Land of the long white cloud Aotearoa or otherwise known as New Zealand is a popular destination for couples seeking a wedding with a difference. Queenstown & Wanaka provide the perfect backdrop with stunning lakes surrounded by magnificent and dramatic mountains, how could you not fall in love with this beautiful region? There are many things to consider when planning a destination wedding and couples can find it particularly overwhelming especially when you do not know the region. However, rest assured the whole wedding industry in this region is outstanding, we are a close-knit community that supports one another and this truly shines through in the weddings we produce.

Today I have put together a “Wedding Planning & Flower Guide For Your New Zealand Nuptials” with, me! Gypsy West of The Vase Floral Co. & The Lovers Co. for The New Zealand Issue! I’ve also included a few of my favourite weddings throughout the piece to entice you to hop over the Tasman and celebrate your love in the land of the long white cloud.

Images of The Vase Floral Co. by Dawn Thomson

My Top Tips For Planning Your NZ Wedding

Invest in a local wedding planner/photographer – they know the area so well and can recommend the right team for your day. They also remove the stress of planning so you can focus on the enjoyable elements like choosing your outfits, rings, and guests lists. This is why we set up The Lovers Co. as we were discovering so many couples were struggling with planning their day by themselves from afar.

Images: Eichardt’s + Pacific Jemm Styled Shoot by Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

Choose Your Season

What’s your favourite time of year with your lover? Before you pick a date, have a think about what time of year you both enjoy, and I’ve also added below what the weather can be like during the seasons.

Summer – offers warmer weather and longer days (the sunset is around 10 pm)!

Images: Jordan & Jack by Dawn Thomson

Autumn – when lush green trees turn to beautiful autumnal hues, the days are comfortable, the weather is generally rather settled and the sun is lower in the sky which creates beautiful photos. I chose autumn for my elopement and couldn’t have been happier with the whole outcome.

Images: Hayley & Jayden by Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

Winter means snow-capped mountains, fires roaring, mulled wine and the town is buzzing from the ski fields. Yes, it can be cold, but if you dress appropriately you can still have an amazing day!

Images: Hayley & Jayden by Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

Images: Hannah & Mauro by Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

Spring – the weather can be a little unsettled i.e. windy, however, the beautiful spring blooms will distract you from that!

Images: Belinda & Gavin by Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

Throw In Your Honeymoon

Add an extra week or two to your trip and explore the beauty that New Zealand offers as newlyweds. There are so many hidden gems around every corner! For an adventure honeymoon in NZ, check out this piece on Polka Dot Honeymoons.

My Top Tips For Your Wedding Day Florals

Don’t choose your florist based on price – choose them because you love their aesthetic and be upfront about your budget. It truly helps us to maximise your floral elements. I work with what’s available seasonally, so if you really love peonies maybe ask your florist first when they are in full season and then look at setting your date.

Images of The Vase Floral Co. by Dawn Thomson

Create a Pinterest board to share with your florist, however, keep in mind we are a small country with only a couple of flower markets and because many of us are located remotely we don’t get to go to the markets. We also can’t get toffee roses here, so be mindful that we may have to change your vision slightly.

Images of The Vase Floral Co. by Dawn Thomson

If you are eloping, you don’t have to discount having ceremony florals just because it’s just the two of you. Have your dream wedding and if you LOVE flowers why should you not include them everywhere?

Images: Sam & Hayden  By Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

Giving creative freedom to your florist is one of the greatest gifts you can give. It allows us to think outside the box and give you unique florals whilst still keeping in mind your vision. This has been when some of my greatest work has been produced.

Images: Sam & Hayden  By Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co

If you are getting multiple quotes from vendors, please have the courtesy to let them know you have booked someone else. We spend a lot of time preparing these and holding your date. We won’t be offended as we know you’ll be in great hands whoever you book with.

Images: Sarah & Abish by Dawn Thomson & The Lovers Co.

About The Vase Floral Co.: Queenstown’s leading wedding studio creates floral art that goes far beyond, “I need a wedding bouquet.” Embracing the feelings and memories that make up your love story, artist Gypsy West specialises in intuitive designs that have never been seen before.

Images of Gypsy West of The Vase Floral Co. & The Lovers Co.

All images by Dawn Thomson