By Louise Baltruschat Hollis
Take a moment to settle in, as I really think you’re going to adore this fresh and simple wedding brimming with love and happiness.
Paul and Elizabeth were married in midsummer in a legal ceremony the day before holding their wedding ceremony and celebrations in a back garden, complete with a stunning marquee. With a relaxed country garden vibe, their day was just blissful and serene, which really matched the spectacular surroundings too. They went for clean lines and a modern feel, yet added an array of colourful blooms for an injection of personality. They also had several nods to their love of travel in the details and décor, which was a really lovely touch.
Elizabeth’s gown was a real show stopper don’t you think? The high neckline is so chic and I love her elegant wedges, not only practical but super gorgeous too! Paul went for a classic navy suit, which looked really timeless and sharp. Oh and be sure to keep your eyes peeled for one of the most amazing dessert tables ever!
Huge thanks goes to Helen Cawte Photography for sharing these remarkably beautiful images today.
THE PROPOSAL | The proposal was over our favourite bottle of champagne (Don Ruinart 1998) at the beautiful Lake House in Daylesford near Melbourne, on a weekend away. Paul had a delicious Tapas-style dinner sent to the cottage and we had an incredible fun and romantic night.
THE VISION | English country garden. Relaxed, colourful, and simple.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | Quite tough! We had moved to Australia the year before so organising the wedding was a little challenging, but, thanks to email and some very helpful family members, we got there.
THE VENUE | We had the legal ceremony at the stunning Weald and Downland Museum the day before our official wedding day. It was attended just by our immediate family and bridal party, followed by an incredible lunch catered by the Mother of the Bride!
This allowed us to be more flexible on the location for our wedding ceremony and we chose to get married in a small sea-side village called Itchenor in a marquee in my Grandma’s back garden. It was lovely to be able to walk to the water for photos and have a drink in the local pub before the ceremony.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | The dress was by an Australian designer called Rachel Gilbert, I wore earrings given to me by my grandmother, and Paul gave me a beautiful necklace on the morning of the wedding to match.
FINDING THE DRESS | I was looking for a simple, elegant dress (without train or veil) and after an extensive shop in the UK and Aus, I found my dream dress at David Jones (a Selfridges-style department store in Australia) – they had an excellent collection of dresses of all different styles.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Paul wanted a smart suit that he could wear again and opted for a gorgeous blue Armani suit.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | For the readings we asked a friend, Emily, and Paul’s sister, Sarah, to do readings of their choice. It was great to have the surprise on the day. Emily chose “Wedding Vow” by Wendy Cope, and Sarah chose “Oh the places you’ll go” by Dr Seuss.
The Jazz duo, Paris Swing played the music for the ceremony and the reception, and the 7 piece DeLoreans Motown band played after dinner.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | Laura wore a bright pink summer dress from Oasis. On the week of the wedding we ordered 10 different dresses for Laura to try on and she picked her favourite the morning of the wedding.
THE FLOWERS | Provided by Driftwood Flowers. The idea was seasonal, local, and colourful – and completely the florists choice and design. All the greenery in the marquee was actually from Sarah’s (florist) garden!
THE CAKE | Instead of 1 cake we had 80 beautiful cupcakes, which were generously made by our friend Mel.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | The amazing Helen Cawte. Helen absolutely understood what we wanted – natural shots as the day progressed. She made everyone feel comfortable and we are so happy with the pictures. It was also so wonderful to take a walk after the ceremony and have pictures by the harbour and a few minutes to take it all in.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | For the lunch after the legal-ceremony we had salt and pepper in shells collected from an Australian beach, everyone had their own personised mug for coffee, and Mum had personally hand-sewn the bunting decoration.
On our official wedding day we had a gin display/bar with gins from all the places we have lived (London, Yorkshire, Switzerland, America, Australia and our bespoke gin from Cambridge).
The favour for everyone was an individualised postcard of a place which reminded us of that person and the written story on the back.
We love our wine and Paul wrote a full (comedic) tasting note for each bottle and had it printed in the menu!
THE HONEYMOON | 3 days in Singapore, then back to Australia for 2 days camping in Litchfield National Park, and 3 days in an Eco Lodge in Kakadu National Park.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | We loved every bit. Skipping through the grounds of Weald Downland museum after our legal ceremony. On our official wedding day, our friend Clare conducting the most beautiful ceremony, reading our the vows we had written together, having to duck under the tree in the marquee when walking up the aisle, and the beautiful speeches
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Once you are ready to make your guest list, settle down for the night with your favourite bottle of wine and write it a little tipsy – those are the people you really want there! Also, ensure you have a few moments just you two together, take it all in and enjoy the magic
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photography | Helen Cawte Photography
Flowers | Driftwood Flowers
Marquee | Lewis Marquee
Catering | Kalm Caterers
Music | The DeLoreans
Civil ceremony venue | Wealddown
How very lovely.
Thanks to much to Paul and Elizabeth for sharing their utterly splendid nuptials with us xo Lou
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