We recently had the opportunity of providing the wedding invitations and other wedding stationery for a collaborative photo shoot in Warrnambool, designed to showcase some of the fresh local talent in the local wedding industry. On the day I sat down with the collaborators to find out all about them, their jobs, and why they love what they do!
Sarah Jellie – Makeup by Sarah
“I love that every face is different.”
Sarah has been a qualified beauty therapist for seven years, and has just kicked off her own business in 2015. Seeing her at work makes it clear that she is capable of putting anybody at ease and making them feel gorgeous. “I love the opportunity I have to be creative and to have fun,” she tells me. “Every face is different and unique, just as every bride is.” Sarah is available for all occasional makeup. Her specialty? The flawless, natural look that accentuates all the bride’s best features.
Lauren McHutchison – Where Love Blooms
“I like to get everything exactly how the bride wants it, instead of handing her a book of options to choose from.”
Lauren found her beginning as a florist when she did the flowers for her own wedding, and her sister’s wedding. Then, a few years ago, she started working with a friend who is a florist, learning the techniques as she went. In 2015 she branched out, starting ‘Where Love Blooms’.
When I ask Lauren what her favourite thing is about her job, she lights up. “I love chatting with brides, getting to know them and capturing their vision. It’s amazing to translate their dreams into reality. I love to get everything exactly how the bride wants it, unique to her, which is really different from a normal florist where you choose an existing option from a book.”
Her favourite flower? “That’s like asking me to choose a favourite child!” She thinks for a long time. “I love working with sweet pea, for the challenge it presents.”
Tonia Wilcox – GingerKitchen
“Look, I’ve got goose bumps just talking about it.”
Tonia is the function coordinator at GingerKitchen, a new Warrnambool venue. With an extensive history in hospitality, the team at GingerKitchen have been at the Deakin site since August 2014, when the uni funded a full refurbishment of the space.
“We were so excited to grab this opportunity when it came up,” Tonia tells me. She tells me about the different events they have hosted, and what strikes me is how versatile both the staff and the venue are. GingerKitchen can do anything, from corporate functions to wedding ceremonies or receptions. They can seat anywhere from 50 to 350 people comfortably, and have all the benefits of the campus amenities: heaps of parking, and accommodation on-site from $60 per night. They make all their food in house, from scratch, and their team has decades of industry experience in top local restaurants. Besides all that, it’s just a stunning, classy venue, with great views over the river.
Tonia’s enthusiasm for coordinating events is contagious. “I love helping people see their vision come to reality: The whole process of getting to know the bride and groom: understanding what they want from their day and making it happen. I get goose bumps just thinking about that satisfaction at the end of the day when I’ve seen it all come together perfectly.”
LizzyWaterson – Elizabeth Jean Weddings & Events
“I love exceeding people’s expectations.”
Lizzy is a wedding and events planner who spent years around weddings working in hospitality before launching her own business in 2014. She is warm, bubbly, and has the most endearing New Zealand accent despite having lived in Australia for almost a decade. I hear a rumour on the day that she once competed in the National Culinary Fare’s competition for front of house staff. She confirms this, but laughs it off.
“I love being the one in the background, seeing everything go to plan. I love exceeding people’s expectations. I’ve always had a tendency to think ‘what if’, and to plan for all possibilities.” That serves her well in her job, where she basically acts as the bride’s PA before and during the wedding, and makes sure any problems on the day are dealt with before the bride notices.
We chatted about DIY weddings. “I love DIY! It’s awesome!” But, she tells me, many people don’t think about the practicalities of bringing it all together. It’s easy to get stuck in the fun creative details and lose sight of both the big picture and the minutiae. Who is going to co ordinate set-up and pack-up on the day? Who will communicate with your vendors? Who will make sure all your beautiful DIY projects are set up properly? That is where Lizzy steps in: a trustworthy coordinator is a must, even for the hands-on bride.
Chris Allsop – Chris Allsop Photography
“I love to tell the story of a wedding through pictures.”
Chris has been a professional photographer since 2008. He got his start as a kids’ birthday party photographer (yeah, apparently those exist!) before branching out into weddings about five years ago, to challenge himself creatively. Chris is fantastic with people, so it suits him perfectly. He charms his subjects to make them comfortable and bring out their best side. He aims to tell stories with his photography, so that looking through the albums later will bring the whole day rushing back and make people who weren’t there feel like they were.
Chris was instrumental in organising this collaboration – along with Laura Mahony – with the aim of showcasing the “reinvigorated wedding scene in Warrnambool.” With so many young creatives returning to the Southwest after time away learning their craft, there is an exciting influx of talent and experience in the area. All this, combined with the stunning local scenery and coastline, make Warrnambool the perfect wedding location, both for locals and for those planning a destination wedding.
Laura Mahony – Laura Mahony Photography
“I love the amazing vibe of a wedding day.”
Laura has been photographing people for 15 years, and photographing weddings professionally for 2. After encountering film photography in high school she fell in love, and continued with film photography beyond school. In 2013, Laura went along to a film photography workshop that spent time focusing on weddings, and she fell in love all over again. “It should have been obvious because I’d been buying wedding mags for years purely for the pictures!”
Since then, Laura’s passion has only increased and broadened (including a recent move into digital photography). “I love that I’m there to share one of my clients’ most loving and emotional days of their lives. I love seeing their love for one another and I love the overall amazing vibe of a wedding day.”
Laura photographs weddings, but also offers business, product and fashion photography. “I love the creative and physical freedom my work offers me.”
Other collaborators on the day were Cathleen Jia (wedding dresses), and Pitstop Menswear (the groom’s outfit). The stunning models are Jessica G. and Mitch from Brazen Models. And of course, we provided the wedding invitations!