Zelna and Hennie are such a special couple to me ... full of life and fun, it was a wonderful experience working with them! They are so much in love, and it comes through so strongly on camera.
Their wedding was set to be a very relaxed and vintage affair, and as they love South Africa and all its history we decided the best setting for their engagement shoot was Reefsteamers. This is one place that I love to work at, there are so many awesome places to photograph, and we walked around admiring the hard work that goes into the restoration of the beautiful old ladies.
As Hennie is also an avid photographer, he took great pleasure in comparing his Canon to my Nikon, and the afternoon was filled with loads of laughs and jokes. Adding to his delight, I pulled out my vintage Canon Film Camera and the two had a few funny selfie moments, and pretended that they were doing their own photoshoot.
This memorable afternoon ended with a spectacular Johannesburg sunset, and then we sat with the Reefsteamers team and waited for Susan, the oldest steam train in the yard to return from her Cullinan trip.
Thank you to the Reefsteamers team who allowed us to use the facility and for being so amazing with your historical knowledge. Thank you also to Makeup by Shandre for Zelna's stunning makeup, and lastly to my tireless assistant Michael for all of the help on the day.
Hennie and Zelna you are both fabulous, and I really wish you all of the happiness in the world as you deserve it. May your love grow and continue to blossom for many years to come!
Here is a peak at Zelna and Hennies fun e-shoot:
As the morning of Morongoa and Basil's wedding dawned, it was destined to be a day filled with excitement, emotion and incredible beauty. The amount of planning and detail that they had incorporated into their big day resulted in the most beautiful day with so many intricate details.
When we arrived at Oakfield Farm, we were greated by a very emotional Morongoa, it was finally here, the day she would say I do to the love of her life! While bridal retinue was hard at work getting themselves looking glamorous, we went off to the photograph the incredibly beautiful reception decor in Homestead. The team at Oakfield Farm and Cafe Fleur had been hard at work, as not a thing was out of place. The whites, pinks and silver colours gave the reception a very elegant and stylish feel, which reflects the couple so perfectly.
As the morning slipped away, and it was almost time for the ceremony, the men decided to have a whisky to steady the nerves. They looked very dashing in their grey suits, and had an awesome time doing some photographs with Diana who was my second photographer for the day.
The ceremony started with Tiro singing Ave Maria, and Basil was visibly nervous and a little emotional. The nerves all vanished as his beautiful bride walked down the aisle towards him, and was replaced biggest smile I have ever seen. After a lovely ceremony, Morongoa and Basil suddenly looked very content and relaxed. Although we had run a little late, and had a short time for the formal couple shoot, we got some lovely images of the couple, before it was reception time. The reception was a huge party, starting with the bridal party entering while doing the harlem shuffle. Delicious food, some emotional speeches and loads of dancing and laughter completed this amazing day.
Thank you to all of the amazing suppliers (listed below) who really worked hard to make this day perfect for Morongoa and Basil. A huge thank you also goes to Diana, who was amazing to work with. Its awesome to have you as part of my team, and look forward to working with you again!
Lastly, to Mo and Basil, thank you so much for allowing me to be part of this amazing day, it was a honour working with you both. I am blessed to have you in my life, no longer as clients, but as friends. I wish you the all of the best, and may your love continue to grow stronger as the years pass.
Thank you to all of the amazing suppliers:
Samantha and Francois, had the most beautiful and very steamy engagement shoot in March this year. Their E-shoot was scheduled during the wettest months in Johannesburg, where we had no sun for days on end. Poor Samantha was very stressed out, and was ready to postpone right up until the morning of the shoot. A few panicky messages went back and forth between us, but as morning dawned, we woke up to the most perfect sunny weather. I do believe, to this day, that it was a sign that these two are meant to be together!
We arrived at the rather wet, but fabulous venue for the shoot, Reefsteamers in Germiston, and were greeted by the friendliest people, who are all volunteers that restore the old steam trains. They were so excited to see us and showed us the engines we could go inside and opened up the sheds so we could use different locations for the shoot.
Samantha looked beautiful, having had her make-up done that morning by Shandre, and the couple looked amazing together in their simple but elegant outfits of blue jeans and white shirts. Can you believe, Samantha and Francois had never really been in front of a camera and were super nervous about this? They are smoking hot and the camera just loves them! This young couple are just so in love and comfortable together, they needed very little coaching to get the steamy and sexy images.
Here is a peak at the E-shoot we did with this fabulous couple .... Sam and Fafa, I love you guys, you are amazing and I am blessed to have met you and to now call you my friends!
A huge thank you has to go to my second Chris who ran around with me, climbing up and down engines and made the day run a bit smoother, as well as to the amazing Team at Reefsteamers who provided us with the perfect location.
Reality TV shows, such as Cake Boss or our local Charlys Cake Angels, have changed the way we see, think and feel about wedding cakes. Especially the way they look and taste. These shows have led to an explosion of different and unique options, sizes, shapes, flavours, colours and decorating techniques – nothing is impossible or too much. As there is just so much choice out there, I have decided to try and give you a few tips to consider when choosing your bakery and wedding cake.
The first step, before even meeting with your decorator is to think about what colours you want your wedding to be. For some brides this is easy as they have been planning this day since they were 5, while for others it is a little harder. The best thing to do is to start gathering ideas and inspiration of the things you love. This can be done online (Pinterest is a fantastic tool) or by looking through magazines. If you have a Pinterest board, this will make it a lot easier for your decorator to get a feel of what you like and want for your wedding day.
Booking your cake decorator:
To avoid disappointment, it is best to book your wedding cake decorate/bakery early. Like most things wedding, all the good decorators get booked months in advance and are therefore quickly fully booked. And specialist bakers will limit the number of cakes they make a week.
When you make an appointment to meet with your prospective cake decorators, be sure to bring along your Pinterest board, magazine pictures or any photos that can be used as a guideline. Also bring along a copy of your invite, table centre pieces and/or flowers. Think about the theme and colours you want on your cake: traditional white with splashes of colour or maybe something more fun and unusual.
A great thing to bring along is fabric swatches, as they can give the decorator a good idea of the colours, theme and general look and feel of your reception. Keep in mind that, your cake should match the theme of your wedding and can or should be the centre piece of your reception.
The size of your Wedding Cake:
The size of your cake is traditionally determined by the number of people that will be attending your wedding and when you are planning on serving it. You do not want to be left with three quarters of your cake after your wedding. Therefore, it is important to discuss this with your decorator.
In terms of when to cut your cake, it’s a new trend to cut it straight after the ceremony, as this gives your guests something to nibble on while you are having your photos. Another trend is to use your cake as part of your dessert table.
Hence, be sure to discuss the number of people and when you are planning to serve your cake with your decorator, so they can advise on the size of cake required for your wedding.
Type of Wedding Cake:
Tiered cake, cupcakes, mini cakes, cake pops or push pops? A tiered cake always has a wow factor and really forms a centre piece at your reception. However, cupcakes, mini cakes or cake pops are just as pretty and much easier to serve. Something to keep in mind is that people can easily take home their cupcake, meaning you are not left with additional cakes. However, with a slice of cake, unless you provide boxes, they are not easy to take home.
Wedding Cake Flavours:
Wedding cakes are no longer just plain fruit cakes; they now can come in whatever flavour you desire, whether it is vanilla sponge or red velvet. The options and choices are limitless. Therefore, it is best to decide between yourself and your fiancé what flavours you like and which you don’t like. This will make your choice a little easier. However, if you can’t choose, select a few flavours and ask your decorator if you can do a cake tasting. Often a cake tasting is an additional cost but it is worth it, as you want a delicious moist cake that you and your guests will enjoy on the day.
Overall look of your Wedding Cake:
Buttercream icing is delicious, but doesn’t give a beautiful smooth finish to a cake like fondant does. Also, fondant allows your cake decorator to be creative with your decorations and make beautiful trimmings for and on your cake, such as sugar flowers, piping and painting. Another trendy icing option is chocolate ganache, which is very rich and gives an almost smooth finish to your cake. If you like the look of fondant but not the taste, speak to your decorator about the possibility of icing your cake with buttercream or chocolate ganache and then covering it with fondant. This will mean that it looks great and tastes great too. Just remember elaborate decorations, sugar flowers, trimmings, etc will add to the cost of your cake.
An easy way to make your cake look fun and unique is to include cake toppers. A relatively inexpensive option is to purchase cute porcelain or plastic bride and groom toppers. Alternatively, you can order monogram letters. Otherwise, speak to your decorator about making sugar flowers or gum paste figurines to top your cake. These are edible but can also be kept for years.
Paying for a Wedding Cake:
Cake prices are usually based on the size of the cake, i.e. number of servings and the intricate, time consuming little details that need to be added to the cake. Be prepared to pay a deposit to secure your booking, as you are unlikely to find a decorator that will even start your cake without a deposit. The balance is usually payable 2 – 3 weeks before your wedding date.
It is important to find out if your cake decorator will deliver and set up your cake on the day. As well as, what the additional cost would be or if it is included in the cake cost. Finally, keep in mind that you will need a cake stand for the day of the wedding. A lot of cake decorators hire them out. You would need to find out if that is possible and what the cost would be. There are many hidden or forgotten costs when choosing a wedding cake, so be sure to ask all these questions and more upfront.
Last thing to remember is "let them eat cake" and enjoy your wedding day!
A big THANK YOU needs to go to L’il Delights (www.lil-delights.com) for helping me gather and put all this info together, and for the increase in dress size as I am often used as the taste tester of all sorts of deliciousness!
One of the most amazing couples I know, Carrie and Greg, got married in December at the beautiful Morrells in Northcliff. Their theme was vintage French and it definitely had the wow factor! The shabby chic decor included a variety of flowers, little perfume bottles, silver teapots and bird cages with little birds. The little details along with the fabulous venue suited this classy couple so well with its simple elegance.
When I first met them, Carrie explained that the little birds that were incoporated in the decor were a tribute to her Mom who would be watching over them from heaven during the day. I am pretty sure that this little touch, along with the amazing lady that Carrie is, made her mom proud and smile down at the beautiful couple.
Carrie looked magnificent in her vintage inspired gown from De La Vida Gowns, she took her handsome grooms breathe away as she walked down the aisle. The day was perfect in every way for this lovely couple, even the weather played along with us, as the huge thunderstorm that threatened all day only hit when every one was inside the reception enjoying the delicious cocktail dinner.
A big shout out goes to all the suppliers (listed below) for making Carrie and Greg's Wedding day so perfect. Another big thank you goes to my amazing second photographer Sherrie for all of her hard work in assisting me.
To Carrie and Greg, my ginger couple, you guys are fabulous and I just love you! I am so lucky to have met you and to have shared your day with you. Its awesome to count you as friends, and I wish you both huge success in your careers and a very happy and long life together.
Here is a peak at their special day
A huge shout out to the amazing suppliers that made this day so perfect:
Venue, Food and Flowers: Morrells – firstname.lastname@example.org
Wedding gown: De La Vida Bridal Couture - email@example.com
Wedding Officer: Ryan Hogarth – firstname.lastname@example.org
Wedding Cake: Annicas Cakes – email@example.com
Grooms Suit – Khaliques Fordburg
Wedding Stationary – Scrap Crazee Meyersdal (Kathy)– firstname.lastname@example.org
Make up – Makeup By Monique - email@example.com
Glamorous is the word that comes to mind when I think of this young couple ... Nikki and Fotis are both Doctors who have the most insanely busy schedule, but they pulled off the most fabulous wedding at Saheti and the Johannesburg Country Club in Woodmead last October.
From the colour scheme which reminded them of the sunset on the beach in Greece where Fotis proposed to his beautiful bride, to every last intricate detail, this is a wedding I will never forget. Nikki looked amazing in her fabulous gown, Fotis very handsome in his bowtie and tuxedo. They are a beautiful couple in every way.
It was my first time photographing a Greek wedding, and things are slightly different with the exchanging of rings by the best man and maid of honour and the Stefana ceremony followed by the walking around the altar, so it was very exciting for me. To top it all off they celebrated into the night with the traditional Greek dancing, throwing of the plates and the men dancing around the whisky glass.
I would like to thank all of the suppliers who made this day so perfect for them, as well as Chris who was my second photographer for the day, and took care of things when we were at different venues. Lastly a message to the lovely couple ... Nikki and Fotis, it was so special being part of your big day. I wish you both and your families all of the best and that you have many happy years together.
Here is a peak at their fabulous day
Morongoa and Basil are a beautiful couple with a stunning little family. The minute I met them in the little coffee shop in Brooklyn Mall to discuss their wedding day plans, it was an instant connection. I love the way they look at each other, the way they interact and of course how good they look together.
Their love story is pretty awesome, Basil saw Morongoa in a Mall and instantly knew that he wanted to know her better. I think for him it was love at first sight! A couple years later and a little girl who arrived to complete their family, they decided it was time to get married. As they both love nature and water, we decided the best place to do the shoot was at the Pretoria Botanical Gardens.
The afternoon arrived, it was perfect weather and the whole family including Morongoa's 2 daughters joined Chris and myself for this fun and fabulous shoot. Here is a peak at a few of our images from their E-shoot, I would like to thank Chris who was my second and ran around with the children for most of the afternoon.
To Mo and Basil ... words can't describe how much I love you guys!
The 25th of August was the big day for one of the most amazing couples, Evadne and Jerome, who tied the knot at a spectacular winter themed wedding at Avianto in Muldersdrift.
I worked closely with them during the planning of their big day and as they are both perfectionists, not a thing was out of place. The decor was spectacular with crystals hanging from the trees and sparkles everywhere, and true to their nature the guests were well taken care of with a very yummy sweet table and flipflops to dance in. Evadne was fabulous in her Maggie Sottero Gowns and Benjamin Adams shoes, while Jerome was an incredibly handsome groom. It was a very emotional wedding, and both Sherrie and I had to wipe tears away during the vows. My absolute favourite moment in this wedding is the look on Evadne's face when Jerome tells her she looks beautiful as she got to the front of the ceremony.
To this amazing couple, thank you for being so wonderful. You both looked fabulous on your wedding day and I loved being part of your magical day. I wish you great success and many happy moments together. Thank you also to the suppliers (listed below) who helped them to create the Winter Wonderland!
All our love
Chantal and Sherrie
When Erin contacted me to photograph her wedding I was super excited as this is a very interesting couple. Erin is really outgoing, talented and drop dead gorgeous! She is a TV and radio presenter, a DJ, singer, song writer, musician and a bass player. Add to that a lady who loves her Harley and it makes for a fabulous combination.
She grew up in Detroit and has that awesome American accent, but met the love of her life Stephanus (a South African) in Oman. This fun quirky couple decided to settle in Johannesburg and had a small and intimate ceremony at Ascot Mews in Alberton. It was attended by Stephanus's close friends, a very sweet couple and Erin's parents via Skype, as they live in the US.
All I can say about this couple is they are awesome, from the selfies taken during the couple shoot to the pulling out of their tongues at each other it was a short but super fun wedding to photograph. After the couple shoot all Erin wanted to do was eat ribs in her fabulous Vera Wang gown. To Erin and Fanie, I wish you loads more fun times together, quirky moments and lots of love shared between the two of you. What a priviledge to have met you and to have photographed your wedding!
Angela and Tys are such an amazing couple, they have so much love for each other and its so evident when you see them together. Chris and I were fortunate to get to share their Wedding day with them on the 10th of August 2013 at the stunning Oakfield Farm Wedding Venue in Muldersdrift.
The day was perfect, not one thing out of place. The decor and flowers were a beautiful combimation of Sweet peas, Roses and Protea's which made the reception venue smell like a spring garden. It was a lovely winters day, we were blessed with beautiful warm and a calm but slightly emotional couple.
My favourite touch of the whole day was the garter ... The Blue Bulls pin as Tys is a Bulls supporter, Angela I must add is a very passionate Sharks supporter!
The couple shoot was filled with lots of laughs and giggles as the animals at Oakfield Farm decided to make themselves part of the wedding, and even ended up in a few of the photos. From the horse that made it known that we were in his territory while we were in the stables to the cows that followed us through the fields it was a fun but rather noisy couple shoot!
To Angela and Tys, I can't thank you enough for asking me to photograph your wedding. It was a true fairytale wedding ... Both Chris and I wish you many happy moments in your life together, filled with the same giggles and laughs we saw in the stables, and the same love we saw in the chapel. You are a wonderful couple in every sense and I am so fortunate to now call you friends.
Thank you to the lovely suppliers (listed below) for all their hard work and dedication in helping to make Angela & Tys's wedding day a beautiful reality.
Chantal and Chris
Quirky and often described as rather eccentric, I am a lover of all things beautiful. Capturing special moments and making my clients look and feel beautiful is what makes me happy!