Real Wedding; Emma and James @ Berry School of Arts
About you two;
Now, How did you two meet?
We met at uni when we were both studying our Masters of Physiotherapy. James had moved up for 2 years from Melbourne to do the masters program and the rest is history!
Who popped the Question and how did it happen?
James proposed at the top of Pigeon House Mountain at Easter time in 2021.
Why did you choose your venue and how was the venue choosing process?
We chose our family friend’s garden for the ceremony. It was a special place to Emma as she grew up playing in that garden as a child. It’s leafy, green and relaxed, it feels like an oasis in the middle of Berry. Then we had our reception at the Berry School of Arts and we are SO pleased we had it there, it was exactly what we wanted. After looking
into a few of the venues in Berry we decided to go for the school of arts as it was a blank canvas with a large capacity limit and we could party there until midnight!
Quick Fire Questions;
How many wedding guests did you have?
We had 125 guests
Sit down or Cocktail Style?
Cocktail style. For us that was best suited to our vibe. James’ friends/family are all from Melbourne, and my friends from home and family still live up in and around Berry, so we wanted everyone to
mingle, rather than be sat on a table with people they already knew.
Planning the Wedding;
Was planning the wedding stressful or did you enjoy the journey?
We both really enjoyed the journey. As we did all of the planning and sourcing of vendors ourself it was really special to see it all come together on the day. I think the only thing that stressed us out was the weather (and flooding!) in the weeks prior to the wedding, but we were lucky to have patches of blue skies and no rain on the day.
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
We were super involved as we did it all ourselves. Emma knew a lot of the vendors already from growing up in Berry (Garnish, Sam Riles photography, Henry Clive, Jamberoo Florist) so she was in control of that aspect of it. For Emma, it was exciting to get to use them and see their beautiful work come together. James took on the role of managing the budget spreadsheet, paying invoices, organising the groomsmen and music. In saying that, all of the decisions were made together so it felt like a very collaborative approach to planning it.
What was the top couple of non-negotiables or important must-have’s at the wedding for you both?
The number one thing we wanted was a big fun party, so music was on the top of our list as we both love a good dance floor. We chose the Baker Boy Band and they had the dance floor going from the second the bridal party entered the school of arts, it was SO fun! Next in the priority was good food/alcohol, and Henry Clive and Garnish Catering delivered such great quality food and alcohol. All
our guests were over the moon.
Tell us about your dress and that dress-finding process?
Emma wore a dress by Made With Love. The dress finding process was really easy, with Emma’s Mum driving down to Melbourne for a weekend to help Emma decide. Thank goodness she came down when she did, as it was a week before NSW and VIC went back into a long lockdown.
What sort of theme, vibe or style did you go for?
Our theme was a bit of a garden party vibe for the ceremony, then natural/rustic vibes for the reception.
On the Day;
How did you both feel wedding morning?
Super excited! No nerves from either of us, just really excited to get the day started.
What was the best part or moment of your day?
We both loved our ‘First Look’ before the ceremony. It meant we could have a special moment before we were in front of everyone and meant by the time we saw each other again at the ceremony we were really relaxed and having fun. We also loved having all of our friends and families from Vic/NSW all
in one place. It was amazing.
Anything you would change about your wedding or anything that didn’t go to plan?
We wouldn’t change a thing!
Are there any rituals, sentiments or traditions you incorporated into the day?
Not that I can think of, if anything we went against a few traditional things – no cake, no bouquet toss, no garter.
After the Wedding;
Describe newlywed life in a couple of words?
Blissful, fun, full of love
Best investment or money well spent on the wedding that you made?
Having you guys do the coordinating on the day was amazing, it meant we didn’t have to rely on any family members to make sure the day went
smoothly. Tamborines! everyone had such a ball with them on the dance floor and for cheering at speech time.
Budget-over, under or what you estimated?
It was over but only by a couple of thousand dollars which we were stoked with considering we thought we’d blow out massively as everyone says you always do!
Coordination/Set Up; The Wedding and Event Creators
Celebrant; Amy Watson
Venue; Berry School of Arts
Florist; DIY florals
Photographer; Sam Riles Photography
Catering; Garnish Catering
Bar Staff; Henry Clive
Entertainment; Baker Boy Band
Makeup; Sally Ann Beauty
Hair; Whyld Hair and Beauty