In a world that promotes independence and perfection it truly takes a leap of faith to make the covenant commitment to spend the rest of your life with someone. A lead of faith that commenced for my husband Keagan and I on the 16th March 2018. Our wedding day was absolutely breath-taking.
Our ceremony was held in the water house at Oxbow Country Estate. A semi-outdoor venue nestled among the Willow trees and passing river. The large well-maintained gardens created a sense of being far away in a magical place. Our ceremony was beautifully accompanied by some rain which cleared up just as our guests exited for the throwing of rose petals. This short burst of rain meant we have incredible lighting for our photos but also a real sense of crisp new beginnings.
The speeches during our reception will forever be something I hold close to my heart, an opportunity for those closest to us to remind us of the other forms of love that we are blessed enough to experience. Also there is no setting quite like a wedding where the focus becomes solely about love, laughter, beauty, beginnings and hope. Nothing will ever compare to having all of our loved ones under one roof celebrating with us.
There were a few things that went wrong, like my Dad forgetting to lift the veil from over my face or hearing from our wedding coordinator that doves were not allowed on the property but had already been set up. Nonetheless, it is true what they say, over time all the moments and memories from your wedding day become happy ones. They either become stories we will laugh at or reminiscence with as we grow old together.
I have never been more happy, safe and at peace than I do as a married woman.
I simply love being a wife, and wouldn't change a single thing about our day.
Yes we did indeed, a wedding gift from my husbands parents to us we were able to honeymoon in Thailand.
We woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed on the Saturday after our wedding to jet-set off to Aonang where we spent 10 magnificent days getting used to calling each other husband and wife without blushing.
I wanted to go for something timeless and elegant. I also knew this would be the only time I could wear a 'princess' dress and intended on ding exactly that. My dress was hand-made by my Aunt Michel Mulcahy who has been a wedding dress designer for 30+ years in South Africa and then the UK.
I chose all my material, the underskirt was silk satin which has a shine to it at certain angles and also made the white of the dress look extra bright. The lace I selected was love at first sight, handmade lace flowers with diamante sown into and around them. This gave my dress subtle sparkle and depth. The scalloping was a more traditional lace with some of the flowers of the dress lace cut out and sown into it. I had a long veil which bordered the train of my dress, the lace on my train and the veil was symmetrical.
I luckily have the bust to make a very low bodice line still look appropriate. This was a struggle as we wanted to go as low as possible in the front and the back without the strapless support to lose its hold and overall structure. (p.s i didnt pull my dress up once - yay!). My shoes were about practicality and comfort as much as they were about being 'thee wedding shoes'. They did of course need to have their fair share of sparkle to fit in with my 'elegant princess' look.
I do make-up part time so I did my own make-up. My hair was done by my hairdresser Magda who is the owner of Hair by Magda in Irene, Pretoria. My hair was an up-do with intricate loose-platting and twisting to achieve body and class. Keeping in line with the elegant and timeless look I wore minimal jewelry, some beautiful Swarovski drop down earrings and a small tiara.
Wedding lingerie was a combination of goodies I received at my bachelorettes. This didn't matter as my husband and I both passed out after our wedding and woke up before the sun to catch out honeymoon flight.
Oxbow Country Estate.
Our family and close friends stayed at the venue with us. Some guests drove and others stayed stayed in lodges close by as our venue was fully booked out by our wedding party.
From the August before we got married which was 8 months, I lay in the sun for 15 minutes every day. This meant I had time to gradually get a lasting sun-kissed tan and didn't have to use any self-tanners or bronzer on the day in my white dress.
I had been on a health and fitness journey for years however from our engagement to the wedding I have never been so motivated and focused in this regard. It was lovely though as there was a sense of purity and not vanity during this time of pursuing a holistically healthy lifestyle. My endeavour became more about preparing my body and mind to be the best wife and mother I can be instead of looking good for society.
A week before the wedding my sister, mom and mother-in-law went to a spa for a full body massage and a facial. The week leading up to the wedding I was easy on my skin, no excessive exfoliation or treatments and also minimal make-up. A tip I did use was putting cucumber in a cup with some ice and placing that on my eyes in the mornings; this really helped make my face look fresh and well rested.
I spent a lot of time being still. Just pausing and taking it all in, and looking back I am so glad I had those moments of reflection and clarity that slowed everything down and made me present. Another little trick that was of paramount importance, not sleeping in or wearing a bar or a top with straps so my open shoulders on the wedding day had no marks from clothing.
Oxbow Country Estate have a wide selection of items that can be incorporated to match your look and feel on your day. So a lot was taken care of by the venue and the assigned wedding coordinator.
Keeping in with the theme of elegant and classy our colours where white, navy blue, burgundy, blush, rose gold and hints of greenery to lift the colours to more natural feel. We have flowers at various heights on the tables to give the feel of being outside even when seated at a table in the reception hall. All the flowers and table decor was done by Bella Fiore who captured what we wanted perfectly.
We also had candles at various heights on our tables, this completely changed the feel of walking into the reception. It was incredibly comfortable and romantic.
We have violet lights around the inside of the reception to add to the romance of the evening, there was also extensive lighting on the dance floor all done by the same company that did our sound, Up A Tone Events.
We didn't need to add much as the venue truly is magical as it is.
My husband got his and all of his groomsmen suits from Khaliques in Johannesburg. His tailor was incredible and not shy to tell the men the proper way to wear and pair a suit with its correct shirt, waistcoat, cuff-links and so forth. They were all looked so handsome!
The shoes and ties came from a boutique store called Your Pal in Brooklyn Mall.
I wanted my bridesmaids to show off the fact that they were woman. Having chosen burgundy dresses I couldn't do anything too much as it would've completely dominated photos and times we were all together. I went with simple tight dresses and added long bows around their waists. They all had waterfall plaits done by one of my flower girls to make the sophisticated look the dress gives a more casual, day-time wedding look. They all wore open toed shoes (luckily my ladies had pretty feet).
I got their dresses from Identity for an absolute steal!
One Mokgatle, a dear dear friend, our pastor and now our marriage officer.
Warren James Photography, his work really done speak for itself. Our pictures are all breath-taking and we are still getting complimented on them 7 months post wedding. He is friendly and comfortable, knows how to set the scene to capture beautiful moments rather than photos.
Yes, TJ Swart ,whom works at Oxbow Country Estate and was assigned to us as our personal coordinator on the day and planner leading up to our day.
Not applicable as we all stayed at the estate.
Our wedding cake was made by Love Baking in Pretoria.
Get a tasting box and yours will be too ;)
All food was prepared by Oxbow Country Estate's personal chef. They do offer tasting evenings where samples of some of the meals are served, this sealed the deal for us as it is gourmet food and plated with such intention and passion it was a gift to our guests.
Chrystalace - a lady by the name of Jolindi, incredible at what she does.
We had both live music and a DJ.
DECA, a band of two gentlemen one on the guitar and the other on a violin, nothing made it seem like a wedding quite as much as having this live music. They did our ceremony and entertained the guests while we were taking our photos.
We had dancing lessons with Ryan Kichenbrand the co-owner of Revolution Dance Center in Centurion. He is an amazing dancer and truly captured the story we wanted to tell, we even had two 'Dirty Dancing' lifts.
The sound and lighting was all done by Up A Tone Events.