Happy Friday, folks! You know, I see a lot of Victorian country vintage being in this industry at the moment. Some days, I think I may have seen every bit of vintage I may ever want to. And then I come across a wedding that embraces the olde look so beautifully that my love of lace is renewed. Today’s wedding is one of those. Vasthi and Lourens chose the romantic village of Matjiesfontein for their destination wedding, just two and a half hours from Cape Town, but about a hundred years back in time. The town has a fabulous history tied in with the railways, and is immediately evocative of colonial South Africa, so it was absolutely perfect for the vintage vibe they wanted to create. Look out for their mason jar candle invitations (LOVE 3D invites!) and some of my favourite country florals ever, not to mention the bride and groom’s outfits! Gorgeous. Images are by the wonderful Judy Stofberg of Just Judy Photography, and she has totally nailed the spirit of this wedding in her pictures, which to me is always the mark of a great photographer. Hope this makes your day, just as it has mine!
The lovely Vasthi sent us all the details:
Lourens and I met through mutual friends when we both got invited to a “get together”. During the evening, I noticed him sitting alone at our table, a mysterious stranger. I joined him and I found myself feeling comfortable in his presence (as an introvert, this was strange behaviour for me). Before the end of the evening he had asked me to accompany him to his year-end function. Even though I stubbornly assured him that I was not interested in being in a relationship, he managed to innocently sweep me off my feet after just our first date. He was honest “to the bone” and passionate about so many things, I found myself captivated.
It is as if our souls were braided from the same piece of string and we knew that we would be companions for the rest of our lives. A bit more than four years later, he secretly designed a ring and asked a friend to make it for us. One evening in April, Lourens managed to recreate those first days of getting to know each other. I found myself being treated with flowers, food, music, wine and champagne. I looked away for a moment and when I looked back, he was on his knees with a ring in his hands.
I hadn’t thought much about weddings before that evening but we made a few decisions almost immediately. We wanted a cosy winter wedding, we did not want a stretched out engagement, we wanted our friends and family with us for as long as possible and we wanted everyone that shared the day with us to have a feast! Matjiesfontein was the first venue that came to mind. The town’s colourful people, rich history and readiness to provide visitors with good memories were reasons enough. The date was set and everything fell into place (with a lot of help from my sister and her organisation skills). There were less than three months to prepare, but advice and help from friends and family were readily available.
We wanted the day to be true to who we are and to reflect where we come from. We asked our parents to be our “best” men and ladies; they are our role models and we wanted them close to us during the ceremony. We also tried to keep to the old world feel of Matjiesfontein. The colours were inspired by the faded greens, purples and pinks of the Kales, herbs and succulents with a bit of black for the dramatic effect. Our “candle in a bottle” invites showed pictures of our parents on their wedding days and could be used again by our guests if they wanted to (my dad did most of the design and printing himself). Broken china, gathered over the years by Lourens’ mother and arranged by friends of the family into console bottles, rusted words from a corner vendor and old silver (originally used on the Blue Train) found places on our tables. Fabric flowers, throws for the tables, draping, covers and small blankets were made by my parents and friends. Extra large cakes in all our favourite flavours were baked by the Vineyard Superspar in Paarl. Small herb plants added colour to the tables and served as gifts for all the ladies (some of them now grow in their gardens).
The most special moments for me: walking into the church behind my mother and Lourens’ mother (they were holding hands), leaving the church to be greeted by Karoo rain mixed with rose petals, walking into our warm venue (the Matjiesfontein Transport Museum) all cold and wet to the music of el mariachi with all our friends and family holding burning sparklers (we’d originally planned for these to be part of the speeches, so we didn’t expect this!) – it was an amazing moment.
My advice for couples planning their special day is to be true to yourself, don’t take things too seriously and make sure that the day is shared with people that know your hearts – they will be there to enjoy the day with you and will laugh with you later about the things that worked out differently than planned.
A big thank you to Vasthi and Lourens for sharing their day and for such a lovely wedding story! And another big thank you from me to Judy – I always so love featuring your pictures! You can see more on her blog right here.
Venue & catering: Matjiesfontein Transport Museum and the Lord Milner Hotel | Co-ordinator: Delmaine at Matjiesfontein, Ilani Dijk (my sister), Natalie Jansen (Friend) | Photography: Just Judy Photography | Flowers: The Flower Cottage | Decor: Superfloral | Hiring: 4 Every Event | Cake: Jo-Anne von Willingh and Pedro Cofica from the Vinyard Superspar (Paarl) – 021 863 3871 | Invitations: Bottles from Console Glass, Paper from Paper Paradise (design & print by bride’s father) | Bride’s dress: Griet de Villiers | Bridesmaid’s dresses: Annelies Haarhof from Claube (Paarl) – 021 872 5598 | Makeup: Ilani Dijk ([email protected]) | Nails & massages: Louise Briers ([email protected]) | DJ: Abrie Steenkamp (DJ Stone) – [email protected]