I am a big fan of Portugal and I've been travelling a lot around the country. My partner is Portuguese and like Dominique, born in South Africa so I felt that Dominique finding us was like it was meant to be! Dominique chose to wear one of my favourite dresses. The perfect, relaxed Kay dress. A new version of the Kay dress is available to try on at our showroom and we'll be adding it to the website later this year together with the new collection.
Congratulations Dominique and Ian!
- Miina -
My Perfect Day….
THE DRESS AND THE LOOK
A year or two before our wedding, when we lived in Brixton I’d found Indiebride and fell in love with a short mod-style dress. Once we were engaged and I had an idea of the bohemian-style dress I wanted, I went back to the website and immediately knew I needed an appointment.
Along with my mum (who’d flown out from SA), my sister-in-law and bridesmaid, we went to our first dress appointment and I was so happy to see the cosy and relaxed setting where we had the room (and Miina) to ourselves. The girls piled up dress after dress for me to try and funnily enough I ultimately went with the first one I tried on – The Kay Dress (unavailable online at the moment but available to try on at the showroom)! I always knew that I wanted something comfortable, flattering and delicate. Lace and silk were big musts. The vintage-boho style at Indiebride suited my tastes and Miina’s one-on-one guidance was so helpful. I didn’t feel pressurised at all and loved that my mum helped me in and out of the dresses instead of a panicky sales-assistant.
The fact that the brand is sustainable and hand-made to order meant so much to me as I’m not a cookie-cutter body type and I didn’t want an off the rack dress. Miina altered the style to my requirements and the follow up appointments meant that she was able to nip and tuck to every little request I had. In the end I was blown away with how much I loved the fit of the dress, how delicate and special it looked and how utterly beautiful I felt all day.
My fabulous makeup artist also did my hair, Mary was recommended by my venue and happened to know the photographers well. I was after a natural sun-kissed look with hair that would complement the flower crown and stay off my face whilst still looking soft and natural. I went for a trial a few days before the wedding so that I was confident we were on the same page.
I wore very few accessories as the dress itself was such a simple and delicate masterpiece. My shoes were a special purchase from French designer Sezane – champagne coloured sandals with a small heel allowing me to feel glam and dance the night away.
My two gorgeous bridesmaids wore long wrap dresses in ‘vintage rose’ from Asos, both had them adapted to suit their body type and I insisted on comfortable shoes so they wore flat, gold sandals.
THE GROOM'S OUTFIT
Ian chose a Paul Smith suit in a popping blue. Again, it was the first suit he tried on and it was perfect, paired with a white limited-edition Fred Perry x Miles Kane bowling shirt and no tie, he tied it all up with brown suede shoes from Dune. The groomsmen wore the same Fred Perry shirt with blue trousers and brown shoes.
Ian and I had a rollercoaster time finding a venue but when I stumbled upon Quinta de Sant’Ana near Lisbon, Portugal, I knew instantly that I’d found our dream destination. I’m South African and Ian is English so we knew from the start that we wanted a European venue that could be a ‘destination wedding’ for our friends and family who were coming from far and wide. I am a wine fanatic and Ian is an executive chef so the food & wine offering was also paramount.
QSA is a family-run working wine estate which offered the most picturesque venue consisting of rolling vineyards, deep-ochre coloured buildings and fabulous flora. The owner, Ann, was very hands-on and her team of amazing event planners focused my ideas and made every wish our reality. The flow of the venue meant that each stage of the wedding moved through the historical buildings from the ceremony in the vineyard to cocktails and canapes in the courtyard with tastings in the ancient wine cellar, then on to dinner, cake cutting under festoon lights and dancing.
I was after a boho feel for the day with a relaxed but well put-together vibe that made the most of the stunning setting. The venue took care of the décor and adorned the two long dinner tables with loads of candles and flowers, allowing for the rustic wooden tables to show off their beauty too. For our favours we chose mini ‘hangover kits’ that I ordered on Etsy which really represented the playfulness of our relationship and the party we were hoping everyone would have.
The ceremony was in the vineyard and we had simple wooden benches and wine barrels adorned with flowers as well as parasols for the ladies
The ceremony, table flowers, bouquets and flower crowns were all done for me by the venue using our chosen colour palate of pastels and sage with local, seasonal flora. Succulents and local olive vines were very present, and I was blown away by the flower arch that played backdrop to our ceremony. All stationary was designed and printed by my Dad in South Africa with imagery that played on the vineyard feel printed on a recycled brown card.
FOOD AND CAKE
The food was incredible, we had flown to Portugal six months before the wedding to see the venue and have a tasting. I walked away from that on cloud nine after tasting the gorgeous food and wines. The day started with canapes and a BBQ of local sausages; we then went on to our beautiful four course meal of local produce followed by a cheese table, cake and midnight snacks of prego rolls and pasteis de nata.
The naked cake we chose was an orange sponge with a mango mousseline and fresh berries, it was simply decorated with fresh flowers and a topper that I’d had specially made by Tailor Made Toppers. Ian is a Liverpool FC fan so I had a special figurine made of him in a Liverpool jersey and me in my dress – it was so beautifully designed with all exact details included and was a complete surprise for him!
Our DJ (DJ Bully) was recommended by the venue, and he was incredible. We are both huge music fans so choosing key songs for the day was a big thing for us – our first dance was to ‘Absolute Beginners’ by David Bowie and I walked down the aisle to a Kasabian Song called ‘Put Your Life On It’. We chose a myriad of the usual cheese and classics for the party and the photos of everyone singing jubilantly to Bohemian Rhapsody are testament to the pure happiness throughout the day.
Our photographers from Azhana Studio Portugal were simply wonderful. A husband and wife pair, we had a skype call before committing and of course looked at their blog to get an idea of their style. We then met them six months prior the wedding and clicked immediately. They were kind, unassuming and captured every moment without once being in the way. Fabio and Maria took our lead and made us feel so at ease, we are a relaxed couple who hate posing and laugh A LOT and they really captured that in their images.
- Dominique -