Real Weddings

Jemma and Alvaro

Photography by Samantha Donaldson


— Can you tell us about the proposal?

"Every month Alvaro and I take turns organizing a date. His turn was on a Saturday. His only instructions for me were to look "nice".

We went to the Stardome and watched the Matariki presentation, and then he said we were going for lunch at the Bistro in Cornwall Park.

As we walked to the Bistro, it began drizzling, so I insisted he put up the umbrella. He refused and said it should just go on the ground.

Utterly confused, I went to pick it up as he went to get down on the ground. I insisted that his pants would get wet… and then he pulled out a little black box. I shut up right away.

He asked me to Marry him. Well, actually, he totally fumbled his words, and the box was backwards… so I blurted out, "just ask me the question!" which he then did."

— What do you consider the best wedding investment you made?

"We gave each of our guests a black-and-white photo of them, with one of us, as their place-setting identifier. It was pretty special to watch each guest find their picture and share stories of the moment it was captured with their table."

Who was your outstanding wedding vendor?

"Samara Paxton - @facebysamara on Instagram. Samara filled in as my hairdresser cancelled the day before. She showed up and completely knocked it out of the park - my bridal hair was better than I could have imagined. She was super friendly, calm and totally understood the look I asked for and executed it brilliantly!"

What is your #1 piece of wedding advice to couples planning their big day?

"The day goes so fast and is such a whirlwind. Schedule private moments so the two of you can step back and soak it all in. We did this straight after the ceremony. We walked down the aisle and went and sat in the chalet onsite for a glass of champagne and a moment alone."

—Words by Jemma x


Thanks to all the contributing vendors:

Photography: Samantha Donaldson
Venue: Bridgewater Country Estate
Florist: Floral Essence
Celebrant: Jane King
Wedding Dress: Felicitys Bridal
Makeup: Rebekah Banks
Hair: Samara Paxton - Face by Samara