Jonathon and Natalie

Jonathon and I were high school sweethearts meeting in secret on the beach and dreaming about our future. A few years later after he joined the Defence Force and I finished University we were drawn back together and haven’t looked back since. Within 3 months of moving in together we were engaged just under 2 years later and a deployment overseas, we married on Tuesday November 13th 2012 and now are expecting our first child (a wedding night baby).

The wedding was challenging to organise, Jonathon was overseas and our budget was tight (self-funded), so I relied heavily on Polka Dot Bride and Etsy, inspiring me to source local suppliers and handmade items. We chose Glengariff Historic Estate in Dayboro for our special day. Our 50 guests had plenty of space to roam, the staff were incredible and attentive, the food and drink was amazing and limitless and the sunset views over the mountains set the atmosphere perfectly.

We started the day with the bridal party and close family at our very small townhouse. Everyone brought food and drinks to sustain us throughout our hair and makeup (which was loved by all!). All the bridal party had free rein on what they wanted and I think that made everyone a little bit more relaxed and made for a wonderful day. The groom’s party spent the morning downstairs playing Halo and cooking a BBQ. After lunch we carpooled everyone to the Dayboro Cottages to get ready and get some pre-photos which turned out amazing thanks to our family friends supplying their talents as our gift.

Getting dressed was an emotional experience, my parents surprised me with jewellery, I finally got to adorn my couture gown after months of the designer slaving away on my dress, I put on my ‘something old’ a veil from the 1950’s I found in a vintage store and as Jonathon’s grandparents were unable to attend, I received pearls and a handkerchief to borrow for the day. To top it off my godfather lent his car to drive me to the venue.

I enlisted the help of an event stylist to bring my myriad of ideas into something cohesive. They were able to adapt the theme of our invitations for the menus, programs and signage for the day. Additionally, they found a way to mix in my Etsy purchases, the venues decorations, floral arrangements, and traditional items.

As I’m first generation Australian, we wanted to tie in a few traditional Yugoslav elements. All the guests were given a sprig of rosemary for luck to the bride and groom, the bridal car had a sash passed down through the family, Slivovic (plum brandy) was served immediately after the ceremony to toast and after all the formalities we taught the guests the Kola (traditional dance) and got everyone involved.

The celebrant was so cheery and all the guests raved about him. Jonathon’s big input was helping to write the ceremony, it made it that much more personable.

Our favorite thing from the day other than saying ‘I Do’, was the moreish cake, the abundance of scented stunning flowers, our first dance to P!nk’s ‘True Love’ and the celebratory atmosphere which can only be achieved by the talents of the vendors and being surrounded by close family and friends.

We know there are a lot of expectations about weddings and pressures involved, so we really fought hard to limit the formalities and just celebrate. Our ceremony was only 13minutes long and we limited the speeches to one representative from each family who gathered stories from everyone and shared their messages. With the help of a Wedding Day Coordinator and our MC (my sister), we had time to relax at the end of the night, dance, eat cake and just relish in our moment as husband and wife.

Images by JMG Photographics

Ms Gingham says: Love, love, love that wedding cake!!! Beautiful wedding and such happy news with Jonathon and Natalie expecting their first child!! Very exciting stuff!

Natalie says: “23, married to my highschool sweetheart, given up work and tucked away my degrees to be a full-time wife, moved interstate, supportive of my army husband and look like a train wreck expecting our wedding night bub… and all since 13th November 2012! P.S. I love cake and all things pretty – enough said.”