Real Wedding – Jess & Al, Collingwood VIC
What do you do when a combination of circumstances mean you have only three weeks to plan your dream day? You be like Jess and Al. These two legends pulled what we can only call, using true 2020 vocab, a perfect pivot – and switched their destination dreams to an urban utopia of love and laughter.
The limited time frame and location rethink meant that Jess and Al had to start their planning from scratch – and also meant a rethink of what the day truly meant for them. They landed on the perfect combination of pared-back style, raw, real emotion and a hefty dose of post-lockdown dance floor fever. And we can tell you; we are all here for it!
Quintessentially Melbourne venue Rupert on Rupert provided a unique, uber cool backdrop, elevated by delicate floral details by Pomp and Splendour in artfully underdone arrangements. A softly stunning cloud of smokebush provided the perfect pinnacle to the styling sensation.
Jess stuck true to her own personal style, choosing a gorgeous Georgia Young Couture jumpsuit for her wedding look. Sleek contemporary lines are softened with statement lace and a floor-length veil falling from Jess’s shoulders. And the best accessory? Jess’s choice of shoes, switched up as the dance floor heated up to the tunes of legendary DJ Aleks from One More Song.
There to capture every detail with true artistry was photographer Brown Paper Parcel. Scroll on for the ultimate in urban cool packed full of genuine feels.
We both met at university studying Osteopathy. However, we were only friends for a number of years. Then, we travelled to Europe where some sparks flew whilst watching many sunsets over the Mediterranean Sea.
Al bent down on one knee at our favourite beach. We walk our dog there as often as we can. That week we’d been there a few times, but I was suffering from an intense lingering hangover. I think it lasted six days, and he had to wait that whole time for grumpy Jess to disappear.
Unfortunately, like many others, Al and my initial wedding plans for 2020 were obliterated by COVID-19. We were supposed to get married in Bali in the April but instead found ourselves sitting on the couch sinking Negronis. With a Bali wedding looking less and less likely as the year rolled on and a family member facing a health condition, we decided we had to just get it done. We had two and half weeks to organise our Melbourne Wedding 2.0. Our photographer Jess was all set to come to Bali with us, but that was all we had arranged.
Having been a part of the Melbourne wedding industry for a good few years, I had a bit of intel to draw on. We ended up booking my favourite Melbourne venue and then some of my favourite vendors.
Working in the industry, I feel like I’ve been gathering inspiration for years. But when it came to the crunch, and we had to organise a wedding in three weeks, all of that flew out the window. I suddenly didn’t care what it looked like. We just wanted high-quality service from experienced professionals and to get married surrounded by family and friends. I’ve worked with most of our vendors before and knew they were the goods.
We had such a short time frame, and the whole year had thrown everything into perspective. We were ready to embrace masks at our wedding, elbow taps instead of hugs and no dance floor, but all restrictions lifted one week before our wedding.
Our ceremony was light-hearted, fun and engaging. I like to think that it reflected us as a couple, and the things Anthony made us promise to each other have become running jokes between the two of us. Al was made to promise he would always acknowledge the freshly changed bed sheets, and I was somehow coerced into promising that I would become a morning person.
I get around in jumpsuits as much as possible. This day was going to be no exception. However, I couldn’t find one I liked until I photographed a sweet wedding where the bride wore a Georgia Young one. I was hooked. I went to Georgia Young and only tried the jumpsuit on.
Walking down that aisle. What sweet, sweet relief.
Meaning of marriage.
Teamwork. Valuing each other’s time (paid, unpaid, self-care), warmth and respect. And always ordering two different Mains to share.
Aisle: Depth Over Distance by Ben Howard.
Recessional: You Make My Dreams (Come True) by Daryl Hall & John Oates.
You can actually organise a full-blown event in under three weeks.
Words of wisdom.
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Covid has taught everyone that, but especially couples who were supposed to get married in 2020. Choose the right professionals so you can leave it up to them and sit back, relax and enjoy the day.
Working in the wedding industry definitely takes the unknown/hype/stress/romance out of a wedding day. That, in combination with the year that was, stripped back the day to a celebration of what was important. A special union between two people surrounded by their family and friends.
Venue choice can play a huge part in how much or how little you spend on styling your day. And we understand, there is so much to consider! Check out our handy guide to help you choose your dream day setting.
JESS & AL’S VENDORS
Ceremony & reception venue: Rupert on Rupert. Mali and Ric at Rupert do what they do well. It’s such a great space that you don’t need to style it if you don’t want to. The food is so tasty, and your glass is never left empty. Having organised the wedding in 2.5 weeks, it was such a relief to know they had the reigns on the night.
Celebrant: Anthony Cribbes. A little bit cheeky and a little bit witty, Anthony created a ceremony that was both entertaining for everyone and so very, very us. Everyone was talking about it on the night and still refer back to it.
Photography: Jess Tremp from Brown Paper Parcel Al and I are still workshopping ideas on which event we can next share with Jess. She’s an artist in the truest form and has created images we will treasure for a lifetime. She is the easiest person to spend a crazy day with and the best dancefloor shredder.
Styling & Decor: Rupert on Rupert
Florist: Pomp and Splendour. There are a lot of amazing florists in Melbourne. But Pomp are one of my favourites! Asha and her team gave me the puff of smoke bush I’d always wanted, but better!
Hair & make-up: Zoe Karlis Zoe had her work cut out for her with me. I don’t wear make-up, and my hair is always up in a topknot. She made me feel beautiful.
The dress & veil: Georgia Young Couture I don’t know how she does it, but each time you set foot into Georgia’s studio, she makes you look and feel like your best self. Al still needs to be convinced that the jumpsuit needs to live in my wardrobe forever.
Shoes: Loeffler Randall
Rings: Bride- Abby Seymour Al designed my engagement ring, and I still have the little drawings that he used to convey his ideas to Abby. I still get excited every time I look at my engagement ring. Groom- Tessa Blazey Tessa created a ring that Al can work in and, most importantly, surf in. She made the process so easy!
Groomsmen’s suits: Various own
Bow ties / ties: Grooms tie- Vintage Pierre Cardin
Catering & bar: Rupert on Rupert
Stationery / Signage: The Mudroom Design Studio. Kate is our go-to for both our businesses. So who else could we trust to get it done in such a short time frame?
Entertainment: One More Song Entertainment Our dancefloor went off. Aleks nailed it.
Honeymoon: We snuck in a honeymoon to Europe in September 2019 before our original wedding date. We are so thankful and grateful that we did. Who knows when we will get back there again.
Accommodation: The girls got ready at Napier Quarter Guesthouse. We felt like kings and queens here. Coffee and pastries delivered to our door, French linen. Melbourne at its damn finest. Do not leave without trying their anchovy toast (in true Melbourne style, it’s not even on their menu!)