For Libby and Steve, their wedding was not about the finest frocks and most lavish of decor. “We’re a chill and relaxed couple so we also wanted a very chill and relaxing day without any of our friends or family having to fuss for us” explains Libby. The pair opted for a beautiful country garden wedding venue, who did all of the work. “All we did was just show up and get married.”
And with the spectacular New Zealand countryside as their backdrop, complete with olive groves they did just that. Minimal styling “We were inspired by the uniqueness and beauty of the location so we went for a natural, earthy look and feel; white, sage green and a neutral colour palette,” let the love story do all the talking, and the result was romantic, natural and beautifully intimate, as evidenced by the beautiful imagery by August & Vine.
It was not love at first sight for the pair, who’s love story was an admitted (by Libby!) slow burn after beginning as a friendship. “We began dating in May 2018 – went on hikes, movie dates, and food trips. Steve made me laugh in his dorky ways and made me happy as we went on our little adventures. Then we went on separate holidays that July – Steve in Japan, me in US and Canada. That’s when I realised I wanted to be with Steve. When we got back to Wellington, we became official. I’ll never forget the first time he said ‘I love you’. That’s when I knew he was someone special.”
A road trip the perfect time for Steve to ask Libby to marry him. “We were on a week’s South Island road trip on New Year 2021. Our first stop was in Lake Tekapo – such a beautiful place. Around sunset on our second day, he decided to take me to a lovely spot he found by the lake. I was in a mood as I was already looking forward to having dinner. He told me, “I just need to show you something. Trust me, it will be worth it.” When we got to his quiet private spot, he knelt on one knee and asked.”
The couple chose the beautiful garden venue of Olivio~nor for their wedding, not only making the most of the space but of the venue’s in-house wedding planning package. Says Libby “When we were visiting wedding venues in Martinborough, we immediately fell in love with Olivio~nor. Olivio~nor is filled with beautiful olive groves and stunning views of the Tararua ranges. With an Italian-style villa and a huge garden and courtyard, you almost feel like you are miles away from Wellington and somewhere in Italy. This is somewhere we imagine where we could be on our wedding day.
We loved not having to plan much at all! We chose an intimate pop-up wedding package for 20 guests with Olivio~nor. This took all of the hassle and much of the expense out of what can easily become an overwhelming time. Sheryl styled the flowers and classy decors in the venue which were stunningly gorgeous and inspired by my Pinterest board. I only met my main vendors once in one venue which was very efficient for us. Most of the catch-ups also just happened over the phone.”
“I was walked in by my brother-in-law (Terence), my sister (Paola) and my nephew (Beauden)” tells Libby of her walk down the aisle to “The Thief” by Brooke Fraser. “I couldn’t forget the moment when I was walking down the aisle – I was trying to hold back tears seeing my friends and my groom waiting for me.”
The ceremony was as chilled out as the rest of the day, officiated by Lisa Schermers. “Our favourite detail of the day is having a warm autumn day! In fact, the week leading up to it was just entirely pleasant. We were thankful for that. The celebrant (Lisa) helped us create a ceremony that was very personal and reflected us as a couple.
Steve’s very favourite moment of the day? “I remember us, standing in front of our family and friends, exchanging vows. I wouldn’t forget the beautiful location, the intimate time with family and friends and of course, my beautiful bride.”
“My wedding dress had a minimalistic style, A-line, open back and deep v-neck,” tells Libby of the dreamt gown she found at SheSaidYesDress (Ona Skazala Da). I took the risk of buying online and I don’t have any regrets about purchasing it from SheSaidYesDress on Etsy! I honestly could not have asked for a better experience. Kseniya was responsive to my questions and helpful when giving instructions about taking measurements. My dress arrived on time and it was a perfect fit. I received a lot of compliments about my dress. I was so glad I had found the perfect dress to marry my man.”
In keeping with the neutral colour palette, Steve wore an oat-coloured linen suit from Hallenstein Brothers.
Even the couple’s photo session was relaxed “We popped away with our photographer in the olive grove while our music was playing and our guests mingled. The photographer helped us ease into our photoshoot on the wedding day. We received the photos sooner than I expected and they were amazing!”
“We had so many special touches. Getting married in front of the big tree on the grounds, elegant decor, green foliage, delicious canapés, plus white pews for our guests. We also used a live streaming service for my parents and relatives abroad so they wouldn’t miss out. We also chose our songs in our Spotify wedding playlist.”
Congratulations to you both! Thank you for sharing your beautiful wedding day story with us. Thank you also to August & Vine for sharing today’s images.