Real Wedding : Tania and Rudolf Oosthuizen

6 Jun

Rudolf and Tania met whilst at University together. They are an incredibly special couple because of the very real tangible love they have for one another. What started as an amazing friendship has developed into a marriage made in Heaven. Their special relationship translated into the wedding they had to celebrate their marriage.

The Love of my existence (life seems too short) and I took our vows before family, friends and God on a Saturday, 23rd of October 2010, at 14:30 in the Dutch Reformed Church in Franschhoek and the reception was held at Alleé Bleue wine farm, just outside of Franschhoek.

Everything about that decision was sentiment-loaded. My grandmother was born on the 23rd of October 1913 and had an immense influence on my life. When I went to varsity, she gave me a heart-shaped stamp-ring with a tiny ruby in it and with 2 A’s engraved on. Her first big love gave it to her when they were 16, but he was murdered next to her a few years later. Her words to me were: “I hope you find your heart in Stellenbosch.” Her wish came true!

My father spent his High School years in Franschhoek and their home was right opposite the Dutch Reformed Church. I remember him telling me that they watched the weddings from their porch. Their house is now a tiny mall, with his room being the travel agents. We spent Christmas holidays there and I always loooved the church.

Christine Coetzee was our wedding coordinator and such a blessing through the whole experience. (We’re still in touch). My husband, Rudolf, and I both have a variation of allergies and intolerances which were incorporated into our menu with extremely little fuss and no compromise on quality and uniqueness. We had our couple and wedding-party photos before the ceremony, so we were able to enjoy canapé melon balls and Parma ham, with cocktails before the reception with our guests. The rest was buffet style:


Cold Meat Platter with Gherkins and Pickled Onions

Smoked Chicken Salad with Pineapple and Sweet Chilli Sauce

Smoked Fish Platter with a Caper Dressing and Parmesan Shavings

Spinach and Feta Salad with Crispy Bacon Chips

Traditional Greek Salad

Potato and Leek Salad served with Vegetable Achar

Butternut soup served with fresh bread



Wagon Wheel Salad

Coleslaw and Sultanas


Rosemary Roast Potatoes with Crushed Peppercorns and Maldon Sea Salt

Steamed Basmati Rice

Lyonnaise Potatoes


Oven Roasted Vegetables

Asian Vegetable Stir Fry

Cauliflower and Broccoli Bake


Tagliatelle with a Basil Pesto

Macaroni Bake with Tomato and Parmesan

Riggatoni with Gorgonzola Sauce and Herbs


Fried Line Fish served with a Saffron Cream

Thai Green Curry with Chicken

Chicken Ballotine with an Apricot and Herb Stuffing


Roast Leg of Lamb with Rosemary and Garlic

Roast Pork Shoulder

Roast Beef with a Béarnaise Sauce


A trio of chocolate mousse

Mini pavlovas

Fruit skewers

Tiramisu Gâteau


At about 23:00 we had more cheese boards come out with pickles, preserves and port.

Drinks were comprised of Alleé Bleue’s own white and red wine, with champagne we brought in ourselves as the farm does not produce MCC or champagne. Exquisite wine! The white wine was Starlette Blanc and the red wine was Starlette Pinotage.


During deciding on whether to have a small, intimate wedding (albeit by the coast) or what was later to be referred to as a white circus, I dreamt one night that as I was walking down the aisle, I “see” everyone that is not there (i.e., everyone that would not have been at a small, intimate wedding) and when I finally reached Rudolf, I turned to him and said “We can’t do this.” God knows his children! It’s old, it’s borderline unoriginal and it’s as cliché as can be, but I will always remember everyone we love and cherish and have influence in our life in one room, laughing and sharing and just relaxing with the sun setting over the vineyards outside. Also, the fact that my body was extremely sore from laughing the next day, was a big bonus.

Sharing getting ready with my best friends was also great. Everyone played to their absolute strength: Angé doing her best to keep me calm and everything organised, Lauren getting the party started, Coleen with her infectious laugh and calmness and Taryn seeing that things are perfect and organising food!

There were some tourists walking by when we arrived to rendezvous with our wedding-party for photos that took pictures of me in my white dress wearing Wellies! They were my something borrowed. As Angé and I arrived at the church, with Manny, our driver of our classic Bently, Dutch tourists also gathered to look on and congratulate.

Manny prayed for Rudolf and myself as we were driving back to the venue (eyes open!). So special!

“CHALLENGE ACCEPTED!” (with apologies to How I Met Your Mother)

It was said to me somewhere down the way that weddings highlight every single issue and little political playing card that exist between people. True. My father said to me early on: “Kies waaraan jy jou steur en ignoreer die res.” (In essence, if it’s worth fighting about, make the fight worthwhile, otherwise, let it go.) THAT made all the difference to the planning process for me! Being in Johannesburg and organising things down in the Cape was challenging, you need to trust the people you work with! You get to a point where you ask yourself: “Does this reaaaaally matter to me? Will I remember it 5 years down the line?” Perspective is key. It’s about the marriage, not the wedding.


I would have liked to realise earlier that the last few weeks eat away at your waistline and had my dress made smaller in advance rather that spending the day making a grab to pull it up every now and again.

“NICE TO MEET ME, I AM DELIGHTFUL” (With apologies to Happy Feet 2)

The confetti we used were little Petria flowers. We still have the tree growing outside our family home in Kirkwood. As a child, I would play “trou-trou” and toss hands full of this flower into the air and run through it. It spins as it falls down, so adds extra oomph. Also, it’s purple, my favourite colour. My mother organised it for me as it was barely in season when we got married – quite symbolic. I also had a group of singers (Madrigaal sangers) for music as I walked down the aisle to Bach’s Air on a G-string.


The day goes by soooo fast. We had to be at the venue at 8am to get ready for photo’s, and when I wiped my eyes, we were back at the cottage and it was 00:00am. The ceremony went by within seconds, everyone else swore it was 45minutes, I am not so sure. The walk down the aisle felt like 2 steps, cocktails were gulped in a single swallow, dancing is a vague blurrish memory of laughing and hopping around. We barely finished saying hello to everyone and the first people started saying goodbye.
We were advised by our pastor that we should stop and take it all in every now and again. We did. Rudolf turned to me a few times during our couple photoshoot and dinner, to remind me that this is it, this is our wedding. Months of planning and a little stress and menu tastings and flower trials gets squashed into 16 hours or less…so unfair.


There comes a point where you have to accept that it’s not going to be 100% perfect and you can either let it go and enjoy the surprise or realise that having absolutely everything 100% your way, will come at a cost. Include both the mother’s – regardless of styles, emotions or attitudes; you are going to be in each other’s lives forever. Your husband’s mother raised him to be the man you are marrying and for that she is owed respect! Do not neglect the fathers; that hard shell is hiding a lot. Choose your bridal party carefully. You don’t want to look at your photos in 30 years and refer to a bridesmaid as “some girl.” Be grateful and graceful to everyone involved, once the wedding is over, your world will expand again and you shall want them there!

Practically speaking, splurge on your photographers before all else! Regardless that you will have those pictures forever, you need to trust them to bring out your best, be compatible with their style of photography as well as them as people! Memories fade, speeches get lost, video recordings get damaged -that picture in the hallway, will tell a large part of your story and you need to trust the person painting it!

Take the people’s actions around you as coming from a good place first, ask questions about motives later.

Pray for your wedding. God loves you and wants the best for you, even if it’s not exactly what you want.


Rudolf to the husbands: “Live through the emotion, not in it. Accept that mood swings are part and parcel of your wife and that you have to stay the constant support that she will turn to.”

Tania to the wives: “Don’t expect the movies. They roll credits at the end. Life brings dirty socks and snoring. It’s all normal.”

Wedding remorse will hit even the most apathetic bride when she realises she is now “wife.” ( Like Monica said in Friends: “I’ll never be a bride again, now I’m just someone’s wife”). Deal with it. Let go all the issues that were part of planning. No one knows that you wanted light medium pink roses and got medium pink, or that you wanted Star Gazers and got St Josephs. Take the compliments as genuine and say thank you. Stick all your cards in a book and read them sometimes, your guests weren’t just the people who finished the wine, came late, wore the inappropriate dress bla bla… they shared their wisdom, experiences and love.

After the honeymoon and -phase, reconnect with your friends!

Bottomline: It just keeps getting better!! God brought you together:

Jer 29:11 and John 10:10!


This would now be the part where it says: “The producers would like to thank…”

Bride: Me
Groom: Mine

Wedding-party: Awesome

Dress and veil: De La Vida Bridal Couture

Bridesmaids’ dresses: Big Blue, Rosebank Mall

Groomsmen’s suits: Own

Cravats and waistcoats: Material bought by bride and mom-in-law, tailor made by Burger Broers
Venue, catering and wine: Alleé Bleue (Christine Coetzee)
Flowers: Leipzig (Izette)
Photographers: Jorina Botha & Werner Jobse from Artistic Photography

DJ : Johann Wiid

Officiator: Pastor Mark Griffiths of Every Nation Stellenbosch

Make-up: Ansie Tracey

Hair: Kymric Hall Franschhoek (Lizette)

Somtehing old: Franschhoek memories

Something new: Dress

Something borrowed: Wellington boots from Lianél Ackerman (Angé’s sister)

Something blue: Tanzanite earings

Music for church: Madrigaal sangers (Celia Vos)


The DJ and I met through mutual friends in our fourth year at a 20-20 cricket match.

The photographer (Jorina) was the photographer at a friend’s wedding about 2 years before ours. I took a picture with the bride and my dress shifted to be precariously short. When my friend showed me her photos, Jorina edited the picture to make my dress longer. That was it. I wanted her and no one else. She is also highly recommended.

The make-up artist and I met when friends and I spent too much time at the Franschhoek uncorked festival one year. We didn’t want to drive home to Stellenbosch and ended in Ansie’s house as she is one of the girl’s that was with us, cousin. I remember her telling me what she does and when I finally contacted her again, she remembered me! “Jy het darem al op my bank geslaap…”


2 Responses to “Real Wedding : Tania and Rudolf Oosthuizen”

  1. Coleen Wednesday, June 6, 2012 at 8:13 am #

    Aah 🙂 it was a special day and to know I was part of it just makes it more special. I can truely say that it was a magical day and that the uniqueness of the day and night was true to Tania and Rudi!

    As always love this blogg


  1. Marriage « A Pinch of Salt - Monday, October 8, 2012

    […] friend, Tania Oosthuizen, whose wedding was featured here , sent me a quote spoken at her wedding. I thought it was brilliant so here I […]

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