Traditional Zulu Wedding – Nadja + Sandile

Nadja is a striking women with long blonde hair and twinkling eyes, she could be a German princess from a by gone era although her expressive face and enormous smile might have been too much for royalty of the passed. They always seemed to look so sad with those deadpan expressions in old paintings and pictures, and deadpan is not a way I would describe anyone from this family! Animated, inspiring, joyful, kind hearted, motivated and enlivened are however words that could be used! They are the type of people who I love to photograph. They are the type of people I love to be around!

On the 3rd of September 2017 Nadja married her Zulu prince for the 3rd time in a traditional Zulu ceremony in Eshowe where Sandile’s family live. It was such a wonderful experience for this photographer. I am fascinated by culture, by colour, by people and by emotion. This celebration was one of my most favourite weddings to shoot in my whole career and I hope you can tell!

If you would like to see their other weddings click here or here!

I have no more words for you guys, just pictures and a mountain of gratitude for picking me to shoot your wedding x

And for the credits and a few words from the groom ..

I have learned never to underestimate the power of the universe in its ability to conspire in making the unimaginable a reality.  It had never crossed my mind I would meet a life partner so genuine, loving, caring, fun and of course so beautiful! I’m eternally grateful to the universe for this gift and indeed for having introduced me to the woman I now so proudly call my wife. I’m also forever indebted to our community of friends and our families who have supported and loved us in both the complexity and beauty of our journey. We are where we are because you have been there to celebrate with us and also there to uplift us when we faced difficulties. I am thrilled that most of you were here to witness and embrace our union. I know I won a friendship lottery in all of you. The manner in which you all immersed yourselves in the cultural experience and spectacle so warmly set up by my family assures me of your unconditional love and appreciation.

Ngabe ngenza iphutha uma ngingadlulisi ukubonga kubobonke abasihlanganisela lomcimbi ukuze ube yimpumelelo. Nonke, ngamunye ngamunye,  niyinxenye yempilo yethi ngezindlela ezahlukahlukene. Angazi singaqala kuphi ukunibonga. Ngifisa ukubonga uMama uBusi Manqele ngokupheka ukudla okwashiya izivakeshi zethu zingawuvali umlomo. Zonke zafinya ngendololwane zakhomba nangophakathi.

It honestly does feel like I have come full circle with you Mama Busi in my journey. You and I know how grateful I am for all that you have been to me at the point when no one gave me a chance at life. For me it was not just food that you brought to our traditional wedding but something so deep and beautiful. Something that reminded me of the complexity and beauty of my journey.

To Jacki and Liz, thank you once again for being amazing and so damn talented. Your ability to do what you do with such passion and dedication is heart-warming. To Patt from Modish Events SA, thank you for sharing your creativity with us and for brightening our ceremony. To Dave and Abs from The Minerals, thanks you ‘three’  J for embracing us and capturing the audio-visual magic we so look forward to seeing. The memories you have all helped us to create are timeless and we will always cherish them.

Last but not least, ngaphandle koNdabezitha, Omthiya, Osontsikase lomcimbi wawungeke uwuphonse umbalane. Ngidlulisa ukubonga kakhulu kuMkhuba eziwenzayo eziwenzela entabeni ngoba ekhaya zesaba abadala nokaMaduna kaMsuthu ngokuba yizinsika zaseMaMbatheni. Ngaphandle kwenu umuzi woMthiya ngabe kawukho. Ngiyabonga kokuthi namukele umkami ngezandla ezifudumele!

Venue: Mbatha homestead in Eshowe, Wombane

Second Shooter: Lizzy Donnell

Decor: Patt from Modish Events SA ( and some of the decor elements made by the bride and her wedding fairies

Flowers: Buds in a Ro (

Hair: Alana from Kiss and Makeup (

Makeup: Alana from Kiss and Makeup (

Bridal party traditional outfit (dresses and shirts): The awesome and extremely talented Adam and Yamkela (0739389496)

Videographer: Dane and Abigail Kemper from the Minerals (

Catering: The most amazing Mama Busi Manqele (0722287157)


  1. Tricia on October 17, 2017 at 9:33 am

    Tears are pouring down my cheeks! Simply awesome!

  2. Rachel Tiearney on October 17, 2017 at 9:43 am

    Gawd!!! This left a huge frog in my throat! Just the most genuine, beautiful, rare love! Be forever blessed. xxx

  3. Julie Dawson on October 17, 2017 at 9:59 am

    Wow what a beautiful colourful happy wedding. You can feel the love.

  4. Debby on October 17, 2017 at 10:08 am

    Absolutely beautiful, also have a tear running down my cheek.

  5. Mike Beuster on October 17, 2017 at 3:06 pm

    Wow! The joy and love I see from this wedding is unbelievable.
    The pictures not only capture a moment … it captures a lifetime!!

  6. Sthe on October 17, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    This right here is what I love about your work!!!! Your pictures made me feel the beauty, love and joy of this wedding. One word which sums this up is Magnificent!!!

  7. Tash Palmboom on October 18, 2017 at 5:31 am

    Wow Jax. I can clearly see why this would have been a favorite for you. So much radiant love, colour, groove and joy! Slightly envious that you witnessed such an amazing experience – thank you, thank you for sharing this with us! xxx

  8. paula van den Boogaart on October 27, 2017 at 11:04 am

    amazimg, simply amayzing

  9. Farah on January 14, 2018 at 5:45 am

    I got a frog in my throat and something in my eye. I don’t know these people from a bar of soap, but looking at these photos shows Love Respect Joy and such fun! Jackie you are a genius
    Wow! Wow! Wow!

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