Updated: Oct 24, 2019
She's the bitchin'est marriage celebrant you're likely to ever meet, a total RAD babe and hot mama, and a crazy cool wedding industry DISRUPTER. She's JAC THE HITCHER!⠀⠀⠀⠀
Jac's a Tarantino lovin' fashion assassin who just looooves meeting rad couples and crafting a fully customised ceremony just for them.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
⠀⠀⠀⠀ We recently got together for a rad 60s disco colour pop shoot in the studio, and had the BEST time!
I asked Jac how she defines success as a smallbiz owner, something I'm always pondering in this money-obsessed, materialistic climate.
She's got some pearls of advice to her younger self, some tips on staying organised and less manic as a busy workin' mama and deets on how she unwinds.
1. What advice would you give the younger you?
“It’s okay to say “no”, girl!” I have always struggled to put myself first and it’s been a big lesson for me in the last couple of years. I would defs tell young Jac “it’s okay to say no to others and yes to myself. It is hard at first, but gets easier the more you allow yourself to do so” and “selfcare is super important; treat your poor mental health just the same as you would an illness or injury”
This new career has been amazing for my mental health; I can choose my own hours - I work from home (or cafes – the other side of the counter is really quite nice) and it has freed up so much more time for family fun times. I feel balanced.
One more little quote I now live by, “Everyday, once a day, give yourself a present!” – Agent Cooper (Twin Peaks). Whether it’s a bath at night, a solo café date or occasionally, that ah-mazing somethin’ somethin’ you just saw online… It’s ok to treat yourself and taking time for yourself is nothing to feel guilty about.
2. What's something not many people know about you?
I’m an introvert… well an extroverted introvert. I do get social anxiety. So while I don’t shy away from the spotlight… and yes, I bloody love an excuse to dress up and go to a party… VERY SMALL DOSES ONLY! But I also find myself saying “Yes” to a lot of events I don’t really intend on going to so I don’t let people down, and FOMO… but then anxiety kicks in. Vicious cycle, really.
I think that’s why this job is perfect, when I’m in the spotlight, it’s half an hour on the mic and then I go straight back home and don’t talk to anyone for a week – family included! It’s enough to get a fix haha.
Also, I HATE scary movies, I’m the biggest whimp and I almost faint when I see blood and guts. I remember being at a 13th birthday party and we were watching a scary movie (more like me listening to it from under my blanket), I was shaking so hard that I gave myself a really bad blood nose.
3. How do you define success?
It’s finding something you’re extremely passionate about; finding your calling, using your strengths and talents to make a difference somehow, helping others. It’s being able to do that thing for a living and earn a decent wage (it doesn’t need to be an excessive amount but enough to allow one to live comfortably). It’s about having a balanced life; being able to call the shots, having the freedom of taking holidays somewhat regularly, being able to spend time with your friends, family and by yourself.
It’s working enough hours to be able to enjoy the world around you – not just living to work.
4. When did you decide this is your calling?
I have always been around weddings - working in them in hospitality or have been a guest at dozens of weddings. There were several events that happened within the time as each other. The first was the “yes” vote being passed – I happened to be near Parliament House on November 15th and the atmosphere was electric! I wanted to be a part of that party.
I am an empath and I just wanted to do something for all these beautiful couples, I wanted to just be at ALL their weddings!
Then after that event, I was working behind the bar at a wedding and I clocked-on at the same time as the celebrant arrived. She set up, did her thing, had some champagne and then she left. She was at the venue for less than 1 hour. It was a lightbulb moment for me… “Damn, it’s 4pm on a Saturday and now she has her whole night free – she could still go out to a party if she had one to go to and she’s probably just made 3-4 times the amount I’ll be getting paid and I’ll be here til midnight”!
I obviously knew there was more to celebranting than just the 20 minutes of work at the wedding. I was very familiar with how the ceremonies run and knew that I could do totally nail that – but I wouldn’t be like the average celebrant, I wanted to shake up the industry up a little, why do ceremonies have to be boring, how come no one seems to put their personality into their ceremonies?
So many times I would go to my friends’ weddings and their celebrant was totally “not them”… surely wearing menopausal mauve flowing drab dresses and using vomit inducing language like “honour” and “cherish” and those fucking ugly lace horseshoe things are not a legal requirement?
And the third thing that happened was being asked to MC my brother’s wedding – NAILED IT – and I had a lot of guests suggest during the night that I would make a “killer celebrant” and that, there’s such a demand for a non-traditional celebrant.
Between starting the night and cutting the cake, I had thought of my business name and I had decided to enrol in the course the following Monday and got my graphic designer straight to work with my branding.
I started the 6 month course soon after and completed it in 4 months. I was so keen to just get out there and start hitching. There was nothing similar to my style that I had found and I just wanted to plant my flag on that turf.
5. What did you wanna be when you grew up?
I don’t really know. Before I had this idea, I still didn’t know. I was always working in hospitality and loved it but didn’t see it as a forever job. Celebrancy was a very simple transition from hospitality because it’s essentially hosting.
I have always been creative, and had entrepreneur tendencies since I was a little gal – selling beaded earrings to students and teachers, learning to crochet and creating a little crochet business; making toys and teaching – Teaching was pretty successful for me – could become a side hustle again down the track. Crochet is my favourite hobby.
6. What’s one thing you'd never be caught dead in?
Low waist pants, those 90’s plastic choker necklaces, sneakers and jeans, died green or blue hair (just can’t handle the un-kept faded look – it looks like mouldy hair). Face piercings - only because I have the weakest stomach and couldn’t physically do it. I think they look sweet, I used to have my nose pierced but now the thought of re-piercing it makes me feel ill – yet I can sit for hours getting a tattoo, go figure? And on the topic of tattoos, you will never see me with tribal, a southern cross tattoo or an infinity symbol…
7. What's your favourite way to unwind?
A pot of tea, mindless crochet, or a book in the bath tub… I also like to start my week with some me time and go to my local café (just once a week) – child free and just chill for an hour. I actually plan my day around this weekly session.
8. If you could live anywhere in the world...?
I haven’t got an exact location but I want it to be 20-25 degrees all year round, literally the only temperature window where I won’t complain. Somewhere in the countryside but not too far away from a major city (for convenience)… by a body of water with amazing views – lake, river, ocean… I don’t mind. I have never really had the chance to travel much, so I just want to get out and discover some places. I think that’s going to be when Harriet is 18 now.
9. What’s your d-floor jam?
Oh man, “Down in Mexico” – The Coasters – I’ve been obsessed ever since I saw Tarantino’s Death Proof. Can’t help but wiggle my hips.
10. What’s your biggest motivator?
My biggest motivator is the need for creativity, I think. Crafting a ceremony that is 100% custom to each client is a whole new way to be creative – I’ve never really written much before now and I really love it.
Creative writing and working on my branding is just too much fun.
Plus the amazing feeling I get meeting all these wonderful couples and the kickass reviews that they leave me – it’s just so reassuring that I’m doing what I’m meant to do.
11. Have you got any hacks or tips/apps/ etc that make your business life more organised/ streamlined/ less manic?
I am a virgo, I LOVE organisation. I am a manual broad all the way, technology freaks me out. So, I love to spend money on my stationery – all about aesthetics. I have bought beautiful leather journals, diaries and folders etc. with my branding from a local book binder – I’m obsessed.
I live my life via lists and highlighters and I take great joy in making my diary look fabulous. I always use colour, little doodles, stickers and fancy handwriting. It’s a good little creative fix and putting pen to paper is therapeutic.
My counsellor gave me this advice to make everything look colourful and pretty – it makes busy weeks seem more appealing and I’ll be less likely to have an anxiety attack over the work load if it looks exciting!
12. What’s the BEST thing about your job?
The outfits, the champagne, the beautiful day trips/locations, the family time and the legends I get to meet and hang out with in the industry – like your fine self.
Everyone I network with in this industry are just they best – it really a great community
So pleased with how fun this shot was. Jac was a blast to hang with and a dream to dress up.
I LOVE meeting fellow purpose-led biz babes and sharing their thoughts and what makes them tick. Even better when I get to style them and play dress ups for a fun AF photoshoot.
Thanks Jac, you total queen.
For more info on Jac the Hitcher or to book her now for your nuptials, hit her up at www.jacthehitcher.com