Today we are sharing an intimate Rift Estate Coach House wedding. Featuring a strong European feel centered around celebrating their love, spending time with those that are dearest to them & tradition with a beautiful tea ceremony. Simple & yet classic their design incorporated a white & green palette with white florals that came together to deliver a beautiful timeless look. Joey & Matt filled their wedding day with heartfelt moments that will be cherished for a lifetime!
“Working with Joey & Matt has been such a dream. They are a sweet, kind and loving couple who have deep appreciation of their relationships, especially those who are closest and dearest to them. Even before the pandemic hit, they were already planning on an intimate wedding to celebrate their love at Bowral, which is a beautiful historic town with a lot of European influences in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia. Featuring white and green palette, the couple kept their wedding classic and timeless with white florals for the ceremony arch, bridal bouquet and the reception decor. The couple went above and beyond to make their guests and family members feel comfortable and special by hosting them in the luxurious Coach House at the Rift Estate, a beautiful country heritage accommodation with a picturesque garden. This gorgeous location was also the backdrop for their bridal portrait and heartfelt Chinese tea ceremony.” – Aliki Anadena Photography
How did you two meet? What were your first impressions of one another?
“Matt and I first met at a cafe in Sydney called My Sweet Memory. It was by chance one afternoon that we were both at this cafe and whilst waiting for our drinks to be made that we first exchanged looks. I remember thinking he was kind of cute, but didn’t have the confidence to approach him until he smiled my way (well at least I think he did). From this I gained a little courage and started a little bit of small talk with him as we both waited. As the conversation started to flow, the barista calls out “matcha latte” and we both simultaneously answer for it. Turns out we had both ordered the same drink!”
Tell us a funny story relating to your wedding day or relationship!
“The evening before our wedding date we were meant to have our final meeting with our celebrant to run through last minute things and sign some documents, however as we were about to leave to meet her she called saying that the main road from her home was blocked off and she had to cancel as she would not be able to make it in time. We ended up having a very quick run down of the schedule the morning of the wedding separately with the celebrant. Whilst our final meeting didn’t go to plan, everything on the day fell into place seeming effortlessly.”
Describe a hurdle you had to overcome in your relationship or during your wedding planning.
“Planning a wedding is never an easy task. Add a global pandemic into the mix and it felt like the planning process was impossible. We had supportive vendors who kept lines of communication open throughout the process which made it less stressful in the planning process but a month out from our wedding day we thought we had to change venues. Matt was so supportive and proactive in process that I could not of asked for anymore from him.”
What was your favorite part about planning your wedding?
“Writing our ceremony with our celebrant. We both loved this writing process because while it was difficult to articulate in words how we met, how we feel about each other, hearing each others “what I love about you” and vows on the day was most special and memorable surprise that paid off all the hard work.”
If you had one piece of advice for other couples, what would it be?
“The things you may plan for your wedding, the ideas that you save on your Pinterest board don’t matter when at the end of the day its about two people in love and making the formal commitment to one another in front of the most closest people in your lives.”
Any special ways you incorporated your family or family history into your wedding day?
“Matt and I are of Chinese heritage and to honor our background and its traditions we decided to include a tea ceremony. A tea ceremony in a Chinese culture holds a lot of importance as the couple serves tea to their families to say thank you for all the years of their love and care, and in receiving the tea it is an act of welcoming the couple into the respective family.”
What part of your wedding day was/is most important to you?
“Matt had played piano as a child, but only recently revised his passion for the piano. Leading up to the wedding he was practicing playing “Your Song’ by Elton John to play to me on our wedding day. I was taken by surprise during bridal portraits that Matt decided to serenade me with this song, which as also chosen to be the song played by our string quartet during the signing of our marriage certificate.”
What is your favorite thing about each other?
“Matt: Joey never lets me go hungry. I love her cooking and her nurturing nature.
Joey: I can never hide anything from Matt. He knows me inside and out, back to front and upside down. Some days I say nothing at all, but he will know to come hug me and tell me everything is ok.”
What is the best thing you’ve learned from one another?
“We’ve both learnt to run a home together. From establishing a schedule of running the laundry, to folding a fitted sheet or maintaining a garden we continue to learn things together which builds strength in our relationship.”
“Before covid-19 hit, Joey and Matt were already planning for a really intimate wedding as they wanted to keep their wedding simple, and to focus on the celebration of their love and to spend time with their family. They only had 8 guests comprising of really close family members. They booked the Coach House, a luxurious country accommodation within the Rift Estate at Bowral to get ready at. Their wedding ceremony and night reception took place in another stunning venue in Bowral, the Links House.
Their wedding was held outdoor and was serenaded with a string quartet. It was a beautiful heartfelt ceremony, full of emotions as they made their vows to each other. Joey and Matt met a coffee house when they were queuing up for their orders. It was serendipity and love at first sight that started their love story. After the ceremony, the family had a quick canapé before heading back to the Coach House for their traditional tea ceremony. During the tea ceremony, the couple knelt down in front of their parent/older relative as a sign of respect. In exchange, the parent/older relative gave them blessings for their marriage. Wine and food parcels were offered from the groom’s side to the bride’s side as part of the tradition.
After the tea ceremony, the groom, Matt played the piano in the house; a song that was dear to their hearts as it made the bride teared up. We then headed out for their bridal portraits in the garden of the Rift Estate. Closer to the evening, the bride and groom changed to their reception outfits and headed off to the reception at the Links House.
As their photographer, I called myself lucky to have met such beautiful clients who placed such important priority for their family and celebration of their love, and who have trusted me to capture their most special day.” – Aliki Anadena Photography
Photographer Aliki Anadena Photography / Venue The Coach House / Floral Designer The Red Poppy Florist / Dress Designer Nicole Milano / Cake Designer Cake Arcade / Makeup Artist Mariane Shao / Hair Stylist Mariane Shao / Men\’s Formalwear M.J. Bale / Accessories / Decor The Loop Market / Film Lab Photovision Prints / Ceremony and Reception Venue Links House / String Quartet Clear Strings