Win your ring!

Whether you have Celtic roots or (k)not, the intricate woven designs from the Celtic tradition are a beautiful, visual way to signify your engagement or marriage.

The Celtic Tui is a New Zealand based online jewellery store that offers a beautiful, unique range of Celtic jewellery including engagement rings, wedding rings for both men and women, eternity rings, Claddagh rings and Celtic pendants (including Celtic knot work and Celtic cross pendants).

Inspiration for the Celtic Tui’s range is drawn from the interlacing knot work from the treasured book of Kells.

Their wide range of New Zealand made Celtic jewellery can be made completely to order and just the way you want it! This makes each and every piece unique and personalised to your needs. You can browse for a style you like which can be modified it to any specifications you want. You can choose the material (gold or platinum), metal colour combination (yellow, white gold or a mixture of both, or platinum), carat gold, ring size and types of gemstones you want – all in all, you have the flexibility to create a piece uniquely perfect for you.

You don’t need to be of Celtic heritage to appreciate and adore the beauty of fine Celtic jewellery.

Enter to win this fabulous Celtic ‘Infinity’ rings in 9ct yellow gold (value of NZD$886.00) – just make sure you have liked both the Dearly Beloved Facebook page and The Celtic Tui Facebook pages and enter online here.

The Infinity ring has a continuous and boundless pattern which symbolises the eternal circles of life.

Be in quick! Entries close at the end of August.

New forms to apply for wedding licences

The New Zealand Department of Births, Deaths and Marriages has released a new notice of intended marriage form for all couples to complete for weddings after the 19th August 2013.

From the 16 August couples will need to fill out the new form. The new form enables couples to chose from the terms ‘bride’, ‘bridegroom’ and ‘partner’.

The new terminology has been amended to align with recent statutory changes to marriage laws in New Zealand to allow same-sex couples to marry. The Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Act enables couples to marry regardless of their gender or sexual orientation. The new statutory definition of marriage in the Marriage Act defines marriage as “the union of two people, regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

To apply for a marriage licence you need to complete the notice of intended marriage and one of the couple will need to bring the completed form to a Registry Office in person, where they will also need to make a statutory declaration in front of a Registrar of Marriages and pay the fee to be issued a marriage licence.

The current fee for a New Zealand marriage licence is $122.60 if using an approved marriage celebrant, or $173.70 if having a Registry Office ceremony. Issuing the licence takes 3 working days from the date of application.

Once a marriage licence is issued it is valid for three months so you need to apply for the licence within three months of your planned wedding date.






Win a Vinka Design Wedding Dress consultation

Win with Vinka Design

Still looking for the perfect wedding dress?

We have a free consultation appointment with Vinka Design in Auckland for one lucky Dearly Beloved reader – worth $100.

Get the professional fit and style advice you need to ensure you feel spectacular as you sashay down the aisle.

Enter to win here. [contact-form][contact-field label=’Name’ type=’name’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Email’ type=’email’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Wedding date (if set)’ type=’text’/][contact-field label=’Why I%26#039;d love to win’ type=’textarea’/][/contact-form]

Sarah & Dave

Sarah Meek and Dave Klug had just four months to plan their beautiful wedding – while living on different continents!  With the help of friends and family, they were able to an amazing  job of planning their wedding day.

During the whole planning process Sarah was based in London and Dave was in South Africa. This meant from the outset it was important to make swift decisions!

Dave proposed to Sarah while they were visiting Sarah’s family in New Zealand. They quickly settled on a date and chose their reception venue – the Leigh Sawmill Cafe – before leaving the country for the next four months.

“Leading up to the wedding many people asked me how I could plan a wedding from London in four months and I could only respond that is was because I had great family and friends and this was so true. It would have been great if Dearly Beloved had existed then!”

They chose the Sawmill Cafe as their venue because they both loved it and it is is close to Sarah’s family bach at Leigh. Sarah wanted to involve loved ones in planning the day.

“It really was super to see so many people I love being part of the event! We had a dear friend Juliet take care of the decorations, this was awesome because she has a super creative eye – much better than me and I knew this would be safe in her hands. The attention to detail and results were wonderful.

“I really loved that our wedding was laid back and the venues were not hugely formal. This meant there was beauty in a bit of chaos; flowers and vases all different shapes and sizes, tables laid differently and because it was not about exacting formal order, things were relaxed. I loved the imperfections, the old bach with pealing wallpaper, the luggage tags the tables from slabs of wood. I really felt that it all added to the charm.”

“Susan, who manages the events at the Sawmill Cafe there was very efficient and accommodating which made life easy for us.”

For the ceremony, both Sarah and Dave wanted to get married in a church and having chosen a reception venue, began searching for a suitable church.  Sarah loved the idea of a Kiwi country wedding and found a little kauri church in Matakana which is also an events venue.

“It was ideal for us.  We had friends we wanted to involve in the service to marry us and take care of the music and one of my favourite aspects of our wedding was the music. My aunt and uncle and two cousins formed a band of guitars and vocalists.

We chose some of our favourite songs to walk into, sing and play while the register was being signed. The sound was enveloping and I loved that. I love hearing the songs now they always take me back to that day.

Within the service Dave and I had a quiet moment together after the signing of the register to take communion and pray together. This was important for us as we wanted to find a moment among the busyness for just the two of us. It was very special.”

“there was beauty in a bit of chaos – I loved the imperfections, the old bach with pealing wallpaper…it all added to the charm”

One thing Sarah and Dave are really glad they did was to choreograph half of the first dance. They danced to “Time Of My Life” from Dirty Dancing, just because they thought it would be a fun song.

Sarah had heard about a leap which was easy to do (easier than the one from the movie) so Dave and Sarah practiced it lots (even during the pre-dance photoshoot to check Dave could lift Sarah in her gorgeous dress!)

“It worked out really well and we were so happy we persevered to put the dance together. We only had one week and we did a bit of mime and some very basic moves. Because we had a band playing the song we choreographed to the words not the music.”

Asked what she might do differently, or recommend to other brides to think about, Sarah mentioned that having more time to plan would have helped. They also felt a longer planning period would have meant that more people could probably have attended the wedding.

Given the chance to do it again, Sarah and Dave say they would plan the celebrations to span a few more days so they could spend more time catching up with family and friends who travelled to be there.

Another hint Sarah offered is that she would give her father quite strong guidelines for his speech so he did not rattle on so long!

Sarah’s last tip for anyone still in planning mode:

“I was a little relaxed on the seating plan and if I could do it again I would probably mix things up a bit more.”

Sarah & Dave Klug – 04 April 2012

Venue – Leigh Sawmill Cafe

Photographer – Ken Buist Photographer

Cinematography – White Video

Entertainment – Halo band

Cake – Charlie and Cake

Church – St Andrews Matakana

Honeymoon accommodation – Parkiri Holiday Park

Jess Bradbury & Woody Blakely

8th February 2013

Jess and Woody decided to break with convention and started their wedding with a romantic pre-ceremony photo shoot up at beautiful Weka Pass.

Travelling in heli-style, the beautiful couple then tied the knot in front of family and friends at their own home. Celebrations kicked off with drinks on the lawn followed by a evening of dinner and dancing in the beautiful marquee.

Emma Newman weddings also created two lovely chill out areas for guests to enjoy during the wedding celebrations.

Wedding Planner: Emma Newman Weddings

Videographer: Lovelight

Macaroons: J’aime les maracrons

Photographer: Joe Johnson

Dress: Louise Anderson

The men: Working Style

Floral styling: Sweetpea Weddings

Catering: White Tie

Cake: Just Desserts

Celebrant: Craig Dixon

Stationary: The Drawing Room

Marquee: Hyde Park Hire

Photographer: Joe Johnson

Makeup : Tracey Allsopp

Entertainment: The Beat Girls


Emma’s wedding planning tips

Wedding planner extraordinaire, Emma Newman gives Dearly Beloved the low-down on working with a wedding planner…

Find Emma’s gorgeous work on Dearly Beloved

I always ask couples about what they need first

What are the main benefits of using a wedding planner?

You can save time, money and stress and not always in that order. An Engagement should be a time to enjoy and so often I hear couples breathe a sigh of relief when I become involved as they realise they won’t have to undertake all the bookings and planning. I love being organised and that allows couples time for their own lives.

Many engaged couples both work full time and don’t have much time during the day to make decisions – does this mean you end up doing a lot of after hours support?

Of course. I am looking at my diary right now and it is full of weekend and week night meetings. Any good planner in this day and age needs to be flexible to fit in with their couples lives.

Tell us about the most memorable couple you have planned a wedding for?

I know this sounds cheesy but there are so many. Of course couples are stressed when they plan their big days. There is a lot of pressure from media and from themselves to get it right. The couples I have loved the most are those that trust me and the process and even if they are stressed they remember to respect others and to still remain happy and charming!

A good wedding planner can save time, money and stress, not always in that order.

What are your favourite locations for ceremonies and which local venues do you love?

Those that are clean and well run and make the most of what they have. As far as locations – for a traditional homestead, Otahuna. For beach weddings, the Marlborough Sounds, especially Bay of Many Coves. Local to Christchurch, The George boutique hotel. And of course marquee weddings – well planned though!

Do you have a package system or do you tailor your services to each bride or couple’s individual needs?

I have packages but I always ask couples about what they need first that way each couple gets what they need rather than giving them standard responses.

What’s treading in weddings right now?

  • Food stations of your favourite food
  • Vintage themes a little less popular in favour of cleaner lines
  • Photo booths, not cameras on tables

Do you find that it is becoming more common for the groom to have an active role in decision making or do you find weddings are still largely about what the bride wants?

For sure – most of my meetings are with both but decoration and style of the wedding tend to be with the bride more.



Jacqueline’s perfect flowers

Dearly Beloved chatted with Jacqueline Neave of Jacqueline’s Florist about creating beautiful wedding flowers – find out what you need to know and all Jacqueline’s tips and tricks here:

Q. What do you love about working in the wedding industry?
A.It is such a special day for the bride, the groom and their families. Flowers are a lovely part of a wedding and it’s a privilege to source the perfect flowers for the occasion.

Q. What would your one most important piece of advice for brides-to-be to know before the big day?
A.Choose flowers that you really love — maybe a type of flower that has special meaning to you. Think about the flowers that are in season around your wedding date. Peony roses have quite a short season, and in a couple of cases I’ve had brides choose their wedding date to coincide with it!

Q. And the grooms?
A.It is your special day. Don’t be afraid to pop along to meetings with the florist. I’ll check with the bride-to-be first about which aspects of your wedding we can discuss — often she will want to leave the dress as a lovely surprise.

Q. What is trending right now in the world of wedding florals?
A.Lovely open blooms of beautiful David Austin roses, dahlias, and soft chrysanthemums. The vintage and whimsical look. Flower crowns are very pretty, and men’s buttonholes are popular. Flowers are being hung in vintage vases and jars from trees which looks beautiful and can create a great conversation piece.

Q. What is the most interesting wedding request you ever had?
A.Recently we did flowers for a farm wedding where the service was on held on a private beach. The flower crowns and the bouquets incorporated olive branches from the farm and bunny tails from the beach, together with roses, daisies and lisianthus. It was beautiful because it was all part of the location, which was very special to the family. Also, the bouquet had to be sturdy enough to come down the hill with the bride on a quad bike!

Q. How can the right florist enhance the day and take the stress out of wedding planning?
A.Flowers are an important part of the atmosphere at a wedding. The right florist will sit down with you in a relaxed environment and discuss your ideas, and then make sure the flowers look perfect on the big day.

Q. What sets you apart in your industry / is different or special about how you approach things?
A.We cater especially to weddings and offer a very personalised service. With no retail space to worry about, we put all our attention into your special day. Often we will search vintage stores for the perfect vase or accessory to suit a wedding. We personally deliver your flowers and will set up at the venue to ensure everything is just perfect.

Q. Do you have any tips for brides on a budget of where to splurge and where to save, or how to get the most from their budget when it comes to flowers?
A.Think about which flowers people will see the most of at your wedding — often it’s the bridal bouquet and the table pieces. Work with your florist to pick flowers that will be in season on your wedding day. You will get healthy, high quality flowers, and more of them!

To see more of Jacqueline’s glorious work visit: