Stef & Dimi
If there ever was a wedding that proved that candlelight and nightfall are utterly romantic, then Stef and Dimi’s sophisticated evening wedding might just be it. The newlyweds, who chose Harvard Wang to capture their wedding, wanted a day that felt old school glam. “The vision was to party the way the Hollywood greats used to. An intimate affair, champagne flowing, brass blasting, all in a setting that felt like it could be the home of someone fabulous.”
The pair met in Europe, telling “Stef was travelling around Europe, seeing sights and stuffing her face with more pastry than you can poke a spoon at. Dimi was living an expat’s life in London, rolling out London Cycle Hire schemes, rattling off crude jokes and pub-crawling on a school night. Their paths crossed at Paddington Station, introduced by a mutual friend. And they spent the weekend flitting around London together – a sign of things to come. 2 years, a long bout of long-distance, a short stint together in Melbourne, and 7 long-haul flights later, they found themselves back at Paddington Station. This time, lugging their suitcases to their new London pad. After a spat about not having a trip planned for the Easter long weekend, Dimi booked a getaway to the Roman town of Bath, England. Given the last minute nature of the whole thing, Stef wasn’t anticipating that this would be THE TRIP. Even the super fancy hotel didn’t tip her off. So you can imagine her surprise, when they arrived back from dinner, to find the hotel room transformed – with rose petals and Champagne – and Dimi holding up the ring. She said yes. Obviously.”
Quat Quatta set the scene for the romantic evening, Stef and Dimi explaining “We held both the ceremony and the reception at Quat Quatta. We chose to keep it contained, short and sweet for the sake of our guests – one venue, five hours, booze flowing from the start (we don’t believe in breaks) – and the guests praised us for it. Quat Quatta is a magical venue, run by a dream team of event coordinators that made my job so much easier. Their courtyard offered the perfect little space for us to have a really special, intimate ceremony. The parlour – connected to the courtyard – was the ideal space for guests to move into following the ceremony. Just the right amount space to serve cocktails and champagne, and create an elegant but buzzy atmosphere. And the main dining area was awe-inspiring, with fixtures and furniture that ooze timeless elegance. The venue was already so beautiful, we hardly had to dress it at all. The food was so fantastic that our guests still comment on how much they enjoyed it, even now. And the service was faultless – you barely even knew the service staff were there, things just appeared to happen. I’d highly recommend the venue to any bride-to-be. Everyone who came to the wedding loved it.”
Stef and Dimi curated each detail to ensure the wedding had just the feel they wanted – including a glam floral arch by Botanics of Melbourne. Stef explains “The branding was super important to me. The save the dates, for example, were beautifully typeset and finished with matte gold foiling. It gave them such a lush feel. The formal invitations were sent in clear plastic envelopes embellished with a gold-foiled, debossed logo, which made them feel really contemporary. And the colour palette, fonts and logo were carried through everything, from the website to the cake boxes and the cocktail menus. The band had to have as much brass as we could fit in the venue – which really brought the party vibe and hit that elegant, glamorous feel we wanted. The floral arbour was my piece de resistance, though. An absolute must-have. Lovingly crafted by my AMAZING florist (he’s an artist, truly, and is so masterful in his work) it really gave the ceremony a wow factor that couldn’t we wouldn’t have had without it.”
Stef chose a dramatic gown from Pronovias, telling ” I’ve always liked to dress in clean lines, and dramatic silhouettes – over pattern or embellishing. And I wanted to steer clear of traditional designs since everybody knows me as one to defy convention. So when I came across the cape dress on the Pronovias website, I was instantly drawn to it. I took mum and dad with me to try it on, and when they saw me in it, their immediate response was “Now THAT is a Stef dress.” And they were right. It was me.”
Stef walked down the aisle to Michael Kiwanuka “Home Again “.
Stef and Dimi chose Melissa Fahey of Mine Forever to officiate their ceremony, remembering “We knew from the start that we wanted the ceremony to be intimate, contemporary, light-hearted and love-filled. Our celebrant – who also happens to be a really good friend of ours – Melissa Fahey, captured that perfectly. She helped us plan an unconventional ceremony, that incorporated the mandatory stuff without getting bogged down by it. She also came with fabulous ideas to make the ceremony truly ours – like inviting the bridal party to share their favourite memories of us instead of doing readings and having me sabre a bottle of champagne for an ending that was as dramatic as my dress. Setting the ceremony at dusk made it magical too – another idea from Mel. While it was stressful – we had to hustle or risk losing light before the end – it was perfect.”
The ceremony ended with a champagne sabrage of course.
Of their photographer, Stef and Dimi tell “Our photographer was Harvard Wang – a visionary, and our pick for best wedding photographer on the planet. He brings a super cool, documentary shooting style to the day. Which was really important to us – we wanted the photographs to be a true representation of everything that happened, rather than a range of staged poses. We put him under a lot of pressure on the day – he likes to shoot with natural light, but we chose to have the ceremony from dusk, which meant, for the first time, he was using flash. Plus, he had my brides-man (who happens to be a Creative Director) breathing down his neck to make sure he got the shots. But he absolutely flourished under the pressure. The shots look amazing, and the flash actually made for an interesting style that I think really suits him.”
The couple were more than happy to leave their day to the experts, with a little guidance, says Stef. “As someone who spends their days making big brands look brilliant, the wedding was my chance to brand us as a couple. I suppose the DIY aspect was setting the vision for the brand, pulling reference and inspiration, and briefing a team of three art directors – all of whom are great friends of mine. Writing briefs for the florist and the venue (you don’t need to do it, ladies, but I’m a perfectionist and didn’t want any detail missed). I got more hands on when it came to designing and building the website, but most of my time was spent coordinating.”
Of their first dance, Stef and Dimi tell “We chose another Michael Kiwanuka song – Get Along – played live and brilliantly by Baker Boys Band. We spent so much time over the years living long distance, that the song became kind of a running joke between us. The fact that we came through those times, I guess, made it an ironic song to choose, but a celebratory one nonetheless.”
Congratulations on your marriage Stef and Dimi! Thank you for sharing the stories of your wedding with us! Thank you also to Harvard Wang for sharing today’s wedding!
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