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Deep in the heart of Martinborough, enveloped in a cozy, romantic aura, Charlotte and Ryan wed. Moody weather enriched their day with a velvety feel, the transitions of nature creating ethereal nuptials and high contrast memories.

Charlotte’s dress was modern with a vintage twist. A high neckline with an opaque V-neck, diamond shaped open back and adorned long sleeves, all of which took on an art-deco feel in the opulent lines of beading.

Moving from the ceremonial Burnside Church, the reception was nestled inside the cosy winehouse of Poppies Vineyard; intimate and humble amongst the soft white drapes, exposed beams and low light. We love the black tie style, complete with wintery comforts, espresso Martinis and a night of dancing; a smouldering atmosphere of wild hearts.

Heartfully captured by David Le Photography.

How did you meet and how long have you been together?

We have been together for 6 years. We met after a day at the Christchurch races in 2014. Earlier in the day a mutual friend mentioned Ryan in passing, telling Charlotte he was a great guy and asking if she was looking to date anyone (clearly realising we would be a great match!). We then all ended up at the same bar for the evening and Ryan came over to introduce himself.

How would you describe each other?

Charlotte – I would describe Ryan as driven, ambitious, successful and an all-around great guy to everyone he meets. Ryan – I would describe Charlotte as beautiful, intelligent and determined, with a kind soul.

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

Ryan proposed in Martinborough over a fireside winter lunch at Tirohana Estate. He had been quietly brushing off engagement talk for some time so as to keep things a huge surprise, and it definitely was! We started planning our wedding relatively quickly and settled on a date the following August.

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

One of the first things we decided on was a winter wedding! We thought it would be nice to avoid the rush for dates by choosing something a bit more off-season. We also loved the idea of something indoors, cosy and intimate, with visions of fireplaces, candlelight, and delicious warming food. We also figured that if we planned an indoor wedding, the weather wouldn’t matter as much either way (and we almost hoped for an grey moody day to help set a cosy atmosphere – which ended up being exactly what happened on the day).

Why did you choose your destination?

We quickly decided on Martinborough because it is one of our favourite places to visit, and so beautiful and relaxing. We live in Christchurch but Ryan is from Masterton, so we often spend time in Martinborough when visiting his family. We had visited Poppies on a few occasions and felt like it would be the perfect place to spend a cosy winter evening for our reception, and then decided to have the ceremony at the magical little Burnside church.

What was your favourite moment from the day?

There are almost too many to think of! The whole day was truly better than we could have imagined, and we had a beautiful couple of days in Martinborough before the wedding too, with all of our friends and family staying close by and celebrating together. Everything was super relaxed and fun, including espresso martinis with our bridal party during our bridal photos. Having all of our closest people in one room was really special and we felt so lucky to have so much love around us.

What does marriage mean to you?

Although nothing has technically changed in our relationship since being married, it still feels like a different kind of commitment to each other. We support each other above anything else and love that our amazing families have been joined together.

Who were your standout vendors?

All of them! We feel so grateful to have found everyone that we worked with on the day and in the lead up. Shayne from Poppies was incredible and ensured everything ran so smoothly, and he was always full of energy and great ideas for things we might not have thought of ourselves. David and Ben, our photography/videography duo, made things so much fun and relaxed (not to mention being so incredibly talented). We absolutely love having our photos and video to look back on.

Advice for other couples planning a wedding?

Although it’s a super important day and obviously each to their own, we would say not to over-think it. Go with what feels right for you, and sometimes you don’t need to over- complicate it by getting 8 different quotes for flowers and cakes. We also read somewhere that it’s a good idea to pick a handful of the most important things to focus on budget-wise, which we found super helpful – the most important things to us were a beautiful venue with great food (and wine!) for our guests to enjoy, beautiful photos and video to look back on, and a great dress/suit which we each felt a million dollars in.

Do you have a favourite quote or piece of your vows you would like to share?

“Together with each other’s support, trust and love I am excited to see all the amazing things we can achieve”


Photographer: David Le Photography | Videographer: Sink Or Surface | Florist: Yvette Edwards | Ceremony Venue: Burnside Church | Reception Venue: Poppies Martinborough | Bridal Gown: Karen Willis Holmes from Paperswan Bride | Bridal Shoes: Jo Mercer | Bridesmaids Dresses: Shona Joy | Rings: Naveya & Sloane | Hair Stylist: Amy McLennan | Groom’s Suit: Working Style | Cake: Sweet Bakery | Entertainment: DJ via Hype Entertainment

We are excited to have David Le Photography as part of our exclusive Wild Hearts Vendor Collection. Check out more of David’s stunning photography here and follow him on Instagram here.

Words by Isabelle McKay.

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