Real Wedding – Sharni & Sam, Hesse VIC
Sharni and Sam chose to go low-key on the bling but big on the beauty for their homestead wedding in regional Victoria. Focusing on a fun weekend away with their nearest and dearest, they created a celebration filled with love and laughter.
These two laid-back lovers didn’t sacrifice style for fun though, instead making choices that enhanced rather than overshadowed the natural beauty of their surrounds. An elegant black and white foundation was enriched with contrasts of soft sage green, which blended perfectly with their bushland backdrop.
Tribe catering connoisseurs Truffleduck worked their magic to ensure Sharni and Sam’s guests were in peak condition to carve up the dance floor as the party kicked on well into the early hours, thanks to the cracking tunes of the Baker Boys Band.
Photographer Michael Renga was there to capture all the stunningly understated, fun-filled action.
This is the running argument of our story. WE DON’T KNOW as we are both very stubborn and wouldn’t give in to each other’s story.
As I’m writing this, I’m going with my tragic story of the Geelong Show (it was where the cool kids hung out!). We had a mutual friend that put us on a ride together and then it went from there.
I don’t think we ever had that moment; I think it was something we always thought would happen as high school sweethearts. For Sam, it was a lot earlier than me as we joke about him wanting to propose long before he did.
For weeks we had discussed venturing to walk our dog on a new path we heard was beautiful in Studley Park. I should have known something was up when Sam asked to go for a walk (he’s not your most athletically enthusiastic type), but when he pulled me off the couch in my slops I gave in to the adventure.
With Sam being very weird as we trekked for an hour in one direction, I decided to crack it and turn back to the car (in the rain I might add). As soon as I turned to walk back to the car, there he was on one knee; with the dog, in the mud, in the middle of nowhere! It was just us with no one around, so it was beautiful, but it also was difficult Facetiming everyone for the next hour as we climbed through the trees and mud back to the car.
I always thought I would have a long engagement, but after ten years together, Sam decided to tell everyone on our engagement night that we were getting married in six months. Not sure how we did it, but he gave us a deadline and we made it work!
We really struggled to find the perfect location, but once we found Barunah Plains, we realised it was perfect for us. We went to Officeworks, got a scrapbook and broke every section of the wedding down into what needed to be completed. That all went into a spreadsheet with deadlines, and before we knew it, March 14 was here. Honestly, I loved every part of the process, but everyone else involved hated me along the way I’m sure, but hey I was the bride!
We wanted a blank canvas that we could make our own and allowed our guest to feast and wine as much as they could. That’s why we disregarded a lot of venues.
Lucky for us, our venue was so amazing, so we knew we didn’t want to take away from its natural beauty. We aren’t over the top people and didn’t want our wedding to be that way anyway.
I had a vision in my head, but I wasn’t sure how to execute it, so I made a Pinterest mood board after too many hours spent on the Internet researching, and exchanges back and forth with my poor bridesmaids.
I don’t think I ever believed I was going to find the ‘perfect one’. I know you see it in movies, but I never put on a dress and was certain it was the one (I went through like 50 dresses). I really wanted to wear a pantsuit, so I was going against my natural instinct by wearing a dress.
I was fortunate enough to work with the amazing Lainie, which enabled me to alter and change the design as we went through the process. I am sure she wanted to kill me when we were two weeks out, and she remade my whole dress! Looking back now, I am so glad that I wore that dress and really think it reflected my personality.
From my morning cuddles with the girls in bed to dancing until 4am, it was truly the BEST DAY EVER!
It’s hard to decide, but the moment that you’re hiding inside with your dad watching your guests watch the bridesmaids come down the aisle before you head out is surreal. Everything is built up to this moment and some people go through years of planning (lucky I was only six months). The hit of excitement and nerves is a cocktail of emotions you’ll never get again. Then the moment you make eye contact with your partner and think “Holy Sh*t this is happening”, you know everything is going to be amazing from there.
Meaning of marriage.
We don’t think a piece of paper defines a relationship, but it is a commitment to put up with their annoying habits in return for love and laughter. Day in day out, small or large moments shared with your best friend for a lifetime. The actual day is celebrating this amazing milestone with your nearest and dearest.
Aisle: Here Comes the Sun by The Beatles (sung by one of our oldest family friends, as a surprise for our guests)
Reception entry: Signed, Sealed, Delivered by Stevie Wonder
First dance: Everything by Michael Buble and I Feel Good by James Brown (We didn’t want a formal dance)
Funny stories or near disasters.
Sam is hopeless – the first line of my vows spoke about his lost property habits. And to no one’s surprise he forgot his speech… lucky he’s a real estate agent so he could make something up on the spot.
Also, our friend thought our wedding was the following weekend, so in less than 24hrs he managed to fly down from Brisbane, get a Tux from NSW to Melbourne (as his was in Adelaide) and get the MC to deliver it to him in Geelong.
The weather – it’s the one thing you can’t control so don’t get emotional about it, just plan for the worst and you’ll be fine.
The week of our wedding it said it was going to be raining, so we purchased $500 worth of umbrellas from Kmart. We were fortunate enough that the rain held off for us!
Words of wisdom.
Be upfront at the start – it’s your day, so don’t shy away from the things you want. Before we began the process, we chose elements that were our must-haves for our wedding, which shaped everything:
Style and feel were to reflect our relationship of love, laughter, and casual chic.
We wanted a location where people could stay the night (no curfew).
Both of us needed to know every single person in the room and know something about them (a must to share with the parents, or else they would invite the whole country!)
Having these pillars as ‘must-haves’ made it easy for us to make decisions moving forward.
Also, grooms – you’re going to lose out on decisions so just pick your battles as not everything is worth fighting over.
Pre mid-night snacks are VITAL, and everyone will love you for it. Bring out a sausage roll or toasties at 11:30pm and you’ll never see people more excited!
Microphone/speakers – always test these the day before. We have been to three weddings where these had failed, so this was a massive thing for us.
Loving Sharni’s glowing gals in their sage bridesmaid gowns? To see more of this on-point pigment, we’ve pulled together some of our favourite real weddings moments, showcasing all shades of green. Check it out on the blog!
SHARNI & SAM’S VENDORS:
Ceremony location: Homestead Lawn, Barunah Plains.
Reception venue: Homestead Sheering Shed, Barunah Plains. Look it up, you’ll fall in love like we did with this venue! We searched high and low for the perfect place; one that resonated with our personalities, for a fun weekend away with our nearest and dearest. Barunah ticked every box!
Celebrant: Isabella Henricus. Made our special day. As a close friend, she could portray our characters through our ceremony, which made it so special.
Photography: Michael Renga. TALENTED! We love our photos and couldn’t have asked for anything more. We have so many to choose from, with a wide variety that we just love! It’s not a natural thing to get your photo taken for ten hours, but Michael made it easy.
Videography: Love Solider. TALENTED 2.0! We questioned if we were going to get a video, but we are so glad we did. Looking back now, I would have regretted if we didn’t work with Bas at Love Solider. Along with the photos, every time we view the video, it is the best reminder of emotion, love and laughs from the best day ever!
Florist: Miss Petal Co. Any ridiculous request, Brit will make it happen. We loved our flowers.
Hair: Momu Hair. Alana did my hair for my wedding and hens day, and I loved it both times. She works miracles even with my short hair!
Make-up: Nikizsha Lyons Make Up Artist (THE BEST!)
The dress and veil: Lainie Brookman. The sweetest and most patient person you could dream to work with!
Shoes: Bared Footwear. I’ve been a long-time customer, and they are the most comfortable shoe.
Rings: Circa AD Jewels. Do yourself a favour and have a G&T with Adrian.
Bridesmaid’s dresses: Lainie Brookman
Groomsmen’s suits and bow ties: Oscar Hunt. Great team who looked after the boys.
Catering and bar: Truffleduck. Our wedding could have fed a family for a year! Thanks to Nicola, Deb and Hugh for putting up with our silly requests. Everyone loved the food and were VERY full by the end of the night.
Stationery / Signage: 2ME Print
Entertainment: Baker Boys Band. Elia’s voice will get anyone up and about!
Hire: Memphis Hire
Honeymoon: COVID happened! We were going to Bali then in 24hrs ended up in Perth then after three nights had to come home before the borders closed.
Other: Dad – The man that made it happen! Lighting was amazing!