How To Get Married Quickly In Australia

Oct 18, 2020

How to get married quickly in Australia: you can’t bear the bollocks, nor frankly, be f*cked: you just want to get it didded’ and get it done.

Or maybe it’s for a VISA situation. I’m not here to judge.

How To Get Married Quickly In Australia
Lexy and Sean

In Australia, the quickest that you can get married through the standard process is one month from the moment that you decide you want to wear the eternal shackles of undying love to your future betrothed.

This can also be done quicker – read on.

To get married, apart from ideally needing to be in a relationship that’s withstood some of the sands of time with someone you (ideally) like, there’s really only a few moving parts that are actually happening: having a short ceremony witnessed, and signing some papers.

The rest of what we associate with “getting married” are really just shiny things that we throw on top: that to be fair, are fun and awesome, and you can also sprinkle a bit of radness on top in various ways.

How to get married quickly in Australia in just three steps.

How To Get Married Quickly In Australia
Kirstyn and Nicholas

1. Select a marriage celebrant

This is number one, because a minimum of one month before you intend to marry, you need to lodge your NOIM (Notice of Intent to Marry) to your celebrant. They then use this notice to interface with the government.

You can download your Notice of Intent to Marry here.

If you’re planning on getting married in Melbourne for example, this would mean you would either select a Wedding Celebrant if you want a specific character to your ceremony. Your other option, is to instead register it at the Victorian Marriage Registry, or with a small alternative venue such as The Altar Electric or I Do Drive Thru: each of these can provide you with a marriage celebrant and assist in getting you married quickly.

If you are unable to be mobile for your ceremony, ensure you query your potential celebrant on the options available for where you can get married – which include your home.

2. Pick your date

Knowing that you need a minimum of one months notice, after you have worked out where you are getting married in Australia and by what celebrant, you will then ask them what their availability is like, and how soon they can marry you.

How quickly you can get married in Australia is limited by your celebrants availability. Then you book your date with them.

3. Turn up, sign stuff!

Your Authorised Wedding Celebrant will run you through all of the paperwork needs, as well as other requirements that you need to meet before marrying quickly (such as, you know, not being already married, and not attempting to marry your sibling).

You must also have two witnesses present, each over the age of 18: your Wedding Celebrant can be one, and your photographer can be the other.

How to get married quickly in Australia in less than one month?

You can get married quickly in Australia in less than one month, by filling out a special form to expedite the process, which has specific requirements you must meet. Go here for the form.

You will still need to find an authorised marriage celebrant that is available to marry you when you wish to get married, so you should make a shortlist of celebrants to cross check availability with as soon as you can.

Three extra things to think about if you’re wanting to get married quickly in Australia

How To Get Married Quickly In Australia
Hannah and Lachlan

You’re here because you want to get married quickly, but that’s no reason to not splash a bit of the good stuff on top of it. You can still have a short, sweet and quick ceremony, while also enjoying it.

1. Consider hiring a photographer

Find a local wedding photographer to hang out with you, even if just for an hour. I regularly photograph small weddings and elopements all over Australia and it can be a beautiful opportunity to get some beautiful images of you hitting the city or whatever environment you got married in, including your home or a local park.

2. Plan something fun afterwards

If the papers are worth signing, that’s worth celebrating over a wine/ginger-beer/milkshake/insert preferred beverage here. Refer back to point #1 – this can be a beautiful moment to capture you two just hanging out. Pick a restaurant, cafe, or activity to enjoy afterwards. It doesn’t have to be big and bombastic either, it can be slow, calm and simple.

3. Spread the love!

Celebrate with your community via a facetime hookup, or reach out to Bottlebrush Films, who can arrange your ceremony to be live-streamed.

How To Get Married Quickly In Australia
Dave and Sarah

And off you go.

Getting married is easier done, than said.

Hire me as your wedding photographer here.

Hello May Wedding Photographer

Oct 16, 2020

I am thrilled to share the Hello May wedding of Pepe and Sam as their photographer, featured in the September issue of HELLO MAY MAGAZINE on news-stands now! Is this the most colourful wedding ever? Grab yourself a copy of Hello May to find out.

Hello May Wedding Photographer

I was thrilled to be the Hello May wedding photographer for these two marvels, and their wedding was put on at the gritty Melbourne warehouse venue, The Line, with an all-star cast of the most incredibly talented vendors which doubled as their cheer-squad.

Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer

Let’s just say, this was a wedding of firsts.

The first wedding where nearly all the vendors got actual tattoos at the reception.

The first wedding where the caterer and the bride ended up in (in) the freezer. It was a hot day.

The first wedding with an inverse neon-crucifix gracing the centre of the reception, and the first wedding where the dance-floor was opened up by the screeching of Slayer, and half the bridal party ended up on a bed in the middle of the reception in a pasta-fight.

It, was, and had, everything, all for this beautiful couple and their intimate community (right before Covid made it cool).

I won’t show the whole shebang just yet, you’ll have to pick up a copy of Hello May on newsstands now.

Hello May Wedding Vendors: Pepe and Sam


Wedding Celebrant and Concept creator: Nat Sproal Celebrant
Wedding Photographer: Briars Atlas
Wedding Venue: @the_line_melbourne
Wedding Creative direction + Styling: Good Day Club
Wedding Florals: Babiana Botanic
Wedding Video: Lunar Red Films
Wedding Hair and Makeup: Killer Queen Creative
Wedding Catering: @fatandskinnycatering
Wedding Cake: Torte By Mirjana
Wedding Rings: @midnightkissjewellery
Wedding Ceiling Installs: Bangin Hangins
Wedding Tableware/ table styling: @bettymayvintagehire
Wedding LED crosses and bad jokes: The Arbourists
Wedding DJ: @dj_hot_wheels
Wedding Music: @justme_plusone
Wedding Wine: @minimwine
Wedding Beer: @moondogbrewing 

Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer
Hello May Wedding Photographer

More Featured Hello May Weddings

I’m a Melbourne wedding photographer, and I photograph weddings all over Australia, New Zealand, Europe and beyond. Check out this wedding I photographed featured on Hello May – Amy and Bronson.

Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York

Oct 12, 2020

Best Wedding Venues in Melbourne

  1. Newport Substation
  2. Rupert on Rupert
  3. Half Acre
  4. Panama Dining Room
  5. State Library Victoria
  6. Longsong
  7. Gather and Tailor
  8. The Deck At Circa
  9. Quat Quatta
  10. Luminare
  11. Brunswick Mess Hall
  12. Fortyfive Downstairs
  13. Glasshaus
  14. George Ballroom
  15. Altar Electric
  16. Fyansford Paper Mill
  17. The Line

Melbourne is full to the brim with interesting, quirky, and Unique Wedding Venues to appeal to every design sensibility under the sun. Our city is kinda like an egg – ask 5 people for their favourite way to consume it, and you’ll get 4 different answers, and one who’d prefer a nut-based alternative. So if anywhere is gonna be able to cater to a wild range of vibes within a small radius, it’s Melbourne.

What weddings are going to look like in Victoria is a little different in the short to mid-term, so this is a list for folks with alternative and unique sensibilities.

When I made this list, I essentially made it for myself: there’s plenty of lists on regular wedding venues out there, but these are the best wedding venues in Melbourne that have a little bit of sass and quirk to them, and cover a range of wedding venue styles, from industrial warehouse, to art deco: these are wedding venues for large weddings, small weddings, and everything in between.

1. Newport Substation – Warehouse Wedding Venue

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Newport Substation | Wedding Venue Location: Newport | Photo: Briars Atlas

What do an obscure German electronic artist, experiential-theatre zombie-apocalypse, and majestic high-end wedding all have in common? They all found a home at the towering Substation in Newport – in no small way thanks to a philanthropic strategy of intertwinement with the local & international arts community.

The Substation has this classic “we’ve just casually repurposed an industrial Brooklyn warehouse” vibe written all over it, with staggering floor-to-ceiling windows (this criteria would be less staggering if, for example, the windows were in a hobbit-sized home but we’re talking a less vertically-challenged structure here), red statement curtains, and one end lined with more secret little rooms than you can poke a stick at.

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
Newport Substation Reception | Wedding Venue Location: Newport | Photo: Briars Atlas

With plenty of space to spare both in the main atrium and the rooms below, Melbournes unique wedding venue queen Newport Substation can be mapped to nearly any configuration, including any furniture layout you can imagine, and an on-site burrito stand for guests to tuck into (or the most epic grazing table you can imagine).

Set up a band in one corner, quirky photobooth in the other, hire a leading progressive florist like Good Grace & Humour or Georgie Boy to dress up another end with an impossibly wild installation (or leave it in all it’s all bare glory), and you’ve got a space that’ll be on the tips of the guests tongues for weeks. After they recover from their hangovers.

Check out Nicole and Dan’s incredible wedding at Newport Substation. One of my favourite things about Newport Substation, not to take away anything from it as a brilliant Melbourne venue, is that it takes me back to any number of the incredible and enormous New York Warehouse venues i’ve had the good fortune of being in.


Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Newport Substation website: www.thesubstation.org.au
Newport Substation wedding gallery: Nicole & Dan
Venue size: Enormous. 250 seated, 300 cocktail

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Newport Substation Portraits | Wedding Venue Location: Newport | Photo: Briars Atlas

2. Rupert on Rupert – Warehouse Wedding Venue

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
Rupert On Rupert Ceremony | Wedding Venue Location: Collingwood | Photo: Briars Atlas

Rupert is kinda like the Tesla flying in outer space with an astronaut next to it and David Bowie blaring from the stereo as it flies towards Jupiter: it probably shouldn’t exist at all, much less where it does, but – it does.

And thankful for it existing, we are. Separated into a Main Dining Hall, Conservatory, and Cocktail Lounge, alternative wedding venue in Melbourne king Rupert on Rupert takes the crown for classic modern New York bar vibes in Melbourne, and wouldn’t be out of place in any of the more recently gentrified areas of inner-Brooklyn: which is also code-word for gorgeously designed, thoughtfully laid out, with a level of subtle considered genius by a design team that makes the space grow on you like the third album from that previously favourite artist of yours.

Geographically tucked neatly away into the “local knowledge” category, pop into Rupert on Rupert on a weekend, and it’s jam-packed with folks who know it’s one of the most unique venues Melbourne has to offer with it’s incredible food and quirky interiors in a classy casual setting.

Rupert on Rupert has three main areas, each of which can be repurposed as you need, and the menu is headed by (x) and a crack-team of friendly maestros who can cater incredibly for vegetarians and vegans alike.

I’m not saying to just get Aunt Jenny on her iPad taking the photos for the day, but I will say that with every inch of the interior so thoughtfully considered at Rupert on Rupert, you could probably point your 2002 Nokia at the urinal and still get an incredible image.

But don’t do that, because it’s extraordinarily weird that you’re still using that phone.

For more inspiration check out Alix and Tim’s Rupert on Rupert Wedding.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Rupert on Rupert website: www.rupertonrupert.com.au
Rupert on Rupert wedding gallery: Alix & Tim’s wedding at Rupert on Rupert
Venue size: Cosy & compartmentalised.  (85 seated, 220 cocktail)

Melbourne Wedding Venues
Rupert On Rupert Reception | Wedding Venue Location: Collingwood | Photo: Briars Atlas
Melbourne Wedding Venues
Rupert On Rupert Reception | Wedding Venue Location: Collingwood | Photo: Briars Atlas

3. Half Acre – Modern Wedding Venue

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Half Acre | Wedding Venue Location: South Melbourne | Photo: Briars Atlas

South Melbourne’s Half Acre, helmed by the catering mad-hatters at Food and Desire, is a giant secret dropped right in the middle of the wide streets of South Melbourne. Occupying a corner of the suburb that mostly is home to industry, it is – apart from the majestic cacophany of matrimony on a weekend – a gloriously quiet dead-zone of a weekend.

In line with this play on contrasts, it’s actually pretty near impossible to tell what the hell the place even is, unless you’re in the know, or a loaded up wedding guest finds themselves playing horizontal on the nature strip outside.

With all the new wedding venues Melbourne has on offer, Half Acre are a giant, well-oiled diamond (if that’s a thing). Half Acre itself was previously an industrial complex, and retains a lot of that gritty charm in it’s warehouse interior. Half Acre is split into several different areas, giving an enormous range of opportunity for a smaller ceremony indoors, over to their large, high-roofed reception hall.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Half Acre website: https://www.halfacre.com.au/
Half Acre Wedding gallery: Food and Desire
Venue size: Seated: 264, Cocktail: 400

Melbourne Wedding Venue
Half Acre Portraits | Wedding Venue Location: South Melbourne | Photo: Briars Atlas
Melbourne Wedding Venues
Half Acre Portraits | Wedding Venue Location: South Melbourne | Photo: Briars Atlas

4. Panama Dining Room – New York Style Wedding Venue
Wedding Venue Location: Collingwood

The grand-master of alternative wedding venues in Melbourne. Beer-soaked carpets, wistful homages to Dave the hot bassist etched into the bathroom walls, and the shady corner where your insouciant friend got lucky.

These are a few things that you definitely won’t find at Panama Dining room anymore.

When stepping into this cavernous room filled with giant arch windows you might be forgiven that in it’s past-life as a music venue in the heartland of the pub-scene, the majestic gateways of Panama Dining Room looking into and around the city were completely covered up.

Since being exposed in all their glory, Panama Dining Room has staked its claim as one of Melbournes best open-bar, dining-hybrid venues, and if you gently squint, it’s easy to imagine yourself in the warehouse-loft of a pre-crash Wall St tycoon in the 80s.

So squint, dear friend, bring that cigar to the lips, and inhale that sweet, sweet smell of pre-2007 venue tobacco laws, while you imagine yourself in that steamy machine of systemic exploitation known as wall st.

Fortunately for those of the stamina variety, Panama did carry one little thing over from it’s days as a live music venue: a 1am liquor license.

So party on, dear aspirational Gordon Gecko.

The Panama Dining Room is located in the heart of Smith St, which places it in beautiful proximity to some of the most iconic and historical parts of Melbournes oldest suburb, Fitzroy. That puts it at arms length away from an incredible lot of great portrait opportunities that can be had even with just a quick little sprint away from the Panama.


Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Panama Dining Room websitewww.thepanama.com.au
Venue size: 160 guests seated, 220 standing

5. State Library of Victoria – Library Wedding Venue

Wedding Venue Location: Melbourne CBD

Bookworms by day, dancefloor worms by night: State Library Victoria is the poster-child for a venues ability to play Jekyll, Hyde, and all their far-removed cousins, and might just be our cities most slumbering giant gem.

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
State Library Victoria| Wedding Venue Location: Melbourne City | Photo: Briars Atlas

There’s much to be said for nostalgia. It is after all, the reason why we fought tooth and nail for an (ill-fated, but I digress) Hey Hey it’s Saturday revival wayback when, and why the the whiff of a can of Lynx can suddenly remove two decades of time and space for those in the mid-30’s bracket.

The savvy folk at Showtime events and caretakers of State Library Victoria know the value of nostalgia, and so they know that once the lukewarm memories of higher education and it’s study pressures have faded into memory, there’s nothing more appealing than inhaling an Espresso Martini and double-stack of canapes in one of the worlds most extravagantly beautiful study halls.

Enter the unusual wedding venue, State Library Victoria.

Thankfully to the mad hatters at SLV, there are a total of five separate, incredibly distinct spaces in which to host your wedding, that can cater from the intimate to over 500 guests. So whether you’ve spent your days as a cave dwelling misanthrope or have as many friends as Tom from Myspace, you’re probably covered.

The lay of the land at State Library Victoria starts at the obviously decadent La Trobe Reading Room, throws a curveball of art via the Cowen Gallery, and ends at the recently revitalised Ian Potter Queens Hall, with the glorious North Rotunda and Isabelle Fraser room in between.

The State Library of Victoria, as well as having a variety of rooms that would be the envy of a Labrynth-trotting Bowie, is smack in the heart of the CBD – lending itself to plenty of beautiful portrait opportunities, classic Melbourne laneways and beyond, and is one of the more left of centre alternative wedding venues in Melbourne.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
State Library of Victoria websitehttps://venues.slv.vic.gov.au/wedding/
Venue size:
Isabelle Fraser Room: 156 Banquet 220 Cocktail
Ian Potter Queens Hall: 290 Banquet 500 Cocktail
La Trobe Reading Room: 520 Cocktail
North Rotunda: 60 Banquet 90 Cocktail
Cowen Gallery: 220 Banquet 350 Cocktail

State Library Wedding Melbourne
State Library Wedding Venue| Wedding Venue Location: Melbourne City | Photo: Briars Atlas

 

6. Longsong – Warehouse Wedding Venue

Wedding Venue Location: Melbourne CBD

Longsong is what happens when a collective of design-centred mavens pair with culinary master David Moyle, and point their magic towards an historic old Melbourne horse stable in the middle of chinatown.

Alternative Wedding venues in Melbourne - Longsong wedding
Longsong Melbourne| Wedding Venue Location: Melbourne City | Photo: Briars Atlas

Majestic tall ceilings, a wave of paper lanterns above and original brick floors from this converted 1900s space, JCB Architects added another space to a growing list of venues in Melbourne keeping as many sympathetic roots to the original uses of the structure as possible, while allowing it to stand alone as progressive and stylish. Add a dash of quirky photographic genius on entry and you have yourselves one serve of Longsong.

Longsong is the benchmark in subtle, sprawling classy alternative vibes in Melbourne, with a 2-tier open space that lets you know exactly what it’s all about as soon as you walk in.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Longsong website: https://longrainmelbourne.com/
Longsong Wedding Gallery: Together Journal
Venue size: Up to 200 people

7. Gather & Tailor – Warehouse Wedding Venue

Wedding Venue Location: West Melbourne

Gather and Tailor takes an old inner-city warehouse, and puts it in the hands of the genius, quirky captains of wedding hospitality, Nudo.

Alternative Wedding venues in Melbourne - Gather and Tailor
Gather and Tailor| Wedding Venue Location: Footscray | Photo: Briars Atlas

5km out of the CBD, smack-against a bunch of shipping containers and an old-school automotive garage, it initially feels like you aren’t quite allowed to have all that room and calm all to yourself – but then you lean into it, and in return are gifted with one of the most unassumingly mighty warehouse experiences in Melbourne, and a small nod to a classic New York warehouse.

With the seasoned hands of the Nudo team and their hospitality empire at your fingertips, Gather and Tailor is a modular set of spaces, and the perfect blank canvas where you can call in as much or as little of the in-house styling as you need.

Check out Ash and Karan’s glorious Gather and Tailor wedding here.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Gather & Tailor website: www.gatherandtailor.com.au
Gather & Tailor wedding gallery: Gather and Tailor wedding
Venue size: Pretty damn big, mate. 300 seated, 450 standing (Across two physical spaces).

Alternative Wedding venues in Melbourne - Gather and Tailor outside
Gather and Tailor Wedding Portraits| Wedding Venue Location: Footscray | Photo: Briars Atlas
Alternative Wedding venues in Melbourne - Gather and Tailor
Gather and Tailor Reception| Wedding Venue Location: Footscray | Photo: Briars Atlas

8. The Deck at Circa – Classy Wedding Venue

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Circa The Prince Deck| Wedding Venue Location: St Kilda | Photo: Briars Atlas

The Deck at Circa is nested on the rooftop of the Prince Hotel, in sun-drenched St Kilda. The Deck itself is an expansive, as you’d imagine, deck, with a large covered interior space, and access to some of the other incredible events and wedding spaces inside the Prince Hotel.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
The Deck website: https://theprince.com.au/prince-deck/
The Deck wedding gallery: The Deck Circa Wedding
Venue size: Sit down – 120 guests. Cocktail – 500 guests

9. Quat Quatta – Art Deco Wedding Venue

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
Quat Quatta| Wedding Venue Location: Ripponlea | Photo: Briars Atlas

Quat Quatta contains some of the most jaw-droppingly beautiful interiors and exteriors around (check out Burnham Beeches for another), and the breadth of portrait opportunities on-site both inside and outside are unbeatable. A festooned outdoor area makes for a glorious intimate ceremony space, before the party is carried inside, making the combination of these things raise Quat Quatta as the best art deco venue Melbourne has going.

But, let’s just hold off on all the adjectives and hyperbole for a hot damn minute, though: because something about this venue in particular isn’t talked about nearly enough: the bridal suites.

These old heritage rooms at the wings of Quat Quatta, apart from being a pretty splendid place to get all that bridal-suite stuff done (application of bandaids, eating of cupcakes, necking of champagne, and whatever else goes on in there), are totally gorgeous and a way under-appreciated part of the venues makeup, and one of my favourite areas of the building to take portraits on the day.

Quat Quatta is a place of wild charm and a more traditional-looking outpost that holds more than it’s own with plenty of variety. Check out this Quat Quatta wedding for a lay of the land. One of the most majestic art deco reception venues Melbourne has on offer.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Quat Quatta websitewww.quatquatta.com.au
Quat Quatta wedding gallery: Quat Quatta wedding
Venue size: Pretty big, mate. 300 seated, 450 standing (Across two physical spaces)

10. Luminare – Rooftop Wedding Venue

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Luminare| Wedding Venue Location: South Melbourne | Photo: Briars Atlas

Luminare is a wedding venue in Melbourne that has become something of a go-to for all things lush and grand, and I find that folks who are drawn to Luminare are also drawn to The Deck (up above) and The George Ballroom (further down this page).

Luminare is a giant, high-roofed events and wedding space, with an enormous deck that runs the full length of the floor, set against their iconic view of the city. This boutique wedding venue is located just a stones throw from the Melbourne CBD.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Luminare website: https://luminare.net.au/
Luminare Wedding gallery: Luminare Wedding
Venue size: 250 guests seated, 500 guests cocktail

11. Brunswick Mess Hall – Quirky Wedding Venue

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
Brunswick Mess Hall | Wedding Venue Location: Brunswick | Photo: Briars Atlas

Brunswick mess hall is a gritty casual warehouse wedding venue in the heart of Brunswick. Somewhat akin in functionality to it’s spiritual cousin Revolver in Prahran, the Brunswick Mess Hall is a restaurant by day, and party-space by night when a wedding is on. Minus the next new thing in electro-dubstep resetting everyones resting heart-rate, or coke-buzzed charlitans in the urinal offering you the key to manifesting abundance.

Brunswick Mess Hall has some of the most gorgeous natural light coming through later in the day, and some brilliant portrait locations in the surrounding streets that make a quick quest out into this quirky neighbourhood at sunset deliver an abundance of opportunities without dragging you away from the party for too long.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Brunswick Mess Hall website: https://thebrunswickmesshall.com.au/
Brunswick Mess Hall Wedding Gallery: On Polka Dot Bride
Venue size: 130 guests seated, 200 guests cocktail

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Brunswick Mess Hall Wedding | Wedding Venue Location: Brunswick | Photo: Briars Atlas

12. Fortyfive Downstairs – Gallery Wedding Venue

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
45 Downstairs | Wedding Venue Location: Melbourne City | Photo: Briars Atlas

Fortyfive Downstairs is Melbournes best Art Gallery Wedding Venue, and one of the most unique venues Melbourne has on offer. At first glance, for the parents out there, it might bring up the hairs on the back of the neck in the same way that letting toddlers loose around fine china does, but the reality of the space is quite the opposite.

Fortyfive Downstairs is a warming, welcoming space with beautiful rotating art on it’s walls, sat a few floors up from it’s incredible, cavernous warehouse space in the basement.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Fortyfive Downstairs website: https://www.fortyfivedownstairs.com/
Fortyfive Downstairs Wedding Gallery: Fortyfive Downstairs wedding
Venue size: 160 guests seated, 300 guests cocktail

13. Glasshaus – Jungle Wedding Venue

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
Glasshaus Wedding | Wedding Venue Location: Richmond | Photo: Briars Atlas

Glasshaus has two distinct wedding event spaces: Glasshaus Inside, and Glasshaus Outside.

Fun fact: Glasshaus inside has an outside outside of Inside’s inside, and inside Glasshaus Outside Glasshaus Inside could probably fit.

Etc.

Glasshaus is something of a beautiful aviary in a jungle, and nearly tucked inside a front that doesn’t lend you any idea of it being there.

Glasshaus Inside is a warehouse jungle, and no other descriptors will do any justice to the space. If you’re looking for venues similar to Rupert on Rupert, this is the answer south of the river.

See more at this Glasshaus Wedding

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Glasshaus website: https://www.fortyfivedownstairs.com/
Venue size: 88 guests seated, 125 guests cocktail

14. George Ballroom – Ballroom Wedding Venue

Best Wedding Venues Melbourne
The George Ballroom Wedding | Wedding Venue Location: St Kilda | Photo: Briars Atlas

The George Ballroom is one of the most decadent wedding venues going, and a brilliant example of just how incredible and modular a single room can be. Iconic textured, distressed walls and fixtures, and much like Rupert, the kind of place you can just point a phone camera at in any direction and come out with art.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
The George Ballroom website: https://www.thegeorgeballroom.com.au/
Venue size: 150 guests seated, 200 guests cocktail

15. Altar Electric – Vegas Chapel Wedding Venue

Alternative Wedding Venues Melbourne
The Altar Electric | Wedding Venue Location: Collingwood | Photo: Briars Atlas

Before pandemics and global disarray, The Altar Electric were ahead of the curve before flattening it was a thing, serving up small, intimate weddings in their brilliant chapel in Collingwood, designed by the genius event and wedding stylists over at Good Day Club. There are always new wedding venues Melbourne has popping up, but these folk stand out from the rest.

The Altar Electric is a wedding chapel for three kinds of folks:

1 – Couples who were probably going to book a registry wedding, but wanted a little bit more sass to the occassion

2 – Couples who want Australias answer to the Vegas Chapel wedding

3 – Couples who want to get in, get it done in an incredible and colourful way, and get out into enjoying their day together around Fitzroy and Collingwood

The Altar Electric is one of the most unique venues Melbourne has going, providing everything from intimate shotgun weddings, all the way up to options for a larger number of guests inside the peach-toned walls of their tiny chapel.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
The Altar Electric website: https://www.thealtarelectric.com.au/
The Altar Electric Wedding Gallery: The Altar Electric Wedding
Venue size: 30, to up to 70 if the outside area is used

16. Fyansford Paper Mill – Heritage Wedding Venue

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
Fyansford Paper Mill Site 2A | Wedding Venue Location: Geelong | Photo: Briars Atlas

I had to include this one for all the Lord of the Rings fans out there. This doesn’t quite fit the bill for Melbourne, as it’s just outside of it, but is a secret worth checking out. Before I give the exact location as a potential turn-off, it’s worth saying that if you can stomach sitting in traffic on Punt Rd for an hour to move just 150 metres, then you can also put up with making your way over to Geelong to this beauty, and there’s no trip more worthy.

I still believe Fyansford Paper Mill is one of our real undiscovered gems that should be right at the top of any wedding venue consideration inside Victoria, and unfortunately it’s even tough to get a sense of how brilliant this place is from a proper google search, you almost have to just roll up and see it for yourself.

Cavernous interior, split into two distinct spaces joined by what is an iconic archway in between them, it’s impossible to think this place exists just a short roadie out of the city.

Fyansford Paper Mill – otherwise known ever so romantically as Site 3A – is run by prolific caterers and party-starters Truffleduck.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
Fyansford Paper Mill Website: Truffleduck
Fyansford Paper Mill Wedding Gallery: Fyansford Paper Mill Wedding
Venue size: 30, to up to 70 if the outside area is used

17. The Line – Warehouse Wedding Venue

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
The Line Footscray | Wedding Venue Location: Footscray | Photo: Briars Atlas

The Line in Footscray takes all the grit, texture, and industrial charm of recently gentrifying Footscray and… leaves all it the fuck alone.

Perfect.

Just as every developer with a string of graduate architects are discovering Fisher and Paykel My First Geometry lessons on exterior cladding in the suburb, the folks at The Line have kept the original spirit of the area alive in this rough around the edges gem of a wedding venue.

The Line is a blank-canvas wedding venue, and you know you’re in good hands when the venue is run by a team that also see their space used regularly for community, arts, and market events, which is something of a rarity.

To see The Line in action, pick yourself up a copy of the September 2020 edition of Hello May, where you can see the gorgeous and colourful celebration of Pepe and Sam gracing it’s pages.

Enquire about their Melbourne Wedding Packages
The Line Website: https://www.theline.melbourne/
The Line Wedding Gallery: Hello May Wedding Photographer
Venue size: Up to 200 people

Unique Wedding Venues Melbourne
The Line Wedding | Wedding Venue Location: Footscray | Photo: Briars Atlas

There. 17 (seventeen) of the best alternative wedding venues in Melbourne, for lovers and anarchists.

Author: Briars Atlas. Photos may be used with a link back to this website.

This made the list a little late, but be sure to also check out this Two Ton Max wedding. For unique wedding venues in new South Wales, check out this beautiful Sydney Theatre Company wedding. For a unique Mornington Peninsula wedding venue, you need to check out Tanglewood Estate.

Alex Perry Wedding Dresses

Oct 9, 2020

Alex Perry Wedding Dresses challenge any ideas of convention around bridal couture. So much so that this one wasn’t even in their wedding category! This incredible Alex Perry Wedding Dress was seen in another part of the Alex Perry catalogue, and Liv immediately knew it would be the perfect wedding dress.

Liv and Adams beautiful Melbourne wedding was photographed by Briars Atlas and featured inside the pages of Together Journal and you can purchase it here in issue #19, and their incredible sense of style has also been picked up worldwide and seen on Yahoo and Popsugar.

Thanks to Liv and Adam for having me down for your brilliant day in the beautiful gritty centre of Melbourne.

Livs Alex Perry Wedding Dress is also featured in my post on the 5 best modern wedding dresses.

Alex Perry Wedding Dresses
Alex Perry Wedding Dresses
Alex Perry Wedding Dresses
Alex Perry Wedding Dresses
Alex Perry Wedding Dresse
Alex Perry Wedding Dresses
Alex Perry Wedding Dresses
Alex Perry Wedding Dresses

See more Alex Perry Wedding Dresses

Alex Perry Wedding Dresses online: https://www.alexperry.com.au/pages/stockist-bride

Seen on Vogue

Check out Zoe and Adams Blue Mountains wedding here on Vogue, and also Elishas gown in this beautiful Zonzo Estate wedding.

Hire me to photograph your wedding

Briars Atlas Wedding Photography: Enquire

Vogue Wedding

Oct 8, 2020

Here’s a preview of the gorgeous Vogue Wedding of Zoe and Adam married at the incredible Leura Amphitheatre in the Blue Mountains, before heading over to their wedding reception at the Hydro Majestic Hotel. These two adventurers and sweethearts wear everything on their sleeves, maybe best shown when Adam took a detour with Zoe and their crew into a private room before their reception at the Hydro Majestic, where the Blue Mountains String Quartet played a piece that Adam had written with them in secret ahead of time. Magic stuff.

Thanks Vogue Australia for sharing these two marvels. See their full Vogue wedding feature here.

Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Hydro Majestic Blue Mountains Wedding
Hydro Majestic Blue Mountains
Hydro Majestic Blue Mountains on Vogue
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
Vogue Wedding
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Vogue Wedding

See their full Vogue Wedding

See more information on Blue Mountains Wedding Photography.

grazing table ideas

Sep 22, 2020

Last year I worked with Cassie and the team at Firecracker event (also here on my list of incredible Melbourne caterers), who had created the most majestic grazing table i’ve seen anywhere, let alone in Melbourne, for Liv and Dave’s engagement party in an iconic Melbourne art gallery. The result looked like something of a collaboration between the lush perfection of Annie Leibovitz and impossible symmetry and theatre of Wes Anderson, so I had to ask her how her brain works, how we can capture a slice of it for ourselves, and what genius ideas she has for creating your own grazing table or spread, especially as Covid-19 has cast some uncertainty over what they will even look like in the short to mid-term: how do we create a Covid Friendly Grazing Table?

best grazing table ideas firecracker event


To that end, Cassie has been generous in sharing some of her own feelings about what solutions there might be and what questions to ask when navigating the scenario of sharing food communally.

Firecracker event’s slogan is “to nourish, connect, and create” and it’s such a treat to have a chat with someone that has their hands plenty full servicing all three of those across a catering business and a venue, both of which have had to be elastic and forward-thinking during covid19 (when for a little while, maybe the only thing on the table is an elopement).

Who are you, whats your background and journey been like to lead you to where you are: a culinary powerhouse with a cheeky venue on the side?

My name is Cassie Lucas and I am the owner and creative director of Firecracker Event. The journey to get where I am today is a long story with a meandering path but in a nutshell it goes like this; born into a loving and affectionate social-foodie family with roots in hospitality, a childhood of caring and nurturing (both receiving and giving) followed by a degree and career in landscape architecture with time spent here and abroad all culminated in me starting Firecracker Event in 2012 and officially launching it as my full-time gig in September 2013. 

Our big studio, that we call HQ (stands for heart-quarters as much as head-quarters) is used for all of our event preparation and photoshoots.

During covid HQ has been home to Pick Me Up, our take home meal service and has also become a temporary home for an ice cream van which is fun!

Whats the most rewarding element of what you do? 

That’s easy. Seeing people experience and be nourished by the food and atmosphere we create. 

Especially relevant now – what motivates you to do what you do, and how has this been challenged lately?

best grazing table ideas firecracker event

Our motivation has always been to make people feel loved and seen. That hasn’t changed during this time, in fact it’s been more important than ever. Many people feel isolated and unsettled by uncertainty and rapid change.

We do too!

When the pandemic hit my first instinct was ok, how can we pivot and continue to nourish our community while we can’t be together physically? From that place we launched PICK ME UP, which is a take-home meals collaboration with seven other local, small businesses who we love.

It started out as a gift we could give to our community and quickly became a gift we received as so many people showed up to support us and allowed us to safely stay connected and nourished by one another.

This helped keep our business going and has given us all a sense of purpose which has been invaluable for our mental wellbeing. It’s been a beautiful and reciprocal exchange. 

Let’s talk about that majestic spread you made for Liv and Dave. Sometimes there’s a beautiful intersection of space, style and food-design, and for me this was one of those really rare intersections. It looked so impossibly considered and it’s the only food item I’ve ever stood in front of and thought “I think we need Annie Leibovitz in to cover this”. Can you run me through how the idea came about, how much of yourselves and the couple was in it?

best grazing table ideas firecracker event

You’re so right! It was such a beautiful intersection. This will be a forever favourite for sure. Liv and Dave know the owner of the antique gallery and when we went for a site inspection, I was blown away by the visual feast around each corner of the gallery. 

best grazing table ideas firecracker event

One of the many things I’ve carried with me from Landscape Architecture is allowing the site to speak and designing with site specificity. This keeps every day really exciting for us because it means that every grazing table is unique. It also means that when we are in a space like Graeme Geddes Gallery – it’s about sourcing props and produce that will work with the space. Not take away or dominate it.

This grazing table had some gorgeous smaller moments you experience when you’re up close (like cutting a piece of cheese)  but then also for the overall wow- expansive view. You managed to capture that so beautifully. 

If you could in general describe the expression on peoples faces when they saw the spread, what 80s song would be the soundtrack to that expression? Im thinking wind-in-face, slow motion white snake, Michael bolton, over to you….

Haha! Love this. Really made me think though!

Not Michael Bolton, I think it needs more drama/ energy than that! 

I have transported myself to the nights at Cherry Bar in ACDC lane in Melbourne circa 2003 to answer this question. I think it’s more 80’s glam metal, OTT outfits, hair, sets, personalities and expressions!! 

Perhaps Pour Some Sugar on Me by Def Leppard or Panama by Van Halen. 

What is your usual process for creating the perfect spread for one of your couples, and how do you craft it to their personality, as well as infuse yourself in it?

I like to talk to our clients about what they love to eat, how they dine at home and what family rituals they have. We always do our best to make it feel like it’s their table.

Our use of certain props, like acrylic blocks for height, has really become a signature of Firecracker so there’s always signs of us in our work, that’s what people hire us for!

Have you ever had any interesting, left of centre spread requests that you can divulge without risking a call from ASIO et-al?

We had a client that wanted us to make grazing tables for 3000 people in a car park. I was so pumped about the potential but it didn’t go ahead in the end. 

What are some common mistakes you see made by folks creating a spread, and what is in your opinion the most underrated inclusion?

 Filling the entire table, edge to edge doesn’t allow the produce to shine. It’s like everything is competing for attention and if there’s one thing I know about Delice, it does not need to compete on a table.

This can also be confronting and confusing for guests as they don’t know what to pick and feel intimidated to touch anything in feat of ‘ruining’ the table. What I would say is, do not be afraid of space. If you have some ‘air’ or ‘zones’ for the hero products it becomes more accessible for guests. 

The most underrated inclusion is grapes. The way they fall does so much for how your eye moves across a table. We get a bit sad when they are out of season! 

What would be your dream scenario to create an incredible spread in or on? Excluding one full of gobstoppers and industrial strength-toffee on the current whitehouse desk, because, you know, the ASIO thing, I guess.

I would love to create a grazing table on the highline in New York. It’s a public garden that’s been built on an old lightrail train line. I can imagine where parts of the table are wildflowers and then produce so when you look at it, it forms a part of the landscape.

I would also love to make a gallery sized exhibition of grazing. On plinths, with color, lots of height changes. Dramatic lighting. Lots of smaller moments or rooms of grazing. And Lazy Susans. And I’ve been getting into monochrome grazing tables over the last 12 months. 

Can someone help make this happen?! 

With all the isolation, how can folks at home think about creating the perfect grazing table or spreads for small gatherings?

As with all foods, buy the best that you can.

A small piece of something outrageous is better than a slab of an unripe brie. 

What are your general top tips for making the perfect “scream from the mountain tops” grazing table or spread?

The same principles work for a grazing table for 100 as they do for 2 people.

This is the landscape architecture practice of scale. 

My three tips for creating the best grazing table or spread are:

  1. Buy odd numbers of cheese: ie three, five, or just one delicious morsel.
  2. Build the board – and use a hierarchy – (start with what’s most important or what you want to have more air time. Cheese, obvs). Arrange items in a zigzag on the board – start with cheese, then fruit, then meat/and antipasto, dried fruit, nuts then biscuits last. 
  3. Create sweet and savory sections. ie blue and soft cheese with grapes, nuts and fruit, and antipasto/charcuterie with harder cheeses. 

This isn’t a question but I think it’s worth acknowledging the death of grazing tables. 

How will people experience grazing tables in the new COVID normal?

Are guests going to want to share food? 

To cut cheese with the same knife as another person? 

To be in close proximity to another person discussing what looks good on the table? 

Will tables just be for looking but not for touching? 

We’ve been thinking a lot about what this looks like and how will we facilitate that same 1980’s WOW expression? 

We are thinking that it will be more individual serves. But you know, maybe it’s bigger/longer tables with social distancing and that could be really interesting for how we arrange and curate the produce. 

We are workshopping some samples. Stay tuned! 

But I think that this makes this particular grazing table even more special because who knows if we will be able to create something like this (to be enjoyed and eaten) again. 

Hire Firecracker Event for your Covid Friendly Grazing Table

https://www.firecrackerevent.com/
https://www.instagram.com/firecrackerevent
87-88 South Cres, Northcote VIC 3070

If you like this glorious space, you might also like Quat Quatta

Melbournes best wedding celebrants

Sep 15, 2020

Melbourne wedding celebrant: finding a great one is challenging, and it’s hard to get an idea of whether their vibe is gonna fit your tribe ahead of time. The Celebrant A List is an initiative put together to help solve that, and their Celebrant A-List Ball which I joined majestic celebrant-ey forces with last year, brought together a whole swag of the industries best under one roof in Melbourne.

Since we had so many luminaries of the industry packed into one of Melbournes best bars, it would’ve been rude not to set up a Vanity Fair style photo-corner.

I’ve been super lucky to work with many of these maestros, so read on and enjoy these community marvels and a little insight into the Celebrant A List, and then hire one for your Melbourne elopement.

Jac the Hitcher

Lord of the dark-funk, Jac the Hitcher lives here.

Matt Finch

Grandmaster suave, Matt Finch lives here and also at this beautiful Melbourne gay wedding of Sam and Paul.

This is a little chat with the Celebrant A-List founder, Anthony Cribbes, about why it exists and how it benefits the Melbourne wedding community.

If you want to skip the gab (not recommended, but hey, it’s your life), here’s a run-sheet of some of the best Melbourne wedding celebrants that are featured here (in no order):

Top Celebrant Melbourne

  1. Anthony Cribbes
  2. Nat Sproal
  3. Charis White
  4. Celebrant Ladylove
  5. The Wedding Anarchist
  6. Matt Finch
  7. Sean Whelan
  8. Zena Lythgow
  9. Jac the Hitcher
  10. Jessie Belle
  11. Megan Thompson
  12. Damon Hughes
  13. Shannon Jeans
  14. Megan Watson
  15. Pete the Celebrant
  16. Rachael Calvert
  17. Sweet Wonderful You

Celebrant Ladylove

Lord of all things neon and dark in the wedding celebrant world, find Annie here.

Marry Me Sean

As well as being found under an excellent hat, known as one of the Best Marriage Celebrants Melbourne has on offer, you can find Sean here.


What is the Celebrant A list?

On paper it’s a directory with some hand picked celebrants. Maybe it’s also an antidote to the ‘come one come all’ sites that I find just end up causing us much confusion and anxiety for couples who are by and large going through this process for the first time.

BUT what it actually is a chance to be a little different in the market. All of the directory members are people from my own and some other close confidant’s personal networks.

These were people we already were swapping leads with. So whilst it’s not the definitive and finite list of who’s a quality melbourne wedding celebrant, I can definitely say that all members are quality people and celebrants.

Megan Thompson

As well as being found wrapped in curtains, Megan can be found here.

Megan Watson

Megan is pointing over there, and to find her we’re pointing here.

How can couples getting engaged best benefit from the A list in finding a Melbourne wedding celebrant?

So the Celebrant A List is also a little community group. We all know which other members are better suited for which kind of couple just based on the initial enquiry.

So my advice would be to get on the directory, to find the kind of wedding celebrant you think fits the bill and send them an enquiry.

If they’re not available, we work as a group to find you someone that is not only free but will also fit what you are looking for.

Rachael Calvert

This legendary Tasmanian wedding celebrant can be found here.

Pete the Celebrant

This totally debonair devil can be found here.

It seems to be something of an army. Any favourite cult leaders that were referenced?

Is Brian Jones or David Koresh a funny or poor tasting joke?! Nah but in all honesty, the crew on the Wedding Celebrant A List is from the network of wedding celebrants who were already naturally jelling together.

Everyone on the list is vouched for – we avoid cult like activities, thinking and environments, we feel the market for that is already catered for!

The Wedding Anarchist

Formerly known as Marry Me Dee, and if you want colour and jazz, maybe the best marriage celebrant has going. Find her here and here.

Damon Hughes

Not just a good looking rack for short-shorts, maybe the best marriage celebrant Melbourne has on offer, find him here.

The marketplace is getting more and more flooded across all vendors. This makes it not only more challenging for a couple in sifting through available options, but also challenging as a vendor trying to create a sustainable business. How do you see the creation of this network as fundamentally addressing both of those challenges?

Haha, what a question! If I was to say what was the mission of the Wedding Celebrant A List, it would be to address exactly this challenge.

We have moved from a world where once upon a time we had to wait until every Thursday night at 7:30PM before our favourite show would be on…now I can binge watch whatever I want, whenever I want.

This is how society works now, so the Wedding Celebrant A List is the kind of place where people can come and not only can we help them feel less overwhelmed we also support each other’s businesses.

Sweet Wonderful You

With her name an homage to Fleetwood Mac, find Erin here.

Anthony Cribbes

You’ve seen young ‘Tony a lot around these parts, and if a modern James Bond is your vibe, maybe the best marriage celebrant in Melbourne. Find him here and here.


It’s for this reason alone why we don’t have hundreds and hundreds of members as we genuinely feel like in the end that helps no one – the couples or the celebrants.

As I already mentioned, just by enquiring with one us, we’re kind of all there to help you find not only the right celebrant but also many other vendors.

We all buy based on people giving us recommendations, it’s kind of the same approach over at the Wedding Celebrant A List.

Shannon Jeans

This rainbow pocket rocket can be found here. Also see her in action at this Two Ton Max wedding we both worked on.

Nat Sproal

Lord mistress of all things hilarious, Nat lives here and here. I also worked with this brilliant mofo at this Fortyfive Downstairs wedding.

You held the Celebrant Melbourne A List ball over Christmas, which was an epic event with the best Melbourne Wedding Celebrants in town: whats next on the cards?

Well before good ol’ Rona hit the plan was to try and host an event in each major city where we have representation. But now we’re focussed on our big event next year, Hitchmas.

We plan on making this the best business workshop/networking/party kind of event ever hosted in the wedding world.

Charis White

I’ve worked with this gem many a time, possibly the best marriage celebrant Melbourne has around, you can find Charis here, and we’re featured together on Suzanne Harward.

Jessie Belle

This cartwheeling legend can be found here

Where to find the best marriage celebrant Melbourne has on offer?

Head back up through this post and click through to any of the brilliant Melbourne wedding celebrants websites.

Find the Wedding Celebrant A List online

Finding a Melbourne wedding celebrant can be a bit of a massive task – fortunately, the Wedding Celebrant A List has been assembled to take some of the legwork out of it. Verified legends, take a look and find your Melbourne wedding celebrant below, and then get them down for your Melbourne city elopement.

The Celebrant A List website
The Celebrant A List Instagram

Link one of these legends up with a brilliant Melbourne wedding planner, and with the brilliant minds of Firecracker Event an incredible grazing table.

best wedding florist melbourne

Sep 3, 2020

Babiana Botanic makes incredible, unique floral designs, thanks to the fine-art background of it’s founder, Anna. We worked together on the wedding of Pepe and Sam at The Line (officiated by Nat Sproal), and we chat a little about her incredibly unique approach to Melbourne florals.

To see more of her impossibly innovative work, check out the wedding of Pepe and Sam featured here (Hello May Wedding Photographer), available on news stands today.

babiana Botanic wedding at The Line Footscray
From Pepe and Sam, featured in print on Hello May

So who are you, what do your friends think you do, and what do you actually do?

babiana botanic melbourne florist

I’m Anna of Babiana Botanic. Most people think working with flowers “must be so lovely and relaxing!”

And yeah, sure – I love what I do and it is at times, lovely and relaxing – but its also 3am wake-ups to get the best flowers at market, long days creating arrangements, carrying buckets up and down stairs of beautiful old venues that don’t have lift access, hands covered in cuts, 1am pack-downs – it can be a brutal job – which just shows you’ve got to really love it – and I do!

I have a Bachelor of Fine Art and have always loved flowers and nature.

My love of Art Nouveau inspired me into the floristry industry where I can create works of art with nature, for people on their wedding days or for other amazing events.

What excites you most about the culture of weddings in Melbourne?

babiana botanic

I love doing weddings in Melbourne because it is such a melting pot of people. It means you get such a wide range of clients with a diverse set of needs. There are also so many creative people in Melbourne who want a wedding that stands out and is unique to them.

It means that I get to create amazing colourful weddings, weddings with nods to the couples cultures (Indian, Macedonian, etc), and contemporary weddings that are a little different.

What do you feel separates Babiana Botanic from those around you in your line of work?

What makes Babiana Botanic special is that we are not afraid to use colour and create something unique. We like to think about flowers as an art form and creating works of art specific to each couple.

How have you kept your business healthy during Covid, and how might couples now benefit from it?

We’ve been offering flower delivery to people’s homes during this time off so that we are still working with flowers and offering something to brighten people’s days. We’ve also been in contact and working with all of our couples who have had to postpone their weddings and events to ensure we can go ahead when all these restrictions ease.

How do you see the future of celebrations in our city and what mark do you want to leave on it?

babiana botanic melbourne florist

I think post-covid, there will be a move towards more intimate weddings with just your closest family and friends, and a move away from feeling the need for a big wedding where you have to invite your third-cousin-twice-removed and that friend you haven’t seen since high-school.

I love colour and doing things differently – and that’s the mark I would like to leave. I want couples to come to me wanting beautiful, quirky, colourful and different designs.

Find Babiana Botanic

Babiana Botanic website: https://www.babianabotanic.com/

Head to this post for more incredible unique florists in Melbourne.

babiana botanic melbourne florist
Castlemaine Wedding Venues

Aug 13, 2020

These are four of my favourite Castlemaine Wedding Venues, including photos taken at each of brilliant couples choosing to have their wedding in this rustic region.

It’s really late at night, and i’m writing this article for you, dear human-person, on the other end, and i’m supposed to use all this coercive langue that apparently makes internet websites more engaging and all that (“you’ll never BELIEVE how rusticly-rustic to the power of rustic these are”), but, let’s skip all that cheap shit and get to the point, because you’re better than that (it’s a Castlemaine thing).

Castlemaine is incredibly rad, otherwise you wouldn’t be on this post or considering a wedding in the area, and I want to share some great spaces from this totally marvellous region.

I’ve spent a tonne of time out there, and as a general thing within the universe, a visit to it is generally recognised as being far more desirable than a slap over the noggin with a wet fish, so have a look at these scallywags that thought the same, and hire me to shoot your wedding.

The Best Castlemaine wedding venues

1. Providence Gully
2. Butterland Newstead
3. The Diggers Store
4. The Cosmopolitan hotel

1. Providence Gully

Providence gully is a gem of the area, an incredible oasis established in 1858. With a rustic barn, olive grovee, pomegranite orchards and an endless variety of native greenery, this understated marvel is a must see.

I photographed the wedding of Amy and Bronson, held in this precious place, and featured in all it’s glory on Hello May.

Find Providence Gully

Providence Gully website: http://providencegully.com.au/

2. Butterland Newstead

Katie (othewise known at the inimitable Katie Marx flowers – see her here on Melbournes best wedding florists) and Greg run Butterland Newstead, and took it from an historic factory needing a little DIY love, into and incredibly versatile venue just one good road trip out of Melbourne

Iro and Alex got married at this spectacular property, and you can see more of these hilarious, stylish marvels featured here on Together Journal.

Find Butterland Newstead

Butterland Newstead website: https://www.butterland.com.au/

3. The Diggers Store

The Diggers Store is something of an understated gem of the area, and resembles something of an impossible mix of tiny italian clifftop homestead, mixed with rustic outback, and just a couple of hours north of Melbourne.

After their Queenstown Elopement (also featured here on Hello May), Lilli and Jake brought the party, and their beautiful community, to the intimate grounds of the Diggers Store in Castlemaine, and loaded up with a bunch of strange old film cameras (see here why I shoot film at weddings) I came along for the ride to document it.

Find the Diggers Store

The Diggers Store website: http://www.thediggersstore.com.au/

4. The Cosmopolitan Hotel

This one slipped into this post, just. Even though it’s about 40 minutes outside of Castlemaine, it still qualifies and is well worth adding to the Castlemaine venue consideration pile. Home of beautiful hospitality, wood-fired pizzas, and plenty of beautiful portrait locations in the surrounding regions to run around in. Go for the woodfired pizzas, and get married on the side.

Kara and Marty had their Castlemaine wedding at the Cosmopolitan hotel in Trentham, and we whipped out for a beautiful portrait session in some unique spots nearby. Head here to see more of their Cosmopolitan Hotel wedding.

Find the Cosmopolitan hotel

The Cosmopolitan Hotel Trentham website: https://www.thecosmopolitanhotel.com.au/

Dan and Dre – see my shoot with them here.

What do your couples constantly say about you and C2 Films?

Couples love my dedication, they love that I’m all in, all the time. Approachable and make them feel at ease almost immediately.

I live by the motto that the ‘sun rises and sets with the couple’ and if anyone tries to fuck with that, I’ll burn them.

C2 Films Wedding videographers melbourne
More of Dan and Dre in this post about how to take dark and moody wedding photos.

What do you wish couples said about you?

That I was handsome, strong, dark and moody… creative genius battling inner demons.

C2 Films Wedding videographers melbourne
Dan and Dre – see my shoot with them here.

The thing you found out about yourself in ISO?

That I can’t sit still, that I cannot change or affect my world from my keyboard at home.

I need to move, thus taking up a tradie job (renovation) to throw shit around… and discovering that the boys onsite do it hard for very little, and that I’m fucking blessed to get paid for what I do in the wedding game.

What’s your preferred method of apocalypse aversion and the one movie you’d bring to the bunker to watch forever?

Samsara (daughter) would be my go-to movie, for I’m not at the beginning or and the end, I’m just here…

Find C2 Films online:


https://www.c2films.com.au/
C2 films on Instagram

See more C2 Films Wedding Videos

Hire me to photograph your wedding alongside C2 Films

Briars Atlas Wedding Photography

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne

Jul 13, 2020

Here’s a rundown of some of my favourite Melbourne wedding photo locations, organised by the mood they give, to show you what brilliant variety we have in our own inner city for weddings: from gritty industrial, all the way over to the most incredible nature within a stones throw of the Melbourne CBD. Included in all locations are Google Maps pins.

These are my top 15 Melbourne wedding photo locations (I have plenty more hidden gems, but you’ll just have to head out on foot and go exploring yourself to find them).

Be sure to tune in for the very last one – some of my favourite little slices of Melbourne alleys. If you’re getting hitched in the city or inner city or eloping in Melbourne, I know these like the back of my hand as well as a whole bunch of wonderful other little known spots.

These are somewhat more popular locations, but when looking at where to take photos in Melbourne i’ve found they’re ripe for putting a unique spin on each and every time, especially if you’re planning a Melbourne elopement.

  1. Melbourne Treasury building
  2. Treasury Gardens
  3. Collingwood back streets
  4. Carlton Alleys
  5. Thornbury
  6. Northcote Town Hall
  7. That Fonda wall
  8. Portland Lane
  9. South Melbourne
  10. Abbotsford
  11. Fitzroy Gardens
  12. Carlton Gardens
  13. Historic Prahran
  14. Footscray
  15. Best Melbourne Alleys

1. Melbourne Treasury Building

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Natasha and Jacobs Melbourne Registry Wedding
Melbourne wedding photo locations
Melbourne wedding photo locations
Melbourne City wedding photo locations
Melbourne City wedding photo locations
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Melbourne City wedding photo locations
Melbourne City wedding photo locations

The Melbourne Treasury building is the go-to photo location for registry weddings in Melbourne, and one of the most iconic spots for Melbourne wedding photos. With its incredible historic design and layout, it’s one of the best places to take photos in Melbourne. What people often miss though, is that the immediate surrounds of the building have the most brilliant wedding photo locations, perfect for rain-shielded photo sessions, sunset sessions, all of it. If you look closely, you can see some of these at this Fortyfive Downstairs wedding.

I take so many couples around here, and it can’t be overstated how beautifully soft and moody the light is around the structures themselves. Head down Treasury place and explore, it’s all an easy and quick whip around, especially if you’re then heading south to somewhere like The Deck at Circa.

Melbourne Treasury Building photo location on Google Maps.


2. Treasury Gardens

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Melbourne Registry wedding – ft Tash and Jacob.

Just west of the Melbourne Treasury building, is the Treasury gardens. While the gardens themselves are beautiful and lush, what I personally prefer from this photo location is to use them as context against the treasury buildings behind it.

Walk about halfway up Treasury Place, head down the paths inserting themselves into the gardens, turn around, and you’ve got beautiful lush greenery depending on the time of year, with the incredible heritage buildings right behind you as the backdrop.

Treasury Gardens Photo Location Google Maps pin.


3. Collingwood back streets

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Find this Collingwood photo location on Google Maps here.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Find this turquoise photo location in Collingwood on Google Maps here.
Collingwood wedding photo locations
Find this corner on Google Maps here. / Tim and Alix at Rupert on Rupert.
Collingwood wedding photo locations
Find this Collingwood Wedding Photo Location on Google Maps here.
Collingwood wedding photo locations
Find this Collingwood photo location on Google Maps here.
Collingwood wedding photo locations
Find this Collingwood wedding photo location on Google Maps here.
Fitzroy wedding photo locations
Find this Collingwood wedding photo location on Google Maps here.
Fitzroy wedding photo locations
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Find this Collingwood building here on Google Maps.

The Collingwood and Fitzroy back streets contain some of our earliest historic houses, since they were the first suburbs inhabited when Melbourne did, well, what we did back then, clear everything and everyone in sight and build lots of stuff.

As a result some of the architecture in the surrounding streets is particularly cute and interesting in equal measure, and make for some of the best Melbourne wedding photo locations.

As a general area, this is a personal favourite and one of the best places to take photos in Melbourne and a go-to for all the best wedding photographers doing their thing.

4. University Lane Carlton

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Carlton wedding photo locations
Carlton wedding photo locations

Something more of a sleeper wedding photo location (ie: more classic, and not immediately striking), Carlton has some understated alleys that are beautiful soft backdrops without fighting the rest of the frame, and an ideal subtle place for Melbourne wedding photos.

Enormous stonework, subtle signage and fittings, the laneways here are worth exploring and just a small dash out of the Melbourne CBD.

One of the best lanes. Find this photo location on Google Maps here.

5. Thornbury

Thornbury wedding photo locations
See more from Sam and Pauls Melbourne gay wedding.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
See this wedding photo location here on Google Maps.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
This wall is just outside Little Henri. See it on Google Maps here.
Kenny Lover wedding photo
Kenny Lover wedding photo
Check out their Kenny lover wedding photos.
Kenny Lover wedding photo
Find this Thornbury photo location on Google Maps here.

One of my favourite general areas in Melbourne, and a brilliant wedding photo location to explore. Further north we hit Thornbury, which has an endless amount of textures, historic structures, and all sorts of weird and wonderful signage and exteriors – oh, and Kenny Lover.

30 minutes here will be spent pretty quickly heading up, down and around High St, with art-deco design left right and centre.

See more of Sam and Pauls wedding on Instagram.

6. Northcote Town Hall

Northcote wedding photo location
Northcote wedding photo location
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne

Find Northcote Town Hall wedding photo location here on Google Maps.

Northcote Town Hall is a must visit for simple Melbourne heritage vibes, beautiful columns and light. If Fitzroy Town Hall isn’t accessible, then this isn’t a compromise as a wedding photo location, and it provides the same kind of feel, shelter from rain, and beautiful soft light, with no chance of being disturbed, and super close proximity to bars, cafes, and all of the standard Northcote glory.

There’s also plenty of beautiful textures and walls to find on Eastment st and Westbourne Grove, down the side of the town hall.

7. Fonda Collingwood

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Collingwood wedding photo location
Collingwood wedding photo location

This one gets a header all of it’s own. The incredible artwork on the side of the Fonda building is a joy to walk past and pop off some frames in front of, and one of the most distinct wedding photo locations around. Punchy, colourful, geometrically satisfying, this is located just off Smith st, with spades of bars and other historic streets right near it.

A great little stopover if you’re getting hitched at Panama Dining Room or Rupert on Rupert.

Find this Collingwood photo location here on google maps.

8. Portland Lane

Melbourne wedding photo location
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Find this moody photo location on Google Maps here.
Melbourne wedding photo location
Find this brutalist photo location on Google Maps here.

I’ve had so many couples stay at the QT Hotel on Russel St, and turning just around to the right of it’s entrance, down Portland Lane, is a no-brainer for some quick portraits when exiting the building to head to the ceremony.

The wall of the Portland Hotel is painted a rich black, and feeds down into deep bluestones below, creating something of an impossible infinity-wall, where it feels like the bluestone is a shelf at the edge of the universe. One of the more unique wedding photo locations in Melbourne.

As if we’re about to lean into the ether, or into Gandalf’s embrace, etc.

9. South Melbourne

South Melbourne wedding photo location
South Melbourne wedding photo location
South Melbourne wedding photo location
South Melbourne wedding photo location
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Enter St Vincents park at the corner of Ferrars st. See it on Google Maps here.
Half Acre Wedding photos
Outside Half Acre. See here for more unique wedding venues in Melbourne.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Find this South Melbourne Wedding Photo Location on Google Maps here.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
See this beaut little spot in South Melbourne near Half Acre on Google Maps here.

Until fairly recently, sweeping sections of South Melbourne have somehow managed to mostly avoid being exploited by our general lack of regulation around architectural design for a suburb so close to the city, and so unlike other heritage suburbs, still has plenty of great things to explore without yet looking like a second-year students first foray into geometric design elements.

As a result, as well as easily feeling like it’s a jaunt into the old world, the entire area around the Town Hall, Clarendon St, and industrial back areas have plenty of textures to explore, and is an ideal wedding photo location just 5 minutes out of the Melbourne CBD.

10. Abbotsford

Abbotsford wedding photo location
Find Dr Morse – an industrial photo location on Google Maps here.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Abbotsford wedding photo location
Enter this spot of Victoria Park at the corner of Turner and Rich st. Be sure to go into the turnstiles. Find this Abbotsford Photo Location on google maps here.
Abbotsford wedding photo location
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
This is at the Yarra Bend Park lookout at sunset. There are incredible little trails hidden all around here with outlooks to the city, it’s worth spending half an hour scouting around.
Find this unique photo location on google maps here.

Abbotsford may just be our closest answer to anything resembling the back streets of New York or Brooklyn (see these Melbourne wedding venues). Abbotsford has it all: incredibly close proximity to Yarra Bend Park (which doesn’t seem like it should or could sit so close to the city), old heritage streets, imposing industrial buildings, and everything in between. Abbotsford is a brilliantly diverse wedding photo location.

A 30 minute session in Abbotsford can get chewed up very quickly, and that’s without stopping off at any of the beautiful little cafes littered around the place. One of the best photo locations in Melbourne, at just a short jump outside of the Melbourne CBD itself.

11. Fitzroy Gardens

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne

Looking at the map, Fitzroy Gardens almost sounds ripped out of a Tolkien book. The Faeries tree, Tudor Village, Temple of the Winds. These are all great, but the best parts of these gardens aren’t etched on the map.

Enter from the midwestern paths along Lansdowne St, and some of the more incredible tree-tunnels are visible, then head further in to a couple of “secret” little jungle areas with tight greenery, stone stairs and more. Gorgeous wedding photo location resembling a jungle.

One of my favourite places for Melbourne wedding photos.

12. Carlton Gardens

Carlton Gardens wedding photo locations
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne

Carlton Gardens join the Royal Exhibition building. Carlton Gardens are more known for the aisle of trees leading up to said building (and a water foutain) but the best parts of these gardens are actually around the northwestern edge of the exhibition building.

Architecturally there’s a bunch of textural options around there, but what I like most is the setting sun against some of the smaller characterful pieces of garden around there.

Find this Carlton photo location on Google Maps here.

13. Prahran

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
This spot is at the rear of Prahran Town Hall.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Prahran wedding photo locations
Swanning down Green St Prahran. Find this Prahran photo location on Google Maps.
Prahran wedding photo locations
Simple concrete – see this quirky photo location at Green St Prahran.
Prahran wedding photo locations
Prahran wedding photo locations
Prahran wedding photo locations
Prahran wedding photo locations
Prahran wedding photo locations
Check out this post about how to take dark and moody wedding photos.

Prahran isn’t necessarily the first place you’d think of when looking for the best Melbourne wedding photo locations, but when I lived there, I made a point of taking any couples eloping here from overseas there, for two reasons.

Firstly there’s more than it’s fair share of architecturally stunning historical charm, and secondly, while there’s the allure of taking portraits in the CBD, in my opinion Prahran punches above it’s weight, and saves all of the regular hassles associated with parking in the city itself, while allowing folks spending a little bit of time here to explore a neighbourhood they might have otherwise missed.

Also, don’t miss this moody art-deco gem. Add Prahran to the list if you’re planning a Melbourne City elopement.

14. Footscray

Footscray wedding photo locations
Footscray wedding photo locations
Footscray wedding photo locations

First stop from the Melbourne CBD as we head west, Footscray is a gritty gem, and enormously misunderstood suburb (especially from our dear friends of the east). All the right ingredients for a subversive photo location.

Footscray has buckets of charm in it’s back streets, and as you head over to Seddon (i’d never heard of it either until I moved there), you’re hit with some of the most incredible cottage-style residences you’ll see in Melbourne.

15. Melbourne Alleys

Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Crossley St in Melbourne CBD. See this photo location on Google Maps.
Melbourne Alley wedding photo locations
Same place as above, directly opposite Ginger Boy.
Melbourne Alley wedding photo locations
This beautiful stone wall is in Guildford Lane, about #5. Find it here on Google Maps.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
This is down heape Ct, Melbourne CBD, where the old Church of Bang Bang Boogaloo (RIP) was situated. Find this Melbourne lane photo location here on Google Maps.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
This is a lane to the right of 91 Spring St. A little obscured, follow it down and it feeds into all sorts of other interesting little bits. Perfect urban open shade and lines. See this best photo location on Google Maps here.
Melbourne Alley wedding photo locations
Melbourne Alley wedding photo locations
Melbourne Alley wedding photo locations
I can’t remember where this is. Soz. Follow wherever office workers are having smokos.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Ridgeway Place, Melbourne CBD. See this unique photo location on Google Maps here.
Best wedding photo locations in Melbourne
Can’t remember where this is, but, I mean, just pick any driveway really.
Pellegrinis wedding photo
Pellegrinis wedding photo
Opposite the inimitable Pellegrinis, same as #1.

The pièce de résistance. Melbourne has bucketloads of beautiful alleys, and the main choices become things like how much heritage do you want, vs graffiti, vs tourists, vs calm.

All of the major alleys have their own character as a wedding photo location, and at any quarter of the CBD there’s a good handful within walking distance, and are usually crowned as the best Melbourne wedding photo locations.

These aren’t necessarily the “main events” here (sorry), i’m instead sharing some of my favourite Melbourne wedding photo locations containing simple light, and simple texture. For more of my secret ones, keep an eye on my melbourne wedding photography workshops.

Fyansford Paper Mill Site 3a

Jul 11, 2020

The Fyansford Paper Mill (otherwise known as the Old Paper Mills or Site 3a by Truffleduck) hosts weddings and events just outside of Geelong in the historic corner of Fyansford at Provenance Wines, in what is an absolute little treasure of the area, just minutes from the Geelong city centre. Take a look at this Fyansford Paper Mill Wedding Pre-enactment with the inimitable Georgie Boy.

I spent half a day in it’s incredible stone walls with Melbourne florist Gina (Georgie Boy), making use of the space and each of us following our noses in our respective crafts, with no end-goal in mind but to make something together in the 3 hours spent there. More from this shoot and a little short-film we created at the papermill to be released soon.

Scroll to the bottom for information on hiring for a Fyansford Paper Mill Wedding (or epic battle, midnight ritual, the world’s your oyster).

Fyansford Paper Mill Site 3a Wedding
Fyansford Paper Mill Site 3a main room divider
Red Rose
Fyansford Paper Mill Wedding
Fyansford Paper Mill Site 3a
Georgie Boy Florist
Georgie Boy Florist
Georgie Boy Florist
Georgie Boy Florist
Georgie Boy Florist
Moor dark and moody wedding photos here.
Fyansford Paper Mill Site 3a Wedding

Book your Fyansford Paper Mill wedding

Fyansford Paper Mill Site 3a is managed by Truffleduck catering.

Fyansford Paper Mill is something of an internet enigma, and has less of a presence than you might expect for a venue that resembles an impossibly beautiful run-down italian castle, just sitting at the edge of Geelong.

Dating back to the precincts industrial era, the Fyansford Paper Mills look like something more likely to have been plucked from the minds of Peter Jacksons set-design team than a venue just outside of Melbourne that you can actually hire for your wedding: enormous wooden beams, an impossibly high entrance divider between the two main stone rooms and a unique blank canvas unlike anywhere else.

Anyhow, you don’t need me frothing over it’s incredible blue-stone walls and regurgitating information you can find readily available on the Truffleduck website, but I will say that outside of an old palace on the side of an Italian cliff, there aren’t any venues i’ve been to that feel anything quite like this.

Old Paper Mills Geelong Capacity

Lower Section – 200 guests 
Upper Section – 160 guests
Cocktail Style – 380 guests

Fyansford Papermill Site 3a – Truffleduck
Truffleduck instagram


For venues like the Paper Mill outside of Geelong, see Alternative Wedding Venues in Melbourne.

Need a photographer for your Paper Mill wedding?

paper mill geelong wedding
paper mill geelong wedding
Fyansford Site 3a
Fyansford Site 3a
Fyansford Site 3a
Fyansford Site 3a
Fyansford Site 3a
Paper Mill Wedding
Paper Mill Wedding
Paper Mill Wedding
Paper Mill Wedding
Paper Mill Wedding

Hire me to photograph your Old Paper Mill Wedding.

briarsatlas.com

Black and White wedding photos

Jul 10, 2020

A set of black and white favourites over the years from here, there everywhere.

New Zealand Blizzard
See this location in Best Melbourne Wedding photo locations.
Melbourne wedding photographer reviews
Analog wedding photographer
Zoe and Adam – Blue Mountains Wedding and Elopement Photographer
35mm film wedding photography
Black and white wedding photos
Steph and Zac – Quarry Farm wedding – more Fremantle weddings.
Black and white wedding photos
Steph and Aleks – I Do Drive Thru
Rupert on Rupert
Alix and Tim – Rupert on Rupert wedding
One Day Bridal wedding dress
Alex Perry Wedding dress
Suzanne Harward gown for Melbourne Registry office wedding portraits
Best modern wedding gowns - Brooke Tyson Ritual
Best modern wedding dresses - Brooke Tyson Ritual
Black and white wedding photos
Fran in Brooke Tyson
Melbourne wedding photographer reviews
Humdrum Films Cost
Hannah in Paolo Sebastian
analogue film wedding photographer
Wedding on a Family Property
Dancefloor - Rupert on Rupert
Alix and Tim – Rupert on Rupert wedding
Black and white wedding photos
Black and white wedding photos
Wes anderson style wedding photography
Black and white wedding photos
Yashica Rolleiflex TLR film wedding photography
Black and white wedding photos
Rupert on Rupert
35mm film wedding photography
Yashica Rolleiflex TLR film wedding photography
Jenelle on Parker – film wedding photography
family property wedding
Black and white wedding photos
Analog film wedding photographer melbourne
Kids at weddings
Wes anderson style wedding photography
Destination wedding photographer
Black and white wedding photos
Black and white wedding photos
Black and white wedding photos
Yashica Rolleiflex TLR film wedding photography
Black and white wedding photos
35mm film wedding photography tri x kodak
35mm film wedding photography
Black and white wedding photos
Black and white wedding photos
Suzanne Harward Bluebird Gala Gown
Tash and Laura in Suzanne Harward
Dogs at Warehouse Wedding
Suzanne Harward bridal gown
Melbourne wedding photographer reviews
Black and white wedding photos
New Zealand Blizzard

Shot on Kodak Tri-X

To see how I edit black and white images, head over to Melbourne wedding photography workshop.

How to write wedding vows

Jul 9, 2020

Charis white is a Melbourne wedding celebrant with an enormous amount of experience in weddings large and small all over greater Melbourne and Victoria, for every type of couple you can imagine. With all her experience in running brilliant ceremonies, Charis shares her thoughts on how to write a wedding ceremony, how to write your vows, and how to ensure that it’s a smooth experience – especially for the shy and introverted.

When you consider how to write a wedding ceremony, what are the perfect elements a great one, and how do you personally service them?  

How to write wedding vows


Getting to know the couple well means they will have a great ceremony. At a wedding I did recently, a guest asked if I was a friend of the couples. This is the best compliment ever as it shows I really know them and reflected their story in an awesome way. 

How to write wedding vows

Do you recommend a process for couples to think about their vows content? 


I ask them if they have an idea about what they want to talk about. If not, then I give them some vow inspiration to look over and guide them along. I also read over the vows and offer advice and guidance. 

What are your best tips for couples that are shy at the idea of being vulnerable in front of their community? 

how to write wedding vows


I tell them to face each other, that way they are only seeing the face of their bestie.  If you are nervous, a reassured look can calm you down. I am also up there with them to reassure them and guide them through the process. 

How do you take the inner vibes of your couples and translate that into an overall wedding ceremony that’s meaningful to them and congruent to their vows? 

Laura in the incredible Suzanne Harward songbird gown also featured here.


When I meet my couples, we have a chat about their day, their expectations and the overall vibe they want their ceremony to take. Once we have chatted through their story, I send them a questionnaire with more comprehensive questions. I also give my clients the draft to look over, it reassures them.

In terms of their vows (see Jake writing his wedding vows), I cast my eyes over them to make sure they are both semi aligned. EG, if one vow is very funny, then I will go to the other person and tell them to weave in a little humour.

That way they are both balanced. 

How do you ensure that aside from the couple, their family and community is entertained or spoken to by the ceremony?

Suzanne Harward Songbird Gala Gown


I talk about family and friends in the ceremony. I also love engaging with people prior to the ceremony, especially the oldies and kids.

If there is a way to weave a few friends into the ceremony story, I love to do this and love the relatability of it. 

I see a lot of vows written the morning of the wedding. Brave! What is your advice on writing the vows ahead of time or in the moment on the day? 

How to write wedding vows

Laura and Walker looking super cinematic. See why I shoot film.


My advice is totally against this. Actually, I bully them into giving them to me prior. JK. If the couple wants me to have their vows, so they do not need to carry anything on the day of their wedding. I ask for the vows prior to the ceremony. I then populate them into the final draft.

My timeline on this is at least two weeks prior to the ceremony. Sometimes I get them the morning of.

However, most couples are pretty good with getting them to me on time. I also look over their vows prior to the ceremony.  

Long story short – don’t leave your vows until the last minute!

Your top three parting tips for couples looking to hire a celebrant? 


Follow your gut, trust the process and believe in your team. 

Find Charis White online (and hire her for your Melbourne elopement):

Charis White Celebrant Website
Charis White Celebrant Instagram

See here for how to plan wedding music.

I DO Drive Thru wedding melbourne

Jul 8, 2020

I Do Drive Thru is a worldwide wedding startup, helping couples get hitched in the middle of Covid19 while adhering to the restrictions and saving the partying for later. Since launching in Melbourne as a drive through wedding service, it’s spread nationally, and has since popped up all over the USA. Melbourne wedding celebrant Mel (who also moonlights as The Ceremony Store) runs us through why it started and how it’s helped couples all over the world.

Who are you and what do you do ad I Do Drive Thru?

I’ve been a Marriage and Funeral Celebrant for 15 years and own the companies, The Ceremony Store, The I Do Drive Thru and The Last Time.  I am also a Celebrant Trainer with Australian Celebrations Training, Furniture Maker, Writer, Mother and Wife but I have always wanted to be an Electrician.

I am obsessed with learning as much as I can in this lifetime, I am perpetually curious. I try one new task every year until I get good at it, then I move on: I have learnt lock-picking, languages, carpentry, metal-detecting, and written a book.

I Do Drive Thru

When COVID 19 became a part of our world I was given medical advice to isolate which meant I could no longer do weddings. The next day I gave away/rescheduled 17 weddings and it was, to say the least; devastating, not just for me, but for my couples. Not only that, I felt horribly guilty giving my weddings to other Celebrants who could possibly get COVID.

That night I lay awake thinking about how I could keep those Celebrants safe and keep working from home during COVID.

To digress, I have always been a bit obsessed with Vegas style weddings and in my early Celebrancy career, I used to ride my red postie motorbike to weddings dressed as Elvis. It just seemed pretty natural that Vegas-vibed drive thru weddings and getting couples to stay in their cars while getting married and keeping the Celebrant distanced was the answer to all of my problems.

The next morning I texted 3 of the most awesome Celes I know, said let’s start this business, and all of them said yes without hesitation and 8 days later, we had a business name, logo, website and a press release. On our launch day we had over 32 calls from the press, 10 enquiries and booked our very first wedding.

Just by chance, my co-founders Kate, Zena and Klara were the perfect combo to get everything going, and the main driver between all of us was the passion to continue working while this crisis was going on around us. 

We all love what we do and while we all kind of felt like sitting around grieving for what we had lost, we forced ourselves to build something new to fit with the changed times. Our catch cry became ‘we will work that out later’ as the business moved so incredibly quickly.

I honestly believe that anyone can do anything they set their mind to, impossible isn’t in my vocabulary. Any skill can be learned, any work can be completed no matter what limits there are, so we worked 19-20 hours days for that first week and we pulled it off.

The most rewarding thing about starting the business was the instant gratification we got with the media interest, we knew that our idea was good and the public interest confirmed that.

I Do Drive Thru seemed to grow incredibly quickly. How has it felt seeing it take off, and at such scale?

I Do Drive Thru
Klara McMurray celebrant in action for I Do Drive Thru.

My gorgeous co-founders put so much trust in me right from the get go. We organised everything via phone, zoom and email, we have only sat in the same space once since we started the business, which is pretty incredible. 

On launch day, seeing Klara on the 6pm news launching our business was such an achievement and then to replicate that model in each state over and over and then in the US has been amazing!

We now have 21 Celebrants working Aus wide with us and 2 in the US.  

How has I Do Drive Thru seamlessly melted into the industry as it exists currently?

Celebrants weren’t the only people affected by COVID, it’s also the photographers, venue owners, car hire companies, florists, everyone has been affected in our industry. We worked hard to create a model that could encompass as many of these suppliers in local communities as possible, so they could be involved too. 

A huge benefit to our business has been that we managed to snag some of the best photographers in Australia to work with us and these artists have provided some of the most epic photos of ceremonies. 

Having these professional images to share with potential couples so they can see that tiny weddings can be so intimate and beautiful and moving has been incredible, a professional picture really is worth a thousand words.

Bringing work to all types of wedding industry professionals, while they were feeling pretty down about losing their own work, has given us all the warm fuzzies.

Have there been any themes to the type stories and couples coming through I Do Drive Thru?

Our couples really range in age, we have had couple in their 20’s to couple’s in their 80’s. The similarity between them is that they really want to get married, but feel like they don’t fit into the white wedding dress/getting given away by Dad/first dance scenario. We have had couples that have stayed in their car for the ceremony, gotten out and married under trees, created convoys so family and friends can come and watch and couples have arrived via cars, helicopters, motorbikes and bicycles.

My fave couple so far is a couple where the Bride recently became paraplegic and she is still getting used to navigating new places and feels a little self-conscious. 

Her Fiancé just wanted to marry her, because in his words, ‘she is the most amazing woman in the world’.  When they heard about the Drive Thru and she saw that she didn’t have to get out of the car and worry about wheelchair logistics, she cried, because this was the only way she felt comfortable getting married. 

How do you see both the future of weddings and your place within it at I Do Drive Thru?

I Do Drive Thru

COVID is going to be here for a while. It’s not going to magically disappear, and I honestly think this will impact the wedding industry for years. 

In the short term we have the uncertainty of not knowing when we can go back to booking big celebrations and it makes planning pretty impossible.

Then when restrictions are lifted then yes, technically, we can go back to bigger celebrations, but is it a celebration if you can’t hug your Nan when you walk back down the aisle? Is it a celebration if you can’t share a shot glass or eat bread out of the same breadbasket? 

The effects of social distancing will continue to live on, especially when it comes to celebrating that way that we are used to.

Celebrant Zena Lythgow in action for I Do Drive Thru with the Covid wedding Melbourne of Adriana and Caleb.

A surprising side-effect to this whole COVID scenario, is that suddenly eloping isn’t taboo, eloping makes you responsible, kinda like a hero, you are protecting your community by having a small wedding and that shift in thinking has been kinda rad.

People have been eloping because there isn’t the stigma attached to it anymore, heck the government practically endorsed eloping when you were only allowed to have the marrying couple and two witnesses present.

Any key advice for couples considering getting married during or after Covid19?

I Do Drive Thru

My advice to couples during COVID has been to follow your heart and remember that there is a huge difference between a marriage and a wedding. (Check out Will and Jac for Melbourne wedding planning). 

If you wanna get married, get married, do it, commit to your lover, that’s so important, don’t let COVID stop you. There is literally no better time to love and be loved than right now, having companionship during a crisis is what will get you through it.

When people ask what you did during COVID how totally romantic is it to say that you married your honey and then shacked up in iso together? (Side note – like this Blue Mountains Elopement).

I Do Drive Thru

If your heart is set on a wedding that encompasses family and friends, then wait, but wait until COVID is dead and gone and we can hug again.  Have a huge wedding down the track, when you can handshake and dance, but you will have to be patient.  

And for those that want both, do it! Have the most romantic, sweet tiny ceremony now and make it all about each other, then have a huge wedding party later on-best of both worlds.

There’s so many polarising stances on dealing with this from a business perspective, especially when small-business in the events space is exposed to the extreme end of the risk dial. What’s your advice to businesses navigating this sustainably, while continuing to place their couples first?

Running a business during a pandemic is tough. Terms and conditions/your contract/Statement of Fees documents are everything. Mine was pretty broad but certainly never covered a killer virus!

I always say to other Celebrants be tough on paper, but soft in reality. You have to have your rules in place, but be flexible, don’t forget everyone is going through something and creating relationships, and word of mouth recommendations in this business is what it is all about. 

I always rule with my heart and not my head, so I certainly don’t set the best example for other business owners, but I find if you treat people with kindness then that’s what you will get back.

What’s been a personal joy you’ve gotten through this whirlwind?

I have always gotten more out of what I do for others, than what I do for myself, so to create a business that has helped so people feel good and have a bit of purpose during COVID has probably been one of the most rewarding things I have done for a long time.

Find I Do Drive Thru online

I Do Drive Thru

I Do Drive Thru website
I Do Drive Thru instagram

All photos on this page are from I Do Drive Thru weddings by Briars Atlas. Images may be re-posted with credit and a link to this site.

For more info on how to get married during Covid 19 away from a drive thru wedding, check out these small wedding venues in Melbourne, and this information piece on having a Melbourne City elopement during Covid 19.

To have your small Melbourne City elopement filmed by the best wedding videographers in town, check out Bottlebrush Films as they’re doing filming for overseas guests and relatives who can’t make it.

Lunar Red Films

Jul 7, 2020

I had a chat with alleged government agent/assassin Carlo, otherwise known as the the genius artistic brain behind Lunar Red Films. We’ve been lucky to work together on the wedding of Pepe and Sam, featured on Hello May, with none less than Nat Sproal, Torte by Mirjana, Killer Queen Creative, and Good Day Club.

With Covid forcing us all indoors and all manner of brilliant doorstep portrait projects happening, I wanted to kickstart some convos with my local community and find out how the time and strange space is being used, as it’s never been more important to stay connected and sharing.


So who the hell is Lunar Red Films, what do your friends think you do, and what do you actually do?


My name is Carlo. My friends think I’m a government assassin (can confirm this is a generally held opinion – BA). Me mum thinks I’m handsome, but really I’m just your friendly, neighbourhood wedding cinematographer.


What excites you most about the culture of weddings in Melbourne?


Melbourne is just chock a block full of wonderful, loved up weirdos, who are willing to break convention and tradition and just do their own thing. It means that each couple has brought a sense of heart and soul into their weddings, and have given it a stamp that is all on their own. I don’t know any other city where that happens. 


What do you feel separates Lunar Red Films from those around you in your line of work?


Some people use the term “minimalism” (cue the air wank motion) – I prefer to say “steak and veg”. That’s how I like to shoot – as simple and as free of gimmicks and other fanciful shit as humanly possible. What that leaves me with is me, the camera, and the moment happening directly in front of me. I’m not here trying to manufacture someone else’s feelings, I’m not attempting to set up a moment that isn’t real. Everything I point my camera at is genuine and, hopefully, the couple remembers the feelings they have for each other in the moment as opposed to me yelling at them to behave a certain way.


How have you kept your business healthy during Covid, and how might couples now benefit from it?

I like to cap my weddings per season at a certain number. It means that I’m able to give each wedding my creative focus without being snowed under by work and burn out. When covid hit, I only had a handful of weddings left to shoot down the line, so it gave me a little extra time to edit the weddings I had already shot to perfection. 


How do you see the future of celebrations in our city and what mark do you want to leave on it?

I feel like weddings and celebrations will continue to get more and more. unconventional the more couples and future clients realise that they don’t have to do what’s come before to have a good time or to profess their love out to the world. More colour, more rule breaking, more heart. Basically just more of the good stuff.

Lunar Red Films wedding videographer at The Line Footscray

Find Lunar Red Films online

https://www.lunarred.com.au/
Lunar Red Films on Instagram

Brooke tyson ritual bridal

Jul 6, 2020

Brooke Tyson Ritual – some of the most incredible bridal designs on the planet, with delicate contours and flowing textures, and what a treat it was to photograph them in a (real) blizzard, atop a volcano in New Zealand, draped over our incredible model, Fran, for the Story and Light photography workshop hosted by the genius wizardchildren over at Bayly and Moore.

Featured here is the Brooke Tyson Ritual Luna gown, as well as their Flora gown.

Story and Light was sponsored by the brilliant Australian film-lab Atkins, who kindly developed and scanned all of these images, shot entirely on Kodak Film. More on analogue wedding photography.

New Zealand Blizzard
Brooke tyson ritual - Flora gown

Removing herself from the perilously wild volcanic blizzard (despite the hardy protection of the Luna gown), here, we see Fran emerging from a more friendly forest, in the Brooke Tyson Flora gown.

Above and below is the Flora gown. Anyone that has ever met a New Zealander knows that the Ritual collection benefits from the classic kiwi ingenuity, developed in and around curious brain-zaps that test the edges of what bridal gowns should look like.

Brooke tyson ritual - Flora gown
Brooke tyson ritual - Flora gown

Celebrating free-spirits and with inspiration taken from cinema and folklore, the Brooke Tyson Luna gown was pretty much made to be draped across Franc and then whisked by a blizzard in on top of a volcano.

Brooke Tyson are also featured here on my top 5 best modern wedding dresses.

New Zealand Volcano
New Zealand Volcano
Brooke tyson ritual - Luna gown
Brooke tyson ritual - Luna gown
Brooke tyson ritual - Luna gown
This majestic snap also lives in my wedding portraits post.
New Zealand Blizzard
If you like this, check out more black and white wedding photos.

Find Brooke Tyson Ritual online

Website: https://brooketysonritual.com/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brooketysonritual
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BrookeTysonRitual/

For more wedding dress designs from another planet, check out Jaime Lee Major.

If you like Brooke Tyson, you might also like these incredible wedding jumpsuits.

yarra valley wedding venues

Jul 5, 2020

The Yarra Valley is one of the most totally majestic regions in Victoria, which you already know if you’re planning a wedding out that way. Yarra Valley Wedding venues are places that celebrate the natural beauty of the area, as well as the unique food, wine, and accommodation.

This is a complete guide to having a wedding in the Yarra Valley that covers the very best venues available, accommodation for your guests, and extra things to do the day after!

As someone who grew up in the Yarra Valley, i’ve got a special passion for the are and it’s a treat to lay out some of my favourite spots in the region. These days I photograph weddings in the Yarra Valley year in and year out, but a couple of decades ago it was tearing around the streets on a BMX instead.

To either of those, it’s got a special place in my heart and if it doesn’t yet have one in yours, it soon will.

By choosing to have a Yarra Valley Winery Wedding, you can treat yourselves and your guests to a dreamy mini getaway away from the rush of the city, soaking up all of the culinary wizardry and hospitality from the region.

These Yarra Valley wedding venues are some of the best wedding locations Australia has to offer, let alone in Victoria. I’ve photographed a fair few Yarra Valley winery weddings in my time. They’re stunning. The evening sun pirouettes through the vines, and if you’re lucky, drops an incredible rainbow your way (looking at you, hills of Zonzo Estate).

There are an innumerable amount of Yarra Valley wedding venues to choose from, so I’ve compiled a short and sharp list from first hand experience for you to peruse and explore, sink your teeth into whilst navigating a latte like-say, etc.

Because this area of the world is so spectacular, i’ve also included some useful local insights to occupy yourselves with either side of your wedding day itself. It’s all well and good picking a ceremony and reception venue but that’s only half of the fun. Where will you get ready? Where will you sleep?

And.

Where will you cure the hangover?

I’ve looked into some dazzling accomodation for you and your guests to lay your heads. Being secluded and private on a vineyard is one thing, but people not being able to find the place or their way back to bed is another!

The accommodation I’ve picked is local to your potential venues so people aren’t spending too long travelling before or after. I’ve looked at a range of affordability too so everyone can enjoy this wonderland. It’s little things like this I find help the day run smoothly and keep spirits high.

Remember, there is going to be a lot of sore heads the next day so I‘ve snuck in a few great places to catch your first married bite the morning after too.

The Best Valley Wedding Venues

All of these venues are pretty marvellous in their own way, so these are listed in no particular order. When you go and visit them you’ll know which one is the one, and I recommend booking a meeting with their events coordinator to show you around. The awesome crew that run them, the wild scenery, the charming ceremony spaces and the versatile reception areas will all ring true with you in one way or another.

The top 4 Yarra Valley Wedding Venues (in no particular order):

  1. Zonzo Estate 
  2. Stones of the Yarra Valley
  3. Yering Station
  4. Immerse Winery

Read on to find out exactly why these 5 have made it to my list. Each one offers something quite different. I obviously love wedding venues that have unique photo opportunities and sublime backdrops, and we are not short of them here. I also love it when venues have really thought about the couple and their guests’ whole experience. Whether that’s offering a bridal day room, onsite ceremony and accommodation, or an award winning dining experience. It’s those little extras that make your wedding the talk of the town!

Yarra Valley wedding venues: Zonzo Estate Yarra Valley

I’m kicking off my list with these maestros because this is a venue for the photos and the food! My two pleasures in life. I remember turning up at the Zonzo Estate for the first time and being pretty knocked out by it’s rolling hills. Set in an old milking barn the emphatic main building with sloped roof, huge glass panelling and sleek interior design makes for an idyllic modern yet traditional setting. They have a particularly cute outdoor area under festoon lights where newlyweds do the ‘zonzo twirl’ contrasted by the evening’s sweeping landscape. A bonus of this estate is that you can opt to have your actual ceremony on site with a choice of three glorious spaces overlooking the rolling hills. No chance of anyone getting lost en route to this reception. The three options give you the chance to express yourself that little bit more, and make for a venue that you can make your own.

The real dark-horse of this place though, the gem of Zonzo Estate, is their Italian dining experience. Let’s face it, no one wants shit food at a wedding (this can’t be drilled home hard enough ahead of time). If guests taste buds are being tantalised, then the vibe is too (if you’re looking at a venue that doesn’t have onsite catering, make sure you check out this post about the best wedding caterers in Melbourne). People need fuel for the dance floor! Zonzo Estate have won several awards for their wedding restaurant reception so it’s official that their food is to die for. They’ve been in the business over a decade and know what they’re doing. Zonzo have their own wedding coordinators on site to help you make your Yarra Valley winery wedding dreams come to life in the most seamless and stress-free way, and they run like clockwork.

Intermission: be sure to check out my larger post on Zonzo Estate.

I love the shit out of being a part of couples wedding here – beautiful industrial structures juxtaposed with all things rustic, and a moving platter of beautiful vibes all on the one property. While you’re on the Zonzo train, you might also like these beautiful rustic wedding venues in Victoria.

Yarra Valley wedding venues: Stones of the Yarra Valley