With deep moody hues, the hinterland of The Sunshine Coast showed off at its best for today’s beloved couple, Bonita & Ben. The pair making the most of the green forest backdrop for the vows, and the golden country light for their portraits. It was a day that celebrated all things simple & rustic (“We aimed for simplicity when choosing everything” says Bonita), all things family and all things love – and Stone & Wool Photography were right there to capture it all.

After meeting on an online dating site, Ben took the next step of asking Bonita to go on a date with him. She remembers “I said I wasn’t interested in dating at the time but was happy to meet, then we got along so well that I asked him out the next time!” Ben popped the question sometime later at the beautiful Cedar Creek. “We went out to Cedar Creek for a little picnic, while we were sitting on the rocks Ben says “what’s that over there?” Pointing behind me, when I turned back to him, he was half-kneeling down(in the water) with a ring out.”

“The groom dressed in all black with a burgundy tie”, says Bonita. “Ben had an idea of what style of the suit he wanted. When he went in he ended up choosing a black shirt with black vests as well, to go with burgundy ties. He felt comfortable and smart in this. He matched his and the groomsmen’s suits.”

Bonita’s beautiful gown was found at Exquisite Gowns by Yvonne. She remembers “The dress I chose was an ivory boho style. It was comfortable and I felt it fit me well. I am not much of a shopper so I only went to one wedding shop and had only tried on about five or so dresses before choosing.”

The beautiful floral arrangements on the day were thanks to Wild Rose Floral Co . Bonita’s sole request for velvet sunflowers, coming true.”The one thing I wanted was velvet sunflowers, she had some unfortunate trouble trying to grow them but managed to get a good two for the day, one went in my bouquet and one went on the arbour piece. My sister helped me pick out some other colours and Pele put them all together, she was amazing and the flowers were beautiful!

My florist was wonderful, growing the flowers herself for our day, she did a lot considering how unsure I was of what I wanted to be included.”

Bonita and Ben held their day – both the ceremony and reception at event venue Hideaway Weddings in Beerwah. “We aimed for simplicity when choosing everything. Our colour scheme was burgundy and had a real rustic feel to it.”

The couple decorated a table with special pieces to honour Ben’s mum, tells the bride “As Ben’s mother had passed away a few years ago we included a small table to include her, with a sign that read “because someone we love is in heaven, there’s a little bit of heaven at our wedding”. It wasn’t the only way the couple honoured family; Bonita’s engagement and wedding ring are Ben’s mothers, the bride also wearing a necklace and earrings on the day, that her father had made for her when she was born.

Bonita who walked down the aisle with her dad to “Bluebird” by Alexis French,  remembers the moments before she started walking, as some of her favourites. “While we were getting ready to start walking down the aisle, I felt very calm, one of the staff even commented how calm I looked. I just remember thinking about how I was about to marry a man I love. It felt perfect.”

Bonita and Ben were married overlooking the forest, by Kay Franks Celebrant. “The ceremony felt very peaceful. And quick. It was very quick as we only did the legal bare minimum which was perfect for us” remembers Bonita.” At the end of the ceremony, we walked back down the aisle to the song “The Entertainer”  with all the guests blowing bubbles. That was fun.”

The easy-going vibe of the day was complete when the couple chose their photographer, remembers Bonita. “Matt from Stone & Wool Photography was great. He was cheerful, friendly and made getting a million photos taken feel easy and fun. (We’re not very photogenic people!)”

Bonita created much of the decor herself. “I enjoy doing some papercraft so I made the seating plan charts, I also put together a bit of a craft table with the guest book, where our guests were encouraged to take a polaroid picture then glue it into the guest book and use a variety of papers, cut-outs, embellishments and stickers to decorate and leave a message. It turned out well.”

Bonita credits much of the success of the wedding to the community around them. “It was so special having so much help from everyone.” She shares “It was a really stressful experience and I’m not sure it would have come together if I didn’t have so much support from my bridesmaids and from the people we hired! Surround yourself with people who will support and help you through the process so you can stress less and enjoy the day!”

The couple’s first dance was as casual and romantic as the rest of the day, Bonita remembering “We did not practice any dancing, so we swayed, moving around in a circle for the duration of our song. It was a little awkward but we had a laugh or two. We danced to the song Sea of Love by Lily and Madeleine.”

Ada’s Tales created this beautiful film of the day unfolding.

Congratulations to the newlyweds! Thank you for sharing the stories of your beautiful day with us Bonita & Ben! Thank you also go to Stone & Wool Photography for sharing today’s beautiful celebration.