Alana and Max’s surprise backyard wedding

February 27, 2021

Alana and Max’s surprise wedding

Alana and Max caught all their friends and family by turning their backyard engagement party into a surprise wedding. They made their love official in the garden of their East Victoria Park home that they had recently bought surrounded by their nearest and dearest.

A day to remember

DIY was a big part of Alana and Max’s day. They hosted all their guest and their new home and got help from some friends and family to decorate the place and to put together the biggest grazing platter. They also had on board incredible woodfired pizza, delicious gelato, and of course, the best cocktails by Caravan and Tonic. Amazingly, their 150 guests all fit in their backyard and everyone was having the time of their life pre-announcement as well as during the cocktail-style reception.

From backyard engagement party to surprise wedding

I started the day ‘undercover’ as one of Alana’s friends just taking a few photos here and there as a favor. Moments before the ceremony, Maggie, their celebrant, announced the surprise to the crowd and revealed that I was actually their wedding photographer. Witnessing the guests’ reactions to the announcement was one of my favorite parts of the wedding.

Alana quickly ducked into her bedroom and got changed into her wedding dress with the help of her bridesmaids. The excitement was palpable, not only inside the room with the girls but outside in the backyard as well as Max and the guests were waiting for the ceremony to start. And what a ceremony! Friends and family were moving from tears to laughter in no time.

The rest of the day included a beautiful stroll around the bushlands of Victoria Park to capture photos of Alana and Max and their wedding party, heartfelt speeches, and a killer dancefloor (who needs a DJ when your Spotify playlist is this good?!)

A story for the grandkids!


Alana’s dress: Made With Love via StillWhite
Makeup: Emma Louise Makeup
Flowers: Bloomin Boxes
Celebrant: Maggie Panaia
Drinks: Caravan & Tonic
Food: Base WF Pizza
Ice-cream cart: That Little Gelato Cart

View more weddings galleries here and elopements here.