Madi Lane bride Laura tied the knot with her sweetheart Fox wearing our AINSLEY gown in a beautiful traditional Tongan style wedding in Christchurch, New Zealand. Their love story has us in all the feels!
After 2 previous plans were cancelled due to the lockdown in New Zealand, Fox was holding out the right opportunity. Thankfully when the domestic travel restrictions were lifted, we travelled South to Invercargill to visit family and spend quality time together. My parents have been converting a church into a luxury B&B (The Church 1914) and took us for a tour through the building to show us their recent updates. After going through the upstairs renovations, mum called me into the foyer for my opinion on something. Completely unaware, I walked into the foyer and turned the corner, and there was a beautiful setup of festoon lights, a balloon garland, and Fox standing there with my family watching on. Even my brother in Australia was on facetime. Fox said the most beautiful words of “I will love you until my very last breath” and asked me to marry him. He is my person and I couldn’t imagine my life without him. It was the easiest ‘yes’ I’ve ever said.
I went into purchasing my wedding dress with only Madi Lane being a contender. I adored all the designs, styles and how they suited so many different body shapes. After trying on half the shop, when I exited the fitting room in Ainsley, my Mum and sister teared up. Not only was Ainsley beautiful and comfortable, but it accentuated all my favourite parts of my body. I tried on a couple more and then went back to Ainsley, put her back on, and as the shop assistant was clipping the back I teared up. If I felt this beautiful now, imagine how I would feel on my wedding day when the dress was fitting perfectly for me! Ainsley was the one! The delicate leaf and floral lace reminded me of beautiful Tongan flowers which I knew my husband-to-be would love. The V neck and sweetheart neckline was flattering and the comfortable boning cinched in my little waist whilst supporting my fuller bust. The rest of the gown flowed beautifully from my waist. The back V cut and the full, long train gave me my ‘wow’ moment I was searching for. Ainsley is beautiful and I knew she was my dress!
Fox and I spent a lot of time trying to settle on a location for our wedding. Fox is Tongan and we loved the idea of getting married in Tonga but with Covid it felt like an impossible reality so we opted to look in our own backyard. We looked in Christchurch and stumbled up Bangor Farm, Darfield and it was beautiful! It was the place for us. To honour Fox and his family’s culture we decided that we would bring the Tropical vibes of Tonga to New Zealand. Our day was filled with nods to Tongan tradition with the finesse of a traditional wedding. Our idea for our wedding was for our guests to be relaxed, have fun, and leave the day saying that was the best wedding ever. The ceremony was filled with words of love and accompanied by Tongan songs. After our ceremony, Fox, myself, our photographer, and the videographer left the venue in a helicopter to capture photos on a mountain looking over the Canterbury valleys. We are so happy we did this as it gave us a moment to be together and just enjoy the moment. After our reception meals, we got some golden hour photos before I changed into a traditional Tongan outfit to perform a Tau’olunga. This is a Tongan tradition to celebrate and honour the newly married couple, the beginning of their family and future. It was the biggest honour to respect Fox’s family and culture by performing this. Our wedding was the best day of our lives and we wish we could relive every moment. We love that we honoured both cultures and brought two families together to create one.
Walking down the aisle to my husband, hearing his beautiful vows, having some time together as a married couple, and honouring his family and culture with a Tongan Tau’olunga.
You are marrying your best friend, it’s easy to get caught up in the expectations or trends of a wedding but at the end of the day it’s about your love and celebrating that together.
Photographer: Meg Elizabeth
Venue: Bangor Farm, Darfield