Tuesday, December 3, 2013


Remember I said I wouldn't be blogging about the wedding day until I had the official photographs back? Well, I changed my mind. I remember when I was first planning the big day and had bought a massive pile of bridal magazines only to find that there was nothing in them that really inspired me. Pinterest ended up coming to the rescue for me but I figured if there was anyone out there who might be struggling with finding the right suppliers for their own Sydney wedding, then perhaps a blog post from a fellow bride might help in some small way. Out of anxiety that I'd be leaving things too late, I very quickly locked in my suppliers without having done a lot of research. I wasn't disappointed with my choices but in the months leading up to (and even after) my own wedding I discovered a whole number of excellent suppliers whom I would gladly enlist the help of if I was planning another big event. So without further adieu, here's some details from my wedding day:

If you're an ex-Loreto student, you'll know that you are very welcome to use the Chapel at Kirribilli for your big day. I didn't actually attend the Kirribilli school but because I had attended Loreto in Coorparoo and the venue was available when I enquired, they let us marry there. Father Ed Dooley was our celebrant. You'd be hard pressed to find someone as engaging and lovely as he was. I loved our service and he had such a big part in that for me. The grounds outside (with stunning water views) were far too beautiful not to enjoy on the day, so we hired a waiter through Sweet Art who provided a champagne and beer service in the gardens after the ceremony.

Music: Church
We had a string quartet playing in both the church and in the grounds after the service while drinks were being served. The talented Opus 4 played beautifully on the day and wowed us with their repertoire. We had a mixture of classical and pop tunes and they absolutely nailed it. I would recommend them for any occasion in a heartbeat. Honourable mentions also go to Accent Strings, another talented quartet. In case you need any help choosing music for the church, here's what I had. All strings, of course:

Bridal Processional: Mascagni's Cavalleria Rusticana - Intermezzo (After Rachel had walked in, I walked in at about the 1.37 mark. Highly emotional) 
Signing of the Register: What a Wonderful World
Exit: Love is in the Air

Music: Cocktail Hour and Reception
We had a DJ for pre-reception cocktails and canapes and during the reception itself. In my opinion, there's only one name you need to know when it comes to finding a DJ in Sydney: Brett Martin. He was awesome. Sharply dressed, highly intuitive about the crowd he's got to please and an all-round good guy! Pre-reception was a chilled Cafe Del Mar vibe, and the reception brief was plenty of Disco and Motown. Here's some of the most important songs from the night - prepare for tears!

Father-Daughter Dance: Your Childhood by The Proclaimers 

As a gift to our guests, we had the talented Kumar at the reception to draw caricatures of them to take home. Our friends and family absolutely loved it!

Blumenthal has an outstanding reputation for Wedding Photography. I was very lucky to have them document our big day and I can't wait to see the final images. We fell in love with our photographer, James who brought not only his super talent, but an incredible personality and fantastic sense of humour to the day. I can't stress how awesome that is when you're trudging through a forest in high heels with mosquitoes flying INSIDE your dress which weighs a tonne! It was a joy to work with him. I have also mentioned before the amazing Gui Jorge photography. I just love their work and I know you will too!

I actually found Untitled Film Works through an ad on facebook (the power of social media marketing!) I sent James a copy of a video they had done and he gave them a big thumbs up too. I could actually cry when I think about how lovely the boys were on the day. Again, we don't have our video back yet but from their previous work and my experience with them, I'm recommending them to you. Honourable mentions also go to Soda Films who Blumenthal recommend and work closely with.

As we were planning a very intimate wedding, The Guest House at The Park Hyatt was the perfect location for our reception. Overlooking the Opera House and with a lovely outdoor area to really take in the view, there is simply no comparison for me when it comes to venue. Our events personnel, Belinda and Chloe were the most professional, accommodating and warm people. When I had first enquired about the venue, the first thing they did was congratulate me and ask me about the proposal! I had actually called other venues outside of Sydney (at first I wanted a Hunter Valley wedding) and I was made to feel like my phone call was an inconvenience for them. E-mails were left unanswered and I figured that if I were to enlist their services, I'd end up pulling my hair out with anxiety! I'm so glad I decided to hold the reception at the Hyatt. The girls were there, every step of the way, fine tuning and making sure the whole thing ran smoothly. They were always a few steps ahead of us, so there was never a chance of any detail being forgotten. The food and drink is what you'd expect of a 5-star restaurant and wait staff were just as professional and accommodating as our events staff. I could go on for days about them, as you can tell! The Hyatt also has a larger reception room, if a bigger wedding is on the cards for you.

When you've never worn a wedding dress before, you'd be forgiven for thinking the first dress you try on is The One. Everyone looks good in a wedding gown, after all! I didn't expect to wear Vera Wang on the day, but the moment I tried on the Hilary gown, all those lovely dresses I had tried on, I suddenly knew were not for me. There was just no comparison at all for me. I ordered two bows, one in ivory and one in black, and wore the black one for the reception, to mix things up a bit. It is such a shame that you only get to wear your wedding dress once because if I had it my way, I'd be wearing it all the time! A friend of mine said that when I come back to our hometown to visit, we should plan a picnic so we get to wear our gowns again. I am seriously contemplating this!

The boys wore custom suits from Montagio. The man who runs the company used to work in the corporate world himself and wasn't pleased with the standards of custom suiting in Sydney. So he started his own business and honest-to-goodness, I'm so glad he did. James also had some work suits made which says A LOT because he is so loyal to only a couple of brands and almost never mixes things up when he's found something he likes. Now I know he probably won't go anywhere else. And, from my perspective, James never wore a suit better!

Lizzie Liros. For bridal hair, she's the only name you really need to know. She's an industry great and has the accolades to prove it. She books out really far in advance so I count myself incredibly lucky to have managed to "snag" her due to another bride cancelling. Any style you want, she can do it. I'd recommend letting her give her own twist on things because she truly knows best! Rachel wore her hair down in vintage style waves and, as you can tell from the other photos, I wore mine up.

Have you heard of MUDU? If you haven't yet, you will soon! She's favoured by instagram sensation Sydney Fashion Blogger and her career is well and truly on the rise. I have a hard time trusting makeup artists with my face, but Melanie made me look more beautiful than I could ever have dreamed. Check out her toolkit! Another star in the makeup world (particularly for brides) is Ann Hassarati. Check out her facebook page here.

For the shoes, I went with Choos! They were my very first pair of proper designer duds and they didn't disappoint. The Lang style has to be the most beautiful shoe I have ever seen or had the pleasure of walking in. I normally get blisters from every pair of shoes I wear, but not in these - I didn't even notice they were on. It was meant to be! The best part is, they'll make a wonderful wardrobe staple and I can't wait to wear them again!
Colette Hayman does wonderful and very cost-effective bags, wallets and clutches. I bought mine a couple of days before the wedding to hold my lipstick, perfume, powder and blush for touch ups. 
As I'm not a big jewellery wearer, I didn't feel the need to fork out, so costume jewels did the trick for me! I made up my mind at the last minute to wear the dangly ones as opposed to the studs. They are from Gregory Lardner at Myer and were cheap as chips.
For our fragrances, James and I both wore D&G The One. His was the men's, mine the women's version. Both scents are incredible and I think the name was a cute touch.

Flowers/Invitations/Order of Service/Cake/Cars/Coach/Drinks Service
Sweet Art did a fantastic job on all of the above. The brief was to keep it simple - I really only wanted ivory everything! Some say the invitation is what gives guests an idea of what to expect on the day and I think ours were absolutely spot-on. Simple, classic and elegant. As for the cake, it matched my dress and flowers perfectly. It tasted fantastic too - we chose white chocolate and chocolate mudcake and carrot cake (my favourite) tiers. Though I loved the flowers, I have since discovered a whole number of fantastic florists in Sydney whose services I can't wait to enlist. TulipannaMr. Cook and Grandiflora are three names that I would definitely recommend to anyone who wants perfect, inspired arrangements for an event. We also arranged our cars, coach service for guests and, as mentioned before, the drinks service after the church through Sweet Art's event service.

Vera Wang use Sew Special for their alterations and since meeting the owner, Joanna, I now know there will be no other tailor for me! She altered mine and my sister's dress perfectly and was also one of the loveliest people I'll ever have the privilege of meeting. She's the number one choice for celebrities who need a nip/tuck clothing-wise but she's as humble as the days are long. Look her up, she's a genius.

Bridesmaid Dress
I don't like the usual floaty, chiffon bridesmaid dresses you often see. I fell in love with the 'Amaze' dress from Sheike the moment I laid eyes on it. It was similar in shape to my wedding dress and I knew that no-one would wear it as well as my sister. It wasn't expensive, but Rachel made it look a million bucks!

Tan and Nails
Anyone who has ever worked or interned at ACP will know that Ciao Bella is on every fashion or beauty editor's speed dial when it comes to spray tans. When Rachel lived with me in Sydney, they were the only people we'd let near our skin with a spray gun! We chose St Tropez as our tanning product and had OPI 'Sweet Memories' as our nail colour.

... I think that's about it! If you are planning an event yourself, I hope you find it helpful. Let me know if there's anything I've missed!

1 comment:

  1. Hello Anna. What a beautiful bride! So glad you are happy.
    Wonder if you remember me!


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