Rebecca & James

You know how much we adore a coloured wedding dress around these parts, but Rebecca’s stunning cheery red gown? Absolutely breathtaking! Her stunning choice of gown, paired beautifully with the grand, imposing structure of the Newport Substation made for the most amazing glam industrial substation wedding. With dramatic, beautiful photography by Fennel & Fox Photography

Rebecca tells the tale of how they came to be. “We met on a dating app just a few weeks after I moved from Melbourne to Sydney. We’d been talking for a fortnight when we met – James came out to the airport to pick me up and kissed me as soon as he saw me. We both knew we’d struck something significant straight away. Three days later, we confessed we’d both fallen for each other, and I went back to Sydney in a long-distance relationship!
Funnily enough, we’d spoken once on the phone for work 18 months earlier. I got off the phone thinking what a stunning voice he had.”

James chiming in “I’d had a ring designed and I was going to wait to have it made but when I received the sketches I couldn’t help myself. We were driving to meet a friend, we had our dog with us, I unexpectedly pulled over at Elwood beach, we sat down by the sand and I proposed. With only a sketch of the ring!”

Nancy Leung Couture created the bride’s stunning gown, Rebecca remembering “Nancy Leung made my red silk dress. I did try on white dresses but just couldn’t find anything that felt like “me.” I love vintage designs and wanted to feel like myself rather than a “bride”! Nancy sketched away while I described what I had in mind, and she quickly illustrated exactly what I wanted in just a few minutes.”

Rebecca and James chose The Substation, Newport for their wedding, explaining “Newport Substation was striking. We both love buildings full of history.”

Rebecca remembers “I walked down the aisle to “Rooms on Fire” by Stevie Nicks. My dad walked me down the aisle. I had Nancy make dad’s tie from the same silk as my dress.”

Rebecca and James chose Ellen Spalding to officiate their wedding, noting “Our friend Genevieve Gannon is a writer and we asked her to write something about us for the ceremony. We didn’t give her any parameters, we knew she would write something brilliant – and the first time we heard her words were along with all the guests at the ceremony. Gen didn’t let us down, her words blew us away. James’s sister Natalie also read “If”, by Rudyard Kipling.
We also had a strongly worded smackdown of the part in the ceremony where marriage is between a man and a woman, as we both vehemently disagree with it, and want our gay mates to marry whoever they love.”

 Of their photographer, the newlyweds note “Ursula from Fennel and Fox snapped a wedding of a work colleague. I loved the pics so we hired her straight away. Ursula blended right in and was so much fun to work with.” 

The industrial setting of the substation and its surrounds were a highlight for the newlyweds who made a feature of it for their photographs. “I love old steam trains. We had our photos at the Steamrail yards, one shot of us walking between the engines looking like we are escaping from a crime in the early 20th century is a standout! Ursula sent it to us the night of our wedding as our ‘sneak peek’.”

Black, gold and red set the scene for a dramatic evening with a sit-down reception, Rebecca explaining “Cakesaurus made our wedding cake. Jimmy’s brother-in-law, Sam, happens to be an award-winning cake master. When he offered to make the cake we gave him free rein as we knew he’d do a stellar job. The cake tasted so good- it doubled as our dessert. It matched the whole look and feel of the wedding, I was stoked.

I couldn’t find anything that worked as seating plan, so I made one. I painted an easel black, a framed gold and printed out the table details on a thick cream stock. We assigned people to tables in groups, but let them decide where exactly to sit on the long benches, which was much easier than individually assigning seats.”

Stephen A Russell acted as MC, kicking off proceedings, with The Baker Boys  leading an evening of dancing.”Our Emcee, Stephen A Russell, was resplendent in a kilt from his native Scottish homeland and charmed the socks off everyone.

Having a band was important, the Baker Boys filled the dance floor all night. “Don’t Stop Believing” was the final song of the night and capped things off perfectly.”

Rebecca remarks “Our speeches were top-notch. We had eight – fathers of the bride and groom, our four attendants, and us separately. Speeches were all short, witty and hilarious. We knew everyone who spoke would do a cracking job and so many guests said the speeches were a highlight.” 

Guests enjoyed a feast catered by Blakes Feast. Rebecca noting “We had banquet-style platters from Blake’s Feast. Great food was a priority.”

Rebecca recalls “About halfway through the speeches, we went up to the mezzanine level of the Substation to watch everyone enjoying themselves down below. After planning every detail and looking forward to the event for months, it was great to have a moment to take it all in and give ourselves a pat on the back for a job well done!”

Of their first dance, Rebecca remembers “We danced to “Cry to Me” by Solomon Burke, which has always been our song.”

A big congratulations Rebecca and James! Thank you for sharing your beautiful day with us! Thank you also to Fennel & Fox Photography for sharing today’s wedding!