An intimate garden wedding today sprinkled with sweet Japanese touches. The outside venue with the background of gum trees adds a breeziness and freshness to the photos by Raoul Tackelburg.
Yuichi and I met at university in Japan, 5 years ago. Yuichi proposed at a beautiful spa resort near Mt Fuji – it was so romantic!
My white lace dress was from Collette Dinnigan. It was the first shop I went into, and when I tried on my dress and they placed a veil in my hair I started to cry! My sister laughed at me as it was such a surprise – the first dress I tried on was ‘the one’! My peep-toe shoes were from Alan Pinkus.
I handmade boutonnieres and wrist corsages from vintage white silk kimono fabric in Japan in the months leading up to the wedding. They gave a Japanese touch for the wedding, and also helped to avoid any wilting from real flowers in the summer heat!
On the day of our wedding, I got up early and went up to my sister’s house to get ready while Yuichi got ready at the hotel. When Yuichi saw me off, we decided not to kiss so that it would really feel like our ‘first kiss’ at the ceremony (first for the day anyway!). It was so exciting, and certainly made it that much more special!
Once I arrived at my sister’s house, we set to work on my hair and makeup. My sister also made the final touches to the white silk tulle veil that she had made.
We wanted to have a relaxed outdoor wedding, and have the ceremony and reception in walking distance from each other. Centennial Parklands was perfect! The ceremony chairs, white wrought iron signing table setting and champagne flutes were all provided by Frolic Events.
My Dad walked me down the aisle, and as we got closer and could hear the music, I had to stop and ask him for a tissue. As I had been living in Japan for 8 years, I hadn’t seen many of my friends in such a long time. It was such a wonderful feeling to see everyone again!
Our wonderful celebrant was Pauline Fawkner. Yuichi and I had personalised our vows with help from Pauline, and both our eldest sisters did a reading titled “Marriage Joins Two People in the Circle of Its Love” by Edmund O’Neill. Yuichi’s sister translated the reading into Japanese, so we could absorb the meaning of the words in both our languages.
I had planned to make my own flowers the day before the wedding, but there were so many things to do and I was running out of time. In between chores we ran into Tulipanna – they were so friendly and had such beautiful flowers, I jumped at their offer to make my posy and reception flowers! I carefully tied the locket around my posy as my ‘something old’ and carried a delicate blue handkerchief as my ‘something blue’, which had both been passed down to my mum from her great-grandmother.
My friend delivered Strawbellini sparkling wine from her strawberry farm as a special gift for the toast after the ceremony.
Music was provided by Sydney Wedding Music. I walked down the aisle to ‘The Mission’, and Jane Hart sang ‘Just Like a Star’ by Corinne Bailey Rae during the signing. I wish I could go back to those moments and listen to the music again!
After the ceremony, our photographer Raoul Tackelburg whisked us away in his car for some photos in the pine forest in Centennial Park, and then to Paddington across the road for some photos on the beautiful old tree-lined streets. Yuichi and I loved having this time just the two of us!
There was just a light breeze, but my veil was so fine that it drifted up as we were walking and caught on the tree. I could feel it catch and said “Yuichi!” and he came quickly to try and gently lift it off. Meanwhile Raoul was snapping with the camera and saying “Great! Hold it there!” and I was thinking my sister is going to kill me! Amazingly there wasn’t any damage and we got some great candid shots:)
While Yuichi and I were having photos, everyone enjoyed the sparkling wine and chatting by the Lily Pond and then walked up to Centennial Parklands Dining restaurant for the lunch reception. The restaurant is such a beautiful venue, and as we had an intimate wedding we decided to have a group booking using half of the restaurant, rather than exclusive use. This actually suited us perfectly, as we weren’t planning on having many of the traditional wedding elements such as speeches, dancing or a wedding cake. We had a gorgeous menu, toasts from our parents, a fun quiz about the bride and groom, and lots of time to relax and catch up with our families and friends.
We really wanted to create a fun and relaxed environment where the kids could enjoy the wedding and look back on the day with good memories. We made kids goodie bags including a white DIY puzzle, notebook, pens and cut-out books all from Muji in Japan. We personalised each item with printed stickers and messages, and also included muesli bars which turned out to be a real hit for their hungry tummies when they arrived at the reception! Our deep ocean blue and mint vintage design, customised and downloaded from Wedding Chicks, was carried throughout our DIY invitations, place cards, kids goodie bags, table numbers, and bride and groom signs.
As we had a lunch reception, we made photobooks for each table instead of a slideshow.
The food was divine – everyone loved the pavlova! It was quite funny, as we had by coincidence had pavlova for Christmas Day and Boxing Day as well, so in the end Yuichi’s family thought Australians eat pavlova every day of the week! This one might have been the winner though!
After the reception, Yuichi and I rode away in a Mercedes convertible from HF Wedding Cars.
We are so grateful to our families for all their help on our wedding day. We didn’t have a wedding planner, so we couldn’t have done it without them! Particularly a big thank you to my brothers-in-law who coordinated everything in the morning and also MC’d at the reception. Thank you!
Ms Polka Dot says: Kate and Yuichi’s charming wedding is such a great example of intertwining two cultures in a meaningful yet restrained way. Their happiness is so plain for everyone to see! Congratulations Kate and Yuichi on your wedding and thank you for sharing your day with us.
Photography by Raoul Tackelburg
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