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Floral Wedding Dresses

If there’s one trend that has just EXPLODED all over the runways and new collections this year, it’s flowers and floral prints. And these are not like your typical flowery dress, oh no. Combine gorgeous colours, pretty prints and watercolour effects with bridal shapes and dreamy fabrics, and you get something truly spectacular – real little works of botanical art. I’m stoked that a couple of our real brides over the years have been ahead of this curve, but I’ve seen so many pretty examples on the wedding web of late that I couldn’t wait to share my favourites with you in a roundup. And since our theme for July is ‘Greenhouse’, there’s never been a better time! Read more

Blue Hydrangea Wedding at Longridge Wine Estate by Leanne Love {Nikki & Lloyd}

Happy July, lovelies! It’s appropriate that we’re kicking off this month – which we’ve themed around the idea of ‘greenhouse’ (think everything floral, botanical & beautiful) with a wedding that took its inspiration from a flower, and one of our favourite flowers at that. Hydrangeas are just so gorgeous, I absolutely love them, and they always give weddings this lovely summery feeling as well as a naturally ombre/watercolour vibe. Nikki & Lloyd filled their vineyard wedding and reception with these blooms, and reflected the colours in everything from stationery to bridesmaid dresses (beautifully made as always by our friends at Gelique), to their adorable getaway car. And talking of adorable, it’s super cute that the couple had little dog attendants alongside their human ones! Leanne Love was on the scene to capture these wonderful pictures. Read more

Bridal Boudoir: What to Wear

Guys, we’re at the end of our month of Natural Beauty, and it’s been fun to focus on the hair, makeup, beauty and natural side of things for the last few weeks, including some absolutely beautiful boudoir sessions. For me, boudoir is a great way to make a bride-to-be (or any woman!) feel beautiful – it can be a gift for your fiance sure, but I think it’s really a gift to yourself. Because let’s be honest, when it comes to our bodies, most of us are pretty unforgiving of ourselves. Seeing yourself through a photographer’s lens is a chance to see yourself differently, in the best light really (flaws and all) – the way that your partner sees you. Which is all awesome, but what the hell do you wear? ;) Now personally I’m a fan of the more subtle form of boudoir rather than the FHM-style shoots, but however you choose to play it, the key thing is to wear lingerie that makes you feel comfortable as well as gorgeous. You can go as covered up or as daring as you like, but you want to feel confident. So no matter what your shape or style, here are some top tips for what to wear, as well as highlights from some of our favourite collections to inspire you. Read more

Glamorous Navy, Pink & Gold Wedding at Brenaissance by Marsel Roothman {Frances & Cobus}

Oh how do I love thee, today’s wedding? Let me count the ways (settle in, this may take a while). First off, I’m busting to tell you all how off-the-charts gorgeous it is, with its navy, pink and gold palette against a crisp white background, and its thousand tiny clever and original details from co-ordinators, Kraak (golden swallows on the dancefloor! craft beer bar! gold print napkin menus! salt escort card placement! etc. etc. etc.) I’m also about ready to write an essay about how amazing Fleur Le Cordeur‘s florals are – everything from the romantic orchid and wood arch in the ceremony area to the cascading arrangements on the tables to the little pink and gold pots of roses and hydrangea and tulips. Most of all though, I can’t wait for you to see the smiles on Frances and Cobus’ faces. In five years of doing this, I honestly don’t think I’ve seen two people who look happier to be getting married – their joy kind of spills over in every lovely photograph by Marsel Roothman, so that I just want to jump up and down and do a little happy dance with them. Get ready to break out some goofy smiles of your own – this is one cool wedding. Read more

Inspiration Board: Terracotta & Tulle

Holy cannoli, is it seriously July already? Well almost, and with just a couple of days to go until our Natural Beauty month comes to an end, this inspiration board is actually the perfect way to segue on to our next theme – although I’m not telling what it is just yet! When I was thinking about natural textures, I couldn’t help but think of terracotta, one of my absolute favourite warm colours and a look that really reminds me of Mediterranean sunshine, as well as pottering about in a garden shed. Pairing it with tulle might seem like strange bedfellows, but then we already know that opposites attract in wedding design, and I love the rustic edge that terracotta brings to a dreamy, romantic wedding design in shades of beige and blue.

Colours: Powder blue, beige & terracotta

Top row (l-r): Tablescape {Carrie Patterson Photography/Lily and Co.}; place setting with terracotta charger {Ozzy Garcia}; bridesmaids {Danielle Poff Photography}
Row 2: Bride {Elizabeth Messina for The Knot/Catherine Sheppard}; boutonnieres {Elan Klein Photography/Sweet Emilia Jane}; calligraphy {Beaux Arts Photographie/Oh, How Charming!}
Row 3: Chair with veil {Elizabeth Messina}; long tables {Jose Villa Photography/Flower Wild/Coastside Couture}; plant pot favour {Vela Images}; curtain ceremony backdrop {Sarah McKenzie/Two Be Wed/Maxit Flower Design}


How to Find a Maternity Wedding Dress with GF Bridal Couture

We talk wedding dresses a lot here on SBB, but there’s one type that we’ve never really covered before, and that’s maternity wedding gowns, aka gowns for pregnant brides. Now I think a bride never looks more beautiful than when she has that gorgeous mama-t0-be glow, but at the same time, I imagine it’s a bit of a challenge to find the perfect dress when you’re not a hundred percent sure what your body is going to be doing between that first try-on, and the big day. You’re dealing with a whole new body shape, basically, and it’s hard enough for us to flatter the one we normally have, right? It’s your wedding day, and you want to look amazing, not like you’ve been swaddled in a big white mumu, or squeezed into something that shows every lump and bump either.  Choosing a maternity wedding dress is definitely a unique challenge, but fortunately help is at hand. We’ve teamed up with our friends at GF Bridal Couture in Johannesburg (whose impressive bridal range includes a specialised section of beautiful maternity dresses) to answer all your questions on finding the gown of your dreams when you’re dressing for two. Read more

Romantic Country-Chic Wedding at Orchards by Crystal Malloy {Julia & Geoff}

Don’t you just hate people who tell you that rain on your wedding day is a blessing? Because, come on, everyone’s hoping for a dry day for their nuptials (even if it is lucky). But here’s what I can honestly say from both personal experience and featuring hundreds of weddings on the blog: some of the best weddings happen on the days that the heavens open. I don’t know if it’s the fun photo oppportunities or the feeling of intimacy that develops, or maybe it’s just a bit of devil-may-care attitude that creeps in when the best laid plans have to be abandoned and everyone just relaxes and remembers what really matters. Whatever it is, I’m a fan, and today’s wedding just goes to prove my point. While Julia and Geoff didn’t have a downpour, there was enough of a spatter to get the umbrellas out and create that beautiful cold, clear light that rain brings with it, which streamed in through the windows at their ceremony, and made their country chic decor at their reception in shades of pink, purple, coral and red look even more pretty and inviting. I love the colourful touches that make it all work together, from the stunning bouquet to the berry-shaded bridesmaid dresses, and every lovely moment was captured to perfection by Crystal Malloy. We don’t have the bride’s words to share today, so instead let’s just sit back and let the pictures tell the story themselves. Read more

Bridal Beauty Timeline

Hello lovelies! When you’re putting together your plans and timelines ahead of your wedding, you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s all about those practical things – the bookings, the logistics, the budgets. Or even the creative ones – the palettes, the pretties, the DIYs. But it’s also about you. Unless you’re a supermodel, you probably don’t fall out of bed looking the way you want to on your wedding day, and some of the beauty regimens and prep work need to be started months or weeks in advance, just as much as any dressmaking or stationery ordering. To make it easy for you, as we love to do, we’ve created a printable, tick-off-able timeline just for you! Now, let me be clear. At SBB we believe that the most beautiful bride is one who is the best version of herself. We’ll never tell you that you need to starve yourself, or change your appearance, or even wear a ton of makeup if that isn’t your style. You want to look like YOU – after all, that’s the person your fiance fell in love with, right? So take all of this with a pinch of self-awareness. You do not need to bleach your teeth or shape your eyebrows or get a self-tan before your wedding day. But if you want to, I’ve included those things on the list, so that you can plan ahead. Let’s get planning, shall we? Read more

Persy Bridal Spring 2016

One of my happiest memories as a little girl is going to watch the ballet – I was just swept away by all those beautiful costumes, and the perfect fluidity of bodies in motion. I still love ballet – I just wish I went to see it more often. So when I saw designer Yaniv Persy‘s latest collection had a touch of the ballet about it, it immediately had my attention, and that was even before I fell in love with the ethereal draping, the magically intricate bodices, and the clever little details. Earlier this year we introduced you to the first collection from Persy Bridal, and I’m super excited to share the Spring 2016 collection from this hot couture label – every dress of which will have a bride feeling like the prima ballerina. Read more

Organic Jewel Tone Wedding at Roodezand by Heather Steyn Photography {Yolandi & Benjamin}

So unfortunately we’ve had some site downtime the last couple of days (hopefully now all sorted), and as a result, there’s a ton of stuff I’m dying to share with you, so today is going to be a particularly busy day on SBB. And we’re kicking it off with an absolutely beautiful jewel-toned wedding, with flowers that just took my breath away when I saw them (that bouquet!), a gold cake, and a spectacular wedding dress that just happens to be created from the bride’s grandmother’s vintage gown – so special! Benjamin and Yolandi are the most adorable couple, and they incorporated all their favourite colours and textures into their ‘loveleigh’ day – a day that was as cozy and intimate as it was gorgeous – making it not only lovely to look at, but personal and memorable too. Heather Steyn had no shortage of sweet moments to capture. Read more