Real Wedding – Emily & Arturo, Melbourne VIC
When Emily and Arturo first met, salsa dancing at an underground bar in Colombia, the thought that they would end up planning a wedding whilst locked down in Australia would have been an unbelievable concept!
Fast forward four years to a relationship spanning multiple continents, and that is precisely where these two stunning souls found themselves. Pandemic-planning, dodging ever-changing restrictions and seeking styling supplies online to fit their delightful design aesthetic of fun, colourful and textured.
When the day finally unfolded, it was nothing short of magic. We couldn’t hold back the happy tears scrolling through this absolute treat of a celebration, where the whimsically wonderful styling is a beautiful backdrop to the incredible emotion. Connecting with friends and family from afar over zoom, sharing the laughter and the tears; all perfectly captured by Wild Romantic Photography.
This year may have thrown challenges aplenty, but Emily and Arturo’s breathtaking bash shows the strength of love and connection, and we are so here for it.
We met almost four years ago salsa dancing at an underground bar in the Colombian city of Medellin. Emily was travelling solo around Latin America, and Arturo (from Venezuela) had been living in Medellin for around a year.
It was pretty instant actually; it just felt different from the start! We spent five days together in person, followed immediately by almost a year apart in a long-distance relationship. Since then, we’ve both moved across the world (multiple times!) to live together in Solomon Islands, Uruguay and finally Australia!
An intimate moment at home while we were living in Solomon Islands. No ring, no grand proposal; just the two of us knowing we never wanted to have to say ‘goodbye’ again.
We’d been living in Uruguay for just over a year and were planning to move to Australia when the pandemic struck. We packed up our lives in Montevideo in a few hours and made it home to Australia one day before the border closed to foreigners (i.e. Arturo!).
Our wedding plans changed by the week as COVID-19 restrictions changed daily life for everyone. We’d originally planned to get married at a family farm in country Victoria (we’d even built the tables!) but COVID-19 restrictions meant we were stuck in Melbourne.
Postponing wasn’t actually an option for us, as we had a deadline to get married to ensure Arturo’s visa remained valid… so a backyard wedding it was!
Colour, fun, romance, nature. We wanted the day to feel joyful, a celebration of the massive journey we’d been on just to be together.
Non-traditional, colour, fun, texture. We searched for our outfits online together from the confines of our house mid-pandemic. We were lucky we loved the first dress and suit we ordered!
Standing in the sunshine hearing the vows we’d written for each other.
Meaning of marriage.
Partnership. And getting to share all of life’s moments, from the most glorious to the most uneventful, with your favourite person in the world.
Aisle: Fly Me To The Moon by Imaginary Future
First dance: La Vida Es Un Carnaval by Celia Cruz (salsa!)
Funny stories or near disasters.
Oh, a pandemic is right up there! Shops all closed, last haircut six months ago, no guests allowed and rules changing by the day… no problem!
We were also still in our PJs an hour before the ceremony, running around setting up the Zoom tech! By the end, the near disasters just converted into a whole bunch of funny stories.
How little you actually need to create a beautiful day full of emotion and memories. With everything pared back, there was little more than the two of us and a whole lot of love… at the end of the day, that’s all you need!
Words of wisdom.
Imagine and create it together, whatever that looks like for you.
Keen to see how other couples created micro-wedding magic during pandemic pandemonium? Lachlan and Belinda also had to rework their plans due to COVID-19 restrictions. Check out their stunning celebration here.
EMILY AND ARTURO’S VENDORS
Ceremony venue: Backyard
Celebrant/Officiant: Maria Pilar Aguilera did an amazing job of making our ceremony a personal and bilingual event (English/Spanish), so our guests in South America could feel as much a part of our ceremony as those in Australia.
Photography: Elle Alihos – Wild Romantic Photography. We actually won a competition that gifted us Elle’s amazing talents for the day!
Videography: Not allowed unfortunately! We set up our Canon camera on the other side of the pool and our phones everywhere… Thank god for the Zoom screen recording system because none of them worked!
Florist: Bouquet – Amazing Graze Flowers, Arbor décor and boutonnieres – Emily
Hair and make-up: Us
The dress: Needle & Thread
Shoes: Jo Mercer
Rings: Sarah & Sebastian
Bow ties: Arturo’s bow tie – Peggy and Finn. Dad’s bow tie – sewed by Emily from Nonna’s vintage scarf.
Catering: Emily’s Mum and Dad
Bar: Emily’s Dad
Favours: 140 cannoli and profiteroles from our ‘cake’ shared between five people
Cake: A cannoli and profiterole tower created by Emily’s Dad (a retired restaurateur/chef!)
Stationery: Arturo created an animation of our story for our Zoom guests (our invitations were also animations!)
Transport: Everything was in walking distance!
Décor: Us. Emily’s dad built the wooden arbour, and Emily did the Monstera leaf arbour decorations. We sourced the rug from my friend’s mum’s house after our click-and-collect didn’t work out!
Honeymoon: Picnics within our 5km restricted zone every day for a week!