Stuff's wedding of the week
We love a good proposal story and Bekah and Tom's is definitely one that had us reaching for our tissue box.
The cute couple, who met through their local church, had an incredible wedding day on the picturesque Waiheke Island.
The pair and their guests danced the night away after a special ceremony that included Bekah and Tom's favourite memory of the day - the first time they caught a glimpse of each other.
We'll let the happy couple fill you in on all the other details of their amazing day...
How did you meet? We first met at church in Auckland, however did not really get to know each other very well and soon after that we both moved away to start uni. Tom went off to Dunedin and Bekah went to Christchurch. At the end of our second year at uni, the church we were still both connected to in Auckland was taking a group of young adults to Zambia and South Africa to run children's programmes for children affected by HIV/AIDS.
We both decided to go on this trip, not knowing each other well at all. We immeditaly hit it off and became best friends. We had so much to talk about and spent most of our free time with each other. When we got back to New Zealand, it did not take Tom long to ask me out!
Tell us about the proposal: The proposal was like something girls dream of. It was so romantic and Tom planned something beyond my wildest dreams.
He took me up to his family's bach at the Whangerei heads for the weekend, saying he just wanted to spend some quality time with me. On Saturday night, after a great day of kayaking and swimming, he asks if I want to go see a movie. Of course I say yes.
Little do I know, while we are watching the movie his mum and a chef and waiter he has hired from a local restaurant arrive at his bach and decorate it with lanterns, streamers, candles and fairy lights. We arrive back from the movie and as soon as I see the beautiful decorations I am speechless.
He then bends down on one knee and asks me to marry him. Following this, the chef prepares an amazing three course meal that Tom has designed, based on my favourite foods. We eat this on the outdoor table and watch the sun set over the beach.
It was just simply breathtaking and the most romantic and sweet proposal I could have ever dreamt of.
Location of wedding: We decided to get married on Waiheke Island, as Bekah and her family have a lot of history on the island and it is a special place to their family. The ceremony took place at St Peter's Church on the Island, which has a beautiful big window looking out to the scenic cliffs. The reception took place at Stonyridge Vineyard, which is a rustic, spanish style vineyard covered in vines. We were so happy with both places.
Describe your wedding day: In the morning, the girls got their make up and hair done professioanlly and chilled out eating food from the markets and chatting. The boys played table tennis and had a cooked breakfast. The ceremony started at 2.30pm and was very moving.
It was followed by an afternoon tea on the lawn outside the church where people mixed and mingled while enjoying champagne and local waiheke produce. Following this, the bridal party went to three locations around the island for photos and joined the guests at Stonyridge at 6pm. The reception consisted of speeches, a three course meal and lots of dancing.
The dress: I was so happy with my dress and how it photographed. I especially loved the train. It was my dream dress by my dream designer. The designer was Jane Yeh and the style was 'Amy'.
The flowers: A trusted family friend, organised two big bouquets for inside the church and eclectic flower arrangments in jars for the tables at the reception, which looked stunning and a local florist called Wild on Waiheke did the bridal party bouquets and the groomsmens buttonholes. My favourite flower, peonies, were still in season for our wedding so I was very happy to have lots of them in my bouquet.
Highlight of the wedding: This is a very hard question to answer. The whole day was unbelievably amazing, it was definitely the best day of our lives! From getting pampered in the morning, to arriving at the church, to marrying our best friend, to eating, drinking and being merry, to speeches and to dancing it was all fantastic. It was especially great to having so many family members and friends share in our special day.
The moment that sticks out for us both the most was probably seeing each other for the first time, as Bekah walked down the aisle. We were both overcome by raw emotion and neither of us could stop crying! Tom even started to hyperventelate, but luckily he had recoved by the vows! It was very emotional and special.
Was there any drama? Surprisingly not - we both try and avoid drama and are both quite organised, so I think this helped.
The honeymoon: We spent four days on Waiheke after the wedding, as a mini getaway and time to relax after the business of our wedding. This time was lovely, but it rained every day which was a bit disappointing.
We tried to go for a romantic picnic one day (in our raincoats) but the food ended up getting wet and blown all over the beach, so it was not very successful! We did manage a few wine tastings and long lunches at various vineyards however. Our highlight being a long lunch at Casita Miro, a spanish inspired tapas vineyard.
Luckily for us, we also booked a 'proper' honeymoon on Rarotonga, which was a great time. We hired scooters, which is cheap and easy to do and this enabled us to be very independent while over there. We managed to go scuba diving, quad biking, snorkelling and clubbing, as well as attend a cultural night and relax on beaches with cocktails in our hands.
It was a good mix of relaxation and adventure. There was a tropical cyclone while we were over there, that lasted two days and made scootering around the island a bit of an adrenaline rush. Trying to visit the markets was also fairly saturating! We have never been as wet as we were those two days. Despite the cyclone, we had such a good time and would recommend Rarotonga to anyone organising a honeymoon.
Your photographer and favourite photo? We were lucky enough to have Michelle Hepburn, a waiheke local as our photographer. She was amazing to work with, and had a very professional but laid back approach.
Our favourite photo has to be the one of us exiting the church after the ceremony. Bekah's arm with her bouquet is high in the air and we both have the biggest smiles on our faces. It was a moment of pure joy and excitement. We did it!
- © Fairfax NZ News