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Monique & Hugh's Elegant Country Wedding

Posted on 02 Oct, 2015
Monique & Hugh's Elegant Country Wedding


How did you meet your (now) husband? I was living in Auckland, Hugh was living in Australia. Hugh was back in New Zealand for the weekend for the Christchurch Cup races. It was my third year going to the cup with my friend from Christchurch Daniel. He always joked it would be a nice South Island boy that swept me off my feet and that weekend he introduced me to his friend Hugh. We had Daniel as the MC at the wedding.

How long have you been together? Eight years in November.

Do you have a proposal story? We were out for dinner on a Wednesday night and Hugh dropped to the knee at the table. It took me completely by surprise as he is quite shy and I never thought it would be in public. He later said that he had wanted to do it at home with just the two of us before we left for dinner but I was rushing him out the door so he didn’t get the chance.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? Friday April 10th 2015


Church ceremony – St Patrick’s Catholic Cathedral in Albury

Wedding Reception – Waddingtons at Kergunyah

What made you choose there? We had found Waddingtons a few years before after taking a Sunday drive there for lunch one weekend. It sits in one of most beautiful valleys in the area, the setting is so stunning and the decor simple and rustic, and the food is completely amazing every time. We didn’t even think of anywhere else.

How was the weather on the day? We were so lucky with the weather. The week before and weekend of Easter we had rain and horrible days, but we had a perfect Albury blue-sky sunny day, just what we had hoped for.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? Autumn is the most settled time of year for the weather here. It also is when our work season starts to slow down slightly. It was the Friday after Easter, so as it was school holidays it meant both our families could all come for Easter and spend the week.



The Wedding Details

Theme? Gold and cream. Elegant and classic with the beautiful country background.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Lots of Bridal Magazines, the odd idea off Pintrest. It can easily become too much and fog your mind with ideas.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?  My two sisters – Shanell Le Loux and Yvette Gregory

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Hugh’s two very old school friends –Lachie Campbell and Stuart Mackenzie

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Lucy Tunley – Hugh’s niece and Goddaughter. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes?  As much as I like clothes, I don’t like traipsing shops and I wanted to make the most of my time when I got to the city. I did a lot of online research. I looked through the bridal magazines and found labels which I liked, then went online to look at their websites and saw what other options they had, plus the pricing. On the KAREN WILLIS HOLMES website, I found about 9 different dresses and styles which I liked and wanted to try to see which style suited me.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Bridal magazines.

How many gowns did you try? KAREN WILLIS HOLMES was the first place I booked and went to. I only tried on three gowns before I was basically sure, I was in love with the top half, and then when we decided to change the skirt to the fuller one, I knew it was perfect. After that we went to one other place and I hated everything, Mum said it was a waste of time because I was already sure.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? KAREN WILLIS HOLMES Paddington.

What did you especially like about your gown? It was perfect. The lace was stunning, the skirt was the perfect fullness, it photographed beautifully and it was so extremely comfortable. The whole day I didn’t think once about it being too tight or not being able to sit down.


Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Jenny Packham ordered online from Debenhams UK.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Hugh’s tux from Calibre and groomsmen tux hired.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? We got my sisters the same pair of Swarovski earrings to go with their dresses. For the boys and the MC, I ordered each of them a pair of cufflinks with their initials engraved. Hugh thought he was going to wear those ones on the day, but I had ordered him another pair as a wedding gift, which had his family crest.

We got Lucy a little Swarovski necklace to wear as well.

Where did you get your shoes from? Lucy Choi London ordered off NetAPorter.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? KAREN WILLIS HOLMES Veil.

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Remember it is over so quickly. Don’t try to rush things on the day, make sure you allow plenty of time for each factor, including getting ready through to photos, travel time and speeches.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Do your research first and know your budget before you go browsing.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day.

A lot of people get “logos” designed for their wedding as a brand for stationary etc. We were lucky as Hughs family have a lovely family crest which has been in his family for a very long time. We decided to use that as our “logo” on all stationary and then kept the stationary very classic, simple.

We kept it reasonably small. We only had 90 people at the wedding and reception. But we put on a three day event, as so many people had traveled so far. The night before on the Thursday we had welcome drinks and canapés at the roof top restaurant we got engaged at. Friday was the wedding. Then Saturday we had a huge day after event at a friend’s farm on the edge of Lake Hume. We had 40 extra friends come that day so we could include more people that we couldn’t have at the wedding.

Often many times you go to weddings and everyone has drunk too much to know there even was a cake or a first dance. So we thought we would mix it up a little and it worked really well with the venue layout. We had drink and canapés in the garden whilst we were doing photos then we joined everyone. We then had the father of the bride and father of the groom speeches in the garden. After that we moved to the deck with the marquee over it and we cut the cake and did our first dance. It was great, as everyone could see, got lots of photos and then everyone joined us on the dance floor and we had time with everyone dancing with the band or chatting to more people before we sat down for more speeches and entrees. We were really pleased with that decision.

Something Old and borrowed? I borrowed Hugh’s sister diamond earrings, which were their Great Grandmothers. Both his sisters and mother wore them on their wedding days.

Something Blue? My sister in-law who couldn’t come, as she had just had a baby, sent me a mirror compact covered in blue crystals engraved from my nieces. And the cute little bow surprise sewn into my dress.



Florist Flowers Naturally Albury

Photographer Jarred Eid Photography (Jarred came down from Brisbane, he had shot my sisters wedding in Sydney the year before and did an amazing job, so great to work with and such a lovely guy.)

Music – Baker Boys Melbourne (We had seen them at other friends weddings, having everyone up dancing was very important to us and they did the job.)

First Dance – Engelbert Humperdinck – “Can’t Take My Eye Off You”

Stationery Copy and Print, Auckland (Owned by my parents, very lucky, big save on the budget.)

Cake – CakesRilicous Wodonga

Bombonieres – 1Above The Flight Drink and Esty

Hair – David Mann @ Lola Wigg Albury

Make up – Sasha Tunley (Sister in law)

Wedding Bands and Engagement Ring – Garry Mouradjallian @ King Street Design Sydney

Extra features - Furniture Hire – Gather Vintage Hire Albury

Decorations - Decorative Events Sydney