They say the world’s a small place, and this was certainly true for Josh and Alex. Crossing paths while working together at the John Flynn Private Hospital pharmacy on the Gold Coast, the two realised they’d actually met before. “We discovered that we went to kindergarten together in Mudgeeraba,” says Alex. Although back then it definitely wasn’t love at first sight – “I would have been too shy, holding on to mum’s leg and most likely crying at the thought of playing with the cheeky, fence climbing escape artist that was Josh,” laughs Alex.
Years later, the stars once again aligned, romantic Josh knew that Alex was the one and set about orchestrating the perfect proposal. By chance, he was one day driving past Spicers Hidden Vale in scenic Grandchester, about an hour west of Brisbane. “We’d seen it previously in a photography package and dreamed of getting married there,” says Alex. “Josh drove past, went inside and met Kirsty North, our wedding planner, who showed him around the property. Discovering that 21 May, 2016 – our seven-year anniversary – was free, Josh made a booking on the spot, confident of a ‘yes’ when he popped the question. We never looked at another venue.” Whisking his girlfriend away for a day of wine and cheese at Mt Tamborine, Josh’s proposal caught Alex completely off-guard. “It’s not totally uncommon for him to organise lovely outings for us so I didn’t think too much of it,” admits Alex. “I have never been more surprised – it was perfect!”
Throwing themselves into planning their dream wedding, Alex and Josh put together a weekend wedding extravaganza. “We did all of our wedding planning together, and the memories of this are almost as significant and special as the wedding weekend itself,” says Alex. Josh mastered the art of spreadsheets and budgeting, while Alex let her creativity shine in a few DIY projects with her husband-to-be. “We made ‘S’more’ packs for each guest, with biscuits, squares of chocolate and marshmallows all tied in a little bow.” In one night, they made 60 of them. Not counting the extras they taste-tested, of course! Arriving the day before the wedding, the couple’s 50 guests were treated to a scrumptious roast lunch, followed by an afternoon of archery and clay shooting, and then a degustation dinner. Now that’s what we call a pre-wedding party.
On the big day the drinks, good times and – for Josh – tears, were flowing (happy tears, we promise!). After exchanging vows, the two wandered the scenic grounds while guests were treated to cocktails, finger food and lawn games. “Our photographers and videographers were there, but it was as though it was just the two of us,” says Alex. “We sat under the big, beautiful tree that we were married under, which overlooks a long, winding road that disappears into the distance. That moment is our favourite memory from the whole day.” Hard to upstage in her stunning Strictly Bridal gown, Alex admittedly had some competition in the form of a flower-crowned donkey named Cinderella. “She certainly was quite the special guest, she is absolutely gorgeous,” says Alex. “We also had a visit from Ryan the goose and a kangaroo hopped past while our photos were being taken!”
Joining their guests in the venue’s historic Laidley Room, Alex and Josh celebrated with a night of touching speeches and unbelievably good food. “We worked with Ash Martin [the head chef] to create a menu that we both loved – and all our guests did too,” says Alex. Think slow-roasted pork belly, seasoned lamb shoulder and house-sourced honey panna cotta. As if that wasn’t enough, the two indulged their guests with one of the most scrumptious wedding cakes we’ve seen. “The top tier was marbled Nutella and the bottom was white chocolate and strawberry.” Wish. We. Were. There.
Moving the party back outside, Alex and Josh danced under the stars to an acoustic cover of Disclosure’s Latch before the bouquet toss. “Our videographer said brides always overestimate how far they can throw, so we had the girls gathered quite close,” recalls Alex. “Of course, I threw it right over their heads!” Wood-fired mini pizzas, a photo booth and plenty of dancing made it a night that guests will never forget. “There were so many laughs, special memories and words that were kind and sincere,” says Alex. “It was quite simply the most amazing experience of our lives.”
Bride’s Little Black Book
Photography: Jess Marks Photography // Ceremony and reception: Spicers Hidden Vale // Wedding dress: Strictly Bridal // Hair: PaperRokk Hair // Makeup: Kimmi K Makeup // Flowers: Just Because Blooms // Cake: Delicious by Sara // Styling: Arctic Fox Furniture Hire and Styling // Photo Booth: The Photo Booth Guys // Videography: Lemon Tree Film House // Honeymoon: Hawaii
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