Leilana & Ben

  • Photography by Ana Galloway

Ben and I met for the first time in Nelson in 2009. We met again in September 2010 at a friend's birthday and got talking. In 2014 we headed our for a walk in Nelson at the boulder bank before supposedly going to dinner with Ben's family. Along the walk he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. It was a complete surprise to me and i said yes immediately. He had secreted some champagne and glasses with him aswell so we had a celebratory drink. Then instead of the family dinner we went to celebrate, just the two of us! We were engaged for about two years and got married in April 2017, Easter weekend on a Saturday. The Ceremony was at Bishopdale Chapel where Ben was baptised and had the reception at Founders Heritage Park.

I knew I wanted a close fitting,  lace dress with straps, in saying that I was open to trying anything. After visiting three boutiques and trying on countless dresses I came across my dress in To Cherish Bridal in Christchurch. Ben wore a chargoal grey suit, white dress shirt and a white tie. He also wore a pair of whale bone cufflinks which were designed by a local artist and given to him by his parents the day before the wedding.

Leilana & Ben
Leilana & Ben

We wanted to do a weekend wedding as we had a lot of family and friends travelling to Nelson and wanted to make that the focus. We chose Autumn as it's my favourite time of the year. One of Ben's cousins got married over easter weekend the year before and another cousin is now getting married on Easter weekend 2018, so I think it's now a wee tradition.  Nelson is our home and it's aboslutely beautiful. I'ved always loved Bishopdale chapel. Ben says that seeing me walk down the aisle, knowing all the the plans that had been made had all come down to that one moment was his absolute highlight of the day.

Leilana & Ben

My step dad loves his old cars and as a gift he organised us a classic car to transport us to the ceremony and back to the site of Ben's proposal for wedding photos. 

Leilana & Ben
Leilana & Ben

Our theme was a mixture between vintage and country. We did all the decorating ourselves with help from friends and family and hired the extra things from Got it Covered. We were very lucky to have Ben's Aunt do our bouquets and flower arrangements at the ceremony. We just ordered the flowers and she put them together for us, we had gypsophelia, queen annes lace as well as some blue hydrangeas and eucalyptus. Monique from Sunhouse Chai put together the table arrangements and made our beautiful backdrop behind the bridal table. 

Leilana & Ben

We had a three tier cake. The bottom layer was chocolate, the middle layer was lemon and the top layer was traditional fruit cake. We had white chocolate icing. 

Leilana & Ben

Just as i arrived to the ceremony we had a malfunction with the sound system. My aunty sand an impromptu song while my brother fixed the sound. We had a live band at the reception and then a playlist of songs to dance to. I have Samoan heritage and part of our culture is for the bride to do a Samoan Siva at the wedding. Everyone got up and joined in too which was really fun!

I have a very important piece of advice for brides. Make sure you know how to undo the buttons on your dress! Don't leave it up to your husand as there's nothing worse than waking up the next morning wondering why there's a bent fork on your bedside table!

Leilana & Ben

THE DETAILS: Bride's dress TO CHERISH BRIDAL; Hair THE CO OP- NELSON; Makeup POPPY MACPHEDRAN; Groom's suit NELSON TAILORS MENSWEAR; Bride and Groom's rings ANNA NALDER JEWELLER; Flowers ROSARIE FLOWER FARM, SUNHOUSE CHAI; Cake CAKES FOR ALL OCCASIONS; Catering PETITE FLEUR; Music SUMMER'S SONS; Hire GOT IT COVERED; Photography ANA GALLOWAY; second shooter photography SOPHIE ISABELLA


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