ro­man­tic rec­ol­lec­tions

New Zealand Weddings - - CONTENTS -

The Edge ra­dio host Jay-Jay Feeney re­calls the day she ex­changed vows on a snow-dusted Queen­stown peak

Dom and I had met briefly through work. I was based at The Edge in Hamil­ton, and he was at 2XS FM in Palmer­ston North, which is now More FM. One night, he ran­domly called me to ask if I’d like to go to a Bee Gees con­cert with him. I agreed, but then he asked if he could crash at my house the night be­fore. I thought, ‘I know what he wants!’ But he’d scrubbed up quite well and we im­me­di­ately hit it off.

Dom would al­ways say, ‘I’m go­ing to marry you one day’. It used to an­noy me be­cause he was tak­ing the sur­prise out of it, so I de­cided I’d ask him in­stead.

When we were in New York in Au­gust 2002, I’d or­gan­ised a ring and planned to pro­pose at the top of the Em­pire State Build­ing, but I was so ner­vous and there were loads of peo­ple around, so I chick­ened out. I even­tu­ally asked him at the base­ment of the New Yorker Ho­tel – in the laun­dry room!

I’m not a sum­mer girl, so we had a win­ter wed­ding on June 20, 2004, pho­tographed by Greg Wil­son from Palmer­ston North. The cer­e­mony took place on top of Queen­stown’s Deer Park Heights and the re­cep­tion was held at Moon­light Sta­bles in Ar­row­town.

I hired wed­ding plan­ner Jody Zim­mer­man, which was the best de­ci­sion I ever made. She to­tally took the stress out of our day – I felt like a groom! Our guest list of 100 peo­ple was chal­leng­ing – I had es­tranged fam­ily mem­bers who couldn’t be the same room, and a friend got the pip with me be­cause I didn’t in­vite her boyfriend of six weeks.

Anna Schim­mel de­signed my gown: a Euro­pean bri­dal duchess dress with hand­beaded French lace. I also wore a faux fur cloak, lined in satin, which I’ve since lent to two other brides. My shoes were these in­cred­i­ble knee- high Spice Girl boots that I found in LA – per­fect for the snow. I car­ried a white calla lily bou­quet de­signed by Queen­stown florist Sarah Gutschlag that matched the lilies we used to dec­o­rate the cer­e­mony and re­cep­tion venues.

Dom wore a cus­tom-made black suit by RJB De­sign and his best man [The Breeze DJ] Robert Scott, hired a suit from Frank Casey.

Co­rina Homer, a work friend, had let slip that she’d al­ways wanted to be a brides­maid – and she was an awe­some one. Her dress was an ice-blue, floor-length silk gown with dia­manté straps.

I’ll never for­get a hi­lar­i­ous mo­ment in the morn­ing while Co­rina and I were get­ting ready. We heard a com­mo­tion out­side, and there were Dom and Robert run­ning around in the snow – naked! My mum and Dom’s mum were with us and saw the whole thing.

I wasn’t ner­vous about get­ting mar­ried, but I was a bit wor­ried about be­ing the cen­tre of at­ten­tion. The whole time I was think­ing, ‘ This is so weird. I can’t be­lieve this is hap­pen­ing.’

The Cham­ber­maids string trio per­formed the ‘Bri­dal Cho­rus’ as I came down the aisle, and we signed the registry to ‘As’ by Ge­orge Michael and Mary J Blige. ‘Here, There and Ev­ery­where’ by The Bea­tles played when we ex­ited the cer­e­mony, and Ne­sian Mys­tik en­ter­tained through­out the night.

We hon­ey­mooned in an over- wa­ter bun­ga­low in Bora Bora, Tahiti. One night a huge storm rolled in and I was sure we were go­ing to be swept away. The rest of the trip was amaz­ing, even if a can of coke cost $8.

For our first an­niver­sary we stayed at Wai­heke Is­land’s The Boat­shed, and ev­ery year we give each other the tra­di­tional an­niver­sary wed­ding gifts: paper, cot­ton and so on.

For me, the se­cret to a happy mar­riage is al­ways be­ing on the same page. I think some peo­ple take wed­dings way too se­ri­ously. My ad­vice for brides to be is to re­lax.

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