Kelly and Mark (first featured in Issue 16) met the old fashioned way – and when we say ‘old fashioned’, we of course mean on the dance floor at a trashy indie nightclub in the city. “I highly doubt that Kelly was attracted to the dance moves, but obviously luck was in the air that night. She was wearing a retro op shop top and skirt, with big jewellery and black hair and was one of the most alluring and attractive dance partners I’ve ever had the privilege to dance with. We shared our first kiss on the Pony dance floor, our first date the following day and we’ve been dancing like losers and travelling the world ever since.”
Fast forward 10 years later, Kelly and Mark decided to make things official at The Barn in Geelong with a “rustic, romantic and relaxed” vibe in mind and Jai, the lensman behind Free The Bird Weddings, was there to capture the good times. “We were really particular about finding the right photographer for us, we absolutely didn’t want anything too posed or generic/bridal. Jai’s images are so moody, natural and beautiful; we just knew he was right for us – especially after meeting him before the wedding and getting to know him. He’s just so lovely and so easy to be around, it was like having one of our mates shoot our wedding. We adored having him there,” says the couple, who surely didn’t skimp on the whole ‘do it yourself’ thing.
“We planned the whole wedding ourselves, with an incredible amount of support from our close friends and families. DIY elements were the hand-built arbour, signage situated around the venue, extra floral elements were put together by my godmother Anne, and we made the wedding favours ourselves – funnelling oil and chilli into little bottles late at night after work. We folded napkins ourselves, set the tables ourselves…I wouldn’t have done it any other way. It made the whole day so much more special after working so hard to create what we had dreamed up,” Kelly tells us, adding that the day was full of love, family, friends, good food and booze.
“Celebrating with all of our dearest friends and family was a highlight. During the ceremony looking out at our families and everyone that makes our life and relationship as rich as it is was definitely something extremely special. At the reception there was so much love floating around. Everyone was hugging, kissing, laughing and crying all evening. The party was just as much a celebration of everyone there and how much we love one another,” these lovebirds happily remember, reminding those soon leaping into marriage not to get swept into what you think a wedding ‘should be’.
As far as dress hunting went, Kelly knew she was after something that didn’t scream ‘BRIDE’, so naturally, when she tried on the stunning sequinned Willow gown from One Day Bridal, she knew it was the one. “The team at One Day Bridal are the most lovely women, it was bittersweet picking my dress up on the final day as I didn’t have any more fittings booked with them!”
“Do whatever you want and what reflects you as a couple, what makes you happy as a pair. Surround yourself with the people that have been there to support you throughout your relationship, we found that our wedding was as much of a celebration of that as it was about our love as a couple. It’s an amazing opportunity to gather every person you love in a room and have dinner and a drink together. You don’t get that often. Don’t focus too much on perfections or imperfections. If you end the day married, exhausted and happy the day will have been perfect regardless.”
CREDITS Photographer Free The Bird Weddings // Florist Fowlers Flowers // Stationery Cody Comrie // Ceremony and Reception Venue The Barn, VIC // Caterer Annie’s Kitchen // Cake Sticky Fingers Bakery // Entertainment Geelong Entertainment // Celebrant Di O’Brien // Rings Welfe // Bridal Gown Designer and Boutique One Day Bridal // Lingerie Agent Provocateur and Aimee Cherie Intimates // Shoes Stuart Weitzman // Hair and makeup Belinda Zollo // Bridesmaid Dresses Thurley, Maticevski, Spell Byron Bay, Grace Loves Lace, Isla, Christopher Esber and Camilla and Marc // Bridesmaid Shoes Tony Bianco // Groom’s Suit Jack London // Pants P. Johnson Tailors // Shoes Everyday Hero // Socks Bon Folk // Groomsmen Suit Top Man, Hallenstiens and David Jones // Groomsmen Gift Jamieson.