Happy Friday lovelies! I have to be honest, this week has kicked my butt, big style. So apologies if you missed your posts on Weds and Thurs, but the good news is, we have triple – triple! – the loveliness today! And the even better news is that this is a long weekend for us in the UK, starting with me having the afternoon off. I’m going to a schnazzy hair place to be primped, highlighted, blowdried and manicured. Best Friday ever! Anyway, time to kick off with an amazing wedding I have been saving for all of you. Sarah and Pete were married at The Cape Farmhouse in a laid back, intimate, daytime and very African country-style celebration. I love their earthy colour scheme, succulent table settings and eco-friendly approach. And I am completely in AWE of Sarah’s look. Wow can this girl accessorise! I absolutely adore not only her look, but that of her bridesmaids – don’t you? Sarah also happens to be a photographer, which is always a little intimidating, but Brenda Wardall of Hearts in a Shutter has done such an awesome job in capturing all the rustic gorgeousness of the big day.
Sarah made time to send over a great little writeup of her wedding:
Pete and I met about seven years ago – we started out as friends and after three years of “hanging out” together we fell in love. I am a photographer, and he is a plumber – I think our mutual love of the outdoors and travel connected us initially – and our friendship forms a solid bond between us now. We were on a two week road trip, driving from Cape Town to the Drakensberg and back, when he proposed. We were camping at a place called Banana Beach on the South Coast when he popped the question. We were literally sitting in front of a fire, on the ground, when he pulled out a box with my engagement ring inside. No rose petals, champagne or decadence for us – we love things rustic, simple and close to nature.
We chose The Cape Farmhouse in Scarborough as our venue, as it is so rustic and down to earth – old farm buildings, oak trees, horses, paddocks – all surrounded by mountains and wide open spaces. We didn’t want to over-decorate the venue, as it was so beautiful already – so we worked with the surrounding colours and added to that with pot plants and small succulents on the tables, hessian (burlap) runners down the centres of the tables and macro flower photos as our table numbers. We also planted proteas in the flower beds at the venue – all sustainable living plants and no cut flowers. Trying to keep our carbon footprint low – and the plants/flowers alive. The guests took home the plants as gifts, something they could nurture – a reminder of our special day. So the colours were earthy tones: brown, green, and burnt orange/red. This came through in the bridal party colours which were white, gold, red and brown. So in a nutshell I would say our theme was “nature”.
I loved the fact that we had a day wedding instead of an evening wedding – it changed the vibe, made it more casual and lighthearted. I was also running around in the sun all day which is what I love. We had a live band which was incredible, playing old school music in the afternoon – and the dance floor rocked! Even though it was 4 pm and bright sunlight. A marimba band also played during and after the ceremony, which created a lovely festive vibe. Live music definitely adds a special dimension to a wedding. I also did something different for my bouquet: four of my friends brought a flower each to the wedding and before I walked in they gave this to me, and we wrapped the flowers in string. A meaningful ritual with four of my special friends – it gave me strength and confidence to walk down the aisle and something so much more personal than a florist type bouquet.
Pete is a plumber, but his first love is plants so they had an important role to play in our day. And I love photographing flowers – so I included that on the tables. This was a reflection of our love and respect for mother nature – protecting and nurturing plants instead of hundreds of cut flowers that just die after the day. We bought all the plants ourselves, wrapped them in fabric and hessian string and looked after them for the weeks leading up to the wedding – they added so much life to our day!
My advice for brides would be to keep things very simple – and true to yourself. Don’t get caught in the massive wave – that tells you that everything needs to be expensive and the best quality. Find a venue that doesn’t need lots of decor – surroundings that are beautiful. So you are not competing with nature, but adding simple touches to the already beautiful surroundings. And relax for the week leading up to your wedding day – what a waste if you are tired, stressed and anxious on your day. I have photographed too many brides who look exhausted on the day. Look at wedding magazines and websites – to get some wonderful ideas but also delve into yourself and the creativity that lies within – your day needs to be a reflection of who you are, not what some glossy magazine says is the latest style. So find ideas, and then make them your own.
Congrats and thank you so much, Sarah and Pete – your refreshing approach to wedding planning is such an inspiration! And as always, a massive thank you to Brenda – check out more photos of the wedding on her blog.
Venue and Catering: The Cape Farmhouse
Photographer: Brenda Wardall of Hearts in a Shutter
Plants: Earth Worx Garden Centre
Cake: Michelle Koopman
Bride’s dress: Wedding Time
Jewellery: Ida Elsje
Bridesmaids’ dresses: Chica Loca
Hair & makeup: Sebastine Pepler
Band: Me and Mr Brown and Ama Ambush Marimba Band