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a glass of bubbles with amanda
Tell us about you and your business/blog?

I run a travel blog at NotABallerina.com which turned ten years old recently – the first time I’ve ever stuck at anything for a whole decade! It’s all about travelling in a way which helps us learn about ourselves and others. I’ve just launched Travel Journal School as part of the blog to help travel lovers create really fabulous memories – written and more – of their trips. As a complement to all of that, I run a social media and blogging consultancy business here in Perth, and run workshops largely for creatives and solo business people.

Tell us about your wedding?

I got married in southern Germany in 2006. My new German husband and I were about to leave Germany to live in my hometown of Perth, so we decided that his family in Germany should get to be at our wedding before we abandoned them! We had a civil ceremony in a very picturesque town hall, and in the interests of keeping it simple had a barbecue lunch afterwards.

Amanda Kendle town hall and new married couple

It was perfect – except that, despite being the middle of summer, it rained. People told me that was definitely good luck. The following day, when the last couple of family members were able to join us, we had a party at my mother-in-law’s house, and in usual German style the catering was amazing.

When we moved to Perth a month later, we recreated the wedding for the Australian side of the family – it was great to get two wears out of my wedding dress!

If you could change one thing, what would it be?

I would change the budget: we had just left our jobs to move to Australia and couldn’t afford to spend much. I wouldn’t have wanted it fancier, but if we’d been billionaires I would have flown all my family and friends from different parts of the world in to Germany to celebrate with us.

Amanda Kendle Civil ceremony in town hall
Who are your favourite vendors?

When we had our “repeat wedding” back in Australia we held our party at my sister’s house (given that we were still homeless!). She owns the Code Bloom florist store here in Perth so of course everything looked gorgeous.

Who was your photographer?

Ironically, my husband is a photographer, and so he took all the photos that he wasn’t in … and my brother-in-law and sister-in-law took the rest. Weirdly, my favourite photograph is one of us coming down the steps of the town hall, and you can see a bald guy coming along the paving nearby. A few moments later we bumped into him, and he was someone my husband had studied with years before and hadn’t seen since. I love those kind of stories and didn’t mind at all that it interrupted our wedding!

What advice do you have for others planning their wedding?
Keep it simple. I was honestly glad to have a few excuses to keep our wedding small and family-only, and I still have wonderful memories of it. I think it’s easy to get caught up in the idea of making it something for everyone, when really it’s probably only important that the bride and groom have a day that is special to them.

>Images via Amanda Kendle and Jan Augustin

>Ms Zigzag says: I love how relaxed and in the moment Amanda seemed during her wedding. It definitely helps that her husband and family are creatives too, and could take over some of the roles that are usually carried out by vendors. A simple yet meaningful day – perfect! 

Kellie and Jye’s colourful Easter Long Weekend wedding is so full of romance and joy and the celebration was a true reflection of them as a couple. Kellie and Jye made sure to include everyone- both their own dog, their nieces and nephews right through to older family members in their day.

Kellie has some wise advice for our engaged couples: “Do it your way and make it as genuine as possible to who you are as a couple. I think it’s easy to get carried away with the whole excitement of organising such a big occasion. I just made sure I stayed true to us. And the usual piece of advice – savor every minute because yes, it does go by so fast.”

Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding074
Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding076
Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding078
Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding079
Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding080
Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding081
Colourful Easter Weekend Wedding082

Sammy & Simon

I could not be more excited to share Sammy and Simon’s Sri Lankan tropical and colourful wedding with you today. Let’s just say, there was gold king coconuts, gold painted pineapples, a seafood BBQ feast prepared by the bride’s father, the groom’s wedding ring handmade by the bride (say what?!), and fireworks! Yep, fireworks! This wedding screams joy and sandy barefoot good times. I won’t give anymore away… just trust me, read on and enjoy every colourful, happy moment! 

We decided to tie the knot on the south coast of Sri Lanka. My love affair with the island runs deep – as I grew up there, in paradise. And Simon too fell in love with the magical isle of Serendipity (as it is known), so it was the perfect place to say ‘i do’. We held the ceremony on a beautiful stretch of beach, followed by a tropical island party on the breathtaking red cliffs of Mirissa.

It was a very simple and homemade affair. My dad did all the food – which was a delightful seafood BBQ, celebrating Sri Lanka’s amazing cuisine. And we served local beer, local rum punches and plenty of coconuts to keep everyone hydrated and dancing until the sun came up.
I adore tropical flowers like gingers and birds of paradise, and we had it all, including gold painted pineapples, gold king coconuts and piñatas. It was so eye-poppingly colourful, and a reflection of our spirit.

I wore a simple Mira Zwillinger beaded dress that I bought at a sample sale for a bargain! And my bridesmaids wore gold and bronze sequinned dresses I found at vintage markets.

The boys kept it simple with white shirts and navy trousers, but Simon’s tropical jacket was my favourite!

I walked down the aisle to the lovely ‘Mary’s Song’ by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis. Each of my bridesmaids took a niece or nephew and headed down the beach aisle. I wanted to walk with both my mum and dad, and I am so glad that I did. It was such an overwhelming honour to have them both by my side. After the ceremony, we walked back down the aisle to ‘Sexual Healing’ by the Hot 8 brass band.

The ceremony was extremely moving. We had a lot of traditional touches like the tying of our souls together with a white thread blessed by a local monk. And then pouring water over our fingers to cleanse our past and prepare us for our future. I also handmade Simon’s wedding ring after a jewellery course, which made it particularly meaningful.

Our guests were all whisked off in a tuk tuk procession to the cliffs where we held our reception. We arrived a short time later to the insane sounds of traditional Kandyan dancers. They drummed, danced and sang as we followed behind to cheers!

Our first dance was to ‘Can’t Nobody Love You ‘by the Zombies. Perfect for us… fun, meaningful and we danced circles around each other with no prior practice.

I have a few standout memories that really made the day for me. Watching the fireworks together, turning to face the crowd as we said our vows, and seeing 70 glorious, beaming faces looking back at us, having a moment during the reception together where we took it all in, and just couldn’t believe that all our nearest and dearest had made the trip to Sri Lanka for us. My dad’s speech was also a highlight, where he revealed that he had planted an orange tree at the spot that Simon asked him for my hand.


My parting advice for brides-to-be… You are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime, so start the party as you mean to go on. With good times, no drama and surrounded by loved ones. It’s obvious, but it’s not worth sweating the small stuff. Just go with the flow of the day – and you will end up having a much better time than if you try to micromanage. In the lead up to the event, divide tasks up between you and your partner.  We had ‘Marital Mondays’ which is the only time we discussed anything wedding related, so that planning didn’t take over our lives!

We had a super 8 video made of the day by the wonderful Peacock Pictures – it’s a really lovely, nostalgic memento of a day we will never forget.

Ms Zigzag says: If you read my intro above, you know how I feel about this wedding! I hope every couple embarking on their own special day can take something positive away from this post and enjoy their wedding as much as Sammy and Simon did! 

Samantha’s Bio: I am a freelance TV producer, raised in Sri Lanka, Iraq and London, and I have settled in Sydney for now. My childhood was spent dodging civil wars, and my parents decided to move to the UK to escape the chaos. I am extremely fortunate to have met some amazing folk around the globe through my work, and I love nothing more than to tell their stories.  I run my own wedding film business – peacockpictures.co.

I recently got married in Sri Lanka, to the loveliest man with the best ginger beard you have ever seen. I love to wear bows in my hair.

Photographer: Ceylon Photography / Cinematographer: Peacock Pictures / Wedding Planner: Galle Events / Bride's Dress: Mira Zwillinger / Bride's Shoes: Forever Soles / Groom's Attire: MJ Bale / Bridesmaid Shoes: Forever Soles / Floral Accessories: Shirohana Flowers / Ceremony Venue: Casa Colombo Collection / Ceremony Officiant: Henri Tatham / Reception Venue: Red Cliffs, Mirissa / Musicians: Drew Jones, The Maple Jacks