There is no doubt in my mind that Katrina and Jake set out from day dot with a very clear idea of what they wanted for their waterside white wedding in Yamba, The couple asked their guests to dress in white, a lovely idea in itself, the bride in her stunning long sleeve blue gown creating the most beautiful “something blue”. It was a beach wedding that made the most of its sleepy seaside setting as it paid homage to the little ocean town and it’s quirky ways. The day was brought to life with photographer Denis Banks Photography capturing it all.

The couple met at school, Katrina remembering “Jake and I grew up together in the rural town of Grafton. Although we crossed paths many times growing up as most people in small country towns do, we didn’t officially meet until I moved to Grafton High and became friends with a girl named Kate, who just happened to have an older brother with a cute friend named Jake.”

Katrina had a very clear idea in mind for her gown, choosing to have it custom made by a local dressmaker. She tells “I never actually went and tried any wedding dresses on, I knew all along I wanted the dress I got and of course being as certain as I want knew it wouldn’t be found in any old bridal store. I had my dress custom made and although it took so much time and patience for my dressmaker (adjusting those hundreds of tiny beads and sequins must have been challenging), I loved it. I look back now and I can’t imagine myself in anything else.” Her bridesmaids wore simple white dresses from Zimmermann.

There were plenty of handmade elements for the day, including the decor and bouquets, Katrina explaining” I was adamant I wanted white peonies and almost every florist said I just WOULDN’T get them in winter, sure enough about 3 weeks before the wedding I found them online for sale so we just ordered them and made the bouquets ourselves the morning of the wedding.”

The couple chose to say their vows beside Yamba’s main beach, celebrating at the Yamba Surf Life Saving Club. Katrina says  “Yamba is special to us as we plan to move there and raise a family, but it is more important to Jake because he grew up in the surf club. Many weekends of his were spent down on the main beach so it was really special to be able to have that connection to the location. One day we will take our children down to the main beach for nippers and we will be able to say… we got married right here.”

The bride walked down the aisle to the classic “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwoʻole. “I have always known this would be the song I wanted to walk down the aisle to so again this was an easy choice. No real reason – I just loved the song. I was lucky enough to have my dad walk me down the aisle.”

Angus McKimm performed the ceremony, of which the bride notes “We didn’t have readings, just really short and sweet. Our celebrant was another person from Grafton, who Jake and I had both known for years which made it easier and not so scary.”

Dressed in all white, the guests were a sight as they celebrated cocktail hour on the deck overlooking the sea.

What is a day at the beach without a sandcastle? The newlyweds were in for a special surprise. Katrina explains “My mother in law Nicole surprised us with this insane sandcastle she had organised to be set up on the beach, she had organised a man to come from Byron to set it up the morning of the wedding. It was incredible.”

Of their photographer, the newlyweds remark “Denis was great, he really went above and beyond for us, not only on the day but the weeks leading up as well. He even gave Jake a call the day before just to see how he was feeling. And bonus points to him for dropping my Aunty home at the end of the night.”

The couple chose Winter for their big day. “We went for a winter seaside soiree  The atmosphere was very much like us, relaxed, fun, not too formal – haha, we didn’t take anything TOO seriously.”

Guests took home tiny potted cacti planted by the newlyweds, who also created the floral hoop decor and tambourines for guests to play.

Dancing began with “Ho Hey” by The Lumineers kicking off the night, Katrina remarking “Jake is super shy so the idea of a first dance was terrifying. I picked this song because it was short but also for the beat. We brought in heap of white tambourines with coloured ribbons for our guests and had our bridal party hand them out as the music started so everyone could play along to our first dance.”

There was an extra special gift for the bride, she tells “The sapphire and diamond ring I wore on the day belonged to Jake’s grandmother. During speeches, Jake’s father gave me this beautiful gift. It was a sapphire necklace, it had belonged to Jake’s Grandfather who I never had the pleasure of meeting. He had given it to Jake’s dad and said it was for his wife when they got married. It is beautiful and both are things I will cherish and be able to pass on to my own children.”

The finishing touch on today’s story? This beautiful film of the celebrations by Wintersun Productions.

Congratulations Katrina and Jake! Thank you for sharing your day with us! Thank you also to Denis Banks Photography for sharing the beautiful celebration with us!