Real Bride Advice – Big Ideas Cost Big Money

Thank you for the beautiful photo Roy Byrne

You asked I delivered – real bride advice, shaken not stirred. Today the lovely Christina reflects on her gorgeous beach wedding to the sweet Ben and the crazy amazing experience of wedding planning…


Christina + Ben

Behind-the-scenes photographer

Roy Byrne Photography

Date of Wedding

21 August 2015

Tell us a little about the proposal

We were in NZ on a routine trip to visit family in June 2014. Ben’s twin brother is a helicopter pilot and one day when we were planning to go to a nice restaurant for lunch the boys decided to take the helicopter there. I thought this very cool and fancy!! We had just taken off and then began landing again no longer than 5 mins later! I thought we were doing an emergency landing as we were nowhere near the restaurant!! I was quietly freaking out but then we landed on top of a hill overlooking the snow-capped mountains and he got down on one knee. His brother and his wife then came out with champagne and chocolate to celebrate!

Any funny stories from the lead up to your wedding?

Not really, people just always joked about how funny it would be watching the most indecisive person they know (me) try to plan a wedding! And yes, it was comical! Finding bridesmaid dresses was also quite funny as I was trying to find dresses that were for 4 very different body shapes plus being breastfeeding friendly. That was interesting.

What was the inspiration behind your wedding style?

I wanted quite simple, neutral styling with nothing too over the top. I love flowers so most of the styling was based around floral arrangements like our floral arbor, bridal table garland and table settings.

How was the wedding planning experience for you? Good, bad, ugly…

I personally hated wedding planning!!! I thought I would love it as I have loved helping friends with their weddings but it’s very different when the pressure was on me. Mainly because I had no idea where too start but also because I am a very indecisive person and with weddings, there is an endless amount of options so it’s hard to focus and decide on what you actually want!

What was well worth the money?

We won on-the-day co-ordination with We Heart Events but even if we had to pay, a coordinator is worth every cent!! The amount of stress and time it saved us was invaluable!!! I also believe that its worth spending a little more on a good photographer as once the day is over, the photos are all you have to showcase your day.

If you did it again, what would you not stress about and/or spend money on?

My main stress was budget so that led me to stress a lot about trying to do things myself but I think some things are worth paying the extra for in order to have a care free day, such as flowers and styling/set-up. The extra money wasn’t a lot and was worth it to have the guarantee that everything would get done.

Favourite moment / memory of the day?

There is so many!!! Ben’s was when my processional music started and I walked down the aisle. Mine was seeing Ben get teary during the ceremony, saying our vows, and dancing the night away at the reception with all our loved ones! It was such a fun day and night!

Behind the Scenes Photographer Roy Byrne • Ceremony Noosa Hidden Grove • Reception: Noosa Waterfront Restaurant • Coordination & Styling Set Up We Heart Events •  Hire Items Simply Style Co • Flowers The Orange Blossom

What are you looking forward to in married life?

Everything! I’m even weirdly enjoying the annoying, boring things. I just love living life with Ben and saying that he’s my husband. I am excited to start a family though and buy a new house together and support each other through everything.

Any other advice for real brides like you?

Do your research on wedding budgets before you set one! Have an idea of what you want for your day and plan around that. We just randomly plucked a number out of thin air because we thought it sounded reasonable but when we actually looked into prices of things, we soon realised we couldn’t have everything we wanted for the budget we set! Also, Don’t get too caught up in Pinterest, it gives you great ideas however it can make you obsess about what the perfect wedding looks like and you can lose focus on what’s important and the actual purpose of the day. Also, it dangerous when it comes to budget!!! Big ideas cost big money!!!

Are you recently married and want to share your experience? You can get in touch with me here >

I believe weddings are a unique time for intense love, optimism and hope. And if you are better informed and better prepared you will have a better chance to tap in to this joy.

And more joy in the world is a good thing.

Happy Planning,


P.S. Found this helpful? Feel free to share via the social link below to spread the wedding joy to other couples like you.


Hi, I’m Amanda Vodic, principal planner at We Heart Events and founder of Wedding Planning Masterclass. I work with couples that are CRAZY EXCITED about creating beautiful, meaningful, all-kinds of wonderful weddings. I help you get more joy from the wedding planning experience - while making it feel like it’s so easy you could become one of the pros yourselves.

Member Login
Welcome, (First Name)!

Forgot? Show
Log In
Enter Member Area
My Profile Not a member? Sign up. Log Out