Emma + Simon by Samantha Donaldson

Simon and I are both super hands-on and always looking for ways to exercise our creativity. Simon is a landscaper and has a deep love for the outdoors, paired with a passion for crafting and building.

Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love…

Emma – I spend most of my spare time making ceramic pots and vessels. When we’re not wrapped up in our creative projects, we’re spending time together in nature; hiking and exploring. We love visiting local markets for the week’s haul of fruit and veg, reflecting on the week that’s been over a coffee and chatting through our ambitious plans for our next overseas adventure.

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

We were renting a studio/cottage in Parnell that sat at the bottom of a sloped section. One morning we experienced a really heavy downpour which damaged the drainage and the wastewater from all of the surrounding houses flooded out from our toilet and into the cottage. We spent hours bucketing out the water to save our furniture. That’s when we knew if we still loved each other this much, even ankle-deep in sh*t, we were in it for the long haul!

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

Emma –  During the first lockdown, Simon had packed up a picnic and suggested we head out to Tāwharanui Regional Park for the afternoon. I was gearing up in activewear ready to see how many laps of the park I could get in when he told me we were just going to ‘relax and chill’. I was a bit confused considering this isn’t usually our style, but rolled with it anyway. Simon proposed on the beach after pretending to reach down for a shell – simple but effective!

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

We wanted to create a really relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. We were fortunate enough to have both the ceremony and reception at home where Simon grew up, meaning there was no pressure for guests to travel or arrive/leave at a particular time. We both really wanted to get married outside and being nestled in the garden amongst the trees made for the perfect backdrop.

It was really important that the day was a reflection of us, so we opted for handcrafted ceramics to line the tables, vintage wooden furniture and a clear marquee to set the scene of outdoor dining (with cover in case the weather turned). We love our food and eat dinner together nearly every evening without fail. We wanted to bring this theme to the day with shared dining, offering a chance for our families and friends to bond over a delicious spread.

VENUE: Private Residence in Karaka, Auckland / PHOTOGRAPHER: Samantha Donaldson, @samanthadonaldsonphotography / CELEBRANT: With Love Weddings, @withlove.weddingsandevents / ENTERTAINMENT: Private DJ / HIRE: Vitrine, @vitrine_nz / MARQUEE: LL Hire, @llhire / FLORA: Kensal Flowers, @kensal_flowers / CATERING & BEVERAGES: IMA Cuisine, @imacuisine / CAKE: The Caker, @thecaker / WEDDING DRESS: Anna Schimmel, @anna.schimmel / SUIT: Barkers, @barkersclothing / RINGS: Michael Hill, @michaelhillj / GROOM’S SHOES: Stolen Girlfriends Club, @stolengirlfriendsclub / BRIDE’S SHOES: Mi Piaci, @mi_piaci / HAIR & MAKEUP: Kat Anderson Hair, @katandersonhair / GROOMSMEN’S ATTIRE: Barkers, @barkersclothing

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