When someone loves what they do, it clearly reflects in their work. Renee Frouws from The Famous Frouws is sharing one of her lovely weddings with us today. With a combination of mountains and the ocean, incredible images will be created. Renee captured the wedding of Stuart and Claire’s wedding at Blue Horizon Estate in the Western Cape. We love sharing original and stunning work and it is such an honor to have Renee as a Wedding Friend. The stationery was done by Red Dove Designs and Claire’s stunning dress was designed by Olivelli. Enjoy this wedding with us.
I Propose | Elaborate on how the two of you met or on how the proposal went down.
I moved to Johannesburg from Cape Town in May 2008 for a job opportunity, little did I know I would meet my future husband. 2 months after moving, I moved from my best friend and her husband’s house into my own little place. My friends also moved to a new place and that next weekend they had a housewarming. I went to the housewarming and little did I know that Cameron had asked his colleague, Stuart, to come to the housewarming and also said “there is a nice Cape Town chick I want you to meet”. It seemed I was the only one who didn’t know Stuart would be there. We spoke all night and the rest is history!
Bride & Prejudice | Express some memorable experiences you had during the planning.
Since meeting Stuart and moving to Johannesburg, we have done a lot of local traveling and fun things together, but I think the most memorable experience was the day he proposed. I’m very much a family person and go back to Cape Town at least 4 times a year. I went down for Easter 2013 and every Easter we do the Easter Egg Hunt on Easter Sunday and its such an amazing day to see the smile on the kids faces, and the adults for that matter.
So after the egg hunt, my dad asked everyone to grab their eggs for a photo and stand around me. I was a little irritated, I’m not going to lie, my dad is like a tourist with his camera, so I let out a little sigh and sat down with my egg. Stuart then grabbed my little egg and said “no, rather take this one”. I didn’t show much interest and just took the egg he gave me and posed for the photo.
My dad then gave out instructions for everyone to open their eggs, so we opened the foil. He then instructed everyone to take a bit out of their eggs, which we did and on doing that I felt a rattle in my hollow egg. I looked down in it and inside was the most amazing diamond ring! I couldn’t believe it! I was speechless and just put my head in to my legs and started crying. Before I knew it, Stuart was on one knee next to me and said “you know I love you, please will you marry me”. Of course I said yes! But what was so special was that he proposed in front of my family (brothers and sisters, nephews and niece, parents etc) and not one of them had a clue this was going to happen, besides my dad, as Stuart had asked his permission for my hand in marriage.
My Fair Wedding | Describe an event that you feel was unique or even funny.
If anyone has ever grown up in Cape Town, Fish Hoek or Simon’s Town for that matter, you would know how the wind can howl.
So the one thing that worried me the most was if the wind was going to blow, as our venue was right on top of Red Hill Mountain over looking False Bay and no protection from the wind.
The day before the wedding, it was raining as it does in Cape Town, but then I woke up on the day of my wedding and all I could say was “wow”. There wasn’t a breath of wind, it was 24 degrees Celsius, so it wasn’t too hot and I just knew that the Gods were watching over me that day.
I got ready in the most beautiful old house in Simon’s Town and I was just so calm, I was scaring myself. I loved every bit of the getting ready part, from the champers and orange juice, the makeup, the hair, photographs and just spending some quality time with my girls and the Mothers. When the 1956 Bentley arrived to pick up myself and my father and take us to the venue, that was emotional as my father started crying. It was exactly then when all the excitement kicked in!
Getting to the venue felt like the longest drive ever. It was the most beautiful set up ever. Everyone seated down the lawn, overlooking the ocean, stunning flowers, beautiful decor and my gorgeous fiance waiting for me at the end of the aisle. Every single thing went off without a hitch. The day was amazing, the night was amazing, the guests, music and the atmosphere was just perfect. The weather played along perfectly, especially for our couples photo shoot. It was everything I had thought it would be and more. It was the best day of our lives. I am proud to say that we organized (with help of course) a Cape Town wedding from Johannesburg and we did it well.
Don’t Tell The Bride | Reveal something that happened behind the scenes.
Unfortunately our friends who introduced myself and Stuart, Susan and Cameron, had to cancel two days before as their 2 week old baby was rushed to hospital with a viral infection. Susan who is my best friend, was my Matron of Honour and Cameron was one of Stuart’s Best men. Their son, Mathew, who is also our Godson, would have been our ring bearer.
When she called to tell me, it felt as if my world came crashing down on me. How could my best friend of 11 years not be able to attend our wedding. What would I do without her there. She came to every dress fitting, was there for every phone call, every idea,what was I going to do. Susan was just as emotional, but she was doing the best thing and this was out of anyone’s control. I got ready at her Aunties house as Susan was going to stay there, so we Skyped the whole day when I was getting ready, right up until me putting my dress on.
I was under the impression that one of my Bridesmaids would read Susan’s speech at the wedding in her absence as I had requested, but when it came to the speeches and came to “Susan’s speech”, our MC made an announcement and explained the situation and why they could not attend and then he added that they have done something special for me, he then brought over his iPad and I immediately knew it would be Susan!
I was right! It was Susan and she had prerecorded her speech. I just started crying! The bridal table were the only people who could see the screen, but they put the microphone against the iPad so the whole reception could hear her speech. It was truly special, something I will never forget!
No More Wedding Woes | Share your wedding advice for future brides.
First bit of advice: Enjoy every bit of the planning process and don’t let it stress you. The time goes by so quickly, so just take it all in. Also try add some personal touches, we provided a lot of our own decor which made it more special. If possible, see if the venue has a wedding planner in their wedding package. See what the venue has to offer. A lot of venues have hidden costs like chair hire, no decor etc. This is where the costs start adding up.
Draw up a budget and try stick to it.
People always say that the most important things are: The Photographer, the food, the DJ and of course, the dress. This is true. Do not skimp on these things. Especially the Photographer, you want those memories to last forever.
When it comes to the wedding dress, don’t just give up and accept any dress, I went to plenty of boutiques, you will find the dress and you will get that feeling everyone talks about. It might just mean that you need to go over your budget a teeny bit, but hey, its your day!
Last bit of advice, stay sober. You have 364 other days out of the year to get drunk, not this day. Sparkling water in between your drinks and just take it easy (doesn’t mean you can’t drink, just drink smart). I have seen drunk brides (and grooms) and it looks tacky.
Other then that, enjoy your day!