This week we interviewed #rcrealbride Kirsten
who married the love of her life Justin in our Sareya wedding gown by Maggie Sottero.

17th February 2017


We met about 8 years ago on Facebook – Kirsten was in Brisbane and Justin in Melbourne. After dating long distance for about 6 months, Kirsten through caution to the wind and moved her life to Melbourne. There we developed a great appreciation for each other, for fine food and wine, and generally living life to the full (along with lots of laughs!).


Justin proposed (after a fair amount of prompting from me and pretty much everyone we know). It was Christmas Eve 2015 and we were at my parents house. We’d just spent a fairly long day preparing for the whole family to arrive for lunch at my parents, we’d sat down for a couple of drinks and to watch the news. Justin offered to get everyone a drink and came back with some delicious French champagne – low and behold there was a ring in the bottom of the glass! Justin dropped to his knee in the lounge in front of my parents and popped the question. It was so special because family is everything to both of us and I was so glad it happened the way it did!

Photo of a bride and groom walking down aisle


We really wanted our wedding day to reflect that and Riverstone was just the perfect venue to do so. The venue (Riverstone Estate) itself was really part of the inspiration as well – how could it not be with 360 degree views of the Yarra Valley! But that in itself really represented us as a couple – amazing food and wine is the main focus of our social lives so it was important to us that the venue reflected that. Riverstone isn’t just the place we got married, it’s the place we spent many lovely afternoons planning our wedding over a glass of wine on the balcony, the place we will return to and enjoy the views, the atmosphere and the friendships we’ve formed (and the food and wine of course!!). Nothing was too much trouble and every time we visited we were made to feel welcome and very special. We will continue to visit and enjoy Riverstone whenever we are in the Yarra Valley.

Bride with pink bridesmaids

Photo of a bride and groom kissing aisle


We honestly cannot pick one part that was better than another. There was not a single thing on the day that we would have changed, we felt unbelievably lucky to have our wedding at Riverstone – it reflected what we are about completely. From the views, the relaxed atmosphere, amazing food and wine to the fun, friendly and family atmosphere it could not have been more perfect.

We are a very relaxed, happy couple and we wanted our wedding day to be a fun and love filled day with our closest family and friends. Our focus for the day was to ensure that everyone that came had a wonderful time – how they felt was just as important as how we felt. We only had a small reception (60 people) and had people fly in from all over Australia so we wanted them to know they were appreciated. We had a lot of focus on making sure our guests weren’t left wanting for anything! Just the fact that all of our loved ones were there to celebrate with us made everything so magical. I will never forget the day, the laughs or the love that we felt from everyone.


I knew even before I tried it on that Sareya was the dress for me. I know most brides say that they didn’t end up with a dress that they initially thought they would. I completely did. I had a very clear picture in my head of what I wanted and Sareya was it. I tried other styles on but the minute I had Sareya on they all paled in comparison. On the day I felt completely beautiful and amazing – but also totally myself. My dress was stunning, elegant and perfectly matched the theme and style I wanted on the day. It was everything I dreamt of and made me really feel so special.


Maria was an absolute superstar! I initially went into the store to find a particular dress – but was told it had been discontinued. Maria and her colleague sent us off to have a coffee while they reviewed their available stock and found “Sareya” for me. They ordered a sample in for me to try on. Three weeks later I came back and purchased that exact gown – it wasn’t the only dress I tried on but as soon as I put it on I knew it was the one. Maria was just so lovely and made me feel really comfortable (even though I was trying on a size 6 sample gown!!) throughout the entire process. She went out of her way to find the gown for me and gave me so much confidence with the decision to purchase.

Bride and groom walking away


It’s your day so make it exactly what you want and stop and enjoy it along the way. Justin and I were never about stuffy ceremony or tradition; we wanted our close family and friends around us to celebrate the people they know we are. We kept it relaxed, light hearted and fun and we both enjoyed every second of the entire day.

On a more practical note, start buying small things early (ie gifts for your bridal party, parents, and others). This tip was passed on to me by another friend that had recently gotten married and it was honestly the best thing. There were no last minute large bills or forgotten items to contend with in the lead up to the day (also use Etsy!! Its so good for so many things!).

EDDING DRESS RaffaeleCiuca / CELEBRANT Meg Marshall / VENUE Riverstone Estate / PHOTOGRAPHER Aria Photography