A small garden ceremony of 28 guests and getting married on their 5th anniversary in the city they fell in love, Melbourne, made for one unforgettable day for Vicky & James.

#RCRealBride Vicky wore a Madison James gown purchased from our Armadale boutique. An embroidered detailed halter neck bodice with a plunging deep V, paired with a soft Chiffon skirt and a sleek racerback silhouette of this gown is both modern and sophisticated.

Photographer – Liz Barnes Photo


James had moved to Melbourne from England in the spring of 2013 and 6 months later Vicky moved to Melbourne from Canada. Vicky’s sister had connected her with a mutual friend that had been living in Melbourne who then invited her to a Rugby match on her second night in town. This friend worked with James and they were introduced that night and that’s where it all began – 6 weeks later they went on their first coffee date which turned into 6 hours of laughs, several coffees, and an undeniable connection that blossomed from there! Neither of them expected their travels abroad would lead to love and one day marriage – but 5 years later their story has seen them travel the world, move abroad to Canada and back again to Melbourne where it all started and where they ended up saying their “I do’s”!


After 2.5 years of dating James and Vicky went back to Canada to formally meet her family in person (after many informal FaceTime meetings!). James had been designing the ring for nearly 6 months prior to leaving for Canada and successfully managed to smuggle it over in his luggage without Vicky noticing. Despite a very busy itinerary upon arriving to Vicky’s home the couple managed to sneak away for a day to go for a hike in a beautiful town called Tobermory. They got about 15 minutes into the hike when James suggested that they put their feet in the water and when Vicky turned around James was down on one knee! After many, many tears Vicky managed to reply with a very enthusiastic YES! It was completely unexpected but it was so unbelievably special that James had planned to propose while Vicky was home with her family and friends! A moment they will never forget!


Vicky and James were absolutely delighted that they were able to host their wedding in the city where they fell in love! They were very keen to show their 28 guests (17 of which had flown from Canada, Mexico, Ireland and England to attend their day) the things they love most about Melbourne which led to a very unique wedding day. The ceremony was held in the Kings Domain Gardens where the couples summer days are often spent enjoying the sun and lavish picnics – so of course following the ceremony the couple had a stunning picnic setup with charcuterie boards and lots of bubbles to enjoy while listening to the speeches. Following this, all of the guests made their way to Vicky and James’ favorite restaurant – Mr Miyagi – where they had reserved the upstairs function space to indulge in some of the greatest food and cocktails in this city! And of course once everyone was full up on food and drink they needed to dance it off so the group headed across the street to the Wolf and I where 70 additional friends of the couple were waiting to dance the night away! There were a lot of elements to the day but ultimately the couple felt it was a perfect representation of their love for Melbourne – and their love for each other!


ALL OF IT! The day was absolutely flawless – despite the forecast calling for rain the sun came out just as the ceremony was about to start and set the perfect backdrop for the perfect day! Watching Vicky and James’ family and friends laughing and getting to know each other was the cherry on top of it all – it was exactly what the couple had been envisioning when planning their special day!


Vicky found the dress shopping experience rather overwhelming – there were so many options and every new shop visit just seemed to complicate it even more! Until she met Carmela at Raffaele Ciuca in Armadale! Carmela picked out 4 dresses in the shop – which were all very different in style – but as soon as Vicky slipped into this Madison James dress the search was over! It was absolutely not at all the style that Vicky had envisioned herself wearing – but she couldn’t have felt any more beautiful in it! Before she knew it Carmela was popping the champagne and Vicky was saying yes to that dress!


Carmela was a total angel to work with – she made the process so easy and she was genuinely keen on helping me find the dress of my dreams!


Plan the wedding YOU want – we were very fortunate that most of our guests were abroad and not able to input their ideas and suggestions but regardless we are SO glad that we stood firm on our vision for the day – it was so unique and entirely ‘us’ – a day that we will never forget! Compliment each other every day!!! There’s nothing more comforting than having a partner who doesn’t hesitate to comment on how hard you’ve been working lately, or on your good hair day, or even on your excellent bed-making skills – it all counts and adds up to a wonderfully loving relationship! Oh, and laugh, and dance with each other – life’s too short not to embrace the funny moments and bad dance moves!


Venue: Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden – Kings Domain Gardens Melbourne

Church/Celebrant: Friend

Flowers: Hello Blooms

Cake: Eat Cake (Facebook)

Hair: The Bride!

Makeup: The Bride!!

Shoes: Forever New

Invites: Greenvelope (online e-vites)

Suits: Ties and pocket squares from The Tie Garden

Band/DJ: David Carreno

Bridesmaid Dresses: Folkster

Bonbonerie: N/A

Table Centrepieces: I’m Plattered (@implattered) / Picnic Styling Co (@picnicstylingco)

Rings: Groom – Manly Bands