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mel ryan mainMel & Ryan's Cape Naturaliste Ocean Cliff Wedding

Date: 9th November 2013
Wedding Ceremony: Other Side of the Moon cliff top, Cape Naturaliste
Wedding Reception: Meelup Creek Cottages, Meelup (Dunsborough)

Interview with the Bride

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How much time did you give yourself to plan your wedding day?
We were engaged on Christmas Day and were married November of the following year. We pretty much worked on it throughout those 10 and a half months.

What was your budget, and did you stick to it?
Our budget was $20k to $25k and we went slightly over. The guest list seemed to keep getting bigger and bigger and this contributed massively to the end cost.

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How many guests did you have at your wedding?
Around 140.

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Why did you choose your particular ceremony/reception locations?
We are fortunate to live locally and the ceremony location is one of Ryan's favourite surf spots - although it was difficult to get so many people there at the same time! It was extra special though as it turns out nobody has every been married there before [as we found out when booking through the local shire]. The reception location fitted in perfectly as it was only a short drive from the ceremony and was based on a large grassed area so there was plenty of room and it matched our style perfectly.

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What did the groom organise?
Ryan was relatively involved throughout the process although he was brilliant in looking after the transport [including buses], assisting close friends to find
accommodation and all the tricky bits of setting up the reception venue such as furniture, marquees, sound and lighting.

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When did you start looking for your wedding dress?
About nine months before the wedding, just in case I needed to have it custom made. As it turned out I was able to purchase it off the shelf and I had to spend months keeping it locked away! The intricate custom made back and shoulder piece by Issy took longer to create but it was well worth the wait.

What was it about your wedding dress you liked the most?
I liked its simplicity and elegance. It fitted with our style and I felt comfortable in it throughout the whole wedding. I also loved that it was unique. Even though it was a Lisa Ho design [who is since sadly no more] the back piece really made it my own.

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What special details did you incorporate into your wedding ceremony?
The ceremony and vows were pretty simple. The location itself was special enough.

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What was the structure & timing of the day like for the ceremony and reception?
Ceremony began at 4pm with reception following immediately after.

Did you have a traditional sit-down reception or did you do something different, if so, what was it like?
No, we had a more informal reception with canapes.

What did your guests do after your ceremony while you and your wedding party went for wedding photos?
There was not much space between the ceremony and reception. By the time the guests made their way back to the reception venue the caterers were ready to start serving canapes and drinks.

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What was your wedding day style/theme/look/colour?
Apart from the beach based ceremony the style of the wedding was more garden-whimsical vintage-esque. The colours I chose as an underlying theme were the pastel pink/nude, brown, beige and pastel green.

How did you decorate your ceremony and reception, to suit your theme?
The decorations at the reception included quite a bit of lace. Lace bunting, lace tablecloths and lace curtains. We also strung up numerous jars wrapped in wire holding tealights to the peppermint trees surrounding the grassed area. We set aside an area as a little make-shift vintage style living room with old mismatched couches for people who wanted to sit down.

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Do you have any advice for other brides planning their wedding?

Allocate!! If you're doing what we did and organising everything yourselves - from caterers to decorations - don't feel like you need to do it all on your own. Friends and family love being involved and they come in really handy especially in the days leading up to the wedding when you have a million and one things on the go... You want to be able to enjoy the days leading up to the wedding so don't be afraid to share the load.

Is there anything you would do differently if you could have your wedding again?

Not a thing.

Where did you go on your honeymoon?

Bali - Seminyak and Uluwatu.

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CTCW Wedding Suppliers:

Ceremony Location: Other Side of the Moon Cliff - Cape Naturaliste.
Reception Venue: Meelup Creek Cottages, Meelup.
Photographer: Belinda Gilbert Photography
Accommodation for you & your guests: Booked private holiday home for bridal party, along with accommodation available at reception venue.
Brides dress & Accessories: Dress was Lisa Ho with detailing custom created by the wonderful Issy from Pinchandspoon.
Bridesmaid's Dresses & Accessories dresses: Bridesmaids selected their own dresses - two from ASOS. Headpieces created by Issy at Pinchandspoon.
Rings: Inkas, Busselton.
Groom & Groomsman Attire: Suits ordered off ebay. The shirts, belts and shoes all from Stepping Up Menswear.
Entertainment: Mitch Baker played acoustic to start the reception off. Followed by our own playlist on the humble ipod. Sound equipment all hired through Busselton Party Hire.
Transport: The grooms trusty old yellow Kingswood ute and his mates brown Kingswood wagon.
Favours: The sister of the groom whipped up a delicious batch of home-made marmalade which were presented in little jars with labels saying: 'you've marmalade our day'. We also planted succulents in little pots so the guests had a choice of what to take.

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