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

Hi! Well. Where do we start? We met almost 10 years ago (we got married just after our 9 year anniversary) and have been together ever since.

Matt’s an electrician who spends his days climbing power poles and I’m an Art Director working in Brisbane. I think that Matt and I are very much ‘same but different.’ Deep down, we value and enjoy the same things, but we are both very, very different people. We share a genuine love of the outdoors, and spend our holidays exploring remote corners of our beautiful country in our 4wd. Matt loves gadgets, golf and metal fabrication, I’m generally designing, op-shopping or making something. We both have a deep love for photography, vintage paraphernalia, old buildings (we have a beloved 100y.o. Queenslander), and our two dogs – Teddy the Goldie and Hugo the Greyhound.

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…

With only 18 people, including us, we opted to keep things really simple, both out of desire and necessity! Our wedding was in the middle of a three and a half week roadtrip – we drove from Brisbane down through the NSW/VIC backcountry and across the Great Ocean Road, boarded the Spirit of Tasmania, then circled around the West and South of Tassie before our wedding on the East Coast. We self-sufficiently camped the whole way… so with our tent on our roof, our kitchen in the boot and our Wedding outfits in a dust-sealed suitcase, we didn’t have a lot of room! We had to keep everything we brought with us in two small crates in the backseat. As a creative, I think it helped immensely in making sure we really focused on what mattered on the day, rather than getting tied up with small details that whilst fun to work on, can be overwhelming or unsustainable. It kept the footprint of our wedding small, which matters so much today. As for the style, we chose the venue – and really Tasmania as a whole – because of its natural beauty.

Even though we never saw the venue in person beforehand, we both knew it just felt right when we found it, and had trust in that. Avalon’s glass walls make it feel so immersive; in one direction you’ve got endless views of the ocean and in the other the gums are almost cocoon-like in the way they shelter the house. We spent hours just watching the weather and the light change… it really is a spectacular space. So everything was selected to be sympathetic to the surroundings and the venue itself, simple glass lanterns, native gum leaf foliage, beautiful warm timbers.

Tell us about your main outfits:

Emma – I didn’t plan on making such a bold choice in the beginning. That said, I never stepped foot in a bridal store, I just knew it wasn’t for me. I struggled with reconciling the decision to wear colour, and judging by the amount of forums I read online – many do. “Would I look ‘bridal’? What does that even mean? Would I regret it?” Eventually I realised that none of it mattered. I initially spent a lot of time browsing online, both locally and internationally. I fell in love with many dresses, but never really found one that was just right – feminine, simple and bold, with a timeless vintage feel. In a weird turn of events I spoke to a colleague during a 13-floor fire-drill stair descent about my conundrum (something I hadn’t mentioned to anyone else) and she recommended her dressmaker to me. When I my Mum and I visited the dressmakers store a few weeks later, she said that they ordinarily didn’t stock velvet, however they had special ordered some black velvet for another customer some weeks ago, and when it arrived they unrolled it to find that what they had been sent was red, not black. It was perfect. A lot of people asked afterwards what made me decide to wear red, and quite simply put – it just felt like me.

Matt – Matt being a typical tradie, is more comfortable in a shirt and shorts, and feels like a bit of a fish out of water in anything remotely formal. We kept his search simple and pretty low key – one morning at Myer and he was sorted. Initially he tried on a suit, but he was so uncomfortable wearing (he called himself an imposter) and it showed. Wanting to be a little more casual, he picked out a woven navy blazer by Rodd & Gun and was stoked with a pair of chinos by one of his favourite brands, RM Williams. He surprised the heck out of me by picking up a floral shirt, which he said felt more like him than the plain white that I was expecting.

What were some of the most memorable/unique moments from the day?
Oh this is tough. There are many. But if we had to pick a few:

  • When we first arrived, and opened the gate in the stone fence at Avalon. The gate lines up perfectly with the hallway, which goes straight down the side of the house with uninterrupted views to the ocean. We spent the first 15 minutes gawking, it is so beautiful,
    and we couldn’t believe we had it to ourselves for three days.
  • I think we both really loved our vows, which we wrote ourselves. We’re not a super mushy couple – Matts known to be a larrikin – but he wrote the sweetest, most beautiful heartfelt words… before working in a fart joke. My 3 year old nephew also decided to do some
    mid-ceremony landscaping and threw around the small boulders that covered the hill at Avalon, nearly missing our videographer.
  • After the ceremony our photographer Zoe led us down to Avalon’s private beach, which was so much fun – walking in the sand, looking at shells and climbing over the rocky shore.
  • Probably the most memorable moment for both of us was the most unexpected. It was late that night after dinner. Most of our family had left, the fire was roaring, the huge convertible couches at Avalon were folded down to chaises, and those who were left just sat there drinking, talking and laughing.

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

Be thoughtful. Think about what you want, your values, your beliefs. Inject those values into everything you do. Don’t get caught up in things that don’t matter – people will remember how you made them feel more than anything else. Lastly, don’t succumb to the pressures of ‘having it all.’ Your day will reflect you both as a couple, but it does not define you.

Photography: Zoe Morley | Videography: Lusy Productions | Ceremony and Reception location: Avalon Retreats | Celebrant: Rachael Calvert Weddings | Bride’s dress: Custom Made- Selective Fine Fabrics | Groom’s suit: Rodd & Gunn | Bride’s shoes: Blundstone and second hand Betsey Johnson | Groom’s shoes: R.M.Williams | Rings: Vintage | Makeup and Hair: Trinity King Hair and Makeup | Fragrance: Replica Lazy Sunday | Hire: Salters Hire | Flora: Swallows Nest Farm | Catering and Beverages: Wattlebanks

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