A Country Wedding

The old pews await the guests in the garden to the rear of the store - encircled by bunting...

We’re sorry if we missed your call last Thursday. We had a wedding in the Country Trading family last week so we all downed tools and headed across to the Langford Store in Golden Bay. It was a very special, very country, wedding. The lovely Jess married her Carl in a 1920s themed wedding that gave us all a great chance to frock up and celebrate life, love and all things country.

Country Trading ladies on the loose!

Jess and Carl had been planning a wedding earlier in the year in America (Carl’s home) but had to cancel it when Jess got sick. While Jess was going through treatment, they entered a competition to win an amazing wedding and – low and behold they did, which was a bright spot in an otherwise pretty grim year for them.

The wedding was organised by Terri Everett, marriage and event planner from the Dream Maker.  She put together an amazing wedding for Jess and Carl with the help of over 20 local businesses who provided everything to make the day a special one. The cake, dress, rings, venue, catering, photographs, flowers, hair & makeup, accommodation and even the invitations and horse and carriage were all provided by local businesses.

Jess does a good job of looking like she always travels by carriage.

The venue was the historic Langford Store in the magnificent Aorere valley, on the road to the start of the Heaphy Track. It is a stones throw from Collingwood and has been operating since 1928. The current store keeper, Sukhita Langford, is the 4th generation of the Langford family to operate it and she has skillfully and sensitively extended its services into afternoon teas, local art, amazing vintage goods and a unique and beautiful venue. Oh and it is still a store where you can get ice creams and $1 mixtures!

Langford Store - NZ's oldest working post office!

Old wooden pews were set out in the grounds to the rear of the store. The ends of each pew were festooned with beautiful bunches of rhodos and spring greenery. The pews faced the solid mountains that provided a suitable permanent backdrop for proceedings. The mighty patch of garlic behind the pews tickled my fancy and was entirely appropriate as Jess grows a mean patch of garlic in her own garden.

...and a very fine bed of garlic - very appropriate as Jess is a mean garlic grower!

The sun shone on us all as we assembled and admired each others finery. Everyone had entered into the spirit of the theme. One lady even had her Aunts fox stole around her neck, complete with head and feet! Others had feathers and flapper dresses. The men had waistcoats and flat caps and some had spectacular beards and mo’s grown for the occasion.

12 Jess Wedding-21

The service was beautiful and the couple were relaxed with each other and the guests. We all laughed together as they shared their vows and signed the register to the clinking of champagne glasses.  Jess looked amazing and elegant in a stunning dress topped with a fine chain neck and shoulder piece.

Geraldine checks out the shoes and dress.

We toasted their happiness and got to know the guests while they had their photos taken. Then we had a fabulous afternoon tea in the store and listened to the modern telegrams (skype messages) from family and friends overseas.

The bride and groom relax over cake and tea with the guests - job done!

Our congratulations to Jess & Carl from all the Country Trading crew and we wish you all the best for many happy years together. And a huge round of applause to Terri from the Dream Maker for putting it all together.  Here are some more of our photos from the day… and for the full story, visit the Dream Maker and Langford Store on FaceBook.



  1. What a beautiful compliment for all the services and products which came together not only to help Carl and Jessica’s dreams come true but also for the promotion of Golden Bay and the Langford Store as a stunning wedding or event destination and venue.

    Please remember us when your thinking of what to do or are asked by someone, have you got any ideas. The Langford Store is such an important piece of living history and some how we have to support it to continue its story, as we love
    “Closed for a private function” but not “Closed permanently!”

    1. Absolutely Terri, it was a great showcase of the services the Bay can bring to any special event.

  2. What a wonderful wedding! Jess looks beautiful and so do all the guests. Such a great idea for a venue too. Just perfect! Congratulations to the happy couple xx

  3. Congrats Jess and Carl all the best for a bright and happy future from Michele in Te Aroha

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