Penny and Glyn

Sometimes I am surrounded by so much beauty I struggle to take it all in. I’m not just talking about physical beauty, but about the beauty of emotions, the beauty of people of all ages and backgrounds who care for each other coming together and the beauty of small moments.

Penny and Glyn’s wedding was one of these occasions.

Warren Photography

They met on the first day of high school in Sydney and were part of the same friendship group all the way through uni. It was only once they were nearing the end of their tertiary studies that they became a couple. Not long after this, Glyn was transferred to Melbourne for work. They told me that it was (ironically) perfect timing on their part – they spend over ten years living a few streets from one another, then as soon as they became a couple, one of them moves states!

Such was their bond, however, that a mere 900kms weren’t going to get in their way. After enduring two and a half years of flights back and forth, Penny transferred to Melbourne to be with Glyn. They set up a life and a home together and the rest, as the saying goes, is history.

Warren Photography

They took off on a month-long overseas holiday a week after becoming engaged. Both Penny and Glyn say that the time spent overseas, just the two of them, allowed the realisation of the life ahead of them to sink in and they returned home even more excited about their marriage.

A year after Glyn’s romantic proposal, they married at the stunning Stones of the Yarra Valley (one of my all time favourite venues). Stones is at its best in autumn when all the leaves are changing colours, the days are crisp and the light is golden.

Warren Photography

It was touching to watch Glyn in the moments before Penny arrived. He was so full of nervous anticipation he couldn’t keep still, but as soon as Penny and her Dad appeared in the doorway, he calmed immediately. Absolutely breathtaking in her Mariana Hardwick gown, Penny entered to a live rendition of Pachelbel’s Canon in D by Amati String Quartet. You couldn’t wipe the smile off her or Glyn’s faces from that moment on.

Warren Photography

Penny and Glyn had written down some of the things they love about each other to incorporate into the ceremony. They were little things, such as sharing a bottle of wine on the couch and talking about their day, but these small moments of intimacy speak volumes about what they both value. Taking the time to be with one another, to appreciate one another, to reflect on their relationship and all it has brought them.

Warren Photography

Their friends read two passages on marriage; an excerpt from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin and the wise Apache Blessing before emotions ran high when they got to their vows. It can be nerve-wracking for a couple when they say their vows, but Penny and Glyn weren’t daunted. They made their vows with such sincerity and emotion that nearly all of their family and friends were wiping away tears and photographer extraordinaire John Warren caught a beautiful moment when Glyn’s sisters gave in to their feelings.

Warren Photography

Glyn and Penny emerged from the Chapel into a shower of rose petals before taking a wander in the golden light of the vines with John and the talented crew from C2 Video. (You can watch the video of their day here. Be warned: it is stunning). They then made their way across to the Barn with their family and friends for a party that went well into the night.

Warren Photography

Congratulations, Mr and Mrs J. The way you feel about each other comes across in every single thing you do and it is so clear that at the heart of your relationship is a strong and abiding friendship. It was my absolute honour to be part of your day.
xx Koren

Penny and Glyn, 19 May 2012
Venue: Stones of the Yarra Valley
Bride’s gown: Mariana Hardwick
Photographer: John at Warren Photography. More photos here.
Videographer: C2 Video. See the full video (it is AMAZING) here.
Florist: Blooming Brides
Musicians: Amati String Quartet
Koren Harvey 


Hannah and Leigh

Are you comfortable? Warm? Do you have something to eat at hand? Glass of water, too?


I only ask because once you clap eyes on Hannah and Leigh’s wedding, you won’t be moving for a while. You’ll be like me, immobile and gaping at the gorgeousness of their day.

Lisa Leek Photography

The first word that comes to mind when I think of Hannah and Leigh is bubbly. They’re both infectiously happy people and Hannah’s killer laugh is instantly endearing. You simply can’t be around them without being swept up in their unfailing enthusiasm for every part of life, even the everyday things. It’s beautiful to watch.

The first word that comes to mind when I think of their wedding is bright. Bright smiles, bright personalities and bright, vividly coloured flowers, all under a wide autumn sky.

Lisa Leek Photography

In a fun twist on the tradition in which the groom doesn’t know what the bride will wear, Leigh also kept his outfit secret from Hannah. This resulted in many laughs at our final rehearsal, when there may or may not have been jokes about velour tuxedos and designer trackies!

On the day however, I don’t know that either of them really took in what the other was wearing. Just the way they looked. Radiant. Euphoric. In love.

Lisa Leek Photography

Hannah and Leigh asked their beloved  Mums to do a reading together, called ‘On Your Wedding Day’. The reading turned out to be one of the most emotional moments of the ceremony. Both Mums choked up and with their arms around each other, finished lines for one another when the tears became too much. It was a powerful, personal and loving moment.

We also spoke about the things that bring Hannah and Leigh joy in their life together. Things like spending time with their family and friends, travelling, being outdoors and supporting each other. Most of all though, taking the opportunity to enjoy the little things they do on a daily basis together – talking, hugging and laughing.

Lisa Leek Photography

Before their wedding, I’d advised Hannah and Leigh to rehearse their kiss – after all, it can be daunting kissing each other in front of a hundred cheering, clapping, photograph-taking friends. The photo above was taken just as Leigh informed me that after a fair bit of practice, they were ready for their first kiss as husband and wife. I’m proud to say they did an excellent job of it, too!

Lisa Leek Photography

Lisa Leek Photography

Congratulations, Mr and Mrs P! Your marriage reminded me once more of why I love being a celebrant so much. It’s the honest emotion of real moments between two people in love, and the joy and pride of the people who love them.

Thank you so very much for allowing me to witness and share in your joy. xx Koren

Lisa Leek Photography

Hannah and Leigh, 31 March 2012
Venue: Yarra Ranges Estate, Monbulk
Photos: The extremely talented Lisa Leek of Lisa Leek Photography. You can see more of Hannah and Leigh’s beautiful wedding at Lisa’s blog.
Celebrant: Koren Harvey

Jazzing it up

Earlier this year, we attended the wedding of our friends Elysha and Wil. They married in a religious ceremony at the picturesque Stones of the Yarra Valley on a crisp autumn morning.

Elysha and Wil

Lysh is my little sister’s best friend and having watched her grow from a gorgeous teenager into a beautiful woman, it was particularly poignant to witness her marriage to the equally beautiful Wil.

Both Lysh and Wil are stylish, creative souls and put their own innovative touches on their wedding day.

The stunning chapel at Stones of the Yarra Valley

The chapel was decorated with red and orange floral arrangements to honour Elysha’s Dutch heritage and her late Mum. Friends read blessings and poetry to the couple and Lysh and Wil’s sisters acted as their witnesses. It was an intimate celebration of love and family.

After Wil and Lysh were pronounced husband and wife and prepared to make their exit, the opening bars of Fly Me to the Moon seemed to float down from above.  Wil had organised a jazz band and hidden them in the choir loft as a surprise for his bride. 

As Wil took his new wife for a dance, signs began to pop up around the chapel.

In another surprise for Elysha, Wil and some of his friends had hand-stencilled signs to hoist aloft as they danced their way into their new life together.  It was a perfect moment and resulted in much delighted laughter.

Other signs included 'W loves E' and 'Congrats!'

The newlyweds then made their way out into the sunshine to the strains of jazz standards, where they posed with their wedding party and perhaps the most appropriate sign of all.

What unique touches will you be incorporating into your wedding day?

Elysha and Wil, 1 May 2011
Venue: Stones of the Yarra Valley
Bridal gown: Collette Dinnigan
Bridesmaid gowns: Ted Baker
Flowers: Blooming Brides