Linda & Stephen's fairy tale, tea party wedding

February 23 |

Us in the Rainforest

UsThe Offbeat Bride: Linda, Writer/Doll Maker

Her offbeat partner: Stephen, Web Designer

Location and date of wedding: Minnamurra Rainforest and Gerringong, NSW Australia — 19/11/09

What made our wedding offbeat: Our wedding was offbeat because we really wanted to focus on making the whole experience fun.

This began with hand drawn 'zine' style invitations by our friend Helen and golden Wonka tickets for our guests.

Our ceremony was held deep in a rainforest under a giant fig tree. We chose the location because I have loved it ever since I was a child. (I used to think fairies lived in the tree!)

Later we celebrated with an indoor tea party beneath strings of lanterns with oversized tea cups filled with sweets, giant marshmallow skewers, Daytona, lolly teeth in all of the wine glasses and custom cake toppers (mine even had pink hair like me!). Our reception really did feel like something out of a dream; like walking into the Willy Wonka factory Chocolate Room!Us

My outfit was an eclectic combination — dress from Gallery Serpentine in Sydney, decorated with my own hand cast buttons, amazing hat by Topsy Turvey in the US, bracelets that were both new/handmade with tiny tea cups on them as well as vintage crystal bracelets from my Nan and a choker put together by my sister, and I wore vinyl flocked Melissa shoes.

My handsome groom wore a truly unique Mad Hatteresque suit by Holland Esquire in the UK (complete with animal buttons) and converse shoes with bright red laces.

My amazing sister and Mum did amazingly well with the Brides/Groomsmaid dresses. And overall it was an amazing day thanks to the help of our family and friends.

The Bridal Party

Tell us about your ceremony: We had some fairly non-traditional vows. We replaced a lot of the traditional phrases with things we thought were similar but more fun ie: "For richer or poorer" became "Whether as a couple of dandies or a couple of swells."

What were the most meaningful moments of your wedding?: Seeing the way our parents were both so touched by the day. We had worried that the "offbeatness" of it might worry them but it didn't. We underestimated them. And both sets of parents were extremely proud and moved to tears, as was my groom which is why I love him.

Our biggest challenge: Be aware that working with suppliers (especially overseas ones) can be both incredibly rewarding or amazingly frustrating and heartbreaking. The suppliers I have provided links for are all wonderful to work with and that is why I am recommending them. On the other side of the coin I also had some amazingly terrible experiences with suppliers both locally and overseas.Our Wedding Cake!

  • If they don't return your emails, phone calls or quote within a few days kick them to the curb. It is a reflection that either they are too busy, too lazy or too disorganized.
  • Ask for everything in writing and make sure they have made something like it before. I had a corset and skirt made by someone overseas. Although she is known for corsets she assured me she could make skirts too. She lied. I had to get my entire outfit remade locally three weeks before the wedding. Thankfully the local dressmakers Gallery Serpentine are AMAZING and were totally reliable, professional and fast!
  • When overseas suppliers mess up their time frame it costs you big time! Last minute FedEx is expensive.

Have you been married before and if so, what did you do differently?: I have been married before. It was a very traditional wedding the first time around, but I was very young and I think I have grown so much as a person since then.

This time I really knew what I wanted, and that was to have a very colourful, joyful event that was different to anything either of us had experienced before at a wedding.

What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?: Weddings bring out the extremes in people which can be pretty stressful and upsetting at times. Believe in yourself and your own hopes and dreams. It is ok to tell people that you like something and that is enough. You don't have to justify why, you are a unique human being. Try to let the experience strengthen the relationship you have with your partner and hang onto them through it all. For better or worse!

Care to share a few vendor/shopping links? :

Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!

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  1. Oh my gosh- if that's what she looks like on her wedding, I would absolutely love to see her dolls. So much fun and color!

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  2. Hooray for other Aussie coloured haired off beat brides!! Looks like an awesome day! Congratulations :)

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  3. OMG!!! You looked soooooo a-mazing on your big day Ms. Linda!! The whole look came together beautifully. That corset, those gloves & of course that hat (wink wink) are all swoon worthy!!!

    Love your head Ms.Linda!

    PS – I MUST get my husband one of those suits – Eeeee!

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    • Thanks Kim the hat you made was totally amazing. Lush, creative and fun. I'm going to put it in a display case now so I can enjoy it every day :) And thanks re Stephen's suit. It was so cool. The back was a completely different material again, shame we don't have a pic of the back but very cool.

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      • Amazing wedding Linda!! I love your dress! was wondering where in Gerrigong you had your reception? My fiance and I are thinking of getting married in that region but weren't sure where to have the reception. Thanks

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  4. Oh, this is like candyland in a rainforest. Fab! My fave is the bouquet with real flowers mixed with her own hand made ones.

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  5. OMG…LOVE this wedding! It's so fun and cute and the bride's dress is a dream! I love everything about it – the pink, Victoriana with a dash of Wonderland. OMG love love love <3

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  6. Wow! That looked like a ton of fun. Great details and I love the dress!

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  7. SO gorgeous. I <3 Topsy Turvy. I need an excuse to get them to make me a hat.

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  8. WOW…..love the concept, the dress, the lollie table, the location of the ceremony! Absolutely unique and magical. I almost bought a dress from the same place (live near Melbourne)……they are just fabulous! Congrats to you guys! :-)

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  9. Thanks so much everyone for your lovely comments. It is so nice to share with other OBB minded people. Hopefully it will inspire some more sugar coated rainforest weddings in the future :P

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  10. Congratulations!

    I love Minamurra! It's one of my favourite places in the whole world and that you got married there… WOW!!!

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  11. Gorgeous stuff.
    You don't have a close up of the patterned fabric on the corset do you? I can't tell what it is but I know I love it. :) (If that makes any sense…)

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  12. My parents live in Jamberoo five minute from the rainforrest and I never even thought to have my wedding there! The theme of my wedding is 'mad hatters tea party' and I loved alot of things about your celebration, I hope you dont mind if I steal a few of your ideas, in particular I wanted a green top hat, but thought it would look odd on a bride, you however looked amazing! congratulations

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  13. Linda, I know I'm waaaay late but I happened across your wedding today and I've been sitting here squealing and tearing up like a nutter all morning. It truly is such a treasure trove of loverlee-ness! I've been copping flack for my "childish" & "silly" wedding ideas for weeks now and you are just what I needed to remind me to be true to myself and my delicously wonderful fancy man. Your day looks amazing! Congratulations to you and THANK YOU!

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