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The elegant, relaxed backyard wedding of Danielle and Adam

The overarching theme of Danielle (Dani) and Adam's elegant and relaxed backyard wedding was family. The love was in every part of their day from the tiny details (all family dogs depicted in their cake topper!) to the venue itself (formally a tennis court!).

Dani, a school teacher, and Adam a baker, were married at their home in Lisarow on the beautiful Central Coast of NSW, Australia. They live in a sprawling house with various family members in separate sections. Dani got ready on the top floor and Adam got ready on the ground floor. Their mix'n'match wedding party featured Dani's brother as "Bro of Honour". As with a lot of their wedding day, it was not a matter of deliberately bucking tradition, but what suited Dani and Adam best.

Dani's parents and family spent the previous year preparing the lush bush gardens for their wedding ceremony and reception. The ceremony was held on a gently curved timber bridge with a peaceful pond as backdrop. Their marquee reception was a relaxed affair, pitched where a tennis court previously stood.

The couple designed and styled their wedding themselves, resulting in a truly personal event. Sunny yellow sunflowers matched beautifully with navy dresses for the ladies, with navy suits for the gents. The vintage feel carried through with suspenders, flat caps, pocket watches and bowties.

"My biggest fear was missing parts of the wedding and not having photos to capture what we missed... I am so very pleased with all our photographs and how well Sarah documented the whole afternoon/night!" Dani said after their wedding.

The wedding reception unfolded at it's own pace with no set timings. Everyone went with the flow which resulted in a stress-free time for all.

The food was most definitely a hit with the guests. An antipasto-style grazing table greeted them straight after the ceremony. Later everyone helped themselves to fish and chips served in little cardboard boxes. Salads went for days, which was followed by slow cooked beef brisket. Dani and Adam's wedding cake was an ice cream scoop cake; with a do-it-yourself sundae bar for dessert (fun for children and adults alike!).

"I did not even know Sarah was there during the reception which was amazing! Rather than being in your face and trying to take a million and one portraits I was able to enjoy my reception and have genuine and authentic memories of the night.".

As the sky darkened, the night sparkled with fairy lights, heartfelt speeches and lots of dancing.

Fantastic Wedding Vendors

Photographer: Lucalia Photography

Venue: Private residence

Styling: DIY

Flowers: MT Floral

Marquee/furniture hire: Cateraid

Cake: Wendy's

Entertainment: Adam Johnston

Celebrant: Jacqueline Majer

Wedding Dress: Kel-Leigh Couture

Bridesmaid's Dresses: Kel-Leigh Couture

Suits: Lowes

Men's Shoes: Conner

If you are planning a relaxed garden, wedding I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to look at my Lucalia Photography wedding photography. I am based in the lush Wairarapa region, north of Wellington in New Zealand.

Quick touch up to hair and make up by Waves of Ettalong.

Bro of Honour Joel gets in touch with his feminine side.

The intricate lace and beading on Dani's stunning Kel-Leigh Couture wedding dress.

Mum doing the honours of fitting the wedding dress.

Flower girl Indy-Lee watches on with fascination and dreams of the future.

A last minute calming of the nerves was required!

Proceeding down the stairs with a cathedral length train and veil is no easy feet.

Window light at it's best in the foyer.

Dani's opal engagement and eternity ring sits perfectly with her wedding band from Gary's Leading Edge Jewellers.

Adam fitting his suspenders.

Each groomsman (and page boy Boston!) was given a special bag containing essentials for preparations...

Boston needed a little assistance with his waistcoat.

Rounding up the guys.

Florals by MT Floral.

Fitting the final details.

Each of the gents had a distinctive fob watch.

Dani was walked down the aisle by her dear dad.

The arched timber bridge with pond in the background made for a picture perfect ceremony.

Dani and Adam beamed throughout.

Wedding guests sat on a delightful combination of logs and vintage chairs.

Boston hands over the rings, safely guarded.

It fits! Just...

Adam's wedding ring.

You may now kiss.

Wedding celebrant Jacqueline Majer supervising the signatures.

Guest participation is always welcome.

The horror!

Dani and Adam's beautiful wedding party.

Sealed with a kiss.

The family home in the background, beyond the pond.

The golden hour sunlight highlighted the love in the air.

A quiet moment amongst the fruit trees.

That look...

The glow of a bride on her wedding day.

Bright sunflower bouquet by MT Floral.

How cute are these two, leading the wedding party into the reception?!

Best Man and Best Bro making quite the entrance.


And again!

Grazing table and all catering by Cateraid.

Dani is a salad girl and there were plenty to choose from.

Guests helped themselves to slow cooked beef brisket, food-truck style.

Dani and Adam styled their own reception which flowed together beautifully.

Guests wrote personal messages to the newly-weds...

... and placed them in a special box.

Gifts for everyone were from "the perfect pear".

The marquee was also hired from Cateraid.

Family love.

Exploring around the outbuildings.

It was delightful to see the children interested in photography.

Dani and Adam's reception had no set time line, allowing them to relax and mingle with all their guests.

As the sun set, the lights twinkled on.


Speeches from all were heartfelt.

The ice cream cake from Wendy's was cut...

...and eaten from a special knife which will be kept for generations.

The family dogs joined the party.

Who will catch the bride's bouquet?

Both are very happy. Always the Bro of Honour, never the Groom.

The cheeky smiles continued in to the first dance.

The father daughter dance was especially poignant.

Dani is a dancer so more dancing ensued!

The dance floor was full.

The do-it-yourself sundae bar was especially yummy.

I hope you enjoy this backyard DIY wedding as much as I enjoyed documenting it. Thanks so much to Dani and Adam for inviting me to share it with you!

If you are planning a relaxed garden, wedding I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to look at my Lucalia Photography wedding photography. I am based in the lush Wairarapa region, north of Wellington in New Zealand.

Lots of love, Sarah x

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