Kyly Zakheim, an associate partner at Carta, and Ryan Rabin, a songwriter and record producer, and also the drummer-producer of Grouplove, had one uniqe wedding.
“Technically, we met in preschool,” says Kyly.
They reunited for a weekend during the fall of Kyly’s freshmen year at Northwestern University.
“Despite the many airline miles we racked up visiting each other over the years, I hadn’t yet made it to South Africa when Christmas 2014 rolled around,” says Kyly.
“I’m normally the planner, but Ryan very much took the reins on this one. I should’ve known it was going to be something extra-special as a result.”
The couple explored Cape Town and then ended the trip on safari in Kruger National Park atLondolozi. Even after 10 years of dating, “I really had no idea he was going to propose on this trip,” says Kyly. “We were never in any rush and already felt married in so many ways.”
Ryan designed the ring himself, incorporating a diamond passed down from his great-great-aunt.
Through weekly Skype calls, hundreds of emails, shared Pinterest boards, and a zillion inspiration photos, they planned the wedding with the ease and efficiency of professional planners. “Unlike most brides, I didn’t get to see my table settings or flower arrangements ahead of time, participate in a tasting, or even see where my ceremony would take place before the moment itself,” says Kyly. “But none of that mattered to us.”
The ceremony took place under an ebony tree in the Sabi Sands area of Kruger National Park. The couple had only seen the location in photos until they each walked down the aisle.
The couple chose traditional safari director’s chairs and placed a letterpress program on each one. They wanted a very simple chuppah adorned to effectively harmonize with the existing surrounding plants, using mostly local greenery, some white florals, and proteas (South Africa’s national flower).