Charlotte + Al's DIY Wedding - Byron Bay Surf Club

April 4, 2019

Al and Charlotte - Byron Bay Surf Club March 2019. All photos by Claire Sewell

Al and Charlotte were married at the Byron Bay Surf Club in March. It rained in the days leading up to the event and Al arrived underneath a huge golf umbrella, but the rain stopped just before the bride, her best friend (who flew in from London for the lovefest!), two sons, and dog arrived. Charlotte swooned and twirled down the aisle to Lou Reed’s, A Perfect Day played by DJ Beaver, and the whole wedding party cheered, clapped and wolf-whistled her along – it was sensational.

That is until their dog broke free from the lead and bolted down onto Byron Bay Main Beach with both Al and Charlotte’s young boys chasing after her. We did need to hold the ceremony until the dog and children were retrieved, but that just added to the gloriousness of the moment!

When I first met with Al and Charlotte, it was made obvious to me just how much they complimented and balanced one another out.

Although when we were chatting about the ceremony, Al wanted something very simple and Charlotte wanted a full-blown royal wedding! So, we did need to find a happy medium. As a lifetime member of the Byron Bay Surf Club, Al was able to hire the space and together they created a wonderful DIY wedding event!

Charlotte truly believed serendipity was at play when she met Al; she’d just the caught the bouquet at a friend’s wedding the night before they met, and a friend had told her numerous times, she really needed to meet this guy she knew.

Charlotte arrives
Any objection?

As fate would have it, they both ended up at a great party in Byron Bay, and they got chatting. But Charlotte couldn’t stick around, she had tickets to a Ben Lee concert at The Northern and so she left Al at the party. Now, even though Al didn’t like Ben Lee, he knew he had to follow this woman! But the concert was sold out, and so he pulled in a favour from one of his solid Byron Bay connections and was able to enter through the stage door.

When Al found Charlotte in the crowd, she said, “I didn’t think you liked Ben Lee”, and he replied, “I’m not here to see Ben Lee”. It was at that moment she thought “Oh this is potential”.

And so, you could say – in the famous lyrics of Ben Lee, that Al Gambled Everything for Love that night. And now 14 years later, two beautiful boys, Lawson and Magnus, we can safely say the bet has definitely paid off.

Charlotte really wanted all the traditional bits and so we added in a few sentences asking whether there was anybody in the crowd who objected to this union. In the past, this was a question that was asked in case someone was marrying whilst still being in a relationship, to avoid bigamy, but these days we get all this tied away in our initial meetings with the couple and covered off with the Declaration of No Impediment to Marriage.

In the past, if someone did object, the wedding ceremony would have been stopped and the union wouldn’t have been able to happen on that day, or until the objection was investigated. Luckily there wasn’t a sound when the question was asked, and so we were able to carry on seamlessly and I made them, Mr and Mrs.

It was a lovely moment with laughs, happy tears and many a heckle, mainly from the bride and, the entire wedding party – it was a load of fun!

The rain subsided for the photos and family shots, and I left them sipping champagne served by Eat Drink Catering and swaying to the beats being laid down by DJ Beaver, and from all accounts, everyone partied hard, well into the night.

With this ring...
I'm your husband, you're my wife, now let's party!
The happiest celebrant in Byron Bay!

Charlotte + Al's DIY Wedding - Byron Bay Surf Club

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