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Kim & Karl

— Chic Garden Wedding


6 December 2014


250 people


Joseph Willis

Kim & Karl by Joseph Willis
Kim & Karl by Joseph Willis

Referencing the chic and the simplistic, Kim & Karl’s Melbourne wedding inspires the refinement of city celebrations, timeless in their beauty and infinitely elegant in their style. All dreamy whites, garden ceremonials and a lavish cocktail reception, it’s classic and chic. It’s effortless and understated.

Told by LANE handpicked photographer Joey Willis with his artistic eye for fashion details, these are the frames that tell a story rich in layers and textures, beautiful compositions, almost editorial in nature.

HOW WE MET:  We met briefly through mutual friends four years ago, but never really had an actual conversation until two years ago when we sat next to each other at a friends dinner. Quite quickly the dynamics changed from a group dinner to an amazing dinner date for two and we’ve been together ever since! 

OUR ENGAGEMENT STORY: Karl proposed on a bridge over the river in Brunswick Heads, about 15 minutes north of Byron Bay. He gave a little speech about the past, the present and the future and then popped the question.

MARRIAGE TO US MEANS: It’s cemented a commitment we already had for each other in front of everyone who makes our life together that little bit better.

WEDDING LOCATIONOur ceremony was at the Pioneer Women's Memorial Garden in Kings Domain. It's a beautiful sunken garden that feels a little bit secluded, which is why I liked it. A good friend, Jacy, made us an amazing wooden platform to stand on over the water which meant we could make use of the amazing ivy backdrop. Our reception was at The Deck at The Prince in St Kilda which was an easy choice. I'd been there for events before so I knew the venue and food was amazing. Our contact Matthew was so easy to deal with. We were more than happy with both of our location choices. 

THEME/STYLE: Modern and chic – an all white garden ceremony and a colourful reception with the use of gold and the shape of a diamond throughout the styling.

PHOTOGRAPHY: I found Joey Willis on The Lane and he was a huge win. I work in photography so was extremely picky about the style I wanted and Joey was it and a bit. He’s got an amazing nature about him and could flip from being invisible to feeling like a loved guest at the wedding.

BRIDE’S DRESSCraig Braybrook custom designed my dress by combining elements from references of a few dresses that I really liked. I wanted it to look light, with straps, a low back and front, and intricate detailing with an element of sheerness. I searched high and wide, but couldn't find the fabric I wanted in Melbourne. Eventually I found the perfect beaded embroidered tulle at Saigon Fabrics in Sydney. Once I found that Craig whipped it together really quickly and I loved the end result. 

BRIDES SHOES: As the dress was quite detailed I chose a really simple nude heel with a thin toe strap by Tony Bianco

BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: Dressing seven bridesmaids was always going to be hard! Originally I wanted to find a different dress for each of the girls that sat within a look, but I couldn’t find seven that I was happy with. In the end we found a black silk dress from Zimmermann that looked amazing on each of the girls. 

BRIDESMAIDS SHOES:I loved the bridesmaids strappy black and gold Zara heels. We discovered during the night that they weren’t super comfy.. ouch.. but they did look good! 

WEDDING RINGS: My engagement ring is vintage, it’s Karl’s grandmothers from the 1930’s. For our wedding rings I picked a band of brilliant cut claw set diamonds and Karl picked an amazing platinum band with rose gold on the underside.

JEWELLERY/ACCESSORIES: I kept it simple with a pair of drop earrings from Fletcher and Grace. The bridesmaids wore black and gold Witchery earrings and the groomsmen had Hugo Boss cufflinks.

GROOMSMEN ATTIREKarl organised black suits from Woodstock Menswear for the groomsmen. He was looking dapper in a custom made tuxedo by Tom James.

HAIRI left it until the final fitting, the day before the wedding, to make a decision on my hair. I originally liked the idea of an up do, but the dress definitely suited hair down. I chose a relaxed wave with a side part.

MAKEUPI’ve produced photo shoots previously with Darren, my hair and make up artist, so I knew he was great at what he does. I find it hard picking make up references as you’re looking at someone else’s face and skin tone so I just left it to him really and went for a fairly natural look.

STATIONERY/INVITATIONSA friend from work, Dino, helped to pull something together that was clean and modern from the hundreds of references I found on the net. We incorporated the diamond shape into the design and then I gold foiled each invite myself buying gold foil from the US and using a laminator at home. Each invite was printed on white textured card with black card sandwiched between a white card backing. Fifteen invites into the glueing I realised it was going to take me forever and do my head in so luckily I found a company that did it for me – faster and neater.

FLOWERS & BOUQUETS:  Angie from Flower Jar did an amazing job with the flowers for the ceremony and reception. As the ceremony was in a garden in front of a beautiful ivy backdrop we didn’t need to use a lot and we kept it all white and cream. The reception transitioned into a beautiful mix of purple, red, pink, yellow, and orange flowers for more of a party feel. Tessa Rae made our beautiful bouquets with cream David Austen roses.

VIDEOGRAPHY: We weren’t going to have a videographer but our fourteen year old nephew Ethan ended up jumping in and doing the job. He captured the ceremony, entrance and speeches and it was so much fun to watch it back. It was made with love!

PREPARATION: I loved the morning of the wedding. You would think having seven bridesmaids would be hectic, but it was quite the opposite, it was fun and relaxing. I feel like I got more out of the day by having so many of my nearest and dearest with me for so much of it. The girls got ready with my family at my Aunty Ruth's who knows how to put on an amazing spread so it was champagne breakfast and giggles all morning. Karl had heaps of fun getting ready with his groomsmen and watching home made videos from when they were teenagers.

CEREMONY DÉCOR/ RECEPTION DÉCORWe hired all our ceremony furniture through Place Settings and kept everything white, apart from the wooden platform and wooden easle that held our welcome sign. The reserved seat name tags were gold foiled as was the welcome sign which was draped in white flowers.

The reception venue is amazing on it's own so we just added a few things to give it more pop. I hired festoon lights and two gold diamond shaped pendants from Dann Event Hire to hang in the outdoor marquee that the florist attached flowers to. One of Karl's best friends Shane made us giant polystyrene letters to place in the indoor pool (K&K) which the florist also draped flowers over. They looked amazing and were a great entry focal point. 

CAKEOne of my bridesmaids,Vic, is an amazing cake maker so she made us a two tiered, six layer chocolate mud cake covered in chocolate ganache and white chocolate icing. The florist then popped fresh flowers on top.

Ceremony: Beyonce – ‘Halo’
Signing: The Paper Kites – ‘Bloom’
Recessional: Lauryn Hill – ‘Can’t Take My Eyes off You’
Entrance Song: Eight different daggy love songs - one for each bridal party couple which was very funny.
First Dance: Crowded House – ‘Fall At Your Feet’

ENTERTAINMENTWe had an acoustic duo called Connotations play at the ceremony. They were super easy to deal with as well as nailing each song. A close friend of ours Brendan was the DJ for the reception. We gave him a list of about ten songs we liked and he built an amazing playlist around that which kept the dancefloor pumping – requirement number one for a good wedding!

FOOD & BEVERAGESWe had a cocktail reception with canapes and roving bowls of food. The food was amazing and the round of espresso martini’s at 10pm went down well!

TRANSPORT: We had two matching black Chrysler limousines from Enrik Limousines.

HONEYMOON: Bali – so amazing and so relaxing, exactly what we needed. I think we prettty much ate and swam, ate and swam, ate and swam…

CELEBRANTOur celebrant, Erin Oliver, was brilliant. She’s a friend from high school so I already knew what she was like -  funny, warm and relatable, which is exactly what we wanted. We decided to go without readings and let her words be the focus for the 20 minute ceremony.

SOURCES OF INSPIRATION: The Lane, Pinterest & Georgeous Occasions were my top three but I flipped through a lot of magazines and spent a lot of time online.

A MEMORABLE MOMENT: I was overwhelmed with how loud the guests cheered as each bridal party couple was introduced. It was special watching the couples head out, arm in arm to such an amazing response. I'll never forget walking out with Karl and seeing everyone I loved in one place and so happy for us. It was amazing… and deafening.

ONE THING I WISH I KNEW BEFORE I STARTED MY WEDDING PLANS…If you’re like me you’ll get excited and try to cover off each aspect of the wedding at the same time. I would say try and prioritise. Focus on each element in order of deadline.

IF I COULD GIVE OTHER BRIDES TO BE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE…Veils don’t hold well when you're wearing your hair out! Mine went flying just as I started to walk down the aisle. It was quite funny and calmed my nerves, but if I knew they were that flimsy I would have made sure to secure it properly.


BRIDE'S DRESS: Craig Braybrook
EDDING RINGS: Renato Jewellers
HAIRDarren Cartledge 
MAKEUPDarren Cartledge 
FLORISTFlower Jar / Tessa Rae
 The Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden  / The Deck at The Prince
CELEBRANT: Erin Oliver
TRANSPORT: Enrik Limousines

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