Ever feel the vibes of stepping back in time? Well for Natasha and Ryan when they scrapped their original plans for an 80-person extravaganza, and instead celebrated with just 30 guests, at an ice cream shop then restaurant celebration, they did it with the most whimsical retro flair. And every moment – from the cake to the flowers, to the ice cream served post ceremony, is an utter delight.
Captured by one of Melbourne’s queens of colour Mrs White, this was a celebration many moons in the making- the pair meeting back in 2012 in the downstairs room of the La Di Da club. “His best friend brought him and my best friend brought me – we had a sneaky. I tell people the less seedy version – we met through our best friends – cute.” laughs Natasha.
In early 2017, Ryan had acquired a ring just a few months before the couple planned to backpack through Europe. And then Natasha’s sister found it! Natasha remembering “She found the ring hidden in an old Holden puzzle box that he thought no one would want to use – she was bored one day and opened that puzzle box, saw the ring, got so excited and called her friend as she HAD to tell someone! She safely placed it back in anticipation.
September that year and we were enjoying ourselves making our way to the third stop of our Europe trip – Sorento, Italy. Unbeknownst to me he had the ring hidden in his shoe and planned to propose at the end of the trip to Iceland. On our last day in Positano, we decided to take a walk from our B&B on the hill to the town centre. Halfway down the hill, through little alleyways and many prickly pear cactuses later we had a pit stop with a beautiful Lookout overlooking Positano – we admired the view and took photos. It was then Ryan decided he couldn’t wait until Iceland; this was the spot he would propose instead– one problem; the ring was back at the hotel…
Once we hit the bottom of the town, we stopped at a ceramic shop selling Amalfi coast-inspired pottery and tiles with numbers for your house. “Oh my gosh, these are gorgeous. They’re like the tiled house numbers that we saw on the way here! Maybe not a house number though, maybe a date? Like the date of when we got together or… the year of the trip! Oh, I don’t know what should we do?” I said. Ryan at this stage was wanting to get the ring and try to figure out; (a) how to pull me away from a purchase and (b) how do you convince me to go back up the hill to the B&B and then back down thousands of stairs again?
Ryan said he wanted to go back to the Lookout again and enjoy it some more. “What? Again?! Today?” Ryan used the one thing he knew would get him over the line he explained didn’t know what date tiles to get because he can’t think and was really “hangry”, wanted to go back to the B&B, eat something and he wanted to see that view again before we left Positano; we could go back to the shop after that. VERY reluctantly I agreed because we know never to argue when one of us is Hungry. One bus trip back up the hill, some food, and Ryan’s sneaky change of clothes (under the guise of being hot and sticky) later we made our way down again. Back at that Lookout Ryan insisted we set up the tripod for a photo rather than selfies. While he did that, I was obliviously taking selfies and enjoying the view. “C’mon, what’s taking so long?” – shaking in your boots doesn’t help steady a camera.
He hit a record. I posed, stupidly smiling at the camera for a photo until Ryan was no longer standing but kneeling…. What the!!! Still, after 6 years together at that point I had no idea that was coming. Afterwards, we got back down to the ceramic shop where Ryan then said smugly “hmm, I wonder what significant date we could get?…” The funny thing is after all that fuss by the time we got back to that look out a storm was on its way and the photos are not of the beautiful sunny edge of Positano that we had earlier that day! We spent our night celebrating by eating salami, cheese, and arancini in our room as the clouds had turned into a full-blown storm.”
Natasha was escorted down the aisle by her father. “I waited for my entrance to ‘Day Dreaming’ – Aretha Franklin, I walked down the aisle with my dad to ‘LOVE’ – CHVRCHES and kissed to ‘Cuz I Love You’ – Lizzo.” It was the morning and night before the day, that stood out to Natasha as some of her favourite moments. “We both loved the pre-wedding activities. We spent the night at our hotel together and went out for dinner the night before. We went our separate ways in the morning; Ryan went and had breakfast at the hotel and went for a walk in Albert Park before getting ready at his best friend’s house, I watched friends while eating room service for breakfast, got my hair and makeup done.”
“Our parents and grandparents, who were given the special job of throwing the confetti did not quite understand the assignment and violently threw confetti at our faces and heads whilst we attempted our first kiss and simultaneously blocked the photographer! Hilarious. We had to do a take-two! That is a warning to future couples!”
Natasha and Ryan chose Precious Celebrations to officiate their ceremony, sharing “We wanted our ceremony to be short, sweet and ‘eloped’. Our ceremony was conducted by our amazing celebrant, Precious, who started with an acknowledgment to country followed by lots of love and laughs.”
The day began with a ceremony at the bright and beautiful ice cream shop Kenny Lover. Explains Natasha “We had our ceremony at Kenny Lover ice cream shop, an orange velvet dream in the northern suburb of Preston. Where we and our guests indulged in post-ceremony, all-you-could-lick gourmet ice cream including a specially made batch of Prosecco gelato!”
Even the flowers embodied that retro vibe the beauty courtesy of Bloom Boy. Says Natasha “We explained our ceremony and reception venue, outfits and accessories to our wonderfully talented florist Bloom Boy who suggested keeping it retro with baby’s breath, roses, carnations, chrysanthemums and the biggest orchards I’ve ever seen!”
With a wedding full of colour and fun like this naturally, Natasha and Ryan wanted a photographer who could capture that vision in their photographs, they share “We chose Mrs White photography because of their colourful, playful, and curious style. They have a talent for making colour POP. In addition, they were such a pleasure to work with that I booked them for my Muriel’s Wedding themed Hens! They were incredibly supportive during covid and genuinely excited to be a part of our day.”
Natasha’s fun off the shoulder frock was found at Asos (here she also found those retro sunglasses!). She tells “Being a Pandemic bride after 2 postponements, gaining 30kg. not fitting into my original dress, I opted to purchase a few dresses off ASOS and keep the one that made me feel good, was fun and easy on the pocket! For $145 it was a bargain! Surprisingly to me (and eventually Ryan- surprise!) it was a white dress which I always said I would never do – I love colour!
I have a very extensive collection of earrings; you will never catch me without donning a pair. Because I went with a white dress, I decided to go with my biggest bold pair I had, three-tiered Pink Concrete Jellyfish x Rachel Sara earrings which went well with my red and orange heels from Bared Footwear.” Ryan opted for a lavender jacket fromJack London, with pants from French Connection. “No tie, keeping it cool and relaxed! We both love colour!”
“Another reason we chose Kenny Lover, is because it was close to my grandparent’s house and located in an area where I spent most of my childhood” explains Natasha. “It was special to be able to see my grandfather, who couldn’t make it to the wedding after the ceremony. We got to take photos with them in their house which I will cherish forever.
Ready to celebrate with these two? Their guests joined them at city restaurant Chin Chin for a delicious dinner. “Dinner followed starting with Lychee martinis on arrival at Chin Chin Melbourne’s deliciously pink event space with equally delicious Asian fusion cuisine and a list of their best house cocktails. Cocktails were important; we both don’t drink wine and love a good cocktail!”
The reception decor? Fresh flowers and handmade Lego flowers! Natasha surprised Ryan with handmade pieces. “I spent four weeks secretly making 60 LEGO flowers for the table setting and one pair of the cutest LEGO love birds to sit next to flowers at Kenny Lovers. Our florist patiently arranged table setting flowers to include LEGO flowers mixed with baby’s breath as a surprise for the Groom, as he is a LEGO kid!”
Natasha and Ryan credit much of the success of their day to their amazing team of vendors. “The best part of wedding planning was the support and reassurance from our suppliers during the pandemic. There is a reason these people are in the wedding business, they have so much heart that they have made it their careers. Our celebrant and photographer were so involved on the day they were some of our favourite guests! Our florist and cake baker worked together to ensure our cake was delivered on time. Our furniture rental company squeezed us into a very tight post covid wedding boom to make sure our long-awaited nuptials were everything we wanted – neon filled.”
Rethinking their wedding, meant a smaller guest list and no wedding party! “We originally had three bridesmaids and three groomsmen as well as 80 guests. However, after lockdowns and postponing the wedding, we decided to reduce our wedding to a more intimate 30 guests ( and a couple of kids) comprising of our nearest and dearest. This would include having no wedding party at all! At Chin Chin, we sat with our friends and situated our families on either side!”
Natasha’s advice to you? “You don’t need to follow traditions.
You don’t need a huge wedding.
You don’t need to spend big on a dress.
Not everything has to be new.
If something goes wrong, wasn’t what you wanted, looked different to what you ordered; no one but you knows. Everyone else will be none the wiser. Unless of course, you have confetti piffed at your face – everyone will know.
Instagram is your best friend – once you find one supplier that you love, stalk their Instagram and you’ll find like-minded vendors and inspiration. Most vendors tag others in wedding posts. And your vendors will love you for booking people they love working with!”
Congratulations to you both Natasha & Ryan! Thank you for sharing your beautiful day with us and thank you to Mrs White for sharing every love-filled photo!
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