Imagine being a Wedding Photography AND Bride, and having to postpone your Wedding. Merve is here to tell her story on how her big day eventuated in February 2022 celebrating a fusion of cultures and traditions in a rustic gathering with their closest.
Mervé shares all the details of her tender romance with Lucas, from first meeting to sweet proposal and wedding celebrations.
How did you two meet? Tell us your proposal story if you like;
We met precisely six years ago at the Portsea Hotel on Australia Day weekend and coincidently booked our Wedding the same weekend six years later. Weird.
We never exchanged numbers, and we didn’t know much about each other, but I bumped into him the following week at a club. We never had intentions of being together at the time and jokingly even said, “don’t fall in love with each other” and here we are. Lucas and I couldn’t have fallen any harder.
Like everyone else, we had dreams of travelling to Europe in 2019. It was my first year booking international weddings as a wedding photographer, and both of us are super business savvy people who put our hearts and souls into what we love doing most. This was the perfect excuse to make a holiday out of it. I had one in Turkey, Italy, New York, and Bali.
Lucas had plans to propose in Notting Hill as it is one of my favourite movies, but we didn’t have a lot of travel options due to the pandemic. We’re not overly romantic people. Once we realised that we weren’t getting out of lockdown any time soon, he proposed in our kitchen while I was in my robe when we had 8:00 pm curfews.
I had just done my nails at the time, and jokingly I was recording and saying to him, “I’m ready for that ring”, and at the time, he told me, “oh are you recording? Keep recording,” and next thing I knew was he was pulling out a ring, and I was yelling “Oh MY GOD, ARE YOU SERIOUS. NO WAY!”
Technically I still haven’t said yes to his proposal; I just took the ring and ran for my life.
2. What was the best moment of your Wedding (funniest, most heart-warming, and most memorable)?
The most memorable moment of our Wedding was our first look. It was honestly the most heart-warming, most romantic, and emotional thing I have ever experienced. Marrying Lucas brought out a new love language between us I never knew existed. We’re generally full of banter, lots of business meetings over dinners and simply like best mates.
Those who know us well know we rarely ever get overly ‘lovey dovey’; this was different for both of us. Although we didn’t go to Notting Hill, we played “She by Elvis Costello” during our first look, and I bawled my eyes out. Usually, I see grooms reacting in such a way, but seeing Lucas as a groom from both perspectives of a creative and a bride was the most incredible thing I have ever felt. It was that very moment where I said to myself, “he is the most handsome groom I have ever seen; I can’t wait to photograph him”.
I wanted to do a first look as seeing each other for the first time was essential to keep this moment sacred. This might sound contradicting, but the moment was particularly important for me to feel real emotions. I was petrified of seeing him for the first time in front of our family and friends. I wanted us to enjoy an intimate moment, just the two of us, with hopes that I would be a little less nervous during our ceremony.
The whole time during our first look, I bawled my eyes out. It was an unexplainable feeling. I think seeing him for the first time, seeing myself on the other end as a bride, seeing our two culturally and religiously different families come together to celebrate us was incredibly emotional. I couldn’t stop crying from happiness, and we were both in a romance bubble.
3. What do you feel was the most unique part of your wedding?
We were bringing two different cultures together. Lucas comes from a strong Italian family, and I come from a Turkish family. For both of us, family is incredibly important, and we wanted to make sure that both cultures were represented throughout our day and not overkilling it as well. We entered with traditional Turkish drums, but we had a twist by playing Bella Ciao.
4. Looking back, what’s one thing you’d change about your wedding (could be to do with planning, the actual day, etc.)?
Honestly, absolutely nothing. It was the most magical day of our lives, and when planning, I was pretty meticulous about every aspect. I had a particular vision for the day, and that was to keep it relatively simple, ethereal, and elegant. The only thing I think we could have incorporated more was to add more cultural music for our families.
We thought it might be overkill when we were planning before our wedding day, but our guests were craving more cultural music from us, which we wish we had done more of. They loved the two cultural customs we had coming together for our entrance with the drums.
5. Any advice you would give to future Brides planning their Wedding in managing Covid?
Don’t overthink what could go wrong. Focus on the positives, and whatever is meant to happen will happen. Of course, in saying that, plan for exactly what you envision for your wedding day. We didn’t hold back on booking the suppliers we wanted, and it was everything we could have asked for on our special day.
Wedding Gown – Coral Confortti
Reception dress – Cult Gaia
Bridal Shoes – Aquazzura
Reception shoes – Yves Saint Laurent
Earrings – Dior
Bridesmaids – Shona joy
Florist – Sassafras
Stationary and signage – Ivory & Noir
Champagne tower – The Event Merchant
Ceremony vocals – Entertainment Collective
DJ – Rutherford entertainment
Turkish Entertainment – Zaffet Royale
Live Entertainment – Rutherford entertainment (saxophone and percussion)
MC – Serge Romano
Cake – Party with grazer
Guest Favours: Made by the Bride
Venue – Stones of the Yarra valley
Makeup – Steph piazza
Hair – Hair by Neveen
Photography – Mervé Togan team
Videography – Tango Films