Our beginnings were rather ordinary. We'd been friends from a disatance for a few years when Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland hit cinimas. As it happened all our friends had been to watch it already so we decided to go watch it together. From then we started spending time together and before I knew it I was being invited to a family holiday. And as they say...the rest is history.
It was the evening of my birthday 2016. I thought Niels had all but forgotten about my birthday and was busy making coffee when he came up behind me and handed me a ring box. Confused, I asked "Is this what I think it is?" To which he replied "Open it and find out."
I think I squeeled for 5 minutes.
For us the day was full of highlights and surprises.
Leaving the preparation guest house proved to be a funny challenge as all the sprinklers were on. After trying two exits the turned sprinklers were turned off and we exited through the back pathway as the staff cheered us on.
To combat the late December heat we had an ice cream cart with six flavours and toppings during the cocktail hour. I heard from more than one person that it was quite a hit.
The ceremony was very different to anything anyone has ever experienced before, it included vows said over a quartz aothing stone, a wine union ceremony and a handfasting in which our siblings tied the ribbons around our wrists. It was exactly the ceremony I had always dreamed about.
The first dance was also a highlight. We used two of our favourite songs, Parlotones "I'll be there" and Elvis's "Jailhouse Rock".We started with a slow box-rumba, then switched to a boogie, with a vinyl scratch between the two songs which had everyone genuinely worried that something had gone wrong. It was so much fun and surprised everyone as we're usually the couple that can't dance. We've secretly been taking dance lessons for the last two years in preparation for this day.
Our cake baker surprised us by making our cake blue and purple layers of lemonade cake inside a naked cake. She also specially baked a milktart cake so we could also celebrate our wedding day with my husband's parents who were celebrating their 37th wedding anniversary that day.
My niece played two violin pieces for us that day, "Cannon in D" when we were introduced as Mr and Mrs Nilsson and 1000 Years when we cut our cake, this was really special for us as she specially chose the pieces herself.
To mention but a few...
We decided to postpone our honeymoon till the end of January to allow the holiday makers to disperse and the cost of accommodation to come down a bit. But we plan on going on an epic road trip to Port Elizabeth, making stops along the way to visit landmarks such as The Big Tree and The Wagon Museum and finally stopping off at Addo Elephant Park.
Updates to follow...
My wedding dress was a classic A-line, soft white, lace dress with ruching and beadwork over the bodice and a chapel length train. I then found wide embroidered lace which I used to finish off the hem of the dress. I added a layered tulle petticoat with shades which ranged from light turquoise at the top, through to dark blue, purple and burgundy at the bottom. It was a colourful surprise for guests as initially one could not see the petticoat under the dress.
The veil was a wispy soft white mesh with some of the flowers from my dress over the comb, I loved how ethereal it was.
I wore burgundy Mary-Jane style shoes with a block heel and a lace cut-out pattern around the sides which matched the bottom layer of my petticoat perfectly.
Jewelry consisted of a moonstone and silver pendant on a silver chain and cubic zirconia earings which I borrowed from my sister...my something borrowed. Last but not least, after the ceremony, my ring. A white gold and diamond ring, particularly special to me as the centre stone has been passed down through five generations, each one making it their own.
Make-up was light pink and purple eye-shadow with nude blush and lipstick, finished off with waterproof mascara (for the happy tears) and a setting spray. I opted to wear contact lenses for the special day and was pleasantly surprised by how comfortable they were.
On account of the temperature I decided on an up style. I adored the messy, curly style which also had a side mini-plait incorporated.
The completed look reflected my personality perfectly, a little bit classic, a little bit rock 'n roll and whole lot of uniqueness.
We got married at Domaine Brahms in Paarl. We chose our venue for the friendly service and magical surroundings. From the word go the staff were excellent and played a crucial part in making my dream wedding a reality.
Our guest traveled mostly from Cape Town, some came all the way from Pretoria to be there. The wedding party however, stayed over at The Garden Shed in Wellington. It was fantastic as we basically had the place to ourselves, the atmosphere was so relaxed and the setting was stunning.
I pride myself on being low maintenance so the beauty regime was nothing special.
I started going to gym on a regular basis to tone up and ensure that I'd fit into my dress. Skin care consisted simply of my body wash and some hand lotion and of course sun screen to prevent getting burnt before the wedding, which happened anyways *sigh*
We always try to eat healthy so not much changed in the lead up to the wedding.
A week before the wedding I visited my favorite spa for an eyebrow wax and pedicure. Then two days before the wedding I got a French manicure.
On the day of the wedding I used a body scrub and facial scrub.
Our décor was simple but elegant.
For the tables we went with white damask table clothes and purple crushed satin runners. In the center of each table was a mirror with three vases of varying heights on top. Blue and purple orchids floated in water inside the vases. We also chose rose gold underplates on top of which we put a menu folded in a white napkin. The menus were designed to mimic our wedding invites.
For the hall we rented purple and blue uplights which created a magical glow to the room. We also positioned torched willow along one wall to extend the forest motif of the wall paper that the venue had in one section. On the stairs we placed jars with candles inside to create a romantic feel. To add the final touch we hung silver draping behind the main table which further accentuated the fully draped venue.
The venue also had a lovely nook with two wingback chairs, a sewing table and decal against one wall that read "Time is not measured by minutes, but moments"
The groom decided that he wanted something a little different...which was basically the theme of our entire wedding.
He looked dapper in a dark silver suit with a white shirt, teal waistcoat and a teal tie that we rented from Mr Suit Hire and a grey top hat purchased from Haritons.
In dark silver pants and white shirts with a black and grey bowtie, suspenders and a fedora hat, the groomsmen looked like something out of the Godfather movie.
My bridesmaids wore full length teal dresses with a slight gather under and over the bust, each of their dresses had a different neckline and sleeves. This was paired with dark silver shoes and jewelry of their choice.
The look is something I found on Google and was made by Simply Este.
We found a fantastic marriage officer in Rev. Linda Everitt. She tailored our ceremony to our taste to create something was truly special for us.
Suzette Hilarides from Memento Photography was our primary photographer and Alida Olivier from Alida Olivier Photography was our second shooter. Together they formed an awesome photography team that went above an beyond the call of duty, from helping the gentlemen fasten their suspenders to reminding the bride to put on her jewelry. They also created an energetic atmosphere that made all feel comfortable with just being themselves.
We also had a green screen photo booth linked on Twitter that would add exotic backdrops to the uploaded photos.
My planning team consisted of myself, my now husband, my mother and my sister. The women in my family have planned and executed all their own weddings.When it was time to plan mine it was an obvious choice on who I needed to enlist to help put together my dream wedding. My husband of course also played a crucial role in the planning as he gave valuable input on every detail of our special day.
We knew from the beginning that we wanted a limo to transport the bridal party from the guest house to the venue. We found a charming 1936 Chev Limo. The driver, Roger was a perfect gentleman, helping the ladies into and out of the vehicle. My now husband and I also took photos with in the car after the ceremony where we enjoyed a glass of sparkling wine that Classic Tours provided.
The food for our wedding was provided by the venue, Domaine Brahms. We decided on the buffet option so as to provide the most variety for our guests. From starters to dessert is was delicious, people went back for seconds and thirds.
The cake was provided by Janica from Marnica Cakez. The mint crisp and Turkish delight cake pops were moist and delicious to the last bite and the lemonade top tier was a colourful surprise. At first glance it looked like a regular naked cake however, when we cut into it we were greeted by layers of blue and purple cake. She was also kind enough to provide us with a milktart cake to help celebrate my in-laws wedding anniversary which was the same day.
Our wedding invites were designed and printed by Nifty's and our programs and menus were designed and printed by Vanessa from PostNet Plattekloof.
As mentioned before we started dance lessons two years prior to the wedding which meant we were very comfortable with dancing by the time our first dance rolled around.
The sound and lighting was provided by Gearhouse South Africa.
We decided on a DJ for our reception and requested that all our guests request a song that they wanted to hear on the night.
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Domaine Brahms, a hidden gem in the heart of Paarl & Wellington Winelands area.