These two grew up only 280m from each other, but only really hit it off one night out at karaoke. “We found ourselves in deep conversation for two hours, very drawn to each other, and the rest is history.” Five years later, to the day, they got married, complete with a Vietnamese Tea Ceremony, too. “The day was about honouring our family’s heritage and also needed to reflect our personalities,” says the bride, who had her hair and makeup done by the inimitable The Future Mrs.

LITTLE LOL “Our wedding date was set to be Saturday 22.02.2020 as the repetition of the number 2 was going to be used to symbolise the union of 2 people, 2 families, 2 cultures. We then realised that the following Saturday was going to be a Leap Year day. I thought it could be pretty special to get married on a unique date; Nick liked the idea of only celebrating our anniversary every 4 years! And like that, we leaped into a new date.”

THE VENUEHigher Ground ticked some of our key criteria: beautifully designed space and delicious selection of food and wine. We liked that it wasn’t a wedding venue but a stunning restaurant which was already thoughtfully fitted out. We like that it still had the industrial warehouse look with the exposed beams and distressed bricks as it highlighted the history of the building. I’ve grown up in a family that shows love through feeding people, so good food was an important component of the decision making. The ability to have an abundance in food was seen through the bottomless grazing table on top of the canapes and bowls, plus the ice-cream cart sealed the deal for me. The thing that sold it for Nick- his non-negotiable- it needed to serve party pies!”

THE INSPO “The vibe we wanted was cheerful, cheeky, vibrant, romantic and glamorous in an understated way. The whole event, from Friday’s tea ceremony to Saturday’s wedding centred around the coming together of our two cultures as well. My parents and I are first-generation Australians (we came to Australia 1990 as refugees) and Nick’s English-Australian background also includes First Nation. The use of colour was key to symbolise Australia and Vietnam. Red was central to represent luck, love and passion and green to represent good health and growth. A touch of gold was applied in the design and styling to illuminate the glam and magic.”

FAVE DETAILSThe flowers by Cecilia Fox were absolutely stunning. The colour palette and variety in texture in the bouquet and arrangements in the chapel and the reception were truly magical. The six-piece band was a key highlight. Many of our guests [commented] that it felt like a rockstar wedding [and] I think the live music was a big contribution to that. The vocalist Jess D’Souza was exceptional.”

THE DRESS “I ended up trying on about 100 dresses! I just loved everything I tried on, A couple of my gorgeous bridesmaids even flew up to Sydney with me on two different occasions so I could go to trunk shows from designers I admired. I ended up with a sample dress from Suzanne Harward, with an overskirt. I fell in love with the lace on the dress and liked the idea of having a skirt I could take off after the ceremony. Nick got his suit made at Oscar Hunt Tailors. He always wanted to rock out in a brown suit and used the wedding to do just that!”

TALK ABOUT TRADITION “The tea ceremony traditions were really special: The line of people carrying gifts on the groom’s side over the bride’s side was really significant to symbolise the welcoming of two families. When the groomsman came through with the gifts to the bride’s house, they also gave the bridesmaids a red envelope with cash in it. The bridesmaids opened it on the spot to see if it’s enough to accept them into the house. This part was really funny and added to the festivity. The gifting of jewellery from the mother in law to the bride was wonderful as she also gave a speech about our connection which was translated in Vietnamese by my uncle who was the MC. The wedding ceremony in the chapel: We manage to find a way to include the two different Christian faiths and two different languages in a Chapel. It worked beautifully by having a Vietnamese Catholic priest officiate key aspects required as we were in a Chapel, and a Reverend to do the homily (He is Nick’s dad’s best friend so it is very tailored to us and personal ). Some readings and prayers were done in English and some in Vietnamese. It was a really lovely union of two families through the mothers lighting each family candle.”

WE’RE GLAD WE… “We’re really pleased we ended up having a big bridal party. We really don’t know what we would have done without each and every one of them on the day. They were our rock: they really stepped up, divided and conquered to make our two-day wedding festival as stress-free as possible.”

STANDOUT VENDORS “Our gorgeous photographer Jess of Brown Paper Parcel is a gem to work with. She was an additional support over the two days to create a calm space amongst the frenzy.”

If you want to see more from the epic vendors Nhariah and Nick used for their big day, head to the following Directory links; The Future Mrs, Oscar Hunt Tailors and M.j. Bale. But first…

CONTRIBUTING VENDORS Photographer Brown Paper Parcel Cinematographer Where the Heart Is Florist Flowers Vasette (Tea Ceremony) & Cecilia Fox Venue Private Property (Tea Ceremony) Ceremony Xavier College Chapel Reception Higher Ground Decorations Bangin Hangins (Tea Ceremony) Ice Cream Cart Bianco Latte Cake Licked by Ray Ray Other Desserts The Red Balloon Candy Artisans (Friends) Cocktails Foxtail and Co. Hire Items Harry the Hirer Candles & Signage Stand The Small Things Co Photo Booth Heartbreak Hotel Lighting Hire Technical Events Signage Sketch + Etch Entertainment Craig Francis Music (Band) & Hong De Lion (Lion Dance) Celebrant Father Trung Nguyen SJ from Xavier College (Catholic) & Reverend John Gilmore (Church of Christ) Rings Natalia Milosz-Piekarska via E.G Etal & Katherine Bowman via Pieces of Eight First Dance James Welsby (Friend) THE BRIDE (Tea Ceremony) Bridal Gown Traditional Vietnamese Ao Dai Hair Piece & Shoes Dolce & Gabbana Accessories Ruth Tomlinson via Pieces of Eight (Earrings, Bracelet & Pearl Necklace) Hair & Makeup The Future Mrs Bridal Robe Romance Was Born THE BRIDE (Wedding Day) Bridal Gown & Veil Suzanne Harward Robes Le Rose Shoes Sophia Webster Accessories Ruth Tomlinson (Bracelet & Studs) & Belinda Esperson via Pieces of Eight (Earrings) Hair & Makeup Studio2 Bridesmaid Dresses Maje, Camilla, Alcer, Moss & Spy, KITX THE GROOM Suit & Shirt Oscar Hunt Tailors Bow Tie M.J. Bale Cufflinks Buster + Punch Shoes Double Monk Grooming Henri Lee Groomsmen Suits Oscar Hunt Tailors Groomsmen Gifts M.J. Bale