Cape Town Wedding Theme inspired by the Blushing bride flower.

Possibly one of Joel Grahams most successful designs, the Blushing Bride solitaire was inspired by the Serruiria Florida. This beautiful paper like flower is native to Franshoek and has a delightful story behind its colloquial name.

Its six claw solitaire has a deceivingly simple top view with a complex basket hidden underneath the centre diamond. Because of the repeated triangle shapes making up the basket, it has an incredible structural integrity that will last a lifetime.

The band of the ring is chamfered for maximum comfort of wear. Whether you prefer gold or platinum this design will bring out the utmost sparkle to your centre diamond with the open petal design of the basket. There really is no ring that compares to the Cape Diamonds Blushing Bride!

The favourite flower of the season

Serruria Florida or The Blushing Bride as it is fondly referred to, is this wedding season’s favourite flower. Possibly one of the most perfectly named flowers for a wedding, this fynbos earned its name from the common practice of gentlemen, who in the late 1700s, who would pick bunches of these flowers for their sweethearts. The more intense the pink colour of the blooms the more imminent a proposal. On the day that they were to ask for the maidens hand in marriage they would wear a strikingly bright bloom with a deep pink colour in their jacket’s button hole. Everyone in town would then know of their intentions – hence a ‘blushing bride’.

The Serruria Florida was originally discovered in Franshoek in 1773 by a Swedish Botanist known as Carl Thunberg. It then strangely disappeared from scientific records for nearly 100 years. After being rediscovered, botanists who had previously thought it to be extinct painstakingly planted and nurtured the seeds in Kirstenbosh Gardens. This has become the heirloom source for all cultivated specimens used for commercial farming. In its natural habitat, the Blushing Bride is under threat from alien invaders. However, many steps are being taken to preserve this incredible piece of South African Heritage.

The Mountaineering Club of South Africa has developed a program to eradicate alien species plaguing our natural reserves. This is done by hand and is slow and labour-intensive; but reports from the late Shelmadene de Gersigny – who spent many years spearheading these expeditions; show a large decrease in the alien invaders. Estates such as La Motte are also working towards bringing the flower back to its former glory by re-establishing them on the slopes of the Wemmershoek mountain in Franschoek.

Blushing Brides for anything from bouquets to cakes

Blushing Brides bloom from Late May to September, making them ideal for a winter wedding. Fortunately for brides however, the flower is grown in other counties now as well and imported when not in season. The unique wispy paper like petals create a fragile feeling. Almost as if to say that this moment is fleeting. Because of the paper like petals, Blushing Bride blooms can last up to three weeks in a vase of water, they do great out of water as well and can last nearly two days like this. Paired with other fynbos such as white heath (Erica Formosa) or just on its own, the Blushing Bride makes a charming bridal bouquet. It is possible to find this bloom in shades of white green and pink, making it easy to combine them into almost any arrangement.

Sugar Flowers are now common place on wedding cakes and bakeries such as Charley’s in Zonnebloem, have perfected this technique. Following the latest trend in cakes fresh flowers such as the blushing bride are frequently used as a more authentic decoration. Serruria Florida although not the first choice of flower to eat is not poisonous and so can easily be added to garnish almost anything.

Drinks, silverware and crystal glasses

Celebratory drinks are an essential part of many weddings. Continuing with the feminine Blushing Bride theme, a pink gin and tonic will fit the part perfectly. Creating a “gin bar” can give a sense of generosity to the event, the freedom to pour and garnish a drink yourself makes a guest feel welcome to be themselves.

Coupling your Blushing Bride flowers with antique pieces such as crystal and tarnished silver will create a uniquely distressed but homely look. Using grans old silverware and mismatched crystal glasses can help ease the hefty costs involved in hiring good quality utensils for your guests to eat and drink from. If you are not lucky enough to have heirloom pieces, thrift shopping may just be the ticket!

Looking through second hand and antique shops can be a fun social part of wedding prep. Take the girls with you and you will have a few more pairs of eyes for you to easily spot the bargains in the dust. These could be added to your trousseau and ultimately your combined house contents.

Hair Trends

Bridal hair trends for 2019 are simple understated and far from fussy. Of course what would a bride be without flowers in her hair. In 2019 this tradition gets a bit of a change up. Inspired by the spring/summer 2019 fashion week in New York last month, flowers are being used loosely in hair. Curly hair is being spotted with tiny blooms in no particular fashion.

The Blushing Bride of course would be the perfect flower to use, its weight is next to nothing, lasts well without water and is unlikely to cause allergies. To sum it all up – less is more, the quicker the better, trust your own personal beauty.

Dress to impress

Theme your dress with pops of colour! Taking the colour theme of the Blushing Bride bloom further might lead you to look at ombre effects, where the colours fade from light to dark or dark to light. The Blushing Bride’s pallet presents delicate femininity that accentuates the fragility of the famous flower’s bloom. Changing hues of pink neutrals mixed with warm metallics, provide an enchanting cross between vintage and modern. It is a warm, romantic palette which paints a nostalgic picture.

Gold or platinum?

How do you choose between yellow gold, rose gold, white gold and platinum. They really are incredibly beautiful in their own right. Many brides already know what they prefer, however, if you are in two minds then this may just help you make the decision.

All gold is alloyed as it is much too soft to use in its pure state. At Cape Diamonds we work with 9K and 18K. Rose and yellow gold are warm earthy colours which are easy to maintain as Cape diamonds offers free cleaning and polishing for life, therefore you will be able to keep your engagement ring looking new. If you prefer white metals then white gold and platinum may suit you best. White gold and platinum are very similar in colour, however white gold is noted to be a more brilliant white colour where Platinum has often been said to have a bit more of a grey shine to it.

It can be rather difficult to see the difference to the untrained eye, it is easier to tell the difference by weight. White gold is much lighter than platinum and is a great choice if your ring is a substantial. White gold does require maintenance, to achieve its brilliance, the metal is plated with a white metal called rhodium. This process needs to be repeated every six months. Platinum is a pure white metal and so does not need any maintenance.

Above is an example of the gorgeous stationary that can be created with the blushing bride theme. The delicate blooms could be used pressed and added to the front of the invitation.

Putting things together to finish off your Blushing Bride theme can be as easy as just running a few final buds in strategic places. One of the biggest things to understand about a theme is that anything can be used to carry through the idea. Whether it is just shades of colour or found objects, whatever you like best should be what you decide to use.