Celebrity News

Pregnant pop star K’Lee’s bridal bliss: ‘this is my moment!’

We join the pregnant star as she shops for the perfect wedding dress ahead of her big day
Pictures: Emily Chalk

When former radio star and pop princess K’Lee walked into a designer boutique to find her dream bridal gown, the soon-to-be mum-of-six nervously cradled her growing baby bump as she looked through racks of beautiful dresses, accompanied by her eldest daughter Iliana.

“I wasn’t feeling very well since I was having morning sickness that afternoon. I was also anxious because I didn’t know what to expect,” says the former Mai FM radio host, 40, who is five months pregnant with her and fiancé Lama Saga’s surprise sixth baby.

“You look at these dresses and think, ‘Wow!’ They’re just stunning. Then when you see them on Instagram models, they’re even more beautiful. But I’m not your typical sample size – not with my Maori hips!”

However, soon after Auckland bridal salon Jessica Couture welcomed them, K’Lee and her 16-year-old daughter filled the space with blasting dance music, laughter, and the excitement of trying on various stunning gowns.

We can’t wait to see which of the 13 designer dresses K’Lee picked out!

“I had this beautiful assistant called Khalia. I told her I was really nervous because I have a puku, a little bump. But she made it stressless and told me we were going to have fun,” says K’Lee, who is also mum to Kahuriki, 15, Kaylam, nine, Naila, five, and Honour, three.

“We just went for it! I tried on every kind of dress you can imagine – 13 of them! – and we were laughing the whole time. I hope a lot of brides-to-be have this same experience.”

K’Lee and daughter Iliana had a truly special time with bridal assistant Khalia.

The Broken Wings singer wanted something fitting and flattering, as well as comfortable. She’ll be three-and-a-half months post-partum when she walks down the aisle in Hawke’s Bay this November. She says the event will contribute to making 2024 her biggest year yet.

K’Lee tells Woman’s Day, “I wanted something I won’t feel insecure in. I also need it to be easily accessible to breastfeed – with room for the extra bust I’m going to have! But I still wanted to feel sexy and beautiful, and like this is my moment.”

The proud mum shed a tear when she saw her girl all glammed up.

The star tried on an array of fabric and lace, jumping between long and short sleeves, long and short trains, and puffy skirts and figure-hugging cuts. She also played around with veils, earrings and Insta-worthy accessories, like embroidered bridal jackets and glamorous sunnies.

“I didn’t even know you could do certain things with dresses, like change them to ivory white or switch the lace or zips on things. You can keep the top but choose a different cut for the bottom. I was just so overwhelmed! But I was lucky I had my daughter there.”

“We heart these so much!”

Despite all the options in front of her, K’Lee kept going back to the first gown she tried on. Wanting to set the scene and confirm it was the dress, she went home and returned wearing makeup.

Smiling, K’Lee shares, “I tried on the dress again and both times I wore it, my daughter cried. I was like, ‘OK, that’s the dress!’ It’s exactly the make and material I wanted. It’s definitely not the cut or colour I imagined. But, I’m happy with my decision and I can’t wait to wear it.”

It wasn’t only Iliana who shed a sentimental tear. When K’Lee saw her eldest girl step out of the changing room in a bridesmaid’s dress, she was overcome with emotion. “I’d never seen my daughter all dressed up, with a bit of makeup,” she says. “I was like, ‘She really is 16!’ She’s such a young lady now.”

Say yes to the dress!

With the major task of finding her dress done, K’Lee’s focusing on smaller wedding jobs, like choosing the flowers and finalising details with the intimate venue, which is nestled beside a forest.’

“We’ve sent the invitations out, and we’ve gone with amazing caterers who are both mums and just fantastic. I’ll still need to have dress fittings and alterations before the day, and make sure I haven’t forgotten things, like the cutlery!”

The juggle of it all has been made a bit easier with K’Lee’s new part-time role as a lecturer at radio broadcasting school Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi. Her first day came three days after she hung up her headphones at Mai FM in early March, following 13 years with the radio station.

“My last day at Mai was so beautiful and very humbling. My cup was overflowing with so much love and appreciation,” she says.

“All of my family was there, along with colleagues from the past and present. Anyone who couldn’t make it sent flowers and messages. I spent the entire day managing not to cry. Then I sobbed when I finished my final ad break and received a beautiful taonga. They did a haka for me. When I turned around, I saw my three oldest children were part of it.”

When K’Lee arrived for her welcome ceremony at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi, she instantly knew she was in the right place. Again, her whānau was there. Lama, 40, her partner of 10 years, spoke in Samoan to thank staff for his fiancée’s work opportunity.

“He said how much he appreciated them giving me the time. That’s what my family missed and wanted,” says K’Lee, who is keeping their baby’s sex a surprise. “Lama was like, ‘The one thing about K is she’s caring and she gives it her all. She wears her heart on her sleeve.’ I thought, ‘Aww, he does pay attention!’”

Before the bride-to-be darts off to drop dry socks to Lama while he competes in tag-football nationals in the rain, she mentions some other exciting news. The celebrant for their big day is one of her oldest friends, Nickson Clark, who first invited her to join the Mai Morning Show all those years ago.

K’Lee and Lama are all set to add to their whānau of seven.

“We grew up in West Auckland together and I’ve known him since we were 14,” she grins. “He speaks beautiful Samoan, and he knows Lama, our kids and me really well. Nickson and I have been mates for so long. I just hope he doesn’t cry when I do!”

Keep an eye out for K’Lee’s upcoming podcast, Parental Guidance, which is coming soon to the Rova app or wherever you get your podcasts.

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