Well… What can I say? Today’s featured wedding is full of twists and turns. From the proposal story to guest’s who found it rather difficult to find the venue. This wedding was simply an Experience. I love the proposal story. It’s such a special touch to melt two coins from different countries to make rings (brilliant and unique idea).
Liapeng and Greg had a white wedding in Germany and a traditional sotho wedding in South Africa. For their traditional wedding. They had African dancers, delicious African food and judging from the images lots, and lots of laughter.
The Proposal Story
We knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together, and told this to each other, before we were engaged. We often told friends and family that we were married in spirit, that is, that were committed to one another as spouse, long before we celebrated our wedding or got engaged. The closest thing to an ‘proposal story’ is the moment when he asked her if she wanted a ring, even if we were, to us, married/engaged already.
She said yes, and since he had secretly been planning a ring already, he asked her to close her eyes and when she opened them he was hold a 1.4ct cushion cut natural yellow sapphire from a wonderful company called Wild Fish Gems. Since these rings are meant to symbolize our love he wanted everything to be right and the gem should have been ethically mined and cut, and most importantly natural (without filling, treatment, radiation or other tricks to remove inclusions and flaws).
She was surprised and moved, and they had a wonderfully romantic moment gazing at the lights sparkle in the stone. The wedding ring with the sapphire and his wedding band were crafted by his sister-in-law, both using gold made from inseparably melting a German and a South African gold coin together – yet more symbolism. She had already said yes a long time ago, so that was a pretty sure
The Planning Process
Planning is easy, when you’re not the one doing it…We had two weddings – one in Luxembourg and one in SA. The two of us planned this wedding, spending a lot of time and effort to get it just right. Since we were based in Luxembourg, the South African wedding was planned by her family. Her parents, aunts, uncles and some cousins formed an organizing committee and did a fantastic job delegating tasks, arranging everything, including accommodation, transport and a cultural program for the European guests. Our biggest task was to organize the European guests regarding flights, as well as trying on outfits once we arrived in SA two weeks before the big day.
Sadly, or fortunately, since we did not organize the event, we have little to say about the suppliers/vendors. The wedding was a labour of love of her family though and much was micro-managed to perfection. All went well on the day, with only a few small issues with the marquee and rain in the morning.
But everything was wonderful though – the food was tasty, the décor was stunning, and the flowers couldn’t have been nicer.
One Thing You’d Change
Better directions or a large sign at the turn-off. The venue is near impossible to find using the official address, so some guests got lost, a few from abroad with rental cars got very lost. But weddings are meant to start late they say.
Hint Of Culture
We had a ‘European’ wedding in Luxembourg, in Schengen in fact, a place many only know from their passport when travelling to Europe, but few know as the small village where Luxembourg, France and Germany meet. This wedding was lacking traditions on purpose.
The second wedding, in SA, was therefore an opportunity to make it traditional – several guests told us that they loved it because they had not been to such a traditional wedding for a long time.
There were South African dancers kicking things off, leading the bride and groom down a long driveway to the marquee. They returned on two more occasions, delivering amazing performances. After the starters we went to change from our first outfits into our traditional seshoeshoe outfits. This was later followed by an exchange of Lesotho blankets.
There was much dancing, grand entries, and all of it managed to include all guests – his family did not feel like tourists at an ‘African’ wedding, but like participants. We were all family! Especially our little niece from Norway was so thrilled with the two seshoeshoe dressed she was given on the day and wore them gingerly.
Express your relationship through the wedding… Just reflect on what makes you a great couple, how you respect one another, and how you think that can be allowed to permeate through the celebrations in as many ways a possible. In total we had a lobola negotiation, a civil marriage, a European wedding, and a South African wedding – at each step we were able to express a different facet of our love.
First our families exchanged family commitments in the negotiation, then we exchanged our personal commitments (we were alone for our civil marriage… just the two of us and an officiator), then we shared our commitment with many of our friends and our families, once in Schengen and once just outside Johannesburg.
Liapeng and Greg thank so much for sharing your wedding on Pure Wedding Blog. I’m sure I speak for everyone who reads this that we loved and enjoyed it very much.
Photographer: Zuzi Seoka
Venue: Private Venue
Dress: 2 Dance Manufacturing +27 123325770
Suits: 1st Outfit – Hugo Boss Suit; 2nd Outfit, shirt – 2 Dance Manufacturing CC
Décor/Venue Styling: Timeless Tents
Flowers: Jason’s Flowers
Caterer: Elias Letswele