We work on laptops. Rain, hail, shine, snow, cats and dogs – whatever. We’re more affected by papercuts than by weather when it comes to our daily grind. And right now, we’re counting ourselves bloody lucky.
It’s not until you’re face-to-face with a person directly suffering from the effects of drought can you feel the gravity of what so many families on the east coast of Australia are going through right now. Vikki Blazley is a woman that’s hurting. And it’s the worst kind of pain – the kind that’s without an end in sight. It’s a pain familiar to many – for a long time stoically masked but fortunately in more recent times, it’s a burden being shared with the wider Australian community.
We first made contact with Vikki two years ago, at a time when she thought she’d open up her beautiful horse stud Wirraway Park – just 10 minutes outside of the NSW country town of Bathurst – to host weddings. Then, things took a turn for the worse and plans were shelved, as the laborious job of hand-feeding stock and sourcing hay took up any and all spare hours.
What initially drew us to this farm was the enormous horse arena, entirely covered by an elegant, weatherproof white sail. We hadn’t seen anything like it and our imaginations went into overdrive, with visions of all the incredible celebrations it could shelter. The fact that there are toilet and kitchen facilities just metres away, epic views of bush and rolling hills from the arena and plenty of flat land for parking seemed too serendipitous – it couldn’t have been designed better for weddings.
When we launched our drought initiative a few months ago (any affected farms looking to diversify into weddings are welcome to a free year on WedShed), Vikki reached back out to us with her story. In the past 12 months, she’s had to reduce her stock of hand-bred and reared Guy Fawkes Heritage Horses by more than half, due to the exorbitant cost of hay (quadruple what it was pre-drought). Her herd is now her core original stud, and she fears she may need to let more go.
In an effort to help show what was possible at Wirraway Park, we gathered a group of amazing and downright lovely wedding vendors. These guys quickly and generously agreed to donate their time and talents to giving that horse arena a proper makeover, and we just know you’re going to love the result. We’ll recommend every single one of these businesses until the cows (or should we say, the rains?) come home.
The biggest thanks to the following creatives for bringing this shoot together (go and pay them a visit to see more of their great work):
Videography: Soulmade Stories
Caravan bar: The Airstream Social
Florals: MISS Floral Studio
Hire and styling: The White Place
Arbour: Days Like These Events
CREDITS: Photos Harustudio // Videography Soulmade Stories // Venue Wirraway Park // Caravan bar The Airstream Social // Florals MISS Floral Studio // Hire and styling The White Place // Arbour Days Like These Events
Looking for more gorgeous styled shoots and wedding inspo? Right here.