Wedding of Amber Holmes and Erek Ladd

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Bride: Amber Holmes

Groom: Erek Ladd

Wedding date: April 2, 2016

The meeting: Erek was holidaying in Bendigo from his home country of the United States. Whilst there to visit friends, whom were Amber's family, the two were introduced with the sly intentions of playing Cupid. Our first meeting was a casual pizza party setting amongst friends. From there, Erek suggested Amber help him find his way around the foreign town, to which she gladly accepted.

The proposal: After 11 months of dating, Erek returned to the United States due to his visa expiring. Amber would stay in Bendigo to complete her university studies. While Erek had been working towards plans to return to Bendigo for Christmas, Amber surprised him by showing up on his doorstep in October. It was a beautiful reunion and come January 11, Erek surprised her with a proposal in his hometown of Central Square, New York. They went down to the local park, Crossroads Park, where he had set up a camera as a distraction for  some photography of the nature. Then, unbeknownst to Amber, Erek dropped to his knee and proposed.

The wedding day: They were married April 2 in the Ladd Family Barn in Central Square. The property and barn had been in the family since the early 1800s. The barn was decorated to reflect on the history of the location, but also to show the new life and marriage that was being created there.

The styling was chic, provincial and vintage, designed by Amber, a graphic designer with a love of all things antique and retro. The colour scheme could be described as whites, woods, and twine, with beautiful white roses adorning the location. It was a small occasion with only 30 of our closest friends and family in attendance, including Amber's parents, siblings, and grandmother who made the 16,000 km journey to attend. The atmosphere was light, fun and happy, but also an amazing experience to witness the coming together of people from two opposite sides of the world. Following the ceremony, there was a lunchtime reception held on site in the family's old wood shop that was remodelled and decorated to match the wedding theme. Due to the relaxed nature, as well as number of children in attendance, the decision was made to have a pizza wedding! We had seen the idea on Pinterest, and styled correctly, it actually looked quite beautiful! It was also a "throwback" to our original meeting.

The bridal party consisted of Erek Ladd of Central Square, NY (Groom), Amber Holmes of Bendigo, VIC (Bride), Jesse Kuehn of Pottsville, PA (Best Man), Dakota Keithley of Twin Lakes, MN (Groomsman), Brianna Holmes of Bendigo, VIC (Bridesmaid) and Isabella Holmes of Bendigo, VIC (Flower Girl).

Our amazingly talented and generous photographer was Jared Willis of Jared Willis Photography, Binghamton, NY.

Our cake was created and provided by Michele Swindell of Cakes by Michele, Syracuse, NY.

Catering was supplied by Nonna Dina Pizza, Central Square, NY.

Chairs, tables and table settings were supplied by Able Smith Tent & Party Rental, Cicero, NY.

Hair and make-up done by Martha Zemsta of Moss CNY, Baldwinsville, NY.

Wedding dress from Bendigo Bridal Collections, Bendigo, VIC.

Wood engraved party favour coasters by Breanne Robinson of Bre Creative Design Co., Caledon, ON.

Invitations and signage designed by Amber, Ladd Design Co.

The dress: The dress was a beautiful knee-length tea dress purchased by Amber's mother, Belinda Holmes, from Bendigo Bridal Collections. It was everything she had envisioned with a gorgeous white lace overlay and long transparent sleeves with white trim to keep warm in the cooler month the wedding was to be set. She chose the dress via an online video chat - it was the last of that design left and in her size! After several days of anxious anticipation, the dress arrived in the mail and even more beautiful in person.

The cake: White two-tier cake. Top layer chocolate, bottom layer vanilla. Adorned with white roses.

The photographer: Jared Willis Photography

The honeymoon: We will be planning a honeymoon upon our return to Australia in late 2016.

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