Parisienne Gown – Natasha & Albert
Natasha & Albert Manalang
27 September 2019
We got married at Mayfield Garden in Oberon, just over the Blue Mountains. The ceremony took place in the Watergarden Amphitheatre with the reception also on-site in the beautifully natural, rustic Nursery Gallery and Woodfire Garden. We loved this venue from the first moment; it was near the mountains (a shared love of ours), it has incredible food and a very relaxed vibe which was exactly our style. We even stayed on-site in Glamping tents on the night of our wedding.
Denise and Nick from Lovers Club Studio – we honestly couldn’t have asked for any better! Having De and Nick shoot our wedding felt like having a couple of extra friends there on our special day, they fit in so well and we spent most of the afternoon laughing together. What we loved most was their documentary style of photography, no focus on posing but just raw and real moments of our day.
Bo & Luca Parisienne. I didn’t know what I wanted in a dress until I saw the B&L Parisienne. I am a sucker for details, so this dress with its intricate floral beading, scalloped sleeves, and low back was definitely the one for me.
Trying to find the Bridesmaids dresses was one of the hardest parts of the organisation process for me. That’s not at all because my girls were difficult but rather because I was so intent on finding dresses that showed off each of their personalities perfectly. After a lot of online shopping, I was so pleased when I finally saw all of the dresses together as a set. Two of the dresses were Shona Joy, one was Cooper Street and the other one was Hansen & Gretel.
Albert proposed to me at the Lower Yosemite Falls in Yosemite Valley CA near the end of a 6 week trip around the US. We were staying at the beautiful Rush Creek Lodge which is around half an hour away from the Valley and only had 2 full days there. The first day we arrived there was a snowstorm, meaning that the roads were closed and there was no direct way in. Albert was determined to make it there and was looking at every possible option. I didn’t think too much into this as it is in his character to want to experience everything while travelling, even if he wasn’t planning a proposal! So we spent 2 hours driving away from the Valley and another 3 hours traveling back in by bus through a different entrance to get there, leaving us only 30 mins to explore. Turns out that is all the time we needed! We walked through what was a dreamy winter wonderland to end up at the Lower Yosemite waterfall. We were taking a cute photo together and I went over to look at the photo on the camera but instead, it was an adorable photo of our pup Leo with a sign saying “Natasha, will you marry me?” When I turned he was down on one knee. Although the video evidence shows that I said yes right away, Albert is convinced I left him hanging for 5 minutes! We were so lucky to experience this all with my brother and sister in law who captured the whole proposal. I have included some photos to set the scene.
Our goal was to create a natural, laid-back atmosphere to bring our family and friends together. We wanted to spend as much time as possible with our guests and so we both did our speeches during the canapés. We weren’t too specific with the theme of the wedding but were so happy when all of the organisation came together to create a relaxed garden wedding that we had imagined.
By now you know about our love of the snow and my engagement ring follows that theme. It was designed by Albert and made by the incredible jewellers at Diamond World Narellan. It is in the shape of a snowflake which I love because it is so unique to me. We had the pleasure of meeting Natalie from Natalie Marie Jewellery who helped me pick out the Diamond Point ring for my wedding ring. The two rings absolutely look like they were made for each other. Albert doesn’t usually wear jewellery so we were really excited when we found Joseph from The Wooden Circle on Etsy and he agreed to meet with us to show us a few of our favourites rings from his collection. From just one meeting we felt like we knew Joseph (all-round great guy) and we chose the handcrafted dark blue-grey textured tantalum ring, which is a great match for Albert’s lifestyle (he is a trainer and so the texture means that any extra bumps and scratches only give the ring even more character).
I absolutely love a handwritten card or handmade gift and so I was determined to create something special for each and every one of our guests. We wrote personalised notes for all of our friends and family that doubled as their place card for the night.
FLOWERS & BOUQUETS
I had one inspiration image for our florals and the brief was to create arrangements that are organic with a sunset-inspired colour scheme. Bri from Brushwood Floral Design literally said ‘leave it to me’ and brought this all to life perfectly. What was so magical about it was that I honestly had no idea what to expect but as I walked down the aisle and saw the arbour (which looked like it was growing organically out of the earth), I realised that what she created was more beautiful than anything I could have imagined. I continued to be overwhelmed all night with how the florals beautifully finished off our reception space.
Our kind friend Janette from Aunty Net’s Cakes looked after us with a two-tiered chocolate mud and butter cake. It was a semi-naked cake which blended in beautifully with the rustic surroundings. It didn’t last long… once served up for dessert we caught people going back for seconds and thirds!
FOOD & BEVERAGES
One of our ‘must-haves’ was good food on the day and we were not let down by Chef Dan and the team at Mayfield Garden. The food was a communal feast style with wood-fired meat and seasonal roasted vegetables and salads from the Mayfield kitchen garden. We loved how sharing with the people around you meant that everyone was chatting and getting along with others they may have only just met. It also meant that there was something for everyone!
We are off to Canada this year to explore the Canadian Rockies. We are looking forward to snowboarding, hiking, relaxing in the hot springs and of course, eating!
The entire day completely exceeded expectations, so am I allowed saying all of it?! One part that stood out to both of us was the speeches. My maid of honour, both of my parents and all 4 of Albert’s groomsmen said a speech. Everyone was watching, listening, laughing and crying and it was so nice for us to reminisce and view our relationship through someone else’s eyes. It’s safe to say that we were really feeling the love.
ADVICE FOR BRIDES-TO-BE
1. Don’t wear heels (if you don’t want to)! I walked on gravel and danced the night away in my flats without anyone knowing. I was so comfortable!
2. In the lead up to your wedding, everyone will tell you to escape for a moment alone with your new husband, look back at all of your loved ones and really take it all in. I am going to be one of those people. We did this and it is definitely one of my favourite moments from the night.
3. Choose local and like-minded vendors. It was so special to support local businesses within our community and you might even find that you will make friends who you will stay in contact with long after your wedding day.