We’re heading for the bushveld this Monday morning, my favourite place to be (and holy cannoli, I really need to go again soon because it has been WAY too long). This gorgeous shoot comes from our friends, the talented duo of Jack & Jane Photography, who headed for Lion Sands reserve in order to capture a creative take on a real life bushveld fairytale. With soft fabrics, dramatic florals and makeup, and that great big African sky, it’s my kinda romance.
It’s Fashion Friday, and this week I’m super excited to be able to share this bridal inspiration, featuring the new collection from one of my favourite up-and-coming SA designers, Elli-Nicole! If you’re not yet familiar with this homegrown haute brand (which extends to both gowns and shoes) – well, you’re in for a treat! Because not only are Elli-Nicole’s shoes BEYOND, but the Elli-Nicole dresses are utterly, breathtakingly fit for a queen too. So basically, bridal heaven. In this lovely lookbook, photographer Jessica Notelo has captured all those incredible textural details – 3D petal bodices, a scattering of pearls like tiny seeds, a lattice of lace. She calls it Jardin de Dentelle, which means ‘Garden of Lace’ in French – and well, that pretty much says it all! So let’s take a stroll down this particularly lovely garden path, shall we?
We like to mix things up here on SBB so while the last couple of weddings have been all about jewel tones and wintery style, this afternoon we’re off to the beach! This bridal inspiration shoot is all about sunrise light, soft sands, elegant textures and pastel blooms and boy oh boy is it ever pretty! From the Elizabeth Stockenstrom lace sleeve gown to her golden laurel crown, this bride looks like a goddess, with her bouquet adding a touch of wild beauty that reflects that around her. Gorgeous pics by Astrid Bradley!
They say (whoever they are, but *I* definitely say) that the best weddings are those that reflect the personalities of the bride and groom. Well, Coenie and Anuscka’s is definitely one of those. Anuscka describes them as “fun, quirky, but romantic” and that is pretty much the perfect expression for their wedding day too, which takes ideas we love and gives them their own sweet little twists. First off, forest ceremony (love!) under an archway decked in proteas and lines of lace bunting. Then the reception, which brought the forest indoors with loads of greenery, more proteas, wood textures and loads of magical, whimsical touches like little bunnies on the tables, fairy lights throughout, and even an adorable donut display. It’s so fun and pretty, and talk about pretty – the bride is a knockout, rocking a low back, lace sleeve gown and a berry lip. Oh, I could go on and on, but let me rather hand over to the darling Coba Photography for her pictures, and the bride for her story.
Jordan Lined Tulle Bridal Skirt by Rebecca Schoneveld
Since this is the month of fairytale inspiration on SBB, I couldn’t let it go by without talking ballgowns! Because when you think of a princess bride, the classic ballgown silhouette is immediately what comes to mind. And yes, some of you might think this is a bit tooooo much dress for you (although hell, if not on your wedding day, when?) but many brides who were initially considering something simpler have ended up with a ‘meringue’ because they were seduced by the magic gorgeous-making powers of this silhouette. With their fitted bodice, flared waistline and full skirt, they’re incredibly flattering to most body types. Ready to be a princess bride yourself? We’ve rounded up 20 of the loveliest Etsy gowns to inspire you! Links in bold denote affiliate links. The cost to you remains the same, but SBB may receive a commission for any sales made.
Some winter days I long for the summer again, but on day’s like today, I can only revel in everything that the chillier season has to offer. That’s because today’s wedding, between long-time sweethearts Gerhard and Suzanne, is everything a winter wedding should be and then some. A cozy atmosphere, candles on the tables, the smell of logs crackling in the fireplace. And Suzanne herself looks like a winter princess, dresses in gorgeous full-length lace and carrying a gorgeous jewel tones bouquet (peonies, swoon!). Rounding out that rich colour palette is the groom in his dashing suit and the bridesmaids in their forest green dresses from SBB fave Jacoba. And did I mention the tables? Sumptuous rustic creations covered with flowers and antique brass and gold vases and candleholders, which all looked so perfect in the intimate atmosphere of Kurland in Plett. And best of all, it has the warmest of hearts, as is immediately evident from Adel Ferreira‘s marvellous pics. So yay for winter! (At least for today ;) )
You all know how much I love it when wedding pros find a current trend and add their own twist? Well, boho brides get ready, because today’s inspiration shoot adds a super cool spin to the bohemian trend that’s so popular right now. Taking its cue from old world elegance, including dark colours and heavy fabrics, this shoot from Natalie Loots Photography, Evoque Events and their team is all about ‘more is more’ – more patterns, more textures, more detail. “We had the idea to show that the bohemian trend can be taken up a notch by adding crystals, candles and a sense of opulence,” Natalie says. The team used black with hints of silver, and indigenous flowers (proteas, yayness!) as splashes of colour to complement the gorgeous, statement gowns. And while not all brides will be bold enough to rock a pantsuit or floor length, rose-embellished dress (although what a showstopper you will be if you do!), this shoot should act as an inspiration for every bride to ‘take things up a notch’ as Natalie puts it, and not be afraid to add that little something extra. Who knows? The results may surprise you!
It always gives me a thrill to see South Africans who’ve made their way in the world abroad come home to celebrate their weddings in our beautiful country – I guess there’s nothing quite like home soil! SA-born bride Gretchen, and her Canadian beau, Gabe, not only chose the gorgeous winelands for their celebration, but opted to have an intimate outdoor celebration showing it off to their dear friends, many of whom travelled from Canada to be with them. Imagine an elegant open air ceremony, followed by dining and dancing under the stars, in the shadow of a Cape Dutch homestead and under a festoon of fairy lights, and you’ll be starting to picture the sheer romance of this wedding, which was designed to perfection by SBB faves, Wedding Concepts! And I can’t not mention Gretchen’s insanely swoony Inbal Dror gown, with its figure-hugging silhouette and intricate beading, or the groom’s super personal boutonniere (fishing lures he created especially for his best men). All of it is captured with love here by the fab Kikitography (who even managed to keep their cool behind the camera in 40 degree heat!)
One of my favourite things is finding fresh sources of inspiration, so when I themed this month on fairytales, I wanted to make sure it wasn’t just the usual suspects (much as I love the Cinderellas and Belles of the wedding world!) Serendipitously, I came across this gorgeous, whimsical shoot by Celeste Cilliers and her team, based on one of my favourite Hans Christian Anderson stories, Thumbelina. Like any bride, Thumbelina celebrated finding her flower prince (after a few near misses), and this light, bright, floral fantasy is a lovely modern interpretation of the tale. And they all lived happily ever after…
Happy Friday loves! It may be a public holiday in South Africa, but I couldn’t resist sharing just one more touch of gorgeous inspiration with you all before the weekend begins. This charming bridal shoot comes from Mauritius-based fine art photographer Josué Bonnefemme (remember that name, those of you heading over to Mauritius for your weddings!) and I’m besotted by its combination of vintage-style lace gown and mantilla veil, and romantic garden elements. It’s such a fresh take on a Parisian shoot, and it has me yearning to visit again. Sigh.