From Rags to Riches


Dreams do come true especially when you least expect it. Young Kenyan couple, Ann Wambui and Wilson Mutura, got their happy ending despite dreary beginnings.  From t-shirt on denim to designer wedding trousseau and all-expense paid honeymoon in Dubai, love definitely conquers all. Omolola Itayemi reports
Love and at least $1 for the rings
Wedding ceremonies across the continent have generally become extremely lavish as couples spend thousands of naira to have their dream wedding. A couple in Kenya recently did the opposite, spending just $1 on their wedding, proof that you don’t have to be extravagant and break the bank to wed the person you love.
T-shirts don’t make the best wedding trousseau but not the Muturas who went against all odds to get hitched in simple t-shirts on denim skirt and trousers. Devoid of any finery, they took their oaths and became a couple on January 22 making them an internet sensation after photos from their simple wedding went viral.
If money played any role in their union it was minimal as the wife had no make-up on, a common staple with wives and guests during marriage ceremonies and their rings were two steel circles. Their wedding took place at Community Christian Worship Centre, in Kasarani area, Nairobi, officiated by Pastor Jasper Ojwach. The two exchanged vows after the sermon.

Not only did their wedding story trend worldwide, the couples who had dated for three years before deciding to tie the knot were inundated with gifts and packages from Kenyans thanks to their 1$ (Kshs. 100, N1500) frugal wedding. Social media was abuzz with excitement and amazement on how a couple could hold a wedding so cheaply.
The romantic story of Wilson, 27, and his bride Ann, 24, fruit sellers who live in a poor suburb of Nairobi captured the attention of many people across the world.
“I was marrying the person I fell in love with, so I couldn’t wait until I become financially stable. My financial situation couldn’t allow me to have a big wedding. Furthermore, I was marrying the love of my life,” said the groom, Muturi.

The wedding day
The couple boarded the public transport on Sunday, 22 January 2017, and walked to the church, where the pastor was waiting for them with a few members of the congregation. At first, the congregation thought it was all a joke, until they started exchanging vows.
There were no flowers, or lavish venue, no cakes, nor decorations and no gown for the bride not even a suit for the groom. Just red t-shirts worn by the two, a symbol of their love.
The $1 catered for the rings that they exchanged during their wedding ceremony, there was no lavish reception, no honeymoon, just the exchange of rings, vows and a kiss.
After the wedding, the couple went home cooked Ugali and kales (an affordable Kenyan delicacy.
Previously, Wilson and Ann had to postpone the wedding twice in 2016 because the budget was $300, which was for wedding gown, and transport.
The church paid for the pair’s marriage/wedding licence fee.
“I believe money should not stop young people like us from getting married. If people love each other and want to marry they should,” Ann said.
Weddings are always colorful and behind the glitz and glamour, the couple will eventually sweat to foot the bills, soliciting for support from every corner, taking loans, and sometimes having to live in debts.
The Mutura’s have however proven that you don’t have to be extravagant and break your bank to marry and wed the person you love. All you need is love and at least $1 for the rings
From Sh1 to Sh3.5M wedding
However, the humility of the couple appears to have paid off as several companies have come out with huge detailed package for the couple including a first class wedding, honeymoon and many more goodies.
The wedding took place on Valentine’s Day, 14 February, when the humble Kenyan couple  finally had their second wedding ceremony, a lavish one at the Eden Bliss Gardens in Kiambu County. The ceremony planned by one of Kenya’s top events planner, Slique Events Planner Limited had high-end  decorators and caterers. Any woman’s dream is to walk down the aisle in a beautiful wedding gown and Ann was not disappointed this time as she strolled down the aisle of her classy-elegant designer with Wilson also decked in designer wears for free by city’s top designers.The groom’s family were equally ferried in vans from Ndunyu Njeru in Kinangop while the bride’s family from Karandi in Nyahururu to Cinema to witness the day.
Good things comes in threes they say and that’s the luck of the Muturas with Bonfire Adventures and Event offering an all-expense paid honeymoon package. Fine Cinema Production for free make-up artist and photo-shoot. Lilian, a volunteer in U.S has pledged start-up capital for a small business whichever Anne will find appealing. Moses Meingati has offered one goat as a wedding gift. Geoffrey Ngari has pledged a cake to the couple.
Lessons learned
Wedding ceremonies in Nigeria are generally very expensive events, sometimes affecting negatively the finance of the couple. The pressure from society to do it ‘well’ has been listed as one of the reasons for divorce. Basically, the Muturas, situation is a reference for celebrating weddings or other social events as you can afford, and who knows, lady luck might just smile at you, as it did the Muturas.