Sustainable Styled Wedding
Cocoon House

About five years ago I had an idea about doing a sustainable, styled wedding photo shoot at an Auckland wedding venue. After thinking and talking about doing it for ages, a few stops and starts, and lockdown interruptions, my vision has finally become a reality. Woohoo! As well as being a wedding photographer, I volunteer in one of Dove Hospice‘s charity stores because buying second hand as a way to preserve the planet and giving back to the community are really important to me. Dove fully supported me in doing this shoot by allowing me to borrow whatever I needed from their six charity stores. My friend and fellow volunteer, Paul and I spent hours visiting their stores collecting the fabulous, funky and colourful pre-loved things that give this shoot a fun, quirky and contemporary vibe.

This is a photo from a sustainable styled wedding shoot by Mala Photography. an Auckland based wedding photographer. This photo was taken at Cocoon House, an upmarket, boutique style wedding venue in Auckland. In this photo an untraditionally dressed Bride and Groom are holding hands, looking at each other and laughing their heads off. They are happy and joyful on their wedding day during their wedding ceremony at Cocoon House.Shopping for and styling your wedding with second hand stuff is so much fun with the bonus of being eco-friendly. Most of all, I want you to feel like you can do your wedding, your way and have a blast in the process. Here comes a whole-lotta fab ‘n’ funky wedding inspo for ya… The gold, vintage dress and black heels are pre-loved from Dove Hospice stores. As are the blue blazer and brown shoes below this cool mural in the atrium at Cocoon House. I’ve got to say, this is one heck of a venue for a wedding. It’s so unique and filled with an impressive collection of artwork! Our fantastic models, Nura and Eddie are a real couple with the perfect personalities and sense of adventure for this shoot. Made Up by Naeema did their make up and Jaime Randell did their hair. They were spot-on in creating the contemporary, edgy look I was after. Pretty Posies created these astonishing floral installations in the ceremonial area. They also did three bouquets and button-holes for the shoot. All of them striking and stunning. In over ten years of shooting weddings, I’ve never seen florals like this. Also styling the atrium was Impressions with their gold stands, glassware and candles.A few days before this shoot I went location scouting in Freemans Bay around Cocoon House and found this fabulous spot. This black wall with ivy growing all over it was the perfect backdrop for some fun, quirky shots. More photos out on location at Victoria Park Market. This cheeky shot of Eddie and Nura showing off their wedding rings is one of my faves from this shoot.  Eddie and Nura are dancers so I had to gets some shots of them showing us their moves. They totally smashed it! Back at Cocoon House for an outfit change and part two of the shoot. Couples often have a different outfit to change into for their wedding reception. Something that’s more comfortable and easier to mix ‘n’ mingle, and dance in. The cool map plates, silver cutlery, champagne flutes, orange napkins, cake stands, vases, fishbowls and candelabra used by Impressions and Pretty Posies in styling the wedding table for this shoot so beautifully at Cocoon House are all from Dove Hospice charity stores. Artist and wedding stationery designer, Curiously Creative and I talked about wedding favours before this shoot. These are things that are often left behind and wasted. So, for this shoot with sustainability in mind, there’s a thank you card telling guests that in lieu of wedding favours a donation has been made to charity instead. I’ve seen this at weddings I’ve photographed. Cool, huh?! Keeping with the theme of living consciously and sustainably, Wise Boys, my favourite vegan take-away bar came onboard with burgers and fries for our wedding table and location shoot. If I was planning my wedding now, I’d be getting the Wise Boys food truck along, that’s for sure.  Hearts in Blossom made the most incredible vegetarian cupcakes I’ve ever seen. Look at those colours! They were flippin’ delish! They cater for all dietary requirements including vegan on request.  Working alongside me on the day was Mata Films, among the best in the biz when it comes to wedding videography. We had lots of fun shooting Eddie and Nura munching on vegan burgers and fries from Wise Boys, running around with smoke bombs and popping champers.

Here’s the team that came together to support Dove Hospice and do our bit for the planet. All of these vendors totally rock. I’ve had the best time working them all:
Photography & Shoot Planning: Mala Patel – Mala Photography
Models: Nura & Eddie Lo
Models’ clothes, shoes & accessories: Dove Hospice charity stores
Crockery, cutlery, glassware, table linen: Dove Hospice charity stores
Photo shoot venue: Cocoon House
Videography: Mata Films
Make-up artist: Made Up By Naeema
Hair Stylist: Jaime Randell
Wedding Stationery Designer: Curiously Creative
Event Stylist/Decorator: Impressions
Florist: Pretty Posies
Cupcake Maker: Hearts in Blossom
Burgers and Fries: Wise Boys

If you’re planning a wedding in Auckland or anywhere in New Zealand and would like to get in touch with me about photographing your big day, head over to my Contact Page and and get in touch.


Phone: +64 9 214 9407

Mobile: +64 21 771 334