THE FIRST SIGHT William and I actually knew each other as little kids, we both grew up in Darwin and we were in the same soccer team as eight year-olds, we eventually met again in high school. In our last year of high school we went on one really awkward first date, went our separate ways and started chatting again about a year later! We finally had our first kiss on New Year’s Eve in 2012 and have been together since. THE PROPOSAL We dated for four years long-distance while William studied in Adelaide and I studied in Darwin, the longest we went without seeing each other was five months! William had finally moved back to Darwin and was back for about a month when he proposed. We went out to dinner to celebrate our four year anniversary. After dinner he took me to a beach that we drove along on our first date, he pretended to fold up our picnic blanket when he pulled out a little box and proposed! We were so happy and we drove straight home to tell my family! I was also very pleased he didn’t loose the ring on the beach! William told me that he had gone to my Dad’s office that same day and asked his ‘permission’, nothing like leaving it till the last minute! THE VENUE We were married in St Mary’s Cathedral – a beautiful big church in the city and the same church both our parents were married in some 25 years ago. Darwin has so many beautiful outdoor wedding venues, however there is one very important detail to keep in mind when having an event here; air-conditioning! Our wedding day was warm and humid so we opted to hold our reception in-doors at the Sky City beachside Pavilion, so our guests could still enjoy a beautiful sunset. The food was great most importantly, and our decorators did an amazing job – I think I hired all the fairy lights in Darwin! THE FAVOURITE MOMENT I loved every minute of our day, it especially so much fun getting ready with my sisters and besties. I also loved being at the reception and hearing the speeches our bridal party made for us! Most of our family are really shy, so it was so nice/hilarious having them speak about us in front of all our favourite people. Every couple will tell you how fast the wedding day goes but it is so true. THE DRESS Like a princess! I never actually tried the dress on before I purchased it, I had tried on a number of dresses when I went to RC in Armidale and none of them were ‘the one’. Finally (about four months before my wedding) I saw a image of Berta 16 – 23 on Instagram and went on a mission to get it. Maria from RC made it happen for me and made me feel so at ease making such a big purchase over the phone! The dress finally arrived at my house while I was at work about one month before my wedding! My sisters were so excited to see it, they opened the box without me and sent a video of it! When I finally saw it in person it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen (and still is) and best of all, I only needed a couple of minor alterations for it to fit perfectly! The Berta 16-23 has so many details and layers – the 3D flower details on the skirt were really out of this world. FINDING THE ONE Maria was recommended to me by a family friend, she was so warm, friendly and supportive! It was like having a second mum to help me choose my dress and she genuinely cared about me and my big day! I would highly recommend her and the Armadale shop to any and every bride-to-be! ADVICE FOR OTHER BRIDES Double-check all your details with all your suppliers and decorators and make sure you’re on the same page with everything. Do things that you want to do, don’t just go with tradition! And never underestimate the power of a beautiful dress, even if it is a bit over budget – just go for it!