Real Wedding; Ash and Adam @ Burnham Grove Estate
About You Two;
Now, How did you two meet?
Adam and I first met when he was invited by a friend I went to high school with as her plus one to my 20th birthday party. He just so happened to go to uni with some mutual friends of mine and we just stayed in each other’s friendship orbit for years, not realising that both of us had a crush on one another. We were always out of sync in terms of relationships and were never single at the same time so nothing eventuated until 8 years later!
Who popped the question and how did it happen?
Adam popped the question in 2021 right in the heart of COVID lockdown. We had a nice dinner in our little apartment on a random Tuesday night to celebrate us getting fully vaccinated but little did I know there was a proposal brewing! It was very low key, but that’s exactly how I wanted it.
Why did you choose your venue and how was the venue choosing process?
As we were locked down, I had a lot of time on my hands so I started looking at a bunch of venues online and start making a list. We knew we wanted our furbaby at the ceremony so it ruled out all the non-pet friendly venues and then we wanted something that was naturally beautiful but also somewhat of a blank canvas. We ended up going to see only one venue after lockdown lifted and it was Burnham Grove Estate. We fell in love instantly and we locked it in. It was the perfect backdrop with the rolling hills, while the marquee was a great base to then put my own stamp on it. We also loved that it was far enough outside of Sydney to have that “destination feel” without having to make people travel too far.
Quick Fire Questions;
How many wedding guests did you have?
Sit down or Cocktail Style?
Cocktail – we wanted to be able to mingle with our guests and be a bit more relaxed
Planning The Wedding;
Was planning the wedding stressful or did you enjoy the journey?
It definitely started off as fun and enjoyable but by the end I was getting very stressed. I said if I never planned another wedding again it would be too soon! But now that it is over, of course I miss it! I was super organised so it helped and I could not imagine how much more stressed I would be if I hadn’t been so on top of things! It all paid off in the end as the day went off without a hitch!
How involved were you both in the wedding planning, did one of you take more of the lead on certain aspects than others or were you both equally involved?
We made all decisions together but I definitely took the reins in terms of the visual direction and overall theme – I work as an art director in advertising so I found this super enjoyable and I knew my husband trusted me to put together something beautiful. I took control of a lot of the planning and coordination and when I had narrowed down choices to a shortlist of 3 for suppliers or a few different options, then we would make a call together. It was OUR wedding and I wanted to build a day that reflected both of us, as individuals and as a couple.
What was the top couple of non-negotiables or important must-have’s at the wedding for you both?
Our non-negotiable was an incredible photographer. We knew that these photos would be the thing that we use to relive our day so that was an important investment to us. We took a similar approach to videography as well. We went with Fiona + Bobby and Scouts Honour for photography and videography respectively – we loved both of their work but the fact that they had worked together a bunch of times just sealed the deal for us. It was important for us that we had a great personal relationship with our photographers as well as they were the ones that we would be spending a good part of the day with as well – and I can say hand on heart that we made 2 life long friends with Fi and Bobby. They were perfect.
I would say the other non-negotiable for us was a venue that allowed our greyhound to be there. She was our ‘groomshound’ and she is pretty much our child! So having her there was a must. Luckily, Burnham Grove were more than happy to accomodate us!
Tell us about your dress and that dress-finding process?
I have a very particular style – I’m a bit alternative and punky – so I wasn’t sure if I wanted a black or a white dress. I never wear white, but I thought, if I was going to wear white any time in my life it was my wedding day. So, I ended up doing both! I wore a white gown for the ceremony and then for the reception (after sunset photos) I slipped into a 2-piece black reception skirt and top. I had the black dress custom made on Etsy, which was perfect as I was able to decide the fabric and style and it was perfect.
Finding the white dress was trickier. I didn’t want anything too ‘princess-y’, too big, too full or too lacey. I wanted something clean and classic, but with a little special something that gave it an edge. Which was harder to find than I thought! I didn’t know what I was looking for, until I saw it. I trawled through so many bridal websites and finally found one I LOVED but it was only in Melbourne. I tried on a bunch in Sydney and many were nice and perfectly fine, but not “the one”. I knew I would always wonder ‘what if’ if I didn’t just go and try on the dress I had found online in Melbourne – so I booked a day trip to ease my mind. As soon as I tried it on, I knew it was the one. I bought it on the spot. It was a classic white crepe. mermaid style dress with buttons all the way down the back and a gorgeous back cut-out feature. It was exactly what I was looking for.
I am so happy I had the second dress however – by the end of the afternoon, my back was KILLING me due to the long heavy train! I was able to move so much more freely with the black dress and it made the night so much nicer in the end. Plus…it let me tap into my dark side for the party!!
What sort of theme, vibe or style did you go for?
I have fairly eclectic taste – I like the dark and quirky things in life so our theme was dark romantic. Our colour story was predominantly red, gold and black but my bridesmaids added some purples and deep blues to the colour palette. I had lots of skulls and black and gold lanterns and vases with black candles. Once the black and red florals were put all together, it was even more beautiful than I had imagined it.
On the Day;
How did you both feel wedding morning?
We were buzzing – absolute bliss. We couldn’t stop giggling. We were officially married! It took a lot for us both to get to this point and I think we were both so proud of ourselves and each other for getting to a place of pure happiness.
What was the best part or moment of your day?
I know it sounds cliche, but it was seeing him at the end of the aisle waiting for me. There were 80 people there, but I could only see him.
Anything you would change about your wedding or anything that didn’t go to plan?
People told me, just be prepared for things to go wrong, cos they always do! But honestly, absolutely nothing did! I can say hand on heart that I wouldn’t change a thing
Are there any rituals, sentiments or traditions you incorporated into the day?
We wanted to keep things semi-traditional for the ceremony but we wanted to put our own flair on things. I had my big sister walk me down the aisle, I walked down to a spoken word poem set to music instead of a traditional track, we did a lei exchange ceremony (in honour of my husband’s polynesian heritage) which is where we became officially married. Other than that, we wanted more relaxed festivities. And honestly, I wouldn’t do it any other way.
After the Wedding;
Describe newlywed life in a couple of words?
Honestly, it feels exactly the same, which is how it should be! Marriage didn’t really change things for us except it has kick started the next phase of our life which is lots of travelling, lots of greyhounds and just a whole bunch of adventure!
Best investment or money well spent on the wedding that you made?
I would say our photographers and videographers were our best investment – the day goes by so fast and it was a blur so we were so happy that it was so well documented so we can relive it over and over again. But I would also say investing in a venue that had an inclusive package was so helpful. It meant that I had a wedding coordinator who linked all our vendors together and ensured the day ran smoothly. I don’t think I would have been able to do all of that on top of everything else!
Budget-over, under or what you estimated?
We went slightly over budget – it was the little costs that you don’t think about that tended to creep up and add up on you. Things like catering for the night before/morning of or last minute umbrellas and fans for shade and keeping cool on a 30deg day. I wish I had kept a little extra room as a buffer but we made it work in the end!