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6 Aug 2020

Love is in the air at the Garden

Many things have sadly been cancelled but love is still stronger than ever and plenty of couples are falling in lockdown love and getting married.

Whether you are recently engaged or have been planning your big day for a while, a COVID safe wedding is still a fabulous time even with restrictions in place. A bride who recently walked down the aisle at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney shares her experience of a COVID safe wedding below. 

Wedding Garden Sydney
Elizaveta Fedorenko and Scott Shuttleworth at their ceremony in the Garden.

Meet the couple

“Scott and I met in February 2016 at the WiseTech IPO lunch hosted by Credit Suisse. We started dating in May of 2018 and soon formed a happy home with our two rescue kittens. We had been thinking about getting married for many months, but life kept getting in the way,” said recent bride Elizaveta Fedorenko.  

“When COVID-19 hit, it really made us realise that love is the most important gift we have – so we mutually decided that doing a wedding this year would be memorable, and allow us to focus more on each other than the flare of the event.”

What wedding vibe were you looking for?

"We really wanted to make the wedding about us and our love. We decided to leave the bells and whistles for later times, and focus on each-other."

Why did you decide on this venue?

"We love walking around the Garden and have been using them as an exercise escape throughout this year. We love that they are a natural oasis only a stones throw from the city where we met and an iconic part of Sydney. It was particularly magical having a near empty Opera House and Sydney Harbour bridge be our backdrop to “I do”."

Bennelong Lawn

What were your favourite details about the wedding?

"As our friends couldn't make it, we wanted to include them in spirit. I had been collecting champagne corks throughout our relationship (from good times with friends and family) and decided to use them to create an "E" and "S" that could be featured in the wedding photos and be a centerpiece at the ceremony. We were 50 corks short when we decided to get married, so we called on our loved ones to help us with the final bottles and pop some corks in celebration.

For something blue, I had a hand sanitizer in the pockets of the wedding dress! The dress was something borrowed from the maid of honor as were the sneakers from my mum. For something old, I wore my grandmother’s gold watch.

We were able to include Scott’s mum and sister through an audio link we set up with the help of equipment from our friends."

Wedding garden sydney

Vendor information:

  • Wedding ceremony location: The Bennelong Lawn at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney overlooking the harbour and Opera House – we had it to ourselves!

  • Wedding reception location: We opted out a traditional reception in favour of popping around to my parent’s house for a glass of bubbles and an amazing meal brought to our home by Macleay Street Bistro.

  • Photographer: Andrew Szopery

  • Celebrant: Robyn Pattison (the Wedding Pixie)

  • Hair: Rachel the French Hairdresser, she even made an amazing love song playlist for me.

  • Florist: Matt Bisaro – the Floral Craftsman. Matt personally delivered the most incredible bouquet to my hairdresser and did all the pins and hair flowers too.

  • Event planner: Myself

  • DJ: We played Lucky by Jason Mraz on our wireless speaker to walk down the “aisle”. We had to improvise with so few of us there.

  • Gown: An amazing Alex Perry piece with pockets, borrowed off our maid of honour

  • Makeup: Myself – restrictions meant we couldn’t make a beauty appointment

Wedding garden sydney

Things to consider

Here are a few things to remember if your big day is planned while wedding restrictions apply due to COVID-19 but don't forget to keep up to date by visiting nsw.gov.au.

  • As the date gets closer communicating with your guests is key. Remind everyone that it's important not to attend if they are feeling unwell and encourage them to get tested if they have symptoms. 

  • Use a video broadcast or live stream to involve loved ones who can't attend your wedding due to restrictions or feeling unwell.

  • Explore outdoor wedding venues to ensure there is enough space to allow social distancing.

  • Some couples have opted to have photography taken before the ceremony to limit the time in-between photographs. 

  • Look at ways to minimise hygiene risks such as sharing food or tagging glassware, so guests remember which is theirs. 

  • Ask the celebrant or MC to remind guests of what is okay and what's not so that everyone can remain socially distant and hygienic. 

  • Have fun, make memories and enjoy your special day. 

Learn more about wedding venues at the Garden here

Tags: wedding
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