Etienne and Lauren Wilson

Lauren remembers:

How did your groom propose?

The week before the Soccer World Cup, Etienne proposed standing up (no bended knee for my groom!) at a weekend getaway in a tent at a little place called Thandeka Lodge. We decided to postpone calling our friends and family (even my mom) until the next day, so that we could savour our engagement evening without any phone calls. We had met the five other people staying at the lodge on a game drive earlier in the afternoon. They were the first to hear our news and we celebrated with complete strangers in front of a bonfire, wrapped in blankets, drinking red wine and sharing stories.

It was surreal.

Tell us about the theme of your wedding.

We got married at Morrells in Northcliff. I was sold on the venue the moment I saw the staff walk towards our car to greet us as we parked. Morrells is the kind of venue that doesn’t require a theme or additional decor. With its mismatched antique chairs and tables it was the perfect venue for a bride who did not want chair covers and table runners. I did not have a colour scheme but gave Morrells an idea of a palette I liked and flowers I loved. The stargazer lily and orchids are my favourites: I wore a stargazer lily in my hair and my cascading bouquet had orchids in them.  The first time I saw the flowers and decor for my wedding reception was when I entered the room as a married woman and I was blown away – it was better than I had ever imagined.

And the menu?

For canapés we enjoyed grilled wild mushroom, courgette and cherry tomato brochettes; pommes frites; and slow-braised beef short ribs served with braised baby onions and baby carrots topped with celery and homemade puff pastry. The starter was a charcuterie platter – a selection of cured meats, sausages, pickles, pâtés, terrines and fresh breads, while the main course featured carved beef fillet with pepper potato mousse and ratatouille. Dessert was a decadent selection of lemon and strawberry chocolate tarts, mille-feuille layers of crips puff pastry with vanilla crème, truffle popcorn and ice cream.

What was the highlight of the day?

Choosing one highlight is so difficult because there were many special moments, from my mother helping me get dressed to sharing a drink with my family before the ceremony, exchanging vows with my partner and partying till the wee hours of the morning with my friends and family (I even had to put on Havaianas slip-slops at 11pm in order to dance better!). The most emotional part of the day for me was walking down the aisle to my future husband and seeing him with tears in his eyes. I must have chewed on seven Rescue Remeby tablets by that time but nothing can prepare you for that wave of emotion that hits you as you take your first steps towards your future partner. It suddenly hits you that you’re actually getting married – everything else is just a dress rehearsal…

Any special advice for brides to be?

Communicate with your service providers. Our day was a reflection of our personalities because we both spent time sharing our likes, dislikes and ideas with our service providers. My husband even themed our photographer “Laughter” and asked Laura Jane, our photographer, to capture me laughing.


Little black book

Cake, decor, food and flowers: Morrells Boutique Venue 011 476 9495;

Dress: Eve’s Bridalwear  011 268 5599;

Entertainment: Jonathan Feeka (based in Durban); email

Groom’s  outfit: Shirt tailored by Fops Tailors 078 733 6655 and suit tailored by Dilaner Shah 073 548 8424 using material sourced from Parts & Patbull cc 011 836 0754

Groomsmen’s outfits: Hired from Eurosuit 011 807 4000;

Hair: Jacqui from Soul Scissors in Parkhurst 076 800 0298

Make-up: Michela Benigno 072 611 1844;

Stationery: Invitations from The Letterpress Company 083 740 5375;

Order of processions from Elephant Shoe Love;

Photographer: Laura Jane Photography 076 046 6188;

Venue: Morrells Boutique Venue 011 476 9495;

Videographer: Mona-Lisa Productions 083 609 7366;


This feature is taken out of Wedding Inspirations magazine Autumn 2012

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