Any day we’ve got a wedding from Lara Hotz and The Yaya Collective to share, we know it’s going to be a good one. Yael and Ariell’s wedding was chock full of garden goodness, with just the right amount of eclecticism all put together by the helping hands of family and friends. This is a good one, guys.
From the bride, Yael: We wanted to create a warm and inviting atmosphere, with an eclectic and personal feel, and most of all, we wanted it to be fun for everyone involved. We always try to be resourceful and work with what we create, collect and/or have readily available to us. So this meant a family DIY wedding and that’s the vibe we were going for. We sourced trailer-loads of decor and furniture and managed to get hold of some old hardwood fence palings that we restored and used to construct much of the decor used at our wedding.
Flower recipe: Dahlias, peonies, gerberas, willows, proteas, pincushion proteas and whatever green foliage we could get our hands on.
We loved the intimacy of long banquet-style shared tables with an abundance of food and drink. As we only had narrow standard size trestle tables available to us we had to improvise and make a plan to create this feel. We restored some of the hardwood palings and collected green bottles to construct functional centrepieces that doubled up as food stands and decorative flower vases. We had a traditional Jewish ceremony, but we wanted a whimsical and relaxed feel. We constructed a freestanding chuppah out of more of the restored recycled wooden palings with white fabric drapes, and a vintage Persian rug. We wanted to incorporate things we liked into our wedding. We love succulents. We grabbed as many jars as we could get our hands on and created terrariums which we hung and scattered all over. We also love bougainvillea. We sprinkled the fuchsia pink petals down the aisle for a splash of colour. And we liked the idea of our guests being engaged in the ceremony and event. We created “wedding wands”, and made a bunch of signs that we scattered about the venue so there was a touch of “us” everywhere our guests went.
When we first found the venue we fell in love with it. It provided a lush green background with plenty of foliage and a white Indian-style marquee. But we felt we needed to add a splash of colour and excitement to it all. We went for summer corals, peach, pinks, and reds and brought some green foliage and recycled green flower-filled bottles. We also used natural, recycled wooden materials and light coffee stained tablecloths to tie it all together. The entire wedding was a big DIY Family project. We handmade our wedding signs, wedding wands, food-flower table boards, succulent terrariums, chuppah (arch from our ceremony), tablecloths, hand painted wine glasses with guest names, hanging flower halos, hanging porcelain charms, Yael’s bouquet, Yael’s engagement ring, table & wall floral arrangements, ribbon arches, and even Yael’s wedding dress.
Any advice for couples planning their weddings now? First and foremost, try to get your friends and family involved – the more people have invested in it, the more they tend to enjoy the day. Find inspiration from anything and everything and work with what you have. Leave enough time to experiment and create your own decor and don’t be afraid to add a personal touch. On the big day, you just have to go with the flow and be ready to adapt and adjust. No matter how much planning you do, the chances of everything going exactly to plan are slim to none, so it is really important to find someone who you trust with your vision to take charge on the day, and then you just go with it.
View all images from this wedding in the gallery
Mix of jazz, funk, hip hop, swing, and all-time classic dance tunes!
Processional: “Follow the Sun,” Xavier Rud
First Dance: “Sing Sing Sing,” Benny Goodman