Lydia and James

When Lydia and James chose Collingwood Children’s Farm for their wedding day I am not sure they expected the ducks, goats and fellow four legged friends to make an appearance – but that they did, and there is nothing quite like a bride with a goat to make your day wonderful. Lydia and James chose Jerome Cole Photography to capture their day, which escapulated the couple’s love of morning runs with breakfast at the farm and the relaxed feeling they wanted their guests to enjoy.

James tells us the story of how he met his wife.  “We met in our final year of uni. When I first met her, I went home and told my sister that I had met the girl I was going to marry. She told me I was an idiot. At the time, Lydia was planning on moving to the US to work as soon as she graduated. We had only really known each other for a couple of weeks when Lydia was due to fly over there to apply for jobs. Not wanting to miss out on my chance, I wrote her a letter, basically explaining that I had fallen in love with her and thought she should maybe come back to Australia. So she did!”

James chose a dapper blue suit from TM Lewin with pink bow tie.

The bride chose an illusion neck beaded gown by Anna Campbell. James explaining “We both know Anna through her younger sister, and always admired the way she created her label from scratch, starting out making dresses herself at home. Lydia had looked at quite a few dresses without finding anything she really liked, and was always planning on looking at some of Anna’s dresses. When she did, she instantly fell in love with the dress she ended up wearing on the big day.”

Lydia and James chose Collingwood Children’s Farm  for their day – which included a few snapshots with the resident goats! James tells “It was actually the only venue that we looked at. When we got engaged we were living in Clifton Hill and often went running along Merri Creek, stopping for breakfast at the Farm Cafe (who did the catering for the wedding). Not only is the food amazing, but the whole feel and atmosphere of the farm is as well. I have some great memories from the Farm as a child, and I’ve never met anyone as excited by animals as Lydia, so the Farm seemed like the perfect venue for the wedding. The scenery is stunning as well, particularly down by the river where we had the ceremony.”

Lydia walked down the aisle to “Honey and the Moon, by Joseph Arthur – played on acoustic guitar by two of our close friends.”

James remembers “The ceremony was outdoors, down by the river at the back of the Collingwood Children’s Farm, with hay bales and rugs for seating. It was a beautiful day with perfect weather, and about 120 guests. We were aiming for a relaxed, outdoorsy feel, and didn’t want the ceremony to be too formal. My sister was the celebrant (the first wedding she had ever performed!) and she did an incredible job. We had two close friends do readings.

Michelle had spent the last 9 months completing the course to become a wedding celebrant, and received the final paperwork 3 days before the wedding (I’m not sure what we would have done if it hadn’t come through in time!) We are very close, but I have to say I had some concerns about whether or not her part of the ceremony would be ready in time – while she has many good qualities, completing assignments/work on time is not really one of them. On the day however, I think she vastly exceeded everyone’s expectations. She spoke beautifully, but the highlight was that instead of a standard celebrant’s speech, she read a five minute poem that she wrote herself, describing love and our relationship perfectly.”

Guests celebrated the nuptials with hot coffee thanks to Coffee Caboose. James says “We hired a mobile coffee cart that came along, and provided us all with delicious coffee as soon as the ceremony finished. Excellent to deal with, and they made sure to bring us coffee while we were off taking photos.”

Of their photographer, James remembers “Jerome seemed to have a real passion for photography, and had some beautiful shots, with much more than just your standard wedding photos. In person he instantly made us feel comfortable and at ease, which was exactly what we were after. It made it easy to be natural in the photos, and all the time we spent with him taking photos was entertaining.”

“It was great having the wedding at the farm, and we had a chance to wander round and say hi to a few of the farm animals which was a lot of fun. Coincidentally, as we finished the ceremony a couple of wild ducks and a family of ducklings arrived and wandered round, which was a fun addition and also help make a couple of great photos!”

Reception celebrations continued at the The Farm Cafe thanks to resident planner Amelia who planned the celebration and Rebecca of Little Lady Blooms who styled the beautiful blooms. “The place was covered in flowers that looked absolutely stunning. A lot of native Australian flowers and leaves decorating every surface, and she managed to make it look even better than we had imagined it could.”

The reception kicked off with a cake made by the couple’s close friend. James explains “The cake was made by one of my friends from high school, Sebastian Graham, who is a Data Analyst working in London. In his spare time he is a bit of a chef, and makes amazing cakes. We asked him to do the cake for us, and what he created blew us away. I learnt afterwards that a day after flying back in from London, he found out which flowers we were using, and went and bought his own to use on a practice cake! It was absolutely stunning, not only covered in beautiful flowers, but also animals and topped with two replicas of our pet goats.”

James remembers “My father Rod, Lydia’s two sisters Jacinth and Naomi, and a close friend Sophie all made speeches, and they were all perfect. An excellent balance of humour and emotion, combined with some some heartfelt advice for making relationships work and raising children.”