Maryanne & Seyi

Whimsical and romantic, Maryanne and Seyi’s Brisbane wedding is so beautiful, superlatives are difficult to come by! A fairytale in pastels and whites, with wild and organic floral pieces filling the rustic ceremony location, it’s an absolute dream! Mallory Sparkles captured the day.

After meeting at Friday’s Riverside, Seyi and Maryanne swapped contact details. The bride had a trip to New York booked, the groom to East Timor, but they kept in touch. She remembers, ”Upon returning, we met up again and talked for hours on end with such ease. I was impressed by how much of a gentleman he is and the fact he had his life priorities in order. It’s just so natural and organic being with Seyi and I always felt incredibly comfortable and free to be myself. One evening at Eat Street Markets against a backdrop of fairy lights and food stalls we finally had ‘the chat’ and made our relationship official and have been enjoying our adventures together ever since.”

Seyi proposed after asking the bride’s father for permission, and hunting for the perfect spot on the Gold Coast. Maryanne tells, ”As we approached the first lookout Seyi asked if I would like a photo with me looking out to the coast and endless ocean of blue. After I obliged, he told me to turn around and there he was, down on bended knee with the ring in hand asking me to be his wife!”

Maryanne’s gown was incredibly detailed in lace and embroidery, with long sleeves and a fingertip veil. Handmade by Pronovias, the bride found it at Luv Bridal & Formal. She shares, ”Each dress is made by hand and takes about 120 hours to finish. I loved the intricate embroidery which added to the uniqueness of the dress.” The groom wore a Peter Jacksons black tuxedo and bow tie.

Old Government House set a fairytale backdrop, complete with white carpet and delicate flowers framing the archway. The bride tells, ”We chose a heritage-listed oasis located at the university campus we both attended. We actually studied business at the same time and probably had a few of the same lectures but didn’t cross paths until much later. We said our vows underneath a beautiful big stone arch located in the intimate open-air courtyard that is nestled in the heart of the house.”

A truly personal ceremony was put together by the couple, celebrating their families. Maryanne shares, ”The ceremony was very intimate and quaint. We wanted it to be classic and traditional but still pay homage to our ancestry. My mum wore her traditional Filipino gown and the grooms parents wore their traditional Nigerian attire. One of my best friends read ‘An Uncommon Love’ by poet Terah Cox. I loved having one of my best friends from childhood choose a poem to read at our ceremony. I loved that she did her research and picked something from the heart. It made it all so much more meaningful! Seyi’s cousin read from 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. My wonderful father walked me down the aisle to Daniela Andrade’s ‘La Vie En Rose’, an acoustic remake of Edith Piaf’s signature song.”

Delicate and whimsical flowers were a stand out feature on the day, adding romance in a pastel palette. The bride remembers, ”We worked with Emilia from Bloodwood Botanica who is a sculptural floral designer based in Noosa. Her work is incredible and a real embodiment of fine art and it doesn’t hurt to mention that she was recently featured in Harpers Bazaar. She helped put-together a very unique bridal bouquet featuring bleached amaranthus to get its pure and crisp white colour whilst the texture provided a beautiful, soft, draping effect. I haven’t seen this done before and it just spoke of volumes of her creative flair. My bridesmaids had soft pink reflexed Columbian roses in a diminutive arrangement to complement my own. We wanted the overall look and feel of the wedding to encapsulate a classical and whimsical fairytale. We had dreamy palettes of whites with undertones of pastels to compliment the bridesmaids dresses all contrasted against wild garden foliage.”

Celebrating in style, the couple had a traditional Nigerian wedding the night before the ceremony. Maryanne remembers, ”It was very colourful and vibrant with lots of food and dancing to Nigerian music! My friend from Paris also wrote me a little card to open up and read while I was getting ready on the day! It was so incredibly thoughtful and brought tears to my eyes! I think the initial stages of conceptualising the style and theme was my favourite part of wedding planning. I loved pouring over magazines, blogs, and Pinterest for wedding inspiration – everything from the dress to decor. A lot of my friends were also getting married around the same time so it was nice to have some of my closest girlfriends to lean on during the process. It is such a fun and special time.”

Capturing the modern beauty of the day was photographer Mallory Sparkles. Maryanne tells, ”I came across her on Instagram while searching for local wedding photographers. When I clicked on her page, I immediately thought this is exactly who I want to work with! I instantly liked her light and airy style, her compositions and ability to capture key moments between couples and the fact that people looked so relaxed and natural in photos. I thought she must have a great personality to get the best out of people and I’m glad I was right. When we had our first interview we both knew she was the best person to entrust with capturing all our special moments on our wedding day. We also got some engagement photos which was a fantastic way for her to get to know us and vice versa. She is extremely talented, creative, warm, bubbly and so much fun! We were always laughing in her presence. I have been recommending her to all our friends ever since. She is the BEST!”

The reception was held at Stamford Plaza Brisbane, walking distance from the ceremony venue and right on the banks of Brisbane River. Maryanne tells of her favourite moments from the day, sharing ”There were so many, but definitely the best thing was having family and friends join us, especially those that had travelled long distances. One of our friends, in the middle of studying for her law exams, flew in from Paris, and my cousin and her family flew in from Los Angeles. Her children were one our flower girls and page boys. Members of Seyi’s family also joined us from London and Lagos. We could not be more grateful, celebrating with our friends and family are what made the day!!”

Getting crafty, the bride and groom did a little DIY for both the ceremony and reception. They tell, ”For the ceremony Maryanne made the petal cones to put the freeze dried rose petals in, which were thrown in the air as we exited down the aisle. We put together the wedding favours for the reception. Little chocolates wrapped up in gold box tied with delicate white ribbon to complement the table settings. We drove out to an Olive Farm at Pine Mountain to get all the foliage to dress the guests tables at the wedding reception. We also had a DIY Photo Booth where guests could take a polaroid and stick it in the guestbook with a hand-written message to help us capture memories and well-wishes on the night. Our first dance was to ‘At Last’ by Beyonce, also another remake of one of Etta James’ most successful songs.”

Thank you to our gorgeous bride and groom for sharing your wedding day with us, and congratulations! Thank you also to Mallory Sparkles and Storyteller Films for your magnificent images!