Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The couple
Melissa and Quinten met when they were teenagers, and he made his move when she was 17. Even though Melissa claims it was her worst kiss ever thanks to Quinten’s nerves, he must have done something right! Quinten proposed on their sixth year anniversary, and they spent the next two years preparing for their wedding day back home in South Africa.
Photography: Trent Saunders, Durban
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The wedding veil
The wedding veil
Melissa’s stunning and unusual bolero and two layer veil were made by Emine Ahmet of East Dulwich 020 8693 7221 using Nottingham lace and tulle.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The wedding dress
The wedding dress
Melissa’s beautiful diamond white dress was made in the UK by Maggie Sottero (www.maggiesottero.com). It featured a lace bodice and an asymmetrical satin wrap revealing a lace inset panel. The fan back train was sprinkled with crystal and pearl accents.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The bridesmaids
Melissa’s step-sister Natasha and friends Kim and Candis were her attendants and wore floor length plum Thai slab dresses and matching chiffon jackets made in Durban by Brenda Ogle (+27 31 563 8132). They carried bouquets of twisted Leonardo roses and fern, tied with a chiffon ribbon and wore burgundy and plum exotic bloom hair accessories.
Melissa gave each girl a silver pocket mirror with their names engraved on them, whilst the groomsmen received engraved cufflinks and bottles of Amarula, a South African liqueur.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The flower girls
The flower girls
Two Megans, one from Quinten’s family and one from Melissa’s were the flower girls, and they scattered fresh rose petals down the outdoor aisle. Their satin dresses had a delicate burgundy chiffon underlay at the back and were made by Quinten’s mother with the help of a friend.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The wedding flowers
The wedding flowers
Melissa’s traditional bouquet of deep burgundy roses and fresh greenery was classically striking and coordinated perfectly with her attendant’s outfits. Her florist Sweet P of Umhlanga (Sandy Munday +27 31 561 6443) used long stemmed grand gala roses with virgitas ferns to create a romantic and unique look.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The wedding venue
The wedding venue
The ceremony and reception were held at Braeside, a beautiful sugar cane estate in Ballito. The couple celebrated in an exquisite outdoor gazebo and a hall that opened out onto the surrounding gardens. Braeside’s wedding planner, Jo Blackmore was an enormous help to Melissa from the planning stage right through to the big day. “I couldn’t have done it without her,” says Melissa. “She must have answered over 100 of my emails!”
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The style
Rich burgundy, plum and white were used throughout the venue, with dramatic long stemmed roses for the table centrepieces and favour boxes wrapped in delicate burgundy ribbons. Vases were placed on mirrors with martini-glass candles to enhance the romantic mood.
“The candlelight flickering off the glass vases and crystals set a wonderful mood in the evening,” says Melissa. The tables were laid with the same burgundy organza with a shot of black, and the hall was draped in white.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The wedding cake
The wedding cake
Although Melissa wanted a romantic Cinderella-style wedding, the couple also wanted to incorporate Quinten’s fun personality and interests into the celebration. The cake’s unusual topper showed Quinten as a kite surfer and was custom made by Ginni Brinkley of East Anglia www.claycorner.co.uk . The cake, made by Food Matters, Ballito, had two layers of carrot cake with pecan nuts, pineapple and butter cream icing and a top layer of vanilla sponge.
Melissa & Quinten’s romantic South African event – The details
Melissa organised the entire wedding from the UK, liaising with suppliers through emails and phone calls. For a twist on the traditional wedding table plan, she chose to hang escort tags from a tree to help guests find their tables.