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Happy Monday everyone, how are you all? I hope you all had a great weekend? Ours was pretty chilled, we caught up with friends and family and took it easy. Mainly because building work starts today on our new extension, the scaffolding is going up as we speak, so it’s going to be a very busy and noisy few weeks ahead. So on with today’s wedding and I am taking you off to Sweden for this 70’s inspired festival style wedding. Due to a family illness the whole wedding was planned in just over a month. All of Chanelle and Michael’s family and friends pitched in, from the cooking to the decor, to the tent, to the flowers, everyone helped pull the wedding together in super fast time. The result is this super laid back day, filled with chilled vibes and the most adorable couple. Big thanks to Snowflake Photo for the lovely images.
Chanelle and Michael were married on 26th June 2021 in a Swedish forest. ‘I am from South Africa, my partner is from Australia, but my parents and sister live in Sweden, so we decided to have it there! My father was diagnosed with stage four colon cancer five years ago and about four months ago, we found out that cancer had spread to his brain. I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to have my dad walk me down the isle, so we decided to have a wedding ceremony in the Swedish forest inspired by the 70s – WEDSTOCK – all about music, community and love. We had around 25 guests. My sister owns Nordic Stretch tents, a company that specialises in creating unique and memorable events, so she got things off the ground pretty quickly. We arrived in Sweden unexpectedly after the news of my father’s health and planned things pretty quickly – probably in a month or so! Not giving yourself much time to plan helps you make quick decisions which was handy. My sister sourced sustainable cutlery and crockery and a gorgeous cake from local businesses – so it was a wonderful collaboration from a business perspective. We grateful for our wonderful photographer who captured the spirit of the day BEAUTIFULLY! Our friends and family are in awe of the photos and were all jealous they couldn’t be there!’
How they met
Michael and I met almost 5 years ago on Tinder! Our first date was spent drinking beer at a local pub for about 8 hours. I used to cringe when people said, “love at first sight”, but I now understand that this is possible. On the day I met Mike I knew I would marry him. We spent six months apart shortly after we met as Mike had a trip planned in Africa, but when he got back, we picked up where we left off.
It was totally unexpected! We were visiting my mom and dad in Sweden, in our room catching our breath after a run (I love that on the day he proposed we went for a run -because we never run!) He started telling me a story about his old work friend, which was a bit odd, but it somehow managed to get to him asking me to marry him. He dropped to his knee on the mattress which made him a bit unsteady, and I stood afore him confused and shocked – totally unexpected. Of course, I said yes.
How did you allocate your budget?
I am grateful to say that it was a very cost-effective wedding. My sister’s in-laws let us use their torp as the wedding venue, my sister covered the décor and tents and most of the day was sponsored by Nordic Stretch Tents and their connections. The only thing we paid for was booze, food and the cake. We all chipped into DIY which saved costs too. Shout out to Light My Fire for the crockery and cutlery.
How did you choose your photographer?
My sister found Cristell who exceeded our expectations. Not only did she produce gorgeous photos that we will Cherish forever but she brought an energy to the wedding that we were so grateful to have. Both Cristell and her daughter came to the wedding and were just wonderful humans to be around. Helpful, friendly and kind.
I wore a white jumpsuit that I bought online for $150 from ASOS! I ordered it online when I got to Sweden, and it arrived a few days before the wedding – beautiful quality and it fit like a dream! The shoes were just from a shop in the mall and my jewellery was from H&M.
The suit and bridesmaids
My partner got his suit from H&M! We visited a few fancy suit stores, but the H&M suit fitted the best AND happened to have the 70s vibe we were looking for. I didn’t have bridesmaids, but most guests had a 70s vibe.
Theme or colour scheme
YES! 70s – neutral, browns, oranges and white.
Sunflowers, pampas and dried flowers
Earthy decorations with neutral colours. Our glamping tent had a gold disco ball which was cool!
This was a really special part of the day. My dad, who is a fantastic cook prepared boerewors, a South African sausage that is like no other sausage you have ever tasted! He made the sausage from scratch and BBQ’d it for us. The South African sausage was served in rolls with South African side salads – like chaka-laka! We arranged picnic baskets for guests for lunch.
The wedding cake was out of this world! It looked amazing (too good to eat). It had a vanilla sponge with butterscotch cream in the centre and pink icing.
We had a live band (school kids from the school where my mother works) and a DJ (who was also from South Africa)
We did pretty much everything ourselves! This made it special as we all chipped in to make the day wonderful. My sister-in-law made a gin bar, my sister’s mother in law made bread, my dad made the food and my sister and friends did all the set up and décor. I think the most special item for me was my bouquet. My mom made a bouquet from a tambourine and dried flowers. It’s very special to me.
One of my best and oldest friends married us. That was pretty special. I’ve known him since I was born. My mom and dad walking me down the aisle was VERY special, and I suppose (as cliched as it may be) standing in front of the man I am lucky enough to spend the rest of my life with was a real highlight. Drinking in the hot tub and sauna was fun too!
Advice for other couples
Keep it simple! Spending too much time or money on your wedding may create more stress than joy! Find ways to make it special without spending lots of money (there are SO many ways to do this!) Remember, that your wedding is about YOU and no one else.
I was nervous!! I am a performer so I didn’t think I would feel nervous, but I was.
Christell is a wedding photographer, based in Sweden but available world wide. Her passion in photography is to capsule nature and peoples love for each other combined in her stories. Her focus is candid and emotive portraits in a more moody style.
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