Michelle + Mackenzie by Bethany Joy
After one blissful Christmas together, I cried so much on the plane the woman next to me gave me an entire packet of tissues, instead of just one. Two days later, I quit my job and booked a one-way flight to Auckland.
Michelle ——Mackenzie and I met online while I was living in Christchurch and she was living in Auckland and we immediately hit it off. Like, immediately. We started a conversation that never ended — only paused when we were sleeping or, say, in a meeting at work (but even then, we texted under our desks and got in all sorts of trouble with our bosses!)
I came up to see her at every opportunity and I always cried getting on that plane and flying home. After one blissful Christmas together, I cried so much on the plane the woman next to me gave me an entire packet of tissues, instead of just one. Two days later, I quit my job and booked a one-way flight to Auckland.
Mackenzie ——I knew I needed to meet this creature from Christchurch. Michelle caught my eye straight away. What a woman I had found! Funny, passionate, incredibly beautiful and as weird as me. From travelling the world to grocery shopping, I just knew I wanted to experience it all with Michelle.
Michelle & Mackenzie ——Being a same-sex couple, we didn’t feel that an overly traditional wedding was right for us, so we ditched convention where possible and just organised the best-ever party. We walked each other down the aisle with our dads right behind us. And instead of doing a first dance, we hired a surprise drag queen to come and do it for us. Nobody knew she was coming (not even the bridal party) and the looks on their faces when she burst in at dinner was priceless.
We had La Lumiere create a beautiful tunnel of lights, which we situated our tables under. As it got dark, it turned the large venue into an intimate space and it was an absolute spectacle to behold.
Michelle ——Most things went to plan, although I don’t recommend couple glasses. They’re so pretty, but so easy to spill from and a guest spilled red wine down my front within the first half hour of the reception. We laugh about it now, but could you imagine being that guest who spilled red wine on one of the brides?
I had my gown custom-made by the extremely talented Fritz and Sarah, and it’s literally my dream dress. I wanted something classic but modern, with a unique take on a sweetheart neckline, absolutely no tiny buttons, and it needed to have pockets. Mackenzie and I both had a little message stitched into our outfits: You Make Loving Fun. It’s our song!
Mackenzie ——I found there was an expectation to either wear a dress or wear a suit and assume the role of a groom. I didn’t want to do either of those things. I wanted a feminine, sexy suit that made me feel like a bride. My suit was custom-made by Working Style. The jacket was lined with pin-up girls (so gay, so great), with silk lapels to match the silk bands on my pants. I was the best looking person at the wedding. (Love you, Michelle!)
PHOTOGRAPHER: Bethany Joy, @bethanyjoy.jpeg / MICHELLE’S DRESS & VEIL: Fritz & Sarah, @fritzandsarah / RINGS: Michael Hill, @michaelhillj / MACKENZIE’S SUIT: W by Working Style, @wbyworkingstyle / MACKENZIE’S SHOES: Louboutin, @louboutinworld / MICHELLE’S SHOES: Jimmy Choo, @jimmychoo / MICHELLE’S JEWELLERY: APM Monaco, @apmmonaco / MACKENZIE’S JEWELLERY: Michael Hill, @michaelhillj / MACKENZIE’S MAKEUP: Rebekah Banks, @rebekahbanks / MICHELLE’S MAKEUP: Paige Travis, @paigeoliviahairandmakeup / MICHELLE’S HAIR: Aubrie Hall, @aubriehelena / MACKENZIE’S HAIR: Johnny Brophy, @hairbyjohnnybrophy / MACKENZIE’S FRAGRANCE: Noir Extreme by Tom Ford, @tomfordbeauty / MICHELLE’S FRAGRANCE: Tempting Rose by Jimmy Choo, @jimmychoo / BRIDESMAIDS’ DRESSES: Blak, @blakbridesmaids / BRIDESMAN’S SUIT: Politix, @politixmenswear / REGISTRY: The Lovely Registry, @thelovelyregistry / VENUE & CATERING: The Glasshouse, @glasshouse.nz / FLORA: Honey Honey Flora, @honeyhoneyflora / CELEBRANT: Frankie Orange, @celebrantfrankieorange / CAKE: Jaime’s Cupcakery, @jaimescupcakery; The Cake Eating Co, @thecakeeatingco / ENTERTAINMENT: Anita Wigl’it, @anitawiglit / LIGHTING: La Lumiere, @lalumiere_nz / HIRE: Auckland Event Hire, @aucklandeventhire