Real Wedding – Olivia & Mitch, Yarra Glen VIC
When Olivia and Mitch first crossed paths on a Chapel Street dance floor, there was an instant spark. Fast forward to the day they say their I Do’s, and that electric effervescence between them is evident in every bliss-filled moment, captured with perfect artistry by Tess Follett.
Liv remained true to their theming ethos of classic elegance with a white-on-white colour palette across florals, decor and styling accents, giving simultaneously fresh and chic feels while retaining a timeless appeal. Sugarbee Flowers creates a stunningly seamless transition from ceremony to reception with artful arrangements focusing on textural intrigue and modern juxtapositions, in soft sculptural forms.
While guests were free to leave their love notes via voice message through our friends at Off the Hook, the soundtrack for the day was given a magic touch by music masters Hey Jack. For us, the end-of-night photos of the newlyweds enjoying a few stolen kisses, away from their guests, are pure old-world glam. Liv wears an effortlessly elegant gown by Mariana Hardwick, while Mitch cuts a sleek figure in his YSG Tailors suit.
Dive in to see every movie moment unfold.
We met through mutual friends at a club on Chapel Street called Warehouse. A meeting in the middle of the dance floor quickly turned into our first kiss then and there.
Liv: For me, as cringy as it sounds, it was love at first sight with Mitch. There was an immediate attraction, and it didn’t take long after getting to know him and learning we shared the same values that I knew he was the one.
Mitch: There was an instant spark, and I knew she was something special, but after going away with one of my mates on holiday, I knew she was the one; after all, distance makes the heart grow fonder.
Liv: I always thought the day he’d propose, I would know, but I was genuinely surprised, and I’m so glad it turned out this way. The story goes my best friend Irene (MOH) took me on a private horse ride in St Andrews, which she had told me was a gift given to her godmother that she didn’t want, so knowing I’m a horse lover, Irene thought it would be fun for us to do together. The trail ride led to St Andrew’s Beach, where Mitch was hiding behind a huge rock, genuinely surprising me by asking me to be his wife. I have since learnt that originally Mitch had purchased the private horse ride for us together, but it turned out he exceeded the weight limit (being a 6”8 giant), so Irene had to take one for the team and came up with the story about her godmother to throw me off! We then celebrated at my parents’ house with our families and closest friends.
Mitch: It took multiple reschedulings due to Covid. Liv loves horses, so I had planned to go horse riding with her on a beach and pop the question. One problem, though, was that I was too heavy to get on a horse, so I had to rope Liv’s best friend/maid of honour to go on the trail ride for me, and although she isn’t a fan of horses, she was happy to help. I made a little picnic on the beach just around a corner, so she couldn’t see it coming! The day was very overcast and raining. I was getting drenched on the beach, so I hid behind a massive rock on the beach for cover! Moments before Liv came around the corner, the rain stopped, and the sun came out! Perfect timing. Once she saw me, she jumped off the horse and ran over to me. We laughed and cried, and I asked her the big question! We now laugh over our engagement photos because, in all the pics, Liv still has the horse riding helmet on, being so surprised and caught up in the moment she never took it off.
I definitely underestimated the amount of work that goes into planning a wedding. I didn’t have a wedding planner/coordinator as our venue offered an on-the-day coordinator, which was fantastic, and I didn’t hire a stylist as I love design and had a clear vision in mind. However, in saying that, I think I would have liked a coordinator in the lead-up to the big day just to make sure that everything was in order and touch base with vendors. I had a lot of emails to send, especially the week before the wedding, liaising between vendors, so having a planner/coordinator would’ve taken that stress away.
Classic, elegant and timeless. I wanted something that I would look back on in years to come and still love. That went for the dress, suits, and bridesmaid dresses as well as the florals, décor and stationery on the day. Hence, I went with classic white flowers, a simple dress and bridesmaids in black. I also designed our own wedding logo with the first letters of our names, M&O, to make the day more personalised. We used this on our invites, stationery, and napkins, and I even had acrylic drink tags made of our logo and had the M&O embroidered with pearls on my veil. I am someone who pays a lot of attention to detail, so our invites and website matched the font and colour palette of our stationery on the day. Although it probably wasn’t something our guests noticed, it was these little details that tied everything together. I am currently in the process of arranging our wedding album and will have the same font and logo on that as well.
For style inspiration, I used Ivory Tribe! Via the real weddings section. I spent a lot of time reading through the couple’s experiences. It was the best way to find inspiration and ideas and for sourcing vendors.
We loved our ceremony; our celebrant made it so personal and summed us up as a couple perfectly. It was fun, emotional, and so special to be surrounded by all our absolute favourite people.
Similarly to the styling of our wedding, we wanted our outfits to be classic, elegant and timeless. I wanted to wear the dress and not let the dress wear me, so I went with a relatively simple style of dress. The boys were dressed in classic black tuxedos with bow ties, and bridesmaids wore black slip dresses.
It would be impossible to pinpoint one favourite moment of the day. From getting ready with my bridesmaids and mum in the morning to seeing Mitch as I walked down the aisle whilst having my dad by my side, the ceremony, speeches, being surrounded by all our loved ones and dancing the night away with our guests – it all made for the perfect day.
Meaning of marriage.
Making a lifelong commitment to each other and an expression of how much we mean to each other.
Aisle: Can’t help falling in love by Elvis Presley/Kina Grannis
Signing: No One by Alicia Keys
Recessional: A Sky Full of Stars by Coldplay
Reception entry: I like Love (I Love Love) by Solitaire
First dance: More Than a Woman by Bee Gees
Reception farewell/exit: Shooting Stars by Bag Raiders
Funny stories or near disasters.
I forgot my bouquet and didn’t realise until I was just about to walk down the aisle, which caused a delay in our ceremony start time. Fortunately, we were staying close to the venue, so my dad was able to collect it. Due to this delay, it was timed perfectly, with the sun coming out as I walked down the aisle. So, we say it happened for that reason.
The importance of a run sheet and liaising with vendors so that everyone is on the same page. There were particular details I wouldn’t have thought of without the help of our vendors. A big one is what time the sun will set. This was an important one for photos, planning our ceremony, and the timeline for the day.
Words of wisdom.
Have trust in your vendors! They have the most experience and know what works, so they take care of everything on the day, so you don’t have to worry.
Writing your vows can be an overwhelming task. For many of us, there is so much to say, along with the pressure of wanting to make them perfect. So, we’ve compiled some tips to help your write your best I’Dos (and your best is pretty perfect, we promise!).
LIV & MITCH’S VENDORS
Ceremony & reception venue: Acacia Ridge Winery Yarra Valley. When you see the venue, it speaks for itself. Cathy was incredible with the planning of our wedding; she has so much knowledge and was able to provide such valuable advice. Not only was it the most beautiful location, but they had such amazing staff who helped with so much on the day. From coordinating the day/night and making sure everything ran as per the timeline to ensuring the bridal party always had full drinks.
Photographer: Tess Follett. We are so grateful to have had the wonderful Tess as our photographer. She provided so much guidance and assistance with how the day ran, and the photos turned out more beautiful than expected. Tess was an absolute dream and worked so well with our amazing videographer, Ryan.
Videographer: Ryan Adams. Ryan was amazing! He has such a chilled vibe and brought a sense of calmness in the lead-up to our day. On the day, he went unnoticed in the best way possible, which allowed him to capture emotion and candid moments that were portrayed in the final edit of our wedding film.
Celebrant & MC: Kahani Motiani. Kahani, where do I start? We clicked instantly! If she wasn’t our celebrant, we would’ve had her as a guest. She was so helpful every step of the way, especially when it came to our vows, to make sure they were the same vibe and similar in length. We can’t thank her enough. She made everything feel so personal and made everyone laugh and feel very welcome. Funnily enough, finding a celebrant was Mitch’s one job. He wanted to find the perfect celebrant for us, and he nailed it! If I knew he was going to make such great choices, I would’ve given him more tasks in planning. We loved Kahani so much we had to have her as our MC, too.
Florist: Sugar Bee Flowers. Youki and her team absolutely nailed the brief. The flower arrangements turned out better than I could have ever expected; I was so happy with them.
Make-up: Laura DiFrancesco. I am very particular about the way I have my make-up. I booked Laura in for a trial, and it was honestly the best makeup I’ve ever had done. It was long-lasting; she provided me with a maintenance kit on the day and made me feel so beautiful.
Hair: A Hairstylist Secret. Darian was such great company; the morning of the wedding, she perfected all our hairstyles, which held all night. I wanted my bun to be as small as possible, and she managed to achieve this despite how thick and long my hair is.
Tans: Bronzed Melbourne. The most perfect, even tan you’ll ever get. Shahna customised each of our tans according to our skin tone, so we were all left with the perfect colour.
The dress: Mariana Hardwick. I thought choosing the dress was going to be one of the most difficult decisions to make, but it turns out it was the easiest. I had made an appointment with Mariana Hardwick early on in my planning process, and at that stage, I didn’t know what style of dress I was after. From this appointment, I thought I would try on some dresses and leave with more of an idea of the style I wanted to go with; I did not expect to leave the store that day with the dress in hand! I ended up going with the very first dress I tried on!
Veil / headwear: My alterations lady, Julie, custom made my veil and headband.
Rings: Saphira Diamonds. Mitch purchased my engagement ring through Adriana at Saphira Diamonds, so of course, we had to get our wedding bands through her as well. Adriana was not only helpful with selecting our perfect wedding bands, but she kindly sent through recommendations on vendors as well.
Bridesmaid’s dresses: Shona Joy. My bridesmaids wore low backless halter neck black slip dresses with strappy heels from Tony Bianco.
Suits, bowties & shoes: YSG Tailors. The whole suit-fitting process was so easy and enjoyable. Ryan and the team at YSG were so good at their job and paid a lot of attention to detail, making sure our shirts were the same white as Liv’s wedding dress. We definitely recommend YSG to anyone; it was such a fun and stress-free process. Being able to watch the footy and have a couple of drinks with my groomsmen was a highlight.
Catering: Locavore Locavore Studio & Catering. Locavore was recommended by Cathy at Acacia Ridge, and we went with the shared plates style of service rather than an alternative drop menu. We wanted our guests to have a choice of what they ate rather than get the luck of the draw with an alternative drop menu. There is always a risk of someone getting their least preferred dish, and we wanted to avoid this for our guests. Being the massive foodies we are, it was important for us to have great food and a lot of it- and Locavore certainly delivered. We had hot and cold canapes at cocktail hour after the ceremony before proceeding to main dining, where guests had the choice of three mains, a starch and three salad/veg dishes, as well as a mini dessert. I would highly recommend this kind of food service and Locavore to any couples planning a wedding. Acacia Ridge supplied table risers for the food to be placed on so that it didn’t make our guest tables crowded with plates. Our guests were then able to serve themselves as if it were a large family dinner.
Cake / Cake topper: Creme de la Cakes. We had a three-tier cake with smooth fondant and a cascade of fondant petals. Flavours: zesty lemon, salted caramel espresso and mars mud.
Stationery / Signage: Rebel Reflect. Jojo was amazing with the countless emails, conversations and detail changes I made along the way when planning the stationary for our wedding. I was so impressed with her help and advice from the very first email I sent, so it was an easy choice to have her do our invites, website and on-the-day stationary.
Entertainment: Hey Jack. We had Romy acoustic duo for our pre-ceremony entertainment and cocktail hour, then had Blake as DJ during the reception.
Honeymoon: We went on a minimoon for a week after our wedding to Mooloolaba, Queensland, which was really lovely to relax and rewind. But we actually went to Europe for seven weeks a couple of months after the wedding for our honeymoon, where we visited France, Portugal, Spain and Italy.