I've never been (but have no fear, it's been on my Must Travel list for ages) but I'm here to say South Africa must absolutely be FUN. Every wedding I see from the Rainbow Nation has the most perfect touch of whimsy to balance the crazy in love romance, and this one is no exception. We've fallen for the rainbow of bridesmaids, the fab florals, and the fantastic relaxed ballroom setting, all captured brilliantly by dna photographers. Fallen for all that, and more, HARD.
Chris and I met four years go in a bowling club. I couldn't believe that he liked me - he was sexy and cool and played in a band. We immediately fell for each other and moved in together after just three months and have been together ever since (but I wouldn't recommend moving in that soon-its hard work!) So when we decided to get married it felt like it was always meant to be.
He proposed on a beach in our favourite fishing village called Arniston on Guy Fawkes. We didn't want a long engagement and got married five months later. My mom helped me plan the whole thing, and being an advertising producer, she was the best wedding planner ever.
We wanted everything to be very relaxed and easy and just 'us'. It couldn't have gone more smoothly. The second we saw Casa Labia, we just knew it was the place. It is a beautiful Italian inspired villa by the sea, and the family who owns it has a strong, personal heritage in South Africa and Cape Town. It was so lovely with the Baroque downstairs and the art gallery upstairs. The entire event was planned to be on the lawn overlooking the sea, but it poured buckets on the day and the wonderful events manager, Emma moved everything inside and it worked beautifully. My friend told me that everyone was coming to be happy for us on the day and we would let everyone down if we were miserable about the weather. Great advice!
I found my dress at a designer shop called Hip Hop and picked it right off the rails at one visit (at a great price!). I had to keep it locked away at my friends house so that I wouldn't try it on every day! Wedding dresses definitely don't have to be expensive, they just have to be loved.Chris found an amazing jacket at Ben Sherman and pulled on his favourite jeans. I surprised him with a pair of blue suede shoes as a gift.
We wanted it to be colourful and retro, and I wanted the bridesmaids to look like a bunch of colourful balloons and they really did. I am lucky to have beautiful friends. We had a choir at the ceremony and a jazz band at the reception and there was a rainbow to serenade us. There were beautiful, endless courses of bowl food (including fish and chips!) which everyone loved. It was the best day of our lives!
My advice to other brides is to really let it be a day where you express your own style as a couple and only choose things that you love. Get an inspiration board that you love early on and always keep checking back when you see new things or decide on things. Let your family and friends help, its great to have them part of the process. And whatever happens, if it rains or shines, have the funnest day of your life.
Photographers: dna photographers / Hair: Lara from Wyatt Hair / Make-up: The Image & Hair / Flowers: DIY Bride and Mother / Balloons: Party Corner / Choir: UCT Choir / Jazz Band: Dixie Swingers / Venue: Casa Labia / Chapel: The Range Stone Chapel / Invites: Pink Pigeon / Bridesmaids dresses: I Love Leroy / Dress: Hip Hop / Grooms jacket: Ben Sherman / Grooms shoes, ties, shirts, shoes: Woolworths / Bride shoes: Queue Shoes / Veil: Helenas Crown / Ring: Shelley and Harry / Food: The Gourmet Chef