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With its fabulous backdrops, gorgeous wineries and the best weather in the country, what better location to host your wedding! Here are some little tit-bits to get your creative juices flowing.
Find inspiration for your own Hawke's Bay wedding in the stories of couples who have lived out their dream day in the Bay.
Hawke's Bay's Ocean Beach is a special place filled with memories for so many of us from this part of New Zealand. But for Birdy Hansen, this long stretch of coastline has a history so deeply connected to her family, it was impossible to imagine her wedding to Jono happening anywhere else. Michelle Fey and Rebekah Trafford illustrated her day with their images, and Birdy has relived the special moments here on our blog in her own words. As always, we feel so honoured that our couples generously let us share the biggest, most personal day of their lives.
'I read an interview about a wedding that really resonated with me. They got married in his parents garden with 10 of their closest friends and family and then the bride cooked them all dinner. I absolutely loved that idea- that it was so warm and intimate and just about their love for each other. We ended up having 100 of our closest friends and family to celebrate with us so obviously me cooking for them all was not going to be an option but I still wanted it to have that warm and homely vibe where everyone just felt super comfortable and in the moment. I went with a rustic, earthy theme with plenty of soft lighting.'
'The farm, Haupouri Station in Hawke's Bay, is such a special place to me and my family. My Mum and Dad are the seventh generation to farm the land, my sister and I will be the eighth. It's so beautiful out there, there really is no other place like it in the world. We also have so much history there, and I think you can really feel that. So I couldn't have imagined getting married anywhere else. Even though I live in Sydney at the moment, the farm will always be the place Jono and I consider home.'
'The ceremony was actually my favourite part. Our celebrant, Nichola Nicholson, was AMAZING. She wrote the most beautiful ceremony which made it so personal. We also wrote our own vows which I loved. Another favourite thing was surprising Jono by arriving by helicopter. It was such a hard secret to keep but he was blown away!'
'The wedding vendors in Hawkes Bay really are the dream team. They are all so talented in their own fields and are so helpful and friendly, so it makes planning a wedding easy. I just don't think you can beat that warm, homely feeling of a country marquee wedding. At times when you work out all the things you need and how much it's all going to cost it can seem a bit overwhelming, but on the day having that personal touch is so worth it.'
Hapouri Station, Ocean Beach
Zinna Floral Design
Buttercream & Blooms
Hawke's Bay weddings pose a bit of a conundrum: coast or country? There is so much of both that it can often be hard to decide, so Nikky and Sam found a little off-the-beaten-track place where they could combine both. Clifton Cafe is authentically Kiwi. From the red corrugated iron through to the simple number-8 fencing wire separating the paddock from the wide expanse of the South Pacific Ocean. Under a home-made floral arch in front of their friends and family, this is Nikky and Sam's love story. We hope you enjoy it!
Nikky and Sam didn't want a fussy, over-the-top wedding. They wanted rustic, uncontrived simplicity and a focus on people, not props. Right on the edge of the ocean but somehow still heartland New Zealand, Clifton Cafe was a space Nikky remembered going to now and again as a treat with grandparents, so it was already imbued with very special memories. How to take those memories further was a challenge I took seriously, and so Nikky and I went off-roading in the most horrific weather to find a location that really showcased the Hawke's Bay landscape that as local girls we both adore. As so often happens, the forecast rain never arrived on the day and we were treated instead to the soft backlighting, blue skies and warm winds of a typical early-autumn Hawke's Bay day.
We'd talked a lot before the day about the importance of forgetting about the camera, being in the moment, focusing on each other, and turning down the 'noise' that dominates our busy lives and often a wedding day too. Nikky says making time to get away with me and Andrew and nobody else was one of the best decisions they made. 'Alone time' is something we always try and set up for our couples, even if it's just a few minutes at sunset to reflect on the day while we shoot with a long lens.