Byron & Adél’s Picnic Wedding

Having a picnic is the perfect alternative to a luncheon or breakfast, especially for a day wedding! Guests can nibble at their leisure and relax under the trees. That is exactly the kind of laid-back affair Byron and Adél had in mind for their wedding day. The couple made their way from the UK to celebrate their wedding in the Natal Midlands, at the legendary Granny Mouse Country House. Adél says she felt like a princess in her romantic lace wedding dress, and we think she looked like one too. It kind of reminds me of Ivanka Trump’s Vera Wang wedding dress, which is one of my all-time favourites! Jacki Bruniquel was there to snap away at all those special moments.

Tell us your love story …

(This was written by Byron for the wedding website)“They met in the least likely of places, on an overcrowded square in Pretoria surrounded on almost every side by bars and on one side by a Spur. It is creatively called ‘The Square’, and the particular bar in question was the accurately named Chilies.To say it was love at first sight would be a stretch, although it was clear to both of them at the time (they would later find out while recounting the story to various friends and family) that they both felt something very special the first time they saw each other that night. The rest of that night was reasonably standard, the girl playing coy, the plucky boy trying various methods of approach, until eventually … a number and a ‘call me’.Needless to say he did, at first he tried to play it cool but it didn’t come naturally so they went for the old favorite, dinner-and-a-movie. Being ignorant of her many wonderful qualities he was quite taken aback when she ordered a burger with chips and onion rings and almost finished an entire bottle of Spur’s (yes the same one at above-mentioned square) famous white sauce … and a milkshake (large). She on the other hand was taken aback when he proceeded to walk home because his transport at the time had laces. She blushed and he postured but somehow they each managed to really see the other, and liked what they saw. They were obviously very different people, but the one thing they had (and still have) very much in common was the love they felt for each other. That evening turned into a weekend that turned into a week that led into months and eventually years. Together they grew and learned and their relationship evolved until neither could imagine a life without the other, nor would they like to.That’s when he asked her, and she said yes.”

What were the highlights of your wedding day?

My highlight was the nervous excitement just before entering the chapel. I could hear the jazz band playing and could see some of the guests through the windows. It was at that moment that everything suddenly became very real. This day that we had planned and waited for for months was finally here.

Any advice for brides-to-be?

You will hear this over and over again so believe it … the day really flies by quickly so live every second to its fullest. For this reason I would also say get the best photographer you can afford. Jacki took such amazing photos of real moments that allow me to almost re-live the day just by looking through them.

Did anything unexpected happen?

Five members of my family who I was not expecting showed up! Okay, so I found out three days before but they were originally planning just to arrive without telling me. It was a mad rush to rearrange tables and find favours for them etc., and our co-ordinator Kate did a good job keeping it all together. I’m still glad they came though, despite the mad panic.

Where did you get most of your ideas and inspiration from?

I had a picture of a beautiful wooden table neatly set with vintage crockery under a tree from which birdcages were hung – I absolutely loved it and this formed the base of all my future plans. I then spent hours browsing blog after blog and bought numerous wedding magazines (my guilty pleasure). So I got ideas from all over. I also built up a huge list of decor suppliers in the UK (we were really spoiled for choice) whose websites I checked regularly to see what they had on sale! As I found things I liked (and were on sale) these items slowly got added to the theme. Luckily I found a lot of bird related items to go along with my birdcages.

Did your wedding preparations include any DIY projects?

I love doing creative DIY projects and made quite a few things for the wedding. These included baking cookies for the after-ceremony drinks, Byron’s boutonnière, the flower girl’s and bridesmaid’s wrist corsages, our table numbers and seating plans, I designed the ceremony programme (with the help of one of my good friends) and made our invitations (with Byron’s help). If it was up to me I would have made the cake as well, but in the end I decided it would be too stressful so just designed it instead.My mother made all the napkins for us which we embroidered with each guest’s name to serve as a favour and help guests find their seats.

What was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome while organising your dream wedding?

Being on a different continent! We moved to London shortly after getting engaged so had to do all our planning via email. It was a bit frustrating at times, particularly when suppliers do not respond, but we got there in the end.