`Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love, what is unique about you and your relationship…

Kyle and I met when I was seventeen and he was twenty. I was in my last year of high school and after finishing school, made the monumental decision to move from my rural country home town, to the big, bustling city of Brisbane. When I first met Kyle, he had long hair and a bare face. I fell in love with his wild personality, his electric sense of humour and his overall charm of being himself. Kyle is the perfect counterbalance to my personality. Six years later, on a trip to Melbourne, we became engaged and Kyle gifted me with his late Mother’s ring, a ring that I still to this day, wear every day. Without plan, May became a very important month in our home. All those years prior we had first met in May, then the cards fell that we became engaged in May, and, you guessed it, we had to be married in May. May 2018 was our eighth anniversary spent together and became our wedding date.

I work in finance and Kyle works in management and we have two outstandingly furry black cats who rule our home. Loving cats, we worked with Clare Vacha an Australian illustrator based in the UK. Clare designed an illustration of the cats for our wedding thank you cards that were placed on the reception tables. I do not think that there was not one of our guests who was not expecting to see one cat touch at our wedding!

Through the first eight years of our relationship, Kyle and I have both grown together and have worked hard together to create the life that we share in now. We both hold strong values and believe in putting each other before ourselves, of being genuine and honest, communicating openly and holding an unequivocal love for each other. For our vows we chose to each write a personal paragraph that we kept a secret, and then together we wrote a set of vows to read to each other.

We are both very family orientated, Kyle is the youngest of his family and I, in turn, am the oldest of my family. When it came to the wedding, it was very important to us both to be able to include all our family in the wedding. The day was a strong reminder of how much gratitude we hold to our families and how fortunate we are to have them.

Tell us about your special day, was there a specific theme or style? Tell us a little about the setting, the styling and some of your favourite details…

The running joke was that when anyone would ask us what the theme of our wedding was, we would say Sara and Kyle. The thing that is most funny of all, is that this turned out to be true. One of the first things that we decided on, after the date, was that we wanted to have Kata Lane provide their magical Tipi’s for our reception. The top three location settings we had were industrial, native natural bush and the desert. Coming across the State Mine Heritage Park, we very quickly found that this venue met two out of our three wishes and that it felt to be the perfect place for us to be wed. The Bath House, where we held our ceremony, is such a beautiful and expansive space, it is so raw, and we felt that really allowed us to create the ideal ceremony space that we desired. The looming arched windows, worn brick walls and cement flooring could not be beat. The State Mine Heritage Park is surrounded by a beautiful gully, with encompassing mountain bush views. Sara’s Dad, Greg and Brother, Kyle, hand crafted the bar tables and wooden tables that we used for the cake table, the signing table and the seating chart table. The tables were crafted from American Redwood, Japanese Cedar and Himalayan Cedar and were paired with black metal bases to tie in with the industrial feel of the Bath House. They also created the wooden backdrop wall that featured the custom neon sign which read what became the tagline of our wedding “the Gaddes two”.

Some of our favourite features from the reception set-up, apart from the Tipi’s themselves, would have been having the black, acrylic drink stirrers made for each guest’s name, as their place card. We chose to have five long tables, and each table was named after a surname from our families. We asked each guest to return their RSVP card with a song suggestion for the reception, so it was an awesome moment when a guest would hear their chosen song playing. For the bar – hiring the caravan bar from the Travelling Bar was the way to go! We chose to have signature drinks “the Sweet Sara” and “Kyle’s Moody Blues” which was something we carried on from our engagement party a few years ago.

The florals! We had Sara’s sister in law, Ash, take charge of the florals for our wedding. Getting to go to the flower markets and experiencing hand picking out every flower that was used, was exceptionally memorable. Ash holds a very natural floral talent, and it was amazing to be able to pick honestly any flower, or piece of greenery, that caught our eye, and to then have Ash create the floral masterpieces from what we chose.

 

Tell us about your main outfits:

Sara: I always knew that if I was ever to be married, that the one dress that I would want to wear would be my Nan’s wedding dress. I felt that no other dress could compare to the beauty and grace that my Nan’s dress held. My Nan was married in 1968 and her wedding dress was a custom designed dress, made just for her, from the most elegant French Guipure lace. I was exceptionally lucky that my Nan had kept her dress for the past fifty years, and that the dress was in such well kept condition that it looked like it was made yesterday. The first time I tried the dress on I was at my Nans house with my Nan and my Mum, and what we believe was meant to be, the dress was the perfect fit, so no alterations were needed. The dress is adorned with rose coloured pearls, and not one pearl was missing after fifty years in storage. My Nan originally wore a rose-coloured satin gown under the dress, but I chose to wear a white simple style, form fitting, strapless dress underneath. I felt that the dress was a masterpiece on its own accord and did not need any accessories. I am the eldest granddaughter, and the first to be married, so it was a very treasured moment to be able to wear my Nan’s dress. I chose to go with black heels, to tie in with my bridesmaids being in white and black and I loved the feeling of both my bridesmaids and I being in white dresses. My wedding was the first time that all my bridesmaids had been bridesmaids, so it was very special to share in those moments for the first time, together.

Kyle: When it came to my outfit, I was easy and knew that I would like to go with an all-black suit. Upon seeing the velvet suit jacket, I was set! On the morning of the wedding, Sara and I were able to have a moment just us two, before the bridal party arrived and I shipped off to be with the groomsmen. Sara, for my wedding gift, had a pair of cufflinks custom made for me that were a photograph of my Mum. As my Mum has passed, it was a really treasured sentiment to be able to have the cufflinks with her on them. For my footwear, I went to Downes Shoes in Brisbane and left with a pair of canvas, black Dr Marten boots.

  1. What were some of the most memorable/unique moments from the day?

A very tough call to make, the entire day felt like it had so many wondrous moments that we will be cherishing for the rest of our lives. If we had to narrow it down and name a few, one of our special moments was having Joshua Mason play a beautiful, instrumental piece on violin for the bridesmaids, and Sara accompanied by her Dad, to walk down the aisle to. The sound of the violin was ethereal, and as the ceremony space was of a large, industrial and open nature, the sound of the violin fully enveloped the entire ceremony space. We chose to set the ceremony space up in a circular nature, with all our guests surrounding us standing in the middle of the room. We felt that this created a very inclusive environment, and that there was not one person in the room who was not involved in the ceremony with us.

We also chose to set out our wedding day a little differently, and one thing we did was we decided to have the bridal parties meet at the venue a few hours prior to the ceremony. As we had decided to be married at dusk, we knew that it was imperative to have our wedding photos earlier to take advantage of the beautiful lighting that the State Mine Heritage Park offers. Kyle, the groomsmen and Sara’s Dad arrived at the venue first, and Sara and her bridesmaids travelled to the venue together in Sara’s uncles Kombi van. To begin with we had a private moment inside the Bath House (where our ceremony was held) which consisted of just us two, and our photographers Grace and Tim from Willow and Co. As we chose to have most of our wedding photos beforehand, we left the venue and headed to a mountain location for photos of just us two. We planned it so that upon our return to the venue, our guests had arrived and were beginning to enjoy the wedding festivities while the sun set. The moment of being able to walk into the space where our guests were, was overwhelmingly special. Any nerves that may have been lingering, they were quickly washed away by being able to see our guests, give them a hug and kiss and to be able to share in that moment with them.

  

Any advice for other couples planning to spend the rest of their lives together?

Love each other, deeply and honestly. Appreciate each other for who you truly are and remember that you are both genuinely there for each other to guide, support and cherish each other during the highs and the lows that a long life together brings. The best advice that we received, as hard as it may be, was to try and take some time during the celebrations for you and your newly wedded partner. It is so easy to be wrapped up in the moment with all your guests but try and remember that the day is really meant for you and your partner, everyone is there for you two and that this is your moment. Just try and take a moment when you can, to soak in the feeling and the atmosphere of it being your wedding. The day itself will feel like it passes in a blur, a blur of love, happiness and celebrating but being able to recount and reminisce with your newly married love and all your loved ones after the day is something to look forward to. It is true that in this one day, you will create monumental memories that will last an entire lifetime. We also think that it is important for couples to remember one, very vital factor, it is your wedding! The day is for you two and you should not let anything or anyone else cloud that feeling. Stay true to yourself and what you want the day to be, at the end of it all, the most important thing is that you and your partner have professed and reiterated your commitments to each other, and it is you two, together.

Photography: Willow and Co.- Bride’s Dress: Sara’s wedding dress was her Nan’s wedding dress- Reception Dress: Jarlo London– Kyle’s Outfit: own suit pants with Burton black velvet suit jacket- Rings: Precious Stones Jewellers and Love Audry Rose and Natalie Marie Jewellery– Shoes: Dr Martens Boots and Lulus– Make-Up: Euphoria Hair by Kellie Adler– Ceremony and Reception location: The Lithgow State Mine Heritage Park and Railway– Celebrant: Donna Hanson-Squires– Styling: Velvet lounge from Penny Lane Studio– Flora: Black Daisy Flowers- Hire: Kata Lane Event Hire– Food/Beverage/Catering: Smoking Brothers and the Travelling Bar– Cake: Jamie Collins– Custom Neon Sign: Neon Republic