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A colourful celebration

14 Jul 2011

A colourful celebration

The bride wore white and the groom’s family a colourful array of traditional Nigerian costume. We spoke to bride Mary Cadge about her extra special day.

Image gallery

Image gallery

The special day of Johnathan Afolabi Akin-George and Mary Cadge was destined to be a brilliant day, whatever the weather, the bonus being the sun shone too.

It was a doubly special occasion for the wedding couple, as they were also having their daughter Molly Imogen Tosan, two, baptised at the same time.

“The whole church service was beautiful,” said Mary, thinking back to her special day, which began with her and her bridesmaids getting ready at her parents’ house in Yelverton, away from the eyes of the groom and his friends, who had spent the night at Sprowston Manor Hotel before a morning outing to the driving range on the wedding day.

The day of the wedding had dawned bright and sunny and the journey to Framingham Pigot Church in a car from Beauford Belles went without a hitch, possibly due to a practice drive the week before to check out the best route.

“They were brilliant,” said Mary, 35. “They drove out the week before the wedding to see how long it would take and the best roads to get to the church.”

Safely at the church, Mary was welcomed by gospel choir Joyful Soundz, who sang two songs before she arrived, three during the signing of the register and one as the newlyweds walked down the aisle on their way out. She said: “We’ve had a lot of feedback from our friends saying how brilliant they were.”

The special theme of the day was carried on by family friend Lady Thorne, who created the flower arrangements and bouquets as a gift.

With the sun still shining, the wedding party was able to have drinks and canapés outside Brasted’s, in Framingham Pigot, where the reception was being held, followed a speech by Mary’s Godfather.

Inside, it was time to carry on the formalities with the cutting of the cupcake cake, supplied by Vanilla Patisserie at Leiston, before a sit-down meal for 160 people. “The food was amazing and the service first class,” said Mary. “Brasted’s was absolutely brilliant and worked so hard to make the day a success and the food was excellent. So often for that many people it isn’t and it’s a real shame when you spend that much money.

“We didn’t have to pick food from a list of choices. They discussed what we would like and made suggestions. For dessert we had three small puddings, one of which was our chocolate cupcake.”

After speeches and pudding, Mary said she spent the rest of the night on the dance floor, with band The Child providing the music. “We had seen them at a friend’s wedding and they were absolutely brilliant,” said Mary, who spent her first night with her 34-year-old new husband at Sprowston Manor Hotel.

Her final word was about her amazing pictures: “The photographers were Georgina and Leah from Button Portraits. They were brilliant and not at all bossy and as you can see took some wonderful shots.”

All dressed up

The traditional attire worn at the wedding is particular to the Yoruba people of Nigeria. It is common place to see the Yoruba people dress in this fashion at special occasions and it is known that Nigerians are a highly-dressed society.

The attire for women is called Iro and Buba and this is worn with the head dress called Gele and Pele/Iborun. This can be designed/tailored to the wearer’s particular taste. The men wear what is called Agbada, which is also worn with a head cap called Fila, which again can be styled to individual taste.

The attire worn by the father of the groom, Chief Akin-George, is called Aso-Oke, Olowududu, which is worn at high ceremony and expensive occasions such as weddings and funerals.

They are made from a special and expensive material and tend to be reserved for people in high society due to the expense.

Daughter Hannah said: “It is not because dad is a Chief that he is wearing the Aso-Oke, it is just a tradition he has maintained at the weddings of all his children. But it also reflects his status within the Yoruba community.”

Photography by:

Georgina Button, Button Portraits, 07740 815891, www.buttonportaits.co.uk

Leah Geiser-Wilson, Leahanne Photography, 07980 929616, www.leahanne.co.uk

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