In June of 2009, Elizabeth Reim and Micah van Rensburg were both invited on a youth leadership seminar before their senior year of high school. “We quickly became friends, ended up attending the same university, and studied abroad together,” Elizabeth recalls. But it wasn’t until September of 2012 that the pair finally started dating. Eight years, six months, and 22 days after they first met, Micah proposed to Elizabeth during a sunset picnic in Malibu, but that wasn’t the only surprise he had in store. “We went to his parents’ house to celebrate with friends and family, and that’s when Micah gave me Kenu, our chocolate Lab puppy!”
The couple wanted to marry in Malibu as well, and on August 26, 2018, they invited 185 guests to join them at Saddlerock Ranch. “The space is so open and unique," Elizabeth says. "And what’s not to love, with rolling vineyards on one side and Stanley the Giraffe on the other?” They planned a joyful and sustainable celebration (no plastics here!) that combined Elizabeth’s California roots and Micah’s home country of South Africa. Inspired by their love of adventure, they incorporated travel-inspired accents into their neutral palette, making the most of the gorgeous setting while also making their wedding day "feel like them."
Micah & Elizabeth's Real Wedding | Malibu, CA
“My bridesmaids and I all got ready at the ranch,” Elizabeth says. “I loved spending the morning doing yoga with them and watching the details come together.”
The couple kept their attire light and breezy, with the bride in a flowing Flora by Rinat Asher gown and the groom in a gray Ted Baker suit. "I wanted to choose something I knew I would be comfortable in and that went with the venue," says the bride of her dress. "It was airy and flow-y, and I knew I wouldn’t have to worry much about it." The bride accessorized with a Daphne Newman veil and Stuart Weitzman heels, while the groom added a tie clip that featured the coordinates of their wedding venue.
Elizabeth’s bridesmaids wore pale blue dresses by Show Me Your Mumu. The groomsmen wore gray suits that coordinated with Micah's attire, and each added their wedding day gift from the groom: a tie clip featuring coordinates from a special memory they'd shared together.
The bride and her 'maids all carried organic bouquets of eucalyptus and smilax, filled with white roses, lisianthus, and blue sea holly.
The famous Stanley the Giraffe, who lives nearby, even came by to wish the bride luck before she walked down the aisle.
The ceremony took place beneath a gorgeous oak tree, where Micah and Elizabeth exchanged vows they'd written themselves under an altar of greenery. To further personalize the ceremony, the bride's brother played Elvis Presley's "Can't Help Falling in Love" for the processional and the groom's brother joined him for "O Come to the Altar" during communion.
After exchanging vows, the newlyweds slipped away for a short ride around the property in a vintage Land Rover decorated with South African bumper stickers and strings of Coke cans.
During cocktail hour, guests enjoyed ahi tacos and spicy margaritas as they played corn hole.
The couple literally highlighted their travel theme with a guest book in the shape of a globe. They asked each of their guests (who had traveled from all over the world!) to find their home country and add their signature there.
Copper signage was utilized throughout the reception space, from the seating chart display to the personalized bar menu. “We chose wines that represented us,” says Elizabeth. “We had a California white because it’s where we met and fell in love, a French rosé because that is where my family is from, and a South African red because that is where Micah and his family are from.”
Long dining tables were set beneath more towering oak trees adorned with streams of string lights, and copper chairs were placed at each table to help transition the event from day to night.
Deep blue runners covered the bare wood tables, which were also flanked by gold-rimmed glass chargers and topped with petite arrangements in copper and brass vessels. Each place setting was finished with yet another traveler’s touch: an embossed leather luggage tag.
The family-style dinner included pan-roasted mahi-mahi, grilled filet mignon, and summer vegetables. “Instead of cake, we had doughnuts, crème brûlée, and cheesecake bites,” says Elizabeth. While everyone was on the dance floor, they served French fries (the bride's favorite snack) and biltong (a South African dried meat and the groom's favorite snack).
“It was amazing to have all of our people together in one place,” says the bride. “We really worked so hard to make our wedding day authentic to who we are. As we started planning, we sat down and dreamed of our perfect celebration, and kept returning to that vision throughout the process. It was refreshing (and helpful!) to remember what we really wanted.”