How did you meet your partner? We met through mutual friends at a bbq four and half years ago. Little did we know at the time but our friends were playing match makers that day.
How long have you been together? 4.5 years.
Do you have a proposal story? Richard proposed at a surprise picnic he had set up under a field of pink blossom trees in Canberra. We were located in Canberra for a year while Richard was studying.
What was your wedding date? 28/01/17
Ceremony Location? In the Summerhouse Garden at ‘The Orchard Garden’, Alexandra, Central Otago, NZ.
What made you choose there? The Summerhouse Garden is amazing, best described as a secret garden surrounded by lush foliage and a stunning wild garden of flowers. I am also a florist so I always knew I wanted to get married in a garden surrounded by nature.
How did you find it? I attended a friend’s wedding at the Orchard garden 2 years earlier and fell in love with the place and the area. Our friend’s wedding was held in the middle of Maze on the same property two years earlier, but our celebrant Glennys Logan had told me about the Summerhouse Garden – and it was perfect.
Reception Location? The Old Tractor shed at ‘The Orchard Garden’.
What made you choose there? The rustic feel of the shed and we wanted the whole wedding to play out at the one location.
How was the weather on the day? Beautiful; mid-twenties and blue skies. We were very lucky as it was the best day of the month.
Was there a reason you decided to get married on this date? No, we just wanted a summer wedding so chose January.
The Wedding Details
Theme? Our wedding theme was a mix of scandi, classic, modern and rustic and our colours were white, black and tan.
Where did you draw your inspiration/ideas from? Pinterest and wedding magazines.
Were any aspects of your wedding D.I.Y? If so What?
Save the Date cards - black and white cards with a leather knot sent out in kraft string and washer envelopes.
Invitations - black and white cards with a leather knot sent out in kraft string and washer envelopes.
White Popcorn boxes - that we made up for all guests to take on arrival, with the program for the day attached.
White confetti Cones - that we filled with white rose petals for the ceremony.
The Programmes - which included a list of the bridal party and the soundtrack for the day, as well as a welcome note to our guests
Round Aluminum Tins - with peppermints, for all guests on arrival.
Rosemary plants in kraft pots - for decoration during the canapés in the garden
Bombonieres - a wooden Swedish butter knife that we also used these as the place-cards.
Also, the night before our wedding my bridesmaid, plus some other close friends, baked up a chocolate chip cookie for every guest, the morning of the wedding myself and the bridesmaids put these into white paper bags with a wooden peg on the top; these were in baskets and given out to the guests as they were leaving at the end of the night.
Bridesmaids – who/relationship? All long-time friends
Roz Portass- Matron of Honour
Bec Ellery- Maid of Honour
Kym Church- Bridesmaid
Liz Burnett- Bridesmaid
Sarah King- Bridesmaid
Groomsmen – who/relationship? Who are again, all long-time friends, apart from William who is Richard’s brother.
Brett Dobson- Best Man
William Deihl- Groomsman
James Anderson- Groomsman
Glen Donaldson- Groomsman
Andy Scott- Groomsman
Wedding Gown (the most important part!)
What made you decide to come into Karen Willis Holmes? I googled online bridal studios in Sydney. I had a list of dresses to try the day of my trial, the Mabel dress wasn’t my first choice but turned out to be what I was looking for and suited my body shape the best. I loved the way it held my shoulders back!
Where have you seen our gowns (if at all) before? Bridal magazines
How many gowns did you try? About 6 at KWH, and probably another 15 at several other studios.
Where did you purchase your gown from (which store or stockist)? Paddington, Sydney.
What did you especially like about your gown? The 2-piece design plus the classic clean lined cut, a combination of modern and classic fused together. On the day everyone said the dress was ‘very me’, which is how you want to be on your wedding day.
Where did you get the groom and groomsmen’s suits? A mix of items from Hallensteins and Barkers, NZ Menswear stores.
What accessories did you choose to finish your gown and also for those in your bridal party? I wore diamond stud earrings my parents purchased while on holiday in Stockholm. Perfume; Gypsy water by Byredo. My bridesmaids wore round stud earrings from Witchery and shoes from Zara and the groomsmen wore bow ties from Barkers, Matt Black round cufflinks from ASOS
Did you wear a veil/headpiece? Where did you get this from? Yes a long veil, purchased also from Karen Willis Holmes.
What advice would you give brides organizing their wedding? Work out early on what your priorities are and put the most money/time towards those things. You can never be too prepared when organizing a wedding so try to be as organized as possible way before the wedding week.
What advice would you give brides searching for their wedding gown? Try as many as possible, even ones that aren’t the dress you have always dreamt about as you never know what’s going to look good until it’s on you. Try and find a dress what you feel comfortable/yourself in.
Anything extra that is special or you would like to share about your big day? I found on the internet the beautiful white ring dish from a company in the States called 'Palomas Nest', it has the words ‘Forever & Ever’ written in French on it. It was a perfect finishing touch as I knew I wanted something for the rings to sit on seeing as we weren't having a page boy.
Something Old? Old Danish coin tied into my bouquet
Something New? Dress, earrings and shoes
Something Borrowed? My bridesmaid's brooch which I tied into my bouquet with the Danish coin.
Something Blue? My mum's blue garter from her wedding day!
Other? Richard and I wrote each other a greeting card and had them delivered to each other the morning of the wedding when we were getting ready. It was a sweet wee highlight while getting ready.
Photographer – Dawn Thomson
Florist – Andrea Crawford Flowers.
Reception Flowers - Wendy at The Orchard Garden
Music – Live music in garden; Alastair Monteath
First Dance – 'I’m on Fire' ~ Bruce Springsteen
MC – Adam Dowsett, a good friend who flew over from London to be there.
Celebrant – Glennys Logan, Cromwell
Stationery – Combination of my own designs and layout by my graphic designer/bridesmaid Kym Church; we had them printed at a local printing company in Wellington. I then knotted the leather details on myself.
Menu – Menu choices by Wendy at the Orchard Garden. Menu card combination of my own design and layout by my graphic designer bridesmaid Kym Church; we had them printed at a local printing company in Wellington.
Bombonieres – Swedish Juniper wood butter knives, purchased over the internet from Sweden.
Hair – Claire at Beautiful Bridal Hair, Queenstown.
Make-Up – Juliet at J.E.T MAKEUP, Queenstown.
Large Welcome Sign on Easel – Sign by Confetti Collections, Orchard Ladder supplied by the venue.
Napkins - Pacific Linen, Cromwell.
Bench seats for the ceremony - One Fine Day