“Our wedding mantra: more is more! Music, food, cocktails, culture, dancing — all the good things in life.”

Mikayla: I spent most of my childhood in the country on a dairy farm, while Cruise is a self-proclaimed city slicker. Auckland born and bred. It was an unusual pairing from before day one. We have different tastes in just about everything. We met in school. It was your typical rom com love story — jock falls for nerd. Mr Cool chased me down in the staff car park and asked me out on our first date, which included my favourite song in the car on the way to the restaurant, rose petals all the way to our table, and a C hearts M cake. Cruise says he knew I was the one when I pulled out a left over cheese burger from my bag for us to share. That’s true love!

Now I’m an interior designer and Cruise is a program facilitator/engineer/entrepreneur. His playful and larger-than-life personality won me over from the start. I think we always both knew we had something pretty special.

Cruise proposed on a wet and cold Wednesday morning, the most unromantic day of the week. I had barely woken up when he got down on one knee. When he said he had a surprise for me, I thought it was the Nike running jacket I’d been nagging him about, not a ring!

We both called in sick that day. Cruise is of Niuean and Cook Island heritage so it was important to us to embrace the culture and be bold with colour. We wanted the wedding to be unique, playful. I was determined to create an al fresco dining experience and luckily for us, the weather gods pulled through. We added a few personal touches — I made the chequered tile boxes and plinths to add another pop of colour and Cruise, with help from the boys, organised and built the freestanding walls which made for great photo backdrops.

Our wedding mantra: more is more! Music, food ,cocktails, culture, dancing — all the good things in life. Florals were also a biggie for me. We got married at Cruise’s family property in Taupaki and our challenge was transforming a paddock into a masterpiece. The florals did just that. They were fun,sculptural, modern, loud, with the perfect addition of fruit.

I always thought I’d wear a pantsuit to my wedding. And certainly not white. So I was just as surprised as anyone to wear and love something so feminine, puffs and all! Both the girls and I wore custom outfits and I couldn’t have loved the process more. They were topped off beautifully with our ei upoko (garlands) which were made by Cruise’s Mum. We wanted the boys in black and white to balance all the colour. Something slick. I dragged them around every shop trying to find a simple white shirt with covered buttons which apparently is not a thing!We eventually managed to find one and the vision came together perfectly — even if they were melting in the heat.

Photographer: Ash from Sapphire Studios, @sapphirestudio / Location: Family residence, Taupaki / Brides Attire: Custom from Brooke Tyson Ritual , @brooketysonritual / Groom + Groomsmen Attire: Johnny Bigg , @johnnybigg / Groom + Groomsmen Shirts: Barkers , @barkersclothing / Makeup: Rae Sacha @rae_makeup / Hair: Vivian from M11 Studio , @m11studio, @hair_by_vvn / Brides Earrings: Jasmin Sparrow , @jasminsparrowjewellery / Earrings: Olivia , @olivianzstore / Brides Ring: Meadowlark, @meadowlarkjewellery / Grooms Ring: Custom from Love Lock , @love___lock / Tilled Box: Made by the bride / Celebrant: Josh Peters, a close friend / Brides Fragrances: Gentle Fluidity Gold by Maison Francis Kurkdjian , @maisonfranciskurkdjian,via Mecca Beauty , @meccabeauty / Grooms fragrance: Code by Giorgio Armani @giorgioarmani, via Farmers, @farmersnz / Brides Shoes: Tony Bianco , @tonybianco / Groom + Groomsmen Shoes: R.M.Williams , @rmwilliams / Flora: Floral Stylist ,@floralstylist / Bridesmaids Attire: Custom from Brooke Tyson Ritual , @brooketysonritual / Bridesmais Shoes: Zara, @zara, The Iconic, @theiconicau & Shein , @sheinofficial / Brides Bag: Brie Leon , @brie_leon / Hire: LL Hire ,@llhire + Folio Hire , @foliohire + Arkade Hire , @arkade_hire / Linen: Tble Linen , @tble.linen.hire / Bevergaes: Beverage Smart , @beveragesmartnz / Catering: Cook & Butler Catering / Cakes: Bride’s mother, Sandi / Stationery: Hey Lola , @heyloladesign / Cook Island Dancers: Anuanua Performing Arts Troupe @anuanua_dancecookislands / Live Music: TJ Taotua @tjtaotua1980 / DJ: J Lee @djleemz