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Wedspiration > Real Weddings > REAL WEDDING: Chelsea + Mitchell – Backyard Wedding
Real Weddings
REAL WEDDING: Chelsea + Mitchell – Backyard Wedding
Friends since they were 15, Chelsea and Mitch planned a spectacular outdoor wedding at Mitch’s family home. The main standout? What they wore.
Words by Karina Lowndes
8 January 2021

It’s mind-boggling to think this stylish couple planned their backyard wedding at Mitch’s family home in just a few short weeks, thanks to the pandemic. It was intimate, simple and peppered with personal details (including homemade lemon butter wedding favours).

Captured by their friend Charlotte Exton Photography, you can see the entire celebration below and read their story.


How long have you been together and how did you meet?

We had been hanging out since we were 15 on and off till we were 18. We started dating and three and half years later we were married. We both knew each other growing up in church.

Can you tell us a bit about your proposal?

I was living out of home at the time and we had waited a while to get engaged. I had been anticipating it for some time and then on a spontaneous Wednesday night after work, Mitch had hijacked a family picnic by the lake at sunset to propose to me. It was perfect and simple, very us.

Tell us about what you guys wore, how did you choose your get-up?

My dress was a two piece which I put together. The top was Prea James Bridal and the skirt was Wendy Makin. It was completely unexpected for me – I had such a different vision of what I wanted but I loved how it turned out. I found it just by looking on Instagram. I felt so comfortable in it all day which made me relax on the day and I just loved how easy it was to wear.

Mitch wore a coat which was very unique. He always wanted something different but still classy and him. He loved it because it was different but also very comfortable to wear.

Did you write your own vows? How did you find that experience?

We did write our own vows. It was something we always wanted to do to be vulnerable about our relationship in front of family and friends. Mitch was quite nervous to write his own vows because he felt a lot of pressure. We just constantly reminded each other that it’s a moment shared between the two of us and has to just come from the heart. Our goals were to just be ourselves and vow things that were in our hearts.

How did you decide on the location of your wedding and the venue itself?

When it came to our wedding we didn’t really know what we wanted. We loved the first venue we looked at in Palm Beach but when COVID hit we had to change our plans. We changed them about three times before we decided to just wait and basically plan everything three weeks out from the date. We ended up doing it at the home Mitch grew up in and it couldn’t have been more perfect and us.

How many guests did you have?


What was your wedding budget? Did you stick to it?

Our budget was around 20k. I think it’s hard to pinpoint a budget until you start but we ended up spending less which was amazing! Something like 16-18k but obviously doing it at Mitch’s family home made a massive impact to the budget which helped.

Were you inspired by a particular wedding style or vibe when bringing your day to life?

I knew I wanted the wedding to be a mix of a modern feel with a vintage touch. I definitely drew some inspiration from different Pinterest images and all that but the style just came together as it came along.

Where did you gather your inspiration?

Mostly Pinterest, Instagram and just looking at other weddings but I always asked myself if it felt ‘us’, not just trying to be someone else’s wedding.

Did you partake in any DIY elements to your day?

Yes! Nearly everything was DIY. As it was at the house, we had to hire everything ourselves, get caterers, etc. We did our own wedding favours which were my mother-in-law’s lemon butter recipe which was perfect.

How did you find your dream team?

I have a lot of friends who are married so when it came to finding florists, photographers and everything I definitely had lots of suggestions! For the day we were lucky enough to have friends and family help with all the setting up which took a massive weight off our shoulders!

In a few sentences, how would you describe your wedding?

Our wedding was us. It was simple yet beautiful. It had a very intimate feeling about it and everyone was very relaxed. Our day ended up being so perfect and we wouldn’t change anything.

What are some of the most memorable and special moments of your wedding?

Mitch absolutely sobbed when I walked down the aisle which was unexpected but so beautiful. In the morning we wrote each other letters which made me feel so at ease because I felt like he was right there talking to me. When we arrived to the reception out the back of the house, I hadn’t seen the finished set up and I was absolutely breath-taken. It was beyond my dreams and so beautiful.

Were there any traditions you did not partake in or any specific to your family or religion that were special to you?

Yes, we are both Christians so it was important that the day was centred around loving God through our relationship. We did worship at our ceremony and prayed together and it was probably the most special thing about the day.

Finish this sentence. The best (or most unique) thing we did at our wedding was…

Having it at Mitch’s family home and all in the same place.

Any funny elements that just made the day or lead up even more amazing?

Right before I walked down the aisle my top came undone at the back. The bridesmaids had already walked and my sister who was my MOH had to quickly tie it back up and only just made it in time for her to walk down. It was hilarious.

backyard wedding
backyard wedding
backyard wedding

Do you have any standout suppliers that you would recommend in a heartbeat? 

Definitely! The Apparatus was my florist – she is a small local florist and WOW. She really made my vision come to life. Flowers were something I really valued and she just did the most amazing job in the lead up and just nailed it on the day! Charlotte our photographer was also amazing. I knew her personally and having someone I know shoot our wedding made the experience so relaxing and we could totally be ourselves in front of the camera.

Now that you’re married, what’s the best piece of advice you can give other couples in the middle of planning their own weddings?

Biggest piece of advice would be keep your heart focused on what really matters. It’s so easy to get caught up in every detail and almost obsess over the day being absolutely perfect that we can forget we are marrying the girl/guy of our absolute dreams!

My advice would be to work on your relationship as you prepare to be husband and wife and delegate as much as you can.

What are you most looking forward to now that you’re married?

Living together! We chose to wait to live together prior to marriage and it was the best thing. It has been so special and obviously has its challenges but growing together in our home is such a joy and reward!

CREDITS: Photos Charlotte Exton Photography // Video Harvey Creative // Flowers The Apparatus // Venue private property // Catering RDM Pizza Australia // Bridal gown Prea James Bridal via Hope X Page and Wendy Makin via Marry Me Bridal // Brides shoes Senso // Accessories Acomposition // Bridesmaid dresses Shona Joy // Bridesmaid gifts Elk and Bloom via Etsy // Groom and groomsmen suits Uniqlo (jacket), Zara (pants) and Cos (shirt) // Grooms shoes Dr Martens // Groomsmen gifts Anvil Hide Leatherworks // Rings Meg Maskell Fine Jewellery // Hair Chloe Grace // Celebrant Mitchell Hammond // Transport G Brothers // Furniture hire Simply Seated //  Photo booth Open Air.



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