When preparing for a wedding I usually suggest a rehearsal the day before the ceremony, at the same time if possible so we have a good idea of the positioning of the sun and the weather forecast in mind. This often works well in Margaret River as members of the bridal party are usually travelling down the day before to attend. So the day before Jo and Matt’s beach wedding at Gnarabup at the wedding rehearsal we had decided on the perfect spot on the beach for the arbor, and where to direct the ceremony for the best view of the ocean. There was some talk of rain, but we were hopeful this was not going to eventuate.
The morning of the big day I woke to news of a ‘super swell’ around the oceans of Margaret River. People had been posting pictures already of the amazing waves. I knew this would mean some amazing photos for my beautiful couple! When I arrived at
Gnarabup it became clear what else this super swell was going to mean – the waves had been coming up so far that half the beach was missing! The wonderful team at Barefoot Beach Weddings had been monitoring the situation, and asked the Empire Events crew to set up the ceremony in the far corner of the Gnarabup beach. There was still the occasional wave lapping at the first row of chairs, but it seemed to be settling down.
I continued my set up, somewhat distracted by that amazing ocean swell. Guests were starting to arrive. And then, RAIN! Luckily I had my roadie with me to help grab all of the sound equipment, throw a rain cover over my PA system and save my paperwork! As we all gathered under the shelter of the White Elephant Cafe and waited for the rain to pass there was a current of excitement and expectation in the air. All this time my groom was the picture of calm. He was sure that the rain would clear, and we would be able to have the ceremony on the beach as planned, and he was right. The showers passed and we made our way once more down to the arbor to prepare for the arrival of our bride.
As Jo made her way down the beach to her groom, her father by her side, the magic of a beautiful wedding took over. This couple, who I had the pleasure of getting to know over several coffees and conversations, were finally standing before each other exchanging vows and rings in one of their favorite places. Their ceremony was simple and elegant, reflecting their values as a couple, evoking some traditions of the past, and of course with a few laughs thrown in for good measure. The weather behaved itself, and the ocean continued to look amazing during the ceremony. Only once did a cheeky wave come up and lap at the guests feet – lucky it was a barefoot wedding!
Beach weddings can be full of surprises – mother nature has her own plans for your special day. But they are such a beautiful experience, especially when you can feel the sand through your toes, and have the sounds of the ocean in the background as promises are made, and love declared.
I wish the wonderful Jo and Matt a world of happiness and love as they step into married life together.
Thanks to Jo and Matt for sharing some of their beautiful photos by Driftwood Photography with me!