My blogging partner in crime, Mrs Woog and I worked a smokey eye for the occasion

Keeping it Real: the surprise spring wedding outfit

Nikki Parkinson Everyday Style, Fashion 47 Comments

Lately I seem to bring on some unseasonal weather each time I travel for events and this weekend proved no different.

When the “save the date” landed in my inbox two months ago, declaring the dress code as summer frocks, I immediately had visions of a balmy November night … and a kaftan.

As you do … when said event is to be held in the Pavilion on Australia’s most famous beach.

So there I was, in outfit planning mode with such weather in mind. Only problem being Sydney didn’t get my memo.

It did on the fine weather front, it was just a little bit cooler than what I had envisioned in my head.

At Bondi with Mr Styling You. Handy to have around on a cool night when you're pretending it's summer.

At Bondi with Mr Styling You. Handy to have around on a cool, windy night when you’re pretending it’s summer.

What’s a girl to do?

Suck it up, that’s what.

I decided I’d still kaftan it up and just throw in a cotton cashmere wrap to keep me warm for the trip home that may or may not have included a stop for cheeseburgers. Which again provided more proof that this was irregular Friday night activity.

About the spring wedding outfit

I’m a big believer in regularly bringing out to play those frocks or clothes that make you feel fabulous. Especially for a special event.

Keeping it Real: the surprise spring wedding outfit | Sacha Drake kaftan | Zoe Kratzmann wedges

This silk Sacha Drake kaftan is one of those garments.  I bought it a year ago, having bought another in a similar style the summer before. It’s floaty and colourful and all kinds of wonderful to wear.

For its first outing this summer I teamed it with the Zoe Kratzmann pine lime wedges that have already been on high rotation this season. I love the colour, the tassels and the heel height that lets me stand all day (or all night) in them without needing to switch to flats.

With the kaftan and the wedges playing centre court in this outfit, I kept the accessories to a minimum … Sophie Kyron earrings from three years ago plus a Samantha Wills ring from last year.

My blogging partner in crime, Mrs Woog and I worked a smokey eye for the occasion

My blogging partner in crime, Mrs Woog and I worked a smokey eye for the occasion.

About the hair

I’m blessed that one of my close girlfriends also owns a hair salon. She’s good. She gets my hair and knows most of my wardrobe.

We’ve been doing a lot of steam pod straightening of late so in the interests of keeping things fresh, she changed it up.

The result? Loose waves styled into multi braids with a messy but “done” finish.

When I posted this photo montage on Instagram, one follower said I looked about 30. Apart from posting her a fat cheque for her kind words, I also posed the question, “Are braids the new Botox?”

I think yes 😉

Braids are the new Botox? (Hair by Suite Three)

Braids are the new Botox? (Hair that travels by Suite Three)

About the nails

Yes, my special occasion outfit planning does involved added extras.

Nothing like a fresh mani and pedi to make a girl feel just that bit more special.

On the fingers: CND Shellac in Tropix. This coral colour is a summer fave of mine and my first application of the season.

On the toes: Essie Aruba Blue. Love the electric blue as a contrast to so many of my fave summer clothes colours.

Toes: Essie Aruba Blue | Fingers: CND Shellac Tropix

About the tan

Now, normally I would have booked in for a spray tan. Having my legs so exposed early in the season would otherwise mean a neon display.

But, I’ve been using the Eco Tan Winter Skin gradual tan moisturiser I talked about here for the last two weeks and I’m completely in love with its natural honey tone.

About this event

Way back in August when we were enjoying lunch at Balthazar, our agent, the Remarkables’ gorgeous and talented Lorraine Murphy showed us a photo on her phone of the white Herve Leger bandage dress she had just bought for a song and would be wearing to her wedding. Her SURPRISE wedding.

Through my jetlagged haze I took this piece of info on board and immediately decided Mr Styling You and I would definitely be there.

It would be a chance to swap a Friday night on the couch for a party with some of my closest blogging friends … and their husbands, whom Edenland’s Eden Riley’s husband had declared, The Reliables.

So there we were on this cool and breezy night … a few of us in the know. The rest of the guests thinking they were there to celebrate two 30th birthdays.

As the cakes (yes, there were four!) were brought out and “birthday” speeches were made, Lorraine and Wade announced to their friends that they had tied the knot that afternoon on the door step of a house where they’d first met.

The looks on their friends’ faces? Yes, that credit card company could have used the reaction in their next ad campaign.

And in true blogger agent style, Lorraine had enlisted Beth from BabyMac to unleash her inner Beverley and do the flowers. And Sarah from A Beach Cottage turned wedding photographer for the day.

How bloody happy and radiant does she look?

A newly wed Lorraine Murphy

A newly wed Lorraine Murphy

Have you been to a spring wedding this season? Got a summer wedding coming up? If you’ve got a question about what to wear, leave it below.

  • All I can say is why didn’t you have a “warm” spring outfit and a “cool” spring outfit ready to go dependant on the weather? Instead you went cold.

    • I was actually fine, thanks! It was only cold going to the cab home and I had a wrap for that.

  • Best story ever! Love this so, so, so much I’m tearing up! Nikki you look absolutely gorgeous in that kaftan and I adore the hair. Mrs Woog looks hot stuff, she’s a minx that one! Love that the husbands of The Remarkables are The Reliables. Adore Lorraine’s glowy beautiful happiness. Love it all! Love! Love! Love!

  • My boss is getting married in February, Nikki. I’ve seen photos of previous weddings in her family and circle. Apparently, it is de rigueur to wear a fancy wedding outfit to the church (think dress, jacket, hat) and then a fancy wedding outfit to the reception (think evening dress). Goodness – I might be asking for some help from my style guru!

    • Have they put a dress code on the invite? Or are you yet to receive them? At least you’ve got a fabulous hat collection!!

  • Gorgeous! Photos by Sarah Beach Cottage and flowers by Pensive Beverley, and gorgeous hilarious guests like the happy pics that kept popping up on Instagram all day – how lovely! Love the Reliables too – they looked very suave!

  • B

    Oh. How lovely! Looks like you had a hoot!

  • posie blogs Jennie McClelland

    It was the sweetest wedding surprise i’ve ever seen (on Instagram) what a great idea, so personal & lovely. Lorraine is gorgeous, what a fun event. Seems another one has fallen for a soldier (or former soldier) i totally understand, love Posie

    • Love how instagram works best like that, letting the mystery unravel via images xx

  • Emily @ The Beetle Shack

    oh that Lorainne, so beautiful. And you in that Kaftan Nikki, total perfection.

    I watched the event unfold with complete delight on my insta feed!

    xo em

    • We loved that part of it too … then my IG adventure continued in your ‘hood! What a gorgeous part of the world x

  • Julie

    I loved reading this post full of lovely surprises – yes the bride looks absolutely radiant and you looked fab too Nikki – great hair, gorgeous dress, and go the wedges! xx

  • Girly Thirties

    I did that earlier this year in my best friend contacted me a week before he tied the knot and let me know it would be “worth my while” to come to Melbourne for the weekend … so flew down for 36 hours and attended my friends surprise reception … and love the hair do ! Braids are the new pink !

  • valeriekhoo

    Wow awesome hair! I don’t think my hair could ever do that!

  • hereiamloulou

    What a lovely post Nikki.
    Your “word-smithing” led me on the most beautiful journey.
    Gorgeous picture of you and Mr S.Y.
    I adored your hair like that with the side fringe – I did like it on IG the day you posted.
    I’m with you re the Kaftan: if I could live in something forever it would be one of those and give me salt water any day.

    have a lovely day Nikki

    x Loulou

  • Love the hairstyle! I have never tried anything different braidwise with my hair.

  • Wow I LOVE that dress on you. It’s so full of colour. Great choice.

  • Absolutely radiant! Just love your hair Nikki, thinking a style similar to my own wedding next year!

    • Oh it would be a perfect wedding style – I love the combination of loose and structure.

  • Gorgeous all round! Exciting news

  • Your hair looked absolutely exquisite! As did your entire ensemble. (It was actually colder in Sydney than the Blue Mountains on Friday, which is saying something!)

    Lorraine is just stunning, as per usual. SO lovely to meet Mr SY, he is gorgeous!


    • Ah Eden, it was such a gorgeous night and my husband has not stopped talking about Dave’s bent needle story! x

  • Lisa Mckenzie

    No spring weddings for me but what a beautiful bride and what a lovely idea,having a surprise wedding….Gold,and to have Beth do the Flowers ,they were gorgeous too,I saw them on IG beautiful roses,and Sarah to do the photos another great idea ,the pics are stunning I have seen a few on facebook.
    You Nikki look amazing ,I would live in kaftans all summer too ,with a maxi in between to mix it up a bit,I love silk I think it is my favourite fabric and the colours in your dress are beautiful,I always feel etheral and pretty in silk and I heart those shoes too,you do look very young in these photos and if braids are the new botox ,I am gettng me some,you have just given me a brilliant Idea,I have curly hair which I straighten when I wash it so I might try a braid on it when I let it dry curly,might as well have a go and then I can look like I have been to the salon and younger too?maaybe ,maybe not, it would be great style for the hot weather we have coming.Love your pics from the weekend pretty lady,Thank-You for sharing 🙂

    • Sounds like you need to give that braiding while your hair is curly a go Lisa!

      • Lisa Mckenzie

        Yes I do and I will 🙂

  • It sounds like an amazing day! You look gorgeous and the bride looks amazing too. Rachel x

  • Something Gorgeous

    Your hair is a stand out. Love it xT

  • Nashuagirl

    This hair is my most favourite thing out of everything I’ve read on your blog! Good hair can do wonders for any outfit and this do compliments everything perfectly. Wish she was my friend 🙂 Congrats to Lorraine and thank you for sharing.

    • I know, I’m very lucky – and it was a great style for getting done here at home and still being great for that night after a flight to Sydney.

  • Melinda @ Shop Me Chic

    Oh I love the idea of a surprise wedding!

    Your hair looks amazing Nikki (as does that kaftan!) x

  • workingwomenaustralia

    I loved seeing this surprise unfold. She looks simply radiant. Your hair really looked amazing Nikki, I think I’ll be giving braids a go!

    • Thanks Kim … I should really learn how to do it myself but too easy to book in 🙂

  • fantastic! What a treat to be a part of that lovely celebration!