The smile on Lauren’s face was one that left her just glowing as she approached Luke, patiently waiting in the shade of the large umbrellas on the warm sand. The sight of Lauren, on the arm of her dad Percy, was immediate confirmation that she and Luke were meant to be. The smiles simply said it all.
This wedding day was one of those special ones. The ones that leave you wishing you could have your own wedding day over again. Blue skies, close family and friends, laughs… almost too much laughing (the stomach hurting laughing), the beach, golf buggies and… the chicken dance!
Instead of me talking about the day and what I saw through my eyes, I’ve added some photos to go along with the answers to a bunch of questions I asked Lauren about her perfect wedding day.
What’s the story behind the two of you – how and where did you meet?
It was the night after my 18th birthday and I decided I wanted a girls night out. In no shape or form was I looking for the man of my dreams, let’s face it, we were in a seedy night club at The Entrance.
As the night went on I started to get bored and being 18 – a newly founded confidence kicked in and I decided that the girls and I were going to introduce ourselves to the boys in the corner. Something about Luke must have caught my attention as the two boys were sharing a drink so they clearly were not going to buy us a drink.
I really do not know how it started to be honest (maybe too much alcohol) but we decided to have a competition seeing who was the better pole dancer. I noticed that my friend had her eye on Luke but I decided it was my Birthday and I wanted the cute, tall one. Little did I know that he was feeling the exact same as his best mate was the wing man for the night and Luke made him do a dance move which made the two of them swap places.
I know Luke will tell it differently but the night went on and after a few kisses he asked for my number, I answered “Do you think you deserve my number”? He replied by telling me that he would give me his and that I could message him if I felt like it. Not to seem too keen, I left it 3 days and then messaged him and that is where it all started.
Several dates and States later, I fell in love with my very own travelling soldier.
Can you tell me about the proposal?
As Luke had been on a deployment to Afghanistan he had two weeks off in the middle, so we met in the Maldives. We went to the mainland in the day time and had an amazing day exploring the culture of the country. Once we arrived back to our island we had two hours of massages and I had an extra massage afterwards while he was ringing and asking for permission from my Father.
With Dad making Luke promise to convert to a Manly rugby league supporter and always bring cases of beer, I was sold! We then went to a private 5 course seafood dinner on the beach, lit with candles on the sand. After we had eaten, Luke bent down on one knee in the sand and I’ll never forget the words he said.
“Lauren, I have realised that no matter where I am in the world I know that I will always love you, will you marry me?” And of course I said yes.
Where was your wedding ceremony and why there?
We had our wedding at Shelly Beach on the Central Coast. Since Luke proposed in the sand I always knew I wanted to say “I do” there as well.
I grew up at Shelly Beach and to be able to leave from the house I grew up in was magical. It was always a risk with the weather but I just knew it had to be there. Luckily enough we had the most perfect weather.
Where was your wedding reception and why there?
We had our wedding reception at Shelly Beach Golf Club. It has spectacular views of the golf course and beach. They also have fantastic staff that made our day so pleasant and special.
Were you going for a certain theme or style?
Yes, we wanted a beach wedding but also with a hint of purple.
Can you tell me about your wedding dress?
Well, I had always said I wanted to have the biggest dress and to look like a princess but when it came to trying them on, I guess that I had changed my mind. All I wanted was to feel elegant and beautiful and that is how my wedding dress made me feel.
I ended up finding my gown at Sweethearts Bridal Boutique in Sydney and would recommend them to anyone, they were so helpful and lovely to deal with.
My shoes were by Diana Ferrari, the lace and beading were done by my wonderful Mum! My earrings were from Spurling at Erina.
Who did your hair and what led you to the style you chose?
Anna Fotheringham. She is a very busy stylist and I was lucky she is a friend as I wouldn’t have wanted any one else. My husband told me he wanted it up and straight which was not me at all. I guess we met somewhere in the middle.
Who was your makeup artist and what were your instructions when booking – what were you after?
I went to Melli Cosmetics at Terrigal and had one of the senior artists there do my makeup. I don’t really remember any instructions. I just wanted a natural look that lasted. They did a lovely job, Iwas really happy with it.
What about the guys suits?
Spurling at Erina supplied them, although we did have some complications. At least we had suits for the day.
Can you tell me about your flowers?
My flowers were from Buttercups Florist at Killarney Vale. They are so amazing there, lovely service and they did the most incredible job – could not have chosen a better florist.
What led you to choose the wedding cake you did?
Lots of Google and Pinterest searching until I found the one that just felt right. Once I had the design and look I wanted, my good friend Lisa, a local cake designer made it perfectly.
What did you have for your Bomboniere?
We had a massive lolly station and also little brides and grooms bags filled with jelly beans.
Can you describe the photography part of the day?
For me, the beginning of the day felt really nice to have photos alone and with my girls and Mum. It wasn’t stressful, l it was fun to just have a laugh while Andrew took the photos. To be honest, it was really easy to forget that we were having photos taken most of the day as we were just being natural and silly.
Luke and I actually say one of our favourite moments of the day is when we were getting photos on the golf course – it was so much fun!
What lead you to choose Impact Images for your photography?
My sister used Impact Images for her wedding and I also already knew Andrew because he knows my Dad. But the reason I went with Impact Images is because of how amazing Andrew’s work is. I am so happy I did as we couldn’t have had a better photographer.
Do you have a memorable moment from the day?
Another favourite moment of mine is when Luke and I were getting photos with the vintage car. We were giving each other forehead kisses and telling each other how much we loved one another. It was really special and those moments are perfectly captured in the photos.
Can you tell me a little about your honeymoon?
Well, the honeymoon was not as perfect as the wedding day. I became quite ill in Thailand and spent most of the time in bed or at a medical centre. But the days we did spend together while not sick were wonderful.
We went scuba diving and had an adventure day where we tried zip-lining, went to a waterfall and rode on top of elephants. Our hotel was absolutely lovely; we had our own private bungalow with our own pool and view, just stunning!
What is the most important piece of advice you would like to share with brides to be?
When it comes down to it, only you can ruin your day. No matter what happens just deal with it quickly and move on. If it can’t be fixed, it doesn’t matter. At the end of the day you are marrying the man of your dreams so don’t let anything get you down. And let’s face it, not everything will go perfectly smooth, we had no shirts for the groomsmen or groom the day before the wedding and we had missing shoes for the bridal party – for the wedding we just improvised.
Don’t stress, if something goes wrong, you just decide what to do and forget about it. It won’t matter unless you let it.
Also when choosing your bridesmaids, choose people that will make your day more enjoyable and won’t add stress. It just makes the day really special to be surrounded by people that truly love you and want to see you happy.
If you had the chance to redo the whole thing again, would you change anything?
No, I think the day was perfect! I married the love of my life and nothing could have made that any more special.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you for capturing such special moments of our day, we could not have asked for any one better.