Real Weddings

/ December 29, 2016

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from the bride, Catherine… “We first met in London in March 2009 when a mutual friend hosted a dinner party and our paths crossed – Gareth would later say that he knew immediately that Catherine was the one. We began dating and spent the next four years based in London whilst travelling around the world, before moving to Auckland, New Zealand, in September 2013. In April 2015, we planned a trip to Melbourne, Australia, and it was here that Gareth proposed and Catherine joyfully accepted. Unbeknownst to Catherine, Gareth had spent the last three months working with a jeweller to design an engagement ring that he knew Catherine would love. Upon our return to Auckland, we began to think about what we wanted our wedding to be. The first big decision was which country to get married in, which was not an easy decision with family and friends spread across the globe! Initially, we weren’t sure whether to we wanted to get married in Auckland or have a destination wedding in the South of France – a place we both love. Whichever destination we chose, we knew that we would need to give our guests plenty of notice as some would inevitably be travelling a long way. We eventually decided that New Zealand made the most sense for us, as we were both excited about the design and planning process and we felt that we would be more actively involved in the process if we had a local wedding.”

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“One of the most important things to us in planning the wedding was to ensure that our guests would have a fun and enjoyable time, which meant that the food, wine and music were all high priorities. It was also important to us to choose a beautiful location for our overseas guests to enjoy. We soon decided that Mudbrick Vineyard and Restaurant on Waiheke Island was our perfect venue, with its renowned cuisine, wine and location. Mudbrick also reminded us of the South of France with its beautiful gardens and lavender. Given how expensive weddings can become, we quickly chose which aspects were the most important to us and what we didn’t need. Gorgeous abundant florals were a must, as was a delicious cake and romantic music for the ceremony. On the other hand, we decided that a wedding car wasn’t a high priority and was an area where we could save some money. We were lucky enough to find an amazing wedding planner, Danielle from Oh! Such Style Events, who helped us to bring our ideas to life whilst also providing us with savvy budgeting advice. We both really enjoyed the planning process and were equally involved throughout, which we understand is relatively unusual! Gareth has always had a keen interest in style and design (more so than Catherine!) and Catherine felt incredibly lucky to have such an amazing planning partner.”

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“The day itself was wonderful. We were incredibly lucky with the weather, enjoying glorious sunshine all day, which was especially important for our outdoor ceremony. We had been in two minds about whether to do a first look shoot, as we wanted to have enough time for photos but weren’t sure whether we wanted to see each other before the traditional walk down the aisle. In the end, we chose to do a first look shoot and were so glad that we did – it was an incredibly emotional and romantic private moment between the two of us. In addition, seeing each other swept away our nerves and allowed us to feel much more relaxed for the ceremony itself. The ceremony was our favourite part of the day. It was so special to be standing together in front of our family and friends to make our commitment to each other. We had a wonderful celebrant who really took the time to get to know us and to prepare a ceremony which suited us perfectly. Everything we had chosen really reflected our personalities and our relationship, with a mixture of romantic and quirky touches. We particularly loved the readings and songs we had chosen which were meaningful to us but also fun and light-hearted. We also felt very fortunate to have found the most amazing jazz duo to perform during the ceremony and cocktail hour – they had the perfect sound that we were looking for and added such a magical touch to the ceremony. The day went by in a flash; so many people tell you how quickly it will go, but it still disappears so much faster than you expect! Our advice is to make sure that you take some moments when you can to treasure the day and let it all soak in!”

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