I love a good international love story and Rob and Susie’s round the world romance is no exception. Meeting in Australia, getting engaged in Barcelona and then marrying in Wales is definitely one way to get in all the sights.
Susie’s Suzanne Neville frock is beautiful,fits her like a glove and looks positively dreamy amongst the woods at Tros Yr Afon. I love the fact that she chose to incorporate some of Rob’s grandma’s hairpins into her do on her big day – such a beautiful touch.
And a first dance to Let’s Get It On? Genius!
Patricia The Bride: Australian meets Brit love story. Rob and I met in my hometown of Brisbane while Rob was on holidays and we were both instantly smitten. I moved to the UK to start our lives together and we got joyously engaged in Barcelona. We always knew our wedding would be an epic event to celebrate the joining together of our lives and homes and with more than 30 Australians (including my 7 brothers and sisters) flying over for the event we decided to have a whole week of celebrations culminating in one almighty wedding!
Both the wedding ceremony and reception were held at Tros Yr Afon on Anglesey. Rob grew up in the town of Beaumaris nearby and his Grandma is actually a neighbour of the venue and used to attend cocktail parties there in the 1950s so it held a lot of sentimental value. We were very lucky, it was the first and only place we went to see and we loved it from the start. A key feature for us was the extensive on-sight accommodation in the form of beautiful quaint cottages around a courtyard and also the beautiful green spaces and trees and lush rainforest area.
We hired Tros Yr Afon for the entire week and with new people arriving each day the build up was amazing. James the owner and Jen who runs the venue were unbelievably helpful and attentive and so great during the planning process. We can’t speak highly enough of Tros Yr Afon. It is amazing! We knew we wanted a tipi from the start as they are so much more warm and personable than a white marquee and All about Mee tipis were fantastic and very accommodating and had all the extras we could hire to make the tipi really personalised.
We wanted the day to be intimate and relaxed. We wanted the night time to be LOTS of dancing and fun in the tipis until the wee hours. The location allowed perfectly for this and only needed all our favourite people together to make it the best party ever.
My make up was by the brilliant make up artist Rhiannon who I highly recommend. She was amazing in the trial, very patient and helped me decide on my look for the day which I wanted to be natural but glam. She was also so relaxed and lovely on the morning when getting ready which is important with so much going on.
I wanted to feel super glam and special but stay away from anything too formal or typically bridey with my hair. Elaine Marshall did a fabulous job of my hair and my bridesmaids. I went with my hair swept to the side during the day as I wanted to show the back cut out of the dress. I wore fresh flowers and some hairpins worn by Rob’s grandma for her wedding! In the evening my bridesmaids helped me change my hair to an out do with my headpiece on.
I wore a beautiful dress by Suzanne Neville from Carina Baverstock Couture. My best friend and maid of honour Gemma came to the UK to visit us and we went with my girlfriends to try on dresses. I fell in love with it from that very first day and no other dress came close. Her designs are gorgeous, classic and very flattering and I adored the button detail all the way down the back. It was so comfortable which was really important to me as I didn’t want to be restricted on the day. I made sure to get a bustle and hook added to the dress so I could move around freely in the day and dance the night away.
In the end I choose not to go with a veil as it seemed too formal for our garden location but knew I wanted something special to wear! I found a design of a beaded draping headdress I adored and found a designer on Etsy to create something very similar. I loved having a daytime look with the flowers and hairpins and being able to change into a night time look for a bit of extra sparkle! I kept everything else simple and other than my wedding ring only wore a bracelet my new sister-in-law wore at her wedding which had sentimental value. As gifts to the bridesmaids I found them little rose coloured studs again on Etsy that they could all wear on the day.
The Wedding Party
Our bridal party was made up of our nearest and dearest friends and family and we wanted them to feel amazing on the day. We kept with the blue and pink theme and the girls wore dusty rose coloured dresses from For Her & For Him which we decided on together. I knew I wanted a maxi dress and the halter-neck grecian styling was classic and flattering for all.
Rob knew he wanted blue three piece suits without tails. The groomsmen met up in Manchester for a weekend to try on suits. They went into Slaters and they had a great dark blue suit with a fantastic fit and styling. The assistant suggested a victorian collar for the white shirts which lifted the outfit from a smart suit to a wedding outfit. They placed the order there and then and were in the pub an hour later. The boys wore dusty rose ties which were purchased separately to complement the girls dresses.
The flora/trees and beautiful old house with creeping vines was the perfect backdrop so décor wise we just kept things very simple. We wanted a bright colour that popped and looked great with the natural green setting and hessian tipi so we chose a fuchsia pink and navy blue with mottled silver accessories candle holders and vases. This theme ran through the invitations and décor such as paper globes hanging in the tipi and trees and paper bag lanterns that were put out at night all purchased online. One of the best purchases of our wedding was 100m of outdoor fairy lights which was strung up by friends in the foliage which created a sparkly romantic atmosphere.
We managed to borrow an arch and friends covered it in ivy they had collected and beautiful blooms were added on the day. It was a perfect backdrop on the day and all the more sweet as it was put together by our loved ones.
We spent a lot of time gathering inspiration through Pinterest, The Lane and of course Rock My Wedding for different details. I wanted the bouquets to be relaxed and not stiff or formal. The flowers were styled by a family friend Karen (who is a retired florist and also did Rob’s sister’s wedding) who I met with and showed her some ideas of colour and style I liked – again with lots of green foliage and popping pink colours. She took it from there and created our gorgeous bouquets, buttonholes, flower arrangements for the tables. She also wired fresh pink flowers that were placed through the bridesmaids hair and created my lovely fresh flower hairpiece.
Walking down the aisle with my dad was the best, he was so sweet and proud and excited for both of us. I walked down the aisle to Calico Skies by Paul McCartney a song we choose together. Neither of us are religious but wanted the ceremony to have structure and really represent us as a couple and focus on what a loving relationship was. We wanted to declare our love for each other in front of the people who had supported us and were invested in us from the beginning of our crazy journey.
My sister Rosie officiated the ceremony and was absolutely perfect! We worked on the structure and wording with her and pieced it together from inspiration we found online researching Humanist ceremonies. Rob’s sister read an excerpt from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis De Bernieres. My other sister Karen read a poem she had written and then my third sister Chrissi (there are four!) officiated a wine box ceremony. Writing our own vows was the best thing we did and although an extremely emotional task, it was so worth it on the day.
We believe good music is essential to any good party and we had decided we didn’t want live entertainment. For music over the whole day we asked three wonderful friends, whose music taste we really like, to put together playlists. One for the post ceremony drinks, one for the early evening and one for the late night party! This worked really well. The dancing music was electro swing which pleased both the youngsters and oldies.
Our first dance was to Let’s Get It On by Marvin Gaye. We chose this because we didn’t want it to be too serious. We wanted the party to start from there so wanted something everyone would find entertaining, not just us. The night was filled with many hours of dancing and some very excellent dance moves!
Food, Drink & Treats
Food is very important to us and we wanted the food throughout the day to be delicious and fun. For the evening meal we wanted the it to be more like sharing a meal with friends so we had large round tables supplied by the tipi company and we shared our table with our kick ass bridal party. Our caterers were a recommendation from a friend. We wanted to avoid formality and they were great in helping us plan out the menu, listening to how we wanted the day to go. They suggested that canapes are the most memorable part of the day so make them the best! They were delicious and perfect for milling about in the sunshine with drinks.
We had a sangria that was made up the day before which which was a fave with all and really refreshing. We went with a Morrocan style main meal starting with dips and breads and a lamb tagine served on a brass sharing platter with cous cous and accompaniments. It was delicious! There was no served desert but we had a desert table created by Rob’s amazing mumma which had cupcakes decorated with Welsh and Australian flag edible paper butterflies. Our wedding ‘cake’ was tiered round cheeses with grapes, figs and biscuits supplied by Liverpool Cheese Company. We thought when people are drinking they prefer savoury and we were right. There wasn’t a morsel left and we started with 10kg! The late night snacks which are essential were provided by our good friend Sarah. Truly inspirational snack age!
The day after the wedding we invited everyone back for a Hog Roast and more celebrations. The Hog Roast was perfect for the day after and fed the masses while we lounged in the sunshine and finished off the remaining drinks!!
Stationery & Favours
My talented and lovely sister helped me design and create all the invitations and paper details all the way from Australia. She created a gorgeous motif of our names which we used throughout the wedding. Our table plan was a map of the world with all of our favourite places in the world as the tables. Our favours were magic heart glasses which make all points of light a love heart so are amazing with lots of sparkly night time lights.
Advice & Special Moments
Enjoy the whole day! Put some planning into the morning getting ready part as this is one of the most fun parts! I will forever treasure getting ready with my beautiful bridesmaids. My mum prepared us delicious brunch platters and and we had bubbles flowing and tunes playing and much giggling and excitement.
A very lovely moment for me was when my mum presented me with a gift from my Australian grandparents who could not with us. My nana had sent four gifts ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’ each with its own story. It was so special.
Make sure you take some time during the day just the two of you to smooch and soak up the amazingness of what is happening around you. Everything is buzzing so make sure you take the time to pause and take it all in! We snuck away into the woodland area and our photographer got some lovely snaps in there which are some of my faves.
Capturing the day and all of the special moments of it was extremely important to us. Harriet was amazing at getting the whole day, telling a story from beginning to end with lots of natural relaxed shots between people and minimal group photos except for some with family & bridal party which we love! We loved the vintage look of her photos and she captured some moments we will treasure forever.
Photography by Weddings Vintage
- Venue Tros Yr Afon
- Teepee All About Me
- Make-up Artist Rhiannon Pritchard
- Hair Elaine Marshall
- Boutique Carina B Couture
- Dress Suzanne Neville
- Bridesmaids For Her And For Him
- Groomsmen Slaters
- Caterers Outside Food
- Cheese Wedding Cake Liverpool Cheese Company
- Late Night Snacks Taste The Love
- Hog Roast Y Dyn Cig