Real Wedding at Grootbos {Quinta & Jacques}

It’s Friday, Friday…how happy are we it’s the weekend? And what will you be doing with yours? It’s been a bumper week on SouthBound Bride, and the fun won’t stop all day either, as I have some great content to share with you, starting with this awesome Grootbos wedding. I absolutely LOVE the unique decor – I haven’t seen bonsai centrepieces before, but they’re amazing! – the Zen colour scheme, the even more Zen ceremony, the beautiful bride’s bouquet and OMG VERA WANG DRESS. I die for Vera. And I’m also super excited to share the work of two of my new favourite photographers, Picture Me & U. They’re usually based in Gauteng, and I have some more loveliness from them to share with you soon – you’ll love their fun style!

Over to the stylish bride:
Jacques and I have known each other since school days. After a slightly awkward adolescent holiday romance, we didn’t see each other for seven years! (Jacques moved to Stellenbosch and life happened in between.) A series of coincidences brought us back together again and after a day (which turned into a night) at Rafiki’s in Cape Town; the explosive chemistry between us was like a chunk of sodium being thrown into a bowl of water.
After Jacques’ proposal Plans A, B & C (which included a ferris wheel, a fire and a sunset) failed, we sat at home, he lit candles, put some music on and pulled a huge tourmaline stone out of his pocket whilst I sat unsuspecting on the couch with the dogs. (You can’t buy a jeweller a ring.) He asked me to marry him. I cried. We kissed. I said yes. It was simple and perfect.

After visiting several wedding venues, only one stood out. Grootbos Nature Reserve is situated roughly 17km from Stanford en route to Gansbaai and is absolutely magic. It was by far the best value for money, considering that all our guests stayed over for the night and we had a three course meal with breakfast included the next day. We didn’t have a theme, but instead we stuck to three simple but classic colours: white, charcoal and mushroom. The table layout was quite simple as well, adorned with only a large bonsai tree and a smaller one for each guest as a wedding gift.

Neither of us is religious, so we had a Zen teacher from the Dharma centre in Robertson marry us in a forest ceremony. Jacques’ vows were a highlight for me – they had everyone in tears. The ceremony only finished once our rings had passed through a long piece of Nepalese twine that literally connected all the guests. Everyone had a chance to touch the rings and bless them before they finally came back to us.

Music has always been a big part of our relationship, and for the ceremony we ditched the classic wedding march and instead I walked in to a Black Keys song called Everlasting Light. Jacques and I also made a CD with some of our favourite songs on for each guest to take home.

Our friends & family were one of the best parts of the day – we are blessed to know the most awesome group of people in the world. Also a deserved mention should be made about Werner and Mariaan {Picture Me & U} for capturing the uniqueness of our day with their own special style of photography.

My advice to future brides would be to allow yourself enough time to compare different prices and options. This really helps if you have to work around a budget. Advice is great, but remain true to yourself. This is the only way your wedding will feel natural and real. Make peace with the fact that not everything is going to be perfect. It’s not worth it spoiling your wedding day because the icing on the cake is the wrong colour. Two weeks before the wedding should be your cut off point for trying to control everything. After that…well, what will be, will be. As for resources…Thanks mom!

And thanks to you, Jacques and Quinta! Wishing you a wonderful life together. I’m delighted to be featuring Picture Me & U for the first time too – thanks Werner and Mariaan! You can see even more from this lovely wedding on their blog.

Venue, catering & cake: Grootbos Private Nature Reserve | Photography: Picture Me & U | Bouquet & corsages: Okasie | Bonsai: Rosier | Decor & hiring: Function Hire | Bride’s dress: Vera Wang | Hair & makeup: Elizabeth Fourie | Officiant: Heila Downey, Dharma Centre