Names: Jessica Stewart & Joshua d’Abadie
Wedding date: 6 January 2018
Ceremony & Reception Venue:
Josh's family home in Blanchiseusse on the north coast of Trinidad and Tobago.
How we met and the marriage proposal:
Josh and I met while at university out at local pub in Brisbane which was almost 9 years ago. I met Josh in the ATM line at this pub and asked him if he was Mexican... Turned out he was actually from the Caribbean, which later on was the place where he proposed to me & where we got married.
2 years ago, we were in the Caribbean over summer at his parent’s holiday home on the north coast of Trinidad, and in the morning a few days before Christmas we went down to their private little cove with 2 coconuts Josh had picked for me that morning. After our swim, he handed me one of the coconuts to eat, but when I opened it there was a ring box in there. He got down on one knee under this little hut next to the water where we were sitting and proposed to me. It was in the exact same spot 2 years after he proposed that we had our wedding there too. It’s a place that’s really special to us, and home for him.
About our wedding day:
Our wedding day was so amazing. Everyone always told me it would be one of the most magical days of your life and I didn’t quite realise what they meant until we did it. We had about 160 guests, 100 of which were family and friends from Trinidad & Tobago, and the rest were foreigners; our friends and family from Australia and all the world. It was incredible and surreal to have all of our loved ones in Trinidad & Tobago to experience that magical country with us, but also for them to see where Josh was from, to see a place so special to us, and most importantly, to share a very special day with us. We were so honoured that so many of our friends and family flew such great distances to be with us for that holiday.
I think the most important thing for both of us throughout the wedding and the lead up to it was to stay focussed on what was important – which ultimately was the two of us, and to not let stresses get in the way of a day that will forever be so special to us. The most important thing to us was that we were together, and that we were celebrating our wedding day with so many of our loved ones.
Our wedding style:
The style of our wedding was really just to keep it simple and let the venue shine. We didn’t have a sit-down dinner, we had food stations with local cuisine in small tents dotted over the backyard so that people could just wander around and eat when they wanted to and what they wanted to. We put most of the emphasis on getting people to the dance floor by putting the bar on the other side of it so our guests were literally dancing from the moment we walked back down the aisle.
The colour palette was really green and natural, lots of local foliage, and kept the rest really simple with white tents, white tablecloths on the bar tables, fairy & festoon lighting everywhere and old rum barrels for the base of some of the food tables. We had some beautiful arches made from big tropical leaves which were beautiful, but the rest was kept really natural.
Although Josh and I didn’t do much DIY-ing, his parents had done so much in the lead up to the wedding to get the house and property ready for the big day, so they pretty much DIY’d the venue! And then Josh’s cousin who runs an incredible event company in the Caribbean set up the entire event for us as a wedding gift.
Finding my wedding gown:
I always knew I didn’t want to wear a white dress, and so I’d been looking for a while but just hadn’t found anything I loved or that was within budget. About 8 months before our wedding I still hadn’t found anything and one of my girlfriends sent me a photo on Instagram of this Suzanne Harward Havana gown and the second I saw it, I knew that I had to have it. I hadn’t tried anything on yet at that stage, and that week I booked a flight to Melbourne, tried the dress on, ordered it, and 6 months later picked it up.
First dance song:
Our first dance song was Harvest Moon by Neil Young. I don’t know why we chose it, we just loved it, it’s one of our favourite songs now even more than ever.
Advice for future couples:
The best advice I got was from our wedding planner who told us to not to do everything ourselves and to just enjoy the day. I had grand plans to DIY everything, and in the end, I let it all go and let the professionals do it and it was so worth it because my stress levels in the days leading up to it were high even without the long list of things I had wanted to do myself.
So, try not to stress, don’t worry about trying to make everything perfect or doing too much yourself. Just focus on what is important – spending the day together and savouring every moment because it’s all over in a flash and you won’t remember the little things that went wrong, you will just remember each other, the songs that played and sharing the special moment with your family and friends.
Photographer; Samantha Jackson // Groom’s attire; P Johnson Custom Tailored Suit // Brides shoes; Tony Bianco // Bride’s accessories; Christie Nicolaides Earrings // Florist; The Flower Bar by Amanda Drew // Cake; Josh's cousin and uncle made the cakes // Planner / Stylist; Laura Murray from Bouge Events // Stationary; Hand-drawn by the bride // Entertainment; A local Trinidadian band called The Cartars // Hair & Makeup; The Bride did her own makeup. Hair by Jessica Pouchet