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Belinda & Mark

I must admit, I am completely overjoyed pouring over the sweet Austrian Australian wedding of Belinda and Mark. It is so beautiful to see two cultures blend so beautifully together and shine through at a wedding. When we talk about making a wedding your own – this is such a beautiful example! Belinda and Mark chose Carla Atley Photography to capture their day in all of its glory.

Belinda cheekily tells the story of how she and Mark met. “We swiped right! Not many people know this, but we actually met on Tinder. I call it embracing modern technology! We probably otherwise would have never met, having different circles of friends and coming from different parts of Perth – I was a ‘Northie’, he was a ‘Southie’ (as we call it over here). We recently settled in the middle and bought a house together in Applecross!”

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Belinda and Mark held their wedding at Edwards Wines. Belinda explains, “I’d visited Edwards Wines numerous times before and always remembered them fondly – not only for the amazing wines of course but their story. In the early 90’s, family patriarch Brian Edwards  flew from the UK to Australia solo in his Tigermoth he affectionately named ‘Matilda’. He was determined to achieve his goal to follow in the footsteps of great Australian aviation pioneers Bert Hinkler & Sir Charles Kingsford Smith.

His trip also set out to honour the memory of his late rather Clifford, who went missing in action in WWII, and to raise money for Legacy who’s cared for himself and his mother for 20 years. The trip was a success and Matilda resides proudly at the estate in her own hangar, to this day! They kindly allowed us to take her out to be on display for our wedding. It was certainly a talking point.

Sadly Brian died in 2003 from Leukaemia, but his legacy lives on with his two sons Christo & Mike who now run the vineyard and are real larakins like their dad. Unbeknown to me, The Edwards family are good family friends of Mark’s, so when I found that out it was a no-brainer! Obviously meant to be. It was a good excuse for people to come down to Margs for a mini break (away from the kids!) and celebrate with us in a magical setting. We had to bring absolutely everything to the venue, but I loved the idea of an outback wedding under the stars! It was so worth it.”

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Belinda walked down the aisle to ‘All of Me’ by John Legend, sung live by vocalist Shameem Taheri-Lee.

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Clothing was a hit on the day, Belinda remembering, “Mark traveled all the way to the Gössl store in Austria to get fitted for his suit (or ‘lederhosen’ being the correct term) with his mum! His groomsmen also wore lederhosen from Gössl. My dad wore ‘fancy’ farm attire – a tweed jacket complete with an Akubra hat – wearing a suit just isn’t him, not only that I couldn’t imagine him in one!”

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Laurissa Knowles officiated the ceremony, which the bride and groom had spoken in two languages. Belinda explains “It was so important we got this right. We wanted our wedding to be a seamless blend of both of our cultures – neither of us are particularly religious but both really proud of our roots! Mark was born in Austria and migrated over with his parents when he was young. I’m a farm girl from Wheatbelt WA. The ceremony was spoken in both languages, with Mark’s dad Hans the ‘unofficial’ celebrant who welcomed the guests and helped us recite our vows (in both languages). It made for a really personal experience, and amusing for Mark’s family I’m sure, trying to understand me!”

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“Oh, and that time I said the wrong name at the ceremony. When I was reading my vows in Austrian (which I was very nervous about) I accidentally said ‘Hans Christian’ instead of ‘Mark Hans Christian’ – Hans is Mark’s dad’s name! I clearly read it in the wrong order, but lucky for me everyone found it quite hilarious! So technically for a moment there I was marrying Mark’s dad!”

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Supper Road catered the wedding, the couple choosing food that worked with their style. Belinda telling, “The food was quite true to the theme – from freshly shucked local oysters, Tempura West Australian prawns and Elmars sausages with mustard & sauerkraut for entrees, to, slow roasted Harvey beef fillet, Kimberly barramundi & chicken schnitzel for mains it represented the ‘best of the best’. My mouth still waters just thinking about it! The only formal sit down component was the main meal – everything else was stand up canapé style. The mains were served as share plates down the table in ‘beggars banquet’ style. I love the idea of sharing food, it’s all about family & love!

Rhys Passmore from Supper Road is a genius! Amazing food, great team, and they never missed a beat. I couldn’t believe they were working out of a mobile kitchen (truck) because the food they served was 5 star, world class. People often talk about the food, still to this day! I had so many people coming up to me on the day saying it was the best wedding catering they’d ever had.”

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Of their photographer, Belinda remarks, “I met Carla at a friend’s wedding the year prior, that she photographed, and as soon as I saw the pictures I knew I had to lock her in! She is delightful, non-pushy and so talented at what she does. Not only is she delightful, she is so talented. She has a real skill for making people feel comfortable in front of a camera, which achieves the most beautiful, natural shots. and those natural & beautiful moments on film you want to cherish forever, encapsulate the day – the natural essence making you feel really comfortable. She gave us the most amazing natural wedding photos I’ve ever seen.”

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Belinda wore a gown from Tuscany Bridal, She tells, “My dress was lovely, but to be honest it wasn’t the most important thing to me, I was more focused on getting the day right. I had a good idea of what I wanted with the dress, and was fortunate to find it at the first shop we went to! The entire thing was champagne vintage lace, which featured flowers from the Australian outback – very fitting to the theme. I’m not very traditional & wasn’t keen on a veil, so I settled on a native flower arrangement in my hair instead! Comfort was really important to me, it’s a long day and you need to last! ”

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Bake The Cake crafted the wedding cake while the bride and groom lent their hand to very appropriate favors, Belinda telling, “For the men, Mark had glass stein glasses laser printed with the Western Australian & Styrian (Austrian) crests either side. I bought the shawls online and made tags for both of them. I thought people needed to be reminded they could take them home! We felt the gifts were both personal and practical, so they could use them on the night.”

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“I loved my 88 year old grandfather wowing everyone with his speech! He’d broken his leg the week before, so hubbled up on crutches, only to blow people away with such enthusiastic & touching words! The man is sharp as a tack!”

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“A highlight was when Mark’s family presented us with a ‘love seat’ they made & had shipped all the way from Austria! I was made in traditional fashion with Styrian colours & crest, as well as our names engraved on it. The seat is actually in the shape of a heart, which can be hiked up to create more room for others to sit (his family suggested it would be the perfect place for children, hint hint!). It now sits proudly under our favourite tree in the back yard. A seat for us to grow old together on.”

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Of their first dance, Belinda remembers, “We chose ‘Let’s Stay Together’ by Al Green – performed by the amazing Cathrine Summers & her band under the stars! To be honest we kind of winged it, due to lack of time leading up to the wedding! We had fun with it though. After a few moments we invited the bridal party to come up & dance, then our families. A real highlight was dancing with my mum & dad hand-in-hand with my sister (they’ve been divorced for 20 years). And inviting my dad’s partner Robin to join us! A lot of people were touched. Family is everything.”

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Congratulations Belinda and Mark! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you also to Carla Atley Photography for sharing today’s wedding with us!