Crossing continents for an Ibiza wedding

Guests from all corners of the globe gathered for the Ibiza wedding of Evelyn & Shaun – photographed by Studio by Ana Lui.

With all the stunning countryside, spectacular coastline and striking cityscapes to be found in Australia, it’s hard to imagine why any Antipodean couple would look further than their own backyard when the time comes to get married. But for jet-setting, Sydney-based couple Evelyn and Shaun, a long-term love affair with the white isle meant no other location would live up to their expectations and after they became engaged in 2014, the three-year process of designing and planning cross-continental nuptials began.

“We wanted a destination wedding so that everyone could be on holidays together – so it would be about spending more than just one day together,” says Evelyn of their decision to hold their wedding in Ibiza. “We love the island and knew everyone would be relaxed and have a good time there, so it was an easy option.” Easy is not a word often associated with wedding planning – particularly from the other side of the world – however the couple’s easy going approach and strong sense of identity allowed them to confidently create the weeklong celebration of their dreams.

Needing a set of eyes and ears on the ground in Ibiza, Evelyn and Shaun enlisted Christina Di Giovanna of Le Jour Du Oui as their wedding planner and stylist. Christina used her expert skills and learned – via satellite, so to speak – to interpret their tastes and desires and turn them into reality. The brief from the couple was to find a wedding venue that evoked the feeling of the work of renowned American photographer, Slim Aarons; graceful, glamorous and timeless. With this in mind, Christina suggested a private villa that fit the bill perfectly.

“We fell in love with the views and space,” says Evelyn of Villa Alexia’s crisp white, multi-level design, classic décor, perfectly manicured lawn space and that all-important reflective swimming pool – as Aarons himself would have, had he ever stepped over the threshold. Speaking of photographers, Christina recommended the work of Studio by Ana Lui to the couple, who enlisted their wedding photography services as soon as they’d seen their portfolio. “The lovely Matias and Rosie were amazing,” says Evelyn on reflection of the photographs she will cherish forever.

The ceremony was performed by a friend on the villa lawn “It was quick,” says Evelyn, who felt strongly about her guests making the most of their time in Ibiza. “We didn’t want it to go on for too long!” The villa backdrop was the perfect canvas for Christina to work her styling magic on – she added chill out areas in the garden with cushions and carpets on the lawn and then let the magical views of Ibiza do the rest. The glamorous guests, who’d flown in not just from Australia but from all corners of the globe, did the rest. Slim Aarons – who famously described his unique work as “photographing attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places” would have been proud.

The groom wore a classic Patrick Johnson tailored white suit, and the bride – who is a fashion buyer for a well-known luxury label – wore a beautifully embellished bespoke short dress made by a friend for the ceremony and looked every inch the 60s/70s movie star with long flowing locks (courtesy of in-demand Ibiza stylist Louise Maxwell), with a sheer, vintage inspired overcoat complete with floaty ostrich feather detailing. The look was completed with pom-pom adorned Christian Louboutin shoes, while her natural make-up look was created by her bridesmaid and sister, who wore Stella McCartney.

The provenance of Ibiza provided inspiration for the wedding buffet – which also looked like a work of art unto itself. Olives, local cheeses, jamon with tomato and bread were laid out as starters to nibble on over Champagne, before the grilled meat, squid and fish were served, canapé style – taking away the formalities of a sit-down meal created a fun and sociable atmosphere. Ibiza’s ‘oyster man’ (known from his day circuit at El Chiringuito) Don Ostra circulated amongst the guests, shucking on demand as a novelty – a little touch that was extremely well received. “Our friends loved him!” “We decided not to have a cake,” says Evelyn of their decision to buck another wedding tradition. “We had cheese and champagne instead, as we find that no one ever eats wedding cake – they’re all on the dance floor!”

For the party segment of the event, Evelyn changed into a show-stopping hot pink Gucci gown – keeping the starlet vibes flowing while DJ friends played music all night long. “We’d organised buses to take people back into town later in the evening,” laughs Evelyn. “But no one wanted to leave!” And it didn’t stop there “This wasn’t just about one day. We had a week of friends from all around the world hanging out together and on the wedding day well danced the night away. It was so much fun!” After the extended celebrations in Ibiza, the couple went on to honeymoon in Italy, covering Capri, Amalfi and Puglia, before returning to Australia and already have plans to return to Ibiza in the coming years.

Photography: Studio by Ana Lui
Event planner: Le Jour Du Oui
Dresses: Bespoke and Gucci
Shoes: Christian Louboutin
Hair & make-up: Louise Maxwell
Groom’s attire: Patrick Johnson