For some, a cold and rainy wedding day would equal disaster. Not Lex and Ben, though, who had a total ball when their mid-summer nuptials put on a wintery show. “Having our wedding in the dead of summer, I was worried about the fact that my dress had long sleeves,” shares bride Lex. “Turns out, our wedding day was really cold and really rainy. Instead of fighting it, we decided to roll with it.”

From taking pictures on the empty Opera House steps in the freezing wind and rain to boating and swimming in the cold sea, the weather made their day even more memorable, spill the pair. Yep, you read that right, folks – these pair took a boat out between their ceremony and reception and had a splash in the harbour – and we’ve got the pics by the oh-so talented Hayley Rafton to prove it! After a quick change – Lex swapping out her stunning but rain-drenched Prea James Bridal gown from Hope X Page, and Ben slipping back into his suave Joe Black suit, the party kicked on on dry land.

THE VENUE “When we stumbled across Campbell’s Stores Sydney online, we knew we had to visit. The building itself has so much history and character, and the exposed stone structure and its breathtaking view of the harbour seriously blew us away. It was actually the first venue we made a visit to, and we were sold immediately!”

FAVE DETAILS “We were absolutely in love with the way our wedding was styled. The Artisan Refinery Collective genuinely fulfilled all of the expectations that we had in terms of flowers, our fabric-draped arbour, evening table setting, boat decorations and catering, and so much more.”

THE DRESS “When I went to Hope X Page on the hunt for the perfect dress, I was really set on purchasing a very simple, minimal and traditional gown, and that is so NOT what I ended up choosing! The moment I saw the Elena gown by Prea James Bridal, I knew that I had to try it on. I’ve always loved a bit of sparkle and the sleeves on that gown are what really sold me. I truly felt like a bride in it, and as soon as we paired it with those tulle wings in the boutique, I didn’t want to take it off. The week before our wedding I decided to purchase a second dress to wear at our reception, and I’m so glad I did! The rain pretty much made my ceremony dress unwearable after our photos. I love the versatility it brought to our wedding album, as well. Ben went suit shopping at Joe Black just two weeks before our wedding. Talk about last minute!”

STANDOUT VENDORS “I’m convinced we had the best photographer on the planet capture our wedding. Hayley Rafton isn’t only insanely talented at what she does, she has a gift of connecting with people, and that sets her apart. There was significantly less I had to worry or think about on our wedding day because of Hayley, and every time I look at our wedding pictures, I am blown away by the calibre of her work. She’s a top-notch photographer and individual. I would recommend her 1000 times over to anyone looking for a reliable, hard-working, talented and FUN photographer. She seriously was open to anything– rain and all.”

Lex and Ben’s wedding first appeared in issue 35 of Hello May, which you can pick up (along with a bunch of other inspo) over on our online store. And while you’re here, we rec checking out the directory, which is filled with all the very best vendors, including photographer Hayley Rafton, Hope X Page bridal boutique, Prea James Bridal and Joe Black. Enjoy!

CONTRIBUTING VENDORS Photographer Hayley Rafton Stylist The Artisan Refinery Collective Florist Brittani Herschell (friend – bouquets), The Artisan Refinery Collective (ceremony, boat and reception) Ceremony, Reception & Catering Campbell’s Stores Sydney Cake The Garden Eden .Co Cake Topper Kustomai Workshop Celebrant Rob Stanmore (friend/pastor) Rings Michael Hill Boat hire Flotespace THE BRIDE Gown Prea James Bridal (ceremony), Bec + Bridge (reception) Bridal Boutique Hope X Page Tulle wings Dove Grey Getting ready PJs Le Rose Gifts Shoes Wittner THE GROOM Suit Joe Black Shirt Calvin Klein Shoes Common Projects Watch Omega