Forest wedding portrait

Jane & Tim

Jane and Tim chose dusk for their relaxed forest wedding, They led their guests deep into the heart of the forest, where there was silence and just their little group as they spoke their vows. It was very much in line with how they wanted their day to unfold – a sense of chilling out, a nod to their love of nature and anticipation of the moments to come. They chose Tilly Clifford to capture their day.

Tim tells their story. “Jane and I both lived in the same places while we were growing up, but we only found out of our relative distance to one another after we first met. She had just gotten a job at a games store in the main street of Katoomba, a small town in the Blue Mountains. I met her there and was immediately drawn to her, for she was nothing like anyone I’d ever met before or since. Only after talking together did we discover just how close we’d come to each other before now.

We went to neighbouring schools, lived in streets on the opposite end of the same village, even passed right by one another by foot one day. We were like moths circling a flame, always flying around one another but never quite meeting in the middle. I think it was the happiest bit of serendipity I’ve ever had in my life. A couple of years later and here we are, newlyweds.”

Guests at Penrose Forest

It was dusk as the ceremony began at Penrose State Forest. Jane noting, “The ceremony was held in Penrose State Forest, it’s a logging pine forest criss-crossed with dirt roads between Sydney and Goulburn, we found a clearing within the trees that was perfect our wedding. We then spoke with the forestry corporation to make sure the area wouldn’t be logged before or on the day.”

Groom in Forest Wedding

Processional at forest wedding

Jane remembers, “I walked through the forest to ‘Arorua’s Theme’ from the Child of Light soundtrack. I loved having my dad walk me through the forest, knowing how much that moment meant to him and how proud he was.”

forest marriage ceremony

Penrose state forest wedding

David Segal officiated the ceremony which followed the intimate feeling the couple wanted. Jane tells, “We had a Hand-fasting as part of our ceremony as a tribute to our ancestry and to express our love and commitment. We wanted to have a very natural fluid style to the ceremony, as we both didn’t feel that a traditional wedding was for us. It was to be intimate and fun, hidden away from the humdrum of everyday life. Being held deep within the forest there was only the sound of bird song and the wind through the trees, it added an almost magic element to the moment.”

Penrose Forest Ceremony

Tim adds, “The other thing I cannot forget is how as we clasped our hands together for the hand fasting, I could feel her shaking. She was still smiling, she was excited. Everything we’d worked for was coming to a head and you could see it, and also feel it.”

David Segal Celebrant

Jane remembers, “I was so overwhelmed during the ceremony that I didn’t hear the celebrant ask a question during the hand-fasting, I suddenly realised and said “sorry, could you repeat that” and everyone erupted in laughter. Both Tilly our photographer and David our celebrant did an amazing job with making our wedding memorable and a dream plan. The whole process of planning was fun and stressful but writing up our ceremony was my favourite part of the process, being able to take that time to focus on why I love my husband and how I wanted to express my feelings on the day was really nice.”

Forest wedding ceremony backdrop

Tim admits, “I got lost driving to the ceremony, to my own wedding. It was a nightmare! Luckily we weren’t the only ones and I managed to get my bearings and lead myself and the Best Man, along with a car load of our friends to the right spot. Though of course, only after I’d had that sinking feeling.”

Australian forest wedding

Happy guests at forest wedding

Tim remembers, “For me, one of the greatest things was having my parents there. It doesn’t sound like much but when your family is mostly estranged from one another and with a lot of animosity, it’s heartening to see them put it all aside for you. It shows that there are more important things than their problems with each other.”

Bride being hugged at forest wedding

Happy guets at forest wedding

Australian bride in Zuhair MuradBride and bridesmaid in forest wedding

Jane chose a Zuhair Murad gown from  My Theresa as her wedding dress. Her bridesmaid wore a black dress from The G Store . Jane remembers, “I wore a Zuhair Murad evening gown from the 2015 Resort collection. It is a white cotton and silk gown with plunging neckline and floor-sweeping silhouette. I had been searching for a dress that I felt was worthy of such an occasion, when I come across the dress it just stuck with me.

I bought it online which was terrifying, as I hadn’t been able to try it on. When it arrived and I put it on for the first time I felt so happy with my choice. It is the most comfortable dress I’ve worn and I wasn’t weighed down by metres of fabric on the warm night.”

Bridal party in forest wedding

Amy's flower shop bouquets

Amy’s Flower Shop created simple floral arrangements for the day, tying in the beauty of the forest.

Zuhair Murad Wedding DressWalker Slater Waistcoat

Australia forest wedding portraitForest Wedding Portrait in Black and White

Black and White forest wedding photo

Of their photographer, Jane tells, “We asked Tilly Clifford to be our photographer, after we found her online and fell in love with her style and work. We had never had photos taken before and Tilly made us feel really comfortable and relaxed through the whole process. Tilly has a fantastic eye, finding those little details within each moment. She is very professional and is easy to open up to. I can’t speak highly enough about the photos we have and the work she did for us, Tilly is a great photographer and a genuinely lovely person.”

Newlyweds in forest

Tilly Clifford Wedding Photographer

Causal forest wedding

Bride in Zuhair MuradNewlyweds at forest

Bride and groom walking in forest

Newlyweds in pine forest

Australian forest wedding

Candlelit pine forest wedding

Reception celebrations were held at the bride’s parent’s home. Jane remembering, “The wedding was designed with simple, clean details. Bare tables set with white napkins and antique cutlery, mismatched chairs and geometric terrariums potted with baby ferns. The focus was on the ones we love and for us all to just relax and enjoy ourselves. The menu was a fusion of light summer food from Greece and Thailand, with ciders and beers and great music throughout.”

Wedding reception in a forestOutdoor pine forest reception

Jane tells, “Our wedding was styled around our love of nature and the geometry of the universe, we even picked the date because it is Pi in the American format (3.14.15), we wanted to keep it simple so we would have a relaxed wedding, keeping focus on what was important to us on the day.”

Outdoor wedding reception

The couple chose not to have a first dance, instead providing plenty of music for a chilled out evening.

Strawberry and chocolate wedding cake

Speeches at forest wedding

Cakr cutting at forest wedding

Congratulations Jane and Tim! Thank you for sharing your beautiful day with us! Thank you also to Tilly Clifford for sharing today’s wedding!