VALENTINE'S DAY LOVE STORY | LAURA AND KEIRAN AT PEARL RIVER HOUSES, MARGARET RIVER WEDDING { A CASE STUDY!}

It’s Valentine’s Day!!! And that means we get to celebrate lurrrrrvvveee, because even if this day is a bit of a silly Hallmark holiday, and you should totally enjoy lovin’ every other day of the year, why the hell not wouldn’t you want chocolate and flowers??? Truth be told, I’m buying those things for myself because it’s a great justification, but still. And yes I have a partner but he’s yeah, not really a Val’s Day kinda guy. Fair enough.

Now some of you out there might receive an extra bit of love today, in the form of a marriage proposal. Yep it’s the second most popular date of the year for popping the question! Congratulations to you and happy planning!! (PS Hit me up)

And so we move on to our case study of a beautiful love story between Laura and Keiran at Pearl River Houses overlooking Wooditchup, or the Margaret River near Prevelly. They have kindly shared their planning process with me so hopefully you can get some ideas! I loved their intimate, kid-friendly, relaxing and meaningful wedding in the most picturesque landscape! It was perfection.

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“It was important to us to have a small and intimate wedding and celebrate with our nearest and dearest. Having our three beautiful children with us, we also wanted to create a day that was focused around our family and the love that we share. We aimed to make it a beautiful but relaxed event that was fun for all ages. We had an open invitation for kids, which meant we ended up with a guest list of 18 adults and 17 children! But we honestly wouldn’t have had it any other way. We decided to head away down south, a place where we have holidayed as a family many times before and is dear to our hearts, and make a weekend of it!”

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“We found our venue, Pearl River Houses, when looking at intimate wedding venues in the Margaret River region. The accommodation is lovely and large enough for two families, but what really sold it was THAT view. A stunning deck and lush grassed area, paddocks stretching into the distance, the Margaret River winding down through the property and an EPIC view out to the ocean. In the entire time we stayed there, it never failed to take our breath away. Jenni, the event manager for Pearl River Houses, made the whole process from booking to the wedding day so easy. She was organised, warm, friendly and knowledgeable - a winning formula when it comes to helping coordinate an event like this”

“Our ceremony was a highlight for both of us. We had a stunning set up under the shade of huge trees. It went so perfectly! Our kids did beautifully as our two flower girls and mini best man, and Keiran and I got to say our personalised vows in front of our closest family and friends. I don’t think there were many dry eyes. Our celebrant Anita Revel was just wonderful and made us both feel so at ease and comfortable. We also organised local Wadandi Cultural Custodian, Iszaac Webb, to perform a Welcome to Country and traditional Indigenous smoking ceremony” (this is to ward off bad spirits and wish blessings on the family).

“For reception styling, we were lucky enough to have access to my father in law’s extensive collection of antiques and vintage treasures, so we decided to go for a luxe boho vibe, including mismatched antique crystal vases and glassware, vintage silverware, huge colourful Persian rugs and silver Moroccan style candle holders. On recommendation from Mandy, we hired Susie from Flowers for Mrs Harris to do our floristry design. Susie absolutely NAILED our flower brief of bright, warm jewel tones. When she brought in the bouquets for myself and our two daughters, tears filled my eyes. Not to mention the arbor installation and reception flowers. We had roses in the most incredible colours, a mix of gorgeous natives like proteas and billy buttons, and lush foliage. The flowers made the event exactly what I had envisioned: happy and colourful but in such an elegant and modern way.”

“One of the main priorities for Keiran and myself was obviously the food! We were treated to a huge feast by Tapalicious Catering and every morsel I tasted was divine. There was SO much food and everyone gave it rave reviews. Tanya at Tapalicious started with a huge grazing platter for our guests while we had our portraits with Mandy.”

Dinner was then served at long tables and the guests shared dishes such as Tasmanian salmon, lamb cutlets, potato croquettes, spice crusted squid on top of veggies and salads.

“We hired Italian chef Claudio Tallarico from Claudio Biscotti to create our dessert buffet and we were blown away with what he created. Everything was so authentic, fresh and mouth watering! We asked Claudio to make us a small ‘cutting cake’ as a feature. Well, you can imagine our surprise when he came in with a cake big enough to feed our guests five times over! It was salted caramel and white chocolate, need I say more?”

“We hired furniture through Yallingup Event Hire who were absolutely brilliant, friendly and efficient. We brought down some pallet furniture pieces from Pallets in the Park. The kids also had a large pallet table surrounded by cushions and Tapalicious kept topping it up with kid-friendly bites. To help with the little guests we hired two babysitters through Down South Babysitting. The ladies were lovely and the extra help was so appreciated throughout the reception. The kids had a ball.”

“Hair and make up artist Angela Mee created our wedding day looks and she was such a calm, lovely presence throughout the morning. She was so patient and warm with our two young daughters. Soft boho waves and beautiful fresh flowers in our hair by Flowers for Mrs Harris, with a natural make up look.”

“Our reception was on the lawn at Pearl River under the stars, so for lighting we hired Tim from Wildwood Lighting. Tim went above and beyond with our lights and created a gorgeous wagon wheel effect with the festoon lighting on the lawn, along with some stunning caged pendants as a feature above the dessert table. I had no idea how much work went into setting up lighting for an event and was truly thankful we decided to outsource and hire Tim, rather than DIY as per our original plan!”

“As a special surprise for Keiran, who is a musician himself, I booked the beautiful Katie J White to come and sing for us. As soon as we walked into the reception and heard Katie’s ethereal voice, we both became so emotional. It was the perfect wedding gift for him and a special treat for our guests as well. Everybody couldn’t believe how stunning her voice was. As her final song, she sang ‘At Last’ as our first dance as husband and wife, and yet again we were both in tears. I highly recommend Katie to other couples!”

“I tried to create a couple of little points of difference: the homemade sangria, the drinks trolley with whiskey bar and signature cocktail recipe/ingredients. Keiran’s friend is a brewer at Rocky Ridge Brewing Co so we ordered craft beers through him and had local wines and champagne from Margaret River wineries. We decided to hire a bar manager via Tapalicious and it was another decision we were truly thankful for. Everything ran so smoothly and having everything cleaned up was super helpful.

All of our vendors including Mandy, truly went above and beyond and I can’t fault any of them! Our wedding was so perfectly ‘us’ and everything we wanted - a small celebration with those we love, filled with lots of laughter, warmth, amazing food and fun. Everyone says it goes so fast but it truly does, so soak it all in as much as you can. I woke up the next morning and just wanted to do it all over again!”

Other Vendors:

Dress: Grace Loves Lace

Groom: MJ Bale

Page Boy Suit: Ollie’s Place

Flower Girl Dresses: Angelika’s Boutique on Etsy