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A charming wedding at the family farm surrounded by idyllic countryside

Marenke and Rohan wed at the Grooms family farm in Puriri, in a ceremony that was interwoven with story and sentiment. The ceremony was meticulously crafted to harmonize with the natural beauty of the landscape. Set amidst the paddock, a handcrafted boardwalk adorned with bright wildflowers led to an altar embellished with moss laden branches. As night fell, guests were led to a reception held in a decommissioned Woolshed that exuded the essence of the surrounding countryside.

This stunning wedding was beautifully captured by Eilish Burt Photography.

How did you meet and how long have you been together?
Rohan and I met in Mount Maunganui, on New Years Eve 2019, while he was visiting from London. We had both moved to London back in 2016 and, surprisingly enough, despite both of us moving to London within days of each other we never crossed paths. It wasn’t until I had returned to New Zealand and had friends make the leap to the UK that our worlds started to collide.

Although our time together that summer was fleeting we both made an impact on each other, and we shared an unforgettable first date in the Coromandel. Rohan returned to London at the end of Jan, and our future together became murky. Then Covid-19 struck. Most people describe this time period as being full of uncertainty, but in the case of our relationship it was the opposite. The pandemic forced Rohan home to New Zealand, and we have been inseparable ever since.

Tell us a little bit about the proposal and your engagement?

Rohan and I got engaged in 2023. Non – traditionally we had both been involved in the ring designing process. My engagement ring included some very sentimental stones left to me by my grandmother when she passed, and we sourced the centre Alexandrite stone ourselves, as it’s one of my birthstones.

Our anniversary is in May and in 2023 we celebrated this milestone by recreating our first date – a trip around the Coromandel. Prior to leaving on this date Rohan took me to one of our favourite paddocks on his parent’s family farm in Puriri. To my surprise a gorgeous picnic under one of the trees had been set up. As we reached the picnic Rohan popped the question and delivered a glorious speech that included, in true Rohan fashion, some perfectly timed jokes.

Tell us about your wedding style. What influenced your planning for the day?

When I began wedding planning I had to reign in so many ideas. There are so many different styles that look gorgeous that I really had to breakdown why I liked them and how they would fit into my wedding. In the end, location became a huge factor in all planning. We got married on the farm and I wanted all our choices to make sense within the setting. With that being said I went for a bit of a classic style, with some lovely natural elements throughout.

Why did you choose your destination?
We got married on the family farm. The paddock we got married in was so special to us as it was also the paddock we got engaged in. The paddock is gorgeous, it’s encapsulated by trees and the grass is so tall you feel enveloped by nature. The Reception was held in a decommissioned wool shed, but it was also special as Rohan’s sister had also used it as apart of her wedding, so it was lovely to keep up the tradition.

What was your favourite detail from the day?

There are so many details to love, but I’m biased. I really loved the polaroid station we had. It’s such a simple concept, but everyone’s personalities show in the photos they take which makes it so fun to look back on. We also added some liquid courage to sweeten the deal, so it was take a shot and a snap. As a result we have quite a variety of snaps and we were able to get some fun shots once our photographer had left. I can’t wait to add these to Eilish’s photos and make our wedding album.

Did you have a stand out vendor from your Wedding?

We didn’t have too many vendors so it’s hard to pick just one, they were all fantastic! I loved my makeup artist, she was so lovely and brought the perfect vibes to the morning – her work was immaculate! I’ve also really got to shout out Eilish, she’s absolutely amazing. Eilish made her work seem easy and she slipped into the day so seamlessly – which is impressive as I was so unorganised in this area. Her eye for capturing special moments is impeccable, the images she shot are timeless and perfectly fit our style. I know I’ll be forever proud to display our wedding photos. We loved Eilish so much that we’ve booked her for more photos later this year.

What was your favourite moment from the day?

My favourite moment of the day was walking down the aisle, it’s the moment I want to relive forever. The setting was so incredibly gorgeous, but it took a lot to get there. Unfortunately, this paddock has a spring in behind it and we didn’t have a dry enough summer to completely dry it out. We had had so many back and fourths about what we were going to do here and had finally decided to move the ceremony to the drier paddock next door. The week of I viewed this back up paddock and was heartbroken, as it had nowhere near the charm of the original location. While I was tearing up about it Rohan had an extraordinary idea to lay scaffolding in the wet paddock to create a boardwalk. It worked so well that the ceremony and walking down the aisle will always be my favourite moment.

What does marriage mean to you?

For us, marriage isn’t just a milestone; it’s a celebration of everything we’ve achieved together and a promise of what’s to come. Our wedding is a symbol of our journey – shared triumphs, challenges overcome, and countless memories. Beyond our wedding day, marriage represents our shared dreams for the future. It fills us with anticipation for the journey ahead, as we look forward to the possibility of creating a family of our own.

Advice for other couples planning a wedding?

My advice to other couples planning a wedding is to take any help that gets offered to you. Planning a wedding can be full on, so don’t be afraid to talk things through with people because you never know how valuable their advice can be. Also, the more help or guidance you get from your loved ones the more connected you’ll feel to them on your big day – it’s so special.


PHOTOGRAPHY Eilish Burt Photography | VENUE Family Farm | CELEBRANT Millie Hamer | HIRE Pennisula Party Hire, Tauranga Party Hire | FLORA Flowers from Local growers and the Floral Hub. Arranged by family friends. | CATERING Drifters Pizza | HAIR Brides Mother | MAKEUP Jayde T Makeup, with Nari as her assistant | STATIONERY Designed by bride | CAKE The Flour Project | BRIDES GOWN, VEIL + NECKLACE By Brides Label – Marenke | GROOMS SUIT Bond + Co | RINGS Artisan Project | FRAGRANCE Maison Francis Kurkdjian, Baccarat Rouge 540 | SHOES Vintage Rene Caovilla | BRIDESMAIDS Ruby NZ and Shona Joy

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