A Kangaroo Valley Bush Retreat, a traditional Vietnamese ceremony inside a cave, gorgeous South African flowers and a western reception, can this East meets West wedding be any cooler? I love a wedding that’s full of traditions, full of family and laughter and when it’s one that’s as heart warming and intimate as this one, it really doesn’t get better than that. With each and every tradition, detail and smile so beautifully captured by Anna Zhu Photography & Film, this wedding is one you won’t want to miss.
Bride Sarah shares, “after seven years together and numerous trips overseas, Andrew still hadn’t been to Vietnam (where my family is from). We decided to take a trip over Christmas 2011. He surprised me there with 2-metre high letters, constructed from bamboo, sitting in a field. They spelt out our initials with a question mark! And we were engaged!”
“My gown was custom made from Vietnam, I had some help from my aunt who lives there.”
“As the wedding was in the bush, our flowers were always going to be natives. The king protea in my bouquet was a nod to Andrew’s South African heritage.”
“Our families all pitched in to help: my uncles set up the altar, my aunt did some of the flowers, other family members provided the gifts for the traditional ceremony. I decorated the area and the tables myself with the help of friends — it’s not so hard, but time is precious on the day itself so enlist help from bridesmaids, groomsmen and friends. We did our own wedding invitations as we’re both graphic designers by trade.”
“We had a shortened version of a traditional Vietnamese ceremony, held in the bush, with two of our good friends acting as MCs. We actually didn’t sign the papers that day, but earlier — we wanted the wedding day to be free from legal proceedings and just be a celebration.”
“My advice for couples planning their wedding would be, try not to stress out about it. Prioritise the most important things. Do it your way. It’s always going to be a great day, no matter what happens, so if it’s rainy or too hot or something else outside your control screws up — don’t sweat it (literally)!
Photography: Anna Zhu Photography & Film / Wedding Dress: Tailor-made from Vietnam (first dresses) & Aidan Mattox (second dress) / Wedding Rings: Raphael Jewellers / Groom’s suits: Givenchy (suit); tailor-made in Vietnam (traditional) / Groom’s shoes: Schmoove by Springcourt / Bridesmaid’s dress: Tailor-made from Vietnam / Ceremony & Reception Venue: Bush Cathedral, Kangaroo Valley Bush Retreat / Reception Decoration: Bride and bridesmaids / Ceremony Catering: Caterina at Katrina Endean / Cake: Adam’s Cakes and Chocolates / Flowers: The Bowral Florist