weddings

Olivia Molly Rogers on how she planned the weekend's most watched wedding on Instagram.

Olivia Molly Rogers has been wowing everyone with her very beautiful wedding photos.

The former Miss Universe Australia who is also a mental health advocate, author and speech pathologist, married Justin McKeone on the weekend, surrounded by loved ones.

And the wedding has captivated people on Instagram, thanks to the stunning venue, sentimental photos and those amazing two dresses. 

But of course like any wedding event, the planning going on behind the scenes came with its own set of challenges.

Olivia Rogers and Justin McKeone's first dance, captured by I Do Cinema. Post continues below.


Video via I Do Cinema.

Since being introduced to one another by a mutual acquaintance four years ago, Olivia and Justin have gone from strength to strength.

"It may sound cringe to say, but I felt like he was my person pretty much straight away. He liked me for me and the bond was genuine and easy. Plus, we made each other laugh, so that was a bonus," Olivia said.

In 2019 while the pair were travelling across Europe, Justin proposed to Olivia. 

Interestingly, he didn't pick the classic city of love to get down on one knee. Instead, he chose the Amalfi Coast, somewhere neither of them had been before. 

"We would pass those beautiful places like Paris and nothing happened. My friends seemed to be convinced he was going to propose. I thought to myself, if he hasn't done it in one of the most romantic places in the world, then it's probably not going to happen."

So when it finally did happen, Olivia was shocked. 

"It was amazing. He said he picked Positano because he thought that Paris would have been cliché. Plus, it was a place neither of us had been, so a perfect spot to make new memories together."

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But of course 2020 had something in store for Olivia and Justin - just like it had for thousands of couples wanting to say 'I do' across the globe: A pandemic.

In what is sadly not a unique situation, Olivia and Justin had to postpone their wedding two times before all things went ahead on the third go.

"We were lucky to postpone a bit in advance compared to other people who only had a week's notice - that would have been just awful. It was definitely a really disappointing time, I just felt like it was never gonna happen. Seeing some couples get lucky and have their weddings in between the periods of lockdown, I was both really happy for them but also wishing that could have been us," Olivia said to Mamamia. 

Then when the third date rolled around and things were looking optimistic, Olivia says she still couldn't bring herself to be completely attached.

"It was a constant rollercoaster of emotions. I didn't let myself get excited about it for so long. Because I didn't want to let myself get too attached to things or too excited just in case it didn't happen. It was a coping mechanism."

But on February 5, 2022, the big day finally came. 

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As for wedding planning, Olivia says she took control in terms of the styling and Justin handled the budget: "He makes a very good spreadsheet!" 

Pinterest and Instagram served points of inspiration, and before COVID entered the picture, Olivia said she thoroughly enjoyed the planning process and choosing the right 'vibe' for them.

Listen to Mamamia's wedding podcast Hitched: You're engaged! Now what? Post continues after audio.


When it came to the guest list, the pandemic of course made its mark.

"We ended up with 140 people, which felt like a really good amount. But for Justin given he's from Perth, his best mates, three of his groomsmen - including his brother - couldn't come because of WA border restrictions. He was absolutely devastated," Olivia shared. 

As someone who has been open about their struggles with anxiety, Olivia was super stressed in the lead up to the day, amid rising COVID numbers. 

"I tried to remember that I didn't have control in the situation and I really just tried to prepare myself for the worst, which sounds very doomsday. But the worst-case scenario was the Perth loved ones not being able to come, and that ended up happening. It wasn't until the day itself I breathed a sigh of relief. I realised, I had done literally everything I could do, so now it's time to just enjoy it."

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In a bid to ensure the Perth attendees felt like they could be a part of the wedding, Olivia managed to organise a live stream.

"This lovely guy from Melbourne came to the venue with his live streaming equipment and had three cameras set up, so everyone who watched it could see the different angles. Those watching said they felt like they were with us, and those in Perth all got together and had a long lunch after watching our ceremony remotely."

Olivia continued: "During the ceremony the celebrant said: 'Justin, I just want you to turn and look at the screen' and the three groomsmen stranded in Perth were standing there on the live stream in their suits. Justin got a bit emotional, and it was really special."

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As for the showstopper: Olivia Molly Roger's wedding dresses.  

The ceremony dress was a custom Marquise Bridal v-neck style, made of stunning floral lace, long sleeves and a sizeable train. 

"I felt amazing in that dress. I really wanted something classic, knowing that I'll look back on it in 50 years and still love the style. It's very Grace Kelly. I had this dress vision in my mind two and a half years ago when we got engaged, and I never got sick of the idea. So I thought that's probably a good sign!"

The reception/party dress was a bit of fun but also a needed change, given the first dress would be impossible to dance in. So OGLIA-LORO Couture designed this one-shoulder high leg split number, draped in crystals and lace. As for why she went for two dresses, Olivia's response: "Why not!"

"After going through the s**t with planning, I wanted to have fun, I mean it's the one day in my life where I'm going to wear something like that, so might as well go for it," she said.

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When it came to designing the dresses for the bridal party - which consisted of Olivia's little sister, three friends from school, a cousin and a close friend - Olivia wanted to make sure each girl felt comfortable in what they were wearing. 

The spotted tulle fabric was the only thing Olivia was set on.

"My bridal party aren't in the public eye like I am, so I was really aware they might not be as comfortable as me with so many photos being taken and then being posted all over the Internet. So I wanted each of them to feel a million dollars, and the custom-made dresses were designed by Erika Georg. Each of the ladies chose the style/cut of dress they preferred. It was very collaborative," she shared.

"They all looked amazing on the day and I feel like that shined through the photos."

Additional sentimental touches included a nod to Olivia's grandparents.

The original date of their wedding (first time around) was her grandparent's wedding anniversary. 

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"They've both since passed away, and I was really close with them. It was devastating when we postponed that I had to lose that date given the meaning behind it," Olivia said. "But on the wedding day, my Mum gave me my Grandma's wedding ring, and I walked down the aisle to my Grandpa's favourite song. It did make me very emotional, as I still had them be a part of the day."

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As for the name change, Olivia decided that she wanted to change her last name to Justin's, becoming Olivia Molly McKeone. 

"Work-wise, Olivia Rogers is how people know me, so I don't want to change that, but legally and among family and friends, I'll be Olivia McKeone. Plus, McKeone is a bit more original which is nice compared to Rogers."

When it comes to work, Olivia is a public person. And with an online profile, this can open someone up to unwarranted comments. 

Mamamia was interested to see what the impact of that was like on Olivia planning a wedding, knowing it would be splashed across the Internet for many to see. 

"I'm so used to seeing my photos ending up everywhere (on news sites that shall not be named...), so my plan was to choose everything Justin and I love and that makes us feel good: if other people don't really like it, I don't care, because it was about us," she noted.

Listen to Mamamia's wedding podcast Hitched: The budget. Post continues after audio.


But something that Olivia also wanted to be transparent on was her hope for others not to feel any amount of pressure to conform to what some weddings on Instagram and Pinterest look like in this day and age.

"I know it's quite overwhelming planning a wedding and looking at other people's events and thinking, 'Oh, God, I have to have that'. I was very lucky that in the position I'm in, the dress I wore I don't get to keep that: I give it back to the brand, as they wanted me to wear it for that kind of reason."

She continued: "I would hate for anybody to compare their wedding plans to mine and feel pressured to have everything that we had: I think weddings are such a personal thing. On social media, you are seeing the very best parts of the wedding."

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Olivia also was upfront about costs. 

"The tricky thing is we really did pay for 95 per cent of our wedding. And I think people get confused because I tag so many businesses in the photos, but I'm tagging them because they did an amazing job. There were certain aspects like the dresses where I was gifted things. And I acknowledge that's a lucky position to be in. I just wanted people to know the background behind it," she shared.

As for what the future holds, 70 something hours after the big day, Olivia says she's still experiencing the high.

"I feel like I'm on a little wedding cloud that will only continue from there considering I start my honeymoon tomorrow. I know everybody says this, but it was the best day of my life: my face hurt from smiling so much."

All wedding images in this article are courtesy of Beck Rocchi Photography.

All wedding videography in this article is courtesy of I Do Cinema.

Feature Image: Instagram/ @oliviamollyrogersBeck Rocchi Photography.

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