An intimate, warm, romantic affair, surrounded by tangible love
Photography by Coba Photography
Talk about making a girl feel special on her engagement? Alex, knowing that one of Cassi’s most enjoyable things to do is visit the wine lands to do wine tastings, took advantage of this and decided to take Cassie to Rickety Bridge wine farms to do just that, little did she know that this was not going to be just an ordinary wine tasting day!
Cassi’s brother, being somewhat of a connoisseur in that department was asked for his opinion as to which one of the farms on route would be the best option to propose at. So Alex prepared the way and arranged with relevant people on the tram to get pictures of the entire proposal, which in hindsight was the best thing to do, as Cassi says, “I was so taken aback by the moment and afterwards it all felt like a blur, so it was really special to have those pics. We both cried pretty much all the way through the proposal as well as afterwards. Another huge positive was the fact that both our phones were flat, so we couldn’t make any calls right away and just got to enjoy the moment alone. He shared the whole story of how he planned the engagement, how he chose the diamond, how and why he chose the setting and all the planning that was involved. That story in itself is so special, and it made me feel super special.”
The venue they chose had everything they were looking for. The vision was to have one long table under beautiful trees, and with the correct lighting to create a romantic atmosphere. The beautiful Franschoek Mountains was the backdrop to the area where the canapes were served, and Cassi says she loves how they turn pink at sunset. The unique vat cellar at the venue was perfect for the ceremony and Cassi says she could rely on its natural beauty and the drama it offered without adding anything.
The word Cassi uses to describe their wedding is “tangible-love.” She says that it was such an intimate wedding you could actually cut the atmosphere of love with a knife. That love came not only from the love between Alex and her, but the love the guests had for them and their future.
The theme for their day was to have warmth and romance. To achieve this they chose their main colour to be burgundy (the colour of wine) and a big factor was the lighting as this creates atmosphere. 80 metres of café lights and 350m or warm fairy lights were incorporated into the different materials to emphasize and reflect the light, such as the clear ghost chairs, the gold cutlery and glass under plates. Candles were place in glass containers and a canopy of fairy lights was draped over the dance floor.
Less is more regarding the flowers as Cassi and Alex opted for low arrangements, mainly because they wanted the guests to see each other. They wanted all their guests to be seated at one long table so that it felt like one big family and that everyone was sitting at the main table!
Cassi says to achieve her look was a bit of a shock to all as she chose a gown that is uncustomary to her “plain jane” style. She describes her gown a being bigger and more over the top and so she kept the rest very minimalistic. She wore classic ‘wedding style’ earrings only. She walked down the aisle in a pair of beautiful heels, but opted for comfort and switched to espadrilles straight afterwards and was grateful for this decision as parts of the photo shoot was like hiking in the mountains to get that perfect shot.
As life sometimes is, there was something that was botched on their special day. They chose the most beautiful 4-tiered cake, but on a 37 degree day it collapsed and ended on the floor, so they made do with just one tier and no one was the wiser and didn’t even know.
As their wedding favour they handed each guest a USB music stick. Not just ordinary sticks, they planned this one carefully. At their engagement party they handed out little business cards that looked like cassette tapes. On the back was: I ……………………… (Name) do solemnly swear to dance my heart out at the wedding if you play this song. Artist …………………… Song ………………………. All those songs went onto a branded USB that matched their stationery and they added their hashtag to it. They also included all their personal favourites and the wedding ceremony and cake cutting etc. music to it. The idea was that everyone would plug it into their car and hopefully would enjoy the memories of their special day.
The couple were unfortunately affected by stage 4 load shedding on their special day. They rented a generator to get power to the area where the girls got ready; can you imagine no hair dryers or curling tongs? The area was only meant to be effected in the evening so the venue had rented a massive silent generator and the whole reception was run off this generator. However, there was a surprise outage just before the ceremony and the cellar would have been just too dark. So ultimately the decision was made to delay everything by 45 minutes whilst the load shedding took place. The guests all had drinks whilst they waited which added to the festivities, and the ceremony was short anyway, so it all worked out in the end.
Cassi describes the highlights of her wedding in the following way:
• The sleep over with my mom the night before the wedding was very special, I read her my vows, we chatted about her wedding day, we’d lost my granny and so we spoke about her a lot, it was very cathartic and special.
• The whole day of getting ready, my mom and mom-in-law were there it was such a relaxed special time. I was surprisingly relaxed.
• Walking out in my wedding dress for the bridesmaids to see, very overwhelming.
• Standing at the doors waiting for the bridesmaids to walk in before I could go into the cellar, knowing Alex would be waiting for me at the other end of the aisle, I remember looking at my dad, my eyes were filled with tears and I said: “I just want to marry him.”
• The walk down the aisle, although it looked more like I was sprinting I was so eager to get to him, I did not see a single other person in the room, only Ali.
• I loved the confetti toss, I’d always wondered what that would be like, and you should do this more than once at your wedding it’s so much fun!
• The speeches were a huge highlight. They were short, sweet, funny and truly about us as a couple, it proved how well these people knew us and understood our love. It also showed how much we were loved, they were beautiful!
• Our first dance. We did not have anything rehearsed; in fact, I don’t think we’d ever danced to that song before, ever. But the song had so much meaning to us, we sang the lyrics to each other, kissed and held each other, it was beautiful.
• The photo booth was another highlight. We had a photo booth with unlimited prints for 2 hours. We opened it only once the dance floor was open, this was a major hit with guests and they got to take home their photo strips for the memories.
In short she describes her day as spectacular. They did not compromise on their vision and the food was truly decadent and in abundance, there was an open bar, the décor was magnificent, and only the people who truly matter to them attended. Cassi says, despite planning every detail down to a tee herself, she had a coordinator on the day. She wanted to attend her wedding as the bride, not as a wedding planner. She adds that she soaked up every minute, and kissed Alex as much as she could.