Want to elope? Dope. This mini-festival of love might just be what you need—and this luxe elopement experience promises the perfect event for lovers who are looking for something a little less tradish.
Taking wedding planning to the next level without removing any of the fun, Canberra-based business Dope Elope is offering a new small wedding experience for those who want to keep their event intimate without compromising on detail, bringing together local wedding legends and vendors to create the ultimate mini-festival of love.
The concept: an all-inclusive venue will be created for a handful of couples to use as both a ceremony and reception location alongside a no-expenses-spared package, across one weekend. It’s all the luxe, without the fuss. From flowers to cake, photographers, videographers, a celebrant, canapés and drinks, everything will be taken care of. All you have to do is show up on the day with your significant other and eight guests.
Offering bookings across Thursday 7 and Friday 8 September (and themed ‘Springtime Splendour’), the awe-inspiring, gasp-inducing, this no-expense-spared pop-up wedding package was created by celebrant Sarah Marie Tulley, who says Dope Elope can be easily described in three words: “For extraordinary lovers.”
“This concept has been bubbling away over the past year,” she says. “I was inspired to take the plunge after a fellow celebrant and photographer duo up north bought a venue and turned it into a hitching house!”
“In the absence of being able to do that, the idea of bringing together a different group of vendors, including hosting it at different venues, and having different ‘themes’ for each edition, was born.”
Helping to redefine what everyone’s special day looks like and bringing some creativity to the concept of elopement, the first-ever session of Dope Elope will see 15 local vendors come together to create special weddings for lovers that promise a vibe that’s just as fun as the concept—think: zesty brights, pops of colour and kaleidoscopic accents.
And with everything from pre-wedding hair and makeup services to post-wedding tattoos included in the experience (yep, really), the epic line-up of vendors includes Sarah Marie Celebrancy herself, WILUNA Flower Studio and Concept Space, Bel Combridge Photography, The Lazy Grazer, Black Cat Cocktails, My Sweet Lady, MCKY, Corinna and Dylan Photography, Kate Lily Dressing Hair, Tara Florence Artistry, The Tale of Two and more.
The only thing you’ll have to do is decide what to wear on the day—and where you want the party to kick on afterward.
“I see Dope Elope being perfect for those fun-loving, ‘dope’ couples who have been wanting to take the plunge but haven’t quite got around to it, or for those who don’t want the stress of planning a wedding—or the pressure of having to invite their third cousin they’ve never met,” says Sarah Marie.
“This is not just an elopement. It is a planned, executed, small wedding, where no detail will be spared. All the Insta-worthy trimmings are included, and we have the most amazing team documenting every moment so you can re-live the experience for decades to come.”
Hoping to break some of the misconceptions around eloping—like, that people only elope because they can’t afford weddings—Sarah Marie says part of what makes this event so special is it’s been specifically designed for couples who want to have a meaningful, intimate (and totally rad) experience with vendors that are often hard to book all at once.
“What it means to ‘elope’ has shifted over the last few decades, and even more so after the pandemic. It used to be about running away without your parent’s permission. Now it’s about hosting smaller scale shindigs to focus on what’s important—two people making a forever kind of commitment to each other,” she says.
“COVID has taught people to adapt and think outside the box about what a wedding looks like and when and where they can be held. It has also empowered couples to challenge tradition and hold smaller weddings without fear of judgment.”
Taking care of everything (including a timeline of what to do, and when) literally all you need to do is book a date and time slot, ask up to eight people to come along on the day, and then get hitched in September in a bright, bold, and heart-warming ceremony you (and Sarah Marie) won’t forget.
“I am so excited to see the faces of couples when they walk into the space and absorb what’s in front of them—and I’m excited for my own reaction! I will probably shed a tear or two hitching my first couple knowing we helped them achieve this,” says Sarah Marie.
“I can’t wait to meet and get to know the lucky couples who choose Dope Elope and be part of their love high on the day—there’s nothing quite like it!’
Dare to dope this spring? With limited spots available, you’ll need to get in quick for this luxe elopement experience.
What: Dope Elope Springtime Splendour
When: Thursday 7 and Friday 8 September
Where: WILUNA Concept Space, Unit 1A/3 Wiluna Street, Fyshwick
Feature image credit: Corinna + Dylan.