Matt and I met when I was temping at mum’s work and at the time he was working there too. A few years later he slid into my DMs on Instagram, and that led to us going on a date. Our relationship quickly flourished; it felt effortless and we shared the same values and beliefs. While we knew from about three months together that we would be sharing a future together, it was a year before we decided to get engaged. In fact, on our fourth or fifth date Matt played me the song ‘Desire’ by Ryan Adams and said he wanted to play at our wedding. That ended up being our first dance song!
We looked at engagement rings together. Matt is quite particular and really liked the idea of us designing my ring. We were able to use diamonds from my mum’s engagement ring to my dad which was very sentimental to us, and we designed my ring through Diamonds on Richmond. One Friday evening, Matt took me to Achilles Point in St Heliers, Auckland, and proposed at sunset.
My work Christmas function was held at The Sapphire Room – a contemporary function space within Ponsonby Central shopping district. It was a hidden gem in a central city location. It hadn’t hosted many weddings, and we were able to completely personalise the intimate space with modern decor and timeless touches. We wanted to create a soft romantic vibe that spoke throughout the whole venue, using a range of different flowers such as lilies, orchids and roses.
I found it really really difficult to find my bridal style. I went to a lot of stores and struggled to find a dress that reflected me. When I saw Anita at Vinka Design, she immediately put me at ease and designed a gown that was modern yet timeless and elegant. I felt like a bride, but also like me. I chose an off-the-shoulder style with silk organza gathered over my chest and shoulders. Floral hand-stitched beading featured on the fitted bodice and the skirt draped over the ground beautifully. I accessorised with a veil featuring Swarovski crystals, Meadowlark flower earrings and blush pink shoes from Zara.
My twin sister and my best friend were bridesmaids. They wore black custom-fit dresses by Celine Rita – my sister chose a linen tiered style and my best friend in a silk dress with a full skirt.
Matt and I spent the night before the wedding together, and a small portion of the morning together. For us, it was perfect, as we went into the day feeling calm, and united as a team. We read hand-written letters we had penned to each other before going our own ways to get ready. It was really nice to have those calm and reassuring moments.
I was fortunate enough to have my mum walk me down the aisle to ‘I Need My Girl’ by The National. Matt really wanted me to walk down the aisle to that song, and it really did make the moment so special. Matt looked so handsome when in his black suit with a tuxedo shirt and a bow tie. We exchanged special vows and said “I do” in front of our closest 68 family and friends. We then took some time out for photographs around the city while our guests mingled in our reception space style by Two Foxes. We created acrylic name placements in a luggage tag design, so they were equally as functional as they were pretty!
True to summer dining, we liked the idea of having a light meal for dinner. Matt is known for his chicken and broccoli diet, so it was only fair that the menu featured chicken. We worked with bird on a wire to create a light but delicious dinner of roasted chicken, a simple and rustic potato salad accompanied by garlic oil and a baguette slice. Dinner was followed by dessert grazing tables filled with macarons, donuts, cake pops and slices.
Music was a big part of our day, we had created four playlists: before the ceremony, cocktail hour and dinner tunes, early evening music, and dance floor bangers.
We had six memorable speeches. Mum and my uncle left everyone in tears with the beautiful stories they told – a memory I will never forget. I shared a first dance with mum too, which was very special, as my dad passed away when I was young.
We flew to Melbourne two days after our wedding for a honeymoon and often reflect on our special day with the best memories – in particular our vows, but also the speeches and the love in that room filled by so many people who had travelled to be with us.
BRIDE’S GOWN Vinka Design. BRIDE’S SHOES Zara. BRIDE’S ACCESSORIES Meadowlark HAIR Natalie Dent MAKEUP Sam Hart. RINGS Diamonds on Richmond. BRIDESMAIDS’ ATTIRE Celine Rita, The Iconic, Ruby Boutique. GROOM AND GROOMSMEN’S ATTIRE Barkers Menswear. CELEBRANT Nikayla Tawhiti. VENUE The Sapphire Room. CATERING Good To Graze, Bird on a Wire. FLORIST AND DECOR Two Foxes. CAKE Dessert Grazeby Good To Graze. WEDDING COORDINATOR Julz Moulden VIDEOGRAPHY Patty Lagera.