How did you meet and what’s your love story?
Jay and I met through a mutual friend at school. He was actually the long time boyfriend of one of my good friends at college. We spent years together as friends from the age of 14 to 19 then we lost touch.
One day he walked into a shop I was working in at the time and I was so excited to see him I was blushing like crazy. He asked if Id like to catch up sometime for a coffee and gave me his number. it was pretty much from that moment I couldn’t stop thinking about him..day and night it was very distracting for me. I realised at this time the fondness I’d always felt for him as my best guy mate over the years was actually love but I couldn’t identify it as I too had been in a long-term relationship with someone else (who was also his best friend) So I did visit him one day with some take out coffee and followed by a couple of lunch breaks spent together just hanging out like old times we very quickly formed a strong bond to each other and from there we were basically inseparable.
Within 6 months of meeting again I was pregnant with our first child Kohen. We had a lot of challenges over the following years with having two more kids close together and still being quite young ourselves but through it all we just got stronger and our love has just grown more and more and it still does all the time. That’s the true beauty, I’m lucky, I feel like I’ve been falling in love for years and still am as we get older together and mature together and test each other. Its exciting yet secure and grounding.
What was the proposal like?
Jay proposed to me the second Christmas day we spent together. We had a 3 month old little baby so had excused ourselves from one of the family home lunches to go back to his parents. He was very quiet but I didn’t think much of it. As I got in the door with the baby capsule and starting fluffing around with baby stuff I looked up after he had disappeared for a moment down the hallway and he was there at my feet on one knee with a ring in hand and said please marry me…I want to be together forever and ever.
How long were you engaged before your big day?
So we were engaged that christmas of 2007 and married 2014 so it was a long engagement.
Where did you marry and how did you decide on the venue(s)?
We married up at my Dads home in Parkiri. He has a beautiful spot high on the Parkiri hills with a big garden and beautiful family home so it was really a no brainer. We wouldn’t have done it anywhere else.
What was your wedding style/theme?
I can’t really say there was a theme. We as a family are quite laid back and not too worried about over planning things or trying to hard to make things exact. I wanted my day to feel natural and subtly beautiful. So I guess the style was relaxed.
What was your wedding look?
Again, I didn’t give much thought to a look a wanted for my dress. I just knew when i saw the dress in Sass and Bide that it was for me. It was a greek style I would say. Capped shoulder with sheer back and lovely embroidered/plaited panels on the bust with long sheer panels from the waist down. I wore my mum’s pearl earrings and some soft blue flowers in my hair. I had my hair plaited to the side in a fish tail plait.
What was the bridesmaids’ look? How many bridesmaids did you have? And flower girls/page boys?
We chose not to have bridesmaids etc as we wanted to keep it as casual as possible and wanted our kids to be involved so our two boys stood up near the front with us but they did get a bit silly so it didn’t quite turn out how we hoped. My little girl Vienna arrived with me in the wedding car with my niece Riley but they very quickly disappeared when it began.
What type of flowers did you have?
Jay and I both love Dahlias so I had bright Dahlias of orange and pink and white in my bouquet along with Lisianthums and cute wrinkly roses. I wanted a wild rustic look so had twine around the stems. Jay and my dad had Dahlias as shirt pins and my mum and jays mum had roses as a corsage.
The two flower girls had beautiful rose pom poms hanging from ribbons wich they held and then eventually pulled all the petals apart to use like confetti wich wasnt the idea but actually turned out to be a great idea as I didnt have confetti and was fun when they started to throw lots of pretty pink and white petals at us.
On the tables my mum and I arranged little jars and mini vases that my dad collects and filled them with all flowers from my dads garden. From lavendar to hibiscus and carnations. Lots of purple, orange, yellow, reds, pinks. Very colourful but delicately placed and arranged, my mum was a florist for many years so enjoyed putting these together for me.
How many guests did you have?
Who planned and organised the wedding?
I organised most of the wedding myself with the help of Dad.
What did you do to create atmosphere, relax guests and add to the mood?
We didn’t really do anything as such in regards to atmosphere or mood. The environment speaks for itself up there, but as the wedding was situated in the garden my dad set up a lovely white tent and had a big low swooping old sail from his boat hanging from tree trunks to create a soft light and obviously cover in case of rain. We had some lovely couch squabs and fabrics. The whole area was set with table and chairs so while everyone waited they were able to be seated and help themselves to the old bath we had sitting in the garden full of beer and wine etc, this type of setting I guessed meant everyone could feel relaxed and at home.
How did the planning process go?
I found the planning process lots of fun. I only really planned/organised everything 3 months before. I feel the special thing that happened for me during the planning was re-connecting with two of my school friends. Keryn who did the photography and Amanda who did the food for us. I have loved seeing them again and after so many years of being so busy with kids etc and loosing touch with old friends it felt so great to see them again and spend time together again. And it was super special to have them be a huge part of the day, so much better than having strangers doing the photography and catering. These are people I knew and trusted so I had all the confidence in their talents and ability to help make my day so special.
What were the most memorable moments of your day?
It definitely has to be the moments I stood before Jay as we read our vows and were married, it sounds so cheesy but I didn’t even feel nervous.. all the guests seem to fade into the background and it was as though it were just me and him standing there. It had been cloudy and threatening rain all day but when we stood there the sun literally came out from the clouds and we were bathed in warm sunshine. It was very memorable.
What were the unique touches that added through your day and the special details you included?
I can’t really say.. I guess we just tried to make sure things were very relaxed. Having a table set with lovely big bowls of salads and nibbles and the meat cooked on an outdoor stove/bbq just kept it feeling like one big relaxed family occasion. I think having things not too carefully arranged gave it a kind of rustic feeling, No one told where they had to sit or when they had to eat it was just very laid back. The way we tried not to have things too over the top and perfect reflected us as people and how our families are. We like things relaxed, cosy and natural. I try to go with the flow on most things in life and I think our day portrayed that well.
Where did you honeymoon?
We went to Fiji to the Coral Coast and stayed in a lovely resort called The Outrigger On The Lagoon. We stayed for 5 days and it was heaven… except for getting a tummy bug while i was there.. it was still fabulous.
Photographer // CAPTURED by Keryn
Videographer // Peter Micheal from Family Dvd
Brides Dress // Sass n Bide
Brides Shoes // Overland
Hair & Makeup // Ashleigh Esdaile
Florist // Florienne, Takapuna
Cake // Little Bird Unbakery, Ponsonby
Catering // The food was fresh and healthy. We had Amanda Whitford help us with the decision on the menu and she came on the day and made all the salads for us.
Transport // We stayed up there the night before but on the day I had my dad come get me from a house we rented further down the road. He picked me up in his 1963 Black Dodge Viper Limosene which he usually keeps on show in Parnell Village but brought it up for the weekend so we could have it for the wedding.
Engagement & wedding rings // Micheal Hill, Takapuna