Samantha and Alex- Photography by Lucy Li
Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love, what is unique about you and your relationship.
Alex & I met & fell in love in NZ. We are both living in Australia at the moment after spending some time exploring the world together.
I’m a vet & Alex is a secondary school teacher. Alex proposed to me a year before we got married. We were in the middle of a gum forest, in the rain, with our new mud-covered puppy, on a spontaneous weekend away to the countryside – and I guess that sums us and our relationship up pretty well. We love the outdoors, adventures, animals & each other. We like the simple things in life, and make sure to always be kind to each other.
We picked Jack Johnsons ‘I got you’ as our song to walk down the aisle to. I think the lyrics put the way we feel into simple terms –
“I’ve got everything, I got you”.
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.
Our day was perfect and everything we hoped for. When planning our wedding the thing that was most important to us was having a relaxed, happy vibe for the day. No pressure, no strict schedule, no need for anything to feel rushed. We pictured people listening to good music & relaxing in the sunshine with a drink in their hand. Everything fell in to place on the day and we created exactly what we set out to.
We didn’t really have a specific theme on the day – everything was a little mismatched – Moroccan lanterns, Spanish paella, middle – eastern shisha pipes, Balinese umbrellas and wildflowers everywhere.
The wedding was held on Alex’s family farm, we decided on that location as I know it means a lot to him and his family. Alex spent his whole childhood on the same road, starting in a small cottage and eventually the family built the house you see in the photos today. Every part of the farm has years of hard work and love put in to it, it was such a special place to get married.
Tell us about your main outfits:
My entire outfit came from Byron Bay. I used wedding dress shopping as an excuse for a weekend in Byron with my mum and sisters. I wanted a dress that I still looked like ‘me’ in. Something I could dance in & sit down on the grass with all of our guests. The dress I found was absolutely perfect for me. My shoes were picked in a similar way, there’s nothing worse than not being able to enjoy yourself because your feet are sore and my forever soles shoes were the most comfortable heels I have ever worn.
I decided on a long veil because let’s be honest – when else are you ever going to wear a veil in your life? Enjoy being a bride while you can.
Alex wanted something classic and timeless. He picked a charcoal Barkers suit with suspenders & a bow tie. It’ll never go out of fashion and he know he can look back on the photos & love it for years to come. He’s a very practical person and insisted he get something he can wear again.
What were some of the most memorable/unique moments from the day?
When I asked Alex what the most memorable moments were for him – he said seeing me come down the aisle. His words were ‘Even though I knew it was going to happen, it happens in every wedding – I still wasn’t prepared for the feelings I’d have when it actually did happen’
The space of time between the ceremony and the reception was probably the best time for us. We had friends who didn’t know each other playing the games together and laughing, our favourite songs playing over the farm and the weather was absolutely perfect.
Our sparkler exit was incredible. I’d asked my dad the previous year to pick up some sparklers while fireworks were on sale. He accidentally bought a box which had all sorts of fireworks in it. Everyone in the wedding had a sparkler and we walked back down the aisle with all our family & friends surrounding us, smiling and cheering.
When the groomsmen found out about the extra fireworks – we were treated to an impromptu fireworks display over the farm. It’s a moment I know neither of us will ever forget and I smile every time I see those photos.
Many of the moments that made our wedding special were created in the week leading up to the wedding. Family flew in from all around the world and everyone pitched in to help. Alex & his brothers all worked together to build the church frame in the paddock where we had our ceremony, they hadn’t all been together in a few years so being able to spend all of that time together was invaluable.
Any advice for other couples planning to spend the rest of their lives together?
You can’t go wrong if you marry your best friend. It’s the same advice everyone gives you when you’re about to get married, (and that’s because it’s good advice and so true) – make sure you focus on the big picture things. Family, friends and each other. No one cares if the napkins don’t match the flowers, they’re there because they love you and want to see you happy on your big day.
Photography: Lucy Li | Ceremony and Reception location: Alex’s family farm in Hawkes Bay, NZ | Celebrant: Shane Kelly | Bride’s Dress: Canyon Moon Mesh Gown by Spell & the Gypsy Collective | Grooms Suit: Barkers | Rings: Alex’s ring designed and made by Uniform Black, Sam’s ring made by Carla Maxine | Engagement ring: Tiffany & Co. | Shoes: Sam’s- Peace & Love by Forever Soles. Alex wore Double Oak Mills | Jewellery: Sam also wore her late Nana’s Sapphire engagement ring | Make-up: Greta Andrews | Hair: Both Groom and Bride by Sean at KOH hairdressers, Altona, VIC, styled by sister Sasha on the day | Fragrance: ‘Flora’ by Gucci | Bridesmaid’s: Spell & the Gypsy Collective | Groomsmen: Hallensteins | Entertainment: DJ 4 U | Flora: Flower arrangements Dannevirke, wildflowers for the tables and bouquets| Handmaid NZ and Hiremaster Dannevirke| Marquee: Hiremaster Dannevirke | Food/beverages/catering: Paella by Paella A Go Go , alcohol from Barrelhouse | Cake: Debbie Fredericks |