Bride

Real Wedding: Pum & Nate

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Good food and wine were priorities for Pum and Nate, and their search for a “brick room with high ceilings… and a warm reception atmosphere” led them fortuitously to Sirromet Winery. Sirromet’s gorgeous Barrel Room was transformed into a magical setting for the couple’s intimate celebration. And how’s this for a ‘foodie’ honeymoon – two weeks in Italy where “we saw all the sights, shopped, ate (too much) and tasted some of the best wine in the world”.

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Date: 19 April 2014

The Couple: Nate Shepherd and Pum Weerasinghe (now Shepherd)

No. of Guests: 76

Location: Sirromet Winery, Mount Cotton

Theme: Classic

First Dance Song: Draw Near – Jeremy Riddle

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How did you meet?
We met through friends. Nate was relatively new to Brisbane from Evans Head, NSW, and I had grown up in Brisbane for most of my life. Nate wasn’t sure if I was interested in him and took a chance by simply asking me. From the wedding photos, I guess you can tell it worked out. As cliché as it sounds, our relationship is based on a solid, fun friendship – we took things very slowly because we respected and valued our friendship. Turned out our friends were just waiting for us to eventually get together!

Tell us about the proposal…
I had flowers and a letter with a schedule which I found in my room after going out with friends for breakfast – a whole day of shopping, getting pampered, good food and wine – all with my close girlfriends. I was then driven by a chauffeur to Stamford Plaza where Nate was waiting at a private courtyard which had the view of the city, the Story Bridge and a beautiful hazy purple sky. Nate got down on one knee and of course I said yes! The ring fit perfectly! We stayed as the sun set, drank champagne and ate hors d’oeuvres while we took in the moment for almost two hours. We were then driven to my house where there was a surprise party with our closest friends. We celebrated into the night and I couldn’t wipe the grin from my face!

Why did you choose Sirromet for your wedding?
The reception venue was picked first. We wanted a warm atmosphere at the reception. We looked for a brick room with high ceilings in Brisbane and The Barrel Hall at Sirromet Winery in Mount Cotton, Brisbane was exactly that – amazing. It was perfect and better than what we had imagined it to be. Some guests who had already been a couple of weddings at the same venue mentioned how that was the best they had seen the hall styled and lit (thanks to our amazing florist Nicola from Once Upon a Petal and our styling vendors Chris and Greg from AVideas). The barrels were lit up behind the bridal table which guests would first notice as they walked into the room. We trusted our vendors and that helped the planning process to be stress-free!  We wanted a church in town so that we could stop a few places on the way out to Mount Cotton for photos. The church we married in was a chapel we drove past one day, went in and enquired about it. We spoke to the pastor of Albion Baptist Church who was more than happy to have our ceremony there. It’s such a beautiful building right in the heart of Brisbane.

What did you do for your hens and bucks?
My hens was planned by my amazing bridesmaids. We went to Canvas in Woolloongabba where I was met by a room full of girls. We played games, drank amazing wine and ate some of the best tapas I’ve ever had. The night continued into going out for a dance or two and ended up with my poor feet hurting from all the dancing! My bridesmaids were amazing being so considerate not just with the hands-on things but also for encouraging me and making sure I wasn’t stressed. The groomsmen had a whole day planned for Nate where his mates would join throughout the day. The day included golf, beers, food, inappropriateness and scotch.

DIY Details
We did plan to write a personalised letter to each guest at the reception to express just how thankful we were for them being in our lives. But we ran out of time and settled for writing a card (which doubled as guest’s place cards too!) with a short message of what that guest meant to us. It’s simple but we wanted friends and family to know exactly why we love them and take that with them – so that was the least we could do to connect with everyone on an individual level.

What was your key styling inspiration?
We wanted a classic feel without it being too rigid or traditional. Our reception really sold itself but after our florist and styling vendor worked their magic. It was better than what we had expected!

Where did you splurge and where did you save on your wedding?
We got our church for free which helped us save a big chunk of our budget. We were so lucky to have close friends in the wedding industry who either made our cake for free (my friend Ester made it exactly to our request – chocolate mud cake with peanut butter icing – perfect). We also made our own bomboniere and place cards. Our friends Chris and Greg own the lighting/styling company AVideas who helped us with the ceremony and reception and my good friend Nicola owns the floristry company Once Upon a Petal. Our friend Jess from Evelyn Rose did the bridesmaids’ hair and my hair exactly how we asked for it. All vendors went over and above for us and were reasonably priced. We also had friends drive us around for the day which save us a lot of money.

We decided to splurge on the reception venue as it was exactly what we were looking for. Nate and myself love great food and wine – we wanted our friends and family to experience something we loved so Sirromet was worth spending a bit more on. We also splurged on our honeymoon as we hadn’t really travelled together. And we plan to travel in the future so we thought we’d kick that plan off with our honeymoon.

What gifts did you give your guests?
Our bombonieres were a cheeky nod to a joke Nate and I have going. One Christmas Nate and I took a photo of us which looked like a Chicko Baby and Milko lolly standing side by side. So, with help from our bridal party, we filled little jars with those lollies for our guests to take home.

What was the funniest moment of the day?
The groomsmen’s rendition of Ice Ice Baby – snapback hats and all! Nate and I love daggy songs and dancing and the groomsmen delivered on both accounts. Watching Nate’s brother, who made the speech about how he was an introvert and shy person, owning the floor with his rapping and dance moves was definitely a highlight.

What was the most special memory from the day?
Standing opposite Nate and taking in the moment at the ceremony. People always say that your wedding day flashes by you but from the moment we made eye contact with each other that day, we made a point to stop and take in what the significance it was to declare our love and commitment to each other in front of people who were cheering us on.  Also having time alone with my dad before we left for the wedding was special. I’ve heard of brides having a bit of a panic attack just before they walk down the aisle so I preempted it and gave myself a moment to panic. After five minutes of my dad and myself waiting, dad handed me a glass of Champagne and said ‘your panic attack isn’t happening’. After that we were good to go!

What did you do for your honeymoon?
Nate planned the honeymoon and it was amazing. We flew to Italy where we stayed for two weeks. We went to Milan, Florence, Pisa, Cinque Terre and Rome. We saw all the sights, shopped, ate (too much) and tasted some of the best wine in the world.  We spent the last week in the Greek Islands where we made it a point to have down time and relax. Santorini was the highlight with postcard views anywhere you turned.  We then flew back to Brisbane and capitalised on being guests at our close friends’ (beautiful) wedding and stayed at Byron Bay for just under a week. We then had a week at our home to settle in before work began.

Nate planned the honeymoon almost to the hour mixing being a tourist with having some down time perfectly.

Special thanks to…
Our parents for constantly offering to help and being on call for the unexpected.

Chris and Greg from AVideas who helped us bring our visions to life.

What advice would you give other brides-to-be?
Wedding planning doesn’t have to be a drama – it’s what you make it.  Surround yourself with people who won’t cause you stress. We were really lucky that our bridal party and families were so considerate, always asking if we needed a hand and being really positive with their words.

See Pum and Nate’s dreamy wedding video here.


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Credits
Ceremony: Albion Baptist Church, Albion, Brisbane
Reception: The Barrel Hall – Sirromet Winery
Gown: York Street
Bridesmaid Attire: Lyndal Schloss
Groom's Suit: M.J. Bale
Groomsmen Attire: M.J. Bale
Decorator: Greg and Chris – AVideas
Flowers: Nicola – Once Upon a Petal
Hair: Jess – Evelyn Rose
Makeup: Jade – The Powder Room
Cake: Esther Hoolihan
Caterer: Sirromet Winery – Restaurant Lurleen's
Stationery: Minted
Photographer: Lace and Bowties
Videographer: Emm Films
Honeymoon: Flight Centre - Newfarm, Brisbane
Celebrant: Colin Usher
Engagement Ring: Diamonds International
Bride's Wedding Ring: Diamonds International
Groom's Wedding Ring: Diamonds International
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