After two postponements, Kellie & Vanessa brought together a ten-guest elopement in just a few short weeks.
Who are Kellie & Vanessa?
Kellie is a Public Servant, and Vanessa is a Veterinary Nurse.
We love road trips, spending time with our friends, rides on Kellie’s motorbike, watching documentaries, visiting the snow and the beach, exploring new places, travelling around Australia, and spending time with our furbabies.
We have been together for 6.5 years and meet online! Kellie was a day away from deleting her profile when I sent through a ‘Hi there.’ After a few days, we exchanged numbers, only for Kellie to send me a photo of an old man taking a selfie, and she hasn’t stopped making me laugh since.
We then met in person in Melbourne. My best friend and I were going for a weekend away, and I asked Kellie to come. She said she was busy only to surprise me a few days before with a photo of her itinerary. We spent the weekend in Melbourne laughing and coming to the realization we had found our person.
Aside from your elopement, what is your favorite memory together?
There are so many to choose from!
One that stands out is when we were living in central Queensland. We decided to take the Jeep for a road trip to drive to a National Park. Just after the park’s entry, there was a herd of cattle lying across the road, we beeped them out of the way, and they slowly got up and moved for us.
We kept driving, enjoying our day and passing cattle and horses, only to end up at a fence. We got out and started patting the horses while saying it was weird for a national park to have a fence like this. Then we heard a noise in the distance, only to turn around and see an old ute tearing up the dirt road like something out of Wolf Creek. We quickly jumped back in the car and realized we didn’t have any phone service. The car approached us and asked us what we were doing, to which we responded, ‘we aren’t in the national park, are we?’. The guy then told us we were on his property and had been driving around disturbing his cattle. We quickly got out of there and spent the rest of the day laughing at our little adventure.
Tell us about the proposal.
Kellie proposed on Christmas Eve 2015. She had planned a romantic picnic in the botanic gardens with her best friend hiding as the photographer. However, the Gold Coast weather had other ideas and rained non stop all day. So, Kellie packed up the picnic in the back of our Jeep, drove us to Burleigh Hedland lookout, and surprised me with the most beautiful proposal overlooking the beach. Of course, I said YES!
Over the next few years, we planned our perfect day. Everything was booked, paid for, and ready to go. Only for life to throw us a little curveball, Kellie was offered a promotion with work, which saw us relocate from Central Queensland to Canberra. Our big day was put on hold while we moved, started new jobs, and began our new life in Canberra.
On Christmas Eve 2019, Kellie surprised me once again. I arrived at the location to find her standing in a forest, surrounded by fairy lights, music playing, and wine chilling. She explained that as we have both changed so much over the last few years and become completely different people to when she first proposed, she wanted to ask me again and give me the proposal she had initially planned. Of course, I said yes! We then danced in the forest to music while the sunset – it was just perfect!
Talk us through the decision to elope.
After postponing our wedding for the second time, we decided to take a holiday back to Queensland to visit our friends and family. A few weeks before leaving, Kellie suggested we get married while there. I responded with, ‘We can’t do that, can we?!’. We reached out to our vendors, and they were all available on the same day. We didn’t want to finish the year without becoming Mrs & Mrs, and with how hard 2020 has been, we wanted to end on a high.
Tell us about telling your loved ones that you’re now married.
We had ten guests at our ceremony, consisting of family and friends. We asked our photographers for a sneaky photo to announce to everyone on Facebook, and they sent through 98 images, which we had to go through to pick just 1!
Our friends and family have always been incredibly supportive of us and our relationship. They all understood how hard it was for us to postpone our day, not just once but twice. Everyone was thrilled for us and are so happy we are finally ‘The Smiths.’
Talk us through the actual elopement.
We organized everything from interstate, which was quite stressful, and keeping it a secret. And, We both nearly let it slip numerous times but managed to keep it on the down-low until we announced it.
We spent the morning getting ready together and excitedly saying, ‘we’re getting married today!’. Kellie’s dad picked us up from our accommodation, drove us to our ceremony, and walked us both down the aisle holding hands. We had ten guests consisting of family and friends. With Vanessa’s best friend watching on via Facetime as he was in Melbourne and couldn’t attend due to Covid. Shelby created a beautiful personalized ceremony that had everyone laughing the entire time. We exchanged vows through tears and laughter by the beach in the afternoon sun.
After the ceremony, we went off alone to have photos on the Woody Point Jetty before meeting our friends and family at The Belvedere Hotel to celebrate with a few quiet drinks and dinner over sunset.
Photography by Bent Film Co