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Real Wedding | Vodia + Victor

Tell us about yourselves!

Victor and I have know each other since grade one in primary school, but he transferred to another school in grade 2 and since then we have had no contact for the next 14 years or so. It was him that found me online in our late university years, we started chatting as friends over long distances and eventually became a couple. We spent many years together in Shanghai, later in San Francisco where Victor did his master’s degree and worked. We now have settled back in Melbourne where Victor continues his career as a Landscape Architect and me exploring many of my hobbies in painting, creative crafts and yoga. Looking back the years we’ve been together and spent across the three continents, it has been a truly wonderful and rewarding journey, where we matured as a couple and experienced the world along the way. Our wedding is an accumulation of this journey and prelude to a new chapter ahead.

Why did you decide to get married where you did?

We researched many different types of wedding venues prior before settling down with Stones of the Yarra Valley in the renowned wine region in Victoria. Stones offers a unique set of amenities including a beautiful ceremonial chapel, expansive vista and spacious dining hall called ‘The Barn’. We particularly love the provincial and rustic setting and architecture that set the venue apart from many other wineries in the region. After visiting the site a couple of times we just felt like the vibe really clicks with what we envisioned our wedding to be, so after much comparison it became a no brainer.

How many guests did you have?


What was your budget?

We didn’t have a clear budget in mind initially, but our wedding planner Rosie of I Do Planning helped us narrow down a budget based on what we wanted to achieve, and we relied on her experience to come up with inventive ways to manage the budget. For example, we have spent more on crucial elements such as the floral arrangements, venue etc, and saved on elements such as decoration and stationery where we can DIY and source from more indie and boutique suppliers. We really enjoyed the entire process with Rosie.

Tell us about your outfits!

In my pursuit of the perfect wedding dress, I sought something that would resonate with my identity, something inimitably Vodia. I've never envisioned myself swathed in layers of tulle and satin, walking down the aisle like some storybook princess. My personality is somehow gender neutral, neither overly feminine nor masculine, that's when I found the Vivienne Westwood Galaxy Cape gown - an echo of this balance, a blend of the classic and the contemporary, a gown that defies the traditional while still enveloping me in an almost ethereal grace. Westwood's offerings are not just dresses; they are statements of defiance against the ordinary, with signature nipped-in waists and masterful draping that have crowned them the winner among many modern brides.

As for the shoes, while many brides glide on their big day in the sparkle of Jimmy Choos, I chose the Maison Margiela Tabi Mary-Janes. The choice might raise eyebrows at a traditional wedding, but for me, they are a perfect fit. They're not just for a single day's wear; these are shoes that I'll walk in again and again, finding the same joy in their design and comfort with each step. The Tabis are more than shoes; they're a symbol of beauty in enduring design, fashion that transcends the occasion.

Victor wanted to go for a neutral grey colour outfit that reminisce the old money style of 1920-30s Shanghai. He opted for an Australian based menswear brand M.J. Bale which proud themselves on carbon neutral practices, and the Australian Merino wool that are weaved in Italy and tailored in Japan. Conveniently, it had a store on Collins Street that Victor can go for fit out during his work breaks. The entry suit is custom and tailor-made with a fabric he chose, including a waistcoat that accentuated the old money style that he was going for. The 3 pieces took one month to make and turned out really great.

What was the most important aspect for you, in terms of planning your wedding?

We wanted our wedding to subvert expectations, especially because we have many guests from overseas who might have experienced weddings in certain ways. We didn’t want to make compromise to what the trend is or what traditions we need to follow. We want to make sure every element we planned for are what we desired, and we present the best of ourselves and what represent us to the guests.

If I were to use an analogy, it is like Apple’s branding, always being the one that sets trends rather than following them. I think at the end of the day, this persistency really rewarded us in big way, not only that it gave myself and Victor a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, it also gave the attendees a unique and joyful experience that they will memorise for a life time.

Were there any elements that were important for you to incorporate?

Both coming from designer background, Victor and I had a clear vision for the aesthetic of the wedding that is very neutral, minimalistic and modern. Personally, we were not a fan of traditional Chinese weddings with very festive colours and some of the traditional ceremonies and games, and we were fortunate that our Chinese families on both sides are open-minded and supportive, which allowed us to design all the elements and details to our liking.

We put a lot of focus on the floral arrangement and styling, which we had some reference for. We held multiple meetings with Jess Gale from Sassafras Wedding to nail down the floral arrangement that really brought out the neutral toned aesthetic that we were after. Other elements such as the stationery, signage and deco such as plinth and tassels were all sourced to accentuate that aesthetic.

In absence of some of the traditional Chinese ceremonies and processes, we were able to have the time for some of our guests from around the world to shine and contribute with performances, which really made our wedding unique and fun. Our first dance was a 70’s disco which was light-hearted and somehow rebellious, which allowed everyone to have a good laugh and have a good time.

Any tips for couples getting married?

While we understand everyone’s expectation for wedding is different, we found ourselves benefiting a lot from having a wedding planner. Victor is very busy with his career and being somehow an artist myself I am not the best candidate at organising every little detail and be on top of things. Having a wedding planner really gave us the peace of mind and made the preparation and flow on the day that much more organised.

Are there any vendors that you would like to tell us a little more about?

As I have mentioned many times, our wedding planner I Do Planning, who made everything possible and our dream wedding come true.

The florist Sassafras Wedding, Jesse is an experienced and talented florist who were able to translate what we specifically had in mind into reality.

Last but not least, our photographer Emotions and Math, whose unique style and talent in both film and digital photography captured every moment of our wedding in timeless class and style.

Photographer: Emotions and Math @emotionsandmathweddings | Videographers: Tailored Films and reel from Emotions and Math @emotionsandmathweddings | Ceremony Location: Stones of the Yarra Valley - The Chapel @stonesoftheyarravalley | Reception Location: Stones of the Yarra Valley - The Barn @stonesoftheyarravalley | Celebrant: Lei Lei MC @leileiwedding | | Flora: Sassafras Wedding @_sassafrasswedding_ | Entertainment: Baker Boys Band @bakerboysband | Planning + Styling: I Do Planning @ido_planning | HMUA: YAYA Makeup @yaya_makeup_mel |  Catering + Beverages: Stones of the Yarra Valley @stonesoftheyarravalley | Cake: Crazy Cakey Amy @crazy_cakey_amy |  Stationery: Fielding Milligan @fielding_milligan | Bridal DressVivienne Westwood Galaxy Cape gown @viviennewestwood | Reception Gown: Montsand @montsand_official | Dancing Dress: Zimmermann @zimmermann | Groom's Suit: M.J. Bale @mjbale | Engagement Ring: Antique | Wedding Rings: Cartier @cartier | Shoes: Maison Margiela Tabi Mary-Jane Pumps @maisonmargiela | Pearl Necklace: Vivienne Westwood @viviennewestwood | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bec and Bridge @becandbridge | Groomsmen Suits: M.J. Bale @mjbale | Car Hire: Always Classic Cars @alwaysclassiccars | First Look Location: Coomalie House Mid Century inspired home – Airbnb | Chandeliers: Chandelier Hire


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