The timeless wedding of Amber & Broc began in a classic Parisian church. Towering, darkly lit walls created a dramatic feel. The Bride (and designer Amber Chloe) ethereal in her self created gown, intricately embellished sleeves in perfect harmony with luxurious floor length silk.
Inspired by the romance of Paris, the pair opted for a quintessentially French ballroom to host the reception. Crystal chandeliers and heavily draped curtains created a intimate oasis for guests, cascading roses and bold silver detailing echoing the lavish surrounds.
Photographed by LANE handpicked photographer, Lelia Scarfiotti
NAMES: Amber Chloe Koeman & Broc Stewart McCauley
WEDDING DATE: September 3rd, 2016
GUEST NUMBERS: 126
HOW WE MET: Broc and I went to university together. We met through a mutual friend in our last semester, at the local bar.
OUR ENGAGEMENT STORY: Broc isn’t usually one for grand gestures or surprises so this was a complete shock to me. We had just taken our dog for a walk and when we got home, he called me into our bedroom saying Milo (our dog) had a surprise for me. I walked in to find both of them on our bed, and a ring box beside them. I was so surprised - not because he was proposing after eight years, but because I always thought I’d know when he was about to. We were meant to meet another couple for lunch so I didn’t really have to time to let it sink in or contact friends and all my family in Europe were still asleep. I wanted to cancel lunch but Broc promised it would be quick and was pretty adamant about going. When I arrived, there were 40 of our closest friends and family shouting surprise. It was the perfect day.
MARRIAGE TO US MEANS: Letting our love develop to depths we have never explored and taking on life together as a team.
WEDDING LOCATION: We had our ceremony at The American Church in Paris, France. This is actually the church my parents go to. It is also one of the most beautiful churches I have ever seen and now the most special. My mother and stepfather have lived in Paris for the past few years. When I was younger and living in England, they had a holiday house in the Loire Valley and that has been our family home for over 17 years. So through that I have spent a lot of time in Paris and it holds a very special place in my heart. I knew that’s where I would marry and luckily, Broc was on board too.The reception was held at the exclusive Cercle de l'Union Interalliée Club. This place is incredible. It is so quintessentially french. We knew as soon as we walked in, this was it. The décor and the garden outside are breathtaking, as much as I wanted to put my own touch on everything, it really didn’t need much.
THEME/STYLE: It was classic and elegant in style. Each room of our venue had grand chandeliers and intricate mouldings on the walls and ceilings, reminiscent of Louis XIV. We wanted our guests to have an incredible and lavish Paris experience and to give them a night they would always remember. The theme was black tie to suit the venue’s strict dress code, but also because we thought it would be fun for everyone to get dressed up for a night out in Paris.
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PHOTOGRAPHY: Lelia Scarfiotti was our photographer. We skyped with Lelia a few times before meeting her and felt a connection right away. She understood what we wanted and her candid, creative and romantic style suited us. She made us feel so relaxed and we trusted her completely. Broc and I are pretty awkward in front of a camera and Lelia was able to counter this well. I couldn’t stop looking through our photos when they arrived and I still can’t, the amount of detail and emotion Lelia captured is incredible. The photography was one of the most important aspects for me and I am so happy we chose Lelia and she chose us.
WEDDING RINGS: Broc’s wedding band was a Platinum Milgrain style from Tiffany’s. It was especially meaningful as it’s the same band my Mom and Stepfather have. My wedding band has five round brilliant diamonds. It took me a while to find a band to suit my ring, and we fell in love with this one we found in an antique jewelry store. Broc designed and chose my engagement ring himself. He based it off my Mom's ring he knew I always loved. It’s a solitaire diamond with a baguette on each side.
BRIDE’S DRESS: My dress was my own brand, Amber Chloe. As a designer, I always knew I wanted to create my own wedding dress and I loved every minute of it. Choosing the fabrics, working closely with my dressmaker, seeing and experiencing the finished product were all important parts of the process for me and added to my experience as a bride. The dress had to be hand sewn so a lot of love and hard work went into it, but it was exactly how I imagined it to be and more.
BRIDESMAID'S DRESSES: The bridesmaid’s dresses were also Amber Chloe. Sticking to the black tie theme, I didn’t want to make a typical floor length gown; I wanted the girls to feel confident, comfortable and sexy. The dresses had a sheer slit showing a cheeky amount of skin with a veneer of mesh and a low back, I loved them. They were classic with an edge, which is my brands aesthetic. All the girls looked stunning.
BRIDESMAID’S SHOES: The girls all wore classic 3 strap nude heels.
JEWELRY/ ACCESSORIES: I wore my Mom's diamond earrings. The dress was quite busy so I didn’t want to over do it. I bought the bridesmaids Loli Bijoux pearl tassel earrings. We all loved them! They suited the girls and dresses perfectly.
GROOMSMEN ATTIRE: Broc and the boys wore classic tuxedo’s that were tailor made. We have a great tailor in Hong Kong that comes to Melbourne several times a year. The shoe’s were all patent black leather from Florsheim and cufflinks were Calibre.
HAIR: I had my hair down, blow dried in loose curls.
MAKEUP: We stuck to brown and bronze tones for my makeup as that suits my skin tone best. We kept it quite natural – I didn’t want to not look like myself on my wedding day. I was so happy. Suzzette does makeup for numerous fashion shows in Paris and she was great at listening to and understanding I wanted. No one does brows like her. The girls and I all wore the same shade of YSL lipstick, no. 218.
STATIONERY/INVITATIONS: We designed our invites with a good friend who has her own stationery business, Carded. We used thick card and letterpress for both. I loved the detail of having colour on the edges of our save the date. We were so happy with both designs. We kept them simple and classic.
FLOWERS & BOUQUETS: I chose white flowers with a lot of green foliage. They matched each room perfectly and set just the right tone.
PREPARATION: I woke up at 5:30am on my wedding day with a full red, painful rash all over my cheeks! When my bridesmaids arrived, Kamina who is a trained yoga instructor, led us in a meditation. It was my first time meditating and it was amazing. Rash gone! We got our hair done at the Capon salon and makeup done at my parents place. I gave the girls Jasmine and Will PJ’s as a present for us to all get ready in, as well as the earrings and thank you cards. I also gave my mom a ‘Mother of the Bride’ robe to match us. Then we ate and toasted champagne all day.
CAKE: We had a three tiered raspberry flavored white cake, dressed with some white and green flowers. They brought it out on a huge table with flaming candles.
WEDDING SONGS: I walked down the aisle to the Ingrid Michaelson version of ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’. It’s also my grandma’s favourite Elvis song and since she couldn’t make it to the wedding, it had extra meaning. We walked out of the church to ‘Ho Hey’ by the Lumineers. Our first dance was to ‘Sea of Love’ by Cat Power (the lyrics remind us of an inside joke we have).
ENTERTAINMENT: We had a jazz trio playing in the garden during the cocktail hours. After dinner we had a 6 person band till 12:30am and they were INCREDIBLE, the Nourith Orchestra. I couldn’t recommend them enough. Their DJ played until 2:00am and we danced all night long.
FOOD & BEVERAGES: After the ceremony we had a two hour cocktail party in the garden. For dinner, all the meals were pre ordered. In Europe it’s quite common to ask your guests what they want for entrée, main and dessert in the wedding invite. We had a three course dinner in what I call the ‘Blue Room’, my favourite room in the venue. We had 12 round tables full of all our favorite people and one long bridal table in the centre of the room.
TRANSPORT: Broc and I travelled in a 1957 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud. The bridal party were in Mercedes-benzes and we supplied shuttles for the guests to get to the venue from the church.
HONEYMOON: We decided to stay in Europe for our honeymoon. We went to my parents holiday house in the Loire Valley first for a few days with close friends and family. It was great to continue the celebrations with everyone. We ate, drank, played tennis and really relaxed. Broc and I were surprised with fireworks one night at the Chateau – it felt like something out of the movies. We were speechless. Next stop was London. We ate great food, shopped and went to see a play. Then onto the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Broc’s sister surprised us with a helicopter ride in Sorrento, which was an unforgettable experience. We hired a boat to go to Capri the next day and spent the day at La Fontelina Beach Club – a must if you’re ever in the area. We finished our honeymoon in Santorini where we finally got to switch off and do absolutely nothing. It was so romantic and beautiful there. We would highly recommend staying at Kapari Natural Resorts.
GIFT REGISTRY: We didn’t feel comfortable setting up a gift registry as a lot of our guests had to travel to Paris from international locations. Their travel and their company was enough of a present. One gift that we really cherish was from my girlfriend in the U.S. She painted the Eiffel Tower and beautiful evening sky over our wedding invitation and framed it. It was so thoughful and something we will keep forever. I loved it. All of our friends and family were so generous towards us and we are forever grateful.
CELEBRANT: Pastor Scott was the priest for our ceremony from The American Church in Paris. We really got to know him in the days leading up to the wedding and he understood what Broc and I really wanted for the ceremony. He was wonderful. We actually had a secret civil wedding ceremony in Melbourne before we left and our good friend Rachel Reed was our celebrant. I couldn’t recommend Rachel more – she knew Broc and I didn’t want to take too much away from the Paris wedding so she planned an intimate and short ceremony. It was beautiful.
SOURCES OF INSPIRATION: A lot of my inspiration from was The Lane and Pinterest.
A MEMORABLE MOMENT: The boys were getting ready in my parent’s granny flat downstairs and us girls were up in my Mom’s room. My Brother (a Groomsman) ran up and asked if he could steal a pair of my Stepdad's black socks… I asked him who they were for and he answered, “don’t worry about it”. I started laughing because I knew right away…that’s my Broc! All the speeches at our wedding were also so memorable. They were touching, meaningful and hilarious. It reminded us how lucky we are to have such incredible people in our lives. Oh, and the next morning we had a noise complaint from President Francois Hollande. That’s how you know it was a good night.
IF I COULD GIVE OTHER BRIDES TO BE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE… Things go wrong – none of it matters. You need to let go. I did and I had the best night of my life.
Try and stretch out the celebrations for a few days. I’m so happy we did. It felt like a week long wedding instead of it all being over after one day.
It’s impossible to spend quality time with everyone, your guests will understand.
AMBER & BROC'S CONTACTS:
PHOTOGRAPHY: Lelia Scarfiotti
BRIDE'S DRESS: amber chloe
BRIDE’S SHOES: Stuart Weitzman
BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: amber chloe
WEDDING RINGS: Tiffany
JEWELRY & ACCESSORIES: Loli Bijoux
HAIR: Jean Luc Capon, Capon
MAKEUP: Suzette Riego
FLORIST: Le Jardin D’Antoine
CELEBRANT: Rachel Reed Celebrant
WEDDING VENUE: Cercle de l'Union Interalliée
ENTERTAINMENT: Nourith Orchestre
VIDEOGRAPHER: Zen Filmworks
OTHER: PJ’s Jasmine and Will