Flo & Mark
I love the relaxed atmosphere of Flo & Marks modern The Grounds Of Alexandria wedding. The pair were adamant they did not want of a day of tradition and formality, instead setting the scene for their day with moments and details that reflected the big party they wanted. They chose Solas Photography to capture their day.
Flo starts us off with the story of how she and Mark met. “Mark and I knew each other online when we were in high school, I went to school with his cousin. We lost touch as we got older but fate would bring us together. Mark and I met at The Greenwood Hotel in North Sydney on Australia Day in 2008. We were each there with what we had recently discovered were mutual friends. We got talking again on that day and started dating a few weeks later.”
Flo and Mark chose The Grounds of Alexandria for their wedding, noting, “The traditional church and function hall was not for us, however we weren’t wanting to make all our guests travel for hours out of Sydney so this limited options that would be able to cater for a wedding. We wanted the ability to have the ceremony and reception at the same venue to keep things simple and fuss free. Great food and drink were a must on our checklist as well as a beautiful location that didn’t feel too stuffy and formal. We chose The Atrium because it suited exactly what we wanted. We loved the relaxed vibe, the food is to die for and the aesthetics are amazing (we particularly loved the greenery hanging from the glass roof and the ‘green house’ look).”
Flo walked down the aisle to “Cat Power’s cover of Sea of Love. The song means a lot to the two of us, and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the place once it began.”
Scott Duncombe officiated the ceremony. Flo remarking, “Scott our celebrant was invaluable in the lead up to and on the day. Absolutely everything was so well organised and he had so much advice and tips and tricks as well as things we needed to considered that we never would’ve thought of. He went above and beyond what he needed to do on the day and helped to make sure that things were running smoothly even after his official duties were over.
Our ceremony was perfect, personalised and stress free. My favourite part of wedding planning was just after booking things or making a decision and envisioning how it would all come together on the day. It was a nice reward for any stress that might have happened and also kept us both focused on the overall day.”
“We didn’t want the stuffy formalities of more traditional ceremonies and we did not want a religious ceremony. The ceremony was a chance for us to say what we really loved about the other, to remember how we have gotten through difficult times with the help of the other, to think about some of the truly amazing memories we have made and to say what we hope to look forward to in the future together.
Walking down the aisle with my father and seeing Mark waiting at the end I was overwhelmed with emotion and the tears were already starting! We had our close friend Maya perform the reading of an extract from the book The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams. It is such a beautiful reading and made us both laugh and cry.”
“We wanted an outdoor ceremony but were possibly going have to move it indoors because of the chance of rain that afternoon. I had left the decision about where to hold it up to Mark to make when he arrived so I wasn’t aware of the decision to stick with the original outdoor plan until I arrived at the venue. I was a few minutes early to the ceremony and we decided to get it started asap because it looked like it would just hold out for just a little bit longer.
It was the right decision because it held out until a few moments after we had finished and a massive downpour arrived.”
Of their photographer, Flo remembers, “James from Solas was our photographer for the day. Mark and I saw his blog and just felt that this was exactly the style of photography we wanted. Not too posed or artificial, just capturing real moments and memories. Our friends still tell us how lovely he was to have around and just how fantastic all the photos have come out. He really captured the love, fun and magic of it all.”
Flo chose a gown by Lover the Label, noting, “I wore the Eden dress by Australian designers Lover the Label. I was after something simple and elegant yet modern and fun. I had some ideas about what I wanted for the dress and what style would suit me, but when I started shopping I was really open to trying on any style. The only feature I was pretty set on was a high neckline, although I did try on some other styles just to make sure I wasn’t missing out on anything!
I purchased the dress from David Jones Bridal at Pitt St, Sydney with my mum and sister as my advisors for the day. It was a great experience. I felt relaxed and the stylist listened to what ideas I had and made suggestions for what might suit me and was within my budget, she was actually the one that picked out my dress to try on! It was the third dress of the day and I loved it but since it was my first time dress shopping I wanted to try some others. I went back later that day and bought it because everything else I tried on afterwards was disappointing! My sister and I made the veil together.”
“We were keen to avoid that three hour lull between ceremony and reception for our guests so we kept everything in the one venue. Whilst we took photos around the venue our guests were kept busy with a cheese and antipasto grazing table.”
JDZ Designs designed bright and beautiful stationery for the day. Flo explains, “All the stationery was designed by my friend Jeanette del Zio who runs an interior design company (JDZ Designs). I had spent so much time trying to hunt down the perfect stationery design and just couldn’t quite find the right thing.
I spoke with Jeanette and gave her a general idea of the colour palette and a request for watercolours and she came up with some designs that were exactly what I was wanting. She hand painted watercolour images that were then digitally inserted into the various stationery items.”
The Grounds Florals By Silva created the floral arrangements for the day – which included rosemary, “We made sure to include rosemary in the bouquet and in the table arrangements. My partner’s paternal side is Serbian and traditionally at weddings everyone wears a sprig of rosemary, this was our way of incorporating the tradition into our wedding and it smelt amazing too!”
“We loved the idea of having the food served family style. It kept the atmosphere relaxed and chatty and removed the food envy that inevitably occurs with the alternate drop menu options. It also was helpful for those picky eaters, food intolerances and other special dietary requirements! Everyone really enjoyed this serving style and no one was disappointed with their meal.”
“Our dad’s speeches were beautiful and really welcomed us into the family. They made everyone laugh and cry and full of love.”
Of their first dance, Flo remembers, “Our first dance was to ‘Perfect Day’ by Lou Reed. We chose not to have formal dance lessons in the end and to just go with the moment. It was wonderful to just have such an intimate moment together in the middle of it all. It was a chance to pause and really feel present.”
Congratulations Flo and Mark! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you to Solas Photography for sharing today’s celebration!