Tahlia + Kell | Black Walnut Venue Wedding

Summer 2019

The kindest couple who picked a venue which had sentimental value in it’s location and was close to their hearts; Tahlia got ready at the venue, and post ceremony, the guests got to enjoy their stunning surroundings while the newly weds had their photos amongst the venues beautiful natural backdrops. Tahlia planned the day herself, using a range of vendors to make their wedding day dreams come true. This wedding really is the epitome of simple beauty.

In Tahlia’s words, their wedding style was “simple and ‘less is more’. I was absolutely terrified of it being “too muchy muchy” if you know what I mean. Both the ceremony and reception area are already so beautiful that I didn’t want to over complicate things by adding lots of extra decorations or flowers. We stuck to black and white for table settings and the natural scenery of the Black Walnut trees and the feeling of being amongst nature felt and looked so beautiful in its self I am so glad I axed my plans for an archway covered in flowers. The wooden bench seats and a few petals for the aisle were all we had in the end. As for the reception and table settings we went with simple black and white and it was perfect. I gave my florist/family friend free reign for the flowers so I didn’t really know what we were getting until the day but SHE NAILED IT”.

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The Proposal

Kell was about to head away on a tour of UK/Europe for Rugby so I wasn’t suspicious at all when she suggested we grab a pizza from a new place at the Mount we had both been wanting to try and take a picnic blanket to Pilot Bay and enjoy it their together. Me being me (I love a chat) Kelly was apparently struggling to find the right moment so she suggested we take a walk along the main beach and up a small track which leads to a little outlook over the water. Kelly decided this was the perfect place to pop the question so as I was finishing up snapchatting the lovely view to friends I turned around and she said “I’m nervous”. As soon as I heard that I knew what was coming. She got down one knee and asked “Will you marry me?”. Of course I said YES!

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Where did you purchase your dress & accessories from?

My dress was by Kenny and Harlow (Megs Tailoring) in Auckland. It was called ‘the April Gown’ and April is my birth month so I kind of felt like it was meant to be. I kept it simple with accessories. All of the bridesmaids and I wore earrings by the amazing Zoe Alexandria (Sydney based). Other than that I only wore my engagement ring and a ring which was gifted to my late grandmother by my grandfather for her 21st. Shoes are Mi Piaci.

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We saved & splurged on...

We saved on wedding cars! Me and my 4 bridesmaids got ready at the venue in the morning where we also did ‘first look’ photos before the ceremony so because Kelly and her girls arrived in a van before the guests there was no need for a fancy car for anyone to arrive in. The venue does however have a really funky old truck which we took full advantage of for more photos later on. We went super cheap on invitations too. I didn’t want to spend a whole lot of money on something that would eventually end up in the bin.

The splurging wasn’t really ‘we’ as such, but ‘I’ splurged on my dress haha. I had told myself “Okay Tahlia three thousand will be plenty” ..I ended up spending closer to five thousand.

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What were the highlights on the day?

There are so many! One of our highlights would have to be Kelly’s team and former team mates doing a Haka for us after the speeches. I’ve seen it before but my goodness its so special when you’re on the receiving end. Absolutely unforgettable. The speeches were fantastic too. Hearing everybody talk about how obvious it is that we make each other so happy was really nice.

Do you have any tips for other engaged couples?

Just don’t rush it. We had a long engagement and I was really annoyed about that at first because two years seemed like FOREVER but what a blessing that turned out to be! Not only does it give you more time to save (even with our parents contributing generously we still needed more) but it gives you enough time to book all of the vendors you’ve been dreaming of using to make your day absolutely perfect and for a little ball of stress like me it was great to have the extra time but no matter what it sneaks up on you! The time really does fly.

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Tahlia & Kell’s Vendors

Ceremony + Reception venue: The Black Walnut Venue

Photographer: Rambo Estrada

Hire: Love Club Hire, Flying Pig Hire Co, LL Furniture, The White Wedding Club (bits and pieces from all). 

Entertainment: Josh Pow Music/Pow Wow

Celebrant: Mikayla Zandstra (Lets Say I Do)

Caterer: Good Things Kitchen

Florist: Vivien Abel

Cake: Spongedrop Cakery

Hair: Hair by Tui & Donna Creative Stylist

Makeup: Ashlee Hastings Makeup and Holly Matthews Makeup

Stationery: VistaPrint and Pureprint Tauranga

Dress: Megs Tailoring (Kenny and Harlow)

Accessories: Zoe Alexandria

Rings: Michael Hill Jeweller