Mr Theodore Issue 18

 The founder of a company that focuses on wedding suppliers who support marriage equality, Alexander Ross explains how a passion for supporting equal rights bring people together…. 

Alexander Ross had been obsessed with the world of weddings ever since he could remember. Friends used to joke he could plan nuptials with his eyes closed by the age of 10. You can imagine his dismay, then, when he came to organise his own celebration in 2014, and found the advice and inspiration was focused entirely on brides. Many vendors made he and his partner Nick feel unwelcome, and some of his own family wanted no part in their happiness. 

Determined that other same-sex couples wouldn’t have to suffer such disappointment and discrimination, he decided to develop Mr Theodore, a chic wedding directory of pro-marriage-equality suppliers and real-wedding inspiration from Australia and around the world. Today, the Melbourne husband and husband each has a hand in the business, which has expanded to include a couple-vendor matchmaking service called Saint Theodore, and a new magazine. 

Mr Theodore was launched in 2015, two years before the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Australia, and was welcomed into the wedding industry. “During our marriage equality vote, it was a tough time, but I felt as though we’d really brought the industry together over this issue, as well as creating a safe space for LGBTQI+ couples to feel comfortable and supported when so much of the country wasn’t supportive,” says Alexander. “What surprises me is the number of wedding business that have come out and said they don’t support LGBTQI+ marriage since the legalisation. It baffles me every day. Mr Theodore is needed now more than ever. The main thing that brings us and our vendors together is our passion and activism for equal rights and supporting businesses that want to make this known.” 

Alexander says he and Nick have loved every moment of the Mr Theodore journey. “The sheer joy, excitement and energy of our couples is totally infectious and the wedding industry is just so spectacular. I really feel as though I was put on earth to revel in it and push its boundaries. What’s important to us is that LGBTQI+ couples are welcomed and celebrated. Mr Theodore will always be there for this community, whether through weddings or beyond.” 

The pair met on Alexander’s first day in a new job. “Nick walked past my workplace and I turned to my superior and said, ‘Wow, who’s that?’ Discovering he was employed next door, Alexander predicted, “He’s going to be my husband one day.” Two months later, he built up the courage to ask Nick on a date. 

Love is both the cause and the effect of Mr Theodore, and a big motivating factor. “Without love, it’d be pretty bleak,” says Alexander. “The energy it puts out changes lives, and with that always at the back of your mind, you can do extraordinary things.”

Ed’s note — Congratulations and best of luck to Alexander and Nick on the launch of their new wedding magazine, Mr Theodore Weddings. We can’t wait to see another modern, supportive and inclusive publication on the shelves, facilitating change for good! — Greta

 Mr Theodore | Words—Philippa Prentice | Photography—It’s Beautiful Here | Saint Theodore