Stuff's wedding of the week: Shalimar and Michael
A drop-dead gorgeous dress, a spectacular never-used-before venue, a gourmet food truck - this couple celebrated their love in the most spectacular way.
Shalimar and Michael tied the knot surrounded by friends and family with just the right measure of glamour and rustic earthiness on March 18.
But we'll let Shalimar tell you all about it...
How did you meet? Michael and I met through work. My previous boss, Grant, considers himself to be a bit of a cupid and decided that the two of us needed to meet.
He met Michael through his nephew as they are all originally from the Hawkes Bay. Grant had helped Michael find work in Auckland at our G.J. Gardner Homes office in Rodney and at that time I was working at the head office.
We had just recently moved into our office building and Grant put on an office warming party just so he had an excuse for the two of us to meet.
Tell us about the proposal: Michael is a very low key character and also thinks things through. We were going out for a date night, but before we went he said maybe we should put a bottle of wine in the fridge for when we got home. I thought this was a little odd but said yes all the same.
After a romantic night out we got home and when I went into our room, Michael presented me with the most beautiful ring. He didn't want to do it while we were out as he knew I would cry and didn't want me to feel embarrassed – what a thoughtful guy.
Location of the wedding: Our wedding took place in the most beautiful setting.
It is a new wedding venue which has been put together by James Lamb of Marquees Over Hawkes Bay, nestled on the edge of the TukiTuki River in Havelock North with expansive views back to Te Mata Peak.
We were the first wedding to be held there and we feel very privileged to be able to say that. It was absolutely gorgeous.
Describe your wedding day: The weather on the day was not forecast well, but it true Havelock North style it ending up being absolutely fine. We had a bit of wind for the ceremony but it settled down for the reception and that wind helped to produce some amazing photos.
Having planned events before organising the wedding, everything ran really well. We ran a competition for all the guests (Michael and I are ultra competitive) with outside games for them to complete followed by trivia based on us, the bride and groom. The teams were the tables and this ended being a really great icebreaker for our guests.
The dress: My dress was completely stunning – an Anna Campbell design purchased through Paperswan bride in Wellington. The girls there helped me try on a few dresses but as soon as I put on 'the one' we all knew that it was perfect.
The flowers: The wedding flowers were done by Natalie MacKenzie of Zinnia Flowers in Hawkes Bay. She did the most amazing job and her table centre pieces really set off all the styling on the day.
Highlight of the wedding: Other than marrying my best friend there were two. My younger brother Forrest did a reading during our ceremony by AA Milne called 100 Minus 1 Day. He spoke incredibly well and nearly stole the show! Then my uncle, who came all the way from Canada, sung his version of Everywhere by Fleetwood Mac as our first dance – it was absolutely beautiful. Two of the best moments of the day!
Was there any drama? What wedding isn't without drama? The bus company forgot to make a stop and then headed to the wrong venue. There were a couple other minor things that happened but nothing that took the shine off the day for us.
I had planned everything myself to the best of my ability and then on the morning of the wedding, just let it all go as whatever was going to happen would happen.
We were incredibly lucky to have the most amazing bridal party and family and they just handled everything so we didn't stress at all.
The honeymoon: Michael and I run our own G.J. Gardner Homes franchise in the Greater Wellington Region so taking time off isn't easy. We are planning to take some time for a honeymoon over the winter months somewhere in the South Pacific. We haven't completely decided yet but will look forward to it when the timing is a little more favourable for us.
Your photographer and favourite photo: Our photographer was Mark Tantrum from Wellington.
He took so many amazing shots it is really hard to choose a favourite but I think it would have to be the one of us just after we had been pronounced husband and wife. There is no one else in the frame and it looks like we were there on our own. But honestly he took so many amazing photos it is nearly impossible to decide on just one and it has already changed a few times.