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“Nicholas asked me to marry him on the way to coffee one morning!” says Poppy, one of our beautiful brides from our first annual Real Wedding Special. “To most people this may seem boring but the one thing I love about Nick is we have the best time just living our life together, doing the little things like going for coffee… the quiet moments when I know I wouldn’t be anywhere else.”

Surprisingly their wedding, captured by photographer Lilli Waters of  I Got You Babe, was nowhere near as simple. Both creative beings (Nicholas has worked as a sculptor in Melbourne for 15 years) with plenty of imaginative friends, their day quickly became a collaboration of wild ideas. “We know incredible artists, designers, musicians, chefs, interior designers, and puppeteers! Ha ha… the list goes on but we do know a puppeteer!” says Poppy overwhelmed by their willingness to play a part in their special day.

“We didn’t have to hire anyone”, she adds, proving it’s not what you know but who you know. “Nicholas had a huge influence as the reception was held at the Melbourne Savage Club, a private members gentleman’s club, of which he is a member. I called the club Narnia, behind that big red door is another world and you are in Melbourne CBD just off Collins St! The club is full of art and artefacts, it speaks of traditions, culture and secrets.”

To tie in with their old-world vibe Poppy, after many failed shopping adventures, chose to have her glamorous gown made. “I always wanted long lace sleeves so I went to D’Italia in Malvern as they have a wide selection of European lace. It was there that I saw the gold French lace and fell in love straight away. The shop then put me in touch with dressmaker Sally Crann who helped me make the perfect dress”, says Poppy whose friend spent two weeks afterwards hand-beading it.

Not normally sticklers for tradition, Poppy and Nicholas decided that on this occasion, it wouldn’t hurt to include just one. In fact, it could even get people drunk. “The wedding cake was my great, great grandmother’s fruitcake recipe, which had a litre of brandy in it!” says Poppy. By far the best part of their night however, took place inside a cupboard. “Our minister gave us the best advice… find two times in the day to disappear with each other for five minutes. We hid in a cupboard and just laughed at how high we both felt.” Meanwhile, the show went on, with their group of artists, lawyers, musicians, carpenters, surgeons, teachers and dancers taking to the stage not long after finishing off their piece of brandy-infused fruit cake.

Don’t have quite as many talented friends as these two? Head to our directory to find some of the best Australian and New Zealand vendors around who will be more than happy to give you a helping hand!

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CREDITS Photos I Got You Babe // Bridal gown D’Italia // Jewellery Kozminsky // Shoes Lucchesi via Zomp // Rings Macros Davidson // Bridesmaids dresses ASOS // Grooms suit Carl Nave // Grooms shoes Crockett & Jones // Grooms hair Morris Motley // Grooms shoes Salvatore Morziello via The Vintage Twin // Ceremony Melbourne Welsh Church, VIC // Reception Melbourne Savage Club, VIC // Catering Obelix // Styling and decorations Supple Fox and Brustman Boyde // Hair Bouquet & Garter // Makeup I Put A Spell On You // Entertainment Supple Fox, Miles and Simone, The Mad Hatter and Loretta Miller & The Jazz Party.