We met on my birthday 3 years ago. He walked in with a mutual friend dressed in black tie and we both knew this was something special. He was the best birthday present I could have wished for!
Roydon had spent time filming in Mallorca over the years and always wanted to return there. It was his first proper holiday in many years and he knew he wanted to propose on that day as it was the only day we hadn’t planned anything and left it to chance to see where we ended up. We hopped onto a vintage wooden train, journeyed through the mountains and booked ourselves into gorgeous boutique hideaway Cas Xorc surrounded by Olives trees and Orange Groves. Looking out over the incredible view standing in the garden he surprised me with the proposal. It was a magical day.
My dress was by Cape Town designer Elbeth Gillis. I saw her dresses in the UK actually where live but discovered she was based in Cape Town where our wedding was so I had it made there instead. I chose a style that was simple and classic with seed pearls and chantilly lace that felt special but still comfortable. It was incredibly light and I loved the detailed illusion back. Elbeth stitched a small cut of my moms wedding dress on the inside of my dress covering my heart so that was my something old which I thought was a really special touch. I had 1 fitting with her a few months before, 1 the day before the wedding and it fitted like a glove and was so easy!
We are both South African so it was the perfect opportunity to share such a beautiful place with our family and friends. We had the ceremony in the gardens of Casa Labia in Cape Town which is a gorgeous Italian inspired villa and art gallery overlooking the sea, followed by the reception at our favourite restaurant The Harbour House in Kalk Bay Cape Town. It has the best seafood and is set in a tiny harbour on the edge of the sea so at high tide the waves crash against the windows. It even had resident seals in the rocks which our guests loved. It’s relaxed nautical all white shabby chic interior was perfect for us.
At the reception we wanted a bit of local flavour so I enlisted the help of my schools Music department who played traditional African Marimba music for the guests – it created the most wonderful upbeat and fun celebratory atmosphere.
On one of our first dates, Roydons friend Folk musician Alexander McKay had come around and played some songs while they worked on a film project called “Stones” together and I absolutely loved his music. Little did I know that when I walked into the reception I would be greeted by Alex singing a new song that he and Roydon had spent months writing especially for the occasion. It was so personal and such a special moment, I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house!
The Best Decision
We chose to have a destination wedding which meant a lot of people came from far and wide. The exchange rate also worked very much in our favour and in theory we should have had sunshine (although it did rain!).
By far the best thing we did was have a welcome drinks at the Alphen Hotel in Constantia, a gorgeous Destination closer to Cape Town. So many guests commented on how this helped them connect with others, my mom made it her mission to meet and greet every guest and we got to catch up with all our friends who had travelled as well as the local ones. This meant that on our wedding day we could all just relax and Roydon and I actually enjoyed it together (and my mother didn’t have to leave the dance floor!)
The Worst Decision
Having the post wedding brunch so early the morning after! There were some seriously sleepy faces around the table the next day!
The Beauty Prep
I wanted this to be simple and for me to look like myself. Natural was key for me and I used Bobbi Brown SA creative Director Gerhard Naude for the makeup and Dita Smit from Furr Hair for very natural hair – both were so professional but also provided much laughter on the day.
Givenchy Dahlia Divin
My incredible sister and best friend Kate who made my wedding so special with all her planning. She lives in the US and found their gorgeous gowns from Nordstrom. My other bridesmaids were my school friends Jen, Simone and Nel and my friend from uni Pippa- all incredibly special, talented women.
List of Vendors:
Venues: Casa Labia, Muizenberg Cape Town South Africa, Harbour House Restaurant, Kalk Bay, Cape Town
Dress: Elbeth Gillis
Shoes: Something Bleu
Photographer: Michelle Van Staden Photography
Hair: Dita Smit Furr Hair
Make-up: Gerard Naude of Bobbi Brown
Flowers and Planner: Liz Puccini Creations
Cake: Christa at Florentines
Invitations and all printing: Chris Swift at Wizards Constantia Village