I have always thought that this was the most beautiful man I have ever seen. We met at a wine festival about 2 years ago. We were friends ever since, seeing each other from time to time at braai's with mutual friends. I NEVER DREAMED that this would one day become my husband!
But then, in August 2016 I started working at their family business. At that point I was staying in Ceres and decided to move to Wolseley. In his attempts to try and make me feel welcome in the community, he started visiting me all the more often! As the saying goes: "Denial isn't just a river in Egypt", we were both secretly interested but seriously in denial. One evening he left and the Scripture from Song of Solomon suddenly popped into my head: I have found the one whom my soul loves. Denial!
Some time that I was invited to a wedding and decided to invite him to come along.
That was the night that I realized that I was in love. Very much in love. The next day he came over for coffee and after a little while, he confessed that he couldn't deny the fact that he liked me (a lot) or ignore all the signs he has been given. We were together since then and got engaged 2 months later.
We attended a 21st on a farm in Wilderness the December after we got together. It was a weekend thing so we spent the weekend with some of my dearest friends.
The Sunday morning my friend told me to were something pretty as we would go to a fancy cocktail bar later that day. We were all having coffee outside on the deck when my very jittery then-boyfriend suddenly stood up and asked me to please walk with him - he wants to show me something. I was a bit confused but joined. There was a little walkway (I haven't spotted it all weekend) and it went down to a lapa between the trees. When we approached I saw champagne and fairy lights on the table. He turned around and told me he wanted to give me something - a key-holder.
It was a laser cut circle with the words: Chantal, trou met my?
When I looked up he was on his knees with the biggest smile! Obviously I said yes!
It was so special to have friends along to celebrate our engagement - at the fancy cocktail bar! :)
We got married in Prince Alfred Hamlet in April. For me the highlights was definitely the preparation and having my mom, sister and dearest friend with me.
The most memorable moments for me was Frans' face when I walked down the aisle and the unbelievable cheer when "he could kiss his bride". Wow! The whole ceremony was so special! We also had so much fun with the photo's afterwards. At one point I had to jump on his back so he could carry me down into the dam. What people wouldn't do for a good photo...
Obviously our first dance as Mr. and Mrs. Viljoen was also a huge highlight!
What a special day to spend with friends and family.
We did go on honeymoon yes - to the Garden Route! During our first week in Plett, we did all kinds of fun things - rowing on the Keurbooms River with a picnic, Bungy jumping, riding scooters in the Knysna Forest, a sunset sailing trip through the Knysna heads, eating oysters for the first time... this is just naming a few!
We spent our second week in Struis Bay just CHILLING. So much fun!
I had an Oleg Cassini wedding dress that was purchased through Bride & Co. It had quite a lot of detail and layers and to keep the attention on that, I decided to keep it very simple in regards to my jewellery and hair. I bought large pearl studs from Woolies and wore my promise ring that Frans gave me at out engagement (we were waiting for the actual engagement ring to be finished by the jeweller).
My hair (done by Hairport Beaury) was in an updo with a type of a messy bun to try and get away from the very classic bridal look. They also did my make-up and this too was a more dramatic look than classic bridal.
My shoes were nude satin-look high heels.
We got married at Elim Wedding Venue about 5km outside of Prince Alfred Hamlet. It is a rustic venue (which was exactly what we wanted). There is no accommodation on the farm yet, so most of our guests stayed over in Hamlet or Ceres.
Since there was very little time to plan and prepare for the wedding, there was not much regime going on. I tried to eat as healthy as I possibly could to ensure my dress were still a perfect fit, I applied a lot (a LOT) of deep treatment to my hair and facial was also important. This was about it :)
As i've mentioned, we full-out went for a rustic feel at our wedding. Our decor was very simple. Lots of Proteas and fynbos with roses and proteas in my hand boquet. on the tables we had hessian runners with wooden crates with the flowers and fynbos and all kinds of glass containers (also with hessian string or lace or crochet hearts) with candles in them.
The groom wore a black suit from Bride & Co with a skinny black tie and a white shirt, and the groomsmen wore black pants, white shirts, black suspenders and mint colored bow ties (the bow ties matched the bridesmaids' dresses).
I love the color mint! So that's all I had to tell my bridesmaids. Their dresses had to match in color only - I wasn't too worried about the design - we all have very similar taste so I was very comfortable to send them into the shop to pick out their own dresses! at the end of the day, they both picked dresses, also from Bride & Co, with exact matching color and at the end the design were similar as well. I preferred that my bridesmaids were comfortable in their dresses and that they looked great in them :)
Our marriage officer was Frans' cousin, Braam Peens. He is a pastor in Benoni. It was awesome for us to be able to keep it in the family, plus, bonus, he was a GREAT speaker!
Our photographer was the amazing Anel Nortier. She is a kind and sweet person who makes you feel at ease in front of the camera. We loved working with her and instantly felt like she was a friend too! I would recommend her any and everyday!
Our video was done by Jaco Snyman. We loved the style and got exactly what we wanted.
We did not make use of a photo booth, but the owner of our wedding venue had a nice red couch that worked perfectly for our guests!
I did not make use of a traditional wedding planner. In fact, I had something much better! My mother and her friend are amazing at decor and organizing - and I regret nothing! It was a bonding experience too :) I was so blessed to be able to have people help me who know and understand what I like.
Our wedding transport also happened so easy! Frans' uncle (we call him Oom Dirk Louw) has an ooooold Citroën (blue with a white roof) which pretty much goes as a vintage car... I love vintage cars! One day he came to our office with the car, and I jokingly asked Frans if we could use it as a wedding car. What I didn't know, was that they were making jokes about using it as a wedding car before I entered the room, and thought I would hate the idea!
Our food was prepared by the owner of our wedding venue (Nicolene Pienaar). She was a hospitality teacher at the school in Ceres and really makes fantastic food!
Our wedding cake was made by my friend, Marga Huddlestone. She is great at baking and when we saw some of her previous creations, she was an obvious choice! We loved the idea of the naked-look cake and she absolutely nailed it.
Our wedding invitation was done by Frans' cousin Johan - he helped us with the website design. With the invitation being electronic, we had very little stationery for printing.
At the ceremony we had some info like song lyrics and names printed on brown paper - Frans' mother designed them for us and also did the printing.
We had little wooden disks tied to our wedding thank-you-gifts that had laser cut F & C engraved - this was done by Cape Lazer Creationz in Ceres.
Lastly we had names on the tables which my sister (bridesmaid!) printed and folded.
That was basically it! :)
We loved the party! Luckily Frans can dance so we did practice a bit beforehand, but we did not take any official lessons. Our sound was done by Oom Johan Viljoen - who does sound at various dances, parties, and even the local church :)
Thanks to the DJ there was lots and lots of "sokkie treffers" so the dancefloor remained packed as far as we can remember!