The destination? Right in our own backyard, overlooking the picturesque Lake Wanaka.
With awe-inspiring scenery, three days of festivities and five custom outfits, Australian blogger Nicole Warne of Gary Pepper Girl married her photographer husband Luke Shadbolt in suitably Instagram-worthy fashion, right on our doorstep at Lake Wanaka.
Nicole and Luke initially met “through mutual friends at a Christmas party” – fast forward eight years and a lot of travel together (which has been oh-so-perfectly documented on her blog and Instagram account) to Luke proposing amidst cherry blossom season in Tokyo.
Tokyo, 2015 🌸 This was the day we got engaged (and one of the brief moments I had red hair). @lukeshadbolt proposed on a tiny blue boat as cherry blossoms were softly falling around us from the Sakura trees lining this beautiful lake. Luke’s always been romantic but this proposal exceeded anything I could have ever imagined. We had been together for 8 years at the time and truthfully I didn’t see it coming at all; I thought I was going to fall out of the boat from shock. The Iphone quality is terrible but this video was taken moments after Luke proposed to help remind me of one of the most cherished moments of my life. I’ll remember April 1st forever. #LOVEBOLT
Recapping the wedding details to Vogue.com, Nicole told the publication she and Luke decided they “wanted a destination close enough for all of our friends and family… So we felt like New Zealand was the closest place geographically that suited our desire for wild nature, mountains, lakes, fjords and glaciers.” In essence, it was the perfect location for the jet-setting couple to start a new chapter in their relationship.
Selecting Rippon Hall on Lake Wanaka as the location for their wedding, the couple featured natural elements as a part of the decor. Perfectly complementing the stunning views were an abundance of flowers and fairy lights. Fortunately the weather was fine on the big day allowing for the ceremony to take place outside overlooking the lake, creating a range of scenic wedding photos. And the awe-inspiring views didn’t stop there, with the bridal party taking a helicopter to Roy’s Peak for the remainder of their pictures.
When it came to choosing her bridal outfits, Nicole selected five custom ensembles to carry her in style throughout the three-day celebration. “I always knew I wanted to wear a mix of international and Australian designers but nothing too bridal,” Nicole told Vogue.
To the ceremony, the blogger wore a beautiful custom Valentino Haute Couture gown with a low V-neckline revealing a simple yet elegant crop top. Adding detail and a touch of femininity to the dress was carefully placed silk petal embroidered flowers with crystals.
The reception saw the bride change into a custom strapless Oscar de la Renta gown with cascading ruffles. And to take her dancing through the night, Nicole donned a white satin Dion Lee dress with pleats and cut-out detailing. Her two other outfits included a pair of custom pants and top by Maticevski to the welcome drinks the day before the wedding and a custom Michael Lo Sordo dress to the recovery brunch the day after.
To further add to the bride’s glitz and glamour, Nicole teamed her bridal outfits with a pair of dainty Cartier diamond studs and a matching necklace and bracelet which she hopes to give to her children one day.
The groom wore a luxurious custom velvet tuxedo in an emerald green hue with black satin lapels, while the bridesmaids all wore differing custom Dion Lee dresses in a rich gold satin.
Words: Ella Francis.
Photos: c/o Vogue.com.
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