Real Wedding at Groenrivier {Huibré & Schalk}

Time to kick off our real weddings for 2011!! And I can’t think of a better one to get us started than Schalk & Huibré’s. It’s the PERFECT balance between laid back, vintagey farm cool and stylish sophistication; I die over the little details every time I look at them. The stationery is, quite simply, amazing. Playful and eclectic and totally covetable. (Of course, it never hurts when the groom’s aunt is the fabulous Elsje of Elsje Designs!) The venue is gorgeous (Groenrivier in Riebeek West, about an hour from Cape Town). And Ian Mitchinson‘s pictures are quite simply… wow. (Wait till you see the couple shoot taken around Riebeek Kasteel) I can’t even pick which is my favourite part – the plum coloured dresses, the antique brooches on the bride’s bouquet, the SHOES, the homely little vintage touches like coffee cans and kitchen scales adorned with roses… and the truly astounding part is that it was organised in THREE MONTHS! Yes, it’s actually possible (although I’m convinced Huibré must be some kind of wedding savant to pull this off). So prepare to be awed!

From Huibré:
We met at Varsity. Schalk will tell you that I stalked him, but the real story is that we both studied Engineering and that he wanted my notes for a subject that he ended up passing with better marks than me! We both like to work with our hands – our first project together was restoring an old Honda CB650 motorbike. We got engaged in October 2009 and didn’t want a long engagement. We were so excited, we just wanted to start our lives together! We decided on a date when all our families would be able to make it and drove around to find a venue for that date. Groenrivier was the only venue that could accommodate us (what a blessing it was such an awesome place!). After booking the venue I made the calculations and realised we only had three months to get everything ready!

We decided to go with a homely farm theme. Schalk is a farm boy from Koffiefontein in the Freestate and my family also has a strong farming background. We used old lanterns, scales and containers that my mother-in-law lovingly lent us. I tried to make every table unique and only used elements that were true to us and that we both loved.

In the beginning, I didn’t have a colour scheme. I tried to pick a colour for my bridesmaids that they would look good in and then, after sending out the invites and choosing flowers, everything ended up being shades of purples, pinks and olive green. I wore sterling silver earrings of my own protea design made by a family friend – I loved them! I also loved the suit that Schalk wore – it was beige linen – and all the guys had suspenders. We made special packages for all the groomsmen and bridesmaids, with hankies, mints, lip ice (lip gloss), jewellery, ties, socks, etc. This made them feel special and part of the wedding. For the flower girls (and other young ones) I had disposable cameras, and a tick off list of all the things that they had to take photos of.

We tried to do as much as we could ourselves to cut down on costs. For favours we had porcelain heart magnets (made by my sister) and fig jam (made by my mother-in-law) for the ladies, and bottle openers (made by Schalk and his dad) for the guys. My mother made my veil. I punched out all the confetti and made the lemonade we served to guests as they arrived at the ceremony (great idea, as it was a scorching hot day and everyone was so thirsty!). For dessert, I opted for all traditional family favourite chocolate desserts, and these (as well as the wedding cake) were made by my mother’s friend. We were married by my father, who is the Minister at NGK Stellenberg, and Schalk’s aunt Elsje of Elsje Designs did all the stationery. We loved spending quality time with everyone in preparation for the wedding, and having everyone that’s special to us with us on the day!

Huibré’s top tips:

  • When you choose something – tick it off and don’t rethink and ponder the issue
  • Get as many helping hands as possible to help with the decorations and setting the tables
  • Reserve seats in church (my mom didn’t have a spot when she came in late)
  • Write down your speech (I forgot to thank the most important person – my sister, and my brother who came from overseas)

A big thank you to the happy couple for allowing us to feature their lovely wedding, and to Ian for his gorgeous pics! You can see more on his blog.

Service providers:

Venue: Groenrivier
Catering: Melita Joubert
Photographer: Ian Mitchinson
Venue for bridal shoot: Cafe Felix
Minister: Callie Visagie (NGK Stellenberg)
Flowers: Jolize from Floral Affairs
Stationery: Elsje from Elsje Designs
Music: DJ Wally (Worcester)
Dress: Bride & Co.
Shoes: Zoom

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