Une belle vie

Anna Krahn mar­ried Jonathan Fan­tham at Château de la Mogère in Mont­pel­lier, France, on Thurs­day, June 5, 2014

New Zealand Weddings - - CELEBRATIONS -

Our be­gin­nings Jono and I met as col­leagues in 2010. A year later, we both found our­selves in Poland, so de­cided to meet up. We started dat­ing and im­me­di­ately knew it was meant to be. He popped the ques­tion on Valen­tine’s Day 2012 when we were tramp­ing around Lake Waikare­moana. We’d just reached Panekiri Bluff when Jono sug­gested we take a self-timed photo. Next thing I knew he was on one knee – the whole pro­posal was caught on film. Viva la France Hav­ing lived in France for nearly a year, get­ting mar­ried was a chance to share Mont­pel­lier – our new home – with our fam­i­lies, who trav­elled from New Zealand and the UK. Château de la Mogère, with its court­yards, man­i­cured gar­dens and 18th-cen­tury ar­chi­tec­ture lent a quintessen­tially French vibe. Our wed­ding style We em­braced a whim­si­cal for­est gar­den party theme, dec­o­rat­ing the château’s grounds with a flo­ral arch and sil­ver pails burst­ing with blos­soms. Coin­ci­den­tally, the prop­erty worked har­mo­niously with our mint, peach and laven­der colour pal­ette bet­ter than we ever could have planned – its pas­tel green shut­ters were iden­ti­cal to the shade of the brides­maid dresses and the gar­den was bright with pur­ple flow­ers. My dream dress Choos­ing my dress was one of the eas­i­est de­ci­sions I made. De­signed by San Pa­trick Barcelona, it fea­tured a sweet­heart neck­line with lace-capped sleeves and a fish­tail skirt. I ac­ces­sorised with an Ital­ian tulle veil, mak­ing the look el­e­gant but not over­done – it was ex­actly what I wanted. Tak­ing the cake We couldn’t de­cide be­tween a tra­di­tional wed­ding cake or a French cro­quem­bouche, so de­cided to have both. Jono’s mum made a sump­tu­ously boozy fruit cake, had it dec­o­rated pro­fes­sion­ally in Gis­borne and brought it all the way with her to France! It fol­lowed a buf­fet meal of ro­tis­serie lamb and guinea fowl, and was the per­fect way to com­ple­ment the ar­ray of mac­arons and French sweets we served for dessert. Some­thing spe­cial We per­son­alised our vows by in­cor­po­rat­ing ref­er­ences to both our roots: a sand-com­bin­ing rit­ual sym­bol­ised Jono grow­ing up on the Kiwi beach, while a hand­fast­ing cer­e­mony (an an­cient Pa­gan cus­tom) ac­knowl­edged my English her­itage. My ad­vice for brides to be When choos­ing ven­dors, al­ways try and get ref­er­ences from other brides. For us, this yielded the best pro­fes­sion­als – a sales pitch can only tell you so much.

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