Real Wedding – Natalie & Anthony, Collingwood VIC
Real Wedding – Natalie & Anthony, Collingwood VIC
Real Wedding – Natalie & Anthony, Collingwood VIC

Real Wedding – Natalie & Anthony, Collingwood VIC

 

After becoming engaged during what felt like Melbourne’s 62878th lockdown, Natalie and Anthony were thrown into the chaos of planning a COVID wedding, never quite knowing what was around the corner.

However, these two took it all in their stride and set about creating a stunning celebration that was effortlessly simple, all about love and heartily embraced their no-fuss personalities.

Being a fashion designer, Natalie encountered a little more difficulty than she expected when choosing a gown, finding a lot of options were far too ‘brid-ey’ for what she was after. So, she decided to design her own, and, harnessing her creative talents and drawing on inspiration from her personal style and aesthetic was indeed a winning formula – she looked sublime.

Their ceremony was kept simple yet personal, sharing vows they’d written themselves and some emotion-charged tears as they stood before their nearest and dearest declaring their love for one another – in what would become their favourite moment of their day.

Hitting the streets of Collingwood for incredible photos taken by our favourite lens legend Motta Weddings, they then joined their loved ones for a modern but warm celebration that lasted well into the night. Scroll on for this sensational celebration.

 

 

The meeting.

We had met once or twice through mutual friends back in 2009/10 I’d say, but we were both in relationships. We then connected again as most people do, on Tinder, about four years later and it fizzled out pretty quickly over texts and we never ended up meeting for a date. By chance we matched again about a year later and this time it stuck. We went out on a very brief first date with no real sparks (we were both hungover and not really in the mood) but I insisted we go on a second date later in the week, mostly because I wanted to go to a cute restaurant and the rest, they say, is history.

 

The ‘one’.

Natalie: For me, I think it was pretty early on, a few months in perhaps? Something was different about this guy, he was confident and mature and not like anyone I had previous dated, and we just clicked so well. Although I didn’t anticipate I would one day be his wife, I certainly could see myself with him long term at that stage.

Anthony: Same for me I think, at least within the first six months things felt natural and permanent and that’s when I started contemplating ‘this is someone I could marry one day’. Ironically it took me another five years or so to actually pop the question.

 

The proposal.

It was during our 62878th lockdown and my birthday was coming up so we ordered a nice date night dinner from Providoor and Anthony insisted on sorting out a special birthday cake for me (this was my second lockdown birthday). He had arranged a giant cannoli filled with tiny cannoli from my favourite place, Cannoli Bar in Avondale Heights, and on it was a plaque that read ‘Marry Me Natalie’. I was not expecting it at all (I think I swore a couple of times haha) and by the time I realised what was happening, he handed me a stunning ring.

 

The process.

Chaos. I’m usually an organised person and love to be prepared but trying to plan a wedding during a pandemic with Covid lockdowns when you have no idea how to plan a wedding was truly a nightmare. For me, the process was stressful and I rarely had time to enjoy the little things but seeing it all come together in the end makes me feel like we did something right.

We originally intended on getting married in October last year but as it looked like that wasn’t going to happen for us due to lockdowns, we reacted early (August I think it was) and changed our date to end of January, anticipating we would have more freedoms and be able to celebrate the way we wanted to.

 

Style inspiration.

I always knew I wanted a simple and intimate affair and Anthony wanted whatever I wanted, haha. I come from a traditional Italian family and there has always been a bit of expectation when it comes to weddings but we preferred to go in a different direction with ours. We wanted the event to feel like us and we are no-fuss people. The aim was for the ceremony to be simple but personal and the space we chose for the reception should be modern but warm and inclusive, full of character but still effortlessly simple.

 

Sourcing inspiration.

In the beginning I had no idea where to start with the wedding planning, so my process began with advice and recommendations from friends and family and from there, it was a combination of researching suppliers and browsing their work and completely random visual searches on Instagram and Pinterest. Styled shoots and editorials, were a huge inspiration for me to get a complete image of how it would all come together on the day. As a visual person, I found it difficult to envision the big picture without putting all the elements together myself, so I had several boards with collaged images and even photoshopped my flower arrangements to be able to visualize what it would look like alongside everything else to see if it worked. Maybe that’s a bit much but it’s how my brain works.

 

The ceremony.

Our ceremony was short and sweet but it was perfect for us. My mum walked me down the aisle (something she’s been looking forward to probably since I was born) and for Anthony, watching me come through the giant glass doors to the song he picked, was really special. His nonna has also been quite unwell for over a year now and it looked like she may not be able to attend, but she was sitting in the front row looking beautiful and watching her first grandson get married. We wrote our own vows, which was not the easiest task for Anthony (he’s more of a gestures guy) and hearing him read them to me in front of all our loved ones was truly special.

 

The look.

Anthony: I already had a classic black Hugo Boss suit, I had intended on wearing for the day, which I actually hadn’t worn on since 2018 (pre-covid kilos) so it was a bit dicey to not have tried it on until the week before, but I went with it. To dress it up and make it a bit more formal, I purchased a white tuxedo shirt, bow tie, and cufflinks also from Hugo Boss. Not much to it really.

Natalie: I had a lot of trouble deciding on what I wanted to wear on the day, which is ironic because I’m a fashion designer. I tried things on in boutiques and found a lot of options online and on Pinterest but everything was too ‘bridey’ for me. I knew I wanted something a little different. I decided to draw on my own style and aesthetic and I ended up designing something I would be comfortable wearing to any event that wasn’t my own wedding and that was the winning formula for me. I went with an off-white heavy satin back crepe fabric and I had it made by an incredibly experienced and talented local dressmaker and I was so happy with the finished gown, the boning and the hook and eye feature and split down the centre just suited my style.

 

Favourite moments.

Anthony: Seeing Nat walking down the aisle was pretty special, I’m not really an emotional person but for a brief second there, I felt the tear ducts fill with water ever so slightly. Another good moment was the best man’s speech – it was a great combination of anacdotes, wise cracks and sweet words for both of us.

Natalie: I think my favourite moment was walking down the aisle and seeing my best friends bawling their eyes out. I actually couldn’t look Anthony in the eye because I thought I would break down myself but then making eye contact with my best girls just threw me off anyway! I’d also say my mum’s speech was really cute.

 

Meaning of marriage.

For both of us, it’s just about mutual respect, understanding, sharing our experiences and lives with the person we love most in the world, and making sure that person can tolerate all your bad habits!

 

Wedding soundtrack.

Aisle: Childish Gambino cover of Tamia – So Into You (Like a Version)

Signing of the registry: Stuck with U by Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber 

Exit song: The Best by Tina Turner 

First Dance: These Arms Of Mine of Otis Redding

 

Funny stories (or near disasters).

Anthony’s brand new tuxedo shirt was almost completely ruined by the dry cleaner the day before (the poor guy sat down the back of the store next to the machinery waiting for his shirt to be fixed, very Seinfeld-esque). The music cut out during our first dance for about 20 seconds or so and one of my besties stepped in and continued singing the song while we shuffled around in silence – it was pretty funny.

 

Planning surprises.

Most of the time I thought I was done planning and then someone would ask me a question about this or that and I realised I hadn’t even considered that. I had no idea how many working parts go into making the day run smoothly.

 

Words of wisdom.

Anthony says, find a future wife who does it all for you. He’s only half kidding, but also listen to your fiancé when she says try your suit on several weeks prior to make sure it fits, oh and check the dry-cleaning more than 24hrs before the big day.

I’d say don’t sweat the small stuff. I think I stressed out a lot over small details that in the end didn’t matter. Focus on the big things and just remember that it’s only one day so make the most of it. It’s about the memories, not the material stuff.

 

 

 

Finding the right fashion choices for your day can be overwhelming, but not with our favourite fashion designers and boutiques by your side. Be sure to check out some of the best in the biz in our fashion directory and thank us later. 

ANTHONY  & NATALIE’S VENDORS

Ceremony and reception location: Rupert on Rupert, Collingwood – I had been for drinks one night about 4-5 years ago and just made a mental note it was a cute spot for an event, I never thought back then, that event would be my wedding. It was perfect! Mali was amazingly attentive through the whole process dealing with a couple of amateur wedding planners

 Celebrant: Vince Halloran – He is a friend of Anthony’s and we had seen him in action at another friends wedding and we knew he was the right guy for our nuptials, casual and funny, he was our vibe.

Photography: Alex Motta – Motta Weddings – Alex and I dated for about two weeks when we were kids, so it’s only fitting that he should photograph my wedding. Honestly could not say enough about how great this guy is at his job. It was nice to have a familiar face around, have a laugh at our awkwardness and just enjoy the process.

Florist: Alyssa – Thrive Flowers, Collingwood – I actually just found Thrive through Google and Instagram and loved the work the team did, particularly with being considered and sustainable. When I met with Alyssa, I knew she could bring my vision to life, she absolutely nailed it and I was so so happy with the beautiful arrangements she put together for the day.

Hair / Make-up: Kristina Canzoneri – did an absolutely stunning job turning me, my mum and my three gals into beauties on her own. Superstar!

The Dress: Designed by me, made by a local dressmaker (family friend)

Shoes: AWAKE Mode

Rings: His – William Edouard, Hers – ManiaMania

Menswear: Hugo Boss

Cake / Cake topper: Cake by a local cake maker recommended to me by my cousin, who I alse had make our engagement cake which was incredible!

Cake topper was the cake topper at my grandparents wedding in 1947, we also had a framed photo of them on their wedding day next to the cake so they could be part of our day.

Stationery / Signage: Designed by bride

Entertainment: DJ and MC – Michael Ciavarella, one of my brother’s best friends who I’ve known since I was 10 years old. If anyone knows how to get the dancefloor going, it’s Michael. He entertained us all through lockdown with his live DJ sets on Facebook and his music selection is the best.

 Transport: Hughes Transport – we just had a couple of premium sedans get us to the venue (no-fuss) and the drivers were so lovely and professional.

Honeymoon: We’re actually heading to Byron Bay for a little break. We had intended on a much longer trip to Europe (Anthony has never been and we’ve been dying to go for ages) but we felt it wasn’t the best time as the pandemic is still raging on.

 




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