Sarah Whitney Oxford and Luke John Studd, both of Australia, were married June 9, 2017, at The Farm, Overlook Estate, Banner Elk. Clayton Oxford, brother of the bride, officiated at the 5:30 p.m. ceremony. Reader was John Oxford, brother of the bride. Wedding music was provided by the Summit string quartet, directed by band administrator, Steve Holman of Purlear.

The bride is the daughter of Cliff and Sharon Oxford of Faculty Drive, Winston-Salem. She is a graduate of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn.; Bradford University in Bradford, England, where she was a Rotary Peace Fellow; and Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia. The bride is employed by Victoria University.

The groom is the son of John and Margaret Studd of Ballarat, Victoria, Australia. He is a graduate of Saint Patrick’s Boys College in Ballarat, Victoria and Deakin University in Geelong, Victoria. The groom is employed by the Eastern Regional Medical Association.

The bride was escorted by her father, Cliff Oxford. She wore a designer gown featuring a straight silhouette, with heart-shaped, ivory embroidery lace over a tea-colored underlining. The bride carried a bouquet of lilies and wild flowers.

Bridal attendants included the bride’s maternal grandmother, Etta Idol of North Wilkesboro, who served as lead flower girl. Mrs. Idol wore the dress she had worn as mother of the bride for her daughter’s wedding 44 years ago. Assistant flower girls were the bride’s nieces, Maggie Oxford of Tupelo, Miss., Georgiana Oxford and Marina Oxford of Purlear.

Ring bearer was the bride’s nephew, Bert Oxford of Tupelo, Miss.

Michael McBean of Melbourne, Australia served as best man.

Following a wedding trip to Asheville and the surrounding area, the couple will reside in Torquay, Victoria, Australia.


The reception was a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. The dinner was an introduction of the American tradition to the Australian family and guests.

Chef for the meal was Lila Magbee of St. Simons, Ga. Native mountain flowers with Australian and American flags adorned the tables.

Two cakes were featured for the wedding. A caramel kangaroo cake was created by Lila Magbee to honor the groom and his country. For the bride, cake filled with fresh fruits and cream was created by the Eat Crow Cafe in Banner Elk. The cake was topped with a painted likeness of the bride and groom in their surfing clothes.

Rehearsal dinner

The rehearsal dinner was a low country boil at the Pavilion at The Farm in Banner Elk.

Featured musicians were the Local Boys, directed by Aaron Soots of Wilkes County, with guest banjo player, Clayton Oxford, brother of the bride.

The rehearsal combined wedding festivities with the 95th birthday of Etta Idol, the bride’s maternal grandmother. Mrs. Idol also performed a special song with the band.

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