Real Wedding // Caroline & Rick’s Surprise Elopement

Caroline and Rick have had quite the rollercoaster with their wedding plans this year (as most couples getting married in 2020!). We had all their planning in place and then the second wave of COVID-19 hit Victoria (where the majority of their guests were coming from). They sadly had to postpone to next year. The week their wedding was originally due to take place, Caroline called our team to see if there was any way we could help them elope on their original wedding date. They had decided to elope now and party later! We loved this idea and were so excited to be able to make this happen. Over the space of two days, we found a venue, arranged the catering and pulled together a beautiful intimate day for just the two of them. Read their lovely story below.

Tell us your story, how did you both meet and where did the proposal happen?
Rick and I met through mutual friends in 2016 and we both instantly had a connection. Within a matter of weeks, we were a couple! Rick proposed two years later on a beautiful clear day at the snow, on a husky dog sled tour at Dinner Plains in Mount Hotham. The dog sled tour took us to a flat plain at sunset and we had a freezing cold picnic before Rick proposed. 

We know the pandemic meant you had to sadly postpone your wedding day, tell us about your decision to elope now and celebrate later?
We had already postponed our wedding that was originally intended to be held on 1st August 2020. We had postponed to 6th November 2020 and after things started to get a bit hectic in Victoria (the majority of our guest list are located there), we just decided to postpone our wedding again. We were already going away to Byron Bay to celebrate the “day that would have been” for our first wedding date when Rick called me four days before we were leaving and had the wild suggestion that we elope on our original wedding date and not tell a soul!

We are both pretty calculated people, so this was a pretty bold decision for both of us but we are so happy we went through with it. The day was so special and intimate and all about us which was so wonderful after a year of disappointment. We are also “reinventing” weddings for 2020, and have decided to still hold a reception-style party at our original wedding venue, Byron Bay Surf Club next year. We will play our ceremony video and have an awesome party with our friends and family!

Your wedding day may have not been what you had envisioned but tell us what you enjoyed about eloping now and moving the celebration with your friends and family to a later date?
We loved the relaxed and somewhat unplanned vibe of the day, we just went with the flow and did what pleased us, and it was honestly so perfect. We thought that we may have felt like we would be missing out not having any guests in attendance to the ceremony, but afterwards, we both reflected that it made it even more special and now we can’t wait to celebrate with our guests next year.

Do you have any advice to couples who are going through the same thing?
This is such a difficult time for the wedding industry right now, including the bride and groom! Try to think about what is ultimately going to make you happy, and what the day means for you. Your day will come, and hopefully, be bigger and better than originally planned! 

Caroline & Rick xo

Venue: Fig Tree Restaurant // Photographer: Tom Judson // Videographer: Anchored Cinema // Catering: Fig Tree Catering // Furniture & Styling: The Wedding Shed // Planning & Coordination: Byron Bay Weddings

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