I woke up to the sound of rain and the only times it stopped was when I walked in and we walked out of the chapel. Those moments were the most special to me. My mom cut holes in a black bag for me to wear as a "bowl" for my dress, while I slid in the mud (luckily she brought boots for me to wear as well so my wedding shoes wouldn't be ruined). I took it off right outside the chapel, and walked in with a perfectly clean dress and shoes... My hair, on the other hand, ended up in strings of frizz! It was an incredibly emotional day, and I couldn't wait to officially start forever with my only. We wrote personal vows, which we shared after the actual ceremony - partly because I wouldn't have been able to say much between tears and sons, and partly because we wanted to keep that very personal part of the day intimate with just us 2. Ag, and we forgot "our story" book at home, in which wedding guests would have signed. It took nights of work as we told the story of our love, from when we met to the venue viewing for our big day... It was sad that we didn't get to share it with those closest to us on our wedding day. I could effortlessly keep writing about the special and funny moments, but before space runs out, I'll stop. Hopefully I get to share some more at a later point.
I wasn't supposed to find out but I did, by accident. Daniel, my fiancé at the time, asked me to help him with an excel formula and as I sat next to him, he searched for the file name "book 1" (how original). Popping up in the search, "Zanzibar booking." At least I knew what to pack.
I honestly had no theme in mind when I started putting the look together. All I knew was I wanted lace, and it needed to be elegant. This is how it ended up, and I must add that my service providers were the best I could have had!
Hair: I had quite long hair and I wanted to showcase my naturally black locks. I bought a gorgeous rose gold flowered hair piece from Lovisa and asked Christelle form the Hair Castle what she could do with it, keeping most of my hair out my face. We threw ideas around and it ended up stunning, embracing my natural curl in a way more put-together look than I'd have ever been able to pull off. To add, my bridesmaids' hair looked stunning and held the entire night too.
Make up: warm and romantic, I told up and coming artist, Tiffini, from Forever Glow. I've known her for a while and I selected her because I knew her work was beautiful and our tastes were well aligned. She suggested a natural look that accentuated my "every make up artist's dream" eyes. She turned me, my mom and my bridesmaids into fairytale princesses!
The accessories: following the same theme as my hairpiece, my rose gold chandelier earrings with little diamanté detail complemented my hair and dress, and my bracelet, with similar detail, rounded my dress off well. I stayed away from a necklace. I preferred less jewellery that would keep the focus on the most important intended details of my outfit.
Garter: I started the process of making it myself, because I had something very specific and simple in mind. My sewing skills were never great so I handed it over to my mom, who had wanted to make it to start with. Because of this, my garter was a very special part of my outfit. Besides it being exactly what I hoped for, the process, once again, showed me how my mom is always there for me.
Dress 1: it was a winter's day, but I knew I'd dance myself warm. It only made sense to have 2 wedding dresses. Dress #1 had long sleeves and kept me warm during the ceremony and photoshoot. Because of its long sheer and lace sleeves, it had a low sweetheart neckline with a low rounded back to showcase my décolletage and long hair. This part of the design was especially difficult, my dressmaker, Karin, had told me. A few months prior, I tried on an A-line skirt that I can only describe as flowy and soft - I loved it! And Karin replicated it perfectly. It was slightly longer at the back, to enhance the elegance I wanted even when my long Cathedral style veil came off.
Dress 2: this one came on after all the speeches at the reception. It was a comfortable dress that followed the style of the first one to a large extent. My neckline was slightly higher, made intentionally this way to allow for comfortable dancing. It didn't have sleeves, but thin straps kept the bodice in place. It had a large bow that added detail to the back around my waist and a slit that created a party look in the front.
Lingerie: I can't even comment on this, because my under garments were all ugly granny beige! The last thing I wanted was anything glaring through my delegate dress(es).
Shoes: I wore my light pink, almost nude, silk shoes throughout the night. This gorgeous pair from Aldo was a mission to find, and provided beauty and real comfort. Because of the weather, they unfortunately ended up being a bit more nude than pink by then end of our magical night.
I pretty much tried to drink a bit more water than usual. I didn't want to look too different from every other day. Just had my nails done by Laura Lee in pretty French ombre.
I was quite adamant that I didn't want there to be too many flowers, something to which hubby agreed. I have always loved proteas so these were the main flowers. The decor itself remained quite natural with geometric shapes giving it a modern touch. Priscilla and her team at Droom Dekor made 100% sure that we'd have a combination of natural rustic and modern elements.
Daniel blew me away completely when I saw him for the first time on our wedding day. I had no idea what he would look like, as the only input I had was helping choose the fabric of his suit. It was navy and custom made by Ermenegildo Zegna. His groomsmen hired similar looking suits. They wore crisp white shirts and cufflinks that I had bought for him earlier when he officially qualified as a CA. The groom, groomsmen and our dad's ties were bought from Khaliques which made it all come together well.
I always knew I had beautiful friends but they really looked amazing on mine and Daniel's wedding day. Their hair and make up were done by the same vendors as mine. I bought their earrings when I asked them to be my bridesmaids - in styles that would suit them individually, but still complement the look I had in mind. When I say "look, " I mean colour. The only condition was that they had to wear burgundy dresses. The rest was up to them. We ended up going with Hoiden as the vendor, and they all chose the same design!
Dominee Johan Labuschagne from NG East London married us. He is so special to us and we could never have dreamed of a better service.
I cannot say enough good things about this husband and wife duo: Kiekielief did our photos and video spectacularly.
Yes! We'd have loved to take of it all by ourselves but living in Johannesburg and getting married in Port Elizabeth would not have made it an easy task. Priscilla from Droom Dekor put it all together perfectly for us.
It was all done by family of Daniel and myself. No one saw our transport anyway, so we chose to spend money on other more important aspects of the day instead.
Daniel and I are both foodies, so it was important to get this right. Maya and her team prepared a lovely winter dinner, with delicious soup and breads to start it all off. Our main course was hearty, with a variety of meats and warm vegetable dishes... And an amazing potato side! Our dessert would be the wedding cake feature table, made a combination of bakers, both domestic and commercial. Vanilla Pod and Brenda Once again proved that their baking was to die for!
My cousin, and maid of honour, is a graphic designer by profession. She designed and printed our invitation stationery as a wedding gift. She worked closely with Droom Dekor, who took care of the rest of the stationery, to ensure uniformity.
Our MC was one of Daniel's groomsmen, and oldest friends, who prides himself on his "dad" jokes. He introduced the evening as lively and casual - perfect! Our reception was the normal evening style, with our first dance just after dinner catered by Maya, who completely outdid herself! We danced to Over and Over by Nathan Sykes and Arianna Grande, after which I danced with my dad to Daddy by Abby Anderson. No lessons had. Our DJ, Herman from Music that Moves you, started the party straight after.