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A blind date led to the perfect match, and an American dream of a big day. Julie and Kyle’s outdoor wedding was full of fun, shabby chic features that you’ll love…

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How they met

Julie and Kyle were set up by Kyle’s sister, who had spent months trying to engineer a match. “She had been going on about Kyle forever, so I finally said she could give him my number, but I was so nervous, I rescheduled our first date twice!” Julie recalls.

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The proposal

Kyle chose the occasion of the couple’s anniversary to ask his bride to marry him. “We were having a picnic on the shore of the lake at our favourite park, swimming and lounging around on the beach, when Kyle got down on one knee in his swimming trunks,” Julie says. “I never imagined he would propose in a public place, so when he did I start screaming and crying with excitement.”

The bride’s outfit

Julie looked sensational in a mermaid-style gown by Tara Keely, with a sweetheart neckline, a fitted lace bodice and a ruffled train. “All the other gowns I tried on made me feel like I was just playing at dressing up, but as soon as I tried it on, I was ready to get married right there and then,” Julie smiles. “I had to stop myself running home and telling Kyle all about it!” Instead of a veil, the bride wore a handmade crown of flowers, and at the last minute, she ditched her lace wedges and wore a pair of cowboy boots.

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The groom’s outfit

Kyle wore an on-trend light grey suit from Calvin Klein that was bought in Macy’s, along with a striped tie. “He looked so sweet and handsome, I just wanted to squeeze him,” Julie laughs.

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The bridesmaids

“I never thought I’d be one of those brides with loads of bridesmaids, but by the time I’d asked my sister, Kyle’s sister, my cousin and my closest friends, suddenly I had eight!” Julie says. “It was such fun having them there for me throughout the day.” The bride gave her maids free rein to choose their gowns, as long as they were full-length and pink to match the scheme.

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The ceremony

Julie and Kyle’s wedding ceremony at Sierra Nevada’s HideOut was a reflection of all of their cultures. “My mother is Jewish, my dad is Catholic, and Kyle’s parents are Christian, so we wanted our ceremony to include a bit of everything,” Julie explains. “We wrote the service ourselves with the help of our celebrant, and were able to make it exactly how we wanted – relaxed and simple. I walked down the aisle with both of my parents, which is a Jewish tradition and felt really special.”

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The flowers

The beautiful bouquets and arrangements were a joint effort between the bride and Kathy’s Flowers, as recommended by the couple’s wedding venue.

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The reception

Julie and Kyle decided to let their venue speak for itself rather than having a strict theme. “The HideOut is the most amazing place I have ever been to,” Julie explains. “It’s rustic, earthy and naturally beautiful, so we wanted it to set the tone for the whole wedding.” The couple chose a relaxed barbeque reception, complete with traditional American mac and cheese. “It was important for us to make dinner really fun and casual, as we were outside in the middle of the woods, and a family meal with everyone passing the food around was perfect,” Julie adds.

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The details

As the wedding planning progressed, a girly vintage theme emerged. “My mother, sister and Kyle’s family were amazing and all helped me to hunt through thrift stores and garage sales for vintage floral crockery,” Julie says. “I tried to make everything myself, so looking back I realise what a reflection of me it really was. I was a bit nervous that Kyle would think it was too feminine, but I was having so much fun that he let me roll with it, on the condition that he didn’t have to wear a pink tie!”

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The cake

The simple champagne-flavoured cake was made by one of Julie’s bridesmaids. “We also had a Girl Scout cookie bar and a fire pit with s’mores,” Julie adds.

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The honeymoon

The newlyweds enjoyed a luxurious romantic honeymoon to Sandals Emerald Bay in the beautiful Bahamas where they relaxed by the pool, enjoyed the local food and even swam with wild pigs!

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