Wedding : Annabel and Jesse

I was lucky enough to first meet Annabel and Jesse on one of their wedding planning trips to Wellington. They live up in Auckland but had chosen to get married close to family, so they made the most of any visit to get their wedding planning done.

They chose to have their wedding at one of my favourite venues, Wharekauhau, a stunning country lodge that wouldn’t look out of place in The Hamptons. It’s where Kate and Wills stayed when they took a few days off on their NZ tour and it’s also where Mr. Edwards took me for my birthday last year. It is a bit of drive out of Wellington but has one of the most amazing scenic routes out of the city and over some large hills and down the length of Lake Wairarapa.

Photography Anna Kidman

The whole look Annabel chose was very romantic, garden roses, delicate foliages and loose blooms made up the bouquets and tables centres. She wanted lots of classic white flowers with a few hints of blush and crimson. There was lots of texture and everything moved gently as the bouquet moved. I think this is the classic YE look that we are known for, lots of flowers, sumptuous bloom selection, movement, and texture. I like our wedding designs to have a bespoke,  luxury feel but also timeless and elegant.


Annabel and Jesse chose a beautiful archway for the ceremony. I love making larger floral displays – these larger installations are ones that I feel most excited about these days. Of course, I still adore making every bouquet, I just enjoy the extra design work that goes into working with larger quantities of flowers. To finish the look on the lawn we scattered some petals and flowers heads which later would have been covered in all the confetti, I would imagine that the lodge team was picking up confetti for weeks afterwards.  

It was decided on the day that the ceremony would be set up on the lawn closest to the lodge. Charlotte Wood, Annabel and Jesse’s wedding planner, made the decision because there was some wind due throughout our windy region. I have to say that having a wedding planner really takes any anxiety out of decisions like this, they make life much easier for couples on the day making sure all the details are taken care of, so all that’s left to do is sip champagne and enjoy getting ready – just how it should be. Charlotte had done a wonderful job of arranging a beautiful marquee for the reception with chandeliers and white chivari chairs, even the carpet flooring matched the grey colour scheme.

Annabel and Jesse had beautiful details throughout the wedding, gorgeous stationery, menus and a pretty welcome sign to greet guests on arrival. We used lots of dusky foliage through the wedding, decorating here, there and everywhere, Eucalyptus, olive and a new favourite pittosporum really suited the lush garden setting.

I have a few favourite parts of the day, one was driving around to the owner’s cottage after setting everything up and delivering Annabel and the ladies their bouquets. They were so excited to see us and it was just lovely to spend a few minutes with them before the ceremony.

I also love putting our work into beautiful places, and the stylish marquee really made the most of our floral designs, which is always rewarding. Then there is the gorgeous film that Jono Tucker made, you have to watch it just for the confetti shot. It was lovely to create a wedding with all the thoughtful little extra details even a fireworks display to end the evening.

Annabel will be a bride to remember, she was so lovely to work with and she pops in to see me at the studio when she is in Wellington for her visits. I loved the handwritten note she sent to us afterward. I say this all the time, but we really do get the loveliest brides and grooms to work with.

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