Frances & Sam

Frances Sim and Samuel Allen married at Sofitel, Viaduct Harbour Auckland, then headed to French Kitchen for an intimate feast with just 18 family members.

  • Photography by Anna Kidman

Sam and I had initially booked a vineyard wedding for 120 people in Hawke's Bay, but for some reason it didn’t feel very ‘us’. I floated the idea of inviting just immediate family to a reception at private fine dining room The French Kitchen, and Sam was quick to agree.

Frances & Sam
Frances & Sam
Frances & Sam

Because it was such a small wedding in an urban setting, I wanted an ensemble that wasn’t traditionally bridal. After lots of research, I drafted several designs before looking for fabric. Faye Marmont brought my two-piece vision to life: an elegant crop top featured an intricate floral appliqué, while a high-waisted inky black skirt made for a classically elegant finish.

Frances & Sam

Crane Brothers designed Sam’s two-piece suit, which he wore with a white dahlia buttonhole and bow tie that matched my skirt. His best friend, who flew from London to be best man, was the only non-family member in attendance.

Frances & Sam
Frances & Sam
Frances & Sam

Not inviting our friends was a hard decision, but people didn’t mind: throughout the day there were deliveries of flowers cards and bottles of bubbly, along with a plethora of text messages. It was wonderful to know people were thinking of us. The following weekend, we threw a party in Wellington to celebrate with those we hadn't been able to join us.

Frances & Sam
What to click next
Trending stories