Backgound Story for the competition:
"I would like to see how our TAPD Scholarship applicants develop a design concept for opposites. I'm always getting couples with different tastes and it's up to me to meld the two together. I thought of the show Green Acres from the 1960s. Here's the premise of the show: Successful New York lawyer Oliver Wendell Douglas gives up the rat race to fulfill his dream: living the life of the traditional American farmer. Fighting the move to rural life is his glamorous, boa-wearing, city-loving wife, Lisa. Our spin on this is that a farm-owner proposes to his glamorous socialite girlfriend. They are complete opposites. He likes the simple rural country life. She likes the lavish uptown city life. They wish to blend their personalities and styles for their wedding. How do you meld these two lifestyles into a tasteful event?"
This is my interpretation of an Australian Style Green Acres.
Style: Aussie Chic
Click here to enlarge image!
As the guests arrive at the Sippy Downs Homestead, a vast and open space with Eucalyptus trees & paddocks. The smell of Lemon Myrtle scent wafts in the air as they make their way through to the ceremony space.
Glimmers of golden wild grasses, rusty red corrugated iron water tanks, and silver & green shimmers off gumnuts in the trees, catch the eye. This is Mother Nature at her best.
The Sippy Downs Homestead is the wedding venue and also the couple’s home - the bush, the outback is where Byron the Groom has staked his claim as a proud land owner and where Madelyn his Bride has come to love the sounds of….. silence.
Byron is waiting at the end of the jute carpet runner in his best RM Williams clobber – navy blazer, caramel tailored pants, crisp white shirt and of course the iconic brown leather RM Williams boots, finished off with an Australian Native buttonhole – where the Gumnut has pride of place.
While he is waiting for his bride to arrive in his favourite car - the FJ Holden, he takes a minute to breathe in his surroundings. The market umbrellas with crystals hanging from them catch his eye, he thinks - calico market umbrellas with crystals now that is city meets country!
He looks above into the clear blue sky to see the chandeliers from their old city home glistening in the sun and hanging from Coolabah Trees. Off in the distance his favourite tree on the property, the Bottle Tree has crystals, ornaments and tea lights hanging from it – which makes him smile.
He sees a glimpse of the trio of white FJ Holden’s making their way down the Homestead Drive, his heart starts beating faster and the anticipation of seeing his Wife to be is overwhelming.
Madelyn is a vision in her Australian designed gown, her blue/green Opal earrings glisten in the sun and the Australian freshwater pearl and Emu feather fascinator is a beautiful finishing touch.
Madelyn looks down at her bouquet full of locally sourced Australian Native fauna and flora - she composes herself, the shades of red, silver, green and white in her bouquet seem to calm and put her at ease.
Its time… a local acoustic duo start as Madelyn makes her way to the ceremony space, its perfect.
After the ceremony the guests make their way over to the drinks station located near the Bottle Tree. Wild Lime Mojitos poured from corrugated drink canisters is a refreshing way start to the festivities.
Wedding guests comment on the selection of Australian cheese and locally harvested grapes from the nearby vineyards. Quality is important for Byron and Madelyn, it’s as important as supporting local farmers and producers. As the old adage goes - fresh is best!
Guests are escorted to the other side of the Homestead, while making their way to the reception area they pass an old Hills Hoist Clothes Line with escort cards pegged onto the line. The guests have in finding their name as they clothes is moved around from guest to guest to locate their name and table allocation.
As the guests turn the last corner of the Homestead pathway lit by recycled glass jars with gum leaf bees wax candles there is a soft gasp of excitement.
Tables are set out under the open sky, there are candles everywhere and the sun is beginning to set – this sunburnt country is stunning!
Gorgeous silk table cloths in the most amazing ochre brown colour with natural hessian table runners contrast each other. The silverware candelabras & crystal glassware is sparkling and reflecting off the sunset & candle light.
Madelyn’s favourite element of the event is the rich brown wood Tiffany chairs with hessian draped over them, it symbolises the style of the event – glamour with an accent of country!
Each individual setting has a miniature handcrafted horse shoe from the local black smith with a place card and miniature hessian bag with a seedling gum tree for each guest to take back to the city.
Tonight will be a night for star gazing under the Australian Southern Cross constellation!
Items on the menu have been especially created for the couple’s guests tonight – the “city slickers” as Byron and Madelyn like to call them now.
Some of the menu items will include Traditional Damper, Shrimp on the Barbie, Wattleseed Beef Tenderloin, Paperbark Smoked Vegetable Parcel & Gumleaf Scented Creme Caramel – and it’s all locally produced.
Byron’s toast is made with a 1980 Penfolds Grange Hermitage - a deep crimson brick red wine and nothing but the best for this newly christened winemaker.
The couple’s first dance is under the starry jewelled night sky and on the red earth they now call home.
Byron and Madelyn could not be happier – they now know this is Their Country.
The love of field and coppice,
Of green and shaded lanes.
Of ordered woods and gardens
Is running in your veins,
Strong love of grey-blue distance
Brown streams and soft dim skies
I know but cannot share it,
My love is otherwise.
I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me!
A stark white ring-barked forest
All tragic to the moon,
The sapphire-misted mountains,
The hot gold hush of noon.
Green tangle of the brushes,
Where lithe lianas coil,
And orchids deck the tree-tops
And ferns the warm dark soil.
Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart, around us,
We see the cattle die -
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady, soaking rain.
Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold -
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.
An opal-hearted country,
A wilful, lavish land -
All you who have not loved her,
You will not understand -
Though earth holds many splendours,
Wherever I may die,
I know to what brown country
My homing thoughts will fly.
Photo Credits (top to bottom left to right)
Row 1 :: Made It Stones of the Yarra Opals Australia West Aussie Wedding Boots Online
Row 2 :: WebShots Brides.com Bridal Guide Caroline Davis Design Flowers By Kate
Row 3 :: ‘i do’ it yourself Memory Lane Limos Brides.com Snippet and Ink Table Jewels
Row 4 :: Wishpot Blogs Wedding Chicks Ryan Phillips Blog Ryan Phillips Blog Australian Wedding Style Faye and Greer
Row 5 :: The Fairy Light Company Dendrobium Linguiforme Feather Orchid Australian Performers Caroline Davis Design Australian Wedding Cake ‘i do’ it yourself
Row 6 :: Stones of the Yarra Valley Paris Parfait Queen B Candles Stones of the Yarra Valley Ayers Rock Resort Bridal Guide Isle of Wines
Row 7 :: Brides.com Faye and Greer Bridal Guide ‘i do’ it yourself Geodetic Ryan Phillips Blog
Row 8 :: Damper Shrimp on the Barbie Wattleseed Beef Tenderloin Paperbark Smoked Vegetable Parcel Wild Lime Mojito Gumleaf Scented Creme Caramel