It was not an easy road to tying the knot for Laura and Kelly – the pair was not only forced to change their venue not once, but four times, but they were even forced to change every plan on the very day they ended up tying the knot!  “We got married the day that regional Victoria was put back into lockdown at 1 pm. Our original wedding was meant to be at Panama Dining Room in Fitzroy with 150 guests. Two weeks before the date, we cancelled the big wedding due to Covid lockdowns and organised a smaller one with 20 guests.

The week of our wedding, it was obvious that we weren’t going to be able to get married in Melbourne due to the metro lockdown being extended, so we decided to elope to Mitchelton Winery, Nagambie with four of our closest friends. The morning of our wedding, we packed the car with our wedding outfits and overnight bags and set off to get our hair and makeup done in Geelong before setting off to Mitchelton. At 10:45 am whilst Kelly was getting her makeup done (mine had already been finished luckily), the Premier announced that we were going back into lockdown at 1 pm. There was no way we were going to make it to Mitchelton in two hours, so Laura went into organisation mode and called a local wine bar that we frequent and asked if there was any chance we could fly in there and get married before 1 pm, they happily obliged!

Pulling off an utter miracle and with just Ryal Sormaz, cinematographers Moment Seeker (check below for that one!) their witnesses and their partners present, they made magic happen. “Kelly contacted our celebrant (who was possibly more emotional than us), while Laura contacted our photographer and videographer and let them know the last-minute change of plans. We arrived at the wine bar at 11:45 am, got 45 minutes of photos, then met our celebrant at the wine bar at 12:40 pm and got married by 1 pm. After this, it was home sweet home to commence our lockdown honeymoon, order McDonald’s via Uber Eats and wash it down with champagne in our backyard. It was nothing like we had originally planned, but our day was perfect!”

And though their family and friends may not have been able to be present, they did get a surprise to peek at Laura and Kelly’s day. “It just so happens that our hair and makeup artist, is head of hair and makeup for Channel 7. She contacted Jacqui Felgate and told her about our story and the next minute Jacqui was out the front of our house with a cameraman and we were on the national news that night. We then got contacted by the Sunrise crew who wanted to interview us the following morning. So, even though we couldn’t have all of our guests there, all of our family and friends were able to see the news/Sunrise and be a part of our special day.”

Let’s talk attire! Laura chose a long sleeve, pearl-encrusted Kyha Studios gown, while Kelly wore a suit from Effie Kats. “Laura always wanted a long sleeve dress as we always wanted a winter wedding, she also loves pearls. She found the perfect dress at Kyha Studios that had long sleeves and pearl details on the sleeves. Her outfit was finished off with a pair of Jimmy Choo strappy heels in ivory satin.
Kelly wanted to look classy but be comfortable. She got a custom Effie Kats suit made in white with pearl detail on the cuffs and wore a black silk Effie Kats long sleeve shirt underneath.”

Laura and Kelly knew photographer Ryal before their wedding, so it was a natural choice to have him capture their day, which began with photos. “We have previously worked with our photographer for some prints for our home and when we were planning our wedding, it was a no brainer to use him. Ryal is an amazing guy and happily adapted to our ever-changing wedding plans. He made us feel so comfortable and helped to relax us given how stressful our special day was. He captured it perfectly given the limited time we had.”

There were just a few floral details for the day, the pieces including Laura’s bouquet and Kelly’s boutonniere, as well as a few floral arrangements for the bar. “We wanted simple but elegant. We decided to go with an assortment of white florals with greenery. Laura loves white tulips, so her bouquet was a simple one, with just white tulips.”

The couple’s favourite shot? “The photo of us sitting out the front of the wine bar enjoying some champagne. It felt like we were in the back streets of Paris.”

Union Street Wine Bar turned out to be the perfect last-minute option for Laura and Kelly’s wedding day. “Our venue changed four times as we went through different stages of lockdowns. It went from Panama Dining Room to the Supper Club, to Mitchelton Winery and then to Union Street Wine Bar. Every single venue was amazing to deal with and so accommodating and supportive through the ever-changing lockdown environment.”

With no aisle, Laura and Kelly played “their” song “At Last” by Etta James, as they walked into the wedding together hand in hand. “Turned out to be the most fitting song.”

If you ask us, it makes perfect sense that these two were married at a wine bar, because it was a (different) bar that was the scene where they first met. “We met at a bar through mutual friends. Laura walked in and saw Kelly walking up to the bar and said to her friend ‘I want that one’. Laura then worked out that she knew some of my friends, who then worked their magic at setting us up!”

In keeping with the easygoing, relaxed vibes of the day, Kelly and Laura ditched readings from their ceremony and let celebrant Megan Thompson lead the vibe. They tell “We wanted our ceremony to be fun, light-hearted, but to also reflect us and the love we have for one another. Our celebrant nailed this!”

Even their wedding rings were special. “Kelly’s wedding band is made up of her grandmother’s wedding, engagement and eternity rings. Laura’s wedding band was the ring that her dad gave her mum.”

Laura and Kelly credit their day going so smoothly to their amazing vendors. “All of our vendors and suppliers were so accommodating and supportive of us during the ever-changing lockdown environment, it’s so hard to pinpoint one. Our celebrant, Megan, previously married two of our best friends, so we already knew she was amazing. We already had a relationship with our photographer Ryal and loved him. Our florist Lucie is beautiful and created the perfect floral pieces, which then helped brighten our spirits by having a house full of flowers for our lockdown honeymoon. Our videographer, Haydn of Moment Seeker, captured our (short) day perfectly in an hour and a half. Our hair and makeup artist, Shara Ferguson, not only worked wonders with our makeup but helped set up the wine bar with the flowers etc. We had the most amazing invitations made, by Danielle at Paper Panãche. She was a dream to deal with. We also couldn’t have pulled the day off without our friends at Union Street Wine Bar.”

This was a day, that Laura and Kelly will never, ever forget. “It hasn’t always been possible for us to get married with the gay marriage laws only recently being passed and then with Covid hitting it was very special to us to finally have this opportunity. The wonderful support of our family and friends and whilst they couldn’t be there, we were overwhelmed with ongoing love, messages of support and gifts. Although we only had four guests when we were meant to have 150, the day was intimate and about us and finally cementing our love. We also discovered our new favourite champagne!”

The biggest of congratulations to you both Laura and Kelly! We’re so thrilled you were finally able to tie the knot your way! Best wishes to you both and thank you to Ryal Sormaz for today’s beautiful images.