The year of the Micro Wedding
Max and Greta’s story
How they tied the knot in Australia during lockdown.
Having been a Bridal Designer for nearly 30 years I have seen countless numbers of brides and tried to answer their questions. I thought I had heard it all.
One of the key bits of advice I have given is that it is very important accept that you cant control everything and that something can always go wrong!
I did not know then how right I was.
My son Max announced his engagement to Greta in the summer of 2019 and the planning began.
The engagement party was a triumph. All our family and friends made it. Even Greta’s parents made it over from Sydney. Everything was booked and we got down to the fun part which meant planning the dress and shopping for the Men’s suits.
Greta and I had a wonderful day with a leading UK fabric designer who designed the most beautiful bespoke fabric for the dress. It was particularly fabulous that they then had to come for Christmas so that the dress could be fitted and finished.
When we waved them off in January we were all ready to meet again at the Kangaroo Valley Bush Retreat in New South Wales for the big day in March 2020.
Or so we thought.
The first thing that happened as they arrived back in Australia in January was the devastating bush fires. The wedding venue was completely destroyed. Greta’s Mum did heroic work finding an alternative venue which was available on the same day as everyone had bought their flights. She did find a gorgeous venue called Jaspers Berry who could do the same day and we all heaved a sigh of relief and got on with the final arrangements.
Then of course Covid started. All plans were now off as we went into lockdown.
Max and Greta are both emergency doctors and both worked on their wedding day!
At work on their wedding day.
They got to dress up on their wedding day after all
This photo was widely shared on social media and they still had a lovely celebration with work colleagues on the day that they should have got married. The wedding had to be postponed.( It is now rebooked for 2022)
Wedding planning has become very difficult this year and nearly all my 2020 brides have had to delay or rearrange ther weddings in some way. It has been a challenge and an opportunity to rethink styles and adapt dresses to smaller events. Many brides are having small ceremonies as numbers have been reduced while still planning a larger ceremony for later.
Max and Greta decided that this was their preferred option. It was not easy to accept that the wedding was going to happen without family and friends but we all agreed that this was the right thing to do.
We have all had to change our ideas about what is a “perfect wedding” so today im handing over to Max and Greta to share their story with you.
The girls on the back of the farm yute
Max kept hold of the crucial items
Tell us a bit about your dress design, what you loved about it the most
For our micro wedding I wanted something completed different. I asked Stephanie if she could make me something that was fun, slinky, backless and most importantly a dress that I could wear over and over. I know that there are countless fabrics stashed away under the desk in the Mumbles Flagship store that are absolutely but haven’t found their way into a design yet, so I asked if we could use one of those. Fast fashion is such a huge environmental issue which is important to us both, Stephanie has introduced a recycled fabric into the new collection, used cut offs from lace to make bunting decorations for our wedding. So, with that in mind we tried to make a dress which would be re-worn in lots of different looks, from fabrics that were already in the shop and that would fit the theme of outdoor bush micro-wedding.
The Farm in New South Wales where they said “I do”
What venue did you choose?
We wanted to have the ceremony at the beach where Max proposed. However, the logistics were all a bit tricky to work around, including a 30 minute hike to get down to the beach. One of my bridesmaids offered her family farm in the Hunter Valley, a wine region 2 hours north of Sydney. It was absolutely perfect, we would have the relaxed affair we envisioned.
In the end why did you decide to go ahead with a micro wedding rather than cancel completely?
We got to the point where all we wanted was to be married. We’ve had to re-evaluate over and over again what was and wasn’t important to us about a wedding. Ultimately, what it came down to was that we wanted to start our marriage to one another and were tired of waiting. The wedding will just have to come after the marriage.
How did you celebrate with the people who couldn’t be there? e.g did you have have them on Skype or phone
We had all our families join over the phone. As for the celebrations … well we will be having a full celebration in Feb 2022
The bride and groom facetiming across the world
What advise would you give to couples currently considering whether to postpone
Do whats right for you is all I can say! Whatever you decide though you will not regret it. We had the most magical day. Though this is far from the wedding that I planned, I’m seeing this as the pre-wedding wedding. So many couple have a small ceremony in a registry office followed by what they perceive as their actual wedding. Well this is how I’m seeing our day; we will have the big wedding and celebration I’ve always dreamed off, but for now we had our small ceremony, just in the outdoors and not in an office block.
What decorative touches did you choose
This was all Edwina! She drove around Sydney finding vintage champagne flutes from Op-Shops, tea lights and candle holders. We used a table runner of eucalyptus leaves from around the farm and scattered candles throughout it.
Tell us what food you ate
We drove up to the farm the night before and prepped food for the following day. On the day itself, our friends all pitched in and helped cook the food for the day. Probably the hardest part of the day for Max was to relinquish control of the kitchen and let someone else cook, even if that someone is a professional chef in a hatted restaurant. (Aussie restaurants receive hats, where the rest of the world do Michelin stars).
The bride and groom cooking up a storm
What did they drink
Our original wedding venue was BYO so we have about 20 boxes of wine waiting to be enjoyed. So we tucked into a few of those. We bought our wine from a beautiful little vineyard in Western Australia called Fermoy, they also supplied the wine for Princess Mary’s wedding to the Prince of Denmark.
Were there any particular highlights to having an intimate ceremony?
It was the most wonderful day. Although it was nothing to what I had planned, I didn’t wear my incredible and original wedding dress, our families far away, we were still surrounded by friends and we importantly we had each other. Also this way Max was able to talk about me bush weeing in his vows in front of 10 friends and not 150!
What approach did you take to cutting your guest list?
I didn’t see it as cutting the guest list. We had 10 close friends and family on the phone. No guest was un-invited; they will be all coming to our celebrations in 2022. Its just that we invited friends to the micro-wedding.
The couples first dance (around the fire)
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