dress was amazing!

In our wedding party, my maid of honour was my sister, Jacinta and two friends, Madeleine and Erin. Brad chose his best mate for his best man (naturally!), Zak, Xavier and Sam. Our flower girl was our niece Ellie and our page boy was our nephew Zachary.

We picked Sacred Heart Church as we love the area and the church building itself. Core Cider House was somewhere Brad and I loved to go while the sun was shining for a cider/picnic on the grass. The food is great there and the staff are always friendly.

I walked down the aisle to ‘I won’t give up’ by Jason Mraz. Our ceremony was relaxed – just as we wanted and we included readings which referred to love and us as a couple.

Our favourite photo’s are definitely the photos of Brad and I walking through a green field with beautiful bright flowers around us. Simone Addison our photographer was the loveliest lady! So easy to get along with and made our day so special. She captured the most perfect photos. We highly recommend her to everyone!

Some of our favourite details of the day were the flowers and photos! The reception layout and ceremony turned out to be perfect and of course, the limousine ride was SO much fun!!

Little Blossom Co and Mai Tai Design and Stylist were such stand out vendors. Both ladies went over and above what we had expected. They were fabulous throughout the planning process and made the lead up to our wedding day and the day after so easy.

I will always remember our friends and family who did speeches at the wedding. They made Brad and I laugh so much and cry too! Our DJ, DJ Phil also made the night for our guests and us. He was lively, fun and uplifting!

One of our favourite details was the wooden arbour behind bridal table – the flower arrangements were stunning and the Edison ‘LOVE’ light letters for the dance floor were such a great detail.

But mostly the best part of the day was having our guests there (closest friends and family) to celebrate with. Everything ran perfectly to plan, the flowers, bridal party and amazing vendors made it such a special celebration for us!

Our first dance was to ‘XO’ by John Mayer. Slow, sway and ballroom!

A final word and advice to any future couples, simply relax and enjoy every minute – the day really does goes so fast!!

Ms Zebra Says: We wish this gorgeous couple a big congratulations and all the best for your new life together as husband and wife! Thank you for sharing your incredible day with us.

Polka Dot Dream Team...

The below wedding vendors made this magic happen and are an approved part of the Polka Dot Directory. Visit their portfolios to learn more and enquire about their services!

Credits

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.

  • Alterations
  • Helen's Creative Alterations
  • Ceremony Officiant
  • Father Greg
  • Rental Furniture
  • Vintage Light Letter Co.

Samantha & Christen

There was not a breath of wind on a stunning Autumn day when Samantha and Christen’s family and friends gathered to watch them say ‘I do’! With enviable backdrops throughout the incredible Highfield Historic House Estate, Samantha was able to live out her childhood dream and married her Prince! After a surprise proposal shoot in Lake Wanaka, the couple couldn’t imagine anyone else capturing their day than Katrina Elton of Imagine Images NZ. Reflecting on their gorgeous day, Bride Samantha shares all the ins and outs of their dream wedding!

I think everyone dreams of a fairy tale wedding and everyone’s picture of what this looks like is often going to be different. This is the story of our fairy tale wedding and the important moments along the way that made it so truly memorable. So where better to start than at the beginning?!

Tasmania has been home for both Christen and I all of our lives. We both spent most of our childhood on the North West coast of Tasmania and despite spending time on the mainland for work and study, we both returned to Tasmania as it was always truly home. We fell in love during our first date for coffee in Salamanca when we each gave cheeky first smiles at each other from across the table. Naturally, coffee turned into a 12-hour marathon date, from cafes to beaches, museums; restaurants and movies and finishing of course with plans for the second date.

One and a half years later we got engaged at picturesque Lake Wanaka in New Zealand, whilst on a ski holiday. Christen had planned the whole thing as a surprise and after walking along the lake for a while he said my full name, got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. Of course I said YES!

All the while, a sneaky photographer hidden in the trees was shooting away, capturing some of the most amazing images of a very special moment. Once home we went straight back into our busy lives. We were working full time, selling one house, while starting to build another and now we had to add planning our wedding in just 8 months!

I started the day getting dressed at Salt Hair, Stanley where we were in the excellent care of Bek, our hairstylist, who provided a platter and champagne for us ladies to relax with. Our make up artist Shannon Armstrong met us here and did a stunning job with all our make up keeping it all very natural.

I couldn’t thank Salt Hair Stanley enough for looking after us enough on the morning of our wedding! Bek was a wonderful host and styled our hair perfectly. And together with our talented makeup artist, you both did a perfect job with our hair and makeup.

Deciding on a venue for us was an easy choice. We were both from North West Tasmania and growing up I had always dreamed of getting married at Highfield Historic House in Stanley after making many visits during my childhood.

Choosing the photographer was even easier! Katrina from Imagine Images NZ had done such a stunning job with our engagement photos she was our first and only choice. Luckily Katrina and her partner Jedd were just as excited as us to travel to Tasmania and continue capturing our story in a state known for the similar stunning natural beauty to that of New Zealand’s countryside.

Naturally we turned to many of our married friends for advice and found a majority spoke of the lack of enjoyment in the lead up to their wedding due to the amount of stress and organisation required in planning it. This was not the experience we wanted with our wedding!

From the outset I was very keen to employ wedding planners as we were getting married 400km away from where we both lived and the task of planning a wedding was daunting on top of our already busy lives. It took a little bit more time for Christen to come around to the idea of paying someone to do what he thought we could do ourselves. But as the saying goes.. “happy wife, happy life” so he sceptically agreed, and he was quickly proved wrong.

Our wedding planners Ash and Brad Bespoke had access to styling elements, their organisation skills and their industry contacts meant we were able to enjoy the excitement and lead up to our wedding without stress. They had a plan for all situations including wet weather and dealt with any issues in the lead up to the wedding, as well as on the big day before they even arose.

Ash and Brad Bespoke were so easy to work with, their styling was unique and tailored to us as a couple. Thanks to our planners the wedding day far exceeded our expectations and cannot be described as anything other than perfect!!

It was at 2pm on the 13th of April when I married the love of my life. It was a sunny day with barely a breath of wind.

The feel of the day we wanted to achieve was to be relaxed and fun. We had lawn games and an outside bar, vintage couches coupled with hay bales and festoon lighting made for the perfect setting on Highfields grounds. One of the elements we had picked to spend money on was in the floral work.

This was styled by our wonderfully talented wedding planners. As soon as you saw the bouquets, arbour, reception and the gorgeous floral centre piece it took your breath away. Our colour theme and furniture were suggested by Ash and Brad and worked perfectly with the setting.

The day went by so fast, but was truly memorable for us and our guests, with 3 main memorable moments. The first memorable moment was the use of personalised vows which made the ceremony more unique and heartfelt. This made our ceremony feel individual to us and meaningful to our guests who had travelled to celebrate with us.

Secondly was the photography. From our experience, it is really important to find a photographer that you connect with. This will ensure you feel natural and comfortable with them as they will ultimately be the one responsible for capturing the memories that will last with you and your guests for a lifetime. Our photos around the town and on the beach with our very talented photographer were just stunning and we had so much fun capturing them. It was also an opportunity to have some time with just myself and my husband to soak everything in before the nights events took place.

Last but not least, was our first dance. We hadn’t exactly planned it other than the song and the location. It made for such a beautiful moment as it happened effortlessly while everyone was relaxing outside under the stars and the festoon lighting.

It was magical when, like a choreographed flash dance, all our guests naturally joined in at the same time and everyone was waltzing outside under the stars. There was a moment where the two of us looked at each other and then around at the crowd all dancing and we simply smiled at each other!

Our wedding day was perfect from the styling to the food and photography. None of this would have been possible without the wonderful people who helped us a long the way. We have to say a huge thank to Ash and Brad Bespoke. Their planning, styling and organisational skills absolutely blew us away.

Our wedding photographer Katrina Elton and her partner Jedd from Imagine Images NZ, you have given us the most stunning photos to look back on and we will be forever grateful for how beautifully you captured our wedding day.

Our caterers, Hugo’s Catering, dished up exceptional food that all the guests were raving about.

I was beyond ecstatic with the timeless elegance of my wedding gown. I was truly thrilled with it! Plus, we can’t thank Highfield House enough for their stunning grounds, facilities and barn. All of our vendors had a hand in making our dream wedding come true and for that we say a huge thank you!

The single piece of advice that both of us would give to any couple planning a marriage is to hire wedding planners, particularly those of the standard of Ash & Brad Bespoke. It allows you to relax and enjoy one of the most important days of your life and from our experience a skilled planner can even save you money or at least extract more value for money.

Ms Zebra Says: We wish this gorgeous couple the absolute best in their new lives together as husband and wife! Congratulations!!

Credits

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.

  • Catering
  • Hugo's Catering
  • Ceremony Officiant
  • Pastor Shaun White