At Smashing The Glass, we love nothing more than taking you around the world, to celebrate the very best of Jewish and Jew-ish weddings, and today’s winter-elegance-themed beauty comes to you all the way from apparently not-so-sunny Australia.
Stacey and Michael met at another wedding, and the rest is history – the power of love, guys! They planned their entire Jew-ish winter wedding themselves, with countless DIY projects, and the constant involvement and presence of friends and family.
As a result, everything about the day perfectly represented the couple, from the eclectic bottles they had collected, to their personalized origami fortune tellers; from bridesmaids in Stacey’s favorite shade of blue to the couple running through an AFL banner to start the hora.
If it looks like beautiful bride Stacey’s dress was made just for her, it’s because it was. Her glamorous Erin Clare gown came with personal attention from the designer herself, and a bespoke matching veil – and I think we can all agree that Stacey looked an absolute vision in both.
All of the heartfelt moments and details were captured by photographer, Milton Gan, and Stacey’s writeup below gives a fabulous insight into the divine day in all its glory. Over to Stacey!
How we met
Stacey, the bride: We met at a wedding in Melbourne. An old school friend of mine was marrying Michael’s cousin. Michael’s sister had planned to set him up with another old school friend at the wedding, but when she introduced them the match was not meant to be, and Michael and I ended up chatting for the most of the night.
At the very end of the wedding, I saw Michael striding over to me out of the corner of my eye, and I was overcome with butterflies. He asked for my number and a date once we were both back in Sydney and the rest, as they say, is history.
A cosy ‘winter elegance’ theme
Our theme was ‘winter elegance’ — a roaring fire, a beautiful timber book barn, cosy and oozing with love.
A personal service from Erin Clare
I had been looking for a wedding dress for a while and just didn’t feel like anything I tried on was ‘the one’. I kept expecting to have some kind of holy moment when I would try a dress on that would give me the sign that it was ‘the dress’.
It was made even more special to have Erin herself there so talk everything through. Erin made the dress to fit my measurements, and I ended up going up to her studio in Noosa for a dress fitting, which was a surprise getaway with my mum that I organised for her birthday.
While I was having my dress fitting, Erin showed me a veil that she had made to match my dress design and, not already having found a veil, I knew I had to have it.
It was a wonderful and very special experience to deal directly with my dress designer and really made the whole experience quite unique.
Bridesmaids in blue
The only request I had for my bridesmaids was to wear a blue dress (my favourite color) in whichever shade they wanted. Three bought dresses from Alannah Hill and Review, and the other two wore dresses they already had.
I wanted them to wear something that they felt completely comfortable and beautiful in, and that they would wear again.
A ceremony involving family and friends
We were married under a chuppah borrowed from a friend who was also married under it, we were both walked down the aisle by both parents, I circled Michael seven times as I entered the chuppah, family members said the seven Jewish wedding blessings, we drank wine from my grandparent’s kiddish wine cup (from my grandparent’s own wedding in 1948), Michael smashed the glass to conclude the ceremony, we signed a traditional Ketubah and we danced the hora at the beginning of the wedding function which were sung by a close friend of ours.
To top it off, our close friend Leor became a celebrant especially so he could marry us. It was an incredibly generous and heartfelt gift that we will be forever humbled and grateful for.
Having family and friends involved in the whole day was something that was very important to both of us.
What I would have done differently
I would change nothing about my wedding, except I would do it earlier so my grandmother could have been there.
She was too unwell on the day to come to the wedding and passed away shortly afterwards, and I will always think that I shouldn’t have waited a year. Time really is so very precious.
Our individual, personalised origami paper ‘fortune tellers’, designed, printed and folded by me and Michael, were used as an all-in-one place setting, menu and message to guests.
We painstakingly printed, cut out and folded 150 individual origami pieces, but it was worth it to see the curiosity and delight on our guests’ faces when they opened and read them, and realised we had made them all especially for each one of them.
We sourced vases of various shapes, sizes and colours (blue, crystal and gold) from various variety stores and op shops for the table flowers, and I made the table numbers from old classic looking children’s books tied together in a bundle to create a holder for the table number.
An AFL hora
We ran through our AFL banner (with the song Holy Grail by Hunters and Collectors playing) into the hora (Jewish dancing that the function begins with). The banner read: “TWO TEAMS, ONE LOVE. STACE & HOBBSY”.
Michael and I bonded over our mutual love of footy, and he is a Bombers supporter, while I am a Swans supporter. We were both raised on football, and I had always joked that I would run through an AFL banner on my wedding day. I had it made by a banner maker in Victoria and shipped to Sydney for the big day.
A Polaroid guestbook
We also set up a photo booth table with Polaroid cameras, an album and pens for guests to take photos and leave a note as a memory of the night.
A Backstreet Boys flashmob
Also, the groom secretly organised a flash mob for me with his groomsmen (to I Want It That Way by the Backstreet Boys). A few months before the wedding, the best man was in a scooter accident and broke his ankle. He was adamant that he would still be able to perform the dance on the night. And that he did — walking stick, limp, and all like a total superstar!
I had no idea what Michael had planned (and choreographed!) and was totally shocked and amazed and laughed hysterically with joy and surprise throughout the whole performance.
Advice to couples planning their wedding
Be true to yourselves and chip away at it every week ahead of the wedding. Do your research! There are plenty of DIY projects and fun things you can do together or with friends for the wedding that really give it a personal touch, and will definitely save you a lot of money! If there is something you really want, be as inventive and creative as you can to achieve it.
As stressful as the wedding planning was sometimes, we were really happy in the end that we had planned the whole wedding ourselves. It meant that our wedding was a true representation of who we are as a couple. The whole day was everything we could have ever imagined and more!
Stacey & Michael’s little white book
Bride’s shoes – Panache
Groom’s attire – Peter Jackson Menswear
Bridesmaids – Alannah Hill and Review
Hair – Louka
Makeup – Nicky Lurie
Flowers – Flowers by Emma
Wedding Invitations – Adorn Invitations
On The Day Stationery – B Wedding Invitations
Band – Mike Champion and the Cool