You’re engaged! CONGRATULATIONS! This is such a crazy, exciting time in your life, and an experience that you’ll never forget. But once the ring selfies have been taken and the parents (and the friends, and the distant cousins once removed) have been called, once the Facebook statuses have been changed and the champagne bottles emptied, there’s an inevitable moment of panic. OMGwehavetoplanawedding! Ack! How on earth, you think, do we do this? And more importantly, where do you start? Well brideys (and groomeys), we have you covered. Do not pass go, do not collect $200 until you have read this checklist for the newly engaged – ten things to get you firmly on track with your wedding planning journey. And also… BREATHE…
I love Januaries. A new year, a new engagement season and best of all – new friends joining the SBB community. I’m so thrilled to welcome all the new brides and grooms to SouthBound Bride today, many of whom will have gotten engaged over Christmas and New Year. CONGRATULATIONS! You’re about to embark on the most exciting journey, and I’m so excited to go on it with you. I’m Gaby, editor of SBB, and I’m here to be your virtual bestie and honorary bridesmaid as you navigate the following months of wedding planning, offering inspiration, advice, and the occasional bad joke. Because while it can be stressful, this whole wedding thing should always be fun!
So… How do you make the most of your SouthBound experience?
First off, you’ll want to sign up to our newsletter. That way, you’ll never miss out on our gorgeous real weddings, styled shoots and trend roundups – and don’t worry, we only mail you once a week, so there’s no spamming of your inbox. Plus, there’s a special monthly edition packed full of useful stuff, so you don’t want to miss it. SIGN UP HERE
Next, you’ll want to follow us on social.
- Instagram is our favourite thing – we’re growing fast and we have some very exciting Insta-ideas for 2017!
- Our Pinterest boards are full of beautiful images both from the blog and from other sources, and an awesome tool for planning your wedding.
- Facebook is a great way to keep up to date with all our latest posts. (Top tip! If you like or comment on posts from time to time, you’ll be more likely to see our daily FB posts in your newsfeed!)
- Tweet tweet… Twitter is another great way to follow SBB. Everything we publish gets tweeted there as well.
- And don’t forget to check us out on Aisle Society – which is another AWESOME source of inspiration for you to follow the best blogs in the business (find out how to plan your wedding with Aisle Society here)
PLANNING! EEK! WHERE DO I START?
We get it. Planning a wedding can be overwhelming, but we’ve got you covered! Here’s a step by step guide with links to ALL our fab advice posts – be sure to bookmark this as you’ll want to come back!
- A SouthBound Guide to Engagement Ring-Speak
- How to Choose a Venue
- How to Choose a Venue: Downloadable Worksheet
- 10 Questions to Ask Before a Venue Visit
- How to Choose Your Bridesmaids
- How to Choose Your Wedding Style & Colours
- How to Create a Wedding Inspiration Board
- How to Write Your Guest List in 10 Simple Steps
- Planning an Engagement Party
- Planning Your Wedding with Pinterest
- 10 Reasons to Get Married in South Africa
- Budget Tips from SouthBound Brides
- Entrance Music
- DJ-recommended Wedding Songs
- How to Cut Your Guest List
- How to Pick the Perfect First Dance Song
- How to Plan for a Rainy Wedding Day
- Making the Most of Your Wedding Photos
- Ten Tips for Planning an Autumn Wedding
- Top Tips for DIY Brides
- Top Tips for Spring Engagement Shoots
- Top 10 Chic Eco-friendly Wedding Ideas
- Top 10 Tips for Planning an Intimate Wedding
- Unassigned Seating: Is it Right for You?
- Wedding Invitations & Stationery Timeline
- Why Have a Smaller Wedding?
- Why Have a Winelands Wedding?
Grooms & Groomsmen
Fashion & Beauty
- A SouthBound Guide to Veil-speak
- Bridal Beauty Timeline
- How to Choose a Wedding Hair & Makeup Artist
- How to Find a Maternity Wedding Dress
- How to Style Your Engagement Shoot
- How to Wear Statement Bridal Jewellery
- Rocking Your Hair & Makeup Trial
- Wedding Dresses for Your Body Type: Column
- Wedding Dresses for Your Body Type: Neat Hourglass
- Wedding Dresses for Your Body Type: Pear
- Wedding Dresses for Your Body Type: Strawberry
- A SouthBound Guide to Bouquet Types
- A SouthBound Guide to Flower Meanings
- Flowers in Season: Autumn
- Flowers in Season: Spring
- Flowers in Season: Winter
Cakes & Catering
- A SouthBound Guide to Wedding Cake Terminology
- How to: Cheese Wheel Wedding Cakes
- Vegetarian Wedding Menus
Showers, hens & bachelorettes
- Bridal Showers & Hen Nights: Who Pays?
- How to Plan the Perfect Bridal Shower (with Printable Timeline)
- The Hen Commandments
- Changing Your Surname?
- Charity Wedding Favours
- Five Ways to Cultivate Real Love Every Day
- The Newlywed Shoe Game
- Top Tips for Boudoir Photo Sessions
- Wedding Day Remembrances
BUT WHERE DO I FIND THESE AWESOME VENDORS?
Introducing our brides to the incredible South African wedding pros is our passion and privilege. You can find our favourites in the SBB Directory, and the SBB Venue Collection, and be sure to check out the supplier list at the end of all our real weddings and styled shoots for more talented folks.
Any questions? Drop us a mail. We look forward to helping you plan your big day!
One of the things you take for granted when you’ve been wedding blogging as long as I have, is that the terminology that’s part of your everyday life isn’t necessarily something that all brides know, off the bat, when they get engaged. After all, you ladies have a lifetime of other things to think about! That’s why I love putting these guides together – quick visual references that give you the tools for your planning, whether that’s in choosing a veil, or deciding on the shape of your bouquet, type of cake, etc. A lot of us know dress silhouettes a bit better, but even if you know your ballgown from your mini, do you know your mermaid from your trumpet? So today we’re focusing on the different dress styles, and illustrating each with some of the most gorgeous gowns I could find on Etsy. Win-win!
When it comes to classic and romantic wedding inspiration, there’s nothing more representative than the traditional (or even the traditional-with-a-twist) veil. Long or short, I love these beauties. So I thought it was the perfect time to update one of the most popular posts from deep in the archive, our guide to veils and veil-types. A veil dictionary, if you will. And of course, I just had to update it with lots of beautiful, pinnable images. The best part? You can actually buy any one of the veils featured here for your own wedding – just click on the links in bold. Of course, you may not want to rock a veil at all, but if you’re considering it, read on, because you’re about to discover a whole world of pretty options you didn’t even know existed! Links in bold denote sponsored affiliate links. SouthBound Bride may earn a commission if a sale is made.
So, earlier today I shared a gorgeous styled shoot celebrating the official launch of the new Aisle Society website, but I wanted to pop back in and give you a better idea of how the site actually works, and more importantly, how you can use it as a bride or groom to plan your dream wedding – not instead of but as well as the tools you already use. We built the site for you, and we want you to love it, and use it, and be inspired by it, and make it part of your planning journey. The day a bride tells me for the first time that Aisle Society is her first stop when she opens her laptop? I’ll be happy as a happy person on Happy Day in Happyville.
Hello lovely ones! I’m super SUPER excited today, because I finally get to start rolling out the brand new, all-singing, all dancing (okay, it doesn’t sing and dance, but it’s still pretty awesome) SBB Collection, our new directory specifically for venues. We’ve been working with the best of SA’s places and spaces over the last few months, and we’ll be adding them in small groups over the next couple of weeks so that you get a chance to ‘meet’ them all properly, before the full directory is in place. At which point you’ll also be able to download it as a pretty (and handy) magazine! Yay! (Be sure to check it out HERE.) And here’s one of the reasons I love our new directory so much – we’ve tried to make sure that the listings are not only pretty but extremely functional – we’ve included all the info you need to know before making an enquiry or heading out for a site visit. After all, we know what it’s like – you get engaged, you see some gorgeous places online, friends are throwing recommendations at you every day… ack! It’s overwhelming! And while there’s the exciting stuff (the style! the features! that adorable place for photos!), it’s the practical aspects you need to keep an eye on because the last thing you want to do is fall in love with a venue that’s too small for your guest list, for example, or isn’t available on that date you’ve already carved out as yours. Because let’s be honest, some things are just going to be a non-negotiable, but those things vary from couple to couple. So, to help you out, we’ve compiled the essential list of questions to ask when researching venues (take a peek at the bottom at how our new listings answer them!).
For a lot of people, when you think ‘South African wedding’, one of the images that immediately springs to mind is the beautiful Cape winelands… a bride and groom walking hand in hand among the vines, great food and wine… you get the picture. After all, our wine route is one of the most beautiful places on earth (not that I’m biased as a Stellenbosch alum or anything, but they so are). And yes, we’ve all been to winelands weddings before, but from time to time, when I hear couples say that they avoided estate venues just to be different, I feel a little bit sad. That’s like saying you went to Italy and avoided Tuscany, just to be different. Not because we don’t have a wealth of other fantastic options, but because there are so many more reasons to consider a wine farm wedding than not. And so, since this month we’re celebrating everything vineyard, I thought it was the perfect time to round up my top ten of ’em.Read More
Wine farm brides and grooms, rejoice! This October on SBB, our theme is Vineyard Weddings, so we’ll be looking back at some of our favourites from SA’s wealth of wine farm venues, as well as rounding up lots of little details and lovelies that you can include to bring your location to life (or just bring a bit of the vineyard into whichever venue you choose!). When I think about wine (which is a lot), I also think about cheese – the two go together like love and marriage. So an obvious option for a vineyard wedding cake is to go for a cheese wheel tower instead of (or as well as) a traditional sweet cake. It may no longer be a new idea, but it’s always a crowd-pleaser! Because cheese, duh. And sure, you could just plonk a bunch of cheese on a tray or pile a few rounds up and call it a cake, but it’s much more fun to create something pretty with just as much panache as a classic cake. Depending on how you style your cake, it can fit in perfectly with a rustic wedding, a contemporary one – even a romantic or glamorous one! And the best part is that you (or a friend or family member) can do it yourselves, following our handy tips. And, of course, we’ve rounded up lots more gorgeous cheese wedding cakes (many from our own SBB weddings) to inspire you!Read More
It’s that time of year again, when summer brides and grooms book a bit of extra time with their photographers for that all-important engagement shoot (hands down the best way to get yourselves used to being in front of the camera before your Big Day). And let’s be honest, there’s no better time to plan a couple shoot than the spring – think blossoms, greenery, fresh colours, and dreamy light! There are a few things you should take into account, though, so we’ve asked a couple of our favourite local photographers to share their top 10 tips – as well as some of their favourite spring engagement pics. You can also find more e-shoot inspiration in our archives.
Hello lovelies! It might not look like spring outside my window today, but TECHNICALLY we’re supposed to be all about this fresh new season, so I thought it was the perfect time to take a squizz at some seriously gorgeous spring bouquets. Seasonal flowers are a big thing with me – I really think that whatever time of year you choose to get married in, you’ll get the most beautiful, vibrant blooms when you go seasonal. And spring… well, when it comes to flowers, spring is king. We’ve already covered autumn and winter in this series, matching up some drop-dead amazing bouquets with invitations, and highlighting seasonal blooms, and today we get to play with some of my all-time favourite flowers. Hello, peonies! Let’s have a look, shall we… Read More