A love story seventeen years in the making, Sam and Phill finally sealed their love in a sun-drenched springtime ceremony. With their beautiful new baby girl in tow, the high school sweethearts exchanged vows atop the same hill on which Phill proposed the year before on their family farm in Nabiac. With sweeping countryside views and the love of friends and family surrounding them, the couple began the next chapter of their lives as husband and wife.
Wedding date: September 2nd, 2017
Wedding location: Wallamba Downs, Nabiac NSW
Number of guests: 100
Bridal Party: One maid of honour, four bridesmaids, one best man and four groomsmen
Ceremony time: From 3pm - 5:30pm
Reception time: From 5:30pm
Tell us about how you met and about the proposal…
Phill and I met in high school in 2000. After going our separate ways after school, we rekindled our friendship in 2012 at a social gathering.
On April Fools Day in 2016, Phill proposed on our property. He had written a very thoughtful treasure hunt which led to the top of a hill where he had littered the gum trees with fairy lights and tea light candles. He played me a song on the guitar before proposing. It was all very romantic and unexpected.
Where was the location of your wedding ceremony and reception?
We were married on my parent’s property, Wallamba Downs, located in Nabiac on the Mid-North Coast of NSW. Our ceremony was on top of the same hill where Phill proposed. The reception was in a rustic shed which was designed and built for the occasion.
What was the vibe or theme of your wedding?
We went with a rustic, country theme for our wedding. The flowers, bridal party attire and décor were all chosen with this in mind. As it’s a working farm with stunning, picturesque views, we didn’t want to go too formal.
How easy or hard was it to plan your wedding?
We found the planning process really easy, well I should say, I did. Phill’s job was the music which he naturally left to the week of. Everything else I had planned and locked in prior to the day. I enjoyed the process so much that I created a wedding venue business just this year.
Where did the majority of your guests stay?
Majority of our guests stayed locally at Possum Brush, Tuncurry or Forster.
What are you glad you did on your special day?
I’m glad we decided to have our ceremony, reception and photos at the one venue. It meant that we could optimise our time with our family and friends rather than travelling to other locations. I am also glad that we stayed on the farm the night before and the night of, it was so convenient and relaxing having all your creature comforts available. Plus not packing an overnight bag!
Describe the reception space...
You enter the rustic iron shed through two large wooden doors. The floor has two levels, one for tables and chairs, the other the bar and dance floor. There is a large polished dance floor where you can dance the night away. The interior is filled with antique items and other country relics. Tables centres are covered with leaves and tea light candles, the roof glistening with fairy lights. A magical setting for an evening meal and dance.
Did you have an itinerary or planned activities for guests on either side of the wedding?
We had breakfast at the Sicilian in Forster the following morning.
What advice would you give a couple planning a destination wedding in this location?
I would say, book the date well in advance to ensure you get to utilise the vendors that you love. The Mid North Coast is an ideal place to have a wedding, hence vendors are booked out quickly.
What was your favourite part of your wedding day?
One of our favourite parts of the wedding was enjoying drinks and nibbles in the mango tree garden which overlooks a huge lagoon. My brother in law played the piano and sang while guests mingled. It was a spectacular afternoon with clear skies and a slight breeze. We enjoyed this space from 3:30pm – 5:45pm when we moved into the shed.
Photography: Kirk Owers
Ceremony and reception: Wallamaba Downs
Wedding Rings: Occasions Jewellers Forster
Bride’s gown: Hand made
Bride’s shoes: Betts
Bride’s accessories: Family owned
Hair stylist: Tiffany Tulloch - Hair by Tiff (not online)
Makeup artist: Madison Morrell
Groom’s suit and tie: Roger David
Groom’s shoes: RM Williams
Groomsmen’s suits: Roger David
Celebrant: Lorraine Wafer
Entertainment: Blake Entwisle (groom's brother)