A WEDDING FEATURE WITH
A WEDDING FEATURE WITH
58 KEEPING IT REAL Josh and Sophie Wrafter share memories of the modern twists on their wedding day. 64 FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE Betty and Oswald Dent have shared a lifetime of love â€“ and adventure. 66 TO HAVE AND TO HOLD Fashionable, must-have products for the loved up. 70 MAGIC MAKER Skye Howe delights in making cakes that are feasts for the eyes as well as the tastebuds. IMAGE COURTESY OF ARTOGRAPHYWEDDINGS.COM.AU
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KEEPING IT REAL
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WORDS CASSY SMALL PHOTOS JENNIFER OLIPHANT
Josh Wrafter September 13, 2013 Montville
A floral wedding gown, the bride giving a speech and wheels of cheese instead of cake. Vibrant splashes of personality and a refreshing break from tradition were what guests were treated to at the wedding of Josh and Sophie Wrafter. THEIRS IS A MODERN love story. Catching each other’s eye on a crowded dance floor, Josh and Sophie’s shared sense of humour saw them bond quickly, and within six months the couple was living together in the Brisbane suburb of Teneriffe. Not long after, Josh’s career in recruitment called him abroad, and sensing this relationship was something special, Sophie travelled with him, making their home in Shanghai where they have now lived for the past three years. Their wedding was the perfect opportunity to not only celebrate their love for one another but to also reunite with family and friends from all corners of the world. Whilst several thousand kilometres may separate them, Sophie and Josh still make time to visit Australia regularly. When Sophie’s parents were in Shanghai for a visit, Josh saw this as the perfect opportunity to pop the question. >
WEDDING DAY ROLL CALL CEREMONY , RECEPTION & CATERING Flaxton Gardens flaxtongardens.com.au PHOTOGRAPHER Jennifer Oliphant jenniferoliphant.com
“Josh picked them up from the airport and asked my dad’s permission on the way to their hotel. They were so excited; Mum and Dad had been waiting for this for a while,” laughs Sophie. After dinner with her parents that night, Sophie and an unusually quiet Josh returned to their apartment to finish off the last of a bottle of champagne they’d opened that afternoon. Josh saw his opportunity. “While I was pouring the champagne he got down on one knee. I was so shocked! He always wanted to propose unexpectedly: 1am on a Thursday is about as unexpected as you can get,” Sophie says. Her experience in the hospitality industry gave Sophie the skills she needed to organise a Sunshine Coast wedding from her home in China. “I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted and how to do it quickly,” she says. “Georgina and the team at Flaxton Gardens were so helpful and made all aspects of the experience seamless and enjoyable.” A trip home for Christmas was all Sophie needed to choose her wedding dress and in a hinterland setting, Sophie’s floral >
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PLAYLISTS CEREMONY Powderfinger – Burn Your Name (acoustic version) SIGNING OF THE REGISTRY Florence & The Machine – You’ve Got the Love Israel Kamakawiwo’ole – Over the Rainbow FIRST DANCE Ben E King – Stand By Me
AnnaBella the wedding chapel
A breathtaking location for your magical day
Nestled in the Sunshine Coast hinterland, AnnaBella the wedding chapel is the idyllic intimate venue for your wedding ceremony.
I knew from the minute I saw the brochure of AnnaBella for the first time, that I was going to get married there. I hadn’t even met Dave then. Amanda
- VISIT ANNABELLA on FACEBOOK -
Just 15 p. 07 5478 9411 minutes m. 0418 814 232 from e. email@example.com Mooloolaba 264 Wilson Road Ilkley Qld. 4554 www.annabellatheweddingchapel.com.au 64
malenybotanicgardens.com.au 233 Maleny Stanley River Road (corner of Mountain View Road, Maleny) Phone: 07 5408 4110 | 0400 091 731 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT THE VENUE Flaxton Gardens is a bespoke, all-in-one wedding venue on the Blackall Range near Montville. With coastline views from Noosa through to Moreton Island, Flaxton Gardens has won a bundle of awards from the wedding industry as a premier venue to exchange nuptials. Owned and operated by husband and wife team, Alan and Georgina Thompson, Flaxton Gardens has sprawling acreage, cottage garden, vineyard and heritage-style buildings. Flaxton Gardens also offers accommodation for bride and groom, their family and friends with Flaxton Grove, a seven bedroom manor home within walking distance of the venue.
Wendy Makin gown seemed the perfect fit. “I like to do things a little differently, and I don’t think white looks that good on me,” Sophie says. “I’ve known since I was a little girl I wanted a big dress. You don’t get many chances to wear a big dress and when I saw this one I thought it was perfect for our outdoor wedding.” ‘Understated with a touch of rustic’ was the theme for the wedding, which was held on a Friday to allow guests extra time to enjoy a weekend away in the Sunshine Coast hinterland. “We spent the morning after the wedding with my parents and then that night Josh’s parents put on a big party for about 50 of us,” Sophie says. Following a honeymoon in Thailand, Josh and Sophie have settled back into life in Shanghai, which will remain home for the foreseeable future. Whilst there, Sophie and Josh are enjoying the opportunity to see as much of Asia as they can. The adventures continue for Sophie and Josh, who are expecting the arrival of their first baby in August. And the love story continues … flaxtongardens.com.au
OPE NI N G H OU R S LUN C H W E D - SU N
D I N N E R W E D - SAT
AVAI L A B L E FO R W E D D I N G S & F UN C T I O N S
Family owned and operated by Anthony and Aletta Lauriston 11 H A R RY ’ S L A NE BUD E R I M ( O F F L I N D SAY ROA D)
P 54 45 6661 |
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FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE
QUICK START TO
wild adventures WORDS AARON WYNNE PHOTO KATE JOHNS
After 70 years of marriage, the traditional anniversary gift is platinum but Betty Dent doesn’t see much point in that. In Betty’s own words, “my fingers are all knobbly now anyway; you probably couldn’t even get a platinum ring on them.” FOR MORE THAN 70 years Betty, 95, and Oswald Dent, 96, have been partners in adventure. From the “wild west-like” daily antics of Papua New Guinea to a confrontation between a boom gate and a Kombi in South Australia, the pair has been inseparable. Oswald was just 10 when he first laid eyes on Betty. His family had moved to Lidcombe, New South Wales where his father, a reverend, was to take over the parish of St Stephen’s. As in many communities at the time, much of the town revolved around the church and the pair knew each other quite well even if a romance didn’t evolve until much later. “When the men were coming back from the war my sister and I went down to meet Os,” Betty says with a smile. “But there was
a line of men all dressed the same, all with the same silly handlebar moustaches and all with bright orange skin from the atropine [a drug commonly used on soldiers in PNG to help ward off malaria].”
Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh in 1972. After such a long time spent in PNG, Os and Betty were keen to explore their own country and spent the next 17 years on and off travelling around Australia in a fittedout Kombi van.
Nervous that she might start snuggling up to the wrong soldier, Betty’s sister was given the task of going in and trying to find Os. With just 10 days up his sleeve before being sent to the “Brisbane Line”, Os knew there was no time to waste. The couple managed a proposal, an acceptance, a wedding and even squeezed in a honeymoon before the 10 days were up.
“We have been pretty much everywhere except for the top western part of Australia,” Betty says. “I don’t know if we had a favourite place so to speak, but we just loved exploring little towns and those sorts of places.” Betty’s eyes light up as she recounts the time they were travelling through South Australia and stayed at a campground that included a proper shower and toilet.
“It was a very busy time,” Betty says. “We always said we weren’t going to get married during the war years, but when he came back and we only had a short amount of time we just did it.” The pair, committed to pulling off the wedding, were prepared to overcome any obstacles that stood in their way from borrowing a wedding dress to taking a twohour train ride to collect a suitcase full of flowers. “Wartime was a difficult time for everyone and not to mention rations were on,” Betty says. “We couldn’t even get enough food to feed everyone so all of Mum’s friends and grandmas and that brought a plate of food for the wedding so we had enough to go around.” By 1958, the couple had had two children when Os, by then no longer a soldier but a surveyor, answered the call for senior surveyors to work in PNG reinstating the country’s borders and land titles. For Os, returning to the country that he had previously only known as a soldier was an honour.
“It was nice to go and help the natives get things back in order,” Os says. The couple recount stories from their family’s 20-year stint in PNG as if it were only yesterday. There was the time a container ship loaded with oil exploded in the harbour, or when Os waded into a swamp that was a known crocodile habitat to rescue an American pilot. “One of these pilots had to make a landing and ended up parachuting into a tree, so some guys rang up Os and asked if he could help,” Betty smiles. “He was up to his chest in water trying to rescue this fella with crocodiles all around but Os said luckily he didn’t see any crocs.” The couple, who always loved community involvement, were very active in the RSL and local bowls club whilst in PNG. Os even went on to represent PNG in bowls at the
“It was very different back then, those sorts of things were just not around like they are now,” she says. Not long after the “luxurious” campground Betty recalls the pairs’ famous boom gate incident. “We were in Adelaide and they didn’t have warning lights or bells or anything and we went to go across and as we did the gate fell down and landed on top of us,” Betty embarrassingly says whilst Os laughs. “We managed to back back just as the train went through and of course all the traffic behind us was beeping and tooting. We felt very small and quickly snuck away and didn’t look back.” In the mid ’90s the couple moved to the Sunshine Coast to be closer to family, including triplet grandchildren and now even great grandchildren. They feel their endless stream of stories are all the better when they are shared.
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TO HAVE AND TO HOLD
French lace, handmade silk chiffon flowers, sheer tulle … can you get more romantic than this? Brisbane-based Grace Loves Lace design delicate ready-to-wear bridal gowns for free-spirited brides, that won’t swallow your entire budget. The ‘Sarah’ is ivory silk heaven with a low back, sheer mesh straps and flower appliqué. graceloveslace.com.au
Photo by Trent Mitchell
E V A H O T AND TO HOLD
Here’s our pick of fashionable, must-have products for that loved up occasion. WORDS CELESTE MITCHELL
BEAUTY TO GO
pretty as a petal Flower girls provide guaranteed oohs and aahs regardless of what they wear, but Pink and Grey’s organic, vintage couture takes it to another level of cuteness. Handmade in Western Australia, these beautiful flower girl dresses come in a range of soft colours, finished off with delicate textures, crochet and ribbon. The only problem is you’ll want to recruit some more children to be in your bridal party! pinkandgrey.com.au
Packing for your honeymoon should be fairly straightforward. Bikini? Tick! Husband? Tick! If you want to jet off with minimal fuss, or you’re looking for a carry-on-only adventure, Uspa’s Jetsetter Pack is your ready-made honeymoon natural beauty kit. Blended from botanical, active ingredients to ensure your glowing-bride look continues, the eco-friendly jute bag is filled with a travel-sized cleanser (choose from nourish milk or awaken foam), Bamboo polish, Damask Rose Hydrosol toner and Renewal exfoliating tonic. Available at Dot & Birdie, 35 Coral Street, Maleny. 5499 9424. dotandbirdie.com.au
TAMING OF THE BEARD Any beard-bearing man worth his salt will be wanting to tend to his face come the wedding day to ensure he’s looking his best. This handy pot of beard wax by Honest Amish is 100 per cent natural and organic, using a centuries-old recipe to tame any unruly hairs and give your facial fro a light conditioning and shine. Made from a blend of organic oils, fruit and nut butters, essential oils, and beeswax with a natural spiced scent, the wax would also make a classy groomsmen gift for any bearded wolf pack. etsy.com/shop/honestamish
The organic and raw trend isn’t just confined to trendy new cafes and your Instagram feed – this season sees beautiful large blooms interspersed with organic products and wrapped up with string as the bouquet of choice. “The eclectic cottage garden look is still very much in,” says Kelly Tilse, owner of Tiffany’s Flowers. “Easter daisies are really lovely and popular as well as David Austin roses and lisianthus.” The team of European-trained florists at Tiffany’s works exclusively in weddings, sourcing fresh garden-picked blooms from throughout the hinterland. The biggest trend of the season, though? Bouquets of baby’s breath, nothing more – just gorgeous bunches of the delicate white flower that was so passé a few years ago. Who woulda thunk it? tiffanysflowers.com.au
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E TO HAV AND TO HOLD
RIDING HIGH There are wedding cars, and then there are wedding Kombis. If you’re looking for a different spin on ‘something blue’ for your big day, Deluxe Kombi Service offers two spectacularly restored Kombis for hire to transport you in vintage surf style. Whether you want the whole red-carpet hog, or a more casual affair, each Kombi hire includes a ‘bridal emergency kit’ on board with hair pins, safety pins, tissues, wipes, towels, scissors and sewing kit; umbrellas; and an esky with ice, napkins and champagne flutes. Now we understand why so many bridal parties are fashionably late. deluxekombiservice.com.au
GORGEOUS GUIDES Whileaway Guides are gorgeous, secret-filled travel guides that cover 28 Australian destinations like Byron Bay, the Yarra Valley and, naturally, the Sunshine Coast. Now they can be customised to give your travelling guests ideas of what to see and do in the region before or after your big day. You can customise the front cover of the guides with your personal wedding details or create a separate postcard invite with accommodation details and any other requirements. Match the colour to your theme, and opt for recycledcard packaging or cute swing tag and string. whileawayguides.com.au
crowning glory Just as a cappuccino isn’t a cappuccino without that final dusting of chocolate powder, this boho bridal headpiece by Percy Handmade could be the missing ingredient from your big day. Handmade using beautiful rhinestones, pearls and crystals, this gold and ivory headpiece is delicate and striking all at once. Available in gold or silver. percyhandmade.com 70
Photo by Haley Renee Photography salt
Sometimes a venue just oozes sophisticated cool and The Lakehouse has it in spades with touches of raw timber, elk horns and rich jewel colours and texture. Think rustic hunting lodge meets The Hamptons, Sunshine Coast-style. Kellie Armstrong from The Lakehouse says brides are looking to the past for their autumn nuptials. “Grandma’s handkerchief held in their hand as they walk down the aisle, a buffet of old-fashioned home-baked pies mixed with a modern wedding cake, and special family mementos will play an important role in some of our upcoming weddings,” she says. thelakehousesunshinecoast.com.au
TAKES THE CAKE WORDS LINDA READ PHOTOS ANASTASIA KARIOFYLLIDIS
Perfection is the word that springs to mind when you see one of Skye Howe’s wedding cakes. THERE ARE OTHER more thorough descriptions which would help flesh out the details of each individual creation – fine ruffled icing layers of whites and pinks, delicate sugary lace, glamorous gold leaf on deep blues, sugar flowers so realistic you want to smell and touch them – but ‘perfection’ is an excellent generalisation. This is ironic, because Skye – creator, owner and operator of Sunny Girl Cakes at Mooloolaba – does not consider herself to be a pedant. In fact, if you believe Skye, she’s not even really creative. “I’m not a perfectionist,” says Skye, laughing. “People would say you need to be for something like this, but I’m not. I think that with creating things like flowers, if you pick up a [real] rose, it’s not perfect. And the next one will be a little bit different – you’ll have little torn leaves, or brown bits, or this one will roll back this way and that one won’t. That works for me.” Whilst Skye may brush off what is obviously an innate creative talent, her cake creations tell a different story, and they are speaking loud and clear. Skye designs, bakes and decorates bespoke wedding cakes for weddings on the Sunshine Coast. It’s hard to believe that Skye has only been creating these beauties for the past two years. Last year, Sunny Girl Cakes grew “outrageously, rapidly and 72
overwhelmingly”, and Skye currently has bookings for most weekends of 2014, and into 2015. Although she is a qualified chef who completed her apprenticeship in the late 1990s at celebrity chef Guy Grossi’s Café Grossi in Melbourne, she had spent most of the years since then working as a doctor’s receptionist in Melbourne and on the Sunshine Coast, where she now lives with her husband and their sons Will, 7, and Luke, 5. Her cake-making venture began when Skye made a birthday cake for her son. Before she knew it, her cakes were in demand. “I think what happened was I thought ‘I really like doing this, and I’m actually pretty good at it’,” she says. “Then I realised people don’t want to make cakes for their kids; I loved it, but not everyone wanted to do it. So I figured there was a market for that.” So Sunny Girl Cakes was born. Skye completed a course with Jackie Thompson at Contemporary Cakes in Brisbane, where she learnt the basics of cake decorating. The rest, however, is self taught. When someone asked her to do a wedding cake, word of mouth quickly ensured that Skye had found her niche. “The wedding industry is a beautiful industry to be in,” she says. “Everybody’s happy about getting married; it’s exciting. I love hearing about what they’re going to do.” She works exclusively from her custom-made separate registered commercial kitchen attached to her home. It is here that she usually meets clients for the first time, when they come to consult with her about their wedding cake design.
“I love people to come here because I love them to see this – my kitchen,” she says. “It makes it real. This is really where I’m going to create your cake. And it’s professional; it’s not just in the corner of my kitchen at home.” Most people, Skye says, have an idea of the type of cake they want, but she loves to create a cake that is each couple’s own design. It will depend on details such as colours of the bride and bridesmaids’ gowns, the table settings, flowers and themes of the wedding. “All those things are really important to me,” she says. “I don’t want to walk into a room with the cake and say ‘oh my God you didn’t tell me you were having blue’! “And they’re handmade. Every one is going to be different.” Skye usually does a detailed hand sketch of the preliminary design of the cake and then keeps working on that sketch until the client is happy. “It’s a very visual thing,” she says. “It’s easier for me to imagine it than it is for other people. The sketching helps people to visualise where things are going to be placed.” Her specialty is fondant finish cakes, the smooth traditional type of icing also known as sugar paste, which Skye describes as having a “subtle sweet flavour”. The cakes themselves are also baked by Skye in Sunny Girl Cakes’ kitchen, as she insists on being able to guarantee the health and safety of all her creations from start to finish. Her preferred style of cake is mud, with white chocolate, chocolate and cherry ripe being the most popular. The recipes are her own, and she unsurprisingly “kind of keeps them secret”. Skye describes the making of the cake from start to finish as usually being a three-day process, with the intricate sugar flowers and other decorations being started up to a week before. She also personally delivers every cake to the wedding venue, because she wants to make sure her creation arrives safely. But mostly, she loves to see the cake take its final place amongst all the other wedding finery. “To go through the whole process and then to put the cake on the table and say ‘it matches!’ is beautiful, and really rewarding,” says Skye. “I suppose that’s why I love it.” sunnygirlcakes.blogspot.com.au FOR EXTRA SALT visit saltmagazine.com.au to see more images of Skye Howe.