Lowdown on wedding attire

REGARDLESS of how much the wedding is going to cost, it is essentially the bride's big day since everyone focuses on her and how she looks.

Hopefully, these nuptials are for life and, let's face it, this is the bride's opportunity to dress up and feel like a special princess regardless of the cost.

If cash is not an issue local designers will thrill you with their custom-fitted gowns and an appropriate price tag to match.

Speaking about the high cost of traditional wedding garments, designer Paledi Segapo of RJ Kay Creations told Sowetan: "First of all, it all depends on the amount of beading done on the garment and the price charged by the crafters we outsource to.

"Moreover, it normally takes them days and days prior to completion for each garment to be fully beaded by hand. Evidently clients will be expected to pay more for an extremely detailed beadedgarment."

Speaking about the Zulu bridal garment that Miss South Africa Tatum Keshwar wore earlier thi year at the Miss Universe pageant, pictured, earlier this year, Segapo said: "We needed to achieve a mermaid silhouette and incorporate tulle to give it a current look and feel. Hence the exorbitant price."

Segapo said that a dress like the one worn by Tatum could cost up to R25000.

For those whose cupboards are bursting because they have too many clothes, and who are not sentimental and don't wish to save their wedding dress for their unborn daughters, renting a dress is an option to consider.

An entire traditional Zulu bridal outfit, pictured right, complete with the pleated cow skin isidwaba (skirt), can be hired for as little as R350 from Madlamini at theKwaMai-Mai Market in Johannesburg.

In case you fall in love with the look and decide to buy, then the entire bridal outfit comes at a price tag of R2800.

Local crafters will design your head-dress, collar necklaces, bracelets, wedding apron, beaded stick and beaded brooms in whatever colours you desire.

Add the accessories to a vest, sleeveless bodice or bustiere and wrap or isidwaba, a colour coordinated satin wrap, plus some matching shoes and you are ready to walk down the aisle.

Then all you have to do is to arrange a hair appointment and have your make-up done!