Sophie + Andy by Hollow & Co

We started drifting towards expensive yachts but fortunately someone from one of those yachts dived in to save us. We eventually found an intimate spot and I proposed.

Sophie: Andy is a landscape architect and I work in publishing. We met when we were 14, at school, before spending our early 20s travelling the world and our late 20s living and building our careers in New York where we had the most incredible five years. But after a year of the pandemic, we felt so far away from our family so decided to move back to Sydney, where we both grew up. Since returning, we’ve bought a former corner shop built in the 1890s and have spent the last year renovating it.

Andy: We were so young when we first started dating that there’s never been a point in our adult lives that we haven’t been together. We both knew from an early age that this was something special. We were travelling in Sardinia with friends when I proposed. I’d purchased a ring and knew I wanted to do it on our trip. Locals recommended an amazing secluded beach on a small island so I hired a boat but the sailing instructions were in Italian! We started drifting towards expensive yachts but fortunately someone from one of those yachts dived in to save us. We eventually found an intimate spot and I proposed.

Sophie: For our wedding, we wanted the venue to shine and chose to keep everything else understated but elegant with white floral, plenty of greenery and the whole wedding party in black. Most of all, we wanted to feel like ourselves on the day (not like we were playing dress ups) and wanted our bridal party to feel the same: I asked the bridesmaids to just wear a black dress (no matching outfits) and true to form they looked absolutely gorgeous.

We loved the idea of treating the reception as an intimate dinner party with our favourite people so opted for lots of candles. We wanted a picturesque venue that was beautiful on its own without lots of trimmings and styling and Mudbrick Vineyard was the perfect spot — it ticked all three boxes. We’re so glad that we splurged on the venue; it meant that we were relaxed in the leadup to the day knowing that the venue would be stunning rain, hail or shine.

My bridesmaids and I had our hair and makeup done at an Airbnb nearby but when one of my bridesmaids ironed her dress 30 minutes before the ceremony, she burnt a huge hole out of it! Fortunately, it was at the bottom of the hem and she ended up improvising. For my dress,  I wanted a sleek, high-neck satin gown but every one I tried on had something that was slightly off. I really wanted to find something one-off and designer but couldn’t go past the cut and fit of this Shona Joy dress. To make it feel a bit more special, I worked with an amazing tailor who altered the neckline to include two thick ribbons that fall down the back. I really love how it turned out.

PHOTOGRAPHER Hollow & Co, @hollowandco LOCATION, CATERING & BEVERAGES Mudbrick Vineyard, @mudbrick_nz CELEBRANT Renée Leonard-Stainton, @wedbyrenee ENTERTAINMENT Mix It DJ, HIRE Island Collection, @theislandcollection FLORA Wildflower Waiheke, @wildflowerwaiheke REGISTRY Virtual wishing well via Wishful STATIONERY Paperless Post, @paperlesspost GROOM’S SUIT Suit Supply, @suitsupply BRIDE’S CEREMONY DRESS Shona Joy, @shonajoy BRIDE’S RECEPTION DRESS Cult Gaia, @cultgaia VEIL Madame Tulle, @madametulle WEDDING BANDS Sarah & Sebastian, @sarahandsebastian ENGAGEMENT RING Natalie Marie Jewellery, @nataliemariejewellery SHOES Nina, @ninashoes CEREMONY EARRINGS The Line of Sun, @thelineofsun BRIDE’S LEATHER JACKET The Arrivals, @thearrivals MAKEUP The Lovers Artistry, @thelovers.artistry HAIR The Peach Club, @thepeach_club BRIDE’S FRAGRANCE AERIN, @aerinbeauty GROOM’S FRAGRANCE Aesop, @aesopskincare MAID OF HONOUR’S DRESS Aje, @_aje_ BRIDESMAIDS’ DRESSES Third Form (with custom bow from Etsy), @third_form; Amanda Uprichard, @amandauprichard