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Exclusive: Shelly's surprise beach wedding!

Monday, November 23, 2009

The effervescent Domestic Blitz star tells Glen Williams she has at last found real domestic bliss – marrying her best friend in a secret seaside wedding.

They dreamed it would be the perfect day, low key, but brilliant – and it was.

Shelley Craft and Christian Sergiacomi, two soul mates exchanging marriage vows on the shores of their “most special place in the world”, Belongil Beach at Byron Bay.

Beside the turquoise water, a stunning Shelley walked towards the man who has turned her life around.

Christian, 32 – a passionate Australian/Italian freelance cameraman and former professional Rugby player with Italy’s Benetton Rugby Club – admits to seeing his approaching bride only through a blur of happy tears.

Shelley, 33, did her own hair and make-up, and chose her favourite flowers to decorate the beautiful holiday house – their “special place” – where the wedding was held.

There were pink and white peonies, lisianthus and freesias, their heady fragrance mixing with the saltiness of the sea breeze. And as she made her way through the aisle of guests, all waving festive “twirlers” (aqua ribbons on sticks, made by Shelley), the moment wasn’t lost on anyone.

“I’m the happiest girl in the world,” Shelley told Woman’s Day. “And the luckiest in so many ways. To have found love again, I just wish everyone could do what I’ve just done, to be able to fall in love with then marry your best friend.”

Indeed, Shelley’s “perfect day” was something she could not have envisioned two years ago. Then, she endured the heartbreaking end of her 14-year union, and eight-year marriage, to marketing man Brett De Billinghurst Craft.

“It was a lovely marriage but a difficult break-up,” a gracious Shelley says, not wanting to cast shadows across her new-found joy.

And Christian had also experienced his own long-term relationship painfully ending in 2004. He and Shelley would begin their friendship when travelling the world together on The Great Outdoors in 2007.

“We both started at Channel Seven in Brisbane at the same time in 1994,” Christian says. “I saw Shelley, but she didn’t see me. It was our first year out of high school. Then she moved to Sydney.”

“We’d been in the same year at school, separate schools in the same street, we later found out we had a lot of mutual friends and a lot of mutual stories,” says Shelley, tenderly leaning into her new hubby.

They’d been working together for about five years on The Great Outdoors, and had become good friends and confidants, when love slowly came calling.

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