I love it to bits when a couple plans a day that is so reflective of who they are. Christina and Adam, who planned an elegant Swan Valley wedding, wanted, in Christina’s words “…. a wedding that celebrated our relationship and represented us individually.” From their traditional church vows, their tea ceremony, the reception designed to feel like a mid summers night’s dream and the family and friends it involved. The newlyweds worked with Peggy Saas to capture their day.

New groom Adam tells the tale of how the couple came to be. “We met at work — Christina was my supervisor at the time. She eventually left the workplace but we kept in touch and the rest they say is history.”

Christina considered her look carefully, settling on a two piece gown by Karen Willis Holmes which was altered to to suit her style by Holly Barker Millinery and paired with shoes by Valentino . She explains “There are people that dream and know exactly what dress they wanted for their wedding day, but I was very hesitant to start. I went to about eight different bridal stores around Perth and tried on about 80 odd dresses, with a lot of mixed experiences. Then at Karen Willis Holmes, I found my fairy gownmother in Stacey, who was absolutely gorgeous, patient and understood what I wanted, which was something different, elegant, fun and something that represented me.

The two piece KWH gown – the Mabel crop top and the Nina skirt was perfect. It had clean lines, modern, elegant and most importantly it was fun and comfortable. As cliche as this sounds, as soon as I put it on I knew it was meant to be for me. As I was having a church ceremony, I required a bit of modesty. So with the help of the lovely Holly Barker Millinery, I picked out some gorgeous Italian lace, (onto) which Holly carefully hand-stitched Swarovski crystals. These were placed around the midriff area, and I decided to have a section of the lace on the sleeves to tie the use of lace together. It was a designer gown blinged up and made according to what I wanted.”

Christina and Adam chose the stunning St. Mary’s Cathedral  for their ceremony, telling “The ceremony was at St. Mary’s Cathedral. This is my parish, the place where I go to Mass every Sunday. It’s a beautiful cathedral with a mix of Gothic architecture mixed with the modern sunlit high ceiling to floor windows. I know all the parish priests at the church but Monsignor Keating was one that held the Catholic values and with a wicked sense of humour.”

The bride walked down the aisle to Pachelbel’s Canon in D.

Of their ceremony, Christina remembers “I wanted to get married at my parish and church. It was a fairly traditional Catholic wedding ceremony. But because Adam wasn’t Catholic, we didn’t have a full Mass. We chose our readings together. The readings all centred around building a strong foundation for a prosperous marriage. We also incorporated a candle ceremony to symbolise our two separate families becoming as one. It was a short but heartfelt ceremony.”

Christina and Adam created plenty of space so they could enjoy the day – right down to a post ceremony picnic! They tell “The picnic was probably also a really nice touch. It looked amazing and really split up the day and allow the bridal party to enjoy a relaxing break in between ceremonies and also allow the photographer and videographer to get candid moments set against a beautiful backdrop of Hyde Park. We were also lucky enough to raid the bakery next to the park for a coffee run and pastries.”

A traditional Chinese tea ceremony followed. “The traditional Chinese tea ceremony was a great opportunity to show our appreciation and gratitude towards our family for the love and values that they instilled in us and also allowed Christina to celebrate her culture on her wedding and also provided us with the chance to host our first function at our new home, along with being another opportunity to eat.”

Of their photographer, Christina notes “I met Peggy in the food blogging world. She was bubbly, personable, approachable and funny. So when she transferred her photography talents to weddings I knew I had to grab her to capture our big day. I love her candid style, attention to detail and the way she captures the light. On the day Peggy made everyone feel at ease (even those that naturally hate being in front of the camera). She was also able to coordinate, us – the rowdy bridal party and made sure Adam and I had taken photos with all the guests.”

Christina and Adam worked with Stacey Clark Weddings  to style their wedding at Sandalford Winery  where celebrations continued, Christina noting “The reception venue was very important for us as both Adam and I love our food and wine. So it was important to find a venue that could host our large group of family and friends while serving up a delicious meal – Sandalford Winery was able to do all that. In fact, the Underground Cellar was the perfect choice. It is used to be a functional cellar so it was very industrial chic, which perfectly contrasted to the delicate floral arrangements and candlelight. To top it off the grounds at Sandalford are absolutely stunning with beautiful vineyards, a lake, gardens and with the Swan River flowing right at the edge of the property, it was perfect.”

Enjoyment factor was high for Christina and Adam during their engagement, every aspect was fun to plan – right down to the handpainted cake by The Garnished Co. “We both thoroughly enjoyed the whole wedding planning. I particularly loved coming up with a concept, feel and style for the wedding then finding the perfect vendors that were able to pull off my vision. We have to both admit we also really loved hunting for our perfect ideal wedding cake baker, especially as we are both foodies this is particularly important to us that we had the right person.”

“We wanted to celebrate with our closest families and friends and wanted the LONG day to be fun, relaxed and filled with good food and wine. We styled it so that it was something like a mid-summers night dream. Filled with soft lighting, candles and flowers in moody jewel tones and touches of marble, which worked really well with the wine barrels and the polished concrete floors of the Underground Cellar.”

Music was important to Christina and Adam who chose Cathrine Summers and Summers Groove Band for their reception. “We absolutely wanted a band for the reception. We wanted a band that played nice moody, jazzy pieces during the dinner and got some easy dancing songs that would get the dance floor going towards the end of the night. We found the perfect band – with a saxophone. The sultry, sassy voice of Cathrine Summers and her sexy Summer Groove and Summer Soul band got everyone on the dancefloor.”

Christina chose beautiful floral arrangements of greenery with red and pink flowers with florist Beans and Bunches. She remarks “I was incredibly impressed with my florist, Stacey from Beans and Bunches. Her flowers were absolutely stunning (and lasted for more than two weeks post wedding!) and that three metre floral arrangement above the bridal table was so much more than what I imagined and she was an absolute dream to work with.”

The couple chose one of their favourite songs “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran for their first dance, the bride remembering “We were fortunate to be generously offered lessons by a work colleague with a background in professional dancing. She came up with a choreography based on the song. We probably didn’t practice enough to do her teaching justice; however we definitely enjoyed the dance together and the fact that we had the live band playing the song for us. Ed Sheeran holds particular significance to us. We took a trip to Tasmania as a couple two years earlier and drove around the island (1700km) in a hire car. Radio reception was scarce and we only had two CDs to listen to the whole trip – one of which was Ed Sheeran’s.”

Kelsey Skinner Videographer was there on the day to capture a beautiful wedding film for the newlyweds.

Congratulations on your marriage Christina and Adam! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you also to Peggy Saas for sharing this gorgeous celebration!