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Samantha & Wayne's NYC elopement

Posted on 23 Mar, 2015
Samantha & Wayne's NYC elopement


How did you meet your (now) husband? Through a mutual friend who we also had as our MC for our celebration back in Sydney

How long have you been together? 5 years (met late August 2009)

Do you have a proposal story? Wayne proposed in Bali January 2014 while on holidays. He had planned a romantic evening the second night of the trip but that was all thrown out when I become ill. After trying to plan a second romantic night on New Year’s eve, Wayne was once again forced to abandon all plans due to a torrential rain and me stating this was the most un-romantic night ever! Running out of time before flying home, finally the stars aligned and he proposed. Not the most of romantic of nights but will always remember.


The Wedding

What was your wedding date? 1st October 2014

Location (Ceremony)

1.    Where?     City Hall, New York.

2.     What made you choose there? A month or two into our engagement we started discussing what sort of wedding we wanted. It was simple; all we wanted was to have fun, do something that was different and to keep it about the two of us.

We stumbled across a photo on a wedding blog which led us to the thought of getting married in New York. Our minds were quickly made up that this was what we wanted to do. We kept it a secret from family and friends which at times was ridiculously hard but exciting at the same time as we had our own little secret. We finally told both sets of parents two weeks prior to flying to New York to elope. Both sets of parents could not have been more supportive. We were married at City Hall, New York and spent the day walking the streets with a photographer capturing our story.

 Later that evening I changed and we finished the night up with a beautiful dinner at the amazing The Modern located at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. The reatureant knew we had gotten married that day and treated us amazingly all night and made us feel like royalty from the moment we walked in.

How did you find it? A day we will never forget as was completely perfect.

How was the weather on the day? The sky was like something out of a movie as was the most amazing shade of grey with dark clouds. It rain on and off throughout the day but neither of us minded at all. We were getting married and that’s all the mattered. In some ways the weather suited the city of New York perfectly and made our photos look amazing.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? No particular reason really. I guess I wanted to have a date that was easy for Wayne to remember!

Also, my younger brother was competing at the World Ironman in Kona Hawaii later in October and we planned our dates to travel to New York around that as we had promised him we would be there on the sidelines to support and cheer him on.

The Wedding

What was your date? 8th November 2014

Location (Reception)

1.     Where?     Sydney Dance Lounge, Walsh Bay

2.     What made you choose there? I stumbled across the venue whilst looking at some of our photographers online photos. When we went to visit the venue it was love at first sight as from the moment we both walked in we knew this is where we wanted our celebration to be. It suited both of us perfectly and was the perfect venue for the style of night we wanted to achieve. The staff there (Robert) could not of been any easier to deal with either as he was so laid back and easy to work with. It was really important to us to work with people that were easy going and fun as that was exactly what we wanted to whole night to be about.

What made you decide to get married on this particular date? We didn’t get back from our elopement/ honeymoon till the end of October so there was just enough time to make the final plans. That night was the first time we had seen the majority of our friends and extended family since being back from overseas so it really created a fun sense of excitement.

The Wedding Details

Theme (if any – colours, features, etc.)? We chose Sydney Dance Lounge as it had hints of New York. We didn't want to do too much to the space and wanted to keep it simple and beautiful. We chose to only decorate with only flowers and seeing as it was a stand up cocktail party, we moved the flowers from the tables too the ceiling. What our florist achieved was simply magical!! It was like walking into rainforest of beautiful flowers showering over us.

Vibe was relaxed and to have FUN!

Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from?  To be honest, I would love to lay claim to the amazing floral arrangements at our celebration being all my idea but it was the amazing Justine Rose that came up with it. I told her to do whatever she wanted and to use whatever flowers she wanted to use as I totally trusted her. What she achieved was above and beyond what I could of dreamed of.

Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What? No. To be totally honest with you I am not crafty in any way what-so-ever!! Both Wayne and I work long hours and have busy jobs so just didn’t have the time to be able to do anything ourselves. Being away up until just before the night also didn’t allow us anytime to do anything ourselves.

Bridal Party

1.     Bridesmaids – who/relationship? Didn’t have any

2.     Groomsmen – who/relationship? Didn’t have any

3.     Flower girls/Page boys – who/relationship? Didn’t have any

Wedding Gown (the most important part!)

What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I saw my dress online and new straightaway that I wanted to come in and try it on.

Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Yes featured on so many blogs. Am a big fan of them. I must also confess to day dreaming into the window of the Paddington store every time I walked past.

How many gowns did you try? 4 in total all at KAREN WILLIS HOLMES. The first down I tried on was the one that I got as loved it straight away.

Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington, Sydney. Hannah Kate was absolutely amazing and one of the sweetest people I can honestly say that I have met. Every time I came into the store she was so lovely. As I was eloping I came in originally to look at the dress and filled Hannah Kate in on us eloping to New York. She was so good as when I came back in with my Mum she was great and went along with my story of looking for a dress to get married here in Sydney.

Susan did my actual dress making and she was beyond fantastic. As my Mum didn’t know about our plan to elope nor did I have any bridesmaids, I came to most of my fittings alone. Susan was great in making me feel special each and every time. She was like a mother to me at each fitting.

What did you especially like about your gown? I wanted a lace gown although needed to also keep in mind that I needed a dress that could travel well as would be taking it with me over to New York. I also wanted a gown that would be comfortable for a long day walking the streets of New York and something that would be practical as I knew I had a lot of walking to do in New York and having a big full gown or a gown with a long train, however beautiful, just wouldn’t work for me.

I snuck in one afternoon to take a look at dresses. It was hard not to take my Mum for my first visit but needed to keep our plan of marrying in New York a secret. I could not of asked for more loving ladies, who at times took on the role of mother/friend whilst going for fittings.

My dress now has as many frequent flyers points as i do, as travelled around the USA with us.

I also consider myself extremely luck as not many girls get to wear their wedding dress twice.


Who is your bridesmaid dress supplier? n/a

Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? Wayne’s suit was made. We had travelled to Thailand earlier last year and he had gotten a few suits made whilst over there. He kept in contact with the gentleman that made it and then arranged to have his wedding suite made by him too.

What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I had a very simple pair of drop earrings purchased via KAREN WILLIS HOLMES. I also had a lovely belt purchased from KAREN WILLIS HOLMES. It just finished the dress off perfectly and gave it a bit of colour to break the lace up. As it was separate from the dress it’s something that I can wear again.

Where did you get your shoes from? Ask anyone, I am totally obsessed with shoes!!! I think I was more excited and actually took longer to find my shoes that I did my gown. I wore a beautiful pair of Jimmy Choo heels that were a dream!

Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? A hair slide that was from KAREN WILLIS HOLMES. It matched my belt and was nice and simple but gave me that little bit of bling.



What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Don't get caught up in other peoples expectations of what you should do. If you want a big wedding have a big wedding and if you want keep it small there is nothing wrong with that either. Keep in mind it's your day not everyone else's.

We had total faith in all the suppliers we had chosen. We picked them for their style and let them guide us in what would or wouldn't work.

What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? I really doesn’t need to be hard. If you love the first dress you try on don’t think you need to track around trying on dress after dress. You will honestly know if it’s the dress for you within seconds of walking out of the change room.

Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day. Our dear friend Louise Rash MC'd our celebration for us. We texted her whilst getting photos done that we were heading to the venue and would be there in five mins. Upon seeing us walking towards the venue she took her position on the mic and proceeded to introduce us to all our family and friends. After hitting play on our entrance music and a few awkward glances to the door she announced to everybody "They're not there". Meanwhile up the other end of the pier we were sneaking in some extra sunset photos oblivious to what was going on inside the venue. From what we are told Louise handled it like a pro and kept everyone entertained.

Something Old? I unfortunately lost my Nana in July last year. She had left me her wedding band which I wore in both New York and again in Sydney.

Something New? My dress

Something Borrowed? Didn’t have anything

Something Blue? The lovely ladies at KAREN WILLIS HOLMES  sew a little blue ribbon box into my dress for me.



Florist – Justine Rose from Justine Rose. She was the most amazing delight to work with

Photographer – New York – Jesse from Golden Hour Studios & in Sydney Studio Something

Videographer – Didn’t get a traditional video made. Studio something are making a stop motion video for us using photos from the night in Sydney.

Music – The beautifully talented Elle May sang for the first 3hrs of the night then we got stuck into dancing with our DJ from Beat Geek.

First Dance - I Don't Mind by Defeater

MC – our dear friend Louise Rash.

Stationery –The Print Fairy

Menu – Finger food from the Sydney Dance Lounge. We also had an amazing cheese buffet which was also arranged by the Sydney Dance Lounge.

Cake – Simmone Logue

Hair – New York – Cari Duprey & Sydney the lovely Steven Perkins at Debarko

Make up - New York – Cari Duprey & Sydney Napoleon

Wedding Bands – designed and made by Geoff at Geogem

 Extra features – We walked into the celebration in Sydney to Empire State of Mind - Alicia Keys & Jay Z which was fun

 Other – Jesse, our New York photographer, had another Aussie couple who eloped to  in New York last November hire him based on seeing a photos they saw of us on Instagram!!. This made us so happy to know that another couple also got to know Jesse experience the great day we shared with him. Jesse was also our witness for our ceremony at City Hall. He was great as even captured our ceremony (shortest ceremony ever as went for about 2mins!) as had his GoPro strapped to his head filming whilst he took photos.