Sarah & Jason

It took us 10 years to walk down the aisle and we did it at the same church, on the same day, 45 years after my parents. And five years to the day after Jason proposed. The 26th of August was also perfect because it meant we could have our winter wedding. We knew that we wanted a classic and formal wedding and set the scene with our invites. They were classic black and white with a touch of sparkle. This was the first DIY project of the wedding and I spent hours guillotining all the inserts!

I also knew that I wanted a dress with sleeves. I was set on getting my dress designed but mum insisted that we have the ‘say yes to the dress’ experience. So an appointment was booked at Raffaele Ciucca and after trying on two dresses, the Sottero & Midgley gown really stood out for its colour and feel. This was together with a crying mother of the bride! So, I bit the bullet and made the quickest decision I have ever made – and purchased the dress. I also purchased extra lace and tulle and had significant alterations made to the dress including the addition of the sleeves and details on the back. While this was a bit of a risk, the result was a unique ‘more than perfect’ dress. The dress was ivory with a pewter beading. I teamed the dress with a cathedral length veil with scallop detail and beading around the edges that added a beautiful vintage glamour to the look.

I accessorised the dress with Swarovski earrings and my shoes were Ted Baker – a nude pair with gemstone details for the ceremony and a black pair with a bow for the reception. I had toyed with the idea of a black wedding dress, but opted for a second pair of shoes because I just couldn’t decide on one pair and wanted to incorporate black into my outfit somehow.

One of the most memorable moments of the day was my brother and my 91-year-old Nonno seeing me in my dress for the first time and I’m so thankful our photographer caught this exact moment on camera! My bridesmaids wore classic floor-length black gowns with a touch of beading on the top which nicely tied them into my dress. I found these dresses on sale and purchased them without the bridesmaids seeing or trying them on! Luckily they were good sports, liked the dresses and they fitted perfectly with minor alterations. My bridesmaids were friends that I have known since kindergarten, year 7 and the first day of university. They all did a marvellous job of putting up with my bossiness in the lead up to the wedding and keeping me calm on the day.

It was really special for me to be able to get ready at home. The morning flew as we sipped champagne and had hair and makeup done by the fabulous Taneia at Gloss Make up & Beauty and Tamara & Michaela from Tamara’s Hair Boutique. I envisaged a vintage style hairdo with warm makeup and a bold nail and lip look in moody winter hues. The hair and beauty teams knew what I wanted and made it happen, as well as going the extra mile to make sure things were perfect.

As a gift for our wedding, Jason bought me a charm bracelet with charms of significance – like a cat, as we are both a bit cat mad and totally in love with our cat Belle. My favourite detail of the day was the flowers by The Rutherglen Wedding Co.! I love flowers and our florist produced the most beautiful moody winter hued blooms I could imagine. Not to mention the beautiful florals at the reception.

The Groom and Groomsmen wore classic black dinner suits with tuxedo shirts and black bow ties and suspenders. We loved this classic look and it suited our venue perfectly. The boys spent several days picking out their suits, attending fittings and picking up their suits – all providing for a great excuse to catch up and have a beer!! The suits were purchased from Liddis Tailors on Bridge Road in Richmond. The boys all came to Wangaratta and stayed for a week before the wedding where they just chilled out, did any last minute preparation and speech writing and drank whiskey!

My ring was made by the amazing team at Windfall Jewellery. It was a replica of the ring I chose when we first became engaged – in fact, it was the first of thousands of photos I pinned on Pinterest! I had a pair of simple cufflinks made for Jason with our wedding date engraved on them – now he has no excuse to forget our wedding date!

Our wedding was held at St. Patrick’s church in Wangaratta. I was shaking as I walked down the aisle of the church to an amazing vocal version of Amazing Grace, all the while, seeing Jason at the end of the aisle. It was the perfect entrance I imagined. I insisted in arriving in my father in law’s 1964 MG convertible – despite serious concerns about whether my dress would actually fit in the car, we made it!

The show was stolen by my adorable flower girl, who had been practising for weeks. At 3 years old, she had perfected the slow walk, looking side to side to the ‘audience’, and had the perfect pose at the end of the aisle.

Jason at times gets told he looks like Ed Sheeran so to be a bit cheeky, we chose Ed Sheeran’s song – ‘Perfect’ to walk out of the church as a married couple! Not to mention it was the perfect song.

We were very lucky to have family and friends who owned classic cars (1964 MG convertible, Classic Mustang and Classic Ford Fairmont) and a WWII Tiger Moth aeroplane who let us use these cars and aeroplane for our special day. The over cast skies and rolling clouds provided for some spectacular photos that we could not have imagined would turn out so dramatically beautiful. after

After the ceremony we arranged for buses to take our guests out to All Saints Estate in Wahgunyah for the reception. We fell in love with this venue after attending a wedding there a few years ago and knew that it was where we had to have our reception. The venue has this beautiful long driveway lined with 200-year-old trees. We loved the bare tree branches and bare vines at All Saints. The building itself is a beautiful old building from the 1800’s, built to model an English castle. Our reception was in the Great Hall. The room is lined by wine barrels and has 5 pot bellied stove heaters, some of which were lit to provide a warm atmosphere to the room.

Our wedding didn’t have a particular theme but we knew how we wanted it to feel. We wanted to play upon the fact it was a winter wedding. Think dimly lit rooms, candlelight and deep moody reds and purple. We also wanted it to be glamorous and have a touch of vintage! Think sparkle, vintage furniture and tall floral displays. Katie from The Rutherglen Wedding Company was on the same page and I put my trust in her to deliver the feel and the vibe and boy did she deliver! I was lost for words when I saw the room (and that doesn’t happen often!). We’re told that people were in complete awe when they walked into the room.

Our cake was made by the wonderful Angela from Little Red Robyn Cakes. It was tall and dramatic and looked amazing on the wine barrel. Plus, it tasted pretty amazing too! Our guests enjoyed amazing food from the Terrace Restaurant at All Saints, complemented by wines from their winery. We served perfect winter food – one of our mains was slow cooked lamb shoulder and our dessert was a pudding with whiskey caramel sauce.

Guests left us special messages by signing barrel lids from All Saints Estate which we will frame and put in our new house. They also enjoyed a photo booth from The Vintage Booth. People laughed and cried their way through our speeches, carved up the dance floor with us and made it a night to remember. People were entertained by Liam Blunts Funky Rhythm Train who played a series of Jazz sets and later classic dance songs.

The evening was Emceed by Jason’s Uncle and his young cousin who spoke with real warmth and brought the evening together. We both love a bit of old world Hollywood Glamour so the night would not have been complete without Elvis. Our first dance was to ‘The Wonder of You’ with the family dances to Etta James – ‘At Last’.

Family is a very important part of our lives. Sadly, shortly after we were engaged, my father passed away suddenly. The day was filled with sweet touches to honour him such as a charm on my bouquet with my favourite photo and a quote that said ‘walk with me today and always’. One of my flower girls carried a balloon down the aisle and after the ceremony, we released that balloon. And finally, as our bomboniere, we gave everyone a white resin origami crane shaped Christmas tree ornament purchased from the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation.

One of the best decisions was to have a photographer for the entire day. Shev was AMAZING! He made us feel so comfortable. I knew that I wanted him to be our photographer from when I first came across his work because of the drama of his shots and the ability to capture the colour and detail with such clarity.

Ms Zebra Says: How gorgeous a setting than rural Victoria to have a Winter Wedding! Thanks to Sarah and Jason for sharing their beautiful day with us – what a treat to have not only cars but a plane as well!! It truly looked like the perfect Winter’s day!