Weddings of the week
These 24-year-olds from Morrinsville first fell in love at college, went their separate ways, and then fell in love all over again.
Their picture perfect wedding was so gorgeous it cleared Cambridge's thunderstorms: introducing dairy farming couple Cole Townsend and Josephine Tarrant.
How did you meet? We actually met at college, in science class. We dated for about two years, but decided to go our own ways after we finished school. I went off to Europe and Cole went to study in Tauranga. Who would have thought, but two years later we met up at the 2009 Big Day Out, and from there on we were inseparable.
Tell us about the proposal: Well, right from when we got back together, we knew we were going to get married; it was only a matter of when. I had actually chosen my ring (on Boxing Day 2011) under the condition that Cole got to keep it until he felt like proposing. It was our two year anniversary; Cole had booked us a weekend away at Hidden Valley Retreat in Raglan (which is a beautiful place). I had my suspicions that he would propose, and all day I was waiting - but no ring!
It wasn't until that night (he was hiding it under his pillow) that he popped the question. It's the funniest thing, even though I was prepared, I was still so shocked and excited. It was the second best day of my life
Location of wedding: Sarnia Park, Cambridge. The property is 29 acres and has eight acres of manicured gardens, which are designed to include three garden rooms for wedding ceremonies. It was perfect as not only were the gardens amazing but there were two wet weather options just in case: a beautiful 100-year-old Chapel or the Ball Room in the lodge.
Beverly Gower who runs and owns Sarnia Park with her husband, was absolutely amazing and made sure everything was taken care of. It was an amazing wedding location, that's for sure.
Describe your wedding day: We kept it traditional and didn't see each other until the ceremony. My three bridesmaids and five sisters all stayed in Cambridge the night before. The hair and make-up started at 7.30 in the morning and we were off to Sarnia Park by 11.30. My eldest sister, Katrina owns a beauty salon in Morrinsville - Porcelain Beauty - and she did all of our make-up. I was so pleased, I would not have wanted anyone else to do it - she is truly amazing. My incredible mother and mother in-law made sure everything was perfect for the reception so that I didn't have to worry about a thing.
Once we were all at Sarnia park, Cole and I handed our gifts and letters (that we wrote to each other that morning) over to his best man and my maid of honour, and then they traded them for us. It was such an emotional morning. Before we knew it, it was time to put our dresses on and head downstairs. My bridesmaids wore simple but beautiful white knee length dresses and my five sisters all wore lilac dresses in different styles.
The ceremony was beautiful, and the weather was perfect after a week of thunderstorms. Cole had everyone bawling when he started to show emotion as we began to walk down the aisle. Bella our Chocolate Labrador walked down with my first bridesmaid, Cole's younger brother who was the pageboy, walked down with the second and my niece, the flower girl, was supposed to walk down with the third, however she decided that she didn't want to at the last minute (she is only 1 1/2 yrs old).
The reception was full of tears, laughter and dancing. The four-piece band we hired had everyone dancing all night - they were fantastic. We had 120 guests whom were all very satisfied with the amazing buffet from the Hamilton Spit Roast Company, followed by the most amazing cake - which not only looked incredible but tasted even better. Our cake was made by Nikki at Swirl Cake Design. She was able to incorporate our monogram that I made to use throughout the wedding, from our invitations to the place name cards.
The dress: My dress was perfect. It was Nova by Maggie Sottero, so comfortable to wear and everyone loved it - It was what I always imagined myself to wear on my wedding day.
The flowers: My flowers were a mix of white roses and white hydrangea.
Highlight of the wedding: It would have to be seeing all our family and friends together. Both of our families are huge and are spread all over the place, so we were so grateful for the effort everyone made to be there for us on the day. A lot of our good friends live overseas also, so it was just amazing that they gave up their time and money to make it, without them it would not have been the same.
Another highlight was being able to have a darling Bella with us (our chocolate Labrador).
Was there any drama? I was so prepared for drama, but I can honestly say no. The worst thing that happened was that one of the place name cards went missing; however it turned up at the last minute.
The honeymoon: We spent two weeks in Thailand and stayed a couple of nights in Singapore on our way home. Cole's brother and his partner (who was also my bridesmaid) joined us too. It was an amazing trip full of many fun-filled activities: sun, drinking, eating and relaxing!
Your photographer and favourite photo? Mike Hill Photography. This guy is incredibly talented - I recommend him to everyone! My favourite photo...very hard question as I loved every single one, but it would have to be the one with us and Bella!