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Romantic Floral Dunedin Garden Wedding by Acorn Photography

We saved by… I have to admit…I’m not a very do-it-yourself kind of person, in fact I don’t think I have a single artistic or crafty bone in my body! Because of that, Andy and I definitely went for convenience over affordability and kept our DIY to the minimum. However, my Mum did spend many painstaking hours creating 75 beautiful confetti cones and a wonderful “Advice Board” for us.

Today’s gorgeous wedding took place in a beautiful garden setting on the Otago Peninsula, inspired by romantic florals…

The only thing I was 100% certain on for our wedding theme was that we would have peonies at the center and everything else would work around them. – Cara

Moody skies + lush green backdrops + mirror like harbour views make this wedding seriously romantic, with it all captured perfectly by Dunedin based Acorn Photography. Enjoy! xox 

Who Andrew + Cara Ridden (nee Raal)
Where Glenfalloch Gardens & Restaurant Dunedin
Guests 67 in total – mostly close friends and family

Our love story began… four years ago while working in the same job – Playball Dunedin, however this work was quite sporadic and so it took us a long time to actually get to know each other. Andy is incredibly shy and quiet and although I am very outgoing, trying to talk to him on the brief occasions when we worked together was painstakingly hard! Eventually I had decided I’d had enough of trying to make things happen at work and I needed to take things a step further… So after some discussion with some of my closest friends I decided to throw an “end of year” party. My friends and I dubbed this party “Operation Candy” (Cara + Andy = Candy)…safe to say it was a success and we’ve literally been inseparable ever since.

I said yes… Although quiet and shy, Andy has a real knack for making the simplest things incredibly romantic. Our proposal was much the same. As I’m a nurse I often work shift work and the weekends, whereas Andy works Mon-Fri and plays football in the weekends. After about 4 weeks of not having a single day off coinciding we eventually had a Saturday off together. Andy had a whole day of activities planned which basically involved re-creating our first few dates together. First he took me out to the Otago Peninsula to watch the seals frolicking, we grabbed an ice-cream and some lunch and then went for a stroll in the Dunedin Botanic Gardens.

After an hour or so of wandering around the gardens I mentioned maybe we should head back home as it was looking like it was going to rain. Andy seemed really hesitant to head back home and kept insisting that we try “one more path”. So, reluctantly, I agreed and we walked down this derelict path which opened out to a large lawn and bench overlooking North Dunedin. Once I saw the bench I realized that this was where we had our second date and we had spent hours sitting and chatting at this bench. When I sat down Andy got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I had been given the diamond for my ring 8 or so years ago from my Grandpa in South Africa and my parents had kept it safe for me until we decided to get engaged. Unbeknownst to me, Andy had spoken to my father and got the diamond made into a beautiful ring for me.

Our wedding style was… Romantic/floral. The only thing I was 100% certain on for our wedding theme was that we would have peonies at the center and everything else would work around them.

We splurged on… Photography and videography. Personally, I always thought one of the most important aspects of a wedding is the photography as it’s something you get to keep forever and share with your children and grandchildren. After hearing endless amounts of friends and family say things like “your day will go by so quickly, make sure you take it all in” I decided that I really needed to go all out. After our wedding, I can safely say this was the best decision I ever made – the Acorn Photography team were spectacular and I cannot get enough of our photos and video. Having the creative video was like the icing on the cake as it meant we got to share our day with our friends and family who couldn’t make it.

Our advice to engaged couples… The biggest piece of advice I could give couples is don’t stress the little things. They may seem like big things now, but on the day they will seem insignificant compared to the fact that you just got to marry the love of your life.


Photographer Erin & Dave Isaacs at Acorn Photography
Flowers Amaryllis for Flowers
Venue + Catering Glenfalloch Gardens & Restaurant
Stationery + SignageJust My Type
Welcome Sign Harlan Creative
Hair Aurum Hairstylists
Makeup Sam at Ivy Make-up Artists
Cake The Tart Tin
Celebrant Nicola Wall
Brides Dress + Veil Venus Bridal from House of Kavina
Brides Accessories Necklace / Earrings Stewart Dawsons + Shoes Merchant
Bridesmaid Dresses Venus Bridal from House of Kavina
Grooms Suit Ace Suit Hire + Shoes Number One Shoes + Cufflinks & Watch ASOS+ Belts Hallensteins
Rings Dunedin Goldsmiths
Transport Two family friends who owned vintage cars
Music DJ from Gravity Events

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