Real Elopement – Gemma & Toby, Denmark WA
Sometimes when looking at images of a wedding, we can’t help but be completely captivated by the incredible emotions of the day. Gemma and Toby’s elopement was absolutely this; stunningly sweet, simple beauty in every heartfelt, bliss-filled moment.
After choosing to celebrate their love in their own way, Gemma and Toby curated the details of their day to craft a moment in time that was elegantly understated. From Gemma’s We Are Mancini simple silk sheath gown, elevated with the addition of an exquisitely unique veil from Harriette Gordan, to Toby’s choice of classic cloud grey jacket against chic black accessories. Against the starkly epic fields and forests of Upland Farm, it looks a true treat.
After celebrant extraordinaire Sarah Thompson led these stunning souls through an intimate ceremony, their daughter in their arms, they shared a glass of Prosecco and a slice of wedding cake.
This is simplicity, beauty and connection done just right, captured to look like visual poetry by In the Wilds of Someplace. Scroll on for a soothing dose of positivity, an escape into nature and the sweetest celebration.
High School 2006. We started dating in 2008 at the end of year 12. Not quite high school sweethearts, as Toby had already left school, but near enough.
No distinct moment, but perhaps when we first lived overseas in 2013. After doing long-distance throughout university, it was the first time we were living together. The experience made us even closer.
Toby proposed on holiday in Australia’s mid-North West. Sitting down by the waterfall at Fern Pool in Karijini National Park, he started by saying I was his best friend, he was glad we’d moved back to Australia, and that he was happy we were having a baby together.
We returned home to tell our friends and family we were engaged and having a baby. Their reactions were priceless!
It was all very secretive as we hadn’t told any friends or family about our plans to elope. The elopement was sparked by me purchasing a For Love & Lemons dress online within ten minutes of seeing it on Instagram one morning. This happened mid Covid madness in April 2020. Perhaps the online shopping was going into overdrive! The dress had sheer elements, and I thought it would be best suited to a summer elopement.
Following the dress purchase, I proceeded to enquire with Upland Farm, In the Wilds and Sarah Thompson Celebrant for availability in the new year (2021). Once a date was decided on, and these three suppliers were booked in, I put planning on the back burner.
It was in November that I decided I wanted a more timeless/classic style dress. Cue the new dress search.
Hair and make-up were easy to decide on, as I went with Ash from In the Wilds’ recommendation. I had seen floral arrangements by Riverdale Farm on Instagram, and I knew I wanted my bouquet to be created by Helen. My only request was for lots of white and baby pinks.
With regards to food, I had considered some outside catering and enquired with a company, but they were already booked. We opted to create our own grazing table and finish off with wedding cake.
The Elopement Collective’s photography/Instagram account and the imagery from In the Wilds. It was the perfect aesthetic and vibe!
We got married in a dry grass paddock at Upland Farm, under a giant Karri tree, with rolling hills in the background. I have a huge affection for Karri trees as they’re just so beautiful. Incorporating these into the location was essential.
It was so lovely to have our daughter with us. We took turns in holding her throughout the ceremony as we read our vows. Sarah, our celebrant, even had grapes in her dress pockets to feed Isla when she got too restless.
After deciding my first dress wasn’t right, I searched the internet for every simple slip style white dress/wedding dress. I compared them all and decided We Are Mancini was the best option for me. I felt it fit perfectly off the rack and didn’t need any alterations.
The real hero of my outfit was the Harriette Gordon Ruche Tulle Veil I got from the lovely NOA Bridal Studio in Margaret River. It elevated the outfit with its chapel length and two tiers.
Our daughter Isla saying Dadda and plucking flowers from my bouquet when we were saying our vows.
Meaning of marriage.
A partner for life. Someone you can always be your true self with. Someone who is always there for you and always in your corner.
We actually just had some tunes playing as we were getting ready, and then a couple of records after. But no specific songs. It was just us walking around the paddocks of Upland Farm.
Funny stories or near disasters.
Nothing crazy, but Toby hadn’t even showered or started to get ready when the photographers arrived.
Shelley, the owner of Upland Farm, had kindly taken Isla after our ceremony, so we could have some couple photos. When Holii (videographer) would say for Toby to whisper something special in my ear, he was saying, “where’s Isla?”—making us both genuinely laugh!
Not really. It all seemed fairly straightforward. Shelley and Ash were easy to communicate with and bounce ideas off.
Words of wisdom.
Trust your gut and do what you want. At the end of the day, it’s not about anyone else apart from you two. Celebrate your love however you want.
There is no denying that a silver lining out of this turbulent time is the rise in popularity of elopements and micro-weddings. These intimate, incredible celebrations are taking our breath away on a regular basis, so if you’re considering this as a stress-free option to say your I’Do’s, we’ve got the lowdown for you, here.
GEMMA & TOBY’S VENDORS
Ceremony & reception venue: Upland Farm in Denmark, Western Australia. Thank you to the beautiful Shelley for providing such a stunning venue as well as childminding so we could have some couple photos without Isla.
Celebrant: Sarah Thompson. The uber-cool and easy-going Sarah Thompson made our ceremony thoughtful, evocative and fun!
Photography & videography: In the Wilds of Someplace, Ash & Holii. This dynamic duo were the best decision for our elopement. I couldn’t be happy with our photos and the tear-worthy video they produced. Quickest turn around too!
Florist: Riverdale Farm Albany
Hair: Olive for Hair
Make-up: Abbey Hayes – The Temple Spa
The dress: Malo Gown, We Are Mancini
Shoes: White slingback flats
Rings: Natalie Marie Jewellery – Sapphire with Diamonds
Groomsmen’s suits: yd
Catering: Mini grazing table for two
Bar: Pemberley Prosecco and Glendalough Gin
Cake: Baby got Bake
Honeymoon: Still waiting! Maybe Tasmania for our one year anniversary.