20 Stylish Short Wedding Dresses

Bali Sunset Dress by Lace and Liberty Bridal

Earlier this year, we took a moment to focus on short wedding dresses. Because: total chic. Since then, it’s been so cool to see the amount of hits and pins that post has generated, and know that maybe short gowns are having their day in the sun. I mean, full length gowns will always be awesome, but just like a wedding dress doesn’t have to be white, you can pick a length that suits you too. So! Where to start? Well, you know we love finding new designers on Etsy, and this is the category where these designers really shine. There’s a wealth of pretty, flirty, fabulous gowns on the site, and we’ve picked 20 of our absolute faves! As always, click through on the links or images to see more of each dress.Read More

Intimate Red & Grey Wedding by Maré Rootman {Dominique & Gerrie} PLUS Top 10 Tips for Planning an Intimate Wedding

When weddings are what you do for a living, it can feel a little like you’ve seen it all, and a traditional Big Day is sometimes the last thing you want to plan for yourself. So it’s no surprise to find that what happens when two Johannesburg wedding photographers decide to get hitched is a fun-filled, intimate weekend wedding in Cape Town! Dominique (and her company Hello Love Photography) is already a member of the SBB Directory, so when I asked for intimate weddings for April, I thought it was awesome that she submitted her own! Not just because it’s fun and relaxed with lots of grey and red handmade details, beautifully captured by Maré Rootman, but because I could pick Dominique’s real bride brain, and ask her to give you her words of wisdom on planning an intimate celebration. So be sure to read ahead to the end of he feature, where you’ll find her Top 10 Tips! (Be sure also to check out the Hello Love profile in our directory to hear more from Dominique.)Read More

How to Cut Your Guest List


If you read our popular post in January on How to Write Your Guest List, you may be A-for-away on the whole guest list front. But for those of you planning a small wedding (and here’s why you might want to), maybe you need an extra bit of help. After all, while we love the intimacy and lower budget of a bijoux bash, nobody loves having to cut friends and family out of a very special day. So today we’re bringing you our seven top tips for making the snip, as well as some extra tips for how to break the awkward news.Read More

Romantic Rooftop Elopement Inspiration by Black Frame Photography & Runaway Romance

Holy cannoli, do I have something special to share with you guys today! As you know, it is our month of small weddings, and this fine morning we have a super creative elopement inspiration from a brilliant team. It combines a few of our favourite things – a wedding for two, urban chic, and a city skyline. But what tickled me was the little details – a naked red velvet cake, a table runner made of 5 cent pieces (seriously, I LOVE THIS), and a sparkly birdcage veil (which huzzah, we’ll be sharing a DIY tutorial for later on today). It’s so fun and unique and South African – basically everything we like to celebrate here on the blog. Thank you so much to the awesome Rebecca of Runaway Romance and her team for sharing!Read More

Short Wedding Dresses

With this being our month of everything small wedding, I couldn’t help but jump at the opportunity to showcase short wedding dresses. I know they’re not everyone’s cup of tea, but if you think about it, some of our greatest fashion heroes over the years have opted for chic and short for their weddings over long and lovely. Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, Kiera Knightly, Natalie Portman, Carrie Bradshaw… With that kind of inspiration, it’s actually surprising that more brides don’t opt for the cropped cut. Of course, there’s also a ton of variety under the short dress banner – from mini to tea-length to hi-lo, and so on. All of them have a sassy elegance that’s beautiful at any wedding, but has become especially synonymous with stylish elopements and small weddings (or even as reception dresses for the bride for whom one pretty dress just won’t do). So it’s high time I rounded up my favourites, no? Maybe I can even convert some of you fashion-conscious brideys to the short dress brigade ;) **Update: Be sure to also check out our roundup of stylish short wedding dresses from Etsy**Read More

20 Fab Elopement Wedding Announcements

A few years ago, when my friend Sarah and her lovely fiancee stopped in London after a round-the-world trip, a group of us girls threw her a fairly impromptu hen night. All night, we drank trays of flavoured vodka and toasted their lives together, and sent them off back to Joburg expecting them to set a wedding date. Instead, as soon as they’d had a chance to tell their parents in person, we got an announcement – the sneaky minxes had in fact eloped while on their trip. And you know what, we loved it! There were all these gorgeous pics of the two of them, so in love and sharing this special secret moment on the other side of the world. I still think they looked like one of the most relaxed couples I’ve ever seen on their wedding day. So ever since then, I think elopements are pretty awesome. Sure, they’re not for everyone (and there can be hurt feelings from family members and friends who want to be included), but there really is something special about a wedding with a guest list of ‘just us two’. BUT here’s the thing – if you’re going this route, you’ll want a classier way to let your nearest and dearest know than just changing your status on Facebook. Something to let them in on the excitement, to let them know they were in your heart if not at the ceremony. Maybe even something to invite them to a party that you throw back at home. And that’s where the elopement wedding announcement comes in. The good news? There are tons of sweet, fun and pretty options for you to say ‘we did’. Here are 20 of my favourites… Just click on any of the links or images and you’ll be taken straight to the Etsy shop.Read More

Individual Wedding Cakes

Something about me: I LOVE things in miniature. Dolls houses, tiny envelopes and parcels, miniature food as canapes… you name it. So it’s not really a surprise that little mini wedding cakes get an excited ‘eeee!’ out of me every time I spot them on Pinterest. Because come on, they’re just SO. DARN. CUTE. And they’re very much a growing trend for 2015, for all kinds of weddings – just imagine the kick your guests will get out of them! But of course, the extra detail and work that goes into these beauties does often mean a hike in cost, and for big weddings it may not be a practical choice. So this is one of those occasions where having a small wedding allows you to really focus on the special little details – and even better, it means you won’t have a whole mess of leftover cake when you’re only feeding a handful of people. One cake per guest, served as dessert or – for slightly larger weddings – a small scale cake per table. Practical and lovely. Now that’s what we like. Here are 20 of my faves – I dare you not to ‘ooh’ at least once!Read More

Why Have a Smaller Wedding?

You’ve probably gathered by now that our ‘theme’ for April is intimate weddings, and I have to say, I am super excited to be focusing on this wedding style in many of our posts over the next few weeks. Everything from elopements to destination weddings to surprise weddings to smaller soirees of 75 guests or less – there’s a lot of wiggle room under that ‘intimate wedding’ banner, so it really suits all kinds of couples and budgets. But before we get into the nitty gritty, I thought I’d answer the question: what exactly makes small weddings rock? Because they definitely do. So here are my Top 10 reasons why you should consider a bijoux bash for your own Big (little) Day.Read More

Intimate Open Air Wedding at Groot Constantia by Marli Koen {Sarah & Kyle}

You know, some of my favourite stories about weddings are about the way that a community (even in our modern age) responds to a bride and groom – for example, the way all the neighbours came out to wave my friend Lee off to her ceremony, for example, or the spontaneous applause that can greet a couple during a city photo shoot. It reminds me of the way that in a European village wedding, the bride and groom might walk from church to reception with their guests following behind and strangers cheering them on – a happy and triumphant parade. Today’s wedding reminds me of that spirit a lot – you can almost feel the sense of community at Sarah and Kyle’s wedding in these lovely pictures by Marli Koen, as well as the couple’s togetherness as they see each other for the first look and couple shoot, greet their guests, collect their waiting retinue, and walk down the aisle together. Their friends and family surround them, leaning in to hear their words of love, and afterwards, under the leafy shade on South Africa’s oldest wine estate, there’s the fluttering of fans, the drinking of wine, and the joy of a love story long in the making come to fruition. I also have to mention how much I love the lasercut pincushion proteas in coloured bottles on each table – such a sweet and fun South African detail!Read More

Intimate Boho Bright Garden Wedding by Riekert Cloete {Lise & Gary}

Back in the day when my mom and dad got married, there was none of this whole weekend, hundreds of people at your wedding thing going on. They had a morning wedding and a brunch in my grandparents’ garden. Me, I was a little girl when Princess Diana got married, and from then on, big weddings were the THING. So when I heard about my folks’ wedding, at first I just thought shame*. But I’ve got to tell you, as I’ve done this wedding blogging thing over the years, I’ve found a certain appeal in those intimate backyard/garden weddings. Something incredibly charming about celebrating this huge, momentous thing and then sitting down around a table small enough to talk to everyone there. How wonderful must that feel? Today’s couple opted for just this kind of wedding – in fact, it might be the most intimate wedding I’ve ever featured at just fourteen people including the bride and groom. But it is full of heart, and colour, and family and love. Not to mention all things bright and boho, and the most incredible vintagey dress. I adore every one of Riekert Cloete’s gorgeous photos, which really bring Lise and Gary’s big day to life. Oh, and their how-they-met story? Total Hollywood!Read More