Hey, my loves! How are you today? I hope your weekend has been a blast whatever it is you got up. I have a gorgeous Zulu and Zimbabwean wedding to share with. Although the groom is private(hence why you won’t see him on the pictures), the bride was happy to share her journey with us. Grab a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy this gorgeous wedding.
How did you meet?
How did he propose?
This is a very long story but it happened on a Sunday evening. He proposed the day before my Birthday. He made dinner reservations at 5 pm. Sundays are usually busy for him because he plays at church for 3 services. Anyways while I was getting ready for dinner. He got a phone call from his manager who he was producing music for at the time. So he told me he had to run an errand and he will back. Fast forward to an hour later, I received a phone call from a mutual friend that my husband had some car trouble and she will be coming to pick me up instead. (Keep in mind this was all part of the proposal plan). I was a bit disappointed because I needed a second opinion on how to wear my hair. So my friend secretly sent him a text, he told her how I should wear my hair which was the cutest thing.
Anyways when we made it to our destination. We were at his manager’s house, I didn’t see his car so I was clueless as to what was happening. My friend dropped me off and when I walked in the house, I wasn’t ready to see three camera guys, rose petals, candles lit all over the house. As I walked towards him he was singing and playing the piano. What was going through my mind was how romantic this man can be to make my Birthday so special and little did I know that he was about to pop a question of a lifetime.
Zulu & Zimbabwean Wedding
Our cultures are slightly different since his from Zimbabwe but they also do lobola which is called “Roora” in Shona. Since we reside in the United State he wasn’t able to travel for the lobola negotiations. So he had to send his Brother and Uncle to travel from Zimbabwe to South Africa. When we set a date for lobola day we were both so anxious and new to the whole process. My husband had to write a letter to my Father to introduce himself. It just so happened that my sister was going to visit South Africa from the U.S and she took the letter with her. After reading the letter my husband’s family set a date for lobola to take place.
When the date was set, we decided that we didn’t want to miss out on the experience that’s when we planned to do a traditional wedding in the U.S and invite our close friends and family. In the beginning, it was a bit stressful with communication from out of the world and two different cultures coming together. They are some rules that have to be followed that I wasn’t aware of and that’s when I learned that a traditional wedding isn’t yours but it’s for your parents. Somethings we wanted to do had to be approved first by them. It was all a learning experience for us both. At the end of it all, it went very well.
How did you find the planning process?
We first talked about doing a small celebration. We discussed it with my sister and her husband who also live in the U.S. They offered to do it at their house since this celebration has to be done in a home that you were raised at. The guest list we wanted was 30 people max. That was impossible with my husband being in the music industry. There’s a lot of close friends that we wanted to invite but we had to cut it down to 50 people. It was one of the challenging things in this because I had to cut off a lot of people and remind myself that this is something small we will invite them for our white wedding.
Deco: We used a lady who is very well known in our State. She delivered up to our standards. I couldn’t be anymore happier. She called to remind us to get things in order and checked to make sure we have things done on time.
Outfits: I worked on the bridesmaid outfits and my husband did the groomsmen. The outfits were a bit complicated for the ladies because I wanted us to wear the whole Zulu attire and being in the U.S it just costs so much to order it from the vendors here in the U.S. So I had to search for people online. I went on Esty, and Instagram. With help from my bridesmaids, we found a lady located in Johannesburg and her prices were very affordable. She wasn’t new to delivering to an International customer. Well long story short after I’ve discussed our outfits and I was just short with sending her money she got in a bad accident which resulted in her going into bed rest and our order had to be canceled. We went on a search and found a lovely lady in Cape Town. I don’t know anybody in Cape Town and the lady took a risk because this was her first International order. We had to educate each other with money transfer and shipping. I trusted her because she was so good at communicating with me.
Was the community involved in helping with the wedding? If you please tell us more…
Sometimes friends are like family. We both have most of our family members in Africa and with the small community that we have in the U.S, they were all so helpful. I have a sister here and my husband has nobody but when he moved to the U.S he was adopted by a lady from Zimbabwe that would host him and his friends when they came on tour. That lady became a Mother figure for him and her family helped with buying groceries for our traditional wedding.
My sister gathered her friends and whatever we requested to be on the menu it was all done. Since it was our traditional wedding we wanted our menu to have all the South African food Boerewors, Chicken curry, Chakalaka, Pap, Mogodu, etc…
Not to forget to mention this, my sister’s neighbor who was born in Zimbabwe and raised in Bulawayo is a close family friend to us. She has a sister who lives in Cape Town and was coming to the U.S to visit. She brought our Zulu attire for me and my bridesmaids. That made my year. I couldn’t be anymore
Zulu & Zimbabwean Wedding
Marriage is such a big deal, at what point did you know you were ready.
Honestly, when I’m asked this question I tell people that you will never be ready. Before marriage, we both had things we wanted to first accomplish before we settle down. Society has us thinking I should have all my debt paid, have a house then get married but sometimes things happen at a different time for everyone. Even after getting married, you are still learning something new about your partner.
For me, I knew I was ready when I accepted to love my husband’s indifference. I learned that some people have indifferences that cannot be changed no matter what you say or do. They are who they are and it’s up to you if you are willing to deal with that for the rest of your life. Only God can change a person.
My Husband is a God-fearing man and the love he shows me is the same love God gives us. The minute I saw that happening in the 3 years we’ve been together I knew that this is the man I can spend forever with. He understood the true definition of unconditional love.
Please tell us what inspired the overall look of your wedding, don’t be shy to tell us all the gritty details.
What inspired my look as a bride I actually saw a picture online and I added a little modern look in it. I loved the Zulu brides look but I just wanted my look to be different with a twist of elegance. For the bridesmaids, because of the season we are in which is winter I wanted to go with something bright for the ladies. I had initially decided on all white for them and since my husband and I love black we were going to do all black. When I discussed this with my sister she was about to lose it hahaha… She was like how in the world did you figure out that would be good.
Fast forward: we then settled for yellow skirts for the bridesmaids and all-black shirts for the groomsmen. I wore white with colorful beads. Zulu beads meant a lot for people don’t know that they were historically used as a language between men and women to express their feelings and relationship status. I decide not to care what season we were in and just go bright or go home.
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…
I learned that some things are totally out of your control the day we got married. It rained and I’m not talking about raining for just an hour then it goes away but it rained all day all the plans I had for our pictures went out the door. The setting of the tables had to change and some deco couldn’t be displayed that was paid for already. I was totally disappointed. I wasn’t having it and I learned that by me focusing so much on the negative that I couldn’t control ruined a one time moment that I will not get again.
I also learned that they’ll always be that one or two people who will give you a difficult time about what you want for your big day and you just have to be patient with them at the same time don’t change things to make one person feel comfortable or everything in your wedding will be based on what others want and not what you want.
What was the favourite part of the wedding?
My favorite part was hearing all the speeches from our close friends and family members, one speech that took my breath away was my “Mother in law” she said she doesn’t want to be called a “Mother in law” but a “Mother in love.” Little did she know I had her number saved on my phone as Mother in love from the day I first met her. My mother in love is like my second mother she was genuinely happy and so welcoming. I will forever remember that moment. My other favorite part was serving my husband, I had to get a jug of water, a bowl and wash his hands. To me, I have never done this before and I think in this world we live in that has been taken away. It was a good experience for me. The other great moment was me coming in with my bridal party and singing “umakoti ngowethu” and of course the dancing the night away. Everyone was on the dance floor which just warmed my heart to see a room full of happiness and love.
What would you say to couples planning their wedding at the moment?
Have a budget but also set aside money for just in case you go over your budget especially if you are also planning on having a white wedding. If something is out of your budget for your traditional wedding talk it out with your husband to see if that particular thing is a requirement and if they are other ways to save you money. Somethings we had to pay for convenience because on the day of the wedding things tend to go wrong at the last minute. Secondly: Always, always have a backup plan. And do not wait until the last minute to add something that is a big deal for you both. With us planning to have our white wedding we knew that for our traditional we could go without something because the minute you mention wedding to someone the prices just go up. Make sure that you still have money for your bills even after the wedding day because sometimes it’s not that we intentionally forget but when you are planning your wedding that’s your only focus and you tend to forget about other life events.
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, once we got married we’ve just been so blessed it’s like God opening up so many doors for my husband. We look at each other and laugh how marriage is portrayed differently than what it actually is and it’s just a beautiful thing to be one with someone. Our circle of friends has always been small and people that didn’t belong in our lives have drifted away before we got married. We made a lot of changes during our dating time which wasn’t easy for me but playing a leadership role at church helped me through that process to grow and if my principals aren’t aligned with yours I would separate myself from certain events.
Some adjustments that I had to make in this new journey was to be dependent. That’s a struggle for me because I lived by myself for a long time. I used to work full time and I decided to quit my full-time job and go back to school full time and work part-time. Having to depend more on my husband I am still learning that partnership role. Overall we are all about having fun and enjoying every minute together.
Thank you for sharing your journey with us Precious. Good luck with the white wedding.
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