Daniel and Michael
Daniel and Michael wed in a dreamy ceremony overlooking the Melbourne city skyline and the Yarra River at Metropolis, one of Melbourne’s most renowned wedding venues.
How and when did you meet?
D - We met in August 2011. Michael had recently moved to Melbourne from Canberra, and I had just returned from a holiday in Europe. By chance, a mutual friend introduced us while out one night.
The funny thing was that Michael was incredibly shy, he hardly spoke, yet would mysteriously appear every weekend at the same places as me. We weren’t exactly looking for relationships at the time, but the friendship grew very quickly into love and the rest is history!
Tell us a little about the earlier days of your relationship…
D - They say love happens when you least expect it and that was the case for us both.
Michael lived in the city with a close friend, whilst I lived in the outer suburbs of Melbourne as I looked after my elderly grandmother.
The first 5 years of our relationship were challenging, whilst we wanted to take our relationship to the next level by living together, this was not possible for me as my grandmother was becoming more dependent on me living with her.
Michael would commute to the suburb’s multiple times a week and on weekends to spend time with my Gran and I. This challenge did demonstrate something pretty special about our relationship – its foundation was built on love, patience and understanding.
In 2012, (a year after we met), we took my grandmother back to London and Paris for her ‘final trip’. This was a very special time for us, and we created some life long memories together.
At this point I knew that I had met ‘THE ONE’, the person that I wanted to spend my rest of his life with. The love, patience and support Michael demonstrated during the first 5 years of our relationship made me know that together we could face and overcome any of life’s challenges.
What does Marriage mean to you?
Marriage means ‘forever’. It is the ultimate commitment and gesture you can give to another person. A commitment of partnership, a team and a promise to love, support and experience life with your ‘other’ person, everyday – for the rest of your life. There is something pretty amazing about how that feels.
Who proposed and how?
M - I proposed to Daniel in 2013, on the day of his 30th birthday. It’s a very unromantic story to be honest! We had people coming from interstate for Daniel’s birthday celebrations that night and flying out to Bali the next day – I was definitely short on time.
It was 6am and Daniel was sitting on the end of the bed putting his shoes on. We had to go to the airport, and we were running late, so I dropped to one knee and asked Daniel to marry me. As soon as Daniel said ‘yes’, I was quick to remind Daniel we were late for the airport and had to leave– romance at its best!
When did you get married?
We were married on Friday, 5th of April. 2019.
What was the main influence behind your wedding day?
The main influence we had was to create an experience for our guests that looked and felt uniquely ‘Daniel and Michael’. We spent many hours in design and planning to create something that was instantly recognisable as ‘us’. We wanted to treat our guests, as our way of saying thank you for the many years of love, support and friendship. We truly are very lucky.
What was the most important thing to you surrounding your wedding?
Bringing together our family and friends into one room for the very first time to celebrate just one thing – LOVE.
Where did you find the bulk of your inspiration?
M - We spent many hours on google, Instagram and Pinterest for inspiration which was incredibly helpful. We both had an input into the visual design, as it was important to us both that we were creating an experience that was uniquely ‘us’.
I was responsible for music and technical drama leveraging my musical background and passion for all things magic and fantasy.
Daniel was the key person who worked closely with our vendors and suppliers to bring the vision to life.
How did you choose your suppliers?
Finding suppliers was actually one of the easiest parts of organising the wedding!
Our first stop was Mr Theodore, we were passionate about working with vendors who were true advocates of SSM. We were lucky enough to be introduced to the amazing team at Metropolis Events and our incredibly talented photographer Corey Wright through the directory.
For other vendors we did a LOT of research, looked at previous work and portfolios. The wedding industry is complex to navigate and it’s important you leverage word of mouth, reviews, previous work and of course how you relate with the vendor personally to ensure you have high confidence in their ability to bring your vision to life.
We cannot speak highly enough of every single one of our vendors. Absolutely amazing to work with and far exceeded our expectations!
Any standout suppliers?
To call out any stand out suppliers would do them all an injustice! This answer could easily turn into a lengthy Oscar’s speech- they were all that amazing!
Our florist, Megan of Mordialloc Florists, deserves a special mention for her incredible work and for being an amazing person. We had a very clear vision of what we wanted – including a 6-page brief with mood boards – and she amplified our vision x1000. When we walked into the ceremony and reception we were absolutely blown away and far exceeded our expectations.
Corey, our photographer, and Tea, our videographer. The passion they have for equality and the meticulous detail they put into their craft was inspiring. To hear their excitement, and for them to say they are honoured to be part of our special day, was touching and meaningful. Their talent has left us with indescribable memories that we with both treasure forever.
Finally, Gina Liano, our celebrant and MC. People know Gina as an incredibly glamourous and larger than life personality- she’s all that and more... much more. We have developed a wonderful friendship and her sense of humour, passion, attention to detail and dedication for what she does is truly inspiring, and we are so lucky and blessed that she was part of our day.
Did you find it difficult to translate more common traditions into a ‘same-sex’ wedding?
One thing we always promised each other was that we were going to do our wedding our way. We kept the foundations, or ‘common traditions’, in place but altered them to suit us.
Our wedding party was made up of a handful of people closest to us. It didn’t matter what gender they were, we just wanted to have those special people standing by our side.
Walking down the aisle separately and accompanied by both our parents was a very special moment for everyone. It was a reminder to us both around how lucky we are to have such amazing parents who accept and love us unconditionally.
A traditional thing we didn’t do was a first dance. We agreed this very early in the planning as it felt it wasn’t reflective of us and felt like an ‘expected’ thing to do – we would rather have everyone up on the dancefloor together!
We also were together the night before the wedding and on the day of the wedding. We wanted to have a big celebration, so we had some of the wedding party stay with us in our hotel room the night before. On the day, we had our immediate family and wedding party with us in the room helped by some amazing food, music, laughter and bubbles!
What was the most difficult thing about planning your wedding?
Planning! Don’t estimate how difficult it is. We both manage quite large and complex projects for work and initially we thought it would be a piece of cake.
Planning a wedding, working full time and living life is difficult to balance. We had a monster excel file with at least 10 tabs keeping track of all milestones, costs and everything in between- it was a lifesaver!
On reflection we should have engaged a wedding planner to remove some of the stress, particularly in the weeks leading up to the big day. People deal with stress differently and we learnt to worry about the things that were in our control only - and not lose sight of the purpose of the day. It wasn’t about details, it was about LOVE.
Where did you spend your honeymoon?
A few days after the wedding we set off for an amazing 6 weeks in Europe. The Netherlands, Denmark, Italy, Greece and England. It was mind-blowingly incredible, and we started our new journey creating unforgettable memories together.
Any advice for other couples planning their day and finding it difficult to navigate the journey?
The greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return. Remember why you are getting married and stay anchored to this. This is your day and it is what you make of it – a celebration and reflection of love.
Plan your day (pre and post the ceremony) to ensure you create space for you to gather your thoughts and be present in every moment.
Remove yourself from the action for at least 10 minutes during the reception to just watch and observe your most favourite people having the time of their life based on the experience you have created. It makes the hard work and stress all worth it!
We wanted to ensure our grandparents who passed would be remembered and celebrated throughout the day and during the ceremony.
· Daniel had a beautiful small pin with a photo of his grandmother on the inside of his jacket.
· We had beautiful remembrance candles created that we lit in memoriam during the ceremony.
Entrance Song Only the Beginning of the Adventure, from The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe soundtrack
Exit Song Love Today, Mika
Reception Entry Song Euphoria, Loreen
Photographer Corey Wright Photographer
Videographer True Story Wedding Films
Venue Metropolis Events
Grooms Suits Zacmens Tailors
Flowers Mordialloc Florist
Cake Miss Ladybird Cakes
Celebrant & MC Gina Liano
Furniture Harry the Hirer
Rings AT Jewellery
Confetti Canons & Pyrotechnics The Hyper Group
Technical, Lighting & Sound Technical Events
Acoustic Performer Jonny Maldonado
Hashtag Printer Social Playground
Memorial Candles Iverson & Co
Custom Wedding Party Gifts Boutique Le Vin