Trent and Melitta initially bonded over play dough creations and sand pit adventures. They first met at their pre-school, where they both grew up, on Bribie Island, however it was quite a number of years later and a day at the races that saw them come together.
After six blissful years together, Trent proposed, and what followed was a “westival” at Maleny Retreat. “A westival?”, you ask. Indeed, a wedding-meets-festival that has the key elements of a relaxed atmosphere, live music, great food, oodles of space and every friend and every family member that could be gathered to celebrate.
Maleny Retreat is the perfect Sunshine Coast hinterland wedding venue for such an event, and Andrea Thompson was there to capture the day.
“Trent took his groomsmen to the barber on the morning of the wedding for some ‘male-bonding’.”
“My parents, bridesmaids and some very close friends all stayed with me the night before. We made the bridesmaids bouquets and the groomsmens pins together. I wrote all of my bridesmaids and some of my special friends a letter and gave them all their Samantha Wills jewellery as their gifts.”
“Our celebrant was amazing and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room when we exchanged our vows. Walking down the aisle to Led Zeppelin “Thank You” was also pretty special. I still get goosebumps thinking about it.”
“We have a lot of interests that are the same, but we also love completely different things. We respect each other as individuals.”
“We wanted our wedding to be fun-filled and not too formal. A gathering of our closest friends and family to celebrate, drink, eat and dance. It was more of a ‘wedstival’ than a wedding.
Once we had agreed on a marquee wedding and the location, we really wanted to make the most of the beautiful surroundings. If anything it was a whimsical, almost minimalistic style, but with some key features like the beautiful light up letters and the vintage caravan bar. One of my bridesmaids described it as “vintage, bohemian with a touch of glitter”.”
“I am biased, but it truly was a beautiful wedding and the best day of our lives. The day/night was exactly how we wanted it – lots of dancing and laughter.”
Biggest splurge: The key elements like the band and the vintage mobile bar – but they are what made the day/night so great.
Best money-saver: We asked our guests (excluding family and bridal party) to pay for their meal in lieu of a gift. We had tossed and turned about this decision for a while and we also ran it passed a few guests to get their thoughts. They were also very supportive of it. It meant that we could invite more people and didn’t have to cut numbers down.
Bridal gown: Anna Campbell dress purchased at The Babushka Ballerina
Accessories: Bo & Luca head crown, Samantha Wills earrings, Crocodilli bracelet (custom made), I borrowed the veil from a very dear friend
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Bridesmaid dresses: I asked them to pick their own dress. Their only stipulation was that it had to be ‘blue’. I wanted my girls to feel like themselves and be the individuals that they all are, so it didn’t make sense for them to be dressed the same. It worked out perfectly and they all coincidently ended up with an element of lace as well, which was beautiful.
Bridesmaids’ accessories: Samantha Wills jewellery and their own shoes.
Groom’s suit and shoes: Suit from Suits Direct, bow tie from Mrs Bow Tie, and Zu shoes.
Groomsmens’ suits and shoes: Pants and braces were from ASOS, they wore their own shoes and picked out their own socks and bow ties.
Rings: Michael Hill
DIY: Invitations, table settings, decorations, the bridesmaids bouquets, the groom and groomsmens pins, my Aunty made the bunting for the cake table.
Honeymoon: Bali, San Francisco, Las Vegas and LA. We met up with about 30 of our friends in Vegas for a birthday celebration! It was an absolutely awesome honeymoon.
Number of guests: 138
Wedding budget: $32,000
Venue: Maleny Retreat
Bride’s bouquet: Mondo Floral Design
Makeup Artist: Allure Bridal Stylists
Photographer: Andrea Thompson Photography / Caterer: SafeHands Catering Sunshine Coast / Cake: Sweet Art Sugar Decorations / Transport: Highland Connexion / Rentals: Perry’s Hire / Entertainment: Mo Swagger / Celebrant: Melissa Pecci / Wedding Night Accommodation: Maleny Wedding Retreat / Light Up Letters (T & M): AV Ideas