Yvonne & Sanele Mncube
… at our traditional ceremony called Umembeso, which is where the groom’s family takes gifts to the bride’s family to thank them for raising her.
Where did you meet?
At the Nelson Mandela Academic Hospital in Umtata, Eastern Cape, in 2008. Sanele was doing his medical internship and I was a fourth-year medical student.
How did he propose?
Although Sanele had always said he would marry me one day, he officially proposed – as in got down on one knee – at our traditional ceremony called Umembeso, which is where the groom’s family takes gifts to the bride’s family to thank them for raising her. I wasn’t expecting the actual ring and proposal at that point so it was a lovely surprise. We both wept tears of joy and my entire family was elated!
Please tell us about your wedding day
It was the perfect setting for an elegant vintage wedding. The soft pastel colours we picked for the day were perfect. The attention to detail and personal touches all showed how much we love each other, from the personalised wedding favours to a selection of our favourite classic love songs. We made sure our guests were thoroughly entertained, there was an abundance of great food and champagne flowed. It was a fairytale!
If you could change one thing about your wedding, what would it be?
We would use the garden rather than the chapel for the wedding. The garden had been set up but we changed our minds at the last minute as it had been raining all week.
What was the highlight of your day?
There were so many highlights… My dad walking me down the aisle; my husband’s vows, which had everyone in tears; my two amazing wedding gowns, one long and one short; my three headpieces; the amazing jazz band; my grandfather’s speech, and dancing with my mother, which had us both in tears! For Sanele, the highlights were seeing me walk down the aisle, hearing my heartfelt vows, and his dashing tuxedo and shoes. Also, our first dance together and speeches from our loved ones.
How did it feel to stand next to each other as husband and wife?
It felt amazing! It was a confirmation of what we have felt for each other for years.
Where did you go on honeymoon?
We didn’t go on honeymoon as we did not get enough time away from work, but we’re working towards the honeymoon of our dreams, hopefully sometime this year!
What advice would you give a bride-to-be?
Invest in a good wedding planner; mine was superb! That way, everything is taken care of for you. Start the planning early and invest in a good skincare regime. Remember, the wedding pictures are forever. Most importantly, enjoy every moment of your day – it goes by so fast! And lastly, pray.