How did you meet your (now) husband? Through mutual friends, we were just friends but started dating after I returned from living overseas
How long have you been together? 5 years
Do you have a proposal story? We were in New York for Andrew’s best friend’s wedding and on the final evening I saw an antique ring I liked in a shop. Andrew ducked out during dinner to purchase the ring and proposed to me later that night, between 11th and 12th st, which are our lucky numbers
What was your wedding date? 11th October 2014
Location (Ceremony and Reception)
2. What made you choose there? It’s one of my favorite places in Sydney and Andrew wanted our wedding overlooking the harbour
3. How did you find it? How was the weather on the day? Fabulous…great big blue skies and balmy
What made you decide to get married on this particular date? 11 is my lucky number and the gardens look their best in high spring
The Wedding Details
Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? I saw a production of Mid Summer’s night dream when I was young and have been drawn to the gardens ever since. I wanted include rare and exotic flowers and foliage in the wedding as the function of the Botanic Gardens is to preserve and showcase them. The deco reference is for my love of anything Art Nouveau or Art Deco…and my engagement ring is an Art Nouveau antique.
Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Yes, I hand made all the place settings. They were tiny cork bottles with little sprigs of Australian natives inside. They were tied with a ribbon and had a leaf shaped tag attached. We also just printed our own table plan and table numbers.
1. Bridesmaids –Maid of honour- Cheryl, my cousin. Bridesmaids- Amanda, Sophie and Carla, my best friends
2. Groomsmen –Best Man- Niels, Best friend. Groomsmen- Nick (brother) Michael and Ben best friends
Wedding Gown (the most important part!)
What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I had a very definate idea about the style I wanted. I saw the Elvina dress on the Karen Willis Holmes website and was convinced it was the one.
Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? In magazines and online
How many gowns did you try? So many, I wanted to be sure I had the one.
Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington Karen Willis Holmes store. Hannah Kate was wonderful. So professional, made me feel special and went above and beyond to work to my tight timeframe
What did you especially like about your gown? The unusual pattern in the beading was like nothing else I saw. The style was perfect for my petite frame and the train was big enough to create a statement without being too much. Was also pretty comfortable!
Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Forever New…silk dresses for $200 each. Very happy
Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? The groom wore a bespoke suit made by tailor Sam Hazelton, from JH Cutler Sydney, and a handmade bow tie from Le Noued Papillon, Vaucluse. The groomsmen were in M & J Bale
What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore my Tiffany key that Andrew bought me on our first trip to New York. I also had Earrings and bracelets from Zjoosh, Balgowlah
Where did you get your shoes from? Shoes of Prey, designed by me especially for the day
Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Veil from Karen Willis Holmes, glad Hannah talked me into the longer one
What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Pinterest! A lot! Magazines, I made a book with images I liked out of magazines so I could take it along to supplier meetings
What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t rush, try and have an idea of styles you like before you go. Leave plenty of time and only shop with people that understand your vision and who will be honest
Something Old? My engagement ring
Something New? My earrings
Something Borrowed? A clutch from a bridesmaid
Something Blue? Sapphire’s in a ring my grandparents gave me
Florist – Sweet Violets, Lindfield, Jan was amazing and accommodated every quirky and creative need I had. I arrived with a list of unusual and exotic foliage and flowers and Jan went out of her way to turn my vision into a reality
Photographer – Captured By Pavel, Yana and Pavel made us feel comfortable and captured so much of the wedding without us noticing. The photos were natural and captured the emotion and fun of the day. Their pricing was fantastic as well.
Music – The White Tree Band, we had reservations on whether to have a band or DJ, we totally nailed it with the band. The guys were great and catered to everybody’s taste. We had loads of positive feedback on them.
First Dance – Recording of Nick Caves, Into My Arms.
MC – Uncle Philip (Andrews Uncle) really got the evening off to a great start and maintained the enthusiasm throughout the night.
Celebrant – Janet Lomax, Wedding’s I Do. Awesome celebrant with a great sense of humour and felt a real connection from the start
Stationery – Giant Invitations, online Melbourne. Saved us heaps and we got exactly the same stuff as a store had offered us for a 3rd of the price!!
Menu – Botanic Gardens Restaurant, we had a fixed seasonal alternate menu. We had 3 courses which (we consider ourselves foodies) were lovely and had plenty of positive feedback.
Cake – Sparkle Cupcake Bakery, Surry Hills, Kathryn, the owner, was at a supplier night at the Gardens one evening. The cake was delivered on a stand. Was delicious and great value
Bombonieres – The place settings acted as our gifts.
Hair – Letitia Booth of Jo Bellamy, Mossman, Letitia is super talented, she helped develop the style and was also my colorist. On the day she sewed my hair into place to stay put!
Make up – Katie Goerlach, a friend who freelances as a makeup artist, now has her own family business specializing in weddings called ‘Quaint essentials’ She helped me look and feel like a star!
Wedding Bands – Stedmans Fine Jewellery, Lane Cove
Extra features – 1000 Stars provided a fairy light canopy at the venue. We used “Wedding Nights” for our outdoor seating, carpet runner and signing table in the Gardens. We also hired props from Ashdown & Bee.
Other – I had a suite at the Intercontinental in Sydney the night before, the staff were amazing for the entire stay, accommodating every need and every guest over the time I was there. The views were amazing and we were able to get plenty of pics of the bridal party, family and friends during this time.
The groom stayed at the Pullman Grand at Circular Quay. Again the staff were superb, there were fabulous views and great pics were taken.
As part of the reception package we had 1 night at the Sheraton on the Park in Sydney. We had a lovely suite and it was a great way to top off a fantastic day/evening.