Filled with colour, and nods to the couple’s Ghanaian & Filipino heritage, Sarah and Gyimaah made the most of their COVID-affected wedding plans and embraced every bit of joy they could. With Hilary Cam and the county setting enhanced by beautiful florals in vivid yellows, pinks and oranges, there was nothing left to do than hit the couple’s wedding day brief of “a fun, colourful big party”!
The pair first came to be on Tinder! Remembers Sarah “I was drawn to Gyimaah’s playful photos full of laughter and he loved that I was a gamer because he wouldn’t be in trouble for playing too long. Little did he know that it just meant his now wife is always gaming and he has to watch.”
Gyimaah swept Sarah off her feet by proposing when she thought they were celebrating her new promotion at work. “We were going somewhere nice so we dressed to impress, heels included, which if you know me is a feat in itself. As we were driving there he suddenly declared there was just something we needed to pick up quickly. We were nowhere near the restaurant and I was getting hungry! As I get out of the car I start complaining – is it a long walk, did I need to wear my heels, will it be quick?
We then arrive at a dance studio. Now, Gyimaah has pulled romantic stunts off before so no alarm bells were ringing yet. I just follow him up these stairs into one of the dance studios and when the doors open I am greeted by two dancers accompanied by a harpist in a dry iced filled room. In the middle of the room is the cutest chair and table set up where I get to watch the two dancers. They then come over and hand me an envelope where Gyimaah had asked to Marry Me. Gyimaah has been promising to take me to the ballet all year and so he finally brought the ballet to me.”
The couple chose Bloom Films to capture a beautiful motion film of the day unfolding. “Our videographer, Isaac, from Bloom Films made sure we enjoyed the little moments” remembers Sarah. ” He also went over and above helping Gyimaah with his second outfit as he struggled with some of his accessories.”
The scene was well and truly set with bright & colourful flower details styled by The Lillipillian. Says Sarah “Flowers were very important to me. I stalked a lot of Instagram accounts before I found The Lillipillian. I saw a multicultural wedding she had done for someone else and knew she would understand us. I loved her use of shapes and colours and how bold and different her arrangements were. And then meeting her, she was warm and so passionate about our wedding from day one. I was obsessed. The Lillipillian went over and above to deliver the original plan despite inflation pressures.”
Sarah didn’t have the best luck dress shopping but ended up finding her match at Luv Bridal. She shares “My dress experience was a little stressful as my first appointment was cancelled due to lockdowns. I had done a lot of pre-research on dresses I loved as I was less than a year out and being a plus-size lady I felt like I already had limited options. Knowing the dresses I wanted I booked two appointments with two different stores fully intending to choose between the two. I could only bring one person to each of my appointments thanks to the post-lockdown restrictions.
While I did love the two dresses I picked online… it was a dress that one of my bridesmaids picked, that I tried on a whim and had no intention of loving that was the perfect dress. It was the perfect mix of classic style with a fun and quirky twist. I ended up wearing the “Clara” gown from Madi Lane. The amazing team at Luv Bridal in Crows Nest were the most supportive and body-positive team ever. I wanted to honour my Filipino heritage where I could. So I bought Filipino-made earrings for myself, my bridesmaids and my mum. ”
Gyimaah wore a traditional Ghanaian Kente and traditional slippers (Ahenema) for the wedding ceremony, switching into a beautiful green suit from Mitchell Ogilvie Tailoring for the reception. Explains Sarah “Gyimaah always knew he wanted to wear a traditional Ghanian outfit, to honour his parents. His mum brought home the Kente from her trip to Ghana so it held extra special meaning. Gyimaah is also quite the stylish man so he also knew he wanted a custom suit made. He has been working with his tailor Richard Bowman for years so knew exactly where to go. He went in there with a vision. A double-breasted suit in green.”
The couple met before the ceremony for a first look, a moment which remains one of Sarah’s favourite parts of the day. “Being able to take a few moments with Gyimaah and connect before everything was so important in bringing us into the moment. As soon as we walked down the aisle we were swept up into the festivities so I appreciated those quiet moments.” Adds the groom “I could see how happy my now wife was. She put a lot of heart and planning into everything and she had so much joy on her face.”
Of their photographers, Sarah has nothing but praise. “We loved meeting so many passionate individuals and working with them to make concepts and ideas a reality.
Hilary and Nicola are the most amazing duo. They helped organise our whole day and my type A personality appreciated their detailed run sheet. I knew what to expect and when with plenty of authentic moments thrown in as well.”
“We wanted to include our godchildren. They were our ring bearers and flower girls. We knew from day one we wanted to include children and they provided so many moments of joy. They were the first and last on the dance floor.”
Beautiful country venue The Stables, Bendooley Estate turned on all the charm (look at those blue skies!). “We were originally going to get married in the Philippines on the beach but covid meant we had to start from scratch. We both fell in love with The Stables. It had a stunning ceremony site as well as a warm and generous reception venue all in one space.”
The couple walked hand in hand down the aisle together to “Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Kina Grannis. Recalls Sarah “You don’t have to follow all the traditions. It is a day that you can build around what is important to you and your future spouse. We did not want a garter toss, a bouquet toss or for anyone to give me away so we didn’t include any of those. It is your day so do what feels right.”
“We worked with the amazing Sue Jackman to build a story that touched on the sentimental and our love for each other as well as making sure we has moments of laughter and joy” remembers Sarah of the ceremony. “We included Gyimaah’s mum do a blessing and my mum to read a Bible verse. We wanted some religious touches to honour our parents and our heritage.”
The best way to celebrate tying the knot? For these two there was only one answer – doughnuts! “Gyimaah is obsessed with doughnuts. Especially cinnamon ones. So along with the cake, we made sure we included doughnuts!! We also made sure to cut the cake soon after our wedding ceremony. As a baker, I feel like cakes are often forgotten at the end of the night with so much left over. So we did it early and my plan backfired because I never got to eat the cake!”
Sarah & Gyimaah had LB Styling on hand to help their visions come to life. Explains Sarah “I worked closely with LB Styling to nail all the little touches like the wedding website, personalised menus, colourful napkins and tablescape. I did create the set of wedding invitations myself. I used LB’s original design as a basis for building the rsvp and info cards. I did this all in Canva and printed at Officeworks.”
The newlyweds claim the speeches as a highlight of the night. “My brothers were always planned as the main speech for my side as my mum hates public speaking” explains Sarah. “But they had convinced her to be part of it. That was something I never expected and makes me tear up still. Gyimaah’s best friend also cried during his speech. Despite not crying on his own. A testament to the depth of friendship they have.”
The newlyweds honoured the moment they got engaged with their first dance. “Gyimaah proposed to me to the Ed Sheeran song “Perfect” so we wanted our first dance to reflect that” explains Sarah. “But obviously, we wanted the Beyonce version!”
A big beautiful congratulations to you both Sarah and Gyimaah! Thank you for sharing your beautiful wedding day stories with us. And thank you to Hilary Cam for sharing today’s images with us.