Jasmin & Roman by Coralee Stone

Jasmin: Roman and I have been together for almost 10 years after meeting at a high school party.

That night, he’d been trying to set me up with his cousin Marshall, but then a couple of weeks later, we bumped into each other on a night out and our relationship blossomed instead.

We were both born in New Zealand, but come from very different cultural backgrounds. I have a Kiwi mother and Malaysian-Chinese father who was very strict. His way of showing love wasn’t through hugs or words of encouragement, but by sitting down with me every day after work to do advanced maths and push me to excel. Roman has a German-Samoan background, and comes from a family that shows love through hugs, kind words and spending time together. It was a struggle for us in the beginning, because I’d tend to bottle things up, whereas he’d always express how he felt, but we’ve come to understand each other and have built a strong foundation of communication that combines both of our cultures.

What made our wedding extra special was that it was essentially put together by our family and friends. Our venue was my in-laws’ home in Titirangi, set up by an army of loved ones; our catering and cake were provided by friends; we made our archway with branches collected by Roman’s boss; my gown, the bridesmaids’ dresses and the guys’ ties were made by friends; our flower girl’s crown was made by my brother’s girlfriend; and a groomsman took care of the videography. But our biggest supporter was my mother, who helped us so much from start to finish. In the lead-up to our day, we’d been checking the weather every few hours as we didn’t have a marquee or a plan B. Cloud was forecast, but when we woke up, it was pouring with rain! We had to change our plans from dinner on the lawn to fitting 100 people inside the house. Mum bought umbrellas and we set up the archway in the rain, but we held off on the rest of the decorating, so it was all looking very bare. Then, half an hour before the ceremony, the rain stopped, the chairs were put out and the finishing touches were made. It was almost unbelievable that we’d chosen to walk out to the Beatles song ‘Here Comes the Sun’!

In the week before our wedding, lots of other things didn’t go to plan, from Roman’s grandfather sadly passing away, to someone backing into my car, to my make-up artist cancelling – so to other couples I’d have to say, just enjoy as much of the day as you can. Committing an entire day to celebrating our love has created a deeper level of trust, security and intimacy in our relationship. It has reignited our drive to create a beautiful future for ourselves, and after a decade together, it feels like this is just the beginning.

Photography: Coralee Stone | Videography: Ben Claasen | Bride’s gown & veil: Esther Leonard | Groom’s suit: Cambridge | Bride’s shoes: Celine | Groom’s & groomsmen’s shoes: Red Wing Shoes | Celebrant: Swami Yogamani Saraswati  | Ceremony & reception venue: A family home, Titirangi | Styling: The bride & bridesmaids | Bride’s earrings: By Nye | Rings: The Diamond Shop & Zora Bell Boyd | Bridesmaids’ dresses: Esther Leonard & Kama Stretching | Catering & beverages: A Simple Soul Food, Daily Bread & Little Bird Organics | Groomsmen’s suits: Gibson | Groomsmen’s ties: Cait Kneller | Hair & makeup: Rachel Johanson | Flora: La Femme Fleur styled by the bride & mother of the bride | Table & chair hire: McGrath & Co | Dinnerware, napkin & candleholder: Two Foxes Styling | Glassware: Click for Hire | Cake: The Caker