‘I wanted my bridesmaids to stand out’
What you need to know:
- Loyce had always wanted her bridesmaids to stand out, just like the hostesses at a function. So, when it came to choosing an outfit for them, she suggested a suit. This not only made them the talk of the wedding, it was also a unique idea.
At a wedding ceremony, it is the norm for bridesmaids to wear long flowy dresses. Them showing up in suits would definitely send tongues wagging.
But this was the fashion statement that the bridesmaids at Loyce Natukunda, a banker, and Hannington Kanyesigye, a real estate businessman’s wedding made when they dressed in tailored black and white suits.
“I always wanted my maids to dress up as hostesses. When we were discussing what they would wear, I suggested the suits and since they are all my friends from high school, they welcomed the idea,” Loyce says.
They then started discussing colour choices and designs, also putting into consideration what the groomsmen would be wearing.
“The suits had to be feminine given that the groomsmen would wear suits as well. In the end, we settled for short coats at the front and a trench at the back,” Loyce adds.
However, the bridesmaids were forbidden from showing Loyce the final outfit until the big day. She wanted to be surprised and wowed together with her guests.
Agreeing on such a bold outfit defines Loyce and Hannington’s relationship; a brave team right from their courtship.
“We did not date for a long time. We met at Kyambogo University in 2009 and became friends. We only started dating in 2019 and got engaged in 2020, barely a year into our courtship,” the couple says.
Falling in love
“When I met Loyce, she was a member of the Christian Union at St Kakumba Chapel where I was a leader at the time. I remember her striking beauty and elegance,” Hannington recalls.
However, Loyce did not have any romantic feelings for Hannington even when he would always check on her and celebrate all her birthdays with gifts and a lot of pampering. Later, as their mutual friends kept praising Hannington and his character, Loyce was converted.
“His friends would go on and on about his intellect, smartness and good conduct. With time, I also fell in love with his passion for God which was one of the most outstanding character for me,” she narrates.
However, after University, Loyce lost interest in Hannington and although he continued asking her out on dates, she showed no interest.
“She was hard to impress,” Hannington says.
The couple recollects an interesting first date. This was the first date Loyce had agreed to and the firsttime that she gave her undivided attention to her husband.
“He invited me for a friend’s party but whatever was happening there is not what I expected. It was also weird that he did not show up for the party himself. When I called him to find out what was going on, he asked that I meet with him at Pinnacle Hotel in Mbarara City for an answer,” she shares.
At the meeting, Loyce continued asking Hannington all kinds of questions but to him, this was a sign that she wanted a serious relationship.
“She asked me why I had not married yet to which I answered that I would marry before the year ended,” he says, adding that this reassured her that she was single and had that much faith in her to want her as a wife.
When he finally decided to pop the question, Hannington’s only barrier was how to get Loyce to the venue without raising any suspicions. She had to travel from Ntungamo Town where she worked to Igongo Cultural Centre in Mbarara City where the proposal would take place.
“I told her to join my friends and I for a lunch date. I asked her sister to get her a dress and shoes and whatever else that was needed to make the outfit complete,” he shares.
“I hired a saxophonist, guitarists and laid a white carpet which was decorated with red roses (her favourite),” he adds.
When she finally arrived, Hannington got on one knee and asked for her hand in marriage. And regardless of her reservations on relationships, Loyce agreed to start this journey with him.
“Of course I had my personal fears due to failed previous relationships but I remained positive, especially since my husband had shown a commitment towards me and always put God before anything he did. I knew that if we go by this same principle, then God would guide us every step of the way,” she says.
On February 5, 2022 Hannington visited Loyce’s parents in Kayonza, Kanungu District after which, wedding preparations started.
However, according to Hannington, their budget exceeded its intended plan.
“Our budget totalled Sh60m, which was way above what I had planned. However, with immense support from friends and family, we were able to have the wedding of our dreams, leaving us debt-free in the end,” he says.
“We received immense support from friends and family which made the occasion colourful and less straining,” the couple says.
Hannington adds that the registered success was also partly due to his experience in chairing wedding meetings, which he had done for many of friends.
“I prioritised unity and order among the planning team and treated my committee as family. I also invested in some business property to set aside the business profits from the wedding expenditures which helped me manage finances,” he tips.
The pair walked down the aisle on February 12, 2022 at All Saints Church, Mbarara City, and later held a reception at Asmar Hotel in Mbarara City for about 900 guests.
The couple says prayer and putting God first in all they do has been and will continue being the most important reason their marriage is working. They add that even in the first days of their marriage, prayer helped them get closer to each other and through reading the Bible, they learnt ways of dealing with the anxiety that comes with living with someone for the first time.