Celebrations: Kaukapakapa: Garden Gala

Under the canopy of golden leaves and a crisp autumn sky, Matthew White and Bridgette Robinson married in the beauty of their own backyard on Thursday, April 18, 2013.


    Under the canopy of golden leaves and a crisp autumn sky, Matthew White and Bridgette Robinson married in the beauty of their own backyard on Thursday, April 18, 2013.

    Our love story
    Matt and I met while working together, and were close friends before he asked me out. I knew he wanted to pick my engagement ring for me, but when I found a 1920s-inspired piece – featuring an aquamarine gemstone surrounded by a halo of glimmering diamonds – I couldn’t resist telling him I’d found my dream ring!

    Setting the scene
    We wanted our day to be relaxed, colourful and fun-filled, which meant our rural property, with its sparkling pond and golden autumn trees, served as the perfect backdrop for both our ceremony and reception. Embracing a purple and green colour palette, we decorated outdoor reception tables with vintage crockery and vases filled with lilies.

    Dream dress
    I recruited local dressmaker Selena Grant to create a simplistic, silhouette-hugging dress I had designed myself. Made of champagne-coloured satin, it featured a sweetheart neckline and a sweeping chapel train. For extra bling, I sewed a Swarovski belt to sit on my waist and finished the look with a floor-length veil, pearl earrings and a pearl cuff.

    A sumptuous feast
    We set up two gazebos in the garden – one for drinks and one for afternoon tea. Instead of a traditional dinner, our 30 guests indulged in treats such as mini smoked salmon croissants, raspberry coulis cheesecake and chocolate and brandy mille-feuille. Matt and our sons designed our three-tier cake, which was iced in ombré green and included fruit and mud cake layers.

    For our guests
    Matt and I wrote a quiz for our guests to fill while we were having our portraits taken – it included questions such as who was the heaviest baby, or if Matt was a Disney character who would he be. The guests had a great time writing and sharing their answers, and it made everyone feel included in the day.

    Light-hearted entertainment
    In keeping with our garden party vibe, we set up croquet and a giant chessboard on our lawn. The Society Jazzmen, a 1930s-style band, provided our reception music – and even, on request, played the song my grandparents had danced to on their wedding day 60 years prior.

    My advice for brides to be
    Take a second to pause before you walk up the aisle. It’s a small moment in time where you can reflect on the love you have for each other before you are swept away by busyness of the day.

    The Details
    Bride’s gown Bride’s own design, made by Selena GrantGroom & groomsmen's suitsHallensteins
    Groom’s shoesHannahs
    Bridesmaid dressesLight In The Box and Dotti
    Bride’s shoesLight In The Box
    Bridesmaids’ shoes Bridesmaids’ own
    Bride’s ringAngela Daniel
    Groom’s ringSimply Suave
    FlowersMaureen Roke Floral Designer
    CakeMarron & Dulce
    CateringMarron & Dulce
    StationeryHayfords
    Celebrant Murray Cottle
    Music The Society Jazzmen
    VideographyShoot North
    PhotographyKate Robinson Photography


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