Kate & Matt

“We’re both pretty laid back people, and love the space and fresh air of the country. Luckily, we both had pretty much always had the same vision for the wedding – rustic country.” Wild open countryside has to be one of the ultimate wedding locations, and it has set the scene beautifully as today’s newlyweds Kate & Matt says their vows amongst their favourite people.

The pair, who live in Perth, planned their New South Wales wedding, captured beautifully by Rachel H Photography, in just a few weeks, inviting just 38 guests, they celebrated all weekend long and it was the most beautiful beginning to a new chapter of the story for these two who met online.

It all started, when Matt made a very special video. Kate explains ” We went camping at Dwellingup in WA, a couple of hours south of where we live. After camping Friday night we went for a walk early Saturday morning down to the nearby river, where Matt had set up a spot on an old fallen down tree. I definitely wasn’t looking my best after sleeping in a swag for the night, all rugged up in track pants and a beanie, drinking tea out of a plastic cup. He sat me down on the tree and handed me a tablet and disappeared. On it was the most amazing proposal video he had made for me to watch, and after it was finished he reappeared and got down on one knee for the actual proposal. It was the perfect Aussie bush proposal! The engagement was quite short actually… we were planning to get married next year but then I (Kate) got offered a job in the USA, and we really wanted to be married before we left. We pretty much planned the whole wedding in a month!”

Kate found her gown on a trip to Sydney, choosing a Veromia designed gown from Perfect Day Bridal. She shares “My dress was such a surprise find! I’d begun looking in Perth but was blown away by how expensive everything was, and the lack of choice for winter brides. I also only had a matter of weeks to buy something, so also needed something off the rack that could be altered if needed. I ended up finding my gown in Sydney when I was doing a quick trip over a couple of weeks before the wedding. It was on a sale rack, and to be honest, it looked pretty average on the rack! But Tania, the boutique owner, said every dress looks entirely different on so suggested I give it a try. And she was so right! It was perfect on, and the beading on the bodice gave it a beautiful winter wonderland feel.”

Kate walked down the aisle on the arm of her father to Etta James’ “At Last”.

Kate McDonough officiated proceedings, Kate and Matt tell “We wanted our ceremony to be personal, but still have traditional elements. We included some personal stories about how we met, when we fell in love, our dreams for the future; but our vows to each other were a more traditional style. Kate’s sisters did a reading called ‘Marriage is a Thousand Little Things’ by Darlene Schacht.”

Despite living in Western Australia, the couple chose the country venue of Collits Inn for their wedding, the bride noting “Our families are both from New South Wales. Since we were having a quick, small wedding we figured it was easier for us to fly over, rather than ask guests to fly to WA. Because we planned it so quickly and needed to lock in the venue for the date and celebrant, we had to plan pretty much everything just by looking online. We did mountains of online research, and photographer blogs and review sites were invaluable in helping to choose. We wanted a venue that had everything in the one spot – accommodation, ceremony, reception, and something rustic feeling as well as a spot for amazing photos! Collits Inn fit the bill perfectly, and the part that made it really amazing for us was all the theming props they already had on-site. It was exactly what we were after and suited our style perfectly.”

Matt reminisces “Kate looked amazing and even better than I imagined since she had such a short time to find the dress.”

Of their photographer, Kate remarks “Rachel was fantastic to work with. Even given the short time we were working with, we were able to meet before the wedding to discuss the day, and Rachel was very flexible with finalising logistics. We’re both very happy with the beautiful photos captured from our day.”

Kate and Matt worked with The Little Flower Shop on their flowers, telling “I loved the flowers for our wedding – the pieces were created by Olivia from The Little Flower Shop. We really wanted to use primarily native flowers, with some pink and burgundy colours mixed in to suit our rustic winter wedding.”

The last-minute nature of the day did not phase Kate and Matt’s vendors, they tell “All our vendors were stand out! We were calling people 3-4 weeks before the wedding – this is usually when vendors are asking you to have every detail locked in! I was amazed at how supportive and flexible everyone was, and so helpful with advice and recommendations. I don’t think we were able to give the run sheet to the photographer and venue until a few days before the wedding, as well as finalising the ceremony with our celebrant. We would both like to say a big thank you to everyone who helped make our dream wedding come to life on such short notice!”

Kate and Matt note “We’re happy that didn’t cut back on too many things. Initially, we were thinking it’s a small, quick wedding so we shouldn’t do or spend too much – simple dress, don’t get much in the way of flowers, only have a short photography package etc. But then we thought this is the only wedding we’re doing – and we wanted it perfect for us even though we were planning it quickly! And we’re both so happy we did everything we did. The photos are going to bring us and our families beautiful memories for years.”

The rustic styling of the venue was part of its the charm for Kate and Matt, who didn’t add much to it. They tell “We personalised the venue a bit by putting up photos around the place, and also put together a bucket of blankets for guests to keep warm as it was a chilly winter wedding. One thing Kate’s sister made that was great was a ‘Tips for the Newlyweds’ jar. We used this instead of a guest book, and everyone left us tips for a happy marriage. It was beautiful reading them later and reminiscing (and laughing lots – there were definitely some good ones!).”

Guests gathered inside the rustic barn. Says Kate “It was a bit stressful trying to plan our dream wedding from the other side of the country in a month, but I still loved it (I love planning and organising… I actually work as a Mine Planner so it’s in my blood!). It was great seeing all the details come together to create our dream wedding. Although one of the best parts was our first visit to our venue at Collits Inn – we were doing a food & wine tasting for our wedding menu. The food was absolutely delicious, and it was beautiful sitting in front of the fire in the barn on a cold day. We knew straight away we’d chosen the perfect venue for us. Great way to relax after all the running around planning everything.”

Matt’s mum took charge of the wedding cake, making it herself. Matt says “One of my favourite details

was our wedding cake. My Mum made it for us and put so much time and energy into making it perfect. I can’t thank her enough!”

It wasn’t the dance (to Chris Young’s  Who I am With You) that was the highlight of the couple’s debut, it was the moment. Matt explains  “We’d had one dancing lesson in Perth prior to the wedding, and had been practising of an evening when we could, but we still couldn’t get it quite right. But on the night we were just so happy together, and just watching each other not thinking about the steps, we did it perfectly for the first time!”

A big congratulations to Kate and Matt! Thank you for sharing your beautiful stories with us! Thank you also to Rachel H Photography for sharing today’s imagery with us!