I’ve always been a fan of simplicity – some of my very favorite weddings have been the simplest. Nothing fussy or overdone, just love and loveliness. Julia and James had just such a wedding, and I love how they described it, “The whole evening felt intimate, warm and fun. It was the happiest blur of our lives.” Photos by Jonathan Ong.

Julia’s bridesmaids each wore the black dress of their choice – a surefire way to keep attendants happy!

Says Julia, “Our wedding was an incredibly personal celebration of our relationship – we wrote our own vows, were married by a longstanding and dear friend, and another friend wrote a beautiful poem as a reading for our ceremony.”

Thank you to Julia and James for answering some of our questions about the wedding…

Why did you choose this for your wedding? We wanted our wedding to feel warm, relaxed and more like a party than a formal event. We are very much urban dwellers, so the venue was chosen because of its location in the center of Melbourne’s central business district, and its commanding views of the cityscape.

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? The streets where we live – the beautiful open spaces and street art that are a context for our lives. We also thought about the elements which would help to create the party atmosphere – for example, we had our photo’s taken before the wedding so that we could launch straight into the festivities after the ceremony, and we chose a band who appeals to everyone.

Did you include any traditions in your wedding? As the bride has a Polish background, we incorporated a few Polish touches in the wedding. We had a traditional Polish blessing after we were ‘presented’ to our loved ones, which involved sharing a taste of bread so that we will never go hungry, a sip of wine so that we will enjoy the sweetness in life, a pinch of salt so that we can overcome any bitterness in life and were given a silver coin so that we can be in good health and without financial stress. Vodka, specially flavoured by Julia’s father, brother and James, also flowed throughout the evening, along with many rounds of the traditional celebration song, ‘Sto Lat.’



Photography: Jonathan Ong / Venue: Alto in Melbourne, Australia / Bride’s dress: Jane Hill / Groom’s suit: Filippa K / Groom’s tie: J.Lindeberg / Floral design: Cecilia Fox / Music: Mister featuring Stella Angelico / Catering: Damm Fine Food

23 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings
  1. Wendy

    LOVE the wedding dress, it’s SO beautiful!

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  2. Candace

    I loved that the bride incorporated Polish traditions (I’m Polish too!).
    I think it’s so important that couples really focus on ways to show their guests their love for each other. Simple and intimate is the way to go in my book!

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  3. ellen

    The idea for the bridesmaids is perfect….smiles.

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  4. forget.me.knot.weddings

    Jonahtan Ong always gets it right and this is one perfectly understated beautiful wedding!

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  5. Cocroft & Delbridge

    Oh my goodness. I am in love with the bride’s dress…the lace details are simply stunning! It is also so neat that they incorporated their heritage!

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  6. Nikki {Perpetually Engaged}

    Her dress is stunning. The whole event is really…

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  7. Amanda

    OMG! How do I get my hands on that dress? I’m not even engaged, but I think it’s the one for me already! :)

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  8. Alicia

    The dress is stunning – my grandmother wore a similar dress in black lace to a Supreme Court function in the 70s and I’ve had my eye out for an updated version for future inspiration and here it is!

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  9. Lisa Lyons

    Simply elegant!


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  10. Kirby {Colors of Honey}

    I do love a simple wedding aswell. something about the purness of the event and the real meaning behind the day…

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  11. Jennifer -CoteWrites

    I adore small weddings, too! Thanks for sharing such stylish simplicity, Kathryn. This is just the sincere-wedding pick-me-up I needed during my lunch break. :)

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  12. The Perfect Palette

    I heart her dress! really + truly. xo, chrissy.

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  13. elaine

    stylish couple! love the BMs and their corsages. :)

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  14. lydia {ever ours}

    love LOVE her dress! such gorgeous photography too!

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  15. Jasmine

    I love the wedding attire. I think it’s great that all the bridesmaids have different style dresses instead of restricting them all to one type of dress!

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  16. Gaelan @ Uschi and Kay

    I think letting your bridesmaid choose their dress is key. I only have one bridesmaid so it made things easy, but I love seeing the bridesmaids’ different personalities come through in their attire.

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  17. JM

    Does anyone know where I can find a very similar looking dress in the States? I looked up the designer and she’s based in Australia and I don’t think she sells to the U.S.

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    • lindsay

      Have it custom made. It’s funny when I saw that photo of her dress because that is pretty much exactly the same dress I’m having someone make for me.

  18. jenn {bow tie & bustle}

    crazy in love with the bride’s dress….so stunning! and i LOVE that the bridesmaids are all rocking their own styles!

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  19. Jennifer

    Her dress is gorgeous! I had to link to it. Thank you!

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  20. CN

    LOVE her dress! And the photos are just gorgeous!

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  21. Sally @ ourdreamlives

    such a beautiful dress. i also love the idea of letting the bridesmaids choose their own… i think they look fab together!

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  22. G’DayChef

    What a lovely couple. The bride is stunning. They look good together. The venue is very beautiful with the pool background. It is so romantic and very neat. Send our best wishes to the couple from us here in Catering Melbourne .

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