One week before he moved abroad for his Master’s degree we met very briefly in the gym, being introduced by a mutual friend. Knowing that he was moving away he did not pay much attention at first and wasn’t looking to ‘meet’ anyone.
Shortly after him being oversees we began to chat on Facebook, which led to Whatsapp, which led to hours on end of Skyping every night. Soon we knew each other better than our own families did. We started a long distance relationship which carried on when he returned to SA one year later. In that time I managed to visit him abroad once, and him me, surprising me on my birthday.
A surprise visit to an isolated Karoo ‘getaway’ weekend; on the day of the proposal I came out the shower in the chalet, Phillip was missing, instead I found a scrap of paper with directions to a secret lookout point in the desert. I finished up and got in the car. Arriving at the location to find a fully set table with champagne, overlooking the valley, with the sun setting on the dusty horizon. He was standing there waiting for me next to an old wooden cross that overlooked the landscape. After the proposal we were served a specially organised meal under millions of stars. Just the two of us and the desert.
It is difficult to point out single moments of the weekend because I honestly feel that the entire weekend and day was perfect from the first second until the last. However I will list it as follows in no particular order, by looking back at the weekend from beginning to end: 1. The first memorable moment was when all the guests drove to the 'cliff' where we kicked off the weekend with sun-downers overlooking the entire Kuthaba Bush Lodge. 2. The second 'highlight' would be the bonfires on the Friday evening and all the guests having a great time with amazing food. 3. The third memorable moment would be when my sister and I walked to our room soaking wet after an unplanned late night dip in the pool, laughing and enjoying the moment. 4. The 4th memorable moment I would say was seeing how my bridesmaids made jokes and laughed whilst having their make-up and hair done. 5. The 5th thing I would highlight is when my dad saw me for the first time. 6. Moment number 6 I would say is when we had the photo session in the bush. 7. Number 7 would be the speeches. Our speeches was short and sweet and it felt so unreal and amazing to sit next to my best friend/ husband surrounded by all our friends and family. 8. Number 8 is the father daughter dance. During that moment it felt like it was just me and my dad, smiling at each other, dancing and singing along to butterfly kisses. 9. And lastly it would be the dancing and enjoying the rest of the evening with the guests.
Our time in South Africa was limited because of my husband's responsibilities to get back to his job in the Congo. We therefore decided to postpone the honeymoon unitl after his contract in the Congo which was two months later. Being away from home for so long we wanted to enjoy the best of home which is the bushveld. We stayed at a private lodge close to the Kruger National Park where we had the entire lodge for ourselves. The accommodation was luxury safari tents in the bush where wild animals came to drink water and feed. We booked activities like tiger Ffshing and drove around to see and visit beautiful places each day and ended each day with a braai and some wine.
Our main wedding colours were sage green, blush pink and gold. The entire wedding, from ceremony to the reception, was outside in the bushveld under the open African skies. With our wedding colours/ theme I wanted to bring that touch of class to the wild bushveld which ended up looking amazing. My wedding dress was designed and made by Kobus Rautenbach and it was a two piece dress covered in beautiful soft lace. A part of my middle was open and the top had long lace sleeves. My skirt was long and 'flowy' and for the evening I had a party skirt which was a mini version of the long skirt. My hair was made up in a high bun with a mini flower crown around the bun (hair done by captivating mobile hairstylist) and my make-up was soft and natural (done by beautiful change). My wedding shoes was rose gold and sparkly and the only jewellery I wore was small diamond ear-rings which my dad bought my mom when I was born.
Our wedding was held at the amazing Kuthaba Bush Lodge in Limpopo. Phillip and I travel a lot therefore we wanted to have an entire weekend to make sure we have enough time with all our friends and family. 90% of our guests stayed over at Kuthaba from the Friday evening until the Sunday morning.
My husband and I lived in Kinshasa in the Congo for 13months during that time, so my access to any beauty facilities were limited. We went to the Pullman Hotel's gym every night and played squash about 3 times a week. I had done teeth whitening in 2013, but nothing else for the big day.
The ceremony was held in a big outside boma area with a bon fire in the middle. The tables was placed in a star formation around the boma with white table cloths, blush pink fluffy table runners and napkins, long floral garlands stretching from the one end of the table to the other end with lots of greenery, blush pink roses, golden rod etc. Small gold votives with tealight candles was places on the tables alongside the floral garlands to create that perfect ambience under the African stars. To add that touch of elegance I hired gold Tiffany chairs, gold cutlery and gold under-plates. We also rented 10x 10m fairy lights which was draped all around the boma area. White chinese lanters hanged high above our heads. Extra fire pits which we placed outside the boma area surrounded by chairs...
The groom wore light grey pants, a white button shirt, a light grey waist coat with a light blue tie and brown shoes. The groomsmen wore light brown pants, white button shirts, olive green/ gold ties, brown suspenders and brown shoes. The pants and shirts we bought at Woolworth, The groom's tie and waist coat was bought at Edgars. The suspenders was bought online and the groomsmen's ties was bought in a small tie shop in Menlyn Mall.
My bridesmaids wore sage green, knee length lace dresses made by Gelique with blush pink heels.
Our marriage officer was Ds. Rinus Wassermann form NG Church, Wierdapark, Centurion.
Our photographer was the amazing Susan du Toit from Susan du Toit Photography. I have had my eye on her for a long time and was over the moon when I got the opportunity to book her for my wedding. We didn't have a videographer, but we hired the Magic Photo-booth from The Magic Photo-booth Company which the guests enjoyed while we were out busy with the couple shoot.
I had quite a lot of time on my hands whilst living in the Congo, so I did all the planning etc. by myself. On the day however the staff at Kuthaba Bush Lodge was amazing to make sure everything goes according to plan.
Kuthaba Bush Lodge has an old safari cruser which was at our disposal for the transport of about 30 guests/ people. The ceremony was held under a giant old fig tree which was about 15min drive from the reception area, therefore we arranged that guests with high clearance vehicles drive themselves and other guests who needed high clearance transport to the ceremony area. Our 9 international guests enjoyed the safari truck very much and the groom and his men also drove with the safari truck to the ceremony area. Myself and my bridesmaids however drove with bakkies which had air-con in to prevent our make-up from running due to the warm bushveld sun.
On the Friday evening we had a Spit Braai which we rented at a butchery. On the evening of the wedding and the Sunday morning Kuthaba Bush Lodge prepared and served delicious food. Our wedding cake was made by a lady named Dot Sillifant, firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am a graphic designer so I designed and printed all our stationary etc.
With living in the Congo during that time we didn't have any access to a dance studio, so we practiced on our own in the living room a in the time leading up to the wedding. We had a great DJ (Gauteng DJ), and the party was perfect! We wanted to keep the formalities short and sweet so that the dancing etc can start early and so that people can enjoy every moment. Our guests and ourselves had a great time filled with lots of laughter and dancing.
Having firm roots in the photography industry, we understand the Number One rule for weddings: You Only Get One Chance!
Kuthaba Bush Lodge is a private game reserve situated near Modimolle, in the Limpopo Province and forms part of the serene Waterberg Mountain Range, renowned for its exquisite ...