I always thought it'd be really difficult to plan a wedding. Lots of time, lots of things to organise. By the time it actually came around to organising mine and Isaac's wedding, we were poorer on time than we had ever been but also didn't want to wait too long to get married. We had been together for just shy of a decade at that point and felt no need to wait any longer.
We sat down on the Sunday afternoon after we got engaged on Friday. We split a bottle of wine while we searched through Google and wedding blogs like Hello May to find things we liked. Within the space of a few hours, we had sent enquiries off to our favourite venues and vendors hoping that they'd all have availability at some point in the near future and we could just lock it all in without much further thought. As it happened, our favourite venue, Farm Vigano, had March 17 available so we locked it in and everyone else we had emailed were also available then, so by Friday we had planned and booked our wedding. Seven days from engagement to done basically. We were to be married in under nine months.
The food was the most important thing to us. I really dislike traditional wedding food. One plate of beef, one plate of chicken. It's too boring and we don't usually eat meals like that anyway so it didn't make much sense to serve that on our big day. I grew up near Farm Vigano and used to play in the old house when it was abandoned so it was nice to choose somewhere that was meaningful. Their food is also out of this world. We had canapes including gnocchi, chargrilled prawns, tender AF calamari and piping hot arancini. We also had a gelati cart because I LOVE gelato. The guys at Bianco Latte make their own gelati by hand so it was a no-brainer. Then we had a French champagne tower for our toast and of course, I was swigging from the bottle. Antipasto followed with lots of insanely good, salty bread, then housemade woodfired pizzas, twice cooked potatoes, parmesan rocket and pear salads, broccolini, slow braised lamb with salsa verde and slow roasted pork shoulder with rosemary and caper butter. And Sicilian ricotta cannoli with coffee. Ugh YUM! Everyone raved about the food, and rightly so, it was insanely good.
Then our cake. OMG. The cake!! We found Miss Ladybird Cakes and were sold at the first tasting. Dark chocolate stout cake with cream cheese frosting. Shut the front door. We were done. We also chose a lemon myrtle and citrus curd cake with vanilla buttercream. They were even better the next day at the airport for breakfast.
Our menus, seating charts, wedding signs and place cards were illustrated by the absurdly talented Only One Creative, using orange blossoms in our design as they are the traditional Italian wedding flower. We had two bomboniere, one traditional Italian one of prosecco with five sugared almonds symbolising health, wealth, happiness, fertility and long-life. The second one was a homemade shortbread using Isaac's grandmother's famous recipe.
When we thought about what sort of wedding we wanted, we really just wanted a big party and nothing else. So it was easier in some way to plan I think. We have gorgeous friends but we didn't have a bridal party. To be honest, we just couldn't be bothered with it all! And we wanted everyone to be relaxed, wear whatever they wanted and drink to their heart's content without worrying about photos and speeches and all the rest of it. I didn't feel like we missed out on anything for not having one either. My sister did a reading during our ceremony and she held my flowers when it came time for the vows. I also didn't have a hen's party. Just not my thing really! My mum, aunty and mother-in-law threw me a bridal shower for a couple of hours on a Sunday afternoon before the wedding and that was perfect. Cake, Pimms, finger sandwiches, champagne and friends. It was really special.
I worked madly up until the afternoon before the wedding. There wasn't much I could do about that as a one-woman show really but I wish I had've given myself a little more time to enjoy the lead up. It's the only thing I would've changed.
I spent the night before the wedding at my parents house even though Isaac and I bought a house together a little while ago. I didn't like this idea at first but actually it was really sweet. Mum made cottaletta/schnitzel and we had champagne. I wrote my vows on the couch in my daggy nightie at about 10pm while half-heartedly watching 'He's just not that into you' because it was on TV. I'd been putting off my vows because I was worried I wouldn't be able to verbalise everything that Isaac means to me and so, at the last minute, I just wrote my emotion down. I also wrote a letter saying exactly what I wanted to say to Isaac. My vows were the nice, neat version and the letter was my heart on my sleeve.
I folded my handwritten scraps of paper (which I'm famous for, I run my life on scraps of paper!) and put them under my pillow before sleeping.
The next morning I got up at around 8. The beautiful Viv of Viv Roche Makeup arrived not long after and began chatting away while doing my mum's, my sister's and my makeup. I wanted to wear a nicer version of what I do myself, purples and golds for eyeshadow and my standard winged eyeliner. And definitely no lower eyeliner like all the other artist's had tried to get me to wear.
My sister is a hairdresser so she did our hair. I was pretty blasé about my hair so we just did barrel curls and used a hair comb I found in Brunswick to pin one side back.
My flowers arrived in the meantime and I swear they were my favourite things about the whole day. They were phenomenal. I worked with Kate at Mary Mary Studio in Coburg and she is a bloody legend. I didn't want anything like what I had seen before. I wanted moody texture galore with an old-world, sophisticated colour scheme. She effing nailed it. I mean, what florist do you know who can interpret that ridiculous brief?! Just magic.
We had eggs in tomato sugo and onion with bread for lunch and I followed it up with a scotch with my dad. I needed it at that point. I wasn't scared of getting married. I was worried about standing in front of so many people! I STILL get red and blotchy when I public speak and was beginning to freak out big time. I even told my mum I should've eloped at that point. She was not impressed, haha!
Our photographer and videographer arrived soon after and they were also dead-set legends. Our photographer was Lilli of I Got You Babe and our videographer was Nathan of Nathan Kaso Weddings. Easy-going, relaxed and nothing was posed. All candid. Which is lucky, because I cannot for the life of me smile on cue!
Once I was dressed and my dad cried a river, we drove as a family in my parent's car to Farm Vigano. I went straight into the fruit orchard to see Isaac for the first time. All I felt was happiness. All my nerves disappeared and I knew this wedding thing was going to be totally fine. We did some shots of grappa then took some photos together before I went to the bridal suite at Farm Vigano to get ready and brush 67000 bindis out of my train. Lucky I had all hands (Mum, Isaac's Mum, my sis, Nonna, Dad) on deck for that!
Dad and I watched over the garden while our guests arrived and I started to get jittery. There were so many people. Why couldn't I get married in private?! Too late for those questions at that point! We went downstairs to the bar and had another scotch together before I steeled myself for the walk down the aisle. My dress weighed about 6kg because even though it was just a silk slip, there was a sheer lace over the top with thousands of hand-sewn glass beads. I was slightly worried that walking down about 30 stairs and a steep decline might have got the better of me. But thank you to my pilates class, my core was iron-clad and I remained upright! I walked down the aisle to a jazz number I love so much from the Midnight in Paris soundtrack. It's the song in the opening credits.
At the end of the aisle, I met Isaac and our amazing celebrant, Paul Bonadio, who wrote the most honest, young, refreshing and utterly hilarious story about how we first met. As pimply 12 year olds in the asbestos-ridden classrooms of the fine establishment that is Greensborough College. We only just held it together for our vows...*just*. And then we exchanged rings. My fingers were so swollen from the warm weather we struggled to get my ring on but it was all the more funny for it. We kissed. We signed our papers. And we walked back down the aisle to The Killers. It wasn't the song we had chosen to play but at that point we didn't care that it was wrong, we just got married!
This photo below, that's me *just* holding it together.
We had olive leaf confetti and forgot to walk up the stairs to the toasting table. We just turned around and stayed with our guests instead!
Undertaking my favourite activity below..eating!
We then walked down the gorge towards the river for some photos. I had taken off my Jimmy Choo's and hoisted all my dress over my shoulder at that point so I could walk among the blackberry prickles and dried out wild artichokes. When we finally got back up to the party, I almost tore my veil and cape off then we toasted, ate gelato, and went upstairs to soak up what had just happened for five minutes before being announced as Mr and Mrs Callaway.
The rest of the night was a fun, non-drunk blur of fun, friends, family, food and so so so so much dancing! The speeches were short, sharp and witty with only Isaac's dad actually writing one. My Dad just winged it and cried basically the whole time whilst laughing. Then everyone else just started crying and laughing. And our good friend Taylor forgot his speech at home in typical fashion but appointed himself best man and maid of honour seeing as we didn't have one and he was the only one of our friends to make a speech.
Our first dance was to 'Wanna Make It Wit Chu' by Queens of the Stone Age and the father-daughter mother-son dance was to 'Capricorn Dancer' by Richard Clapton. We had the most electric band play for the night, Baker Boys Band, and they also played jazz through the cocktail hour on the terrace while we were getting photos. They were heart-stoppingly good.
11.30pm came around too quickly but lucky for us, we had planned an after-party back at our house so everyone climbed into maxi taxis and hit our makeshift bar including my signature espresso martinis, aperol spritz' and negronis as soon as they got in the door. My sister had decked out the house with a million balloons and bunting and was handing out lollies, Italian doughnuts and crostoli to everyone throughout the night. We kicked on until about 4.30am before collapsing in a heap on the bed, with our cats, eating wedding cake and reading our guest book until we dozed off to sleep with the lamps still on.
We seriously had the best day. It was imperfectly perfect. We had no rehearsal and didn't think too much about anything really. Plus I got to marry the love of life <3 so it did turn out to be just the biggest and best party ever.
You can watch our wedding video by Nathan Kaso Weddings below, if you want a little more wedding fun! It has the best, most fun song in it ever!