After having everything planned for their rustic meets Gatsby wedding, Kate and Tom had to rethink a major part after their reception venue burnt down. Find out how they picked themselves up and created a stunning celebration, complete with stylish details, creative ideas and a fabulous wedding day playlist!
“Our reception venue burnt down six weeks before the wedding. We awoke one morning to the news headline, ‘Wedding dreams up in flames’. While nobody wants to see that, we knew we were going to get married no matter what – whether it be a BBQ at the beach or celebration drinks at the pub, it would be fine.
Luckily a new yacht club had opened in the next town. We were the first wedding they had ever hosted, but you couldn’t tell. Our reception venue didn’t look like what we had originally envisaged, but when it was filled with people and laughter, it was perfect.”
The Dress Search
“I had chosen my dress in my mind before we had done anything else. When I tried it on, it looked horrible! I didn’t want to change my shape for a dress, but I was feeling disheartened. My mum convinced me to look in one more shop. I fell in love with the second dress I tried on.” Kate’s bouquet featured peonies, David Austin Juliet roses and grey gum with soft cascading greenery.
“We had chosen a quaint little church, which already had lots of charm. My mum made pew ends with gum nuts, gum leaves, baby’s breath and peppercorn.”
“When I walked down the aisle I saw my Nan, who I hadn’t seen in months. Without thinking, I stopped to give her a kiss. As I didn’t have my glasses on, I didn’t see Tom’s face until I was at the altar – he looked pretty happy, so I was happy about that! Waiting for the priest to give us permission to kiss, Tom just grabbed me and gave me a big kiss. Then seeing a room full of friends and family who have all shaped our lives, all there together – meeting each other, dancing and sharing laughs – all great moments.”
“With five bridesmaids located across three states, we decided to go to a franchise retailer that would allow each of them to go into a store and try on the dress. The bridesmaids wore a dress from Review. The sheer lace at the front, V back and box pleated skirt with tulle petticoat suited all the girls, giving them a classic feminine shape. I also gave each of the girls a unique vintage-inspired hairpiece to wear.”
“Tom had been watching Peaky Blinders on TV. That pretty much provided direction for the boy’s outfit.”
“The reception room was larger than the original venue and not quite as ‘rustic’ as we’d planned. We decorated the ceiling with bunting and fairy lights and placed buckets of gum, peppercorn, baby’s breath and tortured willow around the room. We covered every table top with flowers and candles.
The centrepieces were made up of eclectic bottles, jars and crystal cut tea light holders on staggered wood blocks. An antique timber ladder was used to fill some space with wrapped copper fairy lights, flowers and candle holders.”
1. Down the aisle: An instrumental cover of the Temper Trap’s, ‘Sweet Disposition’
2. Leaving the church: ‘Home’, by Edward Sharp & the Magnetic Zeros
3. Cake cutting: ‘All I Want Is You’, by Barry Louise Polisar
4. First dance: ‘Ho Hey’, by the Lumineers
5. Cheesy dance floor filler: ‘You’re the Voice’, by John Farnham
“As we were by the sea, Tom thought of asking guests to leave a ‘message in a bottle’. We invited them to write a message, roll it up and put it in a bottle to be opened on our anniversary.”
“Tom and I had one dance lesson before the wedding. About ten minutes before the dance we realised we had not practiced since the lesson, not even once! We ran down the corridor to practice. It was nice to have those moments just the two of us. I think our dancing was pretty terrible, but we didn’t care.”
1. Talk to each other and find out what each of you want for the day.
2. It’s not a show, you are not performing – this day does not define who you are.
3. Create a master run sheet that can be tailored for the suppliers (with phone numbers, addresses, maps etc) so you’re not repeating yourself.
4. Choose music that even the oldies will know. You want everyone to share in the dancing.
5. Taste the food first if you can. I spent so much time on decorations, but it was the food and drinks that everyone remembers.
Location: VIC | Photography: elk & willow | Venue: Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron | Flowers: Poppy Culture | Cake: Simply Cakes Melbourne | Dress: Maggie Sottero | Hair and Makeup: Sallie Hair and Makeup | Car: Classic Memories Car Hire