The most important thing for this duo? Creating a wedding vibe that felt totally like them. That meant bringing ensuring that the styling reflected their personal tastes and partnering with vendors that they were able to work with closely and completely entrust to create something personal.
The result is this gorgeous day at Ballarat country wedding venue Willow and Stone Estate, captured by Wedshed faves Bianca Virtue, with video by Moon and Back Co. Planned, concepted and styled by Tori Allen Events, the whole day is a lesson in chic – take a look for yourself.
Your history: Angus: We met when we were both 17, at a Harry Potter themed party. Allie came dressed as the Hogwarts Express and captured my attention straight away. I thought, I have to know that girl!
Allie: A mutual friend introduced us at the party, and the first thing I remember thinking was just how charismatic Angus was. It sounds corny, but the rest of the party completely disappeared and it was like we were the only two people there. From then on, we were fairly inseparable – 10 years later it’s still the case!
The proposal: Angus proposed in the front room of our apartment on a beautiful and sunny November afternoon. He had lit candles all around the room knowing how much I love them, and got down on one knee. We had discussed our engagement for a few months prior to the day so it definitely wasn’t a surprise, however once the moment finally arrived, it was the most special day. Immediately afterwards all I could think about was telling my parents the good news, so I was running to put my shoes on whilst Angus was still kneeling!
The venue: We got married at Willow and Stone in Ballarat – it was actually the only venue we looked at. We knew we wanted something out of Melbourne and completely outside (risky for somebody as anxious as me!). Willow and Stone was beautifully private, and we were already planning out how the ceremony would unfold in our first viewing appointment. The moment we met own Leish (the owner) really sealed the deal – she became like family over the planning process and her kindness and unwavering generosity helped to create a wedding day that was truly magical. With the property’s incredible gardens and European-inspired architecture, it perfectly set the scene for a summer wedding under the stars.
The vibe: We worked with the incredible team at Tori Allen Events to bring the whole wedding together – they understood our vision from our first meeting. Angus and I knew we wanted to buck traditional wedding colour palettes and decor trends and create an event that truly felt like us. The creative brief was utterly personal, bringing in many design aspects featured in our own home – punchy shades, rattan, mix-matched plates and jaw dropping florals. We wanted the wedding to be a true representation of us as a couple and have little touches of us everywhere, creating a real sense of intimacy for all of our guests.
Words of wedding wisdom: Embrace the aspects of the day that you want to focus on, and have the confidence to say no to aspects that aren’t as important to you as a couple! Angus and I wanted the whole day to be deeply personal and reflective of us, and we used that to guide all of our decision making processes.
I’ll always remember… Allie: I had been getting ready in a house quite close to the ceremony area, and I had been watching the Tori Allen team create design magic all day. However, nothing prepared me for walking down the aisle towards Angus in the most beautiful setting, as his favourite song played surrounded by our closest family and friends. I had dreamt of this day for almost 10 years, so it was a pretty pinch-me moment.
Angus: For me, it was seeing Allie for the first time. She looked absolutely gorgeous and the moment felt so significant. Walking into the marquee for the first time and seeing the design come together… the flowers, the booths, the lighting – I just thought holy sh*t, we pulled this off!
Traditions: adopted, adapted or ditched? I would say we ditched more traditions than we adopted! We loved the idea of surprising our guests with the unexpected, introducing things like booth seating in the reception and spicy cocktails at pre dinner drinks. I even changed into a hot-pink backless dress halfway through the reception! We did however honor a few traditions that were very special to us, such as my Dad walking me down the aisle and handwritten vows. Angus and I are both highly sentimental people, so these personal moments are some we will treasure forever.
Hit or (near) miss: Angus: We had the most beautiful mid-20s weather, but boy did the sun pack a punch! During the afternoon heat, the sun shining directly into our reception area began to warp the floorboards – so the Tori Allen team were frantically running around trying to pull the cover back over the marquee.
Allie: Another hilarious moment was right as we went to exchange rings after reading our vows – which were HIGHLY emotional. My brother was my best man, and he was tasked with giving us the rings. As I handed him back my vows; completely flustered with trying to receive the paper and hand over the rings at the same time he threw my vows into the bushes. It really broke the tension and gave the crowd a good laugh!
Standout vendors: We had the most incredible team of suppliers, and each and every person was sensational. From Bianca Virtue, our fabulous photographer, to Blake’s Feast who created the most divine menu for us, we were supported by the best team of people who came to feel like family. Special shout-out to Jess and Kate from Tori Allen – thousands of emails, Zoom calls and moodboards – when the wedding was over I felt like I was missing a limb. The girls became such a huge presence in our lives and we felt like we shared every true high and low with them.
The outfit/s: Angus: My groomsmen and I were all kitted out in custom Oscar Hunt Suits. The dress code was black tie, so a sharp tuxedo was non-negotiable.
Allie: My first dress was a Kyha Studios creation, it was inspired by a style I tried on in my first ever appointment and we customized it so it was more bespoke. I would count down the days until my next fitting appointment with the Kyha girls, they were some of my most treasured moments of the entire 12-month wedding process. I found my dress prior to selecting Willow and Stone as our venue, and it was a wonderful coincidence that the romantic silhouette and off-white design complimented the setting perfectly. Seeing Angus’s reaction when I walked down the aisle in the dress was something I will remember forever. After sunset, I changed into a hot pink Staud dress for our first dance – nothing says party time like backless!
Walking Down The Aisle: Book of Love – Peter Gabriel ( Performed by Jack and Jordan)
Just Married: Kiss Me – Sixpence None The Richer and Higher Love – Kygo ( Performed by Jack and Jordan)
Reception Entrance: Starships – Nicki Minaj (Rutherford Entertainment)
First Dance: Vienna – Ben Platt (Rutherford Entertainment)
The future: Right now, we are enjoying the glow of being newly married. Despite being together for a decade, it feels like such an exciting new chapter. We really feel fortified in our commitment to each other and often spend hours discussing our plans for the future… right now it’s just us but eventually we hope we are lucky enough to have a Baby McAvaney!
CREDITS: Photos Bianca Virtue // Venue Willow and Stone Estate// Videography Moon and Back Co // Celebrant Jess Hills Weddings // Planning, flowers, stationery, signage + styling: Tori Allen Events // Catering Blake’s Feast // Bridal gown + veil Kyha Studios // Brides shoes Bottega Veneta // Bridesmaids dresses Shona Joy // Grooms suit Oscar Hunt // Groomsmen’s suits Oscar Hunt // Rings Grew & Co // Hair Aerial Studio // Makeup Vivienne Roche // Music Jack & Jordan + Rutherford Entertainment // Furniture Hire Harry the Hirer // Bridal getting ready-wear Jasmine and Will.