Real Wedding – Rachel & Fletcher, Portsea VIC
From Fletch’s emotion-filled response to luminous Rach walking down the aisle towards him, to the effervescent expression of love and laughter on their faces as they took their first steps into married life, sneaking a peek into Rach and Fletch’s day was a total treat.
Photographer Tony Evans captured every magical moment with his usual artistry, and the results are an absolute delight.
Rach and Fletch are both lovers of the ocean but wanted to step the style up a notch, choosing Portsea Golf Club as the backdrop to their beach chic celebrations. With Fletcher’s design eye, their styling was nothing less than flawless.
Even with their carefully constructed plans obstructed by Covid, the matching looks of happiness and excitement on Fletch and Rach’s faces throughout their celebrations show exactly how little impact it had on their feelings in the moment. We highly recommend taking a positivity hit and checking out all the love!
At Rach’s friend’s 21st birthday party back in 2012.
There wasn’t really a specific moment, it was more how easily we fitted into each other’s lives. The more time went on, the more we found we had in common.
Fletch proposed at a gorgeous boutique hotel in the north of Corsica over a private picnic. He had designed the ring himself and carried it around with him for the first week of our holiday.
We were engaged for 18 months, as we both really wanted a March wedding. We organised a lot of things quite early in the process (locked in our venues, photographer, celebrant, and Rach’s dress at the beginning of 2019). It was lucky we were so organised, because the two weeks leading up to our wedding became incredibly stressful due to completely unforeseen circumstances (COVID-19).
We like to refer to it as ‘beach chic’ (which was the dress code on our invitations). We both love the beach (hence the location of our wedding), but wanted to go for a slightly more glamorous style that was a step up from relaxed beach/boho. Fletch is a designer and has an amazing sense of style, so had a very clear vision for the day – from the invitations to the welcome signs to the homemade bar to the flowers, he thought of everything.
Rach: Classic, simple and chic. I visited six wedding dress stores in Melbourne and tried on probably close to 50 dresses! But when I put on Lola Varma’s dresses I felt instantly relaxed and like myself. My bridesmaids told me afterwards that the dress I chose was what they always envisaged me wearing.
Fletch: Beach twist on a classic look. I always wanted a bow tie. I also wanted a stone jacket but something more fitted and tailored than an ordinary linen jacket. I don’t normally wear shoes, but Rach told me they were mandatory so I went for some classic black loafers (no socks).
Rach: All of it – I was so happy the day could actually go ahead and we could get married!
Fletch: Watching Rach walk down the aisle, trying to hold back my tears (unsuccessfully).
Meaning of marriage.
Celebrating our love with our closest friends and family.
Aisle: Stand By Me by Ben E King (bridesmaids) followed by Here Comes the Sun by The Beatles (bride), both played by our acoustic singer Tim.
Reception entry: Finally by Ce Ce Peniston (DJ).
First dance: Can’t Help Falling in Love by Elvis Presley, sung by our acoustic singer Tim.
Funny stories (or near disasters).
How long have you got…! The Federal Government announced new social distancing restrictions on 18 March, 48 hours before our wedding. This restricted indoor gatherings to 100 people (inclusive of staff) and outdoor gatherings to 500 people. We were so fortunate our ceremony was always planned for outdoors at Point Nepean, but faced a very difficult task regarding our reception.
Portsea Golf Club were incredible to work with and we managed to re-jig our entire reception set-up to move everything outside. The week leading up, in particular the two days prior, were some of the most stressful of our lives. But our families and bridal party rallied and we managed to pull it off! Amongst the chaos, Rach’s dad forgot his belt so, 15 minutes before the ceremony, asked Rach’s brother to find him a black belt. Rach’s sister’s boyfriend then had to run the belt down the access road at Point Nepean National Park to intercept the bridal cars before they arrived at the ceremony location. He then had to sprint back, following the bridal cars, so as to not miss the ceremony.
Rach’s carefully planned spreadsheets went totally out the window two days before – we literally did just ‘wing it’ in the end!
Words of wisdom.
As cliché as it sounds, accept that things will go wrong but trust those closest to you to step up in your moment of need. Even things that are done very last minute can be done very well.
We feel so lucky that we were able to get married, as planned, with the majority of our intended guests. We know there are so many couples who have had to postpone their wedding plans, some indefinitely. Our thoughts are with these couples. There are going to be some amazing, love-filled celebrations later this year! One of Rach’s bridesmaids was due to be married two weeks after us (on 4 April) but devastatingly had to pull the pin only a few days after our beautiful wedding. Rach is looking forward to stand by her side as her bridesmaid later this year.
Love the soothing styling of a beach themed wedding? We’ve pulled together some of our favourite ocean inspired celebrations, so vibrant you can almost smell the sea air and taste a mojito…
RACH & FLETCH’S VENDORS
Ceremony venue / location: Point Nepean National Park, Portsea
Reception venue / location: Portsea Golf Club, Portsea – Jess and her team were amazing and managed to ensure that our reception was not only beautiful, but also met the new Government requirements. Fletch always said he wanted a unique outdoor wedding reception – in the end, that’s exactly what he got!
Celebrant/Officiant: Rosemary Salvaris – Rosemary is so caring and takes her role very seriously. She was lovely to work with and came down the day before so we could do a proper run through at Point Nepean.
Photography: Tony Evans – Tony is incredible. He is so talented and managed to capture every little moment of the day. Our photos are full of candid shots of guests smiling and laughing so widely, which perfectly depicts the day. He also captured some very special moments between the two of us, including some beautiful aisle exit shots under a sea of rose petals. Tony is so calm and professional, we felt very relaxed during all our photos.
Styling: DIY. Fletch made the bar, welcome signs, ‘just got hitched’ arch and we had friends assist in arranging bunches of flowers.
Florist: Villa Floretti (Richelle Marks) – Richelle is so passionate about flowers and absolutely nailed the brief we had given her. Richelle prepared our bouquets, buttonholes and arbour bunch. Friends then assembled the remaining bunches for the tables.
Hair: Georgina Grant, Runway Room Sorrento.
Make-up: Rebekah Stephens. Bek is amazing, she is so talented and a delight to be around. She understood the look I wanted to go for (natural but glam) and was so lovely and calm on the day.
The dress: Lola Varma
Veil / headwear: Lola Varma
Shoes: Bianca Buccheri (from Dolci Firme).
Rings: Saphira Diamonds
Bridesmaid’s dresses: Shona Joy
Menswear: Oscar Hunt, Saba and MJ Bale (shirts)
Catering: DIY garden party at the ceremony (thanks Queen Victoria Market!). Portsea Golf Club catering at reception.
Bar: Made by Fletcher.
Favours: Stubbie holders (designed by Fletch).
Cake / Cake topper: Rach’s super talented cousin.
Stationery / Signage: Everything was designed by Fletcher – the invitations, welcome signs, menus, seating chart, stubbie holders, bar and ‘just got hitched’ arch. Fletch had our invitations printed through Hungry Workshop.
Entertainment: Timothy Douglas Music (acoustic singer/guitarist). Not only does he have a killer voice, Tim also has a wealth of knowledge about what does (and does not) work well at weddings. He provided great advice not only regarding song choice but other elements of the day we hadn’t even thought of. Tim also arranged the saxophone player for us, which included finding a substitute saxophonist the day before! Our DJs were ‘Edgework’ (Asher and Lachy).
Hire: Outdoor heaters from Peninsula Party Hire (last minute addition!). Glassware from Having A Party in Ringwood.
Honeymoon: On hold for now… We were supposed to be travelling to the US first week of June.