31 Jan Alex & Innes
Wedding Date: 18th April 2019
Photographer: James Bennett Photography
Venue: Waldara Farm Wedding Venue, Oberon, NSW
What you love and admire most about your wife?
I’m from Canada and when I first met Innes in Australia, she was incredibly exotic to me, she seemed to be from the future almost, I was just smitten.
I am an introvert, Innes is an extrovert, and through/with her I partake in a social life I wouldn’t have by myself. Innes is the antidote to my glass half empty view of life. She doesn’t let me wallow in negativity, nor validates it and gets me out of my comfort zone, but somehow makes me feel relaxed doing it.
Innes is both a goofy girl and a wise woman at the same time and takes care of me when I’m sick, I mean really cares about my health, even when it’s just the man flu. I don’t think I’d ever go to the doctor if it weren’t for her.
Innes made me get a dog, who is my world now. Innes is hot.
How did you meet?
It was the last night of Australian University Games 2006 in Radelaide. My team had already flown home and I was left to parade around town with my basketball gold medal alone. As I talked to a fellow competitor in front of a kebab shop a figure approached, attracted by the smell of sweaty meat (the boys, not the kebabs). She was out looking to steal herself a gold medal. I was sold the second I saw her hair, her smile, and…the kids’ swimming floaties* around her arms.
*Ill-conceived dress up challenge
Love to/happiest when:
Innes has adopted my love for American Football, specifically the New England Patriots. While I suspect that the muscled men in tight pants might help, she seems to genuinely enjoy the game and getting into it with me. She even partakes in my fantasy football league, and won it!
Otherwise we like to take our Mojo dog on adventures, travel, go camping, see bands, play sports, sit in the park with friends, road trips, go to the theatre.
Innes loves trashy reality TV which I pretend to hate but secretly enjoy.
How did you pop the Question?
I proposed to Innes by the Minnewater Lac d’Amour & Lover’s Bridge in Brugge, Belgium.
This was the same spot that her parents had their wedding photos taken 35 years earlier.
Although I didn’t know it at the time, this was also the same spot that Innes’ grandfather wrote a love poem to Innes’ grandmother 73 years earlier. Innes’ brothers recited this poem at the ceremony – one brother in the original Flemish, the other in translated English.
Innes’ initial response to the proposal was, “this isn’t funny, what are you doing?” I had to ask twice and show her the ring before she believed me.
I presented to Innes an engagement ring that I designed in a wooden box that I hand made.
Eventually, she was able to stammer out a ‘yes’.
What did you love most about wedding planning?
Spreadsheets, spreadsheets, spreadsheets. Google Sheets was a Godsend. And re-living all our special moments, like our significant songs, which were an antidote to the stress of planning.
What do you remember the most about your wedding day?
The adrenaline rush of my entrance, standing in front of all my friends and family, Innes’ walk down the isle, the energy at the reception. Electric.
What things stressed you out most?
The logistics of bussing in and out over 100 guests from various hotels and AirBnBs to a remote venue. Ugh.
Best advice to guys that are now planning their wedding?
1/ Don’t fret the small stuff. Focus on the big things, and start early, on things like vows, speech… and entrance 😉 Delegate the rest to suppliers and forget about it. You could spend a whole day arguing over the cake flavour, but no one cares.
2/ Don’t be afraid to tell your best man what you do/don’t want to do on your bucks. You want to have fun, not be made fun of.
3/ Be sure to ask your parents what their expectations are from the day.
Any advice on choosing the right people to work your wedding?
Ask friends for recommendations, check out potential suppliers on Instagram, and meet the key ones (caterer, photographer, celebrant) before choosing.
Do you have a favourite supplier…. If so why?
Andrea, our celebrant, was great, she wrote a beautiful ceremony and made us feel at ease leading up to the big delay. The ladies from Bush Botanical made the most beautiful arrangements and bouquet, and I don’t usually appreciate flowers. James, our photographer, and his sidekick Etienne, took great photos, gave advice on how to pose, and even helped getting me dressed properly! Tim, from Dream Hire Cars, was also incredible, letting me drive his prized DeLorean in and out of the ceremony.
What did you and the boys do on the morning of your wedding?
After breakfast, and a few finishing touches on the setup, a whole lot of waiting! I never really thought about it, but there is about 8 hours between wake-up and a mid-afternoon wedding. I had to remind myself to pace out the pre-drinks!
New Zealand, 4 days, cycled from Wanaka to Queenstown with my 10 closest friends. Incredible.
Japan, 3 weeks, toured around the main cities and some beautiful rural areas. Definitely a unique country.
- At the end of my reception speech I presented Innes with my Uni Games gold medal, the one she’d been trying to steal the night we met 12 years earlier. The guests loved it, I heard rumours that some of the boys even cried.
- I entered the ceremony driving a 1981 DMC DeLorean, with my best man, an OUTATIME license plate on the back, and The Power of Love by Huey Lewis and the News blaring from the stereo. This enabled me to live out two dreams at once, driving the car from my favourite movie (no need to name it) and marrying an incredible woman. The outatime plate was a play on the length of time we spent together before the marriage and the song fit the mood perfectly. Innes and I then drove out of the ceremony in the car to the great happily ever after.
- My father and I made the triangular arbour for the ceremony in the weeks leading up to the wedding. It was good father-son bonding, particularly as my father lives in my native Canada and I don’t get to see him much.
- We both wrote our own vows, which many guests referenced as one of the highlights of the day. I definitely recommend doing this.
Celebrant: Andrea Calodolce
Photographer: James Bennett Photography
Car: Dream Hire Cars
Suits: Germanicos Bespoke Tailors
Shoes: Ted Baker
Entertainment: The White Tree Band
Videographer: Wolf Moon Films
Catering: Redpepper Catering
Stylist: Penny Lane Studio
Hair: Paul Bedggood
Bride’s Rings: Affinity Diamonds
Groom’s Ring: Steven Jacobs (USA)
80s sunglasses: 7/11