White beaches, palm trees and silver waters… what a beautiful setting for the ceremony of a lifetime. Kelly and Anthony got married in the gorgeous Seychelles during an intimate ceremony. Joanne Markland captured all the special moments.

About the bride:

“I moved to Mahé in September 2011. We had been planning the wedding in Seychelles for about a year (Anthony has been living here for about a year already). I was blessed enough to find a job here just in time as a lecturer at the University of Seychelles in the Faculty of Science. Marriage has always been important to me. I have always known that the right guy would come along when the time was right (and when I was in the right place in my life and he was in the right place in his). So I got on with my studies and my career – I waited a long time for my man…”

About the groom:

“He has worked hard for the last ten years to build up his flying career. He has funded the training himself and worked full time to be able to afford to get his license. His friends and family have been very supportive and that encouraged him, as there were definitely times he thought he would never get there.”

How did you meet?

“I tried throwing myself at him – well as much as someone with not so much guy experience can. Apparently he had to be a mind reader to see the signs. A pilot friend introduced us at a pub while I was in Cape Town for work. It went downhill from there… We did a lot of long distance and travelling (CPT – JHB – Angola – Seychelles) and we learnt so much about each other because we had to talk on Skype (the alternative was just staring at each other – only so much of that you can do) and we also had to work at making our relationship strong as there were lots of challenges with being apart so much.”

How long were you together before the wedding proposal?

“About three years.”

Tell us about the proposal

“We were in Thailand – everyone was hounding us about getting married and I was wondering if he was going to pop the question. He was so edgy on holiday (probably trying to figure out when and where) and I was even edgier because I was wondering if it was going to happen and when and what I should wear to every outing etc. Towards the end of the holiday I started relaxing because I figured if it hadn’t happened by now then he had something else planned for another time. We went out for a romantic beach dinner on our last night and he distracted me after with a walk on the beach and told me to take some photos of the place at night – I turned around after taking some photos to see him pointing at a bottle in the water and I picked it up and there was a message asking me to marry him. He did so well throwing me off the scent that I really wasn’t thinking that “this was it”… then he whipped out the ring! It was perfect! Different but me. Our good friend babysat the ring the whole holiday – I think she was so scared that something would happen to it before the big event!

How far in advance did you choose to have your wedding after the proposal?

“He proposed in April (2010) and we decided ‘next year some time’ and ‘how about 11-11-11?’. It has been a significant number in both our lives – we are both born on the 11th, the first house we stayed in together was 11, most of my family was born on the 11th and there have been many more 11’s throughout our lives.”

How did you go about the wedding planning process? Did you do it yourself? How long was the planning process? How did you find it?

We found a venue in Cape Town (Cascade Manor) and booked it and then decided to get married in Seychelles as Ant was working there. I met some people here when I was visiting him and then I got a job just in time for the wedding. It was quite hard to plan a wedding from SA and the language and culture barrier also made for some interesting challenges. I am also a little too relaxed and Ant likes things planned and organised so I think it was quite hard for us to be patient with each other. He helped a lot by checking things out in the beginning and then I communicated via email with the venue.  Flowers were a mission as roses and frangipani’s were all people wanted me to have and I wanted something different. Also we had to check what was in season and what I could get my hands on. We also had 30 people visiting from SA so we had to plan accommodation and cars etc so it was really really stressful! Also, there was some confusion as to what we wanted for the ceremony (I wanted a religious ceremony and the deacon had no idea what wedding I was referring to) I found this out the week of the wedding and we only sorted this out on the day. Luckily Ant new some people who knew some people…

Did you have a hen party / kitchen tea / stag night / bachelor / bachelorette party? If so, what did you do and what did you enjoy most about it?
My sister organised a surprise party at the house with one of my very good friends – she was visiting from NZ and she had her wedding there so no-one was able to give her a party. Next thing I know we are both sitting there dressed up in toilet paper wedding dresses that we had to make. I really enjoyed sharing the “pain” with Lara! My sister was also great and kept us sober on the sly. The “love ferns” were so much fun. My favourite part was the underwear I got as gifts!

Wedding Details (the whole story…from start to finish)
I arrived to a new job in September and the sorting of the final details – things are very chilled here and no one is in a hurry. We had the Deacon drama and I was in tears because I wanted a religious ceremony and there was only going to be a civil ceremony – Ant eventually got the deacon and the civil minister guy there at the same time and they married us together.  The build up to the wedding was chaos as there were 30 people flying in from South Africa. Ant had lots to organise with accommodation and cars and I had lots of questions and I was also worried that people were flying all the way here and it would just rain for a week (rainy season here).  I made little maps for people and we tried the wedding food and did all the last minute stuff.  We were both still working and we wanted to spend as much time as we could with everyone so we were exhausted!

On the day I had my dress on and I sat on a bench in the hotel room – when I stood up my mom freaked out – there was a black mark across my dress from the black polish they had used in on the wooden bench in the room. My mom saved the day with wet-wipes. Apparently baby powder also works – this from Ant (after the ceremony) from all the Style Network I make him watch. Claire tracked down the flowers and put together a bouquet for me – she also sorted all the lanterns and the bottles that hung from the trees and I had the best wedding photographer – one thing less to stress about.  The ceremony went well and It was such an amazing day. The food was awesome – the heat was horrendous – but that is part of being on a tropical island! And there was no rain – it rained in the morning and was perfect for the ceremony.

Tips and / or advice for future bridal couples?
Magic tape for the girls if you can’t wear a bra – worked like a charm and the baby powder and wet-wipes just incase.

What was the most memorable part of your wedding day?
I loved my dress (also the mark on my wedding dress will be memorable) and my awesome husband who was really supportive at the last minute when all the chaos hit.

Did you go on honeymoon? If so, where? And, why there?
Yip –  leave was a bit of an issue having started a new job etc. So we took a couple of days and went to an Island close by (Silhouette Island) with only one resort on it and a very small population. Just what we needed – to relax and be spoilt all alone after a hectic (but fun) week . It was great because there was no rushing to see as much as we could – as we would have felt we had to in a foreign country.

Number of guests:
40

Service Partners:

Venue: Mahé, Seychelles
Wedding coordinator: Claire Woods
Photographer: Joanne Markland
Suits: Hilton Weiner
Dresses: Robyn Roberts
Flowers: Claire Woods
Cake: Lounge 8
Catering: Lounge 8

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