Jeremy & Nicole's fresh, organic aesthetic fused with the raw romanticism of the Uki hinterland made for a magical wedding reception.
Married under a four-bear arbour crafted from firewood and adorned with a beautifully unstructured arrangement of Australian natives, the wedding took place overlooking a backdrop of vast, sweeping greenery and rolling mountainous landscapes.
Inspired by sun-drenched aisles, hints of gold and a palette of deep berry hues, Nicole styled every element of the day with her Grandmother's wedding in mind.
The quaint verandah of Mavis's Kitchen was the perfect setting for a palette of crisp whites, musky pink accents and gorgeous rambling wildflowers to evoking a mood reminiscent of bygone eras and old-world Australian glamour.
Who better to capture each moment than one of our favourite photographers, the talented Joseph Willis.
HOW WE MET: It was a country and western bonfire night at the local church, he still remembers to this day what I was wearing, white jeans, blue flannie and cowgirl boots. He was a 16 year old surfer boy with dreadlocks and a bad reputation and me, a shy 14 year old church girl. We became friends and over the years but were always too shy to tell each other how we really felt. When the truth finally came out, he told me he still wanted to be best friends when we were old and grey, that’s how he knew he wanted to marry me one day. He was my first kiss and I was his first love and will be forever after.
OUR ENGAGEMENT STORY: It was a rainy windy night in May we had planned a date night but Jeremy called me saying he was too tired from a hard day at work and wanted to go for a drive to the beach and get hot chocolates. Once at the beach Jeremy asked if I wanted to go for a walk across the road through the park, I complained that it was too windy and cold but he wrapped me up in a blanket and persisted until I agreed.
As we were walking he held my hand tightly in his and that’s when I noticed a path of tea light candles in brown paper bags lining the path and lanterns scattered through the trees. Jeremy asked me in a shaky voice if I knew where we were and I did; we were walking towards the table that he had first told me he loved me and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me so many years ago. We came to a circle surrounded by candlelight and he got down on one knee and holding my hand he said ‘Nicole, I've loved you since the day I met you, you make me the happiest man in the world, will you marry me?’
With tears streaming down my face I jumped into his arms and said ‘Of course I will’. He could barely put the ring on my finger our hands were shaking so much -not because of the cold, but the overwhelming excitement. There was a picnic basket waiting with champagne and his brothers were hiding in the trees and capturing every moment in photos. Words are not adequate to describe how perfect the night was. He wanted me to be completely surprised and I was. It was such a beautiful expression of his love for me.
MARRIAGE TO US MEANS: Loving unconditionally, honouring
each other in everything we do, fiercely guarding each others'
hearts, working everyday on deepening our friendship and supporting
each other in our wildest dreams, never ever forgetting the
THEME/STYLE: My inspiration came from many places - The LANE of course being one. My grandmother’s wedding also inspired me, her bridesmaids wore ivory and her flowers were gorgeously unique and wild. I wanted something that highlighted the raw simplistic beauty of enchanting Australiana. I was so inspired by sun-drenched aisles, hints of gold, touches of luscious berry reds and vast, sweeping greenery.
BRIDE’S DRESS: I had a lot of trouble finding a dress that fit my price range that was also elegant yet soft with a touch of unstructured bohemia. I ended up designing my own dress and the lovely Sue from Strictly Bridal made it for me. French ivory lace was appliquéd throughout the bodice and below the hips, which then flowed into soft tulle. The lining was in a champagne silk. Raw lace edges complimented the plunging neckline and the fishtail silhouette.
BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: For the bridesmaids, I wanted something timeless yet unstructured and soft to compliment the raw beauty of Mount Warning and vast green landscapes that would form the backdrop to the ceremony arbour. After buying 30 meters of fabric to make them, I walked into Witchery one day and tried on a beautifully simple ivory dress. It was love at first sight.
WEDDING RINGS: I saw my dream ring in the window of Michael Hill a year and a half before Jeremy proposed. I loved the antique detailing on the sides and it seemed breathtaking from every angle. Of course I told him about it, but he said it was way out of his budget. Needless to say it was extremely romantic when he slipped it onto my finger that rainy night in May.
GROOMSMEN ATTIRE: The groomsmen looked so suave in navy trousers from Roger David, with crisp white shirts, black bow ties and black suspenders. I loved that the groomsmen didn’t shave or get hair cuts for the day but kept their individual style.
STATIONERY/INVITATIONS: My amazing sister Dana Ried happened to buy a an old letterpress machine only a few years ago and now runs a unique letterpress stationary company called Birds of a Feather. I sketched some native Australian Queen Proteas (inspired from our wedding flowers) that she embossed onto sheets of wooden veneer to become our main invitation. Additional cards were printed on 100% cotton stock in metallic gold ink, complete with envelope liners I water coloured myself. The table menus were also watercoloured and tied with twine and fresh herbs along with the napkins.
FLOWERS & BOUQUETS: Elyssium Blooms helped create a gorgeous unstructured and earthy design of native Australian flowers and greenery. The bridal bouquet consisted of soft whites and the bridesmaids bouquets consisted of deep berry colours. Simple flower designs were also included in the hairstyles of the bridal party.
CEREMONY DÉCOR/ RECEPTION DÉCOR: Mount Warning and surrounding lush Australian bush was captivating and created a beautiful aura. We chose to compliment it with a simple four beam arbour created by my brother in law out of firewood. The florist created an unstructured floral arrangement out of Australian flowers and greenery that hung along the top of the arbour. Tall, white Delphinium flower gardens growing out of foliage lined the aisle. Our signing table, which later became our cake table, was my mother’s beautiful antique sowing table. It’s drawers were overflowing with flowers.
The canapé area in Mavis’s organic gardens was filled with persian rugs, hay bales and more Delphinium gardens, perfect for taking polaroids and playing croquet. The reception was held in the quaint Queenslander-style veranda of Mavis’s Kitchen. Greenery was strung along the roof and dimmed festoon lights set the ambience for the night. The tables were set with mixed metal and brass goblets that I had collected from different thrift shops, gold plate chargers and fresh flowers and greenery lined the middle of the tables. Jeremy’s dad made us table numbers out of raw wooden logs we found in a park and the seating plan was displayed on a hanging screen of greenery with wooden pegs and natural paper.
Jeremy and I chose to have a sweetheart table as we knew the day would be a blur and we wanted to be able to cherish that time and soak it all in together, whilst looking out at our loved ones. We re-used the arbour flowers for our table and behind us was a soft, gold sequinned backdrop which my mother and I created. Hung in front of the back drop was a luscious wreath of greenery. This area later transformed into the dance floor. All hired items were from the beautiful sisters of The Collector and Co.
WEDDING PLANNER/ WEDDING STYLIST: With the help of my close friends and sisters we styled Jeremy and I’s wedding. The staff at Mavis’s Kitchen were so fabulous and hands on in all the setting up and packing down - we were so grateful to have them help on the day.
CAKE: My sister’s mother in law is a Romanian chef so she created a divine hundred-layer chocolate cake with a thick, traditional white icing. Flowers were scattered over the layers.
WEDDING SONGS: We wanted to chose songs that symbolised wonderful moments throughout our relationship. The most significant songs that were played throughout our day were 'Higher Love' by James Vincent McMurrow for the bridesmaids and flower girls' processional song and 'Who Am I to Say' by Hope for the bridal procession. Our first dance song has been one of our favourites for a long time, so we danced to 'The Wedding Song' by Angus and Julia Stone.
ENTERTAINMENT: Our close friends Sarah and Jason Lucas from A Boy and A Girl, co-ordinated our playlists and sound throughout the day. For the dancing Jeremy and I created a playlist with all of our favourite songs as well as a few old country songs my dad had to contribute.
FOOD & BEVERAGES: Local boutique beer & wine was served as well as bubbly, of course. Mavis’s Kitchen prides themselves on using their own homegrown organic fruits, vegetables and herbs in their dishes. We had beautiful canapés using Mavis's Kitchen's fresh ingredients, and for the main course a choice between Baked Atlantic Salmon Fillet and Eye Fillet Beef Wellington with organic potatoes & summer vegetables. For dessert, the most mouthwatering Hazelnut & Chocolate Brownie Cake or Roulade meringue served with Mango & Passionfruit.
TRANSPORT: My Pappa drove Peter’s (Owner of Mavis’s Kitchen) old 1950’s black Jaguar with my Mum and I to the ceremony location.
HONEYMOON: We honeymooned in Bali and it was both a relaxing and exciting adventure, exploring rice paddies, deserted beaches and exotic restaurants. We ate and drank to our hearts content, bathed in the sun all day and enjoyed the tropical rains at night.
GIFT REGISTRY: We were incredibly blessed through a Wishing Well.
CELEBRANT: Our dear friend, Pastor Gary MacDonald from Metro Church on the Gold Coast.
ANY OTHER SPECIAL DETAILS: Leading up to the wedding I had an impossible time finding earrings that I wanted to wear with my dress. On the day I had five pairs of gorgeous pearl and diamond and swarovski earrings my auntie, mum and sisters had all lent to me, hoping it would be easier for me to choose on the day.
However, when Jeremy and I exchanged gifts, I opened a small velvet pouch that inside were the most beautiful earrings I had ever seen - they were antique, turkish silver and ruby. I had seen them in a store window when we were camping in Brunswick when Jeremy noticed that I lingered a little longer looking at them. The went perfectly with the deep earthy red lipstick I already had on. It was the most precious surprise and I will cherish them forever.
A MEMORABLE MOMENT: An hour before the ceremony, Jeremy was blindfolded and led by his best man to the gardens where I was waiting with my eyes closed. It was the most intense and emotional moment of the whole day. Jeremy held my hand and he prayed for our lives together and thanked God for His grace and the beauty he had endowed on this memorable day. I could hear him tearing up and his hands were shaking in mine, I could not stop crying long enough to say ‘Amen’.
IF I COULD GIVE OTHER BRIDES TO BE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE… Be yourself, and do not be afraid to do things differently. Your day should be an expression of both of you and your love for each other. Advice from other’s is always appreciated but it always comes back to listening to your own heart.
JEREMY & NICOLE'S CONTACTS:
PHOTOGRAPHY: Joseph Willis
BRIDE'S DRESS: Specially made by Strictly Bridal
BRIDE’S SHOES: Nine West
BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: Witchery
BRIDESMAIDS SHOES: Wittner
GROOMS FORMAL WEAR: Roger David
HAIR & MAKEUP: Erin Gallienne
FLORIST: Elyssium Blooms
CATERING: Mavis's Kitchen
STATIONERY/INVITATIONS: Birds of a Feather Co.
WEDDING VENUE: Mavis's Kitchen
ENTERTAINMENT: A Boy & A Girl
DECOR: The Collector and Co.
VIDEOGRAPHER: Jason Pavey Films