Mardi Gras is a time where we come together as a community and a nation to celebrate love without boundaries, and it was at the 2010 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras that not only was love celebrated but it was also found for Craig + Neil. It was at the Colombian that Neil spotted Craig in the crowd and delivered his opening line of “do you mind if I bother you for a bit?” And as they say, the rest is history!
It was when they were on holidays with friends in Borocay in the Philippines that Craig was to propose to Neil. He arranged a surprise day out where they spent the day at the spa with full head to toe treatments followed by a sunset sail. Then, while they were enjoying their flame lit dinner on the beach, Craig distracted Neil with “what’s that over there?” and quickly produced the ring from his pocket just in time for Neil to turn back around. Shaking like a leaf, all he managed to say was “will you…” before he froze and broke down in tears. Neil started crying and said “YES!” before Craig could say anything else.
The acceptance of Craig’s proposal was sealed with a silver ring that he had bought on the island. Given that he had planned to propose there, he wanted to have a ring that was bought locally and would hold the memory of the proposal forever. And so, the planning for the wedding commenced and Jul 15th, 2016 was the date chosen. Both Craig + Neil wanted to be married where it’s legal and meant something to them both and so given that Neil is English and we do not yet have marriage equality in Australia, London was the obvious choice.
On the day, the grooms were dressed in custom suits by Brent Wilson with shoes from Eves and Gray and both chose fragrances by Paco Rabanne. For embellishment, Craig’s chose cufflinks from Scotch & Soda, while Neil’s were vintage maps showing both Sydney & his home town of Cambridge from Etsy.
The wedding party was made up of two Best Women, in place of Best Men, and two Maids of Dishonour. The Best Women wore Carla Zampatti dresses with Shoes of Pray shoes while the boys, the Maids of Dishonor, were also in suits by Brent Wilson, with shoes from Topman. Hair and makeup was by Naomi Serene, and the entire day was captured in photography by Lemonade Pictures.
For their ceremony and reception, Craig + Neil chose The Swan at Shakespeare’s Globe in London. Their ceremony was officiated by Dawn Saunders from Lambeth Council who welcomed Craig + Neil down the aisle to the sounds of “Simply the Best” by Tina Turner, and sent them on their way as Mr and Mr to Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered”.
Following the fabulousness of the ceremony, Craig + Neil joined their 42 guests for dinner and a celebration with 80’s and 90’s music only by their DJ, Frank from Matt Maurice, and were introduced as a married couple with a first dance to Kylie Minogue’s “All I See”. The night ended with the everyone cat walking around the venue to RuPaul’s "Sissy That Walk!".
PHOTOGRAPHY BY LEMONADE PICTURES
Suits – Brent Wilson // Shoes – Eves and Gray // Groomsmaids’ Dresses – Carla Zampatti // Groomsmaids’ Shoes – Shoes of Prey // Groomsmen Shoes – Topman // Accessories – Scotch & Soda // Hair & Make Up – Naomi Serene // Stationery – Little Paper Soul // Flowers – Hybrid Flowers // Cake – Choccywoccydoodah // Venue – The Swan at Shakespeare’s Globe // Entertainment – Frank from Matt Maurice
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