We met 7 years ago in the Hunter Valley at Harringans Irish pub. Robbie was playing in a band at the time and Cath dragged her sister out to see the band (again). After we had finished we ended up just chatting, and that’s where it all started. We were good friends for over 12 months before we actually started being ”a couple”, where Cath upgraded to WAG status. Haha. In all seriousness, we fell in love and our relationship developed in Newcastle, which is why it was so important that we got married here, amongst the people who matter the most to us.
Robbie proposed in Queenstown, New Zealand. We had finished a day of snowboarding where Robbie badly injured his knee. Robbie kept insisting we go out for a nice dinner, despite his injured knee, but ”practical” Cath thought takeaway pizza in the apartment would be a better option. We eventually went out for dinner, (in hindsight, Robbie got very dressed up, but I was only in jeans, with socks and slip-on shoes and still had beanie-hair from the snow!). After dinner, Robbie suggested going for a walk (hobble) by the lake, but I was only interested in getting ice cream, which I thought was the plan… As we walked, Robbie got down on his injured knee (I thought he had hurt himself again!), and he pulled out a beautiful ring and asked me to marry him. It was a complete surprise for me, and for the group of teenagers walking past who started applauding! Even after 7 years I had no idea what he had planned. We then celebrated in a little cosy cafe by an open fire with some Irish people we had just met earlier that day on the mountain.
It was a beautiful ivory gown by Nicolina. It was a strapless, vintage style A-line lacy gown, which we had altered to include my late grandmother’s broach as the main feature of the dress. It was the first I found in the first shop I went to. I tried on other dresses, but kept coming back to this one. I didn’t expect to find my dress so quickly and easily, but I knew it was the one from the moment I tried it on.
It was an intimate ceremony with close friends and family in the same church my parents were married in, 44 years to the day!! Our Celebrant was Deacon Gerard McCarthy from my home town – Maitland. We have always wanted to get married in a church, we really liked the traditional feel of a church wedding. We picked songs to be played through the ceremony that had a lot of meaning to our relationship, and included our family in the ceremony through the readings and candle-lighting ceremony.
It was a Canape and Cocktail style reception at The Newcastle Club in Newcastle. We really wanted to create more of a relaxed and fun “garden party” feel to our reception so we chose the downstairs area of The Newcastle Club which included the open lawn area for our guests to enjoy, as well as an upbeat, acoustic duo for entertaiment.
We really wanted to add our personal touch to the reception by decorating the room ourselves.
Our vision was to have flowers everywhere, to create the “garden party”element. We had lit candles and featured decorations throughout the room to add a romantic touch. Cath’s dad also made the Wishing Well by hand, and our families catered the (large) dessert/sweets table, which added to these personal touches.
We wanted to create a fun and relaxed atmosphere, and this was made possible by the flexibility of an awesome and unique venue, and being surrounded by great friends and family.
There are just too many!! Our top three would have to be:
1. Our first dance. We having no dancing experience and ended up having a dance lesson the week before our wedding, all week leading up to our wedding we practiced in our living room and it never went smoothly until the reception. For the 2 minutes we danced in front of our 110 guests, it honestly felt as though we were the only two people in the room! We loved every moment of it (and it went smoothly).
2. The ceremony – being walked down the aisle with my Father was one of the proudest moments of my life and seeing Robbie at the alter – a moment in time I will never forget. The ring ceremony was a quite funny when we realised that Robbie was trying to put his own wedding ring on my finger.
3. The photoshoot with Thierry Boudan Photography was a blast! We and our wedding party had a great time getting photos around Newcastle, the atmosphere that was created was exactly what we had hoped for – having the time of our lives with our closest family and friends.
It was Canapes and Cocktail style.. There were 7 options including larger boxed canapes or Beef Noodle Salad and Gourmet Fish and Chips. as well as smaller canapes including Arancini Balls, Chicken Satay Skewers, Beef Skewers, Spinach and Feta Triangles, and Spring Rolls.
We also had a large, open sweets.desserts table catered with the help of our family and Anita Jones (macarons).
We chose the luxury drinks package which included wines, champagne and premium beers.
Songs played (walking down the aisle, leaving ceremony, first dance etc)?
Walking down the aisle – ‘Begin’ by Ben Lee
Leaving the Ceremony – ‘Make you Happy’ by Josh Pyke
First Dance – ‘Babylon’ by David Grey
What was your colour theme and colour palette if applicable?
Pastel purple, pink and white.
We had a rough budget and we were able to stick to it, mostly. In the end we decided that it was our wedding and the few thousand we went over our budget was worth it!
What was the total cost of your wedding (excluding honeymoon)?
Cath – Thierry Boudan ‘Glammed Up’ party at his studio, followed by dinner out in Newcastle.
Robbie – Paint ball at Ryhope, followed by Dinner out in Newcastle
Where did/will you go on your Honeymoon & which travel agent did you book your honeymoon through:
Queenstown, New Zealand for more snowboarding!!
We were already quite familiar with Thierry Boudan’s work after he photographed Cath’s sister’s wedding, so the decision was very easy. Photography was one of the really important aspects of our wedding because we get to keep these photos as memories of our day. Thierry and Wayne captured the most precious moments of our wedding. We went with the option of having two photographers from Thierry Boudan photography, which was definitely worthwhile. Our photos captured the story of our wedding day. Thierry and Wayne are so professional, experienced and talanted, we had a few key spots in Newcastle where we wanted photos however on the day we went along with the weather (storm, rain, sunshine, blue sky) and Thierry’s eye and we just love our images!!
Planning process involved talking to a lot of people who had been married and lucky for us we had a few friends that had recently been married who could point us in the right direction. We did use the Ýour Hunter Valley Wedding Planner Magazine (quite a few issues were read!) to guide our planning, but to be honest I have always loved looking through Wedding Magazines. Word of mouth was very useful and my mum was my “unofficial” Wedding Planner, she was just amazing!
Our familes travelled from as far as Chile and New Zealand, but mostly from Sydney. Our friends travelled from Queensland, Melbourne, Sydney and North Coast of NSW. Most guests stayed at the Sebel (Novotel) in Newcastle and Noahs on Newcastle Beach.
Both families and most of our friends are originally from Newcastle/Hunter.
One of our groomsmen lost his trouser pants a few days out from the wedding… A few panicked phone calls and Chad from Gentlemans Outfitters Charlestown sorted it out! We still haven’t found the pants.
The best man locked himself out of his house, and locked his suit inside, as he was about to leave for the ceremony.
The exchanging of rings, where Robbie picked up the wrong ring and tried to put it on my finger, was very funny, but it helped to relax the ceremony – even the Deacon lost it! It is very typical of us though.
Seeing Robbie flying (crowd surfing) to ”I’ve Had The Time Of My Life” at the reception
Even though things didn’t go totally to plan, it was our kind of perfect!
Sacred Heart Cathedral Hamilton
The Newcastle Club, Newcastle
The Newcastle Club, Newcastle
Deacon Gerard McCarthy
Thierry Boudan Photography
We did our own decorating using Belflora florist and Jindaloo Plant Hire
Absolute Vintage Elegance Classic Limousines and Hunter Valley Vee Dubs
Jade Mcintosh Flowers
Made by Family – Sandra Macmillan
Paper & Stuff Cooranbong and Anita Jones Macarons, family made tarts.
Newcastle Bridal House. Gown by Nicolina – Michelle.
Gentlemans Outfitters, Charlestown – Chad Rogers
Derek Barrett Manufacturing Jeweller
Wallace Bishop Charlestown
Crown Plaza Newcastle