A while ago we showed you the typographic and modern styled invites
we designed for Danielle and Matthew. You know, that crazy couple that surprised their guests with an engagement-party-come-wedding and planned it all in less than a month? Today we're showing you a glimpse into that special day where everything came together to create the perfect day where love, friendship and laughter were shared. James Gibbs
along with his wife Cally, were there to capture every moment, including Danielle's beautiful wedding dress that was made in one week
. Yip, you read it right, one week. Beautiful madness!
names of the bride and groom: Danielle Brock & Matthew Laubscher
and year of your wedding: 27 July 2013
Eagle Wind Manor, Botha’s Hill
and/or Theme: Rustic with a contemporary twist
what’s your love story?
Matthew and I actually went to brother-sister schools, Pinetown
High Schools, and lived just a few kilometres apart. We also shared many a
weekend together as our best friends at the time were dating, but we didn’t
even take notice of each other until many years later. It’s funny how things happen, hey? It was
while I was studying at Rhodes University, and Matt at Durban University of
Technology, back in 2008, that we really got talking and thought, ‘why not?’
and started a rather treacherous long-distance relationship 800km apart, me in
Grahamstown and Matt in Durban. We dated for two years before we both packed up
our memories and moved to the big smoke of Johannesburg to begin our careers – me in
Journalism and Matt in Photography.
We just loved setting up our home (three times) and playing
house with our two little children (read cats), Major Tom and Girlfriend, and
after over five years together we thought ‘why not?’ and decided that it was
time to get married.
Well, in true Matt-Dan style, we did things a little
differently. Getting engaged was a mutual decision for us and so, on a winter’s
evening while popping to our local mall to get a few groceries, we walked by
Browns Jewellers and did a little window shopping. Within seconds, window
shopping turned into trying a few rings on and just a few minutes later we had
several sales ladies surrounding us, waiting to pop their celebratory bottle of
champagne in the honour of our engagement! With the chosen ring on my finger, I
turned to Matt and said, ‘Are we doing this?’ to which he answered, ‘why not?’
There was a shriek from the staff at Browns, a pop of a cork, and many iPhone
photos ready for Instagram. It couldn’t have been any better in my books as I’m not one for
romance or surprises (I’m too much of a control freak), and after all, it was a
team effort – a sign of things to come for our future.
was the best lesson you learnt through planning your wedding?
I am a control freak of note, and have notes everywhere of
things I always wanted for my wedding. However, when the time came and you
realise that you are getting married for marriage, and not married for a
wedding, you go with your gut and together with your fiancé, make decisions
that you both agree on, on the spot. I guess we had added pressure as we put
our wedding together in less than a month! So yes, I think I learnt not to
over-think things, go with your first decision, and with what you and your
fiancé want (no one else) because after all, it is YOUR day!
tips for brides to be?
As a bride, you become overwhelmed with the wedding. You feel
like the whole world is watching you to see how great it will be. Remember, it
is your day, and if something isn’t completely right on the day, no one will
know except you. Include your fiancé in the wedding planning. Matt was absolutely
amazing with this and we would spend an hour or two every evening going over a
few more wedding things, and making sure we were both happy. He even joined the
girls for our DIY craft night just before the wedding! It brought us so much
closer together and makes you learn so much more about your husband-to-be.
Delegate. As mentioned, I am a control-freak, but if I had done
everything myself, I would have hated my wedding day. I had a great team of
bridesmaids, as well as my parents, helping me out every step of the way, and
Matt had his responsibilities too. We were planning the wedding from Johannesburg, so them being in Durban made the planning process a lot more
bearable! It also made my loved ones feel included in this special time.
On your wedding day, forget about all the hard work and planning
that you have put into the day and just enjoy it. Who cares if the cake is on
the wrong table, or the wrong flower arrangement is on the wrong table? No one
else has noticed, so neither should you. Just enjoy it. And use your
bridesmaids. They are honoured to be by your side on your special day and as
much as they want to party with you, they are there to find your missing
bouquet for the bouquet toss, and lift your dress when you need the loo.
did you decide on the colour or theme of your wedding?
When we decided to get married, we knew we wanted something
small, set in a pretty garden, and then go into the evening from there. We then
found our beautiful venue, Eagle Wind Manor, and took inspiration from there to
finalise our ideas for theme and colour. We wanted things to be very rustic and
natural, with as little sparkle as possible. In terms of colour, I was inspired
by the King Protea. My engagement ring is the Browns Protea ring, and the very
day before we got engaged Matt had bought me a beautiful bouquet of Proteas and
fynbos. It just seemed like it was a perfect fit and I just loved the colours
and how rustic they were. From there we finalised the colour palettes and a
Protea design, and left the rest to my very capable and talented Maid of
Honour, Filipa of Ruby + Swallow.
involved was your husband or family in the wedding planning?
Matt was involved in every step of the way – he may have coined
the term, ‘Groomzilla’. He was more of a girl when it came to some things than
I was! It was great though, because it showed just how important this day was
to him too. My family was also very involved, thankfully! My mom and dad
handmade important elements of the décor, searched the best cake (my dad loved
that part) and sorted out my dress while I was still in Johannesburg. My older sisters were on point,
providing me with checklists of what needed to be done, organising amazing
pamper-parties and even doing the bridal party hair on the day!
would you change about your wedding day if you could?
I wish we had more people with video cameras there! We didn’t
really want a videographer but because our wedding was, in fact, an
engagement-party-turned-wedding, the bridal party entered the ceremony
flash-mob style to ‘Forever’ by Chris Brown, and I wish more people had caught
that on camera for years of laughs to come!
there any elements of your wedding that you did yourself?
99% of our wedding was done ourselves! DIY is not only an
amazing money-saver, but I am an avid pinner on Pinterest and just love DIY, so
it would have just killed me to have all that inspiration and not use it. So
pretty much everything, from bunting, flower arrangements, boutonnières and
bouquets, to wedding favours, the cake and even our music with the help of our MOH's plus one, Richard, who took us through the ceremony and the crucial elements of the reception!
anything unexpected or extra special happen on your wedding day that surprised
you and your husband? (Or just you!)
Well, I think our guests were more surprised than we were,
actually! As mentioned, we had invited everyone under the pretence that they
were attending our engagement party. It wasn’t until the bridal party
flash-mobbed their way down the aisle that they realised that they were, in
fact, attending a wedding.
And then Matt had sneakily arranged a Ferrari as his getaway car
from the wedding. We had never even thought of that as we were having the
ceremony, reception and spending the night at our venue, but Matt is a car
fanatic (he would marry Jeremy Clarkson over me) and I must say, the red looked
gorgeous next to my white dress!
What was your wedding song?
Music is so important to
both Matt and I, and I think we probably spent more time working on our
playlist than our guest list! That is probably why we decided on our wedding
playlist as our wedding favour. Two songs stand out for me from our special
day, that you could call our wedding songs:
Bittersweet Symphony – The
Verve: I walked down the aisle to this song. I have loved this song forever and
every time we heard this song together, we would look at each other with that
little look as we both knew that one day I would be walking towards Matt to
(I’ve had) The Time of My
Life – Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes: This was our first dance song. I love
Dirty Dancing (which girl doesn’t?) and I remember the day we first watched
this movie together in his little flat while we were still studying. I said
that one day the man I marry will dance with me to this song. And there we were!
And, to make it extra special, Matt and I choreographed the first few minutes
of the song, copying the actual dance from the movie! It was a lot of hard
work, but when he walked across the dance floor calling me with this index
finger, I fell in love with him all over again! And we also kept this as our
own little surprise, giving those who knew about the wedding (our families and
bridal party) their own little surprise!
was the flavour of your cake?
We decided on red velvet, with a cream cheese icing.
you go on Honeymoon? And if so, where did you go?
Matthew and I will be in the UK next year, so we have decided to
celebrate our honeymoon and our one year paper anniversary with some tickets to
a European tour – we can’t wait!
and my super-talented MOH, Filipa de Oliveira
bunting was made by my mom. All wooden décor – flower boxes, chalkboards etc. were done by my dad. Flower arrangements by myself and my sister, Bernadette. Candles and candle holders by myself and my sister, Bernadette.
of Ruby + Swallow
(including bridesmaids dresses):
wedding dress was made, in a week (amazing) by the very talented Shona
Goldstone of Shona’s Wedding Collection.
were purchased from YDE and my sisters outfits were made by my mom.
hair was done by my sister, Tina.
purchased all the flowers at the Boeremark in Pretoria and drove them down to
Durban. My sister, Bernadette and I, did all the arrangements, and I made the
bouquets and boutonnières.
catering was supplied by Eagle Wind Manor, by the very talented Jenny Ambler.
cake was made by my mom’s friend and iced by Matt’s mom, Rosemary.
Labels: danielleandmatthew, Eagle Wind Manor, engagement party, James Gibbs, realweddings, surprise wedding