Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love, what is unique about you and your relationship… We love traveling and making a living while doing it. We’re proud Canadians living in Melbourne and by the time you’re reading this we’ll be living in San Francisco. Mike works as a Sales Manager for an awesome Tech company called Slack and I work as a Human Resources Specialist for lululemon. No matter what we come up against, we have each other’s backs. It’s a really special feeling when you’re someone’s number one.

 What do you love most about each other? Mike: She’s stubborn, fiercely protective of her loved ones, and always stands up for what’s right. Laura: He’s the most ambitious and brilliant person I’ve ever met. Nothing gets in his way.

Tell us about your special day… It was perfect. Eloping made it such an intimate experience. I crept out of the hotel room early to get a long morning run in. When I got back, we had some special time together before I went to get my hair and makeup done. Of course, I changed my mind last minute and made Mike run around downtown Auckland to find a bowtie for the ceremony. Mike’s parents also surprised us and flew out the night before from Vancouver so they got to spend some quality father-son time together before the ceremony while Mike’s Mom helped me put on my dress.Our ceremony at the Registry was quick. We were in and out within 20 minutes. We were surrounded by some close friends and family who made our day so meaningful. After the ceremony was over, our Photographer took us out to Karekare Beach for our elopement photos. We had the most incredible time. We were on such a wedding high that the world seemed to disappear around us. We topped off the night with a delicious dinner at Clooney and a ridiculous amount of Champagne.

How did you choose the location? I had never been to New Zealand but it always held such a magical place in my heart. We love nature and it was our Photographer, Samantha, that recommended Karekare beach to us. She nailed it! I’ve never seen a more beautiful place. We were alone on a black sand beach surrounded by cliffs and streams at golden hour. What more could you want.

Was there a specific theme or style? Tell us a little about the setting, the styling and some of your favourite details…We love the outdoors and knew we wanted to be surrounded by water and greenery. For my bouquet, I wanted it to be mostly greenery and very trancing with the leaves hanging down. I knew I wanted an up-do with a natural smoky eye so I had my Pinterest board ready for inspiration. Mike is very easy when it comes to clothes so he asked me to pick out his outfit for the wedding day and that was that.

What were some of the most memorable/unique moments from the day? When the celebrant was reading his last few words before saying “you may now kiss the bride”, we were on cloud nine. Those seconds leading up to sealing the deal were filled with a lot of emotion and gratitude. Our afternoon after the ceremony at Karekare beach was unforgettable. We got to cross streams, climb up cliffs and wade through the bushes. We were in our element and just loved it. I thought we would be really awkward having a photographer telling us when to kiss and which way to look but she made us feel comfortable and completely at ease. That day was one for the books.

Any advice for other couples planning to spend the rest of their lives together? Absolutely. Make sure that the decisions you make whether it’s for your wedding or future plans is about the two of you. It’s so easy to get caught up in what other people want for you that you start to lose sight of what’s important. At the end of the day you get to marry this beautiful human standing in front of you and that’s all that matters.

Tell us about your main outfits, what was unique, is there a story? As most brides know, finding THE dress is a process and it takes a while. Since we planned our elopement in such a short period of time, I ordered 4 white dresses online, chose the best one and sent the others back. I didn’t have time for alterations so I bought some Spanx, crossed my fingers, and hoped for the best. Mike wore one of his blue business suits and I made him buy a bowtie the morning of the ceremony. We were lucky with how well it came together.

What went to plan and what didn’t? We planned our entire elopement in 10 days and all the vendors made this day possible. We were blown away by how attentive and personable they were. There’s something special about Kiwis. They were so willing to help and did everything possible to ensure the day went off without a hitch. The only thing that didn’t go to plan was when I gave the wrong address of the Registry to our friends and Photographer. I think bride brain kicked in and I had a little freak out on our way there. Thankfully they asked around and knew where to find it. It was smooth sailing after that.

What does being married or being in a union mean to you? And what is married life like so far? I thought I’d wake up the next day and it would feel like any other day. But it didn’t. I rolled over in bed and took a good long stare at my now husband. Making a lifelong promise to protect them and always stand for them is powerful. It gave me a new meaning of unconditional love.

Main outfit/s: Grace & Hart Allure Gown, Suit: Bossini | Ring/s: Brilliant Earth (Bride) & Lugaro Jewellers (Groom) | Shoes: Wittner (Bride) & Cole Haan (Groom) | Other jewellery: Peter Lang Earrings | Makeup : Grace Latta @ Mecca Cosmetica | Hair: Dry & Tea 

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