Heidi and Luke



Bride Name
Heidi Vanbockryck
Groom Name
Luke Evans
Date of Wedding
Dieter Decuypere (Speaking through Silence) – http://www.speakingthroughsilence.com/
Reception Held at
Dennenhof (Genk, Belgium) – http://dennenhof.be/
Ceremony Held at
Chapel Ten Eikenen (Zonhoven Belgium)
Wedding Dress
Carla Zampatti – www.carlazampatti.com.au
Groom’s Fashions From
Peter Jackson
Bride’s Hair By
Café Beauté (Hasselt, Belgium)
Bride’s Make-Up By
Café Beauté (Hasselt, Belgium)
Catering By
Dennenhof (Genk, Belgium)
Flowers By
Provided by family member
Invitations By
Adorn Invitations – www.adorninvitations.co.uk
Other Vendors
Shoes: Manolo Blahnik
Accessories: Miracles by Annelien Coorevits
Grooms Suit: Peter Jackson
On the day stationery: Bwedding Invitations – https://www.bweddinginvitations.com/
Car: Dreamday Cars (Koersel, Belgium)
DJ: Kurt’s DJ team (Hoeselt, Belgium)
Wedding rings: B &S Lyncris Jewellers
The two met when Heidi was travelling in Australia for six months and Luke was working in the Western Australian mines. Crossing paths in a hostel, the two started a love story that saw them moving to Melbourne and marrying each other in Belgium years later. Oh, we also forgot to mention that on the magical day evening the two spent the start of their life as newlyweds in a castle all to themselves; now this is really a fairytale love story!

Decadent Halloween Treat to Share

Halloween treat

Planning a romantic October 31 dinner with your fiancé? This fab dessert is a Halloween treat that’s swoon-worthy! Yes, it’s Sticky Toffee Pudding, but there’s a bonus. It’s more nutritious than it looks. Unlike a traditional sticky toffee pudding, this one is made with prunes.

And guess what? New scientific research shows that eating a daily serving of five prunes supports heart and bone health; and may even help slow and prevent bone loss, lowering the risk of osteoporosis. Who knew?

¼ cup (50 mL) unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing pan
¾ cup (175 mL) brown sugar
1 Tbsp. (15 mL) maple syrup
2 eggs
1 tsp (5 mL) all spice
½ tsp. (2.5 mL) vanilla extract
1½ cups (375 mL) all purpose flour
1 tsp (5mL) baking powder
1 cups (325 mL) California prunes
¼ cup (50 mL) chopped nuts
½ cup (125 mL) boiling water

½ cup (125 mL) unsalted butter
½ cup (125 mL) packed dark brown sugar
½ cup (125 ml) heavy cream

1 – Preheat oven to 350 F° (180°C).
2 – In a medium bowl with a hand mixer on medium high speed, cream together butter and sugar.
3 – Beat in syrup, eggs, all spice and vanilla.
4 – Add flour and baking powder and combine with a spoon just until flour is absorbed.
5 – Finely chop California prunes and add to mixture along with nuts.
6 – Add water and stir.
7 – Pour into a 9-inch (23 cm) square, greased cake pan and bake in oven for 35-40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

8 – Place butter, sugar and cream in a small saucepan and simmer over low heat until thick and glossy (approx.10-15 mins).
9 – Serve pudding hot from the oven with Toffee Sauce and ice-cream.

Makes 1 – 9-inch (23 cm) pudding

Bridal Fashion – Straps and Sleeves

Background,, embroidered lace. Delicate detail of a wedding dress close-up.

Haven’t found The Dress yet for your 2018 wedding? That’s just fine. The Bridal Fashion Week shows for spring and fall of ’18 reveal some alluring and exciting shifts from the  near-uniformly strapless gowns that have dominated the bridal fashion scene in recent years.

Yes, strapless gowns certainly have been a big trend for a long time, although they haven’t always flattered real women’s figures. Back in 2012, in an article for Slate magazine,   noted, “Strapless wedding gowns are by far the most common style. Kate Berry, the style director for Martha Stewart Weddings, estimates that while alternative necklines are starting to become more popular, about 75 percent of wedding dresses are strapless. Kim Forrest, the editor of WeddingWire, an online marketplace for engaged couples, says strapless “is the standard for wedding dresses and that won’t change anytime soon.”

Even in 2017, many local brides have donned strapless gowns for their wedding days — and looked lovely. If you’re broad shouldered though or narrow shouldered, or flat chested or ample chested, or slender or voluptuous with chubby arms, finding the right fit can be an issue. Especially if you want to be comfortable.

As Goldstein noted in Say Yes to a Different Dress, “I maintain that pulling off a strapless dress is no easy feat. Other common problems that the strapless dress presents? Visible tan lines. Spillover cleavage. Pouches of skin that bunch around the armpits. Stick-figure arms. Uniboobs. Generalized sagginess. And having a good figure alone doesn’t guarantee you’ll look great in a strapless style.” The last thing you want to worry about is your arms being “strapless ready” or your strapless dress slipping — and having to hike it up — mid-ceremony. How awkward would that be?

While the lovely princess-style silhouette of a strapless gown will remain a popular choice and a bridal classic, at the Bridal Fall 2018 shows, designers from Reem Acra and Vera Wang to Elie Saab, Carolina Herrera and Marchesa showcased plenty of sleeves, capes, caplets and straps. So for 2018, you’ve got plenty of choices!

Tropical: Your Destination Wedding Style

destination wedding


Fashionable finds for the jet-setting couple

by Lindsay Ruck
photos by Ophelia Photography

You’ve booked your tickets, renewed your passport and bought the matching luggage. It’s official – you’re having a tropical destination wedding. Now that you’ve got the particulars checked off, it’s time to think fashion. For the majority of your trip, fun in the sun attire will require little to no thought. But for that one day when you won’t be sporting a bikini or surf shorts, what will you wear?

Groom’s guide

Men’s destination wear has evolved greatly from the days of the Hawaiian shirt, puka shell necklace and shorts (can I get an amen?). Many designers are now creating full destination collections for not only the brides, but also the grooms. This means no excuses, guys. Exchanging vows on a beach doesn’t mean you get a hall pass to throw grooming out the window.

Let’s start at the more formal side of the scale. A linen suit is a great look on any guy. It’s breathable, light, and fits in beautifully with a beach setting. You can also lose the jacket after the ceremony (or before) and rock a collared dress shirt with linen pants. A linen suit is a great way to feel casual while wearing something special for the day. It also works well with lots of different footwear. (If you’re on the beach, you could even get away with going barefoot. Just make sure those toes are in check.)

Moving down the scale, we get to the dress shirt and chinos. The shorts could be as simple as a golf short or a fun nautical short with a pattern that pops. Think blues, yellows, purples and (gasp!) pink. The dress shirt could include rolled up sleeves and a few top buttons undone. A great belt is also the perfect accessory for this look. The key is to match your setting, so a bright colour on the top or bottom with a more neutral block of colour will complement that beachy backdrop perfectly.

If you are going for paler shades, such as beige, grey, and white, use accessories for that shot of colour. A splashy bow tie, a colourful pocket square, or a floral boutonniere will brighten up a neutral look.

destination wedding

Material girl

The simple strapless or spaghetti strap gowns are no longer the only options for destination wear. This evolvement in bridal includes layers, beading and intricate designs.

When choosing your gown, make a beeline to the travel-tested fabrics that will remain intact throughout your journey. Silk tulle is a versatile fabric. It’s lightweight, holds its shape and won’t require a day of steaming once you arrive at your destination. Another jet-setting fabric is rayon crepe – a tough yet elegant material that’s beautiful in bridal. It’s also one of the more affordable fabrics, but still has a silky appearance. Re-embroidered lace is a functional fabric that will fit into several settings – whether an elegant affair or a barefoot beach party. It’s another stress-less material that will travel with little to no wrinkles.

For those brides opting for a cooler destination, wool and knit fabrics are a wonderful option. The dress can go right in the suitcase and come up wrinkle-free and ready to wear. It’s a warm alternative for the winter bride.

Bohemian bridal styles are very popular right now, and this is great news for destination brides. Think flowers in your hair, A-line, loose flowing gowns, minimum makeup and free flowing strands. It’s pretty, soft and simple, but still holds the beautiful details of more elaborate gowns, such as beading, embroidery and cut outs.

Keep these points in mind when choosing your wedding attire:

1 – Transportation.Foradestinationwedding, transporting that dress you love so much is a little more complicated than sticking it in a garment bag and driving it home. Some brides opt to ship it (although for many that’s a scary thought). Others will pray they have a sympathetic flight attendant who is willing to hang the dress in a closet on the plane. There have also been brides who bought an extra seat for their dress. If you do pack your gown for transport, make sure to also bring a travel steamer. An alternative is to hang your gown in the bathroom, run hot water and shut the door. This option allows the wrinkles to fall out naturally.

2 – Terrain. There’s a strong possibility (depending on locale) that the bottom of that gown will touch gravel, sand and even dirt. The less material you have to drag, the better.

3 – Heat. The other strong possibility (especially if you find yourself on the beach) is that it’s going to be a scorcher. There’s a fine line between a healthy “glow” and an intense sweat – don’t flirt  with that line. Think light and breathable fabrics that don’t weigh you down.

4 – Tanlines. If you’re wearing a strapless gown, keep that in mind when you’re basking in the sun. Go with a bandeau bikini top to avoid any awkward lines on your day.

Have fun with your destination wedding style. There are plenty of fabulous options for both the bride and the groom. Happy shopping and safe travels! W

destination wedding

 *This story first appeared in the fall/winter 2015 print edition of Ottawa Wedding magazine. 

Stacey and Curtis


On The Water

compiled by Ariel Vered
photos by Danielle Murphy Studio

Our dogs brought us together,” says Stacey of meeting Curtis over three-and-a-half years ago. Stacey was out walking her Hungarian Vizsla dog one day, when a passerby mentioned they had just passed someone with the same breed of dog. “I ran to catch up, so we always say that I had to run him down,” she laughed.

To propose, Curtis worked in cahoots with one of Stacey’s best friends and her boss. “Trying to deceive Stacey is tough to do,” he said. One day in January 2016, Stacey was in a meeting fabricated by her boss, when Curtis walked in and announced that they were going on a get away ski weekend to Calabogie. After spending the day outside, Curtis set up a roaring fire and set up tea lights in the shape of a heart. “She came inside the house,” he said, “and I was on bent knee.”

The couple considered waiting until they bought a country property of their own to get married. Ultimately, they decided to get married rather than wait and, in just seven weeks, organized a wedding that was low key, outside and economical. “It was one of those serendipitous things where everything eventually all came together,” said Curtis. They picked the Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend so that people would have the next day off. An added perk was that they easily found a photographer, DJ and venue available because it was a holiday.

Stacey and Curtis wanted their wedding to reflect them as a couple. They knew they wanted to get married outside and near the water since they both love kayaking and canoeing. Since the Thousand Islands area is close to their hearts, they were married at Mallorytown Landing in Thousand Islands National Park, in front of family and friends and their two dogs. As a nod to their love of the outdoors, the couple donated to Thousand Islands National Park to have two red Muskoka chairs installed at their favourite spot in lieu of party favours.

Stacey, wearing a wedding dress she found on the website Kijiji, made her bridal entrance to the ceremony site via a cedar strip canoe made for Curtis by his dad. She was accompanied by a special friend with whom she had made a cedar strip kayak years ago. Following the ceremony, the wedding reception was held at nearby Happy Life Farms, whose collections of antique objects fit the wedding’s rustic theme.

“There’s no way it would have happened without our friends and families,” said Stacey of all the wedding’s personal touches. “They made it unique and possible in seven weeks.” Stacey’s mother and aunt making 30 pies for dessert. As a surprise for Stacey, Curtis had her friend make a cookies and cream cake — Stacey’s favourite — that looked like a birch bark piece of wood with their initials carved. It was topped by a picture of Curtis’ canoe and two red Muskoka chairs. Curtis, who has become a woodworker, made a customized wooden table for the cake that featured their wedding date and a heart that said Stacey and Curtis.

After their first dance to “Golden” by Lady Antebellum, a love song that they often dance to in their kitchen, the couple and their family and friends danced the night away. “I think there was five minutes that I wasn’t on the dance floor,” said Stacey. “It was so much fun.” W


Kristi and David


Bride Name
Groom Name
Date of Wedding
Darin Collison http://darincollisonphotography.com.au/
Reception Held at
The Emerson http://www.theemerson.com.au/
Ceremony Held at
The Emerson
Wedding Dress
Belle et Blanc http:www.belleetblanc.com.au/
Groom’s Fashions From
Oscar Hunt
Groomsmen’s Fashions From
Oscar Hunt
Bride’s Hair By
Runway Room Prahran
Bride’s Make-Up By
Ben Dniprowskij
Cake By
Ministry of Cake
Catering By
The Emerson
Flowers By
Jizell Flowers http://jizellflowers.com.au/
Invitations By
Adorn Invitations
Other Vendors
Accessories: Love On Jewellery http://www.loveonjewellery.com.au/
On The Day Stationery: BWeddings http://www.bweddinginvitations.com/
Kristi and David met in Amsterdam whilst travelling throughout Europe! The couple wed at the renowned and chic Melbourne rooftop space – The Emerson. The two wanted an intimate outdoor lunch with their loved ones with pops of colour throughout. The DIY element? Quirky signs for glass shots reading “Have a shot; we tied the knot.”

Romance in the Kitchen


Time to heat things up a little with a date for two in the kitchen. Why go out for dinner when you can have some fun, spend some quality time and whip up something delectable together? Here are a couple of recipes, courtesy of Oleiva Traditional Extra Virgin Olive Oil , that will deliver a fab, upscale dinner plus romance … and some tasty snacks for later. Enjoy!


TOTAL TIME: 45 mins


1 butternut squash weighing about 800 g (1.75 lb)

1 tbsp (15 ml) Oleiva Traditional Extra Virgin Olive Oil


6 sage leaves

1 clove of garlic, crushed

1 cup (120 g) shiitake mushroom

500g (1 lb) gnocchi

Freshly grated parmesan, to serve


Preheat the oven to 200˚C (392˚F). Peel the butternut squash and cut it in half. Scoop out the seeds and fibres. Cut the flesh into 2cm (¾ in) chunks.

Put the squash in a large shallow baking tray. Drizzle the Oleiva Traditional Extra Virgin Olive Oil over top and toss the chunks until coated, then season. Roast in the oven for 30 mins until the butternut squash is soft and browned along the edges.

Meanwhile, melt a knob of butter in a large pan. Add the sage leaves and cook for a few seconds until they have deepened in colour. Stir in the garlic, then the shiitake mushrooms. Cook, shaking the pan occasionally, until the mushrooms are edged with gold.

Cook the gnocchi according to the packet instructions, then drain well. Finally toss in the drained gnocchi with the mushrooms and butternut squash. Serve with Parmesan.


Homemade Chewy Granola Bars

Serves: 12-20
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 45 mins


2 cups (500 ml) oats

½ cup (125 ml) sugar

½ tsp (2 ml) salt

¼ tsp (1 ml) cinnamon or other spices as desired (cardamom, nutmeg, etc.)

2½ cups (300 g) additions: dried fruits, seeds, nuts, flax meal, bran cereal, puffed rice cereal, crushed pretzels, chocolate chips, etc.

⅓ cup (80 ml) peanut or other nut butter

6 Tbsp. (90 ml) Oleiva Traditional Extra Virgin Olive Oil

¼ cup (60 ml) honey, maple syrup, or Agave syrup

1 Tbsp. (15 ml) water


Preheat oven to 180˚C (350˚F). Depending on desired thickness, line a square (8×8 or 9×9) or rectangular (9×13) baking dish with parchment paper, then lightly grease the paper with Oleiva Traditional Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Thicker bars are a little more decadent, if you’re planning on using this as a dessert.

Process ⅓ cup (80 ml) of the oats in a blender or food processor until finely ground.

If necessary, chop up dried fruit and nuts. Raisin-size pieces are fine, but dried apricots, or apples, let’s say – should probably be chopped.

Stir together all dry ingredients (oats, ground oats, sugar, salt, cinnamon, fruits/nuts/seeds).

Whisk together wet ingredients – oil, honey, peanut butter, and water.

Mix together the wet and dry ingredients, then spread in the pan. Press firmly into the corners and edges so the top is even.

Bake for around 30 minutes, until the top starts to brown. Thicker bars will likely take longer, so you’ll need to watch them, depending on how much batter you’ve spread in what size pan. The edges will become deep golden and they may feel underdone in the center, but that’s okay. They’ll firm quite nicely as they cool.

Let cool in the pan on a cooling rack for at least 20 minutes, then take them out of the pan using the parchment. Let cool completely before cutting.

Wedding Invitations that Reflect Your Style

wedding invitations

wedding invitations

Choosing the best wedding invitations for you!

Your wedding invitations not only inform your nearest and dearest of the special occasion to come, they also serve as a tantalizing first glimpse of the style and theme of your big day. Planning an upscale, elegant or glamorous affair? Ensure the invitation reflects that. Whether your wedding will be a casual, rustic shindig, a boho bash or a chichi, urbane gala, family and friends should be able to get an idea of how formal the wedding will be or, in the case of a destination wedding, where the event will be held. Often overlooked, wedding invitations are a crucial part of the wedding planning process. Choosing and/or designing the perfect invitations should be a top priority.

This means more than just picking top-of-the-line cards and papers. It means choosing wedding invitations that reflect your style and the style of your wedding, and that give your guests all the information they need in order to attend your wedding.

A full wedding invitation suite includes everything from Save the Date cards to Thank You cards, preferably all in the same style. One of the things you should consider when deciding on the best invitations for your wedding is whether there are coordinating pieces of stationery for all of your wedding stationery needs.

Here’s how to pick or create invitations that reflect the unique style of your wedding day.

1          If you are planning a formal event, consider choosing a format that follows the “rules” of etiquette for wedding invitations. That means engraved stationery in white or cream with black text, but it does not mean that you are confined to invitations that look like every other one. You can choose from a wide assortment of styles in embossing, fonts and design. Whether you select a timeless classic like Ivory Elegance or the more subtle beauty of Refined Grace, your invitations will be a distinctive reflection of your formal, traditional wedding.

Semi-formal and casual weddings open up an entire range of wedding invitation styles from which you can choose or even design on your own. They can use colour, images and even photographs of the bride and groom. You can opt for gatefold invitations, with a photo of the bride and groom on the cover, that open to reveal the printed text of the invitation itself, or you can pick a brightly accented invitation with matching foil liners for the invitation envelope.

2          No matter what colours you have chosen for your wedding, you can find wedding invitations that reflect those colours. Standard wedding invitations come in cream or white and you can embellish these with a touch of your wedding colours in the form of ribbons or borders. Alternatively, you can pick invitations that make fuller use of your chosen colours in background papers, print or overall design.

3          Theme weddings have never been more popular than they are now. Many couples choose to be married in a beach or island setting, in a medieval castle or in a garden that pays homage to nature. If you decide to build your wedding around a theme, the best wedding invitations for you may be those that fit that theme. For a beach wedding, you might choose invitations embossed with delicate shells and fronds. For your fabulous Great Gatsby Roaring ’20s wedding, your invitations might feature art deco styling and bright colours.

4          Many designers of fabulous wedding dresses also include in their repertoire bridesmaid dresses, wedding stationery, invitations and table decor. Let your designer help you coordinate your wedding invitations with your wedding style.

5          If you are having a summer wedding, choose invitations that are light and breezy with lots of floral accents. For winter, you might choose a snowflake theme. You can find plenty of wedding invitations that are seasonal, reflecting the mood for both the time of year and traditional holidays, when you shop at online bridal shops.

Most of all, remember that the most important thing is to find wedding invitations that you love and that reflect your style as a couple. You might even find that the only way to get the look you want is to design them yourself (you’ll find lots of designs online).

*with text by Lisa Parker
Source: www.articlecity.com.

Sarah and Joe


A Personal Touch

compiled by ARIEL VERED

By fluke, Sarah and Joe got married eight years to the weekend that they met. Sarah, a social worker, and Joe, a nurse, met in 2008 while both working at the Brockville psychiatric hospital. “Joe ended up resurfacing and working more shifts on my floor,” she said. “We both have a love for healthcare and passion for helping people.”

They moved to Halifax four years ago, with Sarah taking a position in the mental health field and Joe teaching nurses at a community college. They travel home quite often and it was just before they were set to travel to Kemptville for Christmas in 2015, that Joe proposed.

The couple had agreed to exchange ornaments instead of gifts. Sarah had gotten off a night shift on Christmas Eve Day and Joe was adamant about exchanging ornaments before getting on the plane. “Hallmark had come out with a series of 12 ornaments called Ring in the New Season,” she said. “He got me the first ornament of that series and on it engraved, ‘Will you marry me, Peanut?’” This year, they got the second ornament in the series with their wedding date and plan to continue the tradition.

Sarah found her wedding dress at Chester and Felicity in Halifax. The dress, from the Enchanting collection by Mon Cheri Bridal, was an A-line silhouette with lace overlay. She especially loved the back of the dress. “It was a little revealing, but a little not,” said Sarah. “What I liked was it was simple. We tried to carry that forward through the whole wedding.”

Wanting a backdrop of greenery, Sarah and Joe were impressed with Weddings on the Rideau in Kemptville, a brand-new venue that featured the beautiful landscaping. They worked with Amie Jackson from Custom Events to bring their garden wedding vision into the venue’s white atrium, incorporating greenery and brown boxes on the tables. “It was a garden-outdoor-brought-indoor feel,” said Sarah.

There was a downpour on the wedding day, but that didn’t stop the bridal party from having a little fun. They took pictures at nearby Willowstone Chapel and Garden, complete with umbrellas. “At one point the bridal party broke out into ‘You Are My Sunshine,’” recalled Sarah.

They wanted to the wedding to be intimate and informal with closest friends and family and chose to not have a seating plan or even a head table. “We just wanted everyone to enjoy being able to sit with one another and mingle as they wish,” she said. They wanted to keep everything as local as they could. “Everything we did for the day was a small business affiliated with Kemptville or attached to Weddings on the Rideau,” said Sarah.

To incorporate their Scottish heritage, they included Scottish thistle in the table centerpieces. They also had a heart in a tartan design on their guest favours: saltwater taffy to bring some out east feel and heritage, as they both have extended family in Halifax.

“It was a day to remember,” said Sarah. “There are a lot of really great folks involved in our wedding day. From the simple charcuterie board from local Kemptville to our photographer, it really had a personal feel. It was really what we had wanted: personal and down-to-earth.” W


Laura and Liam




Bride Name
Laura Kelly
Groom Name
Liam Perrett
Date of Wedding
Reception Held at
The Pacific Hotel pacifichotelcairns.com/
Ceremony Held at
Kingdom Hall Of Jehovahs Witnesses
Wedding Dress
Devine Bridal
Groom’s Fashions From
Roger David
Bridesmaids Fashions From
After 5 Bridal and Formal
Bride’s Hair By
Tropical Beauty
Bride’s Make-Up By
Tropical Beauty http://www.tropicalbeauty.com.au/
Catering By
The Pacific Hotel
Flowers By
Perfect Moments
Invitations By
Adorn Invitations www.adorninvitations.co.uk/
Other Vendors
Accessories: Lovisa
On The Day Stationery: BWedding Invitations www.bweddinginvitations.com/
Laura & Liam’s Breathtakingly Picturesque Wedding

Wedding Date: 9th of December 2016
How many guests? 70

The couple wed at The Pacific Hotel in Cairns, Australia and the stunning photographs are enough to capture your heart. After meeting at a friend’s wedding, the two finally shared in their own special day!