The charm of the country is always a stunner and it is completely in abundance today as we share the wedding, right by the beautiful Murray River of Gabby and Luke.

Australian beauty at its finest, and captured in all of its glory by Caity & Duncan this is a day that is about community. The couple making sure that this day wasn’t just about their own story, but paid special homage, to the people they love and adore in their lives. When you add stunning Australian native flowers, Autumnal colours and special touches, this is a day that is going to inspire endless moments in your own country day.

A blind date, set up by friends, turned out to be just what Gabby and Luke were both looking for, the pair filling us in on their story. “We met in May 2013 at a set-up blind date with friends. Gabby was shy and hardly spoke to Luke. She also said to her friend “I’m not into blonde-haired, blue-eyed guys.” That proved to be wrong.”

A normal Saturday morning, turned out to be not so normal, when Luke decided it was time to pop the question. “Luke proposed in a beautiful big garden, across from our favourite café in the suburb of East Malvern in Melbourne. Gabs was a bit confused why Luke seemed nervous and was wondering why he was making small talk about the weather on what otherwise was a pretty typical Saturday morning activity.”

Gabby chose a simple lace gown from designers Grace Loves Lace. She tells “I chose it because I loved the fit, it was comfortable and I knew I could really have a crack on the dancefloor. Complimenting my dress was a very long veil I borrowed from my sister in law. One thing I wanted was for my veil to flow in the wind, and it did just that!”

Beautiful Moama venue Murray Gums Estate had just the country charm Gabby & Luke dreamt of for their day. “We’d spent a few weekend trips from Melbourne to check out different venues in the Echuca/Moama area. As soon as we arrived at Murray Gums Estate we knew it was the venue for us. It had incredible views of the Murray River, plenty of space for a marquee, dance floor and mingling. This all was topped off by the venue owner, Dale, who is one of the most calming and helpful people we’ve ever met, plus there was the bonus of Chip, the dog. The venue on the day once it was set up was even better than we had imagined, courtesy of the hard work by Dale and the Mack+Mills girls. Dale at Murray Gums Estate should honestly be nominated for the best bloke in Australia. The venue feedback from guests was nothing but positive.”

The couple worked with Mack & Mills to execute their vision. “Our event stylists Mack+Mills were so helpful in planning the layout and setting up the venue.”

Says Luke “Cliché – but the moment I saw Gabs for the first time getting out of the car knocked me for six. My best man put his hand on my shoulder just as Gabs looked up and our eyes met for the first time.”

Gabby walked down the aisle with her father to Savage Garden’s “Truly Madly Deeply”.

The ceremony, officiated by Ruth Turpin was short and sweet. “We wanted it to be pretty quick for our guests and we wanted it to be fun, funny with a bit of the romance mixed into it. We definitely didn’t want it to be overly serious and too lovey. We made sure that our celebrant told our love story, but also introduced our wedding party individually and had plenty of light-hearted jokes built into the ceremony. We had a reading from one of the bridesmaids about two dinosaurs who were very different, but in time realised they were perfect for each other, despite the obvious differences. “A Lovely Love Story” by Edward Monkton.”

“The flowers I chose were all native to Australia, bright and with personality,” says Gabby of the blooms styled by Bryants Buds.

“Within reason, don’t get caught up in the cost / finer details of the day” advises Gabby. “It’s most likely the biggest day of your life and it’ll only happen once, so it’s not worth letting money be the reason you regret not including something. Luke is a Financial Planner, and it kills him to say he agrees with this. Gabs made a last-minute call to spend over $700 on a couch and a neon sign and it was a hit!”

Long tables were set in an onsite marquee for dinner. “The venue was essentially a blank canvas for us to design as we please. We hired everything externally and chose the layout of the entire venue (with assistance from the professionals of course). Gabs is huge on sustainability, so we actually purchased all of our glassware randomly from second-hand stores through the six months leading up to the wedding. This worked well with our mismatched wooden chairs and mismatched cutlery we had set up in the marquee. The bridesmaids and Gabs also created our own confetti by hole punching gum leaves, a tedious but rewarding task, leaving no plastic/paper/rice on the ground!”

Every moment of the reception was carefully considered, the wedding party each introduced by name. “We felt it was really important to introduce our wedding party individually during the ceremony. We stole this idea from good friends of ours who did this at their wedding. They are obviously standing up there for a reason and we really wanted them to know how important they were to us. Plus, it was important to us to have Stone & Wood beers for all.”

“Duncan and Caitlin were perfect for our wedding” tell the newlyweds of their chosen photographers. “We’d spent a bit of time looking at photographer options for our wedding and from the second we met them it was obvious that they were going to be the right choice. Such a professional team with an incredible eye for catching the moment. A dream to work with from the start. A great communicator who can capture the love without making it feel staged and awkward. They have an amazing talent and we are so glad they made the jump to pursue their passion for photography. Our wedding wouldn’t have been the same without them!”

Of their first dance, Gabby remembers “We chose “Dancing in the Moonlight” by Toploader. All of the guests were given sparklers to light and surround us as we danced outside (in the moonlight). Hard to choose a single moment, but this would be up there as the highlight of the night.”

The happy couple enlisted the help of Bluu Media House to have their day captured on film.

A big congratulations to you both Gabby & Luke! What a joyful day yours was to share. Thank you also to Caity & Duncan for sharing today’s beautiful images with us!