P a t r i c k & M e r c e d e s
P a r t O n e
F r o m T h e B r i d e
We met at a friend's (Chrissie's) birthday. Being English, she takes advantage of the fact that her birthday falls in January and organises a cruise on Sydney Harbour with 30 of her closest friends. She spreads the invite far and wide and another English friend, Stu, asked Patrick along. As soon as we met we got talking... Funnily enough we soon realised we grew up a whole of 10 minutes away from each other. Crazy to think it took two English friends to bring us together.
Patrick proposed in Thailand at a gorgeous little resort on the island Koh Tao in September 2011. It was perfect, just us in our lovely villa one night before we headed out to dinner. Simple and perfect.
We both have very distinct taste and had decided early on that we didn't want a big traditional wedding and we'd really love somewhere that was a bit of a journey from Sydney so that we could stay over night somewhere. We quickly fell in love with the idea of a country wedding to help us create a warm, intimate, relaxed wedding that allowed us to just enjoy the day and have a celebration.
Our venue choice really was one of the most important choices for us. We wanted a venue that would allow us the freedom to create the wedding we desired, and somewhere that felt warm and intimate for our guests - like an extension of our own dining room.
We ended up removing a lot of the traditional wedding touches because we just didn't feel we needed them (no wedding cake, no grand entrance or exit and we totally forgot about garter throwing.) Funnily enough when we mentioned this after the wedding to our guests they all laughed and said they didn't even notice.
Our ceremony and reception were held at Summerlees property in Sutton Forrest. We decided we wanted to remove any need for people to drive between venues and instead start the festivities as we got our photos taken. Also considering that those who didn't stay over night had to drive an hour and a half each way... I think the guests really appreciated once they got there they could settle in.
We found Summerlees by chance and fell in love with it from the moment we saw the property. We later found that my (Mercedes) late mother had spent time on the property before I was born, which confirmed it was the right choice and made it even more special on the day.
Patty, the owner who lives there with her family was just amazing... she basically let us do what we wanted with her amazing space and was so passionate about helping us create a gorgeous wedding. It allowed an amazing space for our ceremony, while the country ballroom was just perfect for our reception.
Our family, bridal party and some guests came up on the Friday... so we organised at a local pub some tables and guests just came and went as they wished. It was perfect because it was casual, guests got to meet before the wedding, we got rid of some of our pre-wedding jitters and we left early as our guests were still having a great time.
I never really had any set ideas of what I wanted my dress to be like... just small details that I would like in a dress. We came across Anaessia, who was at the time in the Stand Arcade in Sydney. She makes the most amazing dresses out of vintage silk and although she does amazing wedding dresses... it isn't like a typical wedding dress shop.
I found the dress hanging and loved the vintage silk and general design... once I tried it on, it just suited me and although I was open to any style of dress, as soon as I started playing with the amount of tulle I could have under the silk... I felt like a bride. I had always said I wanted a low back on my dress and Anaessia was able to do that for me and so much more. My dress making was so stress free and fun and it ended up being the right dress all along.
To bring some sentiment into my overall look on the day, I wore my late mother's earrings and my dad got my mother's engagement ring made into a gorgeous bracelet that I could then move onto a necklace after the wedding.
Our bridesmaids wore custom made vintage dresses from Grandma Takes a Trip (in Sydney). We picked the fabric, vintage curtains, and Nicola from Grandma Takes a Trip designed them into the gorgeous dresses. My gorgeous flower girl Sienna's dress was made by her grandmother.
Groom & Groomsmen...
The men were dressed in custom made suits from The Cloakroom in Brisbane. We got really into the tailoring of their suits and the craftsmen at the Cloakroom were the obvious choice. For Patrick's suit we chose a navy fabric from Dormeuil to differentiate him from the groomsmen, and a burnt orange tie made to order by the Cloakroom to match the colour of the bridesmaid dresses.
We know nothing about flowers. Nothing.
So we searched around for florists who could pull from what we wanted in the reception venue.... We came across Michelle from Affair with George, located in the region, and she understood very quickly what we wanted. We knew we wanted succulents in the bouquets and the men's flower pin and the colours to be complementary to the tone of the dresses and the property. That's all we knew. What she came up with was just gorgeous!
Photographer Todd Hunter McGaw Ceremony + Reception Venue Summerlees Estate Bride's Dress Anaessia Bridesmaid Dresses Grandma Takes a Trip Hair + Makeup Andriana Demetrius with assistant Mandy Nichols
Represented by Ferrari Creative Groom + Groomsmen Suits The Cloakroom Flowers Affair With George Catering Sassy Catering Entertainment The White Tree Band Wedding Favours Montrose Berry Farm
Keep your eyes on the blog tomorrow for Part II of Patrick and Mercedes Southern Highlands Wedding!