Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love…
Alex- We are both from Auckland but live in London and have done for nearly 4 years now! We both work in food and our jobs, although for separate organisations, are quite intertwined and a slight conflict of interest which has been interesting over the years! We are quite lucky though, in that we have a great understanding of what the other one spends their days doing and the trade chat round home is very regular.
Sam- We are both very social, have extremely close and big families and live busy but very full lives. We love to travel, try new restaurants and head to the pub with friends, but each other and our families will always come first, it is a strong value of ours we are always aligned on.
How/where/when did you meet – and what were your first impressions?
Alex- Despite working in the same industry, we didn’t meet at work. Back in 2010 we were in the same university hall down in Otago. We became close friends but the nature of our relationship quickly became romantic and the rest is history! I struggle to remember my first impression of Sam now, but I do remember he always smelt so nice and looked so clean. Still to this day he is very well groomed and never without a spritz of cologne.
When did you first realise that this was someone you’d like to spend the rest of your life with?
Alex- I think we always knew we were it for each other. It’s such a blessing meeting your soul mate so young, but not without its challenges. You are always told how young you are to be in love and it likely won’t last, but maybe this also took the pressure off it and allowed us to grow together over so many years.
Was there a proposal? Tell us a little about it…
Sam- I wanted to surprise Alex with the proposal as she is such a hard person to hide anything from! We went away on a re-arranged post lock down trip to The Pig boutique hotel in the country which was meant to be for our anniversary earlier in the year. She had absolutely no idea and was speechless for the first time ever! We had an incredible weekend just the two of us with friends and family sending bottles of bubbles and gifts to our room and eventually coming back to London where our friends had decorated our flat and were all waiting with even more champagne!
Tell us about the vision you had for the mood or style of your wedding.
Alex- As we live in the UK we wanted the wedding to be the best combination of both our worlds.
We had old 1960’s land rovers as our wedding cars, tried to avoid the beach and keep the setting very green and leafy, but still bring that kiwi wedding look and feel to the day. We always knew we wanted a marquee wedding so we could make it feel totally our own, so it was really about finding the right property for that to happen on!
Omaha is a place I spent all my summers growing up, and when Sam and I got together, he joined me up there and we had so many happy holidays together at the beach. We were both in agreement Omaha would be a very special place to have it. When we eventually landed on the property, it was so beautiful we decided to keep everything else quite simple to make the most of it and not take away from the land. We kept to using only one kind of flower and wanted everything to look clean and white.
My sister is really creative so she came up with four pillars which we used to make every decision,
they were gypsophila (the white flowers we used) neutral colours, orchard and Omaha.
I never would have thought to do something like this but found it so helpful to come back to so I didn’t get off track and go rogue!
We used an incredible designer and artist to do our wedding stationery which was a bit of a last minute decision. They were so patient and worked to the tightest timelines to bring it all together for us.
We wrote personalised letters on the back of every menu for each of our guests to thank them for what they have bought to our lives which although was time consuming, I am so pleased we did!
Instead of numbering our tables we named them after special places we have lived or spent time in over the course of our relationship.
The artist behind our water colours painted images we supplied of these places and we had them on each of the tables. My favourite was the apple orchard tractor which was an image from Sam’s family property when it was a running orchard, we had this as his families table.
What was one element you were happy to splurge on?
Alex- We were happy to spend a bit more than originally budgeted for on food as we are both big foodies and knew we wanted the have an incredible meal for our guests on the night! The food was a highlight for us both, Source Kitchen, our caterers, put on a faultless service over the evening and everyone was raving about the menu!
Did anything happen on your wedding day that you laugh about in hindsight?
Alex- I don’t know if I am laughing yet but we were shorted four chairs which meant we had to use some from the house that didn’t match. I didn’t know until our way back to the venue after our photos and Sam told me just before we got out of the car!
I was in a bit of panic but quickly forgot about it once we entered the marquee.
Tell us about your main outfits, what was unique, is there a story?
Alex- My dress was designed by one of my oldest friends who I have known since I was 4. She spent many hours drawing up sketches from my lengthy dictations of what I thought I wanted, and we eventually settled on the dress I had. It was such an incredible process and she was the biggest perfectionist which looking at the photos I could not be more grateful for. Every week we would head to the seamstress out in Golders Green and Lucy would make another tiny amend to the dress so it fitted slightly better, or looked better from a different angle.
They were things I would never even notice, it was a complete honour to see a true perfectionist at work.
Ceremony location: Private property, Omaha Beach | Reception location: Private property, Omaha Beach | Videographer: Adelaide McDougall | Photographer: Johnny Scott | Celebrant: Hannah Bierce (Alex’s Cousin) | Hire: LL Hire | Flora: Devonport Flowers | Catering: Source Kitchen | Registry: Wedding Shop | Stationery: Nouille Design | Watercolour Illustrations: Brogan Scott | Brides Dress: Lucy MacDonald | Grooms Suit: Working Style | Grooms Shoes: Hugo Boss | Rings: Taylor & Hart | Hair: Jaime Randell | Bridesmaids Dress: Shona Joy