Surprise... We Got Married! Part II: The Story & The Styling | April 15, 2010

So you've probably heard that Mark and I cheekily surprised all our guests with a civil wedding ceremony during our 'engagement' party. Well, the following article contains the whole story along with all the sweet little details of the event, styled by yours truly with the help of some very talented folk.

Just in case you're looking to create a similar style of event in Melbourne, I've also provided a detailed account of where to source all the bits and pieces and have compiled a list of some of the creatives in the industry you should know.

THE DRESS

I wore my mother's 30 year old floral wedding dress accompanied by an Alannah Hill floral hairpiece and vintage-style pearl white shoes each topped with a cute little rosette.

HAIR AND MAKE-UP

The gorgeous and talented Julie Dammery of Beautique Creative did a wonderful job. She created a very soft, natural and beautiful look for me.

THE STYLING

I chose 'simple', 'rustic', 'recycled', 'vintage' and 'casual' as the key themes of our wedding 'picnic'. Wanting to capture a fresh, spring feel I set bright warm reds, oranges, pinks and yellows ablaze against a rustic landscape of wooden furniture, vintage crates, wine barrels, an odd assortment of collected jars and and bottles and bamboo plates and cutlery. Guests were advised a dress code of 'smart casual' to maintain the relaxed and understated tone of the event.

THE SETTING

A series of pop-up pagoda marquees were set up around the edge of one half of a tennis court. In the middle were four large umbrellas. This added an open, outdoor feel while still protecting us from the intermittent drizzle that occurred throughout the day.

THE GUESTS ARRIVE

At 2pm, Mark and I stood under a pretty cream-coloured royal marquee set up at the front of the event, greeting our guests as they arrived.

Because we hosted it in the backyard of my husband's parents place, it created a much more personal and intimate atmosphere and allowed us a few days to set up so that we had time to refine the details.

Upon arriving, a lot of our guests may have thought that there was quite a lot of effort put into what was essentially just supposed to be an 'engagement' party.

THE FOOD

Our caterers were Atlantic On Site. Their food was delicious and stylishly and creatively presented. They worked well with us to customise the presentation to fit with the theme. Guests raved about their food!

The delicious savouries consisted of simple, rustic fare with a home made feel. Highlights included some handmade chips in boxes made from magazine paper. The presentation of these was a perfect fit for my 'recycled' theme. I sourced the round wooden bread boards used for the vegatable antipasto and cheeses from Market Import.

THE BUFFET

I absolutely love how the buffet turned out visually. It had a rustic and casual feel about it with the overhanging flowers adding a touch of elegance.

THE DESSERTS

The lemon meringues were to-die-for. A clear favourite among guests. The creative little 'textured lollipops' in various colours and flavours had a very light and foamy, marshmallow-like quality and were a delight to taste.

FLORAL STYLING

A creative arrangement of cheerful and warm-toned flowers in hanging glass bottles floated magically above the buffet and was the chief focal point of the event.

Flowers were also casually placed in the vast array of jars and bottles of varying shapes and sizes and arranged haphazardly across picnic benches. Gerberas, roses, strawberry fields, gloriosa, tulips, billy buttons, green tricks, sunflowers and dahlias were among the flower types present.

Flower credits go to Melanie from Cecilia Fox. Her stunning hanging bottles stole the show. They were gorgeous! She also was a great help with all the other flower arrangements throughout the whole space. The vast majority of bottles scattered throughout the event were hired from Georgeous but I also added a few from my own collection.

THE ANNOUNCEMENT

At 3pm, Mark grabs everyone's attention and begins his speech, thanking everybody for coming and relating stories about how we met and how we were friends for many years before we eventually got our acts together and became a couple. At the conclusion of his speech, he casually lets it slip that we are going to be honouring our commitment to each other in the form of a civil wedding ceremony here today before all our guests.

THE REACTION

The collective gasp, shocked and delighted faces, raised arms and exclamations such as "You sly dog!" were pure gold! I wish I could live in that moment forever!

THE CEREMONY

We spontaneously chose a spot amongst our guests to conduct a relaxed and unrehearsed ceremony. Our celebrant Deborah Cannon did a fantastic job especially dealing with our tendency to erupt in silliness!

THE KISS

You've probably already seen these beautiful images here of our first kiss as husband and wife.

THE HUGS

These candid shots below of the congratulatory hugs after the ceremony and toast are among my favourites of the day!

THE WEDDING 'CAKE' - SCONES WITH JAM AND CREAM

I'm a sucker for warm scones topped with generous dollops of jam and cream. So simple and homey, these had to be the 'wedding cake'.

Once the toast was given and everyone had a little champagne, the scones were handed out to guests.

I created little paper trays in 'picnic' gingham and lined these with Cath Kidston paper napkins in kitschy patterns. The trays were personalised with our names and wedding date. You may recognise the heart design from this previous freebie. I also asked Atlantic to top them off with a couple of fresh strawberries for an extra splash of colour!

THE LEMONADE

The 'homemade lemonade with elderflower water' by Atlantic was simply delicious and, in true recycled fashion, provided in jam jars. Manila tags tied to the top of each jar allowed guests to write their names and re-use their jar throughout the afternoon. These were topped off with pinky red and white vintage-style paper straws which I bought online from Lulus's Cupcake Boutique. The lemonade sat in glass jugs atop wine barrels as part of 'self service' stations set up at various points throughout the event space. The jam jars were hired through Georgeous. Barrels hired through The Design Depot.

GUEST POSTCARDS

Our guestbook were Cavallini and Co. postcards from Zetta Florence depicting various flowers and vegetables. Guests would write us a little message on the back and leave them in this vintage-style wooden luggage.

BITS AND PIECES

Chinese Lanterns from Scarlet Jones

Faux vintage typewriter from Provincial Home Living

Wooden Pencils from Oxfam

The cutest little stools ever, hired through Georgeous.

Vintage Crates hired through Georgeous

Assorted flowers from local florists and from Cecilia Fox

Bamboo sporks with matching round side-plates from Bambu, ordered online from Greenfeet.

Apples from the local supermarket!

FURNITURE HIRE

A combination of outdoor picnic benches from The Design Depot and three legged stools and matching round tables , hired through Georgeous helped create the relaxed, outdoor 'picnic' feel.

THE MUSIC

We treated guests to nostalgic hits from The Beatles, Burt Bacharach, The Beach Boys, The Monkees, Doris Day, Dusty Springfield, Elvis, you get the idea....

THE PROCESS

Taking on the role of 'event stylist' for my wedding was initially a challenging one. I knew exactly what I wanted, envisaged the style and all the little details in my head but needed the right contacts and sources to make it happen. At first, I thought creating an event like this was impossible in Melbourne- all I could find were props that were either corporate modern/minimalist or overly 'grand' and traditional. That was until I met Georgie.

Although I didn't necessarily hire Georgie Kaye in an event planning capacity for this event, I would highly recommend her and her company "Georgeous". Especially if you're not a stylist yourself and are looking for an event management company that provides highly creative, quirky and unique events.

When I inadvertantly discovered her while searching for reasonably priced fake grass hire (something of a rare breed in Melbourne), things magically fell into place. I essentially hired a lot of the rustic furniture and bits and pieces through Georgeous but as far as I was concerned the service went above and beyond 'hired goods'. Georgie also provided tips, advice and ideas, actually physically helped out with some of the setting up (her removalist guy Chris put in such a great effort to get everything in place and was such a perfectionist!) and provided me access to a fantastic floral designer, Her passion, creativity and positive energy were incredibly inspiring and made her a delight to work with.

THE PHOTOGRAPHY

The other major hurdle was finding a suitable photographer. Luckily, on Polka Dot Bride I discovered Jonathan Ong. With a keen eye for composition and colour and a passion for detail, Jonathan and I spoke the same language and therefore worked really well together. I think it's so important to be able to capture not only the results of all the hard work that went out into creating a beautiful event but also to capture all those special and magical moments that make up the wedding experience. Jonathan did a brilliant job with both of these tasks.

Cheers Jon! Look forward to working with you again in the future!

LAST BUT NOT LEAST

I really need to credit the whole family for their valued time and effort in putting this whole event together. My husband and all our parents helped with dealing with vendors, setting up the space, running around to buy odds and ends, floral arrangements, creating the origami heart invitations, sourcing the drinks ... the list goes on. Fantastic team effort!

Stay tuned, more pics of the photo shoot with Mark and I as a newly married couple to come.

{ All photos by Jonathan Ong }

XO
210
posted under: Do It Yourself, Engagement Party, Parties, Photography, storytelling, Vintage Style, Weddings

Comments

  1. This is my first visit to your awesome and inspiring site and wow - what an announcement. I love how you kept it secret. Wishing you both much love, joy and happiness always.

    Thanks for sharing all your creativity.
  2. I am in complete wedding love. I love the dress, the food, the colors, the personality, the flowers...

    I love it all.
  3. Perfection!
    Most beautiful wedding I have seen this year - full of soul and exactly the kind I had for my wedding (minus the surprise not to give my dad another heart issue-lol!)but relaxed and among good friends and good music.

    Congratulations and best wishes to the both of you!
  4. Patty | Apr 15, 2010
    First of all congrats! Second, everything looks so pretty, casual yet classic. Great job!
  5. Absolutely gorgeous! Love how personal everything was!
  6. too beautiful for words! love love love ?

    congrats :) xo
  7. Such a beautiful wedding. I wish I had done more of this for my wedding! Thank you so much for sharing!
  8. Oh my gosh how wonderful! Your event was so unique and inspired, congrats and best wishes!
  9. very beautiful!
  10. Beautiful! Absolutely beautiful. Congratulations and best wishes to you both!
  11. such an incredible woman... The perfect wedding! Best wishes from florence!
  12. The most beautiful wedding I've ever seen!!!
    I really love it! I wish I married this way.
    I love the picture's of the kiss!
    And the picture of the anncouncement and the hugs almost made me cry, I love the emotion that's been captured in those pictures.
    Well done, and congratulations on your wedding!
    Best Wishes!
  13. Such a beautiful wedding!! Congratulations to you both :)
  14. Congratulations. This is the nicest surprise to give people.

    And i love all the little touches, and the food - it all looks delicious.
  15. This is so beautiful ? Love everything of it. Congrats and best wishes to the both of you!
  16. congrats!!! what a beautiful wedding...love it!
  17. Wow! It´s the most beautiful wedding I´ve ever seen!!!! Congratulations!
  18. Unbelievably beautiful and one of the sweetest stories ever! Nearly brought tears to my eyes. I wish you both the most amazing marriage ever!
  19. What a beautiful and charming wedding! Congrats! You did a perfect job! I love all the little touches especially the suspended flower bottles and the lemonade jars. Looks like a super fun and happy day!
  20. What a beautiful and fun wedding! I absolutely love the hanging jars of flowers and your "guestbook." So sweet! It looks like a wonderful time was had by all. Congratulations on your new life as husband and wife!
  21. this is so amazing!
  22. Everything looks AMAZING!!! I'm getting married in August and I'm so inspired by all of your great ideas. I also love that it was a surprise wedding. I can't get over what a great concept that is. Congrats!!

    ps I blogged about it over here http://arielgordonjewelry.blogspot.com/
  23. congratulations!! loving how intimate this was. the details just made your special day even more lovely.
  24. Darling, your blog, you, everything you do, brings a HUGE smile to my face, each and every time. You are amazing and your style is IMPECCABLE!!! Please, never stop. Jeez, your HEADER, ALONE, makes me happy. :)
  25. Absolutely phenomenal. Best wishes to you both.
  26. That is so amazing. Wow! I don't even know what to say!

    How did you decide you wanted a surprise wedding? Did you know all along that your engagement party was actually going to be your wedding? Was it a complete surprise to your parents/families as well?

    Again, wow! You'll remember this the rest of your life, and deservedly so!
  27. Krystel | Apr 16, 2010
    THIS explains all the effort you kept posting about for the engagement party. I thought you were going a little gaga but now I see why. Oh it turned out soooo lovely!! I teared up reading about the guests' reactions to the surprise announcement. Congratulations!
  28. Wow, wow, wow. It's all so beautiful. I love the special touches and that you surprised your guests.
  29. I love this- so special and unique:) Thanks for sharing!
  30. oh wow. this is PERFECT. What an awesome and intimate idea!
    LOVE LOVE LOVE all the details! so pretty!
  31. When I first saw those origami invitations, I thought, “Man, she’s going all out for the engagement party. I can’t imagine what she’d do for a wedding.” Now I know. I love all of the charming and homey details that went into this event. But what I love even more is the genuine joy that has been captured on everyone’s face, especially the new husband and wife. There are few weddings that I see pictures of that make me wish I would have been there, but this one does. I don’t even know you. But there is so much magic and *realness* here. It’s an absolute joy to see.
  32. Elizabeth P | Apr 16, 2010
    wow. that is soo beautiful :D
    totally impressed my the originality and small details. LOVE.
    xx
  33. Sharnel Dollar | Apr 16, 2010
    You are such a clever girl. I love the whole set up. My favourite my have to be the scones and jam in lieu of wedding cake. Amazing!!!
  34. ok i havent read anything yet and have just looked at the first pic but im sqeeling with excitment - its your mums dress!!!! - ok, ok, now ive got to read on : )
  35. Congratulations! A day to remember for sure.
  36. Absolutely beautiful! Much congrats! Love the bottles with the flowers. You are so talented. Lovely dress!!!
  37. Congratulations Amy and Mark! Your wedding is beautiful as no doubt your marriage will be. Jonathan has done a fabulous job on your images. LOVE your first photos together as a couple!
  38. This is one of the loveliest & most heartfelt weddings I've seen! I'm such a sucker for the surprise wedding & you pulled it off SO beautifully! The details and decor are out of this world! C O N G R A T S to you and your wonderful new husband! xoxo
  39. Gabby | Apr 16, 2010
    This is one of the most imaginative and casual, yet beautiful weddings I've ever seen! Congratulations to the 2 of you and much happiness!
  40. such an amazing civil union! you have completely inspired me :) congrats again x
  41. Lynda - mother of the groom | Apr 16, 2010
    Got to tell you I am having a good cry now - so beautiful - what a daughter in law I have! XXXX
  42. WOW! This is one amazing wedding and what a way to celebrate, my warmest congratulations and regards to the both of you for this day. It looked amazing and seemed like it was well worth the celebration. I also love the styling effort and theme that revolved the wedding around - AMAZING! :D
  43. Swooning over here!

    Many congratulations this is one of the most fabulous weddings I have ever heard about or have had the privilege of seeing the photographs as well as the process of...

    Woot! Woot!

    xo
  44. Charmaine L | Apr 16, 2010
    Amy - absolutely stunning pictures! Congrats to you again. What a beautiful stylish wedding. I'm speechless =) All the best to you and your new hubby. Love the wedding dress!
  45. Phuong | Apr 16, 2010
    Congratulations guys!!! I love your flavour of style! I will be looking into some of the vendors to possible use at my wedding next year! The photography is amazing!
  46. Beautiful and inspiring! Love how intimate and sweet it all seems! Congratulations on your special day!
  47. O?uz Demirkap? | Apr 16, 2010
    Congrats and best wishes! :)
  48. Wow, stunning, beautiful, lovely, sweet, perfect...oh so many words I could think of to describe your beautiful day...I am truly inspired and you made me realise how a casual wedding can be so meaningful and lovely to all those invited and for yourselves of course! It seems to oooze personality and love...congratulations!!! xxx
  49. Lovely xoxo
  50. Jacob and Tiffany | Apr 16, 2010
    Mark and Amy,

    What a beautiful wedding. We still want to come and visit. All our love to you and your families.

    Jacob and Tiffany
  51. Amy this is truly wonderful and inspiring - I have followed your blog for some time and love everything you do - this must have been such a special day for your friends and family (and I bet those that couldn't come will be kicking themselves now!). Continued success and love for your life together. I look forward to future installments. Leanne - Mrs A in the Cove xx
  52. Jo | Apr 16, 2010
    congrats - love your blog, so nice to see a fresh, interesting aussie perspective out there... i am sure that your wedding was as much fun as it looks. have a wonderful life together
  53. All the details are absolutely perfect!! My favorite is the hanging clear glasses with flowers, LOVE IT!!! Congrats again and can't wait to see more pics of you two!
  54. Wow congrats! Love the stylish details, so very Eat Drink Chic. Jonathon Ong took my friends' photos too, he's fab.

    Jetsetting Joyce
  55. Mark and Amy,
    You look so lovely and cute together. And what a beautiful wedding and stunning photographs!

    Congratulations and many wishes !
    Rupesh
  56. oh Congrats! What beautiful details you have captured, gorgeous photos too.
  57. Shannel | Apr 17, 2010
    lovely. just lovely. congrats again.
  58. I just got a tear in my eye reading this! Congratulations, it looks like a wonderful celebration xx
  59. Bonnie | Apr 17, 2010
    congratulations! you have inspired me...what a beautiful and meaningful wedding. I love it :)

    Im soooo curious how you made the little scone trays coz I am serving scones and jam and cream at my wedding...wanna share any tips? :)
  60. Haley | Apr 17, 2010
    HI!!! Such a cute wedding! I just saw this posted on the 100 layer cake blog! So my wedding is this summer.. and it is a backyard picnic/bbq type get together! I was planning on using white cardboard trays like you for the food... until I just saw your adorable gingham ones! (I also loved the heart design) Do you mind me asking where you got those from or how you made them?? I'm very interested!!
  61. this is so lovely! congratulations!
    xo
  62. wow! i love the style and theme..so original and fresh..love every bit of it.
    and the surprise wedding ceremony is genius!
    by the way, jonathan is a friend of mine and he's such an amazing photographer..so glad u chosen him for your wedding!

    congrats to u and ur husband! :)
  63. So beautiful! Congratulations!
  64. Congratulations!! Gorgeous wedding, looks like so much fun. Love the styling - great job!
  65. Wow, I am blown away by your amazing wedding! I love the surprise element but the creativity and perfect styling are what got me! Well done and congratulations!
  66. wow, beautiful wedding. congrats!
  67. You have it ALL! gorgeous hubby, beautiful girl, insanely talented and generous. The most delightful wedding I have ever seen. congratulations and wishing you a lifetime of health, happiness and beautiful bambinos!
  68. What an amazing and gorgeous event. I love every detail! The pictures after the "reveal" are priceless. What a great moment captured. Congratulations!
  69. Congratulations! What a beautiful weeding.I LOVE every details of your event! And my favourite element of your day are the surprised faces of your guests! I also love your wedding dress, so meaningful...
  70. Dear Amy,

    This is just the most beautiful, inspiring, intimate wedding - I love all of the details and the photography is so lovely!

    Eat drink Chic is a new discovery for me and I am loving all of your posts and the pretty look of your site.

    Thank you for sharing such gorgeous insights, your style is oh so chic and I am looking forward to more and more!

    Kindest,
    Lisa.
  71. sarah | Apr 21, 2010
    i just can't get over how gorgeous this is (i keep coming back just to look at and drink in the pictures)! i'm planning a casual wedding reception & hope to utilize some of your ideas with the flowers & all. thanks for sharing & blessings on your marriage!
  72. this is such an amazing wedding! the details are so perfect..i am so so envious. i think that when i am ready to tie the knot, i will be thinking about doing the same thing you have done...it's just amazing!

    what was the time frame for all of the planning and setting up?
  73. this is just the most lovely wedding ever! so many great ideas!
    congratulations!
  74. you are absolutely amazing. i don't think i could have kept it in that whole time!
  75. Rhonda | Apr 24, 2010
    I just found your site from Tartelette. I am simply in awe of your special day, can't pick just one favorite thing. The pictures of your first married kiss are just 'wow!'

    Wishing you many happy years together.
  76. oh my GOSH!!!

    I am in gobsmacked awe!!!!

    words cannot describe how amazing I think everything about this is, so I wont. I just wanted to say it, so you know.

    GAHHH!!!!!!!! congratulations!!!
  77. This makes me want to get married ALL OVER AGAIN. Congratulations on what looks like a beautiful event filled with all the right feelings. :-)
  78. Moz | Apr 29, 2010
    You guys are my heroes, seriously. I really hope married life is as easy as you made your wedding look xx
  79. helen | Apr 29, 2010
    this is soo sweet and it makes me forsee a wedding of similar kind. at first all i have in mind is vera wangs and four seasons or maybe something of the breath-taking kind. but no. this is the AWE of what i've seen so far. simple. symbolic. splendid in a sensational way.
    never have i seen a more beautiful smile than when groom kisses the bride

    lots of love from hk
    and i can already see a happily-ever-after coming thru
  80. I am totally in love with this idea.. The surprise, your hanging flower vases, your dress. Everything is beautiful! It must have been so fun!
  81. What a gorgeous wedding, and sweet surprise!
  82. Absolutely perfect and beautiful!
    Congratulations!
  83. Anna | May 4, 2010
    Is the first time that I read you, I'm frim Barcelona and I know you because I read Macarena Gea blog.
    Best wishes for you and your husband, for your very beautiful wedding, congratulations!!!
  84. WOW...seriously...WOW...I just stumbled across your beautiful page and this post and am stunned...WOW...so glad I did :)

    PS: Congratulations on such a beautiful, beautiful surprise :)
  85. I love, love, love that it was a surprise to your guests! The decor looked great! Your guests looked so happy for you both and of course you two look so in love and happy as well. Congratulations!
  86. Just stumbled upon your blog...

    Such beautiful wedding photos. Adore!

    x

    http://novembergrey.blogspot.com/
  87. Congratulations!! It all looked gorgeous!!! :) :) Certainly, a day to remember!!
  88. alexis | May 18, 2010
    beautiful wedding... though i have no plans to get married anytime soon, yours has truly inspired me for one. wishing you all the best with your new life :)
  89. Hi Amy,

    What an awesome wedding theme u had! I love all the sweet details you decorated for your wedding! Hope you dont mind me sharing this gorgeous wedding post with my readers. Wish you and your life partner have an awesome marriage! :)

    Feel free to check out: www.heyawesome.tumblr.com
  90. Your wedding is absolutely amazing! So much more interesting than a traditional one!
    Congratulations!
    Oh, and even though you make it seem like something simple and spontaneous, I can see all the work you put on it...
    From the food choice, to the cake idea, the flower vases...everything is wonderful!
    From one lady that once lived in the beautiful Australia!
    I'm so following your blog!
  91. Q. | May 26, 2010
    Your wedding had the perfect combination of eloquence, originality, and I'm guessing, you and yours' personalities. I love it! I came across your site while looking for unique event ideas, and I think it's great! Keep up the good work and congratulations!
  92. Just like others who inspired by your beautiful and intimate surprise engagement/wedding party, I came across your blog while looking for new trend in dessert table and I found this.

    Congratulations on your marriage. This is definitely THE WEDDING of the season!
  93. it must have been an amazing wedding! most of all, unsual! I am so sick of long hours at the restaurant, the boring church, loads of parents that do not care...
    Well done, congrat and I wish you a life full of love and joy.

    Ylenia
    http://longuette.blogpot.com
  94. I teared up a little bit here in my cubicle at work. Congratulations and best wishes!
  95. OMG, I've just discovered your blog and LOVE it! I've always had the same idea about surprising guests with a wedding too but I would have never been able to pull it off like you did! I'm also a massive Alannah Hill fan and adore vintage and fresh flowers so can really appreciate these gorgeous pics. By the way, you looked stunning! Congratulations! Look forward to reading more posts :)
  96. Elma | Jun 12, 2010
    Congratulations!! Gerat idea!
  97. this is the first time i've been to your blog and...so sweet! =D i love the barrels & the rustic/casual feel. the hanging bottles are genius!
  98. Emily | Jun 23, 2010
    This is my first visit to your site, and...there are tears in my eyes. So beautiful! Congratulations!
  99. I am a little (OK, really really) behind the eight ball, but CONGRATULATIONS. What a wonderful surprise and packaged in a such a fabulously designed way!

    Best wishes,

    Lexi :)
    Love.Obsess.Inspire.
  100. I found this blog while looking for freebies lol :P and thought it is a very lovely and sweet blog and I started reading it. It is indeed very lovely!! Your blog jumps straight to my favourite blog! I know it's late, but congratulations to both of you. I wish you a sweet and great marriage, as lovely as your wedding. And I wish someday I will have as lovely wedding as yours :)
  101. This is such a beautiful story! It made me full-out cry! Congrats!!
  102. how incredibly fun! i love the idea of a surprise wedding!
  103. wow, you had my dream wedding! what lovely, sweet styling... the yummy scones, the pretty flower-jars... loved looking at all of it! thanks for sharing

    xo leanna
  104. STUNNING! Your mom's floral wedding dress? That just made my day. These are beyond lovely. Congratulations, you stylish little thing.
  105. Hi! I fell in love with these beautiful pictures and had to re-blog them on my blog! I created a link back to this page :)

    thanks for sharing!

    xox

    polli
  106. melissa may | Aug 12, 2010
    fantastic!! a memorable wedding u had there~ I ? it!

    happy ever after **hugz


    ....................
    lots'a*luv
    Melissa.M
  107. Amazing! what lucky photographers to capture such a beautiful day!
  108. i am sitting here on the other side of the world...NY...and I have tears and laughter as i read about your beautiful wedding...i just found your site which is quite beautiful as well...thanx for the inspiration...well done!
  109. Megs | Aug 25, 2010
    This is my first visit, was referred by Chic Mother and Baby. Wow, what a beautiful wedding. All of the details, made for a beautiful day.

    Thanks for sharing all of your creative ideas, i will be back again!
  110. LOVE this! How simply chic and wonderful!
  111. Barbara D. Martineau | Sep 3, 2010
    This is my first time visiting your site and I couldn't help but to look at your "Surprise Wedding".....absolutely beautiful! By the way....CONGRATZ!! When my husband and I renew our vows to each other I will definitely be visiting your blog for some inspiration. Thank you for sharing a very intimate moment in your life with all of us.
  112. I'm trying to put together my own wedding coming this November, and it's posts like yours that gave me the extra boost I needed, no to mention the inspiration it brought me!
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  114. Truly a lovely affair. Such an amazing idea! And your decorating touches rock! I really enjoyed these few moments on your blog! I plan on coming back.

    Signed...
    One Moss to another!
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  116. I recently discovered your simply inspiring and sweet site and you are definitely a daily check-in for me. You have such an eye for detail and style. I just love your surprise wedding - congrats! Thanks for sharing :) Rebecca
  117. Congratulations and what a fantastic way to get married. That is a party with a twist ;)
    You got style, wauuu it looks amazing.

    Good luck.

    Cheers,
    Maria-Louisa
  118. am a first timer to your blog, but i instantly love everything you have in here. congrats on your wedding, such a beautiful day :)
  119. Tracey | Oct 2, 2010
    Just wanted to say how lovely this all is, I stumbled upon your blog while planning my own suprise wedding in February 2011, and you have inspired me so much! So much of what you have done is a similar tone and feel to what I hope my day will be, thankyou for sharing! I will probably borrow a few of your DIY elements, as imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and so far everything I've seen on your blog is amazing! Congratulations xox
  120. Michelle | Oct 5, 2010
    just wanted to tell you that i think you are absolutely amazing! many blessings to you and yours from the other side of the world.

    michelle from california
  121. mel | Oct 7, 2010
    gorgeous pics! you looks absolutely beautiful
    love the colours and the idea for your wedding
  122. Wow, Wow, Wow!!
    As a budding creative myself, I am left with my head buzzing full of ideas and inspirations after stumbling across your site and your stunning wedding photos! Well done, a truly individual and amazingly beautiful event!
  123. Awe, this is so hearwarming. I saw the post you put up about your parent's wedding and seeing you and your mom share the same dress is truly so precious. Congrats and I am swooning over the floating bottles and pretty much everything that you did for your special day. This is so lovely.
  124. What a beautiful, beautiful day...
  125. I just found your site and I love it. Your wedding pictures are beautiful and I dig all the incredible details.

    Cheers!
    http://www.coffeetalksandcatwalks.com
  126. totally gorgeous, just beautiful. tears of delight fell!
  127. annichou | Nov 13, 2010
    First, Congratulations. Everything looked marvelous !!!
    2nd, I absolutely love the surprise wedding at the arranged engagement party !!! How perfect!!
    I will think about a winter one for us !!!
    xoxo
  128. This is the most creative and beautiful wedding I have ever seen! the photography stirred me and I got a little teary eyed .... you both are beautiful and make such a lovely couple...xo
  129. Clarissa | Nov 24, 2010
    so glad to stumble upon your blog! such a beautiful wedding, simple but elegant. Congratulations!:)
  130. Sorcha | Nov 26, 2010
    Gold.
    Just gold.
  131. i'm getting married by february and i'm having so many inspiration by just reading this :)
  132. Oh my goodness, I found your blog a few months ago but have only just realised that you live in Melbourne! I also saw your wedding on Polka Dot Bride but didn't put two and two together until I was in the search for props and furniture for our upcoming wedding in rural Victoria and you came up in a google search. Am now banking on working with the amazing Georgie hopefully as I want to hire a lot of bottles, wine barrels, rustic tables and chair etc. Thank you thank you for the unexpected help :)
  133. That was a beautiful wedding and very Chic. Look like you guys had an amazing time. I will most def visit your site more often. Here's to wishing all your dreams to come true. Happy Holidays.
  134. Absolutely gorgeous.. everything! The story, the styling, the photography. Beautiful.
  135. Oh my - beautiful!!! And very sneaky. :)
  136. AMAZING! it makes me want to get married again and again! Lovely site,Felicitations!
    Caro, from Bordeaux
  137. jennifer | Dec 22, 2010
    To freakin cute!!!!!
  138. Beautiful, cute, sexy, amazing. Stumbling across this blog just made my day! Congrats!!
  139. Ann | Jan 23, 2011
    I just came across your blog & looooove your story. It made my heart smile:) Congratulations! Marriage is a beautiful journey.
  140. Gorgeous. I love how you styled your wedding. I was married in 1994… (Gasp) BEFORE THE INTERNET!!!! The Shock…..I did it all myself from Texas where I lived to Michigan where I got married. I designed the invitations using handmade paper cover decorated with a few pieces of gold and silver leaf and the invite itself was on vellum back before anybody knew what that was. I had the dress made from silk and lace purchased by my in-laws in New York City. I just trusted a seamstress somebody recommended. She made me a beautiful Oscar DeLaRenta-style dress from an ad I brought her. My mom made the baskets used for the table decorations and we planted herbs in them -each had a special meaning for love. The flowers were loose and done by a in-law of a cousin. They were simple but beautiful. I did my own hair and make-up. I made heart -shaped cookies we served out of a large basket and I made my own cake (first wedding cake I ever made) from a Martha Stewart Wedding recipe- rich chocolate cake with Grand Marnier Buttercream decorated with White chocolate shavings and my mom's home grown raspberries. My grandmother made the bridesmaid dresses after I couldn't find anything like what I wanted. I wanted them to resemble the Olympic skating outfit made by Vera Wang. Ironically the next year Vogue debuted patterns that were exactly what I wanted. Story of my life. I had so much fun planning it and making special things for my guests. This was also before the favor were given to guests or I probably would have made those as well.
  141. Edwina | Feb 15, 2011
    You thought of EVERYTHING!! So gorgeous and Special. Congratualtions.
  142. Just came across you website! Absolutely love your wedding pictures, especially those of "the kiss!" So sweet and beautiful, definitely brought tears to my eyes!

    Love your website as a whole too!
  143. Louise | Mar 4, 2011
    This is the most darling wedding I've ever seen.
    So beautiful! The styling is incredible, the colour and tone of the photography is gorgeous, everyone looks so happy and it must have been such a fun day!
    Congratulations on bringing such beautiful ideas to the table. You're an inspiration!
  144. The wedding looked absolutely beautiful - the food, the hanging flowers, your dress, your glowing faces - everything!!! The best part is the reactions of your loved ones to the great surprise. It all seemed so magical and fun. Congratulations!
  145. Danielle | Mar 21, 2011
    Beautiful! Where would one go to get personalized picnic gingham paper trays? I love this idea.
    Thank you
  146. what a amazing celebration!All is faboulous and perfect.. congratulations, it's a simple, beautiful, stylish, romance and private wedding! Love the flowers in a bottles, love the table, love the bouffets and the idea of take away, love the photos and the idea about guest book!!!love all!!!
    Congratulations again, i adore your blog , but i think this post it's the best!!
  147. what a beautiful wedding! I love your dress, and those hanging bottles are so charming! congratulations! (belatedly)
  148. Adore everything about your special day! The pictures are amazing!!! And your dress is to die for, your Mom has great taste. ;)
  149. I LOVE YOUR WEDDING! Such a sweet story and fabulous execusion of the details.

    I especially loved your postcard guest book and used that idea for a friend's wedding. Details seen here: http://thewholeenchelleada.blogspot.com/2011/03/melissa-parkers-wedding.html

    Congratulations and thank you for the continued inspiration!
  150. I just came across your blog and I am smitten with it. And your wedding, it's just so lovely! Very creative and inspiring!
  151. You have the most incredible style and you are ohhh so so pretty. I just discovered your blog tonight and I'm in love with it. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Yuriko @ Vintage Origami
  152. how beautiful and inspiring ....
  153. i love the wedding! congratulation!
    It's the most perfect wedding 1 could ever have, so personal & inspiring!

    xx
  154. everything looked so pretty...the decoration, the photos, YOU! <3
  155. Man-D | May 23, 2011
    Loved everything! You are so awesome for putting all this together for yourself. Your blog photos are so stylishly perfect too, it's so inspiring. Congratulations to you both!
  156. What a beautiful wedding. I wish you both many many years of happiness!
  157. Paula Doyle | Jun 1, 2011
    Myself and my husband did this as well. We got married in 2007 and pretended to have a dinner party. The wedding was at 6pm. It was so lovely for our guests to not have to worry about hair/ makeup clothes etc and just turn up. The only requirement was to be fessed as if they were going to dinner- no jeans for the ladies. Truly fantastic day which focused on the true meaning of marriage- love and sharing it with those thar matter.
  158. just stumbled onto your site and of course, the first post i clicked on was the one of your surprise wedding. i loved all of the handmade touches and attention to detail - my sister just got married and we tried our very best to keep the affair wholesome and grounded, with little smatterings of DIY in all the important places. great job! :]

    -m
  159. an absolute wonderful wedding.. pure beauty and sincerity :D:D:D
  160. LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!! What a sweet idea. Love everything about your wedding... Oh and your blog is pretty rad too!
  161. hazel | Aug 4, 2011
    I love those little picnic trays too! Where did you find them??
  162. GORGEOUS! Love the details, yet, its simplicity. Perfection.
  163. I cried reading this and looking at the pictures everything was beautiful and so well thought out.
  164. Erin | Aug 20, 2011
    Stumbled across your blog and this post. The looks on everyone's faces after the annoucement are priceless, brought me to tears :) beautiful day and the style is just perfect.
  165. I love everything about your party!! I felt how guests enjoyed it and celebrated your love for each other. Really a memorable one! Hope mine would be as beautiful as this!
  166. Ahhhh! Such a great idea, and it looks like it was an absolute dream :) Amazing! Congrats!
  167. perhaps one of the most simply beautiful weddings I have ever seen. Full of heart. Congratulations, belatedly.
    (just found your blog--wow! so glad I am here and I will be back)
  168. how gorgeous this is the type of wedding i would love xxx
  169. Katherine Y | Nov 21, 2011
    Your wedding was super pretty!! I love how it was all so organic. This is my first visit to your site and it is just super awesome. You really inspire me to create stuff now
  170. pri | Jan 21, 2012
    I have been considering the same thing for my wedding. Your site came up when I googled "surprise wedding". Everything is so beautiful. Going to steal a few of your ideas. Your taste is flawless ;-)
  171. Wow, everything is so beautiful. This is how I imagine my wedding. I love that you surprised everyone :) so sweet.
  172. This is the most beautiful creative wedding I've ever seen!
  173. You're such an inspiration. I love your blog. And it's such a beautiful wedding! I wish you two the best, a marriage filled with blissfulness.
  174. Juliana | Apr 8, 2012
    Wow your wedding gives me so much information for my own, you look absolutely amazing!so very beautiful and chic, I love the rustic vintage theme. Congrats!
  175. It was simple yet colorful and fun! I love how the tables are decorated with lovely centerpieces. Flowers do have a magical effect in whatever place you put them. This wedding picnic is one of the best themes I’ve ever seen! Also, the food presentation is great! The colors of the food served made it all perfect!
  176. Such a wonderful idea to create the surprise for everyone! Everything looked SO beautiful, your style is VERY inspiring! Thank you for sharing with us.
  177. It's amazing wedding ceremony. I come to know about your blog post via Apartment Therapy's blog post!

    http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/5-beautiful-and-budget-friendly-ideas-for-summer-parties-172958

    I'm food lover and very excited after reading food arrangement.
  178. Hilary in Brighton UK | Jun 23, 2012
    Absolutely in love with your day and that you've shared it all. The photos and story are just wonderful, blinking back tears of emotion. May you be very happy and creative for a long, long time xx
  179. Your wedding makes my heart sing! Every detail is just so perfect and well thought out, I'm sure it was an amazing day! I love the bottles handing on string, and the lemonade bar is amazing! Wishing you all the best in your married life. X

    thecottagediaries.blogspot.co.nz/
  180. allison | Jul 9, 2012
    Hey!i've checked out our blog several times and never made a comment but i decided to share today...hee. i love everything about it! that's all there is, there is no more...i mean really when someone says love it! they should mean it...and i do! muchas gracias! for the coolest ideas.
  181. 2 years later I bet you are still reveling... what a fantastic celebration!
  182. Oh, such a beautiful wedding, congratulations!!!
    Now I wish I could get married again ;)
  183. Wow! Amy, your wedding is beyond incredible. Such a perfect blend of details and beautiful things. Congratulations x
  184. This is such a beautiful wedding. I've seen the decorations before at other blogs but never knew it was your wedding. Such a great surprise :) Congrats!
  185. DHE | Aug 15, 2012
    please add me to your updates
    what a beautiful inspiring website
    DHE
  186. Jane | Aug 21, 2012
    i so love your wedding <3
    the style, color, everything!
    it was so you.
    :D
    Btw, I'm jane from the Philippines.
    i found your blog and fell in love with it.
    Especially, the "about me" of this blog. it was so inspiring :)
  187. ABSOLUTELY STUNNING! I'm in love with everything you've done here! Congratulations.
  188. Rachel | Aug 31, 2012
    It may be a little late - but Congrats to you both on what seems like the most beautiful event of you lives together so far ...! Great website Amy..x
  189. cecil | Sep 13, 2012
    i cant help but comment..what a one sweet perfect day!! whew
  190. WOW! Congratulations!! I love all the little details of your celebration. Especially the trays and lemonade jars.

    I wish you both a very happy and fun forever!
  191. WOW! Congratulations!! I love all the little details of your celebration. Especially the trays and lemonade jars.

    I wish you both a very happy and fun forever!!
  192. wow..... you had me in tears. what a beautiful story. with the most beautiful photos! Congrats!

    Also love your website - I'm a new follower now!
  193. Lovely! All in this page is full of love! Great!!!
  194. Priscilla | Dec 8, 2012
    Gosh I have been on your website for years and nowfinallyyour Married?! Best Wishes to you and him the both!
  195. Absolutely beautiful, love the layout, design and the laid back atmosphere.
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  197. Debbie | Feb 11, 2013
    my very first visit...i love your website...A very inspiring wedding ceremony...indeed....
  198. Denise | Mar 12, 2013
    Thank you for posting pics of you and your hubby's special day. I am very happy for you.
    Wishing you and yours much love and happiness for many, many MANY years to come. :)
  199. I do not often cry while reading a post. But your faces full of joy, and the love of those around you, I think it's a valid reason to be emotional.
  200. Jimmyfish | Apr 3, 2013
    Well Done and have a lovely time togethert.Love the idea but I think that caraffes would acco more of a bouquet although the p[ictures look superbe.
  201. Aurora | Apr 10, 2013
    I simply loved it! congratulations!
  202. These are great photos. I love the use of glass bottles as small vases! Such a creative way to incorporate a rustic elegance and simplicity.
  203. Going through this blog was quite smooth. I liked the simple and effective design of this blog.
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  204. Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts.
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  205. Debbie Young | Aug 11, 2013
    Just one question: did the guests follow up with gifts, or did you all miss out on that part by being spontaneous?
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  207. Royena | Nov 3, 2013
    Today is my first time visiting your blog
    (was looking for activities for me and my daughter to do) and I had to take a peek on this 'Surprise Wedding'.

    I LOVE everything about your special day; the colours, the feel, it seems so relaxed, fun and honest. I had to show my husband. I smiled through it all. Thank you for sharing your day with us, and as late as it is...still, congrats.
  208. Juliet | Feb 8, 2014
    LOVE IT! Very close to what I envision for my upcoming nuptials. I just want to have a fun, relaxed party...take a moment to get married...then carry on. Your surprise wedding pics and menu are inspiring. :)
  209. SarahP | Apr 21, 2014
    I am simply in love with everything. Your taste and styling are impeccable. I can not wait to have my own backyard surprise wedding. I guarantee it will be nowhere near as beautiful and well done as this, as I have no eye for art! But I think you for the inspiration.
  210. Roxane | Jun 30, 2014
    What a lovely and very moving post <3
    I was totally charmed by everything : the idea of a "surprise wedding", you (love makes you sparkle!), the beauty of your couple, the decoration, your creativity and taste, the quality of the picts (congrats to Jonathan Ong, he really has an amazing eye!), and this overhanging flowers wall above the buffet, WOW !!! I loved everything.
    I'm thinking to take some deco ideas one day, when I'll make a party :)
    Your blog definitely is a huuuuge crush :-}
    Keep doing what you do, transmit what you give and be who you are, cause you just seem amazing ! And Mark and Sukie too ^^
    All the best and love to you in the future :)
    Love from Switzerland
    Roxane
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