In the picturesque landscapes of New Zealand’s South Island, where nature reveals its most breathtaking wonders, a unique wedding experience awaits those seeking something truly extraordinary. Gather & Gold a passionate wedding tipi hire brand, has captured the hearts of couples and set the stage for unforgettable celebrations.
Gather & Gold emerges as a breath of fresh air, offering couples a distinctively untraditional approach to their special day. A tipi wedding, with its rustic charm and connection to nature, breaks away from the conventional norm, inviting couples to embrace a more adventurous and authentic experience. Whether nestled among rolling hills, or framed by the snow-capped peaks of the Southern Alps, the tipis from Gather & Gold embrace the landscape, creating an immersive experience that harmonises with the surroundings.
Sarah and Chris, the visionary couple behind Gather & Gold, share an unyielding passion for creating unique and immersive wedding experiences. They consistently push boundaries and redefine what is possible, leaving a trail of enchanted couples and unforgettable celebrations in their wake.
With infectious enthusiasm, Sarah shares her journey, inspirations, and the magic that unfolds when love and tipis intertwine. Explore the Q&A below.
Sarah, How did Gather & Gold start?
As a Kiwi who found love with a Brit, I knew deep in my heart that I had to share the magic of tipis with my fellow New Zealanders. Taking a leap of faith, my partner and I sold our humble abode and poured every last dollar into acquiring these remarkable structures. It was a risk of monumental proportions, but our conviction never wavered; we were certain that others would fall head over heels for tipis, just as we had. And our intuition proved true. We’ve grown exponentially, evolving into New Zealand’s largest tipi hire company, and the joy of delivering countless extraordinary events since our inception in 2016 has been immeasurable. At Gather & Gold, our essence lies in our wholeheartedness. Pouring our hearts into every event we create is ingrained in our DNA. From that initial email or phone call to the very last tent peg we pull, our commitment to providing our clients with the most awe-inspiring experience remains unwavering. We know what an honour it is to be trusted with one of the biggest days of your lives, and never do we take that for granted.
What challenges have you faced and how did you overcome them?
Obviously, COVID hit the events industry hard and being situated in a tourist town made it even more challenging. Witnessing the business we built crumble before our eyes was absolutely devastating. However, amidst the struggle, we discovered our resilience, and this season turned out to be nothing short of extraordinary. The joy of delivering long-awaited dream weddings for couples who stood by us through thick and thin was indescribable. We are profoundly grateful for the events we were able to bring to life and for the unwavering support of those couples. Adversity undoubtedly made us stronger, instilling within us an unwavering determination to go out there and create magic as if there’s no tomorrow. There’s nothing quite like tough times to help us truly appreciate the beauty of the good times.
What are some key lessons you’ve learned along your journey in the wedding & events industry?
Trust and collaboration with your other local vendors and suppliers in your area are the keys to creating truly extraordinary events. The magic unfolds when we come together, united in our mission to deliver perfection. When clients place their trust in us and the vendors they have carefully chosen, we’re a force to be reckoned with. While each celebration is unique and holds its own special charm, we have the expertise to handle any situation that may arise and we’re always ready to go above and beyond to bring your dreams to life.
What inspires your work?
I’m what you might call an old-school photographer, having qualified in the pre-digital era. But let me tell you, there’s nothing that gets my heart racing quite like receiving those wedding photos and sharing them on our social media platforms. The talent in our industry is simply astounding, with photographers showcasing their unique styles and capturing the essence of each event. Every time those photos land in my inbox, I’m transported back to watching the event come to life; it’s the best feeling ever. Witnessing all that love and seeing those happy faces basking in the enchantment of the Tipi experience—it’s pure bliss. And let’s not forget about my love for a good scroll through Instagram, where the visuals reign supreme.
Any new products you are excited about?
YES! Brace yourselves for the latest addition to our event extravaganza – Sailcloth Tents! (Pictured above) The yin to our Tipi yang, these Sailcloth Tents are cut from the same proverbial cloth as our known-and-loved Nordic Tipis. These bad boys are handmade in America, woven together with love, laughter, good times and even better karma. Bringing the same ridiculous aesthetic as our Tipis and raising an even bigger space to dine and boogie, it’s a match made in Tipi heaven. We can’t wait!
What is the most rewarding part of running Gather & Gold?
Building dreams! The moment our clients share their vision with us, we dive headfirst into making their dreams a reality. It’s a journey that can span months, even years, as we meticulously curate every detail for their perfect day. But the true magic happens when the build day arrives, and I have the privilege of meeting the couple on-site, surrounded by our dedicated tipi crew, ready to bring their envisioned space to life. Witnessing their sheer joy and awe as they take in the sight of the fully-prepared tipis, ready to host an unforgettable celebration, is a feeling beyond compare. It’s a moment of tears, hugs, and triumphant high-fives all around. My love for tipis remains unwavering, and there’s nothing I cherish more than sharing the enchantment and love they bring with our incredible clients.
What is your advice to couples who are wedding planning?
It’s your big day, and guess what? You do you! Forget about all the noise and opinions flying around. You and your partner found each other, and you understand and adore each other like no one else does, so trust your gut and follow your own unique vision. Don’t let the expectations of others sway you. This is your love celebration, and it should be a reflection of your incredible bond as a couple. The most unforgettable weddings we’ve witnessed are the ones where people stay true to themselves, embracing their quirks and individuality. Oh, and a little tip to keep the peace: involve your mum and mother-in-law in some tasks to make them feel part of the celebrations too!