Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love, what is unique about you and your relationship … We met four years ago with a little help through the wonder of technology (as many modern romances do!).
I work in marketing and communications and Elliot is an accountant, having spent the last decade working with some very well-loved brands in the fashion and apparel business. Together we live in West Auckland with our eight year old British Bulldog, Frank, and our almost-two year old daughter, Sloane, who is the absolute centre of our universe.
Elliot and I partied quite enough in our twenties to last us a lifetime and are now happily, self-confessed homebodies. When we’re not working, we both like to cook, read and exercise. I will always try and squeeze in time for my yoga practice and Elliot is currently hooked on F45. As fairly new parents, we don’t get a lot of time to ourselves but always make time for the odd date! We have an incredible support network of family and friends that allow us to take time out as a couple every now and then. Every other minute is devoted to Sloane; watching her grow is the single most fascinating and rewarding experience of our lives.
Looking back on our first date, our connection was undeniably instant, yet our first year of dating was not without its challenges. We have since learnt so much about each other, and ourselves, and our union is so much stronger for it. We are eternally grateful for all of our messy moments.
We got engaged when I was six months pregnant. Elliot whisked me away for a surprise weekend in Raglan. We went completely off the grid, staying in a little treehouse complete with zero-electricity. He proposed one evening, surrounded by candlelight, and afterwards we dined on fish and chips. It was simple, sincere and perfect.
Tell us about your special day, was there a specific theme or style? Tell us a little about the setting, the styling and some of your favourite details …
We had originally booked a larger venue, out of Auckland, with a much larger guest list to match, before quickly realising it didn’t feel right. We made a very hard decision to cancel everything and start over – as soon as we did, the rest of our wedding came together with ease.
We planned the day entirely by ourselves and, with some help from the lovely Naomi at Leaf and Honey on florals, we styled the venue ourselves too. Armed with a little brief, Elliot, his groomsmen and his Mum styled the venue the morning of our wedding. The styling was very pared back as the venue was already so beautiful as is. Naomi’s florals were perfect; she used loads of texture and dried foliage, accented by Columbian roses in the softest pink and white orchids. We also enlisted La Lumiere to dress the outdoor courtyard with festoon lights which really made the space feel magical after dark.
Beautiful florals, our closest family and friends, good music, great food and an excellent wine list (which was curated by the team at Maison Vauron to match our menu) were the foundation of our day. There really was no theme; we just chose elements we loved and it turned out to be a pretty great reflection of us both!
Tell us about your main outfits:
I wore two separate pieces by Lola Varma, both made from a gorgeous white, heavyweight silk crepe de chine. The look was modern and minimal and most importantly for me, not overtly ‘bridal’. I bought my outfit online a year out from our wedding and had it altered to fit by the lovely ladies at Meg’s a month out. It moved so beautifully and was so comfortable that I completely forgot to slip into a Paris Georgia set I had lined up to change into after dinner!
Elliot doesn’t often wear a suit, so I loved that he had a custom suit made for our day. He made the most handsome groom! His suit was made using an Ariston linen/wool fabric in a semi-bright blue with a completely custom horseshoe vest made in Portugal and hand finished by the team at Working Style. His shirt was pretty non-traditional, choosing a mandarin collar in white linen.
What were some of the most memorable/unique moments from the day?
Our wedding was pretty intimate, spent with just 70 of our closest family and friends. We loved that we got to share time with each and every person that was there to celebrate with us.
A few of our friends went above and beyond to contribute to our day, which made it feel extra special; our friend Tash designed all of our stationery, our friend Sarah whipped up a bridesmaid dress just two nights before our wedding and our friend Davie sang me down the aisle.
From beginning to end our entire day was so memorable, although our ceremony, led by celebrant Swami Yogamani Saraswati, will forever be etched in our minds as nothing short of magical. Both our daughter, Sloane, and our dog, Frank, were a part of our ceremony – we loved watching Sloane run back and forth between her grandparents, occasionally visiting us for a quick cuddle.
Half-way through our ceremony we invited brother and sister duo, Soul and Netta Brown, to sing an acoustic version of a traditional Samon song accompanied by the ukulele. It was a pretty emotional moment and the sweetest way to honor both my Dad and Samoan heritage.
Any advice for other couples planning to spend the rest of their lives together?
For couples planning a wedding; decide what’s important to you and your partner and forget the rest. For us, our ceremony and commitment to each other, and our daughter, was the absolute pinnacle of our day. We took time to write sincere and meaningful vows that we both loved and wholeheartedly believed in – after that, everything else was a bonus!
We don’t feel qualified to dish out marriage advice (yet!) but we’re big believers that you can never communicate enough. Elliot and I are constantly talking – about our feelings, fears, hopes and dreams. We are each other’s biggest supporters. Being married feels like we’ve solidified a commitment we made to each other a long time ago, and it feels pretty great.
Venue, Catering + Beverages : Mantells, Mt Eden | Videographer: Josue Films | Photographer: Nisha Ravji | Celebrant: Swami Yogamani | Entertainment: Mike & Davie from Written By Wolves | Styling & Planner: Alex & Elliot – The Couple | Hire: The Pretty Prop Shop | Lights: La Lumiere | Flora: Leaf & Honey | Cake: The Caker | Wine + Cheese: Maison Vauron |Groom’s Outfit: Custom Suit by Working Style | Bride’s Outfit: Lola Varma | Bride’s Ring: Naveya & Sloane | Bride’s Shoes: Alexandre Birman | Groom’s Shoes: Ted Baker | Bride’s Earrings: Borrowed from Mother, Designed by Sutcliffe | Makeup: Rebekah Banks | Hair: Tyler Drader | Bride’s Fragrance: Gypsy Water by Byredo and Blackberry & Bay by Jo Malone | Groomsmen Outfits: Hallensteins | Bridesmaid Dresses: Shona Joy, Bec & Bridge, & Sarah Horton Bridal