Ash & Adam’s Charming & Intimate Mount Warning Garden Wedding

by | Australia - New South Wales, Bride, Inspired Weddings,

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Ash & Adam

We always knew we wanted an intimate, relaxed wedding, with things kept simple but beautiful.” Ash and Adam did their wedding day their way. And by that we mean, a thirty person guestlist, tequila shots post-wedding vows, thongs as wedding shoes. Thanks to the talented Bird and Boy Photography, this cocktail wedding is every bit feel good as your hump day needs, and we’re so ready for it.
And that? That is a little slice of wedding heaven to cross your screen today. “We wanted the focus to be on the people and the party” explains the beautiful bride. “It was important to us to have an outdoor wedding, amongst the trees and mountains, where we could totally relax and kick off our shoes (well – Birkenstocks and Havi’s haha!) and dance under the stars to our favourite banging music. We had some sweet Australian native flowers and fairy lights surround us, and bats flying above us as we drank local gin and coffee martinis all night.”

And as delightful as the wedding was, it turns out these two began their lives together with the same kind of charm, says Ash “Adam and I met when I was 19 and he was 21 at a friend’s dress-up party. I was dressed as Little Red Riding Hood and he was Ace Ventura. He loved my red hair and smile, while I was obsessed with how tall, handsome and charming he was. We danced and laughed all night, shared our stories and sweet kisses and have been inseparable ever since.”

Adam popped the question by the sea. “On our 4th anniversary Adam surprised me with a little getaway and while at the beach where we had our first date, he proposed with one knee in the sand. I was so shocked I laughed in his face and kept asking him if he was serious. After he put the ring on my finger and said he had been planning this for two years I started crying. It was such a funny moment. Everyone was telling me he was going to propose and I didn’t believe it would happen for several years, so when it happened I was just in absolute shock.”

Guests had their first hint of what was to come with wedding invitations delivered, designed by One Sweet Day Invites. “We wanted to keep things as minimal as possible so Clair Olarenshaw from One Sweet Day Invites on Etsy designed our invite and I printed it out myself” explains the bride. “It featured some of our favourite Australian flowers that were also part of our arbour arrangement. As the invite was simple, and we had not even 30 guests attending, we communicated with everyone primarily by a private Facebook group. It was a fun way to share information, as well as building excitement along the way with the constant wedding chat and banter.”

Ash commissioned Lottie and Folk to create a special piece for the day She explains ” As our wedding was interstate our two dogs Archer and Arlo weren’t able to be with us, so I thought it would be sweet to have this stitch made so that we could have family wedding pictures together. I sent off some pictures of our little family, plus what we would be wearing on the day and she created the most wonderful little wedding stitch of our family that now hangs on our wall.”

Ash and Adam ditched the “not seeing each other before the wedding” tradition. “Adam and I spending the whole day together was one of our favourite parts,” says Ash. “We fell asleep together the night before, we woke up together the morning of, and we spent the whole day together getting ready in the lead up to the actual ceremony and reception. We couldn’t imagine not spending all that time together. Throughout the day we were sharing cuddles and kisses.”

The wedding decor was very much a family affair, tells Ash “Adam’s mum and dad picked up our flowers from Flowers at the Farm and along with our friends hung our arbour arrangement and set out the rest of our flowers and greenery in jars. We also spent a few hours with Adam’s mum and dad in the lead up to the wedding hole punching little love hearts and stars into gum leaves from their property. My mum brought up some dried lavender and rose petals and we mixed that and the gum pieces to make some colourful eco confetti.”

“Having such a small wedding meant we really got to spend time with everyone and not feel rushed or stressed to get to a million different people. We really did feel so relaxed the whole time. While us girls had our hair and makeup done that morning, the boys were sitting across from us playing video games. People were coming and going and there was such a buzz in the air, but there was no stress at all. It was just excitement and joy.”

Ash surprised even herself with her last-minute choice of dress, she settled on a piece from Needle & Thread. Telling the story “I originally had a vintage 70’s gown from The Vintage Bride in Adelaide. It is such a beautiful little boutique and I found this first gown there a month after we got engaged and I was obsessed. The girls there are so lovely and I had such a lovely day there with my best friend and mum.

However, seven weeks before our wedding, after having this dress hanging in my wardrobe for nearly five years, I realised that perhaps as I felt like a different person now, that I would like a different dress also. I didn’t want to make a fuss so I just browsed some online stores and stumbled upon this beige and off-white Needle & Thread lace gown on ASOS. It was delivered to my door two days later and I knew the second I put it on that it was the one. As our wedding was outdoors, amongst the trees and leaves, I chose to wear my comfiest shoes- my Havaianas thongs. I felt like an elegant, yet bohemian mountain queen.”

For Adam’s look? The groom kept it casual, says Ash. “Adam wore a simple white linen shirt, with beige chinos. For our ceremony, he wore his Havaianas as well, whilst for the party afterwards, he changed into some cuffed shorts and Birkenstocks. Many of our guests also changed into their shorts and Birks after, and it was great knowing everybody was so comfortable and relaxed in what they were wearing. By the end of the evening, many of us had even kicked our shoes off altogether and were running around dancing barefoot.”

Ash and Adam chose Mavis’s Kitchen for their wedding, noting “We fell in love with Mavis’s after seeing stunning photos of the beautiful old homestead, the gardens, the food, Mount Warning- everything about it! We booked without having even been there in person and upon visiting shortly afterwards we knew it was the right venue for us. It was nearby where Adam grew up in the Tweed Valley so we loved the idea of having our Adelaide friends and family come up and get to see where he grew up. We loved that we could all stay together in the cabins and really experience the beauty and peace of the mountains.”

Ash and Adam made it a point to walk down the aisle together. “We are a team and having overcome so much to get to this point it felt right for us to walk down the aisle together. It was a such a sweet moment for the two of us” says Ash. The couple chose Jack River’s version of Savage Garden’s “Truly Madly Deeply”.

“We all walked down to the ceremony spot together, ” remembers Ash, who together with Adam, chose Modern Love Ceremonies – Cara Gallagher to officiate the day. “Once everyone was seated Adam and I walked down the aisle. It was so special; we held hands, laughed and danced our best finger gun dance through the middle of our group of loved ones, as they clapped and cheered for us. We read out vows that we wrote together, filled with stories and jokes about our life, our love for each other and our dogs, and we surprised our guests with a cheeky tequila shot they had to do with us to conclude the ceremony.

Before the wedding, we each had to come up with 10 things we love about the other, and secretly send them to our celebrant, Cara. After a Welcome to Country, and a welcome to our guests, Cara then kicked things off by reading out what we had sent to her, and it was such a funny, sweet part of the ceremony. We didn’t want any readings, we just wanted to have our own words, stories and vows that we had written to be the focus of our ceremony. We just wanted it to be simple, fun and meaningful to us.”

“Aside from secretly writing 10 things we loved about the other, our entire vows we wrote as a team.” shares Ash, “We didn’t want to just recite traditional words used over and over, we wanted them to be meaningful to us, and relevant to our life and journey so far. We don’t take things too seriously and love joking with each other (and at the expense of each other) so sitting down and writing some heartfelt, but also funny words was a special thing to do together. Hearing our friends and family laughing throughout our ceremony at our little stories and vows was just the best.”

Let’s talk blooms! Ash and Adam worked with Flowers at the Farm for their day, telling “Ros at Flowers at the Farm, Bangalow, made up a beautiful arbour arrangement with lots of greenery, and a king protea, while my flower crown had some smaller natives and blue gum. We also had some loose bunches in jars made up of banksias, purple haze leucadendron and Geraldton wax. We just wanted lots of Australian natives and greenery and we were stoked with what we ended up having. We were able to keep a lot of it and we now have it dried in our home as a lovely memento of the day.”

 

Ash and Adam surprised their guests with a shot of tequila. to toast to their marriage together.

This is a vendor dream team Ash and Adam completely recommend. “We feel so blessed to have had everyone come together so well to create the perfect day for us – they were all standouts!

Peter Clarke and Sharon Cunynghame from Mavis’s Kitchen were incredible. Peter and Sharon went above and beyond to make sure Adam and I had the perfect day. We are so grateful for all their help.

Cara Gallagher from Modern Love Ceremonies was absolutely amazing and we loved her energy. Our day was all about being stress-free and having fun and Cara helped us feel totally relaxed every step of the way.

Scott from Storyteller Films was also fantastic to work with. He totally understood our vibe and we barely even noticed him there. We are obsessed with our wedding film and all the other footage he took and we can’t thank him enough for really capturing the mood of the day. The same goes for Jerome from Bird and Boy- I can’t explain how grateful we are to have had him there to capture those moments. He is just such a talented guy.

Ros from Flowers at The Farm, Marley Hammond our make-up artist, and Sarah Kelly our hairstylist… all of these individuals were so easy going, easy to communicate with and easy to connect with and they all contributed to our day in exactly the way I hoped and I am so glad we went with them. ”

Adam’s favourite wedding day memory? “Just marrying Ash. Just staring at her.. and then once it was all finished going back to our cabin and making 2-minute noodles before bed”.

These two could really not have loved their choice of photographer more. “He is just amazing. Adam grew up with Jerome and so having him there as our photographer, but also as a long time friend was great. Jerome knew so many of our guests, he walked in the door and it wasn’t like he was there to take photos – he was just there to celebrate with us too. Our hearts are so happy with the photos he took. We didn’t want any formal photos, preferring more candid snaps, and Jerome did such an amazing job at capturing all of the beautiful moments of our day without it feeling staged. He just hung out and was there for all the laughter and fun. We also had a cute little engagement session a few months before the wedding with him which was so much fun and helped Adam and me to feel comfortable in front of the camera. We would definitely encourage couples to do that if they are able.”

“We had the ceremony in the shaded trees by the creek, while our reception was on the lawn in the gardens beside the homestead. At dusk, we also ducked off briefly with our photographer and videographer to the hill that faces Mount Warning and we got to capture some lovely moments as the clouds parted and the sunset on the valley. Mount Warning is known as Wollumbin by the Bundjalung People and translated means “cloud catcher” so to get some photos as the clouds surrounded and then parted around the mountain was magical. It was such a special moment.”

 

“Do things your way” advises Ash to couples yet to walk down the aisle. “Don’t feel pressure to conform to what society expects you to do. It’s 2020 and we have the power to define our own weddings and what marriage is for us. Traditional wedding ideals didn’t sit with us so we knew it was best for us to throw them out the window and make our day exactly how we wanted it to be, and we had the most amazing experience because of it. Relax and just lean into the fun and excitement of the day, but make sure to steal some time away together to soak in the moment.” This moment also led to one of Ash’s favourite photos of the day (below). “I remember we were laughing so hard, totally in the moment together.”

Ash and Adam made more of a holiday of their wedding for their guests, explaining “We always envisaged our wedding as a “wedstival” where we would have time before and after the actual wedding day to celebrate and it was just the best time. Most of our guests from Adelaide were on the same flight up to the Gold Coast together and then as everybody started arriving at Mavis’s the fun continued. We all had dinner and drinks the night before, and then spent all of the wedding day together, and then the next few days we spent time at Adam’s parent’s house, as well as showing them some beautiful spots in the valley. It wasn’t just one day of fun, it was like we were on a big group holiday together.”

“The simplicity of it all was what we loved. All that mattered was Adam and I finally having and sharing this beautiful moment with our friends and family. There was no stress over unnecessary things. It was just a day where we all got to relax together, have fun together and share the love.”

The first dance? Utterly romantic remembers Ash. “We danced to ODESZA’s version of Hayden James’ “Something About You”. We had just cut our cake when our song came on and we wrapped our arms around each other and had a little boogie, cheesily gazing into each other’s eyes, smiles beaming on our faces. I remember I kept saying to him that I wanted to stay there and stare at him all night. It was perfect.”

There to capture this beautiful wedding on video was Storyteller Films.

A big congratulations to the newlyweds! Thank you for sharing your beautiful wedding day with us. Thanks also to Bird and Boy Photography for sharing today’s beautiful celebration.

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