Budget-Friendly Backyard Wedding with a Fairy Princess Bride

Nikola Janev Photography

September 26, 2019

Leah and Josh met at university and became friend over a mutual love of video games, animation and music. Leah developed a crush first and decided to tell Josh her feelings before running off to her train home one summer. She even sealed the deal by grabbing him by the hoody and stealing a kiss. Eleven years later to the day, they got married!

Inspired by their personal aesthetics – purples and pinks for Leah, and monochrome for Josh – and a desire to save on the wedding and splurge on the honeymoon, the couple wanted a day that they could celebrate each other. They hosted an intimate ceremony and pot-luck dinner in their own back garden, and then got all their friends together the following night at their favourite bar to continues the festivities.

With a budget of around $5000 AUD they were determined just to focus their finances on the thing that mattered most to them – the photography. “We are both creative people,” said Leah, “who have great respect for good photography and understand that its an expensive craft for a reason. We don’t like having our photo taken, so being comfortable with a photographer was really important to us.” 

They saved on dinner by asking their family to each bring a dish to dinner which meant what’s usually a big spender had a non-existent cost, and tasted amazing to boot! For decor, they spent hours folding origami paper cranes, that they also folded their vows into to be tucked into the backdrop for their ceremony.

“Our vows meant the most to us and we both wrote them on origami paper so they could be stored alongside the origami cranes that draped behind us. During the ceremony, we had a playlist of beautiful piano covers from our favourite video games playing in the background. Hearing those, helped us focus on one another and made it all the more special. Nothing like telling your soul mate how much you love them to the tune of Aerith’s Theme from Final Fantasy 7…”

Leah’s vibe for the day was to look more like a fairy princess than a bride. She wore a two-piece skirt and top by Camilla with Irregular Choice shoes. “My hair, dress-sense and look is very colourful normally, but pulling everything together made me feel more like a fairy-princess than a traditional bride, which I loved. You have to feel like yourself on your wedding day – not some strange, apparently wedding-appropriate version of you!”

In retrospect, the couple would’ve really liked to elope, but understood that a wedding is sometimes so much more than just what the two of you want. “Sometimes, we do these things for other people (like having a wedding when really you want to elope) and thats okay. There is nothing wrong with that. Just make it how you want it. Be considerate of their feelings but still put your needs first. Do what you need to and remember the most important part is that after it all, you finally get to be married to the love of your life.”