Debbie and Gavin’s Wedding {Cape Coral Dream}

by Monique on May 16, 2012 · 3 comments

It’s a small world. Debbie and Gavin are a perfect case in point – they met in a London pub, got engaged while snorkelling in Australia, married in Cape Town and now these adventurous newly-weds are living in Dubai! Debbie also went to the same junior school as I did, before she moved to another school. We met up again a few years back and have stayed in touch via Facebook. Like I said, small world! 

Today I’m delighted to feature her beautiful wedding and I’m just going to admit that I’m absolutely crazy about the colour scheme! The coral bridesmaid’s dresses look amazing contrasted by the blue sea and white sand of  Llandudno beach. I want one! Oh and Debbie’s ivory lace wedding dress with lace overlay … sensational! 

If you love the idea of a traditional wedding with vintage charm and a fun beach wedding all rolled into one, you’re going to love this… 

{How We Met}

It was the 16th December 2008 in the Walkabout Bar in Cardiff. South Africa had just narrowly beat Wales in Rugby Test Match at the Millennium Stadium. Gavin and I had both gone through to Cardiff from London with respective sets of friends to watch the game. Admittedly this is not the place I thought I would meet my future spouse, it certainly caught us both by surprise!

Gavin smiled at me from across the bar. His whole face lit and he had these gorgeous dimples. I thought, ‘Surely he can’t be smiling at me’ and looked over both shoulders to see who the lucky lady was behind me….there was no one behind me. I realised he was smiling at me (blush) – I returned the smile and a few moments later he came over and said, “Hi.”

We were chatting for sometime. I took the SA supporter’s scarf  he had around his neck and wore it for the rest of the evening. I figured he would make an excuse to get his scarf back if he wanted it. We shared a few drinks, lots of laughs, a bit of a dance and a goodnight kiss before I was whisked away onto the last train with my friends back to central London. I wasn’t sure what just happened, except that I was on my way home with a new Springbok scarf and a warm fuzzy feeling inside me.

To my delight he sent me a text message while I was on the train heading home. He told me that it was great to meet me and he really needed to meet up in London to ‘get his scarf back’. We spoke a few times on the phone that week, and met up for drinks that Friday in London. And the rest, as they say is history!

{The Proposal} 

We were in Australia on holiday in October 2010. Gav suggested a four night cruise from Cairns to Townsville. On the third day of the cruise we moored on Pelorus Island and had the day to swim, snorkel, dive or just laze about on the beach while the staff set up a big Aussie style BBQ. We decided to snorkel.

I was taking underwater photos when Gavin swam off towards the rocks and out of view of the beach and the rest of our group. He called me over to have a look at the crabs. I was dumbfounded and couldn’t understand what his fascination with the crabs when there was so much sea life under the water. I swam over to ‘humour’ him really.

The next thing I knew we were bobbing in the sea in each others arms and a ring box appeared out from the water! He asked me to marry him, right there in the sea in what has since been dubbed as ‘crab cove!’It was an amazing proposal, and in the sea which is my favourite place to be – he could not have got it more right.

We spent the rest of the day drinking champagne on the sand and letting it all start to sink in. We were floating on the Barrier Reef where we had a few hours to just enjoy the news to ourselves (and the rest of the tour). We eventually managed to get some signal once we were back on board that evening to call our parents and give them the good news.

{The Wedding Theme}

I would have loved a home wedding (if size would have allowed it) while part of me had always loved the idea of a beach wedding.

Fortunately we  fell in love with Suikerbossie in Hout Bay, with it’s spectacular views overlooking the sea and old world charm – it felt like home from home to us for our reception venue. We had photos taken on Llandudno beach so we got to enjoy the sense of a beach wedding and the view without having to worry about the practicalities of an outdoor wedding.

Coral, ivory and lace are the three things I chose for my decor to add to the old world charm to our wedding venue. Family and friends helped make our wedding day extra special with my Aunt and Gran making the wedding invitations, my Gran making my garter, an aunt making mice bride and groom cake-toppers for our Cheese Cake, a family friend made our wedding cake, a friend of mine did hair and make-up, I made the backdrop and bunting for our photo booth area and my Mom was my wedding planner while I was in London. She sorted everything and was amazing!

{Memorable Moments}

I will never forget the look on Gavin’s face when I entered the church – I couldn’t wait to get down the aisle and take his arm. He looks so brilliantly handsome! The whole day was just amazing! I remember feeling so happy and smiley and just loving every minute of it.

We  wanted our wedding day to be a celebration with the friends and family we love. We had already made the decision to spend the rest of our lives together, so this was the fun part. We wanted to have a party with our friends and we wanted a party to remember!

We made our entrance at the reception to ACDC’s’Thunderstruck,’ letting the intro build nicely before we came in! It was amazing! This set the tone for a great night of fun.We had dance lessons beforehand and opened the D Floor with Lionel Richie’s ‘Stuck on You. We did a lift during the dance and I will always remember that bit.

{Advice to Brides-To-Be}

I was given this key piece of advice beforehand and totally took this on board… The day goes by in a BLINK, you don’t want to look back and realise you spent the whole day stressed – its just not worth it!
Don’t sweat the small stuff, its not important. For example, my bouquet arrived with ugly green deadlock-looking things hanging from the front. I cut them off and forgot about it… no one knew! : )

{Venues} Brooke Chapel, Bishops and Suikerbossie, Hout Bay  
{Photographer} For Life Photography 
{Dressmaker} Debbie Henshilwood
{Hair and Make up} Cheryl Parker 

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kassi @ Truly Lovely May 16, 2012 at 8:58 pm

OH my goodness that cake is so fun! :) Love the pretty coral dresses and that Scrabble pic is too cute!!!


2 Just Bee May 23, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Wow i love her dress!! so stunning!!


3 Michelle February 5, 2013 at 11:47 pm

where did you source your coral bridesmaid dresses?


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