Jenna • A One Day Bride
For Jenna and Chris their wedding was all about the celebration. Held in Bali in a pretty epic Villa overlooking the ocean, this wedding was anything but traditional.
WEDDING DATE… 31 May 2016
WHEN AND HOW WE MET
Actually, the first time Chris and I met at a party in Sydney, we both totally forgot we had met at all! It wasn’t until two months later after I had moved to Brisbane and was up in Noosa for the weekend (where Chris is from) that we met for the second time. We started to talk, a lot, until months later two good friends became something a bit more…
OUR WEDDING LOCATION
We started to plan three different weddings in Australia and each time we just weren’t satisfied. When I first suggested Bali to Chris, he strongly disagreed as he felt it would be too ordinary and cheesy. THEN I showed him photos of Villa Latitude and some alternative styling to your typical Bali wedding and he was sold. Who could say no to staying in a pimping villa with 10 of your best friends the week of your wedding??
We always knew we wanted a really FUN, tropical, non-traditional wedding. Relaxed seating, lots of colour, good food and drinks. As you can imagine, it’s pretty easy to achieve all of the above in Bali. I spent a lot of time on Pinterest leading up to the wedding and hired a Bali-based wedding planner/stylist who sourced most of our elements – she was really amazing. I also sourced a few little knick-knacks myself in Bali in the week leading up to the wedding AND my darling husband sourced some fireworks and made some deals with the local council and police to allow them to be let off on the wedding night. It was all a huge surprise, even from me!
Peppa Hart deserves all the credit! I was already a huge fan of her art and styling and we have a few of her prints on our walls at home. When I ventured across her wedding blog I fell in love. She was married at Villa Latitude and her wedding was so original and just looked like so much fun.
THE BEST ADVICE I WAS GIVEN
We weren’t given this advice but we picked up on it attending other weddings in the months leading up to ours. Don’t waste time having a “photoshoot” on your wedding day! We gave our photographer a whopping 30 minute limit for our wedding photos (much to his dismay) and we didn’t leave the venue. The way we saw it, there’s really only once in your life that all of your favourite people come together for you and we wanted our photographer capturing those special moments, not taking a zillion posed photos of us we’ll probably look at once a year for the rest of our lives.
WHAT WAS YOUR NON NEGOTIABLE FOR THE DAY?
Since we had 80 of our best friends and family travelling over to Bali for our special day, we really wanted them to feel special and know how much we appreciated them making the trip for us. We hand wrote thank you cards for each guest and placed them on the seats for the ceremony. Cutting corners or being cheap when it came to food and drink for our guests was absolutely non-negotiable. We served heaps of substantial canapes and delicious cocktails and even had a late night pizza cart to absorb all the booze. There was so much food left over, people were taking ‘doggy bags’ home with them at the end of the night!
Oh my, it was so amazing! My maids planned an action packed day and night a few days before the wedding when all of my girlfriends and the ladies in my family had arrived in Bali. It went a little something like this…. Morning yoga sesh in our beautiful Bali villa, followed by a champagne breakfast. We then headed off to the spa for some pampering and sprucing ahead of our amazing lunch at Metis in Seminyak. My bridesmaids had made up a game called “Cards Against Jen’s Virginity” (a play on one of my favs, “Cards Against Humanity”) which was basically just a very cheeky and hilarious game about who knows me best. Then we all headed to beachfront Seminyak bar, Ku De Ta to watch the sunset while we sipped on delicious cocktails. Later on we all went back to our villa, where all the guys had been hanging out, and it basically turned into a huge pool party until about four in the morning. This night was arguably more fun than the wedding night!
BRIDE’S SUPPLIERS OF CHOICE
CEREMONY: Villa Latitude
While this place was a truly incredible wedding venue, it was a truly awful place to stay for the price you pay, and unfortunately it’s a minimum of three nights when you have your wedding there. The service and standard of the villa was by far the worst we have EVER experienced in all of our travels (and by far the most expensive place we’ve ever stayed) which is a MAJOR call for Bali, a country renowned for customer service. Thankfully the villa owners and managers had nothing to do with the organisation and planning of our wedding day. Despite this, I still wouldn’t feel comfortable recommending this venue.
Since our wedding in Bali wasn’t legal, one of our best friends “married” us which was super fun and special. She knows us and our history very well and she kept the whole thing a surprise. There were lots of laughs and lots of tears. We had an intimate “legal” wedding at our home prior to leaving for Bali which was also special to Chris and I.
Joey Willis was recommended to us by a wedding planner friend in Australia. It is hard to believe there was only one of him on our big day as he did not miss a beat! He captured every single moment of our day and night in such detail. I cannot recommend this guy enough! Seriously awesome and talented guy.
Kyha selected my dress for me! My first appointment was at One Day Bridal and I had fallen madly in love with an entirely different ODB dress online. After I tried it on, Kyha selected the next dress for me and I honestly would have said no, had it been anyone other than the designer of the dress handing it to me to try on. So I guess my advice is, don’t judge a dress by the way it looks on the hanger!
HAIR & MAKE UP
I am veeeerrryyyy fussy when it comes to hair and makeup so opted for a combination of doing it myself with the help of some very talented friends so I could be honest with them and no one would get offended! I couldn’t be happier.
One of my girlfriends is a shoe designer (Cabin & Cove) and she helped me custom design sexy stiletto-style shoes, with a chunkier heel ideal for walking on grass for myself and my bridesmaids. She then used her shoe makers to produce them for us! Very handy! We were all so happy with them!
I had five bridesmaids. Sticking with the casual theme of our wedding and keeping in mind Bali is hot and humid, the white linen wrap dresses that were very on trend at the time fit the criteria perfectly! I ordered them online from General Pants and since they are an adjustable style, they suited all my maids body shapes.
Once again, being Bali I was terrified of the boys being uncomfortable and sweaty (and looking sweaty in the photos) so we opted for casual white linen shirts from a shop in LA called CP shades. I’d heard from friends about the store having a great linen shirt range so I emailed the manager and he had the shirts made for me in a white that matched the maid’s dresses. The pants were from The Iconic and shoes from ASOS.
My wedding planner, Cyra Carolus, arranged all of my florals. I was going for a tropical feel and wanted lots of green leaves with pops of colour. They absolutely NAILED the brief. The arbour was so incredible, especially because the first time I saw it was when I was walking down the aisle. And the bouquets and reception flowers were all just beautiful.
YOUR ADVICE FOR FUTURE BRIDES
- Allocate seating in your ceremony. At so many weddings we’ve been to we find people are really awkward about picking a seat and there’s always a bunch of empty ones left right at the front or in the middle when the bride is walking down the aisle. Our guests loved that we took the pressure away and we wrote personalised thankyou notes on their name cards which really set the tone and emotional for what they were about to be a part of.
- Give the people making speeches a bit of a brief. We told our speechmakers to make a speech to us as a couple and not turn it into a speech you’d hear at our 21st birthday party. We also gave everyone time limits – no one stuck to them – but at least they knew they couldn’t stand up there and ramble all night.
- Get a wedding planner or a friend to at least run your day so you don’t have to worry about anything but having a great time. There is no way I would have had as much fun without my amazing team of planners lead by Cyra from Your Bali Wedding.