Sally and Garnett’s Beautiful Backyard Wedding

by | Australia - Queensland, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Sally & Garnett

I honestly have the most delightful backyard Brisbane wedding for you today. It just has this utter sweetness to it that is beautiful to watch as the story unfolds.

Sally tells their story. “Garnett and I had actually been friends for almost 9 years before we started dating.  We both met in first year university at the University of Queensland.  We then studied Veterinary science together for 5 years.  We were both in a very close friendship group throughout university and continued to keep in touch a few times a year after that finished.  I then went on to study Medicine and finally started dating Garnett towards the end of this degree.  It was a surprisingly easy transition from friendship to a relationship.

Nobody was surprised that we had started dating.  The response we usually got was ‘about time’.”

Unfortunately we had been dating for 24hrs before Garnett got offered a deployment to East Timor with the Army, (he is in the Army reserve).  He said yes, and as a result we spent one month together before he went overseas for 6 months.  We kept in touch over the phone and via Skype. I took my first job in Cairns, so we moved up here together.  We have now bought a house and plan on staying up here for the next few years at least.  As a result the whole wedding was organised over the phone! Thank goodness for picture messages! He proposed on Christmas Day with a ring that he had specially designed with a Jeweller in Rockhampton that had been recommended to him by a friend of his.  I really love my ring, it’s quite unique.

On their wedding night, Sally’s sister Gillian made the following speech. ” They found each other after a long friendship together. Everybody saw it coming”.

Sally’s feelings for Garnett took a sharp turn and in the words of Sally’s favourite Jane Austin novel…. “She began now to comprehend that he was exactly the man, who, in disposition and talents, would most suit her.””

Photos today are by Natalie McComas who has such a sweet elegance to her photographs.

Sally and Garnett were married at Garnett’s family home. Sally remarks “It’s a very large, three storey white Queenslander house that was initially built in the 1800’s. Garnett’s mother Liz decorated the entire house and garden on her own with a French influence with a little help by my mother Robyn.”

Green & Bloom  styled the floral arrangements. Sally remembers “My flowers were really unique and exactly what I had imagined.  I really wanted to include gum leaves and gum nuts, mixed berries and freesias.  I let Roberta from Green & Bloom do the rest – and they looked and smelled amazing.  We had a large wreath on the front gate and large arrangements of flowers tied onto the rotunda.  The reception flowers were large bunches of individual flower types from the bouquet.”

Sally wore a gown by Ella Bridal from Divine Bridal Cairns.

Sally recalls “The ceremony was held at the house on the lower rotunda.  We had guests arrive half an hour early so that Garnett could welcome them all as they arrived.  This was really lovely for him to be able to do as we had not seen some of them for years.  The photos from some of these moments show so much emotion.”

The wedding has one very special four legged guest Sally remembers. “Our dog Bob traveled down from Cairns with us on the plane.  He is a very special part of our lives and just had to be a part of the wedding.  He was waiting with Garnett for me at the end of the aisle in a very dashing black bow-tie.  He is a cream coloured Australian Kelpie who is 8 years old.”

Fiona walked down the aisle to “Down the Aisle (Wedding March 2)” by Fiona Joy Hawkins.

The couple were married in the lower rotunda, Sally says “We were married above a sea of friends. Nicole Evans, our wedding celebrant was fantastic.  She was a tutor of mine during Medical School.  She will also marry my sister Gillian in October this year!”

Of their photographer, Sally notes, “She was recommended to me by my sister Gillian who is getting married later this year. I loved her style of photography, I really wanted candid, sneaky photos that captured the moment and she did this perfectly.  Best decision that I made with regards to my Wedding.  I was able to completely relax and the photos that we ended up with are so beautiful that I actually have not got around to printing any yet because I don’t know which ones to choose!” Garnett wore a Hugo Boss tuxedo.

Sally says “The photos taken of Garnett and I are really amazing. They were taken in private gardens near the house.  I actually don’t have a one favourite, they are all favourites! Natalie gave us great direction.”

Sally wore shoes from Tony Bianco which she customised. She explains “My Aunty Julie, up here in Cairns, had the idea of removing the motif from my dress and sewing it onto my shoes.”

Guests celebrated with a cocktail style reception in the backyard of the house. Sally explains “We hired a large clear marquee, dance floor and lighting from Southern Cross Party Hire.  They were really great, I let the owner of the business make all the decisions about the placement of the marquee and lighting and he did an amazing job.”

Sally remembers “All of our speeches were amazing, and Natalie got some photos of the crowd laughing and really enjoying themselves.  These are some of my favourite reception photos.”

One of Sally’s fondest memories is a funny moment. She explains, “There was a noise complaint from the police quite early in the evening.  They were welcomed at the front gate by about 10 children under the age of 10.  I believe that this was a huge highlight for them all! The fact that we were able to have my dog, and all my cousin’s children running around like crazy during the night. It was described by one of them who is 5 years old as ‘The best night of my life’.  The whole day was just filled with joy and laughter.”

The evening had a surprise performance. Sally says, “Our friends from Veterinary School had a very big surprise for us on the night.  They had choreographed and learned the words to a song for each of us that they performed with the help of the band.  They sang ‘Smooth Operator’ for Garnett, wearing feather boas – to represent his single University years.  Later in the evening they sang ‘She’s got the look’ by Roxette for me, dressing in leather with mullet wigs.  There is photographic evidence which is hilarious!  It’s certainly not something that I have ever seen at a wedding before!”

The food was catered by family, technically! Sally recalls “The reception was a cocktail style function and was catered by The Kookaburra Cafe, which is actually Garnett’s family’s restaurant.  It is an Italian restaurant in Paddington.  We had lots of canapés and gourmet pizza to eat.  Our Croquembouche was also made by the restaurant.  We actually had to cut the cake early, as the kids had started to dismantle it and eat it.  Bob also got a profiterole.”

Congratulations Sally & Garnett! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us! Thank you also to Natalie McComas for sharing today’s images!


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  • Makeup Artist
  • Chloe Turner, MAC Brisbane
  • Venue
  • Private property
  • Oli says:
    August 9, 2012 at 10:55 am

    Beautiful coverage of a wicked setup. I’d kill to shoot a wedding like that. Well not kill. But maybe grin strangely while stroking my camera.

  • Sazlly Ogilvie says:
    August 9, 2012 at 11:12 am

    We walk past this house every day. That white dog, Billie, is simply gorgeous. What a lovely family filled day!

  • Justin says:
    August 9, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    beautiful coverage of a wonderfully relaxed backyard wedding. Natalie’s photos all ways standout from the crowd.

  • Let Them Eat Cake: Sunday Round-Up for August 12, 2012 | A Wedding Cake Blog says:
    August 12, 2012 at 10:07 pm

    […] love this Elegant and Intimate Backyard Wedding, from Polka Dot Bride.  I feature the couple’s cake, a croquembouche (a traditional French […]

  • Sally & Garnett | Natalie McComas says:
    August 21, 2012 at 8:48 pm

    […] excited to have Sally & Garnett’s beautiful back yard wedding featured on Polka Dot Bride today… To read their story and see all the vendors – check it out […]

  • Australian Groom Style | Polka Dot Bride says:
    December 21, 2012 at 9:04 am

    […] Style – Garnettby Polka Dot BrideFor his backyard Brisbane wedding (see Sally and Garnett’s Beautiful Backyard Wedding) groom Garnett completed his dapper look with a suit from Hugo Boss. Adding a crisp white shirt, […]

  • Stacy Squires Photography says:
    April 19, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    a stunning wedding



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