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Malaghans Road
Arrowtown 9348
New Zealand

(0064) 21 542 983

Tailored, personal and memorable marriage ceremonies in Central Otago and Wellington. My commitment is to work with you to ensure that you have the wedding ceremony that reflects who you are and what is important to you on your special day.

I love to work with couples to create a personal experience.  I love spending whatever time is needed to get the details right for you:  whether it be helping you write the perfect ceremony, putting an antique cloth and a posy of flowers on the table to sign the register or giving you advice on locations and other people to assist you.

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Blog

Filtering by Tag: mountain weddings

Evoking a special memory of your "wedding day"

Catherine Fyfe

Just prior to Christmas I was waiting on the lawn by the stunning pond at Millbrook Resort for the guests to arrive for Kendra and Dan's wedding.  I noticed the most stunning "Wedding Day" rose growing in front of one of the historic buildings.   I only need to see a "Wedding Day" rose to be instantly transported back to our own wedding in 2000.  The morning of our wedding I went to the garden centre and purchased a "Wedding Day" rose.  "Wedding Day" is a big robust rambling rose:  not for a tiny space or the faint of heart!  It is however stunning and every year from the first bloom to when it is covered it is our wedding day again.  I was meeting with a couple last week who are marrying in March of this year.  We were standing in their garden talking about their plans for it and the additional planting they were doing that evening and they also mentioned that they are going to plant a "Wedding Day" rose.  So, it might be a picture, a place, using a gift, a flower or hearing a piece of music that evokes memories of your special day for you.

Millbrook Resort

Be flexible ….. the best laid plans might need to change quickly

Catherine Fyfe

No matter how well organized you are, sometimes things happen that mean you need to quickly change a detail of your ceremony.  It might be that the flowergirl or ringbearer decide that sitting at the wrong end of the aisle is where they will view events from; a member of the family who decides to change the seating plan several times over or wind or rain suddenly arrive if you are outside.  Plan that something unanticipated will happen!  But these things rarely ruin the memories that are created on your special day.  Sometimes they even add to it so plan not to be stressed by them.   

At a wedding early last spring, despite the dreadful weather forecast for snow from the day before and an indoor alternative at the ready, the day arrived sunny, if cold.  My couple were warmly dressed with fur coats over dresses and really wanted an outdoor wedding.  However, the south-west wind came up to almost gale-force at the last minute and was blowing straight down the lake to the desired location at the top of the Queentown Gardens.  It would have made it impossible to record the ceremony over the noise of the wind – to say nothing of it being rather tricky for me to control the ceremony wording and documentation, even in a sleeved book!  I also feared for my couple being able to survive the cold. So, after they arrived at the entrance to the gardens with their photographer, having received my messages in the car on the way, we made a quick decision to shift.  We ended up under the trees and it was an equally wonderful setting.  Sarah and Natasha were happy to go with our suggestions, relaxed and focused on what mattered (getting married!) and selected an option that provided the perfect backdrop for them.  The ceremony was relaxed, intimate and really special. 

So, plan that the unexpected will occur.  Have a Plan B for key elements if outside.

A table to write on, a mat to stand on ...

Catherine Fyfe

Today, some more essential tips for an outdoor wedding

Even if the wedding is outside, a table and chair are essential.  It isn’t easy to complete the documentation standing up!

I like to create a special table for the formalities.  Sometimes that means taking the table and a chair I provide to an unusual location!  We’ve had it by the lakefront, in a garden, up a mountain, by a pond and in a ruin in recent weeks! 

I also like to bring a mat with me to some locations.  Sometimes the ground underfoot is a bit damp or soft.  For a bride in high heels or in a light coloured dress, a mat of a colour that disappears into the background is a great option.  Easy to stand on and the dampness or mud doesn’t absorb up the fabric! 

Be flexible ….. the best laid plans might need to change quickly!

Today, thinking about an outdoor wedding

Julia Macfarlane

An outdoor wedding in Queenstown, Wellington or somewhere else?  Is this your dream?  

In July of 2015, Jerry and Kristie came from Queensland to marry in the garden of a home they rented out in the country.  They had a gorgeous archway created for the ceremony and it framed the backdrop of the mountains.  It was certainly a bit chilly – well, actually it was 2 degrees!  Orlando accompanied his Mum down the aisle and we had created together a ceremony that bought these three special people formally together.  It was an intimate and magical ceremony and I felt really privileged to marry them.

Things to think about when planning a ceremony outdoors:

Have a “Plan B”.  It doesn’t matter where you plan to marry and in what season, the weather won’t always co-operate.  So, an inside option that you can make the decision to move to quickly is absolutely essential.  Your reception venue might be a good alternative or an inside building at the outdoor venue.  That might be an old farm building or a building at a vineyard.  Regardless, you need to have the details for your “Plan B” as well organized as your first choice as seating, sound equipment, floral arrangements and lighting may to be shifted.

You’ll also have to have an easy to implement system of letting people know that the venue has changed.  A sudden and unanticipated weather event could mean you only have a short time to let people know.  Have phone numbers and email addresses all organised in advance and a “telephone tree” system.  You might not have time to ring everyone yourself!


It is hard to beat the scenery of Central Otago.  But what looks gorgeous in a photo can also be colder than you can imagine!  In winter (and spring and autumn!) a really warm jacket is essential, at least for before and after the ceremony.  Have gloves at the ready too.  Rose and Evan came to Queenstown in late 2014 from Northern Queensland and we celebrated their wedding on Coronet Peak.  Rose looked stunning in a long gown with a gorgeous warm, fur-trimmed jacket.  It was warm enough for Rose to take her jacket off for some photos but she would have looked equally stunning with her jacket throughout.  Because they wanted some photos up on the ski-field, Evan was in ski gear and Rose cleverly whipped on ski-pants and boots under her dress.  Their photographer Holly Wallace took an award-winning photo up on the mountain.  For guests, let them know what the temperature might be and also the dress code so that they can plan well in advance.  Appropriate footwear is also essential for your guest.  Ladies, balancing in high-heals in the snow or tussocks isn’t easy!

When you’re designing your ceremony, also think of seating requirements.  Whilst many of your guests will be happy to stand, some may be grateful for seating.  You need not provide it for everyone: just those who will really appreciate some seating.