Jul 18, 2020
Jaime Lee Major is one of Australia’s brightest design stars. Her bridal collection has grown over the last 10 years making her one of the most sought after dressmakers to come out of Australia. Jaime Lee Major wedding gowns are meticulously crafted pieces of art.
A while back I photographed the Perth wedding of Sarah and Dave, which started in a majestic ceremony and ended in an actual rave. Throughout all that this wild Jaime Lee Major creation weathered all the wild glory.
I wanted to do a piece on her because I am inspired by her wild design talent and outer-space way of approaching bridal gowns for folks wanting something a little more on the edge. Her designs are for the fashion-forward bride (the exact words that came out of David’s lips all day at their wedding).
Born and raised in Fremantle (Perth), Jamie Lee Major rose to fame after she designed a gown for Kimbra at the Grammys in 2013. Her blue tulle and Swarovski encrusted dress was seen by 40 million people and she gained a mighty whack of international fame, and said in an interview for VOGUE that she hadn’t really thought about bridal couture but had so many enquiries that it ‘just sort of happened’.
She’s won WA Designer of the year, been featured in VOGUE, dressed Katy Perry, Lady Gaga and Rita Ora (to name a few). Major has since left the red carpet behind her now to focus her creative genius on wedding dress designs.
Jaime Lee Major wedding gowns are priced from $5000 to $24,000, but worth every cent. They are pieces of art that she carefully wraps around a human body, and have endless hours of labour put into every last little detail. There are hundreds of thousands of beads, crystals, pearls and stitches in her creations.
The bridal collection features a lot of tulle and exposed flesh, lavishly covered with luxurious embellishments. They’re a Pinterest board dream. You can forget the classic silhouette or cathedral length train.
Jaime Lee is talking frills, cuffs, ruffles, sparkles and bespoke demi-couture tailoring. The materials tend to stray away from classic whites and ivories and delve into lux golds and silvers. Something I’m excited to see more of in contemporary weddings.
If you’re a bride who wants to do things differently then Jaime Lee Major’s collection is awe-inspiring. See-through trouser suits and everything covered in Swarovski will certainly turn some heads and take your Grandmothers idea of the traditional wedding dress for a glorious golden ride. The way the light catches the sparkles and the overstated glamour is perfect for any bridal shoot.
There is no end to this gifted woman’s creativity. She is such an exciting element in Australian wedding scene. One of her recent catwalk gowns used the most insane floristry to bring her ideas to life.
I love capturing everything that makes the day special, the bride’s dress is at the top of my list. Be over indulgent, be bountiful, be sumptuous. It’s a wedding, nothing can be too amplified! Your dress should make you feel like you’ve never felt before and there is no way in hell you can’t feel $1million dollars in a Jaime Lee Major wedding gown.
Jaime Lee Major on instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jaimeleemajor
Jul 15, 2020
Bangin Hangins are a category unto themselves – who knew that somewhere between “wedding photographer” and “wedding stylist” there was a standalone category entitled “awesome majestic aerial shit from another dimension that hangs from the ceiling before eventually being whisked away and leaving you wondering how you’ll ever deal with the room being it’s regular dull self”. Etc.
Bangin Hangins make installations that are installed in (/on, with, either-or-and-the-other) the ceiling. Installed TO the ceiling. Take your pick. Whatever the correct terminology is, it results into your ceiling being morphed into some impossible colourful, textural playground.
I’ve been fortunate to see the handiwork of this maestro at three weddings now: an incredible at-home wedding with Sam and Paul (ft. One More Song Entertainment – see their piece here on how to plan your wedding music), Pepe and Sam at The Line in Footscray, and at a Tanglewood Estate elopement were we installed our futuristic neon arbours.
Enjoy this brief little peer into their founder Sarahs fireworks brain.
With Covid forcing us all indoors and all manner of brilliant doorstep portrait projects happening, I wanted to kickstart some convos with my local community and find out how the time and strange space is being used, as it’s never been more important to stay connected and sharing.
I am Sarah. AKA Queen of the Bangers. I’m an events based installation artist. My mates generally get the concept, although a few call it Hangin Bangin instead of Bangin Hangins. Which has the potential to be completely misinterpreted.
I like to think the kind of couple we attract are our kind of people. Its nice to work with like minded people who like something a bit left of centre.
My take on colour / form / placement and proportion. All important when putting together a Bangin aerial installation.
We’ve been working on shoots and ideas for future pop ups once its safe. Once these shoots are released, couples might draw some inspo from these.
For the very near future, boutique. So forget inviting that second cousin and cling (at distance) to your favs and let loose. This is my kind of party covid or no covid. Much more fun. I hope we can help make it a Bangin memorable party.
I reckon Bangin Hangins would look bloody ripper draped all around The Deck at Circa.
Jun 12, 2020
I’ve been lucky to photograph love and ceremony on all continents, which means seeing so much of the worlds most incredible bridal design on brilliant lovers in all kids of places: these are 5 of the best modern wedding dresses i’ve had the pleasure of working with.
When you look at how Australian and New Zealand designers have to fight for a place at the table with smaller markets and at a geographical disadvantage to the rest of the world, it’s no surprise then that some of the most brilliant and forward-thinking designs have actually come from this corner of the globe as they place tradition a gentle second, and innovation first, pushing the craft of design past the edges.
And so, incidentally, these designers are all from Australia and New Zealand.
As an art-lover, a beautiful and thoughtfully designed gown is captivating to look at and brilliant to photograph (as a kid who grew up on death-metal and martial-arts, this isn’t exactly a sentence I ever thought i’d say).
This is a run-down of 5 of the most beautiful gowns i’ve had the pleasure of photographing.
Brooke Tyson Ritual is what happens when you have a curious kiwi, captivated by the world of cinema and nostalgia and with a childhood spent playing dressups, cast her hand to the fine art of bridal couture.
Suzanne Harward is a designer i’ve had the good fortune of working with several times, and you can see a feature on 3 of the best Suzanne Harward wedding dresses here too.
Suzanne Harward is an icon of the Australian bridal design scene, with a rich long history while always staying two steps ahead of the trends. Check out the impossibly brilliant songbird gown.
Suzanne Harward songbird gown.
Alex Perry isn’t necessarily a name synonymous with bridal design – and this isn’t even a piece from his bridal collection – but that didn’t stop the forward-thinking Liv from adapting one of his other pieces for her wedding to Adam.
These two marvels are featured on Together Journal, where you can see even more glorious images of their day and her incredible sense of style.
Founded by Kyha Simpson after tying the knot and wanting to bring something new to the industry, One Day Bridal. Designed and handmade in Melbourne, One Day Bridal are one of the early frontrunners of doing things differently, and as a result have inspired an industry-wide shift in risk-taking designs.
I hope i’m not the only one who, based on the brand name, initially thought Paolo Sebastian was some kind of lavish octogenarian European designer with over half a century of brilliant work under their belt.
Nope – it’s the work from the genius mind of an impossibly young designer, Paul Vasileff, straight out of Adelaide, Australia.
Paolo Sebastian gowns blend a nod to tradition offset with something resembling the top end of the disney playground of fantasy designs.
Jaime Lee Majors designs are from another planet. The Fremantle / Perth designer made a name for herself cutting cloth for every celebrity under the sun, beginning initially with an epic gown for Kimbra right around the time of her career take-off.
Since then, Jaime Lee Major has used her progressive, artistic inspired approach to design gowns that push bridal to the very edge. Check out this incredible piece from the Fremantle wedding of Sarah and Dave.
Jaime Lee Major on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jaimeleemajor
While you’re here, take a peep at these incredible modern wedding jumpsuits.
Jun 10, 2020
Melbourne is known for its eccentric and eclectic foodie scene. Of all the Aussie states, its probably the most innovative and experimental when it comes to its hospitality industry. Bacon gelato? Yup. Lamington Jafles. Um, hells yeah. You name it, Melbourne is comfortable going gourmet, or going gonzo. In the spirit of amazing, innovative wedding catering, I’ve created a rundown of the best wedding caterers Melbourne has to offer. Grab a knife and fork and settle in. Let’s do this.
Much like an actual firecracker, the spreads created by this awesome team absolutely GO OFF! Firecracker Event are pretty much a turnkey operator for all your event needs. They combine styling, service and, of course, food to turn your event into a guaranteed winner.
“Firecracker is built on the concept of Enlightened Hospitality—a term coined by New York restaurateur Danny Meyer. It means that every person you engage feels safe, welcome and at home with you. It’s about going the extra mile and prioritizing relationships over transactions.“– Firecracker Event
Firecracker Event can cover everything from platters to full service dining. Some of the glorious foods included in their packages are:
Does that not sound entirely, mouthwateringly delicious to you? It’s a big fat ooft here from me.
Firecracker Event website: https://www.firecrackerevent.com/
The bloody wonderful ladies at Fat and Skinny catering are a team of hardworking, hospitality driven human beings who love a good laugh. They’re all for a song and a dance and they can always be counted on to match (if not exceed) the excitement you have about your event, and are some of the best caterers Melbourne has at hand.
They’re fun, they’re friendly and they’re focused on giving you the best food they can possibly muster. I’ve personally seen their head honcho, Naomi, go to excruciatingly loving means to make a surprise dish for a bride that used a unique ingredient that her late father used to produce. Absolutely magic stuff to see.
“Come for the love. Stay for the party.”– Fat and Skinny Catering
The sheer range of foods available at Fat and Skinny Catering make them one of the best wedding caterers Melbourne has to offer. It’s just a bonus that every single dish they serve up is *chef’s kiss* noice.
Their wedding catering range includes, but is certainly not limited to:
Lordy! I simply cannot.
Fat and Skinny Catering website: https://www.fatandskinny.com.au/
If you want the best wedding cake Melbourne has to offer, this taste-queen is coming at you with some of the best wedding cakes this side of the northernmost tip of the north pole. The finesse and artistry that goes into each and every cake Mirjana creates is out of this world. It seems obvious that wedding cakes should taste great, but Mirjana is time and again the benchmark for giving the same amount of love to their interior as their exterior.
With a Croatian and Serbian heritage, she grew up watching her Baka (grandmother) work as cake decorator and the apple does not fall far from the generational tree.
She’s also a designer by trade which really shows in her delectable dessert creations.
Check out the cake design gallery on her website and you’ll see why she has sealed her place as one of Melbourne’s best wedding cake makers.
To find out a little more about the maestro herself, check out the feature on Torte by Mirjana.
Torte by Mirjana website: https://www.tortebymirjana.com/
Another crafty wedding cake maker, Miss Ladybird Cakes is here to kick ass and bake cakes, and she’s all out of asses to kick. Gina makes the best wedding cakes in Melbourne.
Having been in the business for 12+ years Gina, Miss Ladybird herself, is the creative mind behind this amazing cake baking venture, and it’s no small feat being around for that amount of time – which translates to a hell of a lot of happy faces catered for at weddings. She’s always been super creative and is actually a qualified chef.
Miss Ladybird has brought two of her greatest passions together, food and design, to build a beaut business and we get to reap the benefits.
“Our main aim is not to be the best, but to make a product we are proud of, and one which interprets the love we have for an industry we have spent our lives immersed in.”– Miss Ladybird Cakes
Miss Ladybird Cakes website: http://www.missladybirdcakes.com/
Now, last but 1000% not least, we’ve got Fourside Events who fully customise the menus for every single event they cater. Like, who has the time or the energy to do that? These guys are insane.
Their food is sourced from local suppliers and they incorporate only the best seasonal produce into their bespoke menus.
“Collaborating with some of Melbourne’s most influential event experts, producers and suppliers, we cater different. We do it awesome, and we love it.”– Fourside Events
You can see the kind of menus they’ve created for wedding parties up in lights on their website. They feature foods and beverages like:
Fourside Events website: https://www.foursideevents.com.au/
Also for some incredible catering outside of Melbourne, check out the wood fired wedding pizzas at the Cosmo Hotel near Castlemaine.