Real Wedding – Matthew & Vanessa, Abbotsford VIC
Real Wedding – Matthew & Vanessa, Abbotsford VIC
Real Wedding – Matthew & Vanessa, Abbotsford VIC
Real Wedding – Matthew & Vanessa, Abbotsford VIC

Real Wedding – Matthew & Vanessa, Abbotsford VIC


Choosing to anchor her theming choices in her Italian cultural heritage meant that Vanessa and Matthew’s wedding day was a sweet visual wonder. Vintage Italian and a sense of a simpler time underpinned each divine detail, and the result was a day filled with uncomplicated emotion and absolute fun.

Setting the tone were clouds of florals in a colour palette of summer wildflower tones – sweet lemon, soft cornflower blue and pops of bright watermelon. An accordionist, vintage-style cakes and a classic red fiat provided truly authentic touches. Against the classically understated beauty of Abbotsford Convent, the guests were transported to an Italian village of years passed.

For Vanessa, Sophia Loren was the perfect muse, and we think she captured the natural beauty of this goddess to perfection! Her gorgeous Oglia-Loro Couture gown was only outdone by her megawatt smile.

Every breathtaking emotion of this stunning celebration was captured by photographers I Got You Babe. Scroll on for a unique visual treat.

The meeting.

Technically we met ten years ago; our friends Adam and Sarah were dating and they tried to set us up. Fast forward to NYE 2017, these same friends were now married and hosted a NYE dinner. This time they were successful in playing cupid – we shared a NYE kiss and my NYE wish to fall in love with a tall, dark and handsome man was well on the way. Our friends double dated with us for the first two months.


The ‘one’.

Matt said he knew straight away that NYE. He was nervous and couldn’t string words together (he had just gotten out of a long term relationship) but felt happy and hopeful in my company.

I knew six months in when he wasn’t scared off by my parents’ 100 questions.


The proposal.

We went to Levantine Hill winery for lunch and after a few bottles, he wanted to walk off the wines. He offered to take my picture for the “gram” in front of an artwork structure which was an infinity symbol, once I turned around for my picture he was on one knee. After that, we caught a helicopter into the city where our bags were at Crown Towers. We got ready for dinner and all our immediate family were waiting to surprise us; it was the best day!


Planning process.

I took two weeks off work before the day. I couldn’t risk getting COVID and I wanted to feel rested and relaxed. I am so happy I had that time to do all those little jobs leading into the day, even if it was just emailing suppliers and doing everything at my own pace.


Style inspiration. 

My style was vintage Italian. The older I get the more I appreciate my background culture and the simpler times our grandparents and parents lived in. Sophia Loren was my style muse; natural, beautiful and sexy- nothing too overdone and over the top but still with lots of Italian “nods” that we thought a lot of family and friends would appreciate.

I found all my suppliers through wedding blogs and Instagram. I was able to look through their work and page and know they would be able to understand the style I was trying to achieve.


The ceremony.

Our ceremony was in a chapel, it was important for my parents and for me that we got married by a priest. It was a beautiful moment walking up the aisle with my Dad and seeing Matt’s face for the first time, I was surprised I kept it together. I felt happy that everyone came to our wedding during a pandemic and I was marrying Matt, it really was a surreal moment in my life.


The outfit. 

I was blessed that my florist and good friend Kim from Melbourne Flower School knew Sam from Oglia-Loro Couture. I booked my wedding venue the moment we came out of lockdown end of October 2021. There was a backlog of brides so it was difficult to get an appointment and a dress in four months, but Sam squeezed me in and my dress was made in two months!


Favourite moments.

Matt’s speech, not a dry eye in the room and I honestly never knew how important I was to him when we first met and how much his life changed for the better. Although he had told me, it hits differently in front of all your family and friends on your wedding day.


Meaning of marriage.

Sharing a life together, making memories and supporting each other.


Wedding soundtrack.

Aisle song: Sea of love by Cat Power- Although I got told by a few people that they didn’t like this one, I was sure this was the song I wanted and I don’t think I’ll ever not love it!

Reception entry: Music sounds better with you by Stardust

First Dance: Just in Time by Dean Martin – Matt picked this one and I love it because it’s not a usual song choice for a first dance but it holds meaning for him and I love it more for it!


Funny stories or near disasters.

Apart from the world falling apart, it just made me more grateful that we were able to have our day and everyone came to celebrate. I didn’t feel stressed, I just had an overwhelming amount of happiness. Nothing seemed too hard or near to being a disaster as I just felt so lucky.


Planning surprises.

Not really, I was time poor so I didn’t dwell on too many decisions and I had amazing vendors so I had full confidence that I was in safe hands


Words of wisdom.

Don’t ask for too many opinions with the planning, be confident with what you want. If you’re unsure, move on to something else and pick it back up later, don’t waste time obsessing over one thing. More often than not you’ll change your mind many times if you think too hard about one thing.



For another take on Italian glam, check out this stunning styled shoot – contemporary elegance, chic flair and intimate moments, set against the backdrop of a Tuscan villa.



Ceremony venue: Good Sheppard Chapel

Reception venue: Abbotsford Convent

Officiant: Father Martin Tanti

Photography: I got you babe – captured authentic moments of the day and I will forever be grateful to have these beautiful memories.

Styling: Studio Nard & Melbourne Flower School – A massive shout out to @studio_nard and @melbourneflowerschool two vendors who I spoke to on the daily in the lead up to our day. They understood the brief and they executed it. I couldn’t have achieved the vibe I wanted without them.

Florist: Melbourne Flower School

Hair: Caitlin Wilson Hair

Make-up: Makeup with Pim

The dress & veil: Oglia-Loro Couture

Shoes: Dune London

Rings: Top Image

Bridesmaid’s dresses: Norma Kamali

Suits: YSG Tailors

Bow ties / ties: YSG Tailors

Catering & Bar: Peter Rowland

Favours: Studio Nard (jacket of playing cards)

Cake / Cake topper: Miss Trixie drinks tea & Ciros Cakes

Stationery / Signage: Studio Nard & Draw Trip

Entertainment: DJ Ric & Accordionist- Phil

Transport: Red fiat (family friends)

Décor: Studio Nard & Melbourne Flower School

Honeymoon: Noosa

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