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Wild and free: Victoria Florists

Big, beautiful, wild, loose and free, is how Victoria Florists describes the bridal bouquets of now.


“Dried and silk flowers woven with fresh blooms are spot on trend,” says owner Leanne Lovell. A bouquet of a fresh white king protea, silk hydrangeas and dried wild flowers springs to mind.

“It’s very natural now, with autumnal, muted palettes of nature. Champagne, taupe, cinnamon and cream with a trail of sheer linen. We’re doing wrist corsages for the mother of the bride, and trailing greenery with a few flowers on the tables.”

Victoria Florists adapts to the season for value for money, from an absolutely beautiful display.

“Bring along your Pinterest or Instagram dreams for our innovative team to create from. We have 100 years’ experience between us!”

107 Idris Road, Bryndwr, Christchurch
(03) 351 7444 |


Best dressed guest

With few recent occasions to dress up for, weddings are the perfect events to whip out your glad rags. Here is Metropol’s style inspiration for the upcoming season.


Cut out and puff sleeves are on trend. Aje Mimosa Midi Cutout Dress


Sunnies are essential. Gucci


Respectably stylish in beige. Saba Juan Check Jacket


Loafers fit any dress code. Common People


Wedding blues. Saba


Tie your look together. Barker’s Linen Tie


Gold details delight. Karen Walker 9ct Arrow Fob Chain


Strappy and monochrome, tick! Wynn Hamlyn Layered Slip Dress


Block heels for comfort, snake print for style. Miss Wilson Ginger Heel in Rose Python


Florals and weddings are a perfect pair. The Vampire’s Wife The Falconetti Dress


Feminine and floaty forever. Trelise Cooper Fame and Frills Dress


Long and silky is made for formality. Camilla & Marc Abbie Gown




From tails and tuxes to three pieces, business and lounge suits. There’s plenty to choose from to match your wedding theme, dress code and locations. Here are Metropol’s tips for suiting up, in style.


Mix it up. Working Style


Blue adds a contemporary touch. Saba Gomez Jacket.


“Oxfords, not brogues.” The right shoes. RM Williams Kintore


A three piece is always a winner. Barkers Mayfair ZQ Waistcoat, Jacket and Trousers


Dapper shades are a must. Moscot Dudel Sun


Ignite the scenes with a signature scent. Byredo Sellier from Mecca


The classic. Working Style Delon Peak Lapel Dinner Suit.


Add a touch of colour with a pocketsquare. Working Style


Don’t be late! Breitling Navitimer 1 Automatic 41


Romance in the city: The Milton Street Substation

Step inside the green doors of this ex-power station on the fringe of Christchurch’s city centre and you are transported to an industrial chic wonderland. The Milton Street Substation is a unique venue which provides a contemporary canvas for your wedding or event.



PHOTO: Susannah Blatchford

Despite being close to 100 years old, a clever makeover of the stunning Sydenham building has both preserved its heritage charm while transforming it to include modern comforts.

Containing different zones across a large entrance foyer, dance floor space, mezzanine floor, sun-trap balcony and rear courtyard – couples and hosts can style the venue to suit whatever their day includes.

Owners Clark Mauger and Romy Gunatunga offer a more relaxed approach, allowing guests freedom to use whichever suppliers they wish to bring their event to life.

“People are looking for a different format these days. Many are wanting a celebration/party focus rather than your traditional wedding. Not only to give their guests a new experience, but it is usually less expensive too,” says Clark.

Previous weddings held here have included formal sit down dinners, more casual walk ‘n’ fork affairs – and even surprise weddings! A double decker bar truck has also been parked inside, and catered by food trucks in the courtyard!

“It’s very versatile for different uses,” says Clark. “We wanted it to be accessible and easy for people, so we don’t charge extras for corkage or tie you into specific suppliers; we’ve kept it simple and let people do what they want and be creative.”

Amenities have been added to the building to allow caterers and bar staff to set up and prepare food and drinks, and beautifully renovated powder rooms add a touch of luxury, too.

A large, sunny balcony leads from the mezzanine and overlooks the paved courtyard, which is resplendent with festoon lights, elegant wine barrel bar leaners and planter boxers.

As a venue, it can host up to 290 people. For weddings, the beautiful upstairs mezzanine can host 100 people for a sit down dinner, or for those looking for a more relaxed party style wedding, 150 or more can be easily accommodated.

PHOTO: Susannah Blatchford

“The building has so much character, it doesn’t need too much in the way of styling,” Clark says of features like the iconic red brick, glossy black steel staircases and fluted, wavy tin ceiling.

The unique character is an inimitable backdrop for photos, yet its city fringe location – just off the Brougham Street end of Colombo Street – also means couples can easily whip up to the Port Hills or into the Botanic Gardens and city centre for photos.


PHOTO: Susannah Blatchford

With the ability to host both the ceremony and reception indoors the venue is also ideal for winter weddings, and bookings are filling up fast for 2022.

Contact Venue Manager Alex Balchin on 027 445 5588 or via for a viewing.


What can your genes say about your health? Unichem Cashel

Did you know your DNA can provide a blueprint for your health? And a new genetic testing service at Unichem Cashel can help people make better choices about their health, with trained pharmacists able to offer personal advice based on your genetic makeup.

Head Pharmacist Annabel Turley.


The inner-city pharmacy is now home to Ingeneous DNA testing, which uses specialised sequence testing to provide insights and information that you can act on to improve your health and wellbeing.

Head Pharmacist Annabel Turley has completed specialist training to bring Ingenous to Canterbury, as she herself has used genetic testing to improve her health.

“One of the reasons I got into genetic testing is because there is some inherited conditions in my family, and identifying those at a genetic level allows me to make lifestyle changes which can reduce my chances of the conditions developing.”

Ingeneous is designed to help you make better choices with personalised advice, designed for your unique genetic make-up. Its founder, Dr Libby Lindsay, developed the service after years of battling eczema, migraines, lactose intolerance, depression and infertility.

“Understanding your genetic blueprint can have a profound impact on your wellbeing,” she says. “When I finally did a DNA test I learnt how I could improve my health by understanding how my body responded to diet, exercise, lifestyle and supplements. Having this personalised genetic roadmap changed my life.”

While our genes are fixed, environmental and lifestyle factors can influence how they are expressed, which is why Ingeneous reports and recommendations are designed to be useful and practical, says Dr Lindsay.

“I want to get the word out that your quality of life can be improved. One of the best ways of really knowing our health potential lies within our genes.”


Gorgeous grazing: Four Square Hanmer Springs

Stunning Hanmer Springs, what a place to get married! And at the heart of your beautiful location is Four Square Hanmer Springs catering which has a renowned talent for creating beautiful-looking and delicious-tasting grazing platters.



They can do pre-wedding snacks for the bridal party, larger platters for all your guests, and a platter or two of little something for a pick-me-up the next day.



They don’t skimp on their hot or cold delicious treats, made from seasonal ingredients, specialty cheeses, cured meats, fresh fruits, chutneys, hummus and pâté. All requirements are catered for – vegetarian, keto, vegan and gluten-free.


Four Square Hanmer Springs; grazing platters are their thing, for any kind or size of gathering.

Phone: (03) 315 7190


Maid to wear

Co-ordinating bridesmaid outfits can be tricky business. Deciding to match or mix styles and colours – and getting a universal seal of approval – can be tough work. Here is Metropol’s bridesmaid style inspiration.

Juliette Hogan Amaya Pleat Dress


Mix it up – Who said all the bridesmaids had to match? Not us! Women come in all shapes and sizes, so too, do outfits – so why not give your girls a colour palette to work from and see what different styles they come up with. This way, they’ll love what they wear, too!


Ruby Ronnie Silk Dress


Pattern party – Embrace opulent fabrics and fun patterns by adorning your bridal party in patterns. With so many stunning florals and textures around at the moment, options abound. Your photos will look bright and fun, too.


Silk & Steel Matriach Hoop Earrings


Big day details – Whether you opt for mixing or matching, co-ordinating small details like accessories not only pulls the final look together, but can leave your bridesmaids with a cute keepsake, too. Necklaces, earrings and rings are all great ideas.


Setting the scene

A defining feature of planning and organising a wedding is choosing a theme or style for the big day, which underpins the details on everything from invitations, to ceremony set-ups, reception tablescapes and venue styling. Metropol has rounded up three trends tipped to influence weddings in 2021 and beyond.



Embracing rustic and vintage vibes is nothing new when it comes to wedding décor, but the style endures. Mismatched and kitschy glassware and crockery create a fun yet fashionable atmosphere, and when applied to furniture and furnishings can make attaining the tables and seating easier than taking a more uniform approach.

More and more couples are leaning into bold colourful weddings themes which feature less creams and white and more fresh, nature-driven hues. Said to be bright, fun and happy – these palettes are present on everything from invites and stationary, to décor, tablescapes and food.

This might sound silly, given that flowers are synonymous with weddings, but blooms fresh and dried really are taking centre stage in nuptial styling. From large roof hangings and table centrepieces to more modest bouquets and bunches – the power of flowers is unmatched.


Baked with love

Wedding planning has got some sweet relief as the side effects of the Covid-19 pandemic look to be slowing down. And when it comes to choosing one of the sweetest parts of your big day, Metropol has rounded up some of the biggest confections trends for the wedding season ahead.



According to wedding experts, edible pressed flowers are shaping up to be a major cake trend. That is, actual real flowers which can be eaten. Playing into the refined boho theme, edible flowers look especially beautiful when pressed into the icing.

As ceremonies and celebrations become more intimiate to avoid possible Covd-19 restrictions, cakes are also taking a downsize. According to, micro and single tier cakes are in vogue, and may be used just for cutting as guests enjoy an array of other desserts.

Piping is nice, but texture is looking to be on the wedding cake agenda this season. Created by imperfect markings (pictured), artistic patterns and designs, and detailing, texture is tipped by to stick around for a while, too.


Down the aisle and beyond

In wedding seasons marked by constant disruption and cancellations, when it comes to wedding dress design it seems brides to be are shirking tradition and focusing on personal style and versatility. According to those in the know, modern brides want a wedding wardrobe that can take them from ceremony to dancing with ease.


Jesus Period 219 Dress


The new grand: Lace, beading and thread work used to symbolise a grand wedding gown. Now, statement frocks are incorporating architectural elements to achieve a less is more aesthetic. Think refined frills and clean layers achieved with impeccable tailoring.


Trish Peng Abby Gown


Simply romantic: Bohemian bridal looks prevail for 2021 and beyond, with the poetic aesthetic exuding romance and femininity. Underpinned by one of bridal’s longest mainstays, lace, modern takes are seeing bolder laser cut designs emerge, or a delicate chantilly top worn over the dress. Low back designs with a row of buttons also add a touch of vintage to modern shapes.


Jesus Peiro 252 Dress and 37 / F Headdress


All in the details: Some brides are turning up the sophistication on simple silhouettes by adding elements of detail. Bold shoulders, intricate headbands and veils, and gloves are appearing in designer’s look books and on wedding aisles around the world.