We are absolutely head over heels for Beth & Dan’s Campside Lovin’ Snowy Mountains Micro Wedding captured by Alexandra Moore! After having to cancel two planned weddings (thanks to COVID, of course!) we love that the couple were able to create their perfect day on their third attempt – camp side micro reception included! Sometimes when things seem too difficult, you just need a shared lightbulb moment to make you realise exactly what you need to create a wedding that suits you as a couple, which is exactly what Beth & Dan did. Beth tells us about their day…
I am Beth (bride) and the gorgeous man next to me in these images is Dan, my husband. We both live in the NSW Snowy Mountains and we’re excited to share our camp side micro-wedding with you. We met through a mutual friend 6 years ago when Dan was living in a tiny house and I was living in a caravan on opposite sides of the lake. We instantly and wholeheartedly fell for each other. Dan grew up in the mountains and I moved from Sydney chasing the snow and then stayed chasing Dan. We welcomed our beautiful daughter, Winnie, whilst living in the tiny house together before well and truly outgrowing it as we welcomed another squishy little lady into our lives, Bobbi.
After 2 cancelled covid weddings in 2 years, we FINALLY tied the knot in a beautiful and intimate weekend away. Our first wedding was cancelled 2 weeks out – it was just as Covid had hit Australia. Our original guest list of 160 was brought down to just 30 by the time we were actually married, with immediate family and closest friends joining us for a secret camping weekend in the mountains.
Neither of us is a showy person, the idea of having so many people at our wedding always made us a little uncomfortable. But because I have such a huge family (80 on my side), it was always going to have to be a big affair. As we sat down for the third time to plan our wedding, it was like we had a lightbulb moment at the same time and thought “why?” Why put on such a show when it’s not us? So we settled on a very small group to join us in our favourite place ever. And I guess that’s number two silver lining – because it was truly perfect, and just totally us. It was casual, carefree, incredibly wholesome and just a downright fun time! And it was truly something to have both our girls standing by our side at our wedding – just one of the silver linings of our cancelled covid plans.
The day of the ceremony was stunning! We were married in March this year, in the middle of a La Nina, so we were very lucky to score a sunny, 30-degree day. We got dressed by our camper, my beautiful friends did my make-up and with no power, there wasn’t much to be done with my hair but wash it in the river and hope for the best! We had cocktails and nibbles beforehand under a gazebo in the bush with all the guests, then I disappeared to get my dress on and get the flower girls ready (because white dresses, kids and campsites do not mix) whilst everyone headed out to the airstrip with their camp chairs.
A bit about the dress: I had my sights set on the most beautiful tiered, silk organza skirt from Sydney bridal designer, L’eto Bridal. I don’t know how I came across her, but I knew straight away it had to be mine. We went to Sydney for the weekend to try it on – my daughter, mum, mother-in-law, sister and sister-in-law all came with me. My top was custom-made by a beautiful friend, Elle Hopewood, who is a local talented seamstress. I wanted something a bit show-stopping – puff sleeves, sheer organza and a sparkle bralette from Kat the Label did the trick!
Dan wore an MJ Bale check suit jacket, simple chinos and his R.M. Williams. It took a whole day of shopping with his dad and brother (which is a hilarious combo for a shopping trip in itself as none of them were particularly interested in clothes) to get it right. But he nailed it with the green check, after a quick face time pep talk with my sister-in-law. He originally picked a full suit, but when we changed the wedding to a camp weekend, his chinos were a better fit. He’s a country guy, so his outfit was the perfect amount of casual comfort, but with a touch of class. And boy, did he look handsome!
The backdrop of the mountains was our muse – and what a muse she was! We had a simple arrangement of silver dollar eucalyptus stems (which we picked from my mother-in-law’s tree) and leucadendrons that I arranged into hand-painted white vases and my bouquet was a mix of red natives. I’m not a big floral person – but I knew I wanted a pop of red. I walked down the runway with my Mum and Dad to “Sweet Thing” by Van Morrison. The runway was lined with our favourite people sitting in camp chairs and I walked towards Dan, my girls and the mountains that mean so much to us.
Antoinette, our celebrant, is a dear friend of my husband’s family. She was with us for the entire journey from the first planned wedding to the last. She’s incredible! So easy to talk to, and so relatable and she definitely gets some bonus points for her pink hair. When things got a little tough and we were deciding what to do about round 3, she sat us down and calmed our nerves. We were nervous about having a micro wedding and hurting a lot of friends’ and family’s feelings, but in the end, she reminded us that it is our day and that after 2 cancelled attempts, people would understand.
We had my sister as my maid of honour and Dan’s brother as his best man. And of course, our daughters as flower girls. It was a very simple, stripped-back ceremony – we didn’t do readings but did write our own vows. If I can give anyone any advice, it’s to write your own vows. It can be such a daunting experience, but it is incredible to hear what you both come up with. Weddings can easily become about everyone else – but at that moment, it’s all about you, and everyone else just melts away.
Geehi Flats Campground is in a remote area of Kosciuszko National Park in the NSW Snowy Mountains. It’s the first trip we took together when we started dating, the first family holiday we took with our daughter and the first place we head every year as soon as the snow melts. We were married on the airstrip, so not only did I get to walk down a literal runway, but it’s also special because my Grandfather used to land on that strip when he was a pilot during the Snowy Scheme days. There’s no reception, no power – it’s a truly raw and untouched area. There are kangaroos grazing everywhere, platypi in the river, unbeatable views of the western faces of the Kosciuszko Main Range and it’s hard to beat a swim and float in the (always freezing) river!
After the ceremony, everyone headed straight to the river to cool off. It was HOT, like very hot during the ceremony. Those spicy margaritas tasted extra special and well-deserved with our toes in the cool water!
The flower girls were wearing beautiful little white linen, puff-sleeved sets from Australian designer Marlow and Mae. My eldest had a sparkle ribbon in her hair which was an off-cut from her original flower girl dress that she no longer fit. Dan picked her boots to match his – cute! My sister wore a linen white suit which we picked together. As she was walking down the aisle with both the girls, we opted for a buttonhole instead of a bouquet so that her hands were free for all her chief kid wrangler duties.
My beautiful friend, Alex, is a photographer, and this is her incredible work. She was there as a friend first and photographer second so we asked she only take images of the ceremony and portraits (she also had her 6-week-old son with her!). The rest we captured on disposable films and polaroids. Neither of us is overly confident in front of a camera, so it was special to have Alex there guiding us and working with us in such a casual and personal manner. We’re pretty fortunate in the creative, talented friend department so there are a few extra images in there from them acting as Alex’s assistants!
We spent the night dancing under the fairy lights, Dan cooked up the world’s BEST burgers on the BBQ and we had a simple Krispy Kreme stack as the cake. Our first dance was to ‘Real Love Baby’ by Father John Misty. It was all very DIY, I’m a bit of a party planner at my core, and only sometimes ask for help.
The day after the ceremony it poured with rain – and I mean all day long. The kids were perpetually wet and muddy, and a lot of the adults too. We still can’t believe our luck with the wedding day weather. The rain was fun though, it forced everyone under cover to sit and chat and just be present, it felt like a real camp trip then.
It was such a special experience, one that just felt so right for us. In the hope to share that feeling with others, I have gone on to start my own elopement business called The Runaways. I’ve teamed up with a few talented and creative friends to share the magic of the mountains with other couples. We’ve had our first few couples through and I think I have finally found my calling. Silver lining number 3!
Thank you to Beth & Dan for sharing their absolutely beautiful day with us, and to Alexandra Moore for the breathtaking photography!