When Lucy wanted ‘something borrowed and something old’ for her summer wedding to Pete she didn’t have to look far. Originally designed for her grandmother, her dress was also worn by her mother and aunt.The accompanying wax orange blossom in her hair had even more family history: first worn in 1924 by her great-grandmother, Lucy was the eighth family bride to wear it.
The family’s bach at Lake Taupo was also an easy venue decision, with the lakeside setting suiting the reasonably small and casual style they wanted. Lucy and Pete also enjoyed the sense of family history: Lucy’s Aunt Philippa’s wedding was held on the same spot 16 years ago, and also catered by Ruth and Paul Pretty.
Lucy and Pete wanted to "create a contrast between the relaxed lakeside setting and a traditional but not too formal wedding. We wanted our wedding to be special and unique, and were delighted that everything worked out beautifully. The day was stress-free,” she smiled.
"The small Church of the Bright Morning Star was perfect for our 80 guests and the intimate family style we wanted. Our wedding photos were taken in the park by the church, with champagne and a beautiful wedding hamper from Ruth. Then we joined our families and guests on the lake beach.
"We wanted to showcase New Zealand as we had many of Pete’s family came over from Australia, so there were lots of discussions with Ruth about the menu.
"We settled on an entrée selection plate, choice of salmon or beef for the main and a tasting dessert plate.With long narrow tables to create an intimate atmosphere, shared platters would have taken-up table real estate, so all the food was individually plated, looking fantastic.
"We decided against a traditional wedding cake,instead going with Ruth’s gluten-free orange and almond cake. So many of the guests commented on how delicious it was”, she said.
The marquee was strikingly decorated with loose arrangements of ferns and passionfruit vines, on the tables, hanging from the ceiling and in bouquets. Lucy and Pete didn’t want formal flowers, and Sarah and Wayne from Horrobin & Hodge in Manukau "nailed it perfectly, we cannot speak too highly of them.”
"We wanted all the details to be as personal as possible,” Lucy added. "So small things like charcoal grey tablecloths with various shades of green napkins, the relaxed flowers, invitation and menu designs all helped personalise the day for us without fussing about having a specific theme.”
Just one last word about The Dress. Each bride had altered the dress slightly, and Lucy says she can imagine how terrifying it would have been for dressmaker Carmen Fortuin to cut into such an old and sentimental dress. "But her work was beautiful”, Lucy said.
"Fortunately, no request was too difficult for Ruth, Paul and Kylie. As event coordinator, Kylie was entirely professional and responded to all our questions immediately. It seemed she was just as invested in the planning as we were. I can only say that Paul’s organisational skills are incredible; he is the quintessential function manager!
"We knew they understood the logistics of hosting a wedding at a bach and would make the day stress free. And they did. Actually, we wish we could do it again!
Photo Credit: Simon Hoyle.