Hi I’m Rob, That’s me in the pic. The silent part to Alice in Weddingland, though I take no credit for the work of Zarn. Why am I writing to you today?
Why has Zarn allowed my fingers to touch the keyboard of her beautiful Blog? I’d like to tell you a story. A story of woe, tragedy, triumph and inspiration. A story that I think connects to most of us. A story that’s also about marriage. (Zarn Doesn’t know I’m writing this – she thinks it’s about something else).
Let me start a little down the track
Four years ago our daughter graced our lives with her birth. As most parents, the learning and dedication to raising a child never meets your expectations or perceived demands.
Zarn, like many of her friends she’s also talked to couldn’t understand why this ‘mothering instinct’ this supposedly natural ability to know what to do, didn’t kick in.
(in all fairness, I think Zarn is far more a ‘natural’ than she leads herself to think)
It was during these times of raising our daughter that Zarn had lost who she was, lost the years of life as being a single person . No-one and nothing can prepare you for the dramatic change a child will bring. The dramatic changes you don’t have time to prepare for because you don’t know what’s needed. The consistent demands of a child that is learning what to do, how to do it, who to be.
A Tragedy of Loss
Zarn had suddenly lost her mother while in her twenties and thus didn’t have the support that would come from her. Her sisters were 10,000 miles away in Aus and a few friends who were also struggling with their new-borns.
She took it upon herself to read, try things out and learn how to parent, how to mother how to do the best she possibly could. She learnt very quickly because it was important to know, understand and change. She had a child, our child.
She quickly became adept at being a parent and understanding the subtle needs of our daughter until one day very early in our daughters life, we were woken by the sound of choking next to our bed.
The lights switched on, hands reached into the cot to pull our daughter out. She was starting to turn blue and go limp. I ran to the phone and dialled emergency services. Meanwhile something from inside let Zarn do what she needed to do. Within a few seconds that seemed like a lifetime, our daughter started to breathe again and came back to colour.
We spent the night in hospital while they monitored her for safety. In the morning, unable to find anything wrong we were allowed to go home.
It was this abject terror of fear of loss that made Zarn want to learn and find out how to parent in many different ways.
But it took it’s toll. She lost who she was, though she took her rightful place as a mother.
But didn’t know who she was or what to do about it and then…
A Change to Heart
After three and half years –
Her and her close friend Kate, looked at starting a business in the Wedding Industry. Zarn and Kate were both two talented people at organizing and so looked at starting a Wedding Planning business, using their intimate knowledge and skills of organization.
Having organized my Parents Golden Wedding Anniversary with 100 guests it ran like a smoothly oiled wedding. Stunning Hotel Venue, Wedding Cake, Photo’s, Video, Speeches fancy this and that etc. It was time to put her skills to work.
But wedding planning didn’t quite match.
She loved finding the unusual, the unique, the quirky the creative. And so Alice in Weddingland the blog was born.
Me? I thought it would be a lovely fanciful pastime and blog where she could lay her hat and enjoy her writings.
I was to eat my hat!
I think neither of us new what would happen or where it would lead.
I had my corporate clients and full time training business. I’d spent years helping people at the other end of life, the down, the sad, depressed and in need of help as well as my experience in developing billion dollar companies around the world.
But it was to be this passion, this change, this intimate knowledge of nurturing that Zarn had learnt as a mother, that she used in searching for and finding the most wonderful, creative, artistic stunning craftsmanship that have graced the pages of this site – To showcase and let Brides-to-be find unique ideas and inspiration for their wedding.
It’s a delightful, quirky blog that makes you feel like weddings are actually fun and stress free things that take place in another more fairytale world.
Zania somehow manages to go beyond the sea of ivory foam that we see in bridal stores and instead find the exotic and beautiful. It is a gentle blog that is always fun to read even if you are not looking at having a wedding. It is full of beautiful images that capture the textures and shades of the magic of a wedding day in a very intimate way.
Alice in Weddingland also came to be where she found herself too.
Eight months on in what seems like a blurr, her blog has grown into a business. A business which in truth had no expectations of growth other than one for 2-3 years down the line.
With dedication and inspiration she sought out the different, unique, quality, hard to find suppliers. Poured hours and hours of painstaking work to create a magical place. Through perseverance and passion she prevailed against the negative thoughts of people and didn’t give up. Her consistency to give excellence is in my opinion is truly outstanding – because she cares and –
“I’m proud to be her husband”
It’s this passion for other’s, for wanting to put other’s before herself that I believe she has made it truly her own. With no expectations of return, only wanting to help and show people they can transcend the barriers of tradition and break free to have a truly beautiful day and capture those moments that will be stories to their children, does she indeed wish for Brides and Grooms to have a day of magic.
And so I’ve pulled my business back ’cause ‘me’? I wasn’t interested in the fancy-pancy, overly white pinky foamy weddings; or at least Weddings in general.
— At least not until I started see all the stunning work of the people who’d been featured on here.
It wasn’t until we went to the National Wedding Show that I caught a glimpse of something that I hadn’t seen for a long time.
This is a Happy Industry – there are people like you who are about to go on a magical journey of love and togetherness. Who are about to unite and bring together your love and passion as one.
This truly is a magical place to be.
How could one not, not want to be in here too?
A New Hope
We started to put our heads together and find out how else we could help and showcase the brilliant talent out there. How else could we give a platform for the truly talented people in this industry.
I have my years of corporate business building experience and intimate knowledge of internet marketing that I’ve brought to not only my business but also my clients.
How could we use this to help those out there that find it difficult to know what to do, where to go, who to see, how to be found.
And so Zarn’s second adventure of Alice in Weddingland was to bring together a Directory called the Unique Wedding Directory a single place that could become the hub of this wonderful magical industry. A place where artisans, venues and photographers could showcase their work and be found amongst the sea of tradition.
For both Zarn and I, business is a marriage, a marriage where people share a common interest, passion, love to inspire and be inspired.
For a marriage also is like a business, it takes care and nurturing to let it grow and flourish.
And so we’ve finished our honeymoon and are now settling into creating a new home.
A home I invite you to enter and view the lovely work already inside…and be a part of the next chapter too.
And the timing seems to be just right as Zarn has been asked to feature-write in the new UniqueBridesMagazine to land in High Street shops in the US & UK on the 26th April as well as be available online.
Of course, it’s early days and still in its infancy and will grow too over the months and years. So with our experience of nurturing, care and passion we want to help both you the bride find the delightful wonderful artisans that will help make your day the magic and tale you want, as well as you the artisan a place where you can be found too.
And like a child – it won’t get left alone to fend for itself.
I am honoured to be part of Zarn’s life and this her passion. For it will always be hers, I’m just the guy who knows how to help businesses grow.
And Zarn found who she is. Who she always was and will be.
“Live Your Passion!”
And a big thank from me also to all and everyone who has been here and supported the work she does and the talent she finds.
Have a peak at her new venture and see the wonderfully talented people who are also part of this story and have their own stories to share. With whom will hopefully be part of your story too. Your Magical Day in Weddingland.
Please be upstanding to…Zarn
P.S. Zarn doesn’t know I’ve written this, she’s out shopping (this is our little secret!)
P.P.S. Zarn can sing, no really she can – this is a little ditty we put together a while ago. She’ll kill me when she finds out! (turn up the volume)
I’ve never followed trends as I disliked being just one of the crowd so my love for things that are different, unusual, beautiful and stylistic that I’d had all my life transformed into Alice in Weddingland.