Paula & Chris
There is a heartfelt essence to Paula and Chris’ Moby Dicks Whale Beach wedding. The couple chose their wedding site in honour of the bride’s late sister, the stories, the moments becoming all the more poignant as Paula and Chris celebrated their marriage. The couple chose Milton Gan to capture their wedding day.
Paula fills us in on how they came to be. “Ah…the story of how we met is so long and complicated but the special story is that we knew within a short time that we had found another person who understands all of the quirks of the other. We are so similar in so many ways and we laugh so much together at things that most other people wouldn’t find funny at all.”
Melissa Cauchi Hairdressing and Makeup by Megan styled the bride and bridesmaids hair and makeup, Paula noting “All of our vendors were amazing! We were really so lucky and I really believe we had the dream team behind us. Everyone and everything exceeded my expectations and everything ran so smoothly. I have to say getting ready with Makeup by Megan and Melissa Cauchi hair was such a special part of the day. We all got a long really well and I didn’t want them to leave. I really wish they could have come to the wedding with us. They were so lovely and so much fun.”
The bride added a very special ring to her look. “I wore a beautiful jade ring that was left to me by my elderly Aunty who died a few weeks before the wedding. It was really sad because when we were finalising the details at her property we found her calendar with our wedding marked on it. She was the most beautiful gentle woman.”
Paula wore a gown by Rachel Gilbert, noting, “I ended up wearing a beautiful Rachel Gilbert dress that I found on Gumtree! I’d left trying on underwear with my original dress until the final weeks and I could not find ANYTHING that did not show and I couldn’t go without as that was obvious too. I had a meltdown as I was two weeks away from the wedding and had nothing to wear! I spent hours online trying to get ideas and then I came across the Rachel Gilbert dress, never worn and listed in Melbourne on Gumtree.
It was funny as I had seen the dress in a wedding magazine a year earlier and I fell in love with it but I could not find it anywhere at the time and it was the one I really wanted. I contacted the girl who was selling it and she was so excited that it was coming to me. She packaged it beautifully and it arrived a few days later.
Of course it was too big so I set about looking for a local dress maker. I found Rebecca Ribbons from Ribbons Bridal Couture in Newport and the minute I saw her I knew it would all be okay. She had flowing red hair and a beautiful bohemian style and I couldn’t have found a better match.
We tried the dress on and she instantly knew how to make it mine…she was very busy though as she was making some formal dresses and as my dress had intricate beading it was a long process for her. I ended up getting the dress back in the afternoon the day before the wedding and it fit perfectly and looked amazing and I couldn’t believe how it had all worked out.
I also had to find new bridesmaids dresses at the last minute as the ones I had didn’t suit my new dress. I found five Zimmermann dresses on ebay and they all fit perfectly! One of my fondest memories of the day is my beautiful bridesmaids who just looked like perfect beautiful angels in their white dresses and perfect flower crowns.”
Paula and Chris chose Moby Dicks as their wedding venue, noting, “Moby Dicks were amazing. Our guests were so impressed by the service they received. So many people commented that ours was the most beautiful and generous wedding they had been to and I know a couple of people phoned the venue after our wedding to praise them.”
The groom chose a blue suit from Varqa Homme Paddington Oxford St.
For her walk down the aisle, Paula chose “The Eva Cassidy version of True Colours. It was sung by Chantal from Chantal and Cesar. It really reflected out love for each other and when I played it to my bridesmaids as a suggestion they were all in tears and agreed it was perfect.”
“Our ceremony was meant to be in the garden at Moby Dicks but as it was so windy and pouring with rain that it got moved to the balcony. The weather cleared up and was perfect by the time of our 3pm ceremony but I was so glad we were on the balcony and it looked amazing. The babies breath heart I had made by Wild Lotus Florist hung perfectly from the ceiling and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.”
Kathryn Breusch officiated the ceremony, the bride noting, “We wanted to make sure that we shared our special love for each other with everyone and we really did do that. We had our closest friends standing by our side and that was really important to us. We laughed a lot and cried a bit too and I love the photos of our bridesmaids in the background of the ceremony so happy that we were finally married!
Throughout the ceremony the celebrant had to keep reminding me to look at Chris, even when he was saying his vows to me. I was so excited to see all of our family and friends and that the day was finally here and that we were finally getting married that I was just staring open mouthed at the crowd in disbelief!”
The wedding paid homage to the bride’s sister. She remembers, “May 22nd is my sister Robyn’s birthday. She was killed in a car accident 16 years ago and it was such a painful loss for my family. She was a beautiful, kind, gentle woman and I felt so sad that we couldn’t share each others lives together. I also felt so sad for my dad that he wouldn’t be able to walk her down the aisle and it was so important for me that he had that opportunity with me.
When Moby Dicks showed me a list of dates that were available and May 22 was on it I just knew I had to pick that date! Even though it was a Friday and in winter and it meant I had to wait a few months longer than expected to get married I just knew it would mean a lot to my family to have this as my wedding day. It really fulfilled my need to include her in my wedding and now we can continue to celebrate on this date!
A couple of people told us later on that during the ceremony when the celebrant mentioned my sister a gust of wind blew up around us and then it went still and silent again. I’m definitely holding on to that as a sign from her!”
“My friend Michelle did a reading for us, a message that we wanted to give all of our family and friends. From “Instructions For Life In The New Millennium” by His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama –
“Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk. And that a loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life. Be gentle with the earth, be gentle with one another. When disagreements come remember always to protect the spirit of your union. When you realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other. So love yourselves, love one another, love all that is your life together and all else will follow.” ”
Of their photographers, Paula remembers, “Milton and Amy were so relaxed and calm and we are so happy with their beautiful photos. Initially I was so awkward and nervous as I hate having my photo taken. I was squeezing my bouquet so hard and had it stuck straight under my chin with stiff arms! Milton and Amy really helped me relax though and it became so natural to have them around and it resulted in some really beautiful photos that really captured who we are and our love for each other. What we really wanted was an artistic shot that we could blow up and frame and hang in our living room and they definitely delivered that with the stormy shot of us on Palm Beach with the Kombi.”
Kombi Celebrations transported the bridal party on the day.
“I put together a wooden box of gifts for our guests to choose from as a thank you. It contained organic chocolate wrapped in beautiful bright paper, little bags of chocolate covered almonds, mini cactus pots and tiny calico bags with a piece of amethyst (the stone of unconditional love) and mini incense cones. We also had some beautiful sugar skull cookies by Sweet N Pretty for people to take home.”
The cake was made by the bridesmaids, Paula remembering, “Our beautiful cake was a joint effort and it was such a special inclusion. Each bridesmaid made a layer of Nigella’s Chocolate Pavlova the night before the wedding and on the day of the wedding while we were getting ready we assembled it with layers of cream and raspberries. We had a last minute ring around to local supermarkets to find out who had more berries as we didn’t have enough and one of the bridesmaid went out in the pouring rain to pick them up. Chris (the groom) sent his two sons to pick up the cake and they delivered it to the venue. He said they took so much care to protect it from the rain and escorted it down the stairs and into the venue juggling the cake and umbrellas.”
“One of the bridesmaid’s husbands organised for he and my son Finn to make a heart out of fairy lights on the beach below the venue. When it went dark and we lost the view of Whale Beach the heart lit up and it was amazing to look out of the windows of Moby Dicks and see it.”
Paula tells, “One of my bridesmaids organised for every guest to write a message or memory from the day on a little cardboard heart. She collected them all at the end of the night and she will give them to us for our first anniversary.”
Of the first dance, the bride remembers, “Like many other things for our wedding the song and the dance came together at the last minute too. One of my friends is a ballroom dancer and she choreographed a beautiful dance for us to a popular song. We practiced quite a bit but it just didn’t feel right or come naturally. We also knew the song had been used at a lot at weddings and it didn’t really reflect the simple uniqueness that we wanted.
In the end we decided on Come Away with Me by Norah Jones (and again performed for us by Chantal and Cesar). We threw the choreography together in our kitchen a few nights before the wedding and based on what we had learnt from my friend and it was so perfect for us. Even now when we pass each other in the kitchen we sometimes sing the song and do the dance together. It is such a beautiful memory.”
Thank you Paula and Chris for sharing your wedding with us! Thank you also to Milton Gan for sharing today’s wedding!