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Cake design artist and confectioner, Froggy Ko, is the founder of What Froggy Bakes. He’s also an openly gay man. My husband Clint and I chose Froggy for our own wedding and we couldn’t have been happier with what he produced. When we told him we didn’t want a traditional wedding cake, he let his creative juices flow and produced some bite-sized cakes that were more ‘us’ – and they were amazing! Although he originally graduated as a civil engineer, Froggy ultimately followed his passion, falling headlong into the art of cake decorating, back in 2013. Froggy is a self-taught baker and has continued his education through on-the-job training apprenticeships at two of Melbourne’s iconic cake and culinary businesses. Taking his baking curiosity to the next level, he decided to combine his engineering knowledge into his cake design by building structures – cakes – that defy gravity, making the impossible, possible. His attention to detail and perfection continue to create unique custom cake designs and confectionery.
Preparing for a wedding can be an exciting, and stressful experience for many – sometimes tensions can run higher than usual leading up to that special day. Conflict, self-exploration, self-doubt – seeking counselling at any stage of the process can be a powerful way of starting a new life together with a solid foundation of communication, respect, trust and love. As private practice owner of Lee Wong Counselling, Lee Wong is a highly qualified and experienced registered counsellor. His main expertise and passions lie within the realms of Intersectionality and Self-Identity. This includes: LGBTQIA+, multicultural, spiritual, stage-of-life and other parts of our identities, experiences, upbringings, beliefs or perspectives that have formed parts of our identities. With his own lived experience within LGBTQIA+, cultural and spiritual fields, Lee has extensive experience supporting clients through the concepts of conflict management; self-growth, self-actualisation and self-identity and how it impacts their past, present and future.
Bent Couch Counselling, a queer small business, was proudly opened in October 2022 by Shaun Williams. It provides a welcoming, safe, and therapeutic environment for the mental health of LGBTQIA+ community specialising in anyone who identifies as male. Bent Couch Counselling provides 1-on-1 online counselling, mind coaching, group therapy and in-person Counselling in Kew, Victoria. Shaun is qualified and registered with the Australian Counselling Association and has been in active in the health industry for over 18 years. Having ‘come out’ later in life, Shaun understands many of the issues gay men may face including anxiety, depression, loneliness, sexual concerns and relationship challenges along with the heightening of these issues if you identify as a male within the LGBTQIA+ community. Shaun can help you address these and other personal difficulties with empathy, understanding and professionalism. At Bent Couch Counselling, Shaun’s aim is to assist you to feel supported, connected and respected.
Hola there! I’m Maxi Xie, affectionately known as Mango Tango Banana, and I’m a relationship counsellor and sex therapist. I’m here to infuse you and your partner’s journey with deeper love, heightened passion, and profound understanding. I’m bilingual and fluent in both Mandarin and English. I’m proudly kink and fetish-friendly, as well as poly-friendly, and aim to create a judgment-free space for you and/or your partner to explore desires, pleasure and much more. Also, I’m a strong advocate for the multicultural LGBTQIA + community. With my background in adult shop work, I bring expertise in sex toys to the table, making me your go-to sex toy connoisseur! I always aim to bring a playful yet consistently professional approach to our sessions. My genuine passion lies in guiding and uplifting those in multicultural relationships, helping them navigate the beautiful tapestry of love. And for those embarking on the journey of marriage, I offer pre-marital counselling to fortify your bond and ease any anxieties about the future.
e: firstname.lastname@example.org | t: +61 3 94781810 | 03 94781810
As a passionate member of the LGBTQIA + community, Ashley Dell’Oro is all about creating a safe and affirming space for everyone under the rainbow. With a heart as colourful as the Pride flag, she’s here to support you, whoever you are and whoever you love. It is not just about being LGBTQIA+; Ashley brings a unique perspective to her work. She’s been through her own ups and downs, so she understands what it’s like to navigate life’s twists and turns. Her lived experience gives her an extra layer of empathy and relatability that you’ll instantly connect with. When she’s not lending a listening ear and a helping hand, Ashley is nurturing her incredible garden and indoor jungle. Seriously, you’ve never seen so many thriving houseplants in one place! She finds peace and inspiration in nature, and she’s got some great plant care tips to share if you’re interested. Helping people is not just a job for Ashley, it’s her calling. Whether you’re facing anxiety, depression, or simply seeking some guidance in life, she’s here to walk with you on your journey. So, if you’re looking for a warm, understanding, and LGBTQIA+ affirming mental health counsellor who’ll welcome you with open arms, Ashley is your person. Reach out and take that first step towards a happier, healthier you. Together, you and Ashley can bloom and thrive!
e: email@example.com | t: +61 3 94781810 | 03 94781810
I really like the way Dikala (Dee) from The Music and Entertainment Company works her crowd. She knows a vast array of music and plays the room, setting the vibe for the entire night’s celebration. She is joined by her twin sister – Mereoni Vuki. Together they make up a powerhouse business duo, Dee brings her years of professional industry experience as a musician, DJ, & entertainer coupled with a natural ability to build solid working relationships with clients.
Entertainer – singer
The first thing you notice when you meet Aimee is her welcoming grin that grows into an infectious smile. She’s got an amazing voice, an incredibly versatile range that helps create a party vibe that meets whatever requirements you have. It’s easy to see why everyone loves her and why she’s so heavily booked. Aimee is so much fun, has so much talent – oh, and did I mention she takes requests?
One of the services we members of the LGBTIQ community think we’ll never need is family law. But lots of us in the LGBTIQ community have been married before we came out; others are considering starting a family, and others still are thinking about whether or not they need to consider setting up a ‘pre nup’ before they marry. Other issues that can affect us are divorce from a previous relationship, property settlement and arrangements for children. Jane Libbis and her colleagues at Umbrella Family Law specialise in helping couples begin their married life on the right foot, legally. For example, unshackling previous relationships, financial settlements, ‘pre-nups’, arrangements for children, considerations for future children, and wills. Jane has also completed my LGBTIQ+ Inclusion Training. If you think it’d be useful, get in touch with her.
Accredited family law specialist, John Spender, is a partner of the top tier Melbourne family law firm, Kennedy Partners Lawyers. He is also an openly gay man. He has a passion for family law, working with people, and assisting former couples in achieving a resolution of their disputes, or litigating these in Court, if need be. Some special aspects to his practice include assisting couples and the would be married couples with financial agreements designed to specify an asset
division on separation and assisting couples whose family law problems cross international boundaries. Having experience dating back to 1993, his expertise is such that he was invited by Deakin University to teach family law on a sessional basis in 2021, has done so since, and is regularly invited to present in continuing legal education to his peers. His attention to detail and empathy and patience with clients make him a popular choice for those with relationship difficulties.
I’ve referred numerous couples who want flowers for their wedding, to The Flower Merchant, located in Moonee Ponds. The staff there are renowned for their easy-going, can-do attitude, and my couples have never been disappointed. Whether you’re after a simple bouquet or buttonholes for lapels or something more complex such as table arrangements, The Flower Merchant will listen to precisely what you’re after and work within your budget. And, if you ever want a bouquet in rainbow colours, for example, just for that simple but stunning non-verbal statement, consider it done! Give them a call and mention my name.
When a lesbian couple asked me to marry them at a Yarra Valley winery, and to accompany them on a helicopter to and from their wedding, I had no option but to say, ‘I do!’. John the helicopter pilot is the guy who made it happen. When other Yarra Valley venues demanded a minimum number of wedding guests, and the couple only wanted themselves, their witnesses and me at their marriage ceremony, followed by lunch at a winery, it was John who arranged it all with the amazing De Bortoli Winery. What an experience! John is one of those wedding suppliers who knows how to help couples get the wedding of their dreams without it costing an arm and a leg and without them needing to buy into the traditional ‘minimum spends’. I loved working with him. Highly recommended!
Alejandrina De La Rosa (also known as Ally) is an amazingly talented hair and make-up artist with more than 20 years’ experience. She’s also a proud member of the LGBTIQ+ community. Ally describes herself as a self-taught Mexican artist. Her line of work extends across weddings, drag shows, film, tv and body painting shoots. Her art is also seen across social media and international magazines. Ally is a true artist who is great at taking direction from her clients – and will happily follow your vision and ideas. She will also go out of her way helping you in anything else you might need. If you want to do something different leading up to your wedding, why not engage Ally to paint you and your partner in body art? Clint and I used Ally for our ‘TV-style’ makeup on our wedding day. She’s fabulous to work with!
Nick Hansen is a Registered Migration Agent and founded Hansen Migration in February 2016. Nick’s family migrated to Australia from Germany after World War II and growing up in a migrant family inspired Nick to want to help others experience the wonders of Australia. After working in retail and corporate travel for more than a decade, Nick changed careers and, in 2015, graduated from Victoria University with a Graduate Certificate in Australia Migration Law and Practice. Together with his partner Kate, Nick specialises in gay immigration, partner visas, parent visas and child visas. Their attention to detail and their client-focus have earned them many positive reviews and a very high visa application success rate of 99.5%. Nick has also completed The Equality Network’s LGBTIQ+ Inclusion Training.
I’ve worked with lots of photo booth companies and, in my opinion, Lavish Photo Booths is up there with the very best. They’ve been part of celebrations for almost a decade now and are Melbourne’s Award-Winning Premium Photo Booth Company. They’ve got thousands of events under their belt and have provided their services to wedding couples in venues ranging from wineries in the Yarra Valley to hotels in the heart of the CBD. Over the years, they’ve sourced the best photo booths available on the planet and brought them to Australia! That’s what has set them apart. Highly recommended! Give Willy a call and mention my name!
Numerous times now, I’ve worked with Laura Alicia, a passionate wedding photographer with a love for capturing the beauty and emotion of one of life’s most cherished moments for LGBTIQ+ couples. I love watching her use her camera as her creative tool, as she embarks on a journey to document the love, joy, and romance that fill the air on the wedding day of couples who are, at first, nervous, as they speak some legal words that will change their lives. She’s a good communicator and takes the time to build a genuine connection with couples, which relaxes them quickly. I’ve seen her strive to capture every candid smile, every stolen glance, and every heartfelt embrace. By blending a mix of candid shots and carefully composed portraits, she gets to tell the unique story of queer people’s love. Collaboration is at the heart of Laura’s approach. Laura is willing to work with couples according to their budget and wishes – so, if you’re not after a massive wedding event but would prefer to have the services of a wedding photographer for a short time, reach out and say hello.
m: 0450 508 268 | e: firstname.lastname@example.org | w: www.fotografa.com.au
I’ve worked with Erik Westein at lots of LGBTIQ+ weddings and have been amazed by the quality of his photography, his sound and his films. His quiet, friendly, relaxed style makes him stand out as a true professional who has his clients firmly in sight. I continue to be astounded by how he instantly makes all sorts of couples feel like a million dollars. His business combines not only videography and photography but also professional live streaming. I love watching Erik at work – he connects with people in ways that are rare for wedding professionals.
I love the vision and the values of this place – All Things Equal. Those three little words sum it up pretty simply, really. All Things Equal, situated in suburban Balaclava, is dedicated to helping people with disability gain skills that enable them to work. Their staff understand diversity and the importance of giving people opportunity.
I conducted a social enterprise wedding at this lovely café. The couple getting married have dedicated their lives to help improve the lives of people around the globe. And so, they focused their wedding on communities and people whose rights are violated, including LGBTIQ+ people. Every one of the wedding suppliers supports a different social cause: homelessness, trans men, asylum seekers, Ukrainian communities, people with a disability and First Nations communities. For couples who may have similar values, I’d urge you to give this lovely café a go. The vibe at All Things Equal is relaxed and professional. The catering I experienced was mouth-wateringly good – and beyond delicious!
Free to Feed is one of those venues that you just want to keep going back to. It’s a not-for-profit social enterprise that was established in 2015. Since then, its focus has been on empowering people seeking asylum and refugees to overcome barriers to social and economic inclusion in Australia. Not only do they offer training and employment and other support to some of the most vulnerable people in Melbourne, but they also offer shared food experiences.
Free to Feed encourages inclusion and diversity, by inviting people to explore the rich cuisines and cultures of newly arrived people form places such as Iran and Somalia. I conducted one of my most memorable weddings there, and the catering offered by Free to Feed was incredible. Couples who wish to put something back into the community as part of their wedding planning should certainly check them out.
Address: 205-211 Queens Parade Fitzroy North | w: www.freetofeed.org.au
When I first stepped into the wonderful space that is Heide, to conduct a wedding, I was struck by the uniqueness of the spaces available. Our wedding was underneath a gorgeous, old tree outside the main building that provided generous shade on a warm summer’s day. But my eyes and other senses were immediately drawn to the immense vegetable garden whose produce is used all year round for their catering efforts. As a vegetable gardener, I drooled with envy at the variety and productivity in that gorgeous garden! The staff were well-trained and highly professional, and made sure the various needs of wedding guests were met without hesitation. If you’re looking for a wedding venue that’s a little out of the ordinary, this place has got to be on your list!
When a trans man wanted to marry his now-husband at a niche local venue that was embracing of them and their love, right at the top of their list was Nintingbool Vineyard and Winery, a 20 minute drive from Ballarat. Nintingbool provides a natural, intimate setting for weddings, and guests are surrounded by a massively diverse and healthy ecosystem of plants / trees and birds / animals. The owners of the vineyard, Peter and Jill, have put an enormous effort into ensuring that anyone who comes to the Vineyard and Winery leaves with lovely memories that linger long after they have left, just like a well-aged wine. And the food? Delicious! Try it out.
As soon as you enter Siglo Bar, via the circular staircase, you know you’re in for something special. Siglo Bar is one of Melbourne’s hidden gems. It’s striking. It’s bold. And it’s intimate. You look out across Spring Street to stunning views of the floodlit columned façade of Parliament, the magnificent spire of St Patrick’s Cathedral and the muralled brickwork and domes of the Princess Theatre. You can either stand and enjoy a drink, mesmerised by those views, or you can be seated in Parisian wicker chairs & wooden garden furniture and be waited on. It’s one of Melbourne’s less-known venues for weddings – and will pique the interest of those couples looking for something a little different with more than a little bit of class.
The best thing about Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens at Daylesford is the number of options you can choose from, not only to have your ceremony but also to grab some magical photos before and afterwards. There are some very well-tended garden beds full of colour, and there are some magnificent very old native Australian trees that are full of shade on warm days. In between, there are many nooks where you can get some fabulous photos taken and just enjoy some private moments together, with or away from your guests. Don’t forget to check if you need a permit to get married if you choose Wombat Hill Botanic Gardens as your location.