Benay and Peter’s Stradbroke Island Wedding

by | Australia - Queensland, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Benay and Peter

Oh I do love a wedding by the water, especially one like today’s where the sunshine isn’t out but the moody clouds make for a romantic atmosphere. Benay and Peter married on South Stradbroke Island and had the most beautiful waterside wedding. It’s got a serenity to it that eases us into a crazy week.

Benay explains their love story. “We met through my sister.  She always spoke of this ‘hot computer guy’ that one of her friends worked with. They used to hope that one of their computers would break so he would come around and fix it.  Pete went to my sister’s house one day and saw a photograph of my sister and I and asked who I was, I was living overseas at the time but when I came home Pete and I met in passing one day.  Pete then called my sister to ask if it was OK to email me and ask me out.  It was the first time I’d ever been asked out via email!”

Today’s photographs (making her Polka Dot debut, hooray!) are by Sheila Higgins. I love the calm nature Sheila has to her work. It’s modern and stylish but keeps the classic elements of wedding photography that we all know and love.

Blush Artistry styled the girls hair and makeup. Benay says “I just loved our hair and makeup and the ladies here were so lovely and really knew what they were doing.”

Benay wore a gown by Leonard Derecourt with stylish peeptoes from Novo. Her bridesmaids wore watermelon coloured strapless gowns from Bari Jay from Hills In Hollywood.

Guests traveled to the island by boat, including the groom and his groomsmen who arrived on the ‘September Song’. Benay remembers it as one of her favourite memories. “The boys traveling to the wedding on the ‘September Song’. Boating is a big part of Pete’s family and it was so nice to be able to include the September Song in our wedding day, not to mention it is the most beautiful boat and was a fantastic backdrop for our photos.”

Benay walked down the aisle to ‘Sea Of Love’ by Cat Power.

Benay and Peter held their ceremony at As Island Hideaway, South Stradbroke Island and had it conducted by celebrant Diane Rainnie.  Benay recalls “Our ceremony was in the beach side chapel which was the reason I liked this venue.  It was nice to be right beside the beach but not on the beach which worked out well on our wedding day because there was a little bit of rain around.

Our Star Wars Vows I think this was my favourite part.  We kept this a secret from everyone and everyone laughed and cheered when they heard them knowing how much of a fan Pete is of Star Wars.”

Peter pledged “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away I was drawn to you like The Millenium Falcon caught in The Death Stars tractor beam. Whether it be Tusken Raiders or Imperial Forces, nothing can break The Force that joins us together. I would never trade you to the Jawas even if they were doing a really good deal on a couple of astromech droids, even with an extended warranty.” I can tell you there were some great big smiles and lots of joyous peals of laughter. Benay’s response included this little gem “Even if you were frozen in carbonite, and stolen by Boba Fett, I would find you, dress in a gold bikini slave outfit, then strangle Jabba the Hutt to be by your side. I would follow you through the desert wastelands of Tatooine, the Ice fields of Hoth, and the Jungles of Endor, just to be with you.”


Guests continued to celebrate with a reception on the island.

Peter and Benay made the invitations themselves. “We made our invitations which were DVD’s.  The DVD was a kind of slideshow of photographs of us made into Polaroids with details of the wedding written under each photograph.  I made the images in Photoshop and Pete put it all together with music for the DVD’s.”

Benay also made clear boxes filled with Skittles for guests (one of Pete’s favourite treats) and made place cards for each guest. She explains “The images on the place cards were all photographs that I had taken from around the world where Pete and I had travelled.  I had a lot of fun selecting the images I would use and made sure no two place cards had the same image.  On the back of the place cards I had another image (the same image on all place cards) with the quote “love isn’t the person you can see yourself with, it’s the person you can’t see yourself without” I did this because I wondered how many people would look at the back of the place cards and the ones who did I wanted them to see something nice.”

On top of their wedding cake was another nod to Peter’s love of Star Wars. Benay recalls “We loved The Han Solo and Princes Leia cake toppers, I thought these were a cute and subtle way to include another Star Wars reference into our wedding.”

Hiring band Nuthin Betta, for their first dance Benay remarks, “We danced to ‘Hold You in My Arms’ by Ray LaMontagne.  We have quite different taste in music so it took a while to find a song but Pete being the wonderful man that he is let me give him a heap of songs that I liked and then he chose one that he liked from that.”


Congratulations Benay and Peter! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us on Polka Dot Bride! Thank you also to Sheila Higgins. for sharing today’s photographs!

Photos by Sheila Higgins.


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  • Featured on Polka Dot Bride » says:
    September 6, 2011 at 5:47 pm

    […] Today I’m super excited to share that Benay and Peters wedding I photographed at Stradbroke Island has just been featured on Polka Dot Bride! For those of […]

  • Leah says:
    September 6, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    These photos are just gorgeous – makes me want to get married again 🙂

  • Rebecca says:
    September 7, 2011 at 11:22 am

    I WANT to see close up photos of Benay’s hair. Lovely!

    • Polka Dot Bride says:
      September 26, 2011 at 3:14 pm

      Rebecca- it’s gorgeous isn’t it! Will do a post of sleek up-dos soon and make sure to include a bigger photo!

  • Wedding Hair Inspiration – Sleek And Stylish Up Do’s | Polka Dot Bride says:
    September 29, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    […] and Ben’s Wedding Photo by Nerida McMurrayEmma and Nick’s Wedding Photo by Lana Bell Benay and Peter’s Wedding Photo by Sheila Higgins Vanessa and Chris’ Wedding Photo by Kit HaseldenNicola and […]



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