There’s something about a rustic wedding that gets me every time. Maybe it’s the mix of textures, the natural colours and floral elements, or just the simple unpretentious romance of the countryside. Today’s wedding has all of that in droves and thoughtful details galore, from stencilled burlap placemats and chalkboard wine holders on the tables (love the lace, button and print napkin rings too!), to hanging mason jars filled with candles and baby’s breath, right down to a sweet vintage cameo on the bride’s dress. And with a soft rain bringing blessings as well as a dreamy quality to Maurice & Magpie‘s gorgeous photos, the rustic fairytale is complete.
We were both doing a ski working season in the United States. There was a group of about fifteen South Africans and we all became great friends. Kelly and I were friends for a long while after coming back to South Africa. He lived in Durban and I was in Pretoria finishing off my studies. Every holiday I would go to visit my parents in Durban; Kelly and I shared many beach days, kiting days, coffees and canoe trips before we discovered we were more than friends.
The night happened totally unexpectedly, as I actually decided to cook a great meal and romantic candlelit dinner for my husband to be. He whisked me off mid cooking, played our wedding song and started dancing with me… then he started telling me all these beautiful things and next thing there was a beautiful ring, Kelly on one knee and me shocked with no words…!
The Wedding in Three Words
Fairytale, unimaginable, natural.
We got married at Bellwood Farm in the Midlands. The entrance is this beautiful long meadow driveway that’s surrounded by trees. The chapel for us was the dealbreaker – an old milk barn house that had stunning wooden rafters where I could just envision hanging bottles and flowers. So we just knew that this was our perfect venue! It had a lovely backdrop for photos, enough cottages for all our friends and family to stay (which most of them did) and was just an all-round beautiful farm.
We were in love with the rustic theme. Really relaxed, beautiful neutrals and naturals that blended in with our farm style venue.
We love great food and tasteful, unique decor. We both appreciate beautiful scenery and we wanted to make sure our decor suited just that. With the venue already being so naturally stunning, we focused and brought through the rustic decor that we envisioned. We got so many ideas from the internet, especially Pinterest. We loved incorporating our style into our wedding. We wanted to make sure that our food was just divine, and we are very grateful that our caterers understood exactly the type of food we wanted. The snack table (where guests could relax while photos were being taken) was also very important: we wanted a variety of cheeses and jams, nuts and dried fruits, juices and lemonades.
We did most if not all of our own decor. Many weekends we would cut,glue, sew, paint and all the rest…because we loved the whole idea of it being a wedding unique to us. We designed and made our save the dates, wedding invites, menus, wedding programs. My mom did a lot of sewing making our long strings of bunting. We cut and painted all our wine chalkboards, napkin holders, chopping boards, table placements, name tags, and all our place mats.
Our wedding flowers were ordered from a local florist and we only had baby’s breath (gypsophila). My bouquet was mainly baby’s breath with scatterings of fynbos flowers.
I actually went to try on a couple of dresses at local wedding dress boutiques in Durban. I needed to find out what style suited me best. I found a beautiful lace, mermaid style dress with a low back and lace straps. I looked online for the same dress and found it, so I imported it and it arrived within a month.
The most memorable to me is waiting so excitedly behind the chapel doors knowing that my husband would be standing there and watching me walk down the aisle.
We went to Thailand for eight days.
Advice for Future Brides & Grooms
If you have the time, try do as much DIY as you can. This brings out such unique features in your wedding that family and friends will recognise as you. Make sure you use this time of planning to enrich each other’s ideas. And remember ladies. You are the most beautiful person on your wedding day, do not forget that and don’t steer your eyes away from your husband-to-be when you are walking down that aisle, the way he will look at you will be a moment you treasure forever.
Venue: Bellwood Cottages | Catering: CHC Catering | Photography: Maurice & Magpie | Bride’s dress: Angels Gowns | Hair & makeup: Kelsey Rose Hair & Makeup | Bridesmaids’ dresses: Purchased at YDE, family friend modified them slightly | Groom’s attire: Woolworths | Hiring: Natural Nostalgia | DJ: Grant Boonzaier