Caylee + Simon by Hollow & Co

We had a very small and untraditional wedding. To be honest we didn’t know what we wanted so we started by each choosing 2 none negotiables and went from there.

How/where/when did you meet – and what were your first impressions?

Simon & I met at the AUT Student Accommodation where we both lived while we studied (Wellesley Street Student Apartment). We also both worked for Heat Pizza our local pizza store and had a lot of the same friends, so we got to know each other well and were mates before we started dating. We didn’t actually get together officially until after Uni.

Simon said in his wedding vows that he always thought I was out of his league (lol). My first impression of Simon was that  he was very cheeky and loved to party. With Simon what you see is what you get which I found refreshing.

When did you first realise that this was someone you’d like to spend the rest of your life with?

After I graduated university, my friend Lusinda and I moved into an apartment on Queen Street in Auckland city to live out our Sex and the City dreams. We quickly realised we couldn’t afford our apartment just the 2 of us so we invited Simon to join us. Simon and I were only dating but once he moved in I realised he could be the real deal.

He officially asked me to be his girlfriend on the 7th Feb 2014 at Rainbows End and from there we just seemed to be in sync. We wanted all the same things, we had a great friend group, life together was easy and pretty simple and we had a lot of fun. Life with Simon is still very easy 9 years later which I love and am very grateful for.

This sounds very cliché but Simon is the ying to my yang – he is calm and goes with the flow which works for me as I am a woman of a mission and like to be in control. Simon is very social and loves to be active which encourages me to get out and about more as I can sometimes be a bit of a hermit. But he also gets me, and understands that my job requires me to be very social, so on the weekends I like to chill and recharge the batteries.

Simon & I are very much a team and love spending time together but we also love our time apart. We have found a good balance in our lives that allows us to do the things we love with our friends and not need to spend every moment together.

Was there a proposal? Tell us a little about it…

Pre-COVID, Simon had my engagement ring custom designed at N&S, I was allowed to go to the very first consultation to choose the green sapphire I wanted, so I knew a proposal was coming. That said, Simon held on to the ring for almost 1 year until after the first lockdown and had me convinced that my ring was waiting in duty-free waiting for collection. Due to COVID, we could not travel so I assumed I had to wait.

Then at my 30th Birthday party on the 3rd of July 2021 (right before we went back into the 2nd Auckland lockdown), he surprised me by proposing during my speech/ cake cutting in front of 60+ of our friends. It was such a surprise and made for the most epic night! Due to COVID travel restrictions, we had none of our family present but we got to share the experience with all our friends and I was in full glam as it was my Birthday. I couldn’t even hear Simon pop the question because everyone was screaming so loudly but when I saw him down on one knee and with my dream ring I said yes a million times.

Tell us about the vision you had for the mood or style of your wedding…

Due to the size of our wedding (a total of 20 people including Simon & I) our wedding venue options were limited which actually made things a bit easier. I was super keen to lock in Mudbrick as our wedding venue as it is so beautiful on its own which meant I didn’t have to do much at all in terms of decorators or styling. We wanted our wedding weekend to be as simple and easy as possible. Between our incredible accommodation at Puirir Valley Estate and Mudbrick’s incredible staff, everything went off without a hitch.

We somehow managed to get the 2 days in May that it didn’t rain which we are incredibly grateful for as we got married outside on the Mudbrick Mezzanine. The only real vision I had for the day was that I wanted a short dress with a long veil and white hydrangeas. I also wanted my bridesmaids to choose their own outfits so we had a girl’s weekend in Sydney where they were given free range to choose whatever they wanted. It was a pure chance that they both loved the same dress from SIR in Bondi.

What was one element you were happy to splurge on?

Our photographer – Simon and I agreed that having a photographer we both liked and vibed with for the whole day was worth the investment. Not only do we love all our photos and have had several blow up for the house but Tom Hollow was so much fun to have around on our wedding day. Everyone at our wedding absolutely loved him and he made everyone so comfortable, we got some great shots.

VENUE: Mudbrick, @mudbrick_nz / PHOTOGRAPHER: Tom Hollow of Hollow & Co, @hollowandco / CELEBRANT: Caitlin Bowie, @onewhocelebrates / FLORA: Artificial Silk White Hydrangeas from Trenzseater in Parnell, Auckland / CAKE: Nadias Cake Co, @nadias_cake_co / GROOM & GROOMS MEN’S CREAM JACKET, WHITE SHIRT, BLACK BELT:  YD, @ydaustralia / GROOM & GROOMS MEN’S BLACK PANTS: I Love Ugly, @iloveugly / GROOM & GROOMS MEN’S BLACK SHOES: Merchant 1948, @merchant1948 / WATCH: Sentry Chrono Black & Gold by Nixon, @nixon / WEDDING DRESS: Bronx & Banco, @bronxandbanco / DRESS ALTERATIONS: Altered by Alter Me, @alterme_nz / SHOES: Valentino, @maisonvalentino / VEIL: Made by my Bride’s Aunt / EARRINGS: Natasha Schweitzer, @natashaschweitzer / RINGS: Naveya & Sloan, @naveyaandsloanenjewellery / HAIR & MAKEUP: The Peach Club, @thepeach_club / FRAGRANCE: Chanel, @chanel / BRIDESMAID DRESSES:  SIR The Label, @sir__ / BRIDESMAID’S HEELS: La Tribe / EARRINGS: Zoe & Morgan, @zoeandmorgan

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