Rhys & Kelly’s Durban Beach Wedding

Today we travel east to celebrate the laid-back wedding of Rhys and Kelly amongst the waves of Durban’s shores. Planning their big day all the way from London proved to be challenging, but this daring couple couldn’t be more satisfied with the final result.We fell in love with their bohemian and casual sense of style and how it seems to perfectly complement their personalities.
Looking like a sea goddess, Kelly fashioned a beautiful flower wreath that complemented her light and long trailing dress, with beautiful bodice detail. The guys were just as creatively styled in charming bow ties, snazzy shoes and cool shades. We can only image how much funHP Photography had capturing the day.

Their story.

We met in February 2008. Rhys was visiting from London on a holiday and a friend brought him along to a birthday party. We knew straight away it was not the usual holiday fling but we lived 8 000 miles apart so did not know what to do. We kept in touch for two years, seeing each other every holiday that we could. I moved to London straight after I finished studying and we got together straight away!We got engaged on an autumn day in October 2011 sitting on a beautiful wooden bench in Central Park, New York. We knew right from the beginning that we did not want a long engagement and decided to get married in May 2012 in South Africa.

What were the highlights of your wedding day?

We knew that living in London and planning a wedding in South Africa was going to be difficult but everything came together so easily. I remember at one point I looked around at everyone and everything and could not believe how it had all come together and was exactly what we wanted.
The whole day felt like a dream and every part of it was special but the ceremony on the beach was definitely the biggest highlight. Having all our friends and family with us as we made such an important decision is something we will remember forever!

Any advice for brides-to-be?

If you find something that you love, stop looking. Less is more most of the time. Spend your money on your photographer, dress and food. You will never regret inviting someone to your wedding but you will regret not inviting someone, so embrace having a big family if you do.

Did anything unexpected happen?

The strap on my dress broke right after the ceremony when I was hugging all the guests. Luckily our friends live in the house right off the beach so they quickly popped home and got some needle and thread and then my sister-in-law, who was a bridesmaid, sewed it back on for me!

Any hints for other brides on how to keep your wedding budget friendly?

I picked up a lot of second-hand items (it helped that our wedding was slightly vintage) but everything added up quickly so where I could I bought stuff on ebay and after the wedding sold what I didn’t use. Also we made all our invites, seating plan, menus and thank you cards ourselves, which helped save some dosh. Be realistic and think carefully about what matters. As soon as you mention wedding, people want to rip you off so be careful, it’s easy to go over the top.

What song did you choose for your opening dance and why?

We chose You And Me by Penny and the Quarters. It’s a beautiful song that we heard in the movie Blue Valentine. We have so many songs together and choosing one was tough because we had too many but the words in this song are beautiful.

Any time saving or organising tips?

Use your moms as much as you can. Try not to take everything on yourself. I made to do lists every week and made sure I ticked each thing off the list by the end of the week. Give your fiance a list too :)

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

I searched on the net for ideas and looked through bridal magazines. I used Etsy and ebay to buy most of my decor etc.Pinterest was also very helpful.

How does your wedding reflect your personalities?

All of our friends said our wedding was very ‘us’ so I guess it did reflect our personalities. We are both very chilled and knew from the beginning that we did not want the usual, typical wedding. We just wanted to enjoy the day and for everyone to have fun so we thought the less complicated we make it the better.

Did your wedding preparations include any DIY projects?

Yes. We made our save the dates, invites, menus, seating plan, table numbers, table holders, order of service and thank you cards. Basically each item on the table was put together by us.
 Rhys’s mom also made our cake, which was beautiful. The cake had three layers and was covered in beautiful delicate lace made out of icing, decorated with blush-coloured antique sugar icing roses.