What was your total budget? Please provide a budget breakdown.
- Venue: $6100
- Celebrant: $825
- Catering: $4130
- Photographer: $2300
- Invites: $130
- Bride Dress: $150
- Bride Shoes: $40
- Groom/Groomsmen Attire: $1800
- Cake: $80
- Bridal Party Hair: $300
- Bridal Party Makeup: $320
- Bridesmaid Dresses: $250
- Alcohol: $1600
- Flowers: $1025
- Chairs, Tables, Jukebox: $1800
- Garden games, Vintage furniture: $770
- DIY Decorations: $150
- Favors: $200
Initial Budget: $20,000
Final Budget: $21,970
How many guests did you have?
Total Guests: 92
How did you meet?
We were introduced through mutual friends. The night we met we instantly felt a spark and it was love at first sight. As cliche as that sounds! I remember feeling so nervous and my face turned bright red apparently. The day after we met, Kurt told his best friend that “One day I’m going to marry this girl…” And he did!
What is your proposal story?
It was so simple yet so romantic.
On our 1-year anniversary 11-11-16, Kurt took me to the same location he asked me to be his girlfriend, Nobbys Beach. He handed me a bag with a shoe box in it but said I had to wait until we got to the beach to open it. After a lovely walk, he stopped me and said I could finally open it. Once I opened the shoe box, there was a smaller box in it. I was so confused but loved the suspense. So I opened the next box and inside yet again was a smaller box. I gently shook it and heard something small in it but for some reason, my thoughts went to “Oh he got me earrings!”
I finally got to the last box and it was a beautiful handcrafted black miniature coffin with gold writing on it saying” K(heart) B Marry Me?” It didn’t click at first until I opened it up and saw a beautiful ring with the word “Forever” written inside. I looked up to see Kurt on one knee in front of me and I instantly burst into tears and was filled with so much emotion I couldn’t even say YES, I just kept nodding.
Tell us about your wedding vision.
Kurt and I love simple and humble. We both loved the idea of having a garden / rustic country sort of theme. When we saw Somersby Gardens Estate we knew instantly it was exactly what we were looking for in a venue. I always wanted to have dark red bridesmaid dresses and thankfully Kurt liked that style too, so we matched it with Navy for the boys. These colors were also in the bouquet.
Tell us about your wedding attire.
Kurt and the boys wore a lovely deep navy suit. The boys wore vests without jackets and had deep red ties to match the bridesmaids’ dresses. Kurt wore a slightly darker navy shade and had a full suit with a vest underneath. He also wore a dark red bow tie because he knew I loved seeing him in a bow tie.
The ladies wore a multiway deep red dress. It was sleek and elegant and the thing that was important to me for the girls was that they didn’t look all identical since they’re all unique women in my life. So that is why I chose the multiway dress. They could style the bust area however they liked. Especially because they are all different body shapes and sizes. One dress would not look good on all of them. So this way they could style the dress how they liked it and what would suit their body shape.
My wedding dress was simple but elegantly detailed. It was similar to a princess style but not as big and puffy. There was embroidery from the bust going down the skirt that looked like branches and on those branches was little simple flowers and jewels. It was simple but looked beautiful. I didn’t want an over the top dress.
What was most important to you two while planning? Was there anything you chose to splurge on or skip?
We didn’t want to go overboard and spend money on things just for the sake of spending money. That was probably the most important thing. The venue and the catering were the biggest costs and everything else we tried finding cheap alternatives for or did DIY.
One major thing that I wanted to splurge on was a Victorian style vintage lounge. That was the only thing I really wanted to have and to be used in the photo shoot. It took a bit of convincing for Kurt, but we ended up agreeing that having such a simple piece of furniture would really make our photos look amazing.
What were your favorite parts of the day?
The two main highlights for me was the ceremony and the golden hour photo shoot.
The ceremony was funny and sweet. It wasn’t formal and uptight, there were moments when all nerves melted away. As I walked down the aisle I looked up at Kurt and he looked more nervous than the moment he proposed! Once I reached him I saw the tears in his eyes and when he said I looked beautiful with his voice shaking. It was such a special moment.
Another key moment during the ceremony was when our 11 month of son Seth was in one of the groomsmen arms. He was happy there until the moment I walked down the aisle and then once I reached Kurt, Seth started crying and reaching out to me. We all tried subtly saying shh and calming him down, but I decided to hold him for a moment to reassure him, and the moment he was in my arms he was silent! It was a comical moment and all of the guests laughed. Seth just wanted to be in mums arms. When I gave him back to the groomsmen he started to sulk again so a family member took him for a walk around the gardens. It was just the time of the day that Seth wanted to cuddle up to mum but couldn’t, so it was a funny but ‘aww’ moment.
The golden hour shoot was so romantic. Leanne, the owner of the Estate, led Luisa, Kurt and I to a small cliff area that overlooks the valley surrounding the estate right before sunset. It was a gorgeous sunset over the hills and to be close and romantic with Kurt, no one else except for the photographers, it was perfect. And the photos! Luisa’s photographs were absolutely stunning!
Tell us about your wedding flowers.
I gave full rein to the florist by naming the colors I wanted and letting her create the rest. We didn’t see the flower arrangements until the day of but absolutely loved them.
Tell us about your wedding cake.
I made it! I couldn’t justify paying $300+ for a two-tier naked wedding cake so I decided to make it all myself from Greens cake mix packets from Coles. It was orange and Poppyseed and it was delicious. I decorated it with a little bride, groom, and toddler black plastic silhouette scattered berries all over the top and base of the cake and top it off with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. It took me 2 days to make but only cost me $70 in total.
What did you do for favors?
We decided on giving out magnets to our guests. I designed a bride magnet and a groom magnet saying thank you for joining us. After using photoshop to design the images, we uploaded and ordered them from Vistaprint and got them in a few days. Most people use magnets on their fridges or in their office, so why not make a creative wedding favor where the guests will get use out of it?
Please describe any handmade, DIY or personal items.
All the table decorations were hand made by me. Over the two years of planning, I had collected simmer sauce jars and jam jars to use as table decorations. I took the labels off the jars and tied twine around the outside. I then got tiny little twigs and tied them in a tiny bunch as big as my finger and hot glued it to the twine to give more detail. We had 12 tables including the bridal one and I made around 40 decorated jars. I also put them around the venue and put candles in some, flowers in some, some were empty, and others had twigs from the area in them.
The ceremony area was simple and not over decorated because it was naturally a beautiful area. I did, however, scatter fake gold and peach-colored rose petals down the aisle. These rose petals were also scattered on the tables at the reception. I made bunches of little bouquets from realistic looking fake flowers and tied them with twine to each chair that was right next to the aisle.
Did you include any family heirlooms or special traditions?
My dad passed away 3 months before the wedding due to brain and lung cancer. He was meant to walk me down the aisle, so instead, my mum filled his shoes. To make it feel like he was still there with me, I attached a very small photo of him in a very small frame to my bouquet. That way he was still there in spirit to walk with me.
Do you have any advice for couples planning their wedding now?
Plan ahead and make a budget. Stick to the budget as much as possible. You don’t need expensive things to have a wonderful day because, at the end of it, a wedding is a celebration of love and commitment to each other, not a day to show your guests how much money you can throw away.
Photography: Luisa Dingal Blanco Photography & Film • Ceremony Venue: Somersby Gardens Estate • Reception Venue: Somersby Garden Estate • Floral: Beautiful Blooms of Kurri • Videography: Luisa Dingal Blanco Photography and Film • Rentals: kelly’s Party Hire • Hair: Pretty Little Hair House • Makeup: Make Up By Brittany Antonio • Catering: Coast 2 Coast Golden Roast • Wedding Dress: Ali Express • Groom’s Attire: yd • Bride’s Shoes: eBay • Bridesmaid Dresses: Model Chic • Submitted via: Matchology