With a beautiful ceremony among nikau palms, this Greenmantle Estate Lodge wedding feels like a tropical paradise. An even closer look reveals amazing vintage finds and DIY touches like hundreds of paper pinwheels and a personalized giant Jenga set, all beautifully captured by My Heart Follows Photography in the full gallery! Plus, don’t miss the heartwarming film by Yashua Lesa Creative below!
From the beautiful Bride… There had only been a small window of 8 weeks between graduating with an MBA and our big day, with the Christmas & New Year holiday season right smack bang in the middle of that. Up until graduation all focus had been on my study and suddenly there it was less than 2 months to the wedding and a year’s collection of bits and pieces, and ideas and concepts to bring to fruition and make an amazing wedding day. The days had speed by crazily and the week leading up to the wedding was a roller coaster of emotion; tension, excitement, nerves, laughter and tears!
Although notorious for being one of the windiest cities in the world it is also commonly said that you can’t beat Wellington (New Zealand) on a good day and while the long range forecast had threatened rain the 17th of January our wedding day was amazing. It definitely couldn’t have been beat.
We had wanted our guests to be wowed and dreamed up detail after detail to add uniqueness to the day. The venue was the first option we had visited the summer a year earlier, and we looked no further, it offered a one stop shop for all parts of our day, no need even to leave for photos. The amazing nikau grove would transport our guests to another world for the ceremony, the lawn was perfect for relaxed champagne and canapés and the poolside reception area was like tropical resort venue. It was 3 venues in one.
I had also stumbled upon the silk fabric for the bridesmaids dresses 6 months prior to the wedding and fell in love instantly. A bridal shop was shutting down and was able to sell me rolls of the fabric at a steal! One roll was large peonies in various shades of pinks, bright greens and even a tinge of purple on a shimmering ivory background, the other roll was the same but with a black background. The silk was so beautiful it became the key focal point in my mind and an amazing centrepiece for the wedding to be built around – I carried a scrap with me at all times to whip out for matching purposes!
The venue, the choice of fabric, a plethora of magazines and Pinterest pins inspired so many amazing images in my head and the massive challenge was to get these into real life within a reasonable budget and a pretty short time frame, but my fiancé was amazing; nothing I suggested was too much, too hard, too crazy and he played along with all my dreams for the day.
We spent every spare weekend trawling hospice and second hand stores for amazing treasures to add to the wedding decor; crystal and silver bud vases, silver platters, glass jars, bowls and tidbits to add to the detail. We collected huge glass storage jars to build a lolly table of epic proportions. Our craftiness went into overdrive; we folded hundreds of paper pinwheels – to create an amazing colour graduated pinwheel wall. We cut and stenciled piece after piece to create a personalized giant Jenga set. Our guest book was ordered to come from the UK and was a jigsaw puzzle for the guests to leave a message and assemble. And we went all out on the guest favours collecting vintage key rings for the men and sewing silk scarves from the bridesmaid fabric for the women – and then presented the gifts in mason jar for the guests to use and take home.
I stumbled across an amazing dressmaker Zowie Dee who had the skill of reading my mind! Zowie was able to personalize my off the rack Sera Lilly gown and make it even more special and the bridesmaid’s dresses turned out more beautiful than I could have imagined along with the flower girl and even a matching dress for my head bridesmaids baby. My mum had her outfit made in the black version of the silk for contrast. The fabric was a dream and the everyone looked absolutely stunning.
I refused to delegate, but this was my preference, I’m not a control freak but I needed to make sure the images in my head came out exactly as I wanted. The venue commented on the day before the wedding as I set up tables, chairs, napkins and more that I was the first bride who actually did EVERYTHING herself!
The morning of the wedding I had hair in rollers and panic mode full on it but it was like an amazing unspoken delegation evolved, as friends and family arrived to assist and fell into jobs and roles. This just made the day so much more special and our wedding photos show the entire day being pieced together by the special people in our lives. The love and support tinged with excitement and happiness was overwhelming. Finally I was able to relax and feel the excitement of the day! Fifteen minutes prior to the ceremony we had family friends, still not changed into wedding attire, arranging flowers on tables and perfecting detail! But it was fabulous to have everyone hands on!
We relived the day over and over the following few weeks – the work we had put in personally was so made so worthwhile because guest after guest gave us much feedback for showing their appreciation for all the little details – everyone had something that really struck them and created a happy memory – it the best day ever!
Photography: My Heart Follows Photography | Videography: Yashua Lesa Creative | Floral Design: Black Rose Florist | Wedding Dress: Sera Lilly | Cake: Stiletto Studio Cakes | Stationery: Minted | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Zowie Dee | Catering: Creme Cuisine | Groom's Attire: Rembrandt Suit | Groomsmen's Attire: Hallensteins | Venue: Greenmantle Estate Lodge | Hair And Make-up: Claudine Stace | Sugar Flowers For Wedding Cake: Sugar Flowers And Cakes By Carey | Wedding Dress Alteration: Zowie Dee | Wedding Dress Sash: Juli Bridal | Wedding Rings: Michael Hill Jewellers