The wedding of Pia Muehlenbeck and Kane Vato was a social media sensation, so much so, that it is still being talked about years later. Dried florals paired with light, muted and earthy tones created a picture-perfect day in Byron.
We caught up with the owner of Slinkii to talk all things about her dreamy Byron wedding. Muehlenbeck even shares her top tips for brides to be.
Tell us a little about the day….
“It’s without a doubt the best day of my entire life. I’ve never had a day where all of my most loved family and friends were in the one place all celebrating together. Our wedding was a beautiful rustic garden party at the Fig Tree in Byron Bay. We wanted our wedding to feel like a holiday without necessarily choosing an overseas destination.
Byron Bay is one of our favourite spots in the world. The vibe there is so relaxed and natural, that I immediately sink into a tranquil holiday feeling when I’m there.
Two days before the wedding, as everyone started to flock to town, we hosted a ‘welcome drinks’ afternoon at the Mez Club so guests who may not have met each other beforehand all had an opportunity to meet and it made the wedding day feel like a bunch of close friends getting together. We wanted to keep the day quite intimate so we invited exactly 100 guests. We arranged big red double-decker busses to collect all the guests, from a meeting spot so they could all arrive at the same time, champagne in hand, ready for our garden party.
The venue was absolutely spectacular. I’ve never seen anything look so magical. We worked with Sihanie from Byron Bay Weddings to pull everything together and they made all my styling dreams come true. I arrived to a sea of guests, all wearing neutral coloured tones fitting in perfectly with the natural surroundings under the shade of the huge Fig Tree. We kept our ceremony very raw and light-hearted.
Our celebrant, Peter Bray, is actually a good friend of ours and brought a hilarious sense of humour to the entire wedding. We even asked everyone for a ’selfie’ at to finish off the ceremony!
The afternoon was filled with signature cocktails, a roaming magician and beautiful breakout spots under the grapevines before we sat down for our dinner under the stars. We custom built a wooden marquee to hang lights and dried florals because I wanted us to dine out in the open but still feel cozy and comfortable.
I also asked our cake maker, Marina Machado, to make 100 cookies with each guest’s name and table number written on the cookie to help people find their seats. I changed into my second Pallas Couture dress for the evening to make my dancing the night away a little more manageable and Kane and I sat amongst our guests rather than a bridal table.
After dinner I brought out the espresso martinis and we all partied the night away!”
What was the inspiration behind your wedding?
“I wanted the day to feel very chic and stylish but also natural and relaxed. The Byron Bay outdoor setting made me immediately feel like neutral tones, dried florals, and rustic wooden details would enhance the space without overpowering it.”
What was your favourite moment from the day?
“Oh my goodness, I have so many favourite moments. Probably when Kane and I snuck to the side of the dinner to have a private little moment to quickly try and practice our dance, and we still ended if stuffing it up! Haha!”
If you could do it all over again, is there anything you would change?
“There is absolutely nothing I would change. I honestly don’t know how, but the day was absolutely perfect in my eyes.”
What advice do you have for future couples planning their special day?
“I think it’s important to plan a wedding that feels natural to who you are. I see a lot of couples feel under pressure to make something so glitzy and glamorous and it might not feel totally authentic.
Don’t forget, this is just a day for all the people you love to come together and celebrate the love you and your partner have. So make it a day that really feels true to you. Keep it fun, make sure you take time to actually enjoy it, and don’t sweat the small things.”