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Sara & Drew

— Classic Hunter Valley Wedding


16 July 2013


85 people

Sara & Drew By Justin Aaron
Sara & Drew By Justin Aaron

HOW WE MET: Drew was playing in a hardcore band at the time when we were first introduced by mutual friends. We were ‘just friends’ for many years before lovers!

OUR ENGAGEMENT STORY: Drew whisked me away on a last minute ‘work’ trip to Byron Bay. When we pulled up at Rae’s at Wategoes I wondered if it was too good to be true & it was! After putting on a pair of heels I asked Drew if he thought they were too sparkly to wear to the ‘work’ function to which Drew replied to keep them on because he had something sparkly to go with them! 

MARRIAGE TO US MEANS: Drew’s grooms speech really captured what marriage means to us  - ‘our love is no ordinary love, it is a once in a lifetime love. Marriage is not about finding a person you can live with, but someone you cannot live without’.

WEDDING LOCATION: We were married in the Hunter Valley NSW at St Patrick’s of Nulkaba & our reception was held at Robert’s Restaurant. We didn’t know until the day, but Drew’s Grandmother was actually a bridesmaid at exactly the same church 67 years to the day.

THEME/STYLE When I started out planning our wedding I had a few false starts on the style but reverted to a classic elegant feel. We wanted our wedding to have elements of tradition but with a modern twist of a dinner party atmosphere.

BUDGET: I’d hate to know!!!

PHOTOGRAPHY: Our photographer was Justin Aaron. We had seen some of Justin’s work previously & were really taken by his style. Justin has such a relaxed approach & is amazing at capturing candid moments.

BRIDE’S DRESS: My Mum once told me that she wanted nothing to do with picking my wedding dress because I am so indecisive, but it was the easiest decision I have ever made! I loved the idea of a winter wedding because it seemed like a perfect opportunity to do something different. I would describe my look as classic with a fashion edge. I first spotted my dress in a magazine & went straight the designer Steven Khalil who with a few teaks to the original, created my dream dress.

BRIDE’S SHOES: My shoes were bought before even picking my dress! They were Sergio Rossi mermaid booties from Miss Louise

BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: My beautiful best girlfriends & sister-in-law wore a mixture of gold & silver sequin dresses. The dresses were sourced from Johanna Johnson & Rachel Gilbert

BRIDESMAID’S SHOES: The girls shoes were from Tony Bianco & were in varying colours of gold & silver.

JEWELLERY/ACCESSORIES: I had a beautiful YSL silver clutch & the bridesmaids wore pearl & crystal dome studs by Mimco.

WEDDING RINGS: My engagement ring & wedding band was from Canturi. I designed Drew’s ring as a surprise & it was made by a local jeweller.

GROOMSMEN ATTIRE: Drew looked very handsome in a suit tailored by P.Johnson. Drew wanted a modern interpretation of a classic tux. 


I was conscious I wanted to look like me so I went for a more polished version of my everyday look. The girls had their hair styled in simple donut buns. Our hair was done by the delightful Deena from Chic Artistry.

MAKEUP: Again I wanted my makeup to be an extension of my everyday look, just a touch more dramatic. The lovely Jes O’Brien made us come to life!

STATIONERY/INVITATIONS: I had a meltdown when I read in a magazine that your invitation MUST set the scene for the day – talk about pressure! After lots of deliberation we went with Bespoke Letterpress & couldn’t have been happier with how they turned out. Once the invitations were sorted I felt like I had more direction with styling.


We chose to give our guests a cd with a selection of songs we had on the day. Small bags were also available for guests to take home flowers from the reception room.

FLOWERS & BOUQUETS: I had a large bouquet of white imported peonies, tulips, roses & sweet pea. The bridesmaids had the similar with the addition of silver dusty miller. Flowers were provided by Jade McIntosh Flowers.

PREPARATION: The girls & I got ready at Pepper’s Convent. We started the day off with breakfast followed by a high tea lunch.

CEREMONY DÉCOR: Ceremony flowers was taken care of by the owner of St Paticks, Jenny.

RECEPTION DÉCOR: I had Jessica Coleman from The Wedding Designer help to create my vision for the room. I had collected a mixture of antique pieces as well as pieces borrowed from Jess. Jess & her team used green moss down the centre of the tables entwined with tiny fairy lights & a mixture of silverware & candelabras. There was also a lovely flower instalment hanging from the rafter featuring gorgeous phalaenopsis orchids. 


WEDDING STYLIST: Jessica Coleman from The Wedding Designer.

CAKE: Our wedding cake was a vase shaped cake with tiny pearl detail & magnolia sugar flowers on top. The main cake was red velvet & the kitchen cake was caramel mud. The cake was displayed on a beautiful antique silver platter supplied by Jess.

WEDDING SONGS: I walked down the aisle to Video Games by Lana Del Ray. We signed the register to Angels by The XX. We walked out to All I Want is You by Barry Louis Polisar. We walked into the reception to Jackson by Johnny Cash & our first dance was Tiny Dancer by Elton John.

ENTERTAINMENT: Drew created our playlist for the evening, we also had local artist Jen Buxton sing some of our favourite songs during dinner & DJ for the rest of the night.

FOOD & BEVERAGES: Food was really important to Drew & I & Robert’s exceeded all of our expectations. We had cocktail style canapés followed by a formal sit down meal.

TRANSPORT: Natalie’s Limousines provided us with three silver Jag’s.

HONEYMOON: Drew & I made a last minute decision to head to Bali for ten days to unwind. We spent some time in Seminyak & then went to Nusa Lembongan for the first time & absolutely loved it.

GIFT REGISTRY: We had a honeymoon wishing well.

CELEBRANT: Our celebrant was Jenny Noblet. Jenny really listened to what we wanted & transformed our ideas into a lovely ceremony. 


A MEMORABLE MOMENT: Drew referring to me as his wife for the first time was so surreal & our first dance when all of our guests joined us on the dance floor & brought the house down with Tiny Dancer!

ONE THING I WISH I KNEW BEFORE I STARTED MY WEDDING PLANS… I did sweat the small stuff - but in the end, on the day no one else really notices!

IF I COULD GIVE OTHER BRIDES TO BE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE… Be organised early, otherwise that last week in the lead up can be chaotic. It’s cliché, but also enjoy the process – you only do it once!



BRIDE'S DRESS: Steven Khalil

BRIDE’S SHOES: Sergio Rossi 

BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: Johanna Johnson & Rachel Gilbert





HAIR: Chic Artistry 

MAKEUP: Jes O'brien 


FLORIST: Jade McInstosh Flowers

CAKE: Bec’s Cake Creations 

WEDDING STYLIST: The Wedding Designer

CELEBRANT: Jenny Noblet

WEDDING VENUE: Robert’s Restaurant



TRANSPORT: Natalie’s Limousines 


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