A Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

Today’s wedding is just STUNNING. I love it when couples plan their weddings their way. This wedding is proof that you don’t have to follow trends or the latest big thing.

Everything Chule(our bride) said resonates so much with me and I know it’ll be the same for some of you. Sometimes there are no butterflies, no on one knee proposal somewhere exotic but there is real love and that’s all you need.

How did you meet?

We met at a business meeting. I had decided to stop terrorising boys and give dating a break and date myself. He had also decided that dating was not for him. The 1st time I saw him I thought he was cute but thought he was too well put together to be single, anyway I was dating myself so I pushed my feelings aside. 

After our second business meeting, he asked me out on a date. I told him I was dating myself and he said he respected my decision. I decided to go on the date as a friend. After our first date, we saw each other every day. 

Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

A Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

How did he propose?

This was my dream proposal. I was 3 months pregnant ( after trying for months with no success) and we were getting ready for bed. I was wearing a sweater and socks. He got quiet and pulled me to sit on his lap. He pulled out a box and asked me to open it. In the box was his late mother’s gold watch, her only earthly possession. He asked me to marry him and I said yes. I wore it on my wedding day.

Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

Lobola

He insisted on paying lobola. For him it was because of the huge support my mother has been to our family over the past 5 years of our relationship and he wanted to honour her and say thank you. 

His father came from Malawi and his grandmother came from Zimbabwe. His father coming to support him was a beautiful healing moment for both of them. My 2 uncles and big brother represented me. They asked me exactly what I wanted and involved me in the process. They said for them its about building families and that this was more of a formality as they loved Quintine no matter what. 

The negotiations happened the weekend before the wedding at my mother’s house. Quintine and his grandmother waited in the car. I wasn’t allowed to see them. It was very relaxed and joyous. I was called in and told that the Yiwombes have asked for me, do I recognise them and do I agree for the negotiations to continue. I said yes. My uncle told me about marriage and that its a covenant not a contract that I must be certain about. He asked again and I said I was sure. 

After the negotiations, we celebrated with food and getting to know each other. It was incredible.

How did you find the planning process?

I had an amazing wedding planner and the venue was incredibly professional and supportive so it was a great experience. Also, I was very relaxed and understood that our wedding was a platform to spread love, renew family ties and heal. My wedding planner and the venue both said I was the calmest bride they’ve ever worked with. The wedding was just a cherry on top, being in a committed partnership with my best friend and continuing to build a life with him and our daughter is the cake. 

A Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

What inspired your wedding style and how did you pull it together?

Our theme was African Royalty. I’m South African and my husband is Malawian but grew up in Zimbabwe, so for us, it was important to celebrate our Africaness with the people we love.

I picked Malawian material that I, Quintine and Mali would use as part of our outfits. The deco was simple and rustic with the king protea being the central attraction. 

Essentially our wedding was a mesh up of African aesthetics in a Western event framework.

Was the community involved in helping with the wedding? If you please tell us more…

No, unfortunately, the wedding was in Johannesburg and my family is from the Eastern Cape. But my community of friends and family were very hands-on.

Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

Marriage is such a big deal, at what point did you know you were ready.

Our union has always been very strange. We both knew from the first date. I’m not a believer in romantic love. I believe love is a choice that you have to make every day but we could not deny that there was this force pulling us together. I even broke up with him because it was freaking me out and just felt so abnormal, lol. But that break up lasted a few hours and I decided to stop resisting and surrender. I highly suspect that his late mother and my late grandmother set this whole thing up.

To us, we’ve been married for 5 years, it’s just that the party happened on our wedding day, lol.

Tell us about your suppliers, how did you find them?

I had worked with my wedding planner, Gisela, owner of Gisela Gold on our launch of the Economy of Women so I knew how creative, inspired, incredible, elegant and timeless her work is. 

I also worked with my photographer Thabang from Thabang Photography in business and her creativity, passion, attention to detail is incredible. She referred us to Jabu from Jabu Nkosi Photography for our video and it turned out like a dream. Our cake supplier Kersti from 13 @ the Anchor has been our family cake person for 5 years because her cakes not only look gorgeous they taste amazing.

My incredible one of a kind dress was made by Mbali Tshabangu, her care, craftsmanship, professionalism, and love for her clients is obvious in how my dress turned out.

We found Motozi Lodge our venue online. When we got the quote we thought its too good to be true but when we went and saw the venue it was amazing. Motozi is a well-oiled machine and the owner Laura is so in tune and passionate that you just relax.

Would you say your suppliers delivered as promised? 

Everyone went above and beyond what they promised.

Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

Did you learn any lessons through your wedding journey? If so can you tell us of 3 lessons you’ve taken away based on your experience…

Faith, manifestation and how much my family loves us!

When 2019 started we had no way of paying for the wedding but we knew we had to do it. We put our manifestation into high gear and surrendered everything to God. Family came in to help in mind-blowingly generous ways, our businesses grew, we got major discounts and cleared so many abundance blocks along the way.

I also learnt how resilient I am. The week of the wedding I was hosting in-laws, moving house and chasing a client deadline for a 48min pilot script (My first time writing long-form) and getting married! But I made it with so much grace. I’m proud of myself for that.

A Stylish Wedding With The Bride In A Malawian Inspired Dress

What was the favourite part of the wedding?

My father walking me down the aisle. Our relationship had been strained for many years after the divorce until he got sober. So he has been feeling so guilty about the time we’ve lost, so much so that he didn’t even think he’d be invited to the wedding and was genuinely surprised by the invite. My mother was the one who insisted he walks me down the aisle. Her spirit felt uncomfortable about walking me even though it was logical because she raised me. She prayed about it and the Lord asked her to give him that honour. Bontle Bride: Your mom is such an incredible woman. So for me watching my father forgive himself and my mother extending a loving hand to him was one of my favourite moments. Also watching my husband and his father fall in love and heal was incredible.

My mother’s beautiful speech and my big brother’s love-filled toast are etched in my heart forever!

And obviously being with my best friend throughout.

What would you say to couples planning their wedding at the moment?

Relax and enjoy it, the wedding is not validation but a celebration.

Now that you are married, has life changed much? Do you both have the same friends or are you making new ones? If so tell us a little about how you are adjusting…

Nothing has changed. We sold our home (in 2019) after only 1 year of buying it, bought a new home, got married, renovated our new home and didn’t kill each other but instead grew much closer. Our relationship is creepy cause we always felt married so life is the same, just continuing on our journey of expansion, growth, healing, joy and prioritising peace in our home.

Suppliers

Planner: Gisela, owner of Gisela Gold
Photographer: Thabang R Photography
Video: Jabu Nkosi Photography
Cake: Kersti from 13 @ the Anchor
Dress: Mbali Tshabangu
Venue: Motozi Lodge

A big thank you to Chule and her husband for gracing our pages with their gorgeous wedding. If you love weddings with a flavour of culture, click here.

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