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jess adam mainJess and Adam's Cocktail-Style Wedding

Date: 31 January 2014
Wedding Photographer: Imajica Photography
Wedding Ceremony and Reception: Garden and Winery around Yallingup

Interview with the Bride

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We got married 3.5 years after getting engaged so we took it slow, though we were probably seriously planning from 18 months before the wedding. Our budget was $25, 000 to begin with but when our reception venue cancelled and we had to find a new venue the budget went to $30,000 to accommodate for extra costs. The parents of the groom organised a videographer for us as a wedding gift. My mum was a constant source of support with any ideas or advice as was my maid of honour who got married the month before! The groom suggested the cocktail style reception and helped with the menu planning, he picked the engagement ring and the honeymoon destinations.

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I started looking at dresses basically as soon as I got engaged! But I didn't seriously look till about 18 months before the wedding date. I saw it online and fell in love so had to track down the designer and the supplier. It wasn't traditional white or ivory – the top layer of silk had a pink hue to it and I loved that it wasn't a solid colour or the pink too noticeable. The fitted bodice was embroidered with silk ribbon, Swarovski Crystals and lace. It was the first dress I tried on and it felt just right.jess adam 6

I wanted a bouquet with lots of pastel colours and different sort of flowers. In the end I had different colour carnations roses as well as David Austen roses, yellow billy buttons and mint foliage. I saw a picture online and loved it so got my florist to recreate it as similarly as she could.jess adam 7jess adam 8

For our ceremony, we asked both our mums to do a reading each, we wrote our own vows and personal introduction to the ceremony. After the ceremony we set up some lawn games and had champagne being served.

We love being in the Margaret River/Yallingup region and as we were getting married right in summer we thought the cooler weather in that region would be nicer, plus it turned into a little getaway with all our friends and family. Our original reception venue had to cancel on us 3 months out from the wedding but it actually worked in our favour as the winery was what we had originally envisioned for our day.

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For the bridesmaids we gifted them their dresses, bracelets and engraved champagne glasses. For the groomsmen we gifted them their suits, custom cufflinks and engraved whiskey glasses. We didn't have any children at our wedding.
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Due to the change in reception venue we brought our ceremony time forward to 2.30pm, our guests had to travel back to Margaret River to catch the bus to the reception which started from 5.30pm with buses picking everyone up at 11pm to take them back to Margaret River.

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We had a cocktail style reception which we loved and we had so many guests saying it was the best wedding they had been to! Everyone loved the casual vibe. We had comfy outdoor lounges spread out with coffee tables and wine barrels and a few large tables and chairs for older guests and people to sit when they wanted. I felt people mingled more and guests told us they spoke to people they generally wouldn't have at a traditional sit down.

The beauty of the cocktail style is there were comfy lounges set up under the marquee as well as outside the garden so people were mingling all night and dancing their hearts out. We had our toasts spread out over the evening and I surprised my new husband with a watch as a gift at the beginning of the reception. There was also a James Bond quiz and our two MC's (uncle and cousin of the groom) dressed up as characters from the films. They were hilarious. The hosts at the winery also surprised us with the decorations – they strung up so many more fairy lights than they originally had as they knew how much I loved them, they also had some signs up from where we were both from and where we were going on our honeymoon, it was such a nice, personal touch.

We didn't really have a theme – we just wanted something laid-back to suit our personalities. With the reception location changing it went from beachside to romantic garden feel. Though there was a slight James Bond theme incorporated as well. We wanted a lot of lights and candles. We bought LED tea lights, lanterns, luminati bags, paper lanterns and banners. The winery decorated the tables with bouquets of pretty flowers from their garden and put up a lot of fairly lights for us. We bought all our own decorations and we hired a stylist to set them up with help from the amazing hosts at the winery. We made our own wedding favours.

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Make sure you take a breath and look around – I hear from so many brides saying they hardly noticed their decorations or the food and you put a lot of thought into it when planning so you need to enjoy it! Our photographer borrowed us for 15 minutes to go take some silhouette shots in a dark paddock and it was the perfect time for my new husband and I to catch up and spend a few minutes alone as we were so distracted at the reception.

It's easy to get caught up with chatting to someone for a long time so be aware of other guests and fun things going on around you – your guests will understand if you excuse yourself to join in the dancing or mingle with people you haven't seen yet. Remember if anything goes wrong you have an army of people that will help you as we did with the cancellation of our venue. I wouldn't have changed anything except to spend more time dancing and enjoying the photobooth with guests – I got so caught up with trying to make sure I was spending enough time talking to everyone instead of dancing with everyone!

CTCW Wedding Suppliers:

Ceremony Location - A garden in Yallingup
Wedding Reception Venue - A winery in Yallingup
Photographer - Imajica Photography
Accommodation - Margaret's Beach Resort, Margaret River
Brides Dress & Accessories - Tuscany Bridal, Betts (shoes) and Etsy (accessories)
Bridesmaid’s Dresses & Accessories - Forever New
Rings - Love and Passion & Mazzucchellis
Groom & Groomsman attire - Ed Harry
Transport - Gannaway Charters
Bonbonnieres - DIY
Videographer - Mark Whittle at Supernova Productions

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