Casual Melbourne Wedding: Anna & Luke

Lakshal Perera

January 24, 2014


The beautiful wedding of Anna and Luke took place at Victorian Marriage Registry, Melbourne followed by a casual lunch at Golden Orchids Malaysian Restaurant (where they had their first date!) and an evening reception at North Fitzroy Star. Nothing about this wedding was traditional. The bride wore a non-wedding dress from, the cakes and desserts were made by their loved ones instead of a wedding cake and instead of an expensive wedding car they either walked or caught taxi’s from place to place.


“Our theme was ‘do whatever we want’,” explained Anna. “We based all our decisions around doing things we loved, in places we loved, with people we loved. We never really get it when people say they want a wedding that is ‘very us’. Of course it’s going to be very you – you’re the one making all the decisions!”

“When we got engaged our married friends had a lot of advice for us”, she continued. “Over and over again we heard them say ‘the day goes so quickly’, ‘you’ll hardly remember it’, and ‘it was hard to spend time with everyone’. Those words really stuck with us when we were planning our day.”


“We were married at noon at the Melbourne registry office in front of just 20 people – our immediate family and two friends each. Being such a small group it felt incredibly intimate and sacred, we didn’t have the anxiety of a hundred eyes watching us so we were very present in the moment with each other.”

“After the ceremony we all walked to China town and had lunch at the restaurant where Luke and I had our first date. We did speeches at lunch that were very deep and emotional, there were a lot of tears! The lunch was really special for us, it slowed the whole day down and allowed us to spend quality time with our parents, siblings and very close friends without the stress and frenetic pace that some of our married friends had experienced at their own weddings.”


“After lunch and some photos Luke and I checked into our hotel, and read the letters we’d written each other before the day. We also had a short but much needed nap! Making time for just the two of us to be alone and take in the enormity of what we had just done was another thing that really helped to slow the day down and let the details sink in.”

“While Luke and I were taking time out, our friends and family gathered at one of our favourite little pubs and we had a roving magician to keep them entertained! Luke and I arrived at 6 and from then the whole night was probably more like what a traditional wedding is. Hilarious speeches, delicious canapés and desserts, great music and awkward but enthusiastic dancing. We really got the best of both worlds – small intimate ceremony AND big raucous party. It was exactly what we wanted.”


“We spent the majority of our budget on the photography, because preserving the memory of the day was really important to us”, Anna concluded. “I knew right from the day we got engaged that I wanted Lucky to capture our wedding because his images are so authentic and beautiful. I think you can see that it was totally worth it.”

“We’re both pretty practical people so it was easy for us to save on things that other people might have stronger emotional reasons to spend a lot of money on, like the dress. I didn’t want to look like a cookie cutter bride, I wanted to look like me so all of my searching was on regular fashion outlet sites online. I found the dress for 60% off about three weeks after we got engaged and it was perfect. Buying online also meant I avoided the whole wedding dress shopping experience, which I know is a big highlight for some but was a source of major anxiety for me.”


“Finally, we picked a venue that had a ton of character and atmosphere so we spent next to nothing on decorations. No flowers, centrepieces, table settings, or other stuff like that. My advice to future brides and grooms would be to remember that your wedding isn’t a photo shoot! Hire a good photographer and then just concentrate on having a good time. You’ll save yourself a lot of money, stress, and time on ultimately insignificant details and you’ll be able to better focus on what’s actually important – getting married!”