When the initial email from Celeste at Tourism and Events Queensland came into The Blogcademy inbox asking us if we’d consider an all-expenses paid trip to Queensland I nearly deleted it, assuming it must be spam. I mean, this kind of opportunity doesn’t exactly come knocking on your door everyday. After verifying that Celeste wasn’t, in fact, just playing a rather cruel prank, we started to plan our epic adventure down under!
Skip forward eight months or so and we were finally there. Celeste and her team had pulled out all the stops and scheduled an action packed five days for us including koala cuddles, surf lessons, boutique hotels and snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef! I’m so excited to share some of my highlights with you guys over the next few weeks. This new Honeymoon Travel Guide feature of mine is working out quite nicely don’t you think?
Queensland isn’t somewhere I’d ever really considered visiting before, but after this trip I can say with the utmost sincerity that I will be going back, only next time I’m bringing Gareth with me – this tropical paradise is just made for lovers!
I’m pretty sure there is no couple in the world that could possibly come close to being as awesome as Ainsley and Sebastien. This is one of those engagement shoots that as soon as I saw it I was dying to see the wedding already, wondering what they could possibly do to top these photos.
Shot by the incredible Janneke Storm (she’s shooting The Blogcademy: Brisbane in November! I can’t wait to meet her!) who takes her inspiration from fashion photography, this is an engagement shoot to end all engagement shoots. Why? Because Sebastien actually proposed during the session!
Nree and Adrian were married on a Friday afternoon in February. Their farm venue set the tone and theme for the day, which they accessorised with homemade yellow details. “Our wedding was summery, relaxed, vintage and handmade”, wrote the bride. “Our main objective was to keep the cost down! So styling and hand making everything was a top priority (also something that I LOVED doing). We wanted to be super relaxed and for our guest feeling relaxed on our special day, so having the wedding at Gum Gully was perfect. The sun was shining, the birds were signing and all we could smell was that sweet country air.”
“In terms of styling we wanted a handmade and vintage feel so we used things like fabric bunting, lace table clothes, jam jars for drinking glasses and old pickle bottles for vases. We enjoyed using materials such as hessian and twine to decorate almost everything in sight! We also got to play with animals all morning on the farm, feeding little baby goats, deer, chickens and cows. How much more relaxing does it get!?”
Ben and Kate were married in August at Flaxton Gardens, Queensland, Australia. They wanted a romantic wedding but one that was a little bit different, to reflect their personalties. ” I struggled to begin with to decide what to do and how to do it”, began the bride. “I read a lot of magazines and blogs but it wasn’t until I found Rock n Roll Bride that I realised that it really didn’t matter what everyone else was doing, we should do what represents us best. So we did what made us happy, didn’t worry about tradition so much and did things that weren’t so ‘wedding’. I kept my hair short (I always thought I’d grow it), I kept it coloured (blue) and we wrote our own vows that made everyone laugh as they really reflected us.”
“We named our tables after cities we visited on the trip where Ben proposed. As it happened in New York, we used apples to hold our menus to represent the ‘Big Apple’ and our seating plan was inspired by a vintage map. We also had a local artist draw a picture of us to use as our guest book, guests signed red dots that we attached after to create a big bunch of balloons. I dyed doilies black and used them to create centrepieces. I used big round ones for our round guest tables and stitched a whole heap together to make a long table runner for the bridal table. We placed the black doilies over plain tan burlap and they looked beautiful!”
You know when you meet someone and you can instantly tell that they’re your kind of person? You talk non-stop about everything and anything and five hours later you wonder where all the time went? Well that was exactly what happened to me when I met up with photographer Lakshal Perera last week. Based in Australia, Lucky (as he’s known to his friends) is without a doubt one of the biggest talents coming out of Oz right now. His work never fails to blow me away and the fact that he’s literally one of the nicest people I’ve ever met makes his talent even more exciting to me.
Anyway, enough gushing, onto the wedding in hand..!
Kylie and Greg were married in Victoria. Their ceremony was held at Westgarth Theatre, and their reception at Normanby House, a fully restored house originally built in the 1900s. “The wedding began with our ceremony at an art deco theatre where we have been on many hot dates”, began the bride. “It was local, it was out of the ordinary, it was a beautiful setting, and the venue said yes!”
“Once guests were seated in the theatre, a stop motion video played on the big screen telling our 10 year story. We thought we would have some fun with the ceremony rather than bore people with the facts of our relationship that already knew. Barb, our celebrant, did a stellar job of convincing some guests that we did in fact meet on a speed dating night, and Greg won me a meat tray on our second date. These embellished facts made for an unexpected, hilarious ceremony, setting the mood for the day.”
With a bit of Sargent Pepper, a dash of class and a touch of retro, Samantha and James planned their Rock n Roll wedding for February this year. The day started out at Melbourne Zoo for the ceremony and concluded at Half Moon, a restaurant in Brighton, Victoria.
“James had been married before so all we wanted from the day was for it to reflect us, for everyone to have some yummy food and drinks and dance all night”, Samantha explained. “It wasn’t a traditional wedding – which was important to us. We both have such a strong love of life and having fun so we selected things that would keep our guests smiling. Both of James’ parents have passed away and my father had passed too, it was important to make the day a happy one and show everyone how important it is to make the most of everyday and laugh and smile.”