“Janis & Mike met 18 years ago through business relations, only recently getting together 3 years ago!
The theme was a subtle 50’s/60’s flavour which fitted with their style and the venue choice. The bridal car was a 59 Chevy in the most shining and stunning condition!
The brides dress was 50’s inspired and custom made for her, I love the structure of it and the pretty floral pattern. Janis’s dress had a belt around waist detachable train, very unique! Check out her huge gorgeous antique ring!”
How did you meet and what’s your love story?
We met 18 years ago when Mike’s company became a client of mine. Much to our surprise we got together about 3 years ago. Who’d have thought?!
What was the proposal like?
We spent a week in Port Douglas in Sept 2013. Mike organised a dinner at Nautilus restaurant amid the palm trees & candlelight. I was remarking on how beautiful it was and turned to ask for his camera so I could take a photo and there he was on his knee beside me. He asked me to marry him, to which I responded “of course I will; now get up”!
How long were you engaged before your big day?
Where did you marry and how did you decide on the venue(s)?
The Officers Mess at Fort Takapuna, Narrow Neck, Auckland. I have walked my dog past this lovely disused building in a reserve overlooking the Hauraki Gulf for many years. A couple of weeks after we got engaged there was an article in the local paper about how Jeremy Schmid had leased it and was planning to open it as a venue. I promptly contacted him and we booked it.
What was your wedding style/theme?
A subtle 50’s/60’s flavour which fitted with my style and that of the venue
How many guests did you have? 130
What was your wedding look?
My dress had a bateau neckline with a v slash on the front bodice and a semi exposed back with two crystal encrusted bows. The skirt had inverted v pleats with pockets at the front and a deep slit at the back. It was ivory silk damask and the detachable train was a plain ivory satin with a crystal encrusted sash.
Who designed the bridal gown?
When I first met the very talented Megan Pratt (Megan Sara) I showed her images of some dresses that I liked and together we evolved the dress from there. We both really enjoyed the process – she’s so creative, a real perfectionist and a lovely lady. I was delighted that she was able to help me get dressed on the day too.
What type of flowers did you have?
My bouquet was a teardrop shape with lisianthus & roses in shades of ivory, pink, lilac & purple. Mike wore an ivory rose buttonhole. I had bought about 50 old cut-glass vases from various op shops & trademe which my sister-in-law & cousin helped me fill with lisianthus, roses & sweet peas and these decorated the tables.
What did you do to create atmosphere, relax guests and add to the mood?
We wanted it to be a fun day. Fortunately it was a sunny, windless late summer afternoon. There were drinks in the marquee for when guests arrived, the ceremony was held in the reserve looking across to Rangitoto Island. The guests contested for prizes in horseshoe throwing, golf chipping & nail hammering while we were away having photos. There was no seating plan for dinner. We had short speeches. Then there was the fantastic band who had the dance floor full ‘til midnight.
How did the planning process go?
Although it took a lot of time and effort there were no real dramas – everything fell into place, which meant we were reasonably relaxed leading up to the day.
What was the most memorable moments of your day?
The whole day was fantastic from waking in the morning to being the last to leave the venue at 1am the next day. It was all we could have hoped for and much more. We feel blessed to have been able to share it with our wonderful family & friends.
What made the day unique and reflect your personalities?
The 50’s/60’s touches. Our vows & readings were traditional but otherwise everything was light-hearted and relaxed. All our family & friends entered into the spirit of the day and that’s what made it so memorable. We’ve had a lot of comments since about how much everyone enjoyed themselves.
What type of menu did you have?
We had canapés outsideafter the ceremony which were reminiscent of the 60’s; devilled eggs, cheese & onion toothpicks etc. Then a sit-down dinner with shared entrée platters, a main course choice of eye fillet steak or snapper with duck-fat potatoes & rocket salad then Lime Tart for dessert. The food was prepared by Jeremy Schmid from The Officers Mess and was delicious (although we didn’t get to eat much of it!)
Where did you honeymoon?
We went to Rotorua for the weekend and are spending 2 weeks in Italy in May.
Photographer? BRILLIANTLY CAPTURED by Keryn
Bridal accessories/jewellery // I wore a small crystal headband, drop earrings & anklet purchased from local stores and a fine gold bracelet gifted to me many years previously.
Dress // Megan Pratt (Megan Sara)
Shoes// Trousseau Bridal in Auckland
Hair // Michael at Kent Salon in Takapuna
Makeup // Abby Sweeney
Florist // Emily from Blossom Wedding Flowers in Browns Bay, Auckland
Cake // I baked three fruit cakes and Lyn Walsh from Great Cakes iced them.
Wedding car //A 1959 Chevrolet Impala loaned to us by a friend and driven by my brother.
Band // Tina Cross, Suzanne Lynch, Rikki Morris & Stephen Small were our fantastic band. They are individually very accomplished artists; together they were amazing. We were incredibly lucky to have them perform for us.
Wedding rings // Custom made for us by Guthries Jewellers, Queen St.
Stationery // We designed our stationery & Superprint in Takapuna printed it.
Hire Company // Marquee from Hirepool
Forget painstakingly produced still lifes, far-as-the-eye-can-see landscapes, or heavily filtered abstracts, for me photography has always been about people. Though I have always been interested in photography and developed my technical skills throughout high school and university, it was time spent travelling overseas, using my camera to capture not only holiday memories but the culture and character of the locals I encountered, that inspired me to start my own business as a photographer in Auckland.
Since then I’ve devoted my time to developing a boutique photography business based around celebrating the beauty, history and personality of each person that comes before my lens, whether a precious (yet unpredictable!) new born, a bride bursting with excitement or the unseen yet undeniable bond between a mother and her child. (Not to mention a boisterous bridal party more focused on popping some corks or a male family member begrudgingly allowing himself to be the focus.)
My perspective on creating a great photo, particularly in regards to the portrait work I do, means it’s not about smoke and mirrors in the literal sense, but about a relaxed approach harnessing clever posing and photography techniques that mean you’ll see yourself in a new light, no matter how much you swear you’re not photogenic. Working with an enthusiastic all-female team means a personalised sitting with hair and makeup ends up feeling more like a girls night out than a stiff, contrived photograph to be endured.