karenwillisholmes

Unit 501 Flourmill Studios, 3 Gladstone Street 2042 Newtown NSW, australia
Phone: 61 2 9519 3901

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KWH Trunkshow - Elle Bridal Boutique

Posted on 27 Jul, 2017
KWH Trunkshow - Elle Bridal Boutique

Elle Bridal Boutique in San Diego is hosting a traveling Karen Willis Holmes Trunk show from Friday, August 4th - Sunday, August 13th. Elle Bridal Boutique prides itself on providing a luxury experience for their brides, offering a curated selection of only the best gowns.  

The latest Karen Willis Holmes BESPOKE and KWH by Karen Willis Holmes sequinned collection will be available to try on & for this post, we have selected some of our favourite gowns to give you a preview of what will be available. 

*** Elle Bridal Boutique is partnering with one of the best in the business for the weekend of this trunk show - Elwynn + Cass - A day of pampering with this talented Style Concierge, who are offering braids and lashes for some lucky brides, so make sure you book in quick!***

Aria

Cassie

Celine

Cindy

Lauren Gown

Paris Gown

Nikki Gown

Alecia & Natalia

Taryn & Camille

STORE DETAILS

Trunk show dates - Friday, August 4th - Sunday, August 13th 

Address - 1133 Columbia St, Suite 101, San Diego, CA 92101
Ph - 619-326-8034
Website - Click here
Instagram - Click here
Facebook - Click here 

For appointments to try on our gowns during the trunk show, click here 

Chris + Brydie's modern Melbourne wedding

Posted on 24 Jul, 2017
Chris + Brydie's modern Melbourne wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? We worked together at Safeway, we were friends for about two years before we started going out. We had a huge group of friends that used to all go out from our store, we were lucky enough to have a table filled with these people at our wedding too.

How long have you been together? We have been together for 9 years this year. 

Do you have a proposal story? Chris asked me to be his girlfriend at the lighthouse in Aireys Inlet - my family own a home down there and we always head there for a quiet get away, he proposed in the exact spot at the lighthouse where he asked me to be his girlfriend.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 31st March 2017

Location? Carousel, Albert Park.

What made you choose there? We both love Melbourne and wanted a venue which we could have the ceremony and reception at the one place and that could be outside so we could have the city as the backdrop – the minute we walked into Carousel, we knew it was the one.

How did you find it? Had seen so many photos on Instagram of Carousel, however, the photos don’t do the venue justice. It is even more incredible in real life.

How was the weather on the day? March was so hot for the beginning of the month; the week we were getting married it rained Monday through to Thursday. Our wedding day was perfect, not a breath of wind and we had perfect blue skies, I couldn’t believe we were so lucky.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? No reason, we just wanted a summers evening and were happy to be flexible.

The Wedding Details

Theme? I wanted a  'simple' theme – mainly whites, lots of greenery and marble. We had the marble touches with our wedding favours and our cake was a ‘marble look’ which looked amazing. Chris and I both love that clean, fresh look so we were happy with how everything turned out.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Looked at Pinterest and Instagram, you can get some great ideas from there and also plenty of DIY help too.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? I did my own wedding favours; I really wanted to provide Engraved Marble Coasters and they were so difficult to source or really expensive. I was lucky enough that my families business owns a machine that laser cuts different materials. I purchased 200 hexagon coasters online and designed the text and engraved them all myself, was so happy with the final product and they were about 1/6th of the cost I was quoted.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?

MOH – Mardi Lacey, my best friend of 17 years, Mardi and I got engaged a month apart and she got married 5 weeks before me so it was such a special time for us both. 

Bridesmaids - My sister, Jessica. My friend (and now Cousin in Law) Jessica McFarlane and my good friend Camilla Smith. 

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

Best Man – Grant Szabo – Friend

Groomsmen - Ashleigh McFarlane – Cousin and Joel Pearce and Craig Lacey, both good Friends. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Brydie wore our BESPOKE 'Sophie' gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I went to the One Fine Day wedding expo in Melbourne, saw the Karen Willis Holmes dresses and loved them, immediately followed your Instagram and knew it was where I wanted to go when it came to looking.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? As above

How many gowns did you try? I tried on approximately 5 Gowns; I had been wedding dress shopping with my best friend only a month or two before (at other places, not KWH). I was able to get an idea of what I liked and didn't like which helped me narrow down options.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? The store in Armadale in Melbourne. 

What did you especially like about your gown? I originally thought I wanted something simple and not traditional. When trying on other dresses I thought they were nice but I didn’t feel like a ‘bride’. I had seen the 'Sophie' Gown on the website and loved the detail on the bodice but didn’t think it would suit me, I tried it on and immediately felt comfortable - I loved the deep V neckline and how it held me in at the waist, I really feel it complimented my shape perfectly. The moment I came out of the dressing room my mum, sister and best friend all started crying so I knew that it was the perfect dress.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Pilgrim

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? My husband’s suit was from Versace, the groomsmen suits were from Peter Jackson.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore a pair of my mother’s drop pearl earrings, I wasn't going to wear anything else but on the morning of the wedding, my bridesmaids gave me a beautiful Tiffany & Co. bracelet which I wore. The Bridesmaids all had shoes from Joanne Mercer, I bought them necklaces from Linden Cook Jewelry and they all wore pearl earrings I sourced from overseas.

Where did you get your shoes from? Nine West

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was also from Karen Willis Holmes. 

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Try not to stress! My family and friends kept saying I was too relaxed and they were waiting for me to 'crack'. I am a really organized person in my day to day life, I used a spreadsheet to help keep me up to date on when things were needed to be done and when they needed to be paid. This was helpful as you book so many things so far in advance and then have to revisit them closer to the day – having a spreadsheet can help you see key dates and what needs to be addressed. Also, remember to ask your wedding venue if they will help you with a run sheet which can be overwhelming if you have to do on your own; Carousel were amazing (my event planner Rachel was incredible) and provided me with one which I was able to alter and pass onto all my other vendors.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Know what suits your body shape and don’t get pressured into a style you wouldn’t normally wear. Also, if you aren’t comfortable trying it on then you won’t want to wear it all day ... so make sure you are comfortable. Also, trust the people who work in the stores, they often can pick something that would suit you that you might not have normally considered.

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

Something Old? Pearl Earrings from my mother

Something New? Bracelet from my bridesmaids

Something Borrowed? Earrings from my mother

Something Blue? The tiny blue bow which is sewn into each Karen Willis Holmes gown. 

Suppliers

Photographer – Stuart Leishman

Florist – Grown Florist

Videographer – Life in Light (So incredible, my best friend and I both used life in light for our weddings. Stevan makes you feel so comfortable and you don’t even notice him on the day)

Music – The White Tree Band

First Dance – Wherever you will go, the Calling

Celebrant – Debra Holder

Stationery - Deciduous Press, our wedding stationary was letter pressed and so incredible. Deciduous Press were a pleasure to deal with and

Cake – Lamana Patisserie

Bombonieres – DIY Hexagon Marble Coasters

Hair – Gabrielle Roccuzzo

Make-Up – Karla Roccuzzo – Karla and Gabrielle were sensational, they are sisters and work so well together and were so quick which was great as it meant we didn’t have to spend hours and hours in hair and makeup.

Wedding Bands - Michael Wilson Diamond Jewelers, Eltham - (Which was the same place my engagement ring was made.)

Extra features - Our wedding arch which had the lettering 'we decided on forever' and was AMAZING and so big, we hired this through a lady called Kristine Kopman (I found her on Gumtree so always look at different avenues for items to have for your wedding décor etc.) Also, we had a hanging floral installation that was supplied by White Luxe.

Madi + Henning stunning Sydney harbour wedding

Posted on 19 Jul, 2017
Madi + Henning stunning Sydney harbour wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met for the first time in Manly through a mutual friend.

How long have you been together? We’ll be together for 2 years on 4th July 2017. Our first (official) date was on the 4th of July 2015 in Manly too and we’ve seen each other every single day since then (except for one day).

Do you have a proposal story? Henning proposed to me on the 18th of October 2015 (only 3 months after our first date ... when you know, you KNOW!). We went to Port Macquarie for the weekend as he was competing in the Ironman 70.3 race that weekend. It was our first weekend away together. He finished the race on the Sunday and after relaxing a bit he said we should go and grab some coffee/tea and go to the beach. We sat next to the beach and chatted for a while when he said we should take a stroll as it would be good to stretch his legs after the race (yeah right!). We got to this small private beach and we went and stood in the water for a while..chatting a bit more. A random fisherman joined us and I found it a little strange that Henning was a bit troubled by his presence, but didn’t think much of it .... luckily the fisherman went on the rocks and left us alone once again. I was still staring out at the ocean when all of a sudden Henning said he had a question to ask me ... when I turned to face him, he was down on one knee, holding the most beautiful ring ever!!! I was soooo taken aback, that I said “no, really?” a few times until he asked if I was planning on saying “yes!” at any point ;) I didn’t expect it AT ALL ... I mean seriously, who proposes just after finishing an Ironman Race!!!!???

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 22 April 2017

Ceremony Location? St Matthews Anglican Church, Manly

What made you choose there? We are members of the church.

Reception Location? Manly Skiff Club

What made you choose there? It was close to our church and it had the relaxed, beach setting we were looking for. They were also very flexible and easy to work with. We knew that we wanted to get married in Manly as so many of our “firsts” happened there.

How did you find it? We used to live in Manly and I saw it one day while travelling home from work on the ferry.

How was the weather on the day? Absolutely perfect!!! It was the perfect, sunny autumn day. It started out overcast in the morning but turned into a beautiful sunny day by the time the ceremony finished. I didn’t even have to wear a jacket later that evening and even Henning could walk around without his jacket. 

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? No specific reason, it just felt right. We didn’t want to get married in the summer or winter and it was a good time for our family to travel from South Africa as it was right after the Easter long weekend.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Natural, leafy botanicals with Rose Gold, Navy and Duck Egg Blue. 

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? I wanted something that was relaxed, soft and elegant and not too girly. My engagement ring was made out of Rose Gold, so I wanted to incorporate it into my theme and I love navy and duck-egg blue. The box that my engagement ring came in was duck egg blue velvet with a Rose Gold “M” on it ... I just love that colour combo (The Mrs Box).

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Most of it was DIY ... the whole family was involved. I have my own wedding stationery company, so I made the invites and all the other stationery items. My mum, my aunt and my sister arranged the flowers. We sourced the vases ourselves. My mum also made the linen napkins that were on the tables and my gran helped her to make all the bunting. My aunt made our wedding cake and my cousin did my hair and make-up. My gran also made our wedding dessert ... her famous marshmallow treat! My dad is very handy and loves making things out of wood, so he made a structure that we painted and put on the cake table. My sister also made both my rings and my husband’s. My youngest sister also organized the most amazing Bridal Shower for me where we all made flower crowns ... it was unforgettable.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? My two sisters

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Old friends of my husband

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? My niece, Emese

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Madi looked stunning in our sequin 'Poppy' gown from our KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I’ve always LOVED all the dresses at Karen Willis Holmes and followed your page on instagram. My sisters didn’t know about my obsession and googled for a place to try on beautiful wedding gowns. They came across the Karen Willis Holmes page and booked an appointment without my knowledge. The kept it a surprise and took me to the Padding Store. I was blown away that they choose Karen Willis Holmes for my first bridal fitting. The Padding Store was beautiful and the girl (Jess I think her name was), was sooo lovely. It was a really enjoyable experience.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Only in magazines and on social media. The first picture of a gown I saved about 8 years ago as “my wedding dress someday” was a Karen Willis Holmes dress that I saw in a magazine.

How many gowns did you try? About 5 or so. I tried the 'Poppy' dress on first and fell in love (my mum and sisters started crying when they saw me). Then I tried a few more after that, just to be sure, but went with the first one. First day of dress shopping, first store, first dress. 

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Padding, Sydney. 

What did you especially like about your gown? It was soooo comfortable and elegant, but really special. I love sequence. My mum and sisters said it suits my beach theme and the sequence looks like little seashells.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Piper Lane

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? The Groomsmen used their own suits, we just gave them their ties. The groom bought his suit at Paul’s Menswear in the CBD

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I bought beautiful Stephanie Browne earrings and my sisters wore their own earrings ... one of them wore elke earrings.

Where did you get your shoes from? Nine West

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My mum made my veil and I borrowed the headpiece from my cousin ... my something borrowed. 

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Don’t over think it! Everything will come together in the end ... and make sure that you enjoy the whole process as it’s over way too quickly.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Choose something you feel comfortable in and that takes your breath away!

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? The whole day was just so special and we felt so loved and blessed! We struggled a bit to get our rings on during the church ceremony, hence all the photos of us laughing. Also, we didn’t plan on having a first dance, as we’ve never danced together before (even though we both love dancing) and we didn’t even have a special song. Our MC decided to put it up for a vote and all our guests voted that we should dance. My sister’s boyfriend (our DJ), chose “My Girl” as our song ... so, it was not only our first dance as husband and wife, but our first dance EVER! It was perfect! At our wedding, most of our guests were family and only a few very close friends, which made it feel really intimate and relaxed. We also had time to chat with everyone and to enjoy our food. 

Something Old? My fur shawl

Something New? Almost all of it, my dress, underwear, shoes and earrings.

Something Borrowed? My headpiece

Something Blue? A little blue bow inside my dress

 

Suppliers

Photographer – Nikki Meyer Photography. I very dear friend of mine from Uni. She came from South Africa to take our photos. I’ve always wanted her to take my wedding photos. She is so creative and has a wonderful eye for detail. I trust her completely, so it was so lovely to not have to worry about one aspect of the wedding. The fact that we knew her, made the photo sessions more enjoyable and comfortable too.

Florist – My mum, aunt and sisters!

Music – My sister’s boyfriend (Nic). He’s in a band (Food Court) and DJ’s on the side as well. We just let him know more or less what we liked and he did the rest. The music was PERFECT!! As mentioned, he even chose the perfect wedding dance song for us.

First Dance – 'My Girl' - The Temptations

MC – Francois Potgieter (one of the groomsmen). He did an awesome job. 

Celebrant – Pastor Bruce Clarke

Stationery – The Little Paper Pantry (I made my own)

Menu – Deck BBQ buffet ... delicious! With a charcuterie table for the guests on arrival and my Gran’s homemade marshmallow treat for dessert.

Cake – It was a naked carrot cake (Henning’s favourite) ... my aunt made it

Hair and Make-Up – My cousin, Mele van der Merwe who is a beautician and works for QT Spa in the city. She did an AMAZING job and got op extra early to be in Manly on time.

Wedding Bands – Em Archer Design. My sister made them for us as well as my engagement ring. My wedding rings are white and rose gold with diamonds and my husband’s ring is made out of platinum. We gave my sister an idea of what we wanted and she did the rest ... we are over the moon with how they turned out!!!

Wedding Cars – Kombi Weddings. I was soooo happy with their service from the very first enquiry. The are friendly and very accommodating and very reasonably priced. They also went the extra mile on the wedding day and knew all the best spots to take photos. Couldn’t recommend Stephen and Wendy highly enough.

Cufflinks – Order via Etsy at Jules Read design. Excellent service and prompt delivery (I left it a little late). I was very happy with the end result.

Rose Gold Cutlery – We hired these from Harbourside Decorators. Excellent service and reasonably priced!

Hotel  Q Station,  Manly. The bridal party stayed there the night before the wedding and my husband and I stayed there for our wedding night as well. LOVED the rooms and the view as well as the complimentary breakfasts!! We plan on going back every year for our wedding anniversary

 

KWH 2017 Sequin Collection - In Stores This Weekend!

Posted on 17 Jul, 2017
KWH 2017 Sequin Collection - In Stores This Weekend!

The wait is over! The new KWH by Karen Willis Holmes sequinned collection will be dropping into Australian KWH boutiques nationally on the 22nd of July 2017! Sharing with you the stunning new shapes which form this year's highly anticipated collection. 

The new sequined collection brings the updated additions of low, interesting backs, long sheer sleeves and directional beading which leans itself towards that art deco glamour that is forever timeless.  The focus is on exceptional fit, embroidery and embellishment details.  This collection is for the modern, non-traditional bride looking to stand out and make jaws drop.

Don't miss out on one of these gowns, they are sure to sell out fast.  To book an appointment, find your nearest store below this post. 

Cassie

Slim fitting V-neck gown with directional beading detail through the bodice and into the bias cut skirt. Featuring long beaded sleeves and a sheer high neck that delicately ties into a bow at the back neck, exposing a low cut out back.

Cindy

All-over sequined halter-neck bias cut gown, featuring a detailed scalloped neckline that fastens at the back neck. The gown opens into a long, elegant keyhole at the back, finishing at the waist. 

Aria

All-over sequined halter-neck gown with low, exposed back featuring stunning strapping detailing. Exquisite beading detail centrally running down the sides of the gown. 

Celine

Low V-neck fully beaded gown with sheer long sleeves. Exquisite beading detail through the bodice and softly into the skirt.

 

Sky

Beaded bias cut sheath gown with ever-so-delicate spaghetti straps that elegantly expose the back, finishing at the waist with covered buttons running through the skirt. 

Whitney

V-neck lattice beaded gown with exquisite floral detailing through the bodice and falling into the softly bias cut skirt.



Donna

Fully beaded bias cut gown with a fitted bodice and delicate spaghetti straps. Exquisite banded beading design through the skirt, splaying into the hem. 

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT YOUR NEAREST KWH BOUTIQUE

Melbourne - Book an appointment
Brisbane - Book an appointment
Alexandria - Book an appointment
Paddington - Book an appointment
Perth - Book an appointment

SHOOT CREDITS

Gowns- Karen Willis Holmes
Photographer- Bek Smith
Makeup- Ross Andrewartha for YSL Beauty 
Hair- Brittany Cartel
Model- Eileen Cassidy
Space- XO Studios

Highlight Stockist / Sphere Collective

Posted on 16 Jul, 2017
Highlight Stockist  /  Sphere Collective

We. Love. Sphere Collective.  The new kids on the block on the Sunshine Coast ooze style and class, whilst tapping into those effortlessly cool beachy vibes. SC stocks Karen Willis Holmes and other amazing Australian designers, fit for the modern bride.  

Sarah the owner lives and breathes her business and the Sunshine Coast lifestyle.  She is up early swimming in the ocean, making brides dreams come true by day before collapsing in exhaustion in the early evening.  She finds comfort in the crazy, as this is her passion and she never loses motivation to drive her business and life to where it needs to be. We took a few minutes to look into how she founded SC and what makes her tick.  

Your name? Sarah

Store name? Sphere Collective
 
Where is your store located? On the beautiful beach esplanade of Maroochydore, Sunshine Coast

Tell us a bit about yourself and how you started your store? I come from a background of hair and makeup before getting into the fashion industry where I worked as a stylist in Sydney. Styling is my thing, I love it. I was lucky enough to work with so many different professionals in Sydney. Magazines, department stores, designers, hair and makeup artists and personal clients. Then I fell in love with a boy in Noosa (as you do) and after a long distance relationship, I decided it was time to move to Noosa, QLD. 

I wanted to continue my work here of styling and fashion and the Sunshine Coast is known for its beautiful wedding locations and suppliers, I thought it was the perfect place to launch Sphere. I wanted a space for brides and women to come and feel comfortable to just play dress ups. Maybe try something they would have never picked out themselves. I took a risk and went for more modern pieces and designs, also adding not your average bridal accessories that would be a special investment, for not just brides but bridesmaids but for all women. It took a year of planning and I worked three jobs to get it going, then finally opened the doors last October.

What does a typical day for you involve? Sounds crazy, but it starts at 3:45 am. My partner and I get up and do a workout then have a coffee together at 5 am, he goes off to work and I will go for a swim in the ocean or a walk along the beach. It’s the only part of my day that isn’t interrupted and it really makes me feel calm and collected ready to start the day. 6am-7am I will check emails and respond to my international designers and have a skype session or phone call to chat about new designs orders deliveries etc.
By 9 am I am at the boutique and answering more emails, setting up for the day, steaming prepping.  10am-6pm is manic! I’m in bridal appointments, seeing clients, answering emails, answering phone calls, making orders, following up orders, planning events, shoots, advertising. Researching new gowns, looks, styles. Personal shopping for brides, clients. Plan outfits and looks, answer more emails. (try on a few gowns somewhere in there) 6pm/6:30 pm I’m home and literally exhausted. Dinner is usually cooked by 7 pm and I am in bed by 7:30/8pm! 
It’s crazy but I love it.

Why do you love your job? Because I love fashion, I literally get to play with fashion all day every day and there is no better feeling than putting a look together for a bride or slipping her into a gown and she feels like the most beautiful person in the world!  You can literally see them feel so beautiful about themselves, that’s the best part.

What are your favourite KWH gowns and why? Lottie, hands down!. I’m a sucker for sequins - the cut and shape of Lottie is perfect amounts of modern, sexy and classic. It’s so different yet so simple. It’s also a gown you can have some fun with and really style up in different ways.

What is it your clients love about a KWH gown and who do you see as the ‘KWH bride’? Clients love KWH for the classic and sophisticated cuts and shapes, yet the fabrics, textures and designs have the modern edge. There is something about wearing KWH gown that just makes you feel super special and like a total bridal. The KWH bride is stylish and classic.


What are your tips or advice for brides searching for their gown? Try everything on. I always get my brides to, even if it’s something they don’t necessarily see themselves in, I still like to get them to try everything on so we can see what styles, cuts, fabrics, textures work and don’t work. Then we can start to narrow it down to their style and what suits them. 

What is your coffee order? At 5 am it’s a double shot skinny latte ¾ full (I’m one of those painful coffee customers) at 9 am it’s a bulletproof coffee. 

Favourite city? Sydney. Although I’m pretty sure I’m going to fall in love with NYC later this year. 

Best way to spend $50? Wine

Best advice you ever received? Go for it and don’t sweat the small stuff (as hard as that is not to!)

Anything else you would like to share with brides-to-be about your store and what you offer? We offer exclusive one on one appointments. A full hour is dedicated to you. We will work with you to help find your perfect style and look. Encourage you to try things you might not have thought and let you enjoy the hour of feeling like a total bride! Our job doesn’t just finish with your gown, we love to work with our brides to help find and create your full bridal look. 
Most importantly we want you to visit and really enjoy your experience, with a cheeky glass of bubbles along the way.

CREDITS

Photographer Tess Leopold  • Hair and Makeup Luciana Rose •  Gowns Karen Willis Holmes •  Accessories Natasha Schweitzer • Model Christina Machpherson.

Store photos Kevin Mclean

STORE DETAILS

Address 49 The Esplanade, Maroochydore, QLD
Phone 07 5408 6083

To make an appointment click here, or check out their Instagram 

Kara & Matthew's Gold Coast Hinterland Wedding

Posted on 10 Jul, 2017
Kara & Matthew's Gold Coast Hinterland Wedding

Kara and Matthew have been lovebirds for a lifetime.  They have almost been together longer than they haven't; having met at 14 years old.  They fell in love and are now getting married after 12 years together.  The couple got engaged in the Tiffany and Co store in New York where unbeknown to Kara, Matthew had been planning the moment for 10 months - she thought she was there to look at engagement rings for Matt's sister.  

Their wedding planner Rachael from The Events Lounge scouted a beautiful private property in the Gold Coast hinterland where they exchanged vows in a laid back, backyard style wedding. Two things stole the limelight on the day- one being the stunning Kara who wore the Blake/Alexia gown with a beaded art deco 'Webb' cape, all by Karen Willis Holmes.  The second was the impressively decadent 6-metre long grazing table complete with a cheese wheel cake by Your Platter Matters which has gone viral online. The wedding also featured intimate garden party Morrocan inspired floor cushions and rugs, providing a tranquil haven for guests to relax at before and after the sit-down dinner. The love filled day was emotionally topped off with Kara's good friend Yves performing a traditional Cook Island dance which beautifully connected Kara and Matthews Islander roots.

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband? We went to school together, Primary right through to High. It wasn’t until the 9th grade we started hanging out in the same social groups and took an interest in each other.

How long have you been together? We have been together for 12 years; we were 14 when we first started dating. 

Do you have a proposal story? We were traveling around the US with Matt’s sister and her (now) husband and had an 8-day stop in New York. Nicole had told me she and her husband had planned to buy their wedding bands from Tiffany and Co at the Fifth Ave store and asked if Matt and I wanted to go along and enjoy the experience with them. Once we were there Nicole kept me busy by fussing over wedding bands while the guys went and met with Nikki, the lady Matt had been working with for 10 months to plan the proposal. Nikki then came and asked me if I’d like to see a new collection of jewelry that had just come in so I rushed over to the cabinet and when I got there I saw an open Tiffany’s box with this amazing ring sitting in it, and a note from Matt asking me to marry him. When I turned around I saw Matt getting down on one knee. With a shaky voice, he told me how much he loved me and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him. I was in shock and I don’t think I even managed to say anything but the tears started flowing; I was a bundle of nerves and happiness. We went into a private room and had champagne and cake while a parade marched outside the window and down the Avenue. Afterward, we all went for burgers and beers at a diner around the corner.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 5 November 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Private venue, Currumbin Valley

What made you choose there? We viewed two venues initially and fell in love with Currumbin Valley instantly. Unfortunately, the venue we wanted wasn’t available for the dates we were looking at and so we ended up going with a venue in Tweed Valley. The venue in Tweed Valley then underwent a few changes which we didn’t like the look of so Rachael, our wedding planner showed us a property back in Currumbin Valley which had just opened up to hosting weddings and we fell in love all over again. We decided without even visiting that we had to have it. The bridal party spent three days there, including the wedding day, relaxing and enjoying the valley. We found out just before our big day that Cate Blanchett had stayed there too only a few weeks prior while filming was happening on the Gold Coast, that was exciting.

How did you find it? Our Wedding Planner, Rachael (The Events Lounge) found it after a couple other venues not working out. 

How was the weather on the day? Hot! 

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? It was the date we’d chosen for the Tweed Valley venue so decided just to stick with it seeing as we’d already begun booking suppliers. Turns out November 5th is also the birth date of an Aunty of mine and an Aunty of Matt’s so it was a nice day to celebrate marriage and birthdays. 

The Wedding Details

Theme? From the beginning, we knew we wanted the day to be relaxed and fairly casual, and for the look of it all to be romantic and whimsical. My only real “must haves” were fairly lights, beautiful coloured flowers, hanging foliage, good food and plenty of drinks.
Being from the NT we wanted the experience to be a new one for our guests which is why we chose to have a large grazing table during the cocktail hour and share platters during the reception, rugs and cushions and live acoustic music; it’s not something that I’ve seen happen up here at a wedding so it was really important our guests experience that difference.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Lots of bridal magazines, I visited Hello May and The Lane religiously, I had a Pinterest board going and browsed Instagram too for some inspiration. 

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? No DIY, we left all the planning in Rachael’s brilliant hands.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? 

Lilian Boocock- cousin. (Maid of Honour) Lilian is my sister from another mister, my go to for good laughs and a shoulder to cry on. She’s one of my favourite people in the whole world.

Nicole Civitarese- sister in law. Nicole is practically my sister and one of the most important people in my life, we’ve been through so much together and I couldn’t imagine my life without her.

Nadine Bourchier- friend. Nadine is one of those people I feel I can be completely and authentically my whole self with and for that I adore her, she’s amazing.

Ashleigh McLellan- friend. Ashleigh is one of my most reliable and loyal friends, without fail we are there for each other 100% and without question, I love her to bits.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? 

Kris Civitarese, brother in law. (Best Man) Matt and Kris have been friends for years and when Kris and Nicole became an item it brought their friendship closer. They’re brothers and friends, where one is you’re sure to find the other.

Lauchlan Lake, brother in law. Mischief makers when they’re together; Matt has been a part of Lauchlan’s life since Lauchlan was 12 so Matt is very much a big brother figure in his life. Without question if Matt asks Lauchlan for help Lauchlan is there 100% and vice versa, we use to tease Matt saying that he only started dating me so he could be better friends with my brother.

Des Green, friend. Des is a top guy; he’s a role model and a great friend. He’s the kind of guy to drop whatever he’s doing to help someone in need, he’s so laid back and optimistic it’s hard not to enjoy his company.

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? 

Flower girl - Cheynijane James, cousin. 

Page boy - Alex Lake, nephew.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Kara wore the 'Blake/Alexia' combination gown in heavy twill.  She finished this stunning look off by adding the 'Webb Cape'. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I had looked online at some Karen Willis Holmes dresses and thought they were just beautiful. I loved that although the designs are classic they have modern twists to them which was what I was looking for. 

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Only online and in magazines, living in the Northern Territory means we’re pretty limited and have to travel thousands of kilometers to try on designer gowns.

How many gowns did you try? At Karen Willis Holmes I tried on 3 dresses. Prior to that I had tried on about 6 between two other stores.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes, SydneyWhat did you especially like about your gown? I felt so feminine wearing this gown; it hugged my body just right and made me feel somewhat sexy, although that was far from what I was trying to do! It was everything I hadn’t wanted my dress to look like and yet when I tried it on I just didn’t want to take it off.  It was so comfortable and supportive. I loved the art deco vibe from the sequin capelet and that it added an extra element to the simplicity of the gown, I had so many compliments about it!

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Two Birds Bridesmaid

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Black Jacket Suiting

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My earrings were from Samantha Wills. I purchased the earrings for my bridesmaids from a boutique store in Fortitude Valley called Chrissa Alexion

Where did you get your shoes from? Wittner

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was from Karen Willis Holmes & hair piece was from Jennifer Behr. My flower crown was made by Elyssium Blooms 

Other: The flower girl’s dress was from Tutu du Monde and the page boy’s outfit was a combination of Seed Heritage kids and Bardot Junior.

What advice would you give brides organising their wedding? It’s natural to want to make the day as memorable and enjoyable as possible for everyone, but not everyone is going to love what you love or agree with every single one of your choices. Don’t let the pressure get to you, just remember they’re your choices and the day is about you two, so as long as you’re happy with your decisions leading up to the day it will all be perfect and your guests will just enjoy celebrating the special occasion with you both. 

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t take too many people with you when you go for trials. Two or maybe three people max is enough otherwise there are far too many opinions and what you thought you wanted becomes clouded, I had 6 people! It was hard. Also, be open to trying on dresses you normally wouldn’t look twice at, you’ll get a feel for what silhouettes look good and what styles you thought you’d like but just don’t seem to fit. 

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

Special moment for Kara: As part of the Hen’s Day celebrations the girls took me to Libertine perfumery in Fortitude Valley, we had champagne and tried different kinds of amazing perfumes, it was really beautiful. The girls had me pick out a perfume and bought it for me as a bridal gift, it was really special and I felt very spoilt!

And, the moment my Dad walked in the door and saw me for the first time, he got so choked up I’d never seen him like that before. He told me I looked beautiful and so grown-up, he said he hadn’t recognised me at first and then the tears came, he gave me the tightest hug and couldn’t stop smiling.

Favourite moment for Matt: Seeing Kara at the top of the aisle was my perfect moment. Up to that point I’d been staring at my feet, I couldn’t look up, not even to watch the bridesmaids come down the aisle. I told my Best Man to tell me when Kara was coming down and when she did, I couldn’t control my emotions.  She looked perfect.

Suppliers 

Florist - Elyssium Blooms 
I found Elyssium Blooms on Instagram and they were also suggested by Rachael; I loved the style of their work. Elise went above and beyond setting up on the day, heavily pregnant and working in 40+ degree heat, she and her team did such an amazing job!

Photographer - Heart and Colour
I first came across Heart and Colour on The Lane website and after browsing their blog I fell in love with their work. I knew from the moment I found their page I’d found our photographers; Bek and Phil were so friendly and welcoming from the get go, I just loved working with them.

Music - Acoustic musician during guest arrival, ceremony and cocktail hour was Sarah Archer Music 
Sarah was a suggested artist by Rachael; I did some browsing on youtube and Instagram and instantly loved her smooth vocals and vibe. She was so lovely to work with!

DJ: Chris Parker (friend): Matt and Chris were neighbours right throughout their childhood and I’d gotten to know him better during High School. Chris used to DJ locally, he’s a super cool guy with great music taste so we asked him if he’d like to DJ at our wedding and he said yes!

First Dance - Nothing can change this Love by Sam Cooke

Event Planner/ Stylist- The Events Lounge – Rachael Romijn 
The first time we met Rachael we just clicked; we found so much common ground between us all and that made everything about the process so easy. During our first meeting, Rach told us she didn’t work in the areas we were originally looking at for our wedding, and we wanted her to plan our wedding so badly we actually changed the locations we were looking at just so we could work with her. She is super talented and really is one of the loveliest and most genuine people I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting, we adore Rach.

MC: Chris Helmond (friend):
Chris is one of our oldest and most musically talented friends; he plays in a band, DJ’s and has such a vibrant personality there was no one else we had even considered asking to MC our night. He made everyone feel so relaxed, he’s a legend.

Celebrant - Paul Voge 
Paul is just brilliant. I’d first come across Paul while browsing the internet and when Rach suggested him it just confirmed we were looking in the right places for people who could make our day super special. Paul was so easy going and fun; he made the whole process so easy. We’ve heard nothing but the best feedback about Paul from our guests, they’ve said he was interactive and playful and just downright cool! 

Stationery - Cass Deller Design 
I’d first come across Cass Deller on The Lane, her portfolio was so gorgeous and I was in love from the moment I saw her work. Cass was so accommodating and friendly, she was lovely to work with.

Menu - Graze Catering 
Graze was a catering company I’d also found via The Lane. We’d always known that we wanted share plates to make the dinner more intimate and so people were comfortable and well fed throughout the night. They went above and beyond and our guests loved that they were able to eat as little or as much as they wanted.

Grazing Table- Your Platter Matters  
I knew from the beginning that canapes weren’t for us, I wanted a visual feast and for our guests to be able to help themselves to food whenever they pleased, I wanted it to be as relaxed as possible. My sister in law tagged me in a post on Facebook as a joke but when I saw the platters I just knew they were exactly what I was after. Megan was a dream to work with, we threw some ideas around but I basically asked her to be free with whatever she felt would make the grazing table look and taste amazing and as long as there was cheese and plenty of it, I’d be happy! When I saw the cheese tower and the fantastic colours, I was completely blown away, Megan went above and beyond my expectations! (Our platter has gone viral! on social media!) She was a dream to work with; I can’t speak highly enough of her.

Drinks service- Anise Catering
Anise Catering was also a suggested supplier from The Lane and Rachael had mentioned asking them to do the drinks service which proved to be one of the best choices for the day. Our guests could not stop talking about the amazing staff and service that Anise provided and I agree with them. Every person catering to our guests was so friendly and attentive they remembered guest’s names and certain drinks and were just a dream team of lovely people. 

Cake - Tome 
I found Tome early on in the planning stages while scrolling Instagram for some inspiration. As soon as I saw their cakes and doughnuts I was hooked! For our cake we had layers of white chocolate and raspberry, vanilla, and coconut.  Our desserts were a mixture of lemon meringue tarts, Oreo cheesecakes, caramel brownies and Nutella brownies, Nutella cheesecake doughnuts, salted caramel doughnuts and Oreo doughnuts. We let Alita go free with decorating the desserts and the amazing-ness she came back with left us speechless!

Hair & make-up- Avia Beauty
I’d come across Avia Beauty while browsing the internet, and again when I saw Georga’s portfolio I knew I’d found the person who I’d like to have help me on the day. Georga is one of the nicest and genuinely lovely people I’ve met, she offered so much helpful advice and made us all feel so relaxed. 

Wedding Bands - Tiffany and Co

Extra features - Elyssium Lighting
Elise and her husband Steve also do Elyssium Lighting alongside Elyssium Blooms so it was only natural they did our lighting too. It was such a hot day and Steve and his team did such a fabulous job, the twinkling lights were one of my favourite details of the wedding. I took a minute during the night to just look around and let it all sink in and I’ll never forget the lights or the pink glow under the marquee, it was so beautiful!

Other – We feel so incredibly fortunate to have met so many wonderful people during the wedding experience. We were so lucky to have had their talents contributed to making our day so perfect. There was so much kindness and passion all around us, we are so grateful to every single person that played a part in pulling it all together.  

Bridget + Gary's classic South Coast Wedding

Posted on 07 Jul, 2017
Bridget + Gary's classic  South Coast Wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? Gary and I met when we were 16 years old through friends. We started hanging out more and more but it definitely wasn't 'love at first sight'. One day Gary got the courage to ask me if we want to go on a date. He could barely look me in the eye! And since then, we can’t stop looking at each other.

How long have you been together? We have been together for 10 years!

Do you have a proposal story? It was the day before we were due to leave for a 3.5 month Asia trip, and Gary suggested that we go for a walk in the nearby nature reserve as we would be sitting on a plane for a long time. Halfway through we stopped to look at the view, I turned around to find Gary on one knee, he then proceeded to ask me to be his wife. I immediately started to cry and didn't believe him! He had gotten me a beautiful Tiffany & Co.bracelet as I had told him that I would love to design the ring together. My mum and sister were at home visiting me and I couldn't wait to rush home and tell them, Gary had kept it a secret from my whole family. I walked in the door crying and told them what had just happened and we all cried with Gary standing by wondering what to do! We left the next day for Japan as a newly engaged couple. It was an amazing start to our holiday.

 

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? We got married on March 11th 2017

Wedding Venue? It was held at Jaspers, Berry.

What made you choose here? You can't find a more beautiful setting to get married! Gary and I always wanted a wedding outside of Sydney. From the bridal salon that the girls and I got ready in, to the amazing reception room, Jaspers, Berry was the perfect fit.

How did you find it? Just through looking online at NSW wedding venues. 

How was the weather on the day? It had been raining on and off all week leading up to our wedding day. Yet on the day, the weather was perfect! The sun was shining and it was the most beautiful day.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? No, we just new that we like the temperature at that time of year and Jaspers had that day feel so we went for it!

The Wedding Details

Theme? I never really planned a theme as Jaspers, Berry has such a strong look itself. We had a black tie feel about the look of the wedding as it's always fun to get dressed up! I decided to go with whites and rich greens for the flowers to keep it classic.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Gotta love Pinterest! I knew I always want a black tie wedding so I kept my ideas simple and classic.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? No! It was the one thing I didn't want to have to do anything except turn up and have a blast! Jasper, Berry did everything for me. They did all the flowers, the cake, the food ect. It was great!

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? I had my big sister as my Matron of Honour and my cousin (who is like a little sister) as my Bridesmaid. They were the best girls to have by my side.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Gary had his childhood friend as his Best Man and his other close school friend as his Groomsman. They supported Gary through the whole day.

 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Bridget looked divine in our 'Eddie' gown in Satin Twill. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I had worked as a Bridal Stylist before and had worked with Karen’s gowns and always loved the quality and make of the gowns. I only went to her store in Paddington and found the one straight away.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? In working as a Bridal Stylist I had sold other brides a Karen Willis Holmes gown.

How many gowns did you try? I think it was about 5 only at Karen Willis Holmes.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? I went to the Paddington Boutique and Lexy helped me find the one.

What did you especially like about your gown? I felt that old Hollywood glamour in my gown, I loved that it would never date and I knew that in 50 years I would still love it.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? The girls both wore Zimmermann dresses.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Gary got his tuxedo tailored for him from Oscar Hunt tailors and the boys got their tuxedos from M.J bale.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I got my headpiece and the bridesmaids earrings from Karen Willis Holmes, made by Stephanie Brown. My earrings were a gift from Gary on the wedding day and I wore the bracelet that he had proposed to me with.

Where did you get your shoes from? My shoes were from Nine West.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Trust in the people you have hired, whether that is the venue, band or photographer - they do weddings for a living are they are there for you. Also, take a moment on the day of your wedding to take it all in, the day goes so fast!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Trust your gut! Nine times out of ten, one of the first dresses you try on will be the one. Also, trust in your Bridal Stylist, they are trained to know the gowns so well and what works on different body shapes.

Something Old? My Granny’s hanky, she has passed on and it meant a lot to have that on the day.

Something New? My dress!

Something Borrowed? Also, my Granny’s hanky as it has become a family tradition that I will pass it onto my cousin when she gets married.

Something Blue? My garter and the little blue bow that Karen sews into the inside of all her gowns.

Suppliers

We tried to keep most of our vendors local. They were all so amazing and added something special to our day.

Photographer – Petal Photography. Rose's style is relaxed and fun and she made us feel so relaxed and comfortable on the day.

Florist - Jaspers, Berry. The venue took care of nearly everything! We loved their style of flowers and that we didn't have to look around for a florist.

Music - Soul Traders. I always love live music at a wedding and this band was amazing! Our guests couldn’t stop talking about how good the music was. Gary and I were both on the dance floor right until the end

First Dance - ‘Thousand years’ by Christina Perri but sung live by the band.

MC -  My Brother in law (who was amazing!)

Celebrant - Nina De BordeNina was so happy to create the perfect and relaxed ceremony that we wanted.

Cake - Jaspers, Berry. Just like the flowers we were so happy that the venue took care of all of this for us.

Hair + Make-Up - Ethix Hair and Makeup Styling. Yvette was amazing. Her calm and caring nature on the day made me feel so relaxed. She felt part of the family and my make-up and hair were perfect. 

Wedding Bands - Bachini Jewellers. We have known the owners for a very long time. It was so lovely having them help us design our rings.

Nikki Gown - In Stores

Posted on 06 Jul, 2017
Nikki Gown - In Stores

Introducing the new Karen Willis Holmes BESPOKE gown - Nikki. This stunning gown is hitting Melbourne, Brisbane, Alexandria & NYC KWH boutiques this Saturday! Nikki is a wide V-neckline wrap gown with waist tucks that elegantly drape over the bust and through the side split skirt. It features long, sheer georgette bell sleeves that are gathered perfectly into a deep cuff. finished with elegant covered buttons. 

Book your appointment today to try on this gown.

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT YOUR NEAREST BOUTIQUE

Melbourne - Book an appointment
Brisbane - Book an appointment
Alexandria - Book an appointment
NYC - Book an appointment

Rachel + Roberto's modern New York wedding.

Posted on 05 Jul, 2017
Rachel + Roberto's modern New York wedding.

Background

How did you meet your partner? Through a young professionals organization in NYC, Urban Green Council, part of the US Green Building Council

How long have you been together? 6 years

Do you have a proposal story? On our 5 year anniversary, April 28th, 2015, a picnic proposal in Tarrytown, NY overlooking the Hudson River, followed by an elaborate dinner at Blue Hill at Stone Barns.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? Saturday, March 4, 2017

Ceremony and Reception Location? Housing Works Bookstore in Soho, NYC. 

What made you choose there? We’d been to see an acoustic performance there and loved the unique charm of the space, the location off of a cobblestone street, and the surrounding neighborhood.

How was the weather on the day? FREEEEZING! But sunny!

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? 7 is my lucky number (3+4) and it was

The Wedding Details

Theme? We were very much inspired by the venue itself, with its Soho loft architecture – cast iron columns, wood floors, rich dark wood– and suspended café lights over the dance floor and ceremony nook. The bookshelves stay stocked during the event, adding some color and texture to the space. We went with charcoal gray for the table linens, ivory napkins, plates, etc. –and used a lot of rose gold and vintage/aged brass accents for the candle holders and décor. Our florals were mostly greenery, ferns, eucalyptus, etc. with some pops of ivory and jewel tones to complement the dark gold bridesmaid dresses.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? The space itself, and my love for aged/patinaed metal!

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Yes! I designed all of the stationery, menu/place cards, and welcome bags. I also hand-lettered the place cards and seat reservation signs, as well as the table numbers.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?

Jill Goldfarb, sister, Maid of Honor

Jenna Blind, friends since age 9

Allison Gordon-Lopez, friends/roommates/sorority sisters of Sigma Delta Tau

Groomsmen – who/relationship? We called them our Groomsfolk!

Charles Marino, friend and coworker, Best Man

Ruben Martinez, friend from college

Elizabeth DiLauro, friend from NYC

Flower girls – who/relationship? Catalina Interiano, Roberto’s niece

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Rachel looked stunning in our 'Serena' gown from our KWH by Karen Willis Holmes gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I wasn’t finding dresses I loved at some of the typical NYC boutiques; I came across KWH in the New York Magazine wedding directory and sought to try it out.

How many gowns did you try? Maybe 5 or 6. I had 2 favorites, but the 'Serena' brought me to tears.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis holmes - New York - Soho, NYC. They had 1 left, and it happened to be my size!

What did you especially like about your gown? EVERYTHING. The geometric beading, the strap width and neckline, the color, the train, the silhouette.

 

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Each bridesmaid chose her own dress, shoes, and jewelry; I only requested that it be a dark gold, and my sister (M.O.H) found the most beautiful dark gold with jewel-toned florals at Lord & Taylor. That dress also happened to be the last one in the store, and in her size!

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Suitsupply in Soho.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My jewelry was pretty simple – the dress had a lot of shimmery beading and I didn’t want to compete. I wore some simple rose gold Ralph Lauren earrings, an oxblood leather motorcycle jacket from Kenneth Cole, and of course my Anna Sheffield engagement ring and wedding band.

Where did you get your shoes from? I knew I wanted shoes that would be comfortabLe for the whole night while giving me lift and encouraging me to stand up straight! I found rose gold snake print heels by Seychelles.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I combined a couple of headpiece designs into a veil clip by designer Hushed Commotion. She has an Etsy shop, but she’s Brooklyn based, and she created both the customized veil clip and veil for me.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Be organized and ask for help when you need it – whether that means hiring a professional for some or all aspects, or putting your Maid of Honor to work on some tasks. Take time to enjoy the process, because it does go quickly, and lastly, read your contracts carefully – make sure transportation for any deliveries is included (lesson learned on this one!).

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t settle!

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. We tried to use local New York products wherever possible, including the welcome bag treats such as Beigel’s cookies from Brooklyn and Just Water cartons from Glens Falls.

Something Blue? My something old and borrowed was a lace handkerchief from my maternal grandmother. For something new and blue, my sister gifted me a dress ‘pocket’ with our names and wedding date embroidered, to be sewn on the inside of my dress as a way to hold the handkerchief.

 

Suppliers

Photographer – Ein Photography and Design Inc. – the most stunning photography. We are beyond thrilled that we went with this vendor.

Florist – Lindsay Rae Design. She’s an absolute sweetheart, creative problem solver, and creates beautiful floral arrangements that showcase lush ‘wild’ greenery with seasonal flowers.

Videographer – Just friends and family.

Music – For the ceremony and cocktail hour, we went with a guitar/cello duo, New York Ceremony Music. They have a well-curated and multigenerational repertoire; our feature songs were by David Bowie, SigurRos, and Bright Eyes. My husband created an incredible playlist for the wedding reception and enlisted a friend to press ‘play’ so he could enjoy the evening.

First Dance – 'You’re All I Need' by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell.

MC – None! We didn’t want the traditional MC experience, so we took turns with welcome/thank you speeches and the venue helped usher folks from one wedding segment to another.

Celebrant – Rabbi David Kline

Stationery – Designed by me, but printed through Paper Presentation in N.Y.C.

Menu – Same as above

Cake – Cupcake tower by Sugar Sweet Sunshine in NYC

Hair – Face the Day NY

Make-Up – Same as above

Wedding Bands – Anna Sheffield (hers) and Catbird (his)

Extra features – Our seating arrangement chart was done in chalk ink on an antique mirror by local artist Chris Barreto.

 

New KWH Stockist - Olive Jones Bridal - Edinburgh

Posted on 26 Jun, 2017
New KWH Stockist - Olive Jones Bridal - Edinburgh

We are thrilled to announce our newest UK stockists ... Olive Jones  This modern bridal boutique, located in central Edinburgh is now carrying a selection of gowns from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection and will have the full 2017 Karen Willis Holmes collection for the upcoming Trunkshow on the 7th-16th July. Email -  info@olivejones.co.uk for more details or to book an appointment and see their gowns below.


Agyness
Featuring a high center front neckline with cut-away low back, fitted bias skirt and all over embellishment with exquisite neckline detail. 

Anya
Sweetheart neckline with spaghetti straps, beaded bodice and sequin bias skirt and finished with a belt. 

Caitlyn
All over sequin fitted fishtail gown with v-neckline, cap sleeves & sheer tulle back with embroidery detail. Finished with a belt in the same design.  


 

STORE DETAILS

OLIVE JONES

Location - 77 Dundas Street, Edinburgh, EH36RS, UK
Website - www.olivejones.co.uk
Email - info@olivejones.co.uk
Ph - +0131 610 0242
Instagram - click here
Facebook - click here
Pinterest - click here  

Yanna & Christopher's Traditional Wedding

Posted on 20 Jun, 2017
Yanna & Christopher's Traditional Wedding

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband? We met through mutual friends

How long have you been together? 3 years

Do you have a proposal story? Christopher surprised me with a getaway to the Whitsundays. On our first night there he had organised a dinner at Clippers on Airlie Beach in their private gazebo. After ordering our meals, Christopher got down on one knee, of course, I said yes!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 27th Feb 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception) Where? Kogarah Greek Orthodox Church & Dolton House Sylvania

What made you choose there? The Greek Orthodox Church in Kogarah is very special to me as my parents were married there and my brother and I were baptised there.

How was the weather on the day? It was supposed to be raining but luckily it turned out to be a beautiful sunny 30-degree day!

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We wanted to have a summer wedding and just ended up deciding on the 27th and were lucky enough to have all venues and vendors fall into place once the date was picked.

The Wedding Details

Theme? White, lots of floral and silver.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest & Instagram were my main inspiration and sources


Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? 

Maid of Honour - Natalija who is my best friend of 23 years!

Bridesmaids - Kerri, Christopher’s sister,  Christie, my godsister and Patrice my cousin. 

In Greek tradition, the best man “Koumbara” plays a very special part so I wanted to include his partner Theodora. She stood by my side on the day, however, did not wear the same as the bridesmaids. I let her pick something special herself. 

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

Best Man - Billy, who has been Christopher best friend of 23 years

Groomsmen -  Andrew: Christopher’s Brother, Dimitri, My Brother, George, Christopher’s friend and Kurt, Christopher’s cousin. 

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship?

Flower Girls - Mia & Nikoleta (my cousins) and Savannah, who I nannied for 2 years

Page Boys: Xavier & Dion (my cousins).



Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Yanna looked stunning in our lace 'Annika' BESPOKE gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Karen Willis Holmes came highly recommended from a friend who also got her wedding dress from Karen Willis Holmes, and from the second I walked in the store I knew I was about to find my dream dress.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I did my research before coming in-store on Instagram and on the Karen Willis Holmes website

How many gowns did you try? 3

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? The Karen Willis Holmes Paddington, Sydney store. 

What did you especially like about your gown? The corded lace and the bustier were to die for, that’s what I fell in love with the most.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Shakuhachi

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Groom’s suit was tailor made by P.Johnson Tailors and the groomsmen's suits were West End by Simon Carter (Purchased at David Jones)

   

 

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore Samantha Wills earrings, a tennis bracelet gifted by my parents on my engagement. The bridesmaids had Samantha Wills jewellery and Tony Bianco shoes. The groomsmen wore different patterned Happy Socks.

Where did you get your shoes from? My shoes were Aquazurra purchase from Frwd.com

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Yes, a gorgeous lace cathedral veil by Karen Willis Holmes. 

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Try not to sweat the small stuff, it all falls into place in the end. And take a moment with your partner on the day to really soak in the emotion and atmosphere of the day. 

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Sometimes your dream dress can be what you least expected, keep an open mind and make sure the dress you end up choosing makes you feel amazing.

Something Old? A special brooch I wore on the inside of my dress that was from a monastery in Greece. 

Something New? My shoes. 

Something Borrowed? A horse show my aunt gave to me that she wore on her wedding day 40 years ago

Something Blue? The bridesmaid's shoes

Suppliers

Photographer – Wedding Soul Story (now merged with Cinemotive)

Florist – Willow & Bear

Videographer – Cinemotive

Music – Dj Tom Hyper

First Dance – Finally by Yasmin

MC – Tass Savidis

Stationery – Deciduous Press

Cake – Sinful Cakes

Bombonieres – Complete Creations

Hair – Veronica Doumit

Make-Up – Bernadette Leva

Wedding Bands – Steven James

Anna + Andrew's pretty Victorian garden wedding

Posted on 20 Jun, 2017
Anna + Andrew's pretty Victorian garden wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? Through ex-mutual partners believe it or not! We came together later on both single at a local bar.

How long have you been together? 5 years in total.

Do you have a proposal story? Andrews proposal was SO Andrew. We had arrived in New Zealand to visit some of my family, first stop after a redeye flight was my Grandpa, he had a big day planned for us so we promptly had a nap, then visited family friends where they have the most beautiful garden and I had always said I would love to get married there. Andrew knew this and took the opportunity to pack the ring in his pocket and to take me down to the garden to propose! Well, I didn’t know any of his grand plans and got chatting to Joanne the lady of the property in her kitchen, Andrew was pacing up and down demanding it was time I came outside and looked at the garden with him. My grandpa could see his eagerness so him and Tom, the owner of the property took him out and showed him around. Obviously not what Andrew had in mind, finally we all met up in the rose garden which runs along a gorgeous little creek, Andrew finally had me alone with him when we heard shrieks from the creek and Tom, who is in his 80’s was just about slipping into the creek – mission aborted and Tom was to be rescued! Time was of the essence we had to make it to my grandma’s nursing home for her Friday night drinks and bingo games! We hurried there and with the ring in tow ... finally, the end of the evening and we were driving home ... Andrew EXTREMELY quiet, we got home and he launched out of the car and hurried off very quickly inside the house. So much so that my Grandpa noticed and asked him he was alright, I said oh he probably was busting to go to the loo not worried at all. Once inside he had collected our jackets and was boiling the kettle, he said 'I think we will have a cup of tea outside and watch the sun go down' I was about to say I was doing something, he quickly said now and went outside and set two chairs up on the edge of the hill looking out to the garden, it really was very beautiful! All of 45 minutes later, great conversation was had and I was about to head inside when a few nervous mumbles of a speech asking me to marry him, and the rest is history! – typing this now I feel like yes I probably should have suspected all his behaviour was odd and that setting chairs up on the hill to watch the sunset in a beautiful garden should have given it away but it really didn’t, that was just Andrew on a daily basis – gorgeous and weird!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 28th January 2017

Wedding Location? Private Residence on the Mornington Peninsula

What made you choose there? The location was chosen to be on my parent’s property, they own 10 acres and have a beautiful garden. Holding an event such as their daughter's wedding was a perfect opportunity to showcase their beautiful property that they had put so much time and effort in and built from scratch in the past 10 years. I was extremely proud of them and it made it all the more sentimental.

What made you choose there? I love the concept of keeping the ceremony and reception all in one place, they had a perfect location for a marquee on the tennis court. I had always wanted to do a marquee garden wedding because then you could dress and style the area as you pleased, and no shutdown time so we could party all night long!

How was the weather on the day? The weather was better than you could dream of! A beautiful, warm, sunny day, but not too hot - we were extremely fortunate!

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? No real reason, we wanted a warm summer wedding, December was always going to be chaotic and one of my bridesmaid's weddings was in February so it had to be January. We decided a long weekend would be fun for those who have to travel from a distance so the 28th of January it was!

The Wedding Details

Theme? My style is very simple and minimal, so we kept it to white with touches of green foliage and copper.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest and Instagram are an amazing source for inspiration and ideas. I have always known I wanted the classic white with green, garden wedding and I was fortunate enough that I had a beautiful garden to draw inspiration from along with my Dads business ‘Fytogreen’ that supplies vertical gardens and has a whole garden nursery at my fingertips!

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? From the moment the property was decided as the location for our wedding we were all busy in the garden planting, weeding etc. you name it, preparing the property for an event took a lot of hard work, time and a group effort. A whole family affair! The plants down the aisle way at the ceremony were a vision I had from the beginning so months out from the wedding I planted seedlings into pots and nurtured with water and fertiliser most days. Believe it or not, I don’t have much of a green thumb but with Dad’s expertise they grew beautifully, I was really excited to have these little babies line the aisle.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? All our bridal party was our nearest and dearest. Each of them has been involved in our life in so many ways. We are so grateful to have friends and family like them. We clearly found it hard narrowing it down to we just chose them all!

Sarah Taylor – Maid of Honour, has been my best friend since mid-high school years, and our daughter Milla’s Godmother. A beautiful gem and a ball of fun. She was 7 months pregnant and still bent down to do up my shoes!! Best. Friend. Ever.

Jessica Barker – Another friend from high school years. She is my calming influence we just get each other, she is an absolute beauty inside and out.

Lucy Cahill – We grew up together living as neighbors, Lucy and her family have been a part of my life since I can remember. She has been a massive strength to me since we had our beautiful babies only 1 month apart from each other.

Angela Booth – My sister in law, a gorgeous soul and a huge support to Andrew and I.

Emily Booth – Also my sister in law, a beautiful bright spark who is extremely caring. It was very special having my new sisters sharing this moment with me.

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

Karl Lombardozzi – Andrew was unable to choose a best man so Karl was one of the groomsmen to give a speech which he did alongside Matt Dunne – an elite speech, they did a great job! Andrew and Karl have grown up together playing football since they were young boys, have had some great adventures and I would say most places Andrew has been or stories he tells has Karl involved in some way or another.

Matthew Dunne – Matt and Andrew have known each other since they were 12 years old. Traveled and lived in Canada together, he is an all round great guy and is also our daughter's Godfather.

Damian Russo – Damian met Andrew when they were 14 years old through cricket. He is a great friend who would do anything to help anyone he cares about.

Grant Masterson – Grant has also known Andrew since early teens, has grown up with Andrew through many stages in his life (oh the fashion!). A genuine great guy, both our families are very fond of him, he is like part of the family.

Kyle Docherty – Kyle lived with Andrew in Canada for a few years. Many funny stories and laughs they have had together. All of Andrew’s groomsmen are great guys, they hold a special place in both of our hearts and he is lucky to have such a great group of friends, it’s a real credit to him.

Flower girl – who/relationship? Milla Booth – our little angel who was just 1 year old. She was a little gem, cuddled into Aunt Emily’s arms throughout the whole ceremony watching on curiously without making a peep!

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Anna looked divine in our BESPOKE lace 'Annika' gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I have always loved Karen Willis Holmes since before becoming engaged, they were the first boutique appointment I booked and it was just such a simple and easy process.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Instagram and wedding magazines.

How many gowns did you try? Too many, I have lost count but my top contenders were all Karen Willis Holmes!

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes Armadale, Melbourne. 

What did you especially like about your gown? My dress fitted like a glove, I was extremely comfortable throughout the day/evening you could tell it had just been made for me. Not only was I thrilled with my dress and all its finer details but the customer service I received from the moment I walked into Karen Willis Holmes Melbourne was warm and welcoming and they went above and beyond to assist me and all my many visits (I think I visited 4 times before I decided on THE dress!!) not once did they mind. They were also super supportive of the fact I had just had a baby and was hoping to drop dress sizes throughout the coming months, I will be forever grateful.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? I had a set colour I wanted in my head so I actually bought the fabric from a fabric store in Melbourne and had a local dressmaker copy one of my favorite dress styles that I thought would suit all the girls (keeping in mind my M.O.H was going to be 7 months pregnant at the time of wedding) I was super happy with the end result, one dress for 5 different shapes and sizes was nearly impossible.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? M.J.Bale

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I kept it simple, diamond earrings for me and a coffee coloured teardrop earring for the bridesmaids.

Where did you get your shoes from? Mollini from StyleTread

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a teardrop cathedral length veil, simple and didn ’t hide the beautiful back details of my dress, this was from One Day Bridal.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? I would tell other brides to focus on the important items to them and not listen to other people's opinions, too many times I got myself confused or stressed because I felt overwhelmed and asked too many people's advice when I should have trusted my gut. 9/10 I went with my initial thought! 

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t have a set idea, the right dress will come and it may be completely different to what you thought you would walk down the aisle in but it will make you feel beautiful.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? I loved having Kate from Events By Kate, she made sure the day ran smoothly and was something I didn't worry about or that my friends and family had to worry about doing and everyone could enjoy their day without any stress! Because ultimately that’s what it's all about, a fun day filled with love, laughter and drink that everyone you care about is celebrating your marriage to the love of your life!

Suppliers

Styling/Planning – Events By Kate. Kate and her husband Mick and team did an incredible job setting up, and making sure the day ran seamlessly – highly recommend the team, especially for private property events they will take all stress and worry out of the day so you can enjoy yourself.

Photographer – Shelley Price Photography.  Shelley is super professional but laid back all at the same time, we were thrilled with our photos and on the day we hardly knew she was there, she was just like another wedding guest!

Florist – Cecilia Fox.  We loved all the arrangements Cecilia delivered, not one was faulted.

Videographer – Life in Light. I highly recommend Stevan, our wedding film was amazing, it really captured the love and energy from the day, it will be cherished forever and I am so glad we did this.

Music – Baker Boys Band and Soloist sister duo Maia and Sage for the ceremony.  Both parties did a fantastic job, we have used the Baker Boys Band previously and they never disappoint!

First Dance – Crazy Love – Michael Buble

MC – George Tothill, A family relative. George did a super job, he had us in fits of laughter, we still have people commenting on what a great MC he was, some even thought he was a hired professional!

Celebrant – Heather Boundy. Heather was marvellous, she ran with all our ideas and got our sense of humour, it also helped she was Andrews teacher back in high school!

Stationery – Simple Press

Menu – Moreish Catering. Elle’s menu to choose from was mouth watering! We were thrilled with the food on the day and her professionalism to making sure everything at her end was superb.

Cake – Regnier Cakes

Hair & Make-Up  Sophie KnoxSophie is a beautiful person, having her with us for the day getting everyone ready was just like having another friend there, not only is she down to earth but I could not fault her work, the hair and makeup she did on every single one of us was beautiful and natural. I was very happy with her.M

Greenery and Vertical Gardens – Fytogreen Australia

Furniture Hire – Place Settings

Marquee – The Marquee People

Photo booth – Shutter Hub Photo Booths

 

 

Dominique + Daniel's Hunter Valley winery wedding

Posted on 14 Jun, 2017
Dominique +  Daniel's Hunter Valley winery wedding

 

Background

How did you meet your partner? Daniel was the duty manager of the pub I worked at and hired me on the spot. We worked together for 6 months before he asked me out on a date.

How long have you been together? We got married a week before our 7 year anniversary.

Do you have a proposal story? We went on a picnic one evening at dusk, were drinking some red wine, and we began reflecting on how we started dating, nearly 7 years previous. I mentioned how he never actually asked me to be his girlfriend, we just fell into dating, and that was that. Daniel then said, 'Well Dominique, I know I never asked you to be my girlfriend...but I am asking you now to be my wife ...'

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 18th November 2016

Location? Ironbark Hill, Hunter Valley

What made you choose there? As soon as we saw the venue we knew this was the place, with the vineyards, chapel and reception on site, sandstone and chandeliers, it was perfect.

How did you find it? Looking through websites of wedding venues in the Hunter Valley.

How was the weather on the day? Very warm, 41 degrees.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? It was the closest date to our anniversary that the venue had open.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Green and white. 

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? My florist was the real inspiration for it all. She was incredible and developed many of the ideas herself.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? I created our invites and place settings DIY.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?

Alex Woloschyn - Sister

Katie Dowzard - Best Friend and my florist!

Tina Harridge - Best Friend

Mel Sturgess - Best Friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

Ty Hayward- Best Friend

Mitchell Finnigan- Best Friend

Luke Maloney- Best Friend

Jason Molesworth- Best Friend

Wedding Dress (the most important part!)

Dominique looked stunning in our 'Mabel' gown from our WILD HEARTS collection - in stores now. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? From the moment we were engaged, I began looking at gowns. As soon as I saw the 'Mabel', I knew this was the one. I still looked at many other dresses, but none of these compared to Karen Willis Holmes' designs.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Instagram, various blogs, friends that have worn KWH designs.

How many gowns did you try? 5 gowns at KWH- which were all incredible!

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington, Sydney 

What did you especially like about your gown? I loved the simplicity it held. I see it as a modern take on a traditional style.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Each dress was different, however, they were all purchased from David Jones.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? The suits were from Grand Frank Menswear. 

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? Each of my bridesmaids wore Samantha Wills earrings, which I gave to them as a gift on my wedding day. I wore a headpiece from Anna Campbell.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? The headpiece was from Anna Campbell, and the veil was from Grace Loves Lace.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Have fun and enjoy the process, you won’t ever get to go through it again, so don’t rush any decisions and enjoy the moment.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Go and try them on - they look far different on the models then they do on you personally. A dress might suit you more than you would first realise.

Suppliers

Photographer – White Lane Studio

Florist – The Botanical Workshop

Videographer – White Lane Studio

Music – Matt McLaren

MC – Mitch Garling

Celebrant – Mark McLennan

Stationery - DIY

Cake – My friend made this - Clair Mieluk

Bombonieres – We decided to donate money to Breast Cancer Australia, rather than handing out gifts to our guests.

Hair – Kristy Stead

Make-Up – Daniella Galla

Wedding Bands – Ocean Palm Jewellers, Wamberal

Dominique + Daniel  |  Hunter Valley Wedding  |  NSW Australia from White Lane Studio on Vimeo.

 

Amanda + Nicholas' romantic Sydney harbour wedding

Posted on 07 Jun, 2017
Amanda + Nicholas' romantic Sydney harbour wedding

Amanda & Nick held a romantic wedding at Sydney Harbour with their friends and family.  Amanda was after a soft, romantic garden themed wedding, with soft pinks, whites and peach tones set against dark greens in her blooms. For these art lovers, there was no other place they wanted to get married in but in the Habourside Room at the Museum of Contemporary Art.  They were blessed with a gorgeous, warm summers day with the backdrop of the harbour.  A true contrast to the moment Nick proposed to her - in front of an igloo in icy Finland. Amanda wore the Saskia/Selena combination with the Selena trains from the BESPOKE collection.

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met through our two mutual friends Jimmy and Ali. Nick knew Jimmy through school and I knew Jimmy through Ali who I went to university with.

How long have you been together? 6 years

Do you have a proposal story? We were in Finland over Christmas 2015, we'd just arrived at our Hotel in Luosto and Nick suggested we go for a walk up the mountain. It was getting dark (there's only 5hrs of daylight during winter) so we were about to head back, but we both spotted an enormous ice igloo amongst some trees. Intrigued, we stumbled over shrubs and snow to check it out. Nick was determined to take some photos of me in front of the entrance, then he raced down and stood in front of me for a kiss before dropping down on one knee and asking me to marry him.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 18.11.16

Ceremony Location? McKell Park, Darling Point Sydney

What made you choose there? Our reception venue was on the harbour, so we thought it would be great to transport our guests via ferry, we looked at a few different harbour locations. But one Sunday afternoon we drove to McKell Park and fell in love with how quiet, lush and intimate it was. Not to mention the fact that it had its own jetty for the ferry. It was perfect!

How did you find it? Our lovely Wedding Coordinator, Lauren, suggested it.

Reception Location? Harbourside Room, Museum of Contemporary Art

What made you choose there? That view! I also have a strong affinity with art and design and we loved the idea of being on a rooftop on a summer evening.

How did you find it? We were looking at venues around the harbour and the MCA just popped up and felt right.

How was the weather on the day? It was a hot, sunny 33 degree day, but it meant at night the balcony of the MCA was warm and balmy.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Flowers - Softs pinks, whites and peach tones set against dark greens. I wanted to go for a soft, romantic garden theme. Flowers were complimented by long oak tables, and eclectic white, clear and brass gold vases of various shapes/sizes. Place cards were an ocean blue watercolour to mimic the harbour colours.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Gardens and magazines.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? I designed our wedding invitations and hand painted all our place cards with watercolour. A special shout out to my dad, Mark, who made our wedding arch, it is something I will treasure forever. He also made our menu holders.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? My Maid of Honour was my sister Nicole and my bridesmaids were Ali, Jess and Katie who were all university friends.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Our Best Man was Nick’s brother Andrew and our groomsman were; James and Scott who were Andrew's school friends and Jon, Nick’s cousin.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Amanda looked stunning in the 'Saskia' Bodice and 'Selena' skirt from the BESPOKE collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I followed Karen Willis Holmes on Instagram and then went to the website. I loved what I saw and booked my first dress appointment at Karen Willis Holmes Paddington Boutique in Sydney. The 'Selena' was the very first dress I tried one, and all the subsequent dresses I tried on could never beat the feeling I had when wearing the 'Selena'.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Instagram, Pinterest, One Fine Day Wedding Fair, White Magazine.

How many gowns did you try? I probably tried on maybe 15 or 16 from 5 different stores.

What did you especially like about your gown? The way it made me feel, the organza of the skirt fell so beautifully and it was just the right amount of drama (I called it my drama dress). It just felt incredible and I felt like a bride.

​​

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Rodeo Show. I searched high and low for bridesmaid dresses and found Rodeo Show’s bridesmaid edit had a great range of styles and the navy was such a beautiful shade that went well with everything.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Andrews suit was from Hugo Boss, and the groomsman’s suits were hired from Peppers.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My necklace and earrings were from ByCharlotte. The girls wore their own necklaces and I gave them simple Swarovski stud earrings. The robes we wore were from Le Rose and their gifts were pink Mon Purse cosmetic bags with their nicknames embossed on them.


 

Where did you get your shoes from? My heels were from Sophia Webster, she has an absolutely gorgeous range of bridal‘ wing’heels. I bought them from Quincy in Woollahra. Halfway through the night, I changed into pink Reebok sneakers for dancing!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a veil from Karen Willis Holmes. 

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Limit how much Pinteresting you do. Once you start locking in your venue, ceremony location, dress etc you begin to narrow down the style of wedding you’re creating, there is such a thing as inspiration overload. Stand by your choices and have fun planning the best party with your husband to be.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t rule out any styles before trying them on. I went in thinking I’d buy a fitted lace number and I was so against strapless, but that’s exactly what I bought and felt amazing.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? We are so happy to have spent the day with our loved ones.

Something Old? A wedding poem from my Aunt given to my mum on my first birthday, mum gave it to me a few days before our wedding.

Something New? Shoes

Something Borrowed? Missed one

Something Blue? A little blue bow was sewn into the KWH dress which I thought was such a beautiful touch.

Suppliers

Photographer – Justin Aaron Photography, so wonderfully talented. We had a great Engagement shoot with him which made us feel relaxed and at ease for the big day.

Florist – Coralie from Wild Blossom, she was awesome and did an absolutely gorgeous job on our wedding arch, our bouquets and the reception tables.

Videographer – Tom, from The Story of Us. He was great, didn’t even know he was there half the time. That’s a sign of a great videographer.

Styling – Decorative Events they were so wonderful, patient and accommodating.

Wedding Coordinator –  Lauren from Audrey and Angus our day could not have gone as smoothly and we can not thank Lauren enough for all her hard work on the day.

Music – Soulganic, we saw them play live at Little Jack Horner in Coogee and I immediately emailed them to check their availability.

First Dance – Hey Ho, The Lumineers. It didn’t exactly go to plan, but we just rolled with it.

MC – Tom, one of Nick’s good mates.

Celebrant – Jessie Cacchillo, she was so lovely. After meeting with her we knew our ceremony would be in good hands.

Stationery – I designed our invites and had them printed by D&D Letterpress. Leah from My Creative Space designed all the hand lettering for the invites and hand wrote all our guest’s names on our place cards.

Menu – Fresh Catering

Entrée

Spiced veal tagliata on BBQ pumpkin, toasted organic granola & vadouvan dressing. Seared diver scallops, porcini butter, goat’s cheese rotolino & crispy kale.

Main

Grilled beef fillet, gratin potatoes, daube jus and roast organic chicken, parmesan polenta, walnut pesto & confit shallot.

Dessert/Cake -We had two glorious Andy Bowdy Cakesthey were amazing and delicious. The first was a chocolate fudge, salted caramel, roasted peanuts, chocolate mousse, snickers, chocolate cookie crumb and chocolate fudge drizzle. The second, a malted milk crumb, strawberry cheesecake mousse, vanilla butter cake, salted caramel, wild strawberry gel, baked cheesecake chunks, pistachio crunch & fresh berries.We had one for our engagement party and everyone raved about it, so we thought why not have two for the wedding. Cake toppers were from Grain & Co.

 Bombonieres – Delicious Jams and Relish by Drunken Sailor Jams (our friend Justin makes them). Flavours were Forest Fruits Jam, Pear Vanilla and Whiskey Jam, and Smokey Tomato Relish.

Hair and Make-Up – Liv Lundelius, gorgeous make-up that wasn’t too heavy, really natural and it lasted the whole day!

Wedding Bands – Protea Diamonds

Extra features – Bride and Bridesmaids got ready at The Langham Hotel on Kent St, one of the most beautiful hotels in Sydney, the staff were lovely and accommodating.

Photo booth  –  Photo Corner – they were great, we had an attendant there the whole time.

Hire – Sammy and Lola, we hired marquee lights, neon sign and vertical festoon lights. The festoons made for a gorgeous vertical backdrop along the wall of the MCA.

AMANDA + NICK from The Story of Us on Vimeo.

 

Highlight Vendor // Milton Gan

Posted on 31 May, 2017
Highlight Vendor // Milton Gan

Milton & Amy are the team behind Milton Gan Photography, a fun and lively duo based in Sydney, Australia.  Recently, Milton spent the day in our flagship store in Alexandria, chatting to all of our brides to be about their upcoming day.  Milton's fun and carefree nature brought a new energy to the boutique which our brides just loved!

Milton Gan Photography pride themselves on finely crafted wedding photography & believe in capturing your day with authenticity, love & creativity- exposing the special little moments shared between couples & their friends & families.  The pair clearly burst with creativity, Milton comes from an advertising background and Amy, from marketing in the fashion industry.  Milton's passion for photography turned into a full-time profession when he moved to Sydney, met Amy and the pair embarked on their incredible journey as Wedding Photographers 6 years ago.  Their attention to detail is carried through from start to finish- offering an end-to-end service complete with their clients being presented a beautifully crafted album after the wedding. They have established an incredible partnership with Queensberry, one of the finest album companies to help tell their clients love story.  Teaming up with such a prestigious company also ensures the quality of their photos are shown in the best light from start to finish.
Milton Gan has captured some stunning Karen Willis Holmes gowns over the years & below are some of our favourites.

GET TO KNOW MILTON GAN

Your Name: Milton Gan

Location: Chippendale, NSW

Business name: Milton Gan Photography


Amy & Milton, celebrating their own wedding

Let's start at the beginning. How did your business come about? After a long career in the London advertising industry, I moved to Sydney in search of my true calling. My passion for photography started to steer me in that direction then one day I stumbled across a wedding blog and was blown away by what I saw. In that moment I knew my future was going to be in wedding photography. I photographed my first wedding in 2010, went full time a year later, and met Amy (my wife and second photographer) the following year. We have now photographed over 200 weddings and are booking out dates well ahead of the rest of the market.

What inspires you? I'm constantly inspired by artists, entrepreneurs, and companies who push boundaries, challenge convention and continuously innovate. I’m also inspired by my wife Amy who, apart from being my second photographer, is also a consultant, educator and mentor in the fashion marketing industry.

 


Natalie in our 'Jacqueline' gown shot by Milton Gan Photography

How do you start your day? I’ve always been a night owl so mornings are usually a late start with a strong coffee, but after discovering yoga I’m trying to change my routine to start the day with an early morning class

What is your favorite thing about your job? Apart from getting invited to enjoy 40 weddings a year I also love being involved in the photographic and wedding industries. For the past two years, I was the NSW President of the AIPP (Australian Institute of Professional Photography) and I continue to be an accredited member and a competition judge. I also mentor and educate other photographers and regularly network with some of Sydney’s best wedding vendors to keep our amazing industry fresh and innovative.

What is your advice to couples planning a wedding? Whilst there are lots of traditions and cultural or religious influences that may try to shape your wedding day, remember that there are no rules and no rights or wrongs. It’s your day so have it your way and let it represent who you are. Your venues are usually the first thing to book followed by your photographer but if there’s a particular photographer you want you could always base the wedding around their availability - that’s what we did! And whilst I might be biased I would advise every couple to take their decision about photography seriously and invest in the best photographer they can find, taking into account their photographic style, their personality and the style of albums they offer. You want to feel you can enjoy having them around you for a day and can trust them to do their job so you can focus on having a fantastic day.

Favorite city? Paris. We love everything about it and it will always be very special to us as it’s where I proposed to Amy.

Anything else you would like to share with brides-to-be about your work. We’re acutely aware that most people don’t feel comfortable in front of a camera so our documentary style frees you up to be yourself and have the best day ever. We’re also aware that the day isn’t about us - no one decides to get married because they want to have a photoshoot! So we make sure the bridal party photo session is super relaxed and takes up no more time than is necessary so you can get back to enjoying time with your guests.


Penny in our 'Rachel' gown shot by Milton Gan Photography

VENDOR DETAILS

Milton Gan Photography 

Address - 2/3 Queen Street, Chippendale, NSW
Ph - 0424 531 368
Email - milton@miltongan.com
Instagram - here
Facebook - here
Website - here

 

Betsy + James' English Countryside Wedding

Posted on 31 May, 2017
Betsy + James' English Countryside Wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? 
James and I met in 2007 at work in England but didn’t particularly notice each other. We both left the company; James moved to Sydney and I moved to Singapore. It was only eight years on when James moved from Sydney to Amsterdam and worked for the same company in different offices that we reconnected. So fast forward to 2015 and James and I met up whilst he was over in Singapore for the F1 and the whirlwind romance began. At the end of the first weekend James wanted to talk about how we could move things forward, the second weekend he came back to Singapore, cutting his holiday in Lombok short, and at the end of the second weekend he said “this is happening, I’m putting my foot down, unless you say otherwise?”. We spent a month face timing for hours at a time and then I went to Amsterdam and things blossomed. After a weekend getaway to Bruges and a few beers, we said: “if this is what we think it is, who's moving?”. We talked about when we would want children, when would we want to get married and worked backward on a loose plan – by the end of the year James had moved in!

How long have you been together? 20 months (just!)

Do you have a proposal story? 
James and I went to an Indonesian island just off Singapore called Bintan for a long weekend where we stayed in a stunning private villa overlooking the South China Sea. James had booked me in for a massage as I had had a full on couple of weeks at work but unbeknown to me he set about putting fairy lights and flowers around the villa and chilled a vintage bottle of champagne. When I walked back into the villa there was a trail of candles from the front door to the balcony where Ben Howards album was playing. I wasn’t sure what was happening and wondered if James was proving a point because I had mentioned I didn’t think he was very romantic but then he was down on one knee and there was an open jewellery box in his hand with a stunning ring. 

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 30th March 2017

Ceremony & Reception

Location? Hedsor House, Taplow, England

What made you choose there? Despite living abroad, I had always wanted to marry in England. We wanted a location that wasn’t dependent on the English weather and being expats, despite both working in the creative industry, we wanted to minimise the amount of personal touches we would need to prepare and ship over from Singapore so we went for Hedsor because it was a stunning venue irrespective of whether you dress it up or not. The glass dome center hall used for the ceremony was also just so beautiful.

How did you find it? 
Honestly? For some reason, Hedsor didn’t come up in my various internet searches and nothing I had seen felt very ‘us’ until that point. I typed in my hometown into google maps and then switched the search word to 'wedding' and zoomed out – that’s when it came up. There was an open day a few days later so I asked my parents to go and facetime us to tour us around – so actually the first time we saw it was at 11 pm in bed in Singapore via face time. You could tell they loved it but didn’t want to influence us. A little while later I had the opportunity to travel back to England with work so I went to see it along with a couple of other options. It wasn’t ideal doing it without James but we didn’t want to wait long to marry and waiting until our next trip at Christmas reduced the chance we could marry in 2017.  James just said go for it so we booked it! Luckily when we went back at Christmas he loved it – phew!

What made you choose there? Aside from the above, completely coincidently it was also because my parents AND granddad used to go to Hedsor House when it was used as a training center at their previous companies – I didn’t know my granddad but everyone says what an amazing guy he was. So because the house had links to our family, it felt serendipitous to stumble across it again - my dad jokingly welcomed everyone to his stately home in his speech!



How was the weather on the day? Utterly stunning. Blue skies and unusually warm for the time of the year - it was actually the warmest day of the year and we were able to have reception drinks outside playing croquet (quintessentially English)! It rained on the day before and after so we were incredibly lucky!

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date?  We were offered two dates in March, the 9th, and the 30th. We chose the 30th because it would have been 11months since we were engaged.

The Wedding Details

Theme and where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? 
Acorns was a theme running throughout the day. My granddad said at my parent's wedding 'may these two little acorns grow into a great oak tree' (from the saying from great oaks little acorns grow) and it had become a symbol of family to my side of the family.  Even the house I grew up in was called little acorns! Hence loving the oak leaf detail in the 'Sophie' gown! The wedding stationary featured acorns, James had acorn cufflinks and my parents had even collected, baked and painted acorns in the previous autumn in preparation for table decorations. James’ family also collected damson berries to make his grandmother's damson gin recipe, which was individually bottled and given as wedding favours.  These favours doubled up as people’s name cards. We also had a basic colour palette of navy, soft greys, pinks and gold running throughout the day.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?  James is a designer so did all of our wedding stationary himself. The gin bottles were hand filled, applied and tied with homemade damson gin. Then beyond my dress being DYG we also had a lot of bespoke pieces made including my stunning bridal sandals from The Tui Collection, Singapore, my headpiece with oak leaves by Luisa Vass and James's suit from Private Affairs Tailors, Singapore.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? 

Jade. Friend

Karen. Friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship? 

Sid. Bestman

Walberth. Bestman

Andrew. Usher and brides brother

Andy. Usher and groom's brother-in-law

David. Usher

Tristan. Usher

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Besty looked stunning in a Karen Willis Holmes DYG combination gown- The 'Sophie' bodice and the 'Nina' skirt

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Karen (bridesmaid) and I took a trip to Sydney in July to visit one of our friends who had been diagnosed with cancer earlier in the year. We knew she wouldn’t be up to having us hanging around the whole time so Karen kindly booked some wedding dress appointments too and we were planning a really fun girly weekend. Tragically Sarah passed away one week before we got there. We were incredibly shell-shocked and numbed by the news as we hadn’t been expecting it at all but decided to go anyway, to spend some time with Dan, her husband and kept the wedding dress appointments. It was a pretty surreal weekend trying on dresses, crying and spending time with Dan. At times it didn’t feel appropriate that I was trying on wedding dresses whilst Sarah’s life had been so unfairly taken too soon, but I got it into my head that if I got a dress from Sydney I would have a little piece of Sarah with me on the day. I had tried on the 'Sophie' gown in David Jones but wasn’t sure about the skirt. I knew there was a DYG option so when I came back to Sydney a month later for Sarah’s memorial, I went to Alexandria. Hannah Kate was utterly divine with me – I think I cried about Sarah within the first 2 minutes of arriving.  Hannah offered me champagne (it was the FIRST time I had been offered champagne in my whole wedding dress experience, which was A LOT!) – when she gave me a small bottle to swig out of I knew KWH had just the right balance of classic with a twist, which is just my style. 

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before?  David Jones

How many gowns did you try? Being an expat finding THE dress was harder than normal. I didn’t find a dress in England when I was back and the sample sizes in Singapore were two dress sizes smaller than me, so it was pretty tricky. I think I had tried on the best part of 60-70 dresses by the time I found my dress.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? From the flagship store in Alexandria, Sydney.

What did you especially like about your gown? The full skirt, the slimming waist, the unexpected neckline (I always go for strapless) the oak leaf embellishments in the bodice… the unexpected lack of lace or tulle. 

​​

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Sheike – they did a country wide search for me and sent them to Bondi junction – a friend bought them for me and another bought them over from Sydney – it definitely helps to have international friends!

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits?  James’ suit was from a local tailor in Singapore. We opted for black tie so all the groomsmen just wore their own suits.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party?  A headpiece with matching smaller ones for the bridesmaids. Matching slave rings. Antique earrings borrowed from my mum. Fur shrugs in case it was cold which we used in the evening

Where did you get your shoes from? James is only a little taller than me so I wanted flats. I think living in a hot country and wearing sandals all the time meant I didn’t want just any pair of sparkly shoes. I spent HOURS searching and in the end asked Tui, a local shoe designer if she could make me a pair. I found some embellished beading which I thought matched the Sophie bodice and gave her a sample of the dress to match the leather and she made these stunning one of a kind shoes. I was given both an old and new sixth pence to put in my shoe for good luck so managed to stick these in under the arch of my foot too!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Yes, cathedral length from Britten

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? When you have your makeup trial, meet your artist with your ‘normal’ look. I met Sarah without any makeup on and said I wanted to still look like me. But I typically wore a reasonable amount of makeup normally anyway so it wasn’t enough. Give her a point of reference! 
Unfortunately, you’re going to have drop outs, so hold off confirming your numbers and paying the final bill until the very last moment.
Organise everything down to a tee, but let it go on the day and just enjoy it. Have all the family shots you want, you’ll regret not having them.
Get a videographer – it’s amazing watching it back!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Just like with normal clothing brands, you need to find a brand that ‘fits’ you. Every designers cut of the same silhouette is different so you have to just keep trying until you find something that feels right. Be open to trying on different designs to the ones you thought you would like. I started off wanting a bum-hugging V-neck lace cascading into tulle dress and ended up with A-line satin and not a piece of lace in sight.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. There are not many occasions you have the opportunity to be surrounded by those you love and we felt so blessed to have so many people to be with us celebrating. Both near and far, but especially those who traveled from further afield.

Something Old? Sixth pence piece

Something New? James bought me a bracelet

Something Borrowed? My mum's earrings

Something Blue? Flowers in my bouquet

Suppliers 

Photographer - Barker Evans

Florist - Ruby and Grace.

Videographer - Will Warr

First Dance - Steve Winwood - Higher Love

Stationery - James Bebbington

Menu - Caper and Berry

Cake - Melissa Woodland Cakes

Garter - Caroline Cole, Bespoke

Hair & Make-up - Sarah Yeo

Wedding Bands - Grew & Co

Nightgown -  Safina Dreams

KAREN WILLIS HOLMES BESPOKE 2017 COLLECTION - DROP 2

Posted on 25 May, 2017
KAREN WILLIS HOLMES BESPOKE 2017 COLLECTION - DROP 2

We are excited to announce that we will be releasing the second half of our  2017 BESPOKE collection in the coming weeks!  Please follow social media closely for exact delivery dates over the coming weeks.  

NICKI

Wide V-neckline wrap gown with waist tucks that elegantly drape over the bust and through the side split skirt. Long, sheer georgette bell sleeves gather perfectly into a slim cuff. Back is open cut and low.

PARIS WITH FEATHER COLLAR 

The embellished art deco inspired feathered collar worn with our Paris gown. 

ROSALINE/MARINA

Low, wide V-neckline with embellished tulle and rose motifs delicately appliqued over the fitted bodice. The nipped in waist falls into a slightly asymmetrical 4 tiered tulle and organza skirt with a webbed hem for subtle structure.

PARIS

Boat neckline, fitted bodice with elegant long sleeves. The back is fastened with delicate covered buttons and opens up to a cut-out, low back. It features a slimline skirt which nips in at the knees before splaying out into a full, elegant godet train. The feathered collar can be worn on top to add an embellished, art deco touch.

SHOOT CREDITS

Photographer - Kas Richards 

HMUA - Sophie Knox 

Model - Peyton Edwards 

Location - XO Studios, Brunswick 

Gowns - Karen Willis Holmes

Lucy + Callum's stunning Tweed Coast wedding.

Posted on 23 May, 2017
Lucy + Callum's stunning Tweed Coast wedding.

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met through a mutual friend on a beach holiday in Ocean Grove, a classic summer romance. 

How long have you been together? 5 years

Do you have a proposal story? Callum took me for a weekend away in the Yarra Valley. We stayed in a beautiful winery where we had a 5-course dinner, he proposed to me outside a beautiful little chapel in the vineyard under the stars.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 24th of September, 2016

Ceremony Location? Cabarita Foreshore, NSW

Why did you choose this location and how did you find it? We wanted to get married next to the ocean as we both love it so much. We had originally thought we’d get married in Bali but after a trip there changed our mind. We then moved our minds back to the NSW coast. The Tweed coast is so beautiful and we had gone to Cabarita Beach one day by chance. We were looking at locations close to our reception venue when we found the perfect location on the grassy foreshore with a perfect beach background.

Reception location? Madura Tea Estate, NSW

What made you choose there? The venue was so unique! It had a similar feel to a vineyard but much more lush and green. It also was in a valley surrounded by mountains, which I really liked.

How did you find it? I had seen the location on few wedding blogs that I followed and I just couldn’t go past it.

How was the weather on the day? Perfect. Sunny and 24 degrees, no wind. I couldn’t have asked for a better day

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? Not particularly, we knew the weather is usually quite nice around the time, which was what we needed for an outdoor ceremony

The Wedding Details

The tealight candle holders and welcome sign were re-used from my sister's wedding 2 years prior. The glass prisms on the tables were from Kmart and filled with Forrero Rochers for a sweet treat at the end of dinner.

Theme? The theme was a cross between Garden party and Rustic. There was a lot of green and white with gold and pink accents throughout our décor.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? I styled the wedding myself with some help from my mum. There was a lot of time spent scanning Pinterest pages and wedding blogs. Social media also played a big role. Following different wedding companies on Instagram gave me inspiration and helped to tweak my ideas to make the day more personal.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? All of my chalkboards on the day were DIY by a family friend saving us a lot of money. It was difficult to do a lot of DIY as we got married in a different state to where we live, meaning we would have had to transport it all.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Sally- My older Sister and  Courtney- My best friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Hamish and Angus - Callum’s two oldest Brothers. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Lucy looked stunning in our sequin 'Tulip' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I had seen Karen Willis Holmes gowns in a few online wedding blogs and I liked the general style and make of the dresses which drew me to the boutique.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Blogs/Magazines and online.

How many gowns did you try? At least 15 over 3 separate days

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? High Street Armadale, Vic

What did you especially like about your gown? I had tried on many other gowns that didn’t suit me and some just didn’t feel right. When I tried the 'Tulip' gown on I felt comfortable and it felt right, I tried on a few more after but came back and purchased it within the week as I couldn’t find anything quite like it. It made me feel elegant and sophisticated but also had a floaty feel which I really liked.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Review

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? We re-used the suit Jackets from Callum's brother, Hamish’s, Wedding 2 years prior. They also wore Sperry Top-Sider boat shoes, GAP chinos and shirts from Jack London. The bow ties were from The Tie Bar.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My dress was so detailed that it didn’t need anything to finish it apart from my earrings were from Etsy. The girl's belts were from Forever New, their earrings from Lovisa and their shoes from Famous Footwear

Where did you get your shoes from? My shoes are from Mod Cloth.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was the one-tier full length silky tulle from Karen Willis Holmes and my comb was from Etsy

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Try and stay calm. Remember that the day is about marrying the man of your dreams and everything else is a bonus .Any bride will tell you it’s easy to get hung up on the little things.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Keep looking, your dream gown will be just around the corner, where you least expect it. Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day.

Something New? My beautiful dress

Something Old and Borrowed? My grandmothers promise ring

Something Blue? My bridesmaids.

Suppliers

Photographer – Figtree Picture

Florist – Pollen Weddings

Music – The Wedding DJ (DJ Kristin)

First Dance – This old love- Lior

MC – Wesley Hetherington

Celebrant – Mine Forever, Melissa Fahey

Menu – Osteria Weddings 

Cake – Two Little Bakers

Hair and Make-Up – The Beauty Lineup

Wedding Bands – Megan Webb Jeweller

Trunkshow - Bella Bleu

Posted on 18 May, 2017
Trunkshow - Bella Bleu

The gorgeous Bella Bleu Bridal Boutique is hosting a Karen Willis Holmes trunk show, starting tomorrow! Owner Andrea Novak prides herself on creating a space for brides that is non-traditional & tailored to each bride's personal style.  It is an intimate and relaxed space where whoever enters is surrounded by fashion forward designs from local and international designers crafted from the finest fabrics.  
Located in Winnetka, located just on the North Shore of Chicago, this is a must-go-to boutique for brides in the area. Worth the travel too if you live a little further out!

The trunk show will run from May 19 - May 28 & appointments are essential. Sharing with you some of the incredible pieces that will be at Bella Bleu until the 28th. More details on this exciting event below this post. 


The stunning Bella Bleu Boutique located in Winnetka, Chicago, USA. Featuring plush lounges, warm wood floors and a calm, inviting environment.


The 'Agyness' gown


'The 'Caitlyn' gown


The 'Aria' gown


The 'Celine' gown


The 'Lauren' gown


The 'Cassie' gown


The 'Cindy' gown


The 'Caitlyn' gown


The 'Poppy' gown


The 'Nerada' gown


The 'Taryn + Camille' gown 

BELLA BLEU KWH TRUNK SHOW

Featuring gowns from the BESPOKE, DYG, WILD HEARTS & KWH by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES collections. If you have been looking at a KAREN WILLIS HOLMES gown then this is an event not to miss!

Address - 912 Green Bay Road Winnetka, IL, U.S.A 60093
Dates - 19 - 28 MAY 2017
Book an appointment online - http://www.bellableubridal.com/book-appointment/
Email - info@bellableubridal.com
Phone - 847-386-7406

Karen Willis Holmes BESPOKE 2017 Collection - Drop 1

Posted on 18 May, 2017
Karen Willis Holmes BESPOKE 2017 Collection - Drop 1

Get excited ladies, a handful of new pieces from the 2017 BESPOKE collection are currently in the workroom getting finished & we have news that over the coming weeks, they will be in Karen Willis Holmes boutiques nationally. Shot by the amazing Kas Richards, this collection focuses on new exciting silhouettes- introducing square cut V-neck ball gowns as well as fitted gowns with slinky skirts that sit close to the body.  The strength of the heavy twill in gowns like 'Taryn / Camille' is softened by soft georgettes, organzas and layered laces. The effortlessly cool hair and makeup on Peyton Edwards was achieved with help from the talented Sophie Knox, who we always adore working with.

Please follow social media closely for exact delivery dates over the coming weeks.  

LAUREN

Off the shoulder bodice with a delicate fold-over neckline that swoops into an elegant, low-cut back. The fitted skirt hugs the curves and nips in at the knees before splaying out into a full elegant train.

TARYN + CAMILLE

Low, wide V-shaped neckline with a corseted, simply tailored bodice in heavy twill. A wrapped, full skirt with a gathered waist and an elegant side split. Hidden pockets add a fresh modern twist to this statement gown.

NEISHA + HELENA

Bustier bra cup bodice with delicate embellishment and fine straps. The slim stretch base has a romantic overlay of souffle georgette skirt which is tailored through to the knees and splays out into a godet strain.

NEISHA + HELENA + TRAIN

The above gown with the addition of a detachable asymmetrical organza train that gently waterfalls to the front.

NEISHA + FRANKI

Bustier bra cup bodice with delicate embellishment. Worn with the 'Franki' tea length tulle skirt. 

PRIMROSE + PARKER

Soft hint of a bustier bodice with delicately draped lace and organza strips over the bust finishing into a fitted waist. The skirt is panelled in organza and is fitted to the hips before falling into a full hemline with soft tulle layers. The sheer, full skirt reveals an elegantly fitted stretch base skirt underneath.

BLAKE + MIMI

Classic bustier bodice with bust top stitching detail.  Worn with the slimline fishtail 'Mimi' skirt which features a centre split reaching just above the knees. 

ALECIA + NATALIA

Sweetheart bodice with delicate spaghetti straps. Mixed lace is draped over the bodice into a fitted waist. The skirt is panelled in organza with godets running through each seam. Fitted to the hips before falling into a full hemline with soft tulle layers. The sheer, full skirt reveals an elegantly fitted stretch base skirt underneath.



SHOOT CREDITS

Photographer - Kas Richards •  HMUA - Sophie Knox •  Model - Peyton Edwards • Location - XO Studios, Brunswick • Gowns - Karen Willis Holmes

Shadowed // Collaboration with Mauro Palmieri

Posted on 10 May, 2017
Shadowed // Collaboration with Mauro Palmieri

Sometimes the stars align and everything just falls into place perfectly.  This was the case when we recently shot this breathtaking collaboration with the AMAZING Mauro Palmieri. Mauro is not only a beautiful soul but a true artist with an incredible eye for detail and art direction. With a background in more than fashion photography, we adore his take on our gowns, showing them in all their raw beauty. 

Inspired by the transparency between strength and fragility, this collaboration highlights the delicate nature in which these two states sit. The soft elegance of muted sequins is juxtaposed against the use of strong shadows and negative space.
Heavily featuring sequined gowns with intricate detail that expose the high level of craftsmanship. There is an emphasis on the slim fit of these stunning gowns, heavily sequined to flatter all shapes. The essence of this collection holds an air of art deco glamour, whilst still being modern yet understated.

These gowns are available in Karen Willis Holmes boutiques and selected stockists internationally, limited stock and sizes available so get in quick.

FLORENCE - Fitted longline bodice with stunning beading and embroidery design, flowing into a soft georgette skirt and finished with a belt.

AGYNESS - Featuring a high center-front neckline with cut-away low back, fitted bias skirt and all over embellishment with exquisite neckline detail.

CAITLYN - All over sequin fitted gown with v-neckline, cap sleeves & sheer tulle back with embroidery detail. Finished with a belt in the same design. 

PEONY - V-neckline gown with sheer tulle back & centre back button detail. Richly designed with floral beading and embroidery on the bodice with a paneled skirt, fitted at hips into a flowing hem. Finished with a belt.

NERADA - All-over sequined halter-neck gown with low-center back and bias cut skirt. Exquisite beading detail at the neckline.

TULIP - Sweetheart strapless gown with a delicate floral beading and embroidery on the bodice. Fitted skirt at the hips with flowing hem and centre back gathered detail. Finished with a belt.

POPPY - Boat neckline with a sheer tulle overlay with richly sequined detail over a strapless bodice. Sequins disperse at the neckline & into the skirt. Centre back button fastening at the neckline and finished with a belt {Worn here with a train overlay} 

BEATRICE - V-neck bodice with A-line skirt, delicately beaded and embroidered and finished with a belt.

ROSALIA -  Sweetheart strapless gown with richly sequined detail over bodice. Floral beading dispersed at the neckline & into the skirt. Centre back button fastening and finished with a belt.

IVY - V-neck gown with sheer tulle back featuring delicate floral beading detail over a strapless bodice. Beading dispersing at the center back & tulle skirt, gathered at the center front. Finished with a belt.

CREDITS  //

Photographer – Mauro Palmieri

MUA + Hair – Sophie Knox

Model – Lottie from Viviens Models

Lara + Ben's stunning Hunter Valley wedding

Posted on 02 May, 2017
Lara + Ben's stunning Hunter Valley wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met in high school through mutual friends. 

How long have you been together? 11 years (this year) Ben and I got married after being together for 10 years.

Do you have a proposal story? Ben took me away on a surprise weekend which started with a beautiful picnic set up in the Botanical Gardens overlooking Sydney Harbor (which was when he proposed). He then took me down to Jervis Bay for the weekend where we stayed at Paperbark Glamping site. It was perfect.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 21.10.2016

Wedding Location? Circa 1876 - Hunter Valley

What made you choose there? Ben’s family have owned property in the Hunter Valley so we have been up there many times for weekends away which made the Hunter Valley an easy pick for us as we have so many amazing memories there and feel as though it is a second home. Circa 1876 ticked all the boxes for us. Ben and I wanted a venue which allowed us to have an outdoor garden style ceremony with a rustic feel to it. It was important to us that we had our wedding at a venue where we could have our ceremony, photos & reception all in the one place without having to leave our guest or our guest having to travel. We wanted our guest to be able to relax and enjoy the gorgeous venue while we had our photos around the property.

How did you find it? We were always looking at venues around the Hunter Valley but Ben’s sister suggested the venue as she had come across it on social media

How was the weather on the day? Perfection! The sun was out most of the day with a little bit of cloud leading into the afternoon which helped cool the temperature down to a pleasant 23 degree spring day, we couldn’t have asked for better weather.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? Ben and I have always wanted to get married in Spring so everything is beautiful and green, but it can get very hot in the Hunter Valley leading up to Summer so we wanted to do it early Spring which is why we chose October. We chose to have our wedding on the 21st as this is Ben’s favorite number. The 21st is also the date of his birthday so I am sure it was to help him not forget our anniversary ha ha.

The Wedding Details

Theme? We didn’t have a stylist and we didn’t really have a theme. I guess we wanted our wedding to have a rustic feel to it but most importantly we wanted it to be our own.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Inspiration came from a mixture of places from Pinterest to Instagram. We collected images and ideas we liked and tried to put our own spin on it.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? My sister Skye and I did all the table flowers and mason jar flowers for down the isle. Our groomsman Chad made all the wedding signs and my bridesmaids Sally did all the signwriting.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – My sister, Skye and best friend Sally Whatnall.

Groomsmen – Chad Wheeler and Mitch Brunell, Ben's Best Friend

Flower girls - Our gorgeous nieces;  Harlow, Indiana and  Poppy.

Page boys - Nephew , Te akau King. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Gorgeous Lara looked stunning in our BESPOKE 'Saskia' gown in BLUSH - in stores now. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I had seen so many beautiful and different gowns on KWH Instagram and loved the idea of the BESPOKE gowns. 

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? KWH Instagram & Website

How many gowns did you try? I lost track....a lot!

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington, Sydney

What did you especially like about your gown? What drew me to the 'Saskia' gown was the contrast of the lace detail in the bodice and the tulle aspect on the skirt. The tulle added a classic wedding dress feel to my gown and unlike any other tulle dress I tried on the tulle was soft and fell beautifully. The lace detail on the bodice of the gown added a soft romantic aspect to my dress which I thought suited our wedding perfectly. The moment I put the 'Saskia' gown on I fell in love with the colour. It was not white or ivory or any colour that I had seen a bride wear before and I loved that it was different and less traditional.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Show Me Your MUMU 

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? MJ Bale

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore a small pair of diamond Stud earrings as I don’t wear much jewelry and I wanted to keep it simple. My bridesmaids wore Samantha Wills Bridesmaids bar necklaces which I gave to them when I asked them to be my bridesmaids.

Where did you get your shoes from? Windsor Smith

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore flowers in my hair which the amazing Merrin Grace created for me.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Enjoy it

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? If you love it, get it.

Suppliers

Photographer – Justin Aaron

Florist – Merrin Grace Floral Designs

Music – Tillee Music

First Dance – Ed Sheeran – Kiss Me

MC – Kate Walker (Sister)

Celebrant – Maureen Stephenson

Stationery – Monique King (Sister & Graphic Designer)

Cake – Deleen Morrison

Hair and Make-Up – Chic Artistry

Wedding Bands – Aristides Fine Jewels

Highlight Stockist // Blanc de Blanc Bridal Boutique

Posted on 28 Apr, 2017
Highlight Stockist // Blanc de Blanc Bridal Boutique

Angelea, owner of Blanc de Blanc Bridal boutique in Pittsburgh, Pensylvania has one of the prettiest, most elegant stores we have seen! Stocking some of the most enviable international designers including KWH, we just adore their modern aesthetic, which sings out to the bold, daring yet forever timeless bride.  

The new store has opened its doors in an airy lofted firehouse, offering a refreshing, unique and non-traditional atmosphere for their brides.  Their mission is simple "to make finding your dream wedding gown an experience like no other. We understand that searching for the perfect bridal gown can be a long process, so we make sure that our brides have nothing but a pleasant and wonderful shopping experience. Assisting brides is not only our job but our passion as well".  Lucky brides in the area will be able to visit our Karen Willis Holmes Trunk show which will be held in this stunning space from April 28- May 7. See more details below this post.

Your name? Angelea Kuruc

Store name? Blanc de Blanc Bridal Boutique

Where is your store located? Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in a historical firehouse.

Tell us a bit about yourself and how you started your store? I have always been into fashion and design for as long as I can remember.  After going from my University in Fashion Design, I loved to New York City to work in the bridal fashion industry.  I scored my first job working with a Brooklyn independent bridal designer and just fell in love with the indie bridal movement and I wanted to bring a really cool and modern boutique to my hometown of Pittsburgh, PA. 

What does a typical day for you involve? I wake up, make a Nespresso and do a post on Instagram.  Take my dog for a walk then get ready for my day and head into the boutique.  Once I arrive at the office, I start by checking emails and meet with my bridal appointments for the day.  

Why do you love your job? It is incredible to have the opportunity to meet with brides and amazing women from different backgrounds.  I love hearing their love stories about how they met their fiance (e) and all of their unique wedding plans.  The best part is helping them find their perfect wedding gown that they will wear on one of the best days of their lives. 

What are your favourite KWH gowns and why? I fell in love with the 'Fontanne' gown because of all the intricate and directional bead work. That gown is truly a work of art and I am in “awe” every time I see a photo of the 'Fontanne'.

What is it your clients love about a KWH gown and who do you see as the ‘KWH bride’? My brides love how different the KWH collection is from all of the bridal gowns they see out there.  The KWH bride is a woman who wants to make a bold and classy fashion statement on their wedding day. 

Any great proposal stories from clients you have worked with? One of my bride’s fiance tricked her into thinking they were going to a wedding in Miami and he made a fake invitation and everything. He flew the bride's family down as well and he proposed to her with her friends and family all around. 

What are your tips or advice for brides searching for their gown? Stay true to yourself and the vision that you have for your wedding day. Choose a gown that makes you feel like the best version of yourself and something that you don’t want to take off. 

What is your coffee order? Depending on the weather, hot or iced black coffee.

Favourite city? Florence, Italy.  That city is just magical

Best way to spend $50? A bottle of wine or a few, some snacks and a night with my closest girlfriends. 

Best advice you ever received? Follow your heart and do what it takes to pursue your dreams. 

Anything else you would like to share with brides-to-be about your store and what you offer? Our boutique offers an intimate shopping experience for brides who are wanting a modern and unique bridal boutique. 

TRUNK SHOW DETAILS

28th April - 7th May - Featuring gowns from the BESPOKE, DYG, WILD HEARTS & KWH by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES Collections

28th - 30th July - Featuring gowns from the KWH by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES Collection

STORE DETAILS

Blanc de Blanc Bridal Boutique
Address 1806 Brownsville Road, Pittsburgh, PA - U.S.A
Ph 412.884.8000
Web Click here
Instagram Click here
Facebook Click here

Emily-Claire & Erik's stunning Swedish Wedding

Posted on 26 Apr, 2017
Emily-Claire & Erik's stunning Swedish Wedding

Emily-Claire and Erik's wedding was far away in Sweden, held in a barn in the woods.  August in Sweden is meant to be the best time of the year for weather but this stunning couple got the exact opposite. They were delivered one of the worst days in summer and rained the entire day.  However being in the woods, the weather created some absolutely magical photos as the couple meandered through the wet terrain, holding on to each other as they laughed and enjoyed their special day.  Emily-Claire planned the wedding from Australia which proved to be a difficult task but everything came together beautifully, with most of the wedding details designed by Emily-Claire herself.  The day was captured by Janneke Storm, who has an incredible eye for detail and capturing the small moments.  Emily-Claire wore the long sleeve 'Tillie' lace crop in a corded lace and the 'Natasha' skirt in georgette, a combination that is informal, playful and romantic, reflecting the Brides personality perfectly. 

Background
How did you meet your (now) husband? We studied together at university but the way we first really ‘met’ was on a ski trip in the Alps in France, we got stuck in a ski lift together.

How long have you been together? We have been together about 4.5 years



Do you have a proposal story? It was actually me (Emily-Claire) that proposed. We were out on an island on the west coast of Sweden celebrating our 3 year anniversary and I had planned a day of swimming off the cliffs and sun baking. I was very nervous and when I actually asked him I didn’t get down on one knee, I just asked if he wanted to marry me. He didn’t know if it was for real haha but then when he understood that I was serious he said of course! Then he actually got down on one knee and took a piece of grass and wrapped around my finger, so I guess in a way we both proposed. Then we drank champagne and went out for a super nice dinner and concert on the island that I had planned.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 12.08.2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Falkeröds Hembygdsgård, Grebbestad, Sweden

What made you choose there? We were actually living in Australia last year and planned everything from there so we hadn’t been to the venue at all until about 4 weeks before. We had always wanted a barn, something that would highlight the laidback and relaxed vibe that we wanted.



How did you find it? It was really hard to find a barn in Sweden that you could rent which is rather ironic since there are barns absolutely everywhere in the small towns. In the end, I remembered that my friend's sister had gotten married somewhere that I liked – so I went back on her Instagram account and tried finding it haha. I ended up asking her about a million questions about the place since it didn’t have a website or anything and is owned by the council. Planning a wedding in Sweden was pretty hard in general as its still a very small industry and we had to do A LOT of research ourselves and figure everything out by ourselves.

How was the weather on the day? Being in Australia the year before we had high hopes of a lot of it being outside. The ceremony was meant to be outside in the forest near the barn and we were going to have lawn games and mingling all outside before going inside for the dinner. Unfortunately, it was one of the worst days of the entire summer haha so it rained the entire day. Luckily we had the barn though that we could transform to have the ceremony, and then we had a little marquee outside where guests could hang before going inside for the dinner again.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We liked the sound of the date, the even numbers. Also, August is meant to be the best month for weather, the most stable month in Sweden but that didn’t really help us haha.

The Wedding Details

Theme? We had a pretty rustic theme since it was in a barn. We had a lot of greens (ferns, blueberry branches, and monster leaves) in clear & brown bottles and fairy lights above in all the ceiling. We also had all the guests sitting at different animal tables that we designed.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? I spent a fair bit of time on Pinterest, but a lot of it came from experiences from other weddings we had been to. What we liked and what we thought we could do better or what suited the vibe that we wanted.



Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Pretty much everything. We designed all of the printed stuff (invites, table numbers, menus, signage, etc). All the greens on the tables come from the garden/forest at my house in Sweden and we did them the day before. We ordered little bonbonnieres online (personalized stubby holders – they don’t exist in Sweden!) that we wrapped and put on each guest's place. Basically we gathered everything we wanted for the venue over time and then set it all up the day before (with help from our families, thank goodness). The venue was completely empty apart from a few old cupboards.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Caroline (sister), Eloise (oldest friend), Emily (old friend), Stephanie (old friend), Ida Kristine (old friend)

Groomsmen – who/relationship? David (Eriks best friend)



Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Emily-Claire wore the 'Tillie' lace crop with the 'Natasha' skirt from the WILD HEARTS collection by Karen WIllis Holmes

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Eloise, one of my bridesmaids had got her dress there so she gave me the tip to check it out.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Eloise wore one at her wedding.

How many gowns did you try? At Karen Willis Holmes I think I tried about 3 or 4. But in total I probably tried about 25 different dresses on.



Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? The Brisbane store (Paddington)

What did you especially like about your gown? I thought the 'Tillie' top and 'Natasha' skirt was very me. It was one of the only gowns that I felt really comfortable in that sort of reflected my personality. I wanted to have something a little different but still very elegant and pretty.


Fashion
Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? All the girls had different dresses. Some of the suppliers I remember were Lover and Alice McCall.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Roger David.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I had a flower crown made by my florist, and I also had a veil that I borrowed from Eloise that she had at her wedding (from Karen Willis Holmes). We all had simple pearl earrings.



Where did you get your shoes from? I honestly can't remember hehe but they were very simple.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Veil – Karen Willis Holmes, Flower Crown from my florist (Interflora, Grebebstad).

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Make it what YOU (and your partner) want. Try not to listen too much to what everyone else thinks/recommends.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Go with your gut. Get one that makes you feel beautiful, happy and comfortable so you want to dance!

Something Old? My ‘new’ wedding band is a vintage ring

Something New? The dress

Something Borrowed? The veil

Something Blue? I had a garter on that the bridesmaids got me with blue lace.


Suppliers
Florist – Interflora Grebbestad (she did an AMAZING job, I couldn’t have been happier)
Photographer – Janneke Storm
Videographer - Family
Music – We had a guy sing and play the guitar in the afternoon (Micke Loui), and then a DJ (DJ Babe Station) that played the tunes for the dance floor late into the night!
First Dance – Barry White – Can't get enough of your love
MC – Eloise Noakes
Celebrant – Sven Moosberg
Stationery – We designed and printed everything ourselves.
Menu – Same as above
Cake – My sister made the main cake (a traditional Norwegian cake) and then we had friends and family make other ones. It was more of a dessert buffet. And we also had a lolly bar.
Bombonieres - Etsy 
Hair – My good friend, Sofia Larsson was the hairdresser.
Make-up – Did it myself
Wedding Bands – Vintage shop in Melbourne.

Feature // Hello May Issue #16

Posted on 21 Apr, 2017
Feature // Hello May Issue #16

Hello May recently visited our Newtown workroom to catch up with Karen have a look around our beautiful studio. Issue #16 of Hello May has done an incredible 6-page spread on Karen Willis Holmes and how she has built the brand to what it is today.  We are excited to share with you some exerts from the interview...

What sparked your interest in fashion? I always wanted to be a designer of some sort.  It's a cliche, but yes I was always cutting up and sewing dresses for my dolls.  My sister would complain because every time she wanted to play, my dolls required a new outfit for the occasion.  
I made dresses for my little sister as well.  I can still remember the first dress I made her; I was about 5 or 6 and my Grandma had given me some navy polka dot fabric with white spots.  I laid my sister on some sheets of newspaper and cut a pattern around her.  I don't know how (and I remember my Mum asking what I was doing) but I knew I needed to add extra when drawing around her to make the pattern so it would fit.  Then I hand stitched the side seams together to create a little shift dress and my Grandma helped me make a belt using the sewing machine.

Well, it's safe to say designing is in your blood.  So when did you know you wanted to work in bridal? I worked for myself and another company while I was in Perth before moving to London.  I stayed in London for a couple of years and worked for companies specialising in evening and special occasion daywear. When I moved back to Perth I started a store designing evening wear.  During this time I started to get people asking me to make wedding gowns for them. When the lease finished on my store at the time I had to make a decision about what I was doing and where I was going to go.  My husband recommended I specialise in wedding gowns.  I don't know why I couldn't work this out myself and it took Geoff to suggest it for me - designing wedding gowns is perfect for me, I love the quality, the fabrics, corsets, trains...

Are you self-taught or did you study fashion design? I studied fashion design and manufacturing at Bentley TAFE in Perth.  I have also learned from different people I have worked with over the years, including one particular person I met while I worked for Arabella Pollen in London.  We would make sample patterns in the studio and, after the shows, I'd take them to this older gentleman and he would tweak them and turn them into production patterns which were masterpieces.  He had such a love and passion for his work and taught me so much.  I have always been interested in, and focused on a high level of workmanship and focused on job opportunities that involved this craftsmanship, which also allowed me to self-train. 

Talk us through how you produce your designs? We have four collections, and each one is made slightly differently.  Gowns from the BESPOKE & DYG collections are made in our workroom in Sydney whilst gowns from our WILD HEARTS collection are made in small production runs in workrooms across Sydney and our KWH by Karen Willis Holmes Collection are hand beaded and embroidered in India.  We source our fabrics from all around the world- France for lace, the UK for tulle and beading in India. We are proud that the majority of our collections are made right here in Australia.  

We are obsessed with our DYG collection- can you explain how it works? I was actually doing this concept with the BESPOKE collection for years because the gowns are made in our own workroom we have the ability to mix and match bodices and skirts from different gown designs.  The DYG collection is a more practical way to illustrate this concept- we have created samples (separate bodice and skirts) which brides can try on, and mix and match and customise the gowns they want- it is like having your cake and eating it too!

What is the best part of being a bridal designer?This might sound cliche but it is designing and creating beautiful gowns.

How would you describe the "KWH bride"? They want to look and feel beautiful on their wedding day.  They have an interest in fashion and know their own style, so they are after a gown with exceptional fit, a gown they can personalise and make their own with accessories or small changes, and they want a design which is both functional and fashionable. 



How do you balance creativity with running a business? I find running a business just as creative as the design process.  When you are growing a business you have to be open to change, and constantly evolve how you do things to keep up with the times.

Describe a typical day in the studio? I am a workaholic, but out of choice.  I'm very lucky that Geoff (my husband) supports me with the business. Mt work is also my hobby - I love what I do and I am very driven to create a bigger and better business. In a normal week, I work 6.5 days per week. During busy periods I will take my laptop home with me at night to do some work. Sunday mornings is my time off and I usually start work at 12-1pm. My day usually begins at about 8 am when iI will check my emails before meeting my husband for a coffee at 8.30am. I am then back at HQ either in the workroom designing and sampling the new collections, in the office planning tradeshows, overseeing the boutiques and working on all the paperwork and notes on new designs. 

What can we expect to see from your brand in the future? We are currently working on the aesthetic/interior of all our boutiques, we are opening a brand new store in Brisbane and working on plans for Melbourne as well.  We are also continuing to expand our presence in the US and UK. 



Gowns featured - The BESPOKE 'Jasmin' gown • The BESPOKE 'Alesha' gown • The KWH by Karen Willis Holmes ' Nerada ' gown • The WILD HEARTS 'Shima' gown • The BESPOKE 'Blake / Prea' combination gown with the 'Webb' cape

CREDITS

Photos Jack Steel // Cover image by Lara Hotz

Hair and makeup Liv Lundelius

Model Annabelle Harbison for Chic Management

Location Karen Willis Holmes Head Office

Production, art direction and styling Hello May Magazine

KWH Trunkshow - Paperswan Bride NZ

Posted on 18 Apr, 2017
KWH Trunkshow - Paperswan Bride NZ

New Zealand brides, you are about to be spoilt for choice! We have the Karen Willis Holmes Trunkshow visiting both Paperswan Bride boutiques to show our latest collections. Gowns from the Bespoke, DYG, WILD HEARTS & KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collections will be gracing the Wellington boutique from TODAY, and Christchurch shortly after. 

We have picked out some of our favourite pieces that will be in the showing, as well as some KWH brides who wore these gowns best.  More information about the upcoming Trunkshows including dates is below this post.  


The 'Lottie' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection // Worn by Kimberley (Photographed by Alpine Image Co.


The 'Antoinette' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection  // Worn by Sofia (Photographed by Cinemotive)


The 'Agyness' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection (Photographed by Bek Smith)


The 'Aster' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection // Worn by Annie (Photographed by Heart and Colour Photography)


The 'Nerada' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection // Worn by Katie (Little Black Bow Photography)


The 'Poppy' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection // Worn by Corrine (Photographed by Figtree Wedding Photography)


The 'Ellery' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection


The 'Leonie / Alexia' gown from the DYG collection // Worn by Abbie (Photographed by Ashley K Wedding Photography)


The 'Sophie' gown from the BESPOKE collection

PAPERSWAN BRIDE WELLINGTON

Address - 94B Upland Road, Kelburn Village, Wellington 6012
Dates - 18 APR - 4 MAY 2017
Appointments - To book an appointment online, click here or email the boutique directly.

PAPERSWAN BRIDE CHRISTCHURCH

Address - McKenzie & Willis Building, 181 High Street, Christchurch NZ 
Dates - 6 - 28 MAY 2017
Appointments - To book an appointment online, click here or email the boutique directly.

Bridie + Matt's stunning Jervis Bay 'glamping' wedding

Posted on 17 Apr, 2017
Bridie + Matt's stunning Jervis Bay 'glamping' wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met at about 5 am on New Years Day after some mutual friends invited us over to his house to watch the sunrise over the ocean. We woke him up and he came downstairs all sleepy and grumpy, but then we clicked and ended up spending the whole day together. We basically haven’t been apart since.

How long have you been together? A little over 9 years

Do you have a proposal story?  It has become sort of a tradition to spend the New Years period camping with friends, so in the summer of 2015'16, this is what we were planning. Unfortunately, in the lead-up, I realised that I had gotten the dates wrong and I had told work I’d need one less day than we had planned. 

He called my boss and fixed my mistake but made sure nobody told me. On the day I thought we were going home, Matt said he had an anniversary present for me and that we weren’t going home after all! Of course,  I was stressing out because I thought I had to work the next day but he promised me that my boss said it was ok. After a week of camping, I was ready for a real bed so I joked that he better not be taking me camping again, to which he replied ‘kind of'.

That afternoon we arrived at Paperbark Camp in Jervis Bay, which is an incredible ‘glamping’ property in the middle of the bush. We walked around for a while exploring. Well, Matt was actually trying to find a good spot to propose but it didn’t work out how he hoped ... The spot he had in mind (where they sometimes have wedding ceremonies) had been washed out by rain and so was at this time just a dirt circle. We moved on to the jetty, only to find some kids fighting over who’s turn it was to use the kayak. We ended up back at our Safari tent where Matt decided was the place to pop the question. The next day he surprised me again as he had organized both of our families to have a bbq at his sister’s new house. He had disguised it as a housewarming but then we surprised them all with our engagement.

     

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 28 January 2017

Ceremony Location? Saint Barnabas Church, Yarramalong NSW

What made you choose there? It is around the corner from Matt’s grandparent's house and we have always thought it was adorable! I also love history and this church has been there since 1885.

How did you find it? We drive past it every time we visit Matt’s family. His grandmother is also heavily involved in the community and this church.

     ​

Reception Location? Family property, Yarramalong NSW

What made you choose there? Matt’s grandparent’s property is a place that his family visits for weekends and special occasions. It is so beautiful and we have the most fun memories from up there. It is a special place to a lot of us and we wanted to share it with everyone we love.

How was the weather on the day? Very, very hot!! Over 30 degrees. (Too much praying for no rain!)

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? No special reason, we just picked one about a year from when we got engaged.

The Wedding Details

Theme?  Natural.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? The two major parts of the wedding – Tipi’s and Bell Tents – were ideas from my friend Jackie and Matt’s Aunty Jo. The styling of the wedding was pretty simple. Matt and I like to keep things pretty simple so just a lot of greenery and lighting. We didn’t want to take away from the beautiful space we were in!

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Matt’s dad built all the signage and shepherd hooks for the festoon lights. Myself, Jackie and Matt’s cousin Mitchell painted the signs. Myself, my sisters and the bridesmaids all helped my sister in law with the greenery arrangements. I made my own wedding cake.   

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Jackie, Madi, Emily and Shell, who are all of my closest friends. 

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Abba, Dom, Caleb and Ben, who are all of Matt’s closest friends. 

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? My cousin Summer was in charge of the wedding rings

 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Bridie looked stunning in the sequin 'Anya' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I saw a few pictures on the KWHBRIDAL Instagram and loved how beautiful but simple the dresses were. I am not an overly flashy person when it comes to fashion so all of the complicated lace and beading etc that I saw in other shops just wasn’t for me. The shapes of the KWH dresses really caught my eye and I thought they would suit me better than anything else I saw.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Firstly, on Instagram and then I looked on the website to see the full range.

   

How many gowns did you try? I don’t think too many. Maybe 5 or 6. 

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

What did you especially like about your gown? I went into my appointment pretty certain that I would get the Melanie skirt and a sweetheart shaped top with spaghetti straps. This was what I had imagined I would wear. I loved the combo when I tried it on. Matt’s sister asked me to try on the Anya dress and I was really hesitant. But I had promised my mum, my sister and Shani (Matt’s sister) that I would try on something that they chose. The reason I was hesitant is because I really thought I was not a sequin person. The idea was too flashy for me. When I walked out in it, I said “Damn it!” because I liked it so much. The next 2-3 months consisted of me changing my mind between the Melanie skirt and Anya dress on a daily basis. Finally, I brought my bridesmaids back to the shop and tried them both on again. Their reaction to the Anya dress and the fact that it would have surprised Matt (in a good way) made me let go of my puffy skirt idea. The Anya dress was equal parts nothing I would have ever thought I’d wear, but perfectly suited to me and my personality. Very confusing.

     

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? The girls all picked their own dresses from various brands. We had a Maurie and Eve dress, Misha Collection sample jumpsuit and the other two were bought off The Iconic.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Rembrandt

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I don’t wear much jewellery and felt that the sequins were flashy enough for me! So I wore no jewellery apart from my engagement ring. The girls all wore various pieces that they already owned, but I bought them all earrings to wear in different styles.



Where did you get your shoes from? Boohoo, for $43!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a long veil from Karen Willis Holmes.

   

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Don’t over search. Once you find something you like and would be happy with, stop there. Otherwise, you will get lost in too many options and get overwhelmed.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Be open to the idea that your dress may end up the COMPLETE opposite to what you had thought.

Suppliers

Photographer – Jason Corroto Photo - All I can say about this guy is that he is absolute magic.

Florist – Erica Anderson Florals – Poor Erica had to try and figure out what I wanted from an array of very different pictures I kept sending her. Mostly because I didn’t really know what I wanted. I ended up giving her full creative license and she paired our bouquets perfectly with the vibe of the whole day. I am obsessed with what she created for us! 

Wedding day Coordination – Days Like These Events – I literally did not think of one logistical or operational aspect of the entire day thanks to these ladies. They made sure everything was set up and running on time. So helpful and they really know what they are doing.

Catering – D’Vine Catering – Our guests are still raving about the food!!!

Videographer – Five Peas

Music – The Baker Boys

First Dance – Into the Mystic – Van Morrison

MC – Aidan Hayes

Celebrant – Claire Belford and Meg Cockle.

Cake – Made by me!

Hair & Make-Up – Beck Carroll

Wedding Bands – Matt chose a ring from Ryan Label & mine was from Natalie Marie Jewellery

Guest Accommodation – Wow Tents

Reception Set Up – KataLane Tipis – The team at KataLane are particularly incredible. They are the most helpful people and so nice. They did such an incredible job!!!

Furniture – The Wedding Designer

Claire & Daniel's picturesque country Victorian wedding

Posted on 13 Apr, 2017
Claire & Daniel's picturesque country Victorian wedding

A long, elm-lined driveway, the Murray river & an old Estate was the setting for Claire and Daniels summer Victorian wedding, photographed by Sarah Godenzi Photography. Since the two have been together, every summer has been spent at their holiday house nearby which made it an easy decision for them to find a winery in the area.  As the Estate came with such history, they really wanted to play into the heritage and let the venue speak for itself.  The wedding was romantic, relaxed and filled with soft complimentary tones of pale powder blues and greens.  Blue gum foliage and king proteas made up the arbor and lined the banquet table by florist Rutherglen Florist- as the couple's friends and family feasted on a delicious spread and danced the night away. 

Background

How did you meet your partner?  We met through mutual friends at a music festival over New Years in 2008

How long have you been together? 7.5 years

Do you have a proposal story? We had planned a trip to Bali with friends and decided to add a couple of days in Nusa Dua before everyone arrived. I thought Daniel was acting a little strange going through the security check but didn’t think anything of it (he was trying to hide the ring!) On the first night, we had drinks on the beach to watch the sunset. As we were surrounded by a few other tables, and not wanting an audience, Daniel came up with an excuse to go back to our room before dinner so that he could get me alone. On our way from our room to the resort restaurant, through a quiet courtyard, he dropped to his knee. Coincidently, it was 33 years to the day since his dad had proposed to his mum.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? Saturday, 4 February 2017

Ceremony Location? The Rose Garden, All Saints Estate – Wagunyah, North East Victoria

What made you choose there? Having a holiday house in nearby Yarrawonga, we have spent every summer on the Murray River since we’ve been together. As it is a location that holds great memories for us, we always knew we wanted to get married in the region. The first venue we visited, All Saints Estate blew us away as soon as we drove down the elm-lined driveway. We loved the history of the Estate and that it combined two things we love: gardens and wine!

How did you find it? We researched a couple of wineries in the region and although we had another venue in mind, as soon as we saw All Saints Estate we knew it was the one. With the Murray River just down from the Estate, we were sure to escape to the nearby riverbank with our bridal party after the ceremony.

Reception Location? The Great Hall, All Saints Estate – Wagunyah, North East Victoria

What made you choose there? We were after a venue that could accommodate both our ceremony and reception to allow guests to relax in between and enjoy some drinks and lawn games while we snuck off for photos by the river. The Great Hall was lined with historic wine barrels and festoon lights; guests sat on long banquet tables, which made it both intimate and relaxed.

How was the weather on the day? Perfect for North East Victoria, 35 and sunny. The Rose Garden was shaded in the afternoon and we provided a bowl of hand-held wooden fans for our guests, which they appreciated!!

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? We’ve always loved our summers spent on the river so it was an easy decision to get married at that time of year. We wanted our guests to experience and share in our love for the region and it was beautiful to spend our days before and after the wedding by the water.

The Wedding Details

Theme? We were after a relaxed, romantic theme with lots of native greenery to tie in with the location. All Saints Estate has such a rich character so we wanted to keep our theme simple and fitting to the venue. Our florist created beautiful blue-gum foliage garlands for the banquet tables and adorned our arbour with King Proteas and native foliage to match the girls bouquets. The girls wore gorgeous powder blue dresses with romantic, textured hairstyles and the boys had light linen jackets with matching pocket squares.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Instagram, Hello May, One Fine Day Bridal Fair and Etsy.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Daniel’s father Jeff built our beautiful arbour and Daniel made our card box.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Having a close bond with our sisters I always knew that one day they’d be my bridesmaids. My sister, Michelle was my Maid of Honour and Daniel’s sisters Kylie, Brooke and Sharn were my bridesmaids. To have them a part of our wedding was incredibly special to both of us.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Daniel’s best friend Heath was his Best Man and close friends James, Sam and Daniel were his groomsmen.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Claire looked stunning in our BESPOKE 'Gianna' lace wedding gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Karen Willis Holmes came highly recommended to me from close friends and family who wore KWH on their wedding days. I loved vast range of classic yet modern gowns, which extenuate the female figure.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? A couple of my friends wore Karen Willis Holmes to their weddings, as did Daniel’s cousin; each dress unique and equally as beautiful. I also loved the new range at the One Fine Day Bridal Fair.

How many gowns did you try? Karen Willis Holmes was the first boutique we visited; I found the 'Gianna' in the first hour of looking. I tried on about 8 dresses and 'Gianna' was the first one that I didn’t want to take off!

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes, Armadale VIC. Leana and Brianna were amazing in helping me find my dress. Having lost 10kg in the months leading up to our wedding, my fitter Enza did an incredible job in altering my dress so that it fit perfectly.

What did you especially like about your gown? I loved the delicate lace and modern front split; it was so comfortable to wear and so classic in style. We tweaked the original design slightly to create a ‘V’ with the straps, which finished the gown perfectly. As North East Victoria in February is typically very hot; with the anticipation of it being over 40 degrees, I loved the 'Gianna' gown as it was light, flowy and perfectly suited the location.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? The girls wore Pia Gladys Perey ‘Carla’ dress from White Runway. It was such a flattering dress that complimented each of their figures beautifully; the fabric was light, and perfect for a warm summers day.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Daniel’s navy suit was from Briggins matched with a paisley bow tie from TM Lewin. Dan’s groomsmen wore Daniel Hechter linen jackets and Industry chinos.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I have always been a big fan of Samantha Wills so I gifted the girls matching Bohemian Bardot rings and earrings. I wore some simple pearl studs from the Samantha Wills Bridal collection

.Where did you get your shoes from? Jane Debster at Myer. It took me a lot longer to find my shoes than it did anything else; as you could see them through the split in my dress. They were extremely comfortable (even when walking through fields of grass/over logs by the river!)

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My florist created a beautiful floral headpiece for the ceremony. For the reception, I wanted something to suit the evening so I wore the ‘Ava’ embellished headpiece from Anna Campbell.

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? I tried to book one thing per week, that way it was more manageable and allowed more time closer to the day to relax and enjoy the lead-up. On the day, take a moment to sit back and take it all in together; it’s not every day that all of your special people are in the same place. Enjoy your time together and dance all night!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Have fun and make a day of it! It’s not every day that you get to try on beautiful gowns so go in with an open mind and try on a range of styles; you never know what you might find!

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? We loved making the day our own, from keeping to some traditions and breaking away from others; it was important to us to personalise and tailor the day to suit. Having raised me, it was so special to have my mother walk me down the aisle along side my dad. In place of a formal reading, we had my aunt and godmother Moira read a children’s book ‘Henry and Amy’ by Stephen Michael King.

Something Old? My late Oma’s pearl necklace, which I wrapped around my bouquet

Something New? My dress

Something Borrowed? My grandmother’s engagement ring (tied to my bouquet) she wasn’t able to attend so it was lovely having a part of her there with me

Something Blue? My bridesmaids!

Suppliers

We felt extremely fortunate to have an incredible team of vendors, both local and those willing to make the trip from Melbourne; we would highly recommend all of our suppliers.

Photographer – Sarah Godenzi Photography.

Having photographed a couple of our friend’s weddings, we fell in love with Sarah’s candid and relaxed style. Sarah was able to capture the day perfectly, she was there for every big and little moment and we loved sharing the day with her.

Florist – Rutherglen Florist

Carla did an incredible job of our flowers and foliage; from our beautiful native bouquets, blue-gum table garlands and the gorgeous arbor decorated with King Proteas; it’s no wonder that Carla comes highly recommended throughout the Rutherglen Region.

Celebrant – Sam Watterson.

Having married Daniel’s cousin recently, we knew Sam was exactly what we were after in a celebrant. As a firefighter by profession and a celebrant as a passion, Sam sees people on the worst and best days of their lives. Sam was personable and ensured that the ceremony was authentic, real and relaxed.

Make-Up & Tans – Jessica Schifferle

I had been following Jess’ beauty blog for some time and was excited to hear that although now based in Melbourne, she was from the region. Jess was incredible and made everyone feel and look amazing!

Hair – S & Co Hair Styling by Shan

Shan did an incredible job creating textured, romantic hairstyles for myself, the girls and our mums

Music – Marc Lucarelli (DJ). Marc came highly recommended to us and didn’t disappoint! The dance floor was incredible and full from start to finish!!

First Dance – ‘Endless Summer’ by The Jezabels (Josh Pyke cover)

MC – Jayden Weatherley (Our close friend and Daniel’s business partner)

Event hire – Hens Teeth Trading.

We hired gorgeous timber benches from Hens Teeth Trading in nearby Tocumwal

Cake – Burnt Butter, Richmond.

As we love cheese, Lisa at Burnt Butter did a wonderful job in sourcing a cheese wheel cake for us. Not only did our guests love our cake, we also enjoyed it on our trip along the New South Wales South Coast in the days following

Stationery – CouturePress, Etsy.

Clare did an amazing job designing our engagement and wedding invitations, welcome sign, menus and seating chart. TheBritishRule, Etsy designed our custom illustration‘ Save the Dates’ which we just loved!

Bombonieres – KatrinaLouiseDesigns, Etsy

Katrina created gorgeous wooden laser cut nameplates for each guest, which added a personal touch

Wedding Bands – Holdsworth Bros Jewellers.

It was very special to have Tim and Carmen Holdsworth create our wedding bands. Carmen is my sister’s best friend, having grown up together it was so lovely having them involved in our day.

Robes – Le Rose robes.

They were so lovely and comfortable to wear. 

Kimberley & Simon's stunning New Zealand wedding

Posted on 10 Apr, 2017
Kimberley & Simon's stunning New Zealand wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? Simon and I met at one of my best friend’s 21st birthday party. We hit it off straight away and have been together ever since.

How long have you been together? Seven years.

Do you have a proposal story? Simon, tuned into his romantic side and hired a helicopter that flew us up to the top of the hills of a high-country farming station in Southland, NZ. When we reached our destination, Simon quickly set up a picnic with French champagne and strawberries. While I was taking in the beautiful view from the hill top, Simon quickly knelt down on one knee to ask me to marry him. We joked afterwards that I had no choice but to say yes, as it would’ve been either an awkward helicopter flight or a very long walk home!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 13th January, 2017

Ceremony Location? St Patrick’s Church, Arrowtown, New Zealand

What made you choose there? We wanted to have a ceremony that was traditional but also reflected us. Our priest who performed the wedding ceremony is a close family friend of Simon’s, so it made our ceremony that much more special.

Reception Location? Mount Soho Winery, Arrowtown, New Zealand

What made you choose there? We knew that our reception venue had to have a comfortable but elegant feel to it, and that made the most of the stunning Central Otago landscape. When we found Mount Soho Winery, we knew that it ticked all of the boxes. We live in Perth so it was a bit daunting thinking that we would be planning a wedding from another country but Janet and Edwin from Mount Soho assisted us in planning all aspects of our wedding reception, so it was a breeze!

How was the weather on the day? Lucky!! It snowed the day before our wedding and blew a gale the day after, but fortunately we had sunshine on our day!

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? Who wouldn’t want to get married on Friday 13th!

The Wedding Details

Theme? Classic with a hint of rustic.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest and lots of wedding magazines.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?

Maid of Honor – Bronwyn Cowie

Bridesmaids – Emma Johns, Amy Watson and Aleisha Restieaux. 

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

Best Man – Finlay Wilkinson

Groomsmen – Aaron Graham, Bill De la Mere and Andrew Fisk. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Kimberley looked stunning in the 'Lottie' gown fro the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I always knew that I wanted my wedding dress to be elegant and classic. When I first started researching wedding dresses, I saw some pictures of the 'Anya' gown on Pinterest and I immediately fell in love it. Straight away I knew that this was the silhouette and fabric that I wanted in a wedding dress.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Pinterest, wedding magazines.

How many gowns did you try? The 'Anya' was the first dress that I tried on and I instantly fell in love with it. When I saw that there was a new collection coming in I thought I would try the Lottie dress on to see which beading/sequin design I liked the best. I had my bridesmaid Amy with me and when I tried on the 'Lottie' dress we both knew that this dress was definitely the one!

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes, Perth.

What did you especially like about your gown? The sequins and bead work gave the dress a modern edge, which was a standout for me. I loved the elegant silhouette of the dress and how it fitted me perfectly in all the right places.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? The Stella dress in Ivory/Nude by Love Honor.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? MJ Bale, Perth.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? For my something borrowed I wore my mum’s pearl and diamond stud earrings. My bridesmaids wore Samantha Wills earrings. I wore a fur cape from Mode & Affaire to keep me warm during our location photoshoot.

Where did you get your shoes from? Wittner.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was from Karen Willis Holmes, Perth.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Don’t stress! Planning your wedding should be enjoyable and stress-free, don’t worry about the expectations of others as it is your special day.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Research gowns that have elements that you really want your wedding dress to have. Don’t be overwhelmed by what is on-trend at the moment, or what everyone else is wearing. Stick to your guns and choose a gown that you feel amazing in!

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? As the groom was waiting nervously for the arrival of his bride, an uninvited special guest made an entrance! A ginger kitten minced into the church from outside and ran down the aisle. Hilarity ensued as the priest ran to grab the cat but it had already decided that it wanted to stay and see what the bride was wearing. Eventually, with the help of guest's it was convinced to wait outside just before the bridal party arrived.

Something Old & Borrowed? My mum’s pearl and diamond stud earrings.

Something New? My 'Lottie' dress.

Something Blue? A blue ribbon that was sewn on the inside of my dress.

 

Suppliers

Photographer – Nat from Alpine Image Co.

Florist – The Flower Room.

Music – Jay Moore.

First Dance – We danced the Mumba to ‘You’re in my heart’ by Rod Stewart.

Stationery – Minted

Venue – Mount Soho Winery.

Cake – Cakes by Kim.

Hair – Claire from Beautiful Bridal Hair.

Make-Up – Juliet from J.E.T makeup.

Wedding Bands – My engagement ring and wedding band were designed and custom made by Naveya & Sloane. Simon’s wedding band is from Michael Hill.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Beth + Ryan's Woollahra Wedding

Posted on 09 Apr, 2017
Beth + Ryan's  Woollahra Wedding

Background
 
How did you meet your partner? We met at a Friday night young adults church event in July of 2014. Initially, I met him in a circle of ‘new people’ as he had just moved here from Atlanta Georgia. After that I didn’t see him for 8 weeks when we bumped into each other at a Sunday night church service, then our friend groups began to merge and then one thing led to another and on 10 November of 2014 we started dating and we’ve been together ever since! 

How long have you been together? We have been together for 2 years and 5 months. Two years of dating, 5 Months of marriage!

Do you have a proposal story? Ryan and I got engaged on 11 March 2016. Throughout dating, on the 10th of every month we would celebrate a ‘monthaversary’ (well let's be honest I made it up because I am super sooky and sentimental). On 11 March 2016 which was a Friday night, Ryan was taking me out for dinner to celebrate our 16-month anniversary. He told me we were going to The Bar at the End of the Wharf (where we ended up having our wedding reception – it was planned). He picked me up from work, took me back to my house, I got changed and drove us into the city. He pulled off at Barangaroo Reserve and said that we were going to walk over to the restaurant. At this point I was getting ‘hangry’ as I had just worked a 9 hour day, traffic was intense and I was honestly just tired so I initially put up a fight about walking because if you know me, physical activity isn’t my vibe. Reluctantly I obliged, still at this point very clueless as to what was about to happen. 

We walked along the walkway around the harbour at Barangaroo and he stopped us at this little point of the walk to take ‘photos’ I was enjoying the scenery and turned around and Ryan pulled me close to hug me, pushed me out just a little bit still holding tight onto my arms and said “Beth Victoria Ryan, I love you with my whole heart” then he got down on one knee (I began crying immediately and freaking out) and then he said “Will you marry me?” I said yes before he could even finish or before I could properly see the ring and we hugged and kissed and just dwelled in pure bliss. Unto my knowledge, Ryan had actually organised one of our friends to take photos of the whole thing so I have the whole proposal documented which is so special. After a couple of minutes of freaking out of excitement, I said to him “we’re not really going out for dinner, are we? I want to see my mum” to which he replied, “of course not, we’re going home for pizza and champagne with your family”. It was all planned. It was all perfect. After we finished face timing family back in the States we headed home to celebrate!

The ring was beyond perfect and it was my dream ring that I had wanted my entire life. The simple tiffany setting, 0.74 carat. Stunning. It was the most perfect evening. 

Another amazing thing that happened that night was that Ryan had actually already booked our reception venue in advance. So not only did he propose but he also took the stress of finding a reception venue out of the equation. We had loved/wanted the Bar at the end of the Wharf in Walsh Bay (which was right around the corner from where we got engaged) to be our reception venue so when he went and asked my parents to marry me, he told them about it, they all went and saw it and put a deposit down. He had serious confidence that I was going to say yes, and I’m so grateful for that. I am also the eldest of the kids in my family. It's me and then my three younger brothers. Ryan actually took them all out and asked them if he could marry me too which I just find to be so sweet and intentional, just like him. It was all perfect and I am so grateful. 


 
The Wedding
 
What was your wedding date?  27 November 2016, it was a Sunday. 

Location?All Saints Anglican Church, Woollahra.

What made you choose there? My dad is an Anglican Minister so it made it easy for us to be able to secure any church on a Sunday (if it fit with that church’s schedule). I had been to many weddings prior to my own where there were hours or long distances between the ceremony and the reception and I found it to be really difficult and hard for the guest so from the outset I wanted to make it so easy for my guests to not have to wait around for hours between both. So from the start, we were looking for churches in the Sydney CBD or Eastern suburbs that were beautiful, available and close to the reception venue. 

How did you find it? My dad just contacted other ministers in the area to see if they were available on a Sunday and we went and looked at it, within three seconds of looking at Woollahra Anglican I knew that’s where I wanted to get married.

Reception 

Location? The Theatre Bar at the End of the Wharf, Walsh Bay 

What made you choose there? Ryan and I love the ocean and being by the ocean, I have also always loved Sydney Harbour so we always dreamed/wanted to find a place that was representative of us and what we like to do and this venue did that and so much more! Plus Ryan is from the USA so it was a semi-novelty to have our reception venue in Sydney Harbour.  

How did you find it? I found it through Instagram honestly. I saw so many people going there for cocktails and dinners and loved the wharfs around it so actually in the January of 2016 Ryan and I went to check it out to see if it was a possibility and we immediately fell in love. 

How was the weather on the day? The weather was perfect. The morning was cool and overcast but by the afternoon, we got married at 3 pm and the reception began at 5 pm for our guests with cocktails and canapés then we arrived at 6 pm. It was the perfect summers day (without all the humidity) clear skies. It was beautiful.  
Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? Because Ryan was from the USA, we needed to find a weekend where his family was able to come out. So we planned for it to be the same week of thanksgiving in the States because most people can easily get school and work off on those days! That let everyone come out the week before the wedding, get over jetlag and have a week of family hangs! 

The Theatre Bar at the end of the Wharf is only available on a Sunday as they use it throughout the week for after shows. Apparently when Ryan enquired the weekend that we wanted was 26/27 of November because that was the weekend after thanksgiving in the USA so that meant that it allowed his family to be here and hang out and celebrate the week before so we got time with them before the wedding. When Ryan enquired there was only one available date for the rest of the year, 27 November 2016. Some would say it was meant to be. So he put the deposit down and everything else fell into place. 

The Wedding Details

ThemeMy attitude towards everything when it came to decorations or ideas for the wedding was ‘simple but elegant’ 
I really wanted it to reflect us.  I also love turquoise and peonies. I really just wanted everything to fit together and flow and it did which was a dream come true, all because of my Mumma. She was the most incredible support through everything and my parents really just made every dream/idea/wish of mine come true. I am so grateful for them. 

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Some inspiration was from social media and such (Pinterest is a dream), but I really didn’t have massive plans of what it needed to be. I wanted it to reflect summer, reflect us, and to feel elegant but still comfortable. I had a pretty clear idea of the theme and allowed my suppliers to really worry about the small details of making everything flow together. To be honest I think it turned out perfect. 


 
Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so, What? No, not really. Except we did write our own vows which meant so much to the both of us. Being able to commit our lives together in our own words was so so beautiful.

Actually, the wedding invitation/order of service sign is my design. The beautiful Rachel from Hunting Louise who did all my invitations and stationary brought it to life! 

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? All my bridesmaids are my nearest and dearest. Each of them has been involved in my life in so many different ways, are my biggest supporters, encouragers and just the loveliest women I know. I am super grateful to have friends like them.

Bryony Macdonald – She is my best friend and was my maid of honour. She currently lives in New York City but flew in for a week for my wedding. Best. Friend. Ever. 

Laura Collins – another one of my best friends. Laura and I met in 2015 and I believe instantly became best friends. She is the sweetest and was my honorary maid of honour as Bry wasn’t able to organise as much as she would have liked because of the distance. 

Thomasin Powell – Thomi is my cousin and another great friend. We have walked a lot of life together and our parents have been friends since forever. 

Groomsmen – who/relationship? 

Jared Miller – Ryan’s brother. He's a great guy, but maybe not the best person to have do a wedding speech haha. All in all, though it was so amazing to have him next to us on our day.

Sang Yun Han – Ryan’s exchange student/brother from Korea who moved in with his family when Ryan was in high school and just never left. He’s the greatest. Seriously never a dull moment with Sang.

Harrison Ryan – My oldest brother. A genuine bloke. And would give Sang a good run for his money as being the fun, loving, life of the party. He and Ryan clicked from the start and I know he considered it such an honour to have my brother in the wedding party!

Family really matters to Ryan, and I know he wanted people around him on our wedding day that would still be around us in the years to come.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)
 
What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? 
I had seen KWH on social media and just knew whenever it was my turn to get married I wanted a gown from them. Initially, I couldn’t get an appointment for a couple of weeks after I got engaged and mum and I went to some other bridal stores in Sydney and honestly didn’t have the greatest experience. One Thursday afternoon mum and I had just left a bridal store in Paddington and we walked past KWH and we thought let’s take a gamble, sometimes they take walk in appointments. That day they had a cancellation so it turned out to be just me in the store for the whole afternoon. The girls were beyond lovely and literally let me try on every gown I thought I could possibly want in order to work out which one I wanted. The first gown I tried on was my wedding dress but I believe I tried on 9 other dresses before I finally confirmed the first dress was my dress.

It was the best most stress-free experience and I bought my dress that day. It was part of the BESPOKE range so I just ordered it & the veil. Perfect. 

Not only did KWH have my dream dress, but I will always recommend future brides to them as they make the experience of picking out a dress something stress-free and truly special.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? On social media and Laura one of my bridesmaids, her sister actually got married in April of 2016 and it was and she wore a KWH gown. 
 
How many gowns did you try? 
9. But I ended up going with the first gown I tried on!

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

What did you especially like about your gown? I loved that I was able to make it my own, I changed some of the design, I lowered the back and had buttons rather than ribbon. 

I mostly loved that when I tried it on I felt like a bride and it was everything that I could have wanted. It wasn’t what I thought my wedding dress would be but I’m so glad that it was. 

Fashion
 
Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Zimmerman. My favourite colour is turquoise and when I saw these dresses in Zimmerman in the ‘winter grey’ which is basically turquoise, I just knew they were the dresses. 

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Jack London

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I am very plain when it comes to jewellery, I don’t often mix it up, I usually wear the same pieces. My mum was really sweet and got some of the jewellery that my nanny left to me after she passed away made into a necklace and earrings. I am very understated when it comes to jewellery and to me, less is more, so she changed my nanny’s diamond ring into a diamond pendant necklace and got her old aquamarine stud earring dipped in sterling silver to give them a fresher look. It was so special and meant a lot to me. 

The morning of my wedding, Ryan actually organised and surprised me with a single white rose, croissants, and coffee for all as well as a beautiful Tiffany bag. Inside was a beautiful simple bracelet that I also wore on my wedding day. (can you tell I love Tiffany?) I bought my bridesmaid's pearl earrings to wear. 

Where did you get your shoes from? Shoes of Prey, David Jones. 

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a cathedral veil which I bought it from KWH. 

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Chill out and don’t worry about what anyone else wants. It's your day so make it yours. Ryan was really good about bringing me down to earth a lot of the time. I really did just want to create a day of celebration that was about Ryan and I, so we just kept that in mind. What works for me doesn’t have to work for someone else and that’s so okay! 
I would also say don’t stress about having a long engagement just to give yourself time to plan the wedding, I did most of it all in the space of 2 months!


What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t take too many people it’s so overwhelming with lots of opinions. I would say take people who are really close to you and whose opinion you really value. I only took my mum and she was amazing and actually was so conscious and didn’t say anything until she could see what I actually wanted. When I tried on the dress that became my wedding dress we both burst into tears so we both knew.

It is an overwhelming experience so take a breath and a moment and if you find yourself getting stressed out or frustrated it's okay, you don’t need to make a decision in that moment but let it happen organically because that’s the best. 



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

Something Old? My Nanny’s Diamond from her wedding ring made into a necklace

Something New? My bracelet from Ryan. 

Something Borrowed? Nothing

Something Blue? My Nanny’s Aquamarine Earrings

Suppliers 

Photographer –  Jordann Wood. Jordann is a great friend of mine that I have known for a couple of years now and she is an incredible photographer and an even lovelier person. I actually met up with Jordann a couple of weeks before I got engaged because I was suspecting it was going to happen so I wanted to book her in asap! Jordann is the person you want around you always, she is fun and kind, sweet as ever, so talented and she really brings a calmness when she's around and she does that on the day too. She was perfect to have on my wedding day because she just gets it, she knows the shots you want to have when you look through your photos and she makes them happen. Especially capturing the atmosphere of what it actually looked like. Plus the photos turned out to be incredible!

Florist – Heather Halls, Gypsa Flora. I have known Heather my whole life, her family is very close to my extended family.

Music – We had a live band for our ceremony of a wonderful group of people from our church. 

First Dance – Coming Home by Leon Bridges

MC – Hemant Raval. I grew up next door to the Ravals in Sydney and my parents have been friends with them for as long as I can remember. Hemant and Ryan really clicked when we started dating and so we wanted someone who was fun and that knew me my whole life. They’re a wonderful family and I am grateful they’re in my world. 

Celebrant – David Crafts and Ross Ryan. As my dad is an Anglican Minister I always wanted my dad to marry me because I have always seen it as such a privilege that I could have that! But I was also conscious that I wanted my dad to enjoy being the father of the bride and all that comes with that so we got David Crafts who is a pastor at our church who did our marriage counselling and knows Ryan and I personally as well to lead the service through to the vows and then my dad took over. It was so special. 

Stationery – Hunting Louise – Rachel was so sweet. She is an amazing designer and I saw some of her work and really wanted to work with her. I had a design that I wanted to come to life and she made it happen. She was very professional and helpful along the way. We were so happy with the outcome of all our stationary from the wedding and its now all sitting on our fridge as a beautiful reminder! 

Menu – The Bar at the End of the Wharf is catered by Fresh Catering. We were able to choose a menu package and to do a wedding tasting so we could pick our menu and the food was incredible. A lot of our guests on the day raved about the food. 

Cake – The cake was from Paper and Poppies in Caringbah. I had seen some of their cakes on social media and again sent them what I was after and they made it happen! It was so beautifully done. We had a semi-naked cake which was chocolate cake with vanilla frosting. Delicious. 

Bombonieres -  We had candles for every guest. A beautiful lady and her husband from my parent's church started a candle company called Dux located in Circular Quay and we got them to make little candles for our guest. Each candle had our wedding design on a sticker and a bible verse. It was perfect. They are the sweetest most generous individuals I know, so professional and their candles are divine! Such a treasured memory. 

Make up  & Hair – Both hair and make up was done by Lauren Goth. I found her through facebook as she had done another friends’ sisters wedding. Lauren is so professional and lovely. I did my trial at her house and she just knows what she is doing. I was able to talk to Lauren about what I wanted, which was to be really natural and elegant. I didn’t want anything over the top or crazy and she really listened. She is so talented and such a joy to work with. On the actual wedding day, she was a dream and it was lovely to share it with her! I was thrilled with how my hair and makeup was. It was exactly what I wanted. 

Wedding Bands – Tiffany and Co. My favourite.
 

Highlight Vendor // Photographer Bonnie Jenkins

Posted on 07 Apr, 2017
Highlight Vendor // Photographer Bonnie Jenkins

We took a few minutes to have a chat to Bonnie Jenkins, a photographer from the Sunshine Coast who we recently invited to shoot the opening of our beautiful new store in Paddington, Brisbane. On top of that, she also shot the magical wedding of Robyn & Whitney, who was a Karen Willis Holmes bride wearing our 'Saskia' gown. Their wedding was natural, candid, full of love, laughter and of course, colour. Jenkins' style of photography captured this perfectly. For those lucky enough to live near the Sunshine Coast, she is a photographer one must consider booking for their wedding day. Thank you for your time and generosity, Bonnie!

Your name? Bonnie Jenkins



Business name? Bonnie Jenkins Photography


Where is your business located? Sunshine Coast

Tell us a bit about yourself, your company & how everything began. 
Born and raised in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, I started my photography career in 1999 studying a diploma of photography then going on to complete a bachelor in Photography at Queensland College of Art, which gave me the opportunity to study abroad at Edinburgh College of Art. In 2008 I expanded my visual art practice completing a Masters in Visual Arts at Falmouth University College, Cornwall, UK.
After several years of teaching photography, I am now focusing full-time as a freelance photographer. I am experienced and interested in many genres of photography and video, including fashion, weddings, fine art and travel. I like to keep a good balance in my work to ensure I have time to pursue all my areas of interest. 



What does a typical day for you involve? After a cuppa, I go for a long walk along the country roads surrounding my home. 
This first part is about the only typical thing I do every day, after that it could be anything, which is partly why I love my job. Often it could involve sitting at the computer editing and prepping for shoots, or it could involve location scouting, meetings or shooting.

Why do you love your job? I get to work in beautiful areas all over the world and meet so many different people, and I get to photograph the things we celebrate in life. I simply love location scouting, it means you really get to know the landscape of different areas, you see so much more than if you were just doing the ‘tourist’ thing, but this also applies to my surroundings at home, I love discovering and exploring new areas. Most of my clients know that I love to get amongst nature for the shot. I feel so lucky to have a job that allows me to express my creativity but also explore the world. 
I love that photography can capture people's imagination as it can give vision to things we can only imagine or see in our peripheral. 



Where do you find your inspiration? Nature and experimentation

. 

Any great stories from clients you have worked with? Getting flown up via helicopter to a private Alpine Lake in Wanaka, New Zealand, overlooking the Mt Aspiring mountain ranges was a once in a lifetime moment.  
I find that I become friends with a lot of people I work with which is great.

What are your tips or advice for couples planning their wedding? Think outside the box, don’t worry too much about tradition if it isn’t what you want to do. The times of ‘what you should do’ at weddings are gone these days so just include the traditions that have meaning to you. Don’t forget to have fun.



What is your coffee order? Long Black

Favourite city?
Oh wow, such a hard question, I like them for different reasons. 
London for its old world charm 
Berlin for its art culture
Reykjavik- because I just love Iceland as a whole
Paris- some great memories from here
Oh sorry, I can’t answer this question, there are too many… 

Best way to spend $50? Buying amazing ingredients to make a big delicious meal for my friends. 



Best advice you ever received? When it comes to your art, you can’t please everyone so just be true to yourself.

Anything else you would like to share with brides-to-be about your work? I feel extremely lucky to have learned photography back when it was all analog. The hours and sometimes days spent in the darkroom perfecting one image has given me a great respect for photography as a medium. 

PHOTOGRAPHER DETAILS

Bonnie Jenkins
Ph -
 +61417 742 542
Email - Click here
Website - Click here
Facebook - Click here 
Instagram - Click here 
Vimeo - Click here

Karen Willis Holmes Fall 2017 Collection

Posted on 04 Apr, 2017
Karen Willis Holmes Fall 2017 Collection

We are now excited to share with you the full shoot for the Karen Willis Holmes Fall 2017 collection shot by Sophie Thompson

Adding to the solid foundation of our 2016 Design Your Gown collection, a strong focus again has been placed on versatility for brides. With an array of bodices and skirts mixed and matched seamlessly, and beautiful overlays and trains that can be styled with any number of slip options all to accentuate the female form. The epitome of romantic, this ethereal collection features beautiful laces, flowing georgettes, delicate floral embroidery, and hints of nude tulle.

Put together by the incredibly talented Tanya from Oh Flora Studio, this shoot's large floral installation 'growing' from the floor and the walls created a botanical wonderland in shades of pastel pinks, apricots, ever so pale blushes & stronger crimsons, perfectly balanced with the subtle heaviness of greenery in the foliage. This stunning backdrop perfectly reflected this romantic collection. 

Presenting....

The BESPOKE 'Ainsley' gown



The BESPOKE 'Angela' gown worn with the 'Diamond trains' 



The BESPOKE 'Alesha' gown

The WILD HEARTS 'Azelea' gown

The WILD HEARTS 'Claudine' gown

'Demi' Bodice & 'Joni' Skirt {last pic worn with the 'Webb' cape} 




The Wild Hearts 'Ellie' gown



The BESPOKE 'Olivia' gown 



The DYG 'Oriel' + 'Kelsey' gown

The BESPOKE 'Ophelia' gown

The DYG 'Jessie' & 'Catriona' gown

The BESPOKE 'Lauren' gown

The WILD HEARTS 'Pascale' gown



The 'Mariko' gown 

The BESPOKE 'Layne' gown

The BESPOKE 'Neisha' gown worn with the 'Frankie' skirt



The WILD HEARTS 'Rose' gown 

The WILD HEARTS 'Rosemary' gown



SHOOT CREDITS

Photographer Sophie Thompson
MUA Rachel Pitt -The Makeup Society
Hair Kayla Trisley & Veronika Moreira 
Florist/styling Oh Flora Studio
Model Jemma Barge 

Hayley and Sam's romantic Hunter Valley wedding

Posted on 03 Apr, 2017
Hayley and Sam's romantic Hunter Valley wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? I first met Sam at a youth camp.

How long have you been together? 1 ½ years

Do you have a proposal story? Do I ever! It was my 21st birthday and little did I know what he had in mind. Unbeknownst to me, he had asked my dad if he could marry me and was secretly planning a trip to Paris. It was the day after my birthday party and we were heading down to Sydney to have dinner with my sister in law and her husband, Kelly and Paul. After dinner, I thought we were heading back to Kelly and Paul’s however, Paul pulled into the international airport in Sydney! I was in the back seat with Sam and he gave me an envelope and told me to open it, in the confusion I didn’t understand what I was reading but in my hand was the itinerary for our flights to Paris! Somehow he had managed to organise my leave from work and my luggage all without me suspecting a thing. We had been in Paris for a week when he asked if I would like to go shopping and buy an outfit for dinner. Sam had mentioned to me on the way, that we may be able to see the Eiffel Tower from the restaurant, little did I know till we arrived that he had a reservation at 58 Tour Eiffel. After our main meal we went out onto the balcony to look at the view. Sam asked me to turn around to take a picture, I wondered why he wanted to take a photo of the back of me and when I turned around he was on one knee holding my ring. He asked me to marry him and obviously, I said YES!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 17th December 2016

Ceremony Location? Hunter Valley Gardens, Pokolbin

What made you choose there? We wanted an outside ceremony and the gardens were perfect for this.

How did you find it? I have visited the gardens previously and knew that they held weddings there.

Reception Location? Pokolbin Hall

What made you choose there? It was close to the ceremony and perfect size hall for the number of guests.

How did you find it? Word of mouth

How was the weather on the day? The weather was very hot for the ceremony but luckily had cooled off by the time of the reception.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? We started dating on the 17th, got engaged on the 17th so when the 17th of December was on a Saturday we chose that date. This also suited family who were travelling from overseas and our work commitments.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Brie Nugent- Childhood friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Adin Sermon- Good Friend

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Hayley looked stunning in our BESPOKE 'Selena' gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? On my sister in laws recommendation

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Instagram

How many gowns did you try? Approximately 30 dresses

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes Paddington

What did you especially like about your gown? EVERYTHING! I absolutely loved the skirt layers and the lace bodice.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? A formal dress shop in Newcastle

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? RDX Roger David

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? We had matching ties and pocket squares for the men. Sam’s was ivory and Adin’s was dark blue which tied in with the bridesmaids dress. Brie and myself kept things simple, I just wore drop earrings and Brie wore round studs and a bangle.

Where did you get your shoes from? Wittner

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was from Karen Willis Holmes, it was a gift from Sam’s family. I also had a small flower arrangement in my hair.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Write a list of photo’s that you want the photographer to take and be specific. Appreciate every moment of the day and don’t sweat the small stuff!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? You only get one day to wear a fabulous gown so don’t hold back on choosing the one that you absolutely love.

Something Old? I borrowed an antique brooch from a friend that I attached to my bouquet. This was my ‘something old, something borrowed and something blue’

Something New? My gown and everything else.

Suppliers

Photographer – Jimmy Raper

Florist – Kelly Wright - Doctor Dahlia

Videographer – Ben Linsley - Family friend

First Dance – More than Words by Extreme

MC – Ben Kernahan – Sam’s housemate

Celebrant – Pastor Mark Hall – Revival Fellowship

Stationery – Lakemac Printing

Menu - Caterforce

Cake – Helen Brown – family friend

Hair  and Make-Up – Fuse Gallery Hair Skin & Body

Wedding Bands – Baunat – Belgium

Styling  –  Affections Wedding and Event Hire

New KWH Brisbane Store Opening

Posted on 31 Mar, 2017
New KWH Brisbane Store Opening

Karen Willis Holmes, Brisbane has packed their dress bags and moved close by to an exciting new location in Paddington (no, we haven't moved far!). After the bustling spring cleaning sample sale recently, the KWH team has been racing around getting the store ready for its fresh new start.  We searched far and wide for the 'perfect' store, finally coming across a stunning mid-1800's Colonial cottage that was screaming out our name. This once-home has been converted into the new KWH store and it oozes those classic cottage vibes with a huge, shady sweeping balcony, a steeply pitched roof and deeply overhanging eaves. It is classic yet with fresh modern details- two important elements that are synonymous with the Karen Willis Holmes brand.

To help launch the new store that is now open, we teamed up with one of our favourite photographers from the Sunshine Coast, Bonnie Jenkins. Hopefully, you caught one of our latest real bride blogs on Robyn and Whitney (who wore our stunning 'Saskia' gown from the BESPOKE collection). As soon as we found out Bonnie was the lady behind the lens for this breathtaking wedding, we knew it would be a perfect fit to invite her to come and take some pictures of our new store before it opened.

Bonnie has an incredible eye for detail, having a Masters in Fine Arts and a Degree in Photography to back up her unique gift of capturing the unexpected, real moments that leave memories. She lets the environment, her subject and the simplicity of her camera do all the talking and yet again, she has beyond impressed us with the stunning photos she has taken.  We are just bursting at the seams with excitement for the store to open and can't wait to give you a little glimpse at the new look. If you are in the area, please pop in and say hi!

 

STORE DETAILS
Address - 32 Latrobe Terrace, Paddington, Brisbane 
Ph - +61 7 3368 2216
Email - Click here
Website - Click here
To make an appointment at our new boutique, click here

BONNIE JENKINS - PHOTOGRAPHER
Ph - +61417 742 542
Email - Click here
Website - Click here
Facebook - Click here
Instagram - Click here
Vimeo - Click here

FRANCESCA FLOWERS - FLORIST
Address - 46 Latrobe Tce, Paddington QLD 4064
Ph - 07 3368 1710
Email - Click here
Website - Click here
Facebook - Click here
Instagram - Click here
 

Bianca + Liam's stunning New Zealand wedding

Posted on 29 Mar, 2017
Bianca + Liam's stunning New Zealand wedding

Bianca and Liam look effortlessly happy in every photo.  The beaming couple were initially friends and developed feelings for each other months later.  After being together for four years, Liam popped the question on a weekend away in Queenstown.  Bianca, who loves sharing special, quiet moments with her man was blown away when he knelt down on one knee in the middle of the mountains, with only the nearby cows as their witness.  They married at Old Forest School in Pongkawa, New Zealand in a romantic garden ceremony amongst their friends and family.  Bianca wore the 'Tulip' gown, which is a strapless beaded fishtail gown that flows to the ground in a simple georgette.  Stunning blooms by Elise at Honey Bee Wild Flowers finished off the look perfectly- with all of the flowers being locally sourced within Opotiki.  Rambo Estrada shot the magic of the day, being a photographer her sister had worked with meant everyone was so comfortable and at ease the whole time, they could relax and watch the stunning day unfold. 

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met through mutual friends, we were friends for months before we started dating.

How long have you been together? We have been together for four and a half years.

Do you have a proposal story? It was our 3rd anniversary and I planned to surprise Liam with a trip to Queenstown, this failed when I accidentally let it slip only days before we were due to go. Turns out Liam had a surprise of his own, and during a picnic on the side of a gravel road in a rural spot between the snowy mountains called Paradise,  Liam got down on one knee and asked the question. It was perfect, I'm not a fan of attention so I loved that it was in such a private, picturesque setting, with nearby cows as the only witnesses.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 13.01.2017

Ceremony and the Reception

Location? Old Forest School- Pongakawa-New Zealand

What made you choose there? We wanted our day to be as much fun and magic for the guests as it was going to be for us. We wanted our day to be mostly unstructured and for people to just be able to enjoy their time there.  The only time guests sat was for the speeches, the rest of the time they mingled and danced, and helped themselves to the onsite bar and the gourmet burgers and ice creams when they felt like it. The venue itself had everything we wanted our day to be, beautiful remote scenery, a barn, activities and fun for the guests, and the ability to choose our own caterers and provide our own alcohol. It also made the wedding a weekend event, as ourselves and all of our guests had traveled from near and far for the day which meant we all spent several days over the weekend celebrating together.


How did you find it? The venue featured in a few of our chosen photographers blogs, my sister Sophie is one of his second shooters and had second shot with him there several times, I fell in love with it from their photos.

How was the weather on the day? I woke up to skies of black clouds and rain, the clouds broke 2 hours before the ceremony was due to start, and it was blue sky and sunshine for the rest of our day.

The Wedding Details

Theme (if any colours, features, etc.)? For the theme, I wanted to draw from earthy natural colours with aspects of gold. I wanted the colours to reflect the romantic mood of the day but to remain relaxed and not overdone.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from?  Instagram, Pinterest and Photographers wedding blogs

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? The signage was made the night before the wedding by myself and my sister Sophie. We also sourced 130 mismatched crystal wine glasses for the bar second hand. Agee jars from the tables came from a local store down the road from Liam's parents house. The wood rounds for the serving platters were made and oiled by Liams dad.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?

Sophie Lewis- Maid of Honour-Sister

Olivia Lewis- Sister

Caitlin Gavin- Liam’s Sister

Trinh Pham- We have been best friends since high school, she was with me when I chose the dress as she now lives in Melbourne

Shawnee Hoskins- We have been best friends since high school

Jessica Hodson- University friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

Alex Morland-Best Man- Liam’s best friend

Nick Gavin- Liam’s brother

Brendon Thompson- He is like a second brother to Liam and has been a part of their family business for 17 years

Aaron Ramsey- A good friend of Liam’s

Haig Mehrtens- Liam and Haig grew up together, their parents are best friends

Marc Cooper- Another close family friend and good friend of Liam’s

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Bianca looked stunning in the 'Tulip' gown from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? The girl who took our engagement photos got married in a Karen Willis Holmes design, after looking at the website I fell in love with the designs as they were completely different from the popular all lace designs other designers I looked at had. So I made Melbourne and the KWH store a planned stopover on my way to London to see my bridesmaid Jess (Her generous wedding present to me).

How many gowns did you try? I tried a total of 7 dresses before trying on and falling in love with the Tulip

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes- Armadale, Melbourne

What did you especially like about your gown? I loved the way it was fitted through the body with it’s lace and sequin detailing, yet flowy and romantic at the bottom. I hadn’t come across any dresses like it and loved that it was different. It was easy to move in and I wore it the whole night comfortably.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? I had a style of dress I wanted but it was too hard to source in New Zealand in the colours I wanted. Liam’s mum was heading to Hoi An in Vietnam for a holiday, knowing how good the tailors were here I purchased a dress in the style was after, and sourced swatches of colours I was hoping to have the dresses made in. They were all made by Yaly Tailors in Hoi An using 100% silk.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? The shirts were a thick textured linen, purchased from Farmers. The pants came from Hallensteins. The leather suspenders were purchased on an Etsy store, the bowties came from The Iconic, and the boys all chose their own shoes from various places. They all wore Ray Ban wayfarers on the day.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore my Nanny’s Austrian Crystal drop earrings, I’m extremely close to my nanny so wanted to have a part of her with me on the day, and the Stolen Girlfriends Club silver bracelet Liam gifted to me on the morning of the wedding. I also had my Great Grandmothers hand embroidered handkerchief in my bra for catching the day's tears. I wanted to keep my accessories minimal so that the dress would be the main focus.

Where did you get your shoes from? Windsor Smith

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was a Grace Loves Lace Gabriela Veil made out of silk chiffon, it matched my dress perfectly.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Pay attention to the guests experience of the day, it’s too easy to stress about tiny things that won’t be a make or break point of your day, Instead focus on things that will make people's experience unforgettable. Also it’s cliché, but the day really does fly by, so take time to take it all in and just bask in the magic of the love of the day.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Stick true to what you feel comfortable in, let your dress reflect your personal style.

 

Suppliers

Photographer – Rambo Estrada
My Sister and Maid of Honor Sophie has been lucky enough to second shoot with Rambo for the last two summers. I loved his relaxed and beautiful style of photography and wouldn’t have had anyone else. He was great to have around for the day and we felt totally relaxed in front of him, it made having photos taken easy. His second shooter for the day.

Coralee Stone
Coralee was also amazing, she spent the morning with us girls and put all of our nerves completely at ease.

Florist - Honey Bee Wild Flowers 
Elise from Honeybee Wild Flowers runs a local business in the small town of Opotiki where I grew up. All of the flowers she used for our day were sourced locally within Opotiki which added to their beauty. She did more than I could have pictured with the florals on the day, the aisle, the bouquets, the table settings, it was so amazing turning up on the day and seeing all the beautiful flowers.

Music – Shortly after getting engaged we went to Russell in the Bay of Islands for a day together, we were sitting at the Duke of Marlborough enjoying lunch and a wine listening to a girl sing. I immediately knew I wanted her to be our singer at our wedding, so later messaged her and asked her if she would play for us on the day which she excitedly took the offer up of. She sang our aisle song (Dave Dobbyn-Beside You) which is a song that has been a fundamental part of my childhood and had our family and friends in tears. We walked out to Chet Faker-talk is cheap, She then sang until Dinner time. Once she left we then played a spotify playlist of all our favourite songs

Singer -  Asch-Rose  

First Dance – Kings of Leon-Pick up Truck

MC – My best friend from University-Simon Walker, it was so special to have someone who knew us to guide us through the day. He and Sophie surprised us with the shoe game that you see in some of the photos.

Celebrant –Tim Shipton
We wanted our celebrant to reflect the relaxed vibe of our day, Liam says he was a key part in keeping him relaxed before my arrival and we loved his style of hosting the ceremony.

Stationery – Kiyomi Kitagawa 
She is a family friend of ours. She is a Doctor, who does graphic design as a hobby and for friends and family. I provided minimal guidance with what I wanted our invites to be and she provided the most beautiful wedding stationary printed on linen paper.

Menu – We chose to have a laid back eating style so that our guests could enjoy mingling and dancing rather than being sat at tables for the majority of their day. Tag Burger is a gourmet burger truck, they offered fries, 3 beef, one chicken, one vegetarian and gluten and dairy free burger options for guests. The guests could go up and order whatever they liked off the Tag Burger menu whenever they were hungry. Most guests got barely 1/3 of the way through their burgers due to their size, we had many positive comments on the relaxed dining style. Desert was then the Mr Whippy Ice Cream truck, driven from the road to the venue by Liam and his groomsmen. Again guests could order whatever they liked off the menu when they felt like dessert.

Hair – Simone Anderson @simone_anderson
Simone traveled with Briar and did our hair. She started at 6 am and totally blew any doubt I had about timing out of the water. She managed to do 6 bridesmaid hair ups, my hair, hair and makeup for my Mum, mother-in-law and Nanny all before 12 pm. Having spent time with Simone before the day in social settings made it comfortable and exciting to have her there as part of our morning.

Make-Up Briar Howard
For the last few years I haven't trusted anyone but Briar to do my makeup for any occasions I’ve had, so I booked her as soon as I’d booked the venue. She made the trip from Auckland to Papamoa with Simone to be able to do our hair and makeup for the day. Having Briar there for the morning was like having a close friend there, this made the whole morning more special as it meant that the only people that were a part of our morning were people who I was relaxed and comfortable around. Briar knowing how I like my makeup meant it was easy and I didn’t have to provide any guidance with what I wanted, I couldn’t have hoped for any more than how she made us all look. She truly made myself and the girls feel amazing.

Cake – Briar Howard runs Our Little Kitchen co
My talented friend Briar also baked our Cakes. She arrived at the house I’d rented for myself and the bridesmaids at 11 pm the night before the wedding, and put the cakes together at 5am the following morning before doing all of our makeup from 6 am. The main cake was bottom tier-Vanilla and Doris plum cake.  The top tier was Caramel mud cake with buttercream icing and gold foil, meringues and fresh flowers. The mini cake was a gluten free cake as Liam is coeliac, it was a Chocolate and Caramel mud cake with buttercream icing.

Wedding Bands – Michael Hill Jewelers

Petr Vackar - Vendor Day

Posted on 28 Mar, 2017
Petr Vackar - Vendor Day

On the 25th March, the KWH flagship store in Alexandria was lucky enough to have talented make-up artist Petr Vackar in store to talk to all of our brides. All appointments were booked out well in advance and it was such a successful, fun day.  Petr, from PV Hair & Makeup, is also the One Fine Day- Sydney hair & makeup Creative Director so our gowns have been shot and exhibited numerous times with his looks complimenting them beautifully.  He comes with a wealth of international experience, working behind the scenes leading runway shows across Milan, Paris, London & New York.  Now residing in Sydney, where he runs his business, his passion lies in the wedding industry. Being involved in a brides special day and making her feel the most beautiful version of her she can be, is what drives him.  His mission is simple, stating "we specialise in helping our clients see how beautiful they are. Every human being is beautiful. Sometimes we just forget or we become too busy to notice."

Your Name: Petr Vackar

Location: Sydney

Business name: PV Hair Makeup

Let's start at the beginning. How did your business come about? 
I have always been a freelancer, with 10 years of fashion/editorial experience in Europe. The last 11 years here in Sydney, I have been slowly moving towards the bridal world. The ability to make someone feel beautiful and contribute to their big day is what makes the wedding industry so appealing to me. 

What inspires you? Everyday life, people, art (all forms)

How do you start your day? Ideally with some exercise and big breakfast.

What is your favourite thing about your job? Being able to make people see how beautiful they are.

What is your advice to couples planning a wedding?  Do not forget that it is a day when everyone will come to celebrate YOUR love. You don’t have to please anyone. Make the day about yourselves!

Favourite city? Sydney, Barcelona & Vienna.

Best way to spend $50? A 30 min Chinese massage.

Anything else you would like to share with brides-to-be about your work. Call me old fashioned but to me, the bride is a symbol of purity, virginity and something new. Like spring, or rose bud about to blossom. With that in mind, we always make sure that you look the best you can on your wedding day and most importantly, that you have fun :-) 



VENDOR DETAILS

Petr Vackar - PV Hair & Make-up
Email - ​Click here
Website - Click here
Instagram - Click here
Facebook - Click Here
Ph - 0415 612 286​

 

Ashleigh + Ricky's pretty Hunter Valley wedding

Posted on 27 Mar, 2017
Ashleigh + Ricky's pretty  Hunter Valley wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? I actually saw Ricky at a nightclub one night and recognised him as we had mutual friends. I sent him a message on Myspace the next day and let him know that I saw him and we started chatting (we still have the screenshots of our conversations!). After a week of chatting, Ricky and I went for a drive together and the rest is history!

How long have you been together? 8 years

Do you have a proposal story? Ricky planned a weekend away in the Blue Mountains, staying at the Fairmont Resort. When we arrived we went and had a cocktail at the bar and then went back to the room to have wine & cheese on the balcony. We were sitting on the balcony and Ricky said that he had a present for me to take away (I was about to go overseas for work for 3 weeks) and he gave me a photobook he had made. The photobook had the story of our relationship over 8 years, with photos of us and our holidays and on the last page it said “Before we continue this adventure I have one question to ask...” and then he got down on one knee!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 23 September 2016

Ceremony Location? Wandin Valley Estate, Lovedale

What made you choose there? We love the Hunter Valley and love to stay there a few times a year, so it was the perfect place for us to get married. So once we were engaged we researching venues online, and then we went to the Hunter Valley for a day trip. We visited 3 venues, as soon as we saw the reception area at Wandin Valley Estate we knew that it was the perfect place to get married. We also liked how we could have the ceremony and reception in the same place, and the guests could have drinks and canapes while we had our photos taken. We also liked how the indoor/wet weather option was also really beautiful (so we didn’t have to worry about rain as much).

How did you find it? I saw some photos on Instagram 

How was the weather on the day? The morning started off very cloudy and windy, we ended up deciding to move the ceremony indoors because of the strong winds forecasted for the afternoon. We didn’t mind as the indoor option was also beautiful. However, by 3pm the sun was coming out and we had perfect weather for the rest of the day and night.

The Wedding Details

Theme? We had beautiful white and blush flowers with a few elements of gold in the reception. We also had candles everywhere – I love candles.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest & wedding magazines.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? No, we worked with Peonies Boutique Weddings who understood exactly what we wanted and did the most amazing job, taking the stress away from us.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? My sister Kellie and cousin Marni.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Ben & Paul, Ricky’s close friends.

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Our niece Evelyn and nephews Connor & Lucas.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Ashleigh looked stunning in our BESPOKE 'Annika' lace gown. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? My cousin who was married a few years ago and she told me to go to the Karen Willis Holmes store first as the girls are lovely and it would be a great first experience of trying on wedding gowns. I looked online and loved about 5 of the dresses so decided to visit.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I saw them in wedding magazines and on Pinterest.

How many gowns did you try? I tried 8 Karen Willis Holmes gowns on and about 12 in total.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington, Sydney. 

What did you especially like about your gown? I went into the store thinking I knew exactly what I wanted and really liked a few gowns, but I had another appointment to try on dresses I needed to be at. As I was about to leave Hannah Kate the Sydney store manager said to me “I really think you should try on the Annika gown” and I was a bit hesitant as I really didn’t want a strapless gown, but I tried it on and immediately knew it was the one. I especially loved the lace, the beautiful train and that it was so comfortable. I went to my other appointment but then came straight back to order the Annika gown.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Angela Wilson, the bridesmaids wore Amsale dresses.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Tailor made suits from Institchu

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My earrings were from Karen Willis Holmes and the bridesmaids wore stud earrings from Lovisa.

Where did you get your shoes from? Wittner

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a stunning headpiece and one tier veil from Karen Willis Holmes.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Take 10 minutes alone with your husband on the wedding night to just take in everything.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Try on all different styles, I thought I knew exactly what I wanted until I tried different styles on.

Suppliers

Photographer – Ben Adams Photography. We spent so much time researching photographers and when we came across Ben’s work we loved all of it. When we got our wedding photos we were blown away with how amazing they were, I am so glad that we chose Ben.

Florist – Peonies Boutique Weddings. Darlene and the team from Peonies were fantastic, the understood exactly what we wanted for the day and it looked stunning.

Videographer – The Design Patrol. We absolutely love our wedding videos, Tash & Matt were awesome and captured us and the day so perfectly. I am so glad we ended up booking a Videographer at the last minute!

Music – XYDJ. The team at XYDJ were great and we were so happy that we had Simon DJ the wedding for us.

First Dance – The One, Kodaline

MC – Our good friend Pat Maxwell

Celebrant – Victoria Langham, A Beautiful Day. Victoria was recommended to me by my colleague and she is so lovely, we had the most beautiful ceremony.

Stationery – Peonies Boutique Weddings. Peonies also did our wedding stationery, ensuring that it all matched the rest of the wedding perfectly.

Menu –

Entrée

Salad of sumac roasted lamb loin with smoked eggplant puree, tomato and parsley salad and pomegranate reduction

Braised pork belly w/ apple & ginger puree, mizuno salad & Asian reduction (GF available)

Main

Slow Roasted eye fillet with dauphinoise potato, asparagus and red wine sauce

Chicken Supreme with onion soubise, parisienne potato, roast cherry tomato black olive and thyme

Dessert

Vanilla and white chocolate torte with raspberry compote

Soft centred Belgium chocolate pudding with honeycomb and honey nougat ice cream

Cake – Caked. Karen made us a delicious 2 tier cake.

Bombonieres – Bella Candles - our friends Diana and Nick made our guests the most amazing vanilla caramel candles, everyone loved them! Contact - 02 4362 1330

Hair & Make-Up – Empire Artistries. Diane & Nikki were amazing, they did the most amazing makeup and hair and it was still perfect at the end of the night.

Wedding Bands – Diamond Emporium. My engagement ring & our wedding bands are from Diamond Emporium, they designed exactly what we wanted.

Wedding Car – Princess Classic Cars. We have a beautiful white princess car and Gary was great on the day.

Photobooth – Funbox photobooths. The photobooth was great, our guests had so much fun and we got a hilarious guest book at the end of the night!

Leah + Skyler's Tuscan inspired Californian wedding

Posted on 20 Mar, 2017
Leah + Skyler's Tuscan inspired Californian wedding

Leah tagged along to her friends boss' birthday one night.  Skyler's birthday wishes all came at once when he spotted the stunning Leah in the crowd.  As she was leaving the party, he insisted they meet again for a drink sometime soon.  That was the start of their love story that they both look back on so fondly.  Both share a passion for travel and took off for a year of exploring the world.  The whole time, however, Skyler had other plans.  Before they embarked on their journey, he asked Leah's father's approval for her hand in marriage, packed the engagement ring and kept everything a secret until 4 months later when they were on the beach in Bali, watching the sun set over the Indian Ocean.  

Leah and Skyler had the most stunning Tuscan-inspired wedding in San Juan Capistrano, California.  The breathtaking venue was so beautiful, little styling was needed in the lead up to the event. Elise Whall from Plum and Oak captured the magical moments of the day whilst Emily and Ange from Bloom Babes brought their vision to light with the outstanding display of blooms and foliage.

The elegant couple danced the night away to Neil Young, again as the sun set and they began the next chapter of their exciting journey through life together.  

Background

How did you meet your partner? A mutual friend invited me to her boss’ birthday drinks and I decided to go to see my friend. On the way out I wished the birthday boy a happy birthday, but he stopped me from leaving and said we had not had the chance to talk. I told him it was a work night and I needed to go home so he asked if we could grab drinks the following evening. I was sure he wouldn’t remember so I agreed and left. He did remember and reached out to me the next day, I was hesitant, but agreed and that marked our first date!

How long have you been together? 5 years.

Do you have a proposal story? Skyler and I both left our jobs to travel the world for most of 2015. Before we decided to take this big leap, he asked me if I would prefer taking the more traditional path and the next step in our relationship, or travel, both would be impossible financially. I said, we can get married when we’re 50, let’s travel! About 4 months into our trip he totally surprised me when he got down on one knee on the stunning beaches of Bali. I was in total shock that the love of my life, travel buddy and best friend was proposing with the gorgeous orange sun setting over the Indian Ocean. Little had I known, he had carried the ring with him the entire time and had asked my Father for my hand well before we had embarked on our adventure.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 10.21.16

Ceremony & Reception

Where? The Villa, San Juan Capistrano, California USA

What made you choose there? It reminded us of a gorgeous Tuscan Villa we had seen on our travels. It was outdoors, and naturally beautiful with old world details, vines crawling up the stone walls and fruit trees hovering above.

How did you find it? Through another venue.

How was the weather on the day? Perfect. Sunny, but not too hot.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We wanted a Fall wedding: in September and October in Southern California the weather is perfect. All of the Saturdays at this venue had been spoken for, so we were left with only a Friday option. We lucked out because it rained on Saturday

The Wedding Details

Theme? Organic and effortless, lots of greenery, whites and neutrals. A couple pops of colour with the bougainvillaea draping over the altar doorway and blue Mediterranean tile escort cards.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? The venue itself. I wanted everything to look natural and compliment this stunning venue.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? I took old broken terracotta tiles and painted them with blue and white designs to use as the escort cards.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – 

Maid-Of-Honour: Erin Wall/best friend,

Bridesmaids: Stephanie Chambers and Dori Araiza

I also had my two brothers stand next to me: Blair Tierney and Arian Faurtosh.

Groomsmen – Skyler's three brothers: Dan Maiman (Best Man), Erik Drury and Marc Maiman.

Skyler also had his 6 closest best friends recognized as the Blue Tue Guys: Brandon Brooks, Brad Shipley, Dan Bradbury, Dagan Kofler, Jake Loskutoff and Ryan Morris.

Flower girls/Page boys? There were actually no kids at our wedding, it was an adult-only affair!



Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Leah looked stunning in our 'Blake/Prea' combination gown from the D.Y.G collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I purchased my Karen Willis Holmes dress from Elle Bridal Boutique in downtown San Diego.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I hadn’t!

How many gowns did you try? At least 70.

What did you especially like about your gown? It is classy and timeless. I instantly fell in love with the material, the structure and the beauty of the dress. I know I will look back on my dress years from now and still be in love with it. I felt so beautiful in my Karen Willis Holmes dress.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? My bridesmaids wore Reformation blush floral dresses.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Skyler had his suit custom made in Vietnam while we were on our travels. The groomsmen’s suits are from Men’s Warehouse and they were a sharkskin blue suit with a black tie.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My Aunt and Uncle gifted me gorgeous emerald studs. And I wore my wedding bands, I wanted to keep the focus on my beautiful dress and veil.

Where did you get your shoes from? Schutz. Loved them!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? A cathedral length Spanish Mantilla lace veil from Veiled Beauty.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Be true to yourself and your relationship. Don’t be afraid to stick with your vision, it will turn out beautifully.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Go with how you feel. Does it feel good to put it on? Do you feel beautiful? You will fall more in love with it every time you try it on. Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day.

Something Old? My great great grandmother’s white silk hanky for tears of joy.

Something New? My emerald earrings.

Something Borrowed? My silver cake knife and server, they were over 50 years old and used at my grandmother and grandfather’s wedding.

Something Blue? My great grandmother’s blue sapphire brooch, pinned on the inside of my dress.

Suppliers

Photographer – Elyse Whall of Plum and Oak. She is THE BEST. The moments she captured continues to blow me away.

Florist – Bloom Babes. Working with Emily and Angie from Bloom Babes was one of the best decisions I made. They totally understood my vision and made my perfect wedding a stunning reality. Love them!!

Videographer – Joey from byDesignFilms.

Music – DJ Divel. Skyler curated playlists for every part of the ceremony and reception.

First Dance – Harvest Moon by Neil Young.

MC – DJ Divel.

Celebrant – My Aunt Kim married us. It was so special and she was incredible.

Stationery – Camille from Robinson Design + Paperie.

Menu – Ramos House.

Cake – My Aunt Samira baked and designed our cake. Champagne cake with almond butter cream and fresh raspberries. It was stunning and delicious.

Bombonieres – We left welcome bags in the guests’ hotel rooms with sparkling water, custom mix CDs, travel candles and matchbooks.

Hair – Katie L’Heureux. She did a beautiful job! Throughout the night, as I danced, my hair loosened up beautifully.

Make-Up Elizabeth Root. Loved my makeup!

Wedding Bands – Skyler melted down the gold from his late Fathers wedding band and used it to make his.

Extra features – My Aunt Kathy created a gorgeous Sofreh Aghd, which is a Persian Wedding Tradition and each item on the table symbolizes something special for the couple’s marriage.

Behind The Scenes - Oh Flora Vendor Day

Posted on 20 Mar, 2017
Behind The Scenes - Oh Flora Vendor Day

Lovers of stunning blooms and all things pretty- you are in for a treat!  On the 25th of February, we were lucky enough to have Tanya from Oh Flora Studio in-store to show off some of her floral arrangements specially created for our Vendor Day which was held in our brand new Flagship store in Alexandria, Sydney.  Tanya is the queen at putting together organic, uncomplicated arrangements that burst at the seams with colour, style and texture.  

In her studio a few days prior, she constructed the most beautiful arbor adorned with carnations, climbing roses, daisies, maple leaves and filled out with abundant green foliage.  This visual treat stole all the limelight at the Vendor Day and is something that can translate perfectly for your wedding day as it creates a wonderful space under which to say your vows and also creates a perfect frame for your photographs. 

A huge thank you to Sara Eshu for the stunning photography and of course to Tanya for taking the time to spend the day at our Alexandria store chatting to all of our beautiful brides about her process and how her work can be incorporated into anyone's wedding day.  If you would like to contact Oh Flora Studio, please see more information at the bottom of this post. 

CREDITS

OH FLORA STUDIO
Tanya Shaw
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Ph - 0402 520 429

PHOTOGRAPHY
Sara Eshu
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Email - Click here
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Lisa + Brett's country wedding

Posted on 15 Mar, 2017
Lisa + Brett's country wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? Through an accidental add on facebook 


How long have you been together? 4.5 years
 

Do you have a proposal story? Our first date was supposed to be at a gorgeous little café on Melbourne Street in North Adelaide, but it was closed. On the day (27th December, 15) of the proposal Brett has mentioned going for a picnic that evening, and that he would arrange the picnic items, as we were driving I started to think “we really aren’t driving in the direction of any usual picnic locations” sure enough we drove onto Melbourne Street and he pulled over, I started to think “perhaps we are going for a nice dinner, great I’m dressed like this..... ”I asked if I should take my bag as I noticed he wasn’t taking any of the picnic items, he said ahhhh yeah... and that’s when I had a feeling something was happening, he took my hand cool as a cucumber and we crossed the street, stopped out the front of the café we were supposed to have our first date and he started speaking the most beautiful words, to which he then got down on one knee and ask the question. We did end up heading somewhere else for a gorgeous picnic with a perfect sunset and a lovely bottle of Pol Roger Reserve.  

 

The Wedding
What was your wedding date? 22nd October, 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Penny’s Hill Winery

What made you choose there? Brett works there as the CFO 

How did you find it? It was beyond what I could have ever imagined, the staff were fantastic. They were so helpful, it was not in any way a stressful process and they were so accommodating for some dietary requirement for some guests. As well as setting up the reception room so perfectly, the ceremony area so perfectly, I was blown away.

How was the weather on the day? It was a rather cool day with a top of 15, light showers in the morning but the sun broke through the clouds as soon as I started walking down the isle.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? Brett wanted the wedding to be sometime in October as the grounds usually look rather green at Penny’s Hill at that time of year and I loved the way it looked.

The Wedding Details

Theme? very simple, classic theme, white flowers, black suits, lots of greenery

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Brett and I are both very simple people, we like the simple classic look.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y?  Yes the place cards, the table numbers, the menus, the bombardiers (homemade truffles), table decorations.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Both my sisters, Sherrie & Riona Stow.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Nic Borrelli & Timothy Rochford, who are both Brett’s long term friends.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Lisa looked stunning in our BESPOKE 'Holly' gown. See more here

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? After much disappointment elsewhere, I happen made an appointment at  The Vintage Bride. Renee squeezed me in at Karen Willis Holmes had a trunk show, and I will forever be grateful that she did.

How many gowns did you try?  I tried on around 30 gowns and did not like any of them. Not being overly girly I was really struggling. I had resigned to the fact that I would have to plan an interstate trip to see if there was anything different out there

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? The Vintage Bride 
What did you especially like about your gown? The style of the dress fit my body absolutely perfectly. I felt like a bride but like me the minute I put it on.

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Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Alexandra Grecco  

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Black, Ted Baker suits from David Jones.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore a pair of pearl earrings, with the smaller pearl at the front and a larger pearl behind the year, a pearl ring which was a gift from Brett’s late grandmother, and a pearl bracelet from Brett’s mother which was given to her by Brett’s father when Brett was born. The bridesmaids just wore pearl earrings, as I had a pearl necklace attached to the back of their dresses as they were low cut.

Where did you get your shoes from? I already had my shoes, a tan coloured pair of strappy shoes that are extremely comfortable.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? My veil and headpiece were purchased from Renee at The Vintage Bride, I believe she makes them herself

Other 

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Take it slow, enjoy the planning process and stick with what you love most. Don’t get caught up it in all.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t stop looking until you feel that feeling that everyone says you feel when you have found the one, it does happen! Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. Take 10 minutes as a small break between ceremony and reception with your husband, just to say hi and embrace the fact that you are now married.

Something Old? Shoes

Something New? Dress

Something Borrowed? Bracelet from my now mother in law

Something Blue? Garter  

Suppliers  

Photographer – Mel Boulden. We had been recommended a photographer by a close friend, he was not available upon our first enquiry but sent me a list of 4 people he recommended. After a quick enquiry with all 4 we couldn’t have been happier with Mel right from the start. Mel was so incredibly easy to work with and on the day we honestly felt like she wasn’t even there.

Florist – Melanie Millsteed (Brett’s cousin). She has an incredible knack with flowers and occasionally does flower arrangements as a side job, one day I was discussing flowers with her and she offered to do the flowers for us. She did an amazing job! 

Music – Brett and I were lucky enough to win a DJ and photobooth package through the ABI program.

MC – Brett’s groomsmen Timothy Rochford, he was very funny and is great with public speaking

Celebrant – Sandra Haynes. We had tried to secure a celebrant closer to Penny’s Hill to make it easier for them in terms of travel, after seeing 2 celebrants we knew Sandra was the one, she spoke softly but well, she focused heavily on what we wanted throughout the ceremony and out of it and everything ran extremely smooth. She always looked absolutely spectacular on the day  

Stationery – Minted, a very easy and affordable online service. Extremely easy to use and the delivery is incredibly fast

Cake – Angle Wedding Cakes. Fiona is a very lovely lady who, despite the number of questions is very prompt and helpful. We have now had 3 cakes made through her and have never been disappointed. After describing to her what I had in mind for the cake, I was honestly blown away with the outcome, it looks stunning.

Bombonieres –  I made these myself, 3 truffles per quest all different flavours(also catered for the 5 vegan guests we had) it was a bit of a task but we felt much more comfortable giving something that meant something. It also allowed me to attached a tag that said “made with love, enjoy in the memory of love”

Hair – My very good friend Sarah Schultz. I had known Sarah since she was 14, was a model for her several times as she went through her hairdressing course. My hair looked exactly as I imagined, I was very happy  

Make-Up – Jess Buechter, this was another avenue where I tried to find someone closer to Penny’s Hill for travel reasons. I had 2 trials with Jess for different colours and both times the makeup was exceptional. I was very happy  

Wedding Bands – Martin Roger. The same jeweller that Brett went to for my engagement ring. They create some absolutely stunning pieces. As soon as I had picked a design they ordered the diamonds, when they came in we took a look and then they made the ring. I was blown away when I saw it together. Stunning and the service was incredible.


Car – Jaguars with Grace. Stunning car, very funny and professional driver it was a very enjoyable ride to the venue

Accommodation – Willunga Cottage + Evelyn Homestead. The accommodation was so lovely, my bridesmaids and myself stayed there the night before the wedding, and then myself and Brett the night of the wedding. Breakfast items where there for both days. The cottage was beautiful and made for really lovely pictures. The owner was kind enough and very flexible to work in what worked best for us for check in and out. I would stay there again for sure. 

Belle and Chris' Romantic Byron Bay Wedding

Posted on 10 Mar, 2017
Belle and Chris' Romantic Byron Bay Wedding

AS FEATURED BY:

 

When Belle rocked up for her first day of work and locked eyes with Chris, she knew he was something special. It took her 3 months to build the courage to say hello but just 4 years later they were saying “I do” in the Byron Bay hinterland, with Lucas & Co on hand to capture it all.

Belle and Chris had decided on their wedding venue long before they were even engaged. Bell recalls, “I found Horizon online looking at beautiful houses with my sisters for weddings none of us were planning haha! I saw Horizon and knew I’d marry Chris there. I showed Chris even though we weren’t engaged and he loved it as well.”

On their second anniversary, Chris treated Belle to a surprise weekend away near Byron Bay and got down on one knee. He says, “The moment was incredible, tears, laughing and she said yes. I can still picture it, that was more than a life-changing moment.”

The couple enlisted the services of Byron Bay Weddings to help realise the vision they had for a relaxed but romantic celebration. Belle says, “Emily directed us to vendors who were our style and within our budget which made the whole process so enjoyable and fun. There was no stress!

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met at work on my first day and MAC, Chris was working in fragrance at the time and we locked eyes as I walked in. It was probably one of the most memorable moments of my life I can still see Chris standing there as I walked in. It took me a good three months to build up the courage to speak to Chris, I was way too nervous. 

Since then we have been inseparable, since we began dating our first goal was to build our home together - This is such a good snap of our relationship, we dream big! 
 

How long have you been together? 4 Years

Do you have a proposal story? Chris proposed to me at Koonyum Range Retreat in Mullumbimby NSW on our 2 year anniversary. I had no idea what was about to happen he kept such a good secret, I usually find our every surprise. He spoilt me with beautiful red roses and a note saying we were going away for the weekend. It was amazing! the emotion I felt and how excited I was I can still feel, what a moment! He still gives me butterflies like that now.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 3rd September 2016.

Ceremony & Reception

Location?  Horizon, Byron Bay

What made you choose there? I found Horizon online looking at beautiful houses with my sisters for weddings none of us were planning haha! As soon as I saw it, I knew I’d marry Chris there. I showed Chris even though we weren’t engaged and he loved it as well. When we went to visit the venue with BBW it was just magical. The breathtaking views and the ceremony deck was more than we had dreamed of - there were no more venues to look at from there.
We wanted the venue and marquee very simple with lots of colourful blooms on the tables and gold accents as finishing touches to the already beautiful venue. Horizon speaks for itself there is no need to over do anything.

How did you find it? Looking online 

The Wedding Details

Theme? The theme was romance in the hills. Our vibe is very relaxed so this was fitting for our wedding too. We wanted the venue and marquee very simple with lots of colourful blooms on the tables and gold accents as finishing touches to the already beautiful venue. Horizon speaks for itself there is no need to over do anything. 

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Byron Bay Weddings helped me to realise everything. Emily directed us to vendors who were our style and within our budget which made the whole process so enjoyable and fun. There was no stress!  A lot of my inspiration came from Hello May, when we got engaged my sisters bought this for me and it was so special my new surname would be May. I looked a lot on Instagram, The Wedding Shed, Little Grey Station and The Events Lounge. I just loved looking at everything.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?
My sisters and I are very creative and it was difficult to not want to take over and do the whole wedding - this just wasn’t possible. My sisters wanted to do little things to help us and that was an amazing thing little details just made the day more us and extra special. 

My sister Vanessa is an incredible graphic designer and she has done lots of wedding invitation designs and blackboard signs so of course she had to help me with mine too. Vanessa designed our save the dates, invitations, black board signs, menus and name tags. They were so beautiful. 

My other sister Fiona hand embroidered our tees to get ready in. All the bridesmaids and my mum had grey and mine white with bright pink writing, simple and sweet. Fiona is also a budding florist so she had fun assembling flower arrangements for the top of our blackboard welcome sign and table chart. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Belinda wore the 'Mabel' two piece gown from the WILD HEARTS collection by Karen Willis Holmes
 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? KWH was the second dress store I went to and the Mabel two piece was the second dress I tried on, I got so emotional and I couldn’t wait for Chris to see me in it. 

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes, Brisbane

What did you especially like about your gown?  I struggled to decide what type of look I wanted to go for as a Bride, if I wanted boho or more classic so I left it up to trying on everything to help me decide. Originally I wanted the long fitted lace gown with a low back, all of my Inspo images were this design. Once I started trying on dresses, I felt like I needed to ensure I chose something that was me- simple, classic but different from the trends.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Kookai

Who did your partner wear? Wolf Kanat & shoes from Blaq

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? Earrings were my mums and my grandmas both worn by them on their own weddings days. 

Where did you get your shoes from? Kendall and Kylie

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Veil was from Karen Willis Holmes

Other

What advice would you give brides organising their wedding?  Enjoy every single moment in the planning and the day and don’t let the small stuff get in the way. Remember what you’re doing and why.  Make sure the whole day embodies this in every moment. It goes so fast and once you are in amongst the emotions and energy important moments can slip past, make sure you have time just you two. Chris and I made sure we slowed down and absorbed everything all day, Kirsty our celebrant had a moment at the end of our ceremony where we stopped, looked around and took in the whole moment and each other - this was amazing, I’ll never forget it. We also set 30 minutes aside just us which helped make the day even more memorable.

We were so happy with everything we did. Some standouts were choosing our first venue that we fell in love with, doing some DIY to make our day a little more original and also relax! It was a big thing for us in the lead up with lots of family around so we made sure when the day came we relaxed and put our love first.

The only thing we wish we did was videography, however, Jason and Sarah did an incredible job in capturing moments we missed.  The photos told a beautiful story of our day.  

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? Our favourite moment was seeing each other for the first time. I was so excited all day, not one bit of nerves I just couldn’t wait to see him. Once I turned around the corner with my dad and started walking I could only see him, all our guests went blurry and it was a magical moment. Chris was standing there and I could tell he was holding back tears. We had waited for that moment for so long it was just insane when it happened. 

Second favourite moment to this had to be when we were announced husband and wife!! 

Suppliers
 

Photographer - Jason and Sarah,  Lucas & Co.

Florist - The French Petal, Byron Bay

Styling/ Event planner- Byron Bay Weddings 

Venue - Horizon 

Music - Tom Francis

Celebrant - Kirsty Laing 

Stationery -  Vanessa Macphail 

Menu - Fig Tree Restaurant, Byron Bay 

Cake - White chocolate mud cake with Belgian white chocolate ganache, made by Debbie 

Bombonieres - 

Hair - Tash, The Front Yard 

Makeup - Rhiannon Jay and Belinda May (bride) 

Wedding Bands - Michael Hill

SS'17 Haute Couture Shows Re-cap

Posted on 09 Mar, 2017
SS'17 Haute Couture Shows Re-cap

The Spring Summer 2017 Haute Couture shows have just concluded- a showcase of the most intricate, ambitious and extravagant creations from the world's best fashion houses.  This is where craftsmanship and attention to detail is at its finest and where the fantasy of couture comes alive.  

Chanel emphasised femininity, creating powerful silhouettes through strong shoulders, defined waists and full skirts in beaded embroidery and delicate laces.  Ellie Saab blew us away with his strategically designed beaded numbers, opting for long sleeves and sheer tulle elegantly grazing the floor. 

Alberta Ferretti kept the mood dark and sombre, with the use of beading, feathers and strong punches of black whilst Givenchy also lead a collection that brought attention to structure, heavy beading, and feathers. 

We have pulled together our highlights that resonated with us from the week, with the key messages lying in simplicity, feminity and subtle extravagance. 

Alberta Ferretti SS'17 Haute Couture


Alexis Mabille SS'17 Haute Couture


Armani Prive SS'17 Haute Couture


Chanel SS'17 Haute Couture


Ellie Saab SS'17 Haute Couture


Givenchy SS'17 Haute Couture


Ralph Russo SS'17 Haute Couture


Valentino SS'17 Haute Couture

Whitney & Robyn's picturesque Sunshine Coast wedding

Posted on 08 Mar, 2017
Whitney & Robyn's picturesque Sunshine Coast wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met at the local RSL we both worked at on the Sunshine Coast and Robyn had just come back from three months in Europe and a few months prior I had moved back to the coast from Brisbane. We spent four years on the coast working and having fun then decided to make a move to Mount Isa to benefit our futures are still here five years later.

How long have you been together? Nine years this year.

Do you have a proposal story? We went to Byron Bay for a long weekend for a music festival ‘Splendour In The Grass’ as we both have a love for many genres of music, once we checked in to our beach house we decided to have afternoon tea at the lighthouse but it was a cold and rainy day. We watched the storm roll over the hills and onto the beach taking in the beautiful view. We had packed cheese and crackers and an urn full of hot tea which is my favorite as I drink so much of it, Robyn poured a cup of tea for me and was intently looking at me until I realized the black mug had turned into a picture of her on one knee holding a sign saying ‘Will you marry me’ she then pulled a box out of her pocket and when she opened it the ring was so sparkly and to die for then after a few tears I said YES! It was a surreal day and one of the happiest.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 15th October 2016

Location?  Yandina Station – Luxury Country Estate, Sunshine Coast. Neill and Sally were a pleasure to deal with! 

What made you choose there? It was the first place we looked at and couldn’t go past it.

How did you find it? Robyn’s family live nearby and we wanted it to be near where we both grew up on the coast and so our friends and family didn’t have to travel far.

How was the weather on the day? From the cottages, you could see there was a sprinkle of rain coming over in the morning which was worrying but then it cleared up and was a gorgeous day. The ceremony took place under the unbelievably beautiful fig tree followed by canapés on the lawn then onto the reception in the dairy barn for a sit-down banquet dinner which was the most delicious food I have ever eaten. Followed by copious amounts of laughter, dancing and celebrating all night long.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date?  Just the available date for the venue and it was a great month for the flowers we wanted.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Yandina Station is a luxury country estate and a working cattle property, it was a unique combination of vintage beauty, history, incredible views and open spaces.  Rustic, relaxed and fun, Colours – dusty rose, gold, neutrals, dusty blue/greens. 

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Magazines like Hello May and The Brides Tree, Instagram and Pinterest was a big help for inspiration as we are currently living and working in a rural mining town but we wanted to keep it simple as there was so much history and beauty in the venue already. We hired the fairy lights that filled the room and the rose gold sequin table runners for the bridal table from Splash Events in Noosa.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y?  Anything that could be made we did it! We bought and cut the hessian table runners. The wedding invitations were an Etsy template then we printed and cut them all out. Robyn’s brother made the table numbers. Weup-cycled and painted the rose gold glass jars on the tables. We made and hand painted ceremony and lawn game signs for around the venue We made some of the lawn games We borrowed the Cordwell’s wooden crates that are from Robyn’s Grandparents who owned a pineapple farm and some of the suitcases as well.  The bonbonniere’s were vintage teacups collected from various garage sales with homegrown succulents and Robyn’s mum helped us make homemade marmalade & ginger jam in mini jars with hessian covers

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Mine were Bec, Nikkita and Charms – all lifelong friends and Robyn’s were Dee, Stacey and Marissa – all high school friends Page boys – who/relationship? Lync and Mace – Robyn’s Nephews  

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Whitney looked stunning in our ''Saskia' gown from the BESPOKE collection

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? It was the first place on the list to make a booking! I had pretty much already decided that I wanted a Karen Willis Holmes dress but had to try on other designers just to be sure. I love that Karen Willis Holmes is an Australia designer too. The shop front is so inviting and all the girls were a pleasure to deal with and helped make my decision easier (Lisa in the Brisbane Store is just so lovely!).

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I browsed all of the collections online after one of my close friends got married the year before and she chose a Karen Willis Holmes dress that was stunning!

How many gowns did you try? Too many I loved them all haha probably about 5 or 6 but I finally decided on the Bespoke – Saskia gown.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes in Paddington, Brisbane

What did you especially like about your gown? It was so damn gorgeous, the detail in the bodice and the hint of shimmering blush that you could only see through the lace when the light caught it, and the silk was so beautiful. I also chose to customise it and change the shape and colours of the layers in the skirt, I think it was timeless and I will still love it in many years to come. I didn’t want to take it off at the end of the night.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? We gave our bridesmaids a colour theme each and said, go find a dress that suits you and something that you love and will wear again. My bridesmaids were in dusty rose and they all looked gorgeous.

Who did your partner wear? Pippin by WToo from BellaDonna Bridal in Brisbane.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I gave my girls a pair of earrings and a clutch to wear for the day and I had Samantha Wills stud earrings and bracelet.

Where did you get your shoes from? I bought a pair of Rose Gold Jimmy Choo stilettos which didn’t last long and I changed into something more comfortable for the photos and dancing as we were climbing up what looking like a mountain of logs and trapesing through the pineapple fields but I will wear those Jimmy Choos every chance I get.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece?  No, I didn’t really want one but I had the florist make me up a little feature flower from the bouquets to put in my hair.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Lock in all the big things first like your date & venue, photographer & videographer, the celebrant and a band or entertainment as they book out quite quickly and it can be stressful if things are left to the last minute.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Take your time don’t rush and go looking a few times and take different family members or friends with you as they know you best and can help you decide and make the experience fun and exciting as it is a celebration. Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day.

Something Old? My Portuguese grandmother’s pearl ring which was tied onto my bouquet  

Something New? My dress and shoes 

Something Borrowed? Robyn’s grandmothers rose gold ring.

Something Blue? All of Karen Willis Holmes gowns have a blue bow sewn into the dress but Robyn’s mother gave me a bracelet with blue birds that I also tied onto my bouquet.

Suppliers

Photographer – Bonnie Jenkins Photography 

Florist – Julia from Ginger lily and Rose

Videographer – Beccy from BXCSMXTH

Music – Unique DJ’s and Photobooth Hire

First Dance – City & Colour - Northern Wind

MC – One of our good friends Christie helped us out.

Celebrant – Johanna Murray from Vogue Vows 

Stationery – Zazzle for ‘Save the Dates”, Etsy for the ‘Invites’ and Zazzle for the ‘Thank You postcards’

Menu –

Savoury Canapes   - Caramelised Pork Belly, Sweet and Sour Pineapple (GF/DF), Wagyu Rump Cap, Tonnato Sauce, Crisp Capers (GF/DF), Prawn and Glass Noodle Spring Rolls with Baby Cos, Herbs and Chilli Caramel Roasted Duck, and Caramelised Onion and Rosemary Puff Pastry Pies

Mains   - Chicken Galantine, Pork Stuffing, Pancetta, Parsnip Puree, Lemon Thyme (GF) , Dry Aged Sirloin, Horseradish Relish and Watercress (GF/DF) , Slow Roasted Shoulder of Spiced Lamb, Sofrito and Toum (GF/DF)  

Sides  - Seasonal Greens, Crisp Garlic, Hazelnuts and Brown Butter (V/GF), Honey and Thyme Roasted Carrots, Goats Curd (V/GF), Hand Cut Desiree Potato Chips with Rosemary Salt (V/GF/DF)  

Cake - Red Velvet Cake with rustic cream cheese icing, a lovely red colour when cut with layers of cream cheese. This was the wedding cake. Hummingbird Cake with textured buttercream Icing and Coconut.  

Petite Desserts - Mini Raspberry and White Chocolate Cheesecakes, Mini Lemon Meringue Pies

Bombonieres –The bonbonniere’s were vintage teacups collected from various garage sales with home gown succulents and Robyn’s mum helped us make homemade marmalade & ginger jam in mini jars with hessian covers

Hair – Karrisa McLaren and Michelle Gataric from Kmmakeup Studios

Make-Up - Bec James Makeup (Also my maid of honor)

Wedding Bands – Stuart McLean from Underwood’s Fine Jewellers Kawana

Extra features – Our day wouldn’t have been possible without all the wonderful suppliers and their exceptional hard work and talents to make it as special as possible which is what every bride hopes for!

Amanda + Patrick Catholic New York wedding

Posted on 07 Mar, 2017
Amanda + Patrick Catholic New York wedding

Amanda & Patrick wed in the extravagant location of St. Louis Roman Catholic Church in New York.  Boasting the longest aisle in the city, Amanda made quite the impact on her entrance. Even though their day was full of rain, it was filled with even more love and laughter. The weather cleared up after the ceremony, revealing clear blue skies- perfectly finishing off their Hollywood style wedding which featured classic colours of greens, golds and navies. This particular date held special sentiment as it was the same day Amanda's grandparents got married. The couple and their guests danced the night away in The Terrace Room which is part of the historic Stalier building, featuring stunning black and white tiled floors which added incredible drama to this romantic affair. 

Background

How did you meet your partner? Our best friends were dating, and they decided that Pat had to be part of our friend group. I wasn’t interested in being set-up with anyone, but by the second time we met I was already done for. I left two months later to study abroad in London, which could have been the end. Instead, Pat booked a flight to visit me and things just kept getting better.

How long have you been together? 9 years

Do you have a proposal story? Every year, we go to Fort Lauderdale, Florida for a week. Pat decided we were going to rent a car and drive to Key West for a few days. I was so happy to relax, that I kept pushing off our plans to go see the Ernest Hemingway house for more pool time reading. When I finally was ready to move, I dragged us to lunch, forced Key Lime Pie on him (famous in Key West!) and wanted to walk around and explore more. He had called ahead to make sure the lighthouse there was empty, so he finally said we needed to get there to see it before it closed for the afternoon. It took me awhile to get to the top, and as soon as I walked out onto the terrace, he got down on one knee. I was so excited I knocked the ring out of his hand! We watched the sunset at Mallory Square and spent the night celebrating. It was so special being away and spending the whole time relishing the moment and then celebrating with friends and family the next week when we got home.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? September 17th, 2016

Ceremony Location? St. Louis Roman Catholic Church

What made you choose there? St. Louis is an absolutely breathtaking church. There is a Kimball Organ on the balcony and the in-house organist is incredible. It also has the longest aisle in the city, and after dating eight years, I wanted to make sure I got to have a full-on bride moment.

How did you find it? I worked across the street for years.

Reception Location? The Statler Terrace Room

What made you choose there? I had a very specific vision of what I wanted our venue to look like. The Terrace Room is classic, with black & white tiled floors and beautiful mirrors.

How did you find it? The Statler is a well-known historic building in Buffalo. We had been to a few weddings and other events in the Golden Ballroom there.

How was the weather on the day? From the second I woke up - rain, rain, rain. I think it was the only rain that we had since May. We did luck out and have clear skies before and after the ceremony, which allowed us to get photos outside of the church.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? My grandparents were married on the same date.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Once I had chosen my dress, I used that style to settle on a theme. I wanted everything to look streamlined with a little bit of an old Hollywood feel. My biggest focus was choosing a look that would not be outdated in ten years. Greens, golds and navy were the colours I selected. We put a runner of greens on the captains table, with some gold décor mixed in.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? My maid of honor got me a subscription to Brides magazine immediately after we got engaged. I flipped through for colour and floral ideas and tore out pages of table settings.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? I might be the only bride to ever say this, but I tried to stay away from Pinterest. There are so many ideas out there that it can get overwhelming. Our one project was the place card display. The centrepieces were tall gold vases with a big tuft of babies breath and I wanted to tie that into the place card table. We (I should say my mom and aunts) layered flora l foam in several trays and placed babies breath on top, setting the place cards on the bed of flowers. I also love Pablo Neruda’s poetry. There was a sonnet that I wanted to use as a reading during our ceremony but was unable to, as we had a Catholic mass. Instead, I used a computer application to type out different lines from his work and framed them for the place card table, dessert table, and a few other places.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?  Jessica Moses (Maid of Honor) – Sister, Lauren Pritchard (Maid of Honor) – High school friend, Erin Meyers – Sister-in-law, Laura Bender – High school friend, Rachel McCrone – High school friend, business partner, Allison Jackson – High school friend, Genevieve Carbone – Friend,  Caitlin McCarthy – Friend, wife of best man. 

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Scott Witter (Best man) – Childhood friend, Timothy McCarthy (Best man) – Childhood friend, Phil Ciallela – College friend, Adam Hernandez – High school friend, Johnathan Graves – College friend, Steven Wawro – College friend,  Gaetano Falcone – High school friend. 

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Gianna Graves, groomsman's daughter. 

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Amanda looked stunning in our 'Blake/Prea' combination gown from our D.Y.G collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? In the end, the 'Prea/Blake'  dress was what I built my whole wedding on. I tried on only four dresses and was torn between 'Blake/Prea' and another dress of a completely different style. Where 'Blake/Prea' is clean, simple and structured, the other gown was whimsical and flowing (and PINK). My mother-in-law’s wise words were, this pink dress is who you used to be when we met you eight years ago, but the 'Blake/Prea' dress is exactly who you are now.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I had not until I tried it on!

How many gowns did you try? 4

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Lovely Bride Rochester. Lovely Bride is doing it right! The store is beautiful and elegant, and every dress is beautiful and unique.

What did you especially like about your gown? I loved the corset style top and the shape of the skirt. The train was so beautiful and it took on a whole different scalloped shape that I loved once it was bustled. I also loved the material. I always pictured myself in a dress with a huge skirt, but this dress changed that as soon as I put it on.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Wtoo by Waters from MA Carr.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Bar III from Macy’s

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? The Odette belt by Untamed Petals, a pair of crystal Kate Spade drop earrings, and a silver Tiffany &Co. bracelet Pat gave me as a gift years ago (old and blue!). The bridal party kept their accessories very simple, because the dress had an overlay that allowed for different styles.

Where did you get your shoes from? Badgley Miscka from Nordstrom Rack

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a cathedral veil from Lovely Bride

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? It is SO easy to get completely lost in the details. If you find something you love, whether it’s as small as the table numbers, or as huge as the dress, stop looking! You will always second guess yourself if you keep looking. You know what your style is, stay true to it so that when you look back on your wedding, you know it was a reflection of you (and your husband!).

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Same thing goes. If you feel like your most beautiful self in a dress, and it makes you cry, then make your decision and don’t look back. Spend a lot of time looking at styles in magazines before you go shopping, and let the stylist bring you a dress or two you might not have picked for yourself.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. Dads are just the best. My dad and I spent weeks wondering how we were going to get down the aisle without blubbering. Right before the doors opened, he pulled a puppet out from behind his back. It was the perfect little distraction for us, and we kept it together! My father-in-law wrote a song and played it during our ceremony. This was a complete surprise to us, and was beautiful!

Something Old? My grandmother’s sapphire ring. 

Something New? Kate Spade earrings.

Something Borrowed? My other grandmother’s rosary, wrapped around my bouquet.

Something Blue? Tiffany bracelet.

Suppliers

Photographer – Katie Africano, Moonshine Studio of Photography. Katie is a client of mine, and it was so helpful to have someone we were comfortable with take our photos. Looking at the photos in sequence, it perfectly captured the entire day, from the small moments to the big ones.

Florist  – Maureen’s Wholesale Flower Market.

Videographer – Jason Holler, Holler Media Productions. We hadn’t hired a videographer, but when I got out of the limo, I saw that my dad had hired my cousin to shoot the wedding ceremony. Such a great surprise!

Music – Joy Ryde and the Hitmen Horns. My biggest request for our wedding was a live band. They had EVERYONE out on the dance floor and had a blast doing it.

First Dance – Can’t Take My Eyes off You

Celebrant – Father Joe Gato. Father Joe was the priest at my aunt & uncle’s wedding 30 years ago. He was so interactive at the ceremony and it became my favourite part of the whole day.

Stationery – Elli.

Menu – Filet, Panko Stuffed Chicken

Cake – Marsha Fortman. We tasted about 15 different variations, all so delicious, but went with a 'white' cake with almond buttercream. We had it at a friend’s wedding and I talked about it for weeks.

Bombonieres – Since indoor cycling is such a huge part of my life, our favours were the cutest little bicycle bottle openers.

Hair & Make-Up – Studio 806. In the words of my hairdresser, 'I hear you're obsessed with me?' I wouldn’t have trusted anyone else to do my makeup for the big day. Just like our photographer, Emma is a client and I’ve always been 100% comfortable with her.

Wedding Bands – Scherer’s Jewelers. They’re a family-owned business that has been around for over a hundred years. My engagement ring has my husband’s grandmother’s diamond in it, and he had the ring designed there. One of the most special things was coming home from our trip when we got engaged and showing his grandmother the ring! Naturally, we went there for our bands as well, I got a band that matches my engagement ring, as well as a really unique marquis and circle cut band.

Karla & Matt's Hinterland Teepee Wedding

Posted on 03 Mar, 2017
Karla & Matt's Hinterland Teepee Wedding

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband? When we were teenagers (16) through friends

How long have you been together? 13 years

Do you have a proposal story? Lugging a bottle of champagne around in his backpack with ring in hand, Matt tries to set the scene at the top of the ski fields in Queenstown New Zealand by dragging me to the very top of the mountain with a view of Mordor from the Lord of the Rings (I’m a huge fan). But the temperature at the top of the black run was arctic level and I wanted out quick smart. Being a beginner I turned into a human snowball trying to get down the mountain, exhausted and injured I sat at the top of the beginner slope and decided to do one last easy and manageable run before the park closed. This was our last day and Matt had no more time left to have his moment so as he fumbled around taking off his skis I got irritable and impatient. Next minute he whips this little box out and he’s down on one knee, then his gloves blow over the cliff edge, I point this out and he jumps down the mountain… I regret this immediately and was screaming “leave the gloves!” haha. Luckily it wasn’t as steep as it looked and up he climbs with gloves and open ring box with the ring still there and does a re-do. A skier watching nearby came over and took some pics too. It was the funniest and happiest moment of my life. Matt was just thankful it happened even though he didn’t get to execute his amazing proposal, it was still magical and very memorable.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? Sat 16 April 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Maleny Retreat, Maleny, Queensland

What made you choose there? Maleny has always been a stunning place, it’s just magical at the top of the mountain and the views are to die for, it really just has nice vibes there. We couldn’t imagine doing it anywhere else. Plus we needed to keep our venue quite local to our guests which were mostly from Brisbane.

How did you find it? Maleny Retreat was one of only a few venues Queensland to offer a DIY blank canvas and the option for guests to stay the night, even better that they were glamping tents as this flowed with our theme perfectly.

How was the weather on the day? The weather prior to our day was wet and very rainy, we were holding our breath and I didn’t have a wet-weather plan, on the Saturday morning we awoke to beautiful blue sky, and as the day went on we got cloud cover. It actually created a really beautiful moody feel to our photos. It was lovely because we got a stunning mixture of sunny and cloudy pics which completely change the feel of each of the photos. The night cleared completely and we were blessed with the most amazing starry sky for our outdoor reception. We could not have been luckier.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? I’m a bit superstitious so it needed to be an even numbered day but I also wanted a warm day not hot, so autumn or spring was the best choice. I chose April purely because it had the least predicted rainfall for those times of year and I wanted the odds in my favour for an outdoor wedding, so 16/4/16 it was - a date easy to remember and even numbers.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Boho, but I love desert hues so aimed for neutral colours such as beige, cream, peach and mint which all went well together I think

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? there are too many blogs to count so inspiration is endless but I’m a tiny bit fairylike at heart so comfort, good vibes and being outdoors meant a lot to us both so we designed our wedding around those key factors

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? The whole venue was DIY but we had a talented stylist and hire company to style for us. We did however make our own stained timber ceremony platform, over 30 milk crates for seating sprayed gold, attached cushions and I also bought and collected over 60 Samantha Wills carved timber boxes for reception table styling.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Whitney, Eve, Lyndal and Karrisa (all my best friends)

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Steve (brother), Mitch (best friend), Jarred (cousin), Blake (cousin)

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I saw the most recent range in a blog and the styles looked stunning, flattering, modern and also a bit boho with caught my attention.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I hadn’t

How many gowns did you try? Two, just the one I loved and one other style.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes Paddington, Brisbane

What did you especially like about your gown? I tried two on but they were separates which I loved so I ended up mashing the two together and buying a piece from each set; the 'Tillie' crop and 'Mabel' skirt. The 'Tillie' crop what exactly what I wanted and the mabel skirt was soooo flattering and comfortable I just loved it from the beginning.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Aje

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Shirts & Belts – ASOS, Pants & Bowties – H&M, Shoes – Windsor Smith

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wanted quite dramatic bold makeup because I was having a plain hairstyle so I didn’t want to overload with accessories. Apart from my flower crown I only had some gorgeous anklets from Forever Soles and a pearl and diamante chain garter from Grace Bijoux

Where did you get your shoes from? Zu Shoes Brisbane CBD

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I couldn’t decide on a headpiece so I just left it but on the day my hair was too plain and I needed something so my hair stylist Kirstie whipped up the most beautiful half head crown with some flowers out of the bouquets and just pinned it in. She is a rock star.

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? After you have chosen your items/vendors…stop researching and looking! You will always find something else to add or find other things you prefer. It will only create confusion and uncertainty. Stick with what you loved and then wait for the day to come.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t buy too early, you’d be surprised how much your style changes over a year or two so gowns I liked 3 years out I don’t like now. I think 8-11 months out from your wedding is a great timeframe, any longer and you risk changing your mind for something else you see. Don’t settle for “nice”… wait until you find “the one” it will feel amazing and be flattering from all angles, you will find it!

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. Having family arrive early in the morning to lend a hand (away from the bridal party of course) but on standby at the venue - made setting up our DIY wedding happen without any dramas. The day was executed perfectly because we had so many people to help in their own little way, everyone enjoyed contributing and having their own job to do so it really took the load off the bridal party and allowed us to simply enjoy the day we prepped so much for.

Suppliers

Florist – Stem Design

Photographer – Ash & Stone, Rebecca Robson

Videographer - None

Music – Family Friend; Jake Lacy

First Dance – None (we are both pretty shy haha)

MC – Family friend; Dean Butcher

Celebrant – Kari Celebrations; Kari

Stationery – Save the dates (Blushing Confetti & Floralovely Calligraphy), Leather Invites (Paper Birch Designs)

Menu – Noosa Catering

Cake – Family made; mother and sister-in-law

Bombonieres -  Chantilly & Coco

Hair – Evalyn Parsons Hair; Kirstie

Make up – Embellished Makeup; Gemma Elaine

Wedding Bands – Bride (Stephen Dibb Jewellers) Groom (Michael Hill)

Other – Pop Up Bar (Hello Mr Jenkins), Stylist (Judi from Little Gray Station) and Styling Hire (Hampton Event Hire), All signage, menu, table numbering & place cards (Kelsi from KB Lettering)

Bouquet Ribbon (Silk & Willow)

Exclusive NZ KWH Stockist- Paperswan Bride

Posted on 02 Mar, 2017
Exclusive NZ KWH Stockist- Paperswan Bride

We are excited to announce we now have an exclusive Karen Willis Holmes stockist in New Zealand.  Introducing Paperswan Bride, who have just opened up their second boutique in Christchurch after the success of their first in Wellington. At the moment, Karen Willis Holmes is stocked in the Christchurch store, with a delivery arriving in the Wellington store as soon as next week!  To add to this exciting news, Paperswan Bride in Wellington is holding a Karen Willis Holmes trunk show from 18th-30th April.  If you live in the area, make sure you don't miss out and book an appointment today. Some of our favourite styles from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes, WILD HEARTS, BESPOKE and D.Y.G Collections will be featuring in this event.

The new boutique in Christchurch will be stocking gowns such as the Anya, Caitlyn, Beatrice, Fontanne, Genevieve drape skirt, Ophelia and the Blake/Prea gown. The Wellington store will be stocking Anya, Genevieve skirt drape, Fontanne & the Beatrice gown.  This curated selection of Karen Willis Holmes gowns has been selected by owner Jen Barnett, who knows her way around a wedding dress. She brings so much passion, enthusiasm, and love to everything she does, stating "whether you’re a bohemian babe, hippy chick or vintage goddess, we can channel your inner fashionista and find you the perfect gown." 

Jen saw a gap in the market back in 2012, after she arrived back in NZ from living in London working for womenswear designer Stewart Parvin.  Her vision was simple. She wanted to share some of the incredibly inspiring local and international wedding dress labels that she adored with the rest of New Zealand. This, teamed with the unforgettable shopping experience she provides her brides makes both Paperswan Bride boutiques a store not to miss.  


Jen Barnett, owner of Paperswan Bride


The stunning boutique in Christchurch



The following gowns from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes, BESPOKE and D.Y.G. collections will feature in Paperswan Bride:
The 'Ophelia' gown from the BESPOKE collection


The 'Blake/Prea' gown from the D.Y.G. collection


The 'Anya' from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection


The 'Beatrice' from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection


The 'Caitlyn' from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection


The 'Fontanne' from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection


The 'Anya' from the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collection with the 'Genevieve' skirt drape from the WILD HEARTS collection.
 

STORE DETAILS 

Paperswan Bride - Christchurch
McKenzie & Willis Building, Ground Floor
181 High Street (Corner of High Street and Tuam Street) Christchurch 8011
NEW ZEALAND
Phone: +64 3 366 9956
Email: chch@paperswanbride.co.nz
Website: www.paperswanbride.co.nz

Paperswan Bride - Wellington 
94b Upland Road
Kelburn Village, Wellington 6012
NEW ZEALAND
Phone: +64 4 475 5945
Email: info@paperswanbride.co.nz
Website: www.paperswanbride.co.nz


TRUNK SHOW DETAILS 

Date: 18th-30th April
Location: Paperswan Bride- Wellington NZ
Featuring gowns from the BESPOKE, DYG, WILD HEARTS & KWH by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES Collections
MAKE AN APPOINTMENT

Stefania & Nile's Moody Melbourne Wedding

Posted on 01 Mar, 2017
Stefania & Nile's Moody Melbourne Wedding

Stefania and Nile fell in love- but this love story took a while.  Nile knew he had found something special the moment he laid eyes on Stefania.  For Stefania, it took a little longer to be convinced to go on a date with Nile.  Once she finally accepted his invitation, it became one of the most pivotal decisions of her life. She fell for Nile & 2 years later they tied the knot, in their beloved city of Melbourne.  They exchanged vows in Xavier Chapel, where Nile went to school, had in-between cocktails for the bridal party at The Everleigh followed by an extraordinary black-tie party for their friends and family at Movida Aqui. Every detail of this wedding was carefully thought through and delivered with perfection- oozing an abundance of style and vintage glamour- perfectly reflecting the couples colourful personalities.

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband?
Nile and I technically worked together – but we did different types of law and sat on different floors so we actually had very little to do with each other – that said, I really enjoyed his performance of Gangnam style (complete with enthusiastic dance moves) at the firm karaoke competition.
One day, he asked me out for coffee. He was more junior than me at work and (shock!) younger so I presumed he just wanted to be friends. We had some mutual friends so we started spending some time together – mainly going out on a Friday night and always ending up at FAD Gallery having way too many gin and tonics.
Then he actually asked me out properly – and I said no. I was convinced it wouldn’t work out.  Nile was convinced it would work out – so he continued to ask.  I was impressed by his persistence and confidence – but I continued to say no.
A few months later, I somehow came to my senses (probably helped by all our mutual friends encouraging the union) and gave him a chance.  I am so incredibly happy that I did.



How long have you been together?It was 3 days short of 2 years when we were married. When you know, you know.
 
Do you have a proposal story?
All Nile wanted was for the proposal to be a surprise. I am a ‘planner’ so this was an especially hard ask. To his credit – he really had me believing we wouldn’t get engaged for at least another year.
One ordinary Friday night, we had a delightful dinner with friends and Nile suggested we go to our favourite haunt – The Everleigh – for a couple of dry martinis.  The martinis hit the table and I had just finished saying ‘This place is my idea of heaven’ when Nile put a little black box on the table. I was in complete shock – I thought it was maybe a present for something else. But Nile looked so incredibly excited I realized what was happening – and didn’t know whether I was crying or laughing with excitement. It was simply perfect.


 
The Wedding
 
What was your wedding date? Saturday, 5 March 2016
 
Location (Ceremony and Reception)
 
Where? Xavier Chapel (Service) – Movida Aqui (Reception)

What made you choose there?
I always wanted to get married in a church and knew it would mean so much to my Dad. Nile knew it meant so much to me and agreed – but asked that we get married at Xavier where he went to school. I was very happy to get married at Xavier as a number of my cousins have been married there so it was special to me too.
We only had six months to plan our wedding and so we knew a lot of venues would have already been booked. We had decided that the thing we wanted most out of our wedding was to throw one epic party for our favourite people – so we decided to have a cocktail reception – which also gave us some greater choice with venues.
I had organised a few work Christmas functions for around 130 people at Movida Aqui and they couldn’t have gone better. Nile had never been so I took him there for dinner and introduced him to the food and the people – and Nile was immediately convinced. Andy and the team are simply the best. The food and drinks were spectacular and everyone said they had never received better service at a wedding – the waiters even joined us all on the dancefloor!

How was the weather on the day? Not too hot and not too cold – just right
 
What made you decide to get married on this particular date?

We actually only had one day we could get married.  When we became engaged, my father was unfortunately battling terminal cancer. We decided we wanted to get married in six months as then he could hopefully be at the wedding. To add extra complication, in about six months I was about to start a long-running trial.  I asked my boss if I could take a week off to get married – and luckily the one day that suited us was the one day in March that Xavier chapel wasn’t already booked out!

The Wedding Details
 
Theme (if any – colours, features, etc.)?
We both love art deco – so that sort of style definitely inspired us in a number of our choices – from our outfits, to the invitations and the rings. That said, more importantly, we just wanted all of our loved ones to look their most fantastic and then show them an amazing time. So we decided to make the flowers and the venue look elegant but bright and make the event ‘Black Tie Invited’ – which was our polite way of saying ‘Wear a tux – but if you don’t have a tux, just wear something fantastic!’
 
Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?  I think Nile poured his heart and soul into our wedding playlist by hand-picking every song (and song order) for the whole night, if that counts?
 


Bridal Party
 
Bridesmaids – who/relationship?
Pia & Kate – two of my oldest and dearest friends from Perth. Sarah – my lovely Cousin & Paul (my bridesman) – one of my favourite men, I was his best lady when he was married

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Matt H – one of Nile’s oldest family friends. Gerard, Matt and Harry – Nile’s best pals from Xavier
 
Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Emily & Evie – Pia’s 2 yr old twin girls & Olivia – Sarah’s little girl

 



Wedding Gown (the most important part!)
 
What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I wanted a classically elegant gown that didn’t cost the earth. Nile wanted me to look like Michelle Pfieffer from Scarface – but potentially slightly more church appropriate.  I spoke to a couple of girls from work and they suggested Karen Willis Holmes would be perfect!
 
Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before?
One of my friends from Sydney – who has also recently been featured on your website – bought her dress from KWH and it was simply stunning.

How many gowns did you try? About 4 – but I think I knew the 'Aster' was the one from the start.
 
Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? High Street – Armadale
 
What did you especially like about your gown?
The 'Aster' just sits so beautifully – it is perfectly made to drape over curves. It also met the most important criteria – I knew I could dance up a storm wearing it!



Fashion
 
Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier?

I was at a wedding a while ago and one of the bridesmaids was wearing a gorgeous navy blue full length dress. When it came to choose the bridesmaids dresses, I asked where it came from, and found out it was from Zimmermann.
The girls and I went shopping one day and went to Zimmermann first off. Completely unexpectedly the girls all loved the dress I had first seen and asked if they could all wear the same one. The whole experience took half an hour, everyone was happy and we had plenty of time for coffee and cake afterward.
I also had a bridesman so he hired a tuxedo from Prinzi in a slightly different style to the groomsmen. He only came into Melbourne from Perth the night before the wedding and the team at Prinzi were able to have him suited even with no time to spare.
 
Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits?
Nile’s favourite place in Melbourne is P Johnson Tailors. He has had clothes made by P Johnson before and they always turned out perfectly – so there was no doubt he would go there to get his tuxedo made. His tux ended up being so perfect he basically hasn’t taken it off since the wedding!  Nile’s main accessory was an elegant “Mr Lincoln” red rose from Vasette. He loved it so much he has been ordering them for every black tie occasion since.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party?
I already had this lovely pair of vintage earrings I found on Johnston Street in Fitzroy – and they worked perfectly with the dress. A little bit of sparkle but not too much. I have to confess that I told my bridemaids to wear whatever they felt like – they all have fantastic taste, so I didn’t really need to worry about it.

Where did you get your shoes from?
Georgie’s Bridal Shoes in Perth. This is an amazing little store in Perth that has shoes and bags for weddings in every colour imaginable. The owner knows everything about colour – I suggested my dress was white and the owner looked at the photo and was able to tell it was ivory straight away. Even without seeing the dress in person, the shoes were a perfect match.
 
Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I actually bought a headpiece from a lovely store in Perth but in the end decided not to wear it – the Aster gown was already so decadent I don’t think it needed much else!



Other:
 
What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Your wedding day is the best – but there is a lot to do – much more than you will ever realise. Set up a task list and try to do a few things each month and all will be well.
On a more fun note, we took our bridal party to The Everleigh for some cocktails and snacks between the ceremony and reception. It was a really lovely part of the day and I would recommend a cocktail break to everyone!
 
What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown?
Decide how much you want to spend first – and then only go look at dresses that are within your price range. There is no point falling in love with a million dollar dress!
 
Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day.
My dad being able to be at the wedding was the most special part of our day.
He passed away only 5 months after the wedding and it is so special to remember how happy he was that day. My favourite photo of him is the one of him sitting with his brother and laughing his raucous laugh during the speeches.
On a lighter note – the funniest would be the flower girls. Pia had warned us that having 2 year olds as flower girls could have its complications. Nile told Pia that if the twins behaved he would be disappointed. The twins didn’t disappoint. Evie planted like a Labrador and refused to walk down the aisle despite the coaching of her father. Emily took a more direct approach and sprinted down the aisle screaming and crying. Olivia then took the stage and walked down the aisle like a perfect angel. All I could hear from outside the church was everyone erupting into fits of laughter – it was the perfect start to the ceremony.

Something Old? Vintage earrings.
Something New? The dress!
Something Borrowed? Do the hair pins from the hairdresser count?
Something Blue? Thank the Lord for that little blue ribbon sewn into the back of every Karen Willis Holmes gown.


Suppliers

Florist – Vasette
Vasette is our local florist and we buy flowers for the house there every weekend. It is such a wonderful happy group of people who are so unbelievably talented at their jobs. Nicholas (Head of Weddings) knows how to turn a vision into a beautiful reality. He did the flowers for our engagement party as well – and everything Nicholas has done for us ends up being just perfect.
 
Photographer –
It's Beautiful Here
Kat and Scout were perfect. They are the sort of people you just want to spend time with – and made us feel so relaxed. We are so grateful for the beautiful photos they took – the shots of all the fun on the dancefloor are phenomenal. We loved them so much that one of Nile’s groomsmen just used Kat and Scout for his wedding!

Music - DJ Josh – Rutherford Entertainment
DJ Josh was great on the night. We both love dancing and so spent hours coming up with our perfect playlist. DJ Josh was more than happy to put our wish for a fantastic dancefloor into action.
 
First Dance – A fantastic medley created by Nile – Let’s Stay Together / Let’s Get Married Remix / Happy ;)
 
MC – Our friends Matt and Lucy J
 
Celebrant – Father Chris Gleeson
He went to school with my uncle so it was lovely to have a family connection. Father Chris was just great and totally relaxed – he was really happy for us to choose readings and music that meant something to us and did a wonderful homily where he spoke about the importance of gratitude in our lives.

Stationery – Paperless Post
We wanted a clean and simple design for our invitations and we found just the thing from Paperless Post. We sent electronic Save the Dates but when it was time for the paper invitations, Paperless Post wasn’t yet delivering in Australia. Luckily we were able to ship the invitations to Nile’s Dad in L.A. and then to Australia – but we believe they are delivering to Australia now!
 
 Menu – Movida Aqui
Andy and his team created an amazing selection of food and drinks within our budget. Everything at Movida Aqui is delicious so we didn’t have a worry in the world when it came to the food. In addition, given that we love cocktails – we also had Sangria and Spanish Iced Tea cocktails on arrival, gin and tonics –and then later, bottles of Scotch and rounds of Pedro’s Negronis (a negroni with a coffee and sherry twist - a massive crowd pleaser!) with dessert.
 
Cake – Fig & Salt
Cassandra made us the most gorgeous cake. It was three layers and three different flavours – so even our gluten free friends could enjoy the deliciousness.

Hair – Gypsy and the Wolf
Kate is my usual hairdresser and knows exactly how to create a gorgeous vintage look. She is also one of the most relaxed people alive which makes her a wonderful addition to a wedding morning.

Make up - Livia Milazzo
I met Livia through Kate and she was amazing. Livia is such a talent and completely understands what look you want to go for.

Wedding Bands – Rutherford
The team at Rutherford Antiques were wonderful to deal with. They helped Nile with the proposal ring and then we went back and found my antique art deco engagement ring there. They also made Nile’s gorgeous rose gold wedding band – and then managed to track us down an antique art deco wedding band that goes so perfectly with the engagement ring it looks like they were made for each other.
 
Transport –  Classic and Prestige Car Hire
We hired some 1960s white Rolls Royce Silver Clouds from Classic and Prestige Car Hire. The cars were immaculate and, perhaps even more importantly, the service from the drivers on the day was excellent.

Oscars 2017 Red Carpet Round-Up

Posted on 28 Feb, 2017
Oscars 2017 Red Carpet Round-Up

So, our favourite Tinseltown event took place last night- The 89th Annual Acadamy Awards.  At the Karen Willis Holmes HQ, we look for absolutely any excuse to gush over amazing fashion & the extraordinary opulence of the Oscars is one we raced into work for yesterday! Modesty saw a comeback- with beautiful full skirts and high, Victorian-era necklines teamed with long sleeves.  Rich fire engine reds took centre stage, but it was the subdued neutrals and glowing golds that stuck a cord with us.  We are obsessing over the iridescent shine of embellishments, beading, and fringing paired back with demure silhouettes.  

For brides getting married in 2017, take note as some of the key looks displayed at the Oscars are sure to influence Bridal trends this year.  The emphasis on unfussy style was the key message and below are our selection of Best Dressed celebrities from the night who stole the show. 


Isabelle Huppert in Armani Prive


Naomie Harris in Custom Calvin Klein


Darby Stanchfield in Georges Chakra


Hailee Steinfeld in Ralph & Russo 


Chrissy Teigen in Zuhair Murad Couture 


Karlie Kloss wore this simple, asymmetrical Stella McCartney gown


Olivia Culpo in a custom made fringed Marchesa gown 


Emma Stone in Givenchy Haute Couture 


Jessica Biel in Kaufmanfranco


Charlize Theron in Christian Dior Couture


Felicity Jones opted for a tea length, tulle Christian Dior gown with subtle gold foiling 


Nicole Kidman in Armani Prive


One of our favourite looks of the night- Emma Roberts wore Vintage Armani Prive


Taraji P. Henderson looked ravishing and curvaceous in a custom-made Alberta Ferretti gown


​Ginnifer Goodwin in Zuhair Murad


Ruth Negga stopped the show in Valentino
 

Danica & Andy's beautiful South Coast wedding

Posted on 27 Feb, 2017
Danica & Andy's beautiful  South Coast wedding

Danica and Andy wed in the beautiful & picturesque location of Bushbank, Kiama Heights in New South Wales.  The couple who have been together for 9 years chose simplicity with strapping punches of magentas, primrose yellows and violets throughout for their wedding.  The guests picked up the memo about the colour too, arriving in striking shades that stood out.  This helped pull together all of the colours of the wedding captured by the very talented David Moore, as well as creating a fun, vibrant and playful vibe which complimented the stunning couple perfectly.  
Danica wore the Zoe/Mimi combination from the D.Y.G collection- an elegant, simple slim fitting silhouette with a plunging neckline and delicate spaghetti straps. The bodice cinches in at the waist before falling into an elegant slim fitting skirt with a split up the middle, all beautifully draped in a heavy twill.  

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met at High School – Andy came to my school in year 11 and then left later that year. We have been together ever since!

How long have you been together? 10 years.

Do you have a proposal story? It was our 9 year anniversary, we went for a walk from Rose Bay to Watsons Bay in Sydney and on the way back, right near Stockland house he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 3/12/2016

Location? Bushbank - Kiama Heights

What made you choose there? We wanted a mix of relaxed/ coastal but still for it to feel like a wedding and Bushbank did that for us.

 



How did you find it? On the internet.

How was the weather on the day? The day started off grey but as soon as the ceremony started the sun came out and it was beautiful the rest of the day.

Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? It was the same date as my grandparents!! It was their 59th wedding anniversary the date we married, so we will be able to celebrate our 1st anniversary with their 60th!

 

The Wedding Details

Theme? Bright! Kept everything simple and natural/ rustic. I had lots of bright flowers though :)

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest mainly!

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? Most of it was D.I.Y  - Andy is very handy and he made our table numbers and seating chart. We just had wooden discs on the table and sprayed jars gold as our vases for flowers.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? All friends – Carly (MOH), Lauren, Dani, Mel, Haylee.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? David (brother), Grant (brother), Ryan (friend), Sam (friend), Ryan (Friend).

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Heather was my flower girl (My Grandmother whose wedding anniversary it was!)

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Danica looked stunning in the 'Zoey/Mimi combination gown from our D.Y.G collection. See more here

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I looked online- I wanted simple but beautiful and all Karen Willis Holmes dresses seem to tick the box for this!

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Only online/ Instagram.



How many gowns did you try? Only two!! My first pick was the one I ended up choosing.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? I purchased it from the Paddington store, Sydney.

What did you especially like about your gown? I LOVED the bottom of my gown, but the whole thing felt so comfortable. It didn’t have any particular detail on it, but that is what I loved as it suited me and my personality so well. 

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? White runway

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Peter Jackson

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? The girls had rings from Samantha Wills, the boys got ties were made from Woodyroo

Where did you get your shoes from? Wanted shoes

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? My headpiece was ordered from Summer Blossom online, veil was borrowed from my MOH.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Just enjoy the day! Everything always works out. I can honestly say I hardly stressed at all in the lead up to the wedding and everything was perfect! The lead up can become overwhelming as you are always thinking if you forgot anything or need all of these things, when really what does it matter? As long as you are marrying the person you want to spend your life with, everything else will work out perfectly!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Go with what makes you comfortable and makes you feel most like you ... but a more beautiful version!!

Something Old? Grandmother's engagement ring

Something New? Lingerie

Something Borrowed? MOH clutch

Something Blue? My Mum’s ring with a blue sapphire stone. 

Suppliers

PhotographerDavid Moore or @daveymoorephoto - Instagram. Dave had the help of his wife Leah Moore or @leahmoorephoto – Instagram) who does equally as beautiful photos, and together they captured our day perfectly.

Florist – N/A

Videographer – N/A

Music – Dan SearleDan was great and got our music spot on, would recommend him to anyone!

Celebrant – Andrew Straney, he was great and really brought out Andrew and my story within the ceremony.

Stationery – N/A

Menu – N/A

Cake – N/A

Bombonieres – N/A

Hair – Haylee Simpson

Make-Up – Sara Mead 

 

BRISBANE MOVING SAMPLE SALE

Posted on 24 Feb, 2017
BRISBANE MOVING SAMPLE  SALE

Karen Willis Holmes in Paddington, Brisbane is packing their bags and moving to an INCREDIBLE new location nearby (stay tuned, all will be revealed shortly!).  Therefore, this calls for a bit of spring cleaning and a sample sale will be taking place on Friday 10th and Saturday 11th March! Do not miss this amazing opportunity to pick up a wedding gown with couture-like quality and innovative design at a bargain price.   With sample gowns from BESPOKE, Wild Hearts and KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collections being sold at reduced prices starting from 50% off, this sale is a must for any bride-to-be. Our lips are sealed as to what styles will be in the sale, so you will have to come down and see for yourself. 

Please note only sample sale gowns will be available over the weekend. If you would like to try on full priced gowns you will need to make an additional appointment at our beautiful new Brisbane boutique (click here to make an appointment). Any of the gowns are sold in their current condition and will be final sale only. 

Across these two days, we will be accepting cash, MasterCard, Visa and Eftpos.

Sample Gown List 

  • Eliza skirt
  • Frances skirt
  • Lindy train
  • Clara
  • Genevieve
  • Tyler
  • Milani
  • Lina
  • Isla
  • Dahlia
  • Bonnie
  • Stella
  • Nadia
  • Juliet
  • Imogen
  • Sequin peplum
  • Lila jacket

Sale details

Trading hours
Friday 10th March- 10am-5.30pm
Saturday 11th March- 9am-5.30pm

Location
Shop 5, 2 Latrobe Terrace, Paddington, QLD, 4064
Ph- +61 7 3368 2216
Email- info@karenwillisholmes.com

 

Chris & Corrine's Colourful Osteria Wedding

Posted on 22 Feb, 2017
Chris & Corrine's  Colourful Osteria Wedding

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband?

We met at a bar on New Year's Eve. Chris couldn’t take a hint on the night, so the next day I tracked him down on Facebook and messaged him.

How long have you been together? 4 ½ years

Do you have a proposal story? It was a simple proposal on New Year’s Day after a pub meal and a walk along the beach

 

 

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? Saturday 14 May 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Both were at Osteria, Casuarina

What made you choose there? We loved the Northern NSW area, around Kingscliff. I had looked at a few venues, and Osteria’s menu was by far my favourite as I loved the idea of having a table banquet/share platter menu. The venue was what we wanted with an outdoor ceremony area, connected to an indoor reception with a rustic industrial feel.The food was really important to me, so we did eat at the restaurant before booking, and our guests are still raving about the arancini balls!

How did you find it? Via the Casuarina Weddings website and a lot of stalking on wedding blogs.

How was the weather on the day? It was amazing! We had clear blue skies, not a cloud in the sky. We picked May because of the mild weather and clear skies and the day turned it on!

The Wedding Details

Theme?  I created a name for the theme Industrial Luxe. I loved the industrial elements with copper tones and exposed bulbs and we then glammed it up! Everything we picked was what we liked, not necessarily sticking to one particular idea, but it all worked together. I included a lot of darker tones, in the flowers and the bridesmaids in French navy.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest! What an amazing creation that is! I spent a lot of time on wedding and photographer’s blogs, pinning ideas I liked.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? I planned and styled the wedding myself. We went and set up the venue the day before.

 

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids who/relationship?

Maid of Honour: Kate

Best friend & Bridesmaid: Natalie

Groomsmen who/relationship?

Best Man: Jim

Groomsman: Todd (Groom’s brother)

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes?

I had seen a KWH gown on a couple of blogs that I absolutely fell in love with and wanted to try on, so KWH was a must on our shopping trip.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Have seen KWH gowns on a number of blogs and in magazines.

How many gowns did you try? I had one shopping trip with my Mum and future Mum-In-Law to Brisbane.  We went to about 4 stores, and would have tried on at least 10 – 15 different gowns across all the stores.  I had gone in looking for another gown, which was no longer in stock, and tried on a few other gowns, before putting Poppy on hold for the day.  We did a few more stores, and eventually came back at the end of the day, tried Poppy back on and knew after all those other gowns it was the one.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)?  The Brisbane KWH store What did you especially like about your gown? I suffer from a nervous/excited rash across my arms, chest and neck, and knew this was going to an issue on the big day.  I went in knowing I didn’t want a strapless gown for this reason.  I also am not the “princess” dress type of girl.  I wanted something unique and modern and that no one would have seen before.  Poppy fit all the criteria!

 

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Zimmerman

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Bruno’s Suits on the Gold Coast

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party?

My gown was quite a big statement so didn’t want to go over the top with accessories. Choose rose gold earring & headpiece and wore my Grandmother’s diamond brooch.

Where did you get your shoes from? Myer

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Headpiece was my Etsy.

 

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? It’s true what they say the day goes so quickly so just take everything in and don’t sweat the small stuff.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Don’t be influenced by the fashion. Choose something that is you and you will look back on the photos and still love it in 50 years time.

Something Old? My Grandmother let me borrow a diamond brooch she wore on her wedding day. It is my great great Grandmother’s.

Something New? The dress!

Something Borrowed? Gold crystal champagne flutes from my parents.

Something Blue? Lucky there was a gorgeous blue bow sewn into my dress. 

Suppliers

Photographer: Figtree Wedding Photography

Florist: Elyssium Blooms

Music: Chris Hutchinson & Peppers Entertainment

First Dance: Crazy Love, Michael Buble

Celebrant: Jo-Ellen Moynihan

Stationery: Invitation design on Vistaprint. I then designed matching favours & seating plan myself using the initial design.

Cake: Cakeit4U

Bombonieres: Chocoblock Chocolates (which double as our place cards!)

Hair and Make-Up: Harpier

Wedding Bands: Handcraft Studio

Reception ceiling installation: Elyssium Lighting

Jess & Ian's Stylish Victorian Wedding

Posted on 20 Feb, 2017
Jess & Ian's Stylish Victorian Wedding

AS FEATURED BY: 

Following a Thailand engagement (that included a smiley faced flashing plastic ring), Jessica and Ian spent their 15-month engagement envisioning a warehouse wedding… that is until they decided to make things sweet and simple by getting married in an already set-up venue.

Farm Vigano was the first and only venue of this kind that we looked at. We’d been there for lunch before and loved the property (not to mention the food) – you could easily be somewhere in Tuscany if it wasn’t for the surrounding Australian bushland,” explains Jessica, who utilised Hello May faves I Got You Babe Weddings  and Larsen Jewellery to help pull off their special day.

“We opted for a very relaxed day… Good food, decent alcohol and great music. The thought of a traditional wedding didn’t really appeal to us, which is why we decided to go for a casual celebration instead,” she tells us, adding that her Karen Willis Holmes wedding dress was one for the memory books.

Happily married and living a life full of life, the couple says that one of their best decisions was hiring legend videographer Light Noise Films. “We originally thought it may be overkill but my parents talked us into it and I’m so grateful that they did. The video is a little piece of the day that we can share for years to come.”

 

CREDITS 

Photographer -  I Got You Babe Weddings 

Bridal gown + Veil - 'Blake/Prea'  Karen Willis Holmes 

Shoes -  Wittner 

Accessories -  Shopbop Christie Nicolaides 

Hair -  Kim Tavares 

Make-Up -  Blanka Dudas 

Rings -  Larsen Jewellery 

Bridesmaid dresses -  Manning Cartell 

Bridesmaid shoes -  Zomp  

Bridesmaid gifts -  Mecca 

Kilt, jacket and socks -  McCalls Ltd 

Shirt -  Rhodes and Beckett 

Tie / Bow tie -  David Jones 

Shoes - Aquila 

Florist - Tribal Rose 

Stationery -  The Graphic Quill  

Printer -  Stadium Signs + Bambra Press 

Ceremony, reception + catering -  Farm Vigano, VIC

Food trucks and carts - Bianco Latte 

Prop and furniture hire -  Harry the Hirer Georgeous  

Marquee / teepee and Lighting / sound hire - Harry the Hirer 

Entertainment -  Ross Bates and Perfect Day Music 

Celebrant -  Andrew Redman 

Transport -  Murray’s Coaches 

Cinematographer -  Light Noise Films.

Caris & Ben's Stylish Sydney Harbourisde Wedding

Posted on 17 Feb, 2017
Caris & Ben's Stylish Sydney Harbourisde Wedding

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband? Ben and I met a long time ago – he was my unrequited teenage crush. I was in Year 7 and had been dragged along to watch my oldest brother’s basketball game and Ben was in that team. He said ‘hi’ to me, thinking nothing more of it, but I was starry-eyed. My brothers teased me about it for years! However more than a decade later, thanks to a chance encounter at a work party Ben hadn’t planned to attend, he got in touch. The rest, as they say, is history.

How long have you been together? Our first date was Valentine’s Day 2013 (yep, brave), so three and a half years.

Do you have a proposal story? It’s something of a family joke that unlike his brothers, Ben is not at all musically inclined. However Ben asked his dad (who had then recently been diagnosed with MND) to teach him one song on the guitar and spent the following months secretly mastering it. Imagine my surprise when Ben organized a picnic at our favourite spot by the water in Sydney, and disappeared at one point, only to return with a guitar, which he started to play – and play really well. He rewrote the lyrics to a song so it incorporated our story and at the end, reached into the guitar case to pull out a box and bent down on one knee… The ring was designed by Ben and Jacque Fine Jewellery, with the central diamonds from his great grandmother’s engagement ring.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? April 15, 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Ceremony: Sacred Heart Church, Mosman; Reception: The Grounds of Alexandria

What made you choose there? We just wanted somewhere that felt intimate and not too formal – we really just wanted our wedding to be a huge celebration, with shared platters of delicious food, good music and wonderful people. We looked for quite a while for our reception venue, but as soon as we saw The Grounds, it immediately felt like ‘us’. Similarly, Sacred Heart is just a beautiful little church and felt very welcoming.

How did you find it? I could not rave about The Grounds enough. Ben and I had obviously never organized anything this big before and they helped us every step of the way in the lead-up and made sure everything went smoothly on the big day. The location itself is gorgeous, but combine that with fantastic staff and the exceptional food (oh my, the food!!) and it was perfect. The people are Sacred Heart were lovely and personable, and as hands on as you needed. 

How was the weather on the day? Beautiful. Sunny and a touch windy.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We needed to time it when Ben’s brother Paul was home from the UK, which was significant 1) because he’s Ben’s brother, but 2) because he married us.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Navy, white and burgundy. I love film and television, and Ben is a fan of Marvel superheroes, so we also had a few cheeky pop culture and superhero nods here and there.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest. I’d never used it before and it became such a lifesaver.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?

  • We designed our invitations and the wedding booklets ourselves and had them printed at iDesign & Print.
  • I hand wrote all the table cards, by finding a calligraphy font I liked on Google and using it as a guide with a white pen on dark blue cards.
  • I also baked personalized shortbread biscuits for every guest as a party favour, using cookie cutters bought through Printsicle via Etsy. I also made slightly salty/slightly sweet popcorn, to tie in with our love of movies.
  • Every guest was also given a personalized Lego-style figurine to assemble at their table. We matched the figurines, whether it was Batman, or Thor, or Queen Elsa, to a person and individually wrote them a description that incorporated not only the amazing traits of the character, but also the guest we were giving it too. It meant that we were able to let every single person know how much they meant to us, and how thrilled we were about them being there. And yes, our mums both got Wonder Woman.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Hayley and Emily – both highschool friends.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Cavan – best mate from highschool. And Nicholas – younger brother.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Karen Willis Holmes was the very first store I went to. Everyone told me it would take weeks of searching and dozens of gowns before I would find the right one. But one gown at Karen Willis Holmes had caught my eye at One Fine Day and so we made it our first stop in a day of shopping.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? We went to One Fine Day for inspiration and I saw some of the gowns in the runway show.

How many gowns did you try? When we came into the store, my mum and bridesmaid picked out a couple of choices, but I went straight for this one particular gown. It was the first one I tried on. And that was it. It was unanimous – this was the dress. I tried on a few others, but the bar had been set and nothing else quite reached it. The time-frame to make the dress was tight because of the beautiful detail in it, but the amazing team at Karen Willis Holmes made it happen. As I was leaving the store, I asked the name of the dress. When the reply came “Ava”, I was stunned. I’ve been writing a novel for a couple of years and the dress had the same name as my main character. What are the chances? Believe in coincidence or not – I think it was meant to be.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? From the Paddington Sydney store, with the help of the lovely Hannah Kate. Also a big thanks to Susan who was at our fittings and just fantastic.

What did you especially like about your gown? Where do I start?! The fit, the intricate detail, the way the sheer overlay floated and how it could be removed when the dance floor got started. The look was a bit art deco, similar to my engagement ring (and which we also got vintage cars to tie-in with as well). There was also an indescribable element I’m sure other brides are familiar with. It just felt like ‘me’. I never thought I would wear a strapless gown – I actually didn’t have my heart set on anything. But once I put it on everything clicked into place. And I was honored to discover I would be the first bride to wear the Ava gown.

Fashion

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? InSitchu

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore a Swarovski bracelet we bought through Karen Willis Holmes and borrowed my mum’s Bulgari earrings. My bridesmaids bought/brought their own shoes and jewellery. I gifted them with cuffs from Jezebel Charms via Etsy, not for the wedding day, but so they had something unique to say thank you.

Where did you get your shoes from? Nine West.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Elizabeth Bower lace patterned hairpiece with Swarovski pearl and crystal accents. From Babushka Ballerina.

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding?

  • Create boards on Pinterest. It meant when we were organizing flowers/table decoration, we could easily convey the kind of look we wanted.
  • Yes, it’s stressful. But all the organization and emailing in the lead-up to the big day, meant that on that day, we could just relax and soak it all up.
  • Don’t do too much DIY. I loved making the cookies and Lego descriptions and they made all the difference on the day. But for some time I entertained the idea of creating our wedding cake as well and I’m so glad I didn’t. Making your wedding personal is wonderful, but having a break-down trying to achieve it by making absolutely everything would not be.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? I felt lucky in that it was the first shop and first gown I tried on. But I know it’s not the case with everyone. But don’t settle and also, make sure it’s what you want – not what everyone else wants. It’s easier said than done, but when you’re walking down that aisle, you want to feel like you’re still ‘you’ and not someone you don’t recognize. 

Something Old AND Blue? I had a little blue handkerchief from my childhood, which my bridesmaids held onto me for the day.

Something New? Swarovski bracelet.

Something Borrowed? My mum’s Bulgari earrings.

Suppliers

Florist – Church florals: Sydney Floral Events; Bouquets, button holes and Reception Florals: The Grounds Florals by Silva

Photographer – White Lane Studio

Videographer – White Lane Studio. We chose White Lane because I stumbled across one of their stunning wedding videos while searching for reception venues. With my film background, the video was important to me, and I was struck by how they capture the mood and tone of the day. Their photos are equally gorgeous. The way they incorporate natural light and the colours are beautiful. They’re also very relaxed and just a tonne of fun to have around for the day.

Music – At the ceremony: Lauren (vocals/key) and Matt (acoustic guitar) from Event Entertainers; At the reception: 6-piece band from Baker Boys Band.

First Dance – “I’ve Got a Question For You” by Rhett Miller

MC – Bride’s brother Jarrad

Celebrant – Ben’s brother Fr Paul Rowse

Cake – Sugar Bee Cakes, who did an amazing job creating a pretty quirky Captain America/Black Widow wedding cake with the lyrics “Home is Wherever I’m With You” – the song that I walked down the aisle to (an acoustic version sung against the guitar backing of Dirty Paws by Of Monsters and Men)

Bombonieres – Made ourselves

Hair – Chervonne and Sarah from Toni & Guy Manly

Make-Up – Make Up by Elizabeth, who does really beautiful, natural-looking make-up

Wedding Bands – Jacque Fine Jewellery

Extra features – Invitations and booklets designed by us and printed by iDesign & Print in Newtown (who also cut and folded the placecard paper)

Cars – Fifth Avenue Vintage Automobiles

Natasha & Todd's Margaret River Wedding

Posted on 16 Feb, 2017
Natasha & Todd's Margaret River Wedding

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband? We were set up by a mutual friend

How long have you been together? 5 years

Do you have a proposal story? Todd proposed on the Busselton Jetty, Western Australia on a Friday at sunset. We then spent the weekend down south at Bunker Bay. It was the most amazing blue sky weather for August!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 14th November 2015

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Hay Shed Hill Winery, Margaret River, Western Australia          

What made you choose there?  We knew we wanted a down south wedding, both loving the region and growing up holidaying there. Hay Shed had everything we were looking for … an incredible chef, Jake Drachenberg, a relaxed atmosphere, friendly staff and the beautiful vista over the vines.

How was the weather on the day?  We woke up to blue skies and enjoyed them all day. The clouds came over in the evening for a pink sky sunset and the night closed with a lightning storm in the distance over the vines.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Whites, greys and greens. We wanted it to be simple, classic and natural.  We wanted it to be about good food and good company. To feel like a large dinner party for our nearest and dearest.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from?  I loved trawling pinterest for ideas and really enjoyed the planning stage! Our venue already suited our style so we didn’t feel we needed to decorate too much. We both like a minimal style and wanted to try and keep things simple.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? My mum, Todd’s mum and I spent the afternoon together sewing linen napkins for the table. We also collected rose petals for months that our guests threw over us as we walked down the isle. I loved the idea of being showered by rose petals collected by family and friends.
I also hand wrote the escord cards for the table and soaked off labels from Hay Shed Wine bottles and replaced them with table numbers.

Chef, Jake Drachenberg takes so much pride in his food and created the most incredible menu for our wedding day. Something Todd and I will always be grateful for! It was hands down the biggest thing people raved about after the wedding!
We thought it was only right to paint up the menu so guests could read what they were being served. I hand painted it on to ply wood and stood it next to our “find your seat”  board.

Our whole dessert table was also DIY. A close friend, Krissie baked and cooked up a storm! Together we styled the table with concrete pots and gum leaves.

Our bonboniere were also homemade. Little jars of chutney and a play on words – TnT .. Todd and Tash.Together with family we spent the day making a tomato chutney so our guests to get to take home. A friend’s wedding a few years back had the same idea and we loved being able to take it home and enjoy it over the weeks to come. When it came time for our wedding, there was no doubt we were going to pinch this idea!

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?
Maid of Honour, Brodie – primary school/high school friend
Sofie – university friend
Rachel – high school friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship?
Best Man – Brad, brother of Todd
Luke – highschool friend
Liam – highschool friend

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship?

Flower girl – Todd’s cousin’s child, Sophie
Page boy – Tash’s cousin, Macario
Macario carried a home made ring dish that was inscribed with a line from our vows … which was taken from our first dance lyrics .. “I’ll wait for you and should I fall behind, wait for me”
Our rings were tied with a piece of grey ribbon and rest on this clay dish.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I had an appointment at Zanzi’s Bridal, Subiaco. She’s a close friend of Karen’s … and said that she thought my style would more suit Karen’s designs. She told me a new store was opening in Perth and I should go and check it out. I had to wait a month or so for the shop to open and then I made an appointment.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I hadn’t!

How many gowns did you try? Only three! Third’s the charm

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Perth

What did you especially like about your gown? I really loved the two piece. I wanted some lace but was finding the full lace gowns too overwhelming. I wanted something more modern and light. I also wanted something simple, no layers, or tulle, or sparkle! The 'Sienna' gown was classic, and light, but modern and just elegant. I loved it. Still do!!

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Amsale in Dove Grey. I wanted full length gowns and let the girls pick the style they liked.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Myer.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? The girls selected their own shoes to wear with the dress in various nude colours.
Brodie and Rachel wore drop earrings I found on Hardtofind and Sofie (who wore strapless) wore a bar necklace from Samantha Wills

Where did you get your shoes from? My shoes were from Tony Bianco

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My Mum made my veil. I wanted just a very simple strip of tulle and only wore it for the ceremony. My headpiece was from etsy… Anna Marguerite …It was a gold leaf comb which matched my little gold leaf earrings which were my Mums.

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Work with people you love and enjoy the company of! Every one of our vendors were so wonderful. People we really admired for their work but also people we could see ourselves being friends with. This made the process so much more enjoyable!!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Be patient! And shop around!

Something Old? I wore my Mum’s gold leaf stud earrings which I’ve always loved. My Aunty also gave me my Nanna’s ring on the morning of the wedding as a surprise. It was such a beautiful moment and I’ll always treasure that memory of her popping in that morning. I wore this ring on my right hand. It was nice to have Nanna, who has passed, there with us.

Something New? My dress!

Something Borrowed? Mum’s earrings also fit this category!

Something Blue? Todd has always called me “Blue” because of my eyes. I figured that was all the blue I needed.

Suppliers

Florist True Love by Laura. Laura was incredible. She owns the Yelverton Protea Farm, a local native flower farm in Margaret River. She was an absolute joy to work with and I loved our florals.  She made an incredible wreath that hung from the gumtree we were married under. It was then carried up and hung over our dessert table.

Photographer – Eric Ronald. Eric flew over from the east to be a part of our wedding day. Photography was right at the top of both of our lists for Todd and I so we knew it had to be someone special. Eric was just so friendly and warm to work with. He truly loves weddings and committed so much time to be with us the day before and all through our wedding day. He was even there until midnight photographing the lightning!  He caught some incredibly beautiful candid moments and was able to capture the beauty of the south west which we wanted. We can’t speak highly enough of him.

Videographer – My uncle works as a film maker in Sydney. His little son was our page boy! We are so grateful he played the role of family member and videographer for the day! We’ll always be grateful for the footage he captured.

Music – DJ Damo for the dancefloor. My brother, Chris played guitar and sang at the ceremony. And a collection of my uni friends (we all studied music together) sang and played after dinner in a surprise for Todd! His favourite song, Dancing in the Dark – bruce springsteen.

First Dance – If I should Fall behind – Bruce Springsteen. We both heard this a few years ago when we were in the Macedon Ranges watching Bruce perform at Hanging Rock. It’s a wonderful ballad that has lyrics which really resonated with us. We used them in our vows.

MC – Todd’s university friends, Dave MeHarry and Josh Johnson

Celebrant – Laurissa Knowles

Stationery – The Little Press. Emily created our custom letterpress invites to mirror the gumleaves and native flowers that we so love!! She was just the most beautiful person to work with! And crazy talented!!

Menu – Jake Drachenberg

Cake – Our friend Krissie styled and cooked the dessert table. My Mum, Lisa made a chocolate roulade which we cut together. It was a recipe she learnt to make with her Mum (Nanna) so it has very special memories.

Bombonieres -  Chutney jars made by family

Hair – Ashley Pacey, Eric Moran Hair

Make up – Carmen Atkinson

Wedding Bands – Antony Colin the Jeweller  

Montsalvat- Karen Willis Holmes Campaign Shoot

Posted on 15 Feb, 2017
Montsalvat- Karen Willis Holmes Campaign Shoot

The end of 2016 finished on a high for the Karen Willis Holmes team, shooting the exciting new campaign at Montsalvat, Australias oldest artists colony in Eltham, Victoria.  The shoot features new Karen Willis Holmes gowns from the BESPOKE and DYG collections, as well as revisiting our favourite gowns from the current collection.  

We decided to shoot at Monsalvat because it exudes an old world romance synonymous with the Karen Willis Holmes brand through the contrast of whimsical internal and external spaces, soft tones and sweeping hills.  The classic example of French provincial gothic style architecture features extravagant exhibition halls with cathedral height ceilings, striking stained glass windows that lead to small corridors, spilling onto the richly established gardens.  The winding stairs inside twist around to tiny balconies, offering a breathtaking view of the grounds & the numerous historical mud brick buildings that surround.  Peacocks and ducks roam wild, adding drama to the whimsical space & creating a perfect backdrop for the 2017 Karen Willis Holmes campaign.

It is simply a photographer's dream to shoot at Montsalvat with Bek Smith working her magic behind the lens & Bunched together providing the stunning botanicals & foliage that perfectly complimented the gowns we were shooting. Videographer Lauren Schulz interpreted the shoot from another perspective, showing off all the gowns in movement.  Sultry eyes and deep plum lips finished off the looks by talented make-up artist Sophie Knox.
Lace featured, with long sleeve corded lace overlays & nude slips, glamorous ball gowns with sweeping trains & structured fitted gowns creating a modern romance throughout the grounds.  We are so excited to share with you this beautiful shoot put together by an incredibly talented team.    


Abbey Bodice & the Selena Train


Gerry Bodice & the Melanie Skirt


Gerry & Merida


Milani Corded Lace Overlay


Lauren


Ophelia & the Joni skirt


Eddie


Ophelia


Blake bodice & Prea skirt


Rosemary


Shelly bodice & the Melanie skirt


Shelly bodice & the Samantha skirt


Sophie


Ophelia bodice & the Joni skirt

CREDITS

Gowns- Karen Willis Holmes

Photographer- Bek Smith

Florist- Bunched together

Hair & Makeup- Sophie Knox

Videographer- Lauren Schulz

Model- Brooke Meredith

Location- Montsalvat, Eltham

 

KAREN WILLIS HOLMES - MONSTSALAVAT CAMPAIGN from lauren on Vimeo.

 

Chloe + Dan's stunning Newcastle wedding

Posted on 14 Feb, 2017
Chloe + Dan's stunning Newcastle wedding

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met in Year 9 on my first day at a new school, but we didn’t start dating until two and a half years after we finished Year 12.

How long have you been together? We started dating July 2011, and Dan proposed March 2016 – so we had nearly been together five years.

Do you have a proposal story? Dan proposed at the Hunter Valley Gardens up in the Hunter Valley’s wine country. I had a sneaking suspicion that he was going to propose as he had said three weeks earlier that we would set aside that day to do something together (we had been very busy the previous nine months – moving back to Newcastle from Brisbane, buying a house, renovating) and we never plan in advance and set aside days to do things. So I spent the next three weeks a nervous wreck, thinking that the day had finally arrived! But then, when we woke up Saturday morning, Dan asked what I wanted to do. I was so cranky at him, he had been telling me he had it all planned and here he was, asking me what I wanted to do! We decided to head up to the vineyards, as we both love it up there, and I was thinking there was no way he was proposing. But as we were walking around the Hunter Valley Gardens, he got down on one knee, extremely nervous and asked me to be his wife.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 12 November 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? The Newcastle Club

What made you choose there? Dan wanted to get married locally instead of the vineyards, and The Newcastle Club is a beautiful venue made up of old heritage-listed buildings and is rather grand. I love anything old world, and as someone who continually re-watches Downton Abbey, it suited perfectly.

How did you find it? My Mum is a member of the Club and had always pictured me getting married there, so it didn’t take much consideration. We were engaged on the Saturday and had the Club booked lunchtime on the Monday!

How was the weather on the day? Pouring in the morning and then very hot, but I was just so glad it stopped raining, it turned out beautifully.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? Peonies! I had to have peonies in my bouquet, and also both sets of my grandparents were married in November.

The Wedding Details

Theme? White, blush and lots of foliage. I wanted a garden feel, something almost like a fairytale. I didn’t hire a stylist as I had a pretty clear idea of what I wanted, I hired some of the décor from a few different places, I borrowed the beautiful lace bunting and lawn games from another friend, and our florist, Lorey, did the most amazing job. I wanted the main feature to be our florals and I was in complete awe when I walked into the reception, I kept looking over to Mum with an amazed expression on my face.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest and Instagram mostly

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Grace (maid of honour/best friend), Emily (cousin), Nicky (best friend)

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Jarrod (best man/best friend), Luke (Dan’s brother), Blake (my brother)

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Our flower girls were two of our nieces – Elke and Minka, our page boy was our godson Kohen and our page man was my youngest brother Ben.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I first started looking at Karen Willis Holmes when I was helping my best friend Grace find her wedding dress, and I instantly fell in love with the gowns. I actually came in to try the Mabel bodice, I thought I was going to like that with a tulle skirt but when I put on the Mabel bodice and skirt I smiled and when I walked out, everyone started crying – it was the one!

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Online and in wedding magazines

How many gowns did you try? At Karen Willis Holmes, probably five – but my gown was the first one I tried on.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington, Sydney.

What did you especially like about your gown? The sleeves and the back on the bodice, and that it was so simple but so beautiful.

 

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Shona Joy

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? TM Lewin

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? My step-dad Andrew bought me beautiful pearl studs from Rutherford and I borrowed my Mum’s pearl ring. I also had a small bag from TDE which I had my new initials engraved on – Dan loved it. I bought Grace a Pandora bracelet (she doesn’t have her ears pierced, it was such a mission finding something!) and I bought Nicky and Emily earrings from Swarovski.

Where did you get your shoes from? Shoes of Prey

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? My veil was from Karen Willis Holmes and my silver laurel leaf comb was from Anna Marguerite, a NZ designer.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Surround yourself with people you can trust and rely on, they make planning and the day so much better and sweeter.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? I honestly believe that you’ll know. But have a few different styles in mind – even though my gown from KWH was one of the reasons I went there, I was also toying with the idea of a long-sleeve lace gown (which is what my husband thought I would have chosen) but when I tried some on at a different boutique, I and my helpers quickly realised that look definitely wasn’t me.

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

Our ring cushion was my copy of Pride & Prejudice, my favourite book, which was originally Mum’s copy. Also, the music for the processional was composed and performed by Uncle Eric, it was very special to walk in to something that was written just for me. 

Something Old? My grandma’s handkerchief.

Something New? My dress

Something Borrowed? My mum’s pearl ring

Something Blue? The blue bow on my garter

Suppliers

Photographer – Nick Sim Photography. Where to begin! The first night we met Nick and his wife, Kel, they ended up staying for hours while Nick and Dan played FIFA. Nick and Kel made us feel so relaxed and like we had been friends for years. We couldn’t be happier with our photos, Nick did a stunning job.

Florist – Flowers By Lorey. Lorey was absolutely amazing, I was in awe of what she accomplished. She took my vision of what it would all look and made it so much better. I found Lorey through where I go to barre, Fleur Wellbeing, as they would sometimes have her posies for sale.

Music – Tre Soul

First Dance – A Thousand Year by Christina Perri

MC – Our friend Dave

Celebrant – Jennifer Wendtman – who is a very close family friend, it was so beyond wonderful having someone marry us who knows us so well.

Stationery – KR Creative

Wedding Bands  – Leonards

Sinead + Daniel's pretty Queensland Wedding

Posted on 07 Feb, 2017
Sinead + Daniel's pretty Queensland Wedding

Simple and fun was the brief for Sinead and Daniels wedding.  Fairy lights, foliage and candles filled the space, creating an intimate, romantic and whimsical wedding for the pair that that met through Daniels brother 7 years earlier.  After re-kindling their romance after some time apart, the couple were inseparable.  A gorgeous beach proposal followed, complete with cheese and champagne as they snuck away for a weekend in Kingcliff, near Tweed Heads.  

The couple wed during a romantic ceremony and reception at Osteria, Casuarina NSW.  Sinead opted for a simple yet classic gown by Karen Willis Holmes- the 'Kitty/Karly' combination, finished off with a sheer tulle skirt.  Brendan and Alice from Figtree Pictures shot both the special day as well as their engagement shoot which meant come the wedding, they had such a fun time with photographers they felt so comfortable with.  Three incredible floral installations were hung by master florists Elyssium Blooms, as you can see, it tied in the whimsy of their wedding perfectly.  

Background

How did you meet your partner?  I used to work with Daniel's brother who introduced us and we went on a few dates before our life direction's changed and we split and went our separate ways for a couple of years, only to get in touch again in late 2010. We used to MSN chat to one another whilst we lived in different states, upon return to the Gold Coast in 2011 Daniel left to go overseas on a holiday, I organized with his brother to pick him up from the airport and we have been inseparable ever since.

How long have you been together? 7 years

Do you have a proposal story? I had booked us a weekend away in Kingscliff as a cheeky little getaway in August 2014, I had been bugging Daniel for quite some time as to whether he was ever going to propose only to get “it will happen when you least expect it” as a response. I had given up all hope and just let it slide and waited quietly in anticipation. Whilst we waited to check into our hotel, we headed into Woolworths and purchased some bits and pieces for cheese and crackers that we would take down and nibble on at the beach (which I must say is one of my all-time favourite things to do!). As we headed down to the sand Daniel said “I will just run back to the car and grab us a couple of towels to sit on the sand”. We headed down the beach to a nice quiet spot where Daniel rolled out the towels and there tucked away was a purple box with my gorgeous engagement ring tucked inside. He knelt down and asked the question I had been waiting to hear for years. I immediately answered “Yes”. We sat on the beach taking in the moment and Daniel told me that he had called my Dad to ask him for his permission. My Dad is a FIFO so catching him at a good time is always a tad challenging, Daniel called him late one night after a gym session and apparently my Dad looked at the caller ID and thought why is Daniel calling me this late thinking it was one of his colleagues. When Daniel nervously started talking, Dad had no clue what was going on.  Once he finally twigged who it was poor Daniel was so nervous he could barely get the question out. I really admire that he asked my Dad for permission to marry his daughter as it was something I never asked him to do.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 26th August 2016

Ceremony and Reception Location? Osteria, Casuarina NSW

What made you choose there? I saw a picture online and as soon as I saw it I thought this is where we are going to get married, the pictures made it look intimate and inviting. I met the wedding coordinator at a wedding expo and placed a holding deposit on the venue before setting foot on site. It definitely was love at first sight. When we finally got to the venue, I knew it was the right decision.  We both were ecstatic with our choice and would visit regularly to build the anticipation.

How did you find it? Instagram

How was the weather on the day? Perfect! The day was perfect weather, sunny and not a cloud in the sky. Being August, the weather wasn’t too hot or too cold. Later in the evening it began to get colder and around 10:00 that night it began to rain.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? Daniel proposed to me on the 30th August 2014 so we tried to get as close to our engagement date possible. The 26th August fell perfectly into plan.

The Wedding Details

Theme? Our vision was to have a very simple and fun wedding. A very whimsical and romantic feeling was what we achieved, we had fairy lights, flowers, foliage and candles galore. We had a lot of white with a touch of gold and rustic pieces.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Mostly from my own personal style, clean and white with touches of antiques. A lot of my DIY ideas came from Pinterest and Instagram.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? Most of our wedding was DIY, I am a very artsy/crafty person. My Uncle made our blackboards that we used as our welcome & menu boards. I made all our frames with “Please take one” “Photo Booth Snaps” etc, we collected jars for months and months so we had jars with colouring pencils, candles and flowers throughout. We set up the whole venue the night before so there was nothing left to do the day of the wedding which took a huge load off.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Jordann, my sister & Mercedes, my Best Friend.

Groomsmen – who/relationship? Kyle, Daniel’s Brother & Dale, Daniel’s best friend.

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship?

Flower girls: Gabrielle & Sienna (Cousins), Phoebe and Allegra (Friends children).

Page Boys: Sebastian, Elijah & Jacob (Cousins)

Ring Bearer: Hunter (Godson)

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Sinead looked stunning in our 'Kitty/Karly' combination gown from the D.Y.G collection {made in Satin and worn with our 'Maggie' tulle skirt overlay from the Wild Hearts collection.} 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Again my impulse decision making, I had seen your gorgeous dresses online and fell in love. I love Karen Willis Holmes's simple, classic styles.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I am a fan on Instagram (the perks of social media) as well as seeing ads in magazines such as White & Hello May

How many gowns did you try? 3, it was the second gown that I chose that stole my heart! This was the first store I had been in and I chose straight away. My bridesmaid Mercedes lives in Dubai so we scheduled it in for her one day home to go wedding dress shopping so it worked out perfectly!

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes, Paddington, QLD

What did you especially like about your gown? The simplicity, I never envisioned myself wearing anything like the dress I chose but once I put it on it just felt right. I felt instantly teary and when I looked at my mum, sister and friend.  We all just knew it was the one!

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? I told both the girls that they could choose whatever dress they wanted as long as it was white, surprisingly without any coaxing they picked dresses that complemented the other. It was hard with Mercedes living on the other side of the world to go dress shopping so it was simply a few facebook messages and snap chats and their dresses were sorted.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? All the boy's attire came from Tarocash in Robina,QLD. Daniel usually struggles with decisions and to my surprise, he chose the 2nd outfit he tried on. Not really being a suit man (he would have preferred shorts and a t-shirt!) it was important that his look was relaxed and comfortable. They wore converse shoes and had superhero socks, perfectly suiting his style.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore a Karen Willis Holmes belt, I found a bracelet on Etsy that I loved which had a very similar embellishment to my belt and tied up with tulle. My earrings were Samantha Wills. The bridesmaids wore their own earrings and like their dresses chose their own shoes, I bought them Frankly My Dear 'Tie the knot' bracelets. The boys had superhero cufflinks which I found on Etsy.

Where did you get your shoes from? My shoes came from Novo, all I wanted was flat gold sparkly shoes and they had them their store, being tall already and 14 weeks pregnant at the time I wanted comfy shoes, and that was exactly what I got!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? No headpiece just flowers from our florist which my hairdresser popped in out hair.

Other

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Enjoy every minute of the planning and organizing, you go to so much effort and your big day will be over and done with in the blink of an eye.  Spend time with your partner to see what is important to them too, as it is as much their big day as it is yours. There is nothing I would change about our day it was the most amazing day of our lives, I just wish we could do it all again and slow it down next time.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Try on that dress you would never have contemplated wearing, it may just be “the one”!

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. We let our guests know during our ceremony that we were pregnant and expecting our first addition in Feb 2017. It was a great surprise, our parents and siblings already knew so it was nice to see everyone’s faces and their reactions at this time. I was very thankful that I was still small enough at this point that I could still fit in my wedding gown. Phew!

Something Old? A set of my great, great grandmothers earrings. I pinned one of them to my bouquet.

Something New? My wedding dress!

Something Borrowed? An earring from my mother in law that she wore on her wedding day that I pinned to my bouquet.

Something Blue? A brooch that belonged to my great, great, great grandmother that I also pinned to my bouquet. Everything really special close at hand.

​​

Suppliers

Photographer – Figtree Pictures Brenden & Alice. Two of the most chilled and fun photographers you will meet. They just went along with what we wanted to do and pointed and clicked away. I wanted to have a picnic during our photoshoot so we did and Brenden just started pointing the camera. We chose Figtree Pictures for our Engagement shoot as well and Brenden was right on board when I suggested doing a holi powder shoot, where Daniel and I threw coloured powder to get these great colourful shots which turned out amazing!

Florist – Elyssium Blooms Elise did the most amazing job, I had been following her work for quite some time as she is a family friends relative. All I told her in our brief was that I wanted white flowers and succulents and that is exactly what she delivered, it was better than what I could have ever envisioned. We really wanted a focal point in our reception so 3 large hanging foliage installations were hung which just made our wedding complete. The flowers in a wedding are really one of the main products that just make or break a wedding. We can’t thank Steve & Elise enough for their awesome work!

Music – Quinn McHugh which I found through Live Music Agency, I emailed Live Music Agency and told Kirsty what we liked and she found us Quinn. We listened to his demo’s and went and watched him play and again we booked him straight away. He had the most amazing voice and he stayed with us right from the ceremony, through until the end of the night.

First Dance – “Young & Beautiful” – Lana Del Ray (Which Quinn learned and played an acoustic version for us. Such a special moment.)

MC – My little brother Brady. He was so nervous, but his with his witty charm and humour he pulled off such a great night.

Celebrant – Kathryn Murphy. I met Kath at the Byron Bay Wedding Expo and from the second she opened her mouth, I just felt comfortable with her. She is such a kind hearted and beautiful person, we both felt so comfortable with her and she was happy to answer any of our questions and help out any time. She encouraged us to write our own vows which made our ceremony feel very special. We will definitely be going back to Kath if we renew our vows.

Stationery – I created ALL our stationery from our save the dates, invitations and thank you cards - everything I designed myself and once complete I sent to a friend who kindly printed all our pieces at his Printing Company.

Menu – I painstakingly hand wrote our menu on one of the blackboards my Uncle made.

Cake – The Cake that Ate Paris. Bree Meldrum. Bree did a wonderful job with our cake, we have four different flavours; Banana, Caramel, Peanut Butter & Choc Mint Mud Cake. It was the tastiest cake you will ever eat! We had a partially naked cake which Bree painted gold flecks on.  Elise from Elyssium Blooms decorated it with fresh white flowers and succulents.

Bombonieres – We had each guests names laser cut out which were for them to take home.

Hair – Amelia Anne Hair Styling. Amelia is an old friend of mine who does wedding hair styling came and styled our hair for the big day. I gave her a photo and said I wanted something similar with flowers around the back, she did a great job.

Make-Up – Rachael Simms. A well-known make-up artist on the Gold Coast, she always makes her brides look so natural. She is the cutest person you will ever meet, so down to earth and amazing at what she does. I have seen her for other beauty treatments and she is just wonderful.

Wedding Bands – Michael Hill for my set & Wallace Bishop for Daniel’s ring. (he wanted a tungsten ring and we spent a good year trying on bands for him)

Photobooth – Photobooth Collective. The photobooth was a real highlight of our night.  It was sooo much fun and it is hilarious to look back on and see all the goofy shots of all our guests.

Lighting – Elysium Lighting. The fairy lights and hanging light installations were installed by our wonderful Florists husband. The lights really set off the romantic feel to our reception.

 

Matt + Christine's stunning Noosa wedding

Posted on 07 Feb, 2017
Matt + Christine's stunning Noosa wedding

Christine & Matt wed in spectaular Noosa in October 2016.  The Melbourne couple got engaged with their gorgeous son in tow one afternoon at Stables of Como. Christine, who thought she would know when Matt was about to propose was completely shocked when he knelt down on one knee and asked for her hand in marriage.  Christine & Matt have known each other for nearly 7 years and had holidayed in Noosa for years.  Their connection with the balmy coastal town lead them having a destination wedding on the beach at Maison La Plage Grove, followed by a stunning sit-down dinner at Sails Restaurant Noosa. We love the intimate moments and laughter that was shot by Lucas & Co Photography who are known for their carefree, natural, candid style of photography.  Christine looked stunning wearing the 'Abbey' bodice with the 'Prea' skirt- a modern silhouette which exudes a classic romance through the corded lace delicately laid over the beautifully structured bodice.  White coastal blooms by Mondo Floral Designs perfectly finished off this elegant wedding. 

Background

How did you meet your partner? We met in London through mutual friends but did not officially become an item until a year later.

How long have you been together? For 6.5 years

Do you have a proposal story? The day Matt proposed caught me very off guard! I was booked in with my best friend for a day spa. Matt had secretly arranged for my friend to drive me to the beautiful Stables of Como in South Yarra straight after our morning appointment. Matt was there with our son and had a catered picnic and my favourite bottle of champagne waiting. He told me that he wanted to surprise me with a picnic, as he knew how busy he had been lately that wanted to do something nice for me. I thought that makes sense now (so any idea of a proposal was pushed right out of my head). It was half an hour later that I made a comment about how beautiful our family was, that he then got down on one knee in the middle of the gardens and said that he would like to make our family official and proceeded to ask me if I would marry him. I always thought I would know when he was about to do it or notice him acting strange but I had no idea! Everything about this day was perfect including the warm weather.  Also, I still can’t believe that he picked my beautiful engagement ring on his own.

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 12th October 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Ceremony: Maison La Plage Grove, Noosa

Reception: Sails Restaurant Noosa

Where? Noosa

 

What made you choose there? We absolutely love Noosa as a regular holiday destination and sums us up perfectly- so was an easy choice to make. We wanted good food and good wine right on the beach.

How did you find it? From previous holidays in Noosa

How was the weather on the day? Was warm and windy by the afternoon, it was also overcast but at least it was not raining or too hot for our guests.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? It was the only date left available for all of September and October so we decided midweek would be fine as it is a destination wedding.

The Wedding Details

Theme? We wanted a simple and elegant theme. The venue was on the beach and was already stunning so did not want to take away from that. We had all white flowers with greenery (white coastal blooms) with tea-light and pillar candles on the tables. We also had festoon lights out on the beach.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest, Instagram, The Lane

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y?  No, as it was a destination wedding it was quite hard to make any decorations and carry it up with us.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship?

Emily Fletcher- Best Friend (No relation to Matts side of the family)

Kristy Oborne- Best Friend

Belinda Alfonso- Best Friend

Groomsmen – who/relationship?

David Jackson- Best Friend

Tim Vesey- Best Friend

Rob Fletcher - Brother

Pageboy – who/relationship? Nate Fletcher - Son

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Christine looked stunning in our 'Abbey' bodice and 'Prea' skirt combination gown from the D.Y.G collection. 

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? My friend Emily booked me some appointments to look at dresses when I was in Brisbane and the first store we went to was Karen Willis Holmes. The last dress I tried on in that appointment was the one I ended up buying for my wedding day. I tried some more dresses on once I came back to Melbourne, but found myself comparing all the dresses to the first one I tried on with KWH.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I never really took notice of wedding dresses until I needed one, now I notice Karen Willis Holmes all the time.

How many gowns did you try? 6-7

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes in Armadale, Melbourne.

What did you especially like about your gown? The quality! I tried on a few dresses before I made this purchase and felt like the other dresses had high price tags just because they were wedding dresses but I could not see or feel the quality. I love how beautiful and delicate looking the Abbey bodice was and thought it would photograph so nicely. The Prea skirt material was also gorgeous and I could feel the quality.

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? Rodeo Show

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Custom made by Jeff Gibson in Geelong

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? All accessories were by Samantha Wills.

Where did you get your shoes from? Jimmy Choo

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Veil by Karen Willis Holmes

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Try to enjoy the process as much as possible. Use good suppliers to help ensure your day runs smooth and as stress-free as possible.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Be open to trying on different styles as it may catch you by surprise what you like and what looks good on.

Suppliers

Photographer – Lucas & Co Photography

Florist – Mondo Floral Designs

Videographer – Joel Tronoff

Music - James Johnston Duo

First Dance –‘Stay with me’ by Sam Smith

MC – Close friends Chris and Genevieve Jones

Preist – Bren O’Donohue (Matt’s Great Uncle)

Stationery – Friend Luke Fletcher for wedding invites

Menu – Sails Restaurant

Hair – Hair by Nicola

Make-Up – Tasleema Nigh

Ceremony and Reception Stylist –  Lovebird Weddings

 

matt & christine from Joel Tronoff on Vimeo.

 

Saturday the 25th February - Oh Flora

Posted on 06 Feb, 2017
Saturday the 25th February - Oh Flora

Oh Flora's creations are just simply stunning. Old worldly, romantic, sophisticated & bursting with style.  Tanya is a Stylist and Florist based in Sydney and we have been in love with her work for years. Most recently, she was the floral mastermind and stylist behind one of our shoots- she created a large floral installation 'growing' from the floor and the walls, creating a botanical wonderland in shades of pastel pinks, apricots, ever so pale blushes & stronger crimsons, perfectly balanced with the subtle heaviness of greenery in the foliage.  

She is inspired by travel, nature, roadtrips, flower trips, markets and of course by creating unforgettable experiences for her clients. On top of this, she also runs workshops covering everything from bouquets, foraging, centerpiece making and private workshops. 

On Saturday February 25th, Tanya will be in our flagship showroom in Alexandria, Sydney to chat to you about all of your wedding floral ideas. Make an appointment to try on our gowns here and make sure to not miss out on this incredible opportunity.  

Your Name: Tanya Shaw

Location: Leichhardt - Sydney

Business name: Oh Flora Studio

Let's start at the beginning. How did your business come about? Oh Flora Studio was born when I decided to move to Sydney, then started to look into becoming a florist and just became obsessed with flowers.  I had wanted to work creating events since I was a child.  I'm honestly not sure where it all came from (the film "The Wedding Planner" probably had something to do with it).  I just love making things beautiful and creating spaces people can enjoy and take in.  I started off working a couple of months here and there in a few florist shops but had the urge since the beginning to jump in the deep end on my own.  So, I went over to the States last year on the most inspiring flower filled trip of my life and when I returned home I made the leap of working solely for myself.  I love to work closely with my clients to refine their inspiration and create a day that's truly unforgettable for them and their guests.

What inspires you? Nature & Travels!!  The combo of going on a road trip and pulling over in the middle of nowhere to stare at a stunning dogwood tree or visiting a flower farmer - absolutely the best in my books!

How do you start your day? On market days, I'd love to say I get up readily and excited for the flower market, but honestly, the first 20 mins are HARD!  After that the excitement kicks in when picking up all my lovely fresh floral orders and picking out any extra bunches I can't help but take back to the studio.  Then it's coffee time whilst making the studio look pretty (just for myself), followed by arranging orders and replying to emails! 

What is your favorite thing about your job? The change of seasons, especially when we go into Spring & how I learn something new every single day.  This would also tie with the excitement and emotion on a brides face when she sees their flowers the morning of her wedding. 

What is your advice to couples planning a wedding? Trust your vendors and list your top priorities for your budget.  Invest in the things they are truly important to you.  Pick vendors that are already aligned with your style, you will get better value for money and a professional who understands what you're wanting. They of course, should listen to your priorities and work closely with you, but trust and consider their opinions and options they offer. 

Favorite city? Can I please pick two!?  New York & San Cristobal. New York, because it's just amazing isn't it? And there are so many neighbourhoods to explore.  San Cristobal, Mexico- the most interesting mix of Spanish and Mexican influence inspired city in Chiapas, Mexico, made up of gorgeous cobble stoned streets, stunning churches, amazing food and beautiful people. 

Best way to spend $50? A relaxing beach picnic with a bottle of wine!

Anything else you would like to share with brides-to-be about your work. My work is very much influenced by nature and an old world, historic style of floristry (think Dutch Masters paintings).  I love to use a huge variety of flowers and foliages when arranging and generally only a few stems of each, sometimes my bouquets can have up to 18 different types of botanics in them.  I have very recently started a small cutting garden in a borrowed yard to grow more organic looking stems and hard to find varieties.  I hope to add these flowers to my arrangements next year to make them a little more special!

FLOWERS, EVENT PLANNING & DESIGN

http://www.ohflora.com.au

Tanya Shaw
hello@ohflora.com.au
0402 520 429

Anna & Nick's Western Australia Wedding

Posted on 02 Feb, 2017
Anna & Nick's Western Australia Wedding

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband? I came over from Germany to study a semester at the University of WA. Nick and I met at a Halloween Party, which was at one of Nick’s friends house in 2008. My then flat mate took me along to the party. I noticed Nick straight away and he started talking to me and offered me a drink. Love at first sight and we have been together since then! I decided to stay and live with Nick in Perth.

How long have you been together? 7.5 years

Do you have a proposal story? Nick took his time, but probably had it all planned and thought through over the years. When we met at the Halloween Party, I was wearing a plastic black bat ring as part of my (not quite existing) costume. Nick took it off me that night and I never got it back. I got it back almost seven years later when he proposed to me at a lighthouse in Peniche, Portugal. I was still very surprised, even though Nick behaved very awkwardly that night. I always thought, that he would propose on a surfboard in Gracetown (family holiday house). We had planned to go on holidays to Portugal since years and it was a destination that was on top of our travel list. Our 4 year old Portuguese Waterdog Betty is the centre of our lives and we love her as much as we love each other, so that was maybe another factor why Nick chose Portugal and made me wait a little bit longer. Looking back, now I think the timing is great and I didn’t want it any other way. After the proposal in Portugal we spent a week together with my family in Germany and Nick got me a custom made engagement ring in my hometown Bremen!

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? Saturday 12th of March 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Incognito Escape, Cowaramup (South West Australia)

What made you choose there? Nick and I are spending a lot of time together, with our family, and friends in Gracetown (near Margaret River) in Nick’s family’s holiday house. It is the place where we are always happy together. I researched wedding venues as close as possible to Gracetown so that we can have a wedding weekend and have our guests book accommodation in Gracetown. The venue is not quite known for weddings, but they have had a few. So it is a bit of a secret location, which we loved and none of our family and friends have been there before.

It has amazing ocean views, one of the main reasons why we decided on it straight away. I also loved that it was in the middle of the bush, with no one around. We had our guests arriving on a bus from Gracetown and Nick and I enjoyed the house for two more nights for ourselves, which was amazing.

How did you find it? Searching in the Internet: through a photographer blog  (the bride wore also Karen Willis Holmes).

How was the weather on the day? Almost perfect! The day started off being really windy and my friend who is a florist and did the flowers for me, had real trouble putting up the flowers on the archway. The wind died off in the afternoon, but it was still quite windy.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We just decided on March due to the weather and picked a weekend that is not in the school holidays or a long weekend.

The Wedding Details

Theme?

Rustic, simple, casual, ocean

Colours: Gold, neutrals and white. Flowers had a bit of blush pink as well.

I chose blue silk cushion covers (zahir.net.au) for the occasional outdoor seating to reflect the color of the ocean.

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pintrest, Instagram, the web. But I was trying to stay as much as possible away from all that wedding and bridal hype and deliberately didn’t buy any magazines or went to bridal fairs. I wanted a casual, relaxed and down to earth wedding. I wanted inspiration without getting too carried away.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?

  • I made the paper for the wedding invitations myself; it had gold glitter and metallic threads in it. I used the paper as much as I could throughout the wedding decorations. I made a heart garland, used it for the bomboniere gift tags, hand stamped cards and signs.
  • I made cards that were holding jewelry as thank you for my Mum, flower girl and best friends.   
  • I sewed 30m of gold bunting together to go outside with the festoon lights.
  • I made Portugese Pumpkin Jam as bomboniere. I wanted to do something with our engagement in Portugal in my mind. I cooked 4 batches of Jam, my friend and my Mother-in-law helped. I ordered a custom stamp ‘spread the love’ with our wedding date for the gift tags (made out of my paper).
  • Nick mad all the wooden signs for around the venue
  • Our ‘wedding band’ at the ceremony were Nicks mates, they usually don’t play together and formed a band for our wedding
  • I up-cycled and painted the chairs for the signing table
  • Our family and close friends and us set up everything ourselves the day before the wedding

Bridal Party

We decided to keep everything minimalistic and within the family for our wedding. We didn’t want any bridesmaids and groomsmen. Our flower girl Isabel is Nick’s niece, as she is only 2 years old she was accompanied by Anna Nick’s half sister (12 years old). My brother Matthias and Nick’s sister Emily did a reading during the ceremony. Nick’s Dad Wayne handed the rings over and our Mums Sue and Brigitta were our witnesses and signed the marriage certificate.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? Before I even started looking for wedding gowns, I drove pass the Karen Willis Holmes shop in Subiaco, I never noticed it before so I looked it up. I looked up all the gowns on the website and read about Karen and then already really decided that I wanted a Karen Willis Holmes wedding dress. I wanted an Australian designer and I just liked everything about Karen Willis Holmes! All dresses are stunning!

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I browsed through all collections online and then went straight into the Perth boutique.

How many gowns did you try? 5 I think? I really wanted to try more….but I already had trouble deciding between two dresses. It was such a hard decision and I needed 3 appointments (sorry Perth team! But big thank you for all your time and help!)

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Karen Willis Holmes Subiaco, Perth.

What did you especially like about your gown? That it is made of silk. I liked that I could customize it by lowering the back of the slip. I loved the lace! So beautiful! The fact that it is a wrap dress, which I though is different for a wedding dress. The dress is very versatile, it looks so different on every bride and with the different slips and belts it can get a whole different look. I chose lace over sequin in the end, because I think it is timeless. I hope that I will look at our wedding pictures in 40 years time and still love the dress! I also thought that it would suit our wedding venue and style of the wedding.

Fashion

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Nick got his Pal Zileri suit from Parker & Co in Perth.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I had a bracelet to match my headpiece; Jenny Packham (Stellina) Crystal stud earrings from Samantha Wills. I gave a pair of Samantha Wills crystal stud earrings to my Mum on the day. My best friends got a silver infinity bracelet from Jolie & Deen and my flower girl a necklace with a flower pendant from Jolie & Deen.

Where did you get your shoes from? I bought 4 pairs! I ended up wearing gold Jimmy Choo stilettos and when the dancing started I switched to very comfy block heels from ‘forever soles’. I saw these block heels on the KWH blog just after I ordered the dress and bought them straight away!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? I wore a headpiece from Jenny Packham (Stellina III), purchased from the UK Jenny Packham online shop with the matching bracelet.

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? We had the venue, caterer, photographer, MUA, furniture hire etc. confirmed and booked in early on. This was great and it really is the biggest job with lots of decisions to make. But just try to be that organized early on, so you can get the best people. The area where we had our wedding is very popular and so we had to book everything in, before people are booked out. Experienced providers within the industry are great and we had people that work together all the time, they rock up and everything was running. Ask the suppliers who they recommend; for example I got the cake from who the caterer recommended. Order things you decided on already even if its months before. Custom orders through etsy etc.take time. 

Looking back I think I should have generated a much more detailed running sheet for each person e.g. the caterer, the DJ etc. Make sure you mention everything to the suppliers even if you think its common sense!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Most important is that you want to be comfortable and find a dress that suits your style. Take somebody along that has a similar style/ taste, but also honest. Think about the venue where you have the ceremony and the weather conditions. Take your time, enjoy and have fun! Best thing ever to go and try wedding gowns on! J It is such a special time.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? I had this all planned/ family and friends offered, but then it ended up being all too hectic! I don’t know…..what happened to my something borrowed? The most important was my something old: an antique sliver cake knife and cake server from my grandma in Germany.

As I am from Germany; I wanted to give the wedding a little German touch:

My Mum brought German schnapps from a little distillery from my hometown in Bremen. Nick and I toasted with our guests before we started our speeches.

We had German music of course and my husband, father in law and MC tried their best to speak German during the speeches. J

Suppliers

Florist – Poppy’s Flowers Nedlands, Perth

Very experienced team and they are making the impossible possible. I have trusted Milly in her taste and just said that I wanted white and blush pink blooms mixed with natives. She supplied also most of the decorations; candles, crystal vases, lanterns, chalkboards etc. The archway was just beyond my expectation! I loved it. The archway itself was made by Milly’s husband and she decorated it on the day with the wedding flowers and the aloe vera I brought out of my garden.

Photographer – Zaneta Van Zyl

Found through the Margaret River wedding directory. We chose her because of her style and the quality of her photos.

Zaneta is a very talented girl. It was great that we had an engagement session with her and I love the photos. She did a fantastic job (!): getting everybody in for a group photo, finding photo locations, getting our dog involved into the photos etc.

Music – Our friends played music before and during the ceremony. We walked in to ‘Wonderwall, Oasis’ and out to ‘Home, Edward Sharpe  & The Magnetic Zeros’.

MC – Nick’s best friend Kris

Celebrant – Diane Moore, She got recommended to us by a couple of people when we were looking for venues. We were very glad that we were able to have her – she is fantastic.  I Had already tears in my eyes at our first meeting, 6 months before the wedding. She reminded us that the ceremony is actually the most important part and brought everything so well together. 

Stationery – I made the paper myself with Leslie Westerlund

Furniture - Empire Events Dunsborough

Menu – Cowaramup Food, I chose them because they were local and pretty much everybody was raving about them…..so were the guests at our wedding about the food. Our chosen menu:

 

 

Feta + truffle risotto balls, sugo

Lime salt prawns, aioli

Harissa spiced chicken kebabs

Smoked salmon + dill labne blini

Seared scallops, fennel puree, micro herbs

Semidried tomato + macadamia pesto tartlets, goats curd, tomato dust

Slow braised pork belly + papaya salad, chilli caramel (boat)

8 hour Texas rubbed braised beef brisket + salsa, taco chips, crème fraiche (box)

Moroccan lamb cutlets

Chicken, mushroom + pink peppercorn wonton cups (veg option)

Thai green chicken curry, coconut rice (box - veg option)

 

 

 

Cake – Bake the Cake Margaret River, Recommended by our caterer - Naked cake, the flavours were Spiced Almond Orange and Chocolate Mud Cake

Bombonieres – Portugese Pumpkin Jam that I made myself

Polaroid photo in custom card holder - My One Sweet Day

Make up – Beautiquelove Cowaramup, Fantastic service, especially loved my eyelashes- they lasted a long time

The Gelato Chart - Gelato Buonissimo, Busselton, beautiful Italian ice-cream as dessert served from the gelato chart.

Silk cushions - Zahir 

Dressing gown - Piyama

 

 

Laura & Peter's Autumn Country Wedding

Posted on 31 Jan, 2017
Laura & Peter's Autumn Country Wedding

Background

Do you have a proposal story? Peter planned a big beautiful proposal in front of the Rockefeller Christmas Tree on Christmas Night in New York City in 2014. On Christmas eve we split up to buy each other’s Christmas presents, Laura bought Peter a scarf from Macys and Peter stopped by Tiffany & Co on 5th Avenue to pick up the most beautiful engagement ring (Peter obviously won Christmas this year). Peter hired a secret photographer to capture the moment he got down on one knee. She then took us on a photo shoot around Manhattan afterwards!!! It was truly what dreams are made of, SO AMAZING!!

The Wedding

Location (Ceremony and Reception)

Where? Ceremony: Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Curtin ACT; Reception: Yarralumla Woolshed, Yarralumla, ACT

What made you choose there? We were always on the same page about finding a venue that had character but also it also needed to provide us with enough of a blank canvas so that we could be as creative as we liked with our vision. The Yarralumla Woolshed did this! With its laid-back country vibe and big wide open space, it was certainly a hard venue to pass up. I come from a long family history of sheep farming (specifically for merino wool) in NSW and it provided that personal connection. The minute we decided it was the one our vision began to come to fruition, and from there we started making contact with all of the suppliers we needed to make this vision become a reality.

We originally looked at many stunning venues across the region and as beautiful each of them were, we didn’t quite get the same feeling we did when we saw the Yarralumla Woolshed.

The Wedding Details

Theme? From the start we agreed that we would shy away from the traditional white wedding theme. We wanted to create an experience for our guests from the minute they opened their wedding invitation to the moment they walked through the doors of the Yarralumla Woolshed. We wanted texture, warmth and sophistication, but most importantly, we wanted ‘WOW’. I think the canopy made up of 2km of fairy lights strung across the entire ceiling helped create that reaction.

What was your favourite detail from the day? There are SO many details we loved about our wedding, but the fairy lights have to be our favourite. Everything from the warm yellow colour to the sheer number of strings hung from the ceiling, they truly created the most amazing ambiance in that space. Although it took a long 4 hours to hang them, it was so worth it. The Yarralumla Woolshed has such high ceilings so to be able to create an intimate space for our guests with lights was just amazing!

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? We sure did! 12 months out we asked family and friends to collect all of their used tins (any shape, any size) we ended up with 400 and with the help of Peter’s parents we spray-painted each and every one of them gold. The tins lined the middle of each of the tables and acted as our vases. They were filled with gum leaves, wattle leaves and big beautiful dahlias.

Our wedding favours, individually potted succulents in terracotta pots, were all completely home grown by family, friends and some from our own garden. They also held our place cards – this really added a personal touch.

The table numbers, welcome and lectern signs were created by us. We had the designs printed on A1 size paper and purchased plywood boards and stained them. We then carved the design into the boards and painted over the carving marks with white paint – they were a lot of work but we are so proud of how well they turned out!

The desserts on the dessert buffet were baked by our family and friends and the wedding cake was created by Laura’s very talented sister Rebecca.

And we can’t forget the AMAZINGLY PERFECT bouquets and buttonholes composed by Laura’s cousin Tori-Lee.

Having done so much DIY and involving our friends and family in the process as much as possible created another level of personal to our big day

I created a frame with strings attached from side to side with each guest’s name attached with a small timber peg. 2 polaroid cameras sat beside it and guests were to find their name and replace it with a polaroid photo of themselves.

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

Talk to us about your dress? Where was it from? How long did it take to find and how did you find the over all experience? The dress!! Oh how I love my dress. I was always worried that I would look like a little kid playing dress up on my wedding day (thanks to my lack of height) so it was important for me to find the dress that made me feel beautiful, mature and followed the theme of texture that was included in every aspect of our wedding. After months of scrolling through pinterest page after pinterest page and many wedding dress websites I found the one I knew had to be mine. The Karen Willis Holmes ‘Matilda’ Gown was everything I could have ever imaged my wedding dress to be…that bodice…the details…the texture…that layered skirt – oh my, it was just divine! I only went to one KWH boutique and tried on many many stunning gowns, but the ‘Matilda’ was the one that had my heart and I couldn’t have been happier with it! How lucky am I!!

Fashion

Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? ASOS

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Suit ASOS, Shirt MJ BaleBow tie David Jones, Shoes Windsor Smith, Socks Country Road, Watch Tissot, Groomsmen's Ties Aquila

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? Mimco glitter clutch bags, Mimco pearl earrings, Forever New 'Laura Gold' Kimono robes and nude ballet flats. 

Where did you get your shoes from? Wittner

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? No

Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? 

Take the time to sit down and talk to each other and map out your vision. Our goal was to create an experience for each and every one of our guests.

The devil is in the details and no matter how small or how significant it may seem pay attention to the small things, your efforts and care will be noticed.

But most importantly have fun, enjoy the entire process in the lead up to the day – before you know it your wedding will have come and gone and there will be no more reason to search for wedding pins on Pinterest, believe me you will miss it!

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

Walking down the aisle towards Peter after 10 years of being together and building a life with each other was the most emotional and happiest moment of our lives. I think we both knew from the start that this was forever so this moment was one that was always going to be special; it was everything we dreamed it would be.

My Nan and Pop won’t like that this story is mentioned, but it’s a must. Nan and Pop travelled up from Goulburn to attend our wedding and not being overly familiar with that side of town they managed to get a bit lost on the way to the church. I was advised on arrival that they were running late so had to remain in the car for a little bit longer, it turned out to be about 25 minutes longer. As you can imagine poor Peter down the front of the church, already nervous enough as it was and knowing that I was there added to the anticipation of her walking down the aisle. Little did we know that on the drive from Peter and Laura’s house after taking photos of the bride and the bridesmaids Anthea’s (one of the photographers) car had decided to blow up half way to the church!! Maid of honour Rebecca thankfully answered Anthea’s phone call and was able to have my Unlce jump in a car and get out to Anthea with enough time to get her back to the church JUST before the girls arrived. So instead of being late Anthea ended up being 25 minutes early due to delay from Laura’s Nan and Pop! It’s funny how things end up working out in the end!

Suppliers

I am an event manager, so finding and working with the vendors was nice and easy!

Most were small local businesses from around the Canberra area such as our invitation man Sam from Artforme Letterpress Studio – his care and attention to detail came through in our incredibly beautiful invitations and the feeling of supporting local was so great!

One of the most important and most beautiful wedding fairs we went to was the One Fine Day Wedding Fair held at the Nationally Gallery of Australia, here we found our photographers – the very talented and oh so lovely Anthea and Lyndon.

 

Event manager and Stylist -  Sweet Little Sunday

Florist - Tori-Lee Lang, Miss Flourish 

Photographer - Anthea and Lyndon We can't speak highly enough of the most talented photographers we have ever met, Anthea and Lyndon. From the initial meeting exactly a year before the wedding (where Laura, armed with 3 different copies of Hello May magazine asked ‘So guys can you PLEASE get us on the cover of or at least in this magazine?’) to the communication we had with them in the lead up, Anthea and Lyndon made such an amazing effort to get to know us and who we are as a couple. This showed through in the most beautiful wedding photos we have ever seen. We were blessed to have them capture our day and equally as blessed to have gotten to know them both.

Music - Chicago Charles

Celebrant - Fr. Tony Frey (Peter's Uncle)

Stationery - Artforme

Menu - Canapes by Peter, Mains by Capital Roast

Cake - Bride's Sister Rebecca (Mini trifles, Laura's Mother; lemon slice and peach kertun, Laura's friend; chocolate biscuit slice, Laura's Grandmother; brownies, Laura's sister; chocolate slice, Peter's Aunt)

Bombonieres - Homegrown succulents (grown by us and Family) potted in small terracotta pots

Hair - Danielle Connell (Bride's cousin)

Make up - Tiarni Staples

Wedding Bands - Bride - Tiffany & Co. Groom - Mazzucchellis

Furniture Hire - Your Event Solution and Boy and Girl Co

KWH by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES US Trunkshow

Posted on 30 Jan, 2017
KWH by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES US Trunkshow

We are so excited to share with you the new photoshoot for the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes Sequin Collection.  For those who have been hiding under a rock, these are our absolute faves from the collection and for those already familiar with the styles, we hope you adore these fresh new shots as much as we do! Some of our favourite stockists across the States are holding trunkshows from now until July showcasing the collection so for those brides lucky enough to live near a stockist, you truly are in for a treat! See below for more details about the trunkshows and how you can book an appointment to make sure you don't miss out.   

We teamed up with photographer Bek Smith at the beautiful XO Studios in Brunswick, Melbourne to shoot these little numbers in all their glory.  Brittany Cartel worked her wonder on hair while Ross Andrewartha, Director of Artistry for YSL delivered some stunning dewy and dreamy looks to the lovely Eileen Cassidy who turned on her magic and made our gowns shine.

Simplicity was key, shooting on a blank backdrop and against the beautiful industrial white washed windows.  Sequined sheaths with the finest of straps and the lowest of backs featured, plunging beaded necklines & intricately embroidered back detailing.  This collection stays true to its roots, with slim fitting elegant silhouettes, made to hug a woman's curves in the most flattering way. The essence of the KWH by Karen Willis Holmes collections always hold an air of art deco glamour, whilst still being modern yet understated.
 

Agyness

Featuring a high center-front neckline with cut-away low back, fitted bias skirt and all over embellishment with exquisite neckline detail. 

Antoinette

All-over embellished V-neck bodice with low center back and bias cut skirt. Exquisitely beaded around the neckline and finished with a belt.

Beatrice

V-neck bodice with A-line skirt, delicately beaded and embroidered and finished with a belt. 



Caitlyn

All over sequin fitted fishtail gown with v-neckline, cap sleeves & sheer tulle back with embroidery detail. Finished with a belt in the same design.  

Ellery

Sweetheart neckline, low center back bodice with spaghetti straps, and a bias skirt all delicately beaded and embroidered. 

Fontanne

V-neck bodice and bias skirt featuring exquisite beaded and embroidered detail, finished with a belt.

Lottie

Sweetheart neckline with spaghetti straps, a panelled beaded bodice and sequin bias skirt and finished with a belt. 

Nerada

All-over sequined halter-neck gown with low-center back and bias cut skirt. Exquisite beading detail at the neckline. 



Nerida, worn here with the diamond train.
 



Anya

Sweetheart neckline with spaghetti straps, beaded bodice and sequin bias skirt and finished with a belt. 



Anya, worn with the Genevieve skirt drape.

 

Anya, worn with the Maggie train.

Anya, worn with the Alice train.

Trunk Show Details

Click here to find your closest Trunk show & to book an appointment.  To view the full collection, click here

Shoot Credits

Gowns: Karen Willis Holmes
Photographer: Bek Smith
Make-up: Ross Andrewartha Director of Artistry for YSL Beauty 
Hair: Brittany Cartel
Model: Eileen Cassidy
Space: XO Studios

Allyce & Daniel's Boho Garden Wedding

Posted on 25 Jan, 2017
Allyce & Daniel's Boho Garden Wedding

AS FEATURED BY:

The order in which Allyce and Daniel swapped vows was decided the same way they make all their decisions – with a friendly game of paper scissors rock. This cool couple had already won us over with their boho garden party wedding at Merrimac’s Braeside Chapel but the fact that one of our fave photography duos shot the whole thing is just an added bonus – Trent and Jessie never disappoint!

While their wedding was a relaxed affair, there’s no doubt Daniel knows a bit about romance – his proposal after a horse and carriage ride around Melbourne says it all! “We stopped to take pictures at a fountain (at the Botanical Gardens) and Dan told me to close my eyes…” Allyce tells us. When she opened them he was down on one knee and he rest is history! “It was a bit of a blur but I remember jumping on him so excited before he could even say anything. I finally regathered myself, let him ask me and of course I said YES!”

The ceremony itself took place under one of the most incredible laurel trees we’ve seen and the pair left the styling up to Mother Nature, save for some draped fabric and a dream catcher, while Gold Coast Wedding and Event Hire did the rest. Canapés on the lawn were followed by a roast dinner (courtesy of Spits n Pieces) and a whole lotta dancing ensued – no surprise when you’ve got The Paper Flowers on board.

Erin Stuart Styles came up with the perfect ‘do for Allyce - an intricate braided crown with a wavy side ponytail, topped with a halo of native flowers.

A two-piece Karen Willis Holmes number was the ideal wedding gown for this boho bride and she paired it with a gypsy like collection of rings.

Braeside is an absolutely gorgeous venue,” says Allyce, “and you can see how much pride the owners John and Judy take in keeping their property in immaculate condition. Even better, it’s only 10 minutes from the Gold Coast. Having the ceremony and reception at the same place was so convenient and made the day flow really well.”

Allyce’s bridesmaids each wore an Esther white lace midi dress of their choosing, along with turquoise accessories from Lovisa for added boho brownie points. 

Bits and Buds crafted stunning white and green bouquets for the bridal party, with some red accents and a gorgeous protea for the bride.

This happy couple had nothing but kind words when it came to photography team, Trent and Jessie, “These two were so great throughout our day. The loveliest people and so talented and enjoyable to be around!” says Allyce.

Credits

Images Trent and Jessie | Bride's Dress Karen Willis Holmes | Bride's Shoes Novo | Bridesmaid's Dresses Esther Boutique | Groom's Suit YD | Rings Michael Hill | Hair Erin Stuart Styles | Makeup Erin Stuart Styles | Ceremony Venue Braeside Chapel | Celebrant Vogue Vows | Flowers Bits & Buds | Catering Spits n Pieces | Entertainment The Paper Flowers | Stationary/Invitations Payne Print | Transport Golden Gate Limousines | Styling/Prop Hire/ Reception Flowers Gold Coast Wedding Event Hire | Cake Cakes by Ashlee |

Briana and Zach's Charleston Wedding

Posted on 23 Jan, 2017
Briana and Zach's Charleston Wedding

Briana, our stunning American bride is one who knows style.  Her creative professional life was elegantly and seamlessly translated to her fall wedding with soul mate Zach where they exchanged vows in Charleston, Carolina.  The town of Charleston is known for its bursting Southern charm and hospitality. Briana knew she had a special connection to the location when her sister wed there 8 years earlier.  In her eyes, there was nowhere else she could see herself getting married when the time came.  They wed amongst friends and family down at the Cotton Dock at Boone Hall Plantation.  Of course, a plantation wedding calls for decadent Southern feast, complete with grits and a mac & cheese table.  Many special moments were shared that day, one of the most memorable was when the new couple danced to 'Piano Man' by Billy Joel.  Their guests crowded around them, watching on at the love story that would continue to unfold for years to come.

Background
How did you meet your (now) husband? At a bar! Romantic, right?

How long have you been together? Since June 2013 (almost 3 ½ years)
 
Do you have a proposal story? We were out of town at a beautiful resort (Loews Ventana Canyon) in Arizona.  Zach had a work trip in which I joined and we decided to extend the weekend. After a wonderful dinner we went outside and sat by a fire pit, where he got down on one knee. I was so excited and shocked that I forgot to say ‘yes!’ After he asked, “Is that a yes?” he put the beautiful rose gold, oval diamond solitaire on my finger. We were able to enjoy the rest of the weekend to celebrate, just the two of us, before heading back to Ohio to celebrate with family and friends.
 


The Wedding
What was your wedding date?September 9, 2016

Location (Ceremony and Reception)
Where? The Cotton Dock at Boone Hall Plantation in Charleston, South Carolina
 
What made you choose there? I wanted to have a destination wedding where guests could fly or drive and potentially make a mini vacation out of it. Charleston is an incredibly beautiful and historic city. One of my sisters was married in Charleston 8 years ago and after her wedding, I just knew it would be the place I would want to marry someday. My sister recommended I look at Boone Hall plantation. As soon as I saw photos online, I knew it was the place! Upon visiting the plantation, it really sealed the deal. The photos speak for themselves – it is just one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen.
 
How did you find it? My sister’s recommendation

How was the weather on the day? Absolutely perfect! We were nervous as it can be really hot in early September in Charleston. It’s also risky due to hurricane season. We were blessed with a beautiful, sunny day with a light breeze, followed by the most beautiful sunset!
 
What made you decide to get married on this particular date?
I knew I wanted to get married in the fall. The venue is very popular and books out very far in advance. When I enquired about the venue (10 months before the date) the only dates available were Sept 9 and Sept 11. It made the decision quite easy for us!

 



The Wedding Details
Theme? Romantic, Rustic, Simple & Elegant. Ivory and warm neutrals like taupe and blush. I wanted the flowers and décor to be a bit understated since the venue itself, is just absolutely stunning.  
 
Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? I have a background in concept design for apparel and I have always had a strong sense of style. I’ve always wanted a wedding with neutral tones that felt natural and timeless. Pinterest was my best friend! I was able to find all my inspiration from flowers to chairs to décor. A lot of my ideas were just in my head, but I was very pleased to find a trail of inspiration from other beautiful weddings
 
Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?
I found our program template, signs (guest book, bar menu, etc) and thank you notes which we had at each table setting, on Etsy. For the thank you notes, I purchased twine and wrapped the notes myself. Our florists placed a little greenery under the twine on each note. We also purchased several vases & candles to mix in with our florist’s. My favorite little votive holders were the copper ones we had placed outside on the cocktail tables.

 


Bridal Party
Bridesmaids - who/relationship? 2 matrons of honor were my sisters (Jaima Lawrence & Kailyn Longoria). The rest included Jessie Russo, Shawnie Susie, Kelly Morris, Emily Glinski, Kelly Doran and Kirby Schuchter. The last 2 are my now sisters-in-law. The others are beautiful friends. One girl I’ve known since we were 7 years old!
 
Groomsmen - who/relationship? Best man was Bill Odorizzi (Godfather of the groom). The rest include Zach’s friends ranging from childhood to adulthood including Chris Caravajal, Michael Wood, Nick Keene and Stan Ferger
 
Flower girls/Page boys - who/relationship? My niece (Henley Longoria) & nephews (Paxton & Ryder Longoria, Luxon & Revere Lawrence)


 
Wedding Gown (the most important part!)
What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I found my dress at a relatively new boutique (B. Loved) in Columbus, OH, where I live. I actually spotted the Caitlyn gown immediately. It is so beautiful and unique. I walked past it because it was one of the first dresses I saw, and I wanted to browse the entire boutique. Thankfully, the owner pulled it for me. It was the first dress I tried on! Shocked, I told my sisters that I thought it could be the one. I wanted to keep trying on because naturally, I thought maybe I just felt that way after trying on the first dress of my appointment. As we left the boutique, I asked my sister how I would know. She told me there would be one that stood out. Sure enough, a few weeks after my appointment, my mother and I visited Charleston to book the wedding venue & I could not stop thinking about the 'Caitlyn' gown! I returned with my mom, sisters, future mother and sisters in law and a few friends. That day, I said yes to the dress!


 
Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? I had never heard of Karen Willis Holmes. I’ve always loved Aussie style. I’ve always thought that Australia is first on the trend curve and then they move east (LA picks up the trends next!) After trying on the dress and falling in love, Lesley from B. Loved told me it was an Australian designer. I knew it was meant to be.
 
How many gowns did you try? Around 10
 
Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? B. Loved Bridal Boutique in Columbus, OH
 
What did you especially like about your gown? The back is absolutely incredible – the intricate beadwork over mesh was my favourite. I also loved that it was a classic style with a twist. That describes my personal style to a tee.

Fashion
Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? The girls purchased their dresses through Bella Bridesmaids Charleston. I chose 3 designers and specific colors and they could choose which floor-length silhouette they would prefer. The designers included Natalie Deayala, Joanna August & Nouvelle Amsale.
 
Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? We wanted a simple, yet chic look, so we went with black suits. We allowed the groomsmen to wear their own black suits, and we provided ties, pocket squares and socks.


 
What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party?
Earrings – Stephanie Browne
Rings (worn on right hand) – Turquoise ring – Young in the Mountains, as well as my late grandmother’s gold and diamond ring
For the bridesmaids, I just asked that they keep their jewelry delicate / minimal, preferably rose or yellow gold
 
Where did you get your shoes from? Stuart Weitzman

Other
What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Breathe, relax & enjoy the process. You only get to do this once and it is such a blessing. My father reminded me, which was the best advice, to not lose sight of the purpose of the occasion. The venue, the dress and the décor is fun and lovely, but joining two individuals in marriage is the most special part of all. Cliché but so true! Brides, remind yourselves of this when you’re feeling the post-wedding blues.
 
What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Do not narrow yourself to what you think you may want. Be open-minded because what you see online or in a magazine may not be the best style for you. If you think you have found THE dress (and if it’s Karen Willis Holmes, chances are that it is!) do not rush it. Give yourself a little time, and if you can’t stop thinking about the dress…it’s probably the one.
 
Something Old? My father carried a small bible that his mother / my grandmother carried on her wedding day. She is no longer with us, so it was extra special to have a piece of her on our wedding day. I also had a couple of hankies and rings that have been in the family for a few generations wrapped up in ribbon in my bouquet.
Something New? The dress. The shoes. The ring. The husband!
Something Borrowed? The family hankies and rings. My something old is also my something borrowed.
Something Blue? The little blue KWH signature ribbon sewn on the inside of my dress. And the Young in the Mountains custom turquoise ring.

Suppliers

Photographer -Studio 1250

Philip Casey is the owner & head photographer. He has an incredible eye and is very affordable, especially for his level of skill and attention to detail. He truly loves the art of photography, and he does not just capture weddings. He was able to capture our day so beautifully, and photos are everything!

Wedding Coordinator - Southern Chic Weddings & Events

Amanda Lewis was the best vendor decision for our wedding day. She is incredibly organised and goes above and beyond to make sure her brides are taken care of and completely at ease. Throughout the planning process, I felt like I was her only client. She was very timely with responses and made sure my wants / needs were met first and foremost. I cannot recommend her enough. She is the best!
 
Florist - Flowers on Springtree Lane & Duvall Floral & Decor
Our family friends are local florists in Columbus, Ohio (Flowers on Springtree Lane). These lovely, talented ladies graciously offered to create all floral arrangements outside of the bridal party.
Duvall Floral & Decor, a vendor in Charleston, SC created my beautiful bridal bouquet, as well as my bridesmaids bouquets, the groom and groomsmen boutineers & corsages for mothers and readers.

Videographer - Lowcountry Wedding Films
 
Music - Lee Edwards Entertainment (DJ)
 
First Dance - “Die A  Happy Man” by Thomas Rhett

Celebrant - Friend of the bride & groom (Nick Rinker)
 
Stationery - Oh my! Designs by Steph (Etsy)
 
Menu - Duvall Catering & Events.

We wanted to do Lowcountry fare, so we had stations which included pulled pork, a beef carving station, shrimp & grits, and, best of all, a mac & cheese bar! My favourite hors d’oeuvres was the mini chicken and the waffles with a bacon maple syrup pipette!
 
Cake - Mirabelle Bakery
 
Bombonieres - Duvall Floral & Decor
 
Hair - Ash & Co

Ashley Fisher - Wow! One of my favorite vendors. I am such a perfectionist and I met my match with Ashley! She is incredibly talented & detail-oriented. All the bridesmaids looked amazing, as well! Her team is efficient and a joy to be around. I was so sad when our hair & makeup was complete for the day because I wanted to keep hanging out with Ashley & her team! I cannot recommend her enough to brides anywhere (It would be worth it to fly her to your wedding location!)
 
Make-Up - Dannon Collard

Another vendor at the top of my list. She is incredibly kind and easy to worth with. She really knows how to bring out your best features and give you a natural glow (which is what I wanted). She uses an air brush which provided a flawless finish. Ash & Co also provided makeup for my bridesmaids. They, too, are incredible. Dannon & Ashley are friends and frequently work together so it was a really fun girls day getting ready for my wedding.
 
Wedding Bands - Custom made

Robes - 

Bridesmaids: Plum Pretty Sugar   |    Bride: Homebodii
 
Extra features

At the end of the night, a friend of ours recommended that the DJ play “Piano Man” by Billy Joel as the last song of the evening. All of our guests made a giant circle on the dance floor with Zach and I in the middle. Everyone was singing and swaying. During the last minute or so of the song, everyone crowded in around Zach and I. It was like one giant hug, and you really could feel the love! Our photographer was able to capture the amazing end to the best day. Following this beautiful last song, we had a sparkler send off. We then headed up the torch-lit dirt road to our ‘getaway vehicle’ – a beautiful vintage bus! The upside to this was that it seated 50 passengers, so we gathered our friends and headed out to a dive bar in downtown Charleston to top off the evening. I simply could not let the night end too early!


 
 

Laura & Tim's stunning Lake Tahoe wedding

Posted on 20 Jan, 2017
Laura & Tim's stunning  Lake Tahoe wedding

Stunning American couple Laura and Tim celebrated their wedding in the spectacular Lake Tahoe, California.  The special spot is full of nostalgia for the pair as they used to spend their family holidays here. The summer reception was set in the marina, providing a breathtaking backdrop as the sun set and their friends and family kicked off their shoes and danced into the night. 

Background

How did you meet your (now) husband?  We met through mutual friends. We both lived in San Francisco, and after dating for a year, we moved in together in the Marina district.

How long have you been together? 3 years

Do you have a proposal story? Lake Tahoe, California is our happy place. We both grew up spending Winters skiing and Summers at the beach with our families. We decided last minute to go on a weekend getaway with our new puppy in October. The next day we got up early for a hike and then ended on a pier near Tim’s family cabin. It was still very early in the morning, so nobody was around and it was the most special, intimate, and romantic proposal. Special to have our dog there too!

 

 

The Wedding

What was your wedding date? July 29, 2016

Where?  West Shore Café and Inn, Lake Tahoe

What made you choose there? We knew right after we got engaged we wanted to get married in Lake Tahoe. West Shore Café was one of our first date spots on one of our first of many trips to Lake Tahoe together.
 
How was the weather on the day? It was a perfect summer day. A little cloudy, temperature was 70-80 degrees (21-26 degrees celsius).
 
What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We knew we wanted a Summer wedding.


 
 
The Wedding Details

Theme? Rustic Romantic/Simple Elegance

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? When I think of Lake Tahoe I think of natural beauty. I wanted a lot of greenery and neutral flowers to go with the girls dresses.

Bridal Party

Bridesmaids – who/relationship? 
Amanda Fiorito - Maid of honour, childhood best friend
Kelly Dolan - Matron of honour, childhood best friend
Kimberly Walsh - Cousin
Laura Fujimoto - Matchmaker and teacher friend (colleague)
Sarah Boragno - Sister of the groom
Katie Burton - Friend from college
Giselle Perry- Fellow fire wife (Tim is a fireman)

Groomsmen – who/relationship? 
Zack DiMaggio- best man, childhood best friend
Nick Calderon-best man, childhood best friend
Nick Boragno- brother-in-law
Stephen Cuneo- friend from high school
Daniel Fujimoto-friend from college
Aaron Platfoot-friend from college
John Perry- colleague (fireman)

Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? 
Danny Boragno- nephew
Shannon Boragno-flower girl

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)
 
What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I went to Lovely Bride in San Francisco. The 'Anya' gown was the second dress I tried on, and it was so different from anything I have tried on before. It just felt like me, and I felt so beautiful wearing it!
 
Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Lovely Bride in San Fransisco
 
What did you especially like about your gown? I loved how it sparkled in the sunshine. I truly felt like a princess in it and received SO many compliments. It was also very comfortable and fun to dance in!

 

Fashion
 
Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? The bridesmaids purchased their own dresses of choice from various designers.

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? An online rental company.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I didn’t need many accessories because the dress was already so beautiful. My mother purchased me some simple drop earrings to add that nice simple touch.

Where did you get your shoes from? Badgley Mischka.

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Lovely Bride San Fransisco.



  Other:

What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? To try and stay organised by making a list and just doing one thing at a time! It was also nice to have a partial planning coordinator to help with vendor recommendations and helping make my vision a reality!

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? To wait until you really feel like yourself. That was important to me, I didn’t want to feel like someone different and had to stay true to me and my style.
 

 

 


Suppliers 
 
Florist - Brandie Chisholm

Photographer - One Love Photography

Videographer - Sky Rode Net Media

Music - Moonlight Mobile DJ

First Dance - Jack Johnson, Better Together

Coordinator - Forget Me Knot Events

Stationery - Paper Caper

Menu - West Shore Cafe

Cake - Native Baking Company

Hair - Km Gamache

Make up - Claire Alyse Makeup

Boat - Wild Goose II

Nada + Elliot's Modern Beverly Hills Hotel Wedding

Posted on 18 Jan, 2017
 Nada + Elliot's Modern Beverly Hills Hotel Wedding

Background 

How did you meet your partner?  We met in 2008 in an agency boardroom in Melbourne. Elliot was a TV commercial producer living in Sydney and was doing a commercial for the wine company I was working for. The rest is history!  

How long have you been together?  We’ve been together for 8 wonderful years. 

Do you have a proposal story?  He popped the question on an early morning hike to the top of Park Güell in Barcelona at the very beginning of our European summer vacation.  I was 14 weeks pregnant with our son, Jack!  

The Wedding 

What was your wedding date? Sunday, 18 September 2016 

Location (Ceremony and Reception)?
Ceremony:      Saint Sava Serbian Orthodox Church in San Gabriel Valley.

Reception:       The Beverly Hills Hotel, Los Angeles  

What made you choose there?  My family is Serbian Orthodox and it was important to me to embrace those customs and get married in a traditional Serbian wedding ceremony.  We relocated from Singapore to Los Angeles in 2015 and The Beverly Hills Hotel is so iconic and has so much history.  We wanted guests who were travelling in overseas for the wedding to feel like there was little doubt where they were.  In the heart of B everly Hills, Los Angeles, California.  No other place in LA screams that more than the ‘Pink Palace’ (as the BHH is affectionately known) 

How did you find it?  My husband chose it. I always imagined a more rustic, intimate, outdoor wedding setting. After some deliberation, I agreed to meet with the wedding coordinator and take a tour of the hotel. Needless to say, I fell in love with it straight away. The Sunset Ballroom was the perfect setting, with French doors, beautiful chandeliers, and my favorite feature, the floor to ceiling windows overlooking the pool and signature palm trees on Sunset Blvd. A quintessential Los Angeles backdrop.  

How was the weather on the day?  
It was a typical California day. Warm, blue skies, and with plenty of sunshine. 

What made you decide to get married on this particular date?  We eloped a year ago and wanted to keep the same anniversary date.

 

The Wedding Details 
Them? Keeping in theme with the iconic space, we decided on a Hollywood Glamour theme for the day. The hotel’s famous pink and white cabana stripe and Martinique wallpaper made appearances throughout the décor, while bold lavish floral displays and bright pops of pink and green played up the unique aesthetic of the ballroom.  

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? The classic Beverly Hills Hotel décor and living in L.A.   

Bridal Party
Bridesmaids – who/relationship? My sisters, Yoka and Natasha 
Page boys – who/relationship? My nephews, Alexander and Nicholas 

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