Hannah and Nick’s outdoor garden wedding is full of beautiful surprises, not least of which is the bride’s stunning red dress! Their colourful love fest turned romantic evening tea party is anything but traditional – and it certainly shouldn’t be missed. Incredible bouquets, a pretty swing for two, elegant bridesmaid styling and a garden setting that ups the magic after dark are all waiting for you!
The Planning Experience
“Overall it was great! We made time each week, or sometimes each day to talk about the wedding so we had everything booked and paid for well in advance. Of course, there were some days where the idea of heading to city hall on our own felt pretty appealing, but I always had my fiancé and family there to remind me why we were doing this. During the process, we felt more and more excited to have a giant party with all our closest friends and family – who doesn’t like a party?”
“Our amazing venue coordinator styled the ceremony area in all white – including the pergola, Tiffany chairs and aisle runner. As the wedding party and flowers were so colourful, the white made everything pop. Our florist also filled two giant urns with gorgeous Australian natives which stood either side of us.”
“We wanted to enjoy it all and try not to get stressed – easier said than done! We also wanted to do all the planning together. Some people assume the groom doesn’t need or want to be a part of the planning process, but Nick certainly did! Having the time and opportunity to plan the whole day as a team made the process a lot less stressful and much more enjoyable and inclusive.”
Finding the Dress
“I knew from the beginning I would have trouble finding my dress, because I wanted it to be red! I quickly decided to get it made from scratch since I had a clear vision of what it would look like. I found someone who could bring it to life, who helped me with the style as well as finding fabric that would work and was the perfect colour. The process was so efficient that after I was initially measured I only had one dress fitting, some minor changes to make it fit like a glove, and then it was done – six months early! Jo also made my flower girl’s dress with the off-cuts from my wedding dress in that time – she did a great job.”
Bridal Party Styling
“This was easy. I had one bridesmaid, my younger sister Nadia, and I gave her complete freedom to choose what she wanted to wear. She is very stylish so I had nothing to worry about. Nick and I decided the boys should be comfortable and not have to stick to any colour scheme. They picked whatever colour jacket they wanted and went with chino pants.”
“The venue provided lawn games while we were getting our photos taken, and from what I could hear, it was a hit! They served Pimms jugs with fruit and cheese platters while everyone relaxed on the vintage furniture in the gardens, playing croquet, or throwing horse shoes and rings!”
“We wanted an outdoor reception, like a romantic night time tea party. Festoon lighting hung over the tables, through the trees and pointing upwards to create a feature of the gorgeous gardens. Table number cards and menus were in black and gold, and our florist arranged Australian native centrepieces in small clusters of bottles and jars on each table. The lighting bouncing off the trees and flowers created the most magical atmosphere – it was beyond our expectations.”
“Nick’s grandma, Gill Reilly, made 72 jars of her homemade raspberry jam! We covered the tops with a square of hessian and tagged each one. She received a standing ovation for her jam efforts and I received plenty of photos the next day of people having their jam on toast for breakfast. We loved it! And so did Grandma.”
“Dad told me he wanted our ‘daddy daughter dance’ to be a surprise on the night, which was the best idea! After our first dance under a massive tree filled with fairy lights and a chandelier, Dad came over and gave me a big hug and our song started playing. My middle name is Rae, and since I was born, my parents would sing ‘My little *Rae* of Sunshine’ to me, so you can imagine the Kleenex moment that song choice created.”
1. Don’t forget why you’re doing this. It’s easy to get caught up in the planning – reading blogs, buying magazines and clicking through Pinterest with blood shot eyes at midnight. All you’re going to see when walking down that aisle is your fiancé, so relax and make the planning an enjoyable process. Your wedding day is only the first day of your lives together.
2. Don’t sweat the petty details. People love giving their opinion on the tiniest things! It took me a while to warm up to the fact that everyone wanted to be involved, and be ‘helpful’, and I started to think they were doing it because they thought I was ‘incapable’ or wanted to make it about themselves. But really, they are there because they love you and care about you, and are so happy and excited that they can’t stop thinking about these things.
So, if mum wants a certain song on the playlist, or your fiancé’s aunty gives you ‘special napkins’ to use at the bridal table, then just do it. Your guests aren’t going to go home and discuss what napkins you were using or what colour the centrepieces were. They are going to remember how much fun they had. Your aunty, however, may remember the napkins fondly!
3. Well my last two were kind of long, so I’ll just say…If your reception is on grass, wear flats or shoes with a chunky heel. Don’t be sinkin’.
Location: Mount Tamborine, Queensland | Photography: Sophie Baker Photography | Venue & Styling: Tea & Niceties | Celebrant: Cas Veriga | Flowers: Bramble Haus | Gown: PQ Fashions | Bridesmaid Dress: Casar Emporium | Hair: Harajuku Hair & Makeup | Makeup: Lara Quinn | Suits: MJ Bale | Cake: Sweet Melissa’s Cakes | Lighting & Audio: Microhire