We had quite a few viewing appointments with different wedding venues early in
January. When I phoned Oxbow, at first they said that they were already fully booked
for 2018, but that we were welcome to view the venue anyway. I told my mom
“what’s the use in viewing the place, if they don’t have the date that we have in mind
available?” But she suggested we go and view the venue anyway…
What we found was a beautiful venue in a tranquil nature setting, with rose gardens
and meandering waterways. Oxbow Country Estate stole my heart at first sight – a
chic country-style venue that sweeps you off your feet, with its relaxed sophistication.
My dress, where to start… I wore the Ali gown, designed by Anna Georgia – a true
masterpiece and likely the most beautiful dress I have ever seen.
based in Pretoria, introduced me to the dress, arranged the sewing thereof and
assisted with alterations so that it fit me like a glove.
The Ali gown features a beaded
bodice with a plunging neckline, low back and georgette whimsical skirt.
I had the bright idea of planning my own wedding, while I was a full-time final year
Although the wedding was in December, planning for the wedding
started not long after we were engaged, as I knew what the academic year held in
store for me. Looking back, I could not be more grateful that I started planning when
I did. By March most of the wedding planning was in order: the venue, photographer,
dress, flowers and cake had all been arranged.
This gave me time to focus on my
studies and only left me to worry about the remaining little things – those I managed
to pin down after my exams were finished in November.
The Stylish Wedding Day
My bridesmaids and I enjoyed a delicious breakfast at the venue before we started to
get ready for the big day.
Our décor colour/theme was white and green with a touch of rose gold, which
complimented the venue and its landscapes perfectly.
We got married in the venue’s outdoor pavilion, situated in the heart of an
immaculate rose garden overlooking a breath-taking waterside. After the ceremony
the guests were invited to craft gins and canapés while Dune and Schalk did what
they do best: preserving our big day for years to come with their inspiring
Our reception was held at the Riverbed Hall, a room that is architecturally designed
to include natural lighting, lovely views and the most beautiful water reflections at
night. We had an awesome mirror photo booth which offers instant prints – the
guests could not get enough of it!
The party ended with a lovely boma “kuier” in the heart of the Oxbow gardens where
the young guns enjoyed themselves until the small hours of the night.
Tips For Future Brides
Dear future bride,
Remember that your wedding day is your day and your day only.
It is one day in your life that is all about you. Not about your mom, sister, guests or
anybody else, but you (well, naturally, your groom plays a fairly important role in the
day as well, but I think you understand where I am going with this).
Do not try to
please anybody but yourself and do not invite masses of people who you will
probably never see again.
All those in attendance at our wedding contributed
immensely to our lives and are people we speak to regularly – this ensured that we
shared the day with those who would make it truly special.
Start planning a year ahead. People might think that you are silly, but neither they
nor you can foresee the challenges that may lie in wait. There will undoubtedly be
obstacles along the planning route that consumes more time than you could have
imagined, so rather be safe than sorry.
Finally, enjoy every single moment of your special day, take 5 minutes to take it all
in, look in the mirror before you walk down the aisle, appreciate all your hard work
and planning that paid off. Trust me, nobody will even notice the little things that you
think ‘went wrong’.
List of Service Providers
Venue: Oxbow Country Estate
On the day coordinator: TJ Swart
Flowers and décor: Bee Happy Events
Photographer: Dune Kahlau Photography
DJ & Photobooth: Mega Music
Dress: Calegra Bridal Pretoria
Suit: Hugo Boss
Hair and Make-up: Alecia Joubert from UBELLA
Cake: Miss Cake