Beach Meets Forest Wedding at Coral Divers In SA Wedding: Johan & Nadia

Today’s beautiful beach inspired wedding mixes the love for the ocean with an outdoorsy forest vibe.

Our gorge bride and groom first met at Coral Divers whilst learning to dive, love blossomed and 4 years later they held their relaxed beach nuptials upon the very same sands their story began…

Words by Nadia. Images by Tanya Strauss Photography.

The sea was the inspiration for our wedding! My husband and I have the most utmost respect and love for the ocean!

We are very outdoorsy people and wanted a forest / beach inspired wedding that was relaxed and more of a party – “festival of love” than a very sophisticated wedding.

As our bridesmaids are all so different, we eventually decided that each bridesmaid could wear whatever they wanted, as long as the colour was between sand and pink (range of champagne colours). I wanted them all to feel the way they wanted to.

My wonderful mother in law made cute bohemian woven “sandals” that that wrapped around our ankles. Who needs shoes on the beach :)

Johan wore a Pierre Cardin suit a personal favorite of mine must be the fly fishing hooks we used as boutonnieres for the groomsmen.

We married at Coral Divers, in Sodwana Bay, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa. This was actually very special to us because ee actually met at there in Sodwana Bay in 2013. We were both doing diving courses, Coral Divers is definitely one of the best diving schools worldwide, and I would highly recommend them!

We got engaged at a festival in Mozambique close to Sodwana and usually make the diving trip 3 or 4 times a year to Coral Divers!

I honestly do not know where to begin to describe the mind-blowing experience we had with Tanya Strauss Photography, as our wedding photographer. As you can all see, her photos are amazing! But brides to be, there is more to choosing your wedding photographer than the photos! Tanya Strauss Photography is the whole package.

From her prices to the professional and sophisticated manner she works with her clients and their guests on the day of the wedding, up until the super fast delivery of her product. (I have heard of brides and grooms waiting 2 years for their wedding pictures and I must say getting the photos while the wedding feeling is still there, was a big bonus!)

Having Tanya as our wedding photographer really gave me that confidence and calmness that every bride wishes for on their wedding day. I would without a doubt recommend Tanya Strauss Photography for every occasion regarding lifestyle photography.

The amount of research we did to find the perfect wedding photographer sure paid off! We could not have been more pleased with the service and product we received!

My wedding dress was by Marinda Wilmans –  the best part of the dress was that it was so comfortable! I loved the soft net that caught the wind on the beach and the different layers providing interesting textures and colours during the dances.

My husband made a bunch of light features to hang in the locations we needed high lighting (snacks table, bar & bridal table). We made most of the decor ourselves and one task I will never attempt again was the glass terrariums. We measured, cut and assembled them ourselves, although they did look lovely. The table numbers and cake stand my husband made himself.

Everything was so memorable about the day but for both of us, when seeing each other it felt like we could finally relax and everything was going to turn out perfect (and it did).

The people really made the party too, we deeply treasure our friends and family in our lives and they all made every moment memorable, the speeches were also great!

Our first dance was to Guantanamera  –  The sandpipers. The song had a real Spanish beach feel to it, and we love the beach and have a big interest in Spanish culture. (We actually want to charter a sailing boat around the coast of south America in the future).

If we could impart any advice we would say…

Do one thing per month.

Don’t settle for the first quote, you will be amazed how many creative talented people there are willing to do a better job for less.

Never say no to a helping hand, the band, makeup and dress were all from family and friends, this makes the guests also feel more part of the wedding.

Love this gorgeous beach wedding? Browse other beautiful beachy days too!

wedding credits / photographer: tanya strauss photography / wedding venue: coral divers / brides dress: marinda wilmans / grooms suit: pierre cardin / brides shoes: homemade / bridesmaid dresses: unknown / bridesmaid shoes: homemade / hair & makeup: sony smit and veronica whitman / florist: bridal party / wedding cake: ma shop, sodwana bay / catering: coral divers

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