Jen and Luke we’re inspired by lots of different things for their Auckland wedding. They wanted their day to be bohemian but luxe, industrial but in the city.
Their ceremony was held at Edge Kingsland, a warehouse space and their reception on the roof of Auckland District Law Society. “We didn’t play by the rules or stick with the same old template wedding”, said the bride. “This meant more work for us but also meant we loved every part of our day because it was a unique reflection of us. We researched a lot of venues around Auckland and nothing really fit so decided to do it ourselves in exactly the way we wanted to do it.”
“Because of the size of the rooftop, our reception numbers were quite limited”, she continued. “Because of this we had a semi-open invite to our ceremony. We chose to cut our cake during our ceremony so all our friends and family could be a part of that moment. It wasn’t perfect – we forgot to put the flowers on top of the cake (something I always wanted) so I told my bridesmaids to find me some flowers ASAP and basically ripped the heads off them and stuck them on the cake, in front of everyone! The cake knife was also nowhere to be found so one of the groomsmen ran off stage and found the first cutting utensil which happened to be a small bread and butter knife!”
Centred around some seriously impressive tipis that were set up in the heart of the picturesque Derbyshire Peak District, this shoot was created to showcase colourful, fun and more abstract wedding styling ideas.
“The inspiration behind the shoot involved tapping into the emerging trend for paint splashes and abstract art and combining this with the concept of upcycling”, said Kimberley of Peaktipis. “We wanted to re-purpose everyday items to give them a new found use and beauty. The palette was fun, springtime, and candy sweet to contrast with the upcycled elements and also keep a romantic, feminine theme. We also incorporated neon signage as a statement.”
Nina and Christian wanted an intimate wedding. They had just 40 guests meaning they could have a small ceremony and a non-traditional reception at East Thirty Six, a restaurant in Toronto.
“It was very important to us to have an extremely intimate wedding full of love, that personified who we are as people and told our story”, said the bride. “We really appreciate antiques and music from the 1920s (and cocktails!) so it seemed perfect to have a wedding inspired by those times. We heard from our guests that they were amazed by the small things and all the attention to detail. We wanted each and every person there to feel special and that we appreciated their presence. We even had an actor dressed in a zoot suit to greet guests as they arrived. There wasn’t really any part of the day that followed the traditional wedding route. We had no bridal party and little formality during the ceremony.”
“We wanted to pay homage to the Prohibition era without taking on some of the more elaborate features of, say, a Gatsby-inspired wedding”, she continued. “Our vibe was grittier for the reception; the restaurant is quite dark and has some beautiful interior design elements. We used empty liquor bottles as vases, vintage teacups to serve cocktails in, and there wasn’t a feather or diamond decoration in sight!”
Matt and Lilly were married in Vermont at the groom’s parents’ place. His parents not only built the house themselves and most of the furniture inside it, but for the wedding Matt’s mother planted flowers in their wedding colours which bloomed just as the wedding rolled round. How amazing is that!?
“We didn’t really want a theme for the wedding but I guess it kind of ended up having a fall and camp theme”, said the bride. “We even made a map of the grounds that kind of looked like a camp map.”
Lilly made her own dress and her maid of honour created her feathered headpiece for her. “I had a pre-wedding crafting party where we made the bunting banners, and screen-printed the tea towels and made labels for the maple syrup which were both part of the favours. Matt’s family helped fill and label the bottles. The Vermont maple syrup in the bottles was from John’s friend Bernie’s sugar shack. Matt made wood signs that looked like state park signs. I designed the table numbers and my maid of honour provided the candles and decorated the candle holders.”
Kenzie and Jeremy had one goal for their August wedding – to break Vegas! “As soon as we got engaged we knew we didn’t want a typical wedding”, said the bride. “We didn’t want anything in a church, or anything really traditional. We also knew we didn’t want to have anything huge, and one way to eliminate a massive guest list is to make it a destination wedding.”
“Our friends are some of the most amazing people on the planet and we wanted to be able to go somewhere where everyone could let loose and have a blast. So we decided to pick up and go to Vegas. It’s an amazing city where dreams can come true, and ours did. We wanted our wedding to be fun, light hearted, crazy, amazing. We were very honoured that Jeremy’s dad was there too. He hadn’t seen him for 20 years and he made it out to the wedding!”
Did you know we create a bi-monthly magazine? Of course you did, because between you all you bought 1,000 copies through our website within two days of its official release date. Sure, we had pre-orders up for a while before hand but we didn’t expect to sell even half of that over the next two months! And while this is undoubtedly great news it came with some real challenges and forced us to scale up our logistics on short notice. Here’s how we did it.
From 2011 to 2014 we were self-publishing, self-distributing an annually produced magazine. It was a labour of love, spawned from a weird idea, which furnished us with far more praise than we ever expected. The business model was pretty basic: We would print 1,000 copies per issue and they would gradually sell over a 12-month period until they were all gone. Two or three times a week I would take a trip to our local Post Office to send out the orders. The counter staff there got to know me well, they knew what I was sending and between us the process became relatively efficient for its scale.
But regardless, there were times when that arrangement would prove problematic. For instance, with every new release we would have a flood of orders. The 2013 release saw us receive 198 orders on launch day alone. When I walked into the Post Office that day the manager looked understandably distraught. He put a staff member on my delivery and asked me to come back a few hours later to pay the… *ahem* sizable bill.
This all changed in January, when we started working with a 3rd party publisher. Along with getting our magazine in high-street stores like WHSmiths, their distributors would hold all the stock and take responsibility for shipping out the online orders – no longer would our dining table be a small-scale warehouse for packing and shipping magazines! Unfortunately, the appeal of leaving it to somebody else soon wore off as customer satisfaction hit an all-time low. Every week we were dealing with customers’ who were waiting for their orders to arrive. And it’s not as if there were thousands and thousands of magazines to ship, we were only taking in the order of a few hundred online sales per issue at the time. Yet in our four year magazine-selling-history we had never had so many customer service problems as we did during the first half of 2015.
So what was going wrong? There were two main problems, first was the sheer number of people involved in shipping the product. It had gone from one (i.e. me) to a dozen, spread through three different companies. Any customer queries had to propegate through the entire chain before the buyer had so much as a response, let alone a resolution, to their questions. The second problem was economics, it was only cost effective for the distributor to send out our customers’ orders once a fortnight which meant some people had to wait nearly two weeks after making payment before their magazine even left the warehouse! It doesn’t matter what size your business is, this just isn’t good enough in 2015.