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25 March 4, 2015 Mahurangi Matters weddingfeature www.ascensionwine.co.nz 480 Matakana Rd Matakana 09 422 9601 Where forever begins Wedding Venue gettinghitched FEATURE Modern twists update tried and true wedding traditions Ascension Wine Estate functions and marketing manager Carlie Blanchett Burton shares her Top 10 wedding trends for 2015: Bling – from diamante dress embellishments and headpieces to diamond placecard holders, bling is one of the hottest trends for weddings this season. Blooms and greenery – large billowing blooms such as tea roses, hydrangeas and peonies are in style this year with an abundance of fresh greenery. Art deco – art deco design elements are still a strong wedding trend for cakes, dress and invitations. Bridal gowns have adapted the silhouettes of the 1930s with cap sleeves, collars and off-the-shoulder designs hitting the runways. Strong colour accents – moving on from the pastels that have been in for the last couple of years, colour accents have become a bit brighter with colours like coral, turquoise, teal and navy taking centre stage. Metallics – metallics also have an old world feel this summer with copper, bronze and brass playing a starring role. Laser cut designs – intricate laser cut designs are the biggest thing in wedding invitations at the moment. Laser cut designs are also being used for custom bunting, placecards and favour boxes and can be custom-made to match your theme. Signature drinks – Signature drinks have become very popular for the canapés hour with brides choosing custom mocktails, sangria and punch over the traditional glass of bubbles. Relaxed food options – the approach is more relaxed for wedding food as well with platters and buffets proving more popular than canapés and a set menu. Food trucks are also a popular option for canapés time. Fingerprint art – couples are choosing to have images such as trees or hot air balloons where everyone can add their fingerprint instead of the traditional guest book. Custom-made signage – from glittery Mr and Mrs signs to large illuminated text saying ‘love’ or ‘this is how forever begins’, custom- made cut-out signage with lighting is giving fairy lights a run for their money this year. While many wedding traditions are perennial, there is always scope to add personal touches that reflect the bride and groom’s individual tastes and values. Most brides follow the custom of donning ‘something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue’, the garter has become a reception show stopper and tossing the bouquet remains part of the fun. But when it comes to the wedding dress and the outfits for the bridal party, the flowers, the cake and the reception theme, the rules go out the window. Technology has also been harnessed in a big way by brides and wedding planners, from websites like nzweddingplanner.co.nz to the use of drones and GoPro cameras by photographers to add something special to the wedding day album. Signage is a cool way to add some pep to the celebrations. Laser cut invitations are a popular trend.

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  • 25 March 4, 2015 Mahurangi Matters weddingfeature

    www.ascensionwine.co.nz 480 Matakana Rd Matakana 09 422 9601

    Where forever begins

    Wedding Venue

    gettinghitched FEATUREModern twists update tried and true wedding traditions

    Ascension Wine Estate functions and marketing manager Carlie Blanchett Burton shares her Top 10 wedding trends for 2015:Bling from diamante dress embellishments and headpieces to diamond placecard holders, bling is one of the hottest trends for weddings this season.Blooms and greenery large billowing blooms such as tea roses, hydrangeas and peonies are in style this year with an abundance of fresh greenery.Art deco art deco design elements are still a strong wedding trend for cakes, dress and invitations. Bridal gowns have adapted the silhouettes of the 1930s with cap sleeves, collars and off-the-shoulder designs hitting the runways.Strong colour accents moving on from the pastels that have been in for the last couple of years, colour accents have become a bit brighter with colours like coral, turquoise, teal and navy taking centre stage. Metallics metallics also have an old world feel this summer with copper, bronze and brass playing a starring role.Laser cut designs intricate

    laser cut designs are the biggest thing in wedding invitations at the moment. Laser cut designs are also being used for custom bunting, placecards and favour boxes and can be custom-made to match your theme.Signature drinks Signature drinks have become very popular for the canaps hour with brides choosing custom mocktails, sangria and punch over the traditional glass of bubbles.Relaxed food options the approach is more relaxed for wedding food as well with platters and buffets proving more popular than canaps and a set menu. Food trucks are also a popular option for canaps time.Fingerprint art couples are choosing to have images such as trees or hot air balloons where everyone can add their fingerprint instead of the traditional guest book.Custom-made signage from glittery Mr and Mrs signs to large illuminated text saying love or this is how forever begins, custom-made cut-out signage with lighting is giving fairy lights a run for their money this year.

    While many wedding traditions are perennial, there is always scope to add personal touches that reflect the bride and grooms individual tastes and values.Most brides follow the custom of donning something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue, the garter has become a reception show stopper and tossing the bouquet remains part of the fun.But when it comes to the wedding dress and the outfits for the bridal party, the flowers, the cake and the reception theme, the rules go out the window.Technology has also been harnessed in a big way by brides and wedding planners, from websites like

    nzweddingplanner.co.nz to the use of drones and GoPro cameras by photographers to add something special to the wedding day album.

    Signage is a cool way to add some pep to the celebrations.

    Laser cut invitations are a popular trend.

  • 26 Mahurangi Matters March 4, 2015 weddingfeature

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    Timing vital for speechesWedding speeches can be nerve-wracking, not only for speakers, but also for bridal couples and their guests, as a single wayward speaker can quickly turn the most carefully planned event into an embarrassing sideshow.Appointing a confident Master of Ceremonies is one way to keep speakers and timetables on track.Warkworth Toastmasters president Steve Reynolds has MCd numerous weddings and says it pays for couples to clearly state how they want speeches handled, whether restricting them to a few pre-selected individuals, or offering the opportunity to anyone who has something to say.If youre going to be giving a speech theres no need to feel nervous because no-one knows what youre going to say so you cant get it wrong, Steve says. But, the major no-no is not knowing when to stop.Steve suggests that a reasonable speech length is around three minutes or up to five, depending how many will be delivered. Practise is always good. As long as youve got an opening and closing worked out, you can usually fill in the middle successfully. Either a joke, or something from the heart to the bride and groom, are both good options for an effective ending.Its easier and more interesting to talk about what you know of the couple

    yourself, rather than relaying hearsay, and its important to keep it seemly and not harp on about either of the couples previous relationships, he says.Theres nothing wrong with a little bit of innuendo as long as its appropriate. If you think you can tell it to your mother, its probably okay. Steve suggests cue cards with headers are generally better than screeds of notes, which are off-putting to audiences and can make you look down too much as you speak.If using a microphone, hold it close to your mouth rather than at chest level and if not, address people at the back of the room.Letting your eyes rest on individuals for a few moments is an effective way to include the audience, but glancing around too rapidly can be a distraction, sending too many messages to your brain.If you dont have a relative thats keen or capable to take on the MC role, check with friends for recommendations, or contact any toastmaster for advice.

  • 27 March 4, 2015 Mahurangi Matters weddingfeature

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    Timing vital for speeches Property issues overlooked

    Your wedding day should be the best day of your life; it is a public declaration of your commitment and love for one another and marks the beginning of a new journey and (for many) the end of hours of organisation and planning.The big day has finally arrived! However, there is one area of organisation and planning which is often ignored by the blushing bride and gorgeous groom and that is the implications of marriage in terms of their property rights and (in the case of second relationships) their children.Most people think they know what the Property (Relationships) Act (the Act) says, but many fail to understand the extent of the obligations conferred upon them under the legislation. For example, many dont realise that the Act

    applies on death as well as separation. Others dont realise that estates can sue the survivor so that the children of the deceased can inherit the half that their parent would have inherited had they not passed away.Some dont think that they now have to consider making provision for step-children. A few dont realise that the home they live in will be divided 50:50 regardless of who owns it, pays for it, does the maintenance on it etcetera. Finally, a number of people dont realise that a wedding revokes your existing Will. So, as part of the organisation and planning for the wedding, add to your list a phone call to your lawyer so that they can make sure all those niggly legal matters are sorted and you can live happily ever after.

    By Stephanie paxton-penman paxton-penman et al

    Marriage in declineJust under 20,000 marriages were registered to NZ residents in 2013 and of these, 209 were same-sex marriages. There were 13,312 first marriages, 5825 remarriages, and 100 couples (both same-sex and opposite-sex) who transferred their civil union to a marriage. Around two in five same-sex marriages involved overseas couples, compared with one in nine for opposite-sex marriages. A total of 187 civil unions were registered to NZ residents of these, 121 were same-sex unions 46 civil unions were registered to overseas residents and 40 couples dissolved their civil union.

    Achy breaky heart riseAnalysis of divorce statistics by year of marriage shows that just over one-third (35 per cent) of New Zealanders who married in 1988 had divorced before their silver wedding anniversary (25 years). This compares with 32 per cent for those who married in 1978, and 26 per cent for those who married in 1968. Source, Statistics NZ

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  • 28 Mahurangi Matters March 4, 2015 weddingfeature

    Smoothly run receptions need careful planningEntertaining guests after a wedding ceremony is traditional in most societies and can last anywhere from half-an-hour to many hours or even days.But whether a couple is planning a banquet or a barbecue for their guests, there are some common elements to consider such as budget and numbers attending, food preferences and dietary requirements, and whether or not children are included amongst the guests.Experience has taught Plume Restaurant head chef Paul van der Molen to expect the unexpected when it comes to catering for a wedding.Good communication between the couple and the kitchen is crucial if things are to run smoothly on the big day.One of the biggest challenges in recent years has been the increasing number of guests with food allergies, he says. These can range from common wheat and nut allergies to an intolerance for dairy, seeds and eggs. We even had a guest recently who couldnt eat onions.If we know ahead of time, then its not a problem. But finding out at the last minute that a guest couldnt eat onions, which are in so many dishes, was difficult.Event catering is nothing new for Paul. He has worked on major events for up to 2500, as well as on cruise ships where the kitchens would serve 54,000 meals a week. But he says he enjoys weddings because they are happy occasions, where people come along to have fun and enjoy themselves.The hospitality industry, by definition,

    implies a desire to look after people and its nice for an occasion as special as a wedding to spend a little more time on the meals and presentation.Its one of the reasons he prefers an a la carte menu to a buffet.Buffets can look stunning at the start, but the presentation is not usually so good towards the end.It is normal on wedding invitations to ask guests if they have a special food requirement but unfortunately, not all

    guests remember to note it down in their acceptance.We do our best to meet everyones expectations but unusual last-minute requests can hold up proceedings for everyone.There is a lot to think about when deciding what to serve at a wedding and while price is a factor, there can be other considerations such whether or not children will be at the reception, ethnic preferences and the timing of when courses should be served around

    speeches. It is also important to make sure there is a wet weather option if it is an outside reception.While the number of courses is an individual decision, Paul tries to ensure that guests are well-satisfied, particularly if they are drinking. He says the style of food should match the venue.If you want home style food, then perhaps a fine dining restaurant is not the appropriate venue. Its really important that the couple feel completely confident that the venue they choose can meet their expectations.

    Plume Restaurant head chef Paul van der Molen says theres a lot to consider when planning a wedding reception so its important to set-up good lines of communication between the reception venue and the couple.

    TipDont assume plated dinners are pricier. Often they arent because the caterer knows exactly how much food to order and prepare, whereas buffets have to accommodate multiple trippers.

    A new trend in wedding cakes is to forego the sweet option and replace it with tiers of cheese wheels.

  • 29 March 4, 2015 Mahurangi Matters weddingfeature John PhillisMarriage Celebrant

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    John PhillisMarriage Celebrant | JP

    Experienced, in all indoor and outdoor ceremonies and happy to assist with your planning.

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    Classic roses are still number one with brides, but old-fashioned blooms are making a comeback.

    Dont penny-pinch on bloomsAlthough the bridal bouquet takes centre stage in many a wedding photo, there are other ways in which flowers dress up a wedding and provide a touch of romance.These include arrangements at the reception and decorations at the venue, whether this is a church or under a canopy at the beach.Many florists hire vases for reception tables perhaps glass cylinders filled with tall calla lilies or fishbowl vases with tulips wound around inside.A grand arrangement can provide a sense of occasion at the entrance to a reception or church lobby.Decorating a church generally involves placing flowers along altar rails and garlands on the ends of each pew. A simple canopy erected for a service at the

    beach might have flowers wound up a central pole or hung from each corner.Roses never go out of fashion, but several old-fashioned blooms such as hydrangeas and dahlias are also popular for weddings.As a change from the traditional ivory or white, there are calla lilies or gerberas in hot colours and casual style bouquets for outdoor weddings may feature ferns and grasses.Beautifully made silk flowers never go out of fashion and can be used in combination with fresh blooms.There are flowers for every budget, but couples should bear in mind that flowers appear in their photos and should not be a last-minute, hasty choice. Better to buy the flowers you truly love than be sorry afterwards.

    Toting up the costThe average Kiwi wedding costs around $30,000, which may seem high until you consider the cost in other countries. For instance, in Australia most couples shell out around $56,000 and in the UK its only marginally less at $50,600. In Japan and Hong Kong, couples expect to pay between $40,000 and $45,000 for their big day, while in the United States the average wedding costs $33,500.

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  • 30 Mahurangi Matters March 4, 2015 weddingfeature

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    Music is the food of love, so what you choose should get everyone relaxed and enjoying the romantic flavour of the day. That is not to say your favourite hip hop, techno or punk tunes cannot be used on the dance floor, but this approach will keep elderly relatives firmly in their seats. At the other extreme, too much Barry Manilow or piano accordion music sends all the young ones home.A broad selection of music put together on an ipod is a popular option, allowing couples to make up their own play list.Bands that specialise in functions will generally offer input on the song list, which is likely to be cover

    versions. It is worth asking whether the band will learn a particular song just for you, if you have a romantic favourite.DJs cater to the couples taste, offering selections of different genres, or eras such as 70s or 80s. They can also read the mood and adjust songs to keep guests happy. If the bride or groom has a strong singing voice, but is shy of singing in public, it is even possible to record a song to a backing track at a studio to be played as a surprise on the day.According to Spotify, which looked at thousands of wedding-themed playlists, the 10 most popular first dance songs are:

    A pretty beaded bolero is ideal for a wedding in cooler months.

    hitting the right note

    Keeping up with wedding gown trends can be a challenging task, as a myriad of commentators offer sometimes conflicting views, but by making yourself the top selection criteria you can soon identify the features that will be best for you.Trawling the many wedding websites reveals a few key elements on which most pundits agree, including illusion necklines, a preference for tulle and organza, and plenty of texture through fabric, layering and adornment.Illusion necklines give a strapless look, while sheer fabric or lace subtly veils skin that would otherwise be exposed. Boleros or wedding jackets, in varying styles and fabrics depending on your dress and the climate, are also part of an increasing cover up, playing both a practical and aesthetic role.Detailed and textured corsets are another notable trend, while the

    colour palette has extended from white to encompass ivory, blush, apricot, lavender and a few bolder tones. Alternatively, you can try splashes of colour on a traditional white wedding

    dress through trims, belts, sashes, floral embellishments and bows, considering your own skin tones first and of course, coordinating with your bridesmaids colours. Pick and choose

    what you like to inspire your vision, but dont let trends entirely dictate your style, focus on your body shape to accentuate the positive and wear a gown that looks and feels great. A contour-hugging sheath or mermaid style (that flares at or below the knee) is not for everyone, but there are plenty of kinder cuts to choose from like the traditional A-Line gown that fits the torso and flares at the waist. The full-skirted ballgown style emphasises a waist while masking hips and thighs, while an Empire line traditionally drops from below the bust line in a long loose skirt that helps disguise the stomach area.Take time to try different styles in the presence of a friend whose feedback you trust and consider taking your ideas to a dressmaker to get a unique and tailored look.

    Body shape best guide for choosing right bridal gown

    Vintage gowns are the ideal choice for any bride who is in to boho-chic.

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  • 31 March 4, 2015 Mahurangi Matters weddingfeature

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    Every season holds its own inspiration including winter, which is for sparkly gold, ivory and decadent desserts.

    Before you battle the crowds to find a venue and suppliers for your summer wedding, why not spare a thought for winter when wily wedding planners can stretch your dollar further, while still maximising the romance of the day.There are big savings to be made and more choice to be had by targeting venues and suppliers, from caterers to photographers, in their off season and you may be able to book them at much shorter notice than you think.Some popular local venues offer themselves for winter weddings (between April 1 and October 31) at as little as half the regular rate, with a range of added incentives.Travelling guests will find their accommodation is cheaper and less crowded too.Fireside ceremonies have their own magic and fur throws and shawls add a dramatic layer to bridal couture thats equally fitting in a horse-drawn carriage, vintage car or stretch limo. Meanwhile, men will feel more comfortable suiting up for the occasion.Consider the pleasure of mulled wine,

    hot chocolate shots, liqueurs or special coffees as warming welcomes for wedding guests. Add soup or other traditional winter fare to the menu.Be liberal with floating or scented candles, which can be readily colour-matched to any dcor.Embrace rich autumn colours and umbrellas as great photo props (remember, even summer weddings cant be assured of a dry day), but have some glamourous inside locations in mind as well, a grand staircase, ballroom, covered verandah or stone or timber fireside all have their charm.If you have your ceremony and reception at the same venue, you and your guests wont have to worry about braving the weather.Ice sculptures, crystal and even snow globes, all make perfect sense at a winter event. Perhaps put your savings towards a tropical getaway for your honeymoon, or follow through with a winter escape that will demand plenty of cuddling up and romantic fireside moments.

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