Chloe + Mahmoud’s Gardens House Wedding

First meeting

At Phuket airport. Mahmoud tells me he was instantly mesmerised by Chloe’s beauty.
He had just shared a laugh and a hug with one of his friends, before he turned to see Chloe standing there behind him in the customs line, so he promptly broke into a huge smile and asked her if she would like a hug too!

First impressions

They immediately discovered a very similar sense of humour, and bonded over a love of travel and immersing themselves into different cultures, but it was their strong family ties and a love for sports that brought them close together….well, by sports I mean mainly AFL….meaning mainly Carlton….ok so maybe that was just Mahmoud that was obsessed with sport, but either way, it didn’t take long at all for their friendship to develop into the loving bond which led them to marry at the beautiful Gardens House in the Melbourne Botanical Gardens.

Vows

After lots of Lebanese family traditions starting the day off for Mahmoud, Chloe made her entrance at Gardens House as a breathtaking figure in custom Craig Braybrook Couture.
She named her handsome groom as “the most beautiful, smart, and generous person I have ever known”. Mahmoud promised to love, cherish and commit his heart + soul to Chloe for as long as he lived.

Mahmoud’s nephew stood up as the cute as button ring bearer, before a first kiss as husband + wife drew highly anticipated cheers and applause from a very festive group of guests!

Congratulations Mr + Mrs M and thank you for allowing me to share a part of your amazing day with you!

Photo credit

The incredibly talented Theo from Loco Photography for the beautiful images – what a superstar x

Gardens House Celebrants

Gardens House Celebrant Meriki Comito

Gardens House Celebrant Meriki Comito

Gardens House Celebrant Meriki Comito

Gardens House Celebrant Meriki Comito

Lebanese Wedding Traditions

Lebanese Wedding Traditions

Lebanese Wedding Traditons

Wedding Entourage

Bride's arrival

Beautiful Wedding Flowers

Page Boys job at the wedding

Here comes the bride

Here comes the bride

Here comes the bride

Gardens House weddings with Meriki Comito Celebrant

Gardens House weddings with Meriki Comito Celebrant

Gardens House weddings with Meriki Comito Celebrant

Gardens House weddings with Meriki Comito Celebrant

Gardens House weddings with Meriki Comito Celebrant

Gardens House weddings with Meriki Comito Celebrant

First kiss as husband and wife

Signing the register

Married!!Bridal party goals

Alone at last

Wedding kisses in the rain

Love in the rain on your wedding day

Wedding dance Lebanese style

Newlywed heaven

 

Chloe + Mahmoud | 02.11.2018

Photography: Loco Photography
Ceremony Location: Gardens House 
Celebrant: Meriki Comito 
Videography: IMedia Studios
Bridal Gown: Craig Braybrook Couture 
Bride’s Shoes: Valentino
Flowers : Floretta By Grace
Groom’s Cars: Pony Passion Cars
Bride’s Cars: RR Classic Car Hire
Ceremony Music: Four Seasons String Quartet
Reception Location: Metropolis

 

Do I need a Wedding Video?

In the beginning

Discussing wedding suppliers with my couples is always an exciting time for me. I get to find out who I’ll be working with in the coming months, and can assist couples by recommending all the fabulous industry legends I have come to know and highly respect. And I base my recommendations on the excellent quality and standards I have experienced first hand.

(My Recommended Suppliers Directory is here if you’d like to check them out!)

Decision time

Most couples I meet with have already locked in, or are about to lock in a photographer for their wedding, but I have to admit that I am surprised by just how many are still tossing up whether they need a wedding video as well.

My short answer is if you’re already thinking about it, then yes. I really think you do.

What will a video add to my day?

A professional wedding video will capture the fun banter during all the preparations in the morning. It will capture the emotion in your voice as you recite your vows, and the crazy loud reaction from your guests when you share your first kiss as a husband and wife. It will help you to recall the sensation of your first dance together, the playful nature of any young children who attended, and the sentiments of all the speeches made by yourselves, your family and your friends.

My husband would most likely argue that the haphazard, grainy capture on my brother law’s handicam proved sufficient enough, and in the end, saved us a few dollars and enabled us to get, who was at the time, an amazing photographer, but I can say now with absolute certainty, that if I could do it all again, I would most definitely employ one of the fabulous wedding videographers that exist now.


Wedding Video by Humdrum Films

Gone are the days of long winded and boring wedding video’s that feature the romantic strains of Madonna, Whitney Houston and Foreigner, and in their place, are the incredibly fun, candid and cleverly edited captures that flood our social media today!

Why is video important?

Before becoming a Marriage Celebrant, I had always entertained the idea that photos were for ever and that video’s were an expensive form of light entertainment that couples would drag out every anniversary and laugh at, but my mind has changed dramtically, and chatting to my lovely hairdresser, Leanne, recently, she mentioned that as there were many guests at her wedding who have since passed away, her wedding video has become an incredibly valuable source of comfort, as she can listen to their voices and experience the hugs, dances and words she shared with all her loved ones past, again and again, any time she wants.


Wedding Video by Film My Wedding

A recent bride of mine also mentioned that regardless of how hard she and her husband tried to “live in the moment”, the whole wedding ceremony was such an out of body experience.
“At one point, I remember wondering why I was standing up there, and why all my family and friends were staring at me – and I recall you talking and seeing your lips moving but I don’t remember hearing anything you said! It was such a bizarre but equally incredible experience!”
So I’m guessing they’re  going to be very grateful indeed to have a beautiful professional wedding video to refer to any time they like! 

Who do you recommend?

The following are some amazingly talented teams & individuals who, whilst blending into the surrounds like a video ninja, will have the best quality equipment (as well as know how to use it!) and will totally nail the ability to capture the best and most important moments of your day perfectly.

 
Wedding Video by Nathan Kaso Weddings

Their experience in the industry means they not only understand and embrace the pressure of only having that “one chance” to capture it all, they know exactly how to read a ceremony, position themselves to best capture all the main moments AND how to document your day in a way that allows to re-live it over and over again – both from your perspective and that of your family and friends. They will also be totally fun and awesome and not boring at all 🙂


Humdrum Films
Video Boutique
Burgess Video
Film My Wedding
Lunar Red
Directors Edge
Nathan Kaso Weddings

Allure Productions

Momento Films
Thick Black Frames

 

meriki@simplycelebrant.com.au
0417 394 792

Rain on Your Wedding Day – Do you have a plan B?

Feature Image by Ben Swinnerton 

Whats the weather forecast?

Nothing sets off the fear in many a brides heart more than the thought of rain on their wedding day. Weather is the one element you have no control over, but as long as you have a “Plan B”, you can rest easy it will still be a perfect day.

Have the conversation

The first point of conversation at all my planning meetings with couples who have chosen to marry outside, is what they plan to do if it pours with rain.

Most brides will have an alternative location already in place, which is amazing, but for those of you who are living out their planning days either crossing your fingers that it won’t rain, or attempting to use the power of prayer, voodoo, positive thinking or threats on someone’s life to prevent it from raining, I can tell you now with absolute certainty, that Melbourne weather is ridiculously unpredictable. It doesn’t care how desperately you want that beautiful sunshiny garden wedding and can totally ruin every one of those HOURS you have spent planning and preparing for that one big day.

Image result for 20090526172347_wedding-rain.jpg

Your guests should remember your wedding for the RIGHT reasons..

No bride or groom ever dreams of arriving at the ceremony looking spectacular, only to get out of the car and get completely soaked whilst they sink into the soggy ground down the aisle. And let’s not forget about your guests and husband to be, who have been waiting that 15-30 minutes prior to your arrival, miserably clutching an umbrella, or huddling under the nearest tree. In my experience, guests will often refuse to come and take a seat in the rain, preferring the shelter of a tree over witnessing the beautiful ceremony and vows you have spent months perfecting.

Melbourne Celebrants
Photo by LJM Photography

On a personal note

Oh, and just from my perspective as a celebrant, standing in the rain is not an ideal situation for us either. It’s rather difficult to balance our ceremony script folder or device, as well as a microphone and an umbrella all at the same time. And even in the cases of a light shower, our sound systems and legal documents don’t tend to do very well when they get wet either, so without the kind offer of bridal party members or guests to stand up and hold up umbrellas, you may be without sound or have a soggy marriage certificate as a keepsake!

Melbourne Marriage Celebrants
Image by Joseph Koprek Photography

An easy, budget friendly plan sometimes isn’t enough

Some couples will arrange for shelter  in the form of market umbrellas or gazebos. These are perfect for the days when there’s just some light rain or drizzle, but you will still need to be prepared for the case of heavier rain, as those options will not make any difference when the rain is coming in sideways!

Melbourne Celebrants
Image by Gerard Assi

Many brides are totally against a plan B, as they think its not going to be the ceremony of their dreams if they have to resort to it, but trust me when I say that unless dancing in the rain is your thing (and rainy day wedding photos can of course be absolutely magical!),  getting completely soaked during the legal parts and having grumpy, wet guests arriving at your reception afterwards is by no way going to contribute to that idea of a perfect day.

Talk to your reception venue

A lot of venues have some beautiful wet weather options, and if you’re lucky enough to book a venue that provides exclusivity, you can normally select which option you would prefer to go with, only a few hours in advance!

Melbourne Celebrants
Image by Meriki Comito

In other cases, if your venue is not able to provide an alternative rainy day option, they will most likely allow you to move your ceremony into the space you have booked for your reception.

In short, putting a solid wet weather contingency in place, will provide you with absolute peace of mind that no matter what the weather, you will be guaranteed a truly beautiful Plan B that can actually leave your guests thinking it was the Plan A all along! All it needs is a little organising in advance, so that every one of your suppliers can make sure it happens!

Melbourne Celebrants
Image by Jerome Cole Photography

In the end

But the most important point to remember is that at the end of the day, regardless of the fact that you have no control over the weather, you will be married to the person you have chosen to spend the rest of your life with, and that’s something the weather will make no difference to!

So if you’re planning an outside ceremony, and you don’t have a wet weather contingency, the following fabulous suppliers can help you to lock in your dream Plan B!
Otherwise just ask your humble celebrant. I’m pretty certain they’ll be able to send you in the right direction. Just for peace of mind x

 

Dann Event Hire
Harry The Hirer
The Style Co
Weddings of Distinction

meriki@simplycelebrant.com.au
0417 394 792

Kate + Lars’ Chateau Doré Wedding

Kate and Lars’ first meeting in Spain was one of those real ‘sliding door’ moments in life, when Kate stopped in Spain at the beginning of a 12 month world trip to join a Spanish language class, and met Lars a few days into her extended stay.

Kate thought Lars looked like a school boy swinging on the back of his chair in the Library, and Lars thought the same thing about Kate after spotting her strolling through the streets with her cute little backpack on! But when they were both invited to join a mutual friend for lunch, they hit it off immediately, and Kate cancelled her other travel plans to spend as much time in Spain with Lars as possible.

Six weeks later, Kate was obliged to continue on her world tour, but both she and Lars knew that their time together was so much more than just a summer romance, and Kate made arrangements to meet Lars on his home ground in Hamburg on December 12th 2009 – six years exactly before they married at the beautiful Chateau Doré in country Victoria.

As family & friends gathered from as far as Germany, Kate & Lars’s ADORABLE baby boy Sebastian arrived dressed in the cutest traditional ‘Lederhosen’ to the absolute delight of every guest, staff member, photographer & celebrant present!!

Grateful for my mother’s Austrian heritage, I was thrilled to be able to welcome Lar’s family in their mother tongue as well as incorporate a few German words into the ceremony itself!

Kate said that she loved Lars’s “genuine & pure love of life and that he sees the very best in every person he meets”, and Lars said that Kate “makes everything you do, feel & experience together absolutely amazing”.

After exchanging rings with a mixture of both German & English vows, Kate & Lars shared one of the most passionate first kisses that I have ever seen to the loudest of cheers!

And one of my favourite industry pros, Alli Oughtred, was there to capture it all xx

 

Kate + Lars | 12.12.2015

Celebrant: Meriki Comito
Ceremony & Reception Location: Chateau Dore
Photography: Alli Oughtred Wedding Photography
Flowers: The Eternal Vase

Stephen & Leigh’s Colourful Winery Wedding

When Stephen first laid eyes on Leigh at a friend’s BBQ about four years ago, he thought she was way out of his league, but went on to impress her with his polite nature and perfect manners, so the pair soon struck up a friendship, bonding over a mutual love of movies, cocktails, ‘phat’ beats and the great outdoors.

They both grew to love the unconditional love they both provided the other with, as well as the freedom of being able to be completely who they truly were. It was fun, and comfortable, and felt so right, that marriage had definitely become an option for the future.

It was during a two-week road trip through New Zealand that Stephen entertained the idea of a perfect proposal, but after waiting for that perfect moment to present itself, it became apparent that he was struggling to keep his big secret, and after three failed attempts to work up the courage, finally asked Leigh to marry him on the final night of their adventure.
It may have been a huge source of anxiety for Stephen, but according to Leigh, it was private, and personal, and absolutely perfect.

The beautiful Mandala Wines in the Yarra Valley was the location in which Stephen & Leigh chose to become husband and wife. In a stunning lace Marianna Hardwick gown, Leigh quietly declared to her handsome groom that “you love me even when I don’t love myself” (before quoting Beyonce!), after which Stephen told Leigh “your beaming smile can brighten my darkest days, and your beautiful laugh brings me more happiness than anything.”

It was an absolute pleasure to share this moment with Stephen & Leigh and I hope they achieve all their dreams of travelling the world together, starting a family of their own and enjoying all the adventures that life will bring x

A huge shout out to the super talented Zosia from Aparat Photography for these stunning images!!

 Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

 Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

Melbourne Wedding Celebrant | Meriki Comito |Stephen & Leigh's Mandala Wines Wedding | Photo: www.aparat.com.au

 

Stephen & Leigh | 16.04.2016

Celebrant: Meriki Comito
Ceremony & Reception Location: Mandala Wines
Photography: Aparat Photography
Ceremony Arch & Bunting: Created by the clever Groom!
Bridal Gown: Marianna Hardwick
Bridesmaids Dresses: Rodeo Show
Flowergirl Dress: H&M
Groom’s Attire: Joe Black
Bouquet’s, Boutonniere’s and Flower Crown: Debbie O’Neill
Cake & Bomboniere: The Bride’s own creations

Julia & Craig’s Pioneer Women’s Memorial Garden Wedding

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Elegant, composed & simply beautiful, Julia waited at the top of the hill as I came to greet her before the start of the ceremony in the Pioneer Women’s Memorial Garden. “Don’t say anything nice to me or I’ll start crying again!” she warned me, but as she made her way down the aisle to Regina Spektor’s “Real Love”, it was Craig’s turn to shed a small silent tear as he saw his bride for the first time.

In the sun drenched courtyard, Craig promised his “Boo” to share in her dreams and build a home filled with learning, laughter & light, after which Julia declared that she “will look with joy down the path of our tomorrows, knowing we will walk it together side by side, hand in hand and heart to heart.”
A stylish drink station provided ample refreshment for guests as they celebrated with the happy newlyweds after the ceremony

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au    Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au   Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au  Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Melbourne Celebrant | Meriki Comito | Pioneer Womens Memorial Garden Wedding | Photo: www.shaunguestphotography.com.au

Julia & Craig | 24th January 2014

Celebrant: Meriki Comito
Venue: Pioneer Women’s Memorial Garden
Photography: Shaun Guest | Bendigo Wedding Photography
Bridal Gown: Collette Dinnigan
Flowers: Zoe Webb