Think back for a second, folks, and remember your high school crush. And ok, let’s skip over the fact that for most of us, that’s a what-was-I-thinking-dude moment, and remember all the intensity and hope and adorableness of that feeling. Now imagine you grow up, and that crush turns up at a party, and he or she is better than you remember them, and not only that but they’re finally noticing you and are as smitten as you are. I mean, it’s a whole Taylor Swift song right there! That’s how Jan-Peet and Nadine, today’s sweet bride and groom, began and if their story is the cutest, wait till you see their wedding! Both have a lovely sense of fun that they brought into their big day, with origami details like cranes and cootie catchers on the tables, a wordsearch seating plan, cake pops and malva puddings for dessert, and even a magician to entertain their guests. At the centre of it all of course, was their grand romance, and Wynand van der Merwe captured the perfect mix of dreamy portraits and playful details to share with you today. Oh! But I can’t not mention the fashion! Nadine’s dress is a stunning high-neck lace beauty, and her bridesmaids rock separates (mismatched tops – love!) in grey and white – gorgeous!
I’ve heard of saying it with flowers, but when it came to his proposal, today’s groom said it with coffee! Which is kind of the perfect city living touch for Henrietta and Ross, who also picked a classic city location for their wedding (the historic Cape Town Club) and took it as their cue for a celebration that was infused with 1920s vintage style. The reception was class all the way – candlelight bouncing off wood-panelled walls from the elegant black tapers, gorgeous arrangements of white flowers from the amazing Neva at Bright & Beautiful (who actually DOES know how to say it with flowers!), and the sweetest menus with a dog motif from our friends at Blooming Wonderful. All captured perfectly by Duane Smith.
Winter weddings are finally having their day in South Africa you guys, and I could not be happier! Not that summer weddings aren’t fabulous, but winter has such a different and lovely vibe, and I adore weddings that take this and turn it into a beautiful celebration. Anja and Christiaan’s wedding is one of them. A ceremony in amongst the trees, tables decked in jewel tones, hanging boxes overflowing with florals, evergreen wreaths, not to mention the bride’s winter-perfect wedding dress – all tucked inside a July wedding that’s enough to make you not even mind a bit of a chill in the air. ust and Dreams’ stunning images combine with the palette of warm burgundy, cream, blush and maroon to prove that cold weather weddings might just be the fairest of them all.
A touch of citrus, a touch of vintage glamour. It’s the perfect pairing for Karlien and Daneel’s elegant farm affair – after all, it took place in a clear marquee in the grounds of the bride’s family home, right in the middle of Eastern Cape citrus country. And citrus was very much part of the design concept (just as it was part of the couple’s story – after all, they got engaged in an orchard!). From the bright pops of grapefruit pink and clementine orange in the abundant floral decorations (oh, those florals!), to the wedges of lemon peeking from glass vases, to the strings of dried citrus slices that formed a unique backdrop to the main table, all complemented with mixed metallics (including the bridesmaids’ gorgeous separates), there were plenty of wow moments that made this a modern take on a country affair. It all unfolds below, through the lens of Charlie Ray Photography!
There are so many gorgeous details I could talk about when it comes to this floral-filled wedding by the fabulous Aleit Group at Boschendal, and let’s be honest, we could spend the whole day gawping over the beautiful images by Shanna Jones. But there’s one element that completely, utterly took my breath away: the bride’s bespoke Kobus Dippenaar gown. Holy hauteness. With hand-placed lace floral applique reflecting the floor to ceiling flowers at the reception, a froth of tulle at the bottom, and tiny pearls for good luck, it is everything. And as for the rest, from the coolest custom cocktails, to the decor, to a late night Mickey D’s surprise, I can’t do any better in describing Marilize & Helgard’s wedding than the bride herself, so be sure to read her words, below.
Sometimes the simplest things in life are the best. A breeze at the end of a hot day. A single flower. The smell of rain. Rob & Amy’s wedding reminds me of this principle – it’s simple and unfussy, but every detail is a delight, from tables decked in amber glassware and foliage to the stylishly minimalist stationery, to the silvery lace trailing over the bride’s shoulders and around her waistline. It’s warm, natural, inviting – delivering the quintessential Cape country wedding experience, but with added freshness and fun. Through a sweltering Tulbagh day, to sun setting behind the mountains (that Olive Rock view NEVER gets old!), to a long night spent feasting and celebrating, each special moment was captured by Yeah Yeah Photography and I’m super excited to share them with you now.
When the planning talents of Kraak are woven together with the irresistable gorgeousness of Vivid Blue’s photography, you can be sure that a stunner of a soiree is about to be served up to you on a platter! This chilled out gem of a wedding takes place at one of our all-time favourite venues, The Dairy Shed, and harnesses its rustic beauty for an al fresco celebration that showed the large contingent of overseas guests that we South Africans know how to throw a party. Think gourmet braai, gumboot dancers, and a jazzy African band to keep everyone on the dancefloor all night long. Zoe and Clinton are such a fun couple, and I love how this wedding combines all kinds of pretty (including a breathtaking Janita Toerien dress, sparkly pink bridesmaid gowns, and some showstopping florals) with their super fun, super laid-back vibe, to make a whole that it utterly, uniquely theirs.
I love a wedding that speaks to a couple’s personalities, and Pieter and Nanette made sure to do just that when they planned their wedding. The duo, who the bride says “love an adventure” chose to have their big day at a destination that’s an adventure in itself, the incredible Bordeaux Game Farm in Limpopo. Due to the gorgeous bush setting they kept the details relatively simple and natural, like wreaths of greenery on the walls and beautiful foliage runners on the tables. But throughout, there was this touch of drama and sophistication (“to represent my personality a little,” says Nanette!), like bridesmaids in cheeky crop top and flare skirt ensembles, and pops of colour on the tables. But the most dramatic detail of them all was the scenery, like the huge tree under which the couple said their vows, or those vast African skies just before sunset, captured so beautifully by photographers Page & Holmes.
Anyone who knows me will tell you I’m obsessed with bushveld weddings, and nothing has made my heart happier over the last couple of years is to see a new, luxury, fine art approach to safari weddings starting to emerge and become part of the portfolio of gorgeous South African wedding experiences. I mean, when you have a background like our wild landscape, the last thing you want to do is compete with it, but you do want to provide an experience for your guests that’s almost sensual, in that it’s about engaging every single sense. Rich, warm textures like leather and wood mixed with soft ones like silk, tulle and lace – a feast for sight and touch. Delicious cuisine served on and in five star linens, crockery and crystal. Palettes of muted pastels and soft neutrals that let those textures and natural beauty shine through. And when it comes to pulling off this look, I can’t think of a better team in KZN than the one I’m showcasing here today. These folks are some of my fave wedding pros of all time, including Joe of Oh Happy Day and Eileen of Bright Girl – they’re consistently creating some of the most beautiful wedding inspiration around and also happen to be the loveliest people to hang with on your big day. You can see why, when I knew this shoot was going down at Cheetah Ridge, I was glued to Instagram for updates, and when I saw the images they were even better than I imagined. So naturally, I picked a zillion of them to share with you. You’re welcome.
LONG HAUL. What a terrible term – it immediately sounds like a schlep: waiting around in airports for connecting flights, jetlag, airplane food… ugh. But when I think of long flights, I get excited, because at the other end of that journey? It’s destination: awesome. Think about it – no matter where in the world you live, if it takes you a while to get somewhere, it’s going to be amazing. And that’s why, when I had the chance to head to the Caribbean to spend some time with my Aisle Society sisters at Sandals South Coast last year, I jumped at the opportunity. Thanks to SAA, the flight was a breeze (more on that later), and I arrived in Jamaica full of energy and excitement. And what I found was that a few extra hours of travel were 1000% worth it. When you see not only the gorgeousness that is Jamaica (a place so lovely that everyone welcomes you home from the minute you step off the plane, even if it’s your first time there) but the incredible destination weddings that Sandals has created as part of their new Aisle to Isle experience, you’ll understand exactly what I mean! Whether you’re gathering a crew of family and friends, eloping just the two of you, or making it your dream honeymoon locale, you won’t be disappointed. Let’s check out the highlights of my trip, and keep scrolling for my top tips and necessities for long-haul flights!