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Amber and Marina

We're absolutely in love with this beautiful wedding of Amber and Marina! Read their love story below...

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How did your love story begin?

It all started in a land far far away, hahaha. We met in Beijing China, through mutual friends; it was a sparks-flying, soul-mate, first-sight kinda love. Cheesy but true.

Tell us about the proposal

Amber: I proposed, with the help of photographer Duane Smith. I had arranged a couple's photo-shoot as a “Valentines Day gift” or so Marina thought. Duane & I coordinated the perfect moment for the proposal in Deer Park. Again a little cheesy, but the couple's shoot turned engagement shoot, I say rather clever….

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How did you find the planning process? Did you make use of SAWeddings.co.za?

The planning process was a little stressy. We chose to do everything ourselves and, being very busy at work, we struggled a little to find the time to get everything done. We definitely used SA Weddings, soooo helpful.

Where did you draw your planning inspiration from?

Everywhere!! Pinterest, wedding blogs such at yours etc but with all the ideas out there, it’s easy to get carried away - we just focused on the things that were important to us and chose the things we both liked.

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What was the most memorable and special part of your wedding day?

The confetti throwing - The Alphen has a stone pathway surrounded by flowering shrubs where all our guests lined up. Walking together hand in hand surrounded by all our friends and family, the excitement, the joy, the love, it was so super special.

What was your wedding theme (if you had one) and why did you choose it?

We really wanted to just be surrounded by nature and greenery. We went with wood green and a touch of blue. The Alphen is such a beautiful venue and we had the most beautiful weather - the transparent marquee was the perfect pick to showcase the beauty of the garden, trees and blue skies.

What was your inspiration behind your wedding dress as well as the bridesmaids' dresses?

Honestly we both didn’t fuss too much about the dress. We both wanted something, flattering, elegant, but comfortable.

Amber: The first designer I went to was Elbeth Gills, and the first dress I tried on was the dress I chose.

Marina: I had a one-piece made, to show I wear the pants in the relationship, heheh, only jokes. All our bridesmaids were from overseas and coordinating dresses sounded like a nightmare, so we picked a few shades of blue and let everyone just rock out their own personality and style.

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Your decor and flowers: Do you have a specific reason why you chose what you did?

We just went with what we love, we were a little nervous that things wouldn’t match and apprehensive on how it would all come together, but my mom always said to choose the things that you love, and you will see that it always ends up fitting together.

Did you Incorporate any DIY items?

Yes a few small things: we did our own edible flower confetti packs, string table seating with guests’ names, which were replaced with a Polaroid picture, also CD cookie sleeves with the most delicious gooey chocolate chip cookie as wedding favors.

What song did you choose for your opening dance and why?

Dancing by Elisa. Marina is Italian and Elisa is her favorite artist, it’s a beautiful song, it reminds us of a lot of special moments we shared.

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What is your favourite, will-never-forget memory of your big day?

All the friends and family that traveled from all around the world to share the day with us, like China, Canada, Italy, the UK, USA and all around SA. So special, so much fun, so much happiness.

Any advice for other brides-to-be who are planning their big day?

Just enjoy it, it’s sooo much planning and detail and it goes by too fast. Enjoy the day, have no regrets, don’t sweat the small stuff, oh and plan to double your original budget, hahah.

Did you go on honeymoon and if so, where did you go?

We went to the Maldives, we were on a small yacht for a few days of sailing, and then a few days in a resort, Vilamendhoo

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